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Friday Favourites – Cleansers

As we all know the key essential to any good skin care routine is to use a gentle and effective cleanser, not only to remove the daily grime but the residue of our makeup. However, during our research for this feature, we at The Amazing Blog found that there were quite a few readily available high street brands, but they were mainly water-based with chemicals. This combination strips your skin of its natural oils, leaving your face feeling tight and dry rather than supple and refreshed. That is why we wanted to share some of our Friday Favourites which are the latest #amazingfinds for oil-based cleansers and cleansing balms. We know what you’re probably thinking: ‘Oil? Won’t that clog up my skin?’ Rest assured we’ve tried and tested our choices. We all have very different skin types here at The Amazing Blog ranging from very dry to extremely oily and none of these cleansers clogged our pores.

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The first #amazingfind, we found was the Jane Apothecary Soothing Cleansing Balm. This Spanish-based company was founded by Elena Padilla, a biologist and cosmetics expert, after she began breaking out when she turned 30 years old. Jane Apothecary is an award winning brand (see 2019 Beauty Shortlist here) that we have fallen in love with, and recently wrote about their Restoring Eye &  Lip Serum . Elena soon discovered the benefits of vegetable oils and plants to soothe skin as well as other women who were in a similar situation as herself. This led her to create all-natural products that ‘care for and calm the skin of women over 30 years’ while providing hydration and preventing ageing.

The Cleansing Balm’s oil and vegetable wax base gives the product a thick texture and melts in your hands to create a cleansing oil. It has marigold extract, chamomile, and aloe vera to soothe and soften your skin along with bio shea butter to help protect your skin’s natural oils. After using this product, your skin won’t feel greasy, but perfectly moisturised and clean. What made this cleansing balm worthy of a lot of love at the Beauty Shortlist Awards is that it has been specially formulated for sensitive skin as well as redness- and rosacea-prone skin while smelling fresh. Many products that treat skin conditions often smell like a hospital or have no scent. Jane Apothecary uses a mix of lemongrass, orange, and lavender essential oils to give the balm a signature strong lemongrass scent that has aromatherapeutic properties to help you relax while cleansing your face.

If you want extra soft skin, you can leave a small layer of the cleansing balm on for 20 minutes before removing it with warm water and the organic cotton wipe provided. Only a small dollop of this product is needed each time you cleanse your face, so we can safely say the price is worth what you get. You can purchase the Soothing Cleansing Balm (60ml) here for 35.54€


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The next cleansing balm we have for you is the Nourish Cleanse Melt: Rose & Camellia. This product may look or sound familiar because we reviewed the Botanicals Nourishing Face Balm in the same beautiful scent. We’ve found and fallen in love with many products from Botanicals (check out our brand directory here) and the Nourishing Face Balm falls into the same pattern.

The company is rooted in the ‘fundamental belief that nature knows best’ and this cleansing balm has 100 per cent natural ingredients. It is also cruelty-free, vegan, and certified organic. The cleanser contains absolutely no water and is oil-based, which helps retain and maintain your skin’s natural oils rather than dry out your face. It can be used on all skin types, but the natural oils are especially useful for hydrating and healing normal-to-dry mature skin. The formula combines the oils with shea butter and green tea extract to dissolve even stubborn waterproof mascara after a long day and leave your skin feeling soft like a baby’s the next morning. What makes this balm different is that Botanicals’ cleansing balms work deep into your pores to remove any impurities, which balance and brighten your skin. While many oil-based products scare people away, this cleansing balm leaves you feeling moisturised but not greasy.

See for yourself why this cleansing balm won for Best Organic Facial Skincare at the Natural and Organic Awards. You can purchase it here (60g) for £26.  

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The final product we have for you this Friday is the Joji Natural Frankincense and Sandalwood Oil Cleanser. We discovered this indie beauty brands earlier this year at a trade beauty show. The motto of Joji Natural is ‘Natural without compromise’. The company was founded in 2010 and is dedicated to creating handmade organic products that are effective, sustainable, cruelty-free, and fair trade.

 The oil cleanser is made of 100 per cent plant-based materials and is marketed as ‘a meditation in a bottle’. After using it, we can see why. As the name says, the product has frankincense and sandalwood. These are both natural oils that have immense therapeutic effects, leaving you less stressed and creating positive well-being. The formula also has a unique mix of jojoba, sweet almond, and apricot kernel oils, which soothe and moisturise skin without clogging your pores. This oil cleanser is essential in scrubbing away makeup and pollutants from the day, unlike regular cleansers. Many of the ingredients also have natural properties to fight bacteria, leaving your skin extra clean.

You can remove all of the cleanser with a warm cloth or leave some excess for your skin to soak up the all-natural oils, as recommended by Joji Natural. You can purchase the Frankincense and Sandalwood Oil Cleanser (50ml) here for £16.

Whether or not you have already made the switch to oil cleansers, please keep these products in mind not just for the summer but all year round. As mentioned earlier, they will not clog your pores or leave your skin feeling dry. However, what we like is that they all leave a nice layer of moisture giving you a glowy and goddess-like skin. Go try!

Hi Honey

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As we all know, the beloved bee populations in recent years has been decreasing at an alarming rate in the UK. Toxic pesticides, varroa mites and loss of habitat have threatened the fate of bee colonies and the crucial role they play in our food production. That’s why at The Amazing Blog we always try to find ways to buy bee products in order to help #savethebees. Recently, a new UK brand Hi Honey sent us four pots of their delicious honey. All with a bit of a twist with added flavours - we just couldn’t wait to try them.

Launched in August 2018, Hi Honey prides themselves on having the ‘biggest selection of pure honey with freeze-dried fruits and herbs.’ While the company is based in London, all of their pots of honey are produced and packaged in Lithuania.  They are quick to add, that their bees are only treated with ecological medications, the hives are wooden, the location of the apiaries adheres to the IKP (Exceptional Quality Product) requirements and their extraction techniques meet EU standards.  They also point out that: “The bees work for us and we work for them, and that is why we give special attention to those who cannot imagine their lives without unique, natural bee products.”

 Each of their jars contains pure honey that is infused with natural freeze-dried fruits, spices and herbs such as orange, peppermint, cinnamon and even cocoa, to name a few. Yum! We had the opportunity to try four of their exciting flavours of their delicious honey selections including their Mixed NutsBlackcurrant, Peppermint and Cinnamon, Orange & Lemon flavours. Besides being delicious, we loved that we could use all four kinds of honey to bake, marinate and glaze in different ways and recipes. A bonus is that Hi Honey has added into their packaging ideas on how to incorporate their honey into your daily recipes. We had to try them all out. For breakfast, we put the Mixed Nuts flavour into our morning porridge to give us an added sweetness and some of our daily protein. The Honey with Blackcurrant also gave a nice added sweetness to our smoothie for lunchtime. Not much of a breakfast person? Then Hi Honey recommends using their Peppermint infused honey to glaze over a lamb or pork chop. Their last honey we tried, the Cinnamon, Orange & Lemon, was a great addition to a warm slice of  apple pie.  If you want to try a new twist on your honey, visit the Hi Honey website here to purchase one of their 250 g pots for £10.99. Not sure which flavour to get? There are 3 mini sizes at 40g to mix and match that are available of each jar for £10 available here. 

Khadi's Face Masks

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The best way to start a relaxing self-care routine is with the perfect face mask. We at The Amazing Blog are always on the quest to find top quality products that work with the skin’s natural balance, so we were excited to discover Khadi, an skincare company with 100% organic and natural products.

Khadi combines Ayurvedic formulations (developed with Ayurvedic doctors), to create a strong unity of body and mind. The concept of the company was formed after one of the co-founders took a trip to India. H had always suffered with a dry and itchy scalp, a problem that was solved by using a Ayurvedic shampoo. So effective at ridding him of dandruff, he brought his findings back from India. He subsequently helped to set up the brand Khadi developing handmade herbal products like Ayurvedic shampoo, handmade soaps and skincare. Although these products are from India they are also German organically certified. All their ingredients are 100% natural made with herbal ingredients which are vegan, free of parabens and artificial ingredients. These products work with the power of India’s nature, using exotic ingredients and age old wisdom.

We tried three of their herbal face masks and were very happy with the results. Starting with our favourite one the Sandalwood, which is suitable for all skin types. We found that when using this, that our pores significantly reduced. Those of us with sensitive skin were also pleased to discover that it was particularly effective at cooling and calming the skin, even protecting against sunburn. It provides a fresh and healthy complexion, moisturising the skin and subsequently smoothing any small imperfections and wrinkles. The Orange mask is slightly sweet-scented - it immediately brightened our mood when applied. Perfect for combination skin, this mask works as a natural cleanser, helping to create a smoother complexion. It can also be used on the body, by stimulating blood circulation, helping to prevent both cellulite and bloating. Finally, the Neem mask is primarily suitable for normal to greasy skin, as it works as a natural antiseptic, preventing infections, removing toxins and restoring a natural and healthy glow. It really detoxifies your skin, freeing it from impurities, as well as refining pores. It also works to fight bacteria, leaving your skin feeling fresh, without a tight sensation.

All three herbal masks use clay as a base, which clarifies and prevents inflammation. No matter which skin-type, you will find the perfect mask to leave you feeling relaxed and fresh. By cleansing, hydrating and supporting regeneration, all three masks promote more harmonious complexion. To use, mix one teaspoon of the powdery mask with water (you can add milk for dry skin, or yoghurt for greasy skin), and apply a thin layer on face and neck (or even the body if you wish). Rinse after 15 to 20 minutes, and you’ll be greeted with a hydrated and fresher skin.

To purchase one (or all) of these face masks for yourself, click here, where you will find each Khadi Herbal Face Mask for £12.90.

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!

Cudié Chocolates

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Want to know one of our simple pleasures in life? Chocolate. We can’t get enough of it at The Amazing Blog! Who cares if you had a healthy breakfast, or which strict New Year diet you’re following, it would be rude not to indulge in a few sweet treats once in a while. We recently discovered Cudié, a company that have produced family made chocolate since 1946. Based in Vilafranca del Penedes, Spain, all recipes are a family secret - with a plethora of products, from pralines, to Marconi almonds, premium chocolates and catanies (a combination of nuts and chocolate, signature to Cudié). We therefore couldn’t wait to try the brand - all in the name of research of course!

Among the range of sweet treats, Cudié offer collections of assorted delicatessen chocolates. We tried their Mediterranean Tiles chocolate box, consisting of 6 delicious and gourmet chocolates - perfect as an evening treat, with a cup of tea (or glass of red wine). These chocolates come encased in a stylish black box, with a vibrant pink sleeve. Each chocolate is delicately decorated, with rose, coffee, salt, orange, cinnamon and hazelnut flavours to choose from. Our favourites were the coffee and cinnamon flavours. The coffee had a surprising depth of flavour, and we were thankful that it didn't have the stereotypically bitter flavour often prevalent in other coffee chocolates. The cinnamon flavour was also an interesting one, adding a bit of spice and warmth, and definitely one we weren’t expecting to like so much.

To buy a box of 6 Cudié chocolates for yourself, then click here. You will find the box available for 3,91€. Additionally, you can also buy boxes of 18 or 36 chocolates, we will certainly be purchasing a larger box next time! Click here to see the full range of Mediterranean Tiles.