Skinstitut L-Lactic Cleanser - review and photos

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You may have heard me mention that I picked up a few Skinstitut products last year. I'd been wanting to try the brand because I'd heard heaps about it online, plus Adore Beauty stocks Skinstitut products at a discounted rate and often has additional sales/GWPs to boot, so they won't break the bank.

So towards the end of last year, I made it my business to acquire a Skinstitut product or two whenever I saw a good promotion. I wanted to do this because, like my beloved Alpha-H, Skinstitut is Australian and it also uses active ingredients. That sounds like a brand I want to explore. 

The difference between them is that Alpha-H is a bit more expensive, although I have to say that, in my experience, this has also meant that comparable Alpha-H products are better than their Skinstitut counterparts - this cleanser included.


Skinstitut claims/product details:

  • Contains lactic acid to exfoliate and decongest the skin
  • Extracts of raspberry, goji berry and seaweed add moisture and radiance, and even skintone
  • A gentle foaming cleanser suitable for all skin types, but especially sensitive and irritated
  • Enriched with soya bean oil, vitamin e and panthenol
  • Deeply hydrates and nourishes
  • Exfoliates and decongests problematic skin
  • Reduces irritation and sensitivity
  • Strengthens skin integrity
  • To use: squeeze a pea-sized amount onto wet hands and lather over face for 30 seconds; rinse thoroughly with warm water and pat dry; perfect for daily use
  • RRP $45 AUD for 200ml, but do shop around (eg Adore Beauty sells it for $30 AUD)


Verdict

This is a nice product that's sold at a reasonable price, but I've compared it to two other lactic acid cleansers while I've been using it - one from Divine Woman and one from Alpha-H - and I like the other two better than this so it's not one I would buy (this tube came as a GWP).

It's a gel product that smells gently fresh and it's called a 'foaming cleanser', but it's not one of those crazy foaming products that feels irritating (it lathers more than foams).

To start with I was using this as directed - so applying it to my face with wet hands and then massaging it in for 30 seconds before rinsing it off - and I wasn't getting much love from it that way so I decided to stop using it each evening in the shower and instead I now use it in the morning.

What I'll do is go in with an oil or balm as my first cleanse, then I'll apply this and massage it in with wet fingertips before leaving it on my face for a few minutes. Then I'll go back in and add more water, massaging it again before removing it with a damp face cloth.

I get on with it better now. After use my skin feels smoother and looks brighter, which is exactly what I would expect from a lactic acid product, and I think it's having more of an impact on skin clarity too. Before trying this new method, I might as well have been using a plain old gel cleanser because it wasn't doing anything for me if I just followed the directions.

On the claims: yes I do think it exfoliates and decongests; yes I do think it adds radiance by removing the top layer of dead skin; yes I do think it's suitable for sensitive skin; and yes I do think it has a slight hydrating effect too.

The thing is, though, that it does none of those things as well as the two lactic acid cleansers mentioned above. I've done a mini review of the Divine Woman one here, but you'll have to wait for the Alpha-H review because I've only just started using that product - but already I can tell that it does more and works better overall than this one.

I must say, after using three Skinstitut products for a while and just introducing a fourth, my overall feeling of the brand is that its products are decent but not stellar. Perhaps if you've never used active ingredients before then this would be a good 'starter' brand - especially because you won't be investing heaps of money - but if like me you've been using active ingredients for a long time, then you might also find that these ones don't do enough.

So in sum, I like this product and I've found a way to get it to work for me, but I think you can do better and it's not a favourite. Still, you have to love that the full size is only $30 for a whopping 200ml.

Good but not great.


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