It’s probably safe to say that many of us move through the daily shampoo/conditioner/soap/deodorant/facial cream/body lotion (aside from those of you who skip the last two steps) routine without giving much thought to the products sitting on the bathroom shelves.
Sure, you may be more partial to Pantene than L’Oreal, or think that Dove trumps Ivory, and that Garnier is a welcome newcomer in your facial cream inventory. Among men, there are those who consider Old Spice deodorant a way to recapture their masculinity (see the YouTube commercial), and feel that slapping on aftershave is enough of a nod to post-shower products. And, hey, good on ya. It all counts as “product.”
But there comes a point when it’s time to reconsider the comfort zone of those familiar toiletries and cosmetics, and try something, well, new. Particularly now, given that local companies are breaking the market open with some well-regarded products that are often more natural in ingredients, and provide the much-desired foaming-soapy-cleansing-fresh-smelling results always sought in any body-care process.
This week, a look at five local products worth considering in your next drugstore (or salon) run.
1) One of the major local success stories in the cosmetics world is TetraPharm and its SeboCalm product line, which offers solutions for people with sensitive skin. Two pharmacists, Herman Weiss and Amnon Bechar, realized they were constantly dealing with customers complaining of sensitive skin, so they began with shampoos and quickly moved on to anti-aging creams, aftershave balms and the famed Calm Triple, which is a combination moisturizer, sunblock and light makeup in one tube.
But their big success right now is the SeboCalm BB cream, their version of a “blemish balm,” the latest concept to hit the cosmetics market (and which started in Korea), which combines a moisturizer and light cover-up in one product. Almost every company is now doing BB, said Maya Fisher, who handles marketing for SeboCalm, but they wanted something that would provide better all-day coverage than the others.
“We wanted to give an answer to older skin,” explained Fisher, “which needs more protection from the sun, and is drier than the skin of someone who is 25 or 30. Older skin has more blemishes, and needs the cover-up to last all day.”
SeboCalm’s BB also offers protection from the sun and, interestingly, Fisher said, it’s used by many women who don’t ordinarily use makeup, probably because it can be applied with your fingertips without even glancing in the mirror.
SeboCalm BB, available at pharmacies and online at GlossyBox, Amazon, and IsraelCosmedics.
2) Another award-winning local cream comes from the Christina Company, which was founded by cosmetician Mary (Christina) Zahavi; the company’s Nourishing Cream was awarded Best of Beauty 2013 in the Russian edition of Allure magazine. The cream is part of the company’s new product line, Muse, a rejuvenation and protection treatment that’s meant to strengthen the skin’s ability to renew itself, using capuacu butter and flax extract. According to Karen Pakes, the company’s marketing communications director, Muse uses one of the latest innovations in the world of cosmetics, Telosense Active — a unique “Nobel Prize technology” that has been proven to enhance cell longevity, to increase elasticity, and to promote a healthy radiant appearance.
The products aren’t cheap, pointed out cosmetics blogger Haboleshet, but the results are well worth the price, and she recommends using it stringently. Available through cosmeticians or through the Christina site.
3) The big news in the hair-care world for the last few years has been argan oil, a plant oil extracted from the kernels of the nuts that grow on the argan tree; they are full of fatty acids that moisturize, hydrate and soften hair, for starters, as well as other parts of the body. It’s often called “Moroccan oil” — the argan tree is indigenous to Morocco — and there are many products out there touting argan oil as one of their main ingredients.
One of the best options is Moroccanoil, created by two Israelis and distinguished by its baby-blue label. It all started with founder Carmen Tal, an Israeli living in New York, who was visiting her family in Israel and headed to a salon after a hair-coloring experience that left her hair badly damaged. The argan oil treatment she received returned her hair to normal — and she was sold. Moroccanoil includes argan oil in its secret recipe, said publicists for the company, and it’s all made and packaged in Israel.
The product line’s oil treatment recently won the Stylist Choice Award for the fifth time. Blogger Cosmetic Crave calls it a “cult product” for having revolutionized hair care, although it is pricey, at $12.75 per ounce. Available only at hair salons, and at salons found through the Moroccanoil website.
4) Organic product line Lavido is probably more familiar to those living in and around Kibbutz Nahalal, the Jezreel Valley community where it was first created by Ido Magal, who made the Baby Calendula Cream for his baby niece’s incurable diaper rash. Now, with seven different product lines — including those based on pomegranates, olive oil, and evening primrose — and four stores — in Herzliya, Zichron Yaakov and two other locations — this mostly organic company is now stocking the shelves of local health food stores. It also gets high marks from cosmetics bloggers, who like the texture and scent of the all-natural products, particularly for those dealing with problem skin.
One is welcome to join their club, where there are better deals for frequent buyers.
5) I’ve been noticing a new line of shampoos and body washes on the local supermarket shelves, Eco Love. Although they are more pricey than the average shampoos, conditioners and body washes, they contain natural and organic ingredients. In addition, they are SLS- and paraben- free, referring to sodium lauryl sulfate and sodium laureth sulfate, detergents that are found in most personal-care products. Eco Love is made by the “Yes to Carrots” people, and follows a similar theme: The products are based on orange, red, or green fruits and vegetables from the garden, and are free of synthetic colors or fragrances. The company didn’t respond to requests for more information, but their products are the most easily found, as they are available in local drugstores and many supermarkets.