Thursday, 6 July 2017

My Battle with Congested Skin Part 2...Introducing Jordan Samuel etOILe with Retinol

If you follow me on IG you will have probably seen this sleek black bottle appear in many of my routines…. allow me to introduce Jordan Samuel etOILe with Retinol, your new best friend.

Anyone who is familiar with Jordan Samuel has probably already tried his antioxidant packed facial oil etOILe (if you haven’t you must!! My review here), this is essentially the same formula but with the inclusion of 0.2% retinol. The only other differences are that this treatment oil doesn’t have CQ10, Vitamin C and Squalane which the etOILe oil has.  

Back in April when I had the pleasure of meeting the man himself, and many others from the IG ‘Skincare Community’ at the Jordan and Jane (Scrivner) Event, this was on my list to purchase directly from him. I had been waiting to get my hands on this as soon as it was released, which luckily for me wasn’t long before the event, so I didn’t have to wait too long! I hadn’t had much experience with retinols other than a sample of Sunday Riley Luna, which to be honest didn’t rock my boat due to the added colourings and high price tag. I knew I wanted to delve into the world of retinol and knew that I wanted to start with this.

The reason being, the formula is gentle but is still designed to pack a punch with consistent use. Consistent being the word. Over time low percentages of retinol used frequently can contribute to reduction and tightening of pores as well as firming the skin and improving elasticity. Vitamin A (otherwise known as retinol) is known to help the skins structure and assist in reversing damage caused by ‘free radicals’ which are essentially organic molecules that are responsible for skin aging and tissue damage. These can be formed through natural physiological processes (breathing and breaking down food) as well as from the environment and can be a result of pollution, cigarette smoking, stress, diet, drugs etc, so prevention is better than cure. Retinol is big business in the anti-aging world and I can totally see why. Paired with other antioxidants such as Vitamins C and E there is a good chance you can prevent cellular damage and if topically applied and consumed regularly antioxidants can neutralise free radicals thus preventing them from causing more damage. Magic!

Initially I wanted to include retinol purely for anti-aging purposes, at the age of 26 I knew I needed to jump on the bandwagon if I want to look like Susan Sarandon at 70! In addition to that I had high hopes of it assisting with getting rid of PIH (post inflammatory hyper-pigmentation) which wasn’t fading as quickly as I’d like. Roll on a couple of months down the line, I was faced with the most congested skin I’d had in a long while and this is when I realised I had a gem in my hands…

Due to the low percentage of retinol and it being oil based I started using this every other night straight away. Some people build up usage but I knew my skin loved etOILe and it had responded well to SR Luna, so I was sure it would be ok. I’m pleased to confirm I wasn’t wrong :)

On the nights I use this I like to keep my routine fairly simple and gentle, so as to get the maximum benefit from the treatment. I’ve played around using other oils, balms and moisturisers on top but to be honest I find it most effective when used on its own as a final step. I prep by cleansing and applying a hydrating serum (ideally Jordan’s hydrate) and then massaging 4-5 drops directly over the top and pressing it into the skin. The addition of a hydrating serum is a must for me as it gives a buffer, minimising any potential irritation and boosts the performance of the retinol action. It absorbs just as well as etOILe and has an identical texture in my opinion, leaving no stickiness or oiliness to the skin. It layers extremely well with any other product I’ve tried underneath/over the top and I haven’t experienced any dreaded piling.

Upon application, it makes skin glow. But the real magic seems to happen when I’m asleep. If I hit the pillow with any small lurking spots it seems to zap them overnight and gives an overall healthier, plumper appearance to my skin come morning.

I have been using this retinol for just over 2 months with consistent use, and feel confident in saying it has benefitted my skin in more ways than one. In earlier June, I removed regular use of facial oils out of my routine (see my previous post here) and just solely used this. That’s where I began to see real results. My congestion started to decrease fast and any under the skin lumps I had were healing much quicker leaving no scarring behind. During my bout of ‘unruly skin’ I had a period of purging where some of the congestion came to the surface. This in turn created quite a few spots dotted mainly around my chin, cheek and jawline areas. At the time, I felt rather overwhelmed and unsure of how to deal with it. But instead of doing what I would usually do (throw a ton of products at it in the hope of clearing my skin fast, we’ve all been there!) I decided to take a more sensible approach. I stripped my routine back to basics and picked a few products to be consistent with. This being one of them, and my skin is all the better for it. I actually enjoy the simple but effective routine on the days when I incorporate this, and look forward to waking up knowing my skin will always look better than it did the night before. 

In addition to the above there has been an improvement in existing PIH but I wouldn’t go as far as saying it has faded it completely. Yet… I am hopeful that in the months to come I will see a bigger change in that area. Overall so far, I would say the biggest noticeable changes are that it has smoothed out the texture of my skin, created a more uniform brighter look and decreased the amount of congestion I usually have. Much better results than I had expected…

Over the coming months, I will potentially start to use this every night with another moisturiser or oil to see how my skin fares, as I have not suffered with any side effects in the form of redness, dryness or flakiness with this. I know a certain percentage of people can suffer with those issues as result of a stronger more potent retinol, but I honestly couldn’t be dealing with that even if it turns me into a goddess months down the line! There is no way I could persevere with something that burns my face off and causes my skin to peel like a snake!  

In my opinion this formula is a fantastic starting step into retinol, I think it would work well for all ages but perhaps suited to a more younger skin (25-35’s) that is looking to prevent rather than cure when it comes to aging. In the long-term retinol is known to increase cell turnover and stimulate collagen production, leaving skin plumper, creating a more refined appearance. With that considered I’m still not sure how effective a gentle retinol like this one would be at reducing deep wrinkles and lines. I would say if your target is to improve skin texture, reduce congestion, slow down the aging process and reduce the appearance of fine lines, then this is a must for you. But if you suffer with severe PIH, scarring, sun-damaged aging skin then maybe something a little stronger would give you better quicker results.

Packaging wise, I love the black and white design but that’s not just for show, the miron glass gives it a shelf life of around 6 months to 1 year (if I remember rightly). On the basis it’s kept in a cool environment. Preferably a fridge. I personally can’t be arsed to have to remember to take it out before walking up the stairs! So choose to keep it in a dark area of my bathroom. I would recommend only buying a retinol product that is packaged in an opaque container anyway, as that will eliminate its exposure to air and light. Otherwise the formula will break down and deteriorate.


Organic Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Argania Spinosa (Argan) Kernel Oil, Sclerocarya Birrea Seed (Marula) Oil, Vaccinium Macrocarpon (Cranberry) Seed Oil, Organic Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Oil, Rosa Canina Fruit (Rosehip) Oil, Organic Hippophae Rhamnoides Fruit (Seabuckthorn) Oil, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Retinol, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E).

So, there you have it! My new favourite addition to my skin routine! It is a powerhouse of a product which holds so many benefits, and at $43 for 30ml I think it’s extremely fair priced. Those of you that are Jordan supporters will already know this, but it can only be purchased directly from his website in the US. Link here

Also, if you don’t already, I would highly recommend following Jordan on Youtube. His videos are extremely informative and he is bloody hilarious! Link here

Have you tried a retinol in oil? I would like to try Pestle and Mortar Superstar next to see how it compares but will re-purchase this at some point for sure!

Thanks for reading xx


No comments

Post a Comment