Sunday, November 30, 2014

African Botanics Marula Intense Repair Balm Review | Friends & Family Event 20% Off Through December 8

Press Sample (Unaffiliated Links)

It is safe to say that winter has arrived, and the extreme differences between the heated indoor spaces and the freezing outdoor spaces wreak havoc on the skin.  These shifting weather conditions require the fine-tuning of one's skincare regimen, and this often means switching to a richer moisturizer. I have noticed that my combination skin has been far more prone to dehydration as well as becoming somewhat dry on the surface, and while I continue to use my favorite beauty oils– both day and night– I needed to switch my lighter creams and lotions for a more substantial moisturizer. Rather than choosing a traditional cream or moisturizer I decided to take an entirely different approach, and that is what led me to using the African Botanics Marula Intense Repair Balm as my moisturizer. This may sound rather extreme, but this nutrient-rich balm is ultra-healing and very moisturizing. It is neither greasy, nor is it too thick once it is warmed up and worked into the skin. 

After applying my face oil to slightly damp freshly cleansed skin, I simply warm a small amount of the Marula Intense Repair Balm between my hands and then massage it into my face, neck and décolleté. When a small amount is used it sinks into the skin quickly, but if you are more liberal in your application it will require a bit more time to absorb. I was concerned that my combination skin might breakout using a healing balm as a moisturizer, but I was delighted to see that my skin remained blemish-free. In fact, my skin became more hydrated, moisturized, and balanced when using this balm on my face. Furthermore, my skin was velvety soft, supple, firm, and radiant. The results are unlike anything that I have experienced– particularly when paired with a face oil. I love using it with either the African Botanics Neroli Infused Marula Oil (reviewed here) or African Botanics Pure Marula Oil (reviewed here), but I have also tried it with other face oils and the results have been consistently impressive.

If you have dry skin you would likely want to use it less sparingly than I do, and I do think that you will find the results quite impressive. 

It not only feels divine on the skin, but it also has a pleasant and warm slightly sweet scent that makes using it an even more luxurious experience. However, the scent is light and fades very quickly– therefore it shouldn't be an issue for people who prefer no aroma.
African Botanics Marula Intense Skin Repair Balm is a nutrient-rich, reparative and soothing beauty balm that is ideal for all skin types. It effectively treats dehydrated skin, and is perfect for skin that is exposed to dry climates and harsh winter months. This healing balm is, "enhanced with Pure Marula Oil, Baobab, Shea Butter, Alpine Rose Plant Stem Cells and Snow Crocus Bulb that boost epidermal regeneration, reduces inflammation and redness. Rejuvenates skin texture and renews the skin’s resilience and firmness."

African Botanics further asserts that it, "contains mega doses of many indigenous healing botanicals wild-harvested in the the Cape Floral Kingdom in South Africa. Increases circulation to help speed up the healing process of the skin. Tightens the connective tissue and creates a moisture barrier. Moisturizes, protects, calms dry and sensitive skin, relieves discomfort and itchiness. Soothes cuts, burns, dermatitis and eczema while simultaneously providing a protective barrier from outside elements."

Product Claims:
  • Supplies mega dose of essential healing nutrients.
  • Promotes intense hydration.Protects, acts as a skin barrier.
  • Relieves discomfort & itchiness.
  • Moisturizes & calms dry & sensitive skin.
  • Heals cuts, burns, dermatitis, eczema & sensitive skin.
  • Leaves sensitive skin comforted and hydrated.
  • Softens the look of lines and wrinkles.
  • Restore skin's youthful glow.
There is no question that this is a highly effective multipurpose balm that can be used from head to toe, and it should also be noted that it does an extraordinary job healing dry chapped lips. The healing and soothing ingredients make this balm especially effective in treating sensitive and reactive skin, and inflamed skin prone to redness, blotchiness and inflammation. African Botanics suggests that it treats dull, dry and dehydrated skin, aging skin, and under-nourished skin. They also assert that frequent travelers will benefit from its use, as will those with damaged skin. Furthermore, stressed skin that has been exposed to UV rays, snow, wind and pollution will benefit from its healing and protective properties. It also has the added benefit of radically reducing the appearance of scars with repeated use.
Attributes of Select Individual Ingredients:

Marula Oil: "Cold pressed, weightless, anti-aging botanical oil sourced from the remote pristine areas of South Africa's Marula Belt. Concentrated with powerful antioxidants, vitamins C + E that help cells renew and resist damage. Exceptionally high in Essential Fatty Acids (Omega 9 & Omega 6) that deeply hydrate skin and reduce redness while protecting against the elements. Softens the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, increases skin elasticity, plumps and revitalizes skin.:

Alpine Rose Plant Stem Cells: "Derived from the stem cells of rare Swiss Alpine Rose leaves. When incorporated into skincare products, studies demonstrate its ability to repair and delay aging. It is also shown to have anti-wrinkle effects."

Snow Crocus Bulb and Burn Jelly Plant Extracts: "Enhance the synthesis of collagen and elastin while benefiting wound healing."

Cape Camomile Extract: "This South African wild-harvested relative of chamomile is rich in therapeutic compounds. Reduces skin inflammation. Calms & soothes damaged skin. Eases rashes. Heals skin."

Helichrysum: "Stimulates new cell growth. Heals acne & surgical scars. Anti-Inflammatory."

Shea Butter: "High fatty acid content improves skin elasticity & alleviates dryness."

Calendula: "Repairs skin on cellular level. Heals wounds & reduces inflammation. Promotes circulation."

Bulbinella: "a strong antioxidant, stimulates the formation of lipids & proteins for healthy skin. Provides cell renewal. Heals sensitive & inflamed skin."

Melissa Officinalis: "has been shown to produce a soothing and calming effect on the skin."

Aloe Vera: "Rich in minerals, amino acids, lipids, enzymes and polysaccharides – chains of linked sugar molecules. Stimulates skin healing, boosts collagen & elastin synthesis."

Green Rooibos Tea Extract: "wild harvested in a small area in South Afrcia – the Cederberg region – a powerful antioxidant. High in polyphenols and rich in minerals. Contains natural Alphahydroxy Acids (AHA) which smooth and refine skin. Slows down aging process. Strengthens the skin’s outer layer. Evens pigmentation and reduces sunspots and blotchiness. Aids in tissue regeneration. Helps soothe & calm irritations such as itchy skin, sunburns, eczema, or acne."

Full List of Ingredients: Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Acacia Decurrens/Jojoba/ Sunflower Seed Wax/Polyglyceryl-3 Esters, Capric/Caprylic Triglyceride, Glyceryl Stearate, Isoamyl Laurate, Sclerocarya Birrea (Marula) Seed Oil**, Adansonia Digitata (Baobab) Seed Oil, Citrullus Lanatus (Watermelon) Seed Oil, Bulbine Frutescens (Burn Jelly Plant) Extract, Aloe Ferox (Aloe Leaf) Extract, Asparlathus Linearis (Green Rooibos) Extract, Rhododendron Ferrugineum Leaf Cell Culture Extract, Isomalt, Lecithin, Sodium Benzoate, Lactic Acid, Crocus Crysanthus (Snow Crocus) Bulb Extract, Acacia Senegal Gum, Eriocephalus punctulatus (Chamomile Cape) Essential Oil, Melissa Officinalis (Melissa) Essenial Oil, Citrus Aurantium (Neroli) Essential Oil, Cananga Odorata (Ylang-Ylang) Essential Oil, Helichrysum Splendidum (Helichrysum) Essential Oil, Calendula Officianalis (Calendula) Oil, Tocopherol Acetate, Sodium Phytate, Benzyl Cinnamate*, Benzyl Salicylate*, Cinnamyl Alcohol*, Citral*, Citronellol*, Coumarin*, Eugenol*, Farnesol*, Geraniol*, Isoeugenol*, Limonene*, Linalool*. *Constituents of natural essential oils. **Organic. 

Formulated without mineral oil, silicone, synthetic fragrances, parabens, PEGs, PPGs, DEA, TEA, urea or phthalates.
Suggested use: "For deep hydration, revitalization and cell renewal, warm a small amount of balm in the palm of your hand and massage onto clean skin, allow to absorb. Reapply for added moisture and protection. For best results, apply to damp skin, AM and PM to restore skin’s suppleness and radiance. If desired, Intense Skin Repair Balm can also be used as a facial mask 2 - 3 times a week."
Overall Assessment: This is definitely a great multipurpose healing balm to have on hand for use all year long, but it also serves as a remarkably effective facial moisturizer that restores vitality and hydration to dry and dehydrated skin. When the weather warms up, I will likely switch back to a lighter moisturizer and will use this wherever and whenever it is needed. However, if you have dry, red or traumatized skin this might be your perfect solution for a daily moisturizer. It also serves as one of the most extraordinary lip balms that I have tried. Many so-called multipurpose products do lots of things, but none of them terribly well. However, in the case of the Marula Intense Repair Balm it does an exceptional job at treating so many concerns and conditions. It is such a potent and effective balm that it has become a loved staple in my household. I am thoroughly impressed. A+
$55.00 for 1.7 fl oz. from African Botanics. 20% Off Friends & Family Event.  Use Code: thankyou20 November 28 through December 8, 2014.

Space NK should have this in their stores, but neither they nor the e-tailers who stock African Botanics have it on their websites yet. This is not the same product as their Marula Intense Skin Repair Body Balm, which is also amazing, but the formula differs.

Press Sample. All views expressed are categorically my own (Unaffiliated Links).
Copyright © 2014 All Rights Reserved.


  1. I was so close to buying this. Then I got to the screen where it said $9.95 for shipping. Really, for 1.7 oz that is extreme!

    1. Oh no, that's such a bummer! I think that you would really love this– especially paired with your Neroli Infused Marula Oil! I noticed that they are offering free shipping, but you have to spend $200.00– which is great if you are planning a larger order, but not if you are only get this.

  2. This sounds really nice. Good to see it doesn't include mineral oil! <3 You always have such interesting things to review!

    1. It an amazing product from a really fantastic line! I sere with you that it's good that they don't use mineral oil! Thanks, sweetie! That's a once thing to say. <3

  3. Replies
    1. It's definitely a super impressive beauty balm, Destany!

  4. This sounds so good... I always want to try everything you blog!

    1. Hi Brooke! Thank you, that is such a nice thing to say! I feel exactly the same way about your blog! This is definitely an amazing multipurpose balm of the highest possible quality!

  5. I love that this perfect for sensitive skin and is mineral oil free. (I have eczema so this would be right up my alley).

    1. Hi Norah, This is an amazing product, and I suspect that it would really work wonders on your eczema. It my magical healing balm, and now that I have tried it I will not be without it!

  6. Replies
    1. It really is, and it is so effective! I am completely obsessed with it, and I mean COMPLETELY! :-)

  7. This sounds like a really nice product and I think it would be great for my sensitive skin. So many products cause my eczema to go crazy and I think I could make use of this.

    1. Hi Honey, It would be amazing for your sensitive skin! This is so healing and the ingredients are the highest quality. I think that it would really work wonders on your eczema! :-)

  8. just this morning, i decided that while i love using oils for moisturizing, as winter starts to move in, they just aren't enough. and i thought to myself, i wonder if there is an oil based moisturizer that is richer that just the african botanics neroli marula oil? and then i thought, i should check lola's page! and low and behold i found this! it looks perfect! and there is a sale!!! i just submitted my order.

    thank you so much for the detailed review, as always! i love having you as a source :)

    1. Hi Erin! WOW, talk about synchronicity! We are really on the same page! I was feeling precisely the same way, and as I was looking through my stash I decided that I was going to really try this on my face. When I last saw the owner, Julia, she said that I should give it a try on my face during the winter to see how it works for my combination skin, and it is really dreamy! You can layer it right over your Neroli Marula Oil, but I would definitely suggest using it sparingly and warming it up first. I also use it as a lip balm and it is just stupendous in that capacity. It's basically a magic potion that I am utterly obsessed with! I am so thrilled that you bought it! Please let me know what you think about it.

      Thank you for your really kind words, and for thinking to come here first– you have no idea how touched I am by that. I absolutely love interacting with you, and am so happy that you find my reviews helpful! Have a lovely weekend! :)

  9. well, it is months later, and i had every intention of following up sooner. but better now then never. i have been using this balm, almost daily, on my face since mid-december. my biggest quibble was that they took ages (or so it seems in the days of amazon prime, free two day shipping) to get the product out to me. once i had it, i was sold.

    it is an intense moisturizer, but it doesn't feel greasy. there are little granules of something in there that melt as i apply it to my face. i focus on my cheeks, since especially in the winter i get red cheeks a lot, with the cold and wind. this is so soothing. and in combination with the neroli infused marula oil, it really locks in the moisture. i use it day and night, and as long as i wait just a little bit before applying make up, this does not interfere at all with that.

    i also have found that it is great on very chapped lips. and if i have a blemish that is red and irritated, this helps the healing process move right along.

    i do not know how long i will keep using it as the weather shifts more into spring and summer. if you had asked me in december, i would have said that i would use it only in the winter. but honestly, it is getting warmer and warmer, and my skin still seems to love this balm. so perhaps i will be a year round user.

    because it is so intense, a very little goes a long way. i continue to be incredibly impressed with the value for the quantity that you get from african botantics products. not to mention the value for the quality. thank you again for bringing this brand to my attention.

    i believe i am going to take yet another look at your reviews of the other products from this company. perhaps i need something else in my routine ;)

    1. Hi Erin! I am so thrilled that you feel as you do about their Balm! I completely agree with your thoughtful and thorough assessment!

      I am not in the least bit surprised that your skin is loving the Bam, and continues to as the weather warms up. I think the key, as you have noted, is to use it very sparingly. I also think that layering it with their Neroli Infused Marula Oil is also highly effective. Plus, if you apply it to warm and slightly damp freshly cleansed face_ then it sinks in faster, and you can use even less! It does make an amazing lip balm all year long as well.

      I would definitely say that their other products are well worth trying, and they are coming out with new products that I will review once I receive them (and have used them for a while).

      It's too bad that it took Amazon Prime so long to get your order to you though. There rare numerous other places to purchase their products, in the event that you don't want to shop though Amazon again.

      I can't tell you how happy it makes me that you are loving the African Botanics that you have– it really is an extraordinary line with extraordinary products.You are quite right about the value as well– it is rare to be able to purchase luxury products in larger quantities, and with better prices than their competitors! :-)


I love reading all of your comments and interacting with you- so please do not hesitate to share your thoughts, and to ask questions. Remember that what you have to say is of interest to all of us! Always feel free to email me directly as well. SPAM and advertising links will not be published.

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