Winter skin concerns: dehydration and sensitisation. Product review – Decleor Aromessence Rose D’orient Oil Serum

Recently I’ve been aware of a change (for the worse!) in my skin, which I could put down to a few things: laziness (not always following my normal regime because I’m so tired!), post-pregnancy hormone changes or a change in the weather and seasons (exposure to the cold). It’s started to get a bit red in patches after cleansing, which is called excessive erythema (a little redness/erythema is OK after cleansing etc. because massaging the skin stimulates blood flow but excessive erythema is a sign that your skin’s not happy with something and you shouldn’t ignore this). It also feels quite parched and tight after cleansing, like I can’t wait to get my moisturiser on – this is also not OK as your skin should always feel ‘comfortable’. The last thing my skin’s started doing is producing quite an oily shine by about lunchtime, to the point where I feel the need to blot with a tissue or something. This isn’t normal for me and if there’s one thing I hate on my skin, it’s that greasy feeling!

The thing about skin is there’s no real way to diagnose any of its ‘unhappiness’, you just have to see what you think it could be caused by and change a few things to see if you can get the right balance again. Knowing your skin well in the first place is really important, as you need to know what’s normal for your skin when it’s at its optimum and what your skin type is, this will help you notice when it’s unhappy and when it’s time for you to make some changes.

The three things my skin’s started doing (tightness, erythema and excessive oil production) are all things that that aren’t normal for my skin, which means I’m starting to experience them because something’s recently changed for my skin and it doesn’t like it. The good news? It can be temporary and I have control over it, providing I can work out what’s causing it!

Tightness generally is a sign that you’re dehydrated (not enough water content and ‘plumpness’ to the skin). A consequence of dehydration is excessive oil production (the skin’s desperate attempt to rebalance itself). And the redness is a sign of being sensitised (which, I should state, is completely different to having a sensitive skin type) and this is also a consequence of the dehydration.

Luckily I’m in need of a new cleanser and toner so this is my opportunity to try something a little more nourishing and try and get my normal skin back. So whilst looking around a department store I find a couple ladies I know working on a Decleor stand and we get chatting. They’re both saying really lovely things about the company they work for and the Decleor products (none of which I’ve ever tried before) and I mention that I’m looking to try a new cleanser and toner. Off one of them goes to find me some samples to suit my skin and, whilst she didn’t come back with cleanser or toner samples, she did bring me back a sample of Decleor Aromessence Rose D’orient Oil Serum, which is for sensitivity. Very excited (as I always am at new products!) I trot off home, eager to try out my new find.

I’ve always like the neutrality of Decleor’s packaging (I hate fuss) and I’m aware that they use natural ingredients and essential oils in their products, mimicking nature and biology to achieve solutions to skincare concerns.

The Aromessence Rose D’orient Oil Serum is designed to sooth sensitised and reactive skins and to be applied in the morning before your moisturiser, applying a couple drops with the finger tips and massaging them into the face and neck. Normally I’m not a fan of oil serums in the morning, as I fear it’ll affect the application of my make-up and give me oiliness during the day but I gave it a go. It’s a light, delicate oil and easily absorbs into the skin, leaving almost no shine or slip to the skin whatsoever, which I was really pleased about. And yet it felt comfortable and nourishing, like my skin breathed a sigh of relief! I followed the instructions and just a couple of drops do spread well across the face but I would use another couple for my neck alone. Despite this, I still think this is an economical product to use and the 15ml retail bottle would easily last me a good 6 months at least, so I could happily stomach the £45.

The clue is in the title: this product smells delicious. I love rose fragrance anyway but the subtle aroma to this product is not so sweet, it’s almost a savoury, herbal take on rose and one that’s completely natural, as if it’s been squeezed straight from the garden. If I’m honest, I’m put off by smelly products because that normally signifies parfum/perfume, which plays havoc with my dehydration issues but I’m quite happy if it’s all natural and Decleor famously claim to work with natural ingredients and essential oils.

The next test is how my skin fared during the day with it on and to my pleasant surprise I had almost no oily shine develop throughout the day. This meant that the oil had, after just one application, already started to nourish my skin enough for it not to over produce oil in compensation. At the end of the day, I cleansed my face and did still notice some excessive erythema but hey, you can’t expect a miracle after just one day of using something. After two days of using the oil serum, my redness had almost disappeared; my skin didn’t feel tight or parched after cleansing and was much more comfortable. A week later and my skin is its old self again. I. Am. Impressed. And that takes a lot; I’m not an easy customer to impress.

The thing I love about this product the most is that having a skin condition like dehydration then causes other concerns like the redness/sensitisation and excessive oil production but the Aromessence Rose D’orient Oil Serum combatted all these issues for me in one go and quickly too. Meaning I save time and pennies = happy me. It can be all too tempting to strip the skin with harsh or astringent products when it gets oily but that’s counterproductive and actually adding oil to oiliness in this case did the job.

I said to my husband that I think I’ve stumbled upon a hero product to add to my collection and even he was taken aback (he knows how hard I am to please!) but Decleor, you did good.

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