Sunday, August 14, 2011

After The Initial Scent, "Frosting Forever, "Might Be A Worthwhile 3-In-1... But It's A Lot To Go Through!

The Good: Good scent after the initial one, Versatility, Success at cleaning all over
The Bad: Initial scent, PRICE!
The Basics: The awful initial scent and the price eliminate the benefits this 3-in-1 offers in getting the user clean and smelling yummy.

As a reviewer, I am eager to write in categories that are new to me and I started writing reviews on health and beauty products and Celestial Seasonings teas. One of the first products I enthusiastically reviewed from outside my traditional comfort zone was Bath and Body Works' Cinnamon Bun Heaven 3-in-1. Recalling how much I enjoyed that product, I found myself eager to find more when I was near a Bath & Body Works again recently. They were out, but in their clearance stack of Temptations products, there was Frosting Forever 3-in-1. Recalling how I had warned my readers that there was a product that looked like Cinnamon Bun Heaven and having been happy with that 3-in-1, I gave Frosting Forever a cursory sniff and bought it.

Here's the thing: it's near impossible to truly smell anything in Bath & Body Works because the whole place is filled with scents and colors and it's a bit overwhelming. When I took my first shower with this product, I began to regret my decision.

Frosting Forever is well-named, once the initial scent wears off, as its scent is precisely the aroma of a vanilla frosting. It's the vanilla frosting atop a carrot cake, fresh-baked. Anyone who has ever had a wonderful experience in a bakery or bistro that was dominated by cake as is bound to have a wonderful reaction to the aroma of this product.

That is, after the initial scent. The first scent that comes out of the bottle is a throat-closing, acrid scent. "Chemical" is all my mind registers. It's like my olfactory nerves shoot a message to my brain while it is first smelling this nasty-scented fluid and it reboots my brain to register it as a frosting scent instead. Seriously, there is a plastic, burning, sulfurous, dangerous smell that puffs out of the bottle each and every time that makes my hair stand up on the back of my neck - even in the shower - before the frosting scent kicks in. As I write this, my mind is forcing me to type "tires." I don't know why, but there's something associated with that scent that is triggering it, so there you go. The initial scent lasts approximately ten seconds before my brain registers this as frosting.

As I surmised in my prior review, I have long suspected there is little chemical difference between shampoo, body wash and bubble bath and this 3-in-1 product seems to confirm that. It is a body wash, a shampoo and a bubble bath all in one. Bath and Body Works charges $12 for a 16 oz. bottle of the product, at least when I bought it. Rather cleverly, the clearance section still had Frosting Forever at $12, they just wanted people to know it's on the way out. And frankly, it's easy to see why by the scent!

As a shampoo, Frosting Forever was fine to use, after the initial scent changed over to the scent it is supposed to be. Despite the bulky shape of the bottle (I've used it for over a week now and the only reason I haven't dropped it is that I got used to how to hold it from my prior product experience), the cap is a simple hinge spout that makes getting the product out very easy and getting the bottle closed equally easy. Not having to screw the cap on or off means it's easy to simply open and close with one hand while depositing a quantity into the other hand before putting it in your hair.

I have rather long hair and I found I had to use a whole palmful of the Frosting Forever in order to get it to lather through all of my hair. Because there is only sixteen ounces in the bottle, the speed at which I went through the product at the first two days alarmed me some. I discovered that I could get away with using a little less than a palmful of the Frosting Forever and diluting it a little in my palm before applying it to my hair and it stretched a little farther (hey, why not get the most out of it!?). I ought to be able to make the bottle last at least two months as a shampoo.

As a shampoo, Frosting Forever cleaned my hair wonderfully with no residue. I have dry hair and the product did not dry it out more, nor leave a greasy residue. The result was very clean hair that smelled fresh and vaguely like cinnamon buns! As well, the product did not dry out my scalp. The product is mild on the eyes, which I discovered when I got some of the lather in my eye. It does not taste like frosting, for those who might be curious. Frosting Forever's scent does not withstand exercise that involves perspiring, but then, why wouldn't you wash your hair after that kind of exercise?

As a body wash, Frosting Forever is wonderful and possibly the best value from this product. I use a very discreet dollop of this 3-in-one when I am using it as a body wash. I'm rather tall and my "discreet dollop" is about the diameter of the hole in a compact disc. Applied to a washcloth, lufa or latex pouf, it lathered up quickly with such a small quantity. I've been using my lufa mitt (reviewed here!) and that lathers up with less than a quarter-sized dollop quite well and stretches for a full washing.

As a body wash, it worked very well, not drying out my skin at all. It appears to have gotten me clean and I noticed no adverse effects. After a week of using it as a body wash, I'm satisfied that it is getting me clean, not reacting to my skin (I do not have sensitive skin), and not causing any problems. I have cuts on my hands from work almost constantly and this was mild enough that it did not bother my wounds.

One of the nice effects of the Frosting Forever as a body wash that I noticed right away was that the scent lasts on the skin. Even after the first washing with this product, the scent permeated my skin and remained there. The scent endured without significant fading for one normal day. I have a night job at a hellish place that smells of oil and human misery and whenever I escape into the bathroom to wash up, I find myself able to smell my frosting-scented skin, which allows me to escape from that place for a few moments anyway. This is quite an accomplishment as I wear rubber gloves constantly and until I started using Frosting Forever, my hands just smelled (and tasted - yech!) of latex gloves.

As a bubble bath, it was wonderful, scenting the entire bathroom and upstairs of my house with the scent of frosting! The suds that the 3-in-1 created as a bath were wonderful and ample, despite my using only one capful of the product in my bath (the directions recommend two to three). As before, there were no adverse skin reactions, but marinating in my tub for an hour with this did leave the scent on me for an entire evening.

Frosting Forever is a mixed bag. It works at cleaning. However, the price is stifling and the initial scent is so terribly unpleasant that I cannot in good conscience recommend it. Bath And Body Works gets a lot of its products right, but this one is just not one of them. It's easy to see why this one might get discontinued. The novelty of it wears off quickly (unlike Cinnamon Bun Heaven, which I'm still looking for a year later!) and if I wasn't working at a place that smelled even worse than the initial scent that comes out of this bottle, I would certainly get rid of it.

For other 3-in-1 products from Bath and Body Works, be sure to visit my reviews of:
Cinnamon Bun Heaven
Orange Freeze
Sassy Strawberry Mint


For other health and beauty product reviews, please click here to see what I've written!

© 2011, 2008 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.

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