Weekly Wonder Tool: Cardinham Killigrew Natural Luxury Lotions

I first stumbled upon Steven Funk and his exquisite line of lotions, soaps, and other bath products at the Annapolis Irish Festival in July.  I was lured into his booth by the luxurious scents and intrigued by the old world style packaging. I got to talking with Mr. Funk and learned the interesting history of his company.

Funk, an engineer by trade, had been purchasing an expensive men’s aftershave and wanted to figure out if he could make it himself.  As he explored the world of lotions and soaps, he was appalled by the vast amount of dyes, fillers, additives, and chemicals in them.  In a recent interview, Funk explained, “You wouldn’t eat some chemical you have no idea what it is and quite frankly sounds horrible … but you don’t think twice about rubbing it into the pores in your skin.” 

Funk and his team went through a long trial and error experiment to develop a lotion so pure, he’d be proud to sell it.  With ingredients like jojoba oil, aloe, and shea oil, along with infatuation fragrances (Irish Sea and Champagne are my favorites), the products are impressive alone in their cobalt blue packaging.  But it’s their performance which makes them a wonder tool for me.

Generally, I buy drug store brands, mainly because they’re economical, packing low prices and large volumes.  Plus, they outperform natural products.  I believe in the merits of natural brands, but found that their smells fell short for me, and they were more expensive than they were worth. 

The second I tried Cardinham Killigrew, I was convinced that products could be natural and effective.  My skin felt – pardon the cliché- like a baby’s.    When I purchased Cardinham Killigrew shower gel and lotion at the Annapolis Irish Festival, it was a bit of a splurge at $12 for a 4 oz. bottle. But I was six months pregnant and needed a treat on a hot day.  And I believed in the product in and on my hands.

I kept my Cardinham Killigrew shower gel and lotion in my travel bag for special occasions, like our trip to the beach and Leo’s birth, but recently brought it back out.  No amount or type of hand lotion could rescue my dry, winter hands.  They were at the point where my palms were cracked and bleeding.  To top it off, the drug store bath wash I was using broke my legs out in a red bumpy, scaly rash.  I stole into my travel bag and got out the Cardinham Killigrew.  Within a day my skin looked a lot like Leo’s and I was a convert.  I’d make other sacrifices (twice-daily Dunkin Donuts trips) to afford great skin.

I went to their website to order more shower gel and lotion in Irish Sea, but couldn’t find it.  I emailed Mr. Funk and within an hour I had a reply.  More was on the way.  He also added that his product was available in several retail stores in Delaware, which isn’t far from me.

I asked him if he’d thought about creating a line for children, as poor Collin has inherited my papery skin, and he said they’ve considered it in the past.  Here’s hoping Cardinham Killigrew Kids is in the future.

A huge variety of Cardinham Killigrew bath products is available at cardinhamkilligrew.com and on Etsy.com.  It can also be found at a variety of festivals headed our way soon!  

Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.