Ahh, just how how quickly the warm weather has swept into a chilly breeze, grey skies and the need to put the central heating on. My house feels really cold and I’m finding that my only solace is coming from fluffy blankets and socks. My skin is also feeling the effects. First of all, it gets blasted with air con at work, and now when I’m at home, it’s being hit with the dry and warm rooms in my house. I have needed instant hydration and I have found a product that is helping my skin look and feel instantly hydrated. The Garnier 3 in 1 Aloe Water Jelly is a multi use product, which has been injecting life back into my face.
Thirsty skin, whether it be dry, dehydrated or just suffering the after effects of being in the air conditioning and central heating will all be prime examples for the Garnier Aloe Jelly. A translucent jelly, packed full of hyaluronic acid and organic aloe vera which we know has healing and soothing properties.
As a day care product, the jelly is light enough to be used under foundation and as a primer. A little is needed otherwise it does tend to feel quite tacky on the skin, however that’s not a bad thing if you are using foundation over the top. With the lack of makeup wearing I have been doing lately, I have been leaving my skin to drink up the jelly throughout the day and applying it more than once.
As a night care product, it works in exactly the same way however I do feel like I need something more for my skin to cope throughout the night. It does work with serums and facial oils for an extra boost but I couldn’t use it on it’s own.
My favourite way to use the Garnier Jelly has to be as a mask. A thick layer of jelly is applied to my face, which I leave for around 10-15 minutes. I pat off any excess with a towel or muslin cloth before leaving the residue to soak into my skin. Using this method once or twice a week, I have seen a difference in the plumpness of my skin and how much fuller my finer lines seem.
I’m pretty impressed overall with the Garnier Jelly and I do keep seeing it go on 50% off offers in Superdrug and Boots. It’s well worth picking up should you need to address your thirsty skin!
As promised in last weeks blog post, I wanted to give you a full run down of the fabulous Pixi Fairy Lights and the new loves in my life, the Gossamer Duos. Pixi Beauty has been featuring quite heavily within my make up and skincare regimes lately and whilst some products have been with me for several years, others are new releases and new into my life. I’m extremely lucky to work so closely with one of brands that I absolutely love and it does mean that I get to try the new products as soon as they hit the shelves. When I was shown the new Pixi Fairy Lights, you can imagine just how excited I was about these incredible liquid glitter shadows.
In five shades, the Pixi Fairy Lights promise a show stopping colour whilst the chamomile and rose infused formulation nourish the lid. From sparkling silver to burnt copper, each shade is very wearable and can be used for a dramatic lid or to add a touch of glimmer to the lid, inner corner or lower lash line.
Crystalline – iridescent silver diamond
Sun Ray – yellow gold
Rose Gold – shimmery pink gold
Bare Brilliance – pale champagne rose
Passion Light – rich copper bronze
Now of course there have been other liquid glitter eyeshadows released on the market, namely Stila, which I believe were the first brand to do such a shadow. To compare them would be quite difficult because in their own way, they are both very special. The Pixi Fairy Lights shadows perform beautifully. They glide on and the applicator gives precision application. They can be used as a sheer veil of shimmer, or built up to to an intense shock of metallic colour. The darker two shades are more difficult to build up an even layer of colour and do streak but it’s not a huge issue. They are comfortable to wear, easy to remove and the infused formula leaves the lids feeling soft and supple with no scratchy dryness from wearing a heavily glittered shadow. Crystalline and Bare Brilliance are the two shades that I have been reaching for the most, and I find them so versatile in what you can do with them.
For an incredible luminescence and a bright complexion the Pixi Glow-y Gossamer Duos are simply perfect. Two complementary shades within one compact, that can be used both wet and dry, and as a highlight or subtle all over glow. The powder is so silky, just like gossamer, and feels weightless on the skin. A cream based powder that diffuses easily across the skin, without settling into pores and brings a subtle touch of radiance to the high points of your face. It’s a truly beautiful highlighter and all four shades across the two palettes look gorgeous on my medium skin tone.
The two palette shades are Subtle Sunrise which contains a pale yellow gold and a golden rose, and Delicate Dew which holds a coral golden rose and a silver rose. All of the shades are subtle but can pack a punch if built up. I’m absolutely enamored with them both.
Changing up my style and look is something that occurs pretty frequently. If If I’m not dying my hair, I’m cutting it all of, wearing it in curls or poker straight. I’m actually in shock at just how much it has grown in the last 12 months and it’s sitting quite long past my shoulders. It’s also pink and purple right now. I’ve had a little play around with a new wig recently, and I’ve headed back to my babes at Hot Hair who have sorted me out with a new style. Hot Hair have been around for many years and cater for all. From hair extensions, half and full wigs and hair pieces with prices ranging from £15 to the incredible Black label wigs at an incredible £1300, there really is a huge amount of choice.
After spotting the Mint To Be Wig by Hairdo, I just couldn’t resist the gorgeous colour. I did have my eye on it for such a long time before taking the plunge, and at the moment, it’s currently in the sale for £82.50. Although it is a synthetic piece, you can use heated products on it, however it had a wonderfully flippy, volumised style to start with.
I have taken the scissors to my wig ever so slightly to cut the fringe in a little more, and I’ve also give more of a side part than it sitting in the centre. I do love the freedom that you have with a wig in that you are changing your look but you can still tailor it to your preference. I also feel that my next cut may have to incorporate a full fringe because it looks so cute.
I had a lot of fun creating this eye look and it was actually really simple to do. Going to back to one of trusty palettes, the Urban Decay Full Spectrum, I am a bit gutted that you cannot get this anymore. Compared to other bright palettes that are available, I find that Full Spectrum gives a pop of colour but isn’t that in your face kind of colour shadows. Bearing in mind that not everyone wants Instagram eye makeup, but still want colour and variation. I have just got another brights palette in the form of Carnival by bPerfect and Stacey Marie MUA which is on another level of colour. The Urban Decay Full Spectrum to me is one of my go to’s for colours, quality and buttery smooth formulation that blends easily and is really easy to create looks that may be out of your comfort zone. I’ve used pinks and oranges for this look, with a slight touch of purple to deepen the crease, with shimmery orange tones to buff out.
On the lid, I used my NARS Soft Matte Concealer to cut out my crease and to give a flat smooth base, before laying on the absolutely beautiful Pixi Fairy Lights in Crystalline. In a way, they are somewhat like the Stila Magnificent Metals which I am so fond of, but I find the formulation of Pixi a little different. I am going to go into a bit further in a post coming up so keep an eye out! As always, I have used the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner which gives an intense black and super sharp wing with ease. For lashes, I have used the new Kiss Lashes Triple Push Ups in Bustier, which are a three layer lash with ultimate volume, length and curl. I adore them – they’re massive and perfect for my eye shape and I actually don’t feel like I have ginormous lashes on. To finish of my face, a quick dusting of the Benefit Gold Rush blusher before adding a few drops of the new Stila Magnificent Metals Highlighter in Monarch. Just like the Glitter and Glow shadows, the formulation give multi dimensional glitter and it a real wow factor. Don’t be scared of it, a little does go a long way for maximum drama and impact!
I do love creating these makeup looks and showing how the product looks on rather than just on a swatch so if there is anything that you would like to see, let me know! I’m so excited to share the new bPerfect palette with you soon!
Festival season is drawing to a close however the one event of the year that I look forward to like it’s Christmas is literally just days away. I’m talking about Manchester Pride and the four days of full on partying and being my fabulous self. I love the outfits that I choose to wear, the colours that I go for and of course, the makeup. I spend so much time on my makeup and anything goes. I’ve been playing with new products and having a practice run just in time for the big weekend and I’m pretty pleased with what I’ve come up with.
I have found a new beauty destination in Just My Look. A site that contains some fantastic makeup brands such as Ben Nye, Kryolan and Mehron, as well as indie brands such as Jolie Beauty. Whilst browsing the site, I spotted the Jolie Beauty 35T Vivacious palette as well as two face products that I needed in my life. Free delivery meant that my new products landed on my doorstep in just a few days and I could get stuck in to create magic on my face.
I haven’t tried Jolie Beauty before now, and although I’ve followed them on Instagram for an age, it has also taken me so much time to try the products. The Vivacious Palette has all of the bright colours that you could need, alongside a selection of ultra shimmers, glitters and neon shadows. I did find that the neon shades were quite staining and the neon pink was the only shade from the palette that made my eyes feel quite sore, however it was minimal and this has happened before with a Morphe palette. I think it is something in the ingredients that doesn’t agree me with. That being said, the brights are bright without having to work with a white underneath, the blend perfectly and don’t go muddy and the glitters are relatively easy to work with.
On my skin I used the Jolie Beauty Uniglow 24k Gold Elixir and I legit felt like I should have been on a Instagram Video dripping serum across my face. The serum is really lovely and gives great hydration with an ethereal glow. Usually I would avoid putting an oil on my skin prior to makeup application, but with the Uniglow, I was really surprised in how it felt more like a dry oil and didn’t leave my skin feeling at all greasy. I was very tempted to purchase the Farsali oil but at £16.99, the Uniglow Elixir looks to be the same and is a fraction of the price.
I’m an absolute sucker for anything with a unicorn on, it seems. So, the Jolie Beauty Unistrobe Liquid Illuminator dropped straight into my basket. I chose the shade Deity as the other darker shades were similar to the Iconic London Illuminating drops that I own, however in comparison, they are very different. The Unistrobe drops are a lot thicker and less metallic, but they have a great sheen to them that catches the light to give such a beautiful glow. A tiny amount is needed, and I prefer to buff them into the skin with a damp beauty blender for that elusive lit from within glow.
A festival look is not complete without glitter face makeup, and The Gypsy Shrine have made it so easy for the ultimate in a glitter face by developing a genius product; the Gypsy Shrine Peel Off Glitter Glue. Even with just playing around with the glitter, being able to take it all off in one go is not only highly satisfying, but great for post party makeup removal. Using Peel Off Glitter Glue was really easy. I used a synthetic flat brush to brush on the glue, before adding Dark Unicorn chunky glitter and Unicorn Tears loose glitter. A final coat of Peel Off Glitter Glue across the top not only set it all together, but gave a barrier so it didn’t come loose.
I’m really pleased with how this practice run came out so I’m really looking forward to seeing what I can create on the big day!
There is nothing worse that going through airport security, panicking about your liquids and the size of your perfume before getting on board that flight and for your lovely perfume to leak with the air pressure. This was a huge issue that I used to have when flying and although I tried to use atomisers and samples of perfume, I always felt that I was compromising on not only my favourite scent, but the volume of fragrance that I would have with me. It’s no secret that one of my favourite fragrances is Flowerbomb and has been since around 2006. No matter how many other fragrances I have introduced into my life, I still fall back to my love. This year sees the release of Viktor & Rolf On the Go featuring the best selling fragrances from Viktor & Rolf in handy travel sized form.
On the Go is available in Flowerbomb, Bon Bon and Spicebomb for the males in your life. A luxurious travel sized spray bottle and three 18ml refill sprays are wrapped up within the iconic packaging of each fragrance. The spray bottles themselves are absolutely gorgeous. They feel expensive, look very sophisticated and I love the attention to detail with the Viktor & Rolf wax seal on the top of the spray.
Not only are the sprays perfect for travelling, they are ideal for people like myself who literally chuck everything into my handbag. Now, I can imagine that the sleek metal cases will get dented but I would prefer this option against carrying around an £80 bottle of perfume that has the opportunity of getting smashed, the wax seal tag snapping off and the delicate metal work being scratched to death.
I have previously written up my thoughts on Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb and Viktor & Rolf Bon Bon so I won’t delve into fragrance notes here but please do check out the original posts. The On the Go sets are such a good idea, and I feel that I need to book myself on a flight just so that I can make the most of my travel friendly spray!
Which is your favourite from Flowerbomb and Bon Bon? Let me know in the comments!
Over the many, many years of using Benefit Cosmetics, I have found that I have come to love several of their products so much, that they are always on my repurchase list. I am an avid fan of Precisely, My Brow. My contour relies on the Hoola Contour Stick and I have fallen head over heels for the Gold Rush blusher that not only gives the perfect pink nectar flush but smells incredible as well.
I received a surprise gift from Harvey Nichols which contained two of the brand new Benefit Cosmetics Makeup Sets. Two sets that are not only perfect for me but also contain some of my favourite products from the range. A collection of four sets are available in Harvey Nichols; The Beachlorette set, Snow Doll set, Hippie Go Lucky set and Parisian Pin Up set, of which I have the latter two. Priced at £28.50, each custom set contains four deluxe minis each wrapped up in a limited edition mini makeup pouch. They would make such perfect presents for birthdays and Christmases, or just as a present to yourself .
From the two sets, I am most drawn to the Parisian Pin Up, with the envision of being a sleek, and chic Parisian styled princess with glowing skin, perfect brows and thick full lashes. Lashes courtesy of Bad Gal Bang, the latest mascara release from Benefit. A mascara that has had its fair share of critics but I quite like it. It does exaggerate everything in length and volume which is everything I look for in a mascara.
I have never seen the deluxe size Ka-Brow before, and I am so happy to have one in my possession. It’s one of my favourite brow products from Benefit, and it lasts all day. As a highlighter addict, you cannot go wrong with High Beam; a wonderful pink champagne shade that enhances every skin tone. The set finishes with a mini Gold Rush blush which retails for £12.50 alone. I have totally fallen for Gold Rush and since I purchased this on holiday, I have used it daily. The warm pink nectar blush is so flattering that it looks like a flush of happiness on your cheeks.
The Hippie Go Lucky set focuses on unleashing your inner flower power. Long luscious lashes, flawless smooth skin, and a lit from within glow. The mascara is the cult classic They’re Real, which has gained the title of being one of the UK’s best selling mascaras, known for false lash effect formulation. The POREfessional is another of my holy grail products and I love the smooth finish it gives. The soft focus highlight of Watt’s Up works perfectly alongside the soft focus finish of The POREfessional, and a natural makeup look is a dream with these two products. Finally, my blush of last summer, the mini Galifornia blush which not only smells like summer in a box, but has a wonderful golden coral pink shade that suits every skin tone.
I adore these mini products from the sets. Not only are they a great way to try some of Benefit’s top rated products but they come in so handy to keep in your handbag. As someone who is really trying to keep my handbag makeup bag to a minimum, I can’t tell you how pleased I am to be able to have all my products that I need with me, but without taking up all the space. You can get your Benefit sets from Harvey Nichols for £28.50.
Although we are expecting a heatwave in the next two weeks, I for one am so pleased that the weather has gone slightly cooler. This year, I have been experiencing the worst hayfever of my life. It’s really strange as to how it just develops and although I started with hayfever symptoms around 3 years ago, this year has been the worst. Thankfully, I have a secret weapon and it has made my life so much easier. After falling in love with the Feather & Down original range, I have fallen even deeper after trying the new Breathe Well products.
My hayfever symptoms have consisted of a constantly running nose, dry and itchy eyes that get swollen, sneezing and wheezing and a horrible cough. It’s felt like having the flu for 3 months and I cannot wait to see the back of this for some respite over the colder months. The only thing that I have found that has been relieving my symptoms is a hot bath filled with Feather & Down Breathe Easy Bath Essence.
Keeping the same original Feather & Down scent but with an added touch of menthol, Breathe Easy contains a blend of essential oils of eucalyptus, peppermint and tea tree. Combined with the Lavender and Chamomile, this is the most relaxing and delicately scented bath product that soothes me, whilst helping to open up my swollen sinuses. Sitting in a hot bath and breathing in this aroma not only helps me unwind, but assists in helping my breathing which in turn lets me sink into a deep nights sleep. For an added touch, Feather & Down also have a Breathe Easy pillow spray which is just divine.
Considering that I am usually quite the bath product snob and go for my Laura Mercier products as first choice, they have literally been cast to one side for Feather & Down. If you are suffering with hayfever or have children who you need to wind down before bed then I cannot recommend this brand enough. It isn’t on offer at the moment, but I do keep seeing it fall into the 3 for 2 offer, and I would recommend the Pillow Spray and the Melting Shower Cream for those times when a bath is not needed.
OK guys and gals! I’m introducing to you today a brand that is new to me and that has recently come into my life. Rodin Olio Lusso, the brainchild of Linda Rodin all started with a beauty elixir oil made from essential oils. From there, the brand has expanded to give not only gorgeous skincare but Instagram worthy makeup such as the Mermaid collection that I am sharing with you today. Each product with the Rodin Olio Lusso range has been designed to have an instant and lasting effect, and I can immediately see my new glow from space. Exclusive to Liberty London, Rodin Olio Lusso is totally swoonworthy.
Being that person who just loves the highlight and illuminating, I was over the moon to try the limited edition Mermaid collection. A small collection made up from just five products, each one focusing on delivering a stunning glow with an indulgent, luxury feel. It certainly has felt very indulgent using products of this quality and even as a makeup obsessive, I’ve found that the Rodin Olio Lusso products feel incredibly special and unlike other brands that I have tried.
The Rodin Olio Lusso Mermaid Luxury Illuminating Liquid is somewhat of a gem of a formulation with oil as the base. It glides across the skin, with the illuminating liquid giving a subtle glow. It’s certainly not an in your face kind of glow, but more of that lit from within glow. As the base is oil, it leaves skin feeling incredibly soft and smooth, and the product doesn’t feel sticky or tacky. I have been using this on my shoulders, collarbone and legs for the most gorgeous sheen.
Everyone who knows me, knows that highlighters are my weakness and the Rodin Olio Lusso Mermaid Luxury Illuminating Powder has had me weak at the knees. The gel powder formulation takes you from a soft glow to an intense lustre with a radiance where you can only be described as glowing. Application is easy, whether you use a small domed brush or a large Kabuki such as the Rodin Luxury Kabuki Brush which diffuses the powder across the skin with ease. Made from cashmere fibres, this is one of the most luxurious brushes I have tried. I must admit that due to the beauty of the Illuminating powder, I am finding it really difficult to dig into it. The beautiful embossing on the powder is so detailed that I have visions of it ending up like my Chanel lace powder – loved but untouched.
For the first time trying Rodin Olio Lusso, I have been more than impressed. I can’t wait to try out the lipsticks and also share with you one the iconic product where Rodin started from. Have you tried the brand? What are your thoughts?
Ladies and Gentlemen of the class of ’99 Wear Sunscreen
Suncreen and SPF are very important to me. I have been a bit of a stickler for ensuring that I have SPF on, more importantly when I am in tropical destinations. I have been a fool over the years and been quite lax with SPF, choosing to use carrot oil over a high factor. The damage has been done. Pigmentation, moles and a chest that will resemble a Hermes Birkin if I don’t continue to cover up with a high protection. Being silly is part of life, as is ageing, but preventing the early onset of this is key. Not only that, but being protected against the risk of skin cancer is also high on my priorities. For this, I will only recommend a high factor to wear as well as a fabulous hat to protect from the sun. I have pulled together some fab products for the sun to keep you safe and protected against the rays as well as enhancing your natural tan.
Starting with the high factor, I’ve been recently introduced to Evy Technology. A brand that focuses on the SPF being absorbed into the epidermis as opposed to sitting on the surface of the skin. This protective barrier that it creates means that the suns harmful rays will be blocked out even deeper and will last up to 6 hours. The SPF 50 Suncreen Mousse makes a great base for other skincare products so you can layer, should you wish and as it’s suitable for face and body, it’s a great essential for summer. It can also be worn under makeup so whilst we are having this summer heat, it’s even easier to be protected from the suns rays. Although it is only a 100ml bottle, the expanding foam mousse inside definitely doubles the volume. I think I’m a convert to Evy Technology!
Hawaiian Tropic is that brand that everyone knows, and it’s the brand that instantly reminds me of summers abroad. The tropical scent is connected to so many memories. I used to use the swirled Hawaiian Tropic suncreen all the time, but I have now found an even nice cream. The Hawaiian Tropic Duo Defence Sun Lotion SPF 30 is a daily use sunscreen that contains an anti pollution layer and feels so luxurious on the skin. Again, it’s another product that has been perfect for the UK weather as well as being a high performing cream for more tropical climes.
The after sun care is as important to me as the sun care and I fall back to Hawaiian Tropic with the incredible body butter. Now, I have been known to use this when I’ve not even been in the sun because it smells so amazing. Historically, the Exotic Coconut has been my go to scent, however this year I have discovered the Hawaiian Tropic After Sun Body Butter in Lime Coolada. I am shook. It smells insane; zesty, tropical and good enough to eat. In addition to this, for a full on tropical vibe, a slick of the Hawaiian Tropic SPF30 Lip Balm, ensures that you are protected from head to toe. Nothing worse than burnt lips on holiday and it’s definitely an area that I have been caught out with before so I always use it now.
I have spoken about the Ideal World Zhuzh products before, but I had to drop them in this years recommendations. The Zhuzh Tan Accelerator has to be one of the best products I have used for intensifying tanning time. I mainly use this when sat in the UK sun, and a mild misting of the product over the skin gives it such a boost to develop my natural tan. As it stimulates melanin production, I have found that I start to turn a wonderful dark golden shade that is not normally easy to achieve with my skin tone unless I’ve been in the hot sun for a long period of time.
The second product from Zhuzh is my secret weapon in prolonging my tan, whether it be natural or a faux glow. The Zhuzh Tan Lock and Saver is a dry oil that has a brilliant 360 degree nozzle so I can get to the hard to reach areas. It keeps my skin feeling soft and supple, which in turn means that my tan stays in place with ease and also fades evenly. As it’s a dry oil, it also makes a great hair treatment to leave on overnight. You can’t beat a good multi use product!
This summer has been the hottest summer on record for years within the UK. After my trip to Bali, I really did believe that I had the most Vitamin D that I would be gain but I was wrong. I’ve even caught a slight tan from being sat in the sun and making full use of my balcony which rarely gets much use. It really has been a great summer. With the heat of the sun, comes the hot flashes and naturally glowing faced and I have really had to change up my makeup for a more mimimal face. The hardest thing about this is actually being bothered to wear it at all. I’ve put together my top picks of summer makeup must haves to see you through to Autumn.
If you have been reading my blog or following my social media lately, you will know that I have a huge love for the Bobbi Brown Vitamin Enriched Face Base. I literally cannot stop raving about it to everyone, and it makes such a difference to my makeup application. A hybrid primer/moisturiser that has an oil free and non greasy formulation, it sinks into the skin with ease and leaves a wonderfully soft base for foundation. I adore the citrus scent and how it makes my skin feel, with or without makeup.
A minimal makeup up base is enhanced with the Nudestix Nudies in Hey, Honey. I liberally apply this everywhere for a glowing, fresh faced look. Eyes, lips, cheeks, or buffed in all over. It’s such a light tinted balm that it isn’t overkill should you over apply. The handy brush in the bottom of the tube is also brilliant for buffing the product into the skin with ease. A real handbag essential.
When Benefit Cosmetics released Galifornia Blusher last summer, I didn’t think that they could ever top the peachy pink sunshine coral shade that makes me so happy. I was wrong. This years release, Benefit’s Gold Rush has ticked all of my boxes in terms of what I want from a blush. Golden pink in colour, smelling of the tropical sunshine and a finely milled powder that buffs into the skin with ease. This blush is so gorgeous. It’s neutral, but with a flush of colour that makes you look all coy and I love it. The golden overspray of the blush does lift off when you use it, but the flecks of gold remain throughout the powder to give a sheen across the cheeks. It’s quite pigmented so a big fluffy brush is perfect to diffuse the colour.
Each Summer I like to treat myself to one or two items from my favourite beauty brands summer collections. This year, I saw the Clarins Summer collection and went mad with excitement as it featured flamingos. You know how I love a flamingo or two. Not only is the Clarins Summer 2018 bronzer a very generously sized bronzer but it is made up of a harmony of bronze and peach shades to create a subtle shimmer glow. The powder itself is embossed with a flamingo, which obviously makes it very difficult for me to want to use it but when I have used it, I can confirm that the colour payoff and overall shade is gorgeous.
I’m having some huge issues with my eyes at the moment, so minimal makeup around my eyes is a must have. You know how hayfever and itching and scratched corneas don’t mix, well, yeah that. I’ve been using just one coat of mascara at the moment and the Pixi Beauty Large Lash Mascara. I love the brush on this as it’s big enough to grab all lashes yet still gives great control in coating them from root to tip. I have found that also not getting the under eye smudges and it’s so easy to remove.
A summer lip is a necessity for me, and it’s this time of year when I start reaching for the bright oranges and corals. Shades like Miss Loubi from Christian Louboutin Beauté are the kind of shades that I adore. The Louboutin lipstick is probably one of the most extravagant lipsticks I own but the colour is absolutely perfect. Plus, it comes with its own ribbon to wear as a necklace, and its presented in a keepsake box so that totally makes it worth every penny. In the Velvet Matte formula, this is one of the creamiest, non drying matte lipsticks I’ve tried. I think I need to get Bengali next.
A summer must have in beauty must contain brightly coloured nail polishes. A coral coloured pedicure and pink manicure just remind me of summer, and this cute travel exclusive set of the OPI Lisbon collection from World Duty Free is perfect for holiday. With six shades, the most difficult decision will be choosing which one to wear.
My final must have has to be the scent of my summer; Jo Malone Tropical Cherimoya. I picked this up on my way to Bali from World Duty Free and it is quite simply divine. Jo Malone have released the Tropical Cherimoya in 30ml and 100ml in limited edition neon green, pink and orange bottles. My only downside is that I bought the 30ml and didn’t buy 100ml. It smells of juicy pears, passion flower, Brazilian copahu resin and tonka bean and green cherimoya fruit. Literally, it’s summer in a spray.
Can you believe it? Anoushka has bought yet another highlighter palette. I have absolutely no regrets with this one as it the NARS Jetsetter Sun Hunter palette that is exclusive to travel retail. I was so pleased to see it in person when passing through World Duty Free at Manchester Airport back in May that I just couldn’t resist. I did have an alternative highlighter purchase lined up; the Givenchy Bouncy Highlighter, but it sadly wasn’t in stock so I am totally believing that fate played a hand in this chance meeting. The NARS Jetsetter Sun Hunter palette is absolutely gorgeous.
I adore NARS as a brand and I do think that some of the products that I use on a daily basis don’t get enough praise. From the Soft Matte Concealer to the Orgasm collection, each product is of a high quality with beautiful formulations. The Sun Hunter palette is no exception. Packaged in the sleek Travellers Exclusive ombre blue and silver outer, the cardboard packaging is concealing the gorgeous rose gold and orange case that contains three pressed powder shades. The shades on the case are simply named I, II and III. I is wet/dry highlighter in a warm gold shimmer, II is a Dual Intensity Blush in golden apricot shimmer and III is a Dual Intensity Blush in a reddish bronze shimmer.
As I do have a penchant for darker coloured highlighters, especially when I have a tan, I had not even considered that the shades could be blush shades. I must admit, I have fallen head over heels for shade III and I have been using it as a blush, highlight, eye shadow and pressed over lip gloss to give a shimmer finish. I really must try some more of the Dual Intensity range as so far I’m really impressed with the formulation.
Although I try and keep my highlighters on rotation, the NARS Jetsetter Sun Hunter has stayed firmly in place on my dressing table for me to use each day. I don’t think that my love for it is going to go away anytime soon. I think the palette was around £30 in World Duty Free however it isn’t showing on the website. If you are heading away on your holidays soon, you will have to make sure you have a look whilst duty free shopping.
Looking back at how my make up tastes have changed over the years does make me smile. I was a die hard MAC addict at one point, before moving on to Chanel, all day everyday. As time passes, I can see how I still am very much set in my ways in certain areas, but I am no longer pigeon holing myself to one particular brand these days. This means that I’ve made an effort to try new brands and products that I wouldn’t have done before and I’ve had some amazing results. At one point, I had never tried Bobbi Brown, until I fell in love with a seafoam green eyeshadow which was part of the Surf and Sand Summer 2014 collection. I never did buy that palette but it did open my eyes to a brand that had beautiful limited edition collections, and can’t live without products.
The Bobbi Brown Can’t Live Without collection is not a collection as such but a selection of products have that reached Holy Grail status as chosen by the customers and artists within Bobbi Brown. Having used these hero products, it is clear why they have been given cult classic status. What started off as a foray into the brand by trying a lipstick and the Vitamin Enriched Face Base has resulted in owning a full collection. The Vitamin Enriched Face Base is my absolute number one at the moment and I cannot get enough of it. A primer – moisturiser hybrid with an oil free, citrus scented, shea butter laden formulation, it creates a base for makeup whilst hydrating and cushioning the skin. Since using Face Base (and I’m not far off emptying my 2nd pot), my make up is lasting for such a long long time. It’s almost like it’s putting a veil between my skin and my base products so that they sit beautifully and set in place. If you only buy one item, this must be it as it has certainly changed my makeup for the better.
For a flawless foundation, I have been flitting between the Bobbi Brown Skin Long Wear Weightless Foundation and the Skin Foundation stick, both of which mimic skin to look like you aren’t wearing anything at all. The Long Wear Foundation is full coverage, gives 16 hours of wear and has a matte finish and second skin feel. I find that when you use to much product with the liquid foundation, it does go tacky on the skin so it’s better to apply a lesser amount and build up. It really does last all day and has been fighting my corner in this humid weather we have been having. The Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick is a medium to full coverage that feels even more lightweight than the liquid. I’ve been wearing Beige in both options, and there is a huge shade range of 31 shades to choose from.
I simply cannot believe that I have lived my life for so long without using a bisque corrector for my unsightly eye bags. Using my finger, a small amount of corrector under my eyes counteracts the blueness and gives the illusion of brighter, even under eyes. As I am using a small amount of product in a thin layer, I haven’t been experiencing creasing. I am also adding a thin layer of the Bobbi Brown Instant Full Cover Concealer over the top for an extra layer of brightening and evening out my skintone.
For a pop of colour on the cheeks and lips, I’ve been using the Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge in Pale Pink. I also have the Pretty Powerful pink shade as well as my holiday fave Fresh Melon. These pots of cream blush are gorgeous on the skin. Easy to blend, subtle and buildable, they are perfect for a natural and fresh look. When I need a little more than a subtle pop of colour on my lips, I’m switching to my summer shade of Sunset Orange from the Luxe Lip Colour range. Housed in a sleek gold case, the formulation is so creamy and hydrating and extremely comfortable to wear. The shade stains the lips and lasts for age. I love.
My day to day makeup consists of just three items these days; an eyebrow pencil, an eyeshadow stick and a slick of mascara. Starting by brushing up my brows to fluff them up, I’m using the Perfectly Defined Brow Pencil to add in colour and fill in any gaps. I really like the formula of this pencil as the waxy crayon grips hairs whilst the angled tip makes it easy to draw in fine hairs.
Using Truffle and Goldstone in the Long-Wear Cream Shadow Sticks have made my life so much easier when it comes to getting ready in the morning. The pencils glide onto the eye, and with a little blending round the edges, they set in place and do not move for a good 8 hours. They’re even a match for my oily eyelids which is saying something. I have had to switch over to a waterproof mascara during this ridiculously long hayfever season that we have been having, and I have found that the No Smudge Mascara has been saving my poor would be panda eyes. I wouldn’t use a waterproof mascara usually because I find them really difficult to remove, and as a contact lens wearer, I don’t want extra irritation to my eyes. The No Smudge mascara is actually really easy to remove with micellar water, and I also like how I can use it over any other mascara to make my lashes waterproof. Brilliant.
I totally enjoying my new found love for Bobbi Brown, and I will be forever grateful that I have found the Face Base. It has changed me! What are your fave BB products?
Antipodes is one of those brands that has been huge within the blogosphere over the last few years and has gained popularity from the pure, safe and natural formulations made in New Zealand. Containing premium ingredients, the nutrient rich skincare range has been developed. Of course, New Zealand has an environment like no other in the world, with clear rainfall, high sunshine hours and fertile land, and the ingredients used are second to none. In the interest of beauty and trying this much loved brand, I’ve tried a few items just to see how much they lived up to the hype. Spoiler – they do.
One of the top contenders that I was itching to try was the Aura Manuka Honey Mask. Suitable for all skin types, manuka Honey is one of those hero ingredients known for its anti inflammatory properties that hydrates and soothes. I don’t tend to get to blemishes, however should you be prone to them, then manuka honey as an ingredient is perfect for helping to clear the skin. The mask itself is a beautiful warm yellow cream that can be used as weekly or twice weekly treat. It’s my Friday evening treat and it leaves my skin feeling so soft and smooth, without any redness. It smells beautiful as well and I love the fact its in a tube. It makes so much more sense when it comes to applying it and I think this has to be my current fave mask of the moment.
I’m a big fan of multi masking as I don’t believe that one mask does fit all. I have using the Aura Mask however for a skin brightening boost, the Antipodes Halo Mud Mask helps brighten, lighten and lift. Vinanza Grape and Kiwi extract targets melanin production, which Peony evens skin tone. The volcanic mud from New Zealand is know for regeneration and combined, this mask works wonders on my dull skin. I try and use this twice a week alongside Aura, and use Halo around my forehead and cheeks, with Aura everywhere else.
It was around three years ago when I finally worked out that oils were the best product for my skin, hair and nails. From taking make up off, to adding much needed moisture into the ends of my hair, and even for balancing out the oil production of my combination skin, oils have changed things. I have been using the Antipodes Divine Oil Certified Organic with Avocado oil and Rosehip. It’s very light on the skin, and also doesn’t leave any greasy residue. It’s my night time oil, but if my skin is feeling particularly dry in the morning, I’ll add a drop into my day time moisturiser. Going forward into Autumn, I think I’ll be getting a lot of use of the Divine Oil.
The Antipodes Vanilla Pod Hydrating Day Cream is a little beauty. Not only is it really hydrating but it’s so light and fresh. I feel like my skin wakes up after putting this on. I am using it at night time, rather than in the morning as when combined with the Divine Oil, it makes a really rich and soothing sleep mask. I wake up and my face feels like it has that boost that it needs, and I look glowy. The combination of skincare that I’m used is really working for me.
I have been eyeing up some further Antipodes products and I think I’m going to try out some of the cleansers next, in particular the Grapeseed Butter Cleanser which looks right up my street.
Have you tired Antipodes before? Tell me your favourite products so I can add them to my list!
I have recently been the recipient of two palettes from Illamasqua, courtesy of Lovin Manchester after the Manchester Blog Awards. It has been some time since I’ve used Illamasqua shadows and I’d forgotten just how good they are. After spotting the palettes in the Illamasqua Final Call line up, I thought that now is the perfect time to show you how beautiful they are before you grab your bargain. Originally priced at £36, they are half price at £18 which is insane for a palette of 8 shadows. The Illamasqua Delirious and Shiver palettes are just stunning.
Out of the two, I was most drawn to the Illamasqua Delirious palette which is in the red packaging. Whilst the cardboard outer is flimsy and not in keeping with the existing black cased palettes, the shadows inside are still the same beautiful formulations, buttery soft powders and intensely pigmented colours. A warm toned palette with a mix of matte and shimmer shades, they can be used on the eye, body and face. I was drawn to Delirious as soon as I saw it.
Illamasqua Shiver Palette in the blue packaging is a cool toned palette, again with a mixture of matte and shimmer shades. Although I would never wear cooler shades such as silver and grey, this palette is gorgeous. Plus it contains the cult classic Obsidian which is the blackest black shadow I have ever tried. In fact, I’ve never found another shadow that has the same impact. It’s incredible.
Whilst I wish the packaging was a bit more robust, it doesn’t distract from the superior quality of the shadows inside. I find them an breeze to work with and whether they are being blended or worn alone, they really hold on to the lid and last for an age. I also find that there is minimal creasing and no smudging of the darker shades. They’re an absolute steal at £18.
I wanted to quickly share this amazing offer with you from the babes at Caudalie, because it’s fantastic! With this ridiculously warm weather we are having, I am finding that I need to carry around bottles of water with me. It’s getting stiflingly hot on the bus and the walk to work is making me very dehydrated. Not only am I feeling like I need a gallon of water but my skin is feeling the same. I’ve fallen back to my trusty Caudalie to get me through the worst of it, and they really have all bases covered.
The Caudalie Vinosource range has featured quite in my skincare routine before. I have been a lover of the Vinosource Moisturising Sorbet and now, I am also a lover of the Vinosource SOS Serum. The Vinosource range focuses on hydration by using the power of the grape. Grapes boost the skins natural irrigation system which diffuses water continuously and reduces skin dehydration. I eat a lot of grapes, so it’s only natural that I use their magic powers on my skin. Starting each day with a few pumps of Vinosource SOS Serum, this lightweight serum is free from nasties, absorbs into the skin in an instant and leaves me feeling quenched. It’s great to use prior to makeup application and it doesn’t leave any kind of greasy film on the skin. It is only the first time I have tried this product but so far, I am really enjoying using it and my skin is feeling the benefit of the extra hydration.
Caudalie Vinosource Moisturising Sorbet is a gel to cream moisturiser that sinks into the skin beautifully. I do prefer gel based creams especially as part of morning routine as I find that makeup sits better on the skin after use. It feels very soothing and cooling when applied, even though there are no cooling properties within the formulation. It is the lightest moisturiser of the four in the Vinosource range, and I’d be very interested to try more from the range after seeing the results from the Moisturising Sorbet.
When you purchase any two products from the Vinosource range, you can get one of these super cool eco-friendly water bottles for free. At 260ml, it’s perfect for your handbag and it has saved me in a morning on my commute. Just enter BOTTLE2018 at the checkout for your very own Caudalie pink bottle.
When the eyes are the window to the soul, you want them to look good. I think that my eyes are my best asset and love to create eye looks that enhance my green eyes whilst still being quick and easy to do. Using just three products and a pat of glitter, I’m shocked at how sultry and sexy I’ve made my eyes look without using 3428 brushes and several palettes. Dipping into my Charlotte Tilbury collection and using the brand new Legendary Lashes Vol, I’m pretty darn impressed. Here’s a really quick and easy way to recreate the classic Charlotte Tilbury Amber Haze eye look.
What I love about the Colour Chameleon pencils is that they are so hard wearing and long lasting. I have a couple of shades in my collection, and started off with the shades for green eyes; Amethyst Aphrodisiac and Bronzed Garnet. As I’m not one to limit myself, I got a couple for hazel and brown eyes as well. Amber Haze is the brown eyes night shade and is a gorgeous antiqued bronze shade that has light reflecting particles to give an alluring shimmer. The pencil doesn’t contain glitter, and in this look I have added this myself using loose rose gold glitter.
The pencil dries down very quickly to give a smudge proof and budge proof shadow. You do need to work quickly if you want to blend and my MAC 217 was the perfect brush to blow out the shape and blend any hard edges away. It’s not very often that I only wear one shade but it was quite refreshing to work on the blend and the intensity of the colour across my eye.
I wanted to keep the eye soft and smoked out so a pencil eyeliner was the liner of choice for this look. Having previously used the Rock ‘n’ Kohl in Bedroom Black, I’m really pleased to get hold of the Rock ‘n’ Kohl in Barbarella Brown. I’ve really noticed a bit of shift these days in my use of brown liner over black and it makes such a difference. The Rock ‘n’ Kohl pencils glide on like a mix of liquid liner and pencil, and they set solid. No smudging, no flaking, easy to blend and smudge out before they dry down. It really is a great pencil, plus it’s waterproof enough even for my watery hay fever eyes.
There’s a new mascara on the block, and it’s the Legendary Lashes Vol.2. Now, in the interest of clarity and honesty, I am going to state the fact that the original Legendary Lashes was awful. It was wet, it got everywhere and it flaked. It gave me panda eyes and it didn’t do anything I wanted a mascara to do. I didn’t particularly enjoy the Full Fat Lashes either as I found that it smudged everywhere. As you can imagine, I was apprehensive of trying Legendary Lashes Vol.2.
First impressions of Legendary Lashes were the standard ‘wow, I love the Tilbury packaging’. Regardless of the product inside, the packaging is always beautiful. I loved the shape of the wand, the bristles looked like they would grab all the lashes without coating my lid in product and that I could get a grip on each lash to work the mascara through. Bottom lashes coated first and a nice amount of product was transferred over, with no clumping. Moving on to the top lashes, I was very impressed with what I was seeing. There is nothing worse that a mascara giving short stubby lashes, and I found that Legendary Lashes pulled through each lash, coating without clumping, and I had a lot of control over product distribution.
With the warm (sweltering) weather we are having at the moment, and in between the commute to work, my hot office and the commute home, my make up is really being put through it’s pace. Legendary Lashes has remained carbon black on my lashes, with no peeling and flaking or any smudges whatsoever. I think Ms Tilbury has nailed this formulation and has taken on board all the negatives about the original formula to bring a superior mascara. I’m very, very impressed.