Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Nourish Radiance Phyto-Active Body Cream

I've got a whole lot of love for Nourish already and their latest offering has given me even more reason to adore the natural British brand. Nourish have recently launched a range of indulgent body creams to protect and enhance the skin from top to toe.
The collection includes four different creams, each with unique ingredients to target various skin woes and get your epidermal mojo back after winter.

Radiance Phyto-Active Body Cream
Containing Tonka Bean extract, this cream is for you if you're feeling a bit dull. Featuring Shea butter, Argan oil, Vitamin E, Omega oils and Rose Absolute, the Phyto-Active Body Cream is formulated to bring back the glow - in other words, tone and brighten the skin. 85% organic.

This is the cream that I've been trying out and I am LOVING IT. For a product that's so jam packed with oils and butters, it really does feel incredibly light on the skin and leaves a very subtle 'glow' that's down to the addition of the Tonka Bean extract, which is naturally light responsive.
The cream absorbs incredibly well too - I can put this on my legs straight after a shower and safely pop my jeans on almost straight away, with no greasy feeling.
The scent of the Radiance Phyto-Activ Body Cream is a subtle 'true rose' fragrance which is wonderfully delicate and actually smells like proper roses.
Overall, this is brilliant moisturiser that sinks in and leaves skin feeling soft but not as if it's loaded with product. Absolutely perfect for this time of year.
Here's a little bit about the 3 other creams in the range:

Protect Nutri-Rich Body Cream
Vitamin C and antioxidant rich with a dose of Hyaluronic acid, this cream is designed to stimulate collagen production and hydrate. Mandarin, orange oil and rosehip oil combine to increase tissue regeneration, refresh and tone dry skin. 85% organic.

Relax Cell-Protect Body Cream
90% organic, this relaxing cream is infused with calming lavender oil and features a shea butter base with Borage oil, Vitamin E and Omega 6 to repair, regenerate and prevent collagen depletion. If you have super sensitive skin, this is the one to pick.

Balance Vita-Boost Body Cream
This anti-inflammatory protective cream is touted as an anti-cellulite cream that contains B3 and 'Tri-peptide 5' to aid in the metabolism of fat. This cream features soothing aloe vera and detoxifying sesame oil to reduce sign of aging and is complete with exclusive Apple Water extracts that exfoliate and leaved the skin smelling fresh and appl-ish. 87% organic.

The Nourish Body Creams retail at a reasonable £14 for 100ml and are available from Nourish, Feel Unique and Debenhams.

Friday, 24 April 2015

[Closed] Win a £25 Space NK Giftcard

It's no secret that Space NK is one of my absolute favourite beauty destinations and if you're a fan too, you may want to enter this little sweepstakes to win a £25 Giftcard!
I feel like there might be a pretty good gift with purchase coming up soon and if their summer sale is as amazing as it was last year, you'll want an extra £25 at your disposal.
It's super easy to enter via the rafflecopter below. I will cross my fingers for you, good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*One winner will receive a £25 Giftcard from Space NK
  Open to UK residents only

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

The Balm Shady Lady in Racy Kacy - A Perfect Shadow for Blue Eyes?

Oh I do love a good rhyme and The Balm have certainly delivered in that department with Shady Lady Powder Eye Shadow in Racy Kacy.
Know what I love even more than a good rhyme? A great eyeshadow shade to make my blue peepers that little bit more blue.

I'll admit, I'm more of a slave to skincare than I am a makeup maestro (I like alliteration too) and to be honest I'm not exceptionally good at actually putting makeup on. I don't have the steadiest of hands and I'm fairly artistically challenged which is one reason why I appreciate wearable, richly pigmented eyeshadows that look great just as they are and make an instant impact.

Racy Kacy is a rich coppery shade with a shot of shimmer that does a very good job at bringing forth the blue in my eyes. As with all the Shady Lady shadows, it can be worn as a liner and a shadow and may be applied with a wet brush for a more intense look.

I just used a dry brush on the lids and a sponge tipped applicator on the lower lid to line my eyes a little bit here.

The texture of Shady Lady is quite soft and smooth and the packaging is quite good fun - who wouldn't want an eyeshadow packaged in leopard print? I like that the shadow features a magnetised lid and built in mirror too but one downside I found is that it creased after a couple of hours, though my eyelids would crease titanium, given the chance.

I really like this shadow and it's reminded me that reddish copper tones are a bit more fun than blacks and browns. Shady Lady Powder Eye Shadow in Racy Kacy is available at loads of online retailers but I got mine from Feel Unique.
Have you tried any of the Shady Lady eyeshadows from The Balm?

Monday, 20 April 2015

BareMinerals Complexion Rescue - Colour Match at Selfridges

When your boyfriend announces that your makeup looks 'really natural' and 'has a nice glow actually' you know that you're onto a good thing. Especially when said boyfriend is one of the most bluntly honest people on the planet. That's what happened last weekend when we visited Selfridges so I could try out BareMinerals' latest offering, Complexion Rescue.

bareminerals complexion bar selfridges

A few different shades were tried out before it was agreed that no. 3 (Buttercream) was my match and it was blended seamlessly onto my skin while the very helpful sales assistant filled me in on what exactly makes Complexion Rescue so special. Essentially a BB, CC and Tinted Moisturiser in one (!) Complexion Rescue features a composition with pigment on the inside and water on the outside. 'Traditional' tinted moisturisers have pigment on the 'outside' and water on the 'inside'.
This sounds a little bit odd and confusing but basically, the way that Complexion Rescue is formulated means the water in the formula reaches your skin first, before the colour, giving it an instant hit of hydration. This is explained in more detail here.
complexion rescue makeup application selfridges

Bareminerals complexion bar selfridges

Whatever the science behind it, I can declare that this stuff delivers. The finish is dewy, fresh and above all very natural. It's quite sheer so if you have freckles and you aint afraid to show them, this is the Spring base for you. If you have a little redness or minor blemishes that you'd like corrected or just want your complexion to look more even, you need to give it a go. If however you're after a heavier base, this won't cut the mustard, though I was told that Complexion Rescue can absolutely be worn under foundation for additional coverage and a dose of hydration.

Complexion Rescue has an RRP of £26 though I have found it on Look Fantastic where it is available for pre-order (released on April 22nd) for £20.50. I'm going to be creating a look using the Complexion Rescue sometime soon so keep an eye out for that!
What's your favourite BareMinerals product?
Images: Rich Godden

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Nude Skincare Natural Radiance Set - a Perfect Introduction to the Nude Brand

I don't know an awful lot about Nude as a brand but have read so many glowing reviews about the products that I thought it was about time I stopped being so rude and finally introduced myself. Sets are always a great way to get acquainted with a beauty brand and the Nude Skincare Natural Radiance Set is the perfect introduction to some of the well loved products.

Inside the set you'll find a generous helping (15ml) of the Perfect Cleansing Oil, a bottle of Radiant Day Moisturiser (also 15ml) and a little dropper bottle of one of the nude's newest creations - ProGenius Treatment Oil (10ml).

I got this set last week and have tried each of the products a couple of times now and can report that all three are simply lovely to use.

Perfect Cleansing Oil
nude skincare cleansing oil review

This is a cleansing oil (obvs) that turns into a 'milk' when mixed with water. I use one or two pumps in my palms and then massage over my face before removing with a warm damp flannel. It annihilates makeup so works well as a first cleanse but then again it feels so luxurious you'll be tempted to use it as your second cleanse. The cleansing oil contains Omega 6 and 9 which are anti-inflammatory fatty acids, Meadowfoam Oil - a mild, easily absorbed oil that rehydrates and balances and Jojoba Oil which is a fantastically hydrating all rounder. 

Radiant Day Moisturiser
nude skincare radiant day moisturiser

With a pleasing, mild scent, the Radiant Day Moisturiser delivers a hefty dose of hydration in a surprisingly light formula. Like the Cleansing Oil, it contains a good ol' dose of Omega 6 and is enriched with Probiotics (to 'stabilize' flora on the surface of the skin - in the same way they work to neutralize gut flora), Zinc, Magnesium, Copper, Mango Seed Butter (rich in fatty acids) and Hyaluronic Acid.

ProGenius Omega Treatment Oil
Nude Skincare ProGenius Omega Treatment Oil
Nude ProGenius Omega Treatment Oil Review

This was the addition to the set that made me want it the most. This dinky little bottle is brimming with 10 different oils that contain Omega 3, 6, 7 and 9 and is quickly absorbed to deliver hydration for 24 hours. I'm not going to pretend I completely understand all this 'Omega' talk so I did a little research to find out the benefits of each. Here's a little breakdown:

Omega 3: An essential fatty acid that can reduce redness and improves the elasticity of the skin.
Omega 6: Counteracts dehydration and boosts moisture levels in the skin.
Omega 7: Aids in increasing resilience of the skin, enhances skin tone and texture and restores suppleness.
Omega 9: Intensely nourishes, provides environmental protection.

I've only used this oil in the evening as it is quite 'oily' (ha!) though I think I'm a little overzealous with it and probably apply a little too much. It feels very, very nourishing and I can almost hear my skin singing a little happy song when I put it on. It's worth noting that it smells great too - very natural and not overpowering by any means.

If you're interested in finding out what all the fuss is about with Nude Skincare, I think this kit is a great little intro. It's £38 from Space NK which is very good value considering a 30ml bottle of the ProGenius Oil will set you back £58 and this way you get to try out the Cleansing Oil and Moisturiser too. If you're tempted, get in quick because the Try Something New campaign at Space NK ends at 8pm tonight (19th April). The campaign involves receiving £10 off when you spend £40 online so you could add this kit and another treat to your basket to get the deal.
Have you tried Nude Skincare?

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Soap and Glory Beauty Sleep Accelerator - a Night Time Revelation

Let's be frank here. I've become a bit of a skincare snob. I don't know how it happened but I always gravitate towards the slightly pricier options found in the likes of Space NK and Selfridges rather than among the three for two's in Boots. It came as a surprise then when I found myself falling for Soap and Glory Beauty Sleep Accelerator Night and Flight Moisture Miracle (try saying that quickly, I dare you.).
I've already briefly talked about this moisturiser in the Glow Getters post but wanted to go into a bit more depth since I've been getting so much use out of it. 

soap and glory night cream

First of all, I quite like the packaging - the jar is very simple in design and doesn't look overly kitschy or girly, which is a world away from a lot of other S and G products. It's what's inside that counts though right? Right! This cream includes cactus flower, rose hip oil and sweet almond oil on the ingredients list as well as some trademarked additions including 'Peach and GoJuice' which is essentially peach and goji berry extracts that are rich in vitamin A and C and antioxidants, 'Highdration 24H' and 'Oxyginseng' technology.
soap and glory night and flight cream

soap and glory night and flight cream review

I'm not huge on these mysterious trademarked ingredients because I like to have some idea of what I'm putting on my face so I checked out the Soap and Glory website and  found that there is a full ingredients list that seems to explain what these fancy pants additions actually mean. So in addition to the peach and goji berry extracts, cactus flower, rose hip and sweet almond oils, there's also orange peel oil, ginseng extract, beeswax, glycerin (which is the second main ingredient after water) and hyaluronic acid which we all know is super plumping and hydrating.

On application, the cream isn't overly thick and absorbs quite quickly, resulting in an instant hydration fix. The scent? This stuff smells so, so good. It has quite a refreshing fruity scent that smells almost good enough to eat.
The top reason I'm loving the Soap and Glory Beauty Sleep Accelerator is down to the way it makes my skin look and feel. I apply it over whatever serum or oil I'm using and wake up with a sort of dewy, fresh complexion without any oil slick factor.
I've only tried it as a night treatment but imagine it would be a great in-flight companion to perk you up during your journey and freshen your face before landing.
The cream will set you back a very reasonable £13 at Boots and in my opinion it's up there with some of my favourite high end skin treats. Have you tried any skincare by Soap and Glory?

Monday, 13 April 2015

Urban Decay Naked Skin Bronzing Beauty Balm Review

Spring seems to have arrived on time this year so I've got my mind firmly on bronzing beauty products. I do occasionally use fake tan on my face but I'm such an acid exfoliator fanatic that it's almost pointless applying something designed to last a few days when it's just going to come off the next time I exfoliate. That's where Urban Decay Naked Skin Bronzing Beauty Balm comes in - I can just slap this on and my face matches my neck in no time. The bronzing BB is a fairly recent addition to my beauty arsenal but I can definitely see myself getting a lot of use of it in the coming months, provided the weather behaves itself.
image of urban decay bronzing beauty balm

Encased in a squeezable bronze tube, the Beauty Balm behaves like any other BB really and provides a sheer finish with a wash of bronze tint that is buildable. That said, I find that just one application does the trick and anything more than that can look a little on the orange side and as the kids say, aint nobody got time for that.

The Bronzing Beauty Balm contains watermelon extract which is said to protect the skin and 'high tech' ingredients Vitasource and dGlyage that are designed to firm and improve elasticity.
The balm has a 'menthol' type cooling sensation when applied, which is a nice touch since it's most likely to be used when it's hot outside.

The balm can be used instead of or on top of moisturiser - I prefer the latter as I find it gives a dewier finish when applied after moisturiser, but if your skin is oily I'd say you could use it instead of moisturiser and achieve a nice finish.
In terms of staying power, the balm seems to actually last really well, which I wasn't expecting for some reason.
before and after picture of bronzing beauty balm
Left Side - Urban Decay Bronzing Beauty Balm. Right Side - nothing!

All in all, I really like this product and the fact that it's on special at Beauty Bay for £16.45 instead of £23.50 makes it even more appealing! If you're a fake tanner or just want to add a bit of a summery glow to your complexion, pick up a tube of Urban Decay Naked Skin Bronzing Beauty Balm for sure.

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Body Shop Premium Strawberry Selection

The classic Body Shop scents remind me soooo much of my late teens/ early twenties (I was a compulsive vanilla oil wearer) so this gorgeous Premium Strawberry Selection is total nostalgia overload for me!
image of body shop strawberry gift set

I am a long time fan (I'm talking like 15 years here!) of the strawberry body scrub so was so happy to discover it was included in the gift set alongside the eau de toilette, body butter, lip butter and mini bath lily (pouffe). 
I love layering gift sets like this that mean you can have a full on pamper session and scrub, smother then spritz yourself in the same scrumptious scent.
The Premium Strawberry Selection is presented in a durable red box with ribbon so is a ready made gift really and even though it is from the Body Shop Christmas collection of gift sets, it's not too festive looking so will do the trick as a birthday/anniversary/just because gift!

image of strawberry body butter from the body shop

image of strawberry body polish from the body shop

image of the body shop strawberry perfume

image of the body shop strawberry lip butter

The Premium Strawberry Selection is £28  for 5 products so not bad in value at all. If strawberry isn't your cup of tea, there are sets in other scents too including coconut, Wild Argan and moringa so you'll find a ready made gift to suit the recipients taste or satisfy your own, obviously.
It's available from the Body Shop, but you probably guessed that already ;)

Post contains sample

Friday, 10 April 2015

Kahina Giving Beauty Prickly Pear Seed Oil

Did you know prickly pear seed oil is really quite good for your skin? Well that's one thing we have in common because neither did I. In fact, I didn't know prickly pear was much good for anything other than growing in deserts and being exceptionally prickly.
prickly pear seed oil

Do not underestimate the power of the mighty cactus.
As it turns out, the seeds of these spiny plants are high in amino acids, Vitamin K, fatty acids and antioxidants - in other words, a whole load of good things that just so happen to be great for skin.
Amino acids smooth and tone the complexion, Vitamin K has been proven to lighten dark under eye circles and spider veins, fatty acids improve moisture levels in the skin and antioxidants aid in reducing wrinkles. The impressive part is all of these benefits exist within just one ingredient - Prickly Pear Seed Oil.

I have been trialling the 100% organic Kahina Giving Beauty Prickly Pear Seed Oil for just over a week now, which in fairness is probably not quite long enough, but I just got so overexcited by this product that I sort of couldn't wait. After cleansing and toning in the evening, I've been smoothing 2 or 3 drops of the oil onto my face before applying my night cream and I've got to say I'm a little bit in love with it. The oil is 'thicker' than argan oil and has an odd yet not unpleasant 'hay' scent. It absorbs quite nicely and leaves me with a glow rather than the shine you might expect from an oil.

The Kahina Giving Beauty Prickly Pear Seed Oil is touted as an anti-aging treatment to soften, moisturise, restore elasticity, brighten undereye circles and minimize spider veins. The main benefits I've gained from its use (so far-early days) is definitely a noticeably softer feeling face and reduction in under eye darkness. I've read a few reviews that comment on how effective the oil is in reducing under eye circles, so if this something that you struggle with I definitely recommend you give the Prickly Pear Seed Oil a go.

If you've not heard of Kahina Giving Beauty before, the company have a wonderful ethos that you can read all about here and keep an eye out for the oil when it launches at the end of the month at for around £25.

This post contains a sample

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

DHC Face Wash Powder

Powder face washes seem to be having quite a moment don't they? I first got a taste (not literally, ugh) of the whole powder/exfoliating/cleansing combo in the form of Givenchy Hydra Sparkling One Minute Glow Powder in the #BBB Latest in Beauty Givenchy Box a couple of months back and was totally blown away/ sucked in by the rather simple concept of mixing powder with water. My second foray into this mysterious powdery realm was in the form of Indeed Labs Facial Powdered Exfoliator, which you can read about in a previous post and now I'm getting all sudsy with this little beauty - the DHC Face Wash Powder.
dhc face wash powder

Unlike the aforementioned two, the powder from cult Japanese brand DHC is a cleanser and exfoliator in one and contains ingredients to do both jobs. This is not a new product but it has recently relaunched in this cute baby blue bottle with a flip top lid that allows you to pour the right amount of powder out.
Featuring a fine powder cornstarch base, the exfoliating action of the powder is delivered via protease enzyme - a kind of enzyme that aids in dissolving dead skin cells- while licorice, honey and lavender cleanse, soothe, soften and moisturise.
To use, you simply mix a little bit of the powder with water and massage it in to a wet face. The formula does lather up but not like traditional foaming cleansers or, say, a bar of soap. 
In other words it doesn't suck every last drop of water out of your skin but on the contrary my skin feels a bit moisturised once rinsed.
I found the exfoliation with this to be very gentle so I'd imagine it would be a good match for sensitive skins and, as is the standard with DHC products, it is fragrance free.

Overall I think this is a great little product and the powder formula makes it an ideal travel companion. I didn't find the exfoliation quite strong enough for my liking and I'm happy to use a separate cleanser and exfoliator but I can tell you that this little blue bottle came with me on an overnight break in Salisbury last weekend and it did the job just fine!

DHC Face Wash Powder is £9.50 for 50g of product and is available at DHCFeelunique , Escentual and other selected retailers.

Post contains sample