So, for a while now, Lush have been using the hashtag #LushMen on their social media and has been encouraging guys to do the same, whether you're staff or our devoting customers. At first, I think we all thought it was a lovely way to gather us all up, so we could check out other skincare/beard care regimes. That was until these beauties started showing up.
As you can see above, it's a box. But it's not just an old boring, plain Jane box, it's a beautiful, custom made Lush Men care package, engraved with the glorious Lush logo, slightly changed stating 'Fresh Handmade Grooming Supplies'. I was super excited to see the box in general, that was until I opened it.
Inside is packed full of products i've come to love and devote my time and money towards. Essentially, the #LushMen idea is to promote the use of cosmetics to men and it really is working, from what i've seen. Inside, you get a lovely selection of skin and beard products, ranging from shower gels, hair conditioner and facial moisturiser. In mine, I got Grass Shower Gel, Veganese Hair Conditioner, R&B Hair Moisturiser, Cosmetic Lad facial moisturiser and Squeaky Green shampoo bar. I also got two bonus items, thanks to Michael and Jake; these are Tramp Body Lotion and the eagerly awaited Death and Decay perfume, which is set to hit stores in the New Year, if memory serves me well.
As you can see from the images (which doesn't do it justice, by the way) the box is very fitting for the whole interaction of men into the cosmetics industry. It's a rough and tough box, full of great stuff to protect though tough faces and manly beards.
If you do use Lush products and share your images on social media, please use the #LushMen hashtag and they'll get picked up by other Lush men.
Michael and I have always had an amazing relationship, whether it's in a social group or just us. We have the most amazing laughs, we catch up on our social lives and share some personal irritations. He's the best person to get it all out to, since we have a very similar view on things. He's someone I can express my true emotions and opinions with and, unlike many, he doesn't shy away from a queer or sexual topics, which is something I'm always talking about, since I have so many thoughts on those matters.
Hopefully it won't be long until we have another one of our little days out, as they're severely missed.
If you're like me and you're always looking for ways to improve your beard, its softness and its quality, you'll most likely love this product. Another Lush one, but a bloody good one at that! Lush have a huge selection of hair care, ranging from shampoos, conditioners, styling creams and now, moustache wax, but for me their ultimate hair care product is Hair Doctor.
I've spoke about Hair Doctor before and I can't stress just how much I love the stuff. Coming in pots of 95g, it is packed full of goodness that does your hair wonders...beard including!
Packed full of seaweed and Fuller's earth, a lovely cleansing ingredient, Hair Doctor softens the hair, restores it to full health and leaves it feeling rich and tingly. Suggested instructions say to leave it on the hair for 20 minutes before rinsing it off. I usually leave it for about 25-30, but that's just me and that's for my beard as well as my scalp.
In the time it's on the hair, the lovely and rich Irish moss powder, peppermint and seaweed will work into the hair strands, nourishing and softening them as it does so. For my scalp, i'll rinse it off and then go in with Big shampoo, but for my beard i'll rinse it off and just leave it at that, skipping the shampoo step. Others do it differently, but for me, leaving it at that does exactly what I want. It's trial and error and you should do what you feel is best.
Other ingredients are as follows: Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, Organic Jojoba Oil, Almond Oil, Red Henna, Chamomile Blue Oil, Soya Lecithin, Rosemary Absolute and Glycerine.
As you can see, i've also got on a coat of Mask of Magnaminty (self preserving) in the images, which i've spoke about here, this is an extra step that can be added if you wish. It contains lots of honey which will also help soften the hair. You may also notice that I go down the neck with both products, this is purely my own decision.
I've been using Hair Doctor for about three years now and I've never been let down by it. My hair and beard are always left feeling soft, nourished and looking healthy. It's definitely a must have for those who strive for beard perfection.
To store your Hair Doctor, you should keep it sealed in a refrigerator until the date stated on the tub, but it's usually around 3 weeks.
For someone who has a oily skin throughout the year, despite the constant change in the weather, I needed a good, rich skincare routine to help tame the oily beasts living in my skin and i've found it after some tinkering with products. Let me share it with you!
Lush have always satisfied me with products in my need and fight to guide my oily skin through the winter months without over drying the skin and leaving me like a flaky left over pie on Boxing Day and for that I thank them dearly.
This year saw two changes to my skin routine, 1) Mask of Magnaminty is now Self Preserving and long gone is the previous formulation from my routine (though it's still available in stores and online) and 2) Kalamazoo Beard and Facial Wash has been introduced, the newest Lush product aimed to cleanse and soften beards and skin. So let me walk you through this routine!
I'll guide you using the image above.
First off we have Mask of Magnaminty over the T zone. I use this in the T zone because I personally don't get a very oily forehead, but still want the deep cleanse and cooling that the product gives you. Kaolin gets deep into your pores and gives them a good cleanse without doing damage and Mask of Mag is loaded with the stuff, so that's ideal. It also has talc which is absorbing and honey which is moisturising. So in general, it's perfect for my T Zone! As mentioned before, it's now Self Preserving and by that I mean the new formulation of Mask of Mag has an increased Honey content, allowing it to preserve itself.
Mask of Magnaminty Self Preserving/Preserved is available in stores and online for £5.25 125g / £9.25 315g
Moving onto the centre of the face and cheeks. Here I use Dark Angels facial cleanser. This is the area of the face that I get most breakouts, when they do actually break out. I am quite thankful that, despite having this more oily area, due to my glasses, I still don't get a lot of breakouts, but I don't want to neglect and risk any and that's where dark angels comes into play. Dark Angels is loaded Rhassoul Mud which is another form of a cleanser, so again this helps get deep into the pores and give them a deep clean. It also has lots of Powdered Charcoal which is amazing at absorbing oils from the skin and that's what I really bought the product for.
I've used charcoal based cleansers before, but they were loaded with chemicals that I really wasn't happy about having on the skin, so I swapped it as soon as Lush developed this beauty. It also contains Black Sugar which is a lovely exfoliant and Rosewood Oil, a natural antiseptic that also has uplifting qualities.
Dark Angels is available in stores and online for £6.40 100g
Now the beard and Kalamazoo. I have searched and searched for a product that wasn't a moisturiser and wasn't a mask for my beard. I wanted something that softened, added shine and left it with a nice scent and Lush have nailed it once again. One of the more recent products to be introduced to our never ending catalogue, Kalamazoo acts both as a beard wash and a general facial wash that really works! The fresh Pineapple does a brilliant job at cleansing the skin, while the Apricot Kernel Oil and Cupacu Butter softens the hair and skin wonderfully. The scent is citrus as the product also contains Lime Oil and Brazilian Orange Oil and boy does it linger and I love that.
Kalamazoo is available in stores and online for £6.50 110g
And that's my autumn/winter skincare! I hope anyone who tries any of the product i've mentioned have the same results as I do, because they're really great. They leave your skin feeling great and looking blemish free and that's the aim of the game really, isn't it? Below is an image of my skin at the moment. The image had not been altered in any way so you can see the results this little combination can potentially give you. My beard is lovely and soft, smelling great and tamed while my skin is soft, oil free and fairly tight, it's amazing, I can't lie.