Balm Balm Little Miracle Rosehip Serum

Balm Balm Little Miracle rosehip serum

I adore organic beauty products and recently I have been testing out several new brands to find skincare that is both green and affordable. While browsing for a new face oil, I came across the Little Miracle Rosehip Serum by Balm Balm. I was rather curious about the brand as I have never tried anything by Balm Balm before and at a mere £14.50 (about $18 / €16) a bottle it certainly met the affordability criterium. So, is this a little miracle?

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Empties: Miniature Edition

Empties Miniature Edition

End of the month again, so time to have a look at the products I finished this month. It is a bit of a special edition, as each of these products is a tester. I had so many of these lying around and decided to work my way through them and collect them all in a single post. Obviously, you can’t really test a skincare product properly from a small sample, so I will just be giving you my first impressions on these.

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Follow Your Bliss: Be.Loved Serum

Be.Loved organic skincare follow your bliss tangarine balancing face serum

Last week, I introduced you to Latvian natural brand Be.Loved through their Rose Rain toner. Now I love my rosewater (and really anything rose), so the true test of this brand was in the second product I tried: their Follow Your Bliss Tangerine Balancing Face Serum*.

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Get your Glow on: Bettes Beauty Serum *

Some of you may have spotted several products* by Bettes Handmade Organic Skincare in my current autumn skincare routine. This great Danish brand is run by the lovely Mette, who creates all products by hand using home grown herbs. Sounds like an amazing job and the entire range is a dream come true for an organic skincare lover like myself, so naturally I jumped at the opportunity to try the products. I want to kick off the reviews with the Beauty Serum*.

Bettes Handmade Organic Skincare Beauty Serum

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First Impression: Kiehl’s Skincare

Kiehl’s is one of those brands I had noticed before, but I had never gotten around to trying any of their products. A recent quest for a facial sunscreen with high protection that works underneath my make-up led me to their Ultra Light Daily UV Defense. I will do a post on facial sunscreen later this week where I will talk about that a little more, but the lovely sales lady also gave me four samples from Kiehl’s skincare range. A great introduction to the brand and I thought I would share my first impressions with you.

Kiehls Skincare First Impressions

The first sample I received is the Ultra Facial Cream. This is a light moisturiser, which Kiehl’s claim provides 24h hydration. I am a little baffled by this idea: if the period between applying your day and night cream is truly that long you should reconsider your schedule 😉 This was a lovely light cream, but nothing truly special.

The second sample was the Creamy Eye Treatment. This eye cream is based on Avocado oil and suitable for sensitive eyes. Kiehl’s claim that the unique texture prevents it from migrating into your eyes. I have to agree the texture was different, but not in a good way. It is very tacky and difficult to spread: it sure stays put where you place it. The downside is a tricky application that involves tugging on your delicate under eye area. Loved the hydration, but the texture makes it a no-go for me.

Kiehls Skincare First Impressions

I also received a sample of the Midnight Recovery Eye, a blend of essential oils without any parabens, silicones or fragrance. The texture of this is a lot better than the Creamy Eye Treatment, but after a couple of days I noticed a reaction from my sensitive eyes. Really unfortunate, as I loved it up until then.

The final sample was the Midnight Recovery Concentrate, Kiehl’s renowned serum. This fluid serum is great. It is very light and truly makes your skin look healthy and glowing. It works just as well as my normal organic facial oils and I prefer it over the Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Serum. Kiehls Skincare First Impressions

A bit of a mixed bag: I loved the serum but the other products weren’t really for me. Keep in mind that these are first impressions based on the testers, not full product reviews, but I find you can usually tell if the product isn’t really suited for you based on a tester. Seeing if it really makes a positive difference takes a couple of weeks of proper testing. Have you tried Kiehl’s? Any other recommendations on what I should try next?

Brilliant or bust? Clinique Smart Custom-Repair Serum

Looking for a new serum? Clinique’s latest offering has been formulated to work for everyone by adapting to your needs. In Clinique’s own words:

Our smart serum understands the particular needs of your skin, providing custom repair for the damage you see and the damage you don’t. For all ages, all ethnicities.

I have been testing this serum for the last couple of weeks, having received a decent sized sample of it. So, should you run out and buy this or save your pennies for something else?

clinique smart serum

Clinique indicates the serum should be applied twice a day, so that is what I did tried to do. The morning after I first applied this instead of my normal facial oil, I woke up with a completely dehydrated face. I love testing new products for my lovely readers, but this clearly wasn’t working for me at all. So, I opted to apply this once a day as a morning serum instead.

The serum is fragrance free and allergy tested, but unfortunately my skin turns red after application of the serum. I sometimes have this reaction to retinol but tried to find the list of ingredients to see if I could narrow it down. As I have a tester, the packaging doesn’t contain a list of ingredients so I turned to the website, to find the (active) ingredients aren’t mentioned anywhere! I find that extremely poor from an internationally renowned brand like Clinique.

I did run into a second gripe on the site however, as I was also curious as to how this magic serum would be able to adapt to the particular concerns of your skin. Despite a short animation, the process is still wholly unclear to me.

Back to the product: despite the slight redness I did continue to test as it was not accompanied by any burning or itching. The serum isn’t moisturising enough for my dry skin, so did very little to adress fine lines caused by dehydration. I also didn’t really see any improvement in the overall condition of my skin or a evening out of my skin tone.

This serum retails for a whopping $60/€67 for 30 ml. Given the lack of results, I would avoid this serum. If you are looking for something like this, there are two options. Try the Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair, which is a similar price but did provide great results or invest in a nice (organic) facial oil.


Op zoek naar een nieuw serum? Clinique’s nieuwste product is zo gemaakt dat het voor iedereen moet werken door zich aan jouw wensen aan te passen. In de woorden van Clinique:

Een serum dat slim genoeg is om het verleden van je huid te begrijpen en haar toekomst te veranderen.Speciaal ontwikkeld voor één, unieke huid. De jouwe.

Ik heb dit serum de laatste tijd getest, aangezien ik een luxe tester had ontvangen. Snel naar de winkel om dit product aan te schaffen of je centjes bewaren voor iets anders?

clinique smart serum

Clinique geeft aan dat je dit serum twee keer per dag moet gebruiken, dus dat is wat ik deed probeerde te doen. De morgen nadat ik dit serum voor het eerst ‘s avonds had gebruikt in plaats van mijn gebruikelijke gezichtsolie, werd ik wakker met een compleet uitgedroogd gezicht. Ik vind het altijd leuk om nieuwe producten te testen voor mijn lieve lezers, maar dit werkte dus duidelijk niet voor mij. Daarom heb ik het serum enkel ‘s ochtends gebruikt.

Het serum is parfum-vrij en getest op allergien, maar helaas werd mijn huid rood na het gebruiken van het serum. Ik heb die reactie soms op retinol dus ik ging op zoek naar de lijst met ingredienten om een kijkje te nemen. Deze lijst staat natuurlijk niet op mijn kleine tester, dus ik keek op de site maar kon de (actieve) ingredienten nergens vinden! Ik vind dat toch wel tegenvallen van een internationaal merk als Clinique.

Ik liep meteen tegen een tweede probleem aan op de site, want ik was erg nieuwsgierig naar hoe dit magische serum zich dan precies zou moeten aanpassen aan mijn huidproblemen. Ondanks een kort animatie-filmpje, is dit proces mij nog steeds compleet onduidelijk.

Terug naar het serum: ondanks de roodheid ben ik het product wel blijven gebruiken omdat er verder geen sprake was van een branderig of jeukend gevoel. Het serum is echt niet hydraterend genoeg voor mijn droge huid en deed dus helemaal niks tegen fijne lijntjes (veroorzaakt door dehydratatie). Ik zag verder ook geen verbetering van de algemene conditie van mijn huid of een vermindering van vlekjes en verkleuringen.

Dit serum kost je in de parfumerie €67 voor 30 ml. Zeker geen aanrader vanwege het gebrek aan resultaat. Als je iets vergelijkbaars zoekt zijn er twee opties. De Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair kost ongeveer hetzelfde en geeft wel resultaat. Of kies voor een fijne (natuurlijke) gezichtsolie.

Hydrating Hero: Hydraluron

Sometimes you come across products that don’t look very attractive. Hydraluron Moisture Booster by Indeed Laboratories is definitely one of those: fluorescent pink packaging containing a (thankfully) more subdued little tube with a clear gel. Not something I would gravitate towards on my own…but what a product!


This serum promises to increase the hydration in your skin through the use of hyaluronic acid. Apply a small amount  before your normal moisturizer in areas that feel dehydrated. Even if you have normal skin, parts of your face may become dehydrated due to a bad diet (like a Christmas extravaganza), alcohol, smoking etc. Hydraluron makes any product you use over it much more effective and over time allows your skin to retain more moisture. This product comes with a mid-range price of about £24.99 /$24.99/€29.95  for 30 ml but that will last you quite a long time as you only need a little. A great product to combat dehydrated skin, during emergencies or more regularly in winter.

Sommige producten zijn niet meteen aantrekkelijk. Hydraluyron Moisture Booster van Indeed Laboratories is er daar een van: een felroze verpakking met een (gelukkig) wat minder heftig tubetje vol met een doorzichtige gel. Niet echt iets wat je als impulsaankoop meeneemt terwijl je aan het winkelen bent…maar wat een product!


Dit serum belooft het vochtgehalte in je huid te verhogen door gebruik van hyaluronic acid. Breng een klein beetje van dit product aan op plekken die erg droog aanvoelen voordat je je gewone crème aanbrengt. Zelfs mensen met een normale huid hebben soms last van droge plekjes, als gevolg van een slecht eetpatroon (na de Kerst bijvoorbeeld), alcohol, roken etc. Hydraluron zorgt ervoor dat elk product dat je erna gebruikt veel effectiever word en zorgt er na verloop van tijd voor dat je huid meer vocht op kan nemen. Dit product kost ongeveer €29,95 voor 30 ml maar je doet er wel lang mee omdat je maar een klein beetje nodig hebt. Een geweldig product om droge plekjes te bestrijden, tijdens noodgevallen of meer regelmatig in de winter.