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Loop de Loop in Castletownbere, Co Cork

This issue sale assistant Caoimhe MacCarthy and owner/manager Frederika Le Cain review a collagen supplement, hair colour, face cream and shower bars and a vitamin C formula

1. HAZELNUT DRINK

Caoimhe says: “Rude Health Hazelnut Drink is my favourite milk alternative. It's amazing as a milk substitute in hot chocolate, coffee and cereals and it’s even delicious by the glass with a bar of chocolate!”

2. VITAMIN C FORMULA

Frederika says: “Optimum Nutrition Immune C Formula is my go-to for boosting immunity, dealing with high pollen count days (vitamin C and zinc have potent natural anti-histamine actions) and helping with slow circulation. The blend of vitamin C, zinc, ginger and elderberry never lets me down.”

3. SHOWER BAR

Caoimhe says: “As a Taurus, I love products that appeal to the senses, specifically smell. One product that I love for this reason is Marcel’s Vanilla & Cherry Blossom shower bar. Not only am I left smelling amazing after every shower, but my bathroom retains the scent too.”

4. HAIR COLOUR

Frederika says: “For anyone with a sensitive scalp the Naturtint Hair Coulourant* range has been a lifeline over the pandemic and closure of hairdressers. They are an ammonia-free dye infused with organic natural oils to protect the hair follicle while giving 100% grey coverage. Rich ingredients include shea butter, baobab, quinoa, meadowfoam seed oil and olive oleic acid. Perfect for anyone with sensitivities who doesn’t want to compromise on colour quality.”

5. NATURAL FACE CREAM

Caoimhe says: “I’m quite into self-care, and one way I like to indulge is by using Dublin Herbalists Rejuvenating Face Cream. It leaves my skin feeling as soft as a baby and it smells amazing. I also appreciate how a little goes a long way.”

6. COLLAGEN SUPPLEMENT

Frederika says: “Nature’s Plus Collagen Peptides contains six types of collagen in one and has maximised absorption rates with a collagen digesting enzyme. Since taking this product I have found my problematic knee joints have been giving me less trouble, my skin is more supple and the fine lines around the corners of the eye have visibly decreased. My nails are stronger and more flexible.”

*Naturtint is a less chemical and a more gentle hair colouring, but it is not completely natural or always suitable for people with sensitive scalps. We advise doing a skin test before use.

Harvest Fare in Blessington, Co Wicklow

Owner manager Martha Brennan, herbalist and nutritional advisor Paula White, and team members Angela Harney and Muirine Robinson test a dry shampoo, sleep support product and mushroom powders

1. MUSHROOM POWDER

Paula says: “I I love Hifas da Terra Mushroom Powders. Medicinal mushrooms are very popular now and they have a deep earthy taste rather than a typical mushroom flavour. Reishi has a stronger mushroom taste, while the Lion's Mane is more delicate, likened to lobster, and Cordyceps is more sweet. I add 1/2tsp of Reishi, Lions Mane or Cordyceps powder to a half measure of coffee or coffee alternative like Yannoh or Dandelion root and a dash of plant milk. I feel this nourishing drink definitely helps me stay strong and sharp!”

2. SLEEP SUPPORT

Martha says: “I’ve been using NHP Sleep Support and cannot believe how well it is working since I started taking it a few months ago. It stops that ‘wide awake for hours in the middle of the night’ torment which I'd been edperiencing since hitting perimenopause a few years ago. If I do wake I fall back to sleep within minutes. It has made a huge difference to me.”

3. MUSCLE GEL

Angela says: “A recent knee strain was causing a lot of discomfort when moving so I tried Optima Musseflex Gel and found great relief from pain. I found that rubbing it onto my knee a few times a day, as required, eased the discomfort greatly. Along with Rhus Tox, a homeopathic remedy by Weleda, I have been able to get on with everyday life with less pain.”

4. DRY SHAMPOO

Muirine says: “I’ve been using Mindful Beauty Natural Dry Shampoo. It’s easy to apply – I shake the bottle into my roots and just run and shake my fingers through to disperse the powder. The white powder absorbs quickly and there are different formulas for dark and fair hair. It gives some volume back to my hair too and is an Irish brand.”

5. HAIR, SKIN AND NAIL SUPPORT

Mulrine says: “SKIN.NY Hair Skin Nails really helped me with hair growth. I noticed a significant difference in only about six weeks as the new growth started to come in around my temples, which is where I’d lost hair. I couldn’t believe the effect on my nails too – I’d never felt them so strong. There are a lot of ingredients like Irish seaweed, marine collagen and MSM in the formula as well as minerals and vitamins.”

Click here to read other Rude Health Magazine Tried & Tested articles.