Friday, 19 September 2014

[Review] Garnier Body Tonic Smoothing Sugar Scrub

Usually I purchase 'Soap & Glory's Smoothie Star Breakfast Scrub' which is a good product but at RRP £8 it is quite pricey for a body scrub, so I wanted to see if I can find a cheaper alternative which is when I came across 'Garnier's Body Tonic Smoothing Scrub'. It had a lot of good reviews and for only £3.56 (on special offer in Superdrugs now, RRP £7.15), it was worth a try.

Directions and ingredients -
(Click on picture for bigger view).

Containing fruit extracts it has a strong smell and I am guessing the small red dots are suppose to be the fruit extracts. The scrub is very grainy so you do not need to rub it in too much. The back of the tube claims that after one use your skin feels noticeably softer and smoother and I was thoroughly impressed after my first use. It did leave my skin feeling soft and smelling fresh. However we shall see if after 3 weeks if my skin feels toned, (though I only exfoliate once a week).

After my initial first use I was very happy however the next day my skin felt very heavy and sticky, like there was a lot of residue left though I had washed everything off already. Maybe I had used too much product but I will not be purchasing Garnier's Body Tonic Smoothing Scrub again and will stick to my Soap & Glory Breakfast Scrub.

Rating out of 5:    

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Cuban Themed Afternoon Tea at Asia de Cuba

This outing with M.S was long overdue and since she had not been to afternoon tea before I decided to take her. As usual I was looking on and one deal that caught my eye was the champagne afternoon tea at Asia de Cuba (inside of St Martins Lane Hotel), for £25 per person. Having read reviews and seen the pictures I was very excited about this themed afternoon tea.

The Entrance at St Martins Lane Hotel - So sorry about the bouncer, he was obviously happy to spot a friend across the road.

M.S had a bit of trouble finding the place even though she was actually standing right outside of it but I do not blame her. I have walked past St Martins Lane Hotel before but I always wondered what that building was because there are no clear signs, actually there are no signs full-stop. Although the veiled curtains and yellow bottom certainly catches your eye, it is also a short walk from Leicester Sq. station and Charing Cross station so it is easy to find, once you know what you are suppose to look for anyway. Into the lobby there was a mix of eclectic furnishing such as the chessboard seats and the gnome table, however St Martins Lane were able to incorporate all these different objects without making it seem too tacky, somehow. I have to mention the toilets as well, they were so weird, if you look below it looks like a storage unit. You had to push the 'doors' to reveal the toilet and once inside it really does feel like you're in a box.

We were seated and shown the menu to choose our tea, the menu itself was in a Cuban box which also contained our utensils and a tea strainer. As we had already booked this afternoon tea we did not really need the menu so the waitress took it away rather quickly before I could take any pictures. I ended up having to borrow a box from another table. This afternoon tea actually has 3 courses and for each course there is a selection of 3 teas to choose from. The ones I chose were the Dragon Well, Lychee Red and Phoenix Honey Orchid to finish off. I would definitely recommend the Dragon Well and Phoenix Honey Orchid. The staff were very informative and they guide you through the teas and the dishes on the course.

The first course tea arrived in a big clear teapot, I absolutely love these teapots! The second course tea arrived in a smaller version and the last tea was served in a tiny clear cup. The last course teas are all cold and is suppose to aid digestion for the whole experience.

The savoury course was amazing, although the only thing was they were all cold by the time we got to it (M.S decided to go toilet when the food arrived and the obvious thing to do would be to wait for the other person before starting, unfortunately). I think my favourite would have to be the scones and my least favourite the vegetable summer rolls (they had no taste whatsoever even with the sauces provided). The mango, kiwi and strawberry layered bottles were also delightful, they were like a fruit puree. 

The desserts were sort of 50/50 with me. The banana spring rolls were weird but nice and the doughnuts with butterscotch sauce were amazing however the chilli chocolate was quite spicy and the key lime pie was much too sour for my liking. The cold tea to finish off was a great end, it was  very refreshing and was not too strong. All in all I was very happy with the afternoon tea and would definitely recommend Asia de Cuba to friends.

Monday, 15 September 2014

[Review] Etude House Aloe Moistfull Soothing Skin Toner

You may have seen me mention this product in previous posts and since this is my 3rd bottle I will do a review about it. When I was in Seoul 2013 I decided to try a new toner and the one I picked up was 'Etude House Aloe Moistfull Soothing Skin Toner'. The reasons I picked this series was because it claimed to both moisturize and soothe the skin which sounds perfect for combination skin-types. I wanted to believe the soothing qualities as I usually use an aloe vera plant for burns so this product should not irritate my skin. 

The bottle itself is made out of plastic and the packaging is pretty simple. It has the ingredients listed both in Korean and in English. The toner consistency is slightly gooey, like aloe vera itself and it comes out clear. It also smells lovely, not too overpowering. I use this product twice a day and apply with a cotton wool, on application it sinks into my skin quickly and does not feel sticky at all. My skin feels moisturised and prepped for my cream.

I have been using this product for just over a year now and have not looked back. It does everything I want from a toner, it moisturizes, cleans off excess make-up and soothes the skin. I have not had a break-out in a long while and will not be switching my toner any time soon. The only thing is Etude House products are not available in the UK so you can only order it online (Ebay, Yesstyle, Sasa), which also means it can be quite pricey compared to if you bought it in Korea. I usually get mine from Yesstyle UK as they regularly have discount codes and deals on.

Rating out of 5: