Category Archives: Ethical

Smelling of roses

laiafarrangraves.pngThere are night creams and then there are night creams, and the Wild Rose Advanced Repair Sleeping Facial from KORRES, is definitely in the latter category.

It’s a night cream with a difference, because it acts like a facial and repairs your skin while you sleep, providing intense hydration. It also contains vitamin C for extra potent skin brightening and radiance, reinforcing the natural cell renewal process overnight. When you first apply it, its velvety texture literally melts away into your skin leaving it smelling simply delicious – sweet with a hint of flower. It’s intensely hydrating and soft on the skin, so it’s suitable for all skin types, and contains wild rose oil and hyaluronic acid to help combat dry skin – something I’m always battling with. I’ve been using it for a couple of weeks now, and especially love how nurturing it feels when I apply it, and also how my skin feels in the morning – no tightness or dullness. It’s definitely a little bit of luxury at your fingertips, and worth investing in if you have the slightest tendency to dry skin. So make sure you get your beauty sleep…what’s not to like?

KORRES Wild Rose Advanced Repair Sleeping Facial RRP: £26.00 and available to buy online from www.MarksandSpencer.com. For more information go to www.korres.com

 

 

Bath-time made easy

beautyspotblogHaving a bath can be an intensely relaxing experience, which can be enjoyed at any age – especially at the end of a long day. Bathing a baby, on the other hand, although fun and rewarding, can also be extremely stressful.  To ensure that as a parent you enjoy this magical experience, and to avoid feeling under pressure when co-ordinating the balancing act that is holding a wet baby and a small towel with only two hands, I strongly advise you to give Cuddledry a go. When I first read about it, I wasn’t sure if it was one of those pointless inventions that although sound great on paper, when it comes to it don’t actually make your life any easier – a chargeable milk frother comes to mind…But trying it out was a revelation: the towel is generous in size and works like an apron (you fasten two poppers behind you neck) that is long enough to fold back on itself and ‘become’ a towel. So when you hold your baby before bathing them you have plenty of fabric to ensure they’re kept warm without their clothes on, and – of course – when you pick them up, you can wrap them up generously and most crucially use both hands to do this is.  So if you’re going to a baby shower any time soon or need to get a baby a new gift, this is something that is both practical and cuddly at the same time. It comes in a number of designs and colour-ways (from leopard print to pale blue and pink) and it’s made of pure unbleached cotton and natural bamboo fibre. It really is silky soft and dries very fast once used. In a word: genius.

For more information visit www.cuddledry.com. Prices start at £29.99.

Relax…it’s only Christmas!

beautyspotThis time of year is filled with social occasions and a busy calendar for us all, so make sure you block out some precious me-time and schedule in some quiet relaxation and replenishing time for yourself. Christmas can be stressful and filled with high expectations, so why not treat yourself in the form of some time out from your busy week and a few simple beauty rituals? A candle-lit bath and a clay mask should leave you feeling relaxed yet invigorated and fresh, ready for the next round of social events!

Neom Organics make my favourite candles, and they have a special limited edition candle as part of their dreamy Christmas selection: Christmas Wish and Perfect Peace (£49.95). Neom have created their 100% natural Neom Christmas Wish™ fragrance, part of their therapeutic Neom Scent To Instantly De-Stress™ range. It includes thirteen pure essential oils, amongst them mandarin, cinnamon and tonka bean. The candle comes in two different sizes, with one and three wicks. They’re long-lasting and work even in large spaces. The scent evokes all the traditions of the Christmas period and helps reduce stress levels, too – and, this year, it’s sprinkled with 18 ct gold, to add even more luxury to the experience! You can also go for Neom Perfect Peace™ , a fragrance that is part of their therapeutic Neom Scent To Make You Happy™ range. It includes twenty-five essential oils including pine, myrrh and lime peel, blended to lift your mood, and helps with anxiety and stress, giving you a sense of calm – plus this year it comes sprinkled with real platinum, for added glamour. Another option is Neom Perfect Peace™ , also part of the therapeutic Neom Scent To Make You Happy™ range. It includes twenty-five essential oils including pine, myrrh and lime peel, blended to lift your mood, and helps with anxiety and stress, giving you a sense of calm – plus this year it comes sprinkled with real platinum, for added glamour.

laiafarrangraves.pngAfter choosing your scent, it’s time to run your bath. I have found some incredible bath salts called Rosemary & Ginger Body Soak (£12.75). This is great for soothing tired muscles, aches and pains. The scent packs a punch and is delicious yet strong; it’s handmade in the UK with pure ingredients – you will find nothing artificial in this attractive aluminium canister, and it’s suitable for every skin type. This aromatic mixture will ease any muscle stiffness or aches: the Epsom salts offer trace elements and help get rid of toxins; the ginger and galbanum relax and warm the muscles. Wintergreen is good for joints, lavender peps you up and calms, and rosemary revitalizes.

beautyspotFinally, for a great face mask. I recommend ARGAN+ LIFT & RENEW CLAY MASK (£8.95) from the ARGAN 5 – ARGAN PLUS PRODUCTS range. It contains an astonishing amount of natural oils – baobab oil, kukui oil, moringa oil and sacha inchi oil, as well as the revitalizing passionflower oil, which is rich in vitamin C and essential fatty acids. There is also shea butter to replenish, moisturize and soften, green clay and kaolin to draw out impurities and, of course, precious Moroccan argan oil. I use this mask once a week. Apply it to clean, dry skin, and rinse off thoroughly with lukewarm water. Your skin will emerge fresh, rested, renewed and nourished, with added elasticity. Fine lines are visibly diminished and your face will feel smooth, clean and soft… you’ll be ready for a beautiful Christmas. So make sure you take some time out to beautify yourself, take a deep breath and enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Full blast volume

LaiafarrangravesNow that summer is most definitely over, your hair may need a little extra pampering – it may have suffered a little more than usual and be in need of a bit of extra TLC after too much sun, chlorine and salt. If your hair is also fine and coloured, all those elements add up to a recipe for disaster. But don’t despair – I have the perfect remedy! If you’re looking for a little extra “oomph” in your hair, but with no heaviness or overpowering fragrances, I found this delightful hair mask. I used it when my hair was not only coloured, but also sun-damaged and in desperate need of a trim – it did the trick and saw me through a challenging time, hair-wise. Pure Volume Masque is a delicious and light – yet wonderfully creamy – preparation that you smooth onto your hair and leave to work its magic after shampooing. It’s a gentle and lightweight treatment for fine hair that adds moisture and nourishes deeply. The result is silky smooth but without weighing your hair down. Vitamin B5 adds volume and vitality, and results are long lasting. Their special Colour Guard Complex protects hair and reduces the loss of colour which comes with washing, heat styling, UV rays and free radicals. It’s produced by Maria Nila in Sweden with 100% vegan ingredients and is sulphate and paraben free. Plus, it smells absolutely divine! You’ll walk around surrounded by a gentle tropical garden scent to ease you gently into autumn.

The Maria Nila Pure Volume Mask is priced at EUR 27. For more information go to Marianila.com.

Holiday body wash

beautyspotblogWhenever I smell coconut, it reminds me of being on holiday and smelling sun tan oil as I approached the beach. It’s such a powerful memory that I can practically feel the heat on my skin! So this morning, when I took a shower with the new Smoothing Coconut Body Wash from Jason I truly felt like I was on holiday. The product is very soft and creamy (it contains Shea butter an is in fact  designed to hydrate the driest of skins), it feels hydrating on application and the smell is…well, it’s just delicious, I can’t think of any other way of describing it!  It’s an deeply nourishing, ultra-moisturizing formula made with botanical cleansers, Shea Butter, unrefined virgin Coconut Oil (rich in nourishing Vitamin E and antioxidant polyphenols) castor oil and orange peel oil, so your skin is bathed with beautiful, skin-healthy nutrients to feel super-soft and smooth all over. You can use this product in the shower or in the bath and all the ingredients are, of course, free of parabens, SLS, petrolatum, synthetic fragrances, artificial colours or phthalates. It’s a real treat for your skin and for all your senses, but be warned: it could make you go onto lastminute.com to check out some summer breaks! The is priced at £9.99887ml (30fl.oz)> For more information go to jasonnaturalcare.co.uk.

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Did you know… Born in 1959, JASON® brand was one of the first to offer personal care products without harsh chemicals. For over 50 years, we have delivered safe, wholesome, no-nonsense products that happen to really work. Our formulas don’t contain petrolatum, sodium lauryl or laureth sulfates (SLS), parabens or phthalates. And we never test on animals. We invite you to try the entire line of safe, effective, body-loving products.

The big Spring cover up

laiafarrangravesWith Spring officially here and the Easter holidays finally behind us, it’s time to look at the latest trends and re-discover a staple garment that never goes out of fashion: the wrap. Despite the potential of looking a bit ‘safe’ and maybe even been classed as being on the boring side, a good, quality wrap in a great colour is a must-have item for your wardrobe, –especially at this time of year: it’s that extra layer of clothing you can take on or off accordingly, with no bulky jacket or jumper to have to carry around. It’s also one of the more versatile garments you will own, as you can wear it like a scarf, like a shawl/cape or you can even tie it up around your waist as seen in Burberry Prorsum‘s Spring 2015 Ready-to-Wear catwalk show. But when it comes to a wrap, you can tell quality straight away, so it really is worth investing in a good one. My fabric of choice is Baby Alpaca, because a part from being luxuriously warm and soft  it’s also water resistant, making it the perfect garment to wear indoors, outdoors and also all year round – whatever the weather! The colours to look out this Spring 2015 are delicate shades of peach, yellow and pink as well as aqua shades, blues and classic greys and taupes – take a look at Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon wearing this cult classic oversized scarf in great on-trend colours…effortlessly chic!

Check out Alpacaguapa‘s latest Baby Alpaca Wraps (£75.00). I think their light blue one is particularly stunning,  maybe because pale blue is one of my all-time favourite colours, but I also love the light grey one as it goes with everything… If you want to see the garments first hand, the next AlpacaGuapa event is in Ascot, on the 17th and 18th of April. Click here to find out about the rest of their events. For more information go to AlpacaGuapa. 100% Baby Alpaca Wraps are priced at £75.00 and are also available online.

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TIME TO SNUGGLE UP!

On this side of the world, as the winter months are setting in the cold weather spells are making us shiver, so what better investment could you possibly make than a cosy blanket?

A blanket couldn’t be more versatile: you can use it to relax at home on the couch or armchair while you read your favourite book or the Sunday papers, you can use it to sleep under on a chilly night (maybe add it to your duvet) or even as a coat, yes you hear me right: just belt it up and create a poncho shape or wear it laiafarrangravesbeautyspotover one shoulder (as seen here on Cara Delevingne at Burberry’s AW 2014 show). This is not only incredibly comfortable and warm, but a super-cool look, which has been spotted amongst celebs including Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Olivia Palermo. I’ve also seen a dark grey blanket worn over a leather jacket and it looked fabulous. But when looking for a blanket, it’s important that you find something that’s light and warm in equal measures. This is where Alpaca would be my choice of fabric: it’s softer and warmer that wool, and more water-resistant than cashmere.

beautyspotblogFor a brand that delivers excellent quality at great prices, check out AlpacaGuapa, a great company which has a very user-friendly website. Check out their Lightweight 100% Baby Alpaca throw It is a really good size (184cm x 140cm) and comes in fantastic colours: blue, green, camel, dark grey, light green, dark grey, pink red and turquoise. I personally love the grey – I know it’s a bit safe but I really do like natural colours, especially in the home (white walls, natural wooden floors and touches of grey), but actually they’re all great shades so you’ll be spoilt for choice…

So, if you’re feeling like treating yourself or a friend to something to beat the January blues look no further…it’s on my wish list!