Morning bath meditation…

Posted by Corine. 

Work and life in general can be a great source of stress and the problem with stress is that it sticks to you until you take action to kick it out of your system! Yoga classes, breathing exercises and night time meditations just won’t do it when you wake up in the morning and realise you have to deal with a long day at work filled with crap and stress… buckets loads of stress! So before the feeling becomes too overwhleming and you still have a clear and rested mind, try following these few simple steps to start your day the best way possible.

  • Set you alarm 10 minutes earlier than usual as you do not want to have to rush to get out of the door… we are trying to start the day stress free after all!
  • Run yourself a warm bath and close the bathroom door so the room gets warm. (Sort out your outfit for the day or set up the breakfast table while you wait for the bathtub to fill up to save yourself time)
  • Soak in the warm bath for 5-10 minutes surrounded by silence (if at all possible!)
  • Breathing slowly and fully, focus your mind on the sensation of your body floating and your muscle relaxing in the warm water.

Beginning the day with a few minutes to wake up my mind and my body in a gentle way and in a relaxed and non-rushed environment has become an important part of my morning routine and it really helps me to tackle the day ahead!

For further relaxation and muscle relief, I like to add Epsom Salt to the water. It breaks down into magnesium and sulphate which are believed to get into your body through your skin to help relax and soothe muscles and loosen stiff joints. Westlab Pure Mineral Bathing offers a range of salts that treat aching muscles, itchy skin, etc. They are available at Boots at £2.49 for 1KG bag.

Essential OilsAlso make the most of aromatherapy by adding essential oils to your bath so you can inhale the oils that evaporates in the warm bath water. Only choose essential oils that are gentle on the skin like lavender (Lavandula anguvstifolia) or roman chamomile (Chamaemelum mobile). The essential oil of your choice should be mixed with a blending oil before it is added to the water (5 drops of essential oil to a tablespoon of carrier oil). Tisserand Aromatherapy have a great range of quality essentials oils and organic blending oil on their website. Essential oils are a powerful remedy for many ailments  so make the most of them by carefully researching which one suits your needs and always respect the label instructions and general guidelines.

I hope you enjoyed reading this post. Please like and leave a comment if you feel like it : )

Advertisements

June Beauty Favourites…

Posted by Corine. 

Thick&Fast

Thick & Fast Super Volume Mascara by Soap & Glory (£10 at Boots)

I have been loving this mascara so much and I regret not buying it before due to the slightly negative reviews online. I guess it does not work for everyone as some girls would like it to be more heavy duty but it really does the job for me as my lashes are naturally quite long so less is best! The brush is quite basic and could definitely be improved but a few layers really gives me a glamorous, but natural, false lashes finish and separate my lashes amazingly. I love the result so badly that it is all I have been wearing on my eyes this month!

 


Natural Bamboo Charcoal Face Oil Blotting Paper by Pleasing Care (£6.95 on Amazon)

This product is a best-seller on Amazon and I totally get why! Unless other brands I have tested in the past, these excess oil absorbing sheets are larger than most allowing a full face touch-up with one sheet without a problem which is great if you are an oily lady like me! The best part for me is that the sheets do not leave a powdery residue on the skin… an essential requirement as I want to fix my shiny face without having to add any more powder and avoid the caky look that comes with it! The packaging is also super convenient and cute… it says “Hello, Pretty You” inside which is a sweet way to lift up your moods and make you feel better about that shiny oily face in the mirror!

 

opi-infinite-shine-fiji-collection-fullsetOPI Infinite Shine Nail Lacquer (£13.95 each on opiuk.com)

The Infinite Shine collection is stunning and offers a truly amazing range of colours! As it says on the tin, the gel-like shine lasts for a week without a problem and so does your nail polish! There is no touch ups needed for a whole full week. If you are wearing it on gel nail extensions like me, you can easily go three weeks with a vibrant and stunning colour. I am so impressed with the Infinite Shine range and I wish I could own all of these sumptuous colours!

 

 

Cetaphil

 

Gentle Skin Cleanser by Cetaphil (£8.99 for 236ml at Superdrug)

Last but not least, the best products are the ones that make you feel good about yourself… well this one definitely does as it has helped my itchy skin so much during this warm weather! This super gentle face and body cleanser is non-irritating but still removes dirt and impurities. I use it to remove my make-up in combination with an eye make-up remover and it does the job without leaving my skin feeling dry and tight. I also love that its compact format allows me to take it with me on holiday unlike similar products which comes in massive bottles!

 

 

Thank you for reading! Like or leave a comment below if you enjoyed reading this post. 

Must Try Facial Massage

Posted by Carole

Last month I came across an article about the benefits of face massages and I had a small light bulb moment!

We all agree that body massages, from a gentle rub to deep-tissue massaging, are beneficial for our body as they soothe and stimulate our muscles and joints but what about our face? We rub our skin with moisturizers and oils but never give our face muscles an actual massage and it’s a shame because our face would benefit from it as much as our body!

So for the past month I’ve been experiencing ‘face massage’ every evening as part of my beauty routine and here’s what happened:

  1. The first time:

I went through my usual cleansing routine then applied CAUDALIE VINE[ACTIV] OVERNIGHT DETOX OIL on my face and used three fingers on each hands to move across my face in small circular movements, making sure to apply a firm yet painless pressure to feel my muscles and move them. I began with my checkbones, moved up to my forefront then down my nose and jawline.

I found the all experience extremely relaxing and enjoyable, especially when I massaged parts of my face I usually don’t focus on too much like the part in between my eyes. Even if the massage lasted less than five minutes, I enjoyed taking the time to give myself some love and self-care.

The day after I didn’t notice any specific change.

  1. Two weeks in:

I keep on massaging my face for about five minutes every evening as I find the routine to be very soothing and enjoyable. However, I can’t notice any visible results and sometimes doubt I will see any.

  1. Four weeks in:

After a month of daily facial massages, I can finally notice a difference. It’s not huge nor spectacular but there is something! I’m not even sure what it is but there is a nice plumpness to my skin that is definitely new as well as a brighter skin tone. Maybe it’s not even the massage but the ‘me-time’ I indulge in every day that has this effect on my skin but whatever it is I love it and will definitely keep on face massaging!

I love it so much I’ve asked my Twinnie to try it and give us her feedback on this blog in a month time so stay tune!

I’d also love to hear about your experience so do try and let us know!

Thanks for reading! Like and leave a comment below if you enjoyed reading this article and if you would like to share your own beauty tips with us!

 

Mandatory Sunday Beauty Rituals

Posted by Carole

Sunday mornings are synonym with late lie-in and croissants for me but also pampering sessions as I never miss the occasion to take care of myself and indulge in a bit of “me time”.

I can actually spend a couple of hours in my bathroom enjoying a warm bath, exfoliating or painting my nails, my routine varies however there are two beauty rituals that are always on my list and they are both masks, one for my face and one for my hair.

So today I wanted to share with you the mandatory beauty rituals I cannot live without!

HAIR MASK

This is maybe my favourite beauty product as it never fails to give incredible results! This product is PHYTOELIXIR OIL by PHYTO, an intense nutrition oil that deeply nourishes my hair and leaves them incredibly smooth and luscious.

Phyto 123.pngMy secret is to apply the elixir on the tips and length of my hair as soon as I wake up, tie my hair in a bun as it makes them quite greasy and leave on for a few hours, basically all morning as I roam in my PJ’s having breakfast and lazing around!

Phyto recommends to leave on for 10 minutes only before washing off but I can assure you that the longer the better the results will be so don’t be afraid to spend your morning with slightly oily hair, it’s totally worth it!

The price of £26.50 might seem quite pricey but a bottle of 75ml lasts me 6 months or more, not bad considering the amazing results.

FACIAL MASK

I am a big fan of DECLEOR’s products including their facial masks! There are two masks I really like and alternatively apply on my face once a week.

Decleor 1

The first one is AROMA PURETE PURIFYING & EXFOLIATING MASK, an Ylang-Ylang essential oil treatment with deeply purifying, mattifying and rebalancing properties, ideal for oily skin types. The clay includes tiny particles allowing you to exfoliate by applying gentle circular movements to your skin before rinsing your face off.

The second one is AROMA CLEANSE CLAY AND HERBAL MASK, a creamy purifying white clay treatment packed with camomille and ginseng essential oils to soothe the skin and boost its elasticity.

Both masks give great results and leave my skin replenished with a clearer, brighter skin tone and a nice plumpness. The smell and texture of the white clay mask are also exquisite and it doesn’t leave my skin dry like most clay masks I’ve tried.

The only downside is their price, £25 and £28.50 respectively for 50ml so I usually wait for sales or promotions to buy these masks.

Thanks for reading! Like and leave a comment below if you enjoyed reading this article and if you would like to share your fav products with us!

Anti-Pollution Beauty Routine…

Posted by Corine 

Sadly we hear the words dangerous high peak of pollution too often these days and as much as we would all like to avoid its nasty effects on our health, most of us have no choice but to brave it on a daily basis. Add to that the fact that pollution not only has devastating consequences on our health, it also plays havoc with our glowing skin and hair! Common sense is to avoid highly polluted areas but how is that even possible in a large city like our sweet London town?! No, I am afraid avoidance is not an option here! Thankfully there are a few steps you can add to your beauty routine that will help you battle this invisible enemy!

city-569093__480

Whether you are wearing make up or not during the day, make sure to clean your skin before you go to bed. Your regular face wash will do as long as it contains gentle ingredients that will not disrupt the skin neutral pH any further. If you have a very sensitive skin, the Clarins Anti-Pollution Milk will be your savior as it cleans and moisturizes the skin at the same time. It costs £20 for 200ml which is a reasonable price for a high quality product that personally lasts me a few months. Go green if you want by removing make up and excess oil with coconut oil before massaging a thin layer of natural yogurt on to your face. You may feel like a fool but the protein and lactic acid contained in yogurts are the perfect way to gently unclog your pores and detoxify your skin from pollution. Whatever cleansing method you go for, do not forget to add a barrier of protection to your skin by moisturizing your face and body especially when you are about to leave your home and head to those polluted streets and always add a UV protection even if it is cloudy out there!

Same goes for your hair! Think about it, what is the point of carefully cleaning your face if you are about to rub it all night on a pillowcase covered with dust and particles of pollution! Indeed whatever dirt your hair have collected during the day will end up on your pillowcase so you might want to wash your hair before bed by using a deep cleansing shampoo. Its clarifying formula will remove most build-up and impurities. If you prefer to wash you hair in the morning, make sure to gently brush your hair with a bore paddle brush to remove some of the dust accumulated during the day. Oh… and change that pillowcase as much as you can… like every other day… well at least every week… OK, OK… don’t keep it for more than a month then!

agua do mar aerosolClean your nose! You are about to think that I am a complete nutter (which is probably true!) but nasal hygiene is a real thing and you should start considering it now. Think about it for a minute and you will probably realize how dry and congested your nose sometimes feel after a busy day in town. Well here comes the marvelous Sterimar isotonic nasal hygiene spray! It is 100% natural, has antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and anti-allergy properties and it is suitable for the whole family, babies included. A 100ml bottle will last you months and cost you a very reasonable £7.99. Nasal hygiene has become as important as washing my hands when I get home and I am always stunned by the amount of black dust that comes out of my nostrils after being out and especially after riding the Tube! Plus my congested nose is a thing of the past at bedtime and I definitely catch a cold less often than in the past!

Ventilate your home everyday, especially your bedroom! With all the synthetic materials we have and the chemicals we use on a daily basis (cleaning products, hairspray, perfumes, etc.) the inside of our homes is sometimes as polluted as the outdoor! Allowing fresh air in every room by opening your windows for 15 minutes everyday will improve the air quality of your home drastically and you may quickly notice that your skin is less dry and irritated. Make sure to reduce your use of chemicals by replacing your house cleaning products by bio and natural options. Also, why not invest in a air-purifying indoor plant? A NASA research has shown that the Garden Mum does a fantastic job at absorbing nasties like ammonia, benzene, formaldehyde and xylene from indoor air. If like me you find it difficult to keep anything alive inside your home, try the Spider Plant, it is pretty, easy to care for and cheap!

herbal-tea-1410565_1280

Last but not least, protect yourself by staying hydrated to flush the toxins out of your system and keep that healthy glow! If you find drinking a few litres of plain water everyday difficult, consider buying or making your own tasty herbal infusions. Fresh mint is available in most shops and all you have to do is throw a good bunch of it in to a teapot with boiling water for a delightful after dinner brew. It goes without saying but please stay away from sugary drinks, they are nasty and will do you no good! And don’t forget that vegetables and fruits not only contain water, they are also a fantastic source of antioxidants that will  help prevent and delay cells decay caused by pollution.

Please leave a comment and let us know how you feel pollution affects you and your skin/hair on a daily basis. And of course, please share your tricks and tips with us!

DIY Beauty

Posted by Carole

A few weeks ago I realized that I ran out of facial mask so I went through every cupboard of my bathroom as I know that, for some reason, I never throw away empty beauty products but instead store them somewhere in a corner, hidden under samples I gathered from previous shopping session but almost never use. Unfortunately, I quickly realized that there was no facial mask to be found in there as I had already exhausted my stock after a few months spent in Switzerland, where everything is so expensive I can’t afford any waste and have to harvest every last drop of my fav beauty products.

I was upset for a moment as I knew I had to wait for my next trip to France to stock up on facial masks (Aroma Cleanse Clay and Herbal Mask + Life Radiance Flash Radiance Mask by Décleor are favourites) but then decided to face adversity and prepare my very own facial mask. After all, I had read many articles on the Internet from girls concocting their home-made beauty products so why not me? Determined, I went to the kitchen to look for miracle ingredients but again, my stock was running low and I soon realized that I didn’t have coconut oil nor rose water nor plain yogurt so my choices were quite limited. Luckily, I finally set my eyes on one of my favourite ingredient and one that is as tasty as it’s beneficial for your body… and your skin! That is honey of course!

Honey is a marvelous ingredient that one should always have home for multiple reasons.

This super ingredient is

  • Rich in minerals, vitamins and antioxidants
  • Has antibacterial properties and helps reduce allergies
  • Helps fight acne
  • Is a healthy and natural sweetener

There are so many things you can do with honey! It’s the ideal sweetener for your deserts, it’s fabulous in warm water to calm irritations coughs and sore throats or as a balm to appease superficial burnt or some types of skin conditions but honey is also one of the purest and most effective ingredient you can use to prepare homemade facial masks and today I’ll give you very easy recipes adapted to each skin type.

I must admit that I was a bit skeptical at first but lacking other options, I decided to give it a try and put some music on, poured myself a bath and applied the sweet mixture on my face. When I woke up from a little snooze twenty minutes later, I washed my face and was amazed at how soft and replenished it felt. My pores were clearly more refined and my skin smoother! I was surprised to notice such visible results and tried again a week later but this time with a higher quality honey and Whoa! I was stunned to see that on top of making my skin smoother, honey also made my skin tone a lot brighter and luminous, a result that latest for days.

So my tip is really to try and opt for a higher quality honey as the results will be even more spectacular!

alternative-906138_960_720

For sensitive skin

  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 1 teaspoon of aloe Vera gel

Mix the honey and aloe Vera and apply a thin layer on your face (avoid the eyes area of course!) Let dry for 10 to 20 minutes then rinse.

Aloe Vera will appease sensitive and irritated skin.

For dry skin

  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 1 teaspoon of avocado paste (just crush or blend a bit of avocado)
  • 1 teaspoon of plain yoghurt

Mix the honey, avocado and yogurt until you obtain a smooth paste. Apply on your face (avoid the eyes) and let dry for 20 minutes then rinse.

Avocado will hydrate your skin while the lactic acid present in the yogurt will refine your pores giving your skin a smoother look & feel.

For oily & combination skin

  • 2 teaspoons of honey
  • Half a teaspoon of nutmeg

Mix the honey and nutmeg and apply a thin layer on your face (avoid the eyes). Let dry for 20 minutes then rinse.

Honey and nutmeg have strong antibacterial properties that will help significantly with acne and inflammation.

For normal skin

  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 1 teaspoon of plain yoghurt

Mix the honey and yogurt until you obtain a smooth paste. Apply on your face (avoid the eyes) and let dry for 20 minutes then rinse.

The lactic acid present in the yogurt will refine your pores giving your skin a smoother look & feel.

You can also apply honey on its own and let dry for up to 30 minutes for a mask that will reduce inflammation, pimples and red marks and give your skin a boost.

For marked skin

  • 2 teaspoons of honey
  • Half a teaspoon of lemon juice

Mix the honey and lemon juice and apply a thin layer on your face (avoid the eyes). Let dry for 20 minutes then rinse.

Lemon juice will exfoliate your skin and whiten dark marks and old scars. You will need to apply the mask on regular basis (once a week for instance) to start noticing its whitening properties.

I hope you’ll enjoy your homemade facial mask (and saving money too!) and I look forward to your comments.

Until next time Frinnies!

Thanks for reading! Like or leave a comment below if you enjoyed reading this article and if you would like to share your own tips with us!

Top 5 Tips to turn your bathroom into a relaxing sanctuary!

Posted by Corine

I don’t know about you but I spend an awful lot of time in my bathroom… and I love it! Indeed my bathroom is the place dedicated to my well-being where I love to relax and take care of myself. To create that pleasant feel good atmosphere here is a short list of items and tips that every woman should seriously consider!

1. If you want to feel a million bucks after a pampering session in your bathroom, make sure to invest in a few fancy items! I know we do not all have the luxury to spend our hard-earned cash on expensive products but if you focus on buying items that last a while it is well worth the money. Get yourself or receive as a gift a fancy scented candle, body lotion or bath & shower oils, etc. You can use these products once a week for a pampering session on a lazy Sunday morning and I guarantee you that they will add a little extra to the entire experience and lift your mood as, let’s be honest, there is something really satisfactory in indulging in a bit of (affordable) luxury! If I had to pick one brand over another, I would definitely recommend Jo Malone. Their scented candles and bath & shower oils are out of this world and will turn your bathroom into a luxury spa in an instant! My all-time favourite is the Blackberry & Bay Bath Oil. The smell relaxes me as soon as I pour it into the water and it leaves my skin smooth and protected all day long. Pure relaxation! It is not cheap (£42 for 250ml) but it will last months if you only use it once a week. You can always go for a cheaper (but delightful) alternative by turning to the Sanctuary Spa range of products. I personally can’t live without their Gentle Polish Body Scrub (£5.50 for 200ml) – a good price that is most welcome in our household as it is a big favourite of my husband who uses it on a daily basis to scrub his armpits..

cosmetic-1798154__480

2. Proudly display your best beauty products on the shelves of your bathroom! I can assure you that it will make it look chic, cosy, very feminine and most importantly your own! Maybe it is just me but I love visiting friends and family and see their best products on display, it is fun and interesting to see what other people are using! Of course just look – don’t touch – and do not open their cupboards or drawers as it would be considered to be very rude! Another good reason to display your favourite beauty products is that it will make you use them! Indeed, how easy is it not to be bothered to use or forget about that body lotion you bought a few months ago? Well if it is here right in front of you, you are less likely to ignore it! Same goes for your perfumes, make sure to have them all out to please the eye! Also check-out Domu.co.uk, they do a really cute and convenient beauty caddy for £18.99 – the perfect item to keep your bathroom looking glam and tidy!

3. Now, have you ever seen a spa with mismatched towels made in synthetic fibres? No, I do not think so! Well there is a good reason for that, a lovely and good quality set of towels will make your bathroom look chic and tidy without effort. Most importantly, gentle materials like Egyptian cotton will be kinder on your skin and provide you with that lovely soothing feeling every time you get out of the bath/shower. Of course, the density of one’s towel is a matter of taste and there are many options out there in shops or online to please everyone. My go-to store is most definitely The White Company. They have beautiful high quality products offered at decent prices plus they seem to offer 30% online every other weekend! For more affordable options make sure to check Matalan or H&M Home. They both have fun and lovely designed products for the bathroom and always offer a “luxury” range at a very good price. Matalan has a cute Geo Patterned Bath Towel 100% cotton for £7. Also why not push the luxury to a crazy extent and grab yourself a matching bath mat? Every bathroom should have one and there is no better feeling than rubbing your feet on a brand new or freshly washed fluffy bath mat!

poo pourri 24. Make sure no one spoils the magical atmosphere by dropping some nasty odors in your sanctuary… I am looking at you husbands, partners, flatmates, guests with bad manners or yourself for that matter! Well let me introduce you to Poo~Pourri, the “before you go” toilet spray that virtually eliminates bathroom odours. I was a bit sceptical when I first heard about it but honestly it works wonder! Just spritz the bowl before you go, do what you have to do and the secret blend of essential oils magically trap the nastiness under the water surface and all you are left with is a delicate fruity scent. So wait no longer and grab yourself a bottle (it is also available on Amazon). They have many different scents and my favourites are Original Citrus (lemon + bergamot + lemongrass), Royal Flush (eucalyptus + spearmint) and Potty Potion (rosemary + tea tree + lavender). The packaging is very smart and pretty and looks super chic on top of your toilet. They also do fun gift sets and a miniature spray that fits just right in a handbag! Also make sure to check their ads on YouTube, they are refreshing and hilarious… just like their products!

5. Last but not least, the best advice to keep your bathroom a comforting and relaxing sanctuary is to keep it clean! There are now a tons of “green” bathroom cleaners on the market if you don’t like the effects harsh chemicals have on your health or simply care about the environment. I personally like the Ecover products which are very effective whilst having a minimum effect on the environment. They are also reasonably priced and available in large supermarkets across the UK. Check their website for their full range of products and leave a comment below if you know of a kick-ass eco bathroom cleaner! If you are still not convinced and want to save a few pounds why not make your own natural bathroom cleaner? There are a myriad of tutorials and recipes online to help you get started and the recurring ingredients are kitchen essentials like baking soda, white vinegar, salt and water.

Now, go and enjoy some well-deserved me time in that lovely bathroom of yours!

Make sure to leave a comment below if you enjoyed reading this article and if you would like to share your own tips and top products!

Our Beauty Spirit…

Fashion and Beauty are wonderful everyday tools and we absolutely adore talking about them! May you be a firm believer that “less is more” or a YouTube make-up tutorials addict, we hope you will enjoy reading about our tips, favourite products and best ways to achieve the most beautiful of looks…. self-confidence! 

Beauty comes in all shapes, sizes and colours so do not try to be a copycat and hide who you are or how you look like because beauty is subjective and a small aspect of life… let’s remind ourselves that there is so much more than looks in this big wide world! Indeed we much prefer to embrace who we are and hope our beauty and fashion weekly posts will inspire you to do the same.