An Honest Review Of DUOLAB – The Skincare Gadget Everyone’s Talking About

23rd May 2023

DUOLAB is the latest in personalised beauty to hit the market and it’s being coined as the skincare laboratory that sits on your bathroom shelf. But is it worth the spend? Read on to find out exactly what I thought after three solid weeks of use. Spoiler alert… It’s a complete game-changer.

I’ll be honest, I was pretty cynical when I was asked to review DUOLAB. It sounded like a lot of added faff to add to my AM and PM beauty routines.

Then there was the blending. The DUOLAB device is essentially a machine that blends a base and a serum together depending on your real-time skincare needs. It also heats the product up to the skin’s natural temperature – that’s 37-42°C FYI – and all under sterile conditions with no room for the bacterial contamination you may find in your usual pot of moisturiser. It was all sounding a little complicated for my liking. Is it actually worth the hassle? Spoiler alert: yes it is!

I’ve been using DUOLAB for three weeks now and I can honestly say, I’m sold. It has 100% made a difference to the texture of my skin, makeup glides on better and, the best bit, I’m enjoying the 90-second ritual it gives me in the morning. I’ll break it down into why I’m a complete DUOLAB convert…

The formulations are 100% preservative-free and come from an industry legend

DUOLAB comes from the people behind L’Occitane, a well-trusted favourite of mine for a long time. The formulations they have created here are seriously good quality, with up to double the concentration of many other moisturisers on the market. They are all 100% preservative-free and drawn from 93 – 100% hard-working, natural ingredients. This means it’s microbiome friendly and protects the skin’s natural balance, those friendly bacteria and the barrier function. Plus, they are safe to use on all skin types whilst still packing a punch when it comes to results.

I had recently had an outbreak of dry, red and inflamed skin around my mouth which has since been diagnosed as a type of dermatitis. I felt confident using the formulas on my skin without further irritation and I’ve genuinely seen an improvement in just three weeks.

It adds a little bit of me time to your daily routine

What I initially thought would be a faff, I have grown to love. There’s something indulgent about popping your two chosen formulas – a base and an active serum – into the little pod before loading it in the DUOLAB device and hearing it pump and heat its magic in 90 seconds. And because the machine heats the cream to an optimum temperature to be absorbed into the skin and really get the most out of the active ingredients, it feels warming and super luxurious. The closest thing I’ve had to feeling like having a spa treatment on my face at home.

There’s something so indulgent about popping your two chosen formulas - into the device and hearing it pump and heat its magic in 90 seconds.

I genuinely saw results

Each pod delivers on what it says it will do. The daily Hydraserum + Brillance Boost gives me a glow unrivalled by the countless moisturisers I have trialed throughout the years – it actually looks like an illuminating primer on the skin and is the perfect base for foundation. Whilst the Hydramelt + Time Tonic is perfect for the evening when you want something more hard-hitting that is going to boost collagen production and nourish overnight. It has really helped me stick to a proper beauty regime when my skin has flared up, soothed it and, most importantly, not added to the problem.

It will make you rethink your beauty regime for good

The most surprising thing about using the DUOLAB is that it is really easy. Even if first impressions make it seem like you’ll be adding complicated bells and whistles steps to your routine, it actually simplifies it, cutting out the products your skin doesn’t need.

The Brillance Boost is so good it actually looks like an illuminating primer on the skin - the perfect base for foundation.

The ritual of dropping the pod into the device and watching it pump and heat up also makes you appreciate your skincare routine and stick to it. In fact, I’m going away for five days soon and considering taking the whole thing with me because I will genuinely miss it. It’s not a cheap piece of equipment – pricing starts at £179 – but it has shown me results in record time and I’ve not come across another product like it in the beauty world. The brand even sends you a TerraCycle pre-postage paid pack to dispose of your used pods in so they can be recycled.

The verdict? As much as the DUOLAB looks like the epitome of high-tech skincare, its core value is simplicity and that’s what I love about it. It’s pared back my skincare shelf and made me fall in love with my beauty routine again. And, well, the results speak for themselves.

Anything else?

‌Since hitting the market and gaining countless rave reviews from beauty editors and skincare influencers, DUOLAB have launched their first collaboration. Teaming up with heritage brand LimeLife by Alcone, the partnership is the first exclusive collection developed for another brand and comprises new capsules specifically developed to give you your best skin yet based on the former’s 70-year experience in the beauty world. Starting out as a makeup brand providing the stars of stage and screen with makeup in NYC, they forayed into makeup used by some of the world’s top makeup artists, before developing a commercial line and, later, a hard working skincare range. This latest collaboration is a fine example of LimeLife’s want and ability to be nimble and innovative in an ever changing field.

‌So, what’s on offer? The partnership has created five new capsules with the softest of textures and results-driven formulas, again using the revolutionary system of interchangeable moisturising bases and targeted serum-likeboosters to give you the freedom to choose the skincare you need on any given day.

‌Choose from two bases; the Hydrammelt Base, a highly concentrated hyaluronic acid and borage oil-packed combo which deeply penetrates the skin to repair, restore, and keep it hydrated around the clock – perfect for those with lackluster, sensitive, or dry skin. The Hydraserum Base, packed full of powerful hyaluronic acid and glycogen, a more gel-like formula that leaves skin feelingsmooth, plump, bouncy, and intensely hydrated from the first use.

Pair these with your choice of three Boosters. There’s the Brilliance Boost Booster – great for giving a healthy glow thanks to its inclusion of sea buckthorn oil and a cocktail of supercharged vitamins and antioxidants. The Poreless Perfector Booster which, as the name suggests, helps to minimize pores and resurface the skin with sloughing lactic acid and nourishing rosehip oil. And finally, the Time Tonic Booster – which stimulates cell renewal and boosts the production of collagen thanks to acmella flower and plumping peptides to give you skin that is smoother and firmer.

‌Find out more about the innovative collaboration and shop the products below…

Shop the DUOLAB x LimeLife products at


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