The best things happen when you least expect them.
You see, I wasn’t even in the market for a new cleanser, toner, serum, or moisturizer. I’ve been blissfully happy with The Body Shop and Lush for years now, using a combo of vitamin C, vitamin E, tea tree, and other apparently fragrance-infused concoctions like Sleepy cream.
I was on vacation and before leaving, I stocked my bag with what I once considered winter beauty essentials: a luscious night cream, 48hour intense moisturizer, Drops of Youth… Products I originally bought because they work, yes, but more importantly because I thought they were better for me and the environment. Apparently, they’re not—or at least that’s what I learned when I downloaded the THINK DIRTY app.
You can read about my reaction to the THINK DIRTY app here, but for now, all you need to know is the app red-marked most of my “natural” products solid eights out of tens for toxicity.
As I continued to search through the ever-growing database, I became increasingly frustrated with companies I thought
I wondered how other women would feel if they knew they were being greenwashed and charged a premium for products that smell a little too good to be true.
I decided to get some fresh air, and that’s when I stumbled upon a Living Libations display in an eco-store called Sustain in Huntsville, Ontario. I’d never heard of this company or its products, but quickly grew intrigued by the shopkeep’s raving review.
Insider shopkeep secrets
The shopkeep had healthy, youthful skin and a palatable enthusiasm. He said his name was Julian and that he’s personally been using the seabuckthorn serum as his exclusive cleanser and moisturizer for about a year. He told me a 100ml bottle lasts a full four seasons and his skin has never been so balanced. His friends constantly ask how he smells so good, and I believe him as he opened the tester bottle.
“Just one or two pumps,” he said while explaining how the seabuckthorn helps reduce the look of fine lines. He pumped some onto my palm and I immediately wanted more.
“So this one product could potentially replace several others in my beauty routine?” I was thinking of my lineup of rated-8 skin care products and the potential savings. Julian confirmed, continuing to tell me this is the most popular skin care product they sell and I should check out the over 600 positive reviews on the Living Libations’ site.
I’m sucked in by the natural, earthy-sweet smell of the luxurious-feeling serum, but am still slightly skeptical. Replacing several products is a tall order for one serum.
I purchase a smaller 30ml bottle for a reasonable $22.
But I wonder…
Can it really be used to cleanse and moisturize?
Will it clog my pores?
Why have I never heard of seabuckthorn?
Is it in the THINK DIRTY app? (It’s not, yet.)
First use thoughts
At first, I can’t remember what Julian said about how to use this product properly, so I check the official website.
It’s simple: wet a cloth, add your serum to the cloth, use the cloth to massage the serum into your skin and wipe clean at once. Reapply a little if you need more moisture.
I use two pumps, wondering if this bottle will last as long as claimed, and enjoying the smell as I massage the serum into my dry, winter-hating skin.
It leaves a feeling of natural cleanliness and a scent that my partner definitely approves of (and he can be finicky). My dry skin is soaked in nourishing oil that, again, I hope won’t clog my pores.
I like it, but I’m skeptical about changing my skincare routine: cleanser, toner, serum, moisturizer. It feels like I’m skipping steps, and I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not, yet.
After several days
It’s been three days. I’ll admit I did exfoliate with a tea tree scrub from The Body Shop once. Other than that, my skin has been exclusively seeing this serum, and so far so good!
I actually had a few beginning signs of a breakout (yes, at 29 I still get monthly breakouts), but I used the serum on top and it stopped the inflammation and completely erased the redness. I’m also currently suffering from weather-related dry skin and the serum is definitely restoring moisture.
Each morning, waking up to my dry face, I do the cleansing and moisturizing with this serum. It leaves my skin looking fresh and hydrated all day.
I wonder if I’ll soon be waking up to more balanced skin, but only time will tell.
After two weeks
My skin looks youthful and feels clean—like really clean. I haven’t had any dry skin patches in the morning or any stress breakouts. Plus, I’m still loving the smell.
I’ve begun using the serum on my neck and chest as well. It doubles as a moisturizer and natural fragrance.
It’s definitely not going to last me six months, but I don’t even mind because it’s actually reasonably priced and feels luxurious.
After one month
I’m hooked. My skin is breakout-free and feels super soft. Right after using the serum, my skin smells amazing and glows as if I’m well-rested and relaxed (neither of which are true).
I’m using it morning and night, with some moisture touch-ups throughout the day. I’ve started using it as a quick hand and tattoo moisturizer, too. My only complaint is that this bottle will definitely not last as long as I was told, but that’s likely because I’m using it so much. I’m ordering more.
more reasons to fall for Living Libations products:
- Reef safe
- Organic &
- Beyond fair trade
Cover image credit: Facebook | Living Libations