Sunday, 21 October 2012

Sunday Night X Factor Pamper!

I typically spend my Sunday evenings watching X Factor and TOWIE, drinking hot choc and having a bit of a pamper! So I thought I would let you know what my standard beauty routine is when I'm cuddled up on the sofa!


First thing I do is splash my face with water (as I don't usually wear make up on Sundays) and pop on my Sanctuary clay mask, see my review of this here! I then slick on my Burts Bees Honey lip balm, I easily suffer from dry lips and this balm is my absolute favourite. You can pick it up for £3 on feelunique or in Boots. I then paint my fingers and toes, this week I went for  Essie Skirting the Issues on my tootsies and Essie Topless & Barefoot on my fingers, with the Champneys top coat over both. Once dry I slather on Soap and Glory Heels Genius, which was in my September Favs and pop on some fluffy socks. I then spend most of my evening massaging Soap & Glory Hand Food into my hands!

What is your Sunday night sofa routine?


Thursday, 4 October 2012

September Favourites!




September is over and it's been a bit of a hectic month for me! I've started a new job, moved in with my boyfriend and gone on holiday! I'm now looking forward to a much more chilled out October complete with lots of cosy nights in, and lots of long-awaited pampering! Here are a few products I've been loving in the month of September:

Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb, Liz Earle Limited Edition Cleanse & Polish, Dior Addict Diorkiss and Stila In The Light

First up is Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb which I have written about before. I adore this perfume, the smell makes me feel cosy and sexy all at once! You just have to go and smell it to understand. I also have been loving the Liz Earle Prince's Trust Special Edition Cleanse & Polish which I have also reviewed. My skin has been feeling really sensitive and dehydrated recently and the lavender and chamomile in this cleanser is so gentle and soothing on it.

                                                         Diorkiss                                                                              In The Light

Make-up wise I have been loving the Dior Addict lipstick in Diorkiss 578. This is a sheer glossy, balm-like lipstick that is really easy to wear and nourishing on the lips. I love the colour for September as it is the perfect transitional colour from Summer to Autumn. It is a gorgeous bright pink with rosey undertones. My final make up choice is Stila In The Light palette which has a wonderful mixture of matte and shimmery tones that are so soft and easy to apply. There is a great mix of day and evening shades, I took this palette on holiday with me and it had everything I needed. This palette has also been a great quick fix in the morning when I'm in a rush for work!
                            Soap & Glory Heel Genius, Nails Inc Basil Street and Origins Drink Up Intensive Mask

I have been loving the Origins Drink Up Intensive mask this month, I first started using it on holiday to soothe my skin after a day in the sun and it worked wonders! Since returning I've been a bit under the weather and my skin has been rather stressed, I find if I put this mask on at night I wake up in the morning and its soothed and soft. Lovely! This Soap & Glory Heels Genius foot cream has been pulled out the draw again this month, I massage this blue gel into my feet at night after a shower, pop on some socks and wake up to find baby soft tootsies. Finally my nail polish pick this month is Nails Inc Basil Street, it is a gorgeous nudey neutral that is perfect for this season and great for work.

                                                       Heels Genius                                                                      Basil Street

I have discovered lots of wonderful new products this month but don't think I've given them a thorough enough testing yet to include in my faves but expect lots of reviews soon! If you would like me to give an individual review on any of the above products please let me know. I hope you had a wonderful September and are looking forward to the month ahead!


What are your favourite products this month? Have you tried any of these, what are your thoughts?

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Review: Liz Earle Prince's Trust Limited Edition Rose and Lavender Cleanse & Polish

When I first heard about this product, I was beyond excited!! I adore the Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish and I LOVE rose beauty products so this is a match made in heaven for me!


Liz Earle have brought out this Special Edition cleanser in conjunction with their current work with The Prince's Trust. This product has been created through a collaboration between Liz Earle and her Prince's Trust mentee, Rebeca Taylor, for the Tomorrow Campaign. The Tomorrow Campaign was created to inspire the next generation and paired six Trust-supported young people with iconic mentors to create a product that will be retailed nationwide to raise funds for The Prince’s Trust. The outcome is an exceptional product, giving a floral twist to a much-loved beauty essential. Furthermore it's all in the name of charity, Liz Earle are donating £2 from each purchase towards The Prince's Trust.

If you are not familiar with the original Cleanse & Polish, it is a cream based cleanser that is applied to a dry face in circular motions and removed with a hot muslin cloth. It easily wipes away daily grime and removes all make up, including eye make up. The skin is left smooth, soft and exceptionally clean. It is suited to all skin types and is simply a beautiful, beautiful product.



This updated Special Edition cleanser comes in a simple white pump bottle with a pretty pink and purple design, which distinguishes it from the original blue tube. The product still has the same ingredients that has made this an award-winning cleanser, including skin softening cocoa butter and rosemary and chamomile to tone and smooth. However this new cleanser includes rose and lavender essential oils, making it perfect for night time use. Liz says, "a unique blend of rose and lavender essential oils to calm and relax your senses, ideal for use to ensure a good night’s sleep. Perfect partners; use our original Cleanse & Polish in the morning and our Special Edition in the evenings."

This product is currently retailing at £19.75 for a 150ml tube
It is available from Liz Earle Stores, the Customer Centre on 01983 813913, lizearle.com, John Lewis, and on QVC


Have you tried this Special Edition cleanser? How do you think it compares to the original?


Sunday, 23 September 2012

Duty Free Shopping!!

One of the things I look forward to most about going on holiday, apart from the sun tan, cocktails and beachy hair, is duty free!! This year was no different and I picked up a few sneaky purchases on the way through departures.


The first place I stopped off was the MAC counter and picked up a few products I had my eye on for a while and one cheeky impulse buy! The first was MAC Charcoal Brown eyeshadow which is a matte light brown shade that I use to fill in my eyebrows. This eyeshadow has been recommended by numerous beauty gurus with similar colouring to myself and so far I've been very content with my purchase. Nothing to write home about but it does the job well!


Next up I got MAC Sable which is a lovely plummy brown shade! It often wear this to work with MAC All That Glitters as a nudey duo for daytime. Alternatively put it with MAC Joy and Laughter (review below) for a glammed up evening look. This eye shadow is a frost finish, with amazing pigmentation and glides smoothly onto the lid meaning it is super easy to apply. I think this is one of those must-have MAC shades that everyone needs in their make up bag!


The final eye shadow I got was MAC Joy and Laughter. This shadow is a Mineralise Duo eyeshadow which came out this year in the permanent collection. Joy and Laughter contains a cool-toned shimmery lilac shade paired with a softer grey-mauve shimmery shade. You can use this as a duo with the cool-toned shade over the whole lid and they grey-mauve shade in the crease or you can swirl a brush round and swipe it all over the lid and put Sable in the crease. On the swatch the mixture is on the left, the darker shade in the middle and the lighter on the right. I don't usually go for purple shades but I absolutely fell for this! The pigmentation is incredible, you only need to lightly dust your brush in the product to pick up the perfect amount. The shadow is super soft and silky and is a dream to apply. I really liked Love Connection as well, but they didn't have any in stock so I'm definitely going to pick that up on my next MAC trip!


My final MAC purchase was the Painterly paint pot. This is my first paint pot purchase (try saying that out loud!) I own a few of the Maybelline Colour Tatoos and love them but they don't do a good nude shade so I decided to indulge. So far I have been more than happy with my purchase and have been wearing it almost every day for work! It is a flesh-tone shade with a matte formula. The product comes in a glass jar, making it unsuitable for travel but it does give it a hint of luxury! FYI I have heard these can dry out very easily if you leave the lid off. I have very oily eyelids so a base is essential to ensure my eyeshadows stay put all day. If I'm tired my eyelids also become quite dark and this completely disguises this. This is another product that I think you NEED in your make up bag!


I then ventured over to the skincare area and after some serious self-restraint only picked up this Clinique Anti-Blemish Clearing Moisturiser. I am now onto my fourth repurchase of this product, and really enjoy using it. I have quite problematic skin on my T-zone and if I use a heavy moisturiser here my skin will break out, guaranteed! This product is oil-free and very lightweight so useless for those dry skinned bunnies out there, but perfect for those of us with oilier skin. I'm unsure whether this treats existing blemishes but it definitely prevents further breakouts. I put this on in the morning before my make up, as anything heavier will mean by make up slides straight off. However in the evening i use a more heavy-duty moisturiser/serum! The only downside with this product is it doesn't contain SPF but I have factor 30 in my BB cream so not a problem for me.


The finale of this shopping trip was Victor and Rolf Flowerbomb perfume! This was actually a gift from my lovely brother for my birthday. I have wanted this ever since I sniffed my best friend (not as weird as it sounds!) at a party last Christmas and fell in love! This perfume is utterly DELICIOUS, there is not other word to describe it! Well maybe there is, and as I am pretty hopeless at describing scents this is what the website says "Full-bodied and opulent, the Eau de Parfum explodes in a bouquet of sensations with its addictive floral notes which leave their trail, like a whirlwind that is distinctly couture. A millefleurs around the freesia, Centifolia rose, osmanthus and Sambac jasmine, supported by a background of patchouli." If that description doesn't make you want to go try it out I don't know what will! The bottle is cut like a multi-faceted diamond, it is gorgeous, simple and classic. So please I implore you to go to your nearest fragrance counter and try this out, you can thank me later!



Please comment below with what products have you picked up in duty free this Summer?



Tuesday, 4 September 2012

In-Flight Beauty Routine

I'm on holiday right now, yaaaaay for me! Now enough of my smugness and on to the important stuff! Everyone loves going on holiday somewhere exotic but long haul flights come at a price! And not just on your wallet! Dehydrated skin, puffy eyes and frizzy, dried-out hair are not ideal when you want to step off the plane a la Victoria Beckham. After avidly watching Lisa Eldridge's YouTube video on her in flight beauty routine with pen and paper, I devised my own!


the-best-plane-beauty-products



I picked up this clear travel bag from Primark for a few pounds complete with 3 100ml bottles and 3 small pots. Much cheaper than the Muji option! (I'm using hotel Wifi on an iPad at the moment and my picture won't upload!)  Here's a run down of what I took with me: Macademia Healing oil, hair tie, No7 cleansing water for oily skin, Origins drink up intensive mask, Lancôme hydra zen eye contour gel cream, Elizabeth Arden eight hour cream, Elizabeth Arden eight hour hand treatment, No7 day cream for oily skin, Boots nail remover pads, Topshop clear base and top coat, Essie lovie dovie nail varnish  and a couple of cotton pads. And yes all that fits in this little bag, just call me Mary Poppins! 


Hair

First thing I do when I get on the plane is to brush my hair and then run a small amount of macadamia oil through my hair! I mainly focus on the ends as these are driest and use sparingly in my roots. I wouldn't usually use a hair oil on dry hair as I have quite oily hair but I don't mind it looking a bit greasy on the plane and I'll have a shower as soon as I get to my hotel. This will stop the dry cabin air turning it into frizz central and drying it out too much.  I then tie it up for the duration of the flight. This stops it tangling and rubbing up against the seats causing static. 

Face

To prep my skin for the flight I run a cotton pad with No7 cleansing water over my face. I don't tend to wear make up to the airport, as.. well.. I can't really be bothered! So this step is just to freshen up and remove any excess oil etc. I then massage a small amount of my Origins drink up mask into my skin, once I've done this I wait five minutes for it to sink in and then repeat again till I've built up three layers of product. This mask sinks into the skin easily so it is necessary to repeat this process to build up a thick layer of coverage. This mask seriously hydrates the skin and provides a barrier against the dry cabin air, leaving your skin plump and glowing. I then leave this on for the duration of the flight, reapplying every 3-4 hours. The mask is clear once you massage it in so you don't look ridiculous don't worry!

I then pat my Lancôme hydra zen eye cream below my eye, reapplying alongside the mask. This eye cream helps with puffiness and fatigue so it should disguise and signs of early morning flights and dehydration. Before landing I remove any traces of the mask with my cleansing water and moisturise with my No7 day cream. This moisturiser also contains  SPF to protect my skin from the sun as soon as I step off the plane. I use my Elizabeth Arden eight hour cream on my lips constantly throughout the flight to top the air con drying them out.

Nails

As well as giving myself a mini facial mid flight I also take the opportunity to give myself a manicure. So yes, much to my family's embarrassment I practically turn the plane into a spa! Next step and I'll be putting a foot spa in my hand luggage! Pahh! Anyways, I use my Elizabeth Arden eight hour hand cream a bazillion times throughout the flight, mainly due to boredom. I also massage my eight hour cream into my nails, to soften my cuticles and nourish the skin around my nails! I use Topshop base/top coat and I've chosen to wear Essie's Lovie Dovie this holiday, one of my favourite varnishes this summer!  I've also packed nail varnish remover pads in case of any mishaps!

So that's it! This routine seems to have worked so I shall be going through the whole palaver on the journey home. At least it keeps me entertained :) Also remember to drink LOADS of water as you need to hydrate the body from the inside out too!

Please comment below with any inflight beauty tips you have! 



Sunday, 26 August 2012

Get To Know Me :)



Is there anything in life you would like to accomplish that you haven't yet? 
I'm only 22, so there are SO many more things I want to accomplish!! Seeing more of the world is a big one though!!

How do you like to relax? 
Bubble baths with all my favourite products, watching a DVD with my boyfriend, coffee with girlfriends, walks with my dog!!

What was your last major purchase?
I am currently saving for travelling next year so no major purchases, but I did put a Topshop order in the other night! Post to come soon :)

What can you cook very well? 
Thai green curry is my favourite dish to cook! I did a Thai cookery course in Thailand last year so consider myself a bit of a pro ;)

What is your favorite holiday and why? 
CHRISTMAS!! I adore Christmas - the food, the drink, the presents, the knitwear, the family :) 

What is one tv show that you really don't like? 
Jersey Shore or Geordie Shore - just no!

If given a million dollars, what is the first thing you would do with it? 
Take all my friends and family on a month long holiday somewhere exotic!!

What kind of people do you like being around? 
Good people! Sounds obvious, but I try surround myself with good people with good hearts who do good things! Simple!

What is your one embarrassing moment? 
I probably have loads, but I don't really get embarassed that easily!

How tall/short are you?
I'm pretty tall - about 5 '9 1/2

Last thing you ate? 
Sunday roast :) wooop!! Roast beef and yorkshire puds!

Would you ever leave the house without makeup on? 
Definitely, I do it all the time!

Heels or flats? 
I love heels, but as I'm tall I tend to wear flats more!

Please do this tag yourself in the comments below, so I can get to know you too :)

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Elemis Balancing Lavender Toner Review

I originally bought this in January and it was the first toner I purchased since my teens! I never really saw the point, but it was in my New Year's Resolutions to incorporate more steps into my skincare routine so I decided to give one a go. I have combination, sensitive skin that is prone to the odd blemish so I was looking for a toner to suit these needs. This toner was recommended by Tanya Burr of pixi2woo so I couldn't say no!

This product is great for combination skin as it rebalances the skin's pH levels, giving a more even skin tone, and reduces oiliness. It does not contain any alcohol or harsh chemicals, which is a must for sensitive skin! This also means it is not stripping my skin any of any of its natural oils, which many products combating oiliness do. This can cause the skin to produce more oil, which leads to breakouts!

Elemis Lavender Toner

The product comes in a clear, plastic bottle with a metal and plastic top. The lid is also plastic, however mine has gone walkies! The bottle is a thick plastic so it feels nice and firm to hold and has a matte finish. I love the spray dispenser, which means this product can be used as a toner or a facial spritzer!

I use this product every morning when I wake up as a refreshing spritzer after I have washed my face. In the evening, I use 2-3 sprays on a cotton pad and run it all over my face, down my neck and décolletage after a thorough cleanse. This removes any residue left on the skin after cleansing, reduces oiliness and softens my skin. The scent is just lovely,  the lavender makes this a wonderfully relaxing product to use and like all Elemis products it has a distinctive 'spa smell'. It always makes me feel ready for bed when I use it in the evening. 

I have repurchased this product twice since Christmas and am currently half way through my third bottle. I don't think this product is ground-breaking, but I like the effect it has my skin and it is a very pleasant product to use. 

This product typically retails at £19.40 for a 200ml bottle!
feelunique are currently selling it for £15.52 with 20% off in their sale!
SalonSkincare are selling it for £16.95!
Both these are with free shipping!


Do you use a toner in your skincare routine? Please comment below if you can recommend a new toner for me to try!

Jo Malone Lime, Basil & Mandarin Body & Hand Lotion

I had a lovely surprise last year when a gorgeous Jo Malone box appeared on my 21st birthday! I hadn't asked for anything from them so was very surprised to find a big bottle of this body and hand lotion  tucked away within the box! As a student (now a graduate) the price tag for this body lotion was waaay out of my price range so it was exactly what the perfect gift should be, something you wouldn't buy yourself. 

This product is just D-I-VINE!! It is a wonderful, luxurious product that I use sparingly, date nights and special occasions only! Thanks to this rationing, I have just under half left :)

The product comes in minimalistic packaging with a clear plastic bottle with a black lid. I love the Jo Malone packaging, it is so simple and chic! The dispenser makes it easy to use, so none of the shaking and squeezing that often comes with body lotions!

Jo Malone body lotion

Jo Malone body lotion


Now onto the important stuff - this smells INCREDIBLE! The overriding scents are citrus based thanks to the lime and mandarin, which makes it lovely and refreshing! I love putting this on when I get out of the shower to wake me up. There are also herby, earthy notes, from the basil, which tones down the zinginess and makes this lotion utterly delicious to use.

The product has a light-weight forumla and blends into the skin very easily. As you can see from the photographs below, once you begin to massage this into the skin, it turns clear and thins out, allowing it to sink into the skin quickly. No greasy residue is left behind, your skin just feels gorgeously soft. This means you can get dressed straight away which is a huge positive for me as I hate having to hang around while my moisturiser sinks in!





The scent lasts on the skin very well, which you would expect from a luxury product. It is also quite strong, which for me I love, as if I'm going to spend money on an expensive product I want people around me to be able to smell the scent. Especially when it smells this good!

Despite the hefty price tag at £38 for 250ml - I WOULD repurchase this with my own money! I'm also keen to try out some of their other scents. I currently have my eye on the Wild Bluebell!

You can purchase this product from the Jo Malone website and you can also buy it in a 100ml bottle for £19 if you want to sample a smaller size or for travel!

Please comment below what your favourite Jo Malone scents are!


Friday, 24 August 2012

Sanctuary 5 Minute Thermal Detox Mask Review

I have quite congested skin, prone to the odd blemish and if I don't look after it, it has a tendency to look dull! Thus the obvious solution is a deep cleanse, as I can't afford the facial option I opted for this Sanctuary mask which I picked up from Boots!

It comes in a 100ml squeezy tube and you get a lot of product! I have been using it once a week for a few months now and have over half left. This mask is a very luxurious product for a drugstore purchase. It is a self-heating mask so as soon as you massage it into the skin it warms up. This opens up the pores to make it easier for the charcoal and kaolin clay in the mask to draw those pesky impurities out! This does not harden, unlike other clay masks, so it doesn't crack or feel uncomfortable. The product also claims to rebalance your skin's oil levels leaving it silky smooth and soothed. I definitely agree with this as my skin looks smoother and has a matte-finish after use.

Sanctuary mask

I typically use this product on a Sunday night when I am doing a full pamper session. This is such a lovely product to use before bedtime, as the scent and the heat of the mask makes me so sleepy!

To use this product, I first cleanse my skin thoroughly, removing all my make up. I then slightly wet my face as I think this makes the product easier to blend over the skin. I typically take two squeezes and massage it all over my face and sometimes down my neck and décolletage. The mask will then heat up and you must wait till its cooled before removing, they suggests to leave it on for 5 minutes but I typically leave it on for 15-20! I then use a muslin cloth to remove it with warm water.

Sanctuary thermal detox mask

Be warned this product is very very effective so if you have any spots beneath the surface they will be drawn to the top. This is why I typically use it on a Sunday so my skin is clear by the weekend. Remember though, these spots are going to appear whether you help draw them out or not, so it's better to do in a controlled manner, so they aren't popping up the day of your hot date or important meeting! Also if you keep up using the mask regularly all your impurities will be drawn out leaving your skin clear!

I think this product is well worth its £10.20 price tag and is easily available in your local Boots store. It is currently included in their 3 for 2 offer on No 7 and 'indulgent bathing' products!

I have tried a number of charcoal masks and this is the best yet! It has stayed permanently in my skincare routine for a number of months now so I know it's a keeper!!

Please comment below if you have used this product and what you think, or if you think my Sanctuary mask might have some competition!

Macademia Healing Oil Treatment Review

I have been looking at purchasing a hair oil for a while now, but found it difficult to find one that would suit my hair type. I have fine, straight hair but lots of it! My hair cannot take heavy product as it gets weighed down very easily. I have been noticing that my ends were becoming dry and brittle and thought a hair oil would be the most suitable product to fix this.

I found the Macademia Healing Oil on Buyapowa and after reading a few reviews decided to take the plunge! And I LOVE it!! 

This is what the product claims to do:
- Provide intense nourishment, smooth and long-lasting, frizz free hair
- Instant absorption and a lightweright, non-greasy finish
- Reduce colour fading, therefore extending the life of colour treatments
- Provide natural UV protection
- Reduce drying time by 40-50%

 This is what I think:

Macademia healing oil

The 125ml oil comes in a glass bottle, which adds a little luxury! It also comes with a pump for easy dispensing. I use about half a pump every time I wash my hair. After washing and brushing my hair I rub the product in my hands before evenly running it through the ends of my hair (from about my ear down). It is a very lightweight formula so doesn't weigh my hair down at all. The smell is AMAZING, I don't think it smells nutty at all, the only way I can think to describe it is a musky scent mixed with a 'spa' smell!! 


It leaves my hair soft and gorgeous to touch without being greasy. I can easily wash my hair every other day with this product in. It also makes it a lot easier to style as my hair has less frizz and fly-aways! Unlike other oils I have tried it does not weigh it down so if I want to curl it or put more volume in my hair it will still stay put!

I paid £10.50 for a 125ml bottle on Buyapowa so a huge saving on the RRP which is £29.95! But I would be willing to repurchase this at full price!

CheapSmells is currently selling this product for £14.75

You can buy this product in a variety of sizes, which is great if you want to sample a smaller size before purchasing a big bottle.

This product is going to be a staple in my hair care routine and I HIGHLY recommend it!!


If you have any hair oils you would recommend please comment below :)