Feel like you just got a handle on the difference between a serum, moisturiser and face oil and now comes a skincare booster? Should you be ditching your serum for a skincare booster? Just what is the difference between a skin booster and a serum. Are Paula’s Choice boosters the best? If your skin’s sensitive can you still use a skincare booster?
New skincare products (when you don’t know how to use them… or which one’s best for you) are like trying to decide between yogurt coated pretzels and chocolate chip cookies. You either walk away with both i.e. all the skincare boosters you can get your hands on… or neither i.e. no skin booster love for you.
Today we’re going to arm you with all the info you could ever need to;
1) Know exactly what a skincare booster is, how to mix them into your skincare routine and how to use them.
2) Choose the best skin booster for your skin type and skin concerns.
Ready to defuse your skincare booster confusion bomb? Then come read with me dear skin savvy…
What’s a Skincare Booster?
Imagine you’re making a chocolate cake. You’ve got the basic chocolaty bits – chocolate sponge, chocolate frosting and chocolate icing. All taste like chocolate but none are like what an espresso shot is to coffee lovers. The chocolate sponge is full of chocolaty goodness, but it’s chocolate-y 35% cocoa yum is spread out to make a light and fluffy sponge.
Tonight you have the biggest of chocoholics visiting you and you’re in for the WOW(!) factor.
So on top of your chocolate cake with chocolate frosting and chocolate icing, you whip up a 75% cocoa cream using it to turn your homemade cake into a Master Chef special.
Not only are your eyes now feasting, your specially active chocolate receiving taste-buds are in oh-so-good overload heaven.
Dear friend this is the exact same concept for any and all skincare boosters.
A skincare booster is concentrated goodness.
Where a serum or moisturiser might have 5% vitamin C, the best skincare boosters will have 10% or more.
Where a treatment serum might gift your skin 1 kind of anti-ageing peptide, the best skincare boosters give your skin a happy selection of 8.
Where a nighttime moisturiser might focus on just 1 key ingredients in concentrations which give results, the best skincare boosters use every active ingredient in proven potent and active concentrations.
Bottom line: Skincare boosters are like espresso coffee shots for your skin.
Best Skin Boosters
But where do you start? Which flavour of skin booster’s right for you? Dear friend, this is a great question and it’s going to make the difference between you feeling like OMGosh skincare boosters are my hero to OMGoodness why is everyone raving about skincare boosters, they do nothing.
When it comes to choosing your best skin booster, you should be looking for active ingredients with a proven track record. Which means skincare ingredients like;
- Paula’s Choice C15 Super Booster
- Paula’s Choice C25 Super Booster – I’ll explain the difference between these 2 very soon
- Clinique Fresh Pressed Daily Booster with Pure Vitamin C 10%
- Sephora Collection Luminizing Booster
- Paula’s Choice 10% Niacinamide Booster
- Indeed Laboratories Hydration Booster
- The Ordinary 10% Niacinamide + 1% Zinc
- Paula’s Choice 1% Retinol Booster
- Paula’s Choice Peptide Booster
- The Ordinary Matrixyl 10%
- Eucerin Hyaluron-Filler Concentrate
- Paula’s Choice Hyaluronic Acid Booster
- Hylamide Low-Molecular HA Booster
- Indeed Laboratories Q10 Booster
- Trilogy CoQ10 Booster Oil
Best Skincare Booster For You
While it’s great to know which skincare ingredients are winners, you’ll also need to know which overall formulas are great for your target skin concern. Take for instance niacinamide, there’s one skin booster listed above which would be great for almost all skin types in need of radiance, anti-ageing and protection, however there’s one which I would only recommend for oily skin types – this my friend is because of the partnering ingredients.
Do not worry, you don’t have to go trudging through those fine print ingredients lists, that’s why you have me (!) Choose your skin concern from the list below and go forth to find your best skincare booster yet.
Psst! I’ve listed a few for each skin need with the best one listed first.
Best skin booster for large pores;
Best skin booster for anti-ageing;
Best skin booster for fine lines and wrinkles;
- Paula’s Choice 1% Retinol Booster – £47 – only for you if your skin’s VERY used to retinol
- The Ordinary Matrixyl 10% – £9.60
Best skin booster for breakouts/oily skin;
Best skincare booster for brightening;
- Paula’s Choice C15 Super Booster – £45 – although this is a lower concentration of vitamin C to Paula’s Choice C25 booster, the formula of C15 makes it extremely effective i.e. dissolved in water, at a pH of 3, protected with ferulic acid. C25 is a suspension of vitamin C in silicone which means less active will get into your skin.
- Clinique Fresh Pressed Daily Booster with Pure Vitamin C 10% – £58 – vitamin C goes off quickly and skincare products can be 3 years old before you buy them, Clinique get around this by powering you to activate aka mix this serum at home.
Best skin booster for hydration;
- Eucerin Hyaluron-Filler Concentrate – £30 – very low molecular weight hyaluronic acid can cause side effects however Eucerin use only the kinds that can’t, they’re a definite go to for hyaluronic acid skincare boosters and the reason why I’m listing them no.1
- Indeed Laboratories Hydration Booster – £16.99
Best skincare booster for sensitive skin;
- Hylamide Sensitive Fix Booster – £18.00
How to Use a Skin Booster/Skincare Booster?
Picked out your best skincare booster? Fantastic, now’s time to find out how best to mix it into your skincare routine i.e. should you be using yours before or after toner? Twice a day? In PM only?
Answer: The best way to use a skincare booster is after you’ve cleansed and toned your skin but before you’ve applied serum or moisturiser. And by the way, this doesn’t mean you have to use toner to use a skincare booster – if you don’t have a toner, that’s A-OK, simply use your skincare booster after cleansing.
Skincare boosters are in general much more watery than a serum. They’re designed this way to give them superhero absorbing speeds meaning they get to deeper layers of your skin faster. 1 to 2 drops patted over your face is all you need.
— Cheryl Woodman (@HonestyForSkin) 20 August 2018
Answer no 2: You can also mix your skin booster with a serum or moisturiser you already use. This is especially helpful for powerful ingredients like retinol. Say you have a PM moisturiser you love, add a few drops of retinol booster to your dream cream and boom – you’ve just created a powerhouse anti-ageing moisturiser.
While most boosters can be used twice a day for quick and speedy skin benefits, there are some you shouldn’t. Retinol and high concentrations of vitamin C for example. Retinol is known to cause irritation to skin, this one’s a definite use only once a day. Vitamin C can also be too hardcore for skin types which aren’t used to it, this is one to use with caution if you’ve never used before.
There you have it my fellow skin savvy. The 101 of skincare boosters. Which are you excited to try out? Still wondering which is the best skin booster for you? Come ask me your Q.s in the comments below…
Cheryl Woodman is a scientist & award winning skincare formulator who is more friend next door than bow tie wearing professor. As creator of Honesty For Your Skin her aim is to help you care for your skin in the best ways possible. She is founder of the natural & fragrance free skincare brand Honesty while also hosting 1 to 1 skincare coaching to help you get your best skin yet. Find out more here.