I tried the Clarins Live Consultation, and here's how the beauty chat went [Review]

PHOTO: Clarins
PHOTO: Clarins

It started with telecommuting, then telemedicine, and now, teleconsultation. Introducing Clarins Live Consultation, one of the first in the beauty industry to introduce a one-on-one interactive virtual consultation to consumers.

The constant evolvement of the coronavirus has led to innovation in the way we live and how brands conduct their businesses. But, whether it is the Delta variant or Omicron, there’s no skimping on the beauty regimen right? So when I heard about Clarins Live Consultation, I got curious.

How to book a virtual appointment

A quick search on the Clarins website led me to the Clarins Live Consultation.

There are various services lined up such as Personalised Beauty Routine, Beautiful Eyes Essentials, Age-Defying Essentials, Pregnancy Safe Essentials, Glowing Skin Essentials and even one for Valentine’s Day gifting! Pick a service, date and time, and you are all set. All that’s needed is a smartphone and a reliable Internet connection.

The Clarins Live Consultation

I clicked on the provided link at the appointed time, and my beauty coach, Charmaine, was already waiting for me. Punctuality is so under-rated these days.

Once Charmaine got some administrative work (creating my profile on Clarins' database) out of the way, we plunged right into my skin concerns. Charmaine was personable and a good listener. She asked questions to understand my skin issues. My skin conditions include open pores, sensitivity, dehydration, and recurrence of comedones. I also lamented about my maskne and the tiny bumps appearing on my neck, plaguing me for months.

Even though I poured my skin woes on her, Charmaine patiently took it all in and addressed each issue one by one. Even though I know a little more about beauty ingredients than the average Jill, I had some erroneous assumptions. Full disclosure here, I hope you can benefit from her wealth of beauty knowledge like I did. Here's what I learned from her.

PHOTO: Clarins
PHOTO: Clarins

Skin concern: Open pores

I know that ingredients such as AHAs and BHAs are excellent for treating comedones, but I failed to realise that my sensitive skin may not take to it well. It was thanks to Charmaine that i realised this.

Beauty advice: Those suffering from sensitive skin should not use products containing AHAs and BHAs. These ingredients stimulate the skin to peel and thus should be avoided as they may irritate sensitive skin further.

Recommended product: Gentle Renewing Cleansing Mousse

Skin concern: Comedones

I can feel the comedones (roughness of the skin due to clogging of the pores) forming every few days. As such, I scrub very regularly (sometimes more than three times a week) as I can feel the instant smoothness of my skin after every scrub. However, I may have done so a little too fervently and (gasp!) skipping the vital cleanser before each scrub!

Beauty advice: As the facial scrub does not contain any cleansing ingredients, always use facial cleanser before scrubbing. It would be best to space out the facial scrubs every three days as over-scrubbing can lead to dehydration.

Recommended product: Pure Scrub

Skin concern: Roughness of skin

The skin tends to accumulate dirt quickly with the constant onslaught of pollutants. As such, it pays to be hardworking when it comes to skincare. The act of using masks can make or break a skincare regimen.

Beauty advice: The skin is a living organism that produces oil and sebum. Also, when the skin undergoes renewal, it produces dead skin. The situation is exacerbated when you use makeup. That's why a critical step for the skin to glow is to use beauty masks regularly. The best time to apply a mask is after you scrub. A purifying mask can help suck up impurities and minimise the roughness of the skin.

Recommended product: SOS Pure Face Mask

Skin concern: Tiny oil cysts on my neck

The tiny oil cysts or comedones on my neck has been vexing me as they do not seem to disappear no matter what products I try. I wasn’t sure if I should be using a face or body scrub and how often I should be doing so. So, of course, I threw these questions to the beauty coach.

Beauty advice: The cause of the little bumps on the neck could be due to improper cleaning, mainly when you apply sunblock to the neck. Rule of thumb: Always double cleanse. Removing your sunblock with makeup remover or a cleansing gel before using your facial cleanser is a must. As the skin on your neck is thicker, you can scrub the neck area more often. It is also acceptable to use a body scrub to do so. And don’t forget to give some love to your neck every time you apply masks.

Recommended product: Gentle Renewing Cleansing Mousse

Skin concerns: Dehydration and maskne

I noticed changes to my skin over time. While I used to suffer from oily skin during my teenage years, my skin now feels tight after washing and, at times, dehydrated. At the same time, I also fall prey to maskne.

Beauty advice: Use a light cream with good water locking properties. While out and about, rehydrate your face with a face mist. Here's how: Blot off excess perspiration, then mist your face. You can either choose to press in or let the skin absorb the goodness on its own. On busy days when you are in a hurry, you can also replace toner with mist.

Recommended product: Hydra-Essentiel Light Cream & Hydra-Essentiel Hydrating Multi-Protection Mist

PHOTO: Clarins
PHOTO: Clarins

My thoughts on the virtual consultation

Besides refreshing my beauty knowledge, it was indeed a "consultation" without the hard sell. Charmaine also applied the said products on her hand to show me the texture. A pity I wasn’t able to smell them or feel the texture myself.

After addressing my burning questions, Charmaine helped me add the list of products that are supposed to manage my skin concerns to the cart. She also reassured me of her availability to clarify anything. There was no sales pushing which I appreciated. So convenient and stress-free. She was amiable and easy to talk to. At no time was she flustered or impatient with my flurry of questions. I also cleared some of my erroneous thinking, skipping cleanser before using scrubs for one. I learned a lot.

At the end of the consultation, I was left with the mental space to review each product ingredient and check my beauty pantry to ensure I do not overstock on items I already have.

If you do not want the hassle of jostling with the crowds in town, make the effort to dress up and minimise any unnecessary physical contact, the Clarins Live Consultation is definitely for you. You can even order the products online, and the products will appear at your doorstep. Convenience and time saved are two huge pluses.

Pity though, the Internet connection failed us thrice during the 45-minute consultation (I did have quite a few queries). We had to reconnect to get back to our conversation. As someone who prefers human contact, I would opt for the in-person consultation where the beauty coach can examine my face in close quarters. She can see only so much via the laptop camera, right? But the mandate on masking up may prove a challenge.

Also, in-person consultations allow me to bring home a sample or two before I fork out my money on any recommended products. So why not enjoy the best of both worlds? Consider making a virtual consultation with a beauty coach, understand more about what you need, study the product ingredients, check your beauty pantry, then head down to a Clarins counter to smell and test out the products yourself. If you are not pressed for time, bring home samples of the products you are eyeing to test them out before buying.

How does a work-from-home Clarins Live Consultation during lunch hour sound?

Clarins Beauty Coaches are available from Monday to Friday, 12pm – 6pm, excluding public holidays.

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