Monday, 7 December 2015

Review: LAVANILA Body Butters (Pure Vanilla & Vanilla Summer)

Hi everyone!

How was your weekend? Hope it was a good one. Mine wasn't too shabby, although I'm still recovering (kind of) from a late night on Friday. I'm so not used to it!

Anyway, today’s post is all about a brand I discovered whilst holidaying in the US last year. I absolutely fell in love with LAVANILA’s body butters, used them up waaaaaaaay too quickly, then began searching for them in Australia all to no avail….until Natural Supply Co came to my rescue & started supplying them WOOOT! EDIT: They've since stopped stocking the body butters sadly, probably due to Sephora Australia stocking them instead.
For those not in the know, here’s a bit about LAVANILA, from founder Danielle:
"I started Lavanila because I believed in a new generation of healthy beauty products that were better, safer and smarter. As a mother with two small children, I wanted products made from skin–loving, vitamin rich ingredients and products free of harsh, potentially toxic chemicals that seemed dangerous to the body and the planet. While “natural”, “organic” and “green” continue to confuse customers (and sometimes even me), I can tell you what our commitment to 100% Healthy means to us:
• Important breakthroughs in advanced natural technology that are meaningful. We are inventors and pioneers…redefining categories with the world’s first healthy fragrance and an award winning natural deodorant. (yes it works!)
• Multitasking formulas made with a real commitment to smart, natural ingredients that have been clinically tested and approved as safe.
• A commitment to be as responsible and eco friendly as possible. From recyclable packaging to community partnerships and practices that minimize our carbon footprint, we are committed to a greener, cleaner world.
• A commitment to cruelty free beauty.
I hope you love Lavanila and have as much fun using the products as we do making them. From award-winning products to breakthrough technologies, we are committed to delivering luxuriously healthy products that work. And while we are far from perfect, we promise to keep trying!"

(You can also read more about the brand here and here. I really like that last line about not being perfect, yet striving to do so. I think it shows that the company is human.)

These body butters come in various scents – Vanilla Grapefruit, Vanilla Lavender, Pure Vanilla, Vanilla Summer, Vanilla Lemon & Vanilla Coconut – as well as an unscented version. Here in Australia they retail for $29.95 each, which is only $10 more than the US price before tax. Each tube is 190g, although there's also a 78g tube in Pure Vanilla for the same price as the larger version in the US. Today I’m reviewing the Pure Vanilla & Vanilla Summer versions as they are/were the ones I purchased most recently + these 2 are my favourites from the range.

Both tubes are the same in terms of design, background colour & artwork; the only difference being that the Pure Vanilla has a cream-coloured aspect to it and the Vanilla Summer contains an orange aspect. Apologies for some crappy descriptive work there, but you’ll be able to tell the difference between the 2 in the above photo. Having seen the other tubes, they’re all the same but each has a different colour.

All of their tubes include this blurb on the back:

And purely for interest's sake, here's the ingredients list for both tubes:

Pure Vanilla's ingredients
Vanilla Summer's ingredients

As you might be able to see, these products contain a whole host of skin-loving, skin-nourishing goodies like shea & cocoa butters, squalene, coconut oil & Vitamin E; as well as some interesting ingredients like Kakadu plum extract & goji berry, which are both well-known anti-oxidants. I will however note that these body butters do contain beeswax so vegans, you might want to check out something else. Whilst they also contain some glycols (something I normally try to avoid in skin/bodycare products as much as possible), I'm willing to be a hypocrite & overlook that factor, for reasons that I'm about to outline below.

I’m very happy to report that these body butters do a wonderful job in the moisturising department and thankfully don’t dry my skin out, unlike previous body butters/moisturisers I've used. My skin also feels nice & smooth too, especially if I’ve shaved my legs & popped some of this on afterwards. The consistency of the body butters is standard across the board (neither too thick nor too thin) and is both easy to work into the skin (even if you’ve put too much on) and well absorbed once applied. I would've taken a photo to prove my point, but I wanted to get this post up today & ran out of time...sorry about that.

Now for the best bit….the scents themselves. If you’re expecting a sweet, cake-like vanilla smell from the Pure Vanilla, then forget it. It definitely smells more like a tropical vanilla, or the tiare flowers that you can smell when in a tropical destination like Fiji, when you first apply it. Once it settles into your skin, you may be able to vaguely detect that true sweeter vanilla scent. Either way, it’s different to your standard vanilla body butters and I like it for that reason. Just a heads up - Vanilla Coconut & Pure Vanilla both smell the same to me, so IMO it’s not worth buying both as I previously did.

As for Vanilla Summer….oh lordy come to Mama! Unlike Pure Vanilla, I can’t discern any vanilla smell from it, but what I do get is this tropical scent mix of mango & pineapple, albeit a mix that smells a bit more synthetic to me than natural. As far as I’m aware, LAVANILA body butters don’t contain synthetic fragrances, yet for some reason this one doesn’t seem entirely natural to me. TBH though I really don't care because I bloody love this smell! Out of the 2, this is definitely my favourite – so much so that I bought 2 tubes of the stuff last time. It just smells like a summer holiday to me.

Neither the Pure Vanilla nor Vanilla Summer are over-powering, but in saying that they don’t last for long on the skin (although you can sniff it on your clothes the following day). I’d say both last about 10-20 minutes on the skin before settling down – you would have to put your nose up to your skin to really sniff it.

Overall, I love these body butters & will definitely continue buying them, especially now that they have an Aussie stockist. Might even consider trying one of their deodorants too. I'm also hoping at some stage NSC might start stocking the brand new Vanilla Bean creamy body oil, it sounds utterly luscious.

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*All products featured for review on The Novice Life are purchased by me, unless otherwise stated. Please refer to my disclosure policy for more details.

Have you heard of or tried anything from LAVANILA before? 

P.S. I've just added this post to Ingrid's Monday Makeup Madness Link Up Party - why not come on over & join in the fun?


  1. Body butter in a tube? I'm in! Loving the sound of the Summer one from your description as well.
    There's a lemon and a lavender one on that site you linked as well. They sound pretty good too. I'm going to have to look into this some more. Thanks for the heads up! :)

    1. Oh crap there is too! I'll add the link for the Vanilla Lemon one to the post, already got the Vanilla Lavender in there. Thanks for letting me know!

      Hope you get your hands on some, hopefully you won't regret it. :o)

  2. I've heard about this line and never tried it. Will have to keep my eye out for it. Great review!

    1. I know LAVANILA stuff is sold in Sephora in the US (which is where I got my tubes from whilst travelling last year), not sure about Canada though. Can't remember seeing them when I went there.

  3. They sound quite lovely.
    I've heard such mixed reviews about the deodorant, It is something I'm keen to try though.

    1. I'm keen to try the deodorant too, despite the mixed reviews. I've never tried a natural deodorant before, but I'm curious to see how they work compared to the normal ones.


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