Beauty, evolved

Evolve Beauty is a brand I tried before and loved – their ethical and organic approach to beauty is something I really appreciate and I’m always happy to discover more from their range.

I absolutely love face masks and tried many with varied purposes, but is always delightful to stumble upon something different.

The Radiant Glow Mask (£20, 60ml) has raw cacao powder, sweet almond oil and clay and it smells like your favourite dessert. And that’s not even the best thing about it.

Evolve Beauty Radiant Glow Mask

The thick rich brown paste is quite grainy but does not feel rough on application. Apply generously and leave for 5 minutes. Because it smells so good (thank you, organic vanilla oil), I left for 10.

Removing with warm water is a delightful surprise; the mask melts and it gets so wonderfully gritty due to the coconut shell granules, providing great exfoliation. Gently scrub it away to reveal soft, clearer skin. I am in love.

Evolve Beauty favourites

Talking about scrubbing, not a lot of things bring me much joy as a good body scrub, and the Tropical Blossom Body Polish (£20, 180ml) is certainly my dream one.

This oil-based sugary scrub, which has an intoxicating fragrance thanks to Tahitian coconut monoi macerated in exotic Tahitian blossoms of gardenia and hibiscus, makes for silk soft skin that is moisturised and nourished. 

Evolve Beauty Body Polish

The sugar extracts combined with water make a milk making this an indulgent, self-caring experience. 

Last, but not least, is the Miracle Facial oil (£30, 30ml). This time of the year is when they come back into my routine as skin is begging for that extra nourishment.

Evolve Beauty Miracle Facial Oil

It contains natural retinol from organic rosehip and antioxidants from organic argan oil and organic blackseed oil, and is very light.

Applies and absorbs well and a little goes a long way, with a gorgeous organic rose otto and organic vanilla, which revitalise and soothe, on top of giving the oil a lovely fragrance.

I’ve also been using the Rainforest Rescue Blemish Serum (£20, 30ml), which is so mild and replenishing for a spot treatment.

Evolve Beauty Rainforest Rescue Blemish Serum

It contains a blend of Amazonian acai e copaiba, as well as willow bark, and I tend to apply only on affected areas and most of the time, at night, the oil and this serum are the only things on my skin.

After a few weeks using the above, plus the Daily Detox Facial Wash (£16, 100ml), with papaya, goji ad moringa peptides, my skin was brighter, less blemished and overall happy, reaping the benefits of all these natural, organic ingredients.

Their price is also very appealing and they are lovingly made in the UK. 
You can get these (and the other Evolve Beauty products I tried before) on the Evolve Beauty website

written by Dani

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

The face mask of dreams…

Not the first time I go crazy on praise for a face mask, but the thing with O’o Hawaii Birds + Roses Rose Quartz Hydrating + Firming Mask goes a bit beyond that.

Another fabulous discovery from FeelUnique and IndieBeauty Expo, this mask is true luxury in a pot. First, how it feels on the skin: amazing. This antique rose coloured mask has a creamy consistency that spreads like a dream on the face. Immediately skin is coated in a comforting layer. It is suitable for all skin types as it is so mild.

After 10 minutes on, it dries slightly, but comfortably and it easy to remove with lukewarm water. Skin feels so soft, plumped, calm and replenished. Really a bliss.

The red rose and pink geranium scent is subtle but ever present, even after you remove the mask. I can definitely smell the honey.

But let’s talk richness of natural ingredients. Sodium hyaluronate and squalane deliver plumpness and help stimulate cell growth; “snow mushrooms” helps draw moisture to the skin’ giant kelp, baobab, babassu and tamanu oils deliver antioxidant properties and sea buckthorn, rose and jasmine extracts, golden bee nectar and rose quartz crystals promote healing and circulation.

It also contains milk thistle, Hawaiian kukui nut oil, manuka honey, gotu kola and Hawaiian superfood blends coffeeberry extract, red algae (astaxanthin), strawberry guava and Hawaiian noni fruit extract.

Can you believe there is so much goodness packed in this pretty 150ml pot? Yes, it is highly concentrated, with no fillers – so we get no chemicals, no artificial colours or fragrance. It is also vegetarian, cruelty free, biodegradable and does not contain phtalates, sodium lauryl,/laureth sulfates, genetically modified ingredients, wheat, gluten, palm or soy.

I had the pleasure to briefly meet founder Holly Harding, AADP, INHC who is highly sought out holistic health and nutrition coach and food for beauty expert, well known for her mind/body transformation program, The H Lyfe Method®.

She believes beauty starts from within with a diet of nutrient rich, unprocessed and unrefined foods from nature so O’o Hawaii came about as as a way to accomplish beautiful, glowing, ageless skin through a combination of diet, supplementation and highly functional skincare.

Her love for Hawaii and an ocean lifestyle permeates the brand, especially when it comes to ingredients.

You can get the O’o Hawaii Birds + Roses Rose Quartz Hydrating + Firming Mask from FeelUnique. Price is on the dear side: £145 for 150ml, but  when you think about the pure ingredients, many organic, the sum does make sense. Also, a small amount goes a long way so you get a lot of wear out of the pot.

They have such a fabulous range (also, packaging is GORGEOUS!), I feel I have to try more! Plenty available in the UK at FeelUnique.

 

written by Dani

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

A shift on my skincare routine

Image skincare - So Many Lovely ThingsFrom time to time I like shifting my skincare routine and over a month ago I introduced five Image Skincare products to it. I had never heard of the brand, so was very excited to see that they are paraben free and have an extensive range catering for all different skin concerns.

After describing my skin, I was sent a mix of products from a few ranges, including the gorgeous the Vital C Hydrating Anti Ageing Serum, the Ageless Total Eye Lift Cream, the Prevention+ Daily Matte Moisturiser, the fabulous ClearCell Salicylic Clarifying Gel Cleanser and the Biomolecular Hydrating Recovery Masque.

I used them almost exclusively for over 4 weeks and here’s what I found…

The serum

Because I am a sucker for serums, that’s where I’m gonna start: the Vital C Hydrating Anti Ageing Serum (£72) is fluid and spreads very well on the skin, sinking quickly. I felt it gives my skin radiance; and that seem to be persisting throughout the day and not only in the morning.

Image skincare - So Many Lovely ThingsThe hydrating serum has oil-soluble Vitamin C which helps soothe the visible effects of environmentally damaged skin. Vitamins A, E and highly potent anti-oxidants help on the nourishment front, for that youthful glow.

Keep it clean!

Image skincare - So Many Lovely ThingsOne product I am in love with is the Clearcell Salicylic Clarifying Gel Cleanser (£28). Foamy and with a light scent, this cleanser makes skin feel super clean and not a tiny bit dry.

I feel it’s been a god send on these hot days where you sweat a lot at night. It contains a 5% blend of salicylic acid, neem leaf extract and granactive acne, and does a decent job of removing makeup, even eye. It has anti-inflammatory properties and gives skin a gentle exfoliation, so perfect for blemish and acne prone skin.

The eyes (always) have it

Now, eye creams are amongst my favourite type of skincare and the Ageless Total Eye Lift Creme (£48) delivers extreme hydration and nutrition to the area. I use at night as it has a richer consistency, but it applies super well and absorbs super quickly, not upsetting my sensitive eyes.

It contains a retinol-derivative glycolic blend  to help tighten the skin, chamomile, green tea and coneflower soothe and a peptide blend to reduce inflammatory processes, as well as potent antioxidants.

Image skincare - So Many Lovely ThingsDaily protection

I was looking for a multitasking face moisturiser and that’s exactly what I found on the oil-free Prevention+ Daily Matte Moisturiser (£46).

With a microsponge technology that absorb surface oils to mattify and leave skin shine-free, a blend of anti-oxidants that scavenge free-radical, and broad spectrum UVA/UVB SPF 32+, it helps reduce the damage caused by the sun and environmental exposures, so it’s the perfect shield for everyday.

As all other creams from the brand, it applies well, absorbs great and sits amazingly well under makeup. All points!

The treat

Image skincare - So Many Lovely ThingsAnd because everyone loves a sheet face mask, I also tried the Biomolecular Hydrating Recovery Mask (£9), which is laden with concentrated ultra-hydrating ingredients: amino acid Complex, Jeju volcanic oxygen water, Onsen-Sui mineral charged water, hyaluronic acid, centella asiatica extract, portulaca, oleracea extract, green tea, ginseng and beta glucan.

Skin feel plumped and hydrated after use; a real treat (and treatment!) suitable for all skin types.

Overall, a great brand discovery with products that kept my skin in check. And they have so many more exciting products I think would work for me!

You can browse their range on the Image Skincare website.

Also, I tried to take pics where the products live, my bathroom. Needless to say I won’t be doing that again, so the conclusion is the products are WAY better than my photography in this instance…

written by Dani

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

Mask it up!

How amazing is to treat yourself with a gorgeous face mask? I have to say it is one of my favourite things.

And that’s not only for my skin but also for my mental health; I do take those 15-20 minutes to unwind and create some headspace, which I usually find quite challenging.

Starskin has a fabulous range of amazing masks to cater for all your skin needs. I am very impressed at the list of ingredients on each product and how much of the serums are actually present on each mask.

Their new Diamond Mask VIP Illuminating mask (£12.50) is a luxury bio cellulose second skin mask, which feels comfortable and supple on your face.

The bio cellulose is made of naturally fermented coconut juice and is safe for all skin types, as it offers non sticky adherence.

It is nourishing, brightening, refining and enhances elasticity, thanks to its long list ingredients. Are you ready? It does feel like I am in a jewellers…diamond dust, emerald, tournaline, coconut, evening primrose, olive oils, purslane, adenosine, antarcticine, white mulberry bark and tripeptide-t. Phew.

The mask comes between two layers of protective mesh and infused with 30ml of serum. Personally, I found a bit fiddly to unravel and apply, but nothing I could not overcome in a few seconds. Once applied, the mask feels so comfortable and refreshing.

After 20 minutes, I easily removed it – it slips off effortlessly and massaged the leftover product on my face, letting it absorb naturally, which took a few minutes.

My skin felt fresh and radiant, and makeup applied later that day sat extremely well.

Before applying my mask, I cleaned my face with the Detoxing Sea Kelp Leaf cleansing foam (£20).

This rich lather is created from only a pea size amount of the product and a drop of water, applied to face and neck. It feels very cleansing on the skin and does a decent job of removing eye makeup (although I did use a proper remover afterwards).

Kelp, glacier water, clay, spirulina, green caviar, sea cucumber, hiziki, jelly fish, sea fern, peony and licorice roots come together to promote detoxing, cleansing, smoothing and balancing.

Also on my Starskin book, is the Foaming Peeling Perfection Puff (£8.50). Now, I love this things as one puff can be used up to 3 times.

Pop the foil open, add a few drops of water, squeeze the puff a couple times inside the packet and then use it to scrub the whole face for about 2-3 minutes.

I could really feel the exfoliating power of the puff. Skin was smoother and brighter after, drinking products very well!

It brings exfoliation, smoothing, skin tone and radiance improvements, as well as deep cleansing thanks to (a salad) carrot, tomato, turnip, broccoli, cabbage, olive leaf, rice, plus aloe vera, lactic acid and arginine.

Another product that made me very excited was the Plumping & Hydrating Bio-Cellulose Second Skin Lip Masks (£8.50).

Made of the same coconut bio-cellullose as the VIP mask, this was a saviour to my lips that suffer an awful lot with dryness. Also, it’s a pretty shape 🙂

5 ml of a serum formulated with sea fern, mango, flaxseed, chia seeds, coconut oil, honey, collagen, jojoba oils, hyaluronic acid, beta glucan and pomegranate infuse every lip mask for plumping, softening, smoothing and hydrating effect.

There are 2 masks per pack, which is nice!

You can get Starskin products at major retailers: think FeelUnique, Debenhams, ASOS, Selfridges, House of Fraser, LookFantastic and many more.

Protected city skin

My love affair with Nivea is long standing. I think I’ve already told how I remember my mum using the classic tins when I was a little girl!

To this day, my family in Brazil uses Nivea a lot – body moisturisers and sun cream mainly, so I thought it was great to bring the brand new Nivea Urban Skin Defence & Detox range, especially designed to protect our skin against agressor found in cities – a bit like a skin superhero.

The effects of pollution are as damaging as those of the sun and deplete skin of vitamins, while fumes as highly dehydrating.

The night and day creams are packed with anti-oxidants, including bio green tea.

The Daily Essentials Urban Skin Defence Day Cream has an SPF 20 and comes in a gel like form. It applies great, absorbing well and quickly, leaving skin fresh and super moisturised.

The Daily Essentials Urban Skin Defence Night Gel Cream is super light, which I love in a night cream. It supports cell regeneration and stimulates detox overnight.

I do love the moisturisers and been using for a month now, but must admit my fave is probably the 1 Minute Urban Detox Mask + Purify, which has white clay and magnolia extract.

Created to draw out impurities, such as dirty and oil, it is the perfect quick fix for clearer feeling skin. It also has some granules so it doubles up as entre exfoliation upon application.

I do love a bit of a mask and a scrub, and my skin feels amazing after use – clearer, smoother and fresh!

It also comes in + Moisturise and + Pore Refine, so you an tailor the routine to your needs – or mix and match!

It’s a simple and quick routine to add that extra protection to skin!

And the good news? It has just launched and the prices are fab – day and night creams at around £7.99 each (50ml) and mask £6.99 (75ml), and you can get it from major retailers nationwide.

You can read more about the range on the Nivea website.

At the moment, you can save up to 1/2 price on selected Nivea Essentials at Boots so stick up!

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

Fruit power for the skin

Oh, how much do we love affordable skincare that does its job and on top of it looks great? The answer is an awful lot.

Meet Formula 10.0.6 skincare. A traditional brand created by chemists in 1933, they have an affordable range that promotes clear, healthy young skin (but works wonders for older skin too, if you’re not specifically looking for strong anti-ageing solution).

For me, it really acts as a “maintenance” range, so it’s always by the sink. The fact if has some cute names, simple and bright packaging with effective products within certainly help.

My favourite from the selection I tried was the Pores Be Pure Skin Clarifying Mud Mask. This light mud mask feels very purifying and is quite gentle on the skin.

It contains strawberry, yarrow and rosemary. It dries but doesn’t crack on the skin, sucking impurities for a clear, less congested complexion.

Taking about clearing, the Best Face Forward Daily Foaming Cleanser is exactly that: a fabulous, gentle everyday gel foamy cleanser that leaves skin feeling super clean and fresh.

It contains oiliness reducing passion fruit, soothing and exfoliating green tea and calming chamomile.

Now, who doesn’t love an exfoliating scrub? The One Smooth Operator Pore Clearing Face Scrub purifies, gently exfoliates with pumice from volcanic rock.

It also contains purifying zinc and soothing oat. Feels comfortable to apply and leaves skin feeling soft.

Finally, the P.M. Perfector Overnight Hydrating Cream with black currant and liquorice for a long radiance, soothing and nourishing overnight skin workout. It’s light and absorbs very well.

Best of all, you can get Formula 10.0.6 products from Boots in the UK, and it’s great value for money – each one costs £8.99!

written by Dani

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.

Beauty treasure trove

I must start this post with the admission that I fell out of love with beauty boxes a while ago but the March Glossybox really made me see the excitement with these monthly beauty delights.
The March edition came brimming with some of my favourite brands and two full size products I truly love (and *may* even have graced the blog before!).
I have said before that their hand cream are second to none, so it is only fair that I start with the superb Crabtree & Evelyn Somerset Meadow Hand Therapy Cream.
Of course, the formula is the amazing one we know and the Somerset Meadow fragrance is light and fresh: a sunny summer morning in green fields in a tube. And in its 25g, it is the right size for your handbag.
Then, comes the Sleek Eye & Cheek palette which I raved about before. It has everything for the flawless transition from day to night in a compact form for the makeup bag. I got probably the more party-like of the lot, slightly more tricky to use (but with a killer gold shadow and blushers).
The other three versions are much more neutral and I have the Midsummer’s Dream one and I am seeing the pan on most shades.  Amazing pigmentation and price. What’s not to love?
Now, I am a huge fan of this works. I don’t think there is a single product they do that doesn’t work for me (because, well, this works!) and I do have the full size of the versatile in transit camera close-up primer, moisturiser and mask.
It is reportedly a must have on Mrs Beckham’s travel bag so if it is good for her, well, I am in. That aside, it is a great product; a fantastic moisturising base for makeup which I use quite often, so glad to have a travel size.
Another brand I like a lot, Schwarzkopf is present in the form of the BC Bonacure Oil Miracle Brazilnut Oil Pulp Treatment, a rich hair mask to restore shine and nourishment.
To be used twice a week for 5-10 minutes for manageable, shiny hair.
Finally, a brand that is new to me (shock, horror): Oolution. The eye love is 100% natural and 65% organic.
It contains antioxidants and it is very hydrating to help banish puffiness and dark circles, morning or night! Behaves well under makeup and you just need a little bit.
Glossybox is available through monthly subscription for £10/month (+ P&P). Always five products, at least a full size one and they always bring special editions that sell out pretty fast!
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.

This Christmas, give the gift of good skin

dermalogica-power-rescue-masque-trio-review-1Now, why not, this Christmas, give the gift of good skin?

Dermalogica has come up with some fabulous gift sets for many skin demands. Being the mask lover I am, I went for this handy Power Rescue Masque Trio, which has my favourite mask ever, Charcoal Rescue Masque (38ml), the MultiVitamin Power Recovery Masque and the Skin Hydrating Masque.

dermalogica-power-rescue-masque-trio-review-2Perfect for this time of the year and multitasking, this kit will cater for many skin concerns. You can also layer the masks – when I say this is a super muilti-tasking kit, I mean business!

Individually, the masks have very distinctive properties and are a dream to use.

Together, they deliver the perfect combination for my sensitised winter skin: purification and exfoliation for the T-zone, anti ageing moisture for the centre of my face and extra hydration for everywhere else.

Apart from the Power Rescue Masque Trio, which costs £43.25, you can also get:

  • Body Buffing Set (£15.50) – perfect gift to buff up dull skin and reveal the smooth underneath in time to see in the New Year. Contains travel size Conditioning Body Wash and  Body Hydrating Cream and an Ultimate Buffing Cloth.
  • Skin Health Heroes (£33.10) – a trio of Dermalogica’s most popular products in handy travel sizes, this kit contains Special Cleansing Gel, Multi-Active Toner and Hydrablur Primer for the healthiest skin ever.
  • Skin Brightening Duo (£53.25) – made up of two of Dermalogica’s skin heroes, the combination of a full size Daily Microfoliant® and PreCleanse work together to remove impurities, leaving clear, bright skin.
  • Skin Perfecting Set (£67.60) – illuminate skin during the day and repair at night with this complementary duo of full size Skin Perfect Primer SPF30 and Overnight Repair Serum. Firm, smooth and minimise the appearance of ageing.
  • Clear Skin Day In, Day Out (£13.70) – ideal for teen skin, this kit contains a complete day to night regimen of travel size Foaming Wash, Daytime Treatment and Overnight Treatment. Clearing the way to healthy skin from a young age.

Visit the Dermalogica website to find out more and purchase the gift sets. You can also get it fromthe Dermalogica shops, counters and many retailers, on and off line, across the country.

Be quick and get your hands on them before they sell out!

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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.

Love for your body and mind: find your Inner Strength

aromatherapy-associates-inner-strength-review - 2In modern society we many times concentrate on the physical and end up forgetting about our minds.

Aromatherapy Associates is here to help us to take some time to look after our skin as well as our minds, and maybe indulge a little bit on their fabulous products.

Inner Strength is an all over mind and body range that counts with the usual fabulous bath and shower oils, but also skincare to help rebuild our natural strength and protect our skin from the effects of environmental and emotional stress, designed for sensitive skin.

It contains camomile essential oil, calming for the mind and soothing of the skin, plant-based probiotics to rebuild and protect skin’s natural defence, cotton thistle flower, which restores skin layers and helps the regenerative process and arnica flower, a great anti inflammatory.

aromatherapy-associates-inner-strength-review - 1The Inner Strength Skin Recovery Moisturiser is a protective moisturiser that calms an soothes, helps build the skin protective barrier and helps restore the skin healthy aspect.

The moisturiser is light, applies and absorbs well and behaves under makeup. The scent is pleasant and reassuring.

It is perfect combined with the Soothing Facial Oil, which feels very luscious and replenishing on the skin, at night.

The Inner Strength Soothing Repair Mask is a bliss to use. I’m a big facial mask fan and this feels like a thicker cream.

The scent is reassuring, slightly more intense than the moisturiser; I like rubbing the Inner Strength Bath and Shower oil on my hands, then on my chest to inhale, while using the mask before the shower.

aromatherapy-associates-inner-strength-review - 3Skin, as well as the mind, feels revitalised. It’s moisturising, plumping, strengthening and soothing.

This mask contains, sodium hyaluronate from soy, camomile as plant based probiotics.

The full range, already available to buy contains, apart from the Skin Recovery Moisturiser and the Soothing Repair Mask, the Soothing Cleansing Balm, Soothing Serum and Soothing Facial Oil, which joined the already existent Inner Strength Body Oil, Bath & Shower Oil and Candle, which you can buy here.

And to see how much I love these guys, you can read my Aromatherapy Associates Clear Mind Bath and Shower Oil.

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This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

 

Detox and brighten: dermalogica charcoal masque to the rescue!

dermalogica-charcoal-rescue-masque-review - 1

In skincare, there is nothing quite satisfying like a good face mask.

The new dermalogica charcoal rescue masque ticks all the boxes in the satisfaction list: it applies well, you feel working, upon washing acts as a gentle exfoliant and the best part: it sets! Ok, maybe not the best but a pretty satisfying one.

dermalogica-charcoal-rescue-masque-review - 1

Its star ingredient is the activated Binchotan white charcoal, from Japan, made with Ubame oak using ancient methods resulting in ultra high porosity charcoal, which means much superior (more than 1,000 times its weight) impurities absorption.

As it’s a multitasking mask, it also contains 5% sulphur which removes dulling cells, combats breakouts and revitalises, volcanic ash, sea silt, bamboo stem extract, phytic, lactic and mandelic acids for exfoliation, pantenyl and naringenin, both anti-inflammatories and Chilean wild mint, which is refreshing but also acts as a temporary pore minimiser.

dermalogica-charcoal-rescue-masque-review - 2

I have to say, its grey colour is great fun to use (I am silly like that), even though it sets very hard, it feels comfortable while on the skin and washes off easier than I thought.

Because of its particles, you can give your skin a gentle exfoliating massage while removing it; it has a good grit to it without being too abrasive.

Skin feels super soft, brighter and healthier from the first use.

Dermalogica has many fantastic face masks and now with the multi-masking beauty trend, it is very easy to find a combination right for you.

You can have a consultation with the dermalogica specialists at their concessions in gorgeous places like Liberty, and come out with a face mask (and why not full skincare regime) which is right for your skin conditions and concerns.

The dermalogica charcoal rescue masque costs £38 launched exclusively at Liberty last month but is now available online and at dermalogica concessions nationwide.

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This post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.