For a skincare nerd with natural leanings like me, finding facial oil was a little like striking gold. I remember when oils really hit the mainstream several years ago. I was pregnant with Max and wanting to reduce my chemical load, had weaned myself off all the cosmeceuticals I’d been using. I was not happy. My skin had lost its lustre and my evening ritual just wasn’t fun any more.

I’d flirted with oils in the past but thought they were too greasy and heavy for me. When I finally found a formula that worked with my skin it was like a religious moment. As I massaged it into my skin, inhaling its delicate scent, I noticed the satisfying slip it gave my fingers. And THEN I admired the bouncy glow left in its wake. Cue heavens opening and chorus of chubby angels. My skin was nourished in a way cream never quite achieved, and I felt so satisfied knowing pure plant oils were responsible.

The reason oils are so amazing is that our skin naturally produces oils and lipids to protect the skin and allow it to replenish. Adding oil complements and supplements this process. Oils are also hydrophobic, meaning they prevent water from escaping. They seal moisture into the skin while keeping allergens and pathogens out. This strengthens the all-important skin barrier. In addition to that, different oils do different things for your skin, as I have discovered, working my way through bottles of facial oils over the years.

A recent and very grateful discovery was the Weleda Firming Facial Oil. The latest addition to the brand’s best-selling Pomegranate range, it’s an indulgent blend of eight organic plant oils: argan, macadamia, pomegranate, sesame, safflower, apricot, avocado, and jojoba. These are all bona fide superstar oils in the skincare world so they work on multiple levels: nourishing, firming and prompting cell turnover.

Weleda is one of those brands I return to time and time again. It was founded in 1921 by Rudolf Steiner, along with doctor Ita Wegman and chemist Oskar Schmiedel in Germany. Their philosophy was to create formulas that are in sync with nature and farmed biodynamically to help the body heal itself.  The products are certified natural and organic, where possible, and carry the NATRUE certification (meaning they are 100% natural and produced with a very high standard of sustainable and ethical practices). The products are also dermatologically tested and many are suitable for vegans.

I’ve taken to using the Firming Facial Oil before bed with my Gua Sha tool. I warm a few drops in my palms, press it onto my skin then use the massage tool (you can also use your fingers) with firm upward strokes towards my temples, releasing the tension in my jaw, down my neck and between my brows. It’s a little moment of peace and afterwards I always notice how plump and happy my skin is.

The massage also brings the blood to the surface; it’s invigorating and perfectly pairs with the antioxidant properties of the pomegranate oil. Argan and jojoba, also present in the oil are known for their low molecular weight and are better able to penetrate the skin.

I also like to use it before makeup in the morning as it’s lightweight and readily absorbed (as far as oils go, you still need to give it at least ten minutes before applying foundation). I use it upon waking, do my morning stuff then pop on my sunscreen and makeup before I leave the house.

The oil joins a host of other delicious products in the Pomegranate range: the super light weight gel Firming Face Serum, a silky but super quenching Firming Day Cream, a lovely fragrance-free eye cream and the decadent Firming Night Cream.  It’s really the icing on the cake of the range, as it fits seamlessly into any skincare regime, whether you use Weleda or not. If you’re not using facial oil, it’s time to reconsider. Holy grail moment or not, it’s one of those products you’ll wonder how you lived without.

Words by Sigourney Cantelo, photography by Alice Mahran, hair and makeup by Jess Diez. In collaboration with Weleda.

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