It’s a truth universally known that as pretty as a strawberry is, no one wants their nose to resemble this elegant fruit.
However, when the pores on the average nose get filled with the gunky stuff that we’d rather not know about…this is exactly what your nose might look like to others. Horror of horrors, it’s enough to make you want to wear a paper bag over your head!
Recently, I was invited to a skincare workshop organised by Taiwanese brand, Neogence and SASA Malaysia and the guest speaker at the event was one Biomedical Engineering professor, Dr Hsieh Chien-Yang, who came all the way from Taiwan to talk about the company’s Pore Solution skincare line.
According to the labs of Neogence, this is a skincare series that has been designed to help prevent or solve the dreaded ‘strawberry nose’ problem by tackling the cause of this which is clogged and enlarged pores.
So, eliminating the need for picking, prodding or poking – this is a series of skincare products that can get to the root of your pore issues effectively but gently.
The Neogence Pore line stresses that theirs is a much easier way to deal with pore congestion and acne than resorting to a damaging habit of tweezer-picking pores, tearing off our skin with messy and sticky pore packs, or drowning our skin in corrosive acid peels to relieve our skin of congested pores and acne-causing bacteria.
Really?! I have to admit that I’m guilty as charged of doing all of the above when it comes to facing my pore issues.
Had I known there was an easier way to this than a life filled with all this pore-pickin’ horror, I would have tossed away my tweezers and never attempted another pore pack fail.
(Does anyone find those charcoal pore packs extra horrible and messy? I always get black smudges everywhere when I use them!)
I arrived at this event knowing very little about the Neogence brand but came away from this workshop with a new understanding that the Neogence Pore Solution was a targeted system of skincare for problem pores and acne-prone skin that’s not painful, not messy and takes no more effort than your usual daily skincare steps.
Anyway, as a pre-event treat, we were served an array of elegant hors d’oeuvres and as a nice touch, the organisers placed plates of fresh strawberries between each cluster of participants.
Some of us in the crowd were quick to latch onto these fruity babies for dessert. I don’t blame them – they were fresh and juicy and, best of all, free!
However, when Dr. Hsieh began his workshop and casually mentioned that the strawberries were actually making a cameo as a metaphor for the day’s workshop, there were some audible gasps from among the audience.
I can only guess that their shock was perhaps from the guilt of having guzzled something as weighty as a metaphor lol, or in horror that there was at all any correlation between a nose stuffed with gunk and their afternoon snack.
Either way, it was an amusing moment for the remainder of us who had not resorted to eating the event’s props that day.
But I digress. Let me get back to the
pore core issue….
Unlike stuffed mushrooms, stuffed pores are truly the stuff of nightmares. Please pardon my overuse of the word ‘stuff’ in that sentence but it was for emphasis haha
So, the crazy thing about pores is that we have them and that we need them. They’re actually nature’s little manholes and help our skin breathe and absorb the good stuff.
On the other hand, the crumby thing about pores is that they’re also like drains and tend to get themselves into a cloggy mess when left to their own devices. They’re also attention-seeking and keen on getting noticed even when we wish they would stay invisible because we all know that highly visible pores is just not the domain of flawless skin.
According to Dr Hsieh, Neogence Pore Solution Series is a great skin program for almost everyone because obviously, we all have pores but in saying that, this is one skincare line that is supremely ideal for those among us who suffer from oily, congested and acne-prone skin.
THE NEOGENCE PORE SOLUTION SERIES
The Pore Solution Series is a stable of six products that have all been developed to reign in the madness that is clogged pores by keeping them clean, out of the sight and out of any acne-causing trouble.
Just some brief background, Neogence is actually a professional medical beauty brand and boasts a research team of qualified dermatologists. The company also tends to develop products in accordance with the needs of Asian skin and an understanding of the Asian climate in mind.
At this workshop we had a chance to handle all of the six products in the Neogence Pore Solutions Series and it was a nice and informative introduction to a skincare brand and line that was new to me.
As a complete set, the Pore Solution Series basically has four main functions-:
THE PORE PURIFYING CLEANSING GEL
The first product in the set is the NEOGENCE PORE PURIFYING CLEANSING GEL. This is a lightweight alkaline and oil-free daily cleanser that cleans pores and leaves the skin feeling refreshed.
THE DEEP PORE CLEANSING MASK
The next product in the series is the NEOGENCE DEEP PORE CLEANSING MASK which contains Illite Clay and Charcoal Powder and provides a more deep cleanse than the gel in this range. This is perfect for those days when your skin feels like it needs a more serious cleaning and great for deep pore treatment in the T-zone area.
The charcoal in this product’s formula draws out the skin’s excess oils while the Illite Clay cleans away dead cells and banishes those pesky blackheads by purifying the skin.
Being an extremely good sport, Dr Hsieh didn’t even request the services of a model or volunteer. He took it upon himself to launch into a physical demonstration of the Deep Pore Cleansing Mask on his own face.
Dr. Hsieh was a wonderfully hands-on demonstrator and this may be the first time I have ever witnessed a man (and a professor at that!) apply a mask to himself in public with such enthusiasm and precision and that, ladies and gentleman, made me respect him all the more *hand on heart* .
You have to appreciate a man who clearly knows what to do with a mask.
This is a rinse-off type mask and it’s ready to wash away when the mask is dry. The dark grey patches are where the mask is still moist and the light grey areas are where the mask is already dry.
This mask takes about 10-15 minutes to work its magic and makes my skin feel instantly cleaner and appear more radiant. It’s a great product for tending to very greasy skin and may be used for intense cleansing once weekly. For those of you with drier skin, however, use sparingly and certainly less frequently based upon your own specific needs.
THE EXTREMELY OFF-HEADS SERUM pH5.5
The next product I want to show you is the EXTREMELY OFF-HEADS SERUM and is the line’s targeted blackhead and whitehead-dissolving solution.
Apparently, this serum contains Hydrophilic Glycacid which is extremely effective at preventing pore blockage and in turn this helps to prevent the incidence of acne. It’s also fine for sensitive skin so that’s good news for me and it is a product that can be used daily.
Don’t be deceived by the ingredient name though – the Glycacid does not make this serum acidic at all. In fact, this product is proven to be pH-mild and during the workshop, we were all given litmus paper and a pH chart to test the serum’s pH in case any of us doubted it.
The serum comes with a pipette-style dispenser and a single drop goes a long way. That amount is enough to cover the area in and around the nose.
In terms of efficacy, let me tell you this, you’re not going to see instant results with this because like all serums it does take time but I’m trialling this on my skin now and hopefully I can come back to you with the results of a more detailed review if you require.
As with most serums, this should be applied after the skin is cleansed but before toning so that your skin can more readily absorb the maximum benefits of this targeted formula.
THE FRESH COOLING ASTRINGENT TONER
As with all complete skincare programs, after cleansing it is recommended that the skin be toned as a follow-up step.
The toner in this series contains antibacterial witch hazel and is an astringent one. In fact, it openly declares itself a FRESH COOLING ASTRINGENT TONER.
However, this type of astringent toner is somewhat more suitable for oily skin and if you have skin that is prone to dryness or flaking – you may want to consider replacing this step with something less astringent or opting for a more localised application as I do.
Since I have combination skin with an extremely oily T-zone but dry and often flaky cheeks, I will only swab astringent toners around my nose and chin areas; avoiding the drier areas of my face.
THE EXTREME PORE-REDUCING SERUM
In addition to the Extremely Off-Heads Serum I talked about earlier, there is another serum within the Neogence Pore Series that looks specifically at minimising pore size.
The Neogence EXTREME PORE-REDUCING SERUM contains active Witch Hazel Leaf Extract and Vitamin B3 to tighten pores and control oil so your skin will appear more refined. This formula also has the function of rebuilding slackened pore walls.
I haven’t had the chance to try this product for its purpose yet but you might want to consider it for your skincare regime if enlarged and overstretched pores are an issue for you.
THE ANTI-BLEMISH TREATMENT GEL
Finally, an ANTI-BLEMISH TREATMENT GEL is the last product in the Pore Solution Series and if you’re intent on using the full program, or need something to cure blemishes as you go about your day, then this will go on as a treatment product that you can leave on all day.
This can be applied directly onto acne-prone skin to control oil and combat germs and is an oil-free but hydrating formula for all day comfort.
This was an intimate and informative workshop about this specialist skincare line by Neogence and I had a good time learning about products that happen to deal with a problem that I personally suffer from.
For your benefit, here’s a handy look-up chart of all the products in the Neogence Pore Solution Series and their indications-:
I really do believe that our hot and humid weather has a lot to do with the fact that my skin is oily and my pores seem more prone to congestion so I think this is a set I can see myself reaching for.
The products in the Neogence Pore Solution Series are priced from RM69-RM129 and as far as good skincare goes, this is considered an affordable and fairly-positioned range.
While I wish I had started doing the proper thing by my pores a decade earlier because prevention is always better than cure, the good news is that this Pore Solution line handles both prevention and cure so I’m not completely at a point of no return.
I received two items during the workshop for home trial and hopefully, will get around to doing a more personal review of these in a future post on the blog. I’ll need some more time with each of my trial products before I can make any further recommendations.
Notably, some products in the series contain astringent ingredients which may be an issue for some of you. However, with the two products I have been trialling at home, I have experienced no side effects or allergic reactions and it has been positive to this point and I think that’s significant news given that I have easily excitable skin.
There’s a light and fresh medicinal scent to each of these formulas and this makes them smell sterile which is a lot better than floral or putrid, which some skincare products can be. In any case, the scent of each of these Neogence products is mild and not unpleasant.
Do let me know if any of you would prefer a more detailed and personal review of my two trial items. I’ll apply my most intense pseudo-scientific methods to this trial if you require.
At any length, if you’re interested but concerned about any sensitivity issues, Dr. Hsieh advises a spot test on your inner arm area or behind your ears and waiting at least 24 hours to see if there is any adverse reaction before proceeding with applying a new product directly to your face.
Finally, to cap off this post, I’m attaching a rare group photo of all the participants, including moi!
Credits to SASA for managing the mammoth task of rounding us all up.
This skincare series is available exclusively in Malaysia through SASA stores.
It’s also available to other countries through SASA.com
Here are the links for your convenience…
[Disclaimer: The Deep Pore Cleansing Mask & Extremely Off-Heads Serum were received as media samples. All links are non-affiliate and for informational purposes only. Commentary is, at times, my personal opinion. Do consider at your own risk.]