January Product Empties 20′

January is upon us, and it’s time to kickstart a whole new decade. A new year usually brings upon a time of reflection, re-evaluation, and also a feeling of promise to what the new year would have in store for us.

A new year also reminds me to a bit of a clear out and bring out the big pile of empty products stacking up in the corner of my room.

Time to have a declutter

I’ve finally finished a fragrance. I think that it has actually take me years to finish my Jo Malone Nectarine Blossom & Honey Cologne. It’s definitely a very sweet spring-like scent. I probably won’t repurchase this at the moment because I have  quite a few fragrances that are similar. I like to chop and change the fragrances I wear with each occasion and different season and often I get bored of the same scent and pass them onto friends so that they can enjoy them.

Over the past couple of months, I have had really bad bouts of eczema on my hands, usually caused my stress. I could have one bad day and I would wake up the following morning with swollen, itchy and very dry hands, which would take months to shift. I would share pictures, but I think you can probably picture what I’m talking about haha! Scented products didn’t bother my hands at all so I could still use my beloved La Roche-Posay Lipikar Hand Repair Cream, as well as L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream. I even finished off my Kiehl’s Intensive Treatment and Moisturizer when I found out that it was back in stock after what felt like years of being unavailable.

 L'Occitane Kiehl's La Roche-Posay

Of course it wouldn’t be an empties post for me without mentioning my No7 Lash Extender Mascara. It provides both length and volume without breaking down and leaving pieces all down my face. I also used up two Chanel complexion products. In July I discovered the Les Beiges Eau de Teint Water Fresh Tint. It was popping up all over YouTube and seemed like the perfect product for me. In the warmer months I try to wear less makeup and focus on having glowy skin. The product was so hard to find as it was out of stock everywhere. Eventually by pure luck I found it in Harrods. It gives the perfect ‘your skin but better’ look and was my absolute favourite for months. Then when it came to re-purchase, it was still out of stock everywhere, so I went back to a different foundation in the range, the Les Beiges Healthy Glow Gel Touch Foundation Cushion. This foundation gives a a bit more coverage than the Water Tint but has a similar effect. I won’t be buying any more cushion refills unless the Water Tint goes out of stock again, because it dries up very quickly and has an incredibly high cost per wear because of this.

In terms of skincare empties, I’ve used up a lot of my favourites such as Clinique Moisture Surge Moisturiser, Drunk Elephant C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream, Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish Sweet Orange and Mint and La Roche Posay Serozinc Mist. It took me a while to use up Vichy Mineral 89. I was using it at night but it always felt like it wasn’t as hydrating as my other serums, but later I discovered that it performed a lot better in the morning as the last step of my routine before makeup.

Bath and Shower –
Clarins Tonic Bath & Shower Concentrate
Rituals Sea Treasure Shower Foam
The Body Shop Raspberry Shower Gel

Fragrance –
Jo Malone Nectarine Blossom & Honey

Hair –
The Body Shop Ginger Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Nioxin Scalp Therapy Revitalizing Conditioner

Hand and Body –
Kiehl’s Intensive Treatment and Moisturizer
La Roche-Posay Lipikar Hand Repair Cream x2
L’Occitane Shea Butter Dry Skin Hand Cream

Makeup –
Chanel Les Beiges Eau De Teint Water Fresh Tint
Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Gel Touch Foundation Refill
No7 Lash Extender Mascara

Skincare –
Clarins Instant Eye Make-Up Remover
Clinique Moisture Surge
Drunk Elephant C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream
La Roche-Posay Serozinc
Lancome Eau Micellaire Douceur
Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser Sweet Orange and Mint
Vichy Mineral 89

Hy-Care x3
Biotrue Solution x2
Carex Aloe Vera Hand Gel

2019 Favourites

It’s that time of year again! It’s time to do a big old roundup of everything that I have loved using this year. I find these posts very useful to revisit throughout the year, as a little reminder of what were my absolute favourites and what I should put back into my routine. I have definitely been trying to finish products and not to hoard/ overbuy items unnecessarily.

Every year I like to buy the Christmas limited edition Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser. Not only does it always smell amazing, but it’s my favourite second cleanse product in my routine. Its light creamy texture makes it so easy to use and remove. I definitely prefer the scent of the Christmas editions over the original Cleanse and Polish. My only wish is that the brand would continue the line throughout the year so that I wouldn’t need to stock pile at Christmas.

My skincare routine has remained pretty similar to last years round of of my favourites. My focus has still been to pack in as much moisture into my skin as possible. The most notable brands that I like to swap between are La Roche-Posay, Kiehl’s, Clinique and Clarins. I’ve also tried to scale back on the amount of products I have in my routine, because I am aware that my consumption can get a bit excessive at times, but also to allow the products to work, instead of putting layers and layers of different ingredients on.

Favourite products 2019

My sensitive scalp causes issues when it comes down to using shampoo. I don’t know whether I have an allergy or what, but it seems that I can use any shampoo however, the next day after using it I get very very itchy. I definitely don’t need to tell you that it isn’t pleasant having to constantly scratch your head at work and then to receive really strange looks from your colleagues haha! The only hair products that I found to not have this issue is The Body Shop Ginger Shampoo and the Kérastase range.

To be honest I haven’t actually worn that much makeup over this year. When I have done, I’ve tried to create the most natural look possible. My absolute favourite product being the Chanel Les Beiges Eau de Teint Water Fresh Tint. The product is made from 75% water which makes it incredibly lightweight and hydrating on the skin. The way I apply it is by pumping two pumps onto the back of my hand and using the brush provided with the product. I then swirl the product around popping the encapsulated pigments so that it applies perfectly onto the skin. I then follow this with the Nude by Nature Loose Finishing Powder to any particularly shiny areas and voila my natural healthy glowy look is complete!

Favourite products

2019 Favourites –

Shampoo – The Body Shop Ginger Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Heat Protectant – Kérastase Smoothing Taming Milk
Shower – Rituals Shower Foam
Hand Cream – La Roche-Posay Lipikar Hand Repair Cream
Body Lotion – Garnier Intensive 7 Days Lotion

Eye Makeup Remover – Garnier Express 2in1 Eye Make-up Remover
Makeup Remover – La Roche-Posay Micellar Water Gel
Cleanser – Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser (Sweet Orange and Mint)
Toner – Fresh Rose Hydration Toner
Eye Cream – Drunk Elephant C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream
Serum – La Roche-Posay Hyalu B5 Serum
Moisturiser – Kiehl’s Calendula Serum-Infused Water Cream
Mask – Clarins SOS Comfort Face Mask

Primer – NARS Smooth & Protect Primer
Eyeshadow Primer – Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion
Foundation – Chanel Les Beiges Eau de Teint Water Fresh Tint
Powder – Nude by Nature Translucent Loose Finishing Powder
Eyeshadow – Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette
Highlight – Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow
Bronzer – Hourglass Ambient Lighting Bronzer
Mascara – No7 Lash Extender Mascara
Lip: YSL Volupté Liquid Colour Balm

Drunk Elephant Brand Review

Haven’t heard of Drunk Elephant? Where have you been? It was definitely the talk of the town for a good few months at the end of 2018. They are a “clean compatible” skincare brand which creates products without what they call the ‘Suspicious 6’. They believe that Essential Oils, Drying Alcohols, Silicones, Chemical Sunscreens, Fragrance/Dyes and SLS and the root of most skin issues.

The brand first launched in the UK in October 2018 to SpaceNK and Cult Beauty. There was a huge buzz around launch day with mounds of content being uploaded online by bloggers and influencers just like any other huge brand launch. Of course being quite a big skincare enthusiast myself, I was very excited to try a few products from the brand. I really liked the simple design with the white bottles and the fun coloured tops.

At the time of the launch, I was actually in New York for a few days for a holiday. The first opportunity I had, I went into a Sephora to have a look at the range and test a few products. In the end I picked up the Inspector Drunk Night Kit, which had a full size T.L.C Framboos Glycolic Night Serum and 4 miniatures so that I could try a couple of different products without spending too much. In the end I realised that I should have just waited to buy it at home in London, because it ended up being cheaper after the price was reduced due to confusion of setting up a brand in a new continent.

The C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream is the only eye creams i’ve used that has made a noticeable difference to my under eye area as soon as I started using the product. It smooths and brightens, whilst still feeling light. I’ve already purchased my second full size version of this product. That’s how much I love it!

The B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum is great at boosting hydration, but it’s a product I probably won’t repurchase because I prefer using Kiehl’s Hydro-Plumping Re-Texturizing Serum Concentrate or La Roche-Posay’s Hyalu B5 Serum.

The Beste No.9 Jelly Cleanser is a nice and light morning cleanse product. I wouldn’t use it remove makeup as I feel like you’ll need a lot of product to do so, and you’ll run out very very quickly. I won’t be repurchasing this either because I find that it leaves a sticky residue on the skin after washing.

The T.L.C Framboos Glycolic Night Serum is definitely the stand out product for me in the whole range. This is the first time that I have ever tried an AHA based serum. I usually use Glycolic Acid in toner form, my favourite being Pixi Glow Tonic which I usually use a few times a week as a chemical exfoliant. T.L.C is a step up from that. It’s a blend of Glycolic and Salicylic Acid which does wonders on my skin. It brightens, improves texture and skin tone. When I first started using the product, it tingled a bit, but that soon goes away after frequent use, and it doesn’t cause any redness either. I usually use T.L.C every other day followed by the Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil for a boost of moisture and to complete my routine. On the alternate days I like to use the Lala Retro Whipped Cream both day and night to hydrate my dry skin.

Overall, I think there are some real gems in the range which I will continue to repurchase, however I do believe that if you don’t have any problems with the “Suspicious 6” then you don’t necessarily need to splash out on these products. I would definitely recommend buying a mini set if you are in the market of trying these products to see if they suit your skin before grabbing the full size, and they are perfect for travel too!

June Product Empties ’19

I think its been far too long since I’ve posted about my empty products, over half a year in fact! I think it’s about time that I empty my big bag that’s gathering dust into the recycling bin.

When it comes to hand cream, I never stray too far from my La Roche-Posay Lipikar Hand Repair Cream. It’s the perfect texture and is not too heavily scented. My other favourite is the Garnier Intensive 7 Days Restoring Hand Cream, which is easier to find and stocked in most drug stores and supermarkets.

As a lens wearer I go though countless bottles of eye drops and lens solution. I am definitely guilty of wearing lenses for too many hours, so I always have a bottle of Hylo-Tear to combat dryness.

Nothing new in the cleansing category for me, I will always go through micellar waters/ gels for makeup removal as well as a separate product for my eyes, followed by my Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish in Sweet Orange and Mint for a second cleanse. My skincare routine is all about packing in the hydration. All the products in my routine are designed to combat dryness with lots of hyaluronic acid as well as vitamin C. The La Roche-Posay HyaluB5 and the Kiehl’s Hydro-Pluming Re-Texturising Serum are my favourites to alternate between. I already had back ups of both even before I had finished them.

Product Empties

I’ve definitely had a clean up of my makeup stash recently and found new homes for products that I don’t really use anymore. My cushion foundations unfortunately had to go. I love the texture of them however both the L’Oreal and the Lancome cushions dried up very quickly within just a few months since opening. I probably won’t be repurchasing them as they are simply not great value for money. I had the same issue with my Clinique Touch Base for Eyes, it dried out very quickly and I much prefer eyeshadow primers that come in a squeezy tube or with a doe foot applicator.

Bath and shower is a category that I don’t usually spend that much money on. As long as it smells good, I’m happy. I found a mini L’Occitane Almond Shower Oil in my cupboard that I was saving for when I travel. I realised that it would probably be a bit risky to take it away just incase it leaked everywhere so I popped it in my shower to use it up. It has slowly become my favourite and probably my most indulgent shower product. It’s so hydrating, smells amazing, plus it’s great to use when shaving. I have already gone and bought the full size.

Bath and Shower –
Imperial Leather Cherry Blossom & Peony Shower Gel
L’Occitane Amande Shower Oil
Rituals Energy Bubbles
Sanctuary Spa White Lily & Damask Rose Body Wash

Hair –
Kerastase Specifique Anti-dandruff Shampoo
L’Oreal Elvive Extraordinary Clay Conditioner
Tresemme Keratin Smooth Heat Activated Treatment

Hand and Body –
Garnier Intensive 7 Days Restoring Hand Cream
La Roche-Posay Lipikar Hand Repair Cream x2
Mixa Anti-Dryness Body Lotion

Makeup –
Beautyblender Pure Solid Cleanser
Becca First Light Priming Filter
Clinique Touch Base for Eyes
L’Oreal Nude Magique Cushion Foundation
Lancome Miracle Cushion
No7 Lash Extender Mascara

Skincare –
Bioderma Sensibio H20 Make-up Removing Micelle Solution
Clinique Take The Day Off Makeup Remover x2
Clinique Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief
Clinique Fresh Pressed Daily Booster x2
Drunk Elephant C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream
Kiehl’s Rare Earth Deep Pore Cleansing Masque Mini
Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser, Sweet Orange & Mint
Liz Earle Instant Boost Skin Tonic
La Roche-Posay Rosaliac Micellar Make-Up Removal Gel
La Roche-Posay HyaluB5 Serum x2
Pixi Hydrating Milky Mist

Carex Aloe Vera Hand Gel x2
Hy-Care x3
Hylo-Tear x2

Product Empties

It’s oddly satisfying when you finish a product and get to start afresh. All in all, I think I’m doing pretty well at shopping my stash at the moment and trying to avoid buying more product, but sometimes I just can’t resist getting a good deal and stocking up.

2018 Favourites

I think it’s about time that I share what I’ve enjoyed using the most over the past year. I’m not really one to do monthly favourites because my routine doesn’t generally change a great deal month to month. However I love doing an annual roundup, and almost re-discovering products in my own stash that I’ve forgotten about.

Let’s start with fragrance. Back in New York, on the last day of my trip I made my last stop at Sephora before heading to JFK. I really didn’t need to get anything. To be honest I shouldn’t have gone in because I had literally been in a different Sephora every single day of the trip. I saw a stand for a Chloe fragrance. I was almost going to walk straight past it because you can buy it at home, but there was a promotion for a fragrance I had not seen before. Chloe Nomade is very different to the other fragrances I own. It has fruity notes with an intense oak base. I was only able to get a travel spray because I had no more space in my suitcase. It came with a free scented to candle to match and also a bespoke illustration from the artist ‘Bang’. As soon as I got home I bought the full size.

Shampoos are products I constantly change. Once I finish a product, I would just pick out the next one to use. However, the one product that I will always go back to is the Kérastase Specifique Anti Dandruff Shampoo. It is the only shampoo that helps with my dry and itchy scalp. My favourite heat protectant is also from the Kérastase range. The Smoothing Taming Milk helps keep my baby hairs at bay.

The best shower product I have used is the L’Occitane Almond Shower Oil. I first discovered this when the brand did a collaboration with The Anna Edit and Lily Pebbles and released a beauty bag. The shower oil is the perfect indulgent shower product for an evening pamper.

I’m not the biggest fan of body butters, purely because of the amount of work needed for the product to be absorbed into the skin. I much prefer body lotions. My favourite was the Mixa Anti-Dryness Lotion. It leaves your skin so smooth and hydrated. My hand cream of the year was definitely the La Roche-Posay Lipikar Hand Repair Cream. It sinks into the skin quickly and isn’t greasy.

Last year I was definitely on the hunt to find products that put as much moisture back into my dry skin as possible. Some of my favourites were Kiehl’s Iris Extract Activating Treatment Essence, Pixi Hydrating Milky Mist, La Roche-Posay HyaluB5 Serum and Kiehl’s Calendula & Aloe Soothing Hydration Masque.

The best products I’ve tried for makeup removal were Clinique Take the Day Off and Emma Hardie Moringa Cleansing Balm. The next step in my routine would be the Pixi Glow Tonic, which I would use on alternate days.

Eye creams have always been a step that I used to skip. This was because I had never found one that actually did much. They were all ok but definitely not memorable. This was until I discovered Drunk Elephant’s C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream. It does a great job at brightening and smoothing the eye contour. La Roche-Posay Effaclar H was a re-discovery for me. I had just run out of Clinique Moisture Surge and wanted to switch up my routine a bit. I found Effaclar H in my already open box and it managed to pull me out of my ‘only water-based moisturiser’ rut. Haha! It really helped with soothing my occasional hormonal breakout.

Now let’s talk about some of my makeup favourites. NARS has been my go-to brand for primers. I can’t wear any eyeshadow without applying NARS Tinted Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base first. I got into the habit of just using my concealer on my eyelids, but found that by midday my eyeshadow would crease. Then I tried Nars and have not gone back. My eye makeup lasts till the end of the day and still looks perfect.

My everyday foundation was definitely the Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation followed by either the matching powder or bareMinerals Invisible Light Translucent Powder Duo. Concealer is a step I often forget when i’m rushing out of the house in the morning. When I have more time, I love using the YSL Touche Éclat to brighten my under eyes. My trusty Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit 3 is my favourite for both my highlight, bronzer and even a light eyeshadow. On dressier days I like to use Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette or my Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Palette.

No7 still continues to win on the mascara front. I just can’t find any other product that does not smudge under the eyes or have any fall out quite like the No7 Lash Extender Mascara. When I’m feeling fancy, I also use Clinique Pretty Easy Liquid Eyeliner.

I’m definitely still loving these products and have even gone back to some of my most loved from 2017. But right now I’ve stopped buying so many products and have been shopping my stash and discovering a couple of hidden gems along the way.

 

2018 –

Shampoo: Kérastase Specifique Bain Anti Pelliculaire
Heat Protectant: Kérastase Smoothing Taming Milk
Shower: L’Occitane Almond Shower Oil
Hand Cream: La Roche-Posay Lipikar Hand Repair Cream
Body Lotion: Mixa Anti-Dryness Body Lotion

Eye Makeup Remover: Clinique Take the Day Off
Makeup Remover: Emma Hardie Moringa Cleansing Balm
Toner: Pixi Glow Tonic
Essence: Kiehl’s Iris Extract
Mist: Pixi Hydrating Milky Mist
Eye Cream: Drunk Elephant C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream
Serum: La Roche-Posay HyaluB5
Moisturiser: La Roche-Posay Effaclar H
Lip Balm: Clinique Pep-Start Night Mask
Mask: Kiehl’s Calendula & Aloe Soothing Hydrating Masque / Garnier Glow Shot
SPF: Kiehl’s Ultra Light Daily Defense SPF 50

Primer: NARS Smooth & Protect Primer
Eyeshadow Primer: NARS Tinted Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base
Foundation: Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation
Powder: Bourjois Healthy Mix Powder / bareMinerals Invisible Light Translucent Powder Duo
Eyeshadow: Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette / Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Palette
Highlight: Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette Edit 3
Bronzer: Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette Edit 3
Blush: Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Blush
Mascara: No7 Lash Extender Mascara
Eyeliner: Clinique Pretty Easy Liquid Eyeliner Pen
Brow: Benefit Fool Proof Powder
Lip: YSL Volupte Tint-In Balm / Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector

Blemishes – Do you have them?

Blemishes, spots, marks, I think we all get them. To be honest, there is probably no escape. Whether it’s a teenage breakout, an allergic reaction, a hormonal imbalance or even food related reaction, something is bound to pop up.

As a teenager, I have to say that I wasn’t plagued with spots constantly. I would call it mild acne. Every so often I would get a breakout, it would then die down but the marks post breakout would linger, for what felt like months.

To treat my spots I used to use both Benzoyl Peroxide and Niacinamide. I would swap these every so often because they were quite harsh treatments. It would often sting when I applied them to my spots. What didn’t help was that I was obsessed with using The Body Shop Tea Tree Toner to combat my oily blemish prone skin. I used it daily but it was also a product that stung my skin. I made the mistake of using it daily which probably made my skin worse. It was far too stripping and caused my skin create even more oil, and so the vicious cycle of spots began again.

These days my skin is a lot clearer. I only ever get hormonal breakouts every so often. I have actually not used much product to treat them. I just use a flannel, run it under hot water, pop it on the spots to open up the pores, then do the same but with cold water. This has been pretty much the only thing I’ve used for years now, until this month haha!

I had a massive breakout this month. I only usually get them on my forehead and around my nose. This time it was on my chin and cheeks which never ever happens. I haven’t even worked out what caused it. The tea tree toner came back out of my cabinet, this time used sparingly, and thus became the hunt for something to get rid of my outbreak.

I stripped back my whole skincare routine to find out it if it was a new product causing the spots to appear. I stopped using AHA toners daily and that seemed to make the biggest difference. Also La Roche-Posay’s Effaclar Duo+ really helped calm my skin down and of course I used La Roche-Posay’s Serozinc as my toner twice daily so soothe my skin.

Neutrogena’s Visibly Clear Light Therapy Targeted Acne Spot Treatment pen has been out since December, but I hadn’t taken much notice of it seeing as I didn’t have a big issue with spots at the time. It had recently featured by a lot of Youtubers and bloggers that I follow, so I decided to buy one to see what all the hype was about. I found that it reduced the size of spots, or even help them disappear altogether. The UV and chemical free pen produces 2 coloured lights.The blue light targets acne-causing bacteria and the red light reduces inflammation. The pen is perfect for occasional breakouts and the mask is for more regular treatments for multiple breakouts.

The trick is to catch them at the right time, just as you can feel them coming up to the surface of your skin and to also use the pen three times a day. The only downside to this particular product is that it is a little time consuming, You are required to hold the pen to each spot for 2 minutes. In the mornings, sometimes I just don’t have the time to treat a few spots.

For when I don’t have time to use the pen I either use The Ordinary Salicylic Acid 2% Solution or the Kiehl’s Breakout Control Targeted Blemish Spot Treatment to dry out and reduce the appearance of the blemishes.

I’ve actually had trouble with finding products that help with marks post breakout. Introducing AHAs and BHAs back into my skincare routine has helped, my favourite at the moment being VIchy’s Idelia Peeling Care. It is very important that you remember to use sun protection when using any acid based products and retinols. They can increase your skin’s sensitivity to the sun. I usually use either the Keihl’s Ultra Light Daily UV Defense or any of the La Roche-Posay Anthelios range.

I also picked up the Kiehl’s Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solution after watching reviews of the product and it actually works wonders on any marks. I’ve been using it for a week and I can definitely notice a reduction in dark marks on my skin. When my skin is spot free I also sometimes use a low concentration retinol to help improve the appearance of dark spots and as a preventative anti-ageing measure. I use The Ordinary Retinol 0.2% in Squalane.

My skin has been a lot clearer and brighter now that I have found the perfect combination of products to deal with those pesky blemishes. What do you use when you get a breakout?

 

March Product Empties 2018

Here we are again. It is so satisfying finishing a product. My only problem is that I’ve got so many products on the go at the same time, so it honestly takes forever to actually finish anything.

I’ve found a new favourite brand of cotton pads. It sounds so silly, but it’s true! Boots Double Faced are great, but Glossier Rounds are brilliant. I like them because they are firmer and you can use both sides without them changing shape and falling apart.

I managed to finish 3 hair products this time round. That almost never happens. This winter I felt so determined to so finish some hair products. Each side of my bath is lined with all my products, I’m running out of space. Kerastase Anti-Dandruff Purifying Shampoo and Kerastase Balancing Shampoo are both great if like me you have an oily, sensitive and a dandruff prone scalp. The Anti-Dandruff Purifying Shampoo is great because it has little exfoliating beads which helps to really clean out your scalp. This is followed by the Herbal Essences Silk N’ Shine Conditioner which I run through the ends of my hair.

The one bath/shower product I’ve used up is the Rituals Yogi Flower Foaming Shower Gel. I think I got it free with a code that I found online. Just had to pay for postage. I loved the sweet almond scent so much that I’ve since gone into a Rituals store and bought the bath foam in the same scent.

The one makeup product that I’ve finished is the No7 Lash Impact Waterproof Mascara. This is my current favourite mascara. It’s clump free and separates lashes whilst giving great volume.

Deodorants. I used to be obsessed with Mitchum. The sprays and the gels as well. It was the only brand that I found that actually helped me stay fresh all day long. I still have loads in my cupboard but I’ve actually found a new favourite. It’s the Soft and Gentle 0% Aluminium Dry Deodorant. It doesn’t have any alcohol, aluminium or allergens in it. It’s so gentle on my skin and does not cause any discolouration on my underarms, which occurs when I use deodorants containing aluminium.

I have been painting my nails a lot more recently and what I have found really helpful is having the Boots Moisturising Nail Polish Removing Pads to fix my nails or to remove my polish super quick.

It’s no surprise that most of my empties are skincare products. I have the usual favourites. To start my routine after cleansing, I use my Pixi Glow Tonic as my chemical exfoliator. Then this is followed by my La Roche-Posay Serozinc and Pixi Hydrating Milky Mist.  Every night without fail I will use these mists. Then I use treatments or serums like the Clinique Fresh Pressed Daily Booster followed by my The Body Shop Aloe Eye Defence and then a moisturiser. In the morning I use the Clinique Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief and at night, the Lancome Energie De Vie Overnight Recovery Sleeping Mask. Both moisturisers have a water gel consistency which is great for hydrating my dry combination skin.

Hand creams have been a must over winter. Of course I’ve used a few of my favourite La Roche-Posay Lipikar Xerand Hand Repair Creams and a Aveeno Hand Cream too. A few minis have been used up too. I found a few sample sizes of the Clinique Take the Day Off with I love to use to remove my waterproof makeup and also the Clarins Instant Eye Make-Up Remover.

 

Aveeno Hand Cream
Boots Moisturising Nail Polish Removing Pads
Clinique Fresh Pressed Daily Booster with Pure Vitamin C
Clinique Take the Day Off
Clarins Instant Eye Make-Up Remover
Clinique Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief
Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye Concentrate Matrix
Herbal Essences Shine N’ Shine Conditioner
Hycosan Extra Eye Drops
Kerastase Specifique Balancing Shampoo
Kerastase Specifique Anti-dandruff Purifying Shampoo
La Roche-Posay Serozinc
La Roche-Posay Lipikar Xerand Hand Repair Cream
Lancome Energie De Vie Overnight Recovery Sleeping Mask
No7 Lash Impact Waterproof Mascara
Pixi Hydrating Milky Mist
Pixi Glow Tonic
Rituals Yogi Flower Foaming Shower Gel
Soft and Gentle 0% Aluminium Dry Deodorant in Active

Eye Shadow Primers – Do you use them?

Do you use them? I do! I will never go a day without an eyeshadow primer. There is absolutely no point going without. My lids get very oily throughout the day, so I always need to prime them.

For years and years since I started wearing makeup, i’ve been using Clinique Touch Base for Eyes in 10 Canvas. The colour blends in very well and my shadows would last a few hours, but I would still find a split through my shadow at the end of the day.

Annoyingly there aren’t many reviews online on the best eyeshadow primers, so I decided to look on the Boots website and pick a few to try.

A purse friendly primer is from Rimmel. The Exaggerate Undercover Shadow Primer comes with a doe foot applicator for ease of use. I would say that I normally avoid silicone based products because I really don’t like the texture of them, but on the eyes, it works! I brush a thin layer on each lid, pat it in and it does the job.

The YSL Couture Eye Primer reminds me of a concealer. It has quite a thick texture and needs a lot of work to blend it in. I actually prefer using it as a concealer instead of a primer. I use the colour 01 Fair.

The Clarins Instant Light Eye Perfecting Base comes in just one shade. I like the texture, its not too thick but the problem is that it’s too dark. If i had a bit of a tan, it would be perfect, but unfortunately London is currently more snowy than sunny right now. Haha!

I am so excited because I have actually found my new favourite primer. It’s the No7 Stay Perfect Eye Shadow Primer. It’s so smooth and honestly ensures that your eyeshadow remains crease free all day long. I love it. The shadow colour and vibrancy lasts all day long, as if you have just applied your make up. I also prefer it to Clinique Touch Base because the product doesn’t dry out. I generally replace Touch Base every few months. I’m not normally able to finish one in time before it dries.

I will definitely be using No7 Stay Perfect Eye Shadow Primer daily now. It is the only primer that truly lasts all day and remain crease free.

Glossier Solutions – Review

Solution – Exfoliating Skin Perfector

As soon as the email popped into my inbox ‘Meet Solution” I was hooked. Within a minute it was added to my basket and I was ready to order it.

I am always on the hunt for chemical exfoliators. I use Pixi Glow Tonic daily as the first step after cleansing. With 5% Glycolic Acid it improves skin texture and brightens. My skin does not get on very well with physical exfoliators. I don’t really like using beaded creams all over my face, it feels too stripping and harsh for my sensitive skin. However, I have to say I do prefer gel or balm based exfoliators like Clinique Pep-Start Cleanser or Oskia Micro Exfoliating Balm on any super dry areas like around my nose.

I ordered some cotton pads as well, simply to get free shipping on the order. Haha! I mean it was a pretty extravagant purchase for £4 and only 60 pads, but they are actually very good quality.

Solution is designed to be used daily. It contains a combination of alpha hydroxy acids, beta hydroxy acids and polyhydroxy acids.

Lactic Acid – AHA
Glycolic Acid – AHA
Salicylic Acid – BHA
Gluconolactone – PHA

AHAs are designed to remove the top layers of dead skin cells and promote firmness by increasing the thickness of deeper layers of skin. It is water soluble so it’s suitable for normal/dry skin as it helps to hydrate and reduce blemishes and dark spots. It is also important to use sun protection daily whilst using AHAs as it can make your skin extra sensitive to sunlight. BHAs are oil soluble and work to improve skin surface and is designed to clear out pores, so it’s perfect for oily blemish prone skin. It is also suitable for sensitive skin as it’s a gentle exfoliant and has skin calming properties. PHAs help to brighten and smooth skin by promoting cell turnover. It also has antioxidant properties to protect exposure to UV rays and helps to reduce flare ups in conditions such as rosacea and dermatitis.

First lets talk about packaging. It comes in a plastic tear bag which I think is a little unnecessary. A waste of plastic for a bottled product. I do like the pump dispenser bottle though. It comes in handy to dispense just enough product to sweep across your face.

I used Solution daily for one week to see if it had any affect on my skin. It helped to improve skin tone and the smoothness of my skin. I was pretty impressed with results after only using the product for one week. But there is a downside to Solution. It leaves a sticky residue on my skin which I can’t stand. Even after using moisture sprays on top, my skin still feels tacky. It also broke me out. I don’t normally get blemishes on my cheeks, but after using it for 3 days, blemishes started appearing, especially on dry patches.

I think I will continue using Solution, but only on more oily areas, such as my t-zone and hopefully I can continue to see the benefits of a three acid combination product on my skin.

Best of Beauty – 2017

I thought I would share with you my best of beauty picks from 2017. Some old favourites and some brand new discoveries that have now found a place in my everyday routine.

Lets start with makeup. The best primer that I wore almost every day is the Becca First Light Priming Filter. It gives a wonderful lit from within look and smooths everything over giving you the perfect base for your foundation. My two favourite foundations of 2017 are actually both from Lancome. First up is the Lancome Miracle Cushion Foundation in 01 Pure Porcelaine. It’s perfect for when you are short of time in the morning but still need to apply a quick base before you head out. It has a light to medium coverage and is very easy to build. I also loved using Lancome’s Teint Idole Ultra Wear in 010 Beige Porcelaine. This is a great long lasting foundation medium coverage foundation and will not budge all day.

Next up is eye makeup favourites. First is an eyeshadow palette from Dior. It’s the Eye Reviver Backstage Pros Palette. its perfect for creating a everyday nude look. These creamy shadows have great pigmentation and are so easy to blend. In 2017 I have discovered some products that have managed to beat my oily lids. First up is the Lancome Artliner eyeliner. It creates very precise lines with it’s soft foam tip, dries quickly and is also easy to remove. Artliner is the only eyeliner that I have found that once applied, it will not budge. I cannot wear any pencils or gels because they end up smeared across my lids seconds after being applied. I also have the same issue with mascara. In 2017 I have gone through several tubes of No7 Lash Impact Waterproof Mascara. I can wear this all day without it smudging. The clump free formula separates and defines lashes for maximum impact.

2017 hasn’t really been a blush kind of year for me, but I have been using lots of different bronzers and highlighters. My favourite was the Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow Face Sculpt & Highlight palette. The sculpt shade is the perfect mid toned brown and the highlight is very subtle. Put them together and it creates the most healthy looking glow.

Brow products are tricky to get right. Finding the perfect shade that compliments your face without looking like slugs on top of your eyes is hard. My favourite has been the Fleur De Force by Eyelure Brow Palette. It creates the most natural look with the two shades and the powder gives you control over where you want to define.

Next is skincare. My favourite make up remover has been the La Roche-Posay Micellar Water Gel. I love micellar waters, but the gel version is even better. It leaves the skin feeling clean and fresh. I usually follow this with Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser. The combination of eucalyptus and rosemary leaves your skin feeling refreshed and squeaky clean. If I am wearing a bit more make up, I will use Pixi + Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse. The solid cleansing oil will melt your makeup away. I love it. Then the cleansing cream, will remove anything that is left on your face.

My favourite serum has been the Kiehls Hydro-Plumping Re-Texturizing Serum Concentrate. I have been on the hunt for any product that will add moisture to my skin. This product does just that.  This is then followed by Lancome’s Energie De Vie Nuit Overnight Recovery Sleeping Mask. The gel texture smoothes and hydrates dull and tired looking skin.

The one fragrance that I constantly found myself going back to was Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet. It is both fruity sweet notes of orange with a touch of floral rose and peony.

These are just a few of my top beauty picks of 2017. I can’t wait to try some of the new exciting releases that are coming out soon in 2018.