English Naturkosmetik

News and reviews from the world of organic beauty: 21

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Dear international readers of Beautyjagd,

Welcome to the next 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!

Best wishes
Julia

beauty-notizen-13.5.2016

Hi everyone and welcome to the next installment of Beautyjagd in English!

Beauty Notes, 13.5.2016

I’m currently preparing for yet another trip – this time I’m going to France, to the Jura region. I have already immortalised my favourite travel slippers on Instagram: the pink-coloured babouches from Antik Batik have been accompanying me for more than 20 years. I take them with me on all my travels. Sadly, they are now starting to look a little tattered around the edges. But I love my slippers and will wear them until they fall apart!

French beauty magazine Votre Beauté has been around since 1933. I’ve had a subscription for the last two years: I love Votre Beauté’s articles on new French beauty trends and the detailed features on more technical topics such as new ingredients. And I was very sad to read that the magazine, after more than 80 years, is being discontinued. Sniff! Adieu, Votre Beauté, I’ll miss you!

Before leaving for France I needed to stock up on my favourite concealer, the Anti-Red Concealer from German colour cosmetics brand marie w.. I discovered the Anti-Red Concealer in September 2014 (you can read more about it here – German only, sorry!) and it has taken up permanent residence in my makeup bag; I take it on all my travels! The Concealer is a loose mineral powder and I use it almost every day – the greenish-yellow colour instantly neutralises redness and make the teint look beautifully even-toned. I love it!

I also bought the new Sensitivdeo Bio-Lavendel & Bambus (Sensitive Deo Organic Lavender & Bamboo) from German aromatherapy brand Primavera. I had read about this deo and it sounded interesting: the alcohol-free roll-on is based on water, coconut oil, sunflower oil and bamboo powder. The fragrance is reminiscent of Primavera’s Regenerating Hand Cream Lavender Vanilla (one of my favourite hand creams!). I apply the deodorant every couple of days or so, alternating it with my usual baking soda-based deodorant cream. It is my impression that the baking soda deodorants last a little longer than the bamboo powder deo… but haven’t really tested the Sensitive Deo long enough to be certain. I’ll keep you posted!

One of my readers (I can’t remember who!) once mentioned in a comment that she uses loose cotton wool rather than pressed cotton wool pads to remove her makeup. I was intrigued and bought a little bag of organic loose cotton wool to try out this method of makeup removal. It felt a little strange at first but then I was amazed by how soft the cotton wool (saturated with micellar water) felt against my skin – sensational! I think I’ll continue using loose cotton wool from now on. Thanks for the tip!

A few weeks before my trip to Asia I received the two new lipsticks from Living Nature: Wild Fire and Pure Passion. In Tokyo and Seoul I didn’t feel like wearing red lipstick but this week, for whatever reason, I wanted bright colours on my lips! Although the lipsticks are not vegan (they contain beeswax) they are made without carmine – and of course they do not include synthetic colourants either. Instead, iron oxides and plant-based extracts are responsible for the fabulous red shades: Wild Fire is a neutral (and ever so slightly warm) light red which is not too dark. Pure Passion is darker than Wild Fire, the shade has blue undertones and looks a little like red wine. The lipsticks are pretty adaptable: You can either apply a single coat of lipstick for a light wash of colour or go for two coats to intensify the shade. The finish is transparent to creamy, there are no shimmer or glitter particles – exactly what I like! The texture is moisturising and waxy and the lipstick lasts surprisingly well (it doesn’t bleed either). I like both colours – not sure yet which will become my favourite (I think it might be Wild Fire…! 🙂 In Germany, the two Living Nature lipsticks are available directly through Living Nature or other online stores like Naturdrogerie. Each lipstick is priced at 21.90 Euro.

And how about a chocolate dessert to finish off these Beauty Notes? 🙂 I first read about the new Shampooing Solide au Chocolat from French brand Lamazuna a couple of months ago. I like Lamazuna’s products (their motto is „zero waste“) and I’m a big fan of solid shampoos so I absolutely had to order this limited edition shampoo bar. The water-free shampoo bar looks exactly like a small chocolate pudding, don’t you think? And the smell is divine! You massage the wet hair with the shampoo bar; it will immediately foam up (the tensides are really mild). The Shampooing Solide is vegan and recommended for normal hair. In Germany, Lamazuna is available online, for example through Najoba. Or you can order through the company’s French webstore. I have already introduced Lamazuna’s solid deodorant here (German only, sorry!) and I also own the brand’s Solid Shampoo with Scots Pine Extract.

And here are some interesting beauty news which I discovered last week:

  • US deodorant brand Schmidt’s has introduced two new deodorant sticks that are made without baking soda (one of these is scented with geranium – delicious!!!). More info is available here. And Meow Meow Tweet (another US brand) is also launching new deodorant sticks. More info is available here.
  • US brand RMS Beauty has launched a new dark bronzer (Contour Bronze) – click here for more information. I also read that RMS Beauty is now available on sephora.com in the US.
  • The spring collection of US colour cosmetics brand Kjaer Weis is offering two new products: the eyeshadow Angel and the cream blush Precious. For more info, click here.
  • And German drugstore retailer Rossmann’s organic own label brand Alterra has launched a new Cream-Oil Lotion with Pistachio.

[Click here for more pictures and the original German article Beauty-Notizen 13.5.2016]

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How to: Refill the lip balm from Yverum

Earlier this year I showed you German brand Yverum’s new lip balm in these Beauty Notes. I love the texture which is nicely balanced between oily and waxy without feeling sticky or thick on the lips. The lip balm is based on olive oil and plant-based waxes and is packaged in an elegant, luxurious metal case. Another thing I like about the Yverum Lip Care Stick is that it is refillable!

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And this is how it works: on the left you can see the original Lip Care Stick, on the right the refill cartridge. You unscrew the lower end of the metal case (a little spring appears), pull out the empty lip balm pack, insert the new cartridge, screw the metal case back on and you’re done!

The lip care balm contains antioxidant sea buckthorn oil so the stick is tinted yellow but the colour is not visible on the lips. The balm is fragrance free, certified by the BDIH and vegan. The Lip Care Stick costs 17.95 Euro (the refill cartridge is priced at 4.95 Euro). There is a store finder on the Yverum website. I received my refill from Yverum at their exhibition stand at Vivaness trade show this February.

[Click here for more pictures and the original German article How to: Den Lip Care Stick von Yverum nachfüllen]

beauty-notizen-27.5.2016

Beauty Notes, 27.5.2016

Today’s Beauty Notes are all about the colour green! I recently spent a week in a little town in the Jura region of France (here is the article series about this trip – German only, sorry!) and brought back a few souvenirs. If you read my blog regularly you’ll know that I love anything with fir trees – fir fragrance, fir honey, fir yoghurt (yes, really!), fir jelly… So I simply had to buy a bottle of the Liqueur de Sapin from Emile Pernot. This aromatic fir tree liqueur is produced by a traditional distillery in the town of Pontarlier: the young tips of fir trees are collected, distilled and blended with other herbs and sugar. The fragrance of this liqueur is cool and woodsy, with a lingering fir tree taste which is heavenly!

Also traditional, also wood-inspired and also from France: the hair care products from Gayral which I saw in a number of organic supermarkets on my trip to France. Gayral is based in the Savoyen region of France: the company harvests birch sap and manufactures birch juices but in addition to their birch products they also offer a hair lotion and the Shampooing à la Sève de Bouleau. Actually, the first thing I noticed about this product was the very cool bottle label which features birch trees, a mermaid with long hair and a man wearing Alpine clothing! The mild shampoo is based on 65% birch juice, it contains a sugar tenside and an amino acid tenside and has a very liquid texture (you need to shake the bottle before use). As with most organic shampoos I shampoo twice, the shampoo foamed up well during the second wash and the fragrance combines notes of herbs and ylang ylang. I’ve used the shampoo twice so far; for regular use I’ll probably alternate it with my deep-cleansing shampoo from Unique. What a fabulous product: the Shampooing à la Sève combines the flavour of the French alps with ingredients traditionally more associated with Scandinavian countries like Finland or Sweden!

How green is green really? My new article for the Bio-Blog (German only, sorry!) is about the differences between natural-inspired/near-natural cosmetics, organic cosmetics and bio cosmetics. As a note for my international readers: in Germany (and in Western Europe in general) organic cosmetics are strictly regulated. There are a number of certification agencies in the EU and the general standard of organic cosmetics is very high. Both consumers and manufacturers make very clear distinctions between certified organic cosmetics and „green“ products. However, once you look at organic brands that come from outside of the EU, the borders between real organic beauty (i.e. certified products) and „green“ (or green-washed) cosmetics becomes blurred. This is something that I noticed during my recent trip to Korea – and it was also the inspiration for this article topic.

In March I had bought two products from French niche brands. The first of these is the Body Lotion Le Lait Peau Douce from Absolution which has a fabulous green fragrance. The scent combines notes of freshly cut grass with aromatic basil but is still very subtle. Over the last few years I have featured a number of products from Absolution on this blog – here, for example. I bought the body lotion from French online store Mademoiselle Bio for 28 Euro.

Alorée is another brand which has already appeared on Beautyjagd – here are reviews of the CC Cream and the Spray Brume Bi-Phase City-Protect. The Alorée products contain antioxidant chlorophyll, a very interesting ingredient. Some time ago the company launched the Hand Cream City-Comfort which is packaged in a convenient 50 ml tube. The cream is based on rye water, shea butter and sunflower oil, the texture is creamy and not too liquid and forms a very light but non-sticky film on the skin. The scent is green and fruity – very nice! I’ve bought the Alorée hand cream at French online store Monde Bio for 10 Euro.

Have you ever heard of cacay oil? When I returned from my trip to France I found a little bottle of the Cacay Anti-Aging Face Oil from Oils of Heaven in my letter box. I tried it out the very next morning and was intrigued: cacay oil (caryodendron orinocense seed oil) is based on linoleic acid and contains a high percentage (8%) of unsaponified ingredients such as vitamin E. These ingredients have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties – in fact, according to Oils of Heaven, cacay oil (which is sometimes spelled „kahai“ oil) contains three times more transretinoic acid than rosehip kernel oil. Transretinoic acid is often described as plant-based retinol. I think cacay oil might be the next big oil hype, after argan oil and sacha inci oil! I applied the yellow-tinted cacay oil on top a hydrosol; it wasn’t absorbed as quickly as rosehip kernel oil but I’d still describe it as a lighter oil. It has a strong nut fragrance, by the way. Cacay oil comes from the Amazonas region of Colombia; buying cacay oil also helps the small farmers in that region since they don’t have to cut down the cacay trees. So far I have only seen the Cacay Oil from Oils of Heaven in online store Love Lula from the UK but I’m willing to bet that cacay oil is going to appearing in more European beauty products soon!

And now a quick change from green to fruits: I have just tried out the new Dusch-Sorbet Mango Zitrone (Shower Sorbet Mango Lemon) from drugstore retailer DM’s certified organic own label brand Alverde – the description alone sounded delicious! This product has a kind of fluffy gel texture and the fruity fragrance is reminiscent of an almost ripe mango. Alverde will soon launch a Shower Sorbet with rhubarb and orange. Very summery!

And these are the most interesting organic beauty news I have found last week:

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  • DM’s Alverde has launched the new colour cosmetics limited edition Natural Brightness: the collection offers two small eyeshadow palettes (I bought the palette „Nude Rose“), a striped blusher which looks nice, three lipsticks, three lip glosses and two loose powders with integrated powder brush (the powders contains shimmer particles and are available in two shades).
  • Alverde has also introduced new cleansing wipes in the BeautyFruity range for younger skin.
  • And UK brand Lily Lolo is launching new nail polishes (they are 8-free, more information is available here).

[Click here for more pictures and the original German article Beauty-Notizen 27.5.2016]

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Fragrant Beauties 11: Golden Bonnet

I took the pictures of this perfume bottle back in February. And while I was snapping away the sun came out and lit up the heavy flacon, resulting in a nice light-and-shadow effect in the background! The flacon was manufactured in around 1850 in Bohemia, it is 19 cm tall and decorated with three ribbons – the middle ribbon is etched yellow-gold, just like the tip of the bottle stopper. This perfume bottle actually has an inner separate stopper and I think it might have once contained an especially precious (and expensive) fragrance – perhaps amber or sandalwood?

[Click here for more pictures and the original German article Duftende Schönheiten 11: Goldhaube]

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Sun protection 6: Organic beauty products – annual sun care test 2016

Here is the fifth Beautyjagd annual sun protection review article! Since this is the first sun care review to appear in English I’d better explain how this format works: each year in early summer I publish a long review article about my favourite new organic sun protection products. As you might know, sun care is a difficult product category for organic beauty brands. Since organic certifications forbid synthetic sun filters and chemical ingredients, organic sun creams usually include mineral filters like titanium dioxide or zinc oxide as an SPF. These can leave a bit of a white tint on the face. As a rule, organic sun care products also have heavier textures than conventional SPF creams.

However, because sun protection is becoming such an important category (even in Europe where tanned skin still rules supreme!) many organic beauty manufacturers now invest heavily into research and development and they are constantly updating and improving their sun protection products. In this article I concentrate on new launches from the past twelve months. The products I write about are primarily from Europe but also include international brands. The line-up includes products from premium, niche, mid-priced and mass market beauty brands and covers different textures and SPF levels.

All of the products portrayed in this article are organic; I have tested every single sun care product on my face and/or body and my selection only contains products that I personally found convincing and effective. Almost all of the products covered in this article I bought myself; any press samples are mentioned in the respective product entry.

I have judged each product by the following criteria: product comfort (how comfortable the cream feels on the skin), texture and whitening factor.

  • To evaluate the product comfort, I use the following categories: „imperceptible“, „very pleasant“, „pleasant“ and „ok“ – „ok“ means that the cream felt a little sticky on my skin and after a few hours the skin began to feel heated. Any products less comfortable than this are not included in the article – I don’t want to waste my time on thick, unpleasant products, not when there are so many fabulous new launches to try out! I compare the stickiness and/or oiliness of a product by applying it on half of my face and then applying a blotting paper or tissue to see how much oil was transferred to the paper or how well the tissue stuck to my skin.
  • Finally, the whitening factor: my skin tone is light to medium and I have used the terms „very little“, „light“, „medium“ and „strong“ to describe how strong the whitening effect of a cream was. All of my measurements are, of course, subjective; I do not have access to laboratory equipment or the technology to assemble actual scientific data.

If you are interested, here is the very first sun care post that appeared on Beautyjagd. In 2012, the first year of my annual product review, I wrote about Eco Cosmetics, Kibio and Florame (Kibio has since been discontinued). The next year, I showed you sun creams from Melvita, ThisWorks, Vivesana and Maienfelser, in 2014 followed sun care launches from Biosolis, Eco Cosmetics, Kimberly Sayer, Lavera, Alverde, Ringana and Bare Minerals. And last year, the annual review included products from Eco by Sonya, Bio Beauté by Nuxe, Acorelle, Bioregena, The Organic Pharmacy, John Masters Organics, Lavanila, Badger, Evoa, Eco Cosmetics, Biosolis, Alteya Organics and Ambient. I also tested products from Tea Natura and Bjobj and Lovea.

And now, let’s start with my first sun care discovery from last summer!

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In June 2015 I was on holiday in Bordeaux when I came across a sun care display of French beauty brand Algamaris. I immediately fell in love with the textures of Algamaris‘ sun protection creams (you can read more about it in these Beauty Notes). And now the products of the Biarritz-based brand are finally available in Germany! The Algamaris sun care portfolio is comprehensive and includes sprays, lotions and face creams, mostly with high (SPF 30) and very high (SPF 50) sun protection. The sun filters are based on titanium dioxide and zinc dioxide and an antioxidant algae-derived ingredient.

♦ The Spray Solaire SPF 30 from Algamaris is based on processed oils which results in a texture that is almost as liquid as water. Shake the tube (which comes equipped with a spray nozzle) before spraying; the texture is smooth and sinuous and the product spreads really quickly. The whitening factor is light (the non-scented Spray Solaire SPF 50 leaves a slightly stronger whitish shade but it is still very acceptable for SPF 50!) and the spray feels very comfortable on the skin. The fragrance combines notes of coconut and sweet florals – a pleasant summer fragrance. According to the packaging claim the spray offers UVA and UVB protection. It does not contain nano particles, is certified by Cosmebio/Ecocert and although the product doesn’t carry a vegan certificate, the INCIs are vegan. One tube contains 125 ml and costs 19.95 Euro. It is available online, for example through Naturdrogerie, najoba, Savue or Amazingy, or in Alnatura organic supermarkets. My tip: Great textures which make this product delightful to use! I use it on my body rather than the face.

♦ Since I liked the Spray Solaire so much I decided to also buy the Creme Solaire Visage SPF 30 from Algamaris – and it became one of my favourite sun care products last summer! This is a sun cream for the face; in summer I apply it over a toner lotion or essence (sometimes I might use a drop of face oil, too). The cream is based on water and processed oils so it is light and non-sticky, comfortable to wear with a minimal whitening (the non-scented version with SPF 50 has a light to medium whitening effect). The finish is dewy but not shiny (the cream contains mattifying talcum powder): I usually apply a mineral powder foundation or some mattifying powder on top and that works really well. The fragrance is similar to the Spray Solaire (coconut and sweet floral notes). The product offers UVA and UVB protection (according to the packaging claim) and it does not contain nano particles. In my opinion the INCIs are vegan although there is no official certification. The airless pump dispenser contains 50 ml, the price is 16.00 Euro. Availability: online, for example through Naturdrogerie, najoba, Savue or Amazingy, offline in Alnatura supermarkets. My tip: One of my favourite face sun protection products for the summer!

♦ Finally, a brief note on the sun milk Lait Solaire SPF 30 from Algamaris: the milk is packaged in a large airless flacon with pump dispenser; the texture is liquid and light and is absorbed quickly into the skin on my body. On my face the milk looked a little more oily. Fragrance: coconut-florals. More hydrating than the Spray Solaire, with light whitening. 100 ml are priced at 16.95 Euro.

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♦ One of my personal highlights of last year’s Vivaness tradeshow were the Spray Solaires SPF 30 and SPF 50 from Acorelle, another French brand. I’ve already shown you the sprays here; they are based on processed oils so the texture is liquid and almost silicone-like (like the Algamaris sprays). This year the Acorelle sprays were repackaged into tubes (with spray nozzles), the ingredients were also updated. The sprays feel very pleasant on the skin, the whitening factor is light to medium (depending on how much product you use; SPF 50 is more whitening than SPF 30). The SPF is based on titanium dioxide; you need to shake the tube before use. The SPF 30 spray comes with a beautiful monoi fragrance, the unscented SPF 50 version has a very light aroma of rosemary. According to the packaging claim, both products offer UVA and UVB protection. They are certified by Cosmebio/Ecocert and neither product contains nano particles. Not vegan. Content: 100 ml; the price is 22.90 Euro. Available online, for example through Ecco Verde, najoba, Naturdrogerie or Belladonna. My tip: With their light texture and the tropical fragrance these two sprays are perfect for the body; also suitable if you can’t tolerate zinc oxide on your skin.

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Belgian brand Biosolis (I showed you some of the Biosolis products in the annual reviews of 2015 and 2014, for example the Fluid Extreme SPF 50+) has launched three new sun care products. Depending on the product Biosolis uses different sun filter ingredients which include plant-based karanja oil, titanium dioxide and zinc oxide.

♦ The first new product is the Melt-In Cream SPF 30 from Biosolis, a face cream which is packaged in an airless pump dispenser. The water-free product is based on rapeseed oil and processed oils and the texture is balm-like at first but then it melts very quickly into the skin without leaving a sticky film. The finish is dewy; if I use the cream on my face I apply it on top of a hydrating toner, no additional moisturiser is necessary. The whitening effect is very low and the cream feels pleasant on the skin. The sun filters include titanium dioxide and karanja oil and the fragrance is reminiscent of freshly cut hay. No nano particles; according to the product claim the Melt-In Cream offers UVA and UVB protection. The product is certified by Ecocert and in my opinion, the ingredients are vegan although there is no vegan certificate. The dispenser contains 100 ml which are priced at 22.50 Euro. Availability: online, for example through najoba or Ecco Verde, offline in drugstore chain Müller’s Naturshop stores. My tip: This product is good for drier skin types, also for darker skin tones because the whitening factor is so low.

♦ The second new launch is the Sun Spray SPF 50+ from Biosolis. Like the Acorelle and Algamaris sprays it is based on processed plant oils and has a liquid texture with a light yellow tint. The sun protection filters are karanja oil and titanium dioxide; the finish is shimmering-glossy. Whitening factor: light to medium, the spray feels pleasant on the skin and is scented with light notes of hay. Product claim: UVA and UVB protection; certified by Ecocert, the ingredients are vegan (in my opinion). You need to shake the bottle before use. The bottle contains 100 ml, the price is 20.90 Euro. Availability: mostly online, for example through najoba or Ecco Verde, offline at Müller Naturshop stores. My tip: This spray is good for the body since the whitening factor is very low, considering that the SPF is 50+!

♦ The third new Biosolis launch is the Oil Spray SPF 20 which is recommended for hair and body. The formula doesn’t contain mineral particles, the sun protection is taken care of by a higher percentage of karanja oil! As a result the rapeseed oil-based spray has a light yellow tint (no whitening at all); it feels pleasant on the skin but of course it isn’t a feather light formula (it is still an oil!). The finish is silky-glossy (depending on how much product you apply); there are no nano particles, UVA/UVB protection (product claim). The Oil Spray is certified by Ecocert and in my opinion, the ingredients are vegan. The bottle contains 100 ml which are priced at 24.95 Euro. Availability: online, for example through najoba oder Ecco Verde, also in Müller Naturshop stores. My tip: This spray is ideal for fans of sun oils and for already tanned skin. Protective and hydrating properties. Also suitable for bearded or hairy men who don’t like a whitening effect on their skin.

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♦ I’ve already shown the Pure Green Baby Sun Cream SPF 30 PA++ from Korean brand Innisfree in these Beauty Notes – and because there was so much reader interest I decided to include the product in my annual review article! Also, the Innisfree cream is available online. Pure Green Baby Sun is based on water and processed oil, the sun protection filters are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. The texture is creamy and almost non-sticky, it feels pleasant on the skin. Once you massage the cream into the face the whitening effect is light to medium. I was unable to find out whether this cream includes nano particles or not. It is certified by Ecocert; the product claim specifies UVA and UVB protection. In my opinion the ingredients are vegan. A tube contains 50 ml which are priced at around 15 Euro. In Germany, the product is available through the Innisfree webstore or on Ebay. My tip: The perfect product for all fans of Korean cosmetics! The sun cream is suitable for face and body; I always carry the handbag-sized tube with me for sun protection emergencies.

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♦ A few months ago I was in the UK and bought the Natural Protection Moisturizer SPF 25 from UK brand Balance Me at my local Waitrose supermarket. The product is packaged in a tube with a very slender applicator so it is easy to squeeze out the correct amount of cream. I apply the Natural Protection Moisturizer over a face oil or a cream; in summer time, however, I think the hydrating effect might be enough to wear it solo. The formula is based on water and processed oils; since I have a shiny T-zone I apply a powder on top of the sun cream. The sun protection filter is titanium dioxide; the texture is creamy-light and is absorbed quickly into the skin. Nice, fresh fragrance; slightly dewy finish, with a light whitening effect (very pleassant product comfort). No information about whether nano particles are included or not; the product claim specified UVA and UVB protection. No organic certification but the ingredients are 99% of natural origin. Vegan (in my opinion). The tube contains 40 ml which are priced at around 30 Euro. Availability: only online through UK stores, for example Love Lula or Alice&White. My tip: For daily use or as an additional protective layer on the face. The Tinted BB Cream from Balance Me has almost identical ingredients plus a little colour.

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♦ Last year one of my US readers sent me a small tube of the Everyday Natural Sunscreen SPF 30 from Goddess Garden. I liked the product and included it in my Beauty Notes. When I was in Tokyo last month, I saw the matching Everyday Natural Sunscreen Continuous Spray SPF 30 from Goddess Garden in organic perfumery store CosmeKitchen – and of course I simply had to buy it! The spray is based on aloe vera juice and coconut oil, the sun protection filter is zinc oxide. The texture is beautifully liquid; you simply spray the almost unscented milk onto the skin. It is really easy to apply, without streaking. The spray is more fresh than oily and has an almost cooling effect – very nice! Because the texture is so fresh it feels very pleasant on the skin; only a little sticky, with a dewy finish. The whitening factor is light to medium. No nano particles, the packaging claim specifies UVA and UVB protection. No organic certification; the ingredients are vegan (in my opinion). The aerosol contains 177 ml which are priced at around 20 Euro. Availability: online, for example through iHerb. My tip: A good choice if you don’t like oil-based textures and need additional hydration.

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♦ And now an own label product: German drugstore retailer Rossmann has recently launched two new sun protection products in its certified organic own label brand Alterra. I was curious so I bought the Sonnenmilch Mandel Hibiskus SPF 30 (Sun Milk Almond Hibiscus) from Alterra – you can find a first impression in these Beauty Notes. The sun milk is based on water and processed oils, the sun protection filter is titanium dioxide in nano particle size. Although the milky-creamy texture is pleasantly non-sticky and feels quite comfortable on the skin it is a little difficult to apply (some streaking at first). The fragrance is a pleasant blend of soft summery florals; the whitening effect is medium to strong and the finish is shimmering-glossy. Nano particles: yes; the product claim specifies UVA and UVB protection. Certified by NaTrue and carries a vegan seal. The bottle contains 200 ml, the price is 6.49 Euro. Available in all Rossmann outlets and through the Rossmann online store. My tip: The most affordable sun care product in this review!

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♦ Earlier this year German brand Lavera relaunched its Sun Spray SPF 20 which was initially introduced two years ago (here is the sun protection post from 2014 which features the „old“ spray). The relaunched spray is now based on sunflower oil instead of water but the packaging has remained the same and the texture is still liquid with a light yellow tint. Easy to apply; shake before use. The spray is lightly scented with notes of sandalwood, it is pleasant on the skin (neither sticky nor oily), the whitening factor is medium and the finish is glowing/dewy to glossy. The sun protection filter is titanium dioxide. Product claim: UVA and UVB protection, certified by NaTrue; vegan. The bottle contains 125 ml which are priced at 9.95 Euro. Widely available in organic supermarkets or online. My tip: Nice and non-sticky texture but the whitening effect is quite strong considering that the spray only offers SPF 20 protection.

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♦ Last entry: I had almost finished the research for this article when I received the Sonnencreme+ SPF 30 from German brand Beyer&Söhne. Although Hamburg-based Beyer&Söhne is not an organic brand, their beauty products are free from mineral oils, silicones or parabens. I checked the ingredients of their sun cream and decided that it would fit very nicely within the parameters of this review. The Sonnencreme+ is packaged in an airless pump dispenser; it is based on water and propanediol (a solvent/hydrating ingredient which in the case of the Sonnencreme+ is certified by Ecocert, so it is plant-derived, not synthetic). The propanediol makes the light and fluid texture slightly more liquid (and a little more sticky) than sun care products that are based on processed oils. The sun cream is easy to apply and is absorbed quickly into the skin; don’t use too much product at once otherwise the texture forms a little white residue here and there. The creams feels very pleasant on the skin, there is almost no shine. The sun protection filters are titanium dioxide (8%) and zinc oxide (15%), the whitening factor is light to almost non-existent (depending on how much product you use). The Sonnencreme+ also contains vitamin E, panthenol, vitamin C and Q10 (which have soothing and antioxidant properties). No nano particles; fragrance-free, no organic certification. The product claim specifies UVA and UVB protection. In my opinion the ingredients are vegan. The dispenser contains 100 ml, the price is 39.99 Euro. Availability: only online through the company’s own webstore (sold out at the moment, available again from mid-June). My tip: Suitable for face and body; a very pleasant light and moisturising (non-oily) texture. Applied as a thin layer this product is ideal as a makeup base (no shine).

My conclusion: Sun sprays based on processed plant oils with a liquidy-fluid texture are definitely a big trend at the moment! The classic mineral based filters titanium dioxide and zinc oxide are often paired with other ingredients, such as karanja oil. And although it is still difficult for organic manufacturers to offer effective sun care products which combine light textures with high levels of SPF protection, there has been a lot of ingredient/product research and development over the past year. I find it fascinating to observe how much R&D is happening in the sun care sector; it is one of the most interesting product categories in the organic beauty market.

If you are looking for maximum product comfort I’d recommend the products from Algamaris, the sprays from Acorelle, Goddess Garden, Balance Me and Beyer&Söhne. Anyone who simply can’t stand the whitening effect on their skin should try the oil-based Melt-In Cream from Biosolis (as well as the other two new Biosolis products). And if you need sun protection products with more hydration than oil I recommend trying out the two products from Goddess Garden or Beyer&Söhne. You should also check out the Beautyjagd sun care review articles from the last few years (see the links at the beginning of this article) for more great sun protection products!

[Click here for more pictures and the original German article Sonnenschutz 6: Naturkosmetik-Produkte im Test 2016]

Good-bye everyone and see you in a few weeks!

Julia

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