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L’Occitane have a range of hand creams in different sizes and fragrances, the Pivoine Flora being one of them. I had no idea what ‘Pivoine’ was at first, but the blurb on the website fills in a few gaps : ‘Just like a caress of a peony petal, this hand cream enriched with shea butter helps to soften and nourish the skin while enveloping the hands with a green floral scent inspired by a blooming peony.’ The peony extract is apparently from Drôme, France. It sounds quite fancy, but simple when you break it down. I like that there are no complex chemical names and wonder ingredients marketed here. It’s simple, but special.
The tube is silver plastic (for the tester), though I believe the full sized is more metallic. It’s quite sturdy and reminds me a bit of a small toothpaste tube. The design is pretty, yet simple, with a pink colour scheme for the front label that features a pink flower. It looks feminine and whilst the tube seems modern, it has a hint of being traditional or ‘homely’. The tube opens with a black screw top, that’s easy enough to get in to and fastens securely so you can pop it in your bag without any worries of it leaking or accidentally opening.
The first thing I noticed was that the white hand cream inside is quite thick. You can catch a bit of the scent from the tube, that being floral and sweet, but actually I find it more appealing and a tad more noticeable when you’ve actually got it massaged in to your hands.
This absorbs really well; it feels like it’s instantly sinking in, so give it a minute and you’re good to go without any greasiness. My skin feels refreshed, comforted and moisturised, without going overboard.
Only a small blob is needed per application so it’s lasting me quite a while. The cream is quite thick, however I still use it quite sparingly. It is smooth and soft to massage in to hands, so I like the consistency.
The scent is floral and sweet, with an ever so slightly musky undertone that prevents it from being sickeningly sweet or overpowering. The fragrance lasts for long enough but not too long. It’s feminine and fresh.
As for the price, this is where I get a bit deflated. I do think they’re overpriced, but then again, I tend to go for cheap but branded hand creams, where you get more ‘bang for your buck’. None the less, this cream lasts reasonably well, definitely feels lovely on my hands and leaves a pretty scent, and I must admit it feels a bit special to use.
The scent is lovely so I’d be interested to check out the other products in the Pivoine Flora range, of which there are a few, from a lip balm to shower gel and EDT.
I don't usually buy much from L'Occitane as I find some of it quite overpriced and lots of the L'Occitane products I have are things that have been given to me . This hand cream is one which I received from my sister in law last time I was staying with her.
L'Occitane's shea butter hand cream is very well known and highly thought of by a lot of people. I like that one but I often find the other scented hand creams less impressive.
This pivoine flora hand cream comes in a metal tube like the shea butter one, as with most of the L'Occitane hand creams. It has a pink floral design on it to denote the scent, as pictured, and a screw top to open. I am actually not a huge fan of this packaging for a few reasons: firstly I hate getting the smell of metal on my hands, so I prefer having a tube made from plastic. Also the metal tubes don't always hold their shape very well and can easily get bashed and start to look extremely scruffy if I carry it around in my bag a lot. Also the screw top lid is less practical than a flip top, as I then have to screw it back on while my hands are a bit slippery from just putting the cream on. The tube is not awful, but I definitely prefer the packaging of a lot of other hand creams.
The actual hand cream is very strongly scented and I am hit with a wave of floral scent of peonies when I squeeze a little bit out. I find the scent okay in small doses, but I am not crazy about it, and I find it a quite overpowering. It also has a slight plastickiness to the fragrance, making it smell a bit artificial, and I am not too keen on this. I think the scent is maybe more one for older people. After it has been on my hands for a while it can start to really annoy me at times.
The texture of the hand cream is kind of a cross between a lotion and hand cream in my opinion. It is not as rich, thick and creamy as other hand creams I use like the Champneys one or Soap and Glory. It looks paler and thinner, and it feels thinner on the skin. It is very easy to rub in but doesn't absorb immediately on contact with skin, though it does absorb quite quickly and doesn't leave any stickiness or residue. It leaves my hands feeling quite smooth and soft, probably due to the shea butter and grapeseed oil contained, but I don't think this cream moisturises as intensively as other hand creams and it doesn't feel as nourishing.
Overall, at £8.00 for a tiny 30 ml I do think this is overpriced and I wouldn't buy it, as I prefer other hand creams which do the job better, smell nicer and cost less money! If I receive another one for free I might give it to my mum to try, as I not too bothered about it myself, but if I didn't have any other hand cream I would still use it.