Skin Care Gratification: A Study in Patience & Vanity
Skincare is the perfect example of the modern consumer’s lack of patience and eternal quest for instant gratification. In reality, no product heals infections overnight, eliminates lines completely or quells blemishes in a matter of days. There are some services, however, that either provide an instant glow or with ongoing use, plumper, calmer skin. Among these are the oxygen facial, something I experienced thanks to Aussie luxury skincare brand Intraceuticals.
Started by serial entrepreneur Anthony McMahon, the brand fits in both the science-based and luxury skincare categories, and caters to a variety of concerns from lines associated with aging, to blemishes tied to adult acne. McMahon proves his prowess by demonstrating that he understands the best way to launch a successful business is to farm out different operations to people with more experience. This resulted in the hiring of celebrity skincare professional and healer Michelle Peck and beauty business guru Deirdre Burke. While the former is known for keeping A-listers such as Madonna and Gwyneth Paltrow smooth and radiating, the latter is known for helping to catapult major beauty ingredients, such as vitamin C and mineral makeup.
I was lucky enough to hear about the brand from Burke and have an oxygen facial from Peck. Peck’s skills are top notch and upon observing a comparison, after the oxygen facial was complete on one side of my face, I couldn’t kill the ear-to-ear grin on my face because the results are pure magic. The treatment calms redness, plumps up the skin and results in a beautiful, even-tone glow. Talking to Peck, however, showed me that her skills might not be the only reason “M” keeps her close by. She has the knowledge and wisdom about living healthy and the grounding of an individual who has lived many lives and found a successful path. It’s the practice of healthy eating, exercise, and eastern and western medicine, as well as her skincare expertise, that make Peck an amazing ambassador for this brand.
Center to this brand is the use of high grade hyaluronic acid. But, anyone that knows skincare understands that the medium is truly the message–transmission is as important as any ingredient because if the product cannot get past the first layer of skin, nothing much else matters. The treatments are effective because the “therapeutic-grade oxygen under pressure” helps transmit the other ingredients, such as those in the serum, including low-weight hyaluronic acid and vitamins and anti-oxidants.
Starting with the Rejuvenate line, the company employs a bit of salicylic acid, green tea, glycerin, and vitamin C for what appears to be a collection that moisturizes, combats lines and provides a barrier to shield the skin from moisture loss. The eye gel is refreshing and according to the company, is said to be a cult favorite for smokers. For those without any major lines or blemishes, Rejuvenate seems to be a great line to moisturize skin and prevent further aging or environmental damage.
For a bit more TLC, however, with a focus on hyperpigmentation, the Opulence line is a must-have. The combination of arbutin and vitamin C to lighten, hyaluronic acid and squalene to hydrate, and vitamin E to help fight free radicals results in a soothing product that is just moisturizing enough and regulates skin tone, by calming red areas by blocking the enzymes that stimulate discoloration. This was achieved by using the cleanser once a day, at night, followed by the hydration gel, and the cream in the morning. But that wasn’t a result achieved alone.
I began using Intraceuticals products after quitting birth control after 10 years. Any woman knows this results in yoyoing of hormones which leads to frequent breakouts, all weeks of the month. Peck told me to expect this hormonal side effect for months, while the body adjusts. This led me to the realization that I might not have given most products the time required to truly assess their efficacy. So I gave these products a few months. With the exception of a few holiday weekends and the random mask, I only used Intraceutical products. Beginning with the new adult acne line, Clarity and switching to Opulence, I was able to regulate my skin, with a just a few random blemishes. Regular use of the clarity cleanser, followed by the treatment gel twice a day, and the blemish repair wand to treat on the go. At the heart of clarity is a combination of ingredients that cut inflammation and sebum production, and kill bacteria that cause acne. The product line also helps to regulate cell turnover, which results in healthier pores.
Using these products made me realize that no item, however effective or strong, makes one immune to the demand for a good moisturizer each morning. I am now a fan of the Opulence Brightening Cream, partially because the brightening complex does add that indescribable glow and offers to perfect base for a light coat of makeup, mainly undereye concealer, cream (try Body Shop) or powder blush (try Mistura), a neutral shadow (try Alima or Estee Lauder) and a coat of black mascara.
These items are a bit pricey, with a range of about $39-149. However it’s important to remember that a product’s price takes into account not just the ingredients and packaging, but the research involved to create the item and the salaries of the people running the company. Click here to learn more about Intraceuticals or to buy products.