Bodycare for the Almost Vegetarian: Five fascinating lines and a contest to win for FREE!

I looked at all sorts of natural bodycare products. Some had pretty unattractive packaging. Some I can't live without. Some are, well, almost magic.

You'll see what I mean.

(Oh, and don't forget, the contest is coming. Soon. Very, very soon.)

The fun goes on!

Convenient clean
In the EO line, I managed to find a product so good that, once I lost it, I had to rush right out to buy another. This is the product:

Hand Sanitizer
The hand sanitizer is perfect for cleaning and disinfecting hands without soap and water. And, even better, the 2 ounce size slips neatly into your purse, and is small enough that it is allowed on an airplane, which is exactly where I tried it.

Here are the first three ingredients in the lavender version (okay, I adore lavender, if you haven't figured it out by now!): Organic Alcohol (non-GMO), Purified Water, Vegetable Glycerin. The lavender comes next on the list, which isn't ideal, but it's not bad at all, especially considering how some of the other products we've looked at take their name from a product which is near the end of a lengthy ingredient list.

You just squirt a bit of this gel into your palms and rub until they are dry. The scent was mild enough not to disturb other passengers, and it left my hands feeling clean and soft. But if you don’t like scent, it also comes scent-free.

Hand cream
While we are talking about hands, let’s look at the EO hand cream.

This comes in three scents: french lavender, lemon verbena, and jasmine. I tried two of them: lemon verbena and jasmine. All had lengthy ingredient lists with their fair share of tongue-twisting ingredients. For example, the
first three ingredients for the lemon version are EO Organic Herbal Blend [Purified Water, Organic Chamomile (Matricaria Recutita), and Organic Aloe Vera (Aloe Barbadensis). Some of the tongue-twisters are Hydroxyethylcellulose, Dimethicone, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Capryloyl Glycine.

The lemon smelled like the type of lemon candy you got as a kid: Invasive, persistent, and overwhelming. Hours later I would catch a whiff of my hand and rush to wash it off.

So you would think I hated the jasmine, too. But I didn't. Not at all.

In fact, I like it to much that every so often, when no one is looking, I'll subtly sniff my hand. It smells light and sweet and great.

Michelle, ma belle
Actually, the line is spelled MyChelle. And while they had some of the least inspired packaging (think plain white containers with labels slapped on), their kits were just jam-packed with all sorts of products to try.

And I love trying products.

MyChelle Sampler Pack
A particularly good starting point for anyone who wants to get a nice feel for the line, the sampler pack has tiny sizes of everything from cleansers (including the Cranberry Cleanser and the Honeydew Cleanser) and serums (from the Clear Skin Serum to the Ultra Hyaluronic Hydrating Serum) to creams (such as the Deep Repair Cream and the Fabulous Eye Cream), peels (the Fruit Fiesta Peel and the Incredible Pumpkin Peel), masks (Blueberry Antioxidant Mask and Cranberry Mud Mask), and more!

This is way, way too much for me to discuss, so let’s just look at one item, the Blueberry Antioxidant Mask.

Designed to fight free radical damaged, stressed skin, the first three ingredients in this antioxidant hydrating mask are aqua (once again, your money is buying more water than any other ingredient), blueberry pulp (woo hoo! we love seeing the key ingredient near the top of the list), and caprylic/capric triglycerides.

They suggest using it twice a week and say it is also a great moisturizing treatment for hands and feet. I never did try it on my hands or feet, but I did try it on my face where it was soothing and lovely.

All In One Packs
MyChelle also sells three all-in-one packs: One for normal skin, one for dry / mature, and a third for oily / acne. These are a pretty good option if you want to try face products specific for your skin type. So let’s look at one of the packs.

The all-in-one pack for the normal skin type has a large size Fruit Enzyme Mist and small size Fruit Enzyme Cleanser, Honeydew Cleanser, Pumpkin Renew Cream, Fruit Fiesta Peel, Fruit Enzyme Scrub, Sun Shield SPF 30, The Perfect C Serum, Serious Hyaluronic Firming Serum, Fabulous Eye Cream, Incredible Pumpkin Peel.

Of these, the most interesting item was the Fruit Enzyme Mist.

Now, the first three ingredients in this hydrating, anti-inflammatory toner are aqua: distilled water (yep, we're still buying more water than any other ingredient), hamamelis, and glycerin (the fruit shows up at number five on the list, making it somewhat reasonably close to the top).

I took it with me on my flight. And on that dry, dry plane, all it took was one good misting to make my skin feel just wonderful.

Unfortunately, all it took was one good misting to make my husband lean as far away from me as possible. Which wasn't nearly enough for him given the ridiculously insane, back-achingly, money-grabbingly tiny amount of room alloted to each passenger on that Virgin America flight.

Yes, the mist worked like a dream. But, alas, yes, the too sweet scent was pretty powerful. Certainly far too powerful for that horribly tiny space. So I didn’t use it on the return flight. But if I were to ever find myself in the great outdoors and in need of a misting, this is what I would use. Just as long as my husband was not around.

Z is for Zia
Speaking of kits, we have not forgotten our fine, male friends, fathers, sons, and husbands. It is for them that we have looked at a kit from Zia Natural Skincare for men.

Designed for men with sensitive or dry skin that is prone to razor burn, the Men’s Soothing Travel Kit comes with travel sizes of five products: HydraClean Face Wash, HydraShield Shave Cream, Dual Action Face Lotion, Triple Action Wash, Triple Protection Lotion SPF 15. It also comes with a black and orange pouch to hold the products (fine if you are travelling by land or sea, but quite useless if you are traveling by air because airport security rules, at least at the time of writing, insist that all products of this sort be packed in a quart size zip lock plastic bag much like the one that comes with the MyChelle travel kits).

As usual, let’s look at one product. In this case, let’s look at a product we haven’t looked at before, the shaving cream.

The HydraShield Shave Cream is supposed to deliver a clean, close shave without razor burn or irritation. The first three ingredients here are Aqueous Infusion of Fucus Vesiculosis (Seaweed) Extract, Sodium Cocoyl Isothionate, and Stearic Acid. Some of the more complex ingredients include Decyl Glucoside, Tetrasodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol (&) Methylparaben (&) Isopropylparaben (&) Isobutylparaben.

So how does it work? I gave it to the shaving expert in our house: My husband. Now, this has no strong scent, so I knew we were safe on that count. But, as for the rest of it, I had to wait for him to finish his shower.

I waited. And waited. And waited. (He is the only male I know whose showers are longer than mine.)

And then he came out.
“Well? Well! What do you think? Did you like it? How did it work?”

“It was runny.”

“It was runny? Runny!”

“Runny. I don’t like it.”

That was one mans’ opinion (remember, your opinion might be quite different).

Just a little magic
Finally, we have Egyptian Magic.

I love Egyptian Magic because it is, well, just so delightful. Delightful in the same way that horse shampoo was delightful. You know what I mean? Sort of silly and amusing and sweet.

And this stuff isn’t bad. Not bad at all.

First, let me give you a taste from the Website. This is from the About Us section:
Peace and Many Blessings unto You:
My name is Lord-Pharaoh ImHotep-AmonRa, CEO, founder and manufacturer of the Egyptian Magic All-Purpose Skin Cream "The People's Choice," and I AM HUMBLED AND HONORED TO BE OF SERVICE TO YOU.

Egyptian Magic All-Purpose Skin Cream "The People's Choice" is new to your market. It is a phenomenal healing balm with legendary powers due to its unique mixture of all natural ingredients derived only from living plants and organisms.

Okay, see what I mean about totally charming (really; I’m not being sarcastic)?

But, being a good almost vegetarian, I head straight for the only thing that counts: the ingredient list. And, hey, the news is okay. This is what is in this stuff: olive oil, bees wax, honey, bee pollen, royal jelly, bee propolis.”

That’s actually pretty good. Nothing to worry about here. And I can pronounce it all!

So how does it work? Well, for starters, there is no scent. That’s a nice change from some of the other skin care products we’ve been looking at this week and last, some of which had scents that took quite a bit of getting used to. But it is a shame; I was hoping for a nice, light honey smell.

Now, because this stuff is a solid, you can’t just squirt it out of a tube. No, what you have to do is scoop some out of the jar (I ran the outside tip of my thumb nail across the top of the product), deposit it into your hand, then rub until it liquefies (this only takes seconds). Then you simply apply it where you want it.

It did amazing things to my elbows. I mean, think soft.

Now, you don’t want to leave this on your hands and try to type, because unless you are really judicious, this stuff tends to leave your hands a bit slick. But at bedtime, hands, feet, elbows, and anything else that needs some moisture is fair game.

Two last things you should know. First, the jar isn’t much to look at. So this is one for the bedside drawer. And, second, there is a generous amount of Egyptian Magic packed into this oversized jar. So you’ll not be looking at it for a long, long time!

This week. I’ll announce it. I promise! And it is incredibly easy to enter.

And Happy Chanukah everybody! May your latkes be crisp and your meal vegetarian!