- Advertisement information: this post discusses items gifted to me with no obligation to share them (marked *). In addition I have / have had a brand relationship with Kosame and Ameliorate (gifting) and Look Fantastic and Tonic 15 (affiliate codes used below) and Boots, the Inkey List and Braun (paid advertorial content). My blog has Skimlinks and RewardStyle installed to automatically monetise purchases of products I link on my blog, therefore this post may contain affiliate links. All opinions remain my own and please refer to my Disclosure Page for further detail -
Today I'm doing a bit of a different post; I've had a few new hair and body bits in and I thought it might be helpful if I rounded them all up and did a review!
I have two different body wash options here to talk about, the first of which is the Lovbod Fresh Up Body Wash* | £33. This is a K-Beauty brand available at Kosame, and their concept is something I have an entire post pencilled in on: skincare for your body. They're all about body positivity and looking after the skin on your body in the same way as you do the skin your face. This formula isn't overly scented, it's designed to be pH balanced, gentle and moisturising. If you're usually someone who uses products like Sanex and CeraVe but want something more luxurious; check the specific ingredients in each product, but this brand could be for you. Although those of us with dry and sensitive skin often know that the best thing is to go for something gentle and fragrance-free, the options on the market are often unglamorous to say the least! This product gives those nice touches like pretty packaging, a more luxurious feel and a super-moisturising and gentle formula all in one product. The other option I love is on the other end of the scale in terms of fragrance, but I've been pretty obsessed with the brand recently! I discovered Soapsmith when I was researching UK-based black-owned beauty brands earlier in the summer. First up; the packaging is beautiful and so luxurious! Soapsmith create bath and body products inspired by different areas of London. The Soapsmith Brick Lane Hand & Body Wash* | £16 | is scented with amber, pepper and sandalwood, to evoke the feeling of being in the markets, bustle and restaurants of Brick Lane. This is a deep, spicy scent that's my partner's favourite out of the Soapsmith products I have - it's absolutely beautiful and the scent lingers around like a perfume so you can have a little sniff of yourself during the day and still get it! (Am I the only one who does that...?)
I also have two body lotions. The first is a lightweight, more scented option in the Huxley Moroccan Gardener Body Lotion* | £27 (15% off with code JASMINETALKSBEAUTY). This has been lovely during the summer months because I have such dry skin that moisturiser is a non-negotiable but something a little more lotion-like is definitely welcome. This formula still prevents my skin feeling dry and provides lasting moisture with panthenol, prickly pear seed oil and blackcurrant seed oil. It also smells divine; I have the hand cream and the candle in this scent too! Its notes are grass, florals and musk; it smells gorgeously sweet but also really refreshing at the same time. The other body lotion is an old favourite in a new form: the Ameliorate Transforming Body Lotion in Rose* | £24 (15% off with code JASMINETALKS_LF). This is effectively an acid exfoliator for your body; it's formulated with AHAs and moisturising ingredients like sweet almond oil. Just a word of warning; don't use this immediately after hair removal (or it will BURN!) and use sunscreen after use (I personally use this before bed, but the sunscreen is still necessary the following morning). This is the beautiful rose-scented version of the original legendary product formulated to tackle keratosis pilaris (KP). I always have and probably always will have quite bad KP on my legs specifically and it's just one of those things I've had to come to terms with about my body. I don't expect any product to magically make this condition disappear and it's something I just have to accept, however it's nice to use a product like this which has (for me) helped smooth things out a little and make the redness fade a little.
The last product I have in this category is the Seams Beauty Couturier's Hand Cream* | £14. I've always been a slightly over-washer of my hands and this has only intensified since the start of the COVID pandemic. This leads to very dry hands, and whilst there's usually a light lotion on the side of our sink, it never quite cuts it for me. At the same time, I personally find that a lot of richer, more heavy-duty hand creams are impractical to use during the daytime because they're a bit too greasy and slippery. This hand cream absorbs with no excess at all really quickly and provides lasting moisture with ingredients like B5 (to help retain moisture in the skin), nail-strengthening keratin and moisturising macadamia and rosehip oils, alongside shea butter.
- TOOLS -
I also have a couple of new tools that I've been using of late. The first are the Tweezerman 40th Birthday Anniversary Tweezer* | £23. These tweezers are legendary for good reason! They're what I've used historically and during lockdown I was reaching for them a bit more often; whilst I try not to mess around too much with my shape, given we were without threading for months (and I've still not had my brows done), a bit of a tidy up of strays and plucking in-between was needed! These tweezers have fantastic grip, never catch on my skin and always seem to be able to get the hair, no matter how short it is.
A bit of a revelation for me has been the Braun Silk Epil-9 Flex* | £159.99. Despite having been told by my friends repeatedly that epilation is the way and the light for several years, I only just got on it! It's safe to say I wish I'd done this sooner. It's a little fiddly on the armpits, but fantastic for legs. It removes hair from the root just like waxing but is obviously a single investment instead of £20-35 a go. It lasts up to 2 weeks for me, which makes my hair removal regime feel really relaxed and low-maintenance. I really can't give too much of my energy to this sort of thing and this just makes it easy.
- HAIR -
I recently discovered the Fable and Mane HoliRoots Hair Oil* | £25 | and hadn't really come across a product quite like it before. This is a blend of moisturising oils such as castor, jojoba, safflower and sesame that has this incredible spicy fragrance to it. The concept with this is that you apply it to your hair and scalp before bed, it absorbs overnight and then you wash your hair in the morning. This is a really great option for people with quite fine hair that gets easily weighed down with different products (I don't class myself as one but sometimes I do realise I've overdone it with the product and made my hair feel a bit greasy as a result!) As you're washing it out, there's no heavy oil residue, however your hair will still feel softer and look healthier after use! Plus the gorgeous scent sticks around.
I also have two scalp treatments here to talk about, both of which actually quite impressed me - I'm currently alternating between the two on each wash. The first is Centred En-Root Scalp Treatment* | £36. This is an oil-based treatment that's formulated with nourishing oils like hemp and jojoba, alongside tea tree oil, which can actually really help flaky scalps. There's also a little salicylic acid in here to exfoliate the scalp. It's recommended to use this for any amount of time between 20 minutes and 2 hours, though some people might be happy to leave it on overnight (I usually just pop it on whilst I'm sat at my desk working from home and hope that no one unexpectedly video calls me!) I find this really helps with the flakiness of my scalp and it's made me realise that scrubbing the life out of my it really wasn't the answer; just like it isn't if you get flaky skin on your face. My dry, irritated, inflamed scalp needed both nourishment and exfoliation. Speaking of which, I've switched from physical to chemical exfoliation on my scalp too and now use the Inkey List's Salicylic Acid Exfoliating Scalp Treatment | £11.99. I know a lot of people don't like the pump packaging so they've since changed it, but it's never bothered me too much. My only gripe is really about how small the bottle is for a hair product. Anyway, this has a serum-like texture and you simply apply it to your scalp, leave it for 10 minutes and then wash your hair as usual. Salicylic acid is a pore-penetrating chemical exfoliant that can really get in there and clear out dead skin cells. I'm definitely noticing less itching and irritation in my scalp these days and this product is a big part of that.
I also recently tried out the Centred Daily Calma Shampoo* | £22. Again, this shampoo is designed for irritated, dry, flaky scalps. It's free from sulphates (which can be very drying and exacerbate the issue) and is formulated with soothing chamomile and aloe, alongside amino acids aimed at improving barrier function in the hair. I find it does the job without being overly drying. I'd say it's a nice, gentle everyday cleanser but there's no 'treatment' element to it, so on its own it's not something that's massively helped with my scalp problems, it just keeps things clean without being harsh and best works in conjunction with the treatment.
A product type I don't think I'd tried before is a hair primer. However, I recently started using the Shrub Prepare & Protect Hair Primer* | £9.99 | before blow-drying my hair and it's been a really nice addition to my routine. This is a lightweight lotion infused with heat protection and fragrant, moisturising essential oils. I find it really helps me get a smooth blow-dry and it makes my hair feel softer and more nourished without adding any weight or greasiness to it. Another hair product, which is an old favourite I tend to pick up every summer is the ColourWow Dream Coat Supernatural Spray* | £25 (15% off with code JASMINETALKS_LF). This is a lightweight mist you use on your hair prior to blow-drying and it doesn't make my hair feel crispy or sticky. It acts as a humidity protector, so if you sometimes find that you'll style or blow-dry your hair and then step out into a moist atmosphere and it immediately starts to wave and frizz; this really helps keep things sleek.
Finally, for hair products, I actually have a bit of a miss! You can take my opinion on the Living Proof Perfect Hair Day Dry Shampoo* | £18 (15% off with code JASMINETALKS_LF) | with a pinch of salt, because it seems to have amazing reviews everywhere! However, I can only speak on my personal experience; this has a lightweight, almost-transparent formula, which is great. It absorbs oils without leaving that visible white powdery residue in my roots and does add volume to my hair. However, for me, this formula really irritated my scalp! When I'm using dry shampoo, it's probably when my hair is pretty ready for a wash anyway, which is when I tend to experience some irritation, but I just found this made it so much worse. If you have a dry, sensitive scalp like me; this might not work for you.
Have you tried any of these products or brands? Let me know your thoughts on them in the comments!