It’s been a long journey trying to get my skin back to how it was, it’s still not quite there but trying to heal my moisture barrier has been one of the longest parts of the process. I have dry skin almost everywhere, and although I live for oils as a lot of you know, they, unfortunately, have caused a secondary issue called Milia on my cheeks. It’s a battle of nourishing my skin with all the things it normally loves but staying on top of my exfoliation to ensure decent cell renewal. I had used some products from Bybi a while back but I didn’t re-buy them again as I wrongly put all my eggs in the basket of using as many ~synthetic~ ingredients as possible. Nowadays, I’m more than happy to include “natural/organic” products in my routine too, as long as they’re effective and give me actual results. On top of that, I’m also really keen on, where possible, investing in brands that are ethical and eco-friendly too.
Bybi is an interesting brand for many reasons; beyond their beautiful packaging and inclusive images, they also really and honestly give a damn about where their ingredients come from, who they come from and what we, as consumers, do with their products when we’re finished. A few months ago, I was invited to their Susty Summit where I learned all about why and how we should demand more transparency from brands in order to make more informed decisions about the beauty products we buy. When you look at the ingredients list of a product, it can contain anything from 15 to 50 individual ingredients, which have gone through lots of people and lots of hands before it arrives on your bathroom shelf. The very least we can do is request a brands Modern Slavery Policy to be sure that good ethical practice is in place to make sure it arrived there ethically.
When it comes to ingredients specifically though, Bybi has a few tips to ensure sustainability. They seek out ingredients that grow in abundance and have a short harvesting cycle, i.e a LOT and OFTEN. So 👍🏽 to ingredients like Lavender, and Calendula and Cucumber but we’re super not here for Rosewood oil or Jeju oil, as luxurious they may sound. Exotic ingredients are not always the best choice anyway, they often have to travel from afar and whilst they can be glamorised by fashion magazines as the “next best thing” for your skin, more often than not, the properties that make the ingredient amazing can be found in other ingredients a lot closer to home. Just as a lot of us try to do with our food, we should try to source locally where possible.
Some of you may remember when I mentioned one of my favourite masks from Evolve, where they up-cycle the blueberries from the food industry and use them in their Radiance mask. I am frustrated that this hasn’t caught on more; someone’s trash may be another person’s gold and I strongly feel that as more and more people start to reach for their natural products, brands have a duty to try and source their ingredients as second hand to reduce waste, and ensure the ingredient is used completely as opposed to just the seeds.
A hot topic I see when people discuss not only vegan diet but also now beauty products is Palm Oil. I have definitely been trying to watch my palm oil intake, but it’s difficult as it is in absolutely everything. I was glad to see that Bybi wasn’t saying that we should avoid palm oil altogether. They say that palm itself is a sustainable ingredient, but it’s our overconsumption and unsustainable demand that has caused bad processes to be implemented to fulfil our needs. Eradicating palm oil will not solve the issue, it’s in 50% of food, personal care products and biofuels, in addition to that there are huge communities who rely on palm, and the trade of it. Interestingly, it’s also far more renewable and environmentally less taxing than it’s “replacements” (Soya and coconut oil). We should encourage and push companies to use only sustainable, RSPO certified palm oil in order to shift the industries mindset and stop the use of “dirty” palm.
After we’ve found our magic product with its sustainable ingredient list, we have to also consider what happens to the product when we’re finished with it. The beauty industry has a plastic problem, there’s no doubt about that – and what actually attracted me to Bybi was their biodegradable packaging such as their Sugarcane “plastic” that holds their Babe Balm, Crystal Clear and Smooth & Sooth. What cannot be recycled will at the very least not have a negative impact on our environment as it breaks down. We should all be avoiding microbeads by now, but it’s also a good idea to keep an eye out for other plastic derivatives, Petroleum by-products and certain surfactants.
Now I think after all that, we can agree that Bybi is amazing, they really have their foot on other brands necks when it comes to sustainability, self-auditing and holding themselves accountable. I’ve spoken about their products a lot on my Instagram post and I even have a discount code if you wanna try them out, (DEMI20) and I’ll also highlight my personal favourites below.
Demi’s personal fav 💓
There are many oil cleansers out there on the market, both expensive and cheap – some of you use a simple pot of coconut oil (no comment), some of you source organic grapeseed oil, and some of you may buy overpriced basic oil from a boujie non diverse skincare company that tries to intimidate skincare companies owned by WoC, all tea, all shade. My personal preference is somewhere in the middle, I find oils like coconut are too comedogenic, even if they are being washed off – and I also don’t feel like spending nearly £50 on oil, even if it was branded by Fenty and created by Rihanna’s hands herself. Swipe Clean is a great daily oil cleanser, it removes stubborn makeup quickly, smells beautiful and leaves my skin soft even after I’ve washed it away with my muslin cloth (a must). It contains Moringa and Black Cumin oils which are antibacterial, whilst Hibiscus and Papaya dissolve excess sebum and dead skin cells. Their website says it leaves you with squeaky clean skin but this is not true, squeaky clean is never a good thing, and actually, it leaves my skin soft and hydrated – which is exactly what a good oil cleanser should do. It doesn’t come out too fast, which is perfect for control over how much you use and a little goes a long way. I’ve been using it for a while now and I don’t think I’ve even made a quarter of a dent yet.
I was super lucky and privileged enough to be given a sample of this before it was released. For a long while, I’ve avoided gel cleansers as they are generally better suited to oilier skin types. Being on the drier side of the spectrum, I was a little apprehensive, but my facialist told me to stop using my cream cleansers in order to clear up my congestion. Crystal Clear is a gel to foaming cleanser, that doesn’t strip and really lifts what the oil cleanser couldn’t. I’ve been using it almost every evening (I sometimes alternate with a different cleanser if my skin is extra irritated that day). I was intrigued by this cleanser due to its ingredients; some natural brands create cleansers that are highly stripping with added natural fragrance, but it doesn’t actually do much except make your face painfully dry and angry. Bybi recognises the importance of the skin’s moisture barrier and it’s reliance on a healthy microbiome. Over exfoliating and stripping products can compromise your microbiome and leave your skin dry as a bone. Crystal Clear contains Inulin, a prebiotic from chicory root which is said to remove bad bacteria as well as encourage hydration. The smell is herby and refreshing and a delight to use on the skin both morning and evening. I think the price point is actually quite good for a cleanser like this; as with most of their products, a little goes a long way and you’ll get a lot of use out of it before having to replace it.
Demi’s personal fav 💓
This was the second product I have tried from Bybi, and it is most definitely my favourite. It works for everything, as a moisturiser, a cuticle balm, tattoo healing balm, hand moisturiser, lip balm – it does it all. It’s nice and thick without feeling like it’ll clog your skin, and you can see the hydration hit instantly. Thanks to the fruit wax and shea butter, it helps seal the moisture in ad keeps the skin soft. My tube is well-loved. It also contains coenzyme Q10, which is high in antioxidants as well as hibiscus oil which has a high vitamin C content – the balm also contains anti-inflammatory properties and ingredients that help repair the skin. A must-have product, in fact, I need two – one for home and one in my bag at all times.
I’ve only tried this scrub a couple of times, and although generally, I don’t care for scrubs, I have been using once every couple of weeks to help get rid of the milia on my cheeks (it’s a build-up of a lot of skin and gunk resulting in flesh coloured bumps). Alongside my monthly microdermabrasion, I do think it’s helped with making my skin texture a little smoother – I can definitely feel it immediately after use! It’s gentle and not abrasive like some scrubs on the market, st Ives – I am absolutely looking at you! I also like to use it on my body, as it’s also very hydrating. The only issue I have with this product is that I find it a little hard to get out of the tube; I worry about how I’ll cope when I get to the end of the product!
Demi’s personal fav 💓
I think it has to be my favourite booster; it gives me everything I need from a serum; hydration, plumpness and brightening. When you combine it with your moisturiser, you won’t even want to put any makeup on top of it. The glow is REAL sis. It’ll work on flakey skin and sensitive skin like a dream, due to it being high in omega 3 and 6 essential fatty acids. The cold-pressed oil is a by-product from the juice industry, so I’ll take three, please.
I have a little less experience with this booster, as I don’t like to use a lot of products at one given time – so the total review for this one may have to be added on. The Buriti Booster is described as protective and brightening; an antioxidant that protects against environmental stressors and UV light (that does NOT mean you get to skip SPF though). It hasn’t broken me out when I’ve used it, and it feels just as silky as the other boosters in the range. It’s like a nice mild alternative to vitamin C that will suit even sensitive skin. I think this product is similar to Supercharge but that one has some more benefits so I’d probably save my coin and go for that instead.
The Blueberry booster is very exciting, similar to the buriti booster, it protects our skin. This product, however, is directed towards blue light not only from the sun but from our phone and computer screens too! It’s not something you can particularly see working but it does also contain omega 3’s and 6’s to ensure your skin is in the best condition it can be after a long day of scrolling through Instagram. I don’t use this every day personally, but I can’t see anything wrong with daily use judging by the ingredients.
Demi’s personal fav 💓
This oil is levels – if you only want to buy one item from the entire range, I’d say either Babe Balm or Supercharge Serum. The serum, although oil-based, would probably suit oilier skin types better, as it gets absorbed into the skin far more quickly than the Babe Balm. It’s nourishing for dry skin too (thanks to squalane), and also has natural anti-oxidant properties. It’s essentially is all the best bits of the other products combined. It’s not too thick or heavy and actually melts into the skin. I adore using this – you can use it alone before or after moisturiser, but I generally like to mix them together for ease of application. Pre-milia days I would probably add on Babe Balm too, but I know I’m gonna get cussed out if I admit to that next time I get a chemical peel.
Demi’s personal fav 💓
Mixing makeup and skincare doesn’t often go down well, and I also tend to hate most skincare infused makeup products – I don’t need or want vitamin c in my primer; they’re often small concentrations, ineffective and the product sucks. Bybi probably knew this, and so luckily their offering is just right. Babe Balm Bronze is a lovechild of Babe Balm and a bronzer. Sustainable mica powder provides the shimmer, whilst shea butter and coenzyme q10 provide nourishment for a creamy application that makes your cheekbones glimmer (not overpoweringly) in the sunlight and completes the no make up make up look to perfection. I wear this almost every day on my cheekbones and tip of my nose as well as on my eyelids for that wet look glimmer. It lasts you forever because you can pick up a decent amount on your fingertip, but I would like them to reconsider the packaging slightly, maybe make the pot a little wider for bigger fingers (of course you can use a brush but I find a finger application works best).
As more and more vegan products enter the market from new and existing brands, I think it’s imperative we don’t get too greedy and grab everything off the shelf at once. Having so much choice is amazing and a huge step forward for the vegan and cruelty-free community, but we need to keep our standards high and push for sustainability and accountability every step of the way. I want every brand to be considering their environmental impact, their workers and pickers of the ingredients they source, their carbon footprint and recycling. It’s up to the consumers to question why brands aren’t cleaning up their messes and are irresponsibly and lazily contributing to carbon emissions, or modern-day slavery or the landfill. Bybi has set the bar high, and I have decided to eco-stan forever.
Until next time,
Demi – Colleen x