The weather has turned COLD. The wind over the last couple of weeks has played havoc with the skin on my face. It's irritatingly dry, not so people notice but going out in the wind makes my face feel sore and chapped. A good lip balm has sorted the dry skin of my lips and mooching in Boots a couple of weeks ago I spotted a huge display of a range specifically designed to help combat dry skin. The range was Eucerin, I'd received a few sample sachets of skin cream from them in the past and had been pretty impressed so I took a chance on their Dry Skin Relief Face Wash. A plus point is the fact that I could use the face wash for my four year old as she is really pale and suffers with dry skin a lot of the time unless I keep her well moisturised with Johnsons Moisturising Cream. Most of the Eucerin range is suitable for children aged 3 and above but make sure you check the individual items before using them on your kids.
You'll know the range by the boring packaging. For a fairly pricey item it looks downright 'no frills', the plastic bottle it comes in is predominantly white and just looks clinical. It doesn't make any pretentious claims on the bottle, simply telling you what it is and what it can apparently do for you. The navy blue lid just completes the really dull look making the the bottle look like something you get on prescription!
But let's face it, when you buy stuff for dry skin you're not buying it for the bottle. You're buying it to help with a problem so the main consideration should be is it going to work. This face wash contains 5% urea, which is a natural moisturiser. Now, apparently when you've got dry skin your natural urea levels are reduced and this in turn makes your skin more prone to dry out more. Swings and roundabouts. So it makes sense to use a product which contains urea to help you replace at least part of your lost natural moisturiser and therefore combat the dryness. In theory. The urea used in this face wash is produced from inorganic substances so rest assured, as nasty as the word *urea* sounds it hasn't come from either animal or human matter.
To use the face wash simply wet your face with warm water and gently rub a small amount of the liquid into a lather. Well, it says use a small amount but for reasons I'll go into in a moment I find I have to use a fairly good squirt for each wash. When you rinse your face you must make sure you rinse it off thoroughly, if you leave any trace of the wash on your face it'll make you itch. The first couple of times I used it I wasn't too careful about rinsing it off, big mistake. Over the day I felt the skin tighten on my face, a horrible little irritating itch developed around my jawline and even rinsing again didn't get rid of the sensation. When Alice didn't complain that her skin felt funny and she wasn't itching I realised this was because I used the face wash on her in the bath so she got a thorough rinsing, I started rinsing properly and immediately felt a difference.
The entire Dry Skin range is fragrance free making it suitable even for people with very sensitive skin, the wash can also be used on any dry patches you might have on your body. Be careful near your eyes. It hasn't happened (yet) but I can just imagine how much this stuff would sting. When I wash Alices face I only use a very small amount on her cheeks and forehead so it goes nowhere near her eyes, the thing is this stuff is sticky. The wash itself is a thick gloopy liquid, nothing like any face wash I've used before. Compared to the RoC fash wash I've been using recently the texture of this Eucerin is vile, rather than a creamy liquid this is more of a sticky gel. This is where the directions on the bottle are deceiving, a small amount of this wash won't be enough to lather because due to the stickiness the wash just sort of clumps on your skin and spreads really unevenly. I find a good squirt of the squeezy bottle is the least you need to get a good enough lather to thoroughly cleanse your face. It'll take a few attempts but you'll soon suss out how much you need and you'll get into a rhythm for massaging the wash into a lather effectively.
It doesn't lather much anyway and as you wash you feel your skin tightening. After rinsing the tightness goes away gradually leaving my skin a bit shiny for a while, this is actually a good time to slap your foundation on because your skin has tightened a little bit and it leaves you with a smooth base for your make up. The shine goes in about an hour (the tightness has faded by then) and my skin feels more moistured and definitely refreshed, the redness caused by the dryness has gone and my face looks less 'pinched'. This isn't a miracle transformation by any means, I've been using the wash for around three weeks now morning and night and only in the last few days have I noticed a marked inprovement. But it's an improvement and that's good. I've been using the wash on a patch of excema on my arm in conjunction with a steroid cream from the doctor and the cream has calmed the excema down while the wash seems to have given my skin that extra little bit of moisturisation to stop it flaring up again.
Alice had a brilliant reaction to the wash. Because of the dryness of her skin I have to bath her every night and smother her in moisturing cream, especially in winter. I started washing her with the Eucerin in the bath, because of the gloopy texture the wash would hold together under the water on her special bath mitt to thoroughly clease her body. Almost from the first time I used the wash on her I noticed an improvement in the appearance of her skin. She didn't obviously have dry skin and it's never been so bad that it's cracked but her skin had a rough texture to it (especially on her cheeks), not the baby soft skin a four year old should have. After using the wash her skin was smoother and less chapped on her face, I still used the moisturising cream on her body and also noticed her skin was more flexible and rosier looking.
Costing £6.95 for a 200ml bottle from Boots and various supermarkets it's slightly more expensive than my usual RoC which costs around a fiver. But I've got to say it's worth it. Once you get past the horrible feeling of rubbing this sticky gel stuff into your face it actually works. It's suitable for dry, very dry and excema prone skin and really makes a difference to both the appearance and feeling of my skin in a relatively short time. Not convinced? Have a look at Eucerins website, it's as clinical as the packaging but full of interesting skin care information as well as a complete explanation of what urea is and does. Also request a free sample and you'll find you get sachets here and there in the post for months afterwards, in my little sachet basket in the bathroom I must have tasters of every product in the Eucerin range by now! http://www.eucerin.co.uk/index.html