Tuesday, 5 March 2019

BUT FIRST SKINCARE

***Disclaimer: This post contains gifted items. Links used are affiliate***

5x skincare newbies you should try next

Forever my motto, #butfirstskincare is as important as drinking water for me. It’s been a few years now since I’ve started to really, but really pay attention to what I put on my face and boy it’s really paid off. My skin looks better than ever before and I’m super grateful for all the learns, all the challenges and all the mini-triumphs. Here are a few newbies in my routine, that you should know about!  

But first... acid toner

I cannot express how introducing this small step into my routine changed my life. And with the return of hero brand to our small UK shores, I made sure to try the highly hyped up Ole Henriksen Glow 2OH Dark Spot Toner (not gifted) comes with a recommendation from the true Queen herself, Jamie Genevieve and I must admit - I’m a believer too. Firstly, the unique lemon sugar scent which I can’t fault, it’s sweet but not in my usual citrus obvious way. I apply with a soaked cotton pad and I let it work for a couple of minutes before continuing with either AM or PM routine. It’s designed for night use but if your skin is used to acids and you are an SPF user, I don’t see the reason you cannot use it in the AM. Personally, I skip a day every so often, usually every 2-3 days to let my skin rest. It makes my skin glow, keeps it in check even around ‘period season’ and it’s super gentle yet effective. It combines the powers of Glycolic Acid, Witch Hazel, Lactic Acid, Phytic Acid, Benzoic Acid, fruit, root & flower extracts (Lemon, Chamomile, Licorice, Sugar Cane, Sandalwood, Radish) and Glycerin. If you’re only just starting with Alpha Hydroxy Acids, it’s important to remember a few things. You should start seeing some effects immediately however the true long lasting effects should show up in 6-12 weeks. Purging can also be experienced especially if your skin displays problematic tendencies. What it means is that AHA’s (and retinol) can bring out all the junk from your pores out on display. Purging can last for days or even weeks so sometimes it’s best to stick with it even if it pains you to do so. Personally, I haven’t been purging in years thanks to staying on top of exfoliation. Overall, I give this toner a 5* rating! Plus the packaging is to die for and the colour reminds me of my favourite eyeshadow! At £22 for 190ml, it's slightly more than your Glow Tonic bottle, but I think it's worth the try if you're looking for a change.

But first... Vitamin C

Ah, the Vitamin C aka the vitamin that makes my skin super happy! Vitamin C in skincare is a crucial step as it boosts collagen production and leaves you with a plump and radiant complexion. It smooths out fine lines and wrinkles, tops skin’s protection against free radicals, helps fight existing environmental changes and prevents further damage. 

I’ve found a perfect vitamin C top up in the Image Vital C Hydrating Antioxidant A C E Serum* (PR sample). With an essence-like watery formula, it sinks in quickly and doesn’t roll under other skincare and makeup. Infused with youth-inducing retinol (vitamin A), 3x Vitamin C complex (Tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate, Magnesium ascorbyl phosphate and Sodium ascorbyl phosphate), softening Tocopherol (Vitamin E), polypeptides (valin, leucin, arginine - wrinkle hero, tyrosine & lysine) alongside green tea, Gotu kola and bearberry to provide truly powerful antioxidant protection that also helps smooth out lines and wrinkles, brighten post acne scarring, helps with collagen production and leaves you looking radiant as never before. My skin reacts well to Vitamin C in most concentrations but if you’re a first time user, I’d start slowly and introduce it into your routine every other day, preferably AM! Whilst I find this super gentle to use twice daily, I usually go for AM application to help my skin protect itself from environmental stressors. Ok, this one's a teensy bit on a pricey side, sitting at £75 for 30ml but boy, I know I'll have to repurchase even if it pains me to say so!

My PM option lately is the brand new Pixi Vitamin-C Caviar Balm** (not gifted but I have an ongoing relationship with Pixi as their brand ambassador). Vitamin C can be quite unstable but with this formula, it’s encapsulated and only ‘bursts’ on contact with skin. You can even feel little grain-like bits when you apply it. The formula is water based and infused with Orange Flower Water, moisturising Glycerin and Betaine, Ascorbic, Ferulic and Lactic Acids, essential oils (Orange Peel, Grapefruit, Lemon Peel) as well as Rice and Willow Bark Extracts to ensure your skin is getting all the antioxidant power up on top of being ultra moisturising. Beware, there’s Shea Butter present but it’s not bothered me yet. Mind you, I only use Shea formulas 2-3 a week tops as it can react with my skin. Some may experience an allergic-like reaction, so it’s important to be aware that it’s there. Personally, it’s a perfect overnight mask - buttery, rich and yet light enough to sink in within few minutes (10 mins tops depending on how much product I use. It also smells abso-fucking-lutely incredible, so you know, I’m sold! It's also £24 for 45ml so it should last forever!

But first... soulful eyes

They say eye area is very prone to ageing quickly and sadly they are right. At 33, I focus my efforts there to ensure all the little lines don’t turn into deep-set wrinkles. Gentle cleansing and powerful formulas usually do a trick! Often under eyes and eyelids can be prone to dehydration (oily lids anyone?) and dryness (under eyes) so it’s important to fight against time here. I almost cried finishing my previous eye cream - more about it here, so I’m extremely happy to introduce its successor: Dr Eve_Ryouth Snake Venom + Collagen Wrinkle Filler Eye Cream* (gifted by the brand). It’s specifically formulated to target the lines around your eyes: crows feet, fine lines and I’ve got to say, I think it does just that. It’s so hard to judge an eye cream,  hardest as usually you have to await the results for quite some time but it seems some results can be seen within a few weeks of use with this one. I’ve been worried about the lines lately but since the introduction of this little gem, I’m starting to see a slight improvement. The eye area looks plumper and smoother and my concealer hasn’t been prone to creasing as much as the lines aren’t quite as deep as they were (k, deep is a bad word but they were more visible before). With 10 active ingredients like a synthetic peptide that mirrors the effect of the paralysing snake venom, it works by reducing your muscular reactions a’la Botox, the only proven anti-ageing (oh how I hate the word!) ingredient Retinol, much needed Collagen, Urea, Argan Oil, Vitamin E just to name a few and it really makes a difference! I use it at night as retinol can cause increased sun sensitivity and I rather not end up with dark spots around my eye area. I love to apply it all over the lids (upwards tap/stroke motion) to lift that hood and usually ring finger gentle tapping towards the nose to ensure best results. At £49 per 15ml, it's a bit of a splurge so it's worth noting for any upcoming sales

But first... GLOW


Ok, you didn’t think I’ll end a skincare post without a mention of glowing skin right. And I’ve got something quite special to introduce to you. Huxley Secret of Sahara Cream: Glow Awakening* (£30 voucher gifted by retailer) does something that my skin have not quite experienced below. We are talking GLOW like you’ve never seen before. I am not exaggerating - you have not experienced quite the glow this moisturiser gives in seconds! Dry to combination skin friendly, this one is for the books. From the first use, I’ve fallen for it and I honestly can’t imagine using a different day moisturiser now. In fact, it’s been a while since I’ve felt the butterflies about any product in ages. When I was first contacted by the very lovely Laura who’s doing PR for Tonic15 online store (home to all things skincare with many vouchers to keep your sale heart happy!) I really didn’t know what to spend my voucher on (gifted). I knew I wanted to try Huxley from the raving reviews by some other bloggers but I wanted something no one in my circle has tried. I researched this cream and one review - here - really sold me on it. Boy, I’m soooooooo grateful that I did as it’s the best thing that happened to me in forever. The quite thick & rich formula goes on smoothly (no dragging here my beauts) and sinks in within minutes. I prefer to use a small scoop, massage it in and leave it be for about 5 minutes. Despite the fact that it feels as if it leaves a small amount not fully sank in, it’s actually great under makeup. In fact, it’s bloody brilliant as a moisturiser/mask/primer combo. It has a very gentle cream like ‘Huxley’ scent, it’s nothing unique yet I love it so much. It’s gentle, soothing, deeply moisturising and ultra-glow giving and I could sing praises about it all day long. Formulated with antioxidant-rich & pollution fighting prickly pear oil, Niacinamide and Odeetox, alongside detoxing Glutathione, brightening and softening Bisabolol and enriched with regenerative SC-Glucan aka skin barrier reinforcement agent, it leaves my skin looking healthy and perfect. It sits nicely in the mid-range at £33 for 50ml.

But first skincare

Thank You For Reading.

With love,



Full Disclaimer: 

In line with an updated CMA/ASA Non-broadcast Code, all products marked with * have been gifted to Beauty Drama Queen for review consideration, therefore, are sponsored and displayed as a form of an advertisement. 

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Products I've bought myself but there's a current or past (up to 12 months) relationship in with the brand present will be marked with **.


Products unmarked have been either purchased by Beauty Drama Queen or gifted by family and friends and therefore not in the scope of the legislation.

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