Sunday, 17 June 2012

Caudalíe Merlot Friction Scrub

I am forever on the hunt for a good scrub. Being somewhat cursed with slightly dry skin means I require an exfoliator that does exaclty what it says on the tin/tub/jar/bottle. So whilst sorting out through my things, I came across this little beauty, the Caudalíe Merlot Friction Scrub.

The website describes this scrub as "mint butter" which "tones and shapes up whilst energising, reducing tension, leaving your skin silky and firm". I thought this is exactly what I need! Needless to say, I was rather disappointed when I found, after several uses, that my skin was not silky. Nor was it energised or firm. And I'm not sure how I would detect a scrub's ability at reducing tension, but it definitely didn't do that (it more likely increased after I became so disappointed by it).

Compared to the other popular scrub by Caudalie, the Crushed Cabernet Scrub, this one is not very coarse and, as mentioned above, has more of a buttery texture. In fact, once it hits your damp skin, it melts. At this point I realised that I'm just covering my body in a minty-esque film that does nothing to improve my skin tone.

The only thing I like about the product is the jar. Yeah, that's about it. It's a nice jar - I'll definitely find a use for it in the kitchen! Aestheitics aside, this is not something I recommend especially when it costs £21.50 for 150g (£14.33 per 100g) that does absolutely nothing to improve tone and texture. Considering Caudalie is such a high end brand, I was really expecting it to work wonders - talk about a let down!


Guess the hunt continues...

July Magazine Beauty Freebies!

Maybe it's because I'm Asian (the Southern variety) that I'm a sucker for a good bargain. I really like to get my money's worth - and that's exactly what I did when I was perused the magazine section in Tesco the other day!

I love trying out new things and beauty products is no exception to my curiosity. The only problem with beauty products is that they can end up being very expensive. Buying a full sized product at retail price can not only be costly but very disappointing if it's not what you hoped for. Hence why I love monthly glossies - they give you the chance to check out the brand that you'd be hesitant to buy in normal circumstances.

So I ended up picking three magazines: InStyle, Marie Claire and Glamour.

First up is InStyle (featuring Cameron Diaz on the cover) which cost £3.90. This month they are offering two choices - either The Body Shop Big And Curvy Mascara (worth £10) or two of The Body Shop Eye Definers (in Black and Navy, worth £8 each). What's great about this is that you're getting full sized products so it's fantastic value for money. I opted for the mascara because I have so many eyeliner pencils already. After flicking through the mag I noticed it contained a sachet sample of the new L'Oréal Hair Expertise EverPure Shampoo & Conditioner.

Next is Marie Claire (featuring Eva Mendes), £3.70. They're offering a free, full sized Ciaté Nail Polish (worth £9) in three shades. I ended up going for the bright pink shade "jelly bean". Inside you'll also get a sample of L'Oréal Hair Expertise EverPure Shampoo & Conditioner. You can also get a whiff of L'Homme by Yves Saint Laurent (nice of them to consider the lads in this one!).

Finally it's Glamour (featuring either Fearne Cotton, Eva Longoria or Kylie Minogue) for £2. Glamour is giving away sample sizes of the following from Benefit: BADgal Lash Mascara (worth £10), That Gal Brightening Face Primer (£15) or The Porefessional Pore Minimiser (£10). Again, I opted for the mascara (because I always wanted that one!). Inside you'll get a sachet of the new Pantene Pro-V Repair & Protect Shampoo.

I really can't wait to try out these samples!

Have you picked up any of these magazines? If so, which ones? What did you make of this month's beauty freebies? Drop a comment and let me know!

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Finish It! #1

This is the first edition of a monthly (or so) series of posts. It will be in the format of many "Operation Use It Up" posts that you find on beauty blogs, where the focus is on the products that I finish at the end of the month and my opinions of each product. The title "Finish It" was inspired by the Mortal Kombat video game series whereupon a character is approaching death the gamer is told, in no uncertain terms, to "Finish Him!".

The products featured in this months edition are:
  • The Body Shop Neroli Jasmine Eau de Toilette (30ml)
  • DKNY Delicious Night Eau de Parfum (30ml)
  • Tommy Hilfiger Tommy Girl Cologne Spray (30ml)
  • Aussie Mega Shampoo (300ml)
  • Simple Kind to Skin Exfoliating Body Wash (250ml)
  • Original Source Almond And Black Cherry (250ml)
  • The Body Shop Passion Fruit Body Butter (200ml)
  • Good Things Stay Clear Purifying Cleanser (150ml)
  • Good Things Total Wipe Out Cleansing Wipes (25 wipes)

First off are the fragrances. The Body Shop Neroli Jasmine was an impulse buy (that's not to say that most of my beauty buys aren't impulse buys!) to feed my need for a floral perfume. I like floral perfumes but most of mine tend to veer to the gourmand or modern chypre variety, preferably with lots of patchouli! I bought it because I wanted something cheap and cheerful and that's exactly what I got. What I love about it is the size of the bottle - it's not gimmicky and oversized, instead it's rather compact and despite being 30ml it's fairly travel friendly. The scent it lovely but it requires several sprays and the scent didn't last long on my skin but because of it's inexpensiveness I can imagine myself repurchasing this. Delicious Night by DKNY is one I've had for years and was bought at the start of my perfume intrigue. At that time a lot of my perfumes were daytime delights but in the quest for my first evening scent this was my purchase. Oddly it's is not really connected to the original Delicious perfume in the sense that it's a very blackcurrant based floral-oriental scent compared to the original's apple based fruity-fresh scent. For a long while this was my go-to evening party perfume and whilst I'd recommend it, I think I'm over it. Tommy Girl by Tommy Hilfiger was a perfume donated to me by a friend who didn't want it. At the time she gave it to me I was 22, which is just 10 years too old to be receiving this perfume. Had my cousins been in their early teens at the time I would've happily passed it to them. It's a very clean scent and not very overpowering but the citrus top not is just too nauseating for me and I ended up using it a toilet spray.

Aussie Mega Shampoo is just my standard shampoo. In a previous post I made note about the fact they added Aloe Vera to the formula. With this product I didn't notice the difference so much. What's great about this shampoo is that's it's great for everyday cleansing but can effectively remove product build-up. If I straighten my hair I use a heat protect spray followed by a finishing serum so it's important to get that out when I shower again and this one does it just fine. I find the scent is just up my alley, lovely but not overpowering. I bought Simple Kind to Skin Exfoliating Body Wash because I wanted to try an effective fragrance-free shower gel. Whilst I don't detect any scent in it, I found this to be quite an under-performing exfoliator - it's just didn't smooth my skin at any level despite containing loofah bits. The opposite to this shower gel would be Original Source's Almond and Black Cherry. I'm rarely disappointed with Original Source's shower gels (save for one or two products) and this seasonal edition is perfect for cold months, it's has a sort of spicy cherry bakewell tart scent that people either love or hate. Upon my first use of The Body Shop Passion Fruit Body Butter I couldn't help but think that it smells exactly like a fresh can of Rubicon passion fruit drink! It's recommended for normal/dry skin but I have fairly dry skin and found this to be very hydrating yet light and easily absorbed into my skin. The only downside would probably be the scent, you could only get away with wearing a fruit based perfume on top of this body butter! However I only see this one when they have a sale going on so it might be discontinued.

Finally we hit the skincare. Two products, one brand! Good Things Total Wipe Out Cleansing Wipes are biodegradable wipes that contain raspberry and cranberry extract. I bought these because I've been a fan of the brand for well over a year now and wanted something to take of make-up at night. I'm not a fan of these at all. Whilst they were refreshing to use, the scent was just too strange and overpowering and it just wasn't effective at removing my make-up. Good Things Stay Clear Purifying Cleanser on the other hand is my star product. This was the first product I bought from the brand and it remains on my repurchase list! I suffer from cystic acne and whilst I have yet to be cured, this cleanser has really helped things calm down. It contains mango and blueberry extracts and like all the products in the range it's free from parabens, sodium laureth sulphate, mineral oils and animal ingredients.

What did you think about the products mentioned in this month's post? Did you use any of these products - if so, which ones and would you recommend it? Would you buy any of these? Or do you think you think there's a product that I should check out? Tell me your views by leaving a comment!
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