When it comes to Emma Chamberlain, the word relatable gets tossed around a lot. It’s for a good reason, since the 19-year old content creator possesses that rare quality that makes each and every one of her 10 million YouTube subscribers feel like her bestie. She discusses mental health and insecurities with the same ease and humor as her thrifting obsession and the quest for the best fast-food French fries that makes it impossible not to watch her.
This openness applies to her skin as well, which is why Gen-Z skin-care brand Bad Habit tapped her as its creative director and global brand ambassador. “I’ve had so much fun exploring what works for me and what I enjoy in a product,” Chamberlain says. “They might be very different from the next guy, but it’s what I like. But also I like to look at skin care as self-care. I think Bad Habit and I, we both look at skin care like a self-care thing. It’s fun, it’s relaxing, it shouldn’t be a chore.”
This positive approach hasn’t always been her attitude, though. Up until recently, Chamberlain openly struggled with acne. “Luckily, since getting off Accutane, my skin has been way more manageable,” she says. “My skin used to react badly to virtually any product I put on it. It was a hormonal thing and kind of out of my control. No products could fix it, so that was very frustrating. But now it’s done.”
Now her routine is all about stopping the occasional pimple in its tracks and piling on the moisture—and accepting that sometimes it just is what it is. “No matter how amazing your products are, it might not help,” she says. “It might be something out of your control. So really, it’s like using the right products to shrink that stuff quickly and move forward.”
So what are those products she can count on? We asked Chamberlain to drop her routine. Read on for the products she can’t live without.
In the mornings I tend to be very lazy, but I of course start with washing my face in the shower. I use the Bad Habit Mint Matcha, my fave. At night—let’s say I have makeup on—I’m going to take that off with the Bad Habit cleansing balm. That’s my absolute favorite makeup remover. It’s also great because you don’t have to use a pad; you just put it straight on your face. After that I’ll sometimes go in again with the same cleanser I use in the morning if I really feel like I need to get everything off.
Like I said, in the morning, I keep it very simple. I don’t overdo it because I’m going to put makeup on or be running around. I have a few serums that I’ll do occasionally if I’m feeling funky. I have a tea tree oil one, a green tea one, and a snail one. I kind of try them all. I honestly just have fun with serums since I don’t really know what they do anyway. I mainly use the Iunik ones. They’re great.
My Face Oil
My main morning product is the Bad Habit hemp oil. That stuff is amazing for underneath makeup—and it’s amazing for looking like a newborn baby in the morning.
If I’m not going outside that day, I’ll skip sunscreen. Instead I’ll use my multivitamin moisturizer, because I feel like my sunscreen and moisturizer, if I put them together, it just gets too much. So I either do one or the other depending on whether or not I’m going out. And I love the Melatonin night cream before bed.
If I am going outside, I put on a little bit of facial sunscreen because that’s important, even though I don’t like to do it. I love EltaMD. I’ve had a great experience with that one, since it’s nice and thin.
The Total Reboot chemical exfoliant is a game changer! I do this probably one or two times a week at night. It’s amazing. I don’t do extractions myself anymore. I used to do that, but that’s a big no-no. This peel is the most I do to clear my pores now.
My Face Mask
I’ve been using the Bad Habit Hyaluronic Mask a lot lately. I’ll use it at random times later in the day, or if I’m about to get in the shower. If I had a long day and I feel dull and dry, I’ll do it. I’ve been using it a lot right now because it’s winter, and I feel like I need that hydration. I got all my friends to use it too, and they love it.
My Lip Balms
I have a lot of lip balms. I love the Laneige one; that one’s amazing. I love the Kosas brand—so good. A good Burt’s Bees never hurt anybody! I’ll carry that thing around everywhere. It’s great and so reliable. I just tried the Tatcha one—it’s crazy, but it’s definitely a little bit too bougie for me. Like, listen, y’all, this is lip balm. You guys are making me feel like I’m J.Lo—it comes with the little gold spoon! Just get me a cheap Burt’s Bees, because if I lose it, it’s a nobody-gets-hurt type of thing. If someone touches my Tatcha, it’s over, because that one looks like it was found in a cave in the seven wonders of the world or something. But I do like it!
Follow Emma Chamberlain on Instagram @emmachamberlain. This interview has been edited and condensed.