Del Brown Approved!

The ingredient-scrutiniser, Del Brown has a passion for natural & organic, chemical free skincare. Researching ingredients and talking with the manufacturers. "Free YOUR skin now!" with skincare free from petrochemicals, sulphates, parabens, phthalates, glycols, PEGs, DEAs, mineral oil, synthetic polymers, synthetic fragrance or colours. All personally researched, tried, tested and Del Brown Approved!

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Friendly Soap Cocoa Butter Facial Cleansing Bar

IMG_2583Friendly Soap Cocoa Butter Facial Cleansing Bar – 95g £2.49

Followers of Del Brown Approved will already be familiar with Friendly Soaps.  This one is their Cocoa Butter facial cleansing bar.

“Wash your face with a bar of soap? Have they gone mad!  No one does that anymore.. do they?”  

Consider this;  How many ingredients are there in your current face washing product, be that a cream cleanser, face wash gel or anything else you’d care to suggest.


Counted them?  How many were there, six?, ten? more?  How many of them ingredients were of no benefit to you or your skin?  For example, colourings, perfumes, synthetic emulsifiers to stop the ingredients from separating in the plastic bottle.  Synthetic preservatives to stop the product going mouldy on the supermarket shelves.

So straight to the ingredients in this bar.  One third cocoa butter, one third olive oil and one third coconut oil.  That is it.  No fragrances added of any kind, no colourings and no preservatives.  Cruelty free, so no animal testing.  Vegan society approved, so no animal derived ingredients.


If your face is suffering and you’re at your whits end trying to solve any number of skin conditions from itchiness to spots, then I encourage you to try something like this facial cleansing bar for just one month.  See if your skin says ‘thank you’ for not over loading it with a cocktail of synthetic ingredients.

Ingredients: Sodium Cocoa Butterate, Sodium Olivate, Sodium Cocotte, Aqua

Cocoa Butter Facial Cleansing Bar


Bee Inspired Natural Lip Balm


Bee Inspired Natural Lip Balm – 5ml £4.50

Some people are literally addicted to lip balms, applying them hourly throughout the day. Does this sound like you?  If so, check the ingredients to see if it contains petroleum. Petroleum based products can cause lips to dry out even faster than usual, hence the need to keep re-applying.

Petroleum is literally petrol, yes the same stuff that powers your car.  Petrol is of course a natural product, but once it has been extracted, refined and processed, it is then used in cheap synthetic cosmetics.  One downside of petroleum is that it creates a barrier effect on the skin, literally suffocating the pores where it is applied.  The jury is still out as to the possible side effects of using petroleum based products, some studies suggesting it is a carcinogenic.  All the while there is a question mark over the ingredient, I shall be avoiding it.


So if you are looking for a simple, fragrance free, quality lip balm, look no further.  This lip balm from Bee Inspired contains just three 100% natural ingredients.  Sweet almond oil, beeswax and vitamin E oil.  That’s it.  No perfumes, no colourings, no preservatives and of course, petroleum free.  Made with bees wax produced from their own bee hives, Bee Inspired create small batch products by hand, using natural ingredients and without cruelty to animals.


Not everyone wants a lip product with a fruity fragrance, so being fragrance free, both men and women feel comfortable using it.  Unlike petroleum based lip balms that just form a barrier on the skin, the natural oils and bees wax in this product penetrate deep into the skin, hydrating dry lips and making them feel soft and comfortable.

This easy to use, fuss free lip balm is a winter essential and fully Del Brown Approved!

Ingredients: prunus amygdalus dulcis, beeswax, tocopherol

Click HERE to see more Del Brown Approved lip balms

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Friendly Soap Tea Tree Essential Oil Soap


Friendly Soap Tea Tree Essential Oil Soap – 95g (£1.99)

If you’re new to Friendly Soap, let me give you a quick bit of background.  This new brand is run by two men, Geoff and Rob, who make all their soaps by hand up in Yorkshire.  Their entire range is Vegan Society Approved, Cruelty Free and they have chosen not to use any Palm Oil in any of their soaps.


So to this, their Tea Tree soap. Did you know that there are over 100 different varieties of Tea Tree oil.  Only one variety, Melaleuca alternifolia, contains the complete list of properties making it naturally anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, anti-septic, anti-viral, a fungicide and insecticide.  Melaleuca alternifolia, native to New South Wales in Australia, is a species of tree or shrub from the myrtle family.  So when you are buying any tea tree product, you must check the ingredients and know exactly what you’re buying.


The mix of olive oil, coconut oil and shea butter provides foaming white bubbles, cleansing and moisturising properties. The fourth biggest ingredient in the bar is the tea tree oil (Melaleuca alternifolia).  The fifth and final ingredient is turmeric powder, an unusual ingredient commonly associated with cooking, but has been used on the skin in India for generations to treat fungal conditions, bruising, leech bites, inflammatory skin conditions and infected wounds.


This soap is good for all skin types, but with the added tea tree and turmeric, makes this particularly suitable for sporty, active people, sweaty teenagers with sweaty pits and feet (athlete’s foot).  Anyone dealing with spots on the back, shoulders and chest, the tea tree will help fight bacteria on the skin.  Also if you have any little cuts or wounds on the skin, washing with a tea tree soap, aids the healing process.  A genuine pleasure to use and absolutely Del Brown Approved!

Ingredients: Sodium olivate, Sodium cocoate, Aqua, Butyrospermum parkii butter, Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) essential oil contains limonene, Curcuma longa (turmeric) root powder

Click here to read my other ‘Friendly Soap’ reviews

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Friendly Soap Natural Velvety Lather Orange and Lavender Shaving Soap


Friendly Soap Orange and Lavender Shaving Soap – 95g (£2.49)

Attention all wet shavers!  Be that male or female shaving hair on chins, legs, top of your head or anywhere else for that matter.  What do you currently use to shave with in the way of cream or gel?  Have you looked at the ingredients to see what you’re putting on your skin?  The primary purpose of a shaving cream or gel is to provide lubrication to the blade whilst gliding over the skin.  So what if I suggested a bar of soap made with 100% natural ingredients, that foams up in your hand like most soaps, but that can also be used to shave with!

Those clever gents at Friendly Soaps have developed a shaving soap made with coconut, olive and castor oil, together with clay.  The combination of these ingredients provide natural lather and a lubricating film on the skin, essential to a clean shave.


Holding the bar over the sink, I added a little water and quickly whipped up a luxurious foam which was perfect to shave with.  The shaving brush part is optional as for ladies shaving your legs, just work the bar directly on the skin, no brush required.


The base and biggest ingredients in this bar are coconut oil and olive oil followed by water, castor oil and clay.  Then we see the essential oils of lavender and orange and finally aloe vera leaf juice.  Now don’t expect the bar to smell overly strong of either orange or lavender, instead the bar has a fairly neutral fresh aroma.

Shaving soaps are traditionally round, heavily fragrances usually with some sort of synthetic woody aroma and quite expensive.  One popular high street brand sells a 100g bar for £12.00 and contains both synthetic perfume and colourings.  This on the other hand retails for £2.49 for 95g and is 100% synthetic free.


As the ingredients are so pure, I didn’t react, develop a shaving rash or spots.  My skin was also left feeling smooth and moisturised, not dry or irritated.  I took this bar whilst travelling and used it both as a both a regular soap and a shaving soap. Incidental if only used to shave with, I can see this bar lasting you months!  Fully Del Brown Approved!

Ingredients: Sodium cocoate, Sodium olivate, Aqua, Sodium castorate, Kaolin (clay), Lavandula angustifolia (lavender) essential oil contains linalool, limonene, geraniol, Citrus aurantium dulcis (orange) essential oil contains limonene, Aloe barbadensis (aloe vera) leaf juice

Click here for my ‘Friendly Soap’ reviews

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Friendly Soap Lavender Soap


Friendly Soap – Lavender Soap – 95g (£1.99)

Let’s talk Lavender. It’s one of those fragrances you either love or loath.  Lots of people associate Lavender as being an ‘old grannies’ smell.  In the 70’s there was a range of soaps, talc and bubble bath products, all reeking of artificial lavender fragrance and synthetically coloured bright purple.

If you’ve ever picked a lavender flower and rubbed it between your fingers, you’ll have smelt REAL lavender oil.  It’s a million miles away from the synthetic version from the 70’s that your Granny loved so much, especially at Christmas.


Aroma aside, did you know Lavender oil has a vast array of therapeutic properties?  Not only recognised for its calming and relaxing effect, but also for its antibacterial properties.  Lavender oil has a chemically complex structure with over 150 active constituents, which explains its effectiveness at helping with everything from insect bites to rheumatism. The botanical name, Lavandula, comes from the Latin, lavare, which means “to wash,” probably for its history of use cleansing wounds, as well as washing linens and in personal bathing. It is a known anti-inflammatory, antifungal, antidepressant, antiseptic, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antispasmodic, analgesic, calmative, detoxifier, hypotensive and sedative.


So now its time to give the old fashioned Lavender some well deserved respect.  If you are a sufferer of skin conditions such as spots, acne, redness or skin irritation, try washing and bathing in a product that uses genuine lavender essential oil.  If you’re going on holiday, wash with a lavender soap to gently fragrance your skin, repelling mosquitoes and moths.  If you have trouble sleeping, make time for a relaxing bath featuring lavender oil, before bed.

The base of this soap is cold pressed olive oil, coconut oil, water and moisturising shea butter, then we see ‘Lavandula angustifolia‘ Lavender essential oil and Lavender flower blossom, finely cut up and sprinkled within the bar.   This provides a gentle exfoliating effect when washing the body and provides even more natural lavender fragrance.


I’m a big fan of Lavender and this soap is a genuine pleasure to use.  As its all about the ingredients remember, so don’t be fooled by marketing.  Always check the ingredients list and seek out the Latin name for lavender.  It’s the essential oil you want, not ‘essence’ or ‘fragrance’.

Ingredients: Sodium olivate, Sodium cocoate, Aqua, Butyrospermum parkii butter, Lavandula angustifolia (lavender) essential oil contains linalool, limonene, geraniol, Lavandula angustifolia (lavender)

Click here for my other ‘Friendly Soap’ reviews

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Friendly Soap Orange and Grapefruit Soap


‘Friendly Soap’ Orange and Grapefruit  Soap – 95g (£1.99)

I’m particularly excited to bring you my first of many reviews for ‘Friendly Soap’.  Friendly Soaps are hand made in the UK using 100% natural ingredients, Vegan Society and Buav (Cruelty Free) registered.  They don’t add any unnecessary colourings or perfumes.  Their oils are cold pressed and the entire range is also 100% palm oil free.

Now a quick word on Palm oilPalm oil itself is all good, but there is concern about where it is sourced.  In a nut shell, large areas of rain forest have been felled and replaced with palm trees, with the sole intention of extracting the oil for use in the food and cosmetic industry.  Some companies buy their palm oil from sustainable forests, others buy it from the cheapest supplier.


This bar of soap is a sheer pleasure to use.  The base and main ingredients are Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, Water and Shea Butter.  Then we see Orange essential oilGrapefruit essential oil and a small dash of Cayenne powder for some natural orange hue. That is it!  No fillers, nothing artificial, no preservatives, foaming agents, synthetic colourings or perfumes.  On the body it quickly foams up with tiny white cleansing bubbles.  The natural orange hue and fragrance lasts right through to the last use.

Orange Essential Oil is used for a variety of reasons, not just due to its uplifting fresh citrus aroma.  It’s also regarded as being an aphrodisiac, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, anti-depressant and antispasmodic.  Grapefruit essential oil on the other hand is high in vitamin C, often used as an antioxidant, antiseptic, a stimulant and even an antidepressant.


When these two essential oils are mixed with skin loving olive and coconut oil, plus shea butter, the result is a cleansing bar suitable for all skin types.  Use in the bath or shower to wash your body top to toe, leaving your skin feeling clean, fresh and moisturised, not dry or irritated.

If you’re a dedicated ‘supermarket shower gel’ or dare I say a ‘supermarket bought bar of soap’ washer, then I’m talking to YOU!  It’s time to re-think and carefully consider the ingredients you’re applying to your skin on a daily bases.  The ingredients in ‘Camay’ and ‘Imperial Leather’ we all used as children, can not begin to be compared to the likes of these.


Regulars to Del Brown Approved will know I’m all about the ingredients and not the packaging or the price, but I would like to draw your attention to the price tag on this one.  £1.99 (June 2015).

Ingredients: Sodium olivate, Sodium cocoate, Aqua, Butyrospermum parkii butter, Citrus aurantium dulcis (orange) essential oil contains limonene, Citrus grandis (grapefruit) Oil contains limonene, Capsicum frutescens (cayenne pepper) powder

Click here for my other ‘Friendly Soap’ reviews

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Barenaturals Organic Peppermint Soap

IMG_3495 IMG_3500

Barenaturals Organic Peppermint Soap 100g (£3.65)

Yet another absolute winner from Barenaturals.  This peppermint soap really does leave your skin feeling ziggy minty fresh!

The base of the soap is a mixture of Olive, Coconut and sustainable Palm oils, mixed with organic peppermint, organic Corn mint leaf oil and vitamin E.  That’s it!  No nasties, no unnecessary artificial green colour or synthetic mint perfume, this truly is the real deal and an absolute pleasure to use. Corn mint leaves are used in Ayurvedic medicine and are rubbed into the skin to relieve aches and pains, so using this soap post gym workout will not only freshen and clean the skin but may also provide some muscle relief.


The precise mix of the three base oils ensures the skin remains moisturised and doesn’t dry out or cause irritation after use.  The soap quickly lathers up with lots of white natural bubbles and foam which easily clean the entire body, leaving you feeling and smelling minty fresh.  The long lasting aroma is naturally uplifting and stimulating, great for use in the shower first thing in the morning.  As the ingredients are so minimalist and pure, even sensitive skins will love it.

Ingredients: Saponified oils of: Olea Europaea (olive oil), Cocos Nucifera (Coconut), Elaeis Guineensis (sustainable palm), Essential oils of: Organic Mentha Piperita (Peppermint), Organic Mentha Arvensis Leaf Oil (Corn mint), Limonene*, Linalool* Tocopherol (Vitamin E) *naturally occurs in essential oils