As promised in my recent Insta video, this post is dedicated to a Russian ‘first’ – and no, I am not talking about President Putin. I mean a luxe natural skincare brand Berezka Lab. Only launched a couple of years ago by Dana Sagidullina, her passion for family life and nature informs her lifestyle choices and product creation. Having spent a few years living and working in Asia and increasingly appreciating a close connection between nature and human beings, Dana was determined to create skin, hair and body products that will give consumers the best of what nature has to offer. In Asia women have been using plants, oils and essences for centuries in their beauty rituals, so Dana wanted to create products that modern women can use with pleasure, while also noticing visible results on their skin.
In some ways Dana views brick walls as opportunities to levitate and extend one’s abilities and I am happy to see that BL is getting a much deserved spotlight in the Russian press, which has been relatively lukewarm when it comes to the subject of genuine natural beauty brands. Single-handedly Dana seems to be changing perception that natural products are hippish and ineffective by sourcing high-quality ingredients and expertly creating the products that make you pause and appreciate the awesome beauty of what nature gives us so abundantly. With 100% natural formulas and no synthetic ingredients, cold-pressed plant oils, extracts, clays and essential oils allow you to create efficient and indulgent beauty rituals to nurture your inner goddess in the way that won’t have a negative impact on your long-term wellbeing.
Berezka Lab Day Serum, 30ml, 4280 Russian roubles (appr. £54, depending on conversion rate)
With an impactful, but unobtrusive herbal scent and rich texture, this day serum is a combination of 15 plant and essential oils, which hydrate and protect your skin during the day. Rich in photo-nutrients and protected by dark photo glass, that prevents formula oxidation & ultraviolet light from penetrating of all the BL products, organic ingredients help support skin’s hydro-lipid balance and assist your body’s natural regeneration process.
In combination all of the ingredients prevent oxidative stress within your skin and fight against free radical damage, while hydrating the skin and helping it appear more plump. Having used it in the summer, when it was particularly hot, I actually ‘got away’ with just using it on its own and only applying my regular sun protection on top of it and my skin didn’t become dry. And having used it this winter, when it has been particularly cold (I do ‘top it up’ with a Tata Harper illuminating moisturiser or Josh Rosebrook Vital Balm, if I feel that my skin needs it later in the day, I feel that it offers skin ( I have normal/combination skin type) adequate support.
Its rich colour, which reminds me of the colour of the sun just before the sunset above horizon when you sit mesmerised on the beach, it sinks in very quickly and acts as a perfect ‘primer’ before you apply your make-up. I quickly cleanse my skin in the morning, leaving it slightly damp to the touch and then apply about five drops of this serum all over my skin. The amount of ‘drops’ – a little more, a little less – depends on your skin’s needs in the moment in time, as well as your age and skin type. You can also use it around the eyes (as a contact lens wearer I never had any reactions, but of course it’s always best to try a little bit to start with and see how your skin reacts) and extend it to your neckline and decolette.
After a few weeks of regular use in the morning and provided you use the right products for your skin at night time, you might also feel that you need to use less make-up during the day (of course, you might barely wear any already .) Just add a little bronzer or blusher, a lip stain and eyeliner – depends on your preference and you are ready to face the world. For me it really is one of those products that makes me feel good about about myself and the state of my skin. Easy to use, slightly heady when your first smell it, it is one of those ‘must have’ products for me now, something that even in the overly-saturated beauty market isn’t that easy to create, achieve or find.
List of ingredients: Jojoba oil*, Grapeseed oil*, Hazelnut oil*, Avocado oil*, Rosehip oil*, Marula Oil† , Apricot kernel oil*, Vitamin E (non GMO), Rosemary extract, Ylang ylang*, Immortelle*, Frankincense*, Roman Chamomile*, Geranium*, Fennel*, Seabuckthorn extract (* Certified USDA Organic; † Wildcrafted)
Berezka Lab Night serum, 30ml, 5120 Russian roubles (around £64 depending on conversion rate)
Now, bedtime routine and choice of products is particularly important, as it is at night that our body reinvigorates and regenerates itself. Berezka Lab’s night serum is a veritable antioxidant cocktail that was developed with the above said in mind. Dana chose and combined 17 plant and essential oils which promise to address free radical damage, tiredness and signs of stress (having said that, the power & effect of hydration and sleep can never be underestimated, irrespective of your age!).
Lighter in colour than a day serum, this one also has a richer texture, which never-the-less almost instantly gets absorbed by the skin. Rich in photo-nutrients & lipids, this oily serum stimulates cell regeneration, speeds up collagen and elastin production, while also hydrating the skin and making it look more even-textured. Examine your face before you apply it and five minutes after you apply the serum and I hope you will see a plumper, more radiant complexion, before you sign the day off and dose off into the land of peaceful dreams contentedly. In the morning my skin looks plump and energised, something that I don’t take for granted.
This serum also works well on helping heal acne scars and making them less noticeable, but as I haven’t suffered from acne, I can’t comment on that personally, but it is something that is mentioned by Berezka Lab in this product’s description and they aren’t the ones for boastful & unsubstantiated claims.
The way your beauty product smells, helps determine how you feel when using it. If the scent puts you off or you have a bad association with its smell from the past, that’s not going to enhance your skincare ritual. With Berezka Lab you get sensory and olfactory indulgence, which should encourage you to take deeper breaths, helping to focus (morning) or calm (evening) your mind. Deeper breathing also encourages better oxygenation of your body, helping expel toxins from your body more effectively and giving you a better complexion, hopefully, in the process too.
List of Ingredients: Carrot seed oil †, Almond oil*, Evening Primrose oil*, Seabuckthorn oil*, Jojoba oil*, Pomegranate oil*, Grapeseed oil, Vitamin E (non GMO), Fennel*, Palmarosa*, Rosewood*, Turmeric*, Patchouli *, Frankinsense, Grapefruit*, German blue Chamomile*, Neroli*, Rosemary extract* (* Certified USDA Organic, † Wildcrafted).
For more information about the brand please visit Berezka Lab website (it is in Russian, so please e-mail BL team, which can answer your questions in English: firstname.lastname@example.org You can also find them on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube & Instagram )