GLOSSIER FOR GUYS?

GLOSSIER FOR GUYS?

Over the past couple of years the concept of gender and gender identity has been at the forefront of discussion. Gender identity refers to our own experience with gender and can correlate to the gender we are assigned to at birth or can differ from it. Whilst gender isn’t something new, the conversations around the topic and increased awareness that everything isn’t just black and white is so important.

Whilst the boundaries between male and female are starting to become less definedwhy do so many companies still directly market there products to particular genders? Is there a real reason that certain skincare products are specifically targeted ‘For Men’?

The answer is yes. Male skin has some unique features and with regular shaving, is often treated differently too. Male skin is typically 20% thicker than females skin and has more pores. Men produce more sebum and is therefore the skin is more oilier then females. Shaving also removes the top layer of skin cells which can cause irritation and is much more sensitive to external influences.

Finding a skincare routine that works for you can take some time, especially as your skin changes with age.  For me I’m always on the look out for new products to put to the test, with Glossier being the latest.

Most people don’t need an introduction to the brand, however when you think of Glossier you immediately associate it with its attractive pink and white packaging. Whilst the brand might be marketed to a female audience, I wanted to see for myself what all the fuss about was this ‘hip’ brand so I purchased the daily skincare essentials Phase 1 Skincare Set and Moisturizing Moon Mask to try for myself.

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Phase 1 Skincare Set

The trio of products that make up this set are the Milky Jelly Cleanser (177ml), Priming Moisturiser (50ml) and Balm Dotcom (15ml) – an all purpose skin and lip balm. So are they really worth all the hype?

The first product I tried was the the Milky Jelly Cleanser and was pleasantly surprised with how gentle and hydrating the creamy formula is. Designed to be used on both wet or dry skin as a make up remover and a face wash, I was surprised how hydrated  and calm my skin felt after use. I guess this shouldn’t be a total surprise considering the formula contains five separate conditioning agents.

The gentle formula is paraben free, fragrance free and hypoallergenic, making it the perfect choice for someone who has quite sensitive skin like myself. Not only did it leave my skin feeling calm but also clean and fresh – what more could you want from a face wash?

Much like the cleanser the Priming Moisturiser was also quite a surprise. It does feel quite lightweight so would be something I would probably use more in the summer rather then the winter, however you can layer it as described. Once again, there’s no unnecessary ingredients or fragrances in here and it does exactly what it needs to do. The formula absorbs into your skin relatively fast and doesn’t feel sticky or greasy and your skin feels fresh and hydrated.

Finally, I chose the Birthday flavour Balm Dotcom not realising it was a shimmer balm. I guess that serves me right for impulse buying and not reading the description first. Needless to say I haven’t given this much thought – If anyone wants it let me know!?

At £35 I think the skincare set is quite reasonable and by buying as a set you also save yourself £8. However if you are on a tighter budget I would definitely purchase the Milky Jelly Cleanser as an introduction to the brand.

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Moisturising Moon Mask

Of of all the products tried, the Moon Mask is definitely the one I keep going back to again and again. Packed full of ingredients to hydrate, plump and brighten your skin, this mask is the perfect go to when your skin needs that extra bit of TLC. It does feel quite indulgent applying a generous layer of this already rich formula to my face, but 20 minutes later my skin feels so much healthier for it. I love how this leaves my skin after use especially when masks usually make my skin feel tight and dry.

Overall I quite like these Glossier products and their no-fuss, back to basics approach. They look good, do what they say and are genuinely quite good. What else is there to say?

Have you used any of the Glossier range? What are your thoughts?

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END OF SUMMER SKINCARE FAVOURITES

END OF SUMMER SKINCARE FAVOURITES

Now that summer is sadly coming to an end I thought I would do a round up of some of my favourite products I’ve been using this season.

With the colder days starting to creep in its time to switch up our skincare routine to adapt to the upcoming season. For me this means introducing products that can keep my skin hydrated against the harsh conditions winter can bring – my skin definitely needs an extra bit of TLC over the cooler months!

The past couple of months I’ve tried so many new products and brands, some with success, others not so much. My skin can be temperamental at times so I’m always on the lookout for new products that work for me to add to my line up.

So, what made the final cut this summer?

Ouai Matte Pomade – when I first tried this product I wasn’t really a fan. I had high expectations of the brand and they fell short. However after working with it for a bit I have found that I’m using this almost daily now. Whilst it may not be ‘matte’ it’s easy to use and gives just the right amount of hold.

Maison Margiela Replica ‘Jazz Club’ – I had been wanting this for some time so when I got it for my birthday I was over the moon. It’s long lasting and has a nice modern fragrance with hints of vanilla, rum and tobacco.

The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% – this is a real life saver when your having a bad skin day. I apply this every morning and fine it helps keep my skin under control. The active ingredients help to reduce redness and irritation and over time reduces the appearance of fine lines – something I’m a lot more conscious of after hitting 30!

Glossier Moon Mask – this super hydrating mask is one of my favourites. I had heard a lot of good things about glossier but was reluctant to try them at first. However this face mask does exactly what it says on the tub and is a must!

Anthony Facial Moisturiser – during the warmer months I go for lighter moisturisers to stop my skin becoming oily. This Anthony formula is perfect for during summer. It’s smells great, easily absorbed and gives me just the right amount of moisture I’m looking for.

Origins Active Charcoal Face Mask – another face mask, but another must! The active charcoal mask from Origins helps to visibly remove blackheads and reduce blemishes. I have used this a couple of times now and although slightly messy, my skin always feels so clean and healthy afterwards.

So there you have it, a quick round up of some of my favourite products I have been using this summer. Have you tried any of these? What has been your go to this summer?

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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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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)

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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.


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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.


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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.


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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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