Sample reviews – REN, Adore, Carmex, Egyptian Magic

Over the past few months I seem to have developed quite the collection of beauty samples. I really don’t know where they’ve all come from, but I thought it was high time I got through a few of them and told you what I thought.

Adore Nourishing Hand and Body Lotion

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This is a brand that I’ve never seen anywhere, apart from a shop near Bond Street where they tried to convince me I needed to spend £100 on some exfoliator that didn’t actually do anything. I picked this up on my way out, and I have to say, it doesn’t really do anything either. It smells horrible – I can’t stand white musk, and this is the muskiest of them allIt’s a light lotion that absorbs fine, but it doesn’t do anything else. Glad I saw through their sales pitch! Want a quality hand cream that smells gorgeous and actually moisturises? Check this one out!

REN Ross Centifolia Cleansing Gel

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A while ago I asked REN for a sample of one of their masks, as I wasn’t sure how my skin would react to it, but they sent me this instead. Well, it was free I suppose, but I can’t help but think they shot themselves in the foot slightly by sending me something completely unsuitable for my skin, instead of the thing I already wanted to buy. Unsurprisingly, I did not get on with this one bit, it made my skin very flaky, tight, and didn’t leave it feeling the slightest bit clean. Although it smells beautiful, it has a strange gel like consistency that doesn’t later or spread out over the skin very easily. All in all, not a fan.

Carmex

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Isn’t this adorable? They were handing them out in Westfield Stratford City on Valentine’s Day. I had forgotten that Carmex even existed, and after opening one of these up I remembered how much I love it, and went out to buy a tube. So if you’re reading this Carmex, your Valentine’s Day marketing was a success! Though I’m sure you already knew that 🙂

Egyptian Magic All Purpose Skin Cream

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I’ve read a lot of rave reviews, and I’ve read a lot of ‘what on earth is all the fuss about’ reviews. I fall squarely in the second category. The simple ingredients sound great on paper – with all those bee products they’re certainly doing the worldwide insect population some favours. I’ve tried it on as many things as I can – spots, dry patches, hands, hair and a small bit of my body (I only got a small sachet!) and it hasn’t had any affect at all. Very disappointed, as I like simple things like this. Oh well.

Have you tried any samples recently? Anything you bought after trying it out? I have loads more samples in the works so I’d love to know if you like this kind of post – I’ll do more if so 🙂

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Hand Cream Review: Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Concentrated Cream

Next up in my quest for the perfect hand cream collection is the lovely Cocoa Butter Formula Concentrated Cream by Palmer’s. This is also available in their Olive Butter Formula (I would love to try that one too, but I must say I really hope they do a Coconut Milk version someday!) I feel like I haven’t been doing much beauty blogging recently – but what can I say, the jungle is a compulsive topic. I’ve recently changed almost all of my beauty routine anyway so I’m still working out how I feel about it all (feeling good though so new posts soon!)

This is a quick post because there isn’t much to say about this super simple, seriously effective hand cream. It’s easily absorbed, long lasting, and feels great going on. I love it, and I think its perfect for summer because it has that gorgeous cocoa butter scent.

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I like that cocoa extract is the second ingredient after water, because their expert use of plant butters and oils is the reason I’ve always loved Palmer’s – they’ve saved my hair and skin on countless occasions! This cream also contains vitamin C which is great for protecting the skin.

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Love the colour. This cream is really thick but light at the same time, and it absorbs so quickly. Ideal for using at your desk! It does have a slight scent of mineral oil to it, but its paraben and pthalate free – all things considered, this is a great hand cream. I find that it gives immediate relief when my hands are really dry, and it carries on working for ages. And even better…its only £2.13 from Boots!

Hand Cream Review: Neutrogena Hand Cream with Nordic Berry – and some news!

First things first, I want to introduce a new idea to the blog. I have very very dry hands, they always have been and always will be, and many of my family members are the same. In winter out hands have been known to crack until they bleed, which is always fun. Not. This has obviously led to a constant stream of hand creams coming in and out of my life, from thick natural balms to heavy duty nasties like E45 (never again). So I thought it would be nice if I review hand creams as I try them, because if they work for me they’re probably going to work for you too! I’ll also categorise them under Hand Creams so if you’re ever in the market for a new one, you can easily have a look through past reviews.

So, on to the hand cream – Neutrogena Hand Cream with Nordic Berry.

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Unfortunately there isn’t much to say about this hand cream. It does smell absolutely divine, I’ll give it that. Cloudberries must be delicious, because the Kopparberg cider with cloudberry flavouring is seriously good, and this stuff, scent wise, is gorgeous. I originally had the Nordic Berry lipbalm, which was actually really really good, but one of the ingredients was hydrogenated vegetable oil?! So stupid, putting trans fats in the one skincare products you actually end up ingesting. I threw it out as soon as I realised but I did miss the gorgeous scent, which was why I jumped on this hand cream as soon as I saw it. The cream has hydrogenated vegetable oil in it too, but I’m hoping that the absorption of product doesn’t work that way…

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It’s quite a thick, yet light cream, and takes a bit of time to absorb – as you rub it in you’re left with a thin oil that actually feels a bit like alcohol. Sounds weird, I know, but I’m just trying to describe it in detail. If you’ve ever used a dry oil like almond oil, its similar to that but not as thick. The moisturisers are actually shea butter, hydrogenated vegetable oil, and paraffin, no almond oil to be seen. As far as I can tell from the ingredients there are no parabens which is a bonus. However, although my hands are moisturised, I wouldn’t say they’re soft. The moisture doesn’t last for very long, and it leaves a slightly sticky film over my hands which is really annoying (and no, not all hand creams do this).

If you’re looking for a cheap, fairly effective, nicely scented hand cream to keep in your bag, Neutrogena Hand Cream with Nordic Berry is for you. Otherwise, its not worth the effort.

And now for a bit of news! I spend a fair amount of time talking about the Amazon Rainforest and what an amazing place it is. I get a bit paranoid that I talk too much about it actually. However, while I was there, a film crew were making a TV show, and that TV show is going to start on Sunday 1st June on BBC2 at 8pm. It’s called I Bought a Rainforest, and part of it is going to feature the reserve that I volunteered at. I’m really excited to see what Charlie and his team have made, and will be writing a few posts about the rainforest to go along with it. (FYI: I am in no way affiliated with any of the film makers, companies or the charities involved, I am doing this purely as a person with stories to tell)

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If you want to read a bit more about the show, and the area of the Amazon Rainforest that it’s set in, here’s some links:

Charlie Hamilton James

CREES Foundation

I Bought a Rainforest