Thursday, September 24, 2015

Innisfree It’s Real Squeeze Acai Berry Mask

A few nights ago, I was really in the mood for a face mask, after spending a lovely day at home unwinding in front of the TV and blogging. It was a perfect day! So off I went and picked a sheet mask from my Innisfree stash. The It’s Real Squeeze Acai Berry Mask turned out to be the perfect choice.

This sheet mask claims to moisturize your skin while making it brighter and clearer. On the website, it also states it will smooth out your skin. I was expecting this to be a typically Innisfree mask, so softer skin and a great boost of hydration were the things I was looking forward to. Simply getting that from the mask would have been enough because it normally really delivers, but I was amazed by the results.

Obviously I got the expected results, but my skin was also significantly brighter looking and dare I say a little bit fairer.  I exfoliate regularly so dullness is not really a concern for me. I usually don’t see immediate results from brightening masks and mostly use them to help lighten any hyperpigmentation leftover by spots. Well the radiance I got from this acai berry mask was hard to miss. My face was glowing! My skin was also smoother and it felt super soft. This will be a definite repurchase and I would love to use it before a special occasion. Also I loved the light fruity scent it has, very pleasant and not at all overpowering so wearing it is enjoyable. 

The Innisfree It’s Real Squeeze Acai Berry Mask is available on their website for less than 2$. An incredible deal if you ask me!

My Favorite Facial Water Sprays: Caudalie Organic Grape Water and Organic Rosewater

You know the feeling, it’s been a long day, you’ve been working hard for hours and focusing no longer seems possible. On top of that your skin might be feeling slightly dehydrated, so let’s just say you are in dire need of a pick me up. In that situation, my favorite product to use is a facial water spray and today I am talking about my two favorites: the Caudalie Organic Grape Water and Organic Rosewater.

The Caudalie Organic Grape Water is as simple as it sounds, just pure 100% organic grape water and grape juice. Unlike spraying regular water on your face this actually increases the moisture levels and it does not make you skin feel drier once it sinks in/evaporates. This happens a lot with plain water. I also love how refreshing it feels, being in a can the water is cooler and it really wakes you up when you spray it. This is quite a simple product bus as usual Caudalie brings its signature grape twist and turns a simple mist into a great product and experience. 

My other favorite is organic Rosewater. I use the one from Divine Essence (here), which is readily available in Canada, but I know many brands do their own. This is also a very refreshing product, though not as cooling as the Caudalie, and it smells incredible. I would not say it is particularly moisturizing but rosewater is very soothing to the skin. I find it helps calm my skin when it is irritated and it does relieve any tightness you might feel midday. I always have a bottle on hand and use it multiple times a day. The fact that it smells like roses also has a nice aroma therapeutic effect and really relaxes me. Honestly I think everyone should have a little rosewater spray because it is just lovely to use.

The Caudalie Organic Grape Water can be found in their stores, on their website, Sephora and Feelunique. It also comes in a great travel size version perfect to carry around, find it here and here. The organic Rosewater can be found in many health stores just have a look around in your local area and online. 

Kérastase Laque Noir

No matter how much time you spend on styling your hair, you went the result of your efforts to last through the day. This makes hairspray the most useful hair product to have in your arsenal. However, they are not all made equal and no one wants to end up with sticky, crispy hair after spraying some on. That would just ruin the whole thing. Well I have finally found the most long lasting and efficient hairspray ever: the Kérastase Laque Noir.

This is a strong hold hairspray that fights humidity and keeps your style in place while giving your hair shine. I have naturally wavy hair that tends to frizz and curl when it’s humid and keeping a sleek ponytail in place all day is almost impossible. Kérastase says this creates an anti-humidity shield and I cannot find a better way to describe it. It is the only hairspray that can keep my ponytail from getting flyaways and frizzy all day long. I know it is kind of expensive, but if you live in a very humid climate or have hair similar to mine, I think it is worth investing in. What I love about Kérastase in this case, is that they offer a  convenient travel size of this (which is the one I have), so you can try it for less but the size is generous enough to last you a while.

When I wear my hair down, it also holds waves and curls nicely and gives them shine without any crispiness. The mist is very fine and I love that you only need to use a little for it to work. It also has an amazing fruity scent so your hair will smell nice and you don’t have to deal with the typical hairspray fumes. Lastly, I know this is not really important, but how chic does that can look! I really love the design and I think that when you are spending a pretty penny on a product, you want it to deliver and look nice too. In both cases the Kérastase Laque Noir Delivers.

You can find the Kérastase Laque Noir in Kérastase salons, on their website and on Feelunique

Monday, September 21, 2015

My Essential Makeup Tools: MAC 217 Blending Brush and Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler

Beauty tools are not my favorite things to buy, I just don’t find them as exciting as a new lip gloss. I also honestly believe you can find great affordable options from the drugstore like the Real Techniques Expert Face Brush. Nonetheless, some things are worth investing in, so today I have rounded up my favorites tools that are worth the higher price tag: the MAC 217 Blending Brush and the Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler. 

The Mac 217 Blending Brush is a cult favorite and worth every penny. I tried several blending brushes before finally caving and purchasing this baby. Well I should have just gotten it the first time, it would have saved me a lot of frustration over poor quality brushes that don’t know what “blending” is. This brush helps define you crease like nothing else, blends away harsh lines without making your shadows disappear and you can also use it to apply a simple wash of color all over. You really can do everything with the 217 and it is one of the rare eyeshadow brushes that is hard to dupe with something of lesser quality. As for how it holds up, it is easy to clean (I use the Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap) and it does not shed. I believe it will last a very long time and for the quality, it is a well worth investing in. 

Next is the Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler, the Cadillac of eyelash curling and the most raved about curler. I honestly waited for years before buying this because I didn’t think it could be that amazing. It is just an eyelash curler after all. How wrong was I… Unlike cheaper offerings, the Shu Uemura one does pinch your lash or bend them at an odd angle, leaving a kink in them. It always gives me an eye opening curl that lasts all day, that longevity was a surprise to me because other curlers did not give me the same results. I also found I don’t need to press as hard to get a good curl which is better for your lashes and it does not pull them out either. I really think this is worth investing in, especially considering it comes with a backup silicone pad which doubles the lifetime of the curler. Also if you are interested in more Shu Uemura products, the eyelash curler is sometimes included as part of sets like this one, so you can try multiple products.

The MAC 217 Blending Brush is available from any MAC counter as well as on their website. As for the Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler you can get it from the Shu Uemura website, any of their counters and at Sephora.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

The New Health Rules by Doctor Frank Lipman

Last week, I mentioned a few books I was reading and today I wanted to share a more in depth review of one of my favorites. The New Health Rules by Doctor Frank Lipman has become a favorite of mine and I was blown away by how great such a small book could be.

This book is divided into sections that each give rules, which are more like tips and advice, on how to improve your health using food as well as other small lifestyle changes. Now you might already know some of them, but I found the whole thing quite informative and super interesting. It’s written in a way that is not pushy, but it still manages to get the point across and gives you the motivation to make the effort to be healthier.

Each tip is quite short and direct, so this is a quick and easy read. I love how each page has a different tip so you can easily pick one at random daily and try to apply the advice. That way you can start to develop good habits and start living a better lifestyle. Also there are loads of pictures accompanying each piece of advice making them livelier. The photography is truly inspiring and stunning, it is the perfect coffee table book. I think The New Health Rules would also make a great present for anyone, after all don’t we all want to be healthier and have more energy?

You can buy Doctor Frank Lipman’s The New Health Rules in bookstores, on Amazon and iBooks.

Disclamer: I am not a health specialist/doctor and before making any changes in your diet/lifestyle you should speak with your physician. I wrote this review purely because I found the book inspirational and it does make interesting points you can discuss with your physician to see if they would work for you. 

Friday, September 18, 2015

My Top 10 Tips to Doing Laundry

It’s that time of the year again, school is starting and you might be moving out for the first time. Starting university often means the start of your independence and living on your own for the first time can sometimes be a bit overwhelming if you are not used to doing everything by yourself. I know that some have never had to do their own laundry until they moved out and so I wanted to share my tips with you so you can make the most of your money (doing laundry on campus can be expensive) and have perfectly clean and fresh clothes.

This is a list of practical tips I have learned over the years and hopefully they will save you some headaches and help you avoid catastrophes. That being said the most important thing to know is that it’s not that hard or complicated. Just take your time and it will be alright.

1. First of all, you need a laundry basket. If you are living on campus, chances you will have to carry your laundry around so buy something that’s easy to carry. Plastic baskets can take up a lot of space and are not easy to carry around, so go for a laundry bag with good handles. Make sure it looks sturdy, you don’t want something flimsy that will break the second time you use it.

2. Always wash clothes with cold water. Not only does this save energy, it also prevents colors from fading over time and can help reduce the risk of new clothes staining the rest of your laundry. Also depending on the washers and your school, using cold water can be less expensive than warm water.

3. When possible I recommend wash new clothes (especially if they are dark or bright) separately. If you don’t own a washer this can be expensive, so instead you can hand wash them in a sink and either throw them in the dryer with the rest of your clothes or hang them to dry. It requires more effort but this has helped me save several clothes from staining. New jeans (especially dark washes) are very prone to loose color when you first wash them so be careful.

4. When washing towels and bedding, you do want to use warm water to help kill any bacteria or allergens that can develop easily in fabrics that stay humid (like hand towels). Also, try to do this every week, you don’t want dirty, smelly towels and a clean bed always feels wonderful.

5. Use a gentle laundry detergent, those with lots of fragrance or dyes can cause skin irritations so you might want to switch to something that’s biodegradable and fragrance-free. Don’t worry you clothes will still smell fresh and clean afterwards.

6. Read the labels, some fabrics do not do well with heat and should not be put in the dryer. I personally find that rayonne t-shirts tend to lose their shape and go wonky when they are put in the dryer. If possible try not to use the highest heat setting, your clothes will stay in better shape over time and it might save you a little money too. 

7. Knits look better when you leave them to dry flat, it keeps the wool from going all fluffy and protects the texture.

8. Take the time to read the settings on the washer and dryer. Do you have a lot of clothes? If not than you can chose to fill the washer with less water and help the environment at the same time. What kind of clothes are you washing? Are they delicate, do they have any embellishments? If yes chose a more delicate setting, which means the washer will move and spin less minimising the stress on your clothes.

9. Things like bras and clothes with delicate embellishments are often best to hand wash. It takes more effort, but at least you are sure they will not be damaged.

10. Don’t forget dryer sheets, they will prevent your clothes from being full of static. In the winter and especially with knits, you might want to add a liquid fabric softener for a stronger effect. Simply add it to the washer (where to put it should be indicated inside the machine), while it is filling with water before it starts the rinsing process.

I hope these tips were helpful to you. I am sure most you know how to do your own laundry, but I thought it was important to lend a helping hand to those trying it out for the first time. If you have any questions, tips or tricks to add, simply leave them in the comments below. 

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Dior Diorshow Iconic Overcurl

Who does not love a good mascara? I personally think the drugstore has loads of great offerings, but like everyone else I feel the appeal of high-end mascaras with their beautiful packaging and compelling ads. That being said I always feel a bit guilty spending a lot on mascara, see my eyes are very sensitive so I can rarely finish a tube and obviously no one likes to throw away something you spent good money on. This is why I love buying minis from Sephora or getting samples from my favorite counters. As you might know, Dior is my favorite luxury brand so I was beyond excited when I received a mini Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara as part of a gift with purchase.

The original Diorshow Iconic is a favorite mascara of mine and I love curved mascara brush, making the Overcurl version a must try on my list. The combination of the brush and formula is supposed to give great volume and really curl your lashes. The formula is on the drier side which I love, it makes applying it to finer lashes super easy and the black color is nicely pigmented. The curved brush really follows the contour of your eyes, so it really helps define them by separating every lash and the application is easy.

Now for the results, I got lots of volume with this and because the formula is drier the volume looks like your lashes are naturally bigger instead of giving you a wet clumpy look. As for the curling power, it does initially lift your lashes but the effect did not last for long on me. By the end of the day the curl had dropped, but the volume was still present and helped keep my eyes defined. I think my lashes might be too fine for the formula, but if you have thicker lashes or can handle slightly heavier mascaras I think you might like this. The volume you get is impressive enough so I would give it a try if the opportunity comes up or if you can get a mini tube.

The Dior Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara is available from any Dior counter, the Dior website,  Sephora and Feelunique

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Currently Reading: My Favorite Beauty and Lifestyle Books

I have been catching up on my reading recently and I thought I could share with you what I have on my nightstand. I don’t read as many novels as I used to, they get me too wrapped up and I end up going to sleep way too late. This is why I prefer lifestyle and beauty books to unwind, plus I love learning new things. The following books are the ones I am currently enjoying and they all have a similar short sections format that is great to read before bed.

First up is The New Health Rules: Simple Changes to Achieve Whole-Body Wellness by Doctor Frank Lipman (here). I first saw pictures of this on Goop and I loved the styling. Basically, each page contains a “rule” to follow in order to be healthier, they really are more like tips and not preachy. Some advice you might know, but I am sure you will learn something new. I really love it and all the pictures are stunning.

Next is The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo (here). This has been generating a lot of buzz online and since I was in a decluttering mood, I thought it would be very useful. The book is based on the simple principle that you should only keep things that spark joy instead of cluttering your home with too many things. I cannot wait to finish it and put the techniques to the test.

Another book I am currently enjoying is The French Beauty Solution: Time-Tested Secrets to Look and Feel Beautiful Inside and Out by Mathilde Thomas (here) the founder of Caudalie. This beauty book is based on French health and lifestyle tips that will improve your skin. I already apply most of them in my lifestyle, but it is written in such a fresh and pleasant way that I am really enjoying reading it. I also cannot wait to get to the diy beauty section. 

Last is The Honest Life: Living Naturally and True to You by Jessica Alba (here), a great guide book to living in a cleaner and more natural home. I have been loving my products from The Honest Company and this book is a great companion to the brand. It is has many sections from food, beauty, fashion and home. The pictures are very colorful and I think it offers great advice that you can easily apply to your life.

There you have it, my favorite books of the moment. They are all available in bookstore as well as on Amazon and in iBooks. 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Caudalie Divine Legs

Fall might be upon us but that does not mean you have to say goodbye to your summer glow just yet. After all, there are still many days of lovely warm weather ahead. If you are looking for a way to boost your natural skin color or tan, than look no further than the Caudalie Divine Legs. 

This is an amazing tinted lotion that will give your legs (and the rest of your body) a beautiful sun-kissed look. Unlike self-tanners this is super easy to remove, it will be gone after a shower so you don’t have to worry about having dark spots or streaks on your skin for days. The lotion applies nicely and dries almost instantly so it should not stain your clothes and you don’t have to wait hours for the color to develop. It is super quick and convenient when a special occasion comes up or if you feel like you could use a boost of color. As the name suggests, the Divine Legs is scented with the Divine fragrance, a lovely warm scent that envelops you.

What makes me love the Divine Legs so much is the color, it is the most perfect shade! It looks super natural, just like a real tan would: never orange or muddy. I have very fair skin so finding a product that works for me and is not too dark is key for a believable look. As you can see in the bottle, the lotion is quite shimmery but don’t worry you will not look like you are covered in gold glitter. In fact, the shimmer is not visible on the skin, it simply gives a beautiful healthy glow to the skin. Honestly, the swatch does not do this justice, but believe me it makes your skin look amazing, like you have just been on a holiday. 

Now, there is one thing I am not too sure about and that is the lasting power. I noticed that if any water go on my skin while wearing the lotion, it would just disappear and leave that spot color-free. Obviously this is an issue if you want to go to the beach or if it is supposed to rain. However from reading reviews, no one else seemed to have this issue, so I am not sure it is a common problem. Maybe I just got a bad/old bottle, my local Sephora does not have the best product turnover. Nonetheless, I still think this is an amazing product and the color alone will make me get a new bottle next summer.

You can get the Caudalie Divine Legs is available from the Caudalie website, Sephora, Feelunique and any other retailer of the brand. Also I you should have a look at the cute commercial they shot (English version here and French version here), I loved it so much it is the reason I decided to try it in the first place. 

The Honest Company Essentials Bundle Trial

In honor of me receiving my first bundle from the Honest Company (more on it to come), I thought I would share with you my impressions of their great Essentials Bundle free trial. I have been looking for more eco-friendly and natural product to use in my home and on my body for a while and I honestly had not found anything great until now. The Honest Company offers a wide range of both home and personal care products that are free of harsh chemicals, but still perform amazingly well! I also love how their website offers a clear list of ingredients and a great description of the product. They have nothing to hide and are proud of it!

The Honest Company is a family brand so they also offer baby related thing like diapers and other products. They offer free trials (you only pay for shipping) on different bundles so you can pick what is best suited for your needs: personal care, diapers or wellness (supplements and vitamins). It is important to know that if you sign up for the trial, you will be automatically entered into their bundle program and will be charge for the bundle of your choice seven days after receiving your trial. You can read more about all the details of the free trial here, everything is clearly explained, but it is important to know all the terms. Now let’s get into the products shall we. 

First you will be getting a mini Organic Healing Balm (here), an ointment you can use to moisturise and soothe skin. It is great at calming irritated skin and super moisturising on dry patches. This mini tube will last you forever, you only need a tiny amount each time, but I will keep this one for travel and get the larger one (it is that good).

The second thing you get in the Essentials Bundle is the Lavender Hand Soap (here), a lovely gel soap that cleans your hands without drying them. The lavender scent is very pleasant, but I like how it does not stick, making it great when you are cooking. It also foams and rinses nicely, leaving no residues behind. I will purchase the full size once I am done with my current hand soaps. 

Next is the Face + Body Lotion (here), a light and almost gel-like lotion that is super emollient and melts into your skin instantly. Every use leaves my skin nourished and soft without feeling sticky. I truly enjoy using this because it is easy to apply and you will not feel it sitting on your skin for ages like most lotions. This is an amazing body lotion and I love how it contains many organic ingredients.

Up next is the Multi-Surface Cleaner (here), a plant-based cleaner you can use to remove dirt and greasy from every nook and cranny. This was the thing I was most excited about since I have been trying to find a great non-toxic kitchen cleaner for a while. It is so amazing that I already purchased a full size! It really removes any stains or greasy residues from your counter tops and appliances without leaving them sticky. You don’t need to rub really hard to remove dirt because it is a high performing product. It also leaves no weird or overpowering fumes so it feels great to use in a place where you cook food. I don’t ever want to be without it!

Lastly is the Shampoo + Body Wash (here), a gentle and SLS-free cleanser. I have not used it in my hair, but I love it as a body wash, it gets you clean without drying out the skin. It also lathers really nicely for being free of sulfate. The natural orange vanilla scent is pleasant and once again it does not linger so you don’t have to worry about it clashing with any other products you use. I can definitely see myself purchasing the regular size in the future.

I love being able to tryout products before committing so the free trial is great. I was really impressed with everything I tried and I already got my first real bundle. To get your free trial, head on over to the Honest website and have a look at the different offers. If you prefer, you can also buy the products individually on the website.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Soap and Glory Scrubatomic Daily Face Polish

Good exfoliation is a crucial part of my skincare regime and a step I go through multiple times throughout the week. For me, exfoliating only once a week is not enough (my skin craves more), however this means I need to be careful when choosing an exfoliant because I don’t want to use something too harsh. This is why the Soap and Glory Scrubatomic Daily Face Polish is so great.

This is a scrub with natural AHA fruit smoothers (bilberry, sugarcane, orange) and microbeads made of clay and silica (full ingredients list here). So you get both a manual and chemical exfoliation in a creamy base that is super gentle for every day. I use it maybe 3 times a week, sometimes more if need be, and it never irritates my face or makes it red so you can use it in the morning. I think it is a great product to use as an introduction of AHA and chemical exfoliation because it is so gentle. As always though, you should do a patch test before use just to make sure you skin is fine with it.  

After use, I am always left with brighter and smoother looking skin. The beads are never scratchy and I find it very easy to rinse off, no stubborn beads will stay stuck to you face and the creamy base does not leave sticky residues. The tube lasts for a long time because you only need to use a little at a time since it contains lots of beads. It also smells deliciously fruity, making the experience even more pleasant.

The Soap and Glory Scrubatomic Daily Face Polish is a great and affordable exfoliator, you can read more about it on their website and it is available in drugstores that carry the brand like Boots

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Innisfree It’s Real Squeeze Rose Mask

Today I bring you a review on what turned out to be the most luxurious smelling sheet mask I have ever used. Coincidentally, it also had unexpected results that blew me away. So let’s talk about the Innisfree It’s Real Squeeze Rose Mask, one of those amazing sheet masks everyone should run out and get.

Innisfree really has out done itself with this one, the sheet is as soft as ever and it was drenched in essence, but it is the scent that really got to me. This smells exactly like roses, not like perfume or fake flowers, but like pure and high-quality rosewater. It is divine! This mask is also a perfect example of how good use of fragrance can completely elevate a product and the experience of using it. I think it is worth buying for the scent alone to be honest, but luckily it delivers pretty amazing results too.

The main focus of this is actually to moisturize your skin, which it does brilliantly without being heavy at all. I also noticed increased radiance in my skin, it did not lighten marks or my skin tone, but there was a noticeable glow that lasted for several hours. That kind of results is what I want when using a sheet mask, but I was not expecting it to have a firming/tightening effect. Once I removed it, my face looked noticeably firmer and the contours of it were also sharper looking. I am still young so sagging and lack of definition are not things I usually noticed, but afterwards my cheekbones really looked more defined. That is quite incredible for a mask that costs less than two dollars.

I really believe anyone would enjoy the Innisfree It’s Real Squeeze Rose Mask because it addresses so many skin concerns all at once. You can find it on the Innisfree website here.   

Monday, September 7, 2015

Innisfree Eco Safety Aqua Daily Sun Gel SPF30 PA++

Well the sweltering heat and humidity just keep on coming… In those condition, having a great sunscreen is crucial because nobody enjoys putting on a thick layer of greasy cream on their face when it is boiling outside. Luckily I am covered with my favorite sunscreen the Innisfree Eco Safety Aqua Daily Sun Gel SPF30 PA++.

If I could only use one sunscreen for the rest of my life it would be this one and I cannot recommend it enough. It is a light water-based lotion, it is not a gel but it is a far cry from thick creams, it absorbs like a dream! It contains great ingredients like sunflower seed oil, green tea extract and hyaluronic acid. All these leave you with soft and moisturized skin and I found that the hyaluronic acid really helps it absorb faster, but it also helps the rest of your skincare do the same. It’s just absolutely brilliant!

The sun gel also works really well under makeup, leaving no white cast and it does not make your face oilier throughout the day, so your makeup will stay in place. After months of usage I can report I never got sunburned while wearing it and I love how all the antioxidants it contains will certainly help protect my skin from harmful sunrays and keep it looking young. The bottle design is also worth mentioning, it is small and compact so you can easily take it with you on your travels and it has a very small and narrow nozzle that allows you to control the exact amount of product you need preventing any waste. Honestly, this is just such a rave worthy product for me, as most sunscreens break me out, but this one has done nothing but good things for my skin.

You can get the Innisfree Eco Safety Aqua Daily Sun Gel from their website, though it appears like the SPF30 version has been discontinued they offer an SPF50+ PA+++ version in the same formula and this is the one I will be purchasing in the future. 

Feed Your Face by Doctor Jessica Wu

I love reading and I love skincare, so what better than a book on skincare to unwind at night. That being said not all books on the topic are great, some are too preachy and others don’t really offer any new or useful information. Well, Feed Your Face: Younger, Smoother Skin and a Beautiful Body in 28 Delicious Days by Doctor Jessica Wu is nothing if not informative and fun.

I found this to be really enjoyable to read, the author is never preachy, and I feel like I actually learnt something instead of re-reading the same information for the thousandth time. Jessica Wu is a dermatologist so she obviously knows what she is talking about. Each chapter goes into different skin issues, from eczema to acne and wrinkles, explaining their causes, but also giving you advice on how to deal with them.

What makes this book different from others however is that it focuses on food, showing the link between what we eat and our skin. Thus for each section she talks about different things you can include in your diet to help you improve and hopefully solve your skin issues. The book also includes a meal plan (great for inspiration) and a list of healthier options in popular restaurant if you have to eat fast food. Lastly you will find product recommendations throughout the book and an informative section on in office treatments and procedures doctors can perform to help your skin (if this is something you are into/considering).

I loved how Feed Your Face motivates you to have a healthier lifestyle while making it about something we care about (our face) instead of focusing on all the things you have to cut out or being very strict and restrictive. I think most people can learn from this and as they say “knowledge is power”, so you will basically have all the necessary tools to get better skin and improve your health at the same time. The multitude of sections make it an easy ready and I liked that it is written in a simple way, it does not get lost in too many details or scientific terms, but it is not something written for kids either. Overall this is a must-have book and something useful you can always turn to when in need.

Doctor Jessica Wu’s book Feed Your Face is available in most bookstores and you can find it on Amazon and iBooks. For more information on Jessica Wu and her book, you can visit her website here

Shu Uemura Anti/Oxi Cleansing Oil

I am slowly getting back in the swing of things with the blog and regular posting should (hopefully) go on. My whole reorganisation process also led me to discover I have quite a few products I meant to review ages ago that I still had not gotten around to. It’s shame really, because most are long-time favorites that I kept delaying since putting my excitement into words was difficult. So today I finally bring you a review on my beloved Shu Uemura Anti/Oxi Cleansing Oil, also known as the only cleanser I will ever use. 

I kid you not, this is the most amazing makeup remover I have ever tried and I am currently on my fifth bottle in a row. That kind of commitment to the same cleanser shows how much I love it. This is hands down the best cleansing oil I have ever tried, it has a light non/greasy consistency and it emulsifies and rinses clean super easily. It will leave you with clean, balanced skin that feels soft and moisturize, but there is no oily residue left behind. It also does not irritate my eyes and removes any mascara like a charm. 

I have tried other cleansing oils from various brands and other Shu Uemura offerings, but none compare to this one. More than being a simple makeup remover, it has an undeniable effect on my skin, leaving it brighter and smoother. I think this is due to the great plant extracts it contains like moringa, green tea and gingko leaf. These are all great antioxidant and the moringa extract is particularly good at refining and purifying the skin.

Shu Uemura qualifies this cleanser as an anti-ageing one because the extracts it contains help fight the oxidant effect of pollution, helping it fight against aging stress of the skin. I was honestly shocked to see actual skincare benefits from this, because cleansers never usually leave visible results on my skin. This is a truly outstanding product that lives up to its claims.  

The Shu Uemura Anti/Oxi Cleansing Oil is a star product in my skincare routine and one of those rare products I cannot see myself without. You can find it at any Shu Uemura counters and on their website as well as in Sephora. It comes in both a regular size and a large one so you have good options for both travel and at home. 

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Narciso Rodriguez For Her

Even though the gorgeous sunny weather is still very much present, for me September marks the slow beginning of fall (despite the fact that it’s supposed to be over 40ºC today). My favorite season is also time for me to break out my favorite fragrances, one of them being the incredible Narciso Rodriguez For Her.

This has been a favorite daytime fragrance of mine for years, some find it too musky and prefer to keep it for the evening, but I think it’s perfect. The three main notes include honey flower, solar musk and tactile wood, creating a uniquely elegant, sophisticated and feminine blend. While musk really is the heart of this fragrance the honey and other floral notes soften it and also prevent it from being too heavy or masculine.

On me, I find the scent very delicate and feminine, which is why I love wearing it during the day, but there is something truly unique about this fragrance. Yes it is floral but it is not generic or overpowering and it is certainly not too girly. This is also one of the rare fragrances I have repurchased and I would never want to be without it. The notes are warm, but this is not a winter only fragrance, I wear it all year-round. Though it is a favorite in the fall because I love how it lightly clings to my scarf.

The Narciso Rodriguez For Her fragrance is available in a variety of size, including a rollerball which is great for travel or if you simply want to try it out. It is available from Sephora, Feelunique and department/drugstores that carry the brand.  You can have a look at the Narciso Rodriguez website for a full list of retailers by country.


Saturday, September 5, 2015

Caudalie 2015 Favorites Set: First Look and Review

Well I’m back today after taking a break from blogging to celebrate my birthday this week and also because work was a little crazy. To make up for it, I have a new Caudalie review for you all. I was fortunate to receive the Caudalie 2015 Favorites Set as part of a gift with purchase offer they had running on their website. Let’s have a look at this cute bag full of great deluxe size minis shall we.

The first product you get is the Lip Conditioner (here), a balm with grape oil and shea butter that protects your lips while giving them a shot of antioxidants. It’s a nice lip balm that does protect your lip and helps locks moisture in, but it did not add more moisture to my lips. This is normal for me when talking about a waxier balm. I enjoy using it, but I was not blown away either so I would say it is average but nice nonetheless. Edit: After using it for a few more days, I found out it becomes much more emollient once you wear off the waxier top layer and it is actually a very good lip balm that is quite affordable.

Next we have the Hand and Nail Cream (here), an antioxidant and anti-ageing moisturizing cream that contains grape seed oil and polyphenols along with shea butter. I really like this, it is super moisturizing and softening and it has a lovely orange scent that I surprisingly enjoyed (I’m not a fan of orange usually). Also our hands are one of the first parts of the body to show signs of age due to everything we put them through, from excessive washing to not protecting them from the sun. Having a hand cream full of antioxidant is a great way to repair the skin and hopefully help keep those signs at bay.

The third product is the Vinosource Moisturizing Sorbet (here), a light gel moisturizer with star ingredients like grape water, grape seed polyphenols and Vinolevure. This moisturizer is balancing, provides light hydration and would be great for people with normal to oily skin, drier skin types might fare better with the Vinosource Cream. To me this is a great basic moisturizer that really focuses on hydration and works well in the daytime over a serum. I really think anyone would enjoy this and it’s a great product to have in the set. 

Next is the famous Beauty Elixir (here) a facial mist full of essential oils inspired by Queen Isabelle of Hungary.  It can be used as both a toner and a setting spray, though I prefer to use it on bare skin to really benefit from its ingredients. Obviously, I have not had this long enough to see any skin improvement, but I love therapeutic properties it has. It smells amazing, like mint, orange and rosemary making it a blend that is both invigorating and super relaxing. I really enjoy spraying it on before going to bed. The scent is very strong (and hard to describe) so it might not appeal to everyone, but I think it’s incredible.

Lastly is the Gentle Cleansing Milk (here), a gentle and soothing cleanser with sweet almond oil, grape seed oil and oat. I have been testing it out over the week and while it will not remove heavy duty makeup, it is perfect for minimal makeup days when you just want to remove concealer and a tinted moisturizer/light foundation. The lotion texture is actually quite moisturizing making perfect to use during cold weather or if you have dry skin. I also like using it in the morning for a quick cleanse that won’t disturb the balance of my face. 

The Caudalie 2015 Favorites Set contains a lovely selection of products and I love how everything should appeal to everyone. The sizes are all travel friendly but they have enough so you can really test them out. You can buy the set on the Caudalie website and all the products are available in full size and some in travel sizes. 

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Caudalie Fleur de Vigne French-Milled Soap

Caudalie has well stolen my heart with all its lovely body care products and I plan on introducing you to the range in a series of reviews. To get us started I thought it be good to start with one of the most affordable product from they offer, the Fleur de Vigne French-Milled Soap.

The traditional soap bar has lost its popularity over the years, with shower gels being more convenient and more moisturizing. But for some reason, I just love getting a bar soap from time to time and I really enjoy how they last much longer than shower gels. This Caudalie soap however, is in a league of its own.

It is a plant-based soap with skin nourishing ingredients like shea butter and grape seed oil. After every use, my skin is left soft and clean instead of stripped and there is no suds residue. This is one of the rare bar soaps that actually moisturizes the skin in such a way that you can feel it. It contains no sulfates so it is very gentle on the skin. This also means it does not foam as much as other soaps, but the lather it produces is not harsh and it actually feels nice and luxurious to use.  

Lastly it is massive, about twice the size of regular soap so it will last you forever. It is scented with the lovely Fleur de Vigne fragrance a very green and fresh scent that is super refreshing and relaxing at the same time. This is my favorite scent from Caudalie! Now you should know that while you can smell the fragrance when you are using it, it does not linger on the skin. I personally like this because you get to enjoy all the invigorating properties of the fragrance but you are assured it will not clash with any lotion or perfume you choose to wear after.

The Caudalie Fleur de Vigne French-Milled Soap is not available on their website, but I was able to pick mine up from a Caudalie counter at the drugstore so I suggest you go have a look in your closest retailer. 
© Daily dose of what I love. All rights reserved.