By Terry Huile de Rose Firming-Lift Nutri-Regenerating Oil

In 1992, history was made with the concealer. While every woman tries to find that elusive combination of texture (that doesn’t settle) and colour (that doesn’t look raccoon-ish), one French brand packaged up the utilitarian concealer into pen form and won the hearts (and under eyes) of millions. Touche Eclat, anyone? This was followed by an eponymous launch of made-to-measure make-up in 1998, where celebs like Sharon Stone, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Nicole Kidman would have custom created shadows and more and then proprietary colours & their recipes stored on file for future refills. Fans still demanded more. So, the woman behind these pretty legendary ways of creating beauty launched her ‘prêt-a-porter’ line, titled By Terry, named after the 15-year head of YSL Beaute - Terry de Gunzburg.

More intrigue? It’s the first oil that has prompted a flurry of emails sent to this blog and its semi-obsessive author. “What do you think of Huile de Rose?” “Is this worth the splurge?” “When are you going to review By Terry’s face oil?” For a brand that has done very little by way of advertising, I’m actually surprised by how so many readers have been smitten with a product’s pedigree before sampling a sap of Rose from the surrealist bottle.

The production of a great face oil is deeply rooted within the homespun world. It goes beyond the superb but tossable packaging, extends deep into experience of the crafter, and values practice over theory. A few great ones are seldom made in mass production for fear of delivering subpar essentials that may likely even have expired before use. Essences are married rather than blended; they are artful, highly spirited, and beautifully demonstrated. Huile de Rose Firming-Lift Nutri-Regenerating Oil ($106) is all of these and so much more.

Six Rose extracts do not flaunt any sort of overly done sentimentality, but rather flourish with the dainty freshness of their signature crimson, black, white, and even pastel petals. Effervescent in their will, persistent on skin. By Terry chooses to focus on the botanical prowess of the Rose, which includes plant cells that stimulate cell regeneration. The tapestry of extracts melding into a base of Fractionated Coconut & Sunflower Seed Oils include: Canina, Damascena, Centifolia, Gallica Flower, Alba, and Hybrid Flower.

From these, Rosa Gallica is known as "Apothecary Rose" the French rose is a European variety similar to the Damascena, and contains numerous compounds beneficial to the skin, particularly tannins which have a toning effect. It also has the ability to stimulate the skin's natural functions and support its regeneration with copious amounts of Vitamin E. The rest add in Vitamins A, B, C and the usual coterie of fatty acids to plump up skin. Extracts are preferred by the brand’s research lab as these plant cells are created without the taint of solvents or preservatives. In an unconventional leap of logic, the Rose extracts are instead saturated with water, mineral salts, sugar (in its pure form of sucrose) and Vitamins B7 & B8 to ensure the integrity of the blend’s anti-oxidative potency, which serves as a vehicle to boost regenerative activity.

But, because of the collective’s strong moisturizing power, the serum may quite well be suitable for mature or dry skin types. Though my combo skin drank it up without regret. It’s because of its cult fan base and intellectually rigorous roster that Huile de Rose has established itself as a must-try face oil. A tidbit: each bottle has a teensy steel ball inside, which helps to dispense the right quantity when turned upside down allowing a particular amount of the elixir to be dispensed without waste.

Roses were never so palpable. In only the way customary to the virtuous French...

Price: $$$$
Scent Classification: Floral
Viscosity: Medium viscosity (5/10)