20 Jul 2014

Moisturising Facial SPF from Balance Me

Balance Me

Balance Me SPF25 Moisturiser

Balance Me Natural Protection Moisturiser SPF25* £26.00 

When it comes to SPF and protecting my skin from the sun I haven’t always been very good at it, although I have been a lot better in my 30′s than I was in my 20′s. I know most damage is done before we are 20 but we still need to protect ourselves from the harmful effects of sun damage no matter what age we are. We are all becoming a little more sun aware & with products like this Balance Me Natural Protection Moisturiser its getting easier to protect ourselves. I have been vigilant at applying a facial SPF this year & without fail I have worn at least SPF25. I have made applying a broad spectrum SPF part of my skincare regime & it’s a step I will not miss out.

Balance Me have this Natural Protection Moisturiser with SPF25 and it is for all skin types, It is quite a creamy white consistency (fairly lightweight) takes a little massaging in but once you have left it to absorb for a few minutes there is absolutely no white cast on your skin, you can apply your foundation over the top if you wish without it feeling greasy or like you have too many layers of product on. I think it makes a good base, hydrating and slightly dewy too.

Balance Me say ‘Our rich yet easily absorbed SPF 25 face cream is specially designed to care and protect skin in everyday life. To support your skin’s own defence system, our SPF 25 moisturiser contains an innovative natural titanium dioxide-based sun filter to block out both UVA and UVB rays. A blend of super hydrating hyaluronic acid and powerful anti-oxidant blackberry leaf extract with essential fatty acid-rich rosehip, camellia, kukui nut and jojoba oils work gently yet effectively to soothe, firm and shield your precious skin as well as enhancing the activity of the sun filter.

So this SPF is packed full of skin benefits which whilst protecting your skin from sun damage that will in turn help reduce the signs of premature ageing, shield it from environmental aggressors and keep it hydrated this is definitely a product to have in your skincare routine. The fact that it’s not only a very good SPF but also a very effective moisturiser mean that you don’t have to apply as many products whilst still giving your skin maximum protection from both UVA rays which penetrate deeper & are responsible for premature ageing & are always present even during the winter and UVB rays which cause your skin to burn & are stronger during the summer months.

Balance Me Skincare

The top photo is me starting to massage the moisturiser into my hand and the bottom photo shows you that after a few minutes the cream has been absorbed and there is no residue and no white cast.

This contain Hyluronic Acid which is a bit of a beauty buzz word at the moment & we are all looking for products that contain it – its good because it provides your skin with deep hydration & it holds up to 1,000 times its weight in water. This is good for delivering water to your skin and also hold it there to provide hydration, plump skin which helps reduce the size of your fine lines & wrinkles. 

Balance Me Skincare

The thing that I like most is that it doesn’t feel like you’re wearing a heavy sun screen, its not tacky on the skin or greasy. This innovative formula has taken Balance Me over 2 years of research & it has been developed so it’s even suitable for people with sensitive skin. Its lightweight formula is soothing, nourishing and doesn’t block pores making it a great moisturiser to wear all year round. So you can benefit from not only its skincare benefits but its sun protecting qualities too. Thats a win win situation in my book. I want to keep the wrinkles and age spots at bay for as long as I can.

Let me know what facial SPF’s you have been enjoying and let me know if you wear one on a daily basis?

Products that are marked with an * have either been sent to me for my consideration or I’ve received at events. I’m under no obligation to review them on my blog. However if I do, the reviews are 100% my own

23 Jun 2014

Origins GinZing Refreshing Scrub Cleanser



Oh WOW this is the perfect Summer Cleanser! The Origins Ginzing Refreshing Scrub Cleanser* was released this month and seems to already have a cult following. I have been putting it to the test for about 5 weeks now and its slowly but surely become my go to Summer Scrub. First off is the fact it smells incredible, fresh & fruity so that makes it all the more pleasurable to use. I like to use it in the morning after I shower, the fresh citrus Grapefruit, Lemon and Spearmint zingy scent wakes me up and the gentle exfoliating scrubbing beads do the same to my skin. So I feel well and truly awake and energised.

Origins Skincare

The cleanser has a thick gel like texture and its bursting with lots light orange exfoliating beads, although this is a manual scrub, the scrubby beads feel very gentle and not scratchy at all.  I like to gently massage this in to my skin focusing on my nose area (where I tend to get blackheads) then I leave it on my skin for a couple of minutes letting the energising Panax Ginseng and Coffee Bean Caffeine work their magic then I rinse with warm water and I’m left with glowing, smooth summer ready skin. This is really effective at removing dead skin cells and dirt  & so boosting cell turnover to reveal vibrant skin. Also the gel like texture is very cooling on the skin and hydrating so your skin won’t be left feeling stripped or tight.

This is a great 2 in 1 product as the gel cleanser removes makeup and dirt  whilst the exfoliating beads help remove the dead skin and awaken dull tired complexion. The Orange packaging is eye catching and its another great addition to the GinZing range which already boasts a moisturiser (which I love), eye cream, mascara and eyeshadow.

If you like to use products that help promote a glowing healthy complexion then this is for you & as I said this really is a gentle yet effective scrub. You don’t need to scrub your face off, just softly massage it in to your skin & rinse off.

The tube is 150ml & costs £18.50 so I’d say thats great value for money. Origins is available in larger Boots Stores, John Lewis Stores and online at www.origins.co.uk

Products that are marked with an * have either been sent to me for my consideration or I’ve received at events. I’m under no obligation to review them on my blog. However if I do, the reviews are 100% my own.

5 Jun 2014

REN Rosa Centifolia Hot Cloth Cleanser

I think we are all familiar with the Hot Cloth cleanser by now, massage on to dry skin & wipe away using a damp warm face cloth. They’ve become very popular in the beauty world and I for one really like using a Hot Cloth Cleanser in the evening, I find them to be relaxing and a great way to remove makeup and wipe away all the grime & dirt from the day. So I was excited to use the REN Rosa Centifolia Hot Cloth Cleanser* which comes with a lovely 100% Cotton face cloth (perfect).

This Hot Cloth Cleanser is a rich two-phase cleanser that purifies, decongests, gently exfoliates and removes all make-up. It leaves skin refreshed, radiant, smoothed and replenished without dryness or tightness. The cleanser itself is very creamy and light in texture, I massage it in to my skin for a couple of minutes so it can start to breakdown my makeup and the dead skin cells. I also make sure to take it all across my eyes to loosen my eye makeup. This doesn’t irritate my eyes at all, in fact this is a very gentle cleanser so don’t be afraid to use it all over your face. It is gentle enough to be used on all skin types, this has a very mild rose scent but its so subtle you hardly know its there. 

HC Cleanser

This does a really good job at removing my makeup and leaving my skin feeling clean and smooth, its not stripping so you won’t experience that tight drying feeling (that I hate). I had never heard of Vitamin P but this cleanser contains it & a few more nourishing ingredients that help revive, soothe and decongest your skin. Let me know if you’ve heard of Vitamin P. The main bio extracts in this cleanser are

Since using this my complexion has been looking bright and the redness around my cheeks is reduced, I think because this has such a hydrating and soothing milky texture my skin isn’t getting dried out or irritated, you don’t need to be abrasive when washing it off. Just polish away the product using the cotton face cloth and then splash a little cold water on your face once it’s clean to close your pores.

The packaging of this is really handy too, it comes with a pump which is great for dispensing just the right amount of product (also very hygienic), you can also see how much product you have left as you’re able to see the cleanser through the clear packaging. So no panic when you come to use it & there is none left, you will get plenty of warning. If you like using a Hot Cloth Cleanser then I think you should give this one a go, you will be left with a healthy complexion and skin thats clean, hydrated and decongested. It gets two thumbs up from me.

This contains no parabens, sulphates, mineral oil, synthetic colours or scents.

REN Rosa Centifolia Hot Cloth Cleanser £16 for 150ml

REN Skincare

I have also been testing out a few samples of the REN V-Cense Flash Rinse 1 Minute Facial*, as I only have a couple of sachets to test out I can’t tell you how this performs long term but I had enough for three uses & I’m already excited for this to go on sale so I can get the full size.

The way this works is you apply the light green coloured gel to your face & neck then massage a small amount of warm water to activate the Vitamin C and let it get to work brightening your complexion. You leave the product on your skin for 1 minute then you rinse with warm water and thats when the tiny exfoliating beads get to work by buffing and removing dead skin and help fight the signs of fatigue, boost skins radiance levels and reduce imperfections.

REN say – ‘Discover a high-perfomance complexion boost that lasts 72 hours with the V-Cense Flash Rinse 1 Minute Facial! A transformative gel-rinse that instantly revitalises and visibly rejuvenates the skin. Formulated with water activated Vitamin C, it neutralises ‘urban grey’ in a flash, removes blackheads and dead skin cells to reveal a firm, toned and smooth complexion.’ 

Its like a facial and a face mask in one and it only takes you one minute – perfect if your pushed for time. This has a lovely quite sweet chocolate orange scent with a hint of peppermint (how yummy does that sound). I have used the sachets I was given to try and I loved how instantly smooth and bright my skin looked & thats after 1 minute. So I imagine after a more long term use your complexion will look less dull and start to have that healthy glow we all long for. I liked using this in the morning so my skin looked healthy and fresh for the day ahead.

REN Skincare

I think this is going to be a popular addition to the REN range, I mean who doesn’t want quick no fuss skincare that gives results in just one minute. This V-Cense 1 minute facial isn’t released until later this year, so this is a heads up, I will be treating myself to a bottle & getting onboard with the 1 minute facial.  I don’t know the exact release date of this but it will be £30 for 75ml.

Let me know what you favourite REN product is & if you like the sound of a 1 minute facial.

Products that are marked with an * have either been sent to me for my consideration or I’ve received at events. I’m under no obligation to review them on my blog. However if I do, the reviews are 100% my own.

4 Jun 2014

Holland & Barrett Big Beauty Swap

A heads up to all my lovely readers, you have until June 11th to take part in Holland & Barrett’s Big Beauty Swap – they are encouraging everyone to bring their empty / half used products such as shampoo, shower gel and moisturiser to their local store and swap them for 25% discount off a huge selection of natural alternatives. So have a clear out & see what you can find.

Beauty Swap

Holland & Barrett are proud to only sell products that contain no nasties & this started 5 years ago when they banned toiletries containing chemical preservatives, such as parabens and sodium laurel sulphate (SLS), as part of their public commitment to natural beauty products.

So if you want to get involved in their Big Beauty Swap pop in to your local store armed with your empty products (which they will recycle). I’m a regular shopper in my local store and made the switch last year to use Natural Deodorant after having quite a severe allergic reaction to one that wasn’t natural so I can highly recommend the Dr Organic Organic Deodorant (my deodorant of choice).

There are so many of my favourite brands included in the sale such as Burt’s Bees, Dr Organic, Manuka Doctor, Dead Sea Spa & Montagne Face Masks.  If you’re unable to get in to your local store don’t worry, the 25% discount is also available on their website until June 11th.

Holland & Barrett

Let me know if you treat yourself to any of their natural beauty products, here is what I have my eye on.




28 May 2014

My Introduction to Decleor

Decleor Skincare

Decleor Skincare

I have been trying out this Decleor Lift & Fill Wrinkle Mask* from their Prolagene range, it is a mask more suitable to Mature Skin or for those of us that are seeing more lines and wrinkles appearing. It is for specifically targeting deep facial wrinkles, firming those areas and making them appear more plump.

This Prolagene Lift range is based around three active ingredients,

Iris Essential Oil  (boosts skins elasticity // L-PROLINE Complex (amino acid for lifting and reshaping) // Hyaluronic Acids (plumping)

Together these drip feed a blend of highly concentrated active ingredients offering immediate hydration and instantly smoother skin. Along with the instant effects this also has long lasting effects due to the Lifting Filler that combined with the L-PROLINE Complex encourages intercellular communication to plump up wrinkles.

This has a gel cream formula that is absorbed quickly in to the skin & is suitable for all skin types, my skin is generally quite Oily but is also dehydrated around my eyes. I used this as directed twice a week as a targeted wrinkle treatment. I have quite deep wrinkle around my eyes and around my mouth. I applied a ten pence piece sized amount to those specific areas, I left it for 10 minutes then I massaged what product hadn’t been absorbed in to those areas. I like to use this after cleansing and before bed. I see the best results that way.

I think another plus of this mask is the fact you don’t need to wash it off, its fuss free. You just rub the extra product in to your skin. So it is easy to use where-ever you are and if you’re pushed for time.

In terms of results it was quite remarkable as when I woke from using this the second time the wrinkles around my mouth were visibly reduced and not only that the area looked plump and very smooth, even my husband commented on how plump that area looked. I was very impressed with the results. Going forward and after having used this mask for 7 weeks, I think the results are undeniably good. My skin is looking smoother and my deep set wrinkles have been visibly reduced. My mum who is 56 (hello Linda) was right on this & she bought herself a tube after hearing me going on about it. I can see it visibly reducing her deep set wrinkles and I’d say her skin is looking plump too.


The packaging is nice and user friendly, it has a handy pump that dispenses just enough product without being messy or wasteful. The product is lightweight and highly absorbent so no greasy feeling here, but your skin still feels the benefits of it being extremely hydrating. You get 30ml of product and as it is a targeted treatment you barely use any product, I have a feeling this is going to last me at least a year.

So if you’re in your late 30′s + and are looking for a mask that delivers targeted results on not only the first signs of ageing but also deep set wrinkles then I urge you to give this Decleor Prolagene Lift Mask a try. I don’t think I have ever used an at home mask thats delivered such reducing and plumping effects. Excuse me whilst I invest in the whole range.

This mask contains no mineral oil and is fragrance free.

Decleor Prolagene Lift : Lift & Fill Wrinkle Mask* 30ml for £32.00

25 May 2014

La Roche-Posay Anthelios SPF Giveaway

I’m really excited for this giveaway, if you read my blog you will know that I have found my Holy Grail Facial SPF & it is the La Roche-Posay Anthelios XL Dry Touch Gel Cream SPF50+.  This has changed the way I feel about facial SPF, it’s lightweight, non greasy and wears really well under makeup. Its also broad spectrum UVA & UVB protection, so as we’re approaching the summer this is the perfect time to test it out.  I have worn it without fail everyday, rain or shine for the past 7 weeks.

La Roche-Posay Skincare

I have 2 full sized products to give away & 2 super cute minis.

Please Be Aware of the following - 

This giveaway is for UK residents only

The winner will contacted via Twitter / Email and have 48hrs to respond

It’s open for one week and the winner will be announced on Monday 2nd June

This Prize was kindly provided by La Roche-Posay*

So follow the instructions below to enter – Good Luck.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

13 May 2014

Nair Brazilian Spa Clay Wax Strips

I like to research the beauty purchases I make. I read reviews & try to only spend my money on products I know I will use and I will really like. I hate spending my money on products that are disappointing, especially as in the UK we are unable to return beauty products (which I think is crap). So I threw caution to the wind & bought these Nair Brazilian Clay Facial Wax Strips -  I REALLY needed them. I normally use the Veet ones but these Nair ones were new and on offer in Superdrug so I was sucked in by the offer & now wish I’d stuck to the Veet ones which I know work.

Facial Wax Strips

You get 20 wax strips, 2 cooling wipes & 2 post wipes. You could get 40 wax strips & that still wouldn’t have been enough. You have to warm the strips in your hands to heat up the wax, which is nothing new. I did this with the first two strips and when I peeled the strip appart to apply to my skin the wax hadn’t become soft & so it just cracked. I thought I needed to heat it up a little more so i held it to my very warm radiator & that worked a little better but it was still a little dry.

Nair Wax Strips

I applied these two to my skin & tried to peel them off, NO hair caught the Wax and nothing was waxed. I was starting to get a little annoyed. Eventually after wasting 8 dry wax strips I managed to get one that caught some hair but at this point I knew percentage wise I wasn’t going to have enough to do my eyebrows let alone anywhere else & it was so bad at waxing the hair on my upper lip that I feared I was going to have to go out with it half done (so embarrassing).

These are a complete waste of money & I will stick to my Veet ones, I ended up using my tweezers and having a plucking session and giving up with the wax strips. Let me know what you use to get rid of your unwanted hair or if you have tried this new range form Nair.

12 May 2014

Free Manuka Doctor Mini Hero Kit

Manuka Doctor is a brand that you can get in Superdrug  and recently won Best New Brand at the CEW(UK) beauty awards. I wanted to give you all a heads up as you can get a FREE Mini Hero Kit* from their website. This kit is normally £12.99 but all you need to do is pay the postage of £2.50 & its yours.

3 Skincare Samples from Manuka Dotor

Free Sample of Manuka Doctor Skincare

This kit is a great way to try this brand if you’re curious about their products, without having to splash out on the full size items & lets you give them a trial run. It would also be a handy kit to take away on your holiday, for a little pamper session.  This Mini Hero Kit contains three sample sizes of:-

Api Nourish Rejuvinating Face Mask 7ml – Natural Way to combat wrinkles & a great way to promote skins elasticity.

Api Clear Skin Treatment Serum 5ml – A great serum for significantly improving blemish prone skin

Api Refine Targeted Wrinkle Filler 3ml – Clinically proven to reduce wrinkles in just 30 minutes.

Manuka Doctor Skincare

You get 3 decent sized samples to try out. I am excited to try the Wrinkle Filler, as my fine lines are looking deeper by the day. You also get a voucher for 25% off your next Manuka Doctor order. So thats a nice bonus. I always love trying new brands & its even better if they offer sample sizes so you can makeup your mind whether or not to buy the full size.

Let me know if you treat yourself to this Hero Kit. Im off for a pamper session to test them all out.

Grab your Free Mini Hero Kit here. You just need to pay the P&P

Products that are marked with an * have either been sent to me for my consideration or I’ve received at events. I’m under no obligation to review them on my blog. However if I do, the reviews are 100% my own.


11 May 2014

Feeling Lucky : French Skincare Win

I am an avid reader of Claire & Nic’s blog Agent Smyth & was thrilled to discover I’d won their 500 Followers Giveaway, I thought you might be interested to see what goodies came in my prize. I was so thrilled as it was a French Skincare giveaway and I must be the only beauty blogger on the planet who has yet to really try much French Skincare. The only thing I’d tried was the Caudalie Beauty Elixir and the scent of that reminds me of San Francisco as I took it on the plane with me & sprayed it every half an hour like a crazy lady trying to keep hydrated.

A selection of French Skincare

Bioderma – I have wanted to try this for the longest time but I really don’t like shopping online. I’m more of an in store put your hands on it kind of shopper and I’ve never been in a shop that sells this. So to say I am excited to use this is an understatement. Im currently using the Garnier Micellar Water & it will be great to see how they compare. I think I already know the answer to that.

La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo+ This is another cult blogger favourite and I could really use some of it’s pore unclogging abilities right about now! Let me know if you have used this & how it worked best for you.

Caudalie Beauty Elixir – As I said I have had a couple bottles of this over the past 2 years and sometimes I love it & other times the scent of it is overpowering. Depending on what mood I’m in the minty scent is too much for me. I do think its a nice facial spritz and its refreshing. I like to take it traveling as its a handy in flight pick me up.

NUXE Reve de Miel Honey Lip Balm – This is quite possibly the most talked about lip product in the blogging community & I was too excited to wait to photograph this before I stuck my finger in it & smeared it all over my lips. It smells lovely and sweet and is quite thick in texture. I liked how it felt on my lips, not greasy but you can feel a layer of balm on there. My lips are currently smooth & very happy. I’m converted to the NUXE way of life now.

So thats my French stash of prizes and I’m treasuring each one & I’m delighted to have won – they’ve certainly come to a good home that will use them all up. So thank you ladies (Claire & Nic)  for the amazing prize & congrats on the 500 Followers. If you’re not already following them pop over & show them a little love.

7 May 2014

YOU Beauty Discovery CEW(UK) 2014 Limited Edition Box

So in honour of the prestigious CEW(UK) –  Cosmetic Executive Women UK awards, You Beauty Discovery have teamed up with them to bring you a box jam packed to the brim full of beauty products that will not disappoint. Unlike most other beauty boxes You Beauty Discovery lets you see which products will be your box so there are no disappointments, only happy customers.

OU Beauty Discovery CEW(UK) 2014 Limited Edition Box

YOU Beauty Discovery CEWUK Box

This limited edition You Beauty Discovery CEW(UK) Box* has a selection of products from the finalist & winners of this years awards, so you’re getting to try some of the best selling & most sort after products from the past year. You’re really getting the cream of the beauty crop. Each product in this box made me squeal a little with excitement, the contents are worth almost £100 & you can get it for £16.95 (not including P&P). So what is in the box I hear you say …..

You Beauty Box

Philip Kingsley Elasticizer 40ml – This is a blogger favourite and somewhat of a cult product. It is a pre shampoo conditioning treatment. Designed to give your hair a boost of hydration to the hair cuticle – this in turn gives your hair suppleness, elasticity and bounce. Sounds ideal for my limp hair. I’m very excited to see if this lives up to the hype.

Philip Kingsley Haircare

L’Occitane En Provence  Almond Milk Concentrate 50ml – This almond oil & almond milk body lotion helps soften and nourish skin. This new formula also helps protect skin elasisity, tighten & smooth whilst stimulating cell renewal. That all sounds very fancy & I hope its as good as it smells, as the scent is incredible so sweet & rich. Its a lovely light cream which absorbs instantly. I will use this a little more and let you know how I get on, but after a few uses my skin does feel silky soft.

L'Occitane Almond Body Milk

Elemis Pro Collagen Marine Cream 15ml – This cream promises to transform my complexion in just 2 weeks (bold claims). Its a high performance, marine based anti ageing gel-cream moisturiser suitable for all skin types. Now how can I not put this to the test – my skin could do with transforming & if Elemis live up to their claims I will be one very happy lady. The few products I have tried from Elemis I have loved so I’m sure this isn’t going to disappoint. It has a slight scent to it but nothing over powering, it feels light on my skin and is non greasy. I will let you know how this works for me after the 2 weeks are up.

Elemis Pro Collagen Marine Cream

Dr Organic Moroccan Argan Oil Hair Treatment Serum 100ml – This is a very lightweight hair serum made with the finest Moroccan Argan Oil, which a great source of vitamins, anti-oxidants and essential fatty acids together with a number of organic essential oils & extracts will keep your hair feeling silky smooth, eliminate frizz and look glossy. So that sounds perfect for summer! My hair is very dark brown and can look quite dull, especially when its dry. So this sounds like just the thing to inject a little moisture and nourishment. This is a whopping 100ml (full size) and will last for ages as two pumps was enough for my shoulder length hair. After one use my hair did feel nice & easy to run my fingers through but I want to use this for a a couple more weeks before I let you know if I really like it. But so far so good.

Dr Organic Haircare

Manuka Doctor Mini Hero Kit – This is a set of 3 skincare sachets to help achieve beautiful skin. You get a 5ml Skin Treatment Serum / 3ml Targeted Wrinkle Filler / 7ml Rejuvenating Face Mask. This is a great little taster of the brand and the perfect kit to take away on holiday so you can have a pamper session. I love the sound of all three of these and will have an at home pamper session to try them out. It says that this kit is clinically proven to promote skins elasticity, improve blemish prone skin and reduce wrinkles. Sounds like they have all bases covered. Its a cute little kit & something tells me I’m going to enjoy it.

Manuka Doctor Skincare Set

GlamGlow Youthmud Tinglexfoliate Treatment 15g – This is such a well loved & hyped product amongst bloggers & I have wanted to try it for the longest time. I am over the moon so so excited that this is in my box & it is a pretty decent size luxury sample. This award winning mask is said to provide a flawless finish and glowing complexion in just 10 minutes. So expect some face mask selfies of me over the next week. I’m going to enjoy every minute of testing this mask as it has been on my wishlist for the longest time.

GlamGlow Youthmud Mask

YOU Beauty Discovery CEW(UK) 2014 Limited Edition Box – £16.95 (not including P&P)

So thats 5 luxury samples & a full size products, also in the box you get lots of discount codes to redeem against future purchases & a mini sample of the Caudalie Divine Legs. So this box really is packed full of only amazing products for you to try. Beauty enthusiasts be quick at this box is limited edition and with contents this good it won’t be available for long. Its worth it for the GlamGlow Mask alone.

Products that are marked with an * have either been sent to me for my consideration or I’ve received at events. I’m under no obligation to review them on my blog. However if I do, the reviews are 100% my own.

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