Thursday, November 1, 2012

Brown Barn Lotion 101

With the coming of winter I find myself pondering my skin, my hair, my overall self-care routine.  There is something about the turning of the seasons that turns my mind inward.  I suppose it might be the flaky skin, fly-away hair and itchy scalp that comes with turning on the heating system in the house!

There are many different lotions available from not only Brown Barn but other fine companies. It can be confusing to the consumer when so many options exist!  What follows is a primer on lotion - type, what it's good for and how to best use it.

From lightest type of lotion to heaviest:

1. Hand and Body Lotion - At Brown Barn this is our lightest lotion option.  We recently underwent a reformulation of our lotion line in an effort to provide a better, more long-lived lotion.  This type of lotion is light enough to use repeatedly throughout the day but still effective as your primary lotion. Brown Barn offers liquid lotions in a wide range of scents, ingredients and levels of "natural ingredients".  The base of our lotions are all natural however our customers love many of the synthetic fragrance oils available.  We offer this lotion in unscented, scented with essential oils (making the lotion all natural) and scented with fragrance oil (making this lotion nearly natural).

2. Body Oil - Honest Balance Body Oil is an all natural, organic body oil infused with organic essential oils.  It is produced by our sister company, Honest Balance Organics.  Body oils are generally more expensive than Body Lotion but they are, in the end, a much better deal!  They are straight oils with no additives or fillers.  Body oils are best used when stepping from the tub and applied to wet skin.  They can also be used by pouring a little oil directly into your warm bath water.  A little goes a very long way, resulting in much longer usage per bottle.  Honest Balance Organics ingredients are known for their high quality, organic certification and their commitment to using Fair Trade ingredients whenever possible.  You cannot find a higher quality oil on the market at a better price!

2. Body Cremes and Body Butters - Body Cremes and Body Butters are thicker than liquid lotion, providing for more oils per square inch of skin than lighter lotions.  Often these lotions are made with more expensive, more effective ingredients.  This results in deeper skin hydration.  Depending on skin needs, some clients may find these lotions to be too heavy for repeated use throughout the day.  For this reason we recommend Cremes and Lotions be used morning and night.

3. Salves - Brown Barn salves are all natural and quite thick.  They often use beeswax or other forms of wax to make them semi-solid.  Salves are great for problem spots such as elbows and knees or hands.  Their ingredients will dictate which salve will best fit your needs.  At Brown Barn we enjoy our Lavender Salve as a perfume as well as skin conditioner.

4. Massage Bars - At Brown Barn, massage bars are a best seller!  These are solid bars that transport oils to the skin when rubbed on the skin.  The warmth of the body causes the bar to melt slightly as it spreads the oils over the skin.  Massage bars are made with beeswax, just like salves, but massage bars are so solid you can pick up the entire bar.  The beeswax lays on top of the skin after the bar's oils sink in resulting in a barrier against the elements.  We love the massage bars for the beautiful finish it leaves on skin and "Rejuvinating" bar is made with herb infused oils and essential oils reputed to relieve pain and assist in healing.  Our massage bars are offered in many all natural scents and formulations along with a couple that are made using synthetic fragrance oil resulting in nearly natural formulation.

So what do I use from this list?

1.  I use Body Oil on my damp skin when I get out of the bathtub (yes, even on the nights I use a bath bomb!)
2.  I use Body Creme or Body butter each morning and each night.
3.  I use Liquid Hand/Body Lotion throughout the day.  We love it by the bathroom and kitchen sinks so we can apply with a little water.
4. I use salves for those pesky dry spots.
5. I use a massage bar when my skin is crying for more than lotion.  We keep a massage bar in each vehicle for my husband, who's hands are often cracked and battle-worn.  I love the massage bar if I'm wearing short sleeves so my skin looks finished and "ready for public viewing".

What's next on our formulating agenda?  A massage bar that can be used by skiers and other winter sports people who's faces suffer from wind-burn and over-exposure. We do not recommend using beeswax on the face as it could clog pores so we are looking for a binding substitute.

Whether you use lotion once a day, five times a day or once a month your skin will thank you for taking the time to apply helpful oils. If you find yourself confused about what lotion product is best for your skin type be sure to ask any of our helpful sales associates.  They have all used these lotions themselves and can answer your questions from first-hand experience!

Have a great week!

Chris Untiedt
The Brown Barn Company llc