WHY ALL THE HYPE AROUND NIACINAMIDE? DISCOVER BOOTS GLOW SKINCARE

After recently trying Boots Vitamin C Brightening skincare range and being particularly impressed with the Sleeping Mask, I was looking forward to testing the Boots Glow range. It seems the health and beauty giant has been taking inspiration from other very successful skincare ranges. The brightening claims and orange packaging of the Vitamin C collection makes it a dupe for Ole Henriksen’s Truth range, and the Glow collection bears a resemblance to Glossier’s rounded bottles or even Clinique’s bestselling millennial pink Moisture Surge collection.

So how does it deliver that elusive glow? With an ingredient you may have already heard about, and if not soon will: niacinamide. This is the active form of vitamin B3, known for its soothing and healing properties (source: Elle.com). A multi-tasking ingredient, niacinamide helps to tackle a wide range of skin concerns:

  • environmental damage – particularly relevant if you live in an urban area
  • uneven skin tone – make sure you follow up with SPF so as not to undo the good work!
  • mild acne thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties
  • fine lines – it has a positive effect on collagen production

Can the Boots Glow range, with all 8 vegan and cruelty-free products priced at an unbeatable £4.00 each, deliver on results? I put the full collection to the test.

Boots Glow range

Boots Glow Cleansing Oil

I’m a fan of cleansing balms (my current favourite is Alexa Sky Botanicals One Balm) as they effectively remove makeup and dirt without drying out skin, so I was keen to try my first cleansing oil. During an online skincare consultation, Votary Co-Founder Arabella Preston recommended I use a cleansing oil, less congesting than a balm cleanser but more effective at removing makeup than a wash-off cleanser. I applied 6 squirts to a cotton pad and wiped over my face (not suitable on eyes though), then rinsed off with water and patted dry. My skin felt so clean, soft and smooth I was wowed by the result. As a wash off product this doesn’t contain niacinamide, however a word of warning: liquid paraffin is listed as the first ingredient. This is a petroleum by-product that can clog pores so probably not be suitable for all skin types. 100ml RRP £4.00 

Boots Glow Cleansing Stick

Another cleansing format I’m not familiar with, this stick is super compact and can be combined with the Glow Cleansing Oil if you’re into double cleansing – although Arabella Preston specifies that you don’t need two different products for an effective double cleanse. Also containing liquid paraffin (although further down the ingredients list so probably in lower concentration), I rubbed the stick directly over skin in circular motions before adding water to my fingers and massaging all over my face to create a light creamy lather. As with the cleansing oil I followed up with a thorough rinse with water to reveal clean skin without a hint of dryness. Although I preferred the feeling of the Cleansing Oil, this is a good washbag option. 30g RRP £4.00

Boots Glow skincare

Boots Glow Tonic

I love how easy toners are to use: soak a cotton pad, swipe over face and watch in grossed out delight as the white pad picks up all the dirt. Very satisfying. Out of all 8 products in the Boots Glow range I have a feeling this is the product I’m going to run out of first, as I’m using it morning and evening and find the fresh dewy result very gratifying. It’s a little tingly though so if you have very sensitive skin you may want to do a patch test first. With Niacinamide being the fourth ingredient listed I’m hoping the formula has a decent concentration of this all-rounder, and the initial results on my skin would certainly indicate that. 100ml RRP £4.00

Boots Glow Essence

Boots Glow Essence

If the Tonic is the first product I’ll be featuring in an upcoming empties post, then the Essence won’t be far behind. A little like a serum but lighter in texture, essences hail from Korea and have found a place in our skincare routines. This offering from Boots is so light, hydrating and refreshing it reminds me of Vichy’s Mineral 89 Booster. I dot 3 drops onto my forehead and cheeks and massage into clean skin, adding another layer of product containing niacinamide. This is a keeper for me. 28ml RRP £4.00

Boots Glow Eye Cream

For such a reasonable price this feels like a very good product. Creamy, light and soothing, this eye cream brings the right amount of hydration to the delicate eye area. I pat a pip-sized amount across both eyes, taking the product up to my brow bone. 15ml RRP £4.00

Boots Glow Gel Mask

Boots Glow Moisturising Cream

The first thing I noticed when unboxing this range was the scent. All products (except for the fragrance-free eye cream) weirdly smell of bubblegum. An odd, artificial smell which may fit in with the girlie pink packaging but doesn’t seem necessary (or even particularly desirable) if it doesn’t emanate from an ingredient with a purpose. Nevertheless the scent doesn’t linger on skin and after a few days I barely notice it. It would be great to know the niacinamide concentration in this cream as it’s the second ingredient listed (it would seem that 4% delivers results). Combined with the tonic and essence, the cream can be used morning and evening for a hydrated yet matt complexion. I personally prefer more of a dewy finish but if you’re after a matt finish or have oily skin this formula would be ideal. 50ml RRP £4.00

Boots Glow Gel Mask

I was so impressed with Boots Vitamin C Sleeping Mask that I had high hopes for this Glow Mask. Designed to be applied 2 to 3 times a week, I just about remember to use one mask a week, and this fuss-free version made the task easy. I apply a generous layer of this milky white translucent texture onto clean skin and leave to sit for 20 minutes before wiping off with a damp muslin cloth for a little exfoliating action. My skin looks refreshed, hydrated and soothed, although I still prefer the Vitamin C Mask for that instant radiance boost. 50ml RRP £4.00

Boots Glow Brightening Mist

Boots Glow Brightening Mist

On the Boots website this mist is described as ‘microfine’. It is not. Refreshing, yes (especially if stored in the fridge). Brightening – well it certainly gives a dewy finish. But ‘microfine’ is not the first word that springs to mind to describe the generous dousing I receive with every spray. Will I use up every last drop? Oh yes most definitely. 100ml RRP £4.00

Overall these products deliver a solid performance at a great price, with my favourites being the Tonic and Essence. What I really appreciate across the whole range is how clearly the recycling guidelines are communicated. Thanks to OPRL (On Pack Recycling Label) labelling, which you typically find on food packaging, the guesswork is taken out of it. I can see at a glance how to dispose of my empties. About 50% of the range is recyclable, with the Tonic being the most sustainable out of the collection as both the bottle and cap are recyclable (whereas with the oil and mist only the bottle is, not the pump). Sadly the tubes are not yet recyclable, but I hope that this will improve as new packaging solutions become more mainstream.

Features gifted products.

3 thoughts on “WHY ALL THE HYPE AROUND NIACINAMIDE? DISCOVER BOOTS GLOW SKINCARE

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