I have often mentioned that I am one of those people who washes her hands frequently (just a little germophobic), but I am pretty diligent about using gentle soaps and following with a good hand crema. However lately, with all the cleaning at our new house and with the temperatures dropping, my hands became very dry and irritated and my skin felt tight. I remembered that I had this repairing balm still sealed in some box somewhere in the chaos of my office, so I went through all the boxes to find it, and I am so glad I did because it worked so well.
The African Botanics Marula Intense Skin Repair Balm* is a buttery balm that appears thick and solid in the jar but instantly softens upon contact with warm fingers. It’s very rich and creamy, spreads smoothly over the skin, and once it is absorbed it immediately conditions the skin. I have not tried it on my face because my skin is combination and this may be too rich for me, but I have used it on my hands and body. I do, however, imagine that this would be incredibly alleviating for people with very dry skin. It is recommended to alleviate dry and very dry skin; to protect the skin from the elements and to heal it when it has been exposed to wind, sun, and cold. This balm also promotes the healing of scars and will soothe sensitive skin. I have also read from some reviewers that it works great to soothe eczema. African Botanics also suggests that it can be used weekly as a hydrating face mask.
Ingredient-wise, I love the formula and I love that it is entirely made in South Africa with local, wild-harvested and organic ingredients. It contains some of my favorite botanicals: Marula oil, which is considered one of the most beneficial oils for dry and aging skin with its high levels of fatty acids and antioxidants; Shea Butter, which provides Vitamin E and A and it’s one of the best ingredients alleviate dryness and keep the skin soft and supple; Calendula, (one of my top 3 favorite ingredients for the skin) which has anti-inflammatory ingredients and promotes the healing of wounds; Chamomile and Helicrysum, which reduces inflammation.
This is the full ingredient list:
Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Acacia Decurrens/Jojoba/Sunflower Seed Wax/Polyglyceryl-3 Esters, Capric/Caprylic Triglyceride, Glyceryl Stearate, Isoamyl Laurate, Sclerocarya Birrea (Marula) Seed Oil**, Adansonia Digitata (Baobab) Seed Oil, Citrullus Lanatus (Watermelon) Seed Oil, Bulbine Frutescens (Burn Jelly Plant) Extract, Aloe Ferox (Aloe Leaf) Extract, Asparlathus Linearis (Green Rooibos) Extract, Rhododendron Ferrugineum Leaf Cell Culture Extract, Isomalt, Lecithin, Sodium Benzoate, Lactic Acid, Crocus Crysanthus (Snow Crocus) Bulb Extract, Acacia Senegal Gum, Eriocephalus punctulatus (Chamomile Cape) Essential Oil, Melissa Officinalis (Melissa) Essenial Oil, Citrus Aurantium (Neroli) Essential Oil, Cananga Odorata (Ylang-Ylang) Essential Oil, Helichrysum Splendidum (Helichrysum) Essential Oil, Calendula Officianalis (Calendula) Oil, Tocopherol Acetate, Sodium Phytate, Benzyl Cinnamate*, Benzyl Salicylate*, Cinnamyl Alcohol*, Citral*, Citronellol*, Coumarin*, Eugenol*, Farnesol*, Geraniol*, Isoeugenol*, Limonene*, Linalool*.
*Constituents of natural essential oils. **Organic. Formulated without mineral oil, silicone, synthetic fragrances, parabens, PEGs, PPGs, DEA, TEA, urea or phthalates.
The scent of it is very sweet and a tad strong for me, yet not strong enough to put me off, as it decreases in intensity overtime anyway. However, I can imagine that people who are highly sensitive to scents may find it a little too intense. My husband likes it, and he does not like the scent of 90% of my products, just sayin’.
I am very glad to have had the chance to try this balm. It is probably my favorite balm for hands and body together with the Kahina Fez Hand & Body Balm and I will most likely buy more in the future. During warmer months I can usually get away without using hand creams; but a hydrating, conditioning balm during Winter is really a must-have.