Pursuing natural health & thinking beyond the superficial. Deconstructing Culture.

Posts tagged ‘Skincare’

Gallery

VWC Ultimate Hair Repair Serum – An Excuse to Sniff Me?

VWC Ultimate Hair Repair Serum Organic Argan Oil Prickly Pear Seed Sesame Oil, Coconut Oil, Corn, Olive, Aloe Vera Orange Blossom Essential Valerie Widmann Cosmetics Natural Vegan

I consider my hair to be at least a sentient semi-autonomous-part of my body and though I usually trust it, it can be difficult keeping it from caressing people it likes and stopping it strangling those it doesn’t, so I wouldn’t want to hear what it may sometimes say behind my back. We have a standing agreement; it has almost free reign, looks cool no matter how messy it is, almost looks after itself and I home-colour my roots maybe three times a year, go easy on the hair dryer and have stopped my Mum experimenting on it to see if a style would look good on Her via proxy.

That’s why I wouldn’t normally try and then review a hair serum since there are very few products I would use on it so I hope that speaks volumes because I only tried this due to the ingredients and am very impressed with Valerie Widmann’s Cosmetics (VWC) Ultimate Hair Repair Serum.

It’s an oil blend and the oils used in my opinion give it that va va voom.

To my mind this is a sleek product in a strong, clear, tall glass 55ml/1.85 fluid ounce bottle with a plastic pump dispenser that actually works since the inner tube goes to the very bottom and unlike many bottles actually has the description, ingredients and directions on a label as well as the branding. It comes in a matching box which is handy since the glass isn’t dark and doesn’t slow down oil degradation.

The recommended method or as I call it ‘method 1’: A Serum To Wash Out

‘Instructions for use: Massage oil into scalp and leave for circa 20 minutes to 1 hour. Then wash hair as normal.’

As a wash-out oil treatment it works like all good oils do in my experience aka it depends on your hair type and scalp sensitivity. If you have dry to average scalp/hair you’ll probably notice more of a difference i.e. softer skin and the oil lightly coating the hair as it rinses through which should stay in place unless you then shampoo/condition and/or towel dry so much that it mostly comes off on the fabric.

My hair isn’t dry so doesn’t absorb oil that much, but it does hold on to it well without feeling greasy – so basically this blend with this method doesn’t suit my needs so much because I already use oils. That means I didn’t really notice a difference in using this except a bit of sting on the areas I’d previously scratched (not a problem for me, that’s the kind of thing that happens on raw skin depending on the oil and it subsided) and I have to wash and wait for my hair to dry before I can use this which I’m not inclined towards.

Method 2: A Leave-In Hair Conditioner/Moisturizer

Overall I preferred it left in, there’s nothing obvious in the ingredients which necessitates it being washed out as far as I’m concerned, it’s just an oil so I’m ok with that but for those whose hair gets unmanageably greasy quickly (though bear in mind the more frequently you wash hair the quicker it’ll get greasy/used to doing so) it’d probably be easier to wash out as instructed.

Finding a good leave-in conditioner is akin to finding a good pair of shoes and. That. Is. Hard. I rarely find shoes that are comfortable and I can walk long distance in and I rarely find a leave-in conditioner my hair will accept whilst still looking cool enough to wear sunglasses (since I don’t like them on my nose). I’ve tried lotions, balms and oils and been unhappy with most of them – not this one. It covers, softens, smoothens, moisturizes and does it straight away, it also absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave a noticeable residue – bonus!

It can also be steamed instead of washing out. Note – this doesn’t involve heating the oil beforehand. I put the cold oil on both my scalp and hair then steam it in and when it dries voila soft, shiny, vibrant, bouncy hair. To steam either put your hair up in the bath/shower or even in a double helper by steaming your face under a towel hence aiding your nasal passages and skin whilst also steaming your hair. To dry, a hair dryer with cold to medium level heat will suffice, not too high or for too long though as not only is that damaging but remember hot oil cooks.

Steaming means not stripping the hair with extra washing and serves me better for detangling than using specific ‘detangling’ ingredients in a lot of products naturally derived (different to ‘natural’) and synthetic, I find those do detangle my hair but also leave it ‘squeaky’, less elastic (so easier to snap/break) and too light/voluminous which means ‘flyaway’ for some people and necessitating some kind of holding product like a spray.

Comparisons to other oils used on the head

Doesn’t itch.
My scalp likes to breathe and tends to itch a lot when leaving any product on it so even though I use oils I tend to focus on the hair but this one doesn’t bother my skin although those with sensitive or problem skin should always do a patch test.

A little goes a very long way.
It takes 2 squirts to cover my scalp and a further 2 for all over my hair – to me that’s not much as it would usually take 2-3 times as much, and I find it spreads very well even through thick, coarse/wiry aka curly hair.

Detangling – knots what knots? Bedhead? No problem.
The simplest, quickest detangling product I’ve used period when leaving it in. I can run my fingers through my hair with barely any effort and undo knots easily. I don’t often have hair hijinks but it calms stray strands and mushed areas like music to a beast.

Good replacement for coconut oil – a Winter oil
You can go from looking salon fresh one moment to Worzel Gummidge (a scarecrow) the next if you go from a warm environment to a cold one e.g. indoors to outdoors and vice versa whilst wearing coconut oil. It’s wonderful and gotten very popular but not very practical in the Winter; olive oil, shea, cocoa butter are also wonderfully nutritious but not for people who can’t handle the weight. This is a lighter, versatile alternative.

Method 3: Scent

I’m not a perfume wearer since you never really know what’s in them except alcohol and the notes (there are some attractive make-your-own kits though!) I’ve only ever bought two perfumes and that’s not for lack of trying. I once went through a bunch of those sample sticks to the counter assistant’s frustration only to buy the first one I chose and knew I liked and had always liked but wanted to see if anything better had come along since. Both of those perfumes were purloined by someone who wouldn’t buy them for himself. Cha. I do however like oils for scent and find them much more sensuous.

So it nourishes and in my opinion smells gorgeous! For many people this could be the first and potentially most important factor because it’s a strong scent; sweet, rich and reinvigorating (and I’m glad it doesn’t have added perfume, even a natural one) I’d wear this for the scent alone! Well… I might reconsider now that I write it down, I’ve been told that I smell really sweet – something hormonal on my part perhaps or just something pervs think up for a line. Adding more sweetness might increase those who sniff you at bus stops or stand close to you on the tube in those ridiculously rare moments when it’s not ‘rush hour’ and there’s actually space to move. Then again it might make you sickly sweet, hmm… So potentially offputting for those who find a little too much oil to be pungent or dislike of ‘Oriental’ type fragrances.

Method 4: Face/Body Oil

This is probably the fastest way to use this product and yet it’s my favourite – my hair doesn’t need much of it, but the rest of me does!

It’s light, absorbent, refreshing, moisturizing and healthy – it’s made my face look less blotchy from all the sleeping-under-the-blanket weather issue, removing the blemishes from a recent foray into food with White sugar, soothing my nose (and surrounding skin from) and nasal passages from a cold and has been helping with the burn mark on my left hand. An all rounder.

Interestingly enough I can feel the resistance when using it on drier body parts like my hands, it doesn’t spread as easily or the skin feels abit rough/’sticky’ until it sinks in but elsewhere it’s smooth like other oils.

Ingredients and General Properties

Organic Argan Oil, Sesame Oil, Coconut Oil, Corn Oil, Olive Oil, Aloe Vera Oil, Organic Prickly Pear Seed Oil, Orange Blossom Essential Oil, natural preservative, Vitamin E.

Note – only the argan and prickly pear seed oils are organic, ‘organic’ means being certified and hopefully adhering to rules and guidelines from certain organizations. That doesn’t necessarily mean others don’t meet those/similar standards or are low quality just that the manufacturer couldn’t, wouldn’t or haven’t yet gotten organic status. (That doesn’t include extraction and refining if refined.) Then there’s genetically modified (GM or nowadays GMO) crops, one of the reasons for many turning to companies like this and I’m highlighting this point because there is controversy over GM corn (and soy and many tend to lump GM and non-GM versions together in the argument). That can make it confusing with ingredients that either aren’t labelled ‘organic’ or ‘GM’ (if the ingredients are labelled at all) or aren’t one or the other.

Argan & Prickly Pear Seed – Very high in essential unsaturated fatty acids including omega 6 & 9, also in Vitamin E. The former has Vitamins A & F and the latter Vitamin K. They are commonly used for antioxidant activity, regeneration/healing, dry/mature skin and dry/damaged hair.

Sesame – Sometimes called the ‘Queen of oils’ and has a multitude of health uses – edible, medicinal and cosmetic. There are far too many properties to list but they range from antibacterial to protecting against radiation-induced DNA damage.

Coconut – High in essential unsaturated and saturated fatty acids including medium chain triglycerides, high in Vitamin E, has many uses including being a natural sunscreen.

Corn (Maize oil) – Depending on how you look at it is either a filler or additional help to the others. It’s med-high in Omega 6 and possibly Omega 3 but the ratio is said by some to be unhealthy. For cosmetic purposes noted for Vitamin E but has others. Susceptible to heat damage.

Olive – Known as one of the healthiest fats and one of the most studied – a multifarious edible, medicinal/preventative, cosmetic oil full of essential fatty acids and polyphenols. Everything from an anti-inflammatory to pain relief.

Aloe Vera – Not usually thought of in oil form, has all the usual qualities but concentrated. Soothing, said to prevent hair loss by improving blood circulation in the scalp, prevents/treats dandruff & itching, moisturizes skin & retains the moisture.

Orange Blossom (Neroli oil – not the same as Orange Blossom ‘absolute’) – an interesting and pricey essential oil that has many medicinal uses, generally thought of as mentally revitalizing yet physically soothing, hormone balancing and resistant to sun damage hence holds its properties well. Also known for its strong and sweet flowery scent.

Valerie Widmann Cosmetics

This item was provided by VWCosmetics in exchange for a fair opinion and company mention. It’s available to buy for €28.95/£22.71 at:

http://www.vwcosmetics.com/products/organic-prickly-pear-seed-oil-products/hair-repair-serum.html

‘It does not contain parabens, alcohol, synthetics, sulfates, petroleum, GMOs, animal by-products, artificial colours, silicones (no dimethicone!) and fragrances… Added to this is an exotic blend of oils which repairs and restores the shine in your hair. It nourishes, conditions, treats and repairs dry, colour treated, heat damaged hair leaving you with a silky, shiny, luxurious finish.’

VWCosmetics is a German company that imports from fair-trade cooperatives for their organic, cold pressed argan and prickly pear seed oils and aspires to a higher quality, unique selection of products.

Conclusion

This works both as a boost and maintenance product. For those wary of oils due to having oily skin remember there are oils actually used (including some of the above) to balance that for many reasons such as astringent properties.

I siphoned some oil into a smaller bottle and found that 20 squirts equated to 8ml so if you used it for a hair&scalp treatment once a week at 4 squirts a round that’d be upto 9 months of use. However if you’re using more and in various ways it’d decrease much faster, I’ve been using it for 10 days and down to 2/3 but then I was experimenting… Although I like it in most of the ways I’ve tried it so I can see it lasting approximately a month. But hey, it’s worth it.

Gallery

Dr Organic Rose Otto Lotion – Not all Roses but Does the Business

Advantages – Moisturizes, Hydrates, Refreshes, Smoothens, Softens, Firms, Tones, Anti-Aging, Absorbent.

Disadvantages – Not so much rose? A lot of ingredients for the formulation of the lotion as well as the nutrients.

Dr Organic dr.organic Rose Otto Damascena Body Face Lotion Moisturizer Moisturiser Bioactiv Bioactive Anti-AgingWHY I BOUGHT THIS – and Who it Might Be Helpful For

I recently came down with an inflammatory illness that lasted 2.5 months and was pretty much bedridden for approx 1month of that. It started with joint swelling and then all over in some places. Some of the heaviest swelling was on my jaw which ended up ‘locked’ and so I liquid fasted for that month. I just wasn’t in the mood to think about let alone keep up with a skincare routine but I was still worried about the effects prolonged stretching and contracting would have on my skin – stretching from the swelling, contracting from the major weight loss and then subsequently weight gain after being able to eat again. Then there were the effects of alternating hot and cold e.g. hot water bottles and ice. I didn’t want stretch marks, loose or extra dry skin. I needed my skin to stay supple yet firm and be able to manage transitioning for a long time especially in the recovery period when joints were not back in place, and then hopefully go back to its original texture.

Other factors I took into consideration were my age, soothing properties for swelling and the weather. Being early 30’s in addition to the illness meant I wanted something ‘extra’ in comparison to what I usually go for, so I decided on something specifically anti-aging. The weather being mild meant that I didn’t have to worry about the product being too heavy or light but I did intend to use lots of it hence I didn’t want taking too long to absorb yet I did want to feel the benefit of instant hydration as well rather than moisturizing without thirst quenching. Asking a lot eh?

Thankfully I came across Dr Organic Rose Otto Lotion at just the right time and it falls into the ‘affordable’ price range for organic beauty/health products.

COMPANY INFO

Dr Organic or ‘dr.organic’ is an extensive and attractive skincare brand primarily available at the ever wonderful Holland & Barrett, purveyors of more ethically friendly food and health items (e.g. vitamins and cosmetics) for those with special diets, health needs and just a general interest in improving/maintaining health with a purer quality of product. The ‘Dr’ is a British brand with an international reach in the ingredients they source (though I’m not clued up about their ethical policies for sourcing, fair trade, transporting etc), are enrolled in a number of organic standard certifications and have a plethora of awards.

http://www.drorganic.co.uk/about.asp

”’Our Promise…”’

Organic ingredients – We strive to use organically grown ingredients. Where an organic ingredient cannot be used we will always source sustainable natural alternatives
Bioactive ingredients
Natural ingredients
No harsh chemicals
No parabens, sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS), perfumes or artificial fragrances.
All our products are suitable for vegetarians.
No animal testing
No mineral oils – Petro-chemicals such as paraffin and petroleum are avoided, plant based oils and extracts are used.
No GM ingredients
Preservatives – Where necessary preservatives are used to guarantee product safety and shelf life. Only the highest grade broad spectrum naturally derived preservatives are used.

What does bioactive mean?

I posted some Dr Organic lotion reviews on my blog a while back HERE and have found them to be amongst some of the most popular search items in my reader statistics and the term ‘bioactive’ comes up a fair bit too.

They describe themselves as providers or ‘bioactive skincare’; bioactive basically means a substance that can be used to affect or promote a response from a living organism, and/or can extracted from a living organism. To me it sounds like a very general slogan which can be applied to any number of cosmetics and non-cosmetics alike.

I couldn’t find an exact definition on their website. However they do state that they are committed to creating products that are ’ functional by design and formulated to capture the key active properties within the ingredients used’ To me that implies that Dr Organic are interested in conveying the beneficial properties of the items used without clashing or heightening/playing down some characteristics over others and attempting to bring out the best in most if not all them. That’s no easy task and a big claim and since they can’t please/cater to everybody at the same time with a product I don’t doubt that some are hit and miss for different people. But in conjunction with the ingredient lists I’ve seen on products in general in the past I respect that ethos/aim because more often than not I come across products that use key words to promote products and then you find that the corresponding ingredient(s) is only included in a very minor percentage or as a topnote. Such disappointing advertising is also often accompanied by numerous filler ingredients both natural and synthetic but mostly synthetic and possibly some other ‘nasties’ that can cause skin irritation as well as other speculated undesirable side effects. The ingredient lists I’ve seen on Dr Organic lotions are not top notch and have more ingredients then I would ideally like for aesthetics rather than nourishing properties but they’re hardly synthetic or as unhealthy as a whole than the majority of highstreet buys e.g. I’ve seen formaldehyde in some hair conditioners. In comparison to those Dr Organic is quite mild so worth checking out for sensitive skin types but for those with grain intolerances bear in mind the Xanthan Gum and Sodium Phytate in the ingredients.

Ranges

The ranges available are Aloe Vera, Pomegranate, Tea Tree, Vitamin E, Lavender, Manuka Honey, Olive Oil, Royal Jelly, Rose Otto, Coconut Oil, Moroccan Argan Oil and Dead Sea Mineral. All of the ranges are vegetarian friendly and most vegan friendly; the lotion in this review is vegan friendly and 200ml in size.

Each range has a variety of products available including the usual Lip Balms, Body Butters, Hand & Nail Creams, Face Masks, Face Scrubs, Soaps, Body Scrubs, Body Washes, Face Washes, Shampoos, and Conditioners etc. Some more interesting items are toothpastes, deodorants and items focusing on the foot care.

PROPERTIES

This product has the Rose Otto signature so I would have thought Rose Oil, Extract and perhaps Rosehip would be the main ingredients. There is no Rosehip and the Rose Oil and Extract are quite far down in the list. I’m not a chemist so I can only give Dr Organic the benefit of the doubt due to their ambition for ‘bioactive’ skincare and rely on Rose being one of if not the main active component in this lotion and as such will give a few properties here.

It’s one of those multi-faceted oils being known for antidepressant, antiphlogistic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, antiviral, aphrodisiac, astringent, bactericidal, cholagogue, cicatrisant, depurative, emenagogue, haemostatic, hepatic, laxative, nervine, stomachic and uterine properties. Generally rose oil can be used to aid stress/anxiety relief as it is soothing and uplifting and in cosmetic skincare has maintained popularity in older women due to its fatty acids and vitamin content that nourish, moisturize, fill out the skin as well as stimulating skin cell renewal which is helpful for new skin but also can potentially help with scars and pigmentation.

Note that Geranium Oil and Geraniol are in this mixture. The Geranium is before the Rose ingredients; Geranium is often used as a substitute and/or filler for Rose in Rose products as it is cheaper and the Geraniol at the end of the ingredient list is harder to speculate on as it can come from Roses, Geraniums or a number of other plants.

Consistency

The lotion was a thick, pure White cream which felt very soft and silky smooth and I really mean silky – it felt slippery to the touch though not thin at all and yet rich at the same time. To me it didn’t smell very rose like but there’s a heck of a lot of oils in it so in that sense I wasn’t surprised but was surprised and amused that the overall blended smell reminded me of lychee/litchi fruit with an after-smell/hint of rose. I love litchis so found it pleasant but obviously something to think about for those who don’t like sweet, fruity scents.

Though a thick lotion it wasn’t greasy to the touch and absorbed quickly as well giving instant hydration in a reinvigorating and soothing way. It made both an effective day and night cream, I didn’t try it under make up but I think a small amount could work and for touch ups to awaken tired eyes and on/around the mouth after eating.

Directions

‘Apply liberally to the skin. Repeat as often as required. Suitable for use all over the body. Avoid contact with eyes. Due to the ingredients natural origin, colour and consistency may vary from batch to batch. This does not affect the quality of the product.’

From my experience a little of this goes a long way as it spreads really easily, perhaps an effect of its silky consistency. I also found it very gentle and soothing on both the sensitive swollen (both hard and soft swollen) areas and areas that are generally sensitive due to thinner skin such as around the eyes. A 200ml bottle would usually last me approx 2 months but since I was slathering it on it lasted half the time.

HOW WELL IT WORKS

Taking into account the properties described above the lotion did everything I’d hoped for; it refreshed, soothed, moisturized, hydrated, toned and prevented the rapid aging I’d worried about – the swelling underneath it would go down a little too when I’d first apply it which was helpful. It softened the harder areas directly over joints like elbows and knees and really softening and filling out the dry skin on my hands. It didn’t make my skin radiant or glowing with youth as some oils I’ve have but I really just wanted it as a preventative and for damage control and in that sense it got top marks. On areas of loose/loosening skin it shrunk/toned and on the ‘regular’ skin it maintained and thirst quenched like a thicker body butter would do.

For those with stretch marks and scars I wouldn’t say this decreases the visibility of them but it should help prevent them spreading or new ones.

Regardless of my age and health I’ve always had spot prone skin, yet I was using a lot of this and constantly but amazingly my skin didn’t breakout so I found it really breathable and non-irritating.

In regards to layering I did try it with other lotions and oils and at no point did I find it created any bad smells or negative affect on my skin, all in all it was like a nursemaid throughout. I would think that it would layer ok with fruity, sweet fragrances should you choose to wear it alongside a scent but of course let it sink in fully first.

In terms of lasting ability I’m pretty confident in thinking that had I not been ill it would have not only been a great assistance during that time but would have improved the quality of my skin in general and with further use the anti-aging properties would probably have been more noticeable. As it was, it helped keep my skin the way it was before I got ill.

INGREDIENTS – Know What You Put in Your Body and Why

Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Aqua, Dicaprylyl Ether, Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate, Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Isocetyl Palmitate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Myristyl Myristate, Olea Europaea (Olive) Oil Unsaponifiables, Theobroma Cacao Seed Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii Butter, Glyceryl Caprylate, Tocopherol/Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil, Glycyrrhetinic Acid, Retinyl Palmitate, Xanthan Gum, Chondrus Crispus Extract, Pelargonium Graveolens (geranium) Oil, Eugenia Caryophyllata (clove) Flower Oil, Rosa Damascena (rose) Flower Oil, Parfum (Natural and food grade), Rosa Damascena Flower Extract, Passiflora Incarnata Extract, Tilia Europaea Flower Extract, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Chamomilla Recutita Flower Extract, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Phytate, Citric Acid, Ascorbic Acid, Geraniol, Linalool, Citronellol, Eugenol.

Breaking the above down abit:

The base includes Aloe Vera Juice, components of Olive Oil, Cocoa Butter, Shea Butter, Sunflower Seed Oil, Liquorice and Vitamin A,C&E.
Then Irish/Carrageen Moss (a type of Red algae), and the oils of Geranium, Clove, and Damascena Rose.
Then Damascena Rose, Passionflower, Lime flower, Calendula and Chamomile Extracts.

Quite a power house and packed with properties I could benefit from. They all share/overlap in quite a few of their properties but generally:

Aloe, Lime Flower and Chamomile all have soothing, calming and healing properties.
Irish Moss and Clove have anti-inflammatory properties.
Liquorice and Passionflower both have pain relief properties.
Calendula is revitalizing plant, a wake-up call, giving immediate energy.

The Vitamins are all antioxidants preventing degenerative oxidative stress on cells, and are all immune system maintainers/boosters. They have individual properties but in general for skincare Vitamin A promotes and maintains skin tissue quality and can help with acne, E is a soluble fat helping to keep the skin plump/youthful C prevents discolouration of skin.

Compromises

Bear in mind the ingredients list isn’t the most natural you can come across but I was compromising due to lack of choice at the time, choosing a lotion for thirst quenching hydration combined with soothing plus texture convenience over the heavier/thicker/messier/longer to absorb body butters and oils, and price. At this level it was unlikely I was going to find a pure formula with less and completely ethical, natural bonding and liquefying agents and preservatives – things that are necessary to making and keeping solids and oils in blended lotion/cream form. Plus it’s cheaper than buying all the ingredients and making my own.

In regards to the less recognizable ingredients in the base;

Emollients/Emulsifiers:

Dicaprylyl Ether – derived from coconut or palm kernel oil, skin conditioning ingredient promoting quick absorption.

Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate – an emulsifier, sometimes emollient, provides water resistance (prevents separation of ingredients) and maintains the cream consistency when combined with stearate – stearate can be an irritant, though considered low hazard in this mixture.

Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride – again from coconut or palm oil, this time specifically the Caprylic/Capric fatty acids of the oil, making it lighter than a carrier oil, more compatible with emulsifiers and silky. Not the same as ‘fractionated oil’ which is from distillation combining all the fatty acids.

Isocetyl Palmitate – A combination of Isocetyl Alochol and Palmitic Acid. A viscosity increasing agent, water resistant – again to help maintain the consistency of the cream whilst including the most common fatty acid found in plants and animals, in non-animal cosmetics most likely to be from palm oil. (Palmitic is often an added to cosmetics and food to add texture.)

Myristyl Myristate – Mix of myristyl alcohol and myristic acid, vegetable derived, primarily used for making cosmetics White and holding them together particularly where there’s lots of oils/butters, and thickens the product.

Glyceryl Caprylate – natural thickener and emollient produced from vegetable oil and fatty acids from coconut or palm oil, it also maintains the ‘wet’ texture of the cream.

Preservatives:

Sodium Benzoate – also known as E-Number E211. It’s a salt derived from benzoic acid found in some fruits and spice. It’s commonly used in food, perfumes, medicine and cosmetics. It’s a masking agent, anti-corrosive, prevents bacteria and fungus but is controversial in the natural health sphere. The original benzoic acid is not the issue but the sodium benzoate can interact with Ascorbic Acid (part of Vitamin C) to make the known carcinogen Benzene. Light, heat and shelf life can affect the rate at which Benzene is created.

Potassium Sorbate – A salt derived from Sorbic Acid, a common preservative and ingredient often found in fragrances too. It’s naturally occurring and aids against fungi, mold and yeast though not anti-bacterial. A paraben alternative with shorter shelf life and one that needs to be used with other preservatives. Considered a mild preservative and safe long term though can cause skin irritation for some and has lesser carcinogenic concern regarding neurotoxicity and endocrine disruption.

Other:

Sodium Phytate – A salt from of Phytic Acid which is found in the seeds of cereal grains and is derived commercially from corn. Sodium Phytate is a chelating agent usually used in oral care for detoxifying metal agents or treating hard water…

More natural, streamlined and presumably higher priced lotion/semi-liquid/easily absorbed products (as long they’re high quality) should be expected to perhaps harden a bit in cold weather or separate/go a bit runny in hot conditions or after some time. Either is easily remedied though by warming the product a bit or shaking/mixing it. Whereas products like this lotion tend to last longer due to the less desirable ingredients and the amount of them but even many of the ‘best’/priciest brand products will have a blend of synthetic and natural preservatives in which some of the natural ingredients will likely not be labeled or thought of/used as preservatives but do have the properties. Whenever water/aqua is a base ingredient alcohol is often used and preservatives are needed to retain quality and prevent contamination unfortunately. Pure oil or shea/cocoa butter bases don’t need that so much if at all and have longer shelf lives (unless compared to products with parabens in them), they’re not immune to contamination but as long as they’re kept safely and hands are washed before use it’s not such a worry.

Really pure, minimal ingredient products are usually custom made in small batches with a short shelf life and sometimes need to be refrigerated. It’s the age old paying more for less/pure formulations and paying less for more cheap, filler ingredients. Particularly ingredients from palm oil that anybody interested in ethical products will know is a massive environmental issue, not the tree or oil itself by the methods of cultivating, deforestation/loss of habitat and fertile land, use of workers and pollution. Dr Organic state on their website that whenever they can’t source an organic ingredient they use a sustainable natural alternative instead.

That’s the toss up in using lotions over or along with high quality body butters and oils.

Price

£7.39 currently at Holland & Barrett, I think that’s a bit more then when I bought it but remember that H&B do frequent buy-one-get-one-half-price and buy-one-get-one-for-a-penny sales.

THE PACKAGING – Mainly a Disadvantage

I find their packaging to be quite heavy/bulky and for some products less could be more making it easier on you and recycling. The lotions come in the form of squeezy containers, very thick plastic which is very secure against damage and spillage but a pain once you’ve used half of it and have to put more effort into getting the product out. When I get to the point where squeezing the bottle yields nothing and it feels much lighter in weight telling me it’s ready for the bin it’s actually concealing a lot more. Be prepared with a strong pair of scissors as the lid will just not come off, not even with consistent effort lol so I always have to cut off the top half to reveal at least 1 week’s worth of lotion throughout the innards that would be an absolute waste to unconsciously throw away. Note – remember to cover the chopped bottle halves or place them in a container to prevent the lotion drying up and going hard before you can finish it.

CONCLUSION

I like that the first ingredient is aloe vera and not water; I have no problem with water of course but in this day and age it’s hard to know where it’s coming from, what’s in it and how/if it’s been filtered even in organic products. The additional use of coca butter, shea butter and sunflower oil (not sure about the olive oil unsaponifiables which I relate to soap making rather than lotion) for the base help make these lotions nourishing and moisturizing. This particular lotion made a nice barrier and boost for the skin, successfully living up to its ‘anti-aging’ tag in my opinion with complimentary oils and extracts that soothed, calmed, restored, firmed as well as softened.

It was very easy to use, lasted long enough and thankfully in my experience there’s usually a Holland & Barrett on most highstreets but they also have a website making them a helpful and convenient alternative to hunting down appropriate lifestyle products on foot or online especially if looking for organic or plant based products.

I’d rate this 3.5/5 or 7/10 because it is an above average product but the amount of emollients/emulsifiers, preservatives and Sodium Phytate used are offputting plus and I would have preferred Guar Gum over Xanthan. It is still high quality, does what it says it should and large size product for the price although I really don’t need an item to be White in colour or silky. The thickeners I understand but to an extent since I don’t mind thinner lotions though with all the oils and butters in it that shouldn’t be a problem. It seems a case of culmination, adding one ingredient to solve an issue only to need more because of it like the parable of the ‘Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly’.

Gallery

Dr Organic – Natural and Organic Skincare Products on the UK Highstreet

Please note – The Moroccan Argan lotion is no longer vegan, it now has beeswax (cera alba) in it.

Introduction

Dr Organic or ‘dr.organic’ is an extensive and attractive skincare brand primarily available at the ever wonderful Holland & Barrett, purveyors of more ethically friendly food and health items (e.g. vitamins and cosmetics) for those with special diets, health needs and just a general interest in improving/maintaining health with a purer quality of product. The ‘Dr’ is a British brand with an international reach in the ingredients they source (though I’m not clued up about their ethical policies for sourcing, fair trade, transporting etc), are enrolled in a number of organic standard certifications and have a plethora of awards.

They describe themselves as providers or ‘bioactive skincare’; bioactive basically means a substance that can be used to affect or promote a response from a living organism, and/or can extracted from a living organism. To me it sounds like a very general slogan which can be applied to any number of cosmetics and non-cosmetics alike however in conjunction with the ingredients lists I’ve seen it implies to me that Dr Organic are interested in conveying the beneficial properties of the items used without clashing or heightening/playing down some characteristics over others. I respect that because more often than not I come across products that use key words to promote products and then you find that the corresponding ingredient(s) is only included in a very minor percentage or as a topnote. Such disappointing advertising is also often accompanied by numerous filler ingredients both natural and synthetic but mostly synthetic and possibly some other ‘nasties’ that can cause skin irritation as well as other speculated undesirable side effects. That said the ingredients lists that I’ve noted are also quite mild in general so some ranges would definitely be worth checking out for sensitive skin.

http://www.drorganic.co.uk/about.asp

Our Promise…
Organic ingredients
We strive to use organically grown ingredients. Where an organic ingredient cannot be used we will always source sustainable natural alternatives
Bioactive ingredients
We use certified bioactive extracts to ensure each product is truly functional by nature.
Natural ingredients
Natural ingredients are used in all formulations.
No harsh chemicals
We do not use ingredients often criticised for their side effects. We never use parabens, sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS), perfumes or artificial fragrances.
No animal ingredients
All our products are suitable for vegetarians. In some products we used by-products from animals, most of which revolve around honey, these include; honey, royal jelly, propolis and bees wax.
No animal testing
Our products are always tested on human volunteers to ensure they are completely safe and effective. No animal tests are ever performed on finished products or raw materials.
No mineral oils
Petro-chemicals such as paraffin and petroleum are avoided, plant based oils and extracts are used.
No GM ingredients
Genetically modified or genetically engineered organisms are avoided to ensure all formulations are as natural as possible.
Preservatives
Where necessary preservatives are used to guarantee product safety and shelf life. Only the highest grade broad spectrum naturally derived preservatives are used.

The ranges available are Aloe Vera, Pomegranate, Tea Tree, Vitamin E, Lavender, Manuka Honey, Olive Oil, Royal Jelly, Rose Otto, Coconut Oil, Moroccan Argan Oil and Dead Sea Mineral. All of the ranges are vegetarian friendly and most vegan friendly; the lotions in this review are vegan friendly and 200ml in size.

Each range has a variety of products available including the usual Lip Balms, Body Butters, Hand & Nail Creams, Face Masks, Face Scrubs, Soaps, Body Scrubs, Body Washes, Face Washes, Shampoos, and Conditioners etc. Some more interesting items are toothpastes, deodorants and items focusing on the foot care.

The directions on the four reviewed are as follows: ‘Apply liberally to the skin. Repeat as often as required. Suitable for use all over the body. Avoid contact with eyes. Due to the ingredients natural origin, colour and consistency may vary from batch to batch. This does not affect the quality of the product.’

Virgin Olive Oil

Olive Oil Lotion Dr Organic

Properties

Aptly described as ‘liquid Gold’ olive oil has extensively been used for health and skin care throughout the ages. It’s a thick, protective, light to dark Gold colour with a subtle aromatic smell and usually fulsome flavours (as should be expected from such piquant fruit 🙂 and even better for you when left to mature). It’s suitable for eating as dressing or cooked and unrefined varieties will solidify in less than room temperature. Along with its nutritional benefits it is known for protecting skin from signs of aging/weather beating and turning hair into a beautiful, soft, shiny mane. It is suitable for everyday use as well as top ups and deep moisturizing treatments.

Cold pressed olive oil is rich in Oleic Acid (omega-9 fatty acid) which is a powerful antioxidant and has the ability to sink in past the epidermis (outer layer of skin) to give a long lasting moisturizing and nourishing affect whilst improving the overall condition of the skin in general promoting a more youthful looking and supple texture.

Consistency

I’ve used 3 bottles of this and have found the look and feel to be consistent; the lotion is a thick White-Ivory cream which feels smooth and rich and has a subtle olive smell. It is somewhat greasy to the touch and takes a bit of time and massaging to sink in fully. It’s not heavy but does make an effective night cream and when used in a pea sized quantity it is fine for day wear underneath make up.

How Well It Works – Instant Tan?

As with olive oil in general I find that it makes my skin appear darker and continues to do so until I stop using it and switch to something else. I already have a medium skin tone and on top of that I tan easily even in the Winter sun so I find that this does make me look olive Brown. That could be advantageous to those wanting to look darker or top up their tans but as I don’t currently have two foundations for my skin when tanned and untanned I prefer to use this for my hands and body rather than neck and face.

In regards to moisturizing I find this gently and slowly ‘healing’/soothing in that it doesn’t hydrate in an instant and dramatic way but softens, tones and nourishes my skin in a gradual, long lasting way. It’s particularly good for ‘plumping’ skin so don’t be afraid to try it around the eyes and mouth :-).

As aforementioned this makes a good night cream if a sufficient amount is used but it can be worn (without makeup) either with a two pea sized amounts left to sink in or one at a time as a top up throughout the day.

Ingredients:

Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Aqua, Dicaprylyl Ether, Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate, Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Isocetyl Palmitate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Myristyl Myristate, Olea Europaea (Olive) Oil Unsaponifiables, Theobroma Cacao Seed Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii Butter, Olea Europaea Fruit Oil, Glyceryl Caprylate, Tocopherol/Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil, Glycyrrhetinic Acid, Retinyl Palmitate, Xanthan Gum, Chondrus Crispus Extract, Ribes Nigrum, Parfum, Olea Europaea Leaf Extract, Citrus Medical Limonum Peel Extract, Vitis Vinifera Leaf Extract, Thymus Vulgaris Leaf Extract, Foeniculum Vulgare Seed Extract, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Phytate, Citric Acid, Ascorbic Acid, Amyl Cinnamal, Benzyl Salicylate, Geraniol, Linalool, Hydroxycitronellal.

Price

£6.19 at Holland & Barrett 

Pomegranate

Pomegranate Dr Organic Lotion

Properties

Thought to have originated in Iran (née Persia) pomegranates have an interesting history for both cultural, health and food use e.g. from the trapping/separating of the beautiful Persephone and Demeter to medicinal use in ancient Egypt and India. Pomegranates have a high level of vitamins and antioxidants providing anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory and anti-aging properties. It has become very popular recently as a superfruit and as such can be found in all types of skin care products from moisturizers to sun protection.

In the Dr Organic lotion it sits complimentary amongst aloe vera, cocoa butter, shea butter, olive oil, sunflower oil, and Irish moss and yet still stands out with a wow factor justifying the ‘pomegranate’ label.

Consistency

It is a very White thick cream with a silky feel and smooth texture but the first thing I noticed was the smell… Wow, it’s a very heady and invigorating smell with a powerful affect on the senses. It may have been partly because I hadn’t had any fresh fruit in many weeks at the time but the exotic and very fruity scent really elicited the satisfied sensation of having eaten fruit (akin to how the smell of pure cocoa butter can satisfy chocolate cravings). That said every subsequent time I used it the fragrance was still strong and revitalizing.

How Well It Works

The pomegranate lotion works well for day wear as it absorbs quickly and easily which is helpful for makeup wearers and for those who like to top up. As a night lotion it works well but would not see you through ’til morning so best to pair it a small amount of base oil.

Overall I’d say it’s not as moisturizing as the olive lotion but is super hydrating and helps to ‘wake up’ the skin. It softens the skin, makes it slightly radiant, slightly tautens the skin but doesn’t plump so I prefer to use this in warm weather.

Ingredients:

Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Aqua, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate, Glycerin, Isocetyl Palmitate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Myristyl Myristate, Olea Europaea (Olive) Oil Unsaponifiables, Punica Granatum Extract, Theobroma Cacao Seed Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii Butter, Glyceryl Caprylate, Tocopherol, Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil, Glycyrrhetinic Acid, Retinyl Palmitate, Chondrus Crispus Extract, Xanthan Gum, Aroma, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Phytate, Citric acid, Citronellol, Limonene, Geraniol, Hexyl Cinnamal, Linalool.

Price £7.19 at Holland & Barrett

Moroccan Argan

Moroccan Argan Oil Dr Organic Skin Lotion

Properties

I went into detail about Argan oil HERE and so was glad to see Dr Organic specifying their products with the locality ‘Moroccan Argan oil’ since it’s a protected and difficult process to grow and extract argan oil and the work done there is helping local humane initiatives and in particular the independence and respect of women and their place in home/society. Dr Organic was the first brand I saw doing this.

Argan oil has a long history in the Mediterranean as a wholesome and nutritious source of vitamins, antioxidants and essential fatty acids making it appealing for skin maintenance/improvement and culinary uses. Akin to the pomegranate it has made a modern impact as a cosmetic ‘wonder’ and is what I consider to be a ‘light’ oil in both colour and body yet still rich.

This particular Dr Organic lotion has an extra abundance of amazing ingredients including Kigelia fruit extract, Roselle flower extract, baobab fruit extract, orange fruit oil, clove leaf oil, Geranium oil, lemon peel Oil, Patchouli oil, cinnamon leaf oil, Rosewood oil, wild mint oil, mandarin peel oil, vanilla fruit extract and spearmint oil. Can you say powerhouse? A list like that paints a picture of the best of both worlds, exotic and local in an evocative yet comfortable dance.

Consistency

True to form/brand I found the lotion to be a thick White cream, soft and smooth in texture and this time with a less discernible smell which I would hazard to say is an acquired taste. I didn’t dislike it but I didn’t like it either. Unfortunately I found the absorbency of this lotion to be very poor, not only taking a long time but being very uneven.

How Well It Works – Instant Face Lift?

I was quite surprised at the use of citrus and strong/’refreshing’ herb oils in the ingredients list and so had uncertain yet hopeful expectations and found likewise the results to be mixed.

Personally I could not use this on my face, a sad realization after numerous fruitless attempts because even though it really tightens the skin and ‘lifts’ the forehead/eyes with a surprisingly good hold it just would not sink in evenly. I had to use less than what I would normally just to be ‘safe’ but even when it finally sunk in it would leave patches all over regardless of how evenly I tried to put it on. The patches were random as well, changing each time I tried it so I wouldn’t think that the T-Zone is a factor. Strangely it absorbed just fine elsewhere on the body.

In places other than the face and neck (where it leaves less visible but still noticeable residue) the lotion sinks in ok and softens nicely. I would say it softens similarly to the olive though not long lasting and not as invigorating as the pomegranate but still refreshing hence it was a happy medium.

Ingredients:

Aloe barbadensis leaf juice, Aqua, Theobroma cacao (Cocoa) butter, Glycerin, Coco-caprylate, Glyceryl stearate, Cetearyl alcohol, Polyglyceryl-3 dicitrate/stearate, Sodium magnesium silicate, Argania spinosa (Argan) oil, Xanthan gum, Sodium stearoyl glutamate, Kigelia Africana fruit extract, Hibiscus sabdariffa flower extract, Adansonia digitata fruit extract, Citrus aurantium dulcis, Eugenia caryophyllus (Clove) leaf oil, Pelargonium graveolens (Geranium) oil, Citrus limon peel oil, Pogostemon cablin (Patchouli) oil, Cinnamomumzeylanicum (Cinnamon) leaf oil, Aniba rosaeodora (Rosewood) oil, Mentha arvensis herb oil, Citrus nobilis (Mandarin) peel oil, Vanilla planifolia (Vanilla) fruit extract, Mentha spicata herb oil, Sodium phytate, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium dehydroacetate, Benzyl alcohol, Dehydroacetic acid, Citric acid, Limonene, Eugenol, Linalool, Citronellol, Geraniol, Citral, Benzyl benzoate.

Price £6.99 at Holland & Barrett

Vitamin E

Vitamin E Sunflower Dr Organic Skin Lotion

Properties – What is Vitamin E?

I find the use of names/terms like Vitamin A & E (ahem) to be somewhat vague as product titles and even with the rampant use of such in the cosmetics industry I still find the idea ambiguous because on first impression I’m not sure what I’m getting. That said with healthier options such as Dr Organics I first assume (before reading the ingredients list) that the ingredients have a higher level of said ‘ name’ and in their combination contain or will produce more of the said ‘name’ than the other products from the same brand. I generally know the term ‘Vitamin E’ to apply to a group of health promoting compounds rather than a single vitamin, it’s also a fat soluble nutrient and an antioxidant. That infers to me that it’s a healthy fat (obviously if consumed consciously as part of a lifestyle/diet read up on the possible effects of large quantities and remember that fats are used for many functions in the body not just affecting weight) which is easily broken down and helps prevent oxidization in the body which can lead to degenerative effects such as the ever dreaded aging but also health maladies. With a little research I’ve found that Vitamin E is linked to a healthy immune system, hair and eyes.

As a now common term in the skin care industry Dr Organic describes it ‘as a moisturiser it helps combat premature skin aging and also protects and soothes dry dehydrated and sun exposed skin. It also restores elasticity and reduces the appearance of skin imperfections by increasing hydration.’

Consistency

It is a pure White thick cream which once spread on the palms of my hands looks and feels slightly oily but ‘instantly’ absorbs, yes it’s very fast. I can use it and then type in practically no time at all without leaving grease stains or feeling sticky. This is an excellent quality for daily use and traveling.

I noticed that the Dr Organic website points out that this lotion is fragrance free and usually I see that as meaning not artificially ‘enhanced’ with fragrance/perfume and hence relying on the natural scents of the ingredients or having a mild/subdued smell. However that could apply to all of the lotions of theirs I’ve tried so I’m not sure why it’s described as fragrance free especially as it does have a smell, and a lovely one at that. It’s hard to describe other than it is pleasant and not too strong, almost like a sweet citrus smell.

How Well It Works

I find it moisturizes the facial skin very well with a nice softening both visual and felt. It does the same with the hands but in this weather it takes quite a bit or repeated use to make them visibly softer. I can tell from the way it softens and makes my hands feel smoother/silkier that if formulated as a hand cream specifically I would buy it and it would probably become a staple. As it is I would absolutely love it in warm weather where it would probably make my hands look years younger but right now it’s being hampered by the cold.

It is thick enough to be worn by itself without adding a thin coating of oil and for those wearing make up a thin layer will suffice and dries quick enough to wear foundation or powder over it without it interfering and making lines/runs, blobs or pushing up dry skin. If applied liberally it can also make do as a night cream. On the face I find it has a mildly toning and lifting effect and overall is it very refreshing/hydrating.

Ingredients:

Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Aqua, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cetearyl Alcohol, Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate, Glycerin, Isocetyl Palmitate, Myristyl Myristate, Olea Europaea (Olive) Oil Unsaponifiables, Tocopherol, Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil, Theobroma Cacao Seed Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii Butter, Glyceryl Caprylate, Glycyrrhetinic Acid, Retinyl Palmitate, Chondrus Crispus Extract, Xanthan Gum, Aroma, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Phytate, Limonene, Hydroxycitronellal, Linalool.

Price £6.29 at Holland & Barrett 

The packaging – Mainly a Disadvantage

For the packaging junkies and connoisseurs out there for whom the casing can make or break a decision, the images and overall look of Dr Organic products (in my opinion) is very professional, clear and sleek. Just the right balance of minimalist and vibrant/vivid colour as well as informative so not embarrassing to have displayed in one’s home ;-).

On the downside I find their packaging to be quite heavy/bulky and for some products less could be more making it easier on you and recycling. The lotions come in the form of squeezy containers, very thick plastic which is very secure against damage and spillage but a pain once you’ve used half of it and have to put more effort into getting the product out. I generally find that for hand/face use a bottle will last approx 2 months and 1 month with body use and when I get to the point where squeezing the bottle yields nothing and it feels much lighter in weight telling me it’s ready for the bin it’s actually concealing a lot more. Thankfully my suspicious mind aided me into checking the first bottle I bought. Be prepared with a strong pair of scissors as the lid will just not come off, not even with consistent effort lol so I always have to cut off the top half to reveal at least 1-2 week’s worth of lotion throughout the innards that would be an absolute waste to unconsciously throw away. Note – remember to cover the chopped bottle halves or place them in a container to prevent the lotion drying up and going hard before you can finish it.

Conclusion

In the last year I’ve noticed that The Dr Organic products have pretty much taken over and extended (and arguably enhanced though monopolized) the cosmetic shelves at H&B. What has dwindled in brand variety though has increased in product type; from memory H&B have not had such a wide range of skincare products before and upon speaking to staff in smaller stores I’ve learned that they had to make space for them by decreasing or removing less popular products which is of course a nuisance for those reliant on them (I now have to shop purely online for some items that were on the hitlist) but helpful as an alternative to pharmacy and department store aisles of cosmetic chemical craziness.

To be honest I started purchasing Dr Organic lotions out of necessity when I didn’t have internet access or was outside of cosmopolitan circumstances within which I could hunt down products in local shopping districts. Thankfully in my experience there is always a Holland & Barrett in a town or on a major highstreet and despite my initial reservations I resorted to buying a couple of the above lotions but was surprisingly and increasingly impressed and pleased with the results. The regular ‘buy-one-get-one-half-price’ or ‘buy-one-get-one-for-a-penny’ sales also helped in swaying where I spent my proverbial pound 😉 but overall for the size and quality the prices are very competitive anyway.

One thing I like about these lotions is that the first ingredient is aloe vera and not water; I have no problem with water of course but in this day and age it’s hard to know where it’s coming from, what’s in it and how/if it’s been filtered even in organic products. The additional use of coca butter and shea butter for the base help make these lotions thick and reliable. The ones I’ve tried all sufficiently moisturize and hydrate especially in the freezing weather, both as a barrier and boost for the skin making them a helpful and convenient highstreet alternative to hunting down appropriate lifestyle products on foot or online.

I look forward to which one I’ll try next!

Gallery

Weleda Wild Musk Rose Body Oil

Smelling the Roses

weleda_wild_rose_body_oil Review

Introduction:

I bought the full sized 100ml rose oil (£19.95) after having received a tester 10ml (£2.95) from Weleda PR. Now the price alone is usually out of my price range which goes to show just how impressed with it I was and still am. I also bought Weleda’s version rather than a cheaper version because not only had I tested it but because Weleda is known as a high quality and ethically invested company. I try to support such companies, in my own tiny way as an individual, in order to help increase their market presence but also to help keep them  in business – they only use basic natural ingredients without extras, synthetic alternatives and excessive processing and packaging yet their items are considered to be luxury items because they are not high street brands and less widely available. Then once these items are gone, they’re gone and as with any business everyone in the supply chain suffers and you might be left trying to find a replacement for an item you love with less choices then the local beauty store.

You can find more information about Weleda in general:  http://www.weleda.co.uk/scat/aboutus

Experience:

The oil comes in a dark glass bottle to help preserve it as long as possible and prevent sun damage and as oils have a long lifespan it’s better if they can retain their strength over the period until you finish them.

The first things I noticed was that the oil itself has quite a strong Yellow colour and the smell, wow the smell. The first time I opened the bottle and got a waft of the scent I thought ‘beautiful’ and then when I put it on the palms of my hands to put on my face and it warmed with the temperature, only then did I realize fully how beautiful the aroma was. It is enchanting and I can see why rose oils have been used since ancient times to attract one’s love interest. It really is like walking into a rose garden every time I use it – something to bear in mind for romantic occasions and use on pulse points unless you or the partner dislikes strong fragrances.

The oil is fairly absorbent and doesn’t take too long to sink in with massaging so I am able to use it during the day (hands, face and neck) as well as overnight. I noticed that not only was my skin very soft, it was also smooth and more taut. There were a few nights during the testing period where I was too tired to moisturise before bed and where I didn’t sleep in good positions i.e. I ended up sleeping on my face but the following mornings I noticed that the tautness remained from the day use of the rose oil, all the way through the night and to the next morning. My skin would be drier than when I’d first applied it but as soon as I got up it went straight back into place rather than leaving sleep lines. That said, the oil doesn’t make my skin appear more ‘youthful’ i.e. fuller and radiant but the skin is left in better condition which in itself can take years off your appearance.

Tip:

I usually like to use more than one oil, either separately in a day/night or blended but when I use this oil I like to use it by itself and without using other oils in the same time period. I do that because I like to get the maximum effect over a small period of time (up to one week) before going back and rotating oils or using combinations based on what I need/feel at the time. When I say maximum effect I mean that the skin absorbs and gives out the fragrance in a ‘natural’ way i.e. you exude the scent without having to use as much oil. For people wanting to try this simply spread a thin layer of the oil over the desired body area (if not the whole body) and let it absorb. This can be done day or night but it’s usually best after you’ve washed and if you are warm – the recently moist skin will still have open pores so the oil will sink in faster and deeper leaving less residue on clothes or other surfaces and the body temperature will help both to absorb and release the fragrance. Try this twice daily for the first 2-3 days and then once a day up until you finish your experiment. Unless you sweat a lot or work in conditions which mean you have to wash more frequently than average you should find that you don’t have to wear perfumes or deodorants as much if at all, which have on average up 200-300 ingredients but are simply labelled as ‘fragrance’ or ‘parfum’ on product packaging without any further explanation. Hence using oils for scent is much healthier.

Ingredients:

I know some people don’t think ingredients are relevant for reviews but I post them because people with special lifestyles/diets find them essential e.g. I hate having to scour through website shops and reviews for ingredient lists before I can even consider buying an item and since many of these items are most easily accessible online I can’t just go into a shop and look at/buy them. The same can be said for people with limited mobility, time or travel/distance factors to take into account.

Jojoba Seed Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, Rosehip Seed Oil, Rosa Damascena (Rose) Flower Oil, Fragrance*, Limonene*, Linalool*, Citronellol*, Benzyl Alcohol*, Benzyl Benzoate*, Geraniol*, Citral*, Eugenol*, Farnesol*. (*From natural essential oils)

Conclusion:

Overall I’d give this 10/10 – it’s another Weleda oil that does was it says on the box and it has everything my skin needs. It’s moisturising, nourishing, improves the skin’s condition, is absorbent, long lasting and smells heavenly. I don’t need anti-aging items to fill out lines/wrinkles so this suits me just fine. For those who do I would recommend combining the oil with an unscented or complimentary scented lotion/base unless your skin can’t take heavy concoctions, in that case rose oil might not be a long term solution for you but rather an occasional item and the tester size (10ml) could be more practical.

I had tried a couple of rose products before but hadn’t been too impressed and put ‘rose’ items on the back-burner but that was until I tried this oil… Now I’m looking forward to trying other products from the rose range at Weleda, which includes soap, lotion, facial oil and body wash.

Sidenote:

I would recommend this product for women from about 30 and upwards rather than younger ages because not only does it improve skin tone but it has a mature quality to it. This is going to sound vague but it has a personality like with wines, where it’s more full bodied and wouldn’t seem appropriate for girls or young ladies. That might sound biased and of course there will be younger women who are exceptions but overall I’ll just say people throughout the ages have used rose oil as an aphrodisiac and there are people who will monitor their consumption (orally and through the skin) of particular ingredients to affect their hormones and after using this oil I understand why.

What Weleda has to say:

From the packaging:

‘Wild Rose Body Oil. Pampering care. Helps improve skin’s suppleness and elasticity leaving it smooth and radiant.’

From advertising received:

‘Musk rose oil is rich in skin-caring essential fatty acids, and helps stimulate the skin’s natural functions. The Wild Rose Smoothing Facial Care range contains a selection of products to protect, moisturise and care intensively for delicate skin. The scent is uplifting, refreshing and feminine. It takes three tonnes of fresh rose petals to make just one litre of precious essential oil of rose.

Weleda’s European beauty consultant, Lilith Schwertle, explains: “In our 30s the skin retains still its youthful resilience and elasticity but is also starting to show the fist signs of ageing, mostly around the eyes. Our unique facial characteristics are beginning to form. The skin may not glow as much as it used to in our 20s, and may be drier. At this time it’s important to support the regenerating processes in the skin with ingredients high in polyunsaturated fatty acids such as Rosa Mosqueta seed oil. This helps skin stay elastic and firm, strengthens the skin and builds up the protective barrier functions. Rose seed oil has also been traditionally used to counteract and reduce scar tissue and pigmentation, and to stimulate skin cell renewal. This nourishing oil contains vitamins A and E which help minimise the signs of ageing. Rosa Mosqueta helps the skin to maintain a harmonious balance.” ‘

Summary: A good all round oil with personality.
Advantages: Improves skin condition making it more smooth and toned. Strong scent.
Disadvantages: Some may not like the scent.

Gallery

Viridian Coconut Oil – Go To The Top Of The Class

Viridian Raw Organic Virgin Coconut Oil

FIRST IMPRESSIONS:

I won a 500g jar of Viridian Organic Raw Virgin Coconut Oil recently and being a fan of coconut oil both for external and internal health I was quite happy to receive it but then I’m a fan of coconut in general be it the juice/water, milk, cream/fat, oil, vinegar or flesh (and my parrots enjoy the husks for play housing). The first thing I noticed was the quality of the packaging which made the product a lot heavier than other coconut oils I’ve bought. It’s a dark blue, thick glass base which stays cold with a metal screw on lid – I appreciate the dark colour because it keeps the sunshine from apparently deteriorating the quality of the oil over time. There’s also a sticker on top which says ‘Soil Association Organic Food Awards 2012 – Winner’ which was nice to know and a quick search told me that it was one of Viridian’s new products.

EXPERIENCES:

I looked up the price and found that it was quite expensive at £14 for 500g, a fair bit more than I usually pay online or in store but I know that the Viridian brand stands for high quality/purity products that are carefully produced and from what I’ve seen of the coconut oil it is indeed a cut above the rest I’ve tried. For starters it has a stronger smell and slightly richer taste. The texture looks crystallized, something I rarely see in other coconut oils. Usually I don’t notice a visible texture as the solidified oil is quite smooth but I can clearly see the lines/shapes in this one. Also, it’s quicker to liquefy at body temperature and absorbs into the skin the fastest without leaving greasy marks on things I touch yet stays very solid in the container. Speaking of the container, something about its construction keeps the coconut cooler and solid. Additionally, most coconut oils I’ve used (when used alone) soften the skin but don’t necessarily make it look smoother/softer especially on the hands and feet but this one does make my skin look a bit more youthful.

As a body scrub (see end notes) it works nicely making my skin feel a bit more toned and moisturising it enough to reduce the amount of after bath/shower emollient needed. I haven’t tried it on my hair yet because it’s Winter and in cold weather coconut oil tends to go stiff, even after it’s been absorbed, and makes my hair look like straw until I’m indoors in the warmth when it suddenly goes soft and shiny. This one may be different but I’m not quite willing to try it and end up looking like Worzel Gummidge outside lol.

In regards to food use I’ve tried it on both cold and toasted yeast free breads with fruit spread and peanut butter, and in my homemade chocolate spreads (see end of review) and it spreads very nicely both cold and warm. The taste is nicer than the others I’ve used, it’s hard to describe but even though the taste is fuller bodied it’s more subtle and less ‘coconutty’ meaning that it blends better with the other flavours and doesn’t leave an aftertaste that is often not very appealing and a little gloopy on the tongue. I haven’t tried it in cooking yet so I don’t know how it holds up in higher temperatures and for longer periods (though remember that coconut is an oil best left for the end of the cooking process rather than from start to finish).

CONCLUSION:

I can’t say that I feel any healthier eating this brand of oil but I don’t feel any worse either but I know that it passes the muster because it passes my cat test. Yep that’s right – my feline ‘lil sis loves coconut oil, ever since she saw my mother using it on her skin some time ago. Now she always goes for my mother’s jar even though she has her own portion, she not only eats it (which she didn’t learn from us) but uses it to groom her fur and yes her fur is even softer for it lol. That’s not surprising given that coconut oil is high in ‘good fatty acids’ e.g. Omega 6 & 9 and Lauric acid and is very nutritionally dense in health benefits such as easing digestion and weight loss/maintenance.

catcoconut

So far I’d give this a 4/5 simply because I haven’t tried it on my hair or for cooking yet but suffice to say its prospects look good.

NOTES:

For more information you can find the product here: Viridian Coconut Oil and it shows that the price for the smaller jar is £10 for 180g therefore making the 500g version a better buy for those who regularly use coconut oil.

For those interested in ethically minded companies here’s a quick quote from one of their many ‘about us’ and ‘philosophy’ pages to give you an idea of what they’re about;

‘At the heart of Viridian Nutrition is a philosophy that cares for the natural products movement supporting organic growing, the essential nature of health and whole food stores, the respectful preservation of ancient health traditions and the sensitive introduction of innovative complementary health foods, supplements and concepts.’

viridian_raw_virgin_coconut_oil

For those interested in using coconut oil for chocolate spread here’s how I make it, roughly:

Base – 3-4 tablespoons raw cacao powder, 2 tsps coconut oil and 1-2 squeezes/dollops argave nectar or date paste (usually more date paste is needed than argave).

Toppings (if any) – fruits, fruit juice or fruit spreads e.g. berries, a bit of grape juice or a bit of pure fruit spread; and/or nuts e.g. uncooked/unsalted/unsweetened peanuts, walnuts or hazelnuts.

Mix whatever variation you have together in a jar and enjoy, whilst leaving any left in the refrigerator.

As a body scrub:

Simply mix equal amounts of coconut oil, shea butter and molasses (dark Brown) sugar or 1 part coconut oil, 1 part shea butter and 2 parts sugar. Then rub the end product over your skin whilst in the bath/shower (though of course make sure you’re not under the water whilst using it or you won’t get much on your skin).

A little goes a long way so you don’t need to make much unless you plan to store it for more than one use – you can also modify the amounts depending on what you prefer and add other ingredients such as ginger, oatmeal or essential oils.

Pukka Ayurveda Organic Skincare Collection

Pukka Products – Practical and Pretty

Pukka Ayurveda Organic Skincare Collection Gift Set Oil Serum Moisturiser Spray Toner Review 1

Disclaimer: I was kindly sent this gift set by Pukka’s online PR but all thoughts and opinions are my own after having tested the products. I made it clear that I could only test vegan friendly products and so a couple of the samples have not been reviewed but their details are given below for reference.

I was pleasantly surprised when Pukka PR contacted me, previously I had known Pukka only for their awesome teas and hadn’t realised they specialised in skincare, let alone ayurvedic skincare, as well.

WHAT IS AYURVEDA?

In brief ayurveda is an ancient and comprehensive medicinal and health care system from India. It focuses on balancing a natural healthy body with one’s surroundings in harmony mainly via prevention but also treatment. It encompasses the whole lifestyle and further depths cover areas such as foods beneficial for the body, mind and ‘spiritual’ capacities. In regards to skincare most of the companies I’ve seen that sell Ayurvedic products tend to go by the tri-dosha method where there are three general types of person (‘person’ meaning both the body type and personality) and hence provide products with ingredients that cater well to each of those types.

You can do a brief and fun quiz on Pukka to check your type here: Pukka Dosha Quiz

I personally have a huge crossover of two types with a small but still significant third type so when buying ayurvedic beauty products I tend to just have a general mindset and pick things based on ingredients I like and know work well for me. I find that acceptable for ‘light’ ayurvedic products such as the ones from Pukka with well known ingredients commonly used and grown or imported here but I tend to be more cautious with ‘heavier’ ayurvedic products with lots of exotic and often strong ingredients especially those with numerous spices. In those cases I think being a crossover type has more of a consequence since I’ve had skin irritation and long periods of breakouts after using strong products meant for one type.  After having tested some of the Pukka range I don’t personally think I need to worry about that and haven’t had any adverse reactions but I’m mentioning it for people who are new to ayurveda and are a crossover type who might think it’d be ok to use any ayurvedic product because one range was ok for them. In those cases where people are interested in a tailor made program or products they should seek the advice of experienced practitioners.

PUKKA AYURVEDA ORGANIC SKINCARE COLLECTION:

Pukka Ayurveda Organic Skincare Collection Gift Set Oil Serum Moisturiser Spray Toner Review

The darling sample set, attractively presented in a small gift box reminded me of a chocolate box – always a temptation – and contained 5 x 10ml mini sized products securely slotted inside the inner box thus safely surviving shipping and a ‘free’ 2ml sachet of oil.

1) Gentle Cleanser
2) Uplifting Toner
3) Radiance Serum – vegetarian friendly
4) Deep Moisture Day Cream – vegetarian friendly
5) Nourishing Night Cream
6) Firming Face Oil 2ml sachet
And an information leaflet

‘Completely free from parabens, petrochemicals, synthetic fragrances and colours’ and not only are the cardboard boxes recyclable but the plastic tubes along with their caps are as well.

Key for ingredient lists in review:

† Naturally occurs in essential oils
‡ Derived from plants
() Nature identical preservative system approved by Organic Standards

PRODUCT DETAILS:

1) Gentle cleanser – Organic Rosewater & Green Tea Skin Purifying Formula

INGREDIENTS
Aqua, Hemp Seed Oil*, Rose Flower Water*, Shea Butter*, Cocoa Seed Butter*, Glycerin*, Glyceryl Stearate‡, Sucrose Stearate‡, Coco-Glucoside‡, Castor Seed Oil*, Olive Fruit Oil*, Green Tea Leaf Extract*, Sunflower Seed Oil*, Aloe vera Leaf Juice Powder*, Soap Tree Bark*, Amla Fruit 100:1 Extract*, Gotu Kola Leaf 120:1 Extract*, Turmeric Root 20:1 Extract*, Manjishtha Root 70:1 Extract*, Neem Leaf 50:1 Extract*, Coconut Alcohol‡, Tocopherol‡, Xanthan Gum‡, Lactic Acid‡, Dehydroacetic Acid() , Benzyl Alcohol() , Citric Acid‡
Organic content: 92.9%

DIRECTIONS
Gently massage onto your face and neck. Rinse off with warm water.

EXPERIENCE
This product reminds me of a lotion; it’s White, creamy, has quite a thin consistency and subtle fragrance. The first time I used it I was surprised at how much grime it removed. I live in a congested city as shown by the ‘black snot’ that many of us suffer from by the end of the day but I’m still not used to seeing that much dirt on my cotton wool pad and I used more than one serving of the cleanser to completely clean my skin. I was also impressed with how soft and smooth my skin felt afterwards, another reason why this reminds me of a lotion.

On the following occasions I used the cleanser as recommended in the directions above so I couldn’t physically see how much dirt it removed but my skin felt clean and just as soft and smooth as the first time so I was happy. The cleanser removes both make up and dirt well and when I used cotton wool to rub my skin with it I used two pea sizes for my face, and three for the front and back of my neck and ears. When using the washing method I used approximately three pea sized drops in total.

I’d rate this as a 5/5

Prices:
Full size 50ml – £11.00
Individual sample 10ml – £2.50

2) Uplifting Toner – Organic Rose & Orange Flower Skin Firming Formula

INGREDIENTS
Rose Flower Water*, Orange Flower Water*, Alchohol*, Aqua, Calendula Extract*, Chamomile Flower Extract*, Marshmallow Root Extract*, Gotu Kola Leaf Extract*
Organic content: 100% of the agricultural ingredients are organic.

DIRECTIONS
Spray onto your face after cleansing or as a refresher over make-up.

EXPERIENCE
This is a handbag bonus imo, it comes in a solid glass bottle with a securely fitted spray dispenser and strong plastic lid. It’s a watery thin liquid perfect for a spray and Gold in colour. The first time I used this I was feeling very tired and insufficiently hydrated and as soon as I sprayed my face I felt instantly refreshed and invigorated. I became wide awake and all traces of sleepiness were gone. It absorbed very quickly and left my skin feeling a bit more toned.

I don’t usually use sprays over my make up but since the directions say it’s ok to do so I thought I should give it a try. It was those attempts that emphasized the only downside of this product imo, and it’s to do with the packaging not the cosmetic. The spray nozzle has one small hole in it which meant that whenever I sprayed my face with it, it came out in a splurt rather than a fine mist and that happened regardless of the pressure I used on the pump. Hence when the liquid came into contact with my skin it instantly fell down to my neck and chest if I wasn’t quick enough to stop it. Therefore I didn’t find it suitable for spraying over make up, that is unless you wear make up that won’t streak or wash off easily and it’s not something you’d want to try unless you have your make up on you to reapply afterwards just in case. To rectify the issue I sprayed the palm of one hand (both hands cleaned beforehand) to then quickly pat together with the other hand and spread the liquid over my face/neck manually, and when wearing make up lightly dabbing my hands over my face.

Overall I liked using this product before or after moisturizing in the mornings, or by itself during the day to benefit from that instant revitalization. With a nozzle adjustment it would be perfect for long haul trips too. I’d rate this as 4/5 due to the packaging which makes it difficult to fulfill its purpose, but the liquid itself does what it says in the title.

Price:
Full size 100ml – £17.50
No sample info available on site

5) Nourishing Night Cream – Organic Frankincense & Avacado Total Repair Complex

INGREDIENTS
Aqua, Hemp Seed Oil*, Rose Flower Water*, Starflower Seed Oil*, Avocado Oil*, Perilla Seed Oil*, Shea Butter*, Cocoa Seed Butter*, Glycerin*, Glyceryl Stearate‡, Sucrose Stearate‡, Coco-Glucoside‡, Pomegranate Seed Oil*, Sesame Seed Oil*, Aloe vera Leaf Juice Powder*, Amla Fruit 100:1 Extract*, Gotu Kola Leaf 120:1 Extract*, Turmeric Root 20:1 Extract*, Manjishtha Root 70:1 Extract*, Neem Leaf 50:1 Extract*, Frankincense Oil*, Australian Sandalwood Wood Oil*, Coconut Alcohol‡, Tocopherol‡, Xanthan Gum‡, Lactic Acid‡, Dehydroacetic Acid()­, Benzyl Alcohol()­, Limonene†
Organic content: 92.9%

DIRECTIONS
Apply a blueberry sized amount to your face and neck after cleansing and toning.

EXPERIENCE
This product is a White cream, with a subtle smell and slightly more oily feeling/texture than the cleanser mentioned above. Using the recommended method of application I could just about spread it all over my face and the front of my neck if I was fast since it absorbs very quickly so I found that it’d sink into my hands or fingertips faster than I could apply it and it absorbed into my face just as quickly. I had to apply it swiftly in one direction over my face to get it everywhere otherwise parts would be missed if applied randomly and there wouldn’t be enough left on the hands/fingertips to spread in different directions. There was not enough for the back of the neck and ears so I had to use extra.

The cream left my skin feeling soft and full but not moisturized to the level I usually associate with night creams. That thought was validated in the morning when my skin felt dry. My solution was to either use more before going to bed or topping up during the night. However that still didn’t leave my skin feeling or looking well nourished or significantly softer.

Overall I’d rate this as a 3.5/5 as according to the leaflet the cream is designed for dry to damaged skin whereas I have normal skin and dehydrate internally quickly yet the cream didn’t last long enough or work deep enough for me so I don’t know how dry skin would fare. It might work better for people with normal to moist/oily skin however bearing in mind that this is an ayurvedic product it is blended with certain body balances in mind which was the reason why I didn’t combine it with another moisturizer or oil to further provide for my skin overnight.

It might have properties that work best slowly overnight but personally I see the night and sleep time as the perfect opportunity to make up for what the skin goes through during the day as well as a chance to add the nourishment the skin could have gotten through the day but didn’t i.e. because it wouldn’t be very presentable to have a visible layer of moisturizer on. Hence I like a night cream to give me extra in all those important areas both visibly and invisibly e.g. nourishment, softness, suppleness and if I’m lucky a youthful radiance. I don’t expect it to last throughout the day but I like it to last at least until I wake up and wash. I couldn’t really see or feel those factors in the mornings after using this cream.

Prices:
Full size 50ml – £28.00
Individual sample 10ml – £2.50

6) Firming face oil – Organic Starflower, Arnica & Rosehip Mature Skin Formula

INGREDIENTS
Evening Primrose Seed Oil*, Hemp Seed Oil*, Sesame Seed Oil*, Rosehip Fruit Oil*, Sunflower Seed Oil*, Starflower Seed Oil*, Poppy Seed Oil*, Wheatgerm Oil*, Neroli Flower Oil*, St John’s Wort Extract*, Tocopherol‡, Petitgrain Leaf Oil*, Arnica Flower Extract*, Amla Fruit 100:1 Extract*, Gotu Kola Leaf 120:1 Extract*, Turmeric Root 20:1 Extract*, Manjishtha 70:1 Extract*, Neem 50:1 Extract*, Citral†, Geraniol†, Farnesol†, Limonene†, Linalool†.
Organic content: 99.9%

DIRECTIONS
Apply a small amount to your face and neck before, or instead of, moisturising.

EXPERIENCE
Even though this oil is described as for mature skin, I’m 30 years old hence my skin isn’t young or old but it’s not far off from either and since I love oils I was still glad to give this a try. Plus looking at the ingredients I figured that even though they may be particularly beneficial for mature skin they wouldn’t be detrimental to younger skin, though I’m no expert and don’t claim to know how the combinations of the ingredients would work – but still, I risked it and wasn’t worse for wear 🙂

My first impression was that it was a nice, light oil and the scent strangely reminded me of soap – not a bad thing in the slightest as I love natural soaps, also some people might find that refreshing. I found that a little went a long way and it absorbed quickly in comparison to most of the oils I’ve used.

It left my skin feeling soft and a bit more taught around the eyes and mouth. Those benefits lasted with multiple uses and the oil is light enough to wear during the day if you use a thin layer and have a little time to let it sink in fully if you want to add make up afterwards, but it also works well overnight if you use a suitable amount to last. I found that when I used it twice a day the overall condition of my skin felt better, it didn’t have a noticeably youthful effect but the skin felt improved. I surmise that with long term use the benefits would be recognized more and since a little of the oil goes a long way a full sized version should show that.

I’d  rate this as a 4.5/5 since it’s not really designed for my skin but did help it a little.

Prices:
Full size 30ml – £38.00
Individual sample 2ml – £0.40

PRODUCTS NOT TESTED

3) Radiance Serum – Organic Aloe Vera & Manuka Honey Revitalising Formula

INGREDIENTS
Aloe Vera Leaf Juice*, Manuka Honey*, Xanthan Gum‡, Honeysuckle Flower Extract, Roman Chamomile Flower Water*, Australian Sandalwood Wood Oil*, Olive Leaf 1:1 Extract*, Amla Fruit 100:1 Extract*, Gotu Kola Leaf 120:1 Extract*, Turmeric Root 20:1 Extract*, Tulsi Leaf 70:1 Extract*, Lemon Balm Leaf 1:1 Extract*, Passion Flower 1:1 Extract*, Citric Acid‡, Potassium Sorbate()­
Organic content: 97.5%

DIRECTIONS
Apply a thin layer to your face and neck before moisturising.

DESCRIPTION
Aloe vera and manuka honey to soothe and refresh. Gotu kola and lemon balm to tone and brighten the complexion.

Prices:
Full size 50ml – £32.00
Individual sample 10ml – £2.50

4) Deep Moisture Day Cream – Organic Neroli & Shea Butter Deep Nuture Complex

INGREDIENTS
Aqua, Hemp Seed Oil*, Jojoba Seed Oil*, Shea Butter*, Beeswax*, Rose Flower Water*, Rosehip Fruit Oil*, Poppy Seed Oil*, Cocoa Seed Butter*, Glycerin*, Glyceryl Stearate‡, Coco-Glucoside‡, Sucrose Stearate‡, Coconut Alcohol‡, Amla Fruit 100:1 Extract*, Gotu Kola Leaf 120:1 Extract*, Turmeric Root 20:1 Extract*, Tulsi Leaf 70:1 Extract*, Pomegranate Seed Oil*, Aloe vera Leaf Juice Powder*, Neroli Flower Oil*, Ylang Ylang Flower Oil*, Tocopherol‡, Xanthan Gum‡, Lactic Acid‡, Dehydroacetic Acid() , Benzyl Alcohol() , Citral †, Eugenol †, Iso Eugenol †, Benzyl Salicylate †, Geraniol †, Farnesol †, Linalool
Organic content: 92.6%

DIRECTIONS
Apply a blueberry sized amount to your face and neck after cleansing and toning.

DESCRIPTION
Neroli flower and shea butter to soothe and soften. Rosehip and poppy seed oil to firm and protect.

Prices:
Full size 50ml – £26.00
Individual size 10ml – £2.50

CONCLUSION

This is a lovely set of high quality products with practical variety and caters to various skincare needs. It’s presented just right for a gift or personal treat and makes an interesting introduction to complex skincare principles.

I’m thankful for the opportunity to try these and share my experiences.

The set can be purchased at http://www.pukkaherbs.com/organic-skincare-collection.html for £18.90

MuLondon Promotion – Send in a review for freebies!

MuLove = free MuLondon products & accessories (worldwide)

mulondon-natural-organic-vegan-skincare

I love a company that listens to its customers and rewards them and so was happy to be informed about a great promotion from the fabulous MuLondon.

Here’s what you do and what you get:

– Video review (2 minutes+): FREE MuLondon product + accessory of your choice, sent to anywhere in the world! Worth £35+.

– Text review (100 words+) with an image of you and your MuLondon product: £8 MuLondon voucher + T-shirt or a cosmetic bag! Worth £18.

– Text review (100 words+): £3 MuLondon voucher + small coin purse! Worth £8.

Outstanding videos and images will get extra prizes! Worldwide entries are welcome.

Rules:

Make your submissions through my contact page: http://www.mulondon.com/contact/ – Mark your entry “MuLove” and enclose the links to your image or video. You will get a personal response within 48 hours.

Text reviews need to be at least 100 words. Images should be submitted as high-resolution files, at least 800x800px. Videos can be uploaded via YoutTube or Vimeo and need to be at least 2 minutes long and in English. This promotion is available worldwide and subject to quality control. Complimentary accessories are sent out with your next order. MuLondon reserves the right to disqualify invalid or inappropriate entries. One submission per person per month. The promotion applies to new reviews only. By submitting text, images and video, you grant MuLondon the rights to use these. That said – have fun, be creative – and please share to let your friends know.

For more info about the promotion, prizes and tips go HERE