Who says essential beauty and everyday maintenance has to be boring?
Today, we celebrate the unsung heroes of the beauty world – the ones keeping our hair fresh, our skin protected and our bodies clean – among others.
To help you on your quest to discover some of the best essential beauty products on the market, BD has put the below to the test.
Editor's pick: Head & Shoulders Supreme 0% Purify & Volume Shampoo and Conditioner - Aja
What it is: A shampoo and conditioner range with advanced anti-dandruff technology and no added parabens, silicones or colourants.
My experience: This new range from Head & Shoulders has worked wonders on my flaky scalp this month. The cooler drop in weather has wreaked havoc on my hair, and this shampoo and conditioner has helped deeply clean and nourish without any added nasties. Supreme 0% taps into the efficacy of piroctone olamine, to target dryness and irritation and promote quality hair growth. The heavenly scented formula is also enriched with vitamins A and E and antioxidants thanks to the addition of argan oil, which boosts softness and shine without greasiness.
Editor's pick: Herbal Essences bio:renew Argan Oil of Morocco Shampoo and Conditioner - Aja
What it is: A Shampoo and conditioner formulated to repair damaged hair.
My experience: Like I mentioned, my hair and scalp have been through the wringer this month, and I have been loving using the Herbal Essences bio:renew Argan Oil of Morocco range to help repair that damage. It is enriched with histidine, sea kelp and aloe to help remove the build up of free radicals and revive dull, lifeless hair after every wash. My hair is left smooth and feels like I’ve just been to the hairdresser – not to mention the amazing scent that lingers!
Medik8 Advanced Day Total Protect™ - Sam
What it is: An anti-ageing day cream that includes sun protection, a pollution shield and blue light defence.
My experience: Without knowing the multitude of important protectant ingredients in this product it is a great every day, easy to use day moisturiser. With the added benefits of sun, pollution and blue light protectant it becomes an absolute must have product. I find the smell of this product unobtrusive and the texture silky and light. The cream absorbs easily and I can wear makeup on top with no issues. I definitely prefer this all in one product to the alternative of using several different lotions and serums to ensure the same level of day to day skin protection.
Carmex® Original Flavour Lip Balm Tube - Sam
What it is: A moisturising lip balm suitable for daily use and all seasons.
My experience: Carmex has been a staple in my work desk drawer, handbag and gym bag for years now. I prefer tube over stick lip balms as I like to lather my lips and the tube let’s me get a lot of product on quickly. The super silky formula keeps my lips nourished and hydrated even in the depths of winter and I wouldn’t leave home without it.
sebamed Liquid Face and Body Wash - Deborah
What it is: A wash that deeply cleanses pores without causing the dryness or irritation associated with regular soap.
My experience: This product exceeded all my expectations of a sensitive skin product, from scent to texture. The product had a pleasant smell and the texture wasn’t too runny and felt smooth when lathered on my skin. I love that this comes in a pump bottle making it super easy to dispense and use. This wash left my skin feeling silky smooth without stripping it of its natural oils. This product is definitely a shower essential!
Weleda Salt Toothpaste - Deborah
What it is: A toothpaste formulated with natural sodium bicarbonate to neutralise harmful plaque acids and prevent the build-up of plaque.
My experience: I was quite excited to try this product as I have never used a natural toothpaste before and was quite pleasantly surprised. Unlike the toothpaste typically being white, this one is a brown salty looking paste and due to the natural ingredients the toothpaste doesn’t foam. However my teeth felt so clean after brushing, the gentle mineral abrasive particles removed the build-up of plaque and gave my teeth a polished feel, with the myrrh and krameria ingredients added to promote health in the oral cavity. It doesn’t have much of an after-taste which I love and is free of fluorides, synthetic flavours, colourants and preservatives.
Saya Skincare Renew Serum - Caitlin
What it is: A powerful serum with a complex of 15 unique botanicals, including natural retinol alternative bakuchiol.
My experience: This was my first time using a serum that was a natural retinol alternative and what a difference it has made to my skin! I applied six drops of the serum to my face, morning and night. Over a few weeks I noticed my skin has started looking more plump, hydrated and overall youthful. The key ingredient bakuchiol offers the same benefits as retinol without the irritating side effects and what I love is that it’s formulated with kakadu plum and other botanicals that help keep my skin nourished and hydrated throughout the day. This is certainly a product that I will be incorporating into my skincare routine.
mesoestetic mesoprotech melan 130 pigment control - Eleni
What it is: An SPF that’s strong enough to protect pigmented skin against further damage, as well as including ingredients to prevent the appearance of future sunspots and visible signs of premature ageing.
My experience: This has definitely been one of my favourite products to come across my desk and become my new everyday essential. With isolation still taking place over the month and the need to still use SPF despite remaining indoors, I found this product to provide me with the most perfect protection and at home coverage. It’s like a tinted sunscreen, only better, with no white casting in sight! It sits so beautifully on the skin, leaving me with a healthy tinted glow, which was perfect in also providing slight coverage and making me look more awake and put together for my early morning zoom meetings! This is the perfect alternative to foundation and in future I will be wearing it on weekends when I want to give my skin a break, but still protect it. I love that I can get protection and a natural and dewy finish all in the one product!
TEOXANE RHA® Micellar Solution - Eleni
What it is: A prep/cleansing solution with a unique complex of active ingredients, incorporating the RHA patented technology in combination with soothing rose water for a perfect cleansing of all skins types.
My experience: With the inclusion of hyaluronic acid and rosewater I found this solution to bring the perfect balance back to my skin after a day of makeup wear. I love that it literally feels so very light. I would swipe my face with a cotton pad soaked in the solution and use it to remove any leftover makeup and other impurities on my face. It is very gentle and a great step in my skincare regime to ensure it is completely clean, soft and perfectly cleansed before moving onto the application of a serum. I found including this in my routine helped my other products to absorb better into my skin by providing a clean and moist base to encourage absorption. This gentle micellar solution has become a staple in my skincare routine, and I’m left wondering how I ever went without it.
Mellow Cosmetics Lipstick - Rhianna
What it is: A matte lipstick that is highly pigmented, richly formulated and long-wearing.
My experience: If you’re looking for a long wearing, soft matte lipstick to keep in your handbag at all times, then look no further than the Mellow Cosmetics Lipsticks! The incredibly pigmented formula glides onto the lip, and has a soft velvety matte finish. Unlike a lot of matte lippies on the market, this one does not feel drying and it instead leaves your lips looking and feeling soft and hydrated. Not only is the formula gentle and hydrating, but it’s also long wearing! This lipstick also comes in 10 beautiful shades. Whether you’re looking for the perfect nude, or a pop of colour, you are sure to be blown away by these lipsticks!
L’Oréal Paris Elvive Dream Lengths Restoring Shampoo and Detangling Conditioner - Tamara
What it is: A creamy, caring shampoo and conditioner range enriched with a cocktail of keratin, vitamins and castor oil to help reinforce the hair, detangle length and reduce breakage.
My experience: The Dream Lengths Restoring Shampoo has been created to protect your hair and reinforce its lengths to give you the opportunity to grow the length of your hair without needing to trim split ends too far. It has a lovely fragrance, lathered well and after a couple of weeks of use I found my hair to be in great condition, which was likely due to the keratin, vitamins and castor oil that are all key ingredients. The Detangling Conditioner had the same lovely scent, and same key ingredients. And the fact that I have knotty hair and noticed less tangles when brushing and more overall nourishment is definitely a reason for me to keep using these two products!