Thursday, 30 April 2015

Review / Docteur Renaud 7-in-1 Apricot BB Eye Cream

As a new mummy, my dark circles have gone from bad to worst; apart from the chronic tiredness, I'm also super busy with my new bundle of joy and I have limited time to dedicate to my beauty regime or make up application.
Consequently, I've also developed quite dry skin in the eye area and my old long lasting concealer is just highlighting these problems, making things worst.

So I was looking for a new product that would act both as skincare and make up and I came across the Docteur Renaud 7-in-1 Apricot BB Eyes* which sounded just the perfect multitasking product for my hectic routine.

The pencil is super practical but I prefer to take and apply the product with my finger (for hygienic purposes); the creamy and soft formula is very easy to blend, doesn't drag on the skin and doesn't settle in fine lines.
The Universal Beige shade is suitable for most skintones and it perfectly camouflages dark circles; admittedly, this is not a full coverage concealer but it really brightens the eye area and adds radiance. The final result is a dramatic improvement with a natural finish.
The shea butter helps deliver moisturization and maintain elasticity to further reduce signs of ageing and tiredness; apricot butter is comforting and has restorative properties, it's rich in essential fatty acids to aid repair, nourish and protect the skin.  

Docteur Renaud is renowned for using organic flower, fruit and vegetable extracts to deliver both health and nutrition to the skin. Have you tried their products yet?  

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Pregnancy / Bodycare

I went off beauty products straight away at the beginning of the pregnancy; mainly the different scents didn’t agree with my morning sickness but I also couldn’t stand the feeling of the products on my face :S
I still tried to keep up my routine to a minimum with cleansing in the mornings and nights - I must admit that I skipped few nights - but hopefully not much long-term damage has been done to my skin. I basically didn’t wear any make up at all – I just couldn’t cope with removing it at the end of the day.

I did was very consistent with moisturizing my enlarging body, tho. I used an oil every night after a shower on wet skin and then sealed up the hydration with a bump butter/cream... and I'm happy to report that I didn't end up with any stretch mark at all. Yay!!! :)
I chose products specific for pregnancy to try and avoid nasty ingredients and brands that I already trusted.
At about 20 weeks, I stepped up the bump routine to twice a day and used a moisturizer in the morning too.

Oil-wise, I tried the followings: 
My favourite was the Weleda Stretch Mark Massage Oil that felt like a proper oil; both Sanctuary Mum To Be Stretch Mark Oil and Burt’s Bees Mama Bee Nourishing Body Oil felt too watery.
Although, the Weleda smells pretty herbaly and the Burt's Bees was the one that I tolerated the most with a hint of citrus.

For the Body Butters – 
I loved both the Sanctuary Mum To Be Collagen Boosting Body Butter and Burt’s Bees Belly Butter; they both sank into the skin quickly and the only difference is that the Sanctuary is quite heavily scented but it didn’t bother me. They also felt really refreshing on the skin which can be a relief, if you experience itchiness.

What bothered me instead was the smell of the Mum & Me Bump Stretch Mark Cream: I only tried a sample and then didn’t purchase for that reason.
I found the Palmer’s Massage Lotion for Stretch Marks pretty good too but too thick for the bottle and ended up throwing away half of the sample; real shame because it was a cheap alternative.
I didn't like the Palmer's Tummy Butter for Stretch Marks at all; wayyyy too thick, like a proper butter - just too greasy for my liking.

Have you tried any of these yourself? Which products do you swear by during pregnancy?

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Introducing / CÎME Skincare

I've recently come across CÎME, a certified organic skincare range from Belgium. The brand is the brain-child of 2 friends - Isabel & Anke - and Anke's father - Walter - expert in organic plant extracts.
Their products are also particularly suitable for sensitive skin, because free of synthetic perfumes, parabens, phenoxyethanol, propylene glycol and also cruelty free and vegan.

The active ingredients are sourced from plants that grow in the Himalayas; at over 3000 metres, plants are subject to extreme conditions - temperature changes, lack of oxygen, UV radiations - and develop coping mechanisms that enhance the potency of the active ingredients.

CÎME Rosee de Roses* is a micellar water that removes make-up and acts as a toner too.
Micellar waters are an essential step in my cleansing routine and I have tried few different ones - This is definitely going in my Top 5! 
It's very gentle yet effective and has a calming rose scent - thanks to the rose extract that contains.
Why Roses? Essential oil of rose is effective in counteracting the ageing process, is softening and purifying.
  I love the slim, aluminium bottle and it can be sprayed directly on the skin or applied using a cotton wool ball.

CÎME Daisy Delight* is a brightening moisturiser that can be used day & night. It is suitable for all skin type and it has a very light and non-greasy formula. 
It feels lovely and fresh on the skin and absorbs instantly; it has a slightly delicate floral scent but nothing too overpowering. 
I really like this face cream! It performs well, feels great on the skin and it's Organic Cosmetic Certified, with 99% of ingredients from natural origin.
Why Daisies? Daisy flowers and Edelweiss - attenuate dark spots and balance hyperpigmentation, revealing a brighter and radiant skin.

Have you heard of this brand yet?

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Pregnancy / Birth Story

Let's start from the end, I guess.
Lara was delivered through c-section which is a bit of anti-climax really.
Anyway, here it goes...
On 20th of January around 4:40pm - I was resting in bed, dozing off... when my waters broke; luckily, I managed to rush to the toilet and save the mattress. I remember how people told me that it's not like in the movies, that you probably just drip some water or your waters may not even break... and surely enough, mine went big style!
I immediately phoned the maternity assessment that told me to go in to check 'if' my waters really broke; then, I phone my husband - which was in work - and told him to come home.
At this point, I was calmer than expected. This was 2 weeks earlier than my due date, so I quickly checked my hospital bags and then sat on the toilet waiting for the hubby with buckets and buckets pouring out of me. ;)
I didn't have any contraction so, once at the hospital, I made my way to the maternity assessment and Richard went to park the car.
I didn't spend much time there, around an hour: they put few needles in my arms, whilst monitoring the baby and waiting for the labour ward to take me to my room. 
I have to say the birthing suite was lovely - the light was dimmed down, it was warm and clean, I had my private bathroom... but what I noticed straight away was the wee baby table in the corner with the tiniest hat waiting for my baby.
I was pretty relaxed and  - since I still had no contractions - I was going to be induced.
My midwife was in her 50s, lovely chatty lady and I remember her joking "I wonder if she will be born today or tomorrow".
At around 8pm and minutes (!!!!) before getting induced, she was going to give me an examination and she started with my belly.
She suddenly said "ummm, I think that's a head", touching the top of my belly, where the bum is supposed to be.
My husband & I, nearly in unison, said that it was not possible and we were positive that it was the bum!
Hehe, the lovely lady must have sensed how strong we felt that she said that she was probably wrong but she wanted to get a doctor to double-check; 2 female doctors came with an ultrasound machine... and surely enough, she was breech!!!
I felt a bit of shock! My bloody community midwife had been telling me for the past 3 months that that was a nice, round bum.
I was also pretty annoyed - she fuc**d up big time!
As a matter of fact, we went to see her for a routine check that same morning and she still didn't notice what was going on.

Anyway, I didn't have much of a choice and had to have a c-section.
I really didn't want a cesarean, never had an operation before or spent the  night in the hospital. An amount of doctors, anaesthesiologists started coming into my room, asking me question which I replied to but it's all kind of a blur... my baby was definitely going to be born tonight!
Luckily the ward was quite so I was next - my midwife put me in a hospital gown and then we all walked to the theatre.
Everyone was extremely lovely, supportive and reassuring - I was a bit tachycardic (considering the situation) and I felt really well looked after. I had a spinal and then Richard joined me, sitting by my head. 
I felt the operation was so long! In actual facts, it was probably only 20 minutes from when they started 'til when she was born... but I was waiting for a wee cry and it felt like forever.
I could also feel all the pulling and stretching which wasn't too pleasant but not sore.
I remember looking up and the assistant anaesthesiologist was bending forward the screen to look at my belly and she was smiling... and Lara was born!
I didn't manage to get a glimpse when they took her to the table to get her checked and cleaned, but I could hear her and that was all that mattered.
Said assistant was fantastic: she grabbed my husband phone and started taking pictures (and videos!!!) for us. Awesome!
Few minutes later, we were introduced for the first time - they lied her, all bundled up, on Richard's arm next to me.
I was dying to see her: she looked a bit squashed, crusty, with a tiny bloody tear at the corned of her right eye... and pouting! :D
After they finished stitching me up, they placed her on my chest and wheeled me to the recovery room which was empty... a quiet night indeed.
I was there for only an hour and we started with the breastfeeding practise; she latched on after few attempts but she didn't seem too convinced or simply pretty tired.

Finally, I was moved to the maternity ward around midnight where I had to say goodbye to my husband for the night.
I had never spent a night in a hospital before and was a bit apprehensive on how I would cope.
Instead, I felt extremely calm, content and serene... and she was there - my wee girl - staring back at me thought the crib and there was nowhere else that I'd rather be!

How I feel about the c-section: annoyed that my midwife fuc*ed up; she apologised afterwards and, considering that all went well, all is forgive
The c-section per se was easy but the recovery was a bitch; caring for a newborn is demanding enough, without having had major abdominal surgery; it's frustrating and sore and makes nursing that much more challenging.

Feel free to ask any question or to share your experience - and leave the link in the comments!

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