Review: L’Occitane Shea Fabulous Oil
I love body oils <3 I fall into that category of beauty bees who looooves when a body moisturiser leaves a protective layer on the skin as well as sinking in to provide long term hydration. That is why I also love body oils, as you can feel them on your skin and when they do eventually sink in, your skin is left feeling oh so smooth! When I saw this new offering from L’Occitane, I was quick to grab myself a bottle. The Shea Fabulous Oil is marketed as being a multi-purpose oil, perfect for use on your hair and body. The main oils in this mixture are sunflower, baobab, desert date, carrot and shea oil. This is how L’Occitane describe their Shea Fabulous Oil:
“The Fabulous Oil combines Shea oil with 2 rare plant oils from Africa (baobab and desert date palm) to help moisturise, protect and soften body and hair. Its unique and dry-finish formula is quickly absorbed without leaving any greasy film, for satiny smooth skin that feels more supple and comfortable. When used on hair, it leaves it soft, shiny and delicately fragranced.”
Let’s start off this review by examining the ingredients! What did surprise me is that this oil is marketed as a shea based product when really, only 5% of the formula is pure shea oil (though L’Occitane market this as a high concentration). I have been doing some research on shea oil and have found that shea oil makes up a small part of shea butter – but the more shea oil (olein) the softer the butter and higher quality it is (as then it absorbs into the skin more easily because it has less saturated fatty acids). The highest quality shea butters are found in Northern Uganda and South Sudan (because of civil unrest it’s even harder to obtain). You can see in the picture above that there are white floaty bits in the oil – I gather that is the shea butter because shea butter turns solid in lower temperatures. I have also realised that the words shea butter and shea oil are used interchangeably in most situations (including this one, as in the ingredient list, shea butter is listed not shea oil). Shea butter does have great benefits – it contains high concentrations of fatty acids (stearic and oleic acid, because it is essentially a plant fat), vitamin A & D, and allantoin. All of these nutrients mean that shea butter soothes the skin (it’s an anti-inflammatory) and neutralises free radicals while moisturising (it’s a humectant moisturiser – so it puts moisture back into the skin). I would have liked to see even more shea oil in this body/hair oil, but alas, it doesn’t seem to be an ingredient that is easily incorporated into liquid formulas.
What this oil does have a high concentration of is sunflower oil. Sunflower oil is easier to obtain than shea oil and also has some great skin benefits when applied topically. Not only does sunflower oil contain a high concentration of vitamin E, it’s great for re-enforcing the skins lipid barrier, so if you are prone to skin irritations, sunflower oil is great at protecting your skin when it comes to skin infections and rahes. This oil also contains desert date oil and boabab oil, which sound really exotic! Desert date oil is apparently quite a ‘dry oil’ and hence why I think L’Occitane has marketed this oil as a dry oil. I don’t think the Shea Fabulous Oil is an actual dry oil though, and this is probably due to the high concentration of sunflower oil and shea butter. I can most definitely feel the slip of the oil even after rubbing it into my skin. Desert date oil comes from the seeds of the fruit which grow on this particular tree (balanites aegyptiaca) and the oil has high concentrations of vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, zinc and thiamine. It has emollient properties, perfect for use on the hair and body. The antioxidant properties of this oil (thanks to it’s high concentration of vitamin E) make it highly stable, even when kept in very high temperatures. Boabab oil also come from the seeds of the fruit which grow on the boabab tree, and contains fatty acids, vitamin D, A, E and F. I think it’s great that L’Occitane has included this nutrient rich oils into the Shea Fabulous oil. And lastly, the oil also contains carrot seed oil which might surprise a lot of beauties out there! Carrot seed oil contains vitamin C and E, and carotenoids which can help boost the skins own protection against UV rays.
To me this oil smells very much so like a combination of sunflower oil and baby powder, so the sunflower oil is very noticeable. It’s quite lovely without being offensive. I also love that this oil is in a glass bottle. Glass bottles and jars aways feel so much more ‘luxe’ than plastic ever will. Glass also helps keep oils stable and ‘fresh’ as plastic can often make your oils go rancid (hence why you will almost never find cooking oils in plastic bottles). It doesn’t feel like a dry oil to me as I mentioned above, but this doesn’t bother me so much. You do need to wait a while for it to totally sink in and it does look quite shiny on the skin for a while. I love the sheen oils leave on your skin, especially in summer! It is very moisturising and I find that my skin is happy for a day or two after application. I have used it once on the ends/tips of my hair which worked quite well, however I personally wouldn’t put it through the lengths of my hair (like I do Moroccan Oil or Macadamia Healing Oil Treatment). In saying that, I have very fine hair, so if you have quite thick hair, this might work well for you!
Is it a body product I would repurchase? Probably not. It’s lovely, but it’s just not that highly memorable. I would love it if this oil had a higher concentration of baobab and desert date oils in it’s formula instead of sunflower oil, as then it would be something new and exciting to try. In saying that, it isn’t a bad product in any sense of the idea. Who knows, maybe during summer I will change my mind and grab another bottle if I feel like getting a simple yet hydrating body oil, which doesn’t contain ‘fillers’ within its formula. You can find this oil on Adore Beauty for $45 (free shipping is included).
Ingredients: Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Coco-Caprylate/ Caprate, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Parfum/Fragrance , Balanites Roxburghii Seed Oil, Adansonia Digitata Seed Oil, Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Seed Oil, Tocopherol, Coumarin Linalool, Citronellol, Limonene, Benzyl Salicylate, Geraniol, Citral.
Do you enjoy body oils beauties? What are your favourite highly moisturising body products?
Catch ya next time,
P.S I decided to not do a monthly favourites post for September as I didn’t have to many ‘new favourites’ in my collection, but hopefully I should have enough for October if I give it some extra time 🙂 Happy October beauties!
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