It’s time to get Scrub’d up! Order now. 

by Dr. Rashmira Balasuriya 


As you probably know by now, I am utterly and completely obsessed with skincare. I am NOT a dermatologist, but have done so much background research on the latest products and common holy grail items, that I like to think of myself as a skincare addict. Skincare is most definitely not cheap, but I would much rather spend my money on skincare than make up.

I know a few people like the skincare blog posts and demand it to be more frequent – however, the problem with skincare is that it requires extensive testing before I formulate an opinion on the product. Due to this, it takes a couple of months for me to completely test the product to see how I truly feel about it.

As always, I still have combination skin (with a really oily T-zone). The odd pimples come and go, but when they do come, they form an eruption on my forehead. My main problem with the pimples are the scars they sometimes leave behind (do not pop your pimple or the scar will be ridiculously hard to get rid off)! Hyperpigmentation is still one of my main concerns, but it has slowly atarted to improve.

Listed below are reviews of 5 products that I have tested over the last few months (2 of which were from my wishlist from the last post). Take a read and let me know what you think of the products if you have tried them before.

  • img_0573Body Shop Japanese Matcha Tea Pollution Clearing Mask – I am obsessed with the body shop himalayan charcoal purifying mask, so I was absolutely elated to be gifted this anti-pollution mask! The green mask has a creamy texture with occasional exfoliation beads and it applies very evenly into a thin layer (not much product is needed). It has a light smell of matcha, but is not over-powering. The first few tries however, were a bit disappointing as I didn’t feel like it made much of a difference to my skin. When I accidentally left the facemask on for 20 minutes (instructions say 10 minutes), I felt my skin become less congested and more soft. Definitely do not try this for all facemasks, but for this one, you might want to. The mask doesn’t dry into a hard brick like substance, but more into a moist paste. It is easily removed by gentle washing with cold water – much less messier than the charcoal mask.

The Charcoal mask from body shop is still my favourite though for my combination skin as you can truly feel it suck out the gunk from your pores – leaving your skin feeling squeaky clean, but not dry. Sorry the Sri Lanka body shop website does not have this product online (even though it is available in store), so I’ve linked it to the UK store – please note that it is MUCH cheaper in the UK than in Sri Lanka.

Rating 7/10 (available in Sri Lanka at the body shop stores, but with a nice fat tax unfortunately).

  • Soap & Glory Vitamin C Facewash – img_0572This product was on my wish list from the lastskin care post and I finally got my hands on it a month later! I have been actively searching for a cheap, but effective cleanser that I could use everyday in the morning and occasionally in the night as well. This cleanser was exactly what I needed. A pea size drop of this is all you need! This bluey-green gel has microbeads for mild exfoliation purposes and foams up with water. The strong citrus smell really wakes you up, and even though it has the power to block out your sense of smell, it is exactly what I need to wake my grumpy self up in the morning! This is a big bottle that is very reasonably priced and will last you a long time. I have used it for more than 3 months now, and I’ve only used less than 1/4 of the bottle.

Soap & Glory is an affordable skin care line which I had read many positive reviews about and cannot wait to try out more of their skin care products. This cleanser is an absolute steal at only £8!

*Tip – When using a cleanser, most of us do not keep the cleanser on for more than a few seconds (trust me or time yourself)! This doesn’t really give the product enough time to actively work on your skin and make a change. One of the best beauty tips I read was to keep the cleanser on for atleast 60 seconds – gently lather it on and keep moving your fingers around your face to ensure your entire face gets atleast 3 rounds of lathering. It really has made a difference to my skin and I highly recommend you try it.

Rating 8/10 – It is not easily available in Sri Lanka (I got it when my husband travelled to the UK), but many instagram beauty stores do bring this product down. 

  • img_0560Clinique Moisture Surge™ Hydrating Supercharged Concentrate – I got this product as a part of a clinique gift set so it is in travel size – the perfect size to test out any product! It is a lightweight water gel like moisturizer which I used as part of my night skincare routine (before my face oil). You only need a pea-sized drop (it really is a supercharge concentrate!) and it immediately soaks right into the skin. On waking, your skin feels super refreshed, hydrated and plump, with no greasy feeling the next day! This small tube lasted approximately 2 weeks and I will definitely consider this a repurchase if I ever need a light moisturiser (it’s light enough to wear in the day time without sweating like mad in this tropical heat). It will probably benefit dry skin much more than it benefited my combination skin.

I am currently using Clinique Moisture Surge 72-hour replenishing hydrator (came in the same gift set) and this has a similar effect to the supercharge concentrate, but has a more creamy silky smooth texture. Clinique is a well-known old school brand that sells on the high street (UK) and is decently priced (more expensive than The Ordinary and Soap & Glory products). It is not freely found in Sri Lanka, but many instagram beauty stores may be able to  bring the product down for you.

Rating 8/10 – A great day time hydrating moisturizer, but not freely available in Sri Lanka. 

  • The Ordinary Caffeine 5% + EGCG img_0571The Ordinary is a brand that amazes me. They are exceptionally cheap, but deliver great quality products that actually do work!

I’ve never had heavily dark circles, but I do get the occasional puffy under eyes and eye bags especially when I’ve been studying till all odd hours of the night and during my internship. This product has kept my eyes relatively puff-free despite studying till 5 am everyday for my postgraduate exams. I use this serum twice a day after applying my toner. It is a slightly thick colourless serum with no significant fragrance. I apply one drop from the pipette (intelligently attached to the lid of the bottle) and using my ring fingers, gently tap (TAP do not rub) the product into the under-eye contour. It generally only takes a couple of minutes to get absorbed into the skin.

The Drunk Elephant C-tango multivitamin eye cream would only very slightly outweigh this product in terms of efficacy, but you would have to pay 10 times the price (I got it in a sample – thank god for samples!). This brand is a relatively new kid on the skincare block, but it is definitely causing a few earthquakes and shattering many barriers. Many instagram beauty stores bring down the ordinary products to Sri Lanka, but it can also be ordered via

Rating 7/10 – The only reason this gets a 7 is because I feel someone who suffers from very dark under-eye circles should test this out in terms of improvement of the colour discolouration. 

  • img_0574The Ordinary’s 100% Organic Cold-pressed Rosehip Seed Oil – Definitely saved the best for last! This has hands down become one of my holy grail products (the only other one is the tatcha rice enzyme cleanser!). I initially saw this product raved about by the talented hudabeauty on their website and decided to give it a try.

I was very apprehensive about applying an oil onto my face, especially as my combination skin can have the odd break out or two (I still do not apply it to my face if I have any break outs). I only use 3-4 drops of this oil in my nightime skincare routine as the last step. It has a pleasant smell that is not overpowering! It has done wonders for my hyperpigmentation over my chin and has also slowly erased the few acne scars/sun spots that I had. The oil takes a couple of weeks to show a change if any, but keep at it! It is amazing!

As mentioned earlier, a number of beauty instagram shops online bring the ordinary products down to Sri Lanka for a cheap price. Give it a try! It is ah-mazing (for the 3rd time!) and has even soothed my husband’s uncontrollable eczema.

Rating 10/10 – holy grail status achieved!

I hopes this little post has helped you when deciding on which product to spend your hard earned money on. Remember that everybody has different skin and a product that works on my skin may not necessarily work on yours! Do you research and definitely some testing (buy the travel sized products, saves you some money). Here’s my current wish list of skincare products, do send me a message of other products you would like me to try!

My ever-growing wish list (what I hope to get in the future)!

Sunday Riley Good genes (lactic acid, not the glycolic one)

Summer Fridays Jet lag Mask (not heard positive reviews about their other 2 products)

Tatcha the deep cleanse (dream product)

Tatcha the essence (dream product)

Drunk elephant C-tango (dream product)

Drunk elephant sakuri baby facial

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Hi there!

Hi there! Dr. Rashmira Balasuriya is a medical doctor in Sri Lanka, currently training in Family Medicine. Navigating the healthcare system in Sri Lanka is no easy task and this website was created to help guide other foreign medical graduates and junior doctors. This website also helps demystify life as a doctor in Sri Lanka and also combats medical misinformation circulating amongst the general public!