Thursday, 31 December 2015

2016 Resolutions

Make my blog bigger and better
In the past few months I've been trying my best to improve my blog, working on photography, posting more often, thinking of more creative content and improving my social media, in particular instagram to create more of a 'brand.' This year I want to continue to do this and to make my blog bigger and better than 2015. 

I think I spoke about happiness in my goals for 2015. This year I want to think of myself more, think of my own happiness and spend time on me. A selfish one, yes. However I think making sure you're happy and enjoying yourself is such an important factor because if you're happy, it's much easier to make everyone around you happy too.

Keep exercising
I did exercise in 2015 more regularly than previously and in the past month or so I have got back into a sort of routine in terms of working out. So I would like to continue this throughout the year!

Who doesn't like to travel more? This year, I am hopefully going to New York for my 21st birthday and my best friend and I are hopefully going on a little weekend away somewhere, perhaps Edinburgh. As my last summer before I head into the 'real world' I would love to explore more places!

I am definitely not a 'social butterfly.' I much prefer my own company and staying home rather than going out. However this year I would love to challenge myself and try and go out more, meet new people and just generally be slightly more social than I currently am!

What are your resolutions for 2016?
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Monday, 28 December 2015

Top 10 of 2015

There's been quite a few new products which made their way into my everyday makeup routine and some old favourites which stuck around and became holy grail! I thought I would share my top ten all time favourite products from this year, the foundation I can always rely on is the Mac Studio Fix Fluid; this never lets me down! The coverage of this is brilliant and lasts all throughout the day, covering redness brilliantly and just making my skin look a lot better than it actually is!  The concealer I have stuck with this year is my Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer, this stuff is brilliant, as I have said many times! It covers both under eye circles and red, angry blemishes beautifully! While I tend to prefer healthy, glowy makeup I did buy a powder which became a firm favourite; the Ben Nye Luxury Powder in Cameo. This works brilliantly to set my makeup and keep it looking flawless and poreless all day. A recent addition to my makeup is The Body Shop Shade Adjuster, I haven't had this long however it is absolutely brilliant! There is a full review here but in short, if you have a foundation which is a couple of shades too dark, this makes it match your skin while still keeping the nice textures of your foundations. 

This year I stuck with the trusted Anastasia Beverley Hills brow products, I use the Brow Wiz and Dip Brow. If I had to choose one I would pick Dip Brow as I find it much quicker to use and creates the perfect brow shape. I find Brow Wiz better for a more natural looking brow if you just want to add a bit of colour and definition to your brows. The Urban Decay Naked Palettes are my favourites as I pretty much only wear neutral, nude eyeshadows. This year I bought the Naked 2 because, why not? It's definitely my favourite of the three, the shades are more cool toned which I love and I just find it a really useful palette to own! My trusted makeup tool this year has to be my Beauty Blender! I put off buying one of these for so long however earlier this year, I finally took the plunge. I use this for every foundation I own and it works so much better on my dry skin in comparison to using brushes and buffing the foundation in, definitely a tool I would recommend. For lips, two of my favourite products have been the YSL Rouge Volupte in Nude Beige and the NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Stockholm. These are both constantly in my handbag as I reach for them the most out of all my lip products! The YSL lipstick is so moisturising and great for throwing on if I'm in a rush while the NYX Lip Cream takes slightly more precision however once it's on it stays on all day!

Which products were your favourite this year?

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Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Winter Skin Saviours

I have dry skin all year round, however when the weather gets colder and we turn on the heating; it get's 100x drier. Whenever my skin gets dry or feels dehydrated I always reach for the Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask, this is incredible. I pop it on at night and immediately my skin feels so hydrated. When I wake up in the morning, it makes applying foundation so much easier as it prevents dry patches on my skin. Another mask I love is the Lush Mask of Magnaminty, I actually use this all year round as it's amazing at getting rid of blemishes and reducing redness on my skin, I tend to get more breakouts in winter so I use this much more often to calm them down. I need a moisturiser which is going to allow my foundation to look great on my skin and prevent my skin feeling like a desert throughout the day, I have wanted to try the Embryolisse Lait Cream Concentrate for ages and this month I received it in my Birchbox which I was very happy about. It sinks into the skin really quickly which I love, however it also hydrates my skin amazingly. It's a definite thumbs up for this! As I've said, making my foundation look good on my skin can be tricky, I've been reaching for the Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation lately. This is incredible if you have dry skin, I have no issues with it looking cakey or clinging to any dryness, I can apply it with my fingers/Beauty Blender/a brush and it looks lovely either way!

Which products do you love to use in the winter?
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Sunday, 13 December 2015

December Birchbox

Benefit Ultimate Party Kit
ModelCo Long Lasting Lipstick in Smitten
Ciate Paint Pot 
Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentre
Rituals Foaming Shower Gel
Catherine Malandrino Style de Paris Eau de Parfum

This month's Birchbox, or Birch-BAG is super exciting as you also get a really cute clutch bag! It's a beautiful green suede, with leather and glitter details. The perfect accessory for a Christmas party! This months package is a good one, I have wanted to try the Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentre for ages so I was really happy to receive it this month. This is amazing for dry skin and prepping the skin for foundation without making it cling to dry patches! Also in the bag is a ModelCo lipstick in a stunning deep red shade, these are my favourite kinds of red lipsticks to wear as they tend to suit me more. I also love getting Benefit goodies in my Birchbox and this month, you get TWO! You get the Puff Off and They're Real Liner!

What do you think of this months box (bag)?
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Wednesday, 9 December 2015

My go-to Lip products

Today, I thought I would share the lip colours I reach for the most. These are generally in my handbag 24/7, I don't carry makeup with me generally but lip products are always somewhere at the bottom of my bag. All three of these are quite neutral shades which makes them super easy to throw on when I'm out and about. The first is the YSL Rouge Volupte in Nude Beige (see swatch here) I adore the consistency of these lipsticks as they're so smooth and creamy, therefore so easy to apply if I'm out and without a mirror. This shade goes with any makeup look which is why it's one I constantly keep in my bag. The NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams are a new addition to my makeup collection, Stockholm is definitely my favourite out of the three I bought. It's an orangey nude shade (see swatch here) which I like to throw on if I fancy something slightly bolder than a nude or a pink shade. I really like the packaging of these and the consistency doesn't dry my lips out but still leaves a lovely matte finish on the lips. Finally is Mac Creme Cup (see swatch here) which is such a wearable pale pink, again the consistency is lovely and moisturising and it's definitely one of my go-to nude shades!

Which lip products do you carry with you?
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Wednesday, 2 December 2015

What's in my bag?

The majority of the time, I carry a massive bag around with me and stuff it full of things I *may* but never actually do need. When I do have to carry a smaller one, I jam it full of the 'essentials' which I thought I would share with you! The smaller bag I generally reach for is this one from Monsoon which I bought in the summer, it slightly resembles the famous Chloe Drew bag which I am obsessed with but obviously at a fraction of the cost! I always carry my Iphone with me, even though I'm absolutely rubbish at answering my phone or replying to texts. I also keep my car and house keys in my bag as I'm usually travelling around in my little Fiat! If I'm carrying a smaller bag like this, I swap my bulky Kate Spade purse for a tinier one, the mint green one I have here is from Accessorize and it's super handy as it has slots for cards, meaning you don't lose them and they are easy to just grab! 

I'm not one to carry much makeup in my bag, even when I take my bigger bags, I keep makeup to the minimum as I rarely need to top my makeup up. I always carry some kind of lip balm, at the moment I'm finding plain old Vaseline to be the best for my dry lips. It works so much better than any of the more expensive lip balms! I also carry a neutral shade of lipstick, this one is YSL Nude Beige and it's one that I carry around with me as it's so easy to throw on due to the buttery consistency and the fact the colour can be worn with pretty much any makeup look! Finally I carry a tube of my all time favourite concealer, the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer, just in case I need to conceal any pesky spots throughout the day!

Which items do you carry around with you?
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Saturday, 28 November 2015

The Happiness Boutique

I'm loving statement necklaces at the moment, I love throwing them on with simple outfits to make the outfit stand out more! I was contacted by The Happiness Boutique, a Berlin based company which makes beautiful jewellery including earrings as well as lots of statement necklaces! The one I chose was the Pearl and Diamond Statement Necklace as I love the neutral cream and pale pink shades, they go with so many different outfits so it's super easy to throw on with anything. This is a really pretty and elegant necklace, I sometimes wear it with the crystals facing outwards or if I want a more understated look, I turn it round so only the pearls are on show; sort of a two-in-one necklace!

The Happiness Boutique offer free shipping, great for those of us (me) who hate paying postage charges so I love that they do free shipping on orders! They also run a fantastic rewards program where you can earn points in a number of different ways including buying items, reviewing items, signing up to their newsletter and tagging them in your photos! Through their rewards system you can receive free gifts!

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Wednesday, 25 November 2015

November Birchbox

1. Living Proof Restore Instant Repair Cream £25
2. Cowshed Cow Pat Hand Cream £8
3. Lord and Berry Silhouette Neutral Lip Liner £9
4. Ren Wake Wonderful Night-Time Facial £32
5. Trilogy Makeup Be Gone Cleansing Balm £19.50
6. English Laundry Notting Hill Femme Eau de Parfum £60

This month's Birchbox is in collaboration with Skinnydip London! You can win some great Skinnydip London goodies and beauty treats if you shared a photo of you with this months box, tag your friends and use the hashtag #BirchboxUK! My favourites from this months box are the Trilogy Cleansing Balm, the Cowshed Hand Cream and the Lord and Berry Lip Liner. I constantly have hand cream in my handbag so I love getting it in the boxes, this one smells amazing, very wintery! The Trilogy Cleansing Balm has a really nice consistency, some cleansing balms are too solid but this one melts into the skin really nicely. I don't own many lip liners at all so I was really excited to get the neutral lip liner by Lord and Berry which can be used with any lip colour to create clean crisp lines!

What do you think of this month's box?
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Sunday, 22 November 2015

Current Face

Face | On my face I have been testing out the L'oreal True Match Genius Foundation*, I'm really impressed with this. While it claims to be a 4-in-1 foundation, combining a primer, foundation, concealer and powder; I do still follow it with my usual concealer and powder. It's a medium coverage/buildable foundation which has a satin finish, it was more matte than dewy however I felt like my skin had a lovely glow to it. I followed with my usual Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer to hide my under eye circles and multitude of blemishes and then finished with the Ben Nye Luxury Powder in Cameo, which has become a firm favourite of mine. 

Eyes | I started by shaping and filling in my brows with my favourite product, the Anastasia Dipbrow Pomade in the shade Blonde to frame my face. I then used the L'oreal Nude Eyeshadow Palette in Beige* to create a subtle brown smokey eye, this palette is really pigmented which is fantastic and there is a really nice balance between shimmery shades and matte shades which I love! I then applied the Stila Liquid Liner in Black and finished off the eyes with the L'oreal Feline Volume Million Lashes Mascara*

Lips | For my lips I used the L'oreal Naomi Lipstick in the Shade Delicate Rose* which is such a pretty nude/pink, while this lipstick gives a matte finish, it feels really moisturising on the lips! 

Which products have you been using lately?
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Thursday, 19 November 2015

The Body Shop Shade Adjusting Drops

Having quite fair skin means I often struggle to find foundations that match my skin perfectly. I also shop online for foundations a lot and don't always get the shade matches right. I was so excited when I heard about these Shade Adjusting Drops from The Body Shop, in fact I read one review and then went straight away to purchase them! For ten pound, I thought it was really affordable and a great product to give a try! You can choose between either Lightening or Darkening drops depending on whether you need to make a foundation lighter or darker. It's really easy to use, I apply my foundation to the back of my hand, add a couple of drops and mix together. I've used white foundation before to try and lighten foundations and it didn't work very well and seemed to change the consistency of the foundation. This however lightens the foundation while the consistency and pigmentation remains! I'm really happy with this product, I now don't have to worry about blending my foundations all the way down my neck in order to try and make darker foundations look natural and I can keep the foundations I own rather than buy them again in the right shades! The above photo shows the foundation before, the drops and then the shade when I mix the two, as you can see, it also takes away any slightly orange tones to make your foundation match your skin perfectly! I'm so impressed with this product and I think for £10, it's a steal! I haven't shopped in The Body Shop for years however this is definitely making me want to try more products!

What do you think of this product?
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Sunday, 15 November 2015

fLash Eyelash Serum

I've always wanted to try eyelash serums as my eyelashes aren't the longest in the world. I was so excited to try this one from fLASH which promises "long, sexy, curled lashes. Fast." Sounds great. It's really easy to apply, you use it as you would liquid eyeliner and apply it along the lash line, I did it at night which is probably the easier option! It took about a month or so for me to notice a difference, it was definitely a gradual change and then one day I realised how much they had actually grown! The main different I noticed was the outside lashes, they grew a lot as you can clearly see from the before and after! It took a while longer for the other lashes to catch up but now they have grown to look more even! I'm really happy with how my lashes look after using this product, it's definitely a lot easier and cheaper than regularly getting eyelash extensions and I found it really easy to use. I have quite sensitive eyes but didn't have any issues with this product irritating my eyes or drying them out, which is great! I think this product is well worth the money, it's so quick to apply the gel as it's not a long boring process, it's just popping it onto your lash line and you're done! I'm so happy with the results and will definitely carry on using this!

What do you think of the results? 
You can buy the serum here!
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Thursday, 12 November 2015

Current Favourites

There's been a few new products I've been loving recently that I wanted to share! About two weeks ago, I had a really bad skin reaction and my skin started to flake off and turn red. Everything I put on it made it sting unbearably until my mum recommended putting some Vaseline on it, which worked incredibly! I also have problems with dry lips which no lip balm seems to solve, I've started using this on them, which works better than any lip balm! I ordered a few things from Lush, I added Snow Fairy Shower Gel to my basket after hearing amazing things about it. I thought "how good can a shower gel be?" It turns out the answer is: Very. This smells like candy floss and is incredible! I've almost used up this bottle and I'll definitely be purchasing some more. I recently blogged about the NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams, I have been obsessed with the shade Stockholm in particular, I love how easy they are to apply. You can read the review here! I've been using the Ben Nye Luxury Powder in the shade Cameo to set my makeup, it makes it look flawless and sets my makeup for the whole day. Finally is the nail polish I have been constantly wearing, Essie Bahama Mama. This is the perfect autumnal shade and I get so may compliments when I have it on! 
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Monday, 9 November 2015

Urban Decay Naked Palette 2

I own the original Naked palette and the third one, however I never picked up the second one! Recently I had a rubbish few weeks so decided to treat myself to it! I pretty much only wear neutral eyeshadows so while it may seem a tad excessive to have all three, I get so much use out of all of them! A simple explanation of all three: the original is more warm toned browns, the second is cool toned shimmery shades and the third is pink toned shades. I personally think the first and second create extremely different eye looks despite looking similar at first glance, so if you're tempted to have both, I'd recommend it. As with all the Naked palettes, the pigmentation is amazing and the shades are always absolutely gorgeous, my favourites are 'Tease' 'Chopper' and 'YDK.' I tend to use 'Tease' in the crease and then the other two on the lids. The one thing I'm not a huge fan of is the packaging, I much prefer how to original palette was packaged. I may have bought a dodgy one but the tin doesn't close very easily at all! Like the other palettes, you also get a brush which I do find useful, usually brushes in palettes are absolutely useless and just get thrown in the bin however I think this one is good really good quality. Overall I'm so happy with this purchase, I knew I would love it as I adore the other two I own but I've been loving using it every day since I bought it!

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Wednesday, 4 November 2015

NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams

While I was browsing the Boots website, I spotted they now stock NYX products! I have never tried anything from NYX but have always wanted to as I had heard great things about them, plus the fact that they're so affordable! I decided to buy some of the Soft Matte Lip Creams, in the shades Milan, Stockholm and Copenhagen. Stockholm is an orangey nude colour, it very wearable and easy to throw on with any kind of makeup. Milan is a really pretty pink, in the swatch on my lips, it looks a very bright pink. However you can make it look slightly muted and less bold! Finally Copenhagen is such a pretty vampy red shade! Overall, I am really impressed with these, they apply just like a lipgloss and then take a while to set matte. I really like the consistency as I find it super easy to apply, I need to have a little bit more practice with Copenhagen as the first few tries weren't as neat as I would like! They last absolutely ages as well and don't dry my lips out like most matte lip products do! I think for £5.50 they are absolutely amazing and definitely worth the price, I am definitely going to buy more!

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Friday, 30 October 2015

Autumn Makeup

Recently, I've changed up my makeup slightly to make it more autumnal! I've been switching between the Mac Studio Fix Fluid and the Too Faced Born This Way foundation as those are both my favourites at the moment. I then use my Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer to cover blemishes and under eye circles and finish off with the Ben Nye Luxury Powder in the shade Cameo. For my brows, I use my favourite product, the Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow Pomade to fill them in and give them more shape. On my eyes I start with the Kiko Long Lasting Stick Eyeshadow in the shade 07, this is a really pretty champagne colour that works as a nice base, I then apply Kid and Ricepaper eyeshadows from Mac. I lightly apply Kid in the crease and blend out before popping Ricepaper over the lid. I've been loving the Eyeko Fat Liquid Liner for creating thicker lines and wings at the moment as it is really pigmented and lasts all day! To finish off my eyes, I apply the L'oreal Miss Manga Mega Volume Mascara which I love for adding both length and much needed volume to my lashes! Finally, on my lips is a new Mac lipstick I bought recently. The shade is Diva and I absolutely love it, I think it's perfect for autumn and creating for vampy makeup looks!

What are your favourite products for autumn?
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Saturday, 24 October 2015

Flawless Makeup Base

I've never had the best skin, years of acne has left my skin quite red and scarred so I've always relied on makeup to try and make it look as good as I possibly can. Recently I've found a few products that make me feel so confident and happy with how they look on my skin. I recently purchased the Too Faced Born This Way Foundation which I am absolutely loving. It's similar to something like Estee Lauder Double Wear and the L'oreal Infallible Pro Matte Foundations, really good coverage yet really lightweight on the skin. I apply it as I do with most of my foundations, with a slightly damp beauty blender and it blends flawlessly into my skin, I love the coverage as it is enough to cover my scarring really well and I don't need a ton of concealer to hid them. The concealer I use under my eyes and on blemishes is the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer, I've used this for ages and absolutely love it! It doesn't dry my skin out, it has brilliant coverage and I find it so easy to blend in, it almost melts into my skin. I was looking for a powder to set my under eye concealer when I found the Ben Nye Luxury Powder in Cameo, the banana powder is a very well known for being used by Kim Kardashian. The banana shade looked a bit too yellow for my skin so I went with the Cameo powder. I started using this just on my under eyes to set my concealer but loved the finish it gave, so I now use it all over my face using a sponge. It makes my skin look amazing, my large pores are invisible and it just sets my makeup in place all day!

What are your favourite products for a flawless makeup base?
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Wednesday, 21 October 2015

How I Style My Hair with The Nicky Clarke DesiRed Straightener

Because I have quite short hair, I either style it straight or I curl it as it's not long enough to do much else with it!  I love curling it as it makes my hair have more body and volume compared to just straightening it! I've been using the new Nicky Clarke DesiRed Hair Straightener to style my hair lately, Lydia Bright is the face of the new range which also includes a hair dryer! With the straightener, you can adjust the heat which is always a great feature depending on how thick your hair is and how much heat you like to put on your hair. To curl my hair I start by sectioning my hair into four sections as I have very thick hair. I then just use the straightener to clamp my hair, near the root and then twist and gently pull down, I call this the "ribbon method" as it's similar to the technique you use when you curl ribbons on presents! The straightener makes it really easy to curl my hair as the ceramic plates are really smooth so it doesn't tug or pull on my hair at all! It creates really pretty, sophisticated looking curls 
that last really well too, I then give my hair a light spray with hair spray! You can buy the straightener at Argos here! It is currently on offer too for just £39.99, less than half price!

What do you think of this hairstyle?
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Sunday, 18 October 2015

October Birchbox

Birchbox £12.95*

Stylist Box
Fruit Pigmented Lip Glaze £19
Bioderma £10.20
Parlor Smoothing Blowout Spray £17
Rituals Yogi Flow Foaming Shower Gel £8.50
When Travelmate Sheet Mask £25
No 7 English Laundry Perfume £60

Back to Basics
Eyeko Fat Liquid Eyeliner £12
Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat £9
Bioderma £10.20
Regenerate Advanced Toothpaste £10
Beaver Professional Moisturising Shampoo £11.50
Beaver Professional Moisturising Conditioner £12

This month's Birchbox was super exciting as there were TWO great boxes to choose from. Both are absolutely brilliant, I slightly prefer the Back to Basics box as I think it's probably my favourite Birchbox, ever! You get TWO full size products in the Back to Basics box, the Eyeko Fat Liquid Eyeliner and the Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat. The Eyeko Fat Liquid Eyeliner is amazing, I've been using it everyday since I got the box and I love it. It's super black and makes it really quick and easy to apply eyeliner. The Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat is a product I've wanted to try for ages so I was so happy to receive the full size version. I am so impatient when painting my nails so I love using quick dry products, it's amazing to be able to paint my nails and be able to leave the house in a few minutes! Also, this gives nails a really nice shine to them as well!  Both the boxes come with a mini Bioderma too, I only use micellar waters to remove my makeup so these are perfect for me, plus they would be great to travel with! 

Which box would you pick?
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