It is much more common for former Russian beauty queens to go into interior or clothes design business than into creating a skincare brand and to be honest, at this stage, I only know of three credible and established abroad but Russian in origination brands-Fresh, which is American based, NuBo, which is UK based and Russie Blanche, French based.
I have heard about Russie Blanche from a girlfriend of mine, who having stayed at the luxuriously redecorated and newly re-opened Le Bristol raved to me almost breathlessly with excitement about the treatments that she had at the hotel’s spa with Russie Blanche products. Russie Blanche? Yes, Russie Blanche my friend said and it was actually started by a Russian former model or something she said. So I decided to investigate, found the site and realised that they were actually sold in a few places in Paris, but not in London. Red cloth waved before the enraged bull wouldn’t necessary prevent him from losing corrida to el toreador, so I e-mailed the site, explaining that I was a journalist and could I possibly place the order.
The staff was charming. ‘Yes, I was told, you can madam, we will quote you the postage costs once you let us know what you want to order’. So I did and within a week I received my two products, together with a gift-a full sized mask and some sample of the nourishing moisturiser. And so the quest to test the products began.
Julia Lemigova, former fashion model and Miss USSR, brand’s creator, was and is passionate about aromatherapy, cosmetics and massage, so having examined the situation in the beauty market, she created Russie Blanche or White Russia ( the term is used to define Russia before the revolution took place or possibly cleansed Russia, as we do love our banyas to cleanse, detox and socialise ), in 2009. Her passion was aided by the French savoir faire and elegance and all the products in the range contain plants and 100% essential oils that help your body to regenerate and de-stress. The products are also free of parabens, artificial colours, mineral oils, silicone or animal attributed ingredients.
The range was created around two main ingredients, Siberian ginseng ( this ingredient exists in the coldest climate conditions and has been known for over 4,000 years in Chinese medicine for its ability to strengthen the body and the immunity system. When applied to the skin it gives it the energy necessary to fight the external aggressions ) and Siberian golden root ( which has been used in Russia for centuries to help increase the longevity, fight stress and tiredness. It has also been used by Russian athletes and Olympians for years during the training in order to help their endurance naturally during stressful competition times ).
The face care line is called ‘Siberian Petals’ and there are six products in it:
–cleanser & toner,
–cleanser & make-up removing jelly ( feels very delicate on the skin, giving it a nice sensations ),
–multi–concentrated revitalising serum for face & eyes,
–revitalising & moisturising cream ( it contains white orchid extract, smells heavenly and not only hydrates your skin, but also gives it a boost of radiance as soon as you apply it ),
–gentle exfoliating cream and
-moisturising mask/ cool effect ( it’s wonderful to use during your bath ritual or if you go to the steam room or banya-it invigorates your face with a gently cooling, almost magical sensation that feels like a delicate cool breeze on your face, while the essential oils of patchouli, mandarin, lemon, geranium and pink pepper berry create an uplifting smelling environment all around you ).
The body range is divided into two subsections,Banya Detox ( heavenly to use in the winter or when you do the actual detox ) and Banya De-Stress.
Banya De-Stress Bath & Shower oil relaxes your senses with a slightly medicinal smell that actually clears the head and makes you peacefully focused. The ingredients and essential oils ( Siberian golden root, macadamia and sweet almond oils as well as essential oils of vetiver, ginger, lavender and bergamot ) work in perfect harmony and with every inhalation you will literary let go of all the days worries and concerns, without even focusing on it.
Banya Detox has two products-Salt Caviar Body Polish and Bath & Shower Oil. I use the scrub twice a week, on the wet skin and its gel like texture feels so great when you dig your fingers into it. It makes the skin glow with health, while you inhale the powerful aromas of Siberian Pine, Eucalyptus and Grapefruit essential oils and start feeling more energised and alive. The skin feels moisturised after it, so you don’t have to apply the moisturizer on top-your skin not only feels great to the touch, but smells beautifully too and that wonderful sensation lingers for a while, until you drift off to sleep.
Banya Detox Bath & Shower oil is a great multi-tasker that will detox, cleanse, tone, purify your skin, as well as distresses your body and revitalise the skin and your senses ( it contains Siberian golden root, as well as juniper, Siberian pine, manadarin and amyris essential oils ).
The products in the range aren’t cheap, ranging from euros 40 to 95 for the face products to 64 euros for the bath oil and 85 euros for the scrub, but they all come in beautiful glass jars ( clear with white tops for the face care and dark green glass with black tops for the body products ) and they will truly change the way you look at your bath and shower rituals. You will slow down and appreciate the time to make yourself healthier, calmer and more beautiful, while the range’s ingredients will work their magic on a much deeper level.