I am a fan of the South African brand Skin Creamery. Their products are simple (insofar as a product can be simple) but they work well for me if I want something uncomplicated. They’re gentle on my skin, and do an amazing job at being a simple and effective natural skincare.
When I first came across their (then) new Skin Creamery The Balm, I was intrigued.
I am a big big fan of May Lindstrom’s Blue Cocoon, and this jar of blue balm made me wonder if it was similar in some way (at a fraction of the price!) 🙂
Skin Creamery The Balm
Skin Creamery says that this botanical balm is a multi-purpose beauty balm that primarily offers relief for dry, sensitive skin.
As a thick balm, it is formulated to be moisturising on dry skin, and is infused with anti-inflammatory oils to calm and soothe skin.
The key ingredients on the lid are
- Baobab oil – from the native Baobab tree of Africa, that features in all of Skin Creamery products. This is a moisturising oil that my skin loves, and why I enjoy using Skin Creamery products.
- Helichrysum – containing rejuvenating and restorative properties, Helichrysum oil has many uses, including reducing the appearance of blemishes and wrinkles, and providing a soothing sensation for the skin. Helichrysum essential oil has anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, and antibacterial properties that may be useful in healing skin.
- Prickly Pear – Prickly pear seeds contain fatty acids, phenols, nutrients such as vitamin E, vitamin K, phytosterols, and antioxidants. This oil is extremely hydrating and skin softening. Products containing Prickly Pear are also useful for skin that is dry and sensitive.
Unlike Blue Cocoon which uses the Blue Tansy flower oil for its blue hue, Skin Creamery The Balm uses Blue Spirulina. Spirulina is a blue-green algae that is also a highly nutritious superfood. It contains antioxidants that fight against free radicals, and also contains 8 essential amino acids, Omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamin B and Iron. Spirulina also contains a rare fatty acid known as gamma linolenic acid (known to promote the structural integrity of skin and decrease skin inflammation).
The Balm is meant to soothe skin that is sensitive and irritated, and provide a cocoon of calm and repair.
Thick, heavy balm texture that melts on skin
Unsurprisingly, with a name like The Balm, and looking at the ingredients and the texture, this is a thick, heavy balm that comes in a lovely glass jar.
It is relatively stable as a balm texture even in our warm tropical weather. When you scoop out some of the product into your palm, you will find that it remains fairly solid even then. However, when you rub it between your palms, the heat from your hands will melt it.
It doesn’t quite melt down into an oil texture, remaining fairly balmy throughout. I have described it to some as feeling a little waxy, but not in a candle wax sort of way. It still feels breathable, unlike wax that suffocates the skin.
It is not greasy and it will absorb into the skin eventually. It offers a nice base for a bit of massage, if you feel like it.
Otherwise, if your skin is feeling sensitive, then the best way is to warm it up between your palms, then gently press onto your face without rubbing.
Lest you think you might start to resemble one of the characters from Avatar, be assured that the blue colour does not stain the skin nor even show up 😛 Besides, you only need very little product as it is fairly thick.
You can see just how much product I have left in my jar, and I have had this jar quite a while. I only use it fairly sparingly and occasionally, when I feel like my skin needs a little pampering, or when I’m feeling a little lazy 😛
Moisturising to skin and soothing
On my face, I like to use The Balm on some days when I use retinol, or the night after I use retinol or an acid exfoliant. It just soothes and calms my skin, while helping it stay moisturised after a drying routine.
I sometimes mist my skin lightly before applying The Balm to my skin, as I find it helps it absorb a little better.
However, I don’t use it nightly, as I prefer using a cream for the other times. This is a treat for my skin once or twice a week, or when I’m feeling a little lazy and want something quick and easy that moisturises my skin, and doesn’t take a lot of work 😛
Multi-use balm works on dry skin
The other thing I like using the Skin Creamery The Balm for, is on patches of dry skin on my body. The product is so emollient and moisturising with its botanical oils, that I find it helps to soothe any dry patches.
I have a dry bit of skin on my knee that always flares up every now and then. Some nights, when I remember, I apply just a tiny dab of The Balm on it, and wake up to skin that isn’t so hard and dry. Ditto the skin on my cuticles.
I work a lot with my hands these days, and I’m always washing them (and not always moisturising them throughout the day). A little dab of The Balm on the dry bits of skin on my hands helps to keep them soft and moisturised, and to not have them looking so dry and awful.
IN A NUTSHELL
Skin Creamery The Balm is a heavy thick balm that can be used to soothe and moisturise dry and sensitive skin. You only need a little product, warmed up between your palms, and massaged or pressed into your skin. It can also be used on other dry parts of your body, to soothe, calm and moisturise dry skin. It takes a little while but will absorb into the skin and moisturise dry skin to make it feel more comfortable. I don’t use it as a daily moisturiser, but I like using it once or twice a week just to reset my skin.
Not too pricey as you only need a little product
Multi-use on dry patches of skin
Moisturises and soothes dry and sensitive skin
Floral scent is a little too strong for me
Takes a little longer to absorb into skin
WHO WILL LIKE THIS: Anyone with very dry and sensitive skin that needs soothing
PRICE: RM189 for 40ml
WHERE TO BUY: Savanna Goodness website (Malaysia)
For those interested, this is the ingredients list of the Skin Creamery The Balm:
Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil Mangifera Indica (Mango) Seed Butter Myrica Cerifera (Bayberry) Fruit Wax Adansonia Digitata (Baobab) Seed Oil* Sclerocarya Birrea (Marula) Oil* Opuntia Ficus-Indica (Prickly Pear) Seed Oil** Spirulina Platensis Extract Tocopherol Botswellia Carterii (Frankincense) Oil Helichrysum Odoratissimum (Imphepho) Oil* Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil Pelargonium Graveolens (Rose Geranium) Oil* Trehalose Citronellol*** Geraniol*** Limonene*** Linalool***
* certified organic ingredients
** wild grown ingredients
*** component of natural essential oils
Skin Creamery The Balm vs May Lindstrom Blue Cocoon
I have had many people ask me about this comparison ever since I first showed my purchase on Instagram. My personal view is that aside from the blue tint to the balm (which come from different sources), the similarities end there.
I personally find Blue Cocoon to be more of an oil in a semi-solid form, as it melts into an oil immediately on contact with the skin. The Balm on the other hand, is more of a balm that doesn’t melt completely.
In that sense, I do find Blue Cocoon absorbs more readily into the skin, while The Balm sits on skin a little longer, and needs a little more work before it absorbs fully into the skin.
RELATED READING: My complete Blue Cocoon review – I do still buy it when I run out READ HERE
While both balms claim to soothe sensitive skin, I personally find that Blue Cocoon does a slightly better job at it. When my skin feels a little stressed out, A session with Blue Cocoon usually brings it back to a manageable level more quickly. I also find the scent to be a little more comforting and soothing.
I don’t find this happening as quickly with Skin Creamery The Balm. It soothes and moisturises the skin, but it doesn’t quite offer the same sort of comfort and cocoon that Blue Cocoon does.
The ingredients of both products too are different, with a few overlaps.
The biggest difference is that Skin Creamery The Balm is actually fairly affordable at a local retail price of RM189/40ml, and as you need only so little product each time, the jar will last you a long while. Blue Cocoon on the other hand, costs a kidney (US$180/50ml) and must be shipped from the USA, which means exhorbitant shipping rates, or you must purchase a large amount to qualify for free shipping.
If you can afford it, and want a balm is that lush to the senses and really soothes very sensitive skin, spring for Blue Cocoon. However, if you want something that you can use not only on your face, but to soothe dry bits of skin on your body, and is fairly affordable, I’d say go with Skin Creamery The Balm.
It’s not just the price that is a major deciding factor, its the fact you can use it everywhere else without thinking too hard about it, and I think that’s more important, because it’s more practical a product.
Have you tried the Skin Creamery The Balm? Any other Skin Creamery products you like?
I’ve tried practically everything in the Skin Creamery brand 😀 So far, my skin loves everything I’ve tried, which is great about a brand. It’s simple, but sometimes, simple is what we need 🙂