Allies of Skin: Promise Keeper & Fresh Slate Cleanser + Masques

Allies of Skin is very easily one of my favorite brand discoveries from last year. It’s a brand all about simplicity and powerful actives. Their products have amazing ingredient lists that are effective and actually do what they promise. I grabbed these three when they first launched around the holidays. I’ve been using them for quite some time and just haven’t gotten around to the full review yet. The new launch last month reminds me that it’s time to talk about these three gems.

Promise Keeper Blemish Facial is designed to be an overnight treatment cream to keep skin clear. Created for all skin types, especially problematic complexions prone to stress and hormonal breakouts.

Details per Allies of Skin:

Allies keep their promises. This nightly leave-on treatment mask (pH 5.2-5.7) works double-time as a preventive measure to keep skin clear. Formulated with a powerful blend of AHAs, enzymes, antibacterial cell cultures, and Probiotics, it works as you sleep to nourish problematic skin with clean hydration, while simultaneously unclogging pores, fading old blemish marks, refining skin texture, and brightening the complexion. It also helps soothe irritation, reduce sebum production, and strengthen the skin’s natural protective barrier. With nightly use: skin looks more even toned, is less congested, and has a radiant clarity that won’t go unnoticed.

Directions Apply this leave-on mask to clean skin. For best results, use Molecular Saviour™ Mist before and after application. Use nightly to maintain clear skin. Always use sun protection (SPF) the morning after.

Allies Tip

Perfect for use as a preventative nightly treatment two weeks before that time of the month or a stressful period. Mix with a drop or two of your favorite face oil for an extra boost of hydration.

You may experience some purging in the form of breakouts during the first two weeks of product use, which is completely normal due to increased antibacterial activity and cellular renewal rate. This initial breakout should go away after and your skin will improve from then on with daily usage.

 

Benefits

  • Gently exfoliates skin, while speeding up cellular renewal.
  • Regulates sebum production and fights breakout-causing bacteria.
  • Hydrates and brightens dull and dehydrated skin.
  • Soothes redness and irritation.
  • Restores the skin’s natural protective barrier.
  • Encourages collagen production and boosts the skin’s natural reparative process.

 

Active Ingredients:

 

Dioic, Mandelic, Lactic, Pyruvic & Azelaic Acid A powerful blend of acids fights blemishes, speeds up cellular renewal, encourages collagen production, lightens dark spots, increases hydration, and strengthens the skin barrier.

Potassium Azeloyl Diglycinate This unique active hydrates and brightens skin, regulates sebum production, and improves skin elasticity.

Organic Rosehip Oil Abundant in natural Vitamin A, this multi-tasking oil visibly improves the appearance of blemishes and scars, while calming inflammation and boosting hydration.

Colloidal Silver Provides excellent antibacterial properties that help fight blemish-causing bacteria, in addition to boosting the skin’s natural reparative process.

Pomegranate Enzymes Regulates sebum-production, promotes hydration, brightens, and gently exfoliates skin.

Niacinamide Potent restorative ingredient that hydrates and brightens dull skin, evens out skin tone, calms inflammation, and improves the appearance of fine lines.

Manuka Honey (UMF 17+) Sustainably sourced from New Zealand, manuka honey has biologically active enzymes that speed up wound healing and is naturally antibacterial. Its humectant properties help keep skin hydrated and soothed.

Hyaluronic Acid Deeply hydrates skin, promotes wound healing, and maintains healthy cell function for more youthful-looking skin.

Phospholipids Helps restore the skin’s natural protective barrier and acts as a humectant to boost moisture-retention.

Palmitoyl Tripeptide-8 A restorative peptide that soothes irritated skin and reduces redness and inflammation.

 

I have to admit when I first grabbed this I wasn’t sure what to expect. I figured I would use it like a serum or treatment I could layer in my routine. It was later I learned it is designed to be a night cream, not a treatment serum. It does have a strong medicinal scent. Not in a bad way, but it is a pretty powerful herbal medicinal scent. It took just a little bit to get used to. The texture is a light cream but not in a traditional light cream sense. It has a slightly sticky kind of cream texture. If any of you remember Sunday Riley Bionic you know what I am talking about. It also took me a while to get used to the texture of this cream. I tried layering this as a serum and using it alone as a cream.

I grabbed this in the winter after it launched and found it did not have enough moisture for me to be a night cream during the colder season. I can use a balm on winter nights so this was way too light when used alone. So I struggled trying to layer this with creams and balms to find a good combination plus also get the moisture my skin craved. I tried mixing this with oils as suggested, but that still wasn’t enough. Oils tend to evaporate off my skin really quickly. I have combo skin, not yet dry, but in the winter season with my almost 40 age I find I’m getting drier and needing more moisture especially in the winter. I hate to say maturing skin but I’m finding it’s true and maturing means drier. The best way I found to use this was to cut it with a bit of a face balm. That made it hydrating enough to last all night as balms last longer than oils on me. My favorite combo is Promise Keeper with Earthwise Beauty Tigress Balm. Such a blemish fighting combo.

So after I figured out how this worked best for me I ended up loving it. I am able to use this in the summer now alone as designed with no balm cut in. I use Promise Keeper mostly during my monthly blemish week aka cycle week. This manages to keep those monthly hormonal blemishes at bay. Brilliant. I do use it daily during that week. Once I feel that week coming on, or if my skin is just being troublesome I start using this and it clears right up. If I had blemish prone skin all the time I would probably use this daily as a main night cream. As I don’t have problem skin in general anymore I don’t find the need to use this daily as my only cream. I think if you did have problem skin all the time this would be a really nice cream to use.

Promise Keeper is pricey but I only need one pump for my face and you could really cut out other products because this is jam packed with blemish fighting ingredients. You have colloidal silver and manuka honey which are both antibacterial. Potassium azeloyl diglycinate and pomegranate enzymes help regulate sebum production. Niacinamide is a jack of all trades. It helps with aging and pore size, it’s anti-inflammatory & evens skin tone. Add in a calming peptide, some hydrators like hyaluronic acid, rosehip oil and phospholipids to help soothe and hydrate while treating the skin.

Promise Keeper has four acids: Dioic, Mandelic, Lactic, Pyruvic & Azelaic Acid. Dioic acid is new to me. It’s for blemish prone skins and it helps with pigmentation, reducing sebum and also lowers the amount of P.acnes bacteria on the skin. Mandelic and lactic acid are your more gentle alphyhodroxy acids which help resurface the skin. These are larger molecules in the AHA family and less irritating. Pyruvic acid is an alpha-keto acid that can be converted to lactic acid by the body. It performs most of the same functions as lactic acid-lightens hyperpigmentation, smooths the skin & exfoliates. Azelaic acid is a dicarboxylic acid. It does exfoliate to some degree but it’s also great for blemish skins. It’s naturally antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and helps reduce bacteria growth on the hair follicles. You can see how this blend of acids will suit any problem skin well without being harsh or overpowering.

Fresh Slate Brightening Cleanser + Masque is a creamy cleanser that can also function as a brightening mask. Details per Allies of Skin:

Get it right from the start. Never underestimate the importance of a good cleanser, especially one that doubles as a masque. Treat skin to this supercharged, sulfate-free, creamy two-in-one cleanser (pH 4.3-4.8) that strengthens the skin’s protective barrier and offers gentle enzymatic exfoliation while nourishing skin with a potent blend of multiple brighteners, antioxidants, and hydrators. Immediately, skin is refreshed, clean, and inflammation is calmed. 

Most brightening products require time to work. This peach-hued cleanser starts working the minute you massage it into your skin, thanks to the water-activated Vitamin C and fruit-derived enzymes. It gently cleanses skin, visibly brightens skin, reduces sallowness, and creates a smooth canvas for makeup application. As a mask, it calms redness making skin look more even-toned and boosts luminosity, leaving you lit from within.

With daily use: skin feels plump with a more refined texture and the complexion looks even toned and illuminated.

Directions

As A Cleanser: Massage into damp skin, or dry skin if wearing makeup. Keep eyes closed. Leave on for 1-2 minutes for added benefits. Rinse well. Repeat if wearing sunblock or makeup.

As A Masque: Smooth over clean skin. Leave on for 10 minutes before rinsing. Use daily or anytime skin needs a boost of radiance.

Allies Tip To reap the full benefits of this product, when using this as your morning cleanse, massage into skin and leave-on while brushing your teeth, before washing it off after.

 

Benefits

  • Hydrates dry skin.
  • Brightens dull skin and lightens dark spots.
  • Visibly improves the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
  • Soothes redness and irritation.
  • Speeds up cellular renewal.
  • Encourages collagen production.

Created for all skin types – especially dull and stressed complexions.

 

Active Ingredients:

 

Diglucosyl Gallic Acid A powerful molecule which inhibits free radical damage, calms inflammation, lightens hyperpigmentation and prevents new dark spots from forming by regulating melanin production.

Astaxanthin Potent antioxidant that helps maintain skin’s elasticity and visibly improves the appearance of wrinkles. The high percentage of this naturally pink pigmented ingredient is what gives this product its peachy hue.

Water-activated Vitamin C Powerful antioxidant that encourages collagen production, brightens and evens out skin tone.

Lactobacillius Ferment Lysate Filtrate Potent probiotics promotes collagen production, soothes irritation and oxygenates stressed skin to improve radiance.

Argan Oil A nourishing oil which hydrates dry skin while balancing sebum production and protecting skin from environmental aggressors.

Safflower Oil Its low molecular weight enables it to penetrate deep into skin. High levels of linoleic acid – an essential fatty acid – gives this oil powerful impurity-removing and moisture-retaining properties.

Cassia Angustifolia Seed Polysaccharide An effective humectant that increases hydration levels in the skin while reducing redness and plumping up wrinkles.

Hyaluronic Acid Deeply hydrates skin, promotes wound healing, and maintains healthy cell function for more youthful-looking skin.

This is a creamy textured cleanser and mask. It smells faintly of citrus, brightens my skin and isn’t drying. I’ve used it both ways as a cleanser in the morning or as a mask. I’ve also tried it as a second cleanse then mask in the evening. Ultimately I prefer this as a morning cleanse then left on for ten minutes to double duty as a brightening mask. It leaves my skin brighter, hydrated and soft.

This cleanser uses vitamin C to brighten and even skin tone (as a bonus it stimulates collagen production), astaxanthin to provide major antioxidant benefits & diglucosyl gallic acid helps fight free radicals and even the skins tone as well. This product also uses probiotics and multiple hydrators like hyaluronic acid, safflower and argan oil & cassia angustifolia seed polysaccharide. This product shines the most as a morning cleanse and mask. I rub this onto my face then leave it on to do its job while I brush my teeth and let the water get hot in the shower.

Fresh Slate Purifying Cleanser + Masque is a detox cleanser best used as a mask. Details per Allies of Skin:

Get it right from the start. Never underestimate the importance of a good cleanser, especially one that doubles as a masque. Treat skin to this clay-based two-in-one cleanser (pH 5.3-5.8), supercharged with Manuka Honey (UMF 17+) and Salicylic Acid that draw out pore-clogging impurities, while pore refiners and soothing actives clarify and balance problematic skin. Immediately, skin is clean and smooth, without any tightness or irritation. 

Most clay masks make you look like you have a layer of goop on your face, then start to flake and crack as they dry. This one exits the tube looking and smelling like cacao butter but melts as you massage it in. You can apply it and demolish a bag of chips without feeling like your face is about to crack – unlike what you would experience with a traditional clay mask. You can also answer the door without scaring anyone. Here’s our promise: Our products will never stand in the way of you living your life to the fullest.

With daily use: skin has a more refined texture with less congestion.

Directions

As A Cleanser: Massage into damp skin, or dry skin if wearing makeup. Keep eyes closed. Leave on for 1-2 minutes for added benefits. Rinse well. Repeat if wearing sunblock or makeup. Also perfect after a workout session.

As A Masque: Smooth over clean skin. Leave on for 10 minutes before rinsing. Use daily or anytime skin needs a boost of radiance.

Allies Tip This product contains a Beta Hydroxy Acid (BHA) that may cause stinging if it gets in the eyes. Keep your eyes closed when using it as a cleanser, and avoid the eye area when applying it as a masque. If it gets in your eyes, simply rinse with running water.

 

Benefits

  • Decongests skin and absorbs sebum and grime from pores.
  • Refines the appearance of enlarged pores.
  • Anti-bacterial properties fight breakout-causing bacteria and boosts body’s natural reparative process.
  • Boost moisture levels in skin.
  • Calms redness and inflammation.

Created for all skin types – especially problematic and congested complexions.

 

Active Ingredients:

 

Rhassoul & Kaolin Clay Mineral-rich clays draw out pore-clogging impurities and reduce sebum production.

Colloidal Silver & Manuka Honey (UMF 17+) Provide excellent antibacterial properties that help fight blemish-causing bacteria, in addition to boosting the body’s natural reparative process.

1% BHA – Salicylic Acid An oil-soluble antibacterial exfoliant that penetrates the epidermis to clean inside pores and calm inflammation.

Lactobacillius Ferment Potent antibacterial probiotics promote a healthy balanced skin flora and reduce appearance of blemishes and redness.

Cacao Powerful antioxidant that fights free radicals, encourages collagen production, improves circulation, and smells like chocolate.

Hemp Seed Oil Provides essential nutrients, antibacterial protection and calms inflammation.

Safflower Oil Its low molecular weight enables it to penetrate deep into skin. High levels of linoleic acid – an essential fatty acid – gives this oil powerful impurity-removing and moisture-retaining properties.

Hyaluronic Acid Deeply hydrates skin and maintains healthy cell function for more youthful-looking skin.

This product is by far my favorite of the three. This cleanser and mask duo detoxes and purifies the skin with clay, manuka honey and salicylic acid. As a total bonus this smells like cacoa. It’s truly divine. It has a medium and sticky texture. One of the things I truly love about this mask is that it doesn’t dry out my face while using it. Most clay masks overdry my skin out. This one stays moist for the ten minutes which makes it more enjoyable to use. That and the chocolate scent.

This really shines more as a mask than a cleanser. It’s so sticky that it’s not my favorite as a cleanser. I do like it as a second cleanse but mainly as a night mask. You can apply full strength and deal with the sticky texture as a mask. As a cleanser you need to add water to be able to rub this around your face. It does have an ever so slight hint of grit to it as well. It won’t give you physical exfoliation but it’s worth noting. This combines clay, salicylic acid, colloidal silver and manuka honey for a powerhouse of pore cleansing and antibacterial fighters. Add in some probiotics and hydrators like hyaluronic acid, safflower and hemp see oil. Cacoa is interesting and I’ve never paid that much attention to it in skincare. I knew it was an antioxidant but didn’t know it can encourage collagen production and improve circulation. I’m guessing it’s from the stimulant activity of the natural caffeine in cacoa.

This is an amazingly delicious detox mask. It never dries me out and really feels like it purifies my pores without overdoing it. My skin is never dry or tight after using this, unlike some clay masks. I love it and have considered it to be a hero product. The only thing I feel could be improved on this product is the packaging. Allies packages all their products in the airless pump tubes, which is amazing for most skincare products as long as their textures are more fluid like creams and serums. It works well for the two above products. This product is thicker and mostly sticky. It’s really too thick and sticky to be in this type of pump. I find myself having to use so much effort just to dispense a small amount with this pump. Plus the tube then bends over while I’m struggling to really pump out the viscous and sticky product inside. It’s hard to pump this one handed. I know others feel the same way so I feel validated that it’s not just me. Hopefully Allies comes up with a solution and repackages one day as this is a stand out product.

Ingredients Promise Keeper Blemish Facial

Aqua (Water), Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Potassium Azeloyl Diglycinate, Lactobacillus/Punica Granatum Fruit Ferment Extract, Niacinamide, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Octadecenedioic Acid, Polyacrylate Crosspolymer-6, Maltodextrin, Rosa Canina (Rose Hip) Fruit Oil, Colloidal Silver, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Propanediol, Mirabilis Jalapa Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Syringa Vulgaris (Lilac) Leaf Cell Culture Extract, Glycyrrhiza Inflata Root Extract, Manuka Honey (UMF 17+), Sodium Hyaluronate (L), Mandelic Acid (L), Palmitoyl Tripeptide-8, Ascophyllum Nodosum Extract, Azelaic Acid, Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola) Leaf Extract, Ginkgo Biloba Leaf Extract, Phospholipids, Sphingolipids, Hyaluronic Acid, Caffeine, Rosmarinyl Glucoside, Caffeyl Glucoside, Gallyl Glucoside, Lactic Acid (L), Pyruvic Acid, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Sodium Gluconate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Dextran, Caprylhydroxamic Acid, Benzyl Alcohol, O-cymen-5-OL, Phenoxyethanol.

Ingredients Fresh Slate Brightening Cleanser + Masque

Aqua (Water), Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Glycerin, Argania Spinosa (Argan) Kernel Oil, Carbomer, Triethyl Citrate, Lactobacillus Ferment Lysate Filtrate, Hydrolyzed Opuntia Ficus-Indica Flower Extract, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Diglucosyl Gallic Acid, Sodium Hyaluronate (L), Ascophyllum Nodosum Extract, Cassia Angustifolia Seed Polysaccharide, Chondrus Crispus (Carrageenan) Extract, Astaxanthin, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Sodium Cocoyl Hydrolyzed Amaranth Protein, Titanium Dioxide, Pelargonium Graveolens (Geranium) Flower Oil, Vanillin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Ethylhexylglycerin, Glyceryl Polyacrylate, Caprylhydroxamic Acid, Benzyl Alcohol, Polysorbate 20, Sodium Hydroxide, Phenoxyethanol

Ingredients Fresh Slate Purifying Cleanser + Masque

Kaolin, Glycerin, Aqua (Water), Sorbitan Isosterate, Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate, Polysorbate 60, Polyglyceryl-6 Polyricinoleate, Butylene Glycol, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Fruit Powder, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Triethyl Citrate, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Silica, Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine, Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Polysorbate 20, Lactobacillus, Salicylic Acid, Manuka Honey (UMF 17+), Moroccan Lava Clay, Carnitine (L), Fomes Officinalis (Mushroom) Extract, Hexanoyl Dipeptide-3 Norleucine Acetate, Cannabis Sativa (Hemp) Seed Oil, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Extract, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Fruit Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate (L), Laminaria Digitata Extract, Saccharomyces Cerevisiae Extract, Epilobium Angustifolium Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Colloidal Silver, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Flour, Glucosamine HCl, Lecithin, Vanillin, Urea, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Ethylhexylglycerin, Polyglyceryl-6 Palmitate/Succinate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Sodium Gluconate, Phenoxyethanol.

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