When it comes to moisturizers, there’s a few ingredients we’re always on the lookout for. Think: good-for-your-skin gems like hyaluronic acid, glycerin, peptides, and ceramides. So, we were intrigued when we saw the latest launch from skincare brand Circumference—a moisturizer with grape leaf extract as the key ingredient. Circumference’s Active Restorative Moisturizing Cream ($120) is the first launch from their new "Waste-Not" sourcing initiative (the sustainable brand dominated Byrdie's Eco Awards two years in a row). There's eco-friendly packaging as well sustainable sourcing, and the cream uses a slow chemical-free method to extract nourishing oil from discarded grape leaves.
Circumference sources their grape leaves from Bedell Cellars, a sustainable winery, and while grape leaves are an ingredient you might find on a menu, they have way more benefits than your typical appetizer. “We actually take a lot of cues from the food industry. They're a little bit at the forefront of wellness and what's good for you,” CEO and founder Jina Kim explains to Brydie exclusively. “Now we're just trying to take those learnings and put it to your skin topically.”
Grape leaf extract is rich in antioxidants like vitamins A and K which help reduce redness and inflammation, manic acid which gently exfoliates the surface layer of skin, and polyphenols which protect skin from damage and free radicals.
Another key ingredient of the cream that you might also find in Whole Foods: snow mushroom. Jina says, “We found out that [snow mushroom] carries five times the water retention of hyaluronic acid. [The mushroom is] the building block of hydration and plump skin in this.” Plus, there's still fan-favorite hyaluronic acid present for a recipe made for hydrated winter skin.
Sacha Inchi, a plant that produces edible seeds you can find at the grocers, is another lesser-known skin savior found in this product. Combined with prickly pear seed and marula seed, the trio leaves skin smooth and soft. Last but not least, peptides not only promote collagen and elastin production but strengthen the skin barrier.
Let’s get into the feel of the moisturizer. It’s an airy, textured cream that’s on the thicker side but not heavy or greasy on the skin. You only have to apply a small amount to get that instantly hydrated feeling and it absorbs quickly. When I applied it for the first time it felt less like applying a moisturizer and more like applying a soothing cream—perfect for dealing with maskne, stressed skin, and whatever this winter has in store for my skin.
You can grab a tub for yourself at Circumference.com.