I’ve been duped… AND I’M LOVING IT

The budget buy every ‘Porchester Square’ lover needs to try

I’ve always painted my nails, I love the way a few brush strokes can liven up an outfit or change your mood (for the better hopefully) my medications and vitamin deficiencies have pretty much battered my skin, hair and nails over the years and so I decided some 7 years ago now that I would make myself feel better, especially when looking down at my hands, by having acrylic overlays.

‘Pretty Woman’, the salon I always go to, uses no drills or bizarre machinery methods they simply take their time and give extra TLC by a manual application.  When I do soak my acrylic off, there’s no indent or ridge in my nail-bed and they look super healthy with no damage.

One of my all-time favourite nail colours is ‘Porchester Square’ by Nails Inc.  I’m a huge fan of a neutral, unique colour (my other favourite being the gorgeous ‘Particuliere’ by Chanel, reviewed here), although I am obsessive about beauty products and cosmetics I don’t usually buy nail polish because of going to the salon every 3 weeks to have my nails pampered, so my polish buying has tapered off over the years.

But every so often, like the Chanel moment, I see a colour and I simply must buy it.  ‘Porchester Square’ is gorgeous and I have always adored it but yet, for reasons of which I have noooo idea, I’ve never bought a bottle.  Which (after my usual high level of waffling on) leads me to the awesome Anna at viviannadoesmakeup.com , I follow Anna on Twitter @ViviannaMakeup and saw her post about a ‘Porchester Square’ dupe, link is here – after reading I instantly ordered a bottle!☺

I am so very impressed! Barry M Gelly Hi-Shine in ‘Almond’ is pretty much spot on as a ‘Porchester Square’ dupe, it’s still a quality brand but costing £3.99, instead of £11 for Nails Inc, I thought I’d give it a whirl.  I love its neutral, muted mushroomy, grey-lilacy shade, plus it goes with so many outfits – it’s a win-win!

I took my bottle along to the salon on Saturday and got Ems to pop a couple of coats on for me and then a gel top-coat and UV light sealed.  These babies won’t budge or chip for the next 3 weeks!

I had managed to do my own pedicure, my unsteady hand coating much of my foot in the process, with the Barry M colour so I’m now pinkie and tootsie co-ordinated☺I’ve already had a colleague compliment me on such a lovely colour, much of the time when I’m on the help desk at work I get talking to students because they notice my nails, I end up waffling (a thing I do way too much as every-one knows) to people and then realise that I queue has built up while I’ve been talking about products or the perfume I’m wearing – usually commented on as I douse myself obsessively and when walking into my office you’re greeted by a heavy wall of fragrance!

I digress, back to nail polish!  For anyone out there who loves ‘Porchester Square’ but has been yearning for a more budget-friendly version then Barry M Gelly Hi-Shine in ‘Almond’ is definitely the first (and only) stop you need – in my opinion!  The colour plus the finish is fab and I am so glad Anna wrote about it!

It’s a purchase that isn’t going to make a horrific dent in your bank balance and is a perfect all-seasons shade that will see you sporting it whilst being jumper’d and welly’d up as well as pretty frock’d and sandal’d



Bringing Back My Confidence Part II: Alpha-H Micro Cleanse

Alpha-H Part II

Micro Cleanse with Glycolic Acid & Rice Bran

The next member of the Alpha-H family to land on my bathroom shelf was their Micro Cleanse exfoliator.  I wanted something to give my skin a really good, deep-down clear out and after having a reaction to Johnson’s ‘gentle’ exfoliating face wash I was desperate for some help restoring my skin.

I started using this (known as ‘microdermabrasion in a tube’☺) twice a week – as instructed.  It uses naturally derived 12% Glycolic Acid with rice bran and peppermint essential oil, smells divine and really gets down into your skin leaving you with a fresh feeling that your pores have had a really good scrub down and rinse out!  The zingy cucumber combined with minty-ness leaves my skin feeling refreshed and as smooth as glass afterwards (that’s only way I can describe how it feels!)

I put the Micro Cleanse onto the palms of my hands and massage upwards and outwards from the inside to outside of my face – always avoiding near to the eye and lip area.  I can feel the tingle and again it isn’t unpleasant, my face feels smooth and the lines appear plumped out.  After I’ve massaged I usually leave it sitting on my skin for a few minutes and then wipe off with a warm face cloth.  My skin doesn’t feel tight and I still have that fabulous glass-like texture to my face.

Being suitable for normal, dry, combination, acne-prone and sun-damaged skin it suits me perfectly.  The dry patches, break-outs and sensitivity have meant that I have really struggled finding skin care that helps one without increasing the other.

It is worth every penny and I can’t see myself using any other exfoliator again to be honest, when you find the best version of something then keep with it I say!

My mush is far from being perfect but it’s getting a helluva lot better since I started the Alpha-regime, the addition of Micro Cleanse has made a noticeable impact in general but also I’m not suffering from such extreme break-outs (on a side note, my other half has open pores and very oily skin and can’t see why I complain but having closed pores and dry skin mean that when I get spots I GET spots – like huge red mountains on my face – and any blemish control gels/creams are far too harsh and abrasive on my skin)

My complexion has really improved with regular ridding of dead skin cell build-up, which has given me a fresher looking face, while the benefit of slotting in another Alpha-H product is helping with the hyperpigmentation that blights my face and causes me confidence issues.

All in all, this is another fantastic product from a brand that I have fallen in love with.  It really does help and gives a positive, noticeable effect unlike a lot of other exfoliators on the market that I’ve tried.





Follow them on twitter:  https://twitter.com/AlphaHQ

For more information on Alpha-H visit their website here

Other stockists include: Look Fantastic – Beauty Bay – Cult Beauty – QVCUK









Bringing back my confidence – Alpha-H Liquid Gold

Alpha-H Part I

Liquid Gold

Being a regular watcher of QVC I’d seen the Australian Alpha-H brand but never really given it much thought, that was until I saw a before/after photo of some-one with scarring who has experienced amazing results.  So I looked-up a little more about it and as soon as I read that it helps skin pigmentation I reached for my purse!

I have used so, so many products to try and ease the dark marks that appeared on my skin a few years ago.  They are predominately under my eyes and more on along my cheekbone area than ‘under-eye bags’.  I have vitamin D and calcium deficiencies as well as taking strong multiple combinations of prescription medications.  I guess getting older as well as the combination of drugs and my body lacking essentials had caused the pigmentation to intensify.

I have maximum coverage make-up and concealers that help to disguise the marks to an extent but I am incredibly self-conscious and the repetitive ‘you look so tired’ comments over the years have really got to me.  The marks have even been mistaken for bruises at times too!

And so I ordered a bottle of this magical ‘Liquid Gold’ by Alpha-H.  Liquid Gold is an overnight application serum which is instantly absorbed into the skin, said to be firming and reviving from the first application and helping tackle hyper-pigmentation, acne, fine lines and large pores, reversing some of the symptoms of ageing and sun damage… that’s a lot of tick-boxes for me!!!

I was worried using a glycolic acid product as my skin is very sensitive at times and has always been dry with the occasional break-out.  I had a mooch online and Wikipedia had the following info (bit wordy but I got the jist!) about the use of glycloic acid in skin care:

“may reduce wrinklesacne scarringhyperpigmentation and improve many other skin conditions, including actinic keratosishyperkeratosis, and seborrheic keratosis. Once applied, glycolic acid reacts with the upper layer of the epidermisweakening the binding properties of the lipids that hold the dead skin cells together.  This allows the stratum corneum to be exfoliated, exposing live skin cells”

I did a skin-test and didn’t have a reaction so before bed I wiped a cotton wool pad dabbed with Liquid Gold over my face – avoiding lips and eye area.  It did have a tingle but it didn’t last too long and wasn’t unpleasant.

The next day I woke up and felt my skin was a little ‘plumper’, it felt okay with no rash or side effects that had appeared, so each alternate evening for the last 4 weeks I have wiped my mush with Liquid Gold …I could cry with happiness!

I can see that my dark marks are gradually easing! ☺ Years and years of hating the way they showed through my make-up so badly, of always wearing sunnies or my glasses if I didn’t have make-up on so they helped disguise them, the amount of foundation and concealer I use – all of this had started to ease with one bottle of product!

And here is my before and after photo – The ‘after’ pic, at the bottom, had got more sunlight coming through when I took it but you can still see the difference using Liquid Gold has made to the dark marks from the above ‘before’ pic and also evening out my skin tone!

The fine lines which I detest, that barge their way through my make-up like the first in queue at the Boxing Day shopping sales, have also plumped out and aren’t anywhere near as uncontrollable since using Alpha-H.  I get ‘smile-lines’ and lines between my eyebrows which even with using primer and touching up my base colour midday I still had to put up with them showing through, but over these 4 weeks they have also eased a considerable amount.  Some days I get home and they are barely visible even after a whole day of yapping, frowning (I do that a lot) and tea drinking.

I can’t recommend trying Liquid Gold enough if, like me, you suffer with dark skin pigmentation that has so far refused to budge.  I was low enough to buy really dodgy looking products from eBay because the loathing I felt after having to look in the mirror was getting unbearable.

My dark marks are still present but it has only been 4 weeks using Alpha-H products!  Although the pigmentation is still visible the marks aren’t like I’m rocking an Adam Ant esque stripe across my cheekbones anymore.  I have seen a vast reduction in size and depth of the colour, I feel more confident and I really can’t wait to see the results after another 4 weeks.

I always really look forward to my Liquid Gold nights now! ☺ It is an amazing product and anyone who has acne scarring, pigmentation, fine lines etc. should give it a whirl.  My only wish is that I’d bought it years ago.  I make sure I use a moisturiser with a high SPF every day, at the moment I love Murad Essential-C day cream which is SPF30, to protect my skin from sun sensitivity after using the Alpha-H range.  I also have SPF in my Bare Minerals foundation and mineral veil powder so I know I am safely covered.

Known by many as an ’overnight facial in a bottle’ (and I do wake up the next day and feel like I have got a new face on!) this bottle of bestselling, magical skin resurfacing treatment is loved by many across the globe and it is definitely going to have a permanent home on my bathroom shelf from now on!

My love affair with Alpha-H had been initiated, the cogs set in motion, my pinkie at the ready to ‘add to basket’, my lonely bottle of Liquid Gold needed some family to keep it company… and here is where my obsession started – Part II coming soon!





Follow them on twitter:  https://twitter.com/AlphaHQ

For more information on Alpha-H visit their website HERE

Other stockists include: Look Fantastic – Beauty Bay – Cult Beauty – QVC UK




Get Your Paws On This Beauty Bargain!


As I aged another year recently, another haul of beauty products were happily received! ☺

One of the gifts I unwrapped was this fabulous little tube of fantastic from PapayaGold, their Paw Paw moisturising balm is packed with Bio Active Manuka Honey 20+ and Australia’s Paw Paw (Papaya) fruit which contains Papain that helps to lower inflammation and improve healing from burns and cuts.  We’ve all read about the benefits of Manuka Honey with its antibacterial, antiseptic and amongst others, healing properties.  I took a spoonful a day while I was really ill to ward off the pains of inflammation in my body and it helped me feel better on the inside, to combine this with papaya and formulate a topical balm sounds like a match made in heaven …and it is!

With no parabens or sulphates, containing Pharmaceutical Grade Petrolatum, Carica Papaya (paw paw) fruit extract, Bees Wax, Bio Active Manuka Honey 20+ and Potassium Sorbate – the balm is clear with a texture like petroleum jelly (but not as greasy) and doesn’t have a scent or taste to it.

My lips are constantly cracked and dry and I am forever trying out different brands of lotions and potions, first off I used this balm on my lips and instantly felt the nourishment, after regular applying my lips felt softer and no more peeling.  The combination of weather changes as well as air-con and central heating mean it’s a constant battle to keep my lips and skin looking healthy.

Paw Paw balm can also be used by people who are prone to eczema, psoriasis and dermatitis, the skin in between my fingers gets so dry and flakes off so I started popping some balm on before I went to bed and after a few days my skin had rehydrated, as had the eczema on my cheek which had refused to budge for a few weeks no matter what I put on it!

My husband suffers from very itchy eczema on his neck which flares up quite badly from time to time, especially when he scratches his neck while sleep.  For a few nights in a row I popped some Paw Paw on before he went to bed and after a few days it looked so much better and the itching had subsided, in fact, it was barely visible.

I don’t think I can be without Paw Paw now I’ve seen, first-hand, how well it works.  I carry it in my handbag in the day and transfer to my bedside table in the evening – where I go, it goes!

My lips are still feeling soft and the itchy eczema that appears on my face, hands and arms is kept at bay with a few applications when needed.  You don’t need to use very much so this 25g tube will last quite a while.

I’ve found using this balm has very similar effects to when I use Elizabeth Arden 8-Hour Cream – which is quite something seeing as 8-Hour Cream has quite an iconic status!

And a final bit of fabulous is that you can find this on the high street too!  Mine was bought from Superdrug at a very purse-friendly £5.99! http://www.superdrug.com/search?q=papayagold&searchsubmit=Search

If you’re suffering from dry and/or cracked skin go ahead and try out this amazing bargain.  It’s now listed on my beauty ‘repeat-prescription’ ☺

You can follow them on Twitter here too! – https://twitter.com/PapayaGold

CC’ing is Believing!

Phytomer CC Crème SPF20

Thanks to the lovely people at Gorgeous Shop I received this fabulous freebie! – Phytomer CC Crème.  I’ve tried face and eye masks from Phytomer and was left very impressed so I couldn’t wait to try out my first CC crème.

I do like BB creams but as I suffer from horrid dark skin pigmentation under my eyes that have blighted my face due to multiple medications for the last few years, I was hoping that the colour-correcting element would prove a worthy opponent to my panda-eyes and it most certainly was!  I didn’t have that much belief that a cream alone would give me enough coverage and even my skin tone, but Phytomer’s blend didn’t disappoint.

In a shade said to suit most skin tones, the cream is formulated with Phytomer’s VMR “Visible Marine Refiner” which, as well as being a moisturiser it also stimulates cell turnover, regeneration, pore refinement and helps the skin’s own production of hyaluronic acid, which gives us more plumped-up skin.  I found my fine lines weren’t as prominent and my dry skin wasn’t intensified either, like a big beige flapjack stuck on my face that can happen after trying some tinted creams.  The coverage was sufficient for me to brave the World without paranoia or ‘you look so tired’ comments which tend to hurtle my way.  I used the cream alone but I’ll definitely be trying out as a primer under my make-up too, another tick box for me is that Phytomer CC Crème has SPF20 so, as the weather turns warmer, it’s nice to know that my skin has an extra layer of protection from harmful sun rays.

A few hours later into the day and my skin was still sporting enough coverage and didn’t feel heavy, even though I had applied two layers first thing that morning.

It’s definitely going to be used a lot over the Summer months, to be able to have a day in the sunshine without being armed with a bulging make-up bag is something to look forward to, and extra room in my bag for other essentials… like sweeties and sunglasses for beer-garden frequenting☺

For those who don’t like to wear make-up but feel they’re beginning to need a little something to even out their complexion, or for people like me who wear maximum coverage all the time and want to ease up the routine some days, then Phytomer gets a thumbs-up from me for coverage, application and endurance.





And here’s a little blurb ab0ut the fabulous brand:

Phytomer at a glance:
With over 40 years as the leader in the marine skin care, Phytomer is now a pioneer in the field of marine biotechnology, the future of results-oriented cosmetics. This is the newest technology to create innovative, 100% natural skin care ingredients. Based in Saint-Malo, France and distributed in 70 countries worldwide, Phytomer has a reputation of leadership and expertise within the spa industry. With Phytomer meaning “plant of the sea,” we utilize seawater, seaweed or seaside plants in every retail and professional product, combining science with the natural powers of the sea. We are one of the only spa brands with our own laboratory, allowing us to research and cultivate our own ingredients, develop unique cosmetic formulas, manufacture skin care products and create cutting-edge professional treatments to deliver remarkable results.

Zero Calorie Cacao Indulgence!

Clayspray – Glow Red Clay with Cacao Masque

I’m a sucker for products, I have no restraint and I somehow justified the need and purchase of another face mask… it was clay, in a spray what’s not to need there!

I ordered the Glow Red Clay with Cacao and the H2O Water Spray.

I love a quirky product too and this ticked all the boxes, plus I was interested to see if it’d help my uneven skin tone left on my face due to the multiple medications I need to take each day leaving dark marks under my eyes and me feeling awfully self-conscious about them (and constant comments regarding how tired I must be when I’m not actually lacking in sleep)

I spritzed the water spray over my face before I applied the clay mask, I did feel hydration seeping into my skin, my skin is quite dry too and the water spray is lovely to use if I’m feeling a bit parched in the face too, as well as setting my make-up in the mornings.

I pumped a splodge into the palm of my hand then carefully applied the mask to my face, avoiding near to my eyes.  I’d forgotten it was cacao!


The glorious waft of chocolate surrounded me, very tempted to have a lick but then remembered it wasn’t food… but the smell is gorgeous!  It looks scary on though, just like I had melted some chocolate and put it on my face!  I kept my fingers crossed that there would be no knocks at the door for the duration while I watched, intrigued, as it dried and changed to a lighter colour, about 20 minutes.


Then I washed my face in warm water and patted dry, the sink looked like I had chucked mud in it!  So after giving that a good clean afterwards too, I spritzed more H2O spray on and had a look at the after effects.

I was rather impressed I have to say and still am!  I could tell that my skin did have more of a glow to it and after the 3rd regular application now that I’ve had, it does appear to be easing the ferocity of my uneven skin tone, it doesn’t seem as dark, still visible but a lot better.

My face felt hydrated, smooth and also healthier (which is nice that one part of me at least does!)  I had hoped I’d like Clayspray but …I adore it!

I can say it’s definitely worth having a try out, and with lots of different mixtures there’ll be one for everyone and every skin type.

The smell alone was magical! ☺

Follow Clayspray on Twitter here


Scrub a dub-dub, a sweet sugar rub! – Bliss Lip Scrub Review

Bliss Fabulips Sugar Lip Scrub 15ml – £12

These tough winter months have caused havoc trying to keep my poor lips from peeling, cracking and generally looking like two very red overcooked sausages that words come out of, instead of a smooth, supple pout that is my preference when having to speak to people.

I’m a lip-balm-a-holic and love trying out new brands.  The state of my skin called for something with a little extra power though, and so I stumbled upon Bliss Fabulips Sugar Scrub, after a quick read through I’d ordered a pot.

I have tried out two lip exfoliators before, one was Benefit’s Lipscription which was a very lovely product that gave brilliant results (and now discontinued!) And also Ole Henriksen’s African Red Tea Exfoliating Lip Salvation which is a very good one too that I use before bed.  I did feel my lips needed an exfoliator to rid the dryness and the dead skin cells that seemed to be clogging my skin and hindering the healing of where they had cracked and peeled.  I needed something more ‘heavy-duty’ as the Ole one hadn’t helped as much as usual …I was in dire need of some lip product help!

As soon as the pot from Bliss arrived I opened it up and first point of call was a good sniff (vanilla + orange flavoured) – and it does smell delicious, which is always a good start!  I read the write-up online and after I’d taken my make-up off applied a medium layer over my lips, then (with clean pinkies) massaged the sugar scrub as directed in circular motions over my lips, it felt nice, although with the almond and walnut shell in it does have a slight gritty feel but it isn’t unpleasant.  I carried on over my lips and on the inner parts where they were really dry and flaky and also massaged a little over my lip-line too.  After the scrub had been layered on and then rubbed in I got a clean little flannel, soaked it in warm water and gently wiped the scrub off.

Even after that first use of Fabulips Scrub my lips felt smoother and hydrated.  The jojoba seed, olive oils, shea and cocoa butters plus vitamins A, C and E nourish and condition your lips and I could feel all of the benefits (still needing more applications, but so much better than before) I followed up with a nice juicy layer of Elizabeth Arden 8-hour cream, a multi-taker of magnificence and also a wonderful balm for lips.

I have found myself using the sugar scrub as a usual lip balm too at times, if I get a bit that hasn’t any ‘scrubby’ bits in I’ll put it on and let it sink in.  I use it throughout the day and as I can’t easily get a warmed flannel at work I have a supply of fragrance-free face wipes that I use to take the scrub off after massaging in.

Since regular use I’ve noticed a difference and my pout is definitely sporting a more positive looking pose!

I would recommend trying out Bliss Fabulips Scrub, it smells lovely, it works and you don’t need very much of it.

There is, to my delight, a whole range of Fabulips including balm and lip cleanser …I must admit they are extremely tempting!  Another entry on the ever-increasing wish-lish☺

My only qualm (and it’s a tidgy one) would be having an implement to apply the scrub with, I do have a lot of applicators from past products so I use one of those – OR another idea would be to treat yourself to a pack of the Cadbury’s ‘Egg ‘n’ Spoon’ chocolates as the cute purple spoon would make a great little applicator to get the scrub out of the pot …and you can legitimately buy chocolate! – It’s for ESSENTIAL application of treatment to help your weather-blighted lips get their bounce back☺ Go on, treat yourself… to both!

To sum up, I’m very impressed and I really like this lip scrub, it’s not too harsh and it does work – which is the ultimate goal when we’re paying out for products.  The price I’m also happy with for how much it’s softened and helped my skin problem when nothing else had enough effect or noticeable difference.

My lips are now on their way to looking fab-u-lipious!

So thank you Bliss.  One day my wish-lish will be fulfilled with the whole set in my grasp and will make me a happy, smiley, soft-lipped Haystack ☺

Visit Bliss here to read more on their lip range and more!

Banish Blemishes with Bare Minerals!

Bare Minerals Blemish Remedy

When I bought Bare Minerals Blemish Remedy I have to be honest, I didn’t think it would be as effective as it has turned out to be. I’d not been able to ease some stubborn spots from a breakout caused, I think, from my dairy allergy. The few that were left on my face did not want to budge, they were just raised, red lumps so I noticed them even with my make-up on, very very very annoying!

I used some breakout lotions that had really helped the initial part of the spot saga so, frustrated and irritated (much like my face) I turned to Bare Minerals for a look to see if there was anything from one of my favourite brands I hadn’t yet tried and that, my friends, is when I saw ‘Blemish Remedy’. After reading the blurb including the impressive ‘Zest Smart Beauty Awards 2013 – Best Blemish Buster Award’ I put it straight in my virtual basket and checked out☺

I admit I was a little ‘ooooof’ when I saw the rather small pot but you really don’t need very much at all and with the fab brush, that’s included, to apply the powder it will last a good while, so I felt a little better with the size to price ratio situation!

The main busters in this powder are the ActiveSoilTM Complex along with the benefits of natural sulphur, it also states that it helps to minimise the appearance of pores, neutralise redness and diffuse imperfections. Now the sulphur will give you that smell, it didn’t make me gag and it didn’t stop me from using it, you can just smell the sulphury aroma but the benefits of this little pot outweigh the odd smell!

I used the Blemish Remedy under and over my Bare Minerals make-up, just a little dab and then occasionally through the day if the redness was showing. At night I popped a little bit on to give it an extra layer of spot-busting power and I have to admit it really did help the spots. I didn’t think it would, I’ll be honest here, but over just two days the redness had faded and the spot-lumps had decreased in size – they were now ‘manageable’ ☺

I carried on using a few dabs for the next few days until the spots had disappeared and my skin didn’t have any adverse effects like over-drying out, which I’d anticipated would happen as I’ve got quite sensitive skin. I was very careful though and applied it only directly to the monster- sized spots in need of urgent attention!

As a massive Bare Minerals fan I’m really pleased that this is yet another product from their brand that I love – and that does work! It’s always in my handbag for emergency help in case of spot appearance and it is, in my opinion, brill value for money.  I’ve used it quite a bit and there’s plenty left, so don’t let the cost put you off.

It may not work so effectively for every-one but in my case it was fab and has a massive thumbs-up from The Haystack!

And here is some information and statistics from the Bare Minerals web-site for you!


Zest Smart Beauty Awards 2013 – Best Blemish Buster Award.

Here’s what women have said*:

  • 82% of women felt it effectively reduced blemishes and breakouts.
  • 78% of women saw a reduction in redness and more even-toned skin.
  • 77% of women felt their skin looked clearer.

*Based on an independent U.S. consumer study of 75 women.

  • Swirl brush into treatment, tap off excess and gently pat onto blemish.
  • For larger problem areas, apply a light layer over affected area (avoiding the eye area).
  • For best results, use at the onset of a blemish.
  • Applying a light layer over problem areas daily can also help prevent new breakouts from forming.

Don’t Fear The Oil – not just for chips!

Pukka Nourishing Face Oil

I’m a sucker for products (that’s maybe stating the obvious a touch!) but when I saw this funky oil from Pukka I couldn’t resist giving it a try!  Even the box looks inviting☺

My skin is dry in places due to my eczema and it also feels damaged from all the toxins I put into my body to keep my pain at a bearable level.  The Nourishing Face Oil from Pukka is a restorative oil especially for skin like mine and it smells divine, thanks to the subtle fragrance of rose and rose geranium.  It’s Pukka’s formula of Ayurvedic herbs which helps to revitalise tired skin as well as the added avocado and pomegranate that really hydrates your skin.

When I first used this oil I still had effects of eczema all over my forehead, the skin felt awful and dry, it was peeling and was visible even with my mineral foundation on.  I put a few pumps of it over my entire face and massaged in, it soaks up quite quickly and doesn’t leave too much of a residue and you can use it before you moisturise as well, giving yourself an extra layer of hydration.  Over the weekend I kept regularly applying it throughout the day and before bed, also adding a little moisturiser. 

Monday morning arrived and I used a face exfoliating pad with my cleanser and gave my face the once over, when I looked in the mirror my forehead was clear of dry skin!☺ The skin really did feel silky smooth with no patches left or peeling skin visible!  To say I was impressed is an understatement!

I’ve been adding in Pukka Face Oil to my daily routine now for the last two weeks and it has kept my skin hydrated and plumped up – like someone has injected all the craggy horrible bits with boingy sponge!  My face does feel boingier and healthier.  I still use a moisturizer afterwards but just a little layer over the top. 

I really, really love the smell, to be honest it is a surprise to me as the smell of roses hasn’t been something I’ve been overly fond over in the past but the subtlety of the fragrance in this oil isn’t too overpowering.

I’m going to be a regular user of this Pukka oil, the benefits that I’ve had from it are very noticeable and have improved my skin in just two weeks, I am surprised it has done so much as my skin was really awful when I started using it.  I felt like my face was more wire-scourer/flap-jack looking than nice smooth skin!

And with an organic content of 99.9% anyone who prefers the ‘greener’ products on the market then this is a must-try☺

Product information –

Soil Association Certified – organic content: 99.9%.
Completely free from parabens, petrochemicals, synthetic fragrances and colours.

Ingredients: Oenothera biennis (EveningPrimrose) Seed Oil*, Cannabis sativa (Hemp) SeedOil*, Sesamum indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil*, Prunus amygdalus dulcis (Almond) Seed Oil*, Simmondsia chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil*, Helianthusannuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil*, Persea gratissima (Avocado) Oil*, Triticum vulgare (Wheatgerm) Oil*, Punica granatum (Pomegranate) Seed Oil*, Perillaocymoides (Perilla) Seed Oil*, Hippophae rhamnoides (Sea Buckthorn) Oil*, Rosa damascena (Rose Otto) Flower Oil*, Calendula officinalis (Calendula) FlowerExtract*, Pelargonium graveolens (Rose Geranium)Flower Oil*, Tocopherol‡, Santalum spicata (Australian Sandalwood) Wood Oil*, Emblicaofficinalis (Amla) Fruit 100:1 Extract*, Hydrocotyle asiatica (Gotu Kola) Leaf 120:1 Extract*, Curcumalonga (Turmeric) Root 20:1 Extract*, Ocimumsanctum (Tulsi) Leaf 70:1 Extract*, Citral†, Eugenol†,Geraniol†, Citronellol†, Farnesol†, Limonene†,Linalool†.

* Organic (Organic content: 99.9%) 
† Naturally occurs in essential oils 
‡ Derived from plants 
() Nature identical preservative system approved by Organic Standards

Three Cheers For Chia!

Chia Seeds

I’ve read quite a bit recently about chia seeds and how they are a nutritious addition to your diet and are bursting with goodness.  These little seeds come from a flowering plant in the mint family and initially were sold as part of baking ingredients before the health benefits were further looked into.  Research has been quite limited so far but evidence from human trials suggests Chia has numerous positive effects on health including aiding digestion, lowering cholesterol , helping to stabilise blood sugar as well as being an energy booster …sounds good so far!  They also contain manganese , calcium and omega-3 fats and approx. 28g serving is said to provide about a third of your recommended daily intake of fibre for adults.

I’m all for health foods that increase my calcium consumption, being allergic to dairy does limit what I can have and although I take supplements I am mindful of keeping my bones as strong and healthy as I possibly can.  And so I bought some to try out ☺

I had read a few ideas about how to prepare Chia and I opted for the soak overnight one first.  I used 3 tablespoons of Chia Seeds with 1 cup of KoKo milk and left it in the fridge.  My other half was quite unnerved by the ‘frogspawn looking stuff’ in the jar!  It does have the consistency of frogspawn I must admit and it was a very odd texture to experience when I tried a little spoonful.  I didn’t taste a flavour a such, maybe a slight nuttiness but otherwise quite tasteless, this isn’t a bad thing though.  Like Tofu, it means I can add whatever I choose into it for taste and (hopefully) reap the health benefits that it contains.

I chucked in a cup of blueberries and a chopped banana with a spoonful of natural sweetener.  I liked it!  It just added some ‘bulk’ to be honest.  The next day I tried it dry and sprinkled a tablespoon in with my cereal and added in my KoKo milk, a slight taste but not unpleasant.  I am happy in the knowledge that I’m adding extra healthiness into my food in a very easy way.

The bag I got from Holland & Barrett cost just under £3, which I thought a little expensive at the time, but you really don’t use very much and the bag will last me quite a while.

Next time I’m going to try Chia Seeds soaked in dairy-free chocolate milk & banana for a yummy, sweet and healthy snack☺