Saturday, 19 September 2015

My Current Haircare Routine

As I mentioned in my last blog, I have been struggling recently with dry, frizzy hair. I think its due to a combination of a damp summer mixed with air conditioned and heated hospital working. I also have to have my hair tied up for work and I think this has caused some damage recently too :-(.
 I have tried a few different product combinations and have finally discovered one that leaves my hair feeling soft, silky and sleek plus seems to have rectified any damage that has occurred.

I start off by using the John Frieda Luxurious volume touchably full shampoo and conditioner. It is for coloured treated hair as my blonde hair is sadly out of a bottle and not Au Natural. It lathers up brilliantly which I love in a shampoo as I always feel it is cleaned better when you get that luxurious lather. The conditioner leaves my hair feeling soft and easily manageable too, I tend to brush the conditioner through with my tangle teaser to make sure it is evenly distributed and this also gets all the knots out without pulling on the hair. It smells great too, not too strong but just a nice subtle floral scent. My hair just seems to love this combination and believe me I have tried a few recently!

After I have slightly towel dried my hair I put on pump of the Mark Hill MiracOILicious moroccan organ oil through the ends (too much at the roots makes my hair a bit flat and causes it to feel greasy quicker). This product was in my recent Top three products of August blog, and I still love it now. It really does seem to leave my hair feeling shiny, soft and silky.

My next step is to use a heat protector. Coloured hair gets damaged much quicker especially when exposed to heat so I never miss this step as not only do I always blow dry my hair but I tend to straighten my hair after washing, otherwise it gets a bit wild the next morning when I try to style it for work. I have been loving the Schwarzkopf got2b guardian angel 220 degrees heat protection. I have used this product on and off for years after seeing Fleur from Fleur De Force rave about it a number of years ago. I have tried others high end end and drug store in-between but I always come back to this one as it really does feel like it protects my hair amazingly.

Once my hair is dry and straightened I like to spritz it with a bit of hairspray just to keep my fringe in place and stop and fly aways. I had been loving the John Frieda continuous control firm hold hairspray, (featured in my Top 3 Products of July blog) which is definitely a brilliant hairspray. However, I was lured into a new purchase by something new and on offer in Boots. Its the TRESemme expert selection runway collection get sleek hairspray. I have been converted! It is a truly fabulous hairspray. It holds brilliantly but is soft to touch and brushes out easily. The nozzle is slightly different to most hairsprays and acts more like an aerosol deodorant in application, which means you get a more even distribution of product. I would highly recommend trying this product (It will probably feature in my September favourites too!).

Once I have got my style in place I'm good to go, with soft, sleek manageable hair. I am loving the result of this product combination and I recommend anyone struggling in the post Summer to Autumn weather with dry, unmanageable hair to give this combination a try.

I find that washing my hair only once to twice a week helps to reduce damage and frizz , so I like to use the Co-Lab Rio dry shampoo between washes to refresh my hair. It really is the best dry shampoo in my opinion and I no matter how many different ones I try I always come back to it. It does not dry my hair out and really does make it appear fresh.

Thats it for today, until next week. Rachel x

Sunday, 13 September 2015

Look Fantastic Birthday Beauty Box

I have always been a big fan of Look Fantastic, and since the launch one year ago have intermittently purchased they're monthly beauty box. I've always been relatively impressed with them as they generally provide a good selection of products. It was with this in mind that I decided to go for the 1st Birthday beauty box for September.

I was expecting great things with it being a birthday box, but if I'm honest was slightly disappointed. The products included are good quality and are all things that I will use, but I was left a little underwhelmed. They're are no make up products which I find a little disappointing, as I would have thought they'd want to showcase pieces from all of the departments that they stock, especially with it being a special edition box. Nether the less the products are all great quality.

Caudalie vinosource

There are 2 Caudalie products in the box this month, both sample sizes. They are the Vinosource S.0.S Thirst Quenching Serum and the Vinosource Moisturising Sorbet. I have used Caudalie products before and always been impressed with them. I am a big fan of their beauty elixir. These products claim to increase hydration and reduce redness and sensitivity. I have dry skin so am always wiling to try products that aim to hydrate the skin. The weather here in the UK is changing to a lot cooler (not that we've had much of a summer), so will definitely be trying these out this month as my skin may need a little bit of rescuing.

Codage scrubbing cream

This is a brand I have not heard of before, so I am very interested to try this product. Again this is a sample sized product. I have used Philosophy 'micro delivery' peel before, which has a scrub base and loved the results, although found it a little time consuming as you need to use two products. This seems a similar idea, claiming to eliminate dead skin cells and smooth the complexion. I love the feeling you get after exfoliating the skin but always worry it will leave my skin even dryer, so will be interested to see how my skin reacts to this product.

Bliss fabulous foaming facial wash

This is another sample sized product, which would be great to use for traveling. Bliss is a brand that I have heard off but never used any products from them before. I have wanted to try them but they are expensive and I have never heard enough good things about them to take the plunge, so I am excited to see what this is like. It says it's a 2 in 1 cleanser and exfoliator, that removes makeup while gently exfoliating the skin. I'll be interested to see if it really does remove all my make up as I usually have to either use a cleansing oil or balm before a facial wash to ensure that all my make up is removed.

TanWorx Tan Maintainer

This is the only product I probably won't use for what it is intended for. I don't tan (pasty white skin remember!) and I don't have a tan to extend so its not something that I will fully be able to see any results from. I will however probably use it as a moisturiser, as it is made by Monu skincare which I have used their 'skin perfector' moisturiser before and really liked the formulation.

Professional Sebastian shampoo and conditioner

I like the fact you got both the shampoo and conditioner, as I hate it when you just get one or the other as I am a firm believer in using the same shampoo and conditioner combo (not necessarily because they are always better but because my OCD likes me to use the same products!) Again these are sample sizes. I received the strengthen and repair shampoo and conditioner. My hair at the moment is going through a dry, frizzy stage so I am looking forward to trying these and seeing if they can fix my frizz. I have used Sebastian products before and the shine define flexible hairsprays is one of the best I have ever used, I just can't justify the price tag to repurchase it as it is not a cheap brand to buy from.

Phyto Phytokeratine extreme conditioner

This is the only full sized product in the box (at least I think it's full size, if not it is definitely a deluxe sample size). It is a leave in conditioner treatment for dry, damaged hair. You can use it before blow drying as a conditioner treatment and it also provides heat protection for up to 220 degrees. I like the idea of a two in one product that helps repair my hair but also protects it when I blow dry and straighten my hair. I have used Phyto's repair creams before and found them to be brilliant for dry, frizzy hair, so I am pretty sure I am going to really like this product.

That's it for what I received in this months beauty box. It was very skin care and hair care heavy, which isn't a bad thing as I am always wanting to try out new beauty products of any kind, but I am disappointed that they did not mix things up a little more. I did also received a few vouchers worth around £40, for money off different products which was a nice addition as well this month, plus you get 20% of any of the full sized products of the samples received in the box if you want to purchase them after trying them out.

I think next time I get the urge to splurge on a beauty box I will try a different beauty box to Look Fantastic, but they are definitely up they're for one of the best beauty boxes on the market, especially as they don't charge a monthly subscription service or postage. If you fancy giving this box a try they are still available to order from Look Fantastic.

Until next time, Rachel x

Monday, 7 September 2015

Top 3 Products for August

It's the end of the month again! We haven't had much of a summer but I am so excited for Autumn. It is my favourite season, I love it when the leaves start turning and the berry colours which all start popping up around this time of year.

Anyway, back to my top products for August. I have had a fairly quiet month, been really busy at work but I have still had time to find some products I love.

Mark Hill MiracOILicious Moroccan Argan Oil

My hair has been feeling a bit dried out this month, I have been going to the gym a bit more and the humidity combined with this seems to have an adverse reaction on my hair! I picked this up on a whim as it was on offer in Boots (you know how much I love an offer!) I use it after I have washed my hair before drying and styling and it feels amazing! I only use one pump to make sure I don't overload, but a little goes a long long way. It makes my hair feel soft, silky and manageable, which has been brilliant after the gym, especially with the increase washing of hair washing that this incurs! I have used Moroccan Oil before and I think this is a great alternative at a fraction of the price, a great drug store find in my eyes and one I intend to keep using.

Origins Clear Improvements - Active charcoal mask

I think the gym and humidity has had the same effect on my skin as it has on my hair, as it's felt a bit dull and dry. I love the Origins overnight moisture mask, but felt I needed a bit extra now and again, so thought I'd try another of their products in the hope it would have the same effect, and it did! I've been using this once or twice a week dependant on how my skins feeling (and how much time I have) and it really has made a big difference. I have had less break outs and my skin has been looking glowy and fresh. It is a bit messy to use as it is very thick and obviously black in colour, so make sure you don't use it near anything white (a mistake I made initially, but it does wash out easily), it dries relatively quickly and washes off easily. I am really impressed with this product, another 5 star from Origins and I will definitely be on the look out for more Origins products to try as we go into Autumn and Winter to keep my skin in great condition.

Seventeen Falsiefeye HD Mascara

I saw a review on this ages ago by Wayne Goss (Goss Makeup Artist on YouTube) but never got round to trying it out. He raved about how amazing it was for a drug store mascara at lengthening lashes and giving great volume. I wanted to try a new mascara as I often like to switch about, as I think I have a bit of a mascara addiction. I was browsing in Boots where they had an offer on Seventeen products, so thought I would give it a go. It is AMAZING! Not only does it give great length but it lasts all day at work without flaking. I am obsessed with it (and even went and bought it in brown as well). If you are after an affordable drug store mascara that it brilliant, I recommend giving this a try! A five star product at an affordable price, thanks Wayne!

That's it for another month of top products! Looking forward to Autumn and seeing what September has to bring.

Rachel x