Monday, 15 December 2014

Christmas Gift Guide - Under £100

These blusher/highlighter hybrids leave cheeks with a natural looking flush that never looks overdone. These's also a great selection of shades and the packaging is beautiful. Almost to pretty to use! 

I love rings with delicate bands, they look so flattering when worn. This one would work equally well with a jeans and tee as it would with an evening dress. 

A plain black jumper is a staple in everyone's wardrobe but why not get someone a really nice quality one that will last. This cozy mohair one from whistles is really well made and feels a little bit more luxe.

What would a p&p gift guide be without a delicate gold necklace? This one has a pretty rectangular agate and would make a great addition to anyone's jewellery collection.

Jo Malone fragrances are such a luxury, and when combined the possibilities are endless. I think a lot of people would love the idea of being able to wear their own unique scent, this mini cologne set would be a great way to do that. It's also a great way of trying a few of their scents before investing in a full sized bottle.

I love the bright royal blue shade of this little bag, perfect for stuffing with makeup and 'girlie stuff' and throwing into your handbag.

This is definitely a palette that any beauty addict will swoon over, it has a selection of 6 eyeshadows, a lipstick, a lip gloss, a blusher and a face powder all in a beautiful zip up wallet. 

Cosy winter warmers always go down well at christmas and this cashmere snood would be a real treat. The neutral knit and colour means it will be worn and loved for many winters to come.

This skincare set is definitely one for someone who already loves high end skincare but wants to try something even more special. It has a great range of their most popular products and is a great way to try them all before investing in the (very expensive) full sized versions!

This beautiful, limited edition candle has notes of white neroli, mimosa and lemon as well as freshly cut grass. Perhaps not the most seasonally appropriate but the ceramic vessel and 18k gold guilding designed by Jenny Packham is just to good too pass up!

I hope you liked this gift guide, if you fancy seeing my under £50 and under £25 edits you can see them here and here. Have any of these items made their way onto your wish list? 

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Sunday, 14 December 2014

Christmas Gift Guide - Under £50

This brilliant little lip crayon set contains 2 velvet matte lip pencils and 3 satin lip pencils, both have excellent formulas and lasting power. There's a great mix of shades that any makeup lover would be very happy with. Alternatively you could always split the set up and use the individual pencils as stocking fillers/mini presents, a great budget option as if you buy the set they work out to just £6.40 each!

Kate Spade do lovely accessories and this laptop sleeve is no exception. To me the white polka dots on a black background strike the perfect balance between chic and sophisticated and cute and girly! Just make sure it's the right size for the recipient's laptop!

It's always nice to receive a good pair of pyjamas, especially when they feel a bit luxe. These ones are 100% cotton, feel super soft and have such a beautiful lace print that's right up my street. Make sure you click though so you can have a look at the print close up, this picture really doesn't do them justice! 

When it comes to handbags, I like mine black, minimal, boxy and with gold hardware. This one fits the bill exactly and would be liked by most people as it's such a classic design that would go with any outfit. A particularly good choice for a professional or anyone who likes to look smart.

This is a product that every beauty lover either already has and loves or really wants. It's a classic for a reason, it's most people's favourite eyeshadow palette! Also a great option for someone who's just getting into makeup.

These bath oils are wonderful for anyone who loves a bath, they're just so incredibly potent. You only need a few drops and the entire bathroom is filled with the wonderful scent. The bottles may look small but you actually get quite a few uses out of them. This set is a great way to try lots of their fragrances rather than having to chose just one.

I love these skincare trial sets that brands bring out at christmas, they're such a great way to try out lots of high end skincare without having to part with lots of cash. This set would be great for anyone but particularly those with sensitivity. I've previously had full sizes of 3 out of the 4 products and thought they were fantastic. 

Have I mentioned I like delicate, understated jewellery? Maybe a few (hundred) times! This piece is particularly beautiful, it's a great choice if you want to give something that can be kept and treasured forever but don't have a massive budget. It's a great price considering it's gold plated and has a semi precious stone.

This would definitely be the ultimate gift for a stationary lover. The notebook is beautifully bound in leather embossed with an elegant Art Nouveau Liberty design. It also comes in lots of other colours and designs. 

I love scented candles at this time of the year, particularly with the christmas tree up, a hot drink in one hand and a good book in the other. This is one of Diptyque's limited edition christmas offerings and it smells of candied plums, cinnamon and nutmeg, absolute perfection! Of course any Diptyque candle would make an exceptional gift but I think this one looks extra special in the festive red and gold jar.

I hope you liked my gift selection, if you want to see my under £25 guide you can see that here. Will anything from this guide be making it's way onto your wish list?

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Friday, 12 December 2014

Christmas Gift Guide - Under £25

I couldn't believe the value of this set when I spotted it! It contains a selection of 8 Ren products in mini form. Great if you want to introduce someone to the brand but don't want to just give them one product.

This beautifully scented candle contains notes of cinnamon, clove and orange and comes in a beautifully chic and minimal glass jar. 

This oversized scarf looks so warm and cozy, perfect for this bitingly cold weather. Plus the dark oxblood shade is one that anyone would love.

It's always nice to gift jewellery as it's not always something that people like to buy for themselves. This gold square necklace is so understated and simple it would work with almost any outfit.

Fragrance seems to be such a popular gift at christmas time, surprisingly as most people are very sure of what they do and don't like. This set would be a good option as it gives them a chance to try a few, there's nothing worse than receiving a massive bottle of perfume that you don't really like, especially since they don't come cheap! It's also something a little different to the perfumes you usually see around the highstreet at christmas time. 

Every beauty lover loves a good neutral eyeshadow palette and this is definitely the best one on the high street. A great option, both for someone who is just getting into makeup or someone who is a complete palette hoarder! 

Soap & Glory do brilliant bath and body products and there isn't a single dud in this set. It contains lots of my previously used and loved products and is excellent value for money. 

In my opinion, you just can't beat Essie polishes. They have the best colour range, brush and formula hands down. This set contains best selling shades Mademoiselle and Chinchilly as well as a couple of sparkly festive numbers. 

Skincare can be an expensive thing to invest in, it's always nice to be able to try before you buy. This set has everything you need for a good starter routine. Great for someone just getting into high end skincare or wanting to try a few bits from the brand.

Another pretty, minimal, gold necklace. I struggled to choose between the two! This one would look great with just a plain black T-shirt and jeans. 

I hope you liked this gift guide! Will any of these item's be making their way onto your list? Look out for my under £50 gift guide coming next!

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Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Current Favourites

As you've probably noticed, I've been a bit late getting together my november favourites. I thought about scrapping the post all together but then decided last minute to rename it 'current favourites' instead! Here's what I've been loving.

I still can't believe it's taken me so long to get a tangle teezer. I got mine about a month ago and it has quickly become an essential. I'm starting to wonder what I ever did without it! 

I've noticed that my skin has become a lot drier in the last few weeks because of the horribly cold weather so I've had to take my skincare up a notch. I've been using The Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil (full review here) both in the morning and evening rather than just in the evening as I had been doing previously. I've also been using the Time Bomb Youth Juice Secret Oil (full review here) every night and on no makeup days. I've found that using more oil has been amazingly helpful with keeping moisture in my skin and keeping dry patches at bay. 

Another skincare love is the Rodial Dragon's Blood Hyaluronic Tonic, an amazingly hydrating spritz on 'toner' that I've been using both morning and night post cleanse. It has a lovely subtle scent of roses thanks to the rose water it contains and is a great product to stop skin from getting dehydrated. Full review coming soon! 

I've been keeping things pretty simple on the makeup front recently. I recently bought the Estee Lauder Pure Colour Shadow Paint in Chained and I've been wearing it almost everyday since. It's a great everyday shade that is so quick and easy to apply. 

Another recent purchase is the Smashbox Full Exposer Mascara, I wasn't completely sold on it when I first started using it as it was a bit wet but now that I'm a couple of weeks in and it's dried out a bit I absolutely love it. It adds lots of volume and length and is quickly becoming one of my favourite ever mascaras. 

What beauty products have you been loving recently?

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Monday, 8 December 2014

Beauty Haul!

It's been a while since I shared my beauty purchases here on the blog and over the last couple of months I seem to have accumulated quite a few new things so I thought I'd do a haul post. Here's what I got!

After hearing a lot about the Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvets I decided to give a tester a try, it lasted all day long without fading so I decided to go back and pick up 3 shades, Ole Flamingo, a warm toned fuscia, hot pepper, a bright, true red and Grand Cru a burgundy shade. They're a matte liquid lipstick formula and I'm completely blown away by them. A full review is in the works! 

I also got a blue and white stripy makeup bag which was only £8 from Boots, I love the stripes and the way they contrast with the bright coral zip, plus it's the perfect size to throw into my handbag for on the go touch ups.

I'm not a huge powder wearer, I only ever have one on the go so when my MAC Studio Fix finished I wanted to get something to replace it. I found Studio Fix far too heavy for my liking so decided to get Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder as I heard it's super lightweight and very finely milled. 

I got a set of mini Estee Lauder fragrances as a gift a while ago and the one that I was instantly drawn to was Beyond Paradise, it's just so different to any fragrances I'd smelt before. I really missed using it when it was finished so it wasn't long before I picked myself up a full sized bottle. 

I've always loved aromatherapy products and had trouble sleeping so I thought I'd finally give a couple of products from This Works a go. This duo contains a mini Deep Calm Pillow Spray and Breathe In rollerball. 

I'd been coveting the Smashbox Full Exposer Palette for the longest time so I finally caved and decided to get it, I thought it was the perfect time of year for it as it contains lots of party friendly shimmery shades as well as a good range of mattes. I also got the Estee Lauder Pure Colour Shadow Paint in Chained, it's a great, easy to use, wear everyday kind of shade. As you can see I've used it quite a bit already and I love it!

I was in need of a new mascara so I decided to give the Smashbox Full Exposer Mascara a go, purely  because I liked the look of the brush and I was already at the counter getting the palette!

I also invested in a couple of new haircare tools, I finally got round to getting a Tangle Teezer and I'm so glad I did, I have no idea why it took me so long to jump onto that bandwagon! My old round blowdrying brush had seen better days, I'd used it for so long that most of the bristles had flattened down and when the handle broke off I knew it was time for a new one! I went for the Remington brush because it seemed to have the firmest bristles of all the brushes in boots. 

I hope you enjoyed seeing my new purchases! I'll be sure to do full reviews once I've been using them a bit longer. Have you bought any new beauty products recently? 

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Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Time Bomb Youth Juice Secret Oil

I've always loved using facial oils, they balance combination and oily skin and add much needed moisture to dry skins while being such a pleasure to use. The Time Bomb Youth Juice Secret Oil is no exception, it boasts great ingredients, a blend of 10 natural oils such as olive, avocado and jojoba which have been blended to closely replicate the skin's natural sebum. 

I've been using it for about 6 weeks now and it's managed to keep dry, sensitive, winter skin at bay. My skin feels soft and healthy, which is very unusual for me at this time of year! I've been using it 2-3 times a week and I don't ever feel like it's too greasy or that it just sits on the skin. It always sinks right in and smells of lavender which makes it very relaxing to use last thing at night. 

If I was being really fussy I'd have to say that my one issue with it is the packaging. There is no pump or pipette dispenser like other oils, just an open 'pour' top which almost always means product ends up getting wasted. The thin plastic bottle and lid also feels a little disappointing compared to other oils in this price range which would usually come in a glass bottle. That said you do get a whopping 60ml of product rather than the usual 30ml so I guess you win some, you lose some! All in all it's a great product, definitely worth a try!

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Friday, 7 November 2014

October Favourites

There are only a few new products that I've been loving this month, the others are mostly rediscovered old favourites. I've been trying to take really good care of my skin recently. I find the change in the weather at this time of year always wrecks havoc on my skin so I've been attempting to keep any dryness, dehydration and sensitivity at bay.

I've been continuing to use my Rodial Dragon's Blood Hyaluronic Night Cream which you can see my full review of here. I still think it's the best night cream I've ever tried, plus I opened this tub mid june and still have a fair bit left. I've also added Time Bomb Youth Juice Secret Oil into my routine, it's a lovely facial oil that I've been using a few times a week, either on at home, no makeup days or in the evenings. A full review is in the works!

Makeup wise I've been keeping things relatively simple. I've been favouring a winged, liquid liner over eyeshadow as it's quicker and easier for me to apply and doesn't involve too much thought first thing in the morning. The Avon Super Extend Liquid Liner has been my weapon of choice as it's so easy to use. It has a felt tip style applicator and is pigmented enough to look jet black in one swipe. 

I've also got back into using my Bobbi Brown Corrector in Dark Peach to cover dark circles, again because it's so easy to use. I usually just pat it onto any dark areas with my finger and blend. My lips have been feeling a little bit on the dry side but I've not wanted to compromise on wearing colour so the By Terry Baume de Rose Nutri-Couleur in Cherry Bomb has come in handy. It's a super moisturising, rose scented lip balm with a red tint to it. I love the shade and the sheer finish means I can apply it without a mirror!

What have you been loving this month?

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Monday, 3 November 2014

#ManiMonday Illamasqua Baptiste

I feel like it's been quite a long time since my last nail post, but fear not, they've not been forgotten! I've been wearing Illamasqua Nail Varnish in Baptiste repeatedly over the last few weeks, everytime it chips I find myself removing and reapplying it, quite rare for me as I have such a vast nail varnish collection! I just love the shade, it's a rich deep violet with a subtle pink iridescence running through it, the picture really doesn't do it justice! The wear time is pretty good, I get between 4-5 days without chips if I use it with a good base/top coat and the formula is very opaque so I just need 1-2 coats. I think I'll be continuing to wear this shade for the next few weeks till I get bored of it/till I find another colour that I love even more! What have you been wearing on your nails lately?

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Friday, 24 October 2014

Empties #10

I know, I know, it's been a while. Things have been super busy but I assure you I've not fallen off the face of the earth! I'm back with a nice long empties post to make up for it! As usual I'll be talking about all the products I've used up, what I thought of them and most importantly, whether or not I'll be repurchasing them!

Anatomicals Spray Misty For Me

This moisturising facial mist was given to me by a friend who wasn't too keen on it. I enjoyed using it as a toner but I definitely still prefer the Caudalie Beauty Elixir. Repurchase? No.

A lovely cream cleanser that feels a lot more expensive than it's £4 price tag. Equally good to use in the morning as in the evening to remove makeup. Repurchase? Yes.

I'm not much of a powder wearer anyway but I particularly disliked this one, I found it to be far too heavy and cakey for my liking. It was such a pain to use up! Repurchse? No.

Another product I didn't get on too well with. It wasn't terrible but it just didn't do much for my lashes. Repurchase? No.

This mascara on the other hand, was brilliant! It lengthened, volumeised, curled and made my lashes look jet black. By far the best 'drugstore' mascara I've ever used. Repurchase? Definitely.

Another brilliant budget skincare product from Botanics. I used this a few times a week and loved the results, it plumped up and moisturised skin and helped even out my skin tone. Repurchase? Yes.

Sephora Exfoliating Cream Cleanser

I bought this cleanser quite a while ago and used it more as a mask to allow the exfoliating enzymes time to get to work. I enjoyed using it but have since found other masks that give me better results. Repurchase? No.

It's no secret that I love Lee Stafford products, I rave about them endlessly here on the blog but unfortunately this one wasn't for me. Although it did smooth out my hair a bit it didn't give it enough moisture or nourishment. This one would be great for those who have hair that's slightly unruly but not particularly dry. Repurchase? No.

I've been using this hair shine spray for years and love it. I've lost count of the amount of times I've repurchased it. I have however recently discovered a similar product I love even more, the Argan Oil Anti Frizz Serum Spray (full review here) that one adds shine too but also moisturises hair, protects it against humidity, reduces frizz and I prefer the scent so I'll be buying it instead! Repurchase? No

A lightweight, cream textured, leave in conditioner. The product is lovely, it moisturises hair and controls frizz but the packaging is very annoying. The spray pump kept getting clogged up with product so I had to take it off and pour it into my hand. Not ideal! I'm not sure if this happens to all of them or if it was just mine but either way it meant I ended up using the product less often than I wanted too. Repurchase? No.

I loved this hand cream, it was a mini that I got as part of a GWP that quickly became a handbag staple. It did everything a hand cream should do and smelt great too! Repurchse? Yes.

I was given this mini as a gift, it came in a set with a few other EL fragrances but this was the one that immediately stood out to me. I just love it! I've since bought the full sized version so I'll be doing a full on review soon. Repurchase? Already have!

I seem to have used up a lot of budget skincare lately! This was a great sensitive skin friendly, hydrating eye cream that performed just as well as a lot of the high end eye creams I've tried. Repurchase? Yes.

A relaxingly scented spray I spritz onto my pillow before bedtime, it relaxes me and sends me off to sleep. Maybe it's just phycological but who cares if it works! Repurchase? Yes.

What have you used up recently?

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Thursday, 9 October 2014

Indeed Labs Pepta-Bright

I've mentioned IndeedLabs Pepta-Bright a few times here on the blog now in various favourites posts so I thought it was about time I did a full review. I've been using it for a couple of months now and it has very quickly become my favourite skincare product! It claims to be a good product to help fade dark spots, even skin tone and brighten skin, as I had quite a few areas of pigmentation on my skin I was keen to give it a try and I'm so glad I did! It has faded all my dark marks dramatically, they're nearly invisible leaving my skin tone looking much clearer and more even. I was quite shocked to see such drastic improvements so quickly, I really wish I had taken some 'before' photos so I could do a before-and-after. 

The texture of the product is lovely too, it is a light cream serum that's also quite moisturising. Those with oily skin could possibly even get away with not using a moisturiser on top. It sinks into the skin quickly and easily and works well with other skincare products. I've been using it both in the day and at night as makeup sits very well on top of it.

If you have any problems with pigmentation, dark spots from either acne or sun damage or just a general unevenness of skin tone I would highly recommend this! It really has worked so brilliantly for me! 

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Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Nip+Fab Bee Sting Fix Lifting Mask

I'm pretty new to lifting masks, in fact the Nip+Fab Bee Sting Fix Lifting Mask is the first one I've tried. They're designed for more mature skin, to lift and firm which is why I hadn't tried them before but seeing as this one claimed to also add a boost of hydration I thought I'd give it a go!

The mask has a clear, gel texture and spreads onto the skin easily, I left it on for about 10 minutes and then just rinsed off the excess. It can also be left on overnight for a super intensive treatment. It left my skin feeling soft, plumped up and very hydrated so I was really pleased with the results. I probably won't be using it very regularly but I'll definitely use it as and when if my skin is feeling dehydrated or as a pre-party mask to give my skin a bit of extra glow. I also think this would work really well as an in-flight mask as it's completely clear and would help protect skin from getting dehydrated and dry.

Have you ever tried a lifting mask?

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Friday, 3 October 2014

September Favourites

The products I've been loving the most this month, alongside old favourites, are all relatively new additions to my stash. For skincare I've been loving IndeedLabs Pepta-Bright, I don't think a single skincare product has ever made more of a difference to my skin. It really is the best product for fading marks and evening out skin tone. Another skincare product I've been loving is the Good Things Manuka Honey Radiance Face Mask, you can see my full review on it here. It's a great 3-in-1, it draws out impurities, exfoliates and hydrates skin and has quickly become my go to mask. I've been using it about twice a week and my skin has been feeling really fresh!

With makeup it's been all about complexion this month. I always think if you get your complexion looking good the rest doesn't really matter too much! I've been using the Revlon Photoready Skinlights Face Illuminator in Bronze Light under foundation to give my skin a bit more of a glow and the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer in Caramel (full review here) under my eyes and on any blemishes. It's heavy enough in coverage to cover anything but still manages to feel really lightweight on the skin. My new favourite concealer for sure! I've been using the Real Techniques Large Shading Brush to buff it into the skin and I find this works really well, it blends the product right in and looks so natural. 

What have you been loving this month?

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