With the release of so many retro products, I am finding that many of my old, original reviews are having to be updated - not only to reflect the versatility of my preferences nowadays, but also to offer a better representation of the products at hand. Many of my early reviews were based on old products that I had been gifted to me, or ones I'd managed to acquire through eBay. Therefore, they were never in the best condition to begin with, and certainly didn't reflect the fresh ethos that the company stand for.
Christmas Cake Slice Soap was a product that I managed to get my hands on, back when I first began collecting Lush in the spring of 2012. While I thought myself lucky at the time, I realise now that the piece I acquired was most likely from the original batch released, which came out some five years before this in 2007. Thus my experience of the cement-like, brown brick was not ever going to receive any glowing reviews, which wasn't going to be helpful for my readers wanting to know about the soap a little more.
Described by Lush as being 'like a slice of Christmas cake on a plate next to an open fire of fragrant, smouldering wood logs', this soap promised to be a calorie-free indulgence for those with a sweet tooth. As someone who has never been a fan of the traditional Christmas Cake, I was skeptical that I would appreciate the soap for what it was worth. However, upon arrival, I was really impressed by how much it played the part, by both looking and smelling like a slice of the festive season.
Made from a combination of rapeseed, sunflower, coconut, almond, vetivert and cedarwood oil, this limited edition product promises to be a moisturising and rather sensual experience for those who need a little extra indulgence around the holiday season.
Surprisingly, it is the latter two oils that offer the most dominating smell here. Vetivert oil has a smokey, woody note, and has both a calming and soothing effect on the skin; sandalwood is also woody, possessing a spicy element that works to relax the mind and body. Together, they produce a fruity, aromatic smell that has similar traits to Snowcake but with a more boozy, masculine smell.
Strangely, this soap does not feature any benzoin resinoid. I say this because it does have a strong note of marzipan, which is very similar to how Snowcake smells because of the aforementioned ingredient being present. This is one product that I can see dividing Lush fans - it's one that will really appeal to some consumers, whereas others will find it rather nasty and too much like food to want to use it on their skin.
One of my disappointments with this soap is that it's a very ugly combination of brown, white and yellow - nothing like the beautiful multicoloured, multi-layered Christmas Cake that my mum makes every year. Having said that, the idea is that it's supposed to resemble a Christmas cake through its scent, more than its physical design. I can't really imagine Lush being able to pull off a direct replica without making it appear like a gimmick, or adding in unnecessary ingredients which would just add to the price and take away from its usability overall.
In the shower, Christmas Cake Slice Soap works as most of Lush's other soaps do, in that it produces a good amount of lather when you stimulate the block between your hands. The aroma is definitely a very robust one and lingers on your skin and in the bathroom for a long while after you have exited the room. For this reason, unless you're a fan of scents similar to that of Snowcake, and enjoy using them all year around, this soap is very limited to the colder months of the year. I cannot imagine this being very pleasant when used during the summer months, which limits how often this soap can be used throughout the rest of the year.
Despite all of these issues, my skin did feel rather smooth once I had exited the shower and there was a slight woody, almond smell left on my skin afterwards. In addition, the waxy and rather robust consistency of this soap means that my 100g block lasted throughout the whole of December and January, and is still going strong some three months later. It's a soap that, as long as you pat it down between uses, could last you upwards of five to six months, making it great value for money.
While the productivity of my original piece may have given me a soured impression of this product to begin with, I was slightly more engaged and more impressed with the fresher piece that the Lush Kitchen produced last year. Having said that, the smell of the soap limits when it can be used, and it's also not an aroma that I particularly want to use very often in the shower - especially not when there is any hint of warmer weather to come. For this reason, I will continue to appreciate my single piece for now. However, it is not something I would buy again.
Quantitative Ingredients: Water, Propylene Glycol, Rapeseed Oil; Sunflower Oil; Coconut Oil, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Coco-Sulfate, Organic Aloe Vera Extract, Almond Oil, Vetivert Oil, Cedarwood Oil, Sodium Chloride, Cinnamal, Linalool, Colour 42090, Gardenia Extract, Colour 14700, Colour 17200, Titanium Dioxide.
2016 Price: £4.50 for 100g