February 26th 2021
Christmas is just around the corner, but which products have managed to stand out from the tinsel?
From happy hair saviours to festive fragrances and overnight skin boosts to game-changing blushers, these are the products we thought you should know about this week.
Click through the gallery to see which products made the cut...
Why we love it: A decadent and delicious blend of citrus and sandalwood, for a sophisticated Christmas scent
Review: “If you wanted a winter warmer in a bottle, then look no further than the limited edition scent from Jo Malone. A warming blend of citrus, sweet orange and ripe mandarin this Orange Bitters Cologne is intense without being overpowering, and lasts incredibly well all evening. I never usually pick a fruity scent, and although the orange layer is what comes through the most here, I think the base notes of sandalwood and amber, help to balance out the orange. Packaged in a stunning graphic harlequin print, this is self-gifting you cannot miss out on. I am just praying it eventually appears in the main collection, as it's one I will truly miss when it's gone.”
Reviewer: Sarah McGinnis, Art Editor
Why we love it: Smooth, silky hair wth zero frizz.
Review: “I have très difficult hair; in its natural state it is a bit like Johnny Depp in Edward Scissorhands (but worse). I have tried every hair smoothing conditioner, product and keratin treatment on the market in a bid to tame its wayward ways. Keratin treatments, for me, have been an absolute life saver… they have cut hours off my drying time a month and cut back the frizz without my hair looking totally straight.
"You may have heard me squeal with delight, therefore, when the email from Michaeljohn hair salons dropped into my inbox asking me to trial their new Keraplex hair treatment. What is it? This treatment combines the use of Olaplex and keratin. Olaplex, if you haven’t heard of it, is an ingenious product that has made its way into most hair salons in the last year or two - it has the ability to repair hair and prevent damage (it is used in colour processes in most salons now). Olaplex prevents any damage that a traditional Brazilian blow dry may cause.
Performed by Dayne Dante, senior stylist at Michaeljohn, it is quite a lengthy treatment (two and a half hours) where the Olaplex is applied and left on, then removed then the keratin treatment is applied which is then ironed in. Dayne asks you first what sort of result you would like to create and he mixes a concoction that’s bespoke to your hair. If you have fine hair, for example, he will put together a treatment that won’t leave your hair flat. Then you have to leave it on for two days (where your hair looks like it died a bit), before washing out. And wow what a result. Pre-treatment, I would have to battle with smoothing brushes and straightening irons; I rough dry it now - it’s almost as smooth without any styling intervention and it should last three to four months. There is zero frizz and my hair feels very soft to touch; I used the curling tongs this morning and it hasn’t affected my hair’s ability to hold a wave at all. A miracle? For me, yes.”
Reviewer: Susannah Taylor, Editor-in-Chief
Why we love it: The cutest pot of Vaseline, created in partnership with one of Britain’s iconic modern designers
Review: "Call me pretentious, but for me, beauty is not just about what it does and how it looks on the body, but also about how it looks on your vanity table. It is for this reason, that you would never see a pot of Vaseline sitting on the top of my makeup drawers... until now.
"Vaseline has teamed up with cool British designer, Lulu Guinness and used her familiar trademark Doll Face to turn this everyday cult skincare product into an even cooler limited edition pot of essential lip therapy - one that I would love to have on my dressing table or tucked inside my makeup bag. The product is still the same, but somehow the funky design makes it feel all the more special, and being just £2.99, it is the most affordable product you can possibly buy from Lulu Guinness. Perfect for a stocking filler, Secret Santa gift and the top of makeup drawers."
Reviewer: Gemma Painter, Digital Marketing Manager
Why we love it: An overnight boost of hydration and radiance, perfect for this time of year
Review: “I am a massive fan of the Liz Earle Superskin range. The serum (linked here http://bit.ly/2hi2n1E) and the eye cream (linked here http://bit.ly/2hqhgMK) are firm favourites in my skincare routine and as an overnight mask junkie, when this launched I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. This really doesn’t disappoint. The mask is applied before you head to bed and after cleansing and toning. It goes on like a moisturiser, and although it feels a little heavier than your day-to-day hydration, come the morning your skin is left hydrated, radiant-looking and evened out. It is fast becoming a favourite in my routine - and a saviour on those evenings when perhaps I’ve had one too many glasses of wine.”
Reviewer: Lorna Patrick, Marketing Assistant
Why we love it: A genius British invention that gets the last bits out of your cream or toothpaste tube.
Review: "This brilliant little gadget pays for itself almost instantly by making your beauty products (the ones that come in a tube) last longer. It’s shaped like a kind of alien flower – you wouldn’t have a clue what is was if you found one lying around your house (in fact Christmas party game anyone – guess the mystery object?). It was invented by two friends who were annoyed at the amount of product they’d thrown away simply because getting the last drops out of the tube was too much of a faff. They teamed up with an inventor to design their way out of the problem. Three years on, the result is The Squider, hashtag ‘get more out’. How much more? ‘10 to 20 per cent depending on how good you are,’ chirps the packaging.
"And it’s true. I have gained a full two weeks’ extra life out of my current tube of toothpaste without creating any claggy mess in the process. The secret is not folding the tube up from the bottom, but creasing it in half lengthways and sliding the Squidger (and with it the recalcitrant product) up to below the rim of the tube. Check it out on this Squidger video. Available in an array of funky colours, this is the ultimate stocking filler for beauty buffs who hate waste and love a gadget."
Reviewer: Victoria Woodhall, Deputy Editor
Why we love it: A welcome change from highlighter sticks
Review: "I haven’t used a proper blusher now for some time, previously favouring highlighter sticks that don’t require a brush and leave cheeks looking quite dewy. I have, however, been completely converted by this Dior Blush Splendor which is smooth to the skin and leaves a very subtle 'just got back from tending my amazing walled vegetable garden' glow. With its peachy tones and very subtle sparkle, its effect on the skin is how I imagine supermodels wake up naturally. If, like me, you’re more used to highlighter sticks, this will be much more of a matte finish than you’re used to, but with the new year around the corner, it’s definitely time to switch it up - the results are sculpted, rosy looking cheeks!"
Reviewer: Alecka Micklewright, Commercial Director
Why we love it: A limited edition that creates feathery, fluttery lashes
Review: “I’ve always adored Eyeko’s products - I love that they focus on eyes and do it well, so it’s no surprise that their latest mascara, a collaboration with French brand Colette, is another winning formula. My lashes are somewhat lacking in volume and density but with a few swipes of this they looked instantly fuller; the curved bristle brush really pulls through the lashes, combing away clumps and lengthening and curling as it goes. Best of all, the formula is really lightweight - I like lashings of mascara, which I built up gradually, yet even with a few coats my lashes still looked and felt feathery and almost natural (but better). French style meets London indeed.”
Reviewer: Judy Johnson, Online Editor
Why we love it: Everything I need is in it!
Review: "With so much to learn, read, listen to and watch in a bid to decipher what’s going on in your body during pregnancy, anything that offers a one-stop-shop of answers is a keeper in my mind! That’s why I’m loving the Mama Mio Pregnancy Saviours Kit, which contains everything from a Tummy Rub Butter and Lucky Legs gel, to a Pregnancy Boob Tube cream and even a Liquid Yoga Space Spray for instant mental relaxation. The Tummy Rub Butter has got to be the star of the show as a thick, cool cream that helps you massage your bump as your rub, to relieve any itchy skin, (hopefully) keep the stretch marks at bay and leave your skin feeling well hydrated but, importantly, not greasy. I’d recommend morning and night application for best results. The Lucky Legs gel is a dream to apply to tired and puffy legs, with every swipe leaving behind a cooling trail of spearmint, ginger and tangy tangerine - I only wish the bottle was bigger! The Pregnancy Boob Tube is rich in omegas to help your sensitive skin on the chest and decolletage area cope with the ever-changing volume in this area (will be using this one post-pregnancy too, I think). Finally, the Liquid Yoga Space Spray provides a burst of calm wherever you may be, thanks to its perfect blend of essential oils. I use mine when getting ready for bed in the evening, as helps me get in the right headspace before lying down for a night of inevitable tossing and turning!"
Reviewer: Gemma Bellman, Managing Director
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Why we love it: No need to apply liner or mascara for three months = winning
Review: “I’m going to put a few things out there. Firstly, I’ve never had eyelash extensions before. Secondly, this treatment is eye wateringly expensive if you go the whole hog. The thing is, lashes like this don’t come along every day. The teeny, tiny, soft lashes ‘mirror’ your natural eyelashes and are tailored to your eye shape, style and eyelash ‘aim’- whether you desire feline flicks, full-on thickness or just a subtle sprinkling (in which case your treatment will ring in cheaper). Daxita is renowned for her precise application and expertise, creating a bespoke effect for each and every client, which is quite something if you’re used to strip lashes. She must also be in the running for some kind of World Record for speed of application- I was finished with a full set after just over an hour, which is apparently nigh on unheard of such fiddly work. If you’ve got a wedding, special occasion or some kind of milestone coming up, Mirror Lashes will not only make you look ‘can’t quite put your finger on it’ fantastic, but they also last up to three months and fall out gradually by themselves, so there’s no faff regarding professional top-ups or removal. A treat, certainly, but worth it if weedy lashes are your bugbear.”
Reviewer: Anna Hunter, Senior Features Writer
Why we love it: A cleansing and caring hand wash that provides a helping hand in more ways than one.
Review: “With an inspiring backstory that gives back as much as it gifts hands, this sweetly scented and silky pick has made for the perfect addition to the sides of both my kitchen and bathroom sinks.
“Wonderfully hydrating, it leaves my hands squeaky clean without feeling stripped (a key quality that I look for in a hand wash), thanks to a hydrating and soothing cocktail of cocoa butter, pro-vitamin B5, aloe vera extract and tea tree oil. That being said though, its inspiration and brand ethos are two attributes in particular that make it a step above other suds on the market. Employing people who are visually impaired, disabled and disadvantaged, the company puts all profits back into the business to create even more jobs and opportunities, while also building the skills, confidence and independence of its workforce. A cause that’s definitely worth supporting and a product that delivers on its promises - it's the ultimate helping hand, if you ask me.”
Reviewer: Ayesha Muttucumaru, Senior Features Writer
February 26th 2021
February 26th 2021