After my chocolate binge of the Easter weekend my skin looks absolutely awful. It is a mystery to me how I can have dry patches and a rash of plump white heads AT THE SAME TIME. Let alone the wrinkles and sagginess of middle age which I am just about coming to terms with. (Until I win the lottery and invest in a plastic surgeon who can do whatever he/she wants with my face – there must be something, right?)
I was reminded by the wonderful Zinful Blonde in her post ‘How I Cleared my Skin‘ that I really must stop touching my face. I’ve got a bad habit of running my fingers across my top lip. I do this for two reasons. 1) to check for stray hairs – sigh and 2) because once I read somewhere that if you rub along your top lips it helps get rid of those deep vertical grooves caused by too much smoking (in my 20’s). I have no idea if it works, but I have done it for ages and now I’m worried if I stop then something awful will happen.
If I do this upper lip thing and my hands are not spotlessly clean – if I have chocolate on them for example – then it causes a spot break out more suited to a teenager rather than a forty AHEM year old woman.
So. In my road to recovery I have decided if I want to rub my upper lip my hands must be spotlessly clean. So there’s step 1.
Step 2 is to look at some products to get my skin back to its usual middle-aged self, rather than the gunky, dry skin/oily skin nightmare it is at the moment.
This is when I turn to two companies who have produced products I regularly use. Now, if I was a millionaire I would go creme de la mer every time. The few occasions when I bought it, my skin really did look noticeably better. However, I haven’t got that kind of money. So my current skin care programme is an example of cutting my coat according to my cloth.
I have a massive love affair with Liz Earle’s stuff. I once wrote a post in praise of her Superskin body range which is the only cream I have used which tackles that crêpey look of skin as you get older. It’s pricey so I don’t use it all the time – it’s my high days and holidays body cream. Anyway, when I wrote that post, which mentioned a number of companies, only @lizearle at twitter liked and commented on my post, ensuring my loyalty for ever more.
The counter staff are also always lovely and very generous with the free samples. When I was peering into the mirror, heartsick at the state of my skin, I noticed my little bag which had a whole pile of Liz Earle samples which I hadn’t got round to using. Well, dear reader, I tried one thing which, when I saw the effect on my way-too-many-Easter-eggs-eaten-over-Easter-skin I thought, ‘I am going to have to write a blog about this.’
So here is is. This is the posh image from the website, and on the right is my sample bottle which has spent a week or two rattling around the bottom of my make-up bag.
The Liz Earle Gentle Face Exfoliator – you can buy it here – (I don’t get any money at all for this, by the way, this really is just for the love)
Oh my Gosh my skin looked and felt so much better after I’d given it a good scrub with this. Now I’m not saying it made me look like a dewy twenty year old – Ha! I wish – but it took away the grey, lacklustre look I had, and got rid of all the flaky bits of dry skin. It didn’t remove all the white heads I had accumulated – it wasn’t magic – but it did seem to reduce the inflammation and they cleared up quicker than they have done in the past when I didn’t use a product.
Liz Earle’s cleansing products always come provided with a muslin square. Here is a picture of another sample I was given – this time for a face mask,
I was always a bit suspicious of this as I associated it with the muslins I used when the children threw up on me, but have recently started using them and they work really well, making my face feel lovely and clean.
I never ever use soap and water on my skin. If I do, I immediately feel like my face is tightening and tightening into a Sahara-dry drum skin so I avoid it like the plague. However, sometimes it does need a good old clean, and that’s when I get out the Liz Earle Hot Cloth Cleanser ‘Cleanse and Polish‘.
My final recommendation from the Liz Earle range is this from the Superskin collection (I think it’s specifically aimed at mature skin – it certainly does lovely things for mine) Superskin Concentrate for Night.
I don’t use it very often – I tend to forget it’s in my cupboard. This is really annoying as when I do use it my skin looks really nice in the morning.
It’s got all sorts of gorgeous stuff in it and smells completely delicious. What I love about Liz Earle is you don’t get any crap in their products. Look at the ingredients list for this concentrate: ‘Corylus avellana (hazel) seed oil, Rosa rubiginosa (rosehip) seed oil, Argania spinosa (argan) kernel oil, Persea gratissima (avocado) oil, Citrus aurantium amara (neroli) flower oil, Tocopherol (vitamin E), Linalool, Lavandula angustifolia (lavender) oil, Anthemis nobilis (chamomile) flower oil, Limonene, Geraniol, Farnesol.’
Have a look at their philosophy on ingredients.
Enough about Liz Earle. I also want to talk to you about the No 7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Skin stuff.
I don’t know whether you remember, but about ten years ago there was an Horizon documentary where a professor looked into what beauty products actually worked, You can also read this article on the impact the documentary had on the sales of this ‘Protect & Perfect’ range.
You can imagine women queuing up to buy this after Professor Regan proved it actually reduced wrinkles. I still use it today and although I try all sorts of different moisturisers and serums I frequently come back to this one.
This serum is AMAZEBALLS.
Again, I keep forgetting to use it so this is quite an old version – I think they have updated the design since then. However whenever I put it on I always think, ‘why the hell don’t I use this EVERY DAY?’
It makes you skin feel ridiculously smooth. I mean it – ridiculously smooth. I put it on the other day and it felt like a robot’s skin. It’s like a gorgeously velvety polyfilla. I was so impressed by it I have resolved to use it every single day until it runs out. If it continues to make me feel like I’ve got 25th century robot skin, I’ll buy another one.
I’ve also just restocked on the moisteriser.
So hopefully by the end of the month I will look at oooh 42 at the most?
The great thing is you can buy Liz Earle at Boots now, so you can mix and match with No 7 when your budget is a bit tight.
PS I mentioned in my last post I had bought a wig, inspired by Catherine over at Atypical60 Stupidly, carried away with enthusiasm, I ordered without doing my research. I went for HOWIGS as they had a .co.uk website address. Subsequently I have read HORRIBLE reviews saying the wigs were awful or never arrived. I hope it turns up and is nice, I will write a post letting you know how I get on. In the meantime can anyone recommend somewhere I can buy a good wig for bad hair days?
Stay gorgeous, warriors!