Product Review: Clarin’s Hydra-Quench Mask.

No matter what the weather I can’t live without a hydrating mask!

My skin is combination but since like most of you beautiful ladies I rarely drink enough water and I work in AC so it tends to feel dry because it’s dehydrated.

So many people misdiagnose dehydrated skin! Some of the signs are:
1. After you have used a cleanser (before toning) the skin looks shiny: This isn’t oil this is your skin asking for water.
2. fine lines that run vertically (mainly near the eyes, forehead & cheeks).
3. Flaky, itchy, tight, dry, sensitive skin.

4. skin looks dull and lacks radiance. 

So what do I do about it?

I use products for hydration and I try to drink more fluids (herbal tea’s count but caffeine will dehydrate you). Once/twice a week I use a mask for an added boost of hydration.

The latest in my mask collection is Clarin’s Hydra-Quench.

clarins hydra quench mask

Texture:
I really like this as its like a thick lotion, not quite a cream but I wouldn’t class it as a gel. I guess you could call it an emulsion but either way it glided on nicely to my skin.

How to use it:
With any mask you should use it on cleansed skin (if used after a scrub it’s absorbed better). Warm the product in the palm of your hands and apply a thin layer on face and neck. I apply on my decollete as  well since it’s often exposed to the elements (the bad side to low neckline tops). Leave on from 5 – 10 mins until the mask has been “drunk” by the skin and then remove any excess, you can do this using a cotton with toner or damp cloth. I always use a mask at least once a week, this mask is very gentle so can be used as often as you need/have time to (even daily).

On application:
It’s got a nice cool feel to it and a breezy seaside scent (it kinda makes me miss summer). It’s a really nice product to apply, it glides on beautifully. I feel my skin calm with this mask, no stinging no irritation just perfectly hydrated. Since it contain’s Katafray extract it helps to reinforce the barrier layer of the skin, limiting dehydration over time.

Would I buy it again?
The thing I love about this mask is that a little goes a really long way. The Hydra-Quench mask comes in a 75ml and costs approx 36 euro, so it’s really reasonable when you judge it on price and size.

Do you prefer hydrating or purifying masks? And what are you using?
Love Steph x

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Clarins Instant Concealer: Product Review.

A good concealer is a must have…
and I am guessing tomorrow morning many of you will need one after New Year celebrations. 

I am totally IN LOVE with this concealer by Clarins. It’s beautifully light weight (yet covering) that means such a small amount goes a long way. Because it contains Aloe Vera it’s soothing for the most delicate of eye areas. I like that it also contains Caffeine extract to help circulation so puffiness and dark circles are TREATED as well as hidden.

ClarinsInstantConcealerPhotocredit: Google

How to Apply

I always apply my concealer (and foundation) by placing a small amount on the back of my hand. The reason I do this is because the heat from my hand will gently warm up the product. I can then use a small amount at a time to touch up the areas I need to. I prefer to apply foundation first and concealer on top. That way I get the most cover where it’s needed and I don’t feel caked.

I like to apply this all over my eye area as a base and if I am going for an au natural look I will just add powder and mascara. I love that it removes any redness from my lids as well as defuses the dark under eye colour.

Colour

So I am using the 02 which has a slight pinkish / beige tone.
In all honesty as long as I blend the 02 the colour is fine. However, I think for winter the 01 might have been a better choice.

Pros

Lightweight fluid that covers
Ingredients which help to treat puffiness and dark circles
Stays in place for a full day
Doesn’t cake
Doesn’t set in my now appearing wrinkles.
I have actually been using anywhere I felt needed a touch up, not just for my eye area.

Cons

This isn’t a Con for Clarins since I have nothing bad to say about the product. Sorry I genuinely love this concealer 🙂

HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Love Steph x

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Skincare Essentials: Septembers Favourites.

My skin is changing (those first signs are forming and I see them even if no one else does) and my skincare should change to match my skin concerns. I do believe that skincare is a really personal choice. What suits my skin and what might suit your’s is completely different, and we will always have our favourites.

I have been changing my routine quite a bit in the past year, I have tried out samples from many different brands before committing, I do believe that when you use one brand its better as products work in synergy together to give the best results. Having said that we all have those items we refuse to give up! Therefore I am presenting my current additions to my cosmetic collection.

septembers skincare

My current favourites AM

CleanserDermalogica’s Special cleansing gel.
This is a really mild cleansing gel suitable for all skin-types but best for people with a combination skin, since I do have a little oil in my T-zone area and the rest of my skin is quite dry and sensitive I have seen a big difference since I started using it. After cleansing my skin I feel it soft and it leaves a light film on the skin which is hydrating this is mostly due to the calming balm mint and lavender extracts which soothe the skin. It is also a soap free gel  texture which foams slightly.

TonerDermalogica’s Multi-Active toner.
This is a spray on toner, when buying I was confused between the Multi-Active and the Ultra-Calming I am a sensitive skin type and I do suffer with redness. I thought that since it’s the first time I’m using it to try out the main lines, then later I can try the ultra calming and compare.  So far I’ve been using this toner for a week and half and had no problems with it. I like that the spray form is so refreshing! also in the heat of summer its a welcome feeling, in winter I might switch to spraying cotton and swiping it over my skin.

DaycreamDermalogica’s Skin Smoothing cream.
I have just finished Elizabeth Arden’s Prevage face cream with SPF30, it’s quite a rich texture which my skin normally likes, and It’s given my skin a needed boost whilst I was going through a stressful period.
Since I am using a lot of products from Dermalogica I decided it would be a good idea to switch to one of their creams. I decided to choose the Skin Smoothing because its packed full of anti oxidants. I love the texture however I hate that it doesn’t have an SPF so I bought one to use during the day.

SPF: La Roche Posay’s Anthelios XL SPF 50+ Extreme Fluid.
This is a really super light weight emulsion with a very high, broad, photostable UVA/UVB protection. (according to the website….) Optimal SPF 50+ protection reinforced against UVA rays (stricter than the European recommendation) thanks to patented filtering system Mexoplex® combined with La Roche-Posay Thermal Spring Water, soothing and antioxidant.
What I like is that it doesn’t feel greasy on the skin, and it doesn’t leave me white. In such a hot climate like Malta it’s really important to use a good spf daily. Did you know that most of the sun’s damage is done from September to May when people skip the sunblock…

PrimerDermalogica’s Skin Perfecting Primer & NYX Cosmetics’s Primer.
The Dermalogica primer I bought it just before Christmas and it has lasted me until now, I don’t use it everyday but I have had good use from this product. It is also anti ageing so it makes me feel better knowing that I am helping to prevent the first signs. Where as the NYX I bought during the blogging event and I have to admit it’s taken over from the Dermalogica one. I find my make up just stays better with this! However, I like the Dermalogica one because it has a tint, so it really depends on the day to which primer I choose.

My current favourites PM

Eye make up remover: (without a doubt) La Roche Posay’s Respectissme.
It removes everything and is super gentle with my lashes. This is a staple of my products and I have been using it for the past 2/3 years I wouldn’t change it.

Scrub
: Dermalogica’s Daily Microfoliant.
I adore it. If I don’t use it for a couple of days I really feel my skin rough and dull. Exfoliation is a really important part of skincare as it promotes the regeneration of new cells. I find this product is so gentle my skin can use it every day. I like how easy this product is to use, and how quick it is to use. Just add a small amount in the palm of my hand and mix with water to form a paste (If I am feeling very lazy I have mixed it with the Special cleansing Gel and a bit of water) and use it during the second cleanse. That’s right! I always do a double cleanse in the evening to break down and remove all the residues left from make up and sun block and everything else which clogs my skin.

Night creamClarin’s Blue Orchid Oil.
I love it the texture and the feel, and the smell its such a beautiful product. I really enjoy applying this product in an upward motion it makes me feel like I am really pampering my skin. I have a full review here for you to read. It is a must for dehydrated skins.

What I’m not using….

Eyecream: Nothing beats Estee Lauder’s Advance Night Repair which is still out of stock. I cant wait for it to launch and it will be one of the first products I reach for. I have been waiting for ages for it to come in, but I am hopeful that it will arrive in the next consignment (which will be by the end of September). I am dying to try out the new formula.

 Serum: Nothing at the moment, I will start using again in the winter months I will probably stick to Estee Lauder’s Advance Night Repair which like the eye cream is also under going a formula upgrade. I have been a fan of this serum for the past 6 years or so!! However I do also like Clinique’s Turnaround which is a good radiance booster.

The best thing about skincare is it is customisable to you! See how your skin is changing, how its feeling, note the things that bother you, and always work on correcting the issues one at a time. Don’t be over ambitious there is no magic formula that will cure everything.  One step at a time you can achieve a beautiful skin.

Love Steph x

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Clarin’s product review: Eyeliner Pencil

I have always been a fan of Clarin’s products

So when I think it’s time to update my personal make-up I always look for something that will wear well and last, I love my eye liners to have a smooth smudgy easy glide texture, ultimately what ever I buy for my home use nearly always ends up being used on my clients. Therefore I like to buy quality products from brands I trust.

I also love the range of colours they have,

clarins eyeliner

The colours show are:

01: Noir – Black
03: Gris – Grey
07: Or – Gold

I know that the black and the grey I will get a lot of use from, the gold maybe not as much but sometimes you have to buy items just for the sake of having one… ( even though I have another 3 golds in my beauty case)

IMG_20130904_213202

They have such rich pigments and they glide on beautifully.

This morning I used the black and applied some Nyx Cosmetic’s eyeshadow on top to give it a more layered texture. I am happy to say it’s lasted all day even after I laid down for a nap. (I normally would have removed my make up but I had such a bad migraine it was a matter of sleep or be sick). Happy to say I am feeling much better and I guess it’s tested the staying power! I have no smudges everything is pretty much how it was this morning.

I do think though that this is the type of eyeliner that need’s to be set in place with an eyeshadow to keeping it lasting, Since even with leaving the product on my hand a good 10 mins I can still smudge it with my fingers. Having said that it doesn’t feel heavy or sticky, The texture is smooth and the more I look at the gold the more I want to wear it….

Have you got any Clarin’s products? If so which ones and what are your favourite liners like?

Love Steph x

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Time to change my skincare?

I have been working in cosmetics since 2007…

Yet I always tend to stick to the products I loved (Mainly Clinique & Estee Lauder), always a little hesitant to change from the brands I knew my skin agreed with.

However, as a blogger I feel I have a duty to experiment a little with other brands and report back… So these are all products which are new to my routine. As you might have noticed I have been trying Dermalogica products as these are products I use in the salon I want to know that my clients will enjoy them and trying a product is the best way to understand a product.

My skin is changing (those first signs are forming and I see them even if no one else does) and my skincare should change to match my skin concerns. I do believe that skincare is a really personal choice. What suits my skin and what might suit your’s is completely different, and we will always have our favourites.

My current favourites

Cleanser: Dermalogica PreCleanse for removing really stubborn make up & Clinique AntiBlemish soap bar, I have a very clear skin but I find that in summer especially I get underlying congestion and this product has been a staple in my bathroom for the past 3/4 years. I am now interested to try the new Estee Lauder cleansers which was launched last week, which are a cleanser and mask hybrid.

Eye make up remover: without a doubt La Roche Posay’s Respectissme. It removes everything and is super gentle with my lashes. This is a staple of my products and I have been using it for the past 2/3 years I wouldnt change it.

Scrub
: I am using the Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant and I adore it. If I don’t use it for a couple of days I really feel my skin rough and dull. Exfoliation is a really important part of skincare as it promotes the regeneration of new cells. I find this product is so gentle my skin can use it every day.

Mask
: I currently have a mask from Good Thing’s which to be honest with im not that happy with, and I need to buy a new one. I was previously using a clay mask from the Clinique Antiblemish line and I really loved it.

Toner
: I am currently using rose water as a toner, its gentle and does the trick.

Eyecream: I was given a sample of Dermalogica’s Total Eyecare spf 15 at the training seminar last week and I am enjoying it but nothing beats Estee Lauder’s Advance Night Repair which is still out of stock. I cant wait for it to launch and it will be one of the first products I reach for.

Serum
: This is a product which I dont always use everyday, I tend to use serums at certain times of the year depending on my skin. At the moment im not using one.

Daycream
: I just started Elizabeth Arden’s Prevage face cream with spf 30, its quite a rich texture which my skin normally likes but I think this product is a little too much for everyday so I am keeping it at my partners for the weekends. This system seems to be working well for my skin and I am using Dermalogica’s Dynamic Skin Recovery spf30 during the rest of the week.

Primer: Dermalogica’s Skin Perfecting Primer I bought it just before Christmas and it has lasted me until now, I dont use it everyday but I have had good use from this product. It is also anti ageing so it makes me feel better knowing that I am helping to prevent the first signs.

Night cream: I am currently using Clarin’s Blue Orchid Oil and I love it the texture and the feel, its such a beautiful product.

You will notice that nearly all the products I use contain a SPF. In such a hot climate like Malta it’s really important to use a good spf daily. Did you know that most of the sun’s damage is done from September to May when people skip the sunblock…

 

What are your current favourite products?

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