Botaneco Garden is a range available exclusively at Guardian with 57 products including shampoos, body washes and scrubs.

Guardian’s latest range takes an organic route to personal hygiene, writes Meera Murugesan

I BUY almost all of my personal care products from the pharmacy and I’m not fussy about brands — I’m willing to try anything as long as it doesn’t dry the skin or have an overly strong fragrance.

I find pharmacy brands work just as well as high-end toiletry products that are both expensive and hard to come by.

At the end of the day, hygiene is just about soap and water.

Botaneco Garden is a range available exclusively at Guardian with 57 products including shampoos, body washes and scrubs, lotions, hand creams and a baby range too. The products have been specifically developed to create formulations that are free from harmful chemicals to appeal to the young and health-conscious consumer.

Well, I’m neither young nor particularly “health-conscious” where personal care products are concerned. I rarely lead labels and am not too particular about what I use. Occasionally, when I’ve run out of shampoo, I have used a bar of bathing soap to wash my hair (it works wonders to remove grease from an oily scalp by the way).

CHEMICAL FREE

I tried three products from Botaneco Garden — the Organic Chia Seed Oil & Honey body wash, body lotion and hand cream. All three are free from ingredients which are now being classified as “harmful”, such as silicones, sulfates, parabens, mineral oil and colourants.

The range uses organic honey extract from France and chia seed from Germany. It also comes in an attractive yellow and green packaging.

The body wash and lotion, I found to be ideal for everyday use. The body wash had a rich enough lather to meet my standards (I don’t like non-lathering products) but didn’t leave my skin feeling dry or tight as some heavily lathering products do. The fragrance was subtle which suited me fine too.

I used it on my 6-year-old daughter too and her skin seemed fine after a wash, not dry or taut.

The lotion has a very light texture. It was easy to apply, dried off quickly and generally gave adequate moisture to the skin. But it didn’t work as well on my legs and heels, which tend to be very dry and scaly. Probably because my legs require a more intensive solution, like a heavy cream.

The hand cream on the other hand was a life saver, especially in the office where it tends to be cold and my hands and especially the tips of my fingers always feel dry and itchy.

I used it as often as needed and it moisturised my hands well, with no greasiness. Some hand creams do tend to feel greasy and it’s not a nice feeling when you’re trying to go about your daily chores or activities. Imagine having to shake hands with people when you’ve got greasy palms? Not a good first impression. This cream avoided all those common mistakes.

In general, Botaneco Garden is a good purchase for those looking for healthier, safer and also affordable personal care products. Most products that take this clean or natural approach are so expensive that consumers think twice before making a purchase.

This range won’t hurt your budget too much as it’s a pharmacy product and at the same time, you’re taking the step to be clean and “chemical free”. Available at Guardian outlets. Price: RM20.70 for body wash, RM19.70 for lotion and RM9.80 for hand cream.

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