Saturday, 28 February 2015

Weekly Worship: Crabtree & Evelyn & Odin


Black Absinthe Eau de Cologne Review

Price: £45.00 / $59.00 100ml
The Black Absinthe Eau de Cologne is the new male fragrance from Crabtree & Evelyn. Although designed for men, I would place this fragrance firmly in the unisex category; I have to as it's fast become my favourite fragrance.

Black Absinthe contains top notes of absinthe, star anise, fennel flower, cardamom and bergamot and middle notes of artemisia, liquorice, French lavender and orange blossom. It is finished with base notes of tonka, vetiver, sandalwood, oak wood and musk.
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Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Wednesday Wisdom: Natasha Scripture


“The notion that wearing makeup is anti-feminist is silly. Cleopatra pretty much invented the eyeliner, and she ruled a kingdom!”

Natasha Scripture quote

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Saturday, 21 February 2015

Faithful Four: Face Oils


Best face oils

Perricone MD Chia Serum

Promise: “This scientifically formulated serum rapidly transforms dull, dry skin to a visibly vibrant, glowing and healthy complexion”
Price: £62.00 / $75.00 30ml
Purchase: Selfridges / Sephora

First up is the Perricone MD Chia Serum (aka the radiance booster of the group). Although the word 'serum' features in its title, this face oil really is just a face oil.

The Perricone MD Chia Serum is an antioxidant-rich face oil that is packed with - you guessed it - chia oil. Chia oil is extracted from the seeds of a chia plant, which is native to central and southern Mexico and Guatemala. Chia seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids strengthen the skin cell membrane of the epidermis and improve the texture and quality of the skin.
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Thursday, 19 February 2015

Win: Dermalogica Skincare Essentials


If there is one brand that knows skin, it is Dermalogica. The brand invests heavily in research and has a large arsenal of results-focused products that treat just about any skin concern. Also, if you're unsure of your skin type, or have a skin concern that you want looked at, Dermalogica offer a unique Face Mapping® service - find out more here!

As I use many Dermalogica products in my daily skincare routine and recommend the brand to many friends, I thought it was about time I gave y'all the chance to experience the brand. So, I have teamed up with Dermalogica to offer one reader the chance to win three of the brand's skincare essentials, worth over £100.00

Dermalogica competition

The first skincare essential up for grabs is the UltraCalming Cleanser. This gel-like cleanser is perfect for those with sensitive skin. It provides a nice cooling sensation whilst on the skin, is fragrance free and doesn't create any post-cleanse irritation or tightness. It also does an amazing job at removing tough makeup, a rarity in gentle cleansers. It also helps reduce redness and keeps skin hydrated long after it has been rinsed off.

Next up is the Daily Microfoliant, one of Dermalogica's most loved products. Unlike other exfoliators, this one comes in powder form and requires water to activate it. The rice-based powder is mixed with water to create an exfoliating paste. This paste, if made correctly, is easy to apply and - though gritty - feels gentle on the skin. It removes dead skin cells and dirt perfectly, leaving skin refreshed and glowing!

Finally we have the Super Sensitive Shield, a sunscreen with a SPF30. The Super Sensitive Sheild is formulated with 9% Zinc Oxide and 7% Titanium Dioxide, which provides great UVA and UVB protection. This protecting moisturiser has a light fluid texture that, unlike some sunscreens, applies easily and doesn't leave white marks on the skin. It just leaves skin protected and nourished and, as it contains Dermalogica's exclusive UltraCalming Complex, it is great for those with sensitive skin.

Win:
  • Dermalogica UltraCalming Cleanser
  • Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant
  • Dermalogica Super Sensitive Shield

If you want to win these skincare essentials, all you have to do is enter (via Rafflecopter) below!

Rules:
  • The giveaway will run for two weeks
  • The giveaway is open to UK residents only 
  • The winner will be contacted within 24 hours of the giveaway closing. If I don't hear from the winner within 48 hours, another winner will be chosen.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Wednesday Wisdom: Lynda Barry


“Expect the unexpected, and whenever possible, be the unexpected”


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Tuesday, 17 February 2015

The Tuesday Tip: Prevent Mascara From Clumping


Vintage mascara advert

Everyone loves mascaras that transform your lashes from thin and flat to thick and fabulous! However no one loves the clumping that can often come with using volumising and thickening mascaras.

single tear animated GIF

A quick tip to prevent mascara from clumping is to rotate your mascara wand over a clean tissue before applying it to the lashes. However, it is important to only do one full rotation, any more could remove too much product from the wand!

One of my favourite thickening mascaras is the Rodial Glamolash Mascara XXL (£24.00 rodial.co.uk / $28.00 amazon.com). This holy grail mascara lifts and thickens my lashes in just a few quick strokes and, most importantly, never leaves them clumpy!
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Monday, 16 February 2015

Ingredients 101: Vitamin C


Scientific Name: Ascorbic Acid

Natural or Synthetic: Both

The Science: Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that is found in certain foods. We don't store or accumulate vitamin C in our bodies, so we have to get it from food and other sources. Foods high in vitamin C include berries, kale, broccoli, citrus fruits and tomatoes. Although vitamin C is found naturally, it can also be produced in a laboratory.

Vitamin C is essential for overall body health; it helps protect cells and keeps them healthy and it helps to repair and regenerate tissues. Vitamin C also protects against heart disease and cancers, aids in the absorption of iron, helps wound healing and supports a healthy immune system.

Beauty Benefits: Vitamin C is a big skin healer, helping to repair damaged and dry skin. The hero ingredient also plays a major role in the production of collagen. As you know, when you age, collagen breaks down and wrinkles begin to form. So getting your vitamin C fix, both internally and topically, helps to keep premature skin-ageing at bay. Vitamin C is also known to treat UV damage and lighten dark discolouration, such as skin freckles and age spots.

Finally, vitamin C is one of the most effective nutrients at helping to grow and strengthen hair. It also strengthens nails and helps them grow.

Warnings: Vitamin C is considered safe to use topically

Found in: Kiehl's Powerful-Strength Line-Reducing Concentrate 50ml (£49.00 John Lewis / $60.00 Nordstrom). This super serum contains an impressive 10.5% pure vitamin C, helping to create a smoother, clearer and refreshed appearance. It has a thick consistency (well, thick for a serum) that applies easily and leaves skin with a velvety smooth finish. The best thing about this treatment is that it makes good on its promise; it really does reduce my fine lines!

Kiehl's Powerful-Strength Line-Reducing Concentrate review

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Friday, 13 February 2015

Review: Wheat Belly Diet Results



As some of you may know, I began the Wheat Belly diet on the first of January this year. I shared my progress and feelings about the diet in the first few weeks of starting it. However, as I have now completed an entire month on the diet, I thought I would share my final thoughts and experience.

Now, the Wheat Belly Diet has been very good to me. When I say good, I'm not bullshitting. After being on Wheat Belly for a whole calender month, I lost one stone. Yes, one whole stone! Not only did I loose a good amount of weight, I also felt better in myself; lighter, healthier and less stodgy (for want of a better word!).

Surprisingly, I found the diet a lot easier than I first imaged. I am a big wheat fan, so the fact that I was able to remove it from my diet completely speaks volumes. In the spirit of being honest, I did eat wheat on one or two occasions, however doing so made me feel sick and uncomfortably bloated.

It's important to stress that, although the Wheat Belly diet cuts out many food options, it still leaves a huge number of tasty foods you can eat. There are a million websites online that are full of great wheat-free recipes you can cook up.

As for whether I'll continue with the diet...absolutely. How could I not? It is simple and pain-free and proven to work - I love it!

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Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Wednesday Wisdom: Marlene Dietrich


“It's the friends you can call up at 4 a.m. that matter”



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Sunday, 8 February 2015

Review: Dr. Andrew Weil For Origins™ Mega-Bright Dark Spot Correcting Night Mask


Dr Weil Origins Mega-Bright Dark Spot Correcting Night Mask Review

The Promise: "This Dark Spot Correcting Night Mask helps restore translucency and diminishes the appearance of dark spots while you sleep. Skin awakens radiant and refreshed"

The Price: £48.00 / $74.40 75ml

The Stockist: Selfridges / feelunique.com

The Skin Type: Suitable for all skin-types

The Key Ingredients: Rosa Roxburghii, Molasses, Mulberry and Vitamin C and Chestnut Seed Extract

The Application: The Mega-Bright Dark Spot Correcting Night Mask has such a creamy and interesting texture, that it doesn't really feel like a mask at all, more like a moisturiser.

It has a medium, smooth consistency which glides on to the skin easily. I find myself using a little more product than I do with other masks because my skin absorbs it very quickly. Psychosomatic or not, I've always felt the need to have my skin slathered in a mask when I wear one.

When on the skin, this face mask feels weightless; it is easy to forgot you have it on. That's a great thing considering you don't actually remove this mask. I usually apply it an hour before bed and by this time the mask is fully absorbed, leaving absolutely no marks or stickiness on my pillow.

Now, a moment of silence for the scent. This face mask smells absolutely amazing; fresh, fruity and fabulous! I'm always five seconds away from eating it!

Origins Mega-Bright Dark Spot Correcting Night Mask Review

The Results: The results of this face mask are quite instant, showing themselves the next morning. Skin is softer and noticeably more radiant. Post-spot redness also gets lightened, making your spot history less obvious - hurrah!

Now, the results aren't permanent, they go by the following day. However due to the consistency of the product, you could get away with wearing this as a night cream every evening. Failing that you could apply it every other night, or just apply it the night before a special event.

The Pro: Feels weightless on the skin and makes skin instantly more radiant

The Con: The Mega-Bright Dark Spot Correcting Night Mask is expensive, so it might not cater for everyone's budget

PR sample

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Thursday, 5 February 2015

News: Pestle & Mortar Launch In The UK


Pestle & Mortar is a new Irish beauty brand that, after massive success in the Emerald Isle, has finally landed in the UK.

Founded by Sonia Deasy in 2014, Pestle & Mortar was born out of the need for the finest quality, skin enhancing, affordable beauty and health products that are customised to work wonders for your skin.

Pestle & Mortar are launching to the UK with hero product Pure Hyaluronic Serum 30ml (£33.00 pestleandmortarcosmetics.com). This hyaluronic acid-packed serum has been proven to hydrate and soothe even the most sensitive skin, while also smoothing fine lines, boosting radiance and restoring youthful elasticity.
Pestle & Mortar Pure Hyaluronic Serum

As you know, I am obsessed with products that contain hyaluronic acid, so I can't wait to get my hands on this hero hydrater!

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Tuesday, 3 February 2015

The Tuesday Tip: Prevent Eyeshadow Fallout


Girls who love dramatic eye makeup, or simply have a penchant for loose pigments, will understand the true pain of eyeshadow fallout.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the term, eyeshadow fallout refers to the speckles of eyeshadow, glitter or loose pigment that fall onto the face (usually underneath the eye area) during eye makeup application. Not only does fallout ruin existing makeup, trying to remove it always seems to make the problem worse.

Prevent Eyeshadow Fallout

Luckily there are a variety of tricks that help to prevent eyeshadow fallout. These include:
  • Applying an eyeshadow primer
  • Wetting your brush before applying product
  • Placing a tissue, cotton pad or business card underneath the eyes to catch fallout
  • Tapping excess product off of your brush before applying it
  • Adding a thick layer of translucent powder underneath the eyes before applying product. This enables any fallout to be swept away easily with a powder brush

However as helpful as these tricks are, the best way to avoid fallout is to simply apply eye makeup before any other makeup. By starting with the eyes, any fallout that occurs during makeup application can simply be wiped away!

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Monday, 2 February 2015

Win: Antipodes Hero Products


Antipodes is one of my favourite skincare brands. Not only are all the products 100% natural but they provide some amazing, scientifically proven results. I am not alone in my level of worship, supermodels go wild for the New Zealand brand; Cara Delevingne, Elle Macpherson and Georgia May Jagger to name just a few.

So I have teamed up with Antipodes to offer one of you lovely people the chance to win three of my favourite Antipodes products, worth £80.00!

Antipodes skincare competition

The first product up for grabs is the Saviour Skin Balm, a multi-purpose healing balm that fixes everything from acne and sunburn, to insect bites, chapped lips and bruises. The miracle balm comes in a beautiful tin and travels with me everywhere I go! Next is the Joyful Hand & Body Cream. This ultra-nourishing cream smells absolutely divine and moisturises the skin the second it's applied, leaving it oh-so-smooth.

The final product ready for the winning is one of Antipodes most famous...the Aura Manuka Honey Mask. Containing a base ingredient of New Zealand's own manuka honey, this much-loved face mask deeply hydrates the skin, fixes any dry patches and helps to heal skin damage - acne in particular. It smells divine and works wonders...it's my go-to product when my skin needs a reboot.

Win:
  • Antipodes Saviour Skin Balm
  • Antipodes Joyful Hand & Body Cream
  • Antipodes Aura Manuka Honey Mask

If you want to win these natural wonders, all you have to do is enter (via Rafflecopter) below!

Rules:
  • The giveaway will run for two weeks
  • The giveaway is only open to UK residents
  • The winner will be contacted within 24 hours of the giveaway closing. If I don't hear from the winner within 48 hours, another winner will be chosen.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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Sunday, 1 February 2015

Review: Pola Teeth Whitening At Knightsbridge Dental Care


Teeth whitening is always something I've wanted to have done. I don't have discoloured teeth, however I've always wanted them a little whiter. So, out of pure vanity, I set my whitening journey in motion and found myself at Knightsbridge Dental Care.

Knightsbridge Dental Care is a dental practice that is located in the heart of Knightsbridge. It has a rich history, great reputation and an experienced and skilled team. The dental practice covers all aspects of general dentistry, from routine fillings to cosmetic dentistry and dental implants and it prides itself on a high quality, discreet and personalised dental service.

Now, there are many types of whitening treatments available, from whitening toothpaste and whitening strips to custom-made whitening trays. Knightsbridge Dental Care offer the latter as it is considered the safest type of professional whitening out there.

Before beginning the treatment, my teeth were examined to ensure they were healthy and suitable for whitening. The condition of my teeth also indicated the strength of treatment I could have. Molds were then taken of my teeth, which involved a large mouth guard full of blue putty being pressed against my top and bottom teeth (one set at a time) for a few seconds until the putty hardened. The completed molds were then used to create my custom-made whitening trays.

Pola Teeth Whitening review

I returned to Knightbridge Dental Care a week later to pick up my trays and whitening gels. I was then given all the information I needed to use the whitening gels and trays safely and correctly. The whitening gels I received were the PolaNight (containing 16% carbamide peroxide) - for overnight use (nine hours maximum), and PolaDay (containing 6% hydrogen peroxide) - a whitening boost treatment that can only be applied for a maximum of 45 minutes. The rest of the treatment was then left to me...

I found the whitening really easy. The PolaDay and PolaNight come in syringes, helping to distribute the whitening gel into the trays evenly and easily. You can choose to whiten as many teeth as you like, however I only chose to whiten those visible when I smile. Only a tiny amount of gel is required per tooth because, once the trays are inserted, the gel spreads out and covers the entire surface of the teeth. The trays themselves feel very comfortable when inserted - if it wasn't for the slight lisp they give me when I talk, I would barley notice they're there. With just one syringe, I am able to fill both the top and bottom trays three times. This is what my one week treatment consisted of; three evenings using PolaNight and three boosting treatments using PolaDay.

Here are the results...

Pola Teeth Whitening before and after

I loved my teeth whitening experience. Although my teeth don't look shockingly whiter in the picture above, I am very happy with the results. As you can see, my teeth were relatively white to start with, however the whitening lifted some staining on my bottom teeth and made my teeth look brighter and healthier overall. Now, I could have continued whitening my teeth to show you just how powerful this treatment is; after all, I have two syringes of PolaDay and PolaNight left! However the more product you use, the whiter your teeth get and, quite frankly, there is such a thing as too white.

The treatment cost £400.00, which is quite expensive, however the results are amazing and the procedure is pain-free and super simple. Knightsbridge Dental Care were amazing - they provided with me with all the information I could possibly need and were always available if I had further questions or worries.

For me, custom-made whitening trays are the perfect way to whiten teeth - I would recommend it to anyone. The best thing about the treatment is that, once the gels have run out, you can buy some more...they are really affordable (I'm talking £23.00 for a pack of four syringes!). The most expensive part of the treatment is the custom-made whitening trays. So, as long as you look after your trays, you should be able to whiten your smile (affordably) for years!

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