Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Review: Vain Pursuits | Complete Personalized Skincare




Chances are if you're reading my blog, you adore hearing about and trying new beauty products but sometimes you just want to keep parts of your routine simple and straight to the point. Take skincare for example, you can scour the shops trying this formula and that looking for the right one to fit you...or... how about having skincare made just for you? Something with your skin, lifestyle and personal preferences in mind.

I was recently introduced to a unique, completely personalized way to get your daily skincare. Vain Pursuits is an eco-conscious beauty subscription service based out of Montreal Canada who specialize in blending your perfect skincare product. No, it's not about matching you to a pre-made bottle on the shelf. Instead, their lab technicians create your special cleanser, lotion, moisturizer (and much more) with your preferred textures, functions and can be made in both non-scented or your scent of choice.


VAIN PURSUITS
How it works: Fill out a personalized skincare survey, consult with your VP gal pal, try your samples and start your monthly subscription.
What I received: Cream cleanser*, toner*, night cream*.
Pricing: $49/month or $44/month (on 3 months pre-paid subscriptions)
Shipping: Canada & USA (Included in subscription fee)
Details: Cruelty free, paraben & sulphate free, focus on natural & plant based ingredients
Website: www.vainpursuits.com
Coupon Code: GERRYVAIN1MTH (pay just $25 for a 1 month Vain Collection)
                        GERRYVAIN (1 month free with a 3-month plan)

I was kindly invited to try the service out for myself and was directed to the Vain Pursuits website to start my skincare survey which is a series of detailed questions meant to really get you thinking about both your skin and your lifestyle. It involved basic questions like age and sun exposure to the amount of sleep you get, how much caffeine you consume on the regular and what is your current skincare regime. There's practically no stone unturned here.


With my quiz completed, I was matched up to a personal skincare gal pal who studied my answers and sent my special blend to the lab to be made. Your first order starts out as a bit of a sampling process which allows you try out the first batch and make adjustments with the help of your gal pal to fine tune the products later on. A week or so after, a little brown parcel arrived at my door!




VAIN PURSUITS: CLEANSER

The very first product to my routine is a cream cleanser, something I absolutely did not expect from opening the box. My gal pal explained (on the accompanying handwritten note card) that to keep it as natural as possible, it was made without unnatural foaming agents which are (from a skincare perspective) unnecessary. I found the texture of the cleanser soft and very comfortable to use but better yet, it rinsed off completely clean without any grimy residue nor leaving my skin feeling parched. It's crafted with calming ingredients like chamomile, aloe vera and green tea plus it is unscented, making it great for sensitive skin. I save mine for mornings when I need something gentle instead of makeup removing and it works perfectly for that. My only battle was actually with the packaging which made it next to impossible to dispense a proper amount through the tiny pump opening, seems like a jar or a squeeze tube would be much better suited for such a dense formula.



VAIN PURSUITS: TONER

Next up, it was time to refresh and tone with my balancing mist. It contained some of the same soothing ingredients as the cleanser and there's not a whiff of alcohol at all which is often found in many commercial toners. Not only do I like using this pre-moisturizer, I also use it as a mid day spritz when my skin needs a little pick me up. Surprisingly this was scented with lime although I mentioned I did not like prefer strong citrus scents in my survey but again this is something that can be changed in a future order if it does happen to you.



VAIN PURSUITS: NIGHT CREAM

As a basic, hydrating face cream this is possibly one of the best I have used for a natural product in terms of all around texture, effectiveness and just the way it works. My usual fear with natural moisturizers is that they are either terribly runny or suffocatingly thick and hard to blend since they often lack the usual chemicals to make them spread smoothly. This one was perfect. In fact, I actually recall saying that out loud the first time I put this on. The cream felt rich and lush with aloe vera gel, avocado oil, grapeseed oil and shea butter yet absorbed quickly into my skin. On certain extra dry winter nights, I prefer mixing this with a facial oil for an extra kick of nourishment but it's actually also a great winter day cream for me and allows my makeup to sit comfortably and smoothly. With no breakouts, no sensitivity, the basic formulation is perfect. The only thing I would change? The scent. Eucalyptus and I have not exactly made friends with each other. 



DOES THIS PERK YOUR INTEREST?
Here's a coupon code to get you started: www.vainpursuits.com
  • GERRYVAIN1MTH (pay just $25 for a 1 month Vain Collection)
  • GERRYVAIN (1 month free with a 3-month plan)
  • (Note, I don't make any money off your order.)

THE FINAL VERDICT
As a brand concept, I think Vain Pursuits is doing something smart and functional. As a product, they have really impressed me with how well their concoctions are formulated and I actually enjoyed every single product. They hit it right just with one trial save for a few tweaks with the scents. Now, this type of subscription service is for a very specific customer, someone who doesn't want to fiddle around looking for the right product and who prefers a basic consistent skincare routine. If you have specialty requirements such as allergies or even scent sensitivity, their lab can make something to fit exactly what you need. Note that you can not buy single products individually and they come packaged together in each kit. Ultimately, I do think you can find similar products at a lower overall price point but customization is the unbeatable factor here and it is well worth a try if you crave something unique.

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