Murad gift set

I recently received this lovely gift set as a freebie for subscribing to Glamour magazine. Murad is a brand I’d been wanting to try for some time so when this set was offered as a subscription incentive I didn’t need to think too hard about it – magazines at a discounted price and free skincare seemed like a win-win situation! The set is comprised of Energizing Pomegranate Cleanser, Intensive-C Radiance Peel, Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisture and Renewing Eye Cream.

The Energizing Pomegranate Cleanser is a liquid which turns to foam on application. I needed two pumps for a decent coverage and the foam quickly melts away on contact with the skin. Because of this, initially it felt as though it wasn’t cleansing as efficiently as the thicker formulations I’m used to, but I find that provided I remove my make-up thoroughly beforehand my skin is left feeling clean without feeling tight or dry.

Murad Energizing Pomegranate Cleanser

The cleanser claims to protect skin from free radical damage whilst removing excess oil without stripping skin of natural moisture.  To be honest, although I did enjoy using this product it’s not really the best fit for my skin type. Whereas I had quite oily skin in my teens and early 20s, it’s now much drier so I tend to favour creamier formulations. Murad has a really extensive range of products so I will definitely try one of their other cleansers at some point. I couldn’t find the Energizing Pomegranate Cleanser on the Murad website, but there is a Daily Foaming Cleanser available which looks almost identical. Interestingly I did find it on the Marks & Spencer website for £25 for a 150ml bottle – £3 less than the Daily Foaming Cleanser on the Murad site. Curious!

Murad Intensive-C Radiance Peel mask

The product I was most excited about trying from this set was the Intensive-C Radiance Peel which contains glycolic acid to accelerate cell turnover. It also uses vitamin C and Indian fig to protect against free radicals whilst enhancing clarity and luminosity, and Myrtle extract to support collagen production. It’s a creamy texture that you leave on for up to ten minutes once or twice a week.  It claims to brighten, smoothe and hydrate skin “reversing environmental ageing after just one use”. This really appealed to me as I’m not overly keen on grainy exfoliators –  I find they’re almost always not grainy enough (although I do remember using Aapri scrub in my teens which left my skin red and shiny!) It does say on the back of the tube that it can cause a slight tingling sensation which I found lingered for a few minutes after rinsing off, but this wasn’t uncomfortable or unpleasant. Afterwards my skin felt lovely and smooth, radiant and clean. At £49.50 for 50ml it’s not cheap but I really loved this mask and would definitely consider purchasing a full size tube.

Murad Hydro-dynamic Ultimate Moisture

The Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisture was also another product that exceeded my expectations. Although the pot is really small it has lasted longer than I anticipated. The texture is quite thick but spreads well and a little goes a long way. The main ingredients are avocado, sunflower and olive fruit oils, retinyl palmitate and shea butter as well as a “collagen support complex”. After using it my skin feels hydrated, plumped up and, importantly at this time of year, protected against the elements. It certainly lives up to the claim of locking in  “optimal moisture levels for up to 8 hours leaving skin feeling silky soft and luxuriously hydrated”. At £64 for 50ml I’d have to give serious thought to purchasing this but if budget were not a consideration I wouldn’t hesitate.

Murad renewing eye cream

The Renewing Eye Cream claims to combat the full range of ageing concerns: crow’s feet, deep wrinkles, puffiness and dark circles. I don’t tend to suffer from dark circles so I can’t really judge how effective the cream is on that point. However I am at an age where I’m keen to reduce the appearance of crow’s feet and crepey skin. I did find the cream plumped up my skin and softened fine lines.  With essential fatty acids for hydration, peptides to stimulate collagen and elastin as well as wild yam and soybean sterols to reduce wrinkles and fine lines it’s a product that would be suitable for almost anyone.  It gets a big thumbs up from me. The price? An eye-watering £64 for 15ml. I personally wouldn’t spend that much on an eye cream, but a 40% discount code was included in the gift set so I may just treat myself to this and a few other items from the Murad website.

All in all I was seriously impressed with the gift set and I’d go as far as saying that the Intensive-C Radiance Peel and Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisture are new favourites!

 

Have you tried anything from the Murad range and if so did you love it?

 

Thanks for reading and have a lovely day!

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Juel

Today's post is all about a lovely skincare range I stumbled upon at my local artisan market which comes to town every month. Now, I have to confess that I've become so fixated with the big skincare brands that I don't usually give smaller unknown ones a second thought, but in this case I'm glad I made the exception. I spent quite a while talking about the products to Julie who founded Juel following years of suffering from eczema and contact dermatitis. After trying many products over the years she developed her own range of skincare products using a team of experts for research and development. Juel uses only high quality raw materials and is particularly good for people with eczema and psoriasis (Julie tells me she has had very good feedback from her customers to testify to this). This really resonated with me as last winter I had a very bad flare up of eczema on my eyelids. It was the first time I'd suffered from it and was it almost certainly caused by stress. I tried various creams and gels but nothing would calm it, until I relented and got some steroid cream from the doctor – something I'd been trying to avoid as it thins the skin.

 

Anyway after trying all the products on the Juel stall several times I decided to buy the Facial Oil Elixir as a facial oil had been on my wish list for a while. I've been using it several times a week at night over the last couple of months and it really does make a difference to my skin – it feels and looks smoother, plumper and softer. One of the key ingredients is squalane (a more stable version of squalene) which has antibacterial properties, prevents UV damage and the formation of age spots, as well as promoting cell growth. Squalane also closely resembles sebum (the protective oil secreted by the skin) making it easy for the skin to absorb. There has been some controversy over the use of squalane in beauty products as it used to be extracted from the livers of endangered sharks, although most if not all companies now use botanical sources. Other skin-boosting oils included in this elixir are rosehip, which contains high levels of vitamins A, C and E, argan oil, and thistle oil, which is high in essential fatty acids omega 3 and 6. A few drops go a long way and the 30ml bottle at £14.99 is really good value for money considering how long it will last. The oil has quite a sweet smell but it isn't too overpowering.

Juel face oil

When you discover a new range of skincare it's easy to get carried away with a great sales pitch and invest heavily only to regret it later and leave it all gathering dust and taking up precious space in the bathroom cabinet. We've all done it haven't we? For that reason I only bought one product but after testing the Intense Moisturiser and Anti-Aging Cream on the backs of my hands I was kicking myself later for not picking up one of those too. My hands have never felt so soft and I couldn't stop stroking them for the rest of the day.

 

As well as skincare Juel has the most amazing colognes and body lotions. I always think the word cologne sounds really old-fashioned and not very appealing but these smell every bit as good as another rather more famous range of colognes in my opinion. The lime & mandarin and peony & pomegranate are my favourites. I can't wait for the Christmas markets now so I can stock up!

 

You can find Juel Facial Oil Elixir and the rest of the range here.

 

Have you stumbled upon any beauty gems recently? I'd love to hear your thoughts and suggestions.

 

Thanks for reading,

 

Emma xx

 

 

 

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