I put in my first Lush holiday order of the season early. Pretty much the instant the holiday section went live, as a matter of fact. After my discovery last year that Lush’s holiday gift sets are deliberately overpriced, I’ll be avoiding the temptation of the gift sets (at least until the post-holiday sale starts), but I couldn’t resist trying out some of this year’s holiday products…
Last holiday’s big hit for me was Mrs. Whippy. I loved the fragrance, I loved how long the bomb lasted, and I especially loved the way the bomb surprised me the first time I used one with a sudden gush of dense, fragrant pink bubbles from inside the white outer layer. Well, Abominaball is the Mrs. Whippy of 2011.
Abominaball’s scent is a sweet, fruity mint, which I love — refreshing and relaxing at the same time, if that makes any sense. Like Mrs. Whippy, the outer layer eventually melts away to reveal a rush of dense foam inside. Mrs. Whippy’s is pink and berry-scented, but Abominaball’s is, naturally, blue and minty, and it turned my bath water a bright turquoise. Also like Mrs. Whippy, it lasted a long time and left my skin soft, moisturized and smelling amazing. I will be stocking up on this one before the season is over.
The marketing copy sold me on this one. From lushusa.com:
Watch the water change from blue to yellow to green as the yellow “flames” push the rocket around the tub.
I know what you’re wondering, and the answer is yes — it does look that cute in real life. Even better: It smells like candy. (Not any candy in particular; I spent a long time trying to pin down a specific scent, and finally realized it just had a sort of general candy smell.) I didn’t notice that its “flames” propel it around the tub as the copy promises, but it was a typically long-lasting and moisturizing Lush bath bomb. I didn’t like it quite as much as Abominaball, but I did like it quite a bit. And yes, the water did change colors. Maybe I’m easily entertained, but that makes me happy. I’d buy this again.
|The Jilted Elf|
The Jilted Elf Jelly, $10.95
This shower jelly was “inspired by a brilliant fig, honey and vodka cocktail,” and it’s packed with glitter. GLITTER. So I really, really wanted to love it. But so far, I don’t. I mean, I love the jelly texture and I love the glitter, and I love the way it lathers and cleans. But I can’t really get on board with the scent. At moments I think it might be growing on me, and at other times I almost hate it.
The smell is hard to describe. I wouldn’t say I smell fig, honey or vodka — it’s more sort of nondescriptly herbal. I’m not sure what it is about it that turns me off, but it’s definitely not festive or jolly. I hoped it would grow on me because I really wanted to like it. And because it was expensive. But I have to say this is a big disappointment for me. Definitely not festive, and definitely not worth eleven bucks.
|Celebrate Lip Tint|
Celebrate Lip Tint, $8.95
Another cocktail-inspired product, this lip tint was based on a Champagne cocktail at a perfumer’s wedding. It comes with shimmery gold popping candy on top, which is cute but impractical. (Who wants Pop Rocks on their lips?) I ended up just sweeping all the candy off with my finger and eating it. That’s right, I ate it, lip gloss residue and all. And you know what? It was delicious.
On to the actual product, which smells just wonderful — not so much like Champagne, I wouldn’t say, but sweet and fruity in a fresh, citrusy, wintry kind of way. I love the scent and the slightly sweet, slightly fizzy flavor. (Yes, fizzy flavor. Don’t ask me to explain it; you’ll know it when you taste it.) The texture is a little strange; it’s the tiniest bit gritty, to be perfectly honest, but not in a terribly unpleasant way.
My only problem with this lip tint is the tint itself. It’s just a little too pink and shimmery. Frosty pink isn’t my best look, unless I’m trying to rock a Mad Men look for a theme cocktail party. I’m going to try it over some darker lipsticks and see if I can get it to work for me, since I really do like the scent and the moisturizing feel. And if frosty and pink works for you, go for this.
|Australian Igloo Sugar Scrub|
Australian Igloo Sugar Scrub, $5.95
I love a good sugar scrub, despite the fact that empirically I understand how easy it would probably be to make my own. I mean, really: Sugar and oil. How hard is that? This is a cute little product, though, and while it isn’t perfect, I like it. The sugar is Fair Trade, which is great. And the scrub is both exfoliating and moisturizing, which is perfect for dry winter weather. My skin feels fantastic after I’ve used this in the shower. Lush describes the scent as pine, eucalyptus and sandalwood, but there‘s a sweet floral note to it, too, that I like a lot.
The only flaw with Australian Igloo Sugar Scrub is in deployment: It crumbles. I noticed as I used it the first time that the igloo was falling apart, so I grabbed an empty Big Shampoo container and deposited the quickly-disintegrating scrub into the tub for later use. I’ve ended up getting nearly a half-dozen uses out of one little igloo, but now it has a touch of Big scent to it. (Fortunately, I love the smell of Big, too.) Be prepared with a receptacle for this scrub; it will not keep its shape. It would be nice if it did, since the igloo shape fits quite naturally into the palm of your hand, but such is probably the nature of sugar scrubs.
And because this is Alaska, I feel the need to mention it: No, we do not live in igloos.