A new category of treatment lotions have become an essential part of the skincare routine.

Do not confuse these watery but viscous lotions with toners. The latter ensures that skin is thoroughly cleansed; but the alcohol-based ones also tend to leave skin tight and dry.

On the other hand, skin-softening lotions are meant to keep the skin moist and plump, and prepare it to better absorb other skincare products such as serums and creams.

Many have additional skincare functions to boost the efficacy of the potent serums applied afterwards. Others also provide gentle exfoliation.

These moisturising lotions are meant to be used right after cleansing (or if you like, right after cleansing and toning), and before a serum is applied.

Soak a cotton pad with the lotion and swipe onto your skin, or pour the lotion onto your fingertips and pat it into your skin.

Here are some of the latest to hit the shelves.

#1 Lancome Blanc Expert Melanolyser Brightness Diffusing Essence In LotionLancome 6 Skin softeners lotions toners second step of skincare routine.jpg 

$110, from Lancome counters

Mint, rose and gentiana flower help prevent skin inflammation; while yeast extract, vitamin CG (a form of vitamin C) and ellagic acid reduce the appearance of dark spots.

 

 

 

#2 RMK Skintuner Smoother (S) Light RMK 6 Skin softeners lotions toners second step of skincare routine.jpg
$60, from RMK counters

Citrus peel and bilberry extracts boost skin regeneration, strengthen the skin barrier, minimise the appearance of pores, and brighten and even out skin tone.

Rose fruit extract is added to restore skin elasticity, while apricot and hibiscus extracts soften and moisturise.

Available in two versions – one for normal to combination skin, and the other for normal to dehydrated skin.

#3 Chanel Sublimage La Lotion Supreme Ultimate Skin RegenerationChanel sublimage 6 Skin softeners lotions toners second step of skincare routine.jpg
$176, available at Chanel counters from April 17

Vanilla orchid extract, active ingredients and a magnetic water complex are supposed to keep skin hydrated for longer.

 

 

 

 

#4 Yves Saint Laurent Beaute Forever Youth Liberator Essence-In-LotionYSL youth liberator 6 Skin softeners lotions toners second step of skincare routine.jpg
$119, from YSL Beaute counters

A cream-in-droplet technology that is made to moisturise with a lightweight texture, and glycans (complex sugars in human tissues) to improve skin texture.

 

 

 

#5 Sisleya Essential Skin Care LotionSisleya 6 Skin softeners lotions toners second step of skincare routine.jpg
$200, from Sisley counters

Marshmallow, phytosqualane and plant glycerine moisturise and protect. The lotion also contains anti-ageing ginkgo biloba, brown algae extract and white willow extract.

 

 

 

 

#6 Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins Mega-Mushroom Skin Relief Soothing Treatment LotionOrigins Dr Weil 6 Skin softeners lotions toners second step of skincare routine.jpg
$62, from Origins counters

This contains sea buckthorn berry, an antioxidant; and chaga mushroom, cordyceps and reishi mushroom to rejuvenate skin. Turmeric, ginger and holy basil soothe and reduce inflammation.

 

 

 

This article was first run in The Straits Times newspaper on April 3, 2015.

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