Yesterday afternoon, our wheelie bins went a-wandering. It’s that time of year again: the season of unexpected winds snatching up bins and trampolines from unsuspecting back gardens, and of the elements playing havoc with the delicate skin on our faces.
I’ve slowly been getting the hang of treating my skin a little better after years of taking my youthful visage for granted (IDed buying alcopops in Morrisons in my mid-30s, holla), but it seems that’s not enough: we should be cultivating different routines for summer and winter to take into account different seasonal stressors on our skin. Handily enough I was sent some products from the Body Shop’s brand new Oils of Life range – they arrived just as I returned from my holiday, during which I’d gotten back into bad habits of just slicking some moisturiser over the wee sore bits on my cheeks at night and hoping for the best.
The Oils of Life range consists of an essence lotion, facial oil and cream/gel cream, each of which are made with three cold-pressed seed oils known for their revitalising and repairing properties: black cumin seed oil from Egypt, camellia seed oil from China and rosehip seed oil from Chile. It’s a well-traveled combination that makes for a curious scent – one that I wasn’t keen on first time around as I prefer sweeter and citrussy scents and I was convinced my face smelled like curry paste afterwards, but one that I gradually warmed to. “Warmed” being the operative word, actually: it’s a rich, savoury combination that’s perfect for autumn.
After cleansing, I used the Intensely Revitalising Bi-Phase Essence Lotion* (£15) first, soaked into a cotton pad. The Body Shop describe this as “the essential first step after cleansing” so, regardless of its technical accuracy, I’m describing this one as a toner – it certainly feels that way as it refreshes and moisturises the skin. I’ve only just gotten over the fact that you’re supposed to include “serum” somewhere within the “cleanse, tone and moisturise” mantra, so you can stuff anything else on top of that.
I’d been using a morning and evening facial oil before I went on holiday, so it wasn’t any hassle to add the Intensely Revitalising Facial Oil* (£28) to my routine. Although high on the essential oil content, this was a lightweight and non-greasy product that I really enjoyed using and which sank into the skin, drying quickly enough to apply makeup over the top of. I’ve been using the pipette to measure four drops into the palm of my hand and then brushing it onto my face with my fingertips in an upward motion. The product is cheaper than some of its competitors, and will last for absolutely ages.
I’ve been using both the lotion and the oil both morning and night and I suspect I’ll continue to do so – it only takes a couple of extra seconds that even I have in the morning, with the added benefit of feeling as though I’m actually taking a wee bit of time for myself. The Intensely Revitalising Gel Cream* (£25) is definitely a night-time only product for me though, even though it clearly states it can be used for both – I’m lucky enough to only have the smallest patches of dry skin on my face, and I trust my foundation not to rough up my skin too much during the day.
This was my least favourite of the three products: I wasn’t a fan of the texture, although I was given the choice between it and the standard cream so I only had myself to blame. Again, a fortnight’s worth of use has barely made a dent in the tub, so I wouldn’t be surprised if this keeps me going for most of the winter.
Given the timing of my holiday I’ve only had a couple of weeks to try the Oils of Life products, so I’m not convinced you can see much of a difference in the before (above left) and after shots of my makeup-free face above. My skin certainly feels plumper and healthier though, and I’ve been out and about without feeling that horrible freezer burn effect when I come back indoors.
I’m definitely going to spend longer using the products as we get into the winter months, and who knows – I might even grow to love the smell!
You can purchase the Oils of Life range instore and on The Body Shop’s website. Have you ever used any of their skincare products?
DISCLAIMER: This post contains PR samples, but all opinions are honest and unbiased. See my full disclosure policy.