Hallelujah Hair

I’m so excited to write this post for you all as it’s my first little collaboration with the beautiful earth loving botanical brand Forest & Shore. They asked me to review their gorgeous hair oil, and I’m instantly in love. (I’m not just saying that!)

My hair has always been something I’m very particular about and don’t tend to skimp on products to keep it clean, fresh and healthy, even sometimes turning to professional salon products.

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A hair oil is something I’ve always considered a must have for your hair routine, I’ve been using the Loreal Professional Mythic Oil at the moment which keeps my ends conditioned and hydrated.

As if by fate my Hallelujah Hair Oil arrived just after I had washed my hair last Saturday Afternoon, perfect timing to add 2-5 drops to my towel dried hair through the ends and mid-lengths. My first impressions of this hair oil was love, the smell is amazing!
A gorgeous blend of Olive, Sesame, Coconut, Arnica, Rosemary and Lavender essential oils this product smells so loving and nourishing with the top notes of Lavender to calm and relax your senses.

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Having used the Hallelujah Hair Oil a few times now after washing my hair throughout the week, I just can’t get enough of the smell and the results are great too. My hair feels so soft I can’t stop playing with it, I do need to be careful though as the last time I think I used a bit too much as my hair does look a bit oily now. (Think I got a bit product happy)

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Being a packaging and design lover (kinda have to be with my job!) I must say this packaging speaks volumes for the brand, I love the delicate feel and slight natural texture to the box, with the added delicate floral and leaf sketched design to the top half gives the product a natural and ethical vibe, which is also great because they are 100% Organic! An organic hair oil that encourages hair growth as well as hydrating, you can’t go wrong at all.

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Price wise this product is mid range at £14.99 on Amazon, but I’m a firm believer in that you pay for what you get, so paying over £10 for a hair oil you know its going to be good and exceed your expectations. It’s also currently a #1 best seller on Amazon!

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So if you’re looking for a hair oil that does everything and more for your hair health as well as smelling great I believe this is the one. It comes in a 100ml bottle too so it will last you ages!

Have you tried a hair oil recently? Let me know in the comments below or find me on instagram or twitter 😀

Xx

November Empties

This post is dedicated to all you beautiful bloggers out there who have ever done an empties post, these have to be one of my favourites to read. I love finding out what everyone has been loving (or hating) throughout the month, so I decided to keep hold of my empties to do the same.

First empty of the month is the Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser in Grapefruit & Patchouli, I loved this cleanser have honestly been a bit lost without it! I won’t go into too much detail on this first product as I have written a post previously about it, you can find out more here.

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Next up is my hero beauty product, I adore this cleansing water. It’s a product I use religiously every day to either take my makeup off or freshen up in the morning. It’s gentle formula soothes my skin too always leaving it feeling clean and refreshed. Once again you can find out more in one of my previous posts here.

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A new addition to my daily routine the Nivea Daily Essentials Express Hydration Primer, I really enjoyed using this product as anything thats a two in one product is always a bonus! Saving a little time on preparing your skin for makeup is aways a good start to the day plus it helps if you’re anything like me and usually forget to use primer until half way through foundation application.

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This moisturiser was soft and creamy, almost a yogurt texture, but I cant help but feel a slight silicone texture too. I’m assuming this was the primer part of the double benefit product, which did put me off a little bit as all can imagine is putting plastic or jelly on my face.

Other than the slight jelly texture to the product overall I did enjoy using it, I felt it provided a great makeup base and kept my skin hydrated throughout the day.

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Next is another daily essential for me, my Urban Decay setting spray that is so old but always needed! This is another product I’ve dedicated a post already to so find out more here.

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last up is my favourite perfume ever, to be fair any perfume from Victoria Secret is amazing! This one was a gift from my boyfriend last Christmas so I’ve kept it just for using for best and nights out.

It’s a sweet fragrance which suits me perfectly as this is always the ones I go for. It has a mix of both floral and fruity scents that give it a young and vibrant feel.

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Also this bottle is so sweet with its little black bow on the side, it looks great on your dressing table too.

Have you tried any of my November empties? Let me know in the comments below or find me on instagram or twitter 😀

Xx

All night long

A setting spray? Why would you need that?

Oh my god, you need this in your life. Like, right now. Honestly, go now and head to feelunique.com. You won’t look back!

Yes, I was sceptical at first. I wasn’t sure why I needed a setting spray – setting spray is for the famous bloggers and MUAs, right? Plus, who knows what it actually is, other than a magical potion to keep your makeup in place all day?

Introducing your new best friend:

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Introducing your new best friend.

Of course, there are loads of other setting sprays out there. But, being a self-confessed Urban Decay fan, I’ve obviously opted for their All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray.

This is a product you think you can live without until you start using it. If you’re anything like me, you’ll have a little panic when the spray starts to spit at you at the end of the bottle! With its oil-free formula (win-win for me!) and temperature control technology, it really does leave your skin refreshed when you start the day with a spritz. Don’t ask me how, I don’t know either!

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I want to take a moment to appreciate the packaging of the All Nighter spray. The box and bottle are a soft matte texture that feels gorgeous and makes you want to use it. Rather than a shiny plastic, you’re met with a velvet finish that adds a touch of luxury. You know instantly that the product is going to work, and it’s going to work well.

I’ve only just finished a bottle that I’ve had for about a year. The one featured in my photos is a replacement I got for my birthday back in July, as I was worried my first bottle would run out. How wrong was I?! Now, when you click through to buy the All Nighter Spray, they have a different packaging. Yes – I’ve had mine so long that they’ve changed the packaging!

I totally agree with Urban Decay’s decision to change their packaging from white to a dark grey with pale purple text. (Don’t worry, they’ve kept that beautiful matte finish!) Having read a few articles, it seems that the brand’s founder wanted to revamp the bottle after finding that the white bottle was quickly getting dirty from every day use. Putting my old bottle against a brand new one shows just how dirty it’s gotten!

I think I might have to make a little Instagram post just to prove it!

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Anyway, enough about the box and packaging – that speaks for itself. As for the product, I remember being admittedly doubtful before I’d tried it. Now, having used it for so long, I can safely say that the lightweight formula seals your makeup without feeling like you’ve sprayed your face with glue. It also dries almost instantly, and so doesn’t feel like you’ve sprayed your face with water either!

I’ve used this spray through hot summers and cold winters, and even with watery eyes from the cold it continues to hold your makeup in place. It really is something magical.

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This little spray is also great while applying makeup too. For example, I spray my eyeshadow brushes before applying glitter-based colours as it helps to transfer and hold the glitter, creating a sharper and more sparkly look. This works especially well when teamed with Dust or Buzz from Urban Decay’s Naked 3 palette. It’s a truly versatile product!

Have you tried a makeup setting spray before? How long did your makeup last? Let me know in the comments below or find me on instagram or twitter 😀

Xx

Roll & Refresh

This week has been a bit hectic to say the least so I am so thankful for this little treat to brighten up my dull dark circles, yes I know I need more sleep but who has time for that! Christmas is coming!

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I’ve been looking for an eye roll on for a while as my eyes get dry end up watering which then leaves the creases of my eyes dry and irritable I’ve tried using some eye creams overnight but they never seemed to help too much. So off I went in search of one with a rollerball with the theory that this would help. (Not sure where I got that from but there we go!)

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After a bit of a search I found a few, one included the Garnier 5-in-1 BB eye roll on, in theory this fitted the bill but I wasnt keen on something tinted around my eye area as I thought this would just add to the irritation and not soothe it. Also if it was to dry out, I would end up with nice cracks around my eyes looking like major crows feet! Not attractive lets say. Have any of you tried it?

So neither the less I was once again attracted by marketing, this time from The Body Shop. I’ve always been a fan of The Body Shop and their values, I’ve even previously worked in my local Lakeside store, so was quite pleased to discover their Pomegranate Firming & Refreshing Eye Roll-On. I know Pomegranate smells amazing and provides health benefits from eating or drinking it so why would it not be good for your skin?

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Firstly, I do like the simplicity of the packaging, it didn’t come in a box, just a simple clear screw cap, I guess an eye roll on doesn’t really need any explanation, but I do like a nice box.

Anyway, It’s a lovely bright red in colour to reflect the red of the Pomegranate, with the shiny ball roller at the end. The actual product is almost like a serum you simply roll under and around your eye for instant refreshment and with continued use I am starting to feel the skin around my eyes skin firming up.

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I’m definitely going to continue using this roll-on as it has almost certainly helped with my dry eyes especially in the mornings.

Is there anything else you’ve tried to help with dry eyes? Let me know in the comments below or find me on instagram or twitter 😀

xx

Gorgeous sweep

This post is so overdue, these brushes are gorgeous! They’re so soft so your makeup glides on and I mean they look stunning so what’s not to love!

My collection isn’t complete (yet) but these beauties from the Bold Metals collection really are my staple brushes.

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First is the Real Techniques Bold Metals 101 which to be honest I need two of! I keep using this brush for applying concealer around the redness on my nose and around my eyebrows but I’ve recently started using  it with eyeshadow in the eye creases. With its dense cluster of bristles and tapered end it works so well to apply darker colours nice and precise.


Next up is the 301 stippling brush perfect for applying liquid foundation. I’ve recently cleaned this one as got a bit too mucky! I use this brush to apply the first layer of foundation and usually then go over the top with my beauty blender. Again with this brush you get loads of bristles packed in and with them so soft leaves you with a perfectly even coverage.


Possibly my favourite brush of the collection, the 300. I use this brush for applying blusher or highlighter, I’m currently using the MAC Soft & Gentle mineralise skinfinish in B16 which has a slight bronze colour to it hence the brown tinge on the brush. This brush is lovely for applying highlight and blush with its tapered end and long bristles.


Lastly is the largest of the Bold Metals collection, the 100. This brush is great for fixing powder and overall blending your face together, it’s also a great touch up brush and again so soft, so yep one of those brushes you just sweep across your face for the hell of it! We all do it…


There’s a few others in the Bold Metals collection that I hope to add after Christmas. Do any of you have them already and would recommend?

What’s in my bag?

If your anything like me, your always carrying round a load of rubbish in your bag, so I decided to have a little clear out of all the receipts and odd bits of paper or packets. Whilst doing this I remembered all the ‘what’s in my bag’ YouTube videos I’d watched previously and figured why not do a blog post on it? Everyone is a bit nosey right?!  I like to call it curious.

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So here goes, all photographed on my scarf blanket, which I adore! (think will need its own post!)

I carry all my bits and bobs and essentials in my gorgeous Kurt Geiger Saffiano Tote bag which my boyfriend kindly bought for me last Christmas. I love it with its little zip compartment in the middle for all the important stuff, I keep my purse in there all safe and sound. Plus two large main sections either side and then another two thin sections next to that, which are very handy for quick access to say lipstick and mirror. Mine is in one of my favourite colours, grey with little gold detailing, I love the structure of the bag too it holds its shape and sits perfectly on your arm without looking oversized. It comes with a longer strap tucked inside too which is handy to whip out when you need both hands after buying too much shopping!!

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Onto product wise now and first up is my Medik8 Hydr8 B5 hand cream, it has an SPF 25 along with anti-pollution technology which helps protect your hands from the world! Another plus it smells great too, a lovely light lemon scent, a little squidge on your hands and it instantly gets to work, it doesn’t feel greasy or take ages to rub in like some hand creams so no sitting there with fingers spread waiting for it to dry!

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Next is the Perfect Match La Touche Magique from Loreal in the shade Rose Beige, I use this more as a concealer to hide bags under my eyes and any blemishes which decide to appear (loads right now for some reason) it’s lighter than my skin colour so brightens up my colour, teamed with my foundation on top and I’m left with a clear base to start my daily contour. The highlighting concealer comes with a brush attached for easy application and you simply twist the bottom to release the product up into the brush, simple! The brush is nice and soft too which makes application even and quick. This product is also good of outlining your brows, I do use a smaller brush to do this neatly though.

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Next, if your following me on Instagram you may have already seen me mention this little beauty, the compact powder in invisible matte from Clinique. I love using this to touch up my makeup throughout the day, and as its translucent you aren’t left with the caked on look, which nobody loves to be honest. The compact comes with a handy touch up sponge and a large mirror on top, perfect handbag essential!

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An all time favourite of mine, due to both packaging and product! I love the twist up compact design of the CHANEL Coco Mademoiselle eau de toilette. It just attracts you with its pearly white case and gold top, you twist the top half and up pops the gold top to spritz. And the perfume, oh my its gorgeous! I feel like everyone loves this perfume and its no wonder! It is expensive I’ll be honest, but 100% worth it, with the compact kit you get 3x refills along with the on the go casing. Love love love.

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This little one is a relatively new addition to my bag with thanks to my sister, she bought me this MAC lipstick for my birthday back in July. I love the red design and slightly sparkly black packaging, makes it feel that bit more special compared to the regular ones. This one is the Viva Glam 2 a muted pink-beige with shimmer, I love the colour was the perfect choice for my first MAC lipstick!

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Lastly is my handbag essential I can’t be without, I think I have one at work on my desk, one by my bed and one in my bag! Maybe slightly obsessed you could say! It’s the one and only Baby lips from Maybelline in Dr Rescue – Menthol. It’s so caring and hydrating for your lips and has a slight minty fragrance which leaves you feeling fresh and clean. One you definitely need in your handbag!

Other than the obvious keys, phone purse, umbrella and even a notebook are there any beauty essentials you must have in your bag?

 

Why not join me on Instagram 🙂

Nail Recovery

After taking the plunge to remove my gel nail extensions after having them just over a year, I was starting to worry my natural nails needed some more strength. Surprisingly my natural nails were pretty good under the gel extensions, you hear horror stories of people not having much left after taking their fakes off. I’d like to think its all thanks to my fab nail technician! (hey Vik!)

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I always find my nails grow quite quickly, with tapping away on the keyboard at work and general day to day tasks, I was pretty careless with my nails as I knew how strong they were, other than opening can’s of Diet Coke, anyone with fake nails knows how much of a risk that is! (I use a ruler!) So not having any form of protection on my nails, I wanted to find some conditioning nail polish that would restore the strength and generally give them a treat.

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My first purchase was the Super Mani 7 in 1 treatment, I mean 7 treatments sounds perfect.

It claims to:

  • Encourage growth with Keratin
  • Nourishes with Argan Oil
  • Promotes shine
  • Hydrates with Vitamin E
  • Smoothes the nail surface
  • Protects from breakage

Phew.

After using this as base coat under nail polish (I’m not keen on bare nails) for a few weeks,  I have found that my nails seem stronger and less prone to breaking, I’ve also found the colouring on my nail beds has got brighter too. I must warn you though it does have a stronger nail polish smell than normal nail varnishes.

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My second purchase was the Mini Mask, Camouflage, Colour and Condition. I loved the idea of this polish as it promotes strengthening and conditioning as well has having a lovely pinky colour to it. Usually conditioning polishes are all clear, and as I mentioned I’m not a lover of he clear shiny nail look. This polish left a beautiful soft pink colour with a slight matt texture to it. Perfect.

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Another upside to this polish was the brush itself, you can sort of see from my photo it was slightly tapered which made it easy to apply reaching all edges and creating a nice even coat of colour.

In order to give my nails a proper treat, I’ve been using these both together, it’s been keeping my nails neat and building them up to be tough, guess what I can open cans now 😉

Have any of you had a break from fake nails, what did you do to give your natural nails a treat?

My Hero

It takes a lot to get me to buy something more than once, as 9 times out of 10 I’ve bought something new to try, I’m such a sucker for new product marketing! Probably because I work in marketing myself but yeah…

I was trying to remember the first time I tried the Garnier Micellar cleansing water and I honestly can’t remember! It was probably when it launched a few years ago and I was tempted by the marketing. Today it’s something I cannot live without, It’s my one hero product I cannot be without. End of.

Gone are the days putting up with trying different makeup wipes trying to find ones that didn’t sting my eyes when I took my makeup off, with no luck might I add, so if anyone can recommend any would greatly appreciate! Micellar cleansing has had a big boom in the beauty industry recently and seems to be the go to for cleansing, I’m not surprised how well its doing, every brand I know is bringing out a Micellar water, Clarins, Sanctuary, Nivea, ESPA and ELIMIS.

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Garnier have also started expanding their Micellar range including Cleansing water for different skin types including oily & combination, sensitive, dry & sensitive and blemish prone, this way you can cleanse your skin without the worry of damaging your skin at all. Personally I’m not keen on the idea of having an oil in a cleanser, I mean I get the idea of get norishing oils into your skin to hydrate it, but if you’ve got an oily skin like me it’s like my worst nightmare! My skin makes enough oil of its own without me adding more.

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I have however tried the Skin Active Micellar Water for blemish prone skin, though I found this actually really dried out my skin which is hard to do trust me!  I also found it actually gave my skin more redness and it didn’t smell great either to be honest.

Ever since then I’ve not swayed from the sensitive skin cleansing water, It’s so gentle on my skin but does the job perfectly, without having to hardly rub my eyes at all, which is great for my sensitiveness. I’m quite regimented in how I use the water now too,  4 large cotton pads (like the ones featured in my pictures), add a few squirts of the water to the pads, then squish them all together to absorb the water (I use quite a lot which I probably shouldn’t but yeah, have I told you I love it!), I then use one pad for each eye using both sides to make sure I get the tough bits of mascara on my lash lines, then the last two one in each hand and sweeping across the rest of my face, I then splat the together dirty sides together and use the clean (ish) sides to sweep the cleansing water down my neck and under my ears where I usually contour with bronzer. The Cleansing Water works by containing micelles that act like ‘dirt magnets’, lifting away make-up and impurities making makeup removal pain free and easy. Even if your not removing makeup it cleanses all the everyday dirt build up leaving you all cleansed and clean.

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The Garnier Micellar Water is also available in three handy sizes, the normal 400ml for everyday use, a larger 700ml for the lovers like me and a tiny 125ml travel size. Though a small bone to pick, why make the travel size 25ml too big for plane travel? Seems a bit odd to me and my mum (who is very frustrated by this). So if you have any idea why they decided to do this please let me know!?

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Anyway, the Micellar family also still growing with the new Micellar Cleansing Gel Wash and most recently the Micellar Cleansing Wipes, both of which I’m quite anxious to try and see if they irritate my eyes at all, especially the wipes as I’ve had so much trouble with cleansing wipes before.

For now though I’m sticking with my beauty hero, would love to hear your beauty hero’s, the one product you can’t be without.

Bare Essentials Haul

Bare Essentials has always been a high-end cosmetic brand on the High street, however to be honest I’ve never given it a second look. Part of the reason being a few years back I was approached to test the mineral foundation in the middle of a shopping centre, which I don’t know about you, but it immediately put me off as it makes me feel under pressure to buy something. (I’m not saying there is anything wrong with that, just not my cup of tea)

Another reason the brand has passed me by could be I’m a devoted Urban Decay fan, so with Bare Essentials being a key competitor of theirs, I’ve never ventured off the path, so to speak!

So why this time?

To be honest I was on the search for a new liquid eyeliner in a pen form, as was under the impression this would be the easiest way to create the perfect eyeliner flick. Having tried the Collection Extreme 24 hour felt tip liner as a start I was getting on really well with it but It was starting to dry up and the tip was quite big. So on my search I was looking for a new one with a smaller tip in order to hopefully have more control over the ‘flick’ and create a more dramatic look.

 

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After going online and heading straight to my beloved Urban Decay, I looked at the Perversion fine point eye pen all seemed simple until reading a few reviews people were finding it a bit ‘flakey’, which yes they might have been being a bit picky but even so it made me think twice. Just below in the similar products was the Bare Minerals Lash Domination Ink Liner, so I decided to have a look and see what people were saying with this one. All the reviews seemed really positive saying that it left a sharp very black line that lasted all day. Perfect? I also liked the indication of the 0.6 with of the tip knowing I could be quite precise with that.

I must say after using it a few times now I’m really impressed, its so pigmented and glides on so smoothly, I mean sometimes too smoothly, I ended up with eyeliner up to my eyebrow the first time! So yeah still doesn’t make you an eyeliner pro but it certainly helps! If you’re one of my Instagram followers you may have seen my post recently about trying to keep practising as much as I can, and I think its paying off!

While I was on the Bare Essentials page I decided to order a few bits and bobs at the same time to have a good try out of the brand. One being the Lash Domination Mascara, I was low on mascara so I thought was worth a go. I haven’t tried the mascara as much as everything else, and to be honest the few times I have tried it out I’ve found the wand to be quite big for my eyes, not sure if that’s the wand being big or my eyes being small but either way was a bit awkward to use especially for my lower lashes. The wand was also more of a plastic comb which to be honest I’m not usually a fan of as I don’t feel it applies as much product as opposed to a ‘fluffy’ wand. Has anyone else found this?

 

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Another product in the haul was the Complexion Rescue, a tinted hydrating gel cream. It works in the same way as a tinted moisturiser or bb cream, evening out your skin tone ready for your makeup application. It also contains an SPF 30 which makes it an added winner in my book, honestly the best anti-ageing tip ever is to protect your skin from the sun’s UVA and UVB rays.

The only thing I don’t like as much about this product is due to having oily skin I’m finding I need to have a blot and top up of finishing powder throughout the day.

 

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The next product is the Gen Nude™ Matte Liquid Lip Colour in Swag, firstly there is the name I mean I had to pick the colour simply for the name right? The packaging is nice with these too, a matt touch finish on the tube reflects the texture of the lip colour itself. One of the stand out features to this lip colour is the staying power, it really does last all day, that’s if you can resist licking your lips when they smell so good of coco/vanilla! Being a liquid lipstick it does come out quite a lot so be careful, a little does go a long way, I’d also recommend a lip liner to go with it to keep your edges nice and neat.

 

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Lastly in the haul is the MATTE Foundation SPF 15, mine is in the colour medium (C25) which to be honest I’m not sure if its 100% but not bad for a guess!  I’m new to a powder foundation as I’ve always gone for a liquid foundation thinking the coverage would be better however I’m pleasantly surprised with this powder foundation, especially topped on the Complexion Rescue it creates a flawless base. I’s also quite fun to put on! Tap tap tap into the lid then swirl it round with a powder brush, makeup should be fun so this is a winner to me.

Having oily skin as I mentioned earlier, this foundation helps to absorb excess oil and eliminate shine for a natural looking matte finish, unlike other liquid foundations I’ve tried that have left me shiny after just a few hours, and lets face it no one likes a shiny forehead!

Have you ventured out of your comfort zone into a new brand? Did you find a new hero product?

SkinnyTan Mousse

Who doesn’t love a golden tan? Having drawn my holiday tan out for as long as possible it’s now time to fake it. I wanted to try something new to my usual go to self tanner as I’ve used the No7 tanning mousse for years and sometimes you fancy a change right?

After a bit of a look about, a few friends asking if I’d used SkinnyTan, plus seeing another friend come into work glowing after trying it out (unfortunately not using the roller!) I knew it was worth a try.

First impressions were all good, I mean you know I don’t buy things unless they have good packaging and this certainly doesn’t disappoint, how striking and cute is the little chevron pattern? After finding the SkinnyTan section in Superdrug, I was surprised by the variety in the range, each identified by a different colour chevron, I didn’t realise how many products they had! Everything your tanning dreams could want from a gradual tanner to an after glow gloss, I cant wait to try some combinations of the range.

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After prepping my skin in the shower with a soft exfoliator, (was a cheap Tesco one that did the job) and ensuring my skin was completely dry, tanning mitt at the ready I don’t know why I was so excited.

Ok so I’m not going to lie the mousse came out a slightly dark black/green colour which really put me off, it looked like I was rubbing almost charcoal or dirt on my skin. I persevered anyway knowing the results my friends had with the product, and I must say other than the colour shocking me I was loving the rest. The fragrance was pleasant, wasn’t strong or overbearing as I know some self tanners can be, and It was fairly mess free too meaning no funny marks (other than when trying to clean the lid I got it over my little finger). The mousse texture made the product easy to rub into my skin too leaving an instant colour so you could easily see where more was needed or simply needed to be rubbed in a bit, leaving you with a streak free tan.

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The SkinnyTan Mousse certainly also impressed me in the bedroom department, you know that awful brown mark that usually gets left in your bed after a night of tanning? Was none to be seen here! My white bedding (I know it was risky) was hardly marked at all!

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I left my tan to develop overnight and I have to say It looked really dark by the morning I was a bit worried!

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Following a quick shower, thankfully the darkness washed away leaving a gorgeous glowing colour. To be honest I was hoping it would have been a bit darker considering how dark it looked while developing though I’ve no doubt you could layer your tan up if you wanted a darker tan. I believe they also do a darker formulation in the mousse so this could always be an option too if you prefer a darker tan.

I can definitely say I loved this product, all be it with the funny black/green colour to start with, I was happily left with a summer glow. I don’t know what it is about having a tan but it gives you more confidence? Your clothes look better, you just feel happier.