In a world where hundreds of beauty products are released each month, few creams manage to hang onto the shelves for more than a few years.
Pommade Divine has been around for more than 300. And it’s still going strong. What’s its secret?!
Pommades are waxy salves made with animals fats (like lanolin), herbs and essential oils. They date back to the Middle Ages, when monks (that’s why they were called “divine”) made them to treat all kinds of bruises and wounds.
Their popularity soon spread all over Europe. Over the centuries, every pharmacist created its own version, competing against one another for customers. The winner was Butler & Co. Their Pommade Divine was made with ingredients from the Far East, including cinnamon, benzoin, nutmeg, clove, and stirax. Even Queen Victoria was a fan.
Soon, Pommade Divine became a staple in every British household. Until the late 1980s, when the company that made it, axed it. When Diana Heimann, former Vogue editor, heard the news, she was distraught. To cheer her up, her husband David did what any decent husband would do: he bought the brand (if that’s not love, I don’t know what is)!
Pommade Divine was saved and survives to this day.
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What’s In Pommade Divine?
Lanolin is derived from the sebaceous glands of sheep. It’s what protects these animals from harsh winter weather, so they can to stay out in the cold for hours without freezing (lucky them!).
In case you’re curious, lanolin works by creating a waterproof, protective barrier on the skin that prevents water loss.
But, wait, isn’t lanolin bad? Nope.
When it was first used in skincare in the ’60s, it was full of pesticides and other impurities that gave people allergies. These days, lanolin is purified before ending up in our creams and lotions.
Now, unless you have very sensitive skin, lanolin is unlikely to cause any problems.
Related: Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Lanolin In Skincare
Shea butter is rich in hydrating fatty acids (oleic, stearic, linoleic, palmitic, and linolenic). Why does it matter?
Fatty acids create a barrier on the skin that slows down water loss. Studies have shown it does this better than mineral oil, which is considered the gold standard by most dermatologists.
Oh, and did I mention it has anti-aging properties too?
Related: The Complete Guide To Shea Butter In Skincare
The amber-coloured texture is thick and somewhat greasy (that’s lanolin’s fault). It spreads easily on the skin, but takes a couple of minutes to fully absorb. When it does, it leaves no sticky residue behind.
Pommade Divine is infused with a blend of exotic herbs and spices, including cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove that make it smell amazing. Far from medicinal, the herbal scent is aromatic and soothing.
Every time I sniff it, it takes me back in time to a medieval garden carefully tended by monks. It’s not too strong either. It doesn’t stay too close to the skin, but neither does it enter the room before you do.
How To Use It
Pommade Divine is a versatile balm that cures many ills. It treats dry skin, chapped lips, rough heels, rashes, bruises, itches, insects burns, cracked nipples, blisters, and even stretch marks.
Simply apply on the affected area as often as necessary.
Performance & Personal Opinion
Pommade Divine promises to heal every skin evil. But does it deliver?
Let’s start with the bad news: it did not have much of an effect on my stretch marks, but I can vouch for everything else.
Super moisturizing and soothing, Pommade Divine helps calm down irritated skin and hydrate dry and cracked patches, getting them back into top shape.
My favourite use is as hand cream. The cold winter weather is trying its hardest to crack my hands up and ruin them. Just a touch of Pommade Divine helps restore all the moisture the harsh temperatures have stolen from them, keeping them soft and healthy.
I also reach for Pommade Divine when my lips are particularly dry and sore (taking all those lip swatches doesn’t do them any favours).
The thinnest layer is enough to soothe them, and keep them soft for hours. I’d use it a lot more often, if it only tasted better. The herbal flavour is not horrible, just not as delicious as vanilla or cherry.
Related: How To Heal Chapped Lips
Who Is This For?
Who Is This NOT For?
- Oily skin
- Acne-prone skin
- Sensitive skin
The modern Pommade Divine is housed in a simple white jar with a silver lid. It’s embossed with the image of a mother gently applying the pomade on her son’s bruised knee, reinforcing the healing properties of the pommade and its value as a household staple.
Although it’s a jar, I like it. There’s not much here that will spoil when exposed to light and air, so the pommade keeps all its beneficial properties till you reach the end (or forever, as that’s when you’ll hit bottom).
Besides, there’s no way this stuff can be packaged in a tube. The thick, slightly sticky, texture simply wouldn’t come out of a tube well, no matter how much you’d squeeze it.
My only gripe is the size. Yes, it lasts for ages, but it’s too big and heavy to carry around with me. I wish it came in a smaller pot as well. That way, I could keep the big jar on my desk, and its little sister in my bag. How convenient would that be?
Does Pommade Divine Live Up To Its Claims?
|Uniquely formulated using 97% natural ingredients, Pommade Divine is a multi-purpose skincare remedy that helps to quickly repair and deeply nourish dry, damaged skin.||True.|
|Fast, soothing relief for minor skincare injuries such as bruises, burns, cuts and scrapes, and insect bites.||True.|
|Soothes and protects sore, inflamed skin, even on young children and babies.||True.|
|A deeply moisturising protectant for dry, itchy skin, cuticle care, rough heels, and chapped lips & hands.||True.|
|Can help to relieve long-standing skin conditions including eczema, dermatitis and psoriasis.||Its moisturising properties can… but some of the essential oils may worsen them if they’re triggers for you.|
|Helps reduce the likelihood of scarring.||There’s no scientific proof this is the case.|
Price & Availability
£20.00 at Liberty London
Do You Need It?
If you have dry, irritated skin and have tried everything to no avail, this can help.
Dupes & Alternatives
- Lanolips Everywhere Multi-Cream (£10.99)
Lanolin, Olus Oil, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Parfum (Fragrance)*, Jojoba Esters, Styrax Benzoin Resin Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Cera (Wax), Eugenia Caryophyllus (Clove) Bud Oil, Myristica Fragrans (Nutmeg) Kernel Oil, Eugenol*, Acacia Decurrens Flower Cera (Wax), Polyglycerin-3, Cinnamomum Zeylanicum Bark Oil, Cinnamomum Zeylanicum Leaf Oil, Limonene*, BHT, Cinnamal, Benzyl Benzoate*, Linalool*, Citric Acid.
Ooo the history sells this product to me. I like the jar packaging and find it appropriate for this product type.
Janessa, I agree. For once, the jar packaging is very appropriate. Love its history too.
Sounds like Bag Balm,and the multitasking claims make me think of Egyptian Magic and Bio Oil.
H, yes, it;s one of those balms that does a bit of everything.