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Welcome, Great Pumpkin! — Greet The Body Shop’s New Vanilla Pumpkin Collection






When it comes to fall flavors and aromas, there seems to be a clear line drawn in the sand — or, perhaps more fittingly, in the the hay-covered ground of a pumpkin patch. On one side, there are those who absolutely detest all things that taste and smell like cinnamon roasted nuts, caramel apple, and pumpkin spice and, on the other, those who count down the days until they can order a Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte and munch on White Pumpkin Pie M&Ms. My husband, for the record, falls into the former category: during a recent trip to the supermarket, he scoffed at the sight of boxes upon boxes of Pumpkin Spice Twinkies, labeling the invention a “crime against humanity” (yes, he has a flair for the dramatic when it comes to his favorite snacks). I, on the other hand, seem to figure among the rare few who play hopscotch right along that divide. On the one hand, I fail to comprehend the allure of Pumpkin Spice Oreos, Pumpkin Pie Spice Pringles, and Chobani Pumpkin Spice Greek yogurt but, then again, I must admit that the Pepperidge Farm Pumpkin Cheesecake cookies I’ve spotted at HEB sound pretty yummy and I could see myself getting down with some Thomas Pumpkin Spice bagels. Yes, it’s true that the market is oversaturated with pumpkin-flavored foods and pumpkin-scented candles and lotions around this time of year, but that doesn’t mean you should develop an Eeyore-like gloom-and-doom attitude. What would Linus Van Pelt say?

If there’s a Great Pumpkin that rose out of the most sincere pumpkin patch this year, then it might just be The Body Shop‘s Vanilla Pumpkin collection, a wonder that rose into the air to bring us all smooth and supple skin and swathe it with a mouth-watering fragrance (and, after all, these are the adult versions of bags filled with toys and treats). On an aromatic level, the products in the collection have a sweet scent that contains the most subtle hints of pumpkin — in fact, the predominant aromatic notes are vanilla, caramel, and honey, so that the pumpkin element is remarkably understated. The fragrance itself is synthetic and, while some might view this as a negative factor, from a purely sensory perspective, the aromatic composition actually works. That said, the products do contain honey, which has antibacterial and humectant properties, making it a skin-soothing wonder, and Madagascar vanilla extract, which has antioxidants with anti-aging benefits as well as anti-inflammatory properties.

You can start to give your shower an autumn reboot with The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin Shower Gel ($6 at TheBodyShop.com), a creamy shower gel that creates a rich lather and combines pumpkin, vanilla, hazelnut, caramel, and maple syrup aromas. The shower gel is pleasant and I didn’t find it to be drying, but it does contain sodium laureth sulfate so, if you’ve had any sensitivities to this ingredient, take heed.

For a truly indulgent treat, your best bet is The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin Body Butter ($12.60 at TheBodyShop.com), which is a nutrient-dense moisturizer that’s absorbed incredibly quickly by thirsty skin. The body butter contains: shea butter, which is rich in fatty acids that replenish and soothe the skin, and which melts at body temperature, ensuring rapid absorption; cocoa butter, which contains fatty acids that heal dry and chapped skin, as well as polyphenols that promote collagen production and help the skin retain its elasticity; sesame seed oil, which contains antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties thanks to its concentration of linoleic and palmitic acids and which features B complex, E, and D vitamins that reduce scars and rashes, along with antioxidants like sesamol that prevent skin cell oxidation; soybean oil, a great source of linoleic acid and B, E, and K vitamins, and hence a great way to protect the skin against UV rays, to clear up acne, and to maintain an ideal moisture balance; Madagascar vanilla extract; and babassu seed oil, which is rife with vitamin E and phytosterols that protect the skin’s collagen. The body butter leaves skin radiant, soft, hydrated, and firm, and it smells like a sweet treat — without overdoing it and leaving you feeling like a walking slice of pumpkin pie.

Last, we have The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin Hand Cream ($4.80 at TheBodyShop.com), which is bringing some much-needed relief to my dry and chapped hands at the moment. This hand cream is delightfully non-greasy, and my hands and cuticles drink it up faster than my 11-month-old Chiweenie laps up his Starbucks Puppuccino (and that’s saying a LOT!).

The Great Pumpkin has arisen!

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