Hey y’all-hope you’re staying safe and healthy! If you’ve been following along for a bit, then you know I’m super passionate about clean beauty products. I made the switch to safer products a little over a year ago, and haven’t looked back. This spring, I’ve added an additional go-to clean beauty brand to my favorites, Drunk Elephant. Although I’ve shared a bit already about Drunk Elephant on Instagram, my Weekly Coffee Chats (you can subscribe to those here), and my monthly favorites blog posts, I wanted to do a blog post specifically dedicated to Drunk Elephant. So, today I’m excited to present my Drunk Elephant skincare review to y’all! Keep reading for more about why I wanted to try Drunk Elephant, benefits of Drunk Elephant, my thoughts on products I’ve tried, and Drunk Elephant products I plan to incorporate into my skincare routine long term!
Drunk Elephant Skincare Review
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Why Drunk Elephant?
So, if you’ve been around for a bit, then you also know I’m a Beautycounter Consultant. You might be wondering why I would want to try out another skincare brand when I’m already a Beautycounter consultant. Well, Beautycounter’s mission is to get safer products in the hands of everyone. Not exclusively Beautycounter products, but simply safer products. Therefore, as a Beautycounter consultant I also like to try out other clean beauty brands. I want to be a resource for clean beauty in general, and not just Beautycounter.
Sidenote-I am going to be starting a clean beauty newsletter soon that is separate from my Weekly Coffee Chats. If you would like to receive clean beauty education, tips for switching to safer products, and product recommendations in your inbox, you can sign up here.
Anyways, I had seen a lot of bloggers and people on Instagram rave about Drunk Elephant, and when I realized it was a clean brand, I became curious about the hype. Let’s be honest-their bright & colorful packaging lured me in as well. I definitely get Lilly Pulitzer vibes from it! Also, I tried Drunk Elephant’s new hair & body products right when they came out in April, so figured the skincare was worth a shot!
Benefits of Drunk Elephant Skincare
As a mentioned above, Drunk Elephant is, most importantly, a clean beauty brand. They have the “Clean at Sephora” seal, but they also go beyond the minimum requirements for a product at Sephora to get that designation. For instance, Drunk Elephant products are free from artificial fragrance, which is huge for me. Other harmful ingredients they omit include harsh sulfates, chemical sunscreens, parabens, and phthalates. I made sure to look at the ingredient lists to make sure there wasn’t anything problematic. I use Beautycounter’s Never List as a guide when selecting beauty products from any brand.
Drunk Elephant focuses on eliminating the “Suspicious Six” of essential oils, drying alcohols, silicones, chemical sunscreens, fragrances/dyes, SLS from their formulations. I don’t necessary agree that essential oils are crucial to avoid. However, it’s good that Drunk Elephant skincare exists as an option for people who have sensitivities to essential oils. Drunk Elephant products do have a smell, but it’s entirely from the raw ingredients in the products. So if you don’t like strongly scented skincare products, Drunk Elephant would be a good choice for you!
In addition, I don’t specifically avoid silicones (some Beautycounter products have silicones in them). However, the lack of silicones in Drunk Elephant skincare enables you to mix products together to make “skincare smoothies.” A skincare smoothie consists of a mixture of Drunk Elephant serums and moisturizers that you tailor to your skin’s needs.
Finally, Drunk Elephant’s ingredient philosophy focuses on ingredient safety, rather than whether it’s natural or synthetic. It’s important to note that not all natural ingredients are safe, and not all synthetic ingredients are unsafe. Thus Drunk Elephant uses safe natural and synthetic ingredients in their products.
I bought The Littles set to try out Drunk Elephant skincare. This is the most cost-effective way to try out most items in Drunk Elephant’s skincare line. It lets you try out small sizes before investing in full size products. Plus, the mini sizes are perfect for travel. In addition, the set comes with a pretty waterproof cosmetic pouch, and recipe cards for skincare smoothies. Based on what I’ve heard from others, The Littles set should last you 1-2 months if you are using them exclusively every day. I used The Littles pretty much exclusively for two weeks to make sure they agreed with my skin. Ever since, I’ve been using a combination of products from The Littles, plus other skincare products. (More about that later.) Therefore, I don’t personally know exactly how long the set should last.
Here’s what Drunk Elephant skincare products come in The Littles (all in mini sizes):
- Beste Jelly Cleanser
- Marula Luxury Facial Oil
- Protini Polypeptide Cream
- C-Firma Day Serum
- TLC Framboos Glycolic Night Serum
- Umbra Sheer Physical Daily SPF
- C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream
- B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum
Next, I’m going to share a few details and thoughts on each of these items:
This gel cleanser removes oil and impurities, and has a light pleasant scent. It has a slight lather, but isn’t a foaming cleanser. Also, Drunk Elephant recommends only using this cleanser at night. They actually encourage you to skip your morning cleanse, but I use a gentle cleaner from Beautycounter in the mornings whenever I use the Beste Jelly Cleanser at night. Overall I liked the Drunk Elephant jelly cleanser, but the full size costs $32, so I will stick with Beautycounter cleansers. They are more cost-effective for me, especially with consultant discount.
The Drunk Elephant Marula Oil is definitely my favorite facial oil I’ve tried. Because my skin is on the oilier side, I don’t use facial oils daily. But whenever I want an extra shot of moisture (because even oily skin needs proper moisture), it’s lightweight and absorbs quickly. Whenever I use it, I typically add a drop or two to my moisturizer. I haven’t had any issues with breakouts.
I absolutely love the Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Cream! It has peptides, amino acids, and pgymy waterlilly that plump and firm the skin, plus restore elasticity for a more youthful appearance. I really like that it has lots of beneficial ingredients without being too heavy for oily or combination skin. You can use Protini in the morning or evening. I plan to buy the full size Protini eventually, and have consistently been using this as my nighttime moisturizer for almost two months now.
C-Firma is Drunk Elephant’s Vitamin C serum. You use this serum in the morning, and it brightens and firms the skin. Incorporating a Vitamin C serum into my morning skincare routine has been a game changer for me over the past couple months. I would definitely recommend Drunk Elephant C-Firma to anyone looking for a quality Vitamin C serum. I will continue to use the mini sized Drunk Elephant C-Firmas that I get in sets. With respect to purchasing full sized, I plan to stick with Beautycounter. The retail price for Beautycounter and Drunk Elephant Vitamin C serum is the same ounce for ounce, and both are high performing. However, my consultant discount makes Beautycounter more cost effective for me. In addition, Beautycounter’s Vitamin C serum has a longer shelf life due to the extra stable form of Vitamin C they use! Drunk Elephant C-Firma is good for six months after opening, whereas Beautycounter Vitamin C serum is good for 12 months.
Drunk Elephant’s Glycolic Night Serum is an AHA/BHA blend that exfoliates dead skin cells to improve skin tone, texture, and appearance. Although you can use it nightly, many people recommend starting off with every other night, especially if you have sensitive skin. I didn’t have any issues with using this two nights in a row, but I also don’t have sensitive skin! I liked the Glycolic Night Serum, but Beautycounter Overnight Resurfacing Peel is about 2/3 the cost without even taking my consultant discount into account, and it performs similarly. So for full size products, I will stick with that!
So I actually bought the full size of the Umbra Sheer Physical Daily SPF at the same time I bought The Littles, because I knew that I needed a facial sunscreen for days that I don’t wear Beautycounter Dew Skin with SPF. Umbra Sheer is a zinc oxide based SPF. I find that Umbra Sheer absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave a white cast all day. There is a slight white cast when you first apply, but that quickly goes away. Also, I haven’t had any issues with applying my foundation on top of it. Last weekend I wore Umbra Sheer on my face while at the beach and didn’t get burnt. However, I would use caution when staying outside for long periods of time, as it technically isn’t water resistant. I was wearing a hat, and wasn’t really sweating due to the breeze on the beach, so that helped. Overall, it’s a good facial sunscreen for every day use.
Drunk Elephant C-Tango Eye Cream features five forms of Vitamin C, eight peptides, and cucumber extract to brighten and firm the eye area. I like it, but plan to stick with the Beautycounter eye creams I’ve been using because performance is similar and the Beautycounter is more cost effective for me.
This lightweight serum provides an extra shot of hydration to improve skin’s barrier function, texture, and appearance. Since my skin isn’t dry, I didn’t really see any massive improvements, so couldn’t justify buying the full-size. But it didn’t break me out, and feels pleasant on my skin, so will definitely continue to use when I get a mini as part of a Drunk Elephant set. I actually like to put some on my hands before bed at night, because they have been extra dry from all the COVID hand-washing.
Other Drunk Elephant Skincare Products
I’ve tried a few other Drunk Elephant skincare products that aren’t included in The Littles. Here’s what they are, along with my thoughts:
I first tried Drunk Elephant Umbra Tint SPF when I got a mini as part of the Bare With Us Kit I ordered from the Sephora Sale. Since I liked it, I went ahead and ordered the full size. It performs similarly to Umbra Sheer, but since it’s tinted there is no white cast at all. This is definitely great for giving you an extra glow on makeup-free days, while also protecting your skin from UV rays.
The Drunk Elephant D-Bronzi Drops add a hint of bronze and protective antioxidants to your skincare routine. Simply add a drop or two to your serum, sunscreen, or moisturizer. These add a nice subtle glow, and I would repurchase.
After hearing multiple people recommend this, I went ahead and sprung for the full size of the Drunk Elephant Babyfacial. This is a highly concentrated AHA/BHA treatment that you use as a 20-minute mask once a week. It’s considered a deep cleaning for your pores that rapidly increases cell turnover to improve skin tone and texture. I’ve used weekly for almost a month now, and my skin does seem to feel smoother. I’m looking forward to seeing how it does with continued use. Definitely use caution if you have sensitive skin. However, some redness right after you wash the mask off your face is normal. It quickly subsides though, so don’t be alarmed.
I have not used the full-size of the Slaai Makeup Melting Butter Cleanser, but I tried a mini that was in the “Nice to Meet You” set that I ordered so I could get some more Protini and try out another product. It does it’s job as a makeup remover, but I wouldn’t purchase the full size. Even though Beautycounter Cleansing Balm is more expensive, it’s worth the extra cost in my opinion. The smell of Slaai is also a bit weird. Although I got used to it after using it a few times and it didn’t bother me as much, it really took me aback the first time!
Overall Thoughts on Drunk Elephant Skincare Products
In summation, I absolutely recommend Drunk Elephant as a safe and high performing skincare option. As I mentioned earlier, my main reason for sticking with Beautycounter for most full-size products is cost. Since they perform similarly, I simply can’t justify the additional cost of most Drunk Elephant products. However, I will continue to use the Protini Moisturizer, D-Bronzi Drops, Umbra Tint and Umbra Sheer sunscreens, and Babyfacial as part of my regular skincare routine. In addition, I will continue to keep The Littles on hand for travel. I took them to the beach last weekend, and it was super convenient and saved space. It’s also fun to have them for when I want to mix things up and do a skincare smoothie.
If You’re Wanting to Try Out Drunk Elephant Skincare
As I mentioned earlier, The Littles is a great place to start if you’re wanting to try Drunk Elephant skincare. In fact, some people have said it’s actually more cost-effective to continue to re-purchase The Littles as opposed to buying full sizes if you want to continue to use everything as part of your regular skincare routine. The Bare With Us Kit is a limited edition Drunk Elephant gift set that lets you try out several products in smaller sizes. It includes C-Firma and TLC Framboos in medium sizes, plus Beste Jelly Cleanser, Umbra Tint Sunscreen, Lala Retro Moisturizer, and F-Balm Electrolyte Waterfacial in mini sizes.
And if you’re really on a budget but curious about Drunk Elephant skincare, they offer a few mini sets that let you try out just a couple products in small sizes. The “Time to Wake Up” Duo is only $23 and includes a mini C-Firma Day Serum and B-Hydra Hydration Serum. “Been a Long Day” Duo is $28, and includes a mini TLC Framboos Glycolic Night Serum and Lala Retro Moisturizer. Note: I haven’t tried the Lala Retro Moisturizer. I’m saving the mini I got in my Bare With Us Kit for the fall/winter, because it’s a thicker moisturizer. Finally the “Nice to Meet You” Duo comes with a mini Protini Moisturizer and Slaai Cleansing Butter. Although I wasn’t a huge fan of Slaai, some people really like it!
I hope that you enjoyed reading my Drunk Elephant skincare review and found it helpful. If you have any questions about Drunk Elephant, clean beauty, or skincare in general, feel free to email me!
Have you ever tried Drunk Elephant skincare? What are your favorite products?
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