I had never really been one of those people who suffered from bad skin, breakouts, or a terrible T-zone until I moved to Abu Dhabi and, as if overnight, I turned into what can only be described as a walking pizza. Maybe it was a combination of my slightly heavy foundation and the fact that it was a sweltering 40 degrees+ every day, leaving me with the inevitable sweaty face syndrome. Or maybe it was something as simple as a change in the water.
Whatever it was, it took about a year to clear up. Even upon returning to the UK, my skin was red, dry, itchy and very prone to regular break-outs.
Having tried every product known to man, I was on the verge of giving up and accepting my inevitable fate of living with unsightly skin.
But then I met up with a friend who I hadn’t seen for some time, who also lived in Abu Dhabi and who had experienced the exact same thing as me. Only this time, she’d taken the smart (and slightly more expensive) route and booked in to see a dermatologist. He’d recommended she try, amongst other things, using Neutrogena’s range of skin products.
If it wasn’t for the fact that her face was positively radiant, spot-free and practically model-like… I probably would have gone ahead and bought Neutrogena’s whole range anyway… Like I said, I was willing to try everything.
Neutrogena’s spot stress control claimed to target spots before they’d even had a chance to appear. And for those that were already visible, it promised to penetrate deep within, unclogging and washing away excess oil and dirt as it did so. For me, the first use didn’t really live up to these expectations and the only thing I really liked was the gorgeous green tea and cucumber smell of the creamy lather.
However, as I have a tendency to judge products too quickly, I continued to use it for 2 weeks, once a night before I went to bed. I have to say that after 2 weeks, my skin was a whole lot clearer. The red, blotchy patches that seemed to be dispersed all over my face had majorly toned down and my skin was ridiculously smooth. The salicylic acid is apparently the secret ingredient in this wash, acting as a powerful anti-acne treatment. I have no idea what exactly salicylic acid is but its freaking awesome.
I have oily/combination skin so I am constantly on the lookout for oil-free products that won’t leave me looking like i’ve just plastered my face with the remnants of last nights stir-fry.
Neutrogena’s visibly clear spot clearing facial wash is dermatologist’s number 1 recommended acne-fighting cleanser. With the likes of Vanessa Hudgens and Kerry Washington frequently repping it as their number 1 go-to product for flawless skin, my inner idealist and materialistic-consumer decided to buy into what could potentially false advertising.
Again, this wash contains Salicylic Acid to get rid of both the acne you have now and help prevent future breakouts. Sadly, this product didn’t work quite as well for me as I had hoped and although my skin felt cleaner, it also felt incredibly dry and… sticky. The problem is that no matter how much water you apply with this lather, it just doesn’t seem to spread evenly, leaving your entire face feeling like a prick-stick. This then had a knock-on effect when I applied my make-up, as I was left with darker patches of foundation which had built up over the sticky areas. Bloody nightmare! As I said though, I have oily/combination skin and so you may find that the product works differently if you have a different type of skin.
If you are going to try either products, I would suggest you do so before you go to bed so they have a bit of time to settle overnight and I would also recommend allowing a space of around 2 weeks before you can expect to see any noticeable results.