Skincare

Dry Skincare Routine

Finding the right skincare routine for you can be a drag. As most of you know, I suffer with super dry, dehydrated skin. It’s also quite freckly and dull and I’ve always struggled to find the right mix of products to tackle these issues. I finally feel happy with my skincare routine and thought I would share it with you with the hope that it will help some of you with similar issues.

Cleanser: 

 

I was sent the Skinstitut Glycolic Cleanser for reviewing purposes a few months ago and am pleased to say I think I have found the perfect dry skin cleanser! It is so brightening and I sometimes use it to remove makeup too (which it does an awesome job of)! I absolutely love this cleanser! Big thumbs up from me!

Scrub:

 

The Neutrogena Naturals Purifying Pore Scrub is another newer product that I love for my sin type! I use it about every second or third day depending on how my skin is feeling and it does a great job of cleaning my skin out without sucking all the moisture out at the same time! It has jojoba oil in it too which makes it nice and moisturising!

Toner:

 

I am absolutely in love with the Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe, Herbs and Rosewater! It is super hydrating and I use it both morning and night (and sometimes during the day as a refresher) as toner and I’ll definitely keep repurchasing it!

Oil:

 

I have fallen in love with the Skinstitut Multi-Active Oil after I was sent it in a PR package! It contains lots of lovely oils that brighten and hydrate my skin unlike any other serum or oil I have tried! I apply it both morning and night to my face and neck and let that sink in before I apply moisturiser.

Moisturiser:

 

An old favourite of mine is the Cetaphil Moisturising Cream for dry, sensitive skin! I have pretty sensitive skin and suffer from a few allergies that make my skin flare up so this is my favourite moisturiser for calming everything down and keeping my face moisturised all day – especially with the help of the Skinstitut oil! It’s also super cheap so you can’t really go wrong!

Eye Cream:

 

The Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Eye Concentrate is, as you can tell from the title, meant to be only used at night but I find it so moisturising that I use it both morning and night! Kathleen Lights got me on to this just over a year ago and I haven’t looked back! Sooooooo good!

SPF:

 

I use the La Roche-Posay 50+ very high protection stick every morning because it isn’t at all sticky or greasy and doesn’t make my makeup look weird over the top! I can’t find the stick form online but I bought it at Priceline and you can buy the liquid version which is just as nice here.

Lip Balm:

 

The Vanny P lip balms are created by a small business in Western Australia with all natural ingredients! At the moment I am loving the Floral Passion scent for a bit of spring loving!

Night Cream:

 

You have most likely heard me rave about the Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask before – but it’s for good reason I promise! This product has absolutely changed my skin! You will wakeup feeling so hydrated and refreshed after using this, I promise! I sometimes use it on days when I’m feeling extra dry and am not wearing makeup too, it’s just that good!

Cleansing Mask:

 

  

The Tru Self Organics Detoxifying Mask is my absolute favourite clay face mask of all time! If I ever have a pimple I mix this up, pop it on for 20 minutes and once I have rinsed it off my skin looks 1000 times better! It isn’t too drying either so it’s safe to use if you are really dry!

Moisturising Mask:

 

  

This is the final Skinstitut product in this post I swear! Their Hydrating Mask is out of this world! If you are having a flare up of flakeyness or skin irritation chuck this on and you feel at least a million times better!

I know it might seem like a lot to do but trust me, for anyone who has dry, irritated skin you know how much it is worth getting rid of dry patches! Using these products will not only make your skin more radiant and hydrated but your makeup will sit on it so much better and look amazing!

I hope this has helped at least some of you!

Stay Happy,

M xx

 

Empties June 2016

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Hair Care

NKD Hair Mask – Citrus

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This mask gives me life. The citrus scent isn’t my favourite smell in the world, but it’s by no means bad. Other than that I am a huge fan! It makes my hair so soft and saved my locks throughout summer. I have been giving this as gifts this year and people love it. I am super keen to try the newer vanilla scent, yuuumm!

Repurchase? Definitely.

 

Toni&Guy Dry Shampoo – Cleanse

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First of all, this packaging is just so sleek and elegant. I’m not gonna lie, that is 99% of the reason I chose to buy this brand, it looks so good in my bathroom. As for the actual product… I liked it, I just didn’t love it. It claims to “create second day volume and freshness”, and it did make my hair feel slightly cleaner, but nowhere near as much as other brands. It gave me a little volume, but again, nowhere near as much as other brands. The scent was not great, I got used to it eventually but initially I was really hating on the smell, and it stuck around all day. What I did love was the lack of that dry-shampoo-white-streak that you get with other brands when you first apply it. This baby did not have that issue.

Repurchase? Probably not.

 

Skin care

Bobbi Brown Hydrating Face Tonic

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My mum actually bought this toner, and decided she didn’t like it pretty early in the piece and so gave it to me (gotta love that). I really liked this toner! As somebody who has traditionally skipped that step I was pleasantly surprised by the difference this made. It smells lovely (like cucumbers) and really added some hydration to my skincare routine. Is it worth the AU$48? I’m not sure. I have since replaced it with other cheaper hydrating toners and I feel they are doing a similar job for far less money.

Repurchase? If I win the lottery.

 

Bobbi Brown Extra Treatment Lotion

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Again, my mum gave me this after she decided she didn’t like it. It is another toner-esque product that you use post-cleanse and pre-moisturise. This baby will set you back a whopping AU$66, and I just don’t think it’s worth it. Did it hydrate my skin? Yes. Did it do it so much more than cheaper alternatives that I’m willing to sell my first born to purchase it? Not even close. I expected it to blow my mind and completely repair my dry skin. It didn’t.

Repurchase? Nope.

 

Michael Todd True Organics Cranberry Antiox Toner

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I LOVE this toner. This is the trial size but I have had the full size in the past. I have really loved all of the Michael Todd toners I have tried to be honest, it’s such a great brand, and so affordable for the quality and size of the product. This one is particularly great for dry or mature skin types. I like to use it in winter when my skin is struggling in the hydration department or when I am travelling.

Repurchase? For sure.

Sukin Moisture Restoring Night Cream

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I have reviewed this night cream before (see here) and I will love it until the day I die. Whenever I branch out and try another night cream I always seem to come crawling back to my first love. Even those products that match up in effectiveness don’t match up in price. So affordable and so good. I can’t recommend this enough.

Repurchase? Forever and always.

 

Moreish Euphoria Cream Cleanser

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I have recently done a review on a few of the Moreish skincare range (see here). As I said in that post, I liked this, but it just didn’t make me swoon.

Repurchase? Doubtful.

 

Moreish Liquid Gold Argan Oil

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I have recently done a review on a few of the Moreish skincare range (see here). As I said in that post, for my dry winter skin, this bad boy is my saviour. I was pleasantly surprised.

Repurchase? Yes.

 

Makeup

Reach Techniques Stippling Brush

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I realise that this isn’t technically an ‘empty’, but it’s ready to be thrown out, and for that reason I have included it. I love Real Techniques, I think their products are fabulous and at reasonable prices. We have been using them for years and for the most part they have lasted fantastically, with the exception of this little fella. All of a sudden, for no reason, the hairs just started coming out all over the place. We’ve treated it the same as all of the others, so…yeah, a bit disappointing.

Repurchase? If needed.

 

MAC Studio Face and Body Foundation

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We’ve have mentioned this in several favourites and must-have posts. It is my go-to on days when I just can’t decide what level of coverage I want or when my skin doesn’t love life. It’s perfect for natural days or beautifully buildable for a little more coverage. Big thumbs up from us!

Repurchase? I already had a backup in the cupboard.

 

Covergirl + Olay Serum Primer

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I picked this up when I was looking for a hydrating primer and it really came through. It was slightly more expensive for a drugstore product but I think it was worth it. Really helped to moisturise my skin to create a great base for my foundation.

Repurchase? For sure.

 

The Body Shop Moisturise It Skin Primer

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In general, I really love The Body Shop primers. They do exactly what it says on the bottle! And this one is no exception. This baby moisturises my skin and leaves it supple and hydrated ready for the rest of my makeup. Definitely recommend it for dry-skinned gals.

Repurchase? Definitely.

 

The Body Shop Matte It Skin Primer

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As I said, I love body shop primers. Whilst my skin is mostly dry, it is also sometimes combination, especially in my t-zone. In summer, my t-zone can freak out and become an oil slick. A bit of this primer in those oily areas and my makeup lasts longer than it does otherwise. I also love it in winter for nights out as it extends the wear of my foundation.

Repurchase? Yes.

 

Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Primer

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I purchased this in the middle of winter, hoping it would moisturise my skin and help ease the appearance of those small lines that dry skin + makeup seem to bring about. It hydrated, but it also left my skin feeling greasy and my makeup seemed to slip right off it, which is not anybody’s goal! It also made my skin breakout. Not winning on any fronts.

Repurchase? Hell no.

 

Chi Chi Fabulous and Flawless Foundation

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This was an early love of mine, and every time I come back to it I have a “omg this foundation really is just as great as I remember it being!”. Great coverage whilst also leaving a natural appearance, hydrating but not oily and it lasts all day. And so affordable! Love it.

Repurchase? Definitely.

What products have you used up lately? Let me know in the comments below – N x

 

 

Review: Moreish Skincare

One of my favourite things about being a beauty blogger is having an excuse to try out new products, even when there was nothing wrong with the ones I was already using. In the case of Moreish skincare, all it took was a small sale at Priceline and some super cute packaging. I mean really, look at it, that was always going to look amaze in my bathroom!

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Moreish is a New Zealand brand making skincare from pure superfoods such as argan oil, avocado and kiwi fruit. The whole idea behind their brand? “It’s called Moreish because your skin can’t get enough of it.” They are all things I like in a skincare brand, so I bought up. I gave my skincare routine an overhaul with their cream cleanser, day cream, eye cream and argan oil. Keep reading to see what I thought…

 

Euphoria | Cream Cleanser 200mL

Of all the products I purchased this was the biggest let down for me. The reason? Well it claims to remove makeup…it doesn’t. It took me several washes and even then it wasn’t all gone, even when I added bi-carb as my exfoliant. If that’s not really your thing anyway, this was actually a really lovely cleanser. Light-weight, non-drying and my skin seemed to love it.

 

Would I re-purchase? No. But only because I’m lazy and want a one-step cleanser.

 

Daily Redemption | Day Cream

When I first used this cream I did not hold high hopes. It’s super lightweight, and I expected that to result in my skin feeling dry and irritated. I am pleased to say I was wrong! This product was great. I mostly used it mixed in with a drop or two of argan oil, and it kept my skin feeling lovely all day long. It also worked well under makeup, really moisturising and preparing my skin for the base products. All it all I really liked it. I probably wouldn’t recommend this to people with exceptionally dry skin (mine is dry, but not overly so), but everyone else, I really liked it!!

 

Would I re-purchase? Yep! Definitely keeping an eye out for the next Priceline sale.

 

Reawaken | Eye Cream

This is probably my favourite product of the lot. It is super creamy, and I thought that was going to make it greasy and unpleasant, but (as seems to be a theme so far) I was wrong! It absorbs easily and left my usually dry and irritated eye area feeling nourished and moisturised. Big thumbs up from me. The only slight annoyance (and it’s small), it that the shape of the lid makes it really hard to open when you’ve recently moisturised your face! But really, it’s no big deal in the big scheme of life.

 

Would I repurchase? Definitely. Love it!

 

Liquid Gold | Pure Argan Oil

I am a very vocal member of the rosehip oil fan club, so it took a lot for me to even consider branching out and trying other facial oils. Initially, I thought I’d made a huge mistake; the oil felt very heavy on my skin and I had a couple of breakouts. I was on the verge of sticking this in the “disappointing products” pile when my skin changed its mind! Well, what actually happened was that the weather started to cool down and my skin became drier. Boy howdy, does dry skin love this stuff.   It kept my skin looking supple and moisturised all day long, and helped to boost my skins moisture and appearance when I wore it over night under a night cream. I am still unsure if I love it as much as rosehip oil, but I certainly do like it. I think this may be really beneficial for any dry skinned gals out there looking for a boost to their skincare routine.

 

Would I repurchase? Definitely!

 

So there were some hits and some misses in this range, but all in all I’m a fan of this brand! Have you tried any products from this range? Which would you recommend? Let me know in the comments below.

 

Stay beautiful, N x

Grown Alchemist Skincare Review

I love myself a little luxury. Just the illusion of luxury and I’m a happy chappy. For me Grown Alchemist embodies that feeling. From their simple, too-elegant-to-try-too-hard packaging to the high-quality ingredients I’d always put them up on a pedestal as a brand. We’d had their hand soap and hand cream around the house for years and they are both amaze. So when I finally got around to trying out their skincare range I was a little worried that I was going to be disappointed by my high expectations.

So what did I think?…

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Cleansers

Hydra-Restore Cream Cleanser

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I have dry-combination skin, but this winter the dry side of that equation went to a whole new level. I have no idea why so I’m gonna go ahead and blame global warming, or the economy, or maybe Obama. Whatever the reason, it got dry and my pores became clogged and things on my face were just not going very well! So when I came across a cleanser with the term “hydra-restore” in the name I was obviously going to smother it all over my face and cross my fingers.

It boasts olive leaf extract, B vitamins, yarrow extracts, trace elements of zinc, and polysaccarides and fucoidans from Red Seaweed. The combination of which is deemed to help slow signs of aging, reduce fine lines, hydrate, visibly even skin tone, and reduce pore size! What’s not to love! But does it work?

I was not disappointed. This puppy cleanses, even removing most makeup, but also kept my skin felling supple and hydrated. I also used it in combination with bi-carb soda every 2-3 days as an exfoliator, and it worked really well! However, I saw no change in my signs of aging and, if anything, I think my pores may have become more noticeable. My one issue with cream cleansers is that they sometimes leave my skin feeling weighed down. On particularly dry days this feels nourishing, but on the average day it feels as though my pores are a little clogged, and this came across in the their appearance on my face. It is also AU$36 for 100mL of products, so it’s not cheap.

Did I like it? Yes, I really did. Did I love it? Hmm, I’m going to have to say no, but that I would keep it around for my periods of extreme dryness because it really did help remedy that issue. So if you’re a dry skinned gal or guy, this is probably for you!

 

Gentle Gel Facial Cleanser

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Gel cleansers have a special place in my heart. For no reason other than the fact that I just love the feel of them on my face. Whilst my rant above may not have shown this, I’ve had mixed experiences with cream cleansers. They have, on the whole, been very hydrating, but their cleansing effectiveness often leaves something to be desired. Gel cleansers seem to take that hydration that I so love and long for, but with the added boost of cleansing strength.

This particular gel cleanser is packed with chamomile, bergamont, willow bark, aloe vera, and polyphenols and mucilages from cold pressed rose petals. These ingredients blend to gently remove impurities from the skin without stripping it of natural oils.

Whilst I really did like with cream cleanser, I LOVED the gel cleanser. It was definitely my favourite of the two. Whilst the cream cleanser took two washes to really get makeup off, the gel did it in one go. My skin felt hydrated but also thoroughly cleansed. First possibly the first time in my life I noticed a difference in the appearance of my pores! YIEW! And in combination with bi-carb soda there was also a dramatic difference in my skin tone.

I really cannot rave about his enough. Even at AU$39.95 for 200mL I will still be keeping this in my life forever and ever and ever…I guess it’s time to start auctioning off my future children so I can fund this latest obsession. Does anybody know Rumpelstiltskin’s number?

 

Moisturiser

Hydra-Repair Day Cream

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This moisturising cream contains camellia, rosehip, aloe vera, jojoba oil and mayblossom to help combat hydration issues, softness, appearance and combat stress. Anything that combines my infatuation with rosehip and the term “hydra-repair” was obviously going to end up in my shopping basket.

I used this product in combination with one of Grown Alchemist’s facial oils (see below) and the result was fantastic. This was the luxury I was expecting from this brand. On it’s own it is still a great moisturising cream, but in conjunction with the facial oil it really takes it to another level. It hydrated my poor, dry skin incredibly without leaving my face feeling weighed down by product. The lightweight cream left my skin feeling soft and moisturised all day, something that other products (particularly those that are lightweight) have struggled to do.

Downsides? It is AU$34.95 for 65mL. It lasted me about 2 ½ months with daily use, which isn’t too bad I guess , but that adds up to about $209 a year. My old fave from Sukin is a lot less than that.

So if you can afford it give it a go! But there are other creams that give a similar effect for a lot less money.

 

Serum

Antioxidant Facial Oil: Rosehip & Camellia Seed

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Rosehip oil is one of my great skincare loves. It has transformed the appearance of my skin. So any product with it as a main ingredient is always one I am keen to try. This facial oil by Grown Alchemist is marketed to help hydrate, reduce fine lines, improve appearance, and soften. It did all these things. I used it both on its own (before night cream) in the evening and in conjunction with the moisturising cream (see above) in the morning, and both ways it gave a great result. The most prominent change was in the visible appearance of my skin; it became visibly lightened, rejuvenated and soft.

Some other facial oils, especially the more heavy alternatives, have had me break out initially (or the whole time in one case) but I didn’t experience that with this product. It is lightweight but also packs a punch of hydration. As far as facial oils go the price of this one is, unlike the other Grown Alchemist products so far, about on average at AU$24.95 for 20mL. I’m going to make a very bold claim and say that I may like this oil just as much as my all-time fave Trilogy rosehip oil antioxidant+…and that was not an easy feat.   Good job Grown Alchemist.

 

All in all I really enjoyed my experience with Grown Alchemist’s skincare range! Have you got any other skincare ranges that you would recommend? Let me know in the comments below.

 

Keep smiling, N x

 

 

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