Sunday, 22 November 2015

Pure Super Grape OvernightTreatment Oil - Review


There is something about the Pure Skincare range from Marks & Spencer that's really 'grabbing me' at the moment and the whole 'Grape Seed Extract thing' fascinates me for it's skincare benefits so I was intrigued to try out the Super Grape Overnight Treatment Oil. Aside from the fact that 'Super Grape' sounds like a Marvel comic character - the range contains a 'defend and restore' complex which has been proven to provide up to 90% protection against free radicals - the complex contains echinacea, peptides and resveratrol ... I had no idea what resveratrol is so here's what M&S have to say about it ...
"After years of collaborative research with scientists from a leading british university, we discovered that via a unique extraction process we could extract resveratrol from crushed pulp left over from the production of our own M&S wine"
The anti-ageing Super Grape Treatment Oil is said to smooth, hydrate and protect, promote younger looking skin and a radiant complexion ... well I may not understand the whole 'crushed pulp extraction thingy' but all those benefits sound pretty impressive to me!

A picture of the Pure Super Grape OvernightTreatment Oil
A picture of the Pure Super Grape OvernightTreatment Oil

I use a couple of generous drops most nights (as I'm already a  twice weekly 'Liquid Golder') after toning and under my moisturiser over face, neck and decolletage.  The oil is a little cloudy and bitty in appearance - just give it a good shake and it's easy enough to dispense with the dropper, it's also handy to give the bottle a bit of a wipe after using as it tends to seep down onto your surface otherwise.  It has a light, fruity fragrance and a soothing feel to it but is not heavy or syrupy,  it absorbs easily and my skin seems to drink it in.  The following morning my kite  looks surprisingly smoothed, bright, dewy and plumped ... exactly how you want to start off the day don't you think - a good all round dose of nourishment!
So yes  -  another winner from the Pure range - the Super Grape Overnight Treatment  Oil    is a surprisingly  effective product for the price of £16/28ml and and an absolute bargain when M&S  have one of  their 20% off  deals on (this little bottle will have lasted me about 3 months when  I've finished it)  actually - there is 3 for 2 available on Pure  Skincare at the moment so it may be a   good time for me to stock up!                                

Which is your favourite facial oil? Are you tempted by the Pure Super Grape Overnight Treatment Oil?

Jen x

Sunday, 8 November 2015

SBC Cotton Body Oil - Review


I think I'm turning into a bit of an 'oil' freak ... love it for face, hair, body and nails!  I'm already a fan of quite a few products from SBC (Simply Beautiful Collection) as you may have read in my blog post here - so when they very kindly offered to send me a bottle of their new Cotton Body Oil to try out - I jumped at the chance! Just to set the record straight here's a little information about the new line directly from their own press release ...
"SBC’s NEW Cotton Line provides gentle restorative care for those who  have allergy prone skin, and who are prone to reactions, particularly suited to skin conditions such as sensitive, reactive, delicate." 
A picture of the SBC Cotton Body Oil

A picture of the SBC Cotton Body Oil

The  Cotton Oil  is said to provide  'Natural care for delicate skin' and includes  a  simple  cocktail  of Cotton Seed Oil, Wheat Germ Oil,  Vitamin E, Whey Protein and Oat Kernel which,  all put  together are said to help lock in moisture and form a protective barrier,  condition,  smooth, tone, firm, nourish and  repair  (I don't  know about you  but  all that  lot sounds like a  dream come true  to me!).    It is dermatologically tested,  uses 100% natural allergen free  fragrance  and is suitable  for all the  family including babies. 

You can use in several different ways, added to your bath or whilst in the shower (although remember to clean up afterwards as slipping and sliding around is not good!). It can also be applied to damp skin and then patted dry or massaged in gently after drying off.  For myself I prefer the latter two options, I like the way it slips over the skin and have made sure to use over my sensitive eczema prone areas on my arms, which can sometimes react to products .  It leaves skin feeling like satin with a lovely silky sheen, smoothed and moisturised with no itch, sting or irritation. I have also taken to massaging from my decollete area up onto my neck and am amazed that some of the crepiness definitely seems to have abated in that area - I keep having to check my neck out in the mirror just to make sure!  It has a very delicate scent, reminds me of comforting 'baby-soft' fresh linen smell, just enough so you can get a whiff of the aroma on your skin but not so strong that it will interfere with a perfume of similar notes - to my large but inexperienced nose it seems to blend very well with my Philosophy Amazing Grace!

The Cotton Body Oil comes in at £20.50 from QVC for a big 250 ml bottle here. You don't need a lot so this size should last ages. All in all I consider this another winner from SBC, they seem to have a knack for creating simple formulations using natural ingredients, that deliver great results and I'd be happy to repurchase - in fact I think it will probably become one of those products that will be a staple in my body care regime whether or not it is feeling sensitive!

Are you an 'oil fan'? Have you tried the SBC Cotton Body Oil

Jen x

Sunday, 1 November 2015

A Long Overdue Haul ...!


Well it's been a while ... ended up having a bit of an impromptu blogging break (as you do) ... either didn't have the time and when I did the old 'mojo' had wandered off! Anyway here we are back with a haul type thing ...obviously all this lot was not bought in one fell swoop but rather more of  an ongoing, slow burning affair over the last couple of months ...

The only body care item is the Garnier Body Oil Infused Nourishing Scrub, I'm trying to run down my stash (heard that before haven't we?) but it was on offer in Sainsburys, although I've not even cracked it open yet so can't pass any judgement!

Skincare wise,  Marks & Spencers had one of their 20% off beauty events a few weeks ago so I ended up  with the Pure Beauty Gentle Refreshing Face Wash - it's been pinched by my young daughter who's using morning and night and says she likes it as it 'feels gentle'. The Pure Beauty Moisture Plus Miracle Balm is for me - it can be used as a cleanser, face mask or skin salve so I'm intrigued! And ... the 20% off event coincided with the launch of Pixi Beauty within M&S so I ended up with the iconic Pixi Glow Tonic - which I've wanted to try for ages! Oh and not forgetting the random Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water in the background there, which was cheap as chips in Boots so I grabbed it as my current Nuxe Micellar is coming to an end.

Nails then ... I felt like they deserved a little TLC as the old things have been cracking and splitting and so enter the OPI Nail Envy - which I've started using on and off and seems to be working so that's a winner then!  Also actually did need a new top and base coat so decided, again, to give OPI a go - the one I had, a top and base in one (I won't mention the brand!), was simply not cutting it on either front and my nails had become badly stained - looked like I'd dipped them in a bowl of turmeric - nice!  Lastly - the mini bottle of Jessica Polish is from the Autumn in New York collection  - this colour is NY State of Mind - love it!

Make-up wise it's definitely been a 'lip thing' recently ... apart from the little Collection Nude Palette there, which was at a stupid price of £2.50 or similiar in Superdrug!  The L'Oreal Color Riche in Eva's Pure Red, I grabbed back in August (see told you this haul went back a while!) when my brother was about to get married just as a back-up red lippie mind!  Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet in Beau Brun was more of a recent 'addition' (see what I did there?) as I thought it was a good Autumnal shade and then there's a little treat in the form of a MAC Lipliner (my first) in Chicory, which I'm intending using as an all over lip colour.  Lastly, a few nude lippies - my excuse is as follows, I've lost my favourite Naked Beige lippie from Soap & Glory - no idea where it is and every time I pop into Boots to repurchase it's never in stock, really hope it's not discontinued as it's the perfect mix of pink/brown and the exact tone I need for my skin! Anyway ... Maybelline had 3 for 2 on, I was in a hurry, did a quick swatch and bobs your uncle! Turns out the two at the back (one is Nude Embrace and the other Tantalizing Taupe) are a little pale and will have to be mixed with other lippies - hate it when that happens!  The Colour Drama Lipstick Pencil in Nude Perfection however, is actually ok - I had read that this particular colour is a bit of a dupe for MAC's Velvet Teddy so it'll do me for now!

And lastly ... Feel Unique had up to a third off specialist skincare (think this is still on actually here) so I grabbed a couple of essentials from the La Roche Posay Lipikar range - so good for those dry, sore, eczema prone days! I also thought this a good opportunity to try the Bioderma Micelle Solution for dehydrated skin and then noticed the huge pot of  Bare Minerals Original Foundation in my exact shade of Medium Tan (plus brush) was at the silly price of £11. The tiny sample of Marc Jacobs Decadence is complimentary!

So that's it ... as I said this lot has evolved over a decent length of time ... I think it's safe to say that it will be a while before I post another haul - definitely time to shop one's stash!

Have you used any of these products? What have you hauled on recently?

Jen x

Sunday, 4 October 2015

Pure Super Active Eye Serum - Review


'Pure' is not a brand I'd heard a lot about - until I was just browsing along on the M&S website (as you do!) when they had one of their 20% off beauty promotions back in April.  I spotted the range - here, read a few reviews, and ended up with a couple of products in the bag just out of curiosity ... also as you do! 

A picture of the Pure Super Active Eye Serum

A picture of the Pure Super Active Eye Serum

M&S describe the Pure Super Active Eye Serum as 'a potent blend of naturally active ingredients rich in omega 3 and omega 7', free from silicones, mineral oil and parabens and suitable for all skin types - it's meant to gently soothe, condition, smooth and help improve the appearance of the skin around the eye area.  It sounds impressive - especially for the price of £10/15ml  which is a fraction of the price of some of the eye products I've used over the years - this is such an unassuming little bottle that I really wasn't sure what to expect!

Fist up the smell ... I can't really detect any particular scent even though it contains 100% essential oil fragrances - must just be my nose!  The consistency is not thick or overly creamy but has a lotion like texture so it's easy to apply around the eyes and is absorbed in no time at all! You only need a small blob and this is very easily dispensed with the pump action (hooray for good pump action!).  As to the performance ... at my age there is always going to be 'fine line activity' going on - if you get my drift - however ... the surrounding eye area definitely seems smoothed, hydrated and much less crepey.  I also realised a couple of months ago that the lines across the top of my brow bone had reduced - I know this because I used to sometimes have to apply a serum before 'doing my brows' at times - the lines were pretty deep and brow products would 'sit' in them if I didn't iron them out first!  All of a sudden they're practically gone and the Super Active Eye Serum is the only product I've been using without fail around the orbital bone every night (apart from the two weeks on holiday) so I am presuming it's done it's job ... and pretty well too!

All in all I've been really impressed with this little product.  Such simple packaging but very effective , does what is says on the can and extremely affordable - especially when there is a 20% off promotion on - I'll definitely be repurchasing.  I do have another eye product, previously purchased at more than double the cost of the Pure Eye Serum to use next - be interesting to see how it compares!

Have you tried out any skincare products from the Pure range? Which is your favourite?

Jen x

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

SBC 5 Piece Shower & Gel Collection - Review


SBC (Simply Beautiful Collection) is a British company who have actually been around for 25 years, creating products for salons and therapists using many natural and botanical ingredients.  Their range of prescriptive gels, moisturisers, serums, polishes, cleansers and bath and body essentials which they describe as 'fuss-free, practical, effective, affordable pampering' are available on their website here or on QVC here.  Being a bit of a QVC addict ... as you may know ... I couldn't resist ordering the SBC  5 Piece Shower and Gel Collection when it was on offer a while ago ... I think it was around £38 and on easy pay so each of these whopping 500ml sizes worked out at around £8! 

A picture of the SBC 5 Piece Shower and Gel Collection

Collagen Skincare Gel - I think we're all aware of the benefits of a good shot of collagen -  we all want a piece of it don't we ... especially when we get a bit long in the tooth!   This water-based gel contains marine collagen and is a great product to add into a regime, to address dry or de-hydrated skin (face or body) and help with the look for fine lines and wrinkles as a 'quick-fix'.  It  leaves  the surface of the skin plumped, hydrated and silky and sinks in so easily with no greasy or  tight feeling. It has no particular scent that I can detect but just smells 'clean and fresh' if that makes sense!   I've mainly applied to my neck/decolletage area (either on it's own or layered over the top of another neck cream) and also on the tramlines on my forehead.  It can also be used as an  overnight face mask or plumping hand treatment and also on the lines around ones eyes or as an under make-up primer - I'll definitely be giving these a go and will report back!  A bit of a multi-tasker then and this large size is so cost effective - I love that you can use a pump here and a pump there without having to save it for a treat!

Propolis Bath and Shower Gel and Skincare Gel - I've known for a while that Propolis is said to deliver a variety of health and skincare benefits but reading about it has honestly fascinated me.  A complex extract created by bees, used to seal the hive and help keep the inside environment free from bacteria and disease etc, it's been used way back by ancient civilisations for it's medicinal properties and is today acknowledged as naturally anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal. I use the Propolis bath and shower gel for a super-gentle cleanse when my skin is feeling a bit stressed, dried out and irritated or on the verge of an eczema flare up.  The skincare gel can be used as a serum for problematic skin - apparently you're meant to use a fine layer on the appropriate area and smooth on rather than rub in - you can then follow with a body lotion if desired.  I've used the gel on patches of eczema on my arms, on dry cracked areas on my feet, after shaving underarms - as this area can get a bit sensitive and on my young daughter's t-zone to help clear up hormonal blemishes - rather than turning to a harsh spot treatment which may only dry her skin out.  It soothes and calms the skin and just seems to be a great all rounder for all the family with a subtle scent of honey.

Arnica Shower Creme and Skincare Gel - Arnica appears to be another 'oldie but goodie' - a traditional herbal remedy used to help relieve aches and pains, muscular tension and as a treatment for bruising and swelling. This is the duo I reach for after a session at the gym or a hefty body pump class when things tend to ache and groan - it's not meant as a cure but to help relieve tension and tightness. The shower creme has a pleasant, warming aroma to it and soothes my tired old body!  I try to massage the gel into any knotty and tense areas, seems to be my shoulders, biceps and quads after a class but I've also used it on my lower back if that's been aching a bit!   I have a feeling the Arnica duo will really come into it's own during the colder Winter months when my muscles seem to seize and tighten up all the more.

I love this kind of skincare - yes it's very nice to have a fancy bit of pretty packaging but for me it's what's inside that counts and I would rather pay for an effective product in a simple package rather than the other way around! The skincare gels can all be layered or mixed with other products either within or outside of the SBC range (I've layered a different body lotion over both the Propolis and Arnica gels) so you can really tailor the whole she-bang to meet your needs! I almost daren't look too closely at all the different formulas available on QVC (never mind the actual SBC website!) there are so many and being me I'll want to try them all!

Have you tried out any products from SBC? Which one would you be tempted to go for?

Jen x

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