Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Skin care review: Paula's Choice 2% BHA Liquid ( Regular and CLEAR Extra Strength )

I went ahead and decided to include a chemical exfoliant in my skincare routine.
Between AHA & BHA's, I went ahead and chose a BHA since I am prone to blemishes.

Although I have dry skin; between the lotion, gel, and liquid I went with the liquid. I already have other emollients in my skincare routine, and too much can end up being comedogenic.

Product Claims:

  • Shrink enlarged pores with this 2% liquid salicylic acid leave-on exfoliant that removes old skin cells both on the skin's surface and inside the pore.
  • Acne Breakouts, Anti-Aging, Blackheads, Enlarged Pores, Keratosis Pilaris, Redness, Rosacea, Wrinkles
  • For All Skin Types
  • Creates radiant, even-toned skin
  • Reduces redness & builds collagen
  • Unclogs & diminishes enlarged pores

My Five Day Results

My experience with this product:

Addressing each claim one by one..
I personally did not see any difference in pore size. I do not have any issues with having any enlarged pores that I am aware of.
Although, I do not have any breakouts, I  get the occasional blemish popping up. I have not experienced any blemishes appearing other than the one blemish that pops up due to the 'Time of month'.  Since BHA's are great for cell turn over, the lifespan of my special visitors are very short lived.
I have not experienced any dryness using this product. As a matter of fact, my skin is now very soft and has the feel of a perfect base for make up. This product eliminated any dry patches that a scrub did not eliminate, and made dryness a thing of the past.
I feel my skin tone has also improved, not a significant amount since that was not an issue.
The redness of any blemish was also greatly reduced, inflammation was greatly reduced as well.

Overall, I feel like this is a great product for anyone who is looking for an exfoliator.
I feel like this product may even be essential for those who wear make up. I could not imagine skipping out on this product in my skin care and feel that it has improved my skin.

Product differences

Both BHA's are essentially the same. However, once my original BHA exfoliant was starting to run low and PC had a sale offered up... I went ahead and purchased the Extra Strength BHA from her clear line.

The Extra Strength Exfoliant is formulated with a higher PH, so that the product penetrates even deeper than her Regular BHA.

Quoted directly from Paula's Choice FAQ
What's the difference between the Regular and Extra Strength Clear exfoliants? Both contain 2% salicylic acid!The difference between the Regular and Extra Strength exfoliants is in the delivery systems and their textures. Both anti-acne exfoliants contain 2% salicylic acid but the Regular Strength has a nearly weightless feel on your skin and a pH of around 3.9, making it gentler on the skin. The Extra Strength version's formula can penetrate deeper into the pore and has a pH of 3.5. It is designed for those with more stubborn or persistent breakouts. Both exfoliants are highly effective options as part of a routine for Clear skin; you may need to experiment with both to see which works best for your skin type. It is also fine to use both: Apply one in the morning and the other at night.

 I went ahead and did the purchase and have now been using the Extra Strength for about a month.
The results are the same, but like is stated.. this is more so for those with more stubborn break outs and concerns.
My skin felt more softer with the extra strength.. however, it does feel a lot stronger so I do alternate between the two. I prefer to use this product at night since you DO need to use an SPF with these products. ( And your best option is really to only use them at night. )

I prefer the packaging of her Regular BHA as opposed to her Extra Strength BHA. The packaging feels cheap.. and the requires you to soak a cotton ball as opposed to a cotton pad. It feels as if you waste more product. Especially since it is instructed to 'Soak a cotton ball and then to lightly apply the product.' 

For the Regular Exfoliant, you drop about a dime size of the product onto a cotton pad. As opposed to the Extra Strength where you have to squirt out product.

Both are great products, and the only con is the packaging. For extra sensitive skin I would probably use the gel or lotion, as I feel the liquid may be too strong.

 I have sensitive skin and missed a spot after exfoliating. I had passed the cotton pad right under the sides of my nose, and did not apply SPF. So after awhile, I did experience redness and burning. So it is essential you cover every inch of your face with SPF, and then layer it again for safety. 


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