So I've been reading about these Steam Creams for a few years now but have refrained for the longest time! Why? Because, well, just look at them! Of course I want all the adorable tins (have you seen the new Fabric of Japan designs? OMG - want!!!), but seriously, how many giant tins of the same darn cream do I need? One. Actually, a fifth of one, may be even less, because I scooped mine out into a much smaller 0.5fl oz. glass jar (from Avon Hydrofirming Eye Cream) in order to seal up the tin and keep the rest of it fresh. Even then, I've been using this glass jar for the past two months and still haven't gotten through half of it! Should I just start slapping this stuff all over or what?!?
Clockwise from top left: Gris-Gris (black cat on yellow), Fragaria (strawberries on sky blue), Daisy (girl on royal gingham), and Yume (sakura on metallic pink).
This is a multi-purpose cream that can be used everywhere on the body, the face included. So if you're a one-product kind of gal, this is your best friend, may be even a travel buddy because you won't need to bring a separate hand cream or body lotion, pretty much a one size fits all in a pretty and reusable tin! But of course I'm picky and fussy, plus I have a gazillion other hand creams and body lotion, so I only use this cream on my face. And all that said, the tin is also too big to bring in a carry on, so you'll have to scoop it out into a TSA-friendly container.
I kept Gris-Gris for myself while Fragaria went to grandma, Daisy went to mum in law, and Yume went to mum.
Yes, there's always the hygiene ick factor when it comes to a multi-purpose cream in a big jar. I had the same problem with Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream in a giant tub, which I ended up giving away needing the extra help to finish it up. Having to dig my fingers in is one thing, but digging my fingers in, rub them all over, then dig in again? No can do. I'd much rather restrict all that to just my cleansed face and neck. Not to mention when I first open this up, the cream was everywhere underneath of the lid, and the tin is sealed with nothing but a tiny oval piece of tape.
But other than the fact that the tin is huge, and that's not a complaint by any means, the cream itself is excellent and I love it! In fact, as a multi-purpose cream I like it much better than Cetaphil! Sure it absorbs just as cleanly and quickly and is just as effective, but I like its thinner texture better. Also, it feels the same everywhere I apply it, whereas Cetaphil is nice on my face but greasy on my neck and even sticky on the back of my hand, which was just odd. Another difference is that this Steam Cream is scented with a strong lavender essential oil fragrance that may not be everyone's cup of tea. I don't dislike the smell, but I will admit it took some getting used to and was overwhelming the first few times.
I use this Steam Cream as a moisturizer sealant, the last step in my routine morning prior to sunscreen. When I was still visiting with my parents I also used it at night, although here is SF it's not thick enough for overnight treatment and therefore reduced to morning use only. Overall, it's been working really well for me! I would even say it's damn amazing in that it actually helps all my skincare layers absorb. I know it sounds counterintuitive, after all it's the last and not the first step. But in my experience, when I accidentally use too much of something and the layers turn a tad sticky or take longer to absorb, all I have to do is top them all off with this cream and -slurp- it's as if the cream turns into a vacuum, pulling everything along on its way in and keeps them there! That's why I call it a moisturizer sealant. And for this purpose it's earned a solid stay in morning routine, at least until I get bored. Considering how much of it I still have, I can't guarantee that day won't come, but for now, I'm enjoying it very much!
For $18 a tin, it's an excellent purchase in my humble opinion. If you can't use it on your face, use it everywhere else. A good hand or body cream costs around the same anyway. Plus you'll have various gorgeous designs to choose from and reuse after the cream is gone. I would collect them all if I could, although I wouldn't recommend hoarding the cream just for the tins as they do spoil ^.^'