What do you do when you're having a bad skin day/week/month?.. Ask your friends what products you need and then go and spend all of your money on them, right?!

My skin recently went a little bit out of control... usually I'm pretty lucky with my skin and only suffer from a little dryness and sensitivity but for some reason I had breakouts on my chin, little spots under the skin on my forehead and just general bad skin for a good few weeks, and it really got me down.
I asked some of my friends for any recommendations they had of new products for me to try and ended up going on a little bit of a skincare splurge (oops!) 
Its only been two weeks since I bought these, but I thought that I'd share some first impressions and start up a little 'new in' series for the blog.

My skin was looking particularly dull and needed a real brighten so I picked up was the Clarins Gentle Exfoliator Brightening Toner, something I had heard lots about in the past. It's kind of a gentler version of the Alpha H Liquid Gold, a less abrasive acidic toner, which I feel much more confident putting on my skin when it's going through an especially sensitive stage.  
Although this is recommended to be used twice weekly, I've been using it every other night after cleansing and before moisturising as it is gentle enough to do so. Since using this for the past two weeks, I've started to notice a real difference in the texture of my skin, it is now much smoother which means my makeup applies easier and looks so much better.

Another product which aims to brighten the skin is the Clarins Beauty Flash Balm... in basic terms it's a really good moisturiser/primer for stressed skin, but it seems to do so much more. 
It's designed to be used in one of two ways, my way of choice being that it's applied immediately before putting on any makeup, so I smooth this onto my skin and then my foundation follows straight after leaving my skin looking pretty radiant, without looking greasy or shiny and this even works if I'm using a more matte foundation.  
The other way to use this is as a face mask, which I haven't tried yet... If you've had any experiences using it this way, let me know your thoughts.

When I'm stressed or if I ever have any kind of allergic reaction, it always comes out around my eyes. I've had flaking skin, rashes and what look like burns around my eyes when this has been at it's worst and it's really annoying because the skin is so delicate there, it can be really hard to treat. Thankfully Liz Earle Eyebright has come to my rescue... it contains eyebright cornflower which helps to minimise inflammation, aloe vera to soothe and cool and Witch Hazel to tone.
As with all Liz Earle products this is cutely free and packed with completely natural ingredients, which is what gave me the initial confidence to use this on my sore eye area. With a small amount on a cotton wool pad, I simply rest this on my closed eyes, and within minutes I can feel that my sore eyes are easing... I'll definitely be continuing to use this each morning, even when my eyes aren't sore, its really refreshing and a nice wake up when I'm having an early start!

Lastly, and possibly my favourite of the bunch so far is the Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask, something which I actually thought was for oily skin, but it's not, it's a really intense moisture mask which contains anti-dehydration ingredients (which is just what my skin was needing!)
When you apply it before bed, it's a cream/gel type of consistency which sits on top of the skin, and as you sleep your skin 'drinks it up' hence the name! I have to mention the fact that it smells amazing (always a bonus) and a little goes a long way with this, I can see this tube lasting me ages. I've been using it twice weekly and it's made such a difference already, my dryness has subsided massively and I feel like my skin is finally getting it's glow back. 

If you're interested in hearing full reviews of any of these products after I have used them for longer, leave a comment and let me know.
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