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.

A facial hero

I first came across Voya last year, at Organic Beauty Week. In the goodie bag, came a body oil I used to the very last drop, but somehow failed to post about.

Fast forward a year and there they are at Organic Beauty and Wellness Week 2017 and in the bag, the gorgeous My Little Hero Facial Serum.

This organic seaweed face serum is made of a blend of organic oils to boost and protect skin.

Full of antioxidants, it nourishes and improves radiance. I cannot stress enough that oils are suitable to most skins, even the more troublesome ones, like mine.

Oils from sunflower, camelina, coriander, grape, pumpkin, pomegranate and jojoba seed, wheatgerm, geranium, lavender, ylang ylang, palmarosa,  rosehip, vetivert root, bergamot, clove, almond, and avocado are joined by seaweed, green algae, vanilla extracts to form this extremely rich 98% organic oil that sinks deep and very well into the skin.

Because it’s so rich, my skin can only take it at night, and sometimes it’s all it needs. Skin wakes up plump and happy.

Admittedly, it is on the expensive side at £53 for 30ml but we are talking high quality organic skincare that goes a long way.

On the fabulous Angelicus Serratus Nourishing Body Oil (£34 for 100ml) which I used up a while ago, only great notes: very rich but quickly absorbed, perfect for after the shower, leaving skin soft and nourished for ages.

It contains a very pleasant and distinctive smell with citrus and the seaweeds focus and angelicus serratus, which work on elasticity, suppleness and cleansing.

A real delight to apply all over the body, it is full of antioxidant rosehip, sunflower and evening primrose oils, vitamin E, revitalizing lime and rejuvenating mandarin. I was really sad to see the empty bottle, I tell you!

You can get the My Little Hero Facial Serum and the Angelicus Serratus Nourishing Body Oil from the Voya website. Products and treatments can be found at 37 luxury locations, including hotels, worldwide like the Mandarin Oriental in London and the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah in Dubai, for example. 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 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.

Well oiled up

Oil on my face. That is something I never thought I’d put on deliberately. Having had problematic, blemish  skin all my life, I always struggled with the oiliness of my dry skin.

Three years ago, facial oils changed my life. And my skin. For the first time, I felt radiance coming from my acne-treatment-battered skin. And oh, boy, did I get addicted!

And now, I cannot live my life without it. For those that like me ran away from facial oils, give it a go. The reasoning behind it is that if you provide oils to the skin, it won’t produce, or produce much less of it.

On top of it, oils carry a great concentration of raw nutrients, nourishing the skin and working mainly on texture and condition.

Some nights, all I put on is face oil. I give it a lovely uplifting circular massage to my face and neck, breathe in the natural aromas and off to bed I go!

The this works stress check face oil is a bliss, I’ve been loving it recently. On top of its redness relief, calming and hydrating properties, thanks to its botanical oils, vitamin C, E and omega 3, it has the most calming neroli, patchouli, lavender, vetivert and camomile fragrance. A treat for face and mind.

Caudalie has just launched a fab facial oil, the Vine[Active] Overnight Detox Oil, perfect for city skins which are exposed to pollution and free radicals.

It is 100% natural and works towards detoxifying and regenerating stressed skin. Full review coming soon!

And while on the natural subject, other pure blend oils such as Dr Jackson’s everyday oil and the Skin & Tonic London Naked Beauty oil, a bit richer, are perfect for overnight.

I feel they work their magic getting deep in the skin, healing and supporting the skin regenerating process.

I love that Dr Jackson’s everyday oil also comes in a handy roll on, perfect for travelling, and perfect to carry on the plane. Definitely one to invest on for the holiday season, for its portability and to help sun exposed skin heal!

Super light oils like the Body Shop Oils of Life facial oil, the Eucerin Facial oil and the dermalogica phyto replenish oil are perfect to add to the foundation for extra hydration and glow.

For more specific needs, the GOSH Primer Oil Essence doubles up as a night oil that preps the skin for the next day and the Indemne Gimme Clear! oil is a helping hand for blemish prone skins.

Of course, I cannot leave out the first oil I ever put on my face: balance me radiance face oil. On the “natural, richer” category, this one really changed my skin and I owe it my absolute love (ok, obsession) with facial oils.

The market is brimming with great products, for all budgets. It is a great time for facial oils. And my skin is grateful!

What about you? Have you tried facial oils? How do they feel on your skin? Or are you like me in the beginning, scared of using them?

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 Real Beauty

This year, Dove is celebrating 60 years. A lot of those have been spent, apart from caring for our skin, supporting a healthy body image: all shapes and sizes hold #RealBeauty.

We all have our curves, edges and sizes that makes us one of a kind, unique, a very limited edition. So Dove gave their classic body wash a little makeover in these six limited edition 250ml bottles, in different shapes and sizes to celebrate diversity.

Needless to say, I was so glad to receive the bottles for what they remind me of: the sometimes very hard task to love myself as I am.

And it seems I am succeeding a bit when I am thanked for being an “inspirational woman (…) helping advance the real beauty debate; using influence to help women embrace their own individuality as a source of confidence”.

I try that, not only through the way I do love my body (most of the times!) and am not scared to show my individuality out there. Of course I do also look up to other women that make me strong in my quest!

I think recently the Instagram post below says a lot about it.

The body wash is creamy and has a gentle formulation containing NutriumMoisture which delivers natural nutrients, nourishes deep and helps maintain the moisture barrier for soft, comfortable and clean skin.

The Dove Deeply Nourishing Body Wash is widely available (RRP £2.55) and I personally love the smell of the classic!

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.