Just Charlie G
Skin Science Moisturiser & Eye Cream

Skin Science is a new skincare brand from Norway apparently proven to delay skin ageing by 20% based on 5 key ingredients devised by the brand’s scientists and inspired by the country’s Arctic coastline.

I’m not going to go into the details of these 5 key ingredients for two reasons, one, its quite science-y and two, it’s a lot of reading.

It sounds like clever stuff anyway but I’m not going to pretend I’m scientific enough to understand the ingredients and what they are supposed to do. You can go to the very clever http://www.modestybrown.com/ for reviews that know what they are talking about when it comes to ingredients.

No, all I can judge is how product works for me. The packaging is nice, professional, I like the wave design reflecting the ingredients are inspired by the sea and it looks expensive. Both items I was sent to try are pump bottles too. I was sent the Bio Active Eye Contour Complex and the Bio Active Renewal Complex Cream.

As always, from the off, I’m going to start by saying this range is extremely expensive and whether it’s worth spending your money on is entirely subjective! Depends on the amount of money you have to spare, how much money you are prepared to invest in your skincare and so on.

First up the Bio Active Renewal Complex Cream (£95). Yep. £95. This moisturiser is for older skins, yes, thats me sadly and it claims to increase collagen production by up to 600% in just eight days. I did and didn’t like this product. Firstly the negatives. Well, there’s the price for a start, just too much for me. Then there’s the fact that it wasn’t quite moisturising enough. It was fine on all my normal skin, but if I got a tiny patch of dry, this made no difference to it. Then theres the fact that it gave me spots. Nothing too awful, but lots of tiny white heads. At first I thought it was just hormones, but I’ve been using this for about four weeks and have had the spots for the entire duration so I’m as sure as I can be that it was this product. The good points? I notice my skin is definitely plumper, smoother and my fine lines and wrinkles are without question looking less visible. So for me this was a no go, but if it doesn’t make you break out and you don’t suffer from dry skin this is an absolute winner of product, it makes bold claims and indeed the results bear this out. Well worth checking out if you don’t have fussy skin and want to start tackling some of those lines.

Then we have the Bio Active Eye Contour Complex (£75). This claims to give an instant lift to the eye area as well as depuffing. It also claims to diminish dark circles over time. In 4 weeks I don’t notice a difference to my dark circles, but they aren’t bad anyway so thats of no concern to me. What is of concern to me is the lifting effects. And boy is this stuff effective. I mean really really wow.
Here’s a before shot, it’s just an old one from my blog, but you can see lots of fine lines there.
Skin Science Moisturiser & Eye Cream
Skin Science Moisturiser & Eye Cream
I don’t know if you can see the difference? The after shot is a bit dark and isn’t straight on of course but I still think you can see where the lines aren’t. I’m very impressed indeed.
The long and short of it is that I really believe these products are miraculous if they suit your skin. Would I buy them? I would buy the Eye Contour Complex but it’s just too expensive for me, but it really is amazing!
Disclaimer – PR Samples

I’ve never tried anything from the Yes To brand and Yes To Cucumbers is the latest range to be added to the brand, which I was given the opportunity to try out. Accepting these PR samples was a slight error of judgment on my part actually since I cannot bear the smell the cucumber. I know thats a bit odd, I just don’t like the smell, never have, I don’t want my skin to smell like my toddlers all time favourite snack…

Anyway, I’m going to be professional and leave my thoughts on the smell of cucumber to one side and assume readers will have more sense than I when choosing products!

Yes To Cucumbers
I think most of us  know the cooling properties of cucumbers and it’s this that soothes and reduces redness and irritation. All of the products are 96% natural, paraben, petroleum and SLS free. The cucumber works in combination with Anti-oxidant rich Green Tea and moisiturising aloe vera.
I was sent the Daily Calming Moisturiser (£12.99). This moisturiser is light, definitely soothing and banishes my dry patches. I personally prefer a slightly heavier formula that offers SPF and anti aging properties, but this feels light, cool and soothing, as intended. I think this would be fab for younger skins and I’ll be passing my bottle on to my sister who suffers eczema as I think this might work a treat to calm her skin. It’s a lovely moisturiser, just not ideal for me.
The other product I was sent was the Soothing Eye Gel (£12.99). Well we all know about cucumber and eyes don’t we? Using slices of cucumbers to reduce puffyness is an age old tip passed through generations I believe. Now you don’t have to lie down with salad on your face! The Soothing Eye Gel is cooling and it does immediately reduce puffy eyes.  Again, this product is very nice and I’d recommend it for anyone who suffers with puffy, tired eyes, and younger folk. For me, as with the moisturiser, I like anti aging properties in my skin care but if I was 20 again (and I could bear the smell of cucumber) I think this range would be ideal.
Definitely a range to look at if you like natural products, that do what they say they will, without being blinded by science. Also in the range are facial wipes, a mask, a cleanser, shower gel, shampoo and conditioner.
Available via http://www.victoriahealth.com/.

This collection looks really beautiful. My funds have been cleared out so alas I won’t be partaking in this collection so I’ll be just tormenting myself by blogging about it regardless! There’s something about this collection that makes it ultra appealling to me, but I’ll get to that shortly….

Estee Lauder Wild VioletEstee Lauder Wild Violet
 One of the things that appeals to me about this collection is the striking contrast between the muted neutrals and purples with the bright corals and pinks of the lip products. The stand outs to me are the Wild Violet palette (£34) along with the Untamed Violet Double-wear Pencil (£15.50).  There are four Pure Color Lip Gelee’s (£16) and four Long Lasting Lipsticks (£17.50). I don’t know which colour names match up with the above image but I must say the first and the third really appeal.
The bit that strikes me most about this collection though, is the fact theres’s a fragrance to match the collection.  I recall reading months ago over at http://www.britishbeautyblogger.com/2010/12/estee-lauder-pure-color-wild-violet.html that there was an accompanying scent and I got all excited… then promptly forgot about it!  I just love the idea  of a fragrance to complement a make up collection.
Estee Lauder Wild Violet

Wild Elixir (£32) is a floral fragrance, drying down to a woody base.  I think the top notes are mandarin, violet leaves, and marigold amongst others, and the bottom notes are amberwood, musk and sandalwood (my all time favourite scent) amongst others. Sounds gorgeous!

The range is out now from Estee Lauder counters nationwide and http://www.esteelauder.co.uk/ as of now!

Alpha-H is a brand highly lauded by those in the know but I think fairly unknown by your average Joe. As part of the blogging community I found myself getting swept along with the hype I heard about this brand, in particular, the much loved Liquid Gold.

A month or two ago I was sent, unexpectedly, the following items:

Alpha-H Skincare

The Balancing Cleanser, Liquid Gold, the Liquid Gold Smoothing and Perfecting Mask and the Absolute Eye Complex.

To summarize some of these products didn’t meet the high expectations I had and some did but you’ll have to read on to find out more.

Let’s start by talking about the cleanser. The Balancing Cleanser with Aloe Vera claims to hydrate and cleanse without drying and it’s main ingredients of note are Aloe Vera and Vitamin E. 200ml retails for around the £20 mark. So its a great huge tube with a fairly huge price to match. It does a great job though I have to say. I can get into the shower fully made up and leave without a trace of mascara under my eyes. This is really something. I think I’ve yet to find a cleanser that doesn’t give me panda eyes when used in the shower.  Also, I tend not to favour cleansers that you use with water, as my skin always get red and tight after using water on it, but not so with this stuff. A winner of a cleanser and an absolute godsend if, like me, using an eye make up remover in addition to a cleanser seems like too much hard work. Great stuff.

Next up, Liquid Gold. Something of a cult product this is a very highly regarded potion. It promised great things, most notably to bridge the gap between the world of the scalpel and the cosmetics counter. It’s a water based rejuvenating treatment, instantly absorbed which allows it to work at a cellular level. With each application, dead skin is lifted away, along with excess sebum, grime and remnants of make up with the aim of leaving smaller refined pores, collagen production reinvigorated and fruit acids claim to kill the bacteria which cause spots.  The main ingredients are liquorice and silk. Liquorice to brighten, diminish age spots and uneven skin tone and silk to bind moisture to the skin whilst improving clarity texture and radiance with its amino acids and lipid oil. Sounds nothing short of miraculous and everything my tired skin could wish for. 100ml is £28.

So you apply this with a cotton wool pad every alternative night and leave on the skin all night. Which I have done religiously. Alas, perhaps my expectations were too high, but other than my skin feeling very soft, I noticed no other improvements. My pores are as large as ever, my skin as congested as ever and this product was no match at all for my hormonal spots. I wanted this to work for me so much and it just doesn’t. It really tingles when you put it on the first time by the way, but this fades quickly and doesn’t seem to happen with consecutive uses. I have friends who absolutely swear by this product so I am sure that this is just my crap skin to blame and not the product, but for me, it wasn’t great.

Next, the Liquid Gold Smoothing and Perfecting Mask. Wheat germ oil, rose oil, lavender oil, honey, macadamia seed oil and 15% glycolic acid. The aim is to eliminate dryness, absorb excess oil and it is supposed to be something of a soft peel. Designed to improve fine lines, wrinkles, pigmentation, sun damage, clogged pores, blemishes, eczema and generally tired skin. Well now we’re talking! This really rocks my world. You put it on for 10 minutes, oh boy does it tingle, it tested my limits I have to admit, although its not painful, its just, tingly, but you can FEEL it working. When I wash it off, my skin feels amazing. Soft, clean, nourished, and just fresh. I can’t describe it, this is a great product and does everything that I hoped the Liquid Gold would do. Unfortunately it’s not cheap, it’s £43 for 100ml. Trust me to fall for the most expensive item I was sent. It’s worth it though. I’ve been using it once a week but would love to up this to twice a week, if anyone knows if that’s allowed I’d love to know.

Finally the Absolute Eye Complex. An instant pick me up for eyes, reflecting light away from all your eye nasties (puffiness, fine lines etc). It also contains a range of botanicals to tighten and rehydrate.  To be used morning and night and £32 for 15mls this is another product I had high hopes for that didn’t meet my possibly over inflated expectations. I’m used to products actually showing signs that they are working, you can see some of my previous product reviews for the kind of thing I mean, fine lines disappearing, wrinkles diminishing, all easily seen in before and after photos… there are no photos this time as there were no results. It felt lovely to apply, cooling and refreshing, but I have other products that do that, if I spent £32 on something I want visible results and sadly I didn’t get any. Again, I have friends who swear by this product.

So you see, a mixed bag for me, I love the Liquid Gold Mask and Cleanser and whilst I don’t hate the Eye Complex or Liquid Gold, I certainly wouldn’t rush out to buy, but you know this brand’s reputation goes before it now and I’m one voice in a sea of many many lovers, and I feel certain I’m in the minority group. You need to check it out for yourself! Definitely definitely, if you want to do something fab for your skin, treat yourself to the mask. It is a thing of wonder!

Any Alpha-H products I ought to try? Have you tried the above and loved them? Tell me all about it!