Best of 2017: Skincare

The best of the best skincare from 2017…

Of all the content that I create here on La Bella, there is one topic that stands out for me personally as being the thing I am most passionate about and that is skincare; having struggled with skin problems all through my teens and right into my early twenties, it is only in the past two to three years that I really feel confident with the appearance of my skin. A lot of that comes from the continued research I do of new products, ingredients and concepts in the skincare industry and so when it came to pick my ‘best of skincare’ for 2017 it was no easy task. 

The past year has seen so many great products launch in the skincare world from the boom of sheet masks, to the return of the classic clay mask along with other cult favourite trends like retinoid infused products, peels versus exfoliators and multi-masking. 

So, of all the products I purchased, tried and tested, which came out on top for me in 2017? 

I’ve broken it down into categories in this post for you, listing my favourites in each and a runner up product which in most cases was a very close second. Don’t see your favourites on the list? Make sure you leave me a comment down below, I am always on the hunt for new skincare products to try and love a good recommendation from a fellow skincare lover. 


Best cleanser:

Clinique Liquid Facial Soap

Clinique’s liquid facial soap is gentle and kind to the skin, but packs a serious punch in terms of cleansing power, removing even the toughest of make-up in one cleanse. This soap cleanser has replaced all other cleaners of this type in my eyes because it causes no agitation to the skin and doesn’t sting my eyes when removing eye makeup. 

runner up:

Waitrose Pure Hot Cloth Cleanser 

When it comes to budget cleansers this one is the best I came across in 2017, at only £5 it is a steal. Falling somewhere between a cleansing oil and a balm, it melts away make-up, even waterproof mascaras, for a gentle soothing cleanse. I have found though that it isn’t the best as a stand alone and sometime needs a double cleanser (using a second cleanser after) to remove all the traces of the oil. 



Best mask:

L’oreal Pure Clay Masks

I currently own three out of the five Pure Clay Mask range and they are probably on the top of my best budget buys of 2017. These masks win the best mask because of the price tag and the payoff; they each give different results, are easy to apply and work quickly. Because of the price point, I feel I can treat myself to a facial several times a week, apply whichever mask suits my skins needs on the day or multitasking for a combined effect. 

runner up:

Garnier Moisture Bomb Sheet Masks

Garnier also expanded their sheet mask range in 2017, introducing four new alternatives to the original Moisture Bomb tissue mask. These sheet masks are so cheap in comparison to some skincare brand alternatives, and only need to be applied for fifteen minutes. I keep a stack of these in my cupboard at all times, perfect after a long day and an essential for travel. 



Best day cream:

Avène Hydrance Optimal UV Light 

A light, hydrating cream with an SPF 20, what more could you ask for in a day cream? Avène’s products are perfect for sensitive skin types and this cream is no exception, it provides super protection from the elements with out blocking or clogging pores or causing any irritations. 

runner up:

Olay 2in1 Hydration + Radiant Glow

This cream falls into second place mostly due to the fact that it is harder to come across than other Olay products. A gorgeous lightweight moisturiser with light reflecting particles and an SPF 15, giving you hydration, sun protection and a dewy glow. It is still my go to daily cream when my skin is looking dull. 


 


Best serum:

Clinique Moisture Surge Hydrating Water Gel Concentrate

This is a powerful serum, and wins the serum of 2017 in my eyes because of the immediate difference I see in my skin every time I apply it. If you suffer from puffy skin in the mornings when you first wake up, this product will become your holy grail product; it soothes and instantly hydrates skin. It works for both day and night, making it a favourite travel companion of mine this year. 

 

runner up:

La Mer Revitalising Hydrating Serum 

I felt so incredibly blessed to have had to opportunity to sample and try some of La Mer’s best products this year and this serum is truly incredible. However, because of the extravagant price tag it falls in second place simply due to the fact that I wouldn’t be dropping the cash needed to replace it when it’s gone. However, if you are looking to branch into the luxury skincare department it is a good place to start; the ingredients are incredible and with continued use I did notice a huge difference in the appearance of my skin. 



Best treatment:

The Ordinary Retinoid 2% Emulsion

Retinoids were the skincare ingredient of the year in 2017, with everyone who’s anyone buzzing about the benefits of injecting this active form of vitamin A into your skincare routine. The price point for retinoid or retinol infused skincare products is on the high end with one exception: The Ordinary. This skincare brand is making a name for itself by providing fuss-free versions of skincare products and ingredients that you might otherwise pay a bomb for, they are debunking skincare myths and in a way exposing the unnecessary excessive price tags of high end skincare. Their retinoid solutions are incredible and provide visible improvements to the appearance of your skin within a few uses.

runner up:

Clinique Fresh Pressed Daily Booster

I loved this treatment because of the fact that you can add it to any of your current creams or serums for an extra boost of vitamin C when your skin is on the dull side and in need of some instant brightening. It does what it’s supposed to do and although not the cheapest product, the individual tubes mean you can spread it out over time.



Best night cream:

Olay Complete Night

This is a perfect of example of the ‘sometimes simple is best’ theory; the Olay Complete range is simple but if you look closely at the specific ingredients, includes everything your skin needs to stay healthy, hydrated and to protect it from the early signs of ageing. This night cream is packed with anti-oxidants, B and E vitamins and other skin loving, restorative ingredients. It’s lightweight, non-greasy formula makes it perfect for nighttime wear, so that you wake up to soft, glowing skin. Also, because the cream isn’t heavy it makes a perfect base for mixing or combining with facial oils and other treatments, for extra night hydration. 

runner up:

Waitrose Pure Night Cream

As far as basic night creams go, nothing came close to Olay in my opinion in 2017 apart from one: the Waitrose own brand range Pure’s night cream. Also a lightweight cream with cotton milk extracts, it wraps your skin in the soft, soothing ingredients of vitamin E, shea butter, argan oils and jojoba. A slightly heavier formula, but if you suffer from dry skin that can be a good thing. I also found it really soothing to apply after a day in the sun during the summer. 



Best peel:

Gatineau Radiance Enhancing Gommage

Of the two Gatineau peels I tried in 2017, the Radiance Enhancing Gommage came out on top; this gel peel is easy to apply and works faster than any other facial peel or peeling treatment I have tried yet. It lifts dead skin, revealing softer, smoother and brighter looking skin with little effort.

runner up:

The Ordinary AHA 30% +BHA 2% Peeling Solution

This is the first acid peel I have tried, and while the results are undeniable, I have to admit that this product terrifies me slightly with every use. For one, the blood red colour makes it almost ghoulish to apply. Secondly, it is an acid peel with clear warnings on the bottle to not exceed the recommended application time; you can literally feel it tingling as you apply and my recommendation would be not to leave this sitting on you skin for even the short five minutes as recommended on the bottle. I apply and then remove with a muslin cloth directly, and even after sitting on my skin for less than a minute it leaves it incredibly soft. It is also excellent to help reduce the appearance of blemish marks as they are healing. 



Best eye cream:

Clinique Moisture Surge All About Eyes Roller

This version of the Clinique All About Eyes serum is a little bit harder to get your hands on (I usually find it in Duty Free or on Amazon), but really effective. The metal roller ball is really soothing and cooling for application, helping instantly reduce the appearance of under eye circles while at the same time preventing excess pull or drag of the delicate under eye skin during application. The rollerball style tube also makes this product ideal and convenient for travel, you can even apply it over make-up for a quick freshen up. I also recently noticed that you can now get a men’s version of this product, the Clinique Men Anti-Fatigue Cooling Eye Gel.

runner up:

Acqua alla Rose Eye Cream with Caffeine 

If I’m completely honest, I actually prefer this cream over the Clinique roller, but it falls into second place for two reasons: a) it’s application isn’t as convenient as the rollerball gel and b) it’s not as widely available outside Italy. I have manage to track it down on Amazon though and honestly, I highly recommend it. This cream takes down puffiness and dark circles almost instantly. 


 

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