I’ve been searching for the perfect solution to my skin breakouts and blemishes and since there are so many skin systems out there with weird chemicals and acids, I decided to go down the natural route with Dr Hauschka’s Daily Face Care Kit for Oily Skin.
My skin complaints date from when I moved to London almost two years ago from Newcastle and many of my friends have blamed the hard water and excess pollution and stress for changes in their own skin.
I popped in to Zest Pharmacy in Soho, a proper neighbourhood chemist, which stocks an excellent range of natural, specialist and French skincare brands. I had a long chat with one of the owners, a French lady who knew pretty much everything about skincare and had luminous skin to prove it.
She showed me starter kits by La Roche-Posay, Murad, Vichy and Caudalie, but recommended Dr Hauschka for its homeopathic approach to solving skin problems.
I’ve been using the Hydra Medic skincare system by Repechage for about nine months, which I roadtested for ELLEuk.com, but after initial good results, it seems to have dried my skin out. The Repechage Beta Hydroxy Serum is a great overnight treatment, as it smoothed out all the tiny bumps on my forehead, but the Mattifying Moisturiser is a horrible bright white that made my skin feel tight and uncomfortable.
At just £15 for six travel size products, I thought I’d give it a try and see if I have more luck without the drying chemicals I’ve been relying on for so many years.
The Daily Face Care Kit for oily skin consists of a Cream Cleanser, Clarifying Toner and Normalising Day Oil to be used instead of a moisturiser, as well as three weekly treatments – a Facial Steam Bath, Cleansing Clay Mask and a Revitalising Mask.
On the first day of the trial, I took some time out to do the whole seven step system with all of the products. I expected the Cleansing Cream to be smooth and rich, but it had an oatmeal consistency that gently exfoliated my skin without drying it. The Clarifying Toner felt refreshing and calmed my skin with extracts of calendula, witch hazel and daisy.
Having used oil-free products for so long and having an almost pathological fear of getting an oily T-Zone, I was sceptical about using the Normalising Day Oil. I could just imagine my make-up slipping off and suffering a greasy face all day, but I was amazed at how quickly the oil was absorbed. It’s important to get the right amount and I found that two drops was enough to cover my face.
Dr Hauschka’s skin regime is completely different to any other I’ve tried, as he doesn’t believe in using exfoliators or night creams, as they upsets the natural rhythm of your skin, thus clogging pores and making your skin increasingly dependent on products.
It’s all about normalising skin and making it learn again how to repair itself biologically. I’m still unsure about putting so much trust in my own body to rid itself of the blemishes, as it’s been a bit of a bitch so far, but picking and choosing various harsh and expensive products is probably what’s given it the hump in the first place.
Once a week, you should give your skin an intensive treatment of steam, deep pore cleansing and radiance revealing. The Facial Steam Bath has a subtle, herbal scent and helps open pores and detoxify skin. Add a few table spoons to a sink full of boiling water, cover your head with a towel and breath in the aromatic steam for five to seven minutes. Afterwards, my skin, chest and head all felt opened and I instantly had more energy.
Immediately after steaming, you’re supposed to add a thin layer of the mustard-coloured Cleansing Clay Mask and keep your face moist for up to ten minutes (I forgot and my face felt tight and rigid, like it was covered in cement). After washing it off, I applied the Revitalising Mask, which felt luxurious but not too rich and had a relaxing aroma.
Dr Hauschka’s regime can be a bit of a faff, as they expect you to have an endless supply of clean muslin cloths – cotton wool just won’t cut it, as it absorbs the skin’s natural oils – and enough time in the morning to steam said cloths in between cleansing steps. However, it is good advice and it just requires a bit more effort and perseverance.
So on day two, I don’t have that tight, under-nourished feeling on my face and haven’t experienced any more painful breakouts, apart from a few spots when the steam and masks brought out the impurities. I’m impressed so far, but will post updates after a week and when I finish the starter kit.
Zest Pharmacy, 18 Broadwick Street, Soho, London, W1F 8HS