Just Charlie G

Color Wow Coconut CocktailColor Wow Coconut Cocktail is the second Bionic Tonic I’ve tried out (you can see my Kale Cocktail review here) and I’m absolutely loving them. In the most basic terms, these are leave in conditioners or treatments.

A recap on my hair, lots of bleach but holding up quite well despite that, fluffy and prone to frizzies even before bleach, but more so now with a touch of dryness. That said, I’ve been using the Kale Cocktail for quite some time now so perhaps that’s why my hair is holding up so well!

Okay so while the Kale Cocktail is for strengthening weak hair that is prone to breakage, the Coconut Cocktail bonds a lubricating layer to the hair’s surface to restore silkiness which is just what my hair needs.

To use, you just apply a coin sized amount to damp hair. The size of the coin depends on the amount of hair you’ve got, and I have found its a bit of trial and error to get it right.  Apply it to the lower sections and ends of your hair, comb through and if at all possible dry your hair with a hair dryer, it will accelerate and enhance the effects of the product.

The other great thing is that you can combine the Cocktails, so for the first couple of washes after I’ve had my hair coloured/lightened, I use both Kale and Coconut, before switching to using just Coconut alone.

My hair is always going to be a bit fluffy, that’s my hair type, but wow, Coconut leaves my hair feeling and looking much nicer, and smoother. Oh and it smells glorious.

Color Wow Coconut Cocktail That picture is actually a few weeks old now, my hair is a little blonder, a good couple of inches shorter and looking better than ever. £22 will get you 200ml and it lasts and lasts, becuase you need to use so little.

I’ve said it before but I definitely recommend these Cocktails, and actually everything I’ve tried from Color Wow, so do check the website out!


*Product received free of charge for review purposes

Bleach London Silver

Today I’ve got a Massive Rave for you. To begin at the beginning, a year ago my hair was like this:

10560961_1599460076947268_189398091_nIf you regularly read my blog you’ll notice that my hair has been getting lighter and lighter thanks to my fab hairdresser Laura. It was beautiful warm tones but I’ve been wanting to try taking my hair cooler for quite some time, I’m cool toned anyway so I just wanted to know what it’d be like and last week Laura came round and took me the lightest I’ve been with a gorgeous balayage colour but it was still pretty warm. Cooling the tone down was up to me so I hit up Boots and decided upon the Bleach London Silver Shampoo and Conditioner in order to take out some of the yellow and warm tones in my hair.

So here’s how my hair looked the morning after it was recently done. Sorry, it’s not styled!

Bleach London Silver

Silver shampoos and conditioners work by neutralising brassy tones, and so the products are violet. In the case of the Bleach London products the shampoo is incredibly vividly coloured, it’s hard to believe it won’t leave your hair purple, while the conditioner is a much more pastel shade.

Bleach London Silver Bleach London Silver

The recommendations are to use the shampoo every other wash, but I have been using it every single wash, and I’m using the conditioner once a week but using my normal conditioner at every other wash. The silver shampoo feels a bit odd to use, it doesn’t seem to distribute easily through my hair, its not terrible but its a bit of effort, but I would say that it leaves my hair very clean, but it also seems slightly drying. Not a concern, my hair feels like silk after I’ve conditioned. The conditioner is creamy and smooth and works as well as my usual conditioners.

After the first wash I didn’t notice any difference in my hair, but after two washes it was markedly cooler. I am amazed!

Bleach London Silver It’s now a couple of weeks on and my hair is amazing. Alright, the next photo has an instagram filter on it, but my hair is so blonde, so soft and I love it so much I want more blonde!
Bleach London Silver The Bleach London Shampoo and Conditioners are £6 each for 250ml bottles and I was worried that as I have such thick hair I’d get through the product really quickly but its lasting really well. The scent is light and inoffensive but the results are incredible and speak for themselves! My hair also feels amazing which is pretty important when you’re bleaching your hair!

I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend. I purchased mine from Boots, but you can also purchase from BleachLondon online.

*products purchased by me with my own money!

Osmo is a hair care brand I wasn’t familiar with at all, however, I had heard the name. It’s surprising really that I’m not more familiar with the brand as they have just celebrated their 15th Anniversary so they are not a small brand, in fact, as a professional brand, they are known and loved the world over but professionals and their clients.

To celebrate the anniversary, the 1st of June saw Osmo relaunch with new look packaging as well as having been busy creating new products to compliment their existing lines.

The range is huge, there is something there for everyone, whether you’re looking for shampoo, conditioner, treatment masks or styling products. Whatever your hair type, there’s something suitable.

I received the Osmo Colour Mission Silverising Shampoo, Silverising Violet Mask and the the Violet Protect and Tone Styler to try out. The range is designed for highlighted, bleached and blond shades, as well as silver and grey hair, and aims to tone your colour,  neutralising yellow, without stripping. Actually, the range isn’t ideal for my hair as I want to keep my warm tones and I was afraid to really try it out in case I lost the warmth, but I tried them out anyway, just a couple of times so I could see how my hair felt.

Osmo SilverisingJust to give you the low down on my hair, its very very fine but I have a lot of of it so my hair appears to be incredibly thick. It’s also quite dry thanks to the blonde, and very prone to frizz. I can tell usually on the first use whether a product is good for my hair or not by the way my hair feels while the products are in use, if they are not moisturising enough my wet hair feels like dreadlocks, and its awful when its dry. The Osmo products are sulphate free and this too can have an effect on my hair, making it feel dryer and creating more frizz.

I’m pleased to report all of the above products passed the test on my tricky hair. The Silverising Shampoo is not a new product, it’s just had a new design. Its a glorious purple colour and left my hair clean and soft, while producing a lovely lather. The Violet Mask is a beautiful product too. Apply it to your towel dried hair and leave on for 3-5 minutes, or, if your hair is particularly dehydrated, leave it on for 10-15 minutes, then rinse out.

These two products felt so gorgeous on my bleach damaged hair, and left my hair soft, clean and manageable. Perfect. The Silverising Violet Protect and Tone Styler is another new product, essentially it’s a leave-in conditioner, that tones your hair too. It protects against heat damage and unwanted brassiness. I have a love hate relationship with leave-in conditioners, they often make my hair feel unclean, or give me spots on my scalp, this however didn’t. It just left my hair soft and manageable again.

Although these weren’t the perfect products for my hair, and I won’t continue using them, there’s no denying the quality, or how gorgeous my hair felt after use. So much so I will now look into the other products and purchase something from Osmo that is perfect for my hair. I’m thinking perhaps the Colour Save line, or the Blinding Shine line or even the Deep Moisturising products.

Price Info:

OSMO Colour Mission Silverising Shampoo £7.90

OSMO Colour Mission Silverising Conditioner £7.90

OSMO Colour Mission Silverising Violet Mask 100 ml £3.00 300ml £7.95

OSMO Colour Mission Violet Protect and Tone Styler £8.80

The new look products haven’t launched yet on the Osmo website, however, you can use the Where To Buy section of the site to find your nearest stockist.

*Products received free of charge for review purposes.

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)

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)


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

Hello! Hope you’re all well! I’m Karen from LiverpoolLashes Blog here doing my first guest post ever on Charlie’s blog!

Today I wanted to talk to you about my essential beauty products for summer.  If you’re anything like me I like to sieve out my regular products a little for the warmer weather, keep things a more minimal for make up but add more skin protecting products instead so lets get started.

Vaseline Spray & Go Cocoa Radiant – The last thing you want to do in the summer is apply a thick body butter so this product is ideal.  It’s a fine mist that barely needs rubbing in as it sinks right into the skin at a lightning speed and smells amazing.  It’s also lso available in Aloe Fresh and Essential Moisture.

Dove Hair Therapy Leave-In Conditioning & Care Spray – At this time of year it’s not just your skin that needs that extra boost of moisture.  This is another fairly new product that helps prevent breakage and split ends.  It can be applied to wet or dry hair and once it’s on it’s weightless so there’s no feeling of limp, weighed down hair.  Your hair is left feeling super soft with a gorgeous scent.

Fresh Sugar Rose Lip Treatment – Lips can often be forgotten when applying your SPF so this is a perfect ‘on the go’ product with an SPF 15 whilst also providing essential hydration with a subtle rose coloured tint.

Origins GinZing Energy Boosting Moisturiser – Probably my favourite face moisturiser ever and that’s really saying something.  This lightweight gel-like moisturiser is dribblesome with it’s fresh and zingy orange scent.  It sinks in quickly so that you can apply your make up straight away and truly is really refreshing.  I’d even go as far as to say that this is actually one of my favourite parts of my morning routine.  Extremely highly recommended.

La Roche-Posay Effaclar Mat – This is a product I don’t hear an awful lot about but it’s really good.  Officially it’s a moisturiser that gives a matte finish but I use it as a skin mattifying base for my make up.  If I’m not wearing make up I use it just to take the shine away.  It really is a great product!

Urban Decay De-Slick – When the temperature rises it can definitely take it’s toll on our make up so thankfully Urban Decay have this amazing make up setting spray to keep your make up on for longer.  It’s available in a two sizes so perfect for your handbag as well as your dressing table.

17 BB Cream – Most of us like to keep things lighter with our make up but 17’s BB Cream is an unexpected favourite of mine.  The coverage is brilliant, far better than the higher end brands I’ve tried but still feels just like a moisture on your skin.  I have a full review with swatches on my blog for this one.

Maybelline The Rocket Waterproof Mascara – In summer I think that it’s a great look to go ‘fresh faced look’ with just a BB cream or tinted moisturiser and mascara.  Okay i’ll admit I threw this one in as a summer essential but it’s really a holy grail – there I’ve said it!  If you have straight lashes that don’t seem to hold a curl you need to read my blog post posted on the 24th June called ‘Keeping Straight Lashes Curled’ – it will change the way you think about your lashes!

If you made it to here then thank you and a massive thank you to Charlie for letting me write it!  I hope you enjoyed it half as much I enjoyed writing it.  If you did then feel free to come and visit my blog, I have a post up every single day which is mainly a product review but sometimes I post about my work as a nail technician & beauty therapist.

Karen x

Many thanks to Karen for helping out while I’ve been away, please do head over and take a look at her lovely blog!

Charlie x

At last, an idea so simple you wonder why it’s not been done before.

Concoction Professional Haircare

Okay so the deal is that you can have your own personal shampoo mixed, that will be geared exactly to your tastes/hair.

It’s simple, Pick your shampoo scent, the choices are Lemon Verbena, Bakhour (incense), Rosemary & Mint and Black Pepper Citrus). Each shampoo base is the same, enriched with essential oils, vitamin E, Pro Vitamin B5 and each is free of parabens and silicone and also contains an ionic system which means detangling, anti-static and frizz free hair.

Then you, the customer choose two out of the eight Superserums, (Back to your Roots (caring for your roots and scalp), Beautiful Brunette, Curl Me Up, Gimme More Moisture, High Definition Blonde, Ravishing Red, Thermo-Straight and Turn Up the Volume). They are then added to the base, shaken like a cocktail and sold to you for £14 each. It means you can tailor your hair care in many ways and it’s ingenious. Then there’s a Creme de Concoction Conditioner in Cashmere & White Lily (£16)

So I was sent Rosemary and Mint Shampoo, along with the High Definition Blonde and Turn Up the Volume Superserums. I mixed mine myself naturally and it was simple to do.
Concoction Professional Haircare

I wouldn’t have chosen the Rosemary and Mint Shampoo myself as I’m not keen on the smell, and I wouldn’t have chosen the Volumising Serum either as my hair has volume in abundance but the High Definition Blonde superserum I definitely would have chosen for my blonde highlights. Still undaunted I gave it ago. Not a massive fan of the Rosemary & Mint scent as I already mentioned but there’s no doubting this is a fantastic shampoo. On my hair it sort of enhances the volume rather than sending my hair crazy with volume thank goodness, but then that’s partly to do with how I style it. Other than that it leaves my hair completely tangle free (which isn’t often the case with silicone shampoos!) and very very soft. It’s very impressive. Plus it lathers beautifully too which I always like in a shampoo.

Then there’s the Cashmere &White Lily Conditioner which is again very beautiful and does lovely lovely things to my hair. I’ve recently gone a bit blonder and I find the blonde stays looking bright and shiny with this range and you can’t ask for more than that.

You can go to the main Beauty Hall in Selfridges to have your products mixed for you and you’ll be asked to leave your name and email address so you can go online and order your own blend easily. But this is only until the 8th August I believe and thereafter you can purchase from either Concoction.co.uk or Selfridges.com.

*Disclosure – PR Samples*

Her Haircare Rituals

I don’t like volume on the top of my head. My hair just looks weird when it’s high. I do however like my hair to look voluminous everywhere else where possible and thanks to HER Haircare Rituals products I’m seeing some fantastic volume in my hair, as seen above!

Firstly I love the packaging of the products, the simple black and white and the stylish logo.

Her Haircare Rituals

I’ve been using the Volumising Shampoo and Conditioner regularly since I received them and can give them a massive thumbs up despite a shaky start!

A little bit of info about the brand. The brand was co-created and is co-owned by John Barrowman. Seems a bit random, but who cares, it’s a great brand. HER is based in Italy’s Veneto region and the surrounding areas have inspired the bottles and scents of the products.

The Volumising Shampoo is enhanced with sweet almond protein to strengthen and fortify the hair which in turn gives more volume and more softness. The Volumising Conditioner feels like rubbing a face cream into your hair, it’s a strange sensation for someone so used to the slip of silicones! The reason it feels that is that it’s made with shea butter, then there are passion flower and acai oils along with rice bran an wheat germ oils and a dose of ginseng.

So about that shaky start I mentioned. Me and my hair love silicone and most forays into silicone free shampoos and conditioners and the Her shampoo and conditioner are both Silicone free to say my hair objected is to put it mildly. My hair reacted by turning itself into a massive clump of tangled hair as I shampooed. It was painful to try and get the conditioner through it with a wide tooth comb. However, once I was out of the shower my hair was soft and clean feeling and definitely volumised. So I persevered. Next wash I used the same, wide tooth comb at the ready, teeth gritted. Nothing. The shampoo lathered with no tangling, the conditioner slid through my tangle free hair with ease. And that’s how it’s been every wash since. I’m sold. I can only assume that I had some build up of something that the HER products removed but that there was some kind of initial clash of products or something. Who cares anyway, now it’s lovely. It smells gorgeous, fresh and clean and it leaves my hair soft and volumised.

And then there’s the Volumising Powder. The pot feels as though it has nothing it it, and to be honest I’m not sure how much is in there but you need very little so we’ll just have to see how long it lasts, but this powder is more than your average backcomb dust (which I usually avoid since I don’t like height on my crown). The powder adds body and texture but it does more. It gives the volume of a mousse, has the texture of a clay without being at all heavy, it controls like a hair spray and and can be reactivated, meaning you can just restyle without having to redo from scratch. It also cleans and refreshes. So versatile. I apply this to the roots of my hair, around the top, but avoiding the very crown of my head so that the volume is at the sides. Works like a charm.

Her Haircare Rituals

Volumising Shampoo £15

Volumising Conditioner £17

Volumising Powder £14

All available from thisisher.co.uk
*Products were all sent for review purposes and thank goodness for that, they are amazing!*

Really loving Mark Hill hair products at the moment! I’m using lots of them on rotation but I’d give you a quick run down of my three favourites today.

Starting with Only Takes a Minute – 60 Second Detox Gloss Treatment.

Mark Hill 60 Second Detox Gloss Treatment

A really fantastic budget product! Does exactly what it says on the tin (so to speak). Shampoo, then slap on this stuff. Shave your legs or something then rinse away and get lovely glossy hair. Really impressed. At £6.29 this is a great product to have in your arsenal. I’m using once a week as I’m alternating with other lovely products but I’d probably go for twice a week if I wasn’t.

Next, Colour Blast Hydration Bomb Intensive Treatment.

Mark Hill Colour Blast Hydration Bomb Intensive Treatment

Another product that does exactly what it says on the tin. A creamy cocktail of ingredients to intensively treat coloured hair. Apply all over, leave it on for at least three minutes, or as long as overnight if you wish, then rinse it out, thoroughly. Really effective and leaves my hair silky smooth after use. I’ve yet to try it for any great length of time, going for five minutes as a rule when I’m in the shower. I use in place of my usual conditioners, and again, I’m going for about once a week. £6.49. Again, great value.

Finally (for today!) Magic Drops Rescue & Repair Treatment.

Mark Hill Magic Drops Rescue & Repair Treatment

For a while I just thought this was a finishing serum. I don’t know why, I read the title of the product and totally disregarded it. I think just because of the style of packaging I just made an assumption. Anyway, it’s not, it’s a repair treatment that is full of vitamins and minerals. They recommend a drop is all you need (I use two drops worth (although it’s hard to gauge what a drop is when it’s a cream that comes out of a pump!)). I apply it  all over my damp hair before styling as usual, you don’t need to rinse it out and you can use it on dry  hair as well if you prefer. It suits me really well, I tend to use this on my hair when it’s damp, then dry my hair, or leave it to dry, and once dry use an oil or finishing serum. This product is also £6.49.

I really like this range which is broken down into catgories, for coloured hair, de-frizzing, straight hair, big hair, holiday hair, Big Night Out and so on and its effective and purse friendly. I’m using the above in conjunction with a shampoo and conditioner which isn’t quite right for my hair type but still leaves my hair silky soft and my hairs looking and feeling great at the moment.

You can buy all of the above from www.boots.com.

*PR Samples*

Yuko Phitenbella Shampoo & Conditioner

I have to confess I’d not heard of Yuko hair products before now but I’m well and truly sold, this shampoo and conditioner are absolutely wonderful.

Yuko are a Japanese brand, created in 1996 by Yuko Yamashita and I understand the brand’s speciality is Straightening. Yuko worked together with Phiten, a Japanese sports, health and beauty company to create a range of products. I’m not sure how long the range has been available in the UK, but I’m surprised not to have heard of them before now as the products are so great.

I’ve been using the Phitenbella Shampoo and Phitenbella Treatment which are the products designed for dry/chemically treated hair and they contain both collagen and keratin. I note both products contain silicones.  I must stress as always that I don’t mind one jot about silicones, and I think my hair really needs them, most of my adventures with silicone-less shampoos have resulted in fly away, frizzy and eventually dry hair. I only mention silicones for those who prefer to avoid them. Personally, I actively look for them in my hair products 😉

I’ve been using these regularly, and these alone, for several weeks and my (which is quite processed) is soft, shiny and silky smooth. I don’t feel any product build up and an essential thing for me, it rinses away with ease so I don’t ever feel I have product in my hair.

Yuko Phitenbella Shampoo & Conditioner

Highly recommended. You can purchase from http://yuko-london.com/ where the Treatment and shampoo both retail at £12.50.

*Disclosure – PR Samples*

07. 02. 2013


Childs Farm Review

First of all I must apologise for the stock image there…I could have sworn I’d taken photos of the actual products…turns out I hadn’t and now they’ve all been used up…so I could stop this post there, the worlds shortest review, can there be any better review than “so good we used it all up”….

Anyhow, I’ll start at the beginning. Childs Farm is a truly British brand of bathtime goodies for children. The products are affordable, organic and free-from, with beautiful packaging that really appeals to kids. This is the first kids’s range to include argan oil  and my little monkeys both have lovely soft shiny hair as a result (actually they had lovely soft shiny hair in the first place, but dare I say it, they look a bit softer and shinier).

We tried out the shampoo, conditioner and bubble bath and all were given the big thumbs up by Chloe and Lola. They were both particularly taken with the scents… the shampoo and conditioner are both Strawberry & Organic Mint…. it’s definitely more strawberry milkshake than mint though, and the bubble bath is Organic Tangerine and gave us a lovely amount of bubbles (with sodium coco-sulfate as the foaming agent.

All in all this is a jolly good range and I should add that both of my girls suffer with eczema, one considerably worse than the other, and the products didn’t seem to affect the skin condition in any adverse way.

All the products are £4.69 and as well as the shampoo, conditioner and bubble bath there’s also a body wash in Organic sweet orange. Yum

Also available are various gift sets.

The range is available from John Lewis as well as www.childsfarm.com

*Dislcosure – PR Samples*