The original Vitabath Bath & Shower Geleé is such a familiar item, standing there in its clover-green label on the drugstore shelf, that we might not even really see it anymore. It's a classic that's worth keeping in mind, however, and now Vitabath offers a new range of fragranced bath and body products in four scent families: Fruit Fanatic, Spa Day, In Bloom and Cupcake Couture. I'll probably pass on that last one, just because I'm not really a fan of dessert-y body products, but some of the fruit scents sound fun (especially Wild Red Cherry and Pomegranate & Blood Orange), and I've enjoyed sampling a few items from the In Bloom and Spa Day lines.
Since this has been a sticky, hot month or so, I've been reaching for cool, greenish scents, and Vitabath's Spa Day collection offers several. I like Citron Leaves, a bright-and-light blend of verbena and lemongrass that gives an instant sense of refreshment. Green Tea & Sage is clean and herbal, with just a faint hint of something musky-woodsy beneath its smooth tea notes. (The other Spa Day blends, which I haven't tried, are Lavender Chamomile and Cucumber & White Tea.)
My possible favorite from this new Vitabath line is Ivy & Lily from the In Bloom collection. It's a little stronger than Citron Leaves or Green Tea & Sage, but it's still not overpowering. It's a dewy fragrance with sheer white floral notes and green leafy notes, like a garden after a summer rain; it would layer perfectly under Annick Goutal Eau de Camille. For an even more summery feeling, there's Beach Blossom, an ozonic-marine floral; it's not exactly natural-smelling, but it's nostalgic in a 1990s way, because it reminds me that Issey Miyake's L'Eau d'Issey is still influential on the wider fragrance industry. And of course I can't ignore something called Nouveau Rose! This scent is a surprisingly lush tea rose; when I wore the lotion, I almost didn't need to apply any perfume afterwards. (The fourth In Bloom fragrance blend is Asian Orchid & Coconut.)
Lastly, a word about the products' formulas: both the Body Wash and the Hydrating Lotion are free of sulfates, parabens, propylene glycol, mineral oil and other ingredients that have ended up on some consumer watch-lists. Yet the Body Wash lathers generously, and the Hydrating Lotion is a very effective medium-weight cream. It's good to see larger companies finding ways to make these tweaks to their ingredients lists. I don't always shop high-end or "niche," and I like to have choices at the drugstore and other mass-market retailers. Here, we're seeing new formulas and new scents from a time-tested brand, a combination that I like.
Vitabath Moisturizing Body Wash ($7.99 for 360 ml) and Hydrating Lotion ($7.99 for 360 ml), as well as Refreshing Fragrance Mist ($9.99 for 236 ml) are available at the Vitabath website as well as select K Mart, Walgreens, Ulta Beauty, and Rite Aid stores.