Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Beauty Product of the Month - September: Blanx Intense stain removal toothpaste

(I know this is super late, but I still wanted to throw this in, and hopefully get back on track with my blogging now!)

Teeth whitening has now become as big an obsession in the UK as it is in the States. I’m sure the rise of celebrity culture has a large part to do with that, it’s rare to turn on the TV or open a magazine and not see bright pearly whites gleaming back at you, and I suppose like a lot of people, I too have looked at the possible ways of making my teeth whiter, and I’ve been slightly horrified at the lengths some people are willing to go to, to achieve such results, risking losing not only a lot of money but the health of their teeth.Toothpastes that are designed to whiten your teeth cannot change the natural colour of your teeth but can help to remove the stains. I haven’t been down the path of having expensive procedures at the dentist, but I’m happy to use safe whitening toothpastes. What I like about Blanx is it’s a little bit different to other whitening toothpastes on the market. It’s based on arctic lichen which was discovered by scientists in the arctic. They found that the native population had exceptionally white and healthy teeth from using lichen on their teeth and gums. Blanx is one of the least abrasive whitening toothpastes on the market which means it does not damage the enamel of your teeth.

I have read too many horror stories of teeth bleaching gone wrong that I have been put off from this process. In the short run, it can cause teeth sensitivity to hot and cold, in the long run, it can cause damage to your enamel. I recommend this product because it is perfectly safe to use and rather than harshly whitening your teeth, it’s aim is to return teeth to their own natural whiteness. I have used the other products in the Blanx range, but the Intense Stain Removal toothpaste is the only one I have noticed considerable difference with. I’m an avid tea drinker and had started to notice slight tanning at the sides of some of my teeth, and this toothpaste managed to easily remove it. Admittedly it is unnatural to have amazingly white teeth, but I can’t see this obsession fading away any time soon. If I knew a perfectly safe way to have the whitest teeth myself, I’m sure I would, but for now, I’m happy using this.

Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Fashion's Bright Side

In this season’s Style and Design supplement to Time magazine, there features a heading on the cover “Fashion’s Bright Side: 12 women who are redefining luxury in a new era.” Amongst articles on Donna Karen, a CEO of fashion label 3.1 Phillip Lim and ex-creative director of the label Rocawear, there’s a space dedicated to none other than Lauren Luke. This feature in the magazine takes the time to honour women whose role in fashion is significant and in keeping with the changing times. The stories of these women are truly inspirational and it’s refreshing to read about fashion with a heart so if you want to read more in depth about any of these yourself, go to:,28804,1921163_1921155,00.html

The piece on Lauren Luke calls her an “Internet makeup guru” which is what we all know and love her for, but reading about her in this particular magazine really made me feel so proud of her, cementing her role in the beauty industry. I’ve followed Lauren’s videos from the beginning and seen her rise to fame. She’s not only popular on the internet but increasingly more people are aware of her who haven’t seen her videos or the journey she’s been on. Lauren is finally being recognised for the talent that she has. So congratulations Lauren!

Here is Lauren's piece:,28804,1921163_1921155_1921160,00.html

Saturday, 26 September 2009

Make-up Product of the Month - September: Rimmel Clean Complexion Clarifying Powder

I wanted to give a little rave about a product I’ve been using a lot this month: Rimmel London’s Clean Complexion Clarifying Powder. I believe this is available in a few shades, but I bought the Transparent version, number 021 because I didn’t want the hassle of matching it up to my current foundation. I bought this because I find that when using a liquid foundation, if it isn’t MAC’s Studio Fix Fluid, then I need a powder to touch it up and keep away that shine. This product works beautifully for that and I love the fact that it contains natural minerals. I’m still a tiny bit sceptical of mineral products and how natural some of them are, and I’m not sure how this powder differs from Rimmel’s Stay Matte powder in Transparent. I haven’t used it so I can’t compare, but it is possible this is the same product marketed a slightly different way. Either way, it’s still great and I find if I apply on top of my foundation in the morning, I only need to apply it again in the afternoon to get my make-up looking new and refreshed. It’s very easy to apply but I would stress that this product is for setting your foundation and taking away shine, it will not provide any extra coverage. As for its claims it contains ingredients that help minimise breakouts, again I’m not so sure, but it certainly hasn’t increased my breakouts, so if this is a problem for you with other powders you have used, by all means try this.Clear complexion is widely available and is really cheap! I believe I only paid £3 for this. It’s quite easy to overlook because of its cheap and non-descript packaging, but it does the same job as its more expensive rivals so for that reason, I am featuring it as my MUPOTM. The only downside (and I have to say this because let’s face it most products have something you’d like to make better), is that it doesn’t come with a sponge applicator. Because I use this on the go, I prefer a sponge applicator just because it’s so easy, but I guess this leaves you the option to use a brush to apply it with if you would rather.

Tuesday, 22 September 2009


I was very excited to hear I’d won a prize in let there be shopping’s contest. I won two products I have been quite eager to try. Firstly there’s the much blogged about Colorsensational lipstick by Maybelline in Ambre Rose. I’ve had a chance to try it out now and am really happy with it. I really like the consistency of this lipstick, it’s very moisturising and has a nice glossy feel to it, so I don’t feel the need to wear a gloss over the top. The colour pay-off is pretty impressive too, this is one of the most neutral colours in the range but still makes a considerable difference to my lips. I would recommend viewing these lipsticks for yourself, if you like your dark shades or reds, there’s plenty to choose from, but make sure you swatch them because I find the colours very untrue to the stickers on the bottom. I’ve never really found the colours of the stickers very useful, but they are particularly unhelpful with this range of lipsticks!
The second product I received was the Sleek pout polish in Electro Peach. I'm a huge Sleek fan so keen to try out any of their products, I haven't had a single disappointment yet which is great for a relatively new brand. The colour is very bright and conventionally a bit off putting for someone of my skintone. You can get quite a good colour pay-off with this product if that’s what you want, but I will use this in the same way I’d use a lip balm, just a small amount so the colour is a lot less scary. I actually love the smell of this, it reminds me of a Natural Collection set of stackable lipbalms I had when I was younger and used to death (they were such a novel idea, I wish they’d bring them back!). There are some key ingredients in here which are very beneficial for keeping your lips in good condition, those being: Jojoba oil, Shea butter, Sweet almond oil and avocado oil. I was quite surprised to see so many nourishing ingredients in one product, especially one not from Lush! May need to stock up on a few more of these, I'll see how I get on with it for a few days and see if there's any improvement to the condition of my lips.
So big thanks to Marcia for the prizes. xXx

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Weekend away

I feel like I haven’t blogged in such a long time, I’m so sorry! I’ve been pretty busy and exhausted after starting my new job. I’m getting in to the swing of it now so will be able to catch up with all of your blogs, and hopefully begin writing again. I just want to take a moment to say thank you to everyone who’s become a follower, I’m getting close to the 100 mark now which is very exciting. When I get there I want to do a giveaway featuring some Barry M and Sleek goodies, but more about that nearer the time. It really means a lot that people take the time to read my posts and leave comments, and I still get excited when I see I have a new follower, so thank you so much, it’s really appreciated.

Anyway, before I sound completely cheesy, I'll move onto my weekend news. Because I feel like I’ve been working so hard during the week, it’s important to try and make the most of the weekend, so this weekend I got to go away with friends to the south coast and stay in a cottage in a place called Rye. It was very idyllic, I felt completely relaxed and it was almost like going back in time. I felt a million miles away from London, which sometimes is just what you need, at least for a weekend.

This is the cottage we stayed in, so pretty. It's in a tiny place called Winchelsea, the sort of place where everyone says hello to one another and is completely peaceful.

View from the bedroom, I could have got used to waking up to the gorgeous garden in the morning. I hope I get another chance to see this place, it's not really somewhere I could live but it makes the perfect getaway. It's particularly special to me because I'm a total beach bum at heart, and being from the Midlands it wasn't easy to just go to the beach for the day so I really savour my time on the beach, wherever it is.

(Back to make-up and beauty posts soon, I promise.)

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Skincare Routine: Updated and budgeted!

Every now and again I like to mix up my skincare a bit. I find something, or a combination of products that work for me, but then still feel the need to try something else, in case maybe it’s better. I’ve been on the poor side recently so I’ve been looking for inexpensive yet efficient products. I love the brand Simple, and have done for a long time now, I like that I’m using products that both do the job they’re intended for and are kind to my skin. Their oil balancing moisturiser is one I’ve stuck with even if I’ve changed my cleanser and toner. It’s not that I don’t want to try anything else; I know that one day my skin will change and I will need a moisturiser more hydrating, but for now this is the perfect moisturiser for me. Having said all this, I did actually change it recently! I ran out of my HG moisturiser and had to replace it, I only had time to go to one shop and they only stocked the light and heavy (or intense?not sure what it’s called) Simple moisturisers. I went for the light, and I think it’s great. I really don’t like to use perfumed moisturisers, or perfumed anything for that matter, on my face. This is just a really basic, no frills moisturiser that will suit most people, yet when I buy Simple I still feel like I’m buying a decent product, where the quality isn’t jeopardised. I’m also using Biore’s Pore Unclogging Scrub in place of my favourite face wash Lush’s Angels on Bare Skin, because it’s half the price! It does the job, but I don’t believe it’s a better product in any way and I can’t wait to go back to my Lush. The cleanser by Simple is pretty standard, not designed for a specific skin type as is the toner which I’m using in place of Lush Tea Tree Water, all to save the pennies!

I start my new job tomorrow (eeee!) so after payday I can carry on shopping as normal and would like to experiment a bit more with high end products, or at least return to my favourite mid-range: Lush, but really I’m wondering if I need to spend a lot on beauty products. I know I shouldn’t really moan about having no money in times like these because I wasn’t made redundant unlike the scenario for a lot of people out there, I left my job willingly to move to London, and luckily it worked out for the best. But in my time of thrift, I’ve learned how to budget properly and not waste money, important life lessons! I was thinking, when it comes to skincare, what products do I really not need to spend very much money on. For a face-wash, I like the product to be as close to nature as possible, which often means it’s more expensive. I prefer using Lush because even though the product gets washed away, there are no nasty chemicals in there which can make your skin worse. I believe a cleanser, since it’s a product that has a primary purpose to take off make-up and wipe away impurities, can be skimped on. It doesn’t really benefit your skin too much to have fancy ingredients. The ingredients will not stay on your skin long enough to make any real difference. Toners and moisturisers on the other hand stay on the skin longer. Toners leave a residue as they tighten and close your pores, and moisturisers are obviously designed to sink into your skin. So finding a good quality moisturiser that works for you is important, since this is also the base for your make-up. I’ve always felt like I would be willing to spend more on a great moisturiser, but then I’ve seen television programmes and read in magazines how Simple comes out on top even next to a brand like Chanel in a blind test and wonder if it’s really necessary to splurge, especially since I love Simple myself.

So I guess this is a post to show you what I’m using right now, and give you some ideas if you’re budgeting like me! But also to ask the question: which high end skincare products do you use that you don’t feel like you could find a drugstore equivalent to? Or are you happy using drugstore?
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