Each of Pevonia Botanica's products focuses on a specific plant extract and in the case of its neck and decollete cream, Pevonia's Ligne Esthebuste ($67), it is the sausage tree. Its proper name is kigelia africana and, appropriately, African folklore has it that the extract will firm breast tissue. I have been using Ligne Esthebuste and, to my surprise, there may something to it.

This could, of course, be wishful thinking on my part. There is absolutely no clinical evidence that I could find that supports the breast firming claims. What is certain though is that kigelia africana (with its gorgeous bat-pollinated flowers and bizarre monster sausage-like fruit) is an antibacterial, a "significant" (in the words of one study) anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. The leaves and flowers are rich in hexadecanoic acid, a fatty acid, and the other important component is verminoside. There are also steroids that explain why the plant has traditionally been used to treat eczema.

On balance, I don't buy the breast tissue firming theory, but as a powerful anti-inflammatory, kigelia africana should improve skin elasticity. My test so far suggests that it does.

Oh, by the way, I was discussing only the other day with my esthetician that breast firming treatments (that don't involve silicone implants) are going to be the next big thing. Witness, in addition to Pevonia's, a recent crop of new boob creams including Rodial's Boob Job. Remember, you read it here first.

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Water, kigelia africana fruit extract, gycerin, carbomer, polysorbate-20, sodium chloride, pectin, chamomile, phenoxyethnol, sodium citrate, methysilsothiazolinone