The skincare industry has changed in recent years, with a new focus on skincare that contains naturally-derived products and no chemical nasties.
The Telegraph, among many other outlets, predicted that natural beauty industry would boom in 2018 - and it certainly has.
Why? We're beginning to understand the ways in which using chemicals on our skin is linked to certain health concerns and negative hormonal changes.
So it seems only natural (get it?) that shoppers have become more discerning when choosing the products they use on their largest organ - their skin. After all, what we apply on our skin, we absorb.
This makes plant-based alternatives very appealing for some, and new developments in the natural skincare industry means luxury, efficacy and environmentally-friendly plant-based options are no longer mutually exclusive.
So you can imagine our excitement when Sukin's new Purely Ageless range of natural anti-ageing products came across our desks.
The range contains five hard-working, natural skincare products: Reviving Eye Cream, Rejuvenating Day Cream, Intensive Firming Serum, Restorative Night Cream and Hydration Elixir.
Putting on my beauty editor hat (and trying very hard not to be swayed by the super cute purple packaging) I figured out the order I'd be applying the products.
For a skincare routine to be successful, layering products in the correct order is crucial. Serums in particular won't work as effectively if they're applied after heavier creams like moisturisers. They need to be applied on clean, damp skin so there's nothing obstructing their ability to sink deep into the skin.
In my morning routine, I'm testing Sukin's Intensive Firming Serum, Reviving Eye Cream and Restorative Day Cream. Nice and easy!
After cleansing, I apply the Intensive Firming Serum first. Why? This product is rich in natural active ingredients that help firm skin - and smoother more refined skin is something I really want! The firming serum felt fantastic - likely because it contains pure ribose, acacia gum and rosehip oil - and got straight to work reducing the signs of ageing. I'd definitely use this again.
Next I applied the Reviving Eye Cream. The under-eye area is thinner than the skin on the rest of your face, so a gentle but hard-working eye cream is a must.
Sukin's Purely Ageless eye cream apparently reduces the first signs of ageing by up to 78 per cent in two weeks, so I was very excited to try this one.
I used my ring finger to gently dab the cream around my eyes, and let the green coffee, sunflower oil and rosehip oil fight my dark circles and fine lines. I was delighted to find the cream settled into my under eye area perfectly - no heaviness.
The next product I trialed was the Rejuvenating Day Cream. The cream, designed to visibly reduce the appearance of wrinkles, feels incredibly smooth on the skin.
I'm not sure if it's the white hibiscus, baobab, cocoa butter or vitamin E (a skincare powerhouse ingredient), but my skin felt super soft - tackling the rough and dry patches winter kindly bestowed on my skin.
After finishing with my SPF50+ sunscreen and applying my make-up, I headed off for work. I wondered if the use of natural products would cause my skincare to slip and slide under my make-up, or if the creams would feel different in a few hours. But they didn't! And I was smug as anything.
Not only were these products targeting my fine lines and wrinkles, they were cruelty-free, vegan and biodegradable - and they were legitimately working. My face felt the best it had in a while and I had that 'doing something good for the environment' glow.
When I got home from work, I was excited to take my make-up off (don't we all jump for glee when we can change into our pajamas and wash our face?) and try some more products.
Using Sukin's natural products on my skin all day had left my skin glowing, so I was keen to add a nourishing night cream and hydrating product into the mix. Depending on your skin type, you can use either product on their own for a very easy and simple night routine, but I'm excited and want to apply both.
After cleansing my face, I tried the Hydration Elixir. I never used to use a hydrating product, that is until I became a beauty editor and learned my incredibly oily skin was just desperately dehydrated. Turns out my skin was over-producing oil to compensate for being thirsty, and since using a hydrating balm my skin has thanked me for it.
Sukin's Hydration Elixir instantly sank into my skin, and got to work re-hydrating my face. It no longer felt tight, like it would erupt in oil if it didn't get some moisture right that second. I instantly fell in love, the fact this nifty product was hydrating, great for slowing the signs of ageing and full of natural products earned it a spot in my regular skincare routine.
I let the Hydrating Elixir breathe for a few minutes (you should wait at least a minute between products to let them sink in) and then I applied the Restorative Night Cream, which sank into my skin effortlessly. I'd never tried a product with macadamia oil before and was delighted by the way it made my skin feel; soft, hydrated and plump! What a winning product.
Not surprisingly, the next morning I woke up to beautiful skin. Not Photoshopped, unrealistic, movie-set skin, but my skintone was more even, my fine lines already seemed to be retreating (ha ha take that, wrinkles!) and I was sporting a natural glow (yes, yes I'm very modest).
I must admit I initially felt skeptical about using more naturally-derived ingredients in my skincare. I foolishly believed skincare full of chemicals would provide better, more targeted benefits for my skin. How ridiculous.
Nature knows best, and it seems using natural ingredients in our skincare benefits both our skin and the environment. So I don't know about you, but I'm making a permanent switch to skincare that uses lovely, natural ingredients - my skin has thanked me for it!
Sukin products are available in Farmers stores.