Saturday, 30 November 2013

Redmond Earthpaste Cinnamon Toothpaste

Purely Natural Cosmetics contacted me to ask if I'd like to try one of Redmond's natural toothpastes. I chose the Cinnamon flavour to try (113g - £7.30).

Earthpaste doesn't contain SLS, Titanium Dioxide or any unnatural additives. It does take a bit of getting used to as it doesn't foam up like normal toothpaste and it is naturally coloured. The cinnamon variety tastes great! It has a spicy cinnamon/clove flavour.  It contains purified water, Food Grade Redmond Clay which polishes and cleans, Xylitol, a natural sweetner, Cinnamon Essential Oil which flavours, Redmond Real Salt which has antibacterial properties and Tea Tree Essential Oil which promotes oral health. 

I'm really enjoying using this toothpaste. It leaves my teeth clean and my breath fresh and I love that it is a natural product. 

Available in three other flavours - Wintergreen, Spearmint and Lemon Twist. I was also sent some trial size sachets.

See Purely Natural Website here
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Have you tried this toothpaste before?

*PR sample

Friday, 29 November 2013

November Empties

The months are whizzing by - can't believe it's empties time again!

Sranrom Calm Down Hand Cream 30g - this came in a Souk Souk box. Loved the Lemongrass scent and moisturising properties. Would buy.

Korres Guava Shower Gel 250ml - my favourite Korres scent - sure to re-purchase.

L'Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream 30ml - again another favourite hand cream. Sure to buy it again or pick up in an offer.

Kai Body Wash 59ml - love the scent of Kai perfume oil. The body wash smells exactly like it. Full size definitely on my wishlist.

Elemis Pro-Radiance Hand & Nail Cream 30ml - love this super moisturising hand cream. Will pick this up again sometime.

Peppy Galore Rebel Face Moisturiser sample* - three samples came free if you signed up to the Peppy Galore newsletter. This cream had a nice texture but I hated the scent (Tea Tree) in fact I couldn't finish the pot.

Peppy Galore Vanilla Ice Cream Body Mousse sample* - I found this had a strange texture but it smoothed onto the body fine and the scent was nice. 

SW Basics Cream mini pot - love how moisturising this is. Sure to buy a pot when I use up some of my stash.

balance Me Skinbright Hydrating Face Mist 60ml - I simply adore this! One of my top products of the year. Sure to pick it up again...and soon.

ila Hydrolat Toner Damascena Rose Water 30ml* - simply loved this. It came in a mini set which I reviewed here*.  Definitely one I'd consider purchasing.

raw gaia organic shea body butter 15ml - this was lovely to use but I think I slightly prefer the coconut body butter.

raw gaia organic floral face toner 10ml - simply loved this light floral toner. Will definitely purchase full size at some point.

Hairy Jayne Nourishing Shampoo 30ml - a gorgeous rich and nourishing shampoo which smells divine.  See my review here.

bare innocence Essence of Vali Uplift Massage & Bath Oil* - see my review here. A really lovely oil and one I'd consider purchasing.

Melvita Apicosma Body Balm 15ml - a gorgeous rich balm which I've already bought full size.

Freyaluna Skin Support Cleansing Cream sample pot - this came in November's Souk Souk beauty box. Was nice enough to use but I felt it a bit heavy on my skin. 

balance Me Rose Otto Body Wash 100ml* - a firm favourite. Sure to buy at some point.

ila Day Cream for Glowing Radiance sample pot* - love this rich moisturising cream. It's on my wishlist!

Have you used any of these?

*PR samples

Thursday, 28 November 2013

HealGel Intensive

I was recently sent HealGel Intensive* (30ml - £37.50) to try and review. I'm already a huge fan of HealGel Eye* and you can see my review here.

HealGel Intensive is an aqueous gel which is light, non-greasy, easily absorbed and lightly scented. I love that it is a multi-purpose product - one of my favourite kinds! It helps deliver active elements to the areas most needed and boosts collagen production.

Initially created by a team of plastic surgeons and a dermatological Biochemist to help shorten post-op recovery time for cosmetic surgery procedures.

Suitable for all skin types it has a variety of uses - 
  • It can help ease skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema
  • Reduce the appearance of scars and stretchmarks
  • Relive bruises, strains and burns
  • Calm, cool and soothe irritations
  • Reduce redness and swelling
  • Fight blemishes/acne
  • Firm the skin
  • Smooth fine lines and wrinkles
  • Can be used to help de-puff eye bags
  • Use as a primer before applying make up
To use: apply a small amount to clean and unbroken skin up to three times a day.

I've been using the HealGel Intensive as a primer, to relieve areas of eczema, as an eye gel and on dry patches of skin.

Have you used this product?  What are your thoughts?

*PR sample

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

12 Days of Christmas at Big Green Smile

Big Green Smile is running a 12 days of Christmas Natural Beauty Giveaway starting on 1st December. You can enter here although the giveaway won't go live until Sunday 1st December.

You can see below the gorgeous prizes on offer:

Winners will be notified by 20th December.  Here's what you can win:

Day 1 - Nourish Argan Beauty Collection (this contains the very fabulous Nourish Illuminating Golden Glow Face Shimmer which I reviewed here).

Day 9 - Jason Aloe Hair & Body - Body LotionShampoo and Conditioner

Day 11 - Green People Skin Care Best Seller Duo - Day Solution and Cleanser

Day 12 - Yes To Carrots Body Pamper Rich Body Butter & Hand and Elbow Cream

Simply fabulous prizes! Remember to enter the giveaway staring 1st December. Enter here.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Kris D'Amour Beauty

Kris contacted me and asked if I'd like to try a selection of his products.  The range is natural and luxurious. Products are created by Kris Wronski, a professional Medical Scientist who has spent the last 12 years studying and working at Leeds St James's University Hospital.

He has spent many years looking for the right products to treat his own skin. He suffers from skin allergies, eczema and acne and decided to create his own range of products - Kris D'Amour.

Made from pure plant oils and naturally derived ingredients the range is designed to suit all skin types. All products are free from artificial chemicals and synthetic compounds such as cortisones, peroxides and parabens.

Rejuvenating Body Treatment Butter* (100ml - £16) - a super luxe body butter which combines Organic Argan, Rosehip, Strawberry Seed and Apple Seed and is enriched with Co-enzyme Q10.  It contains essential oils of Frankincense, Rosewood, Neroli and Jasmine.  It also contains Carrot Seed Oil, Goji Berry, Ginseng, Gotu Kola, Ginkgo and Olive Leaf. It's packed full of Organic and Unrefined Shea and Cocoa butters along with Coconut Oil and Kukui Butter. Suitable for all skin types.  Melts into the skin leaving it super moisturised and lightly scented.

I was also sent two samples of Soothing Body Treatment Butter* and Skin Repair Body Treatment Butter*.

Rejuvenating Facial Treatment Oil* (30ml - £32) - this contains some of the same ingredients which are in the body treatment butter. It also includes Olive Squalane and Evening Primrose Oil.  It helps to stimulate the cells and regenerate the tissue, protect against free radicals and help slow down the progression of wrinkles.  I've only been using this product for a short while so I'll review it in fuller detail soon.

I was also sent a sample of Intensive Soothing Facial Treatment Oil* - which is suitable for dry, sensitive and dehydrated skin types which are prone to irritation. It helps to reduce redness, fight inflammation and fix broken capillaries. 

You can get 15% off if you spend £30 and above using code CKD2013 which is valid until 20 January 2014.

Have you used any of these products? What are your thoughts?

*PR samples

Monday, 25 November 2013

November: Lately I've Been Loving

My friend Jess sent me a gorgeous box of Sciolti Botanical Chocolates - which sure did put a smile on my face!  These delicious chocolates come in a range of exciting and unusual flavours. You can see the website here.

We had lunch at a local restaurant The Dogs - comfort food at it's very best! A quirky restaurant with mismatched glasses and plates. It has a buzzy atmosphere and serves great food. It's also very reasonably priced. They do a different menu at dinner - want to go soon! I ate a delicious and fresh tasting salad with crowdie cheese, salad leaves and salsa verde dressing and smoked fish kedgree with soft boiled egg. We shared a delicious lemon posset with an oat & ginger biscuit.

I also visited a great bar in Edinburgh called 56 North which serves a staggering 80 gins! They also offer gin classes - see here - think I must book one soon. Throughout December they are offering a Ginvent Advent - a different gin will be available with Fever Tree tonic for the 24 days of Advent at £2.95 a day.

I drank a very delicious cocktail - Cucumber Tea - which was made with Hendricks gin, cucumber, chamomile flowers, lemon and topped up with fizz. I love that it's served in a tea cup with saucer. 

The perfume which I've been wearing every single day in November is Shay & Blue Atropa Belladonna. I'm simply in love with it. See my recent review here.

The skincare product I can't live without is 001 Intensive Elixir* this amazing product makes my skin glow!  See my review here.

What have you been loving this month?

*PR sample

Sunday, 24 November 2013

ESPA Optimal Skin ProSerum

I've recently been trying ESPA Optimal Skin ProSerum* (8ml) ESPA's latest launch. It contains plant extracts, omegas 3, 6 and 9 and Vitamins A & E as well as proactive natural extracts of Turmeric, White Lupin and Sunflower which brighten and even the skintone, enhance elasticity, firm and protect the skin leaving it revitalised, radiant and soft and smooth.  It serum smells absolutely beautiful and is really lovely to use. It contains Essential oils of Rose and Patchouli.

ESPA say the "power of a super serum with the exceptional nourishment of a face treatment oil".

To use: press a few drops onto cleansed face and neck. Can be used AM/PM before moisturising.

The serum absorbs quickly into the skin leaving it feeling moisturised. In the evening I apply it alone without added moisturiser. 

Full size retails at £48 for 30ml. I'm excited to see there is a mini bottle included in the YOU Advent Calendar.

Have you used this serum?  Do you use any other ESPA products?

*PR sample

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Shopping My Stash #38

These are the products I'm reaching for this week:

bare innocence Cocoa & Shea Butter Cream* (£8 - 100ml) - I was sent this lush body butter to review. It's scented with Jasmine, Orange and Geranium and is perfect to use to uplift and moisturise the body.

Ancienne Ambiance Goddess Rose Water Spray 30ml* - a spray scented with roses which can be used as a toner, a face mist and as a light cleanser.

ila Face Oil for Glowing Radiance* (10ml) a simply wonderful face oil scented with rose. See my reviews here and here. This is one of the nicest facial oils I've ever used. 

ila Day Cream for Glowing Radiance* (20g) - a rich cream which I use either mixed with the face oil or alone.  See my review here. Again, this is one I'd purchase.

Wild Honey Apothecary Strawberry Honey Mud - I received this in my swap from Jen. This is an amazing mask handmade by Kat in Winconsin. It smells exactly like strawberries. Packed full of good things it leaves the skin glowing and radiant. Fuller review to follow.

BECCA Beach Tint in Grapefruit 7ml - a grapefruit scented lip and cheek tint. A really wearable shade. This came in a free gift from SpaceNK this week.

Neal's Yard Bee Lovely Hand Cream (50ml) - this lovely hand cream was a magazine freebie a while back. Super gorgeous, smells of oranges and helps save the bees. 

What have you been using this week?

*PR samples

Friday, 22 November 2013

Beauty900 Online Store: Dermalogica Stockist

I was recently sent some Dermalogica products from Beauty900 an online store which specialises in the brand. The site is run by Shumailas Hair and Beauty which is a beauty salon with five branches in East London and Essex (you can follow them on Twitter ).  They offer free UK delivery and samples with every order.

I was sent a couple of mini try me sets* (I'm already a huge fan of Daily Microfoliant).

Full reviews will follow soon.  Have you used any Dermalogica products? What's your favourites?

*PR samples

Macadamia Healing Oil Spray is one of the UK's leading online retailers of hair extensions, hair care and beauty products from top brands.

I was recently sent Macadamia Healing Oil Spray* (60ml £7.35) to review.  I'm a huge fan of the Healing Oil Treatment.

This spray is best used on towel dried hair before blow drying although you can use it to add shine on dry hair.

It rejuvenates, nourishes, conditions and helps to smooth any frizz.  An ultra-fine mist which feels lightweight on the hair. It also helps to de-tangle and smells pretty good too.

Drying time is reduced by 40-50% making it great to use when you are in a rush.

My hair is left shiny, manageable and static free.  

Have you used any Macadamia products? What's your favourite hair care product?

*PR sample

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Indie Lee Blemish Lotion

I bought Indie Lee's Blemish Lotion (1oz - £14) recently.  A "overnight sensation to fix those pesky blemishes".  It treats spots, reduces redness, inflammation and irritations.

Containing the finest all natural ingredients including Sulphur which absorbs oil, Salicylic Acid which disinfects the pores, Clay which draws out toxins and impurities and Camphor which diminishes redness and inflammation.

Allow the product to settle and dip a cotton bud into the sediment and dab it onto the affected area - it may sting for a moment or two.  Let it dry for a couple of hours or overnight (it dries on the skin pink) and then remove with warm water. 

The lotion dries and heals spots and blemishes. It's one of those products I wonder how I lived without before! This little bottle will last for ages making it great value for money.

You can buy the Indie Lee range at a beautiful world

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Shay and Blue - Atropa Belladonna Natural Spray

I recently treated myself to a gorgeous Shay & Blue perfume - Atropa Belladonna. I smelt it blind having first read about it on The Sunday Girl blog and fell in love with the sound of it. 

Packaging is super luxe. My order also included a brochure which tells you about the brand and the other perfumes and candles available.

Dom De Vetta founded Shay & Blue in 2012 having previous been ex-Senior Vice President of Chanel and former Global General Manager of Jo Malone London. Julie Massé is the Perfumer and together they have created perfumes which are "deliciously decadent, daringly different".

You can buy the Shay & Blue range online or instore at 30 York Street, Old Marylebone, London as well as from a range of department stores see here.

The perfumes are created using real flowers, fruits and spices. These are hand harvested, weighed and distilled with passion, care and attention to detail.

Atropa Belladonna Natural Spray (30ml - £30) Atropa Belladonna is Italian for "beautiful Lady" and it is also known as poisonous deadly nightshade.  It contains dark cassis berries, white flower blooms of narcissus and jasmine with a base of bourbon vanilla and patchouli.  It is quite simply one of the nicest scents I own! It is fruity, slightly floral, heady and sweet. You can also buy it in 100ml - £55 and as a candle 140g - £35.

Other scents - Blood Oranges, Amber Rose, Sicilian Lime, Suffolk Lavender, Almond Cucumber and Oud Alif. You can also buy samples which are great try-before-you-buy testers - see here. There are also some enticing gift sets available - see here.

See the website here
Follow on Twitter  

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Lyonsleaf: Beauty Balm & Body Butter

Ben & Vicky Lyons run Lyonsleaf from their smallholding in the Mendip hills. They grow vegetables and herbs as well as keeping pigs and sheep.

They grow as much as they can to use in their skin and body care products and choose to use natural unprocessed oils and butters.

Products are water free so don't require any added preservatives or chemicals. The products are made using simple recipes with pure ingredients extracted from plants.  Suitable for Vegetarians and Vegans (unless otherwise stated).

An affordable range and the packaging is stylish as well as being recyclable. Until the end of November you can get 20% off using code LYONS20.  See the website here.

I was sent Beauty Balm* (£12.95 60ml) and Body Butter* (£12.95 120ml) to review.

Beauty Balm* - this multi-purpose balm which is packed full of Shea butter, Babassu, Macadamia Nut and Jojoba oils, home grown Calendula along with Essential Oils.

You can use this balm as a cleanser or a moisturiser making it great for travelling or if you just want to reduce the amount of products you use.

To cleanse: massage balm into face and neck and remove with a warmed damp muslin cloth. Repeat until the skin is clean.

To moisturise: you only need a tiny amount of the balm. Apply to cleansed skin.

The balm can also be used for dry areas of skin - lips, elbows, knees and heels.

Body Butter* - I simply love this rich and fluffy butter. It glides onto the skin and quickly absorbs as well as smelling beautiful. It contains Essential oils of Clary Sage, Black Pepper and Geranium along with Calendula Flower extract and is stuffed full of nourishing organic raw Shea butter, organic Coconut oil, organic cold pressed Avocado oil, cold pressed Sweet Almond oil and natural Vitamin E oil.

To moisturise: apply to the skin as required. Perfect to use after a bath or shower.

I've been really enjoying using both products and when I run out I'll purchase (especially the body butter!).  See the website here. There are also some interesting looking Aromatherapy Bath Teas which I may pick up at some point.

Follow on Twitter @Lyonsleaf
Follow on Facebook here

*PR samples
** Top two photos courtesy of Lyonsleaf

Monday, 18 November 2013

REN Vita Mineral Lip Balm

REN's Vita Mineral Lip Balm* (15ml - £9) is a rich balm which nourishes, soothes and smooths dry and chapped lips.  It repairs, protects and softens. 

It contains Vitamin E, from soyabean which protects against free radicals, Acacia honey which has anti-bacterial properties, Calendula and Propolis which soothes, along with Shea and Cocoa butters which replenish and repair. It is free from mineral oil and petroleum.

Suitable for all skin types and especially good for using during these chilly autumn days. It leaves the lips looking glossy and moisturised. It's always in my bag these days. Apply as often as needed.

Have you used this balm?  What's your favourite lip care product?

*PR sample

Sunday, 17 November 2013

oh! Organic Head Organic & Botanical Haircare

My friend Julie knew I'd been wanting to try the oh! Organic Head range by Galvin & Galvin which is exclusive to Morrisons supermarket. Our local store is quite a small one so I was absolutely made up when we recently met up and she gave me a selection from the range - thanks Julie!

Celebrity colourist and Prince's Trust Ambassador, Daniel Galvin Jr has created the Organic Head hair care range which are free from parabens, SLS, mineral oils and animal ingredients. The products are rich in Essential Oils, Aloe Vera, Argan Oil and Wheat proteins.  The range includes shampoos and conditioners as well as styling products. 

Oh! Detox & Purify Shampoo (£4 - 250ml) - a great shampoo for lack-lustre locks or an oily scalp. It nourishes and revitalises the hair. Contains antioxidant rich Argan extract and Wheat proteins to improve elasticity and strengthen ends. I've only been using the product for a week but I've found this shampoo to cleanse, nourish and detox hair.

Oh! Detox Hair Masque (£4 - 150ml) - this is a super rich conditioner which leave hair soft and super smooth with tons of shine. It deeply cleanses the scalp which removes product build up while adding volume to the hair. Hair cuticles are smoothed with Coconut, Argan, Orange and Castor oils plus Vitamins C & E which help aid hair growth and protects colour. I think this is my favourite product so far. It is recommended to heat up a damp towel in the microwave before wrapping it round your head and relaxing for 25 minutes.

Oh! Huge Hair Mousse (£4 - 150ml) - "build incredible long lasting height to your roots".  I've not used mousse for years! Still to try this one.  You can read more about it here. Review will follow once I've tried it out.

Oh! Anti-Frizz Serum (£4 - 50ml) - great to tame flyaway hair or any frizz. With organic Argan and Orange Oils which help to strengthen and repair. Use on towel dried hair before blow drying or on dry hair to smoothe and add shine. I'm enjoying using this. Makes the hair look shiny and frizz free.

I've loved these products so far and they are so affordable. See the website here

Follow on Twitter @danielgalvinjn

Saturday, 16 November 2013

Souk Souk November Beauty Box

My November Souk Souk box has just arrived and I love it!

Inner Me Beautify Me Vitamin Complex (worth £15) - the ultimate beauty supplement for skin, hair and nails.

Soak Yourself 100% Natural Soap - a handmade artisan soap which is free from SLS, parabens, mineral oils and artificial fragrances. Huge lover of bars of soap so looking forward to try it.

Freyaluna mini Try me Selection box - I've tried a selection box before - see here. I'm happy to receive these in my box - Cleansing Cream, Facial Moisturiser, Facial Tonic and Lip, Face & Body Butter sample. Great try me size (and I'll re-use the pots!)

Also nice to see Tracey from  in the Souk Souk mag.

Did you get this month's box?  What are your thoughts on the contents?

Dr Organic Pomegranate Skin Lotion

I'm a huge fan of Dr Organic. The range can be bought at Holland & Barrett both instore and online.

I was recently sent their Organic Pomegranate Skin Lotion* (retails at £7.19 for 200ml). There is an offer on just now if you buy one product you get the second half price.

This is a light lotion which absorbs easily into the skin leaving it moisturised and smelling sweetly.  It has a slightly floral and fruity scent.

The pomegranate "super fruit" protects the skin from harmful free radicals. It also contains aloe vera, shea butter, cocoa butter, olive oil, sunflower oil, Irish moss and Vitamins A and E.

Leaves the skin soft, smooth and hydrated.  

Have you used this product?  What's your favourite Dr Organic product.

See the website here
Follow on Twitter  

*PR sample

Friday, 15 November 2013

Catherine Aitken Edinburgh - Bags & Accessories

Catherine Aitken makes amazing bags, manbags, toiletries & shoe bags as well as accessories from her studio in Leith, Edinburgh.  See the full range here. I recently became aware of Catherine's bags when I entered a competition to win one - sadly I didn't (but I'm saving up for Hobo Renaissance Annie (£185) or Bow Clutch Tweed (£65).

Catherine works with heritage cloths - Harris Tweed handwoven in the Outer Hebrides, Linens woven in Fife, Waxed Cottons from Dundee, Mohairs and Tartans from the Borders and Deerskin Leather from the West Coast.

Catherine previously worked in film and TV producing feature films and TV dramas.  She first designed and produced handbags to promote a film she was financing at the Cannes Film Festival. Three years ago she gave all this up to concentrate making her own handbags and accessories.

The Renaissance range is made from recycled vintage jackets. My favourite from this range is the Hobo Renaissance Annie (£185)

This bag is created from two vintage Harris Tweed jackets. The original flap pocket is on the front of the bag and the top jacket pocket is on the back - ideal for storing your mobile, bus fares or lip balm.

Heavyweight black waxed canvas creates the base. The inside is lined with with Scottish linen.  There is double slot pockets inside and a zip across the top with a leather puller. The bag is finished with brass fittings and a brown leather handle.

The Bow Clutch Tweed (£65) in Green Check is another bag I'm lusting over. Just perfect for taking for a night out or for using during the day.
This bag is made with Harris Tweed and lined in silk. The same silk is on the bow. It's a pouch style bag which folds over and closes with a magnetic snap. 

You can see the full range (including manbags) here
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*photos courtesy of Catherine Aitken