Sand & Sky Porefining Face Mask

You may have heard of cult skincare brand, Sand & Sky. I’ve seen many Facebook/Insta ads and many influencers have jumped on the bandwagon.

In the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales, Sand & Sky were offering 20% meaning that the Porefining Face Mask was only £33.52.

After a quick search on their FAQ, I was able to find that the Porefining Face Mask was vegan and did not contain any animal products or animal by-products. The brush applicator is also synthetic and not made of animal hair. Click here for the FAQ details.

My order was dispatched and arrived within a few days!

Branding and packaging were very appealing! The applicator brush is so cute and so useful. It made it so much easier to apply on my skin. The mask did tingle as I applied it but it stopped very shortly after. I looked online and apparently this is normal…

I managed to rope Tom into trying the mask with me too!

After 10 minutes, the mask was mostly dry with a few patches of thicker not quite dry yet. I went upstairs to wash off the mask with warm water. My skin felt so clean afterwards, it did however feel very dry and tight.

Tom has a very different skin type to me and the reaction to the mask wasn’t as good as mine. His skin got much tighter and drier than mine and it didn’t help that he didn’t moisturise.

I followed the mask with my facial oils to help hydrate my skin and it made all the difference. You can read about the oils I’m using in my blog post last week here. I do feel like my pores have been reduced and my skin is just much cleaner in general.

It’s recommended that for oily skin, you should use the mask 2 – 3 times a week. I’ll try to do this to see how much of an improvement it’ll make.

Based on this first try of the mask, I do like it, however I’m not sure if I would buy it again. It’s quite a high price point for such a small pot and unless it suddenly does wonders for my skin, I’ll probably stick to Natura sheet masks!

November Skincare Favourites

Winter is the season for chapped lips and can aggravate skin. Here have been my November saviours that have become a staple in my evening skin routine.

Facial Oils

There’s a lot of stigma around facial oils and what they do for you. It’s a topic that you’d need to research for your skin type as everyone is different.

For me, I am loving them as part of my night time routine. Here are my 2 picks.

The Ordinary Retinol 0.5% in Squalene

I actually bought this oil a long time ago and it became disused when I got out of my skin routine and it was hidden in a drawer for a few months.

I’ve picked it back up again and apply a few drops and apply all over my face. There’s no fragrance but it does leave my skin feeling very soft.

Retinol is renowned for keeping wrinkles at bay by encouraging cell regeneration. I may only be 28 but it’s better to start early!

All I know, is that my skin is left silky smooth and even Tom has commented on the improvement of my frown wrinkle that he’s given me!

If you’re thinking about picking this up, make sure you start off with the lowest percentage of retinol to allow your skin to become accustomed to it. You eventually work your way to the higher percentages when your skin needs it.

Dr Botanicals Moroccan Rose Superfood Facial Oil

I’ve had this oil for a while too as it came in a beauty box that I received a long time ago.

Rosehip oil supposedly reduces skins natural oiliness (which I am a terrible sufferer of) and helps to even out skin tone.

The jury’s out on both at the moment as I haven’t noticed much difference but it does smell really lovely and the tiny difference I’ve seen is encouraging.

BAO Skincare NOURISH URSELF Treatment Balm

Again, this beauty secret was in one of the delightful beauty boxes that I’ve received from The Cruelty Free Beauty Box.

This balm is multi-purpose and can be used for so many different things, but I’ve been using it as a night time lip balm.

It’s done absolute wonders for my usually chapped winter lips. My lips feel soft and they’re not as dry as they normally would be. I do, of course, still have to apply lip balm during the day, but I no longer have to do a lip scrub every evening to do away with the dead skin cells.

I absolutely recommend this product. It will become a staple in your beauty routine.

Men’s Vegan Grooming Gifts

As a woman, it can be difficult trying to find good gift sets for men. The market is definitely catered more for women than it is for men. I did a spot of shopping a few weeks ago and was inspired to write this post based on what I saw!

Here’s just a few recommend brands and products and if I come up with some more ideas, I’ll make sure I write another post.

Superdrug

So when I was wandering around my local Superdrug the other day, I was enticed by their Christmas section and also pleasantly surprised. I found a few of their own brand men’s gift sets which were lovely and also very reasonably priced!

If you’re unsure what to buy for someone, a gift set like this is a great alternative as they usually contain useful things that they are likely to use.

What’s also great about Superdrug is that their items are clearly labelled vegan which makes it much easier to shop.

Browsing online with Superdrug has also become so much easier as they have a vegan Christmas section which you can find here!

Manmane

Manmane are a completely vegan brand that sells male grooming products. We’ve seen them at vegan events around the country before, and being welsh myself, it’s nice to support local business!

Tom loves their products. They’re high quality and there are so many different options.

I highly recommend taking a visit to their website to have a look at the products. A few include: bread oils and balms, soaps, perfumes and candles.

If you have a bearded loved one in your life, you should absolutely check out Manmane for their products! They make wonderful gifts and they’ll be hooked going forward.

Maria Nila

This one will be a short one but I do have to rave about it. Maria Nila sell vegan wax grooming products that are perfect gifts!

Tom has always really struggled to find good hair product for his hair type. He’s got fine hair but a lot of volume.

I took a punt and bought him the Maria Nila Gneiss Moulding Paste. He absolutely loves it and can now style his hair properly without the unnecessary gunk of product all over his hair. And an added bonus is that it smells great too!

The Cruelty Free Beauty Box Deluxe [October 2019]

Another 2 months has passed us by so it’s time for another run through of my latest delivery of the Deluxe Cruelty Free Beauty Box! I was lucky enough to win this box this month in their usual sharing giveaway. I was so chuffed.

If you want to read about the box before this, click here for the post. Previous posts can be found under the Beauty section.

As always, the box did not disappoint and had so many goodies that I cannot wait to try!

This months box contained the following:

  • My HairCare Rescue My Hair Hydrate Shampoo Bar (RRP £14)
  • Natura Pumpkin Sheet Mask (RRP £5.95)
  • Fairypants perfume (RRP £1.50)
  • Palm Bar Body Butter Bar (RRP £5)
  • Bellapierre Liquid Gold 24k (RRP £30)
  • Niu Body Glow Facial Serum (RRP £27.95)
  • Gardner’s Halloween Cookie (RRP £2)
  • Vegan Bunny Chai Latte Soy Candle (RRP £13)
  • Jeavon’s Rizo (RRP £2.75)

The total value of the Deluxe box comes in at £102.15 but will only cost you £39.95.

I’ve eaten the cookie and Rizo bar already and both were a dream. I haven’t had shortbread for a long time and the Gardner’s cookie was a delicious shortbread.

I’ve written about Natura products in various other blog posts I’ve written and I love the sheet masks. They’re a really lovely treat so I’m looking forward to using this pumpkin one.

My final favourite is the Vegan Bunny Chai Latte candle. I’ve actually bought Vegan Bunny candles off Etsy before, but not for myself! I’ve bought Christmas scented candles as stocking fillers for my family members and regretted not buying one for myself. The Chai Latte smell is incredible! I haven’t lit the candle yet but I can’t wait till I do!

I absolutely cannot recommend The Cruelty Free Beauty Box enough. They only send every 2 months which is more than enough for me, and every month is full of new and interesting treats. I adore The Deluxe box with the lifestyle treats. It’s so nice to receive new things that I’d never normally buy for myself or want to try.

Fenty Beauty Matte Match Stix

I’ve written about Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Matte Foundation before which is now my go-to foundation and I highly recommend it! Blog post can be found here.

I convinced my friend Leah to treat herself to the foundation as she’d finished her non-cruelty-free foundation. While she was there, she also treated herself to the Match Stix Trio.

The intrigue got to me so I had a look. To emphasise here, don’t fall into the trap of buying the trio! On the FAQ, it states that only the matte match stix are vegan, not the shimmer stix.

What’s great about the match stix trio is that it provides you with an idea of your colouring based on your foundation colour. Mine is 230 so I sit within the medium colour range. So I bought the 2 matte match stix within that trio which were Bamboo and Mocha.

Each stick is a magnet so they stick to each other which is an interesting feature and likely to be beneficial if you have a lot of them.

As you can see one of them is a concealer and the other is a contour. Both are cream and incredibly easy to use! The product itself it’s very easily blendable with a brush or your finger and it creates the exact look and contour that I want. I’m far from a contouring expert but this makes it much easier. And for those of you who like a stronger contour look, this can be applied as heavily or lightly as you want!

At £21 each, they’re not the cheapest product on the market, but I’ve yet to find any contour set that comes close to matching in quality and perfect tone matching.

I’m incredibly happy with my purchase and they work great for me. I’ve read some reviews that they’re not great on dry skin so it may be worth doing some research and popping to your local boots to see if you can sample it but I love them!

Self Care Sundays: Issue 4

It’s been a while since I posted a Self Care Sunday post so apologies! It’s been a busy few weeks but I was finally able to take a beat…

Here are the products I treated myself to this time.

Lush: Unicorn Horn Bubble Bar

I am a big fan of a bubble bar. Bath bombs are lovely and smell amazing, but bubble bars give you the same thing with all of the bubbles! I bought the Lush Unicorn Horn bubble bar a few months ago and finally got to use it.

The bubble bar was lovely and didn’t produce heavy amounts of glitter which is a positive for me as I don’t like coming out of the bath caked in glitter or shimmer.

It was lovely and relaxing, and as always, I highly recommending visiting Lush for all your bathing and bubble needs!

Superdrug: Dead Sea Purifying Clay Mask

I’m not sure if I’ve written about this face mask before but it is my absolute favourite face mask. It is so refreshing and great for my pores.

It’s a Superdrug own brand mask and costs only 99p. It’s clearly labelled vegan which is great too. Here‘s the link to the product.

My only criticism of this is the packaging. I find these disposable packs really inconvenient and quite wasteful. I feel like I end up wasting product. I usually end up emptying it into a small Lush pot that I have spare and lying around to try and get the most of it.

PIXI: FortifEYE patches

Finally, I bought a new product the other day and have been using these on a few occasions, usually just when I’m sitting around watching TV.

Everyone loves an under-eye mask and these ones are great. There’s lots of pairs in the pot, but admittedly they are a little pricey. I managed to get these on LookFantastic with a discount code so it worked out quite well.

The reviews were really good and when I finally got them I definitely didn’t disagree. They were really easy to use and left my eyes feeling really refreshed. I do think that they’re lifting and firming well and I’m noticing the bags under my eyes less and less.

Don’t forget to treat yourselves every now and then because you deserve it!

Function of Beauty

I’d finally reach the end of my Maria Nila shampoo and conditioner bottles so it was time to re-evaluate my hair care.

My friend Emily recommended Function of Beauty to me. I’d seen adverts on Facebook before and found the whole thing very intriguing so I took the plunge and ordered some.

Ordering Process

The whole process was very easy. You take the hair quiz by selecting your hair type, the things that you care most or want to achieve from your hair, i.e. ‘Hair Goals’ and I chose the following:

  • Fix split ends
  • Colour protection
  • Oil control
  • Soothe scalp
  • Anti-frizz

You then also choose the colour and fragrance you want your product to be which was really cool. I went for peach and orange and yellow. When you’ve finally finished and signed up, you can submit your order and there are various options with size and subscriptions! I went for the largest one based on all the positive reviews I’d heard.

You can subscribe 3 monthly, 6 monthly and yearly. If you’re not willing to commit quite yet, there is an option to buy it as a one-off which gives you the opportunity to try it first. I decided to opt for a 6-monthly subscription which meant free delivery and a small discount for my first order. I think that was a Summer offer.

I submitted my order and I was given an ETA of 2nd September. You can pay to have it sooner but I didn’t mind waiting.

They give you plenty of updates through the process and let you know when your hair products are being developed and then when they’re dispatched also.

The Finished Product

My shampoo and conditioner arrived earlier than I expected. It arrived via Yodel on the 28th August which was almost a week earlier than stated.

It arrived beautifully packaged in recycled cardboard. My one gripe was that this was also covered in plastic wrap which I felt wasn’t really necessary.

My orange and yellow peach smelling shampoo and conditioner came with pumps and smelt amazing. I could smell them as soon as I opened the box. It also came with a little card to remind me what I selected on ordering and lots of stickers!

I used my new Function of Beauty products the following day and was very impressed. The shampoo lathered really well and smelt incredible. It’s left my hair is feeling luscious and always smelling amazing. I think I’ve definitely seen an improvement in my hair with less frizz and my scalp is less dry and itchy. I’m not sure on any oil control yet though but I’ve only been using it for a week!

Function of Beauty is cruelty-free and vegan, as well as producing paraben and sulphate free hair care. Here‘s a little blog post they’ve written about why they are vegan and cruelty free.

So far, I’m loving my new shampoo and conditioner and I would absolute recommend them to everyone. It is quite expensive but the customisability is a big selling point and as I mentioned above, I am definitely seeing improvements already!