And the results are in!!! Yours truly reporting back for the Budget Babe on E.l.f.’s line of bath and body products. I have tested and rated these products based on 5 criteria; Value, Presentation/Packing, Scent, Performance, and Overall impression. Please note that while I did test each scent and each product, I did not test each product in every scent (no use for 5 of everything!) Here we go...
Lavender Blossom Cleansing Anti-Bacterial Hand Soap
Value: Meh. Not really a budget buy in my humble opinion. You can get a big ol’ container of liquid hand soap at Target for a fraction of the cost, not really feeling this.
Presentation/Packaging: The packaging is pretty, but its also pretty average. I don’t think its cute enough to make me want to spend the extra few dollars for it.
Scent: This scent claims to be Lavender with Chamomile undertones. Now, I’m not exactly a “nose” (French perfume developer) however I do know the scent of Lavendar (and Chamomile for that matter) and this is not it. Its pretty obvious to me that there is absolutely no real lavender used in this product (ingredient list read: fragrance). It smells like the foam that came with my Ariel Barbie Seahorse when I was 11. Wack. Everyone and their uncle knows lavender, so you won’t smell budget, you’ll smell cheap. The scent also lingers for a long time.
Performance: The soap works nicely. Nice lather, and nice feeling afterward, doesn’t dry out the skin.
Overall: I’m not going to throw it out the window, but I’m not going to purchase it again. The “lavender” that doesn’t smell like lavender is a huge turn-off, and I can get much cheaper liquid soap that works just as well. Even with a different scent I would still say its not budget enough.
Vanilla Coconut Conditioning Body Butter
Value: Good. The tub is a nice big size, and its packed to the hilt with body butter. Although the things we want to be working on us (sweet almond oil, jojoba oil, coconut butter, and coconut milk) are not the first on the list, at least they’re before fragrance. Good amount of product for the price.
Presentation/Packaging: The tub is nice, and we’re a fan of being able to scoop out nice thick butter from a easy access container. Nice graphics, overall cute appearance.
Scent: Whoa!!! Offensive! Open the jar and take a whiff and you get assaulted by a strong chemically coconut scent. Personally I really disliked it a great deal, and I normally a big fan of coconut vanilla. The scent also leaves skin almost immediately, which in this case is a plus, while normally I would say I want a beautiful scent to linger.
Performance: Works pretty well. I think it does its job, conditions rough spots nicely. I do like it for rough heels and dry tootsies, although the smell was so offensive I was hesitant to try it anywhere above my ankles.
Overall: Like the butter, hate the scent. I would buy again in another scent.
Cucumber Melon Soothing Bath Gel
Value: Ok. As a body wash- Nice sized container, but, for the quality of the product I would say stick to drugstore brands, which are cheaper. To be used as a shaving lubricant- Great. Really made my skin super slick and the shaving process really nice, just a little goes a long way so as a alternative to shaving gel I would say this is a good value.
Presentation/Packaging: Cute, ok, whatever. Didn’t really do much for me, and the container is really hard plastic so squeezing is out (have to wait for the soap to drip down, borrrrring yawn)
Scent: Pleasant, sweet and refreshing. Your typical cucumber melon fragrance, You pretty much get what you expect with this one (which compared to the others is not a bad thing). However, the scent does not stay on your skin once you wash it off (good or bad depending on your preferences).
Performance: Works well. Lathers great, smells great in the shower, awesome lube for shaving. No freaky residue, and no dried out skin.
Overall: One of my favorites from the set. Although not a bargain for body wash, its surprising ability to replace shave gel makes it a budget winner in my book. I simply felt clean, which means it did its job.
Pineapple Mango Nourishing Body Lotion
Value: Fair. Ok sized bottle, but compared to like a huge thing of Vaseline body lotion with Shea Butter for $3 its not really that big of a bargain. Here the important ingredients are low on the ingredient list way after fragrance (good test of amount of product, since very little fragrance is used), where there the cacao seed butter is like third on the list with fragrance coming in next to last… ouch to Elf.
Presentation/Packaging: Average. Looks like Victoria Secrets Lotion packaging.
Scent: Ok. I think I’m forcing myself to like it, because I feel so critical I want to like something! Its fruity, and pineapple-y, but its also chemically…. The scent also fades within minutes.
Performance: Its got a pretty thin consistency, which means this size container won’t last long. It takes a lot to do the job, it feels nice, but you can feel it sitting on top of your skin. Didn’t really sink in. (Still prefer the Vaseline with Shea butter for 3 bucks, hands down)
Overall: I will finish the container in probably six months when I’m all out of my other lotions and desperate, but I will not repurchase this item.
Peony Petal Moisturizing Hand Cream:
Value: Wack. What you get isn’t worth the four dollars.
Presentation/Packaging: Boring, cute, whatever.
Scent: Smells EXACTLY like the pink soap you use to wash your hands in public bathrooms (aka, generic mass-produced floral scent). So unless you want to smell like you just showered in a Burger King or Great America bathroom sink, avoid this scent.
Performance: This hand lotion gave me a rash. I had to wash it off immediately to make the burning stop, so I can’t really tell you if it works or not.
Overall: Would never use this product. Although more expensive, the value of a good hand cream like L’Occitane Hand Cream is in the end more budget. You use less, the huge container lasts longer, and you’re getting a good quality product made with quality ingredients.
In conclusion I have to say I’m not a fan of these products. The ingredient lists read like a laboratory experiment, and the texture and scents of the products really reflect lots of chemicals and high turnover, low production cost consumerism. The labels are misleading and promise all the beautiful all natural ingredients we crave, while in fact the amounts in the actual product are probably close to negligible. I don’t think they’re a bargain, and I really don’t recommend using them. Sorry if you’re disappointed, I was too! But seriously, bargain and budget in the beauty world especially means finding the best quality for the price, not just the cheapest.
Look for an upcoming review of e.l.f.'s brand new line of mineral makeup.
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