I believe Ive mentioned previously how happy I am with my Clearasil Ultra range, for me theres nothing else like it at clearing blemishes, however it does have its bad points as well as the good.
The good points:
It works, it actually does what it says on the containers - you see visible results within 3 days.
It leaves your skin looking clean, fresh and clarified.
The bad points:
It can be incredibly drying
After a prolonged period it can leave your skin looking a little papery/thin.
After a few days to a week your oil production goes into overdrive and Im left with my makeup sliding off by 11am
Also after a while my pores seem much more open and visible..
So because I get tired of the thin papery looking skin on the sides of my forehead, mixed with looking like I've slapped baby oil on my skin, from time to time I find myself browsing skincare isles looking for something that does everything I want it to, which is leave my skin blemish free, clean looking, fresh feeling and yet moisturised/plump too.
After a fortnight of trying out Neutrogena's Stress Contol range (Awful, a post about that to follow soon!) I was left with lots of spots yet again.. Back to the Clearasil I went!
After a week my spots had cleared up and my skin was clean looking once again.. Yet with the clear skin comes the downside - dry skin patches, except this time I don’t think I had rinsed off the wash properly, so I was left with a particularly ugly scabby patch of skin underneath my jawline, yep 2 long 5mm wide scabs on both sides of my jaw.. Add in my St Moritz and I was left with an odd brown patch of scabby skin! And, like any naughty girl shouldn't do, I began picking at it whilst watching TV! Im one of those people that finds something then begins picking away, all while knowing I shouldn’t be doing it, that it will end in tears, and then I carry on regardless! So 30 minutes later I'd made the patches of skin all red, angry and pretty sore :( Later on that night my Mr had to nip to Tescos, so in desperation I asked him to pick me something up whilst he was there. I figured I just needed to find something that’s a good all rounder.. So after he'd walked up and down the isles whilst on the phone to me he spotted some items from the Simple range. He picked up the toner and read from the label: "Our Pore Minimising Toning Cleanser is a perfect blend of active ingredients and vitamin goodness to visibly reduce the size of pores. Leaves skin feeling refreshed and clarified. Perfect for even sensitive skin…" SOLD!
I have to admit that it did sit on my nightstand for a few nights as I was almost too scared to use it! I normally need something the strength of Clearasil, Oxy etc, to get rid of and keep blemishes at bay, so I didn't know how this would work out.. But as my Mr pointed out "That cost me £4.79!" I guessed I should give it a go.. (£4.79 is considered expensive by my fiance, this is coming from a guy that only uses a 65p bar of soap on his face though!). I should add that Ive found the Simple range to be cheaper in Wilkinson's, Aldi also carry a few items from time to time (at £2.. I picked up a packet of wipes from there, and also the moisturising wash, not pictured).
So.. I gave it a go one night. I wasn't overwhelmed with it, it didn't seem to do anything wonderful, but I thought I might see better results if I purchased a facewash a moisturiser too. So I picked up the Exfoliating wash, the Kind To Skin Purifying Cleansing Lotion, the K.T.S Hydrating Light Moisturiser and a packet of cleansing wipes. For the next few nights I set about using a mixture of what Id purchased, alternating between wipes and the toner, the cleansing lotion and the toner, or if I wanted to feel Id had a deep and thorough cleanse Id use the wash, followed by the toner and moisturiser.. But each morning I would skip using a wash like I had for years previous, and I would use the wipes or just the toner.. I wanted to try and be as gentle as possible to see if my skin would benefit from it.
The thing I noticed immediately was how my skin seemed more 'normal' and far less oily, I LOVED that. The fact my foundation would stay where I put it, the fact it wouldn't slide off by mid-morning, that you couldn’t see reflections of objects in the oily patches on my face, WONDERFUL! My face no longer looked like an oil slick and I didn't need to retouch several times a day! I think I then got over excited after about 5 days, so excited that I thought 'wow, this is amazing.. The reduction in oil, great.. I wonder what else the other products would do..' Sooooo, project bathroom went right out the window and I purchased the Moisturising Wash, another packet of wipes (As a back-up because they were just £2), the K.T.S eye balm, the Refreshing Gel Wash and even the K.T.S Night Cream! Yep, I went wayyyyyyyy overboard!
I don't think I would recommend the Night Cream or eye balm. On my skin I found the night cream far too rich, mildly heavy and it left a sticky almost greasy type residue which I hated. I just hate applying anything on my face or body that will leave a sticky feeling, I like to feel fresh and like my skin is able to breathe.
The Soothing Eye Balm, well that just didn’t seem to do anything for hydration, if anything I felt a tightening effect.. So if tightening is what youre after then yep, its definitely a good one to try, but if like me, you want an eye cream that feels rich, hydrating and nourishing, then I would skip it. It is a little disappointing.. With the word 'Soothing' on it I expected a cooling sensation on application, or something richer, but it just didn’t do anything special.. I wont let it go to waste though, so I think I will keep it for daytime useage and also perhaps during the Summer months when my eyes might be a little more oily due to the heat.
The Cleansing Wipes.. I really liked those. I found that using them in the morning was really nice, as apposed to feeling I might have stripped my skin through using a wash off cleanser, the wipes felt lovely. After using them my skin did look clean, any oil on my face was gone and there was no dirt on the cotton pad after following with toner. When I'd used them in the evening they did take off my mascara too, as well as the rest of my make up. So all in all I would recommend those.
The exfoliating wash is so be expected by a range that’s gentle and intended for sensitive skin.. I however don’t like those types of scrubs.. I know its probably bad to have something pretty 'scrubby' on your skin, but I hate those tiny little beads, I find they barely do anything, they certainly don’t leave my skin looking bright like my St Ives scrub (for blemish prone skin) does. So that’s ok, but nothing special.
The refreshing wash.. I wouldn’t say it left my skin feeling refreshed, but if you have oily skin like me then that’s the one to go for as it feels nicer with it being a gel.
So how did it pan out… Well after day 12 ish things started going awry! I just couldn't keep on top of the one or two spots I was getting.
Previously I had been applying Clinique's Anti Blemish Gel to the occasional spot, and dabbing on tea tree oil on the ones that were just starting to appear.. But now it was at the point where they were popping up all over. I would wake up, see one or two spots, then by night time and Id washed off my make up, there would be another 3 or 4.. A big angry spot on my jawline, little painful ones on my upper lip, the odd one or two on my forehead, but mostly they were coming up on my cheeks, and lots of them..
So a few days ago I had to switch back to Clearasil! My skin still isn't clear but its showing improvement at least, there arent that many new spots appearing.. However, as usual, what comes with the clearer skin? Yep, an over-production in oil. I'm not sure what is worse, skin that is incredibly shiny by mid-morning, or lots and lots of spots!?
Overall I would say give this a try.. If your skin isn't prone to spots like mine then give it a whirl, it did WONDERS at reducing oil because it was so gentle, but I feel it just doesnt deep clean enough, or just simply doesnt fight blemishes. I have considered buying into their range for oily skin, but I just dont think it will cut it.. So back to the Clearasil for now to get my face spot free again, and then maybe onto something else that will (hopefully!!) reduce spots yet keep oil to a minimum.. I wish!! I just can't bare all this oil on my face!!
I want it all, no spots and no oil.. Not an either or situation!
What have I learnt from this.. To not get over excited and to give it longer than a week before excitedly buying up half a product range!!