ANTI-AGEING BODY LOTION

We’ve always had high scores for body lotions, over more than 21 years of Beauty Bible testing – a reflection, we feel, of the pleasure factor that body lotions deliver. They are pure ‘me-time’. But in fact for this category we set the bar high, since we also asked questions about firming, tightening and general skin improvements that would categorise these as ‘anti-ageing body lotions’. The following can, of course, be enjoyed at any age (with the emphasis on enjoyment) – but if you are over 40, you might find yourself pleasantly surprised.

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GOLD AWARD and BEST NATURAL- Weleda Almond Sensitive Skin Body Lotion

Good news for touchy skins – because this all-natural body lotion from Weleda, specifically designed to nourish sensitive types, came out tops. Biodynamic and certified natural by NATRUE, it’s a fast-absorbing lotion in an interesting (if somewhat utilitarian) pump which keeps air out of the product, thus eliminating the need for preservatives). Organic beeswax from Africa helps strengthen the skin’s natural barrier function, while the key ingredient is sourced from organic almond crops grown in Spain. Somewhat romantically, they tell us these trees – which belong to a co-operative of almond farmers cover 100,000 acres of the Valencian countryside. Now that’s a spring sight we’d like to see (and smell). Thanks to those almonds, meanwhile, this has a subtle almond-y scent.

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

'10/10. I would and will buy this smooth creamy product, which is terrific on my dry skin without being oily or slippy and shiny. My skin is thinning a bit with age (70) and asthma medication and needs all the help it can get. I love the fact this has no harsh ingredients. It’s inoffensive and effective and will travel with me in my camper van without taking up too much space' • 'Calms and soothes skin as well as moisturising. My daughter suffers from eczema and this helps to keep it at bay (although not treatment enough during actual flare-ups). Skin is gently and soothingly cared for; feels as cocooned as an almond in its kernel…' • 'The rich, creamy texture is very smooth to apply and absorbs within a couple of minutes. My skin felt calmed and comforted straight away, and after a few days the redness on my legs has decreased. The sensitivity patches look much better. It is effective – though the packaging might put me off purchasing, as it is practical but not hugely appealing' • 'The lotion declares it is good for sensitive skin and I twice used it specifically to help calm skin and was impressed. I was in two minds about the marzipan-y smell but my husband commented that it was lovely' • 'A lovely product that glided on very smoothly and was absorbed quickly with no sticky residue. My skin is very dry, so I normally go for quite rich body butters but I'm happy with this product as it is so easily absorbed and my skin feels constantly smooth and not dry, which it often is during the winter months. I can definitely see this becoming a firm favourite.' 

£14.50 for 200 ml - click to buy

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SILVER AWARD and BEAUTY STEAL AWARD - Sukin Hydrating Body Lotion Lime & Coconut

Sukin is Australia’s No.1 natural skincare brand, now making inroads in the UK – and with products like this, we’re really not surprised. A nourishing lotion, this is subtly – not overwhelmingly – scented with a refreshing, tropical blend of coconut and lime. In a pump-action bottle, it is infused with a rich blend of avocado, rosehip and jojoba oils, together with shea and cocoa butters. Horsetail, nettle, aloe vera and burdock are among the other botanicals which work to soothe dry skin and restore its moisture barrier. (It’s also vegan, by the way.) With the 250ml size coming it at under a tenner, it just squeaks in as a ‘Beauty Steal’, too – which means we have two in this category. Feel free to slather generously!

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

'You can squirt with caution from the pump dispenser, which is a doddle to use with slippery hands – or you can pump out a veritable cream mountain. A dream to apply and very quick; it stays wet for just about long enough to work it in with a bit of a massage' • 'I adore citrus scents and this one, which says it’s lime and coconut scented, lifts my mood and makes me feel extraordinarily clean. It has a really euphoric feel. I suffer from depression and this has really helped when I’ve felt lethargic. I have used half the huge 500 ml bottle in just one month as its an absolute joy to apply. For the price per ml, this is a real bargain' • 'It hydrates superbly, despite its light texture and fluidity, and I was also really pleased with the rapid sinking in factor – you don't need to wait to get dressed' • 'I love this!  I’ve just been on holiday and my legs were quite dry from the sun. No problem, I just smoothed on some of this lovely product and now my legs are lovely and smooth again' • 'Very good product, which made an immediate improvement to my skin leaving it soft and smooth. I am very impressed. My skin can be very itchy after a shower but this product has taken that away, leaving my skin feeling soft and completely nourished' • 'The product lived up to its promise of hydrating skin and improving elasticity, so I would buy it as the results are so good.'  

£16.50 for 500 ml - click to buy

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BRONZE AWARD - This Works Skin Deep Golden Elixir

This is one of our own favourites – not least for the subtle glimmering veil of gold that it delivers to skin. (Lovely on forearms and legs, in particular.) The gold isn’t merely decorative, though; it plays a role in stimulating collagen, while the vitamin A targets wrinkles. A naturally-based, lightweight serum-style product (rather than a rich lotion or cream), Skin Deep Golden Elixir is delivered from a chic, sleek, minimalist bottle via a pump action. (A little note: like many This Works pumps it comes with a teeny ‘plug’ for the nozzle. Don’t throw it away; it really does prevent clogging of that nozzle.) It’s the smell which hooked us – and testers agree, below – a delicious and somehow ‘grounding’ fusion of clary sage (also regenerating), rose (antioxidant) and patchouli.

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

'It was great to receive this silky, luxurious product before the Christmas festivities to perk up my pale English skin. I couldn't believe how shimmery it was but not in a bad way.  It gave my skin a golden glow without looking like fake tan. My skin looked healthy and nicely hydrated. It wore it when I went out to parties but I'll also wear it when I go on holiday to give a lovely glow. The shimmering is just on the surface though – it doesn't last. The product claimed to hydrate and enhance skin and did live up to those claims' • 'My skin is definitely feeling and looking more hydrated on the side I trialled it, softer and more nourished. Short-term it does make my skin look more youthful; the shimmer was noticeable instantly and dry patches look better straightaway' • 'I loved this product. It made my skin feel lovely and soft and the extra sparkle of the gold is just great. I have already recommended it and will buy again' • 'I instantly had soft glowing skin which smells amazing. By the end of the trial my skin definitely glowed and felt very soft and nourished. It was lovely to use before going out in the evening as my skin had a beautiful glow and I felt amazing. The fragrance was beautiful and meant I could easily go without perfume. It feels as though it penetrates deeper than a usual body lotion but much pricier than my usual product so I will ask for it as a present!' • 'This absorbed instantly and was very moisturising.  Skin looked more supple and younger.  I loved it and will consider repurchasing.'

£45 for 120 ml - click to buy

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BEAUTY STEAL AWARD - Dr.Organic Coconut Oil Body Lotion

Yes, you could slather your skin with coconut oil straight from the jar. But – as our testers concur – it’s so much more pleasurable to use this, in which that organic virgin coconut oil stars alongside aloe vera leaf juice, fruit oils, vitamin A and papaya and mango fruit extracts. It’s light but really rich, and sinks in fast – a great slather-and-go product, infused with a tropical (but not overpowering) scent of bergamot, orange, exotic fruits and (of course) coconut.

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

'As soon as I had smoothed the cream in, my skin felt instantly smoother and nourished and moisutrised.  The dry areas around knees, shins and elbows lapped it up and looked much better' • 'The product promised to hydrate and revitalise the epidermis, leaving the skin perfectly balanced, rejuvenated and naturally smooth – and the product did do this' • 'Thick creamy lotion that holds well without dripping before you smooth it in and was easy to apply' • 'Despite being quite thick rich lotion it absorbed surprisingly well and I didn't have to wait long at all before I could pull on jeans or tights or tops' • 'Really lovely product, very easy to use and skin instantly felt soft and silky' • 'Quick absorption meant this was a breeze to use.  My skin was immediately rehydrated and nourished. And I could get dressed in reasonable time with lovely soft smooth-feeling legs' • 'This was a very good value quality product with no cheap coconut smell; its good on my daughters eczema prone skin' • 'This is a winner; overall less itchy, less dry skin with a more smooth looking finish.  Skin felt ready for tanning products because hydration levels were good and it could cope with my hot shower routine as long as I kept using it – a first!' • 'A wonderful, no frills, does-what-it-says-on-the-tube product. A dream to use and delivered on all its claims. Loved how my skin felt after using it and the fact that no clothing was marked.'

£7.99 for 200 ml - click to buy