NEW IN – THE MANKIND GROOMING BOX ‘STRENGTH EDIT’

NEW IN – THE MANKIND GROOMING BOX ‘STRENGTH EDIT’

If your supplies from the last Mankind Grooming Box are starting to come to a end, don’t worry because Mankind are back yet again with another fantastic box this summer to keep your skin care routine on point. Every couple of months the team carefully curate a new box packed with a selection of products; some from brands you may have heard of before, others maybe less so. It is a great introduction to some quality new brands and you can really see they have thought about each product that is contained in the box.

Whats great about the Mankind Grooming boxes is that they don’t require a subscription. There’s also no surprises – you can also clearly see what you are getting on the product page before you buy which is probably why they sell out fast. The Strength Edit features £130 worth of products, all for £40 and as always, the handy box features 6 full-sized products to cover all basis. From everyday essentials such as toothpaste to more targeted products like the eye gel they really do have a bit of everything you need!

So what comes in the Strength Edit grooming box?

  • Hawkins & Brimble Elemi and Ginseng Body Wash (250ml)
  • ESPA Shave Mud (200ml)
  • Christophe Robin Cleansing and Thickening Paste Shampoo for Men (250ml)
  • Marvis Strong Toothpaste (85ml)
  • Aveda Pure-formance Grooming Clay (75ml)
  • Refinery Eye Gel (15ml)

The Mankind Grooming Box Strength EditThe Mankind Grooming Box Strength Edit

As you can see the box is packed full (literally) of full sized products. Although I have tried a couple of the items in the box before such as the Marvis toothpaste and The refinery Eye Gel, there are a number of brands I haven’t used in here, ever. Both ESPA and Christophe Robin are new to me and are the two products I’m most looking forward to using.

Although the ESPA Dual-Action Shave Mud is initially designed for use whilst shaving, I love the idea of it doubling up as a deep cleansing mask which they recommend using twice a week. The mix of ingredients sound so good too – a mixture of clays, shea butter and almond oil I can already tell my skin is going to love this product!

When I first opened up the box I thought the Christophe Robin product was a moisturiser so I was surprised to find out this huge tub is actually a tub of shampoo! Just like the ESPA Shavemud, the Christophe Robin Shampoo is a clay formula and is designed to leave the hair feeling healthy, thicker and stronger with continued use. Im not sure how it will stand the test of time in a shower environment but I’m looking forward to putting it to the test.

Would you like to see a review of any of these products? Let me know in the comments below. Have you tried any of the products in the latest grooming box? I’d love to hear what you thought!

The Mankind Grooming Box Strength Edit

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The Mankind Grooming Box – Strength Edit was gifted by Mankind.


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5 TIPS FOR SUMMER SKIN

5 TIPS FOR SUMMER SKIN

Whilst the weather in the UK might be unpredictable over summer, one thing that isn’t is the damage that the sun can do to your skin if you don’t take steps to avoid it. Follow these quick tips to keep your skin hydrated and healthy this summer season!

01. Keep hydrated. It might sound like a cliche but remember to drink lots of water during the hot weather. Our bodies are mostly made up of water so its no surprise that when we sweat excessively we start to feel dehydrated. When skin becomes dehydrated it produces more natural oils to make up for the lack of water. This can cause breakouts, irritation and an overall dull appearance. Drinking more water during the hot weather helps to maintain the balance of fluids in our body and prevent us from dehydrating. Drinking water also helps to cool the body and skin and flush out any  toxins.

For some instant hydration throughout the day try Kiehl’s Cactus Flower & Tibetan Ginseng Hydrating Mist.

02. Apply suncream. UV rays are harmful for your skin at anytime of the year and prolonged exposure to the sun can cause sun spots and the onset of premature ageing and wrinkles. During the summer are skin is exposed so much more to the elements so protecting your skin during the hot weather is vital to keep it at it’s best. Applying a suncream 15 minutes before you head out is essential and a minimum of SPF 30 is the recommended protection against the suns rays. If you do sweat excessively or are going to be swimming make sure you reapply as and when to top up your protection. If you are worried about putting a suncream on your face many brands these days offer your skincare favourites with the added dose of SPF needed.

If you are worried about the damage the sun can do to our skin but still want that summer glow you can always use fake tan which takes me onto my next point..

03. Fake it. If you don’t fancy lying out in the sun all day there are so many tanning products available on the highstreet. They take out all the effort and can give you that all over glow you are looking for. Not to mention, its so much safer for your skin. For me, I add a bit of the Tom Ford For Men Bronzing Gel into my daily moisturiser to get that instant sun kissed look.

04. Cleanse. After a day in the Sun your skin will be crying out for a bit of TLC. The build up of sweat, suncream and pollution sitting on your skin can cause irritation and breakouts so its really important to use a good face wash to remove these impurities. Switch it for a face scrub a couple of times a week to give you a deeper clean feeling and to remove any dead skin cells.

For a quick refresh during the day, try using the Anthony Glycolic Exfoliating and Resurfacing Wipes.

05. Moisturise.

After any sun exposure, give your skin a boost with a moisturiser or after sun to replace any moisture lost during the day.  Switch out the thick winter creams for a lightweight moisturiser. For sunburnt skin use products containing Aloe Vera to help heal and soothe the damage.

So there you have it. Whatever you are doing this summer make sure to look after your skin – it will thank you in the long term!

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THE MANKIND GROOMING BOX – EXPLORER EDIT

THE MANKIND GROOMING BOX – EXPLORER EDIT

In the run up to Father’s Day, the ultimate destination for male grooming, Mankind, sent me their latest grooming box to check out.

The Mankind Grooming Box – Explorer Edit is a male grooming box featuring 6 of the best grooming products carefully curated to form the basis of the ultimate grooming routine. The box contains everything from a toothpaste to a face mask and is a great introduction to the brands featured.

So, what’s in the box?

  • Elemis Deep Cleanse Facial Wash (150ml) – I’ve used this product before (see here). A gel cleanser that feels thick, luxurious and smells great. Most importantly it leaves your skin feeling refreshed and hydrated.
  • Omorovicza Refining Facial Polisher (100ml) – If you don’t know, Omorovicza are fast becoming one of my favourite brands. I’ve tried numerous products by the brand and have NEVER been disappointed. The brand is definitely a luxury purchase but the products always live up to the hype and the facial polisher is no different. A exfoliating treatment, the Facial Polisher leaves your face feeling healthy and bright.
  • Regenerate Enamel Science Toothpaste (75ml) – Unfortunately I don’t use toothpastes that contain sodium lauryl sulphate as these give me painful ulcers so I can’t comment on the product but I’m sure it’s great!
  • Men-Ü D-Tox Clay Face Mask (100ml) – If your skin is on the oily side this mask is for you. Designed to minimise excess oil and unwanted shine this clay mask is easy to apply and fast drying, drawing out your skins impurities whilst it does so. Once rinsed your face feels healthy, calm and firmer.
  • Anthony Skincare Shave Cream (90ml) – Anthony is another brand that never disappoints. Whilst I don’t wet shave, this shave cream is perfect for tidying up and shaping my stubble. It leaves your skin soft and irritation free. The peppermint oil and eucalyptus also gives off a pleasant natural scent whilst leaving your skin feeling cool and refreshed.
  • Korres Santorini Vine Shower Gel (250ml) – The first thing you notice about this product is how good it smells. A fresh, fruity scent that leaves your skin feeling hydrated and clean – what more could you want from a shower gel?

At just £40, the Mankind Grooming box is a steal, especially when you consider the Omorovicza Refining Facial Polisher retails at £65 alone and the amount of quality products in the box.

Have you tried any of products in the latest grooming box?

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The Mankind Grooming Box – Explorer Edit was gifted by Mankind.


OUAI HAIRCARE

OUAI HAIRCARE

“I created OUAI to bring a breath of fresh air to the haircare market”.

If you’ve never heard of Ouai before let me give you a brief introduction to the brand. Ouai Haircare is the brain child of celebrity hair stylist Jen Atkin, the woman responsible for taming the locks of numerous celebrities including Gwen Stefani, Gigi Hadid and most notably the Kardashians, appearing alongside the family in numerous episodes of the show.

The range consists of numerous products from the standard shampoo and conditions to styling products and hair treatments, but what makes them stand out from the rest? Ouai Haircare combines accessibility and luxury with nourishing ingredients and a fine fragrance…not to mention the Instagram worthy packaging and branding.

I recently picked up the Pomade and Wave Spray from the brand and thought I would see for myself what the fuss was about.

Matte Pomade – “A matte pomade that gives both long and short hair picky texture for the effortlessly cool look”

Hmm, matte? Really? I found this product to be quite greasy. I understand pomades are supposed to achieve a more slick look so I wondered how a matte pomade would work. I have quite dry hair so I don’t mind products that are a bit more on the slick side but I wouldn’t say this was a matte product at all. After I worked it into my hair I found that it did achieve the style I was going for but I wouldn’t say it was ‘effortless’. The hold is also what you would expect from a pomade but I’m not convinced how much texture this product could give you. The smell for me is overpowering. It’s not a bad smell, but after a while it did become a bit much. It’s not a bad product but I don’t think I will be switching from my everyday pomade just yet.

Wave Spray – “A weightless texture mist for effortlessly chic, undone hair.”

I’ve tried this a few times now – on wet hair, on dry hair, on clean hair and on unwashed hair but have had little results. As someone who has naturally wavy hair I expected it would form the curls and give a slight hold, however I have found little difference using this to if you leave wet hair to dry naturally. I’m quite disappointed as I have been looking for a good wave spray for a while, however this isn’t the one. Luckily I only bought the travel-sized spray. It’s not all bad news, it does smell nice and doesn’t leave your hair feeling greasy, sticky or dry. Has anyone had a different experience using this product? Let me know your tips for use in the comments below.

Whilst Ouai might be fast becoming a cult favourite, for me, the products failed to live up to the hype which is always disappointing. Sure, it looks nice, but that’s about it for me. Hopefully some of the other products in the range have better results and could change my mind!? Let me know your favourites below.

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THE ORDINARY SKINCARE

THE ORDINARY SKINCARE

Clinical Formulations with Integrity

The Ordinary, the Canadian-born skincare brand was one of the success stories of 2017.  Whether it’s because of their sell-out products and crazy wait times or the instagram-worthy no-frills packaging, chances are you will have come across The Ordinary skincare before.

The products are named simply enough after their key ingredients and features a whole range of products for all your skincare needs. Whilst it might seem daunting at first, you don’t need a chemistry degree to understand what’s inside – taking the time to research what products are suitable for yourself can deliver big results.

Here I am putting four products to the test:

  • AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution (30ml)
  • Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% (30ml)
  • Alpha Lipoic Acid 5% (30ml)
  • Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 (30ml)

IMG_4661

AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution (30ml)

This blood-red exfoliating peel, might look like something out of a horror movie on first application but is designed to fight visible blemishes for a brighter, clearer complexion.


IMG_4663

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% (30ml)

Niacinamide has be shown to have multiple benefits for the skin. Combined with Zinc this potent mix of ingredients is designed to visibly calm yet boost the skins appearance. Niacinamide improves the appearance of skin blemishes, enlarged pores, fine lines and improves moisture retention by strengthening the epidermal barrier whilst the Zinc heals damaged skin and encourages collagen production for healthy looking skin.


IMG_4659

Alpha Lipoic Acid 5% (30ml)

Like the Peeling Solution the Alpha Lipoic Acid Serum is designed for use a couple of times a week. The concentrated serum actively targets signs of ageing and lacklustre skin, working to improve the skins tone and texture leaving you with a softer, smoother skin with a overall more radiant appearance.


IMG_4664

Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 (30ml)

Unlike the other solutions, I have used Hyaluronic Acid before so know how good it can be. However compared to its £85 predecessor, will The Ordinary’s £6 counterpart live up to the hype.

Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 is a lightweight serum which works to rehydrate the skin. It contains 3 types of hyaluronic acid with vitamin b5 to retain moisture and heal dry and damaged skin.

Once you have matched the products to your skins needs, the next step is working them into your daily routine. It might seem overwhelming at first but Deciem are on hand with this handy regimen guide to help you build a routine. Here is how I have introduced  The Ordinary into my everyday life:

After cleansing –

AM

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% followed by a daily moisturiser

PM

Alpha Lipoic Acid 5% (2-3 times per week), AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution (1-2 times per week), followed by Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 and a daily moisturiser.

Over the past couple of weeks I have definitely seen an improvement in my skin. My skin feels smoother and tighter and in general just a lot more healthier. Before I started using The Ordinary my skin was going through a particularly bad stage; I had ingrowing hairs, pimples and redness which I have suffered with over the years. You would have thought at 30 my skin would have calmed down by now but nope, every so often it likes to wreak havoc. My favourite product would have to be the Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%. which I feel just keeps my skin under control after applying it every morning – it visibly helps to reduce irritation and redness! Overall I’m fairly impressed, especially for the price tag and hope to try some of the other offerings in the near future! The Ordinary have definitely filled the gap in the market for premium affordable skincare.

Have you used any products from The Ordinary? What are your favourites?

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