Just Charlie G

I recently received a beautiful package courtesy of Woods of Windsor. I’ll be honest, Woods of Windsor as a brand were not on my radar at all until this beautiful parcel arrived.

Woods of WindsorI think at a glance it’d be easy to see the products, read the scents and dismiss this brand as being for the older generation but a closer look reveals products that not only perform well, smell beautiful but are also affordable luxuries.

The range of products include Hand Creams, Hand Washes, Soaps, Drawer Liners, Dusting Powders, Bath and Shower Gels as well as much more.

Lets start by talking about the beautiful packaging. The whole range had a revamp in Autumn, drawing inspiration from both modern and vintage flower illustrations. Have a closer look, it’s beautiful and makes the products worthy of any dressing table or gift.

Woods of Windsor Woods of Windsor Woods of Windsor Woods of Windsor

Looking at the website, it would seem the main fragrance lines are White Jasmine, Honeyed Pear & Amber, Pomegranate & Hibiscus, Blue Orchid & Water Lily, True Rose, Lily of the Valleyand Lavender. I’ve not tried all of the scents, but let me tell you that all the products I have tried have been beautiful, but Honeyed Pear & Amber is absolutely stunning. White Jasmine (I LOVE Jasmine) and Blue Orchid & Water Lily are also worthy of special mention.

Honestly, this is one of the nicest ranges I’ve tried in a long, and not at all granny-ish!Woods of Windsor As for the products themselves, I have been especially enjoying the Bath & Shower Gels, as well as the Dusting Powder which I have been dusting on with wild abandon using it’s big fluffy powder puff. Even the kids beg for a dusting after their baths!

Truly a beautiful range and if you are still looking for Christmas Presents, you might not be too late so head over to the Woods of Windsor website to grab some beautiful gifts! Prices start at £6.99.

*Products Received Free of Charge for Review Purposes 

In true British style we all start to dress like there is a tropical heatwave the minute the sun makes an appearance.  We cast our winter-wear to the back of the wardrobe and have more skin on show.  In fact research from Boots UK shows that over half of women (53 per cent*) admit that once their winter tights and footwear are off, they stay off for the summer season – whatever the weather!

So whether rain, wind, sun or hail is around the corner, here is the Boots lowdown on how you can flash your summer-worthy skin with weather-proof confidence.

Summer Ready with Boots

Here are some tips from No7 Advisor Samantha Greaves:

 

  1. Brush off that winter skin….

41 per cent of women say that prepping their body by exfoliating, waxing and moisturising gives them the boost to take that leap into summer.  But don’t worry, getting your body ready for summer doesn’t mean hours of prep as simple tweaks will help you whizz through your routine and get even better results:

No7 Advisor Samantha Greaves explains:  “Contrary to what most people think, pores do not actually open and close – they do not have any muscles!  So to unclog them and get your skin beautifully buffed and glowing, ensure your skin is warm when you exfoliate (just after a bath or shower is perfect) as this helps to loosen up underlying dead skin and daily dirt.  It is also important to rinse your skin with the coldest water you can stand after you exfoliate to re-tighten the skin.”

Try rubbing Boots Tea Tree & Witch Hazel Body Scrub, £4.99*, into any areas that are oilier such as your back to avoid congestions as these can lead to breakouts.  For spot prone skin try finding a shower gel that contains Glycolic acid and salicylic acid to help remove any dead skin cells and regulate sebum production.

Summer Ready with Boots (2)I’ve been using this for a couple of weeks now and its been really great, I’ve got a spotty area, and I won’t tell you where, and this has been working well to clear that up. I love the fresh clean smell. It’s worth mentioning that usually Tea Tree Oil and I don’t usually get on, but I’ve got on well with this, so go figure. Also my keratosis pilaris on my upper arms, is looking pretty good right now. A definite recommendation.

 

  1. Massage your way to a trim tum

“My top tip on firming up your tummy is rubbing a rich body butter into your skin for a few minutes every day in the run up to your holiday.  This helps to stimulate circulation and keeps your skin looking even and toned.”

Try Botanics Rehydrating Body Butter, £8.00*, this indulgently rich body butter melts into the skin to soften, smooth and provide a long-lasting moisture boost.  Including shea, cocoa butter and coconut oil it intensively hydrates and conditions for ultimate moisturisation.

Summer Ready with Boots Summer Ready with BootsOh my gosh, this is amazing! The smell is incredible and I think you can see in the photos that the texture is rich and moisturising. A really good one if your skin is in special need of moisture as this is so moisturising and not too greasy, it feels very high quality, a very luxe product at a great price.

 

  1. Get that summer glow….

“Having a bit of colour on your skin can really help you feel more confident when it comes to flashing your flesh” explains No7 Advisor Samantha Greaves. “Try applying a gradual tan which not only gives skin a youthful glow but can also help it to appear smoother on the surface.  For even more definition try brushing a layer of instant tan on to your inner thighs to create contour effect.  If you’re not a fan of fake tan then try an aftersun with tan maintainer like Boots Soltan Aftersun Lotion with Tan Prolonger, £4.00 – this helps to build a beautifully natural tan whilst hydrating your skin.”

No7 Naturally Sun Kissed Gradual Body Tan, £9.95, is perfect for a beautiful light tan.  This gradual  tan deeply smoothes and moisturises skin optimising its condition for exposure to the sun whilst its gentle self-tanning ingredients leave behind a hint of beautiful colour that builds day by day into a natural looking year round glow.  It moisturises for up to 12 hours and contains a unique antioxidant complex to prepare skin for exposure to the sun.

To keep your tan and stay safe in the sun, why not try Boots Soltan Protect & Tan Ultra-Light Texture Suncare Spray, £7.  An SPF30 formulation with an innovative ingredient that helps stimulate your body’s natural tanning production whilst protecting you from the sun’s harmful rays.  This light-feeling spray disappears into your skin instantly leaving no sticky residue.  It provides continuous moisturisation for silky-soft skin, helping to prevent peeling.

*Products received Free of Charge for Review purposes.

Treaclemoon make beautiful bath and products at incredible prices with a range of delicious, scrummy scents.

I’m a regular buyer actually, the kids and I can’t get enough of the scents, the husband has even been known to have a go too.

What I didn’t know though was that Treaclemoon is a brand with a heart. They are officially partnered with Bulliesout, a charity that provides help and information to individuals, schools, workplaces and communities to work against bullying and encourage young people to recognise their self-worth and potential. Treaclemoon make monthly donations and have pledged to help raise further funds. A great cause I’m sure you’ll agree.

Treaclemoon kindly sent us a couple of bottles of their Bath & Shower Gel* to try out.

TreaclemoonIced Strawberry Dream is a gorgeous strawberries and cream scent, almost like ice cream and is hands down the kids favourite, but I absolutely adore Sugared Almond Tart, which smells exactly as it sounds, sweet and almondy.

It’s hard to believe but these large 500ml bottles are a brilliant £2.99 each and they last for absolutely ages. We don’t tend to use them as bubble bath, but we all use them to wash with and they are gorgeously foamy and smell incredible. You just can’t lose with these, they seem considerably more expensive than they actually are. Great products and there are lots more products in the line available, from body butters, to hand creams, be sure to check them out.

Available in Tesco Stores and Waitrose, or you can purchase online and find out more information on the Treaclemoon website.

*Items received free of charge for review purposes.

You may remember my blog post not too long ago about the Fortune Cookie Soap (FCS) Spring subscription box, with a Wonderland theme. The whole point of the quarterly subscription boxes are to give you a taste of the major collections, so you can make informed choices when shopping the full line when it’s released. Of course, its a treat in itself, so if you are able to exercise good will power, maybe you can stop with just the box, but that’s just not my style. You may also remember my blog post about some purchases I made from the Game of Thrones themed collection, Winter Has Come. Well some of those items I adored so much I had to stock up, and some I was still keen to try, so I added a few to my order as well. So here’s what I ordered from the Fortune Cookie Soap Wonderland & winter Has come collections.

Fortune Cookie Soap Winter Has COme Wonderland

 

So I’ll give you a run down first of all of the Wonderland Items I ordered.

It is a huge collection with multiple scents, and for each scent there were multiple products. I was unable to order a fraction of what I would have liked, so chose to pick one scent and get a few products, and then perfume oils from the other scents.

Based on all the things I smelled and used from the Spring Box, I opted to buy Twisted Tea Party products, as it was my favourite scent. Green tea, sweet herbs, vanilla bean, cucumber, golden amber, neroli, geranium and spearmint.  Its unusual, it’s fresh and perfect for Spring, its just amazing. Here’s what I got:

Twisted Tea Party Body Wash ($10.99)

Fortune Cookie Soap twisted Tea party Body WashThe FCS Body Washes are brilliant, heavily scented and they lather a huge amount so you don’t need to use a lot of product.

Twisted Tea Party Whipped Cream ($10.99)

Fortune Cookie Soap Twisted Tea Party Whipped Cream

FCS Whipped Creams are pretty much a hero product, light and fluffy, heavily moisturising but without being greasy. In the relatively short time I’ve been buying FCS products, these have quickly become a favourite.

Twisted Tea Party Cuticle Butter ($8.95)

Fortune Cookie Soap Twisted tea Party Cuticle ButterFortune Cookie Soap Twisted tea Party Cuticle Butter 2 This isn’t my first Cuticle butter, I have one from the Christmas collection, they work incredibly well on my parched fingers. They are essentially a blend of beautiful butters, shea and mango, as well as some gorgeous oils, sweet almond, olive, coconut, avocado, amongst others. It feels really greasy as you apply but absorbs really fast, I don’t know how they do it but its a great product.

Finally I bought the Twisted Tea Party Perfume Oil, along with a few more….($5.99 for 1 dram, each).

Fortune Cookie Soap Perfume OilsThe Perfume Oils are my absolute favourite Fortune Cookie Soap product. Being oils, you need very little, just a dab, and the smell is both strong and long lasting. As well as the Twisted Tea Party scent I also bought Keep it in the Family from the Winter has Come collection (Burgundy roses, carnations, and white florals with nuances of burgundy wine, sandalwood, and a hint of musk). I already own this one but the collection is soon to be discontinued to make way for new collections and I adore this so I needed a back up, I also added It’s Only a Dream, Almost Alice and Who Are You? from the Wonderland collection, they are all very different, and they are not just different from each other, but they are not the sorts of scents you’ll find sold anywhere else, they are beautiful and unusual. It’s Only a Dream is Verbena, lemongrass, calla lily, citrus, leafy greens, ylang-ylang, rosewood, ozone and hints of rose and soft musk, Almost Alice is Fresh green snap peas, juicy pears, sweet pea flowers, freesia and ripe berries. Really fresh and floral, and finally, Who Are You? is Crisp ripe pear, limes, vanilla orchid and raw cane sugar. I’d very much like to get the Body Wash and Whipped Cream in the latter scent.

That was all I could manage to afford from the Wonderland collection at the time of ordering but I added these to my order from the Winter Has Come, Game of Thrones themed collection:

Unsullied Shower Oil ($12.99)

Fortune Cookie Soap Unsullied Shower oilA warm arid blend of patchouli, sandalwood, and citrus with juicy notes of white peach and red mango. You may have spotted I already own this. It’s now sold out and unlikely to be restocked. A crying shame, its the best body product I have ever tried in my life. The scent is to die for, it lasts on my skin for hours and hours, its quick and easy to use and moisturising without being greasy (once soaked in which happens quickly). A glorious product.

No Middle Ground Hydrate Me ($9.99)

Fortune Cookie Soap no Middle Ground Hydrate me

Hydrate Me’s are essentially solid, in-shower, moisturisers. I really like them, so easy to use, while you are still in the shower, under running water, before you get out, rub this all over (careful, you don’t need much and if you use it in a hot shower it will melt away quickly), massage in, and leave to sink into your skin as you dry. These do feel heavy on the skin until they are absorbed. I find it takes about ten minutes, as such these are deeply moisturising and amazing for dry skin. The scent of this bergamot, intoxicating gardenia, fresh eucalyptus leaves and lavender flowers wrapped in neroli, and tea leaves and I love it!

Needle Sugar Scrub ($13.99)

Fortune Cookie Soap Needle Sugar ScrubHerbaceous cilantro, tart lemons, and lush green base notes of fresh grass and green tea leaves. This smells DIVINE! FCS scrubs almost feel moussey, they are so light and fluffy, but they have a really good amount of scrub to them. I can’t bear scrubs that don’t leave me feelings scrubbed, you know the sort, a thick cream with a few jojoba beads dotted through it, this is full of sugar, moisturising oils and is gorgeous.

I also got a few freebies in my box, three 1oz Whipped Creams to try, from their Christmas collection. I feel very lucky 🙂

Fortune Cookie Soap Whipped Cream

Some of these products shown are now no longer available, but most things still are, but probably not for long as the Spring Collections are retired to make way for Summer, so if you’ve seen anything you fancy, don’t wait long!

Shipping to the UK is not cheap, not at all, but for a treat, I would highly recommend, the products are beautiful, original and feel very treat-like.

All the products above, except the three samples at the end were purchased myself from Fortune Cookie Soap.

I’ve had my beady eye on Fortune Cookie Soap for a long long time. I never quite got round to placing an order, being afraid of the shipping charges and possible customs fees.

Eventually I managed to buy some products from a UK fan and try them out and I was hooked. I’ve since placed three orders and today I’m going to blog about my latest.

I watch a huge amount of TV, American TV in particular, and I’ve especially loved Black Sails, Battlestar Galactica and Sons of Anarchy. Without question, my most enduring favourite is Game of Thrones. I don’t know what it is about it but I know I’m not alone. And when I heard Fortune Cookie Soap (FCS from here on in) were releasing a Game of Thrones inspired collection I knew I’d have to partake.

I’m going to start with a little gripe, but it is my only gripe so I hope I’ll be forgiven, and thats the shipping. It’s extortionate meaning I have to very carefully limit what I purchase as the shipping increases with each product I add to my basket. I buy a lot from overseas and am very much used to a flat rate shipping fee, buying as many clothing items as I like from Black Milk in Australia for free, or make up for flat rates of $10.90. That said, I do appreciate that shower gels and jars of body lotion, are considerably heavier and as I say I really don’t know what the actual cost would be to say whether the charges are fair or not, but I do know I’d buy a lot more if my basket didn’t go up by $4 each time I add a body butter. In fact it’s the scrubs and body creams that seem to increase shipping the most so I can’t really afford to buy them.

Enough, when I do order, I do so knowing what I am paying in shipping and budget accordingly. There are also UK Group Orders done once or twice a year for the bigger launches so they are worth looking out for (try facebook).

Sooo the products I ordered.

P1160411 I can’t review most of these as I haven’t used them but I can talk about the scents.

Starting with the Valyrian Steel Body Wash $12.99 (£8.53 for 201ml)

P1160414
A blend of Italian bergamot, yuzu, fresh Meyer lemon and verbena perfectly blended with notes of olive leaf and sweet florals, finished with faint notes of patchouli, white musk, and cedarwood. It is BEAUTIFUL. I’m well used to the Body Wash formulas and they are highly lathering and heavily scented. A really fantastic product with the most stunning perfume.

Unsullied Shower Oil $12.99 (£8.53 for 201ml)

P1160413A warm arid blend of patchouli, sandalwood, and citrus with juicy notes of white peach and red mango. I’m delighted with this again. I’m so pleased with this collection, not only because of the Game of Thrones theme, but also because of my love of patchouli and earthy scents. This one is a touch lighter than the Body Wash thanks to the sweet fruit. It smells exotic and beautiful.

Take the Black Shampoo & Conditioner Combo Bar & Tin $9.99 and $4.25 respectively. (£6.56 and £2.79)

P1160408

P1160410Although Shampoo bars and Conditioner bars are not new for FCS, the combined bar is. The top layer is shampoo and the bottom layer is conditioner.  I’m not new to the concept of solid hair products having tried Lush’s offerings, but they always turned my hair to crap, and I’m told FCS’s products are so much better so I’m excited to try this. Again, the scent couldn’t be more up my street, inspired by Jon Snow, this is a beautiful combination of Leather and Amber.  Cannot wait to try this. The tin was just the obvious choice to store it in between uses.

Keep it in the Family Perfume Oil  (1 dram is $5.99 (£3.99) and 2 drams are $8.99 (£5.99))

P1160412Saving the best til last in my opinion, this is glorious. I’m also totally annoyed I didn’t buy the larger bottle. I did have a little leakage, but it was well wrapped and my bottle seems full enough so I’m no inclined to complain, although I do hear that the FCS customer service is excellent. As a consequence of the light leaking, I got this on my fingers as I unwrapped it a few hours ago. Clearly you don’t need much as I can smell it so strongly still, much to my joy.  Burgundy roses, carnations, and white florals with nuances of burgundy wine, sandalwood, and a hint of musk. I can smell it all, but I suppose overwhelmingly its musk and rose, it’s just, well stunning. Absolutely thrilled.

So all in all I’m absolutely chuffed to bits with this order. I’d like to go back and make another order for the larger Perfume Oil,  the Mother of Dragons Whipped Cream, the No Middle Ground Hydrate Me (my favourite products – a solid bar of moisturiser to be used on wet skin) and The Imp Mist Me, inspired by my favourite character Tyrion, it promises a rich blend of fresh black cherries, white wine, mahogany and teak woods, and a spicy note of freshly grated black pepper. I don’t get on with the Mist Me’s (body sprays) too well, finding the scent doesn’t last on my skin too well, I don’t even care, this sounds amazing.

So, despite the heavy shipping to the UK, I would highly recommend Fortune Cookie Soap products. innovative, unusual, functional and whimsical, who could resist!

Look out for the Soap Box subscription and the Alice in Wonderland themed collection due for Spring. I cannot wait.

Fortune Cookie Soap Website