Best of British Look Fantastic Beauty Box

I finally did it. I subscribed to a beauty box! If you follow me or in fact I follow you, you’ve probably seen me comment about desperately wanting to try out a beauty box but being unsure whether to. I was ordering another product from Look Fantastic, and the subscription box popped up just as I was about to check out, so I went for it! Yes, I’m your typical easy sales customer.

I have to say, I am so glad I did because I really was like a child on Christmas when it arrived. The box itself firstly is beautiful and what’s inside… well that’s just as beautiful! Not only did it come with six miniature products to test out (eek), it also came with a September issue of Elle (which annoyingly I’d bought that day…). It also comes with a short booklet giving you a little more information about the products included as well as some other interesting beauty bits. I opted for the 12 month subscription, and honestly, a year of receiving these little boxes of heaven really is going to make me one happy customer.

So what’s inside….

  • Ren Flash Defence Anti-Pollution Mist – the beauty world is buzzing over the word ‘anti-pollution’ so I’m really excited to try out a product that is aimed at protecting your skin from the stress of harsh environments. I work on one of the most congested streets in London so I will really put this to the test!
  • Renu Lip and Eye Active Lift – As you may know, I love a good eye cream so throw one my way and I’m yours. I haven’t used this brand before so I’m intrigued to see how I get on with it.
  • Bloom and Blossom Rejuvenating Facial Spritz – I have two 8 hour flights coming up soon and I know this will be amazing at hydrating my skin whilst helping to keep me look slightly more normal. It’s also perfect timing for the (supposed) heat wave we’ll be having here in the UK!
  • Percy & Reed Wonder Balm – My prayers have been answered. After a week in the sun the ends of my hair are feeling very sorry for themselves, so a treatment like this is sure to work wonders!
  • Balance Me Congested Skin Serum – I recently tried a serum that my skin hasn’t taken to too well, so although I’m nervous, it will be interesting to see how I get on with this…
  • Bee Good Vanilla and Honey Lip Balm – I can’t count how many lip balms I own on about five pairs of hands, so I’m giddy to try one I don’t already own!

As I only received this today I haven’t had time to properly test and trial these products, but I will most certainly keep you up to date with them in future posts.

Would love to hear recommendations of any other great beauty boxes. But please be gentle. I think I’m addicted….

x

 

The Power of Multi Masking 

 
Have you guys tried multi masking before? I always feel like I’m giving my skin a mini facial by mixing my lotions and potions (not literally) to find a method that suits me. Multi masking really is such a great way to give your skin a deeply tailored treatment. It’s pretty simple – you use a treatment per area of your skin dependant on your needs (it’s difficult to tell but I’ve used a different product on my chin to the rest of my face on the picture above). It’s fantastic if you have combination skin as you can focus in on specific areas of concern with a particular product without the worry of irritating a more sensitive area.

In my case, my chin is definitely the more oily part of my skin, and is particularly hormonal at the moment, so I’ve used my favourite Kiehls clay masque (review here) to tackle that oiliness. The rest of my skin does not need such an intense masque, so I’ve used Biore pore strips on my nose to really help lift and remove any lurking residue; and then finally, I’ve used the Clarins Pure and Radiant Mask with pink clay as again I didn’t need something as heavy as the Kiehls masque, but I still wanted something to really help brighten my forehead and cheek areas. Plus I didn’t want them to feel left out!

I leave all on for the same time and then cleanse off using warm water (after peeling the nose strip off). I then finish with my moisturiser and eye cream and am left with super smooth skin that hasn’t been irritated in certain parts. I do still love slathering my face in the same treatment for a quick fix; however, if your skin is feeling particularly sensitive or you are looking for a great way to tackle lots of skin concerns at the same time, I would really recommend this technique!

Thanks for reading 🙂

The Glamour Beauty Festival 

 
Yesterday I headed to what can only be described as a paradise. The Glamour Beauty Festival. The event runs all weekend, with brands from Rimmel to Liz Earle there with their own section offering amazing free treatments as well as great advice (I particularly enjoyed seeing how to really conceal my black under eye bags that you may have heard me moan about before…)

 The festival was held at the Saatchi Gallery, which admittedly I’d never been to (but definitely will be going back), where the aroma of beauty obsessives filled the gallery. There were four main sections; hair, make up, skin care and nails, where brands were set up ready to pamper and preen to perfection! I tried to get around as many as possible, but there was so much choice I just couldn’t!

 


 

In the makeup section I first headed to Laura Mercier where an artist showed me how to conceal my under eyes as well as any other areas of concern. I bought this little pot of magic, which amazingly concealed my sins from my work drinks the night before.

 I then headed to the Nars counter where I was shown how to properly highlight, contour and apply blush…


They developed this exclusive colour called Goule for the event which I absolutely loved, and so felt it was rude not to buy it….

After that, I headed to the skincare section. Balance Me were offering an amazing skin assessment service. I put my head into this box with curtains where there was a blue UV-type light with a small mirror.


The specialist then looked in from the other side to assess my skin. I had this done years ago before I underwent treatment for blemishes, so it really was amazing to see the difference it had made to my skin! The only issue she could see, which she said everyone would have, is the dehydration on my under eyes *grabs for water*. They had a pick and mix type shop, where 3 sample sized products were £10, so I bought….

I then headed over to Elizabeth Arden, where I had this amazing treatment which I sadly can’t remember or find the name of (if you can help please let me know!). It essentially looked like a mini spray tan applicator, which she filled with vitamins and sprayed over my skin. She then went back over when there was purely air pressure to massage the product in. It was supposed to be a ‘Madonna effect’, which for the rest of the day, my skin really did glow. I have to also say that on a slight hangover, this was the most amazing treatment! It was so soothing and refreshing that I asked her to do it again! She said they offer a 15 minute treatment for £15, so I would definitely pay for another.

They were the only treatments I had as the queues were fairly long, but I loved spending time just mooching around looking at products.

 

 

As part of the ticket you could also choose a talk to attend. I went to one where Jo Malone, Liz Earle and Thea Green (founder of Nails Inc) were talking about how they started and grew their businesses. It was so interesting and actually really empowering to hear about their journeys. Also, Liz’s skin was literally glowing from around 5 metres away, so I am SO excited to try the hot cloth cleanse and polish. Yes I finally have it!

Now for the best part, another perk of your ticket was that you received a goody bag full of amazing products (a lot full sized!). These are the fab things I received….

So stay posted as I’ll be posting a few product reviews of the great products I discovered at the event!

Would love to hear if anyone else was there and what they tried!

Thanks for reading 🙂

My Top 4 Hand Creams

 

With this cold weather that doesn’t seem to be leaving us alone, my hands are constantly screaming out for some TLC. I always try to take really good care of my hands because they can show the first signs of aging (thanks to sun exposure), and I’m desperately trying to nurse my nails back to health after shellac has ruined them (completely my fault as I peeled the varnish off instead of getting them properly removed….oops). So, it’s fair to say I’ve road tested a few hand creams along the years, and after whittling down my favourite few, I wanted to share them all with you!

These all range in price, so if you’re looking to try a new hand cream then hopefully this will help you to find a product to suit your budget!

 

L’OCCITANE Shea Butter Hand Cream, £19.00

 I can’t remember the first time I tried this, but it’s been a staple in my make up drawer for years. It’s so nourishing, smells amazing and leaves a great smooth finish. The cream is enriched with 20% shea butter and honey, almond extracts and coconut oil are blended with aromas of jasmine and ylang-ylang essences to not only leaving your hands smelling delicious, but also to ensure that this caring cream is extremely effective. It has a really rich texture to it which helps to leave your hands super smooth, and really penetrates the skin to leave hands nourished. It weirdly reminds me of the texture of Philadelphia spreadable cheese, but obviously smells a lot nicer! Also, because of the rich texture you’re not left with any oily traces, which I absolutely love about this product! Whenever I apply this product I can’t help but touch my hands, which I think says it all!

Rating: 5/5

 

 

Clarins Hand and Nail Treatment Cream, £15.00

 This is another staple product in my household thanks to its instantly nourishing properties. It’s an emollient-rich (seeks to really moisturise) cream that contains soothing sesame oil and fortifying Japense mulberry, which gives it a luxuriously rich texture, and lovely smell! This cream absorbs in so nicely and doesn’t leave any oiliness, which is great! It also really helps to condition cuticles to cuticles to make your nails healthier and stronger. If you’re looking for something to really treat your hands, and help maintain healthy cuticles, this is the perfect product!

Rating: 4.5/5 (The only reason I didn’t give this is 5 is because I love the L’OCCITANE one so much!)

 

 

Soap & Glory Hand Food, I’ve pictured the smaller size, but the larger is £5.50

 I love Soap & Glory products so I knew I would fall in love with their hand cream. First, the texture is quite similar to the L’OCCITANE cream as it’s quick thick so it does give a really intense moisturising effect. As you can imagine this smells gorgeous because of the shea butter, macadamia oil and marshmallow (mmmm) it contains. It absorbs really well into the skin and you only need to apply a small amount to cover both hands.

Rating: 4/5

 

Vaseline Healthy Hands & Healthy Nails, £3.99

I picked this up when I was out and about in the freezing cold and my hands were in desperate need of some moisture. This has a lovely smell to it, and definitely did succeed in moisturising my hands. It has keratin and has a three-layer level of moisture so it really acts to delve deep and give intense nourishment. It does also help to soften your cuticles and make the area appear healthier. The texture is lighter and almost runny compared to the other hand creams, which I don’t like as much; as well as this it does leave a slight oily residue. My only other issue with is the product is that is stung my skin when it was super dry and I applied it. I do have very sensitive skin and I know that it’s quite common for really dry hands to react to certain products, but I definitely wouldn’t recommend this for really sensitive skin!

 Rating: 3/5

Depending on your skin type, all of these creams have great properties that all act to nourish and soothe your hard working hands. However, if I had to select my favourite products based on a budget buy and a splurge buy,  they are…

Best Budget Buy: Soap & Glory

Best Splurge Buy: L’OCCITANE Shea Butter Hand Cream

 

 

Thanks for reading 🙂

The One Product You Need For Your Nails – Sally Hansen Advanced Hard As Nails

 

If you regularly follow my posts, I’m sure you will recognise this product. I haven’t actually posted specifically about how great this strengthening nail varnish is so I thought I would!

I can’t remember the first time I used this product, which is a testament to how much I love it, as it’s been a staple item in my beauty cupboard for years and years. I always use this as a base coat under colour, and generally use it as a top coat to give my nails extra strength. As a treatment, it’s also fantastic and has really helped to strengthen my weak, splitting nails. I apply one coat every other day for around a week, and then remove and repeat. I definitely don’t do this as much as I should, but even every so often makes a huge difference in the condition of my nails, and the appearance of my hands!

Now for the technical ‘stuff’…

The nylon formula fortifies nails and helps prevent chipping, splitting and peeling; as well as the retinol and copper peptide formula which helps to hydrate parched nails. The omega 3 and soy formula also helps diminish the look of ridges!

At £4.75 a bottle you really can’t go wrong with this strengthening nail varnish!! There is a clear and natural colour available in this particular varnish. I use the natural shade, as I find it adds a pretty glaze to my nails when I’m not wearing anything else! Would love to hear of any other treatments you’ve tried.

X

Cheat Your Way To Perfect Nails! 

 

If there’s one thing I’ve always struggled with it’s maintaining strong nails. But, what I discovered a few years ago is the importance of maintaining good cuticle health to ensure your nails are as happy as can be!

I was recommended this Jessica Phenomen Oil for my cuticles by a beauty therapist, and it is the most amazing thing!! She told me that if I use one thing on my nails, make it this, as it’s so strengthening.

It firstly smells absolutely divine (I wish I there was a smell cam). And even better, this little pot goes such a long way!! I’ve had this for a good year now and it still looks untouched. I was told to use a small amount of this everyday before bed, but it’s more like once or twice a week depending on when I remember! But, this still is a good amount for leaving your cuticles feeling nourished. I basically take the applicator and dab a small amount on each cuticle then gently rub in. I also use the Clarins Hand and Nail Treatment to make sure my hands also feel super moisturised. The combination of the two products tricks my hands into thinking they’ve spent a day at a spa!

 

A great alternative to this oil that I’ve found is this Vaseline intensive care cream, which is a two in one targeted hand and nail cream. It’s not as effective as using the oil alongside a hand cream, but if you use this daily it will definitely make a difference!

My final tip for helping your nails to be as strong as can be it to use a strengthening nail polish. I use this Sally Hansen Hard As Nails Nail Polish either alone, or as a base coat if I’m painting my nails. If you want this to act as a targeted treatment then build up layers every other day. I don’t have the patience to do this often, but when I do I can really see the results!  Would love to hear if of any other cuticle targeted products!

X

My Sun Cream Saviour – sk:n Repair & Protect

  

As a teenager riddled with spots and extremely oily skin, I dreaded summer holidays where I would have to slather sun cream on my face. Any product that I used seemed to sit on top of my skin and clog it up even more. Being extremely self-conscious I used to wear make up in the day on holiday, as I felt like all anyone could concentrate on were my spots. This combined with sun cream did me no favours whatsoever, and actually, made my skin a whole lot worse! I would have so much rather burnt to a crisp than add to the oiliness of my skin!

With age came the confidence to relieve my skin of make up during the day, and the realisation that covering up with sun cream is far more important!! I still however struggled to find a product that agreed with my skin until I went to a sk:n dermatologist for specialist treatment called Isolaz.

As part of the treatment I was instructed to use the products they have developed, which are fantastic for spot prone skin! The face sun cream included in the pack is the best I have used to date! It’s nourishing, moisturising and most importantly is super light and doesn’t give me spots!! It’s 100% mineral, that is chemical free, paraben free and water resistant, which is perfect for days by the pool, or on the beach. When I apply this I rarely also use moisturiser, as it’s fantastic alone. As well as this the smell is divine. I really can’t sing its praises enough!!

I use factor 50, as it’s so important to protect your skin from harsh UV rays as well as burning. Plus, I would rather have paler skin now than wrinkly skin when I’m older! As it’s dermatologically tested this product is suitable for any skin type so I would recommend to anyone looking to invest in a reliable skin care brand. sk:n products used to be stocked in Boots, but I believe they’re now only available in sk:n stores and online. It really is a great product to add to your summer beauty list, so go go go!

I was in Dubai over the bank holiday weekend in 40-degree heat, and have come away burn free thanks to this sun cream! I’ve included a few of my holiday snaps for you to take a peak at…

   

    

  

  

 

I would love to hear if anyone else is using this product, and their thoughts on it!