Rosehip Lip Seed Oil is actually a cream, not an oil. It's very nearly a good option for moisturizing the lip area, offering a nice blend of non-fragrant plant oils such as rosehip, coconut, macadamia nut, and castor oils. Each of these, along with the shea and cocoa butters, are excellent reparative and moisturizing ingredients.
However, Aesop also included a mix of tangerine peel oil, ylang ylang (listed by its Latin name Canaga odorata), and lavender. Tangerine peel is a fragrant skin irritant that can cause a phototoxic reaction when skin is exposed to the sun, which can lead to skin discolorations (Source: www.naturaldatabase.com). Lavender presents its own problems that can exacerbate irritation and dryness, as we explain in the More Info section. None of these fragrant oils are desirable in a skin-care product, especially not in a formula applied to the delicate skin of the lips.
Ultimately, Rosehip Lip Seed Oil could have been a winner from Aesop, but it falls short due to the inclusion of irritants (of which there are more than the called-out vitamin E). Check out the well-formulated and skin-friendly formulas on our Best Lip Products list to get genuine improvement in the condition of dry, chapped lips, minus the risk of irritation that can keep the lips perpetually chapped and flaky.
Research indicates that components of lavender, specifically linalool, can be cytotoxic, which means that topical application causes skin-cell death (Source: Cell Proliferation, June 2004, pages 221–229). Lavender leaves contain camphor, which is a known skin irritant. Because the fragrance constituents in lavender oil oxidize when exposed to air, lavender oil is a pro-oxidant, and this enhanced oxidation increases its irritancy on skin (Source: Contact Dermatitis, September 2008, pages 143–150). Lavender oil is the most potent form, and even small amounts of it (0.25% or less) are problematic. Although it's fine as an aromatherapy agent for inhalation or relaxation, it is a must to avoid in skin-care products (Sources: Psychiatry Research, February 2007, pages 89–96; and www.naturaldatabase.com).
This Vitamin E-rich, lightweight cream – formulated for the delicate and sensitive skin of the lips – replenishes moisture and softens lips. It contains no silicone or paraffin, and is formulated for frequent use.
Water (Aqua), Glycerin, Stearic Acid, Cetearyl Alcohol, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil, Ceteareth-20, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Glyceryl Stearate, Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Citrus Tangerina (Tangerine) Peel Oil, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Tocopherol, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Benzyl Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Cananga Odorata Flower Oil, Disodium EDTA, Dehydroacetic Acid, Benzalkonium Chloride, Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Root Extract, Beta-Carotene, d-Limonene, Linalool, Benzyl Benzoate, Farnesol, Benzyl Salicylate, Geraniol.
Strengths: Some products are packaged to keep their light- and air-sensitive ingredients stable.
Weaknesses:Multiple fragrant ingredients are present in each product reviewed, and this poses a strong risk of irritation; no effective options for treating concerns like acne, brown spots, or rosacea; jar packaging for some of the moisturizers won’t keep the beneficial ingredients stable; overpriced.
Australian brand Aesop bears the same name as the famous Greek storyteller, and their skin-care products certainly emulate the art of storytelling with their formulas and marketing. The question is whether or not you can believe Aesop and their natural-themed skin-care stories, or if it’s mostly fable.
From Aesop’s stripped-down, utilitarian packaging, “earthy” product descriptions, and overall design aesthetic, it’s easy to see why those interested in natural-oriented products are attracted to the Aesop brand. How could skin-care products that seem to be so pure and natural be bad, right? We certainly understand the emotional pull natural products have on many people, but the truth is there are good and bad natural ingredients (snake venom and poison ivy are both natural ingredients, but you wouldn’t want them on your face), just as there are good and bad synthetic ingredients. Going natural without knowing the details of what you’re buying is a recipe for skin problems, not a guarantee of better products.
Refreshingly, compared to many natural-themed lines, Aesop doesn’t rely on scare tactics or outlandish claims. Therefore, you won’t read anything about “toxins” or about made-up claims that all chemicals are bad (because everything is composed of chemicals). Instead, Aesop prefers to rest on the quality of their formulas and oeuvre to do the real selling. Judging by the number of requests we’ve had to review this brand, their less sensationalized approach is working!
With that promising start, it’s disappointing that Aesop chose to include such a generous amount of fragrance and plant-based irritants in many of their products. In fact, there wasn’t a single fragrance-free option in any of the products that we reviewed. (In fact, the box they were shipped in was saturated with fragrance just from the shipping process.) There were a few products with lower amounts of added fragrance—these instances are noted (where applicable)—but there usually were other compelling reasons to avoid any given product in this brand, or at least to consider it cautiously.
Also noteworthy: You will find that much of Aesop’s line, from their cleansers, toners, and moisturizers to their masks and eye treatments, have high-end price tags. While we tend to leave it up to the reader to determine what is or isn’t expensive, there were a few instances where the formulas were so basic that we had to mention the disconnect with the cost—these were truly simple blends of ingredients that in no way justified their cost.
All of the above is a prelude to the most critical downfall of the Aesop products: There are no options that can successfully (and without potential irritation) address the needs of various skin types or skin concerns of many people. Whether you’re struggling with acne, wrinkles, both, or numerous other concerns, from sensitive skin to conditions like rosacea or eczema, you won’t find brilliant products to treat them here. Overall, that means assembling a great skin-care routine with Aesop products just isn’t possible.
Aesop is sold primarily in department stores like Barney’s New York, online, as well as freestanding Aesop stores throughout the United States. Despite their growing distribution, we cannot stress enough how much this line’s products disappoint. Aesop has natural ingredients aplenty—but what good is that when so many of the natural ingredients they chose are of little to no benefit for skin, or are potentially problematic?
For more information about Aesop, visit http://www.aesop.com/usa/
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