I'm delighted that another of my very favourite bloggers, Helen from the lovely Just Nice Things site has offered to guest blog for me this week. If you're interested in nails - and other cosmetics! - then you simply have to make Just Nice Things a port of call on the internets! Helen won my first ever blog giveaway way back in November last year, and she's reviewing on the prizes I gave her, Organic Surge Eye Gel.
Take it away, Helen:
Isn’t it strange the way that wonderful ageing issues that suddenly become a factor when you hit 30-something? Like the fact that the extra half stone you put on every Christmas just doesn’t shift? Or the fact that you still have the marks on your face left by the seams of your pillow at 9am because your skin hasn’t sprung back? Puffy eyes? Well, not only do I have to contend with all these concerns, I am also blessed by having chronic psoriasis.
For those of you who don’t know, psoriasis is a non-contagious skin condition that affects approximately one in every one hundred people. No-one knows what causes it, but we do know that it is essentially the same as having super efficient skin that just renews too quickly, pushing the old skin cells to the surface, where they gather and flake off. This can be incredibly painful, itchy and sore, not to mention unsightly. I’ve lost count of the number of people that have gone “Eurrrgghhh! What’s wrong with you?” to me, or people who haven’t wanted to shake my hand because of it.
What this also means is that I have to be extremely careful with what I put onto and into my skin. I don’t smoke (any more), I drink plenty of water. I have found out, over many years, what the triggers are. Fizzy white wine, chillies, strawberries and tomatoes are likely to have me clawing at my skin in agony. The same goes for beauty products. Anything containing sodium laureth / lauryl sulphate, perfume, or parabens is anathema to me. I don’t wear foundation, and I can’t get overly excited by the Sleek palettes that everyone loves, because they contain parabens. Once a week or so is fine but if I were to use something daily that contained any of the above ingredients, I know I’d be flaring, itchy and irritable. I haven’t narrowed it down precisely – for example, despite all their claims to be nasty-free and hypoallergenic, I can’t use either Jergens or Simple products. Don’t know why, I just know they hurt like hell when I apply them.
Similarly, I was a bit scared to try Organic Surge. Usually the only skincare I use is Liz Earle as I know from trial and error that it doesn’t have any sinister effects on me. I had an Organic Surge handcream a while ago and I don’t know what was in it but it set my psoriasis ridden paws on fire. However, the lure of a free lipstick is too much for any beauty blogger to deny, and so I entered one of Luce’s Get Lippie reader competitions, and won! I couldn’t believe it. The only thing I’d ever won before this was the odd £10 on the lottery, and a very classy silver plated after dinner mint tray at a school fete once. The Get Lippie prize bag contained several Organic Surge products, and so, with some trepidation, I reached for the eye gel.
I love eye gel. I used to nick my mum’s elderflower and vitamin E eye gel when I was little (and certainly in no need of it). I remember liking the way it felt on my skin and immediately made me feel brighter and more awake. So, I couldn’t resist trying this one out. I usually approach new products with a cynical “what reaction is this going to get then?” , so imagine my glee when it did….nothing. As in, I had no reaction at all. Brilliant. No stinging, no itching, just that lovely tightening and smooth feeling. Fantastic. I haven’t been over egging it and using this daily as I know my skin can sometimes get fed up with certain items, but I’ve been using this eye gel a couple of times a week since Christmas with no ill effects.
OK, so it doesn’t banish the dark circles (perhaps I need to look into drinking less wine…but then again, nah) but it does make the skin around my eyes feel smoother, look brighter and generally feel zingy. A little goes a long way here, hence the reason that this little 15 ml pot has lasted me since December. So as far as I am concerned, it’s a hit. It makes me feel nice and just perks me up a bit. And anything that can do that without rendering me like the Elephant Man deserves to score highly in my book.
Oh and I apologise for the slightly soft focus Wheel of Fortune “modeling the prize” photos. As you can tell from the product shots, I’m a nail blogger and you don’t get to see my face all that often. Mainly because it’s usually covered in creases from my pillow…