I love to tread in unfamiliar beauty territory. If there is ever the chance to discover something new and beauty-related, I'm there! It wouldn't matter if I had to oar my way across a river just to sample a rare youth serum or bargain with a man in a foreign language (with the common phrases section of the Lonely Planet guide open in my hand).
I was in Latvia and although strolling around in a shopping center is nothing overly adventurous, there were quite some unfamiliar beauty brands that lined the shelves. I felt my pupils dilate as I rubbed my hands together in greed when I entered the main floor of the shopping center which was covered almost entirely by the beauty department.
What I noticed was the sheer volume of 'natural' products on offer. One of the brands that stood out from the rest was a locally produced company called Madara. The company believes that the skin "has the inherent wisdom and ability to use the necessary active substances from each plant. High levels of active ingredients – such as extracts and oils – from plants harvested in the Baltic regionare included in all products.". I was completely drawn by their simple yet hygienic packaging, and the fact that none of their products contain synthetic preservatives, artificial fragrances or colors. According to their labels, some of the medicinal plants and herbs are even harvested following the lunar phases (I respect that!).
I eagerly tested all their products and narrowed my purchase down to the Madara ecoface Regenerating Cream, which is a night cream designed for all skin types. Bare with me as I copy information about the cream from their website and paste it below :
"Nourishes the skin and revives its radiance and beauty during sleep.
Natural plant and flower anti-oxidants prevent the aging process and the formation of wrinkles. Created with love using jojoba and avocado base oils, cocoa butter, extracts of barley sprouts, tomatoes, hop, algae, plantain, camomile, calendula and sea buckthorn oil, all harvested in the Baltic region, as well as gentle natural enzymes.
Tomato – contains carotenoids, including the red pigment lycopene - one of the most potent anti-oxidants. Carotenoids protect skin from free radicals, slowing down aging processes. Neutralizes UV ray damage of the previous day. Lycopene also has anti-cancer activity. Decreases allergic reactions.
Barley sprout – One of the richest sources of natural vitamins, minerals and amino acids, all of which exhibit powerful antioxidant properties. Destroys toxins harmful to skin and neutralizes free radicals. Has anti-inflammatory and anti-mutagenic properties. Stimulates the healing process, softens skin.
Hop – Delays aging processes thanks to a gentle estragenic activity. Softens and strengthens skin, prevents inflammations.
Sea Buckthorn – rich source of vitamins, especially vitamin E anti-oxidant. Palmitic acid is a natural component of skin, thus softening and enriching skin cells with the necessary substances, promoting skin’s regeneration. A natural UV filter.
Seaweed – Creates skin protective complex and improves skin elasticity. Improves cell metabolism and excess water elimination from body tissues, decreasing swelling.
Plantain – stimulates collagen synthesis. Renews damaged skin cells, creates a protective and moisturizing layer on skin. Aids in eliminating excess water from body tissue, decreasing swelling.
Chamomile – stimulates collagen synthesis. Has anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, calming and cell regenerating properties.
Marigold – has antiseptic properties, treats various skin problems. Destroys free radicals.
Avocado oil – able to deeply penetrate the skin transporting the necessary anti-oxidants and other active substances. Has moisturizing, healing, anti-bacterial, anti-wrinkle properties. Stimulates collagen synthesis, thus delaying aging signs and visibly softening skin. Creates a velvety feel of the skin.
Aqua, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Oil1, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil1, Glycerin (Vegetable)2, Saccharide Isomerate2, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley Germ) Extract, Hippophae Rhamnoides (Seabuckthorn Berry) Extract, Lycopersicum Esculentum (Tomato) Extract, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Butter, Algae Extract, Humulus Lupulus (Hop) Extract, Cetearyl Alcohol, Plantago Major (Plantain Leaf) Extract, Calendula Officinalis (Calendula Flower) Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Camomile Flower) Extract, Glucose, Cetearyl Glucoside, Allantoin2, Glucose Oxidase3, Lactoperoxidase3, Stearic Acid, Citric Acid, Xanthan Gum, Aroma4, Limonene4, Linalool4
1 Certified organic
2 Natural moisturising agents
3 Natural enzymes
4 Ingredients of natural essential oils "
I mean, have you ever seen such a huge list of natural ingredients combined in such an interesting way? Reading this information was already a skincare lesson in itself. You see why I had to get this!
Did it deliver? Well, yes and no. It feels nourishing and proofs itself to be a great moisture-izer to the skin. The hygienic pump bottle delivers a dose of its peach-tint cream enough to cover the entire face and neck. However, I have yet to find out its anti-aging properties as I admittedly have yet to used the cream continuously for more than 3 nights in a row. Why? I blame my keen sense of smell. Every time I apply this cream expecting the usual 'herbal' scent of any common natural product, I get instead a whiff of tomato paste. Call me a spoiled sport if you will but I think I am going to have to let this cream do its magic only on my neck!
Any natural products you want to rave about or share your thoughts on? Please leave them in comments!