As I order almost all of my Lush stuff through their website, I'm never really 100% sure what I'm going to get before it arrives at my door. A product may claim to be a certain size or possess a certain smell, but until I eagerly unwrap that packaging for the first time, nothing is guaranteed.
When Secret Santa was first announced, I was super excited about the prospect of a bath bomb smelling like Lush's 29 High Street perfume (originally called HQ). For those unfamiliar with this product, 29 was a perfume designed to smell just like a Lush shop. Remember that potent smell that first enticed you to step into the cosmetic equivalent of Willy Wonka's chocolate factory? Well the clever bunnies at Lush decided to take this wonderful mixture of fragrances and turn it into something you could wear on you all day. I'm actually rather surprised that Lush doesn't have a permanent ballistic with this scent as I'm sure it'll be very popular.
Modelled on the original Lush shop, 29 Poole High Street, Secret Santa is a new bath ballistic that was first featured in Lush's Christmas 2013 range. The bath bomb is super sized, barely fitting inside one of Lush's generic paper bags and is supposed to be used across 2-3 baths. However, due to the fact that it is a very compact ballistic, it is slightly difficult to break apart to do this. Rather than bashing it against the bath tub, like I have done for other ballistics, this one works better when you use a knife to separate the two halves. Around the outside of the bath bomb, you'll find a 'seam' line that, when you press the sharp edge of a knife into it, will give way and present you with two equal-sized pieces.
Lush claim that the Secret Santa contains a smaller, 'secret' Father Christmas bath bomb inside. However, when I broke one apart, I found that mine had a circular red core that was welded to the ballistic, so I don't think you could use this separately.
Much like the perfume, Lush have chosen specific scents to represent their unique shop fragrance. Firstly, they've included both lime and lemon oil, which give the product it's uplifting scent and helps to soften the bath water. Secondly, they've used Jasmine Absolute; a rich, floral scent that helps to lighten your mood and relax your mind.
Up next is Sandalwood oil; a base note that is used in a whole array of Lush products, especially in their perfumes. This gives Secret Santa a light, woody scent that balances out the sweetness of the citrus oils and gives it a rounder overall fragrance. Finally, they've included Tonka absolute, which gives the ballistic a natural, sweet scent that compliments the citrus elements.
With the calming scent of ylang ylang as well as all of these diverse yet complimentary scents, Secret Santa is a feast for your senses. I really enjoyed it's citrusy smell, which I feel is more prominent than the other scents featured here. However, the longer you spend in the bath, the more you begin to notice those woody and floral fragrances coming through.
When you drop it into your bath, it starts to fizz and create the most wonderful bright orange shade in the water. As the ballistic fizzes away, the water begins to turn a beautiful fuchsia colour with a slightly glittery finish. This uplifting tangerine colour is a real treat for the eyes, and the scent, which remains throughout the entire bathing experience, perks you up and leaves your skin feeling warm and slightly scented.
For £5.75, it's a rather expensive ballistic and this is part of the reason why I have rated it lower than I would have done. For the hefty price tag, it doesn't offer you any more than a usual bath bomb would. For almost £3 cheaper, I would much rather pick up a Father Christmas, which shares similar traits to Secret Santa, but offers me a lot more bang for my buck.
However, it does smell very similar to 29, one of my favourite Lush perfumes, so I cannot complain about the scent. I think if this was a limited edition ballistic that had come out for a special occasion, I would have understood the price tag and bought a few to last me. As it's most likely to come back next Christmas, I'll refrain from buying anymore and just hope that they harvest the smell in a more cost-effective bath bomb.
Quantitative Ingredients: Sodium Bicarbonate, Citric Acid, Perfume, Ylang Ylang Absolute, New Caledonian Sandalwood Oil, Indian jasmine absolute, Lime Oil, Sicilian Lemon Oil, Tonka Absolute, Water, *Citral, *Benzyl Benzoate, *Limonene, *Linalool, Methyl Ionone, Hydroxycitronellal, Benzyl Alcohol, Coumarin, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Colour 14700, Colour 17200, Colour 15510, Colour 45410, Snowflake Lustre.
29 and a Half Soap
29 High Street Liquid Perfume
29 High Street Solid Perfume
29 High Street Shower Gel
Secret Santa Ballistic