L'Occitane Almond Velvet Balm Review | Whipped almondy goodness

Just J: L'Occitane Almond Velvet Balm review

Ever since I went on my last Seattle shopping trip where I encountered heaven in a jar (a.k.a the Burt's Bees almond hand cream) I've been obsessed with anything almond scented. To me, that comforting, thick smell of nutty almond epitomizes luxury and relaxation to me. I could smell almond and lemon scented things forever, so when I received the L'Occitane Almond Velvet Balm, I was over the moon. An almond scented body balm? YES PLZZ.

The Product
L'Occitane has been doing almond scented products since forever, so rest assured that they know what they're doing. This whipped body lotion takes a new twist on almonds by capturing the essence of the almond tree for a scent that is a lovely mix of powdery flowers and rich almonds. Besides providing moisture, this lotion is designed to also combat signs of aging: flakiness, saggy skin tone and fine lines.

The Guts
This product primarily contains:
  • Shea butter - derived from the shea nut, this is a powerful moisturizer, antioxidant and natural sunblock
  • Glycerin - a common moisturizer
  • Coco-caprylate - a plant-based emollient
  • Octyldodecyl myristate - an emollient that captures moisture in skin
Other ingredients of note are sweet almond oil, sweet almond seed extract (moisturizing).

Just J: L'Occitane Almond Velvet Balm review

Price & Packaging
A 200 ml jar retails for $62. The price is certainly pricey for a product that you use up as quickly as a body lotion, so I'm not sure I'd repurchase just based on the price alone. Also, since the packaging is in a glass jar, I tend to use it up faster as I can't myself from scooping out large amounts of product versus when I use a pump format. Bet you never thought I'd ever say I preferred a pump format before! In fact, my order of preference for lotion packaging is squeeze tube > pump > jar.  Sadly, I've been using this lotion for about a month or so and I'm already scraping the bottom of the jar!

My favourite and least favourite thing about this lotion is its whipped, mousse-like texture. It's quite unlike most lotions which lean more watery. With this type of texture though, I found the Almond Velvet Balm a little hard to spread. It also takes a minute to absorb once applied, but that could be due to the fact that I like to spread a good layer on my winter skin. Once applied, my skin feels silky smooth and just slightly tacky. I quite liked this balm and the shea butter in it does a fine job moisturizing, but it's lacking the thickness that I enjoy in a winter lotion. I'd probably relegate this one for summer only when its light texture would be more welcome.

Just J: L'Occitane Almond Velvet Balm review

Level of Almondy-ness
Considering it's called the Almond Velvet Balm, I was expecting pretty high levels of almond scent, but the actual scent is much more flowery than nutty. The Almond Velvet Balm smells just plain pretty and the powderiness makes it smell a tad old-lady, but in a good way, like using an artisanal apothecary product. I've become used to this type of smell from L'Occitane and enjoy it, but if you're used to something more in your face, like lotions from Bath & Body Works, it might be too subtle for you.

Final Verdict
Ditch - as much as I enjoyed this balm and would recommend it for summer, $62 is too much for me to spend on something I use up so fast.

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