On Trial: Biologique Recherche, Kiehl’s, Foreo, & Avène

This might sound completely extra, but I’ve found that taking notes on how my skin reacts to a product helps me determine how useful it is to me. For certain products, especially one’s that are meant to improve the condition of the skin over a long period of time, taking notes on progress and any changes in the skin helps me to evaluate the effectiveness of that product. I’ve recently introduced some new products into my routine and I’ve been tracking my results for the past month or so.

FOREO LUNA MINI 2: Sunflower $139

F0reo’s LUNA Mini 2 is the newest version of their FOREO Mini line. FOREO is a brand that makes personal care devices out of 100% non-porous silicon. It’s antibacterial which is excellent for facial cleansing devices and toothbrushes. The MINI 2 is the smaller version of the LUNA and I personally see no reason to get the larger one unless you just have massive hands. The MINI 2 is about $60 cheaper and has all the same specifications as the regular LUNA’s do.

Claims: The T-Sonic pulsations deliver the unique ability to remove 99.5% of dirt and oil, as well as makeup residue and dead skin cells, and exfoliate without irritating the skin“–Foreo’s Website

Foreo also claims that users found that the Luna Mini 2 created softer and smoother skin (97%) and healthier skin (87%).

My Experience

Week 1: I noticed after the first use how soft my skin felt. It was incredibly smooth on the surface and felt like baby skin. I was very surprised by this because it’s not an exfoliator and I hadn’t expected my skin to feel so noticeably different after using it. The rest of the week I continued to marvel at how my skin felt after using the device. Because it’s not an exfoliator in the traditional sense I had little to no irritation or redness after using.

Week 2: My skin was definitely clearer on week 2. I can’t completely attribute that to this product because I also introduced another product into my routine around the same time as the Foreo. I do feel that I was getting more use out of my cleanser using the Foreo. You can really feel the product being pushed into the pores and the device keeps the product moving around on the face much longer than it would be with regular hand washing. I took note that after cleansing with the Foreo all of my makeup was removed. When I hand wash and tone after, I would often find little bits of makeup on my cotton pad. With the Foreo I never noticed dirt or residue on my toner’s cotton pad.

Week 3: No discernible difference between week 2 and 3. Overall my skin was very bright and clear. I continued to feel like the device was really working my products into the skin and getting it cleaner than I could with just my hands.

Final Thoughts: I believed going into this purchase that I would enjoy the Luna because while I loved the idea of my Clarisonic, the brushes were just too harsh on my skin. What I didn’t expect was to fall head over heels in love with it. That’s rare for me, but I’m definitely a convert. My skin looks brighter, clearer, and plumper right after using. Aside from deep cleaning you get a really nice massage on the face every time you use this. Sometimes I focus on my lymph nodes, I don’t know that it actually does anything but it’s relaxing. The charge on this product lasts for up to 5 months (300 uses) and there are no brush heads to replace. Overall I give the LUNA Mini 2 a 5/5. Really happy and pleasantly shocked by this product.

Kiehl’s Daily Reviving Conentrate $46-122

I recently purchased this product as a replacement for the Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum and have been using it steadily for 2 weeks now. It’s a dry-“ish” oil serum that meant to be used in the morning. It features a blend of Tamanu Botanical Oil, Sunflower Botanical Oil, and Ginger Root Essential Oil. It is meant to be used after a concentrated serum and before moisturizer and sunscreen.

Claims: 

  • “Strengthens skin’s defenses against daily aggressors to keep skin youthful and radiant-looking all day”
  • “Provides antioxidant protection with a powerful blend of naturally-derived oils, including Ginger Root, Sunflower and Tamanu, to help skin feel fresh and look energized morning to night”–Kiehl’s Website

My Experience:

Week 1: I noted the smell was very bright and that my skin took quite a bit of time to really absorb the product. My redness seemed to calm down while the product absorbed into my skin. By day 5 I noted that I my skin was feeling very plump and like it was maintaining moisture more so than usual.

Week 2: I noted that I was definitely seeing the “reviving” aspect of the product. There is definitely an “awakening” effect to this serum. After constant morning application my skin was looking really bright and awake. The somewhat dewy effect of an oil contributes to looking very glowy. I still believed the product took too long to absorb into the skin, so I determined to apply less in week 3.

Week 3: My period decided to wreck me on week three. All of my little cousins (4 of them, ages 13-6) were in my house screaming 24/7 so I wasn’t getting much sleep either. Not a great week for my skin, you can imagine. I was dehydrated and incredibly dry, sleepless, and overall looking really dull. I had a small pimple or two but they healed up quickly with a spot-treatment. Mostly I was dealing with dry patches and incredible dehydration. I applied my usual amount the first few days because I felt like I really needed the extra hydration despite the time it takes to absorb the product. Everything was going the same as it was in week 2. The last couple of days of week 3 were much better for my skin. I decided to try using less product to see if the results would still be the same and if it would absorb faster. It did absorb much faster when using less product, but skin didn’t get the same brightening and plumping effect.

Week 4: This is the week where I really got this product to work at its full potential. I continued to use the same amount of product (about a dime size) and instead of waiting for it to completely sink it I went ahead and added my moisturizer on top on a day where I was in a rush. Turns out this is my favorite way to apply the product. For some reason I felt like the mixing of what was left of the serum on my skin with my cream really made my cream sink into my pores. Maybe something about molecule size going on there. Much like using a hyaluronic acid, I felt like the moisturizer bonded with my skin more than it normally does. This is how I’ve been using the product since I discovered this method and I’m very happy with the effects.

Final Thoughts: Very happy with this purchase. It took a little bit of trial and error to get it to work perfectly for me, and I hope that method makes it work for you if you’re struggling with this product. I will say that this a no-go for oilier skin types. You’ll want to find your brightening serums in a non-oil based form (or at least use oil’s that aren’t excessively hydrating). I don’t love the scent but it’s not artificially fragranced, which is a plus for me. Because I did start this product in the fall, I don’t yet know if it’s something I would carry into summer. This product is a solid 4.5/5 for me. The excessive hydration in a serum is a bit odd and can be hard to work with, but the effect this product gives is really beautiful.

Bioloqique Recherche Lotion P50 V $27-98

Much has been said about P50. It’s probably the cult product of cult products. It’s a liquid exfoliator that some use as a toner. It’s legend is perfect skin in a bottle. There are the originals aka the 1970 versions, which contain phenol. There are also the new versions which do not contain phenol. I’m not one to literally burn my face off for the sake of beauty, so I skipped out on the 1970 version for the newer version. I might offend the purists, but what the literal fuck are y’all doing putting phenol on your faces (daily!!!!)?? The new version contains “Onion Extract, Lactic Acid, Salicylic Acid, Burdock Extract, and Plankton”–Source. I chose the V formula which is for people with normal to dry skin, that is slightly sensitive but not too sensitive (there’s the P50W for you). I only apply this once a day, at night, following my toner. I purchased mine online here.

My Experience:

Week 1: I’m used to BHA/AHA’s because I regularly use Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% Liquid Exfoliant. My skin still became very red on my cheeks the first few times I used this product. It dries down very strangely. My skin felt tight and almost like there was a liquid bandaid stretched across it. I left it on for 10 minutes by itself before adding anything else on top and I felt that this was maybe allowing it to dry out my skin too much? I immediately noticed my skin clearing up, becoming brighter, and more even-toned.

Week 2: I figured out that the liquid bandaid feel was normal. When I followed up with a hyaluronic acid serum the feeling went away. I no longer got any redness with this product and my face only tingled slightly. It does sting if you have a popped pimple. My skin was looking the best it had in a really long time. My tone was more even than it has ever been. The best part of all is that the visibility of my sebaceous filaments has drastically reduced. I have always had visible sebaceous filaments on my nose, as most people do. I was always self conscious because they can look like blackheads, despite being totally normal and healthy. This seems to keep the top layer of them in check. They no longer have that grey appearance that can, and often is, mistaken for blackheads. I love this product for that alone, honestly.

Week 3: This was the week of doom, if you’ll recall. My skin was dehydrated and more sensitive overall this week, so I definitely became a bit more red when I used this product than I had on week 2. That said, I continued to use it nightly, while paying extra attention to hydrating my face. I feel like that might have been a mistake on two of my most dry days, but overall it didn’t mess up my skins overall hydration more than it already was. I began to notice that I had no congested pores on my face at all! This is not usual for me as I always get a little bit of congestion on my chin.

Week 4: I’m very lucky to have relatively small pores. You can’t really see them on my face unless you’re up super close in a magnifying mirror, and even then it’s really only on that part of the cheek that’s close to the nose. They can stretch out a bit there when I’m congested or suffering a pimple. I feel like they look tighter and more refined after continued use of this product.

Final Thoughts: Because I don’t and won’t use the phenol version, I can’t really say comment on if the original is really the magic people say it is. I will say that this product is very very good, regardless of the hype that comes with the other version. My skintone is more even than it has been since my hormones went wild, my pores are tight, my sebaceous filaments are less noticeable, and my skin’s texture is incredibly even with no congestion. 5/5.

Avène TriXera Plus Selectiose Cleansing Gel $29

Because this isn’t a product with active ingredients that promises dramatic changes over time, I’m not going to go through a weekly process with you all. I orginally purchased this item as a nightly cleanser to use. I prefer a gel at night because it makes me feel like my skin is cleaner (I know this is a terrible association), but as a sufferer of dry and dehydrated skin, gel’s have been out of the question for a while. Enter this. It’s completely soap free and actually contains primrose oil, which my skin loves. It’s not hydrating, but it’s not drying either. It leaves the skin clean, but in the same condition it was before using. I pair this with the FOREO at night and the results have been incredible. Warning: if it drips into your mouth be prepared for the worst taste you could ever imagine. 5/5.

PS. Make sure to enter my instagram giveaway for a chance to win the Limited Edition NARS Banc de Soleil Highlighting Palette–here.

FTC: this widget garners me a small commission at no extra expense to you. Feel free to ignore it!

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