A’kin Sensitive Calming Day & Night Cream

Hi there! Today’s post is about this A’kin Sensitive Calming Day & Night Cream. This face cream doesn’t contain sulfates, parabens, silicones, ethoxylated cleansers, PEGs, phthalates, mineral oil, synthetic fragrances, artificial colours and animal derivatives. According to the manufacturer, this face cream is vegan and cruelty-free. 😍

This face cream promises to nourish the skin and to enhance the skin’s appearance. Infused with chamomile, shea butter and vitamin E, this face cream also promises long lasting hydration that leaves even the most delicate skin feeling great.

I’ve been using this moisturiser on and off for a few weeks, and I don’t like it. Its not necessarily a bad product, but it’s just definitely not right for me. And here’s why. First of all, this moisturiser has a strong scent that reminds me of a kale-based skin care line that I tried (and hated) a long time ago. The scent is definitely botanical, but it’s not the most suitable scent for a cosmetic product.

Then there’s the formula. This face cream leaves white marks all over the face unless you go over it again and again. I would say that it takes about 15 swipes to work the white stuff into my skin. The formula feels overly rich, but it doesn’t seem to penetrate the skin. It just sits on top of the dry patches. Weird.

Lastly, this face cream doesn’t play nice with my foundation. It makes my foundation ball up. I tried to give it longer to absorb, but it didn’t work. I tried extra facial oil – but using facial oil in addition to a rich moisturiser AND an oil-based foundation is just ridiculous.

I think I will continue to use this face cream as a night cream. But since its richness appears to be superficial, I need to dig up the facial oil again. If you’re interested, A’kin Sensitive Calming Day & Night Cream is available as 50ml. The RRP is £24 but I paid £3 (TK Maxx).

Mrs Strawberry Blonde 💙💛

100% Vegan & Cruelty-Free – Marks & Spencer Water Jasmine Eau De Toilette

Hi there! Today’s post is about this Marks & Spencer Water Jasmine Eau De Toilette. I’ve previously given this fragrance a quick review. So I could have written today’s post under the “Revisiting Old Favourites” tag. But the heading just didn’t look right. And this fragrance deserves its own stand-alone review.

Anyhoo, back to this fragrance! The notes for Water Jasmine are citrus (top note), jasmine and rose florals (heart note), and soft musk, cedar and amber (base note). Sounds fresh and summery! 😍

What’s this fragrance like? It’s a burst of citrus freshness. It’s like Light Blue – but Light Green. I am in love with the fresh and unisex citrus aroma and the transparent shades of jasmine. This fragrance is a delight, not just on hot days. I’m glad I bought 2 big 100ml bottles which I know I’ll enjoy!

I cannot recommend this beautiful fragrance enough. If you’re interested, Marks & Spencer Water Jasmine Eau De Toilette is available as 30ml for £5 and 100ml for £9.50. Also, this fragrance is vegan and certified cruelty-free (it carries THE Leaping Bunny logo).

Mrs Strawberry Blonde 💙💛

Botanical Lab Neem Leaf + Salicylic Acid Anti-Blemish Gentle Face Wash

Hi there! Today’s post is about this Botanical Lab Neem Leaf + Salicylic Acid Anti-Blemish Gentle Face Wash.

This face wash promises to cleanse the skin effectively and to remove impurities and make-up. It’s aimed at people with oily or blemish-prone skin as it’s meant to help reduce breakouts. The formula also contains allantoin and aloe vera which are said to help soothe and hydrate the skin.

I’ve only started to use this face wash about 3 weeks ago, but within 2 days I already knew that it’s so much better than any other in-the-shower facial cleanser I’ve used for a long time. It’s absolutely amazing at removing make-up residue! Alright, let me tell you about my evening routine.

In the evening, I usually use a cleansing cream type of product to dissolve and remove most of my make-up. Immediately after that, I take a shower, and I use a regular face wash to cleanse my face, to remove what’s left of my make-up, and to get rid of the cleansing cream residue.

The final step of my cleansing routine is going over my face with a cotton wool pad drenched in toner – which usually catches quite a bit of beige and grey.

Since I’ve been using this face wash, the toner-drenched cotton wool pad remains almost perfectly clean. I tried 4 different toners, and the results is the same with every single one of them. Using this face wash twice a day has made a huge difference to how clean and clear my face looks and feels. It’s incredible considering this is such a gentle product.

Based on my experience, I’d recommend this face wash to everyone, even people with dry or moody skin types (my skin is very dry and unpredictably moody). But as always, just make sure you’re not allergic to any of the ingredients and do a patch test before use.

If you’re interested, Botanical Lab Neem Leaf + Salicylic Acid Anti-Blemish Gentle Face Wash is available as 150ml for £4. I paid £2 (special offer with Tesco Clubcard). Oh, and according to the manufacturer, this product is vegan! 😍

Mrs Strawberry Blonde 💙💛

100% Cruelty-Free – Morrisons Revive Pink Grapefruit & Basil Extracts Shower Gel, Morrisons Nourish Shea Butter & Honey Extracts Shower Cream

Hi there! Today’s post is about Morrisons Revive Pink Grapefruit & Basil Extracts Shower Gel and Morrisons Nourish Shea Butter & Honey Extracts Shower Cream. I’m not really a Morrisons shopper, but when I swung by Morrisons the other day, I picked up these 2 shower gels. I’ve already given them a try, and here’s what I think.

Morrisons Revive Pink Grapefruit & Basil Extracts Shower Gel was a bit of a disappointment. It smells nice and fresh from the bottle, but it hardly smells of anything as soon as it’s out of the bottle. It also doesn’t produce much of a lather, and it doesn’t make me feel as clean as I’d like to feel. I’m only using this shower gel in the morning because I don’t think it’s good enough for evening use after a long (and potentially sweaty) day. On a positive note, this shower gel is suitable for vegans.

Morrisons Nourish Shea Butter & Honey Extracts Shower Cream isn’t nice. I tried it, and didn’t like it. Tried it once more… still didn’t like it. This shower gel smells very sugary; fragrance-wise there’s not much honey or shea butter. It also doesn’t really lather up – it’s just not great. I’ll be squeezing this one into the hand wash dispenser in the kitchen.

I’m not impressed with these shower gels, and I won’t be rushing out to try more. If you’re interested, Morrisons Revive Pink Grapefruit & Basil Extracts Shower Gel and Morrisons Nourish Shea Butter & Honey Extracts Shower Cream are available as 250ml for 95p (although they were 90p when I bought them 2 weeks ago). Both shower gels are certified cruelty-free as they carry THE Leaping Bunny logo!

Mrs Strawberry Blonde 💙💛

Essano Rosehip Visible Lift Eye Crème

Hi there! Today’s post is about this Essano Rosehip Visible Lift Eye Crème for all skin types. This eye cream contains shea butter, rosehip and seed jojoba oils, vitamins A, B3 (Niacinamide) and E, as well as pro-vitamin B5. The packaging states that over 97% of the ingredients are of natural origin.

This eye cream promises what most eye creams promise. It says it will soften and smooth fine lines and wrinkles, firm the skin for a visible lift, even out the skin tone and restore a youthful glow. Use it like any other eye cream = simply dab a small amount around the eye contour area.

I’ve been using this eye cream for over a month now, and I think it’s quite alright. It’s a lot better than the eye gel I used before. This eye cream feels rich and nourishing, but it’s not greasy. I haven’t seen any actual youthful glow or a visible lift, but I like the hydration I’m getting from this eye cream. One thing though – this eye cream could smell better! It smells a bit like furniture polish. Fortunately, the scent isn’t strong, and it doesn’t linger.

In any event, I’m happy to continue to use this product. If you’re interested, Essano Rosehip Visible Lift Eye Crème is available as 15ml. I paid a ridiculous £3 (TK Maxx). On another note, according to the manufacturer, this eye cream is vegan and cruelty-free! 😍

Mrs Strawberry Blonde 💙💛

100% Vegan & Cruelty-Free – Superdrug Layering Lab Sweetie Body Mist, Superdrug Layering Lab Oriental Body Mist

Hi there! Today’s post is about Superdrug Layering Lab Sweetie Body Mist and Superdrug Layering Lab Oriental Body Mist. Most of Superdrug’s Layering Lab body mists happen to smell like expensive fragrances. Their Blossom body mist smells like Alien, and their Paradise body mist is pretty close to Olympéa! Now let’s see if Sweetie and Oriental are just as nice.

Superdrug Layering Lab Sweetie Body Mist is supposed to smell like Jean Paul Gaultier La Belle. I don’t know this fragrance. And, unfortunately, NONE of the local drugstores or perfumeries stock it, so I couldn’t test it. Having said that, I do like Sweetie!

When you spray it, the first few seconds are difficult as Sweetie is too loud and too sweet, but it settles quickly and turns into a gentle, non-descript floral fragrance. It definitely has a “French” touch to it, but it also has an obvious drugstore aura. The fragrance is nice and office-safe – just don’t spray it immediately before you enter the office as it needs a few moments to calm down.

Superdrug Layering Lab Oriental Body Mist (“spice, berries, floral”) smells sickeningly sweet. Good grief, what is this fragrance? Dupe lists have it as Diesel Loverdose (which I dislike). But I think it actually smells like Diesel Loverdose Tattoo (which I also dislike), with Britney Spears Fantasy (which I strongly dislike) mixed in, all rounded off with a giant load of whatever concoction vanilla-scented dolls are scented with.

Next time I go to the office, I will “forget” the bottle in one of the bathrooms. Someone else will take it with them, no doubt. If you love super sweet fragrances, you might want to give this one a try. But please, do test before you buy!

If you’re interested, Superdrug Layering Lab Sweetie Body Mist and Superdrug Layering Lab Oriental Body Mist are available as 100ml for £3.99. Superdrug runs special offers on the Layering Lab products most of the time which might come in handy if you want to try different products or if you want to stock up on your favourite cheap scent. Also, these body mists are suitable for vegans, and they’re certified cruelty-free (they carry the Leaping Bunny logo).

Mrs Strawberry Blonde 💙💛

100% Vegan & Cruelty-Free – Marks & Spencer Spiced Bergamot Eau De Toilette

Hi there! Today’s post is about this Marks & Spencer Spiced Bergamot Eau De Toilette. This post could be filed under “Revisiting Old Favourites”, but the heading would have been clunky. Regardless, this fragrance is an “old” favourite, and here’s why…

Let’s start with the notes! Spiced Bergamot has the following notes: bergamot, lemon and orange flower (top notes), white flowers and cardamom (heart notes), and cedar, amber and musk (base notes).  Sounds good!

Spiced Bergamot is an amazing fragrance. It’s starts very fresh – with lemon and bergamot. I can’t smell any orange flower or white flowers, but I can smell cedar and musk The fragrance lasts for about 3-4 hours (it’s a skin scent after about 1 hour) and I can sniff out some cardamom as the citrus notes disappear.

This fragrance remind me of Light Blue. It’s definitely NOT the same as Light Blue, but with lemon and cedar being such prominent notes, and with its cool, refreshing and unisex feel, Spiced Bergamot makes you think of Light Blue! Having said this, Spiced Bergamot is definitely “pink”, and it also has a more transparent feel. If you think of Light Blue as lemon and water, you could think of Spiced Bergamot as lemon / bergamot and air.

I cannot recommend this beautiful fragrance enough. If you’re interested, Marks & Spencer Spiced Bergamot Eau De Toilette is available as 30ml for £5 and 100ml for £9.50. I bought a special edition 200ml for £6.25 (half price post-Christmas clearance). Also, this fragrance is vegan and certified cruelty-free (it carries THE Leaping Bunny logo).

Mrs Strawberry Blonde 💙💛

100% Vegan & Cruelty-Free – Primark PS… Revitalising Marine Algae + Hyaluronic Acid Sheet Mask

Hi there! Today’s post is about this Primark PS… Revitalising Marine Algae + Hyaluronic Acid Sheet Mask. This sheet mask also contains pro-vitamin B5 and extracts of aloe vera leaf, watermelon, bilberry, kelp, etc. This mask promises refreshing hydration.

Simply cleanse your face, put the mask on and leave it on for about 15 minutes, then massage the essence into your skin – and that’s already it.

I’ve given this mask a try, and I think it’s nice. I enjoyed the subtle scent – it’s a green and fresh scent that I can’t describe. But it was pleasant. I also found the mask refreshing and hydrating – just as promised. My skin looked and felt great, and I’d give the mask an extra point for not leaving a sticky film on my skin. Great stuff!

Based on my experience, I’d recommend this sheet mask. Primark PS… Revitalising Marine Algae + Hyaluronic Acid Sheet Mask is available as a 23g single-use mask for 80p (Primark). This mask is also certified vegan (by The Vegan Society) and cruelty-free (it carries THE Leaping Bunny logo).

Mrs Strawberry Blonde 💙💛

100% Vegan & Cruelty-Free – Faith In Nature Aloe Vera Hand Made Soap

Hi there! Today’s post is about this Faith In Nature Aloe Vera Hand Made Soap. I don’t think I’ve ever tried any product from this brand, but this soap was on special, and I also saw that this soap is certified vegan (by The Vegan Society) and cruelty-free (it carries the Leaping Bunny logo). So I bought it!

I tried this soap today, and whilst I like it, I don’t love it. The soap is a light green, curved bar soap. It has a classic soap scent with aloe vera mixed in. It lathers up well, and I found it to be cleansing. I would recommend it after a sweaty work-out! However, the soap is drying, and using a body lotion is a must after the shower.

All in all, this is a decent soap. It’s not a favourite, but worth a try if you love bar soaps for the shower. It’s also a good buy if you want to support a vegan and cruelty-free brand! Faith In Nature Aloe Vera Hand Made Soap is available as 100g for about £2.75. I paid £1.50 (special offer).

Mrs Strawberry Blonde 💙💛

100% Vegan & Cruelty-Free – Marks & Spencer Alphabet Personalised Beauty Gift Set

Hi there! Today’s post is about this Marks & Spencer Personalised Beauty Gift Set. They had a few random letters left on sale (half price = £6.25), and I opted for J over X or Q. This gift set contains 3 items – a fragrance, a hand cream and a lip balm. All of these products are vegan and certified cruelty-free – they carry the Leaping Bunny logo!

Let’s start with the fragrance which contains the following notes: red berries, pomegranate and musk. On paper, this doesn’t sound bad. However, this fragrance is the stuff of nightmares. They forgot to list one major ingredient – cloves! I’ve never smelled such a disgusting mess of cloves and overly ripe fruit.

I sprayed it once, smelled it, then I washed my arm and threw my cardie in the washing machine. The stink lingered for hours despite the window being open. I couldn’t and wouldn’t gift this to anyone. This fragrance is rubbish!

Onto the next product, the hand cream! The hand cream smells like an extremely watered-down version of the fragrance. Fortunately, the scent is very weak and fleeting, so it doesn’t stink up the room. The formula is very rich and nourishing. However, after the fragrance nightmare, I wasn’t too keen on the hand cream. So my husband is using it as a foot cream – and it works well.

And here’s item number 3 – the lip balm. This is the surprise of the month! Wow, what a beautiful lip balm! It’s very similar to Boots No 7 Protect & Perfect Lip Care! This beautiful lip balm has a very subtle vanilla scent, it glides on, it’s very lightweight, and it’s incredibly hydrating. I love it! 😍 One of my favourite products this month!

All in all, whilst the lip balm is the absolute bomb, I had to bin the fragrance and I’m also not using the hand cream. I would hope that M&S will bring back the lip balm next Christmas, or that it will be available to buy on its own!

Mrs Strawberry Blonde 💙💛