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I wear contact lenses from time to time and find my eyes can get dry. I have tried other brands of eye drops, but i was looking for a product that I could keep for longer than 30 days or a few weeks after opening. Optrex Actimist spray can be used up to 3 months after opening - perfect for occasional use.
According to the manufacturers Optrex Actimist Spray has been specially formulated for an instant relief of tired eye symptoms and a refreshing boost so that your eyes feel more comfortable. The mist contains soothing liposome particles which work in two ways: Repair and replenish the eyes' natural moisture barrier, relieving tired eye symptoms. Also improving hydration of the eyelids and skin around the eyes.
The product retails at £15.99 for 10ml in Boots, this averages 100 doses. The product is contained in a glass bottle, with a sturdy spray nossle. The liquid is sprayed on closed eyes- it can be quite hard to judge where your eye line is at first, but it helps to level up your arm and eye before closing it! The spray is easily and accurately sprayed onto eyelids, i don't find make to much of a mess over my face with this. I use this with and without lenses, and sometimes over the top of mascara and subtle eye makeup. It doesn't cause it to run or smudge.
I find this is a refreshing product to help perk up dry, tired eyes after a long day. My eyes look and feel brighter for several hours after using this. Although i do think that if you suffer from very dry eyes, this may not be substantial enough to overcome this problem, as it is not overly moisturising. I have not experience any discomfort from this spray.
Overall, this is a good product for those who do not like applying drops into their eyes, or those who suffer from moderately dry eyes. I also like the fact that it can be stored for up to 3 months once opened, limiting wastage.
I received a 30ml tube of Liz Earle's Deep Cleansing Mask in a gift set from QVC. The mask is aimed at oily/combination skin, and contains naturally active ingredients include green clay, manuka honey, propolis and rose-scented geranium. This mask is designed to draw out impurities to leave skin balanced and calm. It retails at £14.50 for a 75ml tube and 2 cleansing sponges to remove the product.
The mask is a deep green colour and has quite a thick consistency, it is not as watery as some of the clay masks I have used in the past. The natural ingredients can be identified immediately. It has a pungent herbal scent; which is not unpleasant, but it is definitely natural and not synthetic.
The mask applies easily to the face, it glides over the skin without any trouble. I apply a generous amount to my T-Zone and chin and leave this on for around 10 minutes. In this time the mask dries without any tightness, stinging or irritation. I then wet one of the sponges and wipe off the mask which takes seconds and is easy to remove. After removing the mask, my skin looks matte without being dry or tight, and my skin feels soothed and fairly soft thanks to the botanical ingredients. My blemishes and any redness looks a little reduced, also.
Overall, this is a good quality clay mask which helps absorb oil and soothe skin. My skin also looks better following its use, I produce less oil and my blemishes look reduced. It is quite expensive, but I would consider buying this to use a weekly treat.
I purchased this facial exfoliator in a Liz Earle gift set from QVC. This product, like with all Liz Earle products, contains naturally active ingredients including jojoba beads to gently exfoliate, cocoa butter and eucalyptus to purify the skin. The product helps slough away dead skin cells to reveal brighter skin. It is available direct from Liz Earle with an RRP of £14 for 70ml.
The exfoliator is contained with a bottle with a pump dispenser. One pump is enough for a full face application. Immediately, the Eucalyptus can be detected from the product, is a strong natural fragrance, much more defined compared to Cleanse and Polish. The product is very thick and creamy in consistency, but is easily distributed over the face. The jojoba beads can be felt in the cream, which feels quite gritty to the touch but is not abrasive or rough. I massage the cream over my face which is a pleasurable and uplifting experience, due to the fragrance. My face feels as though is being adequately exfoliated throughout the process- not too much or little.
After about 30 seconds I wash the exfoliator off with water, this is a painless experience. The cream and jojoba beads wash away with a few splashes of water, leaving no residue on my face. The eucalyptus leaves my face feeling refreshed, but not overtly affected by the menthol fragrance. My skin feels soft, smooth and looks brighter, and i have noticed my skin looks clearer when using this. The exfoliator is not drying and I have not experienced any irritations after using this
Overall, this is a good quality facial exfoliator, which is effective without being too abrasive on the skin. The use of eucalyptus oil adds a refreshing and purifying edge to the product, which makes it a pleasure to use. I think £14 is quite expensive for a facial scrub however, so I do not think I will be buying this separately at its RRP.
I received a 15ml tube of this brightening treatment in a gift set from Liz Earle. The mask is designed for dull and lack-lustre skin, it contains naturally active ingredients including aloe vera, witch hazel and white clay. 50ml of this product has an RRP of £14.00.
The mask is white in colour and has a thick creamy consistency. The medicinal fragrance of Camphor Oil can be immediately detected. The mask smells fresh and uplifting with its menthol fragrance. The cream is easy to apply to skin, it simply glides of the fingers on to the face. I tend to apply this to my T-zone and cheeks, where I would to see some brightness; but it can applied anywhere other than the eyes. Within a few seconds of applying, my skin starts to tingle. This is not uncomfortable or too intense, but it just reassures me it is working! This mask is not recommended for sensitive skin.
The mask does not dry whilst it is on the skin, it is wiped off with a Muslin cloth after 2 minutes. It is easy to remove the mask, it wipes off with little effort. Once removed, my skin feels clean and soft and it looks visibly brighter. My skin does not feel tight or dry and have not experienced any irritation following its use. The brightening results from the mask last for around a few hours and then they wear off. I think this is a mask to use before an event, or in the morning to give the skin a boost.
Overall, this is a nice moisturising and brightening face mask, which is great for perking up the skin before an occasion. To maintain results, it needs to be used on a regular basis, but I am pleased with the effects. I think I would consider buying this in the future for a treat to my face.
I received a 30ml sample of this product free in an Estee Lauder gift set recently. Take it Away is a makeup remover which is applied to dry skin to dissolve make up and mascara. It retails at £21 for 200ml.
The product is a white cream with a light texture which is easily applied and rubbed over the face. The fragrance is a little too synthetic and chemical like for my taste, but it not unpleasant. When rubbed over the face the cream becomes colourless and you can visibly see it dissolving and lifting some of the makeup. When ready to remove, water is applied to the face, and a milky residue is washed away.
Once I have washed with water, I find that some makeup and mascara has been lifted, but I can still see streaks of makeup over my face and my skin feels greasy and oily to the touch. This makes me feel quite unclean and that I immediately need to cleanse. This is even when I have used a light covering of foundation.
I then use my regular cleanser to take the remaining makeup and oil off my face. Once thoroughly cleansed, my skin does feel clean and soft. Estee Lauder do recommend cleansing and toning after using this, but to me this product is just an extra effort. I would rather do a double cleanse. I have used this several times and each time my skin has felt oily and unclean. I think this product is more suited to those who wear a full face of makeup, or theatrical makeup, as it does lift off some makeup, making cleansing slightly quicker. For those who only wear a light covering of makeup, I don't think this product is necessary as regular cleanser should remove that any way.
Overall, this is a nice product to use on the odd occasion I am plastered in makeup, but otherwise it is an unnecessary extra step in my routine. I will not buy this in the future.
I received a small bottle of this cheek and lip tint in a magazine around a year ago. Cha Cha Tint is a mango tinted sheer stain, it is available from Benefit stockists for £24.50 for 12.5ml.
The tint comes in a bottle resembling nail varnish, with a small brush applicator. The tint is bright orange in colour, and to be honest, it did shock me at first how bright it was. The product is fairly thick in consistency, so does not run off the applicator; I find 2 swipes of the bush on my face is enough of an application for one cheek. The tint is east to blend on the skin, but you have to be quick, I found that if I leave the tint too long before I blend, I get an orange blotch.
Thankfully once blended, the neon colouring tones down. My skin is pale, and there is an orangey, sunkissed tint to the skin, but it is more subtle than I anticipated. I think more than 2 swipes of the brush would be overdoing it and the result may be very orange.
The results last for hours, I apply this in the morning and there is still a tint on my skin at the end of the day - not as strong, but there is still colour. The colour is easily removed with cleanser, and I have not experienced any adverse reaction to the product.
Even with pale skin, this does achieve a nice warm glow to the skin, but i think the best results would be found on darker skin tones. I would recommend trying this before you but, as the orange colouring will not be for everyone. I like this product and will continue to use it, but i do not think i will buy it as i prefer pinky tones on my skin.
I received this oil cleanser in a beauty box around a year ago. DHC is a popular Japanese company specialising in premium skin care products using olive oil. Their skincare range is free from parabens and unnecessary fragrances and colourings, and is clinically tested for irritants. This product is a water-soluble Deep Cleansing Oil containing vitamin E and olive oil which help fight free radicals. The cleansing oil is available in 3 sizes, with the price ranging from £4.50 - £21.50. It can be purchased direct from DHC's website.
The oil looks like, and has the consistency of olive oil. It is not sticky, it just has a delicate eucalyptus fragrance. The oil is to be applied to dry skin, and I find half a teaspoon is enough oil for a full facial application. The oil is easily distributed over the face and it can visibly be seen to break down make up and grime. When ready to wash off, water is applied to the face and the oil turns into a pale water when rinsed. For simple make-up, I use this once; for heavy make-up I like to do a double cleanse to ensure everything is washed off.
After washing my face feels clean without any oily residue, the cleanser is not drying or stripping on the skin. My face feels soft and moisturised. I have used this on numerous occasions and have not found the oil to clog my pores or cause a break out. I only have a 30ml bottle, but I am amazed at how much oil I have remaining in the bottle. A weeks' worth of use is barely noticeable in the bottle.
Overall, I think this is a great product which dissolves make-up and grime effectively, leaving skin clean and fresh. It is a little pricey, but a little does go a long way. I would recommend this product and I would purchase this in the future.
I was lucky enough to receive a coupon to collect a free 100ml bottle of this product from Marie Claire. This product is from the Lavende, lavender range of L'Occitane products, it is formulated with a vegetal cleansing base, which aims to leave the skin clean and supple. It contains lavender essential oil from Haute-Provence.
The bottle looks expensive, with its silver colouring and screw top cap. The product is to be poured into running bath water, this is fairly easy to do thanks to consistency of the liquid - it is not too runny or viscous. The product is colourless and has strong natural lavender fragrance, it smells quite uplifting and is not musty lavender odour like I've smelt in the past.
I poured around ¼ of the bottle in my bath and waited for it to fill. A delicate fragrance filled the room, which was relaxing, but I waited for the bubbles to form. As this is named a 'foaming bath' I was expecting lot of bubbles, but unfortunately there were fewer bubbles than a regular bubble bath. This may have been due to water pressure, but I was expecting more foam than I got. Nevertheless I had a relaxing bath thanks to the lavender fragrance and my skin felt cleansed.
After bathing, my skin did not feel dry or irritated and I could lightly smell lavender on my skin. I think this bath foam is suitable for both sexes as it not an overtly floral scent. I did sleep well the night I used this, but this could be a coincidence!
Overall this is a lovely delicate bathing product helping you to relax and unwind. It doesn't offer massive amount of foam, but it softens the water and cleanses this skin gently. I like this and I am pleased I received a small bottle, but as it is priced at £19 for 500ml I do not think I will be purchasing it.
After catching the Yankee bug, I went along to a stockist looking for a candle with a wintery fragrance. I found this candle on a winter candle display in my local store and from one sniff I knew I had to have it. I purchased a small jar of Sugared Apple, for around £7.
The image, in my opinion depicts a wintery scene of sugared apples on winter greenery - simple and understated. Lifting the lid on the jar presents me with a warm and caramelised aroma, apple does not spring time mind on first sniff. It is a very sweet fragrance and I seem to think of a musky male aftershave when I smell this candle.
The candle burns well once lit, and I find that in under 30 minutes the fragrance fills the room. Once burning, an undertone of an apple fragrance is slightly more noticeable, but still not obvious. The main fragrance appears to be a musky spiced vanilla. This is not an overpowering fragranced candle, it is quite a subtle scent which fills the room nicely. I really like this fragrance, despite not really smelling like a sugared apple!
This candle is sold around the Christmas period as a winter scent, but I would not necessarily say this candle is exclusively a winter candle. I am happy to use this all year round due to warm musky scent.
This is a lovely understated candle, I recommend giving it a sniff as it could be easily overlooked.
I purchased the REN Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask for Space NK several months ago. I had heard positive things about the 'clean' skincare brand. The mask claims to be a potent bio active peel mask designed to renew the complexion, reduce the appearance of fine lines and dramatically improve skin tone. The product contains glycolic and lactic acid along with natural fruit acids from passion fruit, lemon, grape and pineapple. There is also papain from papaya exfoliate the outer layer of the skin, encouraging cell turnover and smoothing fine lines.
The packaging is quite simple, reinforcing the clean ethos of the brand. The mask is contained in a transparent bottle with a pump dispenser, allowing you to see how much product is contained within. The mask has a gel like consistency, which is clearly derived from fruit acid, it is sweet smelling nectar; which is orange in colour. It is almost seems edible! It is fairly thick and applies to the skin easily, I find three pumps is enough for a full face application. Once on the face, it is colourless; just a wet sheen is visible.
REN recommend leaving this mask on for 10 minutes and then wiping it off with a dampened muslin cloth (the cloth comes with the mask) I tend to leave it on for around 10, sometimes I leave it on for longer if I lose track of time. It does state that some tingling is may occur when using this; I have not experienced this sensation when I have used the mask, and I have normal skin. The mask does not drip off the face, or dry. It remains gelatinous throughout. The product is easy to remove, the cloth is of reasonable quality, not abrasive, this wipes the mask away. Once removed, I swill my face with water and I can immediately notice the difference from using this.
My skin feels soft and smooth, it also looks brighter, thanks to the acids removing the dead skin cells. I have used this mask multiple times over the last few months and I have always noticed a difference in my skin tone and texture. It is recommended that this mask is used once a week, but I tend to use it around once a fortnight if I feel my skin needs a boost. Despite the use of acid, my skin does not feel tight or dry following the use of this mask. I have not noticed any dry patches or irritation.
The results are long lasting, my skin feels soft and smooth for at least a week after using this, hence why I don't need o use it every week. Due to the results, I feel £30 for the 50ml of this mask is justified and will be happy to purchase it again in the future.
I received this shower gel as a gift a few years ago. I am a big fan of L'Occitane and enjoy using their botanical products. The product is available in a 30ml travel size or 250ml full size, which has an RRP of around £20. The product is enriched with orange pulp extract and is designed to brighten up your shower experience.
The gel is a honey colour and is fairly runny, it can be easy to over dispense this product. The gel has a silky consistency, feeling very smooth on the hands and body; it is not overly watery. The fragrance is easily detected, it has a warm citrus scent, suitable for both sexes. I wouldn't necessarily say this is just for summer or even remind me of the sun, as the product suggests. It is quite a spicy scent which to me seems wintery! Nevertheless, it is a pleasant, natural fragrance.
The shower gel lathers up reasonably well, and my body feels cleansed when using this. It is quite a delicate body wash, my body feels clean yet moisturised. My skin does not feel stripped or aggravated by harsh chemicals. I am not crying out for the body moisturiser afterwards!
After drying, my skin looks, smells and feels clean. The fragrance of the shower gel is lightly noticeable for a few hours after washing, but it not overtly prominent and does not interfere with perfume or other scents I wish to use.
Overall, it is pleasant shower gel, but I am not sure I am willing to pay £20 for a body wash, however good it smells..
I picked up Yankee Candle Warm Spice candle from a Yankee stockist whist it was on promotion. I wanted a candle during the winter months that smelt warm and autumnal. It was priced at £14.99 on promotion, which is a little steep, but the jars do offer up to 150 hours burn time, so last well.
The candle is light brown colour and the image displayed on the jar is of cinnamon and spice. The candle contains natural spice extract. As soon as the lid is lifted on the jar, the warm woody fragrance can be detected. I trimmed the wick as recommended, lit the candle and sat back and relaxed. After a few short minutes, the cinnamon, vanilla and spice could be identified as the fragrance wafted across the room. The smell is fairly delicate, not over powering or artificial. To me it smells like someone has been baking with spice.
The fragrance has longevity, I like to burn this for hours at a time, and it is still detectable in the air. Even after extinguishing, the spicy smell is in the air. The one issue I had with this candle is the persistent 'mushrooming' of the wick. I trimmed the wick down before lighting each time, but I found after an hour or two it would start smoking. I then had to blow out the candle, trim, and then relight. This may have been due to me not cutting the wick correctly, but I am not sure? This was the only issue I had.
I used this candle all throughout the winter, now I have reached the bottom. I have enjoyed this fragrance during the cold months; the fragrance suited the time of year perfectly and lasted over these months. It subtly added warm and ambiance to my living room. Now we are progressing to spring, I am looking forward to trying some more scents and candles.
I received a 75ml tube of this Pivoine Délicate hand cream as a gift. I love the original Shea butter hand cream from L'Occitane and was looking forward to trying something different. This product is enriched with Shea Butter, Vitamin E and Peony extract from the Drôme region of France. It retails at £14 for 75ml, which is a little pricey for a hand cream.
The packaging is sweet, the hand cream is contained within a pretty pink box with floral decoration. The tube itself is plainly designed, with an opaque, pink tube with a small label indicating its contents. The tube has a screw lock dispenser, so there is no lid. You simply turn the cap to dispense the cream and twist to reseal.
The cream is white and is quite thick in consistency, thanks to the Shea butter. Despite the richness of the product, it is easily distributed over the hands and is absorbed quickly into the skin. I find a 10 pence sized amount is a plentiful amount for a heavy duty application. The fragrance is a strong floral scent, it is a very feminine smell - it may not be to some peoples taste - I myself, do not mind the fragrance. My hands feel instantly moisturised and soft following an application of this. The effects lasts for hours, without any greasiness. Even after hand washing my hands feel less dry. The fragrance also lingers on the skin for several hours after application.
The Shea butter content in this cream is less than the 30% in the original hand cream. I do not find this cream as rich or as moisturising as the original. Nevertheless, this is a good hand cream; adding moisture, softness with added fragrance. This fragrance will not be to everyone's taste, so I recommend trying it at stockists.
Overall this is a nice moisturising hand cream, but I do not think it is suitable for very dry skin who require intense moisture. I do not think I will be purchasing this as I love the original cream too much!
I picked up a few samples of Crabtree & Evelyn's Tarocco Orange body lotion at the garden centre recently. This is a new range by C&E and this lotion is a blend of energising citrus, green herbal fragrance and moisturising glycerine, this lotion is infused with Tarocco blood orange, bitter orange, eucalyptus and sage extracts. This lotion retails at £16 for 250ml.
The lotion is light in consistency and glides easily over the skin. The lotion refreshes and lightly moisturises the skin. The fragrance of the lotion is instantly noticeable, it is a warm musky scent. The orange and sage is detectable after application - it is not overpowering or artificial and I think it is suitable for female and males to use.
After application my skin does feel and look moisturised, the lotion is rapidly absorbed without any greasy or sticky residue. I can dress almost instantly after using this. The scent does remain on the skin for a few hours, and my skin does feel soft. This is simply a daily moisturiser, it is not an intensive cream or designed for very dry skins. So I would not recommend this if you need extra moisture.
Overall, this is a pleasant smelling lotion which adds light hydration to the skin. I am not sure that I would purchase this as I feel it is a little expensive and is not as moisturising to my skin as I anticipated.
I suffer from wax blockages regularly. I picked this up in boots recently for around £4 - simply because it was cheaper than the leading brand! The product is dual action, in that it softens hardened wax, and also helps disperse wax in the canal, thanks to the Hydrogen Peroxide.
The small 10ml bottle is easy to open and easy to squeeze. The manufacturers recommend 5 drops to be inserted into the canal up to twice a day. I can't really tell how much I am putting into my ear as I cannot see or feel the drops! But I squeeze the bottle a couple of times until me ear canal seems full of fluid. Within 30 seconds a very odd fizzing sensation occurs - due to Hydrogen Peroxide. This seems to last a couple of minutes maximum. Excess solution does run out of the ear and is easily wiped up with a tissue, leaving only a slight oily reside on the skin.
After application, depending on the amount of wax in the ear, you may feel completely blocked up in the earl. My hearing also reduced in the suspect ear. I continued to apply to solution to my ear twice a day for 4 days - as recommended. Unfortunately, after this time my ear was still fully occluded with wax and my hearing was down. I then had to make an appointment with my Practice Nurse to have my ears irrigated. Thankfully due to use of the drops, the wax was very soft and easy to remove.
These drops are good to use to prevent wax build up and to soften hardened wax. The ear naturally clears itself, sometimes it needs a bit of lubrication to do this. The drops are not effective in ears which are already heavily blocked up with wax - like mine were. In these circumstances the only option to have them cleared professionally.
It goes without saying to read the label and follow instructions - do not use these drops if you have a history of ear conditions or infections.
Overall, a good preventative measure - but so is olive oil.......