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Wednesday, 24 July 2019

LA ROCHE-POSAY AT THE ALLERGY AND FREE FROM SHOW

In my last post, I wrote about the recent Allergy and Free From Show at the Olympia London.

La Roche-Posay are known for their gentle skincare products, specially formulated for sensitive skin and allergies. The brand played a prominent part at the show and their stand attracted many visitors.

La Roche-Posay at the Free From Show

At last year's show, I went to an excellent talk about sensitive skin and allergies, by  Dr Justine Hextall, a consultant dermatologist.  The event was sponsored by La Roche-Posay.  I heard that they were sponsoring her talk again this year, and that she had some interesting updates, so I was very keen to go to the Learning Centre to listen.


Dr Justine Hextall - Taking Questions from the Audience

Dr Hextall began by saying that sensitive, irritated skin and actual allergies were often confused. Irritation could be avoided by using products free from preservatives and perfumes and keeping to a simple and gentle skincare routine.  A gentle cleanser, followed by the right moisturizer (look for one with ingredients like shea butter and glycerin) to suit you, could make all the difference.  She also mentioned a new La Roche-Posay product - Toleriane Ultra 8. This is a fine mist spray that hydrates, soothes and protects and can be applied at any time, even over makeup.

Dr Hextall then told us something very interesting about eczema.  Although a child of two parents with eczema has a higher risk of developing it, if their skin is looked after when they are very young, this can be prevented and controlled.

She explained about skin barriers.  They are  less tolerant as we age and it is important to hydrate and protect our skin barriers when very young and older as poor barriers result in irritations.

Finally, Dr Hextall dealt with summer related allergies and irritation.  She gave some good tips on dealing with pollen and hayfever and also spoke about sunscreens that could cause irritation. Whilst it is essential to protect skin from the sun, she advised us to look for products that were free from preservatives and perfumes. She recommended La Roche-Posay's Anthelios sunscreens.

So the golden rules are soothe, hydrate and protect!  La Roche-Posay had given me a couple of small sample tubes of Toleriane Ultra Fluide (a light moisturizer for normal or combination skin) and a little sample bottle of Toleriane Dermo-Cleanser (a wipe-off cleansing milk), just enough to try for a few days.


LA ROCHE-POSAY Products
I applied the Toleriane Dermo-Cleanser with my fingertips and wiped it off carefully.  It removed my makeup and cleansed my skin gently, leaving it feeling soft, hydrated and comfortable.  The ingredients include glycerine and La Roche-Posay Thermal Water. 

I then applied the Toleriane Ultra Fluide and this again left my skin with the same soft, hydrated feeling.  Here the ingredients include shea butter as well as glycerin and La Roche-Posay Thermal Water. 

My overall impression of these two products is that they are both very gentle, perfume free, with a clean feeling.  Although they are both hydrating, they are not oily or greasy.  I would certainly call them soothing and hydrating.

I was also given a leaflet about Toleriane Ultra 8, the new spray mist mentioned by Dr Hextall.  I haven't had an opportunity to try this new product yet but I shall be looking in Boots to see if they have a tester for it. It sounds very interesting because it is formulated to soothe and repair the skin barrier.   


The products mentioned above were NOT GIFTED.  These very small, not-for-sale, samples were offered to all members of the public to try. 
















Saturday, 13 July 2019

MY VISIT TO THE ALLERGY & FREE FROM SHOW 2019

Last Saturday, I went to the ALLERGY and FREE FROM SHOW at the London Olympia.  I always look forward now to this annual event, where brands display their products (food, drink, skincare, makeup etc). They offer products that are free from ingredients that can affect people who suffer from allergies or intolerances or have sensitive skin.  It's an ideal show for those who need food and drink that is gluten and/or lactose free or have skin prone to eczema.

The Allergy and Free From Show at Olympia London

In the morning, I enjoyed the Blogger's Meet-up. This was an opportunity to meet other bloggers and some of the exhibitors, who offered tasters and samples of their products.  I am not a food blogger and I really came to the show to learn about beauty products, so I didn't accept many of the food gifts that were being offered to us. 

However, I couldn't resist a Schär Gluten Free Seeded Loaf and a pack of Sproud Barista, a plant-based milk alternative.  
Whilst I am under no obligation to feature these 2 products in my blog, they were gifted to me as a blogger, so I am referring to my review of them below as :

GIFTED: Sponsored feature

The Schär Gluten Free Seeded Loaf is a lovely little sliced loaf containing flax seeds, sunflower seeds and millet seeds.  It is gluten and wheat free and made specially for people intolerant to gluten. Also, it is lactose free and suitable for Vegans. I would add that it is a source of high fibre and low in saturated fat (0.2g) and salt (0.29g) - that's per slice.


Schär Gluten Free Seeded Loaf 

Schär Gluten Free Seeded Loaf 

I enjoyed eating this wholesome bread as it was, but I also found that it was delicious toasted with my low fat olive spread and honey on it. 

SPROUD BARISTA M*LK comes from Sweden and is made of protein from dry yellow peas. It's milk free, gluten free, soy free, Vegan. It contains calcium and vitamins, and saturated fat per 100 ml = 0.3g, salt per 100 ml= O.2g.


Sproud Barista


Sproud suggest serving the "m*lk" warm and frothy with coffee - Cappuccino!  That was lovely but I also enjoyed it just added cold to instant coffee. I liked drinking it on it's own too and it was even good with my organic Swiss style muesli for breakfast.  With its creamy texture, it really is a good alternative to milk.  

Although I am not gluten or lactose intolerant, sometimes I find it's good for my stomach and digestion to have a break from those ingredients.  I would certainly buy these two excellent products and suggest them to people who are gluten and lactose intolerant.

The only beauty brand represented at the meet-up was La Roche-Posay, who offer very good skincare products. I was given some tiny sample tubes (offered to all visitors) and my attention was drawn to a new product.  I will be writing in detail about La Roche-Posay's skincare products in my next post.

After the meet-up, I enjoyed looking around the show and tasting some of the food displayed on the stands.

Then it was time to go to the Learning Centre to listen to Dr Justine Hextall's talk on sensitive skin and allergies, sponsored by La Roche-Posay. I was looking forward to this as I was so impressed by her talk last year.  This time, Dr Hextall added some very interesting updates to her advice.  I will write about her talk in my next post about La Roche-Posay.


Now it's time for a coffee break - a nice cup of Decaff coffee with Sproud!

The Schär loaf and Sproud Barista were GIFTED.


Friday, 5 July 2019

CLINIQUE ALL ABOUT EYES Rich - What To Do About Dark Shadows Under the Eyes

In my last post, I wrote about my favourite foundation and mentioned that it helped to cover the dark shadows under my eyes.  Here's the link if you would like to read it: 


I have always had a slight problem with these under eye shadows, especially if I went short on sleep, but sadly these things have a way of getting worse as we get older.  I have been using CLINIQUE ALL ABOUT EYES (Rich) for some time now and have found that it helps to alleviate the problem.  Recently, I used up my little pot and didn't replace it for a few weeks, just applying moisturizer to the area. I  soon noticed the deterioration both with the shadows and in the condition of the skin around my eyes! So of course I went out to Boots and bought it again!


CLINIQUE All About Eyes Rich
CLINIQUE ALL ABOUT EYES (Rich) is a moisture-rich eye cream formulated to reduce the appearance of dark shadows, lines and puffiness around the eyes. It is 100%  fragrance free, something I always look for with eye skincare products. I apply the cream am and pm, as recommended by CLINIQUE, with a "gentle patting motion".

I find that as soon as I start to use it, there is an immediate improvement, but it really makes a difference when applied regularly and consistently.  I would emphasize that it does need to be used regularly and consistently.

In the past, using this cream and covering the under-eye area with the right foundation was sometimes enough. Now, concealer has become very important too!  I'm always looking at different concealers and they seem to be improving in quality and selection.  Currently, I am using an inexpensive one - Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer - which I think is very good and excellent value at £4.19.  It goes on smoothly, covers well without being noticeable or forming a cakey texture, it doesn't settle in lines and it does last well. It's good for covering other blemishes on the face too. 

 I'm always interested to hear about concealers and hints on dealing with dark under-eye shadows, so I'd love to read your comments in the Comments box below.

None of the products mentioned above were Gifted.

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

CHANEL VITALUMIÈRE Satin Smoothing Fluid Makeup

I always find it exciting to buy new makeup for eyes, lips and nails at the beginning of a season, especially from my favourite designer brands, where colours and textures reflect the mood of their new fashion themes.  When it comes to basics like skincare products or foundation, once I find the right one, I tend to use it for years, until the product is discontinued or my skin develops different needs.  Of course, as a beauty blogger, I am always interested to look at new products and try them out.

For some years now, my foundation has been CHANEL VITALUMIÈRE Satin Smoothing Fluid Makeup in Clair (20).

CHANEL VITALUMIÈRE in Clair (20)

VITALUMIÈRE comes in a pump container and is very easy to apply. CHANEL recommend just dabbing it on the face and blending it in with the fingertips.  It really does go on easily and smoothly.  

Although it is very moisturising, it doesn't create oiliness.  It contains special ingredients like extracts of walnut and liquorice, which seem to lift tired looking skin and give a youthful appearance.  The effect is smooth, luminous and with a healthy glow.

VITALUMIÈRE has a light texture but it gives a medium coverage.  I find that applied under my eyes, it covers, lightens and reduces the appearance of my dark shadows. Also, to some extent, it definitely softens and fills out my lines.  Added to all this, it contains an SPF 15 sun filter.  To me, VITALUMIÈRE is a makeup, treatment and protection all in one!

There's a good range of shades from pale to dark (10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80). I wear 20 Clair, a light cream beige that's not too pale and not too beige.

I would suggest that VITALUMIÈRE is a very good fluid foundation for normal to dry skin and especially beneficial to mature skin that needs a little extra help!

The product mentioned in this post was NOT GIFTED.






Wednesday, 22 May 2019

A PINK -TRIMMED TRANSPARENT BAG

The term "arm candy" originally described a very attractive partner or escort, who gave status and glamour to the image of the person with them.  Now, in fashion talk, it's often used in the context of designer bags.  Well yes, I think that a beautiful designer bag can certainly add chic and class to the wearer, even if they are dressed very casually or simply.

Designer bags never came cheap but they used to be quite classic.  Now, with the super brands bringing out new styles each season, the latest model has become the "must-have"!

Whilst I would love to go to Saint Laurent, CHANEL or Celine and treat myself to a lovely bag, at the moment, the High Street has to be my shopping destination! Actually, there are some very attractive bags now in the "fast fashion" shops, often saucily taking inspiration from designer trends. 

For Spring, I have been adding pale pink and transparent touches (makeup and accessories) to my mainly monochrome wardrobe, so this pink-trimmed transparent bag from Primark was exactly what I wanted. 



It contains a small white purse bag inside for those items I don't want to show and has a chain strap.


It catches the light very prettily when worn.


I also have my nude pink nail varnish,


Now I'm looking at transparent highlighters that add a luminous and translucent glow to the complexion.

NONE OF THE ITEMS MENTIONED IN THIS POST WERE GIFTED.


Wednesday, 1 May 2019

NUDE PINK NAILS - CHANEL LE VERNIS IN ORGANDI (504)

It's the 1st May today! I've been painting my nails red in one of my favourite colours - CHANEL LE VERNIS in Rouge Red (546) - for some months now and I think it's time to change to a different shade for Spring. 

I always find CHANEL LE VERNIS Longwear Nail Colour to be a really good nail varnish. Application is easy as it goes on evenly and smoothly and two coats dry to a perfect, shiny finish. The colours are always so chic and so beautiful!  This time I wanted a pale pink, so I went along to the CHANEL beauty counter to try out 3 shades:-

Ballerina (167), a very pale baby pink with a sheer coverage

Nuvola Rosa (588), a very pretty pink, still pale but with more coverage

Organdi (504), a nude pink, also with more coverage

I was torn between Nuvola Rosa and Organdi but in the end I chose Organdi, (in the photographs below.)








I am very pleased with my new Spring nails!



NONE OF THE ITEMS MENTIONED IN THIS POST WERE GIFTED.

Thursday, 18 April 2019

WEARING DIAMANTÉ WITH A SWEATSHIRT!

My favourite magazine is VOGUE PARIS and it really does influence my style.  I especially look forward to the February and August editions, which always set the mood for the new season ahead. 

The February 2019 issue focused on a theme of gender-fluidity and included a jewellery feature, in which beautiful diamond pieces were shown worn with casual, androgynous clothes - a contrast of masculinity and femininity, elegance and athleisure.  

Elegant pearl and diamond drop earrings with a black bodysuit, diamond brooches on a tailored jacket, a diamond necklace and earcuffs with a black sweatshirt, a gold and diamond signet ring and little diamond earrings with a black t-shirt or black jumper - little unexpected twist is always so chic. As I wear those clothes most of the time, I was keen to give it a try.

So I went to look in my jewellery drawer!  I bought this matching diamanté and pearl necklace and earrings by the costume jewellery firm, Monet,  to wear at a very special family occasion a long, long time ago.



I bought these diamanté ear jackets from Accessorize about two years ago.  The "ear cuff" is attached to a metal piece that sits behind the ear lobe.  





"Lady-like" hairbands are trendy this season, especially at Prada and Miu Miu.  Whilst looking in the drawer, I discovered a pearl hairband with a diamanté bow, which I bought seven years ago at Accessorize.



It's amazing what I've been finding in my wardrobe and chest of drawers lately!



NONE OF THE ABOVE ITEMS WERE GIFTED.

The holiday long weekend is almost here.  HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO EVERYONE!

Wednesday, 3 April 2019

NEW UPDATES TO MY SPRING WARDROBE

You may have read my recent post, "KEY PIECES IN MY WARDROBE - SPRING 2019", where I wrote about "shopping my wardrobe" rather than spending a lot of money on new clothes for Spring.  Here's an easy link to it if you would like to read it:


I must admit that I have now bought a few, carefully chosen, inexpensive pieces just to update my wardrobe.

Inspired by a black, long-sleeved bodysuit with a draped waist in the SAINT LAURENT Spring/Summer 2019 collection, I bought this black crepe blouse from the H&M Divided range.  With long sleeves, a narrow, deep V cut out at the front and draped detail at the waist, I thought it echoed the mood.



The original price was £12.99 but as it was an H&M Club*14% off day, I actually paid £11.17.

Then I saw these "slinky diamante earrings" at Accessorize, which will be perfect worn with the blouse.



Originally priced at £7, I bought them on a 20% off day for £5.60.

Cycling shorts, trendy in the nineties, are back in fashion this season.  They even appeared in the CHANEL Spring/Summer 2019 Collection, worn with CHANEL jackets.  That's good news for those of us who want to wear shorts, but not short shorts!  I bought these black cycling shorts at Primark.  Made in a polyester and elastane material, they have a silky finish.  They come to just above the knee on me, which is perfect because I don't want to display my thighs! Price - £5.



Hairbands have become very fashionable again, including folded scarves tied around the head.  This wrapped and folded scarf/hairband from H&M was designed to be worn either as a hairband or tied around the neck.  Unfolded, it's actually a 53cm x 53cm square scarf, made in a polyester silky material.  The equestrian pattern and the colours (black, gold, pink, brown on a white background) give a look reminiscent to a vintage Hermés scarf! Price - £6.99.



*Joining H&M Club means points on all purchases, offers and discounts and other benefits.

NONE OF THE ITEMS FEATURED IN THIS POST WERE GIFTED.


Wednesday, 13 March 2019

MY NEW BaByliss HAIRDRYER

For most of us, a hairdryer is an essential tool. 

Recently, my old hairdryer had been showing some signs that it might be on the blink.  I shampooed my hair and I was just beginning my blowdry, when my hairdryer packed up completely.  Luckily, I had a small travel hairdryer in the drawer - not a particularly good one, but a hairdryer at least - and I used that to continue.  I had almost completed my blowdry when - guess what? - that packed up too! Well, it was very old.

It was time to go out and buy a new hairdryer.  As I had been really pleased with my BaByliss straightener, I decided to try a BaByliss hairdryer.  I had lots of points on my Boots Advantage Card to redeem, so I went to Boots the Chemists to look at their selection of hairdryers.  I chose the BaByliss Travel Dry 2000 Hairdryer, intending to use it all the time, for both home and travel.  


BaByliss Travel Dry 2000 Hairdryer

For a travel hairdryer, this is quite powerful - 2000 w.  Compact and lightweight, it has a folding handle and a dual voltage converter (225v or 240v).  There are 2 heat/speed settings  and it comes with a concentrator nozzle for styling. Guarantee: 3 years.


BaByllis Travel Dry 2000 Hairdryer Folded

You might wonder why I have bought a travel dryer for general use.  As my hair is medium long and not that thick, it dries quickly.  Certainly a 2000w hairdryer is powerful and fast-drying enough for me.  Also, as I am a very small person, I do prefer to use lightweight, compact tools if possible.  When I dried my hair as usual, layer by layer for a smooth effect, I was delighted with my BaByliss Travel Dry 2000 Hairdryer.  It ticked all the boxes for me!

Whilst I realize that some people, especially those with long and/or thick hair, would want a more powerful hairdryer for normal use, I would certainly recommend this one as an excellent travel hairdryer.

Wednesday, 27 February 2019

KEY PIECES FROM MY WARDROBE - SPRING 2019

Put it down to austerity, the rising cost of bills and the uncertainty of Brexit, but many of us have been spending less on new clothes recently.  Phrases like "shopping my wardrobe" keep cropping up. 

When "fast fashion" arrived, we could buy trendy clothes and accessories at very low prices.  Maybe they were not so good at the start but they improved in both quality and design until they really became "cheap chic".  Clothes were so inexpensive that it was tempting to buy lots of pieces each season.  Our wardrobes expanded!

I began 2019 by going through my wardrobe and taking out items fit for the recycling bag.  A collection of beautiful pieces remained. They were still in wearable condition and they hadn't outlived their fashion life either.  I resolved to look in my wardrobe first before buying anything new for Spring.  

I looked at my favourite designers' Spring/Summer 2019 collections.  The "gender-fluid" trend was in evidence at SAINT LAURENT (Helmut Newton inspired masculine-feminine tailored pieces) and CELINE (smoking jackets).  From my wardrobe:-
  • A black tailored jacket
  • A black tuxedo 

I bought both jackets in the above photos some years ago at H&M.  I will wear them with my black jeans, sometimes with pointed-toe kitten heel pumps, sometimes with sneakers.  

The "Paris La Nuit" inspired collection at CELINE also featured pretty, frilled little dresses and tops.  In this mood, from my wardrobe:-
  • a black polka dot blouse in a sheer material:

  • a black silky, frilled camisole top:

Both these pieces were also bought some years ago at H&M.   I could wear them with a little black skirt (I've two of them in my wardrobe!) or just with my favourite jeans (black or dark blue denim).

Well I've made a start and I will certainly look in my wardrobe first before buying anything new this Spring/Summer!