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If you follow me on Instagram, you'll know that Monday Muse has been a staple in my skincare routine over the past few weeks, so it seemed time to sit down with a few more characters and give this brand a full review...
Monday Muse actually only launched in Q3 of last year, and I'd definitely seen them advertise to me on Instagram and I was pretty intrigued; the packaging definitely caught my eye but I talked myself out it because I 'didn't need another oil'. Fast-forward a few months and I was invited to the launch of an exciting new product from the brand and got to hear a little more about how it was founded and its philosophy. Firstly, I really appreciate how well-thought out this line is; I am a little bit tired of brands that churn out dozens of new products a year. For me, there's a lot to be said for indie brands holding their hands up and saying they can't create their own version of every product type under the sun, and instead focusing on bringing something new and interesting to the market. There are only two products in the line so far but you can tell a lot of time and thought has gone into these formulations. The brand was founded by Lune, who has suffered from eczema, acne and perioral dermatitis over the years, and wanted to create beautiful products that support skin health, so there are no fragrant extracts or essential oils in here that are volatile and could cause irritation, which feels like a rarity when it comes to the more luxury end of the market.
Let's start with the original product from the line - I was gifted a mini alongside the serum when it launched but I had to go out and get a 30ml full-sized bottle of the Nectar Vitamin Facial Oil | £48. (The mini is £28 for 15ml.) I really didn't think I needed another face oil, but this one really was something special. This oil is designed to be suitable for acne-prone skin, so the finish isn't overly greasy, it just gives the skin a beautiful glow. I apply it as the final step in my evening skincare routine but I don't see any reason why you couldn't use it during the day if you like using oils in this way. The oils in this product are organically-farmed too, if this is something you're interested in.
This product is formulated with a number of beneficial oils so we'll walk through a few of the highlights for me. Rosehip oil is an old favourite of mine; it's nourishing, it can calm inflammation and there's possibly going to be some benefit in improving the skin's tone and texture. We have hemp seed oil, which is rich in fatty acids that help to replenish the skin. Black cumin oil is also in the mix, which you can definitely smell slightly in the formula; it's not an ingredient I've seen in many skincare products but according to the brand it can be antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. Kalahari melon seed oils also have high antioxidant content, including Vitamin E, which can really help to replenish the skin. Prickly pear seed oil is also high in Vitamin E.
I do have normal-to-dry skin so I had a little browse on the website to read some reviews and there are also a lot from people with oily and acne-prone skin saying this helped with inflammation a lot. I have to agree with that; personally, I've been getting a lot of redness in my cheeks during the hotter weather and this really calmed things down (it also never fails to leave my skin super-soft by morning). If you're oily, you don't have to be afraid of face oils as a blanket rule, and it sounds like this one is about as universal as it gets.
Moving onto the Juice Daily Serum* | £40 | this has been a bit of a revelation for me. It's a product I love to use as the only serum step in my routine but it's also quite unique in the fact that it works on its own but also layers really well with other products. This is a light, hydrating, milky serum that feels like a glass of water for my skin. It hydrates, never feels sticky, makes my skin glow and has a light, slightly milky texture that lets my skin breathe.
This is formulated with a number of really great ingredients. First up we have red algae (some forms of algae can be sensitising for the skin, but not this one of them) which acts as an antioxidant, preventing free radical damage from the environment causing damage to the skin. It may even have some anti-ageing benefits, but more research is really needed to corroborate this idea. We have prebiotics, which encourage skin-friendly bacteria, which in turn can help promote a healthy, balanced skin barrier, potentially reducing redness and dryness. We have centella asiatica, which other K-beauty fans reading will probably already know and love! This plant extract is amazing for redness and irritation, immediately providing soothing relief, and it also has antioxidant benefits. We then have black cumin seed oil, again, and also manuka - apparently this is the plant and not the honey that comes from it, so I'm not sure what the benefits are for the skin compared to the honey, which is antibacterial.
Within this formula, we also have Vitamin B3 and Vitamin B5 - AKA niacinamide and panthenol. Niacinamide is an ingredient that has so many benefits, however it's often formulated at such a high percentage that you're risking a lot of irritation, so I really appreciate a gentle take on it. This ingredient can help regulate oil production in the skin, helping combination complexions find balance, but also has anti-redness and skin barrier-boosting properties. It can have a brightening effect on the skin too, targeting uneven skin tone and it's an antioxidant. Then panthenol is a humectant that attracts water, but it's also great at retaining that hydration in the skin. It also has calming and healing benefits for redness, inflammation or a damaged skin barrier.
This product wraps up everything I want from a not-too-intense non-treatment serum into one formula. It's such a perfect daily serum for hydration and keeping the skin calm and balanced. Personally, I do enjoy a Vitamin C in the AM and my Vitamin A in the PM, but particularly recently I've felt like I needed to give my skin some breaks (mainly when it was really hot, I was getting some inflammation in my cheeks) and this was my go-to. Sometimes I'd layer it alongside my Vitamin C in the morning to give that extra boost of hydration and to keep my skin feeling strong and calm. I love it and will absolutely replace it when I'm done with this bottle.
Overall, I'm so happy with this duo and I can't wait to see where Lune takes the brand next, given the thought that has gone into the formulations so far. Given the focus on balanced, healthy skin, I'm sure whatever Monday Muse launch next will be right up my street!
Have you tried Monday Muse?