Review: Shea Terra Skincare

Skincare

Conflict Free + Naturally Effective

Literature Review

Shea Terra organics began as a childhood promise to alleviate poverty by creating sustainable economic opportunities.  Shea Terra Founder: Tammie Umbel, a self-taught businesswoman built a 1.7 million dollar beauty business. She was saddened by images of impoverished children living in difficult conditions so she vowed that one day she would create jobs for these communities so they can provide for themselves. Shea Terra is the result of this promise and today creates economic opportunities for dozen of communities and thousands of individuals across Africa. Tammie turned her knowledge of indigenous beauty secrets and love of herbal remedies for the answer to naturally effective skincare.  She travels around the world finding raw materials for her products and sources to bottle for use. Shea Terra is a high quality, affordable brand that supports local communities and the environment. This brand is truly an inspiring entrepreneurial journey. There’s a reason the Rose Hips Black Soap Face Wash was featured in Forbes, the reddit waves are booming, and the beloved Sarah Jessica Parker is a believer: Shea Terra products are the truth.

Progress Notes

Shea Terra has a reputation for delivering results with time-tested ingredients backed by thousands of years of traditional usage and modern science. All Shea Terra products are free of animal testing, parabens, SLS, soy, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, thickeners, mineral oil, nanos, and synthetic colors. Ingredients in the line include raw materials such as Baobab, Shea Butter, Berbere Fig, Yangu, Black Seed, Argan, Rose Hips, Blue Lotus, Sidr, Tamanu, Shaafe Wood, Oontanga, and Lote Fruit just to name a few. Although Shea Terra has been around since 2000, the ingredients used date back to the beginning of time. Using these products is a journey of rediscovering the natural elements that have beautified and healed humans since the first walk on earth. Jump in for the review of a few of their facial oils + beauty water. 

 

Much good skin soft skincare GIF

PREP

Boswellia Beauty Water

Key Ingredients: 100% Pure, distilled Boswellia water

I make sure to take some time to see how each product interacts with my skin prior to write up. I prepped the face with Shea Terra’s beauty water to allow the treatment properties of the oils to work its way into the skin. Boswellia Beauty Water is the water created from distilling frankincense. This powerful water provides skin with a myriad of benefits. It helps to reduce overproduction of oil while also providing skin softening properties for all skin types. Boswellia Beauty Water can be used as a daily toner. It could also reduce blemishes and calm angry skin. There is a light earthy scent to the product, but nothing that lingers on your face. The pressure of the aerator pump releases the product in stout sprays, so you will need at minimum 2. The formula allows a few minutes of staying power of the water and does not dry easily. 

Treat

Mongongo Cold Pressed Beauty Oil

Key Ingredients: 100% Pure, Cold Pressed Mongongo Oil

Mongongo Beauty Oil has been used by the indigenous peoples of southern Africa to help protect and regenerate their skin against the harsh desert conditions for thousands of years. High in vitamin E, Mongongo Beauty Oil helps to repair damaged and aging skin. Shea Terra indicates that Mongongo Beauty Oil is perfect under makeup and helps improve strength and condition of hair.  After a few weeks of use, I would determine this product best used for hair and dehydrated areas of your skin: elbows, knees, heels. as the Mongongo oil is quite thick. If you’re on the east coast, I would recommend this as a facial oil only for the harsh and bitter winters. This is a pure oil, so not only does a little go a long way, but you are able to truly get the benefit as intended. 

Egyptian Pomegranate Cold Pressed Oil

Key Ingredients: 100% pure, cold pressed pomegranate seed oil 

This is a nutritive, light Egyptian Pomegranate Seed Oil. Rich in omega-5, a unique fatty acid, as well as anti-oxidants and phytosterols, Egyptian Pomegranate Seed Oil helps protect skin against free radical scavengers as well as helping decrease skin damage and the appearance of wrinkles. Pomegranate is an amazing topical treatment, especially for combination skin like mine. The anti inflammatory properties of pomegranate facilitate quick healing, skin restoration, and combats hyper-pigmentation and acne development. This product is rich in antioxidants which helps for collagen production and getting you to the glow. I used this oil in a face mask with yoghurt and applied all over my face and neck for 20-25 minutes and rinse after. The results were total face rejuvenation and brightening effects. Interestingly enough, the oil does not have a pomegranate scent, but does retain it’s pink/purple hue. Out of all three of the oils, the pomegranate was the lightest and layered well with my other skincare products. 

Tamanu Cold Pressed Beauty Oil

Key Ingredients: 100% Pure, Cold Pressed Tamanu Oil

Tamanu is a powerful beauty oil that will transform your skin. It’s an anti-aging, skin regeneration oil extracted from Tamanu nuts in the Vohibola Forest. This product would be good for if you’re looking to introduce a facial oil into your routine that duals as an anti-aging product. It has a greenish hue and can be used directly on the skin or mixed within formulations, BUT- this oil is a bit tacky, so test it out prior to mixing with any other base products. It stores well under any condition but extreme heat will lessen the shelf life. This pure oil is a wonder remedy, as it helps with many different skin problems and conditions. If you maintain an anti-aging treatment this would be a good layer for night-time routines. The oil has a mild nut and woodsy scent. This oil can also help relieve from skin bites and redness on the skin. 

Debrief

Unboxing Experience: You should know by now that I’m pretty critical of packaging. It’s because first impressions set the tone for product application, prior to use and measure of effectiveness. The link between visual aesthetics and branding is super important for identification of the brand and where it fits on my top shelf. There needs to be some form of emotional connection to the product to ensure it stays a priority. For me it’s about a fostered sense of brand loyalty. That being said, I’ve got to take points off for this unboxing experience. It’s tough because the Shea Terra formulas are legit, but they never seem to be my first reach during am/pm routine. Generally, I’ll keep 1-2 hydration mists, oils, and other treatments around and I found myself neglecting this water/oil. With such an inspiring story of success and products that are naturally sourced, I would expect this brand to have a stronger visual identity and community and I’m not sure what the aesthetic is. Strong powerful products, need a strong and clear theme and visual message, what is my buy in? I really believe these products should be more well known and what drives the word-of-mouth phenomenon is when you are able to reach for products and use it consistently. We are social beings, so I would love to se Shea Terra really embrace a new approach to connect it’s users together to a specific home base. 

Effectiveness: I start evaluating products from the moment it gets to my house till about 14-21 days of use.  Each of the oils blended easily and did not feel overly sticky or heavy. They were able settle into my skin without suffocating it or feeling as if it was just laying on top of it. All of the Shea Terra products are made from raw ingredients imported from Southern Africa. If you’re just starting your journey on beauty oils, it’s important to note that there is a beauty in understanding each role and targeting your desired result. It takes a bit of work, trial and error, but the pay off for the glow is worth it. When targeting specific oils, keep in mind the importance of cold pressed oils to give you the pure results you’re looking for. Shea Terra is a strong brand to help you start that process. When your oils are diluted you will yield different effects from use. I am a strong advocate of the body healing itself in addition to products sourced from the earth to assist in healing. These oils help to provide speedy recoverey of skin with little to no scarring. 

Cost To Use Ratio: Solid. Each 2 ounce bottle of oil has a median ticket of $24 and considering the quality of the product that is a pretty affordable tag for a non-synthetic imported product. It would be nice if there was some form of oil sampler pallet one could purchase to gauge their liking of the product without having to commit to a full size!

Feel free to share the love via the links below to someone who could also use a few beauty oil ideas. You can like this post below via heart-moji and be sure to share this with a friend. Follow-up in one week!

Best, Dr. Dyce

+all photos taken by yourweeklyfollowup

+Many thanks to Shea Terra Organics for their support in this blog. This is not a sponsored post + products were provided for editorial consideration. All opinions and thoughts about the businesses featured are my own. I stay true to your weekly followup + my aesthetic. 

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7 Minute Self-Care

Skincare

My aunt and I have this bond over skin care. In fact I should probably blame her for this lifelong hobby/obsession. At 9 I knew the power of Dr. Bronner’s Castile soap and why form of clays, hot springs, natural foods, + herbs trumped anything out of the local Duane Reed.  She also taught me the power of a damn good home facial. 

Step 1: cleanse (2mins)

Good Medicine ASHES / reincarnation cleansing grains

Key Ingredients: juniper, powdered pearls, lily of the valley

This is a multi use product. I will use this as a cleanser and exfoliate, but you could easily mask with this or even mix it in with your shampoo. The ashes are combined with oils, and Vitamin C is activated by adding water to the dry powder.

**when you steam your face you open up your pores and if you don’t cleanse first, makeup, sweat, dirt, debris, etc. is more likely to get into your pores causing clogged pores which can also lead to possible breakouts.

Step 2: steam (3mins)

Marigold Glow Beauty Steam

Key Ingredients: dried chamomile, rose, lavender, calendula, comfrey, rosemary

Fabulous. Organic botanical blend that detoxes and renews the skin by opening up and decongesting your pores. I boiled water to get s good steam and let it sit for a minute or two. Added the floral detox and hovered over the bowl for a few minutes. My skin felt hydrated and soft after use. This would be great for a travel skin detox, by throwing some in a ziplock bag and pouring into hot water via your hotel room.

Step 3: tone (1 min)

Basil Yarrow Mist

Key Ingredients: rose water, yarrow extract, blue chamomile oil, basil + ylang yang essential oils.

This is a multiuse spray for face, body, and hair. It’s a great complementary product that offers a unique scent if Basil and Ylang Ylang. I keep this spray in my fridge for quick pick-me-ups like today to freshen and hydrate in the daytime.

Step 4: nourish (1min)

Clary Sage Beauty Drops

Key Ingredients:  Raw, Organic, Unrefined Argania Spinosa Extract, Organic Clary Sage

This was my first introduction to using facial oil at night so skin owl holds a very near and dear place in my heart. When I first started using this oil, my skin was extremely thirsty and lackluster. A dissertation will do that to you. This is a really solid and intensive facial oil for someone who is trying to leverage over into the natural skincare world but doesn’t know where to start. Definitely add this oil to your nighttime routine; It’s a bit to concentrated for me for daytime use. The oil sooths and plumps your skin while sleeping through the night. It’s a luxe item that really allows you to see the magic even after one use. I woke up to a brightened complexion and as time went on the damage to my face from lack of sleep diminished. This is an oil that continues to be a contender as I move through different brands.

You can grab all of these products on their respective sites or try more like them via GoodBeing. Another awesome vehicle if you want to experience new products with low commitment.

+all photos taken by yourweeklyfollowup

+Many thanks to GoodBeing & Skin Owl for their support in this blog. This is not a sponsored post + products were provided for editorial consideration. All opinions and thoughts about the businesses featured are my own. I stay true to your weekly followup + my aesthetic.

Best, Dr. Dyce

PLANT; Williamsburg, Brooklyn

Skincare

Listen.

After much trial and error, there are two things that have really transformed my skincare game: understanding how to select products based on my skin’s PH + the introduction of oils.

The best defense against oily skin is an offense of face oils.

I will admit I used to love the stripped, squeaky clean feeling of harsh facial products. It’s like when you’re heavy duty cleaning and you smell bleach, you KNOW that area is clean. The same went for my skincare products. Astringents went hand in hand because obviously “feeling the burn” meant I adequately cleansed my skin. I can admit that the tightness of “oil free” moisturizer is what I craved. It was a real cognitive bind for me because

I kept asking myself: exactly how do you clean oil with oil?

 

OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network confused clueless no idea iyanla GIF

You see, we’re sold this bill that oily skin = acne + acne = impurity; therefore you become obsessed with items that “blast” or “deep clean” + think that you need to have certain drying products to “dry out” the impurity, like it’s a face detox.

As I learned more about the use of facial oil, I understood that the dryness was only causing my face to create MORE oil on my face causing an imbalance of oil and skin texture among other crazy things. Treating oily skin with oil— now it made sense! Using an oil to treat the skin would help keep things consistent.

Insert: PLANT; my new evening bae

LITERATURE REVIEW

PLANT is a Williamsburg, Brooklyn, based apothecary that hosts a variety of organic, unisex, and plant based skincare products. Their formulas follow the classic principles of aroma therapy and herbalism to produce a damn good face oil.

Their work is also in partnership with Brooklyn United, which is a nonprofit organization that helps to provide work for non-abled adults who help with the production and distribution of their product. Plant is here for the community, the earth, and serving elixirs so we can have a glorious canvas each day.

 biggups to my mum for her hand modeling assistance.

biggups to my mum for her hand modeling assistance.

PROGRESS NOTES

Superficial comes in two different forms: normal/dry/combination/mature skin and oily/acne prone skin types. This is a protective serum for deep moisturization + is strongly competing to replace my current nightly face oil by Skin Owl. Shoutout to PLANT for creating a product with restorative properties loaded with vitamins & those good fatty omega acids.

 Key Ingredients:

Juniper + Geranium Oil, White Tea Seed Oil, Sea Buckthorn Oil (hop this wave), Apricot Oil, Avocado Oil

Ya’ll. This serum is everything.

 

Saturday Night Live dance happy snl excited GIF

The aroma therapy component is what really makes this a luxe experience. The white tea seed and juniper oils comes through as the top notes, there’s the apricot and hazelnut oil at the mid and the geranium holds the base for the anchor and rich color component. This is everything. I actually just reapplied a few drops while writing this to engage once more; It’s that good. It fits the self-care bill because it forces you to slow down and thoroughly experience the product working its magic.

DEBRIEF

I like the diversity of the company + their integrity. The concept of the company is natural and it’s suitable for different complexions + skin types. PLANT is an inclusive brand and I can support their identity. Unboxing Experience: straight forward packaging with clever cheeky branding – Pantone game strong. From start to finish, this feels like a crafted experience. Cost to Use Ratio: strong. If you’re looking for a facial oil that’s going to provide you results but not break the bank I think that this is a solid investment. Each application on damp skin is about 5 drops for effective use. If you’re using it for a night time treatment as I do, the one ounce bottle is going to last you a long time. To compare: Sunday Riley’s medicated UFO oil comes in about the same size (1.18 oz) for $80 and PLANT provides their serum for $56; a bit more than my current night time oil, but I can feel the difference in the oil quality- this is a treatment and the price tag is appropriate. If you’re someone like me and already using an active evening treatment I believe that this serum will rank up on your list. If I was still living in my great state of New Jersey, I could definitely see using this as a daytime moisturizer in the brutal cold mornings.

Head over to the PLANT website and check out their rad line. Let me know if you decide on anything by commenting down below! I’m gonna try real hard to go to sleep now and not massage another few drops on this face. 😩  a major #olfactiondistraction

Best, Dr. Dyce

+all photos taken by yourweeklyfollowup

+Many thanks to PLANT Apothecary for their support in this blog. This is not a sponsored post + products were provided for editorial consideration. All opinions and thoughts about the businesses featured are my own. I stay true to your weekly followup + my aesthetic.