I've been a fan of The Body Shop
for years, although I must admit I was originally enamored with the delectable scents of the body butters and went along collecting two (or three or four) per season. Eventually I learned more about the company's mission to produce high-quality products with natural, community-trade supported ingredients from all over the world, defend human rights, and protect the environment, and thought I'd expand my Body Shop horizons if for no other reason than to support this altruistic company. And now I'm very glad I did! Amongst other great finds, The Body Shop's Vitamin E Skin Care Line
has given my skin a dewy glow without killing my pocketbook or hurting the environment! The Body Shop claims that the Vitamin E set of products 'minimizes fine lines,' and although I can't say that I've noticed my crows feet and laugh lines fading away, I've still seen a suppleness and glow to my skin that hasn't existed since my teen years.
The line has 20 products to choose from, ranging from lip care to soap bars to face mist to eye cream. I've been sticking to a pretty solid regimen of the Cream Exfoliator
and Cream Cleanser
to get started. The Cream Exfoliator is not only gritty enough to make me feel like I'm really sloughing away my dead skin and impurities, but is also packed with moisturizers like wheat germ oil and shea butter to replace any moisture that's being whisked away. The primarily exfoliators are jojoba micro–beads, which are a nice natural inclusion. I love that the Cream Cleanser is super gentle and has a lot of moisturizers in it as well, including wheat germ oil (the richest natural source of vitamin E), soy oil and shea butter.
This is followed up by one of my favorites, the Illuminating Moisture Cream
. This moisturizer comes in a little jar, and the cream actually shimmers. It's not a sparkly, glittery formula, but serves just enough iridescence to give my skin a subtle glow every day. Vitamin E and shea butter keep my skin moisturized all day long without being greasy or thick, and super-fine mica is the ingredient that keeps me shimmering.
Although the Body Shop recommends that I apply the Eye Cream
in the morning and before bed, I find it's a little greasy to apply under my make up. So before bed, I smooth on a small droplet of this sweet smelling concoction that uses rose hip oil (which is high in fatty acids and great to repair the moisture barrier in the thin skin below my eyes), revitalizing algae extract, and the ever present shea butter. I like that this cream is light. I have begun to notice small white dots forming in my under eye area, and after speaking to a dermatologist, think that they are oil deposits. There is very little that I can do about them, but loading on oil-laden creams and heavy make-up isn't helping the problem, so the fact that this formula feels light despite its moisturizing properties its a huge bonus in my book.
Last but not least, my regimen ends with the Body Shop's Vitamin E Nourishing Night Cream
. This cream is heavier than the Illuminating Moisture Cream, thanks to the addition of glycerin and cocoa butter (but it also includes shea butter and Vitamin E, of course). It's basically heavy on the skin conditioning agents, and includes an extra dose of Vitamin E, which the Body Shop explains is to capitalize on its antioxidant power to fight free radicals while you sleep. I also like the inclusion of Myristyl Myristate
in the Nourishing Night Cream.
Although they are not part of my daily regimen, I'm also a fan of the Gentle Facial Cleansing Wipes
. Whether I'm traveling or just too exhausted to go through my entire make-up removal and face washing process at night, these wipes work well for whisking off make up quickly or freshening up after the gym. And thanks to all the moisturizers filling each towelette, they aren't drying like most other wipes I've tried!
All of the products are obviously loaded with Vitamin E, the powerhouse antioxidant that helps protect cells from free radicals by providing them with a needed electron, and provides moisturizing properties as well. They all utilize shea butter to soften the skin, and the website makes note that this specific ingredient "provides a rural community of women with regular work and income," as part of the Body Shop's community trade mission. Unfortunately, there are quite a few parabens
to preserve the formulas, and lots of other additives (Phenoxyethanol
, Disodium EDTA
) that make this moisturizer a lot less 'natural' than the Body Shop would leave you to believe. The Illuminating Moisture Cream and Eye Cream are the worst culprits of them all, but since they yield such great results, I feel that the benefits outweigh the costs.
Ingredients in Vitamin E Cream Exfoliator:
Water, Glycerin, Octyl Palmitate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Polyethylene, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Oil, Sorbitan Stearate, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Benzyl Alcohol, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Tocopheryl Acetate, Phenoxyethanol, Carbomer, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Jojoba Esters, Sodium Hydroxide, Fragrance, Methylparaben, Disodium EDTA, Citronellol, Butylparaben, Ethylparaben, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone, Isobutylparaben, Propylparaben, Linalool, Geraniol, Limonene, Citral, Eugenol, Farnesol, Red 30, Red 4
Ingredients in Vitamin E Cream Cleaser:
Water, Octyl Palmitate, Isohexadecane, Sorbitol, Dimethicone, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Sorbitan Stearate, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Oil, Benzyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Cetearyl Alcohol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Methylparaben, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Fragrance, Propylparaben, Sodium Hydroxide, Disodium EDTA, Citronellol, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone, Linalool, Geraniol, Limonene, Citral, Eugenol, Farnesol
Ingredients in Vitamin E Illuminating Moisture Cream:
Water, Isopropyl Palmitate, Sorbitol, Shea Butter (butyrospermum Parkii), Triethanolamine, Beeswax, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Carbomer, Phenoxyethanol, Steareth-2, Steareth-21, Tocopheryl Acetate, Methylparaben, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance, Butylparaben, Ethylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Propylparaben, Mica, Titanium Dioxide, Red No 4
Ingredients in Vitamin E Eye Cream:
Water, Glycerin, Cyclomethicone, Methyl Glucose Sesquistearate, Rosa Cnina (Dog Rose) Hips Oil, Methyl Gluceth-20, Panthenol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Saccharide Isomerate, Phenoxyethanol, Barium Sulfate, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea )Butter, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Sodium Hyaluronate, Algae Extract, Methylparaben, Sodium Hydroxide, Dimethicone, Butylparaben, Ethylparaben, Disodium EDTA, Isobutylparaben, Propylparaben, Mica, Titanium Dioxide
Ingredients in Vitamin E Nourishing Night Cream:
Water, Glycerin, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Oil, Dimethicone, PPG-2 Myristyl Ether Propionate, Cyclomethicone, Stearyl Alcohol, Cetearyl Alcohol, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Butter, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Cetearyl Octanoate, Myristyl Myristate, Panthenol, Benzyl Alcohol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Carbomer, Methylparaben, Phenoxyethanol, Propylparaben, Fragrance,Sodium Hydroxide, Disodium EDTA, Talc, Manganese Violet, Iron Oxides