Model Skincare Routine: Anti-Blemish Discoveries

Some new anti-blemish discoveries for you this week. I say ‘new’, but I’ve actually been testing out all of these products for well over a month. I would rather give you thorough, well-informed recommendations that I have tested out myself than just present you with a regurgitated press release! So sorry about that – it may not always be ‘breaking news’ here on A Model Recommends, but you can be sure that I’ve given everything a proper going over for you!

First on the agenda; REN’s Clearcalm 3 range. I have already given the mask a pretty thorough review here, but the rest of the range might be unfamiliar to you. There’s an excellent clay cleanser which feels a little like Liz Earle’s Cleanse and Polish in texture, quite thick and  gives a deep, satisfying cleanse. I remove it with a muslin cloth for added cleansing power, but it rinses off just fine with water. There’s also a day fluid moisturiser, nice and light and instantly mattifying, and an overnight serum. If you have ever felt like covering your whole face with a spot treatment, but couldn’t do it for fear of getting third degree burns and skin like crackling, these moisturisers are perfect. Just the right amount of gentle treatment so that skin doesn’t dry out or feel uncomfortable. There’s a very slight ‘medicinal’ smell to all of the Clearcalm 3 products, but it absolutely doesn’t bother me one bit – it just gives me confidence that they’re working!

Two topical spot treatments; Burt’s Bees Targeted Spot Treatment from the new Anti-Blemish range is a liquid treatment that blasts spots the natural way. It feels quite potent when you apply it and you only need a very tiny drop, so the bottle would last years. If you get spots infrequently and want a quick remedy to keep in the medicine cupboard then this one fits the bill very nicely. Dr Nick Lowe’s Spot Gel is very different – it’s a gel, and it’s in a tube. It doesn’t feel so strong on application (that eyewatering burn that you can get!) but boy is it good! It doesn’t dry the surrounding skin and it really does seem to clear spots up overnight. This has become a permanent addition to my ‘bedside table’ products!

Have a look at the video to hear me repeat exactly what I’ve told you above (I don’t know why I end up writing things and filming them!) and to see me holding up the products. It’s a bit like QVC, but filmed in a totally unprofessional way and without some manic woman speaking three thousand words in a minute.

(REN Clearcalm 3: Cleanser £18, Night Serum £20, Day Fluid £24, Mask £28. Burt’s Bees Anti-Blemish Spot Treatment, £9.99 from Boots. Dr Nick Lowe Spot Gel, £8.99 from Boots.)

© 2018 A Model Recommends®: all opinions are my own and any sponsored or paid posts will always be clearly marked as an AD in the title. I accept press samples and receive product and services to review as part of my job. *Outbound links are affiliate links, which means that I receive a very small percentage of any sale made. This does not affect my content in any way and does not cost you anything, but you are most welcome to Google the products on a new page if you prefer. Please see here for full "about" section and disclaimer. A Model Recommends and Ruth Crilly are registered trademarks.



  1. Margot
    November 23, 2010 / 4:11 pm

    Hi Ruth!
    I’ve been looking for a good anti-blemish/spot treatment ever since my all time favorite clinique’s anti-blemish solutions night treatment gel has been discontinued.
    Too bad many of the products you review on your website are not available for purchase here in Belgium.
    Can’t wait for your next post! x

  2. Cassie
    November 23, 2010 / 4:58 pm

    Ooh, I really need to get the Dr Nick gel a whirl. Have you tried Clinique’s antiblemish range? I’m using their moisturiser which contains salicylic acid and it’s quite effective, except when I popped by the Elizabeth Arden counter and got my skin analysed by a machine wand thing, my moisture and pore size got a C grade :'( Naturally she started pushing me to buy the Intervene system which I tried before and wasn’t too impressed with.

    I don’t suppose you know how accurate those machines are? It measured moisture levels, pigmentation, skin texture/elasticity and pore size.

    Hope your eyelashes are better, btw! xxx

    • November 23, 2010 / 11:06 pm

      Hmm, no idea actually but I do know that they use that dehydrated line as a classic sales ploy! Everyones skin is dehydrated unless you’ve just splattered on a load of product!! X

  3. Jen
    November 23, 2010 / 9:06 pm

    Great review as always! I’ve been wanting to ditch the harsh spot treatments in favour of something more natural for ages but didn’t think there was anything out there that would be suitable for my nightmare skin, i’ll definitely be trying out the Ren Clearcalm products now, thank you!

  4. Lucy
    November 24, 2010 / 12:11 am

    Brillant video – definitely going to look into Ren as my skin also has a freak out once a month, it throws me every time even though I should be used to it by now!

    About the burts bees smell I think you meant Anbesol – wouldn’t recommend Olbas Oil for the gums hahaha!

    Thanks for a great blog and videos!x

  5. Alice
    December 1, 2010 / 11:06 pm

    Hi Ruth

    Firstly, I absolutely LOVE your blog (having just discovered it yesterday I have read through almost all your posts)!

    I just wanted to ask whether you have heard of or tried any treatments for facial scarring – particularly acne scarring. I’ve got pretty good skin now but still have marks from spots about 3/4 years ago, and nothing seems to have worked!


    • December 2, 2010 / 4:11 pm

      I think facial/acne scarring is something that you should see a dermatologist about; rather than wasting money on lots of treatments that may or may not be effective, get some professional advice. I think it would be worth it in the long-run, even if the intial cost is steeper! I’ll do some research too for you, I have been asked this a few times so I’m interested to know! Also, pop over to and see what he has to say, he’s an acne expert! X

  6. Name
    January 31, 2011 / 8:58 pm

    If i have normal skin, can i use them in summer?…. Will they dry my skin out?

  7. Name
    February 1, 2011 / 2:41 pm

    the REN ones… thanks alot !

    • February 1, 2011 / 9:21 pm

      No, they don’t dry my skin out at all. Obviously they feel ‘tighter’ than a moisturising product for dry skin, but they don’t leave skin flaky or uncomfortable. I used the cleanser last night and night before, I love it!

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