Scrivner for Men by Jane Scrivner Skincare

Scrivner for Men by Jane Scrivner Skincare

I’ve always been a fan of Jane Scrivner skincare products due to their pure and natural ingredients. When I used them previously, they always left my skin looking healthy and glowing. So when they recently released there the Scrivner for Men complete #5STEPSKINSTRATEGY Kit I immediately gravitated towards it. I am partial to a skincare kit as it makes the whole process of deciding what products to buy more convenient. Also you can  trust the products will work perfectly together in order to give your skin the best results.

The kit comes in a handy canvas bag which makes it easy to store and transport if travelling. In each bag there are five products with easy to follow instructions, so no man has the excuse of not having an effective skincare routine. The products included in the kit are:

Step #1 Skin Clean – Nourish Enrich Cleansing Balm

I love a good cleansing balm and I have previously written a few posts regarding them, however for many cleansing balms are a relatively new concept.  Cleansing balms add a more mindful ritual to your skincare routine, allowing you to take the time to massage the product into the skin. Cleansing balms are a really nourishing way to remove the dirt and grime from the skin whilst maintaining the skins natural integrity.

This balm, like many others has a thick consistency which immediately melts into the skin when applied. After massaging it into the face you simply remove it with a warm soaked mitt (which is also included in the kit) and your face feels cleansed and nurtured. The great thing about this product is that it can be used as a shaving balm either on its own or under your normal shaving foam, hence providing you with an extra layer of protection.

Ingredient Highlights: Organic Jojoba Oil, Rice bran wax, Tocopherol (vitamin E) and nine essential oils including sandalwood, star anise and carrot.

Step #2 Skin Resurface – Daily Resurfacing AHA/BHA Acid Exfoliator

Gone are the days of harsh face scrubs that can lead to irritation and skin-barrier damage. Acid exfoliators are a great way to gently resurface the skin to reveal smoother and clearer skin. I have been using acid exfoliators for a while so it’s fantastic to see one included in this kit and one that is geared towards men.

I found this exfoliator to be gentle with a subtle fragrance and as per instructions, only used it a few times a week before building up to daily use. All that’s required is a drizzle of the product onto a cotton pad, gently wipe it over the face and you’re done, such a simple yet effective step. What makes it more appealing is that it’s 100% natural and organic.

Ingredient highlights: English raw organic apple cider vinegar and numerous acids taken from pineapple, burdock, bilberry, orange, lemon, sugar maple, witch-hazel and white willow.

Step #3 Skin Hydrate – Smoothing Hyaluronic Gel

I don’t know about you but since working indoors my skin has been so dry. I often use hyaluronic serums as an extra step in my skincare routine, so I was very happy to see this gel which includes Hyaluronic acid as one of its main ingredients. Hyaluronic acid holds a thousand times its weight in water and acts like a sponge by attracting moisture to boost hydration on the surface of the skin.

Upon application, this clear gel gave my skin an immediate refreshing sensation and sunk immediately into the skin without that tacky or sticky feeling that most gels can leave. After using this product my skin felt plump and dewy.

Ingredient highlights: Plant extracted bio-fermented Hyaluronic Acid, Spilanthes Acmella (a natural muscle relaxant), organic aloe vera, white willow and frankincense oil.

Step #4 Skin Defence – Calm Nourish Enrich Face Oil

Jane Scrivner is known for sourcing the best raw and natural oils from around the globe, so I am very happy to see a face oil in this collection. Only a single application onto the fingers is needed. As you massage it into the face you can smell all the wonderful natural ingredients, star anise and sandalwood being the most prominent for me.

The oil sinks into the skin and you are left with this healthy and nourished glow almost as if you have had a restful nights sleep. What is great about this product is that you can use it as a beard or moustache oil too, so you are getting two products in one.

Ingredient Highlights: Organic Jojoba Oil, Organic Oat Oil, Tigernut Oil and a blend of nine essential oils.

Step #5 Skin Protect – Oat Argan Moisturising Cream

For the last step of the skincare routine, there is this beautiful moisturising cream that seals in all of your previous steps whilst providing a protective barrier to environmental irritants. This cream includes Argan Kernel and Oat Kernel oils along with an array of other protective and nourishing ingredients.

What I love about the product is that natural uplifting fragrance but also the fact that even though there is an abundance of oily ingredients,  it doesn’t leave your skin shiny or greasy looking.

Ingredient highlights: Organic Oat Kernel Oil, Organic Argan Kernel Oil, Colloidal Oatmeal, Betulenic Acid, Aloe Vera and nine essential oils.

I have really enjoyed using these products and wouldn’t hesitate in recommending them. Although you can buy the products individually, I feel the kit provides everything you need for a perfect and easy to use skincare routine. At a time when we all need that extra dose of self-care these products and the good quality ingredients really do feel like having your very own nurturing facial every day.

Head to my IGTV where I show you how I use the products.

Head to Janescrivner.com for up to date prices and more information.

James Read Tan – Self Tanning

James Read Tan – Self Tanning

Let’s face it we all love a good tan, it makes us feel and look healthy. After years of burning my skin in the name of vanity and with all the recent evidence of how bad sunbeds and sunbathing is, I decided enough is enough. I am now an avid user of self-tanning products and after trailing through different brands that never really provided the results I wanted, I finally came across James Read Tan who combines self-tanning with luxury skincare. Here are my top favourite products;

Sleep Mask Face Retinol

The first product I fell in love with and one that has taken the world by storm is the gradual tanner sleep mask. When using tanning products on my face I always thought I was missing out on my normal skincare and other self-tanners left my face dry and tight. James Read has cleverly included key skincare ingredients in this product including encapsulated Retinol, hyaluronic acid. Along with other skin-loving ingredients, this combination helps with the reduction in the signs of fatigue, dark circles and a dull complexion, so your skin isn’t missing out on anything at all.

The texture of this product is more serum-like and it absorbs easily into my skin. As with all tanning products, I exfoliate my face prior to applying this face mask so that it goes on evenly. As it is a gradual tanner, I can control the amount I use throughout the week to get the desired level of colour I want.

H20 Tan Drops

If you are not a fan of using retinol products and again you don’t want to skip your usual skincare routine then this product is fantastic. I apply this in the evenings when I don’t use the sleep mask and it is so convenient to use. All I do is add a few drops (this varies depending on the level of colour I want) into my normal moisturiser and it’s as simple as that.

The ingredients do not interact with your moisturiser in any way, so you can relax in the knowledge that you will be getting a great tan while still benefiting from your usual skincare.

The Glow 1 hour Face & Body

When I am in a hurry or life has been so busy that I have forgotten to tan throughout the week, this is the perfect last-minute product. Formulated with aloe vera, hyaluronic acid and jojoba seed oil, you are yet again getting the benefits of luxury ingredients whilst obtaining a tan. All you do is apply using a mitt and within 30 minutes you can start to see the glow appearing.

As I have pale skin I only need to keep this product on for around 45 minutes before washing it off and afterwards, I am left with a healthy golden glow. This is convenient to use before a night out or an event and doesn’t give off that undesirable fake tan aroma.

Hydra Tan Mist – for Men

Even though James Read products are unisex this Hydra Tan Mist with its chic black packaging and fresh fig and ginger fragrance has been tailored towards men. This mist is perfect for the man who is on the go as it is quick to use and very fast-drying. As it is colourless it also takes out the worry of any colour appearing on your fresh new shirt. It also calms and hydrates after shaving which is an added bonus. As with all the other products it features Tantone Technology which ensures the most natural result for your skin tone.

I sometimes spray this over my normal moisturiser throughout the day for an extra boost of hydration, knowing that I will also get a hint of colour at the same time. This is a multi-tasking and convenient product and one that should be in every guy’s toiletry case.

If you want to know more about the man behind the tan, head to my ‘chats with’ section where I chat to James Read about his life, career and his renowned self-tanning brand.

Aesthetica Edinburgh – Black Tie Facial

Aesthetica Edinburgh – Black Tie Facial

Men, let’s admit it, previously we have often overlooked the importance of good skincare. Thankfully nowadays we are beginning to see an increase in men who genuinely take an interest in this area and more and more clinics around the country are creating treatments geared towards the male client. I recently visited Aesthetica in Edinburgh to see what treatments they have to offer for men’s skincare.

Aesthetica, is an aesthetic medicine, cosmetic surgery and beauty therapy clinic lead by founders Dr Liliana Laird and Jacque Fenner. It is located in the west end of Edinburgh and situated in a quant basement setting underneath the streets of New Town. On entering, the clinic opens up into numerous different rooms and provides a relaxed and tranquil space.

The clinic has recently launched their new Man Plan, a dedicated webpage detailing information and the treatments to suit all men’s aesthetic needs. From skin peels, anti-wrinkle injections and mole removals, there are lots of treatments available which you can view here. If you are a tad dubious about what treatment to choose from or you require further information, the clinic offers complimentary consultations for all procedures.

My skin at this time of the year, always feels a little lack-lustre, so I opted for their Black Tie Facial. This 60 minute bespoke facial uses a combination of Medik8 and ZO Skin Health products and aims to nourish, hydrate and invigorate the skin. This is perfect for an instant skin pick me up, especially during these cold winter months.

I was treated by the lovely Emma Smillie who is one of the Clinic’s Aesthetic Practitioner. Emma who has worked within the industry since 2005 has travelled the world working in various areas gathering knowledge along the way.  You could tell how passionate she was the minute I walked through the door. She described the Black Tie Facial as “suitable for all skin types and excellent for a range of concerns as it can be completely tailored to suit each individual”.

After a quick questionnaire and consultation with my therapist I was ready to experience the Black Tie Facial.

The procedure:

Cleanse – My face was cleansed using Medik8’s Surface Radiance Cleanser. I use this product at home and absolutely love it. Not only does it contain numerous acids to help with tone and textural issues, it also contains Mangosteen and Raspberry which are renowned for their anti-oxidant protection properties.

Exfoliate – I love a good exfoliation and this part of the process provided exactly that. ZO Skin Health Exfoliating Polish was gently massaged into my face, stimulating the skin and removing dead skin cells. The texture was quite granular and left my face feeling invigorated and cleansed.

PeelZO Skin Health Peel Prep was applied to my skin to remove excess surface oil so that the subsequent peel could be applied evenly. ZO Skin Health Stimulator was then applied to my face for a few minutes. This peel contains a trio of AHA: Citric, Lactic and Glycolic to aid cell turn over and reveal a radiant complexion. On application, there was a slight tingle but this soon subsided and the whole process was comfortable and relaxing.

Neutralise – In order for the deactivate the peel, ZO Skin Health Neutraliser was applied to my face.

Mask & Massage – A cooling ZO Skin Health Brightening Sheet Masque was then laid on my face. Its ingredients of Aloe Vera and Green Tea help to soothe and hydrate the skin and brighten up the complexion.

While the masque got to work, I was also treated to a fantastic shoulder massage.

LED Light Therapy – I have had this a few times and absolutely love it and it is said to have many benefits! The Red Light is said to stimulate collagen and elastin, DNA Synthesis, boost fibroblasts growth and strengthen the skin.

The Blue light has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory benefits, helping reduce any redness after the treatment. I was given 10 minutes of the red light and 5 minutes of the blue along with a relaxing head massage.

Hydrate – As the last step, Medik8’s Post Treatment Moisturiser and a broad spectrum SPF was applied to my face.

I found my visit to Aesthetica both relaxing and informative. Emma was able to guide me through each of the steps and explain the different ingredients and how they worked to benefit the skin. The inclusion of the shoulder and scalp massages were an added bonus and truly made the whole process relaxing. Not only was my skin left glowing and supple but I also felt extremely de-stressed and invigorated. What surprised me was that there was no redness or skin irritation after the peel, so with no downtime, this is a perfect treatment before an important event or occasion.

Black tie facial – £80

Aesthetica Edinburgh

3A-4B Randolph Place

Edinburgh

EH3 7TQ

0131 281 1251

Enquiries@aestheticaedinburgh.com

 

Christmas Gift Guide 2019 – Skincare Stocking Fillers for Men

Christmas Gift Guide 2019 – Skincare Stocking Fillers for Men

I don’t know about you but when it comes to finding gifts for men I used to find it very difficult to choose. Thankfully, men have now become much more aware of how important skincare is and there are lots of products out there that make the perfect skincare stocking filler.

HOUSE 99 by David Beckham 

Face Moisturiser Greater Look – This multi-effect formula helps hydrate the skin and reduce shine whilst protecting it from pollution. I especially love how even though it has lightweight texture it still manages to keep the skin moisturised throughout the day. 75ml – £22.00 at house99.co.uk

Image by House 99

 

Medik8 For Men 

CSA Philosophy Kit Essential Edition – Renowned award-winning indie skincare brand Medik8 have recently launched this skincare kit for men which contains everything you need for younger-looking radiant skin. The kit contains their surface radiant cleanser, daily radiance Vitamin C with SPF and Night Ritual Vitamin A, a perfect combination that is effective yet easy to use. £99.00 at medik8.com

Creme Du Loch 

Age-defying Daily Moisturiser – With a unique blend of minerals, anti-oxidants and vitamins, this cruelty free and vegan friendly moisturiser makes the perfect gift.  The star ingredient is Scottish Kelp which is a natural superfood for the skin, tackling any dryness, breakouts, fine lines and wrinkles. The texture appears light and airy, but on application the skin feels extremely hydrated and healthy and its cucumber fragrance appeals to all sexes. 50ml – £49.00 at cremeduloch.com

Acqua Di Parma – Barbiere Range 

Soft Shaving Cream  – If your father prefers the traditional method of shaving with a brush then the soft shaving cream is the perfect choice. This rich cream is formulated with pomegranate seed oil, lemon oil, extract of basil and hyaluronic acid which helps prevent irritation and reddening.125ml – £47.00 at acquadiparma.com

 Shaving Gel – This shaving gel is for those men who favour a quicker shave without the irritation. This luxurious gel immediately transforms into a refreshing and creamy lather for an ultra-comfortable shave. 150ml – £31.00 at acquadiparma.com

Otis Skincare 

Hydrating Daily Moisturiser – Not only does this moisturiser hydrate and nourish with Hyaluronic acid, Jojoba oil and Vitamin E, it is also packed with an anti-aging peptide called Matrixl.  This active ingredient is said to stimulate collagen production in turn improving elasticity and helping to smooth those pesky little lines. I have previously spoke about this brand before on my blog which you can read here. 75ml – £47.00 at otiskincare.com

Kennedy & Co by Darren Kennedy

Purifying Peat Face Scrub – this deep cleansing and exfoliant scrub infused with the power of peat is a fantastic addition to any mans skin care regime. It unclogs looks, removed dead skin sells and wakes up the skin leaving it refreshed and renewed. €12.95 from kennedycogrooming.com

Thank you for reading. If your interested in more gift ideas, head to my other Christmas Gift Guides for unisex fragrances and hotel stays.

Frances Prescott – Multi-Tasking Skincare

Frances Prescott – Multi-Tasking Skincare

I don’t know about you but sometimes I feel like life is going a hundred miles an hour. I am always on the lookout for time-saving tips and products that I can use in order to utilise my time. I recently discovered two skincare products that do exactly that; Tri-Balm and Tri-Spritz from Frances Prescott. Frances Prescott is a facialist and makeup artist within the film and fashion industry and after many years in this illustrious career, Frances wanted to create a product that would simplify everyone’s skincare routine. Joining forces with an international businesswoman and sister Pauline Prescott, they sought out to create a luxurious yet affordable multi-functional and natural product.  It was then Tri-Balm was born and before long their slick contemporary packaging started to appear all over social media (where it caught my attention) and into luxurious stores such as Liberty’s in London.

Tri-Balm

As its name suggests, Tri-Balm tackles three skincare tasks all in one product; cleansing, exfoliating and moisturising. The first thing that caught my eye was its small sleek packaging where with a simple twist reveals the beautiful ingredients inside. The balm comes in a solid form and as someone who loves to travel it’s the perfect product to throw into my toiletry case. Personally, knowing that I have just one product to cover a multitude of tasks and one that won’t spill in my bag is a fantastic selling point. 

On application its stunning fragrance was a pleasant surprise, this beautiful scent of essential oils such as Mandarin and Geranium exude a sense of calm. These are not only great for the skin but their scents combine to create a perfect uplifting aroma which immediately relaxes the senses. There are an abundance of skin-nourishing ingredients including Pumpkin Enzyme, English Oil Blend, Sunflower Oil, Wheatgerm Oil, Rice Bran Oil, Vitamin E, Carrot Tissue Oil, and Sweet almond Oil. This combination tackles issues in regard to skin tone and texture, sun and environmental damage and anti-ageing. Hyaluronic acid is also included which leaves the skin feeling plump, supple and moisturised and is great for boosting collagen in the skin.

The product can be applied directly onto the face or with your fingertips. I tend to use both techniques as my stubble area tends to collect too much of the product. With that in mind, I use my fingers over my stubble area and then apply it directly to the upper area of the face. Massaging the product onto my dry skin I take a moment to really breathe in and absorb all the aromas. Its texture is smooth and nurturing as it melts into the skin removing any impurities along the way. After I have fully massaged the balm I add a little water to the face and massage further, the product then turns into a milky residue which I then remove with a warm cloth.  For an extra dose of hydration and exfoliation I keep the product on the skin for 5-10 minutes,. This is fantastic during the winter months when the cold weather and indoor heating dries out my skin.

Tri-Spritz

The latest product to be released is Tri-Spritz, a powerful facial mist that also adheres to the three in one approach. This product aims to repair, condition and protect the skin and of course work in harmony with the Tri-Balm. I have always been a huge fan of facial mists and often keep one on my desk at work for when my skin feels dry due to air conditioning or heating. Yet again this product has such a wonderful fragrance due to the addition of Orange Blossom Water, Rose Water and Verbena Extract which is also known for their relaxing and calming properties.

It may just look like a simple facial mist but this product is packed full of skin-loving ingredients for cellular repair and protection against pollution.  Its first notable ingredient is Chuffa Milk which is said to be one of the oldest cultivated plants. It not only helps protect against free radical damage but its also rich in fatty acids helping to moisturise the skin. Coconut water provides additional hydrating properties while Algae Extract and Natural Cellulose provide a protective shield for the skin, protecting it against pollution and environmental irritants.

This product has been developed to used in tandem with Tri-balm. After rinsing the balm and applying any additional products that I use, I then apply the mist all over the face. The aroma is truly relaxing and the immediate boost of hydration is both cooling and comforting, providing a healthy glow to my skin. Staying in a busy city I often worry about what my skin is exposed to during the day but the spritz protective layer gives me the confidence to go out knowing that it is fully guarded against any environmental damage. Additionally, I often use the spray during the day as an added layer of hydration or to energise the skin before an event. As if there weren’t enough benefits of this product, it also sets your make up in place, keeping it in fantastic condition until the end of the day.

Watch my videos over on IGTV where I show you how I use the products to keep my skin in great condition. Check out my other post where I chat to Frances Prescott herself and find out more about the brand and products.

Head to francesprescott.com to check out my guest blog on my favourite winter skincare products.

* gifted

Kiehl’s Skincare – Blu Blazer Guy’s Top 5

Kiehl’s Skincare – Blu Blazer Guy’s Top 5

Founded in 1851, and subsequently bought by L’Oreal in 2000 Kiehl’s Skincare has travelled from its original roots in New York to 177 stores around the world.

It wasn’t until 2012 when Edinburgh’s branch opened up on the prestigious George street that I discovered the world of Kiehl’s Skincare and ever since then I have been hooked on their scientifically formulated products.

If you have a skincare concern, Kiehl’s seem to always have a solution and a visit to their store will have you sorted in no time. I always love the laid back, friendly and professional staff who go out there way to find you the perfect products. I have been recently using numerous products from the range and thought I would give you my top Blu Blazer Guy picks;

 

Hydro-plumping Re-Texturising Serum Concentrate

What does it do: Plumps skin, smooths the appearance of fine lines, improves the texture of the skin and addresses age-related dehydration.

Why do I like it: When applying this product on my skin I get the same feeling when I am extremely thirsty and drink a large glass of cold water. It literally makes me say “ahhhhh” as it soaks into the face, quenching my parched skin and instantly refreshing it. I often use this when I haven’t had a lot of sleep and my skin is lacking in lustre. A small amount of this beautifully textured serum provides an instant wakeup effect.

 

Powerful-Strength Line-Reducing Concentrate with 12.5% Vitamin C and Hyaluronic Acid.

What does it do: The original formula (which was fantastic in its own right) has now been upgraded with even more vitamin C and hyaluronic acid. This combined formula helps to reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles and improve texture.

Why do I like it? I’m a huge fan of using Vitamin C in my skincare regime, so I am very happy that more of this ingredient has been incorporated into this product. On the application there is a slight tingle to the skin (which is often the case with Vitamin C products) however this soon subsides. When I use this product I feel it gives my skin an immediate smoothing effect and provides a lovely healthy glow. It isn’t particularly moisturising for my skin though, so I like to use this under another moisturiser for extra suppleness.

 

Super Multi-Corrective Cream.

What does it do: targets all visible signs of ageing. This multi-purpose cream is formulated with Jasmonic Acid, Hyaluronic Acid and Beech Tree Extract making wrinkles appear smoother, skin feeling firmer and skin texture looking more refined.

Why do I like it: This cream is a great all in one product to help with the signs of ageing. I particularly love its light texture that absorbs fantastically into the skin. It has often been my experience that light textured creams do not give me the moisturisation I need to last throughout the day but this product seems to keep my skin feeling supple and hydrated. I also use a facial massager when applying this product to help it get deeper into the skin and it makes my face look noticeably lifted.

 

Youth Dose Eye Treatment

What does it do: It hydrates the eye area targeting fine lines and eye bags and instantly smoothes and brightens whilst helping to visibly improve the look of dark circles. It includes the added benefits of pro-retinol, Vitamin C and Grape seed extract.

Why do I like it: I often find eye creams too thick and they seem to lie on top of the skin, however, this cream has a lightweight texture and sinks into my eye area really well. There is an instant fresh feeling which lasts throughout the day. I especially love the addition of vitamin C and pro-retinol which helps with the fine lines I have.

 

Ultra Light Daily UV Defense Aqua Gel SPF 50

What does it do: Protects skin against the sun and pollution.

Why do I like it: For the past few years I’ve begun to understand the importance of protecting my skin from the sun so I’ve stayed away from sunbeds and also avoided sunbathing on holiday. The risks of skin cancer and the damage it does to skin is not worth the short term bronzed effect. Even staying in Scotland it’s important to wear an SPF on a daily basis. This one is particularly good as its non-comedogenic so absorbs into the skin without leaving a greasy residue or shininess. I apply this product after my toner and moisturising cream and it makes me feel so happy knowing that I can go out and my skin is protected from damaging UV rays and harmful pollution.

Lumen Vitae – Skincare

Lumen Vitae – Skincare

Lumen Vitae is a beautiful range of skincare products lovingly created by brother and sister duo Coline and Raphaël Giroud. After much research, they have cleverly created a range of  highly effective products that not only respect the health of your skin but also the environment. Their packaging uses as little plastic as possible, the boxes are recyclable and the ingredients are both natural and ethically sourced.

I have been trialling four products in the range; Radiant glow, Ray of Light, Primal Light and Moonlight. As you can see from the name of the brand and each of the products, they are very much inspired by light. The range of products has been specifically created to give your skin a lovely healthy glow.

Radiant Glow 

Radiant Glow is an illuminating serum filled with Vitamin C which you all know is one of my favourite ingredients. In addition to this, it also contains pomegranate stem cells which work alongside Vitamin C to increase that healthy glow.

The serum also helps with an array of other issues such as pores, blemishes and scars on the skin; a fantastic all-encompassing start to this Skincare regime. I specifically enjoyed its light velvety texture that sank beautifully into my skin. Without even applying the other products, this serum alone transformed my skin, giving it an immediate healthy-looking glow.

Ray of Light

Ray of Light (cue Madonna song) is Lumen Vitae’s day cream and is designed to be used over the Radiant Glow serum. This cream has a luxuriously rich texture but doesn’t leave any oily greasy residue on the skin. Ray of Light is filled with brown and red algae’s which has anti-ageing benefits that improve the elasticity of the skin and help with collagen production.

Skincare superstar hyaluronic acid is also included due to its moisture maintaining properties. This is fantastic if you are suffering from dehydrated skin, especially for those who are working in a busy city. In addition to this, the cream also contains a multitude of caring natural oils which combine to create a most beautiful scent.

Primal Light 

Primal Light is their global eye contour treatment. I don’t know about you but this is one area that I suffer from the most. My busy lifestyle and poor sleep can sometimes causes me to have puffy eyes and dark circles, this formulation has been created to counteract these issues.

It also contains ingredients to stimulate collagen production, so helps with ageing issues such as fine line and wrinkles. Its soothing texture was immediately cooling on my skin and continued to keep my under eye area moisturised throughout the day.

Moonlight 

Moonlight is the aptly named night cream which contains a high level of glycolic acid. Glycolic acid is a great ingredient that lightly exfoliates the skin, removing any dead skin cells to reveal a fresh and radiant appearance.

This product has a thick and luxurious texture and really feels like you are giving your skin a treat before bed.

I caught up with Skincare enthusiasts and creators of Lumen Vitae, Coline and Raphaël, to find out more about the brand.

What motivated you to create a range of beauty products? 

Since our teenage years, we tried many different skincare products, without ever being completely satisfied. After a long chat with our family, sharing our own experiences, the idea of creating our very own skincare range popped up in our minds!

What inspired the name Lumen Vitae and the individual names for each of the products?

Both terms are Latin, Lumen means Light and Vitae is Life.  Lumen Vitae is literally the light of life, the light that makes us alive. So when we designed Lumen Vitae skincare, we thought about products that would enlighten life with a light of positivity and a range that would take care of everyone’s skin. For each product, we thought about powerful names that related to light.

From fruition to completion how difficult was it to have a range of products that you were entirely happy with?

We had to determine what we wanted for our products in terms of results AND also what we didn’t want. We gained lots of inspiration from many successful brands that achieved great results but most of them had a detrimental impact on our health and/or our planet.

So with that in mind, we decided exactly what we wanted in our formulas and then worked with a Pharmaceutical doctor, Veronique, to find out what was achievable. When buying specific ingredients, for example, Chlorella, there is a wide variety to choose from. Some Chlorella contains different preservatives, some use Parabens but we made sure that we picked one that was Ecocert certified and Cosmos approved.

In Europe, there are very strict tests and rules that our products have to abide, each product was subjected to a range of mandatory tests. After 4/5 prototypes (depending on the products), we finally managed to come up with products that were non-toxic, well-preserved and that provided outstanding results!

What makes Lumen Vitae stand out from other products out there?

We carefully designed each of our products with the help of Veronique. After thoroughly handpicking each ingredient, we made sure that we designed products that are highly effective whilst respecting our health and our beautiful planet. Our true value resides in all the love and care we put into our products.

Are there any plans to expand on the range?

Our next step is to design a cleanser that would fit into our Protocol.

Head to lumen-vitae-skincare.com for more information or to buy their fantastic range of products.

Emma Hardie Skincare

Emma Hardie Skincare

Renowned facialist, Emma Hardie is well known for her revolutionary approach to facials due to the specialised lifting and sculpting massage technique she uses. This became so popular that she naturally created a range of products that reflected her holistic approach to skincare. After lots of research, Emma Hardie skincare was born and it has become a prominent name in the world of skincare. The brand truly takes prides in creating products using a range of cruelty-free and natural ingredients. 

The launch of its first product, Moringa Cleansing Balm in 2009 became an instant success, gaining precedence and winning countless awards. Although the range has grown dramatically it has never lost its core value of producing products using only natural botanicals. Each well crafted product is proudly made in Britain, containing no synthetic formulations and crammed full of natural power-packed botanical ingredients. 

The star ingredient of the Emma Hardie Skincare range is called Moringa, a plant that has been nicknamed ‘the miracle tree’. Every part of the plant can be used for the skin, hair and body and is  said to be one of the most anti-oxidant plants in the world, helping with purifying the skin and promoting collagen. 

I first discovered Emma Hardie three years ago when I purchased the Moringa Cleansing Balm and  my only regret was that I wished to have discovered it sooner. This year, Emma Hardie skincare is celebrating its 10 year anniversary and I thought it would be great to highlight some of the Emma Hardie Skincare products I have been using.

Moringa Cleansing Balm

This cleansing balm was Emma Hardie inaugural skincare range product and is one that has really changed the way I think about cleansing. It has transformed my routine from a quick wash to a really nurturing and relaxing regime. The balm contains the skin loving ingredients of Moringa Seed extract, Wild Sea Fennel, Vitamin E and essential oils of Orange, Neroli, Mandarin, Jasmine and Rose. The great thing about this product is that you only need a small amount, so it really does go a long way. 

Using a hazelnut size piece of the balm you massage the product all over the face, it can even be used over the eyes. The first thing you notice is the beautiful fragrant smell produced by the natural essential oils which I find truly uplifting. Once fully massaged, you then apply water to the face and the oil transforms into a gorgeous milky texture. Supplied with The Moringa Balm is Dual-Action Cleansing Cloth, with a gentle microfibre side and an exfoliating muslin side. The gentle microfibre is used to remove the product from the skin and the muslin polishes the skin to give it that extra exfoliation. The balm can also be used on the lips, cuticles, to treat dry skin patches over the body as well as a face mask

Previous cleansers used to make my skin feel tight and dry but The Moringa Balm really nurtures my skin and doesn’t strip it of any moisture. My skin is always left feeling smooth, supple and glowing after every use.

Emma Hardie has released a fantastic 10th anniversary limited edition 200ml jar with separate container of Rosehip seeds. These can be blended with the Moringa Balm to create an effective exfoliating treatment. I absolutely love this idea as yet again it adds another dimension to product. Not only does this leave my skin with a natural glow, it really helps to prepare my skin for the other products. 

Exfoliating Brightening Tonic 

The new addition to the Emma Hardie Skincare family is the Exfoliating Brightening Tonic. Unlike some exfoliating toners, this product is gentle enough to be used morning and evening. It helps to brighten and even the skin tone and texture as well as improving skin clarity and increasing elasticity. The key ingredients in this fantastic tonic are Pomegranate enzymes, Aloe Vera, Nettle extract and the intriguing yet strange sounding Sytenol A and Tego Cosmo C250. The Pomegranate enzymes act as a gentle exfoliant and remove trapped bacteria and dead skin cells. The Aloe Vera soothes and hydrates while the Nettle extract helps to tone and tighten the pores. Sytenol A is a natural alternative to retinol offering similar benefits and Tego Cosmo C250 is a natural ingredient that helps brighten, tone and clarify the skin. 

I only recently started using this product in place of my normal toner and I must say I was immediately impressed. My previous toner almost felt as if it was stripping the skin and making it feel tight and uncomfortable where this product has the opposite effect. It was as If I had moisturised my skin because it felt supple and smooth. Most importantly, I love the fact that I can use it both morning and night without it being harsh on my skin. 

Moisture Boost Vitamin C Cream

I am a huge believer in using Vitamin C in my skincare regime. I hate to admit it but I was an avid user of the sunbed, something which I wish I could go back and change. Due to this, I am now starting to get some pigmentation on my skin and Vitamin C is a great ingredient to help with this. This cream is like a little pot of gold as it not only contains Vitamin C but also a pure blend of Vitamin B3 hence helping to increase collagen and brightening up the skin. Red Algae extract is also used which has a reversing effect on UV damage. There is also the added benefits of Pumpkin enzymes, Shea Butter and Grapeseed Oil which can help with cellular renewal and regeneration of the skin. 

I use this product as my day time cream together with the brightening tonic. The texture of the cream is thick and luxurious which melts into the skin upon application and doesn’t leave any shiny residue; just a healthy looking glow. I especially admire the fragrance which is invigorating and citrus like. 

Emma Hardie’s Skincare range has a prominent place on my bathroom shelf as I have been extremely impressed with the products that I have used so far. Not only do I adore the packaging, I especially love the fragrance of the products and their use of natural ingredients. My personal preference is definitely the cleansing balm, it’s a true all encompassing product that genuinely works and takes care of my skin and I can’t wait to see what new products Emma Hardie has in store. Check out my latest IGTV video where I talk about the products and show you how I use them.

Products;

Moringa Cleansing Balm 100ml – £47
Moringa Cleansing Balm 200ml inc Rosehip Seeds – £68
Exfoliating Brightening Tonic 100ml – £28
Moisture Boost Vitamin C Cream – £49

 

 

The Facial Spa – Ultimate Fusion Facials

The Facial Spa – Ultimate Fusion Facials

Situated in the quaint area of Bruntsfield in Edinburgh is the impressive Soprano Ice. Soprano Ice a laser and aesthetic clinic designed to provide men and woman with a range of beauty treatments in a professional and modern environment. In 2018 their newest addition; The Facial Spa Edinburgh, opened  to provide an array of deluxe facials all designed to take care of specific modern-day skin concerns. I recently visited The Facial Spa on a couple of occasions to try their renowned ultimate fusion facial experiences which can be tailored to suit numerous skin types and concerns.

The Facial Spa’s luxurious design has been cleverly created to instil a tranquil ambience, providing a calming space where you can relax and enjoy your facial and truly escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. What I love about this establishment is that the interior doesn’t exude the look of a cold sterile clinical environment but instead conveys a more upscale comfortable unisex vibe. A row of masculine Belmont leather seats contrast perfectly against the floral background of the wallpaper, all set off with brushed brass mirrors and shelving. 

For the facials I experienced two different versions, each incorporating the highly effective oxygen boost, the Microdermabrasion Fusion Facial and Bespoke Oxygen Boost Facial.  

 Microdermabrasion Fusion Facial

 Skin cleanse

Sitting back on the comfortable chair the first step was to deep cleanse the skin. This helps to remove skin impurities, dirt and oil from the surface of the face in preparation for the treatment. The eye area is washed and the face is double cleansed with a gentle cleanser. The Facial Spa use a range of their own products as well as Intraceuticals.  

Double Cleanse

 Microdermabrasion

 The therapist uses a specialised machine that glides over the face, the attachment fires fine crystals which exfoliate the skin and a vacuum lifts the dead skin cells from the surface.  This process is fantastic for decongesting the skin and targeting fine lines and blemishes. I really enjoyed this part of the treatment as it felt like my skin was being exfoliated thoroughly.  The sensation is quite like gentle sandpaper caressing the skin and I truly felt a difference to the texture of my skin as this part of the treatment came to an end. 

Microdermabrasion

 Oxygen Boost

 Oxygen molecules are pumped into the skin using a specialised device along with a specific serum. As the highly concentrated oxygen molecules are sprayed, it increases oxygen levels on the epidermis which is said to plump up the skin and promote collagen production. For my skin, the Intraceuticals Rejuvenate serum was used which contained a cocktail of vitamins and antioxidants to lift, tone and hydrate.

Oxygen Boost

This part of the treatment was extremely invigorating and I really enjoyed the immediate refreshing sensation on my skin. My skin felt plumped and the results were evident straight away. One of the many benefits of this treatment is that you are able to apply the oxygen near the eyes, so your whole face is able to benefit.

Light therapy

An LED facial mask which emits a red light from its interior along with protective eye coverings was then placed on my face. Red light therapy is used to activate collagen production and reduce signs of ageing and imperfections. Although the mask looks very daunting,it’s actually very comfortable and only radiates a slight warming sensation. As the mask is wore for a few minutes, the therapist indulged me in a hand massage, hence adding to the relaxed sensation that this establishment exudes.

LED Light Therapy

 Facial massage

The final step to the treatment was a facial massage and an application of Intraceutical products. Rejuvenate Intraceuticals 1,2,3 system products were applied to my face. The serum and hydration gel hydrates the skin and provides a potent mix of anti-ageing ingredients and the moisture binding cream helping the skin retain moisture throughout the day. 

Bespoke Oxygen Boost Facial

If you opt for the bespoke Oxygen Boost Facial you can experience all of the above minus the microdermabrasion. Instead you are treated to one of The Facial Spa’s peels containing glycolic and lactic acid. These combined acids gently exfoliate the skin and remove any impurities and dead skin cells. There is a slight tingling sensation at first which is completely normal and soon subsides. The skin is left bright, clear and refreshed.

Post Treatment Glow

 Do the facials get the Blublazerguy approval?

Absolutely! If you are looking for a relaxing facial that has immediate results with no downtime then these are perfect for you. Although both facials were very enjoyable I did prefer the microdermabrasion, perhaps this was due to the fact that it was my first one but I also felt this had a more thorough effect and left my skin glowing and healthy-looking. I especially loved the incorporation of the oxygen boost, it really added an invigorating step to the whole process that injected some life into my dull and tired skin.

Debbie Stewart, Owner of Soprano Ice.

The staff were extremely friendly and knowledgeable and made me feel comfortable from the moment I walked into the premises. The location of the clinic is an added bonus, allowing you to pop in for a facial, have some lunch and wander around the range of boutique stores.

 Cost: 

Microdermabrasion Fusion Facial – £110
Bespoke Oxygen Boost Facial (Inc Peel) – £90
Bespoke Oxygen Boost Facial (Exc Peel) – £75

Location:
109/111 Bruntsfield Place,
Edinburgh
EH10, 4EQ
0131 229 6688
info@sopranoiceedinburgh.com

 

Carbon Laser Peel – Dr Nestor Medical & Cosmetic Centre

Carbon Laser Peel – Dr Nestor Medical & Cosmetic Centre

When it comes to facials, the words ‘laser’ and ‘peel’ in the same sentence seem to conjure up a range of dubious connotations. I was both hesitant and intrigued when I was recently asked by Dr Nestor to try their new Carbon Laser Peel in Edinburgh. I hadn’t heard of this type of facial before so I started to do my research. I found out that this type of treatment is actually used by numerous celebrities to achieve a fresh and glowing complexion before events. Due to this, it is also known as “The Hollywood Peel”. So I thought to myself, if the stars are using it before red carpet events, then surely Blu Blazer Guy can use it?

I have spoken previously about the fantastically renowned Dr Nestor Medical & Cosmetic Centre in my last post, so no matter what my reservations were, I knew I was in good hands. I signed up for three treatments which is the recommended amount to see optimal results. 

Prior to my first treatment, I sat down with the very talented Skin Therapist Helen Cowan, who explained the process in more detail. As I was a little unsure  of what to expect, Helen took me through the sensations and sounds that I would feel during the treatment. This immediately made me feel more at ease and dispelled any doubts and anxiety that I had.

Helen Cowan, Skin Specialist

In a nutshell

Carbon paste is applied to the skin which penetrates deep into the pores absorbing any excess oils, impurities and dead skin cells. A laser which is highly attracted to the carbon particles is used to blast them away from the skin, hence removing any of the contaminants that the paste lifted from the pores. The treatment is very exfoliating, renewing and is fantastic for stimulating collagen production which in turn helps with fine lines, pigmentation and skin firmness.

The Treatment

In the very chic surroundings of the clinic, I lay back in the chair whilst my skin was cleansed using an alcoholic solution ensuring that any products I had used throughout the day were removed. A thick carbon paste was then applied to my entire face and left to dry into the skin. Lastly eye guards were placed to shield my eyes against the laser.

Luckily for me, Helen had given me prior warning regarding the loud sound of the laser as it passed over the skin, so after a few moments, I soon forgot about it. The laser is highly attracted to the carbon particles, therefore as it moved around my face it began to blast away the carbon paste sending a burning smell into the air. This was a normal part of the process and strangely therapeutic. Helen carefully advised that the laser can be a tad uncomfortable around the more sensitive areas of the face, however I felt nothing but a warming tingle on the skin.

After around ten minutes the whole procedure was complete and any excess carbon was cleansed from my skin. The therapist used a combination of two Zo Skin Health products after the treatment. These consisted of growth factor serum to reduce inflammation and stimulate collagen and Daily Power Defence which includes retinol, enzymes and antioxidants.

The Results

Following my first session, I definitely felt my skin was thoroughly refreshed and felt much softer to the touch with a lovely healthy glow. The pigmentation that I was concerned about did darken but the skin therapist did advise that this would happen after each treatment. After my second treatment, I did notice a reduction in the blackheads on my nose and over the proceeding days, the clarity and texture of my skin seemed to improve. The final treatment really took me by surprise as I saw a vast improvement in the pigmentation on my left cheek and forehead which had lightened significantly. (Below is a photo before and after three sessions and I just realised I have the same outfit on!)

 

Does it get the Blu Blazer Guy approval?

Definitely!!! Being only ten minutes long, this is the perfect facial to fit in to your busy schedule. After only three sessions I have seen some steady results and I can only imagine that they get better over time. What I loved the most was that healthy and rejuvenated glow after each treatment, making it a great choice the day before a special event/night out. The added benefit was that there is absolutely no redness, peeling or downtime making the Carbon Laser Peel the perfect winning combination.

 Whats the cost?

A course of 3 is £360.

Dr Nestor Medical & Cosmetic Centre
Address:
53 Dundas Street,
Edinburgh, EH3 6RS
Telephone:
0131 467 1450
07533 00 6004