Growing up in muggy, tropical Singapore, I was locked in a never-ending struggle with humidity and 39-degree heat. The idea of adding extra hydration on top of the omnipresent layer of oil and sweat on my face? Unthinkable. But summer in London, where I live now, comes with the kind of dry, pollution-choked heat that sends my combination skin into overdrive. What kind of confused weather devilry is this? my epidermis furiously demands. Cue dry patches on my cheeks and under my eyes, spots on my jawline and, around my period, hormonal acne that triggers painfully deep, under-the-skin lumps right on my chin. And as summer turns into autumn, my skin starts registering the drop in temperature and triggers even more dryness and the occasional oversensitive, inflamed blotch.
Luckily, I’ve been obsessed with skin care ever since I picked up my first bottle of Clean & Clear cleansing lotion at the age of 12. I swerve heavy creams because I don’t want my T-zone to freak out, but I need something that hydrates the drier bits on my face. Over the years, I’ve found that my skin responds great to hyaluronic acid, so I’ve become a little bit of a connoisseur. I spent the last five years cycling through almost every hyaluronic acid serum you can think of, from High Street brands like the Ordinary to higher-end lines like Aurelia. Then in May, I landed on my holy grail product in British brand MediK8’s Hydr8 B5 serum. I encountered it browsing Instagram beauty accounts looking for something to replace my trusty hydraluron serum from Indeed Labs (mainly because it didn’t seem to be giving me my usual plumped glow), winced a little at the price tag and then decided to take a chance on it.
Other hyaluronic acid serums I’ve tried have been too tacky, too gooey, too smelly or just plain ineffective. But the MediK8 serum gave me instant results that saw me trying to push this onto friends, former colleagues and random Twitter users with the zeal of a religious convert. At £40 for a 30ml bottle, it isn’t cheap, but it is worth it. I bought the serum four months ago and I’ve still got about a third of a bottle to go. I only need a few drops to cover my entire face — it’s a clear, almost viscous liquid that sinks in fast and doesn’t leave any kind of sheen behind. I’m trying to simplify the amount of unnecessary chemical ingredients in my beauty regime, so the lack of any potentially irritating fragrance, parabens and phthalates is especially pleasing to me.
All of this would be meaningless, of course, if the serum didn’t work. But within a week of applying it religiously (morning and night, before moisturiser), I started noticing a real difference in the skin tone and texture of my face. I looked smoother and plumper than ever. In fact, my skin was downright juicy, like a particularly succulent peach or the bouncy cheeks of the cutest baby in the neighbourhood. Best of all, in the four months I’ve been using it daily, the crepey spots on my face look like they’ve gone through a soft-focus Instagram filter, but the oilier patches on my chin and forehead haven’t broken out.
Some other Medki8 products we like
Contributor Frankie May Wong says that Medik8’s zit gel is works wonders. She writes: “It’s pricey, yes, but it’s continued to stop other painful cysts from fully forming, all in less than eight hours. I’ve put it on underground zits when I get home from work, and then by the time I go to bed a few hours later, the throbbing bump is gone.”
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