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Thursday, 29 January 2015

Favourite Perfumes


I have accumulated a large number of perfumes recently and thought I would do a post on my favourites! These would be perfect to buy someone for valentines day or maybe just to treat yourself! Marc Jacobs is one of my favourite brands for fragrances, Daisy Dream (£43.99) is one I received for christmas. It is such a lovely light, fresh and floral scent which is a perfect everyday perfume. It is similar to many of the other Marc Jacobs perfumes but I would say it's lighter, there are notes of coconut, pear and jasmine so it is a sweet and fresh fragrance. I bought a hand cream from L'occitane a while ago which was from the Arlesienne collection, I kept getting comments on how lovely the smell of it was so I went back to see if they had anything else in the collection. I found the Arlesienne fragrance (£39.00) which is very floral and sweet, I would say this is more of a daytime scent! It's probably the most floral of all these perfumes and has notes of rose and violet. This lasts so well throughout the day and is such a lovely scent!

Lola by Marc Jacobs (£41.99) is a perfume I first got when I was about 15 and still love! Like many of the other Marc Jacobs scents, it is a very floral fragrance, I would say it's a lot more floral than Daisy Dream, which is more fresh! In comparison to Daisy Dream, I would say this was more sophisticated and more of an evening fragrance. This has notes of peony, rose, geranium and vanilla so is very feminine. The Hugo by Hugo Boss fragrance* (£29.99) is being re-released for valentines day, so a perfect gift! This has fruity notes with an aromatic twist. There are notes of boysenberry, himalayan red grass, black tea and jasmine. I wear this as a daytime scent as it is fruity and quite a subtle fragrance in comparison to the others but is still a really lovely simple perfume! Finally is a new fragrance which launched yesterday, it's the 007 for women* (£19.99) perfume. I wasn't expecting to like this perfume as I thought it was a bit gimmicky but it is honestly one of the nicest fragrances I have ever tried! It's probably my favourite of all of these, it has notes of black pepper, blackberry, vanilla and cedar wood. This isn't an especially floral perfume, I would say it's a dark but feminine and sophisticated scent. It is perfect for both daytime wear and evening wear. I would completely recommend trying this perfume as I think it's so lovely!

What are your favourite perfumes?




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Friday, 23 January 2015

How I Cleared Up My Skin


For about 6 years my skin has been a major problem, it started when I was about 13 years old, it wasn't too bad to begin with, I would describe it as "teenage spots" it started on my forehead and then after a few years; it was everywhere. I think I was about 16 when I would actually describe it as acne, it wasn't just lots of spots, it was a huge amount of redness, scarring and it just looked terrible. This is where my love of makeup began and it's the reason I have tried SO many foundations, because it was so important to me to cover up my skin in the best way possible; without irritating it further. When I was about 14, I went to see my GP who started by putting me on a cream for my skin (this was called Duac cream, this is quite mild and is what they put most people on to begin with) which worked amazingly and my skin cleared up almost completely, the problem with it is that you can become resistant to it, which I did. I was then prescribed a lotion and about three types of antibiotics, which did nothing, finally I was prescribed the pill, I didn't notice much of a different with this either. 

I'm going to talk through the skincare I now use to help keep spots and acne at bay, but I'm also going to talk about the massive impact changing certain aspects of my diet had on my skin. My favourite cleanser is the Origins Mega Mushroom Cleanser, I don't think I'm going to try another cleanser as this works so well on my skin. My skin can get quite dry and dehydrated so I need something to hydrate and something that doesn't dry my skin out even more. This is so moisturising and leaves my skin feeling clean and soft. I have used the St Ives face scrubs for years and really love them, they are great at removing dead skin cells but don't feel harsh or aggravate the skin. I use a mixture of three different face masks on my skin, the first is the Origins Drink Up Intensive Mask. This goes on at night, so that when you wake up in the morning, your skin feels refreshed and hydrated. The other two masks are traditional 10-15 minute masks, the Clear Improvement mask works great for calming my skin and any blemishes I have and the Ren Detox Mask is perfect for minimising pores! If I get a particularly big spot, I love to use the Lush Grease Lightning, unlike other spot treatments, this is so gentle on the skin and doesn't sting or irritate it, I simply put it on at night and in the morning the spot has significantly reduced in size. 

Now I'm going to talk about the main reason my skin cleared up. Milk. I had read somewhere that cows milk often causes acne and bad skin so I switched to alternatives. (It took me a while to find one I liked, my favourite is coconut milk! FYI Lactose Free milk still contains dairy, so I would avoid that too!) At first I wasn't sure if it was cutting out cows milk that cleared up my skin, but whenever I have a few off days like christmas for example, when I treat myself a little more than normal, eating milk chocolate and cows milk, my skin goes absolutely crazy. If you don't believe me (which I'm sure most of my family don't) just google "acne and cows milk" and a whole array of articles appears about the impact cows milk can have on your skin. The website Acne Milk says that "the reason milk products cause acne is because milk contains hormones that "turn on" oil glands." I read so many articles from people who had tried it themselves and found that their skin improved dramatically. If I'm being honest, I'm not completely dairy-free at all. I do still treat myself with chocolate now and then, but even by just cutting cows milk out there was a vast improvement. So, if you're like me and your acne will not go away despite numerous tablets and remedies, then try giving up dairy!

I hope I didn't scared you too much with my spot covered skin in the before shot! 


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Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Uspicy Ten Piece Makeup Brush Set


I'm a bit of a makeup brush addict so I was excited to try this set of ten makeup brushes! They arrived in a lovely box so I think they would be the perfect gift for any makeup addict, the design is very simple but I think it looks very classic which I love. You get five face brushes and five eye brushes in the set which for £35.00 (£3.50 PER BRUSH!) but it is currently on offer for £16.99! The brushes are ridiculously soft, on par with my real techniques brushes which are the softest. You also get a little booklet in the pack which explains each brush and what they can be used for, you get the Flat Brush, Tapered Brush, Flat Angled Brush, Angled Brush, Round Brush, Precision Flat Brush, Precision Tapered Brush, Precision Flat Angled Brush. Precision Angled Brush and Precision Round Brush. my personal favourite is the round top brush which I use for foundation, I love round top brushes for applying foundation as they really buff the foundation into the skin and give a lovely finish to the skin. The booklet also gives you some information on how to store and wash your brushes. The issue I have with a lot of brushes is that they shed when I'm using them and I have to pick tiny hairs off of my face, luckily with these, this doesn't happen. I haven't noticed any shedding at all!

I am so impressed with these brushes, I think the quality is brilliant for the price that they are! You can purchase them on Amazon here!


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Friday, 16 January 2015

Food: Homemade Chicken Ramen


Ingredients per person
150g Noodles
Handful of Kale
1 Chicken Breast
250ml Chicken Stock (you can use vegetable stock too)

You could also add
Spring Onions
Bamboo
Ginger
Chilli

This is one of the simplest meals, ever! And it's so delicious. I made quite a simple version but you can add whatever you want to it! I started by taking one chicken breast, seasoned it with salt and pepper before grilling it in a pan with a tiny bit of oil. I then cooked the noodles in a pan of boiling water for about 7 minutes (or however long the ones you use take to cook!) I couldn't find ramen noodles but these ones are close enough, the ones I used are the Amoy Straight to Wok Medium Noodles. I then took a handful of kale (spinach would also work) and put it in a saucepan of boiling water on the hob. Once the chicken has cooked, take it out of the pan and cut it diagonally before putting it back into the pan just to cook it a tiny bit more. Then make the stock, I used an Oxo cube and dissolved it in 250ml of boiling water, I then grabbed a large, deep bowl and placed the chicken, kale and noodles in it. Finally I ladled in the stock and voila! This is so delicious and you could even take it with you to work/college/school/university to have on the go! You could also replace the chicken with beef or if you would like a veggie version, skip the chicken and add some yummy alternatives!




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Friday, 9 January 2015

Half up, Half Down twist with the Nicky Clark Diamond Shine Wand


This is one of my most worn hairstyles, because it's super easy and looks very simple and elegant. It can be done with pretty much any length of hair, I did it when my hair was super long and even now when it's shorter. I start by pulling two pieces of hair back and tying with a small clear elastic, it's better to use a substantial amount of hair, just so it stays in place a bit better. You can use whichever type elastic you like but the clear ones work best so that they're completely invisible. I then make a hole with my fingers, just above the clear elastic and tuck the hair through this hole. I then curl my hair using the Nicky Clarke Diamond Shine Pro Salon Styling Wand*, this is so quick and easy to use. There are 5 different heat settings and the top temperature is 210C so you can choose exactly how hot you want the wand, depending on your hair thickness. It is a 25mm barrel so it's perfect to achieve these soft, natural looking curls. The barrel is infused with real diamonds which helps to reduce frizz and make sure your curls are smooth. To achieve the curls I just wrap my hair around the barrel and hold for about five seconds. To get a very natural wave to my hair, I leave a small section at the end of my hair, uncurled. I also make sure to curl the little ponytail, so that it blends in with the rest of my hair.

You can buy the Nicky Clark Diamond Shine Styling wand here for only £34.99! Let me know what you think about this hairstyle and whether you would like more of these kinds of posts!



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Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Current Makeup


I love sharing the products that are in my everyday makeup bag; the ones that I currently reach for. Some are staples and others are recently rediscovered items that are soon going to become staples in my routine. I feel like recently, all I have talked about is Mac Studio Fix Fluid foundation. I actually wasn't expecting to like this foundation as I had heard it breaks people out (it hasn't, yay!) and was for more oiler skin, but I completely fell in love with it and it is probably my favourite foundation ever..which is saying something as I have tried about 500 different foundations. For under my eyes, I use my trusty Bobbi Brown Creamy Concealer, the formula of this is lovely as I have such dry skin under my eyes and this is so creamy and doesn't dry it out at all. For blemishes I either use my Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer or the Nars Radiant Creamy concealer, I'm currently using the Collection one but I have a new Nars concealer ready to go, for when I finish this one. I then set my makeup with Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Finish Powder to make sure my makeup stays in place throughout the day. For my brows, I am back to using Brow Wiz by Anastasia Beverly Hills. I absolutely love Anastasia's brow products, the shade range is good and you can easily change the shape of your brows, I then set my brows with the Benefit Gimme Brow to make sure my brows stay in place and I don't have any stray brow hairs.

On my eyes, I've been using Mac Naked Lunch and Woodwinked, then adding a thin line of gel liner, I love the Bobbi Brown Gel Liner as it doesn't smudge and stays put all day. I then finish my eyes with this mascara from YSL which I am in love with, my mum even asked if I was wearing false lashes! Score! For christmas I received Soar lipliner and Faux lipstick by Mac, which I really love, I don't usually wear this shade of lipstick but I've been loving how they look!


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Friday, 2 January 2015

2014 Favourites


I found SO many new products in 2014 so thought I would share my favourites! The Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask is one of my favourite skincare products, if you ever get dry or dehydrated skin then this is perfect for you! You just apply it at night and in the morning, you wake up with hydrated and very soft skin. Another skincare essential is the L'Occitane Arl├ęsienne Hand Cream, over the past two months or so, I have had extremely dry, chapped and painful hands and just picked this one up when I was in town. It is absolutely amazing, it is so moisturising and cleared up my dry hands so quickly. For brows I have loved the Anastasia Dip Brow Pomade and the Benefit Gimme Brow gel. In my opinion, Anastasia Beverly Hills is the best brand for brows, the Dip Brow is amazing! It looks so natural and the colour is perfect for my pale brow hairs! Afterwards, I use the Benefit product to hold my brows in place (they have a life of their own) and make sure they are all in the right direction! After having it on my wish list for so long, I finally purchased the Soleil Tan De Chanel and fell in love with it. I love using it underneath my makeup but also over the top of foundation to add some colour to my face. It is pricey but it lasts absolutely ages so I think it's worth the money. In 2014 I found my perfect foundation, Mac Studio Fix Fluid. It has medium to full coverage, it covers everything and lasts all day on the skin, brilliant! Finally is my tangle teaser, I never really thought I needed one but bought one anyway and am so glad I did. It is so gentle and never tugs or pulls on my hair, it's brilliant! 

What were your favourite products of 2014?


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