Brand Overview: La Gaia Unedited

I have tried a lot of skincare products but I have never heard of products using stones and gems. La Gaia Unedited uses them together with vitamins and peptides.

The Macadamia Exfoliate uses Australian ground macadamia bamboo, chamomile, and vitamin e to refine, polish, smooth, and restore moisture levels of the face and body. This felt really cleansing and it was able to offer instant softening to the skin. The thick cream needs thorough rinsing, though. I like using this as a body exfoliator every weekend.

Their Vitamin C serum promises what other vitamin c serums do. It was light on the face and I didn’t have any problem using it. I used it after cleansing and I didn’t feel the need to use moisturizers because it was enough to keep my face feel soft and hydrated. I also liked its texture! The brightening part, though, took a bit of time compared to the other serums I’ve used.

The Amethyst Cream uses amethyst quartz for its healing and regenerative benefits. The cream also has plant essences, seaweed extracts, butters, and bioactive ingredients to replenish moisture loss, reduce surface pigmentation, and restore radiance and luminosity to the skin. This helps moisturize and soften the skin. It’s perfect for the colder months because it’s thick and hydrating.

Using poly-glutamic acid and copper minerals to rebuild the skin’s pH protective barrier and repair deep dermal damage, the Copper Infuse Gel is soothing to the skin especially after exfoliating and waxing.

The La Gaia Unedited products were provided by @lagaiaunedited. Available at lagaia.com.au

Skincare Review: Ole Henriksen Cold Plunge Pore Mask and Pore-Balance Facial Sauna Scrub

The products from the Ole Henriksen Balance Collection aims to reduce oil and refine pores without stripping the skin. They sent over their two exfoliators – the Cold Plunge™ Pore Mask and the Pore-Balance™ Facial Sauna Scrub. These products promise to purify and reduce the appearance of pores and mattify the skin without using parabens, sulfates, or phthalates.

Inspired by the cold plunge part of a Scandinavian sauna cycle, the Cold Plunge™ Pore Mask ($36) is a clay mask uses alpine willowherb and snow lotus to soothe, mattify and refine pores. It also has AHA and BHA to help improve the texture of the skin and the brand’s Green Fusion Complex™ and neem seed oil to help replenish the skin.

This face mask smells a bit rubbery mixed with mint. I like that this feels really cooling to the skin (lasts until I have to rinse it) and feels really gentle. It doesn’t tighten or pull the skin as it dries. The fun turquoise color is uplifting as well. It’s creamy and doesn’t completely dry so it requires more water to rinse but I don’t mind it because it leaves my skin smooth, cleansed, and moisturized. This is a great option for those who have normal skin types looking for a detoxifying mask.

The Pore-Balance™ Facial Sauna Scrub ($28) is inspired by traditional Scandinavian spas and uses a blend of AHAs (glycolic and lactic acids) to lift and loosen dead skin cells. It also contains Icelandic volcanic sand, Green Fusion Complex™, and neem seed oil to purify, unclog, minimize the appearance of pores.

This face scrub also smells a bit minty. Again, this feels really gentle even if it contains small beads, which doesn’t feel coarse. I like using this on my nose and chin, where my pores get easily clogged, to purify and cleanse my skin. This leaves the skin soft, bright, and deeply cleansed.

This combination has helped smooth and maintain a blemish-free skin and helps balance the oil production of my face. I have noticed while using these two, that my skin doesn’t get as oily as usual. I still have to blot in the middle of the day but I would only have to use one blotting paper instead of two.

The Ole Henriksen Cold Plunge™ Pore Mask and Pore-Balance™ Facial Sauna Scrub were provided by @olehenriksen as PR. Available at olehenriksen.com

Bodycare Review: Intoxicating Beauty Radiance on Tap Sugar Polish and Salt Emollient Twist

A skincare cocktail, that’s how Intoxicating Beauty describes their products because they contain wine, hops, sake, and spirits and use these to nourish the skin. Even the packaging is inspired by wine, spirits, sake, and craft brew bottles.

The Radiance on Tap Sugar Polish ($58) is a body polish that promises to soften, soothe, hydrate, and moisturize the skin using natural beer, hops, crushed walnuts, ultra-fine sugar crystals, and botanical oils.

Meanwhile, the Salt Emollient Twist ($58) can be used in the face and body and aims to purify, balance, tone, and control oil production with vodka, shea butter, and salt crystals.

Since I prefer scrubs when it comes to exfoliating my body than my face, I focused this review on using both as body scrubs. Both helped my skin look brighter and even while keeping it moisturized. What I really liked about this is how moisturizing both felt on the skin and how they smelled so good. The Radiance on Tap Sugar Polish smelled like lime-infused beer while the Salt Emollient Twist smelled like sweet vodka. They both felt energizing and fresh. However, the oils tend to spill from the packaging so I hope it’s packaged tighter.

The Intoxicating Beauty Radiance on Tap Sugar Polish and Salt Emollient Twist were provided by @intoxbeautybar and @thewoodsandco @thewoodsandconest . Available at intoxicatingbeauty.com

Monthly Favorites: August 2019

Fresh Beauty Sugar Strawberry Exfoliating Face Wash

The Sugar Strawberry Exfoliating Face Wash from Fresh Beauty ($33) cleanses and exfoliates to refine, soften, and smooth the skin using two sizes of sugar crystals from beetroots, soapberry peel extract, strawberry fruit and blackcurrant fruit extracts, and grapeseed oil. This face cleanser smells a bit like strawberry jam, which isn’t exactly a bad thing since I love strawberries but sometimes, the smell can get a bit concentrated. The actual cleanser has exfoliating sugar cubes that seem to melt with the actual cleanser the more you massage it onto the skin, which for is genius. It exfoliates and calmed my skin in one application. Despite the exfoliating bits, this feels gentle enough for my skin. It lightly exfoliates and, upon rinsing, it leaves the skin slightly smooth. My skin also feels moisturized a bit, not tight or squeaky clean. It’s a good option for some light exfoliation while smelling strawberries.

The Fresh Beauty Sugar Strawberry Exfoliating Face Wash was provide by @freshbeauty and @octoly.

#freshbeautygiftedme #sugarstrawberry #freshbeauty #OctolyFamily #sugarlips

Wander Beauty Drift Away™ Cleanser

Enjoying all things pink recently so I’m always reaching for the cruelty-free products of Wander Beauty.

I’ve been enjoying the Drift Away™ Cleanser ($32), their gel-to-foam cleanser that promises to cleanse, nourish, and vitalize the skin using seawater, kelp, coconut water, acai fruit extract, and guava extract. This face cleanser has a gel texture that turns into a white paste once rubbed on the skin. Then it transforms into a clear color the more you massage it. It’s honestly an adventure. As instructed, this vegan cleanser is meant to be rinsed with warm water but I had reservations the first time I used it. It feels creamy and pasty on the skin that I thought it wouldn’t be able to remove my makeup and it wouldn’t come off cleanly. I was wrong. It removes everything – makeup and oils. It was able to remove even full-coverage foundation but I had to use an eye makeup remover to remove eyeliners and mascaras. As a first cleanser for every day, this leaves my skin feeling squeaky clean, devoid of oils but not tight or dry.

The Wander Beauty Drift Away™ Cleanser was provided by @wanderbeauty. Available at wanderbeauty.com

Ouai Scalp & Body Scrub

When I first started this page, I posted about my adoration for the Wave Spray and the Rose Hair and Body Oil from Ouai because they work well with my extremely dry hair and body.

Another new thing to like is the Scalp & Body Scrub ($38) which promises to deeply cleanse the scalp and skin using sugar crystals, probiotic blend, and coconut oil. First off, this scrub smells luxuriously amazing. Per the website, the scent is so good they made it a fragrance called Melrose Place (sidebar, I have more than enough perfumes but this smells so good.)

As for the product itself, I love it. The sugar crystals are coarse but it doesn’t hurt the skin or the scalp. They’re like crystals that melt onto the skin and leave a lather. It doesn’t leave a film or residue after rinsing, which is a great plus. As a body scrub, my skin just feels cleansed, soft, smooth, and great smelling. Once a week, I use this as a scalp scrub on the weekends to make sure that I have all hair gunk removed as I use texture sprays and hair oils every day to tame flyaways or create added volume. Since the crystals are gentle, it doesn’t hurt the scalp and instead feels relaxing to the scalp.

This is another win for me and a great addition to my selfcare routine.

The Ouai Scalp & Body Scrub was provided by @theouai. Available at theouai.com

Sulwhasoo Bloomstay Vitalizing Water

The Bloomstay Vitalizing Water ($75) from Sulwhasoo uses plum blossom and yuzu to hydrate, revitalize, and moisturize the skin. This face toner is watery but it has a certain weight to it. I’ve been applying this at night as my first toner the past few weeks and I’ve been really happy how nourishing it feels on my skin. I also wake up with soft and plump skin afterward.

*I got this product from Octoly.

Brand Overview: Gruum

Inspired by Scandinavian ideals, British selfcare brand Gruum aims to create purposeful products without gimmicks and labels. Their products are created cruelty-free and are for everyone.

Even their packaging is simple and it really called out the small minimalist voice deep inside me.

Kori, their vegan exfoliating face wash contains orange, eucalyptus, and witch hazel to balance and soothe the skin. It has a gel consistency which feels gentle, even with the exfoliating bits it has. It cleanses the skin without leaving it feeling tight but I personally prefer a foaming cleanser to be used every day. I have this one in my office desk for emergencies though.

Their face toner Gösta has witch hazel, chamomile, and rosemary to reduce shine, prevent clogged pores, and refresh the skin. This stung at first but it subsides after a few seconds. It refreshes and cleanses the skin of impurities a cleanser couldn’t remove. This is a bit strong for every day so, I like using this when my skin is acting up.

To moisturize, Kåre contains rosemary, sage, and green tea go protect and moisturize the skin. This is a very straightforward vegan moisturizer. Its only aim is to moisturize the skin. I like that it doesn’t promise to do anything else. True to its claim, this feels like how a typical moisturizer would feel. Personally, I prefer a more hydrating moisturizer that will manage my #oilyskin but this would work to those with normal skin types.

They also have a coffee body polish aptly named Skrub, which comes in three variants – original, coconut, and strawberry. This body scrub promises to exfoliate, nourish, and illuminate the skin.

Strawberry is a favorite because I love strawberries and I’ve never had a strawberry-scented scrub before. It does smooth and exfoliates the skin with the coarse scrubs that amazingly feels gentle on the skin. My only gripe about this though is about how much mess it creates in the shower. It leaves my tiles stained so I need a few minutes to clean up after showering.

They also have a Shaving Kit that contains Oska, the razor handle made of zinc alloy, Osku, the blade razor ( I have mine in Max 5, which are 5 thin platinum-coated blades) that uses the brand’s Glydå roll system to smooth the skin and provide a closer cut, and Danne, a vegan shave gel that has aloe vera to soothe, witch hazel for its antibacterial properties, and orange for an uplifting sensation. I use this to shave my legs and the ergonomic design of the razor makes it easy to remove hair in one shave. Combined with the #shavegel, which feels light on the skin, the shaving process feels smooth and relaxing.

Its minimalist packaging comes with straightforward products that will be enjoyed by someone who wants a no-frills skincare product.

The Gruum Kori, Gösta, Kåre, Skrub, Oska, Osku, Danne were provided by @gruum. Available at gruum.com