How do you know which beauty trends are a fad and which have staying power? It’s always a bit of a gamble knowing which ones to invest in, from K-beauty which has influenced our skincare routine for a good few years and looks set to continue doing so, to vitamin C-rich products which are some of the most searched-for beauty items online. And what about CBD skincare? When I first came across the trend to infuse CBD oil into skincare products I initially filed it as a fad, however with its anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-ageing and anti-bacterial benefits becoming ever more popular, I’ve been proven wrong. You will find plenty of CBD skincare products on the market with varying degrees of CBD concentration and ingredient quality, but what is emerging is a move away from its hippy image by bringing in a more scientific approach. New UK-based Grass Roots is doing just that, promoting itself as a skincare range using cosmeceutical active ingredients with CBD. Founded by three women from the beauty sector, Grass Roots promises the benefits of CBD with the potent results of active ingredients. When I was approached by their PR agency about trying out some of their products, that combination piqued my curiosity so I agreed to trial their retinol products.  

What is CBD?

Short for cannabidiol, CBD is a non-psychoactive compound derived from the cannabis plant. As Grass Roots explains, ‘The part of the cannabis plant that affects the psychosis of the mind and gives the feeling of being high is from THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). CBD and THC act in different ways on different receptors in the brain and body’. In short, CBD does not get you high. There are different types of CBD, some of which contain traces of THC, but Grass Roots use Isolate which contains 99.9% pure CBD with 0% THC – no clue as to what’s in the remaining 0.1% though. With its anti-inflammatory properties I can see why CBD is such a popular skincare ingredient, helping to soothe skin and reduce redness. Add to that its anti-bacterial properties (great for acne sufferers) and richness in anti-oxidants, encouraging collagen reproduction which results in the anti-ageing benefit of reducing fine lines, and you’ve got a potent skincare ingredient.

Grass Roots Retinol Repair Cream

I received from the brand two products to trial, both containing retinol. This is another results-driven ingredient that’s worked its way into many anti-ageing products. Derived from vitamin A, it speeds up cell turnover and stimulates collagen to reveal newer, brighter skin. The result is improved skin tone, unclogged pores and reduced fine lines. It sounds amazing but what’s always held me back from applying retinol is the risk of skin reacting and increasing its sensitivity to harmful UV rays. The latter can be resolved by wearing SPF during the day and only using retinol skincare in your evening skincare routine, but I was apprehensive about the former. The overwhelmingly positive comments I’ve heard from retinol users helped me take the plunge and I started using this repair cream every evening after cleansing. Well – what a cream. Looking at the list of ingredients it has all the big hitters rolled into one does-it-all formula: anti-inflammatory CBD, anti-ageing retinol, brightening vitamin C, hydrating hyaluronic acid, strengthening collagen and healing vitamin E. It’s also packed with nourishing oils including my favourite rosehip oil, as well as olive, coconut, avocado oil, apricot kernel and argan oils. That said the repair cream texture is far from greasy, it is a thick cream but sinks into skin surprisingly quickly without leaving an unpleasant residue. I’ve only been using the cream for a couple of weeks but already my skin looks smoother, brighter, with improved tone and reduced scarring. Luckily I’ve not suffered the dreaded reaction to retinol and I’ve been careful to apply a Caudalie SPF every morning. I’m not one to go for expensive beauty products so this is definitely at the pricier end of the spectrum for me, but when I see all the high performing ingredients packed into this formula I can understand why. When using this cream my skincare regime is pared back – my vitamin C serum only makes an appearance in my morning routine now and I don’t add a booster or mix in any facial oils, so with that in mind it’s not a bad offering. This Repair Cream has definitely converted me to the benefits of retinol. 50ml RRP £48.99

Grass Roots Retinol Eye Refiner

Paired with the Repair Cream, this Eye Refiner completes the retinol evening regime. At 0.5% the retinol concentration is lower than in the cream to reduce irritation around the delicate eye area, and as with the cream this formula also contains marine collagen, hyaluronic acid, CBD and a selection of nourishing oils. Additionally you’ll find soothing aloe vera and anti-oxidant green tea extract to smooth and refine the eye area. I apply this lightweight gel all around the eye area, on my dark circles and on my brow bone, but after a few days I find it irritates my eyelids where I suffer from recurring eczema. Applied below the eye area only it has no adverse effects, but out of the two vegan and cruelty-free products it’s the Repair Cream that delivers the most impressive results. 30ml RRP £39.99

Do you use retinol products in your skincare routine? Which ones do you rate? Please leave a comment below to let me know.

Features gifted products.

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