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!
It is a fact that if you take most things and make them mini they become extra cute. Baby animals for example. And now the Foreo Luna. I’ve blogged about two of the Foreo Luna models previously and you can find my post on the original Foreo Luna here and the Foreo Luna Mini 2 here.
If you’ve read those previous reviews you’ll know that I’m a huge fan of these Foreo sonic cleansers. Hygienic, effective, gentle and generally just all round brilliant these silicone face cleansing tools are used daily by me so I’m delighted to add a new model to my arsenal, the Foreo Luna Play.
Given it’s size, its a little less comfortable to hold I find, but in terms of effectiveness, it cleanses just as well as the larger models.
You may well be thinking that if it’s not rechargeable its a bit useless, but it’s really not. This is an ideal bit of kit for travelling, or if you are cautious about shelling out for a larger model. The Play retails at £29, while the Mini 2 is £99 and the full size Luna is £149 making the Foreo Luna Play ideal for testing the water before investing in the rechargeable models. Plus it’s super cute and available in 7 cute colours!
If you’re yet to try a sonic facial cleansing brush, this is an ideal product to try, it’s more hygienic than nylon bristles, gentler on the skin and more effective at cleansing. Highly recommended!
The Foreo Luna Play retails at £29 and is available from Foreo Online.
*Product received free of charge for review purposes.
While I have no doubt that there are new brands cropping up all over the time, its not too often I get to try them out. Elemental Herbology are not actually a new brand, having been established in 2008, but they are new to me. The brand’s area of expertise is using therapeutic levels of plant compounds, herbal extracts, botanical oils, vitamins, minerals, essential oils to create natural skin and body care products that really work. The entire range is based upon the Five Element Theory from traditional Chinese medicine and each product relates to each element, wood, fire, earth, metal and water and Elemental Herbology believe that a balance of all the elements is needed depending on your skin type. With my skin being all over the shop, this concept is one that really appeals to me.
I’ve been trying out three products recently and I’ll start by telling you about the Facial Souffle Overnight Cream from the Moisture Replenish line.
The product having the word Souffle in its name is very definitely appealing to me! And this beautiful Facial Souffle doesn’t disappoint. Usually with products that promise a lot of hydration I have concerns that they will break me out, but so far so good with this overnight treat. Designed for mature or dry skin (I am both) this overnight cream really moisturises and suits my sensitive skin really well. I wake up with my skin soft and comfortable. It is not a cheap product at £47, but a little goes a long way and I have no doubt this will last quite some time. Do have a look at the reviews on the website, they are really brilliant.
Next up is the Facial Detox Purifying Facial Mask.
This is a product my chin and nose has been crying out for. My skin is cursed with blemishes, even at the grand age of 41, but what I really struggle with is that the spots are in combination with dry skin and sensitive skin. Often products designed for spots, are far too harsh or drying for me. This beautiful mask is made with Honey, Aloe and Calendula to soothe, Oat Flour and Allantoin to exfoliate gently and Clay to help eliminate the toxins. Its the combination of these, that mean this is helpful for my skin and it allows me to use it all over (instead of just the problem areas) without risking aggravating my dryness. It smells amazing (eucalyptus, cedarwood, lavender and rosemary) and is a pleasure to use. I have some congestion and I have found it helps to bring the bumps out. While it is suitable for my fussy face, if you have more tolerant skin you might find it a bit too gentle for you. For me this is a must have product, but at £38 for 75ml, you’ll want to be sure it suits your skin.
Finally I’ve been trying out Hand Nutrition Intensive Hand and Nail Repair Cream.
I’m a bit of a horror when it comes to hand creams, I have them, I have them everywhere, on my desk, on my bedside table, in my handbag, but I always forget to use them. I don’t get terribly dry hands so I guess that has something to do with why I’m so bad, but I have forced myself to give this a good go and I’m pleased I have. Hand Nutrition is for dry and sun-damaged hands and is rich in Omegas 3, 6 and 9. It smells nice and seems to moisturise well. Since I’ve been crocheting up a storm I do tend to notice when I have dry patches as they snag on my yarn, and in addition, its also important that when I do use a hand cream it absorbs quickly so I can carry on with my work. This cream isn’t the fastest to absorb I’ve ever tried, but it doesn’t take ages either, and it doesn’t leave a residue if I rub it in properly. It stops any snaggy bits of dryness there and then. What more could you ask for? This one is £16.
I’ve been really impressed with the Elemental Herbology products I’ve tried, and keen to explore the range further and see if I can find a routine that would suit my skin for once and for all, my only hesitation with that is the prices are a little higher than I’d like, but for the right products, I’d pay whatever was necessary within reason!
Oh and final comment, I love the beautiful, simple packaging. Its very attractive.
Please do take a look at the Elemental Herbology to see the full range of products and for more information.
*All items received free of charge for review purposes
Delighted to be reviewing the Foreo Luna mini 2 today on the blog. If you’ve been a reader for a long time, you may recall I actually reviewed the full size Foreo Luna quite some time ago. I loved it and actually still use it, although I’ve lapsed slightly and tend not to use it every day. No reason for that, just that I’m terribly slack.
So since the Foreo Luna was launched in the UK the range has expanded (hello toothbrush!!) but today we’re looking at, as I say, the Foreo Luna mini 2.
The Mini 2 is a hand held device for facial cleansing. It’s made from silicone which cleanses gently, but thoroughly, while being really hygienic as you can clean the device easily.
As well as the Mini, you also get a USB charger and a little instruction booklet. Otherwise that’s it, but what more could you want?!
The mini has eight intensities so you can find the perfect setting for you while the “bristles” are optimised for all skin types. Once you set your intensity, the Luna mini remembers that, so it’ll be still set to the same next time you turn it on.
To use it, dampen your face, apply your cleanser, then turn on your mini and apply all over your face for a minute. As you move around your face the light will flash telling you to move onto the next area of your face, it really couldn’t be simpler. I’d like to go on a rant about this is superior to famous “brush” cleaning systems but I’ll exercise some decorum and just say, it is. Not only is the device more hygienic, but it’s gentler while cleansing extremely thoroughly, you’ll never need to buy a replacement brush and they are incredibly energy efficient (300 uses approximately per charge!).
In terms of difference between this and the full size Luna, the mini doesn’t have the anti ageing side and the bristles differ in layout slight, it is smaller of course (but for my small hands thats a good thing). The full sized Luna comes in various models for different skin types, while the Mini just has one standard model, which is suitable for all.
The Mini bristles have several zones, the general cleansing area at the front, with a precision cleansing zone on the tip for getting around the nose and smaller areas, the bristles on the rear of the device are for deep cleansing, so if oily or spotty areas, use the rear of the device on those.
I think I’ve run through everything you need to know, but the long and the short of it is that I think the Foreo sonic cleansers are the best you can buy, I can’t say a bad thing about them, genuinely. You can use your usual cleansers (I’m currently loving Mac Lightful Cleanser and it works with this beautifully), and what’s more because it’s so hygienic, your whole family can use the same one…not that there’s any chance I’m sharing mine with anyone!
At £99 it is definitely an investment, but they last for years and as I say, you won’t need to purchase replacement parts.
You can purchase on the Foreo Site, as well as find more information.
*Foreo Luna mini 2 provided free of charge for review purposes.
Hello! I’m back from our week in Cornwall, which was, in truth, up and down but I think I’ll save that for another family post as no doubt it’ll be a bit of a depressing ramble.
Today we’ll stick with happy, lovely beauty products and I’m delighted to share with you some new products from Balance Me.
Meet the Balance Me Restore and Replenish Collagen Boost Cream Cleanser and Face Cream*.
As I’ve explained in recent skincare posts, this isn’t so much a review as I’m too scared to chop and change products at the moment, but more of a look at this new launch here post.
So, the Restore and Replenish products have been two years in the making, thanks to the science-led peptide complex to protect, and maintain skin cells healthy, youthful structure. This complex contains Tri-Peptide to support and stabilise the collagen helix, Pea Peptide that contains 22 amino acids, making this a concentrated source of nutrients, Hyaluronic Acid for immediate skin plumping and Blackberry Leaf Extract, a powerful anti-oxidant. Combined, these ingredients promise to increase collagen synthesis, as well as protect the skins structure while plumping and smoothing the skins surface.
The Restore and Replenish Cream Cleanser (£18/125ml) is designed to remove all traces of make up, without causing dryness or irritation. And it sure does, not a scrap was left on my face when I tried this out. Suitable for all skin types, this leaves skin clean and refreshed. It also smells beautiful.
The Restore and Replenish Face Cream (£40/50ml) is beautiful. As with the Cream Cleanser, the smell is gorgeous. It hydrates my dry skin very well, without causing blemishes, and my skin feels smooth to the touch. Its really lovely.
As I say, I am not doing a full review of these products as I am sticking with my usual skincare line for the time being until my face is back on an even keel, but if you are in the market for new skincare and you are looking for anti-ageing products suitable for sensitive skin, as well as an emphasis on natural ingredients, look no further. Despite my limited trial of these products I would not hesitate to recommend. Balance Me have never let me down!
Available from Balance Me online.
*Products received free of charge for review purposes.
If ever there was a product that made huge promises with just it’s name alone, Balance Me Facial Expression Filler* is it. I had visions of looking botoxed and fillered to the max with this product, but no, its not that much of a miracle, I’m not sure such a product even exists in terms of skincare, but for £22 this little tube does have some great effects on my skin.
I love the Balance Me brand, they use great ingredients and this serum contains rose, frankincense and bergamot which smell beautiful of course but are all useful ingredients too. But then there’s acacia gum to firm, lift and refine the surface of the skin and acmella oleracea extract which soothes and relaxes contracted muscles. And added into that potent mix the current must have ingredient, Hyraluronic Acid to plump and smooth the skin. You’re looking at a winning formula.
To use, you just need a tiny amount of product, patted directly onto any lines you wish to diminish, so forehead, around the eyes, sides of the mouth and so on before applying make up.
I felt the product was slightly mis-named. I was sort of expecting a product that literally filled lines, to provide a flawless base for make up, and that is not what this is. This is a nourishing, effective, daily use serum that plumps and nourishes the skin so that fine lines are diminished. And for that purpose it really works very well indeed. I noticed lines were less obvious, particularly around my eyes, from the very first use. I am not sure if the effects are cumulative, or if they are wash off at the end of the day, but I think I’m seeing an improvement in my lines even at the end of the day when I’ve washed my face. They’ve not gone, but they are certainly less visible.
So, Balance Me Facial Express Filler, if you’re of a certain age, and those lines are starting to make a nuisance of themselves, I think you should definitely add this little product to your arsenal. I’m really impressed and think this might just be the product I can’t bear to be without!
Available from the Balance Me Website at £22 for 15ml.
*Product received free of charge for review purposes.
I’m afraid this is something of a luxury product at £59 for 50ml, but it’s incredibly effective and an ideal product for skin requiring some tlc. It’s easy to use, you simply apply to the skin in the same way as any face mask and leave, overnight for best results but if you are strapped for time at least two hours will do. Ingredients include rose, frankincense as well as other potent botanical extracts. Strawberry seed extract feeds your skin rich fatty acids, while rice germ and millet seed oils nourish and protect against environmental damage.
As you might expect the smell is beautiful, everything Aromatherapy Associates make smells beautiful, but the effects on the skin are clear. I find when I wake up in the morning, my skin feels refreshed, healthy and glowy. Makes a very pleasant change to waking up dull, grey and tired looking. Although suitable for all skin types, I think this really excels with dry skins, its made a big difference to my dry patches.
I can highly recommend this product however, I am not thrilled about the price. I have loved every single Aromatherapy Associates product I have ever tried, and I have tried many, but the price point is high. I don’t doubt the quality at all, it is exceptional, but £59 for this small 50ml tube is far too excessive for me, this is a product I would like to use regularly, as the benefits for me are great, but I really couldn’t afford to. I think you could take £20 off the price and it’d still be an expensive product.
Oh but it is beautiful, it truly is, and it really has a great effect on my skin, so yes, I do recommend it, but I would recommend searching around, various retailers stock this product, at slightly cheaper prices.
You can purchase directly from Aromatherapy Associates for £59
But Beauty Bay are currently selling it for £42.40, which is a saving not to be sniffed at.
*Product received free of charge for review purposes.
Dull, dehydrated and prone to redness…. well add in some acne and you’ve got my skin type right there in a nutshell. I think however, I’ve found the answer in the Balance Me Radiance Face Oil*.
Ingredients include Sweet Almond oil, grape seed oil, kukui nut oil, rosehip oil, buriti oil, moringa oil, camelia oil and jojoba oil as well as Vitamin E, chamomile, benzoin, yarrow and rosemary amongst other nice things all artfully combined to create a beautiful face oil to return some glow to the complexion as well as even tone.
To use you apply two drops (from the handy pipette) and apply either alone or under moisturiser. I’ve been opting for alone in the morning, and under my usual moisturiser at night. The smell of this is absolutely beautiful, it feels like an absolute treat to use.
Despite being an oil, its not greasy, and its a great product for all skins because of its balancing properties. Dry flakes are banished and I’m finding blemishes are soothed more quickly, thanks to the oil’s redness reducing properties!
A winner of a product.
£30 for a 30ml glass bottle, available from Balance Me Online.
*Product received free of charge for review purposes.
Gotta love a decent moisturiser! The weather is cold (and drying), central heating is drying and in the winter months our skin can really suffer. As we get older too, our skin can change and need a heavier dose of moisture and that’s certainly been the case for me. This winter, age 40, has been the first winter I’ve seen a real change in my skin. It was dry to the point of flaking off particularly on my cheeks. I’ve always suffered a bit of dryness on my nose that has always made applying foundation tricky but this year its spread out onto my cheeks and even my chin to a lesser degree and my usual moisturiser just didn’t cut it.
I recently blogged about the Aveda moisturiser I use and really love, but when I was sent the Balance Me Moisture-Rich Face Cream* to try out I thought I’d give it a go.
Balance Me’s whole ethos is one of using naturally active botanicals along with hi-tech natural formulations and pure grade essential oils to offer skin that works well as well as offering additional aromatherapy benefits.
This moisturiser is aimed at minimising signs of ageing in dry, sensitive and mature skin. Well that’s me then. *weep* It works to add a protective layer to shield the skin from daily wear and tear using Arctic Cloudberry to offer powerful anti-oxidants along with organic shea butter, camelia, rosehip and kukui nut oils to moisturise while offering vitamins, lipids and fatty acids.
It smells beautiful and feels really luxurious whilst managing to avoid any greasy feel on the skin although I can still feel something on my skin when I’ve finished applying. The lovely pump bottle dispenses just the right amount and I was pleasantly surprised at how little I needed.
Given that I’m already happy with my routine, and given the slight amount of product left on my skin once applied (it’s not greasy, so much as ever so slightly tacky), I’ve slotted this into my night time routine. In part down to the dryness, and in part just because of how my skin is, I can get some redness around my nose and I find using this at night means that redness is less obvious when I wake in the mornings.
Would definitely recommend this but depends on your skin and your routines as to whether I’d recommend it as a day cream, a night cream or both. I haven’t tried it under make up but as my skin and make up are fussy at the best of times I’m avoiding using it underneath cosmetics.
Balance Me Daily Essentials Moisture-Rich Face Cream is £24 for 50ml (as shown) and there are two smaller sizes available, 10ml for £6 and 25ml for £15.
*Product received free of charge for review purposes.
As I was lying in bed last night thinking about my hair colour, I thought back to my first attempts at colouring my hair. I used to go to the local chemist and pick up sachet’s of Wella’s Shaders and Toners. Which got me started thinking about all the other products I used religiously in the past too. Many of which I wasn’t able to find photographs of, but I’d love to know if you remember them too, or for you to add your own memories in the comments! I can’t always remember which decade products belong to either, it’s all a bit of a haze.
I used to love these! Shaders and Toners were amazing. I always went for red shades, and they claimed to last up to three washes. I can remember examining my hair in sunlight and seeing a faint red glow and being well pleased with the results!
Sticking with the hair theme, it wasn’t long before I discovered Sun In.
Hairdressers throw your hands up in horror! I actually used this several times over the years and actually I think the results weren’t at all bad. I’ll have to dig out a photo at some point but there’s no denying it’s straw making effects on my hair.
St Ives Shampoo’s and Conditioners. I think you can still get these, but I used to buy mine in Superdrug and I remember a Keratin formula and a Vanilla Flavour but they made my hair so so nice.
And quick mention must be given to the Banana Clip. God they were great, if a little frustrating thanks to the fact I have so much hair it was always a bit of a struggle to get the damn things done up. I miss banana clips.
Perfume. There are so many I recall but this one really sticks with me.
Colors de Benetton Woman. Mine was in a hexagonal shaped box I think, but it was possibly my first perfume, in a bottle, that I wore every last drop of. Many came after it (see my library of fragrance post) but this was the first one I ever owned, following years of liberal Impulse spraying.
The Avon years. A school friends mum was an Avon Lady, I can’t even remember who it was, but I probably have them to thank for my love of make up now.
I remember she had her mum’s tester kit and I had several of these gorgeous little testers off her. I’d absolutely LOVE to own this now. I ended up owning several things. Of course the sky blue liner, the electric blue mascara and one thing I remember with special fondness. It was a cardboard tube housing a powder puff and the most beautiful pink shimmer powder. I put it everywhere I loved that stuff. I would love to see it now but alas none of my google searches have been successful. It was also Avon (I think) who introduced me to face masks, I particularly remember the whole family trying out a lemon peel off one. It was revolutionary and I can smell it now!
There were other skincare products I swore by First of all the Aapri Dual Cleansing Pads. I know many will recall the Aapri scrubs, but this was a whole other kettle of fish, basically a scourer for your skin that was soaked in a foaming solution. You ran your pad under the tap and then scoured your face, actually, I think they still exist, or a version of them does.
I also, in the early 90’s relied heavily on a 3 in 1 cleansing foam, I can’t recall its name or brand, but it was a foam that did the job of cleansing, toning and moisturising in one go. It was also the done thing for everyone to own The Body Shop Elderflower Eye Gel.
I also went through a long period of using extremely heavy duty toner type cleansers, such as Clean & Clear. The cotton pads always ended up black. You make mock these prehistoric products, but my skin is far worse now than it ever was when I was in my late teens/early twenties.
The Body Shop deserves its own paragraph, who can forget Banana Shampoo & Conditioner, Ice Blue Shampoo, Raspberry Ripple Body Wash, Dewberry fragrance oil and White Musk and Japanese Cleansing Grains (I think they were called). Some of these have been re-released since but it’s not the same. And It’ll be too soon if I ever smell Dewberry again, I didn’t even like that one at the time.
Roll on Glitter.
I used to wear this stuff, on nights out. Nuff said.
Lip products. Aged around 10, so 30 years ago, I remember my friend getting Boots 17 Twilight Teaser Lipstick.
I’m looking at it and I’m feeling it’s magical pull. I still want this lipstick. No one can pull it off (although its far more mauve than this picture would have you believe). I still want to try. When I eventually did start wearing make up I started with more Boos 17, I remember a shade called Toffee Apple. I lived in that. Actually looking back now, it’s browny-red hue was the definition of a 90’s lipstick and as you probably know it’s a big trend for this year. I’ll be looking for something similar I think. Oh and then there were the famous Rimmel Coffee and Heather Shimmer lipsticks, everyone had either one or both. Not terribly flattering on most of us, but like we cared.
That right there is Heather Shimmer, but both shades are still available.
Finally in make up, there were lip glosses, more specifically roll on lip glosses. I can taste and feel my cola flavour one now. I think I got it in a chemist with my pocket money, and I was very young. I loved it though, I’m sure I owned more!
Finally, I just want to pay my respects to a product that I didn’t actually own but that I remember my Granny owning.
Still available today, Boots Smiths Cremolia is a product thats been around a long long time. I recall my Granny always having it in the house but I’m not sure that she did, but somehow it made a great impression. I can recall the smell and it’s strange gloopy gel/serum texture and I think I might go and pick up a pot, if its been around for over 50 years, that probably means its good!
So tell me, do you remember any of these things and what do you remember that I haven’t mentioned?!