December products – haircare, chocolate bodycare, and Harry Potter bath products

I’m not sure what I’m going to do with empties this year. I want to be a bit more selective – so if something was just ok or I’ve talked about it before, I probably won’t mention it again. I think I’ll limit them to 15 items too so that they don’t get too long!

1. Hotel Chocolat body lotion

This chocolate body lotion was amazing! I mentioned it a couple of months ago when I got it for my birthday, but I wanted to mention it again here because it’s such a lovely range and I’m looking forward to trying out more of the products. Hotel Chocolat is only really known for its main product, the chocolate, but this lovely gentle and delicious-smelling skincare is well worth a mention as well.

2. Caffeinated shampoo and conditioner

I managed to get hold of one sample of shampoo and to of conditioner, which given the length of my hair, worked out well when I used them all together. The idea with this is that the caffeine stimulates the hair follicles, so it’s really something you would need to use for a longer time before you could say whether it was working. Still, why does something that does a good thing like that have to smell so bad? Really, it was awful! That combined with the tingly sensation that you get if you use a mint scalp massage treatment. I’m not convinced. I would love the benefits that this promises, but I’d have to slather on something nice afterwards like a hair mist or my mango detangler. This felt more like something you endure for good results than a pleasant treat for the hair.

3. Guava hand cream

I said how much I liked the guava body butter from Korres, and I picked up the hand cream in the same scent as well. These are nice, generous tubes, and out of the two hand creams I’ve tried from Korres, I liked this guava one more. Partly because the guava scent was more prominent, but I felt it was a bit more nourishing too. I try out a lot of hand creams and something has to be good for me to buy it again, but I would get this again!

4. Naughty elf

Want a cosy night in? Get yourself a naughty elf from Lush! Well they seem to have sold out now, but see if he comes back in the Christmas 2019 collection. Anyway, I heard about the naughty elf bubble bar in a review, and as bubble bars are my favourite thing from Lush and I love citrus scents, he sounded right up my street! I find with bath bombs, you have to add bubble bath too, but these are just a treat on their own. You could snap him in half if you wanted to get another bath out of him. He apparently looks a bit like Father Christmas and is not how you’d expect an elf to look. Also he turns your bathwater red!

5. Spot zap fix

Not at all glamorous. Maybe you don’t have those monthly hormonal breakouts, but if you do, this zap fix is just the thing. It’s like a pen with a roller that you apply to clean skin and I haven’t found anything that takes breakouts down as fast as this. I’ve already got another one – two in fact because they were on Black Friday half price! It says it’s for teenagers, but I don’t really care if it does the job.

6. Korres hair mask

I have talked about this hair mask before, but although there are a lot of hair masks that I think were nice enough, this is one that I go back to. It comes in a tube, which means you don’t get the product wet by dipping into it. It contains almond and linseed extracts, so isn’t floral, like some masks. It also contains shea butter to help your hair stay moisturised and protect against split ends. It also claims to control static and prevent frizzy hair, although this isn’t a problem I have, so I can’t say how true this is.

7. Nails Inc hand mask

I hated this so much! It was sticky and smelled of alcohol. The hands were modelled on someone whose hands are twice the size of mine. I won’t be buying this again! It wasn’t particularly cheap either, and there are much better hand masks on the market.

8. Elizabeth Arden Prevage serum

I got a mini sample of this Prevage serum in a bag of free products after stocking up in the Feelunique Black Friday sale. This has become my favourite place to buy beauty and skincare! 50ml of this costs £170, and it’s not something I would usually go out and buy, but it was by far the best thing in the free gift. It is packed with antioxidants, apparently the most powerful antioxidant available today, and primarily helps the skin to fight the effects of environmental aggression. It was a sample, and I therefore couldn’t use it long enough to say whether it really made a difference, but as serums go, I enjoyed using it. I doubt I would shell out £170!

9. Banana shower gel

I have mentioned this before, but I get the feeling the banana range is mainly known for the haircare. There are other things as well though such as the body butter and the shower gel that are also worth checking out if you prefer the fruity scents.

10. Aveda shampoo

I got this cherry almond shampoo when I was on the Lookfantastic site, spending my Glossy points. I wanted to try something from aveda because I’d heard good things about the brand. It’s a 98% natural lightweight shampoo with cherry blossom and almond oil to clean your hair and leave it silky and glossy. I’m not very faithful to shampoos, but I’d pick this up again.

11. Philip Kingsley conditioner

This isn’t a brand that I’d usually reach for, but I got the body-building conditioner in my Glossybox advent calendar. It was nice enough as a conditioner, though I can’t say that I noticed increased volume in my hair or that I would run out and get it again.

12. Strawberry cupcake shower gel

This was something else that we got in the Glossybox calendar. Some people would find this too sweet, but the whole range is based on desserts, so you expect them to be sweet. My favourites from this brand are the lemon and cherry ranges, but I was happy to use this strawberry shower gel too.

13. Fuji green tea shampoo and conditioner

We got this purifying shampoo and hydrating conditioner in the Body Shop calendar. The only reason I wouldn’t get these again is that I like other hair products from the Body Shop more, and out of the two I probably preferred the conditioner for hair that needs a bit of nourishment. If you’re looking for something from the Body Shop and you don’t like the fruity ranges, this would definitely be something I could recommend.

14. Rituals Hamam shower gel

I got a small sample of this in the December Tili box. I like Rituals scents, but this one knocks you out with the eucalyptus! Fine if you have a cold and need to clear the airwaves, but I think otherwise I’d choose one of their other scents!

15. Harry Potter bath bombs

I got a set of these for Christmas. I’m not sure if they were limited edition from Superdrug as I can’t find them now, but if you get them, be warned! They are a bit of fun, and the designs are cool, but the cauldron one turns your water black, the golden snitch one makes it look as if you’ve been bathing in urine, and the Gryffindor one makes it look as though you’ve been bathing in blood! Just so you know! They are very big and smell quite good. In fact, I was blissfully aware of the strangely coloured water until it was pointed out to me later, but I think I was at a distinct advantage not being able to see it!

So, what products have you enjoyed recently?

Discounts and offers

And finally if you’ve made it this far – just a reminder that I have some affiliate discount codes for you:

Feelunique – you can get £10 off your first Feel Unique order by going onto the site using my affiliate link. This offer is open to new customers only, and the minimum spend is £30.

Glossybox – you can get 20% off your first box by using my code KIRSTY-RGE when you place your first order on the Glossybox site.

Ocado – if you would like me to send you an invitation to Ocado, just fill out your details using the form below. You will receive a £20 voucher for your first shop, and a free smart pass, which gives you free deliveries for one year (minimum spend applies).

More from Unseen Beauty

If you’d like to get my catch-up emails, usually once a week, you can sign up using this form.

The emails contain news of my new posts, other things that I’ve enjoyed (podcasts, posts from other bloggers, interesting articles etc), and any UK shopping information that I think my readers might like.

This post contains some affiliate links, but I only promote things that I’ve tried and tested, and I give honest reviews.

Blog reader gift – trying out Lush products

So a couple of weeks ago something happened that has never happened before on Unseen Beauty. I received a parcel from one of my readers! It was such a lovely and kind thing to do. It’s one thing when a brand is kind enough to send you something to try out, but when it’s someone who does it because they read your blog and want to do something nice for you, that’s something else and I was really touched.

So Becky has been supporting Unseen Beauty for ages now by commenting or sharing my posts. She asked me on Facebook whether I had tried any products from Lush, and I said that I hadn’t. She then asked for my address because she wanted to send me something.

When the box arrived, there were actually four things inside! I was really surprised and the box smelled amazing. Becky had clearly been paying attention to my posts as well because she chose things that include my favourite fruity scents – mango and grapefruit!

To be honest, I hadn’t really tried that much from Lush before. It’s partly because I didn’t realise the full range of products that they do, partly because I thought everything would leave the bath really messy, and partly because some bath products I’ve used in the past haven’t dissolved fully and there were gritty bits all over the bottom of the bath, which were a problem for me. More about sensory sensitivity in another post.

So what was in the box from Becky?

Bright side bubble bar

I didn’t know that bubble bars were even a thing. They are flat, like a bar of soap, and you can snap them in half because when dissolved, even half of one will give you a lot of bubbles.

The bright side bubble bar smells amazingly citrusy and contains Bergamotte mandarin and tangerine. You get a thick layer of bubbles on top of the water and they are proper bubbles, not ones that dissolve into nothing if you touch them. It’s like a carpet of bubbles floating on your water and it makes the room smell wonderful! I was definitely a fan of this!

Happy hippy shower gel – grapefruit

I think Becky chose this grapefruit shower gel because she knows I’m a fan of grapefruit! This is the really zingy kind of grapefruit, not the sweeter scent that you sometimes get when it’s pink grapefruit or mixed with other things. The shower gel was moisturising, and the scent stayed around on my skin throughout the rest of the day. I would definitely get this again!

The comforter bubble bar

This is another bubble bar, like the first one, but the Comforter bubble bar contains blackcurrant and bergamotte. I liked this bar too, although not quite as much as the orange one because I liked the citrus scent more. There weren’t quite as many bubbles either, but there were still more than you get with a lot of bubble baths that are more expensive than the bar.

You’ve been mangoed – bath oil

This cute little mango bath oil dissolves away into your bath water. I love the design because it looks like a mini mango, and the mango scent is also one of my favourites. When you get out of the bath, your skin is really soft, and although I always use moisturisers afterwards, this is a good option for people who forget or who don’t like body lotion. The bath water did apparently look a bit cloudy afterwards and there was an oily mark round the bath. Obviously I clean the bath anyway, but this took a bit more to remove, and I would advise anyone using these to watch out because they can make the bath a bit slippery as well. I’d say I’m more a fan of the bars, but I enjoyed testing this bath oil out.

Final thoughts

So, overall I was really glad to get the chance to try out these products because I learned a bit more about the range of things on offer at Lush, I got some grapefruity and mango goodness, and I discovered bubble bars. It was only really the bath oil that made a bit of a mess. In terms of the debris, I put my bars, bath salts, or bath bombs in a small material bag that floats and keeps all the bits inside. The oils come out through the holes, and anything else stays inside. Of course most people don’t do this, but my doing it means I can enjoy these products too – and that has to be a good thing!

Thanks again to Becky for her generous gift. Since I received it, I have made a trip to lush and got a couple more bars and bath bombs – more reviews to come soon!

What is your favourite product from Lush? Let me know in the comments!

More from Unseen Beauty

If you’d like to get my catch-up emails, usually twice a week, you can sign up using this form.

The emails contain news of my new posts, other things that I’ve enjoyed (podcasts, posts from other bloggers, interesting articles etc), and any UK shopping information that I think my readers might like.