Un-chapped smiles…

Un-chapped smiles…

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Love bright, vibrant lip colours? Using makeup-remover wipes doesn’t always clean off all the pigment thats left by lipsticks. And if you’re using bright colours like I do…we know how annoying of a problem it can be. Exfoliating lips regularly (not more than once a week) removes the dead skin cells as well as stimulates new cell growth. This vital process conditions you lips, keeps them healthy and retains moisture. Particulary in the cold, dryness and dehydration is common, leading to chappiness.

So, HOW should we exfoliate? You can either use shop-bought products, or you can make them at home- just with 1 teaspoon honey, and 2 teaspoons Demerara sugar. The honey is super conditioning and the sugar granules buff off flaky skin. You can substitute honey by using equal parts of olive oil and Demerara sugar. If you don’t have any of these ingredients, you can always resort to your handy toothbrush and some vaseline or a lip moisturiser/lipbalm. Preferably use an old toothbrush, you’re not currently using, as we wouldn’t want any dead skin cells ending up between our teeth, would we?! Toothbrush on its own may be too harsh, therefore use a tiny amount of vaseline with it.

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As usual, start off by removing your lipstick and make up. I just use ordinary make up wipes…

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Dab some lukewarm water onto your lips to soften them.

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Now, using a lip scrub/exfoliator of your choice (I like Mint Julips from Lush), take a small amount onto your finger…

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Mint Julips tastes like choc chip ice cream, the peppermint & vanilla together with sugar crystals provide the best exfoliator (in my opinion). The peppermint aids in the healing process- no more chapped lips!
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…And gently rub the scrub onto your lips as you would normally do with a face exfoliator.  You will notice the granules change colour as they pick up the lipstick pigment residue that was not removed by the make up wipe. Be careful not to use excessive force (don’t scrub too hard) as this can be damaging to your lips. Over exfoliation could also worsen the dryness!
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Rinse the scrub off your lips, and dab the excess water away with a towel. Don’t rub, DAB!

The final step is to condition and moisturise your exfoliated lips using a natural beeswax lip balm which also contains peppermint, further aids in the healing process of chapped lips.
Photo 01-02-2015 16 22 33I, personally try and exfoliate once a week. If you exfoliate too often it can be damaging for your lips.

Removing excess dead skin also helps lip cosmetics to stay on for much longer, and they apply with better ease.

Say goodbye to chapped lips this winter…

 

Akruti x

 

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Last Minute Christmas Gift Ideas🎁!

Last Minute Christmas Gift Ideas🎁!

As we all get in the festive mood closer to Christmas Day, putting up the trees and decorations, we often struggle to find stocking fillers or gifts to put under the tree. So here is a little bit of inspiration to put a smile on those you love 😃

 

Bobble Drinks BottleFiltered water bottle. 

Also available in the UK at House of Fraser

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This crinkle free unisex sports bottle filters water at the mouthpiece as you drink. The filter at the mouthpiece can be replaced after 2-3 months of usage, and is the equivalent of 300 plastic bottles. Not only does it save money, but it also helps protect the environment as it is reusable and recyclable😃. The carbon filter removes chlorine and other contaminants from tap water. There are two available sizes: 550ml (£10 at Debenhams) and 1 litre (£13 at Debenhams). The filters come in various colours, so adds a bit of brightness to the season.

 

Essential Burt’s Bees – loving essentials for any season.

Available at Burt’s Bees for £12.99. Also Available at John Lewis and Waitrose.

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This set includes mini trial sizes of the Beeswax Lipbalm, Naturally Nourishing Milk & Honey Body Lotion, Coconut Foot Cream, Mini Hand Salve, and Soap Bark & Chamomile Deep Cleansing Cream. As mentioned in my previous post ‘My top 5 winter Essentials‘, I love Burt’s Bees products as they are natural and extremely moisturising especially in the wintery months. These mini sizes are great if your loved one is new to these products as it gives them a sample of a variety of items.

Their packaging is ideal as a Christmas Gift or even a stocking filler.

 

John Lewis Aroma Click & Heat Gel Hand Warmers

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Adorable knitted, animal print hand warmers, with gel warmer pads inside each warmer. Ideal for the winter, to keep in pockets, or to simply hold in your hands. The heat is activated by clicking the metal disc inside each of the gel pads. The activated pads last for 45 minutes, and can be reactivated by placing in boiling hot water for 15 minutes.

They come in many different animal prints: Polar bear, Deer, Owl and Fox (just to mention a few!) and are reusable making it a warm Christmas.

Also available at John Lewis for £14!

 

Yankee CandleScented Candles

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These household candles are perfect for the holiday season. Yankee Candles have over 70 scents and sizes. They are perfect gifts for the home. My favourite all time scents are the Christmas Cookie, Black Cherry, French Vanilla and Cupcake Jar. Prices range from  £1.80 – £19.99. They are surprisingly long lasting, and dispenses a subtle scent that usually covers the whole room. Check out their website for more options on their scents.

 

Molton BrownBath & Body Gifts

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You might think that it may be too much to pay for a shower gel or shampoo, but why not treat your loved ones with something special for the season. Whether buying individual bottles, or gift sets, there are a variety of options. Prices commonly start from £13- £80 for mens gifts. Women gift sets start at £20 up to £74 for gift sets. My personal favourite is the Pink Pepperpod Body Wash, retailing at £18. If your looking for that perfect pamper gift, this is definitely the one to get to treat your loved one, or even spoil yourself over the holidays.

 

Hair Straightener

GHD IV Stylerr
GHD IV Styler

 

GHD IV Salon Styler
GHD IV Salon Styler

 

 

 

My never ending love for GHD straighteners (Good Hair Day). Yes, we do need an amazing pair of hair tools as these can be used to straighten and curl hair. The joys of winter are the frizzy hair that we get when it rains, or is damp outside.  Having owned two different types of GHD’s: ghd IV salon styler with larger plates, and the styler for straightening, curls and waves.  I definately think this product is a must have for every girl. They tame frizzy hair down. GHD straighteners are great as they have ceramic plates, swivel cords and long lasting curls. I have owned my GHD Salon Styler for over 3 years and they are still in perfect working condition. The Salon Styler however, does not give long lasting and tight curls, compared to the IV Styler (left picture).  Salon Styler is perfect for straightening thick long hair, as it gets the job done fast!

🎅Happy Shopping🎁

🎄Merry Christmas🎄

x

❄My Top 5 Winter Essentials❄

❄My Top 5 Winter Essentials❄

We’re almost half way into November, and its finally getting cold (yes after the exceptionally warm October we had in England!). This isn’t the best season for our skin, as well as hair. With the festive season it is not always easy to stay on top of a well balanced diet. Therefore it is important to keep our bodies hydrated and nourished with the vital nutrients and vitamins. Our skin, nails and hair also tend to dry out and get damaged.

These are my top 5 essentials to survive through the cold winter months. I am not a health expert, but these essentials may prove useful to you as they have to me.

 

1) Coconut oil hair mask: It is a white solid in the jar, but melts quickly in the palm of our hands. This oil can be used as an alternative to olive oil, or vegetable oil, as well as a great skin moisturiser. I have recently purchased the cold pressed Chi  100% Raw Organic Coconut Oil, retailing at £9.44. Personally I am not too fond of the smell on my skin, so I prefer to use it as a conditioning hair mask, to prevent my hair drying out in the winter. I try to use this hair oil mask once a week on dry hair, applying it the night before I wash my hair. Take some in your fingers and gently massage it through the whole scalp, making sure the whole head is covered with some oil. Whatever you have remaining in your hands, run it through the length of your hair, comb it through using a wide toothed comb and tie a loose braid. Keeping it on overnight helps to condition and soften your hair. Use a shower cap or a towel on the pillow if you are worried about greasing up your pillowcase, and pillow! don’t drench the hair with the oil, excess oil will just run down your face as it melts! Make sure you wash it out thoroughly with shampoo, it takes a few goes to remove all the oil. It cannot, however, be used as an alternative to a conditioner because it doesn’t rinse out well with water alone. If you do have extremely frizzy or heat damaged hair, take a small pinch (smaller than the size of a pea), rub between your palms, and pull it through the length of your dry hair (remember to use a small amount or you will end up with a greasy mess).

Chi coconut oil

 

2) Aloe Vera Gel: Click here for my post on Benefits of Aloe Vera. You can also use this as a full body moisturiser.

Aloe Vera Gel from Boots

 

3) Lip Balm: My favourite is the one with Burts Bees Beeswax Vitamin E & Peppermint for £3.69. Having used Vaseline and other lip moisturisers in the past, discovering Burts Bees was the best thing the could happen. It stays on for long, you do not need to keep reapplying it the way you would with Vaseline, it is super moisturising, the Vitamin E soothes dry chapped lips, and the Peppermint oil refreshes the lips. The fact that the product is made from a natural ingredient, bees wax made it even more attractive. The tube is more hygienic than using a lip balm from a tub, and it also fits easily into your small clutch bags or pocket. Its good value for money as you don’t need to keep re-applying it and it softens and conditions the lips, especially in the winter. I also apply it before I do my make up, and keeps my lipstick from cracking.

Burts Bees

 

4) Green Juice: Check out my Greeeench Juice recipe. I like to have this every morning for breakfast, as I get my 5 a day as well as a good intake of water to kick start my day.

Green Juice

 

5)Lip Scrub: Mint Julips by Lush Handmade Cosmetics for £5.50. I try to use this once every fortnight (frequent use can have negative effects). This lip scrub tastes like mint chocolate chips, and also acts as a moisturiser. It eliminates all those cracks, rough bits and bleeding of the lips. You only need a minimal amount of the scrub, rub it gently on your chapped and cracked lips, and you can lick it off after using it. The small pot lasts a long time, I have had mine for 2 months, and its not even near the half way mark.

It contains:

Caster Sugar (coarse): helps to exfoliate and hydrate the skin

Peppermint Oil: Cools the skin by stimulating nerves and dilating blood vessels

Organic Jojoba Oil (from the jojoba seeds): Readily absorbed by our skin epidermis is the nourishing and softening

Vanilla extract: For flavour

Tagetes Oil (from the marigold flower): Contains antimicrobial and anti fungal properties keeping the skin clear.

Mint Julips Lush

 


 ❄Comment with your views or any suggestions of your Top 5 Winter Essentials❄

Share the goodness with friends and family 😊

😘

Benefits of Aloe Vera

Benefits of Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera PlantAloe vera gel is found in the inner part of the aloe leaf. whereas the yellow aloe vera latex is found right under the skin. Aloe vera gel is more commonly used compared to the latex. The latex has been known for asthma, colds, bleeding, diabetes, varicose veins as well as vision related problems.

Having personally used aloe vera gel topically for two years continuously, I can definitely see the benefits of this wonderful natural product. Because I have extremely sensitive skin, I use aloe gel as a facial moisturiser. Applying it right after I wash my face, avoiding the eyes, it initially feels like a face mask when its setting into the skin, however, after a few minutes, that stretchy feeling disappears, leaving me with soft glowy skin. This product has really helped enrich and moisturise my skin and prevent any breakouts, pimples and acne. I use the Life Plan Organic Aloe Vera Gel from Boots for £7.49, which you can purchase in bulk when they have the ‘3 for 2’ offer (which is on almost all the time! 😃).

Aloe Vera Gel from Boots

This product can be purchased at:

http://www.boots.com/en/Life-Plan-Aloe-Vera-Gel-200ml_1133817/

If using fresh aloe vera gel from the plant, I would suggest applying it on once you have washed your face (straight out the shower), leave it on for 20 minutes and then wash off. This is because the gel direct from the plant can be quite heavy as it is not formulated or adapted for a specific use. However, it does leave the skin feeling extremely moisturised.

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Cut the leaf near the stem, with a sharp knife. It gets quite messy as the latex and gel oozes out.

Cooling of the skin is essential to all humans, especially when exposed to excessive sunlight. Aftersun skin care is important to prevent further skin damage, hence if you are looking for a natural product which has minimal chemicals, try out aloe gel, and even better if you can use one straight off the plant. Aloe vera is excellent for burns, and being a natural product, doesn’t cause further damage to the skin.

It can be used to prevent and treat stretch marks. Prevention is always easier and better than treating. When treating stretch marks, mix aloe gel with Vitamin E and Vitamin A, for best results on older stretch marks. Promoting skins natural regeneration, as well as protecting the skin from free radical damage.

As it helps reduce stretch marks, it also helps with redness and darker spots on the skin.

Helps reduce and get rid off eczema and psoriasis by reducing the inflammation, irritation and redness of the skin.

Aloe vera can also be ingested (a small piece, or juice), which cools the body internally and nourishes the digestive system. The aloe latex cells contain properties which are use as a natural laxative.

It is the only known natural, vegetarian source of Vitamin B12.

 

Side Effects

Aloe gel is more likely to be safer to use than aloe latex, especially when used or consumed at high or unknown doses for long periods of time.

Seek medical device if you do experience any other side effects upon use of aloe vera gel or latex.

 

 

Disclaimer: 

These are my experiences and opinions on the use of aloe vera gel and latex.

It is best to contact your General Practitioner before consumption or the topical use of products, especially if your currently taking other medication.

 

Love,

Akruti x