I have been a fan of Caudalie for many years now and during this time I have discovered a number of favourites, that I can't be without. In today's post I am going to share my must-have Caudalie gems with you all. Curious? Then just keep on scrolling!
About the Brand
In case you are new to it, here are a few things worth mentioning: Caudalie is an award-winning French skincare brand, founded by Mathilde and Bertrand Thomas. Caudalie was inspired by the vineyards on the family estate in Bordeaux; after discovering a nutritional value of grape-seed Polyphenols (aka "the most powerful antioxidants"), Mathilde and her husband have collaborated with a team of scientists and pharmacists to create a number of patented formulas and one of a kind skincare products, some of which we are going to talk about in this article. Caudalie believes in organic and natural ingredients, is free of all the well-known nasties and donates 1% of its annual worldwide turnover to environmental projects.
My Skin Type
Dry, dehydrated, sensitive; occasional texture and hormonal breakouts.
Over the years I have tried a lot of different serums from Caudalie, but only Premier Cru Serum stole my heart. Although I jumped late on the "Cru" bandwagon, I can tell you now - this guy is a game-changer.
What is it? a powerful serum with anti-aging benefits, that targets and rejuvenates skin cells in order to make them work harder. Just think of it as a strong cup of coffee for your brain: cells are instantly more awake and productive. This formula contains the brand's star ingredients: Vinergy, Resveratrol (to lift/firm), Viniferine (to brighten) and Polyphenols (to protect). If that wasn't cool enough, Hyaluronic Acid and Niacinamide are also key elements here and, as most of you guys know, both are my favourites. Niacinamide is essentially Vitamin B3, which is going to help minimize pores, brighten and revive skin surface. Over the time cells go back to their youthful condition, while natural collagen production keeps on going up. Complete ingredients' list is here.
First Impression: a liquidy, silky-smooth consistency that gets easily absorbed by the skin, leaving no sticky residue behind it. It is quite lightweight in feel, similarly to your beloved gel serums, but with a bit more kick to it. The scent is described as "an oak rose" fragrance, which reminds me a lot of Lancome Absolue L'Extrait Cream Elixir; it is this signature, luxurious sweet rose scent, which I adore. It won't linger for too long, but if you have a sensitive nose, do give it a good whiff beforehand. Personally, I am a big fan and can easily see myself wearing an actual perfume version of it. This serum works best with the corresponding Premier Cru Rich Cream, but since I don't have one yet - I have been using the serum underneath my [basic] Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cream and together they worked like a magic duo. Skin feels properly hydrated.
Over Time: although you won't see results right away, I think after a few weeks of religiously using it as my night-time serum, I noticed just how well-balanced my skin has become. I was not getting nearly as many dry patches; even stubborn pores on my nose have minimized. Texture was much softer, smoother and despite the fact that I was still getting odd hormonal spots on my chin, they were not even remotely as painful as they used to be. I do wake up to a very smooth, well-rested skin and it appears to be much brighter than before.
Final Thoughts: now in my 20s, I might not be an exact target-market for the Premier Cru line; however, I do think that it had a great impact on my skin's overall condition and appearance. I am sure that if fine lines, dullness, uneven texture are your key concerns - you might really enjoy this serum. Although it is suitable for all skin types, someone with a dry/dehydrated skin will enjoy it the most. It provides a deep hydration, so if you find that your skin is feeling a bit lacklustre or aggravated from stress, environmental pollution or even sun damage - give Premier Cru Serum a go. It might feel like it costs an arm and a leg, but what good serum doesn't? If you are at the point in your life when you don't mind saving up and splurging on a skincare item (bear in mind, I rarely say this about a high-end product) this could be the one.
Vinoperfect Concentrated Brightening Essence
What is it? Vinoperfect range is a recent discovery for me, but I like the idea of it. You guys know my love for Glycolic Acid and Caudalie have created three unique products (toner, serum and night cream) to delicately remove dead cells, thus revealing a beautiful fresh layer of radiant skin. The line also targets dark spots and dullness.
First Impression: I must say that at this point, after using Glycolid Acid serums and toners as part of my skincare routine for almost a year now, I no longer feel the "tingling sensation"; but it still occured when I first used Vinoperfect Concentrated Brightening Essence. If you are new to exfoliating acids, then it is important to mention that most of them do sting a bit for a few seconds, yet in a very gentle way. However, the more you use them, the better your skin absorbs the acid, you build up tolerance and as a result after a couple of days you might no longer feel the tingle. It is advisable to only use products like this as part of your PM routine (apply this essence with your hands or a cotton pad to a clean dry skin right before your night serum/cream), following up with a good sunblock in the morning, because the acid will increase skin's sensitivity to the sun. There is nothing to worry about, just a little caution. I typically use it 2-3 times a week only and it seems to work just fine for my skin type.
Over Time: skin texture improves massively; there are practically no dry patches, blemishes heal faster and there is little to no scarring afterwards; pores get tighter and complexion becomes more luminous. Caused no irritation or breakouts. I sometimes get those tiny little bumps on my forehead, but since using this essence, they haven't resurfaced yet.
Final Thoughts: Vinoperfect Concentrated Brightening Essence will be perfect for those of you, who are into their acids or simply want to revive the skin and get rid of dry patches, dark spots or post acne-scar discoloration. Little goes a long way, so one bottle (5 oz/150 ml) should last you a while. Glycolic Acid in general is every girl's (and boy's) best friend and this essence will certainly suit everyone; your nemesis included.
Beauty Elixir & Co
In this segment of my review, I will quickly run through my top Caudalie essentials, that I can't normally function without. Most of these products have been in my daily skincare routine for more than six years now and I can't recommend them enough. Without further ado, please meet my besties:
Beauty Elixir - whether it is a long-haul flight or just a hot steamy weather, this facial mist will save the day. This product has a cult-following for a reason, it smells like spa in a bottle and tightens pores, sets/refreshes makeup, makes your skin glow. It is packed with amazing ingredients and the scent is absolutely divine; if you get anxious during a flight (or even after a tiring day), simply mist it on your face or pillow before sleep, and a mix of rosemary, mint, rose will udoubtedly invigorate your senses.
Grape Water - aka Beauty Elixir's little brother, this facial mist will instantly refresh and hydrate the skin. I have tried a lot of similar products before, but this guy is my number one. This [actually] is a pure grape water in a spray form; it will calm, soothe and reduce redness in one go - whenever I feel like I have over-exfoliated or even tried a product that angered my skin, I immediately reach out for it. Minerals and plant extracts will also strenghten your natural skin's barrier, helping it become less sensitive over time. Use it to refresh makeup or as a first thing in the morning right before your favourite moisturizer.
Vinosource Moisturizing Sorbet - this in the summer and Vinosource Intense Moisture Rescue Cream in the winter have been two of my go-to moisturizers for soooo long now. I must have gone through so many tubes of this product, I even have a separate stash in my travel skincare bag. These moisturizers are merely the same type of a product, just for different skin types/times of the year. Sorbet is amazing for spring/summer; it is a lightweight gel-cream that fights free radicals and gives you baby soft skin. Also, a perfect all-year-round mosturizer for someone with combination/oily skin type. Rescue Cream, on the other hand, is quite rich in texture and will deeply hydrate, replenish dry and dull skin by repairing skin's hydrolipidic layer. Great if you live in a harsh windy/wintery climate.
Lip Conditioner - I go through it like nobody's business; smells [and tastes] absolutely divine and will work really well as your every day lip balm. Unlike a drugstore chapstick, this formula is actually packed with antioxidants and I feel like my lips don't get as dry and cracked compared to when I am using something else. If you want a bit of colour, check out Caudalie's French Kiss Tinted Lip Balm - these guys are absolutely delicious and give your pout that flirty je ne sais quoi. Shade "Innocence" must be my favourite out of the bunch; I have been using it non-stop lately. If that wasn't great enough, these balms have "anti-wrinkle" protection (thanks to aloe, grapeseed and castor oil).
Hand and Nail Cream - mom, I love you, but I am not willing to share this hand cream with anyone. Not even my cute dog. I kid you not, I actually buy this hand cream in bulk whenever I am in France (as they often have those 2 for 1 offers). This is, hands down, the best hand cream I have ever tried. Even if you have severely dry, borderline aching, peeling skin (as well as dry cuticles) - don't even sleep on it. Just think of it as a face cream (same amazing ingredients plus Avocado and Shea Butter) but for your hands. It is rich, but never sticky or greasy. I keep this cream at my nightstand 365 days a year and don't ever feel like straying. This love is real, y'all.
Make-Up Removing Cleansing Oil - what would I do without you? If you have (just like moi) sensitive eyes and little to no patience when it comes to removing your mascara - this oil is for you. Unlike most of its rivals, this formula won't give you a blurry vision, which is a brilliant thing in my book (as most cleansing oils will make you half-blind for another 30 minutes). Caudalie gives every other brand a run for their money here. This cleanser is incredibly delicate and will gently dissolve your makeup in 1, 2, 3. Could it get any better? Yes! There will be no greasy film, clogged pores or allergic reaction after using it. Another cool thing, Castor Oil will make your lashes stronger; true story here - I practically stopped losing lashes. A true HG for me.
What are your Caudalie favourites? Let's chat some more in the comments!
Products mentioned in this post are both PR Samples & things I bought myself; this review is not sponsored. Full disclaimer here.