A couple of weeks ago, I popped into see the new spring/summer collection from Leighton Denny. The new polishes usher in the season with vibrant, carnival shades flattering for all skin tones. There is also a nude shade for those a little shy.
Housed in the slick Leighton Denny square bottles with the nail expert’s name emblazoned down the side, there is a spectrum of six colours in total with a seventh one exclusively to M&S Beauty. My radar beeped over Glamazone, a stunning bright green with a gold shimmer. Reach For The Sky, a blue, is another close favourite with its silver shimmer.
The other colours are equally eye-catching: yellow (Passport to Shine), tangerine (Bon Voyage!), pearl white (Pure Paradise) and bright pink (this one is for M&S). If you’re interested in the nude, that’s called Mirage or Not.
Leighton Denny polishes are known for their impeccable quality – the formula is opaque and smooth to apply, leaving a flawless and beautiful finish. I also like the design of the bottle and handle – not just to look at but easy to grip and use. There is another bottle pictured above that deserves a mention – Leighton Denny’s Undercover matte base coat which dries fast to leave a smooth base for application.
The International Collection is available through Leighton Denny’s official website, John Lewis and M&S, priced at £11 each.
I’m becoming well acquainted with REN’s skin care as I slowly work my way around the range. I previously reviewed their Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask (which I loved) and Rosa Centifolia No1 Purity Cleansing Balm (again another beauty). Next up is the Rosa Centifolia Hot Cloth Cleanser.
Predictably it functions in exactly the same way as Liz Earle’s legendary Cleanse and Polish (it even comes with a pump) so it’s quite a feat to challenge a firm favourite amongst those loyal to THAT creamy cleanser and muslin cloth…although to be fair to REN, the routine is slightly different.
Apply to dry skin and gently massage the creamy cleanser over the face and neck. The cleanser comes with a decent flannel (as opposed to the flimsy muslin cloth) that you rinse in warm water and first place over the face to open the pores, then lightly polish off the cleanser to remove dirt, make-up and loosen dead skin cells. Finally you’re mean to splash with cool water to close the pores.
I don’t feel comfortable with one cleanse being adequate to remove make-up that’s been slapped on my face all day so I will double-cleanse to make sure any leftover bits are removed. When it comes to cleansing, nothing is more relaxing and satisfying than wiping it all off with a steaming, hot flannel.
The magical ingredients in this mixture are Vitamin P to decongest and soothe, Triglycerides from Cocoa Seed Butter to improve the skin barrier functions against moisture loss and Rosa Damascena from Damask Rose Petals to relieve and soothe skin.
There are no fancy frills with this – it is a straight-forward cream cleanser that’s skin-friendly for all types. After use my dry/normal combination skin does clean and clear as well as soft and touchable. I also think the rose scent is subtle as opposed to Liz Earle’s strong eucalyptus smell but that’s as exciting as things get. It’s an alternative choice for a cream cleanser, not ground-breaking but far from terrible.
Personal preference rules here and if you favour the cream cleanser and hot cloth routine, you may be inclined to give REN’s version a go. There is no reason why you shouldn’t. You may even like it better and it’s reasonably priced at £16 for 150ml. I just think there are other products from REN that are more worthy of a nod. I suspect the Clarifying Toner is one of them, which I’ve recently ordered from their website. I have been looking for a gentle, everyday exfoliating toner and this one has had rave reviews so I’m quietly confident it will deliver. I’ll let you know how I get on.
What REN products have you tried? I’d love to know your thoughts.
Last week the latest collection from Illamasqua rolled into town. Glamore is a fusion of colour, shimmer and texture. It’s also a collection that is accessible and likeable for all – there is nothing even a wallflower would be afraid of.
Three lipsticks and three nail colours complete the capsule collection. Today I am sharing the nail varnishes: Fire Rose (pink), Trilliant (champagne gold) and Marquise (orangey red with gold).
Illamasqua has created a new formula – Shattered Star, glitter with a very fine, textured matte finish. Glitter is usually my least favourite type of nail polish because I hate how it’s such a pain to remove but what’s won me over with the Shattered Star polishes is how flattering the appearance and texture is on the nail. It also distributes evenly (something which is quite difficult with regular glitter polish), chip-resistant and is fool-proof in application so I always do a neat job of it.
The fiery Marquise and the bubblegum pink Fire Rose are my favourites (and I’m not normally one for girlie pink colours). I hope Illamasqua develop more colours in the Shattered Star finish because I can foresee some other shades looking incredible (emerald green, please?)
The Shattered Star polishes are priced at £15 each.