Skin Saviour: Lush

I went through quite the phase a few years back where I was very keen on Lush products. At the time it was mainly bath products, the gorgeous bath bombs and exfoliants (Buffy Body Butter) but for some reason they slipped from my mind and it is some years since I have really used them.

This winter my skin has taken a complete battering and although I don’t understand it, as it hasn’t been all that cold, my skin is like a parched, dry, flaky dessert floor. After trying without success to slather on all my usual moisturisers, layering serums and facial oils and exfoliating I was on the verge of returning to my beloved Eve Lom, when I went in search of something to moisturise my growing bump and rediscovered Lush. I managed to find a solution to all of my dry skin trouble zones so I thought I’d share them here in case any of you find yourselves in need. Best of all, they’re all safe in pregnancy with the exception of one bath bomb

Bump and Body: King of Skin £5.50
My number one find has been this Body butter. I’ve said before that I’m lazy when it comes to skincare and putting something like Bio Oil on my bump daily simply wasn’t going to happen. This however is super fast and easy. I just glide it over my skin top to toe after washing in the shower, rinse and pat dry, with super soft and silky skin all ready for the day.

Lips: Mint Julips Lip Scrub £5.50
My lips have been so dry and with my love for lipsticks, the one thing I don’t need is flaky dry colour. This sugar scrub is brilliantly effective, fresh and minty and so full of goodness you can literally lick your lips clean afterwards.

Face: Ultrabland Cleanser £6.95
This oil packed cleanser melts in to the skin, taking off make up and dirt, then wiped away with toner, (not the way the company recommends but an excellent tip I got from the staff inshore) leaves my skin super soft and with no hint of dryness. With a lot less nasties than some cleansers and at a much better price, (a little goes a long way,) I’m very happy with this new addition to my regime.

Body: Therapy massage bar £6.50
Perfect for the end of the day if I want some additional moisture, this massage bar smooths my skin and with relaxing lavender, neroli and orange oil, it’s incredibly dream inducing.

I should say that I don’t really believe that any cream or potion will prevent stretch marks – its down to skin type, but if I can keep mine as healthy and supple as possible for a head start then I’ll try! And using something that I enjoy is likely to be 100% more effective as at least I will put it on!

So readers, if you are suffering parched skin or flaky lips, these might just solve your problems. I’d love to know if you’re a lush devotee?

Love,
Rebecca
xo

#JanuaryJoy: Get serious about your skin

I thought about calling this post, ‘get serious about anti-aging‘ but skin care is important at any age however you choose to address it. My particular angle this year is towards investing in the future… at almost 32 I feel it might be time to acknowledge that ubiquitous beauty industry term, ‘anti-aging’. Scary.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t feel I have suddenly aged in the last year. I’m very lucky and still don’t have any greys (yet!) but I do feel my skin has changed. It’s not quite as plump and fresh looking as it once was and I can’t help but feel that a lot of that is down to my own laziness.

I’ve fallen into the trap of using facial wipes each night, rarely moisturising, unless my skin is actually flaking off and the same goes for exfoliating. One improvement I have made, as of Christmas however, is to start using a serum (something I vowed to find last year) and so I thought I’d share some skin care recommendations that I’ll be endeavouring to follow…

  1. If you have to use a facial wipe (and let’s face it, a facial wipe will always trump sleeping with your make up on,) these are my new favourite. I picked them up in Glasgow when I forgot my usual cleanser and was pleasantly surprised. They’re neither greasy nor drying and don’t strip your skin, plus they’re kind to eyes when removing stubborn mascara. I keep mine in my bedside table 😉 Johnsons Skincare Make Up Be Gone refresher wipes £3.29
  2. Last year, to save money I left my beloved Eve Lom behind and worked through some of my old cleansers to use them up. Now I feel like I deserve the deep clean and daily sloughing off of dead cells that Eve Lom gives and its soothing oils, so I’ll be splurging on this queen of cleansers again. Eve Lom Cleanser 100ml £55
  3. This is hands down the best exfoliator I’ve ever used. Super smoothing and brightening, I use it 1-2 times weekly for the best wake up to your skin you could ask for. Boots No.7 Total renewal Microdermabrasion exfoliator £11
  4. My hard and fast rule for moisturisers (and anti-aging) is that they must contain SPF. I find this one is strong enough for winter dryness but non-greasy and smells lovely while protecting my skin. A Perfect World SPF 25 £35
  5. Lastly, the super serum. This one gets a lot of hype, especially after its recent reformulation and release. I got a sample a few months back and fell in love with it. It has a lovely texture and whilst I’m never going to be the sort of person who actually believes it will make my skin younger to erase wrinkles, it definitely improved the texture and quality of my skin so I asked for a full size bottle for Christmas and am crossing my fingers for miracles! Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronised Recovery Complex II £48

So readers – do you have any skin care resolutions or products that you have discovered and want to share. I;d love to hear any recommendations (or confessions if you’re a face wipe user too!)

Love,
Rebecca
xo

#JanuaryJoy – Overhaul your Skincare

January is a time for fresh starts, clean slates and good intentions. I don’t know about you but I’m always in need of a kick up the behind when it comes to skin care and I can’t think of a better time than now, when I’m feeling motivated and thinking about all the events I have coming up this year that I want my skin to be glowing for.

In a moment I’m going to share my skin care resolutions and I’d love to hear yours. As with so many of the #JanuaryJoy prompts, just writing something down makes me feel much more committed to the idea and it’s fab sharing tips and thoughts with you all.


Image of and credited to Keiko Lynn

First though, I want to update you all on something I have been doing for my skin for a while now. Back in June I wrote 2 posts on Adult Acne… One busting the myths and encouraging you all to seek treatment if you need it, instead of putting up with less than perfect skin and a second detailing the acne treatments you might be offered. At the time, my skin had been particularly troublesome. Barely a day went by that I didn’t get a new red lump under my skin and whilst they were easily coverable with make-up, who wants to have to do that everyday? The spots were also leaving areas of increased pigmentation behind and after looking back at some honeymoon photos of ours, (when I had been on treatment for spots) I realised how good my skin had been and how I had really just got used to the spots, kidding myself when I had a good few days that it wasn’t that bad. Don’t get me wrong, I was by no means acne-ridden, but I certainly fell into one of the categories of women who I was trying to target in those posts – Living with acne and not feeling like I really warranted medical treatment for it.

Fast forward 6 months and after 5-6 months of treatment, my skin is massively improved. I barely get a spot now and if I do they are much less significant. My skin tone is also so much better. All the pigmentation I was worried about has almost completely faded and apart from my desert island beauty item of blusher to brighten up my monotone skin, I’m happy to go completely barefaced any time, any where. (Here I am, doing just that.)

I’m so glad I went back to my GP (GP’s have their own GP too!) and got it sorted out. As with all my other skin care tips I wanted to remind you, if one of your resolutions this year is to sort your skin out, before forking out on expensive cosmetics and skincare, go back and read those posts and think about whether you actually need professional help. (It was interesting to note, even after writing those posts, that when I tweeted about how much my skin had improved yesterday, everyone was hoping I would reveal a miracle cosmetic product.)

Ok, so skin sorted, what am I focusing on this year when it comes to my skin?

  1. My devotion to Eve Lom is unwavering but my laziness seriously gets in the way of maintaining her regime. I’m going to try my very best not to fall into bed without taking my make up off and at the very least, keep some make-up remover wipes in my bedside to use if tiredness gets the better of me.
  2. Now I’ve turned thirty, I feel like it’s time to start thinking more seriously about anti-aging products. I’m not entirely convinced any anti-aging product actually works but I am going to endeavour to apply my eye cream at night and to moisturise my neck too.
  3. On the same note, I’m going to start the search for a super-serum to improve my skin and at the very least hydrate it better.

So let’s hear your thoughts now. What are your skin care resolutions? Did you visit your GP after reading my Adult Acne posts and have you seen a difference? Or has this post made you realise now is the time?

Here’s to your best skin ever in 2013!

Love,
Rebecca
xo

PS. Here are those Acne posts if you want to re-read.

Recommended: The Sanctuary Therapists Secret Facial Oil

Last week I was flicking through the online pages of Stylist.co.uk and read about a new facial cleansing oil by The Sanctuary, hotly tipped to be one of THE beauty products to watch for in 2012. The morning it was announced on Stylist, the Sanctuary had so many calls relating to its launch that the set up a waiting list and then proceeded to bring the launch forwards. I was intrigued and as I’m reaching the end of my favourite Eve Lom cleanser, in a fit of spontaneity I purchased the Nourishing Oil Duo to test for Florence Finds.

Now, it should be said that cleansing oils are not new to the market – most notably Shu Uemura’s cult facial cleansing oils. Several other companies have branched out into similar products as a result. I know there may be many of you out there thinking that they can’t imagine anything worse than using an oil to cleanse with, but I have been a convert ever since starting to use Eve Lom over 3 years ago. My skin tends towards breakouts but is really quite dry and it took me a long time to realise that by not feeding my skin properly, I was stressing it out more and making the breakouts worse. Don’t get me wrong here, acne needs to be correctly treated by your doctor as it is caused by bacteria and hormonal imbalances, but the correct skin care for your skin type can help contribute to happier skin all round. Eve Lom is also a blend of oils which melt into the skin and as a result, I wasn’t averse to trying this out as an alternative.

Now, I don’t need a moisturiser, but I thought I’d buy the combination as recently I’ve been feeling that my skin isn’t truly hydrated. Winter has taken its toll, plus the ravages of ski-ing and it’s just that time of year when I start to think about what I can do to perk things up a bit. As facial oils are often recommended, I thought I would give that a go too, why not?

First up, Sanctuary ultimate facial cleansing oil. The instructions suggest you use 2-3 pumps of oil (what looks like a small amount on your hand, but actually goes a long way once on your face,) and massage it in to the face thoroughly. You then add a few drops of water and repeat, emulsifying the oil and rinse off with warm water. Believe it or not, you are left with very soft clean skin and none of the taught feeling or dryness you may suffer from with most cleansing or foaming washes. You can also cleanse twice for an extra deep clean.

I have to say, I really missed the exfoliating action of the muslin cloth I normally use so added it in to help remove the oil. my only other complaint was that it didn’t remove my eye make up like Eve Lom does, BUT that’s because I’m lazy and don’t like using a separate remover. It does smell lovely though – quite herbal and relaxing.

Next, I tried the Therapists facial cleansing oil as a moisturiser afterwards. Again, 1-2 drops of oil are recommended to sweep across the skin after cleansing. I really liked it – there was no oily residue on the skin afterwards and my skin looked quite hydrated, smooth and fresh. I had a good close up look at any fine lines I’ve seen as a result of dryness and think they are better after using the oil. I also find that after using it at night, the next morning my skin is no more oily – adequately hydrating the skin seems to prevent it then overcompensating for dryness by producing extra oil and I don’t clease at all in the morning – a hang over from using Eve Lom but I didn’t feel any need to even freshen my skin with water the morning after.

The Florence Finds verdict? If you fancy trying a cleansing oil, the Sanctuary one is reasonably priced and does its job quite well, especially for drier skins or those needing a post-winter moisture boost. However, my find of the week definitely goes to the Therapists oil – a new favourite product of mine and one I’d definitely recommend for normal and dry skins, for soothing and softening moisture. I love it!

I’d love to hear if any of you have used a cleansing oil or facial oil or have tried or heard of this particular one – please share your comments in the box below!

Love,
Rebecca
xo

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