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Monday, 29 July 2013

Clarins golden touch

Summer skin demands a light touch. And that lightness of being should be just enough to up-swing naturally sun kissed tones without being over-powering. Clinging onto popping shades you wore when skies were dark and skin a little pasty can look a little clownish under strong sunlight.

Clarins new Face & Blush Powder from their Graphic Expressions collection is just perfect to add a wholesome sexiness to cheeks. An ultra-lightweight powder, it’s made up of three suits-all-skin-shades. The light beige illuminates, the darker beige evens skin tone, the coral pink blush sculpts whilst the flash of gold adds a beam of light. When swirled over with a soft brush and dusted on, the whole effect is actually quite angelic. Skin looks prettily illuminated. It's a smart combination too see your skin through those last hazy days of summer too. Just heavenly!

Clarins Face & Blush Powder costs £30 and is available from August.

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Behind the mask

I love hiding behind a mask. Pick the right one and it can be like yoga for the skin leaving the complexion feeling relaxed and looking rejuvenated. I have several on the go at once depending on how my skin feels, and to me they’re the cornerstone of a good skincare regime.

Reading about Clayspray Glow a red clay mask with cacao piqued my interest, and although I have memories of clay masks drying very hard on my face when I was a teenager, I reminded myself formulations have come a long way since then. Unusual for a masque it’s a spray, and goodness does it spray. All over my bathroom! Not putting me in the best of beauty moods, after I mopped up the mess, I began to smooth onto my face. The texture was creamy, but personally the smell was off-putting. I was told it smelt like chocolate, but not to me! By now I had a love/hate relationship with this masque, but the pay-off was how it left my skin. The minerals, cacao, vitamins and magnesium all conspired to leave pores looking perky. Tiredness had evaporated and my skin looking rebooted and yes, glowing. It recommends a weekly skin treatment, so if I master the spraying action along with attuning my nose to the smell my skin can look forward to getting its glow on!


Clayspray Glow Red Clay with Cacaco Masque retails for £44.50 available from

Thursday, 18 July 2013

Bourjois nail it!

A few years ago the most edgy nails would get was wearing a French manicure, today polish is an art in itself. It’s not just the nail bars that are getting creative either, the latest formulations and tools available on counter allow everybody to be their own nail technician.

At the (finger) tip of such innovation is Bourjois. Their nail enamels have consistently kept up with trends and this season they’ve topped it with Manucure Toppings! Disco-tastic in all of their sparkly lovely-ness, these are fine, brightly coloured pearls to dress the nails. Choose from three colours with luminous golden accents and silver tints that you sprinkle onto your wet nail enamel. The effect is one of glittery wonder that gives nails a 3D dimension. Finish off with a thin layer of transparent top coat for a lasting funky finish.

For super nail enthusiasts look out for their new Nail Art Dotting Tool. A double ended pen offering two dot sizes, simply dip into your nail polish du jour and dot and colour like crazy! For nailspiration go to Bourjois Facebook page to see some nail art tutorials.

Mancure Toppings £6.99
Dotting Tool £3.99 from and

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Kiehl's lighten up

For those of you who are playing catch- up with sun damage – and let’s face it, those brown Jackson Pollock type splodges can emerge and take us by surprise on even the best protected skins, then Kiehl's Clearly Corrective Deep Moisture Clarifying Cream can help balance out uneven skin tone.

Its weapon of mass destruction is their activated vitamin C formulation that helps reduce the appearance of dark spots and even out discolouration. White birch and peony extracts make good at readdressing the problem too, and hydration is super-charged – 24 hours super charged! Use before sun protection and bag it as your new clever correction cream.

 Kiehl’s Clearly Corrective Deep Moisture Clarifying Cream, £41
Available in August nationwide.

Sunday, 14 July 2013

Aveda's head start

Summer is fraught with many potential hair disasters. I’ve seen green hued hair from when bleach meets chlorine and a tear inducing cut from a local hairdresser. But for most of us it’s the humidity, where hair width can increase ten fold, and the very thing that makes the summer – the sun.  Yes, we love basking in it, but just like the skin, hair is open to abuse from UV rays, and once the holidays are over, if hair has been neglected, your barnet can look bleached out, dried up and frazzled. Not a good look.

One protector I will be chucking into my beach bag this holiday is Aveda’s Sun Care Protective Hair Veil. In the past I’ve used hair protectors and they’ve been way too greasy and stubborn, making it a chore to wash out in the evening. This one is super light and spritzs on an invisible screen lasting up to 16 hours. It makes for a slick look too, so frizz is kept at its minimum. Water resistance, taking a dip in the pool isn’t a threat and helps protect from colour fade. Most of us have our hair colour done before we go away, so how annoying to see those expensive highlights lose their punch. UVA and UVB filters are derived from wintergreen and cinnamon bark oils and there’s an anti-oxidizing blend of green tea extract too. It smells gorgeous with organic essential oil extracts of neroli and ylang-ylang. So even if you’re not holidaying tropical, your hair will smell like it is!  

Aveda Sun Care Protection Hair Veil costs £21.50

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Clinique's big moisturizing makeover

Yellow as custard, but certainly not skin cowardly, Clinique’s Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion has become a cult classic since it launched in the swinging sixties. It could have even been your first introduction to a ‘serious’ dermatological developed moisturiser. Today, it’s still Clinique’s leading product and its biggest seller. So, on that bombshell why have they decided to reformulate it and introduce Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion+. What does that + mean?
Well, it certainly wasn’t on a throwaway decision. Just over six years in the making, it’s taken three formulating dermatologists, 53 researchers, 100 formula trials and over 1,600 women of different skin types and ethnicity across five countries s to arrive at the results. Phew! The said results benefit skin by creating a better resistance against environmental slayers. In essence, the formulation has been modernised for the modern world. Clinique’s guiding dermatologists observed that they were seeing more patients with skin troubles such as redness, itching, breakouts, dullness and dryness…all symptoms that equalled a weakend barrier. To address, it now has a barrier strengthening complex along with new moisturising ingredients including hyaluronic acid, glycerine and urea. With super charged moisturising abilities along with re-booting qualities, it makes for a formula that’s Dramtically Different. And that’s a + sign in my skin book!

 Clinique’s Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion+ costs from £17.00 for 50ml.

Monday, 8 July 2013

Your skin's comfort blanket

You know those tubes of something or another you have floating around the bathroom cabinet that seemingly comes to the rescue of anything?  Well this is one of them. La Roche-Posay Cicaplast BaumeB5 is a multi-purpose repairing balm for everyday skin irritations. The active ingredient is  B5 that stands for panthenol. A  biologically stable form of pro-vitamin B5,  this formula consolidates the highest dose every achieved in a dermo-cosmetic treatment. 

I’ve been using it for all manner of things. A rash of redness around the nose, roughness on heels and flaky skin on lips, all of which have reacted amazingly well to this hydrating French balm that helps reduce water loss and maintain skin elasticity. Paraben, fragrance and lanolin free it’s brilliant for the touchiest of skins and, more importantly is cosmetically pleasant with no greasy aftermath post application. Apply thickly for areas that need plenty of TLC or a fine layer for an instant dressing effect. It's an aaahhh in a tube! 

La Roche-Posay Cicaplast BaumeB5 costs £13.00
Stocked at pharmacies and larger Boots.

Friday, 5 July 2013

You glow girl!

A self confessed lover of Alpha H concentrated skincare products – concentrated meaning they give more bang for your buck in terms of ingredient percentages , I was recently introduced to their Liquid Gold Perfecting Daywear with Mineral Bronzing Beads. Now, personally I don’t go big on bronzing products beyond a little powder,  as quite honestly I’ve seen so many bronzing disasters, I’d rather steer clear. But this lady is for turning, and I’d thought I’d give it a whirl.

I had no concerns about the Perfecting Daywear part of the formula. Alpha H is based on glycolic acid and mingled with the other key ingredient liquorice, work to brighten, resurface and refine pore size. Peptides help to optically diffuse the appearance of pesky lines. As with all modern thinking anti-ageing products, hyaluronic acid is also in the mix, its USP being it attracts and binds youth inducing moisture. So far, so  good.

As for the built-in glow factor, it couldn’t be more skin savvy. Microencapsulated bronzing spheres burst on application and release a blend of mineral pigments and natural light-reflecting particles. It’s described as a ‘made-to-measure’ glow, and I agree. It just lifts the skin to a higher plane whilst looking beyond natural. It’s a serum, so apply underneath your moisturiser for an extra skin boost. It's a product that's now a staple in my gleam team!

Alpha-H  Liquid Gold Perfecting Daywear, £39