31 August 2013

Sunnyside Bubble Bar (Old And Reformulated)

Lush claim that this bubble bar is 'perfect for grey days when you wish for a bit of sparkle in your life.' So when the weather turned from bad to worse last week, and I was considering migrating somewhere hot for the 'summer', I thought it was the perfect time to try it out.

Old Design (Pre April 2015)
Sunnyside is definitely one of Lush's most intimidating bubble bars. For those of us concerned with 'mess', the sheer sight of a bar painted with gold glitter, might seem like the worst idea ever. But I was feeling messy, so what was the worst that could happen?
As soon as the bubble bar hit the water, the bar began to foam and it wasn't long before the entire bath tub was full of gorgeous, citrusy bubbles. Having seen what an entire bar can do, you could easily use this on 2-3 separate occasions if you so wish. While most bubble bars are easy enough to crumble under the running tap, I found that this one was a little resistant. For this reason, I held the bar under the running water and this seemed to stimulate an impressive amount of bubbles. 

The bubbles that Sunnyside create have a lovely, creamy and soft consistency that gently caress your skin whilst your bathing. The water swirls with a golden shimmer that creates a beautiful display every time the water moves. You really feel as if you're bathing in luxury, which in all fairness, you are.

The initial scent of this bar is a citrusy fragrance made up of wild orange and lemon oils. It's a sweet smell that is similar to lemon sorbet or sherbet.The sweet orange oil helps to soothe sensitive and overworked skin, acting as an anti-flammatory for broken and damaged skin. The use of tangerine oil helps you to relax and can even help insomnia. 
The scent is quite strong in the dry state and also quite strong in the bath. It's an invigorating smell that is delicate and refreshing, and one that is guaranteed to wake you up. It stays with you throughout the whole bath and lingers in the bathroom for hours after use.

The good thing, for those that were worried about the glitter, is that it doesn't attach itself to your skin. So once you exit the bath, you won't have to spend hours trying to rinse it out of your hair or off your body. However, it does tend to stick to the tub, although this is easily rectifiable by giving your bath a quick rinse with the shower hose after use.

In 2015, Lush revamped some of their bubble bars for the opening of their flagship store on Oxford Street. Among the improvements was this little product, which was not only shaped differently but was made much bigger,  therefore much better value for money. While I highly recommended Sunnyside before this update, the new design has made me fall in love with it all over again. It's the perfect 'perk me up' and works wonders in any cocktail - a must have for Lush fans old and new.

Quantitative Ingredients: Sodium Bicarbonate, Cream of Tartar, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Radiant Gold Lustre, Lauryl Betaine, Sweet Wild Orange Oil, Lemon Oil, Tangerine Oil, Silica, Calcium Sodium Borosilicate, Tin Oxide, Citral, Geraniol, Limonene, Linalool, Lilial, Citronellol, Hydroxycitronellal, Perfume, Colour 77492, Edible Golden Agar Glitter (Agar, Mica Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxide).

Vegan?: Yes

2014 Price: £3.75 each.
2015 Price: £4.65 each.

28 August 2013

Aqua Marina Facial Cleanser

As I said in my previous post, my goal is to try every single vegan product that Lush bring out - whether they're part of the regular line-up, or indeed a seasonal release. This will allow me to find scent families that I enjoy and ultimately, establish my favourites. So when I ran out of my current favourite facial cleanser, Angels on Bare Skin, I opted to buy a tub of both Herbalism and Aqua Marina - two very different products, but two I was equally intrigued to try.

Asides from AoBS, Aqua Marina seems to be the only regular facial cleanser that is not aimed at people with oily or greasy skin. And unlike all of the previous cleansers I have tried, this one seems to be the only one with this consistency. As opposed to the usual dry, crumbly cleansers that I use, this one is rather squishy and wet - it looks a little like pureed mushrooms mixed with blanched spinach. Not what you'd immediate gravitate towards in a shop, but one that is intriguing enough to gage a second look. 
For starters, it is a pretty pinkish colour - a cleaner which is then wrapped in nori seaweed to add moisturising qualities, not to mention keep it fresh when it's presented in the shop as a roulade. Despite this, once it reaches you in the tub, the seaweed and cleanser have merged somewhat - leaving you with a less attractive and rather 'wet' splodge of castle pink and green.

Lush have mixed together an ocean of ingredients which supposedly soothe and calm the skin. They've added carrageen extract, vegetable glycerine, Irish moss gel and aloe vera gel, which are all ingredients known for their skin calming properties. There is also fine sea salt, sweet wild orange oil and patchouli oil - all essential products needed for smoothing and cleansing dry skin. Finally calamine powder and kaolin are added to cleanse and exfoliate dead skin cells and debris from the surface of the face. 

Yet again Lush have created a product with multiple purposes and properties. But does it work? Unfortunately, my face didn't get on well with this cleanser at all. On the positive side, it was easier to use than other cleansers, as I only had take a pinch and smoother it all over my face. However, once I had rinsed it off, I found my face felt rather dry and rough. Given that Aqua Marina is a facial cleanser, which is specifically designed to sooth and soften the skin, as well as to brighten it up, I couldn't believe that my face felt the complete opposite. 

To add to my disliking, Aqua Marina has an unpleasant synthetic scent, which I just couldn't get used to. Although there is nothing synthetic about the ingredients, there is an underlying 'greasy' smell that I associate with cheap body lotions. The initial smell is a unique blend of moss and aloe vera, but it's not unique in a good way - there's a reason why many people claim that this cleanser has a fishy element about it.

Not only this, but its consistency meant that my face felt really greasy and rather clogged up after using this. Rather than exfoliating and then soothing my face, I felt it somewhat smothered it and left it feeling heavy and unpleasant. 

Having used this cleanser for a good month and not noticing an improvement, I have to say that I don't feel as if the cleanser is right for me. While Aqua Marina is obviously a love-it or hate-it sort of product, I'm unfortunately in the latter bracket and will not be purchasing this again. 

Quantitative Ingredients: Glycerine, Calamine Powder, Kaolin, Irish Moss Gel, Organic Aloe Vera Gel, Fine Sea Salt, Nori Seaweed, Sweet Wild Orange Oil, Patchouli Oil, Carrageenan Extract, Perfume.

Vegan?: Yes

2015 Price: £6.75 for 100g. 

25 August 2013

Herbalism Facial Cleanser

Despite being very happy with my Angels on Bare Skin facial cleanser, I don't think I can settle on one product until I've had the chance to try out all of what Lush have to offer. They say curiosity killed the cat, but in this case the cat got away having discovered a new favourite product (WHAT?!?!).

Herbalism is a purifying and exfoliating herbal cleansing roll wash, best used on oily and problem skin. I will start by saying that I have neither ailment, however Lush products are normally very versatile so I wasn't too worried about this. 

Herbalism is a green, squidgy, putty-like paste made from powdered herbs. It cleanses with China clay, exfoliates with ground almonds, revives the skin with rosemary, and uses nettle powder to purge your toxins and chamomile to soothe the surface. Sounds like a dream product, right?

With the addition of kaolin to absorb grease, rose absolute and chamomile oil to balance the skin, and chlorophyllin, the green pigment from grass, to regenerate skin cells, this facial cleanser is a feast for the face.

First impressions were good. The product is a gorgeous, but very natural looking green coloured powder. And although the scent is an acquired taste, I really liked it. It smells as if someone has ground down a range of different herbs and added a drop of rice vinegar to give it a sweet edge, which is exactly what Lush have done. 

Like other Lush cleansers, such as AoBS, to use you simply take a small pinch (roughly the size of an aniseed ball), add a couple of drops of water, and mash into a paste. Then massage all over your face and rinse under the shower.

Unlike other cleansers that I have tried, Herbalism is a little more crumbly, so be careful not to add too much water, otherwise you'll be left with a palm-ful of lumpy, green liquid. 

Although my face didn't feel as rejuvenated or as soft as it does when I use Angels on Bare Skin, it did make my skin feel cleansed and toned. I also noticed that even after a single use, the redness from a problematic spot on my chin, was noticeably reduced.  

I use this product once or twice daily, and a small 100g tub lasts for about two months or so. Although I will go back to using Angels on Bare Skin once I have finished this tub, that's only because it's suited more to my skin type. 

Herbalism is a great cleanser, and definitely not something I would be opposed to using again in the future. 

Quantitative Ingredients: Ground Almonds, Kaolin, Glycerine, Chlorophyllin Water, Nettle, Rosemary and Rice Vinegar Extract, Rice Bran, Gardenia Extract, Rose Absolute, Chamomile Blue Oil, Sage Oil, Perfume.

Vegan?: Yes

22 August 2013

25:43 Liquid Perfume

25:43 is the perfume that Mark Constantine created specifically for the wedding of his son, Simon. It is named after the amount of time - 25 minutes and 43 seconds that it took the LUSH founder and Gorilla Perfumer to compile the ingredients, create and perfect this fragrance. 

When I first purchased this perfume on eBay, as with every Lush perfume that I have ever bought, I had no idea what to expect from the scent. I had read reviews on 25:43, I had ingested the lists of scents that had been added to make this product. Yet I was still unsure exactly what smell would greet me on sniffing it for the first time. 

Containing notes of lime, tonka bean, lemongrass, vanilla, ylang ylang and litsea, this perfume is a marvel if there ever was one. In the bottle, this is a very citrusy perfume - one that has a lemon-y, limey note that reminds me a little of Dragon's Egg Bath Bomb. Yet the addition of ylang ylang, vanilla, and tonka bean prevent it from being simply another citrus fragrance. 
While the initial smell is lime and lemongrass, once on the skin the undertone of vanilla makes itself very present, and this element dominates the overall aroma very quickly. Not only does it dampen the citrus sting and makes it all the more appealing with it's warm, sultry blanket of sweetness, it rounds the whole perfume off and makes a very wholesome, yet equally gentle fragrance to wear in the warmer months.  

25:43 is a fresh and citrusy perfume that I believe smells a lot better when left to mature on your skin and clothes. Some perfumes can be sprayed and immediately smell amazing, others need time to breathe. 25:43 is definitely of the latter group. I tend to spray this all over myself and within 5-10 minutes, the vanilla, ylang ylang, lime and lemongrass soften and release a soft scent that doesn't smell acidic or overpowering and leaves me feeling very happy indeed.

This is definitely a spring/summer smell - one that compliments the warm weather and suits the sunnier, happy times more than the colder ones. Although I don't wear this very often, I find that I get a lot of positive compliments when I do - a perfect reason to get a bottle if there ever was one!
Lush recently re-released this to celebrate the one year anniversary of the opening of the Gorilla Perfume shop in Islington, and while I loved the perfume beforehand, the new bottles and general freshness of the perfume has made me fall in love with this all over again. 

Quantitative Ingredients: DRF Alcohol, Perfume, Tonka Absolute, Lemongrass Oil, Litsea Cubeba Absolute, Persian Lime Oil, Benzyl Salicylate, Coumarin, Geraniol, Benzyl Benzoate, Citronellol, Famesol, Limonene, Linalool.

Vegan?: Yes

2015 Price: £31 for 30ml. 
2016 Price: £32 for 30ml. 

19 August 2013

Dorothy Bubble Bar

When I originally discovered the existence of the Dorothy Bubble Bar, I was really excited to try it out. It looked amazing and the reviews were really positive, which is always a good sign. Unfortunately, I think Lush had temporarily discontinued it at the time, as it wasn't listed on their site and I couldn't find it in any of my local stores. So I traipsed through pages and pages of listings on eBay and kept my eyes peeled, all the while hoping one would show itself sooner or later.

Two months later, a listing for a Lush gift box appeared, featuring none other than the Dorothy. I greedily snapped it up and anticipated it's arrival. As my luck would have it, Lush reinstated the Dorothy bar some three days after my order arrived, and my excitement deflated slightly. So much so, that I packed the Dorothy in my Bubble Bar box and forgot all about it. That was until earlier this week.
I'm going to be honest - the initial smell of this bubble bar is not all that pleasing. It smells a little of clean laundry after it's been left to dry overnight. A weak floral smell that is a little bit like Pop In the Bath, only not as sweet and sugary. It's by no means a terrible smell - just not a very interesting one.

Whilst running my bath, I crumbled the bubble bar under the tap and was pleased to see that the Dorothy bar produced a lot of bubbles. The heat and steam also helped to bring out the floral scent a little more, producing a very clean, fresh scent. You can pick out a gentle layer of ylang ylang, however, the smell remained rather weak, and when I first got into the bath, I could make out the scent of my pink FUN over anything that the Dorothy had created.

On the positive side, the bubble bar turns the water a beautiful deep turquoise colour. It's a really rich colour - much like the colour of the bubble bar itself and it's very inviting. It does dissipate somewhat over time but this is no doubt due to the other products you are using in the bath. The bubbles also reduce throughout the experience but I was surprised to find a surplus amount left at the end of the experience.

While Dorothy doesn't produce bubbles that are as soft or silky as other bubble bars, the water more than makes up for this. The water is wonderfully silky and I left the bath with beautiful velvety-smooth feeling skin. I felt really clean, refreshed and revitalised. However, when I stepped out of the bath, I was disappointed that the scent hadn't really lingered on my skin all that much at all. I also found that although my skin felt lovely and smooth, it still felt quite dry and in need of a moisturise. 

This bubble bar wasn't the most exciting, despite it's beautiful design. With all of Lush's other, more superior products, it's not something I would be interested in trying again. I would recommend this to those who perhaps prefer the subtle-scented products from Lush, and perhaps it would work better on those with different skin to mine. 
While it's in no way a terrible bubble bar, there are just far more better ones that I would pick over this one. 

Quantitative Ingredients: Sodium Bicarbonate, Cream of Tartar, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Lauryl Betaine, Perfume, Cocamide DEA, Ylang Ylang Oil, Orange Flower Absolute, Gardenia Extract, *Benzyl Benzoate, *Linalool, Colour 42090, Colour 14700, Colour 15510.

Vegan?: Yes

2015 Price: £3.25 each.
2017 Price: £3.95 each.

Scent Family:
Dorothy Bubble Bar
Figs & Leaves Soap

16 August 2013

Taai Taai Shower Gel

As I've said in my previous posts, there is nothing that excites me more than discovering another Lush shower gel that I've not tried before. What's even more exciting, is finding a rare shower gel that I never thought I'd have the opportunity to try. Taai Taai is one such beauty. 

I was a little skeptical when this first arrived in the post, as the expiry date was in mid-2009, meaning that this shower gel was close to four years out of date. However, I was happy and relieved, on smelling this product, to find that it had up-held both its smell and consistency.

On first sniff, this shower gel smells identical to the atomic fireball sweets that I used to eat as a child. For those unaware of these delicacies, the flavour and scent is a strong, spicy cinnamon. 

The scent dampens slightly when being used in the shower, but this doesn't take away from the gel's other magical properties. For a product that has exceeded its shelf life, it is incredibly soft on the skin and lathers up beautifully. My skin feels super soft after use and remains soft throughout the whole day.

The spicy kick is a great help for waking me up in the mornings, yet ironically, it is also great for helping me to relax in the evenings. It's a warm and comforting smell that can be used in winter and summer. The spicy, cinnamon and gingerbread scent is fresh and invigorating on your skin, although, I believe it to be an acquired scent. Fans of Phoenix Rising and Cinders will no doubt enjoy this.

Taai Taai was an exclusive Dutch product that only saw limited release in the UK. However, I'm really hoping this makes a return at some point so I can stock up.

Quantitative Ingredients: Ginger Root Infusion (Zingiber officinale), Water (Aqua), Sodium Laureth Ssulfate, Sodium Cocoamphocetate, Fresh Tangerine Juice (Citrus tangerina), Lauryl Betaine, Propylene Glycol, *Cinnamyl Alcohol, *Eugenol, *Isoeugenol, *Limonene, Perfume, Sweet Orange Oil (Citrus Aurantium dulcis), Cinnamon Leaf Oil (Cinnamomum cassia), Gardenia Extract (Gardenia jasminoides), Titanium Dioxide, Lactic Acid, Colour 18050, Methylparaben.

Vegan?: Yes

13 August 2013

Dirty Toothy Tabs

After my less than pleasant experience with the Sparkle Toothy Tabs, I was a little hesitant to try any of the other flavours. However, the premise of Lush's tabs being environmentally better, urged me to give them a second chance. For this reason, I thought I'd play it safe with their spearmint variety, Dirty

The tabs come in a small rectangle box, which makes them great for travelling as they'll take up a lot less room than your average tube of toothpaste. They're also mess free as paste risks leaking all over your luggage, whereas if your box of toothy tabs were to 'explode', you'd just have a small collection of broken tabs that are easily removable. 

However, there is one disadvantage to these tabs being environmentally conscious, and that's that they're stored in a thin cardboard box. This makes it rather difficult to store the tabs in the bathroom, the one place in your house that guarantees to stay damp for the most part. I know common sense tells me I could keep these tabs in a drier area of my flat. However, I like to brush my teeth whilst in the shower, so this a little annoying.

The box currently retails for £2 and is aimed to give you roughly 40 uses, which does make this product marginally more expensive than your shop-bought variety. However, there are many perks aside from the environmental aspects that make me believe this product is worth the price tag.

To use them you simply pop a tab into your mouth, crunch down using your front teeth, wet your toothbrush and begin to brush your teeth as per normal. The powdery mixture foams with the addition of water but remains grainy. It is this abrasive texture that I believe helps to whiten your teeth and clean away any stubborn pieces of food.

The gritty texture is something that you have to get used to, as at first I was a little grossed out by it. However, the addition of these pieces helped me to feel like I was exfoliating my teeth and they definitely felt clean and fresh after I had finished. Unlike normal toothpaste, the aftertaste is also a lot more subtle, meaning that I could enjoy eating afterwards without experiencing that overpowering minty flavour that you do with shop-bought paste.
Overall, this second attempt at using toothy tabs was a lot more positive than the first, and I shall definitely be continuing my use of these for the near future.

Quantitative Ingredients: Dicalcium Phosphate Anhydrous, Sodium Bicarbonate, Cream of Tartar, Sorbitol, Lauroyl Sarcosine, Kaolin, Spearmint Oil, Neroli Oil, Sodium Saccharin, *Limonene, *Linalool, Flavour.

Vegan?: Yes

2015 Price: £2 per box.

Scent Family:
Dirty Body Spray
Dirty Massage Bar
Dirty Soap
Dirty Solid Perfume
Dirty Springwash Naked Shower Gel
Dirty Springwash Shower Gel
Dirty Toothy Tabs
Moustachio Soap

11 August 2013

Phoenix Rising Bath Bomb

This is easily the best named product in Lush's history. There is nothing that excites or interests me more in terms of mythology than that of the phoenix. An conspicuous creature that can regenerate itself to maintain it's health. In fact, I love the symbology of the phoenix so much, that I have one etched in permanent ink across my left forearm. If it's good enough for Dumbledore, it's good enough for me.

So it may come as a surprise to some of you, to learn that I have been in receipt of a Phoenix Rising Bath Bomb for nearly a year now. And it was only last week that I finally ventured into trying it. A part of me had been savouring this moment because I knew it would harvest a full-on obsession with the bomb. There was also a little part of me that feared I would dislike this product. I had nothing to fear. 

Phoenix Rising is probably one of Lush's most beautiful products. With a rich byzantium shade of purple, decorated with a splash of gold lustre, and topped with a fresh cinnamon stick, it already earns full marks for its look. 

To use, simply run a lovely hot bath, swirl the water around, then pop the ballistic in. As the water splashes on the bomb and it begins to dissolve, the water turns a stunning shade of deep purple, with elements of green towards the end.

The scent is very strong with this ballistic, which is why I love it so much. It's not a fragrance that dims over time, lingering on your skin and hair for hours after use. To me, it's a very Christmassy scent and would have fit in well with the Christmas range. But that's not say I wish it was a seasonal product! In fact, this product strangely seems appealing all year round. I first used it when the sun was shining outside, and it didn't feel out of place at all.

Phoenix Rising gently releases shea butter, cocoa butter and jojoba oil to leave your skin feather-soft. It contains cocoa butter and jojoba oil, to leave your skin really soft and smooth. You shouldn't even need to moisturise after getting out of the tub, although I always do so out of habit. Packed with exotic essential oils of fruit and spices, this bath bomb's fragrance is reminiscent of spiced rum and christmas pudding.

This is perfect for fans of the Cinders Bath Bomb, or anyone that has a particular love of cinnamon. It happens to be my favourite scent, which is why I love this product so much. I just hope, unlike The Enchanter, that Lush don't choose to discontinue this product, as it is now my current favourite bath bomb of theirs.

Quantitative Ingredients: Sodium Bicarbonate, Citric Acid, Icing Sugar, Cocoa Butter, PEG-6 Caprylic / Capric Glycerides, Bergamot Oil, Cassia Oil, Organic Jojoba Oil, Fair Trade Shea Butter, *Cinnamal, *Citral, *Limonene, *Linalool, Colour 45410, Colour 42090, Colour 77891, Colour 77510, Frosty Holly Lustre, Gold Lustre, Cinnamon Sticks.

Vegan?: Yes

2015 Price: £3.35 each.

2016 Price: £4.50 each.
2017 Price: £4.50 each.

Year Of Original Release: ?

9 August 2013

June 2013 Lush Inventory - Bits and Bobs

Next on my inventory is all of the small products that don't really fit into a group of their own. In here you'll find lip scrubs/balms, scrubs and powders etc...

I also have 3 out of the 5 fun bars. These aren't necessarily my favourite ones, I just find that the bars 'melt' somewhat if left for too long without use. I tend to rotate which ones I buy every couple of months. 

There are many items that aren't featured in these pictures, such as fresh face masks and cleansers, simply because I couldn't be bothered to gather them up from various rooms in the house and take pictures of said items. They are however, listed below. 

Current Stash:
Angels On Bare Skin
Aromaco Solid Deodorant
A Token to the Forest Gods Toner Tab
Aqua Marina
Bubblegum Lip Scrub
Candy Fluff
Catastrophe Cosmetic Fresh Face Mask
Charisma Skin Tint
Dream Steam Toner Tab
Dream Time Temple Balm
Fun bars (Yellow, Pink and Red)
Herbalism Facial Cleanser
Lip Dip Sugar Scrub
Lip Lime Balm
Moon and Sun Toner Tab
None of your Bees Wax Balm
Oatfix Fresh Face Mask
Popcorn Lip Scrub
Pow Wow Lip Scrub
 Sandy Santa Scrub

Silky Underwear 
Stepping Stone Scrub
Sweet Lips Scrub

Sugar Plum Fairy
Sugar Scrub
Tea Tree Toner Tab
Tea Tree Toner Water
Teo Deodorant 
The Kiss Lip Balm
T is for Toes Foot Powder
Toothy Tabs (Dirty and Atomic)
Tulip Wand
Ultrabalm Balm

Vanilla Puff
Volcano Foot Mask

Washing Up Fairy.