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I don't like to boast but I've always been fairly blessed when it came to clear skin, all the while at high school, while my unfortunate friends were coming out with nasty blackheads and red spots that resembed Mount Etna, I had perfectly clear skin. I mean I'd get the odd spot or two around that time of the month, but never an outbreak to rival that of my best friends.
However, little did I know that all my years of passive skin care would all catch up with me! Last summer to be precise, I was 18, newly single and eager to get back out on the town and flaunt myself! However one day I woke up with this huge red boil (sorry for the description!) and it stayed for about 3 days along with all these little red spots. For a couple of weeks I tried everything, washing my face, wearing as little make up as possible but nothing would work! Eventually I had to get som medicated wash from the doctors when things got serious... luckily it wasn't going to stay and haunt me and cleared up pretty soon! In a way I'm quite grateful as that was the time my mum decided to treat me to a Clinique regime - she bought all the products I'd need to keep my skin clean and healthy!
THE RANGE Clinique is actually an off-shoot of the Estee Laudir company which I never knew until writing this review, and was established in 1968. The purpose of Clinique was to provide a customised service, suited to the individual rather than just one basic product - there's several different types of each skin care product available to accomadate dry skin, oily skin, etc. The range includes basic skin care (moisturisers, toners & cleansers) as well as make up (foundations, lipsticks, blushers) and hair care (shampoo, conditioners) and specialised skin products (spot blemish gel, anti-ageing cream).
THE PRODUCT The product is in a small green tinted bottle with the customary Clinique pale green lid - as I always say - simple but effective. The bottle is made of plastic - ideal for squeezing out the contents and to ensure no breakages! The screw top is perhaps not the most practical, a flip top would have provided easier access but I don't want to seem to fussy! The product is a fairly runny gel, not as thin as water or moisturiser, but thin enough to spread. The smell is quite chemical like, not particularly pleasant or appealing, but there again you'd hardly expect it to smell of roses! In a way it smells almost like glue! Usage instructions recommend "cleanse skin, apply thin layer to blemish, use one application dairly, if needed and no dryness occurs, increase to 2 or 3 times daily." And this is exactly what I'd recommend, it's much better to apply it to clean skin with no make up on as it provides direct access to the blemish (love the way they use that posh word instead of spot or big fat ugly zit!) with no covering layer. The smallest amount is needed, it really does spread out and soaks in within about 30 seconds. It's not noticeable on the skin really although does tend to make the area a bit more shiny than normal so I wouldn't really recommend applying it before going out. As for time taken to reduce or get rid of spots then I'd say it depends on the size of the spot... a small red spot would disappear over night in my case whereas a slightly bigger one may take several applications through the day and overnight to disappear. In general I find that if I apply it at night the spot tends to have disappeared or at the very least reduced greatly in size and severity.
THE SCIENCE The gel contains contains active ingredients including salicylic acid which is proven to reduce blemishes, clear the skin and is found in most products as well as witch hazel which is a natural antiseptic. Skin calming ingredients also ensure the blemish does not increase at all and help cleanse the skin.
WORTH IT? It costs £9.50 for 15ml, quite expensive for such a small bottle you may well think initially. However I've had my bottle since that fateful time early June last year, and I've still got over half of it left. On average I use it about 4 times a week to cover the odd spot here and there so if you're lucky and only prone to the odd few spots here and there it's ideal... but if you're one of the very unlucky ones and suffer heavily it's probably not the best for you as it would end up drying your skin out quite heavily.
So there we have it, my little God-send in keeping my skin blemish free. You better go and buy it now because if this June my skin ends up like it did last year I'll be buying out every shop, you've been warned!