Skin Functional – A Full Brand Review

Skin Functional, an affordable South African skincare brand that has come into my life, stolen my heart, and enriched my skin, has taken the local skin care industry by storm. And for good reason. I introduced you to them at the end of 2020 with their very first daily moisturiser release, and I was so impressed by the performance and results of it, that I just had to know more about them and put some of their other products to the test. They are known for their fabulous range of serums, jam-packed full of the best skincare ingredients you can find, with simple yet classic packaging; ensuring that everyone can have the skincare regimen they deserve, without mortgaging anything you own. But would these products stand up against some of my very expensive skincare?  I swapped my personal skin care products and used only the Skin Functional ones for over a month, and let me say, my mind is blown and my skin, well it looks absolutely fabulous. 

The fact that this is a “local is lekker” brand, made in South Africa, is just the cherry on top, it makes it so easy to love, but it’s the quality and performance of these serums that deliver. Every product is cruelty-free, meaning no testing on animals (I love that), and they contain no parabens (more brownie points). The website is so easy to navigate and makes mapping out your skincare a breeze. You can shop by product, skin concern, age, skin type, and even by active ingredient. 

Shipping is another winner. Skin Functional has a turnaround time that is out of this world. Not only do they get your order to you in record time, but they keep you updated every step of the way via email as to where your order is at all times. When it arrives, it’s equally fabulous. A beautifully packaged box of skincare treats wrapped in black ribbons, with personalised notes and a Skintelligence pamphlet highlighting all of the products in your order with a guideline of how and when to use them, and in what order. The personalised touch and attention to detail stand out, and you can tell that so much care gets put into every order that is shipped. 

The Skin Functional Packaging is classic and understated, but packs a punch on the inside, and is so unique. It tells you what the product does for your skin, using a * rating, and also tells you what skin types will most benefit from it. I also appreciate them listing a batch code and expiry date on every product. So many skincare brands should take note of this. Another thing I need to point out is that many of their serums come in baby trial sizes of 5ML’s so that you can try it, get results from it, and decide whether to buy the full size of it. For this, Skin Functional scores huge points in our review book for this extra nod and thoughtfulness for their consumers.

Onto the products themselves. As I said before, Skin Functional are known for their serums, and after using them and loving them, I can see why. The ingredients are exceptional and I personally guarantee you will see results within a week. For me to say that is huge. I usually wait to see results from a skincare product over the course of 4-6 weeks, but with these serums, it took a week, and for one particular product, a day. I must mention that nothing sells a skincare product and its power more to me than the list of ingredients; the fewer ingredients, the better, and in Skin Functional’s case, they have nailed this aspect of skincare – they have kept their ingredients list down to the nitty-gritty, the stuff we know works.

 Let’s take a more in-depth look at each product I tested and how it performed. 

Exfoliating Glow Tonic

Skin Functional describes this as a gentle, leave on, exfoliating Glycolic Tonic that removes dead skin cells and assists in tightening skin, leaving you with revitalised, plump skin with a healthy glow. 

My Thoughts: This is a beautiful addition to any skincare routine. Glycolic Acid is known to penetrate deep into the surface of your skin, unclog pores, and even diminish them. Glycolic Acid is an AHA, meaning Alpha Hydroxy Acid, making it water-soluble and able to target sun damage and even wrinkles.  I use this on a cotton pad, after cleansing, and I apply it all over my face, neck, and decolletage. I wait a few minutes for it to dry and then carry on with the rest of my routine. I use this at night too when I feel I need it. It’s also notable that Glycolic Acid is number 3 on the ingredients list, making it really high up, and potent. 

Price – R250 100ML

2% BHA Texture And Blemish Tonic 

Skin Functional describes this as a daily tonic that smoothes skin texture and tone for a natural glow. Salicylic Acid exfoliates and provides quicker cell renewal to minimise the appearance of blemishes, large pores, and fine lines.

My Thoughts: This is an incredible BHA product, and it works immediately. A BHA is a Beta Hydroxy Acid. These specific acids have the ability to get very deep into the pores to remove dead skin cells and excess sebum, as well as helping rescue skin prone to bumps and blemishes. I used this on alternate mornings to the Exfoliating Glow Tonic, and in the same way; on a cotton pad, after cleansing, and I apply it all over my face, neck, and decolletage. I wait a few minutes for it to dry and then carry on with the rest of my routine. I found this specific BHA formula to be extremely calming and gentle and love using it. 

Price – R250 100ML

Anti-Oxidant Complexion Firmer 

Skin Functional describes this as a potent form of Vitamin C (L-Ascorbic Acid), which provides powerful skin brightening, anti-oxidant, and collagen production benefits.

My Thoughts: WOW. This product is an absolute game-changer and my favourite product from this entire brand. I will repurchase this over and over again, and here’s why. This serum has an ingredient list of four, and I am so here for it. I am hooked. This gem contains two skincare powerhouses – 10% L-Ascorbic Acid and 3% Ferulic Acid. Vitamin C is an ingredient that everyone should be using daily. It helps to brighten skin, diminish scars and blemishes, evens out skin tone, hydrates, and protects the skin from pollutants. It also stimulates collagen. Ferulic Acid is the standout ingredient in this for me. This antioxidant works to boost the effects of other antioxidants, it basically helps every serum ingredient you are using to work at its best performance. It also helps to protect overall skin integrity by reducing the development of fine lines and wrinkles. I use this every morning by applying 3 drops to my skin. 

Price – R260 30ML / R60 5ML

Daily Moisturiser

Skin Functional added its very first daily moisturiser to its serum-based range and describe it as a daily skincare staple for hydrated, healthier skin. 

My Thoughts: Not only does it perform beautifully, but the results, much like their serums, are literally visible after a single-use. My skin feels hydrated and plump for hours after use. It’s not greasy or oily and is fabulous under makeup. The Daily Moisturiser is made with 5% Black Ginseng + ATP Complex a powerful combination, with anti-oxidant and hydration properties. Black Ginseng is collagen boosting and assists the natural growth of cells to rebuild the skin. 

Price – R290 

Dark Circles, Puffiness & Lines 

Skin Functional describes this as an intensive eye serum that targets dark circles and puffiness while addressing lines around the eye area like crow’s feet. 

My Thoughts: This was a very interesting serum to use around my eye area, and I love it. I’m used to creamy under-eye serums and not a watery one, which took a bit of adjusting. Caffeine, when applied topically, constricts blood vessels, reduces inflammation and puffiness. It also tightens, brightens, and reduces wrinkles. I apply a drop or two to my fingertips and pat gently into the contours of my eye area and only use this at night so that it doesn’t mix with my Vitamin C as they cancel each other out.

Price – R385 30ML / R90 5ML

Vitamin A AKA Retinol 0.5%

Skin Functional describes this as a skin-perfecting Retinol serum that improves skin’s surface as it treats signs of sun damage, rough texture, wrinkles, and surface imperfections. 

My Thoughts: The GOLD standard of any skincare routine has to include Retinol. I have used Retinol for over 3 years already, and there’s a reason why you should too. Retinol is a miracle skincare ingredient and is derived from Vitamin A. It prevents wrinkles and smoothes out existing fine lines and wrinkles. It’s a powerful anti-aging ingredient and works wonders on acne and dark spots, as well as pigmentation and Melasma. It even prevents breakouts and promotes cell turnover for a more even complexion. I use two to three drops on my skin every night. If you’re new to Retinol, start very slowly as this is a potent ingredient. You want to use it two or three nights a week for three weeks, working your way to every second night for two weeks so that you gradually work up to nightly use. I also find that I use my Retinol every night in Summer and alternate nights in Winter, so find what works best for you and your skin. 

Price – R270 30ML / R65 5ML

Exfoliating Facial 2 

Skin Functional describes this as a 10 minute exfoliating facial, using an Amino Hydroxy Complex blend, to deliver high strength, on the go treatment, with no sting or burn. A treatment that combats visible dark marks and blemishes while improving skin texture and radiance. 

My Thoughts: This facial is fabulous and it delivers more than what I expected. This contains a trio of AHA’s and releases slowly. Packed with Glycolic, Lactic, and Amino Acids, this is an investment for your skin. I use this once a week as directed, at night. After cleansing, you apply five to seven drops to a dry face and leave it on for just 5 minutes. Then rinse with lukewarm water. Once your skin builds up a good tolerance for this facial, you can easily leave it on for ten minutes before rinsing. 

Price – R290 30ML

It’s like they say, “Instagram and Snapchat filters are great, but great skin is better”. With this brand, you get that. With Skin Functional you get great, and healthy-looking skin, and everybody deserves to look and feel their best, because after all when you look your best, you give your best, you are your best. 

All prices are correct at the time of publishing.

The Skin Functional Range is suitable for all skin types and there is something for everyone for glowing and healthy skin. It is available to purchase from Free Nationwide Shipping for orders over R850.

DISCLAIMER: These products were gifted to me. All opinions expressed in my posts and videos are my own. My reviews of places, products, and services are not endorsed by the companies or individuals who provide them, and I have full editorial control over my content.

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