I’m back with the second blog post in my ‘Best Of Beauty 2015’ series – I’ve rounded up my top bath and body care products that will deliver smooth, glowing skin fast.
Choosing a handful of favourite bath & body care products was such a difficult process for me. When I first started going through all the products in my collection (trust me, there’s a lot!) I was walking around the house like a zombie. I walked back and forth between the bedroom and my beauty room for probably 20 minutes – I just couldn’t pick 5 or 6 favourites. My most-used products are usually in the bedroom but I also have a stash of ‘favourites’ in my beauty room to remind me to feature them on the blog or my social media platforms. Having a beauty room isn’t as fabulous as it sounds, I had to convert the study into a ‘beauty room’ where I can film, take photos, store all my makeup and keep all the new products that are sent my way on a weekly basis. If I had to store everything in our bedroom, Neal would probably have had a nervous breakdown by now. I’m not complaining at all – I’m very blessed to be in a position where brands send me products every other day but it gets a bit overwhelming since I also like to feature products that I’ve bought with my own money.
Head over to my ‘Best Of Beauty 2014 – Bath & Body Care’ blog post from last year, 2 of the products mentioned (numbers 4 and 5) are still must-haves in my bath & body care routine. Oh, and I’m still hoping Vaseline will be bringing number 7 to South Africa soon!
You can also take a look at my ‘Best Of Beauty 2015 – Hair Care’ blog post here.
Beauty Treats Watermelon Sugar Lip Scrub ♥ R29,95
Let me start off by saying I think this product is a bit like Marmite, you’re either going to love it or you’re going to hate it. Clearly I love it because it’s in my annual favourites post, here’s why: This is a very gentle scrub that contains natural sugars to exfoliate and buff your lips, leaving them feeling soft and smooth. I really love this affordable option, it smells like watermelon sweeties and when I got a bit of the taste in my mouth (unintentionally, of course), it was delectably sweet. I like the squeeze tube packaging, it’s much more user-friendly (and hygienic) than potted lip scrubs. Here’s why I think some people might not like it as much – it’s a lot more gentle than for example the LUSH lip scrub (which is basically 80% sugar and 20% oils). The Beauty Treats lip scrub feels like a thick jelly on the lips and isn’t saturated with sugar crystals, which is great if you find the LUSH lip scrub is a bit too abrasive for your liking. I still love my LUSH lip scrub (featured here) for those days when I really need a good exfoliation, but this little tube is more for everyday use. Because this scrub doesn’t contain as much sugar crystals, you have to massage it into the lips for a bit longer (it takes a bit more effort) but it definitely gets rid of all the dead / flaky skin on the lips.
I like to squeeze a small amount on my index finger and massage it into my lips, it contains an ingredient that is similar to petroleum jelly and so it coats the lips with an oily layer. I then remove the scrub (and oily layer) with a warm washcloth to get rid of everything on the lips, you won’t be able to rinse the oily layer off with just lukewarm water. The scrub isn’t drying and my lips feel smooth and comfortable after using it. Beauty Treats products are cruelty free, and there are currently 6 flavours available: Strawberry, watermelon, mango, raspberry, peach and cranberry.
You will find this at your nearest Dis-Chem store, but you’ll have to really look for it as I stumbled upon it by chance. I was browsing a shelf I hardly ever visit – the one where they sell those super affordable makeup palettes that contain like 50 eyeshadows or 10 blushes.
Dove Purely Pampering Pistachio Cream With Magnolia Nourishing Shower Gel ♥ R43,95 (500ml)
Gosh, I waited so long for this shower gel to make its way to South Africa…and it’s finally available here! I recall YouTubers and beauty bloggers raving about this back in 2014, and I must admit the combination of pistachio and magnolia sounded like a match made in heaven. I was walking around Dis-Chem last year (you guys must think Dis-Chem is my home away from home) and by chance noticed this new body wash from Dove. I was both surprised and happy, and popped it in my basket without even sniffing it first because I was knew I was going to love it. I could feel it in my bones, it was fate.
Turns out, this is my SECOND 500ml bottle in 6 months – keep in mind I am a beauty blogger and I am constantly testing out new bath & body products. So being onto my second bottle is definitely saying something. Let’s get to the reason why I’m featuring it in this blog post: The scent is unique – almost like that of a dessert but not overly sweet. Magnolia provides a pretty floral note, which adds a feminine touch and pistachio gives it a rich & creamy base note. The one doesn’t overpower the other, they are perfectly balanced – you definitely won’t notice a straight-up pistachio nut fragrance and it doesn’t have a heavy floral fragrance either. There’s a tiny bit of both, and the end-result is warm, creamy, fresh, and sweet.
It creates a thick & creamy lather, almost like washing your body with a mixture of soap and a body lotion – it feels both luxurious and very moisturising. So much so, that I can actually skip the moisturising step on those lazy days when I just can’t be bothered to apply a body lotion. I’ve also used this as a shaving lotion and it works great, the creaminess allows the razor to glide over the skin, plus it also leaves the skin hydrated without any type of residue. I highly suggest you give it a whiff the next time you’re at the shops, I think it just might find its way into your basket.
Dove products are sold at Dis-Chem, Clicks, supermarkets, and other pharmacies.
The Tan Lab Self Tan ♥ R280,00
This self-tanning product won my heart during 2015. I haven’t always been the biggest fan of fake tanning, mainly because I can’t stand the smell of most self-tanners. I love the way bronzed skin looks and I do feel most makeup looks ‘pop’ more when your skin is a bit darker in tone, but I’m also a lazy gal unfortunately. The whole process of using self-tanning mitt, self-tan mousse and all that rubbing & blending is exhausting! Just the thought of all that effort makes me want to take a nap… *snores* And I don’t like tanning in the sun, for many reasons but the main one being premature ageing.
Enter, The Tan Lab… I love this self-tan for 3 reasons: It’s super quick & easy to apply, because it is a gel-cream formula and you basically apply it like you would a body lotion (just make sure you blend properly). The tan I get from the ‘Medium’ shade is gorgeous, it’s a noticeable golden bronze shade (very natural, not orange at all) and it lasts for aaaages. I usually get 7 days’ wear before it starts to fade, and then it fades quite slowly and evenly as well. Third reason, the scent isn’t that bad at all – the lotion itself smells like a creme caramel dessert to me (not really sweet, just creamy). I’m not going to lie, though, after about 20 minutes there is a tiny whiff of that self-tan fragrance but nothing too hectic. I like to apply my self-tan after I’ve showered, and before I go to bed because that means the scent won’t bother me that much. Oh! And another pro of using this is it doesn’t transfer to sheets at all, unless it’s been a really hot Summer’s night and you have ‘glowed’ while you sleep (ladies don’t sweat / perspire, remember, we glow).
Their products work on a 2-phase development process, meaning your tan will continue to develop and darken over a 24 hour period. During the 1st phase, your base colour tan develops over the normal 8 to 12 hour period and during phase 2, your tan will continue to develop even after showering. The full development period of one of the ingredients (Erythrulose) is 24 hours so expect a deeper tan to develop over the next day.
If you’re into cruelty-free products, The Tan Lab is definitely the brand for you – their products are also vegan friendly, pH-balanced, and contain only the highest quality Eco Certified ingredients.
Top Tip: Active tanning ingredients absorb a lot quicker on drier areas of the body, so I suggest applying a thin layer of body lotion to your ankles, wrists and elbows first.
Vaseline Intensive Care Lightly Fragranced Body Lotion ♥ R26,95 (200ml)
I’m the worst when it comes to remembering to apply a body lotion after my bath / shower. Fortunately I don’t have very dry skin to begin with, so I can get away with skipping a day or two, especially if I’ve used a nourishing body wash (like the Dove one mentioned above). However, there is one body lotion that I constantly reached for during 2015 (and still reach for every single night). I was sent a rather large press pack during last year that contained various sized tubs and bottles of all Vaseline’s various ranges (Cocoa Glow, Aloe Soothe, Fragrance Free and Lightly Fragranced). Neal got first dibs, and chose the fragrance free lotion because he’s all manly and doesn’t want to smell like a girl – haha! I then sniffed the other ranges and instantly fell in love with the ‘Lightly Fragranced’ one (so I kept both the 400ml and 200ml lotions, and the 350ml cream tub for myself). All the other ones were given to friends and family – way too much for just one girl to use. I must add, I also liked the Aloe Soothe scent and kept a 200ml lotion in case Neal ever gets sunburnt (which happens quite often since he is always out & about on his mountain bike or road bike).
Wow, that was a long story… And I’m sure it didn’t really enrich your life.
Anyway, Vaseline lotions have always been a favourite of mine (since high school) but this lightly fragranced one stole my heart and I can see myself repurchasing this time and time again. The lotion (or cream, whichever formula you prefer) feels lightweight on the skin and absorbs really fast. There’s nothing like still feeling sticky / greasy 15 minutes after you have applied your body lotion (especially during Summer). Blegh! This formula is suitable for all skin types, and will get rid of any dry or ashy areas on the body because it contains micro-droplets of Vaseline jelly. I can see myself switching over to the body cream (in the tub) when Winter arrives, but for the time-being I’m very happy with using the lotion. This has become an essential product in my bedtime routine, it’s all I use to soften and nourish my hands and feet right before I go to bed – AND the floral & feminine fragrance is so soothing, it helps me to drift off to the land of nod in no time at all. What I also love about it, is that the fragrance is so subtle it won’t interfere with your favourite perfume should you apply it after your morning shower. Vaseline body lotions are moisturising, non-sticky and come in a range of fragrances – not to mention they’re super affordable. What’s not to love?
Vaseline body products are sold at Clicks, Dis-Chem, supermarkets, and other pharmacies. Eeeeep! The 400ml size is on sale for R29,95 in the Dis-Chem online store here.
LUSH Fizzbanger Bath Bomb ♥ R52,50
Before you read any further, head over to my ‘Best Of Beauty 2014 – Bath & Body Care’ blog post from last year to check out the Bubble Bar I featured there. It’s still my absolute favourite bubble-icious bath time treat but I didn’t want to mention it again in this blog post because I’d just be repeating exactly what I said in that blog post.
I don’t know about you, but I love the feeling of taking a relaxing bath every now and again – it helps to melt all the day’s stress away. It doesn’t matter how tired or lazy I’m feeling, I always try to take a nice soothing bath at least once a week. In terms of bath goodies I go for, LUSH is my brand of choice, because their products can turn a simple bath into a fun spa-like experience.
This Bath Bomb is known as the ‘Big Friendly Ballistic’, and was inspired by Roald Dahl’s Big Friendly Giant (I loved that book, although the evil man-eating giants did freak me out a bit). It contains warm & spicy cinnamon leaf oil, sweet & uplifting Petitgrain oil, and floral ylang ylang oil. The first time I popped this bad boy in the bath, I was expecting a spicy, floral scent. I was delighted to find that it filled the bathroom with a refreshing lemony scent (more like lemongrass, not sweet lemon). And then, while it’s fizzing away in the bath water the scent changes to a fruity apple scent – so interesting! It starts by fizzing in frothy yellow swirls, and then blues and greens whirl around the tub. Last but certainly not least, this colourful spectrum of a show ends off with miniature fireworks thanks to the popping candy that is housed in the centre of this yellow orb. Oh! AND you’ll see a little piece of paper floating around in the bath water with “BANG!” written on it! So fun! 2015 was the year I fell in love with Fizzbanger and I have a feeling I’m going to love it for years to come.
I usually like to create my own LUSH cocktails i.e. mix a piece of a Bubble Bar with half a Bath Bomb – that way I get the best of both worlds. But I must admit, Fizzbanger creates such a colourful show that I never add a Bubble Bar because the bubbles would just cover up the magical bright green bath water.
Did you know? Petitgrain is used in aromatherapy to calm the breathing, slow the heartbeat and reduce feelings of anxiety.
LUSH products are available in the LUSH South Africa online store or at your nearest LUSH store (Cavendish, V&A Waterfront, Canal Walk, Gateway, Dainfern Square and Rosebank Mall).
I hope you enjoyed my roundup of all my favourite bath & body products for 2015 – there were probably another handful of products that I could have mentioned but I decided to feature only my holy grail favourites.
You may have noticed that I didn’t feature a body scrub this year, and I think it’s because 1. I didn’t test a lot of body scrubs this past year; and 2. The ones that I did use, didn’t really tickle my fancy. I am, however, on the hunt for a good scrub (not too abrasive) and so I’m handing the mic to you…what is YOUR current favourite body scrub?