Aftelier Body Oils

Aftelier Perfumes has got some serious flower power happening. If you Google too fast for organic body oils, you can easily miss these horticultural masterpieces handcrafted by the Mandy Aftel. It seems almost every mainstream brand from high-street retailers right through to smaller, niche labels are bridging organo-happy creatives in a bid to bring a bit of true individuality, exclusivity and authenticity back onto the body care scene. But, for Mandy, the passion has been a requited art for long over a decade. Her highly successful career as curator of natural essences and fragrances (Forbes listed Mandy as one of the top 7 bespoke perfumers in the world) has now earned her the prestigious Fifi award (the annual "fragrance Oscars"), a status usually reserved for corporate houses and obscure perfumers. Score one for the independents!

There are few greater thrills when trying on a new body oil. And, one such thrill is sampling an entire collection. Ready to break free from our serious and idealistic mores on what a body oil should be, Aftelier’s intoxicating assortment (all 5 of them) turned our sampling experience into an extraordinary sensory session. The unlikely juxtaposition of essences in her line of body oils are what set the collection apart. Forget what the artisans say, the most innovative of essence expressions emerge not from their labs, but organically from the way people covet the rare & exotic. And, we deeply admire any artist who breaks free from the rigorously classical line and order of things in life.

Each body oil is constructed within the moisturizing jojoba oil and fractionated coconut oil, both of which are closest in molecular structure to your skin's own natural sebum, making the body oil and its essences more readily absorbed into your skin. Fractionated coconut oil is acquired through a separation process where the non-chemical the smaller molecules of coconut oil (that remain liquid at room temperature) are separated out from the whole coconut oil resulting in lightweight oil. Because it’s not as weighty, it’s actually fully metabolized by the body, making it the preferred choice as carrier oil for essential oils as it will transport healthful ingredients through the body and serving muscles, nerve tissue, etc. Many artisans prefer this refined version to whole coconut oil, which tends to go rancid more quickly.

A bit about each:

  • Chocolate Saffron Body Oil: Gourmand sweetness reigns in this intensely scented oil, which has a tightening effect from the astringent qualities of saffron.
  • Lavender Ginger Body Oil: Here, ginger - rumoured to help treat cellulite and varicose veins - warms the comforting flecks of lavender.
  • Patchouli Spice Body Oil: The indelible patchouli – known to treat acne, cracked, chapped skin – brings a musky darkness.
  • Rose Body Oil: Billowy rose essences are comprised of 80% essential fatty acids, which work nicely to rehydrate dry skin and repair damaged skin cells of all sorts.
  • Vetiver Mint Body Oil: The grassy vetiver is complemented perfectly with a perky mint to ease muscle aches and mental exhaustion.

There is so much choice with these oils. Not only do you need to choose your mood of the moment: sexy, fickle or merry, but you also need to decide whether to moisturize hair, body or even face and with which one. I tried the rose on my split ends, the lavender ginger on the soles of feet, and patchouli over my legs…and say…they work well for all uses.

The oils have an astonishing texture, just enough slip to be able to get a good massage action going and for it to absorb well, but not so greasy that it leaves an oily residue. Skin is left plumped and dewy, feeling softer and more hydrated after a few hours. The calming compositions are brilliantly mesmerizing as the veil of scents last much longer than that of other oils. At the end of my tutorial, I can identify my two faves—the Rose and the Patchouli Spice—but I still have not concluded which extravagance outshines the other. Always being partial to the profuse blossoms of roses, I was taken aback by the aromatically enigmatic oil – purely dense as if the darkest, most voluptuous petals were selected for the essence. No hybrid extracts were used here. Simply bewitching.

It's Aftelier’s diversity that truly distinguishes her blended oils from the mainstream ones; that, and the fact these aren’t oils in the generic sense — they’re oils of transcendence.