Saturday, 26 March 2011

If it's good enough for Madonna...

If you’re a regular reader of my blog, then you’ll know I’m on the eternal quest to find ANYTHING that keeps my skin clear and have tried hundreds (probably not even an exaggeration!) of products to try and combat spots…so far, my must-haves that I am NEVER without are:

As well as using at-home care to clear my skin, I am lucky enough to be able to have regular facials due to working on a beauty magazine. I really feel that if you can afford to have a facial once a month,  then it’s so important, and if I’m not doing it though work then I pay for one to keep my skin as good as it can be. It just helps you really get to know your skin and keep tabs on it, and keeps it in optimum condition. 

Having facials so regularly means I kind of get used to them and they’re always great, but I think of them as maintenance really, so when I went along to try the Intraceuticals Rejuvenate Infusion facial, I wasn’t expecting anything different. Oh how wrong I was!!

 The facial itself is very different, using a ‘wand’ which produces pressurised oxygen to glide over the face, pushing the product applied deep into the skin with amazing results. My lovely therapist, Michelle Peck (Madonna’s facialist who calls on her and her Intraceuticals machine to travel with her when she tours), did half my face to show me the results, before the she did the rest. The half she did was incredible; me cheekbones were popping out, my eyes looked bigger and my skin was GLOWING, and that was immediately, imagine having it regularly to keep that up! I’d had a breakout that morning too and had a few nasty blemishes that had popped up, and although this was an anti-ageing facial, Michelle said I’d probably notice a difference the next day with them too. 

The science bit - shows the wand and the 'bubble' of oxyen
 I actually couldn’t believe it the next morning – my skin was clear!! And any pigmentation was practically gone too – I’ve never experienced that after a facial before, no wonder Michelle and Intraceuticals treat most of Hollywood! The results last 5 – 7 days, and these are expensive treatments which means it’s hard to keep them up regularly if you’re not an A-lister, but when Michelle does the celebs pre-Oscars (literally 20 minutes before they put their make-up on) and suggests having a treatment the morning of a big event (I’m going to try before my wedding later on in the year), or at least the day before to ensure glowing skin and an amazing bone-structure.

Secret Beauty Blogger Verdict: The treatment itself was lovely, really relaxing and the cool bubble of oxygen felt amazing on the skin – if you can experience this treatment yourself then you must – it’s unlike anything else out there and the results are incredible!

Monday, 14 March 2011

All about Avon

I've never had any huge opinions about Avon Cosmetics, having Reese Witherspoon as the face of it didn't really change the fact that I felt it was aimed at old ladies not wanting to leave their house to buy make-up if I'm honest! 

That was until I picked up the Avon Supershock Mascara (RRP £8, although when I went on the website just now it was on offer for £5) in a goody bag at an event. I'd just run out of my trusty everyday Maybelline Volum' Express Turbo so thought I'd give this a go until I got a new one...and it was FABULOUS! 

My one make-up staple is mascara, I've tried so many (see here) so am very critical, but I am an absolute convert now. It doesn't clog at all and is a lovely consistency, and it really does boost your lashes. I only really need one coat in the day but if you layer it gives an amazing effect and lasts: no smudging, flaking or clumping.  

Secret Beauty Blogger Verdict: Try this product if you can, I really wasn't expecting the results I got and will be buying this from now on!

Sunday, 13 March 2011

For the man in your life...

I asked Mr Secret Beauty Blogger to trial the TwinLuxe range of products for me as, although they can be used on female skin, the range is aimed at the male market with a high-end feel. I can’t say much more apart from I really love the packaging and smell…so over to him! 

Note: You may also be able to tell that I have trained him well and he now loves the male skin products; it might help that he gets them for free as I pass them on when we are sent them for male features in the magazine, but all the same, he knows the right routine!!!

Daily Detox Face Wash & Mask
Instant Energy Mist
Booster Serum

Daily Detox Face Wash & Mask (List price = $38)

Of the three products, this is the one that I have used most regularly, as I have been using it once in the morning as a face wash and once every evening as a mask. I have really noticed the difference, as my skin has been clear and on the whole (touch wood) spot free. To me, the sign of a good face wash is not only feeling like your skin is clean, but that it hasn’t been harshly dried out like so many high street brands tend to do. This wash really does manage to detox the skin and leave it feeling moisturised after use as well.

 The price of the wash is reasonable to say the least. Considering I have been using it morning and night, it has lasted me at least a couple of months and it is still going. This is always one of the most noticeable differences between high street products, and luxury brands. Although you pay more, they do last a lot longer and they leave your skin feeling so much nicer.

The mask is a really nice element of this product, as it works so quickly. All you have to do is moisten the face and apply a thin layer of the product and leave it to work its magic for just a few minutes. It is good enough to leave your skin feeling like you have had a face mask on for 15 minutes, perfect for anyone with limited time.

Booster Serum (List price = $76)

In the past my skin has been fairly prone to shaving rash, with my neck being the worst hit. This meant that I would try and avoid shaving on a daily basis in an attempt to avoid the inevitable irritation. This Booster Serum however has changed that and by using it both pre and post shave, I find that the shaving rash can be avoided, which is a revelation. The protective barrier it offers during the shave really does help the razor glide over the skin, rather than feeling a little battered and sore.

The one element that I would change with regards to this product is the packaging, it is just not that user friendly. You press the top down and the serum explodes like a little volcano. This wouldn’t be a problem if it worked upside down with the serum falling onto your palm, but it doesn’t and you end up having to wipe the serum from the top of the product and after a few months this ends up looking grotty.

Having said this, once you have overcome the packaging, the product works really well and anything that helps avoid shaving rash has to be worth the money.

Instant Energy Mist (List price = $26)

This is a strange product, as to be honest I wasn’t expecting a huge amount from it. I thought it would be more for show than having any real benefits for my skin, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that the soothing mist really does provide a refreshing boost to your skin.

This product has now become an integral element of my post shave regime. I use the energy mist after I have applied the booster serum and before my regular moisturiser. Often after shaving I find that my skin is in need of refreshing and the cooling effect of the mist helps to really relieve the skin.

One of the huge plus points of this product for me is the matt finish that it provides, as I prefer my moisturisers not to feel too greasy. When using this product on its own, often in the afternoons to give my skin a bit of a boost, the finish is such that I feel confident that my face doesn’t look shiny or greasy.