For a blog that started being predominantly about beauty, it has been a long time since I have written a beauty post. Two months and nine days to be precise. I don't usually write product reviews either, partly because I prefer sharing a collection of things I enjoy, and partly because it is rare that I find something that I enjoy so much I feel like dedicating it a whole post. Even my beloved Trilogy Rosehip Oil has not had its own post (I've talked about it so much though that there is nothing more to say!).
I hope I've not lead you to believe that this one product will change your life or that you absolutely need it in your bathroom cabinet. Or that I will go into very specific details about every ingredient and what it does, because that is not what you will find in the following paragraphs. I hope you enjoy it all the same.
You see, at this stage of the game in my mid thirties, I don't often get excited about new products, never mind new brands. I am one of those people who had bad skin in my late teens and in my twenties, so I had to get to know it and between that and doing a stint as a beauty buyer I have tried a lot of products in my lifetime. I have found the brands that work for me and the ones that don't, and within those, I am pretty loyal to what I put on my face and my body (You can check my all time skincare favourites post, all of which still stand). However, when I this blog post about Santaverde on Hello Gemma it instantly caught my attention.
I am a lover of natural products. Not just any, but the brands that really take great care in growing the best ingredients and then using them by processing them in ways which preserve their properties to the max. For me Dr Hauschka and Weleda are up there with the best. Their ethics run through everything they do and you can see it. I've never ever been disappointed with any of their products. I first heard about Santaverde in Hello Gemma. She'd visited the finca in Estepona where they grow organic aloe vera, which is the main ingredient of the whole brand. When I read about how it was founded over 25 years ago I felt the same sense that this brand was genuine and that using natural ingredients was much more than a way to be able to make a marketing claim. When you have a founder with skin problems who discovers the property of a plant and makes it her business for over 25 years, you have something built from a true passion and belief, you have someone who will not compromise the quality and who will make it their mission to develop the best products possible. Incidentally, as I write this it reminds me a lot about how Caudalie started off, which is another brand I adore.
I remember I tweeted about this article and someone at Santaverde sent a really nice reply, we got chatting about my skin and concerns and they recommended a whole host of products. But, if they had to use only one thing? Then it would be their Age Protect Toner. This did two things to me: on the one hand it made me really trust them because they knew I was never going to buy 6 products from a brand I had never tried before, but it made me question my own opinion that toners are kind of pointless. Intrigued by it I ordered one a couple of weeks later and have now been using it for over a month.
This is the review bit, which I will make quick because it is not my forte. It really is LOVELY! The toner comes in a glass bottle with a spray. I like this because I hate to waste product on cotton pads. When I first used it I was surprised by the strong smell of aloe vera, which can be quite pungent, but it fades quickly. I love that it has a strong smell, because it means it is packed with aloe vera juice. I didn't notice anything immediately, but the morning after my skin felt really replenished, fresher and more hydrated.
I have said before that you don't need to use a toner, and I still stand by my word. I don't think it is something that is necessary. However, I genuinely like this product and as I have been using it regularly (mostly in the evenings) I have noticed that it is helping my skin in the winter, avoiding dehydration, so I would highly recommend it if you normally use a toner or as a winter treat for your skin if you are of my inclination.
And now I think, if Santaverde has made me like a toner, their other products must be amazing! I am looking forward to buying their age protect moisturiser. They very kindly included a small sample with my order and it was so lovely to use as well.
Whether you are a lover of natural products or not, I would urge you to check them out. They are available from a few online retailers, including Liv, which is where I placed my order.
And there you have it, my very rambly kind of product review. Now you see why I don't write them, ha ha!