Cooling & Soothing Organic Skincare: Gel/ Toner * Product Battle #6

When it comes to breakouts or simply to sensitive skin currently out of balance, it’s good to have a cooling & calming treatment handy. 

Here are 3 of them, all with an excellent Codecheck score, in an epic product battle.

Looking for a soothing, cooling/ calming skincare product? For an organic after-shave for sensitive skin? Well, look no further. Having sampled my way through more than a dozen of efficient products designed to soothe irritated skin (products that go beyond moisturisers but rather are your S.O.S. squad), I’m reviewing three favourites here. I hope this can help you – even if none of those is right for you, maybe you’ll see how to and what to look for to find what suits your individual needs.

If you’ve been around here for a while, you’ll remember my moisturiser quest: a few years ago, somehow, anything would’ve given me a breakout. It truly was a game of hit or miss. Sometimes my skin would look great for some two weeks only to completely break out later. And while the cause for that skin condition got eliminated eventually (=wheat allergy), it took me another little while to grasp that wheat-based skincare ingredients, above all Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, would irritate my skin as well.

Lesson learned: if all skincare products end up irritating your skin, it’s time to stop asking your dermatologist for help and to see another specialist.”

These days, wheat and its friends can only sneakily end up on my plate, and if they do, I need something to support my skin through a cycle of inflammation, blemishes, as well as general roughness and dryness. I also prefer to use gels or liquids to not irritate my skin mechanically (which could easily be the case with masks or creams/ balms).

Soothing, cooling and calming skincare product best-of: versatile, 100% green & gorgeous, suitable for women & men!”

In 2015, I’ve been sampling several products, and three have made it onto my Best Of list that you’re about to see. All of them are perfectly versatile and unisex, one even doubles as a light deodorant and soothing after-shave.

And here are the hero products – green, fully vegan, free from conflict palm oil:

Santaverde, aloe vera gel pur
CMD Naturkosmetik, Siliciumgel
NB: this is a silicon gel, where silicon is a skin-loving mineral, and not the synthetic compound silicone we seek to avoid when choosing organics
Dr. Alkaitis, Organic Soothing Gel

So let the battle commence!


Santaverde, aloe vera gel pur
Ingredients, Review & Rating

This fragrance-free gel is composed of 90% aloe vera juice – such is the brand’s promise – and is from the Santaverde body range. I’ve been using this on my face as well and to as much effect. The gel texture is pleasantly cooling, though somewhat drying on the skin. The ingredients are:
Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Alcohol, Sodium Lactate, Xanthan Gum, Chondrus Crispus Powder, Glyceryl Caprylate, Levulinic Acid, Glucose, P-Anisic Acid, Sodium Levulinate, Glycerin, Silver Sulfate, Sodium Hydroxide.
Packaging & price: 50 ml, approx. €15.

CMD Naturkosmetik, Siliciumgel
Ingredients, Review & Rating

This one is a liquid gel (Santaverde is thicker, this one is runnier), however it has a lot of anti-inflammatory benefits. It can be used as a cooling after-shave product that supports the skin’s healing processes, applied as a light deodorant (which is handy after an armpit shave, doesn’t it?) and will calm insect stings, inflammations, breakouts – it’s just roundabout amazing, well, unless of course you hate roses. For it has a fairly strong natural fragrance. So if roses are red but not to you, this is not your jam. Or gel.
Aqua, Hydrated Silica, Xanthan Gum, Phytic Acid, Parfum (natural).
Packaging & price: 200 ml, approx. €7.

Dr. Alkaitis, Organic Soothing Gel
Ingredients, Review & Rating

Despite its name, this product isn’t a gel at all but rather a toner. The priciest of the three, it comes with a typical Dr. Alkaitis “all ingredients are active ingredients”-formula, and can be used to calm pretty much any irritation – eczema, rosacea, acne, after-shave rash, harsh peelings etc. It has the most efficient moisturising properties of the three products reviewed here. Ingredients:
Aloe Barbadensis Gel, Hamamelis Virginiana Distillate, Alcohol, Urtica Dioica Extract, Chamomilla Recutita Extract, Commiphora Abyssinica Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis Extract, Styrax Benzoin Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis Extract, Boswelia Carterii Extract, Foeniculum Vulgare Extract, Melissa Officinalis Extract, Fucus Vesiculosus Extract, Nereocystis Luetkeana Extract, Chondrus Crispus Extract, Palmaria Palmata Extract, Ilex Paraguariensis Extract, Chlorella Pyrenoidosa Extract, Sodium Pantothenate, Myrciaria Dubla Extract, Malpighia Glabra Extract, Aroma.
Packaging & price: 200 ml, approx. €49.CMD-santaverde-dralkaitis-soothing-swatch1. CMD, 2. Dr. Alkaitis, 3. Santaverde.

Product Fight Club Round 1:
Top Features

It has the most certifications: vegan, Natrue, Leaping Bunny, and is focussed on a single ingredient. The rest of the formula maintains the integrity of the aloe vera juice. It’s also the only fragrance-free product of the three.

Oh so ultra-versatile (moisturising, calming, cooling, deodorising…), affordable, ICADA certified.

Dr. Alkaitis:
Almost as versatile as its CMD contender, although it can’t double as a deo. The dispenser is the best among the three products: while both the Santaverde and the CMD gels can spill a bit, the precious drops of the Dr. Alkaitis toner will only be lost if you aim at the air instead of the palm of your hand…

Product Fight Club Round 2:

The single thing that made me re-read the ingredients list is the product name: aloe gel pur. Pur means just that, pure, and a pure aloe gel is a wordsmith’s creation since aloe juice is used. So of course you need additives (Xanthan, Chondrus Crispus Powder aka Irish Moss) to make a gel out of it. It doesn’t make the formula bad though.
However, one of those additives is silver sulfate, an antibacterial ingredient. Some will not like silver on their skin, but I’ll stick with current scientific knowledge which suggests that no damage can occur from an occasional topical application in a skincare formula.

This gel is fairly runny and the bottle opening is rather wide, so spills – drying to matte white drops – are daily fare.
The aforementioned fragrance is not bad but needs some getting used to.

Dr. Alkaitis:
The brand has a strong green ethics, however, if you’re into certifications – there are none. So while I’m assuming that the “aroma” listed is a natural one, I can, in fact, only speculate.
The name does suggest a gel but the texture is definitely liquid, a toner with just slightly more substance than water (texture-wise, not regarding the effect obvs.).
Then the price tag of course. Yes, it is seriously wonderful and versatile and efficient and it lasts you quite a while but still, it’s a toner.CMD-silicon-santaverde-pure-aloe-dr-alkaitis-toner

Product Fight Club Round 3:
Who Wins? (On Points)

+ certifications, fragrance-free, soothing properties, cooling properties
– “define: pure”, slightly drying/ skin-tightening (so it’s not perfect under make-up, in particular under mineral foundations – unless of course on very oily skin)
Score: +4/-2

+ certified natural, soothing, cooling, versatile (insect bites, after-shave, moisturising, deodorising), affordable
– can temporarily stain floor & garments, strong fragrance
Score: +5/-2

Dr. Alkaitis:
+ extremely efficient on irritated skin, soothing, cooling, versatile (insect bites, after-shave, softens and moisturises skin)
– pricey, no certifications (aroma – ?)
Score: +4/-2

This “fight club” format makes clear, I hope, that there is no, can’t be any, perfect product to suit everyone. There are no easy ways. Eat clean, drink your water, don’t skip lunch, steer clear of toxins tangible or mental, be You – this is as simple as it’s terrifying. Take care, Adventurers!

P.S. Which would you choose? 😉CMD-santaverde-dralkaitis-soothing-skincare


Geeking out about all things truly green, healthy and ethical over at (Avatar illustration by A. Goncharenko)

2 Responses

  1. […] 2. Another powerhouse to protect you from all things inflammation and irritation is the Dr. Alkaitis Organic Soothing Gel. Based on aloe gel and infused with powerful botanicals and some grape alcohol, this super light gel imparting a noble aroma of elegant herbs and oils is an ideal after-shave product. Fully vegan, 100% food grade organic with 100% of ingredients being active ingredients, and suitable for all skin types (particularly formulated with rosacea, eczema, and acne in mind). Available via Amazingy. 120 ml, €69. [Organic Soothing Gel detailed review] […]

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