You may have heard of Arbonne, the Swiss developed skincare brand. I hadn’t until quite recently when I was approached by a local consultant about trying out some of their range.
At first I thought, oh it’ll be like Avon, but, it’s not. Arbonne also have an ever-extending range of Vegan nutritional products and supplements.
When I first met up with Claire, she explained a bit about the background of Arbonne, first developed in Switzerland in 1975, and their ‘pure, safe, beneficial’ products. It was obvious to me that the company are trying to be green in all ways from the botanical nature of their ranges to the way the brand works.
To quote Managing Director Stian Morck: “It’s our responsibility to leave the earth a better place than we found it for generations to come.”
Of course, we all know that green, organic, environmentally-friendly products don’t come cheap and, if you’re only interested in budget brands then Arbonne probably isn’t going to appeal to you.
But, think for a minute, why are some brands so inexpensive? We know that beauty businesses have overheads…from ingredients to staff to property to distribution to advertising to, ahem, taxes…businesses have many outgoings. Someone must be losing out somewhere mustn’t they? There are several answers to this. Some pay very low wages. Some pay very little for getting the product to the consumer. Some use very little of the active ingredient that is supposed to be beneficial.
Most of us support fair trade if we can where our groceries are concerned. Groceries are a necessity. Cosmetics are a luxury so surely the principle is even more important?
Anyway, I’m not here to nag you about your spending habits but some things are cheap for a reason. Some are genuinely what are called loss-leaders in supermarkets etc…a case in point is my local chemist selling tubs of Simple’s micellar facial cleansing wipes at a quid each instead of £3.99…piled high at the door. These are my favourites but I know that the cheap price is to lure me in, in the hope I’ll then fill my basket with make-up and perfume while I’m there. I don’t, but I bet a few people do.
Back to Arbonne and I got lots of goodies to try. But, where to start?
I was kindly given items from the skincare, cosmetics, and, nutrition ranges; over the last few weeks it’s been good fun working out what I like, and more importantly, what works for me.
I’ll start with nutrition as that was where I had the least success. I tried the Protein Shake Meal Replacement in, of course, the chocolate flavour. It’s in no way Arbonne’s fault but I am truly rubbish at getting these things to mix properly. Since I’ve been losing weight I’ve tried a few different ones over the last few months, even investing in a posh shaker with a metal ball thingy, but I just can never get them to mix properly. Must be something severely wrong with my wrist action! I can tell you that the taste is super though.
As Claire knew about my food intolerances she included a couple of the Digestion Plus sachets which contain probiotics, prebiotics, and, enzymes to support your digestive health. These are a brilliant idea but best to mix them in with something tasty as the flavour is less than palatable.
On a more positive note, the Fruit Nutrition Bars were great (also available in chocolate flavour), as were the Pomegranate Energy Fizz Sticks (also available in citrus flavour).
Then it was time to play with makeup. I was looking forward to this as I rarely bother seeking out new products, if I find a colour I like I stick with that till either the cows come home or it gets discontinued!
However, one thing I’ve yet to achieve success with is foundation. I’m so pale which isn’t that unusual but I’ve just never found anything that works for me. Garnier’s BB cream in light and Rimmel’s Stay Matte mousse in ivory were close contenders but the search continued. They all seem too orangey or too much like makeup. That may sound daft, but, most days I only wear a little eye makeup and a pale lip colour, and, I don’t go OTT when I dress up. A heavy look just doesn’t suit me and I don’t like the way it feels on my skin either. I think I read another blogger call it having your skin look like skin and that’s what I mean.
Along came Arbonne’s Perfecting Liquid Foundation in Alabaster and it is pretty perfect. Especially now that, at the grand old age of 46 I’ve discovered primer! It’s bad that I’d never used one until now isn’t it?! I don’t think I’ve ever felt anything as smooth on my skin than this Makeup Primer! I can’t praise it enough and would encourage all of you to try it, even you gentlemen (especially the selfie lovers that want to look smooth on camera), if you haven’t already.
I was also given a mascara to try. I’m currently loving the Rimmel Wonder’Full but the It’s A Long Story from Arbonne is pretty great. I’m not going to claim I had instantly spectacular lashes but I can say that I especially loved the slender wand. This meant my sparse lower lashes got defining attention instead of going without or looking lumpy and clumpy.
There was a lovely eye makeup remover too, Easy On The Eyes, which did a perfectly good job, but, I still love my AA Skincare Seaweed & Aloe eye gel, which doubles as a remover, for it’s cooling properties.
As I’ve said, Arbonne isn’t a budget range of cosmetics, but, judging by the foundation alone, I’ve probably spent 3 times the cost on my search for a suitable off-the-shelf one for my skin tone, so, to me, this is value for money. Another thing to remember here is that a little really does go a long way so you don’t need to renew your investment as often.
Next up, skin care, more important than the cosmetics. If your skin is in really bad condition, no amount of slap is going to make it better in my opinion. I haven’t done too badly following my mum’s golden rule of Oil Of Ulay, or just Olay as it is now, but, now I’m of a certain age I was pleased of the opportunity to explore new ways to keep my skin healthy.
First from the Arbonne Intelligence range was their Lip Treatment. Another brilliant find and another one for my shopping list!
‘Lips feel replenished, hydrated and moisturised. Also enhances the appearance of lip volume and multitasks as a primer for lipstick or gloss.’ Can’t speak for the appearance of volume but the rest of this claim is certainly true. Plus you only need a teeny tiny squeeze of it. Wonderful.
Also from this range I had the Genius Nightly Resurfacing Pads. These come as a set with a solution to soak them in but mine had already been done. It did feel good but would realistically one faff too many in a nightly routine for me.
Most of the products I received were from the RE9 Advanced anti-aging range. It’s worth noting too that there is a male grooming alternative to these.
Some credit should probably go to my continuing weight loss, but, after just a week of using this range, I got told I was really looking better. I didn’t tell anyone I was using this but to receive compliments was lovely and a real confidence boost too.
Some of you know I love AA Skincare for a lot of my routine now but I am having to add a couple of items from Arbonne RE9 Advanced too.
There’s a subtle citrussy scent with these that instantly makes you think of healthy Vitamin C, and, if comments from colleagues are anything to go by this week, look healthy too.
Everything absorbed into my skin wonderfully and after an initial rosy glow, within minutes my face just felt calm and lovely. It’s definitely softer and I’m so pleased.
The day cream also has an SPF of 20 included which is great news for the pale-faced among us!
Once again with these, a little does go a very long way. I knew I was heading towards quite an expensive shopping basket when I fell in love with a few of the products, but, when something feels this good to use and you notice results, it’s silly not to go ahead if you can. I look at it that these will last so much longer than inexpensive products and are therefore a bit of an investment in my skincare.
I’m sure you’re all thinking but did she put her money where her mouth is? Did she actually pay her own money over and buy these things she’s telling us are great? Well, yes I did!
If any of these take your fancy do feel free to tell Claire I sent you but I have been put under no pressure whatsoever to become a consultant. I’ve purely been trying these products out to share them with you.
Now then, if you’ve made it this far I have a lovely prize too 🙂
Arbonne, either mistakenly or generously, sent me an extra in my order box. Therefore I have a Liquid Sunshine Lip Balm to giveaway to one of you.
Keeping with the green theme, just leave me a comment telling me what your favourite green thing is and the WordPress Pick Giveaway Winner thingy will do its magic and choose one of you to receive this:
UK entries only I’m afraid and the giveaway will close at midnight 23rd May 2016. Winners will be notified by e-mail, and Twitter or Facebook if we’re friends there too. Good luck!
*I was given samples from Arbonne to try for the purposes of this review. All opinions and purchase decisions are my own.