* Prices may differ from that shown
I didn't realise that Nivea offer soaps other than their original Creme bar until I saw them in Sainsbury's. I liked the sound of the passion fruit variety, as I thought that was a fairly unusual scent for a soap. It is also a fruit that I love to eat, although I won't be tempted to nibble my soap, don't worry! It cost just 59p for 90g, so I bought a packet to try.
WHAT BENEFITS NIVEA SAY THE SOAP OFFERS
The soap has the full title of "Passion fruit and Milk Proteins Care Soap". The "precious" milk proteins will apparently leave your skin feeling gently cleansed and pampered, while the passion fruit is said to leave it delicately perfumed. There is also an original milk protein soap, and a green tea and cucumber one in the range.
The soap comes in a little plastic packet like many soaps do. It is pretty purple and pink and bears the picture of the fruit and some drops of milk just in case you were in any doubt what "flavour" you had bought! It's not a luxurious looking product exactly but it doesn't stay in the packet for long. Once unwrapped it looks like just about any soap apart from the fact it is an attractive pinky mauve colour and has the word "Nivea" down the centre.
IS BATHING WITH PASSION FRUIT A GOOD IDEA?
What really attracted me to this soap was the scent. I couldn't detect much through the wrapper before I bought it but I thought that was because the packaging felt quite thick. When I unwrapped a bar, I didn't get that strong blast of scent that you get with some soaps. If I sniff it, it does smell lightly fruity and rather sherbetty but I wouldn't say that it smells strong or specifically of passion fruits. I have used it both in the bath and to wash my hands and I would say that once it is wet and you have have used it for a while the scent does build up. However I still think it has more of a general fruity aroma than anything else. I do like the scent as it isn't too "heavy" and it does seem fresh, but I was disappointed that I couldn't pinpoint the passion fruit. As for it scenting my skin after use, I would say this is only minimally obvious. Nivea did say my skin would only be "delicately" perfumed but I do think it could be more detectable nevertheless.
The other thing that is really subtle about this soap is the lather it produces - virtually none. I know that the lather is probably not actually necessary to clean your skin, but I do like to clean my hands in sudsy water. It feels more satisfying! However, to Nivea's credit, suds or no, the soap does just a good a job of cleaning my skin as any other.
DOES IT CARE FOR MY SKIN?
I am not convinced that this soap is more caring than any other really. Yes, it does help get my skin clean, and even my face doesn't feel dry or tight afterwards. [I don't have sensitive skin though and I don't use soap as my everyday face cleanser as I need the other benefits that facial products offer such as exfoliation.] My skin doesn't look or feel any softer so any caring benefits aren't obvious. I don't feel that using it is a pampering experience compared to other soaps that have a gorgeous scent, or a indulgent creaminess for example. But as an everyday soap, it is fine. I wouldn't recommend it if you really only wanted to try it for the scent as I did, as it isn't that strong or lingering - not to mention unlike fresh passion fruit to me. But as a reasonably priced soap I think it is worth buying. The bar is quite "hard" in texture so it has been wearing down slowly compared to the others I have on the go which makes it better value. I have also noticed that the soap is available for 2 for £1 in Poundland which shaves a bit more of the price. Definitely worth trying at that price, unless soap suds are the be all and end all for you!
[This review is also on Ciao under the same user name.]