New Year Skincare Resolutions For Glowing Skin In 2019

Many of us decide that come the new year, we are going to do everything we can to be a better, healthier and happier person in the 12 months to follow.

The festive season leaves many of us with dull, dry complexions – the result of too much wine and too many mince pies.  That, coupled with a reduction in our usual exercise, late nights and the dehydrating effect of central heating, and our skins can look anything but dewy and fresh. That’s without taking into account the effect of stress on our skin – and who leads a completely stress-free life?

In this post, Dr Ejikeme, Medical Director at the Adonia Medical Clinic shares her 5 top resolutions for having glowing skin this year.

Dr Ejikeme is an NHS Medical Consultant and a highly experienced aesthetic medicine doctor with extensive global training in medicine and surgery.

Here is what she suggests:-

1. HYDRATE

In order to get and maintain a nice healthy complexion, it is essential to re-hydrate constantly, with at least 2 litres of waters per day and by eating water-rich foods.

Your lighter face creams should be swapped in for richer night creams and oils to really keep your skin hydrated. You don’t have to spend a fortune.  I’ve tried loads of creams from Creme de la Mer to L’Oreal and, frankly, couldn’t see a difference in any of them.   What is important is that you apply it regularly and don’t forget to add a sunscreen if your chosen cream doesn’t already contain one.

2. EXFOLIATE

By exfoliating regularly you encourage a more even fade compared to the natural exfoliation that happens over time, it also allows moisturisers and oils to reach deeper into the skin for better effects.

Exfoliate the skin 2 or more times a week for best results for removing dead skins and aiding circulation.

3. EXERCISE

The motivation to exercise is often less in the winter months – however, it is essential. Movement enables lymphatic drainage and constant circulation which then enables the skin to be energised and glowing. Exercising 3-5 times a week will help maintain your overall health, as well as youthful, healthy skin.

4. AVOID TOXINS

The cooler months at the beginning of the year are more likely to encourage skin problems, such as eczema or dermatitis, to flare up it is important to avoid anything that worsens this.

Avoiding allergens and irritants such as chemical-laden detergents will help prevent these problems. Using moisturisers designed for your specific skin type will also improve skin quality.

5. USE LUKEWARM WATER

Using lukewarm water instead of hot water to shower, bathe or wash your face will benefit your skin by preventing any essential oils and moisture being stripped from the skin.

Luckily there are plenty of excellent skincare products to suit every budget these days, as well as many great guides to skincare in your local bookstore.

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Disclosure: “Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.”

Review: e’lifexir Natural Beauty Body Creams

I’ve discovered some great body products lately – most recently the e’lifexir natural beauty range of natural body creams, designed to sort out any body dilemma you can think of.

The e’lifexir natural beauty range certainly has some great green credentials.  The products are Ecocert Natural Cosmetic certified, Vegan and created from natural and organic plant and fruit extracts.

e'lifexir range of natural body creams - 7 creams to be won

Made with more than 99% natural ingredients, all the products in the e’lifexir range of natural body creams have been dermatologically tested, are suitable for all skin types and are hypoallergenic.

There are NO parabens, acrylates, colourants, petrolatum, mineral oils, paraffin, silicones, PEGs, sulphates or artificial fragrances.

natural body creams- e'lifexir Push-up Breast Toning & Firming Cream

The range comprises 7 products each targeting specific parts of the body:

  • Push-Up Buttocks Sculpting Gel to shape, smooth and firm
  • Push-Up Breast Toning & Firming Cream
  • Fitness Body Contouring Gel
  • Actidren Revitalising Leg Gel to relax and refresh
  • Bodylift Anti-cellulite & Lifting Cream
  • Anti-Stretch Marks Repairing & Preventing Cream
  • Flat Tummy Reducing & Firming Cream

I was sent the e’lifexir Flat Tummy Reducing & Firming Cream to try.  It’s designed to reduce localised fat deposits and I can report that after a month’s use, my tummy is certainly smoother and a little flatter.

natural body creams - e'lifexir Flat Tummy Cream

Obviously, no cream is going to remove the ‘mum tum’ altogether, but I found the act of regularly massaging in the cream in a clockwise direction twice a day was an easy ritual to shoehorn into a busy parent’s schedule and also incredibly relaxing.

This particular cream contains caffeine, phospholipids and Centella Asiatica leaf extract.  It’s hypoallergenic and 99.6% of its ingredients are from natural origin.

Caffeine helps tighten the skin for a more sculpted looking waistline, whilst Centella Asiatica leaf extract helps to increase the firmness and elasticity of the skin.

There’s lemon, cherry and orange water, full of vitamin C, protect and soften the skin while olive oil helps reduce the signs of ageing thanks to its restructuring properties.

The cream is quickly absorbed without any residual stickiness and has a pleasant, slightly citrussy fragrance.

The creams are all available at Amazon and Holland & Barrett RRP £15.99 for 150ml and will be coming to other major retailers soon.

natural body creams - e'lifexir Bodylift cream

 

 

Get Beautiful Skin and Improve Your Health With Dry Brushing

If you watched the BBC programme “The Truth About Looking Good” with Cherry Healey recently, you’ll have discovered that there is one thing that definitely works for cellulite – dry brushing of the skin. So I asked my friend Lindsay at Pure Health HQ to explain what it is, what it can do and how to get the best results.  Here’s what she had to say.

If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to get smoother, healthier skin then dry brushing may be the answer!

dry brushing may be the answer for smoother healthier skin - woman sitting with hands crossed over her bare legs

An ancient technique, dry brushing is essentially the removal of dead skin with a dry, bristle brush. Done once a day, for just 5 minutes, dry brushing can help promote a person’s overall health from the outside in.

Not only will your skin feel silky smooth, the rest of your body will benefit too. Dry brushing can help increase circulation, improve organ function and provide some much needed stress relief in our hectic lives.

7 Benefits of Dry Brushing

Benefit #1: Immune Function and Body Detoxification

One of the most well-known reasons to dry brush is to stimulate the body’s lymphatic system. By doing so, lymph nodes (which are responsible for helping to rid the body of toxins) become cleared.

Proper lymph node function is essential for naturally detoxing the body, since they are responsible for filtering out bacteria and other particles that may otherwise make us sick. A clear lymphatic system can dispose of toxins quicker, in turn reducing inflammation and keeping illnesses at bay.

Benefit #2: Increased Circulation

Since dry brushing is done on dry skin instead of wet skin, circulation to your body is increased. Increased circulation means you will have more oxygen flowing through your blood which is key to maintaining a properly working heart and muscles. This stimulation of blood flow may also increase your overall energy.

Benefit #3: Exfoliation

Dry brushing not only provides benefits to the inside of your body, it also helps the appearance of your skin. When you dry brush, you remove dead skin cells (which often hold toxins). Once removed, skin is left looking and feeling smoother, thanks to dead skin cells being gone, and the promotion of skin regeneration being activated.

Benefit #4: Clear Pores

By dry brushing, you eliminate the dirt and grime that has accumulated deep within your skin as well as any pollutant that has built up on the outside of the skin. This means that pore clogging dirt and toxins are removed from your body.

Unclogged pores are beneficial to have because they increase the amount of essential nutrients you can absorb through your skin. Higher nutrient absorption often leads to a healthier, happier life.

Benefit #5: Cellulite Reduction

Since dry brushing helps break apart toxins on top of and beneath the skin, a reduction in the appearance of cellulite may occur. Fat often stores in clumps under the skin, so dry brushing may aid in the softening and redistribution of these cells.

Benefit #6: Stress Relief

Everyone has some stress in their lives. Another great benefit of dry brushing is that it can act as a natural stress reliever. While dry brushing, you are essentially providing your body with a massage. This massaging effect can help calm your mind and relieve tension in your muscles, which often leads to a reduction of stress.

Benefit #7: Helps with Digestion and Kidney Function

By working your lymphatic system, you engage key lymph nodes that work to eliminate toxins and excess water. With the lymph nodes doing more work to eliminate unwanted particles in the body, the digestive system and kidneys don’t become overloaded when doing their jobs to detoxify the body.

Spending about 5 minutes to dry brush your entire body is all you need to take advantage of numerous benefits. In order to maximize the health benefits that dry brushing has to offer however, you must use proper dry brushing techniques.

a dry brush could be a valuable weapon in your skincare arsenal

How To Dry Brush

When dry brushing, the most important thing to remember is to always brush the skin upwards. Since the body’s lymph system flows in this direction, brushing in the same manner helps to keep toxins moving forward on their path to removal.

It is best to start dry brushing at your feet, brushing towards your heart and work up from there, using small gentle, circular, overlapping strokes. When you get to your upper body, start at your hands, and again move in an upward direction.

After you have dry brushed your entire body, hop into the shower to maximize your benefits. If you have a bit more time, follow the dry brushing with a relaxing Epsom salt bath. The mineral-rich salts will continue to remove impurities from your body, improve circulation, and unclog pores- all while increasing the body’s much needed magnesium.

Selecting a Dry Brush

Always remember that when choosing a brush to use for dry brushing, it’s important to find one that is the right rigidness for your skin. Dry brushing should help promote health and eliminate dead skin, not create scratches or damage the skin.

Look for a natural bristle brush, preferably with a handle to help you easily reach all areas of your body. You might want to start with a softer brush and work your way up to a firmer brush.

With so many health benefits, dry brushing is sure to remain around for even more centuries to come. 

Author Bio:

Lindsay is concerned about health, nutrition and the environment. She believes natural products are best and wants to help others learn more about the benefits of using them. When she’s not outside playing with her young daughter, she can be found writing about oils, herbs and organic makeup at her site, Pure Health HQ.

So what do you think?  Will you be giving dry skin brushing a try?

Pin for later:

 

Review: Seascape Island Apothecary Soothe Range

GIFTED: Sometimes you want something special at bath time and Seascape Island Apothecary products certainly fit the bill. Even more so because they are a British brand offering all the chic and stylish appeal of products from their neighbouring France.

In case you are not familiar with the brand, Seascape is based in Jersey and their products are a 100% natural essential oil-based collection of 7 different ranges of bath and body treats for the whole family.

Seascape Les Petits Bubble Bath & Body Lotion, Seascape Soothe Body Wash

Their collections include products for hand care, hair care, babies and children, sensitive skin and men’s products.

They use local products and extracts from herbs distilled on the island in each of their ranges.  Two of these are specifically formulated to be safe for mums-to-be, whilst their children’s range – Les Petits – has been tested and certified by dermatologists as being safe for daily use on sensitive skin.

All Seascape products are made with 100% natural essential oil based formulae with no parabens, silicone, petroleum or SLS.  The products are suitable for vegetarians and there are no artificial colours or fragrances.

Beautifully packaged, ethically and sustainably produced, Seascape’s products have already won several awards and they are against animal testing.

Seascape Les Petits Bubble Bath & Body Lotion

We were sent several products to try.

Les Petits Bubble Bath and Les Petits Body Lotion are beautifully fragrant, yet gentle children’s products which grown-ups will love too.

The bubble bath has lavender, chamomile and Jersey honey whilst the body lotion combines lavender, chamomile and Jersey beeswax.  Both the kids loved the bubble bath and Caitlin felt very grown up with her own body lotion.  “It’s like being in my own spa” she announced.

seascape soothe body wash

The Soothe Body Wash has Neroli, Lavender, Ylang Ylang and Jersey honey. Lavender calms whilst Ylang Ylang is said to balance the mind and the honey locks in moisture to the skin.  The entire Soothe range (which you can win!) contains pregnancy safe essential oils.

The body wash lathers up nicely whilst the fragrance is subtle and not overpowering.

seascape lip balm

The Peppermint Oil Lipbalm contains 100% natural Peppermint Oil with Jersey Beeswax, Jersey Honey and Jojoba Seed Oil.  I found it very soothing with a delicate Peppermint flavour – guaranteed to encourage frequent re-application!

This one appeared on ITV’s This Morning in Bryony Blake’s Spring Make-up Masterclass too.

Mine is already in my make-up bag.

Caitlin enjoying Seascape Les Petits Bubble Bath

Seascape Island Apothecary products are reasonably priced (around the £10 – £16 mark) with beautifully packaged gift sets, should you already have Christmas on your mind.  You can find them online at www.seascapeuk.com or at The Perfume Shop. Delivery is free on orders over £20.

 

Sanctuary Spa Wet Skin Moisture Miracle – Now There’s NO Excuse Not To Moisturize

On my wedding day back in 2011 I remember being completely phased by a question I was asked by my make-up lady as she put the finishing touches to my hair and make-up.

It was this:  “you do moisturise your arms, don’t you”?  

Sanctuary Spa Wet Skin Moisture Miracle

Well, actually no and like many time poor mums I suspect loads of us neglect our bods to a probably shameful degree.

Whilst I love the luxury of a wonderfully scented body cream, I just can’t get enough time in the bathroom for the full on beauty ritual I used to enjoy in my single days.

You can bet as soon as I sink into the soothing warm bath water or dunk my head beneath the steaming shower that a battle will ensue downstairs (this afternoon it was over ownership of a highlighter) or I will hear the plaintive cry of one of my offspring bellowing “muuuuuum, where ARE you?”.  And this even if I tell them I’m off for a bath.

In fact, a recent survey of 2360 women by Sanctuary Spa discovered that 65% of women don ’t moisturise every day and of these almost half are ‘too busy’ or so stretched they ‘forget’ to do it. Anyone with kids will definitely identify with that.

To help solve this problem, they have created a new body product called Sanctuary Spa Wet Skin Moisture Miracle and it’s pretty unique because you apply it whilst your skin is still wet and before you towel yourself dry.  Just turn the shower off (or get out of the bath), apply, massage in to damp skin, towel dry and off you go.

Because you’re moisturising whilst your skin is already damp, you can not only lock in double the moisture but get ready in double quick time.

Sanctuary Spa Wet Skin Moisture Miracle
It’s a light moisturizer which is absorbed in a trice

I have to admit I was a little dubious but it really does work and leaves the skin lovely and soft.  It smells absolutely gorgeous and has a slightly sweeter fragrance than some of the other Sanctuary products which I have sometimes found a little too herbal in aroma.  

There is now no excuse whatsoever to not moisturise the old bod because with a tube of this by the side of the bath, what was previously (if I’m honest) a bit of a chore can be done in a minute or so.

Sanctuary Spa Wet Skin Moisture Miracle usually retails at £8 but from now until 1st August 2017 you can try it at the introductory price of only £5. 

It’s available from most Boots stores & on Boots.comhttp://www.boots.com/sanctuary-spa-wet-skin-moisture-miracle-200ml-10229030


You can find out more on Sanctuary Spa’s social channels at Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Or at Boots on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

So yes, now I DO moisturise my arms.

*collaborative post

Here’s What You Need For Healthier Skin, Hair & Nails

The health of our hair, skin and nails is extremely important as these are a reflection of the natural balance within our bodies – a barometer of our health.

Eating for healthy hair; hair loss; skin health

You can always tell someone who is less than healthy.  Their hair is lank, their skin is dull or spotty and their nails are discoloured, ridged or broken.

For great skin, hair and nails, we need to eat foods that are rich in antioxidants, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, B vitamins, water, healthy fats, and naturally low in sugar. These foods will enhance our blood flow, reduce inflammation, and aid in healthy blood sugar levels.

We all know that sugary foods do little for the overall health of our bodies but a diet too full of the sweet stuff can take its toll on our hair, skin and nails.

Did you know for example that too much sugar can affect your collagen -important for my age group and especially so for mine (50+).  Collagen and elastin are the protein fibres that keep skin firm and elastic.  Besides damaging collagen, a high sugar diet affects the type of collagen you have – and how prone you are to wrinkling.

Whilst we should all be trying to retain our natural good looks with a vitamin and nutrient rich diet, life tends to get in the way and we end up indulging in high fat, high salt takeaways or, my particular vices tea and coffee.

So as well as eating a vitamin rich diet, we should make sure that we have sufficient amounts of the following vitamins and minerals which have a particular benefit for glowing skin, strong nails and glossy hair.

These include Riboflavin (vit.B2), Niacin (vit. B3) and biotin which contribute to the maintenance of normal skin, and the minerals selenium and zinc which contribute to the maintenance of normal hair and nails.

Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)

This water-soluble vitamin helps the body to use the other B-vitamins, all of which assist with helping our body use energy from food and may also help protect cells from oxidative damage.

If you are deficient in this vitamin, you may have symptoms such as cracks at the corners of the mouth, sore throat, hypersensitivity to light and migraine headaches.

A deficiency in riboflavin also effects the formation of collagen, needed to maintain healthy skin.

You can find vitamin B2 in meats such as beef and lamb, milk and yoghurt, mushrooms, spinach, almonds and eggs.

Niacin (vitamin B3)

Niacin, also known as vitamin B3, is a water-soluble vitamin that is a part of the coenzymes that assist with energy metabolism.


If you consume a diet of mostly processed and sugary foods, processed grains, white bread, white flour, wheat products and corn syrup you risk becoming deficient in this vitamin.

 A niacin deficiency will lead to symptoms such as diarrhea, dementia, dermatitis, poor concentration, anxiety and depression.

Good sources of Niacin include turkey, chicken breast, peanuts, mushrooms, liver, tuna, sunflower seeds and avocado.

woman's hands on pink flowers showing off white manicure and diamond rings

Biotin


Biotin (or vitamin H) is one of the B complex vitamins that help the body convert food into energy.

B vitamins, and particularly biotin, help keep your skin, hair, eyes, liver, and nervous system healthy and it’s also a important nutrient during pregnancy as it aids the growth of your baby.

Generally we can get the biotin we need from eating a healthy diet, but there are now claims that getting more biotin can regulate your blood sugar, promote healthy hair, skin and nails, and help pregnant mums have healthier babies.

Biotin deficiencies are rare but symptoms include hair loss or a scaly red rash, anemia and fungal infections.


Good sources of Biotin include seafood, meat, whole wheat bread, eggs, dairy products and soya.

Selenium

Selenium is an essential trace mineral important for cognitive function, a healthy immune system and fertility for both men and women. 

Selenium works in close conjunction with vitamin E as an antioxidant to prevent the formation of free radicals and in turn, may reduce the risk of skin cancer and prevent sunburn.

Selenium is found in a variety of foods, the richest sources being Brazil nuts, seafood and organ meats.

Zinc

Zinc is another essential trace element and it is needed in small amounts every day to maintain our health.  For example, zinc helps with hormone production, growth and repair, improves immunity and aids digestion.

Although it is actually present within all bodily tissue, if you don’t have enough zinc in your diet you may find you are frequently falling ill, feeling constantly tired with poor concentration and wounds that take ages to heal.


Zinc has numerous benefits for your skin, particularly if you are prone to acne or spots which may actually be a sign of a zinc deficiency.

Other signs that you are deficient in this trace element include white spots on your fingernails, dry skin, frequent colds, hair loss, diarrhea and low sex drive.

Good sources of zinc include spinach, beef, kidney beans, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds and oysters.

Granola. Yoghurt and Blueberries

But when you’re pushed for time, it isn’t always easy to make the best food choices and what if you are don’t eat meat, dairy or are wheat intolerant?  

A supplement such as Perfectil Original for Skin, Hair & Nails by Vitabiotics may be the answer as will swopping some of your usual food choices for the foods listed above. For example, swopping your sugary breakfast cereal for a healthy oaty porridge, adding extra green veggies, particularly broccoli and eating more fish such as salmon and mackerel.

If, though, you are finding you have problems with your hair, skins and nails you should see your GP to get a medical check up. For example, problems with the thyroid gland may lead to hair thinning or hair loss and dry skin.

You should also look at your lifestyle in general and make sure you are taking adequate steps to manage your stress and get enough sleep.

Meditation and the practice of Mindfulness are two easy, free ways to take control of unruly thoughts and to stay calm and centered.

*pr collaboration

Review: Sk:n skincare – Skin Products From A Leading Skin Clinic

I was recently sent some new Sk:n skincare products to try from leading skin clinic sk:n.  I am always on the look-out for products which will help my mature skin look a little brighter and which don’t irritate my sensitive patches,

sk:n Anti-Ageing Age-Delaying Cream for younger skin and sk:n age-defying brightening & firming eye cream

Sk:n has 42 clinics nationwide and offers a range of specialised skin treatments including laser hair removal, tattoo removal, anti-ageing injectables, dermal fillers, facial treatments including micro needling, a range of peels for rejuvenation and a range of treatments to combat acne.

You would expect naturally, therefore, that their own range of skincare products would do the job well.

After describing my skin type, I was sent three Sk:n skincare products to try:-

Sk:n Cleanse: Vitamin-Rich Cleanser for oily skin containing glycolic acid, Evening Primrose Oil and Vitamins A, C & E (RRP £17.50).

Sk:n Anti-Ageing: Age-Delaying Cream for younger skin containing clinically proven anti-ageing peptides, Vitamins C, E & A and Shea Butter. (RRP £35)

Sk:n Age-Defying: Brightening & Firming Eye Cream containing clinically proven anti-ageing peptides, Vitamin B3, Caffeine, Glycerin and reflective optical particles (RRP £25).

All ingredients which you would expect to find in a range of skincare products designed by a company who understands skin.

Sk:n Skincare products I tested

Sk:n Cleanse: Vitamin-Rich Cleanser for oily skin

sk:n Cleanse: Vitamin-Rich Cleanser for oily skin
Sk:n Cleanse: Vitamin-Rich Cleanser for oily skin

Unfragranced and effective at removing oily residue after a long day, I found this light gel cleanser pleasant to use and it came in a generous size (200ml).  I did find, though, that it was slightly too strong for my skin as whilst I have an oily T-Zone, the rest of my skin is quite dry.

Interestingly, I can no longer find this product on Sk:n’s website and it seems to have been reformulated for Normal / Combination skin, which I suspect would have suited me far better.

Sk:n Anti-Ageing: Age-Delaying Cream

sk:n Anti-Ageing: Age-defying cream for younger skin
Sk:n Anti-Ageing: Age-Delaying Cream for younger skin

This was a lovely light and easily absorbed cream which my skin seemed to drink in, leaving it smooth and hydrated.

Sk:n Age-Defying: Brightening & Firming Eye Cream 

sk:n age-defying brightening and firming eye cream
Sk:n Age-Defying Brightening & Firming Eye Cream

This was my favourite of the three products because not only was it gentle on the delicate under-eye area, it didn’t sting (always a risk for contact lens wearers) and it did seem to make the area brighter.

Each product contained a leaflet offering a free facial skin analysis plus £25 off any treatment at Sk:n’s clinics.

Whilst I found all the products pleasant and at least as effective as other anti-ageing products I’ve tried, I think that Sk:n’s strength lies in skin analysis and the prescribing of tailored treatments, including skin care.

You really can’t assess someone’s skin via email after all.

Every Sk:n consultation includes a skin assessment, discussion of your particular areas of concern, treatment fact sheets, tailored recommendations and treatment plans. They say they always make sure to advise you on the right treatment, with the best practitioners to meet your needs.

You can find out more at the Sk:n website where you can discover their full range of treatments, the clinic nearest to you and also book online.

Skinn Skincare Review

I have recently tried the Skinn Collagenesis range from Skinn (courtesy of Idealworld.TV who no longer stock it) and I got to try some of their hero products.

Skinn skincare products from Idealworld.tv

Skinn is a top selling international skincare and colour cosmetic brand and the brainchild of industry veteran Dimitri James, a professional makeup artist and licensed esthetician whose work has been seen on the runway and the red carpet, as well as national and international TV shows and magazines.  As well as training makeup artists and estheticians for renowned beauty brands, he is the author of two books, “Becoming Beauty” and “Naughty Makeovers for Nice Girls”.

Skinn says they focus on what goes into the jar and how it will make you look, using the company motto “what counts is inside” and they only use pure, natural ingredients and traditional methods of preparation. It is this, they say, that makes Skinn different from other cosmetic brands.

I was sent four products to try:-

* Skinn Collagenesis 24 Hour Cream 50ml

* Stem Rejen Face Serum 30ml

* Stem Rejen Eye Serum 15ml

* Lip Stem Rejen 15ml

The 24-hour youth preservation cream is fortified with plant-derived peptides, Collagenesis which contains no waxes, no parabens, no petrochemicals and no mineral oil.  It can be used both day and night to help keep skin feel softer as well as help to even the skin tone and firm the skin.

The facial serum is formulated has three key ingredients, Glacier Water, Snow Algae Powder and Alpine Rose. Glacier Water helps to keep the skin moisturised, whereas the Snow Algae helps to increase the longevity of the skin’s smooth, radiant appearance. Alpine Rose helps to enhance the skin’s natural vitality and allows the skin to cope better with climate changes.

The eye serum is formulated with a natural plumping active derived from the resin of the Indian tree Guggul, as well as the key ingredients from the facial serum.

Lastly, the Collagenesis Lip Stem Rejen Serum Elite 15ml is formulated with a naturally derived active obtained from sesame seeds that help to smooth lines around the lip including, marionette and nasolabial folds, for a more rejuvenated and youthful appearance.  You can use it morning and night on your mouth area and laughter lines and as and when needed throughout the day.

I liked the value for money advanced skincare formulations, the elegant packaging and the lovely colours of the potions – a bright pink and yellow.  I found the 24-hour preservation cream curiously springy in texture but with all four products, a little went a long way.

I found the products to be gentle on my skin, easily absorbed and unfragranced which my skin certainly appreciates.  I have found that as I have got older, my skin has become increasingly sensitive and prone to break out.

My favourite of the four was the lip serum designed to minimise those annoying tell-tale lines around your lips – you know the ones – the lines that seem to absorb red lipstick!  I found it had an instant effect and will be popped in my handbag.

If you would like to try the four Skinn products above, you can find all of them at Skinn.com.

Also check out Skinn Insta-Fill for Eyes,  a line filling treatment designed to instantly create smooth skin around the eye area, and Insta-Fill for Lips,  which will stop your lipstick from feathering and make your colour last longer.

Skinn Insta Fill Lips

 

 

Skinn Insta Fill Eyes

 

Ways to Protect Your Skin Against the Spring Chill

Although Spring is here, it doesn’t mean that we can kiss the chilly weather goodbye just yet. Dry air and harsh temperatures can wreak havoc on our delicate skin.

Fortunately, with the right products, you can keep your skin healthy, supple, and protected against the elements.

Read on to learn seven tips for nourishing your skin despite the weather.

1. Cover Up

It is easier to protect skin from the elements than to try and help skin recover once it has been exposed. By wearing hats, scarves, and gloves, you can easily protect some of your most vulnerable areas against environmental assaults.

2. Give Your Shampoo a Break

During winter, the dry air can cause hair to become brittle and prone to static. To keep hair healthier, consider skipping a day or two between washes. This will allow hair to retain extra moisture and fight static.

3. Remember Your Lips 

Although lips are often forgotten in beauty routines, they are crucial to pamper in order to protect them against the harsh conditions of winter. Consider using a lip balm, such as EOS, that focuses on nourishing, natural, hydrating ingredients such as shea butter and Vitamin E.

4. Guard Against the Sun

Even in winter, sunscreen is a non-negotiable component of your skin care routine. Since UV rays are capable of penetrating clouds and reflecting off of snow, sunscreen is an essential requirement for each day of the year.

5. Bump up Your Beauty Routine

During winter, it might be necessary to boost the moisture in your daily beauty routine. Consider using products with hydrating, heavy-duty moisturizers such as natural oils, hyaluronic acid, and shea butter.

6. Show Your Hands Some Love

As with lips, hands are another area that often gets forgotten. In winter, it is likely that you are washing your hands more than usual. This extra washing promotes dryness and can lead to small micro-tears in the skin. Remember to frequently apply lotion and oils to keep hands hydrated and smooth.

7. Hydrate From the Inside Out

In addition to keeping your skin moisturized on the outside, be sure to drink adequate amounts of fluids during the day. Proper hydration will help strengthen your skin and raise moisture levels.  

Overall, the change of seasons does not need to be a time of dry, itchy, raw, uncomfortable skin. By pampering your skin with the right products, you can enjoy healthy skin all year round.

Can You Reverse The Damage Stress Has Done To Your Skin?

It’s easy to under-estimate the toll that stress can take on our skin and kid ourselves that a haphazard skincare routine and poor lifestyle choices won’t eventually catch up with us.

Here’s an explanation of how stress can affect our skin from a medical point of view from Dr Ernst Eiselen, MBChB, FRACGP – and no, we won’t get away with it!

Dr. Eiselen says:

The skin and the brain develop from the same layer of cells in the human embryo; they are intimately linked throughout life. Healthy skin is, therefore, a product of not only a skincare routine but a stress-free state of mind.

Stress is an engineering term which refers to the application of different forces to materials, usually used to test their strength or their breaking point. The concept is no different in humans. The types of forces applied are not those used in engineering, but the effects are much the same. Conscious and subconscious parts of the brain are both involved in the production of stress. As a consequence of brain activity, the endocrine systems become involved at all levels.

Skin is influenced by the brain through its varied and wide-reaching system of connections to the skin. Hormones produced by the different parts of the endocrine system have profound, direct and indirect effects on the skin. From this concise explanation of the structural and functional intimacy of the different organ systems, it is easy to appreciate that skin will not escape the eroding effects of pervasive stress.

The quality, comfort and appearance of healthy skin depend on a fine and happy balance of the influences mentioned above. The blood flow through the skin of a stressed person is not at its optimal level, thus disrupting the oxygen and nutrient supply to the skin. Like any starving or suffocating organ, ageing and decay are sped up over time. Persistent stress starts to automate the nerve impulse pathways as our brains learn the patterns that are most often repeated. Combine this with a lethal mix of constantly-raised stress hormones and cell receptors are reprogrammed into ‘survival mode’.

Cells focused on survival are not attuned to thrive, divide efficiently or produce highly specialised, robust and vital units required for youthful, zesty skin. Skin can become stress-damaged over protracted periods. However, due to genetic and other differences, the complexity of all the involved elements and effects variable to the passage of time make it impossible to quantify the effects of stress on the skin in any individual.

The logical question follows: Is it possible to reverse or correct this situation?

Fortunately, the answer is yes on two different levels. Firstly, there is a need to recognise the elements of stress in one’s life and find a means of managing it in a positive manner. Sometimes, this may be small and simple lifestyle changes to make, but at other times it may require life-altering moves to get rid of the excessive stress. For most people cultivating a simple habit of regular exercise, improved periods of rest and reflection will help to de-stress and balance the hormones responsible for the negative changes. Specific exercises where attention is focused on breathing, stretching and toning go a long way to defuse stress-hormone storms.

On the level of the skin itself, the aim is to alter the skin cell behaviour that focuses on surviving to cells that are able to thrive. We are starting to understand how to create cells which are able to maximise their full potential in function, structure and beauty. Environ’s advanced vitamin skin therapy addresses the backbone processes with which man has evolved over the last two hundred thousand years. Keeping enough of the crucially important molecules like vitamin A, C and E within the cells simply mean that cells are better able to withstand the onslaught of stress hormones and the altered patterns of stimulation brought about by the stress. This does not in any way reduce the need of the other forms of general stress reduction mentioned above, yet it goes a long way to slow down the negative influences.

Speed in everything appears to have become an essential ingredient with companies competing to design electronic instruments which will perform faster with larger amounts of information. At the same time, those who are lucky enough to be in affluent societies are living longer, which simply means that the skin cells will be subjected to this battering of the senses for more and more years. Neither our cells nor psyches are geared to deal with these circumstances. Change at such a pace leaves no room for the evolution of systems which were shaped by completely different survival stresses over hundreds of thousands of years.

The only possible counter-approach to this frenetic race is to understand the importance of relaxation and spontaneous, quiet contemplation for the body and mind. The skin should also be allowed to rest from the stress and physical environmental challenges. Providing real nutrition to skin cells based on sound scientific principles enables repair mechanisms to deal with the cumulative DNA damage, whilst coaxing cells to specialise to their natural potential.

It is therefore important to see the skin as an integral part of a total system which needs de-stressing on a total body level. In this new age, the mind-body balance and macro and micro nutrition will be key to the optimal function of all body parts into a healthy old age. Not least of all will be the need to do this for healthy skin.

Dr Ernst Eiselen, MBChB, FRACGP.

It’s pretty clear that getting to grips with our stress is vital to ensure a glowing complexion, as well as a healthier mind and body.  How well do you cope with stress?

Review: Necta Perfecta Beautifying Mask By Bee Good

When I was much younger, we used to holiday in Dolgellau, mid Wales and the gift shops used to be full of gorgeous smelling creams and lotions made from local honey.  I can still smell that wonderful warm and comforting honeyed scent now.

Fast forward a few (cough) years and I haven’t managed to find anything that captured the same home-grown, organic, good for you, honey-scented luxury cosmetic feel until now.

In fact, I discovered Bee Good’s Necta Perfecta via a review by one of my favourite bloggers, Rachel Montague-Ebbs (LadyM) and Bee Good were kind enough to send me a sample to try for myself.

Necta Perfecta is a 4-in-1 face and body enzyme mask which you can use

– as a weekly scalp treatment to promote overall hair and scalp hydration

– as a facial complexion booster to refine, hydrate and visibly improve skin suppleness whilst actively targeting the signs of ageing

– as a hand rescue remedy to moisturise and restore vitality to hands and cuticles

– as an SOS mask for sore, dry or challenged skin on areas such as elbows, knees and feet to soften and gently remove dead skin cells.

It’s made by awarding winning company Bee Good who launched their range in 2013 inspired by Simon, their expert beekeeper.  They are encouraging everyone to plant a meadow, even if it’s a few bee friendly flowers – and my package contained a bee-mix seedball containing seeeds of Birdsfoot Trefoil, Red Clover, Wild Marjoram and Echium.

There was also a little package of very cute bee chocolates which did indeed taste of honey.

Necta Perfecta contains:-

* natural alpha hydroxyl acids from 5 fruit enzymes
* wheatgerm oil, rich in Vitamin E
* a blend of British honey and beeswax with three natural waxes, jojoba, mimosa and sunflower
* British Propolis and the wonder ingredient Bisabolol which is naturally found in Chamomile

I tried the product as a facial mask and left it on for 20 minutes.  I was expecting it to smell divine (it does) and to soften my skin (certainly does), but I was surprised to find that it left my skin firmer, clearer and had removed the dry skin from the two annoying small patches that have been troubling me around my mouth.

This is one of those products which, though luxurious, is the kind of go-to you can rely on when all else fails. I am rubbish at sticking to a consistent skincare routine (I have two kids, did I mention that?) but it’s good to know that there are products you can turn to that will work.

I also love that Bee Good has a great ethos without being preachy and it’s British – the beeswax, propolis and honey used in all their products comes from British bees.

I’ll certainly be trying Necta Perfecta on my feet and hands and I may even try it on my scalp.  Lots of the ‘performance’ shampoos seem to be incredibly drying.

Plus,  I’ll be doing my bit for the bees. Bee Good actively supports our British bees with charitable donations and by a support programme which includes the education of young beekeepers, supporting apprentice bee farmers and the planting of wildflower meadows across the UK.

Find out more at www.beegood.co.uk

*A PR sample for received for the purpose of this post.

Review: FrezyDerm Kids Suncare SPF 50+ Sun Lotion For Kids

A gorgeous August day took us to explore the picturesque Hope Cove near Kingsbridge in Devon.

The drive, although short, took us down a single track which involved much backing of the car to let tractors pass and the sighting of many a thatched cottage – real ‘chocolate box’ countryside.

The sea was the kind of blue not seen very often around Cardiff, although the Husband says that the colour of the sea is a reflection of the sky, which given that the sky in Wales is so often grey, makes sense.

Hope Cove has a pub, a cafe and a shop selling coffees, chocolate and pasties.  We ensconced ourselves on one of the remaining patches of sand and made sure the kids were covered thoroughly in suncream.

We had with us FrezyDerm‘s Kids Suncare SPF50+ Sun Lotion For Kids which is specially formulated for kids.  It has a new generation of filters which provide very high protection against UVA and UVB rays.  It is also water resistant, colour and parabens free.

Uniquely, this sunscreen shields the DNA and strengthens its repair mechanisms. It protects against photoimmunosupression and provides effective antioxidant protection.

We were in exactly the right place to test it and Ieuan, in particular, tends to redden and burn incredibly easy due to his colouring.

The cream comes in a pump spray which makes it quite easy to control how much you use.  We have experimented with some of the other spray on kids sunscreens on the market and found that you need to be quite a good shot and it takes you a while to get the hang of getting the sunscreen on the child and not the floor (although it may just be that I’m a terrible shot).

The sunscreen has a light, pleasant smell and sinks it rapidly.  There is a very slight stickiness so you are aware you have it on and it is also suitable for the face as well as the body.

Caitlin also has quite sensitive skin and we have found that some other sunscreens bring her out in a facial rash.

We were on the beach at around 11 am and FrezyDerm seemed to do the job.  Ieuan did  not come out in any red patches, despite being in the sea testing his new swimming skills. We stayed a good couple of hours and reapplied just once to Ieuan around the back of his neck.

As an extra bonus, we found that this cream did not leave the kids covered in sand.

The same, sadly cannot be said about the Husband’s car thanks to Caitlin’s new shell collection.