A few weeks ago I was sent a couple of pots of Astral Cream to try.

Astral has been around since 1950, my Mum used to have pots of that and Nivea around when I was younger, but I’ll confess I’ve never used it myself. I always found the formulations of these products too heavy and greasy, but I do love the smell of Astral! One of the things that tempted me to give it another try was that it could be used like a cold cream, as a cleanser.

I will confess to being slightly disturbed to receive the pots through the mail along with a whole load of bumph about how good it was for “Mature and changing” skin. I’m no spring chicken but I didn’t think I was quite an advert for “mature skin” just yet!

I actually received a pot of two of the variations of Astral. Astral Original and Astral Light & Creamy. The products are both dermatologically tested and not tested on animals. They were both very different, so I’ll review them separately!

Astral Original

I did try it as a face cream to start with, but it was far too rich for my skin for day time and my make up just slid right off.

So I tried it as a cold cream. I really loved using it as a cleanser, I loved the smell and it did the job just as well as my regular cold cream. I felt it was slightly less heavy than my regular cold cream, so could work through Summer as well. I normally buy Boots original cold cream at £2.42 for 200ml, Astral is £2.99 for 200ml, so only fractionally more expensive (as a comparison Ponds cold cream is £4.49 per 50 ml pot!)

Just after I’d started using it as a cleanser I had major problems with flaky skin on my nose (due, I think, to a combination of hormones, changing my night cream as I ran out of my normal one and the cold weather), so I decided to give the cream another go, but only as a night cream. This time round I was majorly impressed. Within a couple of days my skin was back to smooth and flake free. I did wake up feeling a little shiny in the morning, but a sweep of witch hazel and using a day cream soon sorted that out.

I can’t use my regular cold cream as a moisturiser as it just doesn’t absorb at all, so I quite liked the multipurpose nature of Astral. What was left on my hands after cleansing my face made my hands nice and soft. As I travel a lot I liked it so much I actually bought one of the 50ml travel pots to take away with me and it did away with the need for separate night creams and body lotions.

I think I will continue to use it as a cleanser, but as the weather warms up I will probably end up returning to my regular night cream. It’s nice to know it’s effective for when an attack of the flakeys hits though!

Astral Light & Creamy

This one is far too light to use as a cleanser, and I’m yet to settle on a good day cream, so I gave it a go as a daily moisturiser.

The cream has a pleasant smell, and apparently contains vitamin E and soothing Aloe Vera. It’s hard to judge what difference these ingredients make, but it’s a nice cream anyway!

I used it as a day cream, and it was a nice soothing moisturiser that absorbed well and didn’t make my make up slide off my face. I think it’s not a super light cream, but it’s certainly not as heavy as the original. I don’t know how it will fare on Summer skin, only time will tell!

I do think of the light & creamy as a face cream. It doesn’t really have the same multi function feel as the original Astral. I’ll have to see how it behaves on my skin as the weather warms up before I decide whether I’ll be buying another pot, but I certainly haven’t ruled it out.

Astral is a brand I’d probably dismissed a bit before, but I was quite impressed with the performance of the products.  They were certainly “no nonsense” and I wouldn’t describe them as high tech, but recently I’ve been finding that the basic, simple skin care works far better for me on a day to day basis than all the high tech gubbins with unpronounceable ingredients I used to keep buying.

Astral Cream is available from Boots priced at £2.99 for a 200ml pot.
I haven't found the Light & Creamy online, but it is apparently
available from Boots, Superdrug, Sainsburys and "all good chemists"