Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Trip to Georgetown Part 1: LUSH Cosmetics

Continuing Saga of the Search for Better Beauty Products...
Written by Katy Kincade
Photos by Andy Visoso

As part of our investigation of more sustainable cosmetic options, Andy and I took a trip to Georgetown to visit the LUSH cosmetics store on M Street.  LUSH is a brand that was started in England by a couple of people who are passionate about crafting fresh, handmade cosmetics that are not tested on animals.  LUSH products are 100% vegetarian, 84% vegan, and 60% preservative-free.  LUSH is  especially known for their bath products, but they have a full range of cosmetics as well, including a new line of vegan cosmetics with bright, bold colors.  

The store is a lot of fun to browse in.  There are sections  that look like a bakery or candy store and another that looks like a salad bar with fresh facial concoctions in serving  bowls over crushed ice.  The very knowledgeable staff is on hand to make recommendations and to help you sample various products.  The company also tries to include organic and fair trade ingredients.  Their products are not all-natural, or organic.  Their principal focus is on making animal-friendly products, but a more sustainable ethos is evident throughout.  There is less packaging, and more biodegradable packaging.  The plastic tubs that some of the products come in can be returned in batches of 5 for a free facial mask.  They also use some nifty scarves made from recycled bottles for gift wrapping.   

I bought some hair moisturizer for curly hair (Revive and Balance Hair Moisturizer:  $22.95 for a 3.5oz pot) and was given a sample tub of their shampoo for curly hair (Curly Wurly) as well.  The store manager showed me how to massage the shampoo into my palm with water to make it lather up.  At home I was not able to get it to lather up as much the shampoo I am used to .  The shampoo had bits of coconut in it, which was interesting (scalp scrub?).  These are big enough to wash out, but I wondered if they would get caught in the drain trap. I'll do a detailed review of the hair moisturizer in my next post and analyze its ingredient list in-depth, as I did for Moroccan Oil.   In general, I did not love the products'  fragrances as much as those from Herban Lifestyle,  and the scent of all the products seemed to compete in the store in a way that was unpleasant for  me.  Andy got a velvety-soft moisturizer with a lovely scent (Vanishing Cream $42.95) and toner (Breath of Fresh Air Toner $9.95). 

LUSH has locations in Georgetown (3066 M St., NW), the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City (1100 South Hayes St., in Arlington, VA), and Tysons (1961 Chain Bridge Rd.,  McLean, VA) Do stop in for a really great shopping experience and check out their many pre-wrapped samplers, which would make great gifts.

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