We’ve come a long way in a few short years.
Now that everyone is seeking organic, natural products to use on our faces and bodies, Irish skincare is having a major moment.
Not a week goes by when the Yay Cork beauty desk doesn’t receive a new 100% Irish product to try out.
From rich cleansers and plumping face creams to body butters, heavenly oils and hand salves, you need look no further than our rocky coastline to stock your bathroom cabinet with the best organic ingredients available – and without paying over the odds for everyday luxury.
There are so many brilliant Irish brands in fact, that it can be tricky to navigate them all.
If you’re ready to swap your big brand favourites for a natural alternative, these are six tried-and-tested buys that are guaranteed to lure you over to the green side.
1. Green Angel Seaweed Daily Moisture Face Cream
Buy it: €29.95, Kilkenny Shop, Emmet Place
Founded in 2006 by Dublin by Chris Mitchell and Mary Mitchell, Green Angel combines thalassotherapy (the use of seawater and seaweed) with aromatherapy to create luxurious natural products with some unique benefits.
Seaweed harvested off the West Coast of Ireland is packed with vitamins, minerals, iodine, trace elements and iron. Blended with jasmine, neroli and Vitamin E, the Green Angel Seaweed Daily Moisture Face Cream is an absolute treat for the skin and the senses – slather it on and breathe deeply for a mini spa experience every morning.
Right now, if you spend over €60 on Green Angel at Kilkenny Shop, they’ll send you their soothing Seaweed Bath & Shower Gel for free.
2. Moss of the Isles Awaken Body Scrub
Buy it: €50 here
With an ingredient list that looks like it was plucked from a seaside garden, Moss of the Isles Awaken Body Scrub is an unctuous blend of sea salt and Scottish dulse, English peppermint and lavender. The reviving formula sloughs off dull skin (and all lingering traces of last week’s faux tan) leave the skin smooth and supple.
Before you shower, spend five minutes massaging it into dry skin in upward circular movements before rinsing thoroughly. One use per week is plenty to keep your skin glowing.
This gorgeous brand is the brainchild of four international luxury spa and wellness experts, one of whom is Cork’s own Peigín Crowley, who joined forces to source “ethical, sustainable and effective ingredients that would create beautiful, nurturing and healing products”.
3. Holos Get Better Butter
Buy it: €38 here
This plant-based aromatherapy skincare company advises customers to think about skincare as an extension of healthcare.
The collection is multi-purpose so you can use the exfoliant as a mask and slick some of the delicious body oil into your hair when it’s feeling dry.
Made in Wexford, the award-winning Get Better Butter is the perfect everyday balm for dry skin, stretch marks, eczema and psoriasis. A blend of organic shea and cocoa butters, plant oils, juniper and lime, its unisex fragrance makes it a winner for the family remedy cupboard.
The best bit is you can order some samples to test out on your skin first before you commit to the larger bottles – handy if you have sensitive skin.
4. Lucy Annabella Organics Uplifting Treatment Oil
Buy it: £42 here
Lucy Annabella’s ethos of organic luxury is evident in every scent. Owned and run by clinical aromatherapist Colleen Quinn, the Fermanagh-based company makes opulent bath milks, lotions and candles from organic essential oils.
A vibrant blend of spearmint, lemongrass, lime, orange and patchouli, the Uplifting Organic Treatment Oil contains argan, avocado and apricot oils to infuse skin with antioxidant vitamins. This is therapeutic luxury at its best.
5. Kinvara Skincare Eye Wow!
Buy it: €29.95 here
With more than 30,000 fans on Facebook, Joanne Reilly’s Galway based company Kinvra Skincare was born in science – Joanne holds a degree in natural sciences from Trinity College Dublin and a PhD from Manchester Metropolitan University.
Frustrated by the lack of natural products available to suit her sensitive skin, on an expedition to Mauritius, Joanne learned how local people turned to plants as a natural resource and decided to start her own brand of organic, multi-tasking products.
One of her best sellers is the Eye Wow! eye serum, a powerful blend of 12 plant extracts targeting dark circles, fine lines and puffiness, with hydration and comfort in mind. Naturally plumping hyaluronic acid and lifting baobab help brighten, firm and refresh tired eyes.
6. Dublin Herbalists Refreshing Facial Toner
Buy it: €14.95 from Kilkenny Shop, Emmet Place
Everything herbalist and naturopath Claire Brett puts in her gorgeous products is all-natural, and never, ever tested on animals. That means no parabens, sodium lauryl sulfate or other hidden ingredients.
Suitable for all skin types, the Refreshing Facial Toner acts as a shield for pores while brightening up tired or weary skin. The blend of floral waters includes rose and witch hazel, gentle chamomile water, cucumber extract and D-panthenol, which work together to boost skin while maintaining its delicate pH balance.
You can apply it every evening after cleansing to tone, but we keep a bottle at our bedside for a reviving spritz every morning when we wake.