Oily Skin Concerns – Review of Clinique Pep-Start HydroBlur Moisturizer

Raise your hands if you’ve got oily skin concerns. It’s not a competition but I bet my skin is oilier than yours. I’ve yet to meet anyone other than my mum who’s face produces as much oil as mine.

I loathe it and even though they tell you that oily skin is less prone to wrinkles which means you look 20 at 40 years of age, I still don’t care for it.

What causes oily skin?

There are many factors that contribute to the production of oil on your skin. Diet, genes, weather are just a few. I can’t do anything about my genes, not much I can do about the weather either. But I do have control over my diet although cutting out butter, crisps, cake, ice cream and all that good stuff is quite THE commitment. I’d rather have an oil-free face without the diet restrictions. I’m sure I’m not the only one. I want to have my cake and eat it – literally.

Treatment for oily skin

There are ways to treat oily skin by increasing your consumption of certain foods like almond oil, leafy green vegetables, oranges, berries etc. But if you’re not one for fruits and veggies aka the healthy stuff then your skincare regime has to be on point.

Oily skin is especially exacerbated in summer and it’s why most people prefer not to wear makeup or at the very least wear minimal makeup during this season. The sweat, sun/heat all mixed together create what I call “melt face”, a term that is used to refer to a face that is just glistening with oil.

It really is quite a nuisance to constantly have to blot oil off your face or to touch up with press powder. I don’t want to not wear makeup because I’ve been unfortunate or fortunate enough to be born with oily skin and I also don’t want to have to do so much to avoid looking like the inside of a greased non-stick pan.

So, I went shopping for skincare products at Edgars the other day. 2018 is the year of fabulousity and what better way to show you’re fabulous than with clear, flawless shine-free skin?

I walked into Edgars like a woman on a mission and right on cue, someone came to ask me if there was something they could help me with. “I am looking for skincare products that would not only make my face look flawless but also shine-free”, I proclaimed.

Sensai was recommended and tested on my face. The sales representative for the brand wiped off the makeup I’d applied that day, exfoliated, cleansed and moisturised my skin with Sensai products and while the products felt great on my skin, I was hesitant to spend so much money on another product that possibly wouldn’t be ride or die for my skin. Don’t you just hate it when you spend so much money on a product expecting fireworks but you get firecrackers instead? I’ve had that and I’ve come to realise that expensive doesn’t always mean effective.

Clinique Pep-Start 8-hours oil control review

Clinique is a brand I have known about since I was a teenager. It’s not cheap and neither is it expensive. It’s right in the middle, a mid-range product, I’d say.  I’ve used Clinique on and off a few times and I don’t have any complaints. Not knowing whether to take a chance and spend a lot of money on something new or go with the tried and tested, I reluctantly went to the Clinique counter because I was looking for something new but force of habit led me to the familiar. If it ain’t broke…

I told the Clinique beauty consultant about my skin concerns; oily, large pores, prone to breakouts. I explained to her that I still have the Clinique Clarifying Lotion Cleanser and the Clinique Moisturizing Lotion but needed a cream to help combat the oil and keep my face looking flawless.

To which she suggested that I try the Clinique Pep-Start HydroBlur Moisturizer. It retails for R435 but she suggested that I get the Pep Start 8 hours Oil Control Concern Kit for just R200 more at R600 and that’s what I did because I love a good bargain! (It seems to retail for less now and is R450 on the Edgars website).

The kit contains:

  1. Pep-Start Hydroblur Moisturizer – 50ml (full size)

This moisturizer is light-weight, oil-free and fragrance-free. It claims to instantly blur imperfections, provide hydration while giving you a matte finish. You can wear it alone without makeup or under your foundation. You can even apply it over your foundation but I haven’t tried that yet.

Verdict– I’ve been using this product for over a week now and I love it!  It’s got a light rose pink colour  (I think, I’m not so good with colours)and is lightweight. It’s moisturising without being oily. I haven’t noticed that it blurs out any imperfections on my face. My large pores are still visible after applying it BUT when I put on makeup over the moisturiser, my skin looks flawless and matte with a glow. You can skip the primer process because this moisturizer primes well. If I had to rate it, I’d give it a 7 out of 10 because it doesn’t completely keep the shine off my face. The first four hours my face still looked matte but by the 5th hour, my face was beginning to glisten although not as much as it would have on another product/primer . Next time I’ll do the powder before foundation trick after I apply the Pep-Start Hydroblur Moisturizer just to see if it controls the oil for longer.

I always do the powder before foundation trick but skipped this step particularly to test this product fairly.

2. Pep-Start Eye Cream – 15ml (full size)

This eye cream is said to hydrate, brighten and refresh. You can apply any time you feel your eyes need a boost.

Verdict: I personally haven’t seen the benefits. I could be rubbing vaseline under my eyes for all the difference it’s made but then again, I’ve yet to find an undereye cream that impresses me. I’d give this cream a 4/10. It’s cute, nifty but I can’t say I’ll be reaching for it again after I run out.

 3. Clinique Pop™ Lip Colour and Primer in Plum pop

Creamy matte lip colour and primer.

Verdict: I love this lip colour for two reasons; it is creamy and moisturising on the lips yet has a matt finish. It is essentially a primer but I use it as a nude lippie. The only negative is that it cakes a little and dries after prolonged wear but nothing I can’t handle. I’ll score it a 7.5/10.

4. Liquid Facial Soap Oily Skin Formula – 30ml

For cleansing without stripping skin of protective lipids

Verdict: I love this one. It does what it says. The liquid soap is gentle yet cleansing leaving my face feeling revived and refreshed in a way. It’s like it cleans my skin while moisturising it without the  heaviness of oil. I give it an 8.5 /10.

My steps

1. Wash my face with Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Oily Skin Formula.
2. Use cotton wool to cleanse with Clinique Clarifying Lotion
3. Apply Clinique Moisturizing Lotion
4. Apply Pep-Start Eye Cream under my eyes
5. Use Pep-Start Hydroblur Moisturizer

The final step is when I use my foundation brush to apply the Clinique Anti-Blemish Foundation which is not only oil-free but has some anti-bacterial properties that help prevent blemishes.


Picture 1 – 0hrs, Picture 2 – 4hrs later, Picture 3 – 6hrs later

My overall impression is good. I would definitely recommend it. So it didn’t leave my face matte for 8 hrs but it’s worked better in controlling the oil on my face than any other product I’ve ever tried so it gets a thumbs up from me. The flawless finish I also get after applying my foundation on top of the Hydroblur moisturizer is out of this world.

I also found the kit to be a great purchase because I saved some money. If I’d bought each item individually, I’d have spent R1170 but instead I spent half of that. I feel like  I’m #winning!

Have you tried the Clinique Pep-Start Hydroblur Moisturizer? What are your impressions? Yay or Nay?

Thanks for reading. If you’ve enjoyed reading this post and want to see me do more product reviews, please leave a comment down below. x

9 thoughts on “Oily Skin Concerns – Review of Clinique Pep-Start HydroBlur Moisturizer”

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