Brand Showcase/Review: Deciem (NIOD/Hand Chemistry/HIF)

DECIEM: The Future is Now!

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I was quite oblivious to this brand until a good friend of mine (Hello Julia!) introduced me to them.

At first I was confused…Deciem? But Deciem is NOT a product…Deciem is not a single brand? What? Deciem has Niod? Hylamide?

I had -albeist out of my knowledge- been using their brand for some months (Grow Gorgeous and had seen Hylamide at CVS) and I absolutely LOVED the hair serum.

So I decided to get a crash course 101 on Deciem. I suggest you do too: http://www.deciem.com

But if you are in a rush and do not want to do some investigative work, let me give you the 101:

My first impression is that: wow, they are quite ambitious. They have managed to launch 9 brands (and more to come) and really have interesting and unique products in each of their brands.

See Deciem for me is like a mother that oversees their children; the children in this case being Niod, Hand Chemistry, Hylamide, HIF, White RX, Inhibitif, Ab Crew, Grow Gorgeous and Fountain.

Each of the brands are targeted to a certain type of need and consumer; luckily for me, I wanted to try as much as I could from the items that I had most interest in.

I will briefly describe (in my perception) what each of their brands are:

NIOD: Highly advanced skincare – meant for the conaisseur or the semi-pro at reading research papers in science (ahemm, theoretical physicist talking here), whom wants the latest and most cutting edge topical cosmetic. A ‘niche’ brand if you wish.

HAND CHEMISTRY: More ‘masse’ consumer – but still highly effective. Targeted mainly towards body-care or multi-purpose products. Features high concentrations of different hyaluronic acid forms and potent retinoids at affordable prices.

HYLAMIDE: I perceive this brand as the ‘introduction’ to NIOD; it features a lot of latest technology (i.e stabilized vitamin C at 25%, peptides and more) and more affordable than NIOD. I would say start here if you are unsure about the brand. Also more easily found (i.e CVS)

HIF: Shampoo+conditioner-in-1 philosophy. They have +15 different types of cleansing conditioners.

WHITE RX: Whitening/De-pigmenting series. It features non-hydroquinone options to reduce hyperpigmentation and bring about clarity on the skin. They also have cosmetic products to brighten the skin tone instantly.

INHIBITIF: Inhibits the growth of body hair/facial hair. They have about every product imaginable for this category; body serums, face serums, body creams, deodorant etc… that minimize body hair growth.

AB CREW: Seems to be geared more towards men, it is a line that would appeal to gyms/gym goers. From Caffeinated shampoo to protein powders…passing through fat burning gels.

GROW GORGEOUS: Another hair venture of theirs; this one aimed at helping to restore or accelerate hair growth cycle and improve hair / scalp health. It features their famous hair growth serum (in normal and extra potency) and different shampoos/conditioners and night masks.

FOUNTAIN: ‘Beauty’ Supplements if you wish. They have different series in their liquids that target skin glow, overall health, hair, memory, energy or mood. They all come in liquid format to be taken once or twice a day.

Now that you have a small intro on who Deciem is, let me start with the products that I currently have and can share my opinion.

 

 

 

WHITE RX:

I want to begin by saying: I have post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation from acne as well as some sun damage from when I was a child. I am extremely diligent with my sunscreen and I do not go ‘tanning’. My skin tone is about NW05 to NW 10 (when its full on summer). I can wear straight up white foundations.

I had already tried MANY things to lighten the spots on my face and I am (and have been for many years) using RX tretinoin cream – so my skin was not in a ‘bad’ shape to begin with.

I started using glycolic acid and RX anti aging products since I was 17 (prescribed by my dermatologist), so I have taken care of my skin extremely well.

But I was still frustrated with the hyperpigmentation that would not go away, especially on my neck.

I first got the serum and after about few days, my mom started asking me what I was doing to my neck because it looked snow white and bright.

Needless to say…I am absolutely beyond impressed at how well White RX activated serum has worked. It does not irritate my skin; quite contrary; I find it very soothing.

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It has quite a runny texture but is still thick; Skin feels very hydrated after this serum.

 

Next, I purchased the ‘instant’ cosmetic products from their line; knowing me…I wear mac f&b in white as my foundation on days that I feel too lazy…so I thought why not try those:

This one is the White RX White Flash; It is a runny-watery almost chalky/gritty liquid that instantly brightens up the complexion; especially if you are already very pale, this will right away conceal the redness and dullness that may appear on very fair skin tones. It has a slight blue undertone (which is hard to detect, but is there) and just leaves an immense brightness to the skin.

I like to apply this one as my last step; after my sunscreen. Now this contains titanium dioxide; which gives it that slight chalkiness. It disappears after blending it, but if you are sensitive to that, I do not recommend it.

I have also lightened some foundations with this one; it will sheer out the coverage, but it does a beautiful job at lightening ^_^

Next is the companion product, more of a primer, White Rx White Blur. This is like a silicone primer but it is white. It leaves the skin looking quite matte and bright as well, but the effect isn’t as obvious as with White Flash.

If applied on top of white flash, it will enhance the effect and make any make up application go flawless. It also helps to brighten any foundation you apply on top and if you find your foundation to look too yellow, this one helps at balancing out the undertones (a bit, no miracles here).

 

 

NIOD:

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Now, knowing me…I have tried both prescription and consumer cosmetic products. I have an incessant need to TRY the latest thing. I may not *need* it…but I need it if you know what I mean 😉

So it was a no-brainer that I would dive right in and start with NIOD.

I will not make this post very technical or scientific, because as mentioned earlier, you can click on the links and go right to the product description and read for yourself.

NIOD seems to have 2 approaches:

  1. Core Products; those that are meant to be applied year round regardless of skin type
  2. Specialized products or ‘add ons’ meant to enhance the effects of the Core products or target a specific problem that you might have at a certain point in time.

From my understanding, the Core products are:

-Low Viscosity Cleansing Ester or LVCE

-Copper Amino Isolate Serum or CAIS

-Multi-Molecular Hyaluronic Complex or MMHC

 

Then the add ons is basically everything else. But again, knowing me, I need it all. So I am here to tell you my opinion on each and keywords that might help you identify if that is something you need or would benefit from.

Let’s start with the CORE SERIES, Shall we?

Low Viscosity Cleansing Ester or LVCE (check HERE)

IMG_1654This is unlike ANY cleanser I have ever used before. Long story short: it dissolves absolutely everything and it acts as a vehicle for better penetration of subsequent products (serum, moisturizers etc…). It has an oily texture, doesn’t really rinse off…but magically the skin recuperate an amazing clarity comparable to having a facial peel!

First time I used it, I was on skype with my mom and I showed her and she wouldn’t believe that it was just the cleanser. She thought I had used a brightening mask or something.

This cleanser can be ‘rinsed’ off with warm water or tissued off. Either way is great.

I was afraid it would break me out but it did not. After trying this, I really am not interested in any other cleanser. Oh and did I mention is incredibly soothing?

Copper Amino Isolate Serum or CAIS (You can check it HERE)

This comes in 2 concentrations: 1% and 5%.

5% is reserved to skins that have undergone trauma or need immense recuperation. Long term it gives same results as 1%, hence save your money and stick to 1% unless you can justify the 5%.

This is a 2 part serum that are mixed together (the 1% pure copper tripeptide with the activator) and is a LONG TERM treatment. It is meant to restore cellular health (in a way, make cells behave like when they were younger) hence counteract many effects of aging on a deeper level than any serum could.

The results from this are not immediate; but rather on a 6 to 12 month span.

 

Multi-Molecular Hyaluronic Complex or MMHC (Check it out HERE)

 

This is the creme de la creme of Hyaluronic compounds. It has 12 different types of hyaluronic compounds in order to target many different aspects (did you know that most ‘hyaluronic acid’ in commercial products can’t really penetrate the skin because of the molecular size? Also many hyaluronic preparations can actually create a dependency in the sense that when you stop using them, your skin will feel more dehydrated. But fear not, this isn’t the case with this product).

With this product, results are seen a bit quicker. Around the 2-4 week mark. It can be used around eyes and I use it on top of my lips as well.

This product goes on top of CAIS.

After the ‘core’ series, we introduce the add ons:

FLAVONONE MUD: HERE

This is Niod’s concept of a face mask; it purifies on several different levels (one could say from inside out, opposed to traditional clay masks where it is only the surface) and it also has an anti-inflammatory agent.

Truly wonderful product for when your skin is feeling rebellious and overly congested. It can also be used in a kickstart method: applying it every day for 5 days in a row and then resuming normal application method.

Expect some tingles after rinsing (it does not contain acids, the tingles form from the ingredients that augment the blood circulation on the surface) and a very glowy and clean skin.

 

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Next up is Neck Elasticity Catalyst (NEC) (HERE)

This is actually a product that I have seen tremedous difference with. Granted, I do not *need* elasticity products per se, but I do have crepey-ness in my neck.

This truly corrects that within few weeks. It is no miracle product, but it has helped my excessive pigmentation, rough texture and eczema in my neck and chest area.

It can also be used spraingly on the upper eyelids to increase elasticity.

 

HYDRATION VACCINE (HV): (HERE)

This is unlike traditional ‘moisturizers’ in the sense that it does not add on more moisture but it seals all the serums and moisture present in the skin so it wont evaporate and cause dehydration.

It is truly a ‘sealant’ while allowing your skin to breathe.

It is very heavy in silicones, leaves a matte finish (think silicone primers) but it helps with irritation patches and dehydration. It also did not break me out at all.

I prefer to use this overnight and lately I have been mixing it with my Retin-A 0.1%. Amazing combo (I get less irritation from Retin-A when mixing it).

It is also a great sealant for airplaine trips where water evaporates from the skin very quickly.

 

 

PHOTOGRAPHY FLUID OPACITY 12% (HERE)

This is very different from the Hylamide Photography foundation.

It has a thick consistency and sets very quickly on your skin, but unlike Hylamide’s version, this one I can actually see with naked eye the textural improvement.

It is not a *must* have product, but if you are into natural glowy skin, minimal make up or just want to add an oomph to your foundation, you may want to give this a go.

It has a golden/yellow pearly particle.

 

FRACTIONATED EYE CONTOUR CONCENTRATE (HERE)

 

 

My Holy-Grail of eye creams/serums. Never have I seen such dramatic difference with an eye product before.

It is very watery but moisturizes even the driest eyes. It targets fine lines (yep), dehydration (yep) and dark circles (yep).

Plus you only need a very minimal amount (a tiny drop) per application, making it one of the most cost-effective eye serums out there.

An extra bonus: does not irritate my severly sensitive eyes and does not migrate to eyes.

 

ETHYLATED L-ASCORBIC ACID NETWORK 30% (HERE)

This is truly 30% vitamin c in a very stable form. Most Vitamin C’s degrade (unlike what many might say, when the product starts to turn in color, it has oxidised) due to the water content, and those alternative forms of vitamin c although stable, the effective amount that is delivered to the skin is very very low.

ELAN is truly stable because it does not use water in its formula and it has a push-pull mechanism for penetration; this means the product feels and behaves like an oil initially until it is absorbed. Then it feels like nothing.

30%, truly 30% delivered to your skin will give you an unparallel glow. I have personally not had any irritation from this and I use it every other night.

LIP BIO LIPID CONCENTRATE (here)

Super lip plumper. Forget everything you know about lip plumpers. This is the EMPRESS of lip plumpers.

Within few  minutes the lips are incredibly volumized and with a beautiful rosy color (from your own lips, no pigments here).

But its action isn’t limited to the cosmetic side: it targets lipid barried, hydration, collagen and volume over long term.

This is also a very cost-effective product, considering it replaces lip creams, lip balms and lip plumpers.

When I say you only need an extremely tiny amount; I mean that.

 

HAND CHEMISTRY

HYALURONIC GEL:

CHECK HAND CHEMISTRY HERE

Very fresh, absorbs quickly.

I really do not have much else to say, unfortunately.

 

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RETIN-OIL

This is on a category on its own; if you want a multitasker (can be worn on face AND body) that targets wrinkles, fine lines, firmness, cellulite, pigmentation, scars and more…this is it.

It is an oil with 1% retinol.

It is truly gorgeous. Now, does it perform like RX? No, of course not, but it is a fantastic over the counter.

Only thing to be warned: The scent is quite strong.

 

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INTENSE YOUTH COMPLEX HAND CREAM

Not much to comment. Nice texture, but might roll up if too much is applied.

 

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HIF: HAIR IS FABRIC

CHECK HAIR IS FABRIC HERE

Oh my oh my…I hate to be the bearer of bad news…but the fairy tale has to end somewhere.

As much as I love most of DECIEM’s products…I feel HIF is a huge fail.

I tried out 2: Volume support and Colour Support.

How their system works: they have different levels of cleansing coefficients and conditioning coefficients. Some hair needs require more cleansing action while others require more conditioning. Also, some of them are safe to be used right after coloring while others may require you to wait 3-7 days after coloring to use them in order to not wash out your dye.

Let’s start by a brief description of my hair:

I have a *lot* of hair, but texture is fine-medium. It is also wavy and dyed (but in excellent condition, no split ends, minimal dryness), it is oily in the roots and tends to be very limp.

Volume Support: It does give volume and a lot of it. But the price to pay is shine; if you have colored hair (especially vivid hair colors), this will make it look dull, almost like you have several coats of salt spray or a mattifying powder. It smells very pleasant and I can see it being a nice product if you are in a rush, but expect having to use a leave in detangler when using this.

This one was designed to use it 1 week after coloring the hair, which I did use by day 10, but what I did not expect is that it would eat up my hair color so fast 😦

Hence I complained to their customer support (have to give credit here; they have one of the most awesome customer service e-v-e-r ❤ ) and they sent me at NO extra charge the cleansing conditioner they felt was better suited for my hair type (after sending pictures as well): Colour support.

Now, this was an even greater disaster.

I will start with the scent; I have not been able to scrub off the scent from my bathtub. It is too much, too overpowering (reminds me of ‘OUD’ masculine fragrances). But I thought…hey…if it is very good, I am willing to overlook that detail (mind you, I am NOT sensitive to scents).

This was…a MASSIVE fail. Within first use, my hair turned brassy!!!! (and this one was safe to use right after coloring) I mean…I never had that happen before, yet with this…I could see my beautiful red color wash off the drain.

Then the hair was impossible to detangle; I had to use an OIL and a DETANGLER. I never have to do that. I usually have the problem that my hair is too limp and overconditioned. This stripped off everything and left my hair impossible to blow dry, faded color and completely dry and lifeless.

This was just a massive disappointment. Add to that the headache inducing scent and I am truly scared to try any more HIF products.

I will keep loyal to Kevin Murphy (which extends my hair color way past its normal and adds incredible shine plus its environmentally friendly), until perhaps they reformulate this better.

I would not recommend colour support. Volume; if you truly struggle with supremely limp hair, you will probably like it. It is a nice gimmick to have for short trips where you don’t want to pack many bottles, but I don’t think it can replace salon-quality traditional systems.

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