Category Archives: cleanser

Vita Coco Coconut Oil – multipurpose saviour

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I am a huge fan of coconut oil as it is a true multi purpose product and is also an all natural product. I don’t always buy this brand but if I am shopping in Holland & Barratt then this is the brand they carry and it is a high quality, organic, extra virgin coconut oil so I am always happy to buy it.

I also love their coconut water to drink so some shopping trips are just to buy a supply of both these to keep me going.

#*~~#*~~#*~~HOW MUCH FOR HOW MUCH ? ~~#*~~#*~~#

I buy mine from Holland & Barratt in the shop but you can also buy from them on line. I’ ve seen it in some grocery stores too. H&B sell four sizes: 50 ml which costs £2.99, 250 ml which at present is half price at £3.49 but is usually £6.99 s if you want to try it get it now. The next size up is 500 ml which is £11.99 and finally the big size which is 750ml and costs £15.99.

It depends of how much you use as to which is best value. I use a lot so tend to go for the big size. You will see why when I explain what I use it for.

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~~#*~~#*~~WHAT DOES VITA COCO OIL LOOK LIKE ? ~~#*~~#*~~

This is called coconut oil but at room temperature is solid. It isn’t hard solid but is certainly not an oil. It does however have a very low melting point and just skin temperate will melt this within seconds.

As a solid this is a whitish looking cloudy product but as it melts it turns clear and colourless.

When you open the jar the smell of fresh coconut really hits you and instantly I am taken to the tropics, I was brought up in the West Indies so the smell of coconut is something that has great memories for me.

This brand is cold pressed and organic so the best quality natural sort of coconut oil you can buy.

~~#*~~#*~~IN THE KITCHEN ? ~~#*~~#*~~

The tag line for this coconut oil is “ Eat it… Wear it …. Swear by it!”

I use mine for frying as it really does help the food not stick to the pan. I cook a lot of Asian food and coconut oil helps the flavour in these dishes too.

Coconut oil was proclaimed as being the healthy alternative to other fats but now they are saying it is worse than butter for saturated fats Coconut oil has 90% saturated fats while butter has only around 64%. However half of virgin coconut oil’s saturated fat is lauric acid. This is a medium-chain triglyceride which they say has a number of health-promoting properties, including helping to improve levels of “good” HDL cholesterol.

A Harvard researcher states “ “ I don’t think coconut oil is as healthful as vegetable oils like olive oil and soybean oil, which are mainly unsaturated fat and therefore both lower LDL and increase HDL.”

So everything in moderation as sensible people would say and I use a combination of different oils including the coconut when I want the benefit of the flavour as well as the way it cooks.

Some claim is helps weight loss while others dispute this. Personally I wouldn’t use it in huge quantities until there is a bit more research as heart health is just as important and I can lose weight by eating less and doing more activity.

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~~#*~~#*~~AROUND THE HOUSE ? ~~#*~~#*~~

If I have a squeaking door a little coconut oil will ease that

I use it to apply to my leather sofas as the sun is quite drying on the backs of these and I find coconut oil soaks in well and doesn’t leave a greasy feel once it has soaked in and really feeds the dry leather. It also makes them smell good too.

Anywhere you would use a light oil like on my sewing machine this oil works well as a lubricant.

I have used it to soften my leather shoes and even on leather handbags to keep them soft.

~~#*~~#*~~ON MY BODY ? ~~#*~~#*~~

I have used this as a massage oil and add my on essential oils. I find ones like orange and grapefruit work well with the scent of coconut oil and it is a great massage oil as it lasts well for a massage while some other oils just soak straight in. At at the same time it does soak into the skin during the massage leaving my skin feeling soft, smelling good and my muscles less aching.

Coconut oil is especially good on the feet as it is moisturising yet allows the skin to breath . I often apply this to my feet at bedtime and put on some light moisture retaining socks as this helps keep my feet nice and soft.

I don’t shave any parts of my body except under my arms and the legs below the knee. Sometimes I use my Lush shaving creams and sometimes conditioner but I find that coconut oil does a great job too. I use this especially when my under arms are a bit sore as it lubricates and also soothes the skin. In the bath or shower the coconut oil melts and being a natural oil it doesn’t harm the environment when it goes into the sewage system. Also because coconut oil has lauric acid which is a natural anti-microbial and anti-bacterial it also protects your skin if you do accidentally cut yourself.

I often apply a little melted coconut oil to the ends of my hair in between washes as my hair tends to be dry and frizzy. Even in damp weather this helps stop any frizzing. My hair time was the 80s when perms and curly hair was in fashion and I struggle with the sleek look these days.

I also use coconut oil as a deep conditioning hair mask before washing my hair and after this I do still use conditioner but t really does feed my hair and help to keep it softer and it actually looks shiny too. I always use a natural shampoos and conditioners as chemical ones are full of parabens and harsh chemicals that strip your hair of its natural oils.

IMG_4132I know many people swear by cleansing wipes and cleansing waters but I prefer using an oil based cleanser as it is gentler and doesn’t strip the skin of is natural oils. I particularly like oil based cleansers for around my eyes as it then easily wipes off all make up including mascara and doesn’t need scrubbing and rubbing. This coconut oil works a treat . I apply a little coconut oil which has melted on my finger tips and gently massage it in before using a damp warm cloth the remove all the make up and grime. I use the cloth rinsed out several times if I feel I need to. I find the bamboo clothes work best for me. Cleansing with oil works efficiently as coconut oil breaks up the water-resistant ingredients often mascara and shadow and so no scrubbing is needed just a gentle wipe.

Although the price of this coconut oil may seem expensive when you compare it to the price of some natural and other not so natural creams and potions you can buy for your skin it actually works out quite reasonable. You really do not need a lot to get great moisturising results on your skin. Coconut oil is rich in antioxidants and Vitamin E. Coconut oil, like other natural oils as opposed to petroleum based ones actually goes into the skin rather than lying on top. Because it is absorbed into the skin the coconut oil’s natural antioxidants help to combat the effects of ageing by preventing free radical damage. The Vitamin E also helps cell regeneration, helps fade dark spots and encourages the skin’s ability to produce collagen. This means that my skin feels much softer and smoother and looks healthier , especially hen I apply coconut oil after my bath and before bed. It really isn’t greasy at all as it soaks in really quickly.

When I m cooking I like the fact that when I push the excess off the spoon into the pan I then just massage the excess that is on my finger into my hands rather than having to wash them like I would with some cooking oils! If I run out of hand cream I just pop and get a small pea sized dollop out with a spoon and use coconut oil instead.

I make a great scrub with coconut oil as the base. One which helps with cellulite is just a mix of ground coffee beans finely ground and coconut oil which exfoliates my skin on my his and thighs and leaves my skin glowing and soft and smooth. Another scrub is coconut oil with salt and essential oils or you can use brown sugar instead of the salt and your choice of essential oils that enhance the aroma.
I wouldn’t suggest coconut oil as a sunscreen but if you have been in the sun then I find a mix of aloe vera gel to cool and coconut oil to soak in does help my skin feel soothed and less dry and stop it looking like dried up leather. I apply the aloe vera gel first then the coconut oil as thn thy both get absorbed to do their work.

I sometime apply a small amount of coconut oil under my eyes before bed as it is a great moisturiser and doesn’t sting or run into my eyes and it also helps my eye lashes and eye brows look better too.

I have also used a little coconut oil on my cheek bones and around my eyes to add a nice sheen or glow to my make up. It work well with Benetint on my cheekbones.

Coconut oil makes a great lip salve. I use Lush sample containers and keep some in my hand bag. It “tastes” lovely and is instantly softening and soothing and leave my lips with a subtle sheen. Once again I often apply Benetint first then coconut oil.

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~~#*~~#*~~ANY OTHER USES ? ~~#*~~#*~~

Because coconut contains lauric acid which is not only antimicrobial but also anti bacterial it is perfect for cleansing make up brushes. I clean mine bout once a month using a mixture of coconut oil and an anti bacterial soap. I use a natural one from Lush as it smells great. The brushes I then dry in the airing cupboard if it is wet or in the sunshine when we have any. Keeping your brushes clean means that you will help prevent blemishes from bacteria on a dirty brush. The brushes feel soft and smell great too.

Apart from being great as a hand cream and for softening cuticles you can also use coconut oil around the nail skin when applying polish as then you wont get any polish on your skin. This is best done with a cotton bud as it you get it on your nail the polish will come off your nail too.

I bought some oil pulling oil at great expense last year and when I read what it contained it was actually basically coconut oil. Apparently they have proven with research that coconut oil can kill the Streptococcus bacteria which is what makes your breath smell. So before brushing you teeth just rinse a little coconut oil around your mouth and that should help reduce bad breath. It is also supposed to help whiten teeth. This is based on Ayurvedic medicine, known as gandusha in Ayurveda .
You are supposed to swill the oil around in your mouth for around 20 minutes. It is also supposed to help educe plaque and prevent or cure ulcers and so much more. Check out articles on line to find out more. I was skeptical but I don’t find it unpleasant and if I am home I just keep swilling it around in my mouth while getting on with other things around the house. Anything that might help with my awful teeth I am happy to try. Coconut oil works out much cheaper than the expensive oil pulling sachets which were just a combination of oils. I add a tiny amount of peppermint essential oil as it tastes better and of course I spit out the oil as it is full of toxins and yuk from in between my teeth etc. I spit into a tissue and throw it away as I try not to put too much oil down the plug holes as unblocking is expensive.

~~#*~~#*~~RECOMMENDED ? ~~#*~~#*~~

A whole hearted YES! Even if you don’t want to use it for cooking this has to be one of natures best multi purpose products. I love coconut and use this, coconut water from Vita Coca and also use shredded coconut fried in my rice, I bake with coconut both shredded and dessicated and also use a lot of coconut cream in Asian cooking . It is a wonderful natural product with so many uses . Coconut water from a natural coconut is sterile and has even been used for intravenous rehydration.

I wouldn’t be without my coconut oil and always have at least one jar in my cupboard. We used to use it for cooking in the West Indie when I was a child and I am so pleased it has become a commercial success as it is a fabulous product.

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Philosophy Purity Cleanser

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~~~~~~~~ ABOUT PHILOSOPHY ~~~~~~~

This is an American company started in 1996 by a man with thirty years experience in the area of professional skin care in clinical skin care laboratories.

Thy create products that thy claim are scientifically proven to be good for the skin. They don’t make any claims about these being natural though.

This Purity made simple was their first product that launched the company in New York back in 1996 and since then they have built up on their range and in 1999 they were the first beauty range to partner with qvc.

They state that:

“ from the beginning , philosophy has been rooted in dermatological science and biomedic treatments. With that in mind, we seek to bridge the gap between what is offered in dermatologist’s offices an retail so that women everywhere can personally have access to the best skin car technologies available.”

The lower case letters are all from the website and I find that pretentious or ignorant and can’t see why they choose to use all lower case it makes them looks stupid.

~~~~~All PACKED UP ~~~~~~

All Philosophy products come packed in a similar minimalist way which is pretty simple. Many, like this have white plastic bottles with black text and black lids. The text has the name of the product and a bit of ‘philosophy’ to go with it and all the ingredients are listed on the back which is good.

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~~~~~~~ETHICS AND PHILOSOPHY ~~~~~~

This company do not make any claims to use natural ingredients so I guess I can’t criticise them for that but thy don’t use natural ingredients.

They do however test their products or ingredients on animals and that is enough to put me off buying their products there is no need for animals to suffer for people to have beauty products.

~~~~~~ABOUT PURITY ~~~~~~

This is Philosophy’s first product and they claim it is a 3 in 1 cleanser for face and eyes. Philosophy state that :

our award-winning daily facial skin cleanser is formulated to gently cleanse, tone and melt away all face and eye makeup in one simple step, while lightly hydrating the skin. find out which cleanser is right for you.”

On the bottle the quote says “ Purity I natural” which is a bit cheeky as it gives the impression that the product I natural when in fact they are just philosophising !

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~~~~~MY EXPERIENCE ~~~~

This is based on the sample sachet that gave me around five uses so I feel I have had a fair chance to experience this and obviously samples are meant to give you enough of the product to convince you to buy it (or not in my case).

The contents of this are a creamy textured, milky but almost colourless consistency. It does have a faint aroma which is not unpleasant, slightly sweet with a hint of citrus. The scent doesn’t become more or less intense once the water mixes with it and it is on my face.

I always slightly wet my face before using a cleanser like this. I then massage a small amount of the product, around the size of a twenty pence piece onto my face. They say this is safe for using on your eyes but I didn’t massage it around my eyes too closely . I then always wipe everything off with an eco friendly bamboo cloth which I do wipe over my eyes. I didn’t seem to ting but still wouldn’t risk massaging it onto my lashes .

I cleaned my skin quite well but I still had mascara on my lashes which needed a bit of a rub to get all the mascara off and I don’t use waterproof mascara. I find oily cleaners much more effective and not nearly as harsh , nor do they need as much wiping off.

After using this my face felt clean enough but I did feel it needed moisturising. I always tone and apply serum and moisturiser but when using this I did feel my skin felt a bit dry until I had applied the moisturiser.

Philosophy say “ deep cleans pores and eliminates makeup build-up natural oil extracts help condition skin fragrance-free formula”

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It is hard to say if my pores are deep cleaned but whatever natural oils are in this are not very moisturising.

Checking the ingredients this does have lots of lovely, natural oils in it such as meadowfoam seed oil, coconut ,rosewood oil, geranium oil, cymbopogon martini oil, rosa damascena extract, amyris balsamifera bark oil, sandalwood oil, sage oil, cinnamomum cassia leaf oil, anthemis nobilis flower oil,carrot seed oil and pepper seed extract.

Then unfortunately they add, polysorbate 20, glycerin, carbomer, triethanolamine, methylparaben, propylparaben, citric acid, imidazolidinyl urea, yellow 5 (ci 19140) which I am less thrilled to see.

The top ingredient is water followed by sodium lauroamphoacetate, sodium trideceth sulfate . These are on the list of ingredients to avoid in quantity if you suffer from acne. I also try and avoid ingredients like this as my skin is very sensitive and I end up with nasty red rashes.

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I find that I can use products with some of these ingredients for a while but after using it for some time the sensitivity takes effect and the rash builds up. I only had enough for about five cleanses and in that time my skin seemed not to have any reaction but that is ot to say that had I used this for longer my skin would still have been okay.

In this last week my neck has become quite red and eczematic so in fact using these products could be the cause so just as well I have finished both the Purity cleanser and the Microdelivery. I threw away the ‘Hope in a jar as it smelled so awful.

I usually use sample sachets like these when I am travelling but in the interests of reviewing in the time frame I have suggested, used and reviewed the three Philosophy products all this last week.

I can’t say my skin looks any better for using these and I will be happy to go back to my usual all natural products now .

~~~~~WHERE TO BUY AND HOW MUCH? ~~~~~~

This is sold on Philosophy’s website and others including amazon.co.uk. It is also to be found I Boots and Jon lewis amongst others.

It comes in several sizes :

32 fl oz costs £64.99               16 oz costs £58.00         8 oz costs £28.99       3 oz costs £18.75       1 oz costs £8.75

As you can see this is far from being a cheap product but I am not convinced that this is value for money.