Friday, June 6, 2008

Fragrance Bouquet Loves... Kanebo

Fragrance Bouquet doesn’t just love Kanebo, Fragrance Bouquet adores Kanebo! We were long overdue for another FB Loves feature, so today I would like to present to you the five Kanebo products I simply cannot live without.

First of all, a few words about Sensai, the line I use: Sensai means “delicacy” or “finess” in japanese, but it also expresses an ideal of beauty and grace. Perhaps it wouldn’t inspire too much confidence in some, but Kanebo actually begun as a textiles company and research into cosmetics was spurred by the fact that the women that worked with silk textiles at the factory had beautifully youthful hands, so the company begun researching the effects of silk on the skin. The first skincare products were launched in the 1930s and they have been featuring silk as an ingredient ever since.

My skincare regime begins with the Sensai Silky Purifying line to which I am absolutely devoted. Before I started using the three products I am about to present I had problems with clogged pores in areas in my t-zone, mainly on and around the nose as well as between the brows. Unfortunately I am averse to facials, which I find unnecessarily harsh. Not only do I find them unpleasant, but my sensitive skin actually reacts with long-lasting (more than normal at least) redness and once I’ve even had problems with a tiny broken capillary that vain as I am I had to remove with laser. However, after a couple of months of using Kanebo’s Sensai Silky Purifying products, my skin is not only radiant but also cleansed: No more clogged pores, no more little unsightly black dots that drive me mad every time I look in the mirror. Just pure, radiant, clear skin which I am actually really proud of!

· Sensai Silky Purifying Cleansing Oil (Step 1): As the name suggests, this product is an oil, used for cleansing the skin. It is not very thick, but it requires only a tiny amount per use, which makes it a great bargain in my opinion. Just a small amount in the palm is enough to clean the whole face of any trace of make-up. It melts away everything, from mascara to foundation without requiring excessive rubbing. A simple gentle massage is enough, which means that you avoid unnecessarily stressing the sensitive eye area, which is so susceptible to fine lines and wrinkles. I use this every night even when I have gone without make-up, just to cleanse my skin of any impurities at the end of each day. Despite its oily texture, it washes away immediately with water, leaving the skin feeling moisturized and clean.

· Sensai Silky Purifying Creamy Soap (Step 2): As I mentioned earlier, I have extremely dry skin. Every single soap I have ever used on my face –even foaming cleansers that contain no soap- have left my skin feeling dry, experiencing a ‘pulling’ sensation, as though my skin was two sizes too small for my face. Not so with this one. My skin actually feels moisturized after using this product. This is meant to be used after the cleansing oil, applied on moist skin. The amount needed is minute: you are only meant to use a pea-sized portion on the fingertips, with which you create a rich lather when rubbing them against the wet palm of the other hand. It feels beautifully rich and soft, a simple luxury I truly enjoy. Both the creamy soap and the oil have a delicate, not-quite-there scent that enhances the experience, since it actually smells really clean.

· Sensai Silky Purifying Silk Peeling Powder: My holy grail of peeling products, this is the softest, gentlest peeling there is. Having had problems with redness around my t-zone area in the past, I dislike using anything granular on my sensitive skin. This product is an enzyme powder that can be worked into a lather when it comes into contact with water. It thoroughly removes dead skin cells, old horny matter, dark pores and patches of rough skin, leaving one with a silky, retexturised surface, ready to soak up a mask or moisturizer of choice. The packaging is perfect, allowing one to obtain the right amount with precision just by turning the bottle upside down once. Those with oily skin can turn to the Sensai Pore Clarifying Essence for extra help with keeping the pores clean and sebum free, but those of us with dry skin should limit ourselves to the three products listed here.

The next two products belong to the Sensai Silk line as well and are my night-time staples. This line, meant for the younger skin, is created to prevent the early aging symptoms, as well as to correct existing early aging problems. These products promise to bolster the skin’s defenses against environmental aggressors, shielding, protecting and reinforcing the skin-cells, helping to preserve youthfulness and minimizing the need for corrective interventions later on.

· Sensai Silk Softening Lotion (Step 1): This product comes in either Light or Moist formula, the first one for normal, oily or combination skin, the second one for dry or very dry skin. As you’ll probably already have guessed, I use the Moist version. I was originally unconvinced that I needed to use a primer before my moisturizer, but I instantly changed my mind after being provided with a generous 30ml sample of the lotion by the amazing and helpful SA that always helps me choose my skincare products. The difference this makes is amazing. Using this before the emulsion means I wake up with ten times more moisturized skin that is absolutely, improbably radiant. This one is meant to enhance the effect of subsequent products used, and indeed, it does deliver as promised. You can apply this with a cotton pad, or simply gently pat the liquid with the palms of the hands, the method I personally prefer, as it is not only cost-effective (no product going to waste just soaked up by the pad), but it also seems to just work better, creating a better moisturized surface.

· Sensai Silk Emulsion (Step 2): This product comes in Light, Moist and Super Moist versions, depending on the needs of one’s skin. Having ultra dry skin I prefer the Super Moist formula, of course. The texture of this product is silky and feels rather more runny than other intensive, heavy-duty moisturizers I’ve used, something I am pleased about, since I do not have to work it into the skin, but can simply gently apply it. It comes with a pump applicator, meaning the product does not get exposed to the elements or contaminated with bacteria and foreign matter from the hands, keeping it good and fresh to the last drop. It is so very moisturizing, I have to actually remind myself to apply cream in the mornings when I wake up! My skin simply never feels dry ever since I’ve started using this, and my complexion is radiant and even. Thoroughly recommended!

What are your holy grail skincare products? Have you found anything that *really* works? Please let me know!



Ines said...

Hey Divina,
great post. :) And at just about right time for me because I'm slowly out of all my facial products and was thinking what to try next. No one I know ever tried Kanebo so I didn't think of trying it but now, I have a new line on my try list. :)
One of the best facial foams for me was Carita's but unfortunately, that particular one is no longer produced.
And now I absolutely love Sisley's tinted cream which I use instead of foundation. The SA convinced me it would be worth it, and she was absolutely correct, I'm happy to say. :)

Perfumeshrine said...

You have really turned to cosmetics and skincare, I see.
Seems like you have found a line that suits you, which is always the hardest part.
I have had good luck with Avene products, Toleriane line from LRP and the Issima serum.

BTW, if you do have occassional redness, sensitivity and dryness, as you mention on a couple of spots in your post, you might want to check out Rosacea sites for elimininating possible triggers.
It's a much more common condition that one might think, I hear, and quite preventable.

ForTheLoveOfPerfume said...

Hello Divina! Great post and these products sound wonderful! I'm sure your skin looks stunning. My mother is an clinical aesthetics nurse and director of a MedSpa so most of my skincare comes from dermaceutical and cosmeceutical grade products that I get from her MedSpa at deep discounts. However, I have discovered something I love lately and it is by Estee Lauder. It is Re-Nutriv serum and at $200/bottle I have yet to purchase it! However, the sample I have exfoliates, refines and makes my skin glow all in one fell swoop! And it has a pleasing, clean scent. I see a purchase in my future, possibly with my birthday money. ;-)

Have a great weekend, my dear friend!

ForTheLoveOfPerfume said...

By the way, rosacea should be diagnosed by a Dermatologist. You probably have sensitive skin and if you've found a line that works for you, stick with it! No need to get all crazy with rosacea triggers, with what I know about skincare from my mother! :-)

Anonymous said...

Dearest Divina,
I agree wholeheartedly with tmh256's post! (Sorry to be so impersonal). I have had problem skin all my life and rosacea definitely should be diagnosed only by a dermatologist. I speak from experience! I have tried numerous products, and have found the gentle, non-perfumed and non-alcoholic products have the best effects. I'm certainly going to look at Kanebo - you describe them so well - at the moment, having used many of the different skincare and cosmetic companies' products, I've returned to very simple skin care, using a mud soap from the Dead Sea (yes it really IS from the Dead Sea. Divina, you know I'm telling the truth here!)I also moisturise lightly, although I have oily skin, and I know I'm right to do this. My skin is sensitive, too, so I'm like you! (But not beautiful like you...)
Have a lovely weekend,

priscilla said...

This is just in time! I have been looking for new skin care (okay...I'm always looking!). Lately I've been using Caudalie, which does not upset my skin, but also does not seem to add anything either. I was thinking about trying Arcona, but I'll take a look at Kanebo as well.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Anonymous said...

I have normal/slightly oily skin that needs only light moisturizers, but it is very sensitive so I must put extra care when it comes to cleansing.
I've been using Erno Laszlo products for the last five years : Active phelityl oil and Sea mud soap in the morning and evening to cleanse; Antioxidant moisture complex spf 15 as a day moisturizer and I must say that I'm completely satisfied with the results. Sisley also makes great skincare products (at those prices they'd better be great), their Pâte Moussante Phyto-Aromatique is a gentle cleanser with a gorgeous smell and the Creme Reparatrice is perfect for many purposes, and again, it smells heavenly.
I've recently discovered Eisenberg Paris at my local Sephora, their For Men line has a lot of good products, I'm using the Anti-age Complex (it was on sale at 50% off)
but I couldn't tell if it has any significant effect on my (already young looking) skin. What I'm really happy about is the Repairing Night Cream Treatment, a gentle non greasy cream that soothes my skin while repairing weather and pollution damages; it comes in a 75 ml tube at the affordable price of 46,00 Euro.
Thanks, Divina, for bringing up the subject, and for giving us the space to comment about it; by the way, I've used the Kanebo Sensai Silk light emulsion in the past (during hot summer days) and it really is superb. I'd recommend Kanebo, along with Sisley and Erno Laszlo to all the men who like me care about their skin (who doesn't, it's our FACE, boys) and simply want it to be healthy and look natural since they perform really well on our skin, leave no trace and all have good but not strong smells.

Divina said...

Dear Ines, I haven't tried any Carita products myself (I don't even think they are available here) but I have a couple of friends that swear by them. I am totally gonna check out Sisley's tinted cream! They have some really gread products don't they? I personally love their "Botanical Night Complex". Not crazy about the smell, but it does work!

Divina said...

Hi Helg,

As I mentioned in a post sometime ago, I've decided to start this new feature, "Fragrance Bouquet Loves" where I will be writing about things other than perfume that really make an impression. As mentioned in that post this will not come at the expense of perfume posts. The number of perfume posts per month will remain the same, there will just be some extra reading per month now.

As for rosacea, I am aware of the condition but I do not have it. Thanks for your concern.

Ines said...

Dear Divina,

that's so true for Sisley. :) I think all of their products have this strange smell you get used to and then don't notice anymore. At least that happened with my tinted cream. I almost didn't buy because of the smell, and now I don't even notice it. Thank god. ;)

Divina said...

Oh Tamara, you touched on such a great subject there, the price of these things! I hate how some of the yummiest products are SO prohibitively expensive! I fell in love Dior's L'Or de Vie Extrait when it first came out (the texture is to die for) but I seriously can't justify paying the humongous price tag! On the other hand I'd fork over the same amount without second thought for a pair of shoes that I loved... So why not for my face? Maybe it's the fact that the product is finite...

Divina said...

On the contrary Linda, you are SO beautiful, inside and out!! Stunning eyes, beautiful face, great figure! And inside, so kind, intelligent, thoughtful, well mannered. I am trully blessed to have a sophisticated reader like you! I am feeling totally guilty right now cause I am probably embarassing you by writing all this publicly. I'm sorry if I went out of line.. *hugs*

Divina said...

Hey girl! I'd never even heard of Arcona but google came to the rescue, heheh. I visited their site and damn those peels look good enough to eat!

Divina said...

Edwardian dearest, thank you so much for allowing us a glimpse into your skincare routine! I see you're also a fan of Sisley - they make great products. Yes the prices are a bit steep and I was a little dubious at first (it was the first natural line I'd ever tried) but the quick results speak for themselves! I will definitely look into Erno Laszlo in the future. (I have experience with other surgeon/dermatologist brands like Cellex-C, dr. Brandt, dr. Sebagh etc, but hadn't tried Laszlo products yet)
Another brand a few of my male friends are happy with is Biotherm, which makes a line specifically for men. The smell is slightly strong and identifiably 'masculine' but pleasant nevertheless. A plus is that all the products come in pump dispensers which keeps them clean and fresh.

Divina said...

LOL, Ines! At first I even thought my Botanical Night Complex had gone off even! But you are *indeed* right! You stop noticing after a while :) Not to mention the fact that the results are SO worth it I'd be willing to put up with a slight olfactory distraction anyway ;)