Edwina Ings-Chambers: Cold cream’s cool comeback

The original miracle pot is having a moment.

A pot of cold cream arrived on my desk recently and sent me into a nostalgic beauty reverie. It’s a simple product yet it has always seemed the height of womanly glamour to me. As a fan of old movies, that notion was firmly set after watching Ingrid Bergman in Indiscreet. Arriving home, she’s straight into her dressing gown and wandering around carrying and applying her pot of cold cream with a box of tissues for removal tucked under her arm. All the while various family members chat to her – and Cary Grant rocks up. Such a simple beauty ritual but for me it had gravitas. Of course, skincare has become more complex since this 1958 film. Nevertheless, I was prompted to give cold cream another try. 

Ingrid Bergman cold cream
The multitasking moisturiser was glamorised by Ingrid Bergman in Indiscreet. Image: Alamy Stock Photo

The product that set it all off was from Pure Altitude, a range from Les Fermes de Marie spa in the Alpine resort of Megève. Its Cold Cream (around £27, pure-altitude.com) formula includes beeswax, Mont Blanc glacier water and organic edelweiss to fight free radicals (cell-damaging molecules caused by pollution and light). Unlike my traditional take on cold cream, as a cleanser, this is a bit of a rich moisturiser. It isn’t exactly wrinkle-busting stuff but it does leave skin feeling plumper and super-hydrated. Alas it’s currently only available online from the spa. 

avene cold creamAvène Cold Cream (£10, lookfantastic.com), also made with beeswax and thermal spring water, is great for hydrating sensitive or dry skin. 

While I wouldn’t use either of these as my sole moisturiser, they’re marvellous saviours when skin needs a dose of kindness and hydration, and Avène’s is also a great plumping base for foundation. 

pond's cold creamThen, of course, there’s Pond’s Cold Cream (£5.99, boots.com). This is the one I remember from my childhood. It’s a cleanser but contains moisturiser. Though the formula has changed over the years this is more like the original. These days it’s best to remove it with a warm flannel rather than tissues. It is splendid stuff – it even removes waterproof eye make-up – and leaves skin feeling top notch. 

A fresh take on foundation

Maybelline Dream Radiant LiquidAlso on the good skin front is Maybelline’s improved Dream Radiant Liquid foundation. It comes in 18 shades and offers medium coverage that doesn’t feel heavy. Thanks to added hyaluronic acid and collagen, it also moisturises and plumps skin as well as adding glow. Even one pump from the dispenser is too much for me but it lasts the day and stays looking fresh. £8.99, boots.com. 

All hail the pared-down palette

Charlotte tilbury paletteHow often do you look at make-up palettes and conclude that most of the colours are entirely impractical for daily use (and made mainly for YouTube tutorials)? In my case, very often. But Charlotte Tilbury has revamped some of her Luxury Palette eyeshadow quads so they are more ‘everyday’ than catwalk-centred. My favourite is The Rebel – with shades of sandy gold and green that are wearable. £40, johnlewis.com.

Beauty assistant: Alice Robertson