Wednesday, 22 April 2020

My Quarantine Skincare Situation

*Disclaimer* This post contains gifted items. Products denoted with a '*' have been gifted. I was NOT paid to write about them and under no obligation to do so. All views and opinions are my own. 

You'd be forgiven for thinking that when I packed up to come to my mum's I just stuck out my arm and swept everything off my dressing table into a bag, because that's pretty much what I did. However, there was a method to my madness, for amongst this motley crew of products are some real gems, from tried and tested favourites to some newbies I packed just to test out, it's all here.

Now before we get into this I should say most of these products are on the spendier side. Most of them were gifted - this smacks of privilege, I know - and I didn't realise quite how expensive some of these products were before I put this post together. Eeek. Sorry about that, guys.

Elemis Pro-Collagen Rose Cleansing Balm* (£43) - An oldie but a goodie, the Elemis Cleansing Balm, both the rose and OG versions, is one of my desert island products, meaning that were I trapped on a desert island, I'd want a never ending tub of this stuff with me, you understand the concept. Also let me know if that's something you'd like to see, because I ain't got nothing but time babes, but I digress. 

A delicious balm cleanser, the Elemis Pro-Collagen Rose Cleansing Balm boasts a luxuriously rich texture that transforms into an oil when worked into the skin and emulsifies into a milk after interacting with water. It melts all signs of make up and dissolves dirt and other impurities, leaving the skin clean, pampered, soft and glowing. It also smells incredible. I'm always a bit funny when it comes to rose scented products as more often than not rose scents tend to be quite heady and old lady-ish, but this is fresh and clean. Lovely. 

Skin Regimen 10.0 Tulsi Booster* (£76) - Guys, I did not realise quite how expensive this oil was when I first planned this post. Yikes. £76 is a lot of money for a facial oil, no matter how nice it is. Having said that, this is really nice. Just not sure if it's £76 nice... eeeep...

Skin Regimen is an Italian skincare brand that specialises in vegan and cruelty free products that protect the skin from modern life. I was lucky enough to attend the brand launch in 2018 and the 10.0 Tulsi Booster was one of the products in the gift bag. A nourishing facial oil, aimed at drier skins, the Tulsi Booster targets dehydration and free radical damage, promising a more healthy and radiant complexion. It is enriched with Tulsi, a kind of basil, that is used in Ayurvedic medicine as an antioxidant and sweet almond oil to nourish.

I've been using it as part of my evening skincare routine - holla if you wanna see that - for a while now and have seen a noticeable improvement in the texture of my skin, which tends to be on the scalier side of dry if left unchecked. I know, I know, so sexy. Now it looks almost juicy from the hydration and the glow is real. Thinking about it, I do really like this. Maybe it is £76 nice after all. 

Soleil Toujours SPF 30 Mineral Sunscreen Glow (£36) - Now we all know I'm a self-confessed SPF fiend. There are few skincare products I love more than a good SPF, it's crucial in my mission to never ever look my age, and this is one of the best I've come across. Not quite as good as The Body Shop's Skin Defence, which is my ultimate favourite, but it's definitely up there.

If I'm remembering correctly, and I think I am, then this was one of the products in Caroline Hirons' Clean Decoded box that she did with Space NK a couple of years ago, which was amazing. Anywho, this particular product  had remained unused in my beauty drawers, until last summer when I found myself low on SPF, which never happens.

Descibed as a 'summer skin saviour', which I agree with, Soleil Toujours is a tinted SPF that delivers both broad spectrum protection (THE BEST KIND) and a luminous, skin-perfecting glow, which I love. The formulation is lightweight, another Lauren buzzword, and contains zinc oxide to protect from sun damage, while aloe leaf juice softens and soothes and extract of mugwort plant reduces redness and irritation. It also contains light-reflecting particles that give the skin a natural-looking sun-kissed glow. It really is fantastic. 

Elemis Pro-Collagen Eye Revive Mask*(£55) - The newest addition to Elemis' cult Pro-Collagen range the Eye Revive Mask is an eye gel that has been described as the 'future of eye care'. It's already become a firm favourite of mine, partly because of  its light refreshing texture and partly because of my refusal to be faithful to any skincare product.

The mask is a multi-use product and can be used as an eye primer in the mornings before make up or as an anti-ageing eye mask at night, it can even be used throughout the day to ease tension and refresh/soothe the eyes, a God send in these puffy-eyed hayfever-y times.

It's designed to intensely hydrate and target the signs of ageing, and contains antioxidant rich watermelon snow algae and bush clover to hydrate and reduce the appearance of puffiness and dark circles.

Elemis Superfood Vital Veggie Mask* (£30) - A long term love of mine, the Elemis Superfood Vital Veggie Mask is one of my all time favourite products. It's on that desert island with me and the Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm - sidenote: this post is NOT sponsored by Elemis, I'm just a really big fan! Since it launched last year, watch my vlog here,  this innovative clay mask has played a solid part in my weekly skincare routine.

The mask, inspired by green smoothies, is packed full of nutrient dense 'supergreen' ingredients, such as avocado oil, broccoli seed oil, nettle juice, kale extract and wheatgrass extract to hydrate, while passionfruit acid gently dissolves dead skin cells, leaving the skin smooth and bright.

The thing that makes this mask - and the Berry Blast mask, which I also love - so special, is its texture. Somehow, and I don't know how but I can only assume witchcraft is involved, Elemis have created a clay mask, which by their very nature tend to be really drying, with the texture of an ultra rich moisturiser. I told you, witchcraft. 

CeraVe SA Smoothing Cleanser (£13) - The latest addition to my skincare collection and one of the last products I bought in an actual shop before we went into lockdown, CeraVe's SA Smoothing Cleanser is a gel cleanser, similar to Pixi's Glow Tonic Cleansing Gel, that gently cleases and exoliates the skin.

The cleanser is formulated with a 0.5% concentration of Salicylic acid, which acts as a chemical exfoliant; dissolving dead skin cells and other impurities, for smoother looking skin, while Hyaluronic Acid hydrates. It also features an exlusive combination of ceramides, a type of lipid responsible for drawing moisture in to the skin, while blocking irritants, preventing dry and dehydrated skin. In addition, the formula is vegan and cruelty-free, and non-comedogenic, which means it doesn't cause breakouts

I tend to use this first thing in the morning, and after my Elemis Balm Cleanser in the evenings as part of a double cleanse, thanks Caroline Hirons, as its really light and refreshing; 

Aveeno Skin Relief Moisturising Lotion (£4.66) - One of my March Favourites, the Aveeno Skin Relief Moisturising Lotion has been an absolute God send for my poor abused hands. For those of you new to my small corner of the internet, first of all welcome, get cosy, secondly: I have OCD, with one of my compulsions  being hand washing, usually in very hot water. So you can imagine just how much I've been washing my hands lately. Before all this kicked off my hands were in a sorry state anyway. Now, they're next level: dry, cracked and bleeding. Or should I say were, because this bad boy has worked some kind of miracle on my overwashed paws.

Designed for very dry skin, ahem, Skin Relief is very light and fast absorbing, which is amazing because I HATE overly thick and greasy hand creams that take forever to absorb. Just... no! Anyway, Skin Relief is formulated with shea butter and a pre-biotic triple oat complex, which helps to restore the balance of the skin's microbiome, leaving skin restored and healthy-looking. I can't stress how good its been for my poor hands, I've been recommending it to everyone.

Tata Harper Hydrating Floral Mask* (£83) - Guys, if you've made it this far I can only thank you, this has been longer and ramblier than I was anticipating. Last but not least we have the Tata Harper Hydrating Floral Mask, the one product on this extensive list I haven't tried properly yet. Once again this was gifted when I was lucky enough to go to a Tata Harper launch party last year, it was every bit as amazing as you'd think it was. We got to create our own facial mists, but I've gotten off track.

Designed to quench thirsty skin, the Hydrating Floral Mask promises to plump, hydrate and recharge dry skin, as well as soothe redness and even skin tone. It's made from naturally-derived ingredients and hyaluronic acid to deliver a high dose of hydration into the skin. I'll have to let you know if it actually works or not but going from the reviews I've seen I'm guessing it's pretty good.

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