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?


Monday, 13 August 2012

Nails Inc Sweets Way & Pudding Lane

I'm afraid you are mistaken; this post is not in fact about food. If you thought it was about a delicious pudding, I do apologise for leaving you feeling hungry.

Some of you may have read my Nails Inc Sugar House Lane post, I promised to show you some more shades from the Nails Inc Sprinkle collection.

So, if you had been waiting to see Sweets Way and Pudding Lane in the flesh then the wait is over!

Sweets Way:

Pudding Lane:

In dim lighting these two shades complemented each other very well, however in day light I'm not so sure. Nevertheless, they don't leave my pale skin looking sullen which is always a bonus!

If you want to know more about the Sprinkles collection nail polishes then check out my Nails Inc Sugar House Lane review.

Anyone else think Pudding Lane would look amazing with a tan?


Saturday, 11 August 2012

Bobbi Brown BB Cream SPF35

Once a unique product, the BB Cream has since become a phenomenon, a vast amount of brands have jumped onto the very crowded bandwagon eager to release their version of the BB Cream.

Out of the six BB Creams I have tried and tested in the last few months, all have failed to reach my expectations. Admittedly I do have very high standards.

Bobbi Brown, not one to be left behind decided to create a BB Cream, albeit one with a difference as she describes it as the 'reinvented BB Cream'.

This BB Cream is 'inspired by a skincare/makeup hybrid that's a cult favourite in Asia'. It's claimed that this BB Cream works as a moisturiser, treatment and a broad spectrum sunscreen.

There are four aspects to making this BB Cream the ultimate one. Firstly, it balances the skin by attracting moisture to the skin. It brightens your skin as it contains light reflective pigments as well as Scutellaria Extract, Caffeine and Sucrose which help to create a clearer, more even skin tone. The skin is renewed as the wrinkle-fighting Argireline Peptide helps to boost your skin's natural collagen production. The presence of SPF35 provides a broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection while Vitamin E protects the skin from free radical damage.

I purchased the Extra Light shade; I would say this is suitable for those between the Alabaster and Porcelain shades in the Bobbi Brown foundation range. I have yet to find a BB Cream that is as light as this one, so if you've struggled to find one light enough then I would definitely give this one a go. The other four shades in the BB Cream range are Light, Fair, Medium and Medium to Dark.

(Out the tube)

(Blended - Sorry if my veins made you feel a bit queasy, I didn't realise at the time)

The coverage is very impressive for a BB Cream; it offers a medium coverage which leaves a very natural look on the skin. It provides more coverage than a tinted moisturiser but not as much as some foundations. However, the lightweight and buildable formula does mean the coverage can be built up for a fuller coverage. I have used this without concealer; it covered my dark circles and the majority of blemishes on my chin.

I was drawn to this product because it contains natural minerals to help absorb and control excess surface oil on the skin, as most of you are aware my oily skin drives me crazy. The finish of this product is not dewy but not quite matte; I would say it leaves you with more of a glow. This look lasted for around five hours on my skin before I started developing shine, this is about average for my skin. To remove the skin I blotted my skin and applied some more of the BB Cream and it looked just as good as when I applied it in the morning.

If you have a foundation which you love but isn't giving you enough coverage then I would recommend trying this as a base to diminish the appearance of those flaws. I did this and didn't need to apply as much foundation as before.

For those lazy days where you just want to apply something quickly and have a fresh look then this is perfect, if you prefer to always wear a fuller coverage on the skin then you are perhaps better suited to a foundation as £28.00 is a lot of money to justify especially if you're just using it as a base.

The added bonus is that of the ingredients which provide protection from sun damage. They are chemicals so if you have extremely sensitive skin then this may not be the best product for you. I have sensitive skin and have had no reaction to this product as of yet and I have been using this product for three weeks.

Quick note on the packaging, it is simple and sophisticated. But, the nozzle does mean you need to be careful when dispensing the product as you only need a small amount. I've just got the knack of dispensing the right amount, as a little really does go a long way.

Are there any other BB Creams you recommend?


Monday, 6 August 2012

Nails Inc Sugar House Lane

I love to have a cupcake with butter cream frosting with sprinkles on top; however, I would much prefer a calorie free sweet treat. So, when I saw the Nails Inc Sprinkles polishes I grabbed them quicker than you could say 'cupcake'.

The Sprinkles collection features four eye-catching shades. These nail varnishes are described as being special effect, and they truly are. Each shade contains mattified glitter particles, giving us the impression of sprinkles. While the description doesn't do any justice to these polishes have a look at the picture of Sugar House Lane, it's different from anything I've ever used!

I'm wearing Sugar House Lane which is a pale mushroom grey with monochrome sprinkles. The other looks available are:

Sweets Way - Pale blue with pastel blue, pink and white sprinkles
Pudding Lane - Teal blue with navy and gold sprinkles
Topping Lane - Rose pink with fuchsia, silver and blue sprinkles

The look is very easy to get, simply apply like any normal nail varnish. It's easy to get out the bottle and the particles attach well to the brush, there was no fussing around. To achieve an opaque coverage I applied two thin coats.

The product dries very quickly onto the nail and lasts a long time, as you would expect as it contains glitter particles. This polish does dry matte so you will need to apply a top coat to achieve a glossy look. However, if you like the matte look then there is no need to apply a top coat especially as the glitter particles are not rough.

(Sorry my nails aren't in the best condition!)

Once again Nails Inc have out done themselves with their creativity, to be honest they can do no wrong in my book.

I haven't got a favourite from the Sprinkles collection because I've fallen in love with them all, so I'm sure there will be a few posts popping up showcasing the other shades.

What do you think of this? Is this a unique look or just a different take on glitter nail polish?


Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Argan Oil Hair Treatment

Until recently there was one product I would not dare put anywhere near my oily hair, that is oil. So, when a friend of mine recommended Argan Oil Hair Treatment, I quickly refused. After doing a little bit of research I soon realised that my over-processed damaged hair may thank me for trying this product.

After the first use I was expecting my hair to resemble something that had been washed in chip fat oil. But, much to my surprise, it instead looked healthy, shiny and in very good condition. This appearance even lasted once I had straightened it, this is the time it usual resembles a bale of hay.

Argan Oil Hair Treatment aims to nourish, repair and rejuvenate, smooth and eliminate frizz on dry damaged hair. It also provides protection from further damage and gives the hair long-lasting shine. It your hair icon is Kate Middleton then this is definitely the product for you!

So, how does one product manage to do all this? Well, it is all down to its one special ingredient - Vitamin E, a very powerful natural anti-oxidant.

It's good to have a play around with this product to find your preferred method. Personally, for me, I prefer to work this into the ends of my damp hair and then blow dry my hair. However, I also use this once a week as an overnight treatment mask. Admittedly, the first time I tried this I was dreading waking up in the morning in case my hair was one big oily mess, but, all of the oil had been absorbed!

This product immediately improved the condition and appearance of my hair, goodbye dry damaged ends. This oil did not leave my hair greasy or sticky; there was no sign that I had used an extra product in my hair regime.

One of the biggest annoyances with my hair is that it's frizzy, but no more with this product. Plus,  the drying time was also considerably reduced.

To me, this product is faultless even down to the scent. Just a few pumps and my hair is transformed, and who knows how long the product will last as a little seems to go a very long way!

The packaging is simple which means you are not going to get into a mess as you simply just press the nozzle and dispense your desired amount.

There are many cheaper hair treatment oils available to buy but this is definitely worth the £12.99.

How do you keep your hair healthy from heat damage?