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The Mass Media

Beauty Column: Reviving Your Extra-Dry Skin for Spring

So—it’s officially spring. Actually officially spring, as of this past Sunday. The days here in Boston are finally feeling just the slightest bit warmer, and it’s nearing that time in the year when we can peel off the layers of worn-down boots and weathered coats and bring out the glorious dresses and crisp new shorts.
But part of this journey to warmer days inevitably also means facing the monstrosity that your skin may be at this point. You know exactly what I’m talking about: feet that feel like they will never be baby soft again, itchy legs that you probably haven’t shaved in a month, and so on. It was easy to slack a little bit in the skin-care regimen department when waking up each day meant facing biting wind chill.
As someone with extremely dry skin, the negative and single digit temperatures took a serious toll on me, especially on my legs. I found that most of the products I felt I could always rely on were failing me, and I decided to change up my routine. After a little investigating and experimenting as far as exfoliators and moisturizers went, these products ended up being the ones to rejuvenate my extra-dry skin.
Charity Pot by LUSH Cosmetics
 $25.95 for 8.4 oz
Although I’ve always been reluctant to get sucked into the LUSH product frenzie, I finally caved this winter, and it was certainly an excellent decision. With moisturizing plant-based ingredients such as jojoba oil, fair trade cocoa butter, and fair trade shea butter, the Charity Pot body lotion was one of the first on my list to try out. If you do not want to take the plunge with the 8.4 oz, LUSH also offers a 1.7 oz size for $6.95. A little of this product goes a long way, so although it may seem a bit pricy, I think it is worth the investment for reviving your skin.
This is definitely a heavy-duty moisturizer and not one that I would recommend for year-round use. However, each of the larger tubs has a shelf life of about one year, so you could certainly store it and bring it back out when the chilly weather returns.
If you are prone to oily skin or breakouts, I also would avoid this product. Its top ingredients include Fair Trade Olive Oil, Organic Jojoba Oil, and Moringa Oil, meaning it is almost guaranteed to break you out, especially if you put it on your face. Even for those of you who are not particularly worried about oil, LUSH employees don’t recommend putting this on your face.
However, as someone with extremely dry skin all over my body, this has served as an all-over lotion for me, including my face. I have had no problems with breakouts since using the product.
As an added bonus, LUSH claims to donate 100% of revenue from this product (besides taxes) to various grassroots organizations working toward human rights, animal rights, and environmental protection. The company regularly posts which organizations have received aid on their website: www.lushusa.com
Buffy by LUSH Cosmetics
$23.95 for 7.0 oz in bar form (does not include tin to hold product)
What has perhaps done the most to help with the skin on my legs was this exfoliating bar, another LUSH product. The bar is sold in a square shape in two sizes, the smaller one being a 3.3 oz square for $12.95.
This bar not only works to exfoliate your skin with gentle ingredients such as ground rice, ground almonds, and ground aduki beans—it also acts as a moisturizer. The first two ingredients in this product are Fair Trade Cocoa Butter and Shea Butter, which certainly explains its texture and tendency to melt right onto your skin.
It’s best to use this product once to twice a week, and use it at the end of your shower to avoid washing off the moisturizing butters off your skin. Pair this with the Charity Pot after your shower and you skin will be super soft for the rest of the day.
As much as I love this product, it’s worth noting that the bar leaves a bit of a slimy residue that takes a while to sink in, and will certainly get all over your tub. It would be best to use this bar when you have a chance to clean up your tub right after your shower.
Frank Body: Original Coffee Scrub
$14.95 for 7 oz.
Another exfoliator that I’ve been alternating the Buffy bar with is Frank Body’s original version of the Coffee Scrub. As the title gives away, the main ingredient in this scrub is—you guessed—roasted and ground Robsusta Coffee Bean powder. The scrub smells deliciously of coffee and orange due to the additional ingredient: orange oil.
The ingredients list claims that the caffeine in the beans encourages blood flow, working to fight skin problems such as cellulite and stretch marks. Other key ingredients include almond oil, salt, and brown sugar. Virtually all of the ingredients are plant-based, with the questionable fragrance noted as “natural” without further clarification.
The consistency of the scrub is exactly that of coffee grounds, and while it smells wonderful and leaves behind super soft skin, the product makes a huge mess. Not only do the grains themselves get everywhere, the addition of water produces a coffee-colored liquid, as expected. Although it’s exceptionally messy and honestly a hassle to clean up after, the results are worth it. Between LUSH’s Buffy and Frank Body’s Coffee Scrub, my favoring of Buffy merely stems from not wanting to deal with the mess of the Coffee Scrub.