Going beyond the notion of the usual toner, a treatment lotion can do so much more for your skin.
THE benefits of a toner have long been debated in beauty circles, and the jury is still out as to whether it’s crucial to your skincare regimen. Some say it’s a necessary second step after cleansing as it acts as a double-cleanser, besides tightening the pores and paving the way for serums and moisturisers, while others say it’s a sheer waste of time and money.
In recent years, skincare companies have come up with a mildly tweaked version of the toner called a “lotion”. Not to be mistaken with a moisturiser which comes either in the form of a (thicker) cream texture or a (fluid) lotion, this is akin to a toner, but claims to offer slightly different benefits.
Most Japanese skincare brands refer to the toner as a lotion, and its sole purpose is to prepare the skin for better absorption of the serum or moisturiser that follows thereafter. Some brands, however, tout that there is a clear distinction between the two products.
For example, many toners tend to contain alcohol which acts as an astringent while lotions don’t contain any. Lotions also tend to be stickier and less fluid; they don’t evaporate and are supposed to lock in moisture for better hydration, are gentler on the skin and some even claim to restore the skin’s pH balance.
According to Estee Lauder, treatment lotion is a watery lotion that delivers skincare benefits and is typically the first step in a skincare regimen. Note that it’s not a toner and doesn’t have any cleansing properties. “Essence” refers to a lightweight, concentrated formula that penetrates quickly into the skin and delivers anti-ageing benefits, and this is usually followed by a moisturiser.
The brand’s latest innovation is the new Micro Essence Skin Activating Treatment Lotion, a high-performance “essence-in-lotion”. This means that while it’s a treatment lotion, it’s supposed to deliver much more.
“For the first time, we are able to deliver serum-like properties in a watery lotion to address the multiple signs of ageing to transform and strengthen skin at its foundation,” said Dr Nadine Pernodet, executive director of Skin Biology, Global Research & Development for The Estée Lauder Companies in a press statement.
The French New-York based Dr Pernodet is a key member of the team responsible for researching, developing and testing future technology for all global skincare products in the company. Her unique approach to skincare comes from her background in biophysics and biology, and she has been at the forefront of the research in Epigenetics.
“The terms essence and serum are often used interchangeably as they are both lightweight, concentrated formulas that penetrate quickly into skin and deliver powerful benefits to address skincare concerns.
“The micro-targeted, micro-nourishing and micro-active formula of the Micro Essence helps to create a healthy micro environment for the skin. It transforms the look of skin from the inside-out by helping to create a stronger, more resistant skin foundation for long-term benefits,” she added.
Inspired by the strength and resilience of extremophiles, nature’s “ultimate survivors”, Estée Lauder scientists created the new, exclusive Micro-Nutrient Bio-Ferment. This powerful concentrate combines the wisdom of modern science with the power of fermentation to activate skin’s multiple pro-youth functions. These multiple functions help to empower skin’s resistance to visible ageing signs and are initiated by Toll-Like Receptors, which are proteins in skin found on skin cells’ surface.
Extremophiles are living organisms that have an incredible natural ability to survive and thrive in the harshest of environments. New research has found that certain extremophiles derive their amazing ability from a natural, unique composition of micronutrients and peptides.
The Micro-Nutrient Bio-Ferment (comprising micronutrients and peptides) is touted to help transform and strengthen skin at its foundation. When skin has a strong foundation and is intensely hydrated, imperfections appear reduced and the skin emanates a glow from deep within.
The Micro Essence works in three ways:
> Micro-targeting: Penetrates rapidly and deeply within skin’s surface, saturating cells, and helping them to renew and rebalance.
> Micro-nourishing: Delivers a precise concentration of Micro-Nutrient Bio-Ferment, penetrating surface skin cells to nourish and energise.
> Micro-active: Activates multiple pro-youth functions to deeply replenish and “reset” the look of skin from within, immediately and in the long term.
The product is not meant to replace a repair serum, but rather, work in tandem with it. As the first step to prepare the skin after cleansing, it is claimed to improve product penetration for more moisture benefits to strengthen and repair skin.
There is no age exclusion for Micro Essence; however, Estee Lauder recommends that the younger a woman starts using it, the better. This is because Asian women tend to have a thinner moisture barrier than Caucasian women and are therefore more prone to moisture loss. As such, this would help Asian women keep their skin foundation strong from an early age.
According to Estee Lauder, tests on 600 Asian women in Asia after two weeks’ usage of the product revealed that 95% of women agreed that their skin felt hydrated, comfortable and healthier. After four weeks, 96% said their skin looked more supple, resilient and translucent with a more refined texture.
With consistent use, it is claimed Micro Essence results in better moisturised and calmer skin, a stronger skin barrier, reduced fine lines, and a vital, energised radiance.
Price: RM320 (150ml). Available at Estee Lauder counters nationwide.