Gentle K-Beauty Acne Treatments
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Gentle K-Beauty Acne Treatments

By Kate Limond
31/07/2023 | Read time: 5m

These two products are a match made in heaven!

Why did I try these two products?

I try a lot of k-beauty products as you can probably tell from the amount of reviews I write! A lot of products are great, they work very well and acne breakouts are few and far between.

When I wrote about the A’pieu Madecassoside Sleeping Mask, I talked about how it reduced my reactivity and irritation.

Whilst the A’pieu has many calming ingredients, I suspect it’s the shea butter that had the biggest effect.

However, I do get some acne from shea butter, which I noticed also happens with other products that have shea butter. If something breaks you out, it’s best to avoid that product or ingredient. For me, though, the reduction in irritation is well worth the acne for me, especially as it isn’t painful or very noticeable.

I barely use actives on my sensitive neck and chest, apart from the Isntree C-Niacin Toning Ampoule, which has been great in the past but hasn’t helped this particular type of breakout.

Bakuchiol is a very gentle active so I thought the HaruHaru was worth a shot for my neck and chest – although I didn’t see any acne reducing effects until I added the Benton too – now the acne is barely there at all thanks to this k-beauty item!

HaruHaru Wonder Black Rice Bakuchiol Eye Cream

Texture

This is exactly the kind of lightweight and soft-feeling texture I’d want for an eye cream, although admittedly I’m using it on my neck!

It spreads nicely and I strongly suspect one pump is enough for your whole eye area – I’m using two pumps for my neck and chest.

Ingredients

There’s a good combination of hydrating and moisturising ingredients to keep your eye area plump.

As well as a host of antioxidants, it has rice extract and niacinamide for brightening, which is ideal for the eye area.

The star of the show is the bakuchiol: it’s a plant-based alternative to retinol which is gentle to the skin.

As this article states:

“it is may even be multifunctional, as it appears to help with wound healing and skin regeneration”

Experience

I can definitely attest to the HaruHaru cream being gentle. As usual, I started slowly – once a day every few days and then building up to twice a day.

Unlike retinol, bakuchiol isn’t reported to make your skin more sensitive to the sun so it can be used in the morning but definitely use sunscreen to be safe and we all use sunscreen anyway so that’s a no-brainer.

If you’re acne-prone, you may want to patch test it carefully, as with any new k-beauty product. I’ve read that the eye area can be drier than the rest of the face but it’s a very individual thing. You could always just use this at night if you do have oily skin.

Because bakuchiol increases skin cell turnover like retinol, it’s likely the the anti-acne effect is because it’s making my skin get rid of the acne more quickly, clearing out my pores!

It takes longer to show effects on wrinkles and I’ve been using it just long enough to start seeing a subtle effect here. For more on how long products take to work, you can read Safina’s informative article on this subject.

Whilst my neck and chest doesn’t wrinkles as such, I am a side-sleeper and I get creases from that.

I can’t sleep on my back because of snoring so I live with the creases… but I’m suspecting that the HaruHaru is helping to plump out the skin so the creases are more subtle!

Benton Deep Green Tea Lotion

Texture

This is a super lightweight lotion which is very pleasant to use.

It spreads easily and dries to a smooth finish – I write more on this below so I won’t say too much here!

Ingredients

As you’d expect, there’s a good amount of moisturising ingredients and a whole host of green tea extracts, which is great because:

“topical application of green tea extract may be very beneficial in reducing excessive sebum production and two independent clinical studies proved its effectiveness”

And as an extra bonus, it has soothing centella asiatica extract – which I always like to see in an ingredients list.

Experience

Because green tea plays a role in reducing sebum production, I’d always assumed it might dry out my skin, despite finding the Beauty of Joseon Calming serum hydrating.

And yet my neck isn’t drying out at all! I think that Benton has balanced this product with a good amount of oil to counteract any drying effects.

The Benton is a remarkable product for several reasons.

The antioxidant content of the green tea really helps calm inflammation and I’ve mentioned its effect, alongside the k-beauty HaruHaru, on acne for me

What is even more impressive, as if those benefits weren’t enough, is that it dries impeccably.

I use quite a lot of oily feeling products on my neck – Isntree Yam Root Vegan Milk toner, Dr Ceuracle Vegan Kombucha Tea essence, HaruHaru Wonder Black Rice Bakuchiol Eye Cream and Etude House Soon Jung 2x Barrier Intensive cream.

Although my neck needs the oil, I want my AM routine to be efficient so there’s not always the time to allow everything to dry perfectly before I move onto the next step.

However, since adding the Benton, it wraps around the previous layers, adhering them to my skin and smoothing over the oil so I don’t have any oily residue – and it does it almost immediately! By the time I’ve applied my eye makeup, five minutes after I’ve finished my routine, everything has absorbed to a smooth finish and I’m good to put on sunscreen.

And it’s doubly impressive for the price of the Benton and the size of it – a huge 120ml.

Final Word

Whilst acids are the best defense against acne, if you’re very sensitive, these two k-beauty products might help!