I love advent calendars.
When we were little, my Mum made us a fabulous advent calendar out of felt. Every day you take out a little figure to eventually make up a whole nativity scene. It still goes up in our house every year, and every year there’s always a lot of sneaky shuffling about, cos everyone thinks they can place the scene in a better position than anyone else (chickens shouldn’t be on the roof, Mother!).
I’ve seen so many awesome ideas for advent calendars, everything from tree ornaments to gin, so I was super excited to be asked to contribute to The Body Shop Christmas Blogger Advent Calendar this year!
They very kindly sent me over a whole bundle of skincare products from their new Body Shop Aloe Vera range and I’ve been having a jolly old time testing them all out.
I also get to play Santa Claus to you guys as they’ve given me TWO more sets of products to give away!
Funnily enough, I’d never tried any of the Body Shop’s skincare products before now. We had a branch in Spain but I’d just never tried anything, except for when I stole my sister’s lip balm once. (Sorry Ches!)
And I’m now regretting this. A LOT.
My skin is very close to being the best it’s ever been in my whole entire life and it pretty much comes down to finally, fiiiinally assessing my skin type properly (sensitive and combined) and then finding products that work for my skin, rather than expecting what works for everyone else, to also work for me.
Does that make sense?
I wrote a skincare routine post way way back (many centuries ago) about Pond’s Cold Cream Cleanser, which I am still using and loving, but I recently started looking for a couple of lighter options for morning cleansing.
The heavy richness of Pond’s is perfect for night-time repairs, and it’s excellent at removing my makeup, but it’s just a bit too much for mornings when A) I’m in a rush, and B) I have to put my makeup on shortly after.
I’ve tried a couple of other products (some bought, some samples) but everything just seems to either irritate, or dry my skin out completely.
Well, The Body Shop products I’ve been testing out are from their Aloe Vera range, which is specifically geared for sensitive skin, and they’ve all been working pretty great for me so far!
The Body Shop Aloe Vera Gentle Face Wash* is a super light foaming wash, easy to apply and does exactly what I need it to: it doesn’t sting, it doesn’t dry my face out and it leaves my skin feeling all fresh and ready to go.
It’s a bit too light for removing heavy makeup, and they do recommend not getting it anywhere near your eyes, so mascara removal is a definite no. But for a quick and easy morning cleanse? This is perfect.
Next, The Body Shop Aloe Vera Calming Toner*. I haven’t actually used a toner for quite a few months. I used to use Simple’s toner but felt like it wasn’t actually doing much, therefore it was kind of a waste of money.
The Body Shop Aloe Vera toner is pretty good. I’ve been using it after I’ve taking my makeup off at night, just to clear away the last traces of dirt, and it seems to be working well! It feels light and refreshing which is nice and, again, it didn’t sting or aggravate/dry my skin out at all.
The standout product from my pack is, for me, the The Body Shop Aloe Vera Protective Serum*.
I have a lovely facial oil I use at night under my moisturiser (review of my night-time products coming next week!) but, again, it’s just too heavy for early mornings. The serum is of a liquid-y consistency, it glides on easily and sinks in fast which is GREAT as cutting down skincare time is always a must for me. Ain’t nobody got time for extra complications at 6:30 in the morning!
The Body Shop Aloe Vera Soothing Day Cream* goes on next, a very light cream that sinks in straight away. My skin feels lovely and hydrated after, but it doesn’t have SPF in it which is a bit of a huge downside for me.
My last product is The Body Shop Aloe Vera Soothing Gel*. The best use I’ve found for this, is on days when I’m having a hormonal acne breakout. I pop it on as a sort-of face mask overnight (over my serum/moisturiser) and let it work it’s soothing magic on those horrible under-skin bumps that hurt like hell…
I pretty much always wake up with it feeling a lot better, with reduced redness and inflammation. So three cheers for that!
*All the reviewed products in this post were gifted to me.
As always, if I didn’t love it, I wouldn’t write about it! :)