I wrote recently about the Oskia facial I had at the beginning of July, and mentioned that I was given some products to take away and test out. Having used them for a couple of months now, here are my thoughts on the Micro Exfoliating Balm, Renaissance Mask and Bedtime Beauty Boost.
Micro Exfoliating Balm is a solid balm texture that exfoliates with granules of MSM and silica. The Exfoliating Balm gently removes dry flaky skin, leaving a soft and even complexion behind. This is applied to damp skin and you can control the amount of scrubbiness by adding more or less water; I make sure my cheeks and neck are wetter than my t-zone. What I particularly like is that the MSM and silica granules dissolve as you massage the balm, so it's easy to rinse away with no annoying beads or grittiness left behind.
I don't feel like my skin needs physical and chemical exfoliation at the same time, so I don't use this before using the Renaissance Mask, but on weeks where I just haven't had the time (or have forgotten) to use the Mask, or when my issue is flaky dry skin. Resistant skin that benefits from both types of exfoliation can use the Exfoliating Balm before the Renaissance Mask. I'd recommend the Exfoliating Balm to someone who is more bothered by dry/flaky/rough skin, and the Renaissance Mask for dealing with deeper clogged pores/congestion - regular use of the Exfoliating Balm will help with that, but the Renaissance Mask is better at it, in my experience. The Exfoliating Balm is also good if you want a quick exfoliation - there is no need to leave it on the skin, and it takes two minutes to use.
The Renaissance Mask is the product that I'd recommend if you were only to purchase one product from Oskia, and is the one that I'll be purchasing myself when I finish the sample pot I was given. This is a gentle milk and fruit acid (AHA) mask that dissolves clogs and refreshes the skin, giving a clear and glowing skin after use. The acids are buffered in a glycerin base with the MSM that Oskia is known for, prebiotics and oligosaccharides. The theory behind putting 'nutritional' ingredients in Oskia skincare is that it helps the skin to support itself from the outside too. Of course, it's not going to help if you don't eat well too, but I do think (from an instinctive and personal experience perspective - I'm not a skincare scientist) it does help my skin, particularly in a product like this that exfoliates chemically. The Oskia Renaissance Mask is much more comfortable for me than Dr Sebagh Deep Exfoliating Mask (which is great for strong/resistant/oily skin, but too much on my skin).
The Renaissance Mask is also excellent for dry, overgrown cuticles. Mine grow like weeds (my nails grow quickly, and I think my cuticles just grow with them) and using an oil or moisturiser alone doesn't give me anything like the neat cuticles I see on nail blogs. Adding a couple of dabs of the excess Renaissance Mask to my cuticles while I'm wearing it as a mask on my face has made a big difference though; dissolving the excess dry bits without drying out my nails or the (much neater) cuticle that is left.
Bedtime Beauty Boost is the Oskia night cream. It's a light cream texture that doesn't overload the skin and sinks in well with no greasy or oily residue. There are lots of good skin supporting ingredients in the formula without being too much for a more sensitive skin and this would be a great anti-ageing night cream for anyone who finds that waxier night creams can cause congestion.
This can also be used as a day cream for a drier skin; the formulas of the day and night creams are quite similar, with the night cream being richer and the day cream more fluid. The specific day cream in the range, Nutri-Active Day Cream, does have a yeast ferment ingredient, and Bedtime Beauty Boost has niacinamide, so the formulas aren't identical though.
Oskia have offered a really nice gift with purchase to readers of this blog - if you spend more than £50 on www.oskiaskincare.com and use the code LMG12 (you have to click 'apply to apply it) you will receive a free 15ml travel size of the Bedtime Beauty Boost, worth £24.
Disclosure: samples for review provided by company.