Kiehl’s apothecary opened in Debenhams 8 weeks ago in Meadowhall, Sheffield and I was lucky enough to be invited to a master-class by the brand, it was an introduction to the brand for those who weren’t in the know and also a chance to test products ( cult classics and new) in real time, in your own time ( btw they also do master classes for groups of 4-5, which is to be pre booked but a great way for you and your friends to spend an afternoon chatting about skincare and beauty?…BLISS)
Anyway, I digress… I wasn’t trying to click bait you into a long post about Kiehl’s ( and the 3 mind-blowing facts) I mean we all know the upmarket American brand called Kiehl’s Apothecary right… established in 1851? Before it was bought over by L’oreal , it was a real pharmacy… which became a chain, and well, you can guess the rest.
The whole line up of products is here at Kiehl’s UK (or .com if you’re on the other side of the pond) They also have a store presence in most department stores over here in the UK. It is on the pricier side, but I do enjoy and see results from some of their cult and newer hero products.
My favourite picks
- The Powerful Line reducing concentrate: Containing 12.5% Vitamin C and Hyaluronic Acid
This has been reformulated in December 2017 and now contains a whopping 12.5% Vitamin C (Slow release and stable as this last part especially is the hardest to get right) along with Hyaluronic Acid, which is the best hydrator for our skin’s. I’ve used this for a while now( onto my 3rdbottle already!) and I can honestly say that this is the best daily Vitamin C serum I’ve ever used, I can really see the results on old acne marks. ( If you are a person of colour, these are the hardest to get rid of) these are fading quite a bit and it sinks into the skin without being greasy ( most Vitamin C products seem to be greasy( as being water soluble they usually are based in oil or are gritty ) .
This feels slightly warming on skin, tingly even; if you aren’t used to strong products.( My skin is a rhino hide though, so this rarely happens to me. )
Over time I’ve noticed a glow (Vitamin C is a known anti oxidant that done right formula wise, can help make skin visibly brighter***).
I’m going to lay the cards on the table, I’m not sure I can honestly say that it reduces any wrinkles… That’s a huge claim to make, maybe not even completely unbiased ( studies are done by the parent company L’oreal and nothing can penetrate the skin barrier deep enough – the Epidermis acts like a bouncer at the popular nightclub) but for glow, even toned skin, I can vouch that this works.
- The Daily reviving concentrate (Their day oil)
The oil has ginger root, Sunflower and tamanu oil ( all natural anti oxidants )and claims to strengthen the skin’s defences against daily aggresors. It is Mineral oil free for those whom this matters.
I love this, because this is the kind of dry oil that I love using during the day as it sinks in, with zero oiliness and sunscreen sits really well on top, I’ve used a fair few face oils and this is one of my favourites.
One thing though, it claims to be anti-acnegenic, I think this is a very huge claim as nothing can really claim that, and should not claim that as acne has a multiple trigger factors and anything can cause acne with the right trigger. That having said, this claim doesn’t take away from what is essentially a great product. It is suitable for all skin types, and one should take a few samples of all of my reccomendations before they dive into investing in them.
- The Midnight recovery concentrate and Midnight recovery eye cream
This is their number 1 bestseller, I’ve been using this for more years than I count. I do like this, I’ve just finished their nth bottle (sorry its not in the picture). I’ve been trying to use up my other oils and serums before I repurchased.
My skin loves this, and when I tried this at the Masterclass, I realized again why. This has their signature oil Squalane * (made from olives and used in a lot of their cult products) amongst other Essential oils, which I know can have the potential for irritation…but for me it seems to be a great cocktail. Plus it’s a dry oil. It used to be the last thing I used before I used to go bed.
From their same range I love their Midnight recovery Eye cream. It contains same hero ingredient, Squalane*, you just need the tiniest amount, warm it between your ring fingers and pat in gently in and around your orbital bone. This is something I notice right away, if I haven’t used it the night before ( I often use it during the day time too…) At 39, and if you are in your 30’s you should know that, you cant mess around with eye cream. Using one should be your mantra.
- The Ultra facial moisturizer
This contains their cult ingredient Squalane and and a water retaining compound Imperita Cylindrica both of which hold in hydration and nourishment for extended periods of time ( see below**) This states that its best for dry skin, but it is so light and easily absorbed, most people seem to tolerate this. My skin loves this, and though I keep trying out different brands… I keep running back to this. There are many variants of this, they keep coming out with collaborations ( the latest limited edition one is supporting charities helping with Autism Awareness ) and if money were no object, I’d buy them all.
- The Glow Formula Skin Hydrator
This baby is one of the company’s newer offerings. It contains Pomegranate extract, and natural illuminating minerals. The best way to describe it is that it is a love child between a serum and a blurring glowing primer. It’s a skincare, makeup hybrid. It has a natural tint, which looks quite dark, but clearly as it can be seen, the tint disappears and leaves a natural sheen. If you have great blemish free skin ( I hate you already lol) you can get away with just this as a last step after sunscreen. Or it can be used mixed with foundation/ tinted moisturizer or even a highlighter.
The range however is much wider than this, and there are some of hero products that are something I will be buying in the future…as they are generous with their samples and I’ve loved using the samples given thus far:
- The crème de corps body cream
Sali Hughes names its a hero product in her epic beauty tome ( Pretty Iconic, and if you’ve don’t own a copy…you should.) Because in my book, if you haven’t read Pretty Iconic ( out now in paperback) you really haven’t read properly about beauty… no seriously. I’ve tried this hero product in travel sizes, sachets etc. And I that this is amongst the only few things that hydrates my skin. It contains Kiehls almost signature oil now, Squalane*, amongst a few other things. It is a pricey little beggar, but a little goes a long way, and this may very well be my Christmas treat to myself. <3
- The creamy avocado eye cream
My friend Inchy loves this. This is her holy grail. This is enough for me, but after tried it at the masterclass, I know why. It’s creamy and hydrating without being overbearing, heavy and stingy. I loved it. I’d got a few samples and now am ready to take the plunge.
- The Midnight recovery cleansing oil
I fell in love with this at first try… I covet it, but need to go through my gamut of cleansers before I justify purchasing yet another oil cleanser, great though it is. It seems to cut through grease, makeup, dirt, and sunscreen ( yes, Im a grubby kitten and had all of the above on my hand) This seems to rub it off, and wash off easily too. OMG if you buy one cleanser this season, make it this… ( It does have essential oils though, so buyer beware)I
- The Youth Dose Eye Treatment.
I checked, this seems to be one of Kiehl’s latest offerings. It is a retinol based eye cream. Ive only had it two days, so its early to say about its long term effects. But it is gentle and has an immediate brightening effect ( sorcery or crazy cool ingredients or a bit of both?)
I have a feeling, I might be investing in this in about a couple of months. I’ll keep you updated for sure 🙂
All of these aren’t really exclusively created for women or any gender in particular ( the packaging is mostly gender neutral, which I do appreciate) but, they also have a men’s grooming range, I quite like the Men’s shaving cream for the legs. ( Ssssh don’t tell the husband, I borrowed it though 😉 ). They do sell hair care ( something I’ve not tried to be honest) and they have some great gift sets on at the moment ( Christmas or permanent collection? I forgot to ask… but worth a dekko)
They’ve also launched a curated range of luxe dog grooming products so…this is something one can use as an excuse to treat oneself and one’s four legged pooch.
Ok anyway I’ve teased you for long enough, So what are the three random trivia about Kiehls that you may have to hunt a bit, not have known…or just completely mind blowing?
- Their Calendula extract toner is still hand filled with calendula petals today. Every single bottle has been carefully filled by an actual person who is passionate about their job, and some who have worked there for over 25 years in their New Jersey factory. So when you buy this, you actually buy a piece of their almost independent heritage and you know its been handmade. How very cool is that?
- Every jar of their Ultra facial cream has a map of Greenland on it, ever wondered why? Well Kiehls lent support and protection from the elements to the team that went on the “Greenland first Ascent” expedition. They found that their skin stayed hydrated for a long period (reportedly 24 hours!) against some of the harshest climate that man can encounter. Hence the Greenland map on the cream. It does what it says on the tin. Literally.
- And I think I saved this for last, because this is a rather interesting piece of beauty history that Im not even sure people working on counter at Kiehls even know about… So here goes; when the legendary make-up artist BOBBI BROWN was looking to create her first lipstick she collaborated with a pharmacist with kiehls pharmacist( when it still was an independent pharmacy) So this is huge. Bobbi Brown and Kiehls are brands tied together in the most surprising of ways, Bobbi Brown started her empire with a nude lipstick in fact BB is a brand that is associated with bringing the natural makeup back in and forever in the makeup repertoire, now that was created by a Kiehl’s pharmacist to her specifications.So Kiehls was associated with the most iconic brands in the most innocuous of ways…** Now wasn’t this post worth reading to the end?
Any really good beauty story that you know of that you’ d love to share with me?Have you tried Kiehl’s , what is your favourite product, I’d really love to know. ~Love Elle xx
Note of disclaimer: All opinions are my own, I have no affiliations with any company, there are no affiliate links on this post and most of the products on here( full sizes ) have been purchased by me, some samples have been kindly gifted by the company, but this has not affected my opinion, nor swayed it . Please check ingredients list of all products that you buy, in case you have allergies to any of the products that I have mentioned. If you are particularly sensitive or even if you’re not, allergies can happen suddenly, even with products that you may have used for years. If unsure, please do a patch test on your elbow, and wait 48 hours before using any of the products I’ve suggested. Please do not copy, publish any photos on this blog or contents in its entirety or otherwise without my express permission.
*Squalane: I love this article on it, but please do your own research. Squalane most closely mimics the oils naturally present in our skin, Squalene, and works with all skin types.
** Bobbi Brown & Kiehls connection I love this little nugget of information that came out from a random listen to a podcast channel that regularly features beauty entrepreneurs and I love this podcast. Do give it a listen, please don’t take my word for it.
***Vitamin C’ s effect on the skin is best described in this article. Again research is your best friend, so please do your own research on this too.