Look Fantastic May 2020

My first Lookfantastic box arrived in May, with six treats to try out. Lookfantastic ships every month and I’m told it is usually skincare focused which is great for trying out new brands. I’ve got to admit I bought this really for the Avant moisturiser which I’ve had before in another beauty box. It’s really good value at £15 per month (there are lots of plans available to make it slightly cheaper per month if you wanted to)

Magnitone Cloth £10

First up is this Magnitone cloth which is so soft and is designed to remove makeup with just water. I’ve seen a few of these around and not got around to trying one so I was really pleased to get one in here! It really does get makeup off with only water and they wash really nice afterward in the machine. Definitely will be repurchasing some more to use everyday.

DR Lipp Moisturising Lip Tint in Sweet Potato £3

This super cute mini lip tint is really a balm, perfect for dry or chapped lips. I personally didn’t see much in the way of a tint but it was nice for hydrating and moisturising. I used this up pretty quickly as it was very small but it was a really nice product.

Eyeko Brow Gel Mini £10

This was a surprise favourite for me in this box! I’m not a massive fan of brow gel and usually only use it when I’m going out out to keep everything in place. This has a great tint to the formula, a nice brown hint not too dark and doesn’t give you any flakiness or stiffness. This is definitely been repurchased by me as it just adds some definition to your brows with minimal effort. The full size of this is £18.

Avant Hyaluronic Acid Resurfacing Duo Moisturiser £100

The star product of the box and worth £100! This Avant Hyaluronic acid Moisturiser is a fave of mine. It’s a really rich formula and it works to brighten and create a more youthful complexion. I got this in another beauty box and it was my primary reason for purchasing this one, it’s such a good cream and works for sensitive skin .

Korres Hydra-biome Probiotic Facemask £9.40

I hadn’t heard of this brand before and was interested to try this face mask which uses Greek yoghurt and probiotics. It’s a really thick texture and I used it after being out in the sun to cool and hydrate my skin. It left my skin feeling so smooth and soft and I would definitely recommend for a pampering.

Balance Me Hyaluronic Plumping Mist £10

This is the one product that I haven’t used a great deal. It’s a facial mist designed to replace the toner in your skincare routine or can be used to refresh yourself face throughout the day. I found this was too much for my skin and caused some breakouts when I tried it so it’s not for me unfortunately. It’s a lovely light mist and might work better for other skin types.

In total the box contents were £142.40! £100 of that is the value of the Avant cream. Making it really good value and some fab products to explore for your skin. To find out more about Lookfantastic just visit their webpage to explore the different plans available for their beauty box.

Would love to hear in the comments if you’ve tried any of these products and what you thought of them.

Love the skin you’re in

It’s ok to love your body just the way it is.

Sounds simple right? But it’s something I’ve struggled with pretty much since being a teenager. Over the last few years I’ve been on a mission to accept myself flaws and all, not always an easy thing especially when you are dealing with psoriasis and all of the perils of autoimmune disease. After all Psoriasis is so much more than just what you see.

I’ve become braver in speaking out about my psoriasis, something I was so ashamed of and never liked to draw attention to. But slowly I’ve become a little more confident, and unashamed to wear a T-shirt and bear my flared skin or wear a skirt without also thinking I have to wear thick tights to cover up. I’ve seen days in the height of summer when I’d wear a cardigan just so people wouldn’t see my skin.

Seems crazy when I think about it now but it took a long time for me to accept that I was never going to be “cured” and this was a condition I’d just learn to manage.

There’s no miracle cream that’s going to make it go away. There’s no tablet or injection that makes the fatigue and joint pain disappear, you just get good at managing with a combination of all of the above treatments. And a lot of family support. 💜

The difference within months can be dramatic at times

I am delighted to be part of the @_restingitchface #FlawedButBeautiful project encouraging people with long term conditions to know their worth and accept themselves. Because we all deserve to be happy.

There’s some amazing stories and people over on Instagram as part of the project so please do check them out. Psoriasis Association has lots of resources for anyone needing support.

I rarely discuss my specific treatment as I believe it’s important to work with a dermatologist but I do share moisturising creams and alternative therapies which have worked for me.

If you’re struggling with diagnosis or just want some perspective from someone who’s been through most of the treatments available via the NHS do get in touch.

Wild thing! Glossybox May 2020

If like me you’ve been sucked into the Tiger King docuseries on Netflix you’ll know that this beauty box could have been designed with Carole Baskin in mind! There’s been lots of change during the past 7 weeks but I’m so thankful that some of the little things that can brighten your day have been able to continue like Glossybox. For May their theme is exploring your wild side, with two special edition boxes in Leopard and Zebra print and a range of makeup, haircare and skincare to try out!

If you don’t know about Glossybox, it’s a beauty box subscription where you are sent 5 items each month. You can subscribe for various amounts of time or purchase a one-off box.

I pay £11.75 per month for my Glossybox including shipping but there are lots of plans available on their website www.glossybox.co.uk from 1-12 month plans or one off boxes.

Stargazer Glitter Eye Pencil RRP £2

First up was the Stargazer Glitter eyeliner pencil. The colour I was sent was violet which is a really bold colour with a bit of glitter scattered in. I really wasn’t sure about this as it felt a bit like something I would have tried when I was about 12. However! I did line my eyes with it and completely changed my mind, it was a lovely colour, not as bold when applied, but blends out nicely and I think with the right eyeshadow will look really nice. I’ve also seen a few people applying theirs over black eyeliner for a subtle glitter look and I do think that’s something I will try.

Vitamasques Bamboo Charcoal sheet mask RRP £3.99

So in a change to the advertised product, we were meant to get an OhK! Printed mask,my box contained a Vitamasques Bamboo Charcoal Sheet Mask. I’m guessing this might have something to do with the current pandemic situation and to be honest I don’t mind. The mask contains a detoxifying and pore tightening action to banish breakouts and eliminate excess oils according to their website.

It Is designed for stressed out skin and, lets face it, I think we’ve all experienced some stress the past 7 weeks!

I used this at the weekend and I really enjoyed it. I left it on for the full 20 mins (recommended between 10 and 20 mins to leave on) and my skin felt amazing. Usually when I use face masks like these I feel like the serum it’s coated in is dripping all over and this wasn’t , to me it was almost a gel style which meant it wasn’t sliding off all the time. Would definitely purchase this again as I think for £3.99 it’s a bargain.

Mudmasky Hair Mask, Scalp treatment and Miracle Shampoo RRP £21

Next is the Mudmasky Hair mask, Scalp treatment and Miracle Shampoo to help with dry, damaged and frizzy hair. Let’s see I check all of the above ! And given that my hair hasn’t seen a hairdresser since February, I was due an appointment the day of lockdown, I was excited to try this.

I am pleased to say it doesn’t disappoint. You apply like regular shampoo, leather and then leave it on your scalp for a minute before rinsing. It contains Moroccan argan oil, Moroccan mud and claims to strengthen and repair your hair. I could really feel a difference after the treatment and as someone with a sensitive scalp due to my psoriasis I was really pleased with this product.

Steve Laurent Eyeshadow Palette RRP £31

The star product of this box, which was the sneak peek last month, is the Steve Laurent eyeshadow palette which came in a cute leopard print box. The palette is a really good mix of neutrals with nine shades in all. With mattes and shimmers I think there will be a lot of use for me from this as you can do everything from day to night looks. The shades blend out nicely and the pigment is good.

The last item is an EOS lip balm in Sweet Mint. We did get a lip balm in last months box but I really don’t mind getting another one as I use these a lot! This smells amazing and the mint is not overpowering. A nice basic to have and use regularly.

The contents of this months box are worth £64.49 , so definitely worth the monthly subscription fee! So lastly on to the sneak peek for the June box! This was pretty exciting as it’s a Huda Beauty dual ended eyeliner with a liquid liner on one side and pencil on the other. This is worth £18 and fits with the theme of beauty beyond borders so an international beauty theme. Very much looking forward to this !

June’s sneak peek

If you want to sign up to Glossybox you can visit their website http://www.glossybox.co.uk or you can use my referral link here and receive a discount of 20% on your first box.

Hope you enjoyed reading about this months box, would love to know if you’ve tried any of the products from this month !

Asos Hydration Station Beauty Box

A little later than normal as I’ve been juggling lots with trying to homeschool as are a lot of people! If you’ve not had an ASOS Face + Beauty Box they are released at the beginning of each month, no subscription, just £12 per box. The boxes have a general theme each month, for April, it was all about hydration and refreshing your skin for Spring!

With a great range of products from serums, cleanser, eye masks and moisturiser I’m looking forward to trying the products and seeing what they can do for my skin.

First we have the STYLPRO Hydrating Jelly Cleanser, a vegan product, to remove makeup and keep your skin moisturised. This even came with a fab washcloth. I really like this and the washcloth is so soft, works brilliantly and my skin feels great. This is £9.95 to purchase.

Elemis is a fantastic skincare brand but not one I often buy as it can be quite expensive so it felt quite luxe to get this eye mask set. Perfect for a pamper night these were really lovely, I get really dry skin around my eyes and I could really feel the difference with these. These are £52 (!) for a pack of 6. So that makes this pair roughly £17!

Indeed Hydration Booster is £16 from most beauty websites online and is a serum type product for skin that is really dehydrated. You can use this as a stand alone or you can pop a few drops into your usual moisturiser for an extra boost! This is a really lovely product and full size making the box really great value based on this product alone. I preferred using it as a serum at night as that seems to work better for me but it’s really improved the texture of my skin for sure.

Inkey hyaluronic acid Serum is £5.99 and this is designed to be used AM and PM as your first serum following your cleansing routine. The hyaluronic acid acts as an aid to support your other moisturisers to make sure you get maximum benefit from your routine. Another really nice product that I’ve definitely felt the benefit from. My skin has changed quite a bit as I’ve gotten older and because of my psoriasis. So finding a good skincare routine has always been important to me.

The final product in the box was Caudalies Vinosource Moisturizing Sorbet, in a mini size, 15ml which is worth about £8. This is intended to soothe and calm irritated skin with a gel formula and lots of skin soothers like chamomile. I’ve not tried this one yet apart from a quick test patch but it does feel really nice on the skin. It’s intended to be used like a serum.

All in all the April ASOS box was definitely a really great mix of products for anyone looking for a hydration boost. My standout picks from the box would be the cleanser and cloth, Indeed booster and the Inkey serum which I think have made the most difference to my skin.

The box cost £12 and in total the products were worth £56.94 ! Definitely a box worth grabbing and probably the reason it sold out so quickly!

Let me know if you’ve tried any of the products and your views on them

Glossybox April 2020

In the midst of these strange times and pandemic one thing remained the same…. Glossybox!

The Blossom themed April Glossybox

Packed with 5 beauty products with a very spring like feel, this box was the perfect pick me up and definitely brought a smile to my face.

First up in the box is one of the staple items often received in Glossyboxes, a Hask Hair Mask. I really love these masks as my hair gets incredibly dry and frizzy so I go through a lot of conditioning treatments to keep it healthy. Hask is a really affordable brand, one of these masks costs £2.49, and really makes a difference to the look and feel of my hair. Plus this one smells amazing with the peach and rose!

Nails Inc polish in Blossom

I love a good nail polish, especially a pink! Nails Inc is one of my favourite brands for staying power and this formula says it will last up to 10 days. It’s a perfect pink for spring and summer and this has an RRP of £11.

SportFX lip balm in coconut scent

This lip balm reminds me of the eos balms and the coconut smell is gorgeous, kinda reminds me of being on holiday! It’s a really good moisturiser and has an SPF of 15 so perfect for offering some sun protection. This is £4.99 to purchase separately.

Avant Face Exfoliant

The sneak peek from last month was this Avant face exfoliant which retails at £92! Avant is one of my favourite brands for skincare and they have such gentle but effective products. This face exfoliating scrub contains rose and is designed to calm irritation and help improve wrinkles. I’ve really enjoyed using this so far and it’s giving me a great base for applying makeup and has really helped with my skin which has flared due to the stress of the current pandemic.

The final product in my April box was a Rituals shower scrub in a cherry blossom scent. This is perfect for me at the moment as I’m struggling as I mentioned with a flare up of my Psoriasis. Gentle scrubs like this are great for helping get rid of any flaky patches and helping my emoillent creams sink in. Rituals products are one of my favourites and I actually had the body cream in this range for Christmas. This size is deluxe mini and is priced at £4.60. The full sized product is £9.90.

Altogether the products in this box totalled £115.08 ! I have a 12 month subscription with Glossybox which costs me £11.75 per month including postage and packaging. There are lots of subscription plans on their website so you can choose one to suit you!

Next month the sneak peek is an eyeshadow palette from Steve Laurent and looks like a nice range of neutrals.

If you subscribe now you’ll be signing up for the May box while stocks last !

ASOS x Pixi Beauty

I got this beauty box a while back and purposely waited to post a review as I really wanted to give the products a good try and see what difference they made to my skin.

Pixi is a London brand most famous for their skincare and face tonics, the Glow tonic being the most familiar.

The full contents of the box

There are four full size products and one sample size.

The sample size is the most well known and iconic product from the Pixi Range their Glow Tonic. This is the smallest item in the box and I’ve actually used this before. It’s perfect for popping in my travel bag. The tonic itself is amazing for blemish prone skin. I don’t use this everyday as I find it too drying for my skin type but if I feel like my skin has turned oily or I’ve got any spots it’s brilliant for getting them in check sharpish! The recommendation when using Glow Tonic is to use once a day, either morning or night to give your skin a deeper cleanse. The RRP for this size is £5

The Rose tonic is a full size product and my worry with this was that it would be too perfumed. It manages to get a perfect balance of rose scent without being overpowering which I love. It contains hydrosol and can be used morning and night for a calming skin effect. This has now become my everyday toner as it’s lovely and light. The usual price for the full size of this is £18 for the 250ml bottle.

The Rose Flash Balm again not overpowering in scent and a really lovely moisturiser for dry skin. This is designed to be used as either a mask treatment or a primer to brighten up your skin. I’ve really liked using it on no makeup days as a primer, it’s really made my skin feel great and definitely helped throughout the winter months! RRP for this is £6

Next is the Pixi lip lift max in sheer Rose , I really liked this colour and it had a nice non sticky texture. As with most gloss products it’s not particularly long lasting but I would definitely repurchase in another shade.

It has a peptide lip plumper, which you can feel working on your lips from the second you put it on! It’s a really nice formula that doesn’t dry out your lips. The RRP for this product is £12

The last product is the Endless Silky Eye one. It a Kohl type eye pencil there’s not much to say about this, it’s a basic for your makeup bag, applies nicely and lasts well. It’s long wear and has a creamy texture which glides on and smudges nicely if you like that look. This is priced at £6

The box was £15 this time from ASOS but still incredible value as the total value of the products was £47 !

If you’d like to know more about Pixi Beauty and their beauty/ skincare ranges visit pixibeauty.co.uk or any of your usual online beauty retailers

ASOS face and body box January 2020

As January starts I’m all about getting my skin on track and ready for another year. I’d been looking for a new cleanser and came across the ASOS face and body box which this month was a collab with DECIEM and packed with goodies from The Ordinary and NIOD.

I have a combination type typically but lean toward a dry complexion if I am having a Psoriasis flare up and I’m always on the hunt for products that suit my skin but don’t break the bank. Having tried a few things from The Ordinary before for blemishes I was keen to give some of their other products a try and at £15 for this box it seemed like a perfect time to have a try! Side note I actually got my box for £12 as I got a 20% off promotion over New Year from ASOS, making it even better value for money!

Anyway let’s dive into the contents! There are five products altogether to cleanse, hydrate, protect and make your skin glow, definitely a January must!

First up is the Squalane Cleanser, which is part of the reason I wanted the box. It’s designed to remove makeup and keep your skin moisturised. As I lean toward a dry skin type typically this works brilliantly for me, I think if you have oily skin it could be a bit much for you. These type of cleansers are emoillent style and you warm a bit of product in your hands to melt into an oil before rinsing your face with warm water. The RRP for this is £5.50 which is an absolute bargain in my view.

Next up is NIOD Multi-Molecular Hyaluronic Complex (try saying that a few times fast!) Essentially it’s a hydrating serum type product which is aimed at keeping your skin “plump and healthy” as it says on the card. You use this after you cleanse and apply to the whole face. It’s got antibacterial and anti inflammatory properties and is targeted at getting those fine lines and wrinkles in check. As I’m getting older I’m now finding a few fine lines, especially around the eyes so anything that can help is welcomed! It’s a nice light serum and hasn’t made my face feel congested like some other serums have in the past.

I love all the packaging for these products, even though it’s a basic design it kinda reminds me of a lab or something! The RRP for this is £25.

Another product from NIOD included is the Photography Fluid Opacity 12%, described as light-reflecting , hue correcting and topical photo-finishing to create a glowing complexion in seconds. This is a serum type product to put under your base or wear alone and has a similar packaging to the previous serum. It’s got a beautiful opalescent look to it and blends really well. The key ingredient they list in this is “Patented dragonfruit chromatic refractor” for radiance and to help reduce fine lines. It’s a nice formula but I don’t know I’ve seen much difference apart from it being a nice redness reducer and I think I’ll have to use it a bit longer to report back on whether it helps the fine lines!

RRP for this is £20.

Finally the last two products are both from The Ordinary, the Natural Moisturising Factors + HA and Salicylic Acid 2% Masque.

The masque has charcoal and clays to make your skin brighter and smoother and take care of any blemishes. As with a lot of charcoal products this is black in colour and is a rinse off formula which you leave on the skin for about 10 mins before following your regular skin routine. I’d maybe use something like this 1-2 times a week if I was having a breakout or you could just dot on problem areas if you felt the rest of your face wasn’t needing the masque.

RRP is £9.90 for this one.

The moisturising factors is designed to keep your face protected and moisturised and includes that very popular ingredient hyaluronic acid to really plump up the skin. I really like this as it’s light and not greasy but very moisturising, definitely good for a dry complexion, possibly too much for oily skin. At only £4.90 RRP this is a great moisturiser and at a purse friendly price.

Altogether the contents of this months box were worth £65.30 if you’d purchased them all separately.

The ASOS Face and Body box is available each month priced at £15 with a different theme each time. Each box comes with a card describing the products and helping you make best use of them. Just visit http://www.asos.com at the start of the month and search beauty box, make sure you are there early as it very often sells out quickly!

I’ve really enjoyed the products in the box and I will report back on the difference in my skin texture in a few weeks when I’ve had a better chance to see the results.

Holiday essentials

Bring on the good times!

As summer has come to a close and we start into the autumn, it felt like a great time to share some of my summer faves. I actually got away abroad this year for the first time in 3 years so it was great fun thinking of cute outfits and things to take away.

My versatile little bag from River Island

This cute little bag from River Island has served me well over the summer. The perfect size to fit the essentials and casual enough for day but dressy enough for evening. I love the hot pink colour which seemed to be a theme for me this summer!

Loved these earrings that I picked up on sale in Boots for £3!

I love a statement earring and a hoop, so this summer I made the best of both! A pop of neon colour made these the perfect go to for a relaxed look. Plus they were on sale in Boots, not somewhere I usually shop for earrings.

Hask Hair masks have been my saviour!

My hair always gets really dry and frizzy in the summer so it’s so important to me to keep it well conditioned. I love these Hask hair masks, I took 3 away on holiday to counteract the sun and chlorine and they kept my hair feeling soft and my hair colour shiny.

Loving the peachy coral tones this summer
I love peach and orange tones for summer, especially when you have a tan! NYX butter gloss is great for hot days when you need some moisture but also want a good coverage lip colour. Of course my summer essentials wouldn’t be complete without a good bronzer and TooFaced Sweetie Pie is still my number one. It’s a perfect mix of colour and shimmer without an excess of glitter like some bronzers do.

Staying peachy with TooFaced

Finally a good primer is one of my essentials to make sure my face stays in place! I am currently using Obsession Makeup’s mattifying primer which is a silicone based primer. I find these work well for my skin type and it gives a wonderfully matte finish for your foundation to work on.

Primer to keep my face in place

Do you have any great summer essentials to share?

Skin Deep

I’ve suffered with Psoriasis for a long time and so I’ve always been on the look out for products that would be gentle and effective. Skin condition aside I do tend to struggle with real combination skin, the classic oily t-zone and dry in other areas which can be a bit of a nightmare.

Oily skin can be a nightmare for makeup application and I always use a primer to prevent shine as much as possible. This The Ordinary primer is fab for keeping my makeup put and again great for sensitive skin even when I’ve had flare ups on my face it’s never exasperated the problem.

Some skincare favourites

I discovered the Alex Steinherr range at Primark and have really enjoyed the products which are well priced and effective especially the Micellar cleansing gel from the Maximum Moisture range. It’s basically a version of micellar water but in a gel form which is perfect for when my skin is feeling on the dry side.

One of my favourite shower gels is this Westlab Himalayan Salt wash. It’s not as foamy as other gels but it does cleanse nicely and it doesn’t dry my skin out when it’s flared up with psoriasis- bonus it’s only £2.99!

Aveeno and Oilatum are lifesavers when itchy!

My final skincare saviours are Aveeno and Oilatum. I actually use the Aveeno Dermexa Wash in the bath as I find it really effective to soak in. It sits really nicely on the skin and is gentle to sore patches of Psoriasis, the texture is almost like a yoghurt and it has a lovely smell of oats which is the key ingredient in this range to help with itching. It’s not for everyone but it definitely helps me.

Oilatum has been around for a while now and is one of the few liquid paraffin treatments that works well for me in the bath. A good 20 min soak in a warm bath works wonders on making me feel a bit better when I’m having a psoriasis flare, combined with some emoilents like Doublebase it gets me back on track and ready to face the day again!

A mix of favourites to hydrate and revitalise

Having a good set of basics to get you on track is so important, I tend to mix my skincare up depending on whether my psoriasis is flared or not. There’s no point in applying makeup to unprepared skin so I use products which will help with moisture when needed or primers to help with colour correction- this Rimmel CC Primer in Peach was a great find as it works well with my skin tone and texture but helps reduce redness.

I’d love to hear about any skincare favourites you have !