Thursday, 15 October 2015

Cult Beauty Box by Caroline Hirons: My Thoughts (and they're all good!)

Caroline Hirons. If you haven't heard of her, what are you even still doing here? An expert in her field, Caroline knows a thing or two about your skin, and if you and you skin have yet to encounter her wisdom, believe me, you will both be ever grateful for it.

Caroline has recently started a joint venture with Cult Beauty to bring an expertly curated Beauty Box, filed with a collection of skin treats to help improve and nourish any complexion. Bearing in mind here, sweeping strokes for all folks, some products may be a hit for some and a miss for others. But you know what, every single thing in this box was an absolute hit for me.

This box of luxury goodies contains 6 full size and 2 trial size products, the thematic of which is to de-stress and offer glow and hydration to those complexions a little on the side of lacklustre. I know what you're thinking here, but Lucy, you're oily skinned! Well, yes I am. But there is a place here for every item to slot happily in my routine.

Totalling at a value of just a little over £170.00, this box retailed at £100.00 and contains the following:
Now that is quite the line-up of oversees, indie and cult beauty brands, a lot of which have been on my wishlist and watchlist for quite some time. What surprises me most (in the most pleasantest way possible), is a lot of these brands are natural and/or organic and every last one of these products stand to merit. 

RMS Beauty Raw Coconut Cream

Once upon a time, I assumed that solidified coconut cream was just solidified coconut cream. It didn't differ from brand-to-brand, or even coconut-to-coconut. Oh how very wrong I was. The RMS Beauty Raw Coconut Cream contains the most divine and luxurious coconut cream I have ever had the pleasure of gracing my face with. 

As it has been solidified into a cream - or what I would ascertain as a balm - this wonderful light coconut oil is easy enough to scoop up and apply directly to your skin. While there are multiple uses for coconut oil, I used this solely as a cleanser for removing make-up. Once heated by the warmth of your skin, this balms melts into a wonderfully thin and comforting oil. 

Make-up is no match for this oil. It expertly removes every last trace of make-up (yes, even that hard-to-remove stuff we use on our eyes) and it's safe and gentle enough to cause no irritation. I find my skin is left feeling nourished - none of that tight, irritating stuff here, thank you - and my eyes are not reddened or itchy. The sensation and effectiveness of this product is so indulgent my skin can't help but feel treated.

While coconut is one of my favourite fragrances and flavours, I may be a little bias here, but the scent of this oil is absolutely decadent. It's sweet, it's light, it's delicious. This is absolutely something I want to use on my skin when I want to pamper and treat. Effective, repurchase.

The RMS Beauty Raw Coconut Cream can be purchased from Cult Beauty for £12.50 / 70G.

Skyn ICELAND Pure Cloud Cleanser

This Skyn ICELAND Pure Cloud Cleanser is a clay-based cleanser that is incredibly gentle and cooling, helping to softly clear and calm skin. This cleanser always seems to remain cool, rousing skin with an instant hit of refreshment.

While clay-based, this cleanser is always wet, meaning it's perfectly easy to spread while the nice rich texture of the cleanser remains, allowing you to effectively massage the product, keeping your hands well-lubricated. I often use this product for several minutes, giving myself a full facial massage at the mercy of this gentle cleanser.

I supposed I'd refer to myself as an oil girl, meaning this is a cleanser I just wouldn't use for make-up removal. However, for a morning cleanse and a second cleanse, this product is ideal. My delicate skin is cooled, refreshed, cleared and soothed. As to be expected, it smells like clay, giving it a core natural and earthy scent. Effective, don't repurchase.

The Skyn ICELAND Pure Cloud Cleanser can be purchased from Cult Beauty for £22.50 / 5OZ.

Pixi Glow Tonic

The Pixi Glow Tonic has had so much traction, and it's all for good reason. Said to help tone, brighten and exfoliate skin, this 5% glycolic acid toner deserves its praise. But we run into a slight snag here, the active glycolic acid, doesn't really take much effect on my oily skin. That isn't to say this product isn't without its merit as I still used and adored it, but it doesn't offer me the same results as it would other skin types.

To understand more about what acids actually do and which acid is suitable for particular skin types, read Caroline Hiron's The Top 10: Acid Toners and Honesty: How To Tell Which Skincare Acid You Should Be Using

While it isn't necessarily applicable for my oily skin, the Pixi Glow Tonic is a non-astringent, gentle and refreshing acid toner that keeps skin revived and refined. This cult gem has rekindled my love for liquid and acidic toners once more. This tonic offers the ultimate hydration hit, giving my skin instant clarity and refinement.

Helping serums and moisturisers to penetrate deeper and absorb more effectively, this toner has helped to decongest and clear my skin in a completely gentle and non-irritating way, while keeping my skin fresh and hydrated. Effective, repurchase.
The Pixi Glow Tonic can be purchased from Cult Beauty for £18.00 / 250ML.

SkinOwl Eye+ Concentrate

I was one of those unfortunate people to receive one of the affected concentrates that had activated during transit. The hot LA weather had spoiled the active ingredients, turning them far more enzymatic that advisable. Meaning, you guessed it, horrible, horrible burning. But, I didn't let that sour my judgement. I got on the blower to both SkinOwl and Cult Beauty who sent me out a fresh jar straight away, and boy, how I love this little concentrate.

Gelatinous in texture, this ultra light and absorbent gel is the ultimate way to refresh the eye area. SkinOwl Eye+ Concentrate is instantly cooling, helps to balance any kind of discolouration and soothes any irritation. My eyes are instantly revitalised and brightened. My eyes are quite honestly looking bigger and brighter than ever before.

Having a gorgeously fresh cucumber scent (following suit on the age-old tradition of placing cucumbers on the eyes), this potent little gel has helped to smooth out rough, bumpy skin I had under my eyes. I'm talking completely smoothed out. I had, what I referred to as dragon scales under my eyes. It was a rough skin, that I just couldn't seem to shift. Well, I finally found my elixir.

I also suffer with dark circles; these are mostly self-inflicted due to my consistent failure to go to bed early. But now my eyes are brightened, my eyes look lively and awake. I have found what my eyes have been looking for. This jar will take up a permanent residence in my skincare routine. Essential.

The SkinOwl Eye+ Concentrate can be purchased from Cult Beauty for £36.00 / 0.8OZ.

REN Vita Mineral Omega 3 Optimum Skin Serum Oil

The REN Vita Mineral Omega 3 Optimum Skin Serum Oil falls into a unique cross-category of both serum and oil. This clever synergism of consistencies leads to a very rich and thick oil-like texture, providing an instant hit of hydration.

Due to its richness, this lends itself to more of an impermeable serum, meaning, my skin just can't absorb it, so I reserve it strictly for evening use. You can combine it with your moisturiser or use it as an outright serum. It is a little on the greasy side for me, but I really don't mind that when used in a PM routine.

The serum is very refreshing, instantaneously I can feel the revival of my skin. While it is a fairly warm oil, it effectively hydrates skin. In terms of glow and radiance, I've seen nothing of the sort. But I peg this more on my skin type, as I just cannot absorb it. Effective, don't repurchase.

The REN Vita Mineral Omega 3 Optimum Skin Serum Oil can be purchased from Cult Beauty for £25.00 / 30ML. 

Odacité Hydration Serum Concentrate Pomegranate + Rose Geranium

The Odacité Hydration Serum Concentrate Pomegranate + Rose Geranium is another one of those potent oil-serum type hybrids. This truly organic serum is made from nothing but essential oils and essential vitamins, helping to supply skin with all the nutrients it needs to keep well fed.

Being fairly thick, it doesn't absorb well with my skin type, therefore reserved only for PM use. This rich oil is very, very powerful, this is the ultimate skin treat that wraps my skin in a snug barrier of goodness. It's very warming and comforting, providing optimum hydration and protection. 

This little bottle (and we're talking very little and very expensive bottle here) contains a very small dose of the concentrate, as it's so powerful, you really don't need to apply very much at all. The rich texture is very fluid, allowing for a seamless application. The scent is rich and powerful, an all-natural botanical scent. Effective, don't repurchase.

The Odacité Hydration Serum Concentrate Pomegranate + Rose Geranium can be purchased from Cult Beauty for £33.00 / 5ML.

Alpha-H Essential Hydration Cream

This is one of the lightest moisturisers I've ever had my hands on. The Alpha-H Essential Hydration Cream is an ultra lightweight moisturiser that instantly absorbs into skin, providing a cooling and refreshing sensation. This gentle moisturiser disappears instantly, while effectively providing essential hydration and moisture without all the heaviness.

With a near cloud-like consistency, in essence, this moisturiser completely absorbs at first touch. It's light as air to touch and super gentle and lightweight on application. The silky smooth texture allows it to be applied effortlessly.

There is an instant cooling effect when applied. This product seems to remain perpetually cool, helping to amplify that hydration hit. This is one heck of a refreshing moisturiser. The cool, freshness of the product offers an instant revival. It's minty, it's cool, it's fresh, it is essential hydration for skin, for sure. Effective, don't repurchase.

The Alpha-H Essential Hydration Cream can be purchased from Cult Beauty for £35.00 / 50ML.

Pommade Divine Nature's Remedy Balm

The ages-old remedy of Pommade Divine Nature's Remedy Balm is one that has stood the test of time, and for very good reason, too. This golden-brown soft balm is an all-natural medicinal balm designed to cure and repair all manner of physical aliments. Said to cure dry skin, scrapes, cuts, bites, burns, you name it, this little wonder-balm can help soothe it. I used this primarily on eczema, chapped skin and as a therapeutic chest rub. Whatever takes your fancy really!

The gorgeous burnt woody scent of this product is enough alone to make you feel cured. It has an amazing warmness to it, it seems to very delicately heat up during application. The consistency is similar to a soft syrup, it's a super thick product that spreads gorgeously and helps to protect wherever it has been applied.
I used this product mostly for medicinal purposes. I have very sensitive skin and this is careful and gentle enough to be applied to the most delicate of places. I used it under my nose when suffering with a cold as my skin has become insufferably chapped from all the blowing into tissues. This worked a dream at healing the skin and the burnt smell was very welcome indeed. I also use this on cold evenings when I go for a late-night jog. I rub a little on my chest to stop the cold getting on my lungs. This is definitely a wonder-balm that is well-deserving of a place in my cabinet. Essential.

The Pommade Divine Nature's Remedy Balm can be purchased from Cult Beauty for £19.80 / 50ML.

This luxury box of treats has been an incredible investment, introducing me to a number of products that have no become solid staples in my routine.

Being the second of the two boxes released so far, and having heard confirmation that Caroline will be releasing a Christmas box, you'll have to keep an eye on the news for as an when these boxes are announced. You'll have to be quick, as these boxes get snapped up quick (and rightfully so).

Follow Caroline Hiron's blog or subscribe to the Cult Beauty mailing list to stay in the loop for the next box.

I purchased this box myself, meaning all opinions are rightfully my own.

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