Astara Aroma Nutrient Face & Body Oil

Astara is a niche American brand run by Sunny Griffin, the founder and creative force who started her brand to feed her skin with healthy, organic skin care wares that didn’t irritate her extremely dry skin. Anyone from the mountains of Telluride can tell you how high altitudes lead to extraordinarily dehydrated skin. So, it makes sense that she knows exactly what it takes to make a great oil. A former swinging 60s cover girl, Sunny has a love for all things natural and particularly those holistic treatments leading your soul to a higher sense of consciousness – which is what Astara means in Sanskrit. Yes, she is a pioneer is many ways.

Aroma Nutrient Face & Body Oil ($43) continues this alternative tradition of integrating purely botanicals oils with efficient carrier ones, created from carefully calibrated manufacturing processes. See, what's unique Astara uses lower-temperature, efficacy-preserving processing methods, never exceeding 105ยบ F to ensure the nutritiously fresh, live, active biocultures  will deliver the hearty vitamins and good stuff to skin. Astara actually manufactures their products in pharma labs, not cosmetic ones, to be sure any errant rays of light don’t break down the elixirs and their essential elements.

The body oil - perfectly suited for your practical and beauty needs - begins with Hazelnut Seed Oil, known for its astringent qualities. It is best used for those who have oily skin, but do want to abstain from using oils or fear the commonly misaligned myth of breaking out from oils. Clearly, this entire blog proves otherwise, as I’m as oily as they come. Avocado, Jojoba, Grapeseed, Meadowfoam, Rosehip and Jojoba oils round up the base of moisture and help deliver a slick fixative to dry skin with a medium-bodied supple viscosity. Interesting to note is how Rosehip Oil helps regenerate damaged skin tissues attributed to its high content of unsaturated essential fatty acids, namely oleic (15-20%), linoleic (44-50%) and linolenic (30-35%). They are called "essential" because our body is not able to reproduce them. But, science also shows Rosehip also contains Trans-Retinoic acid, a derivative of Retinol (Vitamin A), which helps significantly reduce photodamage (think age spots, lines, wrinkles, etc.) without the side effects of retinols. The lightly viscous oil is complete with luminous notes of Lemongrass and Lavender, which appear drenched and delicate. Balanced equivocally, the low-key tang of Lemon a sweet nod to the classicism of the subtle, spring herb without appearing as a prickling contradiction. Astara shows us how the most common ingredients can be still be blended into some form of greatness. As such, the uniformly transient scent is delightfully tactile without struggling to prove one absolute rules over the other. Light enough for the face, pretty enough to scent skin.

It’s a rare brand that can mix sexiness with the cumulative power of bio-organics without any of those requisite inane marketing teasers. Astara does this well.