The best lotions don't always smell the best, but we found three that work wonders on dry, Winter-affected skin and have a scent you won't be able to get enough of. Vanilla butter, mint, and Fraser fir: they're all here. See our top picks for products that leave skin smelling irresistible and feeling soft and supple in today's Beauty Review. On Kirbie: BCBGeneration top.
Cold weather means it's time to bring up your moisturizing routine 10 notches. If you're not a fan of heavy body creams, though, go with Jergens Daily Moisture ($6) this Winter. The formula seems lightweight, but it's not lacking in the hydration department. This powerhouse of a moisturizer instantly reverses dry, scaly, ashy skin without greasiness. Silk protein softens, and citrus brightens dull skin. But the real reason to choose this lotion this season over all others is the whopping 21-ounce size. It's large enough that you won't have to restock until next December.
If your skin is dry, flaky, ashy, or itchy, you're one of millions. Winter weather is rough on skin, even if this season has been milder than usual. There are a few easy ways to keep dry skin at bay: run a humidifier, take short lukewarm showers instead of baths, pat your body dry afterward, and apply body moisturizer while skin is still damp. Here are three saviors for seriously parched skin:
- Dermatologist-designed Sebamed Anti-Dry Hydrating Body Lotion ($23) has a pH value of 5.5, the same as your skin's acid mantle. (Think of it like the protective wrap over your skin's outermost layer.) This helps skin retain moisture longer. One application keeps our notoriously itch-prone legs happy all day long.
- Scaly skin stands no chance against Nivea Essentially Enriched lotion ($7.50). It goes on smoothly, absorbs quickly, and isn't greasy. While it's technically a body lotion, it does wonders when applied to hands just before bed, too.
- Vaseline Intensive Rescue Repairing Moisture lotion ($8.50) doesn't exactly roll off the tongue, but it is aptly named. The texture isn't too thick, and it's fragrance-free, too — making it an ideal choice for those who want to banish flaky skin without smelling like a flower shop.
Source: Flickr user Mondi
Sometimes I come across a beauty product and think, "I can see where they were going with that, but . . . no, definitely no." Whether it's because the science behind the product isn't really there or because the ingredients are just a little too gross to make them feasible, the following five products could all use a little bit of thoughtful redesign.
Hot cocoa with marshmallows is one of those things that can sound appealing even on a hot August night, but it's downright irresistible once the first flurries start falling. If you can't get enough of cocoa flavor, try Kiehl's Lip Gloss in Warm Milk Chocolate ($25) or Yes To Carrots Lip Gloss in Cocoa Loco ($6). If you'd rather smell like pure deliciousness, there's also Urban Decay Sparkling Edible Body Powder in Marshmallow ($29) and Victoria's Secret Cocoa Butter Sensuous Escape Body Lotion ($30), both guaranteed to make you good enough to eat. And if you love cocoa's great moisturizing and cleansing properties, this Cococare Cocoa Butter Complexion Bar ($2) is a sweet bargain.
Kiehl's always has great charity initiatives, and their latest endeavor lets you put a little modern art in your medicine cabinet while helping kids in distress. The company is collaborating with artist Jeff Koons to release an arty limited edition Creme de Corps moisturizer collection, from which 100 percent of sale profits up to $200,000 will go to the Koons Family Institute, an arm of the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children, which leads global initiatives to protect children from sexual exploitation and abduction. The cause is extremely worthwhile, and the packaging is lovely, so if you're a fan of Soy Milk and Honey Whipped Body Butter ($35) or Creme de Corps ($27), this is definitely the time to buy your next bottle.
Sue Sylvester may have all sorts of hilarious one-liners about Mr. Schuester's hair on Glee, but here's one tip that's so useful, it will surely stop the wisecracking Cheerios coach in her track suit. The handsome actor's hair has become quite the phenomenon, but Matthew Morrison, who plays the lovable Mr. Schue on the series, actually uses Lubriderm Body Lotion ($8) to tame his curly strands. He said:
They use a lot of jokes about my hair in the show — that's all natural juices and berries, people! Come on now! This ain't no ultraperm. Honestly, I use two squirts of Lubriderm every day. Like the skin lotion.
It all makes perfect sense to me, particularly for people with curly hair whose hair tends to frizz out of control. I've used a dab of lotion on my hair before to give it a little style when I've been in a pinch, too. What about you? Have you ever used lotion, or some other unconventional product, in your hair?
I really, really can't stand synthetic scents. That's why Alba's Kona Coffee Hawaiian After-Sun Lotion ($8) was a delight to use. I picked it up after accidentally getting a sunburn on my ankles (Bella can miss a spot, too), but quickly realized that it was much more versatile than its name would suggest.
It smells like a fresh cup of vanilla hazelnut roast — nice early in the morning when I'm still a little bleary-brained — and my skin soaked it up almost instantaneously. There was no standing around in my necessaries waiting endlessly for my lotion to dry, and the scent lingered pleasantly but unobtrusively on my skin until after lunch. If you're in the mood to luxuriate in lotion, this isn't the product for you. But on days when you need to get out the door, I highly recommend it. It's a light, caffeinated lift when you need one most.
One more reason to like H&M: in just a couple of weeks, the Swedish fast-fashion chain is introducing a line of body care made with organic ingredients. Ecocert, the European certification organization, has given its green stamp of approval to the range of shower gels, body scrubs, lotions, hand creams, and lip balm. As you'd expect from H&M, it's also affordable. Body care products each cost less than $5, with only a toiletry bag reaching the $7.95 mark.
Delivered in recyclable packaging, the paraben- and phthalate-free products incorporate organic ingredients such as apple juice, sunflower seed oil, jojoba, and essential oils. And bunny lovers will be glad to know that whether during the development process or in the finished state, the products are not tested on animals. An organic-based body care line at a decent price? How Swede it is.
One of the frustrating things about some eco-friendly products is the often-high price. Yes, we'd all love to go green, but it's difficult to pay $20 for body lotion when Curel can be had for a small fraction of that cost.
Enter Seed, a new line of natural body care that's free of parabens, preservatives, phthalates, artificial colors, and animal ingredients. (Whew.) The three-item lineup — body lotion, body soaps, and shampoo bar — uses grape seed oil and extract to deliver antioxidants to skin. The seed theme goes further with the body bar, which incorporates seeds from fruits such as pomegranate, strawberry, and apricot to gently exfoliate. The body lotion is moisturizing but not at all greasy, making it a good eco-friendly option for dry skin. Best of all, Seed comes at a reasonable price — about $20 for a pack of three lotions or six-pack of soaps.