Monday 12 April 2010

Arbonne’s fyi (for young individuals) range

The first thing to say is that I am not in the target audience for these products, which are very much aimed at the teen market. The bright colours on the box should be enough of a giveaway but if it isn't, the name spells it out - f.y.i. = for young individuals. But I am most definitely still young at heart (so much nicer than childish !) so I was quite happy to test them out.

The whole range comes in four signature scents to be chosen depending on your mood and your personality : Vivacious, Mysterious, Flirtatious and Ambitious. As they say on the website, "If you want to learn an exciting, new language, give speak your language a thought ! f.y.i. Arbonne® Speak Your Language is an incredible line of body products —body wash, body cream, body scrub and spray fragrance — infused with four distinct aromas for the girl who wants to make a bold statement. You’ll be fluent in the arts of mystery, ambition, flirtation and vivaciousness with unique f.y.i. products that let you say what’s on your mind, without saying a word!"

Now, I love big in-your-face smells in the shower so I absolutely loved the zingy, fruity scents that really wake you up in the morning and lift your spirits after a long day at work. The four signature scents available are : Vivacious - "Lively notes of coconut, pineapple, passion fruit and guava create an irresistible fragrance that's sure to draw an entourage", Mysterious - "Blackberries and pomegranates are dark, mystical fruits sought after for their intoxicating and unique aroma", Flirtatious - "With origins from exotic lands and a reputation for sweetness, the unique scent of grapefruit and mango invokes feelings of fun and playfulness", and Ambitious -"The dynamic scent of green tea and clover stimulates the senses, leaving you feeling refreshed and energized".

First of all, I tested Vivacious Wash & Wear Body Wash. The website says, "You won’t want to leave the shower. Wash&Wear Body Wash leaves skin ultra clean and carries an irresistible scent you can wash up with and wear out the door." It did leave me feeling incredibly refreshed and in a good mood, but my skin didn't feel as moisturised as it does with some shower gels. I would have liked the scent to linger on my skin for longer after I'd dried off too, but you could boost the perfume by smothering yourself in the matching body cream or spray fragrance afterwards. My one little niggle is that you have to squeeze the bottle quite hard to get any product out !

Next up was Flirtatious Sugarslush Body Scrub. "Sweeten your skin’s appeal with this sugar slush of jojoba beads and gentle exfoliants that foam up and sweep away dirt. Skin is left with a glowing, cashmere-soft finish." In the tub, it seemed a bit runny to me and on the skin, it was nowhere near as abrasive or scratchy as some other body scrubs I've used, which isn't necessarliy a good thing if it's supposed to be exfoliating. But, I reminded myself, this range is targetted at teens who presumably don't need so much exfoliating power to get babysoft skin. I'd define it as more of a shower gel with exfoliating properties than an intensive exfoliaiting scrub.
Before I even got into the shower, one thing that did bother me was the amount of excess packaging. Each tube or tub comes in a superfluous cardboard box and also contains a foldout leaflet with instructions in various languages. By eliminating the box and the leaflet, that would mean a lot less waste - especially as each product is perfectly sealed with a foil covering to be removed before use. (I actually spent a couple of minutes squeezing the body wash in vain before realising this !)
The list of ingredients on the box contains some dubious-sounding ingredients, such as Polyethelene, Disodium Laureth Sulfosuccinate, Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate and some artificial colours (Red 30 (Cl 73360), Yellow 5 Lake (Cl 19140), Red 30 Lake (Cl 73360), Iron Oxides (Cl 77499). But to offset this, there are also some nice natural ingredients, including fruit and flower extracts. When you see some of the brightly-coloured and artificial-tasting sweets and drinks that teens shovel down their throats day after day, I'm sure they won't be at all bothered by a few artificial additives in their beauty products !
To conclude, the products are fun, funky and smell absolutely gorgeous. Teens will love the hidden body language messages the products suggest. While they are not as intensively moisturising or exfoliating as some other products I've tried, they do seem well suited for the young skin they are intended for. The excess packaging and some of the artificial ingredients are my only two real negatives.
star rating : 4/5
RRP : Products include Wash and wear body wash £11.50; SugarSlush Body Scrub £16; BodyBetter Body cream £17 or handbag essential Personal Space Spray Fragrance £12.50

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