Bath & Body
If there’s one thing to know about me, it’s that I love a good body scrub. Nothing makes me feel cleaner (especially after the gym) than a nice long exfoliation session in the shower. It always leaves my skin super soft and glowy and there’s just something so satisfying about the process. My new scrub obsession is Farmhouse Fresh’s Coconut Beach Body Scrub. I’ve never tried a Farmhouse Fresh product that I didn’t love and this one only extends the streak. It smells ah-mazing – the pineapple-coconut scent immediately takes me to a tropical island right in my own bathroom (at least until I get out and remember that I have to make my own bed!) I like that it gets all the dry skin off without being harsh and thanks to the shea butter and coconut water, I don’t feel like I’ve stripped my body of any moisture after I’ve used it. It’s also 90% natural, which is great if you’re trying to cut down on the chemicals that you put on your body, and best of all, it comes in a plastic jar. If you’re not a klutz like me, this may not seem like a big deal to you, but plastic doesn’t shatter (very important when you’re handling slippery products) and it also won’t hurt nearly as much if you drop it on your foot. (If I could only count the times I’ve done that…) Love this one!
Once in blue moon, a product comes up which is the proverbial holy grail — an answer to a plethora of beauty issues (think Windex from “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”). Aden+Anais’ Soothing Ointment is just that, ready to tackle your super-dry skin patches, chapped lips, and even insect bites! But before we go any further, consider yourself warned: this ointment is not for the faint of heart. It’s thick, tacky, and so pleasingly salubrious! The ointment is 50% fresh fermented paw paw fruit, which is nature’s answer to our skin dilemmas. Never heard of paw paw fuit? Well, I hadn’t either so I dug around a bit to find out what the big deal was. Turns out, it’s a type of papaya which has been getting a lot of attention lately because it’s high in antioxidants and has a whole list of health benefits. Australians have long hailed the fruit for its ability to protect and relieve skin ailments. Ellen Gendler, M.D., a leading New York City dermatologist who specializes in cosmetic contact dermatitis, helped develop this ointment, so this formulation is the best of the best. (more…)
Dreaming of spring yet with all this mopey cold and wet winter weather? Now that the winter sales frenzy has passed, training for spring wardrobes commences! No, I’m not talking about hitting the gym or juice-cleansing, but rather getting those feet pampered and refreshed and ready for sandals. Elemis’ Treat Your Feet foot cream is the best I’ve ever encountered, hands down. So many creams claim to be rich and potent enough (trust me, I’ve been around the block looking for a good one), but to get my crackly heels in buttery soft condition, it takes something almost nuclear. This emulsion of shea butter and jojoba oil is intensely moisturizing and just melts into your skin and it passes my usual tests of screening out the bad stuff: it’s free from parabens, SLS, SLES, DEA, mineral oils, artificial colors and silicones.
The texture of this foot butter is luxurious, without any heaviness or greasiness, and it smells fabulous: think aromatic patchouli, eucalyptus, and lemon oils. Just generously apply a layer before bed, slip on some warm comfy socks, and in the morning, say hello to your new soft soles! Here’s a little secret — I put a coating on my hands before bed as well, and am treated to rejuvenated skin in the morning. With Elemis, you really can have a “spa at home,” every night. Light a candle, put on some music, and massage away (better yet, have someone do it for you!).
There’s nothing I hate more than being greasy or dirty, so for the longest time, I avoided trying Josie Maran’s Argan Oil, even though I’d heard nothing but great things about it. I was afraid that if I used it, it would make me feel oily or it wouldn’t soak in and I would have to shower again (or wind up looking like I hadn’t showered at all). Well I finally gave in and got a bottle of it to try… and I was so, so wrong. You guys, it’s fantastic! The older I get, the more I appreciate multi-purpose products and this is so that. You can use it in a myriad of different ways, including as your daily face moisturizer, in your hair to treat split ends, on your nails to soften your cuticles, on rough patches of skin on your body (like your elbows or knees), or even as a bath oil in the tub. I’ve done all of those now except used it in a bath and I’m kind of obsessed with it.
The product itself is a 100% pure Argan Oil that’s grown organically in Morocco. It’s cold pressed to make sure that it’s the best quality, highest-grade oil, and it comes in a recyclable glass bottle that was purchased from women’s cooperatives in Morocco to help support their social and economic welfare. Kinda cool, right? And I love that it dispenses the oil from a dropper – it makes it easy not to use too much at once and waste it. It’s just a super moisturizing product that absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave any greasiness afterwards – perfect to use on the go or at night when it has even more time to sink in and do its job. I just love the way it leaves my skin looking. If only I’d tried it sooner!
Have you ever dreamed of rolling around in a vat of frothy whipped cream (no, not in that way)? I for one love anything light and fluffy whether it’s a souffle or cream cheese and can’t get enough of L’Occitane’s just released Shea Butter Honey Whipped Body Cream! This is one of those creams that make you wonder how you lived before because now you can’t imagine another day without it. I feel decadent every time I lather it on — it’s so light but incredibly moisturizing and because it’s based in natural ingredients, I don’t have to worry about reactions or side-effects of those complicated chemicals. Also, my winter skin just drinks up that 10% shea butter. But the best part is — instead of feeling heavy and greasy, the cream is soft, delicate, airy and absorbs oh-so-well. The honey component is genius: since it’s a natural humectant, it draws and binds water from the air into your skin. The light lingering scent is lovely and despite being sensitive to perfumes, I found this so natural and even comforting. Oh and I adore the packaging, especially that cute little bear on the top! (more…)
The word “girl crush” has become massively overused, but I can’t think of a better word to describe Chrissy Teigen, foodie, laugh-out-loud hilarious, beautiful model, and bulldog-lover. Her Twitter is a daily joyful read for me and her relationship with John Legend is the stuff cuteness is made out of. Most importantly–I trust her picks, whether they be for the best ramen in Japan (yea, she’s cool like that), a stellar recipe for eggs in ham cups (changed my breakfast game forever), life changing Google searches (Google “Tom Brady water slide” and you’ll see what I mean), and now: my new favorite razor. Leave it to this culinary school talent to discover a smooth razor that also smells like Creme Brulee: the Olay Gillette Venus razor. With 5 blades surrounded by two solid conditioning Olay moisturizing bars that negate the need for shaving cream, this is the kind of razor your significant other is going to want to steal. The Olay bars work in tandem with the water from your shower to moisturize your skin for a close shave. And the flexible head that you can bend to-and-from, is just right for getting into every nook and cranny. So crush on with Chrissy and the Olay Gillette Venus razor.
I buy so many “big” name brand makeup and body care items that one of my favorite things is when I can discover a smaller, more indie brand that isn’t in every single store yet. It feels like a great achievement, like I’m in on a secret that the rest of the world doesn’t know yet. (Plus, it always feels good supporting smaller businesses). My newest band obsession is S.W. Basics of Brooklyn. All of their products are made in small batches by actual people (imagine that!) in Brooklyn and they’re ethically sourced with holistic ingredients. It’s so nice to know that what you’re putting on your body doesn’t have any chemical or “bad” ingredients. As the company says, their products are “super-simple, pared down blends of the absolutely essential ingredients needed for effective, truly all-natural skincare.” (more…)
Sometimes you just don’t want to listen to well-meaning advice. Whether it be from your mom (“don’t date that boy!” “don’t major in English!”), your friends (“don’t date that boy!”) or your dad (“eh dating that boy won’t last anyway so do what you want to do” “you should really be socking away 30% into your 401k for tax purposes,”) sometimes solid advice, for whatever reason, elicits a ‘meh’ reaction. That was kind of the feeling I had about body moisturizers. It’s not that I want to have flaky, lizard skin. It’s more that I thought I was already covering my moisturizing bases, with bath oils, body scrubs, and other moisturizing, soapy products.
Well, it turns out I’d been hitting moisturizing singles and hoping they would make it to doubles or triples. But that has just not cutting it, with this season’s winter, balmy weather (insert appropriate baseball analogy here, as I got nothing.) But Kiehl’s Limited Edition Soy Milk and Honey Whipped Body Butter is helping me to achieve that elusive moisturizing homer, with a product that smells so luscious and scrumptious, that I slather it over my body without abandon. Erring on the sweet side, without being sickly, their body butter has the texture of a light, non-sticky frosting that melts and sinks deep into your thirsty pores. The fragrance does that hard-to-pull-off thing of reminding you of a dessert, without actually ever resembling one, so you never get that, “Why do I smell like a cupcake”-post-moisturizer regret. In collaboration with pop artist, Kenny Scharf who designed the Globo Mundo label, Kiehl’s is donating 100% of the net profits to charity RxArt, a non-profit that supports the arts in pediatric hospitals. So, batter up.
I don’t know about you but when my skin starts getting dry, tight, and itchy (aka winter time), I crave a no-frills, no-fragrance, serious moisturizer. All those fancy body souffles and designer lotions stop doing it for me when I find that they just don’t provide enough hydration during these colder months. And on top of that, often the fragrance starts to irritate my already sensitive skin. So the other day, I cleared out my vanity and dug deep into my beauty closet until I came across the body lotion sporting the most no-nonsense packaging I could find and decided to give it a try. Yes, I totally judged a product by its cover, but luckily the Atopalm Lotion that I found was exactly what I needed.
Atopalm’s Moisturizing Body Lotion is formulated with the company’s patented Mutli Lamellar Emulsion technology which mimics the structure of your skin’s own lipids to help restore the barrier system that locks in moisture. In addition to helping heal the skin, the product also includes traditional moisturizing agents such as grape seed oil and hyaluronic acid along with antioxidants and Allantoin for extra soothing. The lotion is light to medium in weight and absorbs very quickly without leaving any greasiness. Best of all, it provides immediate and long lasting relief, leaving me feeling nourished and comfortable in my own skin. High recommended for the colder months! $30 at Target.