Brand Focus: Caudalie

Caudalie is based around the anti-oxidant properties of grape seed polyphenols and first went on sale in 1995. If you are still unsure as to what an anti-oxidant does, it protects the skin from free radicals and thus slows down the signs of aging. If you are unsure what free radicals do: slice an apple in half, leave one half open to the elements and cover one half in lemon juice. Check back on them half an hour later (in theory) and you will see that the one covered in lemon juice retains its firmness and colour. The exposed apple will be brown and shrinking. That is what free radicals do to your skin.

I first worked with Caudalie about 14 years ago and have used two of their products on a regular basis ever since. The Beauty Elixir has become a staple on my shelf and I am lost without it.

I use it at the toner stage of my routines in the mornings – mainly when my acne rosacea is having a flare-up and nearly always in Summer. It balances containing rosemary, mint and melissa with glycerin and orange blossom and although designed to ‘smooth features, tighten pores, and give the complexion a burst of radiance’ I find that it literally dries up my spots. I can feel it working – in a good way – and my spots are worse when I run out. N.B. Just make sure you CLOSE YOUR EYES when you spray it. Don’t ask.

My other staple is the Nourishing Body Lotion.

Although the Vine Body Butter is newer to the range and richer in texture, this body lotion never fails to disappoint. It smells gorgeous, is not sticky going on, leaves no residue and your skin feels just as hydrated at the end of the day. Love.

In 2006 Caudalie stepped up their game and made the commitment to be free of all of the following: parabens, sodium lauryl sulfate, phthalates, mineral oils, artificial colouring and animal ingredients. Not bad going.

And then last year, they made their move in to the prestige market with the release of Premier Cru, which for the first time contained 3 of their patented ingredients: titrated Resveratrol, Viniferine from grapevines and grape-seed Polyphenols.  Premier Cru was an instant sell-out and won Marie Claire’s Prix de Excellence 2010 leading almost inevitably, to the release of Premier Cru The Eye Cream.

Caudalie say:
This unique combination of the three Caudalie exclusive patents and of the best anti-ageing research make this elixir of youth perform wonders on all signs of ageing: wrinkles, dark circles, puffiness, lack of radiance and firmness, leaving the eyes with a renewed youthfulness. 

Whilst I haven’t been using it long enough to form an absolute opinion, amongst other things – what I am impressed with is that it gives the ‘radiance’ without (from what I can see) using Bismuth Oxychloride. This ingredient is the reason a lot of people can’t use certain eyeshadows/creams or even in some cases, mineral makeup. It is widely used in the industry as a light reflecting particle and a lot of people are allergic to it without knowing – they may experience itchiness or redness and put it down to the product as a whole – not realising it’s that ingredient.
First impressions are that it definitely reduces puffiness, increases firmness and plumps up wrinkles – the dark circles it is still contending with but will update a little further down the line when it has had more time to work its (highly anticipated) magic.

Caudalie is available at SpaceNK, John Lewis and Online at the usual suspects.

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