Deep in the heart of Soho, hiding away between Lucy In Disguise and some dodgy looking bars, is a little shop that holds a treasure trove of skincare wonders. I was first introduced to Australian brand Aesop a few years ago and was instantly struck by their simple branding, apothecary-style bottles and functional formulas. If you shy away from fancy bottles, floral scents and fluffy formulas, then Aesop is the anti-beauty range that takes things back to basics. Established in Melbourne in 1987 with a quest to create a range of superior products for the skin, hair and body, Aesop are committed to using both plant-based and laboratory-made ingredients of the highest quality and proven value – particularly those with the greatest anti-oxidant properties.
Their approach to skincare is utterly refreshing, their ethos totally underlined by their Australian heritage; I love this quote, which sums up the brand so well: “We advocate the use of our products as part of a balanced life that includes a healthy diet, sensible exercise, a moderate intake of red wine, and a regular dose of stimulating literature.” The brown glass bottles may look uber stylish, but their function is to prevent the formulas from spoiling in the hot Australian sun – you can be assured they’ll last as long as they were intended, with no discolouration or impact on performance, no matter where you place them in your bathroom. Although they do offer a range of hair products and fragrance, it’s the skin care that’s the hero for me.
I adore their tough and hardworking face masks, as well as their Parsley Seed range of cleansers… They’re effective without stripping the skin, as well as not overwhelming you with a strong sickly scent, making these the perfect unisex products that you won’t mind the man in your life pinching. They’re not a budget range by any means (prices range from £10 to over £90, with the average cream setting you back around £35,) but if you’re looking for really effective, simple skincare then they’re well worth a look.