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Beauty Bite: Neal’s Yard Cleanser and Toner Review

Neal’s Yard Remedies Rose Facial Wash Cleanser and Rehydrating Rose Toner…The Review!

    IMG_0128Well, let’s start with the packaging shall we? I’m an aesthetic person and I like things to look nice and pretty, and these do! In lovely glass blue bottles, with simple labelling they look adorable and lmost like bathroom furnishings rather than my beauty products! So there’s a point to NYR…

I’m very much about using products that are kind to the skin and aren’t filled with chemicals, harmful substances and man-made nasties! This is the major reason why I love Neal’s Yard. I have always used their soaps and body lotions, and occasionally sunscreen, but until a couple of weeks ago, I had never tried their beauty products, so I was unsure what to expect. Although their soaps smell great and are very kind to the hands, I didn’t know whether their cleanser and toner would have enough ‘punch’ as it were to ‘get the job done…’ I wondered if it might be just a little too gentle to balance the skin and get rid of all the bad stuff.

IMG_0134I can safely say, I was wrong! These products are great; The cleanser is very effective at removing all the makeup and really getting into the pores and cleaning out the skin – my T-zone is definitely less oily, although that will be a combination of different factors as well, and my skin looks brightened and fresh after a cleanse which is great! Full of natural oils, plant extracts, organic ingredients and the softest acids (we like slightly acidic PH skin!) this product is wonderful, and it smells divine!!
IMG_0138The toner too works wonders…A lot of toners have all number of nasty, and potentially very harmful, chemicals in, supposedly to close up the pores and aid the rebalance of skin’s PH, but I know for a fact that these are unnecessary! The Neal’s Yard Toner is packed with essential oils, aloe vera and is water based, which means no added oil to the skin, and it uses to softest, natural acids to bring the PH down! It has been working wonders for my skin, and doesn’t have that nasty burn that can accompany lots of toners out there!
IMG_0140I often have a problem when I use new beauty products, in that my skin reacts badly and will break out and I will get lots of tiny red spots under the skin, almost like a rash. This has not happened here, in fact my skin has, in the 15 days I have been using the products, cleared up immensely and is much smoother, more refreshed and more even than it has been is some time!

IMG_0141My one gripe here, however, is the use of alcohol in the products. I didn’t check thoroughly before I purchased and I wouldn’t normally buy a product for my face with alcohol in. it’s drying, its damaging and there’s just no need for it! Although it is denatured Alcohol, whihc is supposedly derived organically and is therefore less harmful, I am still very reluctant to put it on my skin. But oh well, if my skin starts to dry out, bye bye Neal’s Yard!

Neal’s Yard create natural, plant based and organically produced products and these are by far the best products to put on the skin. We as humans are organic (mostly!!) and natural, so it makes sense that nature can provide everything our skin and body needs to survive and look good! Putting natural and non-toxic products on your face is the best way to ensure you take the best care of your skin possible, anf these products from neal’s Yard are not only bursting with natural ingredients, and very kind to the skin, but they work wonders and are great for fairly normal to sensitive skin! The one downside? Alcohol.

Score: 7.5/10…dropped a point for the nasty alcohol there!!

Beauty Bite: Autumn Skin Care

Beauty Bite: Autumn Skin Care

When the weather begins to change this Autumn, one of the biggest must’s is skincare! In the wind and the cold, our skin can get very dry and damaged very quickly and it’s more important than ever to take good care of it!

A good, consistent beauty regime is in order now, and we have to leave the casual approach to beauty of the Summer months behind us! Our precious faces need extra TLC this Autumn and here are my picks of the moment.**

**Subject to change…I’m indecisive and very fickle with my favours!!

That old routine…

If you’re anything like me, now’s the time you’re putting on a little more make-up…I barely wear any foundation/powder etc. in the Summer months…better to let the natural tan shine! But now that we’re all getting a little ‘pasty’ the tinted moisturisers, the BB creams, the foundations, the primers, the blushers and bronzers…they’re all re-emerging as Autumn takes hold!

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So a good cleansing, toning, moisturising and exfoliating regime is in order! Cleansing off the make-up and general grime of the day (especially living in the dust-field that in London!) is a must, and I tend to cleanse right before bed and just when I get up as well, to refresh my skin for the day.

Toning shrinks the pores and rebalances the skin after the stress we put on it throughout the day, and enables it to repair itself and absorb the all important moisture to keep your skin smooth and happy!

We’re battered by the cold and wind all day as Winter draws in, and this seriously dries out the skin, so a good moisturising routine is a must, must, must!! I use an intense moisturiser at night and then a very light one in the morning, so that it’s not oily and make-up will sit nicely on top of it. But whatever your skin needs, moisturising should not be left out!

I exfoliate about three times a week in the evening. I use a gentle exfoliator, but with all the dry skin that accompanies this season, its more important than ever to get rid of the dead cells regularly to avoid breakouts and dry, damaged skin!

There are hundreds of different cleansers, toners, moisturisers and exfoliators out there and realistically, it coms down to a. Your specific skin needs and b. Your own personal preference. But my major advice is to avoid the use of heavy chemicals and lots of alcohol! There’s no need to put this on your skin! Lots of toners use alcohol, but it dries out the skin and it’s so so bad for you! We only get on set of skin, let’s be gentle and kind to it!

We as human beings are entirely organic products. Therefore, there’s nothing that nature shouldn’t provide us with. Why use harsh, man-made, damaging chemicals when you can get everything you need naturally? I love brand such as Origins, Burt’s Bees, Neal’s Yard Remedies and Ren especially, as they tend to be very low in the chemicals, exploit ‘natural’ ingredients as much as possible and avoid all the skin damaging, nasty chemicals that so many brands shove in their products!
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I’m using Neal’s Yard Rose Facial Cleanser and Rehydrating Rose Toner daily and I love them so far. Origin’s Modern Friction exfoliator is great too, and I’m in love with Ren’s Frankincense Revitalising Night Cream for moisture before I go to bed; a lovely sales assistant in Space N.K. Gave me about 15 samples of this stuff last time I was in and I’m still going through it, but I will have to invest in a full bottle when I run out! I apply a fine layer of Ren’s T-Zone Balancing Day Fluid in the morning,as I don’t want to put a whole lots of oil on under my make-up and the BB cream I’m currently using is a good moisturiser anyway. Check back soon for a full review of this little beauty routine and all the products!

Then the lips. These get their own category as this time of year, I know I have major major lips issues! They get all dry, and peeling, and then they crack and we can wander round looking like we’re dying of dehydration! Not this Autumn!
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Carmex. I swear by this stuff and have about a hundred pots in various places around my house, in coat pockets, in different bags and in every nook and cranny imaginable! Put it on before bed and let it soak into your lips overnight, when you wake, they’ll be smooth as…well…you know! Also try to use an SPF lip balm during the day: I love Kiehl’s as it’s not too sticky but gives a lovely glossy shine and really packs in the moisture. SPF on lips is important all year, but even now, as it not only protects from the sun, but protects from the harshness of the weather and cold too.
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Oh…the hands! Dry hands are the worst this time of year! If you’re not careful they get all dry and cracked and red and flaky and just…ugh! This is when the hand cream becomes super important!

I love L’Occitane’s Shea Butter Hand Cream, there’s nothing quite like it! It smells divine and leaves hands really soft and moisturised for hours and hours…and there’s none of the pesky residue when you wash your hands! I was given a bottle of Neom Organic’s Violet, Camomile and Cedarwood Hand Cream and it smells divine! It’s less heavy duty than the L’Occitane so it’s more suited to a quick top-up rather than intensive hand care but it feels great and my flatmate says (literally just said to me right as I write this) it smells great, it permeates the room!

I’ve said it before and I say it every time I post of skin care. The most important thing you can do for your skin is to eat healthily and rink lots of water! The vitamins and minerals found in fresh fruit and vegetables are invaluable and eating your 5-a day (or 8 for me!) and drinking your 2 litres (ok…about 5 for me!) of water will do wonders for your skin. Hydrated skin is happy skin!

And, of course, the health benefits of having lots of vitamins and minerals in your system is great this time of year too. Avoid the colds and flu and the highly unattractive pallor that accompanies these maladies by staying healthy and eating right!

We only get one set of skin. Look after it. Be kind to your skin: cleanse it, tone it, moisturise it and exfoliate! By trying to use natural products and ingredients, combined with a natural healthy diet, you’ll be doing your skin the world of good. Look after your body and it will look after you!

Friday Bite: Treat Yourself!

En-Route slurges is what I call it…

I’m working currently in the North East of London, and on my route to and from work are the shopping complexes of Canary Wharf and Westfields Stratfield City. Both of these happen to be attatched to stations where I have to change trains. This creates a little issue…

On my way home, I’m never in a particular rush and the trains that I need to get home all run every 4-5 minutes, so I’m never on a tight schedule train wise. Which allows me the option to stop off at the shops. This is very handy as there are Waitrose and M&S close to the stations in both of these complexes and I can grab any things I need for dinner easily on my way home.

BUT, there are so many other shops that I love…and they’re all close at hand! Option to go shopping is what I said, but It feels more of an obligation/compulsion!!!

That is why I call it en-route shopping! I’m not planning to go shopping, I have no list or object in mind, I just pop in for a quick browse on my way somewhere else…they just happen to be on my route!

This is what happened today. I finished work, got off the train at Stratford and instead of going straight to my connection, I turned right…right into spending a lot of money!

But then again, I had a lousy morning…overslept, cold-shower as I didn’t turn the water on early enough and then the kettle exploded HOT water all over me. Wasn’t a good start to my day, so I needed some cheering up. I needed a treat really, and that is exactly what I gave myself!

My haul!

My haul!

Ah John Lewis department store…how I love thee…

Picked up my favourite fragrance: Chanel no.19. It is my one true love and I never wear anything else! I normally wait until I can buy it duty free, but I’m not planning any vacations any time soon and I’m running rather low. Such a great fragrance, with the elegance of chanel but it’s not as ‘old’ as No.5. It’s younger, lighter but not overpowering or too sharp/fruity/sweet/strong etc.

Had a consultation at Clinique: I was undecided whether I needed a skin-evening primer, or a tinted moisturiser to even my skin tone and create a good base, and as I don’t wear foundation I need something light but that gives some coverage. I came away with their BB cream and I will get back to you on how it works out? …and then of course, I had to buy some eyeshadow as it was of offer!

Rococo Nails do great polishes st reasonable prices and in a great selection of colours. I pretty much just picked at random….

I love Neal’s Yard and I use their hand washes and body lotions, but I came across their cleanser and toner and thought I would give them a go. I need a new cleansing regime, as I like to switch it up so my skin doesn’t get ‘immune’ to it (maybe I’m going loopy, but I think my skin does become resistant to cleansing products) and I only like to use organic and major chemical free as it’s better on my skin. Once again, I’ll get back to you on how I find these products.

The candles were just there…I felt like I needed some TLC, and scented candles around a nice bath always does the trick. And they were reduced…score!

Everyone needs to treat themself from time to time. In my opinion, if you really want something…just get it. Go with your gut reaction and indulge yourself. Go on, whats the worst that could happen?