Tested on animals:No
Facial mists are increasing in popularity in the world of skincare, and Kate Somerville is entering the market with its Nourish Hydrating Firming Mist. While this lightweight mist does have some positive qualities, the brand makes a misstep by including multiple potentially irritating ingredients, some with phototoxic potential, and as a result, this earns our lowest rating.
Nourish Hydrating Firming Mist comes in an opaque bottle with a misting spray pump and a plastic cap. The good news is that its packaging will keep the beneficial ingredients included (such as antioxidants beet root and algae) stable, protected from light and air exposure.
The problems with this formula are apparent from the first spray, however. Though the texture is lightweight and silky, it has a strong lavender scent that comes from the inclusion of lavender oil. Though it's not very high on the ingredient list, lavender oil can be a potent skin irritant (see More Info for details). That aside, fragrance can cause problems for sensitive skin, and Nourish Hydrating Firming Mist is quite fragrant.
Another concern is that this also contains sweet orange oil (listed in the ingredients as citrus aurantium dulcis oil), which contains substances that can cause a phototoxic reaction when sun is exposed to skin—and that's even if you're wearing sunscreen. See More Info for an in-depth look at the potential problems sweet orange oil can cause.
The rest of the ingredient list is made up of preservatives, film-forming agents, some skin-identical ingredients (like glycerin and adenosine), and two peptides at the end. Though this is labeled as a hydrating product, those looking for a boost of moisture won't find much benefit here: There is very little in the way of emollients, and this includes two absorbent ingredients that are better suited to products for oily skin. One of those ingredients, montmorillonite clay, is claimed here to "detoxify" your pores, but your skin doesn't need detoxifying (see More Info for details on why beauty products can't detoxify your skin).
Though Nourish Hydrating Firming Mist has a couple of positive qualities (its texture and the inclusion of antioxidants), the potentially irritating ingredients it contains mean it's a product we can't recommend. If you are looking for a facial mist, you can find superior options on our list of Best Toners (which are essentially what facial mists are designed to do!).
- Contains antioxidants like beet root extract and algae extract.
- Packaged in a container that will keep its beneficial ingredients stable.
- Texture is lightweight and silky.
- Contains a fragrant lavender oil, which has the potential to irritate skin.
- Contains orange oil, which can be phototoxic.
- Cannot detoxify pores as claimed.
Lavender Oil: In-vitro research indicates that components of lavender, specifically linalool and linalyl acetate, can be cytotoxic, which means that topical application of as little a concentration as 0.25% causes cell death (Cell Proliferation, June 2004). This study was conducted on endothelial cells, which are cells that line blood pathways in the body and play a critical role in the inflammatory process of skin.
As linalool and linalyl acetate are both rapidly absorbed by skin and can be detected within blood cells in less than 20 minutes, endothelial cells are an ideal choice for such a test (Journal of the Society of Cosmetic Chemists, 1992). The results of this research also demonstrated that lavender has a damaging effect on fibroblasts, which are cells that produce collagen.
The fragrance constituents in lavender oil, linalool and linalyl acetate, oxidize when exposed to air, and in this process their potential for causing an allergic reaction is increased (Contact Dermatitis, 2008).
If you're wondering why lavender oil doesn't appear to be problematic for you, it's because research has demonstrated that you don't always need to see it or feel it happening for your skin to suffer damage (Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, 2008).
Ingredients That Have Phototoxic Potential: This product contains sweet orange oil, which is loaded with a class of substances known as furanocoumarins (psoralen) and coumarins. These substances are primarily responsible for what's known as a phototoxic reaction when skin is exposed to the sun. The potential result of UV exposure while wearing this product—even when wearing a broad-spectrum sunscreen, as none are 100% effective—is that skin may become discolored (Journal of Food and Agriculture, 2013 and Acta Dermato-Venereologica, 2007).
That's aside from the irritation potential of these essential oils, which is a result of their fragrance compounds (fragrance-free is the best way for all skin types to go for all skin types) that can damage healthy collagen production and impair skin's ability to heal (Food and Chemical Toxicology, 2008 & American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2003).
Why Beauty Products Can't Detoxify Your Skin: Despite the claims of many a cosmetics company, you cannot "detox" your skin. In fact, brands making this claim never specify which substances their product supposedly banishes—which makes sense, as your skin isn't capable of storing any sort of toxin. An actual toxin is a poison, and we're talking REAL poisons, such as those produced by plants, animals, or insects (think snake venom or bee stings).
So-called toxins cannot leave your body through the pores or through your skin, whether via sweat or other means—they're filtered, broken down, and removed by the kidneys and liver. Heavy metal toxicity, for example, can't be "sweated" or otherwise drawn out of skin; this requires medical treatment to remove them from the body.
Regardless of the skin concern you're battling, "toxins" aren't to blame—and if you're serious about wanting results, stick to what the research says really works (and ignore fantasy claims about "detoxifying" cosmetic products).