Skincare for the Almost Vegetarian: Three healthy skincare lines AND a free contest!

Yesterday we got some specific advice on some healthy skin care lines from an expert at Whole Foods and recommendations for some good lines to try.

Today, we are going to look at three health food store skin care lines: Naturopathica, Lavera, and Suki.

And, of course, don't forget the contest coming up where you can win all sorts of nice goodies!

Pretty in blue
Naturopathica, with its lovely silver and navy packaging, is one of the prettiest lines we will look at. But even better than pretty packaging, they have some really nice products that live up to the promise.

Treatment mask trio
I had mentioned yesterday that many of the health food store lines of skin, body, and hair care products have kits. These are great for those of us new to these types of lines because they give us a chance to try all sorts of products without paying full-size prices.

Now, one of the best kits I played around with was the treatment mask trio from Naturopathica.

The trio consists of three trial size masks. Here is what is in the kit:
  • Pumpkin Enzyme Peel. If you have troubled skin, this might be a good one to try. Loaded with super concentrated extracts of pumpkin - in fact, the first three ingredients are Cucurbita Pepo (Pumpkin) Seed Extract, Pumpkin Wine, Pumpkin Enzymes - it is created specifically for those with dull, congested, or acne-plagued skin (think blackheads and the such). The good news? It is perfect for anyone who wants smooth, clear, and glowing skin. The bad news? It smells so delicious you will crave pumpkin pie. I know. Because I do.
  • Environmental Defense Mask. Designed to soften the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, the first three ingredients here are Cherry Puree, L-lactic Acid, and Aqua (Water). It’s got that red wine / cherry smell, so it’s probably a good idea to have cherry pie and a bottle of wine in the house when you treat yourself (if anyone gives you a hard time, just tell ‘em your blogger said so).
  • Hydrating Antioxidant Mask. Designed for sun damaged, mature skin, this one has a significantly longer ingredient list than the other two products, starting with water, Prunus armeniaca (apricot) oil, cetearyl alcohol and cetearyl glucoside and ending with the tongue-twisting sodium hydroxymetyhylglycinate. Created to give us that smooth, hydrated skin we all want, this is the only one of the three that doesn’t have me reaching for something to eat. Thank heavens!
Crème de la crème
Many of the lines offer products for more than one part of the body. For example, Naturopathica also has a body cream: Crème de la crème. The number one ingredient here is water (meaning we are paying more for water than any other ingredient), followed by Carthamus tinctorius (safflower) oil, and emulsifying wax NF. It has a creamy texture, spreads easily, and left my skin baby smooth.

I won't grow up
Just because you're going natural with your skin care, doesn‘t mean you have to give up your anti-aging dreams. Because Lavera (as well as a few of the other lines) has anti-aging products just for you (yeah, you know who I mean!).

The good news here is that three of the anti-aging products are available in a starter set, so you can try them without the expense of buying full-size products.

But the bad news is I can't find a complete list of ingredients for any of the products on their Website. Now why is that? I certainly had no problem finding that they, like the D
r. Hauschka line, are " ... approved by the BDIH foundation ...," a foundation formed by a bunch of companies which, in turn, certifies themselves. A self-policing policy which, for me, carries a lot less credibility than third-party certification.

So, with this in mind, let's look at the products you get in the set:
  • Active Cleanser. Designed to cleanse and tone, this removes make-up, too, meaning no more fumbling with multiple cleansers, which is convenient.
  • Hydro Sensation Day & Night Cream. This is an interesting product. On one hand, it went on nice and light and was pretty moisturizing on my dry skin. Then it made my skin feel tight. Not the taut feeling you get when your skin is dry, but the tight feeling you get when it is pulled. That feeling, which was really quite mild, went away very quickly, leaving my skin nicely soft.
  • Body Lotion. They say this will stimulate and improve circulation to reduce cellulite and fortify connective tissue for a firming effect. It’s a four-week program, and as this sample size is only enough for about a week . . . well, I had no way of knowing if it would work! What I did note, however, is that they do suggest “ . . . regular exercise . . . ” to “ . . . increase firming effect . . . Now, wouldn’t exercise, even without the cream, do this any way? So, erm, is the cream needed, then?
  • And more! The kit also comes with a bunch of pillow packs (they look like miniature pillows - hence the name!) of Lifting Serum, Lip Expert, Ultimate Eye Cream, Repair Absolute, Special Effect Gel Mask and Teint Balance, so you get lots to play with.
Kits for days!
Another pretty line, Suki also offers kits so you can try a variety of products. Let's look at their mini skin care kit anti-inflammatory and mini skin care kit antioxidant.

Mini skin care kit anti-inflammatory
This vegan anti-inflammatory kit is for those with combination to oily skin or normal skin going through a blemishing phase. It comes with an exfoliating lemon grass cleanser, facial clay, concentrated facial toner-white willow, facial moisture serum-blue chamomile, velvet facial creme, delicate moisture body oil, hand & body velvet creme, & hand & body butter cream salve.

Of all these products, the most interesting is the facial clay. The first three ingredients here are infusion of organic rose petals, kaolin, and rice starch. But the real star of the show is the kaolin. Kaolin, which is the clay part of “facial clay,” draws impurities from the skin, which makes it great for removing blemishes and cleansing pores. And, best of all, it does so gently.

Mini skin care kit antioxidant
Designed for those with normal to dry, fragile, or combination skin in winter months or going through a dry phase, products in the antioxidant kit include an exfoliating lemon grass cleanser, moisture-rich cleansing lotion, concentrated facial toner-shiitake, facial moisture serum-carrot, complexion brightening cream, delicate moisture body oil, velvet hand & body creme, & hand & body butter creme salve.

I liked the body oil both for the wonderful texture and the soft results, but my husband recoiled from the scent. So that didn’t work well for me. But what did work well (wonderfully well) is the carrot facial moisture serum. Designed for mature, dry, sun damaged, or red skin and rosacea, this vegan serum hydrates without clogging. Interestingly, however, there are no carrots in the first few ingredients, the first three of which are organic jojoba oil infused with organic chamomile, echinacea, and borage. In fact, it is not until the seventh ingredient on the list that we see any mention of carrots, in this case, carrot seed. Still, I find it goes on like a dream, has a gentle scent, and gently calms my skin due, primarily, to the wonderful carrot oil. Ooops! This one fell into my purse. Ah well! I guess I’ll just have to leave it there.

Contest, contest, contest!
Yep! It’s coming! Your chance to sniff, slather, cream, dip, smear, and try all sorts of goodies. So stay tuned!