Dermawell is an unashamedly serious skincare range. The brand’s no-frills approach means there is not a hint of pink in the packaging. It does not make outlandish promises that its products will deliver eternal youth in lotions and potions.
Instead the range, born out of a partnership between Well pharmacy and leading Italian derma-cosmetic experts Unifarco, is focussed on the science, not the pretty packaging.
Dermawell has paired high quality ingredients with proven formulas and it’s after a place in your beauty cabinet.
But could cosmetics which start from just £5 really deliver beautiful results?
I attended the launch at the Royal College of Physicians, a fitting venue to introduce skincare developed by the UK’s largest independent pharmacy chain, to find out.
Over glasses of Prosecco and surprisingly delicious rhubarb juice, a team of Italian cosmetic developers and Well CEO John Nuttall talked us through the new brand.
Nuttall explained that Dermawell was the pharmacy chain’s first step into the beauty area.
“We want to give our customers the very best quality of product,” he said. “My wife is really fussy, and she loves this.”
He highlighted how affordable the range was.
“With the advent of Aldi and Lidl, customers are expecting to get great products at reasonable prices.”
Researchers from Unifarco outlined the structure of the range, which has three lines: hyaluronic acid, pro collagen and suncare.
It is the Hyaluronic Acid Gel which the scientists are clearly most proud of. Researchers toiled for six years to get the formula just right. The acid is incredible at retaining moisture – one molecule alone can hold up to 1000 times its weight in water. And the gel boasts 40 per cent concentrate of the acid, the highest level available in a cosmetic on the market.
The gel is my stand-out product from the range. It is a pearly white and seeps into the skin easily. Highly moisturising, it softens dry patches and leaves your complexion with a healthy glow, but without an oily residue or too much shine.
A top tip is to apply it before putting on your makeup. It creates a smooth, plumped-up canvas for foundation and concealer and also works as a primer, ensuring your makeup stays put throughout the day.
Beauty obsessives worried about wrinkles should check out the pro-collagen line.
The intensive moisturising mask floods the skin with collagen, moisturising deep down in the epidermis and filling every wrinkle. Suitable for all skin types, it increases the skin elasticity, reducing the appearance of wrinkles.
The body creams are particularly useful if you have stretch marks. The rich lotion feels luxurious and disguises marks, blemishes and scars. It’s perfect for skin around the neck and thighs – areas which are particularly prone to sagging.
The suncare line includes specially formulated suncream offering protection from UV rays but without the stickiness and sickly scent of many suncare lotions.
All the products come in refreshingly retro packaging that recall old fashioned, no nonsense pharmacies. The pump bottles, sprays and pots have a clean design without any fussy graphics or glaring colours, just simple labels explaining the ingredients and the science.
With the range on sale in 100 Well pharmacies at between £5.49 and £11.99, the price point is hard to argue with.
As the beauty market is flooded with more products than ever promising radiant, wrinkle-free, plump and glowing skin, a new range needs a schtick to stand out.
And Dermawell is clear about what it offers: high quality ingredients and proven formulas at extremely affordable prices. That’s a good selling point.
Words: Isolde Walters