The Ordinary Caffeine Solution, Niacinamide and Hyaluronic Acid review

It’s no secret that I am an absolute skincare whore, and its also no secret that as of recent I have been suffering with horrendous adult acne. And honestly not just a few whiteheads (blackheads are already permanent additions to my face so I don’t even mention them), I mean proper cystic bumps that crawl right under the skin. The kind of spots that are sensitive to the touch, swollen, and do not disappear from your face without an epic showdown of a fight. Generally, I’d be able to tackle this type of breakout with my essential acne skincare products that I always reach for. Annoyingly, my usual products were helping with the inflammation but they were not getting rid of the acne. So, as a last resort (of course retail therapy is a last resort!) I decided to do a miniature Deciem haul / binge to improve my skin.

When approaching a Deciem online shop, I would recommend initial research. I always feel like I need a science degree to understand what the products are, how they work and how to integrate them into my skincare routine. After my research I had read online that The Ordinary’s Salicylic Acid formulation targets acne, congestion and blackheads – perfect for my problematic skin. However, it is currently sold out online so I opted for Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%. I’ve been using it daily for around a week and a half, here are my initial thoughts:

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, £5 for 30ml 

Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) helps to reduce the appearance of blemishes and congestion, it is also proven to brighten the complexion. The Zinc helps reduce the production of sebum, which in turn can stop new spots from forming. It is important to note that this product is not recommended to be used in conjunction with Vitamin C, as it may interact with the integrity of the Vitamin C.

As mentioned I have been using this both AM and PM, after double-cleansing and before moisturisation. The texture is quite drying, you will need to use a hydrating moisturiser afterwards – ensure that it is non-comedogenic so it does not clog your pores. I believe the niacinamide has helped to clear and brighten my complexion, however, it is rather early to be able to say with accuracy. However, I do believe this is a beneficial product (in conjunction with other acne treatments) for acne sufferers. The fact it is only £5, like most of The Ordinary’s range – is an added bonus.

Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5, £5.90 for 30ml

This is my second time purchasing this product as I simply love it. Although it isn’t necessarily advised for acne prone skin I find because its main objective is to hydrate the skin, it is necessary for me. The Acids and AHA’s for acne can be drying to the skin when trying to combat spots, I use Hyaluronic Acid in the evenings to restore plumpness and hydration. This formulation is also enhanced with Vitamin B5 which also aids in enhancing surface hydration.

Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG, £5.80 for 30ml

The caffeine solution aims to reduce the appearance of eye contour pigmentation and puffiness of the under eye. So although this product is not aimed at acne prone skin, I got it because it confronts another long term skincare issue I have – dark circles. The caffeine solution is enhanced with Epigallocatechin Gallatyl Glucoside (EGCG) from green tea leaves. I have been using this at night time, the only issue I have encountered is that because its applied to the under eye area and my eyes are very watery the fumes ended up stinging my eyes. But it is worth stating that I do have particularly sensitive eyes. I have since been careful to apply underneath the lashes, without being too close to my eye ball. My under eye area does appear brighter and less tired looking in the mornings. Additionally, you only need one drop per eye so I can see this product lasting me an entire year – making it super cost effective.

In conclusion I am really happy with my purchases – especially my new found favourite Niacinamide. I’d recommend it for all acne sufferers, and at £5 it is an absolute bargain.

Happy Shopping!


    • michelleprestige
      September 22, 2019 / 9:54 am

      I’m loving the niacinamide! Would highly recommend it x

  1. September 29, 2019 / 10:13 am

    I bought the Niacinamide liquid (can it be considered a serum?) last year because of the same problem! However, I found it too drying for me (maybe because of Zinc?) so I decided to take care of acne with Tea Tree and Centella Asiatica instead! I have the Caffeine liquid too but still didn’t give it a proper chance! I will definitely do after reading your review 😁

    • michelleprestige
      September 29, 2019 / 2:12 pm

      Yes I also found the niacinamide drying on my skin, I decided to just use it in the evenings instead of am and pm. Did you use a moisturiser on top?

      I also use tea tree and I’m loving that! I use the facial wash from the body shop.

      The caffeine solution, I’ve heard, gets mixed reviews. Seems to work for some people and not others! Hope it works for you xx

  2. May 27, 2020 / 4:46 pm

    This is one of my favorite serum. Can’t go without it :p

    • michelleprestige
      May 27, 2020 / 4:53 pm

      It is really good!

  3. Marj
    June 30, 2020 / 9:02 pm

    hi what is the proper order to put on these products? i exactly just bought same three products you mentioned above. i hope u can help me 🙂 thanks!

    • michelleprestige
      July 1, 2020 / 3:35 pm

      Hi Marj! I use the niacinamide in the same way a serum would be used, so I cleanse tone and use it and then moisturise once it’s dry. The caffeine solution I rub underneath my eyes like any eye cream (probably better to do this once you’ve moisturised). I wouldn’t advise using the Hyaluronic acid with the Niacinimide as they can be astringent, I alternate between the two. This way you will see which one your skin reacts well too. I hope this helps xxx

  4. Zahra
    July 16, 2020 / 7:02 am

    can i mix Niacinamide with Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG?

    • michelleprestige
      July 16, 2020 / 12:21 pm

      Hi! Thanks for the question, I’m not really qualified to say. I use both but niacinamide on my face and the caffeine solution under my eyes, so technically they don’t mix. Please check with Deciem to be on the safe side x

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