Despite having turned 30 back in June 2012 it was only at the end of last year that I started to notice a dramatic difference in my skin. Almost as if overnight I had noticed my skin had become very red on my cheeks, my nose area was extremely dry and flaky and I was having breakouts – something I hadn’t experienced since I turned 18. In addition my foundation seemed to be just ‘sitting’ on top of my skin and despite changing it twice, I just couldn’t get it right. My confidence was suffering as a result, as I was pilling the make up on to try and ‘cover up’ and feel less embarrassed by it.
As a busy mum of four children I felt I simply didn’t have enough time to enter into a long winded skincare regime. However, on yet another visit to MAC in search of yet another ‘miracle cure‘ foundation, the girl serving me reminded me that foundation was only ever going to cover up the problem and add to it until I sorted out what was happening. Simply put – I needed to go skin deep to address the problem.
So when our PR and fellow blogger Diary of an honest Woman put us in contact with skincare brand SBC (Simply Beautiful Collections) it seemed the perfect time to take charge. I’ll be honest, on the rare occasions in the past where I had been more vigilant (and had more time and money, ie, pre kids!) I had used brands such as Stella McCartney and Chanel I had never really looked at or heard of SBC, a brand sold on QVC. However, following a quick look on their website any preconceived snobbery soon was displaced and I was spoilt for choice with their exciting sounding range of skincare. I decided to go with the Collagen Range, as I was instantly drawn in to its promise to ‘plump and hydrate‘ the skin. It uses Oceagen, a soluble Collagen, which is a protein derived from Fish. I decided on the 3-in-1 Cleanser, Collagen Day & Night Cream, and Collagen Hydra Gel Serum.
I commited myself to one whole month of religiously cleansing every morning and night, as well as using the serum and moisturiser daily too. It might not sound like much to more committed skincare fans but adding in this extra time each day for me, was a big step and a big change to my usual routine. Therefore, I was delighted that the cleanser could be used in the bath as well as with cotton wool pads. In fact it’s recommended that you use the cleanser with the Shammy Cloth it comes with, however as I’m not a massive fan of ‘washing‘ my face I alternated this using both methods, shammy cloth when bathing and cotton pads at my dressing table. Both were equally as effective with the shammy cloth also offering a gentle exfoliation. The cleanser is a thick creamy consistency and dissolved my makeup well. In addition, the smell is quite simply put DIVINE. It’s has a delicate floral scent from the Passion Flower but still carries that rewarding ‘clean‘ smell. I was pleased that this 3-in-1 meant I didn’t need to apply another product, so it ticked the time saving box too.
The moisturiser, like wise carries that same beautiful smell and lovely thick and creamy consistency, so instead of feeling like a daily task on the never ending list of things to do, it instead gave me a moment of luxury, which I at once realised I had both been missing out on and denying myself. The fact that it is both a day and night cream added to its appeal and my desire for a fuss free regime.
My favourite of the 3 products however was the Serum. Again the smell is heavenly and I loved the packaging. It feels slightly clinical, which for a serum I never think is a bad thing and a little goes a long way. In addition, it isn’t a loose oil based but a thick gel and so was really easy to apply. Once on, my skin felt instantly smooth with a peach skin like feel to the touch. The smell was lovely to fall asleep to at night and by day it felt great under my makeup.
Over the month I definitely noticed a difference in my skin, the redness has reduced, it hasn’t disappeared completely but I have ventured out on particuarly hectic school run mornings without foundation, and felt fine doing so, which I wouldn’t have done pre SBC. I have had a few break outs but as Danielle rightly so reminded me these were envitable as I am cleansing my skin and drawing out the bad nasty toxins – this settled down after 2 weeks anyway. I’ve fallen off the wagon at times and missed a day here or there or only cleansed once, but I try not to as I do feel like I miss my nightly application of the serum. My skin definitely feels more hydrated and plump and overall less dull.
While I don’t feel the packaging for the cleanser and moisturiser feels as luxury as the product inside, I did really enjoy using it. The pump action on the cleanser is really useful in the bathroom. The serum sits proudly among my dressing table products, as I certainly prefer its packaging.
Overall I feel it’s a great value for money range, that’s very easy to use and apply. Perfect for time poor, busy working mums like myself. The smell is amazing and the results speak for themselves. In addition it has made me reassess how I treat my skin and I am now enjoying skincare rather then feeling stressed out by it.
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Natalie & Danielle xx
Words by Natalie