Funny how being ill can really give you the kick-up-the-arse needed to re-evaluate your lifestyle, eh? Having been pretty under-the-weather, to say the least, of late I’ve had to give my daily routine a bit of an overhaul, and turn to Mother Nature for some help.
I’ve swapped my infamous Beige Diet (read: chips, pies, burgers, anything from Greggs), for a healthier shade of green; switched vanilla lattes for peppermint tea; assumed the lotus position instead of the horizontal five-more-minutes-in-bed position, and generally put my yin back in touch with my yang.
As well as looking for homeopathic and herbal remedies, I’ve also turned to natural beauty products – mainly to avoid putting my body through more aggro with nasty chemicals but also because I find the all-natural smells so soothing and comforting, and really get the sense that I’m doing my body some good.
Yes, I know I could probably make my own natural beauty products at home, but I haven’t changed that much – I’m still a lazy bastard. So with that in mind, here are my seven favourite natural beauty products…
Balance Me Radiance Face Oil
Face oil can be a hard concept to get your head around, especially if your skin is greasier than a chip shop’s deep-fat fryer at the best of times. However, Balance Me’s Radiance Face Oil is brilliant. It’s 100% natural and literally seems to feed your skin. I’ve been applying the oil morning and night, before my mosituriser and my skin certainly isn’t as dull as it used to be.
The highly concentrated cocktail of conditioning and softening Amazonian buruti, moringa and camellia oils work together with soothing Roman chamomile, yarrow and benzoin to give your skin a Ready Brek glow. The oil is absorbed really quickly, giving your skin an intense shot of moisture, especially around those pesky areas prone to lining.
Balance Me Super Moisturising Hand Cream
While I’m on the Balance Me bandwagon (did I mention their products are all made in the UK?), this is another of theirs I’ve become slightly addicted to – I just can’t get enough of the smell of their Super Moisturising Hand Cream. Best of all, it does what it says on the
tin tube; it’s ultra moisturising but without leaving your hands covered in a weird slimy film, like you’ve been birthing a cow.
My description of the aroma mightn’t be that far off, as it goes. The product contains two ancient therapeutic skin conditioners, the Egyptians’ embalming agent benzoin, and yarrow, which legend says Achilles used on his wounded soldiers in the Trojan war. Plus, I love a birrov patchouli.
Note: A little goes a l-o-n-g way with this bad boy.
Aveda Stress Fix Body Lotion
Smells like… lavender and herb gardens
I can get pretty stressed out. That’s probably why my immune system is shot to bits, and one of the reasons I’m trying to get my yogi on.
So not only is this body lotion super moisturising, but the organic lavender, lavandin and clary sage aroma is clinically proven to relieve feelings of stress. Super! I like to sniff the product from my hands (seriously) before applying all over my bod; I no doubt look like a right ol’ loon, but the lovely lavender aroma does indeed make me feel instantly calmer. #Ommmmm
Temple Spa Breath of Life
Speaking of products I like to sniff (steady now, I said natural products…) this cheeky bottle of blended aromatherapy oils has been an absolute GOD SEND while I’ve been suffering with my stupid sinuses. Again, you could probably mix this up yourself, but I just can’t be arsed.
It’s marketed as a brain boost in a bottle, and I can vouch for that. It contains essential oils of eucalyptus and tea tree known for their powerful antibacterial and antiviral properties. Then there’s calming lavender and a hit of menthol to help you to bloody well breathe (always handy). In fact, I was introduced to this product at Alexander House Hotel’s Utopia Spa; you inhale the aroma from the therapists hands to relax you into the treatment.
The dinky little bottle is ideal for whacking in your handbag and taking a wee snifter when you’re out and about. Perhaps not on the train in rush hour. And if anyone overhears you sniffing in a toilet cubicle, you may well arouse suspicion. At night time I’ve added a few drops onto my pillow to help me snooze soundly.
L’Occitane Immortelle Brightening Moisturiser
The name of this L’occitane range makes me think of the HIT 90s song Celine Dion did with the Bee Gees. ANYWAY. For 43 sheets, you want to become bloody immortal with this cream. But needless to say, I’m impressed with it, else it wouldn’t feature here.
Immortelle is actually the name of the essential oil used; known as the everlasting flower cos they retain their form, fragrance and colour when dried. So this product is ace for anti-aging. The Immortelle essential oil stimulates collagen production, and the Bellis Perrenis and Vitamin C reduce the appearance of age spots. Oh, and garden Nasturtium gives an all-round youthful glow. I’ve been slapping it on morning and night and have really noticed an improvement in my skin tone.
Ruby Red Reviving Body Cleanser
Another all-natural Brit brand, Ruby Red have recently overhauled their packaging and product offer – and created one of my new beauty faves in the process.
Their Reviving Body Cleanser isn’t exactly a shower gel, but a natural cleaning agent, if you see worra mean. Coconut and corn create the foaming effect and Aloe Vera Leaf extract soothes away dryness. Then the energising oils of Key Lime and Red madarin kick in, crushed with Coriander and wild Cedarwood (mmm, Cedarwood!) for a rich, invigorating aroma. Deeee-lish.
Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser
I know Liz Earle’s Cleanse & Polish isn’t exactly a ground-breaking new discovery by any means, but I’ve only just introduced it into my daily skincare routine. I wanted to stop using face wipes to remove my makeup of an evening. Sure, they’re oh-so handy to simply remove your slap in a swipe BUT they’re also oh-so bad for your skin. You might as well use Dettol on your face (DON’T do that. It’ll sting).
Anyway, I didn’t realise you could use this product ALL over your face, and get right into the corners of your eyes and that to shift even the most stubborn mascara. But you can!
And besides that, it’s sooo good for your skin, with cocoa butter, beeswax and Vit B5 plus I heart the uplifting eucalyptus smell. I’m not going to add to the eleventy zillions reviews of this product already out there on the interwebs, but I WILL say this: JUST BUY IT ALREADY. It’ll change your life. Or at least your skin.
Got any natural beauty products you’d care to share? Let us know in the comments below!