By Louise Kestrel
Ah, Switzerland. The very name conjures up images of crisp Alpine air and rosy cheeked milkmaids running through fields of edelweiss. So it comes as no surprise that when Swiss High Performance Beauty Care launched two new lines, they would include the benefits of the fresh herbs, seasonal plants and Alpine waters the country is famous for. The company has created two distinct lines, both of which Eluxe tested.
Super Stem Cells: Luana
Every product in this line aimed at mature, sensitive skins combines apple stem cells, organically grown edelweiss and Swiss glacier water to form the basis for day creams, serums, hand cream and night creams.
Completely free of nasty chemicals such as parabens, formaldehyde and halogen organic compounds, the apple stem cells have been known to aid in the regeneration process of skin, while the edelweiss acts as an anti-oxidant.
Beautifully packaged in simple glass containers, we do wish the cardboard boxes and cellophane enveloping these were made from recycled materials (or disposed of altogether), and there really is no need for the paper insert to the products, since information is written on the box anyway, but the jars are lovely enough to be proudly displayed on a bathroom shelf and can easily be recycled.
I tried the Pro-Age Night cream by Luana, and found the texture to be light and easily absorbed. However, the product is heavily perfumed, which I found to be a bit irritating. There were also some dubious ingredients on the box: although there are no parabens or other specific chemicals now considered seriously harmful, there are several here that I would personally question, including sodium hyaluronate, PEG-8 Ester and phenoxyethanol, which are known to cause contact dermatitis and skin irritations in some people.
Plus Jolie with Joline
Joline is packaged similarly to Luana, but the range is far more comprehensive, and includes cleansers, body oils, skin tonics and lightening creams as well as the usual range of day, night and hand creams. The target market starts at younger women, who wish to maintain their skin’s health with the Prevention line, and goes up to the 40+ crowd, who should use the Rejuvenation range.
While it may seem impossible to believe that something like a lightening cream could be ‘natural’, the company assures me that the main active ingredients in this are daisy flower (Bellis perennis) and Alpine plants, which counteract hyperpigmentation naturally by helping reduce excessive formation and accumulation of pigment cells.
So far, my skin has no pigmentation issues, so I tried the Lifting Universal Cream, whose key ingredient is Echinacea extract, which, along with glacier water and hexapeptides, are meant to ‘slow the skin’s natural aging process and maintain its resilience, elasticity and moisture to great effect.’ The cream left my skin with a smooth finish, right away: the right side of my face was clearly smoother than the left, which had no cream yet. Impressive!
However, again, this range, like Luana, is heavily perfumed, and again, there is an extensive list of chemicals on the box, including petroleum by-products like mineral oil (which can block pores), and petrolatum.
In short, it seems that although Swiss High Performance Beauty care’s Luana and Joline ranges do give skin good results, smoothing out wrinkles (literally immediately in the case of Joline for me) and delaying the signs of ageing, you’ll have to decide if absorbing the chemicals in these products is worth it—although both ranges claim to be free of harmful ingredients, one glance at the list on the package indicates that there are in fact several possible skin irritants and allergens in both brands, and both are heavy on the Fragrance.
This is a shame; the science behind Swiss High Performance Beauty Care seems aimed at giving results through the power of nature. If only they could exclude all the chemicals, this would be my new favourite brand.