Valentina's Home-Brewed Hydrating Body & Massage Oil

I tried a sample of Tata Harper's body oil and was subsequently ruined. It's amazing, but who can afford such a pricy bottle of body oil? And at the same time, nothing I found compared with it; either the ingredients weren't clean, the scent was lack luster or it didn't have that sublime feeling. That luxuriating feeling of freshly shaved legs and silk sheets. 

Not Body Oil, but here's the Body Wash, which is equally fantastic. And paired with a loofah, a great substitute for traditional shaving cream.

Not Body Oil, but here's the Body Wash, which is equally fantastic. And paired with a loofah, a great substitute for traditional shaving cream.

Then these art deco bohemian bottles from a new line, Valentina's Home-Brewed started popping up in my local coops. Turns out they're local-ish as in, they're from the Pacific Northwest (hi, Portland!) and tick ALL my boxes. And you can order them off Pharmaca, and with one of the myriad promo codes they float around online, can snag a bottle for <$11 a pop. So I snapped one up in every scent and am in the process of working my way through them all.

My absolute favorite is True Love (Cardamom, Chocolate & Roses).  if you're a sucker for gourmand cocktails or the smell of cocoa butter, or Lush's massage bars, you'll be very happy. Protection (Frankincense, Myrrh & Patchouli) is my second favorite, it's got that upscale serious earthiness I get from well built, woodsy fragrances from lines like Lurk or Le Labo. And it'll be my goto during cooler months.

Sunny Outlook (Mandarin, Lemon & Ginger) is perfect for these balmy summer mornings and evenings, and if you're experiencing decision fatigue, you can't go wrong with Sweet Dreams (Jasmine, Sandalwood & Vanilla). These two are light, as in the fragrance is gone a couple hours post application.

Red Flower Orange Quince Steam Mist


Green beauty blogs these days gush over the sensory and measurable benefits of using a hydrosol - a spray toner for the face to refresh. This is very similar, only it's for the face, body and hair, plus packs a stronger scent.

Red Flower Orange Quince Steam Mist

Part of Red Flower's Hammam line, the Orange Quince Steam Mist  is the fourth in seven products/steps in a ritual inspired by the traditional hammam sequence, a purification ritual still practiced in Turkey (where Red Flower's founder has roots). To borrow from Red Flower's website, this line traces "its roots back to the ancient roman thermae–the body treatment traditions of the hammam can still be experienced from the far-reaching costa of andalusia, spain to the hot springs of turkey, tunisia and morocco." Think saunas, invigorating scrubs, oil massages, dips into hot and cool pools before finally, lounging on limestone slabs wearing nothing more than a cotton robe and sipping sweetened apple tea.

Back to this spray, it's not strong enough to be a perfume, but has more fragrance than your average toner. It's sweet, spicy and walks the line between exotic and clean. The top notes are floral and fleeting, sweet neroli, rose and bright orange blossom give way to clean citrus notes (quince and grapefruit) that are warmed up with cedar atlas wood.

Designed to be an uplifting aromatherapeutic experience, the spray also boasts natural extracts to balance out the skin. What I love it as, as a quick last step before getting dressed or running out the door, particularly when misted over the hair.

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