People tend to have strong feelings about fragrance in their skincare. Some prefer everything unscented; others don't mind a light scent here or there, providing it doesn't linger. Personally, I'm happiest when an effective and gentle skincare product also smells good to me. No matter how well a product works, if I dislike the scent, I can't use it; but if my skin and my nose happen to agree, then I'm delighted.
Since I already love wearing rose perfumes, I'm partial to rose-scented body products and skincare. I'm currently fascinated by Gülsha, a skincare collection made by a Turkey-based family business that has produced raw materials like rose absolute and rose water for the fragrance industry since 1965. Robin posted a Gülsha product as a "lemming of the day" back in March, and if the rose ingredients hadn't made me curious, the sweet packaging would have lured me in.
Now that I've had a chance to try a few items from Gülsha, I'm a fan. The brand's signature product seems to be its Ultimate Rosewater ($10 for 50 ml or $20 for 200 ml). Gülsha states that "by not separating the valuable rose essential oil during the distillation process," it has created a rosewater that "contains all the vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids of the precious rosa damascena flower." I like using rosewater as a post-cleansing facial toner, a mid-day refresher, a pillow spray, etc. This one has a delicate natural rose scent— a bit spicy, a bit waxy, a bit grassy.
If you've already jumped on the micellar water bandwagon and you like roses, you'll be happy to know that Gülsha also offers a Soothing Micellar Water ($22 for 200 ml), also lightly scented with true rose essences. And then there's the Purifying Rose Dust ($20 for 40 g), a small glass jar of unassuming-looking cream-colored powder. It's actually a mix of clay, talc and mild surfactants that can be used as a combination facial cleanser and scrub; just mix a small amount with a few drops of water to use it. This product is already softly fragranced with rosa damascena essential oil, but I like to gild the lily (or the rose?) by mixing it with Gülsha's Ultimate Rosewater and applying it to my face for a minute or two, like a mini-mask. That's my idea of luxury.
Last but not least, Gülsha offers two facial oils, Perfecting Rose Elixir and Regenerative Night Rose Elixir (each $40 for 20 ml). Either one can be used on its own (after cleansing) or can be added to a conventional moisturizer. Perfecting Rose Elixir is a lightweight golden fluid that's perfect for daytime or more humid weather; it has a sweeter rose scent than its sister products. Regenerative Night Rose Elixir feels a little thicker to the touch and is spiked with extra ingredients like hyaluronic acid, making it ideal as an overnight treatment. On the other hand, it's actually more lightly fragranced than the Perfecting Rose Elixir.
Just because I can't get enough face oils or roses these days: I've already used (and raved about) Aroma M's Camellia Facial Oil, so I've been looking forward to trying this indie line's new Camellia Prickly Pear Facial Oil. In addition to the camellia and prickly pear, this formula includes a slew of emollient organic oils (rice bran, jojoba, apricot kernel, argan and evening primrose) and, best of all, it's scented with the "heady synergy" of frankincense with Moroccan and Egyptian rose essences.
This oil blend has a silky feel and it's "cosmetically elegant," as the experts say — it absorbs quickly and easily into my skin. As for its smell, the frankincense note is soothing yet more subtle than the rose, which smells honeyed and lush. If you're like me and you enjoy any kind of rose-scented daily ritual, you'll be in sensory heaven when you try this oil.
Have you ever tried a rose-perfumed product on your face, or am I alone in this obsession? Feel free to comment!