One of the lovely things about blogging has been just how much I have learnt about products, skin and brands. I don't think a week goes by that I don't learn something different. Something I have been focusing on lately has been adding hydration to my routine without overloading my skin, as it has been less dry than normal thanks to the reasonable weather we have been having.
The differences between dry and dehydrated skin is that dry skin is missing oil and dehydrated skin is missing water. I find that I can be a mix of dry and dehydrated and I am certainly not ditching the facial oils completely but I have been adding these products in for a boost of hydration without heaviness. These are also products on the more luxury end of the spectrum, they look and feel the part although they may well stretch your budget, if you are serious about your skincare and like to invest, these are well worth exploring.
First we have the Antonia Burrell - Forest Dew skin conditioner, comes in other sizes. This product is rather interesting, it sits somewhere between a serum and a toner, closer perhaps to the Asian trend for essences. The size I was sent comes with a spray top, but it is worth noting it too thick to spray directly on the face and so I spray it in to my hands or you could use a cotton pad if you prefer. My skin has been going through a rather fussy stage, leading me to slow down my usual testing of products, but this has been calming and soothing and a pleasure to use. The ingredients as always with Antonia's line are excellent, lavender flower water and the gorgeous cucumber extract as well as French fusose polysaccharide which plumps the skin in a similar way to hyluronic acid but even more effective according to the information on Antonia's site. The Swiss Epilobium is said to reduce inflammation and mattify the skin, so a good one for acne prone complexions.
I am impressed with this product, it does everything it says it does and is especially soothing on sensitive acne prone skin like mine. During August I used it daily and found I didn't need much else over the top. Now I am using it more occasionally but the bottle is still going strong so it lasts a while. Some serums can be sticky but this one is fairly easily absorbed, I adore Antonia's oil based serums and think this would mix perfectly with those.
The brand 001 London is a performance led brand using a fusion of naturally inspired ingredients and a science led approach. The founder Ada Ooi is an aromatherapist and beauty therapist who created the range that was inspired by the fusion of modern and traditional in London. I have been testing out the Hydro-Sensitive Replenish duo which includes a 30 ml Rosa Damascena Essence mist and a 15 ml Active Marine Power concentrate. Again I have been testing these since August and the bottles are just starting to run low, the sizes would be perfect for travel but do last. The Rosa Damascena Essence mist is gorgeous to spritz throughout the day or before oils and serums. It has a gentle rose scent and includes rose water and Rosa Damascena flower oil, sometimes inexpensive rosewater options can smell cloying and synthetic, but with this one you do really feel like you are getting great quality. The Active Marine Power concentrate is a very interesting gel based serum, it is a little thicker than the Antonia Burrell version but I am a little bit in love with it's glow giving properties. I personally love to apply it after spritzing the Rosa Damascena mist and add a drop or two or oil and haven't yet needed to add moisturiser over the top although I would need to in the winter. The ingredients are rather interesting, not one for the purists, I find that products with more cutting edge ingredients often also include others that wouldn't be considered as green. The key ingredient is an algae complex, I so often find that marine based ingredients work wonders on the skin, so it's inclusion in this serum seems fitting, you also have Ubiquinone, which whilst sounding scary is actually Co-enzyme Q10 which is an anti-oxidant. These products are both rather lovely, however as lovely as the Rosa Damascena mist is, the price point is just too steep for me to consider it a regular repurchase, so would be kept for when I was feeling flush.
It is worth noting that 001 do not currently list their full ingredients list on the site but I am told they are in the process of putting them back up, so watch this space. For now I have listed them below so you can make up your own mind as to whether the products would be for you, I personally am willing to make exceptions on ingredients for performance and this is one of those cases, especially given the quality of the actives higher up the ingredients list.
If you are looking for a serum to add to your routine both brands are very impressive, especially if you love luxury. If you are looking for budget skincare, don't worry, look out for another post soon that won't break the bank.
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