Thursday, 27 June 2013

Review: Emma Hardie Professional Facial Starter Kit

What better way to start off a blog than with a review of my favourite new things.

N.B This is a lengthy post - so scroll down if you're just looking for a review of a specific item!

If you're a fan of Pixiwoo or Caroline Hirons at BeautyMouth, you may have heard them talk about their love for the Morninga Cleansing Balm which they both rave about. After reading a couple of reviews I thought I'd bite the bullet and purchase – with my ever depleting bank account – the starter kit, which includes the Morninga Cleansing Balm, along with Rosehip Exfoliation Seeds, AM/PM Hydrating and Firming Treatment Moisturiser, Firming Eye Serum and a Dual Action Buff and Polish Cleansing Cloth, which, and not to rain on your parade, is pretty much a glorified flannel.

But I was super excited anyway because I always use my hands to wash my face, and haven't used a flannel since I was six.
They also kindly gave me some Lifting and Firming Face Cream for all of my wrinkles – which unfortunately I have none, so I can't really review that – and a flannel headband, so my hair doesn't get sticky.
 On first appearance these are beautifully packaged in tiny little frosted pots with gold accents, which make me feel very elegant and christmassy. But most of all, they smell fantastic.
I opened the box to a beautiful waft of lemongrass and some kind of delicious floral scent, that made me want to empty the lot in to my bath and wallow around in it until my skin went pruney.
However, I refrained, and decided to savour the lot for a skin treat.

Really quickly I want to give you an overview of the brand because I really like what's happening there. Firstly, it's a British brand – yay! - and whilst I have nothing against American skin care brands, they can be a pain to get hold of in the UK because we're a bit behind the times over here. I paid for standard delivery (3-5 days) and they came the next day, so I'm not complaining in the slightest.

Emma Hardie founded her brand back in 1996 with a new facial technique, creating products that focused on rejuvenation of skin. Since then, she's led workshops all over the world, and is sought after by people everywhere. Her brand won the Beauty Insiders 'Best New Brand - Prestige' award in 2011.
Evidently this woman knows what she's talking about, and is up there in the cream of the crop when it comes to skincare, so I really wanted to try some of the products.

 Firstly the AM/PM Morninga Cleansing Balm: 

 I was intrigued by this as I usually use a facewash to rid my pores of the days make up and grime, so using a balm made me feel very exotic and grown up. And I have to say, I really love it. My skin is way too oily to use this both AM and PM, so I just stick to evening, but it's defitinetely thanking me for it.

The set comes with a little leaflet as well, describing facial massage techniques, which although time consuming would be lovely for a Sunday when you're giving your skin a break and a bit of TLC. The balm goes on like a slightly tighter lotion texture – if that makes any sense, it smells very fresh and zingy and the scent lingers delicately afterwards so that my face smells yummy. I apply it all over with my fingers, give a quick rub starting from my nose working outwards, a little goes a very long way in this case, then take the product over the eyes to get rid of any eye make up, which is does well considering I only wear waterproof eye make up.
Then rinse it off using a towel, or, if you're fancy, a double action buffing and polishing cleansing cloth.
My skin doesn't feel dry at all after using it, just comfortable and healthy. So if you've got dry skin, this would work wonders, since there's no soap in it, and you can layer up with the moisturiser afterwards.

 Exfoliating Rosehip Seeds: 

 I'll admit, this was a novelty, never before have I used an exfoliator which I had to create myself, and I did spend a good five minutes considering what was the best way to go about doing this. I didn't want to scoop out a lump of Morninga Cleansing Balm and mix the two on my hand incase I didn't use it all. So I rubbed the balm over my face first, then tipped a little of the seeds in to my palm, and mixed them with the cleansing balm on my face.

The result was better than I had expected. My go to scrub is St Ives, because the grains are sandy rather than beady, and this was a similar texture. And with this, I feel like I could go back to exfoliating once or twice a week rather than every day.

 AM/PM Hydrating and Firming Moisturiser: 

 As soon as I touched this I knew it was going to be too heavy for my skin. As an oily chick, I need something super light or in a gel formula and this is very rich. Not to discard it though, I used it on my elbows and knees before fake tanning and it moisturised them well.
I would probably recommend this for someone with a dryer skin, as with the rest of the products in this set though, it smells fantastic.

 Firming Eye Serum: 

 Not to lie, I am new to eye make up removers, eye treatments and creams, because well, I'm a little lazy when it comes to skin care. I got a tester of the Benefit Brightening Eye Cream, which was good and noticeably made my eyes look brighter. Similarly, I did notice a different with this Emma Hardie product, after applying it morning and evening for two weeks, the underneath of my eye is definitely firmer and my bags less prominent when smiling, which is always good. I pat this on all round my eye, and down on to my cheekbone, adding more as needed. I especially like the serum consistency, I find it smooths the skin out, making a good base to put make up over.

 Out of all of these, I think the Morninga Cleansing Balm would be my favourite, and once I run out, I'll probably save up and re purchase – the full size retails at £34.00, but is industrial sized and would last forever. My other thought is that these products were designed with a slightly more mature skin in mind than my twenty year old plump face, but I'll definitely keep this brand in mind when choosing future skin care.

 You can purchase the full range at  or the Emma Hardie website.

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