In all my years of trying skin care products from all sides of every aisle, counter, and prescription pad, I’d be hard-pressed to think of a product that won my life-long affections so immediately as Arcona Gentle Solution ($50). Seriously, it was love after the first night.
I try a lot of skin care products. Like, all the time. It’s nearly impossible for me to stick to a skin care regimen for longer than a couple of months, to the detriment of the overall condition of my skin, I’m quite sure. This penchant for trying the latest and greatest, to varying degrees of success, has also resulted in piles of discarded skincare products taking up every corner and crevice of my bathroom, waiting for its day in the spotlight. It’s not pretty.
Here’s a little background info on my skin: I have normal to dry, olive-toned skin that is very prone to clogged pores and redness/ruddiness. I suffered a good bit with acne from high school through my 20s, which, compounded by a bad habit of picking, has left me with some mild acne scarring and enlarged pores… which are the bane of my existence. Having just turned 30, I have also begun to experience some mild discoloration issues from sun-bathing in my youth.
Having been interested in trying the Arcona line for some time now, I was ecstatic to receive a sample of Arcona Gentle Solution, which had somehow escaped my radar. I used this product immediately the same night I received it. After cleansing, I applied one pump to freshly cleansed, dry skin all over my face and neck. The product goes on a bit tacky, most likely due to the high concentration of glycerin and other humectants, including glycogen and hydrolyzed soy protein, but absorbs completely within 5 to 10 minutes.
I awoke the next morning to incredibly bright, taut skin with an immediate and obvious decrease in redness, clogged pores and comedones. While my pores didn’t look much smaller right away, they were completely clear of the rather obvious clogs and sebaceous filaments that typically overtake my complexion. My pores have never looked as clear, even after facials and aggressive salicylic acid treatments, as they did after one night using Arcona Gentle Solution. It is incredible!
Arcona uses what it calls its Glycolactolymer complex – a long-chain polymerized version of both glycolic acid and lactic acid, which is said to enhance penetration while releasing its acidity gradually, due to the slow breakdown of the polymer structure. While my skin doesn’t typically react well to prolonged use of AHAs, I didn’t notice any of the redness, dryness or irritation I usually experience... until I decided to go overboard. Arcona Gentle Solution is very effective, but I learned that less is definitely more with this product. In my excitement over the immediacy of the results, I started using it nightly and wound up a bit red and irritated. Backing down to 2 to 3 times a week, as recommended in the directions (who would have thought?), was the optimal usage case and yielded some incredible results: brighter skin, a noticeable decrease in discolorations and clogged pores, and an overall soft, smooth complexion.
To further quell any potential irritation, Arcona Gentle Solution’s concise ingredient list includes antioxidants and anti-inflammatory ingredients, such as chlorophyll, guava extract, and witch hazel. Additional actives include beta fructan, which stimulates the immune function of the skin, and Glucosamine HCI, which maintains skin’s elasticity. Finally, grapefruit seed extract lends its antibacterial and anti-fungal properties to the solution as a natural preservative.
I’m so excited to part with the product graveyard in my bathroom, having found my star product! If you have clog-prone pores and/or a dull, dry complexion, I highly recommend this product. Just be sure to stick to the instructions – they really do make all the difference.