Part of me wanted to title this article “my new favorite beauty product.” But I didn’t want to risk sounding deceptive, or to make it seem as though I’ve been commissioned by Caudalie to tout their product. (I never intend to be, and haven’t.)
However, after finally getting around to giving their cult-status Beauty Elixir a whirl, I’ve added another product to my heavily edited list of everyday musts. I love it so much I’ve even gotten my husband into it, and believe me, I could never sell him on an extra skin care step unless a) I’m really passionate about it and b) there’s some sort of immediate payoff. Which explains how he’s both an eye cream snob (YonKa Phyto Contour or bust) and a sunscreen-phobe. A sip of wine, a sip of water, am I right?
But anyway, why should you be convinced to spritz an aromatic mist on your face? According to Sephora, Caudalie’s Beauty Elixir is formulated to smooth the skin, tighten pores, and deliver “an instant burst of radiance, as it stimulates microcirculation.” (Note the italics, which denote what can be identified as marketing speak. Because it’s nearly impossible to lend concrete substantiation to these claims, the language states that the product is designed to carry them out, not that it will, per se.)
What I’m getting at is that I don’t use this stuff hoping for some sort of miracle; I know it’s not going to change my skin. Here are three things it does do.
- FOSTERS A GLOW. You know the scenario: it’s one of those Monday mornings, you wish it wasn’t, you’re moving slowly … and it’s all showing on your face. If you’re me, you splash some very cold water on your face, you do a mini-facial by way of your favorite cleanser and the Clarisonic brush, you rinse with more cold water, and then you mist Beauty Elixir all over your face before getting in the shower. (Sometimes, after the shower instead. Sometimes, both before and) The one-two punch of peppermint and rosemary oils not only makes for a nice natural astringent, but provides an energy boost and lends moisture to dull, dry skin.
- SETS MY MAKEUP. When I wear a full face of makeup, I like to set it with an HD Powder. And even though the whole point of those is to get rid of shine without any powdery chalkiness, they still create a more flawless look when followed by a mist such as this one.
- REJUVENATES AND RELAXES. For the transition from afternoon at the office to happy hour, it’s not like I want to take a shower and start from scratch, but I do want to feel refreshed, which is where another spritz of this stuff comes in. Before bed, when it’s time to step away from any screens and attempt total relaxation, a quick spritz after my evening products helps me want to fall asleep, because it smells like a day at the spa.
Here are things it doesn’t do:
- SHRINK MY PORES. An astringent—something that accounts for one-half of this product’s identity—can’t shrink pores. Nothing is really going to reduce the size of your pores. (Sorry.)
- REDUCE WRINKLES. Repeat after me: there are no miracles that happen as a result of topical skin care products. Because a properly hydrated complexion always looks prettier and more supple than skin that’s parched, this and other elixir mists actually can bring about a visual, if temporary, improvement. Sorry, but they won’t smooth out crow’s feet.
- PREVENT/CORRECT DAMAGE IN ANY WAY. If I’m not making myself clear, the idea of an elixir is not to replace traditional treatment products, like retinols and antioxidant serums. That’s not the point! The point is that it’s a feel-good treat you’re almost sure to love, because it smells great and might make your face more radiant/healthy looking. It’s not a laser treatment.
The bottom line? You don’t need a beauty elixir. But you might be a lot happier with your beauty routine if you start using one. I am!