How to get your feet ready for spring!

Hello beauties! I hope you are all good. So spring is here and this is the time of year to get out your sandles and sunglasses and enjoy what sun we get! But there is one thing we have to prepare… And that’s our feet! We all do it.. We all forget about our feet in the winter. They are hidden away in closed shoes for months and months and we just forget to take care of them! I thought to myself last year that I was gonna try and take care of my feet throughout winter. I did.. For a couple of months.. And then totally forgot! But have no fear, I have wrote up this post so we can all get our feet ready for spring and in to those new sandals you just brought!

Hard Skin
Heels get thick skin in the winter. Before I shower I use the Scholl Velvet Smooth Express Pedi Electronic Foot File. It’s great because it takes all the effort out of filing your feet. The file has a roller head that turns and you just apply a little pressure to remove any thick skin. Don’t press to hard though or it just stops! This is currently available at Boots for £29.99! It’s so worth it. So much better then those pumice stones, and less effort too!

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Foot Scrub
I realise you aren’t gonna have time all the time to file down your dry skin.. Cause it does take a while! So in between treatment I use The Body Shop Peppermint Soothing Pumice Foot Scrub. The exfoliating volcanic rock granules help to slough away rough patches of hardened skin, to leave feet femininely soft, smooth and freshly fragrant. Perfectly prepared for those strappy sandals! You can get a 100ml tub for £7 which is pretty good…
and it smells amazing!

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Moisturiser
One product i have been loving lately is something I got some Christmas, which is Soap and Glory Heel Genius. I apply this at night after my shower and put some cotton socks on I got from Avon and go to bed! In the morning my feet feel amazingly soft. This is currently available at Boots for £5.50 for a 125ml tube which lates a while! Still haven’t gotten through mine yet!

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Toe Hair!
Everyone has it, some more than others. You can remove toe hair any way you like.. depilatory, shave, wax, whatever works. Removing toe hair is one of those little things that can make your feet look smooth and polished!

After all that, all you have to do is paint your nails! That’s the fun part. What products have you been using to get your feet into shape ready for spring?

What Exactly Are Serums?

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Years ago, I remember not having a clue what serums were. I used to date a guy who’s mom worked on Harley Street and used to get loads of samples of serums and other products. Boy do I wish he was still around! But anyway.. There is a big difference between moisturisers and serums, and I don’t think alot of people know those differences or the benefits of adding serums to your daily skincare routine. So I thought I would do this post for those people that might not be too sure. Serums have become increasingly popular over the last few years and continue to remain so.

So what is the difference between moisturisers and serum?
Anyone that has used a serum will know that the big difference you first notice is the consistency. Moisturisers tend to be thick and creamy, where as serums are light, fast absorbing liquids. Another difference which isn’t so easy to spot (unless you look at the ingredients and understand them) is their active ingredients. Serums are specifically designed to penetrate and treat various skin conditions, such as redness, dehydration or lack or firmness, wrinkles, dark spots or to brighten the skin. Moisturiser will only penetrative your first layer of skin, where as serums nourish your deeper layers. Serums are designed with smaller molecules to easily penetrate all three layers of skin, and deliver potent doses of active ingredients, such as vitamins and antioxidants. They are pretty much designed to give results. Moisturisers have larger molecules, which means they can only penetrate the first layer of skin, allowing them to only hydrate and seal in moisture.

So what are the benefits of serums?
The main reason for wanting to use a facial serum is to get added nutrients into deeper layers of your skin that a regular moisturiser is not able to reach. There are many serums that are specially designed to battle your common beauty complaints, you just need to pick the right one for your problem! Alot of people who have oily skin prefer serums to moisturisers because serums are very lightweight and don’t have the thicker, heavier ingredients. Another great thing about serums is that you don’t need to change your current skincare routine, they are easily incorporated. You also don’t need to use alot. Serums can be expensive due to active ingredients being more expensive then thickeners, but when applied properly, a container of serum should last months. Many brands come in pump bottles or have medicine dropper applicators to dispense just the tiny amount you need.
So how so I pick the right one for me?
There are so many choices of serums these days for all different skin conditions, but the most important thing is to keep in mind your skin type, whether you have dry, oily, combination or sensitive skin. You need to sit down and think what problems you want to work on, and find products that contain ingredients to combat these issues. For aging, you need products with antioxidants, retinol which is commonly referred to as vitamin A. Some skin serum ingredients are useful in fading dark spots, so you need to look out for Hydroquinone if that’s your problem, and for dry skin, look out for hyaluronic acid which is a natural protein used to absorb moisture and reduce edema, promotes resistance to compression of the cells. The key is consistency with any skincare product. Try a serun for a month before giving up on it. It can be trial and error, but eventually you’ll find the best face serum for your needs.

So how do I apply serums?
If you have dry skin, apply the serum while your skin is still damp. This will help lock in as much moisture as possible. If you have sensitive skin, wait 10-15 minutes after washing your face before using your serum. When your skin is damp, applying a water bases product is more likely to lead to irritation with sensitive skin. Allow your skin to completely dry. After applying your serum, you can apply your staple moisturiser.

So that’s everything I think to need to know! If you would like to know more, and I have an answer, I’ll do my best to answer you!

What serums do you use? Let me know!

How tea tree oil diminished my spider veins

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I kind of discovered this totally by accident. I’ve looked into how to remove them before, but never thought of natural remedies. I’ve suffered with spider veins around my nose for a long time. It’s the main reason I wear foundation. I’ve always been very conscious about it, and I’ve even looked into lasertherapy to have them removed. Lasertherapy was always going to be the last resort, but I have looked into products like Skin Doctors Vein Away Plus, but they haven’t had very good reviews, and when people say it has worked, it’s been over using the product for a very long time.

So what are spider veins?
Spider veins are like varicose veins but smaller. They also are closer to the surface of the skin than varicose veins. Often, they are red or blue. They can look like tree branches or spiderwebs with their short, jagged lines. They can be found on the legs and face and can cover either a very small or very large area of skin.

So what causes them?
There isn’t really one reason, there are many reasons. It tend to develop as we age and our skin and blood vessels become less elastic. Hormonal changes associated with pregnancy and menopause are thought to provoke their development, which is the reason why women are more prone to them than men. You can also inherit a family tendency to the problem. Other causes include too much sunbathing, exposure to wind or extreme temperatures, cortico-steroid medicines and radiotherapy. Jobs that involve prolonged standing may aggravate the condition, but they don’t actually cause it.

My mom had spider veins, so I’m assuming I have them because she did. I started using tea tree oil because i was having a really bad break out that I wanted to control. I had a spot right on the end of my nose, I looked like Rudolph. So I was pretty much applying it around my nose and on my nose. I noticed after using it a week that my spider veins started to diminish. They haven’t gone all together by all means, but they certainly are much less noticeable then before. I only wish I had taken a before before to show you the difference, but I don’t tend to take pictures without makeup on!

It should come as no surprise that tea tree oil is a powerful ingredient that’s shown to help treat spider veins. Aloe vera and tea tree oil can be used together to successfully help combat varicose veins. Research has revealed that they help control inflammation, swelling, redness and discomfort in cases of mild to moderate varicose veins. Other essential oils can also be used for spider veins, such as lemon, lavender, rosemary, cypress, neroli and chamomile oil. You will want to make sure to have a good carrier oil with which to mix these, such as jojoba or almond oil.

I hope this helps out someone else that suffers from spider veins. I’m currently using a superdrug own brand tea tree oil spot stick, and it’s been working fine for me!

Do you suffer from spider veins? Do you have any other natural remedies? Or do you use tea tree for any other skin problems? Let me know!

What’s The Difference Between BB, CC & DD Cream?

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I get asked about the difference between BB, CC & DD creams quite a lot. So I thought I would do a post about it for everyone that might not be too sure. These tinted creams have been around for a while now and have taken the beauty world by storm.

BB Cream

A little bit of information..
BB stands for Beauty Balm and it was originally developed in Germany. It was the start of many tinted creams. It was developed to be used for skin care following a cosmetic surgery procedure. It used to stand for Blemish Balm, until it hit the US, and there is was renamed. It firstly caught on in Korea, and then became a must have beauty product in most of East Asia. The product is alot different in Korea then the western version. They tend to be thicker with higher levels of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide for more opaque sun protection, and foundation-like coverage. They also produce a whiter appearance on skin. Western BB creams are more like a tinted moisturiser. Some people actually use it as a primer to get a fuller coverage, rather then switching to a heavier foundation.

What are the benefits?
It’s great if you have good skin and just want to have a bit of a glow. It provides some amount of coverage but leaves a more sheer finish. Obviously it all depends on different brands formulas, but what ever country you purchase this in, the popular benefits form using it is daily sun protection, skin lightening, extra hydration, and some have anti aging ingredients. Pretty much an all round product! Perfect for everyday use. I wouldn’t stop using your usual anti aging creams though, because there isn’t usually alot of anti aging ingredients in them. Use them as a supplement, not a replacement!

CC Cream

A little bit of information..
CC stands for Colour Correcting. After the beauty world exploded with its sister formula BB,  CC was created for those people that cried out for the same benefits, but with a fuller coverage. The first CC cream appeared in 2010 by the product of a Singapore-based brand Rachel K. They usually provide more coverage then BB creams, but this isn’t always the case.

What are the benefits?
It provides the same multitasking benefits as BB cream. They also contain ingredients that can cover flaws such as dark spots and redness, give life to dull complexions, and even out skin tone with light diffusing particles, while still feeling light weight.

DD Cream

A little bit of information..
DD stands for Daily Defence, but they are also sometimes known as Dynamic Do-All and Dermatologist’s Dream, depending on the brand. It’s the latest in this trend that isn’t as recognised as it’s predecessors.

What are the benefits?
They are supposed to provide more coverage then BB, but with more anti aging benefits then CC. They can also protect the skin’s barrier to prevent moisture loss, which is great for people with dry skin. But it’s stronget power is its anti aging claims. They usually have some combination of botanical oils, hyaluronic acid, antioxidants, and peptides. They are best used by people who want to focus on improving tone and diminishing fine lines and wrinkles overtime.

What BB, CC & DD creams have you used? Any you can recommend? Let me know!

Finding Your Foundation Match Online

Hello beauties! So i did a post recently about How To Pick The Perfect Foundation. It went down very well, but i had a comment from Gwenllian Branwen telling me that you can actually find your match online too! Whenever the sales come about online, I’m always really annoyed that i can’t take advantage of the Foundation offers if i haven’t tried out that brand of foundation before. So i thought i would bring this to the attention of the people that didnt know about it and give you my opinions on the sites. I wanted to compare a few website to see what the results gave me, because they are all going to be working off different algorithms. I picked the first 3 that came up on my Google search.

I first tried Findation. This site let’s you insert multiple foundations you have tired before and have been a match for you. I first only put in one match to see how that would work out. I put in Boots No.7 Beautifully Matte Foundation – 43 Calico. I went looking for another foundation i know suits my skintone which is Mac in NW13. It actually came up with 3 different mac shades. NC15, NW15 and NW13.
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I didnt see any other ones i know are a match for me, so i decided to add one more to see what the results would show then. It does explain that for best results, tell us at least one more shade you’ve used before. So i did. I put in MAC — Studio Fix Fluid NW 13. The shades were still quite varied so i decided to put another which was Max Factor Facefinity 3 in 1 – 40 Light Ivory.
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After this most of my matches came up with either Porcelain or Ivory, which i kind of expected, although there was a Sand and a Beige that came up which i would think would be way too dark for me. Its hard to tell to be honest because they dont give you a swatch to look at, just a shade name. It also only gives you a run down of the product from what the brand says and no personal opinions. It’s pretty useful for those brands that don’t go by the usual names of foundations.

The next Website i checked out was Temptalia. You can start from scratch on this one or you can add current matches.
I decided to start from scratch first to see how it worked out.
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The first question i was asked was What is your primary Undertone? It explains the different undertones and tells you how you can find out yours, which is very useful if your not too familiar with undertones. So since i have Blue veins on my wrist, i am a cooler Pink undetone.
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The last question it asks you is what skin tone you have. It gives you 9 options ranging from Fairest to Deep Dark. It gives you examples underneath of the different shades that are associated with Skintones, and also a list of the different undertones and then a run down of the different skintones with examples of popular matches. I couldn’t make my mind up between Fairest and Fair because i wasnt a match for the Mac in either. Fairest was giving me NW10, and Fair was giving me NW15. So i decided to just pick the one nearest to NW13 which would be NW15, that being Fair.

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Going though my matches, i then saw Mac Studio Fix Fluid NW15, NW13 and NW10. This is is going to be useful for someone that is completely new to the world of foundation and wants to know about the different shades they should look out for, but i wouldnt really recommend choosing a shade from this section because they vairy quite a bit, even when you put your actual match for one brand and foundation, it still seems to give you different shades in the same!
The second option is to use an existing foundation you use to get matches for other brands. I put in the current one I’m using which is MAC — Studio Fix Fluid NW 13. Since it didn’t seem to like me putting my No7 foundation in. You can filter your results by what finish, coverage and price which i think is really handy since people have favourites.

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I noticed while looking through my matches that in the Revlon Nearly Naked foundation, i was matched to 6 different shades! Not very accurate if you ask me as from just looking at the swatches I can see that all of them except ivory would be too dark. I like the swatches sk you can compare though unlike Findation. I prefer Fination’s method of adding a few different brands to get the best match though. It gives you a description of the product, but again their is no personal opinions.

The next website i went to was Match My Makeup. This one you only have to enter what you currently use (if its a match, of course!) Again i entered MAC — Studio Fix Fluid NW 13 as they didn’t recognise Boots No7. The selection seemed alot better then Temptalia. I got a couple of matches where i had a few shades in the same foundation, but they were all quite similar.

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It gives you a little swatch to look at, like the ones you would see in the drugstores which is useful. The one thing i enjoyed about this one is that you can see what the brand says about the product, and what they said about it too which is what i like. You can’t always just go by what the brand says, which is why we do our beauty blogs.. to give you our opinion on what its really like! The one thing that annoyed me however is that when they had a few shades of the same foundation in your results, they werent next to eachother. It might be me being picky, but thats just how i felt.

Overall I feel that they all have their good points. But I don’t think I’d completely trust a match on their to purchase a brand of foundation I’m not too familar with online, since they can be so varied. I like how you can put multiple matches into Findation so you have a more accurate match, I like how you have large swatches on temptalia and how you can filter your results for different finishes, cost and coverage and I like on Match My Makeup that they give your their own opinion on the product. I think they can all learn from one another. On the plus side, I like having an idea of what to look for if I was to try a new brand. Every cloud has a silver lining! I may actually go into store and try out some of the matches they have all recommended me if you would all be intersted in a follow up. I’d be quite intersted to be honest, especially with the Beige and Sand matches!

Have you ever used one of these websites? What were your experiences?

How to pick the perfect foundation

I remember when I was a kid and I was totally clueless that my foundation just didn’t suit my skin type or even match. It didn’t help that I couldn’t afford the Department Store brands where you can actually get matched up by a make up artist, that’s the only downfall of drugstore brands. But it you know what your doing, and hopefully you will after this post, you won’t be as clueless as I was!

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What makes a perfect foundation?
First things first… The right foundation shade will dissappear onto your skin. Meaning that it’s the right colour for your skin tone. There is nothing worse then buying a bottle of foundation and it being  a shade too dark or light for your skin. Not a good look. It also shouldn’t settle into fine lines or pores. It should also cover up any redness or unevenness without looking obvious.

Do your research
I research all of my foundations before I buy them, especially high end. There is nothing better then reviews from the beauty blog world for unbiased opinions. The blogger will usually answer questions too if you want to know something about the foundation. (I always make sure I answer my questions I hope other people do too!)

Have a clean canvas
There is no point going to buy a new foundation with a face full of the stuff on, because you won’t get a true colour. Always make sure you properly clean, cleanse and exfoliate your skin to get the most accurate colour.

Know your skin type
Foundations are formulated for different skin types, so knowing yours is important. The different types are oily, dry, combination, normal and sensitive.
If your skin is oily, look for words like “oil-free,” “oil-control” or “mattifying” on the bottle.
Women with dry skin should look for moisturizing foundations with “hydrating” or “moisture-rich” wording on the bottle. Foundations containing glycerin glide on easily.
For combination skin, determine if you’re more oily or dry and go from there. Cream-to-powder bases work great for combination skin. Mineral foundations work well on all skin types, especially sensitive skin.

Decide what coverage you want
I personally love to have a full coverage because i have some spider veins around my nose that I just have to cover up. If you have good skin but just want to even out some imperfections, then a light coverage is for you. If you have blemished or uneven skin tone then choose a medium coverage. Medium coverage can be built up for a fuller look (but always check if your choice can be built up because not all do this well!)

Always make sure you try before you buy!
I wouldn’t dare leave a shop with a new foundation without even trying it. Foundations can look very different in the bottle then it does on your face. Always make sure you take advantage of those samples that are available to you in drugstores. But if you can afford Department store make up, ask one of the make up artists to do a colour match for you. They will usually apply the foundation and then you can shop around and see how you feel about it and then come back later. There is no better test then wearing it for a couple of hours!

How to test out samples in Drugstores
The first thing I will say is don’t apply foundation to your hand for a colour match. Your hand and your face will most likely have totally different tones. I see so many people, kids and adults, applying fountain to their hands. Why not apply it to the place your gonna actually wear it? I usually use my jaw line. I tend to pick 3 shades and see which one disappears. When you think you have the one, try it on a large area of your face. I always take a compact mirror with me when shopping for foundation so I can go outside in the natural light to check out the shade. The lights in drugstores can be harsh, so always choose the shade that passes the natural light test.

I hope you have learnt something from this post and if you have some tips for me I’d greatly appreciate them! We never stop learning, and I’m constantly learning new tips! I’ll keep you updated if I find anything else useful!

EDIT: I’ve received some other really great tips in my comments so I thought I would share them with you!

beckinablog said that if she doesn’t want to try them on her face, she gets a tester of a shade she already knows is a match for her and compare the old foundation to the new one. Great for if it’s a spur of the moment purchase when you already have a full face of make up on.

gwenllianbranwen also said that there are also loads of websites that you can type in foundations you match and then they suggest over brands and the colours you suit.

Clutteredcloset had one idea that I’m disappointed in myself for not thinking of. Carry around an acrylic pot to take samples away or if a counter has no samples, they can put it in the pot for you to take away! Brilliant idea! Stock up your acrylic pots girls!

Keep them coming, I’ll tag everyone that I think is a really good tip!

Ways to use Egyptian Magic

So you’ve probably seen me post a bit lately about Egyptian Magic. I recently brought a full sized tub, so I’ve been researching different ways you can actually use this, and I thought I would share it with you beautiful people! The quotes featured in my post are all from the testimonials section of Egyptian Magics website from their customers.

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Moisturiser
This is the most obvious use, and the one it’s well known for. It only takes a small amount to intensely moisturise your skin. Containing only 6 natural ingredients Honey, Beeswax, Olive Oil, Royal Jelly, Bee Pollen and Bee Propolis, this miracle in a tub packs a punch. It’s free of additives, preservatives, fragrances, chemicals or parabens. 

.. the other day I ran out of my night eye cream and was looking at the tub of this stuff and tried it under my eyes. WOW! My eyes looked great the next morning. The next night I tried it all over my face. My skin looked amazing the next day. I was so hesitant to try this, as I have super oily skin, large pores, etc.

Face Mask
If you suffer from dry skin, this stuff will fix that! Recently with the weather change, I’ve had a few patches of dry skin on my face. After cleansing your face, all you need to do is use a bit more then you usually would to just moisturise your skin to mask your face. Wait 20 minutes for it to penetrate your skin and wash off with a warm washcloth. 

I try a lot of products from lotions and creams to skin treatments and more (it’s one of the great perks of the biz). However, so many “it” creams can be torture for the skin. When I tried Egyptian Magic, my skin was moisturized, glowing and blemish free.

Treating Cuts
I’ve read a lot of reviews saying it helps heal small cuts faster.

there were several times myself and my crew used it… it was great for cuts, which we all had many of since we were climbing and trekking all over Bolivia

Healing Scars
I’ve tried out quite a few products that promise to diminish scars. I have one above my eyebrow, so I’m looking forward to see if this works. 

I woke up and glanced in the mirror and just couldn’t believe what I saw! The red scar marks on my face had diminished and just the overall quality of my skin looked better than it ever had!

After using your product for nearly 3 months, the appearance of my scars are barely there. I have tried everything from dermabrasion to mederma nothing worked. Your product has made my once really red dark scars into light pink spots on my skin. I have only used half the bottle, imagine when I finish the bottle. I am absolutely amazed, I don’t have to wear makeup if I don’t want to and my confidence is so much higher.

Healing Eczema
Alot of people prefer using this natural cream, rather then the creams prescribed by doctors due to long term use of steroids worrying people.

my 21-month-old daughter who has a bad case of eczema on her arm. Her doctor prescribed two different cortisone creams; neither worked. We saw a dermatologist who prescribed a third, and rather than go that route I have been using Egyptian Magic on her twice a day. I have seen a huge difference since we have started using it on a regular basis. The irritation and inchiness has subsided.

Hair Treatment
You can use it to get those fly away hairs in place, control frizz, or just slap it on after washing your hair as a conditioner!

I’ve been travelling in South East Asia for the past few weeks and my hair was suffering from the humidity! It’s very difficult hair and doesn’t respond well to much so for most of my trip I sported the Frizzy Look. Thankfully I found someone one who looked as though they had my type of hair but it looked perfectly curly with no frizzies in sight. Upon asking this guy what he was using to combat the elements and maintain the Shirley Temple curls despite the 99% humidity, he pulled out a tub of Egyptian Magic Cream. It is fantastic stuff! 

Treating Burns
If treating burns, apply at least 24 hours after the burn, so the heat isn’t conducted under the cream, but rather helps to heal the sore patch

While cleaning up I ran across it and used it on a burn I had. I thought I was going to be scarred from the way it wasn’t healing but once I put your Cream on it you can’t even tell I was burnt. I now never have the jar out of my sight. 

Treating Furniture
I was shocked reading this one, but it can also give your furniture a new lease of life!

I used it to pleasing effect on my feet that evening and as I read the ingredients it occurred to me that it might be perfect for attempting to rub the scratches out that my 1914 Ellington upright grand piano suffered in her last move. I’ve got to tell you I got more than a little carried away after seeing how well it worked and the piano now looks better than I’ve ever seen it. It not only cleaned and removed scratches from the surface but also gave the tiger mahogany a beautiful deep lustre.

 

Treating Acne Scars
My friend has bad ache scars from when she was younger, so I’m gonna show her this one!

I used to have a face full of acne when I was young. I am 40 years old and have an oily skin besides having a bumpy skin because of the breakout. I didn’t expect much since the cream was greasy. To my surprise, however, I have a great skin condition after applying it overnight. After a while, the skin surface got smooth. In my entire 40 years, I have the most beautiful skin now.

Treating Wrinkles
I had some wrinkles that were looking quite deep under my eyes. It was getting me down, and it worked for me. They haven’t completely gone, but they look a hell of alot smoother then they did!

I had two major wrinkles on my forehead. No cosmetic product helped improve the situation. The wrinkles started fading away after using your product, and people tell me that I look younger these days.

Treating Insect Bites
Everyone knows the pain of an insect bite… When we had our cat, he always got fleas no matter how hard we tried to keep them away. Could of done with some of this then!

I was bitten by a black-fly. I was really concerned, I was recommended your cream. Within one day, the itchiness and pain got better.

Treating Lips
This is another obvious one. The texture of the cream is alot like vaseline, so it kinda makes sense!

My lip were very rough and dry. Any type of lipsticks made my lip swollen. With your cream, my lip got better.

So those are some of the testimonials I’ve found that I thought were quite good. I’m really looking forward to using this product in different ways, hopefully not for any burns and cuts any time soon though, for obvious painful reasons! How have you used Egyptian Magic?