Facial essences (or essences-in-lotion) were, until recent times, an exclusivity of Asian skincare; skin-softening lotions that either replace western “toners” or can be added to a skincare regime to provide an extra level of hydration. Western toners contribute to the cleansing process by further helping to remove foreign substances while restoring the skin to its natural pH balance. Asian facial essences take this process a step further by preparing and conditioning the skin, leaving the top layer soft and ready for a better penetration of further products. Think of an essence as a kind of toner that as well as removing the impurities your cleanser may leave behind, imparts nutrients and hydration into your skin to help it better absorb serum and moisturizer. This is definitely taking a good thing and making it better.
Anyone can incorporate an essence into their skincare regime. And those who are going for a glowing almost no make-up finish will find the added hydration is a perfect way to get the best from this look. Everyone knows about the benefits of drinking water for clear healthy skin, so think of essences as a direct source of hydration. Healthy skin has a cell renewal rate of around 28 days and the potent actives in essences aid in that turnover and even help to speed it up.
Since they are a liquid, you may be tempted to apply an essence to your face with a cotton pad in the same way you would a toner, but doing this would be a waste of product. Instead, splash a little onto your hands and delicately tap it into your cheeks, forehead and chin. Tapping it into your skin will allow quicker absorption. This stage is usually followed by serum and moisturizer to seal in the goodness. The tapping application provides the added advantage of promoting circulation, so expect to emerge from the bathroom rosy-cheeked and glowing.
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