The Beauty Brand That Made Me Believe In Skincare Again

Faced with random breakouts and skin that was making her miserable, Hannah Banks-Walker found solace in a cream cleanser that changed her routine for the better

best skincare for sensitive skin

by Hannah Banks-Walker |
Updated on

This is not an ad. I feel obliged to preface what I’m about to say with that declaration, as I’m aware I’m about to employ some classic hyperbole, so taken am I with this skincare brand. For I’ve always had fairly good skin. I’ve never suffered from some of the conditions I know can be debilitating – severe acne or rosacea, for example – and have gotten away with the odd night of no cleansing without catastrophic results. It wasn’t until a few months ago, when I suddenly noticed my skin changing for the worse, that I realised how inextricably linked skin is to our emotional core. It’s easy to dismiss something as seemingly inconsequential as a spot, for example, but over time, the inconsequential can become overwhelming. At least, that’s what happened to me.

I started to develop acne on my jawline and chin. At first, I was confused as to where it had come from and starting throwing products at it in the vain hope it may disappear. When that didn’t work, I sat quietly in my despair. I woke up every morning with a sinking feeling; I didn’t even want to look in the mirror for fear that the angry, red marks on my skin were still there, angrier than ever. It became the seven stages of skincare grief. At the time, I told myself I was being ridiculous – how could I be so emotionally fragile that a few spots could have such an effect on me? But it makes sense – skin is, after all, the largest organ of the body. And it’s always visible.

After much research, I heard about Sönd (and started seeing it on Instagram), a brand that champions alkaline skincare with products aimed at all skin types. I started using the cream cleanser, as well as Sönd’s Jump Start supplements (two every morning) and gradually, I noticed a marked improvement. But why? How did this random product cure what so many others hadn’t? “Sönd was born out of 11 years of research into cell health and regeneration,” says Markus Goess-Saurau, who founded the brand with his friend Eileen Donoghue. “A key finding was that cells need to be in an alkaline environment in order to be healthy and regenerate most effectively. Other skincare brands formulate their products to be acidic so we felt there was a need for a new brand that takes a radically different approach.”

That different approach is all based on an alkaline structure – the products are formulated to create that alkaline environment, ultimately boosting hydration and regeneration in the deeper skin cells that remain untouched by most products. I found that every product I tried – the cleanser, the serum and the night cream – to be extremely gentle on skin, so I soon became hooked. As for the supplements, I’ve always been fairly cynical about them but I have to say that since I started taking them (in conjunction with using the skincare) my skin has transformed completely. “They’ve actually sold three times more than any other product,” says Goess-Saurau. “As well as improving the health of skin, customers have reported noticing changes to how they feel, including feeling more energised.”

While my job means I am lucky enough to have access to pretty much any beauty product, as I’m required to try anything before recommending it, I had started to veer away from skincare a bit. Nothing I used was working and, as my skin felt like it was in dire straits, I was reluctant to try and more products, in case they made it worse. Sönd really did reignite my belief in skincare and the wonderful way it can make you feel if you find something you really love. And I’m not the only one. Sönd regularly receives testimonials, praise and just gushing messages of thanks from its customers, all of whom are only too keen to share their experiences with the products. Sönd was started with the mission of helping people feel good about their skin. Having skin that is stressed or breaking out can have a big impact on people’s confidence and how they choose to live their lives,” Goess-Saurau says. “Receiving emails and videos from our customers of how our products have positively impacted their lives is definitely what we are most proud of. It is our reason for existence and what drives us every day.”

Even as a beauty editor, I find the saturated skincare market a difficult one to navigate. After all, without really trying something, how do you know if it’s going to work? That’s something that Goess-Saurau and Donoghue have been all too aware of when building their own brand. “Many people have had a bad experience when trying a new product and are therefore very cautious,” says Goess-Saurau. “It requires a lot of trust for a person to decide to try our products and developing this trust takes time. We do what we can to remove the barriers for people to try our products offering free returns, 30 day guarantee, pay later and samples. The biggest things that helps build trust is endorsements from credible publications and customer testimonials which took time to build.”

By focussing on organic, gentle ingredients, Sönd has managed to create products that really do suit all skin types, even sensitive skin. Goess-Saurau says that this is simply because they’re undermining the most common skincare myth of all. “The 'acid mantle' that ordinary skincare brands talk about refers to the very outermost layer of mostly dead skin cells – ignoring the living and emerging cells below. If an acidic based product is applied to the skin and absorbed into the deeper layers it can create an acidic stress. This is an environment our cells can’t function in effectively which can lead to skin irritations.” Next, Sönd plans to apply that concept to a body lotion, to “allow customers to take care of all areas of their skin.”

I know that I’ll be first in the queue to try that. Until then, you’ll find me in my alkaline environment.

SHOP: The Products That Made Me Believe In Skincare Again


The Su00f6nd Products That Made Me Believe In Skincare Again

Clean Slate Cream Cleanser, £221 of 5

Clean Slate Cream Cleanser, £22

Sidekick Day Cream, £342 of 5

Sidekick Day Cream, £34

Jump Start Silica Supplements, £283 of 5

Jump Start Silica Supplements, £28

Strength Training Serum, £424 of 5

Strength Training Serum, £42

Midnight Feast Night Cream, £385 of 5

Midnight Feast Night Cream, £38

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