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The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin hand cream

If you've followed my blog for any length of time then you're probably aware that I'm a big fan of The Body Shop's hand creams. There are loads of scents to choose from and each year in the run up to Christmas The Body Shop usually release three limited edition Christmas scents. More on this shortly. I recently spotted on social media that there was a new scent on the block, so I headed down to pick up Vanilla Pumpkin. 

The Body Shop Vanilla Pumpkin hand cream

I am a little confused as to what the new scent is for. As I said each year The Body Shop release some limited edition Christmas scents and this does appear to have a little Christmas design on the pumpkin on the packaging. But pumpkin really isn't a Christmas scent, it's way too early to release a Christmas scent yet, and there's only one of them. So maybe The Body Shop thought they'd just jump on the everything pumpkin trend in the run up to Halloween.

These used to be a bargain at £3.50 but then they crept up to a still quite reasonable £4. They've now jumped up to £5, which I'm just about comfortable with, that's not too bad, but I'll be disappointed if they go up any more. 

To be honest, when I'm carving out a pumpkin I really don't like the smell. But when it comes to pumpkin scents I don't personally think they smell anything like raw yucky pumpkin. Actually I am quite new to pumpkin as a scent, but I do have a couple of DW Home candles in pumpkins scents which I love, and this does smell similar. Pumpkin with a creamy vanilla edge. 

As always with these hand creams it sinks in quickly leaving no residue behind and keeps my hands nicely moisturised. You really can't go wrong with these. You can find them in The Body Shop stores and online.

Have you tried any hand creams from The Body Shop?

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Afterspa Exfoliating cleansing tools

When it comes to cleansing both my face and body I do prefer to use some kind of 'tool' over just using my hands. For my face I usually use either my Foreo (which will run out soon as it's only a Luna Play) or Magnitone and for my body I use what I recently discovered is called a bath lily; one of those plastic pom pom like kind of things. I've recently been trying some face and body products from a brand called Afterspa. For my face I've been using the Afterspa Cleaning Puffs* and for my body I've been using the Afterspa Round Dual Texture Scrubber*.

Afterspa Cleansing Puffs & Round Dual Texture Scrubber
Afterspa Cleansing Puffs & Round Dual Texture Scrubber

Both of the products I'm featuring here are from the Exfoliating collection. One of the things that really attracted me to trying out these products is that each one comes in it's own little pouch complete with a suction pad. Once you open the packaging you can remove the lid/flap, attach the suction pad to the hook, pop this on the wall of your shower and this can then be used to store and dry the product. One of the problems I do have with products like this is finding somewhere to let them dry; space and hygiene wise. This will also make it easy to travel with the products.

Afterspa Cleansing Puffs
Afterspa Cleansing Puffs

The first product I tried out was the Cleansing Puffs. For £6 you get two puffs and these are like flat egg shaped pink sponges. Each one should be replaced every 60 days, so with two in the pack that is 120 days worth of use. You can use them just with water or you can use a cleanser. 

I think I've mentioned recently that when it comes to my face I tend to prefer chemical exfoliation because my skin is pretty sensitive and I find it very uncomfortable to use anything that feels at all rough against it. I bought one of the little manual facial brushes The Body Shop does once but it was far too harsh for me to actually use. Unfortunately the Afterspa Cleansing Puffs are also too harsh for me to use as they don't really get any softer when wet and feel a little 'wiry' for me. My skin does appear to be particularly sensitive though so if you don't have any problem with products like this then it might be perfect for you.

Afterspa Round Dual Texture Scrubber
Afterspa Round Dual Texture Scrubber
Afterspa Round Dual Texture Scrubber

The Round Dual Texture Scrubber is double sided with a soft side and a rougher side for deeper exfoliation. This one is £6.50 for one pad in the pack. Although I do like a bit of a rough scrub (although not too rough) on my body I found the 'rough' side of the scrubber a bit too rough for me. The softer side was much better, possibly still slightly too rough, but the issue with this side is this is the side with the handle you can slip your hand in to hold the scrubber. So when using this side you need to try and keep hold of the scrubber in some other way. 

I really like the idea behind both products but unfortunately they're both just too rough for my sensitive, easily aggravated skin. If you have tougher skin than me I would say give them a try, but go gently to begin with. You can find the Afterspa range in your local Boots store.


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Hempz Pomegranate Sugar body scrub

When I moved into my current house just over a year ago I received an email asking if I would like to try out a Hempz body lotion. Hempz wasn't a brand I had come across before in the likes of Boots or online, but I discovered that they are stocked in Sally's stores. As there is a Sally's store 5-10 minutes walk from my house I thought I'd give it a try as I could easily get hold of more if I took a liking to it. I really enjoyed using the body lotion, so when I received an email more recently asking if I'd like to try the Hempz Pomegranate Sugar body scrub* I quickly said yes.

Hempz Pomegranate Sugar body scrub

Hempz products are vegan and are also gluten, paraben and cruelty free and contain 100% pure natural hemp seed oil, which is a rich source of essential fatty acids. This also apparently provides the skin with protein, carbohydrates, nutrients, key minerals and fibre.  Shea butter conditions and rehydrates the skin and stimulating, anti-aging and anti-oxidant ingredients include ginseng, lemon peel, orange peel, grapefruit and ginger root extracts.  

Hempz Pomegranate Sugar body scrub

When it comes to my face I'm not a fan of manual exfoliation as the exfoliating bits can often be quite harsh and the sensitive skin on my face just can't take it. So I much prefer chemical exfoliation. However when it comes to the skin on my body I love a manual exfoliator; I like it to feel like it's doing something, but I still don't want it to be too harsh as that's not good for your skin. This is just the right level of scrubby and I love that as you rub it in to the skin the sugar particles gradually disappear, which I've not experienced before. It's got quite a rich, oily feeling base to it, so while the sugar particles tackle any dry, flaky patches this conditions and moisturises the skin leaving it feeling soft. Also, as you can probably imagine this smells pretty good too.

I'm just as impressed with this product as I was with the Hempz body lotion and I think they'd be amazing products used together. Hempz is not the easiest brand to get hold of but you can find their products online and the Pomegranate Sugar body scrub is £16.99. Although it's currently available from Fragrance Direct for £11.95.

Have you tried any Hempz products?

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*PR sample  

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