Hello. It’s me. I’m here.
Sorry for the radio silence on the blog front. There’s been a fair bit going on here and I just haven’t been in the right mind-set to sit down and blog. But I’m here now and bringing you a review that is very long overdue.
I’ve mentioned Stratia on here a few times before – solely in reference to their cult product Liquid Gold (what is it with that name and cult products eh?!)
I ordered my first bottle back in November last year and banged on about it so much that earlier this year the brand got in touch to ask if I would like to try some of their other products. They very kindly sent me their Soft Touch AHA mandelic acid and the Velvet Cleansing Milk.
This post is going to give you my thoughts of Liquid Gold and the Velvet Cleansing Milk. I’ve used the Soft Touch AHA a few times and I’ve not had any problems with it, but my skin is so easily sensitised I’m still struggling to incorporate acids into my routine with any regularity, so I am not in a position to review it.
I jumped on it initially because it contains the magic trifecta of skin fortifying ingredients – fatty acids, cholesterol and ceramides (see the first impressions post for more details). For a while I used it on and off as a serum, with an oil on top because it wasn’t heavy enough to work alone as a moisturiser for me. But then back in early May, I had an epiphany and realised that my persistent and heavy use of facial oils was was not working for my skin. In exchange for oils I needed a good moisturiser – one that wasn’t going to exacerbate my acne, but would keep my skin well moisturised. On paper, Liquid Gold was exactly what I needed, but in practice it just wasn’t enough and I still felt a little dry after use. I then started mixing it with a pump of Drunk Elephant’s B-Hydra, a gel like hydrating serum – jackpot. The B-Hydra gives just enough of a boost to leave my skin super hydrated but not suffocated.
So, Liquid Gold. This is a truly outstanding product. The ingredients are amazing, it’s affordable and this kind of skin repairing product is essential for those who are regular users of acids and retinoids.
If you’re oily, you could easily use this as your moisturiser; if you’re dry you’ll probably prefer it as a serum under a heavier cream or oil. If you’re somewhere in between like me, have a play and see what works for you. You could mix it with a few drops of hydrating serum like the B-Hydra or Clinique’s new Moisture Surge Concentrate or, if you prefer, a few drops of you favourite facial oil. My ultimate treat (usually when I’m spending a Sunday in front of Netflix) is a bit of Liquid Gold, a bit of B-Hydra and a smidge of May Lindstrom Blue Cocoon. My skin literally sings when I apply this.
I’m very nearly done with my first bottle and have a back up.
Liquid Gold is only available from Stratiaskin.com for US$24. International shipping is available. If you are not keen on ordering from the US, Paula’s Choice Omega Serum is a great alternative and is more easily available from Paula’s Choice regional websites around the world.
Water (Aqua), Propylene Glycol, Ethoxydiglycol, Niacinamide, Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate, Rosa Mosqueta (Rose) Hip Oil, Hippophae Rhamnoides (Sea Buckthorn) Seed Oil, Hippophae Rhamnoides (Sea Buckthorn) Fruit Oil, Panthenol, Dimethicone, Glycerin, Squalane (olive-derived), Cetyl Alcohol, Vaccinium Macrocarpon (Cranberry) Seed Oil, Tocopherol, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Ceramide NP, Ceramide AP, Ceramide EOP, Phytosphingosine, Cholesterol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Carbomer, Xanthan Gum, Diazolidinyl Urea, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Disodium EDTA.
Velvet Cleansing Milk
First thing I will say is, this is not what you think it’s going to be. What you expect is exactly what it sounds like – a milk, or a milky lotion, something like you used to get back in the olden days (like 20 years ago…). Those cleansers which came with instructions to “tissue off” *vom.
Thankfully, this is not that. Stratia’s Cleansing Milk is a milky looking gel. Somewhere inbetween an oil/gel like Osaka Renaissance and a cream cleanser, but actually nothing like either. It’s pretty unique.
The first time I used this I will admit I dismissed it almost instantly as the most boring cleanser I had used in a long while. No smells, no bells, no whistles. Just a plain old cleanser. Straight to the back of the cupboard it went. Then when my skin was going through a particularly rough patch I decided I wanted to cut down on my flannel use, but found myself without an emulsifying cleanser (sorry Jordan Samuel, I know Plié is supposed to be emulsifying, but I just can’t…)
So, I reluctantly dragged out the Stratia and put it back to work. I was pleasantly surprised. The more I used it the more I liked it. It’s very gentle and while it’s never going to be a miracle worker my skin is just so happy when I use it. Once, I massaged it in until it was nearly dry and it actually started to gently exfoliate my skin. Bonus!
I would say this cleanser would be perfect for any skin type, from oily to dry. While it does contain oils, it’s not a classic gel-to-oil formula so it’s not really going to remove make-up, especially eye make-up. I would keep it for a morning or second cleanse – personally use it more in the morning, preferring something a bit more luxurious as my evening second cleanse.
I’ve nearly finished the first bottle that Stratia gifted me and I purchased a back up last month. For the price (US$15) I would highly recommend adding this to your basket if you are planning to pick-up the Liquid Gold. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.
Available only at Stratiaskin.com
Water (Aqua), Olive Oil PEG-7 Esters, Matricaria Recutita (Chamomile) Flower Essential Water, Caprylic/Capric Triglycerides, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Oil, Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Polyacrylamide, C13-14 Isoparaffin, Laureth-7, Ceteareth-20, Allantoin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Disodium EDTA, Propylene Glycol, Diazolidinyl Urea, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamatek