In partnership with La Mer
If you're familiar with La Mer, then you'll know that the brand's original Crème de la Mer moisturising cream is unique. Based on Dr Max Huber's formula created to heal chemical burns, this isn't your ordinary moisturiser. In fact, its texture is more like a concentrated balm.
Porcelain white, the cream is thick - almost tacky. But when you scoop a pea-sized amount from its tub, it dissolves into a silken salve as it matches the warmth of your fingertips. It's neither greasy or heavy, and when applied correctly, it lifts and luxuriously softens. Almost instantly.
But of course, as Crème de la Mer is unique in its form and ingredients, it's also unique in the way it's applied. Getting the full benefit of this balm-like moisturiser requires a ritual. A special application technique to activate the ingredients and help them penetrate deeper into the skin where they can do their best work.
Makeup artist and beauty expert Filomena Natoli has been using Crème de la Mer on her model clients and on herself for most of her career. Since the moment she first discovered Crème de la Mer - a moment which she recounted to RUSSH Editor in Chief Jess Blanch on RUSSH's Instagram Live - La Mer has been a mainstay on the shelves of her bathroom cabinet. And the brand's skincare rituals have become part of her beauty routine. In a masterclass on RUSSH's Instagram, Filomena takes us through the particulars of her routine, explaining the details of the application technique for Crème de la Mer.
An advocate for double cleansing, her routine starts with The Cleansing Oil to remove makeup and the impurities of the day. Her second cleanse is courtesy of The Cleansing Lotion which helps to protect the skin's barrier function. The Treatment Lotion is next, an essence that helps hydrate and prepare the skin to absorb the rest of your skincare. Lip care is an important step for Filomena. She applies The Lip Volumizer directly after The Treatment Lotion to allow the lips to absorb the product, while the rest of the skincare is applied. The Eye Concentrate is her next product. Since the skin around the eyes is thinner compared to the rest of your skin, an eye product is crucial. She gently massages this into the eye area with the applicator, and with a rotating motion for best effect.
All of this is in preparation for the original Crème de la Mer. Using the spatula that comes with the product, she scoops out a pea-sized amount. From here, she applies the product to her fingers where she massages the product, using the heat from her hands to activate the key ingredient of the Crème - The Miracle Broth.
"Once you activate the miracle broth in this formulation, you get this beautiful luminous finish," she explains.
She rubs and massages the Crème in her hands until the product becomes translucent, and it is at this point that it can finally be applied to the skin. Crème de la Mer is not rubbed into the complexion, it is pressed, gently but firmly into the major plains of the face. Filomena pats the product onto her skin, encouraging it to penetrate and without pulling or tugging at the face. Whatever product is left over, she presses into her neck.
For moment when her skin is red or needs extra care, she has a selection of products to follow the Crème de la Mer ritual. The Concentrate is one she uses when her skin is irritated and needs calm. A regular on set, she also often uses The Concentrate on her clients when a velvet-like skin finish is requested. For maximum hydration, she will add The Renewal Oil. Shake to activate, all you need is two drops to help seal in hydration and for a dewy finish to the complexion.
For Filomena, this ritual is all about creating glow, whether you want to wear makeup or not. "It gives your a beautiful, healthy, pearlescent radiance," she says.
You can watch her skincare routine and application rituals here.
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Photography by Myles Kalus (@photomyles)
Editing by Anne Thu Pham (@annethupham)