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21 February 2017
Spice Curls Soap
A good percentage of those who grew up in the 90's will remember the Spice Girls with at least a small bout of fondness. Whether they joined one of the thousands of tribute groups that formed in playgrounds across the country, or simply bopped to their favourite songs in the comfort of their own bedroom, everyone was caught up with the Brit-pop sensation in some small way.
While the inclusion of ginger seems to be the only reference Spice Curls Soap has to the famous group, there is something very sassy and sultry about the aroma. It is this very factor that makes me believe it is the ingredients and powerful aroma that form a link between the product and one of the biggest girl groups of all time.
So where to start with this complex and very interesting soap? I'll begin by stating that Spice Curls is a wholesome cluster of herbs and spices - a thick crescendo of smells that lace together to form one of the strongest smelling soaps I have ever experienced from Lush. While its use is definitely limited to the colder months of the year, this is a soap that leaves a lasting impression on both your body and your mind; it's not one that you forget easily, for better or worse.
With cardamom as the key ingredient, this soap is warm and slightly smoky, with very dry but subtle notes of what I can only describe as lemon. This is a byproduct of the cardamom though, not a stand alone ingredient, so don't expect this soap to be fruity. Alongside this, there is also an accumulation of cloves and cinnamon underneath, which add an equal measure of heat and spice. Both of these two components have their own natural sweetness, but I would not describe this soap as being sweet in the same way that you might describe the likes of Hot Toddy or Cinders.
Instead, the layers of ginger, paprika, ground chilli and cayenne pepper make this a strong, grounded spicy aroma, while the inclusion of peppermint adds a crisp but full-flavoured fragrance. This reminds me of both Pumpkin Soap and Jacko Ballistic, albeit much stronger, slightly creamier and more rounded.
What I will say is that Spice Curls is one of the most full-bodied soaps I have ever come across from Lush. It's potency will greet you before you've even opened the box, and it continues to dominate any room you leave it resting in. As you can imagine, the smell transpires well in the shower, and is definitely an effective alternative to minty or bright citrusy smells, if you're looking for something to wake you up.
This is quite a soft soap, as in it gives way a little when you squeeze it, so I would suggest that you pat it dry in between uses so as not to allow the water to shrink your block quicker than you would like. Having said that, the consistency works in your favour as it is such a generous latherer, and takes very little stimulation to produce a thick, creamy and very fragrant foam to wash yourself with. I'd say that this is a soap you don't need to hold under the running water too much in the shower: it would probably diminish fairly quickly this way, and you could easily create an amass of lather away from the stream and then massage this across your skin.
Featuring ground rice as one of the key ingredients, you'll notice that this soap also has a slight gritty texture to it. This allows the product to offer a gentle exfoliation while you're cleaning yourself, and I love how soft my skin felt without needing to put too much pressure on my body while I was using the soap. This would be great for those who dislike scratchy scrubs, or for those who have sensitive skin, as you barely notice the exfoliation because it is so gentle. However, the results are just as impressive as some of Lush's sugar-based scrubs.
As to be expected, the smell of this stayed on my skin for a long time afterwards, which is part of the reason why I believe it is more suited for the winter months. I don't quite know how I'd feel being able to smell a strong thread of cloves and cardamom on my skin when the sun was out and making me sweat!
Impressively, once I had towelled myself down and let my skin completely dry, I was surprised to find that my hands and arms felt really soft and shiny - my hands in particular sharing the same feeling I get when I've applied hand cream to them. The only negative aspect about this soap, aside from it being suited to certain seasons, is that I also feel as if I'd have to be in a certain mood to use this. As it is very heavy on the senses, this is not a soap I would want to use all the time; neither is it a soap that I think would sit well as a hand soap - its potency would be quite off-putting for those wanting to wash their hands.
Overall, I found that I liked this soap a lot more than I was expecting to. The combination of its strong smell, soft appearance and lasting smoothness means that this is a soap I reckon that you need to try at least once, if only to Spice Up Your Life. However, if you dislike potent fragrances, this is one you are gonna Wannabe missing.
Quantitative Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Glycerine, Rapeseed Oil and Coconut Oil, Kaolin,Ground Rice, Sorbitol, Fresh Ginger Root, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, Cardamom Oil, Clove Bud Oil, Spearmint Oil, Organic Hungarian Paprika, Fair Trade Organic Cinnamon Powder, Organic Ground Cayenne Pepper, Organic Ground Chilli, Sodium Chloride, EDTA, Tetrasodium Etidronate, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Stearate, *Cinnamal, *Eugenol, *Limonene, *Linalool, Perfume, Colour 15510.
2017 Price: £4.50 for 100g.
Year Of Original Release: 2008.