Welcome to another edition of Nic’s Pic ‘n’ Mix! I guess you could say this is similar to a favourites post but instead of committing myself to a monthly favourites I opted for a freer pick and mix when it suits me and my schedule! I have quite a few products that I’ve been reaching for recently, some new, some old and some that will be featured in #3! Here are the lovelies that I decided deserved the limelight for this post:
Mitchell and Peach Kentish Cobnut Scrub – wow! I am in love with this product, so much so that I want to use it every single day but I restrain myself by using it a couple of times/week instead (with much reluctance I might add!). This gem of a scrub was sent as a gift from Alice & White (review) in my last order with them, very generous indeed! Lona, the founder of A&W adores this product and really wanted me to try it out and I am so glad that she did because I’m not so sure I would’ve bought it myself. I received a hand lotion from the same brand a while back and due to not being a great fan of the scent (rose I think it was and I’m really picky when it comes to rose as it’s not a scent I gravitate towards naturally) I haven’t really given Mitchell and Peach much thought….well, suffice to say this scrub has put the brand on my radar again! Mitchell and Peach is a UK brand where the Mitchells have been farming in Kent, England for five generations. All their products are made in England with 100% pure essential oils from the family’s lavender fields, combined with botanical extracts from around the world; violet extract and rose from Egypt and Morocco, ylang-ylang from the Commoros Islands and palmarosa from China, India and Guatemala. Quite the globetrotter in other words! These beautiful oils hit me the moment I opened the lid with the intoxicating scent of ylang-ylang, rose (ha!) and lavender enveloping me in its intricate and mesmerizing embrace. The scent is truly unique and nostalgic of something that I can’t quite put my finger on but needless to say this scrub totally satisfies your olfactory senses making it a beautiful product to use in your evening baths, uplifting and calming at the same time. Those of you who follow me on Instagram know that I recently got a bathtub from my boyfriend so you can imagine how much I’m enjoying my baths every.single.day. There’s something extra special about enjoying a scrub in the bath versus just the shower so this gift came very serendipitously! Apart from the amazing scent that I obviously can’t seem to shut up about, the scrub leaves your skin super smooth from the moment you wash it off thanks to coconut oil, sweet almond oil, jojoba oil and honey. The smoothness stays well into the next day that I don’t need to moisturise after my bath. Another interesting ingredient in this scrub is cobnut shell which is included for its exfoliation properties and one that I’ve never come across before. It’s a type of hazelnut apparently! So a word of caution for those with nut allergies.
So is there not a single gripe with this product? Not really apart from the fact that the tub is made of plastic which actually surprised me as I honestly thought it would be glass, everything else about this product is so exquisite. If it came in a heavy dark glass tub it would get full marks from me! I’m such a stickler for packaging, even a wonky label can throw me off! Yes yes, don’t judge the book by its cover and all that but these things do matter. It won’t stop me from buying this with my own hard earned cash but it was a liiiiiiitle disappointing nonetheless. There, my one and only gripe which has nothing to do with the actual efficacy and beauty of the scrub itself! Mitchell and Peach is yet another company that prides itself on creating a range that is free from parabens, mineral oils, SLS and synthetic colouring and we sure do like the sound of that! For those of you wondering how this compares to Bodhi & Birch’s Rosemary Chi Himalayan Detox Salt Scrub (phew, that was a mouthful!) then I can’t say that one trumps the other as they are quite different. In terms of nourishing and exfoliating your skin I think both are very comparable; what sets them apart is the scent. I love both but they are very different. Think English summer countryside with Mitchell and Peach and exotic Far Eastern spa treatment with Bodhi & Birch!
INCI: Sucrose, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut Oil), Prunus Dulcis (Sweet Almond Oil), Pumice, Corylus Avellana (Cobnut), Glycerin, Buxux Chinensis (Jojoba Oil), Mel (Honey), Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender Oil), Rosa Centifolia (Rose Extract), Vanilla Planifolia (Vanilla Extract), Viola Odorata (Sweet Violet Extract), Cananga Odorata (Ylang Ylang Oil), Cymbopogon Martini (Palmarosa Oil), Geraniol, Citronellol, Limonene, Linalool.
One Love Organics Healthy Locks Dry Shampoo Powder (summer limited edition) – after reading gorgeous Lilly from Genuine Glow’s review on this product I just had to get it! If there’s anything that can aid me from washing my hair every day I need it in my life, preferably yesterday! And from what Lilly was saying about it, this was a no-brainer. Once again, this is another product that smells yummy, fresh and fruity as well as being quite an effective dry shampoo. I had never used one before so I’m still learning the best way to apply it for my hair and exactly how much of the product I need but I think I’ve found a balance that works. My hair gets oily veeery quickly and I can really only have it down the same day that I wash it (so if you see me with a ponytail or bun…) and even when tied up the sides of my hair can seem a little too shiny. Bad shiny. This is where the dry shampoo has saved me as I can go an extra day without a wash and still keep my hair from looking too oily which is pretty much all I’m asking for. Not a miracle. Just one more day without having to shampoo. I’ve found I need to sprinkle some powder into my palm first before applying it to the oiliest parts of my hair/scalp (middle, sides and back of head) where I let it sit for a minute or two and then I just run my fingers through where I’ve applied the product. I should probably use a brush but believe it or not I don’t own one, haha! My hair never gets tangled so have found little use for a brush really even though I know brushing has many more benefits than just detangling hair. I will get around to buying one eventually.
Apart from keeping my hair looking like an oil tanker just spilled, Healthy Locks also makes my hair very soft which is an added bonus. The shampoo is blended with Georgia kaolin clay, hyaluronic acid and silica rich bamboo extract which together help strengthen, nourish and soften hair. I’ve also noticed that my scalp isn’t as itchy even after two whole days of not shampooing. I read recently that dry shampoo works best if you apply it the evening before as when you sleep and roll/turn you’re helping to distribute the product into your hair and scalp. Tried it for the first time the other day but will have to keep doing it to see if it makes a noticeable difference. One gripe? The wonky label! Which also seems a bit too big for the package as one end actually crosses over onto some of the writing…am I being picky? Perhaps but I’m a bit of a perfectionist so small details like these stick out a mile to me and become a bit of an eye sore. Luckily the product itself redeems this hiccup but it does look a little careless.
INCI: oryza sativa (rice) starch, organic zea mays (corn) starch, kaolin, sodium bicarbonate, tapioca starch, bambusa (bamboo) arundinacea stem extract, silica (and) sodium hyaluronate, proprietary natural and organic fragrance compounds.
One Love Organics Apple A Day Brightening Facial Cleanser (summer limited edition) – another product I love using right now, especially as my morning cleanser along with my Pink Clay Konjac sponge. I’m one of those rare creatures that actually likes foaming cleansers and OLO did a great job with this one. It smells fresh, feels so good on the skin as you’re massaging it in and leaves you with soft clear skin without stripping it of its natural oils. I really hope this cleanser becomes an OLO staple product as everyone should be able to get their hands on this all the time! I know I’ll be very sad when I’m finished with it. One pump is enough to wash your entire face as the foam spreads out once you start massaging it in so hopefully it won’t disappear too quickly. This delicious summer cleanser is said to clarify, cleanse and tone the skin with cold-pressed apple oil, apple fruit extracts and a blend of gentle acids. I love when a product does what it claims to do. Coupled with a konjac sponge this is a product no green beauty bunny should be without for fuss-free mornings, summer, winter, spring or fall! (hint hint). Both of these products were bought from Eco Diva Beauty and for me it was a first to order with them; I was very happy with my experience and their confirmation emails are so cute and personal. I will definitely be ordering from them again.
INCI: organic aloe juice (and) water, sodium cocoyl apple amino acids, capryl/caprylyl glucoside, organic glycerin, pyrus malus (apple) fruit extract, pyrus malus (apple) oil, gluconolactone (and) sodium benzoate, malic acid (and) glycolic acid (and) lactic acid (and) citric acid.
Ilia Beauty Pure Mascara in Nightfall – how I scoured the net and read countless reviews on natural mascaras before I decided on this one. And for me it was definitely the right choice. I’m sure there are many more mascaras out there that I need to try and that I’ll no doubt be happy with but for being my very first natural mascara I am mightily impressed. I wanted something that I could use everyday without it damaging my own eyelashes and without the usual fall out I have with conventional mascaras. The latter is why I never ended up finishing any mascaras as my eyes would get irritated and I would keep seeing my precious lashes fall out simply by rubbing my eyes or sliding my fingers along my lashes, ie not pulling! I also wanted something that would keep my lashes soft and I definitely wanted that natural look, none of the vavavoom dramatic lashes as I really like to keep things natural. Probably one of the reasons why I still don’t wear much make up to this day. I’m starting to venture out and test things but it’s slow going! Which has worked out well for me as I haven’t had to deal with greening my make up (apart from mascara!). But back to Ilia’s Nightfall, this little magic wand separates my lashes, lengthens them, thickens them a little in just the amount I like. On the box it comes in it actually says “lightly thickens, lengthens…” and I think that is quite accurate. It also dries very quickly which means I don’t need to wait around with curling my lashes one last time and there is absolutely no flaking or smudging. I only apply one coat but I think a look could be built up with more…I haven’t tried so I don’t know! This mascara is also super easy to remove (I use Aurelia’s Miracle Cleanser, review). My lashes also feel soft, nearly as if there’s nothing on them instead of dry and crusty. Gripe? NONE! All I can say is that the next mascara I buy, if it’s not this one, will have a hard act to follow. Feel free to recommend any other mascaras I should try though! I have my eye on Red Apple Lipstick’s #THELASHPROJECT…looks and sounds like a product I would like. For those wanting to see what Nightfall looks like on my lashes click this link http://instagram.com/p/nh949gwV_J/
INCI: water (aqua), serenoa repens (saw palmetto) fruit extract*, aloe (barbadensis) leaf extract*, hydrogenated glyceryl abietate, brassica campestris, aleurites ford oil copolymer, copernicia cerifera (carnauba) wax*, chrondrus crispus (carrageenan), persea gratissima (avocado) butter, triissostearyl citrate, stearic acid, euphorbia cerifera (candelilla) wax, silica, hydrolyzed jojoba esters, xantham gum, tocopherol (natural vitamin E), sodium hyaluronate, ethylhexylglycerin, phenethyl alcohol. May contain: mica, iron oxide (CI 77499, CI77492, CI77491), ultramarines. *certified organic ingredients.
Magù eco Mineral Blush custom colour #114 – this is one of three beautiful samples I was sent by the lovely Marta of Magù eco, a Swedish mineral make up brand (woot woot!). I had the pleasure of meeting Marta at a Balance Me event that Alice & White hosted back in April where we got to chatting about green skincare and make up (what else!). In our conversation I found out that she creates custom blended mineral make up with as few mineral pigments as possible and that she is passionate about creating products from a sustainable and ecological point of view. Marta is a very unassuming and humble person and I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know her that evening. She has offered to give me a consultation once her brick-and-mortar has been renovated and boy do I need one! I’m practically a make up newbie here so any advice from a pro is much appreciated. In the meantime, Marta was very kind enough to send me some blush samples and I have particularly fallen in love with #114 which at first glance looks much too dusky-rosey for my skin tone but which actually blends in really well, giving me a natural sun-kissed look. The blushes are highly pigmented so you only need the teeny tiniest amount. I learned that the hard way! It also has good staying power and I personally don’t feel the need to reapply during the day. I am a bit tanned right now so it will be interesting to see how the colour looks on paler skin and if it does need a touch up but for now I am super happy with this product. Gripe? Nothing again! I don’t have swatches for this but for those of you who follow me on Instagram can see me wearing this in all the recent pics unless it says I’m not wearing any make up.
So those were Nic’s Pic ‘n’ Mix for this time. Have any of you tried any of the above? I would be more than happy to receive recommendations on other similar products that I’ve mentioned here so don’t be shy in the comments section. It won’t bite, I promise!
As always, all views stated are my own and nothing has been sent to me for consideration, rather just as gifts. I have chosen to review these products as I deem them stellar! OLO and Ilia items were bought with my own Gustavs (yeah, no, it doesn’t quite have the same ring to it as a Benjamin but you get the picture!) along with an evil eye from my bank account.