Surviving January (and let’s face it, February)

The party well and truly is over. When the summer comes to an end (and trust me, we stretch the feeling to the bitter end), we all start looking forward to the season to be jolly.

The celebrations usually start in early December, but with the shops putting the decorations up in mid-November, it is easy to get carried away by the festive spirit, especially when you love Christmas, like me. And it’s all fun and games.

We eat, we drink, we are merry. Too merry. Then January hits. Even worse, mid-January, when you had time to take a long, hard look at yourself… No bank holidays for a long stretch, dark, dark and cold days, we are poor from all the crimbo expenditure and our bodies are feeling the worse for wear after all the eating and drinking. It is truly dreadful.

So how do I plan to survive? By looking after my mind and body, that is.

The body works

I’ll reach out for the fake tan. I’ve been loving the Fake Bake Five Minute Mouse tan as I feel mega lazy. It’s quick, transfer free, little smell and develops into a gorgeous tan that lasts up to a week (I top up every 4-5 days).

Before bed, I lather myself with the Nivea Rich Nourishing 48h intensive moisturising care, which is perfect to treat your skin, battered by the cold and heating, overnight. It’s a classic that has been reformulated recently and it’s super creamy, delivering up to 48-hour hydration, thanks to the Nivea Deep Moisture Serum and almond oil.

And smells Nivea-comforting. It is very rich, but absorbs well. Next day, I can feel it “coming out as a shower”. This is serious moisturising.

I am a huge fan of pillow sprays and as much as they are for the body, they are for the mind. I am using the Feather & Down pillow spray, together with their shower cream and body oil before going to bed.

I absolutely love the fragrance and if you are not too keen on lavender, this one is definitely for you – so calming, relaxing and absolutely delightful.

Going back to fitness has been on my list for over six months, after being plagued with injuries. I am at a point I can ease myself into my usual routine, a step at a time.

I have just had a proper week of working out – four times, and closer to my old routine, including aerial pilates, ballet barre, an inversion class and circus conditioning. My injury seems to be ok with it and as long as I take it really slowly, it feels promising.

My diet will receive the attention it deserves. No, I am not going radical, but will stick for a while to the ketogenic diet my MSK specialist doctor recommended, to diminish inflammation, as well as taking good supplements like probiotics and immune system support, which worked a treat for me this year.

That also includes cutting down alcohol (dramatically? we’ll see about that), in quantity but mainly type as some are more irritable to my body than others.

I will also stick to my Zenii Radiance and Skin Health supplements as they do work a treat to fight dullness.

Minding the gap

My mental health will be a huge focus this year, so I’m starting strong in January to set myself up for the year. I will practice mindfulness, work to prevent thoughts from becoming compulsive and my actions turning obsessive and spiralling out of control.

Planning my budget and organising my life in general has always been a struggle, so I am aiming to put a realistic plan together. That should enable me from planning for the travels and hobbies I want to squeeze in 2018.

Attention will be focused on what matters; people who matter. Friends who are supportive, reliable and positive. Of course, no one is like that all the time, but it’s the give and take balance that is really important here. I will not be a sole giver. Unreliable friends make me anxious and why would I want to be around people show are not supportive? Exactly.

Creating rituals is important for me. I must go back to “face mask Wednesdays”, “mani Thursdays”, or “deep stretch Mondays”. You get the drift – something that is great for body and mind. Two birds and all that.

And the blog, which has saved me through so much, will continue to be my haven and I will (and already have been) paying more attention to it,

How are you planning to survive during these dark months?

written by Dani

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.

 

 

 

Gimme vitamin…C

I’m no stranger to the Nivea Q10 range; a while back I was introduced to the antioxidant properties of Q10, which is a co-enzyme present in our skin.

Now Nivea has just boosted these properties with amazing vitamin C, also known for its antioxidant properties and to deliver radiance and energy to the skin.

The Q10plusC Anti-Wrinkle + Energy Eye Treatment (£10.99) is my favourite – you know I love an eye product.

It’s light and super smooth, I find perfect for the day as it keeps the area moisturised and bright, but also great for the night as it is not heavy and works wonder de-puffing and refreshing dull and tired skin.

The Q10plusC Anti-Wrinkle + Energy Skin Sleep Cream (£10.99) is a delight. It is a very fluid cream that glides and sinks so well in the skin.

It feels so light but works wonders: skin wakes up refreshed, rested and plump.

Last, but not least, the Q10plusC Anti-Wrinkle + Energy Day Cream with SPF 15 (£10.99).

Of course, any sun protection is always welcome and on top of it you have fantastic skin protecting antioxidants.

It has a firm consistency but spreads smoothly and behaves extremely well under makeup.  I don’t know if it’s me but it feels like it creates a good, non-greasy and even base for foundation.

This range went straight to my bedside table (ok, not a bedside table, but the packed everyday skincare drawer more like) and I’ve been using very regularly since putting to the test.

Oh, and the smell on the face products is rather nice; slightly reminiscent of the classic Nivea, but fresher and not overpowering. I love it!

You can check them out on the Nivea website and you can get them from major retailers, such as Superdrug and Boots.

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.

Celebrating timeless fashion with Nivea deodorant

How can your deodorant affect your style? Well, nothing worse than white marks in your favourite black dress to make you wish the earth would swallow you!

The Nivea Invisible for Black & White deodorant, on top of having white mark protection for black clothes, also helps prevent those horrible yellow stains on white garments.

Of course it also counts with the 48 hour anti-perspirant protection, cares for the skin and is also gentle, as it is dermatologically tested and alcohol-free. I also like the bottle has an “open-close” twist top and the classic Nivea smell is present in a softer version.

And the classic bottle now has had a stylish makeover by Matthew Williamson and enchanting design is full of gorgeous patterns, including pretty butterflies, complimenting the brand colours.

Matthew Williamson, who is passionate about designing timeless pieces, says it is important that clothes make women feel better about themselves and that he’s teamed up with Nivea “to celebrate these timeless fashion favourites that make women feel great while offering them a product that will help look after those clothes they love for the long haul.”

This Limited Edition Nivea Invisible Black & White by Matthew Williamson fashion bottle hits the shelves on the 28 August.

The loved and trusted Nivea Black & White formula, all dressed up, costs £3.29 (RRP for 250ml) and you can get it from major retailers like Boots and Superdrug.

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.

Handy and affordable sunscreens to take anywhere

SPF is very important in our lives. Regardless of being gloomy in London or scorching in the Caribbean, winter or summer, we know sun protection should always be in our minds – and most importantly, in our skins!

It is great to find sunscreens that take little space and you can take away with you on a daily basis, for all those important and often neglected top ups.

As the sun is gracing my balcony today, I felt inspired to put together a small selection of sun creams I have been wearing that offer a great protection and can be carried around for all day long wear. And they are pretty affordable too!

I fell in love with the Bioderma Photoderm Max Aquafluide SPF 50+ during my last holiday. What a delight to apply; its fluid water-like texture is great. It dries quickly and matte, is water resistant and behaves very well under makeup.

Plus, apart from high UVA/UVB protection, it has the patented Cellular Bioprotection which activates the skin’s natural defences at cellular levels, protecting our cells and combating premature skin ageing.

And probably the best thing? Extremely well priced at around £13 for 40ml.

Moving on to one from my favourite sunscreen brands, very affordable and easy to find, the Nivea Sun Caring Roll-on SPF 30 is super easy to apply, it is water resistant, protects agains UVA and UVB rays and offers long lasting moisturisation too.

The formula is great, dries quickly and is non-sticky, the smell so familiar and lovely, and the price is also extremely friendly at around £7 for 50ml.

I raved soooo much about the Garnier Ambre Solaire Sensitive Advanced Protecting and Hydrating Face Mist SPF 50 when it launched and after almost using it all since, I will maintain my review: it is the most practical SPF around and perfect for us city folks as it can be applied on top of makeup.

For me, that is priceless but you can get it for an affordable £10. And I just found for £6 at Boots. Going to stock up.

Finally, a  little gem from Eucerin, the Tinted Sun Creme SPF 50+. Ideal for those who wear little or no makeup but want a natural flash of colour, it is oil-free, non-comedogenic with UVA and UVB protection. It costs £16 for 50ml.

These are the little heroes keeping me safe all year round!

What are you favourite “portable and affordable” SPF?

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.

More shower time bliss

Oh, shower products. 2017 is seeing a fab influx of great shower products: inventive formulations, better skincare and different textures. I love it.

Nivea, another brand very close to my heart, has some amazing brand new products to elevate the shower bliss: the Nivea Care Shower Milk Mousse (RRP £2.99) and the Nivea Shower Creme & Oil Pearls (RRP £2.39).

The Shower Silk Mousse contains silk extract, essential oils plus almond oil and is amazingly foamy. The soft lather applies heavenly on the skin, cleansing and leaving it extra soft.

It comes in three gorgeous fragrances: Creme Care, Creme Soft and Creme Smooth, and I love it has a scratch and sniff sticker on the lid, so you know what it smells without needing to open it.

The Shower Creme & Oil Pearls is a rich cream with Argan oil and vitamin E enriched oil golden pearls, providing intensive skincare and moisturisation.

Comes in Cherry Blossom, Ylan Ylang and Lotus, fragrances to relax you mind while looking after you body, for a luxurious showering experience at home.

It does lather very little as it is a créme. It does, however, feel amazing, during and after use.

You can also see the golden pearls that burst their goodness as soon as you massage into the skin. The fragrances really provide a bit of oomph.

Both the Nivea Shower Creme & Oil Pearls and the Shower Silk Mousse and their lovely variations are available from retailers nationwide.

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.

Weather changes: what about my skin?

winter_skincare_somanylovelythings - 1My skin is, at the best of days, problematic. After suffering from acne most of my life, I really need to be careful with how I approach skincare.

Season changes can play havoc with it if I don’t start adapting my routine at the first signs of change.

Whereas spring and summer are gentler and require less care in general, this time of the year can be quite challenging for me, and I have already started to adapt my ways.

winter_skincare_somanylovelythings - 2Immediately, the colder air seems to suck out the moisture of my skin. Although I have acne, my skin can get quite dry and dehydrated.

A common mistake for acneic skin sufferers is to think oily skin doesn’t need moisture. I myself did that for a long time. Sebum and hydration are two different thing, so make sure you are hydrating and nourishing oily skin.

At the same time, I cannot use very rich creams on my face. In the summer, I can’t even contemplate; in the winter, I can take a bit more richness, but not a lot.

I change to a gentler face wash/cleanser, such as S5 Clarity Cleanser (ever so gentle) and Trilogy Balancing Gel Cleanser.

In terms of toners, I tend to swap for gentler one, such as the Dermalogica Multi Active Toner every other day, then rotate my favourites Clinique Anti-Blemish Clarifying Lotion and Pixi Glow Tonic.

winter_skincare_somanylovelythings - 7

A pre-cleanse, when wearing heavy make up, also helps making the whole process less abrasive. The Dermalogica Precleanse is fabulous, I cannot recommend enough.

During the day, I’ve been starting with The Body Shop Essence Lotion and follow with a moisturiser with SPF, which can be Caudalie Polyphenol C15, Balance Me Natural Protection Moisturiser, Dermalogica Sheer Tint or Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance (the last two are tinted).

Other times I use Clinique Anti-Blemish Solution Clearing Moisturiser or thisworks energy bank sun flash or light time skin plumper with a sunscreen underneath, such as the fabulous Eucerin Mattifying Sun fluid.

winter_skincare_somanylovelythings - 8At night, I usually apply either a good moisturiser or light night cream. Favourites at the moment include the S5 Balance Fluid, The Body Shop Oils of Life Intensely Revitalising Gel and Cream, Liz Earle Superskin Face Serum (which is a fabulous thicker serum).

Then I complement with a serum and/or oil, depending on how parched my skin feels. Favourites include Balance Me Radiance Oil, Body Shop Oils of Life Intensely revitalising Facial Oil, Caudalie Vinoperfect (to help me get rid of some sun/hormonal dark spots that usually appear on my face in the summer), Jurlique Rose Moisture Plus, S5 Purity Serum.

winter_skincare_somanylovelythings - 9I never thought oils would be suitable for my skin, having acne and all, but since I started, with Balance Me Radiance oil, I noticed a great improvement.

The theory is that once you are already giving your skin oil, it doesn’t need to produce more. It did work for me and after a while I could, for the first time in years, see radiance on my skin.

All that in conjunction with the fabulous Dermalogica Skin Hydrating Booster, which is great for face and eyes, giving my skin that extra hydration, day or night.

winter_skincare_somanylovelythings - 4I feel that high on my cheekbones and around the eyes,my skin get extra dry, so I use eye creams in the morning and evening. Favourites include Dermalogica Intensive Eye Repair, S5 Renew Eye Cream and Joan Collins Superlift eye serum, not to forget some coconut oil from time to time.

Mists play a huge part in my winter routine. Central heating is not great for skin so I keep mine in check with a great facial spray.

I love the Jurlique Rose Mist, Pixi Glow Mist and Liz Earle Instant Boost Skin Tonic Spritz.

winter_skincare_somanylovelythings - 6My lips suffer all year round and tend to dry, flake and chap quite easily. Unlucky for me, they are also quite “fussy” in regards to what works, and Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream and Nivea Lip Butter are the only things that will prevent and treat them well.

As the season evolves and weather fluctuates, I adjust the above accordingly. I am always trying different combinations: some nights I might use oil, serum and moisturiser; some days, only serum, depending on how my skin feels and looks.

The important thing for me is is to keep it comfortable, looking healthy and most importantly, breakout free as much as possible.

What kind of changes do you make to your skincare routine for the new seasons? Does your skin suffer with it?

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This post contains a mix of press samples and products I bought myself. Refer to links for full reviews and info.

Review: Nivea Sun Protect & Bronze Face Sun Cream

nivea_sun protect & bronze face sun cream

It shouldn’t really be this way, but at this time of the year people usually start thinking more about sun protection – and more importantly, acting on it.
I love sunbathing, but my face is always totally protected throughout the year, and Nivea Sun offers a helping hand for the summer, giving us the best of both worlds – protection and tanning in one product: Nivea Sun Protect & Bronze Face Sun Cream.

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Christmas beauty stocking fillers under £10

stockingfillers

This year I am feeling super Christmassy, I am not sure why, but I want to have my tree up NOW. No joke.

With so many lovely options out there, I decided to handpick a few affordable one to pack  that stocking up the the brim with beautiful and useful gifts.

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Long haul flight beauty routine

my travel beauty bag

As some of you might know, I am from Brazil. That means that at least once a year I face a long haul flight to see my family. Add that a passion for travelling and you will probably see me for seven hours or more on board a plane at least twice a year.

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