This month I've found some gems, and I cannot imagine that they won't be among my forever favourites, and not one-hit wonders, so to speak, or even in the category of "I'm-only-featuring-them-here-and-using-them-once-after-they-were-sent-to-me".
Here's what's hot on my shelves:
Si Rose Signature by Giorgio Armani, R1 634 for 50ml
I have loved Si and its variants every since I bought a bottle of the original a few years ago. The new Si Rose Signature probably tops the original for me, and it's my daily spirtz-on.
t's floral and fruity, and features rose de mai, damask rose, bergamot, mandarin orange, freesia, blackcurrant, vanilla, osmanthus, iris, ambrette (musk mallow), amber and patchouli.
Mother's Day is only in May, but this is worth adding to your wishlist…
La Roche-Posay Anthelios 50+ Stick, R215
I can't believe no one thought of a sunscreen "stick" sooner, as it makes complete sense to have the convenience of applying a stick to your face and hard-to-reach areas. The La Roche-Posay 50+ Stick is like a big version of Lip Ice, and is easy to apply over your whole face, and hit the spots that you sometimes forget, eg eye area, nose, ears and lips.
With an SPF 50+, it obviously offers high broad-sprectrum sun protection against UVA and UVB rays.
I found it easy to apply, fast absorbing and light, and it's the perfect size for my handbag (awesome for touch-ups in the day, or if you find yourself outdoors and forgot to apply sunscreen) and for my running pouch when I run races. Previously I had to either find sunscreen samples to run with, or decant from a big bottle into a little pot, but this stick is just perfect, and I don't need to fuss with application.
It's available from DisChem and these online stores:
You've probably heard a lot about SKOON, the local skincare range that uses natural ingredients only such as plant oils, butter, botanical extracts and floral essences. I got sent a few samples recently, and the next day, I was on their magnificent website buying more.
This range is clean and simple, with packaging that makes it amazing to use (I love great packaging, and it fairly or unfairly, adds to much to my experience of the product). It's great because you can match products to your skin needs, and the site also helps you shop by your skin type, eg sensitive, combination, dry.
There is nothing I've tried that I don't love, and I confess that I've actually placed another order for even more products as I can't get enough. So far, I've used the Whitewash purifying clay cleanser, Moisture Now serum, White Cloud Manuka oil, Ruby Marine hydrating mask, The One moisturiser, and Frangipani body oil.
My skin is looking and feeling better – softer, and more moisturised and glowing – and I never thought I'd experience this, but I actually love my morning and night skincare routines now.
Urban Decay primers and setting sprays
You by now know that Urban Decay are famed for their Naked eyeshadow palettes, but there's so much more to this brand than just colour and edginess.
They've just launched makeup setting sprays, priming sprays and primers, and most of you might be asking why you need a primer or setting spray in the first place. Well, whether you wear a little or a lot of makeup, primer preps your skin for whatever goes on top, whether it's concealer, foundation or BB cream, and fills in lines and smooths pores. Whenever I skip this step, I notice that my makeup cakes off, especially on my nose, reminding me that there's no point in not priming.
A setting spray keeps your makeup in tact the whole day, and it's worth trying just to see how it works. I recently read an article about a beauty editor who sprayed on setting spray onto her made-up face before going to sleep, and woke up with her makeup perfectly intact. I find that there's no harm in a spritz of setting spray, especially when I'm going out at night and don't really feel like touching up anything.
Urban Decay has three makeup setting sprays:
- All Nighter, which promises to keep makeup looking looking good for up to 16 hours without melting, fading or settling into fine lines.
- De-Slick, which controls oil, deflects shine, and keeps skin looking matte
- Chill, which "cools" the surface of your makeup and is said to help it last for up to 12 hours without smudging or settling into fine lines
I've been using the De-Slick, which is just awesome for my skin, and has an added bonus of a great scent too. I'm not sure if it's meant to, but the spray makes my skin looking refreshed too, which is also a bonus (I have a six-month-old baby, so this is much needed).
Also in the spray range is Quick Fix Hydra-Charged Complexion Prep Priming Spray, a post-cleanse facial mist that promises to visibly reduce pores, and brighten and smooth skin. There's also the B6, a soothing prep spray that has a stabilised form of vitamin B6, which absorbs oil, minimises pores and reduces redness. This is absolutely divine on my skin, and very refreshing.
As for the primers, there are four in the range:
- De-Slick which keeps oil in check and mattifies
- Optical Illusion, which blurs out flaws
- Urban Defense, which primes and smooths, and protects against the sun
- Self Adjust, which is colour correcting and adjusts to your skin's tone
I've been using the Optical illusion, which is fantastic for all my blemishes, and goes on like a balm. It gives just the result I'm after in a primer – my foundation is easy to apply, and I have no caking around my nose and cheeks.
The sprays and primers cost R450 each, and are available at Urban Decay Stuttafords Sandton, Foschini Eastgate and foschiniforbeauty.co.za
Eli & You
Eli & You is a beautiful organic range that deserves attention for its wide range of natural yet hard-working products. In the range, there are baby and mom specific products, and other products such as heel balm, liquid soap, massage oil and sunscreen for men and women.
Most of the products come in glass jars, and I find the experience of using the range very pampering and enjoyable (yay again for great packaging!)
I've been using a few of the mom and baby products such as:
Breast Massage Oil: Contains chamomile, franincense, calendula, honeybush, sweet almond oil and olive. The oil aims to promote a firmer bust-line and reduce scars or stretch marks, and stimulate your lymphatic system and blood flow
Beloved Body Oil: Contains rose geranium oil and lavender oil, and cleanses and moisturises the skin. It smells divine, and I particularly love using it as night as I find the fragrance very relaxing.
Baby Body Oil: Contains calendula oil, almond oil and fruit oil to calm, soothe and moisturise delicate skin. I love this non-greasy formula, and I find it wonderful for massage too.
Baby Barrier Balm: This barrier cream is made to prevent and treat nappy rash. I can't vouch for the treatment part, but it seemed to do a great job on the barrier side. I've only ever used thick barrier creams before trying this balm, and it glides on easily and is a more pleasurable application experience than the others.
These products will likely remain regulars in my routine, and I'm keen to try out other products in the range such as the cradle cap oil, and Muscle Ease Massage Oil.