Are you tired of the marketing tricks and jibber jabber brands constantly use to sell us their, often less than stellar, products?
You’re not alone. Cosmetic chemists feel the same way. That’s why Raffaella Gregoris, holder of a Master’s degree in both skincare chemistry and cosmetology, has decided to put her days in the lab to better use, and create her own skincare range, Bakel, made of 100% active ingredients and 0% useless substances.
No fillers. No thickeners. No colourants. No preservatives even. Each and every ingredient in any of her products is there because it has been scientifically proven to benefit skin in some way. Go Bakel! Go Raffaella! And go Italy!
Yep, Raffaella and her line are Italian, so as ashamed as I feel for only discovering Bakel after moving to London (gosh, I’m such a bad Italian, aren’t I?), I’m thrilled this cool brand that fuses simplicity with innovation, and the genius behind it, hail from my home country.
I recently had the chance to try two products from the line, Cool Eyes, an intensive treatment for eye-bags and dark circles, and Nutriremedy, a rich, hydrating cream for dry skin that can be used on the face, eye area, eyelids, neck, and decollete.
Nutriremedy 24h Comfort Cream is my favourite of the two, so let’s start with that. First off, don’t be put off by the packaging. The tube looks so small because it’s a sample. The full size is packaged in a 50ml tube that’s gonna last you for ages (good news, since this stuff costs a whopping £98.00!). It’s very hydrating, so you really need a little for each application.
White in color, the consistency is on the thicker side. But, not so thick its stays on the skin forever. It sinks in quite quickly, and without leaving a greasy residue behind.
The cream is chockfull of hydrating and moisturizing ingredients. Glycerin and sodium hyaluronate are two humectants that draw much-needed moisture from the environment into the skin. Sodium Hylauronate is the coolest of the two. It holds 1000 times its weight in water, and works well both in high and low humidity conditions. That’s why it’s a must in creams and serums for dry skin.
You know what’s another ingredient that should be mandatory in creams for dry skin? Shea butter. Nutriremedy, of course, contains it. Shea butter is a skincare hero. Very moisturizing, shea butter creates a barrier on the skin that locks moisture in. Its effects last for 8 hours or more, so there’s no risk your skin will start to feel all dry and tight again within a couple of hours.
Studies have also shown that shea butter works even better than mineral oil, which dermatologists consider to be the gold standards for moisturization. I know a lot of you don’t like it (even if there isn’t absolutely anything wrong with it), so isn’t it great we have a better option, anyway?
Oh, and I was almost forgetting to mention that shea butter may also have antioxidant properties that help us stay wrinkle-free for longer. Other ingredients that have moisturizing and antioxidant properties are sweet almond oil, cocoa butter, and jojoba oil. Nutriremedy contains a lot more actually, but I’ll stop here, or I’d bore you senseless.
Just know that, if you have dry skin and no money problems, this cream is worth the splurge. It makes my skin smoother, plumper, and soft as silk. It does a great job at keeping my skin moisturized in the cold and unforgiving London weather, which is no small feat, trust me.
So, Nutriremedy gets two thumbs up. What about Cool Eyes? This eye cream is especially designed to treat dark circles and puffy eyes, annoying nuisances no cream seem to budge for long. Cool Eyes contains three ingredients that, according to the brand, target the three main causes of undereye bags.
Dipeptide-2 is said to improve lympathic circulation and stimulate drainage of excess liquids. Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7 reduces inflammation, which could potentially reduce premature aging (inflammation is one of its main causes). Unfortunately, most of the studies on peptides so far were conducted by the manufacturers so, while they shouldn’t be discredited, they can’t be taken as the Gospel either.
The third ingredient is hesperidin methyl calcone, which lowers the filtration rate of capillaries. The less blood flows through the capillaries just under the undereye area, the less bluish discolouration you’ll experience there. At least, in theory. In practice, all studies on hesperidin were done on oral consumption rather than topical application, so no one knows if it works when applied on the skin.
Did it work for me? My dark circles don’t seem much improved. Puffiness does. I didn’t get much sleep these last couple of weeks, which meant that I always woke up with very puffy eyes. After applying the cream, it slowly subsided.
My eye area was also much softer and smoother, thanks to the moisturizing properties of cocoa butter and argan oil. It felt refreshed too. The tube comes with a metal rollerball applicator that performs a refreshing and soothing massage on the skin. You just click the bottom once, and small droplets of product appear all around the edge of the ball.
It’s a bit too much for a single application, so some of the product gets wasted, which, at this price point, is less than ideal. But I do like how refreshing and pleasant it feels on the skin. What I like less is the inclusion of menthol, which can be irritating. Maybe it’s because it’s quite far down on the ingredient list, but it didn’t cause any problems this time. No tingling or stinging sensation, or any other sign of irritation. Phew!
Would I recommend it? It depends. It’s by no means a must-have. But it’s a nice to have. Its main ingredients are quite new in skincare, so there’s no much science to back them up yet, but the small research on them is promising. If you like to be the first to try new things, and have the money to afford it, you may like to give it a go.
But, if you can only splurge on one product, I’d go with Nutriremedy. If you have dry skin that is, or you’ll find it too rich for you. There’s more science backing up the effectiveness of its ingredient, and it’s sooo moisturizing. Just what skin needs in this crappy, freezing weather.
Rosa Centifolia Flower Water, Glycerin, Ethylhexyl Cocoate, Butyrospermum Parkii Butter, Polyglyceryl-3 Dicitrate/Stearate, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis Oil, Myristyl Myristate, Acacia Decurrens/Jojoba/Sunflower Seed Wax Polyglyceryl-3 Esters, Jojoba Oil/Macadamia Seed Oil Esters, Squalene & Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, C10-18 Triglycerides, Glyceryl Stearate, Phytosteryl Macadamiate, Phytosterols, Tocopherol, Acetyl Tetrapeptide-11, Theobroma Cacao Butter, Prunus Persica Oil, Mannitol, Maltodextrin, Vigna Aconitifolia Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Aqua, Cocos Nucifera Oil, Pelargonium Graveolens Oil, Pogostemon Cablin Oil, Tegetes Minota Oil, Salvia Scalarea Oil, Copaifera Officinalis Resin, Cymbopogon Winterianus Oil, Amyris Balsamifera Oil, Cedrus Atlantica Wood Oil, Citrus Aurantium Amara Oil, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia Oil, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis Oil, Xantham Gum, Glyceryl Caprylate, Glyceryl Undecylenate, 1,2-Hexanediol, Caprylyl Glycol, Lactic Acid.
Cool Eyes Ingredients
Hamamelis Virginiana (witch Hazel) Water, Sorbitan Olivate, Theobroma Cacao (cocoa) Seed Butter, Hesperidin Methyl Chalcone, Dipeptide-2, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Saccharomyces Cerevisiae Extract Menthol, Tocopherol, Glyceryl Caprylate, Glyceryl Undecylenate, Xanthan Gum Glycerin.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Pros: Nutriremedy is very moisturizing, and keeps skin soft and smooth for hours; Nutriremedy has a rich texture that absorbs quickly without leaving a greasy residue behind; Thanks to its rollerball applicator, Cool Eyes provides a refreshing feeling and nice massage; Cool Eyes helps reduce puffiness; Both products are properly packaged in sleek tubes.
Cons: Cool Eyes didn’t do much for my dark circles, and its applicator releases too much product every time.
Summary: Bakel is a new skincare line that only uses scientifically proven to work active ingredients. No fillers here. Nutriremedy is a rich, but non-greasy, cream for dry skin. Very moisturizing, it softens, smooths, and plumps it for hours. Cool Eyes comes with a rollerball applicator that massages skin and provides a refreshing feeling. It reduces puffiness, but didn’t do much for my dark circles.
Price & Availability: Nutriremedy £98, Cool Eyes £80 a t SpaceNK.
Rating: Nutriremedy 4/5, Cool Eyes 3.5/5