Firstly, I’ve got three things I would like to say; 1.) Howdy, I know it’s been a while but… 2.) A lovely reader named Melissa (shoutout and many thanks!) is someone who I’ve corresponded with over the past few weeks who managed to- virtually!- kick me up the butt which made me… 3.) Realise how much I’ve missed putting fingers to keys and type away.
So, we shall not mention the ridiculous amount of months I’ve been away. Five. Oops. On the bright side, because there’s always one, isn’t it?, I have had a chance to really get down to the nitty gritty and trial a heap of products that I’ve had my eyes on. With that blurb under way, lets get straight into some of the good uns’ I’ve been discovering, rediscovering and quite frankly also emptying- can I have a ‘woop-woop’?
I am certain that I’m far from alone in feeling the early effects of a decreasing temperature. It’s the same story every year; during the summer months your t-zone is doing a fine job by oiling itself up quicker than a new baseball glove and just as you start to feel confident in tackling daily rounds of blotting and touch ups, the wind changes. Literally. And with the cold air follows narry’ hands, frizzy hair and your t-zone’s suddenly dried up like a raisin and started flaking off. Yuuuk, you say? Oh yes, ‘yuk’ indeed but fret not as I have crafted together this nifty little edit of some of my current favourites to tackle the transitional month of September. These products will help calm everything right down again, creating a sparkling canvas for the new season ahead.
First up we have Quick-Fix Facials Brightening Peel Mask (£4.99), which squeezes out of the tube as a clear gel. At first glance it may not look like much and I have often found that radiance-inducing masks are over-hyped. The Brightening Peel mask on the other hand works wonders at boosting the skin with a natural glow, not to mention evened out my sun(over)exposed complexion. A thin layer is recommended as the gel spreads easily but the mask sets quickly so is best applied using fingers in long, sweeping motions. Although it is a ‘peel’ mask, the thin and clear layer leaves nowhere near a grim residue but I still prefer to towel it off with a hot flannel. The tube claims to contain a generous 10x applications but a little goes a long way as I’m about halfway through with 8+ uses- bonus!
The skincare boosters in Sarah Chapman’s ‘Skinesis’ range are two products right up on my skincare hall of fame. Both my No.1 Intense Hydrating Booster (£57), and the No.3 Overnight Exfoliating Booster (£57), are on their last legs and well overdue a repurchase. If you need to lock in some extra moisture in the morning the ‘Intense Hydrating’ serum is wonderful and sits well under makeup whereas if your skin is looking a tad lacklustre come evening time the ‘Overnight Exfoliating’ will keep your skin anti-smog, clear and revived when used 3x weekly. The price is pretty steep- I know, I know, understatement of 2014!- which consequently means that although they are on the top of my products-to-restock-promptly list, it will take some time before a new pair is sitting pretty on my shelf. Until then, I’ll be inspecting my close-up daily and watch those pesky little hard bumps reappear for the first time in six months, one by one, under a layer of dull skin… R.I.P
The Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer SPF15 (£52) is your hero product come morning. It does not matter if your skin is weather-worn by rain or sunshine, whether you’re trying to stop the BB-cream that went on like a dream during summertime from creasing and settling into your newly returned under-eye crepiness or making the office-makeup base stay put until evening drinks- The Veil Mineral Primer is your new BFF.
For night time I have been following the 1-2 times weekly mask and 2-3 times weekly exfoliating booster with the Super Facialist by Una Brennan Vitamin C+ Brighten Overnight Repair Radiance Capsules (£21.99) – Try saying that three times fast – to replace my usual night cream every. single. night. Vitamin C is one of the most common ingredients that tend to degrade when in contact with air and sunlight. The capsules are in a stable form and although on the pricer side, they’re still about a 1/3 off most brands with a similar product range. On top of that, they are available for another 1/3 of their own price in TK Maxx from time to time reducing the Overnight Repair Radiance Capsules to a measly £7.99- I thoroughly suggest you have a browse for them next time you pop in store. Saying that, the active form of Vitamin C can be quite harsh and although they feel rather soothing on my tolerant skin I have read reviews and recommendations that the more sensitive skin types take care to do a patch test before use. The capsules are single-dose and spread easily over the skin, especially when pre-warmed by fingertips. The capsule’s content can also be concentrated on areas affected by hyper-pigmentation and sunexposure with the ease of the velvety veil-like consistency of the serum. In fact, it feel very similar to the Hourglass Mineral Veil Primer in how it doesn’t sit on top of the skin, yet you cannot feel it sinking in- leaving a weightless, smooth and matte but not lacklustre finish that makes your skin look well rested and more even over time.
Elisabeth Arden Eight-Hour Cream (£26), the ‘Skin Protectant’ version is a real cult-buy in form of a love-it-or-hate-it product. I for one, absolutely love it. If there is one part of my body that I cannot seem to feel comfortable with; it’s my hands. In the winter they get crazy-dry and strongly resemble what I can only describe as a dragon’s flaky skin and although next to every single other hand cream on the market- Yup, I’ve most likely tried them all!- seem to lose their mojo; the Eight-Hour Cream never fails to deliver on its nourishing and revitalising goodness. It is expensive but I repeat, a little goes a long way and it is a true multitasker whilst soothing everything from minor skin irritations caused by sun- and wind- burn, rough skin and cuticles to healing of chapped lips and flaky patches around the nose where I’ve left the Skin Protectant on overnight. I even adore the slightly medicated scent of the emollient.
Last but not least is the It’s a 10! Miracle Leave-In PLUS Keratin (£18.99) which I had been after for the longest of times before I finally got my hands on it in May, here. It softens, de-frizzes and detangles which has been needed more than ever as my natural hair’s been growing out strongly and my bleached and over-processed ends are knotting up in response. The Keratin in the new formula helps to strengthen and rebuild the hair by replacing lost lipids in the shaft. Does it actually work? In my honest opinion, the fact that my hair is far healthier post- than pre-summer is the only result I could possibly want.
Which products take your skin, hair and body safely into next season- all whilst glowing more than yesterday? xo.