Reviews: But First coffee body scrub, Garnier Skin Active Hydra Bomb tissue mask and Maybelline Master Conceal concealer

If you’re a regular reader you’ll know I recently spent three weeks in Thailand and while there I tested a few new beauty goodies, the first being But First coffee body scrub in Chocolate Mint (R285).

The hotel told me off for exfoliating in the pool. (KIDDING! I’m not a savage!)

Made from coffee grounds and infused with a chocolate mint oil that makes it smells a lot like Peppermint Crisp, this guy was a winner. As its super duper scrubby it did a truly brilliant job of stripping off old self-tan (which I wore a lot over there as I don’t really like to tan) and a little went a long way. I totally expected to use up and toss the little pot towards the end of my trip (I was away for three weeks) but, despite using it very, very generously, it’s still half full.

This smells good enough to eat!

I also really liked that, while it’s got a bit of oil in it, they’ve used the bare minimum, so you don’t leave the shower feeling greasy or like there’s any kind of ‘film’ coating your body. That’s my pet hate when it comes to body scrubs. Because its ultra light on oil, I was happy to use this on my back which has been known to break out when I travel in the east due to a combination of sweat, waterproof sunscreen and massages.

I have a second tub, the Coffee Vanilla variant, and when that’s all used up I’ll probably repurchase.

Moving on, you’ll know I was recently sent Garnier’s new Moisture Bomb tissue masks (R54,95 each). There’s been a lot of excitement around these guys because South Africa’s really running with the sheet mask trend that’s kind of taking over the world right now. I even spotted them in Watsons and Boots in Bangkok and noticed they’ve got a whitening/brightening variant. (Thailand is crazy about its skin tone-evening products and you’ll see ads for a brand called Snail White pretty much every where!)

A new beach bag essential?

I spent almost a week on a sleepy little island called Koh Lanta (you can read all about it here) and the place was a total ghost town – probably the closest thing I could ever get to being all alone on a deserted island! Having the place almost all to myself was pretty awesome as I always had the full attention of every restaurant I set foot in (they’d often bring you an extra dish, just because!), I didn’t have random holiday makers ruining my beautiful beach shots and could get away with doing shizz like this…

I take UV protection very freakin’ seriously, okay?

Of the three Garnier sheet masks available in South Africa I was most taken with the re-balancing version as it’s alcohol-free and, despite being intended for oily-combo skin, I found it just as hydrating as the others. While it contains water-binding hyaluronic acid, the active doing the heavy lifting in the hydrating department is glycerine teamed with propylene glycol which helps it better penetrate your skin. It also contains two natural anti-inflammatory antioxidants in the form of green tea and licorice extract.

I really liked that each mask is completely soaked with serum so you can put the sheet on your face and then use the excess on your chest. In fact, there’s so much liquid I was able to treat my arms and legs too! I used all of them while I was away and found them to be a nice, refreshing treat after a long day in the sun.

Lastly, while sniffing around the Thai drug stores I discovered the fabulousness that is Maybelline Master Conceal concealer.

I can’t remember what I paid for it but I think it was less than R80.

I’m super bleak that this guy isn’t available locally as it serves up great mid-weight coverage that does a lovely job of covering up under eye circles (provided you don’t have seriously dark rings) and hiding the odd spot. What I really loved about it, however, was that once it’s on it stays put. I tried it while I was there out of curiosity expecting it to run off my face the moment I set foot outdoors (Thailand is crazy humid, day or night) and it totally sat tight! It also didn’t settle into my fine lines which is something I’ve started to become more aware of as I’ve gotten older. (Back in the day all my concealer had to do was cover. Now I expect it to do more.)

In a way, Master Conceal’s texture and coverage reminds me a bit of Lancome’s lovely Effacernes concealer but at a snip of the price. (For the record, Effacernes is waterproof and Master Conceal is not.)

Anyway, if you’ve spotted it online and been curious know that it’s a real gem. I’ve come back with a couple of tubes and will probably end up purchasing more on eBay.

Love, love


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