Calling all skincare junkies: You need to know about these luxe cult prodz—now available in Canada!

woman applying face cream

I don’t write about skincare all that much here because unlike makeup, or even hair, it’s really, really individual. What works for me might not work for you—and just going back to the subject of me: I test and rotate so many products that it’s almost impossible to definitively say what’s doing what, exactly. (As you know, with any new skincare item, you need to wait at least two, four, maybe six weeks to really give it a chance.)

Which brings me to the Eternal Beauty Editor’s Conundrum: WHICH PRODUCT IS MAKING THE DIFFERENCE?

Honestly, it’s sad that I can’t tell you this, but at this point—after years of collecting so many prodz I need to try—I have skincare ADD. Perhaps part of the reason is that most things don’t “wow” me. (Yes, I know, I don’t give them a chance, but I told you I had ADD.)

But! I’m super-excited to tell you that I’ve just discovered a few things that had me at hello. Really!

Before I get into them, let me just back up a minute if I may. My basic philosophy on skincare—that most of it is internal—hasn’t changed. (In case you’re just joining us, I believe that the condition of your complexion is a direct reflection of what you’re eating/not eating and, of course, how much you’re sleeping. If you haven’t seen the epic cod liver oil post/thread, get thyself over there now. The picture below reflects my love for the stuff.)

Cod liver oil heart300 Calling all skincare junkies: You need to know about these luxe cult prodz—now available in Canada!

Yes, I just posted a cod liver oil heart.

Anyway! What’s new in my skincare routine lately—when I’m not using my Lumixyl to target pigmentation issues—are some very excellent things from Beautyphica, a new Canadian online beauty boutique that specializes in “exceptional brands with exceptional ingredients.”

Translation: they specialize in cult products… and I think we all love a good cult beauty product, right?

Most of the brands are European, and what’s exciting is that we can finally buy them in Canada. The store carries not just skincare but also fragrance, bath & body prodz, suncare and makeup—but obviously skincare is where I want to focus, because I’m a sucker for this stuff. It’s luxurious, plant-based, high-quality… so much more exciting than department or drugstore prodz, yes?

Beautyphica very generously sent me a few of their top picks to try. Just don’t ask me to pinpoint what’s doing what, because I couldn’t resist dabbling in them all at the same time—oops!

Apot.Care Irido-Radiant Micellar Lotion Cleanser

ApotCare Lotion Calling all skincare junkies: You need to know about these luxe cult prodz—now available in Canada!

Apot.Care is based on the principles of opthalmology—basically they want to take what keeps our eyes healthy and transfer those mechanisms to the skin. I think so many of us treat our skins SO harshly—unlike our eyes—so I think this philosophy is kinda neat.

I’m not really sure whether this is a toner, makeup remover or plain old cleanser (you apply it to a damp cotton pad and wipe, not rinse)… but it is aMAZing. It’s super gentle and would be very good for hormonal, sensitive or stressed out skin. The bonus is that it leaves behind a whack of soothing chamomile, cornflower water and protective antioxidants.

Apot.Care Irido-Radiant Intensive Treatment Serum

ApotCare Serum Calling all skincare junkies: You need to know about these luxe cult prodz—now available in Canada!

Oh Em Gee. I heart this so very much. It comes out orange and gives your skin an incredible dewy glow. Which is too bad because you’re supposed to only use it once a week as a treatment for stressed-out, ruddy, pigmented skin and wear it overnight. If I tell you the price, you will probably fall off your chair (it’s $260)… but there’s something about this one I like zillions of times more than the other pricey department store creams I’ve encountered. It makes me want to take on the world.

Aïny Nourishing Radiance Serum

Ainy Serum Calling all skincare junkies: You need to know about these luxe cult prodz—now available in Canada!

I am so happy to have discovered Aïny because it’s one of those (maybe the best?) eco-luxe lines that is both certified organic and chock full of gorgeous botanicals that smell sooooo good. (And, I think, are better for your skin than chemicals.)

This serum really isn’t a serum but a face oil, and it’s meant to protect, soothe and repair skin that’s been attacked by sun exposure or harsh winter weather. I would only use this at night—when you wake up, your skin feels all plump and soft and moisturized. I just hope mine lasts through February!

Aïny Luxuriant Regenerating Cream

Ainy Immortelle Beaute Calling all skincare junkies: You need to know about these luxe cult prodz—now available in Canada!

You’re supposed to use this moisturizer on top of the serum—although I don’t always—day or night. Like the oil, the scent is Out Of This World.

The final product I actually have not tried yet…

Ella Kare Glow Serum

Elle Kare Serum Calling all skincare junkies: You need to know about these luxe cult prodz—now available in Canada!

… and the reason is because it’s a two-part treatment: for the first 15 days it dispenses “phase one” (which removes dead cells and impurities) and then automatically “phase two” (which delivers luminosity) will come out. Someday I’ll do it, but with my ADD I can’t commit just yet! It does sound lovely, though. No wonder those French girls have such gorgeous skin.

So…

Have you tried any of these brands?
Are you into cult beauty/skincare prodz?
Anything you’re using on your face lately that’s doing a good job? Tell me tell me tell me!

15 Comments

Jane
Wednesday, November 3/2010 at 3:33 pm

The Ainy line is intriguing, I love using an oil at night. And who doesn’t want to wake up to glowing skin? That’s how the Kiehl’s makes me feel….

Have you tried Exuberance Beauty for luxe/organic? They are an Ottawa based skincare company…breaking out slowly, at several Bay counters now I think?

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Saturday, November 6/2010 at 2:16 pm

Oooh I haven’t heard of that line but will check it out next time I’m at the Bay. LOVE discovering new organic stuff and luxe even better!

So many beauty eds have raved about the Kiehl’s oil so not surprised you’re loving it too! I guess the main difference with the Ainy serum is that it’s a rich amber colour and the scent is even stronger (in a good, botanical way). I haven’t used either one long enough to notice a difference in results though…

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Melissa
Wednesday, November 3/2010 at 4:29 pm

I also love to test out a variety of products, and don’t tend to have the patience to give something more than a week. That being said, I also have extremely sensitive skin and get migraines from fragrances that are too strong (usually in the floral family of scents). Do these products have a strong scent? If not, I might give them a whirl!

I also feel I should mention the line that has stood true and strong for me is Dermalogica. I am addicted to the new UltraCalming line! If anyone else suffers from sensitized skin, I would def recommend trying these products out.

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Saturday, November 6/2010 at 2:19 pm

The scents aren’t super strong but I doubt you would have a problem with them because they’re botanical…not synthetic. Probably your migraines/sensitivity is caused by the synthetic chemicals – I have a problem with that too. Not migraines but with most mainstream fragrances… they make me sneeze as soon as I spray them. Anything I’ve used that is organic, plant oils etc never does that so I think these should be ok.

And yes – the Ultra Calming range from Dermalogica is so good! I think they just added a few new things to that line…have heard very good things!

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Monica
Thursday, November 4/2010 at 1:22 pm

Those products look LUX! Haven’t tried or heard of any of the products, however, most recently I purchased TVAL’s Olive Oil Serum (basically a oil) & am loving it as the weather is getting colder.

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Saturday, November 6/2010 at 2:20 pm

Cool – just looked that up, never heard of Tval. I love that it contains sea buckthorn – I’m a huge fan of the Weleda sea buckthorn line…

I used to be so afraid of face oils but now I think they are just the best!

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Gimped
Thursday, November 4/2010 at 4:15 pm

Can you explain the importance of a serum? Why I would want/need to use one? I’ve been hearing a lot about them and I’m not sure why I would need to use one.

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Saturday, November 6/2010 at 2:26 pm

Great question Gimped! I just did a search on the site as I could’ve SWORN I did a post on this but I haven’t. Just this which sort of answers your question a little bit. I’ll make a note to do a post on this… basically I think EVERYONE needs a serum. They’re very potent and deliver ingredients deep into your skin… in a way moisturizers just can’t do. And they can address all different concerns – pigmentation, aging, radiance, etc. Probably the best is Skinceuticals CE Ferulic.

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Kat
Monday, November 8/2010 at 8:09 pm

Aïny’s products made me laugh out loud.. “plantes sacrées” (sacred plants for the non-francophiles)!? Perhaps their marketing strategy involves miracles, but with that price tag, those plants better be “sacred” by God himself! :P

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, November 17/2010 at 12:20 am

Yes you’ve gotta love the French. So dramatic!
But I have to hand it to them… I do think the serum is divine. It makes me happy every time I use it. If you like botanical scents you would love.

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Jane
Tuesday, November 9/2010 at 9:36 am

Michelle- where can I purchase Ainy products in Canada? Thanks :)

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lauren
Sunday, November 14/2010 at 9:50 pm

Hi Jane!

In Canada, you can purchase the entire range of Ainy products exclusively on http://www.beautyphica.com

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Wednesday, November 17/2010 at 12:19 am

You beat me to it – thanks Lauren!

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Joanna
Wednesday, December 15/2010 at 5:21 pm

I use both products from Aïny and for Christmas every woman in the family is transitioning because I can’t keep it for myself :))))

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Comment Avatar Michelle Villett
Thursday, December 23/2010 at 10:09 am

Awesome! So glad to find another Ainy lover!

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