The next couple of posts will be about favourite products and makeup. Sorry if you’re thinking: oh noooooooooo! But strange as it may seem, my posts on makeup and skincare are high rating. So I thought I’d talk about some of the hero products I simply couldn’t live without.

So here are the nine products that I use daily – from L-R:

L’Oréal Elvive Re-Nutrition Nourishing Creme Conditioner with Royal Jelly. This conditioner has a lovely creamy consistency to it and a wonderful honey/coconut smell. It’s supposed to be for dry hair and the royal jelly helps to nourish – I have normal to oily hair but the conditioner certainly doesn’t weigh my hair down. It washes out easily and my hair is soft and silky. I’ve been through countless bottles of this luxurious conditioner.

Sensodyne Iso-Active Whitening toothpaste. I’ve used the Sensodyne range for years and years. I have very sensitive teeth so I don’t stray from Sensodyne, although this whitening toothpaste is new for me. It comes out as a gel then foams up as you brush. I think I prefer my normal Sensodyne toothpaste though (Sensodyne Rapid).

The Body Shop Shea Beautifying Oil. I’m a long-time fan of The Body Shop and have already reviewed this oil. There are 11 oils in the range but I have not ventured beyond Shea. It was love at first sniff. I use it every night on my hands, neck and a bit in the hair. It has the most intoxicating smell and I just love to retire for the night with wafts of this Shea Beautifying Oil lingering on my pillow.

Nivea Natural Oil. I bought this in Italy and it was immediate love. You can’t get this in New Zealand so I bought two more bottles whilst in Stockholm recently. This is hilarious I’m sure but because I don’t speak or read Italian, I thought it was an oil for dry skin. And I’ve been using it this way for months. Ah, nope: it is a shower gel but I haven’t used it in the shower. I simply slap it on my legs and arms or anywhere else that is suffering from dryness. It has a very delicate, very pleasant scent and apparently has 55% nourishing oils. It’s velvety and has certainly taken care of my rough heels. I guess it whips up into a foam in the shower – I might try it.

David Babaii for Wildaid – Bohemian Beach Spray. I have been through countless bottles of this little gem. This week, Farmers in Christchurch (department store) had a buy one/get one free thing going on – so I snapped up two more bottles. The first thing to say about this spray is that it smells gorgeous – like piña colada and you get summery whiffs of pineapple and coconut throughout the day.

My hair is super, super fine and has zippo body. Just my luck in life. This is the only product that gives me some boof (as in bouffant) and I can use it on wet or dry hair. It’s eco-friendly, cruelty-free and non-aerosol. No sulfates, parabens or nasty petrochemicals either. Here’s the description of the ingredients from the website: Globally sourced, Bohemian Beach Spray contains sea salt from the Dead Sea in Israel for naturally enhanced texture; mineral rich Volcanic Ash from the Vanuatu Islands of the South Pacific for increased volume; a trio of Blue Algae, Mango and Kiwi that keep hair thoroughly hydrated. Shea Butter, Jojoba Oil, Hemp Oil and Cupuacu Butter further aid moisture retention.

Ten percent of profits go to Wildaid (global wildlife conservation organization). I’ve had no dramas taking the spray all over the planet with me – Italy, France, Australia, Thailand, Malaysia, South Africa, Sweden (geez, I’ve travelled a fair bit this last year). The bottle hasn’t leaked or exploded. Awesome product and I don’t use hairspray anymore because this spray gives my hair enough body to hold.

Antipodes Juliet Skin-Brightening Gel Cleanser. Antipodes is a New Zealand brand of skincare. I’m fortunate living here because NZ has some amazing skincare brands. Antipodes is a favourite but the gel cleanser is my all-time fav cleanser. I don’t like the name I must say. Juliet? Skin-brightening? I don’t get the connection. Whatever. The smell is divine – green apples with a hint of cardamon. It’s a gel cleanser for normal to oily skin that very effectively whips off all your makeup.

New Zealand kiwi fruit and hibiscus flower extracts help to exfoliate the skin and reveal brighter, cleaner blemish-free skin. I will say that since using this cleanser (about three months now) I’ve had no breakouts and a less oily T-zone. Manuka honey saves this gel cleanser from leaving you with that tight feeling skin you can get with gel cleansers. Another ingredient is antioxidant-packed Vinanza Grape, which gives the cleanser a slightly brownish hue. The cost is NZ$39.00 but a little goes a long way.

And then in the front row of the photo above, L-R are:

Evolu Healing Lip Treatment. Evolu is another NZ brand, like Antipodes, that is derived from organic or botanical ingredients. This lip product boasts thyme and rosemary along with Manuka Honey. I use this every night and wake up to super soft lips. It’s the best lip conditioner or treatment I’ve ever used. LOVE.

Clarisonic Mia. I’ve waxed lyrical about my pink Clarisonic Mia many times. I’ve been using it for nearly 18 months now, every night, and you can read my review here. Once I’ve cleansed with the Antipodes gel cleanser, I do a second cleanse using the Clarisonic – either with Antipodes or The Body Shop Tea Tree Skin Clearing Facial Wash. The Body Shop cleanser I’ve used for years but only tend to use it if and when my skin is acting up.

Moreish Natural Skincare Salvation Balm. Moreish is yet another great NZ skincare range. The Salvation Balm is a bit like the legendary Aussie Lucas paw paw ointment, which I also use regularly. So possibly it should be in the photo above. But, for the moment, I’m using the Moreish balm because it is a great under-lipstick treatment. Before slicking on the lippie or gloss, I condition the lips with a bit of the balm. It’s also great for itchy bites and as a cuticle treatment. Basically anywhere there is dry skin. The Moreish range is based on Argan Oil and the balm contains argan, sweet almond, flaxseed, olive, coconut, jojoba, wheat germ and rosehip in a non-sticky Beeswax base.

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