Image Courtesy of Me!
Recently, I've given you reviews for Clarins' Vital Light Day Cream and Beauty Flash Balm, both of which I am loving. I've also talked about how with winter here in the South giving us temperatures in the teens and 20's on a regular basis, my skin is very, very unhappy. Being deathly pale, it really shows up when my skin acts up. It's bad enough to deal with tight skin and flakies, but it's the redness that I really can't deal with. When I get red cheeks, people think I have a fever. And let me tell you, nothing improves the self esteem like being asked, "Are you sick? You don't look very good!" 40 times a day. So a couple of months ago I went on a quest to find something that would heal my skin, soothe my dryness, and calm all that stinkin' redness down. My skin needed something different.
Clarins Huile Santal Face Treatment Oil
Clarins Huile Santal Face Treatment Oil
Huile Santal is one of Clarins' more old-school products...I remember using it way back in the early 90's when I sold cosmetics and skin care myself. Back then, I used the Lotus Oil for combination skins, but as I've grown older my skin has grown drier each year, and this year when I rediscovered the Face Treatment Oils at the Clarins counter, it was time for Santal, which is marketed to dry and extremely dry skin.
Huile Santal, as you can see in the picture above, is a clear yellow face oil. The scent, to me, is absolutely intoxicating. This particular oil has essential oils of cardamom, sandalwood, and lavender, which are reputed to help decongest the skin, ease redness and discomfort, and calm the skin. Hazelnut oil is also a beneficial part of the formula as it is very rich and hydrating to the skin. The SA at the Clarins counter assured me that she uses this product and told me that it's a miracle product for skin like mine. She said it would help things settle down right away. And, being the optimistic skin care junkie that I am, I decided I MUST have it.
To use Huile Santal, just pour a few drops ( and I mean 2-3...otherwise, you will just end up greasy, without any additional benefits to your skin) into your hand, warm by rubbing your hands together, and then apply using the Clarins method, which is to press it into the skin rather than rubbing. I'm still not completely sure why this method is supposed to be so much more beneficial than rubbing. My guess is that it keeps you from stretching out all that delicate skin by pulling it this way and that. I also find that when I press my skin care into my skin, I use less of it...so now I use this method for all my lotions, creams, and potions. However, I'm not sure that there is really a hard-and-fast rule or even a valid reason for this application method. I'm just telling you what they told me to do. :)
Please be alerted that this oil is NOT packaged with a pump, which is a huge pain in the ass. And by huge, I mean HUGE. Nearly every time I use this, I end up pouring too much product into my hand and it goes down the drain as it drips between my fingers. Sends me into a cussing fit nearly every time. It would be absolutely amazing if Clarins would get a clue about the packaging of this stuff and just add a pump...or at least a spout or something. The medium-sized hole in the lid just doesn't cut it.
Anyhow, enough of that rant, and back to the Huile Santal. Generally speaking, this is a great addition to my skin care routine. I only use it on an as-needed basis, but that's been pretty frequently since I bought it. I do not use the oil on its own, but use it sparingly underneath my night cream when I am having specific troubles. I especially like to use it when my skin is taut, dry and red from being inside all day in the dry heat, which means there are weeks when I use it every day during the winter. With only 2-3 drops, the redness that tends to appear in my skin calms quickly and is completely gone by the morning. The dry, itchy irritation I feel by the end of the day is soothed and alleviated almost immediately. I find that when I get home from a long day at work and have an irritated face, I literally run to the bathroom to wash my face and apply this oil for its immediate relief. I also love the fact that it takes such a tiny amount to achieve an effect. And despite the wastefulness of the packaging, the picture above is of a bottle that has been used consistently for more than 2 months.
This may not be a NEED for everyone, but I would definitely put it on the "seriously consider adding" list. It's a great addition to my ritual each night...every part of the application is pleasant, from the amazing natural herbal fragrance to the immediate softening and soothing of the oil itself, and definitely on to the calmed, refreshed skin I have in the morning. I do highly recommend as a winter adjunct to your program.