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These days, the term “self-care” is everywhere, but it’s so rare to actually do it. Even in quarantine, sometimes it can feel like there’s never enough time in the day to do all of the self-care things social media tells us to do. But then I realized self-care can come from anything, even just applying a really good facial oil.
For brands like MUTHA, self-care is a core value. Created by Hope Smith, a mom-to-be who was on the hunt for clean body products and concocted a really good DIY stretch mark salve that she wanted to share with other mamas, the luxury skincare brand encourages people, whether they’re mothers or not, to put themselves before others by giving them permission to pamper themselves with quality products. MUTHA, in turn, encourages those who use its products to feel confident and nurtured in their own skin and serves as an important reminder that self-care is never selfish. In the spirit of giving back to other moms, the brand also donates 5% of sales to midwives and nurse education programs where maternal mortality rates are the highest. Smith has also partnered with International Medical Corps, which aids in enrolling health workers in obstetric and newborn care certifications in the Central African Republic to programs in South Sudan.
With such an empowering and philanthropic message coursing through the brand, it’s no surprise that MUTHA has garnered up some attention, which has landed it on the radar of celebrities among the likes of Kate Hudson, Jenny Mollen and more.
Between MUTHA’s glowing reviews from skincare enthusiasts, influencers and celebrities alike, I was very keen to test out the brand. In order to give myself a proper introduction into the MUTHA universe, I began with its bestsellers: the Facial Oil ($110), the Body Oil ($104), and of course, the Body Butter ($95) that started it all. Each product is formulated without known irritants and toxins and instead, enlists the help of natural ingredients such as coconut oil, rosehip oil, grapeseed oil, beeswax, cocoa butter, shea nut butter and more to deliver results.
One look at the packaging and it’s clear that this is a luxury brand. The products live in luxe metallic containers and bottles that scream luxury. When you’re holding either one, you feel like a million bucks, which was definitely intentionally done by Smith and the MUTHA team. Although, for the price points, I was expecting the Facial Oil and Body Oil to be bigger and offer more product. The Body Butter, on the other hand, met my expectations in terms of size and the amount of product offered.
Here’s what I thought of each product:
I am never one to turn down a good facial oil, and I was very excited to give MUTHA’s Facial Oil a try. It’s formulated with a blend of Tsubaki, Kalahari and Borage Seed Oils, which are each packed with omega fatty acids to replenish moisture in the skin while also making sure to lock it in. The Facial Oil is also rich in antioxidants and helps to stimulate cell turnover in the skin, making it excellent for reducing the appearance of wrinkles and unwanted tone and texture.
As someone who enjoys a lot of slip from their skincare products, I applied a generous dropper full of the oil on my first go, which ended up being the perfect amount for me; anything more or less wouldn’t have satisfied my dryness, but thankfully it didn’t make me look or feel slick and oily.
Its floral jasmine scent was the first thing that caught my attention, which kind of reminded me of olive oil at first but makes the oil feel even more luxurious. If I’m being honest, at first, the Face Oil and I didn’t vibe well but I think it was because my skin wasn’t used to it. After going through a bit of a purging phase and experiencing some minor breakouts along my cheeks and chin for a week or so, I began to see what all of the hype was about. Not only does it leave your skin feeling smooth and hydrated, but I noticed that it also balanced out the redness I have from my rosacea. And, while it might be too soon to tell, I think that it also gave my skin a little more bounce to it. In true self-care fashion, I’ve been taking a few minutes to massage the oil into my face after applying it as part of my nighttime ritual. Between the rejuvenating properties of the oil and the puffiness relief from the massage, my skin has never been happier.
When it comes to body moisturizers, I find myself leaning towards lotions and cream formulas over oils because of their tendency to leave me feeling greasy before I put on my clothes. But, I know body oils are extremely good for improving firmness and hydration in the skin, so I tried to keep an open mind when it came to MUTHA’s Body Oil, which is formulated with rosehip and other antioxidant-rich ingredients to deliver moisture and skin-healthy vitamins and minerals straight to the cells.
Like the Facial Oil, I was immediately taken with the Body Oil’s scent. It’s got a subtle citrus scent to it that feels really invigorating and uplifting, especially after a long day. Another self-care moment, I made sure to take a deep waft of the scent before testing out the oil. I don’t know if it’s just me, but I feel like I needed a lot of oil to feel adequately hydrated. And once again, like the Facial Oil, I didn’t vibe well with the Body Oil. It’s got an orange hue to it from the rosehip oil that made my skin orangey until it absorbed fully, which took a bit of time I might add. But after a few uses, I began to enjoy the orangeness because it also made my skin look super glowy and firm. If you can get past the temporary faux tan and the greasiness of the oil, then you’ll enjoy this oil.
I haven’t met a body butter that I haven’t liked, and I was beyond excited to try MUTHA’s Body Butter after reading so many positive reviews about its creamy texture and intense moisturizing properties. Its hydrating abilities come courtesy of its skin-conditioning blend of shea, cocoa and mango butters, which each bring vitamins, antioxidants and fatty acids into the mix. Since the brand was basically founded around this body moisturizer, I had very high hopes going in.
Let me just say that “butter” is the perfect way to describe the texture and appearance of this product. It has the same yellow color to it and is thick enough to put on top of toast. But unlike butter, it doesn’t have that similar melt-in-your-hand softness. In fact, its texture resembles that of coconut oil more where it’s kind of hard to take a piece off and it’s got that collapsible glide to it. To get the product at the right texture, you have to really warm it up in your hands first—and I mean really warm it up. This felt very messy and unnecessary to me and made the experience take longer than I felt it needed to. Since the product is so thick and tough on its own, I also found that it wasn’t easy to get even application and that it left me feeling super greasy and sticky. It definitely wasn’t my favorite out of the trio. I think the Body Butter would be better suited for dry spots, rough patches and targeted areas rather than the whole body; it was intended to help reduce the appearance of stretch marks, after all!
One of my favorite things about skincare is that it offers a unique experience for everyone. That being said, sometimes something that works for one person’s skin might not work for someone else’s and our preferences don’t always align. Based on my experience, I found that these are products that you have to get used to; they don’t mesh well into your routine at first. But, once you do get used to them, figure out how to navigate them and adjust your expectations accordingly, you’ll find that they’re really good at their jobs. Out of the trio, I would say that my favorite has been the Facial Oil and I will be continuing to use it in my nightly skincare routine. My second favorite goes to the Body Oil and the Body Butter ranks in at third.
Five More Reasons to Love MUTHA
- MUTHA values feeling confident and strong in your own skin and encourages others to do the same.
- Created with expectant mamas in mind, each product is formulated without harsh irritants and chemicals to provide luxurious and safe skincare for all.
- MUTHA supports other mothers by directing five percent of its sales towards empowering midwife and nurse education programs where maternal mortality rates are the highest, ensuring that mothers all over the world can deliver their children safely.
- The brand prioritizes self-care and reminds women everywhere that it’s never selfish to take care of yourself.
- MUTHA works hard to put an end to mom-shaming by uplifting members of its BAD MUTHA community.