Filorga began in 2007 as a skincare brand inspired by aesthetic medicine. For the consumer that means Filorga is result-driven, focused on both visible signs of aging and invisible forms of damage. Their most notable innovation is their NCTF Complex which is composed of vitamins, amino acids, coenzymes, nucleic bases, minerals, and an antioxidant; the goal is to supplement skin with materials it lacks internally, which then results in a heightened ability to repair itself and make use of other treatment ingredients like retinoids and exfoliating acids. To ensure efficient absorption of NCTF and hyaluronic acid, Filorga encapsulates both within ‘chronospheres’, which I infer as similar to liposome technology.

I have been trying Filorga skincare for the last few months, partially because it became available locally in Canada at BeautyBoutique, it was something new, and the technology seems interesting. Overall I am incredibly impressed by the results I have seen, especially when you consider that comparable products are typically 1.5x-2x the price of Filorga.

Filorga Foam Cleanser

filorga-foam-cleanser-hydra-filler-time-filler-optim-eyes-1Purpose: Cleanse the skin.
Iconic feature: Hyaluronic acid, which should minimize dehydration commonly associated with sulphate-based cleansers.
Who is it for: Those not prone to dehydration, or those with a strong hydrating routine after cleansing.
Usage: Twice daily as a second cleanse, though it can remove makeup if used twice.
Ingredients: CosDNA.
Thoughts: This was the last product I tried from Filorga, and while I found it far less dehydrating than Drunk Elephant Beste I still found it to be too dehydrating for my skin. My skin did not feel tight or dry to the touch though, it was more that I noticed blemishes forming in areas of my face where I have learned they only appear when my skin is over-stimulated or dehydrated. The texture of this foam cleanser is what is making me wish it had worked wonders for me; the foam is so dense and softening.
Recommendation: Not unless you follow it with a toner, hydrating essence or serum, and a hydrating cream, and do nothing else to dehydrate your skin.
Alternatives: Estée Lauder Perfectly Clean Triple-Action Cleanser/Toner/Makeup Remover.
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Affordable Clinical Skincare Brands

The lustre of glossy white walls and product consultants dressed in black may be attractive, but the department store may not always be the best place to shop for skincare. Often times one can find more researched, proven, and less expensive products from the science-based brands in ugly packaging, and though it may be boring, these are the brands who treat skin with fact rather than marketing.


neostrata-canada-clinicalNow, first things first; NeoStrata in Canada is very different than NeoStrata in any other country. Canada has its own exclusive formulations, often with different technology. Nevertheless, NeoStrata is brilliant no matter the country. In Canada they were the first to introduce glycolic acid, stem cells, retinol with peptides, and L-ascorbic acid. They use external, independent and clinical evaluations to judge their products for efficacy, and focus on skin concern rather than fancy marketing and packaging.

Signature technology: Glycolic acid, retinol, L-ascorbic acid, PhytoCellTec fruit stem cells, Matrixyl 3000 and New Matrixyl peptides, Genowhite brightening peptide, epidermal growth factors, and hyaluronic acid.
Iconic product: Purifying Solution, because of 8% glycolic acid at a proper pH level for exfoliating.
Newest release: Anti-Aging Peel Solution, because of a 25% blend of glycolic acid, gluconolactone, papaya, and 1.5% peptides.
Personal favourite: All-in-One Night Serum, because of 0.30% retinol, 5.0% New Matrixyl peptides, and 0.05% hyaluronic acid.
Who the brand is for: Mature skin wanting steady results, blemish-prone skin, or those with uneven skin tone and texture.
Price point: Generally under $50, though nothing is more than $150.
Where to find it: Shoppers Drug Mart or Rexall in Canada for the mentioned products, everywhere else in the world will have other products which are different though still brilliant.

La Roche-Posay

la-roche-posay-clinicalAnother one with a very country-focused product offering, La Roche-Posay is one of the many iconic French pharmacy brands in the industry which focus more on soothing and calming rather than aggressive treatment. The primary differentiator in La Roche-Posay products is the inclusion of thermal spring water containing bicarbonate, calcium, silicate, magnesium, strontium, selenium, zinc, and copper¹. The result of including this specific thermal spring water is a demonstrated antiradical, anti-inflammatory, and protection against ultraviolet B-induced skin damage. Is this a miracle ingredient, no, but it does have merit in skincare.

Signature technology: Thermal spring water.
Iconic product: Thermal Spring Water, because of its purity, mineral content, and ability to soften and soothe skin.
Newest release: Toleriane Double Repair Moisturizer, because of its simplicity in formulation and inclusion of soothing prebiotic technology, glycerin, and niacinamide.
Personal favourite: Toleriane Purifying Foaming Cleanser, because of its cushy cream-to-foam texture and EDTA to balance skin challenged by hard water.
Who the brand is for: Anyone fed up with aggressive active ingredients who wants a soothing, steady routine.
Price point: Generally under $50.
Where to find it: Shoppers Drug Mart or Rexall in Canada, Ulta or Target in America, essentially any proper drug store in the world.
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