23 September 2011

Arbonne Extravaganza

Several recent stories about high levels of toxins and other harmful chemicals, like arsenic in apple juice and PBAs in water bottles, have encouraged me to really consider the products I'm putting in and on my body. It's not like I never thought about it before, but as I begin to show signs of aging...I want to take every measure possible to remain as young and healthy looking as possible. (Mmm, probably should have thought about that when I was spending a good-portion of my twenties in tanning beds and boycotting sunscreen.)

I've trusted my skincare regiment to Kiehl's  for a long time. With natural ingredients and recyclable packaging, I thought Kiehl's was an environmentally conscious company that was committed to the wellness of consumers. So, I was a little reluctant when I was presented with an invitation to try Arbonne products, and furthermore, I had no intention of getting sucked in by its reputed network-marketing distribution system.

I may not be a total convert yet, but I do really like some of the Arbonne products I tried! And I love the fact that Arbonne products are botanically- based and use all natural ingredients. Some ranked higher up on the scale of satisfaction than others though. Review to follow.

What's the difference between Arbonne and Kiehl's-- besides a few extra dollars? After the Arbonne party, I promptly came home and checked the ingredients lists on my Kiehl's products. They are naturally derived, NOT natural. And they contain parabens, a common ingredient found in moisturizers, shampoos and toothpaste, which has been found to disrupt the endocrine system...

Other things to look out for-- Cosmetics and beauty products with petroleum-based ingredients and mineral oil (would you consciously put something derived from the same thing as gasoline on your face???)  and tetragenics, which can cause birth defects. Yep, there's all kinds of information out there like this to scare you.

If you're still hanging with me,  here's the review, at long last:

The RE9 line is Arbonne's best selling. Although I would have liked the whole six step skincare system, including the neck toner and instant lift gel, my budget only allowed for the serum and night cream.


A+. The night cream is ultra-hydrating and doesn't feel greasy at all. As the season's have begun to change, and the cool, crisp, dry fall air moves in, I've even used the heavier night cream during the day. As far as the serum, not really sure if I've seen the effects yet. I still have fine lines...But it's only been three weeks or so. Those may need a more serious strategy for elimination.

I also ordered pre-made chocolate shakes with 20 grams of protein and 20 minerals and vitamins. They're pricey at $34 for 12 shakes, especially compared to the EAS protein shakes that are $7 for 4. The Sailor, who's a big fan of the EAS shakes, hates the Arbonne kind. And, to be perfectly honest, I did too- at first. The second shake I tried tasted a little better than the first, and the third a little better than the second. So, now I'm down to only 2 left and already thinking about how I can justify buying them again.

The flavor is great, and they're filling. The design of the straw, however, is pretty poor. It comes in two pieces, which easily come apart. Part way through the drink, it usually gets lost in the container.  I'm left sipping straight out of the container, trying to avoid spillage. No bueno.

I think my favorite item I ordered is the aromatherapy body spray. The scent "Unwind" is described as "rejuvenating"-- which just doesn't make sense. Shouldn't it be relaxing if the name is "Unwind"? Anyway, the combined scents of ylang-ylang and chamomile are light fragrances and soothing- I spray it on our bed linens and usually use a bit on my wrists before bed time.

Another heavenly scent- The Ginger Citrus Body Butter. Although it's not a regularly featured item, the Ginger Citrus Cream has been offered in the past as part of a three-pack sample size gift set or purchase with purchase deal. The new Holiday 2011 catalog includes a 12 oz. tub, as well as body wash and sugar scrub, so I'm going to have to stock up for the rest of the year!

Yup, there's more. And, before I forget, I did get the Sailor a little something. I thought we would share the shakes, and then I also got him chapstick. Albeit fancy chapstick. He likes it. Or so he says. 

And then I got some lip gloss in Brown Sugar and bronzer for moi. I wouldn't recommend either though. The gloss was nothing special, and the color was more coral than neutral. The bronzer, which was supposed to look "flawless," was waaay too dark on my fair Irish skin. After putting it on, I looked like I'd been playing in my mother's make-up drawer. I'm sticking to the old-standby MAC cosmetics from now on.

Products ship directly to your home. Fast. Within a day or two. Big shipping costs= Big "Dislike." 

Of course, even though I said I wasn't going to get sucked into the network marketing thing, who believed that? Of course I got involved. But just on a very, very minor level. A $29 sign-up fee ensures me "Preferred Client" status and 20% off on all future orders. There will indeed be future orders! 

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