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Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Mungo Murphy's Nourishing Seaweed Mask

I have had this little jar of facemask in my stash for a few months and not gotten around to reviewing it. Nourishing Seaweed Mask was part of January's SoukSouk box. Discovering that niche brand, that little gem of a product is the whole attraction of a beauty box subscription. Mungo Murphy is a man who loves seaweed, whether that be eating it or making products with it. You can read his story here. I have to say it really made me smile and I am intrigued by some of the recipes.

Anyway, onto the actual mask. The ingredient list couldn't be simpler. Just one ingredient, ascophyllum nodosum - seaweed. It is rich in vitamins (especially B vitamins), minerals and amino acids, and cleanses, detoxifies and balances the skin. Pretty impressive claims for just one ingredient.

The mask is a fairly fine powder, and has a greeny/brown colour. The instructions say to mix a teaspoon of mask with a little water, oil, yoghurt or honey. When I tried mixing it with water, there was nothing to bind it with. I did try it with water to begin with, but it was difficult to get it to stay put on my skin. For that reason I would suggest using honey or yoghurt.

Being a seaweed product, this does smell strongly of seaweed. Again mixing it with honey or yoghurt does dampen down the smell a little. Having said that, if you have a delicate nose, this may not be the product for you. Once I got past the smell I was really surprised at just how good a mask this actually is. Firstly it is very gentle. Even when I made it up with water, it didn't completely dry up on my skin, meaning their was absolutely no tight skin afterwards. I skin looked and felt like it had had a really thorough deep clean, but without the dryness I would usually associate with it. I would say that the results are comparable to that of a good AHA peel mask. Although it may not smell quite as appealing, this offers a really good alternative.

Friday, 27 March 2015

Green People Gentle Cleanse & Make-Up Remover.

Green People are a brand that I really like. I think that generally their products are very affordable, made using good quality ingredients, as well as having good ethics. As I have come to the end of my Gentle Cleanse & Make-Up Remover, I realise that although I have mentioned it in passing I haven't actually reviewed it properly. Moving swiftly on ....

I have had Gentle Cleanse & Makeup Remover on the go for somewhere in the region of 9 months. It isn't a product I use everyday, but it is one that I use on a regular basis. I think it is safe to say that 200mls goes a very long way, and I do feel that I have had my money's worth from this.

I like to use Gentle Cleanse as both a first and second cleanser. Indeed this is one of the best I have used as a first cleanse. It does a fantastic job of removing makeup and does not irritate my eyes in the slightest. Although I wouldn't say that my skin is especially sensitive, my eyes are. As someone who wears contact lenses I am always mindful of how gentle a product is. I do tend to follow with a second cleanse with a balm in Winter at night, but in the mornings this is lovely to use by itself. 

Gentle Cleanse has a pleasant Rose Geranium fragrance. It's formula feels very nourishing thanks to the combination of Olive Squaline, Calendula, Aloe Vera and Shea Butter. This is a great choice for anyone with either dry or sensitive skin. It certainly does a great job of thoroughly cleansing without stripping the skin. I like the airless pump, it just helps keep everything clean and fuss free. The only slight drawback is that you can't tell exactly how much product is left.

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Salcura Spring Skin Rejuvenating Hand Therapy

Now that the weather is (thankfully) getting a little milder, it is time to swap some of my trusty Winter skin saviours, for lighter alternatives. Hand cream is one of my particular obsessions, so that is where today's post will focus.
I recently reviewed British and natural brand Salcura's Hand Hydrator and was lucky enough to be  sent a jar of their Spring Skin Rejuvenating Hand Therapy . Salcura's products are aimed at those with sensitive and irritated skin conditions, as well as dry skin like my own.
Spring Hand Therapy comes in a sleek jar, containing a generous 85mls of product. I think price wise, it is very good value for money. I can see this jar lasting me quite some time.
Because of the packaging, this is something that I would use at home rather than when I am out and about. Although made of sturdy plastic, rather than glass, it is a little bulky to be carrying around. This is an observation rather than a criticism as I am quite taken with the way it looks on my bedside table.
The texture is lovely and airy, feeling more like a whipped mousse than a cream. Like the Hand Hydrator, it absorbs quickly and without any greasy residue. It isn't quite as intensively moisturising as the Hand Hydrator, so is perfect for warmer months. I can honestly say that I am very impressed with how soft it leaves my hands.
Spring Hand Therapy has a light, fresh fragrance which is in keeping with the product. The Basil and Roman Chamomile give it a herbal aroma, which feels very Spring like. Overall I am very impressed with this hand cream, I think it is a lovely product that I am happy to recommend.

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Suti Trial Pack

It's no secret that I love a tester set. I love being able to get a feel for a brand before committing to buying the full size products. This is particularly true, when a lot of the brands I drool over sell mainly online. I have had this set from Suti for quite a while and paid about £9 for it. When I looked online I see that the current sets include a sample of their Honour Face Cream, which I don't think came with mine. Having said that, I feel £9 was a fair price for 5 decent sample sizes.  
Rejuvenate Face Oil (4mls) is what I would describe as a dry oil. It's formula is very light, making it ideal for day time use. Despite how easily this absorbs it feels very hydrating on the skin, thanks to the Rosehip, Evening Primrose, Jojoba Oils and Carrot Seed Extract. It has a gorgeous uplifting citrus fragrance and I can see why this is one of Suti's best selling products. It is certainly one of my favourites of the samples.

 Rosa Rubiginosa (Rosehip) Seed Oil*, Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Oil*, Argania (Argan) Spinosa Kernel Oil*, Limonene**, Citrus Reticulata (Tangerine) Peel Oil*, Tocopherol, Santalum Austrocalendonicum (Sandalwood) Wood Oil, Boswelia Carterii (Frankincense)*, Citrus Aurantium Bigaradia (Orange) Flower Oil*, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil*, Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Seed Extract*, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Oil*, Linalool**, Geraniol**, Citral**

Nourish Face Oil is a more intensive face oil designed to be used at night. I would say that this is better suited to dry or mature skin types. When I looked through the ingredient list, I expected that this would be the oil that I would favour. It has a really strong base of nourishing oils which suit my dry skin perfectly. A combination of Avacado, Macademia, Apricot , Sesame, Argan and Candula, sounds wonderful, and indeed left my skin feeling very soft and pampered. I usually love the fragrance of Geranium, Bergamot, Patchouli and Jasmine, but I found this a little too heady. I think if this were a body oil, I would love this, but as a face oil it is a little much for me,

Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil*, Macadamia Integrifolia Seed Oil*, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil*, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil*, Argania (Argan) Spinosa Kernel Oil*, Tocopherol, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract*, Citrus Sinesis (Orange) Peel Oil*, Pelargonium X Asperum (Geranium) Oil*, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil*, Pogostemon Cablin (Patchouli)*, Jasminum (Jasmine) Grandiflorum*, Limonene**, Citronellol**, Geraniol**, Linalool**, Citral**, Benzyl Benzoate**, Eugenol**
Cleanse Facial Cleansing Balm is simply divine. In the pot, the balm has a slightly grainy appearance (as do all the balm samples), but this soon disappears on contact. The balm transforms into an oil when warmed between the fingers. The combination of Shea butter, Cacoa butter and Beeswax makes this a very nourishing formula, although is obviously not suited to Vegans. Again it has a bright, cheerful and citrusy fragrance that makes this a pleasure to use. This is certainly one of my favourite products from the set.

Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter*, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Seed Butter, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil*, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil*, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil*, Cera Alba (Unrefined Beeswax)*, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter*, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil*, Limonene**, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract*, Citrus Aurantifolia (Lime) Oil*, Citrus Reticula (Mandarin) Oil*, Tocopherol, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil*, Pelargonium X Graveolens (Geranium) Flower Oil*, Linalool**, Geraniol**, Citronellol**

Purity Gentle Balm is a super rich balm, that is perfect for soothing dry and irritated skin anywhere. This was originally made for babies, so it has a very subtle fragrance and is very gentle. Another lovely balm.

Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter*, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Seed Butter, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil*, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil*, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil*, Cera Alba (Unrefined Beeswax)*, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter*, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil*, Limonene**, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract*, Citrus Aurantifolia (Lime) Oil*, Citrus Reticula (Mandarin) Oil*, Tocopherol, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil*, Pelargonium X Graveolens (Geranium) Flower Oil*, Linalool**, Geraniol**, Citronellol**

Fabulous Foot Balm is a refreshing and deodorising blend of peppermint, eucalyptus and lemon essential oils. It really is an incredibly rich formula and needs to be used very sparingly. I am very impressed with how soft this made my feet.

Butyrospermum Parkii (Unrefined Shea) Butter*, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil*, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil*, Cera Alba (Unrefined Beeswax)*, Cucurbita Pepo (Pumpkin) Seed Oil*, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil*, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract*, Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Extract*, Citrus Limon (Lemon) Peel Oil*, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Leaf Extract*, Tocopherol, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Oil*, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Oil*, Eucalyptus Globulus Leaf Oil*, Limonene**, Linalool**

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Souksouk Pamper Boutique Box

I made the decision to stop my SoukSouk subscription last month, and regretted it when I saw the contents of the last box. When I saw the email for their special edition boxes I couldn't resist the Pamper Boutique Box. This is a great mixture of makeup, hair and skincare. A lot of these products I have received in previous boxes, but are products that I have thoroughly enjoyed. I do hope that SoukSouk will do more of these boxes in the future and would like to see them selling the samples individually so you could build your own green box.
Firstly I must apologise as this photo should include a pair of eyelash curlers, but I was too lazy to take all my photos again. Four of the items (including the eyelash curlers are by the French brand Avril. Their products are certified by Ecocert and are refreshingly affordable. The mascara is one of the best natural ones I have tried. I am not too fussed on the chocolate shade nail polish, but really like the blue one.
Black eyeliner is a staple product for me. I have acquired quite a few of the these by Inika from various boxes, but would happily buy them anyway. They apply well and last.
A full size lipstick by Xenca in the shade Candy. I have a couple of their lipsticks and love the shades I have, but this unfortunately is not my colour.
A sample of FOM Revitalising Hair Serum. I really like this and bought the full size a while ago. I will use this for travel.
Travel sized Shampoo and Conditioner by Bentley Organics which smell lovely. The full sizes of these are reasonably priced, so I am hoping these work for me.
The Vitamin E and Grapefruit Lipbalm by Lucy's Lotion is enormous and utterly delicious. This is a firm favourite.
Inner Soul Organics Romance Me Skin Oil. I haven't tried this particular fragrance, but it smells wonderful. I am looking forward to using this.
SpaRitual Handprint Serum this is a lovely and fresh hand serum. I like this a lot.
Mungo Murphys Nourishing Seaweed Mask I won't say too much about this as I have a review planned in the next week or so.
Nourish Skincare Kale Enzymatic Exfoliating Cleanser is fantastic as either a scrub or a mask, this is such an effective product.
AS.AP Cleansing Oil, Lip Balm and Cleansing Cloth. These were part of last month's SoukSouk box and were the products that I was kicking myself for missing. I definitely want to try more from this brand. 
I had some SoukSouk seeds to use, which are SoukSouk's loyalty points. Redeeming 200 points gets you an extra treat, and what a generous treat I was sent.
Samples of Kris D'Amour Soothing Body Oil and Body Butter. I have tried a few of Kris D'Amour products, but not this particular line, and have liked them a lot. Looking forward to seeing how these compare.
The final item is a full sized Age Resist Moisturiser by Skin Blossom. Organic skin care certified by the soil association for led than £10. Yes please! I have used this previously and have been very impressed with it. I have a couple of other Skin Blossom products on the go at the moment, so am a big fan of the brand.

Saturday, 7 March 2015

Mu London Organic Rose. Rosehip & Rosemary Moisturiser.

Mu London is a brand that I have tried a couple of products from and have really been impressed by them. Products are made with simple, high quality natural and organic ingredients. Free from artificial colours, preservatives and fragrances. Mu London products are cruelty free and amongst others is registered with The Vegan Society and carries the BUAV's Leaping Bunny. They are also free from Palm Oil.
Today I thought I would share my thoughts on the Organic Rose, Rosehip & Rosemary Moisturiser. Like anything I have tried from Mu London, it has a rich and luxurious texture. This is a solid, waterless balm, made from just 6 ingredients. It melts effortlessly between the fingers, and applies beautifully. The base of this moisturiser is a combination of shea butter, coconut butter and jojoba oil, making it incredibly nourishing for dry and sensitive skins.
As the name suggests the fragrance comes from the Rose Otto Essential Oil. I love anything with Rose, and this is obviously what drew me to the moisturiser to begin with. Apart from the divine fragrance, Rose is such a fantastic ingredient in skin care as it benefits all skin types. As well as boosting dull skin, it softens fine lines, soothes irritations and balances oiler skin types. Rosehip is another ingredient I look for in skin care, as it works well for my skin type. It brightens and improves my skin tone. The final ingredient Rosemary, tones and balances the skin.
For me and my dry skin, this makes the perfect pampering night cream, but it can be used on dry skin anywhere. Although the formula is simple, it really is a very effective moisturiser. I have really enjoyed using this moisturiser, it makes my skin super soft and smooth. The jar has lasted me months of regular use, because I only need to use it sparingly. I really think that Mu London products are such good value  for money because of this. 
Vitellaria Paradoxa (Shea Butter)*, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut Butter)*, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba Oil)*, Rosa Damascena (Rose Otto Essential Oil)*, Rosa Canina (Rosehip Extract)* , Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary Extract)*

Monday, 2 March 2015

Empties February 2015

I am quite pleased with this month's empties. I feel like I have used quite a bit up. 
Orange Blossom Facial Cleanser (5mls) by Freshness of the Morning was a lovely little cleansing milk. Left my skin soft and smooth and loved the fragrance. I have another sample of this cleanser to use, so won't immediately repurchase.
Revitalising Hair Serum (10mls) after struggling for ages to find a hair serum for me, this is finally the one. Have already bought the full size.
Facial Cleanser (10mls) by Spieza. I liked the texture of this and thought it was a very good cleanser. However I found the fragrance a little over powering, so won't by the full size.
Calendula Cream (10mls) by Lyonsleaf is wonderful for dry, sore, itchy skin. This little pot lasted ages. I have a couple of other balms I want to use, but will be buying this in the near future. 
One Love Brand New Day Scrun & Masque (15mls) I loved this as both a scrub and a mask. Very gentle, but gives the skin a real glow. This is another product that lasts for ages. I have already bought another sample of this.
Bodhi and Birch Desert Rose Rejuvenating Face Oil (5mls) another product that I absolutely love, especially at this time of year. It is brilliant for boosting tired and dull Winter skin. I have another couple of samples and a full size in reserve.
Sweet Cecily 's Rose Water Toner (100mls) is another simple yet very effective product. Very reasonably priced, the only thing missing is a spritzer top. I have another couple of toners to use, but I will buy this again.
Lime Blossom Protecting Hand Serum (30mls) by Bodhi and Birch. I am so sad I have finished this up. I loved this hand serum and am putting this on my birthday wish list.
Barefoot SOS Face & Body Rescue Cream (25mls) this sample worked better as a hand or body cream for me. I found it stung the skin on my face. Not something I will be repurchasing.
Dr Bronners Organic Peppermint Castile Liquid Soap these feature regularly on my empties posts, so I won't go on too much about them. It is safe to say I have more in reserve.
Mitchell and Peach Shower Wash (50mls) I have had a couple of these samples in various beauty boxes. It's a very gentle shower wash. I find these pleasant enough, but wouldn't pay the full price for them.
Aromatherapy Associates Inner Strength Bath & Shower Oil (7.5mls) this is quite simply one of my favourite Aromatherapy Associates products. The lovely Annie surprised me with this very kind gift.