05 December 2010

New Sanctuary Brightening Facial range: "Oh whoa whoa oh, there was a brightening day"*

If you’ve been checking in on fluff and fripperies of late you’ll know I’ve been just a little obsessed with brightening, radiance boosting skin products. So I was chuffed to spot the new Brightening Facial range by Sanctuary in my local Boots. I picked up two products, the Liz-Earle-alike Brightening Facial Polishing Hot Cloth Cleanser, and the Brightening Facial Radiance Exfoliator. You can see they’re hitting all my current beauty buzzwords, but did they live up to their brightening, illuminating claims?

Sanctuary Brightening Facial Polishing Hot Cloth Cleanser:

I love Liz Earle’s Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser to which, I think it’s fair to say, this Sanctuary product gives more than a nod. When you go up against a much-loved cult classic comparisons are inevitable, so that's exactly what I plan to do now.

I'd been making do with cleansing cream and cotton wool in the run up to the recent Liz Earle Christmas event in Wilde & Green, Milltown. What with one thing and another I couldn’t actually make it along on the night and intended to repurchase online, when I came across the Sanctuary products and decided to try them out instead.

Described as a ‘deep cleanse in one illuminating treatment’, the Sanctuary Polishing Hot Cloth Cleanser comes in a 125 ml white tube with one 100% cotton cloth. (You get 2 muslin cloths – which google confirms is made from cotton – with the Liz Earle cleanser). Like Cleanse & Polish, this Sanctuary cleanser is a thick white cream with a pleasant, essential-oil type aroma. I think that the Liz Earle cleanser is thicker and creamier, and that I prefer the scent, but in the interests of fairness I should point out that I don’t have any on hand right now to compare.

What I do know is that the Sanctuary cleanser doesn’t compare to Liz Earle in the make-up removal stakes. While it's a decent product and comes in a couple of euro cheaper than Liz Earle (about €13 for 125 ml of Sanctuary cleanser in Boots, compared to €15 for 100 ml on the Liz Earle website), it doesn't pack that same balmy cleansing punch as the Liz Earle cream, which seems to dissolve all traces of make-up on the first application. My skin doesn’t feel as thoroughly cleansed and I have been using my Clinique Clarifying Lotion afterwards, which reveals quite a lot of make-up remains on my skin.  When I finish this tube I’m going straight back to the Cleanse & Polish corner, and staying there. Until I can afford to try out some Eve Lom, anyway. 

This brown, granulated gel comes in a clear, 100 ml tube which costs €13.49 at Boots. (It’s worth mentioning that you can use those €7.50 Boots Skincare vouchers on these products, which I did, and which makes them very reasonable indeed). Used 2 to 3 times a week it ‘refines and evens skin tone for a lasting glow’ -- according to the packaging, anyway. It contains apricot granules and grape seed, along with pumpkin, pineapple and papaya extracts and mandarin and lemon essential oils; all these combine to give the product a nice, subtle, fruity smell which gets more pronounced as you massage it into the skin.

After rinsing, my skin does feel smooth and soft with a healthy glow.

While I like this product, the exfoliating granules are a little on the large side for me and I would prefer something a little finer. I’ve previously used the brand’s Youth Boosting Warming Microbrasion Polish which, on balance, would be my preference and which I will probably repurchase. But first I’d like to try out that YSL exfoliator Lynnie recommended over on beaut.ie recently.

So whaddya think? Anyone tried out any of these products and what did you make of 'em?

Post title: Lyric from Weezer, 'Brightening Day'
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