Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Moi-Même - Spring Box 2018

I'm a little late posting about the Spring 2018 Moi-Meme box I received in April.  I opened it, I loved it and then it was time to pack and go to Spain for 2 weeks, but here I am finally to tell you all about how much I loved the Spring box!


This is the 2nd box I have gotten from Moi-Meme.  It's a quarterly subscription lifestyle box and it costs £49.99 each quarter.  Each box has a theme and this month was all about Nature.


The first thing was something so simple, wildflower seeds.  This is something I've always wanted to get for the garden but it's something that as soon as I think about it, it pops out of my head to be forgotten forever.  I can't wait to plant these so I can see what grows!  It really is the little things.


Next up was I am Nourished Crystal Mist by Holistica.  This is worth £24.50 and promises to calm and indulge dry,  dehydrated complexions.  Carefully chosen for their healing properties, crystals are cleansed and paired with complimentary botanical waters to charge the vibrational frequency of the mist.  I've never tried anything like this before and I'm delighted to get one for dry skin as I will take all the moisture I can get for my face.  I'll be trying this asap and look forward to letting you know what its like!

There were two skincare products in this box and the next one is Rose & Neroli Day Facial Oil from Siskyn worth £42.  Siskyn was founded by 2 sisters in 2016 which I love and this facial oil promises to deeply nourish your skin, giving it a velvety soft, radiant glow.  It says this should suit all skin types so I'm really looking forward to giving it a go.  It's to be used after cleansing, so I'm hoping between this and the crystal mist my skin will be radiant in no time!


If you know Karen and I, you know we love our scarves,  so I was delighted to receive this gorgeous blue scarf with silver feathers from MSH, worth £12.  What I love about Moi-Meme is that for some items, such as the scarf, if you aren't happy with the colour you received or you would prefer another print, which is shown in their leaflet which accompanies the box, you can send it back and request the one you want!  So you are guaranteed to get what you actually want which is brilliant.  


Finally I received a Chilly's bottle and a gorgeous marble coaster!  The Chilly's bottle is one of those bottles that keeps hot things hot for 12 hours and cold things cold for 24 hours.  This is something I have wanted again for ages, but there is always something I need more than this bottle, so I was so happy to receive it, and I love the colour.  There are so any different varieties of this bottle so again, as before, if you preferred a different colour or print, you can send it back which is brilliant.  The bottle is worth between £20 to £25.  The coaster is from Blond and Stone in Kent.  These are worth £25 for a pack of 4.



Overall I am delighted with everything in this box.  I love trying out new luxury skincare that I haven't heard about before, and I'm loving the lifestyle products in this months box too.  I'm definitely keeping my subscription open and the next box should come in July.

The total value of the Moi Meme spring box is £105 and you can find more information here on their website!

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Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Foamie! The 2 - in - 1 shower sponge!

I love getting to play with products I've never seen or heard of before!  And last week, Foamie sent me their new 2 - in - 1 shower sponges and I was fierce intrigued altogether.


The concept is that inside of the sponge is a solid cream cleanser that foams up when the sponge is soaked with water and you give it an aul squeeze.  Maybe a few aul squeezes.  And according to the press release, it promises to indulge the mind, body and soul.  I've only used one of them so far and thanks to the deadly little scratch and sniff sticker on the front of the package and I knew that I'd love the Aloe Spa one because I love anything clean smelling and fresh in the summer.  It's a gorgeous scent and really is spa like, and so far, I think it's indulged my mind and body, I'm still working on the soul.


It's been a while since I've used a sponge in the shower, having been converted to a shower puff years ago, and maybe I've just gotten delicate in my old age, but I thought the sponge was a bit scratchy on my skin.  Nothing major, I just felt like I couldn't give myself a proper scrub with it unless I'd foamed it up a lorra lot.  But the scent is gorgeous, the foam doesn't leave my skin feeling dry or tight and I'm enjoying using it.


Foamie say that they're perfect for on the go, holidays and the gym and I'd agree with maybe two of those suggestions.  See, the Foamies really do foam a lot, and I've had my issues trying to rinse it out, because when I try to squeeze out any excess water, it starts to foam again!  So if you were going to the gym, or were only staying somewhere for the night, I think you'd have to bring a plastic bag with you to keep it in.  Otherwise it'd be a wet foamy mess.  If you've somewhere to hang it and let it dry that way, you're grand.  And I think it's a deadly one for holidays because it saves you from having to bring shower gel, you can pack it in your carry on and providing you pick a scent you like, you're sorted!


Foamie come in four fragrances, Beauty Fruity (I'm not a fan of sweet smelling shower products so Joanne, you can have this!), Mocca Peel (I'm not sure I want to smell like coffee, I prefer pouring it in my face) and Men (this smells GORGEOUS! Well the scratch and sniff bit does).  The Foamie family are free from parabens, silicones, colourings, sulfates and mineral oils, are 100% vegan and cruelty free.


They're €10 each and are available in Sam McCauley Chemists, McCabes Pharmacy, Shaws Department Stores, Mulligans Pharmacy, Molloys Pharmacy and independent pharmacies nationwide.

Do these tickle your pickle?


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Monday, June 25, 2018

New launches from Image Skincare reviewed!

It's no secret that I love me some Image Skincare and this year they've launched some deadly new products - two reformulations and two brand new products, which my face and I have been testing out pretty much since the launch day.  As you know, with me and skincare, I test them out for at least a month, sometimes longer if I'm using other products alongside them, hence the delay in this post.  If you're thinking about investing in some new skincare, grab a cuppa and sit down, because this is a big aul post!


First up, we have the Vital C Hydrating Water Burst (€56).


This intrigued me from the get go because I'd never heard of anything like it.  Described as "a lightweight, transformational gel texture formulated to burst into intense hydration", my withered face was ready.  I remember back at the launch, Catherine from the Renaissance was explaining how to use it and yes, I forgot about it until about three weeks into using it and then she popped into my head like a vision of skincare knowledge.   She'd said to apply the Water Burst to your face, smoothing a layer of it over the skin before patting it in and she said we'd be able to feel the gel turn into a water.  And I do!  It's mad and it doesn't get old, much like myself....  I like using this in the morning on cleansed skin under my moisturiser and my skin literally drinks it up as it releases a flood of antioxidants, hyaluronic acid, vitamins and peptides.  And yes, I'm sometimes inclined to apply it a couple of times on days where I've no makeup on and want to keep the hydration topped up.  It doesn't leave any residue on my skin, it smells like oranges and I absolutely love using it.  I had somebody message me on Instagram saying she had problems with the packaging when she was going on holidays as it spilled in her makeup bag because the twisty cap opened itself in transit.  So that's worth noting if you're thinking of bringing it away.

The next product I've probably tormented you with talking about is the Vital C Hydrating Overnight Masque (€59.50).  I.  Love.  This.  Ok bye.


Anything that I can let work its magic while I conk out for the night is a winner in my book, but this actually lived up to my expectations and more.  It has a lightweight gel texture that my skin sucks up between applying it and throwing myself into the bed.  I could probably apply more of it, but I don't.  I'm trying to ration it.

If I'm just being picky, I'd have loved a little spatula to take the product out rather than sticking my fingers in.  Who am I kidding, I'd have lost that spatula in less than 30 seconds.  If hygiene is an issue for you, use a cotton bud to take out some of the product and allow it to work its magic.  This contains blue-green extract which is a natural retinoid alternative.  Retinoids scare me and I remember lashing on Image Skincare's Overnight Retinol Masque one night, like properly went to town with it, delighted with life, only to watch Jennifer Rock talking about it on Instastories five minute later and she'd recommended to apply a small amount and then wash it off to begin with.

After being delighted with life, I was afraid for my life and took it easy with that masque, but I can confirm with this one, I've had no issues whatsoever.  It has a mineral complex too which helps enhance skin tone and smoothes and energises skin.  Every single time I use this, and I'm trying not to use it every night to make it last longer, I wake up with plump, hydrated, nourished skin and I swear my elevenses (frown lines, I can't get away with calling them laugh lines) look diminished and my skin is so smooth and soft to the touch.  It's a whopper masque and I love that we get to work together in that it works hard treating my skin while I sleep.

The Ageless Total Pure Hyaluronic Filler (€85.50) is described as a topical filler, promising to give a youthful look without a needle.


I've been very open about my Botox experience last year and haven't had fillers yet, and thanks to this beaut, I've no interest in getting them anytime soon.  I love using this on the areas that I feel need to be re-plumped, like my elevenses, and the smile lines around my mouth and this acts as a sponge, bringing hydration to those areas and essentially filling in those lines from beneath the skin.  This is the one that I've been using the least frequently, just because my lines aren't that bad yet, well I don't think they are anyway...  Shurrup yew!  But twice a week this goes on at night and when if the time comes where I need a little extra somethin' somethin' to plump out my skin, I have this ready to full on.  Fillers scare me.  This doesn't.

Finally we have the Vital C Hydrating ACE Serum (€64.50) which helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and dryness, thanks to the infusion of vitamins A, C and E along with antioxidants and five amino acids to support collage.


This has three forms of vitamin C.  This is brand new information because I did not know there was more than one form of vitamin C.  Learning something new every day.  I haven't used the original version of this, so I can't compare them, but again, my skin is just loving this.  I don't use it every day, but in conjunction with the rest of my skincare, it's slotted in perfectly, absorbing quickly and turning me into Benjamin Button.

I'm 41, soon to be 42 and I'm not afraid to age.  Ok we'll forget the mini meltdown I had the year I was turning 40, but that was less about aging and more about where I was in life.  One of Image's hashtags is #AgeLater and I love that.  It's going to happen to us all, this aging malarkey, and I'm ok with embracing it, but ain't nothin' wrong with delaying it slightly eh?

You can find your local Image Skincare stockist on their website and as much as this was a deadly review and all, there's nothing like getting a consultation with a professional who will be able to recommend the right products for your skin.  I am but one bridie with a specific skin type that might not match yours, so chat to a profesh, especially when it comes to spendy skincare.  You have to listen to me, I'm most likely older than you!


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Wednesday, June 20, 2018

No7 Serum Boost Sheet Masks! AD

This is a sponsored post in collaboration with No7

Hands up who's a busy bridie these days?  I feel like I don't know where the last six months have gone and can't believe we're halfway through the year already!  With having gone freelance at the start of the year, I feel like life is crazier than ever, and yet I'm loving it.  I work more than I did when I had a full time job and did all of this outside of it, but in recent months, I noticed that I've less of a work/life balance.

Over the last few weeks though, I've made a concerted effort to switch off more and to give myself boundaries.  I try to unplug from social media by 9.30, I turn off my emails and have some proper me time.  It's easier said than done!  But I'm trying, and spending less time scrolling aimlessly through social media is most definitely good for the mental health.

In the last couple of weeks, I've had the best excuse to have some me time thanks to No7 and their new Serum Boost Sheet Masks!  And if you're someone who can forget to unwind, having something physical like this is a good reminder.


Now, No7's Serum Boost Sheet Masks are brilliant on three counts.  They're actually brilliant on more, but these are my favourite bits.

1. They've a week's worth of serum in each masks, so if you're someone who isn't consistent with your skincare routine, this does the work for you (and you get to relax for 15 minutes...).
2. They promise results in just two weeks (and you get to relax for 15 minutes...).
3. They have hooks so you can attach them to your face and it'll stay put as you go about your business (and you get to relax for 15 minutes or multitask if you're incapable of relaxing!)


Each mask comes in packs of four and depending on your skincare goals, you have a choice of which set to pick up.


The No7 Lift & Luminate Triple Action Serum Boost Sheet Mask (€33/pack of 4) is powered by Matrixyl 3000 Plus, No7's most effective anti-wrinkle technology, alongside an advanced firming complex containing hyaluronic acid and hibiscus, not to mention the unique brightening complex containing vitamin C, all working away on your skin while you're taking it easy.


The No7 Restore & Renew Face & Neck Multi Action Serum Boost Sheet Mask (€34/pack of 4) is my favourite of the three and is the one I've been trialling first.  How many times have you applied a sheet mask and squeezed out the extra serum to work into your neck?  This one fits over the face and neck, making life a bit easier!  It's packed full of No7's anti-wrinkle technology, the brightening complex along with calcium and amino acids and after two uses, the face and neck feels firmer (my chins agree), skin tone is even and skin texture is visibly improved.  And what I love about this is that after I've removed it, my skin drinks up the rest of the serum quickly leaving no residue.


Finally we have the No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum Boost Sheet Mask (€32/ pack of 4) which again has the Matrixyl 3000 Plus technology along with hyaluronic acid which you probably know helps hydrate and re-plump the skin.  As I'm withered a lot of the time, I love anything that has HA in it.  It promises a visible reduction in the appearance of lines with the skin looking overall younger.  This is next on the list of masks to try.

Now it's time for Karen's Tips That You Can Choose Whether To Follow Or Not But You Really Should Because I Know What I'm Talking About.

1. This summer has been a hot one so far, so if you want to soothe your skin, give yourself a little wakeup call, or if you're just feeling a bit fruity, then put the masks in the fridge and let them cool you down while looking after your skin.

2. If you're going on holidays, you can bring them in place of your serum, freeing up valuable space and can pack them in your carry on too.  I dare you to wear it on the plane and scare the flight attendants.  Do it.  Take a selfie and send it to me and I will love you forever.

3. The hooks.  THE HOOKS!  They're brilliant because they attach the mask to your face and if putting your feet up isn't your thing, you can still have those 15 minutes to yourself and do something else.  It might be reading a magazine or a book, doing a bit of gardening (maybe do it out the back garden so as not to scare your neighbours).

4. When you remove the mask, I like to rub it over the backs of my hands and then pat whatever essence is left on my face into my skin.  I usually apply them in the evenings, so after removing them, I continue with my night time skincare routine (minus the serum) and go about my business.

Basically these are a way to pack your skin full of potent skincare, while taking 15 minutes to yourself a week, whittling down your skincare routine for the rest of the week, and walking away with results after two weeks.

I've listed the RRP for each pack above, but they're on introductory offer until July 3rd when you can get €6.50 off each pack, so no excuse not to stock up!  They're available exclusively in Boots Ireland and on Boots.ie.    I've loved using them so far and will be making my way through the rest of the masks over the summer.

UPDATE!  Boots No7 currently have an offer where you can save €10 on No7 products with the code NO7SAVE10 when you spend €50!  The offer ends on the 1st of July and might be the perfect excuse to stock up!

Will you be trying them?
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Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Clarins Water Lip Stains review, photos, swatches!

If you're going on holidays this summer, actually, even if you're not, you're going to want to check out the new Clarins Water Lip Stains.  They've just launched, are €21, and are perfect for the warmer months!

I was sent the four shades to play with and as well as being super cute to photograph, they're bloody brilliant!  If you're someone who likes the no makeup makeup look, a sheer layer will do the trick, if you want something budge proof, look no further and if you want something that doesn't have any upkeep, keep on reading.


I had the swatches on the back of my hand for a maximum of 90 seconds and they stayed put for ages!   Right to left we have Rose Water, Orange Water, Red Water and Violet Water.  In the photos below, I applied two thin coats, FYI.  I wanted you to be able to distinguish the shades, but note that a lighter layer will give a lighter finish and a thicker layer... you get the jist!


The very first time I tried these out, I used Orange Water and I didn't remove some of the product from the brush, so was left with a killer orange lip as a really thick opaque coat went on.  It never occurred to me to wipe the brush off the side, but I loved it!  For these photos though, I made sure not to make a mess and applied two thin coats.  Obviously one coat will give a sheer finish, but you can build them up easily and that's what I love about them.  You can keep them in your handbag, apply a light layer for work and if you're heading out afterwards, apply a couple of layers and boom, job done!

Once they dry, they set, but it feels like you've nothing on your lips.  They don't dry out my lips, but for times where I want a bit of slip, I apply one of the Instant Light Natural Lip Perfectors or a lip balm over the top.  These don't transfer and really are budge proof.  I get about 3 hours with them before I see them starting to fade and I haven't had any issues with them bleeding past the lip line.

Want to see them in action?


Rose Water is a light pink that would make a really lovely spring shade.  I don't usually go for pinks, but this one has just enough duskiness to it to stop it from being too bright or too bubblegum.  Totally wearable.


I love an orange lip in the summer and Orange Water is a whopper shade!  It doesn't make my teeth look yellow which is tres important and it goes on evenly, which they all do to be fair.


Now Red Water is a red I can get on board with because I don't have to worry about it moving, transferring to my teeth or up my face (it's been known to happen, shut up).


Violet Water is almost a dark pinky plum on me, not quite violet and I love it!  It's one I'll get lots of wear out of in the autumn when lips get darker.

These contain aloe vera extract which helps prevent lips from drying along with organic raspberry water which helps soften the lips.  I've tried stains in the past which have been grand, nothing special, but these are the best ones I've tried to date.  My lips have been in great condition recently, so I don't know if these would cling to dry patches, but if I have an issue with that in the future, I'll be sure to let you know.

Go on the Clarins ye little beaut!  Will you be trying these?  Let me know which shade speaks to you!
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