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Clarins Instant Light Lip Balm Perfector

Clarins are so good at spring – and their new Instant Light Lip Balm Perfectors are right up there in the realms of prettiness.

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Part skin care part make up, they have been designed to moisturise, plump and illuminate the lips, giving just a sheer hint of colour. I am trying to get into the routine of wearing lipstick as my ‘face refresher’ but sometimes you just want to grab something that’s not too in your face but still gives it a little bit of a boost, and these are spot on.

The combination of wild mango and shea which is rich in fatty acids help to restore the hydrolipidic film, leaving lips nourished and soft. This cold weather can really batter your lips, especially when you’re in and out of central heated rooms, don’t drink enough water and generally ignore your mouth unless you’re stuffing chocolate in it.

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Available in 6 shades, pictured here are Rose, Coral, Orange and Red. They also have the balms in My Pink, which reacts to your own PH levels, to give you a personalised pink.

As always with Clarins, they smell amazing and they really do feel nice on the lips, not greasy or sticky in any way, it’s exactly like wearing a lightweight lip balm with a hint of colour. They’re the perfect size for purses and pockets and you don’t need to have a mirror handy to apply them, so they’re great to grab and go.

My favourite colour is rose, it’s just that right pink for me, not too pale, not too dark. I’m working up the courage to wear orange, maybe when it’s a little bit warmer outside and I’m a little bit less ‘blue’ tinged!

The Instant Light Lip Balm Perfectors cost £18 each and are available from Clarins.

PR Sample

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Don’t fear the morning mirror – try these tips.

It creeps at you in the middle of the night. The thought of it stalks you as you wake up in the morning. It strains you with every step towards the bathroom. It’s the horror of your first look in the mirror, and it’s becoming more regrettable every morning. Especially as the winter weather rages, it’s difficult to stay looking good. But with a few of these tips we can help you look in that mirror with a newfound confidence.

So, what should you do?

There are millions of articles claiming to know the best way to tighten skin, but only a few of them are worth trying. Using lifting and plumping creams, having a good skincare regime and following a healthy diet will help to reduce the puffy, dull look that can make even the best skin look exhausted.

REAL beauty sleep

Here in the UK, we’re pretty busy. We work more hours than anyone else in Europe and hold the rush of never-ending business in higher esteem than the pope. And it’s making us look more ravaged than a ravaged thing.

We all need your beauty sleep, at least eight hours of it. Studies have shown that people on the more exhausted end of the spectrum are, in fact, less attractive than those who love a lie-in. Which is nice. If you’re running around like a headless chicken, you’ll never be able to get to sleep on time. To stop yourself staring at the walls, lull yourself into a calm before you head to bed. Reading a book for a few hours will usually do the trick, as well as staying away from digital devices like tablets or your telly.

After a good night’s sleep you’ll wake up looking brighter and peppier. And that first look in the mirror won’t be quite as much of a challenge.

A fulfilling 15 minutes

If you’re consigned to your sofa all day (you simply must watch every season of Game of Thrones again) then getting up from the couch feels like trying to push a tractor uphill. But not all exercise has to be about rigorous workouts longer than a Lord of the Rings marathon. All you have to do is take 15 minutes out of your day to get off your settee and burn some fat. If you’re struggling to motivate yourself, shove on your favourite albums and workout to that.

After a while, you’ll be bursting to add five minutes more to your workout time. Soon, you’ll be looking fitter and staring into your mirror liking the more awake, healthier you.

Written by: Paul Watson

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It’s all about….

Comfort.

Anyone else feel like they’re just starting to come out the other side of Xmas excess? After a couple of weeks of eating and drinking too much, staying up late, lazing around and just generally not having any ‘oomph’ – I’m starting to (I say starting to, I’m not 100% full of life just yet!) get back into the swing of things. We’re back on the school runs, back to work, after school clubs, and just general busy business, but at the same time I just want to hibernate for a little bit longer, so I’m all about wrapping up in my huge cocoon coat, big scarves and comfy flats.

Obviously I’m behind all the fashion bloggers as I’ve just noticed Stan Smiths *everywhere* and now they’re on my wish-list. Flat, trainers, comfortable, stylish. What’s not to love?! I’m so over wearing heels! Only decision is which colour to get?

I really need to get the right red lippie. I keep saying it’ll be my thing and I never get round to it. I can’t carry off heavy eye make up, and I can’t be bothered with the faff first thing in the morning, so the whole ‘whack a bright lip on and wake your face up’ really appeals to me. Except I can’t find the one. All the shades I’ve got are either too orange or too blue. Apparently Mac Ruby Woo is the one to try, so that’s next on my list.

That’s my January (and probably February) uniform sorted.

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Birch box January 2015

Hit Refresh. That’s the theme for the first BirchBox of 2015 and it’s a good one! Some of my favourite brands are included in this months box, REN, HealGel, Stila, what’s not to love!

It’s a collaboration with Women’s Health with an exclusive offer for BirchBox subscribers, to save 52% on a subscription to the magazine. That’s 10 issues for £18!

As always, BirchBox like to give us little boosts, and this time we have a booklet of 12 bite-sized challenges, quick, easy ways to make changes to your health and wellbeing.

BirchBox Jan 3

Birchbox Jan1

Inside the box, as I’ve already said, is a whole bunch of happiness for me! The first thing that caught my eye was the full size Stila Lip Glaze (£15) it’s a gorgeous, nude colour that will suit everyone, and sit well over all the nude lipsticks I have sitting on my dressing table.

Next up is the Philip Kingsley Body Building Conditioner 20ml (£19 for full size) This helps to transform flat hair, and help seal flyaway. It’s a wheat-protein conditioner that’s more suited to fine, limp hair which I don’t have, but I’ve heard amazing things about Philip Kingsley and would love to try this brand on my thick, long, long hair!

REN Glycolactic Radiance Renwal Mask – now, I adore REN as a brand, some of my favourite products are theirs so this is something I’m really looking forward to trying. It’s down as radiance in a tube, a fast working, exfoliating treatment that improves texture, tone and combats congestion. (£30 full size)

HealGel Intensive. I love all HealGel products. You can see my full review here. This protects and repairs skin with organic silicone, collagen boosting peptides and arnica. It smells amazing, feels amazing and works like a dream. I’m quite pleased to have a sample size of this one to throw in my bag! (£37.50 for full size but oh so worth it!)

activbod Cooling Finish Lotion (£12 full size) This is a brand I haven’t heard of but it sounds like a good product for the bloke to use after his squash sessions! It’s a menthol packed invigorating lotion designed to be used after a workout. (See, not really me that one!)

Embrace Matcha Green Tea (£24.99) I’m not really a green tea lover, I wish I was because I’m well aware of the benefits, but I will give this one a go, just out of curiosity. It’s 100% natural with 10 times the antioxidants of regular green tea. You’re meant to take 1/2 a teaspoon and whisk it into hot or cold water, or you can blend it into juices or smoothies.

Another lifestyle product is the Pilates Band £7.99 which is a BirchBox exclusive! It tones, increases strength and improves muscle endurance when you incorporate it into your workout. I love pilates and yoga so I really need to get my backside back into gear. This band may have also been stolen by my 5 year old to use as a “Spider-man muscle builder” See, something for everyone in the BirchBoxes!

So what do you think to the January box? Birchbox costs £10 a month plus p&p and you can subscribe to Birchbox here. All the products and brands featured inside this month’s box can be picked up in full size with free delivery in the Birchbox shop!

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The Daily Face with Clarins True Radiance

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A few weeks ago I asked my go to girls on Twitter to recommend a glow enhancing foundation and I was given quite a few names to try out, as Clarins is probably my favourite brand for foundation, I was so pleased when their True Radiance arrived just in time for Christmas. Their Extra Comfort foundation and Ever Matte are the two bases I go for, depending on how my skin is feeling/behaving so I had high hopes for this one.

The glass bottle/pump is nice and weighty and has the typical Clarins style, looks fab on the dressing table as well. I would like one in a smaller, portable tube to take out with me for touch ups, a compact version would be perfect, but then it probably wouldn’t do what the liquid does!

I was sent shade 103 in Ivory (always Ivory!) and as always, it’s the perfect shade for me. I have always struggled to find the right colour with other brands, either too dark by one or two levels, or too yellow, Clarins always seems to match.

True Radiance SPF 15 is such a lovely liquid foundation, I apply it with my Real Techniques buffing brush as it seems to blend and blur like magic, and it feels lovely on the skin, moisturising and hydrating without feeling like it’s going to slip off your face at any moment. The best part of this foundation however, is the way it looks once it’s on. It creates a hugely radiant ‘glow’ with medium coverage. I don’t know how it works, but it just does.  I don’t have sallow skin as such, but even with freckles my face can look a bit flat, especially when there is literally no sun outside. True Radiance is a lightweight, moisturising formula that glides onto skin perfectly, boosting natural radiance and luminosity. It reveals the skin’s natural luminosity with the anti-pollution action of Moringa seed plant extract, boosts natural radiance with light-reflecting pigments and has 24-hour hydration.

I love it, as in – see my reflection in the mirror after I’ve done my make up and still feel surprised at how good my skin looks – love. This foundation is going to be on my re-purchase list over and over again.

The rest of my ‘ugh we’re back to normal, early morning school runs and work, quick get out the door before 8.10am’ face consists of Clarins Instant Concealer in 01 (seriously, this concealer is beyond amazing) Clarins Ombre Matte Eyeshadow in 01, Nude Beige and my new mascara love, Smashbox Full Exposure. I *hate* plastic mascara wands, I will only buy bristle brushes! This one is fab, you can build it up without it clogging and even the one coat looks good. The usual brushes by Real Techniques, a bit of cream blush and I’m away.

True Radiance is available from Clarins for £27.00 (30ml)

*PR Sample of Foundation

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Bioskin Junior Range

Bioskin Junior is a range of natural skincare products for babies and kids by Salcura, designed to be used by those with dry skin and eczema. Neither of mine suffer with eczema but they do occasionally get patches of dry skin that irritate them and take a while to go, so we always use moisturising, unscented products in the bath for them.

The products contain at least 92& natural ingredients which means they’re not harsh on the skin and they’ve got to be kinder than any steroid based stuff that most people have to use when they suffer with eczema. (I have it on my hands and the cream for that is bad enough)

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We were sent the Face and Body Wash and Bathtime Shampoo (which is my favourite of the two!) The face and body wash smells gorgeous! As the name suggests it’s suitable for face and body but I didn’t use it on The Boy’s face, we stuck to using it as his shower gel/soap. It didn’t leave his skin feeling squeaky, which I hate, but it also didn’t leave him as slippery as a baby eel, which is probably worse! I also loved the bottle, once I figured out how to open it! No fiddling around with screw tops, you just push down and the lid pops up. Which would be a huge help if you’re holding onto a tiny baby!

The Junior Shampoo cleanses and nourishes hair and scalp areas whilst being kind to dry, flaky and eczema-prone skin. Had this been around when both mine were teeny babies I would have used it while we were going through the cradle cap phase, GG suffered for ages with it, I remember covering her head with olive oil! It’s recommended for babies from 3 months up, and they suggest using the Shampoo as a maintenance product alongside the Daily Nourishing Spray to cleanse, soften and soothe the skin at bath time. Again, it smells delicious! Lavender is the main scent, which I always hope will help send The Boy to sleep that little bit quicker…! And, alway a winner, it doesn’t sting the eyes. Even though TB is 6 in March we still battle with hair washing, I’m the only one allowed to do it because he can’t stand water going in his eyes (even though he will happily spend the whole time under water in the swimming pool….!) We didn’t use it on GG because she has long, thick hair like me so she has to use the same products as me, but it works fab on TB’s hair.

Both products cost around £7 for 200ml and are available here.

PR Sample

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