November 25, 2013

Indie Beauty Products

Juliette Récamier, 1805. François Gérard.
 Lalun, Aroma M and Aftelier are makers of exquisite beauty products as well as perfume.

The beauty of these small batch hand made products is that each one is made of the highest quality pure materials,  and no corners have been cut.   They are also fragranced with seductive amounts of natural aromatic essences that have beneficial effects while their scent soothes and enhances the pleasure of the beauty ritual.

What could be better than radiant skin, that feels supple and comfortable and holds perfume like silk velvet?  The face, the hair, the eyes, all glow with health and come into their own when nurtured and cared for with pure natural emollients, fragranced as these all are with floral effects that uplift through the beauty ritual without interfering with the perfumes to come.

Lalun Seasonal Skin Care has converted me to the cleansing oil method.  All the products are calibrated to the four seasons, so now I am using the Winter Rose cleanser combination of light cold pressed oils infused with Rose Damascena, cardamom and rosemary leaf extract, among several other beneficial beautifully simple and elegant things. All the ingredients are certified organic or wild crafted.

The method entails commitment to a little bit of a learning curve, which I find to be well worthwhile.  I recommend the site with a clear detailed explanation for the fullest information and ingredients, but in quick overview, the richly fragrant Winter Rose Toner, is to be sprayed onto two cotton pads before spraying them with the light Winter Rose Cleansing Oil, and then pressing and gently rolling the pads across the skin, then finally tissue off the excess,  to leave the face to breathe through the night with no further moisturizer applied.

Lord Leighton, Light of the Harem
I have dry skin and yet found the remnants of the cleansing oil with its Vitamin E and Rose Geranium and combination of oils and extracts emollient enough.   In the morning, the next step is to press the face with a very warm wrung out wash cloth three times, spraying the face with the fragrant Winter Rose Toner and then applying the dense Winter Rose Moisturizer on the face and neck, massaging into the skin and down over the neck and breasts to stimulate circulation.  This moisturizer has even more high quality fragrant Rose Damascena, and several beneficial oils and extracts including crocus,  fruit butter and honey in a slightly waxy base. It results in a soft satin quality, not shiny or matte, imparting a natural satiny skin sheen that will hold makeup well if you are so inclined.

I noticed an almost immediately greater clarity in my skin since starting to use the method, and an improvement of texture around my eyes which have begun to show signs of wear and tear.  I have read elsewhere that too much moisturizer around the eyes can increase puffiness, so this giving the skin the night as a breather makes sense.    There is also a very slippery eye/lip balm with a faint yet intriguing fragrance for use under makeup or whenever

However,  I would also say for dealing with waterproof eye makeup for those of us of a certain age, I'd perform a quick remove with a pad soaked in a micellar product first which gently lifts it all off on the first try, so there will be less rubbing of the skin around the eyes, then using the toner and the cleansing oil, letting those beneficial elements heal this delicate skin.

I find myself a convert to this method, and admire the quality and beauty of the ingredients.   It may seem counter intuitive but these light oils cleanse refresh and balance the skin on the face even better than sudsing water based products.

The Spring Blossom moisturizer is more slippery than the denser Winter Rose for dry fragile skin, Lavender Summer drier and more astringent and Autumn Gold which is most similar to the texture of a "regular" rich face cream.  The seasonal nature of the method assures that once you use up the product you move on to the next season's fresh set.  Everyone's skin is different, but the thoughtful care and years of research and experience lead me to believe that there are many who will appreciate the effectiveness and find themselves wanting to work their way through every season.

modern Geisha aesthetic
Aroma M has been producing luxuriously fragrant beauty oils, for the past year or so, for the face, hair and now body.  The inspiration is the traditional Japanese methods and materials for smoothing and preserving the skin and hair. The signature is the dominant use of Camellia Oil and an exquisitely fragrant and beneficial blend of Jasmine, Geranium, Frankincense  Neroli and Moroccan Rose oils that combine to give the impression of a sensual yet light white floral.

The Camellia Body/Bath Oil uses several emollient organic oils, especially the Camellia Seed oil of traditional Japanese beauty regimens, and floral essences.  It is to be used in the bath, combined with a cup of milk, or after a shower by itself on the skin while still damp.  The maker believes in taking frequent fully immersive baths to relax and heal the skin and muscles and lift stress from the mind and body, so this product is an aid and ornament to that deep self care ritual.

I have also experienced the beneficial effect of the hair oil, which is the lightest yet most smoothing hair product I have found, especially for those silvering streaks that are lighter and more flyaway and of a different texture than the rest of the hair.  This hair oil blends the different textures of hair together into a smoother whole, bringing out the color without heaviness, while imparting a soft and delightful white floral scent that increases the pleasures of brushing and grooming the skin and hair.

Ourika (her story)
Ylang Face Elixir by Aftelier is the newest version of the Aftelier face elixers and I understand will eventually replace all the others as the favorite and only such product in this highly luxurious line.  The scent of this facial oil is an enormous part of the attraction and value of the beauty care ritual to employ it, as its fully natural dimensional quality is immediately felt.  It is recommended as a night treatment that will soothe the mind as well as the skin, with light and soothing restorative oils that promote skin regeneration such as rice bran, sweet almond, apricot kernel, camellia, grapeseed, squalene, and rose hip seed.  It is meant to work as you sleep through the night, which will allow the time and rest for the beneficial qualities of the fully organic and precious materials to work with the self healing of the body to awake more refreshed and nourished.  This is one way to signal to the sleeping mind and body that it is being well taken care of.

Please go to each product's links above for pricing and ordering samples and full sizes, and you will see that the pricing is comparitively amazing, especially in relation to the quality of the products, which are made directly by artisans putting everything into the ingredients.

Copyright 2013, Lucy Raubertas, All Rights Reserved
Samples received from the artisans.  I have not been compensated for this review, and my opinions are without commercial consideration.
If you have information or rights to further credit to the images, please let me know.


mandy said...

Thanks so much Lucy for including my Organic Ylang Face Elixir in your terrific post!
xo Mandy

Maggie Mahboubian said...

It is such a pleasure to read your gorgeous prose; I am always transported to another time and place. Your thoughts on beauty inspire us all! Thank you.