May Lindstrom Clean DirtI grew up in Kerala, India, where most skincare rituals are homemade. Most women (and men) massage their face with coconut oil before a bath and rinse it off with a paste of chickpea flour and water (the double cleansing trend started centuries ago!). The oil melts impurities, while the chickpea flour ubtan (the Ayurvedic term for cleanser/mask that you make by mixing a dry ingredient with water to form a paste) offers gentle exfoliation without upsetting the skin’s acid mantle. As a teen with bad skin, I was often asked to follow this double cleansing regime, but I wanted the latest foaming cleanser that left my skin squeaky clean and made it smell like a fruit or flower that didn’t exist in nature.

I am reminded of these ubtans when I use May Lindstrom’s Clean Dirt. Unlike the humble chickpea ubtan, this powder cleanser smells like vanilla and spices and turns into an airy mousse when you mix it with water. It’s an ubtan executed in the most luxe way imaginable. View Post

pixie glow tonicMany beauty bloggers push exfoliating toners, and Pixi Glow Tonic is one of the most affordable and popular options in the beauty blogging world (at least here in Australia and the UK). UK-based blogger Caroline Hirons (who is also part of multiple ongoing projects with the brand) endorses it and rates it highly, and many of her fans have jumped on the Glow Tonic bandwagon. I love Caroline Hirons and her blog, but I really regret using/buying this product.

I bought it online a couple of months ago just to see what the hype was all about (and also because I needed to add something relatively cheap to my cart to get free shipping), After receiving it, I tested it on the back of my hand and left it there. To be honest, I didn’t even pay attention to the ingredients (I knew it had 5% glycolic acid) because I didn’t think I’d ever use it on my face (the tiny gold print on pale green didn’t make things any easier, either). It sat on my bathroom counter gathering dust, until about three weeks ago, when a very persuasive friend told me I needed something strong — like Alpha H or Glow Tonic — to take my skincare to the next level. That night, after cleansing, when I was wondering which toner to use, I thought I’d give Glow Tonic a go. Surely, testing it once couldn’t possibly ruin my skin. View Post

Agent Nateur SchmidtI could go on and on about why it’s a good idea to switch to a natural deodorant, but I’m sure almost anyone who is on this page is already aware of the dangers of using aluminium-based deodorants. However, if this is the first time you’re hearing about this, please click here for more information on this topic.

Personally,  despite the risk, I’ve always used regular deodorants just because I couldn’t find anything that really worked. My rationale was that it was better to live a shorter, happier life than a long one where people didn’t want to come close to you. But after discovering natural deodorants that are just as effective as those loaded with aluminum, I’m starting to realise it is possible to have the cake and eat it, too. View Post

Omorovicza 2This is my first time reviewing skincare designed especially for men. The product I’m reviewing is a shave cream for men from the luxe Hungarian spa brand Omorovicza. I’ve been following Omorovicza for the last couple of years, but this is the first time I’ve actually bought one of their products. Their cult Thermal Cleansing Balm has been on my wish list for a long time, but I just can’t justify spending so much on a cleanser when there are so many others that do the job (albeit, possibly, in a less luxurious way) for a fraction of the price. I think I may be sold if I actually try it on in store and experience its opulence firsthand, but I haven’t got around to trying it at Mecca Cosmetica as yet. The Soothing Shave, fortunately, is MUCH cheaper than most Omorovicza products — in fact, at around $35 AUD it may even be their most affordable product. View Post

Samples
I have a long history of not testing the samples that come with my skincare orders. Usually, I put them away in boxes and forget all about them. Recently, when I received a whole bunch of samples from very generous online retailers (I Am Natural Store and Be Naturally You, extra-special shout outs to you!), I decided to make an effort to try them straightaway. Here are my mini reviews based on my first impressions:

Rahua

Shampoo: Brilliant shampoo, deserves all the praise it gets. It lathers a lot better than most natural shampoos. Has a unique (but pleasant) smell, which may take some getting used to.

Conditioner: I’ll definitely be buying a full bottle of this. It’s luscious, creamy, and coats hair very well for a natural conditioner. Leaves hair soft and healthy, without weighing it down. Love at first use! View Post