It’s no secret that I am rather obsessed with skincare, so when this über-luxurious mask from Lancôme arrived, I may have gotten a little giddy with excitement. Maybe even a lot. Once that was out of the way, it was down to business; but first …
Insane, right? I was [almost] afraid to use it, but I’m nothing if not always willing to play guinea pig for you guys. So, the million (or in this case, $450) dollar question: is Lancôme’s Absolue L’Extrait Ultimate Rose Serum Mask worth the hype? Short answer is YES. And I apologize in advance for your soon-to-be dwindling bank account.
For previous reviews from this brand, click the Lancôme tab
Absolue L’Extrait Ultimate Rose Serum Mask (CAN $450.00) | Housed in a sturdy gold-coloured box, the cover lifts to reveal a jar of rose pearls, along with a mixing bowl & spoon. The pull-out drawer at the bottom holds 14 tubes of the serum base which gets added to the pearls. In effect, this is a mask that has been specifically created to be prepared just prior to application, thereby maintaining the integrity of all active ingredients in order to deliver maximum skincare benefits.
“The membrane of the Pearls is broken down by the Serum Base, which contains a specific salt for this purpose. The Pearls then release precious and fragile rose oil extracts to create the magic of the mask’s final composition”
Without getting into too much scientific detail, this mask is based upon the brand’s Rose native cells technology, a biotechnological active ingredient with extraordinary regenerating potential. Each Ultimate Mask Rose Pearl is individually formulated — drop by drop — using microfluid technology, an avant-garde encapsulation technique that has been patented ten times around the world. This method protects the precious active ingredients and prevents them from becoming damaged, thus preserving their potency. As the pearls come in contact with the serum base, they dissolve to release their fragile (but highly effective) rose oil extracts.
The application method couldn’t be simpler; You start by taking one spoonful of the pearls and placing them in the bowl; they should create an even layer in the specifically made depression at the bottom of the bowl. You then twist open the top of one tube of the serum base and pour the contents all over the pearls. Mix/combine the two then let them sit for 3 minutes (this is the time needed for the serum base to dissolve the pearls’ outer membrane). Prior to application, you mix the contents thoroughly and apply to your face & neck. The detailed instruction booklet included also provides diagrams for Lancôme’s renown application/massage method. Leave the mask on for 5 minutes, then remove with a dampened cloth (not a cotton pad, as stated in the booklet).
The first thing you’ll notice, is the incredible fresh floral/rose scent — seriously intoxicating and nowhere near the noxiousness of artificiality. Unlike other thick/paste-type masks, this one is definitely more ‘watery’ and that one spoonful of pearls + serum base makes plenty — almost enough for two people, in fact (but I still use it all just for me). Using a muslin and/or wash cloth for removal not only makes the entire process easier and less messy, but also provides stimulation to the skin along with exfoliation — just go gently with it. When all was said and done, I was literally dumbfounded by the results: after just one use, my skin looked … renewed, is the best way I can describe it. Bright, even-toned, smooth, rosy, and even those dreaded fine lines and enlarged pores visually diminished. Unbelievable.
Obviously because of the cost, a part of me actually wanted this to be one big whopper of a fail, but the truth is that this may very well be the best mask I’ve ever tried — and I’ve tried plenty. The good news is that this isn’t one of those products you need to use monthly (unless your budget allows for that — then by all means, indulge) but rather something you can incorporate seasonally into your skincare regimen, or even for those times when you feel your skin is looking totally lacklustre and can use a boost. Final word: start saving up or add the Absolue L’Extrait Ultimate Rose Serum Mask to your Christmas list (hint, hint).
Available at select retailers including The Bay & online
Press sample/As always, all opinions are my own