Christmas skincare: Jan Marini Holiday Exfoliator review



As you’d expect there’s a lot of Christmas-themed makeup and skincare around right now; much of it exquisite and lovely (and the’s the thought that counts). So here’s an extra-special Christmas skincare product, the Jan Marini Holiday Exfoliator. I think you’ll love it – as long as you use it sparingly.

Jan Marini Skin Research is a US brand based in San Jose. It’s been around for over 20 years but seems to be much better known in the USA than in the UK. It’s the kind of high tech skincare found in pharmacies rather than your regular beauty aisles.

The Holiday Exfoliator is a yearly release for Jan Marini, with previous scents including Cranberry and Sugar Cookie. For 2015 the limited edition scent is Sugar Plum, and it’s exactly as sweet and fruity as the name suggests.

It’s packaged in a lovely purple outer box and chunky perspex and metallic effect jar. Historically, purple has long been a colour associated with royalty, so by giving this you are effectively saying You Are The Queen Of Everything. So yeah, give it to yourself. You deserve it.

The exfoliator works via uniquely designed spherical dissolving beads, proteolytic enzymes and glycolic acid to gently and safely scrub and resurface the skin. Generally, when you exfoliate, whatever you apply afterwards will go on more evenly, so serum will sink in better and makeup will apply more smoothly. It’s like prepping your canvas for whatever you plan to apply.



Water/Aqua/Eau, Glycolic Acid, Cetyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Stearyl Alcohol, Hexyl Laurate, Lauryl Methacrylate/Glycol Dimethacrylate Crosspolymer, Sorbitol, Sodium Hydroxide, Cetearyl Alcohol, Lauryl Glucoside, Caramel, Carica Papaya (Papaya) Fruit Extract, Pectin, Glycerin, Papain, Bromelain, Camellia Oleifera (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice Powder, Retinyl Palmitate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Tocopherol, Dehydroxanthan Gum, Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Cetearyl Glucoside, Chondrus Crispus (Carrageenan) Extract, Citric Acid, Propylene Glycol, Fragrance (Parfum), Sucrose, Maltodextrin, Palmitic Acid, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Benzyl Benzoate, Limonene, Potassium Sorbate, Chlorphenesin, Benzyl Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol, CI 15985 (Yellow 6)

Directions for use:
After cleansing, gently apply an even layer to wet face using circular motions for approximately 15-30 seconds. Mild stinging or tingling may occur. Gently remove using a washcloth with tepid water and blot dry. May be used two to three times per week, AM or PM.


As you can see, Jan Marini Holiday Exfoliator looks a LOT like Christmas cake mix, minus the raisins. Despite the reference to ‘beads’ in the description, it doesn’t feel like there are beads in there at all. It has a soft, paste-like consistency to massage rather than harshly rub across the face.

However, do keep to the recommended usage of no more than 30 seconds. The first time I used it, I was enjoying the sensation and the sugar plum scent so much that I just kept massaging it over my face with no regard to the time it took. I was basically just standing there idly enjoying rubbing Christmas cake into my face.

Don’t judge me, you’d do the same.

BIG MISTAKE – when I washed it off, my face was visibly irritated, went as red as Santa’s coat and didn’t calm down for several minutes.

The second time I used it I deliberately counted one elephant, two elephant until I got to ten elephants, then a few more swooshes before removing it with water. That time, it turned out perfectly and my skin was left much smoother, softer and brighter. So the moral of the story is – if it says no more than 30 seconds, take heed because there’s a reason for that.

Because of the scent, this is probably not a product for those of you with very sensitive skins, but if you are not normally bothered by scented products then go for it. Also, this may not be for you if you have a latex allergy, since it contains papaya which is a natural source of latex.

It would make a wonderful Christmas gift for the skincare fan in your life because they may well not have heard of the brand. It’s definitely fancy without being overly girly. And everyone wants to rub sugar plum Christmas cake into their face, don’t they? Just don’t try to eat it afterwards.


Jan Marini Holiday Exfoliator in Sugar Plum is available here from Dermacare Direct RRP £45 for 57g/2oz. UK shipping is free and worldwide shipping is available.

Dermacare Direct usually ship quite fast, so if it’s getting close to Christmas and you have questions about shipping, talk to them on Twitter or Facebook.


*PR Sample