Gold Lady and Grapefruit


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.


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 


Salt and Mud


Only one picture this week as I basically like all the products I’ve used, hurrah!

First off is the good old Epsom Salts – I know this is something your granny used to use, but honestly, they’re brilliant. Really good for detoxing if you put them in the bath and there’s no weird smell or anything so you wouldn’t know you have them in there at all! The HSL one is only £9.49 for 3kg at Amazon if you’re a Prime Member (£10.99 if you’re not) and also comes with a really handy scoop so I love this. I use one scoop in all my baths but you can easily use a couple if you want to. I’ve also just bought the WestLab Epsom Salts and am about to start these – they’re £4.85 for 1kg so not as great a bargain but I thought I’d give it a go. I’ve put them into the HSL container with the scoop to make it easier to add them to the bath. Actually, if you really want to go cheap, then just pick up any pack of Epsom Salts at your local garden centre – so cheap!! – and you’re laughing. They do exactly the same detox thing.

I’ve always a total pushover for the Montagne Jeunesse face masks (supposed to be single use but I make them last for 2 facials and there’s no problem). The two I’ve used this week are the Cucumber Peel-off – every beauty blogger I’ve read seems to dislike this because of the strong smell, but it didn’t bother me though it’s definitely more lime than cucumber. I liked the colour of it too, and it peeled off with no issues. My skin felt very cleansed without being dry afterwards, so give it a go if you’d like to. You can get a pack of 6 masks for £5.00 at Amazon which is great. My favourite mask this week though is the Aloe Vera Blemish Mud which is just fantastic for congested skin and very calming. I will definitely get this one again. Again, they are £5 for 6 masks  at Amazon.

I can’t praise 4160 Tuesday’s Pillow Talk perfume highly enough – I really LOVE this stuff even though it’s definitely not cheap. It’s £15 for a handbag-sized atomiser and just so gorgeous a scent. A real treat for the evenings when you want to feel special!

Imperial Leather Summer Sunrise Hand Wash is a wonderful mix of shea butter and honeysuckle and makes summer last that little bit longer. It doesn’t dry the skin out either which is great. It seems to have gone out of stock at the moment which is a shame though I have provided a link to Amazon for you above. I hope they bring it back next summer as I really like this one!

I’ve blogged about the Body Shop Pink Grapefruit Hand Cream before – as it’s just so good on my feet (less so on the hands!) and I’m into grapefruit as a super-food & beauty product at the moment. It’s still £4 for 30ml which is just stupid prices, but I do enjoy using it – very invigorating for my morning feet.

Boots Botanics Rosewater Toning Spritz feels lovely on my face, and rosewater is just so good for the skin! Plus the smell isn’t too overpowering, though I do really love rose products so I wouldn’t mind if it was, LOL. This is only £4.00 for 150ml so a LOT cheaper than other facial sprays currently on the market. I’m restocking this one for sure.

Ravensara Essential Oil is a must if you suffer from any kind of catarrh or sinusitis problems – I blend mine with sweet almond oil and grapefruit oil for using on my feet at night and also sweep it across my cheeks and neck in the morning – and it’s really amazing! I’ve already ordered a new bottle from Amazon – there are loads on there but the cheapest is £3.95 for 10ml. For me, it’s worth every penny.

Finally, I’ve just started taking one-a-day of High Strength 15mg zinc tablets from Simply Supplements, and I’m convinced it clears my skin brilliantly – plus of course keeping colds at bay over winter, hurrah! I’m trying some 10mg tablets from Boots at the moment, but I suspect I’ll go back to the Simply Supplements ones after that. They are £6.80 for 60 tablets. I love them!

Anne Brooke Books


Three Face Masks and a Handwash


Have had a great time this week trying things out. I picked up three Montaigne Jeunesse face masks up for only £1 each at Sainsbury’s last week, and I’ve also just finished my lovely bottle of Carex Love Hearts Handwash.

The face masks were fabulous on the whole, and I shall definitely be getting more of them! At only £1 per go, it’s a real bargain, and I think you can probably get 2 uses out of them even though the packet is only supposed to be for one use. There’s just loads in it so next time I’m going to make it last for two masks – I hate waste!

Anyway, my total favourite was the Creamy Coconut one as it was so soft and gentle on the face and it made my skin feel amazing. The Blemish Mud was also good, and a very close second – no drying feeling at all. The third one – the Argan Oil mud – was the one I was looking forward to most, as I love Argan Oil, but it was actually the most drying of the three, and though it didn’t do anything negative to my skin, it’s not one I’d buy again. But I love the whole Montaigne Jeunesse range and I shall be buying more.

Of course, you can’t really go wrong with a Carex fun handwash and this one’s a real winner. It actually does smell of those wonderful Love Hearts we all used to eat when younger – or I did anyway! – it lasts for a while on your hands. I’ll pick up another when I’m next in Sainsbury’s for sure.

All best!

Anne Brooke

Three Masks and a Foundation

I was lucky enough recently to pick up a voucher online for 3 sample Body Shop face masks, so I popped into town one lunchtime last week to pick them up. I was a bit worried that it might not work somehow, but the lady in the Guildford shop was lovely and picked the three samples out for me. I had to sign up (for free) for a Body Shop card, but that’s okay as I do shop there now and again, and anyway apparently I get a £5 voucher on my birthday for having a loyalty card, so that’s something to look forward to.

The samples I was given were British Rose Fresh Plumping Mask, Ethiopian Honey Deep Nourishing Mask and Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Glow Mask. All of these are available for £15 per 75ml.

Body Shop British Rose Fresh Plumping Mask

Body Shop Ethiopian Honey Deep Nourishing Mask

Body Shop Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Glow Mask

I had high hopes for the British Rose one, and it smells very nice as well as feeling good on the skin. But I’m not convinced I gained any plumping benefit afterwards – or at least not enough to last or to notice. The Ethiopian Honey mask was the one I was most looking forward to as I LOVE honey and always have a teaspoon of honey every night as I think it staves off colds and is one more defence against the dreaded hay fever. This one felt totally gorgeous on the skin and smells amazing, but again I’m not sure my skin was very nourished afterwards – though I accept that may have had something to do with finding a large spider in the bath (double yuk!!) while I had the mask on and getting my long-suffering husband to deal with it (the spider, not the mask …).

Last but not least was the Himalayan Charcoal mask – I wasn’t really looking forward to this one which is why I left it to the end, but actually it’s okay – though you do end up with tea leaves stuck to your face so must hope that nobody comes to visit you! Weirdly this is the one I would choose of all three of them if I absolutely had to – but the exfoliant ingredients worry me as I believe they damage the face.

So, whilst this was a pleasant experience (apart from the spider, LOL), I won’t be purchasing any of them in their full sizes, especially as I think they’re expensive for what you get, but you might well enjoy trying them out.

On that lunchtime trip to town, I also went into Boots to have my No 7 Match Made foundation skin tone analysis, as I thought it would be interesting to do, to see what they said. It didn’t take long and the lady I saw was really lovely and helpful. She picked up on my problem skin very quickly – and acknowledged it would difficult (as I thought) to match me with a perfect foundation as I am menopausal (and therefore my skin dries out foundation really quickly) and also I suffer from spots and blemishes (and therefore need a full coverage, ideally). Sadly, there’s not a foundation around (as far as the lady and I know) which will give me the coverage I need without caking – but the best she could do was No 7 Stay Perfect Foundation in Cool Vanilla – which is lighter than the ivory tones I usually go for but actually suited me better as I’m horrendously pale!

No 7 Stay Perfect Foundation Cool Vanilla

The other fun news – which made me feel fantastic! – is that while I was having my skin analysis, the lady said how much she loved my nail polish and asked what it was. Result – I’m finally a Real Girl, LOL!!! Nobody’s EVER asked me this sort of thing before so I must be doing something right. Anyway, it’s Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Mauve Along polish, with a top coat of Rimmel Glitter Finishing Touch, in case you’re curious!

So, I’ve tried this foundation a couple of times during the week, and certainly miss the amount of coverage I usually rely on. That said, I can build it up a little, but I’m not sure that’s enough to make me feel comfortable. On the other hand, it’s been brilliant at not caking during the day so definitely has some staying power. It’s £14.50 at Boots.

While I’m not likely to repurchase this foundation, I will use it on non-work days or days when I feel more confident in my skin. So the search for the perfect foundation continues but it’s been a fun-filled experimental week!

Anne Brooke