Approaching 30 is weird.
I see my face changing; there are bags and dark circles and wrinkles under my eyes, and when I look really closely at pictures of myself I can see my right eye drooping ever-so-slightly, and for some reason I’m having an acne attack around my hairline and my skin is dull and blah and just ugh. I see it; and it all makes me feel old, and not like myself.
Thanks to the culture of consumerism we live in, my first thought after a skin-bashing session is always, I can buy a cream for that! And so, I took my first steps into the world of Drunk Elephant.
I've been wanting to try the brand for a while now. Their super-cute, brightly colored packaging is the star of countless Instagram #shelfies that have inspired envy within me... because somehow, in my mind, great packaging must equal great product, right?! The price point kept me from scratching my Drunk Elephant itch, though. For example, their cult-favorite Babyfacial is $80 for 50mL — and for someone with sensitive skin, that’s a lot to spend on a product that might be irritating. Then, hallelujah!, DE started selling trial sizes.
Four trial-sized products — C-Firma Day Serum, B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Gel, Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil, and T.L.C. Sukari Babyfacial — arrived on my doorstep just in time to for me to foist upon them the task of reversing all my newly-discovered signs of aging. My expectations were high, to say the least.
Check out the pics below to see my skin transformation from Day 1 - Day 6. Here’s what I thought after a week of use.
Part of Drunk Elephant's appeal is what they call the “Drunk Elephant Difference.” The company has identified the “Suspicious 6” — AKA, six ingredients they’ve found to be the most irritating on all skin types (Essential Oils, Drying Alcohols, Silicones, Chemical Screens, Fragrance/Dyes and SLS) — and blacklisted them from their products. (I still love essential oils, though.)
C-Firma Day Serum: Vitamin C serum is considered a modern skincare must-have, and I’ve tried a few different formulas. Drunk Elephant’s has Vitamin C and Vitamin D, which work together to brighten skin and improve any signs of photoaging (which is a fancy word for "skin damaged caused by the sun"). Personally, I like my serums to have a bit of a thicker texture — this one felt almost watery.
Would I buy the full size? Nah.
B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Gel: I actually really liked this product. It’s meant to be used after C-Firma as a moisturizer, but it doesn’t feel like a traditional moisturizer — it has a gel texture and absorbs into the skin quickly. Without the almost-tacky texture of my usual go-tos, I doubted that B-Hydra would keep my skin plump and hydrated through the day. But it did!
Would I buy the full size? Yes! I recommend trying the trial size before you commit, though, and maybe adding a thicker moisturizer on top at night.
Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil: This was my favorite of the Drunk Elephant products. The oil lives up to its name and feels super luxurious. It’s definitely a bedtime product, though — slather on a thick layer before you go to sleep and you’ll wake up glowier for sure.
Would I buy the full size? Yup, and I’m tracking the shipment as we speak.
T.L.C. Sukari Babyfacial: I’ve read the most incredible reviews of DE’s Babyfacial mask. Drunk Elephant claims it will “knock your cells off,” and fans say it’s even better than a salon facial, thanks to its high levels of AHAs and BHAs that resurface and exfoliate skin. I definitely felt the AHA/BHA mixture tingling as soon as I massaged it into my face, but I honestly didn’t see much of a difference after washing the mask off. I even took before and after pictures to post here, and there was zero change, so I’m not even going to bother putting them up.
Would I buy the full size? No way - I prefer my $10 Aztec Secret Healing Clay.
The biggest takeaway from my Drunk Elephant experience ended up being deeper than I bargained for.
Taking these daily pictures was hard. Every night, I stared into the self-facing camera and smiled, only to scroll through approximately one million selfies afterwards and critique every last inch of my face. Days 1 - 5 left me frustrated and feeling like Drunk Elephant wasn’t worth the hype. (Because it was obviously Drunk Elephant’s fault that I didn’t like my face, right?!)
But on Day 6, my smile was real. I felt good; Maybe these products are actually working!, I thought as I scrolled through the night’s selfies. But after putting together the before-and-after slideshow, I can see that my skin wasn’t actually that different from Day 5 to Day 6. The difference was me, my mood, my outlook.
So, no, Drunk Elephant products aren’t miracle products. They won’t keep you from feeling old and they won’t magically transform your face back into its 22-year-old state of glowiness. No product can. But Drunk Elephant is pretty awesome for taking care of the skin you have now, as it is — and I’m starting to feel OK about that.