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KPS Essentials: When Rocket Science Meets Green Beauty (And A Valentine's Giveaway!)

I was introduced to Natalie and Ron, the founders of KPS Essentials at the W.E.L.L Summit last year. They were then a new-to-me brand, and my curiosity was piqued by the fact that Ron was an ex-rocket scientist who had been exposed to the beauty industry from a young age because of his skincare formulator mother, and he holds several trade secrets.
Natalie had an equally compelling story- she was selling cosmetics for Nordstrom in the late 80s when an earthquake hit and one of the high-end products she represented burned through the carpet, exposing the concrete underneath. It terrified her to imagine what the products were doing to her customers' skin, and she eventually went on to become a certified aesthetician and started up a few spas while working towards her goal of creating an organic skincare line. 

[Credit: KPS Essentials]
When Natalie and Ron met in 2012, they connected over their shared passion for skincare and decided to combine their experience and expertise to start a luxury skincare line like no other, and KPS Essentials was born. All their products are made from organic, food-grade ingredients harnessed by advanced botanical science technology with proven results.
The skincare junkie in me let out a little yelp when a box of products tailored for my skin concerns arrived at my doorstep a few weeks later, and I am excited to finally share my thoughts with you.
Brightening Cream Cleanser ($25.00 for 1.7 oz)
The Brightening Cream Cleanser has not been officially launched, so this is a teaser. It is a lightweight cleanser that provides gentle exfoliation while thoroughly cleansing your skin. Over time, the family of Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) can help with the tone and texture of your skin while fading hyperpigmentation and sun damage.
After removing my eye makeup with coconut oil, I massage 3 pumps of the cleanser onto damp skin and then let it sit for about a minute before wiping it off with a warm face cloth. Depending on how much makeup I have on, I do a second cleanser with 1-2 pumps to make sure I get everything off. This is a more affordable option to my favorite inFiore Cleansing Emulsion and it gets the job done equally well, although this does carry a more medicinal scent.
Ingredients: *Aloe Leaf Juice, *Olive Fruit Oil, *Jojoba Esters, *Apricot Kernel Oil, Emulsifying Wax, Palmitic Acid, Stearic Acid, Myristic Acid, Glycerin, Vitamin E, *Soybean Oil, Ethyl Lauroyl Arginate HCl, Glycolic Acid, Tartaric Acid, Malic Acid, *Shea Butter, *Mango Seed Butter, *Sugar Cane Extract, *Bilberry Fruit Extract, *Sugar Maple Extract, *Orange Peel Extract, *Lemon Peel Extract, *Cranberry Fruit Extract, *Green Tea Leaf Extract, *White Willow Bark Extract, *Alcohol, *Neem Seed Oil, *Rosemary Leaf Extract, *Sunflower Seed Oil, Xantham Gum, Tetrasodium EDTA and *Propriety Blend of Essential Oils
* Organic

I confirmed with KPS Essentials that the percentage of Tetrasodium EDTA in this is less than 0.1%, although given that this ingredient is not found in any of their other products. If you don’t feel comfortable about certain ingredients and its effect on your skin, research them and decide for yourself! 

Probiotic Toner ($22.00 for 1.7 oz)
The main ingredient in the Probiotic Toner  is Witch Hazel, a medicinal plant that has proven to be one of the most effective natural skin healer. It contains high levels of  tannins and polyphenols and helps to remove excess oil from the skin without drying it out, while preventing signs of aging and stopping cellular damage that can lead to skin cancer. The toner also contains Apple Cider Vinegar, which offers AHAs that will remove dead skin and balance pH. 
After cleansing with the Brightening Cream Cleanser, I use 2-3 pumps of the toner on a reusable cotton pad and wipe it over my face and neck. It helps to remove every last stubborn bit of makeup and my skin feels so much smoother and radiant after. If I am honest though, toning is probably the most skipped step in my routine so I'm trying to be more disciplined about it!
Ingredients: Witch Hazel Extract,  *Acetic Acid (Apple Cider Vinegar) and Proprietary Blend of Essential Oils 
* Organic

Renū Face Cream ($69.00 for 0.5 oz / 15 ml)
The Renū Face Cream is formulated with organic oils and DermaNu Technology that is clinically validated to boost skin hydration, collagen, volume and reduce hyperpigmentation and acne. It does this by encouraging the growth of healthy skin cells, rebuilding your skin hydration barrier with a propriety blend of hyaluronic acids and using plant-based amino acids to stimulate the production of collagen to reveal more resilient skin.

It is easy, of course, to simply inflate a product's performance with scientific words and  paid endorsements, but KPS has gone the extra step of offering a no-question-asked refund if you are unsatisfied with this cream. Although a skin oil devotee, I decided to give this face cream a chance and have been pleasantly surprised by how much I like it! After cleansing, I mist my face liberally and then massage 2 pumps over my face and neck. It is soon absorbed to a matt finish and keeps my skin happily plump and hydrated, but never feels heavy.

Ingredients: Deionized Water, *Argania spinosa (Argan) Nut Oil, *Botanically-Infused Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, *Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, *Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba Seed) Oil,  Steric Acid,  Xylitylglucoside, Anhydroxylitol,  Xylitol,  C14-22 Alcohols,  C12-20 Alkyl Glucoside (Plant-Based Emulsifier),  Sodium Hyaluronic Acid,  Palmitoyl Isolucene (Plant-Based Amino Acid For Collagen Growth),  Co Enzyme Q10, *Tocopherol (Vitamin E),  Ethyl Lauroyl Arginate HCl (Plant-Based Preservative) and  *Propriety Blend of Essential Oils
* Organic

Renū C+ Serum ($69.00 for 0.5 oz / 15 ml)
The Renū C+ Serum is made as a companion to the Renū Face Cream, and it provides a double dose of collagen stimulation from the Vitamin C and the DermaNu Technology. Excessive exposure to UV light or pollutants can decrease the Vitamin C content in your epidermis, and studies (here and here) have found that topical application may result in greater photoprotection than oral supplements. Adding a Vitamic C product to your skincare routine can help treat UV-induced photodamage and boost your collagen synthesis, keeping your skin firm and youthful.
In the mornings I skip the cleanser and just splash my face with water, and then I apply a single pump of the C+ Serum onto my face, and after it has been absorbed I layer my sunscreen over it to optimize UV protection (KPS does have an SPF15 Primer although I have never tried it). The smell and texture of the serum is very similar to the face cream, and over time this is said to lighten pigmentation, but I haven't tested this long enough to attest to that.
Ingredients: Deionized Water, *Punica Pranatum (Pomegranate) Seed Oil, *Juglans Regia (Walnut) Oil, *Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, *Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, *Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba Seed) Oil, Steric Acid,  Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate (Vitamin C), Sodium Hyaluronic Acid, *Tocopherol  (Vitamin E), *Camellia Sinesis Leaf Extract (Green Tea), *Aloe Barbadensis Leaf (Aloe Vera), Xylitylglucoside, Anhydroxylitl, Xylitol, C14-22 Alcohols, C12-20 Alkyl Glucoside (Plant-Based Emulsifier),  Ethyl Lauroyl Arginate HCl (Plant-Based Preservative) and *Proprietary Blend of Essential Oils 
* Organic

Want your skin to glow for Valentine's Day? I am partnering with KPS Essentials to give away a set of their products (everything featured in this review except the cream cleanser swapped out for their Antioxidant Eye Serum) worth $239- click HERE to find out how you can win!

The products in this post were kindly provided for consideration, however all opinions expressed are my own.

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