Having to get up early each morning is a killer. There are some mornings when all you can think of is staying in bed, whilst some mornings I wake up and I’m so alert after having such a great nights sleep. I have to have quite a strict nighttime routine to make sure that I am getting enough rest, and that includes no technology in the bedroom and giving myself a good hour to wind down before I drift off to sleep. I also use some very stand out products such as the Feather & Down pillow spray, and the Temple Spa Repose Aromatherapy Resting Cream. Winding down has become extremely important to me. It’s not just to aid a good nights sleep, but to remove the stress of the day to allow my brain to relax. Mindfulness has been so important to me, and since my Doctor suggested it to help deal with my anxiety, it really has helped in my therapy and my mental state.

5 Minutes of Mindfulness with Aromatherapy Associates

5 Minutes of Mindfulness with Aromatherapy Associates

Aromatherapy Associates have featured quite heavily in my daily life over the last few months and I have turned to using essential oils to help balance my mind. Not only am I using select products for certain situations, but I am taking more and more time to embrace the healing properties of the essential oils. 5 minutes of mindfulness is such a short period of time, but it makes a whole world of difference.

Each morning when I wake up, I jump in the shower and use Aromatherapy Associates Revive Body Wash to awaken my senses. The oil based body wash certainly lifts my spirits with its blend of Bergamot, grapefruit and Neroli. Neroli is a great, natural anti depressant that calms the mind, whilst grapefruit helps to boost energy. A five minute shower where I can inhale the scents leaves me feeling so refreshed and ready for the day. Locking in the moisture in my skin, and to keep the uplifting aroma present, the Revive Body Lotion gives me an added boost without being too over powering.

Of an evening, a relaxing bath is sometimes the only cure that you need. Although longer than five minutes, I can sit in the bath and let the daily commute and tense workload wash away. I love my Friday night ritual where I use a good slug of one of my Aromatheraphy Associates Bath Oils. If you haven’t yet tried them and are unsure about spending £47 on a bottle of oil, I really cannot recommend the Aromatherapy Associates Miniature Bath and Shower Oil set enough. With 10 mini bottles of the full collection of oils, it’s perfect for not only trying the full range but also finding a blend that suits your needs. My current favourites are De-Stress Muscle and Inner Strength. I’m keeping hold of the Support blends for the winter months, especially Support Breathe which will come in handy next time I have a cold!

Using just five minutes of mindfulness can really change your outlook on things, so I have put a few ideas together that I use frequently to help me become a more relaxed person.

Breathe. So cliche, but sometimes you don’t realise just how tense you are. Taking deep breaths and inhaling and exhaling properly helps to relax the muscles. I feel the release of the tension across my shoulders to be one of the best relaxants.

Switch off the technology. Winding down before bed is so important for me. Sitting at a computer all day means that I actually don’t want to be on my phone or laptop when I get home. Although I like to relax by spilling out my thoughts in a blog post, I have started to give myself set times and make sure I have switched off by a certain time. The same goes with the TV. I don’t even put it on in my bedroom before bed anymore, and I find that I don’t have as many random dreams about programmes that I have been watching.

Set my alarm five minutes early. Although getting up is quite tough sometimes, I find that walking up five minutes before I need to helps me to come round without the need to rush out of bed and dive in the shower to wake me up.

Read a book. I think in this day and age, we are so consumed by technology that everything is on a device, including books. I make sure that I try and read a least one paperback book a month. There’s nothing better than curling up on the sofa with a new paperback and reading a chapter or two.

Herbal tea. Enough said.

Make a cosy environment. I’m a firm believer in that a cosy home equals a cosy heart. Candles, fluffy socks, knitted throws, a purring cat. It all makes me feel a lot more relaxed.

Essential oils. Breathe them in and let them go to work on your mind, body and soul.

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There’s something a little mysterious in the air at the moment. I don’t know if it’s because the clocks have been turned back and the nights are closing in, or that its cold and crisp in a morning but I feel like I’m becoming very wrapped up in this time of year. Without even thinking of Christmas, and the fact that I am walking past the huge Santa that is being assembled in Albert Square in Manchester, I absolutely adore the ‘ber’ months. October is full of falling orange leaves and Halloween, December is full of Christmas but November – well, there’s something special about this month. Bonfire Night, the Christmas Markets start, the cold and dark nights. I love it. It’s also the month for the yearly event, Key 103 Live at the Manchester Arena. I am feeling very giddy right now.

Get Ready with Me for Key 103 Live! iconic london marc jacobs beauty fenty beauty

Get Ready with Me for Key 103 Live! iconic london marc jacobs beauty fenty beauty

Get Ready with Me for Key 103 Live! iconic london marc jacobs beauty fenty beauty

Get Ready with Me for Key 103 Live! iconic london marc jacobs beauty fenty beauty

On the 9th November, Manchester Arena will play host to 8 live acts including Rudimental, Sigala and a personal favourite, Louisa Johnson. I wasn’t particularly a fan of Louisa Johnson’s music, but after seeing her perform live at Manchester Gay Pride in August, I quickly changed my mind. She was absolutely incredible and wow, what a voice she has. There are eight acts playing in total and the line up is absolutely brilliant. I feel even more excited knowing that I will be experiencing the evening with my sister.

As I haven’t done a Get Ready With Me in such a long time, I thought this is the ideal opportunity to share with you my choice of make up for event. It’s not a Get Ready With Me as such as there are sadly no pictures of my finished face but, you will get to see it when I put my entire outfit together. So, I have chosen some new loves and some classic items to create a flirty, sparkle and slightly festive face.

Starting with my eyes, I always seem to go for a strong eye and keep my base and lips pretty subtle. The Iconic London Day to Slay palette has come in so handy, with it’s gorgeous warm shades and buttery textures. They are incredibly pigmented and I’m actually quite shocked with just how little product that you need to work with. Starting with Peaches and Dream on a large fluffy brush, this shade covers the lid and crease to give an even surface to work on before I apply Bellini into the crease and working out as a transition shade. When I first saw Bellini, I knew that this would be the shade of the palette that I will be hitting pan on first. Taking Merlot Monday into the crease to deepen and define, before adding Rags to Riches across the lid for some sparkle and shine. Not forgetting the lower lash line, Merlot Monday and Bellini soften the line whilst bringing the entire eye together. A slick of Kat Von D Tattoo Liner and a sweep or two of Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir mascara before adding Iconic London Faux Silk Lashes in Fabulous.

Get Ready with Me for Key 103 Live! iconic london marc jacobs beauty fenty beauty

Get Ready with Me for Key 103 Live! iconic london marc jacobs beauty fenty beauty

Get Ready with Me for Key 103 Live! iconic london marc jacobs beauty fenty beauty

Get Ready with Me for Key 103 Live! iconic london marc jacobs beauty fenty beauty

Get Ready with Me for Key 103 Live! iconic london marc jacobs beauty fenty beauty

Get Ready with Me for Key 103 Live! iconic london marc jacobs beauty fenty beauty

With the eyes done, it’s time for a simple yet long lasting base. Using Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Primer and Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Foundation in shade 240, I know that this will last several hours as well as keeping my oily skin looking flawless. I’ve been so impressed with this foundation and for an oily skin gal, it’s been pretty darn perfect at not sliding off my face. For blush, the H&M Blusher in Brown Sugar, which is one of my all time favourite blushes. It gives the most natural pinky beige hint of colour. Iconic London Illuminator for my cheekbones and inner corner, before being topped with Anastasia Beverly Hills Kitty Kat from the Nicole Guerriero palette. Finally, the Beauty Crush x Laurie Elle Matte Liquid Lipstick for a subtle, long lasting lip before finishing off with a spritz of Urban Decay Setting Spray for good measure.

I do wish that I could show you the finished look right now, but it will be worth the wait – I promise!

Key 103 Live tickets are still available and if you are looking for a great night out next Thursday, you can purchase yours from the Key 103 website.

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Face masks, multi masking, sheet masks, gel masks, gold masks – there is a veritable minefield out there of different masks to target your concerns and give you a glowing and radiant complexion. It’s very rare that I don’t do some sort of face mask at home. I think they give me that chance to sit and relax for a good 20 minutes with no stress and chance to unwind, whilst my skin gets a shot of hydration or deep cleansing goodness. I have finally managed to get my skin back under control after months and months of it misbehaving. My secret? Multimasking. It has been a beauty breakthrough that I look forward to getting home from work to do. Using two face masks from Kiehls, I have brought my skin back to life.

Multimasking with Kiehls Face Masks rare earth deep pore cleansing ultra facial overnight hydrating

Multimasking with Kiehls Face Masks rare earth deep pore cleansing ultra facial overnight hydrating

Multimasking is a pretty straight forward concept. Using several masks as once, you can tend to each area of your face and it’s concerned in one go. My two main concerns are clogged pores and hydration, and this has never changed. Although I can bring it under control, if I forget about it, it comes back with a vengeance. Over the course of a week, I will multimask twice a week, as I will be using a deep pore cleansing mask. I will continue to carry on with a hydrating mask more frequently, but with my deep cleanse, I don’t want to over do it.

Starting off the Kiehls Rare Earth Deep Pore Cleansing Mask, I apply this to my nose and cheeks area, paying more attention to the area of my cheeks nearest to my nose. My chin also gets a look in as well as my jaw line. The Rare Earth mask contains white clay from the Marajó Island at the mouth of the Amazon River which helps with purifying skin, absorbing excess oil and refines skin texture. It does work at pulling out impurities, which is why I can only use it twice a week as those under the skin spots come right to the surface. Once the mask has dried, I remove it with a warm muslin cloth before it starts to crack.

Multimasking with Kiehls Face Masks rare earth deep pore cleansing ultra facial overnight hydrating

Multimasking with Kiehls Face Masks rare earth deep pore cleansing ultra facial overnight hydrating

On my forehead, cheeks and neck, I use the Kiehls Ultra Facial Overnight Hydrating Masque which is almost like throwing a glass of water over my face. As a huge lover of the Ultra Facial day cream, I was made up to find that Kiehls made a mask to accompany it. It’s a gel like texture that can be used when multi masking as well as for its main purpose of an overnighe mask. When multi masking, I rinse it off after the Rare Earth has dried and then for good measure do a lighter layer over the area that the Rare Earth has been, leave it on for ten minutes and blot off excess before getting into bed and letting it work it’s magic whilst I sleep. I adore the Ultra Facial mask as it leaves my skin so smooth and so hydrated that I can sometimes take it easy on moisturiser on the following days after use.

For a little added extra treat, and for when I’m looking a bit puffy eyed from sleepless nights, I use the Kiehls Creamy Avocado Eye Treatment as an eye mask. I think that the Avocado Eye Treatment is getting the press it deserves lately as it’s such a fab product. Not only is it ideal to use in the morning to help makeup stay in place and refresh your eyes, it helps moisturise under the eyes without causing any irritation to my already sensitive eyes.

Skincare is so subjective on what works, and what doesn’t, but I have really turned a corner now that I understand my skin so much better and have been using different products at the same time for different concerns. There’s no point putting the Rare Earth all over my face, as certain areas don’t need it and will have the adverse effect. For now, my skin is behaving and I am so happy that it’s doing the right things for me. Have you tried multimasking? Would it be something that is beneficial to you?

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Over the years, I have tried so many brands of makeup yet there is one brand that I haven’t had many, if any, dealings with except for their fragrance line. For some unknown reason, I was never really drawn to it, until Lisa Eldridge took over as creative director. I have a lot of love for Lisa Eldridge. Her YouTube videos have taught me an awful lot of skills over the years and when she took over Lancome, the brand suddenly became very lustworthy. It seemed to become a lot more current and in keeping with this generation and I do believe that Eldridge’s direction has taken it from being a classic brand to a more iconic version of it’s past self. Although Lancome has a reputation for having some of the best mascaras on the market, I wasn’t particularly familiar with much else until lately and now, well, I have a massive love for everything that I have tried. A true rags to riches story for me personally, and I’m so stunned that for all these years, I feel like I have missed out on so many good products.

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

Starting my Lancome journey, I was introduced to the new formulation of the Lancome Ultra Idole 24hr Wear, which has since been rebranded to Teint Idole Ultra Wear. A superior, full coverage foundation that features 24hr wear, a flawless finish and has 40 shades. The launch of Fenty Beauty and the 40 shade range has obviously been a huge talking point recently, however it seems that Lancome has been forgotten about, as it has many shades for women of colour. I don’t know whether it’s due to the fact that Lancome has this classic reputation, or because Rhianna is fronting the Fenty Brand but the Teint Idole Ultra Wear is a brilliant foundation.

When it first was rebranded, I was kindly sent shade 007 Beige Rose, which unfortunately is many shades too light for me. I went to colour matched, after trying out the shade finder on the website and I actually was the colour that I thought I was, shade 048 Beige Chataigne. Rather than wasting the paler shade, I have utilised it into my routine and I now use it as a colour corrector as the salmon pink tones of the foundation are perfect for my under eyes. As the foundation is so full coverage, a tiny bit is needed to use it as a colour corrector but it works so well as it is of course designed to be a foundation, so it doesn’t settle in my fine lines under my eyes. The shade 048 is a perfect match for my skin tone, and I love how it looks and feels like skin. It does last a long time, and when I remove my makeup with a wipe before I start my cleansing routine, you can see that it has held onto the skin. It’s ideal for my combination skin as it works well if my skin is oily and doesn’t make it any oilier. I also love the scent of it. It smells quite floral but not overpowering, and one and a half pumps is enough for my face. I literally use it every single day and I find myself selecting it over many of my other foundations for general day to day wear.

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

The Lancome La Base Pro Hydra Glow primer works brilliantly with the Teint Idole Ultra Wear foundation, and it gives a wonderfully dewy and radiant glow. On no makeup days, a touch of this primer is exactly what my skin needs to give it a boost. With a subtle illumination. I’ve been using the Lancome All Foundation Brush to buff the foundation into my skin, over the top of the primer that I have patted on with my warm fingertips and it gives such a flawless and seamless finish that it’s actually changed my mind on using foundation brushes to apply, rather than Beauty Blenders.

One of the best discoveries that I have made this year is definitely the Lancome Monsieur Big mascara. I have always said that I am not bothered about high end mascaras, as I have found many drugstore mascaras that do a fabulous job without the price tag, but I am a convert. I love a mascara to be lengthening as well as volumising, and for my lashes to look long and full without looking spidery. I take a long time to apply mascara in a morning, and like to make sure that each lash is coated without clumps, to show off just how long I can get them. I do wear very minimal makeup for work these days, and my go to face is made up of Teint Idole and two coats of Monsieur Big. It stays put all day, doesn’t leave black smudges under my eyes and I still feel quite glam, considering I’m looking very au naturel.

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Monsieur Big Matte Shaker La Base Primer (1)

For a pop of longlasting colour to my lips, I have found that the Lancome Matte Shakers are excellent. I am a matte liquid lipstick addict, and it’s very rare that I don’t wear a liquid lipstick these days when going out. To find a matte alternative that lasts as long as liquid lipsticks, without the dryness and having a much more comfortable wear has been quite a surprising discovery. The premise of the Matte Shakers is quite similar. Made with a water in oil formulation, the shaking activates the pigments within the formula which then are applied to the lip using the cushion applicator. It’s not particularly easy to create a defined lip, but if you are quite careful with the way you apply it, it can give that great defined Cupid’s Bow. The colours are vibrant and long wearing, and settle into a matte finish shortly after application with a comfort feel, that doesn’t actually feel like you are wearing a lip product. They do stain the lips, and my hands when I was swatching but an oil based remover breaks it down easily.

I wouldn’t have believed you if you were to tell me that Lancome would feature so heavily within my makeup routine, but I am so pleased that it does. I have discovered some incredible products, that I can’t live without – in particular, my mascara and foundation. I do love having my eyes opened to a wider world of makeup!

Which brands would you never have tried but have been really surprised by?

*Contains PR Samples and/or Affiliate Links.

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When I used to visit Miami with work, we always used to have mini kits in the hotel room, provided by Templespa. They contained three samples of products, all designed to aid a good night’s rest in the biggest fluffiest bed that I’ve ever been in. Although I was never a huge fan of Miami, I could never wait to arrive to the hotel, simply for the Temple Spa goodies. My post flight ritual was to have a intensely hot shower, followed by a a deep cleansing face wash and mask, before applying the the creams and sprays from the kit and getting into bed to watch episode after episode of Catfish. I’m quite basic when it comes to relaxing. After I gave up flying, I knew I couldn’t give up my three wonderful products from Templespa, so they now live at my house in their full size glory; Quietude, Repose and Aaahhh!

The Ultimate Relax with Templespa

The Ultimate Relax with Templespa

The Ultimate Relax with Templespa

After everything that has gone on in my life over the last few months, I have realised that I can get through the day as long as I have had a good nights sleep. I have recently turned to aromatherapy as an alternative medicine, and I have been utilising essential oils to help reduce my anxiety, relax my mind and eliminate stress. Using a pillow and room spray has helped immensely, and Templespa Quietude has really helped in aiding a peaceful nights sleep, as well as bringing a sense of calm to my bedroom. A relaxing blend of Mediterranean essential oils of cedar wood, cypress, lavender, clove, vetivert, orange, patchouli, frankincense and chamomile combine to create a truly zen atmosphere. I spray Quietude liberally around my bedroom, but concentrating the mist around my bed and on my pillows and each night, I drift off with aromas enveloping me. It’s a little slice of heaven.

After a long day of walking across the Atlantic, I used to relish in the thought of Templespa AAAHHH! After my muscles were crying out for some relief, AAAHHH! has always been a perfect way to calm, cool and soothe tired and achy legs. Starting at the feet and working my way up my legs, massaging in the balm like texture, the blend of peppermint, clove, lavender, black pepper & clary make me legs feel all tingly and cold until my muscles sink into a state of tranquillity. I’ve also been using it across my back, instead of using a deep heat and it has helped in easing pain. It’s great for legs with the dandelion extract as it helps with fluid retention and puffiness, which, for a seasoned flyer, was perfect to help reduce swollen ankles.

The Ultimate Relax with Templespa

The Ultimate Relax with Templespa

The Ultimate Relax with Templespa

For a perfect end to a relaxation pamper session, Templespa Repose is one of the most beautiful creams that I have used. It’s an aromatherapy resting cream, filled with hops valerian, chamomile, frankincense, lavender, patchouli, geranium, bitter orange and clary essential oils with aid a restful nights sleep as well as giving my skin the nourishment it needs overnight. It feels like silk when patted into my skin, and although it’s not as rich as the Templespa Skin Truffle, it feels like it’s refreshing and soothing my skin, rather than giving it a deep hydration. I don’t tend to use Repose each night as I like something a bit richer most evenings, but when I want a deep sleep, it’s the first pot that I reach for. I also like to give my hands a quick rub over with the excess after using it on my face so the scent is surrounding me whilst I’m in bed.

Templespa have teamed up with Mariposa Trust and with every Templespa Repose you purchase online, you will receive another one absolutely free, with 10% of the Repose sales going straight to the Mariposa Trust.

To support the Mariposa Trust further, you can also take advantage of the Templespa Take A Moment set for £29. 10% of all the sales will go towards the Mariposa Trust and if you check my Instagram, you can see how cute it is. There’s also a special offer on the Templespa website, where if you spend £65, you can get the set for £15 instead of £29. It’s an ideal way to try out two of my favourite products as well as two that I haven’t yet tried!

Have you tried anything from Templespa? Any recommendations as to what I should try next, as you know how much I love the brand.

*Contains PR Samples and/or Affiliate links.

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Back in the day, one of my favourite scents was Be Delicious Green Apple from DKNY and I wore it to death. It helped that it used to cost peanuts from duty free, so I didn’t feel bad about spritzing it everywhere, all of time. Smelling it now brings back so many memories, both good and bad, but I can honestly say that it’s not going to perfume that I will never buy again. It has that classic DKNY-ness to it and I don’t think I’ve found a DKNY fragrance that lives up to Be Delicious. Until now. DKNY Nectar Love has been released and it has that childish, free spirited quality to it’s scent that fills me with joy and good memories when I wear it. I feel like I need to explain this one.

DKNY Nectar Love Eau de Parfum

DKNY Nectar Love Eau de Parfum

You know when you wear a perfume and it reminds you of things later on in life, well DKNY Nectar Love has done the same for me. I received my bottle back in July, so I have had ample time to wear it, and enjoy it. On one of those particular days of wear, I had a lovely day with my Grandad. Fun, carefree, and lots of laughs, I didn’t even link the two together until it came to photographing it and I sprayed it over me. Immediately, I was transported back to being with him, laughing and enjoying ourselves. I felt like a child again.

DKNY Nectar Love is my usual choice of gourmand; a fruity-floral that has a sparkling and fresh finish without being overly flowery. The fragrance itself contains an exclusive natural attraction extract, which might explain why I have so many feelings about it. It opens on the skin with a sweet honey, and a sudden burst of honeysuckle. It’s a summers day in a bottle, with a citrusy blend of grapefruit, mandarin orange, nectarine and a hint of freesia. The heart of jasmin, mirabelle and Lily of the Valley warm onto the skin before a delicious dry down of cedar, vanilla, musk and neroli appear on the skin.

DKNY Nectar Love Eau de Parfum

In terms of longevity, it definitely lasts longer on my clothes than on my skin, but when I get that quick burst of fragrance from yesterdays cardi, it fills me with warmth and happiness. On my skin, I would average around 4 hours before it has almost disappeared. I think I would be more concerned if it was a high end perfume lasting only a few hours, but as it’s DKNY, it’s really reasonably priced. Available in 3 sizes; 30ml, 50ml and 100ml priced at £40, £55 and £74 respectively. I have found that Feel Unique is the best price point at then moment for DKNY Nectar Love so it’s worth checking out.

I have to draw attention to the flacon. In keeping with the Be Delicious bottles, it looks like a taller, less round apple, with a top that looks similar to the previous Be Delicious versions. The lid is lifted up top reveal the spray, and both the lid and flacon is decorated with honey bees. Oh, how cute would it have been if they had called it Bee Delicious!

For the sheer fact that this perfume now holds so many memories for me, it’s an absolute winner. For it’s honey love and warming attraction, it’s a must. Have you tried it out yet?

*Contains PR Samples and / or Affiliate Links

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I have decided that in order to keep my sanity, that I need to double up on my make up brushes. Simply, so I can have one lot to use, and a clean lot for the following week. I can then alternate in cleaning them rather than having the arduous task of washing 549382 brushes each Sunday. So far, so good and I now have a makeup brush collection to rival backstage at Paris Fashion Week. The funny thing is, I only use around 10 brushes for a full face, so I have no idea as to why I go through so many brushes. The Beau Belle Limited Edition Rose Gold Brush Set has been a god send for me. An essential collection of 10 brushes, which just happens to fit in so well with what I use each week for a full face. And, they’re rose gold. Winner.

Beau Belle Limited Edition Rose Gold Brush Set

Beau Belle Limited Edition Rose Gold Brush Set

Beau Belle are quite a new brand on the block and aside from their own website, I have only seem them featured on Pretty Little Thing. I am expecting them to become quite popular in the future as not only are the catering for the trends such as rose gold collections, but the brushes are of an amazing quality at a really reasonable price point. The Limited Edition Rose Gold Set is £59.95 however for the regular handled brush sets, they are priced around £45 for a complete set.

They come in a handy travel pot that not only is sturdy enough for weekend breaks and holidays, but it makes a really handy storage pot for your vanity. Being white in colour, means that it will be staying on my vanity as I don’t want it to get dirty! I do really value storage pots like this, especially those that are for full sized brushes as I do travel a lot and they come in exceptionally handy when trying to pack light.

The brushes themselves are all synthetic bristles, on a rose gold handle with indents placed just underneath the ferrule for easy grip. It’s actually quite surprising how much easier it makes it to hold, when the handle is as smooth as this. It makes precision work incredibly easy as well. The ten brushes cover all aspects of a full face of make up with four face brushes and six eye brushes.

Beau Belle Limited Edition Rose Gold Brush Set

Beau Belle Limited Edition Rose Gold Brush Set

Beau Belle Limited Edition Rose Gold Brush Set

The face brushes include a powder brush, a stippling brush, an angled contour brush and a foundation brush. For the eyes; an angled brow brush, large shader brush, angled shader brush, blending brush, a shader brush and a tapered blending brush. I’m very particular about the brushes that I use for my eyes and I always use a flat shading brush to pack on colour, a blending brush for the crease and a tapered blending brush to blend away any lines. I have no loyalties to a particular brand however as long as they can do the job to my standard, then they will always be used in my routine.

Now, back to my original point of why I have so many brushes – the washing. I’m very pleased to say that the Beau Belle Rose Gold brushes wash and dry beautifully with no shedding, and no splayed shaping after getting them wet. As with all my brushes, I wash them carefully to make sure that no water gets in the ferrules and loosens the glue, and I always use my Sigma brush spa to make sure they get a full deep clean. I’m very happy with the new additions to my collection.

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I find it absolutely incredible that some of the YouTubers and Bloggers that I have been watching and reading for such a long time have hit the heights of success that has lead to having their name put on makeup. Whether it be their very own line like Tanya Burr and Jeffree Star, or collaborations like Jaclyn Hill with Becca and Morphe, it’s absolutely amazing to see how far our little corner of the internet could take you. During 2017, Pixi Beauty released the Pixi Pretties collection in collaboration with four leading beauty and lifestyle influencers; Aspyn Ovard, It’s Judy Time, Caroline Hirons and Maryam Maquillage. With the same great quality formulations that we expect from Pixi Beauty but with the influence and style of the four gurus, it’s a collection that definitely deserves some recognition.

When my Pixi Ambassador box arrived, I was absolutely delighted to see a selection of the Pixi Pretties collection, as well as travel sized Glow Tonic, which we all know that I adore. I have spoken many a time about Glow Tonic so I won’t cover old ground, but yes, it’s still as fabulous as ever.

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

The Pixi Pretties collection has garnered a lot of interest simply down to the fact that skincare guru Caroline Hirons has teamed up with Pixi to bring her double cleansing to the masses in one simple pot – the Pixi Double Cleanse. I have spoken about cleansing balms a lot over this last few years, and I have a love/hate relationship with them. I have very sensitive dry eyes so I need to use a different method, such as a face wipe to get my mascara off first. I have only found two cleansing balms that haven’t caused irritation to my eyes and left a film over them; the Elemis Pro Collagen Cleansing Balm and the Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm. Unfortunately, the Pixi Beauty Double Cleanse caused me quite a lot of issues around the eyes when using the oil based cleanser. I tried it for removing my mascara without using a wipe previously, I tried it after using a wipe. Both times, it didn’t clear all traces of mascara and left a film across my eyeballs which caused irritation. However, the redeeming factor for me was the cream cleanser. Gentle, and soothing, my skin feels so soft and clean after using it. I am actually a bit gutted that you can’t just get the cream cleanser on it’s own, as I would buy it by the gallon.

The Pixi x Aspyn Ovard collection is the epitome of casual, carefree and fresh faced. Three Glow-y Powders in the softest, velvety powders that give a luminous finish to the skin. I have the shade Rome Rose which is a beautiful medium rose pink ran through with a golden shimmer. It reminds me of Nars Orgasm when swatched, however Rome Rose is a tad darker. It’s a very naturally pretty shade that gives a soft glow, whether used as a blush or a highlight.

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

The Pixi Beauty and the PixiPretties Collection

From Maryam Maquillage, two palettes and a brush, of which I have the Strobe and Bronze palette. Without being biased, as it is the one that I have been sent, but I do prefer the Strobe and Bronze palette to the Strobe and Sculpt palette, quite simply down to the shades within each one. The Strobe and Bronze palette contains four shimmer shades and two matte shades, with three highlight colours and three bronzing colours. I am so happy that I have found a palette that contains darker bronzers as lighter ones don’t tend to make much of a difference to the warmth of my skin. The highlighter shades are beautiful. Honey toned hues that would look great on any skin tone, and although it’s not often that I would choose a yellow golden shade, I have been wearing the third highlight shade an awful lot lately. I also must pay homage to the quality of the formulation. Finely milled, and buttery soft to the touch, they almost feel like a powder to a cream.

I have a thing for Pixi eyeshadows, and I find them to be some of the easiest shadows to work with. I look forward to each Christmas in order to get the Ultimate Kit, so I had some high hopes for the Pixi x It’s Judy Time Eyeshadow Palette. At £28 for 12 shadows, I think it’s a real good price for just how special and underrated these shadows are. Of course, like in every palette, there are some shades that work better on a brush rather than using a finger to swatch, with some darker shades needing some building up. That being said, I am obsessed with the shimmers within the palette. Autumn eyes, you got it. The colours in this are perfectly suited to the tones of the season, and I’m happy to see a palette with a warm colour palette as cool tones just do not work for me. The velvety soft shadows layer beautifully, as well as blend out seamlessly, and when I wear these over the top of an eye primer, they last forever. Impressed? You bet I am.

Although I have been using Pixi Beauty products for quite sometime, I still feel like I have a long way to go in really getting into it. Luckily, I have a few new items to keep me going. Hands up, who’s excited for the Christmas Pixi range?!

*Contains PR Samples and/or affiliated link

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Well, hello there my little beauty addicts. Thank you all for sticking around whilst I’ve been noticeably absent, but I think that I have started to get my mojo back – or at least, I’m trying to. Whilst I have been away from my computer, I have had the chance to get stuck into to a lot of products and really try them out. After all, my blog is about my opinions on products and I like to give them all a good going over to make sure that I am totally honest about what I share with you. One of the products that I have been trialling is from bareMinerals, and I simply cannot tell you just how long I have been waiting for this to be launched. The BarePro Liquid Foundation is in my life, and damn, it’s exactly what I thought it would be like.

bareMinerals BarePro Liquid Foundation

bareMinerals BarePro Liquid Foundation

bareMinerals BarePro Liquid Foundation

bareMinerals BarePro Liquid Foundation

The need for bareMinerals to bring out a foundation like BarePro has stemmed from my love of the bareMinerals bareSkin serum concealer. It’s possibly one of the best concealers in terms of coverage and brightening that doesn’t settle into lines, and lasts all day. It’s quite a runny consistency, but has the coverage of Tarte’s Shape Tape. It has been a daily part of my makeup routine, for an instant lift of light under the eyes, that covers dark circles and makes the puffiness look a lot less noticeable.

As I have been so in love with the formula, I wanted a foundation that has the exact same lightweight formulation but with superb coverage and a natural matte finish. I found out back in February of this year that the bareMineral BarePro Liquid Foundation was in production and I have been waiting oh so patiently for its September launch. The launch was to bring 30 shades of foundation in a formula that promises a natural matte finish, a high coverage, a soft focus finish that is not only lightweight and breathable, but is also heat, humidity and sweat proof. Sounds amazing, right?

bareMinerals BarePro Liquid Foundation

bareMinerals BarePro Liquid Foundation

bareMinerals BarePro Liquid Foundation

The shade that suits my skin tone the best is Warm Natural 12 and although it looks quite light and very yellow when dispensed from the pump, it transforms on my skin to such a perfect match. It would be worthwhile getting colour matched for this foundation as they do look different in the bottle than what they do on the skin.

It’s funny, as although I have tried the bareMinerals Mineral foundation in the past, they just didn’t do it for me in terms of coverage. I felt that when I wore it that my skin looked great as well as flawless, but I feel like I was missing something in terms of coverage. Although I don’t like to feel like I am wearing foundation, I do like to feel that I have some coverage. The bareMinerals barePro ticks all the boxes. I love how it makes my skin feel, and how it looks. I love how long it lasts and how my skin doesn’t feel dry and parched after a day of wearing it. BareMinerals claim that the papaya enzymes within the formulation will improve your skins texture over time. As of yet, I cannot see any signs to say that this claim is true, but what I can say is that this foundation has definitely been worth waiting for. The addition of the bareMinerals Luxe Performance Brush, which mimics the touch and suppleness of fingers, has also been greatly received. I love the shape of this brush, and it is unlike any others that I own. The angled domed bristles achieve a flawless finish and get into every nook and cranny for an all over natural finish.

bareMinerals are totally upping their game at the moment, and I am thoroughly enjoying trying out new products such as the GenNude lipsticks. Have you tried the new barePro? What do you think?

*Contains PR Samples and/or affiliate links

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Two weeks ago today, the worldwide launch of Rihanna’s own makeup line Fenty Beauty was launched. Exclusive to Sephora and Harvey Nichols in the UK, it was a launch that I was quite honestly in two minds about. Celebrity beauty launches are popping up ever so frequently lately, and it seems that everyone wants to try their hand at creating this amazing makeup line that people will flock to. It takes something a little bit different to grab my attention enough for me to want to spend my hard earned money on something these days – I know, I’ve changed. My first thoughts on when I saw the press release was that it looked kind of basic but also quite cute. I then saw that Rihanna has brought something to the table that I don’t believe that many brands have achieved – inclusivity and celebrating diversity. Heading to the launch to see just what Fenty Beauty was all about, and well, I was pretty impressed.

Fenty Beauty at Harvey Nichols

 

Fenty Beauty at Harvey Nichols

Fenty Beauty at Harvey Nichols

Fenty Beauty at Harvey Nichols

Fenty Beauty at Harvey Nichols

I can only describe Fenty Beauty as a capsule collection. Celebrating the face, with hardly any emphasis on the lips and eyes, the main talking point of the collection has to be the Fenty Face. A soft matte filt’r base with a subtle glow and a shine free complexion. Rihanna’s go to, super dewy face that caters for all skin tones and personalities. I’m going to look further into the complexion range soon as I have a little haul on it’s way which I know that you will absolutely love, but for now, I’m going to delve into some subtle glow and shimmer.

The Fenty Beauty Match Stix Shimmer Skinstick in Unicorn is possibly one of my favourite shades from the 10 shades. A lilac iridescent cream stick that can be used to highlight, blush and enhance, the cream to powder formula is light as air and blends like a dream. I must say that I love that the packaging that I once thought was a bit basic, is actually a lot more heavy duty in real life. The casings are magnetic so you can pop your favourite shades together and they won’t get lost in your bag. Sure, it’s a bit gimmicky but it’s cute and quirky and not seen in other brands. There is also a portable highlighter brush for seamless blending which also clicks onto your Match Stix. Unbelievably, the prices of the Match Stix are just £21 and the brush is £19, which for a high profiled range, I think it’s actually really reasonably priced.

Being a highlighter addict, I spotted the Fenty Beauty Killowatt Freestyle Highlighter Duos as soon as I walked in. Although the Killowatt Solo in Trophy Wife seems to be all over the internet, it isn’t a shade that I would usually go for, so when I saw the deliciously beautiful duos, in various shades of champagne and rose gold, I picked up Girl Next Door and Chic Phreak in utter delight. The most perfect colours for my skin tone, the soft and buttery, finely milled powders are so subtle but yet have an intensity in which they can be built up for a more OTT look. They feel like cream to powder, yet they are just a very soft to touch powder with an ultra fine shimmer.

Fenty Beauty at Harvey Nichols

Fenty Beauty at Harvey Nichols

Fenty Beauty at Harvey Nichols

Fenty Beauty at Harvey Nichols

Fenty Beauty at Harvey Nichols

Although Fenty Beauty hasn’t yet addressed the eyes, I have been using the Match Stix in Unicorn and my Killowatt Duo on both my eyes and lips, as well as my cheeks. I feel that with this collection, it doesn’t need to have a palette or a section for each area of the face as the products work so well across the face.

I have been glowing for days, and I am pretty darn obsessed with my Killowatt Duo which has become an easy, slick across my eyes and cheeks and head off to work product. I still feel glam and done up, even with the slightest bit of make up on. I cannot wait to try everything in the range, and I’m so excited for my new foundation to arrive.

*Contains PR Samples and / or affiliate links

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I love a Girl Boss and there are some women out there who are absolutely killing it right now. Imagine having an idea and starting your very own makeup line from your bedroom. Imagine that it’s so fantastic that within two years of launching, you are having your products sold at Harvey Nichols, House of Fraser and Cult Beauty whilst having celebrities like Kim Kardashian snapping images to share on Instagram of her using the products. The unbelievable success of Jade Elliot is stratospheric, and I am pleased to say that I have been supporting her and her brand since I first saw her share the Iconic London Cream Contour palette on Twitter. Since the brand first launched, the product range has grown so much and a lot of it has ended up in my bedroom. Funny that! Two years, and Jade has absolutely smashed it whilst bring to us beauty obsessives one of the most fantastic ranges of makeup.

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

This is how amazing Iconic London is. I have been using the Iconic London Evo face brushes for around a year. I remember receiving them and thinking that they were such a gimmick, yet they have turned out to be one of the best brushes I’ve used for applying a flawless base. Due to love and overuse, I was applying my make up and the neck of my large Evo brush snapped clean off. I shared my disappointment that I’d killed off my favourite brush. It was a sad day. But, as an Iconic Bae, what happened next? A brand new brush set turned up at my door. I mean, how bloody incredible is that? I actually nearly cried. I didn’t ask for new brushes. Hell, I wasn’t even hinting, but this incredible brand took the opportunity to show just how wonderful they were and not only replaced my poor Evo with a new face brush, but gave me a full new set to play with. Overwhelmed and unbelievably grateful, I’m pretty sure you can imagine what I’ve been doing all weekend!

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

The Iconic London Complete Face Set in Cream and Gold is all sorts of beautiful. Housed in a nude leather look make up bag with the Iconic embossing, it’s a bloggers dream set of brushes. With nine brushes inside, that all designed to create a flawless finish for each step of your makeup application, the cruelty free and 100% vegan synthetic brush hairs are ideal for not only powder, but cream and liquid too. The set comprises of a large powder brush, a fan brush, a foundation buffer, an angled contour brush, a contour buffer, an angled blush brush, a fluffy tapered brush, a flat foundation brush and a concealer blending brush.

As soon as I opened the bag and saw the giant fan brush, I was ecstatic. I’ve wanted a giant fan brush for such a long time and I must say that my highlighter has been on fleek the past few days. I also really like the fluffy tapered brush which is another great addition, as I don’t have one as fluffy. My highlighters are so grateful that I can show them off to perfection. I haven’t had chance to use every single brush yet but those brushes that I have used have been brilliant. They pick up product easily and as they are synthetic, they don’t hold on to too much product which then leads to build up in between cleaning. I am a powder girl, and the only liquid makeup products I tend to use are foundations as well as my liquid highlighters, such as the Iconic London Illuminator in Original.

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

For the love of Iconic London Complete gold and cream face brush set

The Iconic London Illuminator in Original is all sorts of beautiful. Reminiscent of the Cover FX Drops in Rose Gold, the Iconic London illuminator has a beautiful rose gold hue with a metallic finish. It’s actually quite natural when blended in, but when the light hits it, it glows like a thousand stars. It’s simply stunning. A tiny bit goes a long, long way and although perfect on the cheekbones, it would look gorgeous across the decolletage and down the legs for a special occasion.

The Iconic London Fabulous Lashes couldn’t have arrived at the most perfect time. I am heading to the Northern Blog Awards on Saturday evening, where I am up for an award for the Best Beauty Blogger in the North West. Now, I’m not expecting to win at all but I am expecting to have the best lashes in the room. The lashes are silk, with a full fluttery curl that will elongate my almond eyes and give the illusion of fuller, thicker and flirtier lashes. They are absolutely beautiful and the attention to detail, right down to the box they are packaged in just makes me so happy. I look after all my lashes, and I think I will be able to get several wears out of these, if not more.

So many people have said that they have never tried Iconic London beforem, but I do hope that this makes you want to try some items. I totally recommend the Strobing Stick in Original, which is very similar to NARS Copacabana multi stick but with a dewier, shiner glow as well as the brushes. I think I need to treat myself to the Complete Eye Brush set now, as it is part of a collection. What will you be buying from Iconic London? Also, the website does have some pop up offer codes so treat yourself! I love you Iconic!

*Contains PR Samples

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Over the last four and a half years of blogging, I have felt that one of the things that I am know best for is my lipstick swatches. I adore doing them, and I absolutely love being able to try so many new shades, including colours that I wouldn’t normally go for. The only downside to my love of lipstick swatches is that they take me an age and a day to photograph, edit and compile into my signature collage. At the moment, time is of the essence and I don’t really have that much time, and also good light after getting home from work, in order to take 5 billion photos of my lips. I have been desperate to get the new Too Faced Melted Latex lipsticks swatched so I cancelled all plans, got out the lip scrub, charged up my camera and got snapping away. Probably the most fun afternoon I have had in a while and not only have I been able to try out and get a full opinion on nine of the 16 shades, I have found a shade that I would never normally contemplate but I have now been strangely seduced by. So, without further hesitation, I bring you the glossiest, most opaque and long lasting lipsticks from Too Faced.

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

I don’t know about you, but since I’ve been wearing matte liquid lipsticks in nude shades, I’ve been finding that the super brights colours that I was known for wearing have taken a back step. It’s not intentional, but as I’m not wearing that much makeup for work, I don’t feel that I need to have a power lip, like I used to wear frequently when I was flying. It’s been really nice to throw myself back into having some colour in my life, and I feel like the bright gloss finish is taking over the matte lip revolution.

The formulation is that of a thick gloss, that does apply to the lips quite easily but it does need some work, especially with the darker colours. As they are so thick, they’re a tiny bit jam like which makes precision somewhat difficult, more so on the darker colours. I find that outlining my lips first helps a great deal, then filling in the rest of the lip with the colour. I have seen people describe these as being like honey, but I can only liken the honey to how sticky they are. That being said, I don’t have an issue with the stickiness or find that my hair gravitates to my lips. That’s always a bonus.

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The colours of each shade are exceptionally opaque and the swatches that I have done on my arm are done with just one swipe of the lip hugging doe foot applicator. You can see that each one has an intensity that you wouldn’t find in a lip gloss, I find them to be highly pigmented and super glossy, and long lasting to an extent. Again, after reading so many reviews on latex lips, I’ve seen claims that they are glossy liquid lipsticks that last all day and numerous other claims. I’ve had these in my possesion for several weeks and I’ve given them all a good going over to see just how well they perform and I cannot, no matter how hard I try, compare them to a liquid lipstick like the Too Faced Melted Mattes. They share a name of Melted, and that is all. Now, don’t get me wrong – I absolutely love them. They stain the lips and have a higher performing longevity that a standard lipgloss, but I’m only averaging around 2-3 hours wear time.

The Latex name is absolutely perfect for how these look on the lip. They look so glossy and almost plastic, and I am absolutely blown away with the finished look and shade range of these. Out of the 9 shades that I own, there’s just one shade which doesn’t suit me (Twilight Zone) as my skin is too warm toned for a cool toned shade, and I’m been very surprised at just how much I love Strange Love as it’s a chocolate brown that I would never have chosen in my entire life but I am slightly obsessed right now.

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

The BIG Too Faced Melted Latex Lipstick Post!

Peekaboo – soft pink nude

Safe Word – light, cool pink

Love You Long Time – dark, cool pink

But First Lipstick – fuchsia pink

Twilight Zone – bright lavender

Rated R – bright warm pink

I’m Bossy – classic blue red

Bite Me – deep vampy red

Strange Love – chocolate brown

The Too Faced Melted Latex liquified lipsticks are now available in Debenhams at £19 each. There are 14 colours, a clear lip topper in Girl on Top, and if you can get your hands on it, Unicorn Tears has been made into Latex. It’s actually rarer than Unicorn poo right now so good luck with that!

*Contains Affiliate Links and PR Samples

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Over the last three months, I have stepped aside from wearing acrylic nails and I have been embracing the natural nail. It’s actually quite amazing the change in my natural nails especially after getting my first set of acrylics at 15. That’s nearly 20 years of wearing them. *Gasp*. I knew my nails would be paper thin at first, but with a nail routine using some Leighton Denny products which I will introduce you to at a later date, they have finally started to look and behave like real nails. To keep them protected, I do like to get a gel manicure and there are now so many brands who have started to make it easier for us gals on the go to be able to do our own long lasting polish at home. Introducing Candy Coat into my life has made my nails the happiest that they have been in a long time. A cutesy online brand that is now found in salons, and they do a subscription box. I am obsessed.

Candy Coat Nail Subscription Box

Candy Coat Nail Subscription Box

My first Candy Coat subscription box arrived on my doorstep covered in glitter. I knew at that point that we were about to embark on a long lasting relationship. A box decorated with a candy sprinkled, ice cream design that opened up to reveal sparkly shredded paper, glitter love heart confetti, sweeties and my Candy Coat goodies. The Candy Coat subscription box will contain three colours, as well as swatch pops so you can try them out before putting them on your nails, mani essentials, candy and a goodie of the month. The colours are all the new shades that are exclusive to the box before they hit the pick + mix selection of the website. My box was a PR sample, and does contain a few extras for me to try out, so please do bear that in mind.

Inside my Candy Coat box, I received three butterfly swatch rings, two nail colours and a glitter colour, and four Sugars, as well as a base coat and top coat and a glitter brush. There was also a 7 sided nail file and a rainbow glitter nail file. The polishes need to be cured so you do also need a UV or LED lamp, which I had from a previous gel nail set from Red Carpet Manicure.

The Strawberry Base Coat smells insane, and I cured it for one minute under my lamp. You do only need a very thin coat of this. I have the shades 022; a nude grey which only needs 2 coats at 2 minutes under the LED lamp, as well as C061; a blue shade that changes colour with warmth from a sky blue to a pastel blue. It’s very clever. The glitter polish 632 is a Holo Circle polish which looks great alone or over the top of a colour.

Candy Coat Nail Subscription Box

Candy Coat Nail Subscription Box

Candy Coat Nail Subscription Box

Candy Coat Nail Subscription Box

The Candy Coat Sugar in Ice is an intense silver sparkle that is easy to add to a tacky layer of polish before wiping away any excess and finishing with two coats of the Super Shiny No Wipe top coat. The other Sugar shades that I have are Cotton Candy Pink, Cotton Candy Unicorn Dust and Vanilla.

My favourite combination is 022, with my ring finger topped with Cotton Candy Unicorn Dust. I have had so many people ask what I have had on my nails. My manicure is lasting around 10 days which is just amazing for my nails and when I remove my polish, my nails feel nourished and not at all dry.I have never really been able to do glitters and nail toppings, but it’s been surprisingly easy to create a salon mani at home, that lasts so long.

I’m so impressed with my Candy Coat box that I will be subscribing to the next box and getting stocked up on some new shades and glitters. I’ve never really been a fan of doing my own nails, but now I can do them properly, I’m really enjoying the freedom of being able to create super cute glittery nails in less than half an hour. Fabulous!

*Contains PR Samples

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Sleep is probably my favourite pass time. I literally count down the day for when I can get back in bed, curled up with my Thomas whilst watching a film before drifting off into the land of nod. It’s funny how you take it for granted when it doesn’t come as easy as it once did. I have struggled for years with a horrendous sleep pattern and I got to the point of just sleeping when I was tired. It was the only thing that worked for me, in order for me to function the next day. Fast forward to slipping my disc and being placed on 16 tablets of medication, and I went from an erratic sleep pattern, to not being able to keep my eyes open. It’s either one or the other, with no happy medium. Starting a job that keeps me in a routine has probably been the best thing that has happened to me. Going to bed at a reasonable time, and waking up at the same time each day has set my body into a pattern that it needed. Of course, there are times where I feel really awake and can’t switch off, but I have found the perfect accompainment to my bedtimes, and no, it’s not the Lush Sleepy – it’s way better!

For the Love of Sleep - Feather and Down

For the Love of Sleep - Feather and Down

From Feather and Down, a brand new range that has launched exclusively in Boots, this collection contains every pamper product that you can think of in order to aid a good nights sleep. After receiving one of the most beautiful PR packages, I can quite honestly say that I have used at least one of these products each night before bed. My evening routine consists of coming home from work, jumping in the shower and washing away the day. The Feather and Down Melting Shower Cream melts into a soothing and calming oil when mixed with water to leave skin feeling soft and smooth whilst leaving a relaxing scent of lavender and chamomile. The scent when mixed with a soothing rush of warm water is just heavenly, and I can’t wait to jump in the shower each night just to relieve the tension of the day.

After my shower, the Feather and Down Sweet Dreams Soothing Body Oil hits the spot. I like to use this to massage my legs, which are getting surprisingly sore from the walk from the bus stop to my office. After all those months of not being able to walk far, my muscles literally do not know what’s hit them. I’ve found that aside from the scent helping me to drift off, the five minutes I’m spending massaging my calves has greatly helped my muscle soreness and cramps in my leg.

For the Love of Sleep - Feather and Down

For the Love of Sleep - Feather and Down

For the Love of Sleep - Feather and Down

For the Love of Sleep - Feather and Down

Although the Feather and Down Sweet Dreams Sleep Balm has been designed to help with sleep, I have found that using it throughout the day has been relieving built up tension. I’m not stressed in any sense however sometimes I need a calming influence to take stock of the day and bring my mind back on track. As the balm goes on the pulse points, it does last quite a long time, and I must say that I find it a lot more effective than the Badger Balm and This Works Deep Sleep rollerball.

I have a bit of an addiction when it comes to pillow sprays, and I have built up quite a collection of different sprays. I love the fresh and clean scent that not only helps relax me, but it makes my pillows feel fresh after the previous nights sleep. The Feather and Down Sweet Dreams Pillow Spray has joined my cult favourites on my bedside table, and I find the scent of this one a lot more relaxing and subtle than some of my others. I literally spray my pillows every single night.

The first night that I received all these beautiful goodies, I used every single one of them and I was flat out within ten minutes of getting in bed. My head went all fuzzy and drowsy, and I literally couldn’t keep my eyes open. In the last few weeks where I have been using them, compared to the nights without, I miss the scent. It’s like my brain has been conditioned to feel sleepy when I am surrounded by this comforting scent.

Luckily for me, the Boots on Market Street in Manchester stocks the entire range of bath and body products, as well as home fragrance and travel kits. I’m very tempted to get the Sleep Butter for the times that I don’t want to use an oil, as well as the diffuser to place by my bedside.

It’s such a reasonably priced range, and I think it’s probably one of the most comforting routines that I have in this messy world of mine. I thoroughly recommend Feather and Down if you need a good nights sleep.

*Contains PR Samples

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Another day, another eye shadow palette. I told myself that I wasn’t going to get this whilst it was in stock on QVC on Easy Pay, but temptation took over and I went back to order it. Unfortunately, in the time I had taken to deliberate, it had gone out of stock and placed itself firmly on the wait list. Still with Easy Pay, I thought it would only be a week or two before it was back in stock and winging it’s way to my home, to join the pile of never ending eye shadow palettes. Two months. Two months I waited patiently for, sat by my emails waiting for a dispatch confirmation that my beautiful Tarte Tarteist Pro Amazonian Clay Eye shadow palette and matching Tarte fluffy brush would soon be in my possession. So, it’s safe to say that this little baby is one of my most loved palettes right now.

The Tarte Tarteist Pro Palette

The Tarte Tarteist Pro Palette

The Tarte Tarteist Pro Palette

The Tarte Tarteist Pro Palette

The Tarte Tarteist Pro Palette

A sleek matte black palette hints at the type of shadows you will find inside the Tarteist Pro palette. Upon opening the quite large palette, a selection of 16 matte shadowd and four shimmer shadows were waiting. As you can see, one of my shadows got smashed during delivery but after waiting so long for it, I wasn’t sending it back. I just used a Simple face wipe and a 10p coin to press the shadow back into the pan and clean up the mess. It’s stayed intact since so it wasn’t worth depotting the whole shadow to reset it. All the shadows in the palette are unique to Tarte, however as I only own a handful of Tarte products, I have nothing to compare them to by way of eye shadows.

I’ve found the layout of the shadows to be very easy to navigate when creating looks. The shadows on each row all work well together with the corresponding shimmer shade at the end. I have been getting quite creative in using the matte shadows to create some ultra smokey eyes and I with them being matte, I’ve been able to get quite a good spectrum of looks and styles. So far, so good. I have one Tarte eyeshadow palette from the Rainforest of the Seas collection and I do find the shadows in the Tarteist Pro to feel slightly creamier, smoother and denser when it comes to picking product up on both finger and brush.

The Tarte Tarteist Pro Palette

ethereal (bronze) glam (champagne) minx (shimmering mauve) trendy (prismatic teal)

The Tarte Tarteist Pro Palette

classic (cream) innocent (soft peach) whimsy (brick) smoked (dark brown)

The Tarte Tarteist Pro Palette

vintage (ivory) fierce (cool plum) no filter (purple mauve) vamp (deep plum)

The Tarte Tarteist Pro Palette

chic (pale pink) profesh (taupe) mod (deep cherry) drama (maroon)

The Tarte Tarteist Pro Palette

indie (greige) bold (light brown) edgy (chocolate) punk (black)

With the column of darkest shades before the shimmer shades, namely Smoked, Vamp, Drama and Punk, these are the only shades that I have slight issues with. They aren’t as pigmented as the other colours, which is a shame as they are the darkest colours, and they apply rather sheer. I do find that several sheer layers does build up the colour but they just don’t perform as I would have expected. In comparison, the shimmer shades; Ethereal, Glam, Minx and Trendy are so pigmented that they left a stain on my arm. I particularly love Trendy, even though it doesn’t look good in the pan, it’s one of the most beautiful shimmer shades that I own. It does need a bit of work to get it diffused out but it’s absolutely show stopping.

I love a matte shadow, and I think this palette has nailed it in terms of shade range and the addition of the shimmers. It’s not available on QVC at the moment, but recently Tarte keep having offers for free international postage as well as a percentage off your shopping. If you love mattes, I think you would love this palette.

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I’ve been in two minds about how to write this post because I have a real love-hate relationship with my pores. There’s no getting over the fact that we have them, and some are larger than others, but they’re there and we need to deal with them. There is no product on this earth that will make them disappear. We can do all the skincare products that we can to reduce the look of them, but they will ultimately always be there. I think as I’ve grown older, and a little bit wiser, I have come to the conclusion that my flaws should be celebrated. After all, we don’t look like the over filtered and over Facetuned images that we see on Instagram in real life. Real skin, real life, real pores. I don’t have any issue with my real skin showing. Sure, we would all love to look flawless, but for me, it’s more about enhancing the beauty and assisting with making the most of what you’ve got. I’ve pulled together a few products that I have been using lately which are all classed as pore perfecting makeup, when in fact, they’re much more than that.

Pore Perfecting Makeup

Pore Perfecting Makeup Benefit The POREfessional

Pore Perfecting Makeup Elizabeth Arden Flawless Primer

With any pore perfecting makeup, I think The POREfessional springs to mind straight away. I have been through numerous tubes of The POREfessional, and although I have tried other items from the Pore perfecting range, I always go back to the original. It has been a good friend to me over the years, and I find that it is one of the only silicone based primers that doesn’t collect oil under neath it when I’m wearing it. I use the smallest amount on my nose and cheeks, as that’s where I find my pores to be the largest and I only use it when I want a flawless base – usually when I’m going out. I do also use the Agent Zero Shine from the collection to keep my face free from oil during the day.

I really don’t give Elizabeth Arden enough credit sometimes. Yes, I cannot live without the 8 Hour range, and the Superstart Skin Renewal Booster is a miracle in a bottle, but I hardly bring it to the blog. That’s going to change, and I think after you’ve heard about the Elizabeth Arden Flawless Start Instant Perfecting Primer, you’re going to want one. The silkiest and smoothest primer that I have ever tried, it blurs out the skin in a way that you can’t place what has just happened to your skin. It’s like a veil of youthfulness. Skin is perfected, looks clear and healthy and I love to use this when I’m not wearing any makeup. Again, it evens out the skin so pores do look minimised and it also helps with fine lines. It’s probably one of the best primers that I’ve used ever, with Hourglass Veil coming behind it. A strong statement, sure but I feel this primer so much.

Pore Perfecting Makeup Clarins Pore Perfect Mattifying Foundation

Pore Perfecting Makeup Pore Perfect Mattifying Foundation

Pore Perfecting Makeup Clarins Mattifying Kit

Pore Perfecting Makeup Too Faced Primed and Poreless

New in from Clarins, the Pore Perfecting Mattifying Foundation. There has been some controversy as this has been sold as a replacement for the Ever Matte foundation, and sadly it is no where the formula or coverage. As a stand alone product I do find that with it having such a silicone based formulation that I have to use it as a primer or mixed with a mattifying lotion to make more of a liquid consistency for a foundation. It’s very thick on it’s own, and it really does do the job but I don’t look at it as a foundation, more of a tinted primer. It definitely works in terms of blurring out skin tone and making skin look even but as a foundation, I wouldn’t recommend. It’s such a shame really as the red clay formula really has an impact in minimising oil. It definitely depends on how you use it.

An absolute winner from Clarins is the Pore Perfecting Mattifying Kit. This little beauty has been my handbags best friend, and whilst we have been having this muggy warm weather, I’ve found that I have been getting the most horribly wet face when I’ve been out and about. It’s horrible isn’t it? White clay translucent powder can be used to set the face back in place, whilst the handy fragrance and powder free blotting papers hidden under the cosmetic sponge mattifying without disturbing makeup. The blotting papers are a lot nicer than the little book of blot papers that I used to keep in my school blazer pocket. I think they used to be from The Body Shop and they smelt all powdery like old ladies. It’s a definite buy from me.

The Too Faced Primed and Poreless pressed powder is another winning product. I’ve spoken about my love of the Too Faced Born This Way foundation, and I love to pair it with Primed and Poreless. A multi use pressed powder that can be used underneath foundation as a primer, a setting powder, alone without makeup or for bringing life back into worn in makeup. It has that candlelight glow effect that smooths out skin with a soft focus, and minimises pores and imperfections.

With each and every one of these products, I find that the skin smoothing properties of them rank much higher than wanting to make my pores look diminished. It’s the soft focus and blurring effect that I’m ultimately after, and I think any one of these products does have that effect. I’m totally crushing on the Clarins Kit and the Too Faced Primed and Poreless. Definite makeup bag essentials.

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