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Centella asiatica is a really popular ingredient that shows up in lots of “cica” products, both in Asian and Western brands. I recently had the opportunity to try out three products from Purito’s Centella Green Level line, which contains very high levels of this trendy skincare superstar ingredient.
What Is Centella Asiatica?
I’ve talked about the science behind Centella asiatica before in this skincare ingredient spotlight.
Centella asiatica is a herb that’s been used in cooking and traditional medicine in Asia. It contains chemicals called terpenoids that have beneficial properties for skin. Some of the active terpenoids include asiatic acid, madecassic acid, asiaticoside and madecassoside. They all have similar properties: they’re wound healing, anti-wrinkle, anti-pigmentation, anti-irritant and antioxidant.
Purito is a Korean brand that uses natural ingredients in their products. Their products help skin “go back to basics” – to relieve compromised skin barrier function and restore skin health. They also comply with the EWG “Green Level” system and are vegan and cruelty-free, and donate a portion of profits to Best Friend Animal Society.
The three Purito products I tried were the Centella Green Level Calming Toner, Buffet Serum and Recovery Cream. They all contain very high amounts of Centella extract, which means that they’re great for treating damaged skin, reducing wrinkles and fine lines, fading sun-induced pigment and post-acne hyperpigmentation, calming down irritated and inflamed skin, and preventing oxidative free radical damage.
Purito Centella Green Level Calming Toner
Purito Centella Green Level Calming Toner ($23.10 for 200 mL) is an alcohol-free toner with a skin-friendly pH of 5.5 that contains 10% centella asiatica extract. It also has panthenol, a form of vitamin B5 which can help strengthen and calm skin, and hyaluronic acid which is a highly effective humectant moisturiser which binds water to the surface of the skin.
The toner is a fair bit thicker than your usual Western toner. It has more of a essence-like texture, but it sinks in quickly and doesn’t leave a sticky or tacky layer on the skin. This is likely due to the lower amount of humectants, so the flip side is that it might not be hydrating enough on its own if your skin is very dehydration-prone or if the weather is very dry. The scent is very mild. It feels cooling and calming, and I think it’s a good way to weightlessly add a centella product to your routine.
Ingredients: Water, Centella Asiatica Extract, Butylene Glycol, Pentylene Glycol, Dipropylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Panthenol, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Extract, Glycerin, Allantoin, Trehalose, Polyglyceryl-10 Laurate, Carbomer, Polyglyceryl-10 Myristate, Arginine, Ethylhexylglycerin, Disodium EDTA, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Pelargonium Graveolens Flower Oil, Cananga Odorata Flower Oil, Rose Flower Oil
Purito Centella Green Level Buffet Serum
Purito Centella Green Level Buffet Serum ($20.50 for 60 mL) is my favourite product from the Centella Green Level range. It contains a massive 49% centella extract, which is one of the highest I’ve seen in a skincare product. There’s also added centella terpenoids asiaticoside, asiatic acid and madecassic acid (just in case the 49% wasn’t enough!) for stronger centella benefits.
This serum also has a bunch of anti-aging peptides (palmitoyl hexapeptide-12 (pal-KTTKS), palmitoyl tripeptide-1 (pal-GHK), palmitoyl tetrapeptide-7 (part of Matrixyl 3000) and palmitoyl dipeptide-10). Additionally, there’s adenosine, an anti-inflammatory ingredient that may increase collagen and decrease wrinkles, and panthenol for soothing skin, and niacinamide (vitamin B3) as well, which has a host of fantastic skin benefits (restoring the skin barrier, reducing hyperpigmentation, helping with acne and evening out skin tone). To help more with barrier repair there’s ceramide NP, a naturally occurring substance in the skin that’s lowered in dry skin. There’s also a healthy dose of humectants as well, including glycerin, hyaluronic acid, and some glycols.
The Buffet Serum is a clear gel that comes in a pump bottle. It has a very subtle herbal lavender scent that goes away quickly after application. It leave a slightly tacky, hydrated feeling on your skin after it sinks in, but it doesn’t feel sticky or uncomfortable. It’s fantastically hydrating for my dehydration-prone skin, and I can use it without an extra moisturiser at night in summer.
I’ve also found that it’s a great addition to my tretinoin routine and to my travel bag. The serum is light enough that it fits in easily into both my day and night routines, and is fantastic for relieving dry and irritated skin. I took it with me overseas to Europe, and it’s been a lifesaver after long flights in dry airplane air.
The Buffet Serum works best if you use it consistently – after the first night I tried it I wasn’t particularly impressed, but after using it for 3 nights in a row I could see my skin calm down and pigmentation start to fade. The barrier repair effects were pretty obvious too, and I got much less flaking than I usually do with tretinoin.
Ingredients: Centella Asiatica Extract, Water, Dipropylene Glycol, Glycerin, Niacinamide, Butylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Glycereth-26, Carbomer, Arginine, Sclerotium Gum, Hydrolyzed Jojoba Esters, Sodium Hyaluronate, Asiaticoside, Asiatic Acid, Madecassic Acid, Palmitoyl Hexapeptide-12, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-1, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Palmitoyl Dipeptide-10, Caprylyl Glycol, Polyglyceryl-10 Myristate, Panthenol, Polyglyceryl-10 Laurate, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Pancratium Maritimum Extract, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Disodium EDTA, Adenosine, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Ceramide NP
Purito Centella Green Level Recovery Cream
Purito Centella Green Level Recovery Cream ($20.50 for 50 mL) also contains a very high level of Centella extract: 50%. Again, like in the Buffet Serum, there’s extra asiaticoside, asiatic acid and madecassic acid. There’s also 2% niacinamide, ceramide, and humectants (hyaluronic acid and glycerin).
This cream also contains some emollient moisturising ingredients, like squalane, a stabilised version of a lipid that’s naturally in your skin, as well as some oils (caprylic/capric triglyceride, macadamia and argan oils, and shea butter).
I was surprised by how light the texture of this cream was, having used much thicker cica creams in the past. This is closer to a gel moisturiser, and sinks in easily while being very hydrating. For drier skin and harsher weather, I’d recommend layering or mixing an oil with it. I’ve been using it with oil at night since my skin is dried out from tretinoin, but it would make a good standalone moisturiser if your skin is oily but dehydration-prone.
The results on my skin weren’t quite as impressive as the Buffet Serum, but they were similar (fading pigment, soothing skin, decreasing flakiness). I would recommend the serum over this, but if the serum alone isn’t giving you enough results, this would be a good pairing. On my skin, this didn’t trigger any clogged pores or breakouts. The scent is a slightly heavier version of the Buffet Serum’s herbal lavender scent.
Ingredients: Centella Asiatica Extract (50%), Water, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Squalane, Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Niacinamide (2%), Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Butylene Glycol, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter Extract, 1,2-Hexanediol, Tribehenin, Stearic Acid, Behenic Acid, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Tromethamine, Spent Grain Wax, Carbomer, Caprylyl Glycol, Tremella Fuciformis (Mushroom) Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Perilla Ocymoides Seed Extract, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Extract, Betaine, Beta-Glucan, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, Xanthan Gum, Sodium Carbomer, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Cholesterol, Adenosine, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Asiaticoside, Asiatic Acid, Phytosphingosine, Ceramide, Madecassic Acid, Tocopherol (Vitamin E)
For more information on Purito, you can visit the Purito website.
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