Thermal water to be exact. A common theme in French skincare I have found - Vichy, La Roche Posay and Avène utilise the healing properties of natural thermal springs to create their products which are very often friendly to sensitive skin and soothing to dry skin.
Somewhat of a cult classic, Avène Thermal Spring Water is one of those products with no defined purpose but a multitude of uses.
The history of the thermal spring is attributed to a horse! I kid you not - in 1736 a horse was turned loose in the mountains as it had a sever skin disease. The horse was found with its coat and skin transformed having been drinking from the spring. Don't believe me? Clickity here. A treatment centre was built on the site of the spring and to this day everything from skin diseases to burns are treated there, just reading the history would convince you of it's soothing, reparative qualities.
Avène have developed a sizable range of products around their thermal water. I am currently using their Extremely Gentle Cleansing Lotion (albeit sporadically, but I am slowly adopting it into my daily and nightly routine) but the whole range is somewhat daunting, seeing as I took so much time to develop my routine this far, to ditch everything and convert to an Avène-only regime would seem silly. But a new staple on my bulging bathroom shelf is the Thermal Spring Water. I tell everyone I can about it. I like to imagine every French household has this magic bottle somewhere.
They list the potential uses as:
Redness-prone skin / inflammation
Keratosis-prone, scaly skin
Eczema / atopic dermatitis
Allergic reactions / sensitive skin / irritation
Burning / stinging / itching / tingling
After shaving/after waxing
To set makeup
It just keeps giving. I spray a mist over my face when I come out of the shower, after I've cleansed (before toner or instead of toning all together), I plan on using it to set my make-up next time I go out and one my knee gets better it will be coming with me to the gym. Generally you spray on your skin as often as needed, leave for 2-3min and gently pat dry and unlike spritzing your face with regular water, your skin doesn't dry out when it has evaporated.
Every time I read the bottle, the website or the accompanying leaflet I discover a new use for it. My legs are plagued with Keratosis - so I will be applying it liberally over the next few days and will report back!
It lists its benefits to include a low salt mineral content which is adapted to sensitive skin and won't dry it out. Its hypoallergenic, has a pH of 7.5 which won't sting or burn - so much so it can be sprayed on open, clean wounds as it is naturally bacteriologically pure and it is also collected at source and only sees light, they claim, when it leaves the bottle and lands on your skin. Am I the only one slightly impressed by this?
Very reasonably priced, coming in around or just under €10 and available in Boots and local pharmacies - if nothing else I highly recommend picking up a bottle and just trying it, with so many uses I'm sure you can find a place for it in your life. I know it will be a permanent fixture in my regime from now on.
Products like this are the reason why I like to say - when it comes to skincare, if in doubt think French!
Have you ever tried a thermal water product?
Would you be tempted to?
Lots of love