If you’re like me, you tend to do your grocery shopping in small batches rather than one whopper of a shop. I like to shop that way. It means the products are fresher off the shelves, and it provides me with more opportunities to suss out new and improved items.
I’m a real sucker for trying something new, and I sometimes even go back to a brand simply because its packaging has been revamped.
There, I said it. I’m occasionally motivated by the aesthetics of a product. Mind you, the contents have got to be excellent, too.
On the subject of quality contents, the Consumer Survey of Product Innovation has this month released its voted products of the year, and there are some absolute gems that I had to sample for myself.
‘Product of the Year’ is voted on six key factors: Relevance, Uniqueness, Excitement, Likeability, Distinctiveness and Innovation…
‘Product of the Year’ is voted on six key factors: Relevance (Is the product fulfilling a need or addressing a problem?); Uniqueness (Does is stand out and bring something new to the category?); Excitement (How excited are consumers to use the product?); Likeability (Does it deliver what the consumer wants?); Distinctiveness (Does it add something new to its category?); and Innovation (Is it an innovative product?).
Looking through the list of the best-voted products, there appears to be a couple of regularly recurring themes this year: eco-consciousness, health and well-being.
There were also the more familiar brands bringing fresher flavour to the kitchen, such as San Remo, Seeds of Change, and even trusty Gravox.
Thirteen out of the 35 winning categories sit within the ‘health’ segment, whether it is in the form of healthy snacks, digestive health, supplements, or oral care, and many of these tick the ‘eco’ boxes, too (see reviews below).
The results reflect recent research that reveals 82% of Australians have changed their eating habits in the past five years, with 86% trying to be more health-conscious in regards to their diet.
Says Product of the Year Director, Sarah Connelly, “We’re thrilled to see that healthier alternatives are increasingly available in stores as consumers are yearning for this. We’re also happy to see an increase in ‘self-care’ products as the importance placed on mental health and well-being in society continues to escalate. Not only will these products improve consumers’ quality of life, they are also becoming more affordable and accessible.”
Take these items, for example:
Green Choice Bathroom Cleaner by Coles
This product ticks so many eco-friendly boxes, you practically feel brilliant yourself cleaning the bathroom. It is made from plant-based ingredients (namely wild mint and lavender), contains natural fragrance oils, no artificial colours or preservatives, is biodegradable, chlorine- and ammonia-free, has no phosphates, and is septic-friendly. And comes in recyclable packaging. But does it work? You bet your bottom dollar it does. After enjoying a luxurious jacuzzi at home and draining the water from the tub, I spritzed this stuff on the porcelain then rinsed lightly. Et voila! A pristine tub, smelling as fresh as it looks spotless and shiny.
Red Wine Refining & Exfoliating Mask by Skin Nutrient
I’m actually allergic to red wine – well, some red wines – hence testing this product was going to be a bit risky. I dabbed a small amount with water on my neck for a few minutes (after all, if I did break into a bit of a rash, I could always pretend it was a love bite, lol). No problems with my skin, so I decided to go with the full mask. No problems there, either. Mind you, the directions did say to massage into the skin for 60 seconds, and I kind of just lathered it in softly. After rinsing with warm water and patting my face dry, I noticed a little more colour and glow in my skin. Not a bad little product (shaped like a mini goon bag, ironically) but I’d be more keen to trial other Skin Nutrient mask varieties.
Beauty Collagen Shot by Nature’s Way
I’m not sure if this product did the trick in making my face looking any younger or effervescent at the very least but I did feel good about drinking it. It was basically like taking a shot of wheatgrass or a mini energy drink, only with a tart berry flavour. The bottle says two take one shot (50ml) daily and I only got around to trialling two days of the collagen-infused liquid in a row. It would probably have had a better effect on me if I took the good stuff for at least a week.
Gut Relief with Prebiotics by Nutra-Life
Admittedly, I eat more rich food than I ought to and sometimes this can play havoc on my tummy. I used to have a stomach like iron and could eat anything I fancied but now I’ll sense a little reflux on occasion, usually, like I said, if the food’s been too rich. I got into the habit of taking Nutra-Life Gut Relief with Prebiotics regularly and found I experienced no tummy aches over that week. So I’m saying the stuff definitely works.
Choc Love Bites by Sophie Monk’s Slim Secrets
I once styled Sophie Monk for the cover of Cream magazine and I remember her being a fun-loving, clever girl. She looks like she’s doing well with her Slim Secrets range these days. The problem with the choc love bites, though, is that they melted in the sun whilst I was driving back from the post office where I’d collected my package from (it’s been 40-degree days in Perth). By the time I’d taken them from the fridge after cooling them down, they’d hardened into one block of chocky, defeating the purpose of calculated ‘bites’ for dietary purposes. Oh, and I don’t really like mint, but I do look forward to trialling the Crushed Almonds flavour one day. Suffice to say, this product ticks all the health boxes: low on carbs, gluten-free, vegan, and just 150 calories per pack. Clever, that Sophie Monk!
Hand Care Wash by BX Earth
Often, I turn to the hand wash sitting beside my kitchen sink when I’m wanting to get grease or grit off me, but really I should head to the bathroom and do a proper job with normal soap. For this reason, my hands have gotten somewhat dry. I thought I’d test this hand care wash product by BX Earth by doing even more hand washing at the kitchen sink – just to see if the same amount of dryness would result. Instead, my hands kind of feel smoother! This product really is better than others I’ve tried. And there are sooooo many hand washes on the market, just swapping brands regularly could be part of the ‘dryness’ problem. I think I’ve found one I’ll be sticking to for good now. Two (not so dry) thumbs up!
COMPETITION: WIN 1 OF 3 HAMPERS OF ‘PRODUCT OF THE YEAR’ PRODUCTS!
Courtesy of a great big bunch of brill brands, Cream magazine has three product hampers to give away, each containing a sample of the following products that have won ‘Product of the Year 2019’: Darrell Lea Chocolate Blocks, Sunsol Probiotic Toasted Muesli, San Remo Ready Pasta, Sophie Monk’s Slim Secrets Choc Love Bites, Camel Milk Body Cream, Rexona Advanced Protection Deoderant, Listerine Go! Tabs, and Skin Nutrient Sun Barrier Tone-Up Sunscreen.
To try winning a product hamper, simply Like our Facebook page and tag a friend in our Facebook post about this Product of the Year competition. Each hamper is worth over $100. Competition closes 5pm AWST, Monday 25 November, 2019 so get in quick!