Full disclosure: I am using this circuit breaker and WFH situation to kick start my glow-up. Last year, I spent a lot of time in the sun—hiking, as well as going on a summer holiday—and it left my skin dull and pigmented in certain areas. I have decided to use this time to take care of my skin, so that when the circuit breaker is lifted, I will emerge with crystal clear skin. If you’d like to do the same, but are not sure how to go about it, or which products to use, keep reading.
Achieving crystal clear skin doesn’t require a lengthy, complicated skincare regime. You can do it with just three products like I did. SK-II sent me three of their most popular products to review, the Facial Treatment Essence (aka PITERA Essence) GenOptics Aura Essence and R.N.A Airy Milky Lotion. All these products harness the Power of the legendary PITERA to deliver crystal clear skin, and what better time to get started on my journey to achieve brighter, clear, more even-toned skin? But before I go on to share my review, let me explain what makes PITERA so special.
What is PITERA?
PITERA is derived from a natural fermentation process of a special yeast strain that is exclusive to SK-II and contains amino acids, vitamins and minerals that are essential to skin health. It is also observed to have Natural Moisturising Factors (NMF). This means the skin recognises it as its own and can reap all the benefits it has to offer: think crystal clear skin that is hydrated, brighter, has a smoother texture, fewer dark spots and refined pores.
PITERA was discovered when a group of scientists noticed that elderly brewers at a sake brewery had wrinkled skin on their faces, but their hands were soft and youthful. Since then, PITERA has helped women over the world transform their skin. And here’s how it helped me too.
How To Use SK-II PITERA Essence
The Facial Treatment Essence is beloved by A-listers, beauty insiders as well as beauty noobs. And with good reason too—it has 90 per cent PITERA in each bottle. But at $289 for a 230ml bottle, it’s not exactly cheap. To get the most out of it, I incorporate it into my skincare regime in a few ways.
On days when my skin needs extra care and attention, I soak a few cotton pads in PITERA Essence and place them all over my face, almost like a hydrating treatment.
I’ve also decanted some Facial Treatment Essence into a spray bottle and kept it in the refrigerator to use as a refreshing and hydrating mist whenever it gets too hot or my skin needs a boost of hydration during the day.
During my morning and night skincare regime, I pour a few drops into the palms of my hands and pat, pat, pat it into my skin after cleansing. This way, nothing is wasted on the cotton pad.
The essence has a watery, lightweight texture and is quickly and easily absorbed, helping my skin feel hydrated and comfortable, and ready for the next step in my routine.
How Do You Use SK-II GenOptics Aura Essence?
After my skin has been prepped with the Facial Treatment Essence, I follow up with the GenOptics Aura Essence. As someone with melanin rich skin, the struggle to avoid hyperpigmentation and dark spots is real. So, a brightening serum like the GenOptics Aura Essence is an extremely crucial part of my skincare routine.
The thing about sun damage is that it is not immediately visible (unless it’s a sunburn, in which case get some PITERA Essence on it ASAP to soothe and heal it). You can have dark spots and pigmentation show up years after you have stopped spending time in the sun. And that’s why this serum is so special. It helps target visible dullness and spots, as well as what you cannot see beneath the skin’s surface.
This lightweight, milky serum is packed with Prunus extract, a skin brightening heavyweight that is rich in antioxidants to combat damage from free radicals. This, combined with Power of PITERA, helps to give skin an even tone. It also has a brightening ingredient, Demelano P3C, which helps reduce the damage from prolonged sun exposure and inhibits melanin production that causes dark spots and hyperpigmentation. I use it as a way to tackle any existing dullness, but also to prevent future dark spots, dullness and pigmentation.
I smooth the GenOptics Aura Essence all over my face, paying special attention to areas like my forehead that need more help. It is quickly absorbed, without leaving any stickiness or greasy feeling, and I move on to apply my moisturiser, the R.N.A Power Airy Milky Lotion.
How To Use SK-II R.N.A Power Airy Milky Lotion
The R.N.A Power Airy Milky Lotion is a lightweight moisturiser that is ideal for Singapore’s warm and humid weather. It doesn’t feel heavy or sticky, and instead leaves the skin looking fresh and dewy.
Just like the Facial Treatment Essence and GenOptics Aura essence, this moisturiser is packed with the brand’s signature PITERA. Formulated with hydrolysed soy and yeast extracts, it works to keep skin radiant and firm. It also has freshwater algae extract that helps to reduce fine lines and wrinkles caused by dryness. If you have oily to combination skin, this moisturiser is ideal for you.
I scoop out a bit, gently massage it into my skin and pat it in. This moisturiser, along with the previous two products, helps to keep my skin hydrated, bright and even toned.
So Is SK-II Worth It?
Short answer: yes. Long answer: if you’re looking to preserve that youthful glow, it’s best to start on a brightening, anti-ageing skincare routine now. Dull skin, fine lines, and dark spots are all signs of ageing skin. And in some cases, they show up earlier because of accumulated sun damage. The solution is to try and prevent this from happening and it can be as simple as using just three really effective products—like I have.
Over the two weeks that I used and reviewed the PITERA Essence, GenOptics Aura Essence and R.N.A Power Airy Milky Lotion, my skin started to look brighter and more even toned. An overall even skin tone means light bounces off skin evenly, giving you a natural glow that you don’t need to fake with makeup or highlighter.
I also noticed post hyperpigmentation (PIH) from old acne marks had begun to look lighter, and my skin was generally brighter.
The PITERA Essence, GenOptics Aura Essence and R.N.A Power Airy Milky Lotion are all packed with the Power of PITERA and are suitable for all skin types, including sensitive and acne-prone skin. But as with all new skincare products, it’s best to do a patch test and check with your dermatologist first before using it.
Where to buy SK-II?
If you’re looking to get started on your PITERA journey and glow up check out the SK-II website to find out more, or visit any of the counters once the circuit breaker period is over.
PITERA Essence: $289 for 230ml
GenOptics Aura Essence, $199 for 30ml, $299 for 50ml
R.N.A Power Airy Milky Lotion, $149 for 50g, $228 for 80g
– Brought to you in collaboration with SK-II –