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I’m usually not one to freak out over expensive, overpriced skin care — aka, you’ll rarely see me recommending exorbitantly-priced brands. (Although, if a La Mer rep is reading this, I would happily accept some samples, if you think that might change my mind.) In fact, many of my favorite brands are ones you’ll find in your local CVS, like CeraVe, Neutrogena and Thayer’s.
But, as love stories with new beauty products so often begin, I was in the checkout line at Sephora one day when I decided to pick up a “mini” jar of Charlotte Tilbury’s Magic Cream, which retails for $29.(A one-ounce jar retails for $64, and the larger 1.7-ounce jar retails for $100 — a price point that’s definitely a splurge to me when it comes to skin care.) I was leaving for a weekend trip and thought a travel-size moisturizer was just a convenient purchase. But little did I know, I was about to be hooked for life.
While my bank account might not like the Magic Cream, my complexion definitely does. I initially started using it as a night cream, but I soon couldn’t resist using it as often as I possibly could, now slathering it on morning and night. And, yes, I can confirm that you can use it as a day cream under makeup, too.
Some of the qualities that make the Magic Cream, well, magic: It’s luxurious-feeling, leaves skin feeling seriously silky soft and it smells amazing. (It’s lightly floral scented with rose, magnolia and camellia oils, so if you have sensitive, fragrance-averse skin, this might not be for you.)
But the best thing about Magic Cream, as far as I’m concerned, is the irresistible story behind it. Before launching her eponymous beauty line in 2013, Charlotte Tilbury worked as a model-favorite makeup artist to celebrity clientele, with a roster that included supermodels like Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell. (NBD.)
“I’ve been fortunate enough to work with some of the biggest celebrities and supermodels in the world over my 28-year career,” Tilbury told me. “I wanted to decodify my red-carpet and runway secrets for everyone, no matter who you are or what age you are.”
And it all started with the Magic Cream. “I used to mix it by hand to create the perfect formula that would instantly turn around and transform the models’ skin backstage during Fashion Month or ahead of a big red-carpet event,” Tilbury said. “I really needed a product that gave immediate results.”
And it does. Yes, it sounds crazy — and a little too good to be true. But if you’re like me, you may notice a refreshed “lit from within” glow, as Tilbury herself calls it, after only one use.
That’s probably because the cream has a list of super powerful ingredients, like hyaluronic acid, which keeps your skin ultra-hydrated; aloe vera to calm redness and irritation; vitamin C for stimulating collagen; rosehip oil, which is good for reducing sun damage and inflammation; and more ingredients, including shea butter, and vitamin E. Essentially, it drenches your skin in moisture, leaving it supple and glowy almost immediately.
Like any other moisturizer, you’ll want to use it a.m. and p.m. after cleansing and toning. You can add a serum in there between toning and moisturizing, too. And remember to always follow it up with sunscreen in the morning.
No matter who you are, you can get in on the Magic Cream magic. In other words, it’s a great gift idea for any gender. “I’m always hearing stories of celebrity couples fighting over a jar in the bathroom,” Tilbury said.
Even at a pretty price point, Tilbury’s Magic Cream just further proves you can get glowy, gorgeous, celeb-level skin without spending Kardashian-level money on facials or fillers every month. And that’s my kind of skin care.
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