A cornucopia of WOW for the holidays: Drunk Elephant’s Trunk 5.0

Maybe this is the year where you want to give – to a loved one or to your sweet self – something grand. But it’s not a jewelry or car year. The lucky recipient might be staying put or headed out on a cruise to exotic ports. How do you treat skin under all circumstances, for all seasons? How to pamper and wow someone? Drunk Elephant has created its 5th holiday trunk (get it?) — Trunk 5.0 — and this year is stunning. I was happy to be hosted to experience it!

First, the presentation. Everything is packed into a stand-out Monos suitcase, kitted with the most modern materials and design. They base their line on the Japanese concept of mono no aware, appreciating the beauty in fleeting moments. Deep! They also deplore planned obsolescence, sourcing the finest parts from German, Japan and creating their own to specifications. It has 4 wheels that turn in every direction (great when going down narrow airplane aisles) and a combination lock. There’s a removable pouch and a laundry bag.

Inside the trunk are glorious full sizes (with a couple of sample sized items for the fun of trying.

First is their award-winning Beste No. 9 Jelly Cleanser. This clear cleanser is silky, soothing, gentle, yet effective. It is fragrance free. When you want a simple cleanser — no other action going on to conflict with your treatments — this is the product you want. It’s refreshing!  It has mild surfactants and emollients and no essential oils. It’s suitable for all ages.

If you’re having serious skin issues, one of the samples is E-Rase Milki Micellar Water. It’s a milky cleanser that you shake and apply/remove with a cotton ball. Are you asking yourself, “What is a ‘micellar water’”? It is a cleanser/toner that doesn’t require water to either apply or remove. Some folks have such sensitive skin — or their local tap water is so harsh — that just splashing on or bathing in water over-sensitizes their skin. It’s not creamy or goopy, so you won’t be compelled to rinse it off. Yet, it’s not bracing like an alcoholic toner. It removes makeup, as well as the regular grime that you accrue during the day. Not only is it a product for home, but it’s also a great concept for anytime you’re out: in the car, at the gym, at the beach, etc.

There are times when you want pure hydration: no oiliness, no complex actives (like, don’t go out on a limb with products the day before you might be photographed, for instance). B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum is geared for all skin types. It has a very gentle brightener — pineapple ceremide — plus that well-known skin plumper, Pro-Vitamin B5. You pump out a thin, silky serum that’s instantly absorbed. You’ll be able to apply makeup of any consistency on top immediately, it will not pill or slide. Use a serum as your first layer for post-cleansing treatments. It can be the only product, too. Use it on your face, chest, hands or wherever you need hydration!

Many beauty magazines, including Allure, NewBeauty, InStyle, etc., have given their top awards to T.L.C. Sukari Babyfacial. This is a AHA/BHA skin resurfacer (AHAs and BHAs are two different acids that perform different functions in skincare). It’s a creamy consistency mask that contains glycolic, tartaric, lactic, citric and salicylic acids. This combo rapidly dissolves that thick, distressed layer of skin that creates the appearance of big pores, accentuates wrinkles, leads to breakouts and other problems. Think of the skin of a professional golfer vs. the bookie one who stays indoors. Because there are a lot of active ingredients, they do caution you to not use other potent products at that time or on irritated skin. Also, they recommend you use their Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil afterwards — and even include a trial size in the package.

Protini Polypeptide Cream is a rich consistency cream and a heavy lifter. It adds protein to thin skin — so common in winter — that is aged. Amino acids and growth factors help. It has a touch pop-up applicator. This really helps crepey necks!

Use under it Drunk Elephant’s most powerful product: Protini Powerpeptide Resurf Serum. It contains peptides, growth factors, amino acids and lactic acid. It also features water-boosting ingredients to up the hydration factor in finely wrinkled, sun-damaged, large-pored skin. It pumps out in a thin, milky serum consistency and dries immediately. You won’t have any difficulties applying makeup and it won’t “pill”.

Another many-year running, award-winning moisturizer is Lala Retro Whipped Cream. It’s called a “rescue cream” with 6 African oils and fermented green tea. But it’s so fluffy and light, it’s not greasy at all! If you avoid moisturizer, because they feel too oily or waxy, this is the product for you. With its touch pop-up applicator, it keeps fresh and clean. It’s very soothing and hydrating, suitable for your face and whole body.

Retinol is widely considered among dermatologists the best non-invasive anti-aging ingredient. A-Passioni Retinol Cream is a pump-out thin, yellow cream that can be used day or night. With retinol (Vitamin A), it’s advisable to be very proactive with sunscreen.You only need to use a pea-sized drop — or smaller — to see its effectiveness.

T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum is a thin, clear serum for those nights when you aren’t using TLC Sukari Babyfacial. Use acid in proper proportions! It’s formulated with an AHA/BHA blend of glycolic, lactic, tartaric, citric and salicylic acids, and blended with raspberry extract to dissolve dead skin cells while you sleep. It also has ingredients to calm irritations and reduce the appearance of capillaries.

C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream has a pearlized, serum-like consistency. It really acts instantly to soothe the dry, crinkly areas around the eye without being drippy, goopy or sweaty feeling. It won’t seep into your eyes and you can apply makeup over it almost instantly. They describe it as “featuring a brightening combination of eight peptides, five forms of vitamin C and cucumber extract for firmer, stronger-looking skin around the eye area”.

One of Drunk Elephant’s innovative new products is C-Firma™ Fresh Day Serum that you mix yourself before the first use (and then it stays fresh). Vitamin C products are known to be volatile and lose their efficacy if not packaged to optimum protection. It comes in two parts. The serum, which pumps out bubbly and a little creamy, has fruit enzymes, 15% l-ascorbic acid, 0.5% ferulic acid and 1% Vitamin E. Let it dry a couple of minutes before applying your makeup. This product helps with that “muddy” look you might have or crispy top layer of skin, even after good cleansing, exfoliating and masque routines.

Slaai™ Makeup-Melting Butter Cleanser is for deep-cleansing and removing makeup. You can stroke a thin film or dig in. Rich in fruit extracts and oils – like borage, strawberry and watermelon seed – it liquifies to a milk consistency when water is applied. So, it’s not a huge cleansing project to remove the remover. I like spraying on some Sweet Biome Fermented Sake Spray afterwards.

There are also some sample sachets tucked inside that are so handy to have, wherever you go!

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