Pore Decisions

The All-Natural Treatment Ashley Graham Gets Again & Again

Plus, her self-tanning tips, favorite beauty tool and more.

by Taylor Jean Stephan

In Bustle’s Pore Decisions, celebrities, influencers, and Bustle’s own readers recount their personal skin journeys: the good, the bad, and everything in between. Here, model and St. Tropez brand ambassador Ashley Graham shares her skin care routine, favorite products, and more.

Ashley Graham exudes a warm, sunny energy, both IRL and online — and not just because she’s perpetually bronzed. The model, mom-of-three and St. Tropez ambassador is known for her signature sun-kissed glam, which is why the brand’s newest launch, the Luxe Body Serum, has quickly become a new favorite in her tanning arsenal. “I just love it because it's super hydrating,” she says. The light body serum is packed with hydrating skin care ingredients like vitamin B5, hyaluronic acid and niacinamide — a must-have for anyone else like Graham, who says she self-tans once or twice a week and has her technique “down to a science.”

But just because she’s perfected the art of the self-tan (in 30 minutes or less!) doesn’t mean that she hasn't had any skin missteps along the way. “I'm a wild sleeper and I've been known to sleep on my hand or something like that and then you just end up with self-tanner all over,” she laughs. But the worst thing she’s ever done for her skin? “Definitely laid in the sun on a boat in the middle of the Caribbean with no sunscreen,” she admits.

For more of the model’s favorite beauty products, the treatment she does instead of filler, and how she winds down at night, keep reading.

On Her Earliest Skin Care Memory

“It was definitely middle school because I think that's when I discovered that washing my face was a good idea. The first products I remember trying are Clean & Clear Morning Burst cleanser and Cetaphil cleanser — they both just bring me back. I still think that Cetaphil is pretty good for washing your face. It's just clean and simple.”

On Her Biggest Skin Annoyance

“Currently my biggest skin concern is blackheads on my nose. I just don't know how to combat them quite yet, beyond just getting extractions. So, I'm just always getting extractions. I just got my first facial from Shani Darden and it was painful and exhilarating. She was like, ‘I can't believe you just got through [the extractions] without making any noise.’ I also think that the moisturizer I was using before is too thick, so now I'm trying Shani’s new peptide moisturizer that's oil free and super light. I'm trying to figure that out for the summertime.”

On The Best (& Worst) Beauty Advice She’s Ever Received

“The best beauty advice I've ever received is the simplest thing: no matter how intoxicated you are, make sure you wash your face. And I think the worst is that any skin care is for everybody. I think that it's not fair to say that this hydrator, for instance, is for every single skin type. That's pretty bad advice.”

On Her Self-Tan Technique

“If I'm going to give myself a self-tan, I'm going to do it in the evening. And it's going to be after the kids go to sleep so that nobody comes in and screws it up [laughs]. Right after a shower, I prep and I do my pre-lotioning with my feet, my knees, my elbows, my hands. And if my husband's around, I'd beg him to do my back.

I also like the new St. Tropez Luxe Tan Tonic Drops for the face. They make you really feel like you're glowing from the inside out — like you just got a facial and you came out of a vacation. I apply two to four drops, depending on what I'm doing. And if I've got events, or if I'm at home, I use it once or twice a week. I will put on my Dermophisiologique C5 Serum before I go to sleep, no retinol, and then I'll do the drops — then I’m done.

On Her Filler-Alternative

“Acupuncture — I do it every two weeks, religiously, all over my body, my neck, and my face. It is my filler. I do acupuncture [instead of filler]. I go to Sandra Lanshin in Brooklyn and she basically dry-needles it. It is fricking phenomenal. I do it every two weeks, but you have to keep up on it [for it to work].

On Her Go-To Beauty Tool

“The gua sha really is such a good tool. I feel like it's so good for all over your body, too, and you can also do it to your friends. I use it as another way to build up collagen in my skin, but you have to be extra oiled up. And I use it in my neck because I get lots of tension in my head. Sandra has these how-tos on her TikTok that show how to do it.”

On Her Wind-Down Routine

“I love a red light mask. [My skin] gets really red, really quick, [so it helps with that]. I keep it next to my bed and use it probably twice a week. And I’m that chick in bed with my Therabody boots on. I’m obsessed with laying down with the mask on, boots on, listening to a meditation.”