Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Elemis Balancing Cleanser And Toner

 Now, I don't want to bore you again my bringing up this relatively unspoken statement, again. However, here it goes - I have very oily and spotty skin and this is the one aspect that shapes the whole of my skincare regime. Never satisfied with the appearance of my skin, I regularly browse the various beauty sites looking to see what products will help combat my troublesome skin.
The latest products that caught my eye were the Elemis Balancing Lime Blossom Cleanser and the Balancing Lavender Toner.

Sticking to a skincare regime is not something that I'm use to, I have to admit in the past I've been pretty lazy. Frequently, the most strenuous activity during the removal of my make-up would be wiping my face with a wipe - I know, it's not very impressive. For the benefit of you guys (well, myself really but I'm in the Christmas spirit) I have stuck to these products, morning and evening, religiously for seven weeks!

Balancing Lime Blossom Cleanser:

This cleanser with is designed specifically for combination skin has a creamy consistency, although it is also verging on the edge of being a lotion. It contains extracts of lime blossom (as you probably guessed by the name), egg yolk protein and vitamin E and F - products which are going to work with your skin rather than against it.
This is a lovely gentle cleanser that worked really well on my sensitive skin; it did not leave my skin irritated in the slightest. As somebody who is particularly fussy about fragrances I really cannot complain as there is barely a smell, it smells very fresh and quite plain really. Admittedly, I did get this into my eyes and there was no stinging or pain, which I found a little odd but still I'm not complaining!
The only problem that I have with this product is that I still need to remove my make-up with a face wipe beforehand as this cleanser seems to have a problem with removing foundation, but this may be because I wear quite long-lasting foundation. Also, you can't really remove your eye make-up with this cleanser either, unless you want to be there all night.
Overall, I can't complain with this cleanser as it leaves my skin feeling clean and it does keep my shine at bay a lot longer than other cleansers do. So, if you have combination skin I would highly recommend, as the number of blemishes I had reduced significantly!
Balancing Lavender Toner:
Now, I know toners are not really seen as a staple item in many people's beauty regimes but I'm never one to follow to crowd. I love this toner; a lot more than the cleanser, even though it smells of lavender which is a fragrance that usually plays havoc with my eyes - but not this one.
Lavender is meant to be great for problematic skin as it soothes blemishes, this toner also contains Quillaja Wood and Sweet Betty Flower (Yes, this is new to me as well, but it sounds good!), these are meant to soften and balance the skin.
Not surprisingly, Elemis live up to its claims as this product leaves my skin feeling fresh and clean without the tight feeling you can often get with toners. And, although it doesn't claim to do this, my pores seemed minimised which is an added bonus. I use this morning and evening and it makes a large difference to my skin, as it ensures all my make-up is removed in case the cleanser hasn't managed to fully cleanse my skin.
The Elemis Balancing Lime Blossom Cleanser retails at £21, as does the Elemis Balancing Lavender. Elemis is avaialble from a range of places including, Feel Unique, Debenhams, QVC UK and more.
Has anyone else been impressed by Elemis products? Can anyone recommend a good cleanser and toner to try once I have finished this?

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Max Factor Lipfinity Lip Tint

Never someone who wanted to stand out of the crowd I've always avoided lip glosses, sticks or tints that step outside of my one shade above boundary. Recently, I decided I was going to be more adventurous with my lip colours, especially seeing as there are some amazing shades around at the moment.
Having gone off the idea of lip glosses (the texture now makes me cringe for some reason) I decided to give lip tints ago. Anything to help my lazy self from having to reapply later on in the day.
And, this is what caught my eye - Max Factor Lipfinity Lip Tint. I picked this up in the shade Pink Princess (03), I know this isn't particularly exotic for many of you but for it's a lot darker than I usually go for. It promised long lasting colour, no fuss and no mess... what could go wrong?
The nib of this pen, reminds me of a felt tip pen, it's very small, precise and quite sturdy. Also, the long nib allows you to fill in your lips by using the side of it. It allowed me to draw a very precise line without a problem at all, and although this had quite a watery consistency the liquid is very pigmented.
The stain feels a little tacky on the lips, not gloopy but not glossy either. This texture did disappear after wearing it for around five minutes. The application wasn't particularly quick; first I applied it by defining the shape of my lips, so the stain could begin to settle on my skin. Then I applied again across the lips to build up the colour, after I rubbed my lips together otherwise it just sat on my lips without settling. And then, I did the whole process again just to make it pigmented, as it can look a little patchy otherwise.
As this is a stain I expected it to sit on my lips and not budge, at least for a few hours anyway. However, this wasn't the case, within three hours this had completely disappeared off my lips and I hadn't eaten or drank anything either.
Also, as someone who has particularly dry lips I was hoping it would be moisturising, but, within an hour my lips looked dry. With this stain on top it wasn't a good look. Plus, I also had bleeding around the side of my lips.
I didn't want to waste this product so applied Vaseline over the top to hydrate them and make them appear glossy rather than matte.  
As much as I grew to love the colour, this product is definitely not something I would buy again. It just seems such a waste of time going through the application process only for it to have worn off within a couple of hours. I will not be giving up my Jemma Kidd lip and cheek flush for this I'm afraid.
Anyone recommend some lip tints? I'm tempted to buy the Revlon Just Bitten lip tints?
P.S. Half term is nearing so expect to see me a lot more once these three assignments are handed in!

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Benefit Brow Zings

When you have a fringe it's very easy to hide those untamed eyebrows. I was guilty of hiding my eyebrows behind my heavy side-sweeping fringe and forgetting about them. Since growing my fringe out, my eyebrows have become one of my priorities.
I am incredibly fussy about eyebrows. In the past I have left them very natural, however as they have become visible I've tried to keep them in a good condition. As someone who got a little tweezer happy when I was younger (something I seriously regret now), my eyebrows aren't the best. After using various serums I have managed to regain the thickness of my eyebrows, however, there are a few sparse patches in my eyebrows. This is where eyebrow pencils or eyebrow powder come in very handy.
I purchased the Benefit Brow Zings after running out of my beloved Urban Decay Brow Box. Instead I repurchasing I thought I would give the much raved about Benefit Brow Zings a try.
The Benefit Brow Zings product comes in a sleek compact, and you know what a sucker I am for cute, practical packaging. Within the compact you receive, a brow shaping wax which is colourless (although it looks brown in the packaging), brow powder in your chosen shade, a hard angle brush to apply the wax, a blending brush to apply the powder and mini-sized tweezers. This makes the product a great product for travelling, as you have everything you need to groom your eyebrows, all in one place.
It's very easy to use the compact. The first step is to use your blending brush and fill in any sparse areas with the powder. Then, take the hard angle brush and apply the wax on top to seal the brow powder. Finish off by plucking out any stray hairs with the mini tweezers. Handily, the compact comes with instructions and diagrams so you really cannot go wrong.
The Benefit Brow Zings is available in three shades: light, medium and dark. I chose the lightest shade, as recommended by the make-up artist and this is a perfect match for my light brown eyebrows. While the powder is the perfect shade, the wax has an orange tinge on my skin tone. I usually just give the wax a miss, the powder last all day so I wouldn't say it's essential to apply the wax.
This product retails at £22.50, for 2.65g of powder and 1.7g of wax. Admittedly this is expensive, but like with most eyebrow powders, a little goes a long way. I've been using this for around four months and I haven't hit pan yet.
Although this is a good product, I'm not sure that this is better than the Urban Decay Brow Box. It may just be me being fussy, but the powder seems a lot harder to apply, it just doesn't want to stick to my eyebrows. Either way, it's a good product, but for me Urban Decay provides my Holy Grail product.
Which eyebrow powder would you recommend?
P.S. Sorry for my mini blogging vacation, university took over my life and my laptop died and disappeared from my life - not good.

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Elemis Melting Cleansing Gel

As someone who is never satisfied I'll often flick from one product to another, always thinking there must be something better out there. So, I hid my much loved Liz Earle's Cleanse & Polish away and took a trip to the Elemis counter in Debenhams.
It didn't take much persuasion to make me buy the Elemis Melting Cleansing Gel.
Elemis Melting Cleansing Gel is a hybrid formulation; it has a gel to oil formula. It's described as an "ultra purifying dual-phase cleanser perfect for challenged, tired and stressed skin".
Although it's described as a gel, it isn't at all like one. There is no tackiness, instead it resembles a runny balm, a delicious smelling one at that. Though it claims that the cleanser is suitable for all skin types, but the scent may mean that it is not suitable for everyone  such as those who have sensitive skin or react to fragrance. Personally, my skin is a little sensitive and I didn't have any problems with it at all! The tangerine and citrus smell is amazing, very soft and not overpowering. It's one of those smells that I love, no matter what my mood is.
To use you only need a small blob, about the size of a 10p coin, so not very much at all. Although it doesn't seem much, this is enough to whip off my full coverage make-up and eye make-up with ease. As you would with an oil or balm cleanser, you massage into the skin. It's advised that you do not use this around the eyes, but I did and it was absolutely fine.
You can tell if you have massaged the gel in enough as it turns into an oil-like consistency, and your face will look a mess. But fear not; simply remove all the cleanser and grime with hot water and a muslin cloth. I find it's best to remove it in sections and then rinsing the cloth out before starting on another section of the face, that way I can ensure it's been removed thoroughly. I'm left with a clean and radiant complexion, that doesn't feel tight or oily.
A bonus point of this product is the lack of sulphates or parabens which can sometimes work against my skin.
While the packaging doesn't scream 'luxury' like it should with the Elemis brand, it does look simple and chic. Elemis are all about the effectiveness of their products and so this reflects in their packaging, as it is created to make sure the product can be used easily and ensure that you use every last bit of the product. After all, being unable to reach the bottom of a product is one of my pet hates. 
Although £21.00 is quite a hefty price tag for 125ml of product, but I think with Elemis you pay for quality and luxury. This brand always lives up to my extremely high standards!
Anyone else fallen in love with the Elemis Melting Cleansing Gel?

Monday, 22 October 2012

OPI Nail Envy

I reached a point where I was fed-up of constantly painting my nails to hide my short, peeling, breaking and splitting nails. It wasn't pretty, believe me.
Nail Envy is a product that my Mum had used in the past and had raved about. Plus, I was reaching the end of my list of potential remedies. I needed to find something that was going to work, fast.
OPI Nail Envy comes in a variety of formulas; there is the original clear version plus a matte and pink version. I originally tried the OPI Nail Envy in the original formula which is where I saw the magical results. But, as you can see from the pictures, I repurchased it in the matte finish.
You apply two coats of the treatment to bare nails, and then apply another coat everyday or every other day; this can be on top of any coloured nail polish. Admittedly, I didn't quite stick to the route. I was just applying the two coats onto my bare nails every time I painted my nails, this was usually every few days.
But, without following the routine I noticed a dramatic difference within six weeks. Now, three months on, my nails are like new. They grow, no longer peel, split or break. Basically, they look like healthy! Brittle, dry nails are no more, and it is all down to this product and this product alone.
OPI Nail Envy can be purchased from a variety of places from QVC UK to Boots. This retails at £18.65 but you can find it much cheaper on eBay so it's worth shopping around.
Is OPI Nail Envy your holy grail too?

Friday, 19 October 2012

Tangle Teezer

It's hard to imagine that there could be anything unpleasant about having a shower. There isn't, till I have to try and comb my knotted hair. And, it appears not matter your age it isn't an experience that gets easier or less pain free.
The Tangle Teezer isn't particularly new; I've often wandered past it in shops. However, the appearance of the brush left me unmoved; as the bristles seemed to be rather hard and painful looking. After picking the packaging up and giving the information to read I thought why not, if it doesn't work then I have still got a hairbrush out of it.
Tangle Teezer said, "Tangle Teezer Original professional detangling hairbrush is loved by hairdressers and used in professional hair salons. It's a super smooth operator that works the minute hair is lathered and rinsed. Glides through wet, vulnerable and colour treated hair with no pulling, tugging or yanking. Hair peace at last!"
From the first use I was amazed. My big knot ball hair was able to be brushed without me uttering an 'Oww!' With a few strokes my hair was completely tangled free, what's even more incredible is that this was on wet hair! Although the bristles look quite hard and sharp they aren't, they do have flexibility to them.
As first I wasn't keen on the fact that it didn't have a handle. But, after using it I soon realised a lot of work had gone into the design of this brush. It was easy to hold and enabled you to have a lot more control than a comb would. I've also used the Michael Mercier Detangling Hair Brush in the past, but the Tangle Teezer seemed to work better without as much effort.
If I was going to be picky then the only complaint I would have is that if you use this in the shower you do need a tight grip as otherwise it can slip out of your hand.
There was no question of doubt as to what colour I would purchase the Tangle Teezer in, but if you aren't a pink girl like me then there are other colours, designs and patterns available.
I cannot imagine being without this product now! At £10.99 this isn't just an ordinary hair brush.
Can anyone else not live without their Tangle Teezer?

Saturday, 13 October 2012

Lee Stafford Poker Straight Flat Iron Protection Shine Mist

I confess, when it comes to styling my hair, I am a sinner. For as long as I can remember I put my hair through the daily challenges of blow drying and straightening. I cringe when I think about it. What makes it worse if that I've often forgot to protect my hair, usually because I hate the feel of products on my hair. A good lecture from my friend telling me all about the consequences of heat damage on your hair and I was soon perusing around Boots seeing what I might like.
Heat is a crucial part of my routine, and one that I am not willing to miss out. So, I decided to head to my favourite hair brand range, Lee Stafford. I picked up the Poker Straight Flat Iron Protection Shine Mist, I thought this would suit me seeing as straight hair is my signature hairstyle.
When it comes to hair care brands I don't believe you necessarily need to spend a fortune to find a good, effective product. Obviously the professionals may say different as I am not hairdresser, but from trying a huge range of products they all near enough do the same job.
For a reasonable price of £5.99 this protection mist lives up to my expectations. Firstly, I feel like it is protecting my hair as compared to other brands it does leave my hair feeling silky and soft without a residue or sticky feeling. Another bonus is that it  leaves my hair straighter for longer, especially in humid conditions where my hair begins to kink.
As far as heat defence sprays go this is definitely top of my list. This isn't a miracle product that has changed my hair dramatically, but it does what it sets out to do. Remember it's a protectant not a cure. A simple spritz onto damp hair is the only added step needed in your regime to create silky, undamaged hair.
That's all I can really say on a heat protectant, but I've been happy with the results so far and I promise to use it every day from now on. Now the thought of using heat as high as 200 degrees makes me shudder.
Do you always make sure you protect your locks from heat damage?

Monday, 8 October 2012

Benefit The Porefessional Primer

When it comes to my skin I will always claim that I was born a very unlucky child. I won't bore you with my long list of flaws (I wouldn't have enough battery life on my laptop), but believe me, I have my fair share of flaws.

Using foundations is a real challenge in itself, not only do I have to trawl the shops and online trying to find the perfect pale shade, it has to also last on oily skin. Oh, but that isn't all. I have extremely noticeable open pores. I guess it's like having puddles on my face.

I give you one guess to pick the most recommended product to disguise open pores. Yes, you've got it. The cult beauty product, the Benefit Porefessional Primer.

The lightweight, oil-free primer is designed to minimise the appearance of those mammouth pores when it’s either worn as a primer beneath makeup, where it creates a smooth canvas for foundation and powder, and/or applied on top of your face paint throughout the day, where it softens the skin with a matte finish.

Not one to go on about my pale skin, of course, I was a little worried of the primers brown tint. Despite its appearance, it appears fully translucent once applied, and blended very easily and dried in no time.



The lemony floral scent can at first seem quite overpowering, but once it had dried I didn't notice the scent once. Overall though, it smells really nice so wouldn't have minded if it had lasted the whole day. But, scents are personal.

The product does contain silicones, so if you like Smashbox Photofinish Primer like me, then you’ll probably love how The Porefessional feels on your skin. The Porefessional has a silky, lotion-like texture you get with a lot of products that contain silicone. Often with silicone based products it can feel like you're wearing a mask, but it didn't feel any different to my product free skin.

The tube packaging makes this very easily to dispense you're required amount without wasting the product. Word of advice though, dispense many small amounts instead of few large amounts. This way you don't use to much and don't clog up the nozzle.

Didn't I notice a difference? Yes, the size of my pores had visibly reduced which I was chuffed with. The only criticism is that this primer does not leave me oil-free as a lot of my other favourite primers do. I guess I have to choose which I would prefer on the day.

The Benefit Porefessional Primer isn't cheap at £23.50, but if a primer creates the flawless foundation base it could well be worth it.

Anyone found the dream product for large pores?


Wednesday, 26 September 2012

No7 Beautifully Matte Foundation

If Boots gave you the option to try a new little gadget out for free you would give it a go wouldn't you? Well, being a sucker for a gadget and on a very long quest to find the perfect foundation, I thought I would pop along to the No7 counter.
The No7 gadget sets out to help women find their perfect colour match in their range of foundations. It's incredibly simple to do. They zap the gadget on both sides of your face to match the colour of your skin to the nearest colour within their foundation. You then discuss your skin type with the advisor until you have decided on a foundation suitable for your skin type.
The No7 Beautifully Matte Foundation seemed the most suitable for my oily skin.

Boots No7 Beautifully Matte Foundation has been created with fine, oil-absorbing powders. The moisturising complex helps to balance oily and dry areas and the mattifying formula promises to make pores less visible. It also has salicylic acid to help prevent blemishes whilst keeping pores clear and contains SPF 15 to protect against the aging effects of the sun.
Sounds perfect doesn't it?

I expected to be disappointed with the coverage of this foundation as I usually find liquid foundations to thin, but, not this one. It has a medium coverage that is very buildable, without leaving you looking like it has been caked on. This covered my dark circles, blemishes and spots, although some areas need concealer but this is to be expected with the majority of foundations. I would go out without concealer because it only shows the odd flaw which I think is actually quite natural looking. The finish of this product is not dewy but not completely matte either, it's more of a satin finish. The natural finish stays looking natural all day and biggest joy of them all is that it doesn't oxidise!

This has quite a thick formulation, so I'd recommend priming or moisturising before using it, then it applies flawlessly. This blends well with a stippling brush, but I did find it blended even better when using my fingers and you can build up certain areas very easily. For as long as I can remember I've applied foundation with a brush, but I am quite liking applying the product with my fingers as it means product isn't wasted my absorbing into the brush.

(Lighest Shade: Calico - 43)

The packaging isn't anything special, but is decent especially for the price. This fits well into my make-up bag because it is tall and thin. The bottle has a pump dispenser which makes it hygienic and very practical. Although the packaging is simple, however, I do like the fact that it is clear so you can see when you are running out of product. Plus, the pump dispenser means every last drop out product will be used - very economical.

As for the oil control, I cannot fault it. This has to be the best foundation I've used on my oily skin; I lasted 8 hours before I reached for the powder. Admittedly, I probably could have lasted longer without powder as my skin didn't feel greasy or dirty. It's not the 12 hours that No7 claim, but it pretty damn close!

I've yet to find a foundation that works so well on my skin for such a reasonable price. You get the usual 30ml of product for just £12.50

Would you recommend any of the No7 products?


Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Even Finish Foundation

If there is one woman who seems to outdo herself every time she releases a new product, then it is that of Bobbi Brown.
Bobbi Brown has proven that she is the queen of foundation with her highly anticipated, newly released Long-Wear Even Finish Foundation with SPF15.
Never someone who likes to use my foundation right up until the end before repurchasing, I decided to move away from the comfort blanket (my current Max Factor foundation) and decided to try another product from the Bobbi Brown range, as they usually never fail to disappoint. This product had only been released the day before I took a visit to the Bobbi Brown counter, so I was very excited to try such a new product!
Although I may not be sophisticated or elegant I always see myself reaching for products with that type of packaging. I think its wishful thinking that I will one day ooze elegance - I can dream on. The frosted bottle did it for. Not only is it simple yet chic looking, it is also very sturdy. As someone who likes to put all my products through a challenge, the  glass bottle does withstand being chucked onto the floor without breaking. If you do a fair bit of travelling then you may want to decant some of the product into a smaller container as obviously this glass bottle is fairly heavy.
Never one to compromise of practicality, Bobbi Brown has ensured that the product is not wasted by using a pump dispenser on the bottle. This makes it hygienic as well. If you fancy reusing the cute bottle then you can as the pump dispenser is not attached.
My shade is Porcelain (0), the lightest shade available in this foundation. This is a very pale foundation, so suits my ghostly skins tone perfectly. It's worth noting that foundations which include SPF, like this one, do tend to be a lighter than those that do not. With this foundation you do not need to compromise by having the SPF15, you leave your skin protected without having a white cast on the face, even when being photographed. Although there is a yellow tone to this product you needn't be scared, the yellow neutralises any redness in the skin and illuminates without leaving you looking like to appear in The Simpsons. This disappears onto my skin flawlessly and naturally, I look like I am not wearing any foundation!
The foundation is gel based, which is perfect for us oily skinned consumers. It has a whipped consistency that helps the product to glide on leaving a smooth appearance on the skin. The creamy texture means that little blending it required of the foundation, it leaves the skin even in an instance.
The coverage is impressive of a liquid foundation, as it yields a full coverage, something that is hard to find in liquid foundations. This foundation covered blemishes, scars and dark circles without the help of a concealer. Although it has a full coverage it doesn't leave you looking made-up, it's very natural. It leaves a semi-matte appearance on the skin, perfect for those who have oily skin but still want to look dewy without being oily.
The Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Even Finish Foundation is described as "a natural looking and long-wearing foundation. Ultra comfortable and hydrating, this medium to full coverage formula leaves skin looking poreless, perfected, and fresh up to 12 hours even in the most humid conditions. Includes broad spectrum UVA/UVB SPF15 for daily protection against future damage". And, it pretty much lives up to its claims. Unfortunately it did not last twelve hours on my skin but rather six, nevertheless this is very good for a foundation on my oily skin.
While the full coverage aspect sounds scary to many people, especially those with oily skin, I did not suffer with breakouts or blocked pores. Even when I had worn this for hours and touched up, the product still felt fresh and not like it had been pasted on.
If there is one thing that I am going to criticise about this product then it is the scent. Lavender is not one of my favourite scents and usually leaves my eyes watering, however, this doesn't. Initially you can smell it, but once I had applied it to my skin I did not smell it again.
Bobbi Brown just seems to better and better herself every time she releases a new product. And, topping my chart of best foundations is this one, despite the £30 price tag!
Anyone found a long-lasting foundation?

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Soap and Glory's Peaches and Clean

If there is something I need to wake my half asleep self-up on a morning then it is a refreshing facial cleanser.

After hearing some rave reviews, and Boots having a handy 3-for-2 promotion on I decided to treat myself to the Soap and Glory's Peaches and Clean.

If you are a regular reader then you will know I am a huge fan of the Soap and Glory range, they manage to combine quality with affordability.

Peaches and Clean is a deep cleansing milk that aims to unclog pores, purify the skin and keep that t-zone shine free. In the past, I have experienced a few cleansing milks and wished I hadn't. A few have left my skin stripped of all hydration leaving it rough and dry. However, the moisturising properties in this milk have helped the keep my skin moisturised.

The peach and apricot scent is reminiscent of yoghurts, what could be more fitting on a morning? I'm quite fussy when it comes to fragrances but I love this one, it is refreshing and pleasant, but not too over-powering.

As with most cleansing milks I simply apply this to wet skin on a morning. On an evening I use this as the second step in my cleansing routine after the Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish. I apply it to dry skin, massaging it in well, and then washing off with warm water.

Although it is the punny names I fall for initially, the gentle ingredients make this a little gem.

I will definitely repurchase this for £7.00, especially as it lasts a lifetime, well, nearly!

Anyone else prefer cleansing milk to a facial wash?

Saturday, 15 September 2012

No7 Shine Free Primer

As someone who is never satisfied I decided to take a break from my Smashbox Primer and started my quest to find a primer just as good but also cheaper and more easily accessible for myself.
Without a shadow of doubt, Boots was going to be my destination for mission primer. After perusing the aisles I came across this one, the No7 Shine Free Primer.

As someone who regularly bores you about my oily skin this sounded like the perfect product for myself.
 No7 claim that this primer will 'Keep shiny skin under control all day long, with this mattifying oil-free base. Light reflecting particles help disguise fine lines and flaws, while oil absorbing Biopol helps minimise blemishes and blot away shine without blocking pores. Contains watermelon and cucumber extracts to help soothe and cool your skin. Formulated to be non-pore blocking. Hypo-allergenic'.
The helpful lady at the No7 counter recommended that I pat this on, or at least glide it on, as opposed to rubbing it on. I followed her advice, and tried all other techniques possible when applying a primer.
After trialling various techniques, foundations and moisturisers with this product I have come to the conclusion that this does not do anything it claims to do!
When applying it was sticky, thick and has a consistency almost clay-like. If that wasn't off-putting enough it smelt like PVA glue. Every time I tried applying this I was left with lumps of product just sitting on my skin and the areas I did manage to spread onto my skin just sat very visibly on the skin. Once I had applied a foundation on top it looked even worse, it looked like my skin was flaking all over.

As for my already visible pores, they seemed to appear even larger with this product. Rather than gliding over them and hiding the appearance they just sat around them making them the focal point of my face.
The staying power is incredible, but then again this is something I would expect of clay-like product. If they managed to create a product which did leave a satiny feel on the skin it would be amazing. However, I would never use this product again!
If I did have to pick something I liked about this product then it would be the packaging. It's practical and not too fancy.
I think it's fairly obvious that I will not be purchasing this primer again. Perhaps the saying is true, you get what you pay for?
Any of you know a good primer at an affordable price?

Monday, 3 September 2012

Sanctuary Time Reversal Face Mask

For those of you who know a little about me, such as my age, I'm sure you will be staring at your computer screen in disbelief wondering why on earth a nineteen year old is using a face mask designed for older skin.
Although I am young, my skin sometimes goes through phases where it is so dehydrated it does seem older than it actually is. My latest scare came when I saw a fine line across my forehead, the only cause I can think of is that it is so parched!
The Sanctuary Time Reversal Face Mask came to my rescue!
The Sanctuary Time Reversal Face Mask is described as an intensive treatment containing vitamin A, E, C and a unique marine complex shown to increase collagen levels.
My hope was that it would live up to its claims that it would help firm, plump and restore my lack lustre skin.
This is the perfect face mask to use on a pamper night; you simply apply a thin layer of the mask after you have exfoliated your skin. Leave it for five to ten minutes before rinsing away with a cloth and then patting dry the skin. Viola, you now have youthful looking skin.
The light texture is soft and does not leave any residue on the skin and therefore will not cause you to have any breakouts. I was impressed with how moisturising the serum/cream was, especially because of its unique texture.
For £13.27 (an odd price) this is wonderful. After just one use my skin had visibly improved and improved my skins moisture levels. The tube contains 75ml of product so will approximately give you ten face masks.
This is perfect for you if you're starting to look old before your time. I'm doing anything to stay looking youthful.
Can you recommend any super hydrating face masks?

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Clear Here Cleansing Cloths From Soap And Glory

Every time I stroll through Boots there is always one brand that I am drawn towards. I'll give you some clues as to who it is. Firstly, they have super cute and girly packaging, the products are all labelled with quirky names and every product in the range smells absolutely divine, no matter what type of potion it is!
So, have you guessed it yet? Of course, it's Soap & Glory.
As I glanced down the aisle, I noticed that unusually the Soap & Glory display was looking rather full for a change. And, it was the hot pink packaging that drew my inquisitive side over to have a look.
I had never tried any of the facial wipes in the range before so decided to purchase the Soap & Glory Clear Here Cleansing Cloths (Deep Pore Purifying T-Zone).

I use facial wipes daily to remove the majority of my make-up before using my Clarisonic Mia, and although I use them frequently it was one product that I never gave much thought about.
So, after reading the description which said, '3-in-1 cleansing, toning and skin smoothing cloths. Infused with slow release Poreshrink-RS™ acid free exfoliator formulated to fight spots and blackheads'. I decided to give them a try as I was suffering with blackheads and open pores on and around my nose.
The majority of facial wipes on the market do not have these sorts of claims, which is why I was wishful yet also fairly sceptical.
Another aspect that helped me decide to use these is that they are created specifically for oily and combination skin.
Unfortunately, three days into using these cleansing cloths my skin wasn't thanking me for it. These reacted with my skin; they left me with dry patches on parts of my cheeks and also breakouts across my chin and forehead. My skin felt as rough as sandpaper. I will point out that my skin is incredibly sensitive, which is why I usually go for products that use natural and active ingredients.
Obviously, do not take my review as the one and only. I have heard and read some very positive reviews, so it shows that with any product every skin type will react differently.
Overall they removed my make-up very well, especially because the cloths are textured and therefore also give your skin some exfoliation. The blackheads on my nose were also reduced, so if this is something you a particularly worried about I would recommend these.
If you want to give these a try they are available from Boots for £4.50, although at the moment there is currently a 3-for-2 offer on Soap & Glory products. There are twenty five wipes in the resealable packet.
Although this product didn't work for me I will still continue to be a Soap & Glory lover.
Are there any facial wipes you would recommend?

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Clarisonic Mia

Ignoring the price, I am an absolute sucker for a beauty gadget. Looking at the price I'm not so much, but after hearing rave reviews and seeing some pretty impressive pictures, I decided to take the plunge (in to my bank account) and purchase a Clarisonic Mia Compact Sonic Facial Cleansing System.

Don't be put off by its ridiculously long name!

The Clarisonic Mia is a lightweight, compact cleansing system that uses sonic technology. So, to achieve healthier skin this cleansing system uses 300 movements per second which flexes the skin back and forth over a very short difference. This sonic technology gently cleans pores, loosens dirt, make-up and oil.

The cleansing system claims to remove up to six times more make-up than manual cleansing. Plus, help reduce the appearance of pores, fine lines and wrinkles. It also aims to reduce oily areas, dry skin patches and blemishes. Basically, this products aims to improve the appearance and condition of your skin, which in turn should also help those facial products work better.

This product can suit every skin type; you simply just need to choose the correct brush head. The Mia is supplied with a sensitive brush head, however when purchased from QVC UK, you also receive the normal brush head as well as one for delicate skin too. The Mia comes with a brush lid with holes in it to allow evaporation of water and prevent damage to the brush bristles. These brush heads are interchangeable with other Clarisonic skin cleansing models and you can also buy replacement brush heads very easily from a range of stockists. It's vital to keep the brush heads clean and to replace them every three months to prevent spreading bacteria around the skin. However, to make them last as long as possible, regularly clean the brush head in shampoo and then spray with anti-bacteria spray.

This impressive little gadget is completely waterproof so I can use it in the shower without the fear of being electrocuted. Unlike other Clarisonic Facial Cleansing Systems this one only has one button and is set to one speed, making it incredibly easy to use. Although this product is battery operated it's pretty inventive in the design of its charging. Mia uses a unique pLink power link charger, it uses a magnet that attaches to the bottom of the handle and once fully charged allows for twenty minutes of usage. Therefore, if you use it for the recommended one minute a day, twice a day, you can use it for ten days before having to charge it up again. When the Clarisonic is low on battery, it produces these pulses at the end of each use. 

This will be your perfect travel companion if you also have the original  Clarisonic, as the Mia is fifteen times smaller than the original. However, it is still fairly large and surprisingly heavy. As someone who doesn't do much travelling this is perfect for me as it means I need less room in the cupboard to store it. Some people like to take this to the gym with them which is fine, however if you're going to pop it in your university bag with around six textbooks you probably wouldn't want the extra few pounds in your bag. Saying that, I'm not sure you would unnecessarily carry it around with you anyway.

The Mia will fit into and complement your skin regime so don't feel the need to change it too much if you purchase the Mia.

On a morning I apply a small amount of cleanser on to damp skin, I then dampen the Clarisonic brush head and run across my face. It's recommended that you spend twenty seconds on your forehead, twenty seconds on your nose and chin and then ten seconds on each cheek. Once the minute is up the Mia will automatically turn off. I also like to use this on my neck and décolleté for a minute. After doing this I then rinse my face and apply my day cream and continue my regime and make-up as normal.

On an evening first of all, I remove my eye make-up with Gatineau Floracil on a cotton pad - it is recommended that you remove all eye make-up first. I then quickly remove the remainder of my make-up with a facial wipe. Although the device comes with a small travel sized Clarisonic Gentle Hydro Cleanser, I still like to use my usual cleanser with the Clarisonic. After removing my make-up with the facial wipes I then massage some Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish onto my face and neck. I then place the Mia under running warm water and then cleanse my face. I have very sensitive skin so use the sensitive brush head which is lovely and soft and doesn't aggravate my skin. Once the one minute is up, I then do the same on my neck and décolleté. I finish my rinsing my face and applying all my usual lotions and potions.

Was this a decision well made? Most definitely, like many people I was sceptical about whether this cleansing system could add anything more to what my current skin regime was already doing, but it has. My oily skin  now seems a lot more balanced, my T-Zone stays shine free for an extra two hours longer than it did before. After testing the Clarisonic for a month I have noticed that I have suffered with fewer breakouts - the ones I have suffered with I put down to hormones.

It works deeply yet gently (if you choose the right brush head for you) to clear pores and prepares your skin for increased absorption, which is turn makes your moisturiser reach its full potential. My moisturiser sinks in well after using the device and my skin has begun to look a lot brighter and smoother in texture. I have also noticed a very visible difference in the size of my pores and blackheads, especially around my nose. Admittedly, there is a knack to using the Mia around and on the nose area, but if you persevere you will get there.

At around £120 it is on the pricey side, however, I would definitely recommend this, especially for  those who have oily skin or who are prone to breakouts. I think the only downside is the price especially if you're on a budget, so I would suggest maybe putting it on your Christmas list. Or, like in my case, stop wasting my student loan.

This is a large investment which is why I rambled on. I wanted to ensure that people got to hear my honest opinion on as much as the product as possible.

Anyone seen any improvements in their skin from using a Clarisonic?