As currently described on BeautyBay, the Anti Ageing Discovery Collection contains:
- Liquid Gold (50ml) – An overnight resurfacing and firming lotion.
- Micro Cleanse (30ml) – A granulated exfoliator which smoothes and clears skin.
- Balancing Cleanser (30ml) - A gentle, creamy cleanser suitable for all skin types which clears skin of impurities, oil and makeup.
- Daily Essential Moisturiser SPF 50+ (30ml) – A weightless, highly protective cream which locks in moisture and hydration.
- Essential Hydration Cream (15ml) – An aromatic soothing cream which hydrates and restores vitality.
Instead of the Essential Hydration Cream, I actually received the Absoluté Eye Complex (15ml). When I notified BeautyBay, they asked me to send pictures to prove I'd been sent the wrong item which was way too much effort. It wasn't a huge deal that a eye cream was sent to me rather than a richer, more nighttime appropriate face cream (after all, they were the same size, and I'm guessing the eye cream is the pricier product), but it was just somewhat annoying I didn't get what I thought I'd ordered.
The Absoluté Eye Complex is a clear gel which has a cooling sensation once applied. It's very lightweight and almost watery, and you need only a very small amount for the whole eye area. I find that when it comes to eye treatments, I prefer more traditional creams than gels or serums (the Murad Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisture for Eyes is my favourite so far). They just feel more richly moisturising and comfortable on the skin than a gel, which is almost too liquid and not as hydrating. I've tested out a small number of eye creams but none of them have wowed me or done anything particularly noticeable. Then again, my under eye area isn't overly dry and I don't have lines or wrinkles yet (knock on wood). This Absoluté Eye Complex is just passable to me. Nothing remarkable about it but nothing prominently negative either.
The Daily Essential Moisturiser is Caroline Hirons approved ("really light, absorbs brilliantly and doesn't clog pores"), despite containing her most reviled ingredient, mineral oil. In her words, it's not too far up the ingredients listing so it doesn't stress her too much. It has SPF 50+ which provides necessary sun protection after using a product like Liquid Gold due to alpha hydroxy acids increasing the skin's sensitivity to the sun. Despite the high SPF, it leaves no white cast or chalky residue. I packed this 30ml tube to Europe with me in September and really enjoyed using it. It's not exactly what I'd describe as "really light" — it's more like a typical thicker cream which skins into the skin well and gives an immediate sense of comforting hydration, but at same time feels slightly greasy and heavy. It's an ideal base for tinted moisturiser or foundation (possibly due to the mineral oil component).
The Balancing Cleanser is a fairly straightforward product with an uncomplicated ingredients list. It reminds me quite a bit of a thicker version of Cetaphil with a faint chemical smell. It's like rubbing in a watered down moisturiser onto the skin. It doesn't foam but isn't rich enough to be a cream cleanser. The blurb on the back says it removes all traces of face and eye makeup, an ambitious claim at best. I don't see this taking off waterproof mascara and long-wearing eyeliner. I only use this to clean my face in the shower if I haven't worn any makeup for the day. Washed all off, the skin is left feeling nicely cleansed and not stripped or dried out.
Micro Cleanse is a supercharged exfoliator with a double whammy of AHAs and physical granules to really polish the skin. It smells like a mix between candy canes and mouthwash, and feels a bit like rubbing toothpaste loaded with slightly coarse granules onto the face. There's definitely a tingling sensation paired with mintiness from the peppermint oil. This is a product with immediate results. The skin is left scrubbed, fresh and radiant, and feels incredibly smooth and soft afterwards. It's just not something I'd use on a frequent basis due to how potent it seems. I normally reach for it only when my skin is in particular need of strong exfoliation, either due to congestion or flakiness/dryness.
Liquid Gold is one of those oft-raved about skin care products that I've been curious to try for a very long time. For a while, I didn't know exactly what it was. It's not what you'd normally characterise as a toner, moisturiser, exfoliator, serum or treatment, though I suppose it has elements of all of those things. I've been using it as instructed, at night before heading off to bed, poured onto a cotton pad until it's adequately moist (but not soaked) and smoothing it all over my face, and then placing nothing on top.
It took a good deal of trial and error to determine how much I should be using each time. The first time I used too little and couldn't feel anything. The second time, I used just enough to dampen the face a little bit. The third time, the cotton pad was 70% soaked and I had enough to cover the neck as well. My face started to radiate heat for about half a minute which was not a pleasant experience.
Liquid Gold has an almost overwhelming smell of alcohol, akin to subjecting the face to an antibacterial wipe. It leaves a slight sticky residue and a very slight feeling of tightness. Like Micro Cleanse, I am a bit paranoid of the strength of this product and am hesitant to use it on a regular basis. This is a product that delivers noticeable results. In the morning after I've applied this before bed, my skin appears smoother, softer and clearer, like a layer of dead skin cells and dullness has been polished off. Whenever I feel my skin is in need of extra overnight exfoliation and rejuvenation, Liquid Gold is my pick.