2017 was an amazing year for green beauty. Green brands became more popular than ever, and it stopped being a niche segment of the beauty industry. Mainstream bloggers began promoting smaller indie brands alongside big names like Estee Lauder and L’Oreal. Big department stores like Neiman Marcus started recognising the potential of green brands and collaborated with indie brands to curate personalised selections.
From a green beauty perspective, the biggest trend was a welcome shift away from face oils. 2016 was the year of face oils; and it was amazing to see green beauty brands expand their offerings in 2017 to include more hydrating products. In fact, I’d call 2017 the year of the hydrating serum because they were everywhere! Brands, beauty stores and influencers began waxing lyrical about the benefits of hydration (and how it differed from ‘moisture’), and it became one of the hottest beauty topics on Instagram!
Below, I’ve selected my top picks of 2017. While some of them were released in 2017, a number of them were selected because I discovered these new-to-me products in 2017.
Best Oil/Balm/First Cleanser: Discovering In Fiore was one of the biggest highlights of my year, and In Fiore Lustra Illuminating Cleansing Essence is one of my favourites from the line. This rich, non-emulsifying oil cleanser has the perfect slip and the most decadent aroma of freshly-picked jasmine. It is the perfect way to get your zen on after a long day. My favourite balm cleanser was Pitta Deep Cleanser from Aika Wellness. This unique Ayurvedic formula combines pink clay with exotic oils and extracts to deep cleanse the skin without stripping it. Another cleanser I discovered in 2017 (it has been around for a long time, though) was MV Skincare Gentle Cream Cleanser. A gentle cleanser that will suit the most fragile skin types, it removes dirt and makeup while leaving the skin soft and hydrated.
Best Day/Second Cleanser: I am always running late for work in the mornings, and I really don’t have the time to use an oil cleanser during the day. I prefer to use a water-soluble cleanser I can use in the shower instead. One of my most-used cleansers this year was Marshmallow Suds Face Cleanser from Earthwise Beauty. It foams gently and cleanses well without upsetting the pH balance of the skin. It has a unique scent that takes some getting used to (I compared it to ‘buttered lobster’ in my review), but it really is an outstanding green cleanser for all skin types.
Best Face Mist: Minimalism is a virtue in my book, and La Bella Figura’s Barbary Fig Flower Hydrosol is a shining example of a simple thing done well. Containing just barbary fig flower water and orange blossom extract, this refreshing mist hydrates and comforts the skin without any heaviness or stickiness. Love it.
Best Hydrating Serum: As I mentioned at the start of this post, 2017 has been the year of the hydrating serum, and it was hard to pick a favourite. I finally chose Earthwise Beauty’s Nap In The Meadow because it works for all skin types and offers a plethora of skincare benefits (helps with acne, pigmentation, small lines and inflammation) in addition to hydrating the skin.
Best Treatment Serum: African Botanics launched a number of new products in 2017. One of my favourites was the Nutritive Molecule Serum a.k.a. the best Vitamin C serum on the market (in my opinion). Containing 3 types of Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Ferulic Acid, Tannic Acid, Niacinamide, Superoxide Dismutase, Resveratrol, Green Coffee and Yeast, this lightweight antioxidant serum brightens and revives the skin unlike any other serum I’ve used.
Best Face Oil(s): Julie Elliott of In Fiore is the undisputed queen of facial oils, and it’s no surprise that my two favourite face oils of the year were created/co-created by her. Vintner’s Daughter is one of the most popular face oils on the market, and it really is a good investment because it suits all skin types and addresses a variety of skin issues. Another favourite of mine was In Fiore Comfrey Solution Botanique. This active, strong-smelling face and body oil may not be for the faint-hearted, but it visibly transforms the tone and texture of the skin.
Best Face Balm: If you haven’t noticed it already, Earthwise Beauty products really work for my skin type, and I just can’t get enough of their unique creations. A 2017 launch, Tigress Face Balm is one of the only balms that works for my acne-prone skin. It treats inflammation as it soothes and nourishes the skin. Love it.
Best Face Cream: The Rolls-Royce of face creams, African Botanics Fleurs d’Afrique Intensive Recovery Cream is the most luxurious face cream I’ve used. Light yet thoroughly nourishing, this soft cream leaves a velvety finish while repairing and rejuvenating the skin. The cool jasmine scent of the cream is absolutely addictive, as well.
Best Sunscreen: My most-used sunscreen this year was Julisis Sun Emulsion SPF 30. An ultra-light fluid, this feels more like moisturizer than sunscreen. I’ve recommended it to friends and family, who have all loved it (and preferred it to mainstream SPFs). It offers fantastic sun protection without leaving a white cast or residue.
Best Eye Product(s): My favourite eye serum of 2017 was In Fiore’s newly launched Source D’Eclat Eye Serum Concentre. Lightweight and cooling, this hydrating serum reduces puffiness and diminishes fine lines with one easy swipe. My favourite eye oil was another roller-ball product, the Decouverte Under Eye Repair Serum from La Bella Figura. This nourishing oil with active ingredients illuminates the under eye area and reduces dark circles.
Best Powder Mask(s): A 2017 discovery, Ranavat Botanics Eternal Reign Detoxifying Masque is an Ayurveda-inspired formula containing manuka honey powder and clays, along with neem, gotu kola, moringa and Vitamin C. It rinses off easy (it rolls off the skin) and leaves my skin looking fresh and luminous. Another favourite this year was Live Native’s Botanic Earth Mud Mask. It smells like chocolate chip cookies and contains an extraordinary list of ingredients (including 23K gold flakes), and I love it!
Best Hydrating Mask: One of the most popular launches of 2017, Josh Rosebrook’s Advanced Hydration Mask sold out in hours and (almost) broke Instagram! This soothing blue mask is unlike any other hydrating product on the market and is a must-have for dry, dehydrated skin.
Best Body Oil(s): One of the lightest body oils I’ve tried, Mun’s Ayour Body Toning Serum smells spa-like and tightens the skin as it hydrates. Mukti Organics Bioactive Body Elixir has face oil-grade ingredients that brighten and rejuvenate the skin. Love both oils.
Best Fragrance: Quality ‘green’ fragrances are hard to find, and I never thought my favourite scent of the year would be a solid perfume. Combining jasmine with grassy vetiver and smoky frankincense, In Fiore Vetiver Sambac Parfum Solide Haute Concentre is lush and transformative.
Best Home Fragrance: I know I’m biased, but I had the exceptional opportunity to release my own home fragrances this year with Australian organic brand Be Genki. The great thing about this collaboration was that I got to make the home scents of my dreams exactly the way I wanted. 100% natural and ‘clean,’ these scents have been keeping me calm and centred. You are welcome to support my first-ever beauty endeavour by purchasing Arjun for Be Genki Moonlight & Daylight here. They ship worldwide and 5% of the profits will be donated to Earthcare St Kilda, an eco-conservation charity.
Best Toothpaste: I discovered David’s Toothpaste this year, and it has been a game changer. It definitely is the best ‘green’ toothpaste I’ve used!
Best Hand Cream: It’s hard to find a good hand cream that nourishes the skin without leaving a sticky residue. My go-to this year has been Hand Rescue Cream from MV Organics. It moisturises well without any tackiness.
Final Thoughts: I feel so fortunate to have discovered so many great brands and products this year. While it has been a great year for face products, I didn’t have much luck with body and hair products. Most of the body washes and soaps I tried this year were just average, and I had some not-so-great experiences with new hair products.
Hope you all have a healthy, happy and prosperous new year. Comment below with your favourite products from 2017.
© 2017 JustAskArjun. All opinions/views are my own. I accept press samples for review consideration, however, all products are treated with the same level of scrutiny. This post contains affiliate links.