(product photo courtesy of lancome-usa.com)
5 fl.oz./150mL $95.00
Essences have become an ever popular step in our skincare regimen thanks to the the KBeauty phenomenon. And I am very happy about that. What exactly is an essence? An essence is a primer step in your skincare. Essences are different than toners. They absorb the products you apply afterwards, helping the rest of your skincare routine work better and harder, all the while providing unique and targeted benefits. I love a good essence. I find them to be better than a regular toner. A good essence not only restores the pH level to the skin but it treats it too. Usually it will hydrate the skin, restoring necessary hydration that was lost during the cleansing process and therefore helping to benefit the natural moisture barrier.
However, sometimes an essence can go a bit farther and actually clarify and brighten the skin too. That is the case with LANCÔME Clarifique Refining Brightening Dual Essence. Clarifique is supposed to visibly improve uneven skin tone & texture while minimizing the appearance of pores, exfoliate, and nourish the skin. The dual-acting bi-phase formula is made of two essences:
- Clear Active Essence: glycolic acid, salicylic acid and organic beech bud extract to gently exfoliate the outermost layer of the skin (the stratum corneum). Beech Bud Extract also hydrates the skin.
- Lipidic Oil Essence: infused with grapeseed and sunflower seed oils, which are rich in omega-6 fatty acids that help to nourish & hydrate the skin.
Immediately skin feels hydrated, plump and softer to the touch. Skin is better prepared for the skincare products to follow. After 1 week, skin looks luminous radiant; skin texture and tone are improved. After 4 weeks, skin is revitalized; skin feels purified & refreshed, pores appear to look tighter. (based on self assessment of 51 women in a 4-week study)
Clarifique benefits skin that is dull, has large pores, and has uneven skin texture and tone. The website lists it as benefiting dry skin but my skin is normally dry (it is in its normal stage right now for the spring/summer season) and I find this product to be slightly drying as of right now. There is some denatured alcohol in the formula, listed as the second ingredient. I cannot consciously recommend it for dry skin. However, I would recommend for any other skin type. That would be normal, combination, oily, and even acneic skin types. Sensitive skin is not a skin type but a skin condition. If your skin is sensitive this would not likely work for you. The essence does contain a fair amount of glycolic acid, which can be harsh on dry and sensitive skins. Also, there is nothing to really hydrate the skin in this formula other than the grapeseed and sunflower seed oils. For example, there isn't any glycerin or hyaluronic acid. I feel this formula would benefit more from just a slight bit of one of those ingredients and then it could be used more for dry skin. One would think that an essence like this would have more hydrating ingredients should it be recommended for dry skin types. It also contains a derivative of Vitamin C, Vitamin Cg (ascorbyl glucoside), which is known to neutralize free radicals, brightens, and smooths the skin.
To use: for use day and night before serums to help skincare work better. Shake to activate formula. Pour three drops onto the palm of hands or onto a cotton round. Press onto face and neck. Follow with serums and moisturizer.
Did I notice any results from it? You can see below. It definitely brightened the skin. I noticed some significant brightening around my forehead, which is where I have the most hyperpigmentation. I did not notice any significant difference in pore (hair follicle) size. I really don't believe that pore size can change that much once it has been dilated to a certain point, because hair follicles aren't elastic in nature. However, I was happy with the amount of exfoliation and pigmentation decrease I did see in the month I have been using this product. Also, these pictures were taken with different phone cameras, so they do look different. The first picture was taken with an iPhone 6SE and the second was taken with an iPhone 12 Pro Max. The resolution is vastly different.
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