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My neighbours son is a typical teenager therefore I am kept awake until gone midnight on some occasions listening to screeching cars in computer games, American accents from late-night cheesy soaps, screams of chainsaw victims or him saying "Huh?" or "Whuh?" to his Mother when she shouts from her bedroom to his to "Go to bed NAH".
Earplugs aren't an option, I tried them a few times and yes they do block out all sound but I'm not a fan of these - who knows when you might hear something and have to be awake to react to it like Ninja. I've tried those sprays which you douse your pillow and bed linen with and yes, they do work but then when the other half comes to bed he either a) has a sneezing fit or b) says "wossat smell?", both of which result in my swearing violently at him for having the audacity to wake me. I've also tried those herbal tablets and ended up having a fabulous sleep ……and bumbling round like a cross between Mr Magoo and a zombie for the whole of the next day so they were out of the question too.
In Boots stocking up on shampoo and conditioner I meandered around the vitamin and herbal potion section. After smirking at the tablets called Nux Vomica (I'd rather stay ill thanks), my gaze fell upon a small round metal tin called Badger Sleep Balm. I'd heard of Badger Balm before but never seen this version so thought I'd be wild, reckless and live life on the edge and buy it.
It's quite a girly looking tin as you can see from the pic and the design on the lid is quite cutsie - a badger on his/her back, slumbering under the moon. Ahh, feeling sleepy already. The writing on the front tells me it's a 'calming sleep enhancer' that weighs 21g. The UK distributor has stuck a massive label on the back of the tin which tells me it lasts 12 months once opened and lists all the ingredients which to be honest are all oils so don't use if you are allergic to:- Organic extra virgin olive oil Caster oil Beeswax Balsam Fir Ginger Bergamont Lavender Rosemary The tin is sealed from prying poking fingers with one of those clear plastic shrink wrap thingies but find the perforations, pull down and you're in. God, this stuff smells lovely!! It's one of those products that you sniff and say "Oh, that smell reminds me of….." but then you can't think of what. To me the main oils I could smell were the lavender and rosemary but that could be because I have no idea what balsam and bergamot smell like if they came up to me and slapped me.
~ The sleep test ~
Bedtime rolls around and I get out my little tin of balm and following the usage instructions on the base of the tin apply the balm by wiping my finger across it and then applying to temples (it does say you can put it on your lips but I wasn't keen on that). The golden balm melts immediately on contact with your finger and whilst you can see a slight film of oil on your skin it isn't overly greasy. I put a dab on each temple, shoulder and wrist and snuggled down for a good nights sleep. I was concerned that the oils would be quite strong but once they are on the skin you can smell them but they are very faint.
The oils didn't bring my skin out in a rash nor did they leave any marks on my bedding.
I can't imagine many men buying this product unless they radically re-design the tin as it's quite girlie - maybe a snarling badger in combats holding a machine gun? But hey, it works and not just once in a fluky kind of way either. I tried it several nights and was zzz-ing away in minutes and this was on nights when I wasn't even feeling remotely sleepy so it's pretty good stuff. The only times the balm didn't really work were on a few nights when my mind was racing away nineteen to the dozen but I think nothing short of a frying pan over the head would have worked then.
~ All about the Badger ~
I visited the Badger website and discovered that Badger has recently signed up with the International Leaping Bunny Programme (www.leapingbunny.org) and this certifies that Badger do not test their products on animals. Over 70% of their products are organic too plus the tins the balm come in are recyclable.
I also never realised exactly how many Badger products there are out there - although I suspect that not all of them are available in the U.K. Their balms include Foot Balm, Body Balm, Baby Balm and Winter Wonder Balm - that's just four out of the twenty listed on their site. They also manufacture sun blocks, lip balms, soaps, garden hand care sets aswell as massage oils.
A little bit of extra information to all of you out there who like to buy - or would like to buy - cruelty free products. The Corporate Standard of Compassion for Animals (CCIC) was launched in 1996 and in order for a company to be on their register of Approved Companies they have to prove that they do not, at any stage of manufacture, test their product/s on animals. Some products which claim to be Not Tested on Animals or even as Cruelty Free actually contain ingredients which have been tested on animals. The only way to ensure 100% cruelty free is to see if the product / supplier is on the CCIC list which is on their website. The Leaping Bunny Logo is used throughout the UK, Canada, Europe and the United States of America.
~ Availability ~
I bought mine in Boots for around £4.99 - yes, fairly pricey but a little goes a long way. I've also seen this in Waitrose for a similar price.
~ Recommended? ~
If you occasionally have difficulty sleeping then this could be the product for you. What have you got to lose (apart from the dark circles under your eyes?).
would like to try this, i am known as the earplug queen and am getting steadily worse!
kat74_uk 25.06.2008 15:50
I am so glad you read one of my reviews- which brought me to your reviews- wow- this is a great, funny and thourough review- so I gave you an excep for it. I have chronic insomnia- so I am totally going to get some and give it a try. x
Collingwood21 04.02.2008 21:49
Given that it took me three hours to get to sleep last night, and then Other Half thought he would have a good old snore, this seems *very* appealing to me right now.