I was made for sunshine so I’m not even thinking about Autumn yet. There is still some Summer to be had! With that in mind I thought I would share some of the Summer skin products I have been trying out from Holland and Barrett.
I have been using Ren’s Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser for the past month. The product, formerly known Jojoba Microbead Purifying Facial Polish, has been given 5 stars from testers time and time again. Of course, I had to see for myself.
Us skincare junkies can be a bit gung-ho when it comes to a face scrub. I once thought the rougher the better (haha). Well having been told by countless professionals that my skin is fine in texture, like anyone who has a celtic complexion, I have changed tactics. This is a non-abrasive 2 in 1 product;. firstly it cleanses the skin with exfoliating beads made from Jojoba Wax. The wax microbeads will gently lift and exfoliate dead skin cells and other pollutants. Secondly, the wax melts to indicate that the exfoliation phase is finished. The melted Jojoba Wax then deeply hydrates to firm and plump up the skin.
This is a great one for those with reactive skin. If you’re red, sensitive, acne-prone, have rosacea, this is worth a try. It doesn’t cause any irritation – not just for me, I searched through reviews to see if others disagreed, the general consensus is that this is fantastic for sensitive skin.
It contains Triglycerides from Jojoba Oil help add suppleness to the skin and Alpha Pinene from Juniper Oil and Menthone from Peppermint Oil, uplift and detox the skin.
I apply to my damp face and gently massage with circular movements while avoiding the eye area and then rinse it off with warm water.
This cleanser leaves my skin squeaky clean without feeling dry. After a few weeks of use my skin clarity has improved. There was no redness, no irritation and no breakouts. It actually cleared two spots I had pretty quickly. I should point out that this is not one of those products with rough particles that will slough off dead skin in one swipe. It is more about regular use and gradual but visible improvements.
The bottom line? This is a good all rounder but particularly good for sensitive skin. It also works wonders on congestion and black-heads, you can’t go wrong! It coats €22 / £15 from www.renskincare.com, from BeautyBoutique.ie or inhealth.ie and Sephora in the US.
The new tan from Karora, Express Bronzing Mousse, has a quick self-tan development time that allows you to decide how bronze you would like to be. US beauty editors recently referred to it as the “Versace of the tanning world”. With an endorsement like that I had to try it. Well that pic of the girl in their ad…wow, I would love that colour. I would also like that body but I fear it would cost me more than the price of a bottle of tan! :)
The velvety mousse is easy to apply with a tanning mitt and develops in an hour. Like all rapid tans you will get a better result the longer you leave it on but in one hour you will have a healthy glow. I like products like these since I detest the smell of fake-tan. This way I can rinse it off in rapid time and have the colour without 7 more hours of tan smelling skin. Leaving the product on for two hours gives you a hint more tint.
For a darker bronze it is recommended that you leave the mousse on for three hours. That was fine by me. I applied it in the evening time when I knew I was going out later on. I used a mitt to rub it in at 5pm, had my dinner, did my hair, makeup and chose my outfit. Then I rinsed the tan off at 8pm, applied some nicely scented moisturiser, got dressed and walked out the door and into a taxi by 8.30pm.
The tan is said to be custom colour so it suits your natural skin tone. It’s not orange, very important. If you have an Irish skin tone like me you will not look ridiculous this Autumn/Winter. The scent is quite delicate, nothing too over-powering. Like any tan worth it’s weight in gold it does have the usual dha smell whilst developing.
As far as application and developing time goes here are the recommendations:
1 hour: Light Tan
2 hours: Deeper tan
3 hours: Rich dark bronze
The tan also contains botanical extracts, aloe, acai berry, green tea, argan and bergamot oil to renew the skin and help improve your complexion.
The bottom line
I love it!! Sweet lamb of divine this is my new holy grail tan. It goes on better than any tan I have tried, pure luxury. Best of all you can’t possible mess up the application. It doesn’t dry too fast so you have time to blend with the mit. As I mentioned I left it on for three hours and showered it off and the colour was so beautiful! I couldn’t believe it. I had quite a few compliments on my tan too which is always good. I know you’re probably wondering how it lasts. Well for me it lasted 5-6 days before fading. I should point out that I shower twice a day and run regularly so I really put the tan to the test. I moisturise every day and exfoliate once a week so I didn’t change this step at all. Will I repurchase? 100% yes! I think my St Tropez Mousse affair may have finally come to an end.
In the interest of balance I’m trying to think of a downside. It’s definitely one of those tans that you apply at home and stay there until you wash it off. The tan developer needs to be fairly decent to product such a gorgeous colour in such a short time. Most tans need over-night application to get a tan this deep and well I just can’t stand the stink that long. You can also feel the product on your skin after application. For me that just means it’s rich which is necessary in a tan for those with any dry skin. Fast drying, tans tend to cling to me in the wrong sort of way. I’m re-applying this evening so I will start with an exfoliation, then apply, wear my shorts and tea-shirt around the house for 3 hours and rinse. Voila, done for another week.
A bottle costs €29.99 for 150ml. To me that’s a fairly decent price although I tend to compare all tan prices to my St Tropez Mousse which to me is splashing out. It’s available from Doc Morris, McCabes Sam McCauleys and pharmacies around Ireland. It is of course available worldwide.
Favourite tans at the moment?
I was very impressed with Dr Ceuticals Tone & Tan so I was delighted when a sample of their Hand De-Age Cream SPF15 arrived at my door. I always use hand cream but to be honest I never really think of SPF. I’ve always been more focused on keeping them soft but now that I’m getting on in years (hee hee) I should probably protect my hands from damage. After all, hands are a dead giveaway
I have made no secret of the fact that I love Xen-Tan. Their spray tan is the best I have tried and the lotion provides and amazing just-spent-a-week-at-the-beach-look, with zero tango-ness. They have recently launched a Luminous Gold Gel and Moroccan Tan which I was only too delighted to road test.