Scent Republik - Whoosh Stick

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Children can’t help it; they love running around, climbing up trees and getting themselves dirty. We certainly don't want that to change at The Amazing Blog, but a product to ensure that our children don't smell like wild ones is a concept we can’t argue with. Scent Republik's Scent Sticks for children provide us with just that - six fragrances in a stick form that is easy to handle, and fun to use.

The brand Scent Republik was created by two fathers, Kevinn Hirsch and Alex Theodorou, who wanted to offer children on the verge of puberty a non-sexualized scent. They aimed to create products that make children feel good about themselves, whatever mood they are in, or no matter the daily tasks they face. The different scents are subtle and natural, and as they are manufactured in the UK, and made from cruelty-free and vegan-friendly ingredients, the products are suitable for children even with sensitive skin. The brand offers a variety of six different sticks, each with a fantastic name that underlines the children’s mood: Chill, BFF, Fab, Yay, Zap and Whoosh.

We were sent the Whoosh Scent, a blend of raspberry, strawberry and cassis. Like with all of the range, the packaging is travel-friendly, and the stick can be used up to 1000 times. These fragrances are the perfect cross-over from overly sweet child-like perfumes to adult fragrances, which are pricier and let’s face it, not suitable for children. Little ones can use the Scent Republik sticks as a type of invisible marker, and will be greeted with a non-sticky, and fresh formula. This dries quickly, so it can be applied in an instant - the least time chasing children around with products, the better!

Try these lovely scents here, perhaps as a gift for a loved one - we think they’d be great stocking fillers. Each stick is priced at £4.95.

Kaeso Beauty - Eye Believe

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We at The Amazing Blog believe in many things. We believe that beauty is within every one of us, that a fresh cup of coffee in the morning makes all of our troubles go away, and that sunscreen is crucial to maintain healthy and young-looking skin. Today however, we’re saying ‘eye believe’ in oil-based make-up removers. Kaeso Beauty's recent launch of Eye Believe is every lazy beauty addicts dream, as a hydrating cleansing oil that removes even waterproof mascara. As a brand, Kaeso Beauty aims to use “naturally derived ingredients with essential treatment formulas to deliver effective and luxurious professional products”. This is something we can quantify, having tried their Heel Rescue and Foot Mask products (see here). We were therefore excited to try Eye Believe!

This product cleanses and moisturises at the same time, and thanks to the use of antioxidant and vitamin-rich ingredients, it won’t leave your eyes swollen and red. The use of cranberry, grapefruit and pomegranate creates a unique blend that leaves our skin feeling fresh, clean and moisturised. It is a perfect combination between a tough makeup remover and a gentle skin treatment, and even helps reverse visible signs of ageing. As we know, the eye area can truly reveal our age, so it’s crucial to treat the delicate skin around our eyes with non-stripping products. We found Eye Believe effective at doing just that, as a a gentle product, with a simple, fresh and subtle fragrance. It makes makeup removal feel more like spa time.

This luxurious product is suitable for all skin types and free from parabens, sulphates and mineral oils, making it a naturally fresh and healthy beauty treat. Furthermore, it is entirely cruelty-free and vegan-friendly. To try this eye-makeup remover for yourself, then you’ll find this professional product in many local salons. Alternatively, you can purchase it here for £9.80. Panda eyes no more!

Lovegrove Essentials - Aromatic Face Mask

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Acne, many of us suffer from it, or have experienced it in the past, so I'm sure we don’t need to explain the frustration it can cause, or the self-esteem issues it can create. We're always searching for new ways of combatting this issue and have found a potential remedy that made us dance in circles of joy in The Amazing Blog office. We’re talking about Lovegrove Essentials’ multi-purpose Aromatic Face Mask which exfoliates, deeply cleanses and balances oily skin all at once. What more could we ask for?

We came across Lovegrove Essentials when reviewed their Lavender and Clary Sage Massage Balm. We subsequently discovered the artisan backstory of the mother and daughter duo, Hannah and Hayley, a pair determined to create a skincare range that would not just have a topical effect, but a holistic one also.

This time, we were thrilled to try the Aromatic Face Mask, a unique formula of nourishing almond oil and bentonite clay which reduces redness, treats inflammation and lightens acne scars. This product works right at the core of the problem, as a regenerative, soothing and re-balancing mask that supports the normal function of the acid mantle. The subtle and fresh scent of the orange peel has a cleansing and exfoliating effect on all skin types and was a welcome aroma in the bathroom. I have relatively oily skin, but after 10 minutes, it was left feeling supple and moisturised, without feeling overly dry or stripped of natural oils. Members of the office who suffer from dry skin reported a detoxified complexion, without the cracking feeling that is so often part and parcel of clay masks. So this mask really is suitable for all.

This product brings the spa to your home - with a blend of neroli essential oil, almond oil, zinc oxide and geranium essential oil, which work together to calm and de-stress the skin, as well as the mind. This mask provides a little aid in our daily lives, helping to control both emotional and hormonal imbalances. It indeed converts you into a serene, superhuman, full of peacefulness and self-confidence - something I feel we all could do with from time to time! The skin also feels deeply hydrated after use, much needed at this time of the year.

The mask comes with a brush that helps to spread the product in even layers. While taking 5 minutes to relax and unwind, the mask does the job for you. When taking the mask off, gently remove the product with a warm and soft cloth. If you want to encourage a more powerful effect, to battle deep scarring and hydrate the skin even further, then it is safe to layer up and leave the mask on for up to 10 minutes.

If you feel like treating yourself to a DIY spa in your own four walls, the Lovegrove Aromatic Face Mask is available for £34.95 here.

Foamie Men

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We offer up to you, our Amazing Blog readers, the incredible Foamie - the latest accessory that simply HAS to be tried. This brand ensures that you are getting absolutely every last drop of indulgence from your daily shower routine. Like the best of us, it has hidden qualities which may not be immediately apparent on first glance - certainly us boys may simply look at this as just another sponge - and that would be a huge mistake, for it is what is on the inside that counts … and how many times have we heard that?

The genius of Foamie lies in the fact that the cleansing cream foam is contained within the sponge itself, and as you apply the water liberally, the deliciously scented magic is released. So no need to take any other paraphernalia under that showerhead - all the prep is done for you. The only necessity is to liberally apply water, and then the Foamie Men begins it’s 4 in 1 lathersome repartee: the sponge exfoliates and massages, whilst the soap nourishes and cleanses. We can also expect an extra dose of manliness into the mix, which can’t be a bad way to start the day … or evening!

Now, here’s the science bit, and yes they have covered every aspect of user-friendliness too … the Foamie chaps are nothing if not consistent - there are no parabens, silicones, sulphates, mineral oils or lily aldehydes to spoil the party. Of course, going the extra mile, this amazing product is 100% vegan and has not been tested on animals. It is suitable for all skin types and pH adjusted to maintain the skin’s protective layer.

And yes of course, the whole caboodle is patented, so let’s just celebrate this German ingenuity and their generosity in sharing it with us, whilst we joyously ablute. So ‘where’s the catch?’ we can hear you cry - well even the price is modestly placed at £7.99, and Foamie is widely available through supermarkets, chemists and of course on the Foamie website.

Friday Favourites: Cookbooks

Cooking is something we're divided on at The Amazing Blog. Half of us are avid chefs, and the rest, well they would prefer never to turn an oven on again. What we do agree on though, is that a good cookbook can ease the battle of turning everyday ingredients into delicious meals, helping even the most unenthusiastic of cooks to rustle up a tasty dish. We have discovered the following cookbooks, each one guaranteed to contain a vast amount of recipes that will make your cooking restaurant worthy in no time!

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Firstly, we came across Eating Well Everyday, the brainchild of chef Peter Gordon. Originally from New Zealand, Gordon's extensive knowledge of cooking has stemmed from numerous culinary travels, through which he has gained inspiration to use Asian, Indonesian and Indian flavours. His passions have also led him to receive an ONZM (the equivalent of an OBE), notably awarded as a result of having organised a "Who's Cooking Dinner" event, which raised over £6.3 million for leukaemia research. We are therefore safe in the knowledge that this cookbook has been written by someone who truly knows how to cook (and has a passion for it).

Written for "home cooks everywhere", this book contains 170 recipes, covering everything from breakfast to dinner party meals. Self-proclaimed to contain “tasty and daring, yet simple and straightforward" dishes, this is something we can vouch for. Even the most inexperienced of chefs amongst us were able to follow these recipes with ease (and perhaps even enjoyment). Our favourite dishes? The Chicken and Peanut Coconut Curry (page 166) and Pumpkin, Ginger, Chickpea and Cheese Soup (page 50) - both guaranteed to warm you up on a cold winter's evening. We also love the Peanut, Pecan and Chocolate Cookie recipe for a sweet after-dinner treat. To purchase Eating Well Everyday for £22, then click here.

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Secondly, we came across The Lazy Weekend Cookbook, a firm favourite amongst the less enthusiastic cooks of the office. Written by chef Matt Williamson, this book contains over 150 pages of delicious recipes for weekend cooking. Williamson explains that the goal of the book is to provide recipes that can be cooked leisurely, as opposed to the usual mid-week rush to get anything on the table. His advice is to choose a particular few meals to focus on, meaning you can rustle up some exceptional dishes, without spending all weekend in the kitchen.

The book is structured into mealtimes and moments, ranging from breakfasts and brunches, to easy dinner party meals, and bakes. Each meal is designed for 4 people; however, we found it easy to scale this up or down, dependant on the situation. There are too many favourites to share, but the Quick Sesame Flatbreads with Honey Butter (page 29) and Moroccan Spiced Chicken Pie (page 54) are two stand out recipes that we couldn't not mention. We also like the weight and temperature conversions at the back of the book, meaning we have less chance of cremating our newfound recipes! To ramp up your weekend cooking, then you can purchase a copy of Williamson's The Lazy Weekend Cookbook here for £20.

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Finally, we discovered MOB Kitchen by Ben Lebus. Known for his online presence, Lebus' YouTube channel has grown a strong following, with an empire of over 250,000 social media followers in just 18 months. His niche? Providing meals for four people that are under £10. More recently, Lebus has extended this knowledge into a cookbook, aiming to encourage people to cook delicious and nutritious meals, that are still affordable. This concept is particularly popular among students and young professionals, proving that delicious meals don't need to cost a small fortune. By creating a cookbook, Lebus' new mission is to educate all ages, whether that be people who choose not to use social media, or those of us who simply like to have a physical copy at hand.

The cookbook is segmented by time and goal, ranging from Brunch MOB to Speedy MOB and Flashy MOB. These contain over ten different recipes, amounting to 140 pages of recipes and visual guidelines. Each page has key symbols, with Spotify Codes on each recipe page, allowing readers to listen to the corresponding playlist/song. This is something we found interesting, tapping into the active social media tie Lebus has. We particularly enjoyed making the Chocolate Chilli Con Carne (page 94), and the Crunchy Vegan Aubergine Katsu (page 122) both of which stopped us from shelling out on unnecessary and expensive takeaways. To purchase your own copy of MOB Kitchen, click here, where you can find ideas to get the mob fed for £14.99.

These cookbooks have certainly helped us to eat better this November, with warming and comforting dishes that are easy to make, and reasonable to rustle up. Try them for yourself or we think these cookbooks would make a great Christmas gift for someone in need of spicing up their mealtimes. Happy cooking!