RRP: £5/65g; £28/225g
--What does the promo say?--
"The Crystal Peel Exfoliating Soap Body Bar delivers the benefits of professional microdermabrasion in the shower with a quick exhilarating lather and is great for men and women. The soap's brisk polishing action helps stimulate new collagen production and buff away dull, dry skin. It also helps to even out hyperpigmentaion. Ideal for use before spray tanning, waxing or shaving. Clinically proven to treat folliculitis (ingrown hair) and helps to prevent keratosis pilaris (KP), eczema, psoriasis, stretchmarks and cellulite."
My soap came in a cute little blue see-through bag (thanks, Indulgence Spa Products!), with the soap wrapped in a layer of plastic and a blue and white loop of paper, which keeps things very sweet and simple. I see that when you order this online (from www.menareuseless.com, where only the 225g version is available, or from www.indulgencespaproducts.co.uk from September 1st 2012), the soap also comes with a soap dish, which would have been VERY handy for me as I was constantly trying to wedge it in somewhere in the shower where parts of the bar wouldn't be dissolved (and thus wasted).
Once you've got your skin wet under the shower, rub the bar slowly over your body skin (note: do not use on face). You don't need to scrub as the bar does the work for you. This is easy to get your head round (and your hands, thanks to the bar's curved ergonomic design). The bar doesn't make much lather when rubbed over the skin, but more can be created when you massage your skin with your hands, going over where the bar has just been. This makes the experience indulgent as well as functional, and it's easy to rinse off afterwards. You can follow with other shower gels or body moisturisers if liked.
The bar itself is a dull grey colour, with small hard particles being visible. On the skin, no coloured residue is left, and the white lather washes off easily too.
Just smells of minerals more than anything else, which in a way shouldn't be surprising given the prevalence of corundum (or alumina) crystals. However, the other main ingredients (olive oil, vitamin E, aloe vera, and shea butter) were not at all detectable.
--Texture and consistency--
Unlike with some body exfoliators, where the effect is underwhelming, Crystal Peel's Body Bar gives a truly satisfying level of exfoliation. Those with sensitive skin may find the bar too hard or harsh, but it ultimately depends on the kinds of treatments you like. With a texture reminiscent of hard sand, it still manages to treat skin gently - used properly, it shouldn't leave skin feeling or looking inflamed or irritated.
--Effects on the skin--
I seem to suffer permanently with dry feet, and have tried many body bars and exfoliators in the past to combat this, with only limited success. Quite often the artificial 'exfoliating beads' that are present in these products do very little, and when the bars do a bit more, they lose structural integrity far too quickly even in a tin, box or tray, meaning that you waste a lot of product. None of these shortfalls exist with Crystal Peel's bar - you get effective exfoliation that banishes dry skin without everyday use, and even the smallest bar will last many weeks. You are also left with a smooth finish whereby itching is reduced.
--Value for money--
Plenty of brands offer exfoliating bars, from high street giants such as Lush and Soap & Glory to luxury brands such as Molton Brown and Bliss. From the outset, they seem to be better value for money - you can get a lot more than 65g for £5 with the vast majority. However, to me results like Crystal Peel's can't be argued with - I noticed an immediate as well as an ongoing difference, and when you have a constant beauty problem, you are inclined to stick with the one thing that seems to fix it. For that reason I would purchase this product again if I needed it - assuming it hasn't sent the dry skin packing completely.
Crystal Peel Microdermabrasion Exfoliator
For Men Microdermabrasion Pre-Shave Formula
Crystal Peel Collection Gift Set
Crystal Peel Lip Lift Plumper
Crystal Peel Vitamin E Lip Therapy
Crystal Peel Lip Renewal Exfoliator
Crystal Peel Lip Care Collection
*all available from http://www.crystalpeel.org/ecommerce/