PS Love to Glow Face Mask

I’ve got my daily skincare routine down. I am also (unapologetic boast coming up) really good at sticking to it every day without fail, even when extra tired or under the influence of a few gins (find my evening skin care routine video here). I am not very good, however, at regularly applying face masks. I love the Lush fresh face masks but am guilty of forgetting to use them before they expire. Then when you factor in my sensitive skin and preference not to spend a fortune on face masks, I haven’t actually tried that many. SO you can imagine my delight when I discovered the PS Love to Glow face mask, at only £3, was a hit!

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First things first, I have it on reliable authority that this is not a dupe for the famous Glam Glow masks. There was a fair bit of hype when the Primark skincare range launched including speculation that the mask could be a dupe. I haven’t tried Glam Glow myself, but I have read enough comparison reviews to be able to say with confidence that they are not very similar. That doesn’t mean this PS Love product isn’t a great one though.

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The packaging is pretty classy. The glass tub has some weight to it, giving it more of a luxury feel than the £3 price tag suggests. I would describe the scent as a little clinical and a little on the strong side for my preference, but not a deal breaker. The texture is clay-like without being too sticky and I find it easy to apply with an old make up brush.

I love how it immediately provides a cooling sensation on the skin, without being tingly or uncomfortable. After 10 minutes (the recommended time to leave in place) the colour definitely darkens and the product feels tighter on the face, but again without being at all uncomfortable.

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As it is removed, the mask has an exfoliating effect and leaves my skin feeling soft and looking brighter. I am really pleased with the effect this has had on my skin and I am yet to react to it despite there being some potentially inflammatory ingredients such as fragrance, but it seems to be far enough down the ingredients list for it not to be a problem for me. The ingredients that seem to ‘do it’ for me in this are Kaolin (clay), Shea butter and Argan oil. Now all I need to do it remember to use it!

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Ladival Sun Protection for Sensitive Skin

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Two days before my recent holiday to the Canary Islands I wandered into Boots for a few last minute purchases including sun protection. I’m no sun worshiper and having learnt the hard way (painful burns) and wised up to the dangers of sunbathing I now avoid it. Unless I’m swimming or involved in some kind of day time activity, you will find me in a shady spot reading a good book (or the occasional trashy novel!) instead. Having been blessed/cursed with fair, freckly skin that is prone to multiple dermatological complaints including eczema, dermatitis and keratosis pilaris, my choice of SPF has to be a careful one, especially as once the temperature soars you can add prickly heat to that list. I’ve previously written about my tried and tested tips for dealing with prickly heat (here) and my breakthrough in realising there are ingredients I should avoid when selecting sun protection (more details in the prickly heat post). This led me to Eucerin as my brand of choice last year but on this particular trip to Boots a different product caught my eye. Ladival not only ticked the boxes for ingredients but was cheaper and on offer. Having used it for two weeks, here are my thoughts including a comparison to the Eucerin products I fell in love with last year…

Like Eucerin the sun protection from Ladival contains no mineral oils or petrolatum (ingredients that trap heat under your skin making certain skin problems including prickly heat more likely to occur). Even better, it contains no perfume or fragrance (some of the Eucerin products do but it is the last ingredient on the list so the amount is negligible). This means the Ladival creams have what I would describe as a slightly clinical smell, although not unpleasant and very subtle. One of the ingredients is titanium, intended to reflect and filter harmful rays. This means the creams, especially the factor 50, tend to leave a ‘white cast’ on your skin which might be off putting to some, but I don’t mind adding reflective skin to my poolside look which otherwise consists of frizzy hair and uneven eyebrows!

The creams are easy to apply, the factor 30 more so than the 50 due to its lighter formula. Both factors need a good shake before use (which is recommended on the bottles) otherwise it tends to flake a bit but if properly mixed this didn’t occur. Once absorbed you don’t feel like you have anything on your skin, which could be a positive or negative attribute depending on your point of view, but I just use a systematic approach to make sure I didn’t miss any patches of skin. I applied this very liberally and didn’t suffer any break outs on the face or body, so it didn’t seem to clog my pores, although it’s worth noting I’m not typically prone to spots. One huge advantage the Ladival has is that I found it far less likely to stain clothes compared to the Eucerin products.

So the big question, what about prickly heat? I still developed it; I’ve never been to a climate warmer than the UK and escaped it completely. However it was far less widespread or severe, and settled down far quicker than previous trips abroad. Overall, I’m pleased as punch with both these brands and will use either for my ongoing sun protection at home or abroad – the best special offer is likely to swing it for me when I next need to stock up!

I bought the SPF 50 and SPF 30 in 200 ml bottles for £13.50 each, on a ‘buy one get one half price’ offer.

Do you have a favourite sun care brand for sensitive skin? I’d love to hear about it in the comments…

Why do I need a nipple balm?! Dr Lipp Review

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One of the best things about beauty blogging and vlogging is how infectious your passion for all things make up and skincare can be. Friends and family often seem excited to ask my opinion on a product or tell me about their discoveries. This happened recently when my Mother-in-law returned from a holiday with a gift for me in the form of Dr Lipp Original Nipple Balm; something I’d never seen nor heard of before. And let me tell you it’s an absolute beaut….

 
I know what you’re thinking; my nipples are fine as they are and don’t need their own beauty product thank you very much! But this is so much more than a nipple treatment. Yes, according to birchbox.co.uk (one of the sites it is stocked on), it was originally developed with breastfeeding mothers in mind but the beauty world has since realised it’s full potential and apparently Dr Lipp is a staple for many models and make up artists.

 
As for my opinion, I’ve now been using this for a couple of months and it is hands down the best lip balm I have ever used. Bold statement I know. The formula is thick, colourless (once applied) and odourless. It sinks into the lips and feels immediately nourishing rather than sitting on top of the lips and feeling more like a barrier (my personal pet hate with lip balms). The effects last pretty well too and it acts as a great primer for matte lipstick. I’ve also used it to keep my brows in place and soothe my sore nose during cold and flu season! I’ve now checked out the Dr Lipp website to find out 20 recommended uses, which I have listed below, and having perused these I’m interested to try the balm out as an eye gloss for that model-esque glossy lid look.

  1. Long lasting lip-gloss
  2. Cheek shine
  3. Eye gloss for dewy look
  4. Eyebrow shaping
  5. Lip primer
  6. As a mixer for pigments
  7. Perfect for ‘glitter lips’, eye glitter and diamantes
  8. Skin primer
  9. Smooth away fly away hair
  10. Gloss nails naturally
  11. Chapped lips
  12. Dry cuticles
  13. Dry skin patches
  14. Fine lines under eyes
  15. Split ends
  16. Eye lashes
  17. Itchy and sore skin
  18. Small cuts, burns & abraisons
  19. Sore noses from blowing
  20. Sore nipples from breast feeding

Any downsides? The price may put some people off; at around £12 for a travel size product (15 mls) it is definitely in the ‘high end’ category for a lip treatment. However, considering the multiple uses and that a little goes a long way I think it is well worth it and will definitely be repurchasing. I’ve also read some negative reviews from users stating it feels like a ‘glorified Vaseline’ but I disagree; colourless and odourless like petrolatum yes but far more nourishing. I find petrolatum actually dries my lips out but this does the opposite. It can be difficult to get out of the tube due to the thick nature of the formula but warming the tube up in your hands if it has been kept somewhere cold easily rectifies this. A final point of interest to some might be that the product is 100% medical grade lanolin, so to my knowledge is not vegan friendly (although this is an area I know little about so feel free to educate me in the comments!)

 
Overall? This is now my go to lip balm and I don’t leave home without it. In addition to Birchbox, you can also find Dr Lipp stocked at Space NK and Beauty Bay (where at time of writing Dr Lipp is on offer!)