Thursday, 31 May 2012

The Great British Beauty Giveaway courtesy of NutriBeauty - GIVEAWAY CLOSED

In celebration of all things British and Beauty over the Jubilee weekend - NutriBeauty are offering their customers a whopping 20% off of everything on their site from Thursday 31st through to Tuesday 5th June (inclusive). If you are as yet unfamiliar with all things NutriBeauty - go take a look - you won't be disappointed.
Trust Le Mouth.
On top of that, readers of Beauty Mouth have the opportunity to win NutriBeauty's Top 10 picks of the very best of British. Yes. Win all ten of the top 10.
Regular readers will spot a few of my firm favourites mixed in with some amazing up and coming brands.

Natural Empathy Beautifully British Limited Edition Hand and Body Lotion - £15.00
I'd be tempted to keep this unopened for the packaging alone.

Deborah Mitchell Bee Venom Mask - £65.00
The infamous mask that started the Bee Venom craze and also facialist to *the* Royal clients before a *certain* wedding last year.

Neal's Yard Wild Rose Beauty Balm - £35.25
My staple 'go-to' balm - every beauty cupboard should have one. Now's your chance.

Suti Rejuvenate Organic Face Oil - £28.00
Love Suti - great products, great results, great women, Great Britain (see what I did there?).

Suti Rose Water - £18.00

Viridian Ultimate Beauty Complex - £15.90
Supplements are a must. Viridian are amongst the best.

Pai Chamomile &Rosehip Sensitive Skin Cream - £22.00
Love Pai, recommend them every week in the Clinic.

Pai Comfrey & Calendula Calming Body Cream - £22.00

Spirit of Beauty Facial Cleansing Gel - £19.95
LOVE this cleanser, haven't blogged it yet - which is ridiculous and overdue - because the pot is nearly empty - so will get on that asap!

Beauty Works West YOUTH - £64.00
I take these every single day without fail, have blogged about them before and probably will again. Immense. Especially if you're over 35/40 and having trouble finding your Mojo. And your skin tone!

Fancy that little lot? I know. So do I.

To be in with a chance of winning:

Simply leave your comment below naming your favourite British Beauty product from NutriBeauty's site - or what you would most like to try and why.

Make sure to leave a contact @twitter or an email address in your comment.

To receive your 20% discount simply enter BritishBeauty20 when prompted on the NutriBeauty site.

Thanks NutriBeauty and Happy Jubilee Weekend everyone!
T & C's.
Giveaway ends Tuesday 5th June.
Winner will be picked Wednesday 6th June.
One entry per person.
Winner will be picked by
Prize will be sent directly to winner by NutriBeauty.
Giveaway value is £305.10 - prize is non-transferable.
No cash alternative is offered.
Beauty Mouth can take no responsibility for lost packages.

Sunday, 27 May 2012


It's that time again. Where I blackmail beg  ask politely for details about the upcoming TSV of one of my favourite brands in order to give you a heads up on the latest ridiculous offer available on QVC.

I know there is no need to mention Liquid Gold at this stage. Of course the TSV has Liquid Gold in it. Was there ever a product more aptly named? 

I digress. 

The Alpha-H TSV going live at Midnight - NOW - is...


And the price?

*Insert Joan Rivers joke*: What's my husband's idea of foreplay?.... BRACE YOURSELF JOANIE:

£34.96 + £4.95 P&P.

And the value?

Utterly ridonculous.

Age Delay Intensive Night Treatment is worth £37.95 in the high street, £35 at QVC

Eye Complex is worth £34.50 in the high st, £31.50 at QVC

Balancing Cleanser is worth £23.00 in the high st, £20 at QVC

Liquid Gold - ml for ml = £15.75 high street, £14.25 QVC

Total: £111.20 high st, £100.75 at QVC

And again:

TSV price £34.96 + £4.95 P&P

Yeah. I know. Me too.

Shows at Midnight, 1am, 8am, 9am, 12pm, 3pm, 6pm and 10pm.

Also available here.

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Clinic on Thursday - CLINIC IS CLOSED

Morning All!

The Clinic is open - could I ask a couple of things?

Can you please contact me here if you have re-commented on last week's Clinic or have emailed me and are still awaiting a response? Apologies - but as I know you'll understand it's a lot to keep up with.

And I'm sorry to reiterate but please don't email me your queries unless I specifically ask you to on the blog (i.e. for further information) - if only 1% of my (lovely) readers from last week emailed me, I'd still be dealing with 160 emails - all of which are very detailed and take a lot of thought - on top of the Clinic, the blog, full-time work and a very large family. 
All of which I adore and am blessed with - I'm not complaining - BUT - I have to stop somewhere.

Thank you for your continued support - this site has opened so many doors for me and I am very grateful to you all.

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Fortnum & Mason Summer Scents aka Private Perfume Party - Tuesday 29th May

I watched an interview with Michael Winner over the weekend where he said that the English were on the whole, dreadful at Customer Service. He was referring to restaurants in particular - you know - the allegedly upmarket ones where you are greeted not with 'Good Morning Sir/Madam', but 'Have you got a reservation?' 
In Winner's words, 'What's THAT got to do with anything?'

In department store terms the same thing occurs. There are certain stores in Central London where you are greeted by a security guard giving you the once over.

And then there is Fortnum & Mason. *insert audible sigh* I love F&M. Yes there are other wonderful stores in London. But here, the staff are the best dressed and the most polite in town - and no apologies from me on that score. Customer Service I KNOW. 
F&M are unbeatable.

I have regular business meetings in the Fountain and the Parlour (waves to Alex), both busy, both with amazing service and delicious food. I have digressed completely - but if you have never been - and think of it as the home of tea and jam and biscuits and her Maj, think again. Do yourself a favour. Go.

*inserts totally gratuitous picture of one of the Treatment Rooms - more of which to come at a later date*

If you happen to be around next Tuesday 29th, Fortnums are holding an amazing evening of perfumes, discovery and interaction that is a must for fragrance lovers.

With Brand Ambassadors from Creed, Caron, Guerlain, Clive Christian (go smell 'X' *dies*), Illuminum (Kate Middleton's fragrance of choice on her wedding day) and an appearance from Azagury himself, it promises to be an eventful evening.

For those in attendance there is also the little matter of this hamper full of fragrance and worth over £1000 up for grabs. 
(Apologies for the picture - I fired it off today after a meeting - and the ginormous Guerlain bottle is display - calm down!)

Fortnums, fragrance, champagne, hampers. Oh to be an Englishmanwoman  in the Summertime.

Tickets are priced £15.00 and are available by calling 0845 602 5694.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Kim Kardashian True Reflection Launch

Sometimes you need a little fun. When Kim Kardashian rolled in to town last week to launch her latest fragrance 'True Reflection', I was invited to the launch party and figured it would be 'an experience'. That it was.
A word on the fragrance - The Kardashians are not stupid. Givaudan are behind their fragrances and that is what genuinely sets them apart from other 'celeb' fragrances. They actually smell quite lovely - as in 'you would really wear them' lovely. In short, if I was making a fragrance, I would probably go to Givaudan first.  This is gardenia-heavy. So for me, a winner.

The event was a little packed and a lot hot - and the view was restricted. By the time she arrived, the surge forward, along with her 'petite' (very small) height meant we couldn't see anything.
So I climbed on to a sofa (as you do) to have a gander and it was at this point that I turned to Priya and Zara and said 'What the F**K am I DOING?? I'm a 42 year old woman. JESUS CHRIST.'
Anyway. We soon pushed everyone else out of the way because I'm 5'11 made our way to the VIP area where we met the lady herself.

Very sweet, extremely small and with a face full of make up that she didn't need (I did a full on skin inspection while she was saying something about flowers and fragrance - as you do) - she was very polite. She seemed as if she was just going through the motions to be honest but if I was plonked in a room full of people standing on sofas to get a look of you I'd probably be over it too.
She did, however, respond very graciously to my request for a quick head shot to send to my daughter who was at a sleepover and not happy that Mummy was meeting KK without her.

So: good quality fragrance that I am actually wearing, a picture for the babygirl who quickly became the star of the sleepover - and a Wagamama's with this lot:

When bloggers go wrong.
True Reflection is available at Debenhams now and launches nationwide in June.
*very obviously a PR sample
*non-affiliate link

Sunday, 20 May 2012

April in the life of the blog.

(Yes I know its late) 

Behind the scenes of the What's in My Handbag? shoot.

Max's first time at Meat Liquor.

My lily addiction is out of control.

One of my gorgeous nieces.

Max totally busted.

My kind of store. (No offence intended to the Irish. Including my own family. Obviously)
Enough said.
Loved this. As you can see.

About bloody time.
The other two ladies of the house.

Glad they're back on UK soil.
Quick visit to Monaco.
Loving this brand.

Got these out. Then put them away.

SO amazing.

Used a LOT.

At-home facial.

Great windows. Shame the clothes come in two sizes: foetus and five year old.

Anndddd Flannelgate in the Daily Mail. Amusing stuff.

Friday, 18 May 2012

Jo Malone Velvet Rose & Oud - Cologne Intense

I wasn't surprised when Jo Malone originally released the Cologne Intense range in 2010. In a way it was more 'What took them so long?'.
Every Spring, London - and London retail - is inundated by visitors from the Middle East escaping the intense heat for somewhere more amenable. I've blogged about Arab Season before - this range was without doubt designed with the Middle East in mind. My favourite of the existing range is the beautiful Rose Water and Vanilla.

Well, that may all change - this arrived this morning- and my GOD is it good.

Velvet Rose & Oud is on counter in June as a Limited Edition to the range. Damask Rose, Oud, Clove and Praline come together to give the most intense, sultry fragrance that in my opinion, JML have done so far. As per the ethos of JML, they give various scenarios for combining with other fragrances - but this, to my mind, is perfect on its own.

Available June 2012 priced £95.00 from all Jo Malone stockists.

*PR Sample

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Elemis Pro-Collagen Advanced Eye Treatment

Three years in the making, Elemis launch a new addition to their ridiculously successful Pro-Collagen range this Summer.

Advanced Eye Treatment is designed to aid fine lines and wrinkles and  moisturise and hydrate. Yes please. I have a sample so will report back when I've had time to use it properly.

On counters 1st July - £39.00.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Cheat Sheet - Acne

One of the biggest concerns in the Clinic seems to be problems related to acne/bad spots and 'raised red bumps'. I have taken my time with this cheat sheet because of all the skin problems out there, this one causes the most upset/depression/stress and I don't take it lightly.

When I turned 40 a couple of years ago I experienced adult onset acne - along with food allergies.
Out of nowhere. I mention this because it it is increasingly obvious that the same is happening to a lot of women. I had near-perfect skin for 40 years and then suddenly, a face full of red, angry cysts. My GP put me straight on anti-biotics and I, in my desperation, took them unquestioningly.

Once I realised that the acne was more than likely hormonal, here to stay and that the anti-biotics were doing me no favours, I decided to fix it myself. And I more or less have. The reason I am giving you so much background is because you need to do the same for your skin.

There is no magical 'cure' for acne. There are different types, yes, but no one-dose-fits-all cure. So do read the below - but bear in mind that acne is different for everyone. You may have one type - or 3 types.
You need to know your skin, your body, your state of mind, your 'system' inside out to truly see results.

I'm using this as a 'skeleton' to build on. I'm posting it in place of the Clinic so when you ask your questions - if the answers are something that will help others - I'll add them to the body of this Cheat Sheet. Make it interactive - but more importantly - get as broad a spectrum of questions and answers/tips that we can.

I'm not touching on scarring yet - I'm assuming that the people who are reading this have active acne - in which case you are a little limited in what you can do for bad scarring.

Types/causes of acne:

  • Hormones - just starting periods, just finishing periods, peri-menopause, menopause (all of them), for boys - raging androgen
    Can cause over production of oil, slow shedding of dead skin cells, increases in the mount of androgen in your system - all creating the perfect breeding ground for acne

  • Bacteria - Propionibacterium Acnes is the bacteria that gives our friend its name - all it needs is the perfect environment to spread

  • Inflammation - illness, foods, stress - a system fighting illness is inflamed on its own, add medication and you are doubling your potential problems (not that that's your fault!), foods can cause inflammation (especially food allergies) and stress always causes inflammation - again, all breeding grounds for acne

  • Sensitivities - allergies, reactions to products, reactions to foods/environment

  • Looking at the above you may see where your skin fits in - and why anti-biotics just don't work for some people.

    Myths and Old Wives Tales:
    It seems that once something has been said in a glossy mag, heard on tv - or both - it becomes the Law. Sad but true. And not helpful to those of us with real problems that we want to fix!
    • Acne is caused by dirty skin. Not true. There is a massive difference between bacteria and dirt. Over-washing your face destroys the acid mantle that protects your skin, makes an alkaline environment, makes your acne worse and your skin a dry, dull, sore breeding ground.
    • You can 'dry up' spots. Not true. A spot is a mixture of oil, inflammation, bacteria and dead skin cells. No water in that list. All you are doing is drying the surrounding area in the hope that it will make the spot look smaller. What it actually does it put the spot on its own 'look at ME' platform.
    • You can use toothpaste or nappy cream to spot-treat acne. I cannot EVEN.
      A one-off spot may have its redness taken down - temporarily - by applying one of the above. If acne could be fixed by Oral-B or Sudocrem all of our problems would be solved. YAY! *jazz hands*
      Dude. Stop putting toothpaste and bum cream on your face.

    Things that may help:
    Below are some of the things that have helped myself, friends, clients and readers of this blog. It is not a definitive list and is only suggestions.
    They may not work for you, they may work brilliantly - unfortunately there is no perfect recipe. If you are on serious medication speak to your consultant before supplementing. 
    • Avoid mineral oils when cleansing. Natural oils are better for the skin. They just are. (See one exception later on in the list)
    • Avoid too much alcohol in products. A 'tingle' is ok. A 'burning' is not. Products where the main ingredient listed is alcohol will dry out the surface of your skin, destroy the acid mantle and make the perfect breeding ground. However: alcohol is sometimes a necessary evil for suspending things like glycolic acid in a solution - where they would normally not work as well.
      (See Liquid Gold as an example - the glycolic benefits override the alcohol) It can be confusing but its a case-by-case basis.
    • Avoid soaps and foaming washes. These break down the acid mantle of your skin (think: armour) and make your skin a 10 on the 1-10 acid/alkaline scale. Remember litmus paper from science classes? Again - the perfect breeding ground.
    • Don't pick red cysts. A whitehead can be popped in the correct manner (see previous cheat sheets), a cyst is going nowhere and will always, always prevail if you battle it. And then it will scar. Just to teach you who is boss.
    • Don't completely strip your skin of oil and moisture. An acne skin that sticks solely to foaming cleansers and oil-free products is nearly always - always - reddened with inflammation and sensitivity. Thus making more work for yourself.
    • Treat your skin gently and with respect. You know what I mean. Abusing it with harsh products and getting angry with it - like it's a different person - will make it worse. Your skin belongs to you. Don't try and disown it when it needs you.
    • Cleanse with good quality oils and balm cleansers. There is absolutely no reason to avoid oil when you have acne. Again:
      There is absolutely no reason to avoid oil in cleansing when you have acne. Mineral oil, avoid? YES. Good, light, plant-derived oils? - no. They don't clog pores, they nourish the skin you are now pledging to take care of and they do not break you out. Cheap, nasty, mineral oil used in heavy formulations may break you out when you are cleansing, not good oils. Check labels. Avoid paraffin, paraffin liquidum, mineral oil in ingredient listings.
    • Use topical exfoliants. Acids used topically help alleviate blocked pores, dead skin cells, trapped hair follicles and reduce your acid mantle to the lower end of the scale - usually around a 3/4 - which is in layman's terms, strengthening your first line of defence to the acne. Think glycolic and salicylic.
    • You can use products like benzoyl peroxide, found in spot treatments, to topically treat bad acne spots. It can penetrate the pore and kill off the bacteria specific to acne, but I prefer the acids in the step above. Sulfur is more commonly used, but a word of warning - in my experience, both can be drying to the skin in high %'s. Go easy.
    • Hydrate your skin and consider that it might need oil in places. You can have acne in areas and be really dry/dehydrated in others.
    • Consider supplementation. I have no doubt in my mind that consuming large quantities of fish oil has saved my face. And it's not just me. People I know have had the same response. It works for acne OR psoriasis and eczema - so if you have any of those - or all - I would definitely recommend. I take anything between 3000 and 10,000mg a day depending on the day, my skin and circumstances. If you are vegetarian you can use flax - but fish is much better. (Sorry!)
    • Probiotics are a must. Especially if you are on anti-biotics. Your skin is the first place to show anything going on in the gut. Keep your stomach/intestines as strong as possible. Go for the highest dosage you can find - and remember with probiotics - they degrade very quickly so if it says 2 billion on the packet - by the time it gets through processing, packaging, delivery and shelf it could have gone down to 1 billion - literally halved. I always take double the RDA. 
    • Avoid moisturisers with shea butter. Yes its natural but its harder than most oils for the skin to break down and thus tends to clogs pores and give you nice whiteheads.
      Buy moisturisers with water as the main ingredient for day. You can use appropriate oils and balms at night.
    Unfortunately there really is no definitive list of foods that cause acne.
    There is however, awareness of foods that cause inflammation in the system (and therefore the skin) and would thus best be avoided:
    • Sugar
      The worst. And it's in everything. Avoid fizzy drinks, fruit juice (OJ breaks me out almost instantaneously), pastries, condiments such as ketchup, salad cream, brown sauce and steak sauce (cries). Get into the habit of reading labels. Fructose, sucrose, maltose, golden syrup, dextrose - all sugar. 
    • White foods
      Everyone laughs when I say it - but Mother Nature made very little white. Avoid white foods. They have, for the most part, been completely bastardized buy the food industry. Bread, pasta, cereals, sugar and cakes - if they are white - they are not real food. Think how fast your car would break down if you used 'petrol substitute'.
    • Red Meat
      Red meat is medically proven to cause inflammation. Not just of the skin - it has been linked to cancer, heart disease, obesity and most inflammatory diseases. This includes beef, lamb, venison, veal, pork and all of the subdivisions such as bacon, sausage, sandwich meat, salami etc..
      If you eat red meat, try and cut back and eat the best organic quality available. It is less likely to be loaded with hormones that aggravate your acne.
      Eat white meat or fish - especially oily fish like salmon. If you eat meat it should swim or fly. 
    • Dairy
      We are the only species that drinks the milk of another species. It's not natural and you don't need it. But again, it's in everything. Dairy contains hormones that can alter our endocrine system and contribute to acne. That includes cheese (cries, again). If you eat/drink dairy go for organic full fat. (I use skimmed, but in the last couple of years this has been shown to be the worst type to drink, which is typical..!)
    • Fried foods/bad fats
      Avoid all margarines, corn oil, sunflower oil, cottonseed oil, grapeseed oil, trans fats and hydrogenated oils. This obviously means by association you avoid crisps, chips (french fries for US readers) and deep fried anything. Use olive or macadamia oil.

    A word on anti-biotics. 
    If you are taking them and they haven't 'done anything' - something I hear a lot on the Clinic - stop taking them (in the appropriate manner).
    They are bad for your system, cause stomach problems and make you massively susceptible to severe sun damage. Why some GPs insist on giving out repeat prescriptions for skins that are not responding to them is beyond me. It's just crazy.
    If your acne is really bad - ask for a referral to a hospital consultant/specialist unit - but I do mean really bad - covering your entire face, possibly back, scalp, chest etc - a few hormonal spots once a month, while causing you to break out the heavy duty concealer - is not on a par with the suffering of people with the severest cases.
    Ask for that referral - and if you don't get one - pay to see a dermatologist! Dr Sam Bunting would be my first port of call.

    Havaianas and Mavala

    Havaianas and Mavala are doing their bit to save us all from the dreaded trotter feet this Summer by offering a free shape and polish to all customers purchasing a pair of Slim Havaianas at John Lewis Oxford Street.

    The Pedi Bar is available from Saturday 15th May until 5th June. You may need to book at busy times - but if you're planning on buying a pair anyway - and live in London - do us all a favour and spare us the trotter!

    Tuesday, 15 May 2012

    Emma Hardie TSV - Forewarned is forearmed.

    Regular readers will know of my addiction to Emma Hardie's Moringa Balm Cleanser. I also love the night cream.

    Emma Hardie's TSV goes live at Midnight. NOW. 

    What's in it? 

    1 x full size Moringa Balm *joy* (normal price £34.00)
    1 x 50ml Night Cream *scream* (value £28.00)
    1 x Lighter Hydrating Lotion Moisturiser - perfect for upcoming months (normal price £38.00)
    1 x trial size of Skin Plumping Serum (value - by this stage - WHO CARES???)

    All this: for the frankly, stupid price of £39.96 +4.95 p&p.

    Also available online - Don't hang about.

    *does dancing leaps of joy*

    QVC digital channels
    • Sky: 640
    • Freeview: 16
    • Virgin TV: 740
    • Freesat: 800

    Elemis Limited Edition Papaya Enzyme Peel

    As brands go - very few have an entire offering of masks which are all not only amazing, but must-haves. Elemis is one of them. Exotic Cream Moisturising, Fruit Active Rejuvenating and Herbal Lavender Repair are all brilliant. The Gentle Rose Exfoliator is the only one my mum will use on her medicated lupus skin due to its gentleness.

    The Papaya Enzyme Peel is to my mind, the most gentle of the masks. It's designed to regenerate tired and sensitive skin and does so without the rubbing off/sloughing off stage - the part that most people find irritating due to the friction caused.

    To celebrate its 10 years Elemis commissioned Laura Oakes, a British (obvs) born designer to create limited packaging showcasing the key ingredients - namely papaya and pineapple from Africa. Being Elemis - a brand with a history of great CSR and charitable initiatives - they have linked up with SOCO - a charity dedicated to alleviating poverty, malnutrition and aiding the underprivileged around the globe.

    So for every PEP sold, Elemis are donating £1.07/$1.75/1.34E to provide one '5 in 1' Pentavalent vaccine to immunise a child in Africa against diptheria, tetanus, whooping cough, hepatitis b and haemophilus influenza type b.

    Elemis are aiming to provide 20,000 vaccines.

    From 1st June you can go help them do that. And help your face at the same time.

    111SKIN - Opportunity to meet the Founder.

    Next Wednesday, 23rd May - you have the opportunity to talk to the founder of 111Skin, cosmetic surgeon Dr Yannis Alexandrides and bombard him with your questions. Okay - maybe not bombard, but still, do have a go.

    Tickets are £25 redeemable against any 111 Skin product purchased on the day and appointments are available between 1-3pm and 4-6pm at Harrods.

    To reserve your place contact or call 0845 222 5111(ask for Claire).