Reviewed by Andy

Let’s start with the big selling point of Mukti Aloe Vera Moisturiser ($35.50) — it smells like cake. Lemon cake. From Marie Antoinette’s Petit Trianon pantry. As aromatherapy, it’s grand. As a daily moisturizer, it’s perfectly adequate but nothing life-changing.

With my stubbornly greasy-yet-dry 30-year-old-skin (thanks, Retin A!), this is a great product on paper. Aloe vera soothes, calendula fights free radicals, and vitamin B5 promotes healing. Geranium helps lighten blemishes while juniper, lemon and grapefruit are all acne-fighting antiseptics.

In combination, they form a light gel that doesn’t really sink into the skin. It left me with a shiny film for morning staff meetings, and I had to re-apply on especially scaly days. Despite the refreshing, uplifting, DELICIOUS scent, I missed my old dermatologist-prescribed standby: creamy, squalene-rich Biafine. In fact, after a month on Mukti, I think my skin actually looks much worse for wear — dry, red and STILL shiny.

While it didn’t cause any breakouts, this Mukti moisturizer failed to improve on the fragile chaos of my combination skin. The verdict:  the results aren’t special enough to justify spending $35.50 on something you could whip up in your own kitchen after a trip to the Whole Foods beauty aisle or perusing the many holistic, DIY beauty blogs online. The aroma is lovely but freshly squeezed lemon in my water will probably do more to keep this face supple, clear and hydrated.

Ingredients: Certified Organic Aloe Vera (Aloe Barbadensis) Leaf Juice; Certified Organic Calendula (Calendula Officinalis) Extract; Glycerin (Vegetarian); Vitamin B5 (Panthenol); Sclerotium Gum; Certified Organic Essential Oils of Geranium (Geranium Maculatum), Juniper (Juniperus Communis) & Lemon (Citrus Limonum); Grapefruit Seed (Citrus Grandis) Extract