Sunday, 26 April 2015

APIVITA Cleansing Tonic Lotion for Normal/Dry Skin Review

Even though, I have normal to oily skin, I wanted a toner that was moisturising. I was introduced to this toner by a friend who is a fan of the brand, and swore that this made the roughness of her skin disappear.  

Apivita Cleansing Tonic Lotion for normal to dry skin, is a product to be used for:
  • removing left over cleansing residue
  • pre-hydration
  • softness and elasticity

The other toner in the range is for oily/combination skin, lists denatured alcohol as it's second ingredient, and aims to remove oiliness. The last time I used a toner where denatured alcohol as a main component (slaps self), my skin became incredible oily during the day. That was not fun. And that said toner, coincidentally is for oily and acne prone skin.

  • Alcohol-free tonic lotion
  • removes cleansing milk or water residue 
  • moisturises the keratin layer, making skin more permeable in preparation of the products to be applied next
  • consists of 97% natural ingredients
  • Dermatologicaly tested


Aqua**, PPG-26-Buteth-26, Mel* (Honey) Extract, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Extract, Panthenol (humectant, moisturiser, emollient), Citrus Aurantium Amara (Neroli, bitter orange blossom) Oil*, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet almond) Seed* Extract, Aqua, Menthyl Lactate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Glycerin, Arginine, Camelia Sinensis Leaf* , Tocopheryl Acetate, Allantoin, Sodium Phytate, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil* , Pelargonium Graveolens (Rose Geranium) Oil*,  Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Oil*, Arachis Hypogaea (Peanut) Oil, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Butylene Glycol, Retinyl Palmitate, Parfum, Limonene, Linalool, Hexyl Cinnamal, Benzyl Salicylate, Citronellol, Geraniol, Coumarin

Natural and/or beneficial
Essential Oils
Fragrance some may find irritating

  • The aqua listed in the ingredients is actually green tea infusion
  • feels cooling upon application
  • contains many natural extracts and oils
  • leaves skin feeling soft after use
  • smells great
  • dry patches are gone after use
  • skin texture appears smoother
  • removes leftover makeup, and just full face makeup too, I've used this to remove makeup before (I know, horrible, but it was an emergency and it actually worked)
  • skin can feel a little drying and tight immediately after use
  • second ingredient is a conditioning agent and fragrance

I think this will work well for those of you who like using cleansers that can leave a lot of residue behind, like a milk cleanser or balm cleanser.

I personally don't think toners should serve a purpose to cleanse any remaining makeup, because there really shouldn't be any after you have cleansed properly. I use toners mainly to re-balance the skin's natural PH level, to it's slightly acidic state. As well as, deliver something beneficial to skin, like antioxidants and vitamins. I do like using this toner, before makeup, if I feel like I have dry skin, and want some dry patches to go away, because this truly does have amazing moisturising qualities, and makeup sits well after use.

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Swisse Argan Facial Moisturiser Review

This is currently my favourite moisturiser. Another product I found, that is more on the 'natural' side that is gentle, yet nourishing.

Swisse Argan Facial Moisturiser is:
  • a natural, daily facial moisturiser
  • formulated for dry skin
  • part of Swisse's (mostly known for their vitamins) natural skincare range

  • enriched with certified organic argan oil, green tea and chamomile to protect and smooth the skin
  • skin will feel hydrated and nourished
  • contains Plantolin to calm redness and irritation
  • for everyday use
  • formulated to assist with dry skin
  • Swisse skin care promises that their range is 'free from toxic ingredients that may harm your body, well-being or the environment'


Aqueous Extract of Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf
Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil
Glyceryl Stearate SE
Cetearyl Alcohol
Argania Spinosa Kernal (Argan) Oil
Centipeda Cunninghamii (Plantolin) Extract
Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter)
Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter
Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil
Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract
Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract
Colloidal Oatmeal
Chondrus Crispus (Carrageenan)
Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate
Citric Acid
Rosa Damascena Flower Oil
Vetiveria Zizanoides Root Oil
Citrus Paradisi (Grapefruit) Peel Oil
Citrus Aurantifolia (Lime) Peel Oil
Benzyl Alcohol
Dehydroacetic Acid

  • absorbs quickly and easily
  • the ingredients are mainly of natural origin
  • is developed for dry skin but works well for my normal to slightly oily skin type
  • isn't greasy on application
  • works great under make-up
  • tube packaging, more hygienic than jar and easy to use
  • doesn't include the following:


  • can become slightly greasier in the day, if too much is applied, but I have normal to slightly oily skin, and this is formulated for dry skin
  • argan oil is the only organic ingredient, and is further down in the list even though this is named 'argan moisturiser'. Instead grape seed oil is the second ingredient, so the formula contains more of this ingredient

Repurchase? Yes

Overall, this is an amazing, gentle moisturiser. It is easily absorbed and doesn't make my skin red, or break out. It works great under makeup, and has even aided in eliminating a pesky dry spot on my cheek. 

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Rosehip PLUS Rosehip Oil Review

I wanted to try Rosehip PLUS Rosehip Oil to help lighten my remaining acne scars and even out my skin tone.

This is my second bottle of this brand and fourth bottle overall. So it's fair to say I love this stuff. Especially this brand. It's more orange in colour than the others I have tried, which is a sign of high quality and the beta-carotene content.

Rosehip PLUS Rosehip Oil is:
  • 100% pure and natural + Australian Certified Organic
  • cold-pressed, in this case using a chemical free extraction; so more of the vitamins, antioxidants and essential fatty acids remain.


  • Reduces the appearance of stretch marks and scars
  • Maintains skin hydration and softness
  • Improves appearance of dry and sensitive skin
  • Minimizes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
  • Promotes skin elasticity and texture

Skin type

So, I have normal to (sometimes) oily skin (T-zone), that is prone to hormonal breakouts. No wrinkles (yet).
Tip: Don't be scared to use this if you have oily/combination skin. I did when I first started, and if anything, this has made my skin more 'normal'. 


I apply 3-4 drops onto clean, dry skin using fingertips and pat in, or
Concentrate on target spot.

The good:
  • 'drier' oil, easily absorbed
  • evens out skin tone
  • helps fades new acne scars well, and old acne scars moderately
  • doesn't give me spots, zits, pimples etc.
  • I wake up with soft, supple skin

The not so good, but I can deal with it:
  • skin can become light sensitive if the oil was the only thing you put on your face the night before (vitamin A?) Solution: wear sunscreen
  • doesn't smell like roses...yes, I actually thought it would.....smells more like fish oil capsules....(omegas?) but it doesn't linger
  • I'm not completely sure if this has made the skin near my mouth thinner, but now I avoid putting it all over my face
  • Can go rancid quickly if you forget to close the lid properly, water gets inside, comes into contact with direct sunlight

Repurchase? Yes

I use this at night on its own or under a light moisturiser. Overall, rose hip oil has improved the condition of my skin. It has become a consistent part of my routine.

Monday, 6 April 2015

Sukin Sensitive Facial Moisturiser Review

I came across Sukin Sensitive Facial Moisturiser in my quest for a more natural skincare routine. As I'm prone to hormonal breakouts, I wanted to try the one that was developed for sensitive skin. It has fewer ingredients than the original. I've had this for a few months, hence the faded packaging:


A moisturiser that is:
  • lightweight and gentle
  • absorbs quickly to deliver hydration 
  • promotes radiant, balanced skin


  • As claimed, the moisturiser is lightweight and absorbs quickly.
  • The ingredients are mostly natural and did not irritate my skin. 
  • Slight, pleasant vanilla scent
  • Affordable
  • And:


  • Did not work well under makeup in the winter, (however, it is marketed as a 'light moisturiser')
  • Mainly natural ingredients; except one (or two) that are strange additions to a moisturiser specifically created for the "Sensitive" range...Ceteareth-20 (See below for my opinion) 


Aqua, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil, Cetearyl Alcohol, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Glycerin, Cetyl Alcohol, Ceteareth-20, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract (Chamomile), Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Oil, Rosa Canina Fruit Oil (Rose Hip), Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Phenoxyethanol, Benzyl Alcohol, Vanillin, Vanilla Planifolia Fruit Extract.

Natural and/or beneficial
Some might find irritating 
Irritant/toxic?: Ceteareth-20 is used to enhance skin absorption, but has been shown to contain impurities that are highly toxic by Environmental Working Group, And it's listed as the sixth ingredient.....
Phenoxyethanol : Often used as a preservative in natural cosmetics, as an alternative to parabens, but has shown to be toxic, but is lower down the list so this probably shouldn't bother most people.

I usually have normal to oily skin, that is prone to the occasional hormonal breakout. But this winter, while changing to this lotion, it became quite dry. So if you have normal to oily skin all year round, this would be an ideal moisturiser for you.

I sometimes wore two to three layers when:

  • I had drier cheeks during the winter, and 
  • under makeup, for a smoother application.

This lotion would work the best for those with normal to oily skin, or even as a light night cream over a serum or facial oil. It is probably not heavy enough for those with very dry skin. 
I also use this during hot, humid, summer days, when I prefer something less heavy. It is a better, natural alternative than a lot of the silicone-heavy moisturisers on the market. 

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Goodness Everyday Cream Cleanser Review

Here's the cleanser I'm currently using.

I’ll get your skin spick and span, soft and smooth. With all the goodness of apple extract, chia seed, avocado and coconut oils, you’ll be prepped for what comes next, day or night "
  • removes makeup
  • cleanses without drying skin 
  • natural ingredients 'no nonsense included'
  • includes chia seed oil (which seems to be the hero of the brand)


I know it says that you can remove makeup with this but I like to keep that as a separate step. I just use this to cleanse my skin. I use this in the morning, and the nights I haven't worn any/a little makeup. It doesn't work well for removing makeup unless you use it on your face dry, then try to 'dissolve' the makeup first. I just use coconut oil.

It has the consistency of a light lotion.

The good:
  • 'natural' ingredients are at the top of the list 
  • gentle, doesn't leave skin red and stripped from all moisture 
  • never leaves skin dry
  • no animal testing
  • nice packaging, flip lid would have been a little easier though
  • contains essential oils which some people find irritating
  • doesn't suggest how much of the product to actually use
  • there is no ingredient list on their website

Saturday, 4 April 2015

Palmer's Purifying Enzyme Mask Review

I (somewhat, impulsively) purchased this on a particularly gloomy, rainy evening. I needed a clay mask. Not really, but the weather was muggy all day and I had dragged my feet through dirty trams and trains. You know that feeling? Erghblegh..

It was around the time I stepped off the platform and into my car, that I decided I needed to detour into the nearest pharmacy.

Out of the many available masks, this seemed to be the only one with kaolin and bentonite clay high on the list. Well, there was another, well know brand, but it "could also be used as a scrub". I didn't feel like scraping small pieces of who knows what across my face that night.

  • Brightens, clears and clarifies skin
  • contains kaolin clay to clean congested skin and natural papaya fruit acids to tighten pores and remove dead skin cells
  • leaves skin smoothed and looking younger

  • skin feels less congested after use
  • easy to use, tube packaging with lid
  • did not irritate my skin
  • did not feel dry after use
  • includes plant extracts and moisturising ingredients

  • papaya fruit extract is lower on the list = lower quantity = is it effective?
  • there a few concerning ingredients that have been shown to irritate the skin, which might explain the directions of only applying a thin layer and for "up to 10 minutes"

Water (Aqua), Kaolin, Titanium Dioxide, Bentonite, Isopropyl Myristate, Glycereth-26, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Cyclotetrasiloxane, Glycerin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Lactobacillus/Papaya Fruit Ferment Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Epilobium Angustifolium Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Silica, Ceteareth-20, Disodium EDTA, Quaternium-15, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Magnesium Oxide, Phenoxyethanol, Propylene Glycol, Methylisothiazolinone, Fragrance (Parfum), Benzyl Benzoate

Natural and/or beneficial

Kaolin & Bentonite: clays that draws out impurities
Lactobacillus/Papaya Fruit Ferment Extract: enzyme/ferment to help exfoliation
Cocoa Seed Butter & Shea Butter                                                         

Some might find irritating: 

Shea Butter: You've chosen the wrong brand if you're sensitive to this
Titanium Dioxide: common ingredient in sunscreens, used as a UV filter. It was also deemed to be "possibly carcinogenic to humans" when dust particles are airborne and inhaled, but then it is not actually absorbed through the skin*. Titanium dioxide is also used as a white pigment, even in food. I can only see this as the reason it's included in a face mask, as it is very white in colour, and perhaps to bulk up the product too.
PEG-100 Stearate: doesn't absorb into skin, but side effects are exasperated if applied onto broken skin.


Isopropyl Myristate: a synthetic oil that can absorb into the skin and used to make  products have a more slicker feel.
Quaternium-15: possible eye/skin irritant, expected to be toxic/harmful based on studies with moderate doses. Also, formaldehyde releasing. However, ingredient is lower on the list = minimal irritation
Methylisothiazolinone: Awarded Contact Allergen of the Year 2013 by American Contact Dermatitis Society!

Tested on animals:No

Overall, this mask worked well for my skin without irritation, despite the inclusion of weird, harsher chemicals. The clay mask left my skin feeling less oily, and did not result in overtly dried, red skin. There was one time where I accidentally fell asleep and woke up two hours later, to find slightly irritated, red skin, and small zits the next day, but I guess that's my own fault. (Or, is it?....).

This mask is really really white, but it doesn't leave you Casperfied.

It goes on smooth, and washes away easily with warm water.
Leaves skin feeling smooth and moisturised, I should probably thank Palmer's for actually including the non-weird ingredients they're known for.

If you're wondering, Palmer's is known for Cocoa Butter.

* Pflücker F., Wendel, V., Hohenberg, H., Gärtner, E., Will, T., Pfeiffer, S., Wepf, R. and Gers-Barlag, H. (2001). The Human Stratum corneum Layer: An Effective Barrier against Dermal Uptake of Different Forms of Topically Applied Micronised Titanium Dioxide. Skin Pharmacol Appl Skin Physiol, 14(Suppl. 1), pp.92-97.

^Liu P, Cettina M, and Wong J. Effects of isopropanol-isopropyl myristate binary enhancers on in vitro transport of estradiol in human epidermis: a mechanistic evaluation. Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences. 2009;98(2):565- 572.

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