Sunday, 23 September 2018

Cindy Joseph BOOM Clean

RRP: from $32

--What does the promo say?—
“Boom CLEAN is made with a gentle cleaning agent designed for sensitive skin. Safe for everyday use on all skin types.”
Enjoy beautifully refreshed skin with a daily cleanser made from the purest ingredients. Carefully formulated to our high standards, Boom Clean gently removes dirt, makeup, and pollutants without stripping away nutrients or moisture.
Boom Clean is Safe, Boom Clean is Pure
Our carefully blended formula is good for the skin as well as body and gentle enough for everyday use. Made only with hand-selected ingredients that meet our high standards. No soaps, perfumes or impurities—just clean.”

As with all BOOM products, presentation is minimalist.  BOOM CLEAN is sold in a white bottle with a lid that flips up to dispense the product through a small nozzle.  The BOOM logo on the label has been altered to blue so that it stands out from the other products as a cleanser. The bottle is opaque so you cannot see how much is left whilst using it, although the decreasing weight of the bottle gives you a fairly good idea.

Instructions for application are as follows:
Apply to wet skin and massage over the entire area with fingers. Use washcloth if desired. Safe to use on eyes. Rinse off thoroughly with water.  Moisturise with Boom Silk, Boom Cotton, or Boomstick Glo.

BOOM CLEAN is a clear, gel-like substance.

Despite the coconut-oil derived products listed, BOOM CLEAN actually smells more of fresh lemons - which likely comes from the grapefruit peel oil that the product contains.

--Texture and consistency--
A viscous substance with a uniform consistency that feels silky on application. 
Only a small amount is required to cleanse the whole face.  It gently foams as you massage it in.

--Effects on the skin—
Skin feels fresh and deep-cleansed after rinsing. If you do not wear a lot of make-up (for example, if you are only wearing the BOOMSTICK TRIO), then this cleanser will remove it.  It will even remove a fair amount of mascara…although it is not meant for this purpose.  An eye-make-up remover is needed to clear lashes of all traces of mascara. It should be noted that if you wear more heavy-duty make-up products, then you will need to remove them properly before using BOOM CLEAN to benefit from the deep cleansing.
--Value for money--
I was given this product free to trial for Bianca’s Beauty Blog (thank you, BOOM!). At $32 for 4oz, this may seem an expensive product but as so little is used it lasts ages.  I am finding that the combination of BOOM products on my skin has definitely improved the texture and quality of my skin tone so I would purchase this for myself - even with the shipping costs included. S
ometimes it is worth placing a bulk order with other BOOM products to increase value for money. International flat rate shipping charge costs $30, and it takes between 7 – 15 working days to arrive (though some shipments have taken as little as 5 days to arrive in mainland Europe). Be sure to select this flat shipping rate option, or you may be faced with additional customs charges when your package arrives.  

perfect partners

BOOM SILK all-over face and body moisturizer (from $27)
BOOM COTTON shine control moisturizer (from $32)
BOOM MASK rejuvenating, cleansing and moisturizing mask (from $42)
BOOM NECTAR skin serum (from $54)

reviewed by Sarah Cross

Sunday, 9 September 2018

Joy by Dior Eau de Parfum

RRP: from £54 for 30ml

--What does the promo say?--
"The new JOY by Dior fragrance is immediate, clear and generous. Joy is finally captured in a scent, marked by both enveloping softness and energy. An ode to pleasure and life. An Eau de Parfum illuminated by the vibrant smile of flowers and citrus fruits, the smooth caress of woods and the serenity of musks. A fragrance with a thousand nuances and facets, yet crystal-clear. "JOY by Dior expresses this remarkable feeling of joy by offering an olfactive interpretation of light. This perfume resembles certain pointillist paintings that are rich with a precise, yet not too obvious, technique. It is constructed with multiple nuances, a myriad of facets that lead to an expression that is clear and self-evident." (François Demachy, Dior Perfumer-Creator)
Zested Bergamot and Mandarin explode in unison with flowers. Grasse Rose, in both Essence and Absolute form, as well as heady Jasmine, blend with these delectable fruits in a vibrant smile. Warm and creamy Sandalwood embraces us in softness. An intimate signature, the clear and powdery whisper of musks creates a tender and sensual skin-on-skin effect. Its bottle is both luminous and precious. Its femininity shines through in the brilliant silver and radiant pink of this instantly attractive juice. A bright shining silver thread wraps around the lid, like a light jewel delicately engraved with its name, which curls around in a perfect O."

The bottle is ergonomically pleasing and elegant, and the silver touches prove sophisticated and yet modern in their femininity. The spray mechanism is decisive without being wasteful and I always enjoy a completely see-through bottle (so you can always see how much is left while being able to enjoy the fragrance's colour) - though naturally this means you have to keep it away from direct sunlight.

The Dior website recommends preceding application with the Dior body milk before spritzing the EDP onto pulse points (on wrists and neck, and behind ears). Even if you only have the fragrance itself, though, this makes for an easy addition to your morning routine and a prolonged enjoyment of the scent.

The rose-coloured liquid is perfectly evocative of the roses from Grasse that are used in the fragrance, while remaining invisible when sprayed onto skin.

Some will be pleased to know that the rose element is not dominant; indeed, it is one that can be risky to use due to its tendency to be overpowering. It's therefore present as an accentuation rather than the main event. The woodier aspects - i.e., the jasmine and sandalwood - are the most noticeable, while being tempered by the slightly lighter bergamot (again, a scent that tends to divide the crowd). It's a well-balanced fragrance that unfortunately was too heavy, maybe even taking a slightly powdery turn, for my particular taste - I was disappointed to find the mandarin virtually undetectable as I prefer perfumes with sparklier top notes. Nevertheless, a grownup and sophisticated effect is created.

The headier components of this fragrance are what enable it to deliver in terms of staying power; the fragrance settles down nicely so that you shouldn't have to reapply during the day.

--Value for money--
This has been one of Dior's biggest fragrance launches and I had been looking forward to trying it. If you enjoy the sandalwood and jasmine base notes then this is definitely the perfume for you; the ingredients used are clearly of high quality and despite the slightly eye-watering price tag you can be confident that a bottle will last you a while. Sadly, it's not for me.
perfect partner
Joy by Dior Moisturizing Body Lotion, £42.50 for 200ml

Monday, 3 September 2018

Gatineau Purifying Primrose Gel Cleanser

RRP: from £21

--What does the promo say?--
"A must-have product for oily skins, our Purifying Primrose Gel Cleanser removes all traces of make-up and impurities whilst normalising surface oils. Rich in primrose extracts, this foaming gel unclogs and tightens pores with a non-drying formula. Perfect for those prone to breakouts and blackheads, this conditioning cleanser refines the complexion leaving your skin perfectly clear and shine-free. Suitable for all ages, particularly those with oily/combination skin types."

The see-through bottle means you can always see how much is left and the flip-top lid is practical too. The logo is minimalist and sophisticated.

The Gatineau website says you need to "lather a small amount between hands before applying to the face and neck in circular motions, avoiding the eye area. Rinse off with cool water in the morning and warm water in the evening." I actually did this twice to ensure that not only was all makeup removed but my skin cleaned too. The double-cleanse sounds wasteful but a little goes a long way - so you're not sloshing loads of product around.

The gel cleanser is a pleasing coral colour in the bottle, while leaving no visible residue on the skin.

A largely scentless experience, which is great for those who value subtlety in their products and don't want something overly perfumed.

--Texture and consistency--
A really smooth gel which lathers sufficiently to remove makeup as well as daily grease and grime.

--Effects on the skin--
As mentioned above, a double cleanse will ensure that all makeup is removed as well as cleaning the skin. I was really impressed that it actually did remove makeup and did not feel harsh and abrasive on the skin. Skin also felt and looked calm and mattified. It's also gentle enough to remove eye makeup without stinging the delicate eye area, while still removing even tough eyeshadow and mascara in one go.

--Value for money--
I actually bought mine as part of a gift set, which gave me 4 products for £28 (cleanser, toner, exfoliator and flannel). I'd always recommend going this route wherever possible as it's a great way to try out products before committing to buying them individually. Unfortunately the set I bought is no longer available, so where this fails, I'd always recommend shopping around - and while I would actually pay the RRP for this cleanser, as it's so gentle but effective, I also do love a good bargain, and have found this cleanser for £9.95 via FragranceDirect, which is an absolute steal. Shame the primrose toner no longer exists - but Gatineau's wide range means there's something for everyone, and the Gentle Silk Toner I recommend below should suit oily, sensitive 
and combination skin types. 

perfect partner
Gentle Silk Toner, £21
Sérenité Multi Protective Cream, £65