It’s funny isn’t it, how bad experiences with skincare can put you off a brand. Back in my late teens, the Clinique Three Step Skincare regime was in the in thing, and I used it to death. My knowledge of skincare wasn’t particularly great back then and going with what my friends were using rather than listening to skin ended up with me using totally the wrong products that stripped my skin of every bit of moisture it had in it. Maybe I should have taken a step back and looked at what was happening, but I was really pleased with myself for cleansing, toning and moisturising. To say that Clinique left a bad taste in my mouth was an understatement and it took me a long time to get back into the brand. Now that I’m more aware of my skins needs, I know that I shouldn’t be cleansing with a soap, using a toner for oily skin when its actually more on the dry side, and the need for a hydrating moisturiser. I’ve started afresh with Clinique, and I’m not afraid to admit that the bad taste that I once had is no longer there.

The cult favourite Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm has been a very hyped post and in my original post from 2014, I still really didn’t get the hype at all. Since I’ve been having huge issues with my skin and have totally overhauled my entire skin care regime, the Take The Day Off Balm has made an appearance with a brand new post, and two very cute embroidered muslin cloths with my initials on them.

Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm

Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm

Starting afresh with the balm, I dived right in to see if it indeed could remove stubborn makeup such as mascara in one go. Heading into the bathroom with a full face of make up, and totally ignoring my initial cleanse with a wipe to start to dissolve the makeup, I rubbed a small amount of the oily balm across my face. Within minutes, I resembled a panda as the oil turned to milk and started to break down every scrap of makeup on my skin. After rinsing, my skin felt so clean and smooth that I was a little bit in shock. I couldn’t remember the balm ever making my skin feel this good. In fact, I remember saying that it felt horribly cloying on my face. Maybe a second chance is all that it needed.

It’s been so good, that I’ve swapped from my trusty Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish and have solely been using the Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm each time I have cleansed. I hold my hand up, I was wrong before. Clinique, you have converted me, and for that I’m so grateful. As is my wonderfully cleansed skin!

If you want to try the Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm, head down to John Lewis on the 25th and 26th May and get your free travel sized 15ml pot. There’s no purchase necessary to try it, but I guarantee that you will be back to buy a full sized one in no time.

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Ok girls, I have one for you here. Did you know that Fragrance Direct, the home of the best prices for all the top named perfumes have started selling makeup? Not just any old makeup either, they have massive brands such as NARS, MAC and Esteé Lauder as well as more budget names such as Maybelline, Rimmel and Bourjois. I had to have a splurge and get topped up on some products that I had ran out of as well as treat myself to some bits that had been on my lust list for quite some time. Not only could I get everything under one website but it was quite a bit cheaper and there is free delivery on orders over £20. It’s a shoppers paradise!

Naturally, I headed straight to MAC to see what was on offer. Although the savings aren’t huge, a £2 or £3 saving does make a difference especially when you are getting a few products. I wanted to try the MAC Eye Kohl in Teddy as I had heard so many people talking about it. The kohl itself is is a super soft and smudgy, creamy eye kohl in a deep dark chocolate brown that dries as matte whilst the intense bronze within in glitters like the stars at night. I can see why it’s got such a good reputation and for someone like myself who only ever wears a thick black winged eyeliner, it’s a welcome change without it feeling too different from my usual style.

Fragrance Direct Does Makeup!

Fragrance Direct Does Makeup! MAC Teddy Kohl

Fragrance Direct Does Makeup! MAC Teddy Kohl

Fragrance Direct Does Makeup! MAC Breath of Plum Sheertone Blush

Fragrance Direct Does Makeup! MAC Breath of Plum Sheertone Blush

I also had a great idea of starting yet another custom MAC Blush palette. Thinking that I already had two at home, and that a third would help me on my way to completing my second palette, I chose MAC Breath of Plum blush. Kirsty from Life in Excess recommended this shade to me quite some time ago, so it’s been on my list for a while. Silly me though, I had two eyeshadow singles and not two blush singles, so now I need five more shades for my palette. Send suggestions please!

Around 3 years ago, I bought the 150 Year Anniversary edition of the Bourjois Jave Rice Powder but it was slightly too pink on my skin for me to enjoy it. It’s such a shame as the powder itself was amazing. Finely milled and super soft, it was a perfect setting powder. When I spotted the Bourjois Poudre Illuminatrice, which is a more champagne toned shade with beautiful shimmer, I was all over it and it was nearly half the recommend retail price.

Fragrance Direct Does Makeup! Bourjois Poudre Illuminatrice

Fragrance Direct Does Makeup! Borjois Poudre Illuminatrice

Fragrance Direct Does Makeup! EStee Lauder Perfectionist

Fragrance Direct Does Makeup! Estee Luader Perfectionist

Fragrance Direct Does Makeup! Nars Orgasm Illuminator

Fragrance Direct Does Makeup! Nars Orgasm Illuminator

Running out of my favourite foundation is a very upsetting time. With the amount of foundation that I have in my stash, you would think that I could just pick one of those, but I was pining for my Esteé Lauder Perfectionist. It really is one of the best foundations I’ve used. Full coverage like Double Wear but with a serum property that keeps my skin feeling hydrated and not like the mask like finish that Double Wear often gives. In 3N1 Ivory Beige, it looks to have been a big seller as it’s no longer in stock, but the selection of Esteé Lauder make up that they have is brilliant, and it’s worth checking back.

With summer coming up, I want my skin to be glowing from space and the NARS Orgasm Illuminator has been back on my wishlist yet again. I have had some many sample sizes and deluxe samples of the Illuminator yet I’ve never picked up a full sized one. With a tan, and rubbed onto bare skin it looks gorgeous, and I like to add a drop or two to my moisturiser or foundation to give a subtle glow. It’s a definite all rounder, and it makes sense to complete the collection with the final piece.

I’m absolutely amazed at all the brands and products available on Fragrance Direct and it’s given me some serious wishlist inspiration along with picking a few new scents for my summer fragrance wardrobe. Have you spotted any bargains yet?

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I do love social media and my blogger friends who are absolute enablers when it comes to all things make up and beauty. We really are the ones to turn to when it comes to finding out when products are back in stock, special offers on those much needed items and of course, for the sheer honesty when it comes to recommending. Taking to Twitter a few weeks ago, and it was going crazy because QVC had brought back stock of the Tarte Shape Tape, which has been harder to get hold of than a limited edition Kylie Lip Kit. Not only did they have stock, but they were also offering Easy Pay, in which you could pay for your item over four months. An offer too good to be true for any beauty fanatic, I quickly snagged myself a Shape Tape (more about that later) and I decided to grab the Tarte Rainforest of The Sea Skin Twinkle II. I needed another highlighter palette and especially when Kasie from Kasie Beauty raved about Tarte that much that I couldn’t resist, plus I love the previous QVC TSV of the Tarte set that I purchased.

The great thing about QVC is that not only does it have access to brands like Tarte, in fact it’s the only stockist of Tarte in the UK, but it sells products as sets that you wouldn’t necessarily be able to get if you were to order directly from Tarte. The Tarte Rainforest of The Sea Skin Twinkle II set that I purchased was just under £30 and came with a beautiful Rainforest of the Sea fan brush. To buy these direct from Tarte, the palette is £34, the brush £26 plus shipping and taxes would bring both items to £72! It’s a total no brainer to try QVC first. What I will say is that due to the popularity, the stock levels are hit and miss but do keep checking back as they do update their stock quite frequently. I am however still waiting for the Tarte Amazonian Pro Palette to come back in stock and it’s been nearly a month.

Tarte Rainforest of The Sea Skin Twinkle II

Tarte Rainforest of The Sea Skin Twinkle II

Tarte Rainforest of The Sea Skin Twinkle II

Tarte Rainforest of The Sea Skin Twinkle II

Tarte Rainforest of The Sea Skin Twinkle II

Back to the palette itself, the Tarte Rainforest of The Sea Skin Twinkle II is just beautiful. I first saw it in all it’s glory on Nathan from Plastic Loafer’s blog and Instagram. A palette containing four highlighting shades that are quite reminiscent of the ones from Anastasia Beverly Hills in terms of quality and formulation. The shades are Daylight – a white gold, Skylight – a pearl, Spotlight – a champagne, and Candlelight – a rose gold. Although they aren’t groundbreaking in shades, and I probably have many similar, the colours in the palette are the shades that I feel that every makeup wardrobe needs. The addition of a rose gold shade is great for me, as I do love a darker shade to wear as a highlight over bronzer, plus it also caters for warmer and darker skin tones.

The swatches have been applied using my finger on a un-primed arm, and I used a few swipes to make them opaque enough for them to show a clear colour. When using the brush to apply to your skin, they diffuse out beautifully, leaving that wondrous lit from within glow. The blend out with ease and don’t leave that over the top shimmer like some highlighting powders. They’re very finely milled which means that they don’t settle into pores and fine lines and it also helps with the amount of product that you need. They’re that fine that I had a slight accident and stuck my fingernail right into one of the shades and it literally cut like melted butter. Amazing but very upsetting for a brand new palette, hence the reason why the fan brush is covering it up. I am so clumsy!

It’s currently in stock on QVC UK, as well as being on Easy Pay Instalments, so I really think you need to get one. Off you pop! You won’t regret it!

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In the nicest possible way, I have been trying to avoid using By Terry because I knew that I would fall head over heels in love with it. Falling in love with it isn’t the issue, but it’s high end price point is just that little bit out of my budget. But, sometimes, a girl just has to treat herself and my god, I am obsessed. I started off small with the travel size By Terry Hyaluronic Hydra-Powder; a silky smooth, finely milled translucent setting powder that has done wonders for my under eyes. I then found myself trying samples of the skin care, before moving onto the brand new and totally gorgeous By Terry Tropical Sunset Sun Collection. Holy mother of all things beautiful, it took me a great deal of time before I could even bring myself to swatch my new goodies. The By Terry Tropical Sunset Collection is made up of two palettes, eight brand new Blackstar pencils and the Tea to Tan Summer Edition. It’s quite simply beautiful.

By Terry Tropical Sunset Sun Collection 2017 Sun Designer Palette Savannah Love Stylo Blackstar

By Terry Tropical Sunset Sun Collection 2017 Sun Designer Palette Savannah Love Stylo Blackstar

By Terry Tropical Sunset Sun Collection 2017 Sun Designer Palette Savannah Love Stylo Blackstar

By Terry Tropical Sunset Sun Collection 2017 Sun Designer Palette Savannah Love Stylo Blackstar

By Terry Tropical Sunset Sun Collection 2017 Sun Designer Palette Savannah Love Stylo Blackstar

By Terry Tropical Sunset Sun Collection 2017 Sun Designer Palette Savannah Love Stylo Blackstar

By Terry Tropical Sunset Sun Collection 2017 Sun Designer Palette Savannah Love Stylo Blackstar

Following on from the success of the previous two Sun Designer palettes, the new shades for 2017 are everything that you would expect for summer. Featuring two different shade ranges; Tropical Sunset – the brighter of the two, and Savannah Love – a more muted palette, they are the stuff of dreams. The palettes look high end and luxurious, with beautiful presentation cases, snugly wrapped in velvet pouches for safe keeping with a more tropical design than the previous offerings. A large mirror inside the case helps with top ups on the go, and with six shades of blush, bronzer and highlighter, it’s perfect for summer travels.

The By Terry Sun Designer Palette in Savannah Love is definitely the favourite of mine from the two. Slightly more muted in colour but a lot more wearable, with the shades, for me, doubling up as eyeshadows. Neutral, fuchsia pink and browns mixed with soft pinks and beiges. A palette that I would normally choose over and over again. For my first By Terry palette, I was absolutely blown away by the pigmentation of the swatches. Each swatch on my arm was applied with my finger, using two swipes at the most over my unprimed arm. Intense, vibrant and absolutely exquisite, I was in awe from the moment I saw it. It’s one of those palettes that you don’t want to use because it’s too pretty to start making dents in the shades, but the colours are so flattering on the skin, that I don’t want to use anything else at the moment.

By Terry have also updated the cult favourite Ombre Blackstars to bring the By Terry Stylo Blackstar; a three in one eyeshadow stick. Unlike the Ombre Blackstars, the pencil has a pointed tip to allow for use as a sharp eyeliner, as well as an eye contour and all over eyeshadow. As I have never tried the Ombre Blackstar shadows, I cannot compare however I believe that the finish of the Ombre Blackstar is more shimmery whereas the Style Blackstars has a more muted and pearlescent finish. They Stylo Blackstar range has eight shades, including a beautiful mint green that I must get, as well as the two shades that I have; #5 Marron Glace ans #2 Purpulyn Gem. The pencils have an integrated sharpener to keep the point nice and sharp, which can be found by pulling the coloured band from the bottom of the pencil, a secure lid to decrease dryness as well as a twist up mechanism that hold an awful lot of product.

By Terry Tropical Sunset Sun Collection 2017 Sun Designer Palette Savannah Love Stylo Blackstar

By Terry Tropical Sunset Sun Collection 2017 Sun Designer Palette Savannah Love Stylo Blackstar

By Terry Tropical Sunset Sun Collection 2017 Sun Designer Palette Savannah Love Stylo Blackstar

Having tried these out as both eyeliner and eyeshadow, I can’t tell you just how impressed I am. As eyeliners, they are incredible. The don’t bleed, smudge or settle under my eye instead of where I placed it, and as a shadow, I need an oil based remover to get them off. You only have a small window of time to quickly blend when using them as a shadow as they lock in place and are totally smudgeproof. I suffer with weeping eyes when I’m in the sun or windy weather and even the tears didn’t have an effect!

Thankfully, I spend a lot of time in Space NK, so I can play around with the rest of the collection before taking the step to pick up some more, but I definitely need to grab some more of the Stylo Blackstar shades. Copper Crush and Aqua Mint, I’m coming for you next!

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There has been a show on TV for the past two years, which I’m not sure if you have heard about. It’s called The Real Housewives of Cheshire and it shows the glamorous lives of the ladies and touches upon their successes of their own businesses. Thanks to my good friend Steph from Ledigo PR, I happened to meet the girls and have become quite friendly with three of the girls; Tanya, Leanne and Lauren. I’ve watched the girls flourish in their success over the last two years and have supported them in their brands such as Tanya’s Dream To Reality Jewellery range and now Lauren’s new perfume. Last year, I was even seen on TV in an episode of RHOC at Lauren’s perfume launch. Since the launch, Lauren’s perfume Number One by Lauren Stone has become a hit, and as I have my own bottle, I had to share with you just how beautiful it is.

Number One by Lauren Stone Eau de Parfum

Number One by Lauren Stone Eau de Parfum

Number One by Lauren Stone Eau de Parfum

Number One by Lauren Stone Eau de Parfum

Packaged in a sleek, matte black box with gold detailing, with an embossed flower just like the one Lauren has tattooed on her back, the Eau de Parfum was originally supposed to be called Tattooud, playing on the name of one of the main ingredients. The bottle inside the box looks incredibly luxurious; heavy but with a sleek and minimalistic style. It does remind me of the offerings from Jo Malone Intense and Bella Bellissima but with a more opulent feel. Black and gold will always be a success for me. It looks expensive and feels expensive. The flacon is a sturdy black glass with a gold cap and very minimalist labelling. Although modern in design, there is a certain element of glamour from many years ago, very old Hollywood that is reminiscent of the bottles I used to see on dressing tables as a child.

The fragrance within the bottle is very unique, with a blend of notes that class Number One by Lauren Stone as a spicy oriental fragrance. The top notes are quite zesty with lemon heading to the forefront. When I spray this on my skin, I liken this to a sharp summers day. It’s almost quite grassy but then warms into heart notes of rose, ginger, saffron and aromatic lavender. The warming blend of the heart notes overtakes the zesty lemon and the fragrance transforms into a totally different scent after around 5 minutes of wear. It closes with the most divine blend of Oud and musk with amber and sandalwood giving the woody scent that I love in an oriental fragrance. The amber notes give a creamy warmth that is indescribable in terms of how it develops onto my skin. It’s a fragrance that needs to be worn to get it’s true potential on the skin.

In terms of longevity, it’s a solid fragrance and doesn’t disappear off the skin and stays even longer when sprayed on my clothes. I would average a good 6 hours on my skin before I’ve topped it up and I feel that any more than two sprays would be too much. Rich, extravagant and sensuous, it’s the epitome of a spicy oriental blend and I adore it.

Number One by Lauren Stone is available exclusively at Hoopers Wilmslow and online at Lauren Stone, where a 100ml is £120.

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After having a few tough weeks with my skin, I had to strip it back to basics and use a minimal amount of product until I had combated the issues. After finding that my old faithful Clarins products have been a god send, I’ve been able to add more products into my routine to tackle the concerns that I have had. Although I haven’t been flying lately, my skin has still been feeling a tad dehydrated in certain areas, and the medication has definitely dried me out. Even though I’ve been running a basic routine, I do love to use acid based products to keep my skin smooth and exfoliated. I’ve pulled together a handful of products that I have been adding back into the regime; some gentle and some with a bit more oomph to give me glowing, healthy skin and will share these over the next few posts.

Introducing Dr Barbara Sturm Skincare

Introducing Dr Barbara Sturm Skincare

To tackle the dehydration, I’ve been using two products from the Dr Barbara Sturm range. New to Space NK, I had the pleasure of having a consultation with Dr Sturm, who has advised that I need to hydrate my skin with the Dr Barbara Sturm Face Cream and Dr Barbara Sturm Eye Cream. The range does include products including Hyaluronic Acid Serum and SPF 50 drops, which I really want to try out next. The first thing I noticed about Dr Sturm was just how incredible her skin was. Void of makeup, she explained how the whole range was designed for maximum results without having to use a lot of different products. I am going against her words, as I have been using more products but I will blame this on not having the full collection in my possession! The ingredients of each product have been used with a great understanding of the skins cells and anti ageing, to strengthen, protect, detoxify and nourish the skin. The products are that gentle that they can be used on sensitive skin and she even uses the cream on her young daughters skin.

For the last few weeks of using the Dr Barbara Sturm, I have noticed a huge change in the elasticity of my skin. My problem dehydrated areas are across my jaw line and under and around my eye contour. Both creams feel like they are packed full of water, not that they are watery in consistency but they have that great moisture feeling when applied to the skin. I’m using the normal cream, although a rich version is available. I feel that it has an anti inflammatory property to it, as my skin feels so soothed and calm after each use. The eye cream is my favourite of the two, and as I’m a bit of a bugger with using eye cream and quite often I forget, I quite like to treat my eyes of an evening. As a contact lens wearer, I do suffer with some dryness around my eyes if I have been wearing lenses for several hours for the day, which leads to itchiness and irritation. The red rimmed eyes that I have been so used to have since been replaced with bright, clear and hydrated skin that looks visibly lifted.

The science within the creams is very apparent and although I find that when testing skincare, that it can take up to four weeks before I start seeing results, I did notice a lot of change in as little as ten days. The price is on the higher side, but with the little amount of product that I have to use, and how well it works, I would have no hesitation in repurchasing. After all, it is your face and to me, once mine starts to go, then I have nothing left!

If you’re near Space NK, please do have a look at the range. Just trying it on your hand will show you just how good the creams are. I’m a Dr Barbara Sturm convert and I have no regrets!

*Contains PR Samples and Affiliate Links

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Over the last few weeks, I’ve been thoroughly enjoying not wearing much make up. Those who have said that it brings your skin back to life weren’t wrong, however I’ve needed to keep an eye on my skin due to the amount of medication that I’m on. It has really taken a toll on my skin, and I’ve noticed that over the last eight weeks that I’ve been getting some unsightly lumps and bumps that I can only attribute to having a reaction to what I’ve had to take. Over a few posts, I’m going to share the products that I have been using in a very simple routine with some added extras to combat certain skin issues. The basis of my skincare has been from Clarins, a brand that I hold in high esteem to combating many of my skin concerns, and have done for several years.

Stripping my skincare right back has probably been the hardest thing for me to do in ages, as I am terrible for using a plethora of products to give me the healthy, glowing and clear skin that I desire. One good thing that has come from this is that I have discovered a product that has ultimately repaired my skin and given me a much needed respite from sensitivity and the after effects of having sensitive skin. The wonder product that I’m referring to is the Clarins Sensitive Skin Beauty Repair, £43 for 15ml. A pricey little treatment but my god, I cannot tell you just what this elixir has done to help. Packaged in a pump action bottle, one or two pumps are enough for the whole face. When applying it, it feels like it’s cooling my whole face down, removing redness and soothing irritation. I see this as an emergency treatment and I don’t use it every day, but I save it for times of need when I have a kind of first-aid situation. For my situation, I used it every other day for around two weeks and since then I’ve only needed to add it into my routine around once or twice a week or whenever I feel my skin flaring up. I had some unusual lumps under my jaw line that I can only link back to an allergic reaction of some sort, and a week it was like it had never happened. I do think it’s a must for every beauty cupboard.

Back to Basics with Clarins

Back to Basics with Clarins

Back to Basics with Clarins

Back to Basics with Clarins

Continuing with a sensitive skin regime, I’ve been wearing the Clarins Gentle Day Cream, £40 for 50ml, both morning and night. As I’ve only been wearing makeup on average once a week, my skin is feeling nourished enough to use a light moisturiser at night without having any adverse effects. It’s extra gentle and does work really well in conjunction with the Skin Beauty Repair. The cream does soothe skin irritation and reduce redness whilst hydrating and nourishing my skin. Although it feels a lot thicker than my usual day cream, the Kiehls Ultra Facial, it actually sinks into the skin without leaving any residue or greasiness. On the odd occasions that I have worn makeup, I’ve been able to wear it over the top of the Clarins Day Cream without my foundation sliding all over my face, which to me, speaks volumes.

Last year, Clarins brought out a range of Booster drops to add an extra oomph to your skincare. The Booster drops are available in Detox, Energy and Repair, and with my skin being in the state that it’s in, Clarins Repair Booster Drops, £30 for 15ml, are the ideal boost for my day cream. In the same packaging as the Radiance Booster Drops, which I absolutely love, the Repair Booster drops have been targeting my damaged skin to bring it back to life. A drop or two mixed into my moisturiser each more gives added reduction to any redness, irritation and discomfort. My skin has honestly never felt or looked better.

Although stripping back my skincare has been tough, it’s been a welcome change to only have to use a minimal amount of product. I know exactly where I’m up to with things and it’s making it a lot easier to see how I am reacting when I do add new products into the routine. After letting my skin settle, I’ve started to add some acids back for tackle other issues which I will be giving you an insight into in the next week or so.

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As you are aware, I am a total perfume addict and even at the last count of over 100 bottles of fragrance, I can’t help but want to add more. I do wear them a lot, and they don’t just sit on the shelf looking pretty, so when one runs out, I will be replacing it with one of these gorgeous smelling fragrances. At the moment, I’m really feeling the citrusy blends and I’ve found some really beautiful fragrances lately; some from my favourite brands, and some that are so luxury, that it would take me an age to save up for them.

I do love Jo Malone, so the Lime Basil and Mandarin has gone straight on my list. Peppery basil and white thyme with zesty limes, it’s a gorgeous fragrance and one that I wish I had picked up sooner. It’s a lot different to the more subtle scents of Silk Blossom and Plum Blossom that I’ve been wearing as of late.

When I came across the Shay and Blue Blood Oranges Eau de Parfum, I was blown away at the intensity of the orange. Rich and vibrant, the orange really is the centre of the perfume but the subtle woody musk settles on the skin and smells like a new leather coat. Truly wonderful.

Luxury Fragrance Wishlist Jo Malone Lime Basil Mandarin

Luxury Fragrance Wishlist Shay and Blue Blood Oranges

Luxury Fragrance Wishlist Acqua Di Parma

It’s taken me a long time to appreciate the beauty of the Acqua di Parma fragrances and one that has really stood out to me lately is the Gelsomino Nobile. Sparkling Italian Mandarin and pink pepper open up the fragrance until heart notes of jasmine and orange blossom shine through before closing on cedar wood and musk. So beautiful.

Whenever I pop in Space NK, I always spray myself liberally with the Diptyque Philosykos perfume. I still haven’t got round to purchasing this incredible fresh scent however I picked up Eau De Sens instead. I must admit that I don’t even look at other Diptyque scents because I want the Philosykos so much, but Eau De Sens is a captivating blend of orange blossom, juniper berry and patchouli, and it[‘s really stood out to me. Maybe I need to change my wishlist?

When I first smelt the Charlotte Tilbury Scent of a Dream fragrance, I was transported back to my childhood with the fragrance that evokes memories that I can’t pin point. Old fashioned is the word I used to describe it, yet I don’t mean it in a derogatory way. It’s Old Hollywood, classic and sophisticated with an opening of lemon, peach, mandarin and black pepper. It’s the kind of fragrance that you expect to be dispensed from one of those old perfume bottles with the pump spray.

Luxury Fragrance Wishlist Diptyque Eau de Sens

Luxury Fragrance Wishlist Charlotte Tilbury Scent of a Dream

Luxury Fragrance Wishlist Clive Christian No1 Feminine

Luxury Fragrance Wishlist Clive Christian No1 Feminine

Whilst browsing in Selfridges, I was introduced to Clive Christian, which is the most expensive perfume in the world. I was guided through the scent range and had the opportunity to try out each and every fragrance from the brand. There are two that I now have my heart set on yet they are very expensive for the privilege of owning them. The Clive Christian Noble VII Cosmos Flower first stopped me in my tracks with its sensual pink pepper, mandarin, amber, caramel and cocoa blend, before I tried the Clive Christian No 1 Feminine Perfume. Peach, lemon and mandarin, blended with a heart of ylang ylang, iris and rose, before the base of tonka, amber, musk and Madagascan vanilla settle onto the skin. I was so impressed with the No 1 Feminine, until I smelt the Masculine version. As with all the other citrus blends, the masculine citrus perfume was actually a bit more appealing to me than the feminine. I walked away having mentally spent over £1000 on three perfumes.

Expensive taste and lemonade money is how my Mum would describe it, but I will have one of these new fragrances very soon! What’s on your wishlist?

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My Too Faced journey started way back in 2005 when I was living in Mallorca. I’d been doing some shopping and came across the now legendary Too Faced Lip Injection. I remember that sharp cinnamon burn and having the fattest pillowy looking lips I’ve ever seen. Too Faced was really difficult to get hold of back in the UK, and I went for years without getting any Too Faced loving until it was sold in Boots, before moving to Debenhams and now Selfridges are an official stockist. Luckily, I’ve also had numerous opportunities to head to the States to cure my addiction and I’m doing quite well in my quest to collect it all. After picking up the Too Faced Peanut Butter and Jelly palette in Ulta last year, I’ve since managed to get hold of the Sugar Pop and Cat Eyes palette, which are perfect for taking away. The Too Faced Natural Eyes palette was on my list but I couldn’t justify yet another palette of neutrals in a mix of shimmer and matte until I saw the Too Faced Natural Matte palette. Nine shadows of matte neutrals? How could I not need this!

The Too Faced small palettes come in so handy. A look in a box, in a sturdy tin with a decent sized mirror and nine shades, the Too Faced Natural Matte palette is ticking every box for me. Aside from being matte, the shades are exactly what I would pick when it comes to making a personalised palette; warm toned peaches, oranges and browns. Although I do love to experiment with colours but I always fall back to those neutral hues that are so easy to wear. As Too Faced think of everything, they have split the palette up into three sections of easy to wear looks; Day, Classic and Fashion as well as adding in the iconic How To Glamour guide for those who need some inspiration or step by step help to creating pretty eye looks.

Too Faced Natural Matte Palette

Too Faced Natural Matte Palette

Too Faced Natural Matte Palette

Too Faced Natural Matte Palette

Too Faced Natural Matte Palette

Starting with the Day shades, I did find the colour Heaven a little bit chalky on my skin tone. This does often happen with lighter colours on my skin which is why I don’t use very light and white shades very often but it makes a great base or highlight colour. It’s a slightly yellow toned beige so it’s great for giving an even base to work on. Cashmere Bunny is a beautiful warm toned taupe, which I believe is a staple in an eyeshadow collection. It can be used for a transition shade or of you don’t want the dramatic look, a crease colour. Sexspresso is a warm toned dark brown and will be ideal for deepening the outer V or adding intensity to a smoky eye.

In the Classic shades, the colours are just what I want in a palette. These are actually the shades that attracted me to the palette in the first place and together they make such a pretty look. Lace Teddy is a warm peachy shade which doesn’t run as chalky on my skin as Heaven. Strapless is a rosy, warm toned medium brown and can we just take a minute to bask in it’s beauty. It’s amazing! Risqué is a dark brown that runs slightly cooler toned than the other browns and is a great shade for defining the eyes.

Fashion also has some beautiful shades; Nudie is a yellow toned light taupe, whilst Honey Butter is a medium orange-brown and Chocolate Cookie is a medium dark warm toned brown. The shades in this line do remind me of the Peanut Butter shade in Peanut Butter and Jelly but they’re not even close when side by side.

As with all Too Faced shadows, there are some colours that perform better than others, and some of the shades did take a bit of work to get an even swatch. The bottom row was the best out of the three rows, with the lighter colours coming across as chalky however I’ve still been able to work with this palette with ease and minimal fallout. It’s just one of those palettes that you need for a matte neutral eye, and I adore it.

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Being stuck in doors has taken a huge toll on my skin as of late. With this awful weather that we are having for April – I mean snow showers and 2 degree temperatures, the central heating has been on so much lately. My skin is so dry and I feel just grubby in general. That kind of feeling where you need a full body exfoliate to remove the top layer of skin, you know what I mean. The Body Shop have absolutely nailed it with their newest collection, designed for sensitive skin to help soothe dryness, dehydration, redness and irritation. Not only that, but it’s also scented with two of my favourite scents; honey and sweet almond. The Body Shop Almond Milk and Honey collection has been rocking my world, so much so that I’m about to place an order for a top up!

The Body Shop Almond Milk and Honey collection comprises of seven bath and body products, with cult products such as the body butter that we all love from The Body Shop. I have been trialling the hand soap and hand cream, the shower cream and the body butter. As with all products from The Body Shop, the formulations contain no colourants, petroleum and mineral oil, and they’re all dermatologically tested. The almond milk used in the products is organic whilst the almond oil is a community trade from Spain. Honey is sourced from Ethiopia whilst other natural ingredients such as Shea Butter and Soybean oil can be found in some products. I must also mention that with the collection being designed for sensitive skin, hypoallergenic fragrance has also been used.

The Body Shop Almond Milk and Honey Collection

The Body Shop Almond Milk and Honey Collection

The Body Shop Almond Milk and Honey Collection

The Body Shop Almond Milk and Honey Collection

The Body Shop Almond Milk and Honey Collection

I never use bars of soap, and I have always preferred to use a pump liquid hand soap so it’s been quite an experience to try out the Almond Milk and Honey Cleansing Bar. I must admit that I don’t like dried soap sat on the side of the sink but the soap bar is just so beautiful. I have memories of bars of soap drying my hands out even though they stated that they were hydrating and soothing, yet this one doesn’t and that tight feeling doesn’t occur at all. Combined with the Almond Milk and Honey Calming and Protecting hand cream, it’s an absolute perfect pairing. I’ve had the hand cream by my bed and as I’m spending a lot of time on it, or in it, I have been using it frequently. My hands are in such good condition at the moment that I actually can’t believe how soft and supple they feel. I do suffer with dry and peeling skin around my nail beds and even that looks better. I’m so pleased.

The Almond Milk and Honey Shower Cream has been an absolute delight to use. With it being a small sized bottle, I only got a handful of showers out of it – don’t judge, I like a foamy shower! Luxurious lather and a divine scent, just like the soap, it didn’t dry my skin out. For a surge of added moisture, the Almond Milk and Honey Body Butter is probably my favourite. At one point in my life I had a plethora of body butters in all the colours of the rainbow with every fragrance made. Addicted? Possibly! With my old favourites being the Coconut, the Mango and the Shea Butter, the Almond Milk and Honey fits right in with the scents that are delicious but aren’t too overpowering. I love the body butters from The Body Shop, so I will definitely be picking up a large sized.

For sensitive or dry skin, I think the Almond Milk and Honey would be such a good addition to any skin routine. I’m also looking forward to trying out the body scrub to bring my skin back to its full potential. The full range of Almond Milk and Honey is at The Body Shop now.

*Contains PR Samples

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Just how late to the party am I? When common sense prevailed and I didn’t cave and get the Too Faced Born This Way foundation and concealer, I felt really proud of myself that I could work through my 138 other foundations and concealers first. The urge and struggle was real. Every single time I saw it on social media or someone talking about it, I felt a tiny stab in the heart that I didn’t have. Why didn’t I have it?! So, although I already had 138 other foundations and concealers, I caved. And do you know what? It’s probably the best thing I’ve put on my face.

I have never tried Too Faced foundation before and although Amazing Face seems to have been discontinued to make way for Born This Way, I was totally clueless as to which shade to get. I’m usually straight down the middle of medium beige, however when I used Findation – one of the best foundation matching websites, it brought me to the shade Sand. I had my misgivings, especially as if I’ve been using shades that may be slightly lighter or darker than my usual, it makes Findation bring up some really questionable choices. Anyway, I took a gamble on Born This Way Natural Beige foundation and Light Medium Concealer. When they arrived, I did a quick hand swatch and my heart sunk. The foundation was so orange toned on my hand, I didn’t know what to do except put it in the pile of things to photograph and come back to it later.

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation and Concealer

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation and Concealer

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation and Concealer

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation and Concealer

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation and Concealer

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation and Concealer

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation and Concealer

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation and Concealer

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation and Concealer

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation and Concealer

Later was a whole day. I couldn’t stay away from it. From the swatches, you can see just how dark the foundation is on my hand. Obviously my hand is a different colour to my face but it is such a big difference in how my shades of foundation look. Sitting at my vanity, I put a pumps worth of Born This Way foundation on my face and using my Iconic London Oval Brush, I buffed it into my skin. I couldn’t believe the colour match. It’s absolutely perfect. Going with my gut and knowing my skin, I knew I was a natural beige kinda gal and I’m totally not sure why it looks orange toned on my hand but on my face it’s totally amazing. Seamless, traceless and like skin, Born This Way gives a medium to full coverage in just one pump and it blends out beautifully. As it’s oil free, my skin looks like radiant and glowing skin but has enough umphh to cover imperfections and leave a smooth and clear face. The formulation does contain wonder ingredient coconut water, just like the Hangover Primer, which is a perfect pairing for a flawless base.

With the Born This Way Concealer, I chose Light Medium with the intention of using it on my blemishes as well as using it for that triangle of light underneath my eyes. It does err on the lighter side of a Light Medium shade which makes it perfect for under eye brightening and the coverage is insane. The concealer feels quite thin and liquid like to apply but it almost sets in place but looks totally undetectable. I’m feeling like I can’t portray just how amazing this stuff is. Bright eyed and blemish free, I have been wearing this combo each time I have put makeup on. After having gone from a full coverage lover, to a very sheer based kinda gal, I would have said that a medium to full coverage wouldn’t have been my kind of thing right now, but I love it. It’s so light and so fresh, and I love how my skin just feels and looks like skin. Maybe it’s the coconut water? Maybe I was just Born This Way!

Have you tried the Too Faced Born This Way foundation and concealer? If not, why not?!

*Contains PR Samples

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Do any of you have issues with boxes? Like gift boxes and keeping makeup in boxes so it doesn’t get damaged? I have both and when tidying up my beauty storage, I was a little bit concerned with just how many Jo Malone boxes I have hoarded. Now, they are good sizes so they can be used to keep things inside, but 14 gift boxes? Anoushka, you are ill! The most recent box that arrived at my house contained two limited edition fragrances that have been re-released as they are just so beautiful. The Jo Malone Blossom Belle collection is a travel retail exclusive and I’m so happy I’ve managed to get hold of two of them; Plum Blossom and my old fave Silk Blossom.

The Jo Malone Blossom Belle Collection comprises of three scents, Plum Blossom, Osmanthus Blossom and Silk Blossom which have all been released previously. Plum Blossom was first launched in 2012, before being repromoted in the Blue Skies and Blossom collection of 2015, alongside Sakura Cherry Blossom and Osmanthus Blossom. Silk Blossom was originally launched in 2014 with the flacon featuring silk tassels, of which I couldn’t resist and had to get one.

Jo Malone Blossom Belle Collection

Jo Malone Blossom Belle Collection

Jo Malone Blossom Belle Collection

Jo Malone Blossom Belle Collection

Out of the two, Silk Blossom is my favourite and as soon as I opened it, I wondered why I hadn’t reached for it in such a long time. Maybe because it was a limited edition and I was scared of running out as I only had a 30ml bottle? Maybe. The new designed bottles are elegant and fun with their pearlescent caps and matching coloured ribbons. Green for Osmanthus, purple for Plum and pink for silk blossom. Silk Blossom hasn’t changed formula or scent since the original and although it is one of the most delicate and lightest scents that I own, I can’t get enough of the unusual blend of white pepper, bergamot and sweet apricots. Tart yet it brings out the delicate blend of silk blossom, jasmine and rose before settling down into warming moss and heliotrope. It may seem silly, but it smells pink. It’s just that perfect fragrance for me.

Plum Blossom is very much a new fragrance for me, and I have not even so much smelt it before although I was aware of its existence in the previous collection. I wanted the Sakura Cherry Blossom so badly from that collection! Plum Blossom is a woody musky floral fragrance that does come across quite sharp on my skins chemistry. It’s a very simple blend of plum blossom, sandalwood and musk, that does warm up to quite an intriguing scent however I find it to work best for me when layered with Nectarine Blossom and Honey, to remove that musky base.

As mentioned before, the Blossom Belle is a travel exclusive and will only be available from World Duty Free. I’m unsure if they are set for release onto the high street, so if they are fragrances that you really really need, then I think it’s the perfect excuse to be booking a holiday. Just saying!

*Contains PR Samples

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