It is rare that I write a post in the first person or, for that matter, reference my own convoluted dermatological woes. But given that this is a blog, and blogs are designed for confessional writing, I should probably tell you about my chronic allergies – the kind of sensitivities that trigger eczema, angry flare ups and the occasional rash on my face. Not a strong look. Especially for someone that’s supposed to be a health and grooming editor on glossy magazines.
This summer my hay fever reached epic proportions. I don’t know whether to blame a new strain of pollen or London’s pollution or my ever-changing immunity. But this year I’m struggling. So much so that, in addition to the usual sneezing and itching, I’ve acquired a chronic case of dermatitis. Red blotches and raised bumps dot my forehead and the tops of my cheeks. The skin on the back of my neck is red and raw. My skin is not happy and topical solutions– even the supposedly ‘clean’, dermatologist-approved ones – only seem to exacerbate the condition.
A new moisturiser by Bio-Extracts has been sitting on my shelf for two months now, a fantastic 100% vegan formula devised by the innovative brains behind luxury skincare brand NuBo (and which is about to go on sale later this month). At £27 for the moisturiser, this range is a stark departure from their usual budget-free approach to skincare. But that’s not say they’ve scrimped on technology. At the heart of the formulation is lamellar technology, something you’re likely to hear more about in the coming months. And it is this lamellar technology that has played a central role in making me look a little less like a Sith Lord.
For the uninitiated, lamellar systems essentially mimic the structure of the outermost layer of the skin, which, in healthy bodies, retains moisture while protecting against aggressors. For many people – and by many people I mean me – environmental stress can compromise the structure of this layer. The lamellar system in the Bio-Extracts Moisturiser (available in normal, light or rich concentrations) restores the integrity of the skin by creating a tiny patchwork of liquid crystals across its surface. In other words, it creates a second skin that protects and repairs.
Added to this are a series of innovative ‘boosters’, which you can mix and match with the moisturiser, allowing you to create a bespoke formulation in your own home. The boosters are super-charged 100% vegan serums that deliver active ingredients in exceptionally high concentrations. Each booster targets a specific skincare concern from wrinkles and dehydration to acne and redness.
I tried and tested Bio-Extracts (against a £100+ ‘miracle broth’ from one of the most coveted luxury skincare lines, no less) and the results were phenomenal. Inflammation was noticeably reduced, red patches calmed down in hours and, after a few reapplications, the flaking and dryness started to subside too. I mixed the light moisturiser with the ‘redness relief’ booster (sometimes the antioxidant booster depending on how bad things were that day) and, in three days, my skin improved by a good 80%. This is without the assistance of hormone-disrupting drugs or steroid creams that most allopathic doctors would recommend for a condition like mine.
And so this post is something of a personal endorsement. If you struggle with sensitive skin, allergies or have reacted badly to ‘high-tech’ skincare in the past, I can’t recommend this range enough. Bio-Extracts is premiering on QVC on the 27th July and is available via bio-extracts.co.uk.