At some point, we've all purchased something whose results were, er, questionable, and didn't live up to our expectations or deliver the results we were so boldly promised. But no more! For the sake of you and your hard-earned money, The Huffington Post Canada Style team is putting the latest products to the test every week.
Testing: SkinCeuticals Pigment Regulator
Testing Period: Two and a half months
Tested By: Sarah Kelsey, Editor, Style
What It Is: A daily skin brightening treatment that promises to lighten and reduce hyperpigmentation and improve the overall tone of skin. It can also help with age spots.
How To: Apply the cream to hyperpigmented areas after washing your face and before applying your regular moisturizer.
What We Thought: I never break-out, my epidermis is never really oily and I have nary a wrinkle. What I do have is hyperpigmentation. I tan easily, so even though I wear SPF 30 on a daily basis, my skin still darkens in the summer. The problem now that I'm getting older is the delicate parts of my face have started to hyperpigment from damage (yes, in spite of my sunscreen use). It's left me with one dark spot under my eye and, I'm being very candid here, an embarrassing blotch under my nose.
The product itself is easy enough to use, and it doesn't smell or look funny (though the colour of the cream darkens over time -- that's normal). I applied it to affected areas morning and night, after washing my face and before slathering on moisture cream.
So did it work? Yes, the spots on my face are lighter, and I have some product left in the bottle, but the affected areas on my face aren't as light as I would like them to be (or expect them to be after regular use of a product). That being said, no other product has worked as well (of the many I've tried). And the company recommends using it for three months to see its true effects -- I've only been using it for two and a half. My mother has told me she's noticed a remarkable difference in how dark my "spots" are (meaning, they're lighter than they once were).
The Downfalls: My own impatience? I want things to work faster than they actually do.
Tips: Follow the instructions to a tee and always, always apply a heavy sunscreen to the areas you're treating. This product makes skin sensitive and you're apt to burn while using it. (No need to add to the skin damage you're trying to undo, right?)
Final Remarks: Forgoing my own impatience to dissolve my face's hyperpigmentation, I'd say this product is worth the investment. Follow the application instructions closely; this product works best when used consistently.
Do you have something you want us to test out? Let us know @HuffPostCaStyle.
Check out the other products we have put to the test.
Black 15In1: Twice A Week Miracle Shampoo
<strong>What We Thought:</strong> At first I was afraid of only washing my hair twice a week. I'm a wash every day kind of gal. And because Toronto has been 30+ degrees for the past month, I haven't stopped sweating -- this really affects what my hair looks like. Still, I tried this product -- and I liked it. While I wasn't able to cut my shampoo routine to twice a week if I was going out at night (I don't like going out with greasy-ish hair), this product was great for the work week. I could wake up after days of no shampooing and my hair would still look clean -- there were no signs I didn't wash my hair. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/07/16/twice-a-week-miracle-hair_n_1676365.html?1342543306#slide=1229602" target="_hplink">Read the post here.</a> <em>Tested by Associate Editor Meredith Gillies</em>
What We Thought: For someone who is the least crafty person on planet Earth, this was the easiest DIY I've ever attempted, and with good results. I'm unique in the fact that I bought second-hand jeans without checking first to see whether they would fit around my thighs and booty. So alas, I made jorts for a Cabbage Patch Kid-sized person, but they look really good otherwise. I'm really into the denim cut-off in the summer because of the ease of wearing it all the time. They are comfortable and look good with every shirt already in my closet. I bought white Levis because I thought it was something that my closet was lacking, but alas, they are too small. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/07/04/make-denim-cut-off-shorts_n_1647521.html" target="_hplink">Read the post here</a>
Live Clean De-Puffing Roller Eye Treatment
<strong>What We Thought:</strong> This de-puffing roller treatment came exactly at the right time. Summer for me, means late nights and early mornings which also means dark circles. I had high hopes for this rollerstick but unfortunately, I didn't see a change in the dark circles. However, I think these circles are engrained in my skin now. What I did really enjoy about it was how cooling it was every morning. After a long night out, it was a nice little treat every morning around my eyes. It didn't look greasy as some under-eye treatments do so that was a definite bonus. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/05/29/de-puffing-roller-eye-treeatment_n_1552605.html?utm_hp_ref=put-to-the-test" target="_hplink">Read the post here</a>
Ardell Self-Adhesive Lashes
<strong>What We Thought:</strong> At first I was weary about wearing fake eyelashes out in public (my daily beauty routine is super simple), but it was nice to have really thick and full lashes for a night out. They looked natural, and they looked great on my best friend who also tried a pair (she has shorter lashes than i do). I really liked the fact these lashes were self-adhesive -- I didn't have to deal with globs of glue accumulating on my lash line. I even slept in them -- they were still on and looking good in the morning! Pretty impressive. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/05/14/fake-eyelashes-put-to-the-test_n_1515534.html" target="_hplink">Read the story here</a>
Bumble And Bumble Surf Spray
<strong>What We Thought:</strong> I tested this product before bed and it gave my hair a perfect I-just-stepped-out-of-the-ocean-look. It's perfect for summer. Unfortunately, the look didn't last until morning, which means every a.m. you'll have to redo the above process if you want to maintain a seaside hairstyle. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/05/08/bumble-and-bumble-surf-spray-review_n_1499458.html" target="_hplink">Read the post here.</a>
Goody QuikStyle Paddle Brush
<strong>What We Thought: </strong>After using the brush four to five times I did notice a few things. For starters, it actually does the job of collecting excess water from your hair. I tried it once getting out of the shower and after drying my hair with a towel -- in both cases there was less water dripping from my hair and all over my clothes. Secondly, this brush does an amazing job of untangling locks. My hair is naturally straight so it only took me one to two strokes to achieve smooth straight hair. The brush is also very light, so you don't have to worry about it getting heavy as it fills with H2O.<br><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/04/16/goody-quickstyle-paddle-brush-_n_1428543.html" target="_hplink">Read the post here. </a>
Redken All Soft Argan-6 Oil
<strong>What We Thought: </strong>With the changing season, my hair tends to dry out. After using the oil about seven to eight times every other day (and washing my hair) I did notice my hair felt more hydrated and, generally, softer. My roots and ends were in better shape, too -- even after using a heated iron. The oil is very lightweight, which won't make your locks look or feel heavy.<br> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/04/12/redken-all-soft-argan-oil_n_1406543.html" target="_hplink">Read the story here. </a>
Rimmel Lash Accelerator Serum
<strong>What We Thought:</strong> My lashes are not that long in length and also tend to fall out. For the most part, I didn't notice any change in the length of my lashes, but they did feel thicker. When I applied regular mascara my lashes were fuller and after two weeks, fell out less.<br><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/04/02/rimmel-lash-accelerator-serum-_n_1397576.html" target="_hplink">Read the post here.</a>
LUSH's "No Drought" Dry Shampoo
<br><strong>What We Thought</strong>: If you're like me, your hair is destined to be oily. I often forgo conditioner or anything moisturizing for my hair. I also stay away from gels and hairspray. I wanted to use dry shampoo to save time and to avoid washing my hair everyday. For the most part, it worked -- and because it's LUSH, it smells fantastic.<br><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/12/12/lush-no-drought-dry-shampoo_n_1144935.html?ref=put-to-the-test" target="_hplink">Read the post here. </a>
Sephora's Nail Bling In Gold Bubbles
<br> <strong>What We Thought:</strong> It was fantastic to have the most blinged out nails at a party. It caught people's eyes and had them asking questions about "how" -- and sometimes "why" -- our nails got so bedazzled. Without nail polish underneath the stickers, the whole look seemed a little strange, though. <br><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/12/08/glamorama-nail-art_n_1088960.html?ref=put-to-the-test" target="_hplink">Read the post here. </a>
Broadway Nails imPress Press-On Manicure In Zebra Stripe
<br><strong>What We Thought: </strong>This was the easiest instant nail lift we've ever had. The entire process took about 10 minutes, and we didn't have to fret about trimming the press-ons in various shapes to fit our fingers (they were the perfect size!). Due to the sheer simplicity of the process, this pack is perfect for when you're running behind schedule and don't have time to actually paint your nails and wait for them to dry.<br> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/12/15/press-on-nails-test_n_1151056.html?ref=put-to-the-test" target="_hplink">Read the post here.</a>