AromababyThe people at Aromababy has been kind enough to send us five packs of their  baby range to test and while my babies are  long out of nappies I am sure that some of you could oblige.  The range’s signature blend of Rose, Chamomile and Lavender essential oils are showcased in a mild and minimalist base to give products that are as simple as they are effective.  From a scientific point of view the range has a couple of features to discuss:

Aroma and baby. There is no doubt that babies find some smells reassuring and soothing. Lavender has long been known to have calming and relaxing properties and rose has nourishing and caring overtones. Chamomile is another childhood favourite and gives the fragrance depth and a certain herbalness which is quite yummy. The packaging (being clear) would suggest to me that the essential oils are in the product more for their smell than for any therapeutic benefit – many essential oils break down in UV light – and that is perfectly fine as one should always seek individual advice before using essential oils for medicinal purposes.

Product Structure. I like the way that the formulations (or recipes if you prefer) are so simple yet functional. Xanthan gum is used as a thickener – this is often used to thicken food products and surfactant levels are low (these are the things that de-grease) which is good. The product makes a claim to be sulphate free which it is but as I have explained before, this is more to do with marketing than science.

Preservative Use: Aromababy has chosen to go for  Hydroxymethylglycinate as a preservative for their water containing products. This ingredient is naturally derived and offers protection against bacteria – essential for products containing water!   This preservative has been identified by the European Union as a formaldehyde donor as it does tend to break down into sodium glycinate and formaldehyde in the presence of water.  This fact has been picked up by many bloggers, NGO’s and comentators who then go on to outline all of the dangers of Formaldehyde.  While it is true that formaldehyde is not something that you want to jump into a barrel of, it is also “natural” and occurs in many fruits and vegetables – even the organic ones.

The use of hydroxymethylgycinate in personal care products is carefully monitored to ensure that the likely exposure to formaldehyde falls well below the level required to cause concern.  That said,  our Realize Beauty team don’t have the facilities to analyse each product that passes our desk and can only generalise based on legislation and assumed good manufacturing practice.

Overall a really sweet little range. I am taking the Barrier cream for my feet – love it!

Members of our Realize Beauty club get a chance to win one of four packs (yes, I kept one)!  Entries are open from 20th August and will close on 26th August – winners will be notified by e-mail and goods will be posted out by 27th August for you to try. If you are not a Realize Beauty club member why not join now by clicking through to our sign up page. Good luck!