ESK: 6 Weeks PM Skincare Challenge


When it comes to using skincare products from one brand, I have never quite found a brand that I would strongly recommend. I don’t say that lightly and in fact in all of the years I have been reviewing skincare products for my skin type, I have never once admitted to loving a collective of products tailored for my skin type used exclusively in a given timeframe. I rarely write about them, but this one time I just had to share.

There are plenty of awesome individual products out there that work amazingly on their own way, but what if I told you this brand did a thing for my skin. As you may know, I have struggled with large pores for most of my adult life, experienced oily t-zone, dry skin patches and dehydrated skin. As a skincare blogger, I am forever searching for a product(s) that can try to “fix” these skin issues. Many products I have tried over the years have contributed to helping to fix one or all but haven’t always been successful.

ESK, Evidence Skincare—is an Australian daily skincare brand created by husband and wife team, Daniel Rubinstein and Dr Ginni Mansberg in 2012. The skincare company aims to fill the gap in the beauty market for evidence-based skincare that are based on credibility and integrity without the marketing hype.

The use of active ingredients, formulations and concentrations are supported by strongest peer review evidence. There are NO harmful chemicals, preservatives, perfumes and animal testing. The products created have been designed to help reverse skin damage, deliver smoother, younger-looking skin, and help to slow the ageing process.

Hydroxy Cleanser $45

The hydroxy cleanser is described as a soap-free lightly foaming active (contains active ingredients: sodium laurel isithionate, glycolic acid and salicylic acid) cleanser. It helps to gently cleanse and exfoliate skin as it leaves fresh, smooth with minimised pores. This cleanser is suitable for beauties with combination, normal and acne prone skins.

I applied 2 pumps to damp skin and massage to my face and down to my neck for 60 seconds before further leaving it on for another 30 seconds. Then I wash my face and neck thoroughly with warm water. I found this cleanser to have worked well on my skin, as it helped to remove all impurities without stripping. It revealed a super fresh, clean, balanced skin, while helping to minimise the look of my pores.

I used this as my exclusive AM and PM cleanser for approximately 40 days until I ran out of it. I am so sad for it to have finished, but I really enjoyed using this cleanser, as it is not very often that I gravitate to one and use it all up. I would definitely use this again as I was quite happy with how it cleansed my skin.

Smooth Serum $95

The smooth serum is described as an AHA exfoliating serum used for PM routines. It can help to improve skin cell turnover, reveal a more balanced and smoother skin. Its active ingredients: glycolic acid 3%, lactic acid 1% and gluconolactone 1%. It can also help to improve overall skin texture and even skin tone. This product is suitable for all beauties with any skin type, but not for those with rosacea and use it sparingly if you have sensitive skin.

After cleansing my skin, I followed up with this gel serum and applied 2 pumps to my face and neck. It absorbed quickly without leaving any tacky residue. I didn’t experience any side affects like a tingling sensation that maybe seen as normal. Within the first 2 weeks, I began to notice my skin’s texture had improved and felt smoother, softer, hydrated and my large pores began to reduce in size.

I have never seen my skin appeared consistently hydrated, supple and minimised pores so early on. My skin had begun to appreciate these products in helping to improve at this time. Just like the cleanser, I have fallen in love and it is safe to say my skin looked more fresh, bright and my pores are better than they have been in a while.

Ultimate A $105

The ultimate A is described as a retinal (least irritating form of vitamin A) and Niacinamide (vitamin B3 – improves skin barrier function) based night cream. Its key active ingredients: retinal 0.06%, niacinamide 4% and glycolic acid 0.7%. This also helps to reduce the appearance of wrinkles, fine lines and hyperpigmentation. The night cream is suitable for beauties with any skin type, excluding use during pregnancy or while breast feeding.

After waiting a few minutes for the smooth serum to fully absorb, I paired with ultimate A night cream. I used this cream for a little over 5 weeks as my main night cream. I swear this is one of the best power couples in my incredible skincare game. I applied 2 pumps every evening after using the serum and pat into my skin and neck. It is lightweight and sinks in quickly. I didn’t exactly know how fast acting using vitamin A was, but I noticed some results within the first week.

In the past, I have had an on and off, love and hate relationship with using retinol/retinal ingredients in products from other brands. By week 2, my skin looked ridiculously amazing. I had done triple checks in the mirror just to be sure I wasn’t seeing glowing skin–my glowing and happy skin. I waited after 2 weeks to really decide that ESK was doing this great thing for my skin. It was like an out of body experience for my eyes to see my skin looking so much better.

What happened that changed my skin? Aside from having smooth texture and blurred pores, which actually helped to reduce them even further. I also found it helped to minimise the visibility of minor sun spots (higher part of my cheekbones), fine lines (underneath the socket of my eyes (FYI: I didn’t use this anywhere near my eyes)), hydration and balanced excess oily skin.

This is one of my favourite vitamin A creams, because it was pleasantly comfortable and helped to change the way my skin looks now–giving  me the confidence to wear less makeup.

Ultimate A+ $115

The ultimate A+ is described in a similar way as ultimate A, with the exceptions of active ingredients: retinal 0.1%, niacinamide 4% and glycolic acid 2%. This works similarly to prescription vitamin A for acne sufferers and ageing skin. This night cream is suitable for beauties with thicker, oilier and acne prone skins, as well as experienced retinoid users. Not to be use during pregnancy or while breast feeding.

After being on ultimate A for a little over 5 weeks, it was time to graduate and try ultimate A+. As I have only been using this product for less then a week, I can’t say it’s done a better job than ultimate A for my skin type and skin issues. However, it continues to tighten my pores and skin appears hydrated and bright. I have never used prescription vitamin A before so I cannot comment or compare with how well ultimate A+ performs. For now my skin hasn’t experienced a break out or have had any adverse side affects.

Overall, I am very happy to have discovered this brand and being given an opportunity to try some of their products, which I can honestly say have changed the way I view skincare. You definitely do not need a 10 step routine to get great results. Using 3-4 products work just as well and I am pleased to recommend this to any beauty seeking new skincare!

You can view and purchase the full ESK skincare range online via: Domestic and international shipping available.


* THIS PRODUCT WAS SENT TO ME FOR REVIEW CONSIDERATION. ALL OPINIONS ARE 100% MINE. SOME LINKS PROVIDED MAY BE AFFILIATED LINKS. (Products provided in travel size and prices listed are for full size products only.)