We sit down with founder, Pauline Ng, to take a closer look at how customisation runs through the heart of Porcelain, growing from aspirations to development.
is no stranger to our practice. From the beginning of time, we believed that understanding
one’s skin is not limited to the individual as its journey also includes the
changes from our day to day.
Taking things a day at a time, even with just our skincare, is no easy task. Which is why the theme of customisation has been refreshed for this time of the year.
“To me, customisation is more about open-mindedness and constant learning.”
Open-mindedness and constant learning is something Pauline reflects in all aspects of growing her business. The beginnings of research and development involve the identification of a need, whilst further research and education comes together to tackle said problem. At the end of this enlightening rabbit hole you find a product displayed proudly in our spas and on webstore.
What follows is the beauty of experimentation and
curiosity. The complexities of skin biology are far more erratic than what can
be fixed in a one-off session. Monitoring skin changes through time and
treating them accordingly with the right products can help you put your best
face forward every day.
Of course, this should not mean having an arsenal of products on hand everyday.
Instead, all you need is to understand the different uses of these products and
how they can cater to your different skin needs.
Porcelain, we begin our journey of each individual with a Skin Discovery Analysis. From there, we monitor your skin’s
reactions to treatments, making tiny adjustments along the way. According to
your skin condition, different components of the facial are switched out to
cater to skin sensitivity and maturity. Once you’re done with a session, aftercare
is encouraged with take home products for further skin TLC.
our approach to our services, our products don’t fall too far from the tree. Unknown
to many, most of our products are multi-functional, with varying usage simply
by adjusting application and dosage. Pauline shares the beginning stages of the
Deep Hydrating Lotion and its reception from her peers.
From varying climates all over the world, she would get texts raving about how
the product has helped with stressed out skin from travelling. She notes that
although some uses for the Deep Hydrating Lotion were not initially intended,
their functionality continues to be a crowd pleaser. The product, included in
our Christmas Gift Guide Sets, is definitely a multi-functional
must have in every bag. As a mask in the evening, or a setting spray before you
head out the door – it’s soothing capabilities and handy spray nozzle leads it
to be highly adaptable to different skin needs, at different times of your
open mind with product business development is why Porcelain continues to offer
the service standards it holds today. With the year winding down to an end,
taking the time off to understand oneself is an on-going journey. But much like
skincare, constant education and adaptability is the continuous step forward,
either in personal growth or skin radiance.
year drawing to a close, embrace the gift change with a little helping hand. #GetYourGlowOn
Xmas sets have been carefully curated with multifunctional capabilities to
cater to your varying skincare needs.
festive season and take on the new year with exuding radiance #fromwithin!
Happy Holidays from us at Porcelain.
#GetYourGlowOn Xmas sets and Holiday Gift Guides are currently available on our
webstore here. Enjoy complimentary gift wrapping,
travel accessories and a Skin Discovery Analysis with each purchase.
Cheerful and carefree, she walks into a room and instantly brightens up the space with her vivacious spirit – one of which that also comes with strict discipline.
“Balance is the essence of life!”
In our latest
edition of “It’s What’s On The Inside That Counts” with WearOhWhere, we round
up the new year the best we know how – recounting our journeys over delicious
food. We kick off our conversation with Charlotte Mei, avid traveller, host and
nutritionist, to look at the big picture – life mantras and her take on every
day as it happens. As the year comes to a close, we also take a moment to wind
down and show our appreciation for the little things, refocusing on what truly
At Porcelain, we
believe that finding #RadianceFromWithin begins with knowing oneself and
accepting change as it comes. It’s about dedicating our energies in the right places
and on areas that affects us as individuals.
Charlotte shares her take on this in a little tête-à-tête while preparing the “You’re Magni-fig” sandwich – a festive exclusive created just for Porcelain Origins Café.
Fig was chosen as the key ingredient since it’s her favourite fruit, and just happens to also be a star ingredient in our Hydrocare Bio-Cellulose Mask. Infused with Fig extract, the mask gets a boost of Vitamin A and C which promote exfoliation and skin renewal for a fresh face.
1 slice sourdough
3 tbsp cottage cheese
2 dried figs, sliced
Handful of rocket leaves
1 tsp balsamic glaze
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt, black pepper
On a lightly toasted slice of bread, spread the
cottage cheese and sprinkle some salt over. Lay the slides of dried figs,
rocket leaves, and drizzle with balsamic glaze and olive oil. Finish with some
cracked black pepper.
“Figs are my favourite fruit – they’re sweet, soft yet crunchy at the same time, and full of fibre. I’m using dried figs in this recipe due to seasonality, but fresh figs are just the best thing ever! Cottage cheese and toast are my favourite combination for a quick snack or breakfast. I like cottage cheese for its subtle flavour and creamy texture, and it’s a great source of protein.”
As a food and
wellness advocate, Charlotte narrates her personal journey with food and
self-acceptance. She recalls her initial picky eating habits on the high chair.
As the years progressed, exposure to travel and food programmes began her
interest in food. After having to live alone and provide for herself, her
passion for food and nutrition flourished.
Charlotte attributes her strong personal beliefs to her parents who emphasised the importance of self-worth in all aspects – thought, action and behaviour. To build a healthy relationship with oneself, the TLC must begin from inside out. With Charlotte’s skincare as well, as she reaches for products that are made with natural ingredients and is always making sure she’s moisturised. It’s no wonder a frequent touch up from our Deep Hydrating Lotion seems to always freshen up a face, regardless of the time of day.
ownership of self, listening to your body and what it needs – it’s the perfect,
wind-down read to cap off a new year. We suggest taking it on fresh-face first
with a little time to yourself, some indulgent skincare and an open-faced “You’re
Magni-fig” sandwich. Sweet, unapologetic, and delightful – just as you should
Take in the little
moments, one feel-good read at a time. Read the full story here.
The “You’re Magni-fig” sandwich is available at $9.90 at Porcelain
Origins Café until 31 December 2019.
You’ve just bought a new, 10-step skincare kit and have
all the steps down pat. You’re pretty sure nothing stands in the way of
radiant, glowing skin now — nothing, except for those stubborn bumps under your
skin. That smattering of blackheads on your nose. Enlarged pores on your cheeks…
maybe you have a long way to go before regaining clarity in complexion because
of congestion — or clogged pores, if you will.
TELLTALE SIGNS YOUR SKIN IS CONGESTED
One could have a
seemingly smooth complexion but have hidden congestion issues. A quick test to
see if you suffer from it — run a hand over your face. If your skin feels bumpy
and uneven to the touch, chances are high that it’s congested. More obvious
signs that most people are familiar with are blackheads (especially along the
T-zone and cheeks) and whiteheads.
WHAT IS CONGESTION?
In layman terms, we like to call it “gunk” or “dirt”.
In more formal terms, it’s a combination of impurities, sweat, dead skin cells,
and natural oils that become trapped within the pores, causing blackheads and /
or whiteheads to form. While whiteheads tend to appear as firm, white bumps, blackheads
are clogged pores that remain open and darken due to oxidation.
When pores are often congested and clogged with
impurities, they tend to stretch—causing the appearance of enlarged pores. A lot of times, simply clearing the skin of
blackheads and congestion can help reduce the appearance of large and open
CARING FOR CLEARING CONGESTED SKIN
The tips and tricks are many, so regaining smooth, glowing skin from within is very much possible.
Double Cleansing with a makeup remover / pre-cleanser thoroughly removes environmental pollutants accumulated through the day, making the same job easier for your cleanser. More importantly, pre-cleansing softens your skin so that following products can be absorbed more effectively. Double cleansing is one of the simplest, fastest ways to ensure the skin is thoroughly cleansed of debris, dirt, makeup, and all other incriminating factors needed for congestion to happen.
helps keep your skin clear and more even as it gets rid of flaky skin cells and
loosens keratin buildup. Look for exfoliants
with fruit enzymes as they are gentler and do a better job of dissolving
dead skin cells without irritating or damaging the skin. Even better if the
exfoliator returns water to the skin with hydrating ingredients like aloe
extracts. The goal here is to revive the skin’s surface while preventing
over-drying or irritation. An effective exfoliant does its job without abrasion,
helping to clear your pores while also nourishing the skin.
Avoid any exfoliants that contain micro-beads or
granules as these are generally more aggravating to the skin.
TONING WITH AHAS
One of the most important parts of the daily skin care routine is toning. It balances the skin after cleansing, calms and lowers its pH level. Toning helps prep the skin for any serums that follow, and removes excess oil your cleanser may have missed. Another perk? It shrinks the size of your pores! Find toners with AHAs, as these break the bonds between weakened skin cells, making it much easier to exfoliate and encourage cellular production. New cells = smoother-looking, healthier skin!
Glycolic and lactic acids are two such sources of
AHAs; it gently peels the top layer of the skin, helping dislodge buildup from
clogged pores, and with regular use, improves the skin’s overall appearance and
clarity. These remove excess sebum, impurities and dead skin cells to clarify
the skin to make way for a brighter, clearer complexion.
Remember to always use sunscreen, especially after
using products with AHAs to protect your skin from free radicals and UV damage!
Once your skin is primed and prepped for moisture
(after all that cleansing, exfoliation and toning), it’s important to use a moisturizer
that isn’t too heavy or thick, but provides superior hydration down to the
deeper layers of the skin.
It’s a misconception that one shouldn’t apply
moisturizers if his / her skin is oily. In fact, it’s a pretty big booboo if
you skip this step, especially if your skin is oily! Dehydrated skin often
produces more oil because it perceives the skin to be too dry. But if you feed it
with water to even out the pH balance, it stops bumping up the sebum
production because your skin’s already well-fed.
However, it’s important to find the right moisturizer.
These are those that are non-comedogenic, contain hydrating ingredients and occlusives
to ensure that skin is hydrated and
that hydration is locked within.
If your skin is really dehydrated, consider adding a power-packed serum with ingredients like hyaluronic acid and sodium hyaluronate for a surge of hydration.
Unclogging congested skin can be done faster with
the help of professional extractions! As
always, don’t pick at your skin or attempt extractions on your own because that
introduces more dirt and bacteria to inflamed skin. You know what that means — more
bumps, more blackheads, more zits… more congestion!
Extractions are rarely a pleasant experience but you
can help make the process a little easier and less painful by prepping your
skin for it * gasp. How? Here’s a word you’ve heard countless times in this post
alone — hydration.
When your skin is hydrated, it helps soften the
surface so it’s more pliable, making it easier to extract comedones and
congestion. Dehydrated skin, on the other hand, will harden around the
blockages, locking them in place and thus making it harder or even impossible
to remove. Before your extractions appointment, boost your skin’s hydration as
much as possible with masks and serums! You can thank us later.
Have you ever read a book or listened to a speech and came away from it feeling it was so vacuous, you could sum it up in a line or two? Or, conversely, finished one with your notepad chockfull of hastily scribbled notes of talking points, because there were just so many takeaways? That’s Serena Adsit’s story for us.
series with WearOhWhere was meant to dive deep into our interviewees’ origins —
their original birthplaces and cultures and how they influence their present-day
selves despite being in Singapore and away from “home”.
When we approached Serena to be a part of this series, her story took a slightly different turn. Instead of focusing on the influence of her mixed parentage, she shared how her history as a model shaped her first views of what beauty was and “should be”, creating a toxic cycle where she silently imposed judgment and expectations on others’ bodies and on her own, in line with how much of the outside world similarly does to women’s (not just models’) bodies. We talked about how, in time, she chose to break her silence on her own flaws and “broke (the) spell of perfection”, and how that granted her relief and a profound sense of freedom.
Serena agreed to the interview, while requesting that we cover more ground beyond “what is beauty, success and happiness”… which forms, I guess, the cotton-candy, fluffier aspects of most interviews with successful entrepreneurs (Serena runs Mint Singapore, a commercial modelling agency that represents talents of all ages, shapes and sizes). We talked beauty and its impositions on society at large, and how her EveryBody movement seeks to change that.
Kind of felt
like a throwback to our tough interview with BBC just last
year, where we discussed whether beauty businesses were profiteering off
people’s insecurities and creating too much pressure on women to look a certain
Beyond beauty, we talked about resilience, outgrowing friendships and finding magic in life. And played with Nephra, her gorgeous, affectionate, friendly feline.
Detoxification is an integral part of our skincare philosophy — and for the skin’s recovery process, really. It’s one of the biggest processes that’s fundamental and necessary to help us regain clear, radiant skin, but also the most heavily misunderstood. While understandable, it’s also often a misconception… so let’s get straight to the lowdown.
WHAT IS DETOXIFICATION?
It’s a slightly misleading term, in the sense that your skin isn’t getting rid of toxins, but rather, clearing out the impurities. This includes the most superficial layer of the skin all the way down to the deepest ones. It means the restoration of the most important thing to skin health — pH levels.
For the uninitiated, detoxification happens in the form of spots and zits. So yes — sometimes, those nasties are good things! Even when they seem to keep. Coming. Back. When you make a deliberate move to detoxify, you’re essentially purging your skin of congestion and dirt — and where else can it go but up and out? This means it’s completely normal to have your skin break out, clear up, and then break out again. It’s called waves of healing.
WAVES OF HEALING
What’s that, you ask? I liken this healing process to decluttering — you don’t stop until it’s all gone. Similarly, when your skin is done cleaning out a pocket of toxins, it starts to clear up. Then, it goes deeper to find another pocket of dust to stake, thus causing another good kind of breakout. It can be tough to ride out these waves and many give up (who likes spots?), but bear with it! Once it’s gone, it’s likely your acne will be, too — if you have patience and the discipline in following a stringent skincare regime, and staying foundation-free.
We all have skin woes and goals, but did you know? To get anywhere
near your skin goal (be it brightening, anti-aging or a more even skin tone), your
skin needs to be as healthy, “normal” and pH-balanced as possible for it to
reap maximum benefits from any treatment or product.
WHAT IS PH BALANCE?
“pH” stands for “potential hydrogen” and it measures the acidity of substances. Beneath our skin layers lie our oil and sweat glands, and these contribute to our skin’s pH level – which is approximately 5.5, making it slightly acidic. When our skin is too alkaline, it becomes dry and sensitive, resulting in faster ageing, eczema, etc. When it’s too acidic, it causes inflammation and becomes more susceptible to bacterial infection — expect enlarged pores, blackheads, and acne… Therefore, the trick to healthy skin lies in ensuring that your skin’s pH is balanced at 5.5.
Before all else, we need to get your skin ready for the good stuff. This means clearing congestion, balancing the skin’s pH and moisture levels, and renewing the skin on a cellular level. This first stage — what we call the Intensive phase — is usually the most demanding, but also essential. Basically, your skin needs to undergo a reboot so it’s a blank canvas that’s ready for revival.
One of Porcelain’s core competencies is curating personalized, holistic skincare treatment plans for our clients. All new clients first experience a three-pronged skin analysis (including the Skin Discovery) which allows our therapists to design a bespoke regimen around their skins. After that, most new clients undergo said Intensive phase of treatment cycles before progressing to the Maintenance phase. Intensive phases are intended to rejig the skin back to normalcy as quickly as healthily possible… for this reason, severely congested skin, for example, has to undergo multiple cycles of hydrating, extractions and recovery facials to restore skin back to its clear, radiant, balanced self — detoxification. A clean slate.
WHY DOES DETOXIFICATION HAPPEN?
With some treatments (e.g. QuintessentialTM) and products (e.g. Balance – Sebum Control Essence), detoxification is a deliberate process we introduce to your skin to help with recovery. Again: Sometimes, it takes place in the form of a familiar, unwanted friend — zits. Your skin is simply trying to get rid of impurities, and it’s completely normal.
Here’s why / how detoxification can happen:
CONGESTION Oil, dead cells, hair follicles and makeup tend to collect in pores and cause congestion, resulting in breakouts and dull, dehydrated skin. Pollution is also another culprit, which is why proper skincare habits for urbanites are so important.
STRESS High levels of stress do show up on your face… that skin redness you’re experiencing? That’s increased sensitivity. Pimples? That’s due to increased sebum production and slower cell turnover.
LIFESTYLE HABITS Alcohol, smoking, too little sleep and too little water are surefire ways to introduce toxins to the body… and you know where these tend to show up!
TOO MUCH SUGAR Processed sugar causes inflammation in the body and is one of the biggest contributors of acne.
WHY DO WE NEED TO DETOX?
Simply because clean and clear skin is the only way for good stuff to ever penetrate. In fact, good stuff on clogged pores is only junk on junk — meaning it can trigger breakouts! In which case, it’s not so much the product that’s triggering a reaction, but your skin not being able to absorb the nutrients. If the product’s not going in, it’s staying on… meaning you’re just clogging it up more!
QUICK SIGNS THAT SAY YOU NEED A SKIN REBOOT
– Dull, sallow skin – Uneven skin tone – Oily skin – Wrinkles and sagging skin – Dry and / or sensitive skin
HOW DO WE DETOX?
FEEDING YOURSELF RIGHT
one of those that can survive on half a cup of water each day? Start living and
flushing your body with more than that (we
read somewhere you should be drinking half your weight in ounces), because it
aids in internal waste removal — so less toxins try to escape by popping up on
your skin! Add some lemon for extra detoxing power.
junk food? It might be hard to cut it out completely (and we won’t ask you to
try), but try laying off it for just one week. These include animal fats, dairy
products, white bread, fast food, and sugar. For just seven days, eat clean
with fresh berries and fruits. Feel the difference.
SWEAT IT OUT
Exercise gets your heart racing and your skin perspiring, which helps to cleanse impurities. That’s a handy excuse to take up a hot yoga session or if you prefer the an even more relaxed method, hit the nearest sauna!
treatments are one way to stimulate detoxification. For example, intensive
extractions sessions help to systematically and professionally rid
the skin of congestion (none of that DIY zit-popping!). With time, experience
smoother, brighter and more even skin that actually absorbs all the goodness
from award-winning products like ours (;
Another favourite facial treatment of ours is the ProionicTM facial. Aside from its winning anti-aging formula and benefits, it helps boost cellular ionic movement, exchange and equilibrium. Too Greek? The treatment basically helps to jiggle our cells and help our skin purge impurities easier, thus improving its overall health and metabolism.
brings us to the next point. Products! Supporting extractions and facial treatments
with a proper regime at home with efficacious skincare products helps heaps. Double
cleansing, exfoliating, toning and hydrating are key to keeping the skin clear
Double Cleanse. Doing this with a
pre-cleanser thoroughly removes environmental pollutants accumulated through the
day, making the same job easier for your cleanser. More importantly,
pre-cleansing softens your skin so that following products can be absorbed more
Exfoliate. This helps keep your skin clear and more even as it gets rid of flaky skin cells. Look for chemical exfoliants as they do a better job of dissolving dead skin cells without irritating or damaging the skin. The exfoliator should be applied to damp skin in a gentle, circular motion. Avoid scrubbing and opt for an exfoliator for sensitive skin if you’re experiencing distressed skin, as it only serves to aggravate and exacerbate any existing skin issues.
Tone. One of the most important parts of the daily skin care routine is toning. Face toners balance the skin after cleansing, calming and lowering its pH level. Toning also helps prep the skin for any serums that follow and removes excess oil your cleanser may have missed. Another perk? It shrinks the size of your pores!
Layer Hydration. Complete the detox regimen by keeping moisture levels balanced. Opt for hydrating serums and essences that contain ingredients like Hyaluronic Acid, Sodium Hyaluronate, and Aloe Barbadensis leaf extracts to help lock in optimum hydration.
NOW WE’RE DONE DETOXING. HOW ABOUT SOME PROTECTION FEE FOR THE SKIN?
from clearing the skin of congestion, we should also be working on protecting it
from the likes of pollution and airborne bacteria (hands off your face, now!). Now,
wouldn’t that help in creating less work for our skin in the first place?
Our best friend for that is…. Antioxidants! Aside from aloe vera, our next favourite hero ingredients are those that come jam-packed with these. Super multitaskers that they are, antioxidants fight environmental aggressors, neutralize free radicals and heal the skin.
YOUR SKIN DETOX STARTS NOW.
Do you want to hop on the detoxification bandwagon and reboot your skin? Curious to find out what your skin is like, and how exactly to care for it? For a limited time only, enjoy a Skin Discovery analysis at $65 and receive a complimentary 3-piece customisable travel set (worth $102).*
What’s inside the Travel Set? 1x Cleanser, Toner, Gel, and Travel Pouch
* $65 is redeemable for credits to offset the cost of any ala carte treatment. Terms & conditions apply.