Four best illuminating products

January 30th, 2015

Give your skin a luxurious sheen with these highlighting products.

Just because the weather is dull and dreary outside, it doesn’t mean your skin has to be too. In fact, according to next season’s beauty trends – an illuminated complexion is a must. If you’re finding it difficult to find your inner light, let these products do it for you.

(Note – it’s probably best not to use them all at once, there is a difference between having a glowing appearance and a sweaty one…)

Murad's White Brilliance Illuminating Night Moisture The moisturiser

To get luminous skin with little effort, look no further than Murad’s White Brilliance Illuminating Night Moisture (£69.50). The formula is packed full of skin-beautifying treats like vitamin C and shea butter. Simply apply before you go to bed and let it work its magic for a brighter complexion.

The primer

Primers are fantastic for helping make-up stay put, and if you get the right one it can add a subtle radiance to your face too. We love the Cover FX Illuminating Primer (£29), which smooths out imperfections and uses a mineral complex to bounce light off the skin.

The foundation

After a flawless finish with a hint of light? Try Pürminerals Liquid Veil 4-in-1 spray foundation (£20.80) from Marks & Spencer. Infused with liquid crystals and hydrating properties, this foundation will create dewy, youthful looking skin in a single spray.

The highlighter Mac's Mineralize Skinfinish in Lightscapade

If you’re trying to avoid layering too many creams or you simply want a more obvious looking sheen, reach for Mac’s Mineralize Skinfinish in Lightscapade (£23). Metallic powder particles sit perfectly on top of the skin to highlight cheekbones, under the eyebrows or anywhere you want a little shimmer.

If your skin is looking dull and unhappy, a professional facial may be in order. Find out more about facials and find a beautician near you to book an appointment.

View and comment on the original Express article.

Three natural skin care remedies

January 27th, 2015

Three natural skin care remediesLook to nature (and your fridge) to help problem skin with these DIY remedies.

It can be easy to get swept up in the media hype about certain wonder products that claim to sort your skin instantly – but what do you do when these products don’t help? If you’ve been overloading your skin with synthetic products and your skin is feeling sensitive, it may be time to look for a more natural remedy.

The following facial treatments are easy to do at home and may be just what your skin needs to rebalance.

For combination skin

If your skin is feeling tight and dry, but you’re still plagued with breakouts – this balancing mask is ideal for you. The grapefruit seed extract and basil are antibiotic and help to prevent and heal breakouts, while the natural fats in the coconut milk leave skin supple and moisturised. The orange juice and peel work as a brightener while giving skin a vitamin C boost.

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons of coconut milk
  • 1 orange (juice and peel)
  • 1/2 cup of basil
  • a few drops of grapefruit seed extract.

Method:

Blend all ingredients together in a blender and apply to your cleansed face. Let it work its magic for about 30 minutes before rinsing off. Leftover mixture can be stored in the fridge – this thickens up the mask and feels lovely and cooling when you next apply.

For dull skin

A simple ingredient to naturally brighten skin and reduce the appearance of scars is lemon juice. All you need to do is slice a lemon and rub the juice onto your face. Follow up with a moisturising mask for a real treat.

For oversized pores

An apple cider vinegar toner is great for reducing the size of pores while naturally balancing pH levels. Don’t be put off by the smell – the mixture will work instantly to even skin tone and boost vitality.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons of water.

Method:

Combine the ingredients together and use a cotton wool ball to apply to your face and neck. Avoid sensitive areas near the eyes.

Do you have any DIY facemasks you swear by? Let us know on Facebook, Twitter or Google +.

View and comment on the original Mind Body Green article.

Make bath time a ritual

January 23rd, 2015

Make bath time a ritualSoothe your body and mind with these relaxing bath products.

Author Sylvia Plath got it right when she said, “there must be quite a few things a hot bath won’t cure, but I don’t know many of them”. A long soak in a warm bath on a winter’s evening is nothing short of luxurious.

As well as creating the perfect moment for ‘me-time’, bathing in warm water is known for its healing properties as it soothes aching muscles. Even if you’re a shower fan day-to-day, schedule in one bath a week and turn it into a ritual with the following products:

Aveda Stress-Fix Soaking Salts (£31)

If you struggle to sleep at night, run yourself a bath with some salts containing relaxing scents such as lavender and vertiver. Aveda’s Stress-Fix Soaking Salts contain real lavender, helping to melt away stress and promote sleep.

Bodhi & Birch Rosemary Chi Himalayan Detox Salt Scrub (£35)

Containing unique mineral ions, Bodhi & Birch’s Detox scrub helps to equalise the body’s bioenergetic fields to induce a meditative sense of calm while effortlessly exfoliating the skin – bliss.

The Body Shop Honeymania Bathmelt (£8)

To truly recreate a spa experience at home, we recommend The Body Shop’s Honeymania Bathmelt. Lathering up into creamy, fragrant bubbles, this product will nourish the skin while relaxing the senses.

Burt’s Bees Therapeutic Bath Crystals (£10.99)

These bath salts from Burt’s Bees are perfect for a post-workout bath as they contain sea salt, helping to reduce built-up lactic acid. This helps your muscles recover faster and reduces that dull ache you get the next day.

Jo Malone Wild Fig & Cassis Bath Oil (£40)

For skin that has dried out in the cold winter weather, Jo Malone’s Wild Fig & Cassis Bath Oil is ideal. Containing rich avocado and almond oil, this product will hydrate the skin and protect it against the elements – and of course as it comes from Jo Malone, we know it will smell heavenly.

Philosophy’s Coconut Frosting Bubble Bath (£7)

Doubling as a shower gel and shampoo, this coconut scented bubble bath from Philosophy is the ultimate multitasker – perfect for those feeling the pinch after Christmas.

In need of some relaxation? Why not treat yourself to a massage? Find out more and find a beautician near you on our massage page.

View and comment on the original Psychologies article.

Protect your lips this winter

January 20th, 2015

Protect your lips this winterKeep lips kissable and soft with these simple hints and tips.

This week temperatures have really started to drop in the UK, and cold weather means one thing – dry skin. The skin on our lips is particularly susceptible as it has very few oil glands and can therefore get dry, sore and flakey easily.

To help you keep your lips hydrated and happy all winter, take a look at these easy tips:

Use a lip scrub

Scrubbing your lips a couple of times a week will help to remove dead, dry skin to avoid that dreaded flakey look. Make your own lip scrub with a pinch of granulated sugar mixed with olive oil.

Be careful of cleansers

The cleansers you use on your face may not be great for your lips – especially if they contain ingredients designed to regulate oil production such as benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. Coat your lips with a layer of protective lip balm before cleansing to avoid dry-out.

Keep a lip balm to hand

Keep one in your bag and another on your desk at work. Knowing you have a lip balm nearby will prompt you to use it more and will help to keep your lips supple and soft. Read our blog to find out our top five lip balms.

Protect from irritating foods

Spicy and salty foods can irritate the skin on your lips, making them sore and dry. Coat them in a non-flavoured lip balm before you eat to avoid this.

Cover up

When the wind picks up, cover your mouth with your scarf. Cold wind breaks down your skin’s protective barrier and can make it more prone to dryness, your scarf will provide a temporary barrier.

Change your lipstick

We know matte lipsticks are ‘in’ right now, but switching to creamier formulas will really help to boost moisture.

If your winter skin is in need of some TLC you may want to book yourself in for a facial. Use our advanced search feature to find a beautician near you.

View and comment on the original Women’s Health article.

Beauty trends for spring

January 16th, 2015

Beauty trends for springKeep reading for a sneak preview of next season’s key beauty trends.

Yes, we know it’s only January – but rather than get down about the grey skies and drizzle, we want to look ahead to spring. Luckily, so does the fashion world. Here we look at some of the top trends heading our way this spring, giving you plenty of time to try them out.

Bare-faced chic

For the first time ever, models walked the catwalk completely make-up free in the Marc Jacobs show. Sparking a new trend, barely there make-up is set to be big for spring/summer 15. The key to this look is letting your natural skin show, so brush up your skin care regime for a glowing complexion.

Purple passion

From pastel lilacs to deep grape, purple was seen at a variety of shows, including Derek Lam, Matthew Williamson and Sally Lapointe. Experiment with different shades or use amethyst hued eyeliner as a subtle nod to the trend.

The red lip returns

After a slew of lipstick-free looks in autumn, spring sees the red lip return. Ranging from bright orange colours to deeper berry hues, there are plenty of shades to suit all skin tones. Not normally a lipstick fan? Now is the time to experiment.

Graphic lines

Taking the cat-eye look to new heights, this season eyeliner starts from the middle of the eye and extends past the outer corners in a straight line. Play with some different colours and pair with a muted lip for a truly on-trend look.

Shine on

Illuminated skin was rife on the catwalk this season, so say goodbye to your powder and reach for your highlighter instead. As well as dewy skin, many designers added a glossy eyelid and glossy lips too; perspiration-like beads were even added to models faces at Teatum Jones, so don’t shy away from the light.

If your make-up technique could use some help, why not invest in make-up lessons? Find out more on our professional make-up page.

View and comment on the original Vogue article.

Beauty detox

January 13th, 2015

Detoxing your diet this January? Do the same for your beauty regime too.

During the Christmas period we tend to indulge – this usually means too much food, too much drink and too much partying. This can be bad news for our skin and hair as we’re left with a congested, dull complexion and product build-up in our scalp.

Luckily, there are plenty of products out there that can help us recover. So while you’re stocking up on fruit and veg and hitting the gym, give these products a go too.

Kératase Metamorph'Oil Prepartory Oil Balm Kératase Metamorph’Oil Prepartory Oil Balm (£22)

Great if you’ve overdone it on the hair products over Christmas, this pre-cleanse balm gently removes product build-up when used before shampooing. The oils in the formula purify and prime the scalp and follicles for a real deep clean.

Caudalie Polyphenol C15 Overnight Detox Oil (£29)

Gently regenerating and detoxing the skin, this dry oil works overnight to give the complexion a boost. This works especially well when your skin is in need of some TLC (i.e. after a few too many chocolates) but many love it so much it becomes a nightly essential.

Clarisonic Deep Pore Kit (£140)

A little on the expensive side, this kit is an investment for clearer skin. Thoroughly cleansing pores, this kit contains a daily pore cleanser, a deep pore decongesting clay mask and of course the Clarisonic Mia 2 brush.

Nourish Kale Enzymatic Exfoliating Cleanser (£16.50)Sanctuary Spa Ultimate Salt Scrub

While this is a cleanser, the multi-tasking formula works well as a mask too. Pomegranate enzymes gently exfoliate, while kale extract helps to boost suppleness.

Sanctuary Spa Ultimate Salt Scrub (£11.50)

Give your body some attention too with this moisturising salt scrub from Sanctuary. Use this in the bath after your workout to help soothe tight muscles.

Why not treat yourself to a detoxing treatment? Browse our treatment section to see what’s available, then use our search tool to find a beautician near you.

View and comment on the original Express article.

Keep your skin clear while working out

January 9th, 2015

Keep your skin clear while working outHitting the gym hard? Read this to ensure your skin stays clear and healthy.

Is one of your New Year’s resolutions to work out more? It goes without saying that working up a sweat is great for your health, but all that sweat can cause havoc for your skin. Sweat contains bacteria, and if this is left on the skin it can clog pores and lead to blemishes.

Take a look at the following tips to ensure your skin stays clear:

Before your workout

Removing your make-up before you exercise is really important, no matter how cute your personal trainer is. If you leave your make-up on it will combine with the sweat to block pores and cause both irritation and blemishes. Ideally you should take the time to remove make-up properly with a wash-off cleanser, but if you’re pushed for time just pack some antibacterial face wipes in your gym bag so you can cleanse on the go.

During your workout

On average we touch our faces every minute, transferring bacteria as we go. When we’re at the gym, we tend to touch our faces even more – and we may even be transferring other people’s sweat and bacteria to our faces too (yuck). To avoid this, make sure you carry a clean towel around with you to wipe down machines and mop your brow. Carrying hand-sanitising gel can also be a good idea when using communal equipment such as boxing gloves.

After your workout

Jumping in the shower and giving your face and body a good wash with an antibacterial cleanser will help keep blemishes at bay. If you don’t have time for a shower, use some wipes containing salicylic acid. This will remove any debris lurking in your pores that would otherwise cause spots. Remember to use this on your chest and back too, as these are the areas where sweat tends to collect.

Fancy a facial to give your complexion a boost? Use our advanced search to find a beautician near you.

View and comment on the original Women’s Health article.

Five New Year beauty resolutions

January 6th, 2015

Five New Year's beauty resolutionsFind out which beauty resolutions you should be making in 2015.

For many of us, the New Year signals a fresh start and is the perfect time to come up with some resolutions for the year ahead. You probably have all the usual resolutions down (eat healthier, exercise more, spend less time on Candy Crush Saga), but have you thought about your beauty resolutions?

Now is a great time to reassess your routine and shake it up a little. Take a look at the following five suggestions:

1. Use SPF every day

Protecting your skin from the sun (yes, even here in England) is perhaps the best thing you can do for your skin. Not only will your skin look better, you’ll also reduce your risk of skin cancer. Rather than worrying about adding another step to your skin care routine, simply swap your usual moisturiser for one that contains SPF.

2. Be brave with your make-up

It is all too easy to fall into a make-up rut, so why not change things up? Make a resolution to be braver – try that lip colour you think you can’t pull off, wear different nail colours and experiment with coloured eyeliners. Small changes like this can do wonders for your confidence.

3. Exfoliate once a week

Exfoliating helps to even out your skin texture, fights the signs of ageing and even prevents breakouts. Aim to exfoliate once a week in the evening. Skin goes into renewal mode over night, so this is the perfect time to slough off dead skin.

4. Update your night-time skin care routine

Check your night creams are working with the way your skin is behaving now – what used to be perfect for your skin may no longer be right. There are plenty of night creams on the market, if you’re unsure take some time to read reviews online or consult a dermatologist.

5. Take up body brushing

Dry body brushing helps to stimulate the lymphatic system, increases your blood circulation and even helps to tackle cellulite. Try to get in the habit of spending just three minutes every morning dry body brushing before you shower and follow up with body oil after.

If your skin is in need of professional help after the indulgence of Christmas, use our advanced search to find a dermatologist near you.

View and comment on the original Express article.

The most Googled beauty questions of 2014

January 2nd, 2015

The most Googled beauty questions on 2014We answer the most asked beauty questions last year.

Where would we be without Google? Providing instant answers with a single click of a button, it’s no wonder we go to the Internet with our beauty woes.

Apparently – we’re not alone, we found the following list of the most Googled beauty questions of 2014 over at Red magazine and thought we’d answer them for you:

1. How do I get rid of my acne?

There are several things you can try to help clear acne, including dietary changes, lowering your stress levels and avoiding unnecessarily harsh products. Read our blog about clearing skin naturally and consult a dermatologist for professional advice.

2. How do I get rid of stretch marks?

While sadly stretch marks tend to stay with us forever, there are ways you can reduce their appearance. Improving your circulation through massage, exfoliating the skin and moisturising affected areas can all help the process. Read more about reducing stretch marks.

3. How often should I wash my hair?

This will depend on your hair type and how often you touch/style your hair. Ideally you should wash it enough to keep it clean, healthy and to reduce product build up, but not so much that you’re stripping the hair of its natural oils. Read more tips for healthy hair.

4. What is BB cream?

BB stands for ‘blemish balm’ and is hailed as an all-in-one skin care product. Working as a primer, foundation, concealer and moisturiser all in one, BB creams were all the rage last year. Find out more about BB creams and CC creams.

5. How can I get rid of under-eye bags?

Under-eye bags are a common problem and in many cases are hereditary. Having said this, there are ways you can reduce them – avoiding salty food, getting enough sleep and using products designed to reduce puffiness is a great start. Find out more about reducing puffy eyes.

6. How can I minimise my pores?

Large pores are typically caused by excess sebum, stress or pollution. Luckily there are plenty of products out there to help refine pores, take a look at our top six pore minimisers.

7. How do I apply foundation?

There are a few options when it comes to applying foundation – you could use your fingers, a sponge or a dedicated make-up brush. Everyone has a personal preference and each tool offers different results. Read our back to basics blog on foundation for more tips.

8. How do I shape my eyebrows?

Going to a professional will ensure you get the brow shape you want; you can then maintain the shape at home. Deciding which shape to go for will depend on your face shape – to find out what shape would suit you, read our guide to the perfect brows.

What beauty questions have you Googled? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter.

Five of the best lip balms

December 26th, 2014

Keep your lips kissable and soft this winter.

Cold weather is well known for making our skin drier than normal, and this includes our lips. Wind and biting temperatures tend to ravage our lips this time of year, leaving them chapped, flaky and sore – not a good look.

To help keep them smooth and nourished you’ll need a hydrating lip balm. Below we list a few firm favourites, catering to all budgets.

Vaseline Lip TVaselineherapy Tin, Cocoa Butter (£2.18)

Your favourite cheap and cheerful lip balm with a hint of cocoa butter to help condition your lips even more.

Burt’s Bees Pink Grapefruit Lip Balm (£3.69)

A cult classic, all of Burt’s Bees lip balms are well revered but this flavour complete with punchy grapefruit seed oil is our favourite.

Lucas’ Papaw Ointment (£13.75)

The celebrity pick (Jessie J and Holly Willoughby are reported to be fans), Papaw Ointment contains fermented pawpaw and can be used to heal minor burns, cuts and sunburn.

Clarins HydraQuench Moisture Replenishing Lip Balm (£18)

This balm contains shea butter and rose wax, giving your lips a lovely hint of pink.

Crème de la Mer The Lip Balm (£42)

One of the more luxurious lip balms out there, the Crème de la Mer lip balm is also one of the more effective. Just a light coating will keep lips soft for hours.

Do you have a favourite lip balm we haven’t mentioned? Give us a tweet and let us know.

View and comment on the original Glamour article.