Simple, Sanctuary and SebaMed

Products 1

I totally love the Innisfree Bija It’s a Real Squeeze Face MasksA refreshing face mask made from the torreya oil to clear your skin! The Jeju green complex consists of green tea, tangerine, cactus, camellia leaves, and orchids to keep your skin healthy. This triple-layer sheet has a long-lasting moisturizing effect so that the essence can gradually be absorbed into the skin. I use this whenever my skin feels dry or when there are blemishes lurking and it just feels totally wonderful, plus it clears problems up in double quick time. My skin feels so soft after this one – I love it! Masks cost £1 at the Innisfree shop and I already have back-ups.

The Pixi Glow Tonic is a product I’m in two minds about: This best selling, cult favourite exfoliating toner perfects skin tone and texture, resulting in a healthy glow. Aloe vera, ginseng and botanical extracts work together to soothe and treat skin while 5% glycolic acid accelerates cell renewal. Alcohol-free and gentle on all skin types. Sometimes I think it’s great and really perks my face up and at other times I wonder if it’s too harsh. I have a couple of bottles still to get through, so lots of time to make my mind up! It costs £18 for 250ml at Marks and Spencer – so maybe a bit pricey if I’m not totally in love with it …

I always use the Simple Kind to Eyes Eye Make Up Remover Pads for my eye-make up, whether waterproof or not: Simple Kind To Eyes Eye Make-Up Remover Pads now with vitamin goodness are the perfect blend of cleansing and vitamin goodness to remove even waterproof mascara. These pads won’t sting or irritate your delicate eyes. Perfect for even sensitive skin. These ones are very gentle and do the job with no fuss, so I don’t use anything else. They cost £4.19 for a pack of 30 pads at Boots.

The DHC Velvet Skin Coat came as a sample product in a beauty package I received recently: Prepare your skin for pristine make-up application; unique transparent, powdery gel texture helps temporarily fill in fine lines; apply before foundation or wear alone for a flawless, natural look. I was deeply confused as I thought it was a BB Cream so started using it as that before I realised what I’d done, LOL! It’s a primer! It seems okay but didn’t really leap out at me so I won’t be trying a full size version. You can buy it at Amazon for £18.90 for a 15g tube, which is ridiculously expensive really.

Products 2

I’m nothing without my year-round daily dose of Haylief Hay Fever/Allergy tablets: Loratadine can relieve allergic symptoms due to hayfever and other airborne allergies such as house dust mite and pet allergies, plus allergic skin conditions including rash, itching and urticaria (hives); works within minutes and delivers a full 24 hours relief – without making you drowsy. This is a pretty decent hay fever tablet and I have already stocked up on another batch of them – okay, they don’t deal with the serious allergy stuff I have so I go on to my super-powerful pills at that point, but they’re pretty good for normal, everyday use. I do mix and match them with others of course, but that just helps me health-wise. You can get them from Amazon for £2.45 for 30 tablets.

Colgate Sensitive Pro-Relief Whitening Toothpaste has pride of place in my bathroom: Most other sensitive toothpastes primarily numb the pain; Colgate® Sensitive Pro Relief™ + Whitening works by plugging the channels that lead to sensitive tooth nerves, to block the pain; with regular use, it builds a long-lasting protective barrier that acts like a seal against sensitivity; its low abrasive formula gently effectively removes stains, helping to restore the natural whiteness of your teeth. This works really well and I use it every night – I add in another similar product in the morning. It helps to desensitise my teeth which basically makes life a lot happier, LOL! I already have 2 spares in the cupboard. You can get this at Boots for £3.80 for a 75ml tube, but there’s a 2 for £5 offer on at the moment, so stock up early!

I’ve written about the SebaMed Clear Face Care Gel loads of times: Panthenol supports the healing of acne lesions; hyaluronic acid increases the moisturizing binding capacity of the skin; aloe barbadensis soothes irritated skin; free from oils and emulsifiers; allantoin smoothens rough scaly skin. I always use this on my spots or blemishes at night and it really works. I also use it on my chest and back and it keeps my skin a lot clearer. Result! You can buy it at Amazon for £5.55 for 50ml, and it’s brilliant!

I was very excited about the Body Shop Pink Grapefruit Gel-Lotion as I was going through my grapefruit-for-health phase: Full of pink grapefruit seed oil, our softening Pink Grapefuit Body Lotion will hydrate and nourish your skin. Your skin will be wrapped in moisture, with a sweet fruity scent; body lotion hydrates skin; 24hr moisture; fresh gel lotion; quickly absorbed; Community Trade honey from Ethiopia. I’m so over that phase now and I’m glad I’ve finished this one though it’s perfectly okay, if you really like grapefruit! It’s just a bit TOO grapefruit for me, even in the mornings when I need to be alert, LOL. You can get it at the Body Shop for £8.50 for 250ml.

The Sanctuary Cleansing Burst Body Wash came in a bundle of products at Christmas: Sanctuary Body Wash is an aromatic body wash infused with essential oils and spices to gently cleanse and condition, whilst moisturising capsules of sesame oil and jojoba burst on the skin to help leave it feeling soft, silky smooth and subtly scented. I was fooled by the inclusion of jojoba oil which is very good for the skin, forgetting this is Sanctuary and so it smells like the 1970s, yuk! I really disliked the scent and was so glad when it was finished. I won’t be buying this again! If you like the 1970s, then you can get this one at Boots for £6.00 for 250ml, and there’s even a 3-for-2 offer on all Sanctuary products. But you’d really have to be desperate …

Ah, Eos Vanilla Mint lip balms: aren’t these a bit of a con? You pay all that cash for a pretty looking lip salve which does exactly the same as all the other lip salves in existence, but at a much higher price. The taste is also so subtle that it’s hard to tell flavour what it is at all. But if you’re sold on the packaging, then you can get it at Amazon for £6.99 for 25oz. What was I thinking? I still have some of these left in the same and different flavours which I bought during my crazy Eos phase, but I won’t be bothering again …

Have a fabulous Sunday, everyone!

Anne Brooke Books 

Mists, Masks and Matis

Products I Love

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Hope everyone has had a happy Christmas! I’ve had a great time, partly because I’ve LOVED a lot of products I’ve used up this week, hurrah!

The Innisfree Bija Sheet Mask is lovely, and I’ve used it before. It’s great for my acne-prone skin, the mask stays on easily and it’s incredibly softening and refreshing. You can get 1 for £1.00 at the Innisfree site but I buy mine at Ebay and have already restocked. I’m not even a fan of face masks, LOL, but this one is an exception.

Keeping with the acne solution theme, SebaMed Clear Face Gel is just marvellous – though I use it as a spot gel rather than as a gel for the whole face. On the other hand, I might try using it as it’s supposed to be used for once and see how it goes – it’s not at all drying but it does the job I want it to very well. Again, I have already restocked this from Amazon where you can buy 50ml for £5.55. A bargain and one I definitely recommend.

The Neutrogena Concentrated Unscented hand cream is a MUST, at all times of the year for me, but absolutely vital in these cold winter months. I always use it in the mornings as it’s just so good. You can get this for £2.77 for 50ml from Boots at the moment as they’re having a special 25% Neutrogena discount – so well worth popping this in your trolley.

The Roger & Gallet Fig Extract Hand Cream is a new one on me and I have loved it. Roger & Gallet is my new (to me) Rising Star beauty company! The smell is subtle –  fig isn’t my favourite scent – but the quality of the cream is brilliant. I will be buying more of this, but think I will try a different scent just to see what it’s like. This one is £6 for 30ml from FeelUnique and I admit I will buy this hand cream again even though I rejected the Body Shop 30ml hand creams which are only £4 – yes, I am a hypocrite!! – but R&G is just so much better. You get what you pay for, LOL.

I have liked using The Body Shop Smoothing Eye Cream and it has been quite effective, but for £16(!!!) for a mere 15ml, I’m afraid I won’t be restocking. I think I must have got this in a half-price offer or something, as I certainly wouldn’t have considered it otherwise. Still, if you have spare cash, then you might like to try this – or even better send me the spare cash and I can spend it wisely for you!…

The Vichy Normaderm Anti-Blemish Care came as one of my monthly free FeelUnique samples and I do like it, though I don’t necessarily love it. I did a tidy up of all my beauty products this week (yay, me!) and found a full size product  ready to be used, so no need to think about buying any more. You can find it at Superdrug for £10.85 for 50ml – which is about £3 cheaper than at Boots. Good old Superdrug!

Due to the Christmas excesses (any alcohol- or chocolate-free days, anyone? Um, no, me neither …!!), I have treated myself to the 7th Heaven Nut Oil Mask which is fabulous. A great smell, and it contains marula oil (I really rate this for calming things down), and it clarifies and softens my skin – yes, I will be restocking this one, though I have loads of 7th Heaven masks in my cabinet which are now in one place (see note re the Beauty Tidy above …) waiting to be enjoyed. At the moment it’s not available at Amazon, but you can pick these up really cheaply at supermarkets and at Ebay for only about £1.00 per mask. I get 2 uses out of each.

I have LOVED the Avene Thermal Spring Water spray for absolutely ages, even though I don’t think it’s very popular now, but it still does the trick for me in terms of soothing my skin quickly. I’ve not restocked this yet, however, as I have a couple of new facial sprays to play with, but I’m sure it’s a product I’ll come back to in the end. You can buy this at Boots for £10 for 300ml, which I think is pretty good for a branded product.

I think this is my last Guinot sample and this time it’s their Dry Skin Face Cream – it’s been quite nice to use and I do like the delicate scent, but at £24.95 for 50ml at the AllBeauty site, I think I’ll be giving it a miss. I’ll probably pick up another sample at some point though (wicked me!)…

Finally, Matis is a new brand for me, and I have really enjoyed their Hyaluronic Performance Cream as it goes on so beautifully and seems to make my skin feel so much better. But – alas and alack!! – it’s a whopping £55.14 for 50ml at Amazon and I don’t think my bank balance can take it! I can still recommend it though – and if you get it, I shall have to sneak round and steal a swipe or two when you’re not looking …

Products I Don’t Like

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I picked up the DD Anti-Ageing Cream from Superdrug a while back and all I can say is that it’s okay, but not as good as my usual CC creams which I mix with my foundation. I think it’s just too watery and doesn’t smooth over imperfections very well. However, it claims to do marvellous things, so perhaps someone else will have better success with it. At a mere £4.95 for 50ml with the current Superdrug half-price offer, it’s worth a go.

Now, here’s a list of La Roche-Posay fails, sad to say – as I have other products from them that I totally LOVE, but these aren’t they. The Toleriane Ultra Eye Contour Gel only came in a 2ml sample which isn’t enough for a pinhead really – but I didn’t rate it much, I’m sorry to report. You can find it at Boots for £14.90 for 20ml. Hmm, not sure it will be worth it …

In similar fashion, the Toleriane Ultra Intense Soothing Care was a ridiculously small sample and didn’t leave any great impression on me. Actually, I can’t remember a thing about it, to be honest, but as it was only 2ml, I might well have blinked and missed it. If you fancy giving it a go, you can find it at Escentual Beauty for £17.50 for 40ml – though if you wait until January, you can get one-third off ALL La Roche-Posay products, so don’t click too soon! A special mention for Escentual for actually telling us that before we buy – well done, folks!…

Finally, in this section, I was so looking forward to trying my sample of the Effaclar Duo+ as I’ve heard amazing things about it wherever I travel on the Interweb thingy. La R-P must have been feeling generous (not!) as this sample was actually a whole 3ml – well, perish me timbers, me hearties, as they say!! Whatever next? Maybe La R-P might ease the purse strings a tad and give us decent-sized samples we can properly test out? Don’t hold your breath … Anyway, this did nothing for me and indeed it vanished into my skin and did zilch – if you see what I mean. That saves me a bit of money then, hey ho. You can get this at Boots for £15.50 for 40ml, and everyone else but me loves it!

Happy New Year to you all, and I wish you a fabulous start to 2017!

Anne Brooke Books

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tea Tree and a Bit of a Rip-Off

Here are the products I loved this week:

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The Avene Eau Thermale is a facial spray I’ve used for a long time and I really love it – it’s very soothing and I tend to use it several times a day, whatever the season. It’s only £3 from Boots, so well worth it.

I’ve used a couple of masks this week – one is the Innisfree Real Squeeze Bija Mask – which confused me as I didn’t realise it was a sheet mask until I opened it up. However, it’s very soothing indeed and I shall definitely buy more of that one. The other advantage is that you can wear it at the same time as brushing your teeth and it doesn’t slip off, hurrah! What could be better, LOL? NB I bought this one as part of a really cheap set from eBay so that’s good too.

The Montagne Jeunesse Tea Tree Peel-Off Mask is also very cleansing but not in a horrid way -though I must say peel-off masks aren’t my favourite, I will be buying this one again as it made my skin feel refreshed and ready for action. And that’s a rarity at any level! It costs £1 from Boots, but they’re doing a 5 for £4 deal at the moment so I’d stock up if I were you.

Keeping to the tea-tree theme, I’ve just finished using the Boots Tea Tree Cream– which I use for keeping my spots under control in the mornings (I use a stronger product in the evening for overnight healing). I really do like this cream and I will buy it again. It’s priced at £4.39 for 30ml, but there’s a 3-for-2 offer for herbal products and complementary medicines at Boots.

I’ve also been trying out the Dove Invisible Dry roll-on Anti-Perspirant Deodorant, which is good as it doesn’t leave white marks on my clothes like Mum Deodorant always does. Yes, I think Mum is probably better at keeping me entirely sweat-free, but Dove isn’t bad and at least it’s doesn’t ruin my clothes! This costs £2.30, but Boots are doing a 2 for £3 offer on it, hurrah.

My final favourite of this week is by far the best – I bought a sample product of Dermalogica Ultra-Calming Barrier Repair recently just to have a go – though I know Dermalogica is very expensive and it’s the slippery slope to bankruptcy, LOL. Much to my purse’s horror, it’s TOTALLY brilliant – I use it in the morning after toner and before adding my moisturiser and it just creates an amazing barrier across the skin which feels wonderful and is totally invisible. I LOVE it. I have already bought a full-size version, eek! It’s £36.90 for 30ml (double yikes and call my bank manager) but you can get it cheaper elsewhere if you search the Interweb thingy and it is SO GOOD.

Products Which Have Disappointed Me:

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I’ve already spoken about my disappointment with the Soap & Glory Smooch Operator Lip Balm, but have now finished this jar and it didn’t really impress me any more than at the beginning – which is a shame as I normally rate S&G very highly indeed. Yes, it became easier to get out and onto my lips by the time I was halfway through, but it wasn’t anything above average, in my view. It’s priced at £5.00 which is WAY too much for the minuscule size of jar, but you can buy one and get a second S&G product half price at Boots, so you might want to give it a go? Needless to say, I won’t be joining you …

The funny little pink & silver foil package in the picture isn’t a really odd shaped condom (perish the thought!) but a sample of Lioele Triple The Solution BB Cream – no I’d not heard of them either, but they’re very big in Korea, which is where it’s all happening in the beauty world, I gather. My big problem with it was that I got terribly confused and thought it was a serum so put it on instead of my morning moisturiser and was deeply bamboozled, until I got my glasses out and read the packet properly, deep sigh! What am I like?!? There’s nothing wrong with it, as far as I can tell, but at £54.99(!!) at Amazon, it doesn’t inspire me to rush out and buy it, even in order to use it properly!

However the biggest swizzle-stick disappointment of my week was my ‘sample’ of the new Charlotte Tilbury Scent of A Dream perfume. Call me an old fool (many do), but when I think of sample perfumes, I think of actual mini-handbag size tubes that you can get three or four decent sprays out of. This however is just a piece of card that you have to rub to get the scent off so can’t even put it onto your skin!! How are you supposed to know if it suits you or not? When I pressed my nose to the card, it’s a pretty decent scent – though remarkably like the other 150 million scents there are around, but I was so annoyed by the ‘sample scam’ that I couldn’t be bothered to pay £49 for a 30ml bottle. Who would, harrumph? It certainly hasn’t filled me with the ‘light, power and positivity’ it’s supposed to give me, and in my view a good bottle of champagne will give you far more l, p & p and at half the price, hey ho.

Have a great week!

Anne Brooke Books