A post on lavender fields, L’Occitane, and… joint damage?

This past week, I discovered a rather unfortunate new opponent: hand cream packaging. I think I fought pretty valiantly, and I was able to get it open, but at the end of the day – I have to admit my defeat.

As much as I love the rustic look of the L’Occitane Lavande tube, it takes me three or four tries to get this open when my joints are particularly inflamed – and alright, so maybe, maybe I will admit that I resorted to dental intervention. (It’s like divine intervention, but… toothier.)

I know it’s not a big deal for someone with healthy joints – I used to use L’Occitane’s similarly-packaged shea formula with zero issues – but I find myself wishing there was another option. Perhaps a snap lid for the travel size, or a larger twist lid, or even just a big ‘ol pump bottle for the kitchen countertop!

Anyhow, while I’m not in love with the packaging, I definitely don’t hate the product. It’s less “sour” than a lot of the other lavender products I’ve tried, and the super-hydrating L’Occitane hand cream formula doesn’t disappoint.

There are a number of Lavender-based L’Occitane products already, this one included, and they’re adding three more to the range this August – an eau de cologne, a body & massage gel, and a roll-on. More on that below! (Sorry, sorry, this post length is getting epic.)

L’Occitane Lavande Hand Cream ingredients

New August 2011

  • Eau de Cologne, 300 ML ($54)
  • Body & Massage Gel, 200 ML ($38)
  • Relaxing Roll-on, 10ML ($10)

Lavender fields in Haute-Provence

(Okay, maybe I should have started the post with these – the images are absolutely gorgeous. L’Occitane exclusively uses Lavandula Angustifolia grown at least 800 metres above sea level, and if the resulting products are any evidence to the fact, I think it’s safe to say that these fields smell amazing.)

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  • This is a fave of mine. Sorry you had to resort to dental intervention. Plastic, Y U NO TASTE GOOD?
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  • It's sad that you had to strain your fingers and wrist to get the product out. LOL @ dental intervention!

    I'd love to be in that fragrant field!
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    • Not "strain" so much as "use with high levels of dexterity" – the product comes out easily and all, and the lid's not tight or anything, it's just so tiny! >.<

  • Nina

    Damn right it's tiny! Whenever I tried to open a L'occitane hand cream, my inner self always screamed "IIIII HAAAATE YOUUUUU YOU DAMN LIL' THING!" because I couldn't keep it between my fingers, and when I did manage to keep it and open the tube, always dropped the lid on the floor. The result? I don't use their creams anymore ^^ On the other hand, is it too weird that I don't like lavender at all? But I gotta admit, the fields look amazing.

    • LOL, yes! The packaging's cute, but not exactly functional imo.

      I'm really not a lavender fan either, but I know people who are *crazy* about it! Objectively, I can recognize that this is a beautiful lavender (it's soft around the edges and has an almost "creamy" edge), but personally? Not a fan :P

  • In France, there were a few lavender fields…it smells so. damn. good. I have to go smell these! And lol at dental intervention…I have to do that sometimes, too, and I always feel absolutely ridiculous afterward. Toothy people unite! :D
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    • Jealous! I have to admit, I've never been in a field of just one flower – I can only imagine how gorgeous it would be =)

  • jhr2678

    I have had similar issues with opening my accrylic paints lately (I am not a painter but am taking a class in it)

    I know it is likely not something you want to cary around, but have found that those rubberized jar openers make this task much easier. Also, if you do not have that a rubber band wrapped around the lid makes opening easier. I agree though, they should make these things easier to open.

    • Thanks for the tip! :) I'll definitely try a rubber band – I don't know why it didn't occur to me sooner >.<

  • I love the regular hand cream and since I need to get some more, I shall get this one instead! I'm really curious about their skincare lately and am thinking of trying out some stuff but HOLY HECK it's expensive stuff!
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    • Man, ikr?! O.o There are a couple lines that are vaguely reasonable (Red Rice, Verdon), but the Immortelle products… *blanches* (This sounds particularly fascinating, though!)

      I'd love to know what you think if you do give L'Occitane a try =)

  • Kate & Zena

    Oh, I hate tubes that make my wrists hurt. I usually resort to the rubber band trick before I use my teeth. The rubber band works 99.9% of the time. Rubber is godly.

    I'm with you with pain. I took a kayaking class yesterday and I'm dying from pain today. It does NOT help that Zena decided to dig her four hare-like footsies into my lower back plus use that same part of my as a head rest. Pain is kind of an understatement at the moment. Typing hurts at the moment!

    • Ack, that sounds awful! *sends hugs* Hope you're feeling a bit more human soon :P

      • Kate & Zena

        I'm not feeling so pincushiony (I guess that's the best metaphor, but you know what I mean) now. My shoulders hurt a bit still if I move them a specific way, but it's my wrists still! Those suckers always take the longest! You aren't supposed to use them, I guess, in kayaking, but your torso. Of course, no one gets that the first time and because I got the weakest wrists I'm the one with the most pain. They don't hurt as bad, but they still have deep spasms every once in a while.

        My dad elected to tell me not to choke my kayak paddle until half way through or I'd have sore wrists. It's like, "Well, WHY DIDN'T YOU TELL ME THAT IN THE FIRST PLACE?!?!?!" It would have made my life a wee easier.

        • Sorry to hear that, Kate! :(

          Have you thought about splinting for some extra support when you're going to be using your wrists a lot? I've been wearing sleeping splints (at night) & icing recently, and the difference was noticeable right off the bat – any discomfort and hassle that comes with ice and aides is well worth the payoff : ) I can't rave enough!

          • Kate & Zena

            I actually have a system that works pretty well when they hurt. I initially wear the splints for an hour, ice for thirty. Then I wear the splints for thirty, ice for thirty, splint for thirty, yadda yadda yadda as long I can remember to keep up the system. Heat works really well too, as long as it's really deep heat, like the machines they have for deep heat in physical therapy buildings. I'm going to buy some wrist warmer splint things from the Etsy seller theferriswheels (they make a migraine pack that's GODLY. I own one) and see if that works in terms of heat.

            I'm not allowed to wear my splints until I actually feel pain or I actually manage to injure myself with the splints, believe or not. I tend to wear my splints too tight (I like to feel my splints!) and so wearing them when they don't hurt is a bad thing for me. I have been wearing them overnight actually and it helps.

            But, when you kayak, you can't exactly wear splints as they aren't exactly WATERPROOF. Kayaking is, um, WET. Really, really wet. I wouldn't have gotten so darn wet if my mother hadn't insisted on changing seats (we were in a three-person kayak. SHE wanted to be in the front where I was.) You happen to know how clumsy I am. She had no problem switching; I fell in three foot icky at the bottom, COLD water. I was rather p.o'd at her because I was kayaking in a puddle the depth of Lake Heron practically for the rest of the session. That and she went the speed of a slug. I'm a speed demon; slugs don't interest me (or people who start fast then quickly slooooooooooooow down to slugdom. My mom is both.) I admit it, I have zero tolerance at times. It was then that I had zero tolerance. Puddles and slowpokes don't make a good combination!


            How?! How did I forget that water is wet AGAIN?! -.-

  • Alison

    "Divine intervention, only toothier". Haha! Story of an RA-sufferer's LIFE! Love that you're catering to us in our twenties with arthritic thumbs, Rae. <3

    • :D

      I'm always pleased to be able to do it, Alison — chronic illness can be a pretty lonely place on your own. If I can make just one person point at their monitor and go oh hey, me too; that's awesome!, then my day is made.

      (I guess a lot of the time, that person is you. So, thanks for being awesome in the comment threads, I guess :p)