This weekend has been alcohol-fuelled with late nights, and freezing cold weather! Our poor skin – what it must endure! Anyhow this got me thinking about those ‘I-couldn’t-live-without-you’ miracle/saviour products that are the basis of your beauty drawer (or a whole cupboard in my case) and I thought I would share them with you.
Sudocrem – My number one product!
Buy the big pot, because this should be the staple product of your bathroom cabinet! My unwavering love for Neutrogena is shared with my love for the people behind Sudocreme!
Originally for nappy rash (!) this antiseptic healing cream with extracts of lavender is you skin’s saviour. It soothes, fights and banishes blemishes overnight. I even put a layer over spot-prone areas, mainly because I love the soothing smell but also because it really, really does work. It is also equally effective on dry patches of skin and shaving rash (we all know that when it comes to shaving those intimate areas we need to take as much care as possible!). It is also shocking just how long this baby lasts. A complete steal at £5.49 for its biggest pot (400g), it will last you way into next year. Equally handy is the handbag friendly size (£1.99 for 30ml).
Bio Oil (£8.99 for 60ml)
I had heard so many women rave about this product, mainly for its ability to fade stretch marks. Since, at the tender age of 24, I haven’t (sadly) had a period of great weight loss or had a baby (!), I didn’t see that there was much that this product could do for me. However when a friend recommend it for scaring and general uneven skin tone for the face, like all good beauty bloggers I was willing to give it a try. I always (and quite wrongly) believed my skin was too much on the oily side to use this. How wrong I was! A tiny drop, applied and massaged onto cleansed skin transformed my complexion. After applying nightly for two weeks, not only did the general tone of my skin improve but the little marks (where I naughtily ignored all advice and squeezed) had visibly started to fade. Equally transforming was the effect it had on my body. Unlike my face the skin on my body can verge on the dry side, but once I applied this to the dry patches my skin became hydrated. I am onto my second bottle… enough said!
Clarins Moisture Rich Body Lotion (£30 for 200ml)
This is a luxury. I rarely can justify spending £30 on a body moisturiser mainly because it runs out so quickly. However when I returned from two weeks in Italy I was determined to maintain my tan and moisturise twice a day! With time to kill in Milan, I browsed duty-free and remembered another friend’s recommendation. She claimed that Clarins Moisture Rich Body Lotion would guarantee a lasting tan. One whiff, and I was sold (I pretended to not understand the euro/pound conversion). It smelt like its name: rich and comforting. I knew it was worth investing and I was right. 6 months on, if I look really closely, I can just about see my tan lines! All jokes aside, my tan really did last. However more impressive still was the effect it had on my general skin tone. Parched and thirsty from my devotion to sun bathing, it was suddenly hydrated and happy! With central heating, hot showers and freezing weather this product is worth investing in all year round. Even if it is a little extravagant!
Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief (£32 for 50ml)
Sufferers of dehydrated skin (basically anyone who gets drunk 2-3 times a week) need to make sure they have this product on stand by. Apply before your moisturiser and it literally becomes a ‘drink’ for the skin, offering 24 hours worth of hydration. Combined with your daily 2l of water, your skin will be as right as rain in no time. Even better, the demand and love for this product has resulted in Clinique creating an overnight mask version (£28 for 100ml) for optimum hydration. Add it to your make-up off, clothes half-off, fall-into-bed, drunk, routine and no one will be able to tell you were out the night before! Out of all the products I tried during my time at Clinique, this was my favourite.
Mixa Intense Crème Mains Réparatrice
Another French friend (I’m sure you can see a trend appearing here) that I discovered when I lived in Paris. It’s their version of Dove but MUCH better. Due to the Russian winds, it was bitterly cold during the winter months and the skin on my hands started to crack as they tend to do. I was in search of some major relief; nay I was in dire need of some major relief. I remembered hearing good things about the brand Mixa, so I popped into Monoprix and bought the intense version. It is without a doubt the best hand cream I have ever used. Unlike most hand creams, my hands actually stayed soft all day with just one use. The moment I brought it home, mother, sisters and friends were using it whilst ordering me to bring it over by the dozens! For €3.66 for 100 ml each I actually agreed, the UK needs this product! The range also offers body washes, lotions, milks and scrubs. So next time you’re over, forget the cheese and stock up on the Mixa!
Sisley Confort Extrème Levres Lip Balm (£32.50)
I have the advantage of being good friends with Urban Retreat’s beauty adviser, Sara J Parker. She is a wealth of knowledge so every time we meet I pick her brains for all the latest beauty goss and products she is loving! I was having a bit of a moan, crying that no matter what lip balm I use the dry, winter winds always get the better of me – we obviously also talk about more important subject such as politics, Shakespeare and poetry (lie). Sara recommended Sisley Confort Extrème Levres Lip Balm, a hero product and must have with the celebs. It’s described as a ‘true emergency treatment for dry cracked lips’, well this an emergency Doctor! It may be £32.50 (don’t faint) but an mix of hazelnut oil and shea butter means your lips will be kissable within minutes (now that’s worth paying for!). Purchase at http://www.urbanretreat.co.uk/beautique/product/Sisley/Confort_Extreme_Nutritive_Lip_Balm.aspx