One of the best aspects of the Lush Kitchen Initiative, are the pictures that accompany each of your orders. I think it's a rather lovely touch to be able to see your products being made and experience part of that excitement as you tear open the packaging and hungrily eye up what you have in front of you. It's always a shame then, when you find the product doesn't live up to the expectations set.
When I first glimpsed at the pictures of Chocolala Massage Bar, it reminded me of a giant rolo, and I envisaged a creamy, gooey chocolately product that would moisturise my skin and leave me smelling divine. However, my experience was tarnished from the get-go and it didn't improve at all during usage.
Firstly, upon opening my Lush package, I found that my massage bar did not look as appetising as the ones I saw being made on their website. Mine came out looking rather beaten and dishevelled, and some of the chocolate had been chipped away or smeared across the surface. This could have easily been the fault of the postal service, so I wouldn't have had such an issue had it not been for the fact that this was one of the smallest massage bars I have ever purchased from Lush, despite it being the most expensive.
Chocolala was priced at almost £9, and from the pictures I imagined a massage bar that perhaps surpassed the size of most of Lush's regular sellers. However, this bar's diameter is probably no more than 4cm wide and barely stretches to 4cm tall. It's incredibly overpriced, especially given the minimal ingredients that were used to create it.
Much like all of Lush's other massage bars, this one has a ton of wonderful ingredients that supposedly help to soften and moisturise your skin; cocoa butter, shea butter and sandalwood oil are all present to help moisturise and remove dry, scaly skin, while the latter oil makes up the majority of this bar's scent; orange oil has been added to give the bar a subtle citrus scent whilst containing key properties to clean your skin.
On initial sniff, you can definitely pick out the sandalwood and violet, and these two dominate the overall fragrance. There is a slight hint of chocolate, but it's not as present as I was expecting. When it's being used on the skin, the chocolately smell comes out a lot more and you begin to smell the beautiful creamy dark chocolate that makes up most of this bar.
My main issue with Chocolala is that it's not very good at doing the job it's marketed to do. Firstly, it's very difficult to massage this bar successfully across the skin. Despite me warming my hands up, and despite my body still being very warm from my recent bath, this product would simply not melt and I was left with large smears of chocolate all over my body. I was finally able to rub these stains into my skin so they weren't visible externally, but the whole experience left me and my body feeling sticky and dirty.
Secondly, the massage bar didn't help to soften or moisturise my skin at all, and I resorted to applying a body lotion just to give my skin something to work with. Furthermore, the scent didn't linger for very long at all and a mere 30 minutes after I'd battled to apply the Chocolala, I could no longer detect any of the wonderful violet and sandalwood tones that made this massage bar smell so good.
Overall, my expectations of this massage bar have been truly dashed and I'm glad I opted in purchasing just the one to try. Having spoken to other Lush fans, there are quite a few who love the messy element to this product, and perhaps it's a lot more fun when you're massaging somebody else. However, my experience was a very unsuccessful one and I would not use this product again.
Quantitative Ingredients: Dark Chocolate, Cocoa Butter (Theobroma cacao), Shea Butter (Butyrospermum parkii), Orange Oil (Citrus dulcis), Sandalwood Oil (Santalum album), Violet Leaf Absolute (Viola odorata), Perfume.
2016 Price: £8.95 each.