Friday 28 August 2015

Speed Review: Tommyguns Fig & Plum Shampoo and Fig, Plum & Marshmallow Conditioner

I've recently been trialling the shampoo and conditioner from Tommyguns' Fig & Plum range, which is aimed at those with frizzy, chaotic & unruly hair types, whether styling it straight or curly. The products appealed to me because my hair is frizz prone and Fig & Plum are supposedly meant to enrich hair, leaving it more manageable. The Conditioner in particular appealed to me because it contains Marshmallow extract to soothe & help prevent breakage, which my fine hair is prone to.

Both the shampoo & conditioner are presented in square plastic bottles with rounded edges, which look chic in the bathroom and give an impression that the products are higher end than the price tags suggest.

First up, Tommyguns Fig & Plum Shampoo. The packaging, which features a flip top lid, is functional for purpose and I liked that the transparent bottle meant I could tell how much was remaining. Tommyguns Fig & Plum Shampoo is a relatively liquid, maroon coloured gel which had an incredible fresh, juicy plum scent which I adored (sadly, it's not noticeable in hair once it is dried and styled).  The shampoo produces a generous lather meaning that a little goes a long way. As a shampoo, it inherently rinses away easily.

As aforementioned, in terms of aesthetics, I liked the packaging of Tommyguns Fig, Plum & Marshmallow Conditioner. Unfortunately, it's not functional for purpose. I wish that it had been designed with a handy pump rather than the flip top lid. It's not the easiest bottle to squeeze, which means that it's difficult to release the relatively thick conditioner and I found this frustrating, particularly when I was in a hurry. I'd also have preferred a transparent bottle to be able to tell how much product was remaining.

The best thing about Tommyguns Fig, Plum & Marshmallow Conditioner is the incredible scent which reminded me of a sensual perfume, with a hint of sweetness from the plum ingredient (albeit not sickly). Again, I was disappointed to find that it was difficult to detect in my hair once it had been dried & styled. Despite the thick texture, I found it easy to work the conditioner through my hair and rinsability was average.

I trialled these products as I always do for haircare- trying the shampoo on its own with my usual conditioner, the conditioner on its own with my usual shampoo and also, both the shampoo and conditioner together. I was surprised that it seemed to be the shampoo which weighed down my fine hair. Whilst my hair was left looking shiny after using the shampoo, it was also weighed down and lacked movement (this was the case when I tried the shampoo alone with my usual conditioner as well as when I tried both the shampoo & conditioner together).

Following use of the conditioner, my hair was left feeling soft and looking incredibly shiny. I didn't notice that frizz was diminished despite it being aimed at those with frizzy, chaotic & unruly hair. I was pleased that my fine hair wasn't weighed down but looked thick, volumised & had a healthy movement/ bounce so for this reason, I preferred the conditioner.

At £5.50 for 250ml each, I feel that both Tommyguns Fig & Plum Shampoo and Tommyguns Fig, Plum & Marshmallow Conditioner offer good value for money. However, I'd personally be unlikely to repurchase because of the issues I noticed with my fine hair being weighed down following use of the shampoo and purely because of the frustrations I had in terms of packaging functionality of the conditioner. However, if you have thicker hair or more patience than me then I'd certainly recommend checking these out.

Wednesday 26 August 2015

Speed Review: Dr Nick Lowe Double Duty SPF15 Hand Cream


They say that you can tell a person's age by looking at their hands yet despite my strict approach to facial skincare (& in particular, wearing sun protection on a daily basis), I'm guilty of neglecting my hands. With this in mind, I was excited to try Dr Nick Lowe Double Duty SPF15 Hand Cream.

The packaging- a box with a fairly minimalist design in turquoise & white- emphasizes the clinical nature of the brand. Inside is a similarly minimalist tube with a functional flip top dispenser. It's not the most exciting packaging but it feels relatively high end thanks to the "doctor" brand message.

Dr Nick Lowe Double Duty SPF15 Hand Cream is a rich cream. Be aware that a little goes a long way. The travel friendly 100ml tube will last a long time. It's very nourishing so would be a good choice for those with mature skin or very dry hands.

Personally, the botanical (& almost medicinal) scent wasn't to my liking. Thankfully, I couldn't notice any discernable scent once the cream was absorbed. However, I did notice that a greasy residue was left which wasn't to my liking, particularly as the main time that I use hand cream is at work when I want to apply it then promptly carry on with jobs without having to wait for a cream to absorb.

Following use, my hands were left looking and feeling nourished & conditioned. I was impressed to note that this feeling lasted for hours following application. It's effective as a richly moisturising hand cream but I didn't enjoy the usage and it's this which would put me off repurchasing.

Dr Nick Lowe Double Duty SPF15 Hand Cream costs £15 for 100ml.

Monday 24 August 2015

Speed Review: Time Bomb Take-Off Time Cleansing Cream


Regular readers will know that I favour oil based cleansers but I've recently been trialling Time Bomb Take-Off Time Cleansing Cream, having been sent a sample for review.

On first impressions, I liked the packaging- a slimline 125ml functional tube with bold font and clear directions.

As the name suggests, the texture is a lightweight cream which is applied to damp skin. It doesn't lather- which I appreciated as I generally find that formulas containing harsh detergents & foaming agents strip the skin- but nonetheless, a little goes a long way.

Thanks to the inclusion of lavender oil, Time Bomb Take-Off Time Cleansing Cream has a very subtle lavender scent which means that it's well suited to night-time use.

The cleanser provides a very gentle exfoliation thanks to tiny particles & magnesium oxide (which the packaging states is a key ingredient in microdermabrasion). I personally liked that it didn't feel harsh on the skin but if you're hoping for an abrasive scrub, this won't be for you.

Time Bomb Take-Off Time Cleansing Cream rinsed away easily, without any residue and worked well to remove my face makeup. My skin didn't feel tight or stripped following use. Despite containing shea butter, I didn't experience any issues when using this on my acne prone skin.

As it's not suitable for use around the eye area, a separate eye makeup remover is needed- which I found a little tiresome as I prefer my cleanser to be an all in one. This is one of the predominant reasons why I wouldn't repurchase. It does the job as a cleanser and would be well suited to the target market of those with mature skin. It isn't a bad cleanser but nor is it anything special and for this reason, I feel that the price tag of £15 for 125ml is reasonable.

Tuesday 11 August 2015

Speed Review: Clynol Hair Expert Clear Cleansing Shampoo

I'd previously steered clear of clarifying shampoos, fearing that they would "strip" my hair and irritate my sensitive scalp. However, I've been using Clynol Hair Expert Clear Cleansing Shampoo for a number of months now and have been so impressed with the results that it has become an integral part of my hair care routine.

Don't be put off by the packaging, which is very minimalist in line with the salon branding and distribution of Clynol. I'd easily pass this by if I saw it on a shelf. Having said that, the plastic bottle is functional with a flip top lid for easy dispensing.

The shampoo has a thick, clear gel formula which produces a generous lather. A little goes a long way meaning that the bottle will last a long time. There's no discernable scent- it simply smells fresh and clean. I like to leave the suds on my hair for a minute or so before rinsing out, which it does easily.

I can't speak for everyone but Clynol Hair Expert Clear Cleansing Shampoo hasn't irritated my sensitive scalp at all. It simply leaves my hair feeling clean and free of build up.

Clynol Hair Expert Clear Cleansing Shampoo has completely reversed the way I perceive clarifying shampoos. I'm highly impressed and would recommend this.

Sunday 9 August 2015

Speed Review: Amie Morning Light Hydrating Daily Moisturiser

I've previously reviewed skincare from the brand, Amie (click here to read) and remember being impressed at the affordable yet gentle products which are aimed at teenage skin. Whilst I may not be in the target demographic, I've recently revisited the brand and have been trialling Morning Light Hydrating Daily Moisturiser. The moisturiser contains rose extract, rose hip oil and mallow & is designed to keep even sensitive skin types soft, hydrated and nourished all day.

On first impressions, I liked the packaging- a pale pink, matte tube with a cute but not saccharine design which I suspect would appeal to the target audience. I liked that the name of the product is sufficiently descriptive as to make it clear how it's intended to be used. What's more, the tube is functional for use.

Amie Morning Light Hydrating Daily Moisturiser has a gel cream texture and a pleasant, delicate floral scent which I didn't find overpowering. I didn't find it to be the easiest product to absorb into my skin but having said that, a little goes a long way, although it doesn't feel heavy on the skin. It dried to a non-greasy finish and I was pleased to note that it worked well as a base under makeup.

Following use, my skin was left looking plumped and feeling soft & hydrated. This feeling lasted all day.

Personally, I prefer my daily moisturiser to contain sun protection so for that reason alone, I'd be unlikely to repurchase Amie Morning Light Hydrating Daily Moisturiser. However, at just £4.95 for 100ml, I feel that it delivers on the claims. It's a good affordable option which I feel would benefit a range of skin types, particularly combination.
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