As beauty editors, we get bombarded with a ton of new products every day (we know—tough life). Reviewed is a series where we report on some of the best products we've tried. Whether it's a drugstore lipstick that lasted all day or a hand cream that saved us this winter, you'll find all our favorites in this column. Enjoy!
Discovering international skincare secrets is kind of our modus operandi here at Byrdie (at least we try our very best to make it so), whether that be a snail essence that's blowing up in Korea or a cleansing balm from the French pharmacy that dissolves makeup better than anything you'd find stateside. But rarely do we have the chance to discover a foreign skincare product as niche and little-known as this incredible Italian moisturizer.
Here's the story: This year, I spent the month of January in Italy (rough, I know). I'd always fantasized about going wine tasting in Tuscany one day, so I resolved to make that a priority. Toward the end of my trip, I booked a ticket for a friend and me to go on a tour of the Chianti region, about an hour away from Florence. I went with a company called Accord, which picks you up in the Florence city center, drives you into wine country, ushers you through an old monastery and a few charming local towns, and then takes you to a small family-owned winery. It was 45 euros a head and supposed to be a group tour, but since it was the off-season, we ended up being the only two. Not bad.
Anyway, our final destination was this teeny-tiny winery called Maurizio Brogioni, owned and operated by Maurizio himself, an impossibly charming little man about my dad's age who comes from generations of Italian winemakers. The vineyard is itty-bitty (less than 10 acres) and produces five different types of wine, plus its own olive oil and chocolate dipping sauce, all of which were so heartstoppingly delicious that I didn't think my life could get any better.
But then, as if Maurizio could intuit that I was a Byrdie editor on the perpetual hunt for a good story, he whipped out his own Brogioni-branded line of—wait for it—all-natural skincare products made out of olive oil and wine. There was a hand cream, a body lotion, and a face cream, and he encouraged us to give them a try as we nibbled on Italian cheese and Chianti. Wine, chocolate, and skincare—this was real life.
What was even more surprising than the sheer experience of having a wine-soaked skincare party in the hills of Tuscany was how lovely the products themselves were. Maurizio personally designed these formulas, which utilize the incredible natural properties of extra-virgin olive oil and Chianti Classico. The olive oil used is super small-batch, meaning its vitamins A and E (which protect the skin from pollutants and other environmental aggressors), plus its deeply penetrative moisturizing properties, are of the highest quality. Then, if the olive oil wasn't Italian enough for you, the products also take advantage of the antioxidants in red wine, which restore collagen and elastin.
The face cream impressed me most: It is delightfully light and fast-absorbing, which is super important to me as a combo skin type but isn't something you find with a lot of natural formulas (which can be a little on the greasy side). The product comes in a convenient pump container, which I always prefer over a jar. Plus, it has the freaking Brogioni coat of arms on the packaging, in case you forget you're using what might be the most Italian moisturizer ever made.
Needless to say, I bought a bottle and, sadly, am now on my last few pumps. The good news is that you can order the product and have it shipped to the U.S. The only issue is that the winery has a 60-euro order minimum, and it can take up to five weeks to arrive (did I mention this was a tiny operation?). However, if you're a fan of wine, olive oil, and skincare, I'd recommend the splurge. On the Maurizio Brogioni website, you could order, say, two 15-euro bottles of moisturizer and then, to meet the order minimum, throw in two 10-euro bottles of Chianti Classico and a 10-euro bottle of chocolate sauce. Just a suggestion.