I discovered SkinVac products by accident on ebay. I was more than a little bit suspicious of what is basically a well packaged cloth. Still I figured that, at £3.80 + £1.55 postage and packing, if it didn’t work I wouldn’t be too much out of pocket or at least as much as if I had tried yet another scrub for me to be allergic to!
I initially bought the dermabrasion exfoliation cloth, hoping that it would be a good way to exfoliate once a week and a good indicator about the rest of their products. I ordered from the seller on ebay and the cloth came the next day. Very impressed with the speed at which it was dispatched (and at Royal Mail!).
The cloth is approximately 15cm by 15cm and roughly textured. It is applied, much like an abrasive scrub, in small circular motions over wet skin. Do not be fooled into thinking that this requires much pressure or that it is clearly not going to achieve much! I had to scale back the scrubbing action due to how sore it was feeling. Afterwards my skin felt tight, smooth and very polished. Rather akin to having a good dermabrasion treatment but for a fraction of the price. I slathered up with the Mu and my skin looked positively glowing! The redness died down over the next two days and on the third day my skin looked amazing. Like I had been subjected to treatments in a salon. I can’t help but feel quite astounded at what is “merely a cloth”!
The cloths will set you back just over a fiver (from here - ebay acount needed) and the micro abrasion cloth will last up to 100 uses. True value for money!
- Effective – gives a quality dermabrasive exfoliation
- Can vary pressure according to sensation
- Good instructions (including aftercare)
- Getting the right pressure may be hit and miss for some people
- Storage/cleaning – it’s a bit more involved then pushing a bottle onto a shelf (you need to wash and dry the cloths, but I have just been rinsing with water and letting dry in the bathroom, I guess once a week I will chuck them into the wash)
- No scent (if that’s your thing)
And not just C for Custad!
I made the Bramble Custard Cake with only a few alterations to the recipe. This is me. I never stick to recipes!
First alteration was the use of xanthum gum (one level teaspoon) to counter the crumble factor that occurs when you use gluten free flour. Also because the gluten free flour is plain, I added an extra 1.5 teaspoons of baking powder to it (a total of 3 in all).
Second sneaky addition was a few drops of vanilla essence in the custard (made with soya milk). This just brings out the taste a bit more and ties it nicely, to my mind, with the vanilla in the cake.
The cake turned out rather like pudding in that it was a little moist. That said it is tasty good and I am sure there will be little left when the custard monster descends later!
Sprouts (of the baby plants variety) are fantastically healthy things and easy to grow too. Growing them means you can harvest them to suit your tastes; the earlier the sweeter they tend to be, growing more bitter as time goes on.
To sprout seeds you need a germinator (or a glass jar) and some seeds:
Wash out sprouting jar (mine is a Biosnacky one) with washing up liquid rinsing thoroughly.
Rinse the seeds and place in jar according to the guidelines on the back (some get overcrowded easily).
Soak them overnight.
Rinse seeds in the morning (they pong!) and allow to drain. Leave to grow, remembering to rinse and drain them morning and night.
After the suggested days (3-5 in this case) harvest:
(This is a mixture of Mung Beans and Little Raddish – Biosnacky’s Strong Aromatic Mix. They can be eaten as is, sprinkled on salads, blended into soups, put in sandwiches…lots of tasty alternatives)
(This is a tofu cutlet, soya cheese, gluten free bread and ketchup…with healthy sprouts!)
I love Graze Boxes. I probably shouldn’t, but I do.
They give me four portions of fruit a day (this depends on what you choose), tastes lovely and is well presented. All the cardboard/packaging is able to be recycled and it’s a joy to receive one in the post. I mean look:
This box contained the sweetest, most wonderful fresh pineapple with a tiny wooden fork. In the other two compartments are “beach bum” (a banana, mango and coconut mix) and some good old raisins. Tasty, healthy and oh so nice!
I get them from time to time to remind me to eat better – to remind me what my five a day looks like (For the fifth, I team the box with some fruit juice for a protracted breakfast/snacks or as a lunch). It never fails. I know you can get cheaper by buying in bulk and mixing your own (but not that much cheaper actually, I have tried it.) and I know that the packing does not make it an “easy” environmental choice (but you can recycle it all, and a lot of the packaging is made from recycled produce) but it is a sure fire way to make my day!
I like the fact you can customise what to have. I removed all the non-vegan options and non-coeliac friendly ones – these will never get posted to me. I also removed things I wasn’t fond of and things that I was bored of. These can be changed though, so it’s not hard and fast. I went through a no citrus phase, now I can’t get enough!
My personal box choice is a make your own, with fresh fruit, 2 a day mix and fruit in the wee tub. This is guaranteed to hit four of your five a day. It keeps me filled up until lunch if taken as a breakfast or filled up throughout the day if taken as snacks.
If you want to try a box for a quid use this code: 8RPKF3TB. They offer me in return a pound off or a pound to the Rainforest Alliance (guess which I choose ). Edit to add M156G8FJ gives you one box free AND one half price
One of the biggies with a vegan diet is a lack of obvious Vitamin B12 in it. You can get it if you are meticulous enough with your fortified cereals/milks and so on, but I am not. I know how much soya milk I would have to get through to get my B12 and I personally couldn’t get through it reliably. So I took advice from the Vegan Society’s website about nutrition , particularly B12, and found it to be very clear and sensible.
I also read up on calcium (something I take anyway – but need to find a vegan alternative to the supplements I have), vitamin D and iodine. Iodine I was aware of needing to be careful with, largely because my thyroid is a bit dodgy and the doctor had recommended taking iodine. Vitamin D though made me think. I don’t do sunlight. It burns, gives me migraines and makes me throw up. Especially the last few years. So I reckon my vitamin D levels (especially living somewhere so dark half the year ) probably needs the support.
Happily the vegan society produce Veg 1 (buy it here), a supplement for Vegans (and others) that provides supplementation for all these vitamins and minerals (except calcium and EFA, so these will need to be sourced).
- Three months supply for less than a fiver.
- Cheap shipping.
- Quick delivery.
- Contains vitamin B12 in large amounts.
- Contains vitamin D (not from animals like it normally is).
- Contains Iodine in sensible amounts.
- Smells bad. Really offputting in the pack. Individually though the tablets don’t taste too awful
- Tastes rather evil – it’s supposed to be blackcurrant but it’s really just ick! This is especially bad as it is a chewable tablet and really you should hold it in the mouth until it is all dissolved to get optimun uptake of vitamin B12.
Despite the taste, I will definately carry on taking this. It’s an easy, inexpensive solution and I am certain it will be beneficial to my health. I do rather hope I grow to accept the taste though!
I have been using MuLondon‘s fabby moisturisers now for a week now and no breaks outs, soreness or reaction. In fact my skin looks and feels supple, soft and totally amazing! The stuff is genius!
I think I am more a lavender girl than a white chocolate truffle one though. This is awful! The white one smells out of this world! That’s not to suggest, for a second, that the lavender doesn’t. It is truly gorgeous. It’s just that the white chocolate one…honestly, you need to smell it to believe it.
As much as I adore the white chocolate, it is just too rich for my skin. So sad, but you can’t win them all. It is still a million times better than a lot of (very pricey things) I have tried! It is divine though; leaving my skin healthy and smelling gorgeous. It just leaves it a little oily looking too. I really am looking for perfection,aren’t I?! However, I think I have found it. The lavender is far more balancing for my sensitive, combination skin. It goes on smoothly; soothing the sore bits, balancing the oil, moisturising all the dry bits and it gives me a glow. What more do I need? This is a keeper!
As for the white choc? I will be using that for more hard core moisturising. Perhaps in the winter on my face or for on bits of me that remain dry no matter what I do. I shall report back on the state of the evil dry skin! I love using it as a lipbalm as well, though it may not last long like that!
I had an interesting discussion with my partner yesterday about wine. He was curious as to why I was being so specific over what wine I asked for in the shopping list. After all wine does not contain meat or animals.
Except it does.
Isinglass is a very pure form of gelatine made from the air bladders of fish. Ick! It is used to clear wine and beer through flocculating the yeast so it falls to the bottom of the container/cask as a jelly, leaving the wine or beer to be poured off as a clear substance. Obviously to get these air sacs, the fishes need to be less alive than they once were and so are clubbed, suffocated or stunned with carbon dioxide and then cut and left to bleed out.
Anyway, I have found some tasty wine that is animal free. Step up Co-Op Fairtrade Sauvingnon Blanc! Hurrah!
(There are others, it’s just that partner and I have been drinking Fairtrade Coop stuff for ages now, it’s good, relatively inexpensive and ethically a good buy…plus our local’s a Co-Op )
It’s a tricky thing, this being a Vegan. There is loads I do that isn’t entirely “right”(*) yet (I am not a model of virtue here, I cock up with the best of them) but I am trying to be ethical and consistent in my dietary choices.
(*) We can argue right and wrong some other time