Monday, 27 January 2020

Good Molecules*...Effective and Affordable Skincare



Effective and Affordable Skincare


This brand has totally taken over the scene and you will find them popping up on Instagram all over the place and for good reason. Drawing from their experience Good Molecules is founded by a team of beauty veterans who want to provide solutions to skin issues without the high retail mark up. Effective skincare at reasonable prices catch people’s eye and GM have been one of the brands to really deliver. It’s great to have more choice in this market as The Ordinary have reigned the crown for so long! I was kindly sent a bundle of their products from Beautylish and have been trialling them for a good few months so here are my thoughts…


Niacinamide Brightening Toner – $14


This is my favourite product in the range, the headliner if you will. The brands bread and butter (in my opinion). I used this every day since I received it and now the bottle is empty so that tells you everything! This has a thick essence like texture that easily dispenses from the aperture lid (it doesn't pour out quickly, you need to gently shake the bottle which I love). Either pat on with hands or apply with a cotton pad. Instantly the skin is bouncier and visibly brightened. 


Over time with consistent use this toner helped fade scarring and reduce the appearance of pores thanks to Niacinamide being up there as the 3rd ingredient. The ingredients in this are really fantastic, Arbutin improves the look of pigmentation while Liquorice Root soothes inflammation. A stable form of Vitamin C promotes collagen production and provides antioxidant protection. In fact, if you are sensitive to Vitamin C or Niacinamide then I highly recommend giving this a go as a way to amp up your routine. I love that it plays well with products layered over the top and it provides something beneficial for the skin with noticeable results. Will definitely be purchasing this!



Hyaluronic Acid Serum - $6


HA serums can be hit and miss; they are an absolute essential for me but I have tried so many that are sticky and unpleasant to use. This is neither of those things, it glides onto skin, is lightweight but not excessively runny and absorbs quickly without any tacky residue. It is one of the best HA formulations I’ve tried, and the price just cannot be beaten. You can afford to be a little heavier handed with it! 


Overnight Exfoliating Treatment - $6


This potent 10% blend of AHA & BHA’s (glycolic, lactic and salicylic) gives you real bang for your buck. Think along the lines of Drunk Elephant Framboos without the high price tag. Honestly, I hate the word dupe, but this really is very similar in terms of results. I’ve been applying this serum straight onto dry skin after cleansing before carrying on with the rest of my routine. Long term (over the course of 4-6weeks) it has improved the texture of my skin but overnight it works its magic especially on congestion and blemishes. There is a little tingle upon application but nothing uncomfortable, I always make sure to follow up with hydrating layers.


Silicone Free Priming Moisturiser - $14


This naturally derived silicone alternative moisturiser is surprisingly hydrating whilst being lightweight on the skin. As you would hope makeup applies beautifully over this so would be a fantastic option for those that would like to cut out the primer step and just use one product. It truly delivers. It has a light gel/cream texture that is formulated with Shea (hasn’t clogged my pores) and Macadamia seed oil. Essential fatty acids from olive oil strengthens the skins barrier whilst maintaining moisture levels. I personally apply this before my SPF and I still see benefit from the priming abilities. 


Niacinamide Serum - $6


This is the one I’ve used the least purely because the packaging doesn’t seem to play ball. The pipette doesn’t seem to pick up any product and I really struggle to get it out of the bottle. Unfortunately, I cannot really comment on the effectiveness of this serum as I just haven’t used it enough. I will say it does apply nicely to the skin and seems to play well with others. I’ve spoken to others about this serum and it seems like a generic problem with this product so it may be worth Good Molecules looking into repackaging. It’s bizarre as I don’t have the same issue with the other bottles! 


I’ve loved trying this brand, they have worked well for my skin and their formulations prove you don’t need to spend a fortune to achieve results. I can gladly say that I will be replacing some of these products once finished!
Have you tried Good Molecules? I plan to try their Super Peptide serum next as I am getting into those in a big way! You can buy them through Beautylish here where shipping to the UK is free for orders over $35. 

*PR but all opinions my own, as always.

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Tuesday, 19 November 2019

MAKETHEMAKE* Brand Review





When this parcel arrived from Skincity I could not believe the generosity. So many products all housed inside a large makeup bag! Literally the dream. I am so grateful to get the opportunity to try MaketheMake as their philosophy is totally me. They have been created by skincare therapists and this is what makes them unique. They are all about ensuring their products support and care for the skin whilst providing natural coverage. Which I’m completely here for. Each product is packed with ingredients that serve a purpose by improving the condition and appearance of the skin with every application. Ingredients include Hyaluronic Acid, Squalane, Peptides and Vitamin E. These are found in their range of makeup bag essentials (concealers, foundations, bronzers etc).

In addition to the makeup I was also sent a large collection of their own brand brushes which are made with a synthetic vegan fibre and Taklon bristles. Designed to provide flawless and easy application. They couldn’t have come at a more perfect time as my brushes have had their time and should probably be replenished! I’m not even going to admit how old they are. I’ve chucked most of my old ones and have been using these constantly since I received them. The results they give are so so good. Makeup blends quickly like a dream and they are super soft on the skin. The shapes of the brushes are quite unique, and they actually work. I would never have thought to try a flat bronzing brush, but it works amazingly! I seriously could not be happier that I have these, I will look after them and hold them dear.

Now onto the makeup. I am going to break it down by doing micro reviews of each one as I think that would be easier to digest! In no particular order…



Vitamin C Tinted Moisturiser - £22

This smells pretty bad, not going to lie. A little like hotdogs (something that you might expect if you are familiar with Vitamin C) and it comes out quite orange in colour. I didn’t think it would be the right match for me but surprisingly it blends imperceptibly into the skin! It’s a little darker than my natural skin tone but I can get away with it without looking like I’ve consumed too much sunny D!
It leaves skin feeling quite moisturised, isn’t greasy and settles down to a satin kind of finish. It’s one of those products you can pop on with your hands quickly. There isn’t much coverage, but it gives a lovely healthy look to skin and makes it look less drab. Unfortunately the smell has meant I haven’t been reaching for this as much and I have to make a conscious effort to reach for this which is a shame because it is a great product!

Niacinamide Setting Powder - £22

This loose powder is an everyday staple for me. As the name suggests it contains niacinamide and is fantastic at blurring pores and settling oiliness. I use under my eyes and on my T-zone using a small setting brush. It doesn’t crease or dry out the skin. Even though it is white in colour there is no cast or chalkiness and it blends beautifully with my skin tone. I wish they did this in a solid powder compact so I could pop in my bag!

Squalane Melting Foundation SPF30 - £22

This is a great base for when you want to add a little bit of coverage or if you want to build it up to something a bit heavier. It doesn’t cake, goes on effortlessly and isn’t a drying powder. I like to use the MaketheMake foundation brush to buff this in. It’s so quick and easy and more often than not I like to apply over tinted moisturiser for a bit more coverage. An issue I tend to have with loose foundations is that they settle into pores and look cakey but not with this. With it being infused with squalane this is what makes the difference I think as it gives a very smooth finish to the skin.

Ceramide Elastic Concealer - £18

This has been my go-to since I got it. Fantastic under the eyes and all over, it’s hydrating but doesn’t slip and slide everywhere. I find it has medium coverage and is very lightweight, I can barely feel it on the skin. It can be built up easily, a little goes a long way with this. It somehow brightens under the eyes but when applied to the face it doesn’t look glowy, more of a natural affinity with the skin. Just melts in.

Niacinamide Soft Focus Primer - £18

I’m a bit on the fence with primers, I rarely like any and most of the time I will skip this step. Not since I’ve received this one though. Seriously it’s probably the best one I’ve tried. It comes as a lightweight gel with pearl light reflecting pigments, it doesn’t feel silicone heavy and it doesn’t just sit on top of skin. It smooths and blurs pores whilst absorbing sebum and leaves a natural finish. Matte but not flat, hydrated but not greasy. It’s wonderful! The addition of niacinamide ensures it cares for skin more than a standard primer would, and rather than increasing the likelihood of a breakout this helps prevent them from happening. Would recommend this for most skins.

Vitamin E Illuminating Balm and Hyaluronic Gloss Pot - £22.50

This is a double ended little wonder. The illuminating balm is perfect as a dewy highlighter, it sits beautifully on top of skin and is what I use when I want to give my skin a little lift. A beautiful product, if you are a highlighter fan you must try this one. And it would be even more perfect for someone with dry skin as it melts in and infuses moisture. The gloss pot is such a cool product. If you love the ‘wet’ look then this will be right up your street. I personally use this on my eyelids to give a glossy sheen that is on trend right now, but you could use it as a highlighter giving you more of powerwatt sheen than what the balm would. It isn’t sticky in the slightest. This duo is the ideal travel companion.

Vitamin C Soft Compact Bronzer - £26

When I first looked at this bronzer I honestly did not think it would be the right shade match for me. It looks so much darker in the pan than on the skin. I have SB1 and it works with my skin tone perfectly, I use the bronzer brush to apply and the pay off is fantastic. I only need a small amount to give me a natural glow to the skin. It isn’orange and it doesn’t contain any glitter or shimmer. A perfect matte bronzer. There is something so attractive about the large packaging with a mirror. It's partly the reason why I wanted the Marc Jacobs O!Mega one so now I have this I'm content! 

Oil Absorbing Sheets - £9

These are a great thing to keep in your handbag, I’ve been opting to use these instead of powder to touch up my oily t-zone as they take up less space in my bag and they work. Makeup isn’t disturbed and they genuinely work at absorbing shine without drying out the skin. I’ve never used a product like this before so cannot compare to other brands but these are a great price and do the job! Highly recommend!

As you can see I’m absolutely loving MaketheMake. It is rare to try a collection and enjoy every single one! I am totally surprised and grateful to have been gifted so many products. I still want to try more though! The Melon Moisture Mist sounds gorgeous and I’ve seen people wearing the Vitamin B Flawless Filter Foundation so that’s one I want to try. The finish looks beautiful. The Bisabolol Hydrating Oil Primer looks like a must have for winter so I may have to put that on the Christmas list!

You can purchase this brand from Skincity here

*PR/Gifted

Thank you for reading!xx









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Thursday, 31 October 2019

Klairs Watery Oil Drop*... a serum which works like an oil?!



A serum which works like an oil? You bet I wanted to love this and spoiler, it didn't disappoint!

This product is somewhat of a hybrid between an oil and a hydrating serum but bizarrely it doesn’t contain any oil whatsoever! It has totally blown my socks off and has become a firm staple in my morning routine. With the richness of an oil in a watery base serum this is a complete winner and a great multitasker. If you are short of time this is perfect as won’t need a separate serum or oil unless you want to add them for the joy of it! 

Klairs aren’t a brand I’ve tried before, but rest assured my head has been fully turned! They are widely known throughout Asian Skincare as being a trusted brand that specifically focuses on sensitive skins. Ensuring that their products are free from unnecessary ingredients which can exacerbate skin issues. This ‘Fundamental’ range is all about just that, bringing things back to basics and ensuring your skin has what it needs to glow with health! Don’t be fooled that the formulations are basic though! They most certainly are not as they include some of the best skin loving ingredients around. Klairs philosophy for this range is all about hydrate, repair, protect and boy does this do just that!

This watery drop is seriously dreamy for those of you who have issues using an oil, maybe because you loathe that oil slick feeling, or are concerned about clogged pores. It performs as serum, absorbing deeply into the skin and boosting the effects of other products layered on top but with the added benefits that an oil gives. There is a definite glow to skin following application but not in the same way as what it’s like to look greasy. You won’t get any stickiness or residue with this, just a plump firmer feel to the skin which is immediate.

It is formulated with some of the best ingredients, I got super excited looking at the inci list! Ceramides, Green Tea, Ferment Extracts and Peptides along with Hyaluronic acid provide antioxidant benefits as well as helping repair the skins barrier. Due to the extremely lightweight texture (literally like water) it gives a lovely light layer that would be perfect for all seasons to prevent moisture loss and increase the skins ability to protect itself from the elements. 

I have plans to now try their Ampule Mist as I love a good mist and it sounds a perfect accompaniment to this serum!

Full Ingredients

Aqua(Water), Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Water, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Extract, Bifida Ferment Extract, Betaine, Dipropylene Glycol, Sorbitol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Aspergillus/Rice Ferment Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Sodium Hyaluronate, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Xanthan Gum, Arginine, Carbomer, Tocopheryl Acetate, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Laminaria Japonica Extract, Ceramide NP, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Copper Tripeptide-1, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8


You can buy here from Skinsider for a very generous £30 for 50ml.

Have you tried anything from Klairs? Let me know your favourites!

*PR/gifted


Thank you for reading!


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Monday, 23 September 2019

Amika... more than just about looking cool*




You can’t help but notice Amika. They stand out. Their packaging is probably one of my favourites out there. So fun, so unique. They just make you smile!

But they are more than just about looking cool. They are the definition of cool. Going against industry standards of what they believe ‘perfection’ to look like, they encourage individuality. Understanding that beauty comes in all forms. They describe their products to be like a good friend - straightforward, dependable and fun to be with. This is exactly what I want in hair care and in life, to be honest!

Amika sent me a very special package which included 4 of their products to try. I wasted no time getting to know them. Free from the things I like to avoid in haircare, sulfates, and silicones, I was looking forward to seeing if they would change my hair game for the better. Post-pregnancy hormones have well and truly messed up my hair. It’s falling out left right and centre, I’m shedding like a dog. I was praying for a miracle.

Normcore Signature Shampoo and Conditioner

These are their antioxidant and vitamin-infused signature duo to normalise and balance hair. Hydrated, soft and shiny locks will be yours. I hoped...

Despite the lack of sulfates the shampoo lathers brilliantly thanks to coconut acid. The smell is insane, musky and luxurious.
From the first use I knew they were going to leave my hair soft and manageable. These give a real moisture hit to my bleached mane and work amazingly on frizz.

These are easily one of the best sulfate and silicone-free formulations out there, I would recommend these to people whose hair is in need of a bit of everything. Moisture, frizz management, colour protection, itchy scalp, damage repair. This covers so many bases.

I’ve loved incorporating these into my routine but if by some miracle I’m washing my hair more than twice a week then I don’t use these every time. I find that they can sometimes make my hair feel a little too heavy because they are very nourishing. I have fine hair but lots of it so it is easily weighed down. It’s not a massive complaint if a complaint at all but it’s the reason these don't work amazingly for me.

Next I am looking to try their Vault range which is specifically for coloured hair. The Velveteen Smoothing range also speaks to me...




Soulfood Nourishing Mask

Soulfood indeed...like the Normcore duo this gives hair a heavy moisture hit along with that beautiful musky scent. It leaves hair so silky and soft, dry hair would crave this and my coloured hair is more vibrant when I use this for sure.

The thick pudding-like texture is a joy to smooth into hair and it takes minutes to get to work. I often use a small amount as my regular conditioner and it’s just so effective.

When I get the time I love nothing more than leaving this on for a good while to let my hair marinate in the goodness. It easily washes out leaving that lingering scent making you want to smell your hair every few minutes!
This will definitely be purchased and is easily one of my favourite hair masks I’ve tried.



Perk Up Dry Shampoo

What did we do before dry shampoo?! I know I’m not alone in admitting that my hair mainly survives on it. By day 3 I’m misting this all over my hair like my life depends on it. Rub it into my roots, give my hair a little poof up and I’m good to go! This adds volume and genuinely does ‘perk up’ my hair.

This is one of the best, if not the best formulation of dry shampoo I’ve tried. Completely undetectable it’s talc-free and truly mops up any oil. Not crispy or sticky and definitely not powdery. I recommend this to anyone who will listen!

The standouts in this collection are definitely Soulfood and Perk Up. They will both be purchased for sure. As for the shampoo and conditioner, I really enjoy using them but they aren’t ‘the ones’ for me. I’m still very much on the hunt for a staple shampoo and conditioner that works for my hair in all aspects. I have a feeling they probably lie within one of the Amika ranges, I just need to decide on which!

You can purchase Amika here at BeautyBay. They offer travel sizes as well which is such a great way to try them before buying the full sizes.

*PR/Gifted but all opinions my own.

Have you tried Amika? If so what are your favourites?

Thank you for reading xx
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Monday, 12 August 2019

Samaya Ayurvedic...Discover your Dosha*




Samaya is a brand with a holistic approach to skincare and focuses on Ayurvedic practices. Founded by Abida Halstenberg who grew up in India she was surrounded by Ayurvedic culture. Generations passed down herbal remedies and her grandmother, in particular, inspired her to create her own brand after learning the importance of balance for physical and mental wellbeing. Skincare is a vital part of this process and she was encouraged to take care of her skin using ayurvedic formulations. 

Each of Samaya's skincare ranges are split into the 3 doshas, Pitta, Kapha, and Vata. For years Ayurvedic herbs have been used to balance particular ‘doshas’. Ultimately there is a belief that in order to achieve and maintain balance we should pay attention to our lifestyle as a whole. If your mind, body, and soul are not in harmony then we can see the effects on our health and well-being, externally and internally. That’s where finding out your Dosha type comes in...


(Taken from their website)...
'Dosha is the name given to the energies that govern every individual. There are primarily three types of dosha: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Each type corresponds to a set of physical and emotional traits. Often one dosha dominates, however some individuals find that a combination of two, or in rare cases all three, doshas best defines their character.
When our particular dosha is balanced, our mind, body, and soul are in perfect harmony, which is revealed through healthy, radiant skin. Yet when our dosha is imbalanced, we notice the ill-effects, including on our skin. Being aware of our dosha type means we can make choices to help balance these energies to achieve wellness, peace and calm, all of which contribute to younger-looking, stress-free, beautiful skin'.
Once your dosha is established, Samaya will help select the best skin routine for you. There is a ‘dosha test’ on their website that you fill in which will confirm your dominant dosha. It is in no way to be used to diagnose any medical problems, it’s just a way of discovering your constitution.  

All rather fascinating. I’m not sure I fully believe in Ayurveda as a whole but I am intrigued! Now just for transparency, my skin was being well behaved before I started these products and there were no massive concerns for me other than dullness and lack of radiance which is due to the little Moomin who sleeps (or not) beside me every night! Therefore I wasn’t expecting any dramatic results. I think if you are suffering from noticeable hormone imbalance or acne then it would be more interesting to determine if these products make a difference for that.

Test results said I was ‘Pitta’. I won’t go into all the characteristics of the dosha but when I told my husband it said I was prone to anger and impatience when out of balance he said that sums me right up! Rude. I think it’s fairly spot on when it says that I’d benefit from gentle skincare as I’m prone to sensitivity and inflammation. 

Anyway, from that, I was sent the Anti-Ageing Cream and Treatment Oil which I have been incorporating into my routines for the past couple of months...



Pitta Anti-Aging Cream

This is a wonderfully nourishing cream but without any heaviness or greasiness. It is noticeable when you apply in the sense that it instantly makes skin feel more supple and hydrated. It absorbs brilliantly so works well both AM and PM for me, although I particularly enjoying applying at night then sealing with a face oil, usually the Samaya one.

The scent is herbal as you would imagine but highly sensual. It’s packed with a gorgeous blend of Jasmine, Neem, Lotus, Turmeric, Saffron, Shatavari and Gotu Kola. These all have massive benefits for the skin, mainly anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and healing properties which I love my skincare to have.

I feel pleasure when I use this cream and for me that is such an important part of using skincare. My skin is comfortable and happy when using this and that’s exactly what I want.

Ingredients
Aqua, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Almond) Oil, Glycerin, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetearyl Olivate, Caprylic / Capric Triglycerides*, Glyceryl Caprylate, Ribose, Sorbitan Olivate, Jasminum Officinalis (Jasmine) Flower Extract, Melia Azadirachta (Neem) Seed Oil*, Nelumbo Nucifera (Lotus) Seed Extract, Crocus Sativus (Saffron) Extract, Asparagus Racemosus (Shatavari) Herb Oil, Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola) Leaf Extract, Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Root Oil, Santalum Spicata (Sandalwood) Oil, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe) Leaf Juice Powder*, Mel (Honey)*, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil*, Tanacetum Parthenium (Feverfew) Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Lysolecithin, Squalane, Sclerotium Gum, Xanthan Gum, Pullulan, Phytic Acid, Sodium Levulinate, Sodium Anisate, Benzyl Alcohol+, Benzyl Benzoate+, Eugenol+, Farnesol+

* Organic
+ Naturally Occurs In Essential Oils

Pitta Anti-Aging Treatment Oil

I struggle with oils, they are always a risk for me. Congestion is often the issue I have if I use one that doesn’t agree with me. But I adore them and I love finding new ones that work for my skin. This is one of them.
It is super-rich and luxurious. It smells pretty much as same as the cream as it includes similar ingredients in more concentrated form.

Only a small amount is required to make a difference. I would say this does an amazing job at balancing oil production and intensely nourishing the skin at the same time. I’ve found that this helps remedy any unhappy spots whether that be dry patches or blemishes. The healing process is accelerated. This oil isn’t greasy and absorbs wonderfully despite quite a heavy/thick texture. 

Again I feel this relaxes and calms me when I use, I love to inhale and focus on breathing. 

Ingredients
Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Caprylic/capric Triglycerides, Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Oil*, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Almond) Oil, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Squalane, Jasminum Officinalis (Jasmine) Flower Extract, Melia Azadirachta (Neem) Seed Oil*, Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Root Oil, Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola) Leaf Extract, Asparagus Racemosus (Shatavari) Herb Extract, Crocus Sativus (Saffron) Extract, Nelumbo Nucifera (Lotus) Seed Extract, Santalum Spicata (Sandalwood) Oil, Aloe Barbadenis (Aloe) Leaf Extract, Tanacetum Parthenium (Feverfew) Extract, Spilanthes Acmella (Paracress) Flower Extract, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Benzyl Benzoate+, Linalool+, Eugenol+

* Organic. + Naturally Occurs In Essential Oils.

These products have become the ones I turn to when I want a complete sensory experience. They are not inexpensive by any means so these are an investment. But if you are looking for not only effectiveness but also an experience then these could be for you.

The anti-aging cream is £89 and the oil is £79 from here.
*PR/gifted

Thanks for reading xx
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