BeautyBlogger

Rodial Cleansing Balms

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Possibly the most used in any skincare routine is a Cleansing Balm. If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen the balm feature in my daily routines, but I’ve rarely ever stopped to properly tell you about it and why I love it so much.

Of course the brand is controversial from its product naming perspective, but lets turn a blind eye on that for a moment and focus on the actual product, ingredients and its performance.

Cleansing Balms – I wouldn’t know how to cleanse without balms and oils! They’re the very cornerstone of proper cleansing or makeup removal for me. One thing that irks me slightly with most balms is their packaging. Usually housed in glass or plastic pots and we need to dip our paws in there to scoop and smear goodness all over our faces.

What I LOVE about these two rockstars here, they are housed in plastic bottle with a pump and no paw dipping business. A pump that actually works (some brands I’ve had issues with pumps). Its one of those pumping mechanisms where it would scooop every last bit out.

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Next is the Texture: lovely lush balms! Whilst Glamtox is slightly more denser balm (right in tray), Bee Venom is slightly runnier in texture (left in tray). In terms of application and schmearability (such technical words ;)) they glide like a dream. Remove makeup efficiently and effectively. No eye stinging either.

Scent wise I couldn’t choose one over the other, Glamtox is slightly more herbalish scent while Bee Venom reminds me of their Superfood cleanser scent. Subtle sweet floral. I know the name Bee Venom and its scent just dont correlate with each other.

Some balms  (e.g. Boots Botanics Balm – click on link for full review) dont emulsify, aka dont turn into milky lushness when mixed with water. However these two, are BFF’s with water, emulsify beautifully and you wouldn’t need a wash/face cloth. Although I always use a wash/face cloth (proper cleansing ritual).  They leave my skin thoroughly cleansed and not dry or stripped. My skin feels comfortable after cleansing and ready for next skincare step.

Glamtox Claimshelp to improve the appearance of uneven skintone and hyperpigmentation. Skin will be left looking brighter, nourished by vitamins and collagen production stimulated for firmer, plumper looking skin.

Bee Venom ClaimsWonder ingredient bee venom (listed third last ingredient) works to plump fine lines and wrinkles and firms the skin ……………. improve the appearance of uneven skin tone. 

Big claims, but the balms are on the skin for such a short while, I dont think they stand true to such claims.

On the flip side, I’ve used both of them as Hydrating Masks (left on skin while I clean the entire house) and my skin appears well hydrated and plump. Although nothing happened to my acne scars or pigmentation.

Glamtox Ingredients: Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Glycerin, PEG-8 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides, Glyceryl Dibehenate, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Oil, Polyglyceryl-3-Diisostearate, Tribehenin, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Polysorbate 20, Glyceryl Behenate, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Oil, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate, Salycilic Acid, Parfum (Fragrance), Limonene, Linalool, Dipropylene Glycol, Sodium Palmytoylproline, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Extract, Nymphaea Alba (Water Lily) Flower Extract, Butylene Glycol, Tocopherol

Bee Venom Ingredients: Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond ) Oil, Glycerin, Glyceryl Behenate, PEG-8 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides, Polyglyceryl-3 Diisostearate, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Polysorbate 20, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Oil, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Dipropylene Glycol, Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate, Salicylic Acid, Sodium Palmitoyl Proline, Limonene, Parfum (Fragrance), Aqua (Water), Nymphaea Alba (Water Lily) Flower Extract, Tocopherol, Linalool, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Fruit Extract, Geraniol, Farnesol, Citral, Bee Venom, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate.
Cautions: Do not use if you have an allergy to bee stings. A patch test prior to use is recommended. If signs of irritation occur discontinue use immediately.

Have you used Rodial cleansing balms? Did you have a similar experience to mine?

HHW.com

xx

Dr. Dennis Gross Ferulic + Retinol Serums

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Dr Dennis Gross has recently launched a new serum called Ferulic + Retinol Wrinkle Recovery Overnight Serum. I was left perplexed at this launch, considering I’ve already used, repurchased and loved Ferulic Acid + Retinol Brightening Solution. That’s where my quest to decode the formula began (to the best of my ability, neither am I Dr. DG nor am I Chemist!).

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As I decoded the ingredients, claims and performance, it made more sense which serum to use by who and when. Whilst the similarity of names throws you off, they’re really intended for different purposes.

OLD – BRIGHTENING SOLUTION

NEW – OVERNIGHT SERUM

Clinical/Professional Strength Serum Overnight Serum
Sun damage, uneven skin tone, brown spots, scars, overall brightening Appearance of wrinkles, recovers the look of firmness, and retexturizes skin’s appearance
Texture: Colorless Gel Liquid Texture: Light ‘Creamish’ Serum
Packaging: Brown glass bottle with pipette $88 – 30ml Packaging: Brown plastic bottle with pump (big tick from me) $88 – 30ml
Audience: Anyone really with sun damage or uneven skin tone Audience: Possibly someone with signs of aging, although can be used as a preventative measure too
Performance: In my experience of 2 bottles down, I think it is brilliant with overall brightening and dealing with brown spots, and new scars from those bastards we reluctantly welcome each month. Skin appears more refined and even toned. Performance: In my limited experience (3-4 uses), I think it’s more moisturizing on skin and really an all-round serum. I don’t have visible signs of aging yet (yet being an operative word) so wont be able to comment directly on its claims.

Ingredient Summary for both formulations:

All hard hitters, performance oriented ingredients are in the beginning of the list, whilst preservatives towards the end (and that’s how it should be!). Making it quite a desirable formulation.

Formulated with Antioxidants and skin Brighteners like Arbutin, derivative of Azelaic Acid, Licorice.

Of course an addition of our beloved acids too, like Ferulic, Salicylic, Glycolic, and Mandelic.

One Word: Niacinamide (listed as Third Ingredient) aka vitamin B3 and nicotinic acid, niacinamide is a potent cell-communicating ingredient that offers multiple benefits for aging skin. Assuming skin is being protected from sun exposure, niacinamide can improve skin’s elasticity, dramatically enhance its barrier function, help erase discolorations, and revive skin’s healthy tone and texture (Source: Beautypedia).

Acids: Ferulic, Gallic, Linoleic, Linolenic, Mandellic, and Lactic

Water, Ethoxydiglycol (solvent used as thinner), Propylene Glycol, Glycerin, Potassium Azeloyl Diglycinate (Azelaic Acid Derivative) , Ferulic Acid, Retinol, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Arctostaphylos Uva Ursi Leaf Extract, Arbutin (skin brightening)Morus Nigra Fruit Extract, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract, Salicylic Acid, Glycolic Acid, Mandelic Acid, Hexylresorcinol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Tocopherol, Panthenol, Quercetin, Disodium Lauriminodipropionate Tocopheryl Phosphates (derivative of Vitamin E used for scarring), Ubiquinone (Co EnzymeQ10), Lecithin, Disodium EDTA, PVM/MA Decadiene Crosspolymer, BHT, Urea, Polysorbate 20, Potassium Hydroxide, Phenoxyethanol. Water, DiCaprylyl Carbonate (plant derived emollient), Niacinamide, Cetyl Alcohol (fatty alcohol aka good alcohol), Propanediol, Isostearyl Alcohol (fatty alcohol aka good alcohol), Jojoba Esters, Retinol, Ferulic Acid, Collagen Amino Acids, Sodium Hyaluronate, Hexylresorcinol, Ellagic Acid (phenol antioxidant), Gallic Acid ( type of phenolic acid, found in gallnuts, sumac, witch hazel, tea leaves, oak bark, and other plants), Silybum Marianum Ethyl Ester, Tocopherol, Phospholipids, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Linoleic Acid, Linolenic Acid, Mandelic Acid, Lactic Acid, Sodium PCA, Retinyl Palmitate/Carrot Polypeptide, Retinyl Palmitate, Glycerin, Evodia Rutaecarpa Fruit Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Wax, Acacia Decurrens Flower Wax, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Polyglycerin-3, Tricaprylin, Acrylates/Carbamate Copolymer, Butylene Glycol, BHT, Butylene Glycol Cocoate, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Xanthan Gum, Ethylcellulose, Disodium EDTA, Sodium Hydroxide, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Extract, Citrus Limon (Lemon) Peel Extract, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Octoxynol-9, Phenoxyethanol.

One thing I’m yet to try is layering these two fellas, Brightening Solution after toning, followed by Overnight Serum.

Hope you found this ‘distinguishing the serums’ post helpful.

HHW.com

xx

The Rare Indigo Balm by Mahalo Care

Mahalo Care was introduced into my life at the ‘A Night for Green Beauty’ event earlier in August 2015. I met beautiful Maryna and she shared her introductory kit with me. I experienced the Mahalo Magic (as I like to call it) with Pele Mask (face mask), Vitality Elixir (face oil), Vacation Glow (body oil) and Mahalo Balm (multi purpose balm).

The packaging, scent, textures and more importantly the performance of these products set me in the right frame for wanting more. This post is not a review on each of those products but a review on The Rare Indigo Balm (recent release).

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WHAT is it? The Rare Indigo Balm site says:

This radically-different soothing renewal treatment is bursting with formidable anti-inflammatory phytonutrient infusion, collagen-fostering vitamin C ester, high-content of antioxidants and replenishing essential fatty-acids  to lower oxidation damage in stressed tissue, allowing the skin to be hydrated, nourished and youthful. The Rare Indigo® beauty balm is supercharged with clinically-tested rare extract of the indigo plant and potent anti-inflammatory, chamazulene-rich actives, making this skin-renewing balm an opulent skin treat.

Packaging: Housed in a classic Mahalo bamboo jar (twist open), which is relatively light weight and great for travel. Once I twist open the jar, it mesmerizes me, holds me captive and whisks me away in another world. I really really really wish Mahalo would release a perfume in this scent, and I will be the first to get it.

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Aroma: Suave, crisp with vanilla-sweet undertones, highlighted with refined florals of rose otto, ambrette (hibiscus), helichrysum, ylang ylang and iris. 

I couldn’t have described it better, its exactly every word spelled out. When I take a whiff, these are the words that come to you: crisp, night floral developing to sweet vanilla at back end. Yeah I’m very raw at describing scents.

Mahalo also adds, It swirls around your nose like a refreshing night-air, only to dissipate, leaving you relaxed, and renewed – Yessss without a shadow of doubt!

This balm can be used by anyone especially with dry, dehydrated, stressed, inflamed, irritated skin would make a perfect candidate. Although if you dislike or are sensitive to scents, fragrances or essentials oils please proceed with caution or consult with Mahalo.

I tend to use this after toning, OR after serum instead of my usual face oil or moisturizer. On days with a bitter wind chill factor (-25C), I like to use this under makeup (keeps skin hydrated and makeup sits better), this is a treat and pamper for skin to be enjoyed.

 

Rare Indigo balm the tiniest bit goes a long way. The texture and consistency is the one factor that baffles me the most and leaves with a loss of words. Here’s why:

Texture – solid balm (especially during cooler months) but it almost feels like ‘gel oil balm’. If you’ve used this, please help me with describing texture. I don’t know how Mahalo achieved that since the consistency is that of a balm. Once spread on skin, it possesses the texture of an oil. No greasy feel on skin, instantly absorbs, the aroma lingers on the skin for a bit (so I keep sniffing myself).

So you ask when can this product be used? Well anytime, but especially delighful in a Spa routine after an intense peel or microderm, OR long haul flights (yes my flight time from Chicago – Melbourne kills my skin) OR Wine tasting trips, OR Desert safari (seriously!) OR sitting in a Heated environment all day!

The situations I have described are quite dramatic but, this balm is incredible for hydrating and plumping my skin. From a Raisin to a Grape. Plus it has helped me soothe irritation and slight inflammation. It’s just a fabulous treat, I find myself walking past my skincare drawer and I open this jar only to inhale the heavenly aroma.

As with any balm the versatility is excellent. Ideally used on face, but like any other balm I perceive it to be multi purpose and multi tasking. Cuticles, hands, lips, under eyes. Personally I’ll stick with my face.

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HOW does it compare to its sibling aka Mahalo Balm?

Just like siblings – they’re related and nurtured by same mother, although they have different qualities, ingredients, colour and personality.

Maryna mentioned on her Instagram post that she has poured her heart in each of these lush bamboo pots and when you’d use this balm you will completely feel it and fall head over heels.

$110 for 30ml

HHW.com

xx

Kama Ayurveda – Kumkumadi Facial Elixir

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Ayurveda is the science of life and well-being. The oldest documented body of holistic medical knowledge, it is a system of plant oils and herbs originating in India over 6,000 years ago. After centuries of testing, Ayurvedic science has proven effective, alleviating concerns about side effects.

Kama Ayurveda, a skincare brand from India, established on virtues of a holistic life through ancient Ayurvedic Medicine and Science. One of the first products I tried from their extensive range was KumKumadi Beauty Fluid.

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ClaimsA unique 100% Ayurvedic anti-ageing serum that hydrates cleans and illuminates the skin. Miraculous Beauty Fluid is a unique blend of oils and herbs formulated to help skin look young and healthy. In Ayurveda, rare pure saffron is known to help illuminate skin color; extracts of Indian madder and the Banyan tree help smooth fine lines; Vetiver, sandalwood and lotus cool and cleanse while helping to clear blemishes; and liqorice acts as an antiseptic, protects the skin from bacterial and fungal infections and improve skin texture.

Ingredients on Package: Sesasum Indicum Oil, Caprae Lac, Caesalpinia Sappan, Crocus Sativus, Ficus Benghalensis, Glycyrrhiza Glabra, Monochoria Vaginalis, Nelumbo Nucifera, Rubia Cordifolia, Vetiveria Zizanoides, Laciferra Lacca

Ingredients in Plain English: Sesame oil (carrier oil), Goat Milk, Sappan Wood, Saffron Cocus, Indian Banyan Tree, Liquorice, Pickerel Weed, Indian Lotus (Sacred Lotus), Indian Madder, Vetiver, Resin secreted from female Lac Bug on trees

There is certain richness about this oil which can be attributed straight to its unique ingredient list. These ingredients are not seen everyday in a growing market of facial oils. However, if you’ve used Ayurveda oils before this lineup wouldn’t come as a surprise. The lush oil is packaged in a 12ml dark brown glass bottle with a pipette. Admittedly, slightly on the pricier side however in my opinion, it is worth it as a little goes a long way.

 

The aroma may not please everyone, but personally I’m in Love. It has a decent hit of botanical scent, with subtle woody notes wonderfully blended and balanced with the sweetness of saffron. The rich deep yellow shade would be attributed to the saffron as well. The texture is not heavy which allows it to blend seamlessly in the skin and ‘yellowness’ disappears completely. I use about 2-3 drops and push it in my skin and noticed the skin immediately absorbs it (scent lingers for few minutes). The following morning, my skin is noticeably plump, no visible redness, calm and brighter. It also claims to help with fine lines however I’m not a suitable candidate to assess that at this stage, but I still think it’s wonderful as a preventative measure.

Layered under my favourite serum Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair II, the results following morning are nothing short of WOW. On occasions, I wear my Mixologist hat, and mix this oil with Goodness Labs Chia Seed oil or The Body Shop Vitamin E Overnight Serum in Oil (proportion 2:2 drops). It feels like ‘Pampered Skin from a 12ml Bottle’. I have many facial oils, but this one is reserved as my Treat or Royalty Facial oil.

HHW.com

xx

2015 Flash Back

Needless to say, a LOT has happened this year in the Beauty world but I cannot possibly capture every single event here.

Hope the New Year brings us many more launches, and bring back some discontinued products (referring to The Body Shop Nutriganics range).

Hope you have safe, healthy and happy holidays.

2015 has been the year of Pipette!!!

Every magical potion came from a Pipette! Serums, Oils, Acids, Peels

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Blue Tansy – The ‘IT’ Ingredient of 2015

Some brands that have incorporated the Blue Tansy oil and brought it to the forefront of consumers, Sunday Riley, Herbivore Botanicals, Aster + Bay, May Lindstrom and Raaw in a Jar.

 

Caroline Hirons collaborated with Cult Beauty for Curated Beauty Boxes

CH for CB 1CH for CB 2

Launch – Lisa Eldridge’s labour of love – Face Paint

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Launch – H&M Beauty

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Launch – Sephora Beauty Boxes

sephora launch

Launch – Real Techniques Bold Metals Collection

RT Bold Metals Launch

Launch – Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette

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Discontinued – The Body Shop Nutriganics

 

My Skincare Database

skincare database

My Self Imposed Mission Empties

 

DIY Experiments

Face Masks, Bath Salts, Facial

 

HHW.com

xx