So I think I'm on about week seven of using the Vichy NormaDerm range for acne-prone and oily skin. I had planned to do a review around the fourth week, as that was the earliest the labels promised results, but at the four week mark I got sucked into my dissertation and never got around to putting together a post because I was too busy freaking out. But now that I have a bit of time, I thought I should probably get back in the blogging swing of things.
If you remember, these are the products I bought - pretty much the whole range as it's available in the UK.
It took me about a week of trying different layers and combinations to settle into a consistent routine, but I finally managed to find a combination I liked.
Morning: Wash with Gel Cleansing Wash (pump bottle). Apply toner with cotton pad. Apply layer of ProMat all over face, and while it's still wet, apply face makeup (usually Bobbi Brown Oil Free Tinted Moisturizer).
Evening: After removing eye makeup with an oil-based cleanser, scrub with Exfoliating Cleansing Gel in the shower. Then wash with Gel Cleansing Wash. Apply toner with cotton pad. Add thick layer of NormaDerm Nuit night cream all over face, followed by a thinner layer of the Tri-Activ Anti-Imperfection moisturizer. Use the Concentrate spot treatment as necessary.
(Makeup is the same as in this look, except I've swapped in Bobbi Brown lipgloss in Nude.)
I'm not sure how noticeable a change it has been to other people, but I definitely have noticed that my pores are less clogged and smaller, particularly in the T-zone. They're not perfectly smooth and invisible, but I suspect that's going to be an impossible dream. I have had way, way fewer (and also less-severe) breakouts than with my old skincare routine, and am generally less oily, though not entirely oil-free, as you will see. And sadly, I don't think it's done anything to change the natural redness of my skin, or the ridiculous length of time that it takes for marks to fade. So, without further ado, the makeup-free photo as promised.
(All pictures can be clicked and zoomed, if you feel like you want the gory details!)
This is me, very very early in the morning (before 7am, ugh!), still grumpy and with still-damp bedhead, but face freshly washed and toned.
As you can see, my skin is pretty smooth, with the only real problem spots on my cheeks (close to the nose) and my forehead, where I have large but mostly clean pores. There's also a good deal of redness, which is characteristic of my skin (as a pale person with pink undertones) and also made somewhat worse by morning face-scrubbing with hot water. (And no skincare routine is ever going to take care of my morning grumpiness. I can't even smile for my own camera!)
But after makeup application, a cup of Earl Gray, a thorough brushing of the hair, and about an hour's time, I look much more human, no?
This is my face at the end of a very, very long and hot day (half an hour's walk to town, about 7 hours in the library, an hourlong bellydance class, and then walking home again). As you can see, there's some oil and quite a lot of shine, but it's held up pretty well, and my skin still looks pretty good underneath. (It's only tinted moisturizer!) It's not great, but it's not terrible! (The lipgloss has looong since worn off, though!)
And after blotting with Bobbi Brown blotting papers:
Practically presentable! (The same cannot be said about my hair, but luckily this isn't a haircare post! :-p )
Final thoughts: I'm really pleased with the NormaDerm range, on the whole. I think it's made a significant change for the better in the texture and quality of my skin. It hasn't done a lot about redness, and it hasn't done away with oiliness entirely, but I'm not sure there exists a treatment that could cure me of either of those problems. I only have mild acne - and occasional stress-induced jawline acne - so I'm not sure how well it would deal with more severe skin problems; I can really only say that it's been great for *my* skin! But if you have similar sorts of problems - oil, clogged pores, mild-but-constant acne, blackheads (those have been almost completely eliminated!), some sensitivity - then I'd recommend NormaDerm very highly!