Tuesday, 29 April 2014


I like that the Indie Lee products I’ve tried don’t feel, smell or perform like other natural beauty products, they somehow seem unique. The products are appropriately priced; the ingredients used are pure yet effective and I love the packaging, simple and chic. What I particularly love and admire about the brand is that it began after Indie Lee overcame a brain tumor. Her website tentatively suggests that environmental toxins may have caused her life threatening illness, and so in 2009 Indie admirably channeled her change in fortune into creating “an eco-chic collection of skincare products that combine style and sustainability without sacrifice”. The Blemish Lotion and Squalane Facial Oil have provided my introduction to the brand Indie Lee and so far, so good.

Squalane Facial Oil:  Derived from olives, this Squalane oil is said to improve elasticity, better complexion and boost cell regeneration. As a natural moisturizer, squalane is inherently present in our skin. The percentage however declines as we age so in my opinion, giving our skin a little extra help with a Indie's oil can’t hurt. Appropriate for all skin types, I’ve found this to be much lighter than most other facial oils. It goes on seamlessly and works well under makeup, so I love to use this as my morning moisturizer... If my skin feels in need of a little extra oomph, I sometimes add a serum, but this product can party alone too.

I really like this facial oil primarily because of its unique texture and moisturizing properties. I can’t say I’ve found it to provide miraculous results but I like it a lot and as organic face oils come, it’s not going to break the bank.

Price: £22
Ingredients: 100% Squalane Oil (derived from Olives)

Blemish Lotion: I’m coming to the realization that unfortunately, there’s no quick fix for blemishes. Although it’s not going to make blemishes disappear overnight, Indie Lee’s Blemish Lotion has come the closest to this dream so far. I like the sensation the lotion provides on application, as it feels like it’s cleansing the blemish from within. Noice.

N.B contrary to instinct, don’t shake the bottle but allow the sediment to settle before dipping a cotton bud in the lotion and applying to blemishes. This is not intended for full face or large surface areas.

Price: £18
Ingredients: Purified Water (aqua), Colloidal Sulphur, Zinc Oxide, Salicylic Acid, Magnesium Aliminium Silicate (clay), Camphor, Iron Oxide, Isopropyl Alcohol

Have you tried any Indie Lee products yet? And did you know of the inspiring motivation behind the brand? Indie Lee’s Calendula Eye Balm is next on my wishlist…


Saturday, 26 April 2014


Ren Rosa Centifolia Express Makeup Remover – This Makeup remover is a great size, very handy and portable. It adequately removes makeup and feels gentle, but it has a little trouble with more stubborn products where my go to makeup remover – coconut oil- wouldn’t.

Would I repurchase? No

Price: £13
Ingredients: Rosa Damascena Flower Water, Cetearyl Ethylhexanoate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cetearyl Alcohol, Triheptanoin, Glycerin, Cetearyl Glucoside, Phenoxyethanol, Oryzanol, Sodium Hydroxymethylglycinate, Tocopherol, Carbomer, Xanthan Gum, Citric Acid, Rosa Centifolia Flower Extract.

UNE absolute Black Kohl Eye Pencil – This eye pencil is the blackest of all blacks and lasts amazingly well. For an intense look, this is your pencil but it’s just too dark for me for day.

Would I repurchase? Most definitely! Very impressed.

Price: £5.29

FIGS & ROUGE Mocha Orange Lip tint – I like this. A lovely gentle orange scent without the taste. What makes this lip balm stand out for me is not its conditioning qualities (they’re ok) but its gentle shimmer sheen effect. Not quite a lip balm, not quite a lip gloss and I wouldn’t describe it as a lip tint, this product very gently enhances your natural lips without being too shiny.

Would I repurchase? Maybe… I’ve no real need for it right now.

Price: £5
Ingredients: Ricinus Communis Oil, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Copernicia Cerifera Wax, Parfum, CI 45380, Benzyl Alcohol, Limonene.

JANE IREDALE Glow Time Mineral BB Cream – This was a huge anticlimax for me! The coverage is very good, almost too good for this kind of product. It was difficult to smear over my face and delightfully managed to highlight pores and any sign of dryness along the way. Because the shade was just a little to light for me, I looked like voldermort on holiday: pale and sickly with some serious sunblock. I was so excited to try this product but it didn't work for me at all! On a more positive note, the heavy coverage it provides makes me think the Jane Iredale concealer might be a good one to try.

Would I repurchase? No way, but I’m considering the concealer…

Price: £40
Ingredients: Active Ingredient: Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891) 20% Ingredients: Aqua/Water/Eau, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethicone, Stearoxymethicone/Dimethicone Copolymer, Maltodextrin, Camellia Sinensis (White Tea) Leaf Extract, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Citrus Paradisi (Grapefruit) Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Amara (Bitter Orange) Fruit Extract, PEG-10 Dimethicone, Glycerin, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Pectin, Chlorella Vulgaris/Lupinus Albus Protein Ferment, Sodium Ascorbate, Tocopherol, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Raphanus Sativus (Radish) Root Extract, Lecithin, Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract (and) Lonicera Japonica (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Aluminum Hydroxide, Xanthan Gum, May Contain: Iron Oxides (CI 77489, CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), Chromium Oxide Greens (CI 77288).

Sante Shower Gel in Coconut Dream and Goji Power – I didn’t enjoy the scent of these gels because they smelt like the kind of sweets that might be found right at the back of the cupboard with an archaic expiry date because no one dares to touch them. However, they cleaned gently but well and left me feeling fresh and somehow slightly moisturized.

Would I repurchase? No, because of the sickly scent.

Price: £6
Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Coco Glucoside, Lauryl Glucoside, Sodium Coco Sulfate, Aloe Barbadensis*, Glycerin, Glyceryl Oleate, Inulin, Sorbitol, Citric Acid, Parfum (Essential Oils), Polyglyceryl -10 Laurate, Betaine, Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Disodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Ananas Sativus (Pineapple) Fruit Extract*, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Fruit Extract* / Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Schizandra Chinensis Fruit Extract, Levulinic Acid, p-Anisic Acid, Phytic Acid, PCA Ethyl Cocoyl Arginat


Thursday, 24 April 2014


As far as I’ve experienced, Dr Hauschka is a brand that delivers reliable quality with trustworthy ingredients. I’ve never been disappointed by any of their products and this one is no exception… but it didn’t blow me away either.

The concealer has a thick yet creamy consistency and is quick and easy to apply. I find it adequately moisturizing around the eyes but the real gem is when it’s used to cover blemishes. Although I don’t find that it cures spots, it certainly doesn’t aggravate them and I would suggest that my experience with the stick supports their claims that the active ingredients of tea tree, calendula and manuca oils “help blemishes disappear fast”, or at least faster.

It covers blemishes moderately well (I could always do with a little extra help!) and while it doesn’t cover as much as I’d perhaps like, I do feel like the product lasts. I got the shade sand 03 and while I have a tendency to think I’m more tanned than I am (wishful thinking) this seems to be ok. If I were to repurchase I’d probably go for 02, however I probably won’t.

Price: £18
Ingredients: Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Manihot Utilissima (Tapioca) Starch, Ricinus Communis (Castor Seed) Oil, Cera Flava, Lanolin, Elaeis Guineenis (Palm) Oil, Candelilla Cera (Euphorbia Cerifolia Wax), Cera Carnauba (Copernicia Cerifera Wax), Rosa Gallica (French Rose) Flower Extract, Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Extract, Perfume, Limonene (component of natural essential oils), Linalool (component of natural essential oils), Geraniol (component of natural essential oils), Citral (component of natural essential oils), Anthylis Vulneraria Extract (component of natural essential oils), Calendula (Calendula Officinalis) Flower Extract (component of natural essential oils), Prunus Armeniaca Kernel Oil, Tocopherol (Natural Vitamin E), Melaleuca Altemifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Oil, Leptospermum Scoparium Oil, Ascorbyl Dipalmitate, CI 77491 (Iron Oxides), CI 77492 (Iron Oxide Yellow), CI 77499, CI 77899, CI 77707, CI 77947

This is a high quality product with great ingredients but I don’t think its performance is mind blowingly amazing.Have you tried the Dr Hauschka concealer? And I'd be grateful for any suggestions on natural concealers with serious coverage?


Tuesday, 22 April 2014


Argan Oil 

This did not initially wow me but it’s actually a great all rounder. I bought it for my hair but in a surprise twist, I’ve found myself using it more and more for skincare.

When it is treating my locks, I just put a couple of drops into my hand, rub my palms together then run it through/over dry ends. Don’t use too much with this or you’ll end up looking like the girl from the ring. I also occasionally use it on damp hair after I’ve shampooed to improve its condition, but the former is my preferred method.

With regards to skincare it’s fairly straightforward. Apply however much (usually a couple of drops) onto skin. In particular, I’ve found it to be a great morning moisturizer as it sinks right into my skin so there’s very little waiting time before I apply my makeup.

Argan Oil is said to improve moisture retention, skin and hair elasticity, tame frizzy hair and split ends as well as improve complexion by reducing the appearance of fine lines and blemishes. What I particularly like about the John Masters Argan oil is that it’s 100% organic and that it supports the local women’s cooperative in Morocco that harvests the Argan. There are however, cheaper options out there.

Price: £30
Ingredients: Argania Spinosa (argan) Oil 100% Organic

Shine On

I can’t see myself repurchasing this one. I like it (or at least it’s inoffensive), but I can’t work out exactly what it’s for or how to use it! ‘Shine’ I suppose, but it doesn’t seem to particularly excel in this department when compared with other products. Softness? It does make my hair feel lovely and soft but there are other, cheaper products that also do this. Manageability perhaps, but I have no evidence to suggest that this is the case… It’s all a bit of a mystery.

It’s described as a leave-in hair treatment that forgoes the synthetic silicones so often found in hair care products. Instead, organic kelp smooths and softens (this is where the shine should come in), marine phytoplankton improves moisture retention, calendula provides a little TLC for the scalp while fagus sylvatica extract and carrot seed oil provide keratin, moisture, carotene and vitamin A… This is the kind of stuff I love to hear a product promise (hence the purchase), but I think there are probably similar but cheaper products that provide similar benefits – a simple conditioner springs to mind.

At the moment I just apply it to the ends of damp hair then run my tangle teaser through it… I feel like I’m missing a trick so if anyone has any experience with this product, I’d love a few pointers!

Price: £25
Ingredients: Aloe barbadensis (aloe vera leaf juice) gel,* aqua (water), glycerin, guar gum,* sodium alginate, daucus carota sativa (carrot) seed oil,* olea europaea (olive) oil,* calendula officinalis (calendula) extract,* anthemis nobilis (chamomile) extract,* xanthane gum, methylcellulose gum, macrocystis pyrifera (kelp) extract,* marine phytoplankton, fagus sylvatica (beech) extract*. * NOP Certified Organic

I love the John Masters ethos and the top quality of his products. I want to delve a little further into his range, perhaps try the Green Tea and Calendula leave in conditioning mist or the Lavender and avocado intensive conditioner. Any recommendations?


Friday, 18 April 2014


The skin is one of the largest organs and yet I personally neglect a large percentage of it when it comes to skincare (time spent on my face to body ratio is heavily skewed). Since I heard about this phenomenon I’ve incorporated it into my morning routine and the results are impressive. Anyone I’ve ever known will testify that I’m not a morning person but I’ve found a quick dry brush before my morning shower leaves me feeling a lot more alert, and somehow warmer (weirdly, I’ve realized I’m a very cold person in the morning… must be something to do with my rubbish circulation). 

Dry brushing is invigorating, good for health and offers some great beauty benefits. And with the summer about to commence , now’s a great time to give it a try as we get ready to bare our skin! Here are 6 very appealing benefits…

  1. Stimulates Lymphatic System:Dry brushing offers the ultimate detoxification via lymphatic drainage, resulting in a happier immune system and body in general.
  2. Exfoliation:A quick and easy way to remove dead, dry skin cells, allowing skin to breathe. It improves the rate of cell renewal and the overall appearance of skin - just make sure you shower after you’ve brushed all those dry skin cells off.
  3. Increased Circulation:Another great way to detoxify the body, tighten skin, invigorate and improve overall health.
  4. Reduces Cellulite:Dry brushing is said to remove toxins and helps break down stubborn fat deposits, redistributing them more evenly, resulting in the reduced appearance of cellulite.
  5. Stress Relief:In the same way self massage works, dry brushing can be meditative, reducing muscle tension and calming the mind, therefore offering stress relief.
  6. Regulates Digestion, Kidney Function and Hormones:Dry brushing offers very gentle internal massage, stimulating glands responsible for hormone production and improving the function of your inner organs. If the skin can’t breathe, it relies on organs such as the liver and kidneys to compensate, which may result in too much stress being put on said organs. It’s therefore important to unclog pores and allow skin to be fully functional in maintaining the body’s equilibrium.

How to:
On dry skin, starting at your ankles, take your body brush in long sweeping motions towards your heart. Do the same with arms, stomach, shoulders and voila. So simple, there’s no excuse not to try it!

So overall dry brushing offers a cheap and easy way to improve the appearance of skin as well as detoxify the whole body. Have you tried dry brushing? If you haven’t yet, maybe now’s the time to try it out before the summer starts…