Lately I’ve had more than a few friends asking me for recommendations about products that have natural or even organic formulas. Everyone seems to want to make the switch to simpler products with shorter ingredients lists, but they’re all worried about finding options that are as effective as what they normally use. To help give my friends a head start, I tested out a few popular natural products to see how they fared. Here are my picks:
Arangara Shower Gel
Soaps and frothy scrubs are the Achilles heel of my beauty routine. I.love.Bubbles. But most natural options don’t have the same lathering capabilities as inorganic options—with the exception of Arangara’s formula. When used with a loofah, this gel gets sudsy fast, and the major bonus is that the organic formula—I’m a fan of the purifying Tangerine+Fern scent—seriously hydrates my skin.
After I started color-treating my hair last summer, I knew I had an uphill battle to climb to try and get back my normally soft, glossy strands. Which is why I started embracing products that help bring back shine. EVOLVh’s vegan-friendly conditioner uses wild pansy, sweet clover and apricot extracts to revive lackluster strands. I’ve become a tad obsessed with the almost vanilla-y scent too, since it makes me feel like I’ve had a salon blowout.
Face masks are my absolute favorite skincare product. But it was only after I became a Birchbox subscriber that I ended up trying at-home face peels—and Juice Beauty’s peels are at the top of my list. If my skin is looking dull, I smooth on a thin layer of this mask after I’ve washed my face—and presto change-o, bright complexion! I especially like Juice’s peels because they’re much gentler than some of the chemical versions out there, which is perfect for my sensitive skin.
Argan oil is one of those ingredients that I never seem to stop hearing about—but for very good reason. Not only does this Moroccan power-player hydrate dry skin and smooth fine lines, it also helps lighten acne scars and discoloration with Vitamin E and a dose of serious essential fatty acids. Oils are also, somewhat counter-intuitively, great for oily complexions like mine. They help prevent your skin from cranking overtime to produce enough moisture—which means less buildup and fewer blackheads.
My hair rarely holds a curl or wave unless I use something to prep it, so before I reach for my curling iron I’ll spritz a texturizer on my strands first. This one from niche brand Captain Blankenship is at the top of my list not just because it adds just the right amount of grit to my hair, but because I don’t end up smelling like the ocean in the process. It uses a blend of rose geranium and palmarosa oils in its formula, which gives the spray a refreshingly bright scent.
I love lip crayons. Not just because they remind me of my halcyon days with Crayolas, but because they’re they easiest tool to use to add a shade to my lips.I’m particularly crushing on 100% Pure’s rose-hued Perfect Naked Berry since it’s made using pigments from cherry, strawberry, blueberry and other delicious fruits. It’s also packed with ultra-hydrating oils and plant butters, which means no chapped lips in sight.