The miracle concealer!

Dior do some fantastic make up products – I was so impressed with their range, I opted to use it for my wedding day. It feels as though Dior actually know skin and how to help you create a lovely flawless, natural look. Their products seem acutely aware of the condition of your skin and I have found it is particularly good for combination or dry skin.

I could write about their entire range but that would mean the blog post would be way too long so instead I want to focus and review one particular product that I have been throughly impressed with – DIORSKIN NUDE CONCEALER… It is an absolute dream to use!

image curtsey of www.feelunique.com

image curtsey of http://www.feelunique.com

This concealer is very hydrating so perfect for combo and dry skin. It sits comfortably on the skin to the point you don’t feel like you are wearing any. It’s not cakey and doesn’t seem to block any pores. Due to its hydrating properties, I use it as an under-eye concealer. I have problems with dark circles & dry skin under my eyes. Every other concealer I had ever tried seemed to enhance my dark circles, but once I tried Dior’s nude concealer I honestly felt that I could actually achieve flawless, perfect, healthy-looking skin.

I only apply it once a day (maybe again if I am going out in the evening) and usually by the end of the day, it doesn’t seem to have disappeared very much. I think its down to the fluidity of the concealer and its lightness as the reason why it stays on your face. The other bonus is this concealer lasts a very long time. I brought a bottle March last year (2013) to get use to the product before my wedding day. I didn’t have to replace it until February 2014, the next year (and I was using it every single day)! Yes It basically lasts a year! You don’t need to use much as it spreads quite easily across the surface of your skin (particularly if you have used a moisturising eye cream underneath).

I don’t think I have ever come across such a perfect product before that I cannot really find any flaws with it and therefore would give it a 10/10! The only thing you want to watch out for is (and its nothing wrong with the concealer), if like me, you have small wrinkles under your eyes the concealer can get ‘caught’ in them and show them up a little – after 10 minutes of it being applied under the eye, I usually just use a finger tip to smooth out the concealer that ended up sitting in my wrinkles. It moves very easily and doesn’t affect the overall performance at all. I wouldn’t recommend using any powders under the eye though, as it makes the concealer less mobile on the skin and can actually make your under eyes look very dry indeed. Just make sure throughout the day, you aren’t touching your eyes if you can help it!

Thank you Dior…!

I did not receive any commission or any money for this review, this is my genuine opinion – links to websites are for your reference

8 hour dream cream?!

I have known about Elizabeth Arden’s 8 hour cream for the last couple of years – a skin protectant that can be used on literally every part of you for a whole range of reasons. On the back it states “this legendary skincare classic works wonders to moisturise and protect anytime, anyway you choose. Shape brows, revitalise shine, soothe dry hands and smooth cuticles and nails. Also for symptoms of chapping, peeling or cracked lips.”
Elizaberth Arden Eight Hour Cream (Skin Protectant)

Elizaberth Arden Eight Hour Cream (Skin Protectant)

A long list of potential benefits – I thought I would put each point to the test (as best as I can of course!)

Shape brows – I have tried it a couple of times and yes it does help to keep those stray hairs at bay, at least for a little while. When you first put it on, it gives your eye brows a subtle ‘wet’ look, so you really can’t use much. After about an hour I did find those stray hairs that never want to sit in place, sitting in the wrong place again! You would need to keep the 8 hour cream on you and apply it regularly if you wanted to keep a strict eyebrow shape. Definitely rate it a 4/10 for this usage – bit disappointed!

Revitalise shine – I honestly haven’t tried this out. I am not quite sure as someone with combination skin, I would want to add shine to my already shiny face. I am guessing if you had dry, flakey or dull skin, this would definitely be of benefit. The texture of the cream is gel like and slightly sticky so I could see it giving someone a natural shine – although I would use with caution. Can’t rate this, but maybe you can? Leave a comment and share your experience of this!

Soothe dry hands and smooth cuticles & nails – It definitely does this! I do suffer from dry hands particularly in winter and across my knuckles. Using just a little bit of this miracle cream, the dryness has been replaced with what looks like moisturised skin! Only problem is because of the texture and type of cream it is, where I have used it on my hand looks greasy/wet and this look hasn’t entirely gone within 5 minutes. Although the greasiness look has gone from around my cuticles. Within 20 minutes it still has a greasy/wet look on the skin. For this use I would rate it an 7/10 – its great to elevate dryness but leaves a residue/wet look behind. I’d also only put this on the areas you want it to work and not use it as an entire hand cream as the feeling afterwards becomes a sticky one and you won’t be able to touch anything for awhile!

Soothe dry skin:

Before applying cream - dryness around knuckles and in between fingers

Before applying cream – dryness around knuckles and in between fingers. Skin looks dull

After using the cream - dryness around knuckles and in between fingers gone - skin looks moisturised

After using the cream – dryness around knuckles and in between fingers gone – skin looks moisturised

Smooth cuticles

Before using cream -Dryness/flaky skin around cuticles (mine are pretty bad!)

Before using cream -Dryness/flaky skin around cuticles (mine are pretty bad!)

After using cream - appearance of cuticles much smoother and look more healthy & hydrated! They still do 20 minutes on!

After using cream – appearance of cuticles much smoother and look more healthy & hydrated! They still do 20 minutes on!

Peeling, chapped or cracked lips – I have used it a couple of times for this and my lips certainly feel moisturised immediately after applying the cream. It has a similar texture to lipstick when no the lips, as long as you don’t use too much. So if you hate lipgloss, this cream might be the way to go! It gives a natural shine without being heavy looking. In some way it actually brings out the colour of your lips which is a nice change from using red or pink lipsticks! Definitely rate it an 8/10 for this claim!

When I have used it on my hands, even after washing them countless times, I do see the texture of the skin is much more hydrated and that the dryness is not as bad before I started using this product. A good one for the winter – I’d recommend it (particularly on cuticles) if you find dryness of your skin very annoying! It definitely acts as a protective layer on the skin even after washing your hands – you can still feel its there. Overall, I give this product a strong 6/10. If they just removed the greasy look and feel, this would be a killer product!

I did not receive any commission or any money for this review, this is my genuine opinion – links to websites are for your reference

Aside

Skin is very temprimental and I am more unfortunate than most as I suffer with sensitive combination skin. Over many years I have tried quite a few skincare products. From some of the high street versions like Simple and Olay to the more premium end of the market like Clinque and Dermalogica. After so many years of trying different products from these brands I cam across the best so far… Decleor!

shutterstock_127734539

image curtsey of kimberlysynder.net – they too have tips for great skin!

I was having a lovely facial in Champney’s and the facial I chose was a Delceor one. The lady started to ‘sell’ the Decleor products to me and I thought oh gosh here we go again… can’t I just have a spa treatment in peace without her trying to sell to me? As she started her spill on Decleor, she said something pretty interesting about what it could do that no other brand had ever claimed. She said that all the ingredients are naturally derived. Quite a few of them are and that’s not what caught my attention.

At the time I had some blemish issues and pimples on my face – not too noticeable but very annoying for me. I had always suffered with a couple of pimple here and there and I put it down to not drinking enough water, oily skin and hormone changes taking place. One thing I could control is the oiliness of my skin and its appearance, using beauty products. So back to what the lady told me, she mentioned a Decleor product called ‘Aroma night’. It is a balm to be used at night, which helps to restore, re-hydrate and reduce redness and blemishes of the skin. Not only could it look to help reduce or even rid of these problems, the lady told me she had a scar on her hand. After approximately 2 – 3 weeks of using a very small amount of the aroma night on her scar, it actually started to disappear. It was something about the way she told me this and the genuineness plus an offer on a sample pack, which meant I walked out of that spa with some of Decleor’s products. It included the Cleaning Milk, Toner, a neroli essential oil (to put on the face), a light moisturiser and the aroma night balm she had told me about. My skin at the time was also feeling really nice, having just had a facial with Decleor products; I decided to give it a go.

Never have I or will I ever look at another skincare brand again! Decleor has an exceptional range of outstanding products that my sensitive skin has not reacted to, that has seen my blemishes reduced, redness too and those pimples I was having? ALL GONE. Obviously getting older actually sorts out the pimples, particularly when it is hormonal, but I really do believe Declecor contributed to my wonderful skin. I use just 3 products from Decleor twice a day (morning and night) to ensure a smooth complexion:

Decleor Aroma Cleanse Essentia Cleansing Milk 200ml –  Decleor’s description of this product is as follows: “A light-textured lotion perfect for cleansing and make-up removal on all skin types. Our paraben-free forumula contains Neroli Essential Oil to protect, repair and fight dehydration, leaving skin moisturised and radiant plus Sweet Almond Oil to help soften, smooth and bring comfort to the skin.”

aroma-cleanse-essential-cleansing-milk

When used to the instructions, twice a day, this product is a winner for me. It gave me soft skin, cleaned off all of my make up and my skin never feels dry after using. It also contains neroli, an essential oil, which helps to treat skin exposed to stress and is a good hydrator. I would rate this product seriously as a 9/10. The reason it is not a 10 is it doesn’t quite get all of the make up off, particularly black eye liner, but it only ever leaves a little bit behind and the remaining comes off with the toner or the next morning when I re-clean my face with the cleansing milk.Reasonably priced for a premium skin product, its available at £20.

They have a couple of toner options and I started off with one of them, but eventually switched to this one – Decleor Aroma Cleanse Fresh Matifying Lotion (toner) – Delecor states that this is a “A fresh lotion which tones, purifies and mattifies combination to oily skin. This paraben-free toner contains Ylang Ylang Essential Oil to help purify and balance the skin, Papaya Extract with its exfoliating properties helps to refine the skin and Mineral Powders to absorb excess sebum leaving a matte finish.”

aroma-cleanse-fresh-matifying-lotion_0

This toner has a different essential oil in it – Ylang Ylang (more below on this!). I believe using this toner once in the morning and once in the evening is why my skin is the best it can be – well hydrated, smooth, clean and moisturised. Once applied, this too doesn’t dry my skin out or make it feel dry and I believe this is down to the essential oil they use. They must use a slightly higher concentration of essential oils in their products than most other brands, because I do receive the best benefits from this skincare routine. I would rate this product an outstanding 10/10!! I really cannot fault it – it works perfectly with my combination skin!

Finally from the Decleor range, I also use this product twice a week (I use it as part of my morning skincare routine) – Decleor Aromessence Ylang Ylang Super Serum – It is perfect for oily skin – finally a way to control the oil! Decleor say the serum’s “…Essential Oils purify the epidermis, reducing excess sebum and closing the pores. It is a real efficiency booster for the Aroma Purete Shine Control Oxygenating Fluid’

aromessence-ylang-ylang-super-serum

All I do is put a little on my hands and pat it around the entirety of my face and neck. It helps for any moisturisers you put on afterwards to seep into the skin better.

So literally when I step out of the shower I use the cleansing milk, the toner and then the serum before I then moisturise and that’s IT! You don’t need to use water directly onto your face, which is great thing for combination skin. You simply put on the cleansing milk with your hands, wipe it off with a cotton pad (with some water on the pad for ease!). You then put a little bit of the toner onto a cotton pad (and a little water onto the cotton pad too, to help spread it around your face easily) wiping the pad around the forehead, nose, cheeks and chin. Then use any moisturiser! I use an Olay moisturiser in the form of a beauty serum as it is light and provides me with enough hydration without then becoming oily. Twice a week I think use the Ylang Ylang essential oil super serum.

If buying the full versions of these is too much for a first try, seriously grab a sample pack or even get some free samples from your local department store (like John Lewis) and give it a go. Everyone I know who uses Decleor raves about it and would never use anything else again! I sure won’t! I could try and talk about it all day, but its just better if you try it for yourself and see the results!

Decleor Product images from Decleor.co.uk

I did not receive any commission or any money for this review, this is my genuine opinion – links to websites are for your reference

Gel my nails up BABY!

I have been striving for pretty nails for such a long long time. I hate acrylics as they are damaging and make your nails very soft which means they become brittle and break so easily. Also, just going for a manicure and have some colour, while nice at the time, disappointment comes quickly when the nail polish they applied starts chipping off. So when Gels and Schallac Nails came on the scene I became interested!

I first found out from a friend when she came over and showed me her nails and told me that they wouldn’t chip or come off for 2 weeks! While that was quite a long time for nail polish, for £45 to get a set on, I thought it was very expensive. One day I did find a nail salon which did it for £25 so I went in and had my first experience of it – wow was I impressed! It lasted 3 weeks the first time and also 4 weeks the second time (it seems as though my nails didn’t grow as fast the second time around). One thing that really did bother me was the cost of getting them done – £20 – £25 each time to get them taken off and to re-do them, every 2 – 3 weeks felt like a lot of money (approx. £600 a year just for beautiful nails!)

So I started thinking about how I could keep this up but without paying out loads and I found a solution – D I Y!!! I’ll do it myself! At home kits are becoming available, Boots sell a version called Sensationail which uses a LED light (rather than UV light) and that seemed to work ok (my friend tried it, but said just coming up to two weeks, it started chipping). I used a version called Perfect Match from Le Chat Nails (professional nail care). The process didn’t take long (up to 30minutes the first time I tried it) and the results were brilliant! I still have them on and for a first go, I think they came up alright!

curtsey of Le Chat Nails

This is the finished product I tired with this kit:

I rate this concept a big 10/10 but if you are conscious on cost, then I would get an at home kit, starting prices roughly £60+ and comes with a UV/LED Light :) - at home kits I would rate a 8/10 because it will never rate up to professionals, but they are damn good!

I did not receive any commission or any money for this review, this is my genuine opinion – links to websites are for your reference

What I took on holiday #2 Makeup

Holiday makeup (c) PeachyLau

Holiday makeup (c) PeachyLau

1 Sephora Pinceau poudre XL 49 I cannot remember how much I paid for this brush, probably 20€ with my Sephora discount. It seemed like a lot at the time but it has been a very good investment. It really makes a difference to have a good powder brush. I have washed it many times and its shape is still very good. 10/10

Pinceau Blush Biseauté n°40. Same comment as above, a good makeup brush can definitely take your makeup to the next level. I really like this brush and have been really impressed by its quality. 10/10

L’Oreal Lash Architect Mascara 4D I really like this mascara. It is very black, which is a big bonus. It really defines the lashes without clumping them. The brush is quite fine and allows to reach all your lashes, even the bottom ones. It gives great length, curve, volume….hang on it does what it promises to do!! I have already bought this 3 times and when you see all the different mascaras out there, it means a lot. 10/10

4 Natural Collection eye white eye pencil. I love putting some white eye pencil in the inside of my lower-lid. I think that it really widens my eyes and makes me look more awake. I bought this one from Boots. I cannot find the link but it was very cheap. E.L.F also sells a cheap one. 10/10

L’Oreal – Color Appeal Eyeshadow Platinum Beige. I think this is the only eye shadow I have been wearing for the past year. I apply it with my finger, it is very long lasting and I just love the colour. 10/10

6 Garnier Caffeine Anti-dark Circles 2-in-1 Roll-on – Fair My biggest make-up challenge is to cover my dark circles. Problems is that I also have fine lines under my eyes.  Really thick and covering concealer always end up going into my fine lines after a couple of hours which in my opinion looks worse than having dark circles. This concealer is a fairly good compromise. It brightens the under-eye area and does not migrate into my fine lines. However it is not covering enough to my liking but it is the best I have found so far. It is easy to apply and to blend. I do not think that the caffeine in the formula does anything to my under eye as I use this every morning and have not seen any improvement. I rate this 8/10 as it is the best for me, despite not being covering enough. If you have any good ender eye concealer to suggest, please let me know in the comment section :)

Garnier Garnier Pure Active 2in1 Tinted Spot Roll-on Fair Skin Tone 15ml I really like the idea of treating and concealing blemishes at the same time. When I have a few spots like I had before going on holiday, I use this concealer instead of the Collection 2000 one. The fair colour suits my skin tone and I think this really helps drying out any blemishes. It is better to powder it a bit after as it is not the most long lasting concealer. As far as I know this only exists in 2 colours, fair and medium which is disappointing. I had originaly bought the medium one which ended up being really dark for me. One of the things I do not like about this product is that as it is not makeup, there are no testers in retailers so you cannot judge very well if the colour suits you or not. At £10 a tube, it is quite an expensive mistake. However, if the colour matches you skin, I think it is a very good product. Because of the lack of testing and colour range which coasted me money I only put 6/10 but put it this way, I will buy it again in “Fair” once I finish this one.

8 Benefit Sugar Bomb Blush. I really like this blush. It blends really well and the final colour is a nice light coral-pink. It is quite shimmery. It is OK at the moment as my skin is still quite pale. I however feel that I will need something a bit more pigmented when I get a little tan 9/10.

Sugarbomb, Benefit (c) PeachyLau

Sugarbomb, Benefit (c) PeachyLau

Sephora Poudre Matifiante Compacte This powder is not as mattifying as I would like it to be. However I really like that is it a bit tinted and even though it does not have any coverage, I feel that it evens my skin tone and allows the concealer to last longer. I really wish they had Sephora in the UK.  7/10 for this product. Do you have a good mattifying powder to recommend?

What’s in your holiday makeup bag?

xx PeachyLau

I did not receive any commission or any money for this review, this is my genuine opinion – links to websites are for your reference

What I took on holiday #1 Hair styling

Hi dolls,

When going on holidays, I can obviously not pack my whole bathroom, I have to stick to my “must have” products. I recently went abroad and it was a great way to make me realise that there are indeed a few products that I cannot live without. Today I am going to present you my two favourite hair styling products . I have been using them for 5 years at least.

I should precise that I have shoulder length curly hair and that as many other curly hair owners, I have to deal with dry hair and avoid frizziness as much as possible. Do not get me wrong, I looooooove my curly hair and never straighten it (even after going to the hairdressers, I ask to leave the salon with curly hair).

favourite holiday haircare (c) PeachyLau

favourite holiday haircare (c) PeachyLau

Featured on the left: L’Oreal – ELVIVE Smooth Intense Anti-Frizz Serum. This product is called a “serum” but to me it is more of an oil as the texture is a bit runny. I have been using this for years. I find it perfect to tame the frizziness and nourish my hair at the same time, without any product build up.  It is lightly scented. I usually use it every morning in between shampoos. One or two pumps is more than enough for my hair. It is very reasonably priced, between £4.50 and £5.00, depending on the retailer and the offers. This product can be found at your local supermarket, Boots or Superdrugs. For our French readers, you can also easily find this product at the supermarket or in Monoprix.

I rate this product 9/10. I do not put it a 10/10 because I think it could be slightly more nourishing.

Our guest start on the right is: Umberto Giannini Scrunching Curl Friends Jelly.

Curl jelly (c) PeachyLau

Curl jelly (c) PeachyLau

As indicated by its name, it is a jelly. It has the consistency of a jelly and a light pink colour. The smell is quite “manly” in the sense that it is not sweet and reminds me of aftershave. No worries, it is not long lasting at all and you can not smell it after a few minutes.  A bit more than double the amount pictured on the left is enough for my hair. I use this product on wet hair after washing it. I turn my wet hair upside down, rake a small amount through and then scrunch upwards before leaving my hair to dry naturally. It keeps my curls much neater and not at all frizzy. In the long term this product can dry out the hair  a bit. I counteract this by using a good hair mask (more on that later) and the L’Oreal – ELVIVE Smooth Intense Anti-Frizz Serum.  So far I have only found this product in Boots . It is £4.79 for the full size product, pictured above is just the travel size one. I do not think that this product can be found in France.

I rate this product 9/10. I do not give it the full mark because of its slightly drying effect.

I have TONS of hair products but it is true that I have these two products in triplicate: 1 bottle of each at home, my gym bag and at my boyfriend’s. Crazy I know.

See you soon for another  post on the rest of my holiday toiletries.

xx PeachyLau

I did not receive any commission or any money for this review, this is my genuine opinion – links to websites are for your reference

Beautiful Serum from Soap & Glory!

For months I have had issues with my skin – in particular, dry patches, bumps/rashes (on my forehead), oily T-Zone and dreaded pimples! None of these are desirable at all and what makes it worse for me is I have combination skin. The more people I talk to about skin, the more I am finding that people have combination skin. It seems to me that combination skin is the hardest to try and tame as you need to find products that help to balance the oil your skin needs, to moisturising the dry areas on your face.

Second image curtsey of Jenzel

I have always used a moisturiser, particularly for underneath my eyes (instead of using an eye serum/cream!). However for me, it never quite did all the jobs it needed to. It wouldn’t quite moisturise around and on my nose, cheeks and forehead (which for me is dry in the morning and by afternoon is shiny as anything!) and even though I would only put a little bit on my T-Zone/forehead to counteract the oil, it didn’t last and I ended up being very frastrated about it!

Last year I had a £50 moisturising serum from Dermalogica and I thought it was absolutely fabulous! It really did help to brighten my skin, tackle the dry patches on my face, keep the surface of my skin moisturised while counteracting the oil (it does this by providing enough moisturise to the area which lessened the amount of oil my skin needed to make throughout the day as it was moisturised enough – that is why you get so oily because your skin’s surface is trying to replenish moisture to the skin as it gets dried out and affected by humidity, pollution, etc ). It also helped to keep spots at bay too! So while I was in bliss using this serum, one day I ran out…just like that! I thought not much of it and went back to using basic moisturiser… bad choice!!

So back to my recent situation with my problem skin. I remembered the affect the  Dermalogica beauty serum had on my face and so I went hunting for a cheaper yet still quality version of the serum. I went into Boots and had a look at their No.7 range. They had one for around £16 which I thought was quite reasonable (reason I think this is because a beauty serum is a more concentrated moisturiser and yet feels quite light when you apply). While I thought the price tag was good, a sudden thought popped into my head. I have always been amazed at the quality of Soap & Glory’s products, so I went over to the Soap & Glory section in Boots to see if they stocked a beauty serum – whatcha know, they had a beauty serum for only £14 called Make Yourself Youthful (cheaper than No.7!). I decided to purchase it and use it to see if it would dramatically change my skin’s surface…… I bet you are wondering if it did or not…. or maybe you have already guessed?!

Well you probably did guess it (!)… this product had dramatically changed the surface of my skin. My skin is now so smooth and the serum has really tackled the dryness and oilness of my skin, by balancing the areas nicely. While yes, I do get some shine in the afternoon, it is nothing compared to before – your skin will, after all, create oil. As for the pimples, they are on the way out!

The Product Claims – does this product meet the claims it makes?

- ‘Packed with collagen-boosting PENTAPEPTIDES, proven wrinkle-smoother- DELINER’ - well I won’t be able to comment on this until I am well into my 50s, however, collagen is known to help fill in wrinkles, fine lines and smooth out the skin’s surface. Touching my face right now, it’s as smooth as a baby’s skin would be!

- ‘Secret, circulation stimulating organic OXYGEN COMPLEX’ –  If you read articles online, oxygen is the new ingredient in beauty – it is meant to provide the right amount of moisturiser to the skin’s surface and my skin is more balanced than ever – it really does compliment and work well with combination skin.

- ‘helps to re-energise tired skin, smooth surface imperfections’ – yes, my skin is a lot brighter and even my blemishes have reduced!

- ‘refine pores, recalibrate uneven skin tone’ - I think my pores are the same (small) but my skin tone has definitely evened up in places which actually helps reduce the appearance of pores anyway.

- ‘brighten, tone and tighten, while acting as a light-medium nightly moisturiser’ - yes I can’t stop mentioning how much more brighter my skin is! Although, I don’t think it completely tightens my skin, but it makes it feel comfortable instead. As for night moisturiser, I actually use it both day and night – but I don’t use heaps in the morning!

Here, direct from Soap & Glory’s website is the How to use instructions:

“INSTRUCTIONS FOR USE

Morning or evening, smooth 2-3 pumps of Make Yourself Youthful™ onto well-cleansed skin: face, neck, even the back of your hands, if they’ve kind of ‘had it’. If your skin is dry, follow with your regular day or night moisturizer.”
- I do use it with a day moisturiser, which I lightly apply (like very lightly!)
So my rating for this product is a serious 10/10 !!!!!!! I love this so much I am now very loyal to the beauty serum! This is certainly my product of the MONTH! Why not read more about it and give it a try yourself?!
I did not receive any commission or any money for this review, this is my genuine opinion – links to websites are for your reference