Clear skin, scent and an eyeliner disaster!

Products I Love

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A nice bunch of products I love this week for a whole lot of reasons. First off, there’s good old Femarelle tablets which are just BRILLIANT if you’re going through the menopause – they keep those hot flushes to a minimum and if you do get one, they make it a lot shorter – which is a huge relief. I take one every morning (and have another type of menopause pill in the evening) and the combination works like a dream. The main ingredients are soya and flaxseed. They’re not cheap – £21.13 for 56 tablets at Amazon, but worth their weight in gold.

I’ve been taking a teaspoon of Pukka Elderberry Syrup every morning for a while now and it definitely keeps those winter colds and bugs at bay. Yes the bottle gets messy, but if you wipe it down after each use and keep it in the box, then you should be fine. Just don’t get it on your clothes though or it won’t come off! Once opened, you need to store it in the fridge. The cost is £10.48 for 100ml and I’ve already restocked it.

The Simple Spotless Skin Triple Action Face Wash (with zinc and chamomile) is a product I’ve used for ages and it’s very reliable for calming down spots and soothing the skin. I’ve not been using it as much recently as my skin is so much better these days (hurrah!!) but I have 2 or 3 back-up bottles from the years when I used it all the time. It is always going to be one of my favourites, and you can pick it up for £3.75 for 150ml at Superdrug.

I’ve really loved using my little tube of Couvent des Minimes’ Gardener’s Hand Healer – the smell is very fresh and it’s very soothing on the skin. However it doesn’t seem to be in stock anywhere in the UK now, and the original website link shows it as hugely pricey anyway at $19 for 2.6 oz. Um, no … no matter how good it is …

I set great store by the HRI Clear Complexion tablets and was a bit traumatised recently when I just couldn’t get hold of them anywhere – yikes! Apparently they were updating the ingredients and the new formula version is now available, hurrah! I take one of these a day and it does wonders for my skin. They’re currently on sale at Amazon for £5.99 for a pack of 60 tablets, and I can thoroughly recommend these.

As I’ve said before, I’m sure, I love my new deodorant – Dove Invisible Dry roll-on – it does exactly what it says on the tin and there are no stains on my clothes so I’ve stocked up on this product. It’s a snip at £1.75 for 50ml at Boots, so buy early buy often!

I have very sensitive teeth which tend to stain as soon as they look at a cup of tea, so I’ve been using Colgate Sensitive Pro-Relief Whitening toothpaste every evening for ages (I mix it up with a similar product as I don’t like having the same thing all the time …). It makes my teeth much less sensitive and I now have no staining, so I can’t recommend this enough. It’s half price at Superdrug at the moment at £.1.82 for 75ml so well worth picking this one up if you have teeth like mine.

I’m a fairly recent convert to the Simple Gentle Care Shampoo and use this as a ‘chaser’ between my stronger anti-dandruff shampoos as I think it gives my hair a bit of a breather. It’s a lovely clear shampoo which lathers up easily and does the job of making my hair super-clean without damaging it. I have a few bottles as a back-up and will continue to restock this in the future. You can pick it up at Boots for £2.99 for 200ml, which I think is a real bargain for a decent product.

The Sanctuary Velvety Hand Cream is just lovely – it has that wonderful Sanctuary scent and makes my hands feel wonderfully smooth. However, though I do like it, I have lots (lots and lots!) of hand creams to use up at the moment so I won’t be restocking this one for now. It’s £3.00 for 30ml at Boots so not the cheapest hand cream around but a nice one if you want to treat yourself now and again.

Products I don’t like

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The Milton Lloyd Summer Flowers scent hasn’t been bad actually, and I’ve been happy to use it up but it’s not my favourite Milton Lloyd perfume spray as I have several others I prefer. It’s floral and feminine, but not as spicy as I personally like. Still, at £2.99 for 50ml at Fragrance Direct (where would I be without them?!?), you can’t go wrong – and as I say there are a lot of lovely £2.99 scents to choose from which is a total bargain.

This week, I’ve been trying to be more adventurous with my eyes – which I usually leave WELL alone as they are hugely sensitive and start stinging at the slightest thing, groan … The wonderful news is that I have worked out that I CAN use mascara as long as I put it on my top lashes only and not my bottom ones, and it just makes me feel great to finally be wearing mascara at last! On the other hand, I had a go with eye-liner – the Bourjois Ultra Black eye liner as pictured above – but, my dears, I had absolutely NO IDEA what I was supposed to do with it. First off, I put it under my bottom lashes which made me look like a panda so I wiped it all off again. Then I resorted to the Internet to tell me what to do with eyeliner and realised it was supposed to go above the lower lashes, LOL! What a dork I am, eh! Once again, missing out on the “how to be a woman properly’ lessons at school has been my undoing!… Anyway, I tried it as it’s supposed to be done, but I HATE anything that near my eye so it was the world’s shakiest line – plus it was starting to make my eyes itch, yikes! – so I wiped it all off again and haven’t repeated the traumatic experience since! I think I’ll cut my losses and stick to the top-lashes mascara trick only – that seems to be working so far … Anyhow, I’m sure the eye liner is fab, if only it suited me or I had the abilities to put it on, and it’s £6.99 for 10ml at Superdrug if you fancy a try.

Have a great Sunday, everyone!

Anne Brooke Books

Rice and Soya Solutions

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I’ve not used up many products this week – just two! – but have loved them both, which is great news.

The TonyMoly Rice Face Mask Sheet isn’t one I wholly expected to enjoy, as I’ve been a bit on-the-fence about previous TonyMoly products, but this one is very good and I will definitely buy it again (I have one left to use) – assuming I can find it anywhere in the UK, as it’s out of stock, groan. It feels lovely on the skin, it’s very soothing and my face looked better afterwards for quite a while, so I was very pleased indeed.

I’ve been taking one a day of the Femarelle tablets – a soya-based product for menopausal women and it definitely makes the hot flushes go away fast. I’m HUGELY against HRT for all sorts of decent personal health reasons (no, don’t ask!!) so this is a wonderful alternative. They’re not cheap at £20.85 for 56 tablets, but worth their weight in gold. I’ve already restocked, naturally.

Also this week, I’ve been to the dentist to get a cracked filling sorted – yes, I managed to grind my teeth SO HARD that I cracked my own tooth and the filling fell out, making the whole thing hurt like hell. Yuk – and ouch! Just call me Jaws Brooke, eh …!! Anyway, the dentist was wonderful and the filling is now sorted out, and so the pain has gone, hurrah! I got told off for not wearing my mouthguard every night (I’ve been lax about this lately, as it’s a bit of a bore …) and I am now newly converted to having to wear it. Honestly, and a word to the wise – you really DON’T care about beauty issues when you have toothache – so make sure regular dental visits are part of your beauty regime today! Plus always do what the dentist tells you – and your mouth will remain as beautiful as you are!

Anne Brooke Books

Lori Olding Children’s Fiction

A Hair & Teeth Week

Products I Don’t Like

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This week I’m afraid I’ve taken against the Innisfree Bija Mask – as though it’s nice enough, sheet masks are still a bit of a faff all round – I’m happier with normal masks so I won’t be restocking on this one after all. It is good for sensitive or congested skin so if you like sheet masks, then this is one to consider. You can get it from eBay for £1.89, postage free.

I started off really liking the Alberto Balsam Tea Tree Tingle Conditioner but I soon got a bit bored with the scent and struggled to finish it. My verdict is it’s okay but I have other more interesting hair conditioners. It’s available at Boots for £1.00 only so a real bargain.

I don’t have anything drastic against the No 7 Instant Illusions Airbrush Away primer as it does the trick but not as well as other primers. Its main and unsurmountable problem is that it costs £16.50(!!) for only 30ml at Boots – so way overpriced to my mind. Then again, it’s currently part of a 3-for-2 offer so you could get it free if you can find anything you want in Boots that is more expensive. Good luck with that, LOL. There are other alternatives out there, girls!

Products I Like

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Teeth! Teeth are my bugbear at the moment (no, don’t ask!…) but I would NEVER be without my trusty Dentyl Active mouthwash – a lovely minty taste and it’s alcohol-free, which is very important to me. If I’m going to put alcohol down my gullet, then I want it be the Real Thing, not a health product with it added. It costs £1.30 at Boots – though currently out of stock online – and it really does the trick. Watch that plaque go!

I started off not liking the Olay Anti-Wrinkle Booster and Firming Serum – now I can’t live without it, so thank you very much to ever-lovely Mrs Strawberry Blonde for tipping me off on this one! I use it on my face in the evening and it just smooths out my skin ready for the evening make-up touch-up. Bliss! More than that, it’s now HALF-PRICE at Boots at only £4.99 so grab your bottle now!

I’ve used Rimmel’s Hide The Blemish Concealer (Ivory) for years now and it’s a pretty decent standby – these days, I’ve got other better concealers I totally rely on and which do a wonderful job, but this one is like an old friend I can’t quite let go. I’ll always love it and it’s well worth a try-out, but I suspect I won’t be restocking it once my supply has run out, sob! It will cost you £3.99 at Boots.

A new discovery for me is L’Oreal Perfect Match Foundation in Ivory Rose (1R1C) – I picked up a sample size very cheaply at eBay and have enjoyed using this one – it blends into the skin superbly well, covering all my imperfections (hey, let’s not list those then, LOL!!) and stays on pretty decently too. I’ve now bought a full-sized bottle, also from eBay as it’s cheaper than at Boots (£9.99 for 30ml, though there is a 3-for-2 deal on L’Oreal products at Boots …), and will look forward to getting that soon. I am indeed a TOTAL Foundation Tart!

Anne Brooke Books