For a long time, body wash and lotion didn’t feel like particularly sexy parts of your skincare arsenal. They were so quotidian that it was kind of hard to make them feel like anything other than what they are: daily necessities. But in an era with an elastic definition of self-care — and a laser-trained focus on only using the best and most sustainable materials available — that’s changing. And that energy is part of what set the table for Nécessaire, a new line of body wash, body lotion and personal lubricant that made its debut earlier this month.
The line, started by Into the Gloss co-founder Nick Axelrod and long-time Esteé Lauder executive Randi Christiansen, only offers three products right now, but all of them are thoroughly considered. The body washes ($22), available fragrance-free or lightly scented with sandalwood or eucalyptus, is made without the harmful surfactants you’ll find in drugstore brands. The lotion ($25) rubs in without the greasy, heavy feeling common in so many skin protectors. And both of them are crafted with a pH score in mind, information Nécessaire puts front and center on its packaging and website.
“Sex is just one thing you do with your body. All of these products are going on the same body.”
“We wanted to preserve and protect skin’s natural barrier while also delivering highly active ingredients to the skin,” Christiansen said. “Products with a pH level that closely matches the part of the body they’re meant for help skin to better recognize compatible ingredients and absorb them. We believe: better absorption, better results.”
That concern — and a battery of FDA-approval testing — also goes for Nécessaire’s Sex Gel ($20), a water-based lubricant that uses organic aloe and hyaluronic acid to, well, lubricate. Axelrod and Christiansen thought it was important to market it in the same way as the other products.
“Sex is just one thing you do with your body — and there no reason why sex products should be sold on the bottom shelf of aisle 12 in the drugstore, while other body products are in a different aisle,” Axelrod said. “And it doesn’t need to have sterile or ‘kama sutra’ esque branding. All of these products are going on the same body.”
“We also wanted to bring a new level of design to the category,” Christiansen said. “To create a product that can actually add to the look of your vanity or nightstand.”
“And it won’t stain your sheets!” Axelrod added emphatically. “I’ve had too many fancy sheets stained by silicone and oil-based lubes.”
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