What: A moisturising day cream
For: All skin types
Review: I’m struggling to know where to start with this review. Do I start by telling you that Natalie Portman is a huge fan of Pai skincare? Or that Pai was the first skin care company to list all ingredients in plain English, so you don’t need a chemistry degree to understand what’s in the bottle? Or that Pai’s skincare line is one of the cleanest out there, certified organic by the Soil Association, with no alcohol, no artificial fragrances, no formaldehyde, no parabens, no petrochemicals, no phthalates, no phenoxyethanol, and no Sodium Lauryl Sulfate?
Based on what Pai doesn’t contain you could be forgiven for thinking that I have been applying some nicely packaged air to my face every morning for the past few weeks, but Pai’s Avocado & Jojoba Hydrating Day Cream is jam packed full of delicious, skin nourishing ingredients. The day cream has done a fantastic job of providing deep moisture to my winter ravaged skin, whilst being balancing enough to leave a lovely silky smooth (totally ungreasy) (that’s definitely not a word but you know what I mean) canvas for makeup. I have incredibly acne prone skin and just looking at a creamy moisturiser will usually break me out, but I have had no breakouts as a result of using Pai and it’s been such a pleasure to use during winter. You only need one pump or so to cover the entire face so a bottle will last forever, and it is only very lightly (naturally) fragranced so it’s also a great unisex moisturiser. It’s not particularly fancy, it just does its job and does it brilliantly!
Clean creds: See above.
Verdict: Highly recommended as an everyday moisturiser to provide hydration and restore skin to its natural balance. Makeup sits very nicely on top so it’s a great primer too!
Pai Buy it here
Pai Avocado & Jojoba Hydrating Day Cream was sent to me for my honest review.
What: A hydrating, replenishing, nourishing serum to use once a day under moisturiser.
For: Dry, damaged skin, or skin that generally needs to perk up.
Review: A sample sachet of Franc Essential serum arrived in my letterbox when my skin was supremely dehydrated, breaking out from late nights and stress, and generally looking pretty awful. I was skeptical when I read of the serum’s promise to “bring new life to skin”, because I thought anything that would take care of the dullness and dryness would be too rich for my acne prone skin. But Franc proved me wrong. From the moment I applied it, my skin felt so nourished and and instantly got the ‘glow’ back - and it looked great under makeup. It has a gorgeous sandalwood scent that I found really comforting, especially for cold winter nights, but I think it would also be great to apply to hot sun-exposed skin at the end of a day at the beach. I used a few drops every morning and night for about 2 weeks (a little goes a long way), and the serum took care of the dryness and generally awfulness of my skin, and to my surprise sped up the healing of my spots and no new ones appeared while I was testing it. I was very upset when my little packet of Franc ran out because it was just such a lovely all round serum! Maybe I’ll name my first born after him…
Clean creds: Made from premium natural ingredients, 100% free of sulphate, artificial fragrances and colours, parabens, mineral oils and petrochemicals, thickeners, fillers, foaming or bulking agents and animal derivatives.
Verdict: At $72 (AUD) it’s not cheap, but I think the 50ml bottle would last for ages. I highly recommend the serum - beautiful smelling, hard working, and delivers on its promises!
Buy from here.
What: Hybrid lip colour / lip care.
For: Lips needing a boost of colour, and is especially good for anyone who is a little wary of using traditional lipsticks.
Review: Another BRILLIANT clean offering for lips - I am head over heels for the Lipshine. I was sent the ‘Nudist 5’ colour which is a bright beetroot, just-sucked-on-a-lolly fuschia. Unlike conventional lipsticks, the Lipshine has a slightly sticky, thick balm texture that can be easily layered for greater intensity. Even though it’s a really punchy colour, I find it a lot less scary to wear because of its balm-like texture, as it wears off smoothly and evenly, leaving a lovely hot pink stain on the lips that lasts for hours. It brightens up the face without looking overly ‘lipsticky’ - love it!
Clean creds: 100% natural/organic ingredients with a focus on sustainability.
Verdict: It’s not just puppy love, the Lipshine and I are in a long-term relationship. Highly recommended.
Buy it here
*The Lipshine was sent to me for my honest review.
REVIEW: Ilia Pure Lip Care
What: It’s a balm, it’s a gloss, it’s a lipstick… no, it’s Ilia Pure Lip Care!
For: Care and colour for lips.
Review: I was sent Ilia Pure Lip Care in ‘Nobody’s Baby’ (dusty pink nude), ‘Dizzy’ (melon) and ‘Shell Shock (hot pink) for review and I must admit, I was already sold after reading the accompanying press release. The inspiration behind Ilia Pure Lip Care was to create a connection between organic beauty and fashion, and to ‘re-brand’ organic makeup with new contemporary colours, better packing and product performance. I love that creating something on-trend and high-performing was just as important as the fact that the line was organic, and this concept has delivered a beautiful product in Ilia Pure Lip Care.
It’s hard to precisely describe what the Lip Care is - it feels very nourishing on the lips (to the point where I haven’t worn lip balm for the past week), it has the colour and staying power of a lipstick, and it has the finish of a gloss. Whilst they apply quite sheer, the Lip Cares are easily built up to more intense colour, and although I have found that the glossy sheen wears off after about an hour, the colour itself remains on the lips for quite a while, almost like a lip stain.
Personally I think that the colours are more vibrant than how they appear on the Ilia Lip Care website and have taken some photos to show how they appear once applied (I’ve built then up with a couple of layers to show the intensity of colour that can be created, but bear in mind you can wear them very sheer as just a hint of colour). My pick of the bunch is definitely ‘Shell Shock’, it’s a gorgeous bright pink and it brightens up the face instantly. That said, all the shades are supremely wearable just because you can choose how sheer or intense you can wear the colour, and are easily applied on the run and without a mirror (which is usually the case for me as I have an unhealthy fondness for the snooze function on my alarm clock).
Oh and the most important thing - they smell and taste absolutely delicious, thanks to the orange blossom and jasmine essential oils! Yum!
Clean creds: Made with 85% organic ingredients, free of synthetic preservatives, fillers and petro-chemicals.
Verdict: Lovely lovely lovely lipsticks (lip balms, lip glosses, lip stains…!). Very wearable, and whilst it’s only a small range, I think it’s a good spread of on-trend shades with something to tickle everyone’s fancy.
Buy it online here or here
Love the orange lip trend but too scared to go all the way? Go to first base with a plumping coral lip gloss (this one is Vapour Elixr Plumping Lip Gloss). Seriously satisfying.
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What: Burt’s Bees Replenishing Lip Balm with Pomegranate Oil
For: Chapped lips everywhere
Review: Love love love Burt’s Bees Replenishing Lip Balm. It tastes delicious (which, let’s face it, is probably the best thing about lip balm), nourishes lips, and leaves a gorgeously subtle berry tint on the lips. In fact, I’ve occasionally swiped the lip balm over my cheeks when leaving the office for that ‘I haven’t done a thing all day’ glow. And it lasts FOREVER. No weird gooey mess that you have to mash the lid into.
Verdict: You’d be balm-y not to like it. 10/10.