Today’s post is for those of you who are interested in natural ingredients and responsibly souced products. I was recently contacted by the people from Utama Spice, a lovely natural aromatherapy company all the way over in Bali. For most of us, this might be the year of no travel but we can still dream about beautiful places and experience them at a distance.
Utama Spice specialises in 100% natural aromatherapy body and hair care products. They’re based in Ubud, a part of Bali that’s particularly known for traditional crafts and artisan creators. The company uses traditional herbal knowledge to create their products. Everything is handmade from ethically sourced and sustainably produced materials in Indonesia and shipped all over the world.
The skin and hair care is free from common irritants, but I want to particularly focus on the SLS free ranges, because that can be harder to find in the UK.
Why is SLS free important?
SLS stands for sodium lauryl sulfate and it’s what makes soaps and shampoos foam up. SLS has been used for around 90 years in many products, and isn’t dangerous in itself. However, it is an irritant to some people. If you find that you get an itchy scalp after washing your hair, or that your skin feels dry and irritated after cleansing, then SLS could be the culprit. Hence many people with skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis choose to avoid products with SLS.
How to use SLS free products
The big difference here is that SLS free products won’t foam up in the way you might be used to, and they will probably leave your skin or hair feeling differently too.
It was very noticable to me that the Utama Spice SLS free liquid soap was much softer on the hands compared to other brands. My hands just didn’t feel dried out afterwards. When you’re washing your hands as much as we’ve all been doing this year, these things matter. I tested out the zingy and refreshing lemongrass variety, though other scents including lavender and mint are available.
The soaps all have coconut oil as a base, plus a mix of a small amount of plant oils. The ingredients list is only 5 elements long.
SLS free shampoo – my experience
SLS-free shampoo, on the other hand, takes a little more getting used to. Since it doesn’t foam up, you might be tempted to add more shampoo, but it’s actually better to add less product and more water instead. Your hair might feel a bit crispy the first few times you use SLS free shampoo, as it’s adjusting to a very different approach. As well as being great for curing an itchy scalp, SLS free shampoo is great for preserving the natural oils in the hair and helping curly hair recover its bounce.
I’ve been using the Utama Spice All Natural Shampoo for about a week now, so my hair is still at the crispy stage, though it definitely has more texture and wave. I’m going to pass this on to a friend who suffers from an itchy scalp because I think she can make better use of it. Will definitely report back so stay tuned.
Danau Satu Atomizing Essential Oil Diffuser
The other product I’ve been trying out from Utama Spice is their delightful diffuser. This video shows how it works:
I quite often burn a scented candle when I’m working but if anything the diffuser seems like a calmer source of scent, and definitely safer for a desk full of papers.
This is what’s known as a nebulizing diffuser. It works in a similar way to a perfume atomizer. A small air pump, powered via a plug or USB lead, blows air across a small tube. This creates a powerful vacuum that pulls the essential oil from the bottom of the tube to the top in a fine spray, with no added water or heat involved.
This is what it looks like when it arrives – very securely packed and easy to put together:
And this is what it looks like when it’s all put together and in position on my desk. I’ve photographed it close up so you can see it properly, but it’s really quite compact. The glass bowl on the top is about the size of a small apple.
The gentle light, delicate mist and powerful scent makes it a little oasis of calm. I really like this. It’s lovely to be connected to a piece of Bali in this way.
If you can’t or don’t want to burn candles in your home, but you still want a relaxing, atmospheric scent then this is a great choice.
Utama Spice product details
Products are 100% natural and do not contain parabens, SLS or artificial colours or fragrances.
Have you ever tried any natural aromatherapy products like these? What do you think of Utama Spice? Leave a comment and let me know