Skincare Review: Biologique Recherche P50T
Beauty editors and industry experts swear by Biologique Recherche's Lotion P50 for its skin-perfecting abilities and it's been described as a miracle in a bottle. We had to find out if this cult favourite lives up to its reputation.
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What it is: P50 is not a lotion in the traditional sense – more of a toner if you will, formulated to exfoliate, hydrate, regulate sebum secretion and balance the skin. Its devotes call it a magic potion and say it imparts a gloss to their skin.
There are six variants of the P50, each tailored to suit specific skin types and concerns. The original version called P50 1970 contains a controversial ingredient called phenol; a compound that can cause chemical irritation and has been banned from use in skin care products in many countries, including Singapore. You won’t find it in any of the other lotions.
P50T is the mildest of the range and recommended for all skin types, especially sensitive or delicate Asian skin.
Like the original and all the other versions, P50T is rich in anti-inflammatory active ingredients. In addition to exfoliants like lactic acid and cider vinegar to remove dead cells and impurities; it contains ingredients like niacinamide, horseradish and burdock extracts that strengthen and soothe the epidermis. In other words, potion in a lotion.
Hyperbole or truth? Two Dulu panel members put Lotion P50T to the test.
Review 1: Dr Lucy Davies-Beh
Skin type: Sensitive, combination
Ingredients: No issues with the ingredients.
Application: I have been applying this product at night, by itself and only in combination with Khiel's Midnight oil, as it seems to react with the Sulwhasoo products I usually use. It stings slightly almost every time I put it on, which I would usually worry about and expect redness because my skin is so sensitive, but surprisingly, it actually takes away the redness of my skin instead and I wake up the next morning with clear skin. It doesn't smell pleasant initially but the smell quickly disappears – especially after the midnight oil, which smells great...and the effects have been surprising.
Packaging: It’s hygienic to use with no chance of bacteria transfer.
Efficacy: After one week my skin was noticeably clearer and more radiant, it also appears to be more balanced and I have needed less and less foundation/concealer to hide redness (there's no getting away without concealer for eye bags though!).
The Verdict: Surprisingly good. I would buy it again.
Review 2: Lydia Ng
Skin type: Rosacea-prone, combination
Ingredients: It’s alcohol and fragrance-free, great news for anyone who has reactive skin like mine. All the other ingredients are also clinically proven to help rosacea-prone skin.
Application: There was some tingling the first few times I used it, but that went away after a couple of days. It didn't cause any redness, surprisingly. While testing it out, I always followed up with La Mer’s eye concentrate and BR’s Crème Verte Espoir, and the combination worked fine.
Packaging: It comes in a chic, pill-like plastic bottle and deserves a spot on your beauty shelf. More importantly, the lotion is dispensed through a hole at the top of the bottle, which makes it very hygienic to use.
Efficacy: It took a little over two weeks before I really saw and felt a difference. My skin was far less reactive, my pores seemingly more refined. Devotees weren't lying about the gloss – my complexion had a healthy glow and felt ridiculously smooth (rosacea flare-ups can make your complexion a little rough to the touch).
It's worth noting that after finishing my bottle and going off it for a few weeks, my skin has started to react again to environmental factors like the heat and from wearing masks out all the time. Maskne, anyone?
The Verdict: Using the P50T made a massive, positive difference to my skin and I've just purchased another bottle. It's not cheap, which may be an issue for some, but considering the benefits and quality – it's manufactured cold to preserve the integrity of ingredients – it’s worth every cent.
Biologique Recherche Lotion P50T; from $125 (150 ml).
Dulu paid for our own Biologique Recherche Lotion P50T.