Ten things you don’t know about shower jellies

Jelly! What’s the first thing that comes to mind? If you’re older than 10 (or have at one time or another been to a 10th birthday party) you’re likely imagining it on a plate. Wobbling peaks of lurid jelly seem a staple foodstuff for most young partygoers. But, it’s usually edible, and it doesn’t usually contain red wine.

As if Lush’s 10th birthday would be in any way predictable…

1. Shower jellies were Lush’s birthday invention in 2005

In the hazy summer of 2005 — the year of YouTube’s creation, as well as Tom Cruise leaping on a sofa in the name of love — Lush turned 10. Followers of the brand were invited to ‘Join us for jellies and nice cream’ with the introduction of six, wobbling newcomers containing ingredients like boozy red wine (Bada Bing Bada Boom), fresh strawberries (Strawberry Twin Tub) and cooling fresh cucumber juice (Spank Me With Saplings). Shower jellies had officially arrived; the world just wasn’t quite ready for them yet.

2. At first, they were sliced to order

Huge moulds about as long as desktop keyboards were served naked in shops and portioned up for those early, intrepid explorers. Although the wobbling, prodding and poking was a lot of fun, taking them home without packaging proved to be a little tricky. Before long, a solution was found in the shape of 100% recyclable pots.

3. They’ve taken many different shapes

Not all jellies are created equal. From winged bats with scent like cola and bobble-hatted snowmen to sugar skulls packed with lime oil, there’s no one-size-fits-all. You often need to be quick to catch them though; many arrive as seasonal exclusives over periods such as Christmas, spring and halloween.

4. Every single one is vegetarian

Many of the slippery sweet treats you’ll find along the supermarket aisles contain gelatine, which is a setting agent made from boiled animal bones. Lush shower jellies on the other hand are 100% vegetarian, and almost all are vegan too. Those that are vegetarian contain ingredients such as honey water (found in Whoosh).

5. The wobble comes from seaweed

If you’ve ever felt the reassuring, slimy squelch of seaweed at the beach, you might be able to guess what Lush use as their vegan alternative to gelatine. Mineral-rich carrageenan extract, derived from seaweed, forms the unique solid base of the entire jelly range.

6. It’s surprisingly moisturising

Carrageenan extract arrives at Lush in versatile powder form. It’s fantastically softening, so when you step out from under the shower spray your skin will feel beautifully smooth and hydrated. The resulting solid base it also useful for carrying notoriously hard-to-hold ingredients like fresh fruit juices and essential oils. This means you can enjoy their benefits and bright, enticing scents while you’re doing it standing up. Just grasp on tight!

7. When they say fresh, they mean fresh

Turn over the pot of Whoosh shower jelly and you’ll read of fresh grapefruit, fresh organic lemons and limes, chopped and squeezed for their cleansing, brightening juices. Lemon Melt shower jelly, which you can sometimes catch as an exclusive product in the Lush Kitchen, even contains a slice of citrus whole! It’s accepted wisdom that eating an apple picked straight off the tree is best practice for keeping healthy. Fresh, handmade cosmetics are much the same; essential oils are most potent when freshly extracted from their source and fresh, raw ingredients — that haven’t broken down or aged — retain their active properties.

8. They’re designed to be chilled

According to Lush co-founder Mark Constantine, shower jellies can provide an ‘instant sauna and roll in the snow, but just in the shower!’ Alternating hot and cold while washing is a bathing practice that has a far-reaching history into countries from Japan to Finland (where there are an estimated two million saunas for a population of 5.3 million). It’s an energising way to wake up the body and feels particularly refreshing in the balmy heat of summer days.

Keep your jelly in the fridge or freezer between washes to enjoy an enlivening shower far simpler than visiting a sauna! 93,000 Miles also contains ingredients like warming cinnamon leaf oil and stimulating peppermint to ease muscles that have been hard at work.

9. You can use them in lots of different ways

Shower jellies are a fantastic, versatile alternative to soaps and shower gels. You can: use them from head to toe; squish them into a pouf for a thick, creamy textured lather; chill them in the fridge or freezer for reviving cooling; or get up close and personal by lathering them straight over your body.

10. 1,309,770 jellies were picked up globally in 2015, over double that of the year before!

It appears that the solid, naked jelly revolution has begun…