Lancome Exfoliant Fraichelle
The smell: Opening the bottle, we were overwhelmed with a pungent floral scent that reminded us a little too much of grandma’s house. We were expecting a bit more subtlety from the Lancome brand.
The packaging: The bottle’s pretty plain and, while it gives the product a bit of mystery, the French blurb does seem designed to distract from the fact that it’s all a bit cheap.
The feel: It’s soapy and silky smooth, more like lotion than an exfoliant. While we felt clean, we didn’t feel like it had effectively brushed off our old skin.
Available at Paris Gallery, The Dubai Mall (04 330 8289). Dhs145
Jo Malone Vitamin E Body Scrub
The smell: There’s just a bit too much vanilla going on here. A billowing, nauseating waft hit our noses when we opened the jar. It was reminiscent of the perfume worn by secondary school girls.
The packaging: Jo Malone knows a thing or two about presentation. We love the sleek black canister, and the gold embossed label. The whole thing is very London-chic.
The feel: Alas, the smell kind of destroyed the experience for us. The scrub itself was decadent and had a wonderful feel on the body, but we just couldn’t stand the after-effect of smelling like a cheap vanilla candle.
Available on jomalone.co.uk. Dhs262.50
Clinique Sparkle Skin
The smell: This refreshingly fragrance-free product reminds us of a fresh breeze (something we rarely experience in Dubai). It’s definitely a winner on this front.
The packaging: The bottle itself is pretty standard, but the frothy looking product inside looks tantalisingly cleansing under the plastic.
The feel: With name like ‘Sparkle,’ we had high hopes for this scrub, but it was surprisingly lacklustre. After using it, our skin, sadly, felt no different.
Available at Available at Paris Gallery, The Dubai Mall (04 330 8289) or www.clinique.com. Dhs155
Bliss Blood Orange White Pepper Sugar Scrub
The smell: The scent is thankfully that of fresh fruit, and not synthetic citrus, as is too often the case. It’s so realistic that it makes us hungry.
The packaging: The jar is wrapped in the spa’s signature blue label, which unfortunately started peeling within the first week of use.
The feel: This foamy body polish left us feeling utterly cleansed, smooth and fresh, yet without the residue of some of the other options.
Available at www.blissworld.com. Dhs126
St. Ives Mineral Therapy Body Polish
The smell: This also has a strong vanilla scent, though thankfully it doesn’t cling to the skin after use the way other products might.
The packaging: It may be inexpensive, but looks rather swanky, if low-key. Plus the fact it’s called ‘mineral therapy’ adds an air of sophistication.
The feel: This drugstore standby proves you don’t have to pay big bucks for a good product. The buttery smooth consistency – thanks to extra-fine granules and natural ingredients such as sunflower oil – makes it feel more like a polish than an intense scrub.
Available at Boots, various locations. Dhs35
Fresh Brown Sugar Body Polish
The smell: It reminds us of a freshly baked dessert. The syrupy brown sugar scent is dotted with hints of lemon. Absolutely divine.
The packaging: We like the fact that there are no messy labels to deal with. Instead, it’s a simple canister with the text printed directly on it. It’s simple and classy.
The feel: Large granules make for an intense yet remarkably nonabrasive scrub, and the thick, molasses-like consistency leaves a moisturising residue afterwards that, though it takes getting used to, makes for remarkably soft skin afterwards.
Available on www.fresh.com. Dhs227.50