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Another Neal's Yard review from me, you can tell that I really like trying their products, and am quite dedicated to the brand. As you can see from the other reviews, some products I have found to be exceptional (Almond Moisturiser) and others not really suitable (Rose Body Cream).
This time around I am reviewing another of my favourites, this time the Rose Formula Anti-Oxidant Facial Mask (bit of a mouthful). This one I was actually given as a gift, so hopefully that makes me look a bit less like an addict(!)
Before the present arrived, a facial mask was not normally something I would have used in my normal skincare routine. I'm not really into spending a lot of time cleansing and I thought that's what a face mask was all about. In the past I have tried lots of different sachets with my sisters, gooey ones that smooth on and turn rubbery to then get peeled off, green exfoliating ones with those little bubbles inside, creamy luxurious ones. None of these ever really made a difference to my skin, or at least not a big enough improvement to spend a lot of time mucking around with them. This product from Neal's Yard really changed my opinion, because it's so easy to use, and it really does cleanse my skin deeply and leave it looking so fresh.
On opening the jar, the facial mask looks like a kind of pink-tinged clay, with an extremely faint smell of rose, and a stronger more medicinal scent that I can't quite name. It contains '53% organically produced agricultural ingredients and 36% natural clay minerals'. The clay base means that it's the perfect consistency to smooth on quickly and cleanly, and I do all my face apart from my eyes. It just sits on the face, so you can go about your business getting ready for bed or whatever, without worrying about gooey green bits dripping off on your clothes.
The instructions say that you can leave it on for up to 10 minutes, but in my experience it starts to harden up, and tighten in about 5. I think that because different people use different thickness of layers, this is a bit variable. I usually use this once a week, before getting into the shower, so I just jump in and shower it all off.
The way it leaves my skin is brilliant - it feels so deeply cleansed. I use my Almond Moisturiser straight away so my skin doesn't dry out. For me, it really helps those areas where oil builds up, especially between the eyebrows and around the bottom of my nose. It helps me keep those areas free of a few small spots that tend to grow there every so often. After doing the facial mask my skin look super smooth and really radiant.
Now the problem - it is so expensive! It's available via the Neal's Yard website (www.nealsyardremedies.com) at a cost of £21.60 for a 50g jar. On my jar, it says that the Face Mask needs to be used within 4 months of opening, so it's quite a big investment for just this 4 month period. I have removed a star because of this. I don't mind paying a premium for a moisturiser but I really do think this is expensive. I buy my Neal's Yard products during their usual twice-yearly sales, one in January and one in the summer.
Ingredients: Kaolin, Aloe vera (Aloe barbadensis) gel, Maple (Acer saccharinum) extract, Soya (Glycine soja) oil, Zinc oxide, Calendula (Calendula officinalis) extract, Alcohol denat / , Macadamia (Macadamia ternifolia) oil+, Gotu kola (Centella asiatica) extract, Rose (Rosa centifolia) extract, Propolis (Propolis cera) extract, Cetearyl olivate, Sorbitan olivate, Phenoxyethanol, Cetyl alcohol, Red clay (Montmorillonite), Corn starch (Zea mays), Bergamot (Citrus bergamia) oil, Rosehip (Rosa canina) oil, Ascorbyl palmitate, Tocopherol, Sunflower (Helianthus annuus) oil, Rose (Rosa centifolia) oil, Geranium (Pelargonium graveolens) oil, Sodium hyaluronate, Cardamom (Elletaria cardamomum) oil, Citral, Citronellol, Eugenol, Farnesol, Geraniol, Limonene, Linalool Organically produced ingredient / +Nut-based ingredient / 58% Organic / A beauty boosting mask for promoting deep skin regeneration / Made with rose flower and wild rose seed extracts / Rose extracts are renowned for their ability to promote skin regeneration, helping reduce the appearance of uneven pigmentation and fine lines / Anti-oxidant sugar maple extract is a natural source of malic acid, which helps to gently clear dead cells to reveal fresh, radiant skin beneath / Vitamin-rich macadamia oil protects against moisture loss and gotu kola extract stimulates collagen production to firm and tone the skin / Benefits: Deep cleansing / Revitalising / Radiance-boosting / Toning and firming / Directions for use: After normal cleansing, apply a thin, even layer of the mask to your clean, dry face, avoiding the eye and mouth area / Allow the mask to remain on the skin for 10 minutes, then rinse with tepid water and pat skin dry / Use the mask once a week or as needed to soothe stressed skin / Use enough to cover the face with a thin, even layer of mask / A teaspoon of the mask should provide enough coverage / Each jar contains enough for 4 to 5 masks /