Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Top Tips for Dewy Skin

Product #1 - Natural Aqua Gel Cure
The first step is smoothing your skin's texture with a gentle, non-abrasive exfoliant. You want to remove as much of the dead skin cells without damaging your healthy cells. You can literally see the dead skin cells fall away with this product, and all natural too!

Product #2 - Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion
Hyaluronic Acid naturally occurs in the body, mostly concentrated in the eyes, lips and skin. It's function is to bind to water and act as a lubricant. High levels in the skin is smoothing, elastic and plumped. It can be found in many skincare and cosmetic products, this lotion being being my personal favourite.

Product #3 - Clarins Beauty Flash Balm
Next step; prime. Finding a product suitable for your skin type is essential, but for those with dry to normal skin this balm will give you a shimmer-free glow and prepare a smooth base for makeup. Apply like a lotion onto the face, before makeup, and allow 5 minutes for it to settle into the skin. You'll also get longer wear out of the makeup you apply on top.

Product #4 - Mac Fix+ spray
This spray is a staple in my kit as it's so versatile. You can spray it onto a moisturised face in place of a primer, or on top of makeup to seal and merge makeup layers, or spritz at the end of the day to freshen your tired makeup. Play around with a combination of all 3 techniques to get the most out of the beautiful, subtle sheen it leaves.

Product #5 - Creme products
To maximise the healthy glow, avoid powder and go for liquids and cremes instead. I even use Burts Bees lip shimmer on my cheeks! It's 100% natural, and the closest thing I've found to replicate the natural flush of blood beneath the skin. Colours from left to right - Apricot, Rhubarb, Plum.

Monday, 1 April 2013

Skin - Best way to moisturise, nourish and heal your skin all over.

Having always had very dry and sensitive skin, prone to eczema and psoriasis, I grew up being rather obsessive about moisturising. During the winter especially I would get insanely itchy skin after showering, I had seen different doctors but the creams I had prescribed had a horrible smell, didn't prove to be very effective, and were also full of steroids etc, so I avoided them. When you're moisturising your whole body you need to be careful what your body is absorbing.

Your skin always feels most supple and moisturised whilst you are in the shower, then when you dry off this is where you are most dry, as your natural oils are stripped from soap and warm water. As baby oil advertise their products, you need to 'lock in' the moisture whilst your skin is still wet. But after using baby oil for a while I noticed that it was simply moisturising temporarily - no added goodness to help rebuild your moisture barrier long term or feed your skin. This can be risky and you can feel that your skin really relies on the product, reducing it's own natural oil production so if you stop using the product, it can feel worse than before you started.

I'd read a lot about olive oil being good for the skin so I tried that - amazing. Definitely more moisturising than baby oil and it really fed my skin, resulting in long term moisturisation and a beautiful glow. Since I was so happy with the results I was keen to find out more about the different oils available.

Now living in Istanbul, Turkey, organic and natural beauty products are affordable and plentiful. You can find a shop on every corner where they sell a massive variety of different soaps and oils. This helped me to hone in and learn exactly what ingredient helps with what skin concern*:

Carrier oils - Can be used alone or mixed with essential oils. Fully absorbs.

Tamanu oil - All skin types. Penetrates all 3 layers of the skin. Skin healing and due to ability to produce new skin cell tissue it reduces scarring, including acne scars. Also used as a natural deodorant as reduces body odour. Antibiotic, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory properties, promoting blemish free skin and helping skin conditions such as psoriasis.
Rosehip oil - Great for sun damage; shown to fade sun spots almost completely - also helps to reduce signs of ageing, especially fine lines around eyes and mouth because very high levels of linoleic and linolenic fatty acids.
Aloe vera oil - Great for sensitive skins, about the same ph as skin and hypo-allergenic - relieves dryness, rich and nourishing but soothing and cooling - Encourage skin rejuvenation, sun protection treatment and of sunburn, blood circulation, reduces scarring, anti-inflammatory.
Calendula oil - Helps any sore, inflamed, itchy skin conditions: eczema, cracked nipples. Used to treat thread and spider veins as well as varicose veins.
Hazelnut oil - Great moisturising. Firm and tighten the skin, strengthening capillaries and assisting in cell regeneration.
Macadamia oil - Very emollient so great for dry and ageing skin - helps to replace sebum that aged skins produce less of.
Coconut oil - Make sure you get the pure virgin coconut oil, otherwise the cheaper versions can solidify at body temperature and block your pores. Comes either as a solid cold pressed oil or semi solid.  General skin health with vitamins and high fat content so very moisturising. Contains antioxidants so repair damage, treats sunburn. Natural spf protection (4-10 factor) Best kept in fridge.
Wheatgerm oil - Nutty aroma. Too sticky and heavy consistency to use alone so needs to be mixed with another carrier oil. Relieves dermatitis symptoms, promotes new skin cell formation, improves blood circulation, reduces scarring and sun damage.
Grape seed oil - Fine, light, easily absorbed, best kept in fridge. Great moisturising. Mildly tones and tightens, and regenerative and restructuring properties.
Pomegranate seed oil - Deeply penetrating, full of antioxidants so protects skin from harmful aspects of environment. Strengthens the epidermis, improves elasticity
Sesame oil - Can be strong smelling but good source of vits and mins. Thick oil, best mixed to make it lighter. Very moisturising, helps conditions such as eczema, peoriasis. Great for older mature skin and for fading blemishes.
Apricot oil - Fine, easily absorbd, no oily feeling, slightly warming. Brightening/ radiant glow so perfect for face. Especially for dehydrated, delicate, mature or sensitive skins, soothes inflammation. Revitalising. Best kept in fridge
Argan oil - Anti ageing, dry or dehydrated skin, as well as oily skin (regulates the sebum secretion) Good for treatment of skin inflammatory diseases like acne and psoriasis. Strengthens nails and smoothes cuticles. Well absorbed, no oily residue.
Sweet almond oil - my staple go-to oil, spreads easily, nourishing, for all skin types. Balances loss and absorption of moisture, softening and soothing. Relieves irritation, inflammation and itching.
Avocado oil - One of the most penetrating, rich in vits. Often for dry or mature skin, and treating sun or climate damaged skin that is dehydrated and undernourished, as helps to regenerate the skin and soften the tissue. Also used for eczema or psoriasis.
Olive oil - Acidity levels range from 0.2% - 2, the less acid the better.
Cocoa oil - Reduces stress marks and other scars. We all know cocoa butter is great for smoothing out any uneven skin tone so it's the same result with the oil.
Emu oil - Very penetrating moisturisation. Anti-inflammatory properties so good for psoriasis, rosacea, eczema. Stretch marks, chapped lips,hypo-allergenic, can reduce wrinkles.
Jojoba oil - One of the most powerful natural healers - full of vitamins and promotes growth of new cells. Removes stretch marks, gets rid of wrinkles and its antibacterial, so great for acne.

Essential oils - Cannot be used neat! To be diluted with carrier oils; no more than 10 drops of essential oil per 20ml of carrier oil.

Cinnamon oil - Suitable for allergic and sensitive skins, calming soothing.
Rose oil  - Good for sensitive skins, rebuilding skins protective barrier.
Vanilla oil  - Great for the face, helps removes scars.
Sage oil  - Reduces pore size, psoriasis, dermatitis, stops dispersion of acne.
Juniper oil - Healing eczema and itchy skin conditions
Strawberry oil - Tones skin, lightens freckles, helps fight wrinkles.
Jasmine oil - Reduces stretch marks and other scarring
Bergamot oil - Kills germs so stops dispersion of acne.
Kiwi oil - Maintains skins moisture balance and preventing drying and scaling. Great anti ageing, and for lips and hair.
Daisy oil - Deep toning properties - used especially to firm the bust area, also enhancing texture and suppleness  - apply morning and evening and you will notice results in 3-4 weeks.
Carrot seed - Soft earthy smell. Powerful detoxifier, fighting skin problems - psoriasis, eczema. Stimulates and rejuvenating the skin in general, thereby adding elasticity to any skin. Keeps wrinkles at bay and flights age spots.
Fennel oil - Used for general skincare - livens dull complexions, disperses bruises, removes cellulite, clears excess oily from oily skins, fighting wrinkles (due to estrogenic properties of oil).

Along with using oils in place of moisturising creams, I also eat a lot more fresh olive oil - (I think this is the secret to the French's gorgeous skin). Drinking lots of water, and keeping your showers/baths as cold and short as possible are other ways you can avoid dry and dehydrated skin.

Let me know if you've tried it and what results you've had; always happy to hear your thoughts! :)

*I want to add that I have not personally tried and tested each ingredient against each concern, but from the oils I have tried I wholeheartedly recommend -I now often receive compliments about my skin when I never used to!

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Colour Analysis - a growing concept

I've only recently understood fully the ins and outs of colour analysis, when I had my own colour palette analysed the other day :) I'd heard about this concept but never expected the extent to which the exact types of colour can be identified and the difference it would make to your overall appearance.

The idea is to have the colour palette you wear, either with makeup, hair or clothes, to compliment and enhance your individual palette. We've all remembered somebody for the colour they were wearing - "that lady with the blue blouse…red hair… green trousers…" This is where the incorrect colours were worn, overpowering and distracting from their natural features. When the correct colours are worn, people first notice you as a whole image, focusing on your eyes and mouth which is instinctively the ideal.

You probably already have an idea about the colours that suit you best, so having the professional analysation helps to click everything into place; confirming a lot of what you already know, and expanding into the all important details.

So how does it work? Over some tea and biscuits we began to explore my sense of colour and style. The colour analyst, Oya Komar, was asking me questions such as "Do you tend to wear patterns or block colours? Gold or silver accessories? Defined liquid liner or smudged pencil?" We then made our way to the analysis room - the large windows allowed for plenty of sunlight and the walls were a fresh, clean white, with one wall lined with many different-coloured pieces of fabric. I sat in the chair in front of a mirror, and after my hair and clothes were covered with fabric of the same clean white and any makeup colours removed, Oya began to layer different cool and warm shades of fabric on my collar area. Reflections created on my neck and face is what determines which category is suited to me. Cool tones were giving a harsh, metallic-like hue to my skin, whereas the warm tones were livening my natural skin tone. But it's not as simple as red being a warm and blue being a cold colour.. Cool colours are those that lack yellow, and the warm are those where you can see the yellow undertone. So egg yolk = warm yellow and sunshine = cool yellow.

Then to distinguish between the clear, bold colours or muted colours. The main difference here is whether the colours are overpowering your natural tone or complimenting. Bold colours drowned out my complexion, making my skin look more tired and sallow, whereas the muted colours seemed to even my complexion, minimising the need for foundation and blush.

The next step was determining the best level of intensity. This is where Oya's well trained eye came most in handy. We layered different depths of a warm, muted colour, finding that darker shades were best for me. Breaking up light and dark colours is a great way to achieve the correct depth of colour for yourself.

There are 4 categories in total, named after each season.

Spring = Bold, Warm

Summer = Muted, Cool

Autumn = Muted, Warm

Winter = Bold, Cool

I left my session with a mound of new information relevant being an Autumn girl. A follow up email laid out everything I needed to know with images to refer to.

The Season that you belong to tells us a lot more than just your colour palette. Preferred structures, materials, finishes, makeup styles etc can also be read, here are some examples:

Bold = Block colours, defined eyeliner, leather, all over hair colour.
Muted = Patterns, smokey eyes, suede, highlights.

But colour analysis is not just for individual use; It is used globally in many different sectors that involve style of any form. For example, the film industry can represent a characters negative mood by selecting the incorrect colours to drain the colours in the face, making him/her look gloomy or dishevelled. Many Fashion Designers rely on Colour Analysis information to produce their garments, understanding that if they correlate the structure, finish and materials with the correct colour group, they will sell more.

Thanks for reading, why don't you have a play with the colour groups and drop me a comment for which Season you think you belong to? :) Best wishes to you all. X

Colour Analysist: Oya Komar
Personal Website: www.colourfit.com
Location: Istanbul, Turkey (fluent in English)

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Product Review - DJV Beautenizer Fiberwig Mascara

Thank you cultbeauty.co.uk for posting me this amazing mascara to try! It definitely lives up to its expectations as being different to all the other mascaras out there...

Here's my full review with a demonstration.

I rated it a total of 8/10.

Thanks for watching! xo

Saturday, 11 February 2012

How to Take a Makeup Look from Day to Evening in Simple Steps

Here's another video displaying a few effective steps in how to glam up your day look for the evening, saving you having to wash off and start fresh. Here I am wearing the day look from my other video - 'How to Create a Daytime Makeup look in 5 Simple Steps'.

If you have combination to dry skin I definitely recommend spritzing a moisture spray on top of your day look to freshen the base. [Try Mac Fix+ spray for combination and Clinique Moisture Surge Face Spray for more moisture]

All products used (except mascara) were by New id Cosmetics:

  • i-finish powder [powder foundation matching your skin tone]
  • i-shadow quad compact in 'Blackberry Berry'
  • i-glow in 'Sirocco' [soft shimmer highlighter]
  • i-gel in 'Graphite' [gel eyeliner, trio of colours]
  • i-line in 'Black' [pencil eyeliner]
  • Clinique High Impact Mascara
  • i-conceal concealer for lips
  • i-plump lipgloss [plumping]

Friday, 10 February 2012

How to Create a Daytime Makeup Look in 5 Simple Steps

Here's a video I made to lay out the simple but important basics to creating a day to day makeup look, flattering all skin tones and skin types.

All products used (except mascara and lip balm) were by New id Cosmetics.

Product List:
  • i-conceal [concealer]
  • i-glow 'sirocco' [soft shimmer highlighter]
  • i-bronze [bronzer for contour]
  • i-groom [brow defining pencil]
  • i-line 'soft brown' [pencil eyeliner]
  • Clinique High Impact Mascara
  • Rose and Almond Oil Tinted Vaseline

Monday, 7 November 2011

My Miracle Product - Advanced Night Repair by Estée Lauder

If I am grateful for learning anything at Estée Lauder, it's Advanced Night Repair; a beauty must-have which I describe as a multivitamin for your skin.

How to use:

It's a serum you wear every night (or anytime you're about to sleep), underneath your nighttime moisturiser. Spread and stipple the serum all over the face and neck, avoiding the eye area (there is formula especially for the eye which is also great - ANR Eye). The thin, almost watery texture of the serum allows for deeper penetration in your skin layers. Apply your moisturiser as normal.

Although it is classed as an anti-aging product, it is suitable for any age and any skin concern, as your skin will only repair what is needed. I advise starting young to invest in great skin once it has matured.

Science behind the product:

The environment is one of the biggest factors that contributes to the aging of our skin. Pollution, sun damage, also factors like stress etc all damage our skin cells and slow down the rate in which our skin repairs itself. Advanced Night Repair helps to:

a. Neutralise 90% of the free radicals before they can cause damage
b. Exclusive Chronolux Technology boosts our natural repair rate to erase past damage by helping our skin cells get in sync
c. Hyaluronic acid acts as a moisture magnet to lock in hydration


You'll see an improvement in lines and wrinkles, skin tone (discolouration marks, sun spots, age spots, even scarring) and hydration; which is exactly what I saw - since using ANR I haven't woken up with lifeless or dull skin, even if I'd only had a couple of hours sleep! I also have a horrible habit where I stretch the side of my mouth and chew on my gum (it's got to the point where I don't even know I'm doing it anymore!) As well as it being an ugly looking habit, it caused me to have discoloured skin around my mouth. After a week of using ANR the discolouration had gone!

Considering the product is rated 4.8 stars out of 5 from the online reviews, it seems I'm not the only one in love with Advanced Night Repair!


£41 for 30ml (about 4 months use)
£54 for 50ml (about 7 months use)