Thursday 30 September 2010

b·liv By Cellnique Skincare Review*

A little while ago I read a post on the lovely Phoebe's blog about her experiences with the b·liv by Cellnique skincare range, in the post she offered her readers the chance to contact the company to receive a free sample - I did so and instead of a sample sachet the company offered to send me a selection of their product to review. I have to admit it wasn't a brand I was familiar with. Popular in the USA and the Far East b.liv is part of the Cellnique's skincare portfolio. Using potent beauty salon  formulations b·liv was developed to be their range for younger skins which is designed to be quick, easy to use and risk free. The products from the b·liv range fall into 4 categories, the blackheads range, the large pores range, the blemish / acne range and the dry range. You can pick products out from each range to deal with you specific concerns and form a full routine so with my combination skin I was sent  4 products from the blackhead, large pore and dry ranges to try. I'm going to do this review a little bit differently to how I normally do them so I hope you'll bear with me. First of all I am going to do a quick review of the 3 main products I used, I am then going to do a full review of the mask I was sent and then finally I am going to talk about how the products have made my skin feel and any differences there may have been over the last 3 weeks or so I've been using them, hope I've made sense, so lets get started x

b·liv by Cellnique Squeaky Clean Beads Cleansing Gel

Part of the blackheads range, Squeaky Clean is b·liv's premier cleanser for most skin conditions but it's specifically designed to remove excess oil and impurities from the skin, making it ideal for me. A salon formulation it includes ingredients such as Green Tea a noted anti-oxident which is great for sensitive skins, Aloe Vera which is super gentle and an anti-inflammatory, and Peppermint extract for oil control and deep cleansing. The Peppermint extract is the one that dominates this wash it has a fabulous minty smell, that really refreshes you without been too strong or overpowering, The product itself comes in super useful pump action dispenser. It dispenses easily and a couple of pumps is ideal for your face and neck.

The wash itself is a green gel which contains tiny exfoliating beads, don't think that because it's an exfoliating wash that it's harsh, it certainly isn't! I used it twice a day pretty much every day for nearly a month , apart from when I was removing make up and I have to say it was very gentle. The beads are very small and smooth, and as you mix the wash with water, all you feel is a very gently scrubbing action, which you seems to be really cleansing and purifying your skin.

For such small beads I found that it rinsed away really easily leaving no traces on your skin. The skin was left feeling super soft, and dare I say it squeaky clean ;), not tight or dry, just soft, smooth and purified. Ideal for cleansing at anytime time of the day I would especially recommend this wash in the morning - the fresh, minty smell gave me a real get up and go as well as making my skin feeling clean, soft and mattified  Squeaky Clean Beads Cleansing Gel retails at around $25 for 130ml which should last easily last you a month or so.

b·liv Shrink and Tighten Large Pores Reducing Serum  

The second product I used in my b·liv routine was the Shrink and Tighten Large Pores Reducing Serum understandably from the large pores range. As I've mentioned many, many times on my blog, twitter, my You Tube etc. etc one of biggest problems with my skin is open and large pores, I really have probably tried everything now so I was delighted to receive this product, and get a chance to try something new.

Shrink and Tighten comes boxed and in a pump action dispenser, which I like, the product is kept clean and germ free. Designed to minimise the pores, calm the skin, and prevent future oil and breakouts, the serum contains ingredients such as Niacinamide, to control oil and to help tighten pores, Salicylic Acid, to exfoliateate and prevent oiliness and breakouts, and multivitamins and collagen to help with skin repair and skin texture.

The serum itself is quite runny in texture, with a slightly cloudy colour. It smells quite fresh and a tiny bit chemically. I used this after cleansing applying a few pumps in circular motion all over my face concentrating particularly on my t-zone and cheeks where more pores are at the worst. The serum has a cooling and ever so slightly tingly feeling on your face which was quite refreshing. It absorbed quickly and left a matte finish. I'll talk more about the overall effect of the whole regime on my skin later along with some close up pics, but I have to say I did notice a little bit of a difference with this, the pores certainly didn't disappear completely, but I didn't really expect them too, but they certainly appeared to be smaller and less obvious. I would definitely like to try this product alongside the rest of the large pore range to see what results using all the products together would bring. The Shrink and Tighten Large Pores Reducing Serum retails at around $49 for 30ml which would easily last you a month or so .

b·liv Quench Me Moisturising Gel

The last two products I was sent were from the dry range. Initially I was apprehensive as I really don't have dry skin but as you will see I had nothing to worry about . Quench Me is probably b·liv's most popular moisturiser. Designed to help your skin keep moisture locked in, again  this product comes boxed and in a pump action bottle.

Containing ingredients such as Squalane and Silk Protein to help retain moisture and repair the skin, and Bearberry which contains anti-oxidents, Quench Me has a light cream gel texture, pale blue in colour with a slightly sweet fresh smell, I used a few pumps onto my face and neck after using the Shrink and Tighten.

It spread easily onto the skin, and absorbed very quickly leaving the skin lightly moisturised and with a slightly matte finish. Since this product was from the dry range I immediately thought it was going to be too much for my combination / oily skin but I needn't have worried the texture was nice, and light and my skin was left comfortable and certainly not greasy after application, I don't think it would be enough for really dry skin but on mine it worked. Quench Me Moisturizing Gel retails at around $32 for 50ml.

I've given the suggested retail prices for the first 3 items but if you would like to try them all b·liv by Cellnique currently sell them in a kit called Large Pores for $87 a substantial saving on buying the products individually - there are also several other kits available containing combination sets of their best selling products

b·liv Leach Me Moisturizing Mask

The final product I was sent was the Leach Me Moisturizing Mask also from the dry range. Normally sold in a pack of 6 I was sent one mask. Designed to brighten and deeply moisturise the skin this is basically a sheet mask, a white fabric/ paper mask which is soaked in a serum containing fruit acids, and moisturising ingredients. The mask comes in a sachet, after cleansing my face I removed the mask from the sachet and the backing sheet, and applied it to my face, as you can see there are spaces, for your eyes, nose and mouth but you still look as though  you could be in Phantom of the Opera - cue spooky picture of me xx

The mask was very wet almost dripping in serum, so the best way to use it was to lie down. It felt very cooling and fresh on the skin, and I actually found the whole experience much more relaxing than say a clay mask. I left the mask on for probably more than the 30 minutes indicated, as there was still so much serum in it. After that time I peeled the sheet off and massaged the excess serum into my face and neck. The picture probably isn't that conclusive but my skin was left very refreshed and very smooth, and I would almost say glowing

This was my first experience of sheet masks and I have to say it was a positive one, I found the experience really relaxing, and my skin was left feeling refreshed and looking much brighter and clearer, and despite the mask being for dry skin, my skin was left glowing but not greasy or oily. My one slight issue was that the mask was probably too wet, in the sachet there was a lot of left over serum so I kept it applied it to my face both in the evening and on the next morning. If you want a proper pamper treatment try these you won't be disappointed. b·liv Leach Me Moisturizing Masks are available in a pack of 6 for $28.

Results and Reflections

I've used the first 3 products for over 3 weeks now and I've used the mask once and in that time I've came to a number of conclusions, and I've seen a number of changes in my skin. First of all pictures -


and After

OK I admit it the pictures don't really show any difference or at least no conclusive difference but in reality I think there have been some changes. First of all my pores, OK they are still visible but they definitely aren't as deep or dark looking. I also think that the texture of my skin in general has improved it feels a lot smoother, and it also appears to be less oily. I also found that the combination of the products made an ideal base for make up,  I didn't need to use a primer and my make stayed on much better, probably down to the super matte surface that the products created.All in all no miracles but good enough results for me  to be impressed.

If you are interested in checking out the b·live by Cellnique range please bear in mind that they are based outside of the UK hence the prices are in $, I know a few people had some issues with customs but I personally didn't have any problems. If you are interested in learning more about the products please check out their website . If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask x

*Press Sample

FOTD and A Play

I'm a roll second post of the day :) this one is a little face of the day for you I filmed a You Tube video so I had another play with my Naked palette :)

OK so I took some pics, filmed my video then I played with my camera and would you believe it I might have found `a way to take some eye pics where you can actually see the colour and texture of the shadows -  it's a work in progress but it's a start sorry it's a bit creasy but you can get a better idea of the colours x

Let me know what you think as I say it's a work in progress xx

Today I Wore

Rimmel Match Perfection Foundation - 100 Ivory
The Balm - Time Balm  -Light*
Boots No7 Trio Concealer - 2 lightest shades
Alva Coleur Organic Baked Foundation - Light (to set)*
Bourjois Coupe de Theatre 2 in1 Mascara - 51 Noir Exceptionnel
Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Eye Pencil - Whiskey
Urban Decay Eyeshadows - Virgin, Sidecar and Darkhorse (all from the Naked palette)
Boots No7 Lipstick - Nude Rebellion

(*provided for review purposes)

NOTD Milani Holographic With A Twist

Another nails of the day for you and again it's one you've seen before, again from the Milani 3D Holographic collection this is 512 Cyberspace, but with a twist. An amazing pale blue, holographic polish you can see it in it's original form here but last night I had a little play with it and added the Rimmel Matte Finish Mattifying Top Coat. Obviously you lose some of the sparkle and lustre but the matte adds a bit of depth and a mottled effect, I wasn't sure at first but it's growing on me x

Any questions pleasre let me know xx

Wednesday 29 September 2010

Animal Magic

Well over the last two days I've been concentrating on my holiday packing, and one of the items I popped in my case was an animal print tankini from Dorothy Perkins, if you've read Lollipop26's recent post on her animal print purchase, you will know animal print be it leopard, tiger, or zebra, appears to be back on trend again. Did it ever really go out though, yes I know the British soaps have tried their best to put us off the leopard spots, but you have to admit it, like it or loathe it it always appears to be on the catwalk and on the high street. I've purchased a fair bit over the years when I think about it some earrings,  heels and flats from Primark, tops from Next and Morgan, and a subtler versions in a dress from Wallis and a cardigan from Next. I admit it isn't something I would wear from head to foot but think it can be a great accent with a plain black outfit. I recently had a huge wardrobe clear out and I have to say I got rid of a few of my animal print pieces, I also made a plea not to buy any more cardigans I have so many it's untrue, but I received an email today featuring this beauty from Store Twenty One

I have to admit I am sorely tempted, the black and white makes it more subtle and easier to wear and it's only £12 -hmm it doesn't appear to be online yet but there is a Store Twenty One near me so I think I might need to have a look - whoops a daisy so much for my no more cardigans pledge

Tuesday 28 September 2010

Milani Nail Lacquer 3D Holographic - 510 3D - Redone

My name is Louise and I'm a secret magpie, and I love anything that twinkles and sparkles. I love sparkly jewellery, glittery clothing, and it goes without saying that I love glittery nail polish. As much as I love looking down and seeing my fingers and toes dance in the light, glittery polishes can be a bit of a pain to apply and to get off, and more often not they can feel a bit scratchy to the touch.

If scratchy and rough nails aren't to your taste, then maybe you need to try a holographic polish. With a holographic polish you get an amazing almost 3 dimensional  sparkle, that's smooth to the touch.

Holographic polishes used to be quite hard to get hold of but now they're everywhere and available at all different price points, one of my favourite brands though for holographic polishes has to be Milani. I have quite a few of Milani's 3D Holographic polishes now, and without exception they are all stunning.

This one is the catchily named 510 3D, and it's a beautiful gold holograph, shot through with tons of multi coloured and silver sparkles.

It took me three coats to achieve this effect but it's well worth those few extras moments of dry time, for the full on smooth and glossy, glittery look that you can achieve with this polish. Since it's still technically a glitter polish it wears really well but I'm not going to lie it is a bit of a pain to remove but for something that looks as good as this it's a small price to pay x

I'm not sure how easy it is to get your hands on this polish now but if you can find any of the Milani 3D Holographic polishes anywhere then snap them up without question x

Monday 27 September 2010

FOTD and Some Pics Of My Swap Goodies

Hey Ladies
I've got a super quick face of the day post for you :) I'm on the holiday countdown now so I'm trying to get a few things done including some new You Tube videos, one of which I recorded today :) Anyway my make up look today was a super quick one using a few new items, including some of the swap goodies I received from Michelle. The FOTD pics themselves aren't that great, the lighting today is awful, but I've included a few pics and swatches of some of the swap goodies from Michelle that I used today, which will hopefully show them better than my original post did - enjoy x

Today I Wore

Alva Coleur Organic Baked Foundation - Light *
NYC Blushable Creme Stick - Plaza Pink

Maybelline Eye Studio Quad - 60 Spirited Seas (shimmery cream and bronze only)

Bourjois Coup de Theatre 2 in 1 Mascara - 51 Noir Execeptionnel
Boots No 7 Lipstick - Nude Rebellion

(*Provided by My Pure for review purposes)

Saturday 25 September 2010

A Few Changes

Hey my loveys
I just thought I'd let you know about a few changes to my blog layout - as well as a few changes with font size, if you look under my header I've added a few new pages, a disclaimer about my blog policies, a new contact me section with links to all my other social media outlets, and drum roll a blog sale tab. Currently I have a few items left over items from my last sale but after my hols I promise I will add a few more bits for you x Any questions please let me know xx

Getting Ready For The Beach With Herbalife

A little while ago I was contacted by the lovely Lisa from Immediate PR offering me the chance to try some body care products from a company called Herbalife. To be honest I hadn't heard of the company before but the products sounded perfect for me in my quest to get beach ready. Herbalife are predominantly a nutrition company offering supplements to encourage health, energy and weight loss, so much so that they even sponsor several sports stars and sports teams such David Beckham's LA Galaxy and FC Barcelona. However recently they have branched out into the personal care market providing skincare and body care products to complement the rest of their business and designed to "provide good nutrition both inside and outside of the body". The two products I was sent were from the Body Contouring range I received the Body Buffing Scrub and the Body Contouring Creme. Designed as 2 step system to a more confident you - the first step in the routine is the body scrub

Herbalife Body Buffing Scrub
Containing moisturising ingredients such as Castor Oil and Jojoba oil, as well as Jojoba wax beads this scrub like the cream comes boxed and packaged in an iridescent cream squeezy tube with pink, purple and black lettering.
The scrub normally dispenses easily with one squeeze,however it does tend to get a little clogged with drying product in between uses, so I tended to rinse the nozzle after every use to stop it happening. The scrub itself has a fresh smell and is a milky opaque colour with tiny white buffing grains.
I used this on average 3-4 times in a week both in the bath and shower, I must be honest this isn't the strongest scrub in the world, it's mildly abrasive and even quite gentle on the skin although you do get a stronger scrub if you use it on dry skin. Never the less after use my skin certainly felt a lot softer alas though my usual problem with scrubs occurred with this one, little granules lurking in the bottom on the empty bath meaning a rinse with a shower hose is certainly in order

I would say if you like a gentle scrub or have sensitive skin this will be ideal for you, the grains are super gentle and smoothing on the skin, personally I prefer a bit more of a stronger scrub, if you know what I mean ;) The Herbalife Body Buffing Scrub retails at around £16.80 for 200ml.

Herbalife Contouring Creme
Packaged exactly the same as the buffing scrub, the Herbalife Body Contouring Creme is designed to be used after the scrub to "firm and contour" the body.
The majority of the ingredients are designed with skin firming, and repairing in mind, they include extracts of the Cola nut, Centella Asiatica and Caffeine which act as stimulants and as diuretics, and Ginkgo Biloba and Phospholipids which act as anti-oxidents, and play a role in cell repair.
The cream itself has a creamy, thick texture which dispenses easily from the squeezy tube. It's a pale blue/green in colour and has a similar fresh smell to the scrub, which is probably a little more synthetic. I applied this at least once a day to my problem areas and before you say anything this is for body use only lol ;) I applied it to my bum, thighs, tummy and my upper arms. It massaged easily into the skin and absorbed pretty well. It immediately felt tightening on the skin, and a tiny weeny bit cooling. Have I noticed any major difference with the firmness of my skin? well I have to say no I am not a great believer in the idea of cream shaping up your body  that's down to diet and exercise surely? but I have to say the texture of my skin has certainly improved through using this product it certainly feels smoother and looks a little brighter, so that's good enough for me - the one thing that I don't like about this product is the price which I think is a tiny bit steep. The Herbalife Body Contouring Creme retails at around £27.75 for 200ml.

All in all I think these products are pretty good and my skin is certainly a bit smoother after using them for the last 3 weeks or so and I certainly feel a bit more beach ready , so long as you don't expect miracles you won't be disappointed. These product were kindly provided by PR for review purposes, but this hasn't altered my review in anyway. If you are interested in learning more about Herbalife, these products or you interested in stockist information please check out the Herbalife website or call 08450560606. Any questions please let me know x

Thursday 23 September 2010

A Package From Canada

I said on Tuesday that I would try and make my next post a happy one - well it most certainly is - Yesterday I received a lovely swap parcel from the lovely Michelle from Lipstick Rules :)
Myself and Michelle have been sending packages backwards and forwards for nearly a year now and this was the latest thankfully it only took a few weeks unlike the last one which took 4 months lol
Anyways she was super generous and sent me a huge batch of goodies :)

First of all she sent a lovely card with the sweetest message in it - I really appreciated it so very sweet and some goodies including a Pecan Praline Bath treat which smells amazing, MAC Pigment in Partylicious, some Chanel samples, a Sephora lipgloss and some Go Smile Touch Up Smile Perfecting Ampules - I think these are for breath freshening,and tooth whitening - I can't wait to try them
She also sent me some Milani and Nyx goodies, and 2 NYC Blushable Creme Sticks in Plaza Pink and Big Apple Blush which I can't wait to play with, and a Face Atelier Shimmer Dust in I think Snake Eyes - OMG this looks amazing very like MAC Blue Brown pigment :)

She also got me some bits from Maybelline Eye Studio - we have some of this range but not in my opinion the best bits - I was lucky enough to get a gel eyeliner in Blackest Black and a brush, and two marbelized eyeshadow duos in 50 Tantalizing Teal and 80 Sinful Sinnamon, and a quad in 60 Spirited Seas

She was also kind enough to send my some more goodies from Canadian brands including Faded Violet nail polish by Joe Fresh, two eyeshadows also by Joe Fresh in Pale Pink and Chocolate, an Annabelle trio eyeshadow in Amazon, and an Annabelle small shader brush. She also sent me two items by Lise Watier - a brand I've been very interested in trying - she sent me an Eye Shine Pencil in Lime and a Hydra Shine Lip Stain in Peche which I can't wait to wear with a tan - it's fabulous peachy coral shade

I am so, so grateful to Michelle for sending me such fabulous goodiesxx If you haven't ever done a swap I would thoroughly recommend them, as well as getting some lovely new things you really make new cyber friends across the globe :)
Thanks Michelle you are an angel x If anyone would like any review or swatches on anything I've received please let me know xx

Tuesday 21 September 2010

Goods and Bads

I'm a bit late again this week I'm so sorry I am finding it hard to get motivated as the moment so apologies it's so negative again x


* Less than 2 weeks to my holiday :)
* My nails are growing :)
* Got my birthday present from one of my besties yesterday - she doesn't live near me anymore and her parents saw her for the first time since March at the weekend. It was a mixture of lovely thoughtful gifts for an ill person like me - a slanket, some fluffy socks and some slippers, some candles and a Gluten Free cookery book - so sweet of her - thank you Helen x


* Gained a pound this week :(
* Feel like death - so much pain, my joints feel like a mixture of jelly and lead and all I want to do is sleep :(

I promise I'll try and write something more cheerful tomorrow xx

Sunday 19 September 2010

A'kin Intensive Moisture Vitamin Hair Masque - A Review For My Pure

The last item from my August parcel from My Pure was a hair product - the A'kin Ginkgo & Jojoba Intensive Moisture Vitamin Masque. I know I've been reviewing a lot of hair products recently but hair products really are my weakness, ever since school I've mucked around with my hair, colour, heat tools and dare I say it perm solution, I do look after me hair but ever so often particularly after some colour it needs an extra boost, by using a product such as this.
As you'll probably know if you read my blog regularly A'kin is an Australian brand which prides itself on its use of organic ingredients, and the the lack of chemicals such as sulfates and parabens in all their products. This hair masque is typical of an A'kin product containing natural extracts of Jojoba, and Avocado for moisture, Ginkgo Biloba and White Tea for strength and health, and Geranium and Sandalwood for aroma and sensory pleasure
The hair mask comes packaged in a dark green squeezy tube. It squeezes out easily and has a thick creamy texture. It smells quite strongly but pleasantly of Geranium essential oil which does tend to linger on the hair.
To use the product I washed my hair as instructed and towel dried it before applying the mask to my hair. Despite it being quick thick it spread easily on my hair. I then stuck a shower cap on and then I had a bath, after about 20 minutes or so (you can leave it on overnight) I rinsed it out. It rinsed out really easily leaving my hair clean and without any tangles. After drying my hair felt super, super soft, my only complaint is it probably left my hair too soft and a little difficult to style, but this is just a minor complaint, this is a great mask that leaves the hair in fabulous condition, it is a real must for dry and thirsty hair. The A'kin Ginkgo & Jojoba Intensive Moisture Vitamin Masque retails at around £7.49 for 150ml from My Pure

(This product was provided by My Pure for review purposes - this hasn't altered my view in anyway)