This post features press samples. I was not compensated for writing this post and all thoughts and opinions remain my own.
I have keratosis pilaris on my arms and legs, and it’s a fairly bad case. Unlike some people, mine doesn’t clear up in warm weather or even respond terribly well to most treatments. Since Canadian company Dermaglow went under, taking my beloved 8% glycolic acid body lotion with it, I’ve mainly been making do with physical exfoliation and thick body creams. This doesn’t get rid of the KP, but it helps keep my skin as smooth and soft as is possible with this condition.
Obviously, this gets a lot worse in the winter. I have been genetically cursed not only with KP but with the driest skin in the entire freakin’ universe. If I’m not very vigilant with my body lotions when it gets cold out, my arms and legs are pretty much unfit to be seen, touched, or generally existent.
Today I’m here with a comparison of two mid-range body lotions: Avène Akérat Smoothing Exfoliating Cream and La Roche-Posay Lipikar Baume AP+*. Both of these are French pharmacie brands formulated specifically for sensitive skin. Americans may have a hard time finding them, but my fellow Canadians will be able to pick them up in any Shoppers Drug Mart or Pharmaprix. (Both brands are also available at Boots in the UK!)
Claims & Ingredients
Akérat: “Ultra-rich targeted body care helps restore skin’s comfort level and balance for smoother, softer skin texture.” Contains urea as well as lactic acid and salicylic acid.
Lipikar Baume AP+: “Beyond immediate soothing, LIPIKAR Baume AP+ spaces out flare-ups of severe dryness. Supple and soft, skin regains a durable comfort.” and “Anti-Itching, Lipid-Replenishing, Soothing Balm.” Contains shea butter and niacinamide.
Lipikar Baume AP+ has a thinner texture than Akérat, which feels thicker and more emollient. Akérat also feels significantly stickier, which is all the more noticeable after applying it to the skin. However, neither one is terribly thick at all; they’re definitely lotions rather than body butters or even creams, though the Akérat is moving into cream territory. Neither one feels slippery or greasy. Personally, I think the Lipikar Baume AP+ has a more pleasant texture due to the fact that it doesn’t feel sticky at all and sinks into the skin almost instantaneously.
Akérat: Classic squeeze-tube packaging, which I like. It’s hygienic and easy to get all the product out. I will admit I’m a bit spoiled by La Roche Posay’s easy squeeze packaging, which is thinner and makes squeezing product out a lot easier (especially when it’s running low and more elbow grease is required), but that’s just nitpicking.
Lipikar Baume AP+: The 200mL version is the same squeezy tube packaging as Akérat, but the 400mL one that I have is a bottle with a pump. This is okay, but not ideal. It is hygienic and at first it’s easy to get the product out, but obviously as the product diminishes the effectiveness of the pump does too. Also, because the packaging is both opaque and fairly solid, it’s hard to tell how much product is actually left. Although the Akérat tube is also opaque, because of its flexible material it’s easier to determine how much I’ve used up. I’m nervous to travel with products with unprotected pumps like this, too; I’m much more likely to chuck the Akérat into a travel bag! The pump packaging isn’t enough to dissuade me from repurchasing this product, but it’s also not the most convenient.
For three days, I applied the Akérat to my left arm and leg and the Lipikar Baume AP+ to my right. Overall, I found that the long-term results (and I’m using that term relatively, as this was a three-day experiment) were the same. Short-term, my left side felt slightly more hydrated – but also stickier. The Akérat left the sticky feeling lingering for hours, whereas the Lipikar Baume AP+ sank in right away, leaving my skin feeling hydrated but not laden with product.
Long-term, both sets of arms and legs felt smoother and more hydrated than when I started this little experiment. I will say that in the dead of winter I think either product would be most effective when combined with something very thick, like a body butter, to lock in the moisture – but on their own at this time of year, either one is adequate. Neither performs a miracle in terms of my KP, but they certainly help with my dry skin, which in turn helps to minimize both the appearance and feeling of the KP.
Akérat is billed as an exfoliating cream, while Lipikar Baume AP+ is merely a moisturizing body lotion for very dry skin. I don’t feel that Akérat is a particularly effective exfoliant; if my skin is smoother it’s because it’s more moisturized. Despite this, however, I feel that both products essentially live up to their claims. I’m happy with both, although both do have minor shortcomings.
Price and Conclusion
Akérat: $29.50 CAD for 200mL/6.76 fl oz; $0.15 per mL or $4.36 per fl oz.
Lipikar Baume AP+: $33.00 CAD for 400mL/13.5 fl oz; $0.08 per mL or $2.44 per fl oz.
Clearly, the Lipikar Baume AP+ is better value for the money, at least when it comes to the 400mL size. Both products perform well and I will continue to use them both throughout the (many) cold months to come. Avène and La Roche-Posay are both brands that I enjoy, trust, and will happily and confidently sell to customers with a variety of skin concerns. However, the Lipikar Baume AP+ has two distinct advantages when it comes time to repurchase one or the other: its texture is more pleasing to me, and it is far better value when it comes down to price per unit.
Note: Product marked with an asterisk was sent to me for review purposes, but as always this does not influence my opinion whatsoever. This post is not sponsored.