Today I have a couple of products that were hits for me during the month of May, and I also have a ‘miss’ product that left me feeling both annoyed and disappointed. If you look at the photo above, you will probably notice one thing – the month of May was all about Moisturisation. I’m someone who loves Winter – I love homemade soups, comfy onesies, fluffy slippers, a warm snuggly bed & hearty stews. What I don’t like during the colder months, is dry skin. So I always try to start quite early on in the Autumn / Winter season with using nourishing and moisturising products.
My favourite product for the month of May, and one that I still can’t put down, is the INOAR Professional Argan Treatment Oil. I’m pretty sure you have seen this oil mentioned on a couple of other South African beauty blogs, and with good reason too, it’s simply beautiful. This gel-like oil has me wrapped around its little finger, because it smells heavenly. I’m inclined to say it smells better than Moroccanoil products, and yet I have no words to describe the scent – it’s very similar to Moroccanoil, but a bit more sophisticated.
I really wish you guys could smell it. Anyway, it’s not a monthly favourite because it smells amazing (that would be silly, right?), here are my top 3 reasons why I love this oil so much. 1. What sets this Argan Oil apart from Moroccanoil is the ingredients – Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil is listed first on INOAR’s oil, whereas it is listed as third on the Moroccanoil ingredients list. Ingredients are always listed in proportional order with highest quantities at the top of the list, that means the INOAR oil contains more Argan Oil. In fact, INOAR claims it contains 9% Argan oil (which is currently the highest percentage on the market) followed by a couple of silicones, olive oil and aroma substances. 2. The consistency of this oil is thick and goopy, yet when you warm it up between your hands and run it through your hair, it is absorbed almost immediately. Something to remember is a good Argan Oil will be thick but will disappear into the hair / skin almost instantly. 3. The result of using this is smooth, shiny, frizz-free hair with a floral scent that lasts for the whole day (I always keep sniffing the ends of my hair whenever I use this). INOAR Argan Treatment Oil can be used as a pre-styling product, or as a finishing product. This treatment oil retails for R 434,00 (60ml bottle) at selected hair salons. You can also phone 012 686 7067 to find your nearest stockist.
I think I should do a blog post about Argan Oils – what you should look out for, how you can use them, good / bad ingredients etc? Would you be interested in that?
When Ashleigh first mentioned the NUXE Rêve de Miel Ultra-Nourishing Lip Balm, I was intrigued (because she made it sound like a miracle balm) but then kind of forgot to check where I could purchase it in South Africa. I was on Kalahari the one day and started looking at their new beauty section, and when I saw the little balm was sold on their website, I knew I had to get it. I then quickly looked if there was anywhere else online (or in-store) that sold this balm at a better price, but couldn’t find another stockist (at the time) at all. So anyway, let it be known I will not be ordering from Kalahari again because it took close to 7 weeks for my order to arrive (SEVEN WEEKS for a local order – the insanity is too much for me to handle).
This lip balm is unlike any other lip balm I have tried (eos, Burt’s Bees, Baby Lips have taken the backseat), the consistency reminds me of the Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Lip Balm (thick and non-glossy), the scent reminds me of the Burt’s Bees Orange Essence Facial Cleanser (a refreshingly zesty orange scent) but the best part is: It lasts for AGES on the lips. I apply this balm to my lips as part of my night time routine (just before I go to bed) and when I wake up in the morning, there is still balm on my lips. Eight hours of constant nourishment and moisturising is exactly what you want and that means the Rêve de Miel lip balm is a winner in my book! And with ingredients such as beeswax, sweet almond oil , shea butter, vitamin E, grapefruit peel oil, lemon peel oil, honey & rose oil – you want it to stay on the lips for as long as possible. It’s no surprise to me that one is sold every 28 seconds throughout the world. This little pot of gold retails for R 130,00 – R 150,00 at selected Truworths stores, as well as online at Kalahari.
I actually don’t know why I haven’t mentioned the Clarins Instant Light Brush-On Perfector in a monthly favourites blog post before, because I absolutely adore this double-duty product. It’s a wrinkle-reducing, imperfection-concealing, highlighting concealer. It’s very lightweight, and yet it provides good coverage to hide those pesky undereye circles. The best part? It contains Hyaluronic Acid (seals in moisture around the delicate eye area) and oat extract (skin tightening benefits), plus creates a moisturising base for additional concealer (for those days when you wake up looking like a panda).
I use Shade 2 (Medium Beige), it’s creamy without being too thick or oily and lasts all day with minimal creasing. I apply it is after my foundation but before I apply my powder. This is a twist-up pen, so you twist the bottom and the product dispenses through the brush. Apply to the areas on the face where you would like to conceal / highlight using the brush, then pat with a ring finger to blend into the skin. The Instant Light Brush-On Perfector retails for R 315,00 at selected Truworths, Woolworths, Foschini, Stuttafords and Edgars stores, as well as the online Clarins SA store.
I have a new obsession…and it’s called Morgan Taylor. I first came across Morgan Taylor nail polishes at the beginning of this year in a Stuttafords store. I looked at the array of colours but didn’t think much of the brand because I am a die-hard Essie and OPI fan (my nails are snobs, I know). Fast forward a couple of months later when Retail Box started stocking the brand, so I placed an order because there was a specific nail polish called ‘New York State Of Mind’ that I just had to get my hands on (check it out below).
So in the past couple of months, my Morgan Taylor nail polish collection has grown from owning 1 to now owning 9 already. The reason for this, is because the polishes are beautiful – some of the shades I have never seen in another brand before (google Morgan Taylor Best Dressed and you’ll see what I mean), plus the polishes last on the nails for a good 4+ days. The creme polishes are top notch – opaque with one swipe, plus super glossy too.
Ok, so I wore the heck out of Perfect Match in May – it looks amazing with a matte top coat too! Perfect Match is a creamy neutral polish with a rosy tint & silver micro shimmer (almost unnoticeable), the perfect nude. I’m a big fan of nude polishes with a subtle pink or purple undertone (I feel it adds warmth to pale skin and doesn’t look like you’re wearing baby poop on your fingertips), so Perfect Match is right up my alley. It’s subtle enough for the office, and yet perfect for casual weekends or a girls’ night out. Morgan Taylor polishes retail for R 110,00 at selected Stuttafords and Dis-Chem stores (the Dis-Chem in Brooklyn Mall has a massive stand filled with so many beautiful shades), plus online at Retail Box, Takealot and Rubybox. Next on my list of Morgan Taylor polishes to get? Mint Chocolate Chip and Rhythm & Blues (wow!).
Above is a swatch of Morgan Taylor Perfect Match.
As mentioned May was all about getting a head start on moisturising my skin before the icy cold Winter arrived, and the Balm Balm Frankincense Light Facial Oil played a big part in prepping my skin for the dry months ahead. Frankincense is known as the king of all essential oils, and because of that it is one of the more expensive oils. It is a tissue healer, it rejuvenates the skin, it aids in fading old scars, and reduces inflammation. It is also antiseptic, which means it will fight bacterial skin infections (blemishes and acne). It can help to tone and tighten skin, eliminate sun spots, smoothen micro-wrinkles around the eye and cheek areas, whilst replacing old, dying cells with new, healthy ones.
I’ve mentioned the Balm Balm Little Miracle Rosehip Serum (facial oil) here on the blog numerous times, but after using the Frankincense oil, I actually prefer this one because it is so light, it has little to no scent, but still moisturises the skin really well. I find my skin can sometimes feel tight after cleansing, so when I apply this oil to my skin, it feels comfortable (not too oily and not dehydrated either). Balm Balm is an organic skincare brand, which means I don’t have to worry about the ingredients. I find 3 drops to be more than enough for my face and neck area, which means this bottle will last you a good amount of time. My little bottle is just about finished (I’ve been using it since December), and I will definitely be purchasing a new one. The Balm Balm Frankincense Facial Oil retails for R 188,00 (10ml) in the Luhla online shop or R 200,00 (10ml) in The Spa Shop online shop.
My flop (un-favourite) for last month was the L’Oreal Elnett Satin Heat Protectant Styling Spray – this is the product I wanted to do a separate review on but after thinking about it, it actually doesn’t deserve a full-on review. I have tried to make this heat protectant spray work in every way possible – spraying on damp hair and blow drying, spraying on dry hair and curling, spraying very little onto the hair, and spraying liberally. Nothing worked. I’ve read a couple of reviews online and it seems I’m not the only one unhappy with this product, people have had the same issues I had. Let me list them for you: It takes away the shine of your hair. It removes the smoothness of the hair and replaces it with a dry, crunchy feeling. It also adds a slight sticky feeling to the hair, even after using a heat tool on it. It unfortunately doesn’t hold a curl better than any other heat protectant I’ve tried, even thought it promises waves for 3 days. The nozzle dispenses way too much product, it’s not a fine mist but rather a heavy spray. While I’m sure there are people who love these styling sprays from L’Oreal, I am unfortunately not a fan.