I’m not too great at taking supplements of any kind but I’ve been taking these new Optibac Probiotics for Every Day MAX for a couple of weeks now.
For Every Day MAX are Optibac’s newest high strength probiotic supplements. With each capsule containing 50 billion high quality live microorganisms these are sure to kick start your gut health. Not only is it super strength, but it’s also super quality with the three strains having been comprehensively researched in the laboratory and clinically trialled on thousands of people who have experienced improved digestion, boosted natural immunity, lower inflammation and moderate reaction to allergies. If you’re interested, the three included strains are L.acidophilus NCFM, B. lactis HN019 and B. lactis BI-04, all of which means nothing to me at all, but I know that people will want to know what they are taking.
We previously tried Optibac for Babies and Children and I was impressed at how easy they were to incorporate in my kid’s daily life, and these have been no different. You just take one capsule with food, daily, preferably breakfast, and for those who can’t swallow tablets you can mix the contents of the capsule with a cold meal or drink. Ideal.
30 capsules is £35.99 and you can find them on OptibacProbiotics.co.uk where you’ll also find a stockist locator if you’d prefer to purchase in a bricks and mortar store.
*product received free of charge for review purposes
I used to have more blushers than I knew what to do with, but it seems that my love of blushers has been replaced by my love of foundations. I’ve tried so many amazing foundations in the past, as well as many that just haven’t suited my fussy skin at all, I should really stick with the ones I know work, but I just can’t resist the lure of a new base! And so it’s been a great pleasure to try out two of the Vichy Dermablend Foundations. The two foundations in question are Vichy Dermablend [3D Correction] in shade 15 Opal and Dermablend Corrective Fluid Foundation in shade 05 Porcelain. Having had a look at the website it would seem that Porcelain is the palest of eight shades available in the Corrective Fluid Foundation, while Opal is the palest shade available in the 3D Correction formula.
For reference, here are the shades and textures of each. On the left is the 3D Correction Foundation in Opal and on the Right is the Corrective Fluid Foundation in Porcelain.
At a glance I thought the 3D Correction foundation was a touch too dark, but the right pinkish tone for my cool skin, while I thought the Corrective Fluid foundation was pale enough but maybe a little too yellow but there was a chance they both might work for me when blended out.
Starting off with a review of the Dermablend [3D Correction]. Tis foundation is designed for oily, acne-prone skin with texture flaws. The premise of this foundation is that not only will it camouflage any blemish, but it will also smooth the skin’s surface to minimise the appearance of 3D imperfections and blemishes. As such, the texture of this is on the thicker side (but isn’t too thick at all) and it promises to provide an even, smooth, matte finish for up to 16 hours and includes skincare ingredients such as salicylic acid and eperulin. In addition, they suggest that for this product, all you need is this, no primers, no concealers, just the foundation, meaning if you are blemish prone, you can avoid having to layer with heavy make up.
With my dry, fussy skin, I’ve found that some products really work for me with a buffing brush, but others work better for me with a damp sponge blender and so I applied this with my blender. The results were as near to flawless as I could possibly hope for. The colour match was also pretty much perfect for me. The one thing I didn’t realise was that you could apply this in layers if necessary to cover blemishes, and so I did reach for my concealer, however since learning to add a touch more to a blemish and then gently press it into the skin (either with a finger or I have tiny little sponges which I prefer), I’ve been able to ditch the concealer when wearing this foundation. I absolutely love it and it lasted all day with no issues at all. It is very matte, and although my skin is dry rather than oily, I have found this works very well for me. Big thumbs up.
Moving onto the Dermablend Corrective Fluid Foundation. If you recall this is the one I thought might be a bit yellow toned for me, but colour wise, while not quite as perfect as Opal, Porcelain is definitely passable. This foundation promises to be high coverage and long wear for minor to moderate imperfections such as spots, scars, uneven skin tone and dark circles. It’s a lighter, more liquid texture than the 3D foundation and promises a natural looking finish. In addition it has SPF35. Now I must confess I’ve actually tried this foundation before and didn’t get on with it at all. I found it sat in my pores and just looked awful. However, that was before I discovered my new love of damp blenders. Previously I have buffed this in with a foundation brush, this time I applied with a sponge and the results were much much better. It didn’t sit in my pores at all. The coverage with this one is also good, but I did find that for some of my angrier blemishes I needed a touch of concealer. Wear time on this was slightly less than the other formula, but still good, lasting me all day before it started to wear and shine. The finish is less matte and indeed more natural. I like this one too, but not as much as the 3D, I’d be inclined to reach for this one more as a day wear foundation, with the 3D for special occasions or nights out. I apologise for the following photograph, it doesn’t give a brilliant idea of how it looks, I’ve struggled with how sunny it’s been the last few days, but hopefully it will give you a bit of an idea of the shade and finish.
So in conclusion, I like both of these foundations, but I LOVE the Dermablend [3D Correction] formula the most. I would absolutely recommend them to anyone who suffers, like I do (even at the ripe old age of 42) with blemishes, or anything they want to cover up.
I recommend Escentual.com, where you’ll find the Dermablend Fluid Corrective Foundation at £12.00 for 30ml (usual price £18) and the Dermablend [3D Correction] Foundation at £14.33 (usual price £21.50).
You can also find further information on all Vichy Dermablend Products on the Dermablend Website.
*Products received free of charge for review purposes
Just a quick, non-beauty related post today, mostly to say that if you currently follow me and read my blog via Bloglovin, I’m about to ask them to take my blog down and deactivate my account, so please please try and find another blog reader to use! I have today stopped following ALL of the blogs I read via Bloglovin and moved them all over to Feedly. It’s early days for me using this as a blog reader, but so far I’m happy. It’s not as aesthetically pleasing as Bloglovin unfortunately, but unless something changes in the next 24/48 hours (when I plan to remove my blog from Bloglovin) then this move is necessary.
If you read and support blogs and bloggers, or if you are indeed a blogger yourself, I would urge you to do the same thing. Bloglovin have recently made changes that mean that you don’t have to leave their site in order to read posts. They’ve even included commenting as a feature. The problem with this, in basic terms, is that your favourite bloggers no longer get your traffic. By proxy this means their blog receives less views, and even worse, for bloggers who make a living from their blog, Bloglovin are potentially affecting their income.
And there are other issues as well, such as bloggers potentially being penalised by Google for duplicate content, or the moral issue of all our content being used without permission on another site. It’s complicated, but the general feeling is, its not okay.
As time passes you are likely to find several blogs you follow disappearing from Bloglovin, and I urge you to keep following us elsewhere and not to support such a sneaky move by Bloglovin.
It’s not okay, I won’t support it, many bloggers also won’t support it and I urge you do stop using it either for blog reading, or for your blog.
I’m going to leave it 24/48 hours to give you all a chance to read this post, and then I will be requesting my feed be removed from their site and deactivating my account. Unless by some miracle they remove this feature.
I do hope you choose to keep reading, you can find me on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and as I say, you can add me to other blog reading sites. Please do!
When the actress of the moment, Emma Watson, proclaims DHC Perfect Pro Double Protection Mascara is her favourite mascara to wear on set, then I’m all ears. If there’s a mascara that won’t smudge, won’t run when my eyes water and stays put all day, then I want to try it out.
As you might imagine from this Japanese brand, the packaging is simple, the product looks simple but performance is excellent. I absolutely love the brush, I can’t bear mascaras with big brushes, this one is perfect and allows me to grab every individual lash with ease.
So what’s so amazing about this mascara? In essence, it’s a tubing mascara, one coat wraps each lash in a water resistant tube. It does not clump, flake or smudge and nor does it run. You won’t need fancy make up removers, this removes with ease with just warm water. I’ve tried, it comes off easily. Cold water won’t remove it, just warm, so you don’t need to worry about the rain. And most amazingly for me it doesn’t transfer at all to my upper eyelids. I not only have hooded eyes, but in addition they are starting to sag with age. Eye liners and mascaras always seem to transfer on me, but this doesn’t move a single bit. Amazing.
The finish might not be for those who want huge amounts of drama, but I find the finish is perfect for me. Every single lash is coated, black, and elongated, no clumping. I can add length easily by applying one or two coats as normal and then a final coat just to the tips (if needed!). As I’ve previously mentioned my left eyelashes are shorter and straighter than those on my right eye but its very easy to make them look equal with this mascara. I’m absolutely delighted with it.
In my personal opinion I much prefer this to the mascara I featured in my last post, with that one, as time goes on I’m more and more disappointed with my purchase. This however, is absolutely brilliant and I would go as far as to say one of the best I’ve ever tried. It’s easy to apply, doesn’t transfer, is easy to remove and gives me separated, natural looking lashes.
You can purchase the DHC Perfect pro Double Protection Mascara here for £15.90.
*product received free of charge for review purposes
I recently decided to treat myself to a new mascara, the one I had just really wasn’t cutting it anymore and after some research, chiefly the MrsGloss&TheGoss Facebook Page, I decided to plump for Benefit Roller Lash. I remember the hype when it was released, but I just haven’t needed a mascara for ages. I also found the price point of £20.50 a little off-putting, but I had a voucher code for Feel Unique and wanted another product so I took the plunge.
It’s a roller for lashes. The eye-opening Hook ‘n’ Roll brush grabs, separates, lifts and curls…while the instance curve setting formula holds for 12 hours.
So that brush, well although I know they are there, the hooks aren’t easy to spot. But what I do like about it is that it isn’t a huge brush, I don’t get on with big mascara brushes, so this one was easy enough to use without stabbing myself in the eye or covering my eyelid in mascara.
To describe my lashes, I have one side where my lashes are pretty good. A good length and just behave generally well and on my other eye the lashes are rubbish. In the outer corner they cross over each other and they are shorter and straighter than my other lashes. I try to even them out by curling only the dodgy side, and that works well, and I tend to put a third light coat on those lashes too, concentrating on the tips of my lashes to create a tiny bit of extra length. It works for me, but I should probably just get some lash extensions and stop all the faff at some point! Until then though, on the days when I can be bothered, that’s my routine, so I was hoping that Roller Lash would add some extra curl to that side.
So here it is on my lashes, top only for some reason (I think I forgot my bottom lashes that day!), and then I’ll talk about the pros and cons.
So there we have it, it’s a nice mascara, I like it and will definitely use it up. For me it’s a good every day mascara for sure, it’s just quite as impressive as I’d hoped it’d be, and perhaps it’s a victim of the hype. My expectations were perhaps unrealistic, considering this is a perfectly good mascara.
It ticks lots of boxes for me, and I’d definitely recommend it, just with the caveat that people should have realistic expectations. It isn’t the best mascara I’ve ever tried, it is however very good.
Mother’s Day is looming here in the UK and while I think about my lovely Mum lots, and my Mother in Law, I also think of myself. It’s not because I’m selfish, but rather that I’m required to put together a list for my husband of things I might like from the kids. I had some info through the other day from Institut Esthederm and I’ve got to say, a pamper package of their products sounds right up my street right now. Life is stressful and one thing I could really do with is a good pamper session.
Institut Esthederm products utilise Cellular Water, a key ingredient which optimises the cells’ energy environment and boosts activity. I’m not sure what that means really but I’m hazarding a guess that it basically means it optimises cell turnover which slows down as you age. Well since the ageing stick seems to have given me an almighty whack over the last year, I’m all for optimised energy environments!
If you, or your Mum are looking for a beautiful pamper package for Mother’s Day, give these products a whirl, I’m putting them on my list and crossing my fingers!
Eye Contour Lift Patches (10 x 3ml – £53). Ideal for those who are suffering with jet lag or stress, these promise to eradicate the effects of tiredness, revitalise the skin and plump and tone the eye area. Sign me up!
Intensive Hyaluronic Mask (75ml – £31.00).This mask smooths the skin and rehydrates. By now, there can’t be many beauty lovers who aren’t aware of the benefits of hyaluronic acid, but just in case, hyaluronic acid is a molecule that is naturally present in the skin and it is the skin’s water reserve. This mask rehydrates both the surface of the skin as well as the deeper layers.Find Institut Esthederm at Feel Unique and Look Fantastic.
Planning has been on my radar for ages and I did blog about my Journal a couple of years ago, but for some reason, it kind of fell by the wayside.
Just before Christmas the urge hit me for new stationery and stickers and after a bit of research I decided upon a MAMBI (Me & My Big Ideas) Happy Planner (classic size. I thought the layout looked like it’d suit me and I just love how customisable it is. Not only do MAMBI create lots of accessories for the Happy Planners, but so do lots of independent sellers too. There are a lot of different Happy Planners available but I settled on the Sugar & Type version for me and I purchased from Craftstars for about £28.
I think maybe, we’ll just show some pictures at this point!
The Monthly Layout:The Weekly Layout:Various Dividers:
At the end of each month is this lovely little back page:The attention to detail is brilliant and at the bottom of each page you’ll find a quote, a saying or a little illustration:
For the uninitiated, this a disc bound system, that means your pages slot onto the discs. It’s something to be aware of because it means you can only add compatible products to your Happy Planner. There is a Happy Planner Hole Punch but its very expensive and to be honest I’ve not needed it, but these are things to think about if going down the Planner route.
One of the very attractive features of the Happy Planner are the compatible accessories, from extension packs, to stickers, to pens, pencil cases, you name it, there’s so much available. I however just bought some spare note paper, a pack of pockets to stores stickers in, and then some expander rings, because once I’d added the card pockets, my Planner was stuffed, the expander rings give you much more space.
So the thing with Planner Addicts is that its not just about planning your life and running a diary, it’s a hobby in itself, and a big part of that is decorating your planner. While you can buy MAMBI branded stickers, they were a bit boring for my tastes and that’s when I discovered the Etsy world of Planner Stickers and accessories. It’s a slippery slope…Today Divider, Weekly Layout and Monthly Layout Stickers from Bits of Stationery:Cute Stickers from HappyCutieStudio: Halloween and Unicorn Kisses Weekly Stickers by EllenBeeMakes:Trust me when I tell you I bought and used many more than this, and without a doubt my two favourite Etsy Stores are Bits of Stationery and HappyCutieStudio, so do check them out.
Decorating your planner in this way isn’t cheap though and so I thought I’d have a go at creating my own. I was lucky and received a Silhouette Portrait for Christmas, this clever machine comes with software to design your stickers, then you print them out on sticker paper and the Silhouette cuts them out for you. I’ve not bought any stickers since I got it. It’s brilliant and probably deserves a blog post all of it’s own, but for now, here are some of the stickers I’ve made for myself.
This Ombre name sticker is on the front page of my Happy Planner and was the first sticker I made!
And then some weekly layouts:
And that is my Happy Planner. I can highly recommend it both as a means to organise your life but also as a hobby, regardless of whether or not I’ve designed the stickers, Sunday is always Planner Sticker Day, where I sit down decorate and fill in the next week, it cements my chores and appointments for the week ahead in my head, and is a calming activity to do, and designing my stickers is always fun!
It’s well documented on this blog that my skin is tricky to care for, but it seems pretty well controlled at the minute other than the occasional blemish and what seems to be the very sudden onset of ageing (it’s like I woke up one morning and was suddenly 10 years older), otherwise though, the dryness is mostly under control, blemishes are far less frequent and its not too bad, but it could be better. And that’s where Vichy Laboratoires Idealia Peeling comes in.
So what is it? Idealia Peeling is a water-light liquid applied to the skin at night, before your night cream that refines your pores, improves your skin texture and smooths fine lines in four weeks. The peeling action is gentle (4% Glycolic Acid and 5% Hepes), and promises an improvement to radiance, softness and brightness when used nightly for a month.
I’ve got all the blurb here but I’m not a big fan of typing out scientific facts I don’t really understand here, so lets stick to my opinions!
First up, application. Easy to apply, you just simply add to your cotton wool pad and apply to your clean skin, then apply your moisturiser and head to bed. I find I get a slight tingling when I apply but it’s comfortable. This isn’t an in depth review as I haven’t been using it long enough, but I wanted to give a heads up because for those of us with sensitive skin, this is brilliant. I’ve had no adverse effects so far, but when I wake in the morning my skin feels so smooth and soft. I’ve been using this for a few days now and I swear to god, I think my fine lines (not the deep ones – boo!) look a little less obvious. A little goes a really long way and I’m very optimistic that in a couple of weeks I’ll be glowing! I’m seriously impressed, as someone who breaks out at the drop of a product name, to use something as scary sounding as a peel and not have my skin freak out is a big deal!
You might be wondering what the record is in the background? Well that’s because Vichy have teamed up with DJ Becky Tong and as part of the new campaign Becky can be seen revealing her glowing skin from behind some of her top albums covers, and Skin by Flume is her favourite 🙂
Vichy Laboratoires Idealia Peeling is £30 for 100ml and is available from Boots nationwide as well as Boots.com
*products received free of charge for review purposes
I was excited to see bareMinerals launch a line of matte liquid lipsticks, not only do I really love a matte finish and a liquid lipstick but with such a good range of colours (10), I was optimistic I would find a nude that would suit me. I searched for swatches online and decided upon Swag.
The Gen Nude collection is quite large and also includes Gen Nude Buttercream Lipglosses as well as Gen Nude Under Over Lip Liners, but I actually opted for a bareMinerals Marvelous Moxie Lipliner in the shade “Thrilled”. I suspect, but don’t quote me on it, that these are being discontinued, but they are currently still available on lots of sites. I opted for this as I was able to find decent swatches whereas with the new Gen Nude lip liners, I couldn’t be sure what I was buying would match my Matte Liquid Lipcolour.
When I compared the liner and Lipcolour in swatches, they didn’t seem like a good enough match but actually on my lips they work perfectly together, and the Thrilled lip liner actually works with quite a lot of my existing products. Otherwise though, I don’t find it remarkable, in fact it feels a little draggy when I apply it, but it does do the job and I’m using it almost daily. The twist up mechanism is good, but I do feel like I am flying through the product and maybe a pencil would have been better value for money in the long run.
Marvelous Moxie Lipliner in Thrilled Left and Gen Nude Matte Liquid Lipcolor in Swag, Right:
Swag is the most perfect lipstick I’ve ever owned. Honestly I’m not exaggerating! Firstly, I adore the colour, it is my perfect everyday shade and the formula is amazing. It goes on smoothly and feels creamy on application, but it dries quickly and it does so without sucking the moisture out of my lips. This is important because I can be a bit prone to dry lips in the first place, but this doesn’t make it worse in anyway, once it’s dried I cannot feel it on my lips at all. I also find the wear time on this is amazing, if I apply at 8am it will still be visible at tea time, with the only exception to this being if I’ve eaten something greasy. Otherwise, while it does fade, it fades evenly and very slowly. I will definitely need more of these in my life.
I bought both of these products from Escentual, with my own money, because at the time of purchasing, and at the time of writing, the products are on offer. The Gen Nude Matte Liquid Lipcolors are £14.45 (RRP £17) and the Marvelous Moxie Lip Liner is £11.05 (RRP £13).
People who have been with me since this blog started will know that my skin has been an ongoing battle for a long time. Plagued with dryness and spots, as well as natural ageing and reactive skin, has meant finding suitable skincare has been not easy. Products designed for spots tend to aggravate my dryness while products for dry skin nearly always break me out. It’s frustrating! There have been several rave reviews of brands/products over the years all of which still stand, but for some reason I tend to find that after a while (often months) everything goes back to normal (bad). I have no idea why that is, but it means the search is only ever over temporarily.
That’s why I am blogging today with some hesitance! But I’m here to share my love for the Body Shop Vitamin E Range. The Vitamin E range is extensive and I certainly don’t have all the products in the line, but I’ve added the products I am using, one at a time, slowly so I can see what suits me and what doesn’t.
The Vitamin E range can help to protect against pollution and is great for premature ageing. What I really love about it is that it seems to be deeply moisturising, without being too rich for my skin. Quick reviews of all the items I have, below
Vitamin E Gentle Facial Wash (£7.50 – 125ml) – This is brilliant stuff. I heard that foaming cleansers dry out your skin but I don’t think this one does. A little goes a long way and has no issues at all removing my make up. It’s lightly foaming, feels rich and creamy and doesn’t leave my face feeling tight and dry. Win!
Vitamin E Hydrating Toner (£7.50 – 250ml) – Alcohol free toner that leaves my skin feeling ready to go! Has a slightly thicker than water texture, as if it’s a gel maybe. I apply this twice a day religiously. Lovely stuff and a brilliant price. Actually the whole range is!
Vitamin E Aqua Boost Essence Lotion (£10 – 160ml) – This was my latest purchase and I wasn’t sure what it was for and I’m still not. I love it anyway because it just slots into my routine. Again this is not watery, like a traditional toner, it’s slightly thicker than the Hydrating Toner and I’d describe it as a serum/gel. You add a couple of drops to your hand and pat into your skin after toner, before moisturiser. It absorb very quickly, leaving no residue on the skin and I think just adds another layer of moisture and protection against free radicals.
Vitamin E Intense Moisture Serum (£14 – 30ml) – It’s been a long time since I’ve used a serum. I found nearly everything I tried in the past caused me to break out, either too rich or too packed full of silicones. This one is so light in texture, it leaves my skin feeling amazing after application and isn’t at all greasy.
Vitamin E Overnight Serum in Oil (£16 – 28ml) – This is the product I was most nervous about using, my spot prone skin doesn’t get on well with oils, but I’m pleased to say I’ve had no problems with this at all! I use four drops massaged into my skin every night before bed and wake up to soft moisturised skin.
Vitamin E Moisture Cream (£13 – 50ml) – Out of all the products I have, this is the one I think of as my hero product. I use it daily, morning and evening, after all the other products and I think it works like a charm, Containing not only vitamin E but also hyaluronic acid this is the product that I really think stamps out my dryness. If feels so moisturising, but not at all rich, it is light and smooths in easily and quickly without leaving residue on my face. All the other products help my skin be plumper, and less dry, this is the one that the keeps it this way
Vitamin E Nourishing Night Cream (£14 – 50ml) – This is the one product that doesn’t suit me too well. I kind of knew it wouldn’t be great for me when I bought it, but I was optimistic given my successes with the rest of the range. It is just too rich for me, and applying all over my face definitely results in me waking up with blemishes, on my chin especially. I have however found it especially useful when my skin is really suffering. Like my nose was after a recent cold. I used this every night afterwards on my nose which was dry and red from constant nose blowing, and this really soothed and helped.
Vitamin E Refreshing Eyes Cube (£9.50 – 4g) – The name of this one annoys me because it’s not a cube! I know it’s supposed to be a play on Ice Cube, but still! Leaving that aside, eye cream is another product I’ve avoided for a while after two huge break outs under my eyes from creams that were too rich. Annoying because I know the skin around my eyes looks and feels so much better and less wrinkly when I use it. This one is fab! A twist up stick of cooling cream, although I’d describe it more as a balm, it glides on and cools. I use it morning and night and have had no issues so far. It’s worth mentioning that this has a tiny amount of sparkle, I find it very hard to spot, so you don’t need to worry about glittery eyes, but it’s worth knowing it’s there! My under eyes definitely feel plumper and smoother.
Finally, and not pictured is the Vitamin E Hydrating Face Mist (£10 for 100ml). I don’t use this Face Mist as part of my skincare routine but instead keep it with my make up and use it as a finishing spray to set everything in place. I’m sure it’ll come into its own in Summer too!
I read over on British Beauty Blogger that The Body Shop may be up for sale… this will just be terrible new for my face!
Anyway, I wholeheartedly recommend this range, so do head over to The Body Shop website and check it out!
*All Products purchased by me and opinions unbiased!