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WhiteWitch Skincare -Red Clay Face Mask

WhiteWitch Skincare -Red Clay Face Mask

So Its been a while since I tried new products and I am finally writing a review on a new brand I discovered.

WhiteWitch Skincare are an Organic and Ethical Skincare brand and an Irish company.

This is what the company says about themselves.

“We are the most ethical skincare company that exists today. We are nature lovers, doctors and artists. We make all our products using wild flowers, plants, oats and seaweed from the unspoiled coast and meadows, in front of the Atlantic ocean.
We go to great lengths to avoid the use of plastic in our packaging as we believe nature should not have to pay the price for human beauty. Our product purity and safety relies on remaining BPA free, avoiding contamination of its organic element until the end. White Witch® also ensures all products are 100% vegan and cruelty free as no animal products or by-products are used in manufacturing.

From beginning to end we handle the process ourselves. We speak to the growers, the suppliers and the local people to find the best quality ingredients harvested in the most ethical way. White Witch® is registered by The Vegan Society.”

When I saw an ad for their products I was really excited to find a company that uses no plastic whatsoever in their packaging without compromising its design. The Face mask they sent me was packaged in a cardboard box, on the inside was a cute little cotton bag that then contained the little glas jar that was sealed with a cork top.

I absolutely loved the look of it.

So I couldnt wait to try it.

So far I have used it three times.

The instructions say to mix the powder with a little water and apply evenly on your face. Then let it dry for about 15 and 20 minutes.

The first time I applied it I was in a rush, (never rush skincare guys) so I washed it off before it dried completely.

My skin felt cleaner and refreshed but I had to use it a few times right.

The next time then I did let it dry for the full 20 minutes and like with all clay masks I had to sit very still and use my facial muscles as little as possible as it starts to flake a lot. It also get very very tight and a bit itchy the drier it gets. So when I finally got to the 20 minute mark I was glad I could wash it off. 

Well it took a while. But again I think that very normal with clay masks, they are just very tough to get off.

Anyway when I did get it off, my skin was very irritated and red, but also looked really clean.

I hadn’t checked the instructions on their website and put on moisturiser straight away, which you are not supposed to do. You are supposed to “Give the skins’ own sebum glands a chance to ‘reactivate’, thereby moisturising from the inside out”. 

But my skin felt so tight I really couldnt resist, maybe because I didnt know I had to try to resist.

So thats what I did the third time. I didnt moisturise and it was very hard but after a while my skin felt normal again I did get that clean and fresh feeling like the first two times.

With regards to the longlivety of my fresh clean skin, I cant say much yet. The clean feeling hasnt lasted very long but I have very difficult skin and my pores just get clogged up so quickly.

I think Ill have to use the mask a few more times to come back with a more accurate verdict.

I will post an update once I have. If you had a different experience, please comment here or let me know on Instagram.

I will also definitely try some of the other WhiteWitch Skincare in future because I love their concept, the fact that they are organic, crueltyfree, plastic free and vegan.

 

 

 

Chocolate Orange Cheesecake and Lemon Turmeric Cheesecake

Chocolate Orange Cheesecake and Lemon Turmeric Cheesecake

Want a cheesecake with a superfood in it? well youre in luck as I have created two very yummy cheesecakes and both feature a superfood. Whats not to like right.

 So are you an orange or a lemon fan? Or do you like both. Me for one I think I prefer lemon, although the orange one is pretty good too. So you can try both like I did and please let me know if you do. Id love to hear your opinion.

Scroll down for both recipes

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Chocolate Orange Cheesecake
Course Dessert
Servings
slices
Ingredients
Course Dessert
Servings
slices
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. To make the crust, place the flour sugar, butter and cacao in a big bowl and knead by hand until combined. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  2. Press the pastry into a tart base and bake in a preheated oven at 180 degrees celcius for about 20 minutes.
  3. Now place the rest of the ingredients into a food processor and blend until very creamy, scraping down the sides if needed. Depending on your processor this might take five to six blends.
  4. When the base is cooled down, pour the cheesecake mix and refrigerate until set. If you want to decorate with chocolate orange sandwich biscuits reserve some of the pastry and cut out biscuits. Bake for a bit shorter than the base. Also reserve some of the cheesecake mix and spread on half of the biscuits. Then sandwich them together.
  5. Enjoy
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Print Recipe
Lemon Turmeric Cheesecake
Servings
slices
Ingredients
Servings
slices
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. To make the crust, place the flour sugar, butter and vanilla essence in a big bowl and knead by hand until combined. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  2. Press the pastry into a tart base and bake in a preheated oven at 180 degrees celcius for about 20 minutes.
  3. Now place the rest of the ingredients into a food processor and blend until very creamy, scraping down the sides if needed. Depending on your processor this might take five to six blends.
  4. When the base is cooled down, pour the cheesecake mix and refrigerate until set. If you want to decorate with lemon sandwich biscuits reserve some of the pastry and cut out biscuits. Bake for a bit shorter than the base. Also reserve some of the cheesecake mix and spread on half of the biscuits. Then sandwich them together.
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Sweet Potato Burger with Cranberry Sauce and Minty Peas

Sweet Potato Burger with Cranberry Sauce and Minty Peas

 

 

I can’t believe how lazy I’ve been making dinners lately. Maybe it’s to do with the fact that I always have to make a non-vegan dinner for my other half and a vegan dinner for myself. But anyway apart from making all sorts of treats I’ve been surviving on nuts and dates in the evenings lately.
Not that there’s anything wrong with nuts and dates but I really want a nice dinner tonight and I might as well have a burger.

A burger you say? Not very healthy is it. Oh well this one is…

I have actually made this burger when I was trying to come up with fancy starter ideas for our Christmas Dinner this year. I was experimenting with sweet potato fritters and came up with this beautiful patty that I then just used as a burger patty and actually as my starter served with spinach and roasted pine nuts. 

But back to the burger. I always loved sweet potatoes and while I often have them as chips I thought the idea of having them in a burger instead of as a side was great.
Adding spinach and bell pepper gave them that bit of bite and additional nutrients and serving them with minty peas also added protein.

There is no nasties in this burger except the bun if you consider wheat a nasty but that’s a different topic for a different day.
Overall I just love the way this burger came together with the sweet potato patties the peas and of course that Christmassy cranberry sauce. Obviously you can have cranberry sauce any day but it always reminds me of Christmas. The burger was juicy and tangy and also sweet and made the perfect comfort food dinner or lunch that day.

Thinking back to that and my nut and date dinners I think Ill just make that for myself tonight and start reading that book that I bought over a month ago and haven’t had a chance to read because I am still fighting with that cold which I think is actually a sinus infection as it gives me awful facial pain. Maybe I should just roll up on the couch under my blankie and have a good rest and read that book.

Anyway enough moaning. Here’s the recipe

Sweet Potato Burger with Cranberry Sauce and Minty Peas
Ingredients
  1. 2 smallish sweet potatoes
  2. 1 tbsp plain flour
  3. 1 tbsp corn flour
  4. 1/2 bell pepper
  5. one handful coriander leaves
  6. salt and pepper
  7. oil for frying
  8. 1 cup frozen peas
  9. 1 tbsp mint leaves
  10. 2 tsp vegan butter
  11. 2 burger buns
  12. one handful spinach leaves
  13. 1 red onion
  14. Cranberry sauce
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Instructions
  1. Grate the sweet potatoes on a coarse grater and chop the bell pepper as finely as you can.
  2. Squeeze out most of the juices from the sweet potatoes but leave a bit of moisture in.
  3. Chop the coriander leaves.
  4. Combine the pepper sweet potatoes and coriander in a bowl.
  5. Now add the flour and corn flour, salt and pepper and mix everything until evenly combined and a bit sticky.
  6. Divide the mixture into four and form four flat patties.
  7. Fry in a shallow pan until cooked through in the middle and crispy on the outside.
  8. In the meantime chop the mint leaves and combine them with the peas and butter and heat in a small saucepan until the butter has melted and the peas are hot throughout. Do not cook
  9. Assemble all by starting with the bottom of the bun then the spinach then one burger patty and red onion on top followed by some cranberry sauce and another patty.
  10. Finish off with dripping pea sauce and the top of the bun
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http://the-vegantwins-plantry.com/
Valentines Day – Just my humble opinion

Valentines Day – Just my humble opinion

Just my humble opinion…
So today is Valentine’s Day and I am not sure how I feel about that. I see all these beautify photos on Instagram of heart-shaped dishes from cookies to pancakes to full sized cakes and so many many other lovely treats. To be honest I love the look of all of them and the creativity and thought behind them.
And I just love the colour pink so anything pink I see (or maybe most pink things) I love.

When you go out to the shops today you see all these men rushing around buying roses and chocolates. And I can’t help but thinking isn’t this all a bit silly?

Is it because we never do anything like that (my other half and me), I don’t get flowers or chocolates and we don’t go out for a romantic dinners on Valentine’s Day.
But honestly who does?

I think if I came home with some pink cake or chocolates I’d be getting very highly raised eyebrows.

I remember the only time I got a present (roses a big teddy and chocolates) on Valentine’s Day was the very first year I was going out with my significant other, and I think the pressure of it all got to him.

Breakfast Bowl

On the other hand, my little James came home yesterday with a handmade Valentines Card for his dad, brother and mum and I thought that was so cute. They made them in school yesterday and now it’s on my kitchen press.

The girls in the office had the idea of making our own cards this year, too. And so we did.

But is anybody really taking today seriously. Are there people out there who would spend a fortune going out for dinner and buying expensive presents? I am sure there are, otherwise restaurants wouldn’t be fully booked tonight and the guys would be running around buying all that stuff.

Anyway Ill be off to Instagram now looking at all the pink heart shaped food and maybe next year, if I don’t forget Ill create something myself and post the recipe her. Until then you have my delicious pink breakfast bowl to look at which I made today and it coincided with the pinkest day of the year. HAHA

Pink Valentines Breakfast
Hazelnut Pumpkin Seeds Date Bar

Hazelnut Pumpkin Seeds Date Bar

 

Who doesn’t love breakfast bars, right?

They’re small and handy and if you have no time for breakfast in the morning just throw one in your bag and have it with your coffee or tea on the way to work, school, anywhere really. But are they good for you? With the huge amount of different bars on the market its hard to chose the right bar. They are all being marketed as really good for you with loads of fruit and nuts and cereal. But have you checked the ingredients list? First of all its usually a really long list and then one of the first ingredients listed is usually sugar.
 
SO they are full of sugar. Most of them anyway.
And while I have also been guilty of buying them because they are so nice with your morning caffeine fix I think there is a better solution and it doesn’t involve much work!
 
WIN WIN right?
 
So let me introduce you to the three ingredient breakfast bar. Or elevenses bar or anytime you want a snack bar really.
I try to make loads of them and keep them handy to bring to work or feed my kiddies with their plant milk when they’re that bit peckish.
 
I hope you’ll like them as much as I do.
Print Recipe
Hazelnut, Pumpkin seed & Date Breakfast Bars
Delicious healthy nutty bars, ideal for elevensies
Servings
bars
Ingredients
Servings
bars
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Chop all the ingredients with a sharp knive until they are very small. I usually do this because I like my bars chunky. You can also throw them into a food processor and process until you get a sticky mass that can be rolled out. If it is too crumbly add a drop of water. Really only a drop until all the ingredients come together.
  2. Roll out into a square about 1cm high, obviously you can make thicker bars but then you will have less bars.
  3. Cut into bars
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Liz Earle – Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser

Liz Earle – Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser

 
First product review….had to be on cosmetics. Us being girls it’s only natural.
 
Going vegan for the animals for us meant also going crueltyfree. So we had to ditch all our cruel cosmetics. But you have to do research first, right? Nope. I didn’t. Off I went to the first pharmacy and grabbed the first product that looked lovely…turned it over and saw the bunny. Winner!!!! This is the Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser by  Liz Earle. I was promised clear skin by the sales person and off I went to try it at home….Really optimistic with this one now.
 
Just a brief introduction to my skin
 
I am not sure why but for some time now my skin has been very clogged up with spots appearing on my forehead and chin. I tried  a few face washes and exfoliators but couldn’t get it to feel clean or even less greasy. So the reason I am trying this is that I really want my skin to clear up and get rid of those spots.
 
The sales rep told me the cleanser is really good for acne prone skin so exactly what I am looking for, right?
 
First of all a tiny bit about the company.

Liz Earle was founded in 1995 and is a British beauty brand. They offer skincare, haircare, bodycare and make up for all ages, stages in life or skin type.* According to their Sales Rep most of their products are Vegan except a few that include honey and beeswax from sustainable sources. Sooo, if I really like this cleanser I might move on to their other products and will of course review them here.

The Hot Cloth Cleanser

According to the official Liz Earle website this cleanser is suitable for all skin types. This statement makes me a bit nervous and sceptical as surely there cannot be a one for all solution for all skin types. But lets see how it goes. The cleanser has won numerous awards over the last few years including “InStyle Best Beauty Buys 2016 Award”, the “Woman&Home Best in Beauty 2015 Award” The Glamour Beauty Power List 2014 Award” and many others.

I got a 30ml tub that came with the cleansing muslin cloth. At €8 for the both it’s a reasonable enough price and worth a try.

How to use?

Massage onto dry skin over your face and neck, finishing over your eye area. Rinse the pure cotton cloth in hand-hot water and wring out before gently polishing off the cream. Finish by splashing your face with cool water.*

I was also told by the salesperson that I can even remove my eye make up with it as it doesn’t sting the eyes.

First Impressions

When I opened the tub I got a soft and gentle Eucalyptus scent which was rather nice as it wasn’t overpowering. The consistency of the cream itself was smooth and not greasy.

So first I removed my eye make up which was easy enough and didn’t take that much product to do (not sure if I want to do that though considering there are other make up removers specifically designed for that purpose).

Then I went on to massage the product into my skin with circular motion. I rinsed my new cloth in hot water and polished off the cream.

Result. Very surprised. My skin felt very clean after the first use and it hasn’t felt like that before in a long time.

I was really optimistic and thought this is it, I might have found my favourite cleanser and if my skin feels like that every day and gets rid of my impurities Ill stick with it.

The following morning my skin was back to normal all greasy and my pores were blocked. So I cleansed it again. You are supposed to use it twice a day morning and night. Again my skin felt and looked really clean. I was so happy.

I have now used up the entire tube of 30ml which took me about 4 weeks and here comes the final verdict.

First of all one week into using the product I found out it wasn’t vegan. It contains bees wax. I got a bit upset as even though I was told not all Liz Earle products are vegan it wasn’t mentioned by the sales lady that this wasn’t. So regardless of my experience with it I will not be repurchasing it.

Now having used up the entire tub I am not entirely satisfied.

The Positives:

  • My skin felt and looked really clean after each use.
  • The product has a lovely scent and a creamy consistency which is easy to apply.
  • It doesn’t dry out your skin which a lot of cleansers do
  • The muslin cloth is lovely and soft and easy to wash after each use.
  • 30ml lasting four weeks with daily application in the morning and evening quite good

The negatives:

  • The Product is not Vegan
  • Even though my skin looks and feels really clean after each cleanse my spots didn’t disappear and my pores are still blocked. My skin keeps getting oily throughout the day and I have lots of impurities.

So having promised to clear up my skin it didn’t deliver.

But maybe this product is not suitable for all skin types after all. Maybe if your skin isn’t too oily or clogged up you will like it. As I said after every cleanse I was really impressed on how clean my skin felt and looked. And every time I thought maybe I need to use it for a bit longer to see a lasting result. But after having used it for four weeks I am a bit disappointed.

This is not to say that you wont like it. And if you are ok with having bees wax in your products give it a go.

My search for the best cleanser for me still continues and I am moving on to the next product.