Monday, 9 October 2017

my milkshakes bring all the boys to the yard!

This is a hair care post!

I know the title is a bit misleading, let me explain..

Whilst browsing the haircare aisle in Boots I saw these bright bottles on the shelf and at first glance thought they were something to drink, looked like smoothies/milkshakes to me!
Maui shampoo and conditioner
Maui shampoo and conditioner

Once (glasses on now ๐Ÿค“) I read the label I quickly realised they were on the right shelf and are in fact shampoo and conditioner bottles.   However the ingredients do sound good enough to eat... ๐Ÿ

About this range - Maui

I had not heard of the Maui range before but I still went ahead and purchased a bottle of Strength and Anti-Breakage + agave shampoo and the matching conditioner.  They were £8.99 each which is more than I usually pay, but it was pay day so I thought, Why not?

Maui (which is named after the island in Hawaii) have 5 catagories in their range:
  • Curl Quench + coconut
  • Thicken and Restore + bamboo fibres
  • Nourish and Moisture + coconut milk
  • Revive and Hydrate + shea butter
  • Strength and Anti-Breakage + agave (the one I brought)
What is different about Maui (apart from their packaging) is, at the heart of their products is aloe vera juice and coconut water - as opposed to regular products that have water as their first ingredient, and trust me it makes a difference.
Maui shampoo

Also, they don't include a whole range of moisture stripping nasties such as  silicon, parabens, sulphates etc and are as you would expect the products are planet and animal friendly. ๐Ÿฐ๐ŸŒŽ

The Shampoo
Maui shampoo

It is very thick and was a tiny bit difficult to get out of the bottle, however thumping the bottle like it was ketchup did the trick.

It has a lovely smell and produced a really luxurious lather, I didn't need much.  I always shampoo twice out of habit really, but I do have long hair so like to make sure I get it all.

The Conditioner
Maui conditioner

I would say the same smell as the shampoo but not quite as strong.

How to describe the smell, apart from very nice and I like it?  As the main ingredient is aloe I guess it smells of that along with agave, coconut, hibiscus oil and pineapple, so fruity, tropical and uplifting!

Again a little bit difficult to get out of the bottle, when I did, I got a good dollop that I applied to the ends of my hair, fringe and then lightly on the rest.

My hair is bleached so definitely chemically treated, which is the exact hair type the Strength and Anti-Breakage range is aimed at.

After about 5 mins I rinsed it off, as it rinsed away it smelt wonderful.

Results
Maui shampoo and conditioner

Ok so however funky a bottle looks, or how fab the label reads the real proof of any product is in how it works for you.

Results from shampoo and conditioner are usually pretty instant - apart from leave in products that carry on working.  I wrote a post about the cumulative affects of leave in hair care products - you can read it here (its quite good!).

After my first time using Maui I styled and dried my hair as usual - but then WHOA THERE what great results!  I was so pleased with my blow dry, how my hair felt and looked plus it smelt fab.

Either I had suddenly become a super top stylist or it is down to the aloe juice.

Woke up the next morning and went out again with bright bouncy happy hair - I even threw in a little swagger as I was feeling that good!!

If you are looking to treat your hair I would recommended you check out the Maui range, I am so glad my impulse buys turned out so well :)





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Monday, 2 October 2017

DermaNatural - Moisture on call*

A change of season and skincare

This is my first post of October which in the UK is Autumn, so it's getting colder with shorter days and longer nights.

Colder weather means the heating is on which tends to result in my skin drying out a bit more than normal - so it needs moisture, moisture, moisture, and also layering up.

Fortunately for me along with the change of season comes a couple of new products from DermaNatural - Gentle Cleansing Face Wash and Skin Hydration Moisturiser aka Hydroboost, exactly what my skin needs at this time of year and going into winter. ❄️

About DermaNatural

DermaNatural create organic and natural skincare, offering salon quality products for home use. Produced in the UK ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง their products contain pure natural organic ingredients, 100% vegetarian and of course are never tested on animals. ๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿ‘

Gentle Cleansing Face Wash

This is a dual use face wash.  You can either apply it as a wash - add water and wash, or you can apply it like a cleansing lotion.
For me these two options are perfect as I like to wash my face in the morning and cleanse with cotton pads at night.

As a wash it foams up well but not too much, and is not at all drying to the skin, like some harsher products can be.

At night I enjoy the ritual of sitting in bed and taking off my makeup and then cleansing my face. To do this I massage this face wash into my face and neck and then simply wipe off the excess with a cotton wool pad and then finish with toner.

However you use it, it does an excellent job and all with the help of some rather lovely friends - avocado, coconut, apricot, tamanu oils plus oatmeal.

The texture is creamy and very very slightly fibrous which I expect is the oatmeal, a really gentle cleanser, super kind to my skin.

Hydroboost

This moisturiser is aimed at dry and stressed skin. Central heating and cold winds do make my skin extra dry so this soft comforting cream is just what I need.

A creamy and luxurious texture, fragrance free and jam packed with natural ingredients to give my skin the moisture boost it needs.

I always read labels, and find it reassuring when not only can I understand the words but then it sounds good enough to eat!!

Hydroboost contains, royal jelly, nut oils, oatmeal, banana to name just a few of the natural ingredients - (all the ingredients for a lush breakfast).

What it also contains, and this is very important when it comes to moisture, is hyaluronic acid.

Hyaluronic acid is a super start when it comes to skin hydration.  Don't be put off by the word acid, it isn't harsh at all, it holds water and therefore helps to plump up your skin.

We all naturally have hyaluronic acid in our skin but, guess what, it reduces with age, so get some in you now!

As I have dry skin I have been using hydroboost morning and night - face and neck.  It is lovely to apply and I find the texture comforting (I do have a crush on applying face creams).

As I am starting to layer up my skincare for the colder months I am topping this off with a face oil from Luna Kloris, as the oil helps to seal in the moisture - and it smells divine!

A change of season is always a good time to rethink your skincare, make up, wardrobe etc.
If you would like to find out more about DermaNatural, their products and how to buy here is the link to their website - www.dermanatural.co.uk

For now keep warm and keep hydrated ๐Ÿ‚๐Ÿ๐Ÿ’‹


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Monday, 25 September 2017

don't forget the SPF* ๐Ÿ‚

After the days of summer have gone

Sun protection, it's not just for those sunny days or when you are on holiday.  One of the best things I feel I have ever done for my skin is to wear an SPF every day.

I started to use sun protection back in the 80's when I was about 15.  Back then you didn't get skincare with added SPF so I used to apply a sun cream for babies by Hawaiian Tropic 'Baby Faces and Tender Places'.

Times have moved on and we are all used to finding SPF in skincare and make up - which is great.  However you shouldn't just rely on the SPF protection in your foundation or regular moisturiser - it might not be enough - my advice is to ramp up the factor and layer it on. 

Read below to find out how my current routine goes...

Ah Skincare* Pro Age Eye Cream SPF 25


I was so grateful to receive this eye cream to try.  SPF in eye cream isn't that common, which I find odd as the skin around the eyes is thinner than the rest of your face.

This lovely product from Ah Skincare is a blessing for me and a real find, an eye cream with a decent SPF of 25 ๐Ÿ‘

A little goes a long way,  I've been using this since June and it is only just coming to an end, 5 months later.

I apply it each morning.  Along with the SPF it also contains carefully thought out natural ingredients to fight dark circles and wrinkles.  Non greasy, easily absorbed and I like the airless pump too so the product stays pure,  a very easy way to protect my delicate eye area from those rays.

Click HERE if you would like to read my post on some other Ah Skincare products, or you can find out even more from Ah Skincare themselves.

Tropic Skincare* Tinted Skin Shade SPF 50

I started using Tinted Skin Shade back in the summer and you can read my full review HERE.

Now the days are getting shorter I don't always apply this as it does give my face a slight colour, so it depends really on how pale I am looking - or how not pale I want to look!

Of course you could use it all year round, and with the SPF of 50 you wouldn't need to add any other sort of sun protection on top.

I like the fact that it is natural mineral sun care and it blends really easily and gives a good enough coverage for me to forsake foundation.

I also have a pot of their Sun Balm (SPF50) which is always in my handbag - great for applying to my nose, back of my hands etc and Mr Beauty Boo when I can catch him!

You can see the full range of Tropic products on their website - www.tropicskincare.com

Ultrasun Lip Protection SPF 30

Lips get thinner and less plump with age - sun damage adds to this, or at least could escalate things.

Some people can get addicted to lip balm, I am addicted to using my Utlrasun Lip Protection.  I apply it each morning.  Makes sense of course to try to reapply it during the day.

It's not scented, coloured or flavoured and makes a nice base for lipstick.

This balm has blackcurrant seed oil so keeps your lips nice and soft and protects them against dehydration, chapping etc.

Brush on Block SPF 30

Brush on Block - I love this powder and have been using it for such a long time - and I apply it every day, regardless.

You can apply it anywhere, and I do.  It's a mineral powder which you can dust all over your face - even your eyelids.  It's colourless,  gives a lovely finish, I doubt you would even notice I was wearing it (however if you like to highlight, apply that after).

You might notice from the picture that the packaging looks a bit worn - which it is, it used to say Brush On Block - now it just says ON!  The reason is you can buy refills, you unscrew the bottom part and keep the main part which has the brush on.

The quality of the brush is really good - it never sheds, and you can clean it with a wipe - I wouldn't recommend washing the whole thing.

SPF not just for sunny days - but everyday xx




*post includes PR samples



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Monday, 18 September 2017

Hair - The cumulative effects of leave in products

My crowning glory!?

It is fair to say I expect an awful lot from my hair, and yet I treat it so badly!

I wash and blow dry it too often.  Bleach and colour it, straighten and curl it, and I still expect it to look good and grow!  

I use OK quality shampoo and conditioners but never seem to have the time to apply a hair mask - and yet I have so many...

I used to think leave in products were just for those occasions when you don't have time to use a regular conditioner.  Plus using too many products would leave me with hair that was dull and lacked lustre - err which I had anyway!

With regard to leave in products I have definitely and absolutely changed my mind as over the last 8 weeks I have been using two products that are changing the condition of my hair day after day.
(I do still think you need to be careful about product build up - guess it depends on your hair type, and how much you use)
Wella Elements and Salon Science Hydrasoothe Spary

Wella Professionals Elements Leave in Spray

Wella Elements leave in spray
This is a conditioning leave in spray that I purchased from my hairdresser - who swears by it.  I use it after my regular shampoo and conditioner.

From their Elements range Wella state it "instantly repairs and prevents against keratin degeneration". Other products in the range (which I haven't tried - yet) include shampoo, regular conditioner, mask and serum. 

I have shoulder length hair - fine but lots of it.  I only need to use 5/6 sprays of this - give it a shake and use it on towel dried hair and comb through. 

I now use this every time I dry my hair, and even on those rare occasions when I don't blow dry it.  It smells lovely and makes my hair feel supersoft.  I purchased it from the salon but you can buy it online - I couldn't be without it.

Salon Science - Hydrasoothe cooling Spray- Aqua Cacteen ๐ŸŒต

Salon Science Hydrasoothe Cooling Spray
Salon Science Hydrasoothe Cooling Spray
What it is about cacti, they seem to be every where at the moment!?
I received this 150ml bottle in my July 2017 You Beauty Box. 

It contains organic cactus to help shield the scalp against 'environmental stress'.  A healthy scalp is essential for healthy hair.

Initially I thought this spray might have some UV protection but it doesn't appear to.  What it does give is a boost of extra moisture.

I give my hair a light spray with this each morning after I have brushed it.
You can buy in the UK at Boots, who often have a 3 for 2 offer on.
For more information on Salon Science and their other products click on the cactus! ๐ŸŒต

It takes two baby!

So back to the opening paragraph about my neglected hair.  

Because my hair is pretty badly treated by its owner - these two leave in products are giving it the extra level of protection it wants, needs and deserves.

Each time I wash my hair I notice it feels softer and is just so much more manageable after.  Before after just regular shampoo and conditioner my hair would still have stubborn tangles, now my comb just glides through.

When dry my hair looks and feels so much better - more body, less frizz, more shine - if it had a tail it would be wagging!!

To conclude, as with a lot of things in life two's company and layering products work.

If your hair is dry or damaged I would definitely recommend you try leave in products - and these two are working wonders for me.

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Monday, 11 September 2017

You Beauty Box - final post!

You Beauty Box - September

You Beauty Box
Apart from a brief break to Birchbox I have been a monthly subscriber to the You Beauty Box for about 4 years.

On the whole this has been a very enjoyable experience, as who doesn't love to get a parcel plus I have discovered some lovely brands.  Recently however I had thought about leaving as the boxes had, in my opinion, been going down in quality and annoyingly a few times my choices were no longer available... grr.

Should I stay or should I go?

This decision has now been taken out of my hands as with my September box came an announcement from You that they have "joined forces with, our sister site 'Latest in Beauty'".

Which means that September is the last box, and You Beauty Boxes will cease to be.

(I am really going to miss their Christmas Advent Boxes...)

The final box

When I made my choices I was unaware this would be the final box, however that would have made no difference to my picks, which were:

Dr Organic Moroccan Glow Body Polish
I choose this as it is 200ml so a decent size and I thought from the name it would be a body scrub, which it is, however it has a sub title 'pre tan exfoliator', I never self tan, or err tan.

However exfoliation it's not just for tans.  I will use this in the shower, and at 200ml it should last a while.

I am not that keen on the fragrance, it smells quite spicy and heavy.  I prefer a lighter, fresher, zesty smell for the shower but nevertheless I will use it.
Buy at Holland & Barrett

Seahorse Plankton 5 Minute Miracle Mask
I was keen to try this product as I had read about it.

It's from a company called Beauty Kitchen and is available direct or you may find it at your local Holland & Barrett.

I received a 60ml pot, which is full size ๐Ÿ‘

First off I like the smell, which if you are going to be putting something on your face is pretty important.

As the name suggests this is a 5 minute face mask.  100% natural, suitable for vegans and does definitely not include seahorses!

I haven't tried it yet, but the mask is said to give an "instant detox... with plumping and firming" so I have high hopes.  If it warrants it, I will do a separate post...

Bioderma - Hydrabio Creme
Product sizes are getting smaller now ๐Ÿ˜” just 5ml, but I did get two.

Aimed at dry, dehydrated skin.  Handy sizes to have for travel.

Aussie 4 Minute Miracle Reconstructor Conditioner
Bonus gift 1, a 20ml sachet.  I have tried plenty of Aussie products before, and they are good, but I can't get super excited about this.

Jardin de Vie 'Grenade' Sensuality
Bonus gift 2, perfume sample, 1.5ml by Weleda I have tried it and don't like the smell, however you might!

Final thoughts

I think that this box if it had not been the last produced by You would have been my last anyway, as it was time for a change.

You Beauty are offering members a 'sign up' offer if you join Latest in Beauty but I haven't taken it up, although I did think about it....

They offered me a Free Gift "worth over £50", a Paula's Choice Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment so I was tempted but they also stated in the small print... 'while stocks last'.

I did look at the Latest in Beauty website, they do an option which is £9 per box (you choose 3 items), which was comparable to my subscription with You  - £8.95 for 3 items plus 2 bonus items each month.

I didn't sign up though as they really gave me too many options to choose from!!!  I know, that sounds daft, they offer lots of items, but none that I really wanted, plus all small sizes.

Also I needed to admit to myself that I was really only interested in joining for the free gift offer, but there was no guarantee of that due to 'while stocks last' warning.  At checkout there was no indication I would be getting my freebie so I didn't complete my purchase and left the site.

Tip:  a few days later after leaving my shopping cart full I got an email offering me 10% off if I completed my checkout ๐Ÿ˜

Help me decide!

When You started their beauty box there weren't many beauty boxes about but they have certainly caught on.

I haven't yet but am sure I will miss getting a monthly parcel so I will no doubt  sign up to another beauty box, but which one??  Choices, choices...  please help me to decide, by leaving me a comment below.

Thank you x
Emily










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Monday, 4 September 2017

Collagen Milk* ๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿ“

Collagen Beauty Milk

If you are a regular reader of this blog, you will know that collagen plays a big part of my beauty & skincare regime.

I have been trying (and reviewing) a number of collagen drinks, which if you like you can catch up here.

Collagen Beauty Milk

Collagen Beauty Milk - as the name suggests, this is a milk based product.  So along with collagen it has other nutritional benefits, plus you can mix things up a bit and cook with it.

Each 200ml bottle has all the nutritional information on the back - 112 calories per bottle and if you are on weight watchers I can tell you it is 4 points ๐Ÿ‘

Collagen Beauty Milk currently comes in one flavour, strawberry which you can drink straight from the bottle (best served chilled).  

The taste is very pleasant, what you would expect really, strawberry flavoured milk but with the added bonus of 5,000mg of collagen to help your skin, hair and nails.

Also a good dose of Vitamins B, C & E (vitamin C and collagen are always a great combo).  

It also contains 50mg of green tea extract.  Now I hate tea, any sort, green, builders, fruit, peppermint but am pleased to report this milk has no tea like taste whatsoever ๐Ÿ˜€

Green tea is an antioxidant which can help speed up your metabolism, so I am very happy that I have now found a way to drink it without the tea taste.
Collagen Beauty Milk info card

On the diet front too, this milk (which is produced by The Protein Drinks Company aka UFit) has 11.9g of protein in it, so it helps to fill you up.  

Collagen

In case you don't already know, we all have it, but production drops from... about *sigh* 25 .  However you are unlikely to really notice the decrease until you are well into your 30's.

What are the signs? fine lines, wrinkles, skin firmness, lack lustre etc.  Which are all part of getting older I suppose.  However getting collagen into your body to top up the dropping levels seems like a very good idea to me, so HURRAY! for collagen drinks and now Collagen Milk.

Collagen Milk - choices, choices..

So you can put your Collagen Milk in the fridge, give it a shake and drink it - that is all very easy and straightforward.  Drink it straight from the bottle or pour it in a glass the choice is yours.
Collagen Beauty Milk in bottle just shaken
Collagen Beauty Milk poured into the glass

However, because this is a milk  you can add other ingredients to it to make a smoothie, pudding or even bake and make some cookies!

So far I have tried making:

Strawberry & Banana smoothie ๐ŸŒ ๐Ÿ“ 
200ml Collagen Beauty Milk
1 banana
5 strawberries

Blend together with a hand held blender - drink.
This made a really nice smoothie that I had at about 10am, kept me nice and content until lunchtime.
Strawberry and banana smoothie made with collagen beauty milk

Strawberry Angel Delight with Banana ๐ŸŒ๐Ÿ“๐Ÿง - makes 4
200ml Collagen Beauty Milk
100ml skimmed milk
90g half fat crรจme fraรฎche
1/2 banana
1 large strawberry
Collagen Beauty Milk and Strawberry sugar free angel delight
Pour the milks into a basin, sprinkle the Angel Delight on top and whisk until thick.  Divide into 4 dishes and allow to set.

The Angel Delight packet said add 300ml milk so this is where I got the measurement from, however it didn't make a lot, so once set I stirred in 30g of crรจme fraรฎche into each serving.

Topped it off with banana and a few strawberries.

Tasted divine! and still a low fat pud, yum.

I am loving cooking with collagen, but equally enjoy drinking it neat straight from the fridge.

Why not add Collagen to your shopping list?

However you decide to take it Collagen Beauty Milk is great (providing you like the taste of strawberry and are OK with milk of course).

You can purchase direct from the Collagen Beauty Milk website, or other retailers for example Tesco.

Collagen tastes good, makes you look good - what's not to ❤️ ๐Ÿฎ

*Post includes a PR sample

How do you enjoy your collagen?
Are you a collagen fan - please let me know how you take yours, leave me a comment below.
Emily

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Monday, 28 August 2017

BKR Water Bottle

It's not rocket science! ๐Ÿš€

Water, we all need it, lots of it, and not just necessarily when we are thirsty.

Easier said than done? I'll be honest, I've always struggled with drinking the suggested 6-8 glasses a day (about 2 litres).

As well as keeping you alive ๐Ÿ˜† water is a great beauty supplement.  Needed to keep your skin hydrated and helping with organ function including supporting the kidneys with flushing away toxins ☠

Oh yes, and all at zero calories of course.

Enter the BKR Water Bottle

BKR bottles are made of glass, available in a multitude of colours and sizes, reusable and incredibly tactile...

The one I have recently purchased is the 'Teeny' 250ml bottle in 'Rosy' and it is just so cute; it has kinda changed my life!

I just love the way this little guy feels (and fits) in my hand, and because it is made of glass I don't need to worry about any of the negative claims about possible bacteria from reusing plastic bottles.

Of course there are plenty of reusable water bottles on the market, but I like to surround myself with things I love and BKR water bottle is now one of them!

I picked this pink bottle, it was a hard choice as there are so many lovely colours and designs available.

BKR like to keep things fresh and on trend, so they regularly bring out new colours and designs.  I have a feeling this may be my first of many bottles, they would also make great gifts...

Every Day Use

From a practical point of view, the top screws on super tight and the little hook is just the perfect fit for a couple of fingers, or even just the one.
250 ml BKR water bottle Rosy
The diameter (width) is about 6cm which is the perfect fit for the cup holder in my car, the silicone sleeve extends to the bottom of the bottle so it sits sturdily and has an anti-slip quality.

It is made of glass so it could break, but the sleeve adds a good level of protection, but trust me once you have one you will want to treat it with care.

Cleaning is easy, hot soapy water or in the dishwasher, the sleeve is easy to remove (and put back) should you wish to, but it's not compulsory for cleaning.
BKR Teeny water bottle 250ml
Because it only holds 250ml it doesn't weigh me down, and snuggles into any handbag.  It is equally easy to carry, either in the palm of my hand, or using the hook.

It comes with me on my daily walk with Bun (my cockapoo), as you can see he admires it too ๐Ÿถ
BKR Teeny water bottle 250ml with dog

Drink anyone?

I feel a bit daft writing this, but this water bottle really has changed my (water drinking) life!!

It is still (!๐Ÿ˜‰) just water (usually tap) but I no longer find drinking water a chore now it is from this glass bottle!

The 'Teeny' is the smallest in the range, BKR do 3 sizes, 250ml, 500ml and 1 litre.

The BKR is made of glass so as mentioned before it could break, so treat it with care.  However, if you were unlucky enough to break it within the first 90 days of purchase BKR offer a Replacement Service - click here for details. (they also sell replacement bottles/lids and accessories)

For me 250ml is the perfect fit, it means I take 'teeny' steps to drinking my 2 litres a day, but breaking it down into 250ml steps makes it achievable.

Also the advice is you should get your water in gradually during the day, rather than drinking it all at once.  I am finding it very easy to drink and refill my bottle 8 or so times during the day to get to the 2 litre mark.

I am so pleased I purchased a BKR, have you fallen in love with one?  Please let me know if you too have had your life changed by them!! ๐Ÿ’ฆ
Emily

Buy your BKR


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