Put to the test: Estée Lauder Perfectionist Pro Rapid Brightening Treatment Ferment 3 + Vitamin C

13 April 2021

In the quest for radiant skin, FQ editor Nicole Saunders puts Estée Lauder's latest innovative skincare serum through its paces.

It often feels like no matter how sun smart you are over the summer months, pesky pigmentation decides to plague once-luminous complexions come autumn. You can religiously slather on sunscreen, don a wide-brim hat and seek shade as much as possible but dull skin tends to turn up just as summer decides to depart. 

And while it would be easy to blame the warmer weather and sunshine for all our pigmentation-related complexion woes, hormones, lifestyle, pollution, and acne scarring are just a few other factors that can exacerbate uneven skin tone.

Fortunately, there’s no shortage of innovative skincare products formulated to reduce pigmentation and enhance skin radiance. In fact, two newcomers to Estée Lauder’s skincare collection harness a potent cocktail of skin health-boosting ingredients to restore skin to all its luminous glory in just a matter of weeks.

To find out how Perfectionist Pro Rapid Brightening Treatment Ferment3 + Vitamin C – the superstar serum from the duo of new arrivals – stacks up, Fashion Quarterly editor Nicole Saunders put it to the test.

The Details

Rain, hail or shine, a daily SPF is a crucial part of my skincare routine. And while I always up the ante on protecting my skin from the sun over the warmer months, I always seem to end up with more pigmentation than I had when summer started. 

With this in mind, during the post-summer months, I tend to find myself on a quest to find skincare that promises to boost skin health, hydration and luminosity. However, this autumn, I didn’t have to spend too long hunting for said skincare as Estée Lauder answered all my skincare prayers in the nick of time with Perfectionist Pro Rapid Brightening Treatment Ferment3 + Vitamin C. 

The clever formulation harnesses the radiance-boosting properties of not one but three ferments and one of my favourite go-to skincare ingredients, vitamin C – which you can read more about here. By unlocking the rejuvenating properties of these ingredients, the serum promises to stop pigmentation in its tracks, promote hydration and help prevent the appearance of new pigmentation. What’s not to love? 

The Verdict

Estée Lauder has garnered a reputation for effective skincare that’s easy to use for good reason. While our skincare routines might have expanded rapidly to the point of being somewhat mind-boggling over the past few years, Estée Lauder has taken an uncomplicated approach with Perfectionist Pro Rapid Brightening Treatment Ferment3 + Vitamin C.

The ingredients and the results are indeed game-changing. Still, it’s a straightforward product to incorporate into your existing routine, and the ritual of applying the serum is easy too. Because, let’s face it – if you’re anything like me, you want skincare that works: you don’t want to spend hours each morning and evening deciphering the order in which to apply skincare. 

The first thing I notice about the serum when it comes to applying it to my skin – which I do twice daily after cleansing and before my day and night moisturiser – is it’s lightweight and quick-absorbing. A definite plus, as ‘treatment’ products often end up weighing skin down and don’t always play nice with the following steps in your routine.  

While I try to adopt a ‘good things take time’ mentality where skincare is concerned, thanks to advances in skincare research and development, ingredients are more effective than ever before, which means quicker results. Perfectionist Pro Rapid Brightening Treatment Ferment3 + Vitamin C boasts improved skin texture in just one week and improved tone, and reduced dark spots and acne marks in four weeks. 

Although vitamin C’s is frequently praised for its radiance-enhancing properties, it’s also an ingredient that’s essential for boosting skin hydration and collagen production. In other words, the serum is just what I need post-summer. Not only does my skin tend to be a little on the lacklustre side, but it is also a little dehydrated and not as smooth as I would like it to be. 

Lucky for me, these are a few of the common skin woes that the Perfectionist Pro Rapid serum remedies within a week or so. My skin looks and feels plumper, hydrated and starts to feel a whole lot smoother after a week of use.

The best results always come with regular use, and Perfectionist Pro Rapid Brightening Treatment Ferment3 + Vitamin C is no exception. By the end of week two, my skin is noticeably more radiant, and as I start week three, I’m finding myself needing a little less foundation than usual.

Once autumn arrives, I would switch out my lightweight summer foundation for a formula with more coverage in an attempt to hide new pigmentation that’s popped up. But with the latest addition to my skincare routine working its magic to restore luminosity to my skin, even out skin tone and improve overall skin texture and health, a fuller-coverage foundation seems unnecessary. 

By the end of my fourth week of using Perfectionist Pro Rapid Brightening Treatment Ferment3 + Vitamin C, the serum has become a mainstay in my daily skincare routine. I look forward to applying it each morning and evening, as it is doing wonders for my skin tone and texture. I’ve noticed my cheeks – where patches of pigmentation tend to appear – are much clearer, my skin looks well hydrated and overall, my complexion looks a lot healthier. 

Now all I need to do is work Estée Lauder Perfectionist Pro Rapid Brightening Essence Ampoules – which you can read about here – into my routine when my skin radiance needs a real super-charged boost. 

The clever ampoules are designed to be used over a month when your skin needs an extra helping hand to get glowing once again.  I’ll be sure to have a month’s supply on hand prior to a special event or post a hectic magazine deadline that can often take a toll on my complexion.

Perfectionist Pro Rapid Brightening Treatment Ferment3 + Vitamin C ( $218, 50ml. $158, 30ml) and Perfectionist Pro Intense Brightening Essence Ampoules ($218 for a 28-day treatment) are available now from selected department stores, pharmacies and esteelauder.co.nz.

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