Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Coveting....Northern Lights Birchwood Tray

Along with teapots and enamelware (and many other things) I have always been a big fan of trays....it's not that I use trays that often to be honest, but I just love them and am particularly loving this one which is now available at Amnesty International's online shop for the reasonable sum of £21.50. The illustration is by Finnish artist Emma Laiho. And should you be browsing the Amnesty site....I am also loving these gorgeous hand-painted cups, although I would probably want them more if the Winter wasn't closing in as they seem to me more of a Summer purchase.
On the note of Amnesty's website though, it is one of a list of online 'shops' from NGOs and other organisations that are a great source of inspiration for original Christmas shopping (aah, yes...I am joining the hordes of annoying shops that have already started pushing Christmas in our faces!).....but seriously, just thought I'd mention it now for all the super-organised out there......

Sunday, 3 October 2010

Beauty Review: Burt's Bees Pore Refining Mask

I have been a fan of Burt's Bees ever since a friend bought me one of their travel kits a few years ago while on holiday in the US. At the time, particularly living in South Africa, the range of 'natural' beauty products was rather limited and I found the lack of synthetics combined with interesting natural ingredients a refreshing approach.
I am actually now on my second jar of Burt's pore-refining mask with french green clay. I bought the first in Summer last year and have just purchased the second, which I suppose is enough of a review in itself.
The mask is 100% natural and basically contains French green clay and dried herbs and flowers. The product comes in powder form and needs to be mixed with a little water to make a thin paste which can be spread onto the face. Although I do find this a little fiddly, and occasionally messy, the advantage is that you can mix up as much as you like and the product has an excellent shelf life. For me, the reason why I like this so much is that my skin is slightly sensitive and I have found that other purifying, clay-based masks tend to irritate my skin. This one does leave my skin slightly flushed for a while, but it doesn't itch and the after effects are that my skin actually feels soothed and perfectly clean. I can't say huge pores are my major skin issue so I can't speak for those who suffer from this affliction but as a general pore-refining, deep cleansing mask this one is the best I've used.