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I'm one of these people that always opts for the lower luggage allowance when going on holiday in an attempt to save something like £10. The downside to this of course is that I have to cram things into a smaller case in an attempt for it to weigh less than 15kg when checking in. It always seems such a good idea at the time of booking but then I nearly always regret it and end up having a sleepless night the night before I go due to stressing about it! Last year was no different and I foolishly opted for the lower luggage allowance once again. However on a previous holiday I'd noticed that I was taking unnecessarily large amounts of skincare and hair care products with me so I decided to invest in a kit that contained everything I'd need yet in smaller bottles so I could effectively throw it out before returning. As I had a voucher to use for a website called Look Fantastic I decided to buy something from them and came across a Dermalogica Skin Kit which contained everything I'd need for my weeks holiday.
Dermalogica was set up in 1986 by a lady called Jane Wurwand based on the belief that skincare products should focus on skin health rather than beauty. She aimed to create a product line that was free of common irritants and ingredients that could often cause breakouts but merely improved skin condition and health. It was one of the first brands to focus on skin as a health issue rather than a cosmetic issue and this meant it received great recognition. The brand also steers clear of animal testing and is now the number one choice of skin care professionals worldwide making it... well... famous really! They're a bit like Clinique in that they recommend you have a consultation with one of their professionals before using their products, that's because they make several versions of the same product so that they can give you one which suits your skin the best. They aim to "decode" the different "zones" on your face and therefore tailor their products to what will suit you best, it all sounds rather fancy but I always tend to buy mine online.
I selected the Skin Kit for Normal / Dry skin; they also offer the same kit for dry, sensitive, normal / oily and oily skin with the exact same products. The Skin Kit contains a Multi-Active Toner (50ml), a Skin Smoothing Cream (22ml), a Gentle Cream Exfoliant (10ml), a Special Cleansing Gel (50ml) and a Climate Control Lip Treatment (4.5g). The products come in a dark grey toiletry bag which has a mesh front so you can clearly see what the bag contains. It's quite a handy little size and since finishing all the products I've found it doubles up well as a make up bag! All the products are very similar in terms of their packaging; they retain the rather clinical and plain Dermalogica look. They all come in an off white bottle or tube with a dark grey lid which seems to be standard really, the only one which is slightly different is the lip treatment which comes in a cream tube with a frosted plastic lid. Overall they look quite smart but hardly as elegant or exclusive as some skincare brands; the packaging is purely functional rather than attractive.
The Multi-Active Toner is a bit like a hydrating spray for your face and is ideal for use on a plane or for extreme weather conditions. It's a clear liquid with a very light clinical scent to it and it's dispensed in a spritz, identical to a perfume really. It contains skin repairing aloe, moisture binding humectants, soothing lavender, balm mint and arnica. It should be applied directly after cleansing to a clean face or, if you prefer, you can spray it onto a cotton wool pad and gently wipe it over your skin. It can also be applied when you feel your skin is dehydrated as a way to give it an instant moisture boost. To apply it you simply hold the bottle upright about four or five inches from your face and then spritz it, ensuring it covers all areas of your skin. The effect is instantly cooling and it certainly refreshed my face instantly, after cleansing it took away the tightness that cleansing and washing can sometimes promote. I also used it on the plane and found it soaks in quite quickly and doesn't really affect your make up at all or make skin greasy.
The Skin Smoothing Cream comes in a small, upright tube and is basically a moisturising cream. It's white in colour and quite standard in terms of consistency for a face cream, it has a very light clinical scent to it again which is quite pleasant and I also sometimes can a waft of cucumber and mint too. It contains lecithin and aloe gel which will help to moisturise your skin while cucumber and arnica help to hydrate your skin and keep it soothed as well. It also contains antioxidants and vitamins too meaning it's a bit like a healthy boost for your skin. It suggests it will smooth any dehydration lines and relieve any tightness too from your skin. It's recommended that you use it twice a day, after cleansing and toning ideally. I find it's really easy to apply, simply rub it gently into your skin using upward strokes and then let it soak in. It's quite cooling on my skin and seems to soak in quickly meaning make up can then be applied; it also doesn't leave any greasy residue or anything. It made my skin feel really moisturised and soft throughout my holiday.
The Gentle Cream Exfoliant comes in a small, upright tube which is very similar to the cream's packaging. The exfoliant is white again in colour, they clearly like to keep their colours quite bland, it has a slight scent to it which is quite reminiscent of the other products although there's more of a fragrance to this one. It contains fruit enzymes which help to detach dead skin cells from your face and therefore help to stimulate skin renewal too. It's a non-abrasive treatment meaning it won't harm your skin in any way and it even contains botanical extracts and humectants which will soothe your skin and help moisturise it too. To use it you need to cleanse your face first before applying a thin layer, avoiding the eye area of course. The first time I did appear a mild stinging which I put down to the fact my skin had been in the sun all day although this is apparently normal! They suggest you leave it on for ten minutes and then rinse; it left my skin feeling really fresh, healthy and soft. It's recommended that you use it once or twice a week.
The Special Cleaning Gel comes in a small bottle and is quite similar to other cleansers I've used. It's is clear in colour, like a thin gel in terms of consistency and has a very light scent to it again which probably smells the most clinical of all of them although it does have a mint scent to it. It contains anti-inflammatory balm mint which was ideal when I got a little sun burnt as I found it really soothing as well as lavender and various other ingredients which cleanse toxins from your skin. It's fragrance free and soap free too. What surprised me was that it's actually a foaming cleanser meaning that to use it you need to dispense a small amount in your damp hand (about a pea sized amount seemed to do me fine) and then gently work the gel into a lather. Prior to doing this it recommends that you wet your face and then you can simply wash it with the lathered gel and rinse as you normally would. It left my face feeling really clean and fresh but I didn't experience any dryness or tightness which I often do after washing with other cleansers.
The Climate Control Lip Treatment was probably my favourite product in the set and one that I've since bought again as I liked it so much. It comes in your standard twist style package, similar to Lip Salves and Nivea lip balms. It's recommended for the harsh cold or intense indoor dryness although I've since used it throughout the year. It protects lips from chapping, from dryness and from redness by using shea butter, oat extract and vitamin E which are all meant to act as an environmental shield in a way. It's really easy to apply and you can certainly smell the shea butter in it, it goes onto my lips clear and instantly makes them feel moisturised. It doesn't leave my lips sticky or anything like that although I can sense it on them for a good hour until it has fully absorbed. I tended to use it about three or four times a day while on holiday and it protected them from burning or drying out in the heat. I've since kept up this routine really and have found it be one of the best lip balms I've come across on the market today, full marks!
This set will set you back £16.96 on the Look Fantastic site although it's recommended retail price is higher at £21.20. I personally think the set it well worth it, each product works out at around £3.40 which to me seems quite reasonable considering I only wanted travel sized amounts to take away. Obviously it would be more economical to buy normal sized bottles of others brands although that would have left me in a bit of a mess when it came to weighing my baggage. Personally I would buy this again and I would recommend it, I ended up bringing all the products back home with me as I hadn't used them all - the lip balm lasted me until November for example! This would easily last two one week holidays or a fortnight's holiday so I reckon it is quite good value. Since buying this kit I've obviously bought the lip balm again and I've also bought the exfoliant too. I would fully recommend all the products and if it wasn't for their relatively high price tags I'd buy and use all five of them regularly. A great travel sized kit or a great trial kit!
Thanks for reading.