Summertime is synonymous with eating fresh fruits and berries. It’s also the perfect time to seek out fruit-based natural ingredients in your beauty and skincare products—but please, no nibbling. Burt’s Bees is probably the brand most closely associated with these types of wholesome ingredients. Just a few of its newest releases include hydrating facial cleanser towelettes with watermelon, as well as tropical pineapple lip balm and Squeezy tinted lip balm in summer melon. Associate product developer and director Abena Antwi notes that the company has been making use of so-called waste from the food industry for years, since long before upcycling became a sustainability buzzword. She describes it as “really looking at the whole product stream to see what we can use instead of just throwing stuff away.”
To that end, strawberries, mango and papaya add flavour to Burt’s Bees products, and their extracts also benefit the skin in various ways thanks to the antioxidants and vitamins they’re packed with. Antwi points out that fruit-based ingredients are often as effective as their synthetic counterparts at nourishing, moisturizing and exfoliating the skin. Another top-of-mind brand for fruity formulations is The Body Shop. One of its new products, a glow-boosting moisturizer, gets its vitamin C from camu camu berries. “They may look tiny, but [they’re] positively bursting with antioxidant-rich vitamin C,” says Hilary Lloyd, VP marketing and values. “Our camu camu berries, sourced in the Amazonian rainforests of Peru, help to improve the look of skin tone and texture, boost radiance and protect skin against scavenging effects of free radicals.”
Lots of other popular brands have been embracing the power of appetizing ingredients, too. Sade Baron uses natural ingredients like apricot kernel oil in its Moi multipurpose balm and Tai body oil. Also key to Tai is prickly pear oil. According to co-founder and CEO Rachel Lambo, “Prickly pear oil contributes vitamins E and K and is particularly rich in amino acids that stimulate collagen production, essential fatty acids that calm inflammation and polyphenols to fight signs of aging.” She notes that it’s “one of the most expensive botanical oils in the world, due to the small seed size and high-labour demands of extracting oil.”
Ole Henriksen makes a Barrier Booster orange ferment essence with orange extract, stem cells and ferment, all of which are beneficial for the skin. Its Firmly Yours toning dry body oil has elderberry, black currant and cloudberry oil, along with antioxidant-rich black currant extract. And its lemonade smoothing scrub is especially useful in summertime, since ingredients like lemon peel exfoliant, enzyme and fruit extract help combat the effects of sun damage. “We believe in combining scientifically proven, trusted ingredients and skin-loving natural ingredients to deliver comprehensive benefits and results in clean, highly active formulas,” says Riva Barak, VP product development at parent company Kendo Brands.
Some other must-haves to add to your fruity skincare regime include Boscia’s papaya and pomegranate enzyme exfoliating body cleanser with pomegranate fruit enzymes; L’Occitane’s verbena citrus fresh granita body gel with orange and lemon essential oils and grapefruit extract; Laneige’s lip sleeping mask in mango with berry fruit complex; and Dans un Jardin’s soaps, scrubs and body creams—the brand’s star ingredient is its exclusive Bota Biome Complex, of botanicals like elderberry, goldenrod and goldenseal.
Fresh’s sugar strawberry exfoliating face wash has strawberry and black currant extracts to maintain a healthy-looking complexion, along with grapeseed oil for hydration. Pura Botanicals’ hyaluronic watermelon essence contains wild mushroom, cucumber and watermelon extracts to plump and replenish the skin. Glow Recipe is a fruit-forward brand that uses antioxidant-rich foods in a host of products, including banana soufflé moisture cream, blueberry bounce gentle cleanser, plum plump hyaluronic cream and watermelon glow sunscreen.
Dew of the Gods produces the Fujifuji collagen whip vitamin mask with vitamin C and lychee extract. Founder (and TikTok star) Ryan Dubs explains why lychee is so useful: “It smells amazing, but it’s also really good as an anti-aging ingredient.” He likens lychee to a natural Botox, adding that it’s also effective at reducing inflammation. “The whole vibe of this mask is to make your skin feel dewy and bright and bouncy, and just awake, basically.”
Dubs ensures that all ingredients used in Dew of the Gods products have a good EWG score, meaning they’re not toxic or harmful, and he encourages consumers to Google ingredients before buying beauty and skincare products. “Just be knowledgeable about what you’re putting on your skin,” he says. “It’s crazy how these other brands, they just bank on the fact that people won’t do that.” In other words, be sure to cherry-pick your products, just like you would your produce. We certainly don’t want to put any bad apples on our faces. —Sheri Radford