Thursday, 22 May 2014

Dermaflannel Results - Skin Care Update - Dairy Update

This is a bit of a wordy post, but I hope it will be helpful to people struggling with skin problems, and I've tried to throw in a few pics to break it up a bit

If you've read any of my previous posts, you'd know I've been suffering from various levels of problems skin. It has really yo-yo'd in state since I was eleven, but I believe I may have nailed a skin care and diet routine which is nourishing and healing for my skin, and I'd like to share my results with you.

I've always wanted to do a dramatic skin transformation results post, but have never had enough improvement to justify one, so I put the idea on the back burner for a while, and it wasn't until I stumbled across some photos I took around the time I wrote the Dairy Disappointed post, which I published nearly a year ago, and was shocked how much my skin had improved!

Before I share my results with you, maybe you'd like to know what lifestyle changes to achieve this improvement?

First, and I really do think most important, is your diet. Not only do you feel different on the inside, it shows through your skin. I can't stress enough, I have not embarked on some strict 'dieting' scheme, just eating less sweets and junk food, more veggies and fruit. You know the deal, it's not rocket science!

I have also found an incredible difference eating full fat dairy products, which I know to some of you would seem like a no-go. I don't exactly know the in's and out's of the science behind it, but it's something to do with the skimming process which reduces the fat in dairy products which alters the produce and some peoples digestive systems can't process the enhanced food. Also many companies add extra sugars to low-fat foods to make them taste decent, which kind of counter acts the reduced fat part!

Once I had my diet pinned down, I wanted to (gently) tackle my acne scars. They were red-raw and bumpy, and even the best concealer couldn't hide them, and my make up would end up cakey and didn't grant me any confidence. The opposite of what I wanted to achieve!

I had banned any nasty scrubs as I knew now these irritated my skin, and wanted to try some BHA and AHA products, but I had limited funds, I then stumbled across the Dermaflannel. It promised to achieve similar results to those acid products but was suitable for people who couldn't use them (or who were on a budget) I asked for one for my birthday this year and haven't looked back.

The Results

I have actually decided to share the worst side, as I felt it had more improvement. It's also the side I sleep on the majority of the time, although I'm not sure how much of a impact this has.

I also noticed when comparing the photos that I have more of a defined jaw, which is probably another result of diet improvement.

As I'm sure you can see, I still have improvement to make, but I felt what I had been doing in the last three months had made such an improvement I was confident and trusting enough to share these slightly grim photos from my past.

What skin care improvements have you noticed recently?
Do you think it's a good idea to track developments?

On a side note, my blog will be a year old on the 25th May, how does a blogger celebrate this?

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Buying Makeup - Tips and Tricks

Although I love buying makeup, sometimes it can me a bit of a 'mare; finding the right shade, best coverage or a long lasting palette.

I've been pondering about doing this post for a few weeks, as I'm sure a lot of you have your own criteria when it comes to buying makeup, and I didn't want to leave something out, because I felt it was too obvious.

So I thought I could post a few of my personal top tips, then people can suggest their go-to procedures in the comments too!

In no particular order here are some of my tips and tricks when buying makeup!

1. When trying out lip shades, most people apply the testers on the back of their hand, but if you apply it to your finger tip you get the colour which will show on your lips as there is a similar blood supply.

2. Need to know which mascara gives you the thickest lashes? Ask an assistant if they have disposable mascara wands to apply the product, this prevents cross-contamination between customers using the testers.
Alternatively, you can pick up a pack from a wholesalers and take your own.

3. Always test foundation on your face, preferably by the jawline to avoid getting the tide marks.

4. Leave the foundation on for a while, because some products oxidise, making them a shade or two darker over time.
This will also give you an indication as to how long-lasting the product is.

5. Go into daylight to double check the foundation is the correct shade. The fluorescent lighting in department store often don't show the products as their true colours. Remember to pack your compact mirror!

6. Wondering why that eyeliner makes three dots instead of a fluid line? Don't be afraid to ask how a certain product works; counter assistants have a vast knowledge of their products, and may be able to show you how to use a product in multiple ways.

7. Can't find the tester for the product you want to try? Don't open a sealed product, it will irritate the staff. I can speak from experience!

8. Want to test a kohl pencil or lip liner? Ask an assistant if there is a sharpener, this makes it hygienic for you and other customers.

9. Similarly, don't test a product on your face if you have a cold-sore, eye infection or other contagious skin problem. It's not nice to spread infection.

10. To test a face or eye primer, apply the product to your inner forearm, then apply a foundation or eye shadow over the top, then see how long it stays on your skin. Some eye primers even make the product more vivid, so great for a long-lasting evening look!

So there are 10 of my tips, did you do any of these? 
Or learn something new?
I'd love to hear some of your tips

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Not Another Tag Tag

The lovely Tea Party Beauty created this humorous tag, and I couldn't not do it. I only take part it tags when I find the questions interesting and a bit unusual from the norm rather than 'MAC or Sephora' especially when we don't have Sephora in the UK!

The Rules

You must include both myself & the person who tagged you in your post (and the rules too). 
Once you've answered all your questions you need to tag 5 people.
Also if you tweet Tea Party Beauty the link to your post (@teapartybeauty) she will RT. 
I will retweet too (@LittleRuf)
If you are tagged & don't do the post you will have bad luck for 68.5 years. FACT. 
(her words not mine ;-))

You've made it BIG & bagged some VIP Fashion Week tickets. You lucky devil you. But in your rush to get there & get yourself noticed you forgot your VIP Passes. The guy on the door says he will cut you a deal, you can go in only if you sacrifice either your Front Row seat, backstage privileges or goody bag. What's it gonna be? 
Being the short arse than I am, I would be keen to get in the front row, as it's almost guaranteed a giraffe neck will sit in front of me otherwise. And I'm trying to get out the habit of falling for freebies, like spending over a certain amount and getting some free product which you never end up using, just because it's free. So I'd probably opt for sacrificing the goodie bag.

You're making a new Subscription box, what 4 items & which dreaded perfume sample would you include in it? 
I would definately include a base coat nail varnish, cause it grinds my gears when people complain their nails get stained but aren't using a base coat. The other three items would probably be a mascara; I'd never be unhappy getting a mascara as I have to replace mine so frequently. Also a foundation primer and a hair masque. So no one can complain about colours and shades! Lastly the perfume... Something everyone has anyway- Honey by Marc Jacobs.

What's your biggest blogging bug bear? The one thing guaranteed to make your blood boil & have you screaming/eye rolling at your laptop?
Nothing winds me up too much; I don't like when people comment with one word like 'nice'. I'm also not keen when someones blog is filled with lots of sponsored posts; I'm not doubting their opinions are genuine, but they may not have actually wanted the product initially

No more joining in Twitter chats only slightly relevant to your blog. You can only join in one blogger chat a week for the rest of your blogging days, which one's it gonna be & why? 
I swear the #lbbloggers chat is the only one I manage to catch

'Fess up, do you actually own any MAC? If so what don't you like about the product? 
I do own a few MAC products, the Studio Fix liquid and powder foundations. I don't like how the powder only comes in excessively pink or yellow tones. And MAC foundations always have that smell.

The blogging Gods ban arm swatching, which body part will you swatch on now?
My feet? Would that disgust people?

You can no longer have Yankee Candles & Perfume Bottles in the background of your shots, what other inanimate object will you choose?
I'd probably opt for some garden shots, like grass and some cute cobble stones. 

Your blogs Instagram is it for cats or meal shots?
Deffo meal shots. I have zilch cats in my life, plus I'm more of a dog person...


Caitlin - The Moll Shebang
Rachel - Lazerlips Loves
Lois - Wirebone

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Essentials Haul

Do you ever seem to run out of all your essential everyday products around the same time? It's a bit of a pain, but I went on a bit of an essentials haul, and as I don't normally share me day-to-day products on pocket-full of bobby pins, I thought I would show you the foundations of my cosmetics.

(Left to right)

I normally go for the Harley Street Base coat as my nails a ridged and it is amazing at smoothing them out for an even colour application, but as I've been wearing gels a lot recently, but nails aren't in the best condition so I opted for the A&E base coat which has vitamins and proteins in to help restore the nail.
It was paired with Albert Bridge top coat, which I'm hoping is as good as the Kensington Caviar topcoat, because I swear by that for chip free nails. So although these particular products are new for me, I always trust Nails Inc for my base and top coats which I needed to replace.

Natural Collection White Eye Liner
 (couldn't find online link)
Although I've been wanting to get a off-white/ cream eyeliner to use on my waterline, these are actually to use with my IPL to mark out guide lines to ensure all areas are covered. These two pencils should last me about five or six sessions sessions.

I have never really come across a nail varnish remover I thought exceeded any other, and because I need to replace them so frequently, I try to keep to lower priced ones. I think this is £1.35, bargin.

Previously I've had the Mac brush cleaner, but as boots had a 3 for 2 offer on, I wasn't going to turn down a opportunity to save money. I have yet to use it yet, as I tend to clean my brushes at the weekend, but No7 are renowned for quality products, and the brush cleaner is Hypo-allergenic too.

This is the second time I have bought this specific Eucerin moisturiser, I was so happy when they brought this product out as it has SPF 30, where as the one I was using previously had no SPF. I don't think the moisturiser has particularly improved my skins condition, as I mostly just have acne scars, but it it good at keeping spots at bay, and is gentle enough to compliment the rest of my skin care routine. I also like that is had a hygienic pump, rather than in a pot.

(The link is to the regular paddle brush, mine is the large, but was not online)
My original paddle brush went walk about over a year ago, and I thought when we were packing to move I would stumble across it, but I never did, and have only just got round to purchasing a new one. I've always trusted in the quality of Denman brushes after I once bought a Primark brush and a tangle ripped the handle off (whoops). I have a few other of their brushes including the back combing brush and tangle tamer.

This was my one splurge product. With some of my birthday money, I thought I would treat myself to a decent powder, although it wasn't the most exciting product to buy from Mac, it was very hard not to buy one of the lipsticks I was testing on my hand, I am trying to save the rest of my money for some facials.

What essential products do you always go back for?

Do you ever feel like all your products run out at the same time?

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Whats In My Drawers - Part Two

In part two of the 'whats in my drawer' post I'm letting you have a nose through the plastic stacked drawers I keep on top of my chest of drawers. I keep all the bits and pieces I want easy access too, but don't use on a daily basis, and don't keep on my dresser.

Pictured on the right is my jewellery box, which I haven't included the contents of in this post. 

So in the top drawer I have random hair accessories; backcomb brush, bun donut and an assortment of clips, ties.

The second drawer is a bit of an embarrassment! I keep all my makeup which I don't use everyday in here. It really has no organisation at all, and I'm sure I would get much more use out of products I have forgotten about if it were neater, but I quite like uncovering a long-lost cosmetic I'd forgotten about.

The last drawer is definately my favourite. I recently upgraded my nail varnish storage from a old No.7 gift box to this drawer. Before, the pots were over flowing, now having moved them into larger storage, I feel I need to invest in more as my collection only half fills the drawer.

I have various nail varnish brands including Nails Inc, OPI, and Barry M. I'm contemplating continuing the 'whats in my...' series and doing an entire post on all my nail colours; so watch this space.

I hope you enjoyed having a nosey through my drawers, storage posts are one of my favourites to read!

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Bravura London Dermaflannel

I finally got round to using my new Dermaflannel (RRP £11.99) that I got from my birthday. I was slightly intimidated by all the precautions that are included within the instructions, which is why it took me a few weeks to get round to trying out, as I wanted to give it my full attention. This isn't some body scrub you can excessively use in the shower.You'd be surprised how much damage this soft little flannel can cause if used incorrectly.

It's an innovative product from Bravura London, which gives the results of a chemical peel in the comfort of your own home. As well as being very cost effective, it is suitable for people who are unable to undergo chemical treatments, due to pregnancy or medication.

It has a long list of rave reviews from fellow bloggers and on the Bravura London website, and it's easy to see why; With this little flannel you will no longer have to buy expensive exfoliators or face scrubs. It's great for evening out skin tone, improving problem skin and fine lines, it also it great for removing dead skin on knees and elbows, reducing ingrowing hairs and brightening dull skin. In fact it can be used all over the body except the delicate eye and genital areas, and can be used to treat a whole host of skin concerns.

The secret to the success of the Dermflannel is in it's unique weave; It's woven from tiny fibres in a special process which results in it's distinctive appearance. The fine fibres the flannel is composed of allows the surface to deeply cleanse the face and body removing any excess dirt, oil and skin. It's so good at it's job, all you need to add it water!

Before the initial use I washed the flannel by hand with some mild anti-bacterial soap, as recommended on the instruction card. I decided to use it to treat my blocked pores first, as it seemed like the least invasive treatment, so I could get used to how the system would react to my skin. I did a initial gentle cleanse with some Micellar Water and some cotton pads, as my regular cleanser contains Glycolic acid and I didn't want to over exfoliate or stimulate the skin.

I then opened the pores by heating the flannel in hot water, wringing out the excess, then placing it over my face until it had cooled. Once the pores have opened the flannel it swept gently across the effected areas to remove excess dirt and skin from the pores and skins surface.

My skin did tingle for about 10 minutes afterwards and felt slightly more sensitive for about 12 hours afterwards. It is also really important to compensate for the heightened sensitivity skin will experience by wearing at least SPF 15 (I wear SPF 30 in Eucerin Dermo Purifyer)

The blocked pore/blackhead treatment it suitable to do daily, but you really do have to be gentle and only go over the same area no more than twice.

For more information on the conditions Dermaflannel can treat visit the Bravura London website, although a full list of instructions are included with every flannel purchased.

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Whats In My Drawers - Part One

Last week I promised you a 'whats in my drawer' post to continue on from 'whats on my dresser' so here it is!

In the top drawer of my dresser I have my abundance of makeup brushes in a old Glossy Box box. It was actually my first (and last) one, I wasn't very impressed with them...

I have a varied collection of brushes from Real Techniques, mainly for base/ foundation.

The bulk of my brushes are from Illamasqua, but I have a few Fearne Cotton double ended brushes I got a few christmas ago, but have only started using recently.

I also have a few Mac eye brushes and two from The Body Shop as well as a handful from previous jobs.

Along side my brushes I have eye lash curlers, hair ties, some attachments for my hairdryer and in the blue cosmetics bag are bobby pins, hair pins and slides. Talk about organisation!

In the next drawer down is where I keep the camera that I use to take the pictures for my blog.

The final drawer in my dresser is where I keep my IPL and gel nail systems.

I also keep the gel nail colours in here (separate from my regular polish, as they react to UV light)

I only have a small collection currently, but hope to get more soon for the summer.

In the bottom drawer of my bedside table I keep all my college equipment, like my wax-pot, disposable gloves, mani and pedi tools as well as facial and eye treatment products.

Part two of whats in my drawers will be coming next week, if you're not draw-ed out check it out!

What do you keep in your drawers?

Or do you prefer to have everything out where you can see it?

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Whats On My Dresser

I've recently moved back to the town where I grew up (bye bye London), and although I miss many things about living in the city, I have gained a lot more living space returning to Sussex, along with a lovely dresser courtesy of my future Mother in Law.

Up until now I've never been able to do a 'Whats on my dresser' post as my various cosmetics have been scattered around my room or crammed in to a drawer looking like an utter mess, so I thought I'd share my new pride and joy with you :-)

So here it is!

I'm normally a rather messy-room person, but I have taken a lot of time and care into keeping my new dresser tidy. I try to keep only the essentials out as to not cause too much clutter, and it's easier to keep neat that way.

Yes I did make our bed especially for the photos, although in our defence we were up and out quite early as we were car shopping. A hefty investment living in the countryside- no night buses here, sob sob.

My jewellery tree I got from  my Sister in law a few Christmas's ago, and I love it for keeping all my favourite and more delicate pieces on. The red spotty print is right up my street, and I love how I can display my most treasured items without having to constantly wear them.

My best loved pieces are my Pandora bracelet, which almost everyone I love has bought me a charm for; and my 21 heart-key necklace which was a gift for my twenty-first birthday.

These products are the ones I use most regularly, and the cheaper alternatives to products I've used in the past (as I'm trying to save a few pennies). 

I'm not going to expand on what the products are as they are not of great interest; moisturiser/day cream, night cream, face oil, micellar cleansing water, deodorant, vitamins and my one luxury product at the moment- Darphins balm which I apply on my lips before bed for a super nourishing treatment!

My favourite section of my dresser- Fragrances! (Notice the cute little heart dish I also got for my twenty-first, adorable!)

I only have three fragrances as the moment, but I definately want to expand my collection, I love choosing a scent to compliment my mood, my outfit or even the weather!

In my accumulation so far is Benefit - Gina, I'd wished I'd saved the box for this as it's an adorable little house and helps the fragrance last longer. I also have the miniature which is great for my handbag.

Dolce and Gabanna - Intense, which featured in my wishlist post and I ended up treating my self too.

Last but not least Dior - Miss Dior EDT, my Mum bought this for me when she went on holiday at the airport (good ol' Mum) and when I left my old job they gave me the miniature EDP which is in the box behind. It's such a sweet box I should really include a picture of it...

I'm such a sucker for packaging!

I should also quickly mention in the pictures above is a dermaflannel which I got for my birthday but have yet to try out!

Finally the last section of my dresser; my wicker basket.

It has a few odd and ends in it like nail varnish remover and dry shampoo, along with my everyday make up and essentials like cotton pads and buds.

My makeup brushes I keep in a drawer as they caused too much clutter, and I'm going to do another 'whats in my drawers' post so you can have another good old nosey through my stuff!

Where do you keep your everyday go-to items?

Are you a neat freak or are your cosmetics a cluttered chaos?