Niki McGlynn is a homeopath and reflexologist who created Niki’s Organic Balms after being disappointed with the reflexology products available. The range has expanded to do so much more than aid in foot care…….read on to see the multiple uses I found when I had the opportunity to try them…..
They’re organic. Brownie points there. Next I look at the ingredients lists (which I’ve given you below) – to someone with absolutely no knowledge they may not mean a lot but even a complete skincare novice can probably have an idea that ‘rose oil’ and ‘beeswax’ etc. are simple, natural substances, not man-made chemicals.
I love balms, even since I outgrew my greasy acne prone teenage years where I experimented with various astringent chemicals in an attempt to ‘strip’ the spots away. It didn’t work by the way. I love balms because they are the ultimate multitasking product, working their protective, nourishing magic on skin, hands, cuticles, hair, lips, eyebrows, cold induced red noses, literally anything. But only plant oils, not petroleum based ones.
The smells are surprisingly mild as you open the pot, not overwhelming like some products can be (often to mask the smells of the underlying chemical ingredients), but like a perfume develops on the skin, massaging a balm into your skin warms the oils to bring out their aromatic oils. They also melt slightly when warmed to body temperature, making them very easy to apply, not thick and sticky like some balms can be, but they sink in beautifully rather than leaving a greasy layer. That’s the great thing about many natural oils – their particles are compatible with the skin so they absorb really well deep into the skin where they can nourish the young skin while it’s still developing. It also makes them suitable for oily as well as dry skin.
May help with; Verrucae, Athlete’s Foot, Cracked heals, Splits and cracks, Fungal nail infections, Cold sores, Insect bites
The handbag one. Or that’s what I decide it was best for. Tea Tree and Lemon Tea Tree are naturally antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal, and it smells really fresh and uplifting too. I always like to have a balm in my handbag as it works as a multi-tasking lip balm, hand salve and dry skin soother as well as taming fizzy hair on the go, so to have one that does all this and fights germs when out and about (and therefore not always able to wash your hands) is a no-brainer. I had one panic moment when my toddler had been going through my bag when we were in a clothes shop and I thought she’d lost it, but luckily it was found safely in her lunchbox along with a hairband and a couple of Euro coins, as you do.
INGREDIENTS; Sunflower Oil, Calendula Oil, Hypericum Oil, Beeswax, Lemon Tea Tree Oil, Tea Tree Oil, Vitamin E, Rosemary Extract
May help with; Cold hands & feet, Raynauds symptoms, Athritic stiffness, Stiff muscles, Cramp
As someone who does quite high intensity exercise this was wonderful on my aching muscles. Managed to persuade hubby to give me a shoulder rub a couple of times but massaging it into tight muscles myself was still soothing relief. I also happened to get a nasty cold while I had the pot (I’ve run out now, a good sign I think!), and it was lovely applied to temples upper back and chest to decongest and soothe what was a nasty persistent headache.
INGREDIENTS; Sunflower oil, Calendula macerate, St Johns wort, Beeswax, Safflower, Black Pepper, Cinnamon, Lemon, Rosemary, Sandalwood, Vitamin E
May help with; Brightening the complexion, Minimising pores, Reducing redness, Balancing oily & dry patches, Minimising scars, Eczema, Reducing fine lines & wrinkles, Rosacea
I have a little ritual a couple of times a week – instead of my usual skincare routine I do a face scrub, face mask, then apply a rich balm or oil overnight as a treatment. Ever heard your Mum or Grandma swear by Vaseline? Well that’s made of yucky, oil clogging mineral oils, but it’s the same principal of using something really rich and protective overnight to seal in moisture. Rose oil is excellent for skin, especially for its rejuvenating, balancing and anti-ageing properties (hence it’s found frequently in skincare). I delegated this balm to this task and it fitted the bill perfectly – being nourishing but not sticky or greasy. Dry or ageing skins would definitely benefit from use this every night as a moisturiser, and even during the day, though it might be too heavy for really oily skin (I’d recommend the Lavender & Chamomile one instead, for blemishes). It also makes a fantastic hair serum and leave in conditioner, for the record, something I can’t live without with my long, thick, dry hair.
INGREDIENTS; Argan Oil, Rosehip Seed Oil, Safflower Seed Oil, Sunflower Oil, Bees Wax, Rose Oil, Rosemary Extract, Vitamin E
May help with; Eczema, Rosacea, Psoriasis, Burns, Sleeplessness, Headaches, Bites & stings
The first thing that comes to mind with lavender and chamomile is relaxation, and yes this is the one you want to keep by your bed to apply to lips, hands, temples etc. when you climb into bed. But they’re also great oils for spot prone and sensitive skins, and lavender is excellent for burns, so another in the kitchen for cooking accidents could be useful if you’re as accident prone as me.
INGREDIENTS; Calendula macerate, St Johns wort, Sunflower oil, Beeswax, Lavender oil, Chamomile oil, Rosemary water, Vitamin E
I didn’t try this balm but I definitely approve of using as natural products as possible on baby skin which is easily prone to irritation. It’s basically a very mild version of the Lavender & Chamomile balm which makes it suitable for people with sensitive skin. Sore, red noses from colds the sore chin that babies get from dibbling when teething would really benefit from a soothing balm like this. Oh and since they’re not a thick white paste like a well known nappy barrier cream, should little one indulge in their given right to find the pot and spread it everywhere, it won’t be nearly such a pain to clear up!
Nice baby products make a lovely gift for a new Mum. I used to make baby hampers for friends and though I don’t do that much these days this is certainly something I would buy new-Mum friends and family in future.
INGREDIENTS; Calendula macerate, St Johns wort, Sunflower oil, Lavender oil, Chamomile oil, Rosemary water, Vitamin E
Great products don’t go unrecognised for long. So far awards Niki has collected include:
The Original, Lavender & Chamomile, Warming & Baby balms are £4.99 for 10ml (handbag or lipbalm size), 50ml is £9.99, and 100ml £18.46, with the Rose one coming in at £5.99 for 10ml, £11.99 for 25ml, or £19.99 50ml.
There’s also a gift set of 4 10ml balms at £19.99 which was actually what I got, and it turned out to be pretty much the perfect ratio for all my uses, and is also a great idea if you’re not sure which balm you’ll like best.
There are now also candles made of soy wax (which is much less toxic than paraffin) which come in Lavender & Rose, Warming, and Original (like the balm), which are beautifully presented and would make a really special Christmas gift (or for yourself, just because!), or to brighten up your bathroom or bedroom. I frequently use scented candles in the kitchen to get rid of cooking odours, as I wouldn’t want to be spraying chemical air fresheners around food.
To find out more and get some balms for yourself visit www.nikisbalms.co.uk
PLUS to get a 20% discount enter the code 20GIFT14 at the checkout!