*This review is not sponsored and I purchased all items myself
So I mentioned using the 2% BHA liquid here and touched upon my history with Paula Begoun of Paula's Choice (if you don't want to go back and read it, I basically said that I grew up with her book The Beauty Bible and thus I trust that she is making these products because she really knows her stuff and not because she's trying to make a quick buck). Paula also has a fairly well respected site that reviews beauty products called Beautypedia. So knowing all this I don't know why I didn't try her products earlier. I guess a part of it was just being dazzled by the bigger and flashier brands. But once I tried the Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid, I was a convert. So here are reviews of the first three items I've tried thus far.
1) Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid: So this was the first time I used BHA, which is a type of chemical exfoliant. I've used Salicylic Acid before for my zits with mixed results. So I didn't think this would work for me. But I gotta say it has really turned my skin around. It does help with the zits but more importantly, makes my skin really smooth. 2% may not sound like a lot, but for someone like me with really sensitive skin, 2% is enough. I actually use this 2-3 times a week instead of daily since when I used it daily I noticed some irritation. I've also noticed when I do use it consistently it helps with the redness of my skin. I also tried the 8% AHA gel sample that came with this and found that it did not help my skin and I prefer the BHA more. Both AHA and BHA are chemical exfoliants that do slightly different things. Read here if you want to know more about it. For $29, this is a great price for a really awesome product!
2) Resist Barrier Repair Moisturizer with retinol: This was the second product I tried from Paula's Choice (I tried both this one and the BHA liquid above on a random instagram story recommendation) and I again I was wary since I've tried retinols in the past (good for acne and wrinkles), but they've always irritated my skin too much. Looking at the ingredient list, I'm not sure how much retinol is in there but I think it's pretty minimal since I can handle using this daily. And again this lotion makes my skin feel so smooth. This has become my new daily moisturizer replacing the Elemis SOS cream I mentioned before. The Elemis cream didn't break me out but I didn't think it was improving the texture of my skin like this one does, and this moisturizer is $33 compared to the $85 for the Elemis one. It was kind of a no-brainer for me to switch.
3) Resist C15 Super Booster: So I tried this out on a recommendation from a reader after I talked about the BHA liquid in the Weekend Ramblings post. Sorry Sooji, but it didn't work for me >.< . About 3 minutes after I tried it, my skin got bright red and it started burning (and it was only on the right side of my face even though I spread it evenly on both sides--weird, right?). I guess it just goes to show that what works for one person doesn't work for everyone since our physiologies are all different (which is why when you read my beauty reviews, take it all with a grain of salt). Luckily I purchased it from Nordstrom and was able to return it. But this hasn't stopped me from wanting to try more of Paula's stuff! However, I'm going to hold off until I use up some of my other beauty items since I am trying to be more mindful of what I buy. When I use up a bottle of something, I might see if I can replace it from one of Paula's skincare lineup.
Anyway, if you've been looking for a gentle way to smooth out your skin and build some collagen, I recommend trying the Skin Perfecting BHA liquid and the Resist Barrier Repair Moisturizer. They are great for acne-prone sensitive skin like mine and definitely worth a shot. But buy it from Nordstrom's where you can return it though, just in case ;)
P.S. I have to eat my words above. I have learned by now that it's in my nature to go a bit overboard when I find a brand or product that I like (for example: Everlane) so I have purchased another 6 items from Paula's Choice (2 of which replaced my empty sunscreen, 4 of which are totally brand new products I've never used before and doesn't replace anything *facepalm*). Again I will review when I've used them all for a bit.