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Skincare Goals for 2023

I know we’re now towards the end of January but it’s never too late to review the previous year and set some skincare goals for 2023.

My own list of goals is in the processing of being developed -actually, I think goals are an ever evolving things and not just set once a year. I set goals for everything; from business goals being formulated, through to lifestyle choices, those real “I want” purchases or experiences and even down to how I want to conduct my relationships for the coming year and what I want to get out of them versus what I give. But like most of us, sometimes I need a bit of inspo too so I thought I’d share my skincare goals for 2023 that I thought you’d find helpful too….

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The Beauty of a Simple Skincare Routine

How many steps should your average skincare routine contain? Four? Five? Ten?! Unfortunately, our skincare routines are often overused, overcomplicated and over the top for many (not to mention time consuming!). Thankfully,  it really can be a case of more doesn’t always mean better results! Sometimes beautiful skin can be easily achieved by a stripped back, simple skincare routine. It can be really hard to know what we actually need to be applying to our faces and what we can really do without.  At Barker & Sloane, I always emphasise that having a skincare routine doesn’t need to be time sapping and more complicated than a bio-chemistry degree. The good news is you won’t ever hear me recommending spending your evenings at the bathroom sink, less really is more.  Here are my secrets to achieving a  simple and effective three step skincare routine perfect for your outdoor lifestyle. Thank me later! 

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3 Transitional Skincare Tips to Welcome The New Season

Suddenly it appears to be that we have woken up in October AND are already knocking on the door of November 2022! If you’re anything like me, this year has felt like a rollercoaster ride to nowhere at times and the thought of preparing for autumn / winter after the intense summer heatwaves we’ve had feels a little jarring. Nevertheless, it’s that time of year where the nights draw in a little closer, the temperatures start to drop, and thoughts turn to layering, winter coats and a little more moisturiser (more on that later).  Switching up your skincare routine to include some more nourishing ingredients can go a long way to helping your skin transition into the new season especially when our outdoor lifestyles show no sign of slowing down.  Here are my top three tips for glowing, happy skin right through until the new year. 


3 reasons to include Raspberry Seed Oil in your routine.

If it’s one thing I absolutely love about this time of year it’s the berries. Blackberries and raspberries come out in droves and there’s nothing quite like foraging in the hedgerows for those little bursts of flavour, am I right?! 

Whilst you might expect a delicious spread of raspberry jam on your toast first thing, you might not quite expect it in your morning skincare routine! That is of course until now…

Introducing, the unsung skincare-super-hero that is Raspberry Seed Oil. It’s the natural by-product of cold pressed raspberry seeds and we’ve given it pride of place in our Daily Defender formulation for good reason! Here are 3 reasons why we love it; 

1. It hydrates. 

If you’ve heard me say it once, I’ve said it a thousand times- hydration is so important ESPECIALLY for those of us who are passionate about pursuing an active, outdoor lifestyle. Aside from drinking enough water, including Raspberry Seed Oil in your routine can help to boost moisture levels within your skin. Studies have shown that Raspberry Seed Oil contains high levels of phytosterols which reduce trans epidermal water loss (the amount of water passing through your skin). Healthy, hydrated skin looks plumped and rejuvenated, something I know we could all use a little help with after a dry summer out in the fields. 

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Consider this your SPF reminder

Here’s a secret. One of my most frequently asked questions is what is the best anti-ageing product I can buy for my skin?! My answer? Spoiler alert: it’s not actually an anti-ageing product at all – it’s SPF! Sunscreen is an absolute essential for your routine if you’re planning on reducing the impact that the sun’s harmful rays can have on your appearance. 

How does it cause damage?

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Meet Your Holiday Travel Essentials

Beach days, heatwaves and flights are FINALLY here and at Barker & Sloane we know that the secret to fuss-free travel is simpler than you might think.

The only bad thing about getting away on holiday at the moment? Knowing what to pack, are we right? We know you like to enjoy the finer things in life but struggling to fit them in your luggage only to then face huge fees for overweight baggage after standing in a queue around the block is a complete holiday buzzkill! 

Imagine if we told you there was a way to look after your skin on holiday without all this added stress?! Wouldn’t it be incredible if there was an edited version of all your Barker & Sloane favourites that would fit in your hand luggage? 

Well, consider your prayers answered.

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3 Simple Steps to Heatwave-Proof your Skin

There’s nothing better than embracing everything the outdoors and a rural way of life has to offer but let’s face it, sometimes a UK heatwave can leave a serious mark on our skin (pun absolutely intended). With soaring temperatures, blistering sun and a distinct lack of available shade your skin can take a beating during the summer months when you thrive outside. 

You need a targeted, simple collection of skincare products that work as hard as you do to protect, nourish and repair when it’s time to roll out of bed or hang up the boots at the end of a long day. Luckily at Barker & Sloane we have just the fuss-free solution…


Skincare Goals for 2022

It may seem like a long time ago when we saw the New Year in with possibly a few too many bubbles but at least the hangovers will have definitely gone by now! Believe it or not we’re still only in the 2nd week of January so it’s not too late to review the previous year and set some skincare goals for 2022.

My own list of goals is in the processing of being developed; there’s everything from business goals being formulated, through to lifestyle choices, those real “I want” purchases or experiences and even down to how I want to conduct my relationships for the coming year and what I want to get out of them versus what I give. But like most of us, sometimes I need a bit of inspo too so I thought I’d share my skincare goals for 2022 that I thought you’d find helpful too….

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Do I need a Cleansing Balm?

Before I answer that, let me ask you a question back. Do you worry about your skin? Most of us do, be it anything from ageing through to the daily fight with blemishes. The truth is that to fix these you have to go back to basics. And that means, cleansing your skin every day & night.

Velvet melt cleansing balm in glass jar

Did you just roll your eyes then?! I know, I feel your pain – because we are ultimately a lazy species often doing the minimum required and yet still expecting amazing results. If you’re anything like me, going to bed with make up from the day is a regular occurrence! The only way to change a bad habit is to replace it with something amazing. Just like our cleansing balm that’s a luxurious experience and makes you feel like you’ve just spent £100’s at the spa.

Let’s face it our skin has a lot to deal with every single day: be it the pollution from our trips into the city, mud and dirt from spending time out in the field, through to when we cover our skin in a layer of make-up or the sweat and grime from time spent in the gym. And if that wasn’t enough, did you know that we excrete toxins through our skin? That’s why that heavy night out at the weekend shows up on your skin a few days later! Even if you’re sat there thinking – no none of that applies to me. Just think of every time you’ve touched your face and where your hands were before that…..

Good conditioned skin is clean skin. Clean skin rejuvenates and repairs itself and allows topical products such as serums and moisturisers to work that much better. As I have already said, in a perfect world you should clean your skin every morning and night.

What is a Cleansing Balm?

Our Velvet Melt Cleansing Balm is a decadent buttery rich formula that will melt onto your skin. It is oil and emollient based and since oil clings to dirt, it is amazing at removing all impurities from your skin without striping the natural oils.

I’ve heard about double cleansing, what is it?

Double cleansing is a popular technique recommend by dermatologists. Simply put it’s cleansing your face twice, often with two different products. Derms suggest your first cleanse should be with an oil based cleanser to dissolve excess oils, remove makeup and sunscreen. And then your second cleanse should be with a water based product to wash away the remaining dirt and any residue from the oil cleanse stage.

But that’s where our cleansing balm is a magical 2-in-1. We call it balm-to-milk. The first step is that luxurious melting balm that turns into an oil for your first stage. The second step, happens when you add water and turn it into a milky emulsion that you wash away. So not only are you saving time but by using a balm-to milk cleanser you’re also ONLY needing ONE product that does both.

What makes the Velvet Melt Cleansing Balm blue?

We use English Yarrow essential oil which is beautiful ink blue colour in its natural state. Yarrow grows on grass verges and wild meadows around the UK. When it is distilled to extract the essential oil, one of its natural chemical compounds is chamazulene which gives its its beautiful blue colour. We only use a small amount of yarrow (as we have strict dermal percentages to adhere to) so it loses some of its deep navy colour and ends up a beautiful light blue hue. Also, at this level there is no fear of looking like a smurf either! One final note on the colour, because we make small batches and only use natural ingredients, each batch may be slightly different in colour and shade of blue.

Yarrow is known for its calming properties on the skin, it has anti-inflammatory and is good for soothing irritated skin.

Our Cleansing balm is a magical 2-in-1. The velvety balm melts onto the skin and turns into an oil to lift all dirt off the skin. Add water and it turns into a milky emulsion that easy to wash away and leave skin feeling beautiful.

Do you have to use a toner?

No, toning is not necessary for skin health. Toners were originally developed to make skin feel soft again. They replaced lost moisture after harsh skin cleansers many years ago. These days, most cleansers are very mild. That said, if you like to use a toner after cleansing, we’d recommend using our 12 bore boost mist which would act as an amazing toner.

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The 12 Bore Boost Mist would be a perfect toner adding a hydration boost to the skin after cleansing.

Can I use any cloth?

Yes of course! Just as long as it’s a gentle cloth and not harsh or scratchy on the skin. Our own muslin cloths are super soft and are made from organic cotton & bamboo. You could use a soft flannel if you’d prefer. Regardless of what you decide to use, we recommend washing your cloth regularly at a min temp of 40°C to clean any bacteria. But probably the most important point is to DRY your cloth out in-between each use to avoid creating a breeding ground for unfriendly bacteria and microbial nasties.

We also don’t recommend using disposable wipes as these only end up in landfill. Worse still are the so called “flushable” ones that actually block drains. Many also have plastic in them so they don’t biodegrade and actually put micro-plastic into our water system.

Is your cleansing balm good for sensitive or oily skin? What about mature skin?

Yes, we’ve formulated our Velvet Melt Cleansing Balm to be really gentle on the skin. Everyone has different types of skin so whilst we say it’s good for sensitive skin, you should patch test first if you are worried about it. We’ve added ingredients like calendula, apricot butter, bisabolol and Blue Yarrow to help soothe irritations and calm skin.

For oily skin, a cleansing balm is actually a good choice as it gently removes excess oil without stripping your natural oils. The milky emulsifier stage will help leave a beautiful nourished clean sensation on the skin that doesn’t leave it feeling like its covered in an oily film. The added vitamin E helps to balance sebum production.

For mature or ageing skin, we’ve formulated with British Crambe and Camelina oils to help give skin a radiant appearance and to boost elasticity. Hyperpigmentation is a common complaint as it can give your skin an aged look, even without the added wrinkles so we’ve added some castor oil to help keep this at bay. If you already have a hyperpigmentation or melasma problem, that often requires specialist products that are prescribed by a dermatologist or doctor.

We love using active ingredients such as Bisabolol (which is a powerful plant active from chamomile) as not only is is amazingly soothing on the skin but it also stimulates collagen production and inhibits the melanin production that’s responsible for age spots.

open glass jar of cleanser

Key ingredients:

  • High in Omega 6,  Apricot butter* is anti-inflammatory and softens skin
  • Calendula* infused Sunflower oil* is known for its gentleness to calm irritation and reduce the signs of fine lines.
  • Crambe Seed* oil & Camelina* oil are both excellent are pore cleansing and reduces pores. They also help brighten skin & improve elasticity.
  • Vitamin E is an anti-oxidant and helps balance sebum production
  • Castor Oil – excellent at combating hyperpigmentation and lifting impurities from the skin.
  • Bisabolol – Calms redness. Stimulates collagen production and inhibits melanin production that’s responsible for age spots.

* English Oils

So back to the original question – Do I need a cleansing balm? Well what do you think? Get yours below….

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What’s the difference between Dry or Dehydrated skin?

What’s the difference between dry or dehydrated skin? We all know that water = hydration right? But if this is the case, why isn’t everyone walking around with glowing, plumped-up skin? Because when it comes to skincare it is slightly more complicated than that… 

Usually dry, dehydrated, hydrated and moisturised are terms that are frequently used interchangeably but they are vastly different from each other. It IS confusing, I will give you that, but understanding these subtle differences could very well set you on your way to replenish your skin to its former glory. 

Let’s start with the basic rundown.