Serums: Estée Lauder Clear Difference VS Clinique Smart Custom Repair



Cosmetics truly are part of my life. Not only because I’m a woman who loves to explore the beauty universe and its innovations, but also because of my former job as a beauty editor that developed a passion. It’s fascinating to see that all these little vials and jars can actually modify your skin on many levels. And what more relevant than serums to accomplish that primordial task?

What is a serum

A serum is to be used between toner and moisturizer, it preps and activates skin’s activity so it can fully absorb and take the best of the functional ingredients applied next. Its texture usually resembles that of a very thin cream that instantly disappears into your pores.

A serum is to be incorporated into a full routine for tremendous results, otherwise it’s just a waste of money if you’re using it alone (remember you always have to learn something from the Japanese, and the millefeuille beauty technique is probably the truest example).


I’ve been trying two glorified and quite famous serums to treat my acne-prone oily skin lately. My skin is currently having a lot of troubles adapting to France, even my scalp is greasier than ever! These two serums were recommended to me by my dear friend Marie, who’s also a beauty junky (you should see her cosmetic shelves!). One worked for her, the other wasn’t so good. The first was a little bit disappointing on me, the latter works better and I’m still using it (I know my skin troubles not only comes from outer but especially from inner troubles which are better known as JUNK FOOD and SUGAR so yeah). Welcome to the first round of my Beauty Tournament dedicated to serums: Clinique Smart’s Custom-Repair Serum VS Estée Lauder’s Clear Difference Advanced Blemish Serum.




The Clinique Smart line comes packed in silver jars that express luxe medicine. And the serum’s is so slender. They’re made in a shimmery metallic fabric surrounded with hard and thick plastic for protection, lightweight-ness and depth. I like it as it does look really professional and the aesthetic suits the product’s functionality: to deliver the best for your skin.

Estée Lauder


Estée Lauder’s Clear Difference serum comes with the signature bottle of the brand. This one is made of a blueish thick and transparent glass that adds a kind of mysterious mood to the product. It’s topped with a golden cap where the legendary EL is engraved. Simple yet glamorous, I love love love.

Texture & Scent


The Clinique serum has a cute peachy color. It applies easily on skin but I feel like despite the thickness of the product, one or two drops are not enough for face and neck (and I have a small face!) so whole thing (it’s 30ml) is designed to last about a month. The scent is very subtle and makes the experience an enjoyable one.

Estée Lauder

It’s a little bit more watery than the Clinique one. It’s opaque and white with subtle skyblue touches which perfectly completes the jar’s design. I like it when the loop is looped. It absorbs pretty quick but leaves the skin a little bit dry, which is a shame. The scent is super strong and I personally don’t like it. However, it doesn’t stay on for a long time, only a couple of seconds, when you apply it directly on face. One or two drops are enough for face and neck.

Functionality & Efficiency


The Custom-Repair line claims to adapt to your skin type to hydrate, fight against aging, brighten and tighten and reduce blemishes. My friend used it on her acne-prone skin and it indeed made her skin flawless!! So I thought, why not me?! The science behind this product sounded amazing and I was already dreaming of a smooth and perfect skin texture but…

After a month, my skin was indeed more supple and tightened, I could feel and even see it! I guess it did have an impact on my skin’s aging too. I also think it helped brighten and reduce redness. But I didn’t see major improvement regarding acne. At least it didn’t break me out.

Estée Lauder

The Advanced Blemish Serum aims at reducing blemishes via the Triple Action Clarity Technology that’s proper to Estée Lauder. Oil-free formula controls oil secretion and won’t clog pores either! I tried a lot of products that claimed to be non-clogging but I always ended up having new blackheads or whiteheads somehow growing on my skin. Since I started using this serum, I can’t say all my troubles disappeared, but I appear to have a smoother, brighter complexion, fairer too. And less, less black and whiteheads.

However, it did break out my friend. We always thought we had similar skins, but these serum trials actually showed us we were all wrong, oopsy (you know what it is to have friends and always claim crazy but loveable similitudes, we all do that).


My heart goes to Estée Lauder’s Clear Difference serum, which wins this beauty tournament despite its scent that I particularly dislike! The Clinique Smart serum seems to be very good too, however, it was disappointing on correcting my skin’s main problem, which is my acne-prone texture and blemishes (and it’s a little pricey for a month) Whereas Estée Lauder’s CD is doing a very great job. It was slightly difficult to make a decision until next week, as I was using a soothing cream and mist from Yves Rocher that I found out were the main reasons of my breakouts the past few weeks. However, since I stopped using these two products, Estée Lauder’s serum was able to work its magic and I start to find confidence again in my skin!

Clinique Smart’s Custom-Repair serum costs 73E for 30ml and 102E for 50ml.

Estée Lauder’s Clear Difference Advanced Blemish Serum costs 67E for 30ml, 95E for 50ml and 109E for 75ml.

What serum are you currently using? If you don’t use a serum, do you plan on using one now? Tell me everything in the comment section. If you liked this post, you can also show support by following on Instagram.


6 Replies to “Serums: Estée Lauder Clear Difference VS Clinique Smart Custom Repair”

  1. I’m currently using Klairs Vitamin Drop Serum. I have no idea what these Estee Lauder & Clinique serums are made of, but I’m guessing they are quite different from it? I was personally rooting for the EL one, because I liked it’s packaging more, haha. 😀

    Btw, your blog’s new design looks very professional! 🙂


    1. Well, both EL and Clinique serums mostly contain their own patent ingredients but I guess yours does too 🙂 I googled it and apparently, it focuses on Vitamin C, right? That sounds pretty energyzing!
      Yes, Estée Lauder’s packagings are so elegant, I feel you!
      Thank you! I hope I can keep it up this way 🙂 Thank you for stopping by Lona!


  2. I’m using the Klairs Vitamin C Serum as well, but since it is a vitamin C serum it first place it does not count 😀 (also because I’m using it directly after washing my face and using toner, and I use the other essences and creams afterwards)…I’m also using the CosRX Light Propolis Ampoule instead of a serum at the moment.

    The Estée Lauder Serum looks really pretty, there is a thing about their products that makes them so elegant and mature…but also reminds me of my mother in first place 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Vitamin C products seem to be magical, I never really got the chance to try any but I heard a lot of good things about them! Same with CosRX (but it’s mostly from you girls, haha)!
      Haha does your mother use a lot of Estée Lauder products or is it the mature mood of the brand that reminds you of her? 🙂


        1. Haha these things happen, like I always connect Guerlain with my mom when she doesn’t even like the brand that much. But she had some when I was a kid and that inked in my memories haha.

          Liked by 1 person

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