Discovering Indian Beauty Products | Swap with All Souled Out

9 August 2015

Back in November, I first got chatting to Aria and planned our first beauty box swap (you can read all about that here). It was such a fun process, despite the fretting that our parcels had gone missing, and we couldn't wait to do another swap. So in June, we took to the drugstores of our respective countries, and picked up a bunch of beauty goodies to be packaged up and shipped halfway around the world. Here are the products that Aria picked out for me, if you want to see what I sent her, I'll link that post up here.

Aria mentioned the Lotus Herbals Safe Sun UV Screen Matte Gel SPF 50 way back at the start of summer and said that I needed it in my life. Around that time, I'd purchased a facial SPF from La Roche Posay, but the UV Screen Matte Gel swept in and stole my heart (I've mentioned both products in this post). Perfect for oily skin, it fully absorbs without leaving a greasy or sticky residue. This is perfection in a tube, and has fast become a holy grail.

Aria also sent me a selection of skincare products that are great for oily skin, from a brand called FabIndia. The products are the Skin Hydrating Cream with Vitamin C, Neem Tulsi Scrub Facial Wash, the Tea Tree Toner and the Aloe Vera Under Eye Gel. I'm planning a whole post dedicated to the range so I won't say too much, except for the fact that I'm pretty impressed with the quality and the packaging of the moisturiser and eye gel is adorable. My favourite product out of the four? Hands down the Neem Tulsi Scrub Facial Wash. This is great for deep cleansing and is particularly effective on blackheads.

Aria also sent me two products from Forest Essentials. This is a bit more of a luxury brand, which is evident by the gorgeous packaging of the lip balm above. They focus in on ayurveda, an Indian holistic healing practice with a scientific background. I have the Mashobra Wild Honey & Vanilla Silkening Shower Wash which smells absolutely gorgeous, and is like something you'd find in a posh hotel.

I also have the Sugared Rose Petal Luscious Lip Balm, which is just the prettiest thing. It is great for popping in your handbag as it has a good sized mirror. I was particularly pleased that it is beeswax based. A lot of lip balms are paraffin-heavy, which makes them utterly useless at keeping your lips soft over time. Interestingly, the brand is 100% natural and free from parabens, sulphates etc. Forest Essentials is a really lovely brand and I'd love to try a few more of their products.

Another brand I got to try was Passion Indulge. Aria picked out the Serenity Soap, which is scented with lavender (a favourite in our house) and grapefruit. I'm really looking forward to giving it a try as it is a more natural option, and I do love anything lavender. 

In our very first swap, I was introduced to the Indian beauty brand Lakme (see my first impressions here). A brand at the better end of the drugstore, I was really impressed with the quality, especially of the lip products. You can imagine my joy when two more came my way. The first is the Absolute Matte Lipcolour in Royal Rouge, a pretty warm pink with a hint of golden shimmer. I also have the Sculpt Studio Hi-definition Matte Lipstick in Pink Caress, a bright pinky red shade. I won't say too much about these now, as again I'm planning a separate post which will include swatches.

Aria also sent me some treats. My favourite was the Nestea Lemon Iced Tea Powder. I bought something similar years ago in a Korean food store in Birmingham, but it's quite difficult to track down over here now. I'm obsessed with iced tea, particularly in the summer, and this one was lovely. I'd only previously tried the lipton powders, but the Nestea one was just as good. The flavour also surprised me. I used to think I preferred peach iced tea, but I really enjoyed the lemon, and I'd definitely buy it if I could track it down. Aria also included some chocolates: Tim Tams, which are biscuits similar to Penguins in the UK, and Choco Sticks (I'm not 100% sure of the name of these). I preferred the Choco Sticks, which are yummy wafers with a rich chocolate filling.

This swap has been so much fun, and I made some incredible discoveries. My favourite products out of the whole swap have to be the iced tea, the Lotus Herbals SPF and the FabIndia Neem Tulsi Scrub. I wan't to say a massive thank you to Aria for everything, and I hope we'll continue to swap. There isn't anything I dislike here, which shows how good her taste is. If you want to see which products I sent Aria, I will link up her post here so you can check it out. While you're at it, take a look at her other blog posts. She's an avid photographer, so if you want to experience India in the comfort of your own living room, you need to give her travel posts a read.

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