Tuesday, 31 May 2016

New Palmers Coconut Oil Range

It looks like everyone is still going nuts about coconuts. I drink it, cook with it, add a teaspoon to my smoothies, use it for pulling (to whiten teeth, not to meet men), apply it to dry skin...the list goes on. As coconuts make you beautiful, inside and out, it was only a matter of time until the super food was added to beauty products. Growing up in an Indian family of mostly women, coconut products are not a new addition to my beauty life - there was always a bottle of Coconut, Almond, or Jasmine oil in the house, my dad even bought a crate of Vatika Coconut Oil (to grow hair) when I went for the Alexa Chung chop as a subtle hint that he hated it.

The latest brand to launch a range of coconut oil products is Palmers who of course are famous for thier Cocoa Butter. This Coconut Oil Formula Range consists of a Body Cream, Body Lotion, Body Oil, and Hand Cream. They are all formulated from ethically and sustainably sourced raw, organic coconut oil, and also infused with ancient Polynesian sacred oil, a Tahitian Monoi oil which contains Antioxidents, Vitamin E and Protiens to help boost the skins health and radiance. A what is also great about the products is that they are free from Parabens, phthalate, mineral oil, and dyes. 

Coconut Oil Body Lotion - £4.00

This is the coconut version of the famous cocoa butter. It has a similar scent and milky texture. Without doubt this stuff will soften your skin. It's definietly creamier that your average body lotion and leaves skin feeling super nourished for up to 24 hours. 

Coconut Oil Formula Body Cream - £7.00

This body cream is for people with really dry skin. It's thick, and once applied, cocoons the body, making it feel warm and soft. I would never apply it during the day as it is definitely too heavy. I probably would in the winter if my skin was particularly dry, or after sun pampering of you ant wait until then. The high content of Urea will pamper the and deeply condition skin, leaving it glowing. I really like this product but I don't think I would use it unless I was a having problematic skin moment. 

Coconut Oil Hand Cream - £2.40

This is a reasonably priced every day hand cream. For those who have dry/cracked hands, this is great because it has a glove like protective barrier which locks in moisture for 24 hours and transforms skin making it set and smooth.

Body Oil - £7.00

I have become obsessed with this body oil. It smells more like sweet almond oil than coconut oil which reminds me of summer, and for some strange reason, cake. It's SO nice, I love it. The silky texture is not oily at all as its a dry oil so it absorbs straight into the skin. Due to the fact that it's a dry oil, it doesn't make the skin feel as instantly soft as the body lotion and cream, it hydrates the skin, and feels as if it penetrates deeper. Again, I use this at night, and after a few days use I noticed a huge difference to the texture and elaciticy of my skin, it was glowing, smooth, and felt really healthy. The oil can also be used in the shower and bath. 

If you're a fan of Palmer's you will not be disappointed, but if you're not a fan, you will plea sly surprised about how great these products are, especially the oil. It's not an extravagant product.

Available from Boots, and Superdrug

Thursday, 26 May 2016

New Chanel Le Gel Coat and Le Vernis Nail Colour

Chanel have always been major in the manicure game due to iconic shades such as Rouge Noir and limited edition colours like Jade flying off the shelves in minutes. As one of the first luxury beauty brands to offer exclusive, limited edition colours that wouldn't normally be associated with the French beauty aesthetic, they pushed boundaries, and pretty much dictated the nail trends each season. I can honestly say that I was there. I watched the catwalks, and then waited, impatiently, for the new collection to be revealed so that I could wear colours like Coco Blue (pale blue) and Mimosa (yellow) years before they we copied by every brand on the high street.

The latest product from Chanel have taken their famous nail polishes to the next level by introducing Le Gel Coat top coat which keeps nails chip free for up to 6 weeks. It contains an oligomer which is activated by natural light (sunlight) for an ultra glossy finish which is shock resistant and reduces chipping. Great news for you home manicurists out there - no need to invest in a UV light, this top coat dries instantly. 

Chanel have also reinvented 11 of their classic Le Vernis Nail Polishes with a new look and new packaging. The colours are intense - they have been created using using selected pigments, which are finely ground and captured for an even application. The nail polish is also rich in bioceramic, and ceramides which cares for the nails to reinforce hardness and improve the quality. 

I have applied two layers of Le Vernis today and it's intense. It's slightly thicker than the usual Chanel nail polishes so you only need one coat. I applied two out of habit, but it hasn't made much difference. On the first application, make sure you remove excess product off the brush or else you will end up with a pool of polish as it dries super fast and it's difficult to rectify any mistakes. I applied the Le Gel top coat after, which is so easy to apply - it dries almost instantly, comes on super smooth and makes nail polish look amazing and shiny. I applied it to one had only so I can test its chipping resistant out. It's been 3 days, and so far so good.

Le Gel Coat - £18 and Le Vernis £18

 Available now from Chanel, and Department Stores Nationwide.

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Kiko Summer Trend Collection

The When I saw the new Summer Trend collection from Kiko, it made me think of adventures in faraway lands - Aqua oceans, fluorescent flowers, and sun-kissed holiday skin which glows like the sunset. Seriously, this collection has everything you need for your summer vacation... And even if you stay in the city, you can still look like you've jumped of the plane straight from Tulum. 

First of all let's talk about the packaging. The lightweight rose gold design was created by futurist designer Ross Lovegrove which are like miniature sculptures borrowed from buildings, to mimic the curves of a woman's body. This instantly recognisable trademark design by the designer is dedicated to those who have a desire for adventure. Therefore, it's not just pretty to look at, the features such as the magnetic lipstick lids, and the curves of the applicators for a tighter grip, have all been designed to be used on the go. 

The makeup itself is everything you need for your summer look. Bronzes with golden and coral accents to highlight and accentuate tans, pink, red and plum lipsticks, and bronze, and Aqua eye makeup. 

Here are a few of my favourites 

Desert Dune Baked Bronzer £22.90

This bronzer has actually been baked so that its application is super fine and light. It comes in two shades - Warm Melange, and Sienna Melange. It smells like Vanilla and enriched with Jojoba oil so that it doesn't dry out the skin. It can be used all over the face and more concentrated on the cheeks and nose.

Desert Dunes Trio Baked Blush £16.90

This is also baked and infused with Jojoba oil and available in three shades - Lust Coral, Gypsy Pink, and Impulsive Mauve. The shades can be used individually or blended together to highlight the cheekbones and skin. 

Sunshine DD Cream SPF 30 £12.90

This DD cream is the latest evolution in the BB and CC game. It has an SPF and daily defence action for anti agening. Coverage is buildable. Available in 4 shades.

In the Shade Kajal £9.50

These highly pigmented eyeshades can line the eyes or blend to for an eyeshadow or smokey eye. They are soft and stay on all day. They come in 6 colours but my favourite has got to be 03 Turquoise and Pearly Brown.

Mirage Lip Stylo £10.90 

The innovative formulas or special waxes and pigments glide on easily and last all day. They are available in 8 shades.

Free Spirit Lips and Cheeks £9.90 and Heatwave Lip Oil £10.90

The Free Spirit Lip and Cheek oil is versatile and brightens the complexion with a healthy glow. For lips it's buildable, and for cheeks it can be blended easily. The lip oil is a nourishing treatment which leaves lips hydrate and bright. It makes lips glossy but not sticky.

Other products like the Kabuki Face Brush, the rose gold Clutch and the Perfume are also available in the collection.

Available from stores nationwide and Kiko 

Monday, 16 May 2016

Liha Beauty

Made in Hackney. Now that's something we never hear when talking about skincare. I randomly discovered Liha Beauty when I met one of its founders, Abi at a non beauty related party. A natural skincare brand that is not only made in the UK, it's made in my very own postcode (and Cheltenham too) is probably one of my most exciting discoveries of this year. 

East London is not new to the beauty game, its home to cool brands like Bleach London, and WAH Nails, who have defined the east London disheveled, rock n roll look. What's great and different about Liha Beauty is, it's clean, organic, and natural aesthetic, which I think is progressive when it comes to not only beauty, but trends too. Hipster beauty for grown ups - kind of the beauty version of artisan bread, cold brew coffee, and craft beer, because let's face it, not all of us who live in East London want to look like we've just dragged ourselves out of a warehouse rave at 9am! 

Liha Beauty was founded by London born ex Olympian Athlete Abi Oyeitan, and her friend Liha Okunniwa who is Cheltenham based. They have been experimenting with hand made products for years, using traditional Yoruban (their African home town) and natural products such as Shea Butter, coconut oil, Jojoba, and Essential Oils which at the time were not as readily available as they are today. As thier home made products became popular amongst their friends they decided to bottle them up, and sell them to the public - yay! 

Out of the four products that they currently sell, I tried out the Idan Oil which is the Yoruban word for magic. It's made with natural, cold pressed coconut oil, infused with Tuberose which has been natural processed in a traditional African way. It's magic because it can be used anywhere on the skin - face, body, hands, feet, and even hair. I would reccomend leaving it on overnight as it leaves skin and hair looking and feeing super soft in the morning. All you have to do is warm the bottle in your hands of under a tap to melt the solidified oil. You only need a few drops because it's highly concentrated. I personally found the scent too intense for my face, so have been using it on my skin at night, which feels so good. The smell is so beautiful you can even wear it as a perfume by adding a few drops to your pulse points.

I really love this stuff, and can't wait to try the rest of the collection.
Available from Liha Beauty and Liberty 

Thursday, 12 May 2016

Bare Minerals Skin Longevity Serum

Kiss goodbye to Kale, the Long Life Herb is here, and it's packed with antioxidents that will not only make you look younger, it will make you glow like a goddess. Skincare brand Bare Minerals who champion natural skin, have turned to an area called Okinawa (Island of Long Life) part of the Japanese Islands, where women thrive and live longer than any other place in the world. 

Before you book your flight, don't worry, you can buy this stuff in a bottle. The new Skin Longevity Vital Power Infusion is a new Serum from Bare Minerals which is infused with the Long Life Herb - the first of its kind which unleashes skin's vitality, youthful resilience, and radiance. Its powered by SkinMimtic Technology to empower your skins luminosity, replensih, renew, and fortify against signs of ageing. The vitamin rich coastal soil herb that local residents in Okinawa thrive on has a higher mineral and vitamin content than our favourite superfood, Kale, which helps enhance the skin making it look younger and more radiant. It also contains Californian Poppy, and Lemouyang Ginger extracts which help to reduce fine lines and wrinkles. 

We all know that the Japanese anti age game is so strong - green tea, soya, fish, vegetables, as well as lifestyle. These are all a big part of their culture, and contributes massively to younger looking skin, and life expectancy. The Japanese always look younger than their actual age, it's incredible. Bare Minerals have taken these factors into consideration when creating new skincare products. Beautiful skin needs to come from within, which is what the brand is all about - enhancing your natural skin to make it glow, rather than covering it up with makeup. This sounds daunting, even to me who has good skin, as I do love foundation. Before I reveal my foundationless face to the world, I have to be super confident about how my skin looks, but I totally get it, skin needs to look like skin, so this all does come down to your skincare.

I have been using this for a couple of weeks now, not long enough to know if it has lasting effects, but I have dinintely noticed that my skin looks naturally smooth and seems to be glowing from within, rather than its surface. Use one or two pump to apply on clean skin before your moisturiser. It's light, absorbed easily into skin without leaving any residue and has a subtle citrus scent. Makeup applied on top looks really great as the serum keeps skin looking super hydrated and glowy. If you're a kale fan, I would definitly get some of this Long Life Herb in your life. 


Available 2nd June from Debenhams
16th June from Bare Minerals and Department Stores Nationwide 

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Scrubbing up

I think pretty much everyone I know was freaking out about getting their legs out during last weekends heatwave. It was amazing, and such a liberating feeling to not wear tights, but the first day of exposure, the big reveal, is always terrifying.

The only way to get over this fear is by making sure you are prepped weeks before the summer finally hits. So, now is the time. By prep, I mean exfoliating, moisturising, and fake tanning, if needed. Fake tanners, as you know, exfoliating the skin to silky smooth perfection is the most important part of your routine, to eliminate streaks and a patchy finish. Of course if you're not tanning, and have naturally dark skin like me, the winter and lack of Vitamin D can still make your skin look dull, so this is a perfect way to refine, and resurface skin, making it glow.

There are many exfoliators on the market, but I always go back to my original, and super reliable Salt Scrub by Sanutuary Spa. Out of all of the body scrubs I have used, and there are many, this has got to be my ultimate favourite. It's fairly cheap, available from Boots and the pot is so huge, it will last you at least 6-8 months. This scrub contains Dead Sea Salt, wrapped in Jojoba oil, coconut oil, and sweet almond oil to transform your skin instantly. It smells amazing and will last all day.

The texture is rough, thick and very oily. You need to give it a good shake, or mix when opened or else the oil rises to the surface and you will probably have to shovel the salt out in a few months. As mentioned earlier, it smells incredible and the oil feels so good on the skin. The salt crystals are super hard to touch, but they do exactly what they're meant to. The salt is thick and hard but the richness of the oil will counteract the salt texture to give you a perfect balance for perfect skin. All you need to do is massage in circular movements onto damp skin concentrating on the areas that need it most. The almond and coconut oil absorb quickly and soften skin, and the Jojoba oil, a light and natural emollient is said to mimic the action of sebum to promote a radiant complexion. The sea salt removes dead skin cells, which improves the cell turnover.

I used mine this morning and my skin looks and feels amazing. I'm a regular exfoliator and have been using anther (expensive) brand the last few months and today I can see and feel the difference. As soon as I got out of the shower my skin, especially my legs looked like they had lost a layer (gross) as they looked glowy, soft and the skin looked smother and tighter. Use twice a week or every other day (in moderation) over the summer. 


Available from Boots and Sanctuary 

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Magic and the Moonlight - Suti Skincare

'Everything is energy' - Einstein

I do yoga, try to meditate, own a lot of crystals, love the moon, and believe in the power of the universe. It's kind of a cliche... but these days, you don't have to be an avocado eating, unicorn loving bohemian to be spiritual. If you search any of these hashtags on Instgram, there does seem to be a mystical movement going on alongside the clean living/eating trend. Being healthy and in touch with your true self, and your environment has a lot to do with nature. One way people can connect is through through the Earth's natural resources - plants, flowers, and crystals. The crystals hold properties that vibrate and resonate to frequencies that can help with healing and aligning the chakras. They have been used for centuries, and today, even celebrities such as Victoria Bekham, and Miranda Kerr carry them. Every crystal has a vibration that works with your own chemistry to help restore your body's highest potential, so if you apply this healing power to skincare, there's magic there that would probably turn the most sceptical people into believers.

I discovered Suti Skincare in Whole Foods a few months ago through organic skincare specialist Donna Ryan. Suti Skincare is a British Organic Skincare brand based on Energy Healing. Each ingredient is carefully selected for its unique, nourishing, and energetic properties to help improve,refine the appearance and feel of your skin. The range contains the finest organic essential oils, while working the energy of Reiki, crystals, the moon cycle and flower essences. They have dedicated Clear Quartz Crystals that work specifically with each product. Physically Clear Quartz Crystal has a high silica content, which is fundamental to skin, energetically it works with the whole body, reputed to purify, amplify and send healing to where it is needed.

Donna reccomended I try two of their products, Nourish Face Oil for Night (£39) and the Facial Cleansing Balm (£33). 

The Organic Face Oil contains Avacado Oil, Macadamia Nut Oil, Jasmine and Patchouli to heal, replenish and rehydrate the skin. Also, Macadamia and Geranium balance the production of sebum for a healthy glow, Argan oil calms, and Apricot Kernel promotes elasticity. The Energetic Intuition of this oil is 'Stillness' as it creates balance for rest, release, and renew, promoting skin to transform as you sleep. The flower associated to this oil is Jasmine, the Goddess of the night sky which like your skin, illuminates the darkness. I found this product to be really intense and thick compared to other night oils I have used from other brands. It does blend in easily, and leaves the skin feeling nourished and soft. It takes a while to get used to because the smell is quite strong, but the benefit is that you don't need much, just a couple of drops will cover your entire face and neck. I started using this at the same time as another oil and I could feel and see the difference in the Suti one in quite a dramatic way - the Suti face oil leaves skin looking and feeling amazing. The oil makes skin glowy, soft, and youthful. I also noticed how good it was compared to other leading organic brands once it ran out, my skin hasn't looked the same since.

The Facial Cleansing Balm's Energetic Intention is 'Purification' for release and renewal. This stuff is insane! The smell is so intoxicatingly good, I got a little obsessed by it. Every time I used it I would have to inhale it before I applied it like some sort of sick junkie! It contains Lime, Geranium, Avacado, Sunflower and Apricot Kernal Oil. The texture, as you can see below is thick and lumpy, but once applied to the skin, it rapidly melts and glides on, easily removing all traces of makeup - even black eye makeup. If I had to choose between these two products, I would definitely go with the cleansing balm as its unlike anything I have used before. It feels home made, yet the results are really powerful. The Avacado, Apricot Kernal, Sunflower, and Shea Butter intensively nourish, protect and replenish as well as removing dead skin cells. The Olive Oil smooths and calms inflammation, as well as tightening pores.

I would highly reccomend Suti Skincare as its mostly organic, and has a romantic/mystical ethos behind it. If you don't believe in any of the magic, and hippy stuff, I still think you should try it out anyway, as the products I used do what they say on the tin - they smell great, feel good and make you look healthy and glow. I feel like I haven't even covered half of what they do as I needed to keep my word count down. Check them out and let me know what you think.

Available from Whole Foods and Suti Skincare