FOOD FOR YOUR FACE

Images courtesy of Lush Cosmetics

Get ready to winterize and personalize your skin-care regiment with natural, handmade beauty offerings from Lush Cosmetics. As the U.K.-based Lush continues to celebrate its store opening in The Westchester, here are some favorite, tested products that are worth the trip:

YOUNGER SKIN

“It’s never too early to start practicing good skin-care routines,” says assistant manager Barry Nelson of Rockland County. Starting at age 13, beauty chicks should begin to use the Herbalism facial cleanser ($13 for a quarter-pound), designed for oily, sensitive and pimple-prone skin, he says. With China clay to draw out oil, ground almonds and rice bran to exfoliate, calming anti-inflammatory sage, chamomile, marigold and rosemary to revive and nettle powder to detoxify, it’s a fantastic cleanser that leaves skin with a soft matte finish. Oil be gone.

“I love (the) Tea Tree Water facial toner,” says Barry, adding that you can use the vegan formula multiple times a day to freshen up. It’s great for clogged pores, yields quick results in reducing redness and irritation (a cold-weather-induced problem for many) and has grapefruit and antiseptic juniper berries, which smell softly energizing. ($8.95 for 100 ml/ $19.95 for 250 ml.)

Vanishing cream ($39.95) is a light moisturizer with nourishing organic jojoba and grape seed oil; smoothing shea butter; witch hazel, which acts as an astringent; and honey, rose and lavender water to control your skin’s oiliness and soothe sensitive areas.

Oatifix fresh face mask ($6.95) is a delicious dessert – for the face. It’s a sweet, balanced mixture of oatmeal (to soothe), banana (to soften skin), ground almonds (to exfoliate) and vanilla. “And,” Barry says, “all of our masks actually expire, because they’re made with natural, real ingredients so you need to store (them) in the fridge for up to three months, but you’ve got to use (them).”

THE PRIME OF LIFE

Stress and just daily living show on the skin so clean up your act with the Fresh Farmacy facial cleanser ($11 for a quarter-pound.) It’s a pale-pink cleansing bar for skin that gets sore, red and blotchy (hello, winter). It cleanses with calamine, while hints of chamomile and rose calm.

“I like to keep my toner in the refrigerator so you get that cold spritz,” Barry recommends as he sprays his face with Lush’s Breath of Fresh Air facial toner ($8.95 for 100 ml/ $19.95 for 250 ml). The toner combines hydrating water from the Pacific Ocean, rejuvenating rosemary, nutrient-rich seaweed absolute, aloe vera and softening rose. Take it everywhere for a refreshing “me” moment.

Lush’s Imperialis moisturizer for daily use targets combination skin with a blend of smoothing olive oil, shea butter, cocoa butter and glycerine. “The core of Lush products,” Barry says, “is that we believe whenever you take something away from the skin, you must add something back. … If you use a moisturizer every day but don’t use something to get rid of excess oil, it actually affects how your skin regulates the oil it’s producing.” So the formula also combines oil-regulating lavender to encourage dry skin to produce more oil on its own too. Imperialis tiger lily, sweet violet, mullein leaf and St. John’s wort soothe. For $23.95, this might be the most affordable moisturizer that actually does the most for you.

Meanwhile, Lush’s Silky Underwear Dusting Powder ($7.95) might be your new best friend. You can wear it with panties, under your arms or around the bosom, where many ladies also struggle with perspiration and odor. The powder – made with cocoa butter, cornstarch, China clay and lightly sweet-smelling vetivert and jasmine – leaves skin properly moisturized and you feeling fresh and confident day and night.

THE SILVER SET

Angels on Bare Skin facial cleanser ($12.50 for quarter pound) is a clay-based deep exfoliating cleanser. It blends ground almonds to exfoliate and polish, glycerine to help skin retain water and rose and lavender to balance oil production and leave a delicate fragrance.

One of the most popular items in the store is Lush’s Full of Grace solid facial serum bar ($13.95), which like all Lush bars of soap is sold in take-home bags at the counter. Though designed for sensitive and mature skin, it’s so fabulous that everyone should use it, Lush at The Westchester employees say. Full of Grace attacks dry, cracked skin and adds elasticity with murumuru butter and almond oil. It smells like a garden in bloom with anti-inflammatory chamomile blue, rose and Tagetes oils. But perhaps the most creative ingredient is portobello mushrooms, which fight free radicals, reduce inflammation and minimize the appearance of fine lines – seriously.

The Gorgeous moisturizer ($89.95) is such a nourishing treat to apply, especially for women seeking a lighter moisturizer that won’t clog pores. “Men can totally use it, too,” Barry says. “All of our products are actually not gender specific. … no strange ingredients and no artificial scents.” Coconut oil maintains the skin’s elasticity while neroli oil regenerates cells and lemon, orange and pineapple juices tone and brighten skin. Antioxidant-rich and organic cold-pressed avocado, grape seed, wheat germ and evening primrose oils are packed with replenishing vitamins and rejuvenating properties. “Cold-pressed is really important, because that’s the oils’ purest form.”

Anti-aging effects are an unusual quality to find in a purifying mask, but behold The Sacred Truth face mask ($6.95), your answer to combating aging with enzymatic papaya that cleans away dirt and removes dead skin cells. Barry, who calls this a favorite, says you can use this two times a week, even more depending on your skin’s history. Yogurt and honey soften while shea butter, coconut oil and evening primrose oil “plump up” the skin to combat wrinkles. Fresh eggs tighten and hold it all together and a concoction of energizing ginseng, wheat germ and green tea get rid of free radicals.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions and for samples when you visit Lush at The Westchester in White Plains. You can also rent out the store, which has a killer sound system, for your own beauty bash for $150.

For more, visit lush.com

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