Over the last few months I’ve been trialling a hair treatment from a small hair care company called Old Wives Tail. Old Wives Tail specialise in luxury organic hair treatments, all of which are handmade, vegetarian and vegan, and free of gluten, parabens and sulfates. They’re also animal friendly and aim to eradicate animal testing in the beauty industry, so 10% of their profits go to charities which save animals from being tested on.
The treatment I’ve been using is the Jojoba and Clove Organic Oil Treatment, which retails for £13.99 for a 100ml jar. The treatment is described as a ‘hydrating, natural and balancing hair treatment for dull, thinning, brittle or broken hair’. My hair is quite unusual in that, though it can get quite oily at the roots, the ends get very dry and split easily, especially during colder months, and the overall look is very limp, lifeless and damaged. I opted for this particular treatment as, according to the Old Wives Tail website, ‘jojoba oil gets to work at penetrating every hair follicle to add strength, volume and texture to weak, lifeless hair’, which is just what I want.
The treatment has a very strong aroma of cloves, which hits you as soon as you open the jar, but it isn’t too overpowering as it is offset with a slight sweetness. It’s also quite a dense treatment, with a slightly waxy texture, but as it warms in your fingers it melts into a smooth oil that glides through damp hair incredibly easily.
The directions for use say to massage the product into your scalp, and to leave it on for one hour before washing out with shampoo and water, and conditioning the ends of your hair. As a ‘wash and go’ kinda girl, an hour is quite a long time to wait, so this isn’t a treatment I would use on a daily or weekly basis, but it’s great for a fortnightly or monthly pamper session at the weekend. Especially as it gives quite an intense treatment.
I’ve used the treatment a few times now and the results are brilliant. A little goes quite a long way, so though the jar is small, it will last a good while. The product massages in nicely and feels lovely and soothing on the scalp. When I first used it I was slightly worried that, being an oil, it would leave my hair feeling greasy, but it washes out well with shampoo, although I find it takes a little while to wash out completely. After blow drying and straightening my hair, the difference is really noticeable. It leaves my hair looking silkier and fuller, and the result is also long-lasting.
Unfortunately, as I’ve had an incredibly hectic couple of months, I haven’t yet managed to get any before and after photos of my hair, but I will be updating this post within the next week or two, so check back soon.
All Old Wives Tail products are available online here, and they cater for all hair types. They offer free worldwide delivery on any order too!
*This Jojoba & Clove Organic Oil Hair Treatment was sent to me by Old Wives Tail for review purposes. All opinions expressed are honest and my own.*
Unlike myself, my younger sister Freya is extremely experimental with her hair colour. She’s been every shade of red and brown you can imagine, but a couple of months ago she dyed her hair a shade she now regrets – black. At first she loved it, but when her roots started to show the problems began, and no amount of touch ups would cover them properly. So, after being told about Superdrug’s Colour Rewind Hair Colour Remover by a friend, she decided to give it a go and get rid of the black for good. Colour Rewind is designed to remove permanent and semi-permanent dark hair colours but, quite unusually for products such as this, it does not contain any ammonia or bleach. I personally find the product intriguing and have been wanting to know whether it works for a while, so I’ve decided to do something a bit different for this post and review it in the form of an interview with my sister.
Unfortunately I didn’t get a picture of the contents of the box, but it contains a 60ml bottle of activator, a 60ml bottle of remover, a 60ml bottle of after treatment buffer, a pair of gloves and an instruction leaflet. The instructions, in brief, are as follows:
- Empty the contents of the activator bottle into the remover bottle and shake for 30 seconds to mix.
- Separate the hair into sections with a comb and apply the mixture evenly, section by section.
- Leave the hair to process for 60 minutes.
- Rinse out the mixture with warm water for 5 minutes (10 minutes for longer hair). Apply half the buffer, massage in for 1 minute then rinse for 5 minutes. Apply the rest of the buffer and rinse for a further 5 minutes.
- Dry hair thoroughly.
I spent the afternoon last Friday watching and helping my sister use the product, and afterwards I asked her about the experience, and here are her answers…
How easy to use was the product?
Colour Rewind is just as easy to use as a home hair dye kit, but takes slightly longer. However, I think it is better to get someone to help with the application if you find it difficult to separate your hair into sections around the back!
How long did the whole process take?
Including the application, I reckon it took an hour and a half. The main solution has to stay on for one hour and the rinsing process takes a good 15 minutes, but it’s all needed to get the best results. I don’t think it took too long… all I can say is make sure you have something interesting to read or watch during the wait though.
What did you like about the process/product?
Firstly, I liked the fact that this product actually exists! I thought the only way to get rid of unwanted colour was to spend loads of money at a salon getting it stripped! The product itself is not only affordable at £7.99 on this occasion, but does not contain ammonia or bleach, which reduces the chance of hair damage. I also liked the fact that I got to wear a hat made out of a plastic bag (not necessary, but keeps the solution warm for better results).
What didn’t you like about the process/product?
I can honestly say that the only thing I did not like about the product and process was the eggy smell. Saying that, I was expecting a full on volcanic sulphur eruption when opening the bottle, but it was bearable! I may have smelt like an omelette for a bit, but there were no other negatives. No burning, no itching, no hair loss like some may expect.
Are you pleased with the results?
I am so impressed with the results! I thought my hair may turn out quite ginger, since I have dyed it red numerous times and had read that it could affect the results, but it turned out pretty much the natural colour… maybe slightly darker with a slight copper tint, but that doesn’t bother me at all. To be able to get rid of the black has made me happy enough!
Have the results lasted?
Well the black has certainly disappeared, but I’ve noticed that since washing and drying it a few times, it has darkened quite a bit! Initially it was a light brown, slightly copper colour (almost natural), but now it’s a dark brown/dark mahogany colour. I don’t particularly mind as I’ve dyed my hair a similar colour before, but I think that it’s important to know that the initial colour after the process does not stay as light. I don’t know whether this has anything to do with the heat from the hairdryer or if the initial results just seemed lighter because of the dramatic change. Either way, the unwanted dye has definitely been ‘rewound’.
How many out of 10 would you give it?
At first I would have said 10 out of 10, but after a few days I will now give it 8 out of 10. It is a rather magical product, but the fact that my hair has darkened slightly takes the points off.
Would you recommend Colour Rewind?
Yes, definitely, especially if you can’t afford to go to a salon for treatment. I would consider using it again myself.
And now for the moment you’ve all been waiting for… before and after pictures!
Pretty good, right?
Having been there when my sister used the Colour Rewind kit, I must say that it is fairly fuss-free and easy to use. At £9.99 (currently on offer for £7.99) it is also extremely affordable and a lot safer than using ammonia or bleach to strip your hair. It might smell, but it is still an impressive product, and is BUAV approved which is also important. I have noticed that Freya’s hair has darkened slightly over the last few days, but it still looks a lot lighter than it did when it was black.
Superdrug’s Colour Rewind Hair Colour Remover can be purchased in store or online.
Have you ever tried this? What did you think?
PS. You can check out my sister’s art blog here!
I recently came across a hair care brand who attracted my attention for a very specific reason – they’re BUAV approved. I am always on the look out for cruelty free hair products as they are surprisingly difficult to find, so when biOrganics offered to send me a sample to review I was keen to try them out.
biOrganics was founded in 1991 as the first professional organic hair care brand in Europe. The brand claims that their products give salon results, and everything is made from natural and organic ingredients wherever possible, so they’re free from nasty parabens and synthetic chemicals. As mentioned earlier, biOrganics are BUAV approved, meaning they do not test on animals under any circumstance, and are also endorsed by the Vegetarian Society.
The sample I received is a 12ml bottle of biOrganics’ Salon Secret Elixir Hair Perfecting Oil. The oil itself is colourless and has a base of organic Argan Oil and Ylang Ylang, and can be used to smoothe frizz, add shine, and protect hair from heat. It is also said to strengthen and repair dry and brittle hair, and reduces blow-drying time.
My experiences with the oil so far have been mixed, but mostly good. The bottle says to ‘dispense 1-3 pumps into palms, rub hands together & apply directly to clean, towel-dried hair’, which is where I initially went wrong. Unfortunately, the sample bottle does not come with a pump spray, so I had to guess how much to use. I ended up applying a coin-sized amount to my hair (to the ends and mid-lengths as suggested), but after blow-drying my hair looked and felt greasy, and I had to wash the oil out again. It turns out I used too much oil for the length of my hair, but after being given some advice by the lovely folks at biOrganics I tried again with a smaller amount of oil (about a little fingernail amount), and it worked a LOT better. This time my hair did dry quickly, looked and felt incredibly soft, straightened easily and, most importantly, stayed straight all day! I usually end up with slightly frizzy locks a few hours after straightening, but biOrganics hair perfecting oil solves this problem. The lesson here is definitely LESS IS MORE!
I’ve also used the oil on dry hair. The bottle says to ‘Use sparingly on dry hair for extra smoothing prior to heat-straightening’, so I applied a very small amount to the dry ends of my hair. The oil seemed to create a protective layer between my hair and the heat, so rather than breaking and looking dry after straightening, my hair looked smooth and sleek.
Overall, once you learn how much oil your hair needs, this is a very good product if you want straighter, sleeker hair that lasts. The oil costs £3.99 for a sample bottle or £12.99 for a 50ml pump spray bottle, so it is very affordable, especially for a natural, cruelty free product, and I’d definitely recommend it. biOrganics Salon Secret Elixir Hair Perfecting Oil is available online here, and they also sell a range of shampoos, conditioners, brushes and other hair care products. Or, if you’d prefer to buy from a local store, you can also find your local stockist.
*This biOrganics Salon Secret Elixir Hair Perfecting Oil was sent to me on behalf of biOrganics for review purposes. All opinions expressed are honest and based on my own experience.*
When it comes to hair I’ll admit that I’m not usually very adventurous. Throughout my teens and early twenties I have always had it long and straight, and kept my natural colour, adding a few curls, flowers or lowlights here and there, and I’ve been happy with that! However, a couple of weeks ago I found a photo of myself as a child with blonde, bobbed hair, and for some reason it made me want to change my current style. Today I finally took the plunge and I had my hair done this afternoon. I asked for a long bob, shorter at the back and graduated to a longer point at the front, with a few layers. The hairdresser mentioned that the front of my hair wasn’t quite long enough for the style I wanted, so for now I’ve had it a bit longer at the back than I’d hoped, and in a few weeks time when the front is longer I’ll have it cut into a more defined bob. She still removed a good four or five inches though!
What do you think? People keep telling me the style suits me, and it’s nice to have all the split ends removed – my hair feels so much lighter! I’m definitely happy with it and I can’t wait to have the full bob put in now. I didn’t get home until after dark so I had to use flash to get a clear photo, so I’ll take a few more tomorrow in the daylight, from different angles, to give you a better idea of how it looks.
Back in August I reviewed TanOrganic’s Sunless Tan, and was incredibly impressed by how natural and subtle the light brown false tan looked on my skin. In that post I mentioned that TanOrganic also sold a skin oil to compliment the Sunless Tan, which I was very keen to try, so today I will be reviewing just that – TanOrganic’s OilArganic Multi-Use Moisturising Dry Oil.
TanOrganic are an Irish company and all of their products contain 100% natural and organic ingredients, and they are vegetarian friendly and BUAV approved. To continue their ethical ethos, TanOrganic also use glass packaging rather than plastic, which just so happens to make their products look a lot classier than most too.
OilArganic is a dry oil spray which contains nine different plant oils, all of which were carefully chosen to benefit the skin with their moisturising, restoring and soothing properties. These oils are: Argain, Borage, Rosehip, Macadamia, Orange Peel, Avocado, Jojoba Seed, Hemp Seed and Sweet Almond.
The oil itself smells absolutely beautiful. It has a very strong scent of orange, which has a sweet undertone of what smells like honey, but since there’s no honey in it, the sweetness must actually come from the rose and almond oil.
OilArganic is described as being ‘multi-use’, and it really is an all-round miracle in a bottle! The bottle states that it can be used on the face, body, hair, nails, scars & stretch marks, but it can also be added to the bath for a relaxing, moisturising pamper session, or used after applying TanOrganic Sunless Tan to help prolong the tan and ensure even fading. I haven’t yet used the oil in all of the above ways, but I’ve tried it on my body, nails and hair and can definitely vouch for its versatility!
The oil is applied using a basic pump spray, however, the oil tends to come out in a stream rather than a fine spray, so if you aim wrongly it can make a bit of a mess. In the bottle, the oil has a slight yellow tinge to it, but once on the skin it looks completely clear. It is also quickly and easily absorbed, so it doesn’t take much massaging in.
On the skin and nails, OilArganic has a brilliant moisturising effect. It soothes and smooths any dry patches, and leaves your skin feeling lovely and silky for the whole day. When I used this on my nails I focused on my cuticles, massaging them gently, and was amazed to find that they were instantly left softened. After a few days of use, I found it a lot easier than usual to push my cuticles back, and they are already looking and feeling a LOT healthier.
I have used the oil on my hair several times too, both when wet and dry. When wet, I rubbed a coin sized amount of oil into my hands before running them through my hair and blow drying as usual. This gave my hair a gorgeous sleek, shiny appearance, without leaving behind any greasy residue. On dry hair, it is fab for sprucing up lank hair by ruffling a small spray of oil into the roots.
Overall, I am really impressed with OilArganic. It’s an amazingly high quality oil, does exactly what it says on the bottle and is made all the better for being so versatile. It smells great too, which is always a bonus as some skin and hair oils can smell quite disgusting. I’m keen to try OilArganic on my scars, as well as after applying TanOrganic, so expect another post about this when I’ve done so!
*I was gifted this bottle of OilArganic by TanOrganic for review purposes. All thoughts and opinions expressed are honest and my own.*
As part of the BeTrousse beauty panel, every time BeTrousse bring out a new, exciting beauty kit, I receive one to review. In October BeTrousse launched their latest box – the Pretty Beauty Box, and earlier this month I happily received mine in the post. I had already seen on the BeTrousse website that the box contained NINE full size products, rather than the usual five, so I was really looking forward to trying this box out for size. Here is what I was met with when I opened the Pretty Beauty Box…
As you can see, the box is packed full of a wide range of products. In the past I have complained about there being too many face creams and not enough make up in the previous BeTrousse boxes, so I was very happy to see some make up and nail products in there this time. The products in the box are worth £122 in total, but the box costs just £19.
Above, you can see (clockwise from the top):
- Papier Poudre Gift Pack of 3 Booklets
- Cupcake Organic Frankincense & Orange Day Cream
- Yves Rocher Organic Refreshing Gel Cleanser
- Arganti 100% Pure Argan Oil
- Saffron London Cracking Nail Polish
- Vera Valenti Eyeshadow in Pink
- Yves Rocher Sexy Pulp Volume Gloss in Pink
- Kesari Radieuse Anti-Age
- Essyta Cosmetics Body Moisturising Lotion
As with all BeTrousse boxes, BeTrousse have provided full-sized products so that you can feel the full effect of each item before deciding whether to repurchase it or not. As such, I won’t do full reviews of everything until I have used them for a bit longer, so for now I will tell you my first impressions of each treat.
Papier Poudre Gift Pack – 3 Booklets – £7.95
Papier Poudre are little booklets of blotting papers, with each sheet being covered in a fine layer of absorbent powder, which gives a matte make up look after use. I used to have something like this when I was a teenager but hadn’t seen them around for years, so when I found these in the box I was very happy to see them! The pack contains three booklets, with a different shade of powder in each booklet – Rachel, Rose and White. I have tried these out already and they do their job perfectly, removing excess oil and shine from the face whilst adding a touch of powder. A great little product and something a bit different for BeTrousse!
Cupcake Organic Frankincense & Orange Day Cream – 30ml – £16
This Frankincense & Orange Day Cream by Cupcake Organic has to be one of the best things I have ever received in a BeTrousse box. For starters, I love the name of the company, the packaging is so bright and cute, and the glass pot gives it a luxurious feel. The cream itself smells absolutely ‘divine’ (to quote the company’s tagline), and it has a firm yet creamy texture which instantly softens the skin. The cream claims to protect and repair dry skin, which I have on my hands, so I will be using this a lot over the coming weeks and writing a full review in the not so distant future.
Yves Rocher Organic Refreshing Gel Cleanser – 200ml – £11
I’m yet to try Yves Rocher’s Refreshing Gel Cleanser properly so I can’t really comment on its quality, but it has a nice smooth texture and a light, fresh scent of Aloe Vera. I’ve heard a lot of good things about Yves Rocher as they produce natural, organic cosmetics which I prefer to use, so I’m expecting good things from this. The cleanser is suitable for the face AND eyes too, which is a bonus as all-in-one products lessen the clutter of bottles in the bathroom!
Arganti 100% Pure Argan Oil – 60ml – £10
Arganti’s Argan Oil is another product I was very pleased to see in this box as it 100% pure. I have tried Argan hair oils in the past but they were all combined with other plant oils, so I have been keen to try some pure Argan oil to see if it lives up to the hype. However, Arganti’s packaging isn’t the best (the bottle looks like a medicine bottle), and the oil smells horrible too (although I suppose that’s unavoidable). Having said that, I am looking forward to giving this a proper try, so watch this space for an Arganti review!
Saffron London Cracking Nail Polish – 14ml – £0.75p
BeTrousse are a little bit behind with this Nail Polish as the nail crackle trend has mostly been and gone, but as I said before it is nice to see a nail product in the box. The packaging may look simple and slightly cheap, but I actually quite like the classy contrast between black and gold. I have a few Saffron London polishes already and, for a cheap range, they are pretty good quality, so hopefully this will be the same.
Vera Valenti Eyeshadow in Pink – 10g – £2
To balance out the amazing-ness of the Cupcake Organic Day Cream, Vera Valenti’s Eyeshadow is the worst thing I have received in a beauty box. The packaging looks and feels very cheap and tacky, and the eyeshadow is really bad quality. It is chalky and one of the shadows actually broke up into tiny pieces and powder the first time I used it. Most of the colours are also far too pearlescent for my liking, but I must say I do quite like the purple shades in this palette.
Yves Rocher Sexy Pulp Volume Gloss in Pink – 10ml – £13.90
When I found Yves Rocher’s Sexy Pulp Volume Gloss in the box I instantly thought ‘YAY! Make up!’ Make up is one of the things that BeTrousse have been lacking, and this gloss has definitely made up for it. The gloss is a lovely shade of orangey pink, and has a fantastic shine to it. It isn’t sticky (although you can feel it on your lips) and it is extremely long-lasting… Even after eating the colour and shine are still visible. Expect a full review of this soon, too!
Kesari Radieuse Anti-Age – 30ml – £47
I wasn’t especially excited about Kerasi’s Radieuse Anti-Age at first as I’ve received several other anti-aging creams in my BeTrousse boxes in the past, and I don’t really think I need them yet! However, this one is really delicate and light and has a nice, nutty scent and colour. I’ve used it a few times on my face and neck and it is absorbed quickly and has a smoothing, softening effect. As far as anti-aging creams go, this is one of the best that I have sampled so far.
Essyta Cosmetics Body Moisturising Lotion – 250ml – £13.50
Last but not least, Essyta Cosmetics Body Moisturising Lotion. I’m a sucker for good moisturisers, and this is undoubtedly a good one. It has a pleasing scent and, like the Kerasi Radieuse Anti-Age, is lovely and light and easily absorbed. The lotion comes in a nice big bottle as well, which is always good.
If you like the look of the BeTrousse Pretty Beauty Box, keep an eye out tomorrow for details of a very special giveaway that I am running with BeTrousse! Alternatively, it is available to order via the BeTrousse website for just £19.
Which products in the Pretty Beauty Box do you like the look of?
*I was sent the BeTrousse Pretty Beauty Box by BeTrousse for review purposes. All thoughts and opinions expressed are honest and my own*
Hello everyone! Today’s Chocolate Treat Week post will focus on chocolate coloured and scented hair care products. I have spent a lot of time recently trying to improve the look and feel of my hair, as it tends to switch between being dull and dry or lank and greasy depending on the weather and how often I wash it. In my search for products suited to my hair I happened to discover two fantastic ones which are also chocolatey, and as such are perfect for this post. Allow me to share them with you…
Wash with… Toni & Guy Chocolate Brown Colour Reviver Shampoo
I’ve always been somewhat thrifty when it comes to shampoo, but when I found this Colour Reviver Shampoo by Toni & Guy I decided to invest as it looked and sounded too good not to. This particular Colour Reviver, in ‘Chocolate Brown’, is intended for use on natural or dyed brown hair, and claims to ‘extend the richness and depth of tone’. As a proud brunette, I like to accentuate the colour of my hair as much as possible without the use of hair dye, so I was keen to try it out.
The shampoo itself has a very thick consistency, and is speckled with bronze and golden glittery deposits, which cling to the hair to give it that ‘depth of tone’. Unfortunately, it doesn’t smell like chocolate (it has a fairly standard shampoo scent) but I suppose that makes it suitable for those who dislike strongly scented hair products.
Due to the thickness of the shampoo, it is slightly difficult to work into the hair at first, but with a bit of persistence a nice lather can be built up. The bottle says to rinse the shampoo out thoroughly to avoid staining, and that it can be used for every wash on natural hair and every other wash on dyed hair.
I use Colour Reviver with my usual Avon conditioner, and then blow dry my hair as normal. After using the Colour Reviver, my hair always has a rich, intense colour to it, is fantastically soft and shiny and moves fluidly… Almost like melted chocolate! I couldn’t get a photograph that shows just how nice this shampoo makes my hair look, but you can clearly see how shiny it makes it! It really is quite impressive. The results are hardy too… I washed my hair before going swimming today, and even after getting it wet in the pool it still looked great after it dried.
The only thing I don’t like about this product is the packaging, but that’s personal choice… I’m just not that keen on the flip lid design!
Toni & Guy’s Chocolate Brown Colour Reviver Shampoo retails at £5.80 for a 250ml bottle, but is currently on offer on Amazon for £4.06. It’s hard to find this shampoo in shops these days so the internet is probably your best bet if you want to try it for yourself!
Freshen Up with… Superdrug Chocolate Brownie Dry Shampoo
I usually wash my hair every day, but sometimes I don’t have the time or I just can’t be bothered, and that’s when dry shampoo becomes an essential. In the past I have used Batiste dry shampoo, but to be honest I never really got on with it… It didn’t seem to make much difference to my hair, other than leaving behind a white residue. So, when I picked up some of Superdrug’s Chocolate Brownie Dry Shampoo instead, I was very happy.
Like Toni & Guy’s Chocolate Brown, Superdrug’s Chocolate Brownie is for use on brunette hair as it is lightly coloured, and as such doesn’t make your hair look powdery and white! The spray has a very strong chocolate scent which doesn’t smell at all artificial – it literally smells like warm chocolate brownies in the oven! Delicious.
To use the dry shampoo you just need to spray it onto dry hair from about 30cm away, then gently brush it through, et voila! Freshened hair. A word of warning with this one though… The spray is VERY strong. I have asthma and used this in my bedroom last week with the windows closed and could barely breathe afterwards, so make sure you use it in a well ventilated area!
Superdrug’s Dry Shampoo makes unwashed hair look less greasy and gives it a bit of volume, and the results last a good few hours before you need to tse the spray again. I actually bought this on offer recently at three cans for £2.99, which is an absolute bargain as one 150ml can lasts for ages. If you’re quick, you can take advantage of this offer too as it’s still running, but even at £1.99 full-price it’s amazing value for money. Chocolate Brownie Dry Shampoo can be found in Superdrug stores, or online here.
The Last Rolo…
The Last Rolo is where I hand over the last few words of each Chocolate Treat Week blog post to another blogger. In the run up to Chocolate Treat Week I asked five of my favourite bloggers a couple of questions about their favourite chocolate treats, and today’s answers come from Tianna of Storybook Apothecary.
Can you recommend any chocolate scented, flavoured or themed beauty/fashion products?
Intrinsic Organics has a chocolate mint lip balm that is lovely! I also love using cocoa powder and honey as a face mask to get glowing skin, does that count? Lol. I’ve posted about the lip balm on my blog here.
What is your favourite chocolate treat to eat, and why?
My favorite chocolate is Godiva dark chocolate with raspberry sauce filling. It is sooo good. The rich bitter flavor of the dark chocolate with sweetness of the raspberry is to die for!
I hope you have enjoyed today’s post, and thanks for reading! Do you use any chocolate scented or coloured hair products?
PS. Please don’t forget to check back tomorrow for my next Chocolate Treat Week post, which will focus on makeup!
You may remember that a few months ago I posted about a new social website called What’s In My Handbag, or WIMH. WIMH is a place to post photos of what you carry in your handbag, and to share your beauty secrets with other members by tagging each product. You can also see what other people carry with them and learn about their beauty secrets in return. I joined, and was given a personal invite link to share with friends, family and bloggers, which I did, and because 25 people joined using my invite I earned a free gift! Thank you if you signed up using my invite by the way. After waiting a couple of months for my gift to arrive it turned up this morning, rather unexpectedly, which was a very nice surprise indeed. I had a job interview this morning so I needed something to calm my nerves and the excitement of receiving this helped!
The gift came in a sleek black box, and was wrapped with black tissue paper and paper pieces… Very reminiscent of Illamasqua’s classy packaging, I must say! It was also sealed with a personalised sticker which I thought was a really lovely touch.
When I ripped open the tissue paper I was met with a ‘Service Menu’ from Filthy Gorgeous. I have been wanting to try Filthy Gorgeous nail varnish for a good while so I got very excited when I saw the leaflet, and kept my fingers crossed that there was a Filthy Gorgeous varnish inside!
And now for the part you’ve all been waiting for… Here is what I found in amongst all the packaging!
As I’d hoped, my free gift contained a bottle of Filthy Gorgeous nail varnish in the neon pink shade of ‘Rosey Posey’. The varnish looks absolutely gorgeous with the lace effect on the lid and the pretty little guitar pick detail. I can’t wait to try it out! I also received a bottle of L’Oreal’s Mythic Oil. I’ve heard quite a bit about Mythic Oil and it sounds like an interesting product so I was pleased to see this in box too.
Overall, I’m very pleased with my free gift and I’m looking forward to using both things, so keep an eye out for swatches and reviews of the nail varnish and oil coming soon!
Summer is slowly coming to an end, but there’s still time to dash off into the sun for a last-minute relaxing mini break. You’ve got your clothes sorted… Bikini? Check. Sun dresses? Check. Something gorgeous for the evening? Check, and you’re almost good to go, but there’s always the question of what toiletries and cosmetics to take, and what to leave behind. If you packed all the big bottles and endless tubes of lotions and potions that you usually use then you’d need another suitcase, am I right? So, in the name of making life easier for us all, I thought I’d take the opportunity to narrow everything down and come up with ten little solutions to this bulky problem, which will leave plenty of room in your case for your beach reads and novelty souvenirs – you can thank me later!
1: Basic Make Up
Vanity cases and make up bags stuffed full of make up are impractical and unnecessary when travelling. This might sound ridiculous, but all you need to take with you for a fresh-faced summer make up look are five basic items – foundation, eyeliner, mascara, lip gloss and blush. That’s it! Don’t believe me? Check out my Top 5 Summer Make Up Essentials post for proof that that’s all you need.
2: Nail Varnish
If you can’t afford or don’t want an expensive salon manicure before you go away then it’s a good idea to pack a bottle of nail varnish. You never know when you might be invited out last-minute for a romantic meal or an evening at a bar, so choose a quick drying varnish that you can slick on in seconds before you leave.
I highly recommend Sally Hansen’s Insta-Dri Nail Colour in ‘Ruby Rush’. It’s a deep, classic shade that will go well with any outfit, it has a wide brush for quick, even coverage and it is dry to the touch in just minutes. It’s wonderfully chip resistant too, and a new favourite of mine.
3: Make Up Remover
If you’re like me, you probably have a bottle of make up remover for your eyes, one for your face, and a big bag of cotton wool balls and cotton buds that you use them with. That’s a lot of bottles and bags to take on one little trip! A great substitute to use for the few days you’re away are make up remover wipes, as they save space, are quick to use and can be thrown away once you’re done with them.
Kleenex recently brought out a range of make up remover wipes which are made of natural fibres and are gentle on the skin, yet very effective. The ones pictured are specifically for eye make up, but they also make facial cleansing wipes.
4: Sun Lotion
Ever noticed that sun lotion tends to come in huge bottles that you’ll never get through during a two-week holiday, let alone whilst on a mini break? Well, Hawaiian Tropic have solved that problem with their handy 100ml bottles of sun lotion! They still contain the gorgeously scented, high quality lotion that the big bottles do – they’re just lighter and more compact, and the perfect size to carry in even the smallest of bags.
I’ve been using the Hawaiian Tropic Protective Sun Lotion SPF30 and I adore it. The lotion not only protects your skin but softens it too, as it contains vitamins C and E, and is gorgeously light and silky. It’s also ‘very water resistant’, which is great if you fancy a swim in the sea, but it’s still a good idea to apply it regularly to stay as safe as possible. At £5.49 these mini bottles are a real steal.
5, 6 and 7: Moisturiser, Shampoo and Shower Gel
Now is a good time to raid your old beauty boxes, gift sets and collections of product samples. All those little bottles and sachets of moisturiser, shampoo and shower gel that you never thought you’d use are actually the perfect size for taking on mini breaks! Not only do they save space, but you might also discover a hidden gem amongst them which you can repurchase and carry on using when you get home.
Rather than packing chunky spray deodorants, why not take a roll-on deodorant instead? They’re much kinder on the skin, and compact enough to carry with you.
A particular favourite of mine is Vaseline Aloe Fresh 24h Protection Deodorant, as it is long-lasting, the aloe makes it extremely moisturising and refreshing, and it doesn’t leave white marks on your dark clothes!
9: Disposable Razor
You never know when you might need to neaten up whilst on holiday, but taking a bulky epilator or home waxing kit with you is far too much trouble! The solution? Take a disposable razor! Just because it’s disposable doesn’t mean it won’t do a good job, especially if you use Wilkinson Sword Extreme 3 Beauty Razors.
I’ve been using these myself and they give an amazingly smooth result at a fraction of the usual hair removal cost (you get four for £3.99). The three blade razor head is flexible so moves with the curves of your body for a close shave, and it even features a moisturising strip of aloe and jojoba to leave your skin feeling soft – not what you’d expect from a disposable razor at all! They look and feel more like luxury razors, but once you’re done with them you can just throw them away so they’re far more convenient for travelling with.
A great way to make the transition from a lazy day on the beach to a lively evening at a bar is with a beautiful fragrance, but who wants to be carrying a big glass bottle of perfume around with them? That’s where Avon’s mini fragrances come in. Avon now sell miniature versions of their best selling perfumes which are great for top ups throughout the day or, in this case, to take with you on a short trip. You will find the full range on page 206 of Brochure 16, including 15ml Purse Sprays and 30ml Travel Sprays (how apt!), ranging from £5 to £7.50 each.
Wherever you’re going this summer, I hope these tips will help you know what to pack, and I hope you will Be Spontaneous whilst on your travels! Why not do something you’ve never done before, and then share it with the Be Spontaneous crew on Facebook? You could even win some amazing prizes in the process!
Thanks for reading,
*The Hawaiian Tropic Protective Sun Lotion SPF30 and Wilkinson Sword Xtreme3 Beauty Razors featured in the post were given to me by Wilkinson Sword for review purposes. Everything else was purchased using my own money. All opinions are honest and my own. Some affiliate links have been used*