Posts Tagged: Beauty

Jan 14

Winter Beauty Saviours

Burt’s Bees Tips & Toes Extremities Kit – £12.99
Full on your favourite Burts Bees goodies, the Tips & Toes kit is great in making sure you don’t turn into a ball of dry flakiness come Spring. Handbag sized tubes and tins of Almond Milk Hand Cream, Hand Salve, Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream, Coconut Foot Cream, Thoroughly Therapeutic Honey & Grapeseed Oil hand Cream and Replenishing Lip Balm with Pomegranate Oil mean you can moisturize on the go.

Moo Goo Milk Shampoo and Cream Conditioner – £11.90/500ml
Moo Goo is an Australian beauty brand formulating natural products for sensitive and irritable skins. They’ve recently branched out into hair products which are great for sensitive and dry scalps. They both contain natural ingredients combined with essential oils to control the micro-flora of the scalp and prevent those dreaded white flakes.


Elemis Balancing Set – £30
Being outside in the cutting wind/rain then inside with stifling air conditioning does our skin no good. Redress the balance with Radiance Balancing Collection. With lime blossom, lavender and a mini tube of Pro Radiance Illuminating Flash Balm, the set costs £30 meaning a much-needed 40% saving compared to buying them individually.

Crabtree & Evelyn La Source Hydrating Body Cream £22.00/200g
An extra rich formula for the body and especially suitable for winter-exposed skin. Natural humectants and moisturisers (beeswax, glycerine and sorbitol) help to re-hydrate while vitamins A and E, borage oil, chamomile and aloe vera gel help to soften and restore suppleness to dry skin.

Fit Britches Shapewear is a range of shapewear clinically proven to reduce the appearance of cellulite, help you lose inches of the waist, hips and thighs, improve circulation and reduce muscle fatigue and soreness during physical exercise. I wear the Skinny Pants during exercise to keep everything in place and make my workout work harder.

Oct 13

Natural Beauty From Burt’s Bees & Naked

Natural beauty at its best.

Burt’s Bees Honey Collection – £15.99
I love a good gift set and this one from Burt’s Bees is a real winner. It contains a honey lip balm; honey & shea body scrub; thoroughly therapeutic hand cream and a naturally nourishing milk & honey body lotion. Not bad for under £20! Honey has been used for centuries in skincare for its skin softening abilities and high concentration if amino acids, vitamins and minerals. It’s criminally early to say, so forgive me, but I’m thinking great stocking filler or gift to yourself!


Naked Skincare Hair & Body Washes – from £3.99 
Every Naked product is 97% natural and free from sulphates, parabens and petrochemicals so perfect for young skins (my kids are all over these). Those with sensitive skin, dandruff and scalp problems, coloured tresses and those with thick and curly or African Caribbean hair. I use the Coco de Mer and Rose body wash on my children’s skin and the lovely smelling Jam Sandwiches 2 in 1 shampoo and conditioner on my youngest hair. Gentle yet effective and so reasonably priced.


Oct 13

NEOM Organics Perfect Night’s Sleep

Modern life means a lot of us are finding it hard to get a good night sleep. With the advent of iPhone’s, BlackBerry’s and iPads, are we ever really switched off?

I find it really hard to fall asleep, having kids means I’m woken up by the sound of a bird yawning and I find it really hard to fall back asleep again. I then make things worse by plugging back in to Twitter or Instagram making it even harder to get some more shuteye before it’s 6:30 am and my darling son wakes me up.

I’m forever on the quest for products to help me sleep so am really looking forward to trying out the new Perfect Night’s Sleep’ range from NEOM Organics.

The 3-step range uses key products from their Tranquillity range to aid the perfect night’s sleep. The scent (which launched after trialling over 200 blends and expertly twisting together over 12 of the purest essential oils) was made with one purpose: to induce deep relaxation:

NEOM Organics

Step 1: Light the Tranquillity Candle a couple of hours before bedtime to allow the oils to fill the room. Then drift off surrounded by beautiful, relaxing scent.

Step 2: Take a Tranquillity Bath. Studies show that combining pure essential oils with a calming routine works best for a deep sleep. This SLS-free Bath Foam is packed with maximum essential oils for you to breathe in whilst in the tub, allowing them to take hold.

Step 3: Spritz your pillow with Tranquility Mist just before bedtime, the final layer to your Tranquility trio. While you sleep the oils keep working into the night, keeping you relaxed and in deep sleep.

For more info on getting a good night’s sleep see

Tranquillity Candle – 380g/£39.50
Tranquillity Bath – 200ml/£20.00
Tranquility Mist – 100ml/£15.00

Sep 13

Mark Fast x Bare Minerals @ LFW S/S 2014

BareMinerals International Make-up Artist Sarah-Jane Froom was responsible for the beauty looks at the Mark Fast Spring/Summer 2014 show and we spoke to her on how to achieve the look at home using bareMinerals.

The Mark Fast collection celebrates the spirit of youth; a beauty look where punk meets gothic chic. The models had dewy skin paired with light, bright eyes and a heavy focus on the lip.


Complexion wise, Sara-Jane said: “For blush I wanted more of a flushed stained look, so I buffed on bareMinerals ready blush in the confession, not too much, just a pop of colour for a flushed effect. This look is all about the lips so I wanted to keep the skin simple and flawless.”

Deep, plum lips are not for the faint of heart! Sarah-Jane said: “This was a really cool lip look to create, we had a lot of fun! The lips were lined with Marvelous Moxie Lipliner in Exhilarated, topped up with Marvelous Moxie Lipstick in Lead The Way. This was blotted down, lined and filled with Round The Clock Eyeliner in Midnight to follow Marks gothic inspired creations. We added bareMinerals Ready Eyeshadow in Mirage and topped this with Marvelous Moxie Lipgloss in Dare Devil. The combination gave a petrol, PVC, oil slick effect.”


Follow these steps to get the catwalk look at home:

  • Prep skin with bareMinerals skincare, such as the Purely Nourishing Moisturiser and Prime Time Original Primer
  • Follow by building the perfect complexion using bareMinerals Original SPF15 Foundation
  • Add bareMinerals READY Bronzer in The High Dive
  • Apply bareMinerals Prime Time Eyelid Primer from the lash line to brow, follow by buffing 500 Thread Count from ‘The Dream Sequence’ READY Eyeshadow Quad under the brow bone
  • Add two coats of bareMinerals Lash Domination 10-in-1 Volumizing Mascara
  • Groom and define Brows with bareMinerals Frame & Define Brow Styler
  • Pop the apples of the cheeks with bareMinerals READY Blush in The Confession
  • Line the lips with Marvelous Moxie Lipliner in Electrified
  • Top up with Marvelous Moxie Lipcolour in Lead The Way
  • Buff on Mirage from ‘The Vision’ READY® Eyeshadow Duo over the lips
  • Finish with a slick of Marvelous Moxie Lipgloss in Dare Devil.

A selection of products used.

Will you be trying this out?

Makeup by bareMinerals, for Mark Fast S/S14

Sep 13

Beautification at Dove Spa, Canary Wharf

Eyebrows. Such a simple thing but goodness do they make a difference to your face!

I went along to the Dove Spa (inside Virgin Active, Canary Wharf) last week to try out their new Ultimate Brow Treatment. My brows had been left to their own devices for over a month (shame on me) and while bushy brows look great on Cara, it’s not something I can pull off.

Eyebrows- Grace

My 10-minute consultation started with a patch test (essential if you’re to have the tinting) and a detailed talk on what I wanted from my treatment, the shape I like best, my lifestyle – everything you could possibly discuss about brows. And there was surprisingly a lot!

After the colour was left on for 10 minutes it was down to the shaping. I prefer threading to waxing (less painful) and after each brow was done, my therapist let me check I was happy with the shape, which I certainly was.

After both brows had been threaded, she tidied them up with some tweezers et voila; I had a set of perfectly groomed, rather dark (but that faded slightly after a couple of days) expertly shaped brows. The results last up to six weeks.

It always amazes me the difference a good set of brows can make; they really do frame the face and finish your look off perfectly.

The Ultimate Brow treatment at Dove Spa is the most thorough and bespoke brow treatment I’ve ever had and my face thanks me for it!

While you’re there, why not treat yourself to a few Dove Spa products? I got the ‘Make Me Feel Relaxed’ Bath & Shower Gel and Body Lotion as I can never be too relaxed! I also got the Mineral Indulgence Thermal Recovery Mask to give my skin a real treat. It contains thermal water with essential mineral direct from the Pyrenees mountains, vitamin E to help prevent premature skin oxidation and argan and grape seed oil to improve skin’s firmness and softness.

The Ultimate Brow Treatment at Dove Spa – from £29

Aug 13

Things I’m Taking On Holiday

I’m off to Cyprus for a week later this month and the following are the products I’m taking with me. I’m packing light but smart:

Kiehl’s Travel Tested Solutions – from £9.50
All under 100ml so hand luggage approved, Kiehl’s ‘Travel Tested Solutions’ includes Purifying Hand Treatment, 24/7 Activated Moisturiser, In-Flight Refreshing Facial Mist and Eucalyptus Lip Relief. Air travel is notorious for sucking the moisture out of your skin so lather up with this hydrating range, formulated with essential oils.


Chantecaille Ultra Sun Protection SPF 50 Primer – £76
It’s a fallacy that dark skin doesn’t need skin protection. In fact, if you suffer from any kind of hyperpigmentation, exposure to the sun can make it worse which is why I’m not taking any chances and calling in the big guns with the Chantecaille Ultra Sun Protection SPF 50 Primer. It works in three ways: it increases the skin’s natural ability to protect itself from UVA and UVB rays 50-fold; ingredients like cherry blossom, lemon balm and white tea extracts deliver powerful anti-inflammatory properties and help protect DNA from internal and external oxidation and finally, carnosine helps protect collagen from degradation. Essential for home and away.


Aveda Three Step Suncare System – from £16.50
Coloured hair, sun, salt and chlorine do not make good bedfellows, which is why I’m going to try really hard to protect my hair this holiday. The Aveda Suncare Hair and Body Cleanser (love a 2-in-1) cleanses hair and body so is perfect for a thorough cleanse after a day in the sea or pool. It has a colour-safe formula containing corn-derived chelator and babassu betaine surfactant system, which won’t strip the hair’s colour while it removes chlorine, salt, and product residue. The cleanser also helps to maintain and boost moisture levels in both the hair and skin, with softening tamanu oil, certified organic coconut oil, certified organic sunflower seed oil, green tea extract and Vitamin E.
Throughout the day, apply liberal amounts of Aveda Suncare Protective Hair Veil with naturally derived UVA/ UVB inhibitors from Wintergreen and Cinnamon Bark oils to help protect the hair from colour fade, dryness and breakage. Comb through damp or dry hair for thorough protection.
Finally, end your day in the sun with Aveda Suncare After-Sun Hair Masque.
This intensive cream masque moisturizes and restores the appearance of sun-exposed hair with morikue protein, a natural antioxidant blend of green tea extract, certified organic sunflower seed oil and vitamin e, which help to protect hair from damage. Tamanu oil, organic shea butter, coconut and palm oils help to restore moisture to the most sun-damaged tresses.


Label M Leave in Conditioner – £12.95
As my hair is coloured, it is even more susceptible to damage so as well as a large floppy sunhat, I’m also taking some leave in conditioner and protein spray from Label M. I don’t see myself blow-drying my hair on holiday so I’ll be wearing my hair au-naturelle and using the leave in conditioner to shield hair against static and UV rays. It contains ginger, ginseng, bergamot, juniper, mandarin orange and vanilla to help control frizz and enhance curls.

Argan + Precious Oil Elixir – £12.99
This multi-purpose elixir contains argan, baobab, kukui, moringa and sachi inci oils and is rich in Vitamins A, D, C and E with high levels of Omega 3, 6 and 9. At only 50ml it’s perfect to take on holiday and it can be used as facial oil (apply direct to skin or add to usual moisturiser) on sun parched hair, on hands and nails (massage into cuticles) or on dry skin patches.


Elemis Skin Nourishing Shower Cream & Papaya Enzyme Peel – from £22
After a day at the beach, nourish your skin with the award winning Elemis shower cream. With camellia, macadamia and jojoba oils, it’s great for skin that has been dried out by the sun. The Elemis Papaya Enzyme Peel featured in The Independent’s 50 Best Beauty Buys and is perfect for treating the gentle skin on your face after a day in the sun. Even with SPF50, your face will catch some rays but this rinse-off exfoliating cream contains nourishing milk protein, Vitamin E and marine algae to moisturise, repair, and protect skin.


Little Me Organics Shhh Sleepy Head Body Cream – £4.65
All the excitement of being on holidays can make bed times worse (who wants to go to sleep when there are new adventures to be had) so I’m hoping this body cream with dill and organic lavender will not only nourish and soften their skin but will help put them to sleep too!

thisworks In Transit First Aid – £16

Travelling with children means cuts, scrapes and bites are pretty much guaranteed. Along with some colourful plasters, I’m taking this works multi-purpose antiseptic. This natural rescue remedy helps with anything and everything – spots, itches, bites, burns and, knowing my children, all 10ml will be done before I get home!


Baby Bee Getting Started Kit – £12.99
If you’re travelling with a very little one, everything you need for seven days in the sun is in this little kit. Baby Bee Nourishing Lotion, Shampoo & Body Wash, Diaper Ointment, Nourishing Oil and Buttermilk Soap and as they’re all sulfate, paraben, phthalate and petrochemical free, you know they’re gentle enough for even newborns.










Little Me Organics Shhh Sleepy Head Body Cream – £4.65
All the excitement of being on holidays can make bed times worse (who wants to go to sleep when there are new adventures to be had) so I’m hoping this body cream with dill and organic lavender will not only nourish and soften their skin but will help put them to sleep too!

Jul 13

Travel Beauty Essentials

If you’re lucky enough to be going away this summer, try not to stuff your beauty bag. Pack smart with these goodies:

This works clean skin 5-in-1 Water – £13
Ideal for summer travel, hassle free cleansing is easy with this works clean skin 5-in-1 water. It is a multitasking rosewater cleanser that effectively removes make-up decongests and brightens the skin. I use it at home and away.

Dr Hauschka Daily Escapes Travel Set – £21
This travel set contains small versions of bestselling Dr H products – cleansing milk, cleansing cream and facial toner. It is perfect for taking on holiday to help maintain a naturally radiant complexion when on the go.

John Frieda Luxurious Volume Refresh Dry Shampoo – £5.89
This is not one for those with natural hair but if you have braids, weave or relaxed hair this will work fine for you. Simply spray on to absorb oil and sweat between shampoos. It also helps transform fine, flat hair and gives you a volume boost.


ESPA Mandarin Lip balm – £10
A 100% natural formulation, this new ESPA Lip balm is enriched with mandarin essential oil for a beautiful orange scent, wild mango butter to soften and condition, pomegranate to increase hydration and rosemary to protect against environmental damage. The packaging is lovely too.


Chanel L’Ete Papillion de Chanel – from £18
Chanel can do no wrong in my makeup book (I’m talking Chanel, not Karl Lagerfeld) and their summer collection was designed to be worn on holiday. Certainly not one for the colour shy, the bright hues will look perfect against sun kissed skin. My favourite product is the nail colour Bel Argus; it applies wonderfully and is as thick, creamy and expensive looking and feeling as you want it to be.


These two I like because they are small enough (in size and volume – they are not over 100ml) to fit in your hand luggage so you can keep your skin on point en route!

skyn ICELAND Arctic Hydrating Balm – £25
A deeply reparative moisturising skin replenisher, the Arctic Hydrating Balm harnesses cryogenic technology from the Arctic and Antarctic to soothe and repair super dry, sensitive skin. Apply generously on long haul flights to hydrate your skin.


Orico Rush Hour Dry Body Oil – £19
This rapidly absorbed, ultra-nourishing organic body oil restores and revitalises dry skin to its sheer, radiant and glowing best – a perfect post sun treat.


Bonne vacances!

Jul 13

Lancome in Love

Lancôme have recently expanded their ‘In Love’ range with some new colours in the nail varnish, lip gloss and lip stick collections.

I tried out the Vernis in Love in ‘Very in Love’; Rouge in Love in ‘Midnight Crush’ and Gloss in Love in ‘Flash N Fuchsia’.


Gloss in Love comes in 12 shades and can be worn on its own or under lipstick. Flash N Fuchsia is a bright pink gloss that smells of vanilla and, according to Youcef S. Nabi, Lancôme President “defines lips without ever changing their natural shape. Its ultra-simple design creates results worthy of a make-up artist. Lancôme offers new gloss technology to every woman, whether she’s a make-up expert or a colour novice.”


It’s not too gloopy, doesn’t leave you with lip lash and comes with a double sided applicator. The curved side lets you apply the gloss very precisely to amplify shape and shine while the upper lip side enhances the upper lip contour.

Lancôme - Gloss in Love - 162 Scarlett Starlette

Vernis in Love in ‘Very in Love’ is a thick and shiny bright red with pink undertones. Two coats is plenty and it has good lasting power; three days in and no chipping.


Rouge in Love has been expanded with nine new shades. New vibrant reds, oranges and pinks mean Rouge In Love now has an incredible range of 33 colours with a shade to suit everyone. Midnight Crush is another bright pink (I’m sensing a theme here). It’s very moisturising; no need for lip balm under this baby.


Gloss in Love – £20
Rouge in Love – £21
Vernis in Love -£12.50

Jul 13

Glamglow Super Mud Clearing Treatment

As the Glamglow Super Mud Clearing Treatment is particularly good at addressing men’s skin concerns, I let Mr 32 Boroughs loose on this one. His review as follows:

I love a bit of celebrity living and, with pictures of a muddied Michael ‘honey voice’ Buble circulating the social media world, I was keen to follow suit. Problem skin, razor bumps, in grown hairs, black heads – beware!

My GlamGlow Supermud Clearing Treatment arrived in a hexagonal box with metallic silver and white packaging. The actual pot is somewhat small, but I was wooed with the promise of ‘super sexy super radiant skin’.


Its secret is scientifically advanced six acid blend mud, perfectly ph balanced to aid the detoxification process and embrace the most sensitive of skins.

I washed and cleansed my face beforehand to make it fresh for the mud application. First impressions were good. The liquorice smell was surprising which I assume is the eucalyptus leaf used to aid the skins glow. I used sparingly but was surprised at the coverage it gave. It felt cooling and pleasant to apply.

It took a good 5 minutes to dry completely but when it did I could see the pores appearing on my skin where the mud had vacuumed them out. This is down to what Glamglow’s trademarked Pore-Matrix, Activated-X Charcoal and K17-Clay which removes any pore congestion and encapsulates it on the surface of the skin to give visually a virtually pore free finish.

The verdict? A big thumbs up. The treatment delivers a healthy glow and has become part of my weekly Sunday ritual. Used as part of a wider routine I have definitely seen an improvement in my skin; not one spot or ingrown hair after shaving and a reduction in the severity of my frown lines. Even after several big nights! What’s not to love? Go on, get a little dirty.

Glamglow Super Mud Clearing Treatment – £45

Jul 13

The Beauty Edit: July

The last few weeks have brought so many lovely new releases it’s been hard to narrow it down to these six:


Bumble & Bumble Crème de Coco range – from £18.50
These products smell so good! In fact I was in the lift (elevator) and the lady behind stopped me to ask what I had used on my hair as the smell was so lovely. It’s not just the smell though; the range makes my hair look and feel nourished and moisturised and the masque left my hair smooth, silky and glossy. It’s very moisturising so it’s not suitable for those with very fine hair but everyone else (relaxed, natural, coloured, dry etc) it’s perfect.

Boots Eye Drops – from £9.49
If you wear contact lenses and work in an office, around 3pm your eyes probably start to feel dry and uncomfortable. My optometrist recently told me my eyes don’t produce enough tears (common with lens wearers) so I’m using these Contact Lens drops from Boots which have been specially formulated for use when wearing lenses. The Brightening Eye Mist helps reduce redness and puffiness so perfect before a night out while the Irritated Eye Mist is good if you suffer with hayfever.

Electric Hair P-4 Preparation Spray – £15.50
This leave in conditioner is perfect for protecting, detangling, softening, enhancing and priming your hair before styling. If you have curly/afro hair and you like to blow dry it straight, chances are parts of it dry out before you get round to them so use this spray to re-hydrate and condition. The range was formulated by hairdresser Mark Wooley who has worked on Sienna Miller’s hair. He said: “Great hair starts with good foundations so it is vital to focus on preparation. For hair that looks and feels luxurious from the inside out, you need a miracle product that de-frizzes effectively yet doesn’t leave behind any residue.”


Korres Japanese Rose Body Butter – £12.50
Online natural supermarket Big Green Smile has recently started stocking Greek range Korres. Using the finest quality organic herb extracts and natural ingredients and avoiding mineral oils, silicones, parabens and propylene glycol, each product details its natural formulation. I tried the Japanese Rose Body Butter which has a slightly whipped finish and leaves a very subtle shimmer on the skin. It is 93.6% natural so is good for use on even young skins.

Nanogen Hair Growth Factor Treatment Serum – £29.95
This light moisturising serum contains a powerful clinically tested formula that maintains natural hair growth, restores hair condition and protects the scalp from damage, creating the perfect environment for hair growth. It’s part of the new patent protected Nanogen Thickening collection (serum, shampoo and conditioner) which, in trials, gave noticeably thicker hair in 88% of 200 women who followed the regimen over 1 month. I’ve been using the serum for just over a week and my hair does feel slightly thicker already.

Origins Gin-Zing Energising Moisturiser – £23
This day cream/gel hybrid is perfect for waking up tired, dull skin. Ingredients include:
• Panax Ginseng: Known to help strengthen and eliminate visible signs of fatigue.
• Caffeine: A powerful anti-irritant derived from coffee beans
• Chestnut Seed: Desquamates dull surface cells.
• Olive: Provides oil-free hydration and creates a translucent “glow” to skin.
• Grapefruit Oil: Uplifting aroma that imparts clinically proven anti-irritancy benefits.
• Spearmint Oil: Known to encourage energy.
• Lemon Oil: Helps dispel mental fatigue and increase concentration and awareness.

It left my skin feeling smooth and smelling great.

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