Naturally beautiful or expensively trashing the planet?

I’ve had ‘laughter lines’ since I was about 20 so now I’m in my mid 30s they are definitely here to stay. I remind myself that beauty is far more than skin deep, but that hasn’t stopped me from trying to smooth them a little.

When I had disposable income I indulged myself with Clarins products, but the prices kept on rising and the freebie samples kept on shrinking. Then I had children (and hence no disposable income) and I spread the £3 gloop that is Waitrose Baby Bottom Butter on my face – it once sold out because so many people were using it as face cream. It is very hydrating, but also very heavy – great for dry patches but not for everyday moisturising. The smell also transports me back to nappy changing, which is not the best for feeling pampered.

Now, I try to balance my dreams of ever youthful skin with my eco passion. I don’t want to buy big brands with excess ‘luxury’ packaging designed to make the tiny product look larger. I’m happy to spend a little more than my ‘bottom butter’ days, but still find anything in excess of £20 too much, whatever the promises on the jar.

My two favourite products are both wonderfully natural and eco-friendly, but highly effective. Both are single ingredients, and both need to be extra-virgin, organic and cold-pressed.

Firstly, coconut oil (Fairtrade please like this one from Akamuti). This stuff is a wonderful face and body moisturiser if you have dry skin, and is also great on eczema, cradle cap, athlete’s foot, thrush and as a pre-wash hair treatment. It softens the good old wrinkles and leaves skin well hydrated.

My power serum is pure rosehip seed oil. Just a drop before moisturiser, morning and evening, is improving my skin dramatically. I used to love Clarin’s Double Serum, but not its £60 price tag. Rosehip oil gives a similar radiance, smoothness, light glow and even laughter line reduction. Is rich in omega-3 and 6 fatty acids as well as Vitamin C. In fact, it is an ingredient in the Double Serum, referred to as musk rose seed oil, it’s the same stuff! However, in the Double Serum it is diluted in petroleum-based mineral oil.

Pure rosehip oil is meant to be amazing for scars and stretch marks too. Try this one from Fushi for good quality but reasonable price (£14.50 and it will last ages).

My laughter lines may have softened a little, but they are inevitably here to stay. More importantly, my skin looks healthy, I’m not wasting cash and I’m not trashing the planet in order to pursue an impossible goal. I’m still smiling too.

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