Anti-Wrinkle & Anti-Stress Bonanza

Dove Firming Lotion

Dove Firming Nourishing Lotion: Dove firming nourishing body lotion is ideal formulation combines rich nourishment and white tea extract; skin elasticity is boosted and skin is more toned only 24 hours after a single application; contains the deep care complex with natural skin nutrients and rich essential oil; gradually improves skin starting deep down; dermatologically tested. I quite like this firming lotion – it’s good for those crinkly thighs for sure but I suspect that the Dove Uplifted Lotion might be just that little bit better! However, I have got some back-ups for this one, and I’ll mix and match the two products in their turn. You can get this one for £5.50 for £250ml at Amazon.

Freeman Mask

Freeman Anti-Stress Clay Mask: This calming mask instantly absorbs excess oil; clarifies and purges clogged pores; Dead Sea Minerals contain natural supplements that are essential for maintaining healthy skin; Sea Salts help replenish and balance moisture; Lavender and Bergamot promote relaxing aromatherapy. I love this mask – I even love the turquoise colour of it! It’s easily spreadable, non-drying and leaves the skin smooth and clear. Just make sure you wash it all off before you go to bed, LOL! You can get the full-sized tube (which I also have) at Amazon for £4.00 for 175ml. A real bargain.

Masque Anti Wrinkle

Masque Bar Anti-Wrinkle Sheet MaskMasque Bar Anti-Wrinkle Sheet Mask is a collagen-infused facial sheet mask that contours to your face to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles and hydrate your skin, leaving it feeling soft and looking refreshed. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this mask!! So much so that I’ve actually used one twice this week – once when I was brushing my teeth – okay a bit awkward with a sheet mask, but I managed, LOL. Then I was just SO impressed with the magical disappearance of my wrinkles (how did that happen??!!?) that I used it again for a full 15 minutes in the bath this morning – and the results are even better! I’ve always been a bit dubious about collagen in the past, but now I’m a real fan and am going to use this one once a week – I already have back-up stock, hurrah! You can get it at Boots for £9.99 for a set of 3 masks and I can’t recommend it too highly!

Savlon Healing Gel

Savlon Advanced Healing GelPromotes FASTER healing. Helps REDUCE the likelihood of SCARRING. This is an old faithful which I’ve always given house-room to and it really helps with spots and blemishes. It feels lovely and soothing on the skin too, which is fabulous. I use some each morning. You can get it at Boots for £3.43 for 50g, as there is a 20% discount there on selected Savlon products at the moment.

Ted Baker

Ted Baker Body WashSparkling fruity grapefruit, mandarin and mango are teamed with subtle floral notes of neroli and jasmine, while the base of patchouli, sandalwood and musk completes the scent. I wasn’t expecting to like this very much as I’m not a fan of Ted Baker products but I started using it as it was a Christmas gift and actually, I do like it very much. The scent is lovely and floral, but not too sweet, and it lathers up very well indeed. I’m not sure I love it enough to repurchase it but I wouldn’t kick it out of bed if it turned up again, LOL! You can get it at eBay for £7.99 postage-free.

Have a great Sunday and, of course, happy St George’s Day!

Anne Brooke Books

 

Cucumber and Eucalyptus

Cucumber mask

I did enjoy this Freeman Cucumber Peel-Off Mask, even though I don’t like peel-off masks! Freeman facial peel-off cucumber mask is a refreshing facial mask that gently peels away impurities, while cucumber, melon and ginseng extracts leave your skin silky smooth. It is made with natural, botanical ingredients to help you look and feel your best. Clarifies and Renews Skin. I must admit I wasn’t really looking forward to using it as I thought the smell of cucumber might be too much, but actually it was very subtle and fresh, which was great. The only problem I had is that I used half of it and then stored it away in a plastic bag to use the other half later, but I didn’t keep it upright and it’s very fluid, LOL! So yes, I lost the rest of the pack which was a shame, but I would probably buy the full product at some point. You can get it at Amazon for £3.13 for 150ml

DD Cream

I picked up this Superdrug DD Anti-Ageing Cream in Light a while back as I was curious as to what it was like – I’m a user of BB Creams and CC Creams, but this was my first DD cream. Superdrug Anti-Ageing SPF20 DD Cream provides sheer illuminating coverage, which immediately conceals discolouration and imperfections, while helping to neutralise and protect the skin from daily aggressions, preserving skin’s youthfulness. With UV protection to help defend against premature skin ageing. The 7-in-1 formula also provides all day moisturisation and helps to strengthen the skin’s barrier whilst Glycolic Acid gently dissolves surface skin cells helping to diminish the appearance of pores, hyperpigmentation and fine lines over time. Benefits: Promotes Skin Detoxification; Protects and Strengthens Skin; Effectively Conceals Imperfections; Resurfaces and Refines Skin and Pores; Diminishes Discoloration, Fine lines and Wrinkles; Provides All Day Moisturisation; SPF21. I wasn’t really that impressed with this one, I’m afraid – not enough coverage and no staying power. I used it up only when I knew I was staying in for the night, LOL! You can get this at Superdrug for £4.95 for 50ml – which is their half-price offer at the moment, but I’d advise spending your cash elsewhere …

Dentyl

I use Dentyl Active Plaque Fighter Smooth Mint Mouthwash every evening and I love it. It’s alcohol-free which is hugely important to me. Effective alcohol-free mouthwash with active ingredients to keep your mouth clean and healthy; unique formula that powerfully pulls bacteria and debris that can cause bad breath, plaque and gum disease; kills up to 99.9% of oral bacteria in lab tests; soes not sting, tastes great and gives you long-lasting fresh breath. You need to shake it up first to make sure the two parts of it blend properly before you use it, but that’s no problem. I’ve already restocked this one. You can get it for £3.85 for 500ml at Amazon.

Sanex

I love Sanex Dermo Sensitive Shower Cream. It’s brilliant for my sensitive skin on the back, neck and chest areas and I use it every day. There’s no scent and it makes my skin much better. I’m never without a bottle of this one! You can get it at Boots for £3.25 for 500ml and it’s a real bargain.

Squeeky Clean

I picked up this tube of Creightons Squeeky Clean Saint or Shimmer Lotion as part of a bargain at Poundland and it’s really nice. Get glam with a glorious glow with Squeeky Clean saint or shimmer lotion. Packed with skin friendlies, vitamin E, coconut oil and sweet almond oil, this divine shimmer lotion gives an instant all over healthy looking glow and leaves skin feeling irresistibly soft and smooth. This has got everything I love in a body lotion – Vitamin E, Coconut Oil and Sweet Almond Oil – hurrah! The scent is very comforting and it’s not too coconut-focused at all. It makes you feel far more glamorous and elegant than the price would have you believe! Yes, there’s a slight shimmer but it’s very subtle so nothing to get concerned about. Next time I’m in Poundland, I shall look for it again. It costs – you guessed it! – £1.00 for 100ml and I recommend it.

Vick

I’m nothing without my Vicks Vaporub! Contains: menthol and camphor to calm a cough; eucalyptus and menthol to relieve nose congestion; eucalyptus to relieve catarrh. I use it every morning on my neck before I go to work, and then every night on my neck, chest and back before I go to bed. I don’t do the steaming suggestion as I just find it too much – I’m very delicate, you know! It’s wonderful for my catarrh and helps keep everything under control. I’ve already got a back-up. You can pick this up at Boots for £4.36 for 100g, and it’s a little miracle.

Have a great weekend and welcome to April!

Anne Brooke Books

 

Grapefruit, Ginger and Peony

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I received another DHC sample package in the post recently – I had the Eye Bright (£19.50 at Amazon), the Deep Cleansing Oil (£23.98 for 200ml at Amazon), and the Face Wash Powder. (£10.50 at Amazon). The Eye Bright was fine, and the Deep Cleansing Oil is okay – I’ve used it before as a first cleanser but I have others I prefer. But it was the Face Wash Powder that was seriously weird! It’s literally a powder that you dab onto your skin and then add water to make it into a foam. I really didn’t like it as it felt disgusting – like making glue on your face, yuk! Personally I’d avoid it, and on the whole I’m still not sold on the DHC brand, LOL!

I also received another sample Lioele Beyond the Solution BB Cream – which I used as it was there, but I’m not rushing out to buy it. It doesn’t seem available at Amazon any more, but I’m not that bothered …

It’s a whole other story for the sample Yves St Laurent Black Opium Nuit Blanche perfume though – I LOVED it! Live the night with BLACK OPIUM NUIT BLANCHE, an electrifying new interpretation of the iconic BLACK OPIUM coffee signature. A seductive white coffee floral fragrance designed to give the wearer a burst of energy to last through the night. NUIT BLANCHE translates to ‘White Night’, a night in Paris once a year when rock chicks take control and make the city their playground until dawn. The iconic white floral heart of the original Black Opium Eau de Parfum is electrified with a burst of energizing aldehydes and aphrodisiac white musk for an all-night adventure. Well, I’m no rock chick and I adored it – a perfect mix of sultry and sweet and strangely right even for the office if you want to go for that essential hint of sophistication. I got loads of compliments on this one! Sadly, it’s way beyond my price range, being £64 for 50ml at Boots, but if you’ve got the cash, then grab this one for sure.

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From the sublime to the ridiculous, I’m nothing without a handful or two of HSL Epsom Salts in my bath – so very cleansing, my dears! And only £10.29 for 3kg at Amazon and I’ve already restocked it.

Meanwhile, me and my super-sensitive teeth absolutely LOVE Sensodyne Pronamel toothpaste – I usually go for the whitening one as it’s really good so I must have picked this one up by mistake at some point. Still good though. It’s only £4.50 for 75ml at Boots, and they have a 2 for £6 offer on Sensodyne toothpaste at the moment – so don’t forget to pick up the whitening one too!

I’ve at last managed to finish off the dreaded second bottle of the frankly appalling VO5 Volume Boost Gel Spray. Does anyone really still believe in this? It’s sticky and doesn’t boost the volume, though the scent isn’t bad. I won’t be bothering again, but if you’re feeling foolhardy, you can get it for £5.98 for 200ml at Amazon and there appear to be only 8 bottles left. Which is surely a blessing, eh.

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I wasn’t really prepared to like the Greenland Fruit Emotions Grapefruit & Ginger Body Butter, but actually it’s not too bad. It’s not available on Amazon any more, but costs 14 Euros at the Greenland site. I think that’s far too pricey for such a small tin and I won’t be bothering again, I think. However, on the plus side, it doesn’t smell cheap, which is great, and it sinks into the skin well.

I totally LOVE the Marks & Spencer Peony Shower Cream – the smell is wonderful and very grown-up too. Sadly, M&S don’t seem to do this separately as it was part of a Christmas set – but I really wish they would produce this on its own and in a bigger tube. I would rush to buy it!

The Olay Firm & Lift Anti-Wrinkle Booster & Firming Serum is quite nice, as well as being a mouthful to say, LOL! I use this in the evenings, after work as a primer for my evening top-up make-up, though I’m not sure I’m going to buy another one, as I have others to use. It costs £4.99 for 50ml at Boots, which I believe is down from £9.99 so do give it a go.

And I absolutely would NOT be without my trusty Max Factor Pan Stik in Fair – it is GENIUS and covers every possible spot, blemish and redness you can imagine. I don’t like using it as a foundation – though I know many people to – as I prefer to have a liquid surface on my face. I use this as a concealer instead and it makes my skin look totally amazing. You can get it for £7.99 for 9g at Boots and it is worth its weight in gold, I tell you!

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Last but not least, my Lancome Love Your Age sample which came in the post last week. I didn’t expect to like it, but actually it’s very good, and certainly smoothes my skin out. I’ve been using it day and night, and am impressed. The Youth Activating Concentrate goes on first, and then is followed by the Renergie Multi-Lift. They make my skin look brighter and smoother without causing any irritation. The only thing I’m not happy about – and which means I sadly won’t be trying out the full-sized products – is the horrendous price! £47.20 for 30ml of the Concentrate, at Boots, and £53.60 for 50ml of the Multi-Lift, again at Boots. Really, you’d have to take out a mortgage! But if I ever won the lottery (which I suppose means actually entering it!), I would buy this set.

As ever, have a beautiful week!

Anne Brooke Books

Wild Rose and Angels

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Mugler Angel Eau de Parfum: Scents: sweet, patchouli, warm spicy, cocoa, caramel and woody. I received this as an incredibly tiny sample that you somehow had to pull out in order to smell it. You couldn’t even get it on the skin! What’s the point of a sample like that? I also broke mine whilst trying to open it so was really cross with it. As far as I can tell, it smells really sweet and sickly and is probably one for the younger woman who doesn’t mind when people around her start fainting, LOL! Definitely NOT one for the office – though on the other hand it depends who you work with … You can find it at Amazon for £36.02 for 25ml.

Tesco Nail Polish Remover: I’ve had this for years and only rediscovered it in the cupboard recently. It’s perfectly okay though not the best nail polish remover I’ve used. I was happy to finish it up though – but be warned, it’s not great at getting the glitter polish off, even if you do use the kitchen foil trick! You can get it at Tesco for £1.25 for 250ml, so a real bargain.

Imperial Leather Sherbet Lemon Shower CreamRefresh your skin with this zesty sherbet lemon shower cream leaving you feeling clean, revived and smelling great. I started off really liking this one as the lemon scent is the perfect balance between sweet and sharp – but I must admit I got a bit bored with it so won’t buy it again. However, if you’re a lemon freak, this is the one for you! It costs £1.00 for 250ml at Boots.

L’Oreal Velvety-Soft Toner: Specially adapted for dry and sensitive skin.Thoroughly cleansed, your skin feels soothed, skin is more supple, softer and brighter, and it feels comfortable and less taut. I didn’t really get on with this one, I have to say, and in the end I threw it away as I just couldn’t bear using it any more. It just feels slimy on my face and left a curious film on my skin that I didn’t take to. I know loads of people like it though, so I’m probably the exception that proves the rule! You can get it at Amazon for £7.48 for 200ml.

Max Factor FaceFinity Compact Foundation in Porcelain (01)A pressed powder which combines the comfort of use with the properties of a liquid foundation, giving you the desired smooth coverage and a satin finish. The Perma-Wear technology provides all-day fade resistant colour and flawless coverage that lasts up to 8 hours. This compact contains SPF 15 which helps to protect your skin from the sun rays. I love this compact and always take it to work with me – I need to touch up a couple of times during the day so it definitely doesn’t last 8 hours, but then again, what does? It gives great coverage and reduces the appearance of redness and scarring. The only problem is that it doesn’t last long and it breaks up easily which is a SERIOUS pain. However, it’s still the best touch-up compact I’ve found for day use. It costs £9.74 for 10g at Amazon which is a ridiculous price, but I still buy it because it’s just so good.

Vanilla Flower Air Purifier Concentrate: this came with my Amos Air Purifier which is just brilliant for helping my breathing at night, and I do really like this scent. I put two or three drops into the water holder every couple of nights and it works like a dream. You can get the whole caboodle at Amazon for £19.99 which is a great bargain for a good night’s sleep without the snorting and gagging, LOL!

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Simply Supplements Menapol Plus Capsules: An invigorating herbal complex that may help to ease women through the uncomfortable transitional period of the menopause. Each MenapolTM Plus EasyGest capsule provides: Red Clover, Liquorice Extract, Dandelion Root, Acai Berry, Soya Isoflavones, Chamomile Extract, Cranberry Extract and Siberian Ginseng. These are really very good – I take one each night and it keeps menopausal and post-menopausal symptoms very much at bay. Even when hot flushes come, they’re much shorter and less dramatic than they used to be, so that’s a definite result! They cost £12.15 for 120 capsules which is a pretty decent price, to my mind.

Baylis & Harding Wild Rose & Raspberry Leaf Cleansing Hand Wash: a luxurious, scented hand wash and fragranced with exotic jasmine and fruity raspberry. It is made with gentle notes of wild rose for a fresh light fragrance. I really liked this one and it’s also very gentle on the hands, which is fabulous. The only problem for me is the enormous size of the pot as it just doesn’t fit on my basin very well. If only they made a smaller size, I’d buy it, but I’m not repurchasing this large one again. I will have to find my subtle rose fix elsewhere! You can buy it at Amazon for £2.15 for 500ml, so a decent price too.

MiaRoma Sweet Almond OilA natural, cold pressed oil with a neutral aroma that provides the perfect base for you to create your own blend of aromatherapy oils to suit your mood. The softening and nourishing effects of sweet almond oil mean it can be used alone as a face or body oil. This oil is totally fabulous for my face and I use it morning and evening just after my toner. I also smear a small quantity on spots and it really helps to heal them very quickly. Result! It costs £7.69 for 200ml at Holland and Barrett, and they’re also running a Buy One Get One Half Price offer at the moment so this is well worth popping into your shopping basket!

HRI Clear Complexion Tablets: Treats skin problems from within; it is used for the symptomatic relief of minor skin conditions such as spots, pimples, blemishes, mild acne and mild eczema; this gentle complementary medicine contains natural active herbs. Contains burdock root.  I use this product regularly and it definitely keeps my skin problems under control. One tablet in the morning and one at night seems to suit me just fine. They cost £5.98 for a pack of 60 at Amazon and I have already restocked them.

Montagne de Jeunesse Dead Sea Mud Pac: Dead Sea Mud draws out impurities and opens blocked pores to give clean, soft skin in a refreshing mud pack; anti stress relief for normal, oily and T-Zone skin; a relaxing ultra deep pore cleanser with Sea Kelp nutrients; contains aromatherapy anti stress oils. I really love the light blue colour of this mud pack – it’s fun! The light scent is also very pleasant and it feels very soothing on my face. I would definitely restock this one at some point though I have loads of these masks at the moment and need to use them up! You can easily make it last for two face packs as there’s loads in the sachet. It costs £1.00 for a 20mg pack at Boots.

Have a beautiful week!

Anne Brooke: Biblical Fiction UK

Feet, Teeth and Sponges

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I’m a huge fan of the La Roche-Posay Serozinc toner. This product is specifically designed to target key signs of oily, blemish-prone skin. The skin looks and feels less shiny and greasy, and also looks mattified. I use this every morning and it’s just bliss spraying it on my face after my shower, particularly as I don’t even have to wipe it around so it saves me that essential microsecond of time, hurrah! It’s also brilliant for my sensitive spot-prone skin. I already have a back-up in place, plus the new one I’m using now. It costs £8.50 for 150ml at Boots but they’re doing a 3-for-2 on selected skincare & No 7 products so a real bargain right now.

My Oral B 35 Medium toothbrush is an absolute necessity for me – the head is quite small so it’s easy to use. Product details: Blue Indicator bristles fade when brush needs to be replaced; ergonomically designed handle for comfort and control; polished end-rounded bristles are gentle on teeth and gums. I change my toothbrush every 3 months and can recommend that everyone does this as after 3 months they don’t work as well. This brush is gentle on my gums but small enough to get into awkward areas around my teeth too. I buy the 2-pack option at Amazon which costs £3.90.

Keeping in the dental area I’ve been using Colgate Sensitive Pro-Relief toothpaste as one of my regular teeth products and it’s totally brilliant! Colgate® Sensitive Pro-Relief™ is clinically proven to provide instant* relief and lasting protection from tooth sensitivity – there is no other product which is more effective. The toothpaste contains arginine, a naturally-occurring amino acid, which, when combined with Calcium Carbonate, blocks and seals the microscopic channels that lead to your tooth nerve centre. I use this each night and it’s wonderful for my sensitive teeth, reducing my pain levels to almost nothing. What’s not to like? The minty taste is great too. It costs £4 for 75ml, but Boots are doing a 2 for £5 offer on this product in all the flavours at the moment, so it’s a great chance to stock up.

I was incredibly hopeful about the This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray. A best-selling, natural sleep aid that will fragrance your bed and calm the nerves. The miracle solution to a good night’s sleep. With this works signature relaxing fragrance, this pillow spray will become your must-have sleep solution. Infused with essential oils of Lavender, Vetivert and Wild Camomile to soothe the body and mind. Sadly, this one doesn’t … um … work. The smell is very pleasant but it doesn’t have the power to send me off to sleep, I’m afraid, and I therefore found it totally ineffective in every way. Which is a shame as it cost me £16(!!!) for 75ml at Boots. What a rip-off! I’d steer well clear of this if I were you.

However, I’m happy to say that the Skin Owl Lavender Beauty Drops are very effective indeed. Having struggled to find a cure for her own cystic acne, SkinOwl founder Annie Tevelin turned to lavender – entrusting her complexion to its powerful calming and anti-inflammatory properties. A blend of only the finest organic lavender and unrefined argan oils, Beauty Drops Lavender are ideal for anyone whose skin is oily/combination, congested or susceptible to redness – absorbing excess sebum and battling blemish-causing bacteria, to quickly restore skin’s clarity and equilibrium. This is the oil that transformed Annie’s skin within just 42 days – her spots disappeared and the redness was all but eliminated after just over two months of applying this oil every morning and evening. This product is just wonderful – I use it most mornings and it totally improves my skin and makes it feel fantastic. It really heals up my spots super-fast and keep them and the redness at bay. It is now a staple in my beauty routine. Okay, it costs £38 for a 2oz bottle at Cult Beauty, but it’s worth its weight in gold!

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I’m sure I’ve sung the praises of Femarelle tablets for menopausal and post-menopausal women before and for good reason. Product details: provides fast relief to menopausal symptoms, such as hot flushes, headaches and sleep disturbances; increases bone mineral density and leads to new bone formation; relieves vaginal dryness (atrophy); does not affect the breast and uterus, and does not affect clotting. I take one tablet each day and it definitely keeps those hot flushes at bay and makes me feel a whole lot better! They cost £35 for 56 tablets from Amazon and I’ve already restocked. These are vital if you’re a woman of a certain age …

The Baylis & Harding Sweet Mandarin & Grapefruit Balancing Body Wash was part of a set I received for Christmas and I’ve just finished it. I’m sorry to say that I really hated it. The scent is neither mandarin nor grapefruit as far as I could tell, and just ends up as a sweet-smelling cheap-feeling gel. In fact the gel is quite slimy and I hated the way it came out of the bottle in a glutinous lump which I had to spread over my flannel before washing as otherwise it just fell off in the shower or bath. So annoying! I’m so relieved I’ve finished it. There’s a body lotion that’s come with it too (sigh) which also just smells sweet and cheap, so I’m going to use it as foot lotion to get rid of it … No idea what it cost as I don’t think they’re selling it any more (thank goodness) but I’d give it a miss for sure.

I do love my Simple Gentle Care Shampoo though. Simple Gentle Care Shampoo is a trouble-free solution to get great looking hair whilst protecting your scalp. The active benefits in Simple Gentle Care Shampoo include Pro-Vitamin B5 to enhance sheen, Chamomile Oil to gently soften and soothe, and it is pH balanced so works in harmony with your scalp. The shampoo contains no perfume or colour and is dermatologically tested and approved. I always stock this one, and use it between anti-dandruff shampoos to give my hair a break. I wash my hair every day so it’s especially important to treat it gently! It’s £2.99 for 200 ml at Boots and I recommend this one.

I’m a total convert to the Facial Konjac Sponge that I picked up at Superdrug a while back. Sadly, Superdrug don’t seem to stock them any more (sob!) but they’re amazing so I hope they bring them back. I’ve given you a link to the Konjac Sponge Company instead where I intend to buy a replacement when my Superdrug set wear out. The prices are fairly reasonable (not as reasonable as where I bought them though!). I use this every night with my facial cleanser as a kind of facial massage on the skin, and it really cleans in a very deep way without irritation. Perfect! I rinse the sponge afterwards and then hang it on the door handle by its string to dry it out. Once a week, I give it a wash with my brushes and it lasts about a couple of months. Bliss indeed and it makes my skin a lot clearer and softer. I’d rush and get one of these if you haven’t already!

Last but by no means least, I’ve enjoyed using the Boots Deep Moisturising Foot Cream. Product details: a soothing, medicated and antiseptic foot cream to nourish and soften hard dry skin. Contains natural herbal extracts (mint, lavender & marshmallow). Dermatologically tested. Suitable for all skin types. Lanolin free. This is a nice soothing cream for my feet and I’ve been using it in the morning. I could have done with a much punchier mint and/or lavender scent but for the price I’m not complaining. It’s £3.99 for 100ml at Boots, but they have a Buy-One-Get-Second-Half-Price offer for their foot products now so a real bargain.

Have a beauty-filled weekend!

Anne Brooke Books

 

Gold Lady and Grapefruit

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I never would have bought the Imperial Leather Sweet Vanilla and Cherry Blossom Foamburst Body Wash as I thought (weirdly) the look of it was way too masculine and I couldn’t work out who it was aimed at. I mean what’s with all the spooky black background? Seriously odd. It was only because I came across a blogger who was raving about it and said how much both she and her husband loved it that I decided to give this one a go. This luxurious body wash transforms from a smooth gel into an abundance of rich, creamy lather that glides across your skin like silk. Benefits: Immerse yourself in a delicious heavenly fragrance with this sumptuous vanilla and cherry blossom body wash. Leaves your skin feeling soft and smooth after just one wash. Our expertly crafted blend delivers a unique fragrance burst and a lather so rich and silky it can also be used for shaving. I’m glad I bought it, because I must say I absolutely LOVE it. The smell is glorious – like immersing yourself in the best ever cherry pie and it somehow feels very Christmassy too. As with all Imperial Leather products, the foam is fabulous and you only need one small squirt for your whole body – bliss! I will definitely be picking this one up again very soon. You can find it at Superdrug for £3.15 for 200ml, but they’re doing a 2 for £5 offer at the moment.

I must admit that when I bought it online, I thought the Body Shop Pink Grapefruit Body Butter was going to be a much larger tub so when it arrived it was fairly disappointing. I’m no good with measurements, as you can tell! This rich and creamy Body Butter is a feast for the skin. It melts straight in to leave skin feeling soft and smooth. It contains Community Trade cocoa butter and has a zingy grapefruit scent. 

  • Body moisturiser
  • Lightly moisturises (24hr hydration)
  • Nourishes skin
  • For normal to dry skin
  • Skin is left feeling softer, and suppler
  • Easily absorbed
  • Refreshing, zesty scent

However, I enjoyed the product a lot more than I thought I would – the smell is great and not too harsh, and it rubs in very easily. The only issues are the size and the price – it’s £6 for 50ml, so you don’t get much bang for your buck. A shame really …

The Olay Regenerist 3 Point Day Cream was sent as a sample, and left me fairly cold actually. Olay Regenerist 3 Point day Cream with SPF30 provides fast anti-ageing results on face, neck and décolletage. From the first use, its lightweight, non-greasy texture leaves skin brighter, hydrated and protected from the ageing effects of sun damage. After 5 days skin feels firmer. Firms and helps protect from damaging UV rays SPF 30 protection in a lightweight prestigious feel. Hydrates skin and regenerates for a youthful look. Reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Exfoliates, smoothens and brightens. The trouble is that it’s just so lightweight that I didn’t feel it was doing me any good at all – like putting absolutely nothing on my face. I do at least like to feel it’s making some kind of difference, LOL! However, if you like things being that invisible, maybe this is the one for you? You can get it at Boots for £19.99 for 50ml, but they are having a one-third discount on Olay products at the moment.

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The Tesco Lens Wipes are my go-to product for cleaning my glasses and sunglasses. For spectacles, cameras and optical devices: quick drying, smear free and individually wrapped. I only actually clean them once a week but I really should do them more – I’m just too lazy! I would say these ones do leave some smears but they vanish very quickly so there’s no need to scrub at them. They cost £1.25 for 26 wipes, so not too bad at all.

I tried the Mario Badescu Facial Spray, as so many beauty bloggers were recommending it. A refreshing & hydrating facial mist. Features a gentle & non-irritating formula. Contains fragrant Herbal Extracts & Rosewater to provide a boost of moisture. Instantly soothes tight, dehydrated skin. Leaves skin refreshed & comfortable. Perfect for all skin types. Can also be used on dry hair. To use: mist on face, neck & hair as needed. Also great for setting makeup. This one is fine and the rose smell is nice, but I wouldn’t say I was wowed by it at all. I think there are better and cheaper rosewater sprays on the market. You can buy this one at Amazon for £10.66 for 120ml.

The Milton Lloyd Gold Lady Parfum de Toilette is one of my reliable day-time/work scents and I already have a spare to use now I’ve finished one. The notes are:

  • Citrus, Fruity
  • Jasmin Lily Rose
  • Caramel – Musk
  • Oriental-Fruity

For me, it’s pleasantly floral with a slight spicy kick that I love. You can get it at Amazon for £2.95 for 50ml, so a real and worthwhile bargain!

I’ve got loads of the Montagne Jeunesse Aloe Vera Blemish Mud Masks and they’re fairly good at clearing up the skin. The attributes are:

  • Special mud blend of Aloe Vera, Willow, Rosemary and WitchHazel
  • For Clear, Clean & Refreshed skin

The trouble is that the smell is starting to annoy me a bit so I have tended recently to approach it with a slight groan. It does the job fairly well, but I’m opting for one of my other blemish masks when the need arises these days. I’m hoping this is just a blip as I do have lots left, LOL! You can buy it at Amazon for £1.98 per 20ml mask, and this will last you at least two sessions.

Finally, I’ve been using the Nyx Dark Circle Concealer in the Fair shade for a while now. A serious solution for one of beauty’s most challenging problems! No fancy names – just a product that can be counted on to do the job. The product glides on without looking thick or obvious. Coconut oil provides intensive moisture and ensures no caking. The subtle hint of orange counteracts the appearance of dark circles while natural skin-toned pigments work in unison to provide the ultimate coverage. It blends in well – but I don’t think it does the job as well as other products to be honest – though my eyes do need a lot of help! I was also annoyed by the way it caked up in the pot as I was coming to the end of it, which was very irritating. I kept putting caked pieces of the concealer onto my face and having to wipe it off and start again, grrr! So, while it’s been an interesting experience, I won’t be bothering again. You can buy it at Boots for £6.50 for a 2.9g pot, and it lasts a good while.

Happy Sunday!

Anne Brooke Books 

Seaweed, Doves and Poppies

Products I Like

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Lots of good products this week, though I’m not actually going to restock some of them at the moment for a variety of reasons.

The lovely people at 7th Heaven (Montagne Jeunesse) kindly sent me a free black seaweed peel-off mask recently and I’m grateful for the chance to try this one out. It contains natural minerals from Laver Seaweed and Sea Buckthorn which deeply cleanses and draws out dirt and oil. It definitely does this and my face was a lot smoother after this mask – which lasted me two sessions – but as you know I’m not a huge fan of the peel-off mask anyway (takes too long!) and this one is seriously messy and involved a major clean of the basin afterwards, so whilst it does what it says it will do, it’s just not for me … It costs £1.00 at Boots.

I have been TOTALLY loving the Dove Dermaspa Uplifted Body Lotion – and honestly I think it’s the best thing ever for my crinkly thighs, LOL. Uplifted+ is our first spa-like body lotion to blend satin gel with Surface Cell-Moisturisers™. This unique lotion, that gently moisturises and replenishes, give your skin a pick-me-up to improve elasticity and firmness. It’s nicely scented and I also love the fact that it’s a very pale blue colour – which is just different from every other cream under the sun so that’s great too. It’s half-price at Boots at the moment at £2.99 for 200ml, so snap this one up!

During my ‘grapefruit obsession stage’, I picked up a tube of the Body Shop Pink Grapefruit Fresh Body Sorbet just to give it a try, and really I’ve fallen in love with this one. This sorbet is the perfect skin treat. Bursting onto the beauty scene, this must-try moisturiser will leave your skin infused with the zesty scent of grapefruit and provide lightweight, instant hydration. I love the fact that it’s lighter than body cream but still gives me smooth skin and that fresh grapefruit smell – it’s brilliant for the mornings! It costs £8.50 for 200ml at Body Shop (not bad for their prices really) and I shall buy it again once I’ve made more of a hole in my massive body cream collection …

My total FAVOURITE product of 2017 has to be the Marks and Spencer Christmas special Star of Wonder Midnight Poppy and Saffron hand cream. I’m utterly devastated that I can’t provide a link for this as it was only a Christmas edition (weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth!), but I’m telling you that this is the happiest product you will EVER put on your hands EVER. Trust me. The tube tells the complete truth on this occasion: A luxurious hand cream with a captivating midnight poppy scent at the heart, on a base of sandalwood, amber, saffron, cinnamon and musks. It’s the creamiest, most gorgeously scented hand cream ever and it’s the cinnamon that does it – I LOVE cinnamon and I wish it was in more products – this product made me happy and it made my friend-going-through-a-horrendous-time happy, and I can’t say a negative thing about it. Please bring it back soon, Marks & Spencer – I can’t wait until next Christmas for more of this – really I can’t!!…

The Dove Compressed Invisible Dry Anti-Perspirant Deodorant spray is now my go-to deodorant, as I think it’s even more effective than the roll-on – though I like to have both in stock, always. Invisible Dry Anti-Perspirant Deodorant contains translucent anti-perspirant ingredients. It combines protection against white marks on skin and clothes, with powerful anti-perspirant ingredients and advanced 1/4 moisturiser technology. Tough on sweat, not on skin. It’s brilliant – keeps me dry and never stains clothes. I love it. I have two more in stock, but will repurchase definitely when I start to run out. At the moment, it’s £3.50 for 125ml at Boots, but they are having a 2 for £4 selected Dove products offer, so pop this one in your basket asap.

I’ve used Sensodyne Pronamel Gentle Whitening toothpaste every morning now for ages (I use another type of toothpaste at night) and it’s an auto buy for me. New Sensodyne Pronamel Gentle Whitening Toothpaste is specially formulated to protect against acid erosion and also gently yet effectively remove stains, restoring teeth to their natural whiteness. As it contains fluoride it also provides the benefits of a regular toothpaste. The mint flavour is great – not too sharp – and it keeps the stains well away from my teeth, so what’s not to like? It’s £4.50 for 75ml at Boots, but they are running a 3-for-2 selected Sensodyne offer, so even more of a bargain.

The Dr Organic Tea Tree Cream is pretty good and I’ve used it for quite a while. It’s good for keeping facial spots under control and I use it most mornings. It’s very soothing, but perhaps not quite strong enough for any serious rash crises – though of course I have plenty of other products for those! Whilst I would look at buying this again at some point as it’s just so comforting, I have other options at the moment to try out. It costs £5.99 for 50ml at good old Holland & Barrett.

I’ve come to (well over!!!) the six-month usage for a couple of my favourite mascaras recently and I like them both for different reasons, so here they are:

The Boots No 7 Extreme Length Sensitive Brown/Black mascara is very gentle on my super-sensitive eyes – especially as I’m now concentrating on the top lashes only and leaving the lower ones to do their own thing, LOL. Introducing No7 Extreme Length Sensitive Eyes Mascara. Giving all of the definition, length and separation of the original, this gentler version contains natural waxes, almond and jojoba oils to care for every lash. Enriched with Almond and Jojoba oils to take care of the lashes and D-Panthenol to condition, the mascara has a mild pH neutral formula to ensure eyes are tear free and is suitable for contact lens wearers. It’s easy for a mascara-klutz like me to use and tends to stay on even with my watery eyes. A couple of times, it has run a little bit but it doesn’t cause any pain which is great for me. I feel very happy with this one and will repurchase when I next need to buy a mascara (I have other ones on the go at the moment). It’s £12.50 for 7ml at Boots, though No 7 products have a Buy-1-get-2nd-half-price offer running now.

The Maybelline Waterproof Great Lash Very Black Mascara is very reliable too, but in a slightly different way from the No 7 one above. It definitely doesn’t come off, no matter what – which is great! Though on occasions, I’ve found it a bit on the irritating side. Still, it’s a good evening mascara in my view, and I would look at repurchasing it when I need another mascara. This one is £4.99 for 12ml at Boots, and if you buy one at the moment, you get a second half-price!

I must also thank Mrs Strawberry Blonde this week for mentioning the wonders of the Kabuki brush for putting on face powder recently. I’d never heard of this at all, so I rushed to Superdrug to buy one, and am loving it. It really does give my face a smooth finish, and I’m now a Kabuki fan, LOL! It’s £4.49 at Superdrug, and they’re running a buy-1-get-2nd-half-price offer on selected make-up accessories. You can also get a similar Kabuki brush at Amazon for £3.49, so lots of choice here.

Products I Won’t Repurchase

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Here I must give yet another shout-out to Mrs Strawberry Blonde for first introducing me to the facial Konjac sponge which I absolutely LOVE. I bought mine at Superdrug but they don’t seem to be stocking them now, which is a crying shame, but you can still get them at Amazon, hurrah! Anyway, inspired by the sponge wonder, I bought a pink clay Konjac sponge for use on the body generally – I love pink clay as it seems to really soothe my skin. At first I enjoyed using it but after a while I think it began to give me spots again on my chest and back, so I’ve stopped using it and have gone back to my trusty flannel. It has also fallen apart very quickly, which isn’t great. Mind you, when I look at the Amazon product info, I’ve probably been using it wrong as apparently you don’t need soap or shower gel, which I didn’t realise. Don’t know if I’ll try it again, as it’s not given me confidence. The face one is still great though! If you do want to give the body version one a go, it’s £11.99 at Amazon – a bit pricey really.

I’ve been using up the Olay Total Effects 7-in-1 Day moisturiser, but haven’t been that impressed really. Olay Total Effects 7in1 Fragrance Free Anti-Ageing Moisturiser is an all-in-one solution for younger-looking skin from the world’s facial skin care brand. It helps fight seven signs of aging: visibly smoothes fine lines and wrinkles, helps skin to maintain its moisture, evens skin tone appearance, minimizes the look of pores, smoothes and evens out skin texture, enhances brightness, hydrates to restore firmer skin appearance. Reformulated with 40% more vitamins than before, it’s Olay’s simple, smart approach to younger, healthier-looking skin. Total Effects’ VitaNiacin Complex, containing vitamin E, pro-vitamin B5 and vitamin B3 (also known as Niacinamide), helps enhance your skin’s healthier look with 7 beautiful benefits. Enjoy visibly firmer, younger-looking skin every day. Sorry, but it’s way too light for me and delivered none of the promised results, oh well. If you’re an Olay fan, it’s currently on offer at a one-third discount at Boots, so £9.99 for 50ml.

Finally, I have finished my sample of Vichy Aqualia Thermal Dynamic Hydration Rich Cream but it did nothing for me. Vichy Aqualia Thermal Rich gives, for the first time, Vichy Thermal Spa Water and a micro-encapsulated delivery system of Activ Hyaluronine improve the diffusion of moisture into the surface of the epidermis. The skin feels replenished with water, as if continuously hydrated by misting micro-sprays. The skin is intensely hydrated feeling soothed. It feels supply, refreshed and velvety soft, free of sensation of tightness all day long. The skin is more resilient, with increased suppleness and radiance. Its effectiveness is proven on 100 women under dermatological control. The rich cream is refreshing and melts into the skin. Non-greasy and non-stick with no sensation of thickness.The Aqualia Thermal range helps fortify and soothe the skin giving it 24 hour hydrating care for use on dehydrated and sensitive skin. Intensely hydrated, the skin feels soother, refreshed and free from sensations of tightness. Harrumph! Really appalled with the standard of English here!!! Have Boots no decent translators at all? Heck, even I can do better than this – but I thought I’d leave it as it is on their site to give you a laugh! My dears, it worked no miracles for me, so I have saved myself £17 for a 50ml pot, phew!

Have a beautiful weekend, everyone!

Anne Brooke Books