There's Nothing Sad About These Blues / by Kate Palisay

Every once in a very long while, a product comes along that is so good and perfect, it hardly seems real. It's the kind of product that with every use somehow gets better, and it leaves your expectations of ultimate disappointment completely unfulfilled. It is without fault, the rare "unicorn" in the dense forest of cosmetics. And in the case of Herbivore Botanicals' Blue Tansy Mask, the incredible azure color of the cool gel alone will have you convinced that magic must be part of the production process. You may find yourself asking questions like, "Are mermaid tears regulated? And would they be included in a list of ingredients?"

But as it turns out, there's a real, found-on-Earth ingredient that can be humanely produced without any harm to your favorite mythical creatures. Mermaids, rejoice! Blue tansy oil, created from the flower of the same name, gets its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, as well as its unique color, from Azulene.

It's been two months since I first added the Herbivore Blue Tansy AHA + BHA Resurfacing Clarity Mask to my regular routine, and I'm comfortable disclosing that I would willingly follow any cult that could promise unlimited access to this magical turquoise goo. Now that I've had my first taste of the soothing and brightening effects of blue tansy, I'm itching to try more products from brands that have caught on to the ingredient's awesome potential. But not actually itching. Because you know, that mega calm skin thing I was just talking about.

In addition to its eponymous blue tansy, the Herbivore mask also contains naturally occurring salicylic acid from white willow bark (a natural beta hydroxy acid or BHA) and aloe leaf to unclog pores and shed dead skin. My skin has never reacted kindly to the chemically produced version of salicylic acid found in most products, so the discovery of a natural alternative that actually treats my breakouts instead of causing them is kind of a big deal. Fruit enzymes contribute the AHAs (alpha hydroxy acids) for gentle exfoliation.

Keeping it in the Herbivore family, I've already cleared the shelf space for my next blue purchase of the Lapis Facial Oil. Its ingredient list includes another one of my favorites, moisture-locking squalene oil, and aromatic jasmine sambac oil. 

Sunday Riley ups the exfoliating and resurfacing stakes by pairing trans-retinoic acid ester with blue tansy in their Luna Sleeping Night Oil. It's a one stop shop for addressing clogged pores, uneven texture, redness, fine lines, and whatever other skin woes are aging you or making you look seriously sleep-deprived.

The Blue Cocoon, a blue tansy-infused beauty balm from May Lindstrom, may be the most unique (not to mention most luxurious) formula of the bunch. The balm melts into the skin and is perfect for spot treating irritations or all over nourishment.