The Festive Edit – SKIN!!!

Tis the season to ….  go to a lot of Christmas Parties …. reader it is time to get your glam on! Unless your are some kind of supermodel it is also time to get your skin Festive ready. Are you ready?

Face Masks and Exfoliators
Every artist needs a great canvas to work from and more importantly your skin 100% deserves a lot of love.  It is the perfect excuse to mini facial at home. I love to use either a clay mask or skin polish 1 or 2 times a week to help detoxify, nourish, exfoliate and brighten up my skin. I tend to switch between these two gorgeous multi-tasking products.

First up is the Restore Face Mask by Mallow + White. What I love most about this is that I can use it as an exfoliating powder in the shower or leave it on my skin to let its hard working natural ingredients gently detoxify my skin. With an ingredient list including deep sea mud, Moroccan lava clay, organic cornstarch, green tea powder and organic rose geranium essential oil your skin will be left detoxified, smoothed and rebalanced. I love that this mask comes in a powder form. Great for travel too. Its results helped it get the seal of approval of a number of my friends …. very quickly.

Secondly is the Refine & Polish Miracle Balm from Aurelia Probiotic Skincare. This great product uses fruit enzymes and rice bran to exfoliate and brighten congested or dull complexions. The sublime blend of uplifting essential oils including chamomile, bergamot, eucalyptus and rosemary is gorgeous!! This multi- tasker can be used as an instant exfoliator to boost the skin’s circulation or it can just as easily be left on for about 5mins as a deep exfoliating enzyme mask.

Face Cleansers
My skin like yours is variable. Diet, weather and hormones are amongst some of the things that will have an impact on my skin. No shock then that I vary my cleanser depending on the season and what my skin needs. These five cleansers are part of my arsenal to keep my skin in good clean condition.

Odylique Silk Touch Cleanser is the cleanser for you if you like a gel cleanser or if your skin is feeling a little dehydrated. Apply on your skin as a gel and this a preservative free cleanser turns milky as soon as you massage in water. This 100% natural and 98% organic Silk Touch Cleanser rinses  well and removes make up.  I personally like to double cleanse with this one if I am wearing any makeup, once to remove any makeup and secondly to let the skin benefit from the products ingredients.  Suitable to use on even the most sensitive of skins and eye area.

Bioskin Face Cleanser is 97% natural and is perfect for those with Eczema, dermatitis, rosacea or inflamed skin.  The smallest amount of this gorgeous smelling cleanser is all that is needed. When I first tried it I thought it was orange that I pick out in the smell, but no, it is pink grapefruit. Love it. When my skin is feeling sensitive I love to use the Bioskin Face Cleanser in the shower in the morning before applying my Dermaserum and in the evening as the skin soothing second part of a double cleanse. It is packed full of omega rich sea buckthorn, jojoba, starflower, witch hazel, rosemary and pink grapefruit. Fantastic at calming down inflamed skin.

Miracle Cleanser by Aurelia Probiotic Skincare is a great all rounder and is more than just a cream style cleanser. This Miracle Cleanser is really cooling to apply and wonderfully aromatic.  I find it to have a whipped cream like texture which doesn’t stick to or drag the skin, but smooths along the surface, making it great for massaging onto all skin types. The aroma of this cleanser is definitely uplifting and is a glorious blend of Chamomile, Eucalyptus, Rosemary and Bergamot. Wonderfully therapeutic too and perfect if the party season has left you feeling a little jaded!  You will love this cleanser if you like your skin to be left with no residue on it. This Miracle Cleanser packs a punch. Its does natural cleansing really well, removes make up and hydrates skin but it also uses probiotic and peptide technologies to give your skin science proven results. Best of both worlds. Great for a mini facial at home and this is one cleanser that I don’t need to double cleanse with. It simply leaves me with an impeccably fresher and radiant complexion …. the perfect base for anything else you put on your skin.

Sometimes you want to keep it simple, you just want to cleanse and wipe off….no rinse. Sukin Micellar Cleansing Water is great for this. It is also perfect after a night out when you are “tired”, want to clean your skin before bed but you know that any form of water hitting your face will wake you up!! The calming aroma of this product will also help. I am trying my best to describe it …..a slight essence of almond mixed with vanilla, cucumber and chamomile…. doesn’t sound great, but it works! Sukin’s Micellar Cleansing Water gently removes make up, impurities or dirt from the skin with the help of its fatty acids esters (micelles).  Job done. Top tip… if for some ghastly reason you mess up your eyeliner or any other part of your makeup application, just use a small amount of this on a cotton bud or pad to rectify.

Last but not least for those of you who like a balm cleanser …. Botanicals Cleansing Melt with Rose & Camellia. The product in this pot is here to cleanse away all impurities, re-balance your skin without stripping it of its natural oils.  Massage this 87% organic melt onto the skin before removing it with a hot cloth ritual. This is one balm cleanser that you can safely use every day. I love the delicate rose, rose geranium and ylang ylang smell and find this cleanser removes most make up first time. I am happy to find an excuse to do a double cleanse though! I like this product especially when my skin is feeling a bit on the dry side. Only a small amount of this solid style melt is required.

Face Oils
Every day I use a face oil. This has been one thing that I have changed in my daily routine this year and my skin loves it.  It tend to choose my face oil each day and will take on board how my skin feels and also which of the essential oils I am drawn to most.  These are some of my favourites.

Bloom Remedies have such a well rounded range of organic products. These natural products are made in small batches and really harness the therapeutic effects of the ingredients. Add on top the fact they are also free from parabens, SLS, silicones, mineral oils, petrochemical derivatives, artificial fragrances or colours, phthalates, PEGs or EDTA and I guarantee you will fall in love with at least one of their range. I love their Daily Revive Facial Oil. This was one of the first facial oils that my skin just connected with instantly.  It is packed full of Evening Primrose, Rosehip, Frankincense, Rose, Meadowfoam oil, Jojoba Oil and Seabuckthorn Extract. Love Love Love this cold pressed, anti ageing and nourishing oil.

Sukin’s Botanical Hydration Booster is something I love using under my regular face oil when my skin is needing a boost. Sukin a No.1 Skincare brand from Australia who really do go the whole hog. They make amazing products in recycled packaging, they are carbon neutral and are also very aware of how their business could impact our natural environment.

Mallow + White Restore Face Oil keeps its ingredients list simple and effective. With only five ingredients this rich blend of organic botanicals includes rosehip oil, apricot kernel oil, grapeseed oil, jojoba oil and rose geranium essential oil. Guaranteed to leave have your normal/dry skin feeling rejuvenated and nourished.

This next product is not strictly an oil but a serum and is wonderful for sensitive skin that is prone to eczema, dermatitis, rosacea or psoriasis. Bioskin Dermasun by Salcura is utterly genius. I recently had a rather annoying and unattractive experience of eczema on the skin under my eye.  After my first use of this 98% natural and synthetic free product I noticed a remarkable change in my inflamed, itchy and flaky skin. This gentle product is designed to be used on the face and eye area and is powerful enough to see results very quickly at the same time as being natural.  Amazing. Dermaserum is a lightweight and easily absorbed serum that nourishes and soothes the skin with ingredients like sea buckthorn, aloe vera and safflower.

At night, particularly after I have indulged in a face mask I love to use this Radiance Night Oil by Living Nature.  This award winning oil is great for normal or dry/anti aging skin. While you sleep is when your body repairs itself and this helps the skin rejuvenate with rose oil, frankincense oil, jojoba oil, rosehip oil, calendula oil and the skin nourishing and toning powerhouse that is carrot oil. I like to use it by itself but this clever oil also lends itself well to being added to a moisturiser, hand cream or face mask. Naturally anti-aging…. need I say more.

Face Toners
For an instant pep me up for my skin I love to use the Bloom Remedies Hydrating Floral Toner. I either spritz it on the skin before I apply my face oil or throughout the day as a little refresher. I spray this mix of rose water, neroli and geranium as the perfect cheeky little pick me up when I have just woken up or to  enliven me if I have been staring at the PC for a while.  The Hydrating Floral Toner really makes me think of an old rose water spray that I used to use on long haul flights.

There are two specific eye products that I think are perfect for skin around your eyes during the festive season …. actually the whole year. They are cooling, smoothing, brightening and wonderful to apply. The Eye Revitalising Duo by Aurelia Probiotic Skincare has these two products all wrapped up in a beautiful box. Your eyes need different things at different times of the day so why only use one product. These two work perfectly in synergy with each other.  The Revitalise & Brighten Eye Dew is a cooling wake up call for your eyes in the morning…. and boy do my eyes need it and enjoy it. I love the easy application with the rollerball! This is my favourite of the Eye Duo and it is described as being scientifically proven to result in an age correction improvement of 5 years in 28 days of daily use! The Illuminate & Smooth Puff Reduction Eye Cream comes in a jar with its own small black spatula, holds a lovely rich texture and smells deliciously of rose. Its naturally powerful ingredients of arnica, centella asiatica and butcher’s broom make this a powerhouse of a concoction. Expensive…. £90 yes ….but it effectively reduces the nemeses of the eye area – wrinkles, puffiness and dark circles …. hallelujah!

For the body, I have always traditionally used salt scrubs or the like, however yesterday my house guest used twice as much coffee than what was required for your average caffeine addict …. leaving a 3 inch deep block of coffee grinds at the bottom of my cafetiere. I was determined not to let my beloved Three Sixty  Guatamala Antigua coffee grinds go to waste so I added them to sugar and voila I had the most awesome home made body scrub! Very pleased with myself ….. actually high fiving myself with the result. The sugar has a glycolic effect on the skin and this scrub left my body silky smooth. You can also add in some olive or coconut oil to the scrub for extra hydration. The coffee granules I used were moist and I used them immediately. I would recommend mixing dry coffee granules with sugar and place in a Kilner style jar for freshness though.

Coconut Oil has become one of my favourite products ( I have been using this 100% organic raw one from Viridian). Great on your hair, to cook with, teeth whitening and also as a body hydrator. The smallest amount can transform the texture of my skin and also leave it smelling gorgeous.  My only word of note is that it is not something I can use just prior to getting dressed. It definitely needs time to soak in.

Aurelia Firm & Revitalise Dry Body Oil is great on a number of levels. The smell of this oil is very feminine and mixes neroli, lavender, rose and mandarin oil beautifully together. I like to use this oil on slightly damp skin. No sooner have you applied this dry oil, massaged it in and you are good to get dressed. It doesn’t fall into the trap of many dry body oils by leaving a weird residue on your skin either. It leaves your skin fully moisturised, smelling fairly terrific and set for the rest of the day.

So dear reader, there we have it. Go forth, get yourself ready, let us know your favourite products to get your skin ready this festive season.