Carol's Daughter Body Butter. My Mother's Day Pick

groove_bb_mMother’s Day is rapidly approaching on Sunday and I wanted to post about a product that is affordable, easily accessible, and something that would make most moms feel special. My pick is Carol’s Daughter Body Butter ($18) and is available online and at most Sephora stores.

Carol’s Daughter Body Butter is filled with ingredients your skin craves to keep it soft and supple: shea butter, cocoa butter, jojoba oil and sweet almond oil. And what’s even more important, is what isn’t in the Body Butter. You won’t find petrochemicals, phthalates, parabens, or synthetic dyes. Carol’s Daughter does not claim to use 100% all-natural or organic ingredients, but again, we’re looking for a lower price point here and I am happy that no petrochemicals or phthalates are being used, at least in the Body Butter. You’ll want to be sure to read the labels of their other products if this is important to you. The consistency of Carol’s Daughter Body Butter is thick and balm-like, but warms readily and absorbs quickly. It’s super hydrating and feels luxurious as you massage it into your skin.

Finding a scent for the mom in your life can be challenging, but I say just go for it. With a body butter in general, she can use a little on her hands for a subtle scent, or go crazy and put it all over if she really falls head over heels with your choice. Carol’s Daughter gives you many to choose from. Love is laden with honey, cinnamon, and brown sugar. Ocean has rosemary, cyclamen and rose. Ecstasy is pineapple, white florals and musk. Almond Cookie is for the real sweet lover and has marzipan, tonka and vanilla orchid. Mango Melange is succulent fruit and coconut, and Jamaican Punch is Fuji apple, cinnamon and musk.

My favorite is Groove Body Butter. And groovy it is. There is nothing about the notes listed that say I should like this. Red currant and sugared dewberries (too sweet!), Tahitian vanilla and cocoa (that might be OK, but with that sweetness I was thinking too foody) and musk (dear gawd…..I cannot do musk). But somehow, it all works and I love it. The red currant tempers the whole deal and keeps its fruitiness just tart enough so the scales don’t get tipped too far into the cloying realm. And the vanilla and cocoa are not of the foody type, just the aromatic swoon-worthy variety. And the musk? What can I say….it’s one of those rare breeds that works for me. It’s not a clean musk, white musk or an “Egyptian” type musk. It’s a fruity musk I guess, a groovy musk.

All of these scents, Groove, Ocean, Mango Melange, etc. also come in other products like scrubs, oils and gels. So you could make your mama a lovely gift set and even mix and match the fragrances. So have at it and pick one up for yourself.

Carol’s Daughter is available at Sephora, their online store and their US stores.

Posted by ~Trish

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Pacifica Egyptian Bergamot Rose & French Lilac

 

Link to “Pacifica Update” post. Pacifica does indeed use synthetics, and is not transparent about that in their ingredient lists. Until they are, I cannot endorse their products. 

Pacifica has introduced Egyptian Bergamot Rose into its perfume and body butter line this spring. It has been a favorite scented soap and candle for years, but Pacifica’s perfumer and co-owner Brook Harvey-Taylor decided it was time to expand its horizons. Personally, I am glad she did because Egyptian Bergamot Rose is a lovely ambery floral fragrance that will appeal to the casual fragrance lover along with the devoted perfumista. For this review, I sampled the perfume solid which is incredibly convenient in its portability and price ($9), but is also available in the perfume spray ($22).

pacifica-roseEgyptian Bergamot Rose begins mildly herbal with a bright hit of bergamot. The citrusy freshness dissipates rather quickly and allows for a powdery, gentle spicy rose to move forward, but it’s all very subtle. The amber base settles in after an hour, but not like Spanish Amber. Egyptian Bergamot Rose is more floral and powdery, and it’s laced with a stronger hint of vanilla. The vanilla in Egyptian Bergamot Rose is not  particularly potent, but it has more of a presence than in Spanish Amber. I’d call this is a very pretty fragrance, and I don’t mean it diminutively or in a belittling way. Sometimes that is just what you want.

il_430xn296327521Another very pretty fragrance from Pacifica is their French Lilac. This is also a new offering in their solid perfume line, but previously existed only in the other forms (spray perfume, natural soap, body butter, and candles). For those of you who love lilacs, I cannot recommend this enough. I have this on right now, a few dabs from the perfume solid, and I feel like there is a bouquet of fresh lilacs in the room. It is that realistic. There’s not that much more to say about it. French Lilac smells like lilacs! I have never tried Pacifica’s natural soaps, but here is a rave review for the French Lilac soap. This is definitely going on my shopping list.

Pacifica is available at their websiteSephora, Whole Foods, and probably your local health food store.

Posted by ~Trish

Antony and Cleopatra by Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema 1883
Lilacs photograph by BroomhillPictures on Etsy.com

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Pacifica Update.

5937_heroUpdate: Overall, Pacifica is a good company, but they do use synthetics, and is not transparent about that in their ingredient lists. Until they are, I cannot endorse their products. 

After I posted my review of Pacifica’s Spanish Amber perfume, there was some concern in the comments about the use of synthetic ingredients in their formulations. I corresponded directly with owner Brook Harvey-Taylor and she clarified this issue. Pacifica’s products contain 85-95% naturally derived ingredients, with most products falling on the high end of this scale. And to be clear, their products (perfumes, lotions, washes, etc) do not contain petrochemicals, parabens, sulfates, synthetic dyes, phthalates, GMOs, or triclosan (an anti-bacterial derived from benzene). In addition, Pacifica adheres to the following practices:

•No animal testing or ingredients
•Manufactures in the USA
•Works with local suppliers
•Provides full health and dental benefits for all employees
•Provides full 401K and 125 savings for all employees

In the spirit of putting closure on this issue, I will not be opening this post up to comments. If you have any specific questions about my correspondence with Brook or have a question you would like me to ask her, please contact me at scenthive {at} gmail {dot} com.

Posted by ~Trish

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L’Artisan Verte Violette. For your reconsideration.

fairy-forest-violet3

 

There’s been a lot of talk about violet perfumes lately. Especially new and unusual ones like Comme des  Garsons + Stephen Jones, Frédéric Malle Dans Tes Bras, and The Unicorn Spell by Les Nez. But there is another violet to (re)consider, L’Artisan’s Verte Violette. Verte Violette has been around since 2000, but is an innovative and unique violet fragrance in its own right.

 

Initially, it is slightly reminiscent of the guerlinade base of Guerlain’s classics L’Heure Bleue and Mitsouko. Possibly from the way the green violet leaves create a crushed balsamy effect alongside the floral, powdery violet petals. But probably more so from the heliotrope, even though it is not listed on L’Artisan’s website scent description. Heliotrope’s almondy-vanilla aroma (some liken it to play-doh) is definitely mingling in the topnotes. Immediately this fragrance is both comforting and refreshing, like a sweet walk through a forest at dawn. Dabbing Verte Violette on your wrists and on the nape of your neck is akin to picking a nosegay of spring’s first violets and pressing their leaves between your fingers to release their dewy greenness.verte-violette

 

Once the heart of Verte Violette emerges, the heliotrope/vanillic scent becomes even more apparent. The sweetness is balanced nicely by a touch of iris soapiness and just a suggestion of damp cedar. As the fragrance progresses to its base, the cedar becomes more pronounced. But pronounced feels like too strong a word as the cedar note is quite subtle in the drydown. Alongside the cedar, iris supports the earthy vanillic violet; creating a warm and sweet, singular fragrance. I would consider its sillage mild to moderate and it has wonderful lasting power on my skin. For example, if I spray it in the early evening, it will last until bedtime and linger in the morning. Verte Violette gets a strong recommendation from me for someone who is seeking a soft violet that leans deep and green and away from a more candied violet such as Borsari’s Violetta di Parma

 

L’Artisan is not a strict natural perfume line, but they do not use phthalates or petrochemicals. (At least that was the response back from customer service). And they do not test on animals. In their literature they state that they use the “purist raw ingredients” but they do not state they use them exclusively. They have introduced an organic line, Jatamansi, which includes perfume and body care.

 

Verte Violette is available at L’Artisan.com and decants are available at The Perfumed Court.

 

Posted by ~Trish

 

photograph by Peter_Grahlmann on flickr

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L'Artisan Verte Violette. For your reconsideration.

fairy-forest-violet3

There’s been a lot of talk about violet perfumes lately. Especially new and unusual ones like Comme des  Garsons + Stephen Jones, Frédéric Malle Dans Tes Bras, and The Unicorn Spell by Les Nez. But there is another violet to (re)consider, L’Artisan’s Verte Violette. Verte Violette has been around since 2000, but is an innovative and unique violet fragrance in its own right.

Initially, it is slightly reminiscent of the guerlinade base of Guerlain’s classics L’Heure Bleue and Mitsouko. Possibly from the way the green violet leaves create a crushed balsamy effect alongside the floral, powdery violet petals. But probably more so from the heliotrope, even though it is not listed on L’Artisan’s website scent description. Heliotrope’s almondy-vanilla aroma (some liken it to play-doh) is definitely mingling in the topnotes. Immediately this fragrance is both comforting and refreshing, like a sweet walk through a forest at dawn. Dabbing Verte Violette on your wrists and on the nape of your neck is akin to picking a nosegay of spring’s first violets and pressing their leaves between your fingers to release their dewy greenness.verte-violette

Once the heart of Verte Violette emerges, the heliotrope/vanillic scent becomes even more apparent. The sweetness is balanced nicely by a touch of iris soapiness and just a suggestion of damp cedar. As the fragrance progresses to its base, the cedar becomes more pronounced. But pronounced feels like too strong a word as the cedar note is quite subtle in the drydown. Alongside the cedar, iris supports the earthy vanillic violet; creating a warm and sweet, singular fragrance. I would consider its sillage mild to moderate and it has wonderful lasting power on my skin. For example, if I spray it in the early evening, it will last until bedtime and linger in the morning. Verte Violette gets a strong recommendation from me for someone who is seeking a soft violet that leans deep and green and away from a more candied violet such as Borsari’s Violetta di Parma.

L’Artisan is not a strict natural perfume line, but they do not use phthalates or petrochemicals. (At least that was the response back from customer service). And they do not test on animals. In their literature they state that they use the “purist raw ingredients” but they do not state they use them exclusively. They have introduced an organic line, Jatamansi, which includes perfume and body care.

Verte Violette is available at L’Artisan.com and decants are available at The Perfumed Court.

Posted by ~Trish

See Stylecaster’s L’Artisan pick for summer!

photograph by Peter_Grahlmann on flickr

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