Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Mummy Must Have Review | Gaia Skin Naturals

I've had sensitive skin for as long as I can remember. I had horrible eczema as a child and I still break out in hives at the drop of a hat. Because of this I've had to be very selective with what products I use on my skin. To be honest my skin has been rather neglected since I had bub, but I've started changing that lately thanks to GAIA.

I first heard about GAIA from a friend after having bub. I was looking for an alternative bath wash for bub because the one we were using was causing reactions. Bub has super sensitive skin due to her dairy allergy which exacerbated her dry skin and caused eczema. My friend suggested GAIA baby hair and body wash as an organic alternative. She'd been using it with her little boy for a few weeks without any issues, so we decided to give it a go with bub, and have never looked back.

What I hadn't realised for the last few months though is that GAIA also have an extensive range of skin and body products for women and men as well as babies.





GAIA SKIN + BODY PRODUCTS

The GAIA Skin + Body range includes gentle cleansers, toner, moisturisers and body washes created using the same skin philosophies as GAIA Natural Baby products. The products are formulated with skin-softening organic oils, vitamins and organic botanical extracts to care for your skin without causing dryness or irritation. They're also infused with luxurious essential oil blends. I've been using the foaming cleanser, refreshing toner, intensive moisturiser, lavender and frankincense body wash and the lavender and frankincense body moisturiser. 

I have to admit I've never been good with a skin regime. I'm not one to use a heap of top dollar products and spend hours preening myself in front of the mirror each morning. Mainly because I value my sleep and I always preferred to sleep for an extra half an hour than spend it in front of a mirror. My daily skin routine has always been a quick application of moisturiser, primer and then makeup. The quickest and simplest application of products that allowed me to get out the door to work in the shortest amount of time. My process for removing makeup was always wash it off in the shower at night. 

To be honest since I've had bub that routine has pretty much fallen by the wayside altogether. I've put her needs before mine since she was born and lathering up my skin didn't seem as important anymore. For the past few months I've been lucky if I spent two minutes slapping some moisturiser on in the morning, but I've recently decided to try and fit more me time into my day and one of the ways I want to do this is by valuing my skin more and spending more time taking care of me. So, I've been really grateful that I've discovered the GAIA range of skincare products for women as they're helping me build some more me time into my day.

GAIA Foaming Cleanser

I haven't used cleanser in years, probably since I was a teenager, boy have I been missing out. The GAIA foaming cleanser is so nice and smells divine! I'm not usually one for smelling things given I have really bad sinus, but I could sniff this stuff all day. I never knew grapefruit + jasmine smelt so good.

The best feature of the foaming cleanser for me is that its free from soap and sulphates making it perfect for my sensitive and already dry skin. I love that I can lather it on and rinse it off and my skin doesn't feel dry afterwards. I love that my skin feels fresh and soft after rinsing it off. I also haven't had any irritation or reactions from it. I use the cleanser daily to clean and revitalise my skin and its amazing how much better I feel now that I'm using it.

GAIA Refreshing Toner

Just like cleanser, I haven't used toner in years. I'm really not sure why as I absolutely love it. There's nothing more soothing than spritzing ones face with a beautiful cool mist, so I'm discovering. 

The GAIA refreshing toner features many organic ingredients which combine to cool, soothe and hydrate the skin while toning and tightening pores. The key ingredient is organic rosewater which calms and hydrates skin and also helps to diminish redness. One of my close friends has long been advocating the benefits of rosewater and now I know why. I suffer from redness on my face and the toner really does help to calm it down a lot. The toner is also free from alcohol and petrochemicals (which is good because my skin is super sensitive to petrochemicals).

I've been using the toner each morning along with the cleanser and facial moisturiser and also spritz it occasionally throughout the day if I need a quick pick me up. It's also great for soothing sunburn, which I (unfortunately) found out first-hand last week after forgetting to use sunscreen on my back when we went to the lagoon.

GAIA Facial Moisturiser

Moisturiser is pretty much the only facial skin care product I have been using for the past few years, I get points for that right? I've always had to be careful with the moisturisers I use though as my face is particularly sensitive and breaks out in hives and red blotches and welts very easily. For this reason I've stuck to the same moisturiser for years and never strayed for fear of having a bad reaction to other brands.

The GAIA facial moisturiser is a really lovely light and easily absorbed moisturiser that leaves my skin feeling hydrated and soft afterwards. It didn't cause any adverse reactions, which is probably because its free from petrochemicals which are found in a lot of other brands. In addition the moisturiser is free from mineral oil, silicone derivatives, lanolin propylene glycol and paraben preservatives. Instead its packed full of organic extracts, organic oils and vitamins to provide intensive moisturisation and nourishment.

I love that it comes in a pump pack as its much easier, and less messy, to apply than a tub moisturiser. Its a great base for under makeup or great on its own. The only thing its missing compared to my normal moisturiser is an SPF rating, but given its a much larger and cheaper bottle I'm willing to overlook that.

GAIA Lavender & Frankincense Body Wash

For the past few months I've been using QV wash as my 'body wash' instead of using soap. I find due to my really dry skin I can't really use soap because it just dries out my skin too much. When it came to body washes I was having reactions to so many that I just gave up and switched to QV which my doctor suggested. The QV wash has done the job, but its really quite boring, and there's definitely nothing remotely luxurious about it.

I'm really excited to have found the GAIA body wash because I can now use a proper, fragrant, soft and luxurious body wash again without the fear of breaking out in hives. I did find the lavender and frankincense a little bit overpowering the first time I used it because I've been used to using a fragrance free wash for so long, but I quickly got used to it. 

The GAIA body wash leaves my skin literally glowing. It washes my skin without drying it out and leaves it with a glistening sheen which I've never experienced before. Its really amazing. Like other GAIA products its free from soap, sulphates and petrochemicals. Its enriched with numerous oils including organic avocado oil, evening primrose oil and omega 3 oils (amongst others) to help nourish and soften the skin, and it certainly does that.

GAIA Body Moisturiser

The only time I've really used a body moisturiser was when I was pregnant and obsessed with trying to avoid stretch marks. Given my dry skin though I really should've been using it all the time. Judging by how quickly my skin absorbs the moisturiser, my poor skin has obviously been in desperate need of moisturiser for some time.

The GAIA body moisturiser is again free from propylene glycol, petrochemicals, silicone derivatives, lanolin or mineral oils to minimise irritation. The only time I have a reaction to it is if I've shaved my legs in the shower and apply moisturiser once I get out. I have that same reaction to all moisturisers though because I suffer from folliculitis irritated by shaving which appears if I apply any type of cream on my legs after shaving. I just moisturise in the morning on those days and not after a shower.

gaia baby max shampooGAIA NATURAL BABY PRODUCTS

GAIA Natural Baby is a range of baby skincare products that are gentle, moisturising and non-irritating. The GAIA Natural Baby range includes products that are essential within the first 5 yrs of a childs life. Products include a number of bath and body washes, shampoo and conditioner, moisturiser and lotions, baby powder and wipes.

Originally we were only using the GAIA Natural Baby hair + body wash because that was the only product our local Coles stocked when the GAIA baby products were first recommended to us. We didn't realise at the time that they have so many other baby products available. We've since discovered the baby shampoo, conditioning detangler, baby massage oil, skin soothing lotion and bamboo baby wipes.

gaia organic natural baby skincare products

GAIA Baby Shampoo

Bub gets her hair washed every night at this stage (even though she probably doesn't need to). Its been built into her bath time routine so we're sticking with it for now. The good thing is she now lets us do it with minimum fuss.

The GAIA baby shampoo is soap and sulphate free like other GAIA products and is very gentle on bub's scalp and doesn't hurt her eyes if she forgets (or refuses) to tilt her head back when we're rinsing her hair. Its pH neutral allowing it to gently cleanse her hair without stripping all the hairs natural protective oils. The shampoo is also enriched with organic evening primrose oil to soften and condition.

GAIA baby shampoo can also be used in conjunction with the baby massage oil to help loosen and remove cradle cap in younger babies. How I wish we had of known about it back then.

GAIA Conditioning Detangler

The conditioning detangler is a spray on, leave in formula that reminds me of the leave in conditioner sprays available for adults. It can be used on wet hair after washing to condition and also on dry hair to detangle knots and aid brushing. Every night after her bath bub has her hair brushed before bed (much to her disgust) and the GAIA conditioning detangler has definitely helped with this process and alleviated some of the protesting.

The detangler spray is enriched with certified organic oils, wheat protein and pro-vitamin B5. It helps to strengthen hair while also leaving it soft and silky (and knot free). The conditioning detangler spray can also be used on anyone's hair so if I want to spruce up my hair with some leave in conditioner I know where to grab it (I'm sure bub won't mind).

GAIA Baby Massage Oil

When bub was born we had to make sure we massaged her skin every day because her dairy allergy made her skin super dry and cracked. Without massage oil it would peel and flake every day. Her massages provided a great way for us to connect with each other as well as providing the benefit of deep moisturisation. 

GAIA baby massage oil is made from sweet almond oil combined with a hint of certified organic lavender and chamomile essential oils. The massage oil is mineral oil free. She doesn't have the patience to sit still long enough to have a proper massage at 19 months, but we can still get in some quick applications. It can also be used on adults (woohoo for me) and during pregnancy.

GAIA Skin Soothing Lotion

Although bub's skin has improved a lot now that her dairy allergy is managed properly, she's still prone to dry skin at times. Lately I've started to notice that shes got a few patches of bubbling and peeling skin around her toes. Before we found the GAIA skin soothing lotion we didn't have a moisturising cream specifically for bub. I'm glad that we have something now because she obviously still requires added moisture at times.

The skin soothing lotion contains beeswax, zinc and castor oil which creates a barrier to protect skin. The lotion is a nice thick cream that can be used on newborns, babies and toddlers. I love that the lotion has numerous uses such as soothing bites and grazes, moisturising dry skin and it can be used as a nappy cream.

GAIA Bamboo Baby Wipes

Bub has been blessed with inherited my naturally sensitive skin so we've had to be particularly careful when choosing wipes. I've stuck to hypo-allergenic, fragrance free wipes because I've found wipes with artificial fragrance made her skin react. Considering wipes are used on the most delicate area of a baby's skin its very important to me to use a soft and gentle wipe with no nasty chemicals.

The GAIA bamboo baby wipes are free from alcohol, petrochemicals, soaps, sulphates, chlorine bleach and paraben preservatives. The wipes have a very light natural scent. They're made from 100% biodegradable eco-friendly USDA certified organic bamboo. I've long been a fan of bamboo as a natural fabric alternative for bub so I love that these are made from bamboo. The wipes are super soft and haven't caused her any irritation. 


ABOUT GAIA SKIN NATURALS

GAIA Skin Naturals is an Australian company based in Victoria which manufactures pure, natural, organic skin care products especially formulated for sensitive skin. GAIA's mission is to provide a brand that people can trust, selling high quality clean and green products to the mainstream population without the high price tag normally associated with natural and organic products. GAIA Natural Baby was created in 2002 by mum Michelle Vagrinec after her baby developed eczema when he was 8 weeks old. Michelle struggled to find products suitable for his sensitive skin so she set about creating a range of gentle non-irritating products. Read the whole story here.

The original GAIA Natural Baby brand was extended to incorporate men's skin care products {GAIA made for men} and has since been further extended to include a pregnancy range {GAIA pure pregnancy}, women's skincare range {GAIA SKIN + BODY} and other children's products which all sit under the GAIA Skin Naturals banner. All products are designed with sensitive skin in mind.
"We have chosen NOT to use ingredients known to cause skin irritation or that are suspected to be harmful so there's NO sulphates, petrochemicals, lanolin, paraben preservatives, propylene glycol, phthalates or artificial fragrances in any of our products" - Michelle Vagrinec

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I'm really loving allocating time each morning and night to spend on my skincare routine and my body is thanking me for it. I absolutely love that all the GAIA skincare products are natural, organic and free from nasties. GAIA is a brand I know I can trust to provide an exceptional, affordable, product without fear of irritation or uncomfortable skin reactions for both myself and bub. 


If you have sensitive skin and are looking for a quality, organic skincare range then GAIA could be the perfect fit for you too. If you'd like to try out GAIA products I have a special discount code for 20% off GAIA SKIN + BODY and GAIA Made For Men ranges*. To receive your discount simply enter the code FMSY15 at the checkout when ordering via www.gaiaskinnaturals.com. If you want to try the items without buying the full sized products, there are mini travel packs available and you can also request free sample sachets via the website.

20 percent off Gaia skin + body and Gaia made for men

Have you tried any of the GAIA products?


Toni x


* 20% OFF Terms and Conditions
Valid via GAIA Skin Naturals online store only.
Valid for GAIA SKIN + BODY and Made For Men ranges only.
Australian residents only.
Valid until 30 June 2015.

Disclosure - I was gifted GAIA products in exchange for a review. I did not receive payment for this review. All opinions expressed in this review are based on my experience with the products as per my disclosure policy.

Linking with Jess

24 comments:

  1. I hadn't heard of Gaia products before Toni. The name reminds me of Olivia Newton-John's retreat somewhere in the hinterland of Byron Bay that I wish I was wealthy enough to go to!! I have sensitive skin also so it's good to be aware of another brand that caters for that!

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    1. Yea its really great to have a brand that caters specifically for sensitive skin. And ditto to going to Oliva Newton-John's retreat.

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  2. I've seen the Gaia products before but haven't tried them. I might give them a go because my face is breaking out like crazy in the heat, but the cleanser dries out the areas of my skin that aren't oily.

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    1. I can't imagine how horrible it must be up there! I'm dying down here now that the air-con has shat itself again :(

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  3. Oh, thanks for sharing. I like the idea of something natural and gentle on my skin!

    Deb

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    1. No worries Deb, I'm all for anything natural.

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  4. I am intrigued about the lavender and frankincense shower wash. I always find shower gels and creams dry my skin. Might take up that discount to get some!

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    1. Its so good Bec! Seriously it like puts a waterproof sheen on your skin in the shower after you use it so your skin goes all sparkly (sad thing is it goes away when you dry yourself, but it doesn't dry out the skin). It's so nice!

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  5. I've never tried them but they could be just the thing for my girls who both have sensitive skin. And I love that you found the time for you again, so hard to do after bub comes into your life.

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    1. It's a work in progress, but I figure if I start with small steps one day I might be wearing full makeup and styling my hair and clothes each day again :)

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  6. I used Gaia when the kids were little and loved it! I found it was perfect for their skin, and mine can have sensitive skin.
    I had no idea that they had adult products either. I'm off to check them out.

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    1. I know right! I fully thought they only did baby products. I'm trying to convince Trent to try the mens range now :)

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  7. I've only ever used Gaia on the kids. I don't know why I didn't think of it for me. I don't have any major skin issues, but my skin can get very dry and I react with certain products like Clinique for example. I currently use a milky garnier product as my cleanser. It's nearly empty so I'll look out for a Gaia option next :)

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    1. Yea you should give them a go Renee, I've found them really good and I react to everything.

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  8. Haven't come across this brand before and I'm having terrible sensitivity issues at the moment.

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    1. I'm surprised you haven't heard of it Raychael, you seem to know about everything!

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  9. Thanks for sharing - I have really sensitive skin too so can't use any of the fancy body washes etc for more than a day or two or I come up in a rash. I'll have to give these a try!

    I thought you had lovely skin when I met you last week so you must be doing something right :-)

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    1. Thanks Janet :)
      It was probably the layers of make-up I smacked on for the day lol!

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  10. We use this brand too for our toddler. It's one of our favourites.
    For yourself and bub, have you tried goats milk soaps? They are fantastic for eczema and sensitive skins and have quite a cult following. I have replaced my soaps with this now with wonderful results - no more dry skin!

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    1. I've heard of goats milk soap, but the paediatrician said she can't have goat's milk or sheep's milk products either :(

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  11. I love this stuff for bubs. I always give a set as a baby shower gift- it's lovely.

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    1. Its such a nice baby gift :) I love the mini sets, they're so cute!

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  12. I have never tried them, but maybe I should as I have sensitive skin too x

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    1. They're perfect for sensitive skin Sonia, so glad I discovered the women's range.

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