The Cleanse & Polish was one of the first products to launch with Liz Earle, it's the brand original with a unique formulation and trademarked two step process which helped push Liz Earle to the forefront of the botanical facial skincare industry.
 Beauty magazines and websites can't get enough of the Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser, which has an incredible 12 awards.
I was desperate to get my hands on this product, it's been labelled a 'miracle cleanser' and has over 500 glowing reviews on the company website. When Laura from Liz Earle PR dropped me an email offering the Hot Cloth Cleanser for my consideration, I jumped at the chance screaming 'yes yes yes'!

PRICE: 100ml Starter Kit (featured) RRP £13.75 including one cloth. The product is available in many sizes and bundles, as a tube or a pump, which can be found here.

AVAILABILITY: Liz Earle online and in store and selected John Lewis stores.

CLAIMS: 'Cleanses and gently exfoliates for smoother, clearer skin' - product packaging (pictured).

PRODUCT: Once again the packaging follows the classic Liz Earle pale green shade with inclusive zip bag for easy transportation and storage; continually similar packaging sets your Liz Earle routine products aside from everything else where ever you store the products. The pump is simple to use and dispenses the right amount of product for one full-face application, this is really helpful for making your Cleanse & Polish last a long time.
The product itself has an ultra creamy texture, never has something glided across my skin so effortlessly! The white creamy texture feels gentle on the skin and tingles slightly on contact, nothing unpleasant or uncomfortable but a noticeable sensation.
I use the cleanser by washing my face with warm water, gently massing the product over the face and wiping away with a warm soaked cloth; if I've got some extra time I lay the cloth over my face while the product is applied and enjoy the wonderful and relaxing floral scent. This is the 'cleanse and polish' routine which can be interpreted in many ways, I know Corrie likes to use hers in the shower! I like how adaptable this routine is for the customer, you can make it work for your lifestyle whether its busy and hectic or paced and quiet.
Once the product is washed away and my face is patted dry I can really see results, my skin looks fresh and bright with a super soft touch. Used daily this cleanser helps to maintain the soft-skin feeling and removes makeup (even waterproof mascara) in an instant. I wouldn't say the exfoliation is noticeable because I still had some dry areas after use, but the sole purpose of this product is to cleanse rather than exfoliate and the skin does feel significantly smoother.
The only downside to this product is that it brought my skin out in two or three spots after the first few uses, this didn't become an issue as on the fifth use the problem had reduced, though I have to say I'm a little disappointed that the product didn't help to clear my skin from the first use considering the claims. I therefore would not recommend this product for customers suffering from severe acne with sensitive skin.

RATING: 9/10 - The product is easy to use, smells delicious and fits well into a skincare routine but did bring my skin out in spots during the first few uses.

For more about the Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser, click here.
Something Special is a part of six 'cremeblend' blush shades by MAC, the formula is ultra creamy and blendable, you can build colour until you achieve the desired dewy finish.
In the pan this shade looks very bricky, it's far more pink when it touches the skin:
This creamy shade has become a must in my makeup bag, slap me on the wrist for photographing used makeup for swatches but I couldn't wait to take pictures before using this! The bright yet somewhat muted pink sits beautifully on pale or dark skin and gives a great pop to cheeks.

Something Special retails at £17.00 and can be bought from the MAC website here.

365 Days Of Makeup

27 September 2011
When browsing the internet I came across this rather interesting yet surreal short film which I thought I'd share with you all. Created by Dutch artists and directors - Lernet and Sander - and featuring beautiful Hannelore Knuts as the model, 365 days worth of makeup is applied in one single shot which took almost nine hours.
Layers upon layers of foundation, eyeshadow, lipstick and blush are continually applied to the models face to demonstrate just how much makeup we apply if we apply every day of the year. It's an interesting and eye opening watch, I couldn't believe my eyes!
Fear not, the model was fed and watered through a straw drawing filming, these bits were edited out of the final cut.

The video can be viewed here and is roughly 3 minutes long.

Liz Earle Skin Tonic Review

26 September 2011
My blog has become a little Liz obsessed lately, I just can't get enough of the stuff. Liz Earle do not test on animals, use high quality, natural ingredients and mineral sun filters which help to reflect rather than absorb harmful sun rays, slowing the ageing of the skin. All these features help create a fully natural and botanical skincare routine which helps to calm, soothe and protect the skin whilst providing the natural nourishment it needs.

Since reviewing the Deep Cleansing face mask and product packaging I've been using the toner morning and night to thoroughly test the claims.

PRICE: 200ml bottle retails at £12.25, also available as a spritzer for £12.50 and as a miniature for £5.

CLAIMS: 'This heavenly floral scented, non-drying toner refreshes, soothes and brightens your skin. Gentle and alcohol free, it also adds a layer of moisture.' - Liz Earle website

PRODUCT: Once again the product packaging remains true to the Liz Earle branding - pleasant to the eye and in the bathroom cabinet this basic packaging is always a winner. The screw-top provides effortless usage, eradicating the risk of losing the lid (which happens to clumsy little me all the time) and reducing the amount of plastic used in production, how environmentally friendly!
The formula itself is a clear liquid which pours easily onto a pad and sweeps across skin, only a small amount is needed to remove any residue or dirt on the skins surface. 
On contact with the skin I felt an immediate refreshing and cooling sensation, this pleasant sensation lasted throughout the time I was sweeping the pad over my face,  the gentle floral scent is so relaxing and immediately calmed me after a busy day, I'm certain it helped me to sleep better too. After only one use my skin was smooth and dirt-free without any redness in sight, a result which lasts until the face is washed. Many a time have I woken after toning my face the night before and the effect has worn off and my skin is oily and red...the Liz Earle Skin Tonic carried on working its magic throughout the night and I woke up with flawless skin. Having used this product in the morning and at night I have already noticed a significant difference in the texture of my skin, it is smoother, cleaner and far clearer than it was before I started using the product.

RATING: 10/10 - I can't fault this product, it smells deluxe, lasts ages, improves the appearance of skin immediately and adds moisture, leaving skin feeling soft and nourished. This is going to be my day to night toner now for the rest of my life, unless I run out of funds of course.
Liz Earle is a British brand launched in 1995 by co-founders Liz Earle and Kim Buckland. As the brand flourished Liz and Kim ventured into separate fields to benefit the brand; whilst Liz specialised in the use of Botanical ingredients, health and wellbeing Kim became involved in the manufacturing, marketing and retail of products. Equipped with these skills Liz and Kim nurtured their business which grew and grew over the years, launching their range with shopping channel QVC in 1996 and rapidly introducing new products.

You may have seen my post about my Liz Earle order a few days ago - no sooner had I opened the packages I began testing the products. Liz Earle has been a brand at the forefront of infamous 'hypes' in the world of beauty, with celebrities and customers praising the brands every move; I wanted to find out why. Having won a Best In Beauty 2011 Award from Woman&Home, the Deep Cleansing Mask felt like a good place to start.

PRICE: £13.25 starter kit (featured) includes 75ml tube and 2 x sponges (Purchase options here). Sponge refills and 15ml tubes are also available.

CLAIMS: "This highly concentrated clay and manuka honey mask helps draw out impurities and excess oil to leave skin balanced, calm and clear." - Liz Earle website

PRODUCT: The packaging is true to Liz Earle branding, a pale grey-green with clear, handy information about key ingredients and claims; a wonderful feature is the inclusive zip-bag which makes travelling and storing this product effortless.
The formula is easily dispensed through the tube, releasing a wonderful and subtle scent of clay and honey, which lingers throughout use.  As you can see from the swatch, the texture is extremely soft, gliding over the skin effortlessly allowing a little to go a long way for good coverage. Once applied, the mask is recommended to be left for 5-10 minutes to work its magic; I felt a slight tingling sensation during the first five minutes of application, it wasn't unpleasant or uncomfortable but it was noticeable - I think its nice to feel the product working! During the last 5 minutes the mask began to dry and tighten very slightly on my skin, again this wasn't uncomfortable or unpleasant but noticeable all the same.
The inclusive sponges remove the mask effortlessly with no fuss or mess, they gently removed the formula from my skin and revealed plump and refreshed results. I washed the sponges in warm water to remove any product and allowed them to dry naturally.
Any oiliness on my skin previous to mask application had disappeared, my skin was left soft and clear with no signs of redness or dark spots; the results impressed me greatly! This result didn't fade within an hour, my skin continued to remain oil-free and soft right through the day, the following morning my skin was still plump and soft. With repeated use of this mask (two to three times a week) my skin has remained healthy and clear.

Did you know? Manuka honey originates to New Zealand where the bees enjoy the bright white Manuka plant; although it has been claimed to have antibacterial properties scientific evidence suggests only 10% of Manuka honey possesses these properties.

RATING: 10/10 - This has quickly become my must-have face mask and I can't get enough of it. The honey themed packaging and sponges are a wonderful accompaniment to the pleasantly scented mask, whilst the formula itself lives up to all the claims and goes beyond my expectations. I will definitely be repurchasing this product again.

Please note: This product is not suitable for sensitive skin.
Neal and Wolf is described as the 'company brainchild of Neil Capstick'- a hairdresser with more than 20 years experience in the hair and product industry. Neil recognises that the relationship people have with hair is very personal and important, launching a range of ten hair products suitable for all hair types to create straightforward, beautiful styles in the salon and at home. Neil has created a range so simple that shopping is effortless; each product is designed for one specific use and can work harmoniously with the whole collection. To make ordering simple, the products have each been given an individual name so customers can immediately find what they're looking for; products can be bought from salons or on the Neal&Wolf website.
The products available are as follows:
  • Shampoo (Ritual)
  • Conditioner (Ritual)
  • Intensive Care (Harmony)
  • Heat protection (Guard)
  • Blow Dry Balm (Silk)
  • Sculpting Lotion (Form)
  • Volumising Lotion (Elevate)
  • Pliable Paste (Shape)
  • Shine Spray (Glow)
  • Hold Spray (Fix)

The prices range between £10-£12 and can be found here.

When I received my Glossybox and compared it to others, I was truly disappointed that I hadn't received the haircare products that so many others had received. When I voiced this on Twitter, Neal & Wolf kindly tweeted that they didn't want me to miss out and would have the products sent right away. I was sent the same products Glossybox users had received - the shine spray and the intensive care treatment; as soon as they arrived I washed my hair, applied the treatment and finished my style with the spray.
I've been seeing great things on blogs and twitter about these products, and for once I am following the trend - these products really are fantastic! Though I wouldn't exactly describe them as affordable at an average RRP of £11.95, if you have the money to spare on luxurious haircare you really do get what you pay for - the generous product sizes and salon-worthy results are (in my eyes) fully worth the expense.

After using the intensive treatment once I noticed a difference in both the texture and feel of my hair, it was silky soft and much easier to curl and straighten - my style also held a bit longer compared to no product at all. I would describe the scent as gentle floral talc, I prefer fruity scents when it boils down to haircare products so this is the only personal niggle I had with the product; as the scent isn't overpowering or long lasting it isn't something which bothered me so much.
To achieve these results I massaged a walnut sized amount into warm hair and allowed it to settle for 5 minutes.

Once my hair was dry and styled I spritzed the shine spray over the roots and ends of my hair, I only needed four or five short spritzes to cover my head of hair. What really impressed me about this product is how it added shine to my hair which had hairspray overkill and was initially looking a little dry. The results lasted for hours on end and my hair stayed glossy and in place all evening without feeling weighed down. Although I wouldn't name this product a handbag essential, it is definitely a useful accessory if you want to achieve super-glossy locks.

I would definitely repurchase from Neal&Wolf again because I know I'm ordering salon quality products which give the results they claim, though they may not be so affordable for a student such as myself. I've got my eye on the Silk Lotion and Elevate spray, best start saving!

To go to the Neal&Wolf website, click here.
Liz Earle has quickly become one of the most popular luxury skincare brands amongst the beauty blogging world. Offering high quality and desirable products, Liz Earle has gone from strength to strength since the brand launch in 1995. Following such grand success, Liz Earle has now launched a new 'Colour' range which recently landed on the shelves and web.
If you follow me on Twitter you may have seen my conversation with Liz's lovely twitter team about their products; I was lucky enough to be offered some products for consideration by Laura from PR, who sent me a Hot Cloth Cleanser and Skin Tint to try. To compliment the products I was being sent I bought the Skin Tonic and Deep Cleansing Face Mask to create a more complete skincare routine. Reviews will be available throughout the week so watch this space!

Both my parcels arrived today - believe me they were eagerly awaited having seen so many glowing reviews on Emma's blog - and I was instantly taken back by the care and effort that had been taken into packing the products, so much so that I'm blogging about it!
All orders arrive with an envelope containing the invoice and packing information, which makes the order feel extra personal and is really helpful if there's any product or packaging compliments or complaints. The products are carefully wrapped in tissue paper and sealed with a sticker, a really wonderful touch which adds to the pleasantness of making an order; if ordered as a gift the hard work would be done for you at no extra cost or request.
An information leaflet about new and old products and price list is also inclusive in the package, this is really helpful for quick referencing if you ever want to make a future order.
What was even more lovely was in my paid order I received a free sample of Hot Cloth Cleanser with a cloth to try with my products, surprise complimentary products really help to bring more excitement to the order I think.

I am so impressed with how carefully my products have been handled by Liz Earle, as a tester and a paying customer I received exactly the same standard of service, which in a word is fantastic. It's the little things such as tissue paper wrapping, hand written customer service notes and information leaflets which create an easy shopping experience in the comfort of my home and increase the likelihood of further future purchases.

To see the whole range of Liz Earle products, click here.

L'Oreal Mythic Hair Oil Review

19 September 2011
Mythic Oil follows the new trend of 'hair oils' claiming to smooth the hair, banish frizz and increase the softness of the hair without weighing it down. As oils can be extremely nourishing, it can also improve the appearance of split ends and damaged hair; hair oils are becoming increasingly popular as the all-in-one frizz and damage miracle.
As you may have seen, my Glossybox featured the brand new and full sized Mythic Oil by L'oreal. I was really excited about this as I've seen great reviews/media coverage and it's used in top salons nationwide. I ripped open the packaging and got testing over my next few hair washes.

PRICE: £11.99-£14.99 for 125ml depending on where it's purchased. Mythic Oil is available on Amazon, Gorgeousshop.co.uk, Feelunique.com and in salons; you generally won't find it in the high street!

CLAIMS: "Enriched with a special blend of avocado and grape seed oil, this lightweight oil cares and pampers all hair types. Nourishing even the finest hair, the formula leaves hair looking shiny, feeling nourished and supple."- L'Oreal website

PRODUCT: At first I had my reservations, the thought of putting oil into my hair is a scary thought as I can't stand greasy or oily hair. The product itself is attractive, theres something deluxe about the amber-gold bottle encased in a cardboard box; the pump surprised me a little as I thought the product may be a spray, but the pump is really useful for controlling how much product you use...and believe me you only use a tiny amount! 
It's hard to see from my swatch, but the formula isn't as oily as I thought it would be; it's very soft to the touch and slippery. I rub the product between my hands and then apply to dry or wet hair at the ends. I like applying this to wet hair most, it allows my ends to dry really soft and reduces frizz, not to mention smelling incredible; when applied before a blow dry I saw the most significant difference, my ends were super smoothed - frizz was no where to be seen and I hardly needed to use my heated stylers! If applied to dry hair you need to be careful not to over-do it or the hair can get very oily, if applied properly it smooths the hair nicely and finishes a style, retaining bounce and shine quite nicely. 
What I like the most about this product is it dramatically improved the appearance of my rather split ends, they felt soft rather than straw-like and flowed wonderfully with the rest of my hair. 

RATING: 10/10 - this product may not seem affordable at first but for the amount you use it is definitely worth it. It lives up to all claims made, the proof is noticeable before and after use! 
This product has quickly become something I couldn't live without, it smooths my hair and banishes frizz better than any other product I've ever used. My mum loves it so much she's asked me to get it for her birthday!

To read more about L'Oreal Mythic Oil click here.
Dead Sea Spa Magik are a brand which aim to bring the coveted spa experience directly to your bathroom, marketing easy to use products for recreating that relaxed, subdued spa feeling. They retail everything you could need, from shower gels to masks, from scrubs to heat wraps, they have all the spa essentials covered. 
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