Monday, 31 March 2014

Review | JOICO Smooth Cure Conditioner

My love for JOICO products has recently extended to the Smooth Cure Sulfate-free Conditioner. The Smooth Cure range by JOICO aims to make frizzy, curly or coarse hair sleek and manageable.  I feel like this conditioner was made for my hair as it leaves my hair buttery soft after just 5 minutes of being left on. Seriously impressed.

I must admit I'm a little confused as to whether this conditioner counts as an intensive treatment. It's a lot runnier than my staple deep conditioner, JOICO Moisture Recovery Treatment Balm (reviewed here), but somehow seems to work just as well. I've been mostly using it by itself in place of my usual deep conditioner for 5 to 15 minutes in the last few weeks and it gets my hair so smooth.

This conditioner smells absolutely beautiful and the scent lingers ever so gently when my hair has been rinsed. The main ingredients are Keratin, Brazil Nut Oil, Tucuma Palm and a lot of stuff I don't recognise that even a Google search couldn't remedy (particularly Pentapeptide-29 Cysteinamide and Pentapeptide-30 Cysteinamide, more protein?) If your hair doesn't take well to protein you might have to avoid this product, but so far it's been great for my hair. I even used it after my last henna treatment and it sorted out the usual post-henna hardness a treat!

There's also a high concentration of Amodimethicone in this conditioner (it's 4th on the ingredients list). This ingredient seems like a strange inclusion to me given that this particular conditioner and it's shampoo counterpart are sulphate-free (cone build-up can usually only be removed by harsher shampoos). Having said that, I haven't looked at the accompanying shampoo or it's ingredients. It may well have an alternative ingredient to sulphates which is strong enough to remove cones.

Out of all the JOICO products I've tried this was by far the cheapest, simply as 1litre of this conditioner cost me just £12.99 from TK Maxx. The 300ml version of this conditioner usually retails at around £13.95 online and in salons. I usually pay around £15-£20, for the 500ml of my beloved Moisture Recovery Treatment Balm which unfortunately I couldn't find in TK Maxx too.

I'd love to try more of the Sooth Cure range but for now I'm trying to change my product junkie ways and only buy hair products I need.

Have you tried anything by JOICO? 

Lesley x

Sunday, 30 March 2014

Outfit Snippets | Primark Pink Trousers

T-Shirt & Necklace - Forever 21 | Trousers - Primark | Shoes - Dorothy Perkins | Watch - Armani Exchange

When it comes to clothes my style is pretty simple and I never really wear anything bold. The clothes that have been seeing the most wear lately have been grey and muted shades too. I thought it was about time I starting breaking out the pastels seeing as it's finally Spring and I love pastel colours! I hardly ever wear pink but these trousers were such a steal from Primark I had to buy them.

I'll admit that finding what to wear with these trousers was a little tricky as my style is so understated. I ended up pairing the pastel trousers with a textured white tee and some beige leather brogues which I bought the other day.

Do you like wearing pastels?

Lesley x

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Henna | March 2014

I decided to do an impromptu henna treatment last Wednesday. Weirdly I always end up craving a henna treatment as it leaves my hair feeling so strong and glossy afterwards.

I've been using henna since January 2012 but in the last year or so I've been using it less often with treatments spaced 4-5 months apart. The last time I used henna back in October I mixed it with a little bit of Indigo hoping to get a more brunette result. In short, I didn't use enough indigo and my hair kept its red tinge but I've decided I love the colour as it is.

For my last treatment I did a henna gloss, which is basically henna mixed with conditioner. The ratio was about 2/3 henna with 1/3 conditioner. I added the usual suspects (lemon oil, lavender oil and chamomile tea) to Yemeni henna to get the dye release first and added conditioner before I applied it to my hair. I said in my last post I'd try using just Coconut milk and henna, following the recipe on this blog, but I completely forgot.

Regardless, I love the results and the colour is richer now as it was fading slightly. My hair has also got that 'pick me up' it needed. I've been neglecting it in the last few months where I was getting bored with my hair and frustrated with the mix of natural/texlaxed/relaxed textures. I think I might try and do another treatment sooner next time or maybe try just applying henna to my ends to breathe a bit of life into them. Hopefully I'll finally try that recipe with Coconut milk!

Have you tried henna?

Lesley x

Monday, 24 March 2014

Black Beauty & Hair April/May 2014

The latest of issue of Black Beauty & Hair is out now.

This issue is the Bridal supplement so there's lots of info on getting your hair and makeup perfect for the big day. Also inside is an interview with TV presenter AJ Odudu and stunningly beautiful Lupita Nyongo, an article on how to get great skin and my article 'No Heat Challenge'.

I honestly believe that drastically reducing the amount I rely on using heat on my hair helped a lot with retaining length and having the longest hair I've ever had. No Heat Challenge is all about staving off heat and outlines alternatives to those blowfryers, hot wands and straighteners. There's a sneak peak of my article below.

Have you got your copy?

Lesley x

Saturday, 22 March 2014

NOTD | Maybelline Color Show Mauve Kiss

This is just a quick post on my current nail of the day (NOTD). I'm wearing Maybelline Color Show Nail Lacquer in 150 Mauve Kiss (£2.99). It's a a very muted purple and not usually something I'd wear but I absolutely love this colour. Originally I was looking for something more brown based for a nude nail colour but this caught my eye whilst browsing Boots the other day. I also bought 381 Love this Sweater which is a very similar shade but more on the pink side.

I haven't bought much from Maybelline since my teens and I know it's a hugely popular drugstore brand but I have no idea how good their makeup is currently. The prices of the nail lacquers are very affordable and it only took two coats to get a perfect coverage. So far there's been no chipping either and I didn't bother with a base or top coat like I normally do when applying this polish. I'll definitely be picking up a few more shades of this polish in the soon.

Have you tried anything by Maybelline?

Lesley x

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Review | Benefit Gimme Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel

My brow routine hasn't changed that much over the last year, until now that is with the launch of Benefit's Gimme Brow (£17.50). I'm in love with fibre lash mascara and essentially this product is the all-in-one brow version.

I bought Gimme Brow a couple of weeks ago and I'm impressed with how quick it is to shape my eyebrows now. I have wonky and sparse brows so I always feel like my makeup isn't complete if they aren't filled in. However, I don't want to spend ages trying to draw on the perfect brows every morning. The formula for Gimme works by sticking to the eyebrow hairs and skin to fill them out with just a few strokes of the product. This gives my brows a groomed and naturally filled in appearance so easily. After I've used this product my brows are set perfectly and the formula lasts fantastically throughout the day. If I have time, I prefer to use Gimme Brow in conjunction with the Sleek Makeup Brow Kit for a more bold brow, but the product works great by itself.

The actual product is tiny! The wand is so small, it's perfect for getting just the right amount of product onto my brows without any mishaps. This only comes in two colours, light medium and medium deep. I got medium deep and it suits the colour of my brows so well. Here's how it looks on with no other products used on my brows.

I don't usually spend a lot on makeup (with the exception of foundation and concealer) so this product was more on the expensive side for me but I'd happily buy it again when it runs out. I got Gimme Brow from Debenhams as they were doing 10% off beauty products 2 weeks ago. It's also available from other department stores nationwide and online retailers.

Would you or have you tried Benefit Gimme Brow?

Lesley x

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Review | Sleek Makeup Glo Face & Body Highlighter

I love contouring my face, though I rarely have time to, and the Sleek Makeup Glo Face & Body Highlighter in Bronze Baby (£6.49) is the latest addition to my contour routine.

I've tried other highlighting products by Sleek Makeup and regularly use the Face Form but so far I'm really impressed with this product. You can use the strips of colour alone or swirl them together. The product is intended to be multi-use. You can use the different shades as highlighters, bronzers or even as eyeshadow. I've preferred using the product as a highlighter and apply them mixed together on my cheekbones, down the bridge of my nose, my eyebrow bone and on my cupids bow with my Real Techniques Setting Brush. Occasionally I use the bottom strip of colour as a bronzer. Using this product really provides the finishing touch to my makeup, I only wish I had the time to use it more often!

As you can see from the swatches, the pigmentation of the shades in Bronze Baby is good and the shades are very shimmery. Bronze Baby is perfect for medium tone skin. The product comes in 2 other variations, Peach Shimmer and Gold Digga. The former is more suited to lighter skintones, whereas the latter compliments darker tones.

The product is fairly long-lasting and easy to blend into the skin, so overall a great product for the relatively low price.

I got the Glo Face & Body Highlighter from Superdrug instore, but it's also available from sleekmakeup.com.
Do you use a highlighter?

Lesley x