Thursday, 12 October 2017

Fenty Beauty Killawatt Highlighter | REVIEW


I know I'm a good few weeks late on the Fenty Beauty posts, but I really wanted to give my purchase a proper try before I shared my thoughts! I bought the Killawatt Highlighter Duo in the shades Mean Money & Hu$tla Baby - and have also since bought the Gloss Bomb lipgloss. I think the pricing of the range is really reasonable (comparable to MAC I'd say) and this duo is £26 from Harvey Nics (although the shipping is extortionate so I'd recommend splitting shipping with a friend who also wants to try the range!).

Firstly, the packaging is so incredible. It is white with very subtle purple reflects in it (try and see it in person, it's so beautiful!), and the geometric shape is cool and really different to the traditional square and circular packaging. There's also a large mirror included. 

The actual formula is absolutely beautiful - Mean Money is a much more subtle highlight and is something I use for daytime/work on my brow bone and tear duct as it looks more natural than a strong highlight. Hu$tla Baby is much more of my kind of highlighter - super strong and glowy, with a golden undertone. It's a lovely buttery formula, and no glitter in sight! I know everyone's gone crazy for the Trophy Wife highlight, but I feel like this duo is much more wearable for every day. I used Hu$tla Baby for this look and I've been using it literally everyday at the moment!

What do you think of the Fenty Beauty range? Have you picked anything up? Let me know in the comments! 



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Thursday, 21 September 2017

September Glossybox | First Impressions of Glossybox!




So sorry for the slight overload of beauty box content this month - there were a couple of new boxes that I wanted to share before the month was over! Will have more reviews/new content soon. 

I feel like Glossybox was one (if not, the) first beauty subscription box out there. I remember when it was only available in the US and, like everything you want but can't have, I was desperate to try it. It's been in the UK for some time now, and I've not actually got round to trying it until now! The lovely Glossybox UK team got in touch to see if I wanted to try the September box, so I thought I'd share my first impressions of both the concept, and this month's box in particular.

The September Box
This month, there are 6 products included, with a good variety of beauty products (i.e. not just makeup, or skincare for example!). The Taylor's 32 Whitening Toothpaste is an all natural toothpaste, containing silica and sodium bicarbonate to help with whitening. This is already on the go as I received this just as I came to the end of my other toothpaste! Really enjoying it so far, but can't say I've noticed a huge whitening effect so far (5 days in!). The second product I was excited to try was the Pixi Brow Tamer, which is essentially a clear brow gel. After being fairly recently introduced to Pixi, this is another product to add to my collection! You might think it's easy to find a clear brow gel, but in my experience, some can be clumpy/gloopy, run out too quickly or just don't do the job of keeping brow hairs in place, but so far this one seems to be doing the trick! I'm pretty sure it's actually the full size too, which is worth £12 so seems like a good bargain to be included in the box! Also in the makeup category is the Siligel Blender which is one of those silicone makeup blenders that were all over Instagram not long ago. I have tried one of these in the past and wasn't hugely impressed, but I'll see if this one can change my mind! 
Monu is a brand I'm hearing more and more about, and I remember trying their glowy primer from the Feel Unique Advent calendar last year and really liking it. Their Firming Fiji Facial Oil is included in the box (travel size) which contains a blend of essential oils to make the skin firmer and more radiant. This is actually aimed at dry skin, so would probably be too rich for me at the moment, so I might pass this on or try it when the winter air is making my skin drier! 
Talking of winter air, a hand cream is an essential for me over winter as I find my hands can get very dry, and so I'll be saving my SkinFix Hand Repair Cream for then as it's a medicinal hand cream so will help to soothe dry hands. 
And finally, you get a Kinder Bueno as a fab chocolate treat in the box this month! 

Glossybox Impressions
This box definitely lived up to my expectations of Glossybox - it was packaged absolutely beautifully in the iconic pink box, and there was a little card which explained a little bit about each product included. In my experience, it's one of the cheapest beauty boxes out there, so great if you're a beauty addict on a budget or just want to treat yourself to something new each month as you can get plans for as little as £8.50 a month - that's only 2 or 3 Starbucks! For me, the winners of this box are the Pixi Brow Tamer and the Taylor's 32 Toothpaste as not only are they full size products, but I feel like pretty much everyone would use them (and the Kinder Bueno, of course!). I was slightly disappointed at the Monu product as I don't feel like it suits my skin, so maybe a separate options for dry/normal/oily skin could be created, although I guess that would be a bit complicated! If you take a look at the brands they've used for Glossybox's though, you could pretty much guarantee you'll have heard of 90% of them, which is also a bonus for beauty boxes as I've seen so many where most of the box is unheard-of brands. 

What do you think of beauty boxes? Have you tried Glossybox - or any others? 
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Thursday, 14 September 2017

Look Fantastic x This Works Beauty Box


Look Fantastic are absolutely killing it with their brand collab beauty boxes at the moment - they did an amazing one with Benefit and a Bare Minerals one, and now it's the turn of This Works. I always think of this works as a super chic, 'gets the job done' kind of brand, and this box definitely gives a nice flavour of their best selling products. So, let's take a peek inside...


First up is the In Transit Skin Defence, which is the full size I believe. This is an SPF30 moisturiser, with amazing ingredients like Vitamin E (keeps the skin youthful, and has great antioxidant properties) and Hyaluronic Acid to retain moisture in the skin. It has both UVA and UVB protection and is to be applied in the morning under makeup. Next is the famous Deep Sleep Pillow Spray (full size 75ml). This is the product I'm most excited about, as I had a Body Shop spray that was similar ages ago and it was lovely. The scent really helps with calming (something a massive over thinker/worrier like me needs!) and it promises to leave me feeling refreshed in the morning. Both these products alone would be £37, making the box worth it just for these two products!

Another cult product from This Works; their Perfect Legs Skin Miracle is included in a travel size (50ml) bottle. I'm so excited to see if this lives up to the hype, as it promises to give skin an 'A-list glow', whilst ingredients like Arnica and Caramel help to repair and protect lacklustre skin - sounds good to me! Next up is their Light Time Cleanse & Glow  (20ml) which is a cleansing mask - massage onto skin, leave for 1-10 minutes, then wash off to be left with glowing, hydrated skin. This sounds like such an unusual product and I can't wait to give it a go! Vitamin C is the key ingredient here - this helps with collagen production, has antioxidant properties and helps to brighten the skin. I imagine this would be a great one to use the morning after a late night! 

The final product is the No Wrinkles Midnight Moisture (15ml), which is a rich cream that speeds up the skin's repair mechanisms whilst you sleep so you wake up with plumped up, glowing skin. The key ingredients here are retinol - a great anti-ageing ingredient as it boosts collagen production and cell renewal - along with my favourite Hyaluronic Acid - I speak about this all the time but it's a fantastic hydrating ingredient which helps the skin with retaining moisture. 

And that's the whole box! You also get a little booklet all about the products, This Works as a brand and the rest of their range. You can join the waitlist now so you're ready for when it launches! 

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Thursday, 7 September 2017

Look Fantastic September Birthday Box!



This month's box from Look Fantastic is extra special, as it is their Birthday Edit! It contains some really wonderful products this month, so I thought I'd do a run down of what's included in case you'd like to pick up the box yourself. I actually did some filming with Look Fantastic for this month's box too (specifically the Decleor and Christophe Robins products) so look out for those!
First up is the makeup (my fave bit!) - you get an eyeshadow quad from Hikari, which contains some easy to wear warm shades (2 mattes and 2 shimmers). Also included is a mini Illamsaqua Contouring Gel Sculpt, which is a sheer gel contour stick. It looks really interesting, and unlike any contouring stick I've seen before, so I'll see how this compares to my fave Benefit Hoola contouring stick! As a special birthday treat, you also get a Look Fantastic eyeshadow brush, which is super Instagrammable with the silver handle and blue/green bristles. 
For skincare, you get a mini pot of the Eve Lom cleanser (+ muslin cloth). I've heard a lot about this, and I'm a big fan of balm cleansers so I'm excited to try this one out! It contains some lovely nourishing oils, along with Cocoa Butter and Egyptian Camomile to soften and smooth the skin (sounds perfect for evening cleansing!). It can be used as a cleanser to take makeup off, or for a second cleanse after micellar water. Secondly, there is also a mini Decleor Hydra Floral Hydrating Light Cream included. I love gel-based moisturisers like this one in the morning as they don't interfere with makeup and feel nice and light on the skin. 
Finally, to make your hair super voluminous and fresh, use the Christophe Robin Cleansing Volumising Paste (travel size). This is a hair mask that not only exfoliates & invigorates the scalp, but also adds plenty of volume into the hair, hopefully making it super easy to get that salon blow dry effect! The clay ingredient helps to deep clean the hair, whilst adding denseness to the hair follicles for lift and thickness. It transforms to a foam when mixed with water and I actually filmed with this product so I can confirm it smells lovely and fresh too - definitely a good one for a weekend pamper sesh.

Of course, as included with all LF beauty boxes, you get a copy of Elle magazine, along with the Beauty Box magazine. As this is a birthday special, you also get a Look Fantastic lollipop this month too! 

What do you think of this month's box- will you be picking it up?


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Thursday, 31 August 2017

My Top Tips for Glowy Skin

glowing skin, tips, makeup, glowy

The most frequent comments on my makeup pictures/videos on Instagram tend to be about my skin. Glowy skin is '100% my type on paper' and I'm rarely seen without my signature highlight. I definitely look after my skin very well and I wanted to share some of my top skincare and makeup tips to get that coveted glowy skin. I've covered it briefly in my two recent Instagram videos, however I wanted to go into a little more detail here. If you want an intense glow like in these images follow all the tips, but if you want a subtle glow instead, you can select softer highlighters or just follow the skincare tips! 

EXFOLIATING TONERS/LOTIONS

Ever since I started using exfoliating toners, my skin texture has improved massively, especially around my nose. I'm thinking about doing a post all about exfoliating toners very soon now that I've tried a few different ones so I won't say too much today! However, currently in the mornings I am using the Erno Laszlo White Marble Essence Lotion. This isn't really an acid toner, but I do use it before serum/moisturiser so I thought I'd include it here. Essentially, it evens out skin tone, rehydrates and adds luminosity to the skin with amazing ingredients like Glycerin (basically a moisture magnet!) and Daisy Extract. For nighttime, I'm currently using the First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads but I change this up all the time so I'll share my other faves in a future post!

SERUMS/MOISTURISERS

It's really important to select serums and moisturisers that are best for your skin type. My skin is generally normal to oily, so I stay away from anything too rich. I've been loving the Vichy Mineral 89 serum in the AM and PM (full review here), and I follow it up with another serum in the evening for extra hydration. In the morning, however, I just stick with the Mineral 89 and add my all time favourite AM moisturiser - the Origins GinZing. I have been on this product ever since it launched and honestly, I've lost count of the number of pots I've gone through! I find it's the absolute perfect base for makeup too as the gel formula sinks in really quickly and feels nice and light on the skin. 

PRIMERS

Getting a glowy makeup application means starting with the right primer. My dream combination which gives me glowy skin AND incredible staying power is the Illamasqua Hydraveil and the Becca Backlight Priming Filter. I've done more in-depth reviews of both of these which I've linked on the product names. If these are a little too pricey for you, I've done a Top 3 Glowy Primers post which features cheaper alternatives - however they don't quite give you the lasting power that this combo gives. 

FOUNDATION

Picking a dewy foundation is obviously essential for glowy skin. However, it definitely doesn't have to be light coverage if you don't want! My holy grail is the NARS Sheer Glow which is a medium coverage, satin finish foundation, and then I can amp up the glow with highlighters later on. Plus, if I have used my illuminating primers, the glow still shows through the foundation, so this is a great option if you have oilier skin and don't want the feel of a really dewy foundation. I even use my Maybelline Fit Me Matte & Poreless foundation sometimes and just adds plenty of highlighter creams/powders to get the glowy look - this way you choose where you want to be glowing too so again, great for oilier skin.

MAKEUP

My other makeup tips for glowy skin would be to use powder sparingly (if you can!). I tend to focus on the undereyes and my T-zone, leaving the rest powder-free. I'd also recommend using creams/liquids - I am obsessed with the Elizabeth Arden Gelato Gel Blush in Coral Daze at the moment as it's a liquid blush that gives a beautiful tint along with a soft glow. For liquid highlight, the Cover FX drops are ideal for an intense glow (it's what I used in the above photos), but for a softer look, try MAC Cream Colour Base in Hush or Benefit High Beam. I always top my liquid highlight with a powder, so select your fave highlighter - for me it's Becca Champagne Pop without a doubt. Honourable mentions also go to The Balm's Mary Lou-manizer and Laura Gellar Gilded Honey. With application, I personally go all-out and do the tops of my cheekbones, nose, cupids bow, brow bone, inner corner of my eye and sometimes just above the brow very lightly for an extra sheen. It's really up to you though - I know some people hate the nose highlight so just leave that out if you don't like it. Finally, if you want to go full-on glow, top the look off with a beautiful glossy lip. I used NYX Fortune Cookie here which is so so good (and cheap!) but I also love the Anastasia Beverly Hills, NARS and Colourpop glosses. 

DON'T FORGET YOUR BODY!

Remember, if you're going out with beautiful glowy, glossy skin, don't forget your body! If you're wearing something that shows off your shoulders or collarbone, sweep some powder highlight over them just to add that extra shine. 

Let me know if you have any tips for glowy skin in the comments. Hopefully this post has been helpful to some of you! 

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Thursday, 24 August 2017

72 Hours in Reykjavik, Iceland


If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen I recently visited Reykjavik in Iceland for a quick trip. We had 3 full days on the island so I thought I'd write up a post of everything that we did! We pretty much did the main sights and really made the most of the time we had. 

Day 1 - Exploring Reykjavik



On our first day, we landed early in the morning and got a transfer with Reykjavik Excursions into the city. Once there, we got one of the 'Hop on, Hop off' buses so we got to see everything, although the city is quite small so you could easily just walk to see the main sights. I would recommend seeing the Harpa Concert Hall (second photo) which is so beautiful. I also enjoyed walking along the coastline as the view is just stunning and you can see the Sun Voyager sculpture. The City Hall area was really pretty too and has a gorgeous lake. The Hallgrimskirkja is a beautiful church in the centre of the city, and you can get a lift to the top for a 360 degree view of the city (first photo) and it's fairly inexpensive so I'd highly recommend doing that. The main street Laugavegur is just off the Hallgrimskirkja and has plenty of shops and restaurants - one of which I'd recommend is Svarta Kaffik which is an amazing soup restaurant which serves homemade soup in a bowl made of crusty bread - heaven! The menu changes every day with a vegetarian and meat option - I had a cauliflower soup which was so delicious and creamy, and definitely filled me up!

Day 2 - Blue Lagoon

An absolute must-do in Iceland is the Blue Lagoon. It's around a 50 minute coach journey from the city centre (again, we arranged all our travel with Reykjavik Excursions). One of my biggest tips for the Blue Lagoon is to go early (pre-9am) because it was so quiet and we could get plenty of pictures and have a good swim around. After 9am, it got significantly more busy so just something to bare in mind. I'd also recommend getting the Comfort package as you get a free drink, towel and algae mask included. The free drink from the swim up bar was definitely needed as the lagoon is so hot you need to stay hydrated. I'd also recommend to bring your own waterproof phone case if you plan on taking pictures as the ones at the lagoon are around £30! It's so beautiful in the lagoon and we spent a very relaxing 3 hours there. 

Day 3 - Golden Circle Tour


On our final day, we went on the Golden Circle Tour. We chose the 'Express' tour which was 6 hours rather than 8 and went to three key stops rather than four. To be honest, this was more than enough for me as I'm not great with coach journeys and travel sickness so I'd opt for the shorter trip if you're the same. The first stop was the Geysir geothermic area which was so cool to see in real life and every time the water shot up from the active Strokkur Geysir it gave me a shock! There's also loads of hot springs and beautiful views at the site too so I had my camera out pretty much the entire time we were there. Secondly was the Gullfoss Waterfall which was so incredibly breathtaking but unfortunately I didn't get any great pictures of it as it was raining so heavily when we stopped off there. Definitely bring your waterproofs and warm clothes if you're visiting Iceland - even in August! The final stop was Þingvellir National Park which is the photo above. The stop is essentially a viewpoint for plenty of photos, and you also get to see where the two Eurasian and North-American tectonic plates have separated. You can even walk through it but we didn't have quite enough time on this tour to do so. It was a long day but something I think everyone has to see when visiting Iceland as you really don't see anything like these sights anywhere else in the world!

Have you ever visited Iceland/would you like to? Let me know in the comments. 



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Thursday, 17 August 2017

Vichy Mineral 89 | NEW SKINCARE


Vichy has had a growing presence in my skincare collection over the past few months. I've become completely obsessed with the Idealia Peeling toner and Aqualia Thermal serum and so I was very excited to try their new release; Mineral 89. It is essentially a 'Step Zero' in your skincare routine, to be used after cleansing before you apply any other skincare products. It's most comparable to a serum but I've been using a serum on top of this for extra hydration. It is honestly so incredibly lightweight and feels so much like water on the skin so is great for before makeup as it won't make your skin too creamy or greasy. I use one pump for all over my skin and I find that's more than enough - meaning this will last a long time which is great! I'd say maybe if you have drier skin, two pumps would be better but oily/normal skin can definitely get away with one. It is also ideal for sensitive skin as it is fragrance and oil free. I'm so obsessed with the packaging too - so sleek and I'm a big fan of glass packaging even if it's not so great for travelling. 

Key Ingredients: 
The amazing thing about this product is that it only contains 11 ingredients - so amazing considering ingredients lists are usually 100s of items long these days! It is 89% Mineralising Thermal Water from French volcanoes. This helps to decrease inflammation and has antioxidant properties, along with being super hydrating of course. It also contains Hyaluronic Acid which is in most incredibly hydrating skincare products as it is a unique in that it can retain lots of moisture in the skin and also helps to smooth. 

Would you try this product? Let me know your thoughts in the comments! 

Vichy Mineral 89 is available on Look Fantastic for £25 (currently on offer for cheaper!)
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Monday, 19 June 2017

Best Glowy Primers - Budget to High End


I absolutely can't do my makeup without beginning with a glowing base. I feel like it preps the skin nicely for makeup, whilst the glow shows through the foundation giving that lovely 'lit from within' look. So today, I thought I'd give a rundown of my favourites, ranging from £11 to £32. They all pretty much give the same effect, so I thought I'd provide options across all price points!

(Top to bottom: Becca Backlight Priming Filter, MAC Strobe Cream in 'Peachlite', S&G Hocus Focus)

First up is the Soap & Glory Hocus Focus. This is advertised as a 'flaw-softening illuminator' but I always use it before foundation. This has the most neutral toned colour out of the three here (by this I mean, no golden/coloured undertones) so perfect for all skin tones including super pale skin. You get 30ml for £11 and my bottle has lasted me absolutely ages. 

Next is the MAC Strobe Cream - arguably the first of this kind of product around. The one swatched above is Peachlite (there are a variety of coloured undertones on offer) so it gives off a very subtle peachy glow - I love this as it looks amazing with a tan and isn't as hard as Goldlite when I'm a bit paler. I find this is the most moisturising of the three (probably because it's primarily a skincare product more than a makeup product) so this would be my pick for drier skin. It contains plenty of vitamins along with green tea which helps to sooth skinI'd have to say this is my most used glowy primer, and I think it's the best value for money with 50ml for £25. 

Finally is the Becca Backlight Priming Filter. I got this in May for my birthday after using a sample and loving it. For me, this packs the biggest punch in the glow department - which, obviously, I love being obsessed with glowy skin. This is the best for actually priming for makeup in terms of helping with longevity etc, but it is pretty pricey at £32 for 30ml. It's very lightweight, and honestly does provide a real life 'filter' to the skin, even before applying makeup. This is my go-to for special occasions or nights out. 

Overall, I'd say each of these are all pretty much interchangeable, so if you don't have the budget for MAC or Becca, the S&G option is a great dupe. I would say though, MAC is my fave for day-to-day, and Becca is incredible at ensuring your makeup stays on all day (or night!), but you could always use your favourite face primer, then the MAC or S&G on top to get the same effect. 

Which is your favourite go-to for glowing skin? 

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Thursday, 15 June 2017

Grow Gorgeous Haircare | BRAND REVIEW



Haircare is something I'm very particular about. Having thick, curly/frizzy hair comes with both its benefits and its downfalls, and one major thing I struggle with is finding the right products to combat frizz without weighing the hair down or leaving too much product in the hair. So, for the past few weeks I've been trying out Grow Gorgeous haircare - specifically the End Split Ends serum (£19), Strengthening Oil (£25) and Scalp Detox (£28). As I've now had the chance to put each product through their paces, I thought it was about time I shared my review!

The End Split Ends serum is aimed at nourishing and repairing the ends of your hair without weighing it down, whilst encouraging healthy, strong hair growth by sealing broken fibres. I don't struggle massively with split ends, but I thought this would be a good one to try to prevent them in the first place, and so far so good. It's a very thick serum, and you only need one or two drops per use. I use it on towel dried hair and only apply to the ends - I feel it would be too heavy as a regular serum. The key ingredients are Inca Inchi oil, which helps to lock in moisture, Acai Oil, which helps with environmental damage to hair that can make it brittle and dry, and Plukenetia Volubilis Seed Oil, which helps to make hair more resistant to damage and breakage in the future. 

The Strengthening Oil has made its way into my regular haircare routine quite nicely. This is aimed at strengthening, protecting and adding shine to weak hair. Again, I wouldn't really say my hair is weak, but I definitely want to make sure it stays strong and shiny! The Chia Seed Oil creates a protective film around the hair to avoid protein loss, whilst the Beet Extract packs a punch to add more nutrients to fragile, stressed hair. I've been loving this as a last step in my routine, by running 4 drops over the lengths of my hair after blow drying and it makes it super shiny and healthy looking. 

Finally, the Scalp Detox. For me, this is the winning product for the brand, especially as I've never seen anything like this from a haircare brand before. With having curly/frizzy hair, along with regular blow drying, I can be prone to having a dry scalp, which can be so irritating and itchy. Honestly, this treatment has been an absolute lifesaver and I can honestly say I haven't suffered from a dry scalp since using this. It's essentially an exfoliater for your scalp, and I use it once a week by massaging the product thoroughly all over my scalp, leaving for 5-10 minutes, then washing it out thoroughly with shampoo and continuing with my regular haircare routine. The Castor Oil beads and White Willow Bark Extract exfoliate and act as a natural anti-bacterial. Meanwhile, the Pomegranate Fruit Enzymes exfoliate and remove product buildup. It is so cooling on your scalp, and I've not had any issues washing it out as long as your thorough with shampooing 2 times and ensuring all the beads are washed out. 

All in all, I'm absolutely loving this range at the moment - I feel like it's so underrated. Another thing I should mention is how incredible each of the products' smell!! I can't pinpoint exactly what it is, but I feel like it smells like a hair salon and so I get that super fresh, salon feeling every time I wash my hair now. If you just got one product for the range, I would have to recommend the Scalp Detox - I think it would be helpful for everyone, especially if you use a lot of hair products or you have a similar hair type to me!

Have you tried anything from this range? Let me know in the comments. 
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Monday, 12 June 2017

Look Fantastic June Beauty Box | WHAT'S INCLUDED



Hi everyone! So, I'm finally back from my blogging break - uni is finally over yaaaaaay - and ready to bring you more exciting beauty posts. First up is a peek inside Look Fantastic's June 'Wanderlust' Beauty Box. I have to say, this is my favourite one yet! This box is centred around providing in-flight and holiday essentials - which will certainly come in handy for my holiday which is just around the corner. 

Firstly is the Kerastase Resistance Strengthening shampoo. Kerastase is one of my top fave haircare brands so I can't wait to give this one a whirl - I imagine it will be great for sun damaged hair which can often feel a bit dry and brittle. This product promises smooth, stronger hair from consistent use and contains a combination of 'intra-Cylane, Ceramide R and Pro-Keratin' which all help to condition the hair. 

Next up is skincare. I really believe in treating your skin when flying, especially on long haul flights, as planes can be extremely dehydrating. The trio of products included in this months box are handy travel size containers that can be thrown into your hand luggage to use in-flight. The First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads are constantly raved about, so I can't wait to try them. They pads are an acid toner that's gentle enough for everyday use, and contains both Lactic and Glycolic Acid to gently exfoliate and brighten the skin and help to improve texture. Meanwhile, their Fab Antioxidant Booster helps to stave off environmental aggressors - like the sun, heat and humidity - so your skin stays looking its best! Follow up with the Balance Me Balancing Face Moisturiser which is suitable for all skin types as it prevents spots, controls oily skin and lightly hydrates - great for hot weather when you don't want a heavy moisturiser. It also contains Vitamin E which helps to protect the skin from environmental pollution and is a powerful antioxidant which can help with sun protection and damage (when used in conjunction with sunscreen of course). Finally, complete your holiday skincare routine with the Monu Rosewood Reviving Mist. I love a good refreshing mist, especially on holiday, so this handy travel size one will be great! It contains a variety of essential oils, including Rosewood Oil, which helps to calm and destress (great for nervous flyers!) and Lemon Oil which purifies the skin and is a natural toner that balances natural oils in the skin. The mist has tons of different uses such as an aftershave for men, a post-pedicure refresh for the feet, or just to spritz on the skin for a pick-me-up! 

Finally, two makeup products to get that glowing, effortless holiday makeup look. Firstly is the Bellapierre Cosmetics Shimmer Powder in Excite. This loose powder can be used on the face or body to get that gorgeous glow. The mineral formulation ensures it doesn't irritate the skin too! Secondly, the Hailey Baldwin for Model Co gloss included not only smells incredible, but also promises a hydrating and high shine gloss that can be used alone or over lipstick. I believe there's a couple of shade options, but I got Biz which is a gorgeous pinky nude. 

So that's my rundown of this month's box! I honestly can't wait to dig into all the products and test them out properly, but some of them will certainly be packed in my luggage for my holiday. What do you think of the products? Let me know if you'll be getting the box this month in the comments. 
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Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Look Fantastic April Beauty Box | WHAT'S INCLUDED


This is my very first Beauty Box as a Look Fantastic Ambassador, so I was super excited to see what was included - and I definitely wasn't disappointed! The box was beautifully packaged, in a beautiful peach and white box, with 7 new products to try. If you're a beauty junkie like me, this will definitely fill that beauty sized hole in your heart if you're on a budget, as all this costs less than £15! 
This month, the focus is on Natural Beauty. Now, take one look at my Instagram and you'll know that's not usually me, however, day to day, I like to give my skin a break! Plus, there's plenty of skincare/haircare to get stuck into when I fancy a pamper. Let's take a look at what's included this month...
Makeup
I'm intrigued to try the Laura Gellar Balance & Brighten powder foundation. In all honesty, I'll probably use this as a setting powder over my usual liquid foundation, but the formula looks really nice and finely milled, and the baked finish provides lots of different tones to the powder, which I imagine will stop the face from looking flat and 2-dimensional. 
Skincare
I've never tried Omorovicza before, but the Cleansing Foam looks lovely. The sulphate-free formula promises cleansing without drying out the skin and is good for all skin types. It contains Copper Gluconate which detoxifies and helps to tighten pores, White Lupin, which helps to energise & revitalise (great for AM cleansing!), and Apple Pectin, which provides hydration and improves suppleness. Sounds very luxurious! Can't wait to try this out - I imagine this will be great in the summer/on holiday when SPF can clog up the skin. Next up is the Vitamasques Pomegranate sheet mask. I have to admit, I literally used this within 24 hours of receiving the box and it was lovely! It was easy to apply and didn't feel uncomfortable, and my skin felt super hydrated after use. As I mentioned in my previous post, I'm loving sheet masks at the moment, and for £3.99, this is a lovely treat for a pamper evening. 
Thirdly is the Madara SMART Day Cream. This is aimed towards dry/very skin skin types, promising to minimise fine lines and decrease dryness in the skin so I'm not exactly the target customer but I love minis like this for when I go away and don't want to take my usual huge moisturiser! 
Body/Hair/Misc.
I'm interested to see if the This Works Perfect Legs lives up to the hype. I love stuff like this as we're moving into summer, and as this is just a mini I may try it out on my shoulders/chest for my Instagram to see if it makes much difference! It contains Vitamins C and E which even out skin tone, and Arnica helps to fade out any bruising. 
I'm definitely one of those people who always, always carries anti-bac hand gel, and this super cute one from Merci Handy reminds me of the Bath & Body Works ones as it smells absolutely amazing and is such a handy size to throw in your bag! I find a lot of hand gels can smell very alcohol-y, but this New Wave fragrance is lovely and fresh without being overpowering. 
The final product is the Alterna Caviar CC Cream for hair. You apply this to towel dried hair before styling, and it promises the following 10 benefits: moisture, shine, smoothness, softness, UV protection, manageability, strength, anti-breakage, heat protection and light hold - phew! As someone who has super frizzy, thick hair, this sounds amazing so can't wait to give this a go! It also smells absolutely amazing - very luxurious and feminine. Plus, the 5* reviews are definitely selling it to me.

So there you have it! A great all-rounder box for April and some amazing new brands for me to try out. If you'd like to know how I get on with any of them, leave a comment or tweet me
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Sunday, 23 April 2017

New Skincare Bits | FIRST IMPRESSION/REVIEW


I'm really loving getting into my skincare at the moment. I love learning about what the ingredients really do for the skin and how to tailor your routine to best suit your particular skincare concerns. I'm sharing tons of info over on my Instagram stories if you want to hear more about this! However, on the blog I can go into a bit more detail so keep reading to see whether these products are what you need in your routine...
Today, I've got some mini reviews/first impressions of some new products I've been trying out. First up is the Origins Original Skin mask. This contains Rose Clay (a type of mild kaolin clay) so it helps to absorb excess oil/impurities on the skin. However, as this is a more mild type of clay, it is gentler and less drying on the skin so is great for more sensitive skin types. Using this frequently helps to reduce the appearance of pores and puffiness too. It also contains Willowherb, which is anti-inflammatory so great for rosacea and eczema. Finally, its third key ingredient is Jojoba beads, which provide a gentle exfoliation and are often used to treat acne. These are also biodegradable so no horrible plastic beads here! 
I actually was pleasantly surprised by this mask. Whilst I don't love the exfoliating beads (I find they're a bit hard to wash off and I always find I haven't got them all off by the time I do moisturiser!), the clay aspect of the mask is amazing and my skin really did feel firmer and clearer the next day. I will definitely be incorporating this into my routine every couple of weeks or so! You can get this for £24 on Look Fantastic (this is just a sample size in the photo!).
Secondly, I grabbed one of the new-ish Garnier Moisture Bomb sheet masks. I've been intrigued to try these out as I'm loving sheet masks at the moment - mostly because they are fun to apply and I love the serum you can massage into the skin afterwards! These contain Green Tea Extract which is anti-inflammatory, and also helps to promote the health and quality of collagen, therefore giving you firmer and more elastic skin. Secondly, it contains hyaluronic acid, which helps the skin to retain moisture (great for dry skin, obviously!), along with Glycerin which is an amazing moisturiser. I loved using this mask - it's only £2.99 so a bargain, although it does suggest using one 3 times a week which would definitely add up £££! The hole for the mouth is a bit small in my opinion, but it wasn't uncomfortable and you only have it on for 15 minutes. Afterwards, my skin felt and looked so glowy, and I massaged in the excess serum, topped with my usual moisturiser and my skin felt great. I love glowy skin too, and this definitely helped with that. I have normal-oily skin so can't say how good at moisturising it was, but the ingredients speak for themselves on that one! They do have a more moisturising one for dehydrated skin called the Revitalising Mask, which may be better for super dry skin. You can buy both these masks from Boots for £2.99

Have you tried either of these skincare products? And what are you loving in your skincare routine at the moment? Let me know in the comments! 
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Sunday, 9 April 2017

Best Highlighters for Pale Skin


If you follow me on Instagram, you'll know I'm a fake tan obsessive and am usually various shades of tan in my photos! However, my natural skin tone is super pale, and so I thought I'd help out my fellow fair gals today with my favourite highlighters for pale skin. I often find some highlighters can be too golden for my paler skin, so these four picks are what I'd recommend to anyone with fairer skin who still wants a strong glow! You can see swatches of my picks below:

(L-R: Charlotte Tilbury Bronze & Glow, The Balm Mary Lou-Manizer, Makeup Forever 13 Star Lit Powder, Benefit High Beam)
First up is the Charlotte Tilbury Bronze & Glow highlighter. As you can see from the swatches, this is the most subtle of the bunch, and is great for that soft 'lit from within' look - see this look. The powder is super finely milled and works on all skin types and ages. It is the most expensive at £49 but you do also get a fantastic contour powder, which you can see I've used a lot! 
Secondly is my favourite everyday one from the bunch - The Balm's Mary Lou-Manizer. It's a gorgeous light golden shade that looks gorgeous on every skin tone, but especially paler skin. It has a hint of silver in it which means it still shows up on pale skin and doesn't look too gold - see this look. It's such a bargain at £16 (but you can get it for £13.60 from Look Fantastic!) and I've had mine for years and still have loads left. It's very glowy, but I find it to be gorgeous for everyday as it doesn't look the slightest bit glittery or over the top. 
Next up is my very over the top shade - Makeup Forever's Star Lit powder in 13. This is very metallic and is really a pigment more than a specific highlighter, but I honestly love it to get that very strong highlighted look. I know it's not for everyone but I love it! It's very pigmented, so be careful when applying as a little really does go a long way. Also  because the shade is so light, it works perfectly with pale skin again - you can see it in this look here (notice how it's not as unwearable as you might first think!), and it's also the highlighter I used in my most recent Instagram with the blue lower lashline. You can grab a pot from Debenhams for £13 (although you may have to hunt it down - since Jaclyn Hill mentioned it on her Snapchat it's been pretty hard to get hold of!).
Finally, my liquid highlighter option - Benefit's High Beam. I've had this for years (as you can probably tell by my bottle of it!) and this is a beautiful pearly pink toned highlighter. You can mix it into foundation or apply as a regular highlighter - I personally like to top it off with a powder highlighter but you don't have to! It gives a very natural sheen to the skin, as it's a liquid so is great for drier skin or a more natural makeup look. As it's more pink toned, it works well with paler skin and again you only need the tiniest bit to get a gorgeous glow - I personally don't apply straight from the brush and usually dab some onto my finger so it blends into the skin a little bit easier.

So I hope this post was helpful - I always like to see what works on different skin tones so hopefully my experiences with highlighters will help someone else out too! Let me know if you have any of these, or what you fave highlighters are below - I'm definitely a highlighter junkie so always looking for more to try! 
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Sunday, 2 April 2017

Look Fantastic Beauty Egg Collection



Today's post is all about the limited edition Beauty Egg Collection from Look Fantastic. I feel like pretty much every beauty brand leapt on the bandwagon for beauty advent calendars, however this is the first beauty Easter egg I've seen, and I love the concept! The beautifully packaged box contains 7 products - all full size except one - to give a boost to your beauty stash this spring! There's a variety of products covering makeup, skincare, haircare and body care, adding up to £200 if bought separately. However, this fabulous box is only £60 and it's going to sell out fast! So, I thought I'd get this post up super quick so you can get a peek into what's inside:


Makeup
First is the Illamasqua Hydra Veil primer. This is actually my holy grail primer - you can read more about it in my full review here. It's honestly like a glass of water for your skin, and it's hydrating qualities mean it's a great base for makeup, and believe me when I say this ensures makeup stays on all night! The second makeup product is the Laura Gellar highlighter in Gilded Honey. I was so so excited to hear this was in the box as I've always wanted to try it! It's definitely a cult favourite product, providing a gorgeous golden glow to the skin - and if you're a regular reader you'll know I'm already highlighter obsessed! Keep an eye out for this popping up on my Instagram very soon. Thirdly, the Talika Lipocils Ink brow growth and makeup pen is included in the box. Mine is in the shade Brown (I believe this is the only shade included) and claims to stimulate eyebrow growth whilst also enhancing them with makeup. 20 years of research went into making this product, so I'm intrigued to try it, although I'm concerned the brown shade may be too red for my brows, but I will let you know! It comes in a pen form, and promises to be waterproof and sweat proof so may be good for holidays or the gym. However, I do have micro bladed brows so I may not be the best judge!

Skincare
The first skincare product included is the Algenist Ultimate Anti-Aging Cream. Now, at 20, I may not be the best to review it's anti-aging properties, however, it also promises to brighten the skin (I'm always looking for ways to add more glow!). It contains Capric Triglyceride and Hydrogenated Polyisobutene which are essentially oil substitutes, so you get all the benefits of oil (like maintaining elasticity and preventing water loss) without clogging the skin, so great for anyone with oily, sensitive or acne prone skin. It also contains Alguronic Acid, which is essentially a mix of algae extracts which claim to have anti-aging benefits. 
Secondly, you get the Filorga Optim-Eyes eye cream. This also contains Capric Triglyceride, along with hyaluronic acid which helps to retain moisture and therefore smooth and soften wrinkles or fine lines. It also claims to reduce dark circles by promoting the elimination of pigmented residues, and also reducing puffiness by increasing circulation to reduce swelling. Will definitely be interesting to try this one out! 

Body/Haircare
I thought I'd round off with the final two sections. In body care, you get the Molten & Brown body wash in Pink Pepperpod. I love a beautifully scented body wash and this smells so fresh for spring. Plus, as it is travel size, will be great to take away with me on my trips this year. And the final product in the box is the Phillip Kingsley Elasticizer in the limited edition Geranium and Neroli scent. I have always loved this hair mask and have used it for years now. It makes my hair so soft and more manageable. This contains Castor Seed Oil helps to retain moisture and prevent the scalp from drying, as well as preventing hair loss. Alongside this, Propylene Glycol also helps to soften the hair to make it easier to brush through. 

So that's my round up of the amazing Look Fantastic Beauty Egg! The link to buy is here. Are there any products in there that you're eager to try? Let me know what you think in the comments. 
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Sunday, 26 March 2017

Benefit They're Real 2-in-1 Lipliner/Lipstick | WORTH THE HYPE?




I think it's been quite a while since I was all over a new lipstick launch. These days, the world of makeup is swamped by liquid lipsticks that I barely wear a traditional lipstick these days. However, when this new concept from Benefit came out, I don't think I'd been this excited to place an order in a long time! The They're Real 'Double the Lip' 2-in-1 lipliner/lipstick mash up comes in cute packaging similar to their They're Real mascara, and winds up at the bottom to reveal a thin, slanted lipstick with a darker shade and a lighter shade. The idea is that the darker shade acts as your lipliner, and perfectly blends in the lighter lipstick to get an easy soft ombre lip without the need for extra products!
I got the shade Nude Scandal (obviously!), and you can see the swatch above. As you can see, the difference between the darker shade and lighter shade is barely visible so don't let the idea of having a super dark lip line put you off as that's really not the case. 
What I really love about these lipsticks is they are not super matte (like I'm used to with all the liquid lipsticks!) - they give a soft satin finish. They are nicely pigmented and glide onto the lips pretty easily. The lipliner concept is great for the top lip, as it helps to define the lips and get the shape you want, however, it gets a bit tricky on the bottom lip as I've found myself having to turn the bullet awkwardly to get the lipliner bit to properly line the lips. It is a bit annoying but hasn't put me off using it! You also have to be careful to use both the liner and lipstick evenly, so one side doesn't wear down quicker than the other! The only other thing I'd say is that the colour range isn't fantastic, there are currently only 6 shades, but no doubt Benefit will bring out more in time. I'd say this is a great easy option for those people not wanting to spend money on separate lipliners and lipsticks as I've never found the need to use one with this product! They're also a pretty reasonable £16.50 (for comparison, a MAC lipliner and lipstick would set you back £28) and you can get them from plenty of places - I got mine from ASOS for that extra student discount! 


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Sunday, 19 March 2017

My Top 5 Liquid Lipsticks


As you'll know if you follow my Instagram, I am always wearing liquid lipsticks. Something about the formulas and the colours draws me to them more than regular lipsticks so I have built up quite the collection. So, I thought I would post about my top 5 brands to buy liquid lipsticks from. I don't have specific lip swatches to post, but I will link to makeup looks I have done with the shades as all the shades have been featured on my Instagram at one point or another! 
Number 1 
Brand: Dose of Colors
Shades I own: Bare With Me, Truffle
My absolute favourite liquid lipsticks are the Dose of Colors ones. Bare With Me is honestly my favourite lip shade of all time. It's a soft pink shade that just suits so many skin tones and is a perfect everyday shade. You can get these from Beauty Bay (usually) but for some reason they are not online at the moment, and the Dose of Colors site for around £14/$18! I rarely show Bare With Me on my Insta because I am so scared it will run out and I won't be able to repurchase! I actually last wore it on my Insta back in May 2016, but I would wear it everyday if I could! Truffle is a beautiful brown toned nude that is perfect for that 90s look. I like that it's not too brown as that doesn't really suit my skin tone, and I've never found another liquid lipstick shade quite like it. Here's a swatch of it on my Instagram. The formula is super matte, but is the least drying I've found. It also smells of vanilla which is so delicious. 

Number 2
Brand: Jeffree Star Cosmetics
Shades I own: Androgyny, Mannequin
I know there is often a lot of controversy surrounding this brand, but these liquid lipsticks are honestly incredible. They feel so lightweight on the lips (Mannequin especially just feels like water!), dry really matte and feel very comfortable to wear. You can buy these on Beauty Bay or Beautylish for around £16. Androgyny is a gorgeous deep warm toned purpley shade, although I feel that it looks very different on different skin tones. I actually bought this because it looked so gorgeous on Jaclyn Hill, but I do think it looks very different on me (see this Insta). Mannequin is probably my second favourite lip shade ever after the Dose of Colors one. It's my perfect nude shade. I feel like it suits pretty much every makeup look I do, and is probably my most featured shade on my Instagram - see here, here and here

Number 3
Brand: Jouer 
Shades I own: Melon, Petale de Rose
The Jouer liquid lipsticks have definitely done the rounds on Instagram, and I have to say I was pretty late to the game. I got these two shades in a set for Christmas (from Cult Beauty), and I'm already dying to try new colours! Melon has become my everyday shade - the perfect mixture of pink and nude that works when I'm super pale and when I'm tanned. You can see it on me here. I haven't got round to doing a look with Petale de Rose yet, but it's a beautiful strong deep pink - I'm sure you've all gathered I gravitate more towards nudes by this point! The formula of these is incredible, almost mousse like in texture and dries super matte. I would say it's slightly less long lasting than the first two I've mentioned and it does wear off after eating more noticeably. However, they are super comfortable to wear and all the shades Jouer do are beautiful and look like they'd be flattering on everyone. I have my eye on the Skinny Dip lip topper from them next!

Number 4
Brand: Girlactik
Shades I own: Posh, Bashful, Blossom, Rustik, Sweet
I have had the pleasure of working with Girlactik this year, and I have to say I've completely fallen in love with their liquid lipsticks. They are harder for us UK girls to get their hands on, but if you are in the States, stock up! They also do offer international shipping on their website. I have to say, after lusting over them on Instagram for so long, I was certainly not disappointed. My favourite shades have to be Bashful - the most beautiful neutral nude (not too brown, not too pink), and Sweet - a gorgeous muted pink. You can see my lip swatch video here, and a look wearing Rustik here. The formula is lovely, and smells like cupcakes so it gets a thumbs up from me! 

Number 5
Brand: Lipland
Shades I own: Rezy (from the Amrezy collaboration)
Lipland is a bit less well known than the other brands I've mentioned but I thought I'd give them recognition for their gorgeous liquid lipsticks. I first heard of the brand when Amrezy collaborated with them, and again, they're harder for us UK girls to get hold of, so I struck lucky when I was in the US last year and picked up Rezy. Side note: I got mine from Ricky's NYC, an amazing makeup shop that stocks lots of online/Instagram brands. You can also get international shipping on their site. The shade is a beautiful peachy pink, absolutely perfect for summer. You can see me wearing this here. I would say the formula is slightly thinner and more mousse-like than all the other brands, and not quite as strongly pigmented. However, building up the colour is fine, and once you get the finished look, it has fantastic lasting power. 

So, that is my round up of my favourite liquid lipsticks! Let me know your favourite brands in the comments below - I'm always on the lookout for new brands to try. 
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