Friday, 27 December 2013

Skinetica - Review

First of all, I would like to wish you all a big but ever so slightly late Merry Christmas!! Did everyone enjoy the festivities? I hope that you were all spoilt rotten; I know all of my family were! Within the past week or so, there have been some very sad events that have occurred but we have tried to make the most of it. Christmas is always m favourite time of the year and everyone in my house is like a big kid! I love the surprise of opening presents and this year I got some wonderful ones. I welcomed quite a few new bottles of perfume into my ever growing collection. Yes, when it comes to perfume I may have a slight issue. Last year, I did a Christmas haul because people requested it and I was wondering whether or not people would like me to do another one this year? I look forward to reading everyone else's hauls; I love seeing what people got for Christmas!!

A few weeks ago, I was contacted by Skinetica asking me whether or not I would like to try a sample of their product. I was going through a bad patch with my skin so I jumped at the opportunity and the following weekend my samples arrived. They couldn't have come at a better time!

For those who aren't really sure what Skinetica is, it's a spot treatment that is described as being an anti-blemish treatment and a super toner. The product claims to soothe, calm and clear the skin. As well as being non greasy, containing no harsh chemicals, being kind to the skin, not staining the skin and being fast acting, it is also dermatologically tested. Sounds amazing right? 


Skinetica* is really easy to use and takes seconds to apply. It's best to put some of the product onto a cotton pad, apply it to skin that is clean and dry. Also make sure that you have thoroughly covered the affected area. It is also best to make sure that the area is wet and has been coated well with the product and is relatively wet, for best results. The liquid is clear, takes seconds to air dry and can be applied to anywhere on the body that may be prone to a breakout of spots - the face, back or chest in particular. 

In the past when I looked at reviews of this I noticed some people saying that they found Skinetica to be drying on their skin because it contains high levels of alcohol. Due to having sensitive skin that can become easily sore and uncomfortable, I was worried in case I experienced this. However, I am pleased to report that I have felt no side effects from using this product and it has actually helped my skin out. 

I have been using this spot/acne treatment for a few weeks now so I definitely feel as though I can provide you all with an honest review. Skinetica is affordable, can be used on a range of different areas and does not aggravate the skin. After application, I feel as though my skin feels soft and like the product has fully absorbed. My skin doesn't look red, it doesn't look like I have just applied a spot treatment and Skinetica can be used all over the face (apart from the eyes, obviously!). I was a little worried that because of the high alcohol content my skin would end up feeling like it had been stripped of its moisture but this definitely is not the case. 

As I have said, Skinetica does contain quite a lot of alcohol but this is only because there are no nasty chemicals contained within the ingredients. The product contains no harsh chemicals such as Benzoyl Peroxide or Salicylic Acid. Don't worry though, this product doesn't have an offensive smell and instead of smelling super flammable it smells light and fresh. I actually really like the smell. 

I like to apply this product morning and night and I really feel it working. Within 3 or 4 days my pesky break out was reduced and didn't look as angry. You can also use this product under your makeup - just let it properly air dry and it will act a primer! I have almost used up half of the big bottle and once I am all out, I will definitely be buying another bottle. The 80ml bottle that Richard kindly sent me costs £9.99* and when you take into consideration how affordable, effective and kind to the skin Skinetica is I think this is a must have product to battle any breakout; whether it be acne or hormonal!

Have you ever tried Skinetica before?

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

*c/o Skinetica
Product sent in consideration for review.

Monday, 23 December 2013

Origins Mask Marvels

If you're into your skincare or beauty, I'm pretty sure that you will have heard a lot about Origins. The brand is loved my beauty junkies all over the world and although I have only just started using their products I am hooked. I can definitely see why people love this brand and I am really enjoying trying out their face masks!

A few months ago I received a sample of Origins Clear Improvement mask which is a clay based charcoal mask that is used to clear the pores. As soon as I used this mask I noticed immediate results and I was hooked. I only received a small 7ml sample (seen in a recent empties post here and initial review here) which lasted me a few uses so as soon as I finished it I went to my nearest Origins counter to pick up a new one!

Instead of just picking up the Clear Improvement mask, I decided to go for a set of 3 face masks that I noticed on the Origins counter. The sales assistant told me that the gift set was their 'Mask Marvels' and that it contained the three best loved and most popular face masks that the brand offers!

The set is priced at £25 and contains the Clear Improvement mask, the Drink Up Intensive overnight mask and the Drink Up 10 minute mask. All three of the tubes are 75ml versions of the best loved masks which means the set works out at great value for money. This skincare trio would be perfect for yourself or maybe for someone you know who loves their skincare. The decoration of the box makes it a perfect Christmas present!

The three masks contained with the 'Mask Marvels' set are general masks that are used to either clear the skin and it's pores or to moisturise. The masks are suitable to be used on a variety of different skin types and I absolutely love them. I picked this set up from Selfridges at the beginning of October and the sales assistant informed me that despite only just getting the trio in store, it had already been very popular. I can definitely see why!

What do you think of the Mask Marvels set? Would you buy this
for someone or would you like to receive it yourself for Christmas?

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

The Body Shop Strawberry Body Butter - Review

My last two posts have all been reviews of some products from The Body Shop and this post is going to be my final one. I did intend to post all three of these features within the past week but unfortunately we're going through somewhat of a family tragedy and therefore blogging has been the last thing on my mind. If I'm slow with posting new features or, don't seem very active on Twitter or don't Instagram anything for a few days I apologise. I'm not taking a break from blogging or anything, it's just that what is happening is taking up a lot of time. I don't want to go into detail about it because that seems a little insensitive and unfair on other family members but this is a very hard time - emotionally and physically. I thought you all deserved to know that I'm not deserting my blog!

This body butter is definitely something that reminds me of my mum a few years ago. I remember when she was obsessed with The Body Shop butters and she had loads of different ones that she would put on after the bath. The worst one she had was the Satsuma one and the best one was definitely the strawberry! She no longer uses these anymore so I guess smelling this Strawberry body butter was pretty nostalgic.

I really like the packaging of this product and the fact that it is plastic is a huge bonus. Of course, I like the look of the big heavy glass body butters (I'm looking at you, Laura Mercier) and they look absolutely gorgeous but they seem so impractical for storing in the bathroom or taking on your travels. I'd be terrified of smashing it! This plastic tub with a screw on/off lid makes it super easy to use and you can take it anywhere with you without needing to worry about it smashing. I also like the fact that the tub is red and has a picture of a strawberry on top. Just incase you didn't already know what scent body butter you were using, this one makes it blatantly obvious. If you have a collection of body butter for The Body Shop, I'm sure that you will easily be able to spot this one! The fragrance of this also happens to be amazing! As soon as you take the screw lid off, you instantly smell this body butter and want to put some on. If you're a fan of the strawberry scent, you'll definitely love this one.

This moisturising butter is rather thick in consistency, claims to moisturise the skin for 24 hours and is great for normal to dry skin. The Body Shop 'Strawberry Body Butter'* is made using cold-pressed Strawberry seed oil and this is what gives it that wonderful smell. The butter soaks into the skin quickly leaving it feeling hydrated, soft and smelling delicious but not sticky. Although, I love the smell of this moisturiser, I don't like the smell of it when it's first applied and rubbed into the skin. I find that it smells very 'fake' and when I first used it I was a little gutted. However, don't panic because after 5 minutes or so, the original Strawberry smell returns and this lingers on the skin for a good few hours.

The body butter can be applied pretty much everywhere on the body (although I wouldn't really advise putting it on the face and obviously this isn't for use in 'personal' areas) and it's great to use after a bath or shower so not only does your skin soak up the moisturising goodness that it needs but you also smell super fruity and fabulous. If you have a Christmas party to go to and you want to smell amazing but look sparkly at the same time, this or one of the other The Body Shop body butters would be the perfect thing to use. Applying a thin layer of this and then spritzing 'The Sparkler' (HERE)  which is also from The Body Shop on top would make your Christmas sparkle last a little longer.  

This tub costs £13 for 200ml of product. I think that this really reasonable because you only need a small amount of product as it does a long way and you can really work it into the skin. The Body Shop are known for good quality, kind to the planet products and I think this would make a lovely Christmas gift for someone who likes to pamper themselves or even for yourself to use after a nice relaxing bath. I love this stuff and I am pleased to say that this hasn't affected or aggravated my sensitive eczema prone skin. Although I don't recommend applying it directly to any patches or eczema, problematic or broken skin (because it's fragranced) this body butter can still be used elsewhere!

Have you ever used The Body Shop Body Butters -
Which one is your favourite?

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

*C/O Talented Talkers
Product sent in consideration for review.

Thursday, 12 December 2013

The Body Shop Shimmer Cubes - Review

When I first saw this palette, I'm not going to lie, I felt a little intimidated. When it comes to eyeshadow, I'm a neutral girl, through and through. Whoever says you can never have too many neutral eyeshadows was spot on, you can't. I remember looking at this panicking that I had never worn these shades before and wondering whether or not they would compliment and suit my blue eyes. Slight over reaction? Completely! After swatching The Body Shop 'Shimmer Cube Palette' in number 23*, I was in love and couldn't wait to start playing around with the shades. They're perfect - a white, a pink, a deep purple and a deep plum. If you need one eyeshadow quad this party season, I guarantee you it will be this one. The colours are perfect for winter, create a glamour smokey eye and aren't too heavy so that they leave you looking like a drag queen - perfect!

I absolutely love these shades and although they aren't typically 'me' I'm very glad that I received them! My favourite shades definitely have to be the Deep Purple and the Plum tone. The Plum one actually reminds me of the MAC eyeshadow in 'Sketch' and this is a shade I have been wanting to try for a long time but have always worried it wouldn't suit me. The shadow contained in this quad, however, is slightly more metallic and darker. I absolutely love wearing the two dark shades and I love wearing them by putting a light wash of the white shadow all over the lid and applying one of them into the outer corner and blending like there's no tomorrow. This ensures that there isn't as much of a stark contract between the light/dark colours and eliminates any harsh lines so the shadows blend seamlessly into one another.

All four of the eyeshadows in the this quad feel buttery soft, apply well and blend effortlessly. The fact that this shadow is a quad of four colours means that you don't have worry about whether or not they will compliment each other when worn together. The Body Shop have done the hard work for you which means that this quad is perfect for someone who is new to eyeshadows, wants to start experimenting with some colour or just want a go to palette.

Shades: (top - bottom)
01 Orchid Purple
02 Candy Pink
03 Pearly White
04 Velvet Plum

As you can see from the picture above, each eyeshadow comes in it's own little plastic cube which means that if you only want to use one of the shades you can pop it in your makeup bag and you don't have to worry about it getting smashed. The clear packaging is also handy because you can easily see the colours that are inside so if you can quickly grab the shade you want to use instead of faffing around. Another thing that someone may lie about this packaging is that you can completely remove an eyeshadow from its little cube if you want to. I don't quite know why someone would want to do this because it makes the shadow extremely susceptible to smashing but I guess everyone has their own individual preferences... (as shown below). 

Even though they're meant to, the other two shades wouldn't come out.
I didn't want to force them and end up crumbling them!

I think that this quad is perfect for winter and the festive season and for £16* I think that it's great value for money. The shadows are good quality, pigmented and will last a long time; they feel high end without being too expensive. I was actually in The Body Shop this Monday taking full advantage of their 50% off offer and had to refrain myself from picking up some more shimmer cubes! Due to it being so close to Christmas, I'm trying to be good at the moment when it comes to shopping but in the New Year I'd definitely like to add some more Shimmer Cubes to my makeup collection. In typical Elysia style, I have my eye on the neutral one, of course!

I think this palette would create the perfect smokey eye for a glamorous Christmas
Party, what do you think?

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

*c/o Talented Talkers
Product provided in consideration for review.

Monday, 9 December 2013

The Body Shop 'The Sparkler' - Review

I'm a fan of The Body Shop and whenever they have a new discount code or promotion taking place I either find myself having a mooch online or in store. Speaking of discount, they currently have 50% off online and in store TODAY ONLY (9/12/2013)!! One thing that I came across a long time ago was 'The Sparkler' and ever since it has caught my attention. It reminds me of an old perfume bottle, with the sleek class packaging and the fabric atomiser. I love the packaging, it has a real old school glamour feel about it and would look great sat on a dressing table.

The 'Sparkler'* does look a little daunting to be honest and I have always wondered how no earth you'd use it without showering yourself and your surroundings. However, it really isn't that difficult. The Sparkler* is described as being an all over shimmer and this shade is '02 Enchanting Gold'.

The product is designed to disperse a fine yellow toned, fragranced glitter over the body to enhance and dazzle. You can use the super soft finely milled dust on the body (shoulders, collarbones, legs), face or hair and I guess if you're wanting to look super shimmery you could even spritz some on your clothes - we are in the Christmas party season, after all!

This product is best used when you hold it between 5-10 cm away from you, hold it above the spot where you want the shimmer to go, hold it at a slight angle and press the atomiser gently so it disperses the product as you need it. If you press it too hard, it will all fire out and land in one spot. With this product, slow and steady is key.

If you're a fan of glitter and would like some added pizazz to your skin, then this is likely to be the product for you. The powder is fine, the fragrance isn't so strong that it interferes with everyday perfume and the dispersed glitter lasts on the skin for a few hours. If you're wanting it to last a little longer, you could always moisturise and then spritz this all over you as your drying off. Although I like this product, I do think it's limited in when you would actually use it. This doesn't strike me as something that you can use everyday and instead I think it's probably best suited for celebrations (birthdays, weddings, christenings), nights out and Christmas parties. Now that we're in the festive season, I think this would also be great for performers to use to give them some extra sparkle whilst on stage. I have a performance background and for our Christmas dance shows we would always use the aerosol glitter sprays and it would fill the dressing rooms with that awful heavy smell! It would be choking and the corridors would stink of the spray. If only we had something such as The Sprinkler, it would have been so much easier and much better for my poor asthmatic lungs! 

At £15* this is quite an expensive product but if you're a serious shimmer lover and have space in your collection for something like this; I think you will love it! After all, this is one of the Body Shops best selling products.

Have you ever tried 'The Sparkler'? Are you
a fan of shimmer?

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW

*c/o Talented Talkers
Provided in consideration for review.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

My Winter Must Have Accessory - Zara Tartan

Winter has 100% arrived and it's now the time to start wrapping up warm and protecting yourself from the bitter temperatures outside. Unless you have been living under a rock, you will most probably know that Tartan is proving itself to be a huge trend this winter and it seems to be absolutely everywhere!

I know that this season Primark are offering some really nice Tartan scarves and as always they're amazingly priced. However, they're proving themselves to be near impossible to get hold of and although they look nice and warm they're nowhere near as snug as the Tartan offering I am showcasing to you all today....

This season Zara have spoilt us with their Tartan offerings and I think that I may have just found the perfect winter warmer!

What drew me to this scarf was not only the sheer size of it but the fact that it is subtle. Tartan can be a bit hit and miss - people either love it or they hate it. I have never really been into tartan much so I wanted to choose something that was a little more subtle and that I would be able to wear all the time. The use of navy and green make this scarf easy to accessorise, the fabric is super soft, it is incredibly warm and the scarf itself is absolutely gigantic!! The dimensions of it are 140cm x 140cm so it is definitely comparable to a blanket!

For the size and the overall quality of this scarf, you may be expecting it to be rather expensive but don't panic it's only £19.99! If you like to wrap up super warm at this time of year, I think this scarf will be perfect for you. Also, if you have a lot of travelling to do this festive season and you always feel the cold on a plane/train this is the perfect travel accessory! I absolutely love this scarf and I have worn it practically everyday since buying it a few weeks ago. When I went to get this, I had to go to a few different Zara's, in order to find it. This scarf is definitely very popular this season and even when I Instagram'ed a picture of it, there was a lot of interest in it.

Have you bought yourself  anything Tartan this season -
what's your favourite accessory?

Twitter: @PurpleElll
Instagram: Elysia_JW