Skin Care

By Betsy Aaron

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The fruits of fall are exciting when they appear in late summer farmers markets but when you realize that you will have eaten your weight in apples and pears by spring, the abundance of citrus come late fall adds a welcome zest that lasts through winter. Essential oils of citrus like neroli, bergamot, tangerine and even the more mundane lemon and lime are not only fragrant but also possess powerful aromatherapy properties that range from sedative (neroli,) to uplifting (bergamot,) and provide effective remedies for the skin.

For dry skin, nothing nourishes and replenishes like orange flower oil, also known as neroli. Orange Flower Water, Orange Flower Facial Wash and Orange Flower Facial Oil from Neal’s Yard Remedies are three simple steps you can take daily to feed and hydrate your parched face. They all use organic neroli with high levels of antioxidants to replenish and protect the skin. These products are part of an organic collection that includes day and nighttime moisturizers as well as a weekly treatment so you can maintain radiance 24/7. I always follow my nose and neroli is a scent I want to live with. Aromatherapy begins when you open the bottle and find yourself transported to someplace that must be Mediterranean. Could there be a better way to start and end each day? Use these products daily and you are good to glow.


I love to come clean with an exfoliant that pampers rather than sandpapers and Patyka’s Radiant Exfoliating Mask is not just a gentle scrub, it’s also an emollient mask. Besides being two high performance products in one, it’s amazingly packaged and the instructions are actually useful. I learned to strengthen my neck skin – which is in need – by massaging downward using the back of my hand. The product dispenses when you press on a seal inside the jar so you don’t introduce bacteria into the product itself. The innovative outer package unfolds to reveal a list of certified organic ingredients that includes citrus acids and information that I found fascinating. In addition to being smartly packaged and delightful to use, this product left my face feeling cleansed, hydrated and looking radiant and smooth.


Tangerine & Calendula Healing Light Night Cream from Kimberly Sayer of London is a lightweight, nocturnal potion that features tangerine oil to detoxify the lymph system, soothe skin and enhance sleep. It also includes calendula, Hawaiian sea algae and neroli oil to balance, soften and rejuvenate. Though this cream is suitable for peeps with oily skin, I found it soothing for my sensitive skin and will use it on nights when the seasonal biosphere of my apartment is not overly arid.

Available: and Whole Food Markets

Rejuvenating Eye Cream from Amala is light, non-greasy, easily absorbed, et voila—darkness disappears and smoothness reigns. Natural ingredients feature peptide-packed cocoa bean, Vitamin C-rich acai, brightening licorice root and antioxidant lemon and bergamot oils. This product is so effective that you need to use very little for maximum result. Extra points for minimal packaging that makes the most of recycled paper.

Available: and ABC Home, New York

Hands down, the most brilliantly packaged product I sampled was the Hands Bergamot gift set from Space NK. Hand Lotion Bergamot and Hand Wash Bergamot come in a boxed set, the cover of which illustrates the lines of the palm. Instructions on how to read one’s palm are enclosed. But it’s what’s inside that counts: these products gently cleanse, thoroughly moisturize and the scent is revelatory– much greener than the bergamot I associate with Earl Grey tea. My hands felt like they’d had a revitalizing spa treatment. Great for gifting thyself.


Ginger Lime Hand & Nail Cream from Primavera is energizing and deeply hydrating without feeling greasy. I look forward to using this product all winter to keep my nails and cuticles from shredding like dried coconut. The essential lime oil is mildly astringent and antiseptic with an uplifting scent. Additional ingredients include organic ginger essential oil and organic jojoba oil. The minimally packaged product fits nicely into a cosmetic bag so you can use it to pamper your paws all the livelong day.


For skin with that certain zest, use products that are so citrus.

Originally published December 2011



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