Monday, 23 March 2015

Clarins Hydra Quench Cream Mask

Clarins is a brand that, if I'm honest, I have always steered clear of. As one of the biggest brands in the industry, I realise that this is sacrilege, but I found working with natural skincare, I often found that customers searched for a natural alternative when they'd had a reaction to the more scientific brands out there. And almost always, it was Clarins they'd reacted too. Therefore, I have always associated Clarins with itchy and burny skin reactions, that match the red bottles and uniforms of the Clarins team, which is a little extravagent I know!

I was given this little hydra quench mask in my leaving box, and thought I'd bring it along with me on my travels as the words 'hydra' and 'quench', marry well when combined with sun. I have to say that this mask has been my saving grace when I've got burnt on my face. The usual forehead and nose burn where the sun hits most, has been banished overnight after just 10 minutes of use. It has worked on severe sun burn and helped maintain the slow tan emerging on my face, so thankfully only minimal peeling, and even that's been in my hairline where the mask won't reach.

The texture reminds me of the Nuxe hydrating mask I have used before and absolutely loved, so I would say they are on par if you fancy a natural alternative.

It has definitly changed my mind when it comes to Clarins as a brand though, so I may not be so skeptical to try more in the future.

PS Just a little note to say that I apologise for the quality of pictures and potentially weird layout of my blog. Im doing it all on my phone so bear with me whilst I'm away! Thank you! Xxx 

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Liz Earle After Sun

After our first day on Ipenema beach, with lots of walking around exploring, the inevitable burn hit us, and it his us hard. Although Rio was slightly overcast, we didn't notice the severe heat that was pounding down on us, and so we looked a little lobster like for a few days.

I brought this Liz Earle after sun with me which was given to me as a leaving gift. Without sounding ungrateful, the gel doesn't seem to soothe the bad sun burn unlike cheaper after suns I've used before. Although the organic aloe Vera, cucumber, and vitamin E are great at soothing skin, the natural brands policy of having no ingredients to block pores almost goes against it.

I found the gel felt great for skin that had been in the sun that just needed more hydration, but for the bad sun burns we got, the product only sat on the skin for a few minutes as it seemed to evaporate off  after a while. It almost NEEDS that sealant ingredient to keep the moisture locked in. As a result, we were left with burns that didn't really healed for 4 days, and actually went and bought a cheap Vaseline moisturiser infused with chamomile, which seems to be calming the burns after just one day of usage.

At its higher end rice point, I wouldn't buy the Liz Earle after sun. However the toning spritzer which was also a gift, is very handy to spray on when feeling hot. The soothing ingredients in this also provided great relief for when the burn bits were hot and itchy.

As this is a bit more of a multi purpose product, as its initial job is a toner, I would buy this again, as its great to have by my bed side during the hot Brazilian nights, and also in my hand luggage when doing treks or long days out to just spritz on for refreshment.

Like I said, I don't want to seem ungrateful for my gifts as they were very thoughtful and generous, but I think it proves that sometimes, price doesn't always reflect on the effectiveness of a product 

Thursday, 12 March 2015

number4hair: Lumiere d'hiver

I recieved this travel size leave in conditioner in a Birchbox of mine a while ago, so I have done a review on this before, however this number4hair leave in conditioner deserves a post of its own. If I'm honest, the reason I brought this with me to travel with was because of fate. Whilst giving my room a sort before I left, I came across this again and read the back of it to remind me of what it was. As soon as I saw that it repairs hair that has had "too many weekends in Rio" my jaw dropped and I threw it straight into my toiletry bag.

Having not used any conditioner whilst I've been here, and only my Aveda sun care shampoo, this leave in conditioner has given my hair the moisture it needs, and making it easy to brush after a day of sun abuse on my hair. It is an entirely natural brand, that draws on the benefits of water, and it gives UV protection to the hair as well for future sun abuse.

It may jog your memory of my post before if I tell you it smells like Sailor Jerry.

From looking at the website, this brand seems very modern and professional. This product retails at $32.00

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Botanical Gardens: Rio de Janerio

As you probably know by now, I am in Rio De Janerio at the moment, on the first leg of my travels. Yesterday we went to Rio's large botanical gardens in the centre of the city. I love Rio because the city was built AROUND the forest, and has hardly been developed on. Carioca people are very respectful and thankful for the rainforest ,as it means minimal pollution. As a great lover of natural skincare, I took great delight at stumbling across the Botanical Gardens 'Medicinal Plant Collection' where they store and harvest plants. 

Having worked with natural skincare for nearly two and a half years, I instantly recognised a lot of the plants they were harvesting, and found it really interesting!

I have never seen a natural Aloe Vera plant grow this big, and as the soothing sap that comes from the plant is in a majority of our skincare, it was really good to see one thriving.

Patchouli again, is in a lot of skincare products I use, and I have never actually seen it in its natural form, like a lot of the other plants I saw. The names under each plant were all written in Portugese, but I could vaguely translate some into the ingredients I used to see every day at work.

This little hut had more information about the way they use the plants and transform the ingredients into medicines and skin care. It was really interesting to see, I wish I could have read the Portugese to get a better insight.

I didn't intentionally go in a flowery dress

Whilst we were there, the staff were actually harvesting some of the crops to be used! 

There was also a Rose garden which is another plant that is great for skincare, however it was looking a little worse for wear so I didn't take any pictures. The park was stunning though, and was a really interesting insight into the Brazilian wild life and natural world!

If you want to read more about my travels, my boyfriend and I are writing a travel blog. 
you will find it at

Saturday, 7 March 2015


Hello my lovely followers! As you may know from my New Years post, this year is going to be a year of travel for me. At midday today, I finally landed in Rio de Janerio after a long 14 hour journey. Having only been here a few short hours, we drove to our hostel and saw the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue en route which was so amazing, as that has been on my bucket list to see for a long time now. I'll be going to see in on closer inspection on Monday.

As for the hostel, the 'Mango Tree' -which is situated right on Ipaneama beach-, is bright colourful and welcoming. My boyfriend and I spend a few hours swinging in the welcoming hammocks and swing chairs placed everywhere.

our cosy room

Looking so pale compared to my orange room

I will keep updating on my travel journey, but of course I will keep on reviewing products as per usual. I have a fair few to tell you about which have been real saviours on my trip so far, so I will keep you updated with those!

Monday, 2 March 2015

Fruity Nails

I have been a huge Marina and the Diamonds fan for a few years now, and I have been eagerly anticipating the mega babes new album 'FROOT'. The album cover and pac man style fruit got me thinking of some fruity inspired nails!

 As I did those banana nails a few days ago, I decided to embellish on those a bit more and do some cartoony fruit patterns to match the fun album feel.

I used pastel colours for the base and then brighter colours for the fruits to make them stand out.
Some didn't turn out as well as I wanted, especially the oranges and kiwis, so I thought I'd do a whole mani on just kiwis as I'm enjoying my brighter colours at the moment! I used my Jessica polish called 'radioactice' and then used nail art pens for the detail.

 They are really easy to achieve and look really effective!

Saturday, 28 February 2015

Emoji Nails

Hi everyone, today's nail are inspired by the marvelous emojis that grace our lives on a daily basis! I love to animate my texts with emojis so I have done a manicure inspired by my most used little faces!

I used a yellow Rimmel colour for the base, and then did the darker shaded bit with my Barry M 'Mustard' colour. I then went over to define bits with 'Espresso' by Mavala and used nail art pens for any teeth! The heart eyed emoji was used with the Alexa Chung heart polish.

That's it really! Just a little post today!