Five Beauty Products That Changed My Skin

5 best skincare products

A new video for you here, but as it’s proved to be such a popular one already I’ll give you a bit of an extended blurb. The Five Beauty Products that Changed My Skin has a slightly confusing title, I suppose, because it’s more about the five “types” of product that have changed my skin.

Each product in the video holds a special place in my beauty-lover’s heart; Emma Hardie’s Moringa Balm was the first cleanser that truly made me think of cleansing as a luxurious experience, Effaclar Duo helped me greatly with my adult acne many years ago, Liquid Gold was the first high-performance product that I tested thoroughly (it blew my mind), Medik8’s Crystal Retinal 6 paved my way into a more clued-up retinol-testing era and Hydraluron was the first serum that made me research (and fully appreciate the powers of) hyaluronic acid.

5 best skincare products

So they were the products that opened my eyes, if you will, to certain skincare techniques and ingredients. Cleansing balms for getting that thorough, silky, beautiful cleanse. Salicylic acid (Effaclar Duo and Paulas’s Choice Skin Perfecting Liquid) for treating acne and breakouts in a very soothing and effective way. Glycolic acid (Liquid Gold, Pixi Glow, lots of different peel pads and masks and creams) for that overnight glow that just blows your mind. Retinol (Medik8) for the most comprehensive hit-every-sign-of-ageing-with-it solution you’ll probably ever try. Hyaluronic acid for hydrating and plumping without having to add any heavy oils or overly rich creams…

5 best skincare products

All of the details are listed below the video screen, but it’s well worth watching me talk through the skincare choices (if I do say so myself!) to get more of an idea as to whether these types of ingredients might be something you’d like to try. Do leave your comments and questions, whether you type them below or underneath the video on Youtube – I’d love to know which products you think have had a great effect on your skin…

(links marked * are affiliate links, for more info see disclaimer below post)


Emma Hardie Moringa Cleansing Balm, £47 at FeelUnique*

see also: 

Clinique Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm, £24 at Clinique


Paula’s Choice BHA Skin Perfecting Liquid: 

Trial Size, £8 at LookFantastic*

Full Size, £22.10 at Paula’s Choice*

La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo, £10.66 at Escentual*


Alpha-H Liquid Gold, £33 at Cult Beauty*

see also:

Pixi Glow Tonic, £14.40 at Lookfantastic*

see also: 

L’Oreal Glycolic Peel Pads, £14.99 at Amazon*


Medik8 Crystal Retinal 6 £59 at Medik8

see also: 

First Aid Beauty Retinol Serum, £48 at FeelUnique*


Indeed Labs Hydraluron Serum, £24.99 at Boots*

DISCLOSURE POLICY. Posts published after 24th January 2019: if the post contains gifted items or affiliate links then it is indicated clearly beneath the title. Posts published prior to this will have a disclosure within the body of the post and then an asterisk * marking all affiliate links. If the content is a paid-for AD then it is marked as an AD in the title. For more information on disclosure please read here. 



  1. May 23, 2019 / 9:04 am

    Great article
    Thanks for sharing this great beauty products

  2. Karen
    April 29, 2019 / 9:02 pm

    Hi Ruth Really late to this but felt the need to comment. This has to be the best explanation of these products I have ever read. Simple and to the point. Thank you -thank you.

  3. March 29, 2019 / 6:14 pm

    Azelaic acid made all the difference for me and my redness + acne prone skin.
    Specifically from the Polish brand Hascoderm Lipogel.
    That and a decent hydration routine.

  4. December 6, 2018 / 9:21 am

    I love Medik8. I use it too.

  5. carey
    December 4, 2018 / 6:40 pm

    I recently tried Alumiers retinol at the lowest % they create and I looked burnt. Which is odd for me as I have had peels and the like and never had a reaction like this. Regardless, it took me 5 days to look less hot mess pink. As such I wonder what % of retinol in in your picks


  6. November 8, 2018 / 2:24 pm

    My whole skincare routine is comprised of Korean skincare products but I think I’ll make space for the paulas choice one haha it’s also a decent price. Thanks for the recommendations!

  7. Elsa
    October 28, 2018 / 12:02 am

    Dear Ruth,
    Thank you for this post. I have purchased the La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo. Do you use this together with oils and/or the hydraluron. Love the hydraluron but now am a bit confused how to combine.

    Many thanks in advance,

  8. October 26, 2018 / 6:39 am

    never heard of these, but will surely gonna try ’em out.

  9. October 24, 2018 / 9:44 pm

    I am going to have to make a note of these and try them out for myself!

    Danielle xx

  10. Trudy
    October 24, 2018 / 8:47 am

    I was using a retinol product until recently, as I had heard such great things about it. It did work well to treat the wrinkles around my eyes, but I started noticing some darkish patches like freckles appearing around my eyes. I never connected the two things until one day when I realised that the dark spots were only appearing where I used the retinol cream! I googled it and apparently, the inflammatory response that retinol causes, can cause the skin to produce dark hyperpigmentation. It’s not very common but I still think it should be something more people are aware of! Thankfully my spots are not too noticeable and I’m hoping they will fade in time.

  11. Helen Ruth
    October 23, 2018 / 2:32 pm

    I love this post! I first came across your blog when I started with adult acne a few years ago and I immediately went out and bought the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo on your recommendation. I have since been through numerous tubes of this and have recommended it to so many people. Thankfully my skin is much better now and I love trying out new skincare products (a *slight* obsession which my husband really doesn’t understand!). I have tried every product mentioned on this blog, apart from the Medik8 Crystal Retinol, which I am keen to try. The Clinique take the day off balm is one of my absolute favourites (I have 3 currently in reserve), as is the Paula’s Choice BHA liquid. Thank you for all your recommendations and honest reviews xx

  12. Helene
    October 23, 2018 / 3:56 am

    Yikes! Hydraluron is expensive in the UK!! Here it is about 20 Canadian dollars (=12 pounds). Yeah Canada! Helps that Indeed Labs is a Canadian brand… UK and European brands are quite expensive though… try buying Elemis here.

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