…between the two of us, we can really work our way through (nearly) a whole product line. Some may call it addiction or obsession, but we call it…research.
Kahina Giving Beauty is a brand that we as a green beauty blogging duo (read: seestars) have coveted since we launched Unsullied back in November 2013. Has it been that long? Oh my.
Jennifer dove right into it shortly after we launched and bought/reviewed Kahina’s eye cream, and gave a great primer on the brand in general. Check it out. The basics: Kahina = a high quality argan oil-based line that’s also mission-based, empowering and giving back to the Berber women who harvest and produce the argan oil. Pretty freaking awesome. Cue the music: These are a few of our favorite things…
Fast forward to a few months ago, when we worked with Kahina’s team to identify some products from across their line that would work with our individual skin types and needs (and wants…). We each sampled a handful of products, *including* their liquid gold argan oil – the lynchpin of the entire line – and are sharing with you the best of what we think Kahina has to offer! These are not budget products, so beware – but Kahina is doing some great things by offering fair wages to the women who extract their argan oil. That’s worth paying for.
In addition to testing out the two products that I review below, I also tried the Fez Body Serum, which didn’t totally delight me in the scent department. But these two products delighted me in the…”everything” department. All the departments. They’ve both been indispensable for dealing with winter weather and subsequent skin dryness. THE BOMB.
Kahina’s argan oil ($36 for 30 ml) has been a wintertime savior. I’ve swapped it into my routine every night before bed, applying it all over my face as a moisturizer. My dry skin, courtesy of the frigid air and current Siberian conditions in my city, has largely subsided. High-fivin’ myself!
Of course, this isn’t just a wintertime oil. We’ve blogged a while back about how argan oil is truly indispensable in any natural skincare routine. It’s more than multipurpose…it literally does everything. Hair. Nails. Face. You could probably use it to silence a squeaky door hinge, though that would be an expensive fix.
How is Kahina’s argan oil different than others I’ve tried? It’s noticably more luxurious. By that, I mean it’s lighter and more silky than other more wallet-friendly options out there. It absorbs super quickly and moisturizes immediately. I feel so spoiled now!
The quality of argan oil is really all about the extraction and processing methods. First, you need a satisfactory argan nut: one that’s organic, from a nutrient-rich region, and that hasn’t been munched on by goats (being serious. You are competing with goats for argan nuts). Then, the extraction and storage method needs to be precise. Before looking into Kahina’s methods, I thought that cold-pressing was the only factor that made for high-quality argan oil. But Kahina notes that harvested nuts need to be dried in the sun, de-pulped and cracked by hand…and then machine cold-pressed…in short, this is no easy process, and from what I’ve read, Kahina is taking the time to get it right. Which is why their price tag is higher than bargain brands. NO GOATS ALLOWED.
You know you liked a product when it’s GONE. And my sample size cleanser is gone. A single tear is rolling down my cheek as I type this. RIP, little Kahina Facial Cleanser bottle. You were a fighter. A fighter of the horrible dry skin that plagues me as soon as winter hits: Kahina’s Facial Cleanser ($56 for 200 ml) arrived JUST IN TIME to save me. It’s a silky, opaque cream cleanser that gently removes makeup and left me with a moisturized layer, instead of a tightened complexion. Full of Kahina’s signature argan oil, it also contains aloe (the first ingredient), sunflower seed oil and glycerin. Thumbs up. Your winter skin will NOT feel like a flaky pastry.
It has a subtle, sweet scent like most of the products form Kahina’s line, courtesy of neroli essential oils. I’ve found that neroli lends the scent to most of my favorite-smellin’ products, like Herbivore Botanicals’ toner & body oil. Big fan over here.
While using this on the daily, I swapped in a mild exfoliating cleanser (One Love Organics’ Brand New Day is great) every few days to remove that feeling of buildup.
Last, unrelated thing(s) I’ll say about Kahina: The Erica Tanov x Kahina collaboration is beautiful! Those limited edition, vibrant, woven clutches packed with Kahina products?! NOT TO MENTION: the kaleidoscopic argan oil SOAPS? These two products make me feel like I totally blew it on gift-giving this past holiday. Kahina is *killing* the design game these days. And…the retail monster inside of me is starting to rumble just looking at these. HELP.
The Kahina Antioxidant Mask ($62 for 50 ml) is a little piece of indulgent heaven. Perfect for all skin types, I have enjoyed this mask, down to the very last little bit I could get out of the jar. Made with argan oil and silica-rich rhassoul clay from the Atlas mountains in Morocco, I can attest that the ritual of putting it on your skin, taking in the gorgeous, silky texture, and experiencing the calming eucalyptus and mint is a truly transformative experience. I felt the way Joan Crawford did in the beginning of “Mommie Dearest” with all her beauty masks and so forth…you know, before things go insane. Either way, it was divine, and I have felt like a million bucks every time I use this mask. With it’s potent antioxidants to stimulate collagen production and it’s nourishing trace minerals, This is a detoxifying face treat that will help improve the quality of your skin when you’re in the mood for a little extra self-care. I savor it maybe two times a month with some of my other favorite beauty regimens (chocolate), and a little hot ginger tea (wine).
The Kahina Eye Serum ($78 for 15 ml) is fast absorbing: perfect under makeup. It’s so easy to dispense with its little pump. The serum has a cooling nature to it and works really well in the morning to wake up your puffy, angry eyes. (Angry at you for waking up so early, they want to sleep in!) Virtually without scent, this no-nonsense eye product will help you with fine lines and dark circles. The texture is a little too thin for me to use at night, I reserve the big guns for that, but truly an great find for anyone with “morning face.” (Come on, I can’t be the only one, can I?)
Kahina’s Serum ($90 for 30 ml) for your face comes in a glass bottle with a little eye dropper. True to it’s name, this is very much a serum as opposed to an oil, although it contains many powerhouse oils in its blend. The recuperative properties of organic argan oil, boosted by organic sea buckthorn seed oil, carrot seed oil and organic coffee oil (yes, coffee oil!) all help your skin to see it’s true glowing potential. On top of this being a great anti-ager, my favorite thing about this serum is its calming properties. It’s safe to use on flaky, irritated skin, which is something I personally struggle with in the extremely arid climate I live in. A few drops when I wake up in the morning and a few drops at night before bed is a cocktail for smoother, healthier skin. A great find for this year, when I really watched my skin change from oily with mild acne to dryer with a tendency toward eczema. Ah, growing older…
You guys: since this is a long entry, we didn’t paste in all of the product ingredients like we usually do. Peep the product links above for ingredient info. It’s all there on Kahina’s website!
**Kahina products were generously sent to us for review by the product manufacturer. Check out our policy on product reviews.