It's finally starting to warm up here in New York (it's a whopping 56°F/13°C today! Woo!) Short sleeve weather soon? Please? In any case, I've already been testing out a bunch of body treatment products in the hopes of smoothing out the rough mess that is my skin so people don't recoil in horror when I take off my coat. The latest of the bunch: Paula's Choice Clinical KP Treatment Cloths, which are chemical exfoliant wipes designed to combat Keratosis Pilaris and body acne. So... do they work? Read on to find out!
"Wipe your KP woes away. And banish "bacne", too. These easy-to-use wipes improve the appearance of those little red bumps (like Keratosis Pilaris) and reveal smooth, even skin anywhere on the body. Clinical KP Treatment Cloths are infused with a lightweight, highly-effective, alcohol-free exfoliating formula that combines 8% lactic acid with 2% salicylic acid to improve the appearance of stubborn keratosis pilaris (more commonly known as “chicken skin”) anywhere on the face or body. Each cloth also adds soothing ingredients to skin so you’ll see KP-related redness replaced by a more even skin tone."
I mainly purchased these wipes to combat Keratosis Pilaris, so I'm not sure how they fare against bacne. I wish these came with a time machine, so I could give my poor little self-conscious teenaged bacne-ridden self a crate of them to sample. Ah, well.
US $32 for 60 wipes/treatment cloths or US
Water, Butylene Glycol (slip agent), Lactic Acid (alpha hydroxy acid/exfoliant), Propylene Glycol (moisture-binding agent), Aminomethyl Propanol (pH adjuster), Salicylic Acid (beta hydroxy acid/exfoliant), Polysorbate 20 (emulsifier), Boerhavia Diffusa Root Extract (plant extract/anti-irritant), Sodium Citrate (chelating agent), Potassium Sorbate (preservative), Disodium EDTA (stabilizer).
How to use:
"Apply once or twice daily to affected areas. Gently massage over clean, dry skin—do not rinse. One cloth provides enough solution for larger areas. Keep lid closed between uses to prevent cloths from drying out. Follow with moisturizer, if desired. For daytime, follow with a broad-spectrum sunscreen rated SPF 25 or greater."
"Larger areas" is sort of subjective. I find that I need two wipes for a typical application, but YMMV depending on your body size and how large the area you're treating is.
The wipes (I'm sorry, "treatment cloths") come in a fairly standard soft wet wipe container with a hard plastic closure. Much like baby wipes, the last few wipes in the pack can dry out due to repeated air exposure if you're not careful. I recommend storing them upside-down and inside another plastic container (like a freezer bag) to prevent that from happening.
The size, shape and texture of the wipes is also unremarkable—they don't have any special ridges or patterns or anything. Each cloth measures 8 x 6 inches (20.3cm x 15.2 cm). This is slightly larger than my hand. Do I have large hands for a woman? I guess I'm not sure. Hmm.
Like many AHA products, the Paula's Choice KP Treatment Cloths smell kind of sour, like spoiled milk. The scent isn't overwhelming and dissipates before too long, but don't expect them to smell amazing.
One of the first things I noticed about these wipes is how dry they were. For some reason I expected them to be absolutely soaked in essence, but they're definitely on the dry side, even when you first open the package. The plus side of that is that they won't drip everywhere and make a disgusting mess, but unfortunately it means that you may need more than one wipe depending on how much of your body you're treating. If I'm just doing my upper arms (which is where most of my KP occurs) I can get by with one wipe, but if I include forearms too (or any other body parts) then two or more wipes are necessary. This is a bit of a bummer since they're on the pricey side, but I guess my point is that you can expect one pack of wipes to last about a month if you're treating a large area of your body.
Now for the juicy part: How well did they work? It's important to note that I have been using Paula's Choice RESIST Skin Revealing Body Lotion (which contains glycolic acid, not lactic acid) for some time now and I've had great results with it. I was intrigued by the KP Treatment Cloths partially due to the convenience factor, but also because they contained AHA and salicylic acid—which supposedly is the best ingredient of them all when it comes to combating KP.
I switched over to the wipes about a month ago, and unfortunately, they turned out to be sort of "meh" for me. The treatment cloths definitely do exfoliate, but my skin doesn't feel as smooth as it does when I use the RESIST lotion. That coupled with the fact that the cloths are drier than I would like and that they're kind of pricey means that I probably won't repurchase them. If you're new to the world of body exfoliants I still think they may be worth a try though, because there are a few ways in which the KP cloths are superior to an AHA body lotion like RESIST:
- Lactic acid is a better choice for people who can't tolerate glycolic acid
- Probably better for sensitive skin—I feel less "tingly" after using these than with glycolic treatments
- Less "clammy" feeling after application
- More convenient. Seriously, wipes are the most convenient thing ever, and the packaging on the RESIST lotion annoys me extra-hard.
So yeah. I'll be passing on these in the future, but if you're in need of a body exfoliant for KP or acne that isn't ultra-harsh, these merit a look. Get the sample size first to make sure they agree with your skin!
Save $10 and/or 15% off your Paula's Choice order:
New Paula's Choice customers can get $10 off their first order $15+ by signing up through my referral link. That's valid towards anything on the site, woo! I also found a coupon code that will get you 15% off any order: AMGOODSHOPJAN. (Valid for new or existing customers, expires March 31st 2015). New customers can combine one % off coupon code with the referral bonus.
What do you think of the Paula's Choice Clinical KP Treatment Cloths? Do you have any favorite treatments for KP or body acne?
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