The worst brow product award goes to…

Sorry Barry M but for once I will not be singing your praises.

After running out of my sleek pencil (this has been reviewed a while ago on my blog)  I thought I would change it up a little and try another brow product. I nipped into a small Boots and their range wasn’t massive so I came out with this little thing…

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(The Barry M Brow Pen in ‘Dark Brown’ not the daffodil) Packaging wise, yes this is really it. It looks just like a white board marker doesn’t it. And that it pretty much the consistency of the product to. As you can see the nib is a felt tip pen and although I knew that was what I would be working with on my brows I was not prepared for it drying up every few strokes. So there I was one eye brow done and desperately trying to wet the nib so I could at least finish my eyebrows. After this battle had commenced and I had won (Just!) my brows were left looking very ‘drawn on’ and although this is an effect I know some love, this just really does not suit my face and it is not a look I enjoy sporting. IMG_6620

The nib ment it was really difficult to do fine strokes to mimic hair and really all I could do with it was literally colour in my brows. What was worse was although I didn’t like the product I kept it on for the day just to see the lasting power it had. 3 hours in and I noticed the pen was starting to run and the skin round my brows was starting to become tinged brown. Needless to say I was not a happy bunny. You can see on the swatch below even after a few seconds on the skin the product had started to run.

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This product went straight in the bin and that is where it will be staying. Sorry Barry M!

Much love,

Joanna x

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Coconut oil – hair mask *****

So you may or may not have seen but I recently did a trial of coconut pulling (see previous post). Anyway, the outcome of that meant I had some coconut oil spare so looked up other tricks I could do with it. After reading a few recipes that are good using coconut oil i stumbled across using coconut oil as a hair mask. IMG_6554 So I have think damaged hair at the moment, it is quite long and has been for a while now so as I am sure you can understand or even sympathise the ends of my hair aren’t the best they could be. Now I am not at a stage where I am willing to chop it all off so have been purchasing strengthening shampoo and condition, using leave in conditioner and heat protective spray when I blow dry. Basically I am trying anything to save the lengths of my hair from looking dull and dead. So I thought why not try the hair mask trick. So I waited till my hair was three days un washed (usually what I go between washes). Like how i had with the oil pulling I spooned a table spoons worth of coconut oil into a pyrex glass and microwaved for a short time – just long enough to melt it to a completely liquid form. Then over the sink I dipped my fingers in and then just ran through the lengths of my hair till it was all in there. I would recommend you use the right amount of oil for your hair, so less oil for shorter thiner hair and more oil for longer thicker hair. I concentrated the oil on the lengths as opposed to the routes as I wanted to avoid excess grease the next day. Once it was all in I just put my hair up in a high bun and slept on it. (I did have to change the bed sheets the next day as the pillows got rather oily!) 3ab96b9cc2e117f2c53d94faa18e09ac But was it worth the oily pillow case?! YES YES YES! My goodness yes. I woke up, washed and conditioned my hair like I normally would and blow dried it. My hair has literally NEVER looked this shiny and healthy. It is honestly unbelievable what 12 hours with coconut oil on your hair can do to it. My hair is not greasy or oily in anyway, it somehow feels thicker and the shine is amazing. I am not one to overreact and give credit to something that is not worth it, but I can honestly say I will be doing this once as week now  (the day before I change the bedsheets!). Although coconut oil is expensive I will only be doing it once as week and think the jar will last. Some blogs I have read say to leave the mask on for a couple of hours but because I have had such a good result from the 12 hour trick I will be keeping this up.

Much love,

Joanna x

Oil pulling – ten day trial

I first heard about oil pulling when reading around the benefits of coconut oil, you know, that product that is everywhere these days!

I’ve recently become more aware of staining on the backs of my teeth and so was willing to try anything, and if the reviews I was reading were true this ancient practice was going to have all kinds of positive side effects. Including; overall improved oral health, whiter teeth and fresher breath. The oil can be any oil but I knew for a fact I the only one I could bare swirling around in my mouth for 20 minutes would be coconut oil as in my opinions is the best tasting oil out there.

The process…

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This is the oil I used, mainly because it was refined (which means no nasty extras! and all natural) it was also on offer in Tesco and with coconut being a pricy product I was all for saving some pennies. This is a 283ml jar and it was reduced to £5. I have had a look online and can’t seem to find it any cheaper ANYWHERE.

I’ve read in some places this process is best done on an empty stomach and others deny it makes a difference but for arguments sake I would do it on an empty stomach. Usually as soon as I got home from work, so having not eaten since lunch time.

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Spoon one healthy sized table spoon of the oil into a small Pyrex glass. You will not need anymore than this as over the 20 minutes of swirling around the oil will double in size in your mouth. Pop the glass in the microwave and heat just enough to melt the oil until it has returned to its liquid form. Only 20-30 seconds is necessary and you do not want to overheat it because you will be swirling it around in your mouth straight after.

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So this is the least glamorous part of oil pulling. I tried to do it when no one else was around so no one would try and talk to me or make me laugh! It is just a case at the point of sitting their with the TV on and just swirling it around your mouth, making sure you force it through the gaps in your teeth and just keeping it on the move for 20 minutes. You won’t want to be too forceful as 20 minutes is longer than you think and your jaw will start to ache.

Once the twenty minutes is up don’t put the oil down the drain! it is only going to clog it, so I pour it back into the glass, wait for it to set again and put it in the bin. I then floss like crazy, brush my teeth and rinse with water. You wont be able to feel the oil on your teeth after this you might just have a lingering taste of coconut, which isn’t such a bad thing! I then try and leave it as long as I can before eating. Drinking water (which is all I am drinking at the moment anyway) is absolutely fine.

The Review…

Overall yes I have noticed a small difference after just ten days, the stains and plaque on the back of my teeth are slowly but surely disappearing. My teeth are not sensitive like they can be after using unnatural teeth whitening products. However, my biggest issue was with the price. This is a very pricey method of oral healthcare and with having to do a session of pulling everyday to notice a difference it will not be something I keep up. I intend on buying one more jar (mainly because it is still on offer in Tesco!), using that up and then look at cheaper home remedies for whiter and healthier teeth. Not just the price but the process is a lot to think about, which regards to having to time your meals and think about when you can eat. It just really does not suit my lifestyle.

If you have any oil pulling stories please let me know, there are so many mixed reviews out there! it is really is a try it for yourself and see if it works for you process by looking around at everyone else’s experiences.

Love

Joanna x

Lush lip scrub review!

I have not heard much about this stuff anywhere, or heard much of any lip exfoliator/scrub for that matter. And in my opinion, the fact exfoliating lips is not talked about more is a travesty!

and here are 4 reasons why…

My lips are often dull after doing my foundation, even after wiping them –  I never find my lipstick goes on as well unless i have exfoliated before application. Lip stick is less flakey and generally sits a lot smoother and is longer lasting after exfoliating my lips.

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The blood flow makes my lips so much plumper – I can walk out confident without a lip tint or lipstick on. Exfolating makes my lips look so much brighter and healthier and I would be more than happy with o’natural lips as long as i have exfoliated them.

The lush lip exfoliator range tastes SO good! – I am currently using the bubblegum flavour from Lush, but I have previously used their popcorn and mint Julips (which is a minty chocolate scrub) and both I have LOVED scrubbing them all over my lips, if not just for the effect they have on my lips but also the taste they leave lingering. They really do taste like what is said on the little pot so I would recommend going for your favourite flavour. For me after trying three of the flavours my heart will always lie with bubblegum.IMG_6516

It takes off the dead skin you never even knew was there, revealing a much healthier looking lip – if you are anything like me you will rub your lips sat and work and find (without going into too much information) horrible flakey skin. Lip scrub completely stops this and as long as I don’t go more than three days without using my scrub the top layer of skin on my lips will remain a healthy pink.IMG_6514

So how and when do I apply it if you have not guessed already. I place a small amount as shown in the picture and rub vigorously all over my top and bottom lip after I have done my morning make up. I will then leave the scrub on while I brush my teeth and as you can guess this takes most of the left over scrub and dead skin cells off and then I will take a flannel and wipe the excess off and reveal the lovely plump pink lip I will be wearing that day.

So far the lush scrub is the only one I have any experience with but if anyone has any other scrub they think is worth trying please let me know. The scrub retails at £5.50 and in my opinion this is a little high but when the demand (I expect) is so high and the supply is lacking, Lush would be silly to make their scrub a steal. But, before I was introduced to this lush scrub I was making my own and I will do a post with a DIY lip scrub for you this week.

Much love,

Joanna x