Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Review : REN Omega 3 Optimum Skin Serum Oil

For the past six weeks or so I've been trialling REN's Omega 3 Optimum Skin Serum Oil and ClearCalm 3 Clarifying Clay Cleanser. Today's review is about the Omega 3 serum and tomorrows will be about the clay cleanser.

A few words about the brand:

I rarely mention (or care) about a brand's "ethos" but I'm making an exception for REN because it's pretty much free of BS that you should hear it. REN is about "clean" skincare (no synthetic fragrances, mineral oil, silicones and parabens) but they don't spin the usual "natural skincare is better than yours" line. Their view is that: "It's very difficult to be entirely precise when it comes to words like “natural” and "chemical". Every ingredient in every cosmetic product is a chemical in the sense that it consists of molecules made up of atoms of chemical elements. In addition, many natural (ie not synthetically derived) compounds are poisons (eg arsenic) and so to use the term "natural" is also meaningless without further explanation." WELL SAID REN. I'll  probably end up plagiarising this at some stage. (Ignore the "chemical-free skincare" description on M&S' website)
-Their products are not tested on animals.
-Full list of ingredients on website!! *Throws confetti*Skips towards the rainbow*

Right then, about the product. I'm pleased to report that this doesn't stink of fish oil. (Though oddly enough, the Omega 3/fish connotation is what piqued my interest) It has a deliciously sweet fruity smell which makes it a joy to apply. The consistency is quite runny, so you have to be careful that it doesn't trickle off your fingers. It comes in a plastic pump bottle and it's easy to control the amount that's dispensed, ensuring no product wastage. I thought it might not absorb well because of the slippery texture, but it absorbs perfectly. I sometimes layer it with other oils and there's no greasiness, thanks to its light consistency.

{ The Ingredients - "Bio Actives" in bold }
Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Oil, Camelina Sativa Oil, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil, Phaeodactylum Tricornotum Extract, Bisabolol, Parfum (Fragrance), Linalool, Limonene, Tocopherol.

Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride: an emollient
Wheat Germ Oil: "nourishes and provides essential vitamins to protect the skin from oxidative damage"
Camelina Sativa Oil: AKA "gold of pleasure" oil (*snicker*) is rich in Omega 3. "Promotes cell renewal and optimum moisture levels to restore firmness and elasticity"
Rosa Canina Fruit Oil (Rosehip Oil): "rich in Vitamin A. Stimulates the natural metabolism of skin cells". That doesn't mean an awful thing beginning with C, it means healing and repairing the skin (scarring, sunburn) and reducing fine lines. It also rehydrates the skin.
Phaeodactylum Tricornotum Extract: seaweed
Bisabolol: anti-inflammatory (found in Chamomile)
Linalool, Limonene: fragrance ingredients
Tocopherol: anti-oxidant

"Clean" skincare is all well and good, but does it work?
It shure does. My skin is usually "normal", but come January my make-up didn't sit well and the only explanation I could think of was that my skin was dry. With less than a week of use, my skin was back to normal and I could use face powders without looking all gross and flaky.

It's good to use as a main oil to hydrate the skin but also light enough to use as a "booster" layered with other oils to give your skin a bit more love when it's feeling sad and dry. I prefer to use different oils to beef up my skincare routine, rather than changing moisturisers, because I find oils to be much more effective in treating the skin. (Plus, it means that the old moisturiser won't be left to languish at the back of the skincare drawer.)

It can be expensive to have a bunch of face oils on rotation, but this is very reasonably priced at £23 for a 30ml bottle.* It works out as £76.67/100ml, which sounds quite expensive but a 30ml bottle lasts AGES. £23 is very reasonable, especially compared to other oils aimed for dry skin, e.g.:
-Aromatherapy Associates Intensive Skin Treatment Oil - £44/15ml
-Decleor Neroli Serum, £44/15ml
-Sunday Riley Isis Face Oil, £98/30ml

Trilogy's Rosehip Oil Antioxidant+ Oil (£26.50/30ml) is another great product, but I don't find it to be as hydrating.

Would I recommend it? 
It's a good serum to use, whether you have dry skin or not. (Keeping your skin hydrated is vital for keeping fine lines and wrinkles at bay - so don't wait for the signs of dryness before getting yourself an oil!) However, I'm not sure this worked for me - tomorrow's post will explain.


*You'll receive 10% off your first order at :)

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