Glow tools

Happy birthday! 2017 marks 10 years of EcoTools and as I mentioned before, the brand has revamped their winning collection and added some pretty (and do-good) surprises to celebrate.

And the official celebration piece is the Limited Edition Anniversary Collection that comes in a gorgeous (and very handy) rose gold circular tin.

There are six brushes to help you create an illuminating glow:

Airbrushed finish: duo fibre that works well with powder, creams and liquid foundation, to buff that base right in. Personally, I think this one could be a bit firmer but does a great job creating that foundation for the makeup.

Controlled setting: tapered for precise highlighting and setting on cheekbones and brow arches.

Angled crease: great for smoking, in any proportion; just to create a bit of definition and dimension of smoke away.

Flat eyeliner: a hero for upper or lower lining that works a treat with powder, liquid and gel.

Eye/Lip blur: so soft to diffuse shadows and liners. Great to blend harsh lines on eyeshadow, eye or lip liners.

Spoolie: great brow and lash combing.

The sturdy canister is great to protect brushes while in transit. And looks great on a dressing table.

All brushes are super soft on the skin and have a bamboo handle with recycled aluminium ferrules and cruelty free bristles.

This lovely EcoTools Limited Edition Anniversary Collection is available at Boots (with a buy 1 get 2nd half price on EcoTools*) and Superdrug (at the moment with a 3 for 2 on EcoTools*) for £19.99.

And hurry because it’s limited edition, so be speedy!

written by Dani

*Information correct at the time of publishing (21 May 2017).

You know the drill, but I’ll say anyway: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

More good from the grape

No, it is not champagne! It’s Caudalie, of course, silly!

When the weather changes, my skin tends to suffer. I did talk about it a while back, but twice a year history repeats itself so I’m always on the lookout for new products to restore the glow through the transition phase and if they have pollution protection, even better.

Enter Caudalie Vine[Active], a collection of four products designed to support the skin and help prevent cell burn-out, which accelerates close to out mid-thirties.

The Anti-Cell Burnout Complex has vitamins E and C, stabilised grape seed polyphenol, and spruce extract to, respectively, maintain radiance, boost collagen and maintain melanin productions, preserve collagen and natural hyaluronic acid and stimulate cellular defense and, protect skin against oxidation.

Obviously I’ll start with the oil. The Overnight Detox Oil (£36) is 100% natural with omega 6, vitamin E and six essential oils (carrot, grapeseed, lavender, white sandalwood, sweet almond, rose, musk and neroli).

It’s a luscious oil that sinks well on the skin; which wakes up plump and healed. I love the distinctive herbal smell this oil has.

The VineActive Glow Activating Anti-Wrinkle Serum (£36) is another favourite. So light in contrast with the oil, it is great for wearing under makeup.

It has the Anti-Cell Burnout Complex together with hyaluronic acid in low molecular weight. It helps with skin ageing prevention and pigmentation.

Again, I use it in combination with the oil, at night and the VineActive 3-in-1 moisturiser (£32) during the day, which contains the same ingredients of the serum, for added plumping, plus anti-pollution polysaccharides and soft focus mattifying powders making it a great day cream, nourishing and creating that protection barrier. An SPF wouldn’t go amiss!

Finally, another obsession of mine: eye creams. The VineActive Energizing and Smoothing Eye Cream (£27.50) also carries the anti Burnout complex together with peptides, fern and liquorice extracts and horse chestnut to lift, combat puffiness and dark circles.

Very light and quickly absorbed, I feel this eye cream is suitable for day or night. It also doesn’t upset my sensitive eye, which is a bonus!

The range is available from the Caudalie website and shops, as well as selected retailers.

And there’s also the purifying VineActive Facial Treatment available at the Caudalie spas, which deep cleanses and detoxifies. It includes thorough cleansing, deep exfoliation, detoxifying mask and moisturising, with a lymph and blood circulation activating facial massage.

Adding some oh-la-la to my skincare routine

Indemne.

Eau de Génie is a multi-tasking facial toner. Organic, it is basically fruits (lemon, grapefruit, apricot and tomato) water that revitalises, tightens pores and soothes skin while also removing micelles. It is also brightening and lightly moisturising as it contains lemon peel oil.

Because it is so gentle, it is suitable for all skin types and adolescent skin. It also works really well as a refresher; it behaves well over makeup. You can even keep it in the fridge!

As a toner, apply to cleansed skin and remove it a cotton pad, without rinsing. Skin feels fresh and comfortable after use. personally, I find it great as a facial mist.

And if you suffer from breakouts like me, you might want to use, in conjunction with Eau de Génie, the Gimme Clear! lotion.

In reality, it is a light oil that smells rather herbal formulated with natural essential oils and vegetable oils, such as hazelnut, hemp seed, carrot, citrus peel, cinnamon bark and oregano flower,  to purify and help reduce sebum and shine in the skin.

It works on blemishes and spots prevention, by helping declog pores and also aids in healing existing pimples. As it is an oil, it also contributes to skin hydration and improved texture.

One pump is enough for the face; the oil is light and absorbs quickly. I personally prefer using it at night, sometimes I just rub it on the blemishes themselves instead of using on the whole face.

You can get Indemne on their website. Eau de Génie cost £15.53 (135ml) and Gimme Clear! £18.42 (50ml). They also do haircare and beauty accessories.

You know the drill, but I’ll say anyway: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Women empowerment and flawless makeup

Now, in my book, makeup and women empowerment go hand in hand. Makeup makes my outside look like I feel inside and ready to take on the world.

Think what you like of that. Haters will disagree and say that too pretty cannot be powerful. Thing again. It comes from within so suck it up.

And EcoTools is not only supporting female empowerment but also enabling it via their Women’s Empowerment Collections raising awareness (and money) for women’s education.

The #MyTrueBeauty campaign continues the brand’s commitment to Global Education by supporting Glamour’s The Girl Project with a $100,000 donation and the launch of 3 limited edition makeup brush collections raising awareness to the project’s work.

I was lucky enough to get my hands on the Glow for it collection, which comes with all the tools to unleash your glowing true beauty.

It comes with an angled powder (great for bronzer, blusher or highlighter), eye shadow applicator, pointed concealer (for spot on application), highlighting fan (glow, glow!), eye shading brushes and a pretty mini mirror reminding you to, well, just Glow for it, girl!

The EcoTool brushes are super soft, durable and extremely efficient tools. Their light-coloured bamboo handle is comfortable and the pink ferrules make this set super sweet.

Also, they are made of renewable and recyclable materials (such as tree-free paper and RPET clamshell packaging), to help reduce the amount of waste into the environment.

See? Prettier on the outside and the inside!

Eco Tools, the gorgeous eco-minded brand, is celebrating 10 years young and has re-vamped their extensive collection. They called it New Modern Eco Collection and the brushes have been redesigned, featuring tapered light-weight handles, ombre bristles and brighter ferrules.

The limited edition Women’s Empowerment Collection is composed of three sets: Glow for it, Prepped for change and Eye am courageous, each £19.99, available at ecotools.com and selected Boots and Superdrug.

And go on, support a woman like yourself (or like one in your life), by supporting The Girl Project. Only $5 will help provide school supplies to take a small – or big – girl through education.

You know the drill, but I’ll say anyway: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Plumping elasticity for the skin

Just because I have a blemish prone skin does not mean I don’t think about concerns; I should be so lucky! I have to be double careful with my regime.

Eucerin has a brilliant, extensive range of skincare to cater for all skin concerns (I am a fan), taking into account sensitive skin, and their latest is no different: meet Eucerin Elasticity + Filler.

Now, these babies are made to not only work on texture, giving skin more elasticity and less sagging, as well as plumping, helping fill out the natural structure changes that come with age and impact firmness.

Arctiin (a collagen renewal booster), Sylmariin (which helps protect collagen and elastin) and hyaluronic acid (full of hydrating plumping goodness) are present on all three products in the range and working on aiding restore elasticity and reduce deep wrinkles.

I tried the fabulously smoothing Facial Oil, which is extremely light and smells divine.

It applies amazingly, sinks in quickly and leaves no greasy residues. It also contains Argan and Lady Thistle oils, as well as vitamin E.

It is fantastic mixed with foundation – you can put one precise drop with the pipette and it does not affect it – for some extra care and protection.

The nourishing Day Care face moisturiser is light, non-comedogenic, has SPF 15 (UVA protection, is very light, absorbing quickly and making a good makeup base.

I like that the lovely muted gold packaging really reflects how my skin feels after use: radiant and smooth, as well as supported.

The Eucerin Elasticity + Filler Facial Oil costs £31 for 30ml, the Eucerin Elasticity + Filler Day Care and the Night Care, £26 each for 50ml.

At the moment, you can get 25% off selected Eucerin anti-ageing products at Boots, so hurry!

You know the drill, but I’ll say anyway: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Summer essential: that magic mist

Hands up if you’re guilty of, at some point in your life, not re-applying SPF as often as you should not to ruin your makeup? o/

Unfortunately, this is the reality: women fail to re-apply, or even apply in the first place (1 in 5 never do when in the UK), SPF because of its inconvenience. Stickiness, heaviness and interference with a flawless makeup are the main reasons.

And this is damaging our skin. I am often quite careful, and still, my analysis showed my skin is 4 years older than my actual age. Yikes!

So we get it: sunscreen is very important. Even in the city, and all year around.

As only it could be practical…. Fear not. With the sun coming out to play in London and all of us wanting to flock to the parks ray-seeking, Garnier gives us a godsend: the Ambre Solaire Sensitive Advanced Protecting and Hydrating Mist with SPF 50 that can go over makeup, no problems.

It is light and efficient. It dries instantly and not a hint of heaviness, greasiness or stickiness in sight. Its 75ml tube means that it’s perfect for the handbag.

Its cutting edge technology means, on top of the expected  UVA and UVB protection, it also has  long UVA and infrared protection, as well as anti-oxidants Baicaine and vitamin E, and hydrating vegetal glycerin.

Of course it is safe for your eyes (which should be closed when applying anyway), as well as your skin!

It also creates an anti-pollution barrier that can be reinforced throughout the day, effortlessly.

I became a huge fan instantly. It is a practical product that encourages us to use full sun protection day after day. It does not make it a burden, it is not restrictive and does not take time.

And for only £10, what is not to love? Plus, when it’s warmer, it’s a lovely breath of freshness on your face!

You can get the Garnier Ambre Solaire Sensitive Advanced Protecting and Hydrating Mist now (in time for tomorrow’s picnic) from Boots (in-store and online). No excuses

You know the drill, but I’ll say anyway: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Let it be light!

A while ago I appeared on Instagram bobbing along looking like something out of a sci-fi movie. remember that?

Well, I’ll refresh your memory. It turns out I had just started to try the revolutionary Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Mask, a device that bring the dermatologist LED therapy into your home, safely and at a fraction of the cost.

But what does it all mean? Basically, the futuristic looking mask emits therapeutic blue and red lights that penetrate intro the skin to kill the bacteria responsible for acne breakouts.

The blue light kills the bacteria while the red light reduces inflammation (is it just me our it feels should be the other way round? Hehe).

After using for about a month, I noticed my skin is calmer. Usage overlapped with my pre-menstrual period, when my breakouts are more active. Although I still have some, I feel they disappeared much quicker.

I did notice some changes pretty early on. Small breakouts seem to be zapped, larger ones subdued quicker, skin tone, texture and general condition seem to have improved. I feel it is a bit addictive.

Using it is very easy: wash your face, attach the activator device, make sure the metal pin is all the way in, pop the mask on like sunglasses and hit the button.

The daily treatment lasts 10 minutes and the mask turns off automatically. In the activator, you have a display with a count of how many treatments you have left.

And that is the catch and what people have been feeling uncertain about: the mask itself costs £59.99 and can be re-used. Now the activator, which is a necessity for it to work, costs £14.99 and deliver 30 treatments of 10 minutes, enough for a month.

Some find it is unfair that such a revolutionary treatment is made available to the masses but has an ongoing cost. As someone suffering from acne for 20 years, I will put it out there: this has always been the way.

And a lot of what is now readily available, wasn’t when I was a teenager that could not afford expensive treatments. And what was available was extremely costly.

Again, making your skin a priority might require some compromise on other areas and back up from your parents. This is how I went through countless treatments when young.

Also worth bearing in mind that this product is not suitable for severe acne, which I did have for a few periods of my life. In those cases, seeing a doctor and seeking a dermatology referral is always the way forward.

However, if you suffer from mild to moderate acne, which seem to be the case for me nowadays, this products is great and I highly recommended.

Furthermore, I’d say that after a while month I will get extra activators and not do it every day. Maybe every other or even every three, just as maintenance.

Also, the depleted activators can be recycled and Neutrogena offers information on it, so they can be disposed responsibly.

The Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Mask costs £59.99  and comes with one activator for the first month. Additional activators cost £14.99 each, and multipacks are available. The recommended initial treatment is 3 months.

You know the drill, but I’ll say anyway: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

One shape, many ways

Many a time I have raved about multi-use products. And every time I find one, well, I rave about it.

It is no secret I am a big fan of Real Techniques makeup brushes and the amazing women behind it, Sam & Nic Chapman, so it is always a pleasure to try their new creations.

The new MultiTech line is very different from all the lot. First, all the brushes have the same shape, called Point, in different sizes, from XXXS to XXXL, plus a sponge.

What really sets them apart from the brushes we know is that they are not specific for one area of the face/body or type of product. Because they all have the same shape, you use them as you find fit, and all brushes can be used with powder, liquids, creams and gels.

Now, the design is sleek: monochrome with the brand in bright pink. The bristles are ever so soft, the brushes are packed with them and the shape really works in a multitude of ways. Plus, they are comfortable to grip.

For the ones I have, L and XXXL, powder seems to be the preferred medium. But don’t be fooled. Point L is amazing with foundation, with good buffing action.

The versatility of the shape really works: the L Point, a bit more tapered, will do well for highlighting and also blusher if angled.

I will stick with powder for XXXXL Point: one sweep covers a huge area. Great for a healthy sweep of bronzer. I see this being my hero for subtle body shimmer application in the summer, especially legs! It will fare really well with shimmer cream, and for those who use it, body foundation and cover ups.

The Real Techniques MultiTech small Points come is a pretty set of four in a metal holder (£29.99 for XXXS, XXS, XS and S, all can be used on face, eyes or lips) and L (£15.99), XL (£17.99) and XXXL (£17.99), as well as the sponge (£9.99), can be brought separately.

You can get all the information on the brushes from the Real Techniques website, where you can also find the amazeballs tutorials on these brushes, and many more, from the ladies behind the brushes!

You know the drill, but I’ll say anyway: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

 

Nails returning to retro

essie-retro-revival-2017-nail-polish-review-1First of all, I feel I have to explain the month long absence: I have moved houses. Bought a flat and been like a maniac between closing the deal, moving and furnishing and now I’m starting to settle. Although I have no wifi yet, tethering to my mobile has been useful. And the means to this post!

essie-retro-revival-2017-nail-polish-review-2Second, I cannot see a better way of going to back to blogging than essie‘s retro revival 2nd edition limited collection nail polishes. The six shades embody the flawless chic vibe from the beginning of the brand in 1981 Las Vegas – in fact the caps have the original Stardust Casino gold star sign.

It is mainly nudes, pinks and reds, making it extremely feminine, perfect to let out all side of my personality – from naughty to nice!

essie-retro-revival-2017-nail-polish-review-3My favourite has to be the stunning sweet tart (oh how appropriate!) a pearlescent nude with mauve undertones. Just gorgeous.

My surprise shade was prima bella – a shimmery bubblegum pink. It looks great on.

essie-retro-revival-2017-nail-polish-review-4That doesn’t mean I am not in love with the other shades: pure chiffon is the perfect warm beige which will suit most skin tones; flawless is a delicate pink that feels quite neutral; chastity is a lively cherry blossom pink and bold beauty is a fabulous and seductive mid-century deep red. All sorts of love for this collection.

essie-retro-revival-2017-nail-polish-review-6Apart from the neutrals and a killer red, that never goes out of fashion, pinks were all over the catwalk for the new season.

The shades in this collection are so grown up and sophisticated that it totally removes pink out of the girly bedroom!essie-retro-revival-2017-nail-polish-review-5

If you want to get your claws on them, be quick: they are available until 7th March at Superdrug and 14th March at Boots and the RRP is £7.99 per bottle. Hurry!

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You know the drill, but I’ll say anyway: this post contains a mix of products I have bought myself and PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

 

Helping your hair to Grow Gorgeous

grow-gorgeous-review-1Of course how well a product works is its best feature, but really, cute packaging goes a long way. Grow Gorgeous has it all: fab products which work and smell great and the most delightful packaging.

grow-gorgeous-review-2Their new hair Strengthening Oil is a finishing product for mid and end of the hair.

In its formula, chia seed (which contains vitamin B, D & E, Omega-3, iron and antioxidants) and beet extract. These ingredients protect and nourish the strands so the growth is supported by healthy lengths.

grow-gorgeous-review-7

It is extra light so it doesn’t weigh the hair. It also smells amazing and costs £25 for 60ml.

My biggest surprise was their 11-in-1 Cleansing Conditioner. Now, I know that you’re thinking exactly what I did when I laid eyes on this product. A cleansing conditioner? What do you mean?

grow-gorgeous-review-4That and my ever suspicion of 2-in-1 products made me extremely sceptical about this product, which is enriched with abyssinica seeds and panthenol.

However, the promise of a non-stripping, growth-nurturing, hair-caring product made me go for it.

grow-gorgeous-review-6And surprised I was! Admittedly, it lacks foaming and hair doesn’t get squeaky clean on rinse but it does feel extra smooth. I was worried about, without a wash for two days, it wouldn’t be enough to break down the grease and it would clump.

To be honest, my fine hair is slightly heavier overall, but it’s not limp or with less volume than usual. Roots look and feel clean. I wouldn’t solely use this to wash my hair, but it is great when you need to wash two days in a row!

grow-gorgeous-review-3The Hair Growth Serum was designed to help you grow thicker, longer hair. It contains acetyl tetrapeptide-3, clover flower extract active complex, bio-active complex of Chinese skullcap, soy sprout, wheat sprouthyalurinoci acid and caffeine to stimulate follicles, increase scalp hydration and improve density and length.

It feels very light and fresh upon application and lovely to massage in. Personally I like applying after washing, when hair is still damp.

grow-gorgeous-review-8It dries fine and does not weight down the roots, which is very important for fine hair! I did notice a very slight improvement after a while, but hey, every little helps! It costs £30 for 60ml.

grow-gorgeous-review-5Grow Gorgeous products are on sale at the moment, with up to 50% off. Right now (28 Dec 2016), you can get the Growth Serum for £25, the Cleansing Conditioner for £14 and the Strengthening Oil for £18 on their website. Hurry!

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You know the drill, but I’ll say anyway: this post contains a mix of products I have bought myself and PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.