YOU CAN ADD city living to the list of reasons you have blotches and wrinkles and saggy skin. Bathe in the average city’s pollution, indulge in late nights, harsh lights, an imperfect diet washed down by prosecco or beer and by age 33, your skin’s elasticity is reduced by 10% and concentrations of Vitamin C and E drop by 30 to 40%, so say the chemists at the 21-year-old French skin care line Caudalie. Even if such youthful dissipation is long in the past, imagine the mess your skin is in a few decades on.
Cell burnout is what they call it, and that is what their Anti-Cell Burnout Complex was designed to combat. Just introduced is a range of products in a collection called Vine[Activ], intended to reverse the damage, plump and smooth the skin, and protect against future skin trauma. Oh, there’s lovely sounding stuff involved. Extracts of fern and licorice, sweet almond, rose and neroli oils, a serum, a moisturizer, a voluptuous eye cream, a detox oil. It’s all as lavish and delicious as one would expect from the French. And not badly priced, either, for a luxury line, topping out at $52 for the glow-activating serum.
As your guinea pig for this line, I was treated to the night detox oil, three-in-one antipollution moisturizing treatment and the eye cream. All of which I immediately tried out, expecting absolutely nothing. I mean, what could happen overnight? And yet, I thought my skin did look better in the morning, simultaneously thinking that I could be deluding myself, as I frequently do. However, my friend Kathleen blurted when I met her this morning for brunch, “What have you done! You glow—I mean in a good way, not greasy, just…glowy.”
The line was introduced by Caudalie lead esthetician Regine Berthelot at the luxe Sherber + Rad skincare salon at 1101 15th Street, NW—where you can also play about with Tom Ford’s cosmetics, La Mer potions and other extravagantly priced brands. It’s a highly edited collection, they say, selecting the best of the best from each line they carry. You can also have your forehead yanked, lips plumped and jowls injected, if you’ve a mind to. And, if you’re a VIP, there’s a private garage entrance where your secret service contingent can wait.
When she’s not tending her city garden, Stephanie likes to dab on new skincare lotions and potions.