With an abundance of colorful subtropical fruits and flowers, the Florida Keys are rich in soothing organic and sustainable ingredients for infusing luxury skin care and bath products.
Easily ordered online, these products make great holiday gifts. They provide a welcome way to create an at-home spa experience that evokes warm, fragrant memories of the Keys.
The Keys Salt Scrub, launched in 2012 by Upper Keys resident Laura Maddison and made in a state-certified facility in Key Largo, combines salts,100 percent coconut oil and other natural ingredients to cleanse and exfoliate skin. These unique salt scrubs, said to help skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis, have five tropical scents: pineapple, coconut, mango coconut, Key lime and lavender.
The Keys Salt Scrub products can be found in restaurants and boutiques throughout the island chain. Crafted in small batches, with antibacterial and antimicrobial properties, they use a proprietary blend called The Secret Lessoily® Formula.
Chemical- and cruelty-free, these all-natural scrubs are designed to rejuvenate, soothe and moisturize while neutralizing lingering odors from onion and garlic. Many Keys businesses provide the scrubs in restrooms for patrons. Spoons are included with orders, and 3.4-ounce travel sizes are offered.
Purely Paradise Natural Bath Products, developed by Lower Keys resident Crystal Ruffo, features all handcrafted, organic artisan bath creations including whimsically shaped tropical soaps and facial and body products. Soaps include conch shells, flip flops, dolphins, turtles and even six-toed cats — a reminder of Ernest Hemingway’s famed felines.
Products contain no artificial colors or preservatives, and can include proprietary scents of unisex Key West Breeze and Island Fruit with mango and papaya. Creams are custom-blended using natural butters and essential oils such as myrrh, frankincense, pink grapefruit oil, anise and peppermint. Additional creams are intended to relieve pain, eczema and psoriasis. There’s even a natural insect repellant made from shea butter and jojaba oils.
Ruffo also has a pet shampoo made from goat’s milk, shea butter and essential oils to calm doggies’ skin irritations.
A long-standing company founded in Key West offers skin care and bath lines scented and infused with aloe.
Key West Aloe, launched nearly 50 years ago, was the country’s first to manufacture its own skin care products using pure aloe vera gel. The company offers a wide variety of sophisticated skin and spa products with scents of lemon eucalyptus, pink grapefruit, blood orange, frangipani, mango, coconut and Key lime.
New are a quenching anti-aging moisturizing gel and a hydrating matrix. For men, there’s a shave cream, aftershave gel and balm.
Key West Aloe was founded 1971 by residents Frank Romano and Joe Liszka, who opened the Key West Fragrance & Cosmetic Factory. Today, the company bills itself as producing the world’s largest selection of aloe vera-based products and skin care with more than 20 antioxidant and mineral ingredients.
Whatever you choose as skin care gifts, on your next trip to the Florida Keys & Key West, plan to purchase and use a reef-safe sunscreen. Please avoid using sunscreens with compounds such as avobenzone, oxybenzone, octisalate, octinoxate or octocrylene to help preserve the environmental treasure that is Florida’s Coral Reef.