If you’ve been perusing the skincare aisles of your favourite beauty haunts recently, you might have spotted one product popping up on shelves more than others – ‘essences’.
A skincare staple in Asia, more and more Western brands are incorporating essences into their stables – but what exactly are they and where on earth do they fit into your existing routine?
According to Emma Hobson, Education Manager for the International Dermal Institute and Dermalogica, essences are great for dehydrated skin.
“Essences have been available in Asia for years, particularly as they are formulated to focus on hydration. Because they are so lightweight they are a great product to use in a humid climate or when the weather is drying,” she explains. (Another of our skincare favourites? Face mists like the Jurlique Balancing Rosewater Mist. Post continues after video.)
As for exactly what they are, the answer’s not quite so simple.
“Today an essence is more or less the same as a serum or ‘booster’, but that said, you can also buy essence toners. An essence is always lightweight in texture where as some serums can be (but by no means all) slightly more viscous,” she explains.
Because essences were traditionally lighter and more watery, they were originally used as an extra hydrating layer post-toner to use in addition to serums, but have developed to incorporate some of those serum benefits in their own right. (Post continues after gallery.)