Good news for skincare fans: Avene's a brand that has been quietly available here in larger Boots stores (Liffey Valley carries it, for example), but it wasn't possible to get ones product-seeking paws on it easily at all elsewhere in the country. That's now changed as the products have just received wider distribution in Ireland and is available in selected Unicare pharmacies nationwide as well as Matt O'Flaherty chemists in Galway.
That's really good news for those with either a gra for French thermal water-driven skincare (Vichy and La Roche-Posay fans, I'm looking at you here) or those with sensitive skins. Avene's a brand with an excellent rep in the pharmacy sector and in its native land, it's actually the number one.
And the focus here really is on issues: extremely dry, irritated, acne-prone, super-sensitive and redness are all addressed. There are also products for ageing and sun care as well as one of the brand's star products, its Eau Thermal spritz, €9, which gives offerings from Evian and the aforementioned Vichy and La Roche-Posay a run for their money.
Price-points are decent: Rich Compensating Cream is €30, and is the kind of moisturiser my skin would eat and drink. I'm giving it a whirl for a week or so to see if my initial feelings are going to be justified. This is thick and rich with a buttery texture that's dense and creamy - pretty much exactly what I look for in a daily cream, so fingers crossed. Cleanser for oily, blemish-prone skin is €15 and the anti-ageing products, traditionally a category which is hyper-priced, are also fair: Ystheal Cream for first lines and wrinkles is €31.
I know some of you are already fans of the brand and snap it up when you're abroad. What do you rate from the range?