Welcome to Better Nutrition's annual Best of Beauty Awards! This special section features our favorite personal care products—from bubble bath to mascara to natural hair color.
Please Note: All “Better Nutrition Try It!” offers are good only while supplies last.
Natural personal care is a $2.78 billion business, and one of the fastest growing categories in natural products store sales, according to a recent Natural Foods Merchandiser’s Market Overview. Natural cosmetics consumers are motivated not only by their own health, but by making buying choices that protect the environment. Savvy shoppers know that “green,” “organic,” and “ethical” are more than fashionable, they make sense. Who wants to put products full of potentially harmful chemicals and synthetics into and on their bodies?
To help you make sense of the plentiful personal care products on the market, we present our second-annual Best of Beauty Awards (BOBA). After trying countless natural beauty and personal care products, and conducting extensive surveys with natural products retailers nationwide, we put together a list that applauds the products that really work. And we’ ve added three new categories this year—the Top 10 Best New Products, Top 10 Natural Beauty Classics, and our Beauty Editor’s Top 10 Favorites—to give you more choices. It is our aim that you discover your personal favorites from our list and spread the word.
- Packed with cellular-renewal ingredients, Derma-e Age-Defying Night Crème helps rejuvenate your skin while you sleep. This moisturizer helps reduce fine lines and wrinkles and prevent future skin damage.
- Looking and feeling good starts from the inside. Diamond Herpanacine DIAMOND Étern-L nourishes the body with potent antiaging nutrients, such as alpha-lipoic acid and Resveratrol.
- Remain fabulous in your 40s with Emerita Day Face-Cream. Gain firm and toned skin with this pH-balanced and unscented cream, which is specifically designed for women over age 40.
- For smoother skin, turn to Nutra-Lift Grape Seed Foaming Face PolisH. This polish removes dead cells and unblocks clogged pores with antioxidant-packed grape seeds.
- Make bathing a relaxing experience for you and your baby. Aura Cacia Calming Milk & Oath Bath contains gentle, safe oat and milk powders and essential oils that help soothe babies.
- Hugo Naturals Shea Butter Chamomile Shampoo & Baby Wash uses aloe, calendula, and arnica, which keeps your baby’s skin soft and healthy. Plus, the scent is heavenly.
- Need a gift? You can’ t go wrong with the Weleda Calendula Baby Starter KiT, which includes all-natural cream, diaper care, lotion, oil, and soap.
- With its extra-long-lasting bubbles, Canus Goat’s Milk Foaming Milk Bath will leave your skin feeling soft and renewed —the perfect indulgence after a long day.
- Dream yourself away to the south of France with EO french Lavender Bath Salts. They soften and cleanse, while drawing toxins from the body.
- Fresh and silky feeling, Giovanni Cleanse body wash in Cassifleur White Tea, feels as great on your skin as it looks in your shower.
- FuturBiotics Hair, Skin & Nails for Women has a plethora of vitamins, minerals, and herbs that your hair, skin, and nails need to look healthy and youthful.
- Reduce wrinkles, strengthen hair and nails, and promote bone mineral density with Natrol BioSil Capsules featuring silicon.
- As we age, collagen and keratin decrease. Solgar Skin, Nails & Hair Advanced MSM Formula Tablets make up for this reduction in nutrients to ensure a healthy look and feel.
- Revive your aging skin with Source Naturals Skin Eternal Hyaluronic Acid Tablets. Collagen, hyaluronic acid, and other nutrients promote skin suppleness and elasticity.
- The intense lavender scent and rich lather of Avalon Organics Lavender Bath & Shower Gel will put you in a good mood, ready to face the day.
- The herbs in collective wellbeing body butter in aloe & chamomile locks in moisture and protects skin from harmful sun and heat. It’s nongreasy but extra nourishing.
- Dry, itchy skin disappears with Nature’s Gate Colloidal Oatmeal Moisturizing Lotion, a fragrance-free lotion that’s perfect for everyday use.
- Nourish neglected feet with Shikai Borage Dry Skin Therapy Foot Cream. It softens, soothes, and boosts cell regeneration.
- Make your lips extra kissable with Dr. Hauschka Lipstick. Choose from 12 colors that nourish and protect with rose petals, almond extract, and jojoba oil.
- Ecco Bella FlowerColor Blush boasts seven beautiful colors made from natural pigments to fit all skin tones, and it’s fortified with vitamin E to protect skin.
- Create full and lush eyelashes with Larenim Mineralash Mascara (not shown). It strengthens and separates lashes to make them thicker and longer.
- A great cure for sensitive skin, Hugo Naturals Sea Fennel & Passionflower Deodorant is fragrance-free, contains no alcohol, and uses rice powder to absorb perspiration. The fresh scent is lovely.
- Kiss My Face Liquid Rock Fragrance Free Deodorant inhibits bacterial growth and eliminates odors. Apply once, and you’ re good to go for the rest of the day.
- Hops, a key ingredient in Tom’s of Maine Natural Deodorant Stick in Woodspice, inhibits the growth of bacteria, while the woodspice masks odors beautifully.
- Royal jelly is the superb wrinkle-fighting ingredient in beeceuticals organics bee line free rejuvenating eye cream. Now you can be the queen with gorgeous eyes!
- The arnica, vitamin K, and antioxidant powerhouse goji berry in Home health goji berry eye cream instantly help reduce undereye circles and puffiness.
- Say good-bye to wrinkles and dark circles around the eyes. Reviva Labs Firming Eye Serum nourishes the skin and lightens dark circles.
- Wake up tired, dry skin and boost your mood with the uplifting scent of Aura Cacia Aromatherapy Body Cream in Patchouli/Sweet orange.
- Nature’s Alchemy 100 Pure Sesame Oil is a true beauty staple—try as a skin or hair moisturizer, or mix with other essential oils in the bath.
- NOW foods Lavender Oil is perfect for diffusing or pouring into a hot bath. Try just before bed for blissful relaxation. Facial Cleansers
- Enjoy radiant skin with Alba Botanica Pineapple Enzyme Facial Cleanser. Made with aloe, papaya, awapuhi, and pineapple.
- Designed for adult and teenage acne, Annemarie Borlind Purifying Care Series (including Purifying Care Facial Cream and Cleansing Gel for Blemished Skin) helps clear and heal blemishes with licorice, yarrow, and other herbs.
- Desert Essence Thoroughly Clean Face Wash treats your skin with tea tree oil, a natural antiseptic that works gently to cleanse and keep skin clear.
- Make shaving a breeze with Burt’s Bees Natural Skin Care for Men Shave Cream. It fights irritation and soothes skin.
- Caribbean Sol Biodegradable Sunscreen SPF 25 is a paraben-free, eco-friendly way to protect your skin from harmful UV rays. You’ ll love the subtle scent too.
- A big hit in Europe, Weleda Birch Cellulite Oil uses organic plant extracts to stop the formation of cellulite and help nourish the skin.
- Herbatint permanent Herbal HairColour Gel uses nontoxic herb extracts and plant proteins that impart luxurious color.
- The antioxidants and red wine extracts in Desert Essence Organics Italian Red Grape Shampoo make damaged hair a thing of the past.
- Give your hair the vitamins it deserves. Earth Science Olive & Avocado Conditioning Hair Masque is enriched with vitamins A, D, and E, which all help to nourish and strengthen hair.
- Good for all hair types, Head Organics 2-in-1 Shampoo & Conditioner hydrates and fortifies your locks from root to tip.
- Dyeing your hair can often be damaging, but not with Surya brasil Color Fixation Restorative Conditioner. It rejuvenates hair, giving it a natural, smooth, and shiny feel.
- Save your lips from extreme weather conditions and environmental pollutants with Desert Essence Lip Rescue with Jojoba Oil.
- Dry lips? Try Rachel Perry Lip Lover Mint Tingle (not shown) for protection and a cool, fresh flavor.
- Smooth and heal lips with TCCD MoistStic Natural Lip Protection. Tea tree oil, vitamin E, and more give your lips the protection they deserve.
- Freshen breath and whiten teeth with Auromère Licorice Toothpaste. It soothes sensitive gums and purifies your mouth.
- Green tea, the main ingredient in Dr. Ken’s all natural Antibacterial Mouthwash maximum Care in Spearmint Cool, is a natural cavity fighter and a major antioxidant. It helps prevent gum disease and bad breath.
- Time to put that smile back on your face! Jason Natural Sea Fresh Tooth Gel in Deep Sea Spearmint contains gems from the ocean, including sea salts and minerals to strengthen gums and teeth.
- Nature’s Answer PerioBrite Toothpaste is fluoride-free. It blends lysine with key herbs, essential oils, and phytoplenolin extract, leaving your breath fresh for hours.
- Treat acne with Collective WellBeing Warming Pore Cleansing Scrub. It opens up pores and soaks up dirt, leaving your face fresh and clean
- A wonderful treat, Pangea Organics Matcha Tea ACai Goji Berry Facial Mask will leave your complexion radiant and glowing.
- Protect and restore your skin with Zia Natural Skincare Ultimate “C” Serum. This serum promotes collagen and elastin production to reduce signs of aging.
- Pamper your skin with Dr. Ohhira’s Essential Formulas probiotic Kampuku Soap. This vegan soap feels great and contains natural plant extracts and herbs.
- Packed with minerals, salt, and mud from the Dead Sea, One With Nature Dead Sea Salt Soap helps stimulate blood circulation and purify skin cells.
- Organix South Neem Complexion Soap helps troubled skin with neem, an Ayurvedic herb with antibacterial properties. It’s great for acne-prone skin.
- Cleanse your face and body with Vermont Soapworks Oatmeal Lavender Soap. The scent will leave you smiling all day.
Top 10 New Products
- Pamper and protect your skin while you shave with Aubrey Organics Crème de la Shave in toasted almond, a deliciously smooth shaving cream made with rich emollients and fruit extracts. It also comes in other tantalizing fragrances.
- Hold back the clock with flora flor • Essence rejuvenating cream, an antioxidant-rich face cream that minimizes the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, while smoothing and toning the skin.
- Boost hair’s body with Giovanni Cosmetics Root 66 Max Volume shampoo and conditioner. Soybean protein strengthens strands, and botanical extracts and oils hydrate naturally instead of coating hair and weighing it down.
- Pssst! Nature’s secret for healthy, youthful skin is in Green Tea Skin Natural Anti-Aging cream. ECGC, the active compound in green tea, is a powerful antioxidant, cell rejuvenator and anti-inflammatory agent.
- Clean and freshen up your complexion with Himalaya Herbal Healthcare Organique Neem & Turmeric Face Wash. Herbs neem and turmeric—both antibacterial and anti-inflammatory—help normalize oil production, correct hyperpigmentation, and soften skin.
- Wipe away wrinkles with mychelle dermaceuticals notox anti-wrinkle serum, which delivers five peptides (chains of amino acids) to the skin to support collagen and elastin production for a smoother, firmer, and younger-looking complexion.
- Moisturize while you lather with Nature’s Gate Pomegranate Sunflower Velvet Moisture Body Wash. This fruity scented blend of seven skin-conditioning moisturizers delivers long-lasting hydration.
- With just a dab of pacifica Malibu Lemon Blossom Solid Perfume, you can feel as care-free and captivating as a sunny day at the beach. The citrusy-floral scent is made with organic soy, coconut wax, and natural oils.
- Temporarily fill in and smooth away lines, bags, and puffiness with reviva labs Change up instant line remover (not shown). Use around eyes, mouth, forehead, neck or décolleté . It lasts all day.
- Looking for a natural deodorant that works without an overpowering scent? tccd naturally fresh deodorant roll-on in ocean breeze delivers on both counts. This blend of natural oils and extracts are added to minerals salts for true 24-hour protection. No parabens are used.
- Thirsty skin will drink up alba botanica very emollient body lotion, unscented. It’s a light, but potent lotion with natural plant emollients that soothe and protect dry, sensitive skin.
- Protect your pucker with burt’s bees beeswax lip balm, which moisturizes lips with coconut and sunflower oils, and seals in hydration with beeswax. You can use it on healthy lips for a little peppermint tingle.
- Made of 100 percent natural mineral salts, which are hypoallergenic, paraben free, nonsticky and non-staining, french transit crystal body deodorant, roll-on is ideal if you have sensitive skin or allergies, or simply want a healthful alternative to mainstream, chemical-laden deodorants.
- Lather up with all-purpose dr. bronner’s hemp peppermint pure castile liquid soap, a blend of organic coconut, olive, jojoba, hemp, and peppermint oils. It cleans effectively without overdrying your skin.
- It’s a medicine cabinet in a bottle. Humphreys witch hazel astringent is an all-natural remedy that has been used to gently cleanse and soothe even the most sensitive skin since 1854. It removes dirt, oil, and makeup, tones without overdrying, soothes minor irritations after shaving, and reduces the appearance of enlarged pores.
- Stop dry, flaky, itchy scalp with jason natural tea tree scalp normalizing shampoo, which eliminates excessive dead cells and dandruff, while fortifying hair follicles. Tea tree oil helps keep hair cleaner and shinier longer.
- Nature’s first-aid kit, lily of the desert aloe very gelly contains 99 percent certified organic ingredients and comes to the rescue for sunburn, minor cuts and burns, bites, chaffing, cold sores, rashes, and skin irritations. Try it as a moisturizer for sensitive skin.
- Add body and strength to hair with mill creek botanicals biotene h-24 shampoo, fortified with biotin, keratin protein, nucleic acids, and cysteine to nourish the hair and scalp.
- Dry up acne, rinse away blackheads, and help shrink enlarged pores with queen helene original mint julep masque. No skin problems? It also relaxes tired muscles and eases tension lines on the face and neck.
- Remove plaque, control tartar buildup, and whiten your teeth every time you brush with tom’s of maine natural antiplaque tartar control plus whitening toothpaste in pepperminT. Xylitol, zinc citrate, and silica clean and whiten teeth, removing stains without harsh abrasion that can damage enamel.
Top 10 Classics
- It’s a lipstick, a moisturizer, and a sunscreen in one. alba botanica terra tints naturally tinted lip balm (six colors) provides color derived from natural minerals, hydration from coconut and olive oils, chemical-free sun protection with SPF 8 from zinc oxide, and organic peppermint for a refreshing taste.
- Nourish your hair with aubrey organics gpb glycogen protein balancing shampoo. Soy and milk protein strengthen hair, while aloe and shea butter soften and replenish moisture. Herbal oils smooth hair fiber and infuse it with vitamins to leave hair healthy and lustrous.
- Use one ampule of dr. hauschka sensitive rhythmic conditioner each night to calm inflammation, strengthen connective tissue, and promote circulation in congested capillaries, reducing redness. It’s ideal for chemical sensitivity, couperose, rosacea, and sunburn.
- Soothe and protect sensitive skin conditions, including rosacea, with dr. hauschka toned day cream, which is tinted warm beige with natural mineral pigments to provide a smooth, translucent finish. Plant oils moisturize and protect.
- Lighten skin tone and fade age spots with earth science ginsium-c skin lightening Crème, which works with the help of licorice root, bearberry, lemon and cucumber extracts, vitamin C, and titanium dioxide.
- Get healthy teeth and gums with eco-dent dailycare toothpowder in original mint. Naturally effervescent baking soda and sea salt gently remove plaque and remineralize tooth enamel. Myrrh extract soothes gums and the original mint flavor wakes up your mouth. It’s concentrated, so a two-ounce bottle provides up to 200 brushings.
- Exfoliate your body and invigorate your senses with Giovanni Cosmetics Cool Mint Lemonade Salt Scrub. Organic sea salt and crushed mint leaves remove impurities and stimulate circulation, while safflower seed oil and essential oils of peppermint and spearmint moisturize the new skin underneath.
- Keep your skin youthfully firm, soft and supple with lamas beauty chinese herb body lotion. Age-old Chinese herbs include soy (providing moisture-loss protection) and green tea (neutralizing free radicals). Its silky feeling lasts all day.
- Restore up to 40 percent of your lips’ volume lost due to normal aging with mychelle dermaceuticals lip plumping treatment (in Refreshing Mint or Luscious Piña Colada). Plant-based polypeptides (a chain of amino acids joined by a protein bond) stimulate collagen and hyaluronic acid to achieve more voluptuous lips over the course of a 29-day treatment.
- Moisturize while you cleanse with nature’s gate hemp velvet moisture body wash. Dry skin becomes dewy soft and supple from hemp seed oil, shea butter, sweet almond oil, apricot kernel oil, soybean oil, sodium hyaluronate, vegetable glycerin and vitamin E. A spicy, romantic scent is released in the luxurious lather.
Beauty Editor’s Top 10 Favorites
Beauty editor Sherrie Strausfogel has selected the following products as her all-time favorites—and awarded them with a Best of Beauty award.
Beauty editor SHERRIE STRAUSFOGEL is the author of Hawaii’s Spa Experience: Rejuvenating Secrets of the Islands (the first book to feature aromatherapy in its pages). Writing about beauty, spas, health, cuisine, and travel, her work has appeared in more than 100 magazines, newspapers, guidebooks, and Web sites, such as Elite Traveler, Gourmet, Health, Los Angeles Times, Men’s Fitness, Shape, Spa, USA Today, and Westways. Based in Honolulu, she is a world traveler and spa devotee who has traveled to more than 50 countries and visited many of the leading spas in the U.S., Mexico, Europe, and Asia.