Total Pageviews

Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat | Pillow Talk

Friday, 7 August 2015

After seeing a few posts recently featuring this beautiful lip pencil come lipstick I decided to treat myself and let me tell you it's worth every penny.

Charlotte Tilbury's Lip Cheat lip pencils are said to be her secret weapon to fuller lips. The pencil glides effortlessly over your lips, doesn't bleed or feather and although I have been using it all over my lips it doesn't fade or dry my lips out.

Pillow talk is the most gorgeous shade for any occasion, it's like a slightly more rose beige version of my natural lips. I can get a good few hours of wear before I feel the need to reapply. 

Everything from the packaging to the product itself screams luxury and quality. I can't wait to expand my Charlotte Tilbury collection.

Origins Out Of Trouble Mask Pods

Thursday, 6 August 2015

Out Of Trouble Mask Pods £5

Origins is a brand I see often featured in blog posts and reviews but I have never tried anything from them, seeing their face masks as a popular purchase I decided to start my journey with Origins with their Out Of Trouble face mask. 

Out Of Trouble is aimed at skin just like mine, oily, prone to blocked pores and breakouts, helping to absorb excess oiled slough off debris from pores. I decided to purchase their pack of four pods rather than fork out £23 for the full size product and not like it, at only £1.25 per treatment it's not only effective but incredibly affordable.

The mask is incredibly thick and luxurious feeling, it has a creamy yet almost mousse like texture to it which smooths over skin well and despite being thick doesn't dry uncomfortably like a regular clay mask. The product has an invigorating scent to it, you can almost smell how good it is for your skin!

After use my skin felt extremely clean and almost tingly, my current breakout felt more comfortable and a couple of smaller spots shrunk away overnight. I will certainly go on to buy the 100ml tube, I can see this as a regular treatment to keep my skin in check.

Clinique Pop Lip Colour | Nude Pop

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

I'm always one for a good nude lip, something you can incorporate into any look and apply with ease on the go. Clinique's Nude Pop is the prettiest and easiest to wear nude shade, an almost sheer pink toned nude with a slight pearlescent finish.

As this shade is slightly more sheer than the other two (Beige Pop and Melon Pop) that I own I do find I need to top up a little more often but this isn't a problem as the shade wears well and doesn't leave that obvious line of colour around lips.

Excuse the facial fuzz but how pretty is this colour?! Paired with the Clinique Nude Pop Cheek Pop this shade has been my favourite daytime lip since I picked it up.

Do you own any of Clinique's Lip Pop lipsticks, which are your favourites? 

Trial-Sized Tuesday | R+Co Moon Shine Shampoo and Conditioner

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Last week I purchased some drawer organisers in a variety of sizes to help me tackle the dumping ground that is my dressing table drawers and I now finally have an organised sample drawer! These samples from R+Co instantly caught my attention, just look at the design, it's magical!

Moon Shine shampoo and conditioner is aimed at dull hair, giving it more sheen, contrast and dimension. The products contain Hibiscus extract which protects hair whilst conditioning and softening, Morninga-seed to protect against free radicals, Rhubarb to moisturise, Damson Plum to protect from discolouration plus rice extract which smoothes hair and retains moisture. Both the shampoo and conditioner smell amazing and I could still smell it in my hair a couple of days later, which is something you don't often get from hair products.

I love the squeaky clean feeling these products gave my hair and as promised it was left smooth and shiny, I don't quite know if I could stump up £22 for the shampoo and a further £22 for the conditioner, maybe a payday treat next month...

July Empties

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Um where the hell did July go? Seeing July through is always an exciting one for me as birthday is at the beginning of August which mostly means new makeup! Last months empties were mostly the everyday essentials, how often do us beauty junkies actually finish a makeup product?!

Lets begin with a new favourite, Kèrastase Cristalliste Lait Luminous Perfecting Conditioner. This was actually a decent sized sample from My Little Box, I hadn't really heard of this conditioner before so it sat in my bathroom for a while but once I had tried it and saw what it did to my hair I was hooked! This conditioner is designed to be used on the mid lengths and ends of long hair, it helps detangle and leave your hair feeling light yet nourished. I have gone on to purchase the full size product as my hair can't be without it now!

Nivea In Shower Moisturiser is a product that I really love the concept of more than the product itself. I initially bought this moisturiser in the winter to save me having to stand cold and wet in the bathroom applying moisturiser after my shower, it didn't provide enough moisture for my dry skin at that point so I thought I'd put it aside for the warmer weather, alas even though I wear lighter moisturising lotions at this time of the year it still does not provide any decent level of moisture to my skin. This is one I shan't be repurchasing.

Aussie Miracle Shine Shampoo has been my go-to shampoo for the last few years, it leaves my hair glossy and smelling great. I use a couple of different conditioners throughout the week but my hair washing routine will always start with this product and I always have a couple of spare bottle in my bathroom cabinet.

Unfortunately Maybelline Baby Lips  are another product that I love the idea of more than the product. Sure they're affordable and they come in a wide variety of shades and designs but they just don't moisturise my lips! Lip balm is one of those products I rarely like to skimp on as you can really notice the difference to the moisture levels in your lips and you then have to spend a week getting rid of flakiness and rehydrate them. This is another product I won't be repurchasing. 

From a bad lip balm to a great one with Clarins HydraQuench Moisture Replenishing Lip Balm. This is only a tiny 3ml sample but you need so little of the product it lasted and lasted, I applied before bed and my lips were always soft and smooth by morning meaning I need not worry about prepping for any type of lipstick, even matte shades. This is one i will be purchasing in the near future.

Soap and Glory Scrub Of Your Life was from a Christmas gift set, I have a regular favourite body exfoliator but I thought I'd give this a shot. I haven't used a Soap and Glory exfoliator in a couple of years, I used to love Breakfast scrub, not only did it smell divine but it did an amazing job of leaving your skin glowing, unfortunately Scrub of Your Life doesn't compare, it's more like a shower gel with a few exfoliating beads in it. 

I'm on about my third of fourth jar of Benefit's It's Potent eye cream, I love everything from the cute packaging down to the sparkle it gives back to my eye area. This will be a regular repurchase.

Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream is a product I've heard so many people rave about, I've been using it for a couple of months and have to admit can't really see any visible improvement to my skin. I dispensed the contents of the jar in to a pump bottle (germ phobe!) and I still have a couple of weeks worth yet, I'm on the fence about repurchasing.

Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Overnight Purifying Gel Reveiw

Friday, 31 July 2015

I was really excited to see this new product from Nip + Fab launch, aimed at dull and oily skin helping to clear breakouts as well as reduce fine lines, revealing a more radiant and clear complexion. The perfect all-in-one product right?

The gel contains Salicylic Acid to help unclog pores and combat blackheads and reduce the size of existing spots. I have noticed in the last week I have been using the gel the pores on my cheeks seem less prominent and the dreaded blackheads on my nose don't seem as big. Another ingredient, one I've never heard of is Niacinamide, an anti-inflamatory which helps reduce production of sebum which causes pores to enlarge, ultimately reducing acne from forming on the skin. Of course we have the star ingredient, Glycol Acid which is the secret to reducing fine lines and wrinkles and help leave skin looking more firm and radiant. 

I really love the effect this product has on my skin, in the morning my skin feels firmer and pores appear tighter. The only down side to this product is application, i've not quite mastered this yet. The instructions for application merely state to smooth over skin after cleansing, I've tried applying before my moisturiser and after but the product seems to ball up and I end up with lots of dried bits of gel to rub off my face! 

Once I've mastered application this will be my favourite overnight treatment, for a mere £15 the results are fantastic. 

Benefit They're Real Beyond Brown Reveiw

Thursday, 30 July 2015

They're Real £19.50

I've only ever worn black mascara, apart from a brief obsession with blue lashes as a teenager but we'll leave that where it is. Just lately I've been loving a natural look more than ever and I decided to put away my usual black mascara and eyeliner and go for a softer approach with Benefit's new Beyond Brown They're Real.

I've had a few sample sized They're Real over the years but never considered buying a full size, no real reason just favouring others more at the time of trying the sample sized. The release of new shades made the mascara more appealing than ever and I have to say its pretty good!

Beyond Brown definitely gives a softer finish to my lashes, the longevity is good and I don't find I get much transfer when wearing. I would like the formula to be a little glossier as the finish is more of a matte brown. As with the sample sized the bristles on the brush are quite a hard plastic and if you accidentally scrape it across the inside of your eyelid you certainly will know about it! Benefit say for the best result to hold wand horizontally and wiggle side to side for lift and then turn the wand vertically and stroke upward to curl and separate. Even using this technique I struggled to get a good amount of product on my lashes, not bad if you want to avoid clumps but not so greta on the volume side of things.

All in all I'd give this mascara 6/10, it certainly doesn't give me the volume and lift of others I have owned but it will see me through my brown mascara obsession this summer.

Dupe Alert! Purse Friendly MAC Patisserie Alternative

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

After finishing lunch at work last week I was rifling around in my bag for something to slick on my lips before going back to my desk, on my first reach in to my bag I pulled out two lipsticks and upon opening them to compare shades and much to my surprise I discovered that they are practically identical!

MAC Patisserie  is an old favourite for that my-lips-only-better look, the Lustre lipsticks are among my favourite lipsticks as they provide a fuss-free juicy wash of colour. Patisserie is just the most perfect rosy-brown shade which works with any look, be it natural or bolder. Anyway on to the fabulous dupe I have discovered...

A couple of weeks ago I picked up a couple of bits from the new Rimmel by Kate Nude Collection on a bit of a whim, I've not used a Rimmel lipstick in years but I have to say I was pleasantly surprised! I favour the more natural looking makeup products for my daytime looks so a good nude is always welcome in my stash, I was drawn to shade 45 instantly as it reminded me of my favourite ever lipstick by MAC - Faux. On lips shade 45 is just like the lustre finish lipsticks in that it has a glossy sheen and a subtle amount of colour.

Comparing the two Patisserie leans ever so slightly more on the brown side and shade 45 more on the mauve side however they are very similar when wearing. At £5.49, a third of the cost of MAC's Patisserie you could throw this one on everyday and not need to worry about it running out!

Garnier Ultralift 14 Day Challenge - Day 7

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

So, I'm halfway through my 14 day trial of Garnier Ultralift Complete Beauty Day Cream and I thought I'd check in and let you know how its going. First off a nod at Garnier for actually making sample sized sachets that cover your whole face and décolleté, a lot of companies give you the tiniest amount of product to try and you can never really judge fairly how well it will work based on that. 

Although I've been sampling a day cream I've actually had to use it at night as the cream is quite rich and my oily skin just can't take something that heavy in the day so I've been applying last thing at night, they say lotions and potions work best when we're sleeping right? The cream has a quite thick and almost oily texture to it, it does sink in well although I do wake a bit shiny but this isn't an issue as I cleanse first thing in the morning. The cream has that generic cream smell to it that most high-street creams have, you know that part baby wipe and part botanical smell? The pack comes with a 'wrinkle-reader' which is not much use to me as I don't have wrinkles anywhere as deep as the example pictures, we're just talking a few fine lines around my mouth and forehead. At present I can't see those lines have faded at all, but hey we're only on week one right?

I'm looking forward to seeing if there are any noticeable changes to my skin once the trial is up, I'll check in next Tuesday to let you know!

If you want to put Garnier Ultralift to the test click here for your 14 day trial pack.

Keeping Skin Clear | Yes To Tomatoes Cleanser

Friday, 24 July 2015

You know when you discover a product so good that you want to tell everyone about it yet keep it a secret at the same time? This is that product! Yes To is a brand that I've found a little hit and miss in the past, this cleanser is a straight up hit in my routine. 

Yes To Tomatoes Clarifying Cleanser is 98% natural which already gains points from me, it's SLS and Paraben free and also cruelty free. This cleanser helps to maintain your skins PH level, remove excess oils and impurities and keep skin clear. The cleanser is kinda runny meaning you have to be quick getting it to your face after squeezing on to your fingers, I prefer applying a small amount to my konjac sponge and massage into my skin. The cleanser has that clean smell to it, if you know what I'm talking about? 

My skin definitely looks brighter since using this cleanser, it's refreshing to find a product aimed at problem skin that isn't full of alcohol and other skin damaging products. If like me you suffer from oily, blemish-prone skin I really recommend this one.

B. Skincare Favourites

Thursday, 23 July 2015

If you've not heard of or tried Superdrug's B. range then you are seriously missing out, all of the products I've tried to date have rivalled some of the highend skincare products I own. Here's a few of the products I repurchase every time they run out. 

We all know the general rule of using cream products on dry skin but despite me having oily skin this cleanser works so well! The cleanser comes with a muslin cloth, the idea is to either use daily or apply a few times a week for up to 3 minutes and buff off, I found the best results doing the latter. The cleanser contains Glycol Acid, Shea Butter and Cocoa, I've noticed a huge difference in my complexion over the last few months of having this product in my routine. 

This is THE best micellar water I've ever used, I've lost count of the amount of bottles I've been through. I use this micellar water to remove last traces of makeup before cleansing, it does an amazing job of removing even long wearing makeup in one swipe.

I use these wipes to remove the majority of my makeup, before fining with a swipe of micellar water. The wipes are soft and not at all scratchy as some I've tried can be and they stay moist right until the end of the packet, I've lost count of the amount of packets of wipes I've bought that have dried out before I've had a chance to finish them! I use the wipes specifically for makeup removal but they do cleanse, tone and hydrate in one swipe.

This product is quite new to my skincare routine and is aimed more at at ladies in their 30's but I'm enjoying it so far. B. Vitalised is a gel eye product that helps refresh tired looking eyes and smooth fine lines. The product dries quickly but leaves my under eye skin more hydrated and fresher looking. I'm looking forward to seeing the long term benefits of using it.

The B. range has a line for any skin concern, be it anti-agin or acne and they often have deals of up to half price, have a look next time you're in your local Superdrug, I promise you won't be disappointed.

Two For Tanning Your Face

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

I thought I'd follow on from last weeks post on my favourite tanning products for body with my current favourites for your face. Both products are completely fool proof and provide a natural, build- able tan.

First we have an old favourite, Clarins Radiance Plus Golden Glow Booster. This is a concentrated serum type tanner which you can customise to the depth of tan you want. One drop every day to give a light tan or keep your tan topped up and two or three drops for a deeper bronze. I mix a couple of drops with my night cream and wake up with a nice natural glow about me. I don't tend to use fake tan on my face as they generally break me out, I've never had any skin troubles with using this gentler alternative.

James Read Sleep Mask Tan is a product I've had in my stash for a while yet for some reason never tried, how stupid was I?! Sleep Mask Tan as the name would indicate is a product best applied before bed, it has all of the ingredients of nourishing skincare with the added benefit of tanner, ensuring you wake looking rested and with a natural glow.

If you're looking for facial tanning products which are both easy to use and give natural results, I couldn't recommend these two products enough.

Garnier Ultralift 14 Day Challenge

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

An anti-aging cream that guarantees to give visible results within 14 days is a bold statement to make, right? When Garnier offered a free 14 day free trial pack of their Ultralift Day cream I set aside my *ahem skincare snobbery and thought I'd give it a shot. With 23% of women seeing an improvement in skins firms within two weeks and 24% seeing fewer wrinkles in 4 weeks it had to be worth a try.

Now I don't have any major wrinkles but I am all for preventative measures when it comes to anti-ageing, anything has got to be worth a try, who wants to age gracefully?

Check back next week where I'll fill you in on my first week of using the cream!

This Weeks Most Worn

Sunday, 19 July 2015

My most worn products over the last week are a collection of both old favourites almost forgotten about and new discoveries which I'm loving, all of which I really couldn't be without in this heat.

MAC Mineralize Skinfinish Natural has seriously left me wondering why on earth I hadn't tried it before. For years and years I had avoided finishing powders as they took me back to those awful matte, pasty pale years of my teens. After struggling more than most years with controlling shine I decided to purchase this powder as it not only controls shine with a semi-matte finish but it also provides another light layer of coverage. When wearing you can barely tell you're wearing it, it doesn't cling to imperfections or to those fuzzy little hairs we ladies have, just a smooth natural finish. Love!

Another MAC favourite at the moment is their Pro Longwear Paint Pot in Soft Ochre. My usual favourite eyeshadow primers aren't keeping shadows on my oily lids, this stuff not only works great as a matte eyeshadow on it's own but also doubles up as a long wearing natural base that doesn't crease or fade. My Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette has made an appearance in my daily routine again, with the shade Stark being my everyday shade, I'm seriously gutted they don't sell this shade on it's own as I will be lost without it!

My Bobbi Brown Creamy Concealer has made it's way back into my makeup bag, I'd almost forgotten how good this stuff is! I do suffer with a little creasing under my eyes so I make sure I tissue off any excess product and set with powder to avoid it settling into the creases, the result is much brighter and more rested looking eyes.

I do currently have a Too Faced Better Than Sex mascara open but when I saw Benefit release new shades of their They're Real Mascara I was instantly drawn to the brown shade, I have to say its pretty good. The mascara itself doesn't give me the most volume and lift I've ever had from a mascara but I am enjoying the more natural look of brown lashes apposed to my normal black. I'll post a more in-depth review of this one soon.

Last but my no means least we have my current favourite blusher from Clinique, Melon Pop Cheek Pop. This stuff looks so nice with my current tan, it gives cheeks the loveliest wash of colour but keeping them looking natural and not powdery. I have the coordinating lipstick, Melon Pop and when worn together it really pulls my whole summery look together.

See any of your favourites or anything you've been dying to try?

Current Favourite Body Tanning Products

Thursday, 16 July 2015

We're all using them, if we're not using them then we're contemplating them - tanning products. This year I've strayed away from my usual gel self tan as there have been quite a few new kids on the block this spring/summer, here's my current favourites -

Bondi Sands Self Tanning Foam Light/Medium £14.99

First up is my not-leaving-the-house-all-day tan, I don't like to go to bed with self tan on, mostly because I have white sheets but also if you sweat you can end up with an uneven tan. I bought this one back in May, rather than starting the summer with a gradual tanner and moving on to a self tan I thought I'd try this as I'd seen natural looking results on social media. What I like about this self tan is it has none of that biscuity scent to it, on application it has a coconut and shea butter scent and even after washing off that famous self tan biscuity smell doesn't come through. The results for this one definitely lean more on the light side than medium, my skin felt soft after washing off and overall it's a fuss-free and non-streaky application.

St Tropez Express Bronze Mousse £33

This is my I-need-a-tan-but-dont-have-all-day tan. Let me start off by saying this tan is uh-mazing! At first I thought it was a bit rubbish, I came home from work, applied and the showered after 2 hours and couldn't see the results. St Tropez Express Mousse enables you to pick the level of intensity by how long you keep it on, 1 hour for light, 2 hours for medium, 3 hours for deep and that's nothing new I know  but now I have got the hang of it I can really appreciate it. Like any other pre-tanning day I exfoliate and moisturise well and the next day I apply and leave for the full 3 hours, when I jump in the shower I wash only the guide colour off and either shower properly that evening or the following morning as the tanner keeps working for the next 8 hours and the next day you have the most natural, deep tan. Love it!

Bondi Sands Everday Gradula Tanning Milk £11.99

This is my keeping-my-tan-topped up tan. This gradual tanner is really light and absorbs quicker than any tanning product I own, the scent is very similar to the tanning mousse from Bondi Sands. The colour is a really natural tan which used alone build to a nice shade within only a few days however I like to use this on days between using my St Tropez or the Bondi Sands mousse. You get a very generous 375ml of product so it will last a fair amount of time between repurchases.

See any of your favourites here?

Benefit Operation Pore-Proof! Pore Kit Review

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Benefit Operation Pore-Proof £28.50

I don't know about you but my skin is seriously struggling with this hot and humid weather, my trusted regular primers and foundations aren't keeping the oil at bay and for the first time ever I've purchased a setting powder! I'm a huge fan of Benefit's makeup and some of their skincare (It's Potent I'm looking at you) so with their release of this kit promising to smooth pores and control shine it seemed like an answer to my current skin woes. As I haven't struggled as much as current with controlling my shine I'd never considered a few of the older products in this kit such as Dr Feelgood or The POREfessional Agent Shine, I have a few sample sized The POREfessional Primers in my drawer and I was intrigued to try their new Shy Beam and The POREfessional licence to blot. So how did it fare?

So lets start with the one product I know a load of people swear by, The POREfessional pore minimizing balm. When I first tried this primer many years ago I didn't like it, it made my skin feel dry and didn't sit well under my foundation. Fast forward to last year and I received it in a Birchbox, thought I'd give it another shot and really enjoyed it! I don't suffer from overly huge pores but as I mentioned I do get a little oily, unfortunately I don't find this primer helps with either of those issues, it does initially create a smooth matte base but I don't find it lasts past lunch.

Next up we have Dr Feelgood complexion balm - this one I'm still trying to come to grips with as it's a quite firm, waxy type texture. It's designed to work above or under makeup, smoothing pores and fine lines and managing excess oil. I applied it with the accompanying sponge after POREfessional primer, I couldn't really see that it did reduce pores or shine, when I have a day at home I will try it over my foundation, the morning I tried it I had work and didn't want to mess my base up.

Once I'd got my primer and foundation on I decided to try Shy Beam, Benefit's new matte nude pink highlighter (not available on it's own until 2016). I'm a bit puzzled by this one, my skintone is medium at the moment (NC20 if we're talking MAC) and you couldn't see I had it on. It doesn't have any apparent 'highlight' to it, I'm not sure if this is aimed at darker skintones than mine but it just doesn't work on me.

After I'd applied bronzer and blusher I moved on to POREfessional Agent Zero Shine, I really like this powder, it has a kinda mineral powder feeling to it in the respect that it is light and fluffy. The only pain with this sample is the packaging, the instructions advise to tap the pot in to the lid and then swirl product with a brush and apply to your face. How do you tip the product in to the lid without then spilling the powder from the pot as you lift it? I'm guessing the full size product has a better method of application.

Lastly we have POREfessional Licence to blot, I'm sure you can't have missed this one when it launched. Unlike the full size version the sample sized in this kit is small and rounded, much like a lip balm. This is another one I'm trying to get the hang of, I've tried applying it lightly in a blotting motion, to avoid moving the makeup underneath, to areas with shine and I can't see any obvious removal of excess oil. The instructions state to apply the product in short swift strokes, I can't see how this can be done without disturbing your base?

I'm still on the fence with this kit. I think I need to get to grips with a couple of the products before I finally pass the verdict on it. If like me you've not really delved in to Benefit's more core products then this is a great place to start.

Clinique Melon Pop Cheek Pop Blusher

Thursday, 9 July 2015

I will admit that I overlooked Clinique's Cheek Pop blushers the first time they came around, sure the flower design was beautiful but the shades just didn't appeal to me. Fast forward to the extension to their range with four new shades available in the UK and I am now hooked. When Clinique released their Lip Pop lipsticks I rushed out and bought Melon Pop and Beige Pop, sure I probably have ten blushers which would coordinate with each of those lipsticks but whats more novel than buying the coordinating blusher?

Melon pop is a complexion lifting peachy coral shade which looks absolutely lovely against my current tan. Like the other two Cheek Pop's I own (Nude Pop & Ginger Pop) the formula is silky and natural looking, you can't tell you're wearing a powder blush at all! I'm really hoping they extend the range that's available in the UK to the twelve shades that are available in the U.S (think back to me drooling over Nude Pop for months and someone kindly having to send me one from the U.S before I exploded!). 

Do you own any of Clinique's Cheek Pop blushers? Which are your favourite?

Trial-Sized Tuesday's | Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel from £5

A few weeks ago I did a post on Clinique's Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion and I loved it, still do, only now the weather is heating up I found that after a couple of hours of applying my face was left considerably more oily than usual so I decided to purchase a 15ml tube of their DDM Gel which is specifically for oily skin and I have to say it's definitely more suited to my skin type.

Compared to Clinique's DDM Lotion the texture and consistency of the DDM Gel is quite a bit lighter and less tacky on the skin. The gel absorbs into skin quite quickly and has left me noticeably less oily even late in to the day. The only gripe I have about this moisturiser is the fact it has no SPF in it, not a major issue as I've been using Clinique's City Block SPF40 (post to follow) underneath but we all love a multi-tasking product don't we?

I can imagine this will be a moisturiser I will continue to use throughout the summer as it leaves my skin comfortable and shine-free.

Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara Review + B&A Photos!

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Recently my favourite mascara, Lancome Hypnose, ran out *sheds a tear and I took to my Muji drawers for a replacement. Too Faced Better Than Sex mascara had been sat waiting for use for over a year and much to my delight it hadn't dried up or gone clumpy. I know a lot of gals go wild for this mascara as it gives volume and body to even the most non existent lashes but I must admit I had overlooked it as the only products from Too Faced that have ever appealed to me were their bronzers. Ready for the results and my thoughts?

Top Without Mascara
Middle One Coat
Bottom Two Coats

Excuse the puffy little morning eyes but pretty impressive stuff huh? My natural lashes are a light mouse brown and have no real length or body about them so this mascara is a welcome addition to my makeup routine. As you ca see the formula is blackest black and despite me having oily eyelids it doesn't transfer or smudge. I do find the brush to be a bit more bulky than I'm used to so I have to be a bit more focused when a applying but with results as full-bodied as this a little more time spent applying isn't an issue.

Still doesn't quite top my favourite Lancome Hypnose mascara but it's up there.

Bourjois Mat Illusion Bronzer Review (Shade T21)

Thursday, 2 July 2015

As soon as I saw a new bronzer in Bourjois' new summer range I knew I would own it, with it's chic packaging and promise of delivering a sun kissed, airbrushed finish, what's not to want. So how does it fare?

Well to start, I went for shade T21 which is the fairer of the two and it works so well on my pale complexion. I find it leans slightly on the more terracotta/orangey side but this isn't a problem as it looks really natural on. When Bourjois said the bronzer contained 'soft focus pigments' I really didn't buy in to the claim that a bronzer could help leave your skin with such a smooth finish, but it really does! Even the most heavy handed of users won't have an issue with blending this bronzer, I feel confident enough to apply without looking! The product itself smells delicious, somewhere between that clean scent of baby wipes and sweets, it delish! Although this bronzer ensures a smooth and almost luminous finish to your complexion it is intact completely matte and not at all powdery or drying.

Staying power wise I don't have any issues with this bronzer, multiple mirror checks throughout the day don't reveal any fading. All-in-all I love this bronzer, it seems to smooth my complexion and even has the added benefit of SPF 10!

Have you tried any of Bourjois new bronzing products? I'm dying to try Sun Illusion Skin Perfector!

Current Favourites

I was deliberating on whether to do a 'June Favourites' post but as I have been forcing myself to do a weekly rotation of the products in my makeup bag (with exception to my base products) I don't really have any products I couldn't leave alone but there are a few I'm finding hard to put away.

First up we have the beautiful Stila Field Of Florals Palette £30, I wanted this palette ever since I saw it's release in the US and it was so worth the wait. Even the shades I thought would not work on my fairly pale complexion sheer out to a beautiful wash of colour. Cream blushers are my favourite and with the huge variety of shades in this palette it's a true space saver in your makeup bag.

Laura Mercier Foundation Primer has been my favourite primer over the last couple of weeks, I had completely forgotten what a pleasure it is to use. This cooling gel primer doesn't do an amazing job of concealing pores or blurring lines but it does give my base a glowing finish and keeps everything in place all day, perfect for the summer.

Clinique's Nude Pop Cheek Pop blusher unfortunately isn't available in the UK so I won't go on about it too much but I will say now I'm sporting more of a bronzed look it's perfect for that barely there makeup look.

Ok so NARS Light Reflecting Setting Powder £26.50 hasn't just recently been a favourite of mine but it is one that I'm really starting to appreciate more now the warm weather is here. This powder keeps everything in place all day without that obvious powder finish to your skin, I adore this stuff!

Another product that has been a favourite for a while and an absolute godsend in this weather is Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade £15, this stuff really doesn't fade or budge. I'd recently discovered the product was starting to dry up and really didn't want to part with it so I placed a drop of baby oil in and voila it's totally revived!

I'd recently ran out of my favourite Lancome Hypnose mascara and rather than rushing out for a new one I though I'd try some of the mascara's in my stash waiting to be used. Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara £19 has been a pleasant surprise, I initially thought it wouldn't be all that as the brush on the wand is quite big but it does an amazing job of separating and lengthening lashes.

June Empties

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

I was on a bit of a mission to work my way through samples last month and I think my June empties reflects this. So here's my empties, thoughts and any repurchases.

First up is Eau Micellaire Demaquillante (Micellar Water) from My Little Box. Unfortunately their beauty products are not available to buy in the UK, I honestly can't wait until they are as I have really enjoyed each of their beauty products I have received in my monthly subscription. This micellar water did a great job of lifting makeup and smelt like a refreshing cup of green tea. I'll b first in line when their UK online shop opens.

I did a post on Bumble & Bumble's Invisible Oil Shampoo & Condtitioner a couple of weeks ago, it's on my payday wishlist. After onlyone use my hair felt thoroughly cleansed and left silky and frizz-free.

Boots Botanics Microdermabrasion Polish is probably THE best exfoliator I have ever used, this stuff is like pure sand and completely buffs away dull skin. Once I've used up some of the exfoliators I already have open I will be returning to this one for sure.

I've already gone on to repurchase Percy & Reed Eau My Goodness Shine & Fragrance Spray as I've never used a shine spray as good as this one. Not only does it leave hair with mirror shine but it also acts as a hair perfume leaving hair refreshed.

Lancome Hypnose Mascara  is my all time favourite mascara for length and definition. I have a stash of mascaras I need to work my way through but I definitely will be repurchasing this one.

I really don't get the hype surrounding Glamglow Youthmud, maybe it's one of those products you need to use and over time will see results. More than anything I found this mask to be an irritant to my skin, the mask indicates a tingle when using but I found it to burn my rather un-sensitive skin.

The Body Shop Honey Bronzer is one of those products I stock up on and always have on standby ready for when it runs out. This is the only bronzer that I have ever owned that blends seamlessly and looks natural even on my pale winter skin. A must have in my makeup bag.

I'm yet to see the results of Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream, but after only a few weeks of using I wasn't expecting to see a miracle, although it does promise to deliver results within 15 days. I have gone on to purchase the full size product as this was only a sample, the cream is pleasant to use and doesn't leave my skin feeling oily like some anti-agog products do.

Moroccanoil Hydrating Hair Mask is a must have for my thick, dry hair. I love anything that has organ oil in as it transforms my hair, this one has already been repurchased.

Not only does Beauty Protector Protect & Treat Mask smell uh-mazing but it does the most amazing job of softening course and dry hair and ensures you have no frizz or fly-aways. This mask is only available to purchase from the Birchbox shop, I will be stocking up soon.

Trial-Sized Tuesday's | Smashbox Pore Minimizing Primer Review

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Another week, another delve into the sample drawer and another primer review. I'd wanted to try Smashbox Photo Finish Pore Minimizing Primer ever since it was released but at £28 I didn't want to purchase it and not like it (like I did with their Photo Finish Primer) and low and behold with a recent ASOS order there was a sample. So how did it fare?

The texture of this primer is quite like Benefit's Porefessional, in that it's quite like a balm. I was amazed at how well it smoothed pores and mattified my skin, initially it was love at first use. My foundation sat perfectly over the top and the primer managed to keep oil at bay from my t-zone practically all day. My skin looked flawless, that was until I checked my face after around 8 hours of wear, my foundation had gone all patchy and separated on my chin and around my nose. Huge disappointment! I've never used a primer that had actually separated and gone blotchy, I hear others talking about that issue all the time but this is the first primer I have actually experienced that with.

So initial finish is amazing but it just didn't stand the test of time with me, I tried the primer for a further 2 days and unfortunately found the same problem again. I'm just glad I didn't part with my cash for the full-size product.

MAC Pro Longwear Paint Pot | Soft Ochre | Swatch & Review

Sunday, 28 June 2015

After reading what feels like a thousand posts on MAC's paint pots and almost daily donning a barely-there-eye I decided to purchase Soft Ochre last week and it really is one of those products that has left me wondering why the hell I didn't buy it before!

I wear MAC's Studio Fix Fluid foundation in the shade NC15 and Soft Ochre matches my base perfectly, covering any darkness on my eyelids and leaving the perfect nude base. 

MAC claim their Paint Pots to be 'a highly pigmented colour that goes on creamy and dries to a vibrant, intense finish' and I'll second that! Soft Ochre has a completely matte finish which lasts and lasts, I have quite oily eyelids and this cream eyeshadow doesn't crease or fade, it also works as a great base for eyeshadows to help longevity and intenseness.

I've definitely got the bug for MAC's Paint Pots, which are your favourites?

My Top 4 Masks For Problem Skin

Saturday, 27 June 2015

Unless you're one of those absolutely blessed people (which I envy/hate for it) who rarely get spots then we're all from time-to-time going to experience congested skin leading to an outbreak. I only ever get the occasional hormonal break-out on my chin and jawline (thanks to PCOS) but I do struggle from quite oily skin which I have to keep in check, so here's the once-a-week treatments I use to keep congested skin at bay.

Liz Earle Deep Cleansing Mask £15.75

This is my favourite mask for helping to balance my skin and regulate oiliness. I tend to smooth this over my t-zone only as I don't suffer from oiliness all over my face and my skin really feels as though all the excess oils and impurities have been drawn out, leaving my skin smooth and mattified. This mask isn't advised to be used on sensitive skin so I don't tend to use this on a breakout.

Yes To Tomatoes Clearing Face Mask £11.99

Over the last couple of years this mask is the one I've reached for when I'm having a particularly troublesome breakout as it does an amazing job of getting those nasty inflamed spots down. As well as treating existing spots it help balance skin and absorb excess sebum, leaving skin feeling deeply cleansed and calmer.

Super Facialist Salicylic Acid Anti Blemish Clay Mask £9.99

This one is fairly new to my collection but I can say after only three or four uses that it works, for me at least. As its name indicates it contains spot fighting Salicylic Acid to help clear out congested pores and Dead Sea Mud to absorb oil. I used this mask over the weekend as I had a corker of a spot on my chin and the next morning after using this mask it had shrunken in size quite considerably. The only thing I don't like about this mask is the scent, to me it smells quite overwhelmingly of burnt plastic, this will have to be the price to pay for something that works so efficiently.

Quick Fix Facials Exfoliating Scrub Mask £4.99

This little gem has quickly become my favourite mask. Aimed to treat stubborn blackheads and blocked pores and balance skin. Its recommended to massage the mask into skin to exfoliate and then leave it for 5-10 minutes before removing but I have found the best results doing the opposite. I leave the mask for 10 minutes and then with damp fingertips spend a couple of minutes massaging the scrub into my skin and then remove with a damp muslin cloth and all I can say is wow! My skin feels super clean, smooth and rid of any excess oil. You'll get 10+ masks from each 100ml tube, at less than 49p per mask and incredible results this is one I am sure to repurchase.

Talkin' About Toners - For Problem Skin

Thursday, 25 June 2015

Firstly let me start off with an apology for the poor quality photo, the weather is pretty gloomy and it's really overcast here today *sad face.  I thought I'd do a little post on my favourite toners as I use these three regularly but for different purposes.

So we'll start from the left shall we? La Roche-Posay Serozinc Spray is my morning toner, I use it straight after cleansing and it's designed to mattify skin and leave it less shiny and greasy. I love the fact this toner comes in a spray bottle, it's really cooling and wakes your skin up. I've been Serozinc for about 3 weeks now and I'm really enjoying it, I find my skin is less oily throughout the day.  

Next up is one you must have seen before, Pixi Glow Tonic. I use this toner pretty much every morning (before Serozinc) and again in the evening. It's one of those products where you don't see the gradual change in your skin but all of a sudden you'll start getting compliments from other people. I think I've mentioned before that I'm addicted to anything that contains Glycol and that's what drew me to this toner. If you have skin that's a little lacklustre and you want something that will exfoliate whilst toning then this is for you.

Last but certainly not least is Caudalie Beauty Elixir. This is the toner I like to use after having my twice-weekly face mask or when I'm having a break-out. Imagine someone with a mouth full of mint blowing on your face, that's how refreshing this stuff is. It's cooling, soothing and instantly tightens my pores after cleansing. Although I use this as a toner you can use it to prime skin and set makeup, it's truly a marvel.

Do yo see any of your favourites here?

Bourjois Aqua Blush | Review & Swatches

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Bourjois are my favourite 'drugstore brand' and I always get excited when they have new releases, especially something as special as their new Aqua Blush. These gel blushers are the most fresh and fun product I have used on my face in a while, the formula is silky and blends impeccably to a natural sheer finish and the product itself smells fruity and feels cooling on your cheeks. One pump was more than enough for both cheeks for me, I dotted on to cheeks and buffed with my Real Techniques buffing brush and the result is just what I look for in a blusher...

I chose the two shades which I knew would get the most wear from, heres Cocoricorail a complexion lifting coral and Ingè-Nude a brightening nude peach.

Left | Cocoricorail
Right | Ingè-Nude

What's blown me away most about these blushers is the longevity, despite having a sheer finish they do not fade, in fact they are a bit of a pain to remove from your fingers after applying! 

Have you picked up any of Bourjois new releases?

Trial-Sized Tuesday's | Pixi Flawless & Poreless Primer

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

It's that time of the week again, where I have a did around in my ever growing stash of samples for something new that will hopefully blow me a way. So my MAC primer ran out a few weeks ago and I've been trying to work my way through some others before I repurchase it, unfortunately none of them compare so I figured I'd give this one a shot.

Pixi's Flawless and Poreless Primer claims to be 'a miracle in a tube' which is a bold claim to make and I had high expectations after reading this. So before I give you my verdict on the product after using it for a few days lets delve further in to what's in it. So, the primer claims to smooth lines and create a no-shine silky canvas for foundation. As well as smoothing pores and prepping skin the primer has active ingredients beneficial to skin which over time will improve skin texture and clarity - Willow Bark to control shine, Salicylic Acid to clear and unblock pores, Shea Butter to nourish skin and something I've never heard of before - Enantia Chlorantha which is medicinal and anti-viral.

So how did it perform? Well, there was enough in the sample for 3 uses so I can't comment on the long term benefits of using this primer but I can tell you that for me it didn't control shine very well nor did it make my pores appear smaller. If i had applied this primer blind I would have said the intended result was for a dewy finish as this is how it left my skin. This primer certainly isn't the worst I've tried how ever it is a way away from being the best I've tried. I'm interested in trying more Pixi products as I have been enjoying their infamous Glow Tonic for the last few weeks.

Do you have any Pixi favourites? 

Nail Of The Week | Nails Inc St Johns Wood Garden NailKale

Thursday, 18 June 2015

Whilst browsing one my favourite sites for a new nail polish last week I stumbled across the prettiest shade which left me having to resist the urge to look at my nails every ten minutes. St Johns Wood Gardens is the loveliest peachy pink shade that looks just perfect against a tan. 

Although I own more Nails Inc polishes than I care to admit this is my first from their NailKale range and I have to say that despite all of the nail loving ingredients (Zinc, Calcium and Kale to strengthen and protect) the formula isn't any less impressive than their regular polishes. For complete opaqueness I applied 3 thin coats and finished with Seche Vite Quick Dry, my surefire way to guarantee no chips all week. One thing that never fails to impress me is the brushes Nails Inc use for their polishes, the perfect size and shape to ensure a neat finish and even coverage.

I really love this shade, it's the perfect transitional spring to summer shade which I promise you won't be able to stop looking at!

Clinique SS15 New Releases Cheek Pop | Nude Pop Review

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Ok so this post may come as a bit of a teaser to anyone that reads my posts outside of the U.S as the shade I'm featuring in today's post isn't actually available in the UK, a very kind friend managed to get one sent over to me here, I can't be the only person who finds it mega frustrating that cosmetic companies will only bring extensions to their current lines out in certain parts of the world, almost as if they can determine what one lady from one country will love more than another!

I already have a couple of Clinique's Cheek Pop's in brighter shades but when I saw this one, Nude Pop, I knew I just had to have it as it's the perfect everyday shade. Like the other Cheek Pop's the formula is incredibly smooth and has a very slight amount of shimmer to it leaving cheeks looking dewy and fresh. What I love about these blushers is that despite the formula being light you don't need a lot of product for a good result and it keeps the prettiness of the flower in the pan in tact for longer!

It's such a shame that Clinique only decided to bring out another 4 shades over here in the UK, there are 12 beautiful shades available in the U.S including a gorgeous looking berry shade called Cola Pop that I may need to add to my collection for the autumn. 

Stila Field Of Florals Convertible Colour Dual Lip & Cheek Palette

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

You know when makeup companies bring out a product in the U.S and annoyingly either don't make it available here in the UK for ages or sometimes not at all and you have to bitterly read others blog posts on it until you can get your hands on it? This was that product. I spotted this palette was released in the U.S back in February and after emailing/tweeting/posting on Facebook asking Stila when/if it would be available in the UK and not receiving a reply I had given up all hope of owning it. Much to my delight I got my hands on it a couple of weeks ago and let me tell you it was so worth the wait!

Field Of Florals Convertible Colour Dual Lip & Cheek Palette is (apart from being a mouthful!) the most beautiful palette of both muted shades and brights that as the title indicates can be used on either your cheeks or lips. I do already own four of the full size dual lip and cheek colours and they are ranked amongst the highest in my cream blush collection. If you haven't tried Stila's Convertible Colour's then you really are missing out as these aren't your traditional cream blush, although the shades can seem a little intimidating in the pan when applied to your cheeks/lips they offer a sheer wash of colour and a dewy finish. 

The shades included in this aptly named palette (from top left) are- Lillium, Magnolia, Tulip, Camellia, Peony, Rose, Gladiola, Peach Blossom, Hibiscus, Gerbera, Petunia and Fuchsia. Tulip was one of my most worn shades over the winter and Hibiscus is one of my all time favourites. 

If you're looking for a multi use palette that gives a fresh wash of colour then this one comes highly recommended by me.

Trial-Sized Tuesday's | Bumble & Bumble Invisible Oil Shampoo & Conditioner Review

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Whilst rooting around in my drawer literally bursting with samples on the weekend I came across this little duo, I often just give away hair products as I'm pretty strict with my hair routine but as I've been seeing more and more of their legendary salt spray everywhere lately I thought I'd give the samples a shot and see what all the fuss was about.

So before I let you know my thoughts on the product let me give you a little background into the condition of my hair and my regular routine. So, my hair is quite thick and naturally curly but 90% of the time I wear it straight which means I use quite a few products to tame the frizz and keep it straight. My routine begins with a moisturising shampoo and conditioner (usually Aussie Moist shampoo & conditioner) and then prior to styling I use a couple of drops of Argan oil and a heat protection spray (usually Toni & Guy). The majority of the time this does it for me, once a week I throw a deep conditioning treatment and a leave-in conditioner into the mix for extra moisture but after all this my hair is feeling a little lank by the end of the week from the build up of product. Queue Bumble & Bumble Hairdressers Invisible Oil Sulphate Free Shampoo & Conditioner

Aimed at dry, coarse and brittle hair this sulphate free shampoo is infused with 6 oils to help soften, tame frizz, detangle and protect. One thing I noticed, even with my hair still being damp in the shower, was how squeaky clean my hair felt after using it. I did use the whole sample but I could have easily used a lot less as it lathered incredibly well and was easy to work in to my hair. I followed with the conditioner, which again I could have used only half of what I did and left for 10 minutes whilst I did my thang in the shower. Drying and styling my hair was a lot easier after using this shampoo and conditioner and I didn't require as many finishing products. The two days after washing my hair it was so smooth and silky and despite having a windy afternoon on Sunday my hair kept tangle free. 

I loved these samples, so much so I took straight to the web to see how much this duo would set me back, at £23 for 250ml of the shampoo and £25 for 200ml of the conditioner I don't think I'll purchase it for my everyday hair routine but I shall definitely be purchasing for my Sunday hair detox.

Do you have any Bumble & Bumble recommendations?

May Skincare Favourites

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

My monthly favourites posts are usually about makeup so this month I thought I'd share my favourite
skincare products, two of which are old favourites and two of which are great new discoveries.

First up we have Clarins Double Serum which I have been using for around 7 months and have noticed a considerable change in my skins texture and tone. Having oily skin has kept those wrinkles at bay and I bought this more as a preventative measure as I turn 27 this year. I had some fine lines (or laughter lines) around my mouth which have faded a lot and the once large pores on my cheeks have shrunken considerably. I winced a little as I handed over £55 for the 30ml bottle but as it lasts (with daily use) for nearly 6 months I can live with a justifiable £10 per month for an anti-ageing product which works for me.

Next up we have Dr LeWinn's Overnight Exfoliator which after searching for a link to the product I have just discovered has been discontinued *sad face. I have been suing this amazing product 3 nights a week for the last 12 months and my skin has never looked better. I suffered with a terrible bout of acne a couple of years ago and this overnight Glycolic peel has faded my scars and evened out my skin tone. Finding a similar product with the same amazing results will be difficult...leave me a comment if you can recommend something!

I had read quite a few posts on Pai BioRegenerate Fruit & Seed Oil Blend and last month decided to take the plunge and add it to my routine. I am a fan of Rosehip Oil, after my acne bout it healed my skin and combined with a couple of other treatments really aided the fading of scars and brimging back the glow to my complexion. This facial oil helps fade acne scars, stretch marks, fine lines and UV damage. I use this 3 nights after cleansing and before my night cream and my skin feels soft and radiant by morning.

Last but by all means least we have my second new skincare product for May, Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream. I had been dying to give this cream a try for as long as I can remember but was always put of by the price, luckily this cream came to me via a more affordable alternative to the regular £80 purchase price (via the You Beauty Discovery Box) and I have to say I'm impressed with the results so far. I have noticed a little goes a long way and I do find I have to massage quite well as it doesn't absorb instantly but my skin is guaranteed to be soft and supple in the morning, I'm looking forward to seeing the long term benefits of using this moisturiser.

Which are your current skincare favourites?

Design by | SweetElectric