Month: December 2016

Shea Terra Argan Oil

[Note: The product in this post is sponsored, and all views and opinions here are my own.]

This is an extremely belated post, but around the middle of this year, I received a bottle of Shea Terra’s amazing Argan Oil from Marissa of prettyfreshshop.com to review!

In this post, I’ll cover a bit about the brand itself, Shea Terra Organics, as well as the properties of argan oil and my personal thoughts on the Shea Terra Argan Oil product itself!

Shea Terra Argan Oil
What is Shea Terra Organics About?  
The vision behind the skincare company, Shea Terra Organics, is to create a viable market for Africa’s amazing quality products, and to ensure not only that customers are getting products straight from the source, but also that the people behind it are treated fairly for their work.

It cuts out the need for a middleman to distribute these products and then sell African skincare products like shea butter and argan oil at ridiculously sky high prices while the creators themselves are earning much less! So what Shea Terra has done is to reduce artificially high prices for customers, while ensuring job stability for communities in African regions.

When Shea Terra first began about a decade or so ago, argan oil was pretty much unheard of outside of Africa. So as you can imagine, Shea Terra’s mission has been to deliver these relatively unknown African beauty secrets to the rest of the world, while making sure that the people creating the Shea Terra products are able to sustain and support themselves.

It’s a great initiative and these efforts to give back to society while offering new, quality, organic products to customers around the world is what really sets Shea Terra apart from any other beauty brand in the world.

Shea Terra Argan Oil
Shea Terra Argan Oil Review
Some companies will dilute argan oil. So just because something says argan oil on the tin, it doesn’t necessary mean it is pure argan oil you’re getting.

But with Shea Terra’s Argan Oil, it’s 100% organic argan oil from Morocco.

Shea Terra Argan Oil
How do I know? You can tell from its appearance. It’s pure (or at least very close to it) because the oil is shimmery, golden, and clear. If it’s cloudy and kind of opaque, then you know it’s been diluted and not 100%, and you’re probably getting ripped off if it says “100% pure argan oil”. But it’s not the case here, so you don’t have to worry about getting conned. There’s no water, no dilution, just pure, amazing argan oil from Morocco.

Argan oil is known for its high Vitamin A & Vitamin E content and squalene, which makes it a great anti-aging product, for it quickly brings back the skin’s elasticity, and repairs the skin. It would be recommended to use a drop or two of Shea Terra argan oil on your face at night if you have concerns as to preventing aging skin, or taking care of dry skin. Argan oil improves the skin by reducing wrinkles and sagging, while at the same time, hydrating and softening the skin. So argan oil will give you nice, youthful, soft skin. All this while, for many decades, it’s been one of Morocco’s best kept natural beauty secrets.

Honestly, this stuff is like liquid gold, almost, for your skin. It’s pure, untouched, and contains no alcohol or additives, or fragrances.

The smell at first was unusual, but like most oils, the smell of argan oil is calming. All oils have a scent of their own, and they are always pretty recognisable, e.g. the smell of jojoba oil. The closest thing I can compare the smell of argan oil to is olive oil, but a little different. The bottle of argan oil describes it as: “the aroma of this product is due to its unprocessed, unrefined nature, and therefore is natural”. Yep. No artificial aromas or chemical smells here.

Shea Terra Argan Oil
A Quick User’s Guide to Argan Oil    
Shea Terra Argan Oil is also non-clogging, and non-greasy, so you don’t need to worry about it clogging up your pores or greasing your hair. It might appear too oily at first (key word: appear), but that’s because it takes several minutes (maybe 10-20 minutes) for the argan oil to be absorbed. It isn’t one of those instantly absorbed kind of products you get out there.

If you’re worried about the greasiness or oiliness on your face or hair, I’ll recommend applying just a tinyyy drop to see how much you need for your face, body, or hair. If you feel like you need more you can always top up!

As for hair, just add a little argan oil to the palm of your hand, put your palms and fingers together (get the argan oil distributed evenly) and kind of massage it through the ends of your hair and allow it to air dry.

Personally, I think it’s best to use argan oil before I sleep (because it’s calming and soothing) or to use it on the ends of my hair when I wake up so that there’s time for the oil to be absorbed before I leave the house! Also, the argan oil helps to ensure that my hair looks lively and not flat. The argan oil also helps to reduce the tangles in my hair and also soften and tame the hair just a little (no more bad hair days!).

Most importantly I think for me, is to condition and care for my hair and body with certified organic argan oil, not something with nasty, hard-to-pronounce chemicals in it!

Shea Terra Argan Oil
How to Purchase Shea Terra Argan Oil       
Gifting this holiday season has never been easier!

For the month of December, prettyfreshshop.com is offering free local shipping (in Singapore) on all orders, meaning you can shop for as much skincare, bath and beauty products without having to pay a dime to get it delivered to your doorstep!

And if you want to try out this Shea Terra Argan oil, or any other Shea Terra product, prettyfreshshop.com offers worldwide shipping! Yay.

Never A Dull Moment

Today I purchased Origins’ face polisher, Never A Dull Moment (SGD $59) from BHG departmental store at Bugis Junction. 

Never A Dull Moment

I tried the product out yesterday evening at the Origins’ Ion Orchard store and instantly fell in love with how the scrub made my skin feel so moisturised and supple after.

This is the first time I’m giving Origins a try, and yesterday evening I purchased some beauty gift sets for my relatives’ family whom I will be visiting in NZ and spending Christmas with. They’re around my age and I’ve only met them a few times when I was younger. So hopefully they will like the presents I’ve picked up!

Here’s a breakdown of my preliminary thoughts on Never A Dull Moment. I feel that it’s best I review it right after I’ve used it, so the feeling is still fresh in my mind. And it’s unlikely that my opinion of the product will change after several weeks or months! I usually won’t change my mind about a product.

Never A Dull Moment

Scrub
The product is very much like a wet, fruity, very slightly sticky paste. It feels kind of like a banana-mango puree of sorts, but in terms of looks, it’s a little translucent rather than opaque.

Texture
As for the beads, the size is small but not too small – while the packaging says to avoid the eye area, I was kinda like “meh”, shrugged my shoulders and just applied the face polisher to every part of my face and scrubbed in small, circular motions. The beads aren’t too small which is a good thing, ‘cos if you get a scrub with very fine beads, you might find them getting stuck in your eye and it will be VERY painful and uncomfortable to wash out (always happens to me, sadly). So the bead size is fine. The beads in the scrub are made from ground up apricot and mango seeds, so it’s completely natural and non-synthetic. I noted that there aren’t a lot of beads in the scrub, but just enough to do a nice, mild scrub like a mini treat for your face! 

Never A Dull Moment
Ingredient list (above)

Smell
The fragrance comes across as pretty strong and fruity – a natural and sweet kind of tropical fruity smell, not super artificial. (There’s also a small tinge of an herbal kind of smell.) Think of the smell of pineapples, bananas, and mangos being blitzed, that’s what it smells like. The product contains papaya extracts, but Never A Dull Moment doesn’t have a papaya smell to. The smell fades off a little after you’ve washed your face, so it doesn’t linger on your hands or face.

Level of Cleansing
After washing my face, it didn’t feel 100% completely clean.  Personally (it might differ for others), I felt like the face polisher only removed about 85% of the grime and dead skin cells off my face. As for my makeup, I felt that it was more effective at removing my makeup than my dead skin – maybe 96% of my makeup was removed.

Aftereffects
After using the product, my face looked like the makeup had mostly/pretty much been removed from my face. Also, when I touched my face right after, it was nice and soft, and hydrated. Not dry and parched – like how my face feels if I use too drying a facial cleanser that’s unsuitable for my skin type.

For Never A Dull Moment, I would agree that it is suitable for all skin types, whether you have dry, normal, oily, sensitive or combination skin. My face didn’t feel oily or sticky. Another thing about Never A Dull Moment is that my face didn’t look more dewy afterwards, but my skin did look kind of brighter. It did feel very hydrated and soft. If you want something that does the job of cleaning AND hydrating AND brightening, you probably don’t need to look further. Just remember, this ISN’T a heavy duty facial cleanser. You probably could pair Never A Dull Moment with a weekly face mask.

It’s quite a gentle facial polisher, and it didn’t sting my face or burn or anything. A while after I did notice my cheeks and forehead were a little bit red, but it could have been because I was a bit too aggressive in washing my face, I’m never as careful and gentle as the facialist. Anyway, my skin has always been quite sensitive, but it definitely didn’t leave my skin hurting or stinging or irritated.

Never A Dull Moment
Never A Dull Moment
Before (above) and After (below)

Never A Dull Moment
Would I recommend this?
Admittedly, the Never A Dull Moment is a little on the expensive side, so it would be hard for me to say whether I would/wouldn’t recommend it. I did contemplate purchasing online, only to realise (1) Origins doesn’t ship to Singapore, and (2) It’s around $41 (SGD) online so throw in shipping costs, it would probably work out to be around the same price.

Ultimately, it really depends on how much you like it and whether you find it worth paying for.

There’s 125ml worth of product, which can last for at least a few months.

For me at least, this is probably the most $$$ I’ve spent on a facial cleanser.

Never A Dull Moment
Personally, I prefer another of the cleansers that I’ve tried from Origins (as a sample), which is Checks and Balances, which is really pepperminty (like a more solid feeling toothpaste texture), fresh smelling cleanser. Is very, very frothy and creamy! I felt that that one gives a deeper cleanse, and also an uplifting feel afterwards. It’s so refreshing. As for Never A Dull Moment, my face felt like it needed a bit more scrubbing/exfoliating/deep cleansing to BE clean. Basically my face didn’t feel 100% clean after, but it did feel moisturised (but not oily) and not dry at all, and I’m pretty glad that it removed most of my makeup.

I would recommend Never A Dull Moment to someone who:

– Is of any skin type;
– Wants a gentle facial cleanser;
– Doesn’t want too tiny beads in a scrub;
– Doesn’t want too many beads in a scrub;
– Likes a light face exfoliator;
– Likes fruity, tropical scents;
– Wants to try Origins;
– Wants brighter, more even-looking and radiant skin; and
– Is OK with spending $59 on a facial scrub!

After much thought and reflecting on Origins’ Never A Dull Moment, I feel like I should go pick up Checks and Balances at an Origins counter instead. I simply like that one much better!

Never A Dull Moment

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