I think it’s fair to say that oils are a polarising subject. Those who have oil as part of their daily skincare routine couldn’t imagine life without its pampering care, but the uninitiated tend to be more sceptical, fearing that it may be too heavy for their skin. Well I’m here to get you firmly on board the oil train, because there really is an oil for everyone – it’s just a case of identifying the right one for your skin type.
Never one to take a softly-softly approach, I went straight to the holy grail of skincare oils, Darphin, to build a fully-fledged oil-based routine. From an oily cleanser right the way through to an oily treatment product, I completely transformed my routine to see whether or not I could be converted.
SPOILER: I fell for oil. I fell hard. Darphin oil.
The Deep Cleanse
I adore cleansing balms. There’s nothing more satisfying at the end of a long day than pulling your hair up into a top knot and getting messy with a tactile, melting cleanser. If you don’t have two big black rings around your eyes at the end, you’re not doing it right! This offering from Darphin, the Aromatic Cleansing Balm, is particularly good. It contains a blend of marula oil plus sage, ylang ylang and rosewood essential oils, which have a detoxifying effect whilst softening the skin. It’s pretty perfect for all skin types, but oily skin might find it a touch rich for their tastes.
In its natural state the Aromatic Cleansing Balm is pretty thick. You need the tiniest amount, and it dissolves makeup without much coaxing on your part – there’s no rubbing and tugging here. The more you warm the balm up the oilier it gets, which aids massage and just feels so good on tired and fed up skin in need of stimulation. When you’re done moving things around, dampen your hands and get massaging again, and the oil will turn into a milk. Even though my skin is dry it gets overloaded fairly easily, so I take everything off with a dampened washi cloth at this stage rather than just water – I’d imagine combination to oily types will want to do the same. The result is truly luminous, and skin feels primed and ready for the next stage of your skincare routine.
The SOS Treatment
The Darphin Aromatic Renewing Balm is the product that I wasn’t too sure about when going into this new routine. How would I use it? Do I need the added extra? So I did a little search for some reviews, and I was blown away by how much people love this little tub of balm. In fact, you could say that it’s a bit of an insider secret.
The Aromatic Renewing Balm is created for normal to dry skin types, and uses brilliantly pampering ingredients like chamomile, rose and lavender oils to smooth the skin and promote better nourishment. As my skin is dry I’m prone to bouts of flakiness and tightness, especially around the forehead and nose. This balm is the perfect solution when I have a flare-up, offering a finely tuned balance of radiance enhancement and nourishment that my skin adores. I warm a small amount of the balm between my palms and massage it onto the problem areas before bed about once or twice a week – it not only quickly soothes my skin, but it also keeps that dreaded roughness at bay, meaning that I have a much smoother base for my make-up in the morning.
If you have combination to oily skin, the Darphin Aromatic Purifying Balm is the product for you – it offers the same SOS treatment, but with a wealth of detoxifying oils to ease breakouts.
The Skin Treat
In Darphin’s prestigious stable of essential oils, the 8-Flower Nectar is the crème de la crème of innovation, quality and research. Its raison d’être is nourishment, but its targeted oils also have an effect upon firmness, radiance and fine lines. The 8 flowers in question are Immortelle, Ylang Ylang, Patchouli, Neroli, Rose, Lavender, Jasmine and Iris, opulent ingredients rich in antioxidants that improve the resilience, strength and suppleness of the skin for a more flawless result.
As the most precious oil in Darphin’s essential oil collection, I was really looking forward to lavishing my skin with opulent plant-based goodness. It was a bit of a transition moving from a traditional serum to a rich oil, especially as I was using the almost water-like Darphin Hydraskin Intensive Skin-Hydrating Serum previously, but my skin lapped it up overnight with no hesitation – there wasn’t even any residue in the morning. The texture and plumpness of my skin was markedly different after a week of using this oil; it was softer and its texture seemed finer, as if someone had gone over it with a blurring tool. Darphin offer more economical essential oils in the collection (I particularly like quenching Rose and brightening Jasmine, and oilier skin will love Niaouli), but if you’re looking for next level, luxurious anti-ageing care, the 8-Flower Nectar is such a treat.
If I had to choose just one favourite from the collection, though, it would be this. The Revitalizing Oil is made up of a blend of raspberry seed, evening primrose, rose hip, sunflower seed, argan, jojoba, apricot kernel and sweet almond oils (phew!), resulting in a plump and silky texture that smells out-of-this-world incredible.
To start with I wasn’t quite sure how I’d get enough use of The Revitalizing Oil, especially as I had the ultra lavish 8-Flower Nectar sat on my dressing table. Then about a week after I brought the collection home I suffered with a bout of particularly bad skin, so I added a few drops of the oil to my foundation. My skin looked and felt incredible. I then used the oil on my legs instead of my usual body moisturiser, and the same happened again – my legs looked luminous. Slowly but surely this unassuming bottle of oil has replaced my night moisturiser, my hair serum and my tub of body butter, and I keep on finding new uses for it. On a side note, the pump action bottle is so practical – it makes a huge difference to ease of use, so you find yourself reaching for it more often than you think. I’ll forever repurchase this!
Over to you!
Do you use an oil? If you’d like some recommendations comment below, or tweet me @EscentualEmma and I’ll be more than happy to point you in the right direction!