Product Type: Lush Bath / Shower
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Vanilla 'bombe' pudding
Lush Vanilla Fountain Ballistic
Member Name: calypte
Lush Vanilla Fountain Ballistic
Date: 31/08/08, updated on 02/09/08 (218 review reads)
Advantages: sweet smell, left my skin feeling nice
Disadvantages: icky colour of bath water!
I'm not usually much of a ballistic fan (I prefer the bubble bar slices) but the simplicity of this (read: no horrible bits to float about your bath!), plus the description - "Comforting vanilla... with a touch of restful sandalwood and a note of burnt caramel" - was enough incentive to at least try it. And reader: I liked it so much I went out and bought another!
Now, much as I like vanilla there are limits, and I'm pleased to report that this isn't overwhelming sickly-sweet. In fact, the smell is as much fudge/toffee as vanilla - sort of a cross between the Ma Bar (if you know what that smells like) and crème brulee. As ever, the reek from the bag mellows significantly when you dilute it in the bath, thankfully! That said, I would recommend removing the dried vanilla pod decorating the ballistic - it's not really water-friendly, and reviews from the Lush site talk about vanilla seeds speckling the bath - yuk! I used mine to scent the bin, actually - or try wardrobes and underwear drawers (you might want to leave it in the bag for that!).
Another departure for me, aside from buying a ballistic in the first place, is that I decided I'd indulge myself with just one bath from this. It's not something I like doing, partly for the cost aspect (one bath should not cost more than a quid, let alone almost three!) and also 'cos I just find that much 'product' in one bath can often be too much, leaving me feeling coated in soapiness. Not so here - not only was the smell from the whole ballistic just right (well, still fairly strong!), but I didn't feel like I needed to rinse myself off after the bath. Perhaps this is because the VF is about half the size of the usual ballistic (110g v. 200g) - definitely not a complaint here, as it suits me FAR better!
Alas, I might not have felt the need of a rinse off, but not so the bath: it definitely needed a scrub afterwards! (Of course, if you're as lazy as me, just rinse it with another bath the following evening. Ahem. In fairness, I was feeling groggy and not up to bath cleaning. Really. No, usually it *would* be washed properly!! ;)) The Vanilla Fountain is disguised as a rather pale, creamy yellow, inoffensive looking product - but drop it in the bath and the water (and thus the tidemark!) is turned a violent, fluorescent yellow! It's not altogether appealing, I'll admit, but hey - us Lush devotees have bathed in worse, right? ;) It's not too bad, if perhaps not the relaxing image I conjure up with baths!
As with all of the ballistics range, there are no bubbles, but sometimes I quite like that. It does mean there's no hiding from that bright yellow colour, right enough...!
Again, the scent is quite... pudding-y. There's that slight 'tang' I always (think I) get from the bicarbonate of soda (the stuff that makes the fizz), which added to the colour can make you think you should be smelling lemon. I think if the vanilla was stronger, you wouldn't be able to be fooled in this way, but a bit of concentration and it's definitely vanilla!
Vanilla does make a rare appearance in the ingredients list - usually it's hidden in the 'perfume', but here we see both vanilla absolute and of course the pod stuck in the top. Otherwise, I think most of the scent is coming from that 'perfume' ingredient, as I couldn't detect any of the essential oils. These are the mysterious 'tonka absolute', which a web search links to both vanilla and - bizarrely! - tobacco scents! It's also supposed to have butterscotch and amber notes, which would make sense. I'm not entirely sure what effects this is supposed to have, but oddly tonka absolute products cannot be sold in the USA - hmm!
The other essential oil here is jasmine, which is more floral than this bath bomb would suggest, as is the gardenia extract. As I said - it's all in that perfume! That said, jasmine is relaxing and confidence-boosting, and is said to be beneficial for scar treatment and skin elasticity. All good stuff for a bath!
After a lovely relaxing hour soaking in puddingy-ness, my skin felt lovely and soft - not dried out at all, but not with the nasty layer I remember from the Butterball. Talking of which, *this* is rather what I expected the Butterball to smell like!
As I said, I bought another Vanilla Fountain two days later, which has to count as a thumbs up! Spending the better part of three quid in one bath is an indulgence - but to me, that's what Lush is all about. And really, a calorie-free treat of just £2.75, which lasted me an hour (plus lingering scent in the bathroom!) is actually a bit of a bargain ;)
Sodium Bicarbonate , Citric Acid , Perfume , Vanilla Absolute (Vanilla planifolia) , Jasmine Absolute (Jasminum officinale) , Tonka Absolute (Dipteryx odorata) , *Hydroxycitronellal , *Coumarin , Gardenia Extract (Gardenia jasminoides) , Colour 45350 , Vanilla Pod (Vanilla planifolia) (from lush.co.uk)
Available from Lush stores, and for a postage premium of nearly £5, via the website.
"When Mo brings a new Bath Ballistic to a Lush creative team meeting, she gets a bowl full of warm water, drops it in, then hands it around the room for everyone to smell. With the Vanilla Fountain, no-one wanted to let go of the bowl and pass it on. Without doubt, this little Ballistic is going to sell out in minutes (and that`s only if the kitchen ever manages to make more than the creative team need for themselves). Simon Constantine made the comforting vanilla scent with natural vanilla absolute -the posh stuff made from vanilla pods - with a touch of restful sandalwood and a note of burnt caramel. It was inspired by the extraordinary deserts at Heston Blumental`s amazing restaurant, The Fat Duck at Bray (www.fatduck.co.uk). Our designers, Joe and Katie, went there and haven`t been seen since. Anyway, if you live to far away to eat chez Heston you can i) get his book Further Adventures in Search of Perfection or ii) a few Vanilla Fountains for the bathing equivalent of an adventure in search of perfection. I comes pretty close." (from lush.co.uk)
A sweet treat of a bath.
Summary: A sweet treat of a bath