Don’t we all dream of having a flawless picture perfect skin with that dewy pink natural blush? The standards of skin care and regimen differ globally but one thing is universally desirable; soft, supple and blemish-free healthy skin.

At some point, we all struggle with skin issues. I’ve never heard a woman satisfied with her skin, flaws are like the weapon every woman feels she is attacked with. Well, being a lady, I can often relate to instances of sudden breakouts or dull skin or sometimes patchy skin. The turning point for my skin was when I struggled to adapt to a new city, being an expat in Dubai it was tough battling the weather disparity. A few months back I was at my worst skin phase, I had sudden acne eruptions which acted really tough and refused to leave my sight. I tried most of the homemade skin remedies like honey, apple cider vinegar, nutmeg, tea tree oil, aspirin… (trust me the list is very very long). Acne reached a stage of embarrassment for me, but I limited the use of concealer or foundation since it could lead to further damage. I’ll walk you through the change of my skin routine which led to a better skin.

Dubai Summer Surprises keeps me on my toes on my free days, one such shopping spree led me to Debenhams beauty section and I noticed the Clinique range for combination oily skin. I was desperate to combat my acne but was highly skeptical since my skin is dry on the nose and chin area. I was then introduced to a mini 3 step kit.

Quick Fact- 21 days are required to know which products work and which don’t since we all have unique skin types, this is the time frame you can allot to judge what works best for you and how. (there isn’t any thumb rule when it comes to blending products of different brands).

I bought the 3-step kit to see how it works on my skin and with a hope that my skin would look vibrant and clear. It’s been almost 23 days I’ve been using this 3-step kit. (You can try different ranges available based on your skin needs.)

Step 1- Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Oily Skin Formula (Cleanse)

This facial wash was an instant love for me, a little tingly sensation and a minty feeling. It leaves my skin fresh and moist, I don’t experience excessive dryness. It works best on spot acne (if you have excessive acne then opt for the Clinique Acne Prone 3 step). The contents state that it’s for oily T-zone or overall oily skin, but I think more than anything it balances the skin. I’ve been using this twice a day and will continue buying this one.

Verdict: Where there is face wash, there is Clinique Combination Oily for me.

Step 2- Clarifying Lotion (Tone)

To start with, this toner has a very strong smell and may be a little too harsh for some, it has alcohol as its prime component which helps in reducing acne. It’s basically a step to prep your skin by getting rid of flakiness and excessive oil. A preparation to ensure hydration in step 3. I will give credit to this lotion for considerably helping me fight my acne. Though I wouldn’t say it’s completely gone, yes it does leave my skin feeling a lot better (I love the way my skin feels after using this). Simply pour a little on a cotton ball and Voila! sweep away the impurities.

Verdict: Clarifying Lotion twice a day keeps acne at bay.

Step 3- Moisturizing Gel (Moisturize)

To be honest, this was the most awaited product for me, I’ve heard so many people praise it and make it a part of their routine that I couldn’t wait to explore this one (It’s one of Clinique’s best seller after all). The texture is semi thick and a little oily, it isn’t a gel but like a lotion. Well, I would say it didn’t work for me, it made my skin excessively oily and sticky. I felt a little heavy after using this, though I cannot deny it balances the dry patches on my skin like my nose and chin area, however, the acne on my cheeks suffered in the process. Initially, I used it all over my face but now I only apply to the dry areas of my face. Though for some it’s a big ‘no-no’ but it worked better for me. Post step 2 I  apply the moisturizing gel on dry areas and spot cream prescribed by my dermatologist on my acne.

Verdict: Keep your moisturizing gel close but your facial soap and clarifying lotion closer.

Final Verdict: I’ll definitely be investing in the facial cleanser and clarifying lotion (toner), but the search for an ideal moisturizer continues. As for my acne, it’s not completely healed but I’m closer to my ideal skin. So, go ahead and get this three-step mini kit and give your skin a ‘clinique’ difference.

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