I fell in love with using a facial oil (and body oils), several years ago. I realised that the ‘extra’ ingredients required to make a cream moisturiser, to give them their texture, to hold the ingredients together and to prevent bacterial growth, things such as emulsifiers, binders and preservatives (even in natural products), weren’t there to benefit my skin, but there because its the only way a cream product can be produced.
My skin has always been a bit problematic (why I became an esthetician in the first place) and I realised that by avoiding these ‘extra’, dare I say unnecessary ingredients my skin looked and felt better. Because a facial oil contains no water, there is no need for emulsifiers and binding agents, bacteria is unable to grow, so no unnecessary preservatives.
But there is more to a facial oil than just that. Oils are rich in beneficial antioxidants, but over time these beneficial plant chemicals can be damaged by age, heat and light becoming oxidised which if used can contribute to free radical damage.
When I first came across the Laurel line, I fell in love pretty quickly, it wasn’t hard to do, there is so much to love, but it was the Serums that first captured my heart. Made from the freshest cold pressed oils to ensure not just potency and safety, but to ensure their efficacy and vibrancy. But Laurels Serums are soo much more than a simple facial oil.
Protecting oils from harvest to bottle is not a common beauty industry practice, but at Laurel it's paramount. Full attention is given to the freshness and potency of the oils, with fresh samples arriving weekly. And here is where the simple facial oil is elevated to a serum.
To these fresh pressed oils, whole plants fresh from local organic farms are steeped and macerated for 3 months releasing potent phytochemical, bioflavonoids, vitamins and minerals in to the oil, producing nutrient dense plant medicine for the skin.
Each Serum has it's own unique blend made up of 10-20 plants in each to directly support specific skin concerns. The Serums are made in the apothecary lab weekly to ensure they are at the height of freshness and therefore active efficacy. They are then lovingly packaged in violet Miron Glass bottles to protect the precious polyphenols and other antioxidants from further light damage.
Below Laurel herself shares with us the incredible wonderfulness that are the Laurel Skin Facial Serums.
1. The Serums are multi-process. They begin as whole fresh herbs arriving to our studio directly from our farmers, and then go through a 3 month maceration process that extracts both oil and water soluble nutrients.
2. Sourcing the best possible oils for our Serums is a constant. Fresh samples from new sources arrive weekly to our studio. It’s not at all uncommon for me to return an oil due to quality control. If there’s a better source, we are always looking to find it!
3. The most common concern at Laurel Skin with oils is potency and freshness. Lipids are sensitive to light and heat. Protecting them from harvest to bottle is not common industry practice. Even ‘cold pressing’ involves friction induced heat, which can make even our strongest sources vulnerable if they aren’t constantly attentive or using proper cooling techniques.
4. All of our Serums are non-comedogenic. We strongly encourage those who rely on the comedogenic scale to NOT do so when it comes to our products. Enzyme activity, microbiome diversity, lipid freshness, and refinement play HUGE roles in whether ingredients are comedogenic, yet they are not at all addressed. It’s about the formula, the source’s entire chemical composition, and the skin – NOT about the oil type.
5. All the essential oils present in our Serums are their for medicinal reasons and are micro-dosed. Unburden Serum contains the lowest quantity to be supportive of even the most reactive skin, while Sun Serum possesses the highest EO content. All our EOs are added for their medicinal properties, not to fragrance our products, and none of them have photosensitising properties.
6. Our Serums are made fresh WEEKLY, and maintain potency for 18 months unopened. They are this stable partly due to our Miron UV protective glass, and partly due to how the combination and network of phytonutrients work to support and strengthen each other.
The most common question we receive about them is how do you choose the right Serum for you? Their ingredients look similar, yet the subtle differences are actually large differences when you have very specific skin concerns.
All of our Serums are paths to healthy skin, but they each have a different set of symptoms they focus on. Here is a brief guide on skin symptoms per Serum:
BALANCE: oily skin, large pores, congested pores, consistent breakouts, whiteheads, blackheads, acne, perioral dermatitis, fine lines, lacklustre skin, lack of firmness
UNBURDEN: reactive skin, broken capillaries, cystic or swollen painful acne, perioral dermatitis, irritations, redness, dry patches or uneven dryness, eczema, puffiness, oedema, stagnation, damaged skin barrier, hyperpigmentation, fine lines, lacklustre skin
SUN: fine lines, thin skin, lacklustre skin, hyperpigmentation, dryness, sun lovers, uneven skin tone, loss of collagen and elasticity, rough texture, moderate inflammation, occasional breakouts
ANTIOXIDANT: fine lines, lacklustre skin, rough skin texture, loss of collagen or elasticity, dryness, moderate hyperpigmentation, moderate acne, moderate inflammation, damaged skin barrier, stagnation, puffiness, thin skin
Our Antioxidant Serum can be the most confusing because it appears to be the least specific. Haven’t we already addressed all those symptoms with the other 3 Serums? Exactly, we have. ‘Normal’ skin can experience all of these skin concerns in any given month! With 31 whole plants containing thousands of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, nutrients, and enzymes the Antioxidant Serum is the most well-rounded form of nutrition for radiant skin health. The other Serums help your skin address those more concentrated specific symptoms to eventually able you to just use Antioxidant Serum. It’s like your skin graduated, and now its only goal is to BE VIBRANT.