They’re not foam­ing cleansers or bub­bly face masks. Th­ese prod­ucts con­tain wa­ter in­fused with car­bon diox­ide. We find out if there’s any sub­stance be­hind the airy talk.

Herworld (Singapore) - - CONTENTS - - GYH

Car­bon diox­ide to jump­start slug­gish skin.

The idea be­hind car­bon­ated skin­care is the same as car­boxyther­apy – an aes­thetic treat­ment not of­fered in Sin­ga­pore where car­bon diox­ide (CO2) is in­jected into skin, caus­ing blood ves­sels in the area to di­late and bring in more oxy­gen for skin re­newal, en­hanced ra­di­ance and bet­ter skin­care ab­sorp­tion.

Ja­panese brand So­fina is among those that have bot­tled the ben­e­fits of CO2. Its sig­na­ture prod­uct, IP Do­dai Essence, has CO2 mi­crobub­bles that pen­e­trate deep into skin to stim­u­late blood cir­cu­la­tion. This is sup­posed to re­sult in bet­ter skin re­gen­er­a­tion.

Ahn Ryeo Eun, founder of South Korean brand Ceramine, says car­bon­ated wa­ter (car­bonic acid) is also a cleans­ing ace. By en­cour­ag­ing in­creased blood flow and oxy­gen to the skin, CO2 speeds up the nat­u­ral detox process. “Reg­u­lar cleansers may have al­ler­gens that ir­ri­tate sen­si­tive skin. But Ceramine’s Mir­a­cle Car­bon­ated-wa­ter Bub­ble Cleans­ing Foam uses nat­u­ral car­bonic acid with tiny car­bon diox­ide bub­bles, which clean ef­fec­tively with­out ir­ri­ta­tion,” she says.

How­ever, not ev­ery­one is buy­ing into it. Dr Tay Liang Kiat, a con­sul­tant der­ma­tol­o­gist and der­ma­to­logic sur­geon at the Der­ma­tol­ogy & Surgery Clinic, says that many prod­ucts cham­pi­oning the use of CO2 are cos­me­ceu­ti­cals or cos­met­ics with no sci­en­tif­i­cally proven and sig­nif­i­cant ben­e­fits.

“There are ther­a­pies with a seem­ingly log­i­cal sci­en­tific ba­sis or pos­tu­lated mech­a­nism of ac­tion, but they may not nec­es­sar­ily trans­late to clin­i­cal ef­fi­cacy and are not backed by ro­bust clin­i­cal ev­i­dence. More re­search and clin­i­cal tri­als are needed to prove the the­o­ret­i­cal ben­e­fits which th­ese treat­ments are sup­posed to pro­vide,” he says.

In the Hera Bub­ble Awak­en­ing Mask, mi­crobub­bles are gen­er­ated upon ap­pli­ca­tion to help clear out pores. This also makes for handy makeup prep, as it mois­turises and re­duces skin flak­i­ness. $38 One small blob of the So­fina IP Do­dai Essence’s fine, dense foam sup­pos­edly holds 20 mil­lion mi­crobub­bles of CO2 to kick-start slug­gish skin. $85 The car­bon­ated wa­ter in Ceramine Mir­a­cle Car­bon­at­ed­wa­ter Bub­ble Cleans­ing Foam comes from a ge­o­log­i­cal source and is said to be an­tibac­te­rial and an­ti­in­flam­ma­tory. $36 D’skin CO2 Gel Masque. The sheet mask and gel com­bine to cre­ate CO2. $169 for six sheets

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