01 November 2014

Yours Truly Organics skincare: a really nice surprise

Yours Truly Organics has only been launched a few months ago in UK and I already read many great reviews about it. This organic cruelty-free and Ecocert certified face beauty range was created after the founder Kelita suffers from toubled skin for many years. She wanted to tackle the problem serioulsy and she decided to create a natural beauty solution which resulted in this 4 steps skincare routine. My skin type is combination type and I was more that happy to try this range.


Take it away cleanser (£22 for 120ml)
This quite vibrant orange gel foams easily when you add a bit of water and has been one of my favorite products from the line. Enriched in skin-loving sunflower and jojoba oils, my skin feels really cleansed and fresh after. This is really the type of cleanser I like to use in the morning (but also in the evening to remove daily impurities and make-up) because it is effective yet gentle and quick. The gel features  colorful and anti-oxidant Annatto extract and healing Sandalwood essential oil that promote radiance and glow.

Balancing toner (£19 for 100ml)
This one has been my best friend for a good 3 months now. It does an excellent job in toning and balancing the cleansed face. The combination of naturally astringent Witch hazel flower water with glycerin and Oat extract helps to reveal a clearer skin without the dryness. The serum contains Pentavitin, a unique moisturising complex that provides intense skin hydration. As an overall, I really love the performance. The only drawback of this product is that my skin sounds a little bit sticky after application. Because of this sensation, I prefer using it exclusively in my evening skincare routine.


Fix me up repairing serum (£28 for 30ml)
If you are looking for a serum that can soothe and calm irritated skin while helping the cell regeneration process, this one is the one. This light clear and yellow potent serum glides easily on the skin to smoothe away imperfections and repair the skin. The Gatuline Skin-repair Bio present in the serum is proven to restore skin and encourages cell reparation processes.
Exclusively part of my skincare evening routine too, it works really well with the other products. Again, a winner for me!

Face base face balm (£25 for 100ml)
This pot contains a marvellous cream (rather than oil-based balm as the name would suggest) that smells absolutely divine. The scent is really unique and actually very relaxing. The cream does a really great job at moisturising, thanks to the skin-loving oils and butters it contains. I noticed as well the presence of firming pea extract, soothing concumber extract and brightening Daisy flower extract. I think this base is ideal to use when the weather is not too hot, as it tends to feel a tad too heavy for me.

As an overall, Yours Truly Organics has been a really pleasant surprise. I really like the products, the concept, but I mainly adore the results!

There is one thing in my opinion that may let down the range: the plastic packaging which looks cheap, considering the price point of the line. The good news is that Kelita has announced me that she is working on a complete packaging make-over. Check out the website to discover the new prices/product design!

Have you tried Yours Truly Organics? what are your thoughts?


27 October 2014

So smooth skin: R.L. linden & Co sugar scrub and Lyonsleaf body butter

I am always dreaming of a smooth skin. And sometimes, dreams come true…with a little help of course. Ok, let me detail you a bit more now two of the bodycare products I have been using lately.

If you are following me, you all know that I have quite a (big!) soft spot for the R.L. linden & Co beauty range and included in their latest lovely summer edition I received this summer was the really appealing Lemon and Petitgrain sugar scrub.


R.L. linden & Co Lemon + Petitgrain Enzyme sugar Scrub
This wonderfully vegan body scrub is (hand) made of very simple yet effective blend of sugar and soothing coconut oil. The beautiful fresh and invigorating scent is due to the presence of Lemon and Petitgrain essential oils. Subtil and floral Petitgrain is reknown for its healing and regenerative properties whereas antiseptic Lemon brings some zest and punch to formula.You just need to apply a small amount, to rub in circular motions (insist on dry areas) and rinse to get a skin amazingly silky smooth and radiant. It also contains Aloe vera gel which is an exceptionnal beauty ingredient for its   moisturising benefits. The formula is simple but works really well. Skin is velvety soft minus any oil residue.
This scrub was part of the limited edition summer box in addition with the gorgeous Whole Lotta Roses Probiotic mask (read my review here).

Price: part of the summer box.
Composition: turbinado sugar, Aloe vera gel, fractionated coconut oil, essential oils of Lemon and Petit grain.

The other brand that I have been really delighted to try is Lyonsleaf, a newly upcoming british natural skincare company. After exchanging a few emails, the owner Vicky kindly sent me a body butter to try.


Lyonsleaf Body Butter 
The generous tinted brown glass pot contains a really lovely treat for the body. Absolutely divinely nourishing, the creamy body butter helps to treat any little body skin problems you may have experienced: dryness, rough skin,  lack of elasticity. The texture is amazingly divine as a small amount of butter is enough to bring back softness and radiance. I am a massive fan of Shea butter as this wonderful healing ingredient originated from Africa is just in itself a pure beauty wonder. Hand-blended to a few repairing cold-pressed plants oil such as Avocado and sweet Almond, this body butter achieves a really high standard in regards to formula. It also features Calendula flower extract, a highly healing and anti-inflammatory component very rich in anti-oxidants. A top favorite bodycare product of mine!

Price: £12.95 for 110ml
Composition: Butyrospermum parkii (organic raw shea butter), Cocos nucifera (cold pressed organic coconut oil), Persea americana (organic cold pressed avocado oil), Prunus amygdalus dulcis (cold pressed sweet almond oil), tocopherol (natural Vitamin E), styrax benzoin (benzoin resin), Salvia sclera (clary sage essential oil), Pelargonium graveolens (geranium essential oil), Piper nigrum (blackpepper essential oil), Calendula officinalis (Calendula flower extract), citral, geraniol, benzyl benzoate, benzyl cinnamate, limonene, linolool.


...This duo has been amazing as it has giving me a ultra-soft baby skin.

My bodycare routine is really simple and the whole experience with this lovely duo is definetely worth it. A perfect excuse for some home "Me time"!

What do you think? Have your tried both brands?


20 October 2014

My asian facial toner: Chidoriya Peach Moon Water

Let me introduce you my little beauty treasure of the moment: the Chidoriya Peach Moon water.
I have discovered this herbal toner while browsing online a while ago and got really tempted! I am a very big fan of toners in general and rarely do without one. Although I have written about my love for the Rose water, I decided to expend my area of testing to the Japanese beauty world of Chidoriya.
Fall season is almost on and when I bought this toner, I had a firm intention to find one really effective  that acts a bit as a skin booster. So... is Chidoriya Peach Moon water worth the purchase?


Product name: Peach Moon Water
Certified: no
Texture: liquid
For: all skin types
Price: 31$ for 120ml

My opinion

This pure herbal toner has been part of my skincare routine lately. The  medicinal plant that is used to make this hydrosol is called Shell Ginger and has been widely used in the Japanese herbal medicine. Quite unique and exotic, this toner carries the lovely ginger aroma. Fan of ginger or not, you are more than likely to enjoy the warm yet subtle and pleasant scent!

Also named Alpinia Zerumbet, Shell Ginger is a traditional plant from Japan and reknown for its potent anti-inflammatory benefits. Sheel Ginger is said to be wonderfully healing and regenerative due to the exceptional concentration of bioactives and anti-oxidants. Alcohol-free, this rejuvenating hydrosol is preserved with grapefruit seed extract. This preservative can be controversial depending on the method of extraction. The ingredient list does not specify the compound used for the extract. So in that case, I am not really able to comment too much on it.
Talking about the packaging design, well... I  love it! The perky green bottle is really cute and brings a certain edginess and fun to my beauty cabinet. My only wish would be to have a spray dispenser rather than a standard bottle opening -this would help much better to control the debit of the toner (as lot of product gets lost and absorb in the pad).

During my cleansing routine, I apply (or try to apply) a tiny amount on an organic cotton pad and smooth over my face (in the morning or in the evening or both depending on my skin needs). It is really refreshing. The effects on my skin have been really promising so far: my face is more radiant and unified, presents less irregularities, and is just really soft. My skin is also perfectly primes for moisturiser, oil or serum treatment.

Chidoriya Peach Moon Water is a pricey toner, no doubt. However, it could become my perfect mid-season toner - it ensures a real nice skin glow and that is a key feature for me. I would probably recommend to use it more as a cure and as a really special treat rather than as a daily basic toner. I can't wait to try more of Chidoriya (yes, I have already bought another product that I will review it soon, so stay tuned).
So…is it worth the purchase? I would definitely say: Yes!

++ unique scent and great results
- pricey and no spray

My overal rating: 9/10

Product composition: Alpinia Zerumbet (Shell ginger) hydrosol, Grapefruit seed extract.


What do you think of Chidoriya toner? fancy to try it?



12 October 2014

Yes to Tomatoes Volumizing shampoo

If there is one thing that always need to look clean, shiny and healthy, then it's my hair. I have long chatain curlish hair: they are easy manageable I would say, easy to tie up in a chignon or leave it loose. I do not straighten my hair (no time and not too good for your hair either), and I like it that way…perhaps I stick to my natural look french beauty routine too!
Shampoos have a very important place in my bathroom. I have tried a lot and thought I would give my thoughts of one of them: Yes to Tomatoes Voluminizing shampoo.


Product name: Yes to Tomato Voluminizing shampoo
For: fine or long hair
Texture: light and creamy
Certified: no
Presentation: Bottle (big!)
Price: 9€ for 500ml

My opinion

This is my first tried and tested session for the Yes to brand. I actually bought it impulsively, also driven by the relative affordable price, but I was very happy to give it a go!
I'm not sure if you are like me, but one of my main shampoo expectations is to deliver clean scalp,  volume and shine to my hair. Aimed at long hair and named voluminizing shampoo, I think I could not go wrong with this one. It really defines and describes my hair type.
Looking closer at the content, the formulation is not bad at all. Enriched with some lovely hair loving fruit extracts and a blend of plant oils to nourish and soothe hair locks, the SLS-free formula of this shampoo seems quite impressive. The detergents selected are mild and gentle and are effective at cleansing away dirt and impurities.
Wondering about my experience?…Helas, the shampoo does not entirely work for me. Although it lathers really well and does a great job at cleansing, the results 2 days post-shampoo are just disappointing: my curly hair looks rather flat and also feels greasy. I have tried to use less product per usage or have tried to carefully double rinse but this did not improve the results.
Remember that shampoos are quite personal such as skincare and routine. I am not saying that this shampoo would not work on other hair type. It may, but it was definitely not my best haircare product.

….a disppointing performance!

My overal rating: 5/10

Composition: water (aqua), sodium coco-sulfate, decyl glucoside, lauryl glucosyl, dead sea water (maris aqua), glyceryl stearate SE, solanum lycopersicum (tomato) fruit extract, citrillys vulgaris (watermelon) fruit extract, chenopodium quinoa flower/leaf extract, ganoderma lucidum (mushroom) extract, prunus persicus nectarina fruit (nectarine) extract, capsicum annunm extract, aloe barbadensis leaf juice (aloe vera), olea europaea (olive) fruit oil, prunus amygdalus dulcis (sweet almond) oil, simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) seed oil, spirulina maxima extract, camellia sinensis leaf (green tea) extract, algae extract, ginkgo biloba extract, punica granatum extract, xanthun gum, citric acid, fragance (parfum), sodium benzoate, potassium sorbate

PS: While writing this review, I did try another shampoo from the range (I wanted to give another chance to Yes) And surprise surprise, the Nourishing shampoo Yes to Carrots has been a real winner! It gives me the healthy and voluminous locks that I have been dreaming on.

What do you think? Have you used Yes to Shampoos?


05 October 2014

R.L. linden & Co Whole Lotta Roses probiotic mask

The best beauty advice for a healthy and smooth looking skin is to do regular home face treatments: a face exfoliation follow-up with a mask - a once/week pampering session!
During the summer, I was (once again) extremely excited when R.L. linden & Co sent me a beautiful package: their " Limited Edition seasonal summer box". An absolutely lovely parcel which contains many goodies, including the Whole Lotta Roses probiotic mask. I will review some of the other products in another post soon.


Product name: Whole Lotta Roses Probiotic mask
For: any skin tips
Texture: powder
Certified: no
Contenance: 30g

My opinion

The small glass pot is not even open and the wonderful and magical scent of the aromatic fresh floral blend of Rose discretly escapes the container and brings all senses into a very much welcome "relax" state. The expert ladies behind the brand, Lynn and Robin have done it again (remember my enthousiasm for the the Thousand Petals Beautifying mist): a magical scented mask!

The dark rose colour of the Whole Lotta Roses probiotic mask is stunning. This facial mask features a blend of excellent natural powders that have been recognized to soften and normalize the skin. To start, the main ingredient Pink clay helps to draw out impurities and clarify the skin (this clay type is really gentle for sensitive skins). Then you have the Yogurt powder which contains lots of proteins, but its main action is to gently exfoliate without irritating thanks to the lactic acid. Rich in vitamins and acids, the strawberry powder delicately refines the skin and leave it silky smooth. Also packed with Vitamin C- rich Rosehip and Rose powder, this mask stimulates cell renewal and really freshens-up any dull/tired looking skins. And for the final touch, a touch of honey that nurtures and moisturises the skin. What a brillant beauty concoction!

But the main question is: does the Whole Lotta Roses probiotic mask, with all its great ingedients live up to expectation and perform? And the answer is YES!
I love using it every week. My favorite way (aka the best results oberved) is when I mix 1/2 teaspoon of the probiotic mask with one teaspoon of organic Acacia honey. I apply it for 20 min (rarely more). I experience a slighty warm and tingling sensation on the skin but nothing really dramatic. Once timing is over, I then rinse away by massaging the face with lukewarm water: the tiny grains (perhaps from Rosehip) gently encourage the exfoliation process…and my skin is so smooth! I gently pat dry and quickly spray a bit of Jonzac thermal water. I have been repeating this ritual over the past couple of months and I am delighted with the results.
Although this mask was part of the limited eddition summer box, I really hope it will become a standard because it really deserves a permament place on the R.L. linden & Co shelves.

++ aroma and performance
- struggling to find any really

My overal rating: 9/10

Composition: Pink clay, rose powder, strawberry powder, yogurt powder, rosehip powder, honey powder, proprietary essential oil blend including Rose centefolia, Rose geranium & Linden flower essential oils.

What do you think? Have you tried it?


28 September 2014

My little Acure Organics collection

If there is one US natural beauty brand that stands out for me, I would definitely say it is Acure Organics. I have been in love with their wonderfully soothing Argan oil  and their Cell stimulating face mask and after these excellent experiences, I thought I would get my hands on other products from the range.


Eye cream Chorella + Edleweiss stem cells
My dreams (almost) come true with this little pot of magical cream. This ultra-fast absorbing and soothing light cream brings a layer of comfort to the eye area. It repairs, it soothes, it calms and prevents any signs of premature ageing. Completely packed with ultra-repairing botanical oils, this eye cream also features some great actives known for their anti-puffiness and decongestionning properties.The little pot I bought a while ago (repackaged in a tube recently) is almost done: I have been faithful to it for at least 6 months or so. Every evening I really gently massage the eye area from the outer to the inner part in order stimulate lymphatic drainage. The scent itself is quite neutral but I do not mind.

Day cream Gotu kola stem cell + 1% Chorella growth factor
While end of summer is quickly approaching (but still lots of sunshine here in Amsterdam!), this moisturising cream is perfect if you are looking for something a little richer to use during the Fall season. The brilliant formula is spot on: plenty of gorgeous organic botanical oils, extracts and nutrients to nurture your face and it makes an ideal base before make-up.
I do not use this cream daily but only when my skin feels a bit too much dehydrated. As you may know, I am not that keen on having a "greasy" face, but I have no problems with this one. It leaves the skin perfectly smooth and matte. Thanks to healing Gotu kola stem cells and chorella extract, the cream has also great regenerative properties.

Night cream Argan stem cell + 2% Chorella growth factor
Whether or not you are a fan of night face oil or not, you may want to consider giving this little wonder a try. Packed with antioxidants (Curoxidant signature blend unique to Acure Organics) and skin repairing Argan stem cell extract, I am absolutely in love with this cream. The texture is superb and the effects are amazing. I like to apply it every time my skin feels a little stressed or is lacking the morning "glow". The next day, your skin feels ultra-soft (almost like a baby skin), repaired and very healthy.
In one word, it delivers…! Highly recommended.

Facial serum
Brand new and not tested yet! So stay tuned.

Just like before, my enthousiasm and love for Acure Organics is stronger thant ever. I am really keen to discover more and more their range!

Have you tried Acure Organics? what is your favourite product?



22 September 2014

Bodhiluxe: my feature on French beauty

Bodhiluxe is absolutely stunning online magazine featuring everything G r e e n, L u X e, sustainable, from Food to Beauty to Lifestyle to Home….Big applause to Elijah founder of Bodhiluxe and the eco-luxe english beauty brand Bodhi & Birch and Gemma from buff beauty also editor of Bodhiluxe for their amazing job.

I had the privilege to write a post "the truth behind French beauty" on Bodhiluxe. Enjoy it here.


21 September 2014

Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish

As you all may know, face cleansing is one of my favorite parts in my beauty routine. It is such an important step that I am always keen to spend lots of time hunting for the "perfect face cleanser" (if one exists!). I already reviewed a few cleansers on this blog and I love this one and this one, so can Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish stands up the competition?


Product name: Cleanse & Polish Liz Earle
Certified: no
For: all skin types
Texture: white cream
Price: £14.75 for 100ml +2 muslin cloths

My opinion

The Cleanse & Polish hot cloth cleanser is one of the top beauty products from the English skincare brand elaborated by Liz Earle. It is such an icon amongst (green and classical) beauty bloggers that I could not resist to trying it!
Although it is end of summer, I really wanted to experience a creamy cleanser during hotter days and figure out whether I would still enjoy it (or not!). I have a tendency to like the "splashy and fresh feeling" of cold water rinse for face cleansing but yet, I have decided to give a try to some more nurturing cleansing methods.
  Housed in a really nice and clean-cut blue bottle, the cleanser comes as a rich waxy cream that reminds me a bit of a really thick whipped creme fraiche. One pump delivers the right amount of product needed for one cleansing application. So far, great start! The system is handy, hygienic and perfect if you have to travel, so you don't have to worry about product leaking.
   I use mainly the Cleanse & Polish in the evening, massage it all over the face, insist on the make-up area that needs more attention and then wipe it off a few times with the provided muslin square damped in hot water (aka "hot cloth cleansing"). I tend to avoid the eye area as I prefer to use a specific natural eye remover.
  The scent of this cleanser is lovely. I am a huge fan of invigorating scent and Eucalyptus aroma really seems to adequately deliver the sensation of "freshness" that I am looking for. Infused with Rosemary and Chamomille essential oils, known for their antiseptic properties and enriched in moisturising Cocoa butter, the cleanser is really gentle and does a great job. My skin is left cleansed and soft.

However, as much as I would like to like it, I don't have the "whow" factor. Not sure why. I guess my expectations were maybe too high. Or perhaps I am just missing my Konjac sponge when using the Cleanse and Polish? Or am I still secretly in love with the Aurelia Miracle cleanser? Who knows…

  Lastly, I would like to draw your attention to the composition of this product. If you look at the ingredient list, you will notice the presence of some "not so green" ingredients, such as propylene glycol (used as a plant extraction medium), phenoxyethanol (used as a preservative), and polysorbate 60 (used as an emulsifier). I do think these compounds could easily be replaced by more natural and skin beneficial alternatives. So this choice of formulation is a bit a let-down for me, especially coming from a "naturally skincare company".

++ packaging and texture
- ingredients not 100%natural

My overal rating: 6.5/10

Composition: aqua (water), caprylic/capric triglyceride, Theobroma (cacao) seed butter, cetearyl alcohol, cetyl esters, sorbitan stearate, polysorbate 60, glycerin, cera alaba (beeswax),  propylene glycol, Humulus lupulus (hops) extract, panthenol, Rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary) extract,  Anthemis nobilis (chamomille) extract, Eucalyptus globulus (eucalyptus) oil, limonene, citric acid, phemoxyethanol, benzoic acid, ethylhexylglycerin, dehydroacetic acid, polyaminopropyl biguanide.


Have you used the Cleanse & Polish? What do you think?



14 September 2014

My skin boost of hydration: Jonzac thermal water spray

If you are a fan of French beauty brands (read my post about where to natural beauty shop in France; I also talked about french products here and here and here and here), then you may be really familiar with the pharmacy-type brands La Roche Posay, Avene, Vichy…They all evolve around a one key ingredient: the thermal spring water.


So today I want to introduce you another French brand that became one of my favorites this summer. Also because it is the likely reason why my skin feels and looks so healthy recently. It is called the Jonzac thermal water.

For those who don't know, the thermal spring water is known for its therapeutic and skin curative properties, which have been accredited by the French Academy of Medicine. Please notice that not every beauty facial spray with "water" can be easily recognised as such, so read the labels when you purchased a face mist. Starting as hot water (hence "thermal") at a stunning 1850m of depth and after being filtered through the massive rocks, the natural mineral water from Jonzac becomes a soothing, pure and perfectly mineralised end product.
Its unique, rich and preserved content makes it suitable to any types of skin, particulary the ones prone to redness and inflammation. The good proportion of zinc helps skin healing and soothing. The cell regeneration processes are boosted, which helps the skin to look more radiant and moisturised.

I have been using Jonzac thermal water for a couple of months now, mainly after face cleansing. The spray allows a fine dispersion. I often wait a couple of minutes before gently pat dry. Then I nicely prepare my skin to receive the night serum/oil or my morning moisturiser. It can complement very nicely the toner actions too. In 3 words, I like it!

Retailing at a very affordable price (around 7€ for 200ml) and also available in a travel format as well, Jonzac thermal water is an excellent beauty staple in anyone's skincare routine.

….awesome to any thirsty skins!

What do you think? Have you already incorporated the thermal water in your beauty routine?


31 August 2014

French beauty brands from the mountains...

The Alps form a magnificent and breathtaking natural spectacle - the white mountains, the pine tree forests, the green grass fields with grazing cows, stunning waterfalls, wild flowers (arnica, gentiane…) growing happily in high altitudes... and so on so forth. It is an obvious proof of what nature has to offer - wild, fresh and pure.


Spending my holidays there, on the French side of the Alps, I thought I would share with you a few french beauty brands (or products) that have been inspired/created by the mountains.

The first one is Pure altitude, a luxury beauty line. Originally it was exclusively created for  "Les fermes de Marie", a famous spa in the rich village of Megeve, but now can be found in other places and shops too. Edelweiss being their signature ingredient, Pure altitude combines efficacy, pleasure and well-being. For those who don't know, Edelweiss is a rare mountain white flower that only grow in an immaculate environnment. Its anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties are particularly appealing to sensitive and ageing skins.
The brand features 3 different skincare lines which one of them is certified organic by Ecocert.  If you are more interested in bodycare products, then check their wonderful body beauty oil or body scrub which sounds both really divine!


The second brand I would like to mention has been created by "Les thermes de St Gervais" and offers a range of skincare products featuring unique thermal water that originates from the privileged settings of the Mont-Blanc. Although all the products (helas!) are not 100% natural, I essentially want to focus here on the benefits of the thermal water used in the formula and which is (luckily!) available as a water spray on its own. This unique, pure, and isotonic water offers excellent therapeutical properties due to its exceptionnal composition: highly mineralised and rich in oligo-elements. St Gervais thermal water is often recommended by dermatologues when you suffer from skin conditions such as exczema, psioriasis or acne. Not only St Gervais water helps to promote wound healing, but its anti-inflammatory qualities are amazing too. It is a bit less well-known than Avene or La Roche-Posay but worth a look. I will soon dedicate a future post to all the (great) thermal waters sprays you can get in France and why we (I!) are all crazy about them.

The final brand I would like to mention is Huiles et Baumes, a French company that offers their own range of skincare/bodycare plus a plethora of raw plant oils, essential oils and much more. The Ecocert certified line features alpine pure spring water in all of their product formulation. Based in Annecy (if you have not been to this truly beautiful lake in between amazing mountains, then you are missing something), this line is mainly aimed at sensitive and dehydrated skins. Most of the products feature Activalps, a skin protective and calming complex made of eldelweis, genepi and arnica extracts. If you are a beauty oil and balms lover, then you may be tempted by their lovely SOS alpine balm or their lovely collection of 100% pure plant oils. All in all, worth a look!

Any questions or comments? let me know!