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Tried and tested: face creams

This is a high-end gathering of face creams this week and, if they seem pricier than you may be used to, you are worth it. The hallmark for this group is that you needn't lash half the container on your face in order to feel like you're getting the most benefit. As we like to say here at T&T: less is more -- the less of a product you have to use, the more benefit you will receive, and the best value for your hard-earned dosh.

DERMALOGICA Dynamic Skin Recovery SPF 30, €50 * * * * The pump dispenser does almost too good a job of depositing product into your palm. Easy does it, because you don't want to waste a drop of this. Once you find the correct amount, it glides all over the skin to get soaked up really quickly, without it feeling like you've skimped on your facial care.

LUSH Skin Nanny, €30 * * * * * Ooh, this stuff is rich. So rich that, in my opinion, it serves better as a night cream. If you're an early bird, then you'll have plenty of time in the morning to let this settle into your skin. If not, you may find that your face is somewhat too shiny for the application of make-up. Since the barest bit of this will give great coverage, it will last for donkey's.

CLINIQUE Turnaround Concentrate, €35 * * * The Turnaround line is fab, and this presents well upon application: you don't need much to get good coverage and it penetrates in a snap. Perhaps it is that speed which ultimately lets the product down: my face actually felt rather dry afterwards. Using more doesn't help ... bummer.

ESPA 24-Hour Moisturising Complex, €45 * * * Love the look of this: with its faux marble lid, it's exactly the kind of thing you'd find being used in a spa. It's texture certainly pampers your face, but, oh, dear, the scent of the stuff -- not nice at all. This is a terrible pity, as it absorbs really well and leaves behind a gloriously moisturised surface. I tried holding my breath, but due to its superior quality, it took a while to sink in; I didn't fancy turning blue in the face over this one.

DARPHIN Arovita C Energetic Firming Cream, €55 * * * * And at the opposite end of the spectrum is this one, which smells like a fresh meadow on a beautiful summer's day. It's hard to avoid just lashing this all over your face and, indeed, on any other place on your body. It's simply gorgeous ... except that this one, like the Clinique, seems to leave some unwanted dryness behind. Still, an amazing scent.

All products were tested over the course of four weeks