AMBAR Beauty Review

AMBAR is moss’s little sister- but there’s nothing “little” about the performance and efficacy of these products. The founder Celestyna Higgins calls them “skincare unicorns” because they are filling holes in the green beauty world instead of saturating the already existing product categories. For example, instead of adding a balm to the AMBAR line- a product that is saturating green skincare right now- she decided to create multitasking products such as a hydrating gel and moisturizing primer.

I have tried the whole line, and I have to say, they have become part of my all-time favorites. I’m very picky about which brands and products I use for my skin, and this is one of the lines that I trust for the job- I use these products every day. Don’t be fooled by their appearance either, they last quite a while since a little product application goes a long way. OH and…let’s talk about the colors on these products…all natural and so pretty!

Hydrating Mineral Gelee ($55)

This product is a gel with absolutely no sticky/tacky feel when it absorbs into your skin- how rare is that. It sinks very easily into the skin, and I find myself grabbing this product every day to form micro-emulsions with other products. Usually I’ll mix this only with Aurum facial oil from the moss skincare line, but lately I’ve been adding the Daily Antioxidant primer or the Soothing Moisture Liquid to this mix too. I won’t always do this, but depending on how my skin is, I’m finding that at times creating micro-emulsions with products works better for me than layering them on individually. This is not to say that you need to mix 10 products and assume this is better for your skin, but I find I usually use 3-4 different products in the a.m and p.m. and I prefer to mix some together first instead of layer each one on individually. If I want to apply a spot treatment or an exfoliating serum like moss’s Illumina, I will apply those first and separately. I have also done a lot of damage to my skin before I switched to non-toxic beauty, thus my skin barrier is compromised, and I will get very oily in the afternoon. I use this, at Celestyna’s recommendation, during the late afternoon to give my skin the extra boost of moisture it needs.

It’s hard to find a true ‘gel’ product in green beauty, and this one is so well-formulated. I love that this product contains zinc and magnesium; both blemish-fighting ingredients. Not only that, Tamarind Seed is actually nature’s hyaluronic acid, an important addition for our skincare routines. A very important note to be mentioned is that you should not be turned off by reading “water/aqua” and “sodium PCA” as the first two ingredients. This is from the founder herself:

“More is NOT always better – with every ingredient there is an optimal range of % usage. Sometimes it is very small! One of the most powerful ingredients in this product is Tamarind Seed Extract and the MAX usage rate is only 1%! At 1% this powder swells and absorbs so much water that it makes a very thick jello consistency. Same with Zinc! It is USUALLY included at 1% – we are doing nothing unusual and in fact, going to a higher % may be counterproductive.” 

This does not mean you should see a different product from a different brand with seemingly questionable ingredients and assume the same situation as here- judge according to the brand and formulation. There are many companies who use fillers or advertise benefits due to the inclusion of certain ingredients when in actuality they are including them in very negligible portions.

Ingredients: Water/Aqua, Sodium PCA, Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Zinc Gluconate, Magnesium Sulfate, Copper Gluconate, Manganese Gluconate, Dehydroxanthan Gum, Tamarind Seed Extract, Spearmint Oil*, Eucalyptus Oil* {* = Organic/Wildcrafted}

Daily Antioxidant Primer ($72)

More reviews of the product here

This product is fantastic- check out just two of the ingredients featured in this product, as stated on their website: (1) “Dipalitoyl Hydroxyproline  – Plant-Derived Amino Acid With Multiple Times The Antioxidant And Collagen Boosting Power Of Vitamin C” & (2) Dimethylmethoxy Chromanol  – Powerful Antioxidant With Broad Spectrum Free Radical Scavenging Ability.” This isn’t just a primer after all- in the fashion of all AMBAR products and in up-keeping its philosophy of ‘super-multi-fucntional’, this product is (1) moisturizing, (2) a great primer to prepare the skin for makeup application, (3) a silicone alternative, (4) and ALSO protects against the environmental factors of pollution, UV light and free radicals. The addition of Chia Seed Biopolymer helps regulate excess oil production, however since I have very compromised, oily skin, as stated above, I do not notice much of a change in this department. I will still need to blot a few times during the day.  However, since my skin feels smoother, soothed, and moisturized upon application, it is still one of my favorite products from this line.

I will use this product every morning, as well as some nights, in my micro-emulsions or alone. It works beautifully under my makeup for my morning applications, thanks to the inclusion of silicone-mimicking (Bamboo extract / Muru Muru butter) and light-diffusing ingredients (Tonka Bean bioferment). This is what really helps me appreciate the product so much, the substitution of silicone with ingredients found in nature is what makes the formula so thoughtful/creative. With other primers in green beauty, I simply don’t see that same level of creative effort to really convince me to purchase their product. In the case of the Stratus Soft Focus Skin Perfecting Primer from Vapour Organic Beauty, for example, the name is more of a handful than its functions: with its first few ingredients being oils which I get enough of from my skincare products, as well as beeswax which I break out from, I’m not persuaded. In addition, they add silica and tint the product- but my Gressa Serum Foundation already includes silica and has greater pigment, so why would I purchase this product? It could be primers such as this actually do work great to prep the skin, but for me personally, the fact that I’m not only getting an amazing primer in the D.A.P. but also a product that is an antioxidant powerhouse and moisturizer, well it really seals the deal.

As with all her products, you only need a little amount, and it makes all the difference- simply one pump is enough to get the job done. I will also note, however, that the product does finish up rather quickly and I really wish it came in a larger size- 29 mL is too small for me!

Ingredients: Water/Aqua, Lactobacillus/Arundinaria Gigantea (Bamboo) Leaf Ferment Filtrate, Astrocaryum Murumuru Seed Butter*, Lactobacillus/Dipteryx Odorata Seed (Tonka Bean) Ferment Filtrate, Limonia Acidissima (Thanakha) Extract, Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Mauritia Flexuosa Fruit Oil*, Dipalmitoyl Hydroxyproline, Dehydroxanthan Gum, Tamarindus Indica (Tamarind) Seed Extract, Sorbitan Laurate, Polyglyceryl-4 Laurate, Dilauryl Citrate, Dimethylmethoxy Chromanol,  Citrus Bergamia (Bergamot) FCF Oil, Cymbopogon Martini (Palmarosa) Oil*

Micellar Cleansing Water ($59)

More reviews of the product here

Once I heard she was adding rose to her formulation, I knew I had to get it- it smells so lovely. I will either use this in the morning with a cotton pad to cleanse my skin quickly, as a toner, or as a second cleanse to get all the last bit of makeup on my skin from the day. I initially felt nervous using this product solely to cleanse my face in the mornings, but found I experience no breakouts, and my skin feels clean and refreshed afterwords. Make sure to shake the bottle well before you apply!

Ingredients: Water/Aqua, Rose Hydrosol*, Hydrolyzed Viola Tricolor Extract, Sodium Cocoyl Apple Amino Acids, Sodium PCA, Di-PPG-2 Myreth-10 Adipate, Yucca Glauca Root Extract, Sodium Benzoate, Gluconolactone, Bergamot FCF Oil*, Marjoram Oil*, Kaempferia Galanga CO2 Extract, Palmarosa Oil*, Gromwell Root Extract

Soothing Moisture Fluid ($70)

This last product I’m going to talk about is exactly what it says it is: a soothing liquid moisturizer. You actually spray it onto your face and press it in just as any other moisturizer, it’s just not as thick a consistency. In no way does its lack of thickness mean it actually isn’t moisturizing- thanks to the three types of oat extracts included in the ingredients, it definitely is. When my skin is feeling very agitated, or if I have some rashes, this is an absolute savior. My skin is definitely compromised from all the years of abuse it has suffered at my hands, so it drinks up this product. Soothing is the key hero trait of this product here, can you tell? I will also use this in combination with the Hydrating Mineral Gelee in micro-emulsions at times when I need the extra hydration. I actually use these two AMBAR products when I happen to have nasty itchy bug bites too, and I feel so relieved.

Ingredients: Water/Aqua, Avena Sativa (Oat) Oil, Echium Plantagineum Seed Oil, Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Avena Sativa Powder, Sorbitan Laurate, Polyglyceryl-4 Laurate, Dilauryl Citrate, Avena Sativa Extract Powder*, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract*, Dehydroxanthan Gum, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Potassium Sorbate


Final words! Some products I would love to see from this line:

-A cleanser like Micellar but aloe (for example) based instead of water based, so it’s truly a water-free cleansing method; this would be nice alternative for people who are trying a dry oil cleansing method where they want to avoid water to their face

-A foundation! This line is full of skincare unicorns and I can imagine a multi-tasking foundation being a wonderful addition. And since there’s also so many beautiful colors in the product lineup, why not also add multi-tasking, color-correcting concealers to further fill in the rainbow? 😉


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