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South American Beauty

Get ready for carnival with these little-known ingredients and beauty secrets, straight from the rainforests of South America.

What do Sofia Vergara, Shakira and Gisele Bündchen all have in common – other than being drop-dead gorgeous? They all hail from South America. A continent rich in diversity, it encompasses twelve countries and an additional two territories, each with its own unique culture, traditions and of course, beauty secrets. 

We’ve collated the best of these tips into one handy place, so you can discover what elements of a beauty routine are most important to women in South America, and what ingredients they use to get that gorgeous Amazonian look.

Natural Ingredients

Whether in bustling Rio de Janeiro or in rural Guyana, natural ingredients are at the heart of South American hair and skincare. Being home to some of the largest expanses of rainforest in the world, it’s hardly a surprise! The continent has an abundance of exotic fruits and seeds, many of which are used to create natural hair masks or applied to skin for hydration. The best part? Some brands you already know and love have begun to include these ingredients in their products, so you can try them for yourself!

Buriti oil is derived from the fruit of the moriche palm tree or “tree of life”, which grows in Brazilian rainforests. It is used for nourishing and repairing skin and hair, including treating skin conditions and burns. 

Sacha Inchi oil comes from the seeds of the star-shaped sacha inchi fruit which have been grown by the indigenous people of Peru for thousands of years. High in omega-3 and containing vitamins E and A, sacha inchi oil is used to hydrate and protect skin and hair.

Amazonian white clay is harvested near the mouth of the Amazon River in Brazil and has been used for centuries due to its exfoliating and detoxifying properties.

Avocados grow all over South America (envious!) and are often used in DIY hair treatments or skin masks. Don’t fancy getting messy? Check out our favourite avocado beauty products below.


When it comes to South American beauty, women take their hair very seriously. Thick, luscious hair is a crown to wear proudly, and they use the nourishing ingredients that grow locally to enhance what nature gave them. 

Using a hair mask at least once a week delivers moisture back into the hair, protecting it from the elements, taming frizz and adding shine. Buriti oil can also be used to this effect, and Aveda’s Dry Remedy range includes it as an active ingredient, so you can try it at home. Alternatively, the All Soft Mega range from Redken uses sachi inchi oil to hydrate dry and damaged hair.  

Don’t have naturally straight hair but want to get those flawless South American locks? Most salons now offer the famous “Brazilian Blowout” treatment which combines keratin and heat to smooth hair and calm curls. But if you don’t want to pay salon prices, Novex has you covered. Their Brazilian Keratin range includes Brazilian keratin protein, so you can achieve the same look at a fraction of the price.


Skincare plays a key part of the average beauty routine as women in South American tend to spend a lot of time outdoors and enjoy a warm climate for much of the year. Top priorities include moisturising skin products and SPF face creams. While we certainly have no shortage of either of those at allbeauty, here are a few skincare solutions that include one or more of the fantastic natural ingredients we highlighted earlier. 

Nuxe Paris, Super Skin Repair Balm includes buriti oil, honey and five other botanical oils to improve complexion and reduce tight, dry skin.

Elemental Herbology, Cell Plumping Facial Moisturiser is a nourishing cream for dry and ageing skin which includes antioxidants and sacha inchi oil, among others, to deeply hydrate.

Lab Series for Men, Oil Control Clearing Solution includes Amazonian white clay in its ingredients, helping to reduce oily skin and keep blemishes at bay. 

Caudalie Hand and Nail Cream combines the rich moisturising properties of avocado and shea butter to restore moisture to hands.


In general, things are kept super simple where makeup is concerned. With flowing hair and bronzed, flawless skin, the need for makeup falls by the wayside! Instead, most South American women swear by all-in-one products such as a good quality BB cream, a hydrating lip balm and a dark, elongating mascara.

However, that’s not to say that it’s a totally low-maintenance look. The one area where time and money is most definitely spent, is on nail care. Most women will see a nail technician regularly and invest in bold colours, nail extensions and eye-catching nail art. We all love to include a pop of personality in our beauty routine after all!

From oils from the deepest corners of the rainforest, to clay from the banks of the Amazon, South America holds a wealth of beauty secrets within its borders. Give one a try and see what you’ve been missing out on.

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