Lucy B’s Beauty: Brand Review

Hello everyone!

If you did not get a chance to catch up on my previous post HERE, do check it out! I had the opportunity to interview the co founder and CEO of Lucy B’s Beauty! Today I want to share with you some of the lovely products the brand has to offer. Let’s talk about my favorite product first, the Hydra Bloom Rose Bath and Body oil!

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Lucy B’s Hydra Bloom Rose Bath and Body oil

This is what I’d call Spring in a bottle! It was really nice to receive this in the mail a day before a snowstorm hit us. It reminded me of spring which is my favorite time of the year. Not only does this look beautiful on your bath room counter this guy provides some serious moisture to the skin.

This oil can be used in a variety of ways, a face oil, adding a few drops to your bath water or using it right after your bath. I personally like to use this when I step out of the shower and just rub it on my damp skin. The result is supple hydrated skin!

The oil is a bend of Argan oil, Sunflower seed oil, Vitamin E, Rose Geranium Essential oil, Organic Rose buds and Lucy B’s signature Australian Flower essences (Boab, Five Corners, Dog Rose, Sturt Desert Rose and Southern Cross). The ingredients sound great don’t they?!

The smell of the rose body oil is not strong, in fact it is extremely subtle that even someone who generally doesn’t like rose scented products (I’m looking at you mom..if you’re reading this :D) can use this. In case you don’t like anything with rose in it they do offer a lavender bath and body oil too!

The other product Lucy kindly sent me, is a lip gloss from their Apothecary collection. I always have a lip gloss hanging around in my bag (or diaper bag these days!) especially during the colder months. I always like to use a lip gloss to provide some instant hydration when on the go and this one does the job nicely.

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Lucy B’s tinted lip gloss in Cocoa berry

The gloss also has a nice vanilla scent to it. It is a bit sticky but in the winter months I do not mind it so much. I really like the shade cocoa berry. They offer their tinted glosses in 3 other shades in addition to this. Do check out their website .

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Cocoa berry swatched

Overall, I really enjoyed both the products I received from Lucy B’s Beauty. The Hydra Bloom Rose oil makes an amazing gift and the gloss is a nice staple for on the go touch ups. I am looking forward to trying out Lucy B’s shimmer oils once it’s summer!

Have you tried anything from Lucy B’s Beauty? If not what would you like to try?

Until next time, ciao!!

 

*PR Sample. Opinions expressed here are my own. (no affiliate links)

 

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Natio Argan and Almond Facial Cleansing balm

Hello folks!

One of the things I love about travelling is trying out new beauty products ( and of course food!) I can’t find back at home. Natio is an Australian natural beauty brand that I picked up in India. They have lots of skincare products ,color cosmetics and also candles. I found their products to be reasonably priced. I picked up the Argan and Almond facial cleaning balm and also a 10 minute brightening mask which I’ll talk about in detail soon.

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Natio Argan and Almond facial cleansing balm

The balm comes in a no frills tube which makes it an ideal travel companion. I am a fan of using cleansing oils to remove makeup, but travelling with them can be a bit difficult. This guy sorted that problem! The only con was that every once in a while when it gets cold, the oils in the tube solidify to a thick paste that you need to use a bit of pressure to get out. This also sometimes results in too much of the stuff coming out of the tube at once.

The balm is easy to use, just like any cleansing oil you take some of the balm and work it gently onto your dry face. Once the oils break down all your makeup, wash with water to get all your makeup off. I found the balm to be good at removing all my makeup including heavy eye makeup. This does have a slight herbal smell, which does not bother me at all since it is quite mild.

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Ingredient List

As you can see the ingredient list is quite nice! I love that Almond oil is number 2 on the ingredient list. The herbal smell is likely due to the combination of all the different flower oils listed.

After you wash off the cleansing balm with water, it leaves a coating/residue on the skin which I suspect is due to the beeswax and candelilla wax. This is not an issue for me since I always double cleanse when I wear makeup , so after the cleansing balm step, I go in with a foaming cleanser to make sure everything is cleaned off from my face. If you were looking to use this as your only cleanser this might be a deal breaker unless your skin is so dry it loves that waxy layer 🙂

Overall, I really like this cleansing balm and look forward to trying more of their products! I found some of Natio’s products on amazon so maybe I don’t have to travel too far to try something more from the brand!

Have you tried Natio products? What do you recommend I try from them next?

Until next time, ciao!!!

A discontinued favorite: The Body Shop Moroccan Black Olive & Argan Oil Scrub

Hey everyone!!

Hope you guys are having a fabulous Wednesday! Don’t you hate it when a company discontinues a favorite product of yours 😦 (First world problems). When I first found out that the Body Shop is discontinuing its Moroccan line in the Spa Wisdom series I hoarded a few jars of the Moroccan Black Olive and Argan oil scrub 😀 Now that I am down to the last bits of the last jar I was inspired to write this post! I have no idea why they discontinued this product especially since anything Argan oil is the ‘ in ‘ thing right now. I thought I’d share why I like this product and why I want The body shop to bring it back 🙂

The Body Shop Argan oil and Olive scrub
The Body Shop Argan oil and Olive scrub
  • I find this a reasonably priced body scrub in a really nice jar. Now although the jar is nice, the consistency of product makes a tube more easy to manage. But, I have no complaints..I like the jar and it can be easily re purposed. I have used the empty jars to hold coins, hair pins etc.
It has a pretty lid too !
It has a pretty lid too !
  • Now lets discuss the product inside..this is slightly different in texture compared to other body scrubs I’ve used in the past. It has a jelly like consistency with the scrub particles suspended in it. I know, it doesn’t exactly sound very appealing but I liked the whole jelly thing once I started using it.! The grainy stuff in this scrub is ground olive seeds and argan nut shell powder.
Jelly like texture
Jelly like texture
  • The reason I love this scrub is because its gentle on my skin. It gives the desired scrubbing effect at the same time doesn’t dry out my skin or make it red or give that burning feeling that you get when you use really harsh body scrubs. The jelly like part of this scrub does contain skin conditioning  ingredients like glycerin, Olive oil and Argan oil. I do find that my skin feels silky smooth after I step out of the shower!
  • I have to admit that initially I wasn’t a big fan of the smell. It smells a bit orangey and floral and sometimes a bit like shampoo! But it is a mild scent which I have gotten used to I guess since it doesn’t bother me so much any more!
  • The only downside to this scrub is that the scrubbing grains(ground olive seeds and argan shell powder)  do not dissolve in water unlike the traditional salt and sugar based body scrubs so you might have to check your shower area after you step out to make sure all of the scrub grains have gone down the drain.

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Like I mentioned in the beginning of this post, I wish The Body Shop would bring this back! Meanwhile I might just try out the African salt scrub from the Spa wisdom series which is still available for purchase once my current  jar finishes up! Does anyone else like this scrub?  Tell me about a favorite product of yours thats been discontinued 🙂 and if your a blogger..do blog about it!

Until next time ciao!!

 

The wonderful properties of Argan oil..backed by science or not?

Hi everyone!

Its been a while since Argan oil became the new darling of the beauty industry and the fascination with this Moroccan oil is still going strong! I thought I’ll try dig out some science data about Argan oil and see if the scientific community has any strong evidence supporting all the touted effects  this oil supposedly has on our skin and hair.

Argan oil -background

Argan oil is derived from the nuts of the Argania spinosa tree which is native to the semi arid southwest region of Morocco. The tree and its fruit are very much central to the local economy in the region. Argan oil is primarily used as a cooking oil in these regions in addition to being used to treat skin problems. The oil for cosmetic use  is extracted from unroasted nuts so that there are no unwanted nutty smells to the oil.  Due to the increased global interest in Argan oil both as a gourmet food ingredient and a cosmetic ingredient, it is currently one of the most expensive edible oils!

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The Argania spinosa tree nut from which Argan oil is extracted. (source: wikimedia commons)

Composition of Argan Oil

Argan oil is rich in Tocopherols (vitamin E)  and fatty acids (oelic acid, linoleic acid, palmitic acid and stearic acid). Additionally, triterpene alcohols, sterols,  carotenoids and squalene are also present.

 Argan oil in skincare

The skincare market is flooded with products, both high end and slightly more affordable versions, claiming to give you the benefits of Argan oil. If you are interested in purchasing a product with argan oil, I suggest you check the ingredient list. If Argan oil is listed among the first 3 to 4 ingredients in the ingredient list that means there is a significant amount of the oil in the product. The higher on the ingredient list a particular compound or oil is listed the more of it there is in the product. When purchasing 100% pure argan oil make sure the ingredient label doesn’t  just say Moroccan oil (higher chances that its adulterated with other oils) but states either 100% pure argan oil or 100% pure argania spinosa oil with no other ingredients along with it. Now lets take a look at some of the claims that manufacturers state in their marketing material and see if there is any independent  scientific evidence backing those claims 🙂

  • Reducing  skin oiliness and associated acne

Acne is a complicated issue since the cause of acne cannot be narrowed down to a single factor. Many people who have oily skin (excessive production of sebum which is the natural oil secreted by our body) are prone to acne attacks. It has been shown that Argan oil can help combat excessive oiliness of the skin and this in turn can help reduce acne breakouts. The study published a while ago shows that there was a reduction in the oiliness of facial skin after 4 weeks of applying an argan oil based face cream (Journal of clinical dermatology).

  • Hyperpigmentation/sun damage

Argan oil has been used for centuries by Moroccan women for skin lightening and to treat chicken pox scars. This has led some manufacturers to claim that Argan oil helps deal with pigmentation spots. Hyperpigmentation primarily occurs when there is an increase in the activity of  enzymes responsible for melanin production due to triggering factors such as ultraviolet light or prolonged exposure to to the sun. A study was done on the effect of Argan oil on skin depigmentation where they concluded that the overall skin depigmenting effect was due to the inhibition of melanogenic enzymes expressions attributed to the main components (tocopherols) and/or the synergistic effect of all the argan oil components (Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine ).

  • Hydrating dry skin

There are no studies which demonstrate this…however considering the fact that argan oil is very rich in vitamin E and fatty acids like linolic acid, I am tempted to say yup its got to be hydrating! Check out my post on skin hydration for more information.

  •  Anti aging and anti wrinkle properties

Now, there haven’t been any studies which demonstrate the anti aging properties of Argan oil atleast to my knowledge ,so do take it with a pinch of salt when companies claim that their products are anti aging solely due to the addition of argan oil in their creams or serums. I do have to point out that most of the research  on argan oil is focused more on the benefits it has on the human diet than as a cosmetic ingredient so hopefully someone will soon publish some data either proving or disproving its supposedly  anti aging properties 🙂 As you maybe aware, one of the best ways to prevent premature aging is to keep your skin hydrated, so in a way slowing  aging can be tied to its ability to moisturize the skin.

Argan oil in haircare

Unfortunately there are no peer reviewed studies showing the benefits of using argan oil on the hair. Again at max we can speculate that hair does get shiny when we use argan oil (the pure one) due to the high concentration of fatty acids and vitamin E which coats the hair and imparts a shine. Alot of the hair care products in the market which have argan oil in them also contain other ingredients like silicones in large amounts which  help control frizz so keep in mind that its not the Argan oil doing the work in such products!  Also there are no studies which show that Argan oil can promote hair growth or help with hair loss so don’t fall for that one!

 

Like I mentioned, most of the peer reviewed studies on Argan oil have been on its nutritive benefits rather than cosmetic uses. Hopefully, the current boom in the beauty market for argan oil based products will push the scientific community to study the cosmetic benefits of this oil in more detail ! Considering how expensive pure argan oil is many of us are tempted to go after cheaper versions we see online..a word of caution when purchasing from shady sources online..argan oil can be easily diluted or adulterated with vegetable oil, so if you do plan to try this out do your homework 🙂

Till next time ciao!