We’re currently in the process of moving cities (again), so I don’t have my usual arsenal of beauty products to pick and choose from. Instead, I’ve hand-picked a selection of new lovelies that I’ve been itching to try and have been putting them to good use over the past month or so.
In this post, I’ll be sharing a handful of beauties that have really impressed me and that I literally can’t stop using, starting with local brand Naturals Beauty’s new Shampoo and Conditioner.
Both these products are made using natural and certified organic ingredients, and they also happen to be both cruelty-free and vegan-friendly. I’ve been using natural haircare products for a little while now, so I didn’t experience the usual detoxing process when I first started using them, but be aware that you may experience this process when you first start using them. You may find that you hair feels either sticky, matted or greasy, or incredibly dry and brittle. Do not panic! This is simply your hair and scalp ridding itself of the build-up of plastics, silicones, and chemicals from all the previous hair products you’ve used. This is known as a detoxification process and could last for anywhere between 2 weeks to 2 months, but hang in there! The switch to using a natural, organic alternative is well worth the hassle, and before long, your hair will be super-soft and shiny again – and minus all the guilt!
I’m absolutely sold on this new range of haircare products from Naturals Beauty. Not only do they smell divine and give my hair a proper cleanse, they also leave it feeling soft and smooth – and a whole lot more manageable. They don’t contain any parabens, synthetic fragrances, silicones, or mineral oils, and they’re also biodegradable (so perfect if you’re using grey water to water your garden). I did a full post on these products if you’d like to read more; click here to read that post now.
You all know how much I love a good body scrub, so when legendary British beauty brand, Cowshed, first launched in SA, this Grumpy Cow Uplifting Shower Scrub was the first product I picked up. It boasts a deliciously citrus scent that lingers on my skin all day long – in a good way! This is all down to the combination of invigorating mandarin, bitter orange, and grapefruit essential oils, which have a mood-boosting effect and really help to get me going first thing in the morning.
The scrub has a great grit to it, so if you’re a fan of a good scrub (like I am), I reckon you’ll love it. It also contains Grape Seed Oil that leaves a gorgeous, moisturising film on your skin (without being greasy or oily), while Bamboo particles and Ginseng work to slough away dead skin cells for overall brighter, more ‘glowy’ skin. I’ve just finished my tube, and I’m already mourning the loss of my new favourite body scrub!
If you haven’t tried LUSH’s Dream Cream yet, get yourself down to your nearest LUSH store and pick up a tub immediately. This heavenly lotion has been an absolute life saver this winter! It boasts a lovely, lightweight texture that simply melts into your skin, but it’s still incredibly hydrating at the same time – no stickiness in sight!
I adore the calming blend of oatmilk and lavender, which means that it’s safe to use on even the most sensitive skins. Now I don’t have a sensitive skin type, but my husband gets the occasional bout of eczema and has an incredibly dry skin at times, so it’s great to have something in my kit that he can use, too. I also can’t get enough of the smell of this cream – it has a very gentle, soothing scent that isn’t at all overpowering (or overly sweet). Everything about LUSH’s Dream Cream is pure perfection!
While we’re talking all things LUSH, I simply have to mention one of their latest additions (or a newbie to my LUSH collection, at least): LUSH Fomo Jelly Face Mask. This face mask is unlike every other face mask you’ve tried before! When you first pop open the tub, you’ll see that this mask comes in a solid, jelly form. The idea is that you break off a little piece, gently warm it up between your fingers till it becomes a paste, then apply to your face and neck. At first, I was worried that I wouldn’t get many uses out of this face mask, but you really only need the teeniest amount – a blob the size of a 20 cent piece is enough to cover my whole face and neck.
FOMO contains soothing rose oil and calming calamine, so it’s ideal for those with a more sensitive skin type. As I mentioned above, I don’t have a particularly sensitive skin, but I am prone to angry breakouts and I find that this works a treat at calming red, inflammed skin. It also contains neroli, which is fantastic for giving your skin a brightening boost.
I’ve sadly finished my tub, but I have five empty containers so I’ll be heading to my nearest LUSH to stock up on his beauty once again, and to get my free fresh face mask! (In case you didn’t know, if you return five empty tubs to your nearest LUSH store, you’ll get a free fresh face mask. I hope they have another favourite, MagnaMinty in stock for me!)
It’s not often that I do fragrance reviews, simply because I find that I tend to stick to the same fragrances day in and day out (Thierry Mugler’s Angel and Chanel Gabrielle are my two signature scents), but I’ve found myself spritzing Alien Flora Futura almost every single day!
I’m usually more an Angel girl than an Alien gal (Thierry Mugler fans will know that most of the time, you’re an either/ or), but this fresh floral-woody composition has me hooked! It has warm, sparkling notes of jasmine, white amber, and sandalwood that start off as a beautifully fresh and feminine scent, before settling into a warm, comforting woody dry down. It really is exquisite, so if you’re in the market for a new fragrance (or you’re looking for a special gift), definitely check this one out.
I’ve also been putting a few goodies from Crabtree & Evelyn’s La Source collection to the test, and let me tell you: I am obsessed with this soap! The La Source Exfoliating Massage Bar is simply divine – it creates a beautifully luxurious lather, and the little nodules really do help to ease out any knots on your upper shoulders and neck. It also contains apricot seed and walnut shell powders to give your skin a gentle buff and polish. As for the scent? Oh, the scent!
I am absolutely besotted with the refreshing, crisp scent of the entire range. It really does smell like the ocean, and leaves you with a bit of a spring in your step. I’ve also been using the hand cream every time I wash my hands (it’s deliciously lightweight and super-nourishing), and the Crabtree & Evelyn La Source Eau de la Source fragrance is another gem I’ve been spritzing on the regular.
It boasts crisp, marine accords with zesty petigrain and basil notes, and a lovely warm hint of amber… it’s my go-to when my spirit needs a bit of a pick-me-up, as it always reminds me of a stroll on the beach. Unlike so many other fragrances, it also contains Crabtree & Evelyn’s green seaweed extract, which is rich in anti-oxidants and also boasts skin-protecting benefits, so it’s not only good for the soul… it’s also good for your skin! Such a clever concept – and one that will result in many, many repurchases from my side in the future!
Ok, so this one took my by surprise, as it’s not the norm for me to use – let alone enjoy – a granular facial scrub. I usually stick to chemical exfoliants (these have a smooth consistency, but contain active ingredients that help to dissolve the bonds between dead skin cells), but I loved the Hey Gorgeous Goji Berry Facial Scrub so much that I managed to finish the entire tub within a month. I looooooved it! It smells divine (I was even tempted to have a taste, it smells that good!), and despite the fact that it contains sugar granules to exfoliate your skin, it wasn’t overly harsh and didn’t leave my skin red, raw, or irritated.
If anything, my skin looked brighter and more even-toned after just two weeks (I used this beauty every second night), and I found that it really helped to nix breakouts before they could wreak havoc on my skin. The shea butter and coconut oil also meant that my skin was left feeling really moisturised and nourished after every use. It really is a fabulous product, and I love that it’s local, cruelty-free, and suitable for vegans. An absolute must-try, in my opinion! (And a big thank you to my friend, Bel, for the introduction to this great product!)
This one may not be a beauty favourite, but it’s something I couldn’t resist mentioning all the same – and if you’re a fan of lists, journaling, and bullet journaling (like me), I know you’re going to love it, too!
I’ve been using a bullet journal for about five years now, and I’ve spoken to so many friends and readers who say that they are so tempted to give it a go, but that they don’t feel that they’re creative enough or that their writing is neat enough. The Little Bullet Book sorts that all out for you, with beautiful templates and pages that are ready for you to colour and fill out to your heart’s content.
You can start by filling out the weekly and monthly to-do spreads, then colour and complete an array of fun lists, like an exercise log, your favourite movies, and even a page dedicated to your favourite ‘me-time’ activities.
I still use my dedicated bullet journal, but I won’t deny that I’ve spent a good few hours solidly absorbed in this little bullet journal – it’s so much fun! (You can buy it for R275 on Takealot – click here to get yours now).