I have been really happy with my skin lately. It has been relatively blemish free (although at the time of writing this I have two new friends on my chin who just appeared this morning to spite me) and I have noticed that it has a glow to it even when I have no products on my face at all. While I would love to tell you that I found The Ultimate skin care product to give you great skin, I mix up what I use so often that it would be hard to attribute it to one single product. Instead I have decided to share with you a few new (to me) skin care products that I have been using lately and what I have thought of them – the good, the bad and the downright disappointing.
No7 Beautiful Skin Hot Cloth Cleanser
In the lead up to Christmas, Boots brand No7 put a different one of their products on half price every day. I have only recently discovered hot cloth and balm cleansers despite them being popular for quite a while so the day this went on special I picked one up for both myself and my mother who is a huge No7 fan.
The brand claim that this has been created to provide tailored skin nutrition for healthy looking, bright and beautiful skin. They say the combination of the rich indulgent cleanser and the gentle exfoliating muslin cloth removes dead skin cells and daily grime whilst stimulating circulation, leaving skin clean, soft and radiant.
It is a thick enough white cream with a light pleasant scent that you work over your dry skin and then use the hot damp muslin cloth to remove. I would be lying if I claimed to use cleansers like this daily. Most of the time I am far too lazy to go to the bathroom to wash and pamper my skin. Instead I like cotton pads and creams and lotions I can use in the comfort of my own bedroom. However, when I feel like treating myself or sometimes before I hop into the shower, I love to use hot cloth cleansers. They do feel luxurious and like a real treat. (Seriously, I don’t get out much.)
You can work this over the skin easily and the slightly thick formula does feel rich and luxurious. After removing it with the muslin cloth, my skin feels clean and soft but not stripped or dry. It also does a good job of removing makeup (except heavy eye makeup – you will end up a panda!). I have been enjoying using this product but it doesn’t stand out to me as being groundbreaking and I probably would only repurchase it if it was on offer. A quick scan of the ingredients list reveals that it contains cocoa seed butter (presumably to moisturise) but aside from that, there aren’t too many other great ingredients. As I said the world of hot cloth cleansers is still new to me so at the moment I’m enjoying trialling different ones and am not ready for a committed relationship just yet.
You get 200ml of product in a handy pump dispenser for €14 and it is available exclusively at Boots. It may be worth holding off until Boots are giving out their No7 vouchers so you can get €6.50 off too. A nice product but not one to go screaming from the rooftops about.
Nivea Daily Essentials Sensitive Caring Micellar Water
Also in the genre of cleansers is this micellar water from Nivea. I am a big fan of micellar waters, especially since recently reverting to what I would refer to as the old school method of cleanser and toner. Compared to a toner, a micellar water just removes so much more and leaves skin feeling much better. Now at first, I thought all micellar waters were the same thing until I tried the infamous Bioderma Sensibio H20. I couldn’t deny that next to all my budget brands, the Bioderma just left my skin more nourished, hydrated and soft. However, when considering the price difference and ease of purchase, I ended up sticking to drugstore brands.
I was recently sent this new release from Nivea and I couldn’t believe how nice my skin felt afterwards. I will most definitely not be repurchasing the Bioderma version again because this is so close!
They are calling this a 3 in 1 as it cleanses and removes makeup while also moisturising the skin and that is exactly why it compares so closely to the Bioderma release. The brand claim it respects the skin’s natural balance, requires no rinsing and is free of perfume, colourants and parabens. Despite not suffering from sensitive skin myself, I do like using products aimed at sensitive skins because they generally contain less harsh ingredients and chemical nasties and when the product is this effective at taking off makeup too, it is a no brainer.
It’s RRP is €5.49 for 200ml although Boots stock it for €6.19 (it’s currently half price at €3.09!) and it is also on sale at Sam McCauleys for €4.00 – from €5.49. Fans of Bioderma’s micellar water seriously need to give this one a go!
REN Flash Rinse 1 Minute Facial
I had heard amazing things about REN skin care from a myriad of other Irish bloggers but the price tag always put me off buying from the brand. Could I really justify spending so much on a skin care product when I might not like it – or worse – it might not do anything for my skin at all? I read so many beauty reviews, pore over so many press releases and try so many products and often find them to have no effect on my skin whatsoever despite what the claims are so REN was a brand I always kept an eye on from afar but never tried out for myself. Then I got a sample size of their Flash Rinse 1 Minute Facial from Cloud10Beauty and my perception completely changed.
REN claim this a transforming treatment that instantly revitalises and visibly rejuvenates the skin. It is formulated with water-activated Vitamin C which is said to neutralise urban grey in a flash, leaving skin firm, toned and smoothed while reducing the signs of fatigue, photo-ageing and skin imperfections. They say skin instantly glows with renewed health and radiance.
It is a green gel with a strange jelly consistency and a strong orange odour. I wouldn’t be a fan of citrus fruit scents but this really drives home the Vitamin C message. To apply, you rub this on to dry skin in circular movements. Then you dampen your fingers and massage it into the skin to activate the Vitamin C. You leave it on for one minute and then rinse it off. As this is an exfoliant, you are only recommended to use it every three days.
I am obsessed with this product. As you activate the Vitamin C, it tingles slightly (not in a painful, burning way) and once you wash it off, I can honestly tell you that you can see an instant result in the appearance of your skin. My skin glows and looks the healthiest I have ever seen it. I have never used a product with instant results like this and now I know why everybody speaks so highly of the brand.
I am currently on a hardcore spending ban because my wedding is only five months away but if I wasn’t, I would think nothing of splashing out on the full size of this. Mine is only a 15ml sample size but the full size of 75ml also comes in a squeezy tube like this so you know you won’t waste any product either. You only need the smallest amount of product too (I should know! I’m currently trying to make my sample last as long as possible!) so it will last you a really long time. I don’t know if I’m selling this to you or myself…
Lush Cup o’ Coffee Face and Body Mask
I am not a Lush connoisseur and have only tried a few bits from them but I love the idea that their products are so natural so when I saw YouTuber and Instagram BABE Jamie Genevieve who I’m currently girl crushing on pretty hard talk about this face mask, I decided to give it a go.
Lush claim that this is an exfoliating mask with a coffee infusion to wake up, invigorate and stimulate the skin. It is made from roasted cocoa extract, vetivert and coriander oil and is said to smell like freshly brewed coffee. I adore the smell of coffee but I do not like the scent of this. It is very strong, overpowering and definitely not like pure coffee. It is coffee-like but the other aromas make the fragrance quite sickening to me. I have been attempting to overcome it but it is difficult when you’re sitting with it on your face for fifteen minutes. This is definitely one to sniff in store first if you’re thinking about purchasing it!
It goes on to your skin like a light brown gel full of ground coffee and it does look a little like you have a swamp on your face – although one reviewer on the UK Lush website simply called it a “cup o’ poop” which I found rather funny. After fifteen minutes, you rinse it off and you definitely get a good exfoliation with the coffee granules to boot. It is quite a messy one so I usually reserve it for just before I get in the shower and I have found the container to leak a little as well so for a time, many of my skin care product bottles stank of this coffee concoction! Afterwards my skin is clean and soft thanks to ingredients like glycerin. This product did not blow my mind and while I enjoy using it, I haven’t seen any life altering results on my skin. The scent means I will definitely not be repurchasing it.
It retails for around €8.50 euro for 150g (I can’t remember the exact price! Shame on me!) but it is £6.75 on the UK Lush website. This may be one for fans of natural exfoliators and those who aren’t troubled too much by scents.
Nip + Fab Skin No Needle Fix Serum
My final product is one I picked up purely based on the name and because it was on offer. I tried some of the Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix line before and wasn’t too impressed but because they receive so much hype, I decided to give this serum a go.
The brand claim that this serum is plumping and volumising for younger looking skin. It contains patented CellActive FORM (?) to plump the appearance of fine lines and OSILIFT (another ?) which acts as an instant tensor to blur imperfections and reduce the look of wrinkles. It also instantly hydrates with INDINYL CA which improves the appearance of the complexion with long lasting results for younger, plumper and firmer looking skin.
What stood out to me was how on the box it claimed that it instantly and visibly reduced the look of fine lines. I couldn’t understand how they were allowed to make such incredible claims so the day I bought it, I had to try it out the second I got home. I have quite a few fine lines on my forehead because I have always been very expressive with my eyebrows and also now I am officially in my late twenties (Aah!) so this is the area that I really concentrated on. I removed my makeup and applied the serum and – what do you know – my fine lines were instantly and visibly reduced!
Now I am not going to sit here and tell you that this is a product sent straight from the gods and that it will change every one of our lives and we will look like we all drank from the fountain of youth. The trick is in the OSILIFT – whatever that is – and how it claims to be an instant tensor. This definitely instantly tenses your skin to reduce the look of lines and I couldn’t believe it when I saw the results. However it is a short term magic trick. An impressive one but still a hoax all the same. I haven’t been using this for long enough to speak of any long term results but the tensing effect wears off so quickly that I find it hard to believe that this will have any lasting effect at all. I will obviously finish off the bottle just in case!
The serum itself is more a gel like formula (similar to the Glycolic Fix once, if you’re familiar with that.) and absorbs into the skin quickly. It has a light lemon scent – I think – and your skin feels incredible to the touch after use. While it isn’t drying, I always feel like I need to moisturise afterwards, it may be the tensing effect! It doesn’t burn, tingle or anything while it is working but my skin feels slightly tight.
If you want to see a gimmick in action or you’re incredible curious, give this a go but I can’t see myself falling head over heels for this one. You get 50ml in a handy pump dispenser which distributes the perfect amount of product for a full face for €24.95 from the Nip + Fab website with €22 delivery charge!!! (HAHAHAHA!) You can also get it from Boots for €26.95 (although I bought mine on offer so watch out for that) or €19.95 from Cloud10Beauty with €3 shipping.
Have you tried any of these products?
What was your most recent skin care buy?
Disclaimer: The Nivea Micellar Water was sent to me as a PR sample. I am under no obligation to mention it on my blog and it does not affect my opinion of the product in any way.
No affiliate links were used.