As promised here’s the separate, longer post on the Biologique Recherche lotions. I finished the P50V last month, a bottle of 150ml that lasted me three months with twice daily use.
This lotion comes in several strengths. P50W is the weakest, then P50V and the full strength is P50. The original formula with phenol is no longer available in Europe but it is in the USA and is sold as “P50 1970”. Since Biologique Recherche isn’t the most accessible brand (even here in France – I got this via a hotel spa) and is hardly the cheapest, there are those who say it’s not worth going through the trouble if you can’t get the 1970 formula. I don’t have an answer to that at this moment but here is what Carolin Hirons wrote about the newer formula. I do believe she prefers the original phenol one. I also found this website, and there you’ll see a detailed comparison between the two formulas that should be of help to those debating which one to get. I must say that I am curious to try the 1970 formula, but perhaps after the P50.
My experience with the milder P50V (which I believe is the same price as the stronger P50) is generally positive – I think it’s a good acid toner, never had any problems with breaking out or ‘purging’. Improvements on skin is hard to gauge, I didn’t experience any miracle overnight change, but bear in mind I have had some sort of Retinol/AHA product in my regime constantly for a few years now so maybe there’s that. I still get my hormonal spots so this hasn’t stopped it from happening but I seriously doubt anything will, short of taking medication. However I have noticed that when I do get the breakouts they are fewer in number (one usually or two) and they seem to be smaller and generally easier to get rid off. There was this breakout last month with multiple zits happening across the face but I think that’s a reaction to something new I introduced both in my skincare and diet.
I started P50 right away after finishing the P50V and curiously, it burns less than P50V on flakies – I remember P50V stung when I applied it over flakies on the nose when I had the cold but the P50 didn’t. On the other hand I also noticed sometimes it burns a little more when I’m not as gentle during my washing or drying. It also smelled less vinegar-y than P50V. The ingredients are different:
Water (Aqua), Gluconolactone, Propylene Glycol, Niacinamide, Lactic Acid, Ethoxydiglycol, Vinegar (Acetum), Magnesium Chloride, Citric Acid, Malic Acid, Phytic Acid, Spongilla Lacustris Spicule Extract, Yeast Extract (Faex Extract), Cochlearia Armoracia (Horseradish) Root Extract, Capsicum Frutescens Fruit Extract, Juglans Regia (Walnut) Seed Extract, Arctium Lappa Root Extract, Rumex Acetosa Leaf Extract, Sulfur, Sodium Salicylate, Salicylic Acid, Sorbitol, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Metabifulfite, Sodium Benzoate
Water (Aqua), Gluconolactone, Lactic Acid, Glycerin, Propylene Glycol, Niacinamide, Citric Acid, Ethoxydiglycol, Magnesium Chloride, Malic Acid, Vinegar (Acetum), Phytic Acid, Salicylic Acid, Cochlearia Armoracia (Horseradish) Root Extract, Arctium Lappa Root (Burdock Root) Extract, Rumex Acetosa Leaf Extract, Myrtus Communis Extract, Commiphora Myrrha Resin Extract, Allium Cepa (Onion) Bulb Extract, Thymus Vulgaris (Thyme) Flower/Leaf Oil, Sulfur, Sorbitol, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate
Just for fun I’m comparing that to Peter Thomas Roth Glycolic 10% because it’s the last acid toner I used :
Water, Glycolic Acid, Methyl Gluceth-20, Propylene Glycol, Alcohol, Lactic Acid, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Extract, Chamomile Recutita Flower (Chamomile) Extract, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera), Sodium Borate, Sodium PCA, Polysorbate 20, Allantoin, Ascorbyl Phosphate, Phospholipids, Citric Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin.
The P50 range for me is good for general upkeep and for minimizing the ‘damage’ when hormonal spots happen. My skin at the moment has better clarity and texture compared to this time last year, and although I can’t say how much of it is due to P50 I do believe it plays a part. I have some potions that are meant to be used immediately after cleansing so perhaps I will take a break from P50 then and we will see what happens!