It pays to have a fellow skin care-obsessed colleague who also is a bargain-hunting shopaholic. I would've never heard of this quite incredible deal if it weren't for her. Post-Christmas, Eve Lom were having 50% off some of their gift sets, including "The Perfectors". Normally £90, the set was slashed down to £45. Still a lot of money, but considering it contained 3 full size products that purchased on their own in Australia would've cost $377, it simply was too good of a deal to ignore. As further incentive, they were offering a free 15ml sample of their Rescue Mask (about a $20 value given the 100ml is $135), plus free shipping. Though still a splurge, I didn't want to miss out on a rare opportunity to secure luxe items for less. All up, I paid just under $95 for the Brightening Cream (50ml), Cleanser (100ml) and Flawless Radiance Primer (50ml). These products retail for $170, $128 and $79 respectively, so paying just over $30 on average a piece was a steal.
Absolutely lovely texture and scent, but not the most hydrating night cream I've encountered (even something like Trilogy Rosapene Night Cream with a few drops of argan oil fares better). I don't feel like adding a face oil to it like I would any other night cream since the product is so eye-wateringly expensive. It doesn't feel right to change the composition, you know? It should be perfect already and the stuff of miracles if it's $170! It does feel very soothing, moisture-boosting and plumping on the skin, and it's a pleasure to use. It gives the impression of being expensively made, well formulated and nicely packaged. I just can't get over the price. There is no way in hell I would pay the normal price for it (not simply because I can't afford it, but because I don't think it's in any way justified by the actual composition), though I do acknowledge the enjoyment derived from using a luxury product should count for something. I'll be rationing mine and treating myself to it when my skin needs a little pampering, but I certainly don't anticipate lining up to repurchase.
Ingredients: Aqua (water), Dimethicone, Propanediol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Polyglyceryl-6 Distearate, Crambe Abyssinica Seed Oil, Glycerin, Divinyldimethicone/Dimethicone Copolymer, Betaine, Phenoxyethanol, Cetearyl Olivate, Jojoba Esters, Astragalus Membranaceus Root Extract, Bupleurum Falcatum Root Extract, Sorbitan Olivate, Atractyloides Macrocephala Root Extract, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Glyceryl Stearate SE, Allantoin, Cetyl Alcohol, Polyglyceryl-3 Beeswax, Sodium Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Glyceryl Dibehenate, Carbomer, Tribehenin, Sodium Hyaluronate, Isohexadecane, Ethylhexylglycerin, Tocopherol, Glyceryl Behenate, Sodium Hydroxide, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Disodium EDTA, C12-13 Pareth-23, C12-13 Pareth-3, Polysorbate 80, Rosa Damascena Flower Oil, Citronellol, Methyl Undecenoyl Leucinate, Geraniol, Linalool, Eugenol.
I was so curious to finally try out this cult product. I've heard lots of mixed reviews, from the ~controversy~ with mineral oil being its first ingredient, to people swearing by it after trying many high end cleansers. It has a distinctive herbal, medicinal smell which initially caught me off guard. It's not intolerable, but certainly is a defining part of the experience. The texture is probably closest to Emma Hardie Moringa Cleansing Balm of all the cleaners I've tried, except not as thick and oily, and it doesn't irritate the eyes or leave a film on the skin. But essentially, it's a semi-solid that dissolves into an oil upon contact with the skin. I like that it feels very smooth on the skin, it's easy to dissolve (no small lumps unlike with Clinique Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm), it feels luxuriously balmy, not thin and greasy. It's like administering a spa treatment to your face each time you use it. You do need to go over the eye area several times to get rid of mascara and eyeliner, but it does take everything off. It might not be as quick and effective in removing eye makeup as Bioderma Créaline H20, but it still does the trick.
The proper way to use it is with a muslin cloth (a whole elaborate routine is described on the jar), but I usually can't be bothered and just rub it all over my face in circular motions before washing it off in the shower. It doesn't leave any residue or dry out my skin, and I don't find any remnants of makeup on my face after I step out of the shower. Surprisingly, I liked this cleanser more than I anticipated. It's one of the best balm/oil cleansers I've used in terms of efficacy and enjoyment. A big part of that is the fact I paid significantly less than retail price. If I paid $128, I probably would be harsher in my judgments.
Ingredients: Paraffinum Liquidum (Mineral Oil), Peg-30 Lanolin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Bis-Diglyceryl Polyacyladipate-2, Aluminum Stearate, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Peg-75 Lanolin, Phenoxyethanol, Eugenia Caryophyllus (Clove) Leaf Oil, Humulus Lupulus (Hops) Oil, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Oil, Eucalyptus Globulus Leaf Oil, BHT.
Flawless Radiance Primer
I don't really get primers, and I've yet to encounter one which I find genuinely effective. The closest is probably Laura Mercier Foundation Primer - Radiance, and even then, the difference isn't huge or essential to my makeup routine. It's more an extra step for special occasions as added insurance that the complexion's looking its best. The Flawless Radiance Primer doesn't seem to do much in terms of improving makeup application or prolonging wear time. The consistency is on the liquid side and it's more or less like putting on a hydrating, lightweight moisturiser. The texture is undoubtedly very pleasant. It's smooth, blends out easily and absorbs well while leaving a protective, moisturised barrier in between the skin and your foundation. I think it does assist foundations with a thicker texture (whether naturally or because they've dried out a little over time) to apply in a less cakey, patchy manner. It also helps slightly with luminosity, but pretty much any good moisturiser will also do that, plus I tend to pick foundations with a dewy finish anyway. I do appreciate tremendously that this is foremost a hydrating primer that feels more like a moisturiser, rather than something mattifying/velvety and designed for oily/combination skin (like Benefit POREfessional, which I've never been a fan of). The packaging also goes some way in justifying the price tag, with a weighty cap and the smart long, thin nozzle that prevents excess product from being wasted or contaminated.
Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Hydrogenated Polydecene, Glycerin, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Dimethicone, Cetearyl Alcohol, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Niacinamide, Glyceryl Stearate, Nylon-12, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Dicaprylyl Ether, Squalane, Phenoxyethanol, Potassium Behenoyl Hydroxyproline, Ethylhexylglycerin, Polysilicone-11, Sodium Carbomer, Chlorphenesin, Xanthan Gum, Mica, Tocopheryl Acetate, Behenic Acid, Disodium Edta, Sodium Hyaluronate, Retinyl Palmitate, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Pancratium Maritimum Extract, Rosa Centifolia Flower Extract, Bht, Rubus Idaeus Leaf Cell Culture, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891).