written by Raulla S. Mitchell
ONE OF THE MOST OFTEN ASKED QUESTIONS: What are the differences between a lotion, creme and body butter? And most importantly, what’s best for my skin?
There’s no better time to take a deeper individual look at what YOUR skin needs as our seasons transition.
You’ve probably heard the chat about “seasonal skincare”? It’s been in the beauty industry news everywhere we turn. It should be. Mother nature changes, and as she does, so does our skin.
I’ve always talked about understanding the essential nature of seasonal skincare needs, and specifically, learning how to listen to what our skin wants and needs as the seasons change. If you live in the midwest with four seasons, the ideal treatments to cleanse, moisturize, protect and heal our skin are not the same year round.
So Red Note Botanica, the fresh natural luxury skincare line for the bath that I formulated, based on my training, knowledge and experience as an holistic healthcare practitioner, a certified aromatherapist and herbalist is founded first and foremost as a healthy product line designed to rejuvenate and bring out the best in your skin, and secondly to delight and celebrate your beautiful playful spirit with uniquely fresh fragrances all year round. It’s founded on seasonal skincare from the start, and always will be.
Our skin, as the largest organ of our body, absorbs at least 65-70% of what we apply to it topically. That explains why patches and dermatological creams, ointments, serums, etc. are very effective at healing and protecting troubled skin, and even ceasing addictions like smoking.
With that in mind, it’s essential to formulate and use skincare products which have vitamin and nutrient rich oils, butters, and other healthy ingredients that will treat our skin gently with effective results. Skincare that keeps its promises is a must.
It is my personal feeling that all skin is sensitive, and should be treated as such. Treating your skin as anything less is not something I advocate. Even if you are blessed with great skin now, it’s essential to protect it to ensure that it retains its natural beauty for years to come.
On that note, let’s chat about some of the things your skin might be trying to tell you as we head into colder weather temps, dry air, indoor heating, and other stuff that can dry out our skin, leading to potential irritation, inflammation, eczema, and less than healthy skin from which we absolutely do not need to suffer if we treat our skin gently on a regular basis – hey it’s fun, pampering, and the results couldn’t be better, so why not? Let’s go!…
It can seem a bit like a dark scary forest out there when you’re out on your own, exploring so many moisturizing options.
- What does each one do that makes it different from the others?
- Will they keep their promises?
- How do I use them?
- How often?
- When is it best to apply my moisturizer?
- When will I see or feel a difference?
These are some of your most popular questions that we hear throughout the year. No worries, we love to hear from you, with ANY question you may have, and we want to address your concerns.
The simple answer is that in natural skincare, lotions generally have the highest ratio of water to oils and butters. Cremes have a higher ratio of oils and butters to water than lotions. They are thicker, often whipped and smooth in texture, but do not pour the way lotions do. Body butters have the highest ratio of oils and butters to water, and are quite thick “like butter” in consistency. So, lightest to thickest and most emollient goes in this direction: lotions to cremes to body butters.
Now, most skins will benefit visibly and tangibly by the regular topical application of moisturizers which are formulated to nourish, heal, and protect your skin. Lotions are fabulous as all over moisturizers. Cremes and body butters may be used all over to treat dry, mature, thirstiest skin, or skin during the cold dry months of the winter.
Sometimes the best treatment is a mix. Lotions for all over, and a creme or body butter for dry hands, feet, neck, decollete, elbows, knees, etc. You’ll know by trying these three different types of moisturizers which ones nourish and protect your delicate winter skin, and keep it looking and feeling its best.
One of the most important tips to remember when applying a lotion, creme or body butter: Apply to slightly damp skin. Not wet skin and not dry skin.
When you apply a moisturizer top slightly damp skin (e.g. after a shower, bath or hand washing, leaving some moisture – like dew – on your skin, the moisturizer will seal in the water that will help to protect your skin. Try it and you’ll see.
When applied to completely dry skin, your moisturizer doesn’t feel at all the same as when it’s applied to slightly damp skin, and your skin feels luxuriously soft and nourished.
Here’s some specific info about the differences of Red Note Botanica’s three moisturizers: Lotion Potion No. 9, Ooh la la Creme, and Butter Up! You’re Super Fab…
LOTION POTION NO. 9 is a super thick luscious lotion. Sometimes customers have told us that they need to take the top off to squeeze out dollops, because it doesn’t pour out, like milkier lotions. Still, it is our lightest body moisturizer. We can offer you a by request custom-prepared lighter, more readily pourable lotion; however, the original formulation of this product is quite thick and lovely, because we think this just what your skin needs, and we know this a sign of its superior quality and effectiveness.
OOH LA LA CREME is a whipped creme with a higher ratio of butters and oils to water. It quickly penetrates dry skin all over to relieve dryness. Nutrient and vitamin-rich mango butter gives it a delightful soft creamy texture that is easily absorbed. It is lusciously emollient and pampering, and perfect for all over soothing of dry skin.
BUTTER UP! YOU’RE SUPER FAB… has the highest percentage of shea, mango, cocoa, and shorea butters to soothe and protect your driest skin. It takes a few secs to really soak in, but when it does, it’s absolutely f-a-b! Our body butter is “like butter”, uber thick, rich and spreadable. You may have tried body butters that seem much lighter, more like a lotion or creme. I believe the superior quality of a body butter is that it is more balm or butter-like, more emollient to treat, heal and protect driest skin.
Our body butter heals very dry, brittle, irritated skin. Everyone – nurses, doctors, teachers, dentists, florists, and people of all ages and occupations who wash their hands frequently love it, AND though they may not tell you, guys with hardworking hands love it too! Once they see and feel how well it heals their skin, they can’t stop using it.
Fragrance-free body butter, free of all fragrances and colorants is especially formulated for the driest most sensitive skin. I created it for my young daughter who experienced very dry skin, and would frequently break out in rashes or a plethora of superficial bumps from OTC dermatology recommended creams and lotions. On the other hand, this body butter helped to retain the natural moisture in her skin, and never resulted in rashes or breakouts. Customers who have experienced exceptionally dry skin resulting from cancer treatments or suffer from seasonal eczema tell us that they love this body butter.
Make the world a better place, and your own intimate world a happier place by coming over to Red Note Botanica for some body butter this winter! Who knew it could be this simple!
It sounds silly, but hey, we’ve heard your stories, and we’re just doing our part to get YOUR word out there.
- cocoa butter
- shorea butter
- mango butter
- shea butter
- apricot kernel oil
- avocado oil
- babassu oil
- grape seed oil
- sunflower seed oil
For more info about the vitamins and nutrients in these individual natural and organic oils and butters, and their benefits to your skin, please check out the Ingredients page on our website.
The colder and drier days of autumn and winter are a call to listen to the look and feel of our skin, and to start thinking about heavier cremes and body butters throughout the fall and winter. Upgrading to a thicker moisturizing treatment will pay off big time throughout winter.
Keep the same fragrance if you like (or explore new warm fall and winter fragrances).
Replace your lotion with a thicker creme, and your creme with a body butter.
Keep new favorites close at hand, in the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom nightstand, and on your desk at work. Pop a sample or travel mini body butter in your purse or tote to grab throughout your day as you dash about on errands or to meetings. Why suffer with dry hands until you get home?
It’s much easier to care for delicate skin, and to prevent dry, sore, rough areas that can lead to more serious skin issues than it is to treat these issues.
When it’s so easy and fun to pamper your skin, there’s absolutely no need for dry skin this winter!
Create beautiful seasonal rituals to care for your skin and your spirit as you spend more time indoors with central heating and the dryness it creates in your skin.
- Take a warm bath or shower nightly.
- Twice a week, gently exfoliate with Gentle Exfoliating Sugar Scrub for a fresh smooth surface, then spread on BUTTER UP! YOU’RE SUPER FAB..all over from your neck to your toes, just to feel how fabulous it feels to be covered in rich thick natural mango, cocoa, shorea and shea butters in your favorite fragrance.
- On nights when you’re not exfoliating (for more on exfoliating as an absolutely fab first step to do for your skin, but not to overdo, check out one of our best blogs on gentle exfoliation, reach for a bath melt.
- A bath melt is made of just a few ingredients – natural cocoa butter and coconut and avocado oils. The first two are solid at room temp and avocado is liquid. You melt the oils and butters, add colorant (if desired) and fragrance, and freeze to solidify, Once solid, they remain solid (because they are composed primarily of butters and oils that are solid at room temp and butters with a high melting point), although they may get slightly mushy if you squeeze them, which is actually good. Break a small one in half, plop it into your bath, and step in. Voila, immediate softness on contact. Amazing!
- Red Note Botanica does not at this time manufacture bath melts. However, I teach DIY bath melt classes at several community education districts around town. Want to make some DIY bath melts this winter? Keep in touch with where I’ll be around town by signing up for our monthly email e-newsletter “Bonjour Cherie, Let’s Talk Skincare” (home page of our website); OR by “liking” us at Red Note Botanica Facebook where we post our class schedules. Simply click for easy-peasy registration. I’ll see you soon at a bath melt making party!
- As noted above, always remember to apply an overall lotion, creme or body butter while skin is still slightly damp after your evening bath or shower. Use it every time. It will go on more easily without tugging at delicate skin tissue, and will absorb more readily, making it more effective to nourish, heal and protect. It’s your finale skincare step, and we promise you’ll notice a beautiful difference.
- Slide under your duvet. Dig into the pages of a wonderful book or mag. Watch a favorite film. Sip a hot tea or cocoa. Find time within your busy schedule to pamper yourself and treat you with the same loving gentle care you give to others.
This delightfully indulgent ritual will mark the start of fall and set the bar for just how wonderful you’ll want your skin to feel all fall and winter. You will notice an immediate difference in how your skin looks and feels. With consistent care, your skin will be its most beautiful to the eye and the touch!
You’ll see that your skin will feel this amazingly soft and fabulously fragrant all over when you treat yourself to the everyday luxury of fresh natural skincare.
YOU live in your skin everyday of the year. Il faut se sentir bien dans sa peau. YOU must feel good in your skin.
When others cite a litany of dry skin complaints this cold weather season, you’ll hold the secret to skin that is in its best condition!
This holiday season, share your secret of skincare that will keep skin its healthiest, softest and most radiant all year around.
Wishing you a warm, happy, healthy holiday season! xo