Often, in the course of operating as a beauty journalist, I get mildly – occasionally wildly – excited by a new product, only to abandon it when the next big thing comes along. Fickle? Well only up to a point. And that point is when I realise that I’m seeing results beyond the initial, inevitable quick fix effect. The reason for explaining all this is that I’m approaching the end of my summer of serums, the serums Le Jour, La Nuit, Le Weekend de Chanel – which I started back in June – to be precise. And, as occasionally happens, I’m not ready to give them up without a fight – or at least without a reliable replacement because my skin has undoubtedly benefitted both in terms of appearance and how it feels.
The concept behind the trio of serums may have seemed a little gimmicky – “re-setting” the skin’s clock by giving the skin what it needs at the right time of day, and even the right time of the week – but it’s worked for me. I’m particularly smitten with the Nuit one which is extremely nourishing and smells gorgeous. I initially found that the Jour, which has the consistency of a runny gel, left my skin still feeling dehydrated so I used it in conjunction with my Chanel Hydra Beauty Serum for the first six weeks or so.
Each serum – one to be used in the morning, one to be used at night, and one to be used at the weekend – is quite different, and the ingredients have been determined by the pace of life and the natural rhythms in the skin. The idea is to “re-set” the skin’s clock: Chanel’s research boffins have discovered that most women’s skin has lost the notion of time – biological rhythms which used to be synchronised aren’t, because the pace of modern life gives no rest to skin.
Chanel has identified four aspects that together define what they call “exceptional skin quality” – luminosity (reflection of the light), plumped appearance, smooth surface and even complexion. And these new serums have been designed to meet the needs of “desynchronised” skin that is lacking these qualities. So, Le Jour – whose role is to “reactivate” the skin – contains a jasmine extract that kickstarts the cells in the complexion, and salicylic acid which gently exfoliates the skin, producing a radiant effect. La Nuit – whose role is to “recharge” – soothes the skin, thanks to a Frankincense extract, and uses hyaluronic acid to plump it up.
They are expensive so I asked top London facialist Sarah Chapman, who had roadtested the range before I got my hands on it, if there were any advantages to be had from just using one of them – and if so, which one? Her answer was “yes” – Le Weekend.
Indeed, Le Weekend is the most intriguing of the trio. Its role, say the Chanel scientists, is to “renew” the skin and “reset all counters back to zero”. Sarah explains: “At the weekend, you would put aside other serums and use this morning and evening. It uses a gentle glycolic acid to exfoliate and renew and rebalance the skin’s PH. After using it, your skin should look clearer and brighter and feel smoother, but it is also balanced and therefore ready to protect itself during the busy week ahead.”
While some serums are worth using as a short, intensive course every now and then, when the skin needs pepping up, Le Jour, La Nuit & Le Weekend de Chanel are designed to be used continuously as the results are ongoing. I’ve been using mine for over a month and can testify to the smoothness and increased radiance of the skin – and, as someone in her forties who is concerned about the effects on he complexion of ageing, it’s a nice feeling to know that, as the Stones said, “time is on my side”, rather than being my enemy.
* Le Jour de Chanel (£60), La Nuit de Chanel (£60) and Le Weekend de Chanel (£72) are all in shops now, and are also available in a coffret (£172). For stockist information, call 020-7493 3836.