There is a certain prissy femininity deep within me that is satisfied by using flower-based skincare. I always think of myself as relating to a women somewhere in France in the 18th century who’s personal apothecary has supplied with all sorts of loveliness for what ails my feminine visage whenever I spray on rose water. Or alternatively, as a geisha when smoothing camellia oil over my face, knowing I’ll come away with soft and glowing skin. Whether or not it stirs in you the same kind of melodramatic glamour, floral botanical skincare keeps you far from looking like a weed.
Popular in Japan, and also known as Tsubaki Oil, Camellia oil has been used by geishas for centuries to take off makeup and purify skin – which honestly was reason enough for me to indulge, given their lost standing connotations with flawless poise and beauty – but if you need more proof than that then please do read on; It is a singularly healing oil that enhances skin’s moisture retention ability. Camellia oil is ripe with palmistic and Omega-6 Linoleic fatty acids, as well as numerous anti-aging polyphenol antioxidants. Soft, supple skin is a promise with continuous use of camellia oil.
Where to find it:
Boscia boasts a completely preservative free line of skincare. Of course, if you are a purist you may purchase the tsubaki beauty oil to pat onto your face before smoothing on moisturizer. My personal favorite is the tsubaki oil night mask after which my skin is smooth and luminous, hiding the fact that I’ve only gotten four hours of sleep while wearing it. Thank God for these little things that help us get by.
Tatcha is my dream-love skincare fantasy. I can see myself residing in my perfect apartment, plainspokenly elegant and minimally romantic with just the right amount of weathering for character, and slipping into an agent provocateur silk robe to perform the Tatcha skin ritual. Their pure camellia cleansing oil melts off makeup and smooths skin to silken perfection.
Rose not only evokes terribly romantic connotations, but smells amazing and possesses a few handy skin-saving properties. Rose oil is highly regenerative and anti-inflammatory to the skin. Rose oil also has a profound effect on skin in the way that, when added to other creams and serums, it primes it to absorb more of your chosen product, making them vastly more effective.
I remember once looking at a jar of this and thinking “oh rose face mask, that must be lovely” then opening it and being introduced the a brown and gelatinous product. All aesthetic issues aside, it smells quite pleasant and actually is very richly hydrating and soothing to irritated skin, possibly that which has been windburned in the unrelenting New York winter wind or sunburned from tanning in Nice. I don’t know. We’re dreaming here.
I’ll be honest with you right here at the start- there are certainly more inexpenisve versions of this available, and I will even tell you that you can make your own rose water – but if what does it for you is a name brand, then Jurlique’s Rose Water Balancing Mist is just the luxurious, sonorously titled spray of choice to brighten your complexion. I like to mist this on as a final step after I’ve applied my various creams and serums to keep my skin looking dewy and hydrated.
Calendula, a cousin of the marigold, is a soothing, healing oil that treats your skin gently as a new born baby. It can be used to slow signs of aging and impart skin with a youthful glow. It is gentle enough to use on baby’s skin, but effective enough to tackle (or prevent, if we are being smart, which we are) signs of aging.
Where to Find it:
Recommended for normal to oil skin types, this toner – and the deep cleansing face wash that accompanies it – is gentle and effective at cleaning skin while being soap, alcohol, and paraban free, making it an essential for delicate skin.
A mouthful though it may be, Jurlique’s – dear God don’t make me say it again- This moisturizer is an excellent option for those prone to the unwanted blush of redness due to skin irritation or acne.
Chamomile is a long-standing and well known soother to us all. Whether you’ve been given chamomile tea to settle an upset stomach or know the scent from sachets of the flower meant to induce calm, the general connotation is of a soporific sweetness. Chamomile in skincare has the same effect. It is excellent at calming eczema and psoriasis, protects skin from free-radical damage, and is well suited for skin as delicate as a baby’s.
Where To Find It
Aēsop Chamomile Concentrate Anti-Blemish Masque.
If you have sensitive skin prone to breakouts then this mix of clay and botanicals will help to sooth inflammation and prevent future breakouts by purifying your skin.
There you have it, a bouquet of botanicals to keep your skin petal-soft and protected.