Ultra Repair Cannabis & Oat Dry Oil
First Aid Beauty’s Ultra Repair Cannabis & Oat Dry Oil gets so much right about what it takes to make a great facial oil – but then drops the ball with a glaring formulary mistake.
First the good: this comes in a dark blue bottle with a dropper dispenser that adequately protects its delicate ingredients from both light and air exposure. This luxurious oil glides across skin with ease, but quickly absorbs for a non-greasy feel. Still, because it is an oil (and as a dry oil it’s not as oily as some others), it’s best for those with normal to dry skin.
Unlike many traditional face oils that contain just one oil, this features a blend, including jojoba seed, Cannabis sativa (hemp) seed (not to be confused with cannabidiol or CBD), avocado, shea, and grape seed oils. All of these non-fragrant plant oils are rich in both fatty acids and antioxidants to soothe and replenish dry skin.
Also in the mix are antioxidants green tea, black currant, and ginseng extracts to boost this product’s ability to protect against environmental factors, plus soothing oatmeal and licorice extract.
But along with all those good ingredients come some that were poorly chosen, including a high amount of fragrant rosemary leaf oil, which puts skin at risk for irritation, the opposite of what a product claiming to nourish dry, reactive, sensitive skin should contain (see More Info for details).
Also at issue is the inclusion of arnica flower extract, which, when used on a frequent basis can cause skin sensitivity, along with the fragrance ingredients limonene and linalool, which are also irritating.
No question there’s a lot to love about this product, but for something designed for sensitive skin, it makes too many missteps to ignore. There are far superior options on our list of best face oils.
- Dry oil texture isn’t overly greasy and absorbs quickly.
- Contains a good mix of antioxidant and fatty-acid rich non-fragrant plant oils.
- Includes additional antioxidant ingredients + skin soothing ingredients.
- Packaged to protect is light- and air-sensitive ingredients.
- Contains fragrant rosemary leaf oil, which puts skin at risk for irritation.
- Includes arnica + fragrance ingredients that put skin at additional risk for irritation.
Irritating Ingredients: We cannot stress this enough: Sensitizing, harsh, abrasive, and/or fragrant ingredients are bad for all skin types. Daily application of skincare products that contain these irritating ingredients is a major way we unwittingly do our skin a disservice!
Irritating ingredients are a problem because they can lead to visible problems, such as redness, rough skin, dull skin, dryness, increased oil production, and clogged pores, and they contribute to making signs of aging worse.
Switching to non-irritating, gentle skincare products can make all the difference in the world. Non-irritating products are those packed with beneficial ingredients that also replenish and soothe skin, without any volatile ingredients, such as those present in fragrance ingredients, whether natural or synthetic.
A surprising fact: Research has demonstrated that you do not need to see or feel the effects of irritants on your skin for your skin to be suffering, and visible damage may not become apparent for a long time. Don’t get lulled into thinking that if you don’t see or feel signs of irritation, everything is OK.
Generally, it’s best to eliminate, or minimize as much as possible, your exposure to ingredients that are known to irritate skin. There are many completely non-irritating products that contain effective ingredients, so there’s no reason to put your skin at risk with products that include ingredients research has shown can be a problem.
References for this information:
Journal of Dermatological Sciences, January 2015, pages 28–36
International Journal of Cosmetic Science, August 2014, pages 379–385
Clinical Dermatology, May-June 2012, pages 257–262
Aging, March 2012, pages 166–175
Chemical Immunology and Allergy, March 2012, pages 77–80
Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2008, pages 124–135
Food and Chemical Toxicology, February 2008, pages 446–475
American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2003, pages 789–798
This antioxidant-rich facial oil is formulated with a blend of 16 cold-pressed active botanicals including Cannabis Sativa Seed Oil, rich in omegas and fatty acids, and Colloidal Oatmeal. Together they work to help calm and soothe dry, distressed skin. Arnica Montana Flower Extract and Borage Seed Oil help hydrate and accelerate skin’s natural healing processes.
First Aid Beauty At-A-Glance
Strengths: Several fragrance-free products; relatively reasonable pricing; sunscreen provides broad-spectrum protection; wonderful fragrance-free body wash.
Weaknesses: AHA pads contain a low amount of glycolic and lactic acids; some products contain fragrant plant extracts; every product contains feverfew extract, which has benefits, but also can be an irritant; jar packaging; for a line meant for sensitive skin, their use of common irritants is disappointing.
With a name like First Aid Beauty (FAB for short), it's obvious this line is meant to rescue your skin from distress, and, indeed, these products are targeted toward those who have sensitive, easily irritated skin, but who still want an elegant, department-store flair. Ironically, FAB falls short on both ends of the spectrum.
Despite the company's claims of providing "therapeutic action" for "tough skin conditions," some of the products contain irritating ingredients that are extremely problematic for any skin type, especially for those with sensitive or compromised skin. It was disappointing to see known irritants like sulfur, balsam resin, and witch hazel in products claiming to calm your skin and reduce redness. "What were they thinking?" was a question that came up more than once while reviewing this line!
On the bright side, First Aid Beauty does have a very good fragrance-free body wash. There are also a few products that omit the fragrance, which is a definite must for sensitive skin, although, in fact, all skin types do best with fragrance-free products. Unfortunately, the fragrance-free formulas in this line come up short on important ingredients, like antioxidants and skin-repairing ingredients.
It is best to avoid their Ultra Repair Cream, the SPF 30 sunscreen, Detox Eye Roller, Blemish Eraser, and the Anti-Redness Serum because they all contain enough irritating ingredients to make conditions like acne, redness, and sensitivity worse.
For more information about First Aid Beauty, visit your local Sephora or Ulta or call (800) 322-3619 or visit www.firstaidbeauty.com.
About the Experts
The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.
Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.