European bits: Weleda & Nivea

One of the things I really love about Austria, apart from the rich history, stunning styles of architecture, and of course, dreamy accents, is the grocery stores. I know, peculiar, but for the most part all of the ones I visited were quite neat and classy. There is just something about clean cut spaces with varieties of extremely well organized bits & bobs in aesthetically pleasing packaging, that is so soothing and appealing to me. Not to mention the soft, warm scent coming off their freshly baked bread rolls.

So you can see how I may have been in somewhat of a trance as I traipsed around the store one day, enjoying the fancy varieties of pasta and teas. Upon coming unto the lotions & potions beauty section, I spotted a Weleda display and bee-lined to it. Knowing next to nothing about Weleda, I am not sure why I felt that I could not go back to Canada without anything from them. Perhaps it was the packaging, or the seductive German on the front (which of course, I could not understand),  or the wild rose line that tempted me (since this, I could understand).

After some helpful translations from Seb, I picked up the Wild Rose Smoothing Day & Night Creams, since my Body Shop moisturizers were reaching their end.  I am so very glad I did. Not only do they come in a little tin tube (seemingly common in Europe, but not so much in North America) but they have been doing some seriously awesome work on my skin.

Currently battling with hormonal acne, treatments have left my skin – particularly around my jaw line – dry as a dessert. I did not really know how to deal with that, since I have always had oily skin, and was afraid that moisturizers might just increment my breakouts. The Body Shop's Vitamin E range did a decent job, but after trying these, I feel like I finally understand what real moisture is.

They apply nicely like a cream, but after a small massage they begin to feel more like deep oils; which I initially felt really weird about. After a quick look at the ingredients I understood why it felt more like an oil:

Seriously impressive amount of natural oils! I have never been one to look particularly for natural skin care, but this has been really working well for me. They also have a bit of a medicinal/herbal scent which took a little while to get used to but it has grown on me (fortunately Seb also likes it!).

On the Nivea Cream bit, I mostly got it because my Zodiac sign is on it, Capricorn! Perhaps I should be ashamed that my consumerist side falls for gimmicky marketing, but there are always uses for Nivea Cream ;)

Ahhh I just love having things around me in German. It is my favorite language! Maybe one day I will become trilingual.



Koress Part II: On Lip Butters

I, like many others, am a lip balm hoarder, for it is the elixir of the gods. What would I do if I left the house without one? I don't even know, that never happens.

Out of my small mountain of lip balms, these Korres Lip Butters definitely reign (although I do have an unopened Nuxe Reve de Miel, waiting for my mountain to lessen somewhat). They are that reliable friend, who will always pull through when needed, and look good while doing so.

The packaging is delightfully minimalistic yet fun, and incredibly satisfying to look at or hold (yes, I find pretty products satisfying to hold).

When I first gave into temptation and bought the mango one from a sale on Feel Unique, I was extremely pleased and surprised to discover that these really pack a moisture-filled punch. They feel very plush (whatever that means), glide on nicely, moisturize, and give a light tint of colour that looks and wears great. As a bonus, they smell delicious!

The only downside as I see it would be that they come in a pot, where you have to dip your finger in to get the product, as it might be too unhygienic for some. Personally, this doesn't really deter me (if anything, my Immunology education has made me less of a germophobe). Though obviously not suited for application in the midst of public transport, I find these great to keep around the house or in my bag, as they seriously aid in painful dry lip situations.



Korres Part I: On Body Butters

Korres Jasmine Body Butter, Japanese Rose Body Milk, Japanese Rose Body Butter

If there is something I have a surplus of, aside from kitty litter and soap bars (thanks mom!), is butters. Not the delicious edible kind, but body and lip butters. Even though I am aware of my surplus of moisturizing items (I don't even have dry skin), over the past few months I have managed to obtain even more, particularly from Korres.

I was introduced to Korres by a dear, dear, enabling friend of mine, who let me take a sniff at  the beautiful Korres Jasmine Body Butter that lay on her vanity. A sniff turned to two, two sniffs turned to three, and thus, an obsession was born.

Seriously, the scents of these products are heavenly, even their lip butters smell good (but more on that later).

Not only is their scent amazing, but their packaging is aesthetically pleasing as well as functional – they even include a very thorough ingredients list, containing what they have, as well as highlighting what they don't.

Luxuriously moisturizing on the skin, and leaving a subtle scent behind, these are definitely some of my favorite creams & lotions. The butters are thick, yet spreadable, conveniently come in a squeezy tube, and do not transfer onto bed sheets, while the milks are their lighter sisters, ideal for when you are short on time.