I added Primera's Alpine Berry Water Cream to my skincare regime after a trip to Seoul and I'll never look back

A lightweight, K-beauty moisturiser made with glycerin, squalane, urea, and cocoa-seed butter.

05 Aug 2019

Quick: First three words that pop into your head when you think "K-beauty." Innovative? Above all. Playful? Yes! Effective? Sure. But how about: Clean? Yeah, me neither. Korea is known as a hotbed of beauty disruption — not so much a leader in clean and simple formulas or nature-sourced ingredients. But wait. I have something to tell you.

Last year, I flew to Seoul and spent several days in Myeongdong, a shopping district whose streets are lined, in very large part, with stores carrying every beauty product imaginable. Some are filled with sheet masks (and only sheet masks), others with coloured lenses (and nothing else). But there was one filled with plants, growing out of the walls and tables, and seeds, filling glass jars and vials. It was the PRIMERA flagship and every skin-care product in the store was clean (free of parabens, animal-derived ingredients, mineral oil, synthetic dyes, artificial fragrance, and more) and infused with the powerful nutrients contained in seeds on the verge of blooming into plants. (Or, as one translation in the Seoul store puts it: "focused on energy of sprouting moment.")

After about 20 minutes in this skin-care boutique/greenhouse, I walked out with one of Primera’s best-sellers: ALPINE BERRY WATERY CREAM. It feels like a cream (rich), but absorbs like a gel (fast) and hydrates like a balm (intensely). Its moisturising power is multi-pronged, with glycerin, squalane, urea, cocoa-seed butter, and more in the mix. And its seed of choice? Wild strawberry sprouts that thrive in the Alps, almost 8,000 feet above sea level. (There are a few antioxidant-rich blackberries in there, too.)

Within six weeks of my return home, my jar of Watery Cream (which is not in fact remotely watery… because what kind of a cream is that?) was cleaned out. I had been using it on top of my treatment serums at night and under makeup in the morning. I’d been dabbing it almost up to my lashlines and down to my decolletage. But, with no more Korea travel in my immediate future, our time together was over.

Until this month, when word came through: Primera and the Alpine Water Cream is available on Amazon for just £32.45 (although I still highly recommend a trip to Seoul).

You'll find this face moisturiser in the August 2019 Allure Beauty Box