Lavera

Lavera – Illuminating Effect Fluid

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Since the highlighter craze began in full force, The Amazing Blog joined in trying Benefit Cosmetics’ Watts Up! Highlighter and Rouge Bunny Rouge’s Love Lights Highlighting Powder. Both solid highlighter products gave our cheeks a heavenly glow, so we were excited to mix things up with a liquid highlighter and see the results. We were even more excited to receive the Illuminating Effect Fluid from one of our trusted brands Lavera, which has brought us so many #amazingfinds over the years from the SOS Help Hand Balm to the Powerful Lashes mascara.

The 100 per cent certified organic company has been a leader in the worldwide natural cosmetics industry since its founding in 1987. Its core mission is to create products that are ‘beautiful, natural, effective’ and sustainable. This mission is seen in everything from where the raw ingredients are sourced to product packaging and disposal.

The Illuminating Effect Fluid is no different from Lavera’s other products in its high-quality organic and natural ingredients as well as effectiveness. The highlighter, which we tried in Sheer Silver, has a light and creamy texture with pigments that naturally reflect light. It spreads easily and a little bit of this product goes a long way, even a light layer leaves a bright pearlescent sheen on your skin. While one layer of the highlighter is quite subtle and natural looking in the sun, you can build the product to create a deeper shine depending on if you want to refresh your typical look or make your cheekbones and brow bone pop. You can also use it as a foundation primer or mix it with moisturiser for an everyday glow.

The formula includes actual pearl extract to fresh your complexion and sunflower oil to smooth skin for additional radiance. Jojoba and shea butter help nourish skin with vitamins and minerals, and shea butter has even been proven to help with anti-ageing. It has also been dermatologically tested and is good for sensitive skin. You can purchase the highlighter (30ml) here for £14.90.

Friday Favourites- Lip Products

While skin care is very important, a lot of people forget to give their lips the TLC that they deserve. Although a good lip balm is a must, sometimes we need a little extra help to keep them moisturised, protected and plumped. For this week’s Friday Favourites at The Amazing Blog, we rounded up four NEW lip must-haves to use in your weekly lip care routine.

 

MYJ  - Knightsbridge Lip Mask

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The first step to any successful lip care routine is to make sure you have even foundation before applying your favourite gloss or lipstick. MYJ’s Knightsbridge lip mask does just this! It rejuvenates and moisturises lips for a plump and naturally-pink pout. Infused with hibiscus extract and other natural minerals, the Knightsbridge Lip Mask created to help improve the natural lip colour by regenerating skin cells. 

For this exfoliation, apply a layer of the lip mask to clean lips. Wait 5-10 minutes before wiping away and you will see a difference in your lips’ texture. After a few weeks of using the mask for MYJ’s recommended twice-a-week usage, we found lips were suitably moisturised and more kissable than ever before! For only £10, you can purchase a 15ml container of the lip mask here. We think that this is a must-have for having smoother and hydrated lips.

 

Jane Apothecary -  Restoring  Eye and Lip Serum

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We all know how important it is to incorporate a serum to your skincare routine but have you ever tried a serum that targets your lips?  This was a new on for us too!  Jane Apothecary’s Restoring Eye and Lip Serum provide that extra step to aid your lip care routine. Made in Spain, the serum is infused with only natural oils and extracts such as raspberry seed, sesame, grape seed, rose hip, chamomile and calendula that work beautifully together to tighten and minimise damage to your lip contour especially from the dreaded free radicals. The added infusion of the calming lavender, bergamot and geranium oils also adds a hint of aromatherapy healing  when you apply this serum to your lips.

For optimal results, we suggest applying a small amount of the Jane Apothecary’s Restoring Eye and Lip Serum to the lips after the removal of the lip mask (above). After patting the excess, continue the next steps in your routine. Even though the serum bottle is 10m, a little goes a long way with this deliciously rich serum. To purchase the Restoring Eye and Lip Serum for £32.67 click here.

 

Lavera -  SOS HELP Lip Balm

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Lavera’s SOS HELP Lip Balm is the perfect lip balm to protect and moisturise chapped lips for all year round. Since 1987, Lavera has developed and produced all its products in Germany using only  100 % natural formulas. With over 300 natural ingredients and actives, each product is made to the highest specification ensuring the quality of their products. The SOS HELP Lip Balm itself is made with their production of ground liquorice root to provide a calming and anti-inflammatory relief to even the most irritated lips.

In addition to being vegan and gluten-free, the lip balm contains no mineral oils or silicone to keep the skin’s natural skin barrier intact and nourished. Other extracts infused into the balm made from plants like the Echinacea strengthen and protect lips from getting dry and chapped. After applying the Jane Apothecary Restoring Eye and Lip Serum, we recommend applying a small amount of SOS HELP Lip Balm to help retain the moisturising effects. Purchase a 100 mL tube of the balm on here for £5.36

A.T Antao  -The Luna Trio

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Finally, while we’re all for a natural pout, sometimes we want a little pop of colour to enhance an outfit. The latest Chinese brand to hit the UK is AT Antao with one of their hero set of products which are their The Luna Trio. This pack of three mini lipsticks that come in three different highly-pigmented shades of red, all presented in a rather glamorous gold box. When A.T. founder Teniya Tao launched the brand in 2014, she aimed to market the brand on a global level by developing products that were highly effective yet non-toxic. The Luna Trio, like other A.T. products, are strategically developed with partnership with European laboratories to ensure these standards. Although the lipsticks when applied are matte on lips, the Vitamin E and jojoba and avocado oils which are infused into the formula, gives the lipsticks a creamy, effortless application.

A.T. also claims that their lipsticks contain lower levels of lead compared to other lipsticks in the market. So you can still have a bold lip without it having to be toxic to your body. These nourishing ingredients hydrate lips while still giving you a bold, matte look. The first lipstick in the trio, 519 Chili, is a coppery red that is great for a more subtle pop of colour. The next lipstick in the trio in the shade 520 Corail leaves lips covered with a gorgeous coral sheen. If you want a ‘true red’ colour, 521 Antao Red is a dialed-down version of the tone to great for putting together a more casual look.  After completing our suggested lip care routine, apply your favourite shade on moisturised lips for a finished lip routine. The Luna Trio is available for purchase for £33.90 on the AT Antao website here

Follow our suggested lipcare routine here with our #amazingfinds and it’s sure to leave your lip truly kissable!

Friday Favourites: Hand Creams

Hand cream is an absolute must for us at The Amazing Blog and as we’re still in the throes of winter, we can’t help noticing our chapped hands and split nails. Today we’re going to introduce you to some TLC for your hard-working digits. Whether you’re looking for a quick light fix or a protective barrier cream, we have a selection of our #amazingfinds for you to try.

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As regular readers will know we are fans of Rosenserien products and you’ll find our most recent post on their Shampoo & Body Scrub here. Now we are testing out their rather rich and delicious smelling Hand Cream this has 100% naturally sourced ingredients with more than 75% being organic, it is also vegan friendly and not tested on animals. Key ingredients are Aloe vera, coconut wax, jojoba oil, shea butter, calendula, vitamin E, soybean and rose oil.

What we particularly like about this hand cream is that it feels thick, nourishing and it lasts. It also smells deliciously of roses; this comes in 100ml tube for £17 here and a little goes a long way.

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Yes, it’s yet another natural skincare brand that we have a bit of a crush for. We recently wrote about their Firming Body Milk here . This SOS Help Hand Balm they say is for ‘demanding hands that require special intensive care,’ and we couldn’t agree more. Perhaps not as thick as Rosenserien, but equally as effective. This is much lighter in texture and the cream absorbs quickly. Their organic actives include cacao butter, almond and macadamia nut oil (to relieve tautness) shea butter (for increased elasticity).

SOS Hand Balm certainly comes to the rescue leaving soft hand and hydrated; this is perfect in this current chilly weather. SOS Help Hand Balm is 50ml at a reasonable price of £6.95 available here.


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This is a very different kind of hand cream from the others that we’ve mentioned. Cuderm Hand is more science-based and offers an intense hydration that forms a protective barrier. It has been created specifically for dry and sensitive hands and is fragrance free, SLS freehypoallergenicparaben free and alcohol-free. What makes this particularly unique is the key ingredient of their clinically proven colloidal oatmeal, which is obtained as a natural extract from oats. This helps to support, protect and promote healthy skin.

We think this cream is ideal for anyone with itchy or sensitive skin or who is exposed on a daily basis to environmental irritants. To purchase the 75ml tube for £5.49 see here.

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When you talk about a Potato Hand Balm its doesn’t sound very sexy or enticing. However, I’m assured that potato juice is the thing and extremely rich in vitamin C, hyaluronic acid and potassium minerals. These all offer protection against dry and cracked skin and various skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis. Potato juice is also deemed safe for any sensitive skins.

Styx Naturacosmetic is one of our #amazingfinds; and with over 50 year standing, this family run Austrian skincare brand has a strong belief in sustainability. So much so, that they’ve scooped up many environmental awards along the way. They believe in using organically grown and locally sourced wild plant-based raw materials for their ingredients, and when we met with them, they were insistent that we had to try this Balm! In Austria potatoes have been used for centuries to help heal the skin. This Potato Balm is based on a traditional Austrian peasant farmers’ recipe used as a remedy for treating all skin blemishes, sunburn, rough and chapped skin. In the balm there are also cold pressed vegetable oils (jojoba and macadamia) with the addition of shea butter and of course the potatoes. We like the slight sweet nutty fragrance, and that there was no greasy residue and it absorbed quickly. Potato Balm is available in a 70ml tube at £14.26 from Amazon here.

Whether your hand cream is made from roses, nut oils, colloidal oatmeal or potatoes; we hope that we’ve given you a ‘helping hand’ to try something just a little bit different.

Friday Favourites: Body Care Products

When The Amazing Blog did a quick beauty poll amongst some friends, it seems that body care products are something frequently overlooked. We all take great care to moisturise our faces, but what about our poor hard-working bodies? Today we have reviewed some of our #amazingfinds for the body, which we hope will tempt even the most sceptical or lackadaisical among you.

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Let’s begin with Lavera, a brand that we know and love (see here for more). Lavera never fails to live up to our expectations with their 100% certified organic ingredients, all of which are dermatologically proven, vegan and with all the free-froms. We like a good multi-tasker and with their Firming Body Milk we have found just that. Not only does it help to moisturise, but it also works to firm up the skin too. Lavera claims that when used every day, there will be a noticeable difference in your skin texture within two weeks – quite a claim, but one we can justify! Gently fragranced, the use of key ingredients, organic green coffee bean and green tea, help to stimulate the skin, for a soft and smooth finish. On the other hand, the use of rosemary and grape help to leave skin feeling silky-soft. It is lightweight to use and absorbs quickly, thankfully leaving no sticky residue. They suggest exfoliating first (Lavera has a rather lovely Smoothing Body Scrub) and applying daily. Whether you’re looking for body firming or not, we really liked the fragrance, feel and texture. Sensibly priced at £10.95 for a 200ml tube , it is available here.

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Next, we have CeraVe’s Moisturising Cream, an impressive hyaluronic acid and ceramide based barrier cream, suitable for use on both the body and face, and gentle enough for eczema-prone skin. What are ceramides, I hear you ask; they are lipids that not only help to form the skin’s barrier and retain moisture but also protect against environmental pollution. This body moisturiser is particularly suitable for anyone with dry or very dry sensitive skin. CeraVe is a US brand developed in tandem with dermatologists, they have over 70 products to offer and what makes their product unique is their revolutionary delivery system: MultiVesicular Emulsion Technology (MVE). This technology releases moisturising ingredients over a 24 hour period, layer by layer, to help keep skin soft all day long. Ingredients are not natural, but they are fragrance free, non-comedogenic and hypoallergenic. CeraVe are also quick to point out that they have received more Seal of Acceptance awards from the National Eczema Association than any other brand, which makes them a very tried and tested brand. Available from Boots or Superdrug, this is an economical product, £8.50 for 177ml.

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Our third body moisturiser is from the award-winning British brand PHB (Pure Handmade British) Ethical Beauty which is stuffed to the gunnels with delicious superfoods. This 2-in-1 Hand & Body Moisturiser has had us all cooing and oohing. We’ve been long-standing fans of PHB Ethical Beauty and have reviewed several of their products (and we hope many more) - see here. So when given the opportunity to try their new Hand & Body Moisturiser – we leapt at the chance! This brand is very special with 20% of their profits going to The OneLove Foundation (founded by PHB Ethical Beauty in 2015). All their products are made with ethically harvested and responsibly sourced ingredients that are 100% natural, vegan, cruelty-free and alcohol-free (Halal certified). They call this a “no-nonsense moisturiser” and we couldn’t agree more. It absorbs quickly and comes with a list of simple, natural and certified organic ingredients that perform; it feeds the skin with a pure and powerful blend of mango, shea butter, apricot and pumpkin seeds – we love both the fragrance and simplicity. It is available on the PHB website here for £16.60, in a 150ml recyclable tube.


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Our final discovery are Liquid Body Washes from Fil Blanc (meaning “white thread” in French), perhaps best known for their high-quality Hammam Turkish cotton towelling (we have our eye on their multi-coloured hand woven bath robe). The brand’s inspiration is taken from Mediterranean luxury living, with a touch of bohemia thrown in. Fil Blanc is based in historical St. Nicholas Market at the Exchange Hall, Bristol where they started three years ago. All products are sourced or designed by the founder Gulsum Gok. She very kindly sent us two of their body washes Relaxing and Orange & Jasmine. All body washes are 99% natural with a 81.98 % organic base, also vegan, cruelty and paraben free. Again they come with a very simple list of ingredients: Relaxing is made with essential oils of geranium, lavender, orange and ylang-ylang; whereas Orange & Jasmine has only these. Both contain honey and aloe vera with an Argan oil base. At a reasonably priced £12 for 259ml you can purchase both here, or alternatively make a visit to their Bristol HQ.

Now there is no excuse not to implement a little body pampering!

Friday Favourites: Eye Products

We’ve almost finished our first working week of the year, and that means only one thing: it’s time for our Friday Favourites! At The Amazing Blog, we have to admit that we’re pretty lax when it comes to eye care. While we all agree that having a sparkle in our eyes is important, the constant strains of staring at a screen, working late nights, or even applying eye makeup, can take their toll. Today we present our recent finds that have helped us to look a little more awake - and ready to take on a New Year!.

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Let’s start with Mitomo, a brand that provide high-quality beauty and health care products, all of which contain ingredients sourced in Japan. Their Eye Masks serve you with natural moisture, giving a unique treatment to the under eye region. We tried both the Snail + EGF Gold Mask and the Gold + Bee Venom Mask (both of which sounded very intriguing), and we were more than pleasantly surprised with the results.

The Eye & Nasolabial Mask with Snail Extract and EGF helps to regenerate damaged cells, both under the eyes, and around the nose, with natural components that improve your overall skin condition. The use of Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF) helps to regenerate new cells, encouraging your under eye area to look brighter and smoother. On the other hand, the Anti-wrinkle Eye Mask with Gold and Bee Venom does exactly what it suggests, helping to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. By promoting the production of collagen and elastin, this mask helps to create a radiant glow, deeply moisturising the area and promoting skin elasticity. Both masks are best applied for 20-30 minutes, and to make the most of the ingredients, the excess should be gently patted into the skin. You can buy each pack seperately for £3.29, the Snail and EGF mask here or the Gold and Bee Venom here. Alternatively each mask is available in a pack of 10 for £29.61.

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Our second step for perfect eye care is Elizabeth Grant’s Supreme Cell Vitality Victory Eye Serum . We’ve reviewed Elizabeth Grant’s products before, namely her Suprême Cell Vitality Neck Creme. We were therefore keen to try an eyecare product, hoping it would prove equally moisturising and luxury. We were not disappointed!

The Supreme Cell Vitality Victory Eye Cream is a lifting and energising serum for the delicate eye area, perfectly suitable for all skin types. Inducing anti-ageing effects, it contains natural actives to reduce the appearance of under-eye puffiness, creating tighter feeling skin, while making the eye-area look more youthful. Leaving your skin plumped and nourished thanks to Elizabeth Grant’s own innovation Torricelumn, vitality is produced in a bottle, and dark shadows are reduced. To apply, pat a small amount around your eye area both morning and at night. Containing CoQ10, this product also promotes collagen renewal, revitalising your under eye area. To purchase your own 30ml bottle for $70, click here.

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Now our under eyes are suitably moisturised, it’s time to turn to our eyelashes. We discovered Apraise, a brand providing an exclusive collection of professional eyelash and eyebrow products. They particularly specialise in water resistant and smudge proof tints, but have equally turned their hand to lashcare. This is the area that interested us most, with the use of Optiplex growth technology. We tried their Power Serum, a product promising thicker and stronger eyelashes in just 15 days. We were keen to put this to the test!

This serum contains active ingredients that stimulate hair follicles, leading to fuller and stronger lashes and brows. All too often, similar products do nothing but moisturise your eyelashes, and although this is no bad thing, we were pleased to find that this Power Serum has real (and visible) results. By reducing the loss of eyelashes, your lashes look healthy and full, and as it is packaged like conventional mascara, it is simple to apply. Apply a thin coat over your lashes and brows twice a day (mornings and evenings) and you won’t have to wait long for baffling results! To try this product for yourself, visit the Amazon website here, where you will find the Power Serum available for £9.99.

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Last but not least, nothing completes an eye look quite like a good coating of mascara. On our quest to find a new favourite, we discovered the brand Lavera, and were keen to try their Powerful Lashes product. Lavera provide certified natural cosmetics, with the use of high quality ingredients, packaging and production processes, so we were keen to see whether their mascara would live up to the high performance ethos.

The Powerful Lashes mascara is organic and vegan, leaving your lashes looking fuller and longer. Unlike many mascaras, this formula is multi-purpose, giving your eyelashes the benefit of a volumised, defined and lengthened look. Additionally, thanks to the rubber brush, our natural curl is held, catching each lash seperately, giving optimum volume without clumping. Being ophthalmologically tested, this product is also suitable for contact lense wearers, and thanks to the dermatological testing, you can be safe in the knowledge that your eyes will not react to the ingredients. There’s nothing worse than streaming panda eyes! To purchase Powerful Lashes, visit the Lavera website here where you will find it available for £14.90.

There you have it - our newfound products for a New Year eyecare routine. Give them a try, and be sure to let us know how you get on!