When I bought the Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask and then tweeted, "Is this the beginning of the end?", the answer was yes. Unequivocally. Since then, I don't care to think about how much money I've spent on skin care. My most indulgent purchase to date has been Omorovicza Queen of Hungary Mist. There should just be a general warning against buying anything from a brand that you can barely pronounce or spell. Omo-what? I love me a good mist, and this seemed to be the crème de la crème of mists. Repeated exposure to it from Caroline Hirons, Vivianna Does Makeup and Liana Beauty gradually swayed me. It transformed from something completely out of the question to something I spontaneously bought from Look Fantastic (the 15% discount helped) after a particularly long, boring day at work.
Ingredients: Aqua (Hungarian Thermal Water), Rosa Damascena Flower Water, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Flower Water, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Leaf Water, Glycerin, Polysorbate 20, Phenoxyethanol, Disodium EDTA, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Saccharomyces (Hungarian Thermal Water) Ferment Extract, Ethylhexylglycerin, Mannitol, Malpighia Punicifolia (Acerola) Fruit Extract, Chlorella Vulgaris/Lupinus Albus Protein Ferment, Pectin, Phospholipids, Yeast Extract
I was on the lookout for a hydrating toner per Caroline Hirons's recommendation to use two toners after cleansing: one to exfoliate and one to put the moisture back in. I'm still undecided about the need for an exfoliating toner (mainly because I'm using Alpha-H Micro Cleanse, Alpha-H Liquid Gold and Trilogy Age Proof Active Enzyme Cleansing Cream with my Olay face brush and I don't want to go overboard with the exfoliation), but a hydrating toner seemed vitally missing from my routine (Avene Thermal Spray doesn't quite cut it since it's basically just water, and La Roche-Posay Serozinc isn't around). I was contemplating the super affordable Sukin Hydrating Mist Toner (simple but effective ingredients), REN Tonic Moisture Mist or Balance Me Skin Bright Hydrating Mist, but in the end, I thought I might as well go straight for what I really wanted. The Omorovicza isn't vastly more expensive on a cost per millilitre basis compared with the Balance Me (£0.33/ml vs. £0.46/ml), especially after the 15% discount I redeemed.
Is this stuff worth it? Not really. I bought it blind, having never seen it or tried it in person, and the first thing that struck me was how different the smell was to what I was expecting. I was anticipating something rose-scented but also a little juicy and fruity, kind of like a cross between Jurlique Rosewater Balancing Mist and if the Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask was formulated into a spray. But it's more like fragranced sea water that dries down to a mellow apple scent. I don't dislike it, but I don't love it either.
I find the best way to apply it is after cleansing in the evening, spraying two pumps into my palm, rubbing my hands together, then pressing my hands onto my face. I don't like spritzing directly onto the face, as I find that really wasteful (I usually need a ridiculous number of sprays to feel anything). I've been using this consistently for a couple of weeks, and I can't say I've seen any noticeable effect or difference in that time. I feel it's basically the same as my DIY toner of Caudalie Divine Oil and water. It gives the skin slightly more moisture and refines the appearance of skin very subtly after it's used, but I don't see it performing any miracles or being an indispensable product to my routine. Apparently a key ingredient is apple pectin (though it's third last on the list) which "provides long lasting hydration and restores suppleness".
At the end of the day, this toner is a little bit of luxury that's pleasant to use, but hardly a necessity. I like it because of the glamorous, evocative name, the gorgeous packaging and the fact it has no alcohol. I remember reading this clearly biased review on MakeupAlley and having a chuckle, because it sums up any objections to this mist in quite a tongue-in-cheek manner. Yes, it's expensive — I probably wouldn't have purchased at full price — and there are much more affordable alternatives that likely would produce similar results. But wanting it primarily because it seems nice to have is in my eyes still a perfectly valid reason.