BeautyBloggers

Darphin 8-Flower Nectar Elixir

Rejuvenating elixir, in the pure tradition of aromatherapy, blends rare and radiance boosting aromatic essences from 8 precious flowers. Opulent formula with anti-oxidants, nourishes and helps smooth the look of lines and wrinkles, firm skin and renew skin suppleness, resilience and youthful radiance, key evidence of truly, younger-looking skin. With an exquisitely feminine, sensual fragrance that could double as a perfume, it is the quintessential holistic beauty care that creates a feeling of overall beauty and well-being while rejuvenating skin’s appearance.

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Ingredients: Jojoba Seed Oil, Sunflower Seed Oil, Oleic/Linoleic/Linolenic Polyglycerides, Avocado Oil, Apricot Kernel Oil, Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Hexyldecanol, Cananga Odorata Flower Oil, Jasmine Flower Extract, Iris Pallida Root Extract, Vanilla Planifolia Fruit Extract, Phytosterols, Date Seed Extract, Cranberry Seed Oil, Olive Fruit Oil, Patchouli Oil, Helichrysum Angustifolium Flower Oil, Lavender Oil, Orange Flower Oil, Beta-Carotene, Rose Flower Oil, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, Rosewood Oil, Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate, Tocopherol, Sorbitan Oleate, Benzyl Acetate, Benzyl Salicylate, Limonene, Benzyl Benzoate, Farnesol, Linalool, Geraniol, Citronellol
What are the 8 Flowers you ask?
Ylang Ylang, Jasmine, Iris, Patchouli, Immortelle, Orange Flower, Rose, Lavender
  • Carrier Oils: Jojoba, Sunflower, Avocado, Apricot Kernel, Macadamia, Vegetable Oil
  • Other Essential Oils: Vanilla, Date Seed, Cranberry Seed, Olive fruit, Rosewood
Packaged in a tiny 15ml glass bottle with twist open top. The bottle opening is very narrow, for a darn good reason.
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Use: I place my finger, on the opening of the bottle and tip the product on my finger. Repeat this process with 4 fingers and then proceed to face. Needless to mention, I take a deep breath cupping my palms. There is nothing more relaxing than that.
Texture & Consistency: Gorgeous oil appears dense but absorbs instantly in the skin. It Smells like no other oil I’ve ever tried. Beautiful intoxicating floral that transcends you in a gorgeous garden in Grasse France.
If you don’t like essentials oils, or have an issue with heavily scented products, this is NOT for you. If you hate strong scents in your products, don’t consider any facial oil from Darphin. An absolute treat for my skin, and skin appears calm and plump next morning.
At $10 per ml, it is exorbitantly expensive, and wise to wait for some sale or discounts unless of course you just have an itch to splurge away, go for it. Reserved as complete treat for the skin.
 *Product gifted by brand.

HHW.com

xx

May Lindstrom The Blue Cocoon

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The Beauty Balm Concentrate – Tranquil, Intoxicating and Deep Calm

May Lindstrom says, Our balmy blue enchantress greets your skin with cool serenity, melting on touch to a fluid potion that tenderly envelops you in the most decadent azure calm. Mystical blue tansy eases feelings of emotional anxiety while releasing heat and providing nourishment and relief to delicate, inflamed and irritable skin conditions.

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Ingredients: Camellia Oleifera (Camellia) Seed Oil, *** Butyrospermun Parkii (Shea) Butter, *** Theobroma Cacao Seed Butter, *** Sclerocarya Birrea (Virgin Marula) Oil, Calodendrum Capense (Yangu) Oil, * Adansonia Digitata (Baobab) Oil, * Tanacetum Annuum (Blue Tansy) Oil, **Commiphora Myrrha (Myrrh) Oil, * Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, ** Boswellia Carteri (Frankincense) Oil, * Pelargonium Graveolens (Geranium Rose) Oil, * Vanilla Planifolia CO2 Total Essential Oil, Schisandra Sphenanthera CO2 Fruit Extract, * Helichrysum Italicum (Immortelle) Oil, Ravensara Aromatica Oil

* Certified Organic **Wild Harvested  ***Fair Trade, Raw & Unrefined

When I was first intrigued by this product and glanced through the ingredient listing, I saw Shea & Cacao Butter and instantly ruled it out. Then I met May at two separate events and she assured me it wont wreak havoc on my skin. I took a leap of faith, and I’m glad I did!

There is no simple way to explain why Shea & Cacao Butter in this formualtion isnt causing my skin to congest, so I reach out to the Beauty & Brain of this brand, yes May herself. May explains,

The Blue Cocoon’s adaptability to all skin types – including those prone to acne and congestion – has much to do with proper respect to ratios in the blend of beautiful ingredients.  The cult status of Blue Cocoon being skin saviour can be attributed largely to using both of these ingredients in their entirely raw, unbleached and non-deodorized state – rare, even in the natural beauty world. By using ingredients in their raw, unbleached form it ensures the integrity of properties of each ingredient making this balm a potent and effective option on the market without compromising the intended purpose of each ingredient.

Most often, Shea butter is refined, bleached and deodorized. It’s nearly white and practically odorless and incredibly easy to work with. However at May Lindstrom, utmost and gentle care taken is taken in the process of creating each micro batch.

The Blue Cocoon is housed in a heavy black opaque glass pot which can be reused upon completion of product.

In the pot, the aroma exudes the richness of cocoa layered with an edge of distinct sharpness of exotic lands (Myrrh and Frankincense). On my skin upon application, the Lavender and Vanilla note come off stronger in a very good way.

 

 

The texture and consistency is that of a luxurious balm thats melts on contact with skin (due to body heat). Well here, I’ve held the balm on my finger for few seconds and you can see how balm is melting due to my body heat. Plus also give credit to the heater which was on High!

In general, it can be used absolutely any time, however I like to finish my nightly skincare routines with this. Alternatively in the morning, after toner stage and while the skin is still slightly moist I push this balm into the skin (another tip from May). My skin immediately absorbs it with no residue or layer of oil on top of skin.

The Results: Well my skin is left wonderfully hydrated, plump and helps with skin’s resilience. I use this in particular when my skin may have a monthly eruption as it works wonderfully as an anti inflammatory. Calms down angry unsettled skin. On some ruthless winter nights, where the heating takes a toll on my skin I apply double layer of this balm. It almost protects it from any harshness in the environment.

Now, it is no secret, it is prohibitively expensive, and many have complained about why it’s so expensive?! But here’s one lens to this, consider dissecting the ingredients list. The Blue Cocoon has some lush ingredients like Blue Tansy, Frankincense, Myrrh, Immortelle… some of these are by no means cheap ingredients. Now in saying so, these would be bought wholesale, so the cost of these per pot is not as much. Followed by the cost of concocting the product itself, covering any incidentals/ operational overheads, packaging costs, building in shipping costs, and adding a rather generous mark-up for profit.… the final price adds up to $180 (recent price hike from $160). Beyond ridiculous and not justifiable in a market where creative artisans are coming with new formulations which are not only competitively priced but also capable of out performing.

1.69 oz. / 50ml – $180

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xx

Pixi Glow Mud Cleanser

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Before I go into talking about this cleanser, I need to thank Sal @ummbaby for spoiling me with this even before Pixi released this gorg cleanser in USA.

Pixi Beauty Claims: This active yet gentle cleanser with 5% glycolic acid exfoliates to reveal a glowing, healthier-looking skintone. Mud deep cleans & detoxifies pores while hyaluronic acid, aloe vera, and avocado oil plump & nourish the skin. Leaves complexion feeling smooth & purified.

Packaged in an opaque mint green plastic tube. I’ve used the cleanser now for 3-4 weeks, and realized the font on the tube has started to fade. Who cares about font, moving onto the real jizz locked in that tube.

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Nothing jumps negatively at me from the ingredient list. Pixi claims its jam packed with Glycolic acid at 5% which is listed as the seventh ingredient. Other notables includes Aloe Vera Leaf Juice, Clay aka Diatomaceous Earth (obvs), Hyaluronic Acid, Squalene and some lovely oil and extract additions (Chamomile, Avocado, Wheatgerm, Hazelnut, Sesame). As for when to use? I’d say as second cleanse or morning cleanse. Please for the love of cleansers, do not remove makeup with this.

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Scent wise, some hate some love the aroma of this cleanser. Me…? I love! There is something the scent of clays and muds which make me feel……..connected to the earth. OK I’ll stop on my hippiness.

The texture & consistency is creamy, soft, spreadable, and upon adding some water nicely emulsified. The packaging says apply to damp skin, however I go with slightly damp skin when used as a second cleanse. In the morning, I go for it on dry skin.

The skin feels clean, purified and adds a very subtle glow. If you leave it on as a mask and then wash, its bloody fabulous (my preferred method). It doesn’t even leave the skin dry or tight. However during the winter I add couple of drops of Goodness Labs Chia Seed Oil. Come summer, I know I will blitz through this cleanser.

Generous quantity packed (135 ml/4.57 fl.oz) and available on Pixi Beauty site and now available in Target for $18. Although its incredibly unfair that UK has to pay £18 as well. Ermmmmmmm Seriously?! They should be tops paying £15 with currency conversion and buffer for currency fluctuations. Common Pixi!!!!

Having Said That: It’s still Friggin Excellent Value for Money!!!

HHW.com

xx

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