Friday, 3 December 2010

Ila Spa

A few weeks ago I attended an event showcasing the beautiful ila spa range, and I am so excited to tell you all about this brand, as I really do think it is quite special!
Ila means Earth in Sanskrit, which is very appropriate as this brand really works with nature and aims to be 'beyond organic'. It was very clear to me that Denise Leicester, the creator of this range, is extremely passionate about creating holistic, organic, chemical free products from the highest quality ingredients collected in a sustainable way. I was absolutely captivated by the stories of her travels all over the world in search of pure, natural ingredients. Her vision goes beyond the way in which we see beauty products, as she believes that by using truly natural substances we can harness the energy of the Earth to bring balance to the body. I remember when I was little my grandmother once explained to me that bread from a factory, where the dough had been made by machines could never be as good as from a bakery, as it didn't have the human touch. I can't really say how in tune I am with such beliefs, but I find it very thought provoking!
One of my favourite ingredients (and stories) in this range is the Rose Otto Oil (Rosa Damascena Flower Oil). These roses are grown and distilled in India using traditional methods. Water, drawn from the earth simply by solar energy is mixed with petals in copper vats and heated by fire (using cow dung as fuel). The mixture is then cooled and the oil separated as it floats on the surface. The spent petals are fed to the cows, thus completing the cycle.
I have always loved the scent of roses (perhaps because my mama used to dip my dummy into rose jam when I was little, naughty!), but this has the most beautiful scent I have ever tried. Rubbing a single drop between my palms released the most exquisite scent - sweet, warm and deep without being overly heavy. I inquired as to whether we were able to purchase this oil, as I would love it as a perfume, and was told that it is priced at £10,000 per litre, which explains Ila's luxury brand price point.
Every ingredient has been carefully chosen for its unique value. The Argan oil is produced by a womens' cooperative in Morocco while the salt used in the scrubs comes from Eastern Pakistan and is hundreds of millions of years old.

Though none of this would make compelling reading if the products themselves didn't measure up, so I was keen to try them as soon I got home from the event. One product I already knew I loved was the  Tuberose and Rose candle. These filled the entire room with the most delicious rose scent, which reminded me of Turkish delight, and the next day I could still smell it in my hair! I burn candles at home all the time, and never has the fragrance lasted on me (and if it has it was more the smoke than the scent).
I was kindly given the glowing radiance collection to try and I have really enjoyed using these products. They have a very defined and strong scent, which is somehow simultaneously relaxing yet envigorating. Just a few drops of the bath oil are enough to turn the bathwater milky and soft. I really dislike bath oils that float on the surface, but this one emulsifies beautifully and leaves my skin feeling really soft and lightly fragranced.
I usually follow this with the body cream, which contains argan oil and organic shea butter combined with damascena rose otto and tuberose. The cream is pretty thick, but it does not feel heavy so it spreads easily and sinks into the skin fairly quickly leaving it soft, but not at all oily.
The fragrance of the cream is quite difficult to describe, it has a spicy, earthy base (which reminds me of the incense used in Thai temples) with a rose heart and a mild sweetness. I am not sure everyone would love it as it is potent and lasts on the skin a long time. I have been using it mainly on my arms and decolletage, and when applied at night the scent left behind in the morning is still noticeable.
 
I could say so much more about this brand as I do find the story behind its creation fascinating, but the products do speak for themselves! Everything seems to have been thought of and it's the little details that I find really make ila special, such as the soya based ink on all their recyclable packaging and leaflets, their use of Fiji water and the research that was carried out to see how the products affect your aura (they improve it apparently)!

You can find more information about ila, as well as a list of their products, stockists and spa locations here. Their spa treatments sound very intriguing, and I would definitely like to try one in the near future (wonder if the bf is reading this..). Have you tried any ila products? I would love to know what you think of them! xxx
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