While it is important and good to care about what goes in your mouth, it is also imperative to pay attention to what goes on your skin. If we are serious about our health, then our wellness journey is incomplete unless it is holistic. What does this mean? This means that we care and embrace all aspects of our lifestyle with conscious awareness. Our food choices, our sleep quality, our home cleaning products, our personal care products, and even our clothing all increase or decrease the number of toxins and chemicals that can harm our health in our lives.
On my own journey of natural and holistic living, I became very aware of my personal care habits early on, given how our skin is impacted by everything we put on it and absorbs so much of what we put on it. While I researched and found various natural personal care options of high quality, I came to a big conclusion where that whole area is concerned. This being that less is more, and no matter how good the product may be, the fewer products we use of any kind, the better. Thus, the first step in approaching personal care products from an optimally healthy way is to reduce the number of products used. The second step is to find high-quality products that are worthy of going on your skin and being absorbed by your body.
One of these high-quality skincare lines that I have learned about is the Annmarie Gianni skincare line, which is described as organic, natural and wild-crafted. It carries a full spectrum of face and skin care products where the ingredients are real and easy to understand, and one is not left researching numerous chemical names and risky ingredients that are present in conventional products.
I am excited to share about this option with others because all of my life, I have seen family and friends walking into high-end department stores and spending so much money on cleverly-marketed skincare products that are both costly and completely unhealthy. Many of us also believe that if it carries a certain price tag, a certain brand name, or is featured on some prominent advertising channel, it will somehow make our skin, and maybe even our life better, when the opposite is true.
Having seen and examined many of these conventional brand products myself, from Clinique and Elizabeth Arden to Orlane and Vichy, with almost everything in between, I found that they were full of chemicals, many of which we know today are linked with various harmful effects. Even worse were the ones that tried to “hide” behind a plant, organic, or herbal label, making them sound natural or healthy, when in fact, they weren’t. It is one thing to pay a high price for a product that you can actually feel safe about using and one that uses high-quality natural and effective skincare ingredients. However, it makes no sense to pay a high price for a product that will increase the toxic load in our body and impact our health negatively.
A New Natural and Holistic Skincare Line is Born
In 2010, health advocate Annmarie Giannie released her own natural, organic, and wildcrafted skincare line. As part of this review, I will share my experiences with several of her products. Before continuing with this review, I invite you to know more about Annmarie Gianni in the video interview I had the pleasure of doing with her.
This collection started as Annmarie Gianni skincare and over the years, has evolved to be Annmarie products that feature face, body, and outdoor care, as well as some other products. Annmarie Gianni created it with an emphasis on providing truly natural personal care, being totally chemical-free. Her products come from organic and wild-crafted sources, feature ingredients that are all listed on the label, and easy to understand. The collection features numerous items to cater pretty much to everyone’s skincare needs. It includes all sorts of facial oils to moisturize, masks, a serum, cleanser, scrub, and toner. The products come in MIRON violet-glass bottles or jars, which do not allow visible light to pass through. This helps prevent the products from breaking down in unfavorable ways, and the packaging is recyclable or reusable after the products are finished.
The Annmarie Gianni skincare line caters to all sexes, and contrary to popular belief, we do not need separately labeled bottles - one for women’s skincare and another for men’s skincare. For the most part, that is just a marketing ploy to cater better to each sex. If you are interested in high-quality skincare products, this may be a great option for those who desire a high-quality option with impressive ingredients.
Annmarie Gianni Aloe-Herb Cleanser Review (March 14, 2011)
Ingredients: Organic Aloe Vera Juice infused with herbs: (lavender flowers, calendula flowers, life everlasting flowers, hyssop, lemon balm, neem leaf, olive leaf, Plantago leaf), Organic Coconut Oil, Cocoglucoside, Organic Vegetable Glycerine, Aspen Bark Extract, Organic Ruby Grapefruit Oil, Organic Lemon Oil, Organic Green Mandarin Oil, Xanthan Gum, Organic Rosemary Oleoresin
I really enjoyed using this cleanser for many reasons. The ingredient list was very clear and easily recognizable, without any long or unknown chemical names. The ingredients all seem to be plant-derived, without any obvious hazardous byproducts, artificial preservatives, fragrances, or other chemical additions. Being aloe-based with various plant oils, it is great for our skin.
I used a little of the cleanser in the palm of my hand and gently rubbed it all over my face in the evenings. The product does not contain foam, which is nice and expected, seeing that it is not infused with any chemical lathering agents. It worked great at removing my natural make-up and leaving my skin feeling fresh and clean. The cleanser is creamy-white and has a silky cream consistency. The scent is gentle, not overpowering, lemony, and very pleasant.
Annmarie Gianni Anti-Aging Serum (March 17, 2011)
Ingredients: Organic Rose Distillate, Organic Aloe Vera Gel, Organic Rose Distillate & Vegetable Glycerin (Herb Extract of Gotu kola leaves, Gingko leaves, Rosemary leaves, Calendula flowers, Comfrey root, Fennel seed), Rhodiola root, Life Everlasting flowers, Milk thistle seed, Plantain leaves, Rooibos, Shavegrass, Nettle leaves, Amla berries, Seabuckthorn berries, Olive-derived Sodium hyaluronate, Organic Edelweiss Extract, Organic Buddleja Davidii Extract, Organic Flax Seed Extract, Organic Sunflower Seed Extract, Organic Red Raspberry Seed Extract, Organic Chia Seed Oil, Organic Carrot Seed Oil, Organic Tamanu Oil, Organic Rose Hip Seed Oil Extract, Vitamin E Tocopherols (non-GMO), Aspen Bark Extract, Essential Oils of Rose Absolute, Frankincense, Sweet Myrrh, Vetiver, Jasmine sambac, Organic Rosemary Leaf Extract, Xanthan gum
This product had a delicate and watery, rather than oily, consistency. It is opaque white in color and has a very subtle aroma. Upon using it, my skin appeared smooth and soft. It is a pricey product; however, only a minimal amount is needed to get really nice results. The scent itself has a most delicate rose aroma, and I enjoyed using it very much.
Annmarie Gianni Anti-Aging Facial Oil (March 17, 2011)
Ingredients: Organic Jojoba Oil infused with wild-crafted & organic herbs (Milk thistle seed, Rosemary leaves, Green tea leaves, Rooibos, Life Everlasting flowers, Licorice root, Gingko leaves, Ginseng leaves, Gotu kola leaves, Calendula flowers, Lavender flowers, Hibiscus flowers, Echinacea purpurea, Plantain leaves, Shavegrass, Chamomile flowers, Malva flowers), Organic Oleic Sunflower oil, Hempseed oil, Organic Rosehip Seed Oil, Organic Red raspberry seed oil, Organic Cranberry seed oil, Organic Blueberry seed oil, Chia seed oil, Organic Carrot seed oil, Organic Broccoli seed oil, Organic Pumpkin seed oil, Organic Pomegranate seed oil, Organic Black Cumin seed oil, Organic Acai Berry oil, Wild-crafted Buriti fruit oil, Organic Seabuckthornberry oil, Vitamin E tocopherols (non-GMO), Essential Oils of Sandalwood, Jasmine sambac, Vetiver, Rose absolute, Sweet Fennel, Frankincense
The anti-aging facial oil was very similar to the Herbal facial oil that I will talk about below. It is excellent at moisturizing the skin and absorbs really fast and really well. The oil left my face soft and moisturized without any oily residue or unnatural shine. Like the herbal facial oil, I found the scent to be stronger initially than I am used to or would personally desire in a product. However, like the other oil, the scent does calm down significantly once it is applied, so one does not have to worry they are leaving a fragrance trail wherever they go. As for the fragrance itself, like the other oil, it is similar in terms of its strong floral tones with an emphasis on jasmine coming through the most.
Annmarie Gianni Herbal Facial Oil Review (March 20, 2011)
Ingredients for Natural & Combination Skin Oil: Organic or wildcrafted herb oil [grapeseed, life everlasting, green tea, Gotu kola, rosemary, calendula, lavender, milk thistle, lemon balm, licorice root, rooibos, hibiscus, Rhodiola, ginkgo, plantain, amla, ashwagandha, acai, goji berry, horsetail, comfrey leaves, comfrey root, rose petal, echinacea, ginseng, lotus, Boswellia, blue violet], fractionated coconut oil, organic oleic sunflower oil, organic olive oil, organic aloe vera oil, organic passion fruit oil, organic tamanu oil, organic carrot seed oil, vitamin E tocopherols, organic evening primrose extract, organic seabuckthorn berry extract, organic red raspberry seed oil, organic cranberry seed oil, organic rosehip extract, organic calendula extract, organic buriti fruit oil, organic sandalwood oil, organic jasmine sambac oil, organic bergamot oil, blue chamomile oil, organic rosemary oleoresin.
The Annmarie skincare line includes several kinds of facial oils to suit our different skin and life stage needs. These facial oils offer great natural ingredients that are easy to understand, clearly labeled, and beneficial to nourish our skin and provide protection against microorganisms and the elements. They are easy to work with and absorb very fast. I normally moisturize my face once a day, in the evenings, after thoroughly washing my face. After putting on the herbal facial oil, I was able to put my head on the pillow within minutes, without getting any oily residue on my pillowcase and feeling like everything was really well absorbed. My skin was smooth to the touch and felt really good with this product.
The only challenging part for me in using these facial oils was getting used to the scents. Even though Annmarie’s products do not come with overwhelming scents, I found the facial oils to be the strongest smelling of all the products. The natural & combination skin facial oil had a rich flowery smell, with its strongest note from the jasmine. The oily & acne skin facial oil had a much stronger and much less pleasant scent, perhaps influenced by the very astringent neem oil it contains.
Annmarie Gianni Coconut Face & Body Oil (March 25, 2011)
Ingredients: Organic virgin coconut oil, organic sunflower and grapeseed oils infused with wild-crafted & organic herbs (milk thistle seed, rosemary leaves, green tea leaves, rooibos, life everlasting flowers, licorice root, ginkgo leaves, ginseng leaves), Gotu kola leaves, Calendula flowers, Lavender flowers, Hibiscus flowers, Echinacea purpurea, Plantain leaves, Shavegrass, Chamomile flowers, Malva flowers, Organic aloe vera oil, Organic olive oil, Organic Rice Bran Oil, Vitamin E tocopherols (non-GMO), Essential oils of lavender, elemi, Peru balsam, frankincense
As with Annmarie’s other products, the ingredients are straightforward and plant-based, with no chemicals hiding in between the lines. Using this oil was very enjoyable, and the product works really well at offering moisturizing and nourishing properties. It was easy to apply, and it absorbed really quickly. Only a small amount of this product is required to satisfy the intended purpose. Still, more can be used and generously massaged into the skin for a more luxurious experience, especially on the body. The scent of the oil is also quite delicious and refreshing without being too strong in any way. Given its coconut component, this oil can solidify under cooler temperatures, meaning anything below 24 degrees Celcius or 76 Fahrenheit.
Annmarie Gianni Ayurvedic Facial Scrub (March 29, 2011)
Ingredients: Organic lavender flowers, Organic fenugreek seed, Rhassoul clay, Organic rosemary leaves, Organic lemon balm leaves, Organic shavegrass (horsetail herb), Organic neem leaves, Organic comfrey root, organic lemon peel, Honey powder
Scrubs are a great way to exfoliate our skin. When we remove dead skin cells, it smooths out our skin’s texture and appearance, and my experience was just that with this product. The scrub is meant to be used with Annmarie Gianni’s cleanser. It comes as an olive-brown powder, which looks like finely ground up herbs. I placed about a flat teaspoonful of the powder in the palm of my hand and put about an equal amount of the cleanser to mix it. I found this amount made a good thick paste that I used on my face to get a great exfoliating effect. After working it well into and all over my skin, I rinsed it off with water. My skin was wonderfully silky and smooth after using it. This scrub scent was also enjoyable, as it is very delicate and very different from Annmarie’s other products. It is not a flowery or overwhelming smell of any kind. I found it to be a wonderful earthy-herbal scent with a delicate essence of parsley.
Annmarie Gianni Neroli Toning Mist (March 29, 2011)
Ingredients: Pure organic neroli distillate
Personally, I have not used or required any toners for my face up to this point, so this product provided for a new and different experience. The toner comes in the form of a spray mist and left my face with a cooling effect and a delicate wet feeling. I can see the value of such a product for people who travel a lot and experience that “dried out and tired” feeling of the skin, especially on flights. However, for myself, such a product is neither required nor desired and would only add an unnecessary additional step to my personal care. The neroli hydrosol is from orange blossoms. The scent was fine, but I did not care much for it. Although it comes from orange blossoms, it does not smell like oranges and will most likely be enjoyed by those who are already used to and enjoy the scent of neroli.
Annmarie Gianni Coconut Honey Mask (March 29, 2011)
Ingredients: Raw mountain wildflower honey, organic virgin coconut oil, Beeswax, Organic vanilla powder
This was my most favorite product in the entire Annmarie Gianni skincare line. Annmarie mentions that this product is so natural that it is good enough to eat, and if you like coconuts and honey, you will definitely feel this way. I loved the smell of this product; I just loved it! However, I am also a huge fan of all things coconut. In addition to its health-enhancing properties, I really cannot emphasize how delicious this product smells. It was also wonderful to experience how pure, natural, and simple the ingredients were. This is the kind of skincare we can feel so good about putting on our skin!
Using this product was fun too. Masks are meant to nourish our skin in deep ways and offer various benefits depending on their ingredients. This coconut honey mask is to be left on your face for about 15 minutes, and it provided for a delicious 15 minutes given its delightful scent. Like with the toner, I have not made masks a part of my personal care routine, but I enjoyed this experience. In the end, my skin felt lovely afterward, and this is a product that I can highly recommend for some skin rejuvenation.
Annmarie Gianni Dead Sea Facial Scrub (November 8, 2011)
Ingredients: Dead Sea Mud, Siliceous Earth, Vegetable Glycerin, Organic Lavender Essential Oil, Organic Rosemary Oleoresin
This product is meant to exfoliate the skin, replenish minerals, stimulate circulation, and remove dead skin cells. Although I am not a regular facial scrub user, I really enjoyed this product, like the other facial scrub, which I talked about above. What made this one better and more user-friendly, is that it can be used on its own; no mixing is required, like with the Ayurvedic scrub. This scrub has a very obvious but pleasant lavender scent. I enjoyed it for the most part but those who are sensitive to any kind of fragrance may find it a bit strong. When I put this scrub on my skin, it had the texture of very fine sand. This was a very soothing and gentle scrub for the skin, though it still may be too much for those with sensitive skin. Afterward, my face definitely had a very smooth and clean feeling. There is no oily residue and it washes off very easily too. The product comes as a solid paste and a little goes a long way.
Annmarie Gianni Radiant Skin Silk Lotion (September 26, 2012)
Ingredients: Herb Infusion (Spring Water, Plantain, Rosemary, Gingko, Sencha Green Tea, Calendula, Thyme), Sunflower Oil, Herb infused Oil (Grapeseed Oil, Lavender, Calendula, Chamomile, Helichrysum, Jasmine, Malva, Lemon Balm, Comfrey leaves, Plantain, Rosemary, Gotu Kola, Sencha Green Tea, Rhodiola root), Rice Bran Oil, Veg Glycerin, Sunflower Seed Extract, Plantago Extract, Aspen Bark Extract, Coconut-Palm Wax, Peru Balsam resin, Vitamin E Tocopherols (organic or wildcrafted)
When we nourish our skin from the inside out and avoid harsh, synthetic soaps, body washes, chlorinated water, and other similar skin-damaging items, many of us will find no need for any lotions or moisturizers. However, there are times, especially during dry winters or summers, where a moisturizing lotion can support our skin and may be required. This is where our focus should always be to put the most natural product on our body, as our skin is the biggest organ and capable of absorbing many of the chemicals that are commonly found in personal care products today. Luckily, products such as this lotion can provide us with such an option.
The Radiant Skin Silk lotion is described as “a luxurious blend that will leave your skin feeling hydrated, silky, and smooth. The oils and herbs in this product will penetrate your skin to keep it nourished and protected, leaving you with a wonderful glow.” The best part of this lotion is that there are no alcohols used, no chemical ingredients, and of course, no preservatives of any synthetic or chemical kind. This lotion’s scent was the highlight for me, as it was the most pleasant and delicious-smelling lotion I have ever come across. The scent is a sweet and rich mix of vanilla, cinnamon, and the Peru balsam. I enjoyed using this product as it was easy to put on and very quick to absorb. It definitely had great moisturizing properties thanks to the nourishing sunflower oil and left my skin soft and silky.
In conclusion, there is value in each of these products depending on your personal skincare needs. The best part is that as with all of Annmarie Gianni’s other products, the ingredients do not hide any synthetic chemicals. All of the ingredients are easy to understand and come from beneficial plant sources.