Tuesday, November 23, 2010

All-Natural Product of the Week: Befine Night Cream

In my ninth month of pregnancy, I am fighting the urge to slather redness-reducing products rich in retinol all over my face for the sake of my unborn baby. I have been SO good this entire pregnancy, switching out my favorite daily moisturizer, Mark For Goodness Face With SPF 30, for a paraben-free alternative from Physicians Formula that has SPF 50 (a bit excessive maybe) AND is tinted, so I can cover up the blemishes brought on by my pregnancy hormones!

But as the seasons change, I find it's necessary for a night cream, and the best all-natural one I've found is this one from Befine, which has rice bran proteins that promise to aid in the formation of collagen and improve elasticity, as well as rice bran oil, which is rich in vitamin E (a great scar/redness reducer) and cocoa, which contains caffeine for increased circulation and a naturally rosier complexion. The formula is light and fragrance-free; the only question is where to purchase. You can pay full price at the Befine Web site for $30, or you could shop around on Amazon, or check out a local discount retailer. I found the stuff at the Cosmetics Market for less than $10, but be warned, what's on their shelves was usually in a warehouse or on someone else's shelf first, so use it right away in case it's close to expiring!

And if anyone knows of a good paraben-free retinol cream, please suggest in the comments section.

Monday, November 15, 2010

All-Natural Product Of The Week: St. Ive's Body Wash

I have had a love affair with St. Ive's Creamy Vanilla Body Wash since I was in high school and am so impressed that this company has evolved with the times and now produces this product without endocrine-disrupting parabens and phthalates. Moreover, it's retained its fabulously subtle vanilla scent and does the job of moisturizing and cleansing at the same time. In an ample-sized 18-ounce bottle for less than $5, this is an absolute steal. My only gripe is they no longer make a companion body lotion!

Where there's good news, there's more: St. Ive's Oatmeal & Shea Butter Body Wash is even more emollient and incredibly soothing. I discovered this body wash last year when my eczema acted up in the fall and I couldn't justify spending twice as much on Aveeno's Active Naturals Body Wash when they have roughly the same ingredients and Aveeno products have never really done the trick for me. With regular use, this cleared up the itchy red patches in no time and kept my skin calm throughout the winter. I haven't tried the body lotion, but based on a few reviews I've seen, it's the body wash bomb. As soon as my vanilla wash runs out, I'll be picking up a bottle of Oatmeal & Shea butter to get me through the winter, and a bottle of that lotion, as well.