Writing a blog is a funny thing. You sit and ramble on about things you like, and sometimes you wonder if anyone is finding it interesting or if you're just being very self indulgent. I hope this month of all time favourites has been somewhat interesting so far. We are more than half way through and there are only two more posts to go. It's actually gone pretty quickly! I hope you are enjoying it. For me, it has served the purpose to get me back into the swing of writing and I have even scheduled posts well in advance. I feel like a self pat on the back is in order.
This instalment is all about body and hair care, and it was the easiest list to come up with. It seems I don't change products once I find things I like in this department. Here is my list of trusty favourites:
As far as haircare goes, I think Kerastase is the best brand known to man. I'm a big fan of the Bain de Force shampoo and have enjoyed their Nutritive Irisome Masquintense hair mask. The hair salon where I go always uses these products and it was Luke, my hairdresser, who recommended the next two products when my hair was lacking shine and looking damaged.
This leave in conditioner is thick but doesn't weigh your hair down. I use it together with a pump of the Elixir Ultime oil every time I wash my hair, applying it when it's still damp. It protects your hair from the heat of hairdryers and styling irons and it leaves it looking very smooth. A little goes a long way, and I tend to go through two tubes a year.
You will have heard of Moroccan Oil. Maybe you have tried it and perhaps you even love it. I need something that stops my hair from being frizzy and gave it a go, but it was just a tad oily for me. This option from Kerastase is perfect for me. One of the things I like most about it is its gorgeous scent, but it's also very light and it makes your hair shine and look incredibly healthy. I have used it in conjunction with the Ciment Thermique for over 4 years and have no intention to ever stop!
Kerastase products are widely available at many hair salons, but I always buy mine from hqhair or look fantastic, which are both part of the same group. They have Kerastase on offer most of the time as well as numerous discount vouchers throughout the year, so you will rarely pay full price for them.
Coming from a family of hairdressers, I learned the importance of a good hairdryer when I was a little girl. Good ones can be expensive, but from experience I can tell you that the cheaper options will only last 2-3 years, and by the time you buy your second one you could have had a really decent quality one which will last you for years and years and years. I love my Parlux hairdryer. It is powerful, so it takes me less than 15 minutes to completely dry and style my hair and I rarely ever use straighteners or curling irons because I don't need to. I have naturally wavy hair, which I can blow dry completely straight with this or twist the ends and create loose curls.
This is a brand that is hugely underrated. Although I'd seen their products on the shelves at Boots, I had never tried anything until two years ago, when I got a couple of gift sets for my birthday. I love all products mostly because of their gorgeous scent, but it was the body wash and the hand wash that I have kept buying again and again since I first tried them. It's hard to describe fragrances, but if you prefer something slightly citrussy with depth, you may love this.
I feel I'm beginning to sound like a broken record singing the praises of natural products, but I really think that it is important that you don't put nasty chemicals on your skin. Long are the days of natural body washes hardly lathering and feeling a little bit basic. Faith in Nature have a fantastic range of shower gels and shampoos in some beautiful fragrances. I particularly like their aloe vera and ylang ylang, but if I had to pick one, it would be the lavender and geranium shower gel. Lavender is incredibly relaxing and geranium revitalising, so you will come out of the shower feeling ready full of energy and calm and collected at the same time.
Faith in Nature is usually available at health food stores as well as from Oxfam shops in the UK. Click here to find your nearest one.
Having a bath every now and then is not only indulging and lovely but also necessary. I prefer bath oils to a bubble baths and Aromatherapy Associates have the best in my opinion. I have the little box with several of them, so I will use different ones depending on my needs or my mood. There is one called Relax Deep, another one is Relax Light, Revive Morning, Revive Evening... You don't need to know anything about arometherapy and oil properties to choose which one you need or feel like using. The one I love the most is Support Equilibrium, which has frankincese essential oil, one of my favourites along with geranium and ylang ylang. I used to have the full size and would buy it again in a heartbeat.
The full size bottles can be a little pricey, but if the small set is a perfect way to test the waters and see what scents you like most before you buy a full size bottle. I just noticed the set is half price from Space NK at the moment, so head there if you fancy giving them a go.
A very old favourite that I haven't used for years. In fact, writing this series has made me remember how much I have enjoyed Dr Hauschka products and how they helped me get rid of my acne in my twenties, so as I go through other skin and body care I am definitely going to start buying them again.
I have very dry skin which gets quite itchy in the winter with central heating, so I need to use something that is highly moisturising. If you like roses this oil will be perfect for you. It really nourishes your skin and isn't sticky, and you don't need that much at all. Weleda's Wild Rose Body Oil is also very good, although I find the fragrance a bit stronger. The other body lotion that is fantastic is La Roche Posay Lipikar Body Milk, which is cheaper and widely available at Boots.
This post is full of higher end products, but this affordable hand cream is just as good as the rest! I have already talked about it in one of my first posts about what I took with me on holiday, and it is something I have used for over ten years. It is a very concentrated product and therefore you only need the tiniest bit to hydrate your hands. My hands get very dry and carrying hand cream with me everywhere is a must if I don't want to feel uncomfortable all day. There are lots of really expensive creams out there, some with lovely scents and packaging, but this is the best I have ever found.
That is my small list. I would love to hear what your favourites are!