Sunday 20 September 2015

Botanicals | Orange Blossom body balm

Summer is pretty much over, even if you live by a different calendar, autumn equinox is just a few days away, and fall will be here in full force. It's not a secret that I love summer, this is the season when I feel like anything could happen, when I was younger it was a possibility of a new romance, now it's about enjoying all the beautiful colours that nature has to offer. I think most people in UK treasure sunny days, and no matter how short our summer season is, it's always special. Whenever I'm feeling nostalgic, I do tend to turn to spa type body products to bring back that feeling that I get from the warmer months.

Botanicals orange blossom body balm* is described as a conditioning and nourishing balm, that would help soften and enhance the texture of your skin. With that in mind, it has been recommended as a good body product to make your tan go a little longer. While it's been ages since I've had a tan ( with all the SPF that I use, I would need at least two weeks of being outside daily when it's sunny to get a tan), so I can't test this recomendation it per say, but logically it is perfectly reasonable. The top layer of our skin is dead, and you probably have experienced your tan almost rubbing off at one point or other, just your dead skin cells escaping away. So if you use a nourishing balm that will effectively keep this top layer from, for the lack of a better word, 'shedding' for a period of time, your tan would look better and naturally will stay intact for a little longer then it would have done by itself.

Taking all of the above into account, how did it perform?

Upon opening the jar I was surprised to find that the scent is not very strong, the white coloured balm appears completely solid (you could have the jar upside down, shake it and nothing would come out). As soon as you scoop some product out, you can see that it doesn't look all that solid at all, but more like it's been whipped into this consistency. It melts into skin, and the heat from the body immediately releases the essential oil scents hidden in the balm, all of a sudden it turns into a fragrant spa treat (which I would not have guessed by just sniffing at the contents of the jar). The scent is orange blossom, so even though some of the essential oils are citrus, overall it is not a sweet scent, I would say that neroli (bitter orange flower oil) is most definitely dominant, with a bit of a peppery undertone, probably from bergamot. It is a mood uplifting product from an aromatherapy perspective.

I find that it is definitely better to use this balm after a bath or shower, it absorbs so well and quickly, that when I use it on completely dry skin I use a lot more product. Also skin generally is a bit warmer after a date with hot water, and I feel this balm is at its best getting the most from your body heat. There is no residue left behind, I'm not spending ages rubbing this in or anything, it just sinks in so well. Skin feels seriously soft, like velvet (I am stroking my left arm as I'm typing this, I just used some on it to accurately describe the fragrance, I mean wow, so soft). The best thing about this product is that the effect actually lasts. I most often use body balms on my legs, as that's where I find my skin can get a bit dry from time to time (probably all the shaving etc), and when I use botanicals balm* my skin feels just as smooth at the end of the day as it did straight after applying. Overal I'm very impressed. There is no open jar symbol, only the use by date, which on my product is pretty long until 01/03/2017. I'm not sure if bergamot oil in this blend is bergaptene free or not, so I was generally using the product in the evenings or on days when my legs would be completely covered, so basically no sun exposure just in case.

Helianthus annus (sunflower) seed oil*, butyrospermum parkii (shea) butter*, simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) seed oil*, prunus armeniaca (apricot) kernel oil*, cetyl alcohol, cetearyl alcohol, glycerine***, tocopherol, citrus aurantium dulcis (orange) peel oil*, citrus aurantium bergamia (bergamot) fruit oil*, pogostemon cablin oil (patchouli oil)*, cananga odorata flower oil*, citrus aurantium amara (bitter orange) flower oil*, zea mays seed flour*, linalool**, limonene**, benzyl benzoate**, benzyl salicylate**. (*Certified organic. **Natural constituents of essential oils. ***Organic origin.)

This balm has 89% organic ingredients and is certified with Soil Association. The whole Botanicals range is SA certified, and they are signed up to support Campaign for Clarity. In honour of Organic September they are holding different special offers for each week of this month.

Did anything from botanicals range catch your eye? Have you tried orange blossom body balm? Let me know in the comments.

*PR sample, as always opinion is all my own and completely honest. I would never post a review that wasn't, it would defeat the purpose of this blog!

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