Dear international readers of Beautyjagd,
Welcome to the second English-language edition of Beautyjagd! This is a condensed version of the most important articles that have appeared on my blog over the last two weeks. For more information about this new format, click here. And now: enjoy the best of Beautyjagd in English!
Hi everyone, I am back in Nuremberg! I had a wonderful time in Berlin – I already told you about some of the things I did in the last edition of my Beauty Notes! – and, of course, the week went by much too quickly. On my very last afternoon I visited Original Unverpackt (Originally Unpackaged) in Kreuzberg. Original Unverpackt is Berlin’s first supermarket to sell groceries in bulk and without packaging. You bring your own containers or buy them in store. The main reason why I wanted to visit Original Unverpackt was to check out the products of Berlin-based artisan beauty label CremeKampagne: the supermarket carries some of CremeKampagne’s products including shampoo and shower gel. I bought some rather interesting toothpaste tablets (they start to foam up when you chew on them) and an unscented Cremekampagne lip balm which was packaged in a cute little candy wrapper. For more info on CremeKampagne, check out their homepage (no English-language version unfortunately) or Annika’s article on her blog. I think Original Unverpackt’s retail concept is typically Berlin – innovative, sustainable and at the same time ever so slightly retro: I remember that in the 1980s many organic stores in Germany sold at least a part of their product range without packaging.
If you are a regular reader you probably know that I also write blog posts for organic online store Najoba. In my most recent Najoba article I’m presenting my favourite organic brands from around the world! We are starting our journey in France, then travel onwards to New Zealand, Korea and India and then via Ireland back to Germany. And speaking of Ireland: a lot is happening there as far as organic beauty is concerned. Najoba has just added an interesting new Irish brand to its online store – Kinvara. The family-owned company is based in the small seaside town of Kinvara in County Galway – hence the name – and currently offers three products: a cleansing oil, a serum and the Active Rosehip Day Cream. Najoba sent me all three Kinvara products so I could try them out. The formulations are based on rosehip kernel oil – I love rosehip oil and I particularly liked the day cream. Rosehip oil is in second place in the INCI declaration which is also the reason why the cream has a slight yellow tint. It has a great texture, too; kind of like an oil gel in a cream form with a very subtle lemon pie fragrance. The Kinvara day cream costs around 25.95 Euro.
For the last few weeks I’ve pretty much continuously worn sandals because the heatwave we are experiencing in Southern Germany is relentless! As a result my consumption of foot care products has also gone up. Sirkku from Hilla Naturkosmetik recently gave me the Exfoliating Hand & Foot Mask from Estonian brand Joik – and although I was initially skeptical I have to admit that the moisturizing effect is amazing! Although you really have to scrub your bathtub or shower cabin afterwards. The mask is a thick creamy oil-salt paste with finely-milled scrub particles which is massaged onto the feet, especially the soles and heels. Then you rinse off the paste and gently pat the skin dry. I was impressed by how soft, smooth and hydrated my feet were. And the delicious scent of lemon tarte is simply divine. The Hand & Foot Mask costs 11.90 Euro.
Tautropfen (lit. „dew drop“) is one of the beauty brands belonging to German company Börlind. Börlind recently relaunched the Tautropfen portfolio and I was sent one of the new products in the Rose range: Jalë Sanftes Gesichtsreinigungsgel (Gentle Face Cleansing Gel). Usually I prefer cleansing milks for my night-time routine, but in this heat I like to use a foaming cleanser every once in a while. Certified by BDIH, the pink-tinted Jalë cleansing gel is based on water, glycerin and sugar tensides. It has a liquid texture and a nice rose fragrance and left my skin clean and fresh without tightness. The cleanser costs 15 Euro for 150ml.
Last not least I want to show you Everyday Natural Sunscreen SPF30 from US brand Goddess Garden. One of my readers from the US brought me a travel size when she visited Germany (thank you Mel!). The lotion contains nano-free zinc oxide and titanium dioxide and is very comfortable to wear; the texture is liquid and easy to apply and it doesn’t leave a whitish tint on the skin. It is also available as a spray.
And here are some of the most interesting beauty news I’ve come across last week!
- Australian colour cosmetics brand Zuii Organic has launched 15 new shades in its Liquid Foundation. More information here.
- Aoiro Airdesign (a German-Japanese company which I introduced on Beautyjagd here) has launched a new natural home fragrance, Hakudo. More information here.
- US brand Rahua has launched a new Dry Shampoo.
- The A Night for Green Beauty (ANFGB) took place in Chicago – more info is available here.
- Stark Skincare has developed a new serum: Everlasting Calm + Smooth Infusion.
- German brand Regulat Beauty has launched a new Extra Rich Cream. More information here.
- In September, German brand Primavera will introduce a new Regenerierende Handcreme Lavendel Vanille (Regenerating Hand Cream Lavender Vanilla) – I can’t wait to try it out!
- In Japan, mineral makeup brand MiMC has brought out the limited edition collection Botanic Euphoria. Check it out here.
- And French brand Patyka is launching three products for sensitive skin.
Organic cosmetics are looking boring? Far from it! There are quite a few brands these days that bring out products with beautiful packaging – and this gave me an idea: I’ve decided to compile a Pictorial Puzzle. I will photograph a small detail of a product or packaging and you will have to guess which product it is. The winner will receive a small parcel with organic cosmetics from me. EDIT: And the winner of the Beauty Puzzle competition is Laura; congratulations! Laura will receive her parcel next week. I didn’t expect you all to solve the puzzle so quickly – you’re amazing! [For more pictures click here for the original German article Sommer-Rätsel: Welche Beauties sind das?]
It is once again super hot here and I am sweltering at my desk – the ideal time for a post in cooperation with organic aromatherapy brand Primavera! Here are three cool (pardon the pun!) Primavera products which are perfect for hot summer temperatures:
One of my summer time classics (I always have a bottle of it in my bathroom!) is the SOS Spray from Primavera. It’s a mixture of three different hydrosols: witch hazel water which has an anti-oxidant and slightly astringent effect, rose water to soothe and moisturize the skin and orange blossom water for hydration and because it smells lovely – it’s a beautiful combination, the fragrance is ever so slightly dominated by the orange blossom notes. I like to spray the SOS spray on my face, arms and neck or you can use it as a regular facial toner. A 30ml bottle of the SOS Spray costs 7.95 Euro.
Another Primavera product which is great for sticky summer days is the Kühler Kopf (Keep a Cool Head) roll-on – it contains mint oil and helps to soothe tension headaches, improves concentration and you can also apply it on insect bites! One of my year-round favourites. And here are a couple of DIY beauty recipes with peppermint oil! Pure essential peppermint oil contains 40% menthol and has a great cooling effect. I tried making my own peppermint scented body powder recently and it worked really well: I filled rice powder into an empty tea tin and added a few drops of peppermint oil. Shake the mixture up and you have a refreshing body powder which helps to keep the skin cool in this summer heat. Thanks to the peppermint, the powder also has a slight anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal effect.
Remember to always dilute essential oils – never use them straight from the bottle! For a refreshing body oil you can add 5 drops of peppermint oil to 50ml of any plant-based carrier oil (soy oil, sunflower oil or whatever you have standing around in your kitchen). This mixture is supposed to also repel insects and mosquitos. Or you can make your own cooling food and leg spray: add 6 drops of peppermint oil to 30ml of rose water, shake the mixture and fill it in a spray bottle. One more thing about peppermint: this essential oil shouldn’t be used on children younger than 6 years old.
Have you ever tried out St. John’s Wort? The generic name of St John’s Wort is hypericon perforatum; it’s a yellow-blooming plant which contains high levels of anti-inflammatory flavonoids and tannins. If you drink it as a tea it’s a great herb to help lift the mood and when used in cosmetics, it has a healing and soothing effect on the skin. St. John’s Wort make the skin slightly photo-sensitive so you shouldn’t use it whilst sunbathing but as an after sun product it works really well. Primavera also has a St. John’s Wort infused body oil: here the herb has been macerated in organic olive oil. St. John’s Wort has an interesting fragrance which isn’t to everyone’s taste – personally I like it very much, it reminds me of Mediterranean herbs and the sunny, dry landscapes of Italy and Spain. [Sommerliche Erfrischung mit Primavera]
I can still remember when Dr. Hauschka launched its first Eyeshadow Palette – it was back in 2008, as part of the Stone Colours limited edition collection. The palette was so successful that Dr. Hauschka later integrated it in its standard cosmetics range. Now, seven years later, the brand has re-launched the quattro palette and I think it’s time to look at this classic beauty product in more detail!
The colours of the four powder shadows have remained the same, but the packaging is different and the palette now comes with a double-sided brush applicator. One end of the brush is rounded off so you can apply the powders as an eyeshadow, the other end has a diagonal shape and is perfect for applying the colours as an eyeliner or an eyebrow powder.
The powder shadows have a silky texture and give a matte or satin effect finish – check out the colour swatches in the pictures. Shade 01 is a warm ivory tone, 02 is a light browny-beige colour (it reminded me of milk coffee, actually!), 03 is a slightly cooler taupe-grey and 04 is a highly pigmented, dark anthracite. You can use the colours on your eyes or to define and shape your eyebrows.
The ivory is a great highlighter since it is not too white but has a warm tint to it. I was also impressed by how long-lasting the powder shadows were – I used all four colours on my eyes recently and am happy to report that the colours stayed put for almost the entire day (even when it was really hot outside) without ending up in my eyelid crease!
One of my favourite day-time looks is the following: First I use shade 02 on the entire movable lid. On the outer part of the eyelid I apply shade 03 and blend the colour outwards. Then I use 04 as an eyeliner and dab a little 01 onto the highest point underneath my browbone – and you’re done!
The Eyeshadow palette is certified by NaTrue and the powder shadows are based on talcum powder, glimmer (or rather, magnesium stearate), processed plant-based oils and silk proteins. They have a very light floral scent. [For more pictures click here for the original German article Dr. Hauschka: Limited Edition Eyeshadow Palette]
I can’t even count the number of recent Beauty Notes that I introduced with a reference to the horrible heatwave we’ve been having recently! This week was no different: in Nuremberg we’ve had temperatures of around 35 C every day and I can’t help but wish for a bit of cold and rain. Supposedly things will get cooler this Sunday so let us hope for the best! During two of the hottest days last week I was in Munich. I spent a nice afternoon with Sirkku from Hilla Naturkosmetik in the shade of Munich’s famous Englischer Garten park, had sushi with the ladies from organic beauty PR agency carl.com and met two very nice Beautyjagd readers at Beauty & Nature, a well-stocked organic perfumery store. I also visited a couple of other organic beauty stores including Organic Luxury and Aromare.
Aromare is a long-established store for organic cosmetics in Munich’s Schwabing area. Beside the usual organic beauty brands (Primavera, Annemarie Börlind, Martina Gebhardt and so on) Aromare also sells niche labels like Provida, Argan d’Or and Lederhaas. Owner Biggi Renner has a small fragrance atelier – Création de Parfum – and creates her own fragrances based on pure essential oils. I couldn’t decide between Corsika Sommer (a blend of Mediterranean notes including eucalyptus, mimosa and strawflower – plants that grow on the French island of Corsica) and Jasmina. I love jasmine so in the end I bought a small flacon of the jasmine fragrance for around 26 Euro. It’s an interesting fragrance construction: the jasmine notes only developed after around five to ten minutes; accompanied by accords of tuberose and neroli. The fragrance is light and floral and not too overwhelming, even when it’s hot outside. Biggi Renner also creates personalised fragrance blends, for more information check out her homepage.
At Beauty & Nature I bought the Sensitive Skin Gel from New Zealand brand Living Nature. Especially developed for sensitive, dry, irritated, inflamed or atopic skin, the gel contains healing manuka honey from New Zealand, evening primrose oil which is rich in gamma-linoleic acid and soothing calendula extract. The formula also includes a gel-like ingredient which is derived from a New Zealand native flax plant and is similar to aloe vera, as well as essential oils of manuka, tea tree, lavender and rose geranium. I used the Sensitive Gel as a night cream during the last few days because it felt so nice and cool on my skin – it is very easy to apply and has a very light tea tree fragrance.
In my fridge I currently have the new Sandorini facial toner from CMD which I was recently sent by the company. Seabuckthorn oil is often used in after-sun care since it has a strong anti-oxidant effect. The CMD toner contains seabuckthorn extract, seabuckthorn oil, glycerin and water and has a nice moisturizing effect because it is ever so slightly gel-like. It is scented with a light citrus fragrance and is very refreshing, especially when you apply it straight from the fridge! CMD has also just brought put a Face&Body Shimmer, a slightly thicker body oil with fine shimmer particles – a very summery product.
And speaking of body oils: DM’s organic own label brand Alverde recently launched a Schönheitsöl mit fünf Intensiv-Pflege-Ölen (Beauty Oil with Five Intensive Moisturing Oils). The oil is packaged in a glass flacon with a pump dispenser and contains soy oil, sunflower oil, argan oil, marula oil, grapeseed kernel oil, olive oil and amaranth oil (in that order). The scent is lovely, a fruity gourmand fragrance with spicy undertones – very nice. I think it’s great that Alverde has launched a body oil which is reflecting the trend towards multipurpose beauty oils – already a very popular product category in France. A bottle of the Schönheitsöl costs 4.95 Euro and is available in DM stores.
By the way, while I was at Beauty & Nature in Munich I found travel sizes of German brand Leo&Lilo’s hand creams. I had already introduced the Blütenrausch Kamelien-Handcreme (Flower Intoxication Camellia Hand Cream) on my blog; now I am the proud owner of a small tube of Pfingstrose Handcreme (Peony Hand Cream). The cream has a light floral fragrance and is based on olive oil.
I also discovered a new Terra Naturi limited edition in my local Müller store. Terra Naturi is Müller certified organic own label brand; the limited edition is called Vintage Love and contains two striped multi-colour powder blushes, two lipsticks, two Eyeshadow palettes, two eyebrow gels and a Volume & Precision Mascara. Terra Naturi doesn’t bring out as many limited editions as DM’s Alverde (or Rossmann’s Alterra), so it was nice to see a new bunch of products. Available in all Müller stores. [Beauty-Notizen 14.08.2015]
And this concludes the second installment of the English version of Beautyjagd! Have a good day and see you in two weeks!