10 Intimidating Skin Care Products You Need To Try From Sephora

10 Intimidating Skin Care Products You

Sephora is a not-so-secret beauty treasure trove filled with thousands of eyeshadows, lipsticks, beauty inventions, and an interesting mix of makeup-obsessed customers. Nestled among the traditional foundation bottles and makeup brushes, there are some makeup products that look downright intimidating and a few weird-looking hair products. You can’t help but pick it up and wonder what the heck is this odd beauty gadget, and if it is really meant for your face. Not only do they have some strange-looking makeup products, they have their fair share of sci-fi-esque skin care products as well. These 10 products might look different than your traditional lotions, but they offer just as good results–if not better.

1. Caudalie Beauty Elixir, $18

Caudalie Beauty Elixir

Sometimes products names are mysteries in themselves. “Beauty elixir” sounds like something a suspicious witch would offer you, claiming it gives you internal youth. That actually isn’t too far off. This is a part-serum, part-toner that you spritz on your face. It shrinks pores and improves the radiance of your skin, for glowy skin without the facial

2. Perricone MD Blue Plasma, $95Perricone MD Blue Plasma

This genuinely looks like something you would find in a mad scientist’s lab. Look at that color! This weird liquid is actually a non-acidic facial peel that is meant for daily use. The “non-acidic” part means that it won’t irritate or make your skin go bright red like traditional harsh peels. That justifies the price. Sort of.

3. Tarte Brazilliance Skin Rejuvenating Maracuja Self Tanning Face Towelettes, $21Tarte Brazilliance™ Skin Rejuvenating Maracuja Self Tanning Face Towelettes

Self-tanner is an intimidating product no matter what kind of packaging it comes in. A lot of us forgo self-tan on our faces entirely, preferring to use bronzer instead of ending up with a streaky forehead. These face towelettes actually make tanning a lot easier. Just rub them around your face like you would a washcloth, and you’ll be left with a natural-looking tan.

4. Clinique Sonic System Purifying Cleansing Brush, $89.50

Clinique Sonic System Purifying Cleansing Brush

You’ve probably read about the cult Clarisonic brushes, but are probably dubious whether they make your skin look that noticeably different (at least enough to justify the $100+ price). Clinique has come out with their own version, which is suitable for all skin types and leaves skin squeaky-clean. They may look funny, but sonic cleansing brushes are the way of the future.

5.  Josie Maran Argan Cleansing Oil, $12Josie Maran Argan Cleansing OIl

Think “cleansing oil” is an oxymoron? You’re not the only one. Fighting a greasy complexion with more oil seems counterproductive, but cleansing oils are very effective at removing dirt and makeup. Don’t worry, they’re not greasy. Cleansing oils can actually help reduce excess oil. Who would have thought?

6. Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask Pods, $8Origins Clear Improvement® Active Charcoal Mask Pods

If it’s not in a tube or a bottle, I am normally uncertain about a new product. I’m even more suspicious when the skin product is black and resembles tar, when most of the lotions we see are white. These pods are brilliantly divided for a single use, so you will never use too much product. The mask’s ingredients, charcoal and China white clay, are described as “nature’s complexion clean-up crew” and get rid of all the gunk from your pores, for a more flawless complexion.

7. Peter Thomas Roth Instant Mineral Powder SPF 45, $30Peter Thomas Roth Instant Mineral Powder SPF 45

One would assume that this is a powder with a good dose of SPF protection, but it actually is a sunscreen, first and foremost. It might not be in the typical lotion form, but it helps protect against UVA and UVB rays and has SPF 45. The best part? It doesn’t have that sticky residue most sunscreens will give you. Instead you’re left with a radiant look.

8. boscia Konjac Cleansing Sponge With Bamboo Charcoal, $15boscia Konjac Cleansing Sponge With Bamboo Charcoal

A back loofah is probably the most “adventurous” beauty tool that you own. This sponge might look like something that you scrub dirty dishes with, but the bamboo charcoal-infused sponge is gentle enough for most skin types, particularly those with oily or combination skin. Used regularly, it will reduce the appearance of pores and help stop zits from forming.

9. Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm, $28.50Clinqiue Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm

You’ve heard of scrubs, face washes and foaming soaps, but you may not have heard of cleansing balms–or have yet to figure out exactly what they are. It might reassemble a jar of night cream, but this solid turns into a silky oil on your skin and removes every spot of makeup and dirt.

10. bareMinerals Exfoliating Treatment Cleanser, $26bare Minerals exfoliating treatment cleanser

For exfoliators to be effective they need to be grainy and contain all of those micro beads right? Wrong. This powder-based cleanser is just as effective for removing dead layers of skin, but is much more gentle. Just add a bit of water until it froths up, and massage away.

(Photo: Shutterstock)

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    • Jenni

      I’m one more recommendation away from buying the Clarisonic…or now the Clinque brush. Everyone raves so much that it’s time I just give in and get it.

      • Samantha111

        I think Ulta makes a version of it for less than $50. Plus you can use the coupons on it!

      • Anne Marie Hawkins

        TBH I have a $7 face brush from Sephora that I use dry every night, and that seems plenty exfoliating without irritating my skin. I really worry that something that goes at such high speeds would just leave me red. Like, serious sunburn red.

      • Heather C

        That is my concern too.

      • Jenni

        Hmm $7 seems like a more reasonable place to start.

    • http://nicolepallen.yelp.com Nicole

      I have tried the Tarte wipe and I found it works well if you swipe beyond a certain amount, you’ll turn a little orange. The actual tarte self bronzer works better as it comes out dark so you can see where you’re applying it and how it’s blending. Also, the Ole Henriksen Power Peel is amazing for skin. It delivers the benefits of microdermabrasion plus a peel.

    • Charmless

      So I was inspired to make some DIY facial masks and I bought a bunch of clay powders, essential oils, and activated charcoal.

      Word to the wise: if you’re going to make your own activated charcoal mask, be very, VERY (I CANNOT STRESS HOW VERY) careful about your proportions. You don’t need much at all. If you use too much, it stains.

      Your face.


      After vigorous scrubbing with sugar, olive oil, and DISH SOAP, during which I’m fairly certain I lost at least four layers of skin, I was no longer an accidental racist, but it was a major pain and made a huge mess in my bathroom.

      I will be purchasing ready-made activated charcoal beauty products from now on and that mask looks perfect..

      • Heather C

        Oh no! Did your DIY mask at least make your skin look good?

      • Charmless

        Nope I irritated my skin so badly trying to get the mask off that I didn’t even get to reap the benefits. :(

    • hannah

      I LOVE the Origins mask. i got the tube free with Birchbox points, which was awesome.

    • JennyWren

      I have to say, I was really, really impressed with Peter Thomas Roth’s Anti-Aging Cleansing Gel. It is, by far and away, the best cleanser I’ve ever used on my combination/oily skin- I could even use it during my bi-annual season-changing skin-freakout without any irritation. Unfortnately it’s very expensive, so I’m not getting any more until Christmas- but a 80z bottle will last about 4-5 months with judicious use (I would use it in the morning and use cheaper cleanser in the evening), so it’s really quite a good deal for the money.