I know this is the most cliche thing to say, but I honestly can’t wrap my head around the fact that March is now over. It feels like just yesterday that I was setting up my Christmas tree and drinking homemade Amaretto eggnog!
March has been such a wonderful month for me, with so much personal growth and so many new and exciting things to look forward to in the upcoming months. A family friend has opened up a new store in a local shopping centre, and is stocking not only her own healthy premixes and clothing designs, but clothing, art, jewellery and other products by local people too. I’ve rented some shelf space to try out a range of homemade scrubs and body lotions, and I’m looking forward to the feedback on them.
Anyway, let’s have a look at the things I’ve been loving this month!
First off, I’ve loved the March giveaways that Pink Peonies has been having. She’s on her final one now, for a Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette, and I’m frantically entering every day, hoping to be the lucky girl who wins it. If you’ve never heard of the blog, go and have a squizz – she has the most beautiful photos on each of her posts, and she does such fantastic reviews, plus her YouTube channel is amazing!
I’ve been loving a few products this month, and first off, I have to mention the Clarins Hydraquench Cream for normal to dry skin. I have always had fairly normal skin, up until the past 3 years or so, when suddenly my skin would start reacting to certain products badly (once so badly that I had to get strong cortisone cream and tablets from the doctor). I thought I just had very sensitive skin, and possibly some allergies to something in the products that irritated it.
After reading blogs such as All Dolled Up and Not Another Poppie, I realised that I simply had dehydrated areas on my face, and that the skin was so irritated and inflamed because of this, that it was red and tender. Once I knew why my skin was acting out, and I treated it accordingly, in ways suggested by these blogs, my skin changed completely. I haven’t had a problem since, and I’ve had so many compliments on how good my skin is looking.
The Clarins Hydraquench Cream has been my biggest saviour – it’s designed to HYDRATE your skin, instead of just MOISTURISING it. I purchased a few sample sachets of it from the Rubybox RubyRands Swop Shop, and gave it a try, and after a couple of days I rushed out to buy a jar of it. It’s THAT good! My skin felt like it was breathing a massive sigh of relief the first time I applied the cream, and the fact that it smells gosh-darn delicious is just the cherry on top.
Unfortunately, it’s not cheap. Red Square online, and in my local branch, only stock the 50ml jars, and they’re R535 each. I did, however, find out that Dischem stocks 30ml jars for under R300, and grabbed one from there.
Another thing my skin has just been loving is the Freeman Honeydew and Chamomile Sleeping Mask. It smells like green melons, and is a thick, creamy mask that you spread on and leave on overnight. It sinks into your skin like your regular night cream would, so it doesn’t make a mess all over your pillow (my first concern), and you can get about 3/4 uses out of one sachet, that costs a mere R16.95 at Dischem! I’m hoping to see this in the tube form soon, as this is going to be a must-have this winter.
This has been my final skin saviour – thermal water spray. The Vichy Eau Thermale is lovely – packed with minerals, it’s so soothing on irritated skin, and it’s a fantastic replacement for a toner. I spray this fine mist on my face, before applying my serum, as the serum contains hyaluronic acid, and this locks in the moisture from the spray. It’s fantastic for setting makeup too, as well as using it to cool down your skin in the heat (I took it with me to Mozambique this month, and it helped to calm my skin when it was red and stressed from the crazy heat and humidity).
You can buy this at Dischem, Red Square and Clicks, for R150-200.
As far as self tanner goes, I’ve never been much of a fan. I hate that classic Oros-man look that so many girls walk around with, and I really do not want to turn myself bright orange. I’ve tried many self tans, only to be disappointed, and throw the bottle out. Fake Bake changed my opinion entirely.
I bought a can of the Airbrush tan when Dura Lavora, the South African stockist for Fake Bake was having a buy-one-get-one-free special on it sometime last year, and I fell in love with the brand. Not only is it pretty much foolproof to apply, with it’s colour guide in the spray to show you where you’ve applied tanner, but it doesn’t have that god-awful self tanner smell that we all love so much. And the tan LASTS!
Unfortunately, they no longer seem to be stocking Airbrush, or maybe it’s been discontinued, so I had to give one of the other tanners a bash, and after asking some advice on the Dura Lavora Facebook page, I settled on Flawless.
It’s even better than the Airbrush. The bottle of spray lasts ages, and you apply it with the help of a professional tanning mitt that you get with the bottle. It smells sweet and fruity, and gives such easy, streak-free application, which lasts for about a week before it starts to come off. It’s a natural brown tan, rather than the horrid orange.
I’ll definitely be repurchasing this when my bottle is empty, which unfortunately will be soon.
You can buy it online at Dura Lavora, where it retails for R389.
I have one final favourite –
The Revlon Age Defying Targeted Dark Spot Concealer, which I bought on special at Red Square for R119, although it’s usually R159.
I only recently started using concealers, and this was the second one that I bought. I keep this for the days when I have really dark circles under my eyes from a late (or heavy) night, as the consistency is thick and it gives really great coverage. I use whatever is left on the applicator to highlight my forehead, my chin and my cupid’s bow, and I have to say that it really is marvellous! I can use this with a BB cream on days when I really don’t feel like wearing full makeup, and it just makes my skin look flawless.
One thing though – it sets quite quickly. Don’t apply it under your eyes, and then to all the other areas, and only then start blending as by then it’s started to dry. I usually do under my eyes first, and then go in with my blending sponge and when that’s done, I do the other areas, as it’s not easy to blend in once it’s started setting. Looking at this positively, at least you know that once it’s on, IT’S ON, and there’s no budging at all!
FINALLY, I have one non-favourite. L’Oreal Nude Magique Blur Cream.
I don’t get this stuff. I bought it in the hopes that it would be a fantastic imperfection-blurring primer. I’ve had it for a couple of months, and I’ve really given it the benefit of the doubt more times than I can count now, but I really just can’t bring myself to use any more of it. I’ve used it with 3 different foundations, and when my skin has been good AND bad, just to test it out and see if something would switch up the way it sits on my skin. Nothing seems to help?! Pink Peonies has said more than once that she loves this stuff, so why oh why can I not get it to work for me?? Each and every time I’ve tried it, it feels nice on my skin, until I put my foundation on top, and then it looks like I don’t even know what exfoliation is. My skin looks dry and flakey, yet when I wipe it off and start my makeup again without it, my skin looks perfect again. This product just doesn’t work for me, and so I won’t even be finishing the tube, never mind repurchasing, but if so many other people out there love it, then perhaps it’s just my annoying skin?
I know this post was insanely long, so I hope at least a few people manage to get to the end, I really need to work at making these posts a little shorter and more condensed.
Have a happy Tuesday, and good luck with April Fool’s tomorrow! Is anyone pulling any April Fool’s pranks?