Alternative title for this post: ‘Things I’ve Been Feeling Guilty About Using But Not Writing About, So Here They Are in a Handy Roundup Post: Enjoy!”
That sounds just a wee bit clumsy, though, so I’m just going to stick to ‘Blogger Mailbag’ – a.k.a. all those things that drop through your door unexpectedly, making your day feel a little bit like Christmas, even when it turns out to be a tube of whitening toothpaste, or something you have to Google to work out what it actually IS. But I’m getting head of myself here: here are some of the things that have appeared on my desk lately – and, for those of you who care about these things, please note that these are all PR samples…
Blow-drying my hair is my most hated beauty-related tasks. (Well, that and dyeing my eyelashes: ever since my beloved Dyelash changed its formula, and adopted the philosophy, ‘Why make it easy, when we can make it really, really hard?’ that’s been an absolute PITA, seriously…) I find applying makeup quite soothing, but blow-drying hair is so mind-numbingly boring to me that it always ends up taking twice as long as it should, purely because I have to keep on taking ‘boredom breaks’ to check my phone every minute or so. GOD.
Anyway, I have long hair and a lot of it, and I use a LOT of heat on it, whether it be to blow-dry it, or to style it. I use a heat protector anyway, so when I realise that this one was promising to reduce the drying time, I was all over it. But DOES it reduce the drying time, I hear you ask? Well, not noticeably: I mean, it’s not like your hair will dry in 30 seconds flat when you use this, as awesome as that would be. In a bid to be all scientific about things, though, I diligently set the timer on my phone to time myself blow-drying my hair with the Quick Dry Potion and without it. That really IS as exciting as my life gets, people: I really wish I was joking.
The result? My hair dried about a minute and a half faster when I used the potion: so it’s not life-changing, by any means, but it did exactly what it said on the
tin bottle, so I can’t complain. There wasn’t really a way to test the heat protection claim, unfortunately, because I wasn’t willing to attempt to damage my hair, just to see if this would protect it, but my hair didn’t seem any MORE damaged (in fact, it didn’t seem damaged at all) after using it, so I’m going to assume it delivers on that front, too.
A nurturing and replenishing cream designed specifically to target “distressed” skin, this was honestly a little bit wasted on me, because I’m just not sure my skin is particularly “distressed” right now. I can’t tell you whether this really does repair what its makers diplomatically describe as “troublesome” skin (My skin must be the only part of my body that ISN’T ‘troublesome’…), then, but I can tell you that it’s very pleasant to use: lightly fragranced, easily absorbed, and although this particular version is designed for the body, I just got up and applied some to my hands, which do, indeed, feel soft and nourished as a result – and not remotely ‘troublesome’.
This is the item I had to Google when it arrived: I’d been seeing these things all over Instagram, but I was still none the wiser about what it was, or why I needed one. As it turns out, it’s a sonic cleaning brush, designed to make sure your face gets a really deep cleanse every morning and night. I was sent two sample cleansers to use with it, but it will work with any cleanser: you basically just apply your cleanser as usual, then dampen the rubber bristles of the Luna Play, switch it on, and then gently move it over your face in a circular motion, for around a minute.
This is pretty fun to use, and it feels like you’re getting a quick face massage, as well as cleansing your skin. After using it, my skin feels really, really clean, in a way that’s hard to explain, but different from the effect I’d get with my usual cleansing routine. In fact, using this has really made me aware of how slapdash I was being about cleansing before, so I’m paying more attention to my routine, even on the days I don’t use this. I’ve only been using this for a couple of weeks but had started to see an improvement in the texture of my skin after just a few days. The charge in the device apparently lasts for 7 months, so hopefully by the time it runs out, I’ll be looking ten years younger. At least.
This was the only one of these products that proved to be a bit of a miss for me. I was really excited to try it, because having spent a small fortune on my teeth over the years, I like to try to keep them looking their best, and I don’t really care if that means I end up looking like Ross in THAT episode of Friends.
This, however, is a three-step process, and that’s where it fell down for me. First, you brush on the activator serum, and spend the next 30 seconds with your lips carefully pulled back from your teeth, so as not to inadvertently rub it off. I did NOT enjoy this, but figured it was a small price to pay for pearly white teeth. (I once used a whitening kit which had to be left on overnight, with your teeth in two giant retainer-like moulds: now THAT was annoying…) Next, you repeat the process with the Activator Serum: so far, so good.
It was at step there that it all started to go wrong for me. Now, step three is simply a toothpaste… which you apply just like any other toothpaste. This is, in theory, so simple you could do it in your sleep: the problem is you have to wait at least 20 minutes after completing the first two steps… and, honestly, I would just straight-up forget about it. Almost every single time. I’d get through steps one and two, think, ‘OK, I have twenty minutes to kill before step 3 – I’ll just check my email!’ and then, the next thing I knew, it would be five hours later, and I STILL wouldn’t have gotten round to step three.
(I don’t mean by this that I wouldn’t clean my teeth at all on those days, obviously: I’m not THAT bad. No, I’d always clean my teeth as usual, as soon as I got up, and then use this product later in the day: or NOT use it later in the day, as the case may be.)
Because of this, I never really got into a proper routine with this, despite having it in my bathroom cabinet for quite a few weeks. On the days I DID mange to complete all three steps, I didn’t notice a change in my teeth, but I suspect you’d have to use it on something more than an occasional basis for that to happen. If you’re much less scatterbrained and easily distracted than I am, then, this might work for you. If not, however… ooh, look, there’s a bird outside my window! Wait: what was I talking about again?