La Roche-Posay Effaclar – The Mythbusting Series

MythBusting Effaclar

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Welcome to The Mythbusting Series, where we shed some light about the function and usage of our most popular products to help you make an informed choice about what’s best for your skin type.

In this post we’ll be taking a closer look at the best-selling La Roche-Posay Effaclar range. If you need any recommendations or further help, just leave a comment below and we’ll get back to you.

The La Roche-Posay Effaclar range offers a complete solution for all types of oily, imperfection and blemish-prone skin, designed to soothe, clarify and repair. All products in this range contain a dose of La Roche-Posay’s much-admired thermal spring water which helps skin to repair itself naturally and zinc which acts as an antibacterial agent to acne.

However, while that’s all well and good it’s the different kinds of effaclar products offered that leave us confused. Do you need Effaclar H, Effaclar Mat or Effaclar K? It’s a real minefield! Well worry no more, as we’ve resolved this conundrum below!


Effaclar Mat

So, what’s Effaclar Mat?

Simply put, Effaclar Mat is best for those who’re looking to reduce oily shine and mattify skin. It works to regulate sebum production and reduce the appearance of enlarged pores to leave skin shine-free and smooth all day. It’s oil-free, lightweight gel-crème formula contains Sebulyse, a sebo-regulating active ingredient which acts as an oil blotter and is clinically proven to mattify skin and tighten pores.

So, if you suffer with skin that’s generally clear but shiny and oily day after day this is the moisturiser for you. It’ll work hard to keep the oil at bay whilst also gently hydrating and refining. Great as a make-up base and suitable for even sensitive skin.


Effaclar K

Effaclar K explained!

Effaclar K has been specifically formulated to repair irregular skin texture and clear out clogged up pores. It’s best suited to those who suffer with uneven, imperfection prone oily skin and those with painful, tight, bumpy under the skin spots: the kind that linger underneath the skin but never surface with a head. Effaclar K is particularly good at unclogging these irregularities and improving the appearance of bumps and all other types of spots by refining the texture of oily skin.

If the above sounds like you, then the Effaclar K Daily Renewal Moisturiser might just be what your skin has been waiting for. This daily renewal fluid will transform the feel of imperfection-prone, oily skin thanks to a blend of Mircoexfoliant LHA, and Retinol Linoleate in the formula which work together to unclog pores and supply a targeted micro-exfoliation to reveal a smoother, radiant complexion. Perfect for morning use as a make-up base, similar to the much loved Effaclar Duo+.


Effaclar H

What’s the deal with Effaclar H?

In a nutshell, Effaclar H has been developed to repair fragile, acne-prone oily skin that has been weakened by prior use of skincare products that have dried out and stripped the skin of its natural oils. So, if you’ve mistreated your skin in the past with misguided skincare choices or harsh acne treatments like Roaccutane that have left your skin feeling sore, thin and delicate then this is the range for you, no matter your age.

There are two products in this group, both of which can be used together if necessary. Firstly we’ve got the Effaclar H Soothing Compensation Moisturiser which provides skin with the lipids it desperately needs to rebuild the protective outer hydrolipidic film. An intact hydrolipidic film will prevent the entry of germs and bacteria into the skin, retains moisture and maintains the skin’s natural suppleness. The formula also contains Bisabolol which will calm irritation and reduce any inflammatory redness. After use the skin feels soothed, hydrated and most importantly, comfortable.

Also available in the Effaclar H range is the Dermo-Soothing Deep Cleansing Foam which will gently cleanse acne troubled, oily skin. Formulated specifically for those undergoing prescription acne treatments which are more often than not extremely drying, but also suitable for use for those whose skin is ultra-sensitive, prone to blemishes or break-outs as the ultra-light formula won’t strip the skin. The foam contains a blend of skin boosting ingredients including Squalane and Linoleic Acid which will maintain the strength of the hyrdolipidic film and Ceramide 5 which restores the skin’s barrier function.

Have a question about anything Effaclar? Get in touch below or tweet me @EscentualKay!

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  • Emma Rix

    Hi, I think effaclar K would be best for me to use but would I use it instead of or as well as effaclar duo? Em x

    • escentual

      Hi Em,

      If clogged and bumpy skin is causing more of a problem than imperfections and Effaclar Duo isn’t doing the trick, then switch to Effaclar K. It’ll really refine your skin.

      However, there’s nothing to say that you can’t switch and change between the two depending on how your skin’s feeling – I wouldn’t recommend layering the two products, though!

      Emma x

  • Quynh Anh

    i have pretty big acne scar (hypertrophic ones) I have used effaclar duo but it only improved the redness/ uneven color of the scar but not the texture. What products should i be using then? Thanks xx

    • escentual

      Hi Quynh, thanks for getting in touch!

      It’s great that Effaclar Duo improved the redness of your scars – the latest version of the cream (Effaclar Duo [+]) is even better for improving the colour of scars!

      As for improving the texture of scarring, it’s a little trickier. Effaclar K is fantastic for smoothing the texture of bumpy and oily skin in general, but for hypertrophic scarring I would recommend something optimised for damaged skin regeneration, such as La Roche-Posay Cicaplast. Use Cicaplast on the affected areas, and then carry on your Effaclar skincare routine as usual elsewhere.

  • Nicole

    Hello! I’ve recently started a course of antibiotics (lymecycline) for acne brought on by going back onto the pill. While my skin seems to be improving currently, the treatment is drying out the skin around the acne. I’ve used Effaclar Duo in the past but after reading this it seems H or K may be better as a daily morning moisturiser. Could you help?!

    • escentual

      Hi Nicole,

      Thanks for getting in touch!

      Effaclar H is the one for you. It’s specifically developed for those who are taking acne-related medication, which can make even skin feel dry and pretty uncomfortable. Effaclar H is a brilliantly balanced formula as it works on blemishes and marks, while providing skin with essential lipids. It also reduces irritation and builds up the hydrolipidic film, so skin is really soothed.

      Do let us know if you have any more questions!


  • Hannah Nicholas

    Hi, I’ve recently purchased the Effaclar Duo in hopes that it would help clear up my spotty teenage skin. I’ve been using it for a week and so far have seen no results, if anything my skin appears to have worsened which I’m very disappointed by. I am interested to know if this treatment is a long process that I should stick to or if there is anything I should be doing to help speed the process along? I really am praying that this treatment will work for me as it has done for so many others.

    • escentual

      Hi Hannah,

      I’m so sorry to hear that you’re not seeing the results you want yet – you’re still in the early days of using the treatment, so there’s still plenty of time for improvement!

      I’d love to help you further – email and we can have a chat, and I will also refer you through to La Roche-Posay who’ll be able to help you optimise your skincare routine.

      Emma x

  • escentual

    Hi Kate,

    Thanks for getting in touch, this is actually one of our most frequently asked questions! Effaclar Duo [+] is a global solution to imperfections and marks – it’s the first one to reach for if you have blemishes. Effaclar K is slightly different in that it specifically tackles the texture of your skin, working to smooth and perfect it. You can use both products as part of a treatment regime: use Effaclar Duo [+] to reduce the appearance of your blemishes over 6 weeks, and then switch to Effaclar K refine the texture of your skin. I hope that helps – Emma

  • escentual

    Hi! Those products sound perfect – K is amazing for spots without a head. As for using the treatments all over or just as a spot treatment, it depends on your overall complexion – if your blemishes are localised into small areas, or you have dry patches, then use the treatment just where it’s needed. But if your blemishes cover a larger area of your face, then it’s more than okay to use the treatment all over. Night time is a brilliant time to use the treatments. I hope that helps! – Emma

  • escentual

    Hi Kelly, this combination sounds great! You can use Effaclar Duo [+] as a serum-like step before moisturiser (Effaclar H is a great choice), or you can use it alone if you have oilier skin. Hope that helps!

    • Kelly Jones

      Thanks Emma!