Monday, 31 July 2017

Clarins SOS Face Masks Review; The best Clay Mask ever?!

Face masks are always hit or miss for me; I am obsessed with the idea of popping a mask on twice a week and letting all of the masky goodness sort my face out but in reality the time I actually spend with a face mask on is barely anything at all. I don't know if it's just me, but the idea of sitting and putting a face mask on really excites me but also really wares me down, questions like 'do I have enough time?' or 'Can I actually be bothered?' cross my mind and I never end up doing one until my face is in desperate need. The idea of face masks being quick and easy is not cemented in my head and yet that's exactly what they are. 10 minutes on and a quick wash off and you're good to go; so why don't I do one more often? I guess the answer to that is that I haven't really found one that wows me with it's instant results. Leaving a clay mask on for ten minutes is great in reality but when you break out in spots the next day it all seems like it was for nothing. In actual fact that's the complete opposite response you should be having because a good clear out of your skin is why the mask was a good idea and kept to a regular masking routine, you shouldn't have the breakouts. The new Clarins' SOS face mask range is the perfect example of that. For the past few weeks I've been having a play around with the new Clarins SOS face masks and have come to the conclusion that I'm just lazy! With three different kinds of face masks for your different facial needs Clarins have really hit the nail on the head with these because they have cleared up my skin and made it appear more glowy and hydrated with just three simple steps.

 First up I wanted to talk to you about my personal favourite of the three; SOS Pure. SOS Pure is a green clay mask with alpine willow herb extract designed to leave your skin velvety soft after sorting your skins imperfections. Perfect for combination to oily skin (hiya) this rebalancing mask works to purify the skin without drying like other clay masks do. I've popped this mask on with a face mask brush (as to minimise product waste) for around the last two weeks every couple of days and have really liked the results. Of course, having not religiously masked for the past couple of months (if not longer) I had an initial break out of a couple of spots around my chin and nose area but after cleansing with my usual skincare routine and applying this mask again every couple of days the breakouts became less and less. Almost three weeks in my skin is now pretty clear and although a hormonal spot might appear every now and again (I am growing a human after all) I'm pretty chuffed with the results. SOS Pure has a really gorgeous fresh scent to it which instantly makes me feel calm and with it being so easy to apply and rinse off with cool water I genuinely think I've found my new favourite clay mask. I know you probably think this is me just babbling on but compared to my other fave clay masks that I continuously repurchase and apply every now and again (Origins Charocal Mask being one of them), I am obsessed with the fact that this one doesn't dry onto my skin. Don't get me wrong, I love a good skin-cracking drying clay mask as they really feel like they're doing wonders, but one of the reasons I don't reach for them too often is because they take a while to scrub off; this Clarins SOS Pure face mask is completely different to other clay masks I've tried and with a little cool water is so easily removed. It feels cool and light on my skin and the results really prove how much of a good job it does without having to pull my face apart by drying. It's one I've reached for every single time I've wanted to mask over the past few weeks and I can guarantee it'll be the one I keep reaching for too. 

Clarins SOS Hydra is the next mask that's recently been released and is 100% not the kind of face mask I'd usually go for. Being a mask-when-I-feel-like-it kinda gal, the masks I only every tend to reach for are clay masks that I really feel are grabbing the dirt from within. Hydrating and moisturising masks are really only something I'd choose to use if I'm having an especially dry skin day and even then I'd probably pick up a heavy duty moisturisers instead. The SOS Hydra refreshing mask is a mask designed for all skin types to re-boost the skins moisture with leaf of life extract and a hyaluronic acid complex. This mask has a cream/gel formula and smooths over the skin really easily to instantly hydrate your skin from the get-go. Once again, as with all of Clarins' new face masks this one stays on your skin for ten minutes before you can wipe it off, but what I especially like about this one (and the SOS Comfort, which I'll talk about in a second) is that you don't remove it with water! I know, say what?! The SOS Hydra face mask is to be removed with a cotton pad and lotion and being me, I'm not entirely sure what is meant by lotion but I've been removing mine with a cotton pad and some of my favourite toner. It leaves my skin feeling super bouncy and hydrated and I don't feel like I've washed away any of the goodness. I've been using this face mask after I've been using the SOS Pure clay mask either on the same day or on the day after, just to re-introduce the moisture into my skin and my skin has definitely been loving me for it! 

Last but by no means least in the trio of new Clarins SOS face masks is the SOS Comfort Nourishing balm mask which is designed for dry skin. As many misconceive, there is definitely a difference between dry skin and dehydrated skin and this mask is one for those who have dry and tight skin. Having never really tried a mask that is more of a balm than anything else, I was pretty excited to try this one out. Although my skin is combination most of the time I do get pretty dry skin more often than I'd like; using a lot of spot-banishing cleansers and skincare bits really does strip my skin of a lot of it's natural moisture and so I usually have to slather my skin in moisturiser to try and get it back to life. That isn't always that great of a solution though as it can take a lot of moisturiser to sort out my face and so an intensive balm mask to re-nourish my skin was exactly what I needed! I'd say of all three masks this would be the one I use the least as more of a treat for my skin as with using the SOS Hydra mask once a week and how my skin usually is, I wouldn't really need to re-nourish it quite that often, but from using it so far, I can tell it's the perfect mask for my skin on those really dry days! Again I removed this mask with a couple of cotton pads semi-soaked in toner and the feel of my face after was just gorgeous. It made it feel so much bouncier and full of life and definitely not dry which is a really great result for having it on for such a short period of time. My skin 100% felt more nourished and healthier and I really could feel the difference compared to the SOS Hydra mask. This one really does make your skin more comfortable and less dried out whereas the Hydra mask really gives your skin the extra re-hydration that it needs to keep it looking bouncy and healthy on a daily basis! 

At £30 for a 75ml tube, I'd say these masks are really well priced; They're absolutely gorgeous and perfect for an array of different skin types and skin issues and last forever with how little you need each use. My skin has well and truly loved being pampered by these three and I will definitely repurchase any of them in a heart beat when I run out - especially the SOS Pure and Comfort. 

These are available now from Clarins. Will you be trying any of them?

BekyLou, Beauty, Fashion, Fitness and Lifestyle Blog based in the South West and London.
(*this post may contain items gifted to me for PR purposes*)


Friday, 28 July 2017

My current Haircare Favourites Part 1: Palmer's Olive Oil Formula

Palmer's Olive Oil Formula

I have to be honest with you; haircare isn't one of my main priorities in life. Don't get me wrong, I love my hair looking sleek and smooth but compared to my extensive skincare routine, my haircare shelf is really lacking in substance. Not being all that talented when it comes to my hair and the styles I can produce, the extent to which I actually bother with it is pretty minimal. I wash my hair around every three or so days (let's be serious here, it's usually a lot longer) and in terms of styling, it's either in a pony tail or up in a bun - not very imaginative at all! I'd absolutely love to be a whizz kid with my styling tools and be able to do a plethora of braids and fancy up do's, but sadly that's just not me and even though I have been trying to teach myself a couple of different styles (I've been semi-successful with a french braid) for the majority of the time, my hair is just something that gets a little bit left behind. I don't bother with my hair that often and so the products I use are pretty minimal, but I do have a couple of favourites that I keep going back to time and time again and a couple of new bits that I've recently been introduced to that I can't imagine not using in the future. For this post, I wanted to talk about the new products that I've been loving recently for keeping my hair in tip-top condition from a brand that I didn't even know did haircare, but keep your eyes peeled soon for part 2 where I talk all about my favourite John Frieda products also!

Palmer's Olive Oil Formula Palmer's Olive Oil Formula Palmer's Olive Oil Formula

Palmer's are a brand that I have been intrigued by for a very long time; having not really used many of their products due to the fact that I'm majorly lazy and barely ever moisturise, when I found out they made hair care products I was almost literally bowled over. If you've recently read my Pregnancy Essentials blog post, then you'll know that I've recently been loving their Stretch Mark cream and being the na├»ve little blogger that I am, I had no idea their range really expanded any further than just body care products. I do have a separate post coming soon on some more of their bump/pregnancy range so make sure you keep an eye out for that by following but for now I wanted to talk to you about their amazing Olive Oil Formula range for hair! 

The first product I need you to know about (yes you read that right; you need to know about this product) is the Palmer's Olive Oil Formula Cleansing Conditioner Co-Wash. When I opened up the PR package and saw this I was honestly confused; so it's a conditioner but also a shampoo alternative? I have to admit that for probably the first time in my life I actually sat and read the directions on this before using it - let's be honest, how many times have you grabbed a new product and just gone in guns blazing without actually reading the instructions? I'm so glad that I did though because I would have definitely got this one wrong had I just stormed ahead. This Cleansing Conditioner Co-Wash is a non-lathering shampoo and conditioner concoction that you massage into your scalp and lengths of your hair and leave for the majority of your shower before rinsing out. There's no need for any other shampoos or conditioners to support it and although it is a little bit of a strange concept, I really loved it. I used around 30 pumps for my hair when around 20 is recommended for short hair and between 20-40 for longer hair and massaged this into my scalp and ends. After leaving for the remainder of my shower (which was about 5 minutes) I rinsed it out and then towel dried my hair like normal and my godddd my hair has been loving me ever since! I decided to not blow dry the first time I used this as I wanted to see how my hair reacted to it naturally and I swear to God this left my hair leaving incredibly soft. It felt like my hair had been to rehab and I've been very very impressed! As it is quite a scalp heavy, oil based product I won't be using this every time I wash my hair, but in the past two weeks I've used it twice (washing my hair roughly every three days as I've been swimming more) and my hair just feels so so nourished and healthy and right now I couldn't recommend this more!

Next up is the Olive Oil Leave in Conditioner and before I even start talking about this I have to say I've never really been a massive fan of these kinds of products. Leave in conditioners scare me a little as I absolutely hate the feel of too many products in my hair and I always feel like they weigh my hair down quite a bit; it's never been a product I've ever purchased or reached for out of choice, but I was really looking forward to giving this a go to see if it could change my mind! To start off with, I spritzed in two to three sprays of this into my dry & frizzy hair (thank you swimming with my hair in a bun) and brushed it through after around a minute. Now, after doing this I realised that you're meant to spray it in to slightly damp hair so not the best of starts (see what I mean about rushing in and getting things wrong?) but it still had a pretty nice effect on my hair and didn't leave it feeling too heavy like others have done in the past. It definitely looked and felt a lot healthier and gave my hair a really nice shine too. Having made my mistake though, the next time I used it I sprayed it into my damp  / roughly towel dried hair two to three times and let it settle before brushing it through and this made a great difference. The ends of my hair appeared healthier and where my hair before looked a little frizzy and on the verge of splitting, this just gave it a new lease of life and gave it a much softer touch and less frizzy appearance. Having read the back of the bottle this time around I noticed that it was also perfect to use as a heat protectant with styling and is good for preventing split ends which was something I didn't think a leave in conditioner would do. I have to say, this product has definitely changed my mind on these products, and I will definitely be picking this up more often for an in-between wash hair pick-me-up!

Last but not least has been the Palmer's Olive Oil Formula Dry Oil Mist which again is a product that I wouldn't normally pick up as I hate having my hair feeling weighty or too oily but I've been really impressed with this! One or two sprays through the lengths of my hair is definitely enough for me and   makes it feel so alive and makes it look so much healthier and like a freshly washed barnet compared to a three day old mop (which lets be honest it almost always will be). All three Olive Oil Formula products I've tried have left my hair smelling absolutely incredible too, but for some reason this one has to be my favourite so far! This Palmer's Dry Oil seems so light weight too which is a nice change to other dry oil's I've tried in the past; I also haven't found it to make my hair too oily which for an olive oil based dry oil I find quite impressive and I've actually really been liking this. My hair often gets quite dry and brittle because of how much I'm throwing it up in a bun and am in the pool and having a product like this that I can just throw in my swim bag and refresh my hair with after is perfect!

I really haven't had the best experience with these kind of products previously and was quite nervous to try these out before I started testing (I'm literally so ridiculous) but having these products all impress me so much has been great. Like I've mentioned above I'll definitely be keeping the Conditioning Co-Wash in my haircare routine from now on and the other two bits are perfect for the in-between days or when I'm having a swim. It's so nice to find products that suit my lifestyle and that are great for the hair too! All three of these products are free of sulphates and parabens too which makes me even more inclined to use them on my hair! Have you tried any of Palmer's Olive Oil range before? What do you make of them or would these be something you're likely to pick up and try?

BekyLou, Beauty, Fashion, Fitness and Lifestyle Blog based in the South West and London.
(*this post may contain items gifted to me for PR purposes*)


Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Shopping Beauty with Ideal World TV

Shopping online for beauty bits is always easy for me; I usually head to the same websites that I know and love and normally always have something in mind before I go to purchase. I never really stray from the brands that I'm used to and don't really buy a product if I can't try them before I buy (or at least read a couple of pretty fabulous reviews) especially when it comes to slightly pricier products.  When it comes to makeup and skincare I usually know what I like and so to part with my cash on a brand I've never heard of is an almost impossible feat. When I was approached by Ideal World to receive one of their bloggers boxes though I was pretty excited, having never shopped with them before or tried some of the products they have to offer, I was like a kid in a sweet shop and couldn't wait to get my hands on them. Being set in my ways, buying from a website like Ideal World had never really occurred to me before and so I felt extremely lucky to be sent a box of goodies to try out and review. For this blog post I've picked out all of the beauty bits that were very generously sent across to me; the box was packed to the brim full of incredible products and I can't wait to get trying them all, but for now I wanted to showcase some of the stand outs! Keep your eyes peeled over the coming weeks for more reviews, specifically skincare related.

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Tan-Luxe Illuminating Self Tanning Facial Drops

Applying fake tan is always such a ball ache. I'm not going to beat around the bush here, applying fake tan is probably one of the least enjoyable moments in life and I definitely see it as more of a chore than a beauty task I love doing weekly. Every tan I've ever tried has always had some kind of issue with it; I mean it could be the most perfect tan and after waiting a couple of hours before washing it off it could give the most perfect glow, but there's still the fact of having to wait to wash it off. If there's one thing we all know over here on it's that I'm incredibly impatient and for me that usually means tanning on the weekly is a no go. One product that I've recently been trying  out however is one that I think I can get on board with.

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Magnitone Go Bare Lady Shaver Review

As a lady with hair and a lady who's hair (like all of us) grows wherever the hell it likes on her body, an easy to use shaver is a must-have. I've struggled for years to get my shaving down to a 'T' and even now at the age of 22, I still don't like my routine. However, I was recently kindly sent a new product from Magnitone (you know, the guys who make my favourite facial cleansing brush?) and the days of crappy razors are now behind me. Since receiving this beautiful shell shaped shaver in the post, I haven't used anything else. The Magnitone Go Bare is a 2 in 1 Trimmer + Shaver specifically designed for us ladies to help us with our intimate shaving; it's clever design boasts a two sided shaving head for a closer and more intimate shave and can be used wet or dry. The Go Bare is also 'handbag sized' according to the packaging, but honestly it's so much smaller than you'd think; I'm able to easily hold this in the palm of one hand, which makes it absolutely perfect for taking on the go with you. It even has a special travel safety feature, which means it's a great tool for travelling and you won't have those awkward moments where it's magically turned itself on during your journeys! 


Monday, 17 July 2017

How I get Sensationail Gel Nails at Home

The first time I had my nails gelled I didn't really know what was going on. My boyfriend at the time had suggested getting my nails done (long story short he was a bit pushy when it came to my appearance) and so I trotted off to a salon in the centre of Manchester with my friend Amy and sat down to have my nails pampered. I chose gel acrylics as my little stubs were less than desirable even with a lick of polish and thus started my once-every-four-week obsession to have my talons redone. I loved the look of them, how long they lasted and how easy they were to wear and although it was an expensive hobby, they were so much better than painting my nails at home and so much less hassle!


Monday, 10 July 2017

My Pregnancy Essential Products.

When I found out that I was pregnant I wanted to make sure I did everything I could to ensure this baby was healthy and happy growing inside me. I wanted to grab as many vitamins as I could, wanted to slather my belly in as many creams and potions as I could get my hands on to ensure my skin stayed supple and stretch-mark free and wanted to know everything I could about keeping baby happy. When it came down to it though it turns out there have only been a couple of products I've actually needed / used during my last two trimesters and as I'm now on the slow approach to the finish line with just 7 short weeks to go, I thought it was about time I gave you a round up of my fave products that have helped me through. 


Wednesday, 5 July 2017

KISS ImPress One-Touch Gel Nails Review

For many years I was far too lazy to do anything with my nails. I didn't file them regularly, I barely ever painted them and I'm ashamed to say, I was a biter. When my nails aren't looking their best and 'prettified' as I like to call them, I'm an absolute menace when it comes to nibbling them down to nothing. I never looked after my hands and nails properly and just couldn't be bothered with the faff of doing them. If you haven't gathered through reading my posts before, I'm not the most patient person in the world.

When I moved to Manchester and started taking more pride in my appearance (after being a little pushed into looking a certain way by my then boyfriend) I began getting my nails done at a Chinese salon. I had acrylics applied every four weeks for the majority of the year that I lived there and absolutely loved the way they looked. It was an expensive hobby and one that completely ruined my nails but the way that they looked and the way that I felt wearing them was worth it to me. 

When I moved back to Wiltshire and had quit my job I had my acrylics taken off and tried to work with the nails I had left. Long story short, they were papery and frail and looked horrible. I used so many nail strengthening products to try and get them back to life but after a few months, gave up and went back to biting them again. That was until my sister-in-law Emily started applying gel to them at home for me and I loved the way they looked again. After a few weeks of Emily painting them for me, I finally got my own kit and started gelling them myself, I loved the way they looked and they lasted so much longer than normal nail polish (which I have never been bothered with as it takes FAR too long to dry). With application taking barely any time and with them being good to go from the moment you wipe finishing product over them, gel was my go-to for everyday nails that lasted, but they just still weren't as pretty as my acrylics. I will have a post up soon on how I gel them myself though so please do let me know if you'd be interested in seeing that! 

I was introduced to Kiss ImPress nails a few weeks ago when I was very kindly sent a PR package with a couple of packets in. Having never been a fan of false nails at home, I pushed them to one side and didn't really give them much attention. Until of course I was bored one day and just had to have a play around. Turns out the ImPress nails (which are now endorsed by Pixie Lott) are one-touch application nails that don't require any glue or lengthy removal method, they basically press on and are ready to go!

I fell in love instantly with the designs and how easy they were to apply; for a day or two's wear, they're pretty spectacular. Obviously, being just 'stick on' they don't last long at all but for a special occasion they're just perfect! I did have higher hopes for how long these would last and being quite lazy, having to re-do my nails every couple of days is just a bit too much for me, but with these being instantly gorgeous and instantly party ready (or blog photo ready) they're pretty ideal. To apply these you prep your nails by filing and wiping over with the included prep wipe and then simply match up the correct size nails, peel back the film and firmly stick into place. That's it. That's all it takes to have beautiful nails with these. I was completely surprised by how simple they were and how well they lasted for the two days I've so far worn each set. You probably could get a bit more out of them, but by this time they usually start catching in my hair and on things and I'd honestly just have a day or two out of them than have this! They're not ideal if you're looking for a week long stint from your manicure but for a weekend, a night out or special occasion, these are fantastic. They stay on incredibly well, are pretty resilient with what they can handle and are some of the best stick on nails I've tried!

You can pick up your Kiss imPress nails online.
The beautiful Ring by featured in these photos can also be found online!

BekyLou, Beauty, Fashion, Fitness and Lifestyle Blog based in the South West and London.
(*this post may contain items gifted to me for PR purposes*)

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