17 Sep 2013

Bits & Bobs

I thought I'd given up on BB creams a year ago when I decided that they were useless on my oily skin. But ever since I have struggled with foundations, concealers and powders in an attempt to hide my blemishes and grease-ball face. Last week I decided that was it!!! I'd had enough, and was going to do a little more research to find the right all-in one BB cream. Since I first tried them there are now many more BB creams on the market from almost every brand possible. I made sure to look at plenty of swatches and reviews to find the right colour so that I wouldn't have spend too much time in the drugstore.

Maybelline pure dream BB cream for oily skin. £6.99

It is currently on offer in superdrug at 2 for £10 on selected Maybelline make-up so me and my friend both had one which saved a few quid. There are only 2 shades available for the oily skin version, Light and Medium which doesn't give you much choice. We both spent a good deal of time swatching and trying different creams from a few brands including Rimmel and Superdrug. 

Almost all of the BB creams were too greasy and din't sink into the skin at all resulting in a shiny face. Finding the right colour was also difficult. I'm mixed raced and my freind is Asian so we both needed something that was for medium/yellow toned skin. This BB cream was as close as we could get to our skin tones and it was also the only one that didn't look greasy when applied. It sinks in very quickly and gives amazing coverage. I don't even feel the need for concealer when I'm wearing this because it covers my blemishes so well. It does look a little pale on me but I'm hoping that it will be suitable for these colder months that are fast approaching. For summer I will have to find something different that suites my skin when it's more tanned. 

I am not happy about the fact that this BB cream contains dimethicone and phenoxyethanol, however I am desperate for some coverage so I am willing to let it slide for now. So far I am amazed with how well it works. It isn't very moisturising but it gives such a natural, non-shiny finish with as much coverage as a light foundation if not more. When I applied powder on my face it looked far too pale and far too matte, it was quite obvious that I was wearing powder so it is definitely not needed until later in the day when the shine comes poking through. Usually it only takes two hours for my face look shiny but with this BB cream I felt that my face lasted much longer. It does say on the back of the tube that it can be used with or without a moisturiser however I feel that a moisturiser is needed underneath to hydrate my skin first and then apply the BB cream on top. Doing this might also keep the dimethincone off my skin for a while.

I can't say how well it works in terms of keeping my skin clear as it claims to have 2% salicylic acid, but I may give an update in a month or so to see how my skin fairs.

Rimmel London clear complexion clarifying powder £3.99

I haven't tried it out properly yet but so far it gives an instant, very matte finish. It looks a little pale when first applied however I will have to try it again to see how it fairs throughout the day because some powder get more orange the longer you leave them on. I bought this because it is free from parabens, silicones and also claims to help with blemish prone skin. Again, I will probably give an update on this.

I finally bought it!!! The Nivea pearly shine lip balm in addition to the soft rose lip balm. neither of them surpass the blistex lip brilliance but they are free from 'those' ingredients that I don't like. The pearly shine lip balm gives a shimmery pink look but the soft rose has barely any pigment at all and does nothing but give a little glow. It contains SPF 15 which is why I was after it in the first place. Neither of them are as moisturising as the blistex lip brilliance which left my lips feeling hydrated for at least 24 hours after one application. Both lip balms seem to be devoid of moisture and look/ feel greasy so I probably won't buy them again.

£1.50 in Primark, there were plenty of bags with other letters but my name begin's with an A so of course I chose this one. I thought it would be great to use in the summer for picnics or carrying everything I need for a day of uni lectures and what not. Probably not suitable for colder months in case it rains and it won't keep my books/gadgets warm and dry.

I have already done a review on this conditioner but look, something's different!!

They've made the tube bigger!!!

For the same price of £1 you get 250ml of a great conditioner XD.

I couldn't believe it when I saw this sitting on the shelf in Discount UK, but there it was. Even though I've reviewed it before and have about six bottles of conditioner at home I just had to buy this to show my sisters. I'm glad I tried it again because it's not just the bottle that's changed. The actual conditioner feels much more watery than the last time I used it. I don't know whether this is a cheap way for the brand to make more money, or an improvement in the composition of the formula. The ingredients are exactly the same and it still gives good results; my hair feels soft, smooth and more manageable. This conditioner also seems to have repaired some of the damage caused by the organic timotei conditioners I had previously tried. The watery consistency actually gives the conditioner much more slip which is ace for de-tangling and co-washing, but at the expense of losing it's creamy nourishing properties I don't think I'm happy with this change. I suppose I can now try it as a leave-in-conditioner which would be a good idea since it has all those lovely oils that would be a shame to wash out all the time. It still gives me good results and makes my hair look the best its ever been straight after washing with no added product. Besides, Who can complain when it's just £1

I never thought I would buy one of these until I saw someone else do a post about how they get their smoothest legs possible and included this in the post. I barely shave my legs at all because it's a hassle to keep on top of it. Epilating keeps my legs smoother for much longer, however I thought I would give this a go and found a bottle in home bargains. There are other scents and gels specifically for sensitive skin but I haven't really seen them around.

I absolutely love this because it prevents my skin from feeling dry after shaving and make that blades glide much more smoothly. I use a Wilkinson Sword Quatro blade men's razor because the head is replaceable and it swivels so it's more flexible. This means you don't have to put in any effort when going around those awkward curves around your ankles and knees. Also having 4 blades makes the process much smoother and quicker. 

I can manage without a shave gel and make do with shower gel and water but this gel is very foamy, instead of just bubbly, so it makes the razor glide much more easily without pulling/tugging on my skin, preventing cuts and scratches. As long as I have some of this near by I will always use it so I think it's safe to say it is now an essential for me, especially for areas where the skin is quite delicate.

Tea tree essential oil roller ball. £5.40 from beautynaturals.com

It's a blend of oils using jojoba oil as a base and should help to fight blemishes and redness. The roller ball makes it very handy and easy to use however the oil blend does not sink into the skin at all, it just sits there which can be a nuisance to stare at so it is totally not suitable for wearing out in public. I have to say the packaging is nice and the product itself works okay. After one use on a red, coconut sized bump on my head the oil blend had reduced it to about half it's size over night and continued to do it's job on the next application. As for those smaller pimples well those are tougher to get rid of because they're not actually inflamed. It's safe to say that it does it's job but it's so oily and smells putrid. The smell fades after a 2 hours or so but it's far too unpleasant for me to bare on a regular bases. I am more than happy to go back to my acnaphase cream which also does a good enough job.

Skin Blossom Nourishing face moisturiser for oily/normal/sensitive skin £7.25 from beautynaturals.com

Whoever knew that oily skin could be such a darn problem because anything I try is too greasy and doesn't help to control shine. This moisturiser is almost perfect because it's light, absorbs quickly, leaves absolutely no shine at all, and still hydrates my skin. Jojoba oil is one of the first ingredients along with shea butter and although it's organic with a typical green scent it's not unpleasant. It feels like I've found 'the one' and I am very happy with this moisturiser and not only that it also comes in a cute bottle. You get 50ml in this big bottle which is very, very deceiving and a waste of packaging in my opinion because it has a pump that starts a third up from the bottom of the bottle. I also feel that pumps aren't very efficient at getting those last bits of product left behind and therefore leave a lot of waste. It is however, very easy to control how much you pump out so I guess that makes it more convenient.

I hope you enjoyed reading my ramblings and maybe found some of this post useful!


11 Sep 2013

Timotei organic health and shine conditioner

In my last post I mentioned a few things about the Timotei organic health and nourishment conditioner which left me feeling very disappointed. I hoped this health and shine conditioner from the same brand would do a little better but apart from smelling nicer my opinions for this one are no different.

It does say on the back of both tubes that my hair will not be as silky as usual, but if after one use of this conditioner and the last one my hair felt so rough that it was more difficult to de-tangle and apply any product. To me that is not a good sign. It also says on the back of the tube that I would be happy with the results but I am sure as hell not happy with the increase of split ends and lack of that smooth silky feeling in my hair. Heck, my hair has actually lost it's shine after using these organic conditioners by Timotei. I am utterly disgusted that I paid £5 for both the shampoo and conditioner (=£2.50 each) and my hair is now worse despite them being natural products. 

The consistency of this conditioner was not as thick as the last one and was even thinner than the Herbal Essences conditioners. Yet it still had no slip at all!! It's no where near ideal for de-tangling or deep conditioning. I haven't tried it as a leave-in but if  it doesn't have any slip then I don't see the point in bothering with it. this is the first conditioner I have ever tried in my entire life that has made my hair worse off and it makes me so annoyed that I could have used cheaper argan oil conditioner for £1 that is the best I've ever tried. 

I would give this conditioner and the other one by Timotei -1 and -2 out of five because of how damaged my hair is now. This one only has an extra point because of the refreshing smell which could have been the green tea extract. I read online that green tea is supposed to have a few benefits for hair which made me excited to use this conditioner. 

I haven't tried the health and shine shampoo because I don't use shampoo very often but I had no problems with the health and nourishment one other than the smell. It cleaned my hair and didn't strip the hell out of it however, I have noticed that my scalp is a little more itchy and also little dandruff around my hairline that I haven't had for months maybe a year. 

I would like to put the poor results down to these Timotei conditioners being badly formulated but it could just be that they are not suitable for curly hair. 

To anyone with wave, curls or kinks, I would advise that you stay far away from these conditioners and save you pennies. £2.50 is a lot for 150ml of conditioner that doesn't do any good. They are not worth the bother and you're better off buying that £1 argan oil conditioner in discount UK or poundland.

Hope this was helpful to anyone thinking of buying this.


10 Sep 2013

Findings of a product Junkie

This is what happens when I buy lot's of stuff but have no time or motivation to make a blog post. The result is a large pile and long list of stuff for me to natter on about.

enjoy........ :)

This is great for removing make-up but as a toner It's too early to tell. I tried it on my eyes and it all came off with one sweep except for my stubborn gel eyeliner and a teeny bit of mascara. It doesn't sting my eyes but it does feel a little bit slimy. Just a few drops is way more than enough because it spreads really far but when it's dried my skin feels a little bit tight. I spotted this because many bloggers and vloggers have gone on about the bioderma miscelle water which does the same thing but is more expensive. This L'oreal equivalent was £3 in ASDA. I'm trying to stay away from anything with alcohol since it dries my skin out and would make the oily skin problem even worse in the long term. Finding a toner that doesn't contain alcohol is almost impossible but this seems to be a good alternative.

My previous spot treatment of choice was the witch blemish gel. It was basically alcohol gel with a bit of witch hazel and although it worked really well it stung a little and I feared it was drying my skin and also ageing it. I bought this acnaphase cream from beautynaturals.com for about £8-9. It smells like some sort of herbal medicine and the packaging is very pharmaceutical so it must work. Some people may be put of by the smell  and the fact that it comes out as a light brown cream but I have tanned skin so I don't notice anything when I smooth it in. It seems to do the trick on big spots but not those small irritation bumps or those blocked pores. I have two other (cheaper) spot treatments lined up for trialling and hopefully they can do something about my pores.

Here is all the info on the back of the box it came in.

Do I really have to explain my reasons for buying this?? The packaging is so shiny and glamorous, and it says argan gold in BIG letters. I'm such a magpie. There is also a bath cream and body butter but I think they had phenoxyethanol and mineral oil in there so I stayed away from them. Although this shower butter (more like a shower cream) has a luxurious price of £3 in ASDA. It smells divine, feels very rich and creamy and doesn't strip my skin, in fact I think my skin feels softer since using this. It only lathers up if I use a shower puff but when it does it's like the biggest foam clouds I've ever seen for a sulphate free cleanser. This shower butter is a bit pricey for my weekly grocery list but is cheap enough to be a regular treat <3

I have been struggling for a while to find a good natural moisturiser for my face. Most natural products are perfect for my body but are way too greasy for my face and don't help at all with my oily skin. However this particular moisturiser is a light milk that absorbs into my skin instead of sitting on top of it. It contains camomile and other ingredients that are meant to calm and soothe the skin which should help with acne or irritation. So far I have had no problems with it, its not greasy, it absorbs quickly, sits under my make-up well, and it hydrates my skin. My only issue is that it has done nothing for my acne and it smells like stale milk or something along those line. I dread putting it on every day because of the smell so for those two reasons its going off my repurchase list. It was £2.95 for 50ml from beautynaturals.com. Worth a try but I won't be buying it again.

I bought this from the black hair store for £3. The ingredients is full of lovely oils including argan oil so I was very excited to try it. It's supposed to be for babies and is even suitable for the face but using an oily moisturiser on oily skin is never a good idea. In fact it made my face look so greasy I could have fried an egg on it. I should have known better. For the rest of my body it sinks into my skin reasonably quickly and makes it so soft, smooth and nourished. There seems to be a slight improvement in parts of my body that get spotty so this moisturiser probably isn't clogging my pores. It smells like those typical old school black hair products but I think that could just be the natural ingredients. It's very soft and creamy almost like a soufflĂ© which makes it very soothing to apply after a long bath or shower. 

I have been using the Blistex lip brilliance balm which was a smooth moisturising tinted lip balm with SPF. Nothing could trump it so I was upset when I found out that it had parabens in it, and thus began my search for an alternative. The Nivea pearly shine lip balm was meant to be the substitute but wasn't in stock so I bought this for use during my night time routine and stuck in the house days. I have a few lip butters but they're just waxy and sit on top of my lips instead of moisturising them. This milk ans honey lip balm does an okay job of moisturising my lips and feels very smooth, it doesn't trump the blistex lip brilliance but does the job and has natural ingredients. My only issue with it is that it doesn't smell as nice but I should really know that buy now after going all naturalesque with most of my products.........(sigh)

Just when I thought I'd had my fair share of weird smelling products I got a little surprise when I tried these.........

 Timotei's attempt at going organic and natural...... 
2 for £5 in boots which seems pretty reasonable for a spendthrift student like myself. I have to say that Timotei deserve a massive pat on the back for attempting to make hair products that are natural and organic. The health and nourishment pair include things like Shea butter and Brazil nut extract which I could certainly smell. I could also smell something that resembled herbs fresh from the ground (i.e dirt) and your old school black hair store products. The shampoo wasn't all that bad but the conditioner was half way to being on par with the Naked conditioners which are simply unpleasant. I am such a fuss pot with scent and natural products, I bet I would've made the princess and the pea look like a pauper again. They have also made a health and shine pair in their organic range, these have green tea extract which smells very refreshing to me and gives my scalp a warm tingle. I have much better opinions of these two which I will be reviewing  at some point soon. I'm not bothered about how much shampoo I get because I barely use it, however I don't think the conditioner is good value for money because for 150ml you don't get that many uses out of it. It's quite thick and difficult to work it into my thick hair so even more conditioner is required. It doesn't do anything special to my hair other than make is smell funny and difficult to de-tangle. I might as well use my 150ml argan oil conditioner for £1 as it does a better job and is much cheaper.

Oh doesn't this purple foundation sponge look so cute on my pile of seashells. This one stood out to me from other make up sponges because of it's peculiar egg shape and because it was in my favourite colour. For £5.99  from TK Maxx I decided to treat myself and it's turned out to be great for applying thick foundations that are difficult to spread. I like to squeeze a blob of foundation on the back of my hand and dab it on with this sponge. This gives me even, non-streaky coverage which I find difficult to do with a typical foundation brush. It's easy to wash and dries quite quickly so I can clean it after every use making it more hygienic than using a make-up brush that I would only wash once every 1-2 weeks.

I am one of those people who have wet hair in the face syndrome which can be a nuisance when trying to apply make-up. This ultra soft, pink microfibre make-up headband from Amazon was a good solution but it can make my hair a little flat and frizzy if I let it dry in place like that. The main reason I purchased this however, was to stop my flat-ironed hair from getting wet whenever I washed my face every morning and night. In the shower/bath I like to wrap my hair in a microfibre turbie towel and use this headband over the edge to cover any stray baby hairs poking out. We all know what happens when flat-ironed curly hair gets wet....POOF and you're suddenly a giant brown  haired (in my case) poodle. Unfortunately chocolate candyfloss not my favourite look so this head band is a ghd addict's life saver.

I would like to take a moment to talk about metal free hair ties and my experiences with them so far. The one on the left is from Claire's accessories and these ones break so easily (see picture below), the ones on the right (more rectangular) are from superdrug and are a lot more robust and resistant. You know how bobbles/hair ties stretch over time with use, well the superdrug ones are so strong that I haven't seen any of them get worn out. They are very resistant which is more than I can say for the bobbles from Claire's accessories.

I was so miffed off when this happened because I knew I couldn't use it any more in case the ragged edges broke my hair. It's not just this bobble but almost all of them from Claire's accessories and you can see why because the superdrug ones seem to be more tightly woven making them much stronger.

I love it when I  find things that I wasn't even looking for. These baby wipes are free of parabens and what not and they come in a massive pack of 63 wipes for one pound each or 4 for £3 from the Co-operative. I prefer the fragrance free ones since the fragranced ones smell funny. At least I know one thing I can use when I eventually have a little bundle of joy, hopefully there will be more natural baby products around by then.

That's it!!!! no more junk to natter on about.........

for now at least, 

if you think this is a lot then say hello to my 10 bottles of conditioner.......

You can see I've already reviewed a few but I'm no where near finished. The two tubes in the top left are the Timotei organic shampoos. As for the conditioners I'm currently using the green Timotei health and shine conditioner which is the third one along in this line of product junkieness.

I hope you enjoyed reading this and if you made it to the end then you must be thinking I need to go to shopping  rehab. 

If you want to see what I think of the conditioners I have lined up then be sure to subscribe by email or follow me on bloglovin. I can't seem to find any reviews on the gum hair conditioners so if anyone has any thoughts on them I'd love hear all about it.