Bobbi Brown Intensive Skin Supplement Serum – Review

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For the past 10 weeks I have been testing Bobbi Brown Intensive Skin Supplement as my daily night time serum. Taken from the Bobbi Brown website Intensive Skin supplement is “an advanced, multi-benefit serum that improves skin’s appearance as it helps prevent the visible signs of aging including dark spots and fine, dry lines. White Birch Extract reduces the look of fine, dry lines, while Grape Extract helps clarify and brighten the complexion. After just four weeks’ use, skin looks firmer, smoother, more even-toned and radiant.” I picked this bottle up from my local department store for £45 and have gotten around two thirds of the way through it in 10 weeks.

Packaging: This serum comes in a semi-opaque bronze bottle with a dropper on the top. I would have preferred if the bottle was fully opaque and there was less air exposure so that the anti-oxidants can remain more stable. However, I have to say I really like the way this bottle looks.

Formula: This serum is water based and contains a few silicones and glycerin which gives it a nice texture and leads to a plumping effect on the skin. Grape Extract is said to help even out skin tone and Vitamin C is an anti-oxidant (may not remain stable because of packaging), Castor oil is also present in this formula making it moisturising whilst not being comedogenic.  It is also fragrance-free making it suitable for sensitive skin. The formula is marketed for all skin types.

Texture and appearance: This serum is clear in appearance. The texture is very watery but once I pat it into the skin it becomes quite sticky. This absorbs in within seconds but leaves a sticky residue, which in my opinion makes it unsuitable for daytime.

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Effects: On the very first night of using this I woke up to more balanced skin, my oily T-zone was less oily and my cheeks were more hydrated. I also had a big red spot on my left cheekbone which disappeared within 2 days of using this and an overall reduction in redness. I’ve been using this only at nighttime only and my skin looks and feels plump and evenly toned. Together with my Paula’s Choice BHA liquid this has reduced the bumpy texture in my T-zone as well. If you have mature or dry skin however this may not be moisturising enough.

Having used this serum for a while now I can say that my skin looks more balanced and the serum has complimented the rest of my skin care routine. I know that this serum is one that I can go back to should my skin break out but I’m not sure I would necessarily purchase it again as it didn’t make me say “wow” unlike Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair.  I experienced balancing in my skin making it perfect for combination/ oily skin and an overall reduction in redness which also makes it suitable for sensitive skin. It is simple and effective skin care with some great ingredients which prevents ageing. Based on that I recommend it if you have troublesome combination-oily skin that is prone to breakouts.

Bobbi Brown BB Cream SPF 35 (Medium to Dark) – Review

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Taken from the Bobbi Brown website:

“Moisturise, perfect and protect-instantly and over time. Now it’s easier than ever to get great skin with Bobbi Brown’s new BB Cream SPF 35. Inspired by a skincare/makeup hybrid that’s a cult favorite in Asia, this formula combines moisturiser, treatment, SPF and a lightweight foundation in one. Plus, it’s available in nine skin tone correct shades carefully formulated by Bobbi herself. Consider it your skin’s new best friend.

The secret to its multitasking magic: Water-attracting molecules boost hydration; light reflective pearls brighten dull skin; botanical extracts and caffeine reduce discolouration and redness; pore-reducing peptides minimise fine lines; and finally, broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection and antioxidants fend off future damage.”

I purchased this BB Cream at my local department store for £29.00. BB Creams are great because they moisturise the skin, contain anti-oxidants and also SPF. I’ve been using this same tube since April 2014 and nearly a year on I still have a quarter of the tube to go which makes this great value for money. There are nine shades to choose from and the shade range is quite forgiving. I was matched to Medium-Dark. This shade matches best to those who wear between Honey and Golden in Bobbi Brown foundation.

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Packaging: The packaging of this BB Cream means that there is minimal light and air exposure, therefore the anti-oxidant and SPF ingredients stay stable. I like products that come in tubes as they are more much hygienic too.

Formula: The active sunscreen ingredients in this product are : Octinoxate 7.5%, Octisalate 4%, Oxybenzone 2.5%, Titanium Dioxide 1.1%. I’m not a huge fan of chemical sunscreens and would prefer to see more Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide in the formula, nonetheless this has decent UVB and UVA protection. The dimethicone present in the formula gives the cream a nice slip. Also the added anti-oxidants are a great to prevent premature ageing.

Fragrance: This product has no fragrance making it non-irritant and suitable for sensitive skin. This is a big pro for me when choosing skincare/make-up.

Feel/Texture:  This BB cream is very thick and moisturising. For my skin I need less than a pea size amount. I find that it is quite difficult to blend without streaks, it is best blended with a buffing face brush or fingers. The finish is dewy and looks skin-like.

I use this BB Cream sort of like a foundation for everyday use, meaning I wear it on top of my anti-oxidant serum and sunblock moisturiser. The reason being that in order to get all of the sun protection from a BB cream alone you would have to use a LOT of product and this cream is way too heavy for that.  The coverage is light, it won’t cover hyper-pigmentation or spots (I rarely get them), but it does even out my skin tone. I really like how this looks on my skin immediately after I  powder down the T-Zone, after first application.

I have combination skin and I find my T-Zone gets very oily within 4 hours  of using this. By the end of the day my skin is shiny and dewy, I don’t particularly mind myself but it’s something to keep in mind if you’re not a fan of the dew. Also this cream oxidises and separates a bit after 8 hours, less so if you don’t wear sunblock underneath.

I would recommend this BB Cream for daily use as it has some good moisturising and protective ingredients, it is catered to those with dry/mature, sensitive skin. If you’re oily you’re better off avoiding this one. Due to the low amount of coverage it should only be used by those who have good skin but just wants some extra protection and light coverage. I would recommend wearing an SPF underneath the cream for some extra protection.

http://www.bobbibrown.co.uk/product/2573/21694/Skincare/Moisturisers/Face/BB-Cream-SPF-35/New-Shades/index.tmpl 

What is your favourite BB cream? Comment below and let me know 🙂

Jay x

Paula’s Choice Resist Weekly Resurfacing Treatment 10% AHA (Glycolic Acid)

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It’s been a while since I exfoliated my skin with a scrub. The reason being that scrubs/microbead exfoliators will successfully remove the topmost layer of skin for a short period but don’t have any long term benefits. Furthermore they can actually cause damage to the skin by making small lacerations on the skin surface. AHA (alpha hydroxy acid) chemical exfoliants are a step up from scrubs which don’t cause any damage to the skin whilst exfoliating and are beneficial to building new healthier skin.

AHA is commonly used in salons as a chemical peel but in higher concentrations (40%+) as it is proven to penetrates the skin to produce keratin and collagen. 10% AHA Glycolic Acid from Paula’s Choice is an effective and safe version to use at home but should not be used more than once a week. If you experience any sensitivity or redness the frequency should be reduced.

Taken from the Paula’s Choice website:

“This exclusive, extraordinary resurfacing treatment is an exfoliant formulated to reveal youthfully radiant skin overnight. It couples age-fighting antioxidants with 10% glycolic acid—ingredients proven to stimulate healthy collagen production and reduce wrinkles. A unique liquid delivery system, along with innovative soothing anti-inflammatory ingredients, guarantees impressive results that are visible from the first application. In less than two weeks your skin will experience improved texture, color, tone, and a noticeable reduction in the appearance of wrinkles. With ongoing use, skin becomes firmer and is better able to further resist the signs of aging.”

This chemical exfoliant comes as a clear liquid, it does have an unpleasant chemical smell (doesn’t linger) and no added fragrance. During the first few minutes of applying this with a cotton pad I experienced some tingling and itching which quickly subsided. You have to apply this exfoliant after toning and before your serum, avoiding the delicate eye area. If you have sensitive skin it is advised to wash it off your face after 10 minutes, otherwise the product is suitable for all skin types.

I used this product three nights ago and I have to say I am astounded at the results. My skin looked bright and smooth the morning after, just like after a facial, and the results are still visible three days on! After using this exfoliant I don’t think I’m going back to using the scrubs anymore as this is a much more effective and long-term solution to my anti-ageing concerns. One thing to note when using AHA exfoliants is to ensure you always wear a 25+ SPF cream during the day as they can make you photo-sensitive.

Jay x

Lancome Advanced Genifique Youth Activating Concentrate – Review

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Taken from the Lancome website: “Want glowing skin in 7 days? Here’s your answer in a bottle. This innovative serum soaks into skin, targeting the 10 key signs of youth: texture, resiliency, elasticity, firmness, sagginess, fine lines, wrinkles, radiance, even skin tone, and clarity, with noticeable results in just 7 days. Advanced Génifique is the perfect first step after cleansing to reveal smoother, more radiant skin for all ages, ethnicities, and skin types. With an exclusive self-loading dropper, Génifique delivers the ideal dosage to bring back the light into your skin”.

I bought a 20ml bottle of this serum from Feel Unique for £29.00. I’ve been using this serum daily morning and night for two weeks now and I feel as though I have used the product long enough to give you my informed opinion on it.

Packaging : I like the packaging of this product, the glass bottle feels very luxurious and looks great on my vanity. The bottle comes with a dropper that dispenses just the right amount of serum for your face and neck. Because the bottle is made of glass it may make travelling with it difficult.

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Formulation: This serum has a couple of good ingredients in it like Sodium Hyaluronate (Hyaluronic Acid- skin moisturiser), Adenosine (helps defend skin against free radical damage by aiding antioxidants) and Ascorbyl Glucoside (Vitamin C). There are some bad ingredients in this product too. There is alcohol in this serum which for me is a major no-no in skin care. Citronellol (fragrance) and Parfum. These three ingredients have the potential to damage and irritate your skin if used over a long term period.

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Texture and appearance: The appearance of this serum is an almost clear liquid. The texture starts of like a normal serum but once you rub it between your palm it melts into a watery consistency. This means that it absorbs very quickly into the skin and feels very light with no sticky feeling afterwards. It has a very smooth finish which I suspect is due to the presence of Dimethicone in the formula.

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Smell: I can’t quite place my finger on the fragrance, it just has that “serum smell”. Either way there is added Parfum/Fragrance in this product making it unsuitable for sensitive skin. Not sure why Lancome added fragrance in this product as it serves no purpose!

Results: The first time I used this product I woke up with brighter skin overnight. However this brightening effect stopped after the first few days and it went back to looking dull. Unfortunately as this has such a light texture I didn’t feel it was hydrating enough. Furthermore it caused a small breakout on my left cheek and chin, I suspect this is due to the perfume or alcohol in the formula. I didn’t notice any plumping of the skin or improvement in fine lines.

Overall verdict: This serum gets a thumbs down from me I’m afraid. I’m trying to cut down on fragranced products as they can cause long term damage to the skin. Also the alcohol in the formula puts me off using it again. Whilst this did cause an immediate overall brightening effect there were no longer term effects that outweight the potential damage the bad ingredients could cause. I would say that the Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair trumps this serum by far.

Jay x

Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II – Review

Hey folks, I bought this serum after much deliberation. Spending £49 on a skin care product was not an easy decision, but I’ve heard many good reviews on Advanced Night Repair and I wanted to give it a go myself. If you’re interested in buying this yourself the following review may help 🙂

Claims: Taken from the Estee Lauder website
• Lines and wrinkles look significantly reduced
• Skin feels smoother, hydrated, stronger.
• Skin looks younger, radiant, more translucent and even toned.
• Helps protect skin’s appearance against environmental damage.
• Helps reduce the look of past damage caused by every major environmental assault.
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Ingredients: This serum contains ChronoluxCB™ Technology, a peptide complex that tricks your skin cells into thinking they’re sleeping, which activates renewal mode. Hyularonic acid which is a great moisturiser.
Bottle: This serum comes in a dark brown semi-opaque bottle with a dropper attached to the cap. I presumed for such a high end product the bottle would be glass but it is in fact plastic and doesn’t feel as luxurious as I would have expected. I use around half a pump for my whole face.

Texture & Appearance: When dispensed out of the dropper the serum is a orange-tint gel. The serum is quite sticky at first but absorbs within seconds when you pat it into the skin.

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Smell: I can’t quite put my finger on the smell, I think it has a citrus fragrance, but this disappears once the product is absorbed.

Benefits: I didn’t notice a huge difference in my skin after the first use of this serum, but after 2-3 weeks I saw an improvement in hydration and slight improvement in firmness of the skin, complexion and radiance. Also the serum didn’t cause any breakouts.

Final verdict: This is the first high-end serum that I have tried and I am quite impressed. It improved the appearance of my skin slightly, but perhaps because I don’t have wrinkles to begin with I didn’t see a significant improvement. I’m not sure I would repurchase this just yet because I would still like to try some of the other best selling serums. This 30ml bottle lasted around 3 months with daily use so it works out to be quite expensive.

If you have any suggestions on what I should try out next please let me know below 🙂

Liz Earle Superskin Moisturiser – Review

Hi ladies and gents! So as you might all know I’m a big Liz Earle fan, therefore I wanted to try something from the Superskin range. A 15ml jar of this moisturiser from John Lewis cost £14.95.

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Superskin Containing high levels of GLA and rich in omega-3, it helps prevent moisture loss and improves skin elasticity, while pomegranate fruit extract and natural source vitamin E, both rich in antioxidants, help protect from environmental damage.Naturally active ingredients include precious cranberry, borage and rosehip seed oils.This is marketing at mature or very dry skin types.

The first thing I noticed upon opening the jar was the smell. Now I’m not one of those people who needs my skincare to smell amazing, in fact I prefer unscented products, but this just smells bad! Further to smelling bad it also lingers on the skin which isn’t great if you’re sleeping next to someone.

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The texture of the moisturiser is nice, it is a white cream which isn’t thick, but is very hydrating. I did find it only a little richer than the original Skin Repair. Also because it is unscented, those with sensitive skin care can use it, I myself am not prone to comedogenic breakouts.

I used this small jar for 2 months as my night time moisturiser and whilst it did hydrate my skin I didn’t find it any more effective than the Skin Repair (normal/combination). I was a bit thrown back by the price as this is only £6 cheaper than the 50ml Skin Repair Moisturiser which means it isn’t great value for money. Overall this wasn’t a great stand-out product for me but maybe if you have sensitive skin it could work for you.

Have any of you tried anything from the Superskin line from Liz Earle? What were your thoughts? Comment below 🙂

Jay x

Nature Republic California Aloe Sunblock SPF 50 PA+++

Hey guys, it’s been a while since I last posted on here. The last two months have been rather hectic, I actually started a new job which is a bit more demanding than the last one so I don’t have as much time or energy to post, but now that I’ve settled in I hope to be writing a lot more.

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Being an oily/combination skinned girl I find it very difficult to find sunblocks that don’t leave my skin greasy, uncomfortable and with a white cast. I recently received this sunblock as a sample and after trying it I had to buy the full size. The full size cost £22 from Amazon for a 100ml bottle.

This sunblock contains ingredients that physically block the sun (UVA and UVB), its active ingredients are Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide. I always opt for these ingredients as opposed to chemical sunscreens. The sunblock factor is SPF 50 which means it is intended for use during periods of long exposure to the sun. It is also PA+++ meaning it has the highest protection against harmful UVA rays. The only ingredient which may raise concern is Aluminium Hydroxide, whilst there is no evidence to show it is toxic, some may prefer not to use this on their skin.

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The first thing I noticed about this cream upon opening the seal was the smell, it has a fresh aloe fragrance which fades after about 10 minutes on the skin. The cream itself has a thick consistency which spreads easily. Once massaged into the skin the initial white cast disappears completely even on my deep tanned skin. The cream feels moisturising but has a semi-matte finish once it dries, which is perfect for those really hot and sweaty summer days.

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Overall I am very impressed with this cream, it has a high SPF and PA rating, ideal for summer use. It doesn’t leave any white cast and it leaves the drier than any other SPF creams I have used before which makes it a perfect make-up base. I would recommend this for anyone with non-sensitive, non-acne prone, oily skin.

Memebox Princess Edition #2 Sleeping Beauty & #3 Rapunzel (Unboxing)

So my Memebox’s arrived last night after a looooong wait. Here are the contents of the Princess Edition #2 Sleeping Beauty and Princess Edition #3 Rapunzel boxes.

Princess Edition #2 Sleeping Beauty

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1) ReinPlatz Intensive Moisture Pack 23g ($4) – Full Size : 20 minutes moisturising foot or hand mask (I got the foot mask)

2) Vellas Night Tight Cream 50ml ($30) – Full Size: Neck cream to prevent sagging of the skin on the neck.

3) D’Ran Aqua Wonder Recovery Eye Cream 25g ($35) – Full Size

4) Dermahouse Aloe Vera Aqua Gel 150ml ($29) – Full Size: Moisturiser for dry and irritated skin

5) e choice Aloe Vera All Care Cream 10g ($3) – Full Size: Cream for dry, damaged skin, heels, nails, lips, around the eyes

6) Dewytree Aqua Collagen Peptide Sleeping Mask 150ml ($28) – Full Size: Sleeping pack to lock in moisture

Total value: $129

Princess Edition #3 Rapunzel

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1) Sally’s box Friendly Argan Hair Mask ($4) – Full Size

2) Elizavecca Collagen Ceramide Coating Protein Treatment 100ml ($34) – Full Size: In shower hair pack

3) Tosowoong 10 Hours 25ml ($12) – Protein hair ampoule to be used overnight to replenish shine

4) L’Cret Hair Color Keeper Treatment Shampoo 300ml ($42) – Shampoo with argan oil for dry and color treated hair

5) Boutique Bebe Hair Salon Vita-Clinic Mist 60ml ($24) – Hair mist to protect hair from further damage

6) ProYou Scalp Nutrition calming Moisture Fluid 150ml ($48) – Morning and night scalp essence to sooth itchy, dry scalps.

Total value: $164

Overall I have to say I’m a bit disappointed with the Sleeping Beauty box. The products don’t feel as luxurious as normal Memeboxes and the values don’t seem realistic. I am however really excited to use the products in the Rapunzel box as the packaging looks great!

Lush Fresh Face Mash (The Sacred Truth) – Review

So I popped into Lush last weekend to exchange my 5 empties to receive a free face mask. I decided to try one that I haven’t tried before called The Sacred Truth. The Sacred Truth is intended to brighten dull, dry, tired looking skin.

Taken from the Lush website:

Revive your complexion with ginseng and ginkgo leaf to boost blood circulation, whilst honey, yoghurt and free range eggs leave skin soft and moisturised. Wheatgrass is full of nutrients to feed your skin, whilst the enzymes in fresh papaya will strip away dead skin, helping to give you a gorgeous glow. Smoothe a generous layer of this mask onto your face and leave for 10 to 15 minutes and let the ingredients get to work before washing off gently with warm water.

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The mask has a really earthy plant like smell, I think the ginseng is quite pungent, but it’s nice nevertheless. Straight out of the fridge this mask feels extremely cooling after a long hot shower. It has a really smooth texture and is light green in colour. After 15 minutes the mask dries completely and is ready to wash off with warm water.

Immediately after washing this mask off I noticed that my skin was much brighter and hydrated. Also the next morning my skin was really plump! The papaya and ginseng gets rid of the skin cells in a gentle way to reveal softer, brighter skin and the shea butter and essential oils gives the skin some much needed hydration. There is also green tea powder in the mask which is a great anti-oxidant. Because this mask is so nourishing you could even use it twice a week as it has great anti-ageing properties.

I’m loving this mask so far and I am going to repurchase soon. It is hydrating and brightening so I would recommend to anyone with dry, dull or mature skin, however I would not recommend to anyone with acne-prone skin as the oils could trigger a break-out.

Jay x