Yesterday as we were getting ready to head out the door, of course I had just finished my makeup and was waiting for her. As she normally does, she looked at me up and down. What she normally doesn't do is compliment me very much. Yesterday though was much different in that she paused and said what did I do to my skin because it was glowing. Of course I thought about being a smart arse and say I always glowed but merely accepted the compliment.
The reason my skin looked better was the result of a rather long and drawn out process.
I have always said if you want to present more effectively as a transgender woman, you need to put the work into it as any cis woman does, except you have to be be better.
To begin with, my skin has benefited greatly from hormone replacement therapy and age. My skin softened a great deal from the HRT and my beard has continued to "gray" due to my age (69). As it tuned out for me, this was only the beginning of skin care for me.
Since I still shave, I use a Gillette battery powered multi blade system. Since I am always financially challenged and aware, I use a Barbasol shave cream. It works for me and I can go a whole day easy enough without a five o clock shadow.
After I shave, anymore I can proceed with a fairly light coating of Cover Girl + Olay "Simply Ageless" foundation. Once again, a foundation I can reasonably buy at our local Walgreens store.
I think though my nightly skin regime helps me dramatically too. Every night without fail, I use one or two green tea cleansing cloths I buy from "Big Lots" which is just a slightly upscale dollar discount store. I can buy a pack of thirty for one dollar. After a good cleansing, I finish up with a liberal application of a basic Olay moisturizer called "Olay Complete" It comes in a relatively inexpensive six ounce bottle I buy for about twelve dollars at my local Kroger super grocery/drug store. The moisturizer lasts me for months, so I estimate I spend about five dollars a month on my skin care.
If you are still in the closet, these days you can use the excuse of shaving to buy a man's moisturizer.. In addition to feeling good, you can look better too.
Of course, you can go to one of the fancy makeup specialty stores if you have the money and are out of the closet. In the meantime though, I hope these ideas will help you along.