Monday, 24 September 2012

Real REN reviews - Camping Collection

Back in August I started using REN skincare products, all natural, all British and used by my local (ish) spa at the Montpellier Chapter Hotel in Cheltenham.

After a good 6 weeks of use I'm posting my reviews. I'm focussing on practical day to day use. I'm 37, I work, I'm a Mum and I like the outdoors. I look after my skin but I don't do high maintenance.

Going camping? Which skincare essentials would you take?

The true test of any decent beauty products is whether you can be bothered to travel with them. Packing to go away always separates the men from the boys and I tend to select the ones I really can’t live without. If you opt for travel sized cheaper products on the essentials when you go away, then your expensive ones aren’t serving you well. It’s probably time for a change.
The brief: The weather’s going to be hot, I’m using shared showers at odd times of the day and I might be accompanied by two kids under 5. I will have easy access to a sink and I don’t have space for extras. Bedding, food and having fun are my priority on this trip.

I chose to take three essentials:

·         Ultra moisture day cream
·         Photoactive sun veil SPF 15
·         Ultra moisture cleansing milk

I left behind the Tonic Moisture Mist, which I regretted, but it’s a heavy glass bottle. 

Ultra Moisture Day Cream

I have been using Dermologica Skin Smoothing Cream for a number of years now, and sometimes interchanged with Clinique Dramatically Different moisturiser (cos my sister-in-law picks it up cheap in the states!). So how does this compare?

Packaging: Small 50ml bottle is plastic and very light. Fits easily in a cramped cupboard
Practicality: you just rub it on! Pump makes life a lot easier.
Travelling: Secure lid, small enough for flying (not that I did) 
Results: You don’t need a lot and it lasts me all day. It doesn’t have the rich feel of the skin smoothing cream I’m used to, but does have the same results. Seems to be lasting for ever.

Photoactive Sun Veil SPF 15

REN believe that you shouldn’t mix your moisturiser with your sun cream, so they don’t do a 2-in-1 product. According to REN the skin gets confused with the two products and doesn’t really know how to react. So moisturise first, then apply a sun protector.

Packaging: Small 50 ml bottle with pump, plastic
Practicality: Slap it on once you’ve moisturised then whenever you need it.
Travelling: Light, secure lid, small.
Results: I was concerned it was only factor 15 so topped up often, and still put unsightly kids 50+ sun block on my nose cos it always burns.Worked well but I think having two products might put some people off, who has the time or the space??

Ultra Moisture Cleansing Milk

I wanted a face wash and I have two REN options. One is for general cleansing, the other for make up. So I opted for this one which is a cleanser. I also chose it cos you rub onto a dry face then wash off with water, no flanner required. Perfect for sink washing, or even tent washing with a wipe/bottled water.

Packaging: Large 150ml bottle with pump, plastic.
Practicality: Squeeze onto hands, rub together, massage onto face, rinse. Quick and easy. (even when pissed or in the dark – that's another post)
Travelling: as big as a bottle of shampoo, but light enough. Secure lid.
Results: I really like this product. I’m used to cleansers that leave my skin like they need a good slap of moisturiser on top, but this doesn’t leave me with that tight, dry skin feeling at all. It’s not complicated, it’s just simple and effective and makes you feel clean. One of my top REN products.

Next review will be the best products when you've had too much to drink and then a hangover the next day.

To read out about my first REN facial, click here

The Gower - empty and beautiful
 By the way, the camping was wonderful, four days, hot sun, large empty beach, cold beer, nice wine and happy kids playing til dark.