Beating the Shine with Codage Paris Serum #02 Anti-Brilliance and Imperfections


Those that follow me on Instagram probably have guessed that I do have a love affair with Codage Paris. I use at least one of their products in my stash every single day and I try to where possible incorporate one of their amazing serums daily whether it be in the day time or evening. 

Codage Paris was created by sister and brother duo Amandine and Julien Azencott who have a family heritage of cosmetology and French pharmacy. The line is inspired by French pharmacy skincare where treatments are  more personalised and are targeted at specific issues. The premise behind this is that every person’s skin is different and will have different concerns. The brand’s approach to skincare is solving people’s individual skin issues and prescribing each individual with a bespoke solution. There are 11 serums in the range – each targeting a season or a specific skin concern whether it be dehydrated skin, skin redness or skin spots – there generally is a serum for everyone. Each formulation is designed to do specific things for your skin which is depicted via a ‘code’ (more on that later) and what the serums will do for your skin will depend on your actual concerns. Alternatively, you can create your own special bespoke serum by answering an in-depth questionnaire online. A serum will be created for you according to your results and it will be sent to you a beautiful customised monogrammed bottle (this is something that I will aim for one day as mine got pricey!). 

 To customise your very own Codage Serum...ingenious!  To customise your very own Codage Serum...ingenious!

To customise your very own Codage Serum…ingenious!

One of the stand out products from their range which helps my combination skin is Serum #02 – Anti-Brillance and Imperfections (or also known as Anti-Shine and Imperfections). I tend to use this on days where I feel pretty oily or think I will get quite oily (a hot day where I will be spending some time outside). I also will favour this in the evening when I feel like I am going to have a breakout as it will help purify the skin. 

What Is It:
The Codage Anti-Brillance and Imperfections Serum is a beautifully designed product (both aesthetically and in the formula) that is perfect for those with oily or oily combination complexions. As per the Codage website:

Serum N°02 is especially formulated for the immediate and lasting comfort of oily and blemish-prone skin. All at once detoxifying, mattifying and sebum-regulating, this skincare brightens the complexion, tightens the pores and leaves the skin soft to the touch. The powerful blend of antibacterial, soothing and repairing active ingredients clears up imperfections and evens out skin tone. 

 Some of my Codage Paris collection...  Some of my Codage Paris collection...

Some of my Codage Paris collection…

What Does it Do:
This is a serum that aims to help those with oily/oily combination or blemish prone skin to maintain a balance. As mentioned in the product description the product aims to mattify, regulate sebum, detoxify and purify the skin and even out the skin tone. 

All Codage products have a specific ‘code’ (thus where the name Codage comes from). Some people find their codes to confusing and almost off putting (as they seem quite ‘science like’) but I personally think the code is part of the brand image.  It contributes to the brand’s marketing and aesthetic of being French pharmacy inspired, clinical and personalised for your concerns. To give you an example, the code for Serum #2 is the following:

 Image Source:  Image Source:

Image Source:

As you can see each code is to treat a specific concern within each skin problem. Ma3 is mattiying (M standing for mattifying and the number 3 meaning that it is maximum mattifying), Ac3 is for anti-imperfections, Re3 is for skin repair and De3 is for Detoxifying. You would agree that with oily, combination and acne/blemish prone skin that these conerns are valid and is something that we look to treat. Here is the rest of the code for Serum #2 decoded and what the serum promises to do for your skin (be warned its a lot):

Screen Shot 2016-05-18 at 3.55.27 pm.pngScreen Shot 2016-05-18 at 3.55.27 pm.png  Image Source:  Image Source:

Image Source:

As per the Codage Paris website, this serum contains 12 active ingredients and 5 patent ingedients. What these are I am not sure as they are not clearly detailed on the website. However here is the full list of ingredients: 

Aqua (water), butylene glycol, Bambusa arundinacea (bamboo) stem powder, sorbitol,  Albizia julibrissin bark extract, glycerin, alcohol, candida bombicola/glucose/methyl rapeseedate ferment, Centella asiatica extract, Enantia chlorantha (muamba jaune) bark extract, Onopordum acanthium (cotton thistle) flower/leaf/sterm extract, hydrolyzed hyaluronic acid, magnesium aspartate, Laminaria saccharina (sugar kelp) extract, copper gluconate, Faex (yeast) extract, Plankton extract, zinc gluconate,  darutoside, arginine ferulate, lauroyl lysine, nordihydroguaiaretic acid, hydroxyethyl acrylate/sodium acryloyldimethyl taurate copolymer, oleanolic acid, dicaprylyl carbonate, caprylyl methicone, PEG-60 almond glycerides, cyclopentasiloxane, dimethicone crosspolymer, carbomer, sorbitan isostearate, polysorbate 60, dimethicone/vinyl dimethicone crosspolymer, methylpropanediol, caprylyl glycol, dimethiconol, caprylhydroxamic acid, phenoxyethanol, sodium metabisulfite, BHT, disodium EDTA, sodium benzoate, potassium sorbate, citric acid, sclerotium gum, parfum (fragrance).

In all formulations, Codage aims to use natural actives and are certified free from parabens, phtlaates and essential oils. They are also free from animal testing. 

My Thoughts:
I actually really enjoy using this serum and it is probably one of my favourites out of the three that I currently own. The premise behind the Codage brand might be a little more complicated than your standard skincare range (ie. the codes for what the serum does and what it actually does) but to simplify this particular product – it is a great targeted serum for those with oily, combination or acne prone skin and hits most of the concerns on the head. The beauty of all Codage serums are that they are targeted treatments and whatever your skin concern might be, there usually is a treatment for that. I usually use this serum when I need to and not on a daily basis but I would say that out of the three serums this and Summer Time are the ones I tend to reach for the most as both do have some mattifying and oil control capabilities. 

When I do use this serum in the morning, I find that in conjunction with my Hourglass Mineral Veil primer, it controls my sebum production in my T-Zone really well. I don’t really get oily when I do use the two together, and when I do it, usually it is in the evening when I am about to take off all the make-up anyway. I really like to use this on a hot day or on a day where I know I will be spending lots of time outside and have the potential to get all hot and sticky. I love the fact that the serum isn’t thick or greasy feeling. Once I apply it on the skin, it sinks in straight away and leaves a nice smooth satin finish on the skin. My skin also looks and feels super smooth and looks well prepped to apply any make-up on for the day. Make-up just sits really nicely over this and it doesn’t ball or react with any of my foundations. It truly creates the perfect canvas for make-up application and I find that throughout the day the oil control is at bay. On those hot and humid days, I find that my foundation just stays on a lot better and it has a better staying power. I am of Asian heritage, so generally my pore size is quite small anyway and by way of reducing the size of my pores, I am unfortunately unable to comment. I also love how this serum does not dry me out at all in my cheeks (which are generally on the dry side). I find that this serum when used in the daytime will balance my skin out and overall improve my skin’s texture and appearance. 

 The beautiful packaging of the Codage Paris Serum #2 Anti Brilliance and Imperfctions  The beautiful packaging of the Codage Paris Serum #2 Anti Brilliance and Imperfctions

The beautiful packaging of the Codage Paris Serum #2 Anti Brilliance and Imperfctions

If I use this serum in the evening, it is normally when I feel like I am getting an annoying bump underneath the skin or if I start to get some hormonal pimples. Using this with a targeted spot treatment (if I have a spot), normally keeps a breakout at bay or if I have a spot, it normally clears up quite quickly. I guess this is where the antibacterial claims, the detoxification and the skin repair actions come in to play for this treatment. Redness in the area is also diminished and any spots or bumps in the area look a lot less angry. 

I love the packaging of these serums. They use a beautiful frosted glass jar with a pipette on top with a minimalistic design. These look absolutely lovely against a vanity or on a shelf. The serum viscosity is not too thick for the pipettes at all and the pipette glass jar add to the whole French pharmacy/apothecary aesthetic of the brand. There is a slight fragrance to this serum, its very light, soft and almost powdery in smell. It is not at all offensive or strong for those who have a sensitive nose. 

Repurchase YAY or NAY:
Overall, I love the Codage Paris Serum #2 Anti-Brilliance and Imperfections and I couldn’t rave about it or any of the Codage products I own any more. I love the customised approach that Codage Paris take with their skincare and how each product has its own code to decipher. It is truly personalised and can get even more personalised when you can make your own bespoke serum. I will definitely be repurchasing this once I have ran out as I haven’t found any other serum or skincare item that keeps the oil at bay and works so well with my make-up like this one.  

How Do I Get This:
Serum #2 isn’t the cheapest serum out there to balance out an oily complexion, but it is probably the one that I have found works the best for me. A 30ml bottle from Mecca retails for AUD $122 or EURO€83.00 including taxes (directly from the Codage website). The Codage website also has the option of purchasing a smaller 10ml size at EURO€34.00 or alternatively you can either try one of the pre-made prescriptions on the website which contain a few of their products in a deluxe sample size or request to try some samples, all you need to do is pay for the postage. 

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