Remember the commercial in the ’80s for Gloria Vanderbilt jeans that went: “It’s a shame to call them jeans”? No, of course you don’t. But trust me, it existed.
Well, the same slogan applies to MUN No.7 Ayour Body Toning Serum*. It’s a shame to call it a body oil, as that would in some way herd this serum with other body oils. It is not the same at all. For one, the name of this serum is so exotic. Ayour means “moon” in the Berber language. It especially befits the line as “MUN” is pronounced moon.
I love the connection to the name of the company. The brand works with a Berber women’s coop to source the prickly pear seed, argan and olive oil, so they wanted to honor them. And it’s simply a beautiful name.
I must admit to being smitten by this serum since August when I first got to try it at A Night for Green Beauty. It was instant love. But as is the way with a quick flame, it’s sometimes hard to know if the love is real or just a flash of passion. At Indie Beauty Expo later that month, I got another taste of it and the love was cemented.
This body serum is a keeper!
It felt like ages waiting for its release (you know, when you love something it’s harder). I found out that the founder Munemi Imai, who is so meticulous about sourcing her ingredients, was waiting herself for one of the essential components to be ready, and she didn’t want to compromise the integrity of the formula by sourcing elsewhere. That speaks highly about this brand.
No. 7 Ayour Body Toning Serum distinguishes itself in many ways not least of all its intoxicating scent comprised of essential oils of Lavender, Frankincense, Marjoram and Neroli that combine to create an unexpected piquancy.
I’ve been trying to define how that smells and what I came up with is sensually stimulating. Zesty would imply a citrus aroma and it’s not that, nor is it floral or musky. It’s truly unique and intriguing. And who doesn’t need a little intrigue in their lives? Says the busy carpool mom.
Unlike many other natural blends, I find the scent lasts longer than most other oils too, so I take my intrigue with me wherever I go. Wink, wink. (Please, indulge me here!)
Silky glide + skin quenching
This body serum excels in texture and feel too. The optimum time to use it is after a bath or shower when skin is damp, as is true for oil-based products, because it seals in moisture and hydration and gives the oils more slip. But I also love it on dry skin when I’m short on time or need a quick dose of liquid moisture.
A few pumps applied to damp skin glide on silky smooth, leaving quenched skin in its wake. I need only a couple of pumps to do both arms and a few more pumps for torso and legs.
I tend to be heavy-handed with my oils because I love the sensation of them wrapping my skin. Even so, the beauty of this serum is its absorbency and glowing effect.
If timing and ease of use are factors, then No. 7 Ayour is even more appealing because it penetrates instantly without leaving a tacky or oily residue.
Behind the creation
Here’s a bit behind the inspiration according to Munemi, who happens to be one of the loveliest people too.
As a makeup artist, she found body oils too greasy to use in photo shoots, so she would opt for a lotion instead. But she always preferred the purity and undiluted elegance of an oil. All the nutrients are in tact so the skin receives all the benefits of the various properties of the oils.
I wanted to close the texture gap between body oil and lotion so people can enjoy the full benefit of what body oil can offer without having have to deal with greasiness.~Munemi Imai, MUN Skin
It’s such an unrivaled experience, that I had to find out how Munemi tweaked the formula to achieve the right balance of exquisite texture and promising results.
Q & A
Q: What unique ingredient/s give No. 7 Ayour the right slip and how did you come up with this formula?
A: For me, creating a formula to achieve the texture and performance I seek starts with a lot of reading, research, and sourcing various plant oils from different suppliers. I source from multiple suppliers for each ingredient to test the texture, smell and quality. I then select the main ingredients and start creating different formulas and test them until I get to the point where I can start tweaking and adjusting a little amount of each ingredient to make it just right.
I worked on this formula for over 2 years. I actually thought of using Coconut Oil or Monoi Oil as the main ingredient and was initially imagining a much sweeter scent and incorporating Vanilla. But then I struggled with achieving the “this is it” base formula.
One day, my business partner Anas got sent some Organic Food Grade Moroccan Olive Oil from the same women’s cooperative we’d been working with to source our Prickly Pear Seed and Argan Oils. They had started experimenting with it and it came out well so that they sent some to Anas for eating (he is also Moroccan). He gave me the oil to taste as well and when I traveled to Morocco for my research trip I learned to eat Olive Oil with eggs in the morning and came to really love Moroccan Olive Oil. So of course I was really happy to have it and use it for cooking. But then I thought to myself, what if I start formulating with this Olive Oil. I also loved the idea of putting the same Olive Oil I love to eat on my skin.
This specific Moroccan Olive Oil is very unique and ideal for body serum as it has this almost sweet scent that’s great when mixed with the essential oil blend, also the texture is neither too rich nor too dry. I built the formula around it. It also contains Cucumber Seed Oil, Rosehip Seed Oil, our signature ingredient Prickly Pear Seed Oil, and non-GMO Vitamin E. The essential oil blend helps with penetration as well.
Q: How do you feel about the end result? What are the expected results on skin over time?
A: I love it, and all of our testers loved how moisturizing it is while also absorbing quickly. One of our testers was in her 40s and going through her first pregnancy. When we gave her a sample, she told us that she was starting to get some stretch marks, but within a few weeks she joyously let us know that her new stretch marks had disappeared.
This is now the only product I use to moisturize my body. After turning 40, I started seeing wrinkles around my knees that I had never seen before, but with this body serum, they became much less visible and every time I use it, they smooth out. This is a great formula for photo-damaged skin and it boasts anti-aging effects to achieve smoother, healthier and firmer looking skin.
Q: Can all skin types use this serum? Sensitive? Dry?
A: Yes, it is suitable for all skin including sensitive. Also it’s safe for mums to be and new mums who are nursing.
Q: Are there any little tips or tricks to applying it or any other ways to use it (like in hair or something)?
A: Applying it on damp skin after a shower or bath is best, but it’s formulated for easy application on both dry and damp skin without any greasiness. It’s so easy. You can even keep it at your office to apply anytime anywhere. Also the aromatherapeutic effects are calming and relaxing on the mind. It contains Essential Oils of Lavender, Frankincense, Marjoram and Neroli collectively work together wonderfully for both skin and mind. We constantly get comments about how refreshed and relaxed people feel after using it. It’s also great for dry cuticles and nails—they’ll be soft and younger looking.
This is such a stunning body serum. It rises to our already high expectations of MUN Skin. If I had to compare, I’d place it on par with the luxe Kypris Inflorescence, which I adore too, just to give you an idea of its elegance.
If you’ve been hunting for the perfect body product, then this serum is for you! I can’t wait for you to try it.
*MUN sent me a bottle of the serum for review. All opinions are my own. If you choose to purchase the serum, I will earn a small percentage of the purchase when you use affiliate links. Thank you in advance for your support of a small business and of my blog!