Friday, 13 May 2022

Glow Recipe Strawberry Smooth BHA + AHA Salicylic Serum

 

The fabulously fruity Glow Recipe family is growing and I couldn’t be more excited!

Give a warm welcome to the brand new Strawberry Smooth BHA + AHA Salicylic Serum.

 


Powered by our 10% Clarity Acid Complex™ (a special blend of 2% salicylic acid & mandelic acid (AHA+BHA), strawberry, azelaic acid and succinic acid) this wonderfully juicy smoothing serum has been created to help clear breakouts, refine pores and clarify and calm your complexion.

Presented in a manner in which only Glow Recipe could conjure up, the bottle resembles one of the serum’s key ingredients which as you may have guessed, is strawberry.

 


The soft, red glass bottle features tiny details of indented seeds to resemble those of the delicious fruit and a pump dispenser for hygienic and measured product release.

If (like me) you can suffer for congested skin but have the added complication of having delicate or sensitive skin which can react to harsh products, this serum could be for you.

Kiss goodbye to drying, harsh acid treatments and welcome some fruity nectar into your life.

 


Within the 10% Clarity Acid Complex™  formula you’ll find 2% Encapsulated Salicylic Acid (BHA).

Salicylic Acid gently dissolves blemish-causing buildup and balances oil production and because it is close to your skins own natural pH level, it does so with minimal irritation.

Mandelic Acid (AHA) helps to smooth rough texture, Azelaic Acid Liposome boosts the performance of the salicylic acid to gently calm sensitized, blemish-prone skin and Succinic Acid works to hydrate, soothe and decongest your skin, leaving your complexion looking brighter and healthier.

 


Meanwhile, a naturally occurring enzyme found in strawberry water and leaf extract get to work rehydrating and resurfacing your skin while reducing the production of excess oil which can cause build up and in turn, blemishes.

Also crammed into this silky serum you’ll find the holy grail of skincare ingredients, hyaluronic acid to plump, deeply nourish and restore moisture to your skin all day long.

Offering an additional comfort is Allantoin, which moisturises, protects and smooths the skin while Bisabolol (a soothing form of vitamin B) brings its skin brightening benefits to the table.

 


Silky, feather-light and refreshing in texture, the serum possesses the softest, most subtle aroma of fresh strawberries which creates a fresh, sweet, pleasant multi-sensorial experience upon application.

It is light enough for use on my combination/oily skin without making it feel heavy or weighed down, clogged or flooded.




Quickly absorbed, it leaves your skin feeling instantly quenched and soft without a hint of oiliness.

Designed to be used on freshly cleansed skin prior to your moisturiser, it not only gets to work quickly but works as an excellent primer for your moisturiser, helping to boost long-lasting hydration for younger, healthier, more radiant looking skin from morning to night.

 


Results of clinical trials boast some pretty impressive stats, with 100% of participants agreeing that the serum has reduced their blackheads, 96% agreeing that it helped minimizes the appearance of their pores, 96% reporting that it has reduced their breakouts/blemishes and 90% agreeing that their skin texture looks and feels both softer and smoother.

Glow Recipe’s Strawberry Smooth BHA + AHA Salicylic Serum is available now from Cult Beauty and costs £36.

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Thursday, 12 May 2022

My Review of The Tria Hair Removal Laser 4X

 I have been self-conscious about my body hair ever since I can remember.

As ridiculous as that may sound to some, particularly as we are currently being swept along in wave of body positivity movements encouraging people to accept and embrace their bodies, which by the way I think is brilliant and well overdue, I still cannot help but have this insecurity.

I naturally have very dark hair and for 90% of the year I sport porcelain white skin, so as you can imagine, this is a combination which means that my body hair is usually very obvious.

Just to add insult to injury, I also suffer with eczema prone, sensitive skin which means that hair removal methods such as shaving, epilating and waxing frequently results in razor grazes, bumps, ingrowing hairs and localised skin reactions to waxing which causes redness, burning and itching.



All in all, not great if you are someone who has chosen to remove their body hair.

I’ve spent years temped by the idea of booking myself in for Salon IPL hair removal laser treatments but have always been put off by the hefty price tag and while not a prude, felt slightly awkward about asking a complete stranger to zap my lady bits.

After spending last summer dealing with sore, razor grazed skin or tender, bruised feeling skin due to waxing, I decided enough was enough and I put my faith in Tria Beauty.

Why Tria?

Well dear reader, I did a LOT of research because there are now a plethora of at home laser hair removal devices on the market, the majority of which feature a technology that you may be familiar with called IPL.

Not so the Tria device.

The Tria 4X Hair Removal Laser features diode laser technology, not IPL.

What is the difference? I hear you ask, well, allow me to explain.




 IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) hair removal devices produce a range of different wavelengths and colours that are dispersed at various levels of depths (making it impossible to focus the light energy as a concentrated beam) meaning that the diffused energy does not only target the melanin in your hair follicle, but also the surrounding skin.

Only a small percentage of the IPL energy is effectively absorbed by the hair follicle, meaning that more and regular treatments are required as thicker, deeper hair follicles may not be reached and disabled effectively.

Also, (and I didn’t know this) but IPL does not permanently remove hair. You will always need regular treatments on an on-going basis with regular top ups, plus if your treatments gets interrupted, the hair follicles will re-activate and your hair will grow back.

I’m not here to discredit IPL devices and they certainly will reduce and slow down hair regrowth, but they will never permanently remove your hair.

 


I’m here for long lasting, nay, PERMANENT hair removal, so I knew that IPL wasn’t going to be for me.

So, step forward Tria.

The Tria 4X Hair Removal Laser is the first clinically-proven laser available for home use.

It boasts the same diode laser technology preferred by dermatologists and unlike IPL, it offers targeted results by disabling your hair follicles to stop hair growth for permanent results.

The laser’s single spectrum, pure light energy in one single red colour and wavelength is targeted directly to the hair follicle, achieving accurate and permanent results.




The laser’s specific wavelength and beam precisely targets the dark pigment (melanin) in your hair follicle in order to heat the follicle, disabling its ability to regrow hair, without heating or damaging the surrounding skin.

Unlike IPL which will require on-going treatments, users of the Tria Hair Removal Laser 4X may find that they can stop regular treatments altogether after three to six months, though an occasional top-up may be required.

I was sold.

Before I go any further, it’s important to note that the Tria laser is not suitable for all skin tones.

Those with darker, deeper skin tones have a higher risk of skin injury with the Tria Laser 4X because of higher levels of melanin in the skin, while those with lighter hair colours such as white, blonde, red or grey will not benefit from this device as the follicles will not absorb enough of the lasers energy to disable the follicle as the laser is designed to target dark pigment in the hair.

 



Once I’d established that my skin tone and hair colour made me the perfect candidate for this treatment, I couldn’t wait to get stuck in.

Available in two aesthetically pleasing shades of hot pink or soft green, the laser itself comes in a box with a charger and detailed set of instructions.

There’s no long winded, complicated set up, simply plug the charger into the base at the back of the laser and plug in to power up.

There is an easy to decipher display screen on the top of the device which displays the battery indicator, treatment level, pulse counter and a special ‘lock’ safety feature.

There is a large, pink power button at the base of the screen, and that’s it.

To begin, ensure that you have charged your laser for at least 2 hours before you intend to use it, or anytime the battery indicator is ‘empty’ and blinking.

It’s also worth noting that 6 weeks before you plan to start your treatment you need to stop waxing, plucking hairs or having skin peels.

Immediately prior to your treatment, cleanse the intended treatment areas, moving all cosmetics, lotions and creams.

Shave the treatment area to remove surface hair as this improves comfort and allows the light to better reach the hair deep within the follicle.




In order to use the laser you must ‘unlock’ it.

This safety feature is in place to ensure that only suitable skin tones use the device.

To unlock, simply press the power on button. The screen will reveal the lock and skin sensor icons. Hold the laser against the skin you wish to treat, at which point the laser will automatically check your skin from its sensor on the base of the device.

Once it has processed your tone and providing it is suitable for you, it will emit a series of beeps and unlock.

Next, you can set your own treatment level.

You can select from level 1-5 by pressing the power button to increase or decrease the energy level, though unsurprisingly for best results Tria recommend using the highest setting that you can tolerate.




Once ready and set to go, its actually exceptionally easy to use.

Hold the treatment window on your skin until you hear two beeps, then lift the laser and place it back on the skin so that it overlaps the previous spot.

Every time you reposition the treatment window, move it about half the distance of the window (about ¼ inch). This overlapping pattern ensures that you’ve covered all of the hair follicles in the treatment area and the pulse counter (on the display) will equate to roughly 25 laser pulses per square inch of skin.

The pulse counter guide included within the instruction manual provides really helpful information about how many pulses you should expect to see for optimum results on various parts of your body.

For example, if you were treating your underarms you should expect to see a tally of 100 pulses per side which would roughly take 4-5 minutes each side.

For your bikini, expect 200 pulses per side, taking about 8-10 minutes each and if you’re treating your legs it’ll be roughly 600 pulses for your lower leg, 600 for your upper and can take between 25-30 minutes per side.




For me, the skin on my legs is unsurprisingly more hardy than the delicate skin under my arms and on my bikini area, so I decided I’d be happy to stick with shaving them for the time being, but I was desperate to zap away my under arm hair and bikini hair.

As I have sensitive skin, I opted to begin my treatment at level 3 to test my pain tolerance, though to be honest I think ‘pain’ is too strong a word for the sensation experienced when using the device.

A better description would be that it feels more like a quick shot of a hotness, or like the feeling of an elastic band repeatedly snapping against your skin type of experience rather than pain.

It can be uncomfortable as opposed to painful, but if you’ve ever had a bikini/underarm wax then it’s the type of discomfort that you’ll have no problem in tolerating, trust me.

I sat on the edge of bed, put some music on and zapped away until I had treated the entire area.

Surprisingly, my skin felt perfectly calm and not at all tender after use, well, bar the usual razor burns from shaving the area first!

After your initial treatment there will be no visible change to your hair- it does not cause it to immediately fall out so don’t get your hopes up, after all, Rome wasn’t built in a day!

 



 However, as your hair grows in cycles, with multiple, regular, targeted treatment (which is suggested as every two weeks for up to 3 months) you will eventually notice things changing.

Within about 4 weeks I noticed that the hair was beginning to grow patchy.

It was at this point I decided that as I could tolerate level 3, it was time to ramp it up to level 5.

Naturally, the uncomfortable sensation increased, however by now I could begin to see real improvement and was spurred on!

Within 8 weeks I noticed that unlike shaving where you can still see the hair beneath the surface of the skin, in certain patches I couldn’t see any hair at all.

Within 3 months I was all but hair free.




To say that I’m over the moon is the understatement of the century.

Not only am I hair free, but I no longer suffer with the pain of grazed skin, nicks, ingrowing hairs or angry looking razor lumps and bumps which is a big deal for someone like me with sensitive, reactive skin.

I no longer have to time my hair removal with holidays, occasions, nights out etc- I’m already ready and raring to go!

Now as you may expect, the Tria Hair Removal Laser X4 is more expensive that your shaving or waxing paraphernalia, however unlike those this will be an one-off purchase and when you consider how much money you have spent in the past on at-home hair removal or salon waxing etc, you’ll find that its very likely more financially economical than you thought.



 

Priced at £375 (though it is currently on offer for the bargainous price of £299) It is actually one of the more reasonably priced laser products on the market, more reasonable even than some of the non-permanent IPL devices, which is awesome.

That £375 works out as just over £31 a month for a year (or just over £24 per month if bought at £299), which let’s be honest is probably less than you’d spend on a monthly in-salon waxing treatment.

I have literally nothing but positive things to say about this device.

Deciding if or how to remove your body hair is a deeply personal choice, but thanks to the Tria Hair Removal Laser 4X it has helped me achieve silky, smooth, hair-free skin in areas which had bothered me for such a long time and for that I am extremely grateful.

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Wednesday, 4 May 2022

Fenty Beauty Cheek Out Freestyle Cream Blush

 Put your best cheek forward with Fenty Beauty’s Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Blush.

This little pot of pure joy features the most beautiful formula, allowing you to create a natural looking fresh-faced flush in seconds.

 



Available in 10 stunning shades to suit all skin tones, the luxurious, lightweight texture literally melts onto your skin, creating a second skin look and feel.

I tested out the blush in shade in Bikini Martini, a soft yet vibrant bubblegum pink.




Housed within a cute, compact octagonal compact complete with mini mirror for on-the-go touch ups, the blush looks a little frighteningly bright in the pan.

Fear not though because it offers an exquisitely soft, sheer finish far lighter in hue than the compact would have you believe.



Love the boldness and brightness then that’s fine too because the silky formula is totally buildable too.

The weightless, sweat and water resistant formula glides over your skin without any hint of stickiness or greasiness, blending like a dream without disturbing or interfering with your foundation.



The result is a natural looking flush of colour that will leave you forgetting that you’re even wearing makeup.

Fenty Beauty's Cheek Out Freestyle Cream Blush are available now in 10 shades from Boots and cost £21 each.

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Thursday, 28 April 2022

Too Faced Lip Injection Extreme Plumped To The Max Set

 Give the gift of a beautiful full pout with Too Faced.

Say hello to the gorgeous Lip Injection Extreme Plumped to The Max Gift Set.

This limited-edition gift features three of the brands iconic travel-sized lip glosses to help deliver both instant and long-term plumping while deeply hydrating and nourishing your lips.

 


The set comprise of the Lip Injection Extreme Original, Bubblegum Yum and Strawberry Kiss.

Perfect for complimenting all skin tones, Bubblegum Yum offers a beautiful, pale pink, Strawberry Kiss packs a punch thanks to its vibrant hot pink hue and then of course there is the OG in all its transparent yet iridescent glory.

 


Retaining the same fabulously sweet and fruity fragrance, these pretty shades offer a subtle hint of colour while creating a beautiful, full pout.

Lip Injection Extreme intensifies the plumping benefits of the original gloss thanks to its medically proved blood vessel dilating technology and light-reflecting shine to moisturise and nourish while boosting your pout power.

 


Formulated with atelocollagen, marine filling spheres, antioxidant Vitamin E and nourishing avocado and jojoba oils this lightweight gloss leaves lips feeling pampered and full from first application.

Silky and light it feels more like a luxurious serum than a traditional gloss which can be heavy, sticky and gloopy.

 


Glide the soft wand across your lips and experience the light tingling sensation as it gets to work.

Unlike some plumpers which can create an intense tingling which can actually be quite uncomfortable, the Lip Injection Extreme offers a more gentle experience.

 


Within a matter of minutes, lips look and feel fuller while the moisturising and comforting feel of the gloss leaves your lips feeling smooth, soft and hydrated.

Despite its featherlight texture the gloss hugs your lips tight, meaning you won’t need re-apply every 5 minutes.

 


While Bubblegum Yum might just be my new favourite shade thanks to its soft, pretty cotton candy pink, each plumper is undeniably gorgeous in its own right.

The fab Too Faced Lip Injection Extreme Plumped To The Max Set is available now exclusively from Beauty Bay and costs £24.

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Tuesday, 26 April 2022

KVD Beauty Everlasting Blush

 I think I may have just found my new all-time favourite blush.

Can we just take a moment to appreciate how breathtakingly stunning this KVD Beauty Everlasting Blush is.




Blush is blush, but ‘cmon, just look at this absolute beauty!

Boasting an award winning formula, this one-of-a-kind blush compact has been inspired by the high pigment, soft matte finish and long lasting durability of their Everlasting Liquid Lipstick.

 


It directly reflects the lipstick’s rose designed cap also, with the exquisite compact featuring beautiful black petals of a rose in bloom, with the blush sitting elegantly at the centre of the flower.

Available in six stunning, flattering shades, I got my mitts on Rosebud, a romantic dusty mauve-pink.

 


The blush itself is luxurious and silky in texture thanks to its micromilled formula, allowing it to blend seamlessly into your skin and features plant derived skin conditioners to leave your complexion feeling wonderfully soft to touch and never cakey.

Lightweight and velvety like the touch of a rose petal, this blush delivers some seriously long lasting wear and is transfer resistant, so once on your face, that’s where it’ll stay all day long.




Offering a natural, soft-matte finish, it breathes life back onto your complexion without hiding your natural beauty.

Thanks to its highly pigmented nature, a little goes a long way with this blush and its buildability allows you to opt for a subtle sweep of colour or a more intense pop of colour depending on your mood or desired look.

 



In a consumer study on 32 volunteers over 24 hours, 100% of users agreed it applied smoothly & seamlessly,  100% of users agreed it had a soft, velvety texture and 100% of users felt it was easy to apply.

Strong results indeed which I completely concur with!

 



You can experience the KVD Beauty Everlasting Blush for yourselves now from Boots where each blush costs £22.

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