Hello Loves! I have a slightly different type of review for you today - Lemongrass Spa Nail Balm. I don't usually review balms, creams or oils, but I decided to accept this one for review for one reason and one reason only. I was desperate! lol
If you are a regular reader of my little blog here, you know that I struggle with the condition of my hands. I swatch A LOT of gel polish. Some weeks I might swatch over two dozen gels over the course of two days. Add nail school on top of the swatching, and you have the recipe for disaster. My nails are in really bad shape (don't judge) and my skin was awful. How awful? Well, I've always been very open about the fact that I edit my photos to remove hangnails and imperfections in my skin that might distract from my swatches and nail art. I never alter the polish itself, but I do clean up my skin. It had gotten to the point that I was spending about 8 hours a week just editing photos. Crazy, right? Needless to say, I don't have time for all that. I needed help. Major help. And since my husband refuses to learn photoshop and edit my swatches for me, I had to go a different route. ;)
Lemongrass Spa is a direct sales company that offers all natural and organic skin care items. I won't go into all the company details, but you can check it out here if you're interested. Chinwe is a Lemongrass Spa rep, and when she contacted me about reviewing this balm, I had my doubts. I'm not going to lie, I'm not really into the whole organic movement. Organic is nice and all, but I don't specifically shop for organic products. It's not that I doubt them because they are organic. I just doubt everything at this point. I have tried so many oils, lotions and balms with little to no results over the years. Photoshop has been the only product that never lets me down. But, as I said, I was desperate. So I accepted the review.
Now that you know the back story, what exactly is Lemongrass Spa Nail Balm? If the label in the photo above isn't clear, the label defines it as a "Deep Treatment for brittle nails and tender cuticles." Yep, that describes my nails. Or did a few weeks ago. The label continues with the following instructions: "Apply twice daily, massaging until absorbed. Heals cuticles and softens dry nails in just a few treatments. Use at bedtime for excellent results as it will absorb while you sleep." That sounded easy enough. But what is it? The other side of the label shares a little more. "Handmade in Colorado with the following ingredients: Organic olive oil, organic apricot kernel oil, organic avocado oil, organic beeswax, horsetail oil, vitamin E oil and organic grapefruit seed extract. 90% organic, 100% all-natural." Yep, so that's what the company has to say about it. Ready to hear what I have to say?
It comes in a 2 ounce pot, which is a ton of product. While it is technically a balm, it's more like a cuticle oil in solid form. When you touch it, the heat from your fingers transforms it to an oil that is easily applied to and absorbed by your skin. You can see the oil (balm) on my fingertip in this shot. All I did was gently touch the balm with my finger. That small amount is enough for three nails!
Here's a shot in the pot. As you can see, I've barely made a dent in it and I've been using it for three weeks now. I should note that I have been using it on my hands - not just my cuticles and nails. So the indention is from my knuckle...I hate getting products under my nails. lol
Now is probably a great time to mention that none of the photos in this post have been retouched. I only cropped them and added my watermark. You can clearly see where I over-thinned my nails when I first started playing with acrylic at school. And you can see where I stopped that craziness and the damage is growing out. You can also see that my cuticles are not perfect, but they're a thousand times better than they were! If I were to retouch this photo, it would take me less than 5 minutes including cropping and watermarking. That's a huge improvement over the 20 minutes I was spending on each and every photo.
Here's a full shot of my naked nails immediately after applying the Nail Balm. Again this photo is completely untouched other than cropping and watermark.
And this photo is after I massaged it in and waited about 10 minutes for it to absorb a little. I admit, it is very oily at first, but it absorbs quickly and the greasy feel goes away. You can see in the photo below that I do still have some rough spots, but they aren't horrible like they were. By the way, showing you my untouched nails is a big deal for me. Sheesh...I would rather show my fat butt in a swimsuit than show you macro shots of my hands without photoshopping them. But look! They really aren't that bad! I have a few rough spots still, but considering what I put my hands through, they look fantastic!
Ok, so I'm sold on this product. The Lemongrass Spa Nail Balm has completely transformed my hands and reduced the amount of time it takes for me to blog. You may have noticed I've been doing some pretty large collections lately. Those would have taken me a week to edit in my spare time (no, I really don't have spare time between school and my family...so "spare time" is code for that time I would usually spend sleeping). Now I'm knocking collections out from swatching to editing in a day! Whoo Hoo!
Oh, I forgot to mention that it is unscented. That's a huge plus for me too. I can't stand when my cuticle treatments clash with my perfume. ;) If you are looking for a great treatment for beaten cuticles, you can pick up a jar from Chinwe's website here.
Finally, after falling in love with the Nail Balm, I spent some time checking out the other skin care items available from Lemongrass Spa. That's when I ran across something that absolutely warmed my heart! Lemongrass Spa has an ongoing campaign called Freedom Feet.
What is Freedom Feet? You can purchase a Freedom Feet Kit and Lemongrass Spa will send it to a service member overseas! The kit includes a 4 oz foot soak, 4 oz foot scrub, and 4 oz foot cream inside a red and white gift box. You know walking in combat boots day in and day out is hard on a gal's feet, and every woman deserves a little pampering. Especially those women who are fighting for our freedom. I have purchased a kit and hope it makes the day a little brighter for one of our brave military women. :)
Note: If you decide to follow my lead and donate a Freedom Feet Kit, the cart will ask for your shipping information at checkout. The store system doesn't recognize that the kit is a donation, so it just goes through the motions. The kit will be flagged and shipped to a service member and not show up on your door step. If you want a kit for yourself or a service member at home, you can purchase one of the domestic kits and have it shipped to a specific person.
Be sure to follow Chinwe's Lemongrass Spa page on facebook for special offers on all natural and organic products! If the rest of the line is anything like the Nail Balm, you won't be disappointed. :)
*The Nail Balm featured in this post was provided by Lemongrass Spa Rep Chinwe Idigo for my honest review. All links are courtesy links and do not benefit ManicTalons.com.