31 May 2015

Favourites // May 2015

Avene Cicalfate Repair Cream | £7.50 // Meg raved about this a couple of months ago and since I usually love what she recommends, I thought I'd give it a try. Think of this as a better version of sudocrem. It's a multi-use product that can be used for pretty much anything and everything. I mainly use it on pesky spots when I want to get rid of them but don't want to use anything too harsh and irritate my sensitive skin any further. It also works really well on eczema flare ups.

COLAB London Dry Shampoo | £3.50 // I don't use a dry shampoo on a regular basis but for some reason my hair has been getting oily quicker than usual and this has been a life saver towards the end of the week. I love the dry shampoos from COLAB as they come in two sizes and are a great price. They refresh my hair without feeling like I have any product in my hair and without leaving a white cast in my hair. The scent of London is bergamot, musk and magnolia.

JorgObĂ© Peel Off Mask | £22 // This month I've remembered how much I liked the JorgObĂ© Peel Off Mask when I first tried it last year. After trialing it and writing about it, I put it to the back of my skin care cupboard after trying some other products and it stayed there forgotten. I've been using it once a week this past month on my t-zone to remove blackheads and to keep my skin looking clearer. You apply a layer and wait thirty minutes or so until it dries and you're able to peel it off completely.

Barry M Gelly Nail Paint in Cardamon & Chai | £3.99 // I bought these two nail polishes the other month and I really love them. Although not particularly summery colours, they've been what I felt like wearing.

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28 May 2015

NOTD // Butter London Sprog

Supplies used... 
Orly Bonder Base Coat
Butter London Sprog // two coats

25 May 2015

NOTD // Butter London Bossy Boots

Supplies used... 
Orly Bonder Base Coat
CND Speedey Top Coat

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24 May 2015

My Little Provence Box | May 2015

My Little Provence Doll Magnets // DIY The Sunny Cuff // L'Occitane Mer & Mistral Shower Gel // L'Occitane Verbena Body Lotion // L'Occitane Verbena Leaf Soap //  L'Occitane Roses et Reines Hand & Nail Cream // My Little Beauty Eye Crayon. 

My Little Box monthly subscription - £11 + £3.95 P&P

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22 May 2015

Empties // May 2015

may-2015-empties-products-i-have-used-up-finished-rottenotter-rotten-otter-blog My Little Beauty Micellar Water // I really liked this micellar water and although it isn't as good as Bioderma or the Garnier version, it still removed my eye makeup really well. If this was available to buy I don't think I'd get it again as the Garnier version is cheaper and works better.

First Aid Beauty Instant Repair Oatmeal Mask | £17.50 // This is one of my favourite face masks and I've already bought another tube. It's perfect for my sensitive and eczema prone skin as the oats helps to soothe and moisturise as well as a gentle exfoliation.

Roques Oneil Therapie Himalayan Detox Salts | £37 // These bath salts are one of my favourite bath products and I'm pleased with how long I was able to make them last. You only need a small scoop for each bath and although they are expensive, as a once a week treat then I think the price is ok. They smell amazing and really do help you to fall asleep which I always have problems with. I'm keeping the jar so I only have to buy the refill packs which work out cheaper as the get more for the same price.

Pai Comfrey & Calendula Calming Body Cream | £22 // I think I might have got a faulty tube as right from the very first use I wasn't able to get much product out of each pump. I really liked this moisturiser but am trying to work my way through others that I have before buying anything new and I'm currently using one from A-derma.

Thierry Mugler Alien Perfume | £49.50 for 30ml, £66.50 for 60ml or £77.50 for 90ml // Although I prefer the extraordinaire version of this perfume, I still enjoyed wearing Alien. Now I've tried it, I probably wouldn't buy it again, but I do still have a mini bottle to use.

L'Oreal False Lash Telescopic Mascara | £10.99 // Despite using up the whole tube, I still can't make up my mind on this mascara. I loved the original Telescopic and had high hopes for this. There were days that I loved how it worked and how my lashes looked but others it just clumped together and didn't sit right. I don't think I'd buy this again now that I've tried it as there are other mascaras that work well every time I use them.

E.L.F Eyebrow Treat & Tame in Light // While sorting through my make-up I noticed that this eyebrow gel from E.L.F had dried up and was pretty much unusable. This was a good colour match for my fair eyebrows although I never used the tame side. You can't buy E.L.F anymore so for now I'll stick with the Benefit version I'm using at the moment.

Phyto Phytoapaisant Shampoo | £12.50 // This was a bit of a disappointing shampoo as I found it incredibly hard to wash out and a couple of times it felt like I still had shampoo in my hair once it was dry which makes it looks greasy and also irritates my scalp. This is designed for sensitive and irritated scalps and I didn't feel like it did anything to soothe my scalp like others have. There are other Phyto shampoos that I like so I wouldn't buy this one again.

Phyto Phytobaume Express Conditioner | £14.50 // I didn't think much of this conditioner and the only reason I finished it is because I hate throwing away products. It's described as an express conditioner that you rinse away straight away so I imagined it to be extremely moisturising, but my hair never felt any different after I used it. I also felt like it weighed my hair down a bit despite only using a small amount. I wouldn't buy it again and I'm currently using a Naked conditioner.

Ojon Restorative Hair Treatment Plus | £19 for 50ml or £34.50 for 100ml // It feels like all of this months empties have been a bit disappointing but I always try to finish a product if I can even if I didn't like it. This is another one that I really didn't like and it was quite a struggle to finish it. The main thing I didn't like was the scent and I know that's not really important especially in a hair product, but this was horrible. I also found this very hard to use. It's a solid oil that you have to warm up in your hands before you apply it to your hair. It took a very long time to warm up and even then it was very hard to evenly distribute it throughout my long hair. I also didn't think it did much to my hair and for the price, I was expecting great things. Needless to say, I won't be buying this again. 

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21 May 2015

NOTD // Nails Inc. Sweets Way

notd nails inc sweets way nail polish rottenotter rotten otter blog
Supplies used... 
Orly Bonder Base Coat

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20 May 2015

Currently Reading 002

currently-reading-002-rottenotter-rotten-otter-blog 3 currently-reading-002-rottenotter-rotten-otter-blog 2 currently-reading-002-rottenotter-rotten-otter-blog 1
It's nearly a year since I posted about the books that were on my reading list. I still haven't read three of the nine books I wrote about which is quite bad, I'll have to put them at the top of my reading list. I also have a whole shelf of books I need to read (last photo) as well as a lot on my Kindle. I think I'll have to put myself on a no buy until I've read them all! I'm currently reading The Girl On The Train by Paula Hawkins and The Wedding by Nicholas Sparks, both I've just started and have only read thirty or so pages.

I really enjoyed the Goodreads Reading Challenge last year so I signed up again this year with a target of reading 104 books in 2015. I'm currently 10 books ahead of schedule so I'm doing pretty good! I really like how I can keep track of what I'm reading but also all the recommendations I've gotten from the site. There's currently about 1500 books in my to-read bookshelf which is a bit ridiculous and I have no idea how I'll read that many. Whenever I see a book I think I'll like I just add it to my to-reads. I should really go through it as I'm sure there's books there from years ago that I still haven't read.

Any recommendations?

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19 May 2015

Mini Reviews 042 // The Body Shop | Liz Earle | African Botanics | Costes

mini reviews liz earle the body shop african botanics costes rottenotter rotten otter blog mini reviews african botanics rottenotter rotten otter blog
The Body Shop Hemp Hand Protector | £5 for 30ml or £11 for 100ml // This is one of my favourite hand creams and I think this is either my second or third tube. It is incredibly moisturising so you only need a tiny amount especially if you're using it during the day. I tend to save it for night just before I go to bed so I can apply a little bit more and it acts as a treatment while I sleep. The worst area for my eczema at the moment is my hands as I'm constantly washing and using hand gel in work and am then out in the cold waiting for the bus. This hand cream really helps to soothe my skin and keeps flare ups to a minimum. I also love using this as a food cream as I find it more moisturising than the Hemp Foot Protector. I've grown to really like the scent although I know some people will hate it, try smelling it in a shop if you can.

Liz Earle Foot Spritzer | £7.75 // This is an essential product for me during the summer or if I can on holiday especially if I'm walking around a lot and it's hot. A spray or two of this and your feet will instantly feel refreshed and cooled down. It has a lovely menthol peppermint scent with a hint of rosemary and it dries almost instantaneously. It comes in quite a small bottle so it'll easily fit in your bag or even in your carry on as it's under 100ml. If it's particularly hot and we have a heat wave then it feels amazing on your skin if you keep it in the fridge.

African Botanics Marula Intense Skin Repair Body Balm | £40 // I ordered this as it was a recommendation for soothing and healing eczema. It's expensive but when it comes to my eczema and how long I've had it, price doesn't really come into it for me. I'd prefer to pay more if it's going to stop flare ups. Saying that, I was a bit disappointed with this. It works amazingly well at moisturising the skin especially hands, elbows, knees and feet but I don't think it works any better than the balance Me Stellar Face Balm which is half the price. Apart from keeping my skin from being dry and flaky, I didn't really notice a difference when using it on my eczema. It didn't go away any quicker but keeping my skin moisturised does help but I can do this by using a cheaper product. I also find this quite hard to use as it's a solid balm that you have to scoop out with something otherwise it'll get all under your nails which I hate. You also have to warm it up in your hands first before you apply it so it turns into an oil otherwise you'll be waiting forever for it to sink in. Finally, the smell. I don't hate it but it's a very strong floral scent that I don't always feel like wearing. Save your money and try the balance Me version.

Costes Bath Flakes | £21 // Costes Bath Flakes infuses all the grandiose personality of the famous Hotel de Costes on rue St-Honore in Paris into your bath time, with bubbles that last the distance. If you are lucky enough to visit the delectable Hotel Costes in Paris, this is the bubble bath they provide in the bathrooms. Created by cult Parisienne perfumer Olivia Giacobetti, the scent is a spicy, woody mix of coriander seeds, white pepper, laurel, oriental woods, incense, musk and a touch of rose. These bath flakes are salt-based so they not only upgrade your bath-time to a luxuriously fragrant bubble heaven, they also soften the water making the experience gentler on your skin too.
This is another product I was pretty disappointed with. They come in a box of 10 sachets so you know exactly how much to use although I do think one sachet isn't enough for one bath but using two would be £4 per bath instead of £2. If you pour a sachet into running water it creates a few bubbles, nothing like what you'd get from using a Lush bubble bar, but enough to cover the water. The salts help to moisturise the skin and make the water feel nice. It's the scent that disappointed me. I was expecting something that smelt divine as the scent description on the Cult Beauty website sounds amazing. It smells really nice in the sachet but once you add it to water it just seems to disappear. I'm glad I've tried them but I won't be buying them and I recommend saving your money and trying something else.

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18 May 2015

NOTD // Nails Inc. Sugar House Lane

notd nails inc sugar house lane nail polish rottenotter rotten otter blog
Supplies used... 
Orly Bonder Base Coat

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15 May 2015

At Home Pedicure Essentials

at-home-pedicure-rottenotter-rotten-otter-blog 2 Step 1: Exfoliate your feet.
Either use a foot scrub or pumice stone, or both! I'm obsessed with this one from Deep Steep (£12.95). It smells incredible and almost good enough to eat, think peppermint bark. It's incredibly moisturising and the sugar cane creates a nicely abrasive scrub.

Step 2: Relax with a foot mask.
Grab a bowl of warm water, a towel, your foot mask of choice and put on a good film. I love the Jessica ZenSpa Pedicure Balanced Stimulating Mint Foot Masque (£14.55) which helps to break down dead skin cells and lock in moisture.They also sell a Cooling Ginger Foot Masque which I want to once this one is finished.

Step 3: Clip your nails.
You nails will have softened while you soaked the foot mask off so you'll easily be able to cut your nails down to your preferred length and/or shape.

Step 4: Moisturise.
Choose your favourite moisturiser and apply a generous layer. At this point you could persuade someone to give you a foot massage but if no one is around, you can always do it yourself. My favourite at the moment is The Body Shop Africa Honey & Beeswax Hands & Foot Butter (£10) which is incredibly moisturising and smells amazing.
at-home-pedicure-rottenotter-rotten-otter-blog 1 Step 5: Prep.
Since we've just applied a moisturiser, we now want to make sure there isn't any oil or residue on our nails as this will make the nail polish chip and flake away. Simply pour some nail polish remover onto a cotton pad and wipe over each nail. Then apply a layer of Orly Primetime (£8.95) to dehydrate the nail. This will insure the base coat adheres to the nail and will increase the longevity of your pedicure.

Step 6: Apply a base coat.
Apply a thin coat of your chosen base coat and leave plenty of drying time. I've gone for China Glaze Strong Adhesion Base Coat (£5.60).

Step 7: Choose a colour.
Since there are hints of the warmer summer months ahead of us, I've chosen a hot raspberry shade from Barry M, Pomegranate (£3.99). As with most nail polishes, I applied two thin coats of Pomegranate and made sure I left each layer to completely dry before I applied the next.

Step 8: Add a top coat.
Once your final layer of colour has dried then you can apply your topcoat. I'm using China Glaze Fast Forward Top Coat (£5.95) which dries really quickly, which you'd expect given the name, but it also makes your nails look incredibly glossy.

Step 9: Clean up.
This is the step that will make your pedicure look more professional and less DIY. If you're not the neatest at applying nail polish, don't worry. Simply pour a bit of nail polish remover into the lid and use a thin brush to wipe away and neaten up the edges of your nail polish. If you've gone a bit too close to your cuticles then this is the perfect time to even it all out.

Step 10 : Apply a cuticle oil. 
Step nine can be a bit drying so apply a good amount of cuticle oil (£8.99) and massage it in. Go gently though just in case your manicure isn't fully dry.

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14 May 2015

NOTD // W7 Mosaic

notd w7 mosaic nail polish rottenotter rotten otter blog
Supplies used... 
Orly Bonder Base Coat
W7 Mosaic// two coats

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13 May 2015

The Repurchases 006

Life NK Daily Fix Muscle Relief Bath Soak | £18 £4.50 // Although technically I haven't finished this bath soak yet, I knew because it had been reduced to such a low price that when I do finally get round to it being empty and wanting to repurchase it would either be sold out or full price. Less than a fiver for a giant bottle is a pretty good bargain. If you've heard of the Mio Liquid Yoga then this is pretty similar. It has more of a shower gel or bubble bath formula but has the same smell and pretty much the same results. The ingredients might be better in the Mio formula but I can use this on a more regular basis as it isn't as expensive. After writing this post, I've just seen that this isn't on the side anymore so I'm pleased I bought another bottle or two!

Healgel Intensive | £37.50 // I got a mini tube of Healgel Intensive in a beauty box a few months ago and fell in love with it immediately, so much so that I went and bought the full size. I mainly use this on areas of my skin that have changed and scarred from years of eczema and scratching in my sleep. It's probably going to take a while to notice any changes but I have also been using it on spots and dry patches and it's been working amazingly well. I had a giant spot appear on my cheek and even just after one application of this really helped to reduce it and will help to stop it from scarring.

Mio Workout Wonder Invigorating Muscle Motivating Gel | £21 // This is another product I have tried from a beauty box, this time Latest In Beauty, and have fallen in love with. It's a really unique product and I haven't tried anything similar to it. It's a cream that sort of turns into a gel when you start rubbing it into your skin. It has a very strong spearmint scent which I love and also contains v-tonic, arnica, natural magnesium, horse chestnut and murumuru butter to increase circulation, ease muscle aches and inflammation. It's a good one to keep in your beauty cabinet and you can pull it out whenever you need to. I've used it on sore necks and shoulders before and it works wonders. I also get a really sore and achy lower back during that time of the month and this really helps to soothe it.

Liz Earle Eye Bright | £13.25 // I've featured this in another The Repurchases post before as it's something I buy again and again and probably always will. This is a great eye make-up remover but I usually just use it as a treatment if my eyes are feeling sore and irritated or if I wake up with puffiness. I pour a bit onto two cotton pads and place them over my eyes and relax for ten minutes or so. You can also keep this in the fridge to make it even more soothing, especially during the summer and hey fever season.

Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara | £13 // This is another one that I've written about buying before and is probably my third or forth tube. This is the only thing I wear on my bottom lashes and I can't see myself trying anything different for a long time. It doesn't flake off or smudge throughout the day and my lashes still look just as black at the end of the day compared to when I just applied it.

Benefit Roller Lash Mascara | £19.50 // This is a fairly new discovery and I bought the full size tube pretty much straight after I tried it the first time. I bought Glamour magazine just so I could get the mini size. I really like the two other Benefit mascaras and this new release is just as good in my opinion. This gives so much length to my lashes and enough definition and volume without being too over the top. My lashes are naturally quite curly and I don't find my lashes drop throughout the day. This would be a good layering mascara as well for nights out if you pair it with one that is good for volume.

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12 May 2015

Mini Reviews 041 // The Body Shop | Origins | La Roche-Posay

mini reviews the body shop la roche posay origins rottenotter rotten otter blog
The Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil | £10 // I have both the chamomile cleansing balm and oil and I have to say I prefer the latter. This bottle, with near enough the same amount of use, has lasted a lot longer than the balm has. You only get 10ml more but I find I need to use less product to remove make-up or cleanse my skin. The balm eventually turns into an oil when you massage it into your skin so why not choose the one that lasts longer and is therefore cheaper in the long run.  [see caroline hirons post]

Origins High-Potency Night-A-Mins | £34.50 // I have a love hate relationship with face moisturisers as they’re either too heavy and break me out or aren’t moisturising enough for my dry skin. Night-a-mins is the perfect balance of the two though and I’m half way through my jar and I’m not bored of it yet. I love the orange scent but I would prefer it if it wasn’t an added perfume. It's moisturising without feeling heavy, it sort of feels a bit gel like in texture which makes it a dream to apply and it sinks in almost instantly. This is one to go for if your skin is looking dull as it really helps to brighten the skin and makes you look renewed when you wake up in the morning. It’s a bit of a treatment moisturiser hybrid as it keeps skin hydrated as well as removing dead layers of skin. It’s packed full of Vitamins C, E & H to help keep your skin looking as good as it can.

La Roche-Posay Cicaplast Baume B5 | £5.50 for 40ml or £11.45 for 100ml // This is another eczema product I can't live without. I get especially bad eczema on the skin between my nose and mouth and this is one of the only creams I've found, which isn't a prescription, to work. A lot of creams only further irritate this area of my face but this really helps to soothe my skin and reduces the redness. I was reading thought the comment on a post on Jessica's blog and by the end of it I had a list of about twenty new products to try to soothe and calm the eczema on my face. One of them was this cream from La Roche-Posay which I actually already had in my stash. I originally bought this for the eczema on my legs and arms but it didn't work well so it was put to the back of the drawer. I decided to test it out on my face anyway as I had nothing to lose and it really impressed me. It soothed the eczema and made the dry patches of skin disappear, very similar to how the Mario Badescu Control Cream worked, just without the added steroids. It’s described as a balm but to me it’s more of a thick moisturiser. If my eczema is particularly bad then the skin will crack and split and become so dry and irritated but this really does work and after a couple of applications I can really see a difference. I need to get into the habit of using this when my eczema isn’t flaring up as I think it would help to stop future irritations.
Specifically adapted to suit the skincare needs of the entire family, this compensating formula enables skin to recover comfort once more following dermatitis and epidermal alterations, such as chapped skin and intense dryness. Its highly reparative formulation includes Panthenol concentrated at 5%, plus Madecassoside which acts as an anti-inflammatory and collagen synthesiser. The triple-action of copper, zinc and manganese encourages optimal skin recovery, while antibacterial agents ensure long-lasting protection.
I wish this was available in a smaller size tube though as I only use a tiny amount each time and the product went bad before I could finish it therefore making it more expensive than it really it. Since buying my first tube it is now available in a 40ml tube which is a lot better than 100ml but I think I’d still struggle to finish it before the use by date.

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11 May 2015

NOTD // China Glaze Light As Air

notd china glaze light as air nail polish rottenotter rotten otter blog
Supplies used... 
Orly Bonder Base Coat

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10 May 2015

Project Sample Use Up 031

project-sample-use-up-rottenotter-rotten-otter-blog 1
The Body Shop Chocomania Body Butter // I was quite disappointed with this body butter from The Body Shop and I normally love them. While I thought the scent was ok, a bit sickly sweet to be used all the time, it was the formula I didn’t get on with. No matter how little I used, it felt incredibly greasy on my skin and like it was just sitting on top of my skin and never actually sunk in. In the end, not wanting to throw a product away, I used it as an overnight foot cream with a pair of socks so it didn’t matter too much that it wasn’t sinking in properly. I think this was a limited edition scent, but I wouldn’t buy it again even if it was still available.

R+Co Gemstone Colour Shampoo & Conditioner | £22 //
I love the design of R+Co products, even the sample sachets look great. I don’t have coloured hair, but this was a nice shampoo and conditioner. I don’t think I’d buy the full size, but I do want to try some of the styling products from R+Co.  

Champneys Spa Indulgence Distant Shores Body Scrub & Bubble Heaven | £10 & £2.50 //
I love the scent of the Distant Shores product but again these two were a little disappointing. The body scrub was ok, but I found I used nearly the entire mini tub in one go which would mean the full size would be used up pretty quickly as well. It also wasn’t very abrasive. The bubble bath, while it smelt nice, didn’t really create many bubbles and it felt more like a shower gel. I’m still happily working my way through the body butter which I would buy the full size of, but I’m going to give these two a miss.

Estee Lauder Sumptuous Bold Volume Lifting Mascara | £21 //
I got this mini tube of mascara with a perfume purchase and I’m glad I got to try it. I probably wouldn’t buy the full size, but it worked really well at creating length and definition as well as volume without clumping or looking too over the top for every day. It didn’t give a massive amount of volume to my lashes which I expected given the name as my lashes still looked pretty natural.

Aromatherapy Relax Deep Bath & Shower Oil | £45 // I love these bath and shower oils from Aromatherapy as they smell amazing, create an incredibly moisturising bath and you only need a tiny amount. The Relax Deep scent is vetivert, chamomile and sandalwood and is one of my favourites. I still have quite a few of these mini bottles floating around so I don’t need to buy a full size just yet.

Benefit Porefessional PRO Balm Primer | £24.50 // I’ve lost count of the number of these mini tubes I’ve had and still have, but I’m happy that I haven’t had to buy the full size. I really like how this makes my skin look on its own as well as under makeup but I do have to be careful how I apply it as it can tend to roll up on my skin which I don’t really like. I haven’t tried too many primers so I’m still undecided if I would buy the full size or not.

Margaret Dabbs Intensive Hydrating Foot Lotion | £25 // I loved the lemongrass scent of this foot lotion from Margaret Dabbs, but I didn’t find it particularly moisturising. It would be a good one to use during the day but personally if I’m going to be applying a foot cream, I’m more likely to use a richer cream at night and put on a pair of socks.

Margaret Dabbs Intensive Treatment Foot Oil | £22 // This has the same lemongrass scent as the lotion but since it’s an oil, it definitely felt more moisturising. It sunk in quickly though which I liked. I have a million and one foot creams to finish so I won’t be buying the full size anytime soon although I will keep it in mind for the future.

Origins Make A Difference Plus + Rejuvenating Treatment x 2 | £34.50 // This was one of my favourites a year or two ago and I hadn’t used it for a while. I prefer to use this when my skin is playing up a bit and I have some breakouts as it works a treat at calming my skin down. I’m currently using the moisturiser version so I won’t be buying another tub of the treatment just yet.

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08 May 2015

Disappointing Products 003

disappointing-products-003-rottenotter-rotten-otter-blog Sarah Chapman Skinesis Overnight Hand And Nail Treatment | £36 // I’ve got a full review of this coming up next month so I’ll only talk about it briefly here but let me just say I wish I had saved my money for something else. It is the scent that I just cannot stand and although this isn’t the most important thing about a product, when you’re spending over £35 on a product and the scent makes you do not want to use it, it’s not very good. The actual product itself is ok but nothing amazing and definitely not worth the price in my opinion. It’s one of those oils that feels like it’s just sitting on the top of your skin and never really sinks in. It’s an overnight treatment and I’m ok about going to bed with slightly tacky hands but completely greasy is a step too far. I just wish I had smelt and tried it in person before I bought it!

Kiehl's creamy avocado eye treatment | £33 // This is another one I wish I had tried in a store first before I bought it. I was at my wits end with the eczema around me eyes so I was pretty much ok with trying anything. This cream had been raved about my countless people and some who had similar issues as me with dry skin and allergic reactions around their eyes. It’s way too heavy and thick for me to use on a daily basis, but I hoped it would be good as a sort of treatment when I needed it. I think the main problem for me is how it sinks in. It’s quite hard to describe but as you’re patting/rubbing it in it almost feels like it turns into water and that it’s never going to sink in. You’ll probably only understand this if you’ve tried it. I bought the larger tub as it was the only one in stock and I really wish I had either waited or bought it in store as I’m never going to finish this and I hate wasting products.

Ojon Damage Reverse Restorative Hair Treatment Plus | £19 for 50ml or £34.50 for 100ml // This is another one people had raved about and I was really disappointed in it especially considering how little product you get for the price. In the pot, it’s a solid oil that you’re meant to warm up in your hands and apply it to dry hair once it has turned into an oil. No matter how hot my hands are, I always struggle with this turning into an oil and am usually left with chunks of balm throughout my hair as it’s almost impossible to distribute evenly. It also smells horrible and I can never really tell a difference to my hair after I’ve used it.

Bumble And Bumble Curl Conscious Holding Foam | £23.50 // I ran out of the curling mousse I was using a month or two ago and I fancied a change so I went searching the internet. Despite reading through pretty much all of the hair posts on The Beauty Department, I couldn't really find the exact product I was looking for. I knew I didn't want a cream and instead wanted a mousse that would enhance my natural curl which is pretty hard to find. After a look on Space NK, I ordered the Sachajuan Hair Mousse as well as this one from Bumble And Bumble. The description of the product looked promising and it sounded a bit like the KMS foam mousse I was using before and liked.
Durable hold and curl definition
What: Keep curls together regardless of heat or humidity with flexible, durable hold.
Who: A must for curly types in need of more hold and structure.
When: After using Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner or Nourishing Masque.
How: Dispense a pea-size amount and activate in hands; apply to damp hair from the nape forward, roots to ends; heat-style or air-dry.
So I washed my hair and let it towel dry for ten minutes or so. I then followed the instructions, I must have only used a tiny amount, but I found it pretty much impossible to distribute evenly throughout my hair. Since my hair was damp I couldn't really tell how it would work so I let it air dry. After a couple of hours there was parts of my hair that still weren't dry which was a bit odd and when I touched my hair it was really sticky in the parts where I obviously wasn't able to distribute it properly. All I could do was go rinse it out and use a different product. I decided to try it again a couple of weeks later and the same thing happened. I hate the thought of just throwing away a product I've spent over £20 on, but I really can't see a way of using it. I also wouldn't describe it as a foam. Despite trying to "activate" it, it just stayed as a sticky gel.

You can read about the other products that have disappointed me here.

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07 May 2015

NOTD // China Glaze Something Sweet

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Supplies used... 
Orly Bonder Base Coat

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06 May 2015

Details // Adding Greenery

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I am terrible at keeping plants alive. I don't know what it is but no matter how little or often I water them, if they're in sunlight or shade, for whatever reason, they always die. I've even managed to kill a cactus before. One day when I was doing my weekly food shop in Asda I added a money plant to my basket and four years later it's still alive and looking pretty good. I've recently replanted it into a bigger pot, the orange and blue one in the photo, so it'll have even more room to grow.

Since then I've added even more house plants into my room but have kept along the same lines as the money plant. I've gone for plants that don't need much attention or water. I have a mix of money plants, succulents, cacti and peace lilies as well as a Swiss cheese plant. I'm also hoping to make another terrarium once I can find a place to buy mini succulents, so far all I'm finding is larger ones.

I just love how much of a difference a couple of plants in a room can make. I've even added a house plant board to my Pinterest. To say I've become obsessed is a bit of an understatement. I'd love to eventually have a whole house full of plants and hanging planters as well. One can dream!

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05 May 2015

Mini Reviews 040 // The Body Shop | Pai

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The Body Shop Almond Hand & Nail Cream | £5 for 30ml or £11 for 100ml //  I love almond scented products but I was a bit disappointed in the scent of this one which is unusual for TBS products. I imagined and hoped it would be a marzipan type of scent but it’s more of a nutty almond scent, if you see what I mean. As far as the cream itself goes it’s nice for an everyday while in the office type of hand cream but it isn’t thick enough to be used at night. As it has a lighter formula, it does sink in quickly and my hands aren’t left feeling sticky or greasy. I wish I had tried this in store before I bought it online as I probably wouldn’t have bought it. I do love the metal packaging but I say skip this and try the Hemp Hand Protector instead, one of my all time favourites.

The Body Shop Africa Honey & Beeswax Hands & Foot Butter | £10 // Let me start with the packaging, apart from the metal tubes TBS offer, this has to be one of my favourites. It has a very thick almost butter like consistency which means it is incredibly moisturising and makes ther perfect overnight treatment. Apply some of this and pop on a pair of cotton gloves or socks and you’ll wake up with incredibly soft skin in the morning. I find this really helps with the eczema on my hands and feet and after a few applications it’s pretty much gone. It has quite a subtle honey scent which makes a change from other products that I use but one that I really like.

Pai Fragonia & Seabuckthorn Hand Cream | £16 // I originally bought this as I thought it would be a good hand cream to use when the eczema on my hands flared up. Unfortunately there was something in it that irritated my skin even more than it already was. I have no idea what it was that irritated my skin, it doesn’t contain added fragrance so I can’t even blame it on that. It could simply be a coincidence that my eczema got worse but I stopped using it until the flare up had disappeared. Once my skin settled down and I was able to use this hand cream again without any irritation, I really liked it. It has a slightly thicker than normal formula which meant it was perfect to use at night. The pump packaging also meant I was using just the right amount of product and my hands never felt too greasy even if I was only going to bed. It’s a bit of a mixed product for me and probably because more often than not I have eczema flare ups on my hands I probably won’t buy another tube unless this changes.

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04 May 2015

NOTD // China Glaze Keep Calm Paint On

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Supplies used... 
Orly Bonder Base Coat

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03 May 2015

Lifestyle Favourites 004

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My family and I watched Guardians of the galaxy at Christmas and I instantly fell in love with the soundtrack so I ordered the CD straight away. It's been years since I've bought a CD but I love being able to listen to this while I'm cooking. If you haven't listened to it then I really urge you to do so!

I am completely obsessed with Reese's Pieces at the moment and it doesn't help that they sell them in my local Tesco at the bottom of my road. I love anything peanut butter but these are just amazing. They're simply peanut butter in a candy shell but they're so addictive. Also mixing these with a pack of chocolate M&M's makes them even better.

Plants in general have been a favourite of mine these past couple of months but I'm trying my hand at growing succulents from leaves and the small baby plants. I tried cutting a leaf off my money plant and had it sitting on top of soil for a while but nothing happened and no roots appeared. I'm hoping because these baby plants have more to them then they'll grow roots more easily. If anyone has had any success and have any tips then please let me know!

Finally I have been able to find a pair of black Nike Free Runs in my size! I've wanted a pair ever since I bought a neon coral pair a few years ago but my size was always out of stock. I finally found them on Zalando and I couldn't be happier with them. They're incredibly comfy and look great with a pair of jeans for casual days.

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01 May 2015

Empites // April 2015

april-2015-beauty-empties-products-i-have-used-up-finished-rottenotter-rotten-otter-blog Liz Earle Eye Bright | £13.25 // This is one of my staples in my skin care routine and I will always have a bottle or two in my cupbaords. I used to use this solely as my eye make-up remover but now micellar waters have become more popular and easier to get a hold of, I've been saving it as a treatment. Often when I'm tired or haven't had enough sleep my eyes get sore and irritated so I pour some onto a cotton pad, place them onto my eyes and sit back and relax for ten minutes or so. It works amazingly well and my eyes always feel soothed after I use it. It's also perfect for hey fever days. I've already put in an order for another bottle.

Oilatum Junior Bath Additive | £9.19 // This is what I use in my bath during the week to soothe my eczema. I tend to save the majority of my bath products for the weekend when I take longer baths and stick to using eczema friendly products in quick baths throughout the week. The only reason I'm using the Junior version is because this was the only one in stock when I made the order. I don't think there is much of a difference between this one and the adult version. I'm currently using E45 Bath Additive but once I finish it, I'll be buying this one again. It emulsifies when it comes into contact with the water and it's very moisturising.

Aveeno Bath & Shower Oil | £8.19 // This is another one that I use during the week in baths and it's one of my favourites. It looks like a shower gel until you wash it away as it emulsifies when it touches water. It feels incredibly moisturising on the skin and really helps to soothe my eczema. I don't feel like I need to follow up with a moisturiser afterwards either which is always a bonus as I hate the feeling of wearing clothes after applying a lotion. I'm currently using A-derma Cleansing Oil which I like but don't like the smell of so I'll be repurchasing this once I've finished the A-derma.

Lush Golden Egg Bath Bomb Melt // I loved this bath bomb melt hybrid and wish I had bought more than one. The outside is the bath melt and inside is the bath bomb and I hope Lush make more like this. It fizzed away quite slowly and was incredibly moisturising, I didn't need to follow up with a body lotion afterwards. Had I known how moisturising it was, I probably would have tried to cut it in half so I could have got two uses out of it.

The Body Shop Raspberry Body Scrub | £13 // I love the raspberry scent of this body scrub but it isn't the most effective. The exfoliating particles are too small and I feel like you need to use a lot of it to feel like it's working. I'm currently using The Body Shop Frosted Cranberry Body Scrub so I don't need to think about buying a new body scrub just yet. I have the blueberry version of this one but I don't think I'd buy it again.

Soap And Glory Righteous Body Butter | £10.50 //  I wouldn’t repurchase this one just yet as it is heavily fragranced and although I’m pretty sure this isn’t what causes my eczema to flare up on my body, it doesn’t really help it either. I only had a small amount of product left in this giant tub so I’ve no idea why it’s taken me so long to finally finish it. Although the sugar crush scent is my favourite from S&G, this original is a close second. I am currently using the A-derma cream.

Soap And Glory Hand Dream Super Cream | £7 // I prefer this to the original Hand Food from Soap & Glory. I find it more moisturising and it sinks in quicker. I loved the scent but it did irritate my eczema so I wont be buying this again for a while . I'm currently using the body shop almond hand cream which is working better and doesn't irritate my skin.

Ojon Revitalizing Mist | £20.50 // I loved everything about this leave-in conditioner and I can't believe it took me so long to start using it after getting it for Christmas the year before last. It keeps my hair from feeling dry as well as fighting frizz. The scent is really nice as well. I'm currently using Sachajuan Leave-in Conditioner which I am liking just as much.

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