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Still, not one of them had ticked all the boxes: pretty packaging, easy-to-use, with clean ingredients that felt immediately satisfying.
So they ticked all the boxes themselves, it came as no surprise that Summer Fridays was immediately adored by fans and Sephora shoppers for its simple, effective, affordable and Instagrammable products.
The new Skin Nourishing Body Lotion has quickly garnered its own fan base like the best-selling Cloud Dew Oil-Free Gel Cream — and both have incredible textures and finishes that are perfect for the summer.
Nearly everyone is in need of some extra moisture during the warmer months, when our largest organ (the skin!), is just as thirsty as the rest of the body.
So if you've been looking for ways to hydrate and amplify your natural glow without heavy oils, I put these products to the test to trial whether they're really worth it.
Face cream: the details
The Cloud Dew Oil-Free Gel Cream was one of the first products I tried from the brand, and it delivered on its promise.
The gel-cream texture is unique in the sense that it provides all the cushion of a heavier, oil-based moisturizer, without any of the oil.
Instead, it uses three types of hyaluronic acid, glycerin and amino acids to penetrate the skin’s surface on multiple levels for lasting hydration.
For sensitive and blemish-prone skin types, I can only imagine how comforting the cooling formula feels on flare-ups, but Sephora shoppers have confirmed this assumption.
"This is one of my favourite moisturizers I've ever tried. I have sensitive skin and many products agitate it. Not only have I had no issues with this, but I love what it's done for my skin," one reviewer said. "It applies easily, makes my skin feel plump and look dewy, and leaves it well hydrated. I use it in the mornings and it's a great lightweight product for summer."
Others dealing with adult acne have called the Oil-Free Gel Cream a "holy grail moisturizer."
"I LOVE this gel moisturizer. I have acne-prone skin and this product does not irritate my skin at all. It is really hydrating and leaves a beautiful glow for hours," another reviewer said. "I am on my second jar and will continue to use is as a staple in my skincare routine."
For an extra boost of brightness, the Oil-Free Gel Cream packs a punch of vitamins E and C from pineapple enzymes that improve skin tone and texture.
SHOP IT: Sephora, $57
Body lotion: the details
This new addition to the Summer Fridays range joined the lineup just in time for pool season, when everything is on display.
The Summer Skin Nourishing Body Lotion feels like a warm hug. An infusion of plant-derived butters and oils, the formula instantly melts into the skin with the help of softening ceramides.
Plus, it's lightly fragranced with Summer Fridays' signature scent of coconut, vanilla blossom and warm almond. It's equal parts tropical and inviting.
Though the Summer Skin Nourishing Body Lotion contains a rich blend of cocoa butter, shea butter, and oils like argran and rosehip, it finishes non-greasy (which reviewers seem to love).
"Sooooo hydrating yet it absorbs quickly and doesn't leave me feeling sticky. The scent is gorgeous but not overpowering. A year round essential. God bless Summer Fridays," one reviewer said.
Bonus: the Summer Skin Nourishing Body Lotion also contains hyaluronic acid and glycerin, which simultaneously attract water and strengthen the skin's moisture barrier.
"By far the best body lotion I have tried. I have dry skin and this lasts all day and night for me! It smells amazing too," another reviewer claimed. "Definitely will continue to purchase this product."
SHOP IT: Summer Fridays, $35
I expected to have a positive experience with these products given their ingredients and their popularity, and I'm happy to say that I was not let down.
Even better, it gives the complexion a healthy glow without developing a high-shine over the course of a super hot day.
When it comes to the Summer Skin Nourishing Body Lotion, I was surprised by my reaction to the scent as I'm not usually a fan of strong vanilla/brown sugar notes.
That said, this product has a soft, tropical vibe and a luxe feel on freshly shaven legs that I love. It has all the benefits of a body butter, minus the oily mess that comes with one.
All in all, this hydrating duo is without a doubt a "mini staycation" for your skin, and both products will be in my beach bag this summer.