Tuesday, 8 April 2014

KLORANE Nettle Shampoo Review.

KLORANE Nettle Shampoo, beauty blog, shampoo for oily hair, KLORANE shampoo, eco friendly shampoo

KLORANE Nettle Shampoo, beauty blog, shampoo for oily hair, KLORANE shampoo, eco friendly shampoo

KLORANE Nettle Shampoo, beauty blog, shampoo for oily hair, KLORANE shampoo, eco friendly shampoo

A little while ago I was contacted to review a shampoo for oily hair which promised to decrease the amount of times you wash your hair in the week. Now, I wash my hair every two days, by which point it is already looking a bit bleugh and greasy. I try to leave it alone on weeks where I'm off work or lazy weekends, just so that my hair can have a break and use the natural oils to nourish itself. Naturally I was interested in this French product as I would LOVE to find a shampoo which helps me add at least another day onto my non-washing schedule and here it is: KLORANE Nettle Shampoo.

I have been testing this shampoo for a couple of months now so I am confident in my verdict and how it reacts with my hair. Here is what KLORANE say about their shampoo with extracts of nettle:

"The nettle is a European perennial plant belonging to the Urticaceae family. It is traditionally used as an astringent and reinvigorator. We selected Urtica dioica L. species because it is rich in scopoletine, a polycyclic compound that acts on the enzyme that regulates sebaceous secretions. It is cultivated in Eastern Europe using techniques that respect the surrounding ecosystem. The quality of the plants harvested is controlled according to KLORANE Phytofiliere specifications. The roots of the plant are collected and left to dry naturally in the sun. We then concentrate the active agent in the form of an extract, which is incorporated in KLORANE shampoo with nettle. This shampoo very gently and naturally controls oil, and prevents hair from becoming greasy too quickly. Hair is supple and light."
In short - nettle can help control the natural oils in your hair, and this brand is eco friendly.

KLORANE pride themselves on plant heritage and preservation, and even host workshops for children in partnerships with botanical gardens which is called "Discover the Plant". They also use only non endangered species of plants and ensure the eco system is balanced when cultivating the plants. A winner with any eco warrior or anyone who genuinely cares about the environment and takes care of our planet.

Now for the important stuff: did it work? Well, the shampoo itself is pleasant to use - it lathers nicely, has a fresh smell and is easy as well as quick to wash off. The first couple of times I used it, I didn't use a conditioner as I wanted to see what it does to my hair - the result was it left it quite dry but thats OK because it does say you can use your usual condition after the wash so that's what I did. After blow drying, my hair felt fresh and light, and I could even get away without washing my hair for that one extra day. It wasn't the miracle shampoo which will help you go 4 or even 5 days without washing your locks, but it's a more natural way of keeping clean and fresh rather than dry shampoo the last day.

Here's a few tips of how to keep your hair grease free for a little longer:

  • Try and not touch your hair i.e. swipe it from side to side or hold your fringe when looking down at a paper: the more you play with your hair, the more oils you will acquire and the greasier your hair will look;
  • Be light on the amount of products you use, as they will build up and although your hair will look fantastic the first day, after a good nights sleep you hair do will be no longer yet the grease will gather up;
  • Avoid straightening hair every day as the heat from the straighteners will produce more grease;
  • Give your hair a break: if you're on a week off, or having a lazy weekend, let your hair do it's own thing and have a natural break. Once you've washed it on Monday morning your hair will look and feel fantastic! 

Vichy Normaderm Moisturiser Review.

Vichy Normaderm, beauty blog, sensitive skin moisturiser, Normaderm, skincare blog

Vichy Normaderm, beauty blog, sensitive skin moisturiser, Normaderm, skincare blog

Vichy Normaderm, beauty blog, sensitive skin moisturiser, Normaderm, skincare blog

It's not a secret that I have problematic skin, as do a lot of young people these days due to lifestyle, food choices and stress. Skin tends to look tired doesn't feel great either, but what can we do if we don't have the luxury of living next to the ocean, sipping green tea's and feasting on avocados and oily fish all day long? We can protect our skin, even living in polluted cities with jobs that require extreme amounts of coffee and less than recommended amounts of sleep.

I struggle to find good moisturisers and usually when I do I stick with them for years, until my skin gets so used to them - they eventually stop working. I have heard a lot about the Vichy Normaderm moisturiser which promises to eliminate blemishes and shine, minimise pores, and fix irregular complexion as well as imperfection marks. It is non comedogenic, hypoallergenic and paraben free which makes it a moisturiser suitable for sensitive skin, with the added benefits of Vichy Thermal Spa Water which has soothing effects on skin.
When I read the labels on Vichy's skincare products, I always think "Wow, these guys must be miracle workers - if successful." But how do they give your skin the all round, or global - as they call it, anti-imperfection hydrating care? The magical combination of this unique potion are 3 peeling active ingredients: Salicylic Acid, Glycolic Acid and LHA. Now we already know about LHA from my previous post on Vichy products which acts similarly to salicylic acid but has antibacterial, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory purposes. Salicylic acid is a well known ingredient for anyone who suffers from acne - I remember during my teen years it was the hit ingredient in any product recommended by a dermatologist. Salicylic acid causes the cells of the epidermis to shed readily, opens clogged up pores and neutralises bacteria which makes it easier for new cells to grow. Glycolic acid on the other hand is a chemical which is used in many chemical skin peels as it is known for reducing wrinkles, acne scars or any other imperfection by penetrating the skin and helping cells shed.

This combination of extremely effective ingredients sets Vichy Normaderm apart from many other moisturisers on the high street. From the first week I could see, and feel, the effects of this product on my skin. I have now been using it for about a month and it has become my go to moisturiser. Normaderm is a perfect base for makeup, it's not greasy or sticky and your skin truly feels like it can breathe under this product. Here's a little confession: sometimes when I get home late, I'm too tired to go and take off my makeup. It's horrible, no one should ever do it - but it happens. Of course the next day I wake up with a number of spots, clogged up pores and generally hideous looking skin. After a deep cleanse and two days worth of application of Normaderm, my skin is glowing and blemish free. I give it a massive 10/10 and I would recommend this product as a daily moisturiser.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Vichy IDEALIA Life Serum review.

A couple of weeks ago, I was really nicely surprised by my Liam when he came back from a quick trip to the shops and picked me up a couple of Vichy skincare products - I think he's trying to tell me something about personal appearances... :) Seriously though, the boy knows how to pick products and I think I'm just going to ask him to pick out my skincare items for me from now on.
I have always been a fan of Vichy as I have found all the products which I have used from the brand works exactly as promised, and recently I've been having an absolute nightmare with my skin so I got really excited about trying out some new things which are meant to make it look and feel better. I'll start with this Idelia Life Serum which evens and illuminates the complexion and provides the look of well rested facial features - perfect for anyone who has late nights, or works in front of a screen. It promises to improve skin which is affected by daily problems such as: stress and tiredness; UV damage; pollution and smoke; and even skin affected by an unbalanced diet. Sounds brilliant, and what's even better is that you can use it on sensitive skin as it's hypoallergenic, paraben free and it contains Vichy Thermal Spa Water which is set to calm skin down.

This product is described by Vichy as an innovation: 11 years of research created the first skin serum with [LR 2412 + LHA] complex which promotes "good skin behaviour'. I did some research for you ladies as I have no idea what this complex is, but with big name brands such as Vichy, Lancome and L'Oreal raving about it I thought it must be good. So, LR 2412 is a molecule which mimics an acid used by plants (jasmonic acid) which helps the plan repair itself and helps it become more resistant to tissue damage. LHA on the other hand works quite similarly to salicylic acid, used in a number of products which help troubled skin such as acne by decreasing the concentration of bacteria from within the pores. It also has antibacterial, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory purposes, again great for problem skin. So with a complex like this, the Vichy Idealia Life Serum is set to be a hit.

This serum can be used by itself or underneath your usual moisturiser which is what I do as I find then you only need a tiny bit of each and it helps the products last for longer! The serum itself is a shiny, pearly looking substance which spreads easily, sinks in and leaves skin feel soft and smooth but not greasy. The product promises immediate results, with a noticeable difference in 4 weeks, but I've only been using this product for around a week and a half and I already notice a big difference in my skin. From having quite a lot of breakouts (stress spots, grrrr....) and uneven skin, I've gone to having a brighter looking, smoother complexion. I am using this serum in together with the Vichy Purete Thermale One Step Cleanser and Vichy Normaderm Hydrating Care which I definitely think contribute to the success of my skin, but the serum is something wonderful.

I would recommend investing in this beauty miracle because it's not just great for general care, but it's also great under makeup as it helps illuminate the skin and make it glow without being shiny. I've even switched to wearing a very low coverage foundation as I just feel like I don't need to cake my face when my skin is doing great!

What do you guys think? Do you have a miracle beauty product which you could rave on about? I'd love to know!

Monday, 17 February 2014

Puffy The Eye Bag Slayer Review.

FashionFake, Anatomicals, under eye bags, beauty blog

FashionFake, Anatomicals, under eye bags, beauty blog

FashionFake, Anatomicals, under eye bags, beauty blog

FashionFake, Anatomicals, under eye bags, beauty blog
Anatomicals "Puffy The Eye Bag Slayer" wake-up under eye patches £6 for box of 3 at ASOS.com

Eye bags are the enemy for a high percentage of us, both men and women. I have been fighting mine for several months now as my sleeping patterns have changed, I've been a little stressed out and have fought off several bugs, as well as surviving several late nights and early mornings. Because I spend a lot of time working on the computer, eye bags is something I just have to learn to deal with most of the time. But when the culprit has been something less ordinary, like a few cocktails with some old friends or prep for a presentation which has kept you up all night there are beauty products which can help you eliminate the puffiness of the bags - Puffy The Eye Bag Slayer is one of them. Created by Anatomicals who are known for their fun packaging and affordable price, these under eye patches are easy to stick on in the morning whilst you're munching down on your cereal and getting dressed. Each packet contains two self-adhesive patches which easily cling on to the skin under your eyes and all you've got to do is keep them on for about 30 minutes et voila! Under eye bags are promised to calm down and reduce.

I tried these patches a week ago and I found them extremely easy to use. I hate products that I have to faff about with - Puffy The Eye Bag Slayer patches literally just whack on to your skin and you're done. I did some housework whilst I had these bad boys on and they didn't slip off once, bonus! They have a cooling effect which was really nice on tired eyes, probably my favourite part of the product. My eyes definitely felt fresher once I took the patches off, and I'm pretty sure the puffiness did go down a little, but as I mentioned I have had a couple of really full on weeks so I wouldn't expect this product to produce miracles. I've got a couple of packets left and I'm most definitely going to use them after nights out or long working days - it's a bathroom essential and a perfect accompaniment to your prep for an evening out.

Do you have any miracle cures for puffy eye bags? Share with the world!

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Nouris Pure and Organic Beauty Oils.

natural beauty oil, organic beauty oil, fashionfake, nouris oil, beauty blog
natural beauty oil, organic beauty oil, fashionfake, nouris oil, beauty blog, rose hip oil
natural beauty oil, organic beauty oil, fashionfake, nouris oil, beauty blog, monoi oil
natural beauty oil, organic beauty oil, fashionfake, nouris oil, beauty blog, argan oil
natural beauty oil, organic beauty oil, fashionfake, nouris oil, beauty blog
from left: Rosehip Oil* £11.50 // Monoi Oil* £10.95 // Argan Oil* £10.49

A couple of weeks ago I got an opportunity to review these organic oils by a new company called Nouris, whom I haven't heard of before. As you know from my previous posts, I like beauty oils especially if they are organic and natural. I was really looking forward to reviewing these products as the argan and rosehip oil boast to be 100% pure and certified organic, great right? And with a n average price tag, this almost seems to goo to be true. 
I tested the oils for two weeks, and here are my final conclusions: 

Rosehip Oil: 
This oil is 100% pure and natural, and it comes from the warm Southern Chile where rosehip grows in the wild. The suppliers used by Nouris are totally ethical, and the product is IMO and NOP certified organic. The oil is cold pressed, filtered and packed under nitrogen conditions which ensures the freshness of the oil and it's ability to maintain nutrients for the skin. It is rich in essential fatty acids and natural anti-oxidants! 
Rosehip oil is used to reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and scars as well as hydrating itchy and dry skin. I'm going to put something out there before I carry on - I don't like the smell. I thought the smell of rosehip oil might represent the scent of a rose somehow, don't ask me why I know it doesn't, but I found it smelled a little bit like dried fish food. Which to be fair lasted only a couple of seconds whilst I was rubbing it into my face where I have some acne scars and it faded almost immediately, so it;s not a big issue - but seriously don't expect it to smell good. Unless you like dried insects. The oil gently nourishes and moisturises the skin, I applied it before bed and also in the morning if I had a day off or on the weekends. It's definitely brightened up my skin tone, I won't judge it on the appearance of scars just yet as I think this will take a month or so to really show the results, but I'm also starting to use it on other places of my body where I have slight scarring or stretch marks (because believe it or not, most women will have a stretch mark or five at some point in their life). 
I rate this oil 7/10, mainly because I am yet to judge the effect of rose hip on scars and also the scent. 

Monoi Oil: 
I wasn't quite sure what monoi oil was so I had to look it up and here is what I found: the Nouris Monoi Oil comes from Tahiti and is produced by soaking fresh Tiare Tahiti flowers in oi extracted from coconut trees native to the South Pacific Islands. The oil is infused with frangipani flowers, which gives it the delicate floral aroma. The Nouris Monoi oil also has Appellation d'Origine which guarantees the quality and authenticity of this oil. 
This oil comes in the form of something resembling wax, so you have to run it under a hot tap or place in a bowl or warm water to get it to loosen up. It hydrates dry skin and is advised to be rubbed into the body. I loved using it as a hair treatment, once the oil is runny, rub a little amount into your scalp and hair and leave for about 30 minutes. Then rinse off and shampoo as usual! Something that sets this oil apart is the scent of frangipani - oh my dear heavens. I could sit and sniff this bottle for hours - please don't though, people might think you're strange. The frangipani scent is exactly as described: delicate, fragrant, floral with a hint of tropical fruits. This oil is brilliant to use if you're giving your SO a massage as you'll enjoy the scent as much as they enjoy the rubdown! And of course, the hydrating benefits of the oil will perk up the skin.
I rate this oil 9/10 because it smells like heaven. I took a mark away because I don't like messing about getting it to melt, but that's just because I'm impatient. 

Argan Oil:
Last but most definitely not least is this argan beauty. Produced in South West Morocco, this 100% pure argan oil is a gift to hair and eco lovers. It is Ecocert and AB certified organic, and the Argan seeds of the plant are pressed immediately after extraction to ensure freshness of the oil which is rich in Vitamin E, Omega 6 and natural anti-oxidants. 
Argan Oil boomed a couple of years ago and became all the rage in the beauty world, which has recently seemed to calm down. In my opinion that is mainly because high street retailers put the tiniest bit of Argan oil in their products and claim for it to be a miracle worker. I have used Argan oil products before and I have to say, at first I was impressed but then it was more like "Well, whats the difference between Argan Oil and the other hair oils available?!" Until this entered my life. I have not used it on my skin, which you can do especially if you want to nourish your hands and nails, but I save this for my unruly locks. I have had problems with dry hair ever since I ombre-d my ends and recently they've been looking worse for wear. I applied the Argain Oil as a harm mask and leave it in for a minimum of 30 minutes before washing my hair as usual. The results are stunning. I cannot event tell you how soft my hair is, even if I do this mask once a week. My boyfriend has noticed a massive difference in how soft all of my hair is, even the ombre-d ends which are looking even lighter! I can rave about this oil until the cows come home - I absolutely love it. I am a complete convert, but I don't want to be purchasing any of the high street alternatives thank you, I'm sticking to this pure formula which to me is a complete miracle product and a must have for anyone with hair.
I rate this oil 100/10 because it fixed my hair when I thought I was going to be forced into having it snipped off. Thank you, I love you.

Do you guys use beauty oils? Does it matter to you if products are organic, pure or natural? I'd love to know! 

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Product Review: Area H2O Hard Water Shampoo and Conditioner

FashionFake, Area H2O shampoo review, beauty blog

FashionFake, Area H2O shampoo review, beauty blog

FashionFake, Area H2O shampoo review, beauty blog

FashionFake, Area H2O shampoo review, beauty blog

FashionFake, Area H2O shampoo review, beauty blog

I was one of the lucky first blogger who got to try out the new range of shampoo by Area H2O - a shampoo and conditioner that is designed to react with the type of water you have in your area. I live in Hampshire, and the water in my area is hard - I constantly get annoying little white marks all over my shower door, it's a ridiculous chore and I hate removing them but that's for another topic. Area H2O shampoos were created by biochemists and is designed to cleanse your hair of natural mineral deposits which occur when you wash your hair with hard water. Some of the effects hard water has on your hair are:

  • hair remains dry even after being treated with an intense conditioner; 
  • hair may tangle excessively after you wash it;
  • colour will fade quicker;
  • hair will be damaged, even if you treat it with protein treatments; 
  • styling products may no longer work if you have moved to a hard water area.
My hair has been dry and lifeless for quite some time now, and treatments which worked magically before suddenly had no effect at all. I thought I killed it when I decided to ombre my hair, and the bleach had finally finished my locks. But even after a hair trim, and various treatments - there was no change. I never realised just how much hard water affects hair! 

I started using Area H2O about a week ago, so I've washed my hair about 3/4 times during that week. Oh. My. Jesus. My hair, is unrecognisable. From the first wash, I didn't really notice much of a difference but it was the second and third washes that really showed results. By the fourth wash, I had silky, glossy, weightless hair. I had less flyaways and my hair was super smooth, with the colour radiating through. Sounds like a fairytale, right? Well take it from a girl who thought that I would have to resort to getting a bob - I love bobs, but I'm not ready for one just yet - and this has rescued my locks. I would recommend this shampoo until the cows come home - if you go on the Area H2O website, you can find out what water is like in your area! When I was in Scotland, which has soft water, I loved taking a shower and washing my hair as you can immediately tell the difference. Drinking it was certainly a lot more pleasant than drinking water back home.

So, here is the solution to all my hair problems in two wonderful tubs. I cannot thank Area H2O enough for introducing me to this product because it is truly a miracle product which should be in the bathrooms of every hard water resident. 

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

The Big Debate: Would You Put Your Blog on Your CV?

FashionFake, should I include my blog on my cv

I'm going to let you in on a little mission of mine: I am currently on the hunt for my perfect job. After working freelance for several months, some things in life came up for which I need to have a steady income, rather than a variable amount month on month, and also (I don't know if other freelancers will agree) I'm driving myself insane working from home. I'm a social creature and I enjoy life more when I'm surrounded by other creative individuals. So I've updated my CV and whilst doing so, a question suddenly arose: do I, or do I not put my blog on my CV?

FashionFake started as a hobby, I was so inspired by some of the blogs I was reading a couple of years ago that I wanted to see how I'd measure up in the bloggosphere. I quickly made some amazing blogger buddies which is the main reason why I'm still blogging (share the blogger love, y'all!) but I also quickly gained the attention of beauty and fashion companies. Once I started blogging for companies and specific products, I started taking FashionFake more seriously - I had commitments to the brands that I'd chosen to work with. My blog also helps me keep up to date with social media trends, new platforms, SEO skills, website management (because who else is going to fix your blog when things go wrong?! Unlike a company, we don't have outsourced providers at the other end of the phone!) which of course includes HTML, audience awareness... The list goes on and on, so your blog is actually a lot more than just you standing around in pretty frocks or chatting about the latest lipgloss from Rimmel: it's a hobby that utilises precious skills in the digital media.

That same day, whilst waiting for Liam to show up so we can go and watch Devils Due, I accidentally stumbled across the evenings #fblchat and the topic was...Would You Put Your Blog on Your CV? It couldn't have been more perfect as I'd spent the last couple of hours pondering that question. I started off by joining the chat and saying that "actually, no I wouldn't" but I was proven wrong by some very clever ladies who pointed out some great points about why your blog contributes to your professional development:

And they are exactly right. My blog DOES reach a global audience and when I look at my stats I'm constantly happily surprised from which parts of the world my hits come from! Who my main readership is (thank you all for reading by the way, it means the world! No pun intended :)), what are range is looking as what posts, do they read it via their phone/computer/tablet? I look at these statistics every week and think about what was successful in my blog - how is that any different than when I analyse an audience report using a software which belongs to my company? I'm only furthering my knowledge and skills, but doing so in my own free time. Not to mention creative writing skills, copy editing too? With the implementation of SEO? Online marketing, PR, social media - you name it! We all want our blogs to be seen and it takes a lot for your blog to stand out in a sea of 200 million (estimated, but true figure) blogs in the world. It is a FACT that the majority of an audience will believe peer recommendations, rather than a brand ad in a magazine or on TV, which makes bloggers the biggest advocates of products and trends.

For some, their blog is their career. It's rare to find but it happens. For some, a blog is their professional portfolio where they display past work, collages, styling photographs and other professional items which will help them display their work. For most, blogging is a community, a hobby no different than going to a book club or being an enthusiastic cuisine connoisseur. But underneath, for all, a blog is a lot more work than we give it credit for.

I have decided that I will place my blog in my CV - under my interests and hobbies. However, the skills that I practice every day, the new skills that I learn because I have to to keep up to date with digital media, those skills are going under in my professional CV.
What are your thoughts on this topic? Would you put your blog on your CV?