Jul 8, 2012

Review: Bellaboo Skin Care Line

It has nearly been two months since I first purchased a product from the Bellaboo skin care line. Since then, I have bought nearly everything (minus two masks) and I have been trying the products and carefully paying attention to the state of my skin. For reference, I am a 20-year-old with sensitive, combination-oily, acne-prone skin and I have tried natural skin care products on several occasions with little to no luck.

Before I begin the review, I'd like to talk about Bellaboo the brand. It was created out of the owner's frustration with the fact that there wasn't effective natural skin care for younger girls. So that being said, the target audience for these products is pre-teens, teenagers, and 20-somethings. The brand is also based in Australia and until recently, it was but a dream for an American to purchase the line without searching online. I am not sure how long the products have been available on drugstore.com, but in the past few months these products have been popping up at Ulta!

I'm sad to say that something in this line just doesn't work with my skin, because at the one month mark I had so many clogged pores that my skin looked like a bumpy mess. I wish I had photos for reference, but I've been slowly switching to different products (despite my ban on purchasing products... my skin needed an intervention).

Now, the specific products I have from this line are: All That Clean Skin Facial Wash ($12.99), Buff Skin Facial Exfoliator ($12.99), Gorgeous Skin Moisturise Dew ($12.99), E Z Blitz Serum ($12.99), and the Sweet Sin Chocolate Mask ($9.99). All of the products have similar packaging. I think pre-teens would really find the packaging cute but I didn't care for it (but I am 20, so this line isn't technically targeted right at my age range). Every product comes in a tube, including the cleanser, which has a liquidy-gel consistency. If it was a bit thicker, it would be fine in that tube, but since it isn't very thick, it's very easy to dispense too much product into your hand.

I like that the products are 99.5% natural. None of the items have chemical-based fragrances (they do have an herbal scent to them from the ingredients and essential oils). I also appreciate the fact that there are no artificial dyes in the products because quite frankly, if somebody bought a skin care product because they thought it was "pretty" then I would be concerned.

As I mentioned above, the All That Clean Skin Facial Wash is a clear cleanser with a gel consistency. It is a bit more watery than most gel cleansers, but it is significantly thicker than most of the more "natural" cleansers I have used (Burt's Bees acne line, Desert Essence Thoroughly Clean Face Wash, etc). For the most part, when I used this cleanser it did make my skin feel clean, but after a while I felt as if it wasn't cleaning as well as it could be, even on days I didn't wear any makeup. If the cleanser got anywhere near my nose then it somehow always ended up in my nostrils and it burned a little. Even though the cleanser is sulfate free, it still foamed up pretty nicely, but the lather didn't last very long when I used my Clarisonic with the cleanser, which is the opposite of what happens to me with other cleansers. Even though the tube of this cleanser is probably a bit pricey for somebody just starting out with skin care products, I only used a pea sized amount when I washed my face (when my skin started to "resist" the cleanser I tried using more and it didn't change the results).

The only product I really disliked from the beginning was the Buff Skin Facial Exfoliator. Even though I have sensitive skin, I appreciate a scrub that feels like it is giving me a deep clean. I always look for something that is less abrasive than St. Ives, but more abrasive than a cleanser that might happen to have beads in it for kicks. To me, the exfoliator felt like a lotion with some texture that doesn't actually do much. I've actually been using it on my legs when I shower so I can use it up. It does smell nice, but I think people who prefer very gentle scrubs might get more enjoyment out of this product than I did. This scrub is intended to be used twice a week.

I actually really liked the Gorgeous Skin Moisturise Dew. The consistency felt like a mix between a lotion and a gel and my skin never felt greasy when I used it, but I could tell that my skin was very hydrated. I still don't know if this is what clogged my pores or not, so I haven't been using it on my face for the past several days, but once I make sure whether or not this works for my skin, I would probably repurchase this.

The E Z Blitz Serum can be used alone or mixed in with moisturizer. The purpose of this product is to calm breakouts. I've noticed that it helps with my smaller pimples, but I tend to have problems with deep pimples that take ages to go away. For the person with the occasional pimple, this will be fantastic because it comes in such a big tube (2 fluid ounces, most spot treatments are 0.5 fluid ounces). Unfortunately, this does not wear well under foundation and if I wear it all over my face I find that my skin gets oilier than it normally would. I can tolerate that at night, but during the daytime I would rather not endure an oil spill on my face.

The Sweet Sin Chocolate Mask is fun, for lack of a better way of describing it. It is a clay mask that actually smells like chocolate. While the mask dries, it makes my face tingle without it being uncomfortable. I don't really see a difference in my skin after I use it, though, so I probably won't buy this mask again after I finish it... especially since there are so many homemade mask recipes I can (and want to) try before I actually buy a mask again.

Overall, I would say that although most of these products did not achieve "holy grail" status in my skin care routine, I applaud the creator because these are all well-formulated products... some of them just did not work with my rebellious skin. In fact, the cleanser I've had to turn to is not natural (but it seems to be helping). I think the biggest disappointment is that this line seems to work perfectly for everybody else from the reviews I have read, but for me it was hit and miss.