I’ve always been battling with acne prone skin and blackheads and had just about given up when Gossmakeupartist did a video on how to get rid of blackheads. And by the way, his videos are absolutely awesome so go check them out. Anyway he talked about different products to try, among which were the Paula’s Choice exfoliants. So I jumped in and tried them. At first I got samples (yes! You can buy samples!) and decided I like the 2% liquid the best. It’s originally meant for oily skin but it works on me just as well. My skin isn’t oily, it’s sensitive and overreacts to everything and if anything, it’s on the dry side. After trying it out for a month or so, I jumped in and got the full size.
This is what the 2% BHA liquid looks like:
It comes in a 120ml bottle which is very generous since you don’t use a huge amount of it. The way you should use it is to clean and tone your skin and then apply this lotion and let it dry. After it has dried, apply your moisturizer. I’d suggest using it once a day at night, twice a day can be too harsh. And keep in mind that skin that is being treated with BHA is sensitive to the sun so SPF in your moisturizer or separately is a must. Paula’s Choice also has moisturizers with sunscreen and toners and all kinds of other stuff if you’re interested in trying out the whole line. Many articles are available as samples as well.
Now what I’ve noticed in my few months of daily use – the blackheads on my chin are completely gone, so are most of the ones on my forehead and cheeks. There are remarkably less of them on my nose and the ones that are still there are much lighter. I don’t break out randomly anymore, occasional hormonal breakouts do happen but they’re nowhere near as dramatic as they were before, now I get one to three small whiteheads and that’s it. No cystic acne anymore. My skin looks a lot better overall. I am amazed. It’s not an overnight cure by no means but it does work and that is something I can’t say about many of these sorts of things.
I don’t use a cotton pad to apply it, it seems like a waste to me. I just pour a little on my palm and spread it to my face with clean fingers. At first it did sting, now it rarely does and then it’s very mild. I had no purging issues at all.
A tip: if you’re having a runny nose and blowing your nose a lot, do NOT use it on that period, it will hurt like a crazy feral dog is chewing on your nose while simultaneously burning it off. Personal experience 😀 So don’t use on damaged areas until they heal.
So in short, pros:
* The bottle lasts a long long time
* You can get samples
* Way less blackheads
* Almost no breakouts
* No cystic acne
* Nicer skin in general
* Doesn’t upset my crazy skin too much
* Expensive. It’s 21,50£ but what makes it crazy expensive is the shipping cost which to Estonia for instance was 13£. The shipping for samples is much lower though so really, do get those first to see if it works for you and is worth the crazy money
* Stings a wee bit now and then
* They only ship to Europe as far as I can tell
Overall, I’m giving this a thumbs up! And even though it is crazy expensive, the 120ml bottle will last me forever and then some. I’ve used it for quite some time now and it doesn’t even seem like I’ve touched it at all when looking at the liquid level in the bottle. I’d venture to say you’ll probably have this for a year at least before needing a new one, thus the cost becomes less insane.
The samples look like this, standard sample packaging (official picture):
The samples are divided by skin types but you can get what you like, they don’t force you to stick to one skin type, you can go and try out the different moisturizers or liquids or whatever you like. The samples are 0,55£ each or 5,10£ for an entire set for a certain skin type. You can get more then one, I got like five of the 2% liquid ones which lasted me for a while. Shipping for up to 17 samples is around 4£, depending on where you live.
Definitely go check out their site and get some samples to see for yourself! I was in deep disbelief about this but not anymore. I do intend to try out their moisturizers as well, my daytime Clarins moisturizer does have SPF but I don’t know how big it is, it’s not mentioned anywhere. So for the summer I will need extra to be on the safe side.
Paula’s Choice website