Skin Care

By Charu Suri

You globetrotter. Packing your suitcase each week and jetsetting from airport to airport. Your skin has probably seen more time zones than your blackberry, so consider treating it to some delicious secrets from around the world. We bring you some of the best products from the five habitable continents. And unless they discover a fjord rich in vitamins, Antarctica is off the skincare map…at least for now.

Europe

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Skyn Iceland’s Detox Kit is a tough stress fighter. The quartet of products in this portable and elegant purse works hard to detox your skin in a mere five days. It is the first brand to tap into the untainted regions of Iceland, and has a proprietary Biospheric Complex that delivers Iceland’s natural resources of water, earth and air to your largest organ. The Glacial Wash, Arctic Face Mist, Oxygen Infusion Night Cream and ANTIDOTE Quenching Daily Lotion is a must have for every traveler and especially those partial to pure, flawless skin. Or should I say, skyn?

Visit www.skynICELAND.com, Henri Bendel, select Sephora stores and b-glowing.com (check out this month’s b-glowing giveaway, too).

South America

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OK, fine, so it’s Central America. But Ojon Tawaka Ancient Rejuvenating Cleanser is one special bottle, we couldn’t not mention it in this story. This Cleanser can be used both for the hair and the face, so it’s a very convenient multi-tasker (not unlike the new Apple iPhone). The 98% sulfate-free cleansing treatment left my hair and skin thoroughly comfortable, that the state of being au naturel sounded appealing! The moisturizing and anti-oxidant characteristic of the savage cacao in the cleanser has enough anti-oxidant power that it’s comparable to 125 lbs of blueberries. Now it’s a pity you can’t have it with your breakfast cereal…

The Tawaka Ancient Tribal Conditioner is reviewed in our Haircare section. The Rejuvenating Cream is also great for hair repair and increasing skin firmness and elasticity. Visit www.ojon.com to learn more about this rich trio.

Australia

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Imagine hundreds of bunches of roses in a jar. That’s what the Australian skincare line, Gorgeous, offers. Pure rose oil is extracted from these bunches of roses and bottled. Dee Light, founder and co-owner of Gorgeous aims to bring the rarest and purest natural essential oils to her products. The Rose Cream retails for $160 and is a double-blended cream that uses more than thirty bunches of real roses to make enough rose oil for each jar. The cream softens and plumps skin while providing essential hydration. Now, as though you didn’t have enough reasons to visit Down Under. To see the other products in the line, visit www.alchemistsapprentice.com

Africa

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The fragrant and heavenly Roger & Gallet line has a Vanilla Sap range that will hydrate your skin and make you smell better than an arboretum. Vanilla Sap is the milky fluid that comes from orchids with white flowers, and these products contain the sap from flowers found on the island of Madagascar.

Enriched with aloe vera, this line has coconut shell fibers, jojoba oil, glycerin and mineral oil in various lotions and gels. We highly recommend the Gentle Nature Moisturizing Soothing Body Cream with Vanilla Sap and the Moisturizing Shower Cream. Make sure you get yours before stores run out!

Available at Clydes Chemist (NY), New London Pharmacy (NY) and www.BeautyExclusive.com

Asia (By B. Kim Taylor)

Banish winter doldrums with the scents of India’s lush gardens in the new year. The refreshing, energy-boosting properties of Kama Ayurveda’s Les Jardins d’Inde will usher in the aromas of spring during winter’s cold, short days. This new ayurvedic-based line is all natural and paraben free, for healthy pleasure.

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This line is designed to awaken the senses with pure essential oils. Initially used and lauded across the globe in places such as the Middle East, Asia and Australia, it landed on our shores recently with fanfare. Some of the stars in the Les Jardins d’Inde galaxy include Cypress Orange Hair Cleanser, Body Cleanser, Body Moisturizer and Hair Conditioner.

Another Les Jardins product of note is Pure Rosewater, which is crafted in the town of Kannauj in India. Kannauj is a world-renowned center for perfume and rosewater due to its white clay soil, which produces one of the most fragrant roses in the world. This pure, beautiful scent is captured by using an ancient technique of steam water distillation.

Les Jardins also offers the uplifting aroma of orange, lemon and spices to you with its line of distinctive candles. The organically grown plants and herbs included in this natural line are collected by India’s tribal communities from natural habitats. Since these products are Ayurvedic-based, they’re luxurious remedies for physical, mental and spiritual healing, and utilize original, time-tested, balanced prescriptions.

Products are available at www.alcanz.com, and more information about Kama Ayurveda is available at www.kamaayurveda.com. If you can’t get to the gardens of India in the near future, then bring them to you!

North America

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Skincare companies come and go. But Cetaphil, I believe, will live forever. A quintessentially American company with some of the finest and gentlest cleansers available on the market, Cetaphil is my choice pick from all the North American products I’ve tested. Why? Practically everyone with every skin type loves this cleanser. There are no breakouts, no residue, nothing but pure, clean skin. Without stripping the skin of its natural pH balance, this cleanser offers the best bang for your buck. Isn’t that what the promised land was supposed to offer, anyway? www.cetaphil.com

Originally published February 2007
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