Hylamide Low Molecular HA – Review

I wanted to talk about my new favourite hyaluronic acid serum! This is the Hylamide Low-Molecular HA Booster (RRP £18). Hyaluronic acid is a popular skincare ingredient that we do have in our bodies naturally but when used topically it can really help to hydrate the skin! I have used two other serums with a notable amount of hyaluronic acid in them – Hydraluron Moisture Boosting Facial Serum (RRP £24.99) and First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Hydrating Serum (£22.50) – however this one from Hylamide is definitely the one I have personally found most effective in terms of hydration.

I really like the look of the packaging, it looks very high-tech and scientific! I’m not completely sold on the pipette dispenser, but it has come in handy now that I’m running very low on the serum as I can use it to suck up the last bit at the bottom. When it was new I just tended to wipe off the excess on the pipette and use that as opposed to squeezing it out – looking back this probably wasn’t the most hygienic thing I could have done lol. I’ve gotten used to the pipette now so it doesn’t put me off repurchasing it but I do always prefer a pump.

The serum itself is more liquid that the other two hyaluronic serums I’ve tried (mentioned in the intro) that were more gel-like. I think I prefer it being more liquid as I reckon this is partly why I have found it so hydrating. Having said this it’s still by no means incredibly runny and doesn’t move like water, it still clings to the pipette and is not drippy.

The more I’ve used it the more I’ve found that a little can go a long way. At first I was probably using too much and I could have made the bottle last a lot longer. Using it both morning and evening on most days, I reckon by the time I’ve finished the bottle it will have lasted about 2 .5-3 months which is not bad for a product that RRP’s at £18 and that you can often use discount codes on.

I have definitely noticed a difference in the hydration of my skin since using this serum. The texture when applied to your face is initially a bit sticky but it sinks in very quickly allowing you to apply your moisturiser. When I’ve used this I no longer wake up with ‘tight’ feeling skin in the morning which is great! Maybe the 5 forms of hyaluronic compounds said to be within this serum are the secret to its effective skin quenching abilities!

I definitely recommend trying this if you think you have dehydrated skin, which you can have with any skin type, even if you’re oily!

Love Nicole xxxx

Follow me on Bloglovin!

Current Skincare Routine

This Sunday I thought I would talk about one of my favourite things: skincare. I’m pretty happy with my current routine but I’ll explain any products that I’m not particularly taken with and wouldn’t recommend or buy again. I always make sure to use products up as I absolutely hate waste! Unless they’re causing me some kind of bad reaction then I use everything.

I am using different products for my morning routine and my evening routine so I will go through them separately! Just as an FYI, I have normal/dehydrated/spot prone skin.

current skincare routine normal dry dehydrated skin pixi glow tonic boots botanics rose water toning spritz first aid beauty serum paulas choice spf 25 skin recovery daily moisturizer

Morning Routine

The cleanser I am using in the mornings at the moment is the Superdrug Clearly Youthful Cream Cleanser (£3.69). I was excited to try this as it has AHAs/BHAs in it which are great for gentle exfoliation and of course, it’s a fantastically affordable price! Unfortunately, I don’t personally enjoy using it and I find it stings my face and feels quite harsh. I’ve not had any horrible reaction to it, it just doesn’t feel nice to me. However, I think this would probably be great for people with oily and/or more mature skin.

I then go in with a cotton pad soaked with Pixi Glow Tonic (£18) all over my face. This is a lovely gentle exfoliating toner that I didn’t find drying. I didn’t experience any miraculous results from it but I will definitely buy it again as I do think it helped to keep my skin smooth and keep spots in check.

Next, I use about four spritzes of Botanics 100% Organic Rosewater Toning Spritz (£4) all over my face. I recently did a whole post dedicated to this product, which you can read here. This adds some hydration and refreshment.

For my serum I am using the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Hydrating Serum (£26). I chose to buy this after reading a very positive review on Paula’s Choice. I have to say I agree with most of it now I’ve used it! It’s a very refreshing gel formula that has good ingredients to help improve your skin’s condition. It does initially quench dehydration however for me it’s definitely not enough on it’s own and I still need extra moisture from a moisturiser or oil. According to Paula’s Choice though it has excellent anti-oxidants so that’s a big plus.

The eye cream I’m using, which seems to be never ending and is lasting for ages, is the First Aid Beauty 5 in 1 Eye Cream (£23). It has a nice, almost velvety smooth feel to it which makes application very pleasant however it’s hard to notice with eye creams whether they’re actually doing anything. It hydrates which is the main thing but I’ve already bought a different eye cream to try once this one is empty. I’d like to try something that can help brighten the under-eye area.

Lastly for my morning routine is my moisturiser. It contains SPF which is now an absolute must for me as I’ve pledged to use SPF everyday but I can’t be bothered with having a separate SPF. It is the Paula’s Choice Skin Recovery Daily Moisturizing Lotion SPF30 (£28). I’m planning on doing a whole separate post on this product but I really like it and this is my second tube. It’s a thick, whipped, creamy texture with mineral/physical SPF protection. This means it’s gentler and generally safer and suitable for sensitive skin. I hugely recommend and we should all be wearing SPF daily if we want our skin to age well.

boots micellar water alpha h liquid gold hydraluron indeed labs face theory lush aroma toning water trilogy make up be gone cleansing balm

Evening Routine

For that initial makeup removal I use a micellar water. The one pictured here that I’m currently using is Boots Time Delay Daily Cleansing Micellar Cleansing Water (£4.49). I am not a fan of this as I don’t feel it’s particularly effective at removing makeup and it really stings my eyes! I will not repurchase this. My favourite is still Botanics Hydration Burst 3 in 1 Micellar Cleanser (£4).

For my evening cleanse I am using Trilogy Make-Up Be Gone Cleansing Balm (£20.50). Again, I hope to do a whole individual post on this product where I can properly rave about it. If you love cleansing balms like the ones from Emma Hardie or Elemis, or you wish you could try them but find them just too expensive, this is a fantastic value alternative. I appreciate it’s still not super cheap but with deals and discount codes you can easily get this for around £15 like I did and it’s beautiful!

Now’s my exfoliation step where if I’m not using Pixi Glow Tonic or if I feel like my skin is crappy and needs something more powerful, I will use Alpha-H Liquid Gold (£33.50). This is my second bottle of it which I got in a supersize 200ml. If my skin really needs help I will apply Liquid Gold with a cotton pad and leave it there as regards to my skincare for the night. This gives an intensive treatment and it’s one of the few products that when I wake up in the morning after using it, I feel I genuinely notice a positive difference; my skin just looks brighter and more refined with less redness.

If I’m not going for an ‘intense treatment’ then I have been following the exfoliating toner step with Lush Eau Roma Toning Water (£4.50). This is nice to use in the evening as the lavender scent is relaxing, however, while this may be the case I’m not a huge lavender lover so I’m not sure I’d buy this again.

I then use Indeed Labs hydraluron™ moisture boosting facial serum (£24.99). I really like this and have to say I find it more hydrating than the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Hydrating Serum that I use in my morning routine. Again, it’s a water based gel formula containing hyaluronic acid. It has relatively few ingredients which I like however this does mean it lacks the anti-oxidants of the First Aid Beauty offering. I quite like having both of them though and utilising the anti-oxidants of the First Aid Beauty one in the day time and then using the more hydrating Hydraluron over night.

Next I follow up with the same eye cream as my morning routine.

Lastly, as a night time moisturiser I am using Face Theory’s Relaxing Night Cream M10 (£10.99) which contains 1% Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin C, Vitamin E and Argan Oil. I like this a lot and the formula and ingredients are great. A little goes a long way. It’s very rich so ideal for normal-dry skin but probably not for oilier complexions. Face Theory are a small UK based company and it’s nice to support businesses like that, especially if they have great products with good ingredients at affordable prices.

Love Nicole xxxx

Blogging every day in October! (Or trying to)

Follow me on Bloglovin!

Save

Naturisimo Beauty Haul

In my quest to lead a more healthy lifestyle, I want to gradually introduce more and more natural products into my beauty regime. Naturisimo.com is such a great website that makes doing that so easy; this was the first time I used the site and I got great value for money and super quick delivery.

jason tea tree shampoo a'kin conditioner odyliqye moisturiser laidbare vitamin c serum antipodes joyous night lily lolo eyeliner eye liner

Jason Normalizing Tea Tree Treatment Shampoo £6.99

Shampoo is an easy thing to swap for a more natural alternative. I wash my hair roughly every 4 days and towards day 3-4 my hair starts to get pretty itchy so I thought a tea tree shampoo might do my scalp some good and keep the itchiness at bay. I haven’t tried this yet but the bottle is huuuge so let’s hope I like it as it’s going to last me ages.

A’kin Macadamia & Wheat Conditioner for Dry Hair £8.90

My hair’s main concern is dryness so I always go for conditioners aimed at dry/damaged hair. I’ve used this once and it was a thinner consistency than I’m used to however it was very nourishing and it just felt…natural, which was great! Unfortunately for someone like me who uses lots of conditioner every time I wash my hair, this lil bottle will not last me long 🙁 I reckon 3 applications, 4 if I’m lucky.

Lily Lolo Eyeliner Pencil £6.99

My super sensitive eyes were being a pain in the ass and watering sooo much every day so I was trying to figure out what was causing it. I thought a new natural eyeliner wouldn’t hurt so I got this one which is very nice and black! However I later established that the culprit was my moisturiser (Good Things Manuka Honey Daily Moisturiser) which I have now had to stop using 🙁

Odylique Avocado 24 Hour Replenishing Cream £22

The next three purchases were all intended to combat my dehydrated feeling skin. The moisturiser I was using at night prior to this just wasn’t cutting it so I wanted to buy a new one. As I use this at night, I can’t say what it’s like under makeup. My assumption would be not great as it’s quite rich and oily. As a night cream thought I have been loving it, in conjunction with the other products I bought (below). I no longer wake up with a tight feeling face. I like that it’s in a pump as it’s much more hygienic than all the moisturisers around that are in tubs. It does have a bit of a funky smell but that doesn’t really bother me as I view it as demonstrating how beautiful and natural it is!

Laidbare From Dusk Till Dawn Vitamin C Serum

I know how beneficial Vitamin C can be for skin so when I saw this for an awesome price along with some other great ingredients, I just had to try it! I’ve only used it a couple of times as I have been using the Antipodes one (see below) more, but it seems good. It’s a very oily formula which surprised me when I first pressed the pump as I was expecting something more creamy! The packaging is basic but good, however I have already cracked the plastic lid that protects the pump lol. I’ll give it a proper trial run once I’ve done likewise with the Antipodes one.

Antipodes Joyous Night Replenish Serum £24.99

Last but not least I picked up this similarly oily serum. It comes in a pipette bottle and is a real pleasure to use. Both these serums are great for a facial massage whenever you want to treat yourself to one. I wanted to try an Antipodes serum after enjoying using their Manuka Honey Mask so much (which I spoke about a bit here). Naturismo are selling this one for such a good price too, £24.99, whereas the RRP is £38.99! That pulled me in probably more than it should of haha. Overall though, this in conjunction with the moisturiser has really helped get rid of that feeling of dehydration.

Do you have any natural products that you swear by?

Love Nicole

xxxx

Follow Me On Bloglovin

Save

Save

Save

Beauty Splurges

After Christmas and my birthday on boxing day, I was feeling pretty flush after generous gifts from family, soooo I thought after that it’d be as good a time as any to purchase some very expensive makeup I’d been wanting to try for ages! I bought these about 2 months ago so I’ve used them numerous times up to now.

nars steven klein blush face palette hourglass ambient lighting powder diffused light niod photography fluid (3)

Nars One Shocking Moment Cheek Studio Palette

It’s not hard to understand why this palette was so tempting. It LOOKS gorgeous and I really wanted it. I hadn’t tried any Nars powder products so it was actually a good value way to try lots of different products. I have no regrets buying it as I love using all the pans in there; my most used is probably the palest pink blush as it’s just so pretty! The contour and bronzer are good shades for me and the matte highlight makes for a good setting powder. In theory, they’re probably not anything life changing, but it’s an amazing collection to have all in one gorgeous palette.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Diffused Light

This was very much a blogger induced purchase. The Hourglass powders are much hyped and raved about for giving a beautiful luminosity and pore-refined, airbrushed finish, along with beautiful packaging; I just couldn’t wait to try one. I went for Diffused Light as I thought the yellowy tone may help with redness and flatter my skintone. It is a really nice product, not super pigmented (I do a lil swatch here), with a silky, finely milled formula and definitely delivers in terms of glow! I use it mostly all over as a setting powder however sometimes I feel that gives just too much glow so I only use it in certain areas. My pores were unaffected; they weren’t blurred but neither were they emphasised. I don’t regret buying it, however now I’ve tried it, I don’t think for £38 it’s one I’ll replace when it’s finished. It will however last me absolutely ages! 🙂

NIOD Photography Fluid

This purchase came about after seeing Laura from buynow/bloglater post about it on Instagram I think it was, describing it as an “Instagram filter for your face”… She’s since written a full post on it here which, since having the product myself, I completely concur with! I was happy with the price:hype ratio; £20 was easily parted with for what sounded to me like a great product. Base products (along with lipsticks) are my weakness. It’s a sheeny yellowy liquid (kind of like a liquid Hourglass Diffused Light!) that comes in a bottle with a pipette. The packaging is not fantastic, I just wipe it on my face from the stick rather than squeezing it. I use it all over my face as a primer before foundation, and it really does have a pretty effect! It’s a luminous glow that evens out dullness and redness in my face, and helps slightly to hide my humongous cheek pores! If you want a glowy primer to even out your skintone then this is definitely worth a shot.

Love, Nicole

xxxx

Follow Me on Bloglovin!

Save

My Glowy Makeup Arsenal

glowy makeup nio anastasia beverley hills the balm mary loumanizer bareminerals hourglass ambient lighting powder pixi flawless beauty primer 2glowy makeup nio anastasia beverley hills the balm mary loumanizer bareminerals hourglass ambient lighting powder pixi flawless beauty primeranastasia beverley hills so hollywood illuminator thebalm mary loumanizer hourglass ambient lighting diffused light

Pixi Flawless Beauty Primer

This is a nice primer for glow and hydration. It’s a thick, creamy formula and is not OTT in terms of glow. It doesn’t really help pores and I’m not sure if it prolongs makeup but it’s a nice base to give your face some life if you have dull skin.

NIOD Photography Fluid

I’ll talk more about this in an upcoming post (which you’ll now find here), but this is really great! A yellowy liquid that’s a lot more watery than the Pixi Primer but I use it in the same way as a base for foundation. It evens out dullness and redness and slightly helps to blur my pores. I’d consider this a glowy, perfecting liquid more than anything else. It has been dubbed an “Instagram filter for your face”.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in ‘Diffused Light’

A pretty, light and finely milled powder I use for setting, sometimes all over my face if I’m feeling like a very dewy face, or just in targeted areas if I’m not. Expensive yes, not sure if it’s entirely worth it but if you like trying cult beauty products or love sheeny base products then its not a complete waste of money. I talked about it a bit more in this post too.

bareMinerals Mineral Veil in Illuminating Finish

Another illuminating setting powder but this time a loose one. I generally prefer loose powders over pressed as I find they offer more coverage and are more effective at making makeup last longer; plus I find them less likely to cake! This is a great powder from a brand that I really like and want to try more from. The packaging is great, with a sifter that stops it leaking every where. A reasonable price point for a good product (you can often find it on offer or discount codes).

theBalm Mary Lou Manizer Luminizer

A very popular highlighter, I was drawn into buying this from reading other blogs. It’s a pretty, gold, sparkly highlight that I use on my brow and cheek bones and down my nose. It’s quite an obvious highlight but I like that. There is a fair bit of fall out when you pick some up on a brush as it’s quite a powdery formula but I don’t really have an issue with this.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Illuminator in ‘So Hollywood’

Instagram made me want this. I can’t believe I spent £28 on it as I think that’s far too expensive, but that being said there are even more expensive highlighters out there! However, it is a very nice product once I’d gotten over the price and realised I might as well enjoy it now I’d bought it lol. It’s more sheen and less sparkle than the Mary Lou-manizer, which I think I actually prefer. It has more of a wet look effect on your cheek which is beautiful. It’s a truer gold than Mary Lou but that doesn’t translate to it being more intense; if applied in the same way it is probably the more subtle of the two. I kind of wish I’d purchased the colour Starlight instead as I would love to try a white-gold highlight! Unfortunately So Hollywood and Starlight seem to be hard to get hold of at the moment.

Any recommendations on other good highlighters? As I said, I’d love to try a more white/silver one!

Love, Nicole

xxxx

Follow Me on Bloglovin!

Save

Save

High Street/Drugstore Beauty Haul

good things manuka honey super facialist vitamin c

I placed a Boots order as I wanted to get a cleanser in stock that I could use when my current one runs out. They’re currently running their 3 for 2 on skincare offer, so I obviously had to take advantage. I didn’t have a serum in my routine so that was an obvious product to search for and I thought getting a moisturiser in stock would also be a good idea. I chose the Good Things Manuka Honey Creamy Cleanser and Good Things Manuka Honey Daily Moisturiser. I like the sound of this brand, whose products are free from nasties like parabens, mineral oils and sodium laureth sulphate. I’ve tried them both once to get a quick first impression and they seem so nice! Both so creamy and hydrating. Hopefully they’ll turn out to be purse-friendly skincare staples! Time will tell.

For a serum I chose Super Facialist Vitamin C+ Glow Boost Skin Serum. I really love the Super Facialist products I’ve tried before, so this was an obvious choice for an affordable serum. I’ve read Vitamin C can be good for fading marks, of which I have many, so fingers crossed! I’ve been using it day and night after toner but before moisturiser for about a week so far and I love it. As with the cleansing oil from the same range, it smells beautifully of orange which makes it such a pleasure to apply.

superdrug nip and fab glycolic fix dragons blood hot cloth cleanser sanitary pads micellar water

I placed an order with Superdrug primarily because they had a phenomenal offer on Nip + Fab products. As will be clear if you’ve read any of my previous skincare or empties posts, I am a huge fan of the Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Pads, so I picked up a tub of them as I had run out. I also thought while Nip + Fab was on offer, I’d try their Dragons Blood Fix Cleansing Pads as they have some great ingredients like hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid, and I love to try something new 🙂

I was also running low on micellar water so I made the most of another offer and picked up two bottles of Superdrug Simply Pure Micellar Water. Despite having just ordered a cleanser from Boots, I couldn’t resist buying two more that were on a buy one get one free. This particular cleanser I’d read good reviews about and was being compared to Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish. It is the Superdrug Naturally Radiant Hot Cloth Cleanser and it comes with a free cloth which is a nice addition! The packaging seems nice and I’m excited to try it out soon. I don’t think cleansers are something you need to pay a fortune for, there are plenty of good offerings for under £10 and I hope this will be one of them.

The final, more random purchase were some sanitary pads. I’d been thinking about how pads must disrupt the ahem, ‘environment’ down there and contain chemicals and materials that don’t necessarily do that area any good. I saw some from this brand called Gift that say their pads are “Anti-allergy, luxuriously soft sanitary pads with wings. 5x more absorbent than ordinary brands. Natural ingredients include antibacterial Anion layer made from Tourmaline minerals, fights odours, regulates flow & balances hormones”. They also donate 10% of the profits to charity, so while they could be considered slightly more expensive, they’re pretty much in the same price bracket as my usual favoured brand ‘Always’. Maybe trying these can even make my next ‘time of the month’ a bit exciting! Hmmmm probably not Nicole…

Best wishes,

Nicole

xxxx

Follow me on Bloglovin!

Save