Paula’s Choice product review

I have been a huge fan of Paula Begoun since pouring over my mum’s copies of her books when I was younger, and now I finally have some of her range of products. They arrived about six weeks ago but I’ve been holding off on reviewing them until I’ve given them a thorough test. Before I start, I just want to mention that Paula’s Choice products aren’t tested on animals, and most of them are vegan, and they are not sold in China. Resist Skin Revealing Body Lotion with 10% AHA The name of this makes me think it’s something to do with taking your clothes off, but rest assured it isn’t! I have always had a problem with bumpy skin on my body, it’s never been nice and smooth like other people have, and I’ve always hated it. I discovered that this is a harmless condition called Keratosis pilaris, and “it occurs when the human body produces excess keratin, a natural protein in the skin. The excess keratin, which is cream colored, surrounds and entraps the hair follicles in the pore. This causes the formation of hard plug. Many KP bumps contain an ingrown hair that has coiled” (Wikipedia). This probably […]

Dermalogica Facial at Esthetica

Last week I decided that I needed a bit of pampering, and also that my skin could do with some help, as I’m still struggling with acne, so I hopped on Flossie.com and scored myself a deal for a Dermalogica Facial. I chose a Dermalogica Active Resurfacer 35 facial from Esthetica Waxing and Skin Specialists, in Birkenhead, Auckland – it cost $60, and the normal price is $80. I did have a $50 Flossie credit, so I only paid $10, but this isn’t sponsored by Flossie or Esthetica in any way – I’m just mentioning Flossie because it’s a great way to get a cheap price on high quality beauty services.  When I went for my facial, it was a wild and windy cold Saturday, so it was nice to go to Esthetica’s beautifully clean, warm salon. Fran, the therapist and owner, greeted me and gave me a glass of water, while I filled in some pre-treatment forms about my skin concerns, any medications I’m on and my current skincare routine. Once we went into the treatment room, she went through the form with me and asked me a lot of questions – she was very thorough, and I felt like I could […]

Empties!

This post has been a while in the works- because I have sooooo many beauty products and like to switch around what I use, it takes me forever to use things. However, I have finally used up enough things to warrant a post. I like reading empties posts because if someone has used an entire product they must have a really clear idea of how it worked, and what they thought of it – much more in depth than a first impressions post. I have 6 products to review today, so let’s get to it! MAC Face and Body N2 – $60NZD I bought this just as I was getting into makeup – it was a nice way to start getting used to applying a full face of foundation. It’s not a very heavy coverage, but when combined with some spot concealer – usually MAC Pro Longwear concealer it was great for me. I usually applied it with a basic foundation brush, it’s a bit too runny to use just with your fingers. I only ever wore it on my face, not my body, but you have the option to, apparently! I don’t have any high quality photos of me […]

Rosehip oil is amazing

At the moment, I am really loving using oils on my face, body and hair. This is the first of a series of posts about oils and how I use them, and we’re beginning with my face! I absolutely love Rosehip oil for my face. My mum used to get me to use it when I was in my teens but I thought it was weird and rarely used it. I wish I had listened! Natural approaches to skincare are now more mainstream, and my mind has been opened to the wonders of rosehip oil. Rosehip oil is made by pressing the seeds of the rose bush – the seeds are also used to make tea which is apparently very good for you, but I haven’t tried it. Rosehip oil is high in essential fatty acids – Omega 6 and Omega 3, which are important for skin health. Omega 6, or lineolic acid, is especially good at improving the skin’s ability to stop water evaporating from the skin. I have noticed a real improvement in the dryness of my skin since using rosehip oil. It can also help to reduce redness and scarring, stretchmarks and wrinkles too. If you have oily […]

Moisturising socks?!?!

Keeping my feet soft is a bit of a year round challenge for me. In summer, like many kiwis, I have the propensity to walk around barefoot or in jandals, so they get tough. Meanwhile, in winter they’re trapped in shoes and boots, and get dry like the rest of my body. I was recently browsing iherb.com and found some moisturising socks listed for only 50c. Described as a ‘luxurious home spa treatment that provides moisture and nutrients to dry rough feet’ they promised to revitalise my feet and be easy to use, containing Aloe Vera and Shea Butter. As someone who is both very curious about beauty products, always on a quest to make my feet silky smooth, and powerless to resist a bargan I couldn’t help but add them to my cart. Once they arrived, I was excited to put them to the test. When I opened the packet, I found they were essentially plastic bags, with a lining of some kind of fabric or maybe it was even paper, that had been soaked with moisture. The instructions say to wash and dry your feet before using, which I dutifully did. You then slip these on to your feet […]

The gym goer’s guide to skincare

On various beauty groups I’ve seen a lot of people asking about how to make sure working out doesn’t ruin their skin. I’m both a skincare addict and also a regular gym-goer, so I’ve decided to give my advice about how I make sure that working out doesn’t have negative impacts on my skin. The first thing is to never work out with make up on. For starters, when my sweat mixes with make up it looks disgusting, and I don’t want to look even less attractive than I already do when working out. I’ve read on blogs things about pores opening and sweat getting in, but the truth is ‘Your pores ain’t no sunflower’, and they don’t open and close. Regardless, having a mix of sweat and make up on your face isn’t ideal for skin health. I always take a clean face towel to the gym so I can wipe the sweat off, and I don’t want to smear make up on it also. “But Lena, I wear make up during the day and then go to the gym”, you say? The solution is make up remover wipes! I generally don’t use these at home unless I’m feeling […]

is Vaseline bad for your skin

Beauty Myths: petroleum jelly and baby oil

Since my post on microbeads was so well received, today I’m going to be doing another science/environmental themed beauty post, and this time the topic is petroleum jelly and mineral oil. Is petroleum jelly bad for your skin? Is baby oil bad for your health? Stay tuned to find out! The product most people associate with petroleum jelly is Vaseline, which was invented in 1870. It was originally promoted as being good for burns and scrapes, but in the years since then it has turned out that it’s not very useful in that regard. What petroleum jelly is  useful for is on dry skin – it functions as an occlusive, that is, it stops water from evaporating from your skin and thereby preserves your skin’s natural moisture. Most people would also be familiar with baby oil, which is simply mineral oil with fragrance added. Mineral oil is known as liquid paraffin, pariffinum liquidum, and liquid petroleum,  and is closely related to petroleum jelly. People often are concerned about the use of both products for the same reasons, so for that reason I’ll be discussing both in this post. Myth #1  If comes from petrol, using it is bad for the environment Mineral oil […]

how-microbead-exfoliators-pollute-the-ocean

How microbead exfoliators pollute the ocean

Yesterday I read the ingredients list of my Aveeno Smart Essentials Daily Detoxifying Scrub and I discovered something sinister. I realised that I had been scrubbing my face with tiny bits of plastic that were then being washed down the drain, to end up in the ocean! Recently there has been a lot in the news about the use of microbeads in scrubs, body washes, and even toothpaste. Plastic microbeads are too small to be filtered by most wastewater treatment, therefore ending up in oceans and lakes, and they are beginning to cause real trouble in the food chain. Despite having heard about the hazard of these microbeads, I naively assumed that since the scrub I use most often from Aveeno, whose tagline is ‘Active Naturals’ that it wouldn’t be an issues. OH HOW WRONG I WAS. The ingredients list is below for Aveeno Smart Essentials Daily Detoxifying Scrub, and I have bolded Polyethylene – which is the most commonly used plastic in the world. Interestingly, and unsurprisingly, they don’t state this clearly on the packaging or website,instead waxing lyrical about how”the natural loofah and coconut pulp-enriched formula gently polishes away pore-clogging debris, revealing a brighter, smoother look, and prepares your skin for your daily moisturizer.” Water, Glycerin, Amino […]

Product Review: Garnier Moisture Match – Goodbye Dry moisturiser

Garnier NZ has recently launched Moisture Match 24 Hour Hydration Tailor Made moisturisers  which are a “new generation of moisturisers with a variety of sensorial textures, customised to match specific skin needs.” According to their promotional material the five different moisturisers all offer 24 hour hydration to suit your skin. The types are as follows Protect and glow – for normal skin Goodbye Dry – for dry/very dry skin. Start afresh – for normal/dry skin Wake me up – for dull skin Shine be gone – for combination/oily skin Last month Garnier NZ had a contest on their Facebook page  to win of their new moisturisers. I didn’t win a full size, but they did send out samples as a consolation prize which was nice. They have five different types, and according to their quiz I should use Goodbye Dry – for dry/very dry skin. This was correct, I do have dry skin. The quiz/contest has finished on their facebook, but it’s available on Garnier UK’s website. I received 5 sachets, which was great – it meant I was able to properly try out the moisturiser for about a week before reviewing it. When I first opened it I was […]

Product review: Soap and Glory Smoothie Star Breakfast Scrub

Today I’m going to review Soap and Glory Smoothie Star Breakfast Scrub. When I was staying with my friend last month in Australia I was examining the products in her shower, as you do, and I opened up this body scrub. The smell was amazing, I almost wanted to eat it – it’s a maple scent, and it smells just like maple syrup. She said it not only smelled great but made her skin smooth, and I was sold. My skin on my legs, upper arms, and butt can be rough, so I was excited by the prospect of making them nice and soft. The tub is 300ml, and it cost me $18.95 Australian dollars, ($20.50 NZD) at Mecca Cosmetica. Unfortunately Mecca in New Zealand doesn’t stock Soap and Glory, but I have emailed them asking them to, so hopefully they’ll realise there’s a demand and stock it. That might be wishful thinking though. I’ve been using it once or twice a week now for a month and I don’t seem to have made much of a dent, so I think it will last me for quite a while. Soap and Glory describe it on their website as follows:  SMOOTHIE […]