Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil review

Is Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil worth the splurge? 5 years ago, I’d have said , “hell yeah!” This oil is super nourishing. It can makes even the driest of skin types softer and smoother and plumps up fine lines and wrinkles, so they look smaller. Now, with so many cheaper dupes around, I’m not so sure. So, I’ve put it to the test. Curious to know how it went? Here’s the verdict:

Key Ingredients In Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil: What Makes It Work?


Most oils out there are full of crap. They contain a few drops of Argan oil, Marula oil, or whatever oil they claim to be, and fill up the rest of the formula with all kinds of synthetic stuff. Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil is different. It contains only ONE ingredient: 100% unrefined Marula oil.

Derived from the kernels of the fruits of the Marula trees (Sclerocarya birrea), Marula oil is loaded with oleic acid, a moisturising fatty acid that creates a barrier on the skin to slow down water loss and protect your complexion from environmental aggressors.

This is great news for dry skin. Your skin’ll soak up all the goodness and get soft and smooth again. Oily skin? Stay away. As a rule, the higher the oleic acid content of an oil, the higher the chance it’ll give you a breakout. Don’t risk it.

P.S. Marula oil also has antioxidant properties that helps you fight free radicals and UV damage.Used regularly, it’ll help you slow down aging and look younger.

Related: What Are The Best Facial Oils For Dry Skin?


It’s an oil, so expect an oily texture. Said that, for an oil, the texture is pretty lightweight. It still takes a couple of minutes to fully absorb into the skin, though.


It’s fragrance-free. I like that. Fragrance is the most irritating ingredient used in skincare. Drunk Elephant knows this. That’s why fragrance is one of the ingredients they’ll never use. And your skin is grateful for that.

How To Use It

Like all oils, it’s the last step of your skincare routine at night IN PLACE OF your moisturiser. If your skin is so dry, moisturiser alone won’t do, go ahead and apply this on top. Otherwise, use it alone. You could use it during the day after serum and before sunscreen, but it may cause pilling.


The oil comes in a sleek white and yellow bottle with a drop applicator. It’s beautiful. I adore the simple yet elegant packaging of Drunk Elephant products. They look so good on your vanity. Plus, the bottle is practical to use. I have the sample, travel-size version. The full size has a dropper applicator, which is ideal for an oil.

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Performance & Personal Opinion

I use facial oils at night. Sure, you could layer them under makeup, but I find them a little too greasy and prone to pilling in the daytime. Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil is the exception. It layers well under makeup and doesn’t feel greasy on once it has fully absorbed.

There’s no doubt it’s super moisturising. I have combination skin that just can’t decide what to do. T-zone is oilier, cheeks are drier. Come winter, everything dries up. Switch to summer and my t-zone pumps up oil production another notch.

I find this oil is great for my complexion during the winter time. It helps strengthens my skin’s protective barrier, so the cold winter weather don’t irritate or suck all the moisture out of it. Talking about moisture, this makes my skin so soft and smooth.

Now that we’re transitioning to warmer weather, the oil is still a good moisturising pick. But come summer, I’ll pack it away for a few months. Oils high in linoleic acid are comedogenic. It didn’t make me breakout so far, but it’s not something I’d turn to when my skin tends to go into sebum overdrive, know what I mean? Better safe than sorry, ladies.

Related: What To Do When Your Skincare Products Start To Pill Or Ball Up

drunk elephant virgin marula luxury facial oil

What I Like About Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil

  • Fairly lightweight texture for an oil
  • Moisturises skin and makes it softer and smoother
  • Gives skin a lovely glow
  • Helps prevent wrinkles
  • Fragrance-free
  • Elegant and practical packaging

What I DON’T Like About Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil

  • Texture is still oily and takes a couple of minutes to absorb
  • May aggravate acne in oily skin

Who Should Use This?

This oil is best suitable for dry skin and sensitive skin.

Does Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil Live Up To Its Claims?

Straight from the “pip” of the marula fruit, our Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil is untouched by any chemical or fragrance, natural or synthetic and remains in its purest form. True. It contains only 100% unrefined Marula oil.
Like rehab for your skin, this wonder-working, luxury facial oil, high in critical antioxidants tocopherol (vitamin E), tochotrienol, antioxidant polyphenols, and rich in omegas 6 and 9, helps to moisturize, rejuvenate and nourish skin while restoring a youthful glow. True. Anything that moisturises skin plumps it up and makes it glow. All things that make it look younger.
Look for a noticeable reduction in the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, redness and blotchiness, with a marked improvement in skin’s elastic feel. Mostly true. Its moisturising properties plump up skin, so that fine lines and wrinkles look temporary smaller.
The protective barrier it creates protects it from environmental aggressors. Less irritation = less redness.
But it can’t do much for elasticity.

Price & Availability

$38.00-$68.00/£35.00-£63.00 at Boots, Cult Beauty, Sephora, SpaceNK and Ulta

The Verdict: Should You Buy It?

It’s not a need. But if you have dry skin and prefer oils to moisturisers, it’s a good option to consider.

Dupes & Alternatives

  • FaceTheory Organic Marula Oil Cold-Pressed (£19.00): This oil has marula oil to moisturise skin and plump up wrinkles and antioxidant Vitamin E to make it last longer. Available at FaceTheory.
  • The Ordinary 100% Cold-Pressed Virgin Marula Oil (£10.80): A cheap dupe that deeply moisturises skin and plumps up wrinkles without breaking the bank. Available at Beauty Bay, Cult Beauty, Sephora, The Ordinary and Ulta.


100% Unrefined Sclerocraya Birrea (Marula) Kernel Oil.