There’s some really exciting products on the market at the moment – little gems that use intelligent technology and natural ingredients to help make you look your absolute best. Today’s three fave products I’m raving about also happen to originate from different corners of the globe,meaning we have a covetable travel-beauty mash-up.
A year or so ago I switched to cleansing my face with Micellar Cleansers, and my skin has never looked better. It’s often the case that the simpler the products, the most effective the care. USA‘s best-known natural brand Origins has just launched Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins™ Mega-Mushroom Skin-Relief Micellar Cleanser, £27.50. While it is not exactly simple (it’s packed with well researched ingredients and science know-how), the principle is with its ‘pampering swipe it and is gone’ ethos making it one of the best Micellar solutions I’ve tried.
The soap and alcohol-free formula takes off the day’s dirt and makeup and seems to moisturise at the same time – probably something to do with the signature skin-soothing Mega-Mushroom blend that is central to the Dr Weil sub-brand. It’s also packed with antioxidant-rich Berry Ferment so skin looks alive and radiant after use.
The cleanser aims to counteract the effects of environmental pollutants on the skin and also aims to be an alternative to cleansers that need to be rinsed off. Frequent cleansing with traditional rinse-off cleansers can disrupt skin’s protective barrier and cause irritation. Impurities in tap water, such as iron, copper and zinc, can make matters worse by acting as skin damaging free radicals. Micellar technology, on the other hand, sees tiny micelle molecules act like magnets to grab onto and trap unwanted oil, pollution and dirt. Impurities are then easily lifted away and wiped off with a cotton pad, without irritating even the most sensitive skin. This leaves skin squeaky clean and velvety-soft to touch. A keeper.
Next on my radar is the new South African beauty brand Malée, which has just launched in the UK. Malée (pronounced May-lay) focuses on body care products and the brand was originally created in South Africa in 2010, inspired by the beauty of the country’s wide landscapes, incredible wildlife and culture.
Named after founder Zeze Oriaikhi-Sao’s great grandmother, Malée is a term of affection for a strong learned woman in her native language Bini and an expression for ‘Beauty with Soul’. The ingredients used are those that have been traditionally used by African women for centuries and also which are widely found across the continent.
The natural ingredients – think shea butter, cacao seed butter and avocado oil – have been combined with modern scientific research and the result is a product line that includes pampering oils, scrubs, creams and fragrances. Well regarded as a spa brand in South Africa – with four different scents available – Malée has now been launched in the UK with its first signature fragrance Verdure.
I’ve been trying out the fab Moisturising Oil, £38. Unlike many other body oils, this leaves just a whisper of oil on your skin – it’s unbelievably light and sinks in beautifully – jleaving your limbs well moisturised with a faint sheen and gloss. Best of all is the light fragrance. Verdure is inspired by African wetlands and has green notes of citrus, mint and patchouli. It’s deep yet uplifting at the same time.
I also love the design with the tiny, etched markings reminiscent of tribal patterns, but with a minimalist, clean approach. Really looking forward to seeing (and smelling) the other fragrances in the range.
Finally, we go to Stockholm with Maria Nila hair products, which were launched in the UK last year. The 100% vegan range centres around colour-protection hair care and finishing products with a trade background. The cool brand develops and makes all the products in Helsingborg in Sweden with a focus on healthy working conditions and producing high quality products.
Last year, the brand created a buzz in the UK with its Colour Refresh hair masques. Containing colour pigments to boost hair colour, they are available n a wide range of shades, and were popular with beauty babes going to the summer’s festivals (with bright red and pink pop particularly popular)
I’ve been trying the mini version of the Finishing Spray, which comes in a peach tin with a stripped-back Art Deco look. A whole range of travel-sized products will be available in May in the UK so watch this space.
This simply spritzes on dry hair for strong hold. It’s light and gentle on hair texture (no crispy bits) and easily brushes out. It also has a lovely, sweet scent and is perfect for that vital finishing touch – adding a touch of gloss too.
Maria Nila products are available at Sally Express, www.sallyexpress.com