Thursday, 30 January 2014

January Beauty Favourites!

Since we will finally be moving house at the start of February, for most of this month a lot of my beauty products have been packed away in boxes. However some of the things I didn't pack away I have really been loving this month. I also made a few purchases at the end of the month which you will no doubt see in next months favourites. 
Starting with makeup, i've been trying out a few new base product recently. A stand out favourite has been the Maybelline Dream Pure BB Cream for Oily Skin. This BB Cream has good coverage whilst feeling natural and light on the skin. It covers redness well and doesn't cling to dry patches. The wear time is great too, a great drugstore find. For lips i've gone back to the Revlon Lip Butter in Lollipop, a lovely bright fuschia shade with a blue undertone, great for brightening up a simple makeup look. 
For eyes i've pretty much worn the Urban Decay Nake Basics Palette everyday this month. I put off buying this thinking I didn't need it, but it is the perfect everyday neutrals eye palette, it's so compact making it perfect for travel. I've been trying out a new mascara in the L'oreal Mega Volume Miss Manga Mascara, this adds great volume and lots of length giving a great fake lash look. It can get clumpy if you're not careful but with the right application it looks lovely. I've fallen in love with a new brow pencil, the L'oreal Super Liner Brow Artist in Blonde, you can get such a precise brow with this and the colour is the perfect match for my freshly highlighted blonde hair. 
Onto skincare, a new release in the Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water (review), this closest thing i've found to Bioderma from the drugstore. It's very gentle yet removes makeup effectively without irritating the skin. My skin has been a bit spotty this month so i've been reaching for an old favourite, the Origins Clear Improvement Mask, whenever my skin is acting up I use this and it cleans out my pores and help get rid of any blemishes. I've been using a new day cream, the Nivea Oil Free Moisturising Day Cream, this stuff is really cheap but does the job, It adds just the right amount of hydration whilst helping to keep the oils at bay. 
As I mentioned above I had my hair cut and highlighted again this month. Things were looking a touch too brassy for my liking so I dug out the Pro:Voke Touch Of Sliver Twice A Week Brightening Shampoo, this is my favourite purple shampoo because it is cheap and really does get rid of those brassy tones. To add some texture and volume to my hair i've been using the Vo5 Plump It Up Dry Backcomb Spray, this gives the effect of backcombing without the damage. Sprayed in the roots it really does add some volume and fullness to my hair. 

So those are this months beauty favourites, a good mix of new and old products. What have been some of your favourite products this month?

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water - Reviewed!

I'm very happy to see that more drugstore brands are adding to the micellar water game. As I big lover of Bioderma I feel the need to try them all and see if any can beat my holy grail. I thought the L'oreal version was okay, I hated the B Pure offering so I was very happy to see Garnier's version as I am already a fan of their skincare, especially their toners. 
Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water
Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water
The packaging is fairly simple, you get a big 400ml bottle which is very good for the price. It claims to be suitable for sensitive skin and remove makeup, cleanse, soothe without rinsing. For face, eyes and lips. There is no fragrance to the product and it hasn't irritated my skin in anyway, it feels very gentle so I would agree that it is good for sensitive skin. It doesn't make your eyes sore after use which is a big added bonus. 
Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water
At first I found it took a little longer to remove my makeup than Bioderma but after a few uses i've gotten used to it and find it removes face makeup very well. It isn't amazing on heavy eye makeup, I tend to use a different eye makeup remover. If i'm not wearing a lot of eye makeup it removes it very well. It doesn't leave any sort of residue on the skin. I tend to follow up with a proper cleanser afterwards, I personally wouldn't use this as my only evening cleanse but I think you could get away with it.The bottle is easy to dispense the product, although I would say when it is full be careful to not squeeze the bottle.

So is it better than Bioderma? I think it is definitely close, it is the best drugstore equivalent I have found and the fact it is easy to get hold of and you get a lot of product for your money I would consider repurchasing it.

Have you tried this? What is your favourite micellar water?

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Update - Week In Pictures #5

I thought I would do a chatty update post on what's been going on recently as well as sharing a few pictures, songs i'm loving and products i'm testing out. 
Food/Drink - I've been back into the healthy eating this month after too much chocolate being consumed over Christmas. I've been making my green smoothies (recipe here!) with my new blender and packing them full of spinach, very tasting and good for you. I've also gone back to Uni so i've been putting these Trek Protein Flapjack bars in my bag to keep me going. Again these taste good and are wheat and gluten free as well as not being full of rubbish. 
Fashion and Hair - I've been loving wearing black and white recently, especially stripes. To make the outfit not look as monochrome i've been adding my favourite checked shirt which I got a while back. I also had my hair cut and highlighted again, i've gone back to having it shoulder length which is so much easier to style. My hair has always been very fine, which is another reason why I prefer it shorter; when I saw the new L'oreal Elvive Fibrology Shampoo, Conditioner and Thickness Booster. The range is currently 3 for £10 in Boots which I think is a pretty good deal. Expect a review of these soon!
Skincare - I've been doing a bit of a mixing my face masks together to make super masks! My favourite combination is the Una Brennan Super Facialist Clay Mask mixed with the Origins Clear Improvements Mask, these too together to help with oil control and blemishes. 
Makeup/Beauty Purchases - There's been lots of new releases recently, my favourite has to be the Revlon Lacquer and Matte Balms, I picked up three the other day since Revlon is currently on 3 for 2, I can see these being a firm favourite. I also treated myself to the Dior Nude Skin BB Cream, i've heard great things about this so I can't wait to try it. I've been preffering more simple, natural makeup recently. I got a £5 off Space NK discount code so I decided to try the NARS Tinted Moisturiser as well! I've bought a few base products recently so a clear out may have to happen to make room for them! 
Moving - We have finally been given a moving date for the 6th of February! It feels like we've been waiting to move house for ages but things have finally started to come together. We're currently surrounded by boxes, included most of my makeup and beauty products being packed away ready for the move. I'm looking forward to doing to decorating, homeware and DIY posts once we move. I may go a bit MIA when we do move, hopefully we won't be without internet for too many days. 
TV Shows - The main show i've been watching recently is Sons Of Anarchy, I put off watching it thinking I wouldn't like a show about a biker gang but there is actual much more to it than that, i've been obsessed with it because it is such a great, well written and acted show. Girls is back for season 3 which i've been loving as well as Community. I've also started watching season 3 of Luther, why they stopped making this show I will never know, it is so good and Idris Elba is great in it!
Music - One of my favourite bands Warpaint came out with their new album this week and oh my is it good. These girls are so talented and I can't wait to see them live next month. I would definitely recommend giving it a listen. 

So that's what i've been up to lately, lots of things will be happening it the next few weeks, i'm going to try slow down on the beauty shopping since I will be spending my money and trips to Ikea! If you would like some house themed post let me know. What shows and music have you been watching/listening to recently? What new beauty releases are you going to be checking out?

Thursday, 23 January 2014

January Empties!

I'm doing this months empties a few days early because we're hopefully moving house next week, also i've managed to use up a good amount of products and the box I store my empties in was overflowing so didn't want to miss this month out. 
Starting with haircare, i've finished another can of the Batiste Monochrome Dry Shampoo, I love this stuff, especially the packaging and the scent, I will repurchase it when it's next on offer. I also finished the Charles Worthington Protect Heat Defense Spray, I don't use heat on my hair a lot but I did find this did the job when I would. I'm not sure if they still do this but I would consider repurchasing it. 
Onto shower and bath products, first up is the Nivea In Shower Body Moisturiser, I love this stuff, it has the classic Nivea scent and really does moisturise the skin so you can get dressed straight away after a shower. I've already repurchased this. I finished the Soap & Glory Scrub 'Em and Leave 'Em Body Buff, this was okay, it wasn't the scrubbiest of scrub so I don't think I will be repurchasing. Another Soap & Glory product, the Foam Call Body Wash, I love the scent of this and it's a really moisturising shower gel, I would repurchase this. I finished The Body Shop Honeymania Bubble Bath Melt, this had a lovely honey and floral scent to it and was a thick gel so lasted a long time. I would purchase this again. Another The Body Shop product, the Peppermint Smoothing Pumice Foot Scrub, this has a lovely minty scent and really does make your feet feel smooth. I will be purchasing this again near to Summer time for sure.
Onto body products I finished the Nivea Stress Protect Anti-Perspirant, i'm pretty fussy with deodorants but I did like this one, it did the job without irritating my skin. I would purchase it again. I finished two of The Body Shop Body Butters in Cranberry Joy and Vanilla Bliss, both of these have lovely festive scents and are super moisturising to the skin. I will be picking them up next Christmas time. Finally I finished the Next Love Glamour perfume, this has a lovely almost spicey scent to it, lasts a long time and is cheap. I would purchase this again.
Onto skincare I used up two Montagne Jeunesse Sheet Mask in Dead Sea Face Spa and Tea Tree Face Spa, both of these felt really refreshing and cooling to this skin. I would purchase these again because they're fun to use and really cheap. I finished a Garnier Fresh Essentials Refreshing Toner, I love this toner because it's really basic but does the job without irritating the skin. I will be repurchasing this again. I finished what I think is my third tube of Hydraluron, i'm a big fan of this because it is a saver to my dehydrated skin. I'm already onto my next tube. Finally I finished the Caudalie Lip Conditioner, I got this in a set and was surprised how much I liked it, it is moisturising and feels lovely on the lips, perfect for wearing underneath a drying lipstick. I would consider purchasing this again. 

So that's this months empties, a perk of having to pack all your belongings away is that you get even more of an urge to finish products. Have you used up any of your favourite products this month?

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Origins Zero Oil Deep Pore Cleanser - Reviewed!

I've been using this cleanser for a while and only just realised I hadn't put up a review of it. I'm a big fan of Origins skincare products, I did a Brand Focus on them here. I've been using it as the second step of my evening cleansing routine and it has become a firm favourite. 
Origins Zero Oil Deep Pore Cleanser
Origins Zero Oil Deep Pore Cleanser
The cleanser is designed for blemished/oily skin, as the name would suggest. I contains saw palmetto and mint which gives it a lovely scent and feels refreshing on the skin. It also contains salicylic acid which is known to help unclog pores and help with blemishes. It also contains aloe leaf and glycerin which helps to sooth the skin. 
Origins Zero Oil Deep Pore Cleanser
Cleanser designed for oily skin can often be drying on my skin, I was happy to see that this one isn't at all. It manages to leave the skin feel cleansed and clean without being stripped from moisture. 
Origins Zero Oil Deep Pore Cleanser
Applied to damp skin it turns a milky colour which helps to make sure that it is being really worked into the skin. It definitely seems to help reduce oil control and help to get blemishes to go quickly. I think this would be especially good in Summer when my skin is at it's most oily although saying that it has been working well for me in the colder months as well. If you have oily or blemish prone skin I would definitely recommend giving this a go if you are on the hunt for a new cleanser.

Have you tried this cleanser? What is your favourite cleanser for oily, or blemish prone skin?

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Recent Drugstore Beauty Purchases

After having a few months where I didn't really make any beauty purchases I decided to have a shopping trip and see if anything caught my fancy. Of course a good few things did so I thought I would share with you what I picked up. 

I finally tracked down the Maybelline Color Show Brocades Knitted Gold polish (NOTD here) which is such a lovely gold and pink glitter. I also spotted the Maybelline Color Show Stree Artist Top Coat in White Splatter which is another amazing top coat which I think will look amazing over a lot of polishes.  
I've been working my through the crazy amount of mascara's I had in my stash (there's a post on that here). I've finished a good few so when I saw the new L'oreal Miss Manga Mega Volume Mascara, as you can see I haven't opened this but i'm looking forward to giving it a go.
As a big fan of Hydraluron, i'm currently on my third tube, I knew I had to try to new Moisture Boosting Mask, this contains 4 sheet mask which are pretty much covered in Hydraluron. I'm excited to given these a go, they're are little pricey but will hopefully be worth it. 
I've never tried any Sanctuary skincare products so I thought these sachets would be a good place to start. The one on the left is a 5 Minute Thermal Detox Mask and the other is a Brightening Facial Moisture Boosting Mask. Both of these come in a full size tube which I might be tempted to pick up if I get along with these.
I picked up some Montagne Jeunesse face masks from Body Care, each were 89p and a great quick fix to problem skin. I'm currently getting ready to move house so I thought these would be perfect since i've packed away a good amount of my other masks. A few of them are sheet masks which is something that is new to me so i'm excited to see if they work well. 
Garnier do some great toners so I decided to give the Simply Essential Soothing Vitamin-Enriched Toner, I normally go for the Refreshing Toner which comes in a green bottle but I thought I would try this one as it is alcohol, perfume and colourant free. Something i'm very excited to try is the Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water, i'm a big lover of Bioderma so at £4.99 a bottle i'm hoping this Garnier offering is just as good as it is easier to get hold of. 
Another new release is the Maybelline Super Stay Better Skin Foundation, this sounds right up my street as it claims to help problem skin, has a SPF 20 and when I swatched it seemed to be light on the skin but with a good coverage. Maybelline currently have a buy one get one half price offer so I decided to picked up the Dream Pure BB Cream for Oily Skin, I haven't tried a drugstore BB Cream in a while so i'm hoping this one is good since i've heard positive things about it. Finally I picked up the MUA Undress Your Skin Foundation, this was on offer in Superdrug for £3 and again I had heard good things about it so I thought I would give it a go. Hopefully it will be as good as people have said it is.

So those are my recent beauty purchases, i'm excited to have some new products to try out. Have you made any beauty purchases recently? What new releases are you excited for?

Thursday, 16 January 2014

New In: Skincare

I've been trying to simplify my skincare routine and not add too many new products into the mix. I think it's helped to keep my skin balanced. I have added three new products recently and they've fitted in nicely, best of all two of them are great products which won't be break the bank.
Nivea Daily Essentials Oil Free Moisturising Day Cream for Oily/Combination Skin
I've been on the hunt for an affordable, light day cream. I came across the Nivea Daily Essentials Oil Free Moisturising Day Cream for Oily/Combination Skin recently as it was on offer in Boots. It's a great light basic cream which doesn't feel heavy on my combination skin yet gives a good amount of moisture to my dehydrated Winter skin. It also sits nicely under makeup. I great affordable find which I can see becoming a favourite in my skincare routine.
L'oreal Absolute Make-up Remover Eye & Lip
I started using a mascara which was proving difficult to remove so I decided to give the L'oreal Absolute Make-up Remover Eye & Lip a go. This bi-phase make-up remover is a truely great product. It quickly removes eye makeup without irritating the eyes or leaving a residue on the skin. I always double cleanse but in a rush you could definitely get away with just using this alone to remove your eye makeup.
Pai Rosehip Bio Regenerate Oil
Face oils are fast becoming one of my favourite parts of my skincare routine. I've been using the Pai Rosehip Bio Regenerate Oil recently which has been a life saver to my Winter skin. It makes the skin feel hydrated and soft without clogging the pores. It also seems to help sooth blemishes and get rid of any dry patches. It seems to be helping even out my skintone as well. It's not the cheapest oil but you only need a small amount so this bottle will last a decent amount of time.

So those are my most recent skincare additions. Have you added any new products to your skincare routine recently?

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

NOTD Maybelline Color Show Brocades in Knitted Gold

I'm a big fan of glitter nails and when I first saw swatches of this new offering from the Maybelline Color Show Brocades collection I knew I would have to pick it up. As always though it was out of stock for weeks, I finally got my hands on a bottle and it is definitely a thing of beauty. 

Maybelline Color Show Brocades in Knitted GoldMaybelline Color Show Brocades in Knitted Gold
I decided that it would look best paired with a nude or pale polish underneath. I went for my trusty Essie Fiji, a lovely pale, almost white pink shade. I applied two coats of Fiji then top it with two thin coats of the Knitted Gold polish. I find with glitter it is best to apply a few thin coats, however with this one you could get away with one coat. 
Maybelline Color Show Brocades in Knitted Gold
The shade Knitted Gold is so unique which is why I think it has been so popular. It has a mix of pink and gold chunky glitter but as well as that a metallic duo-chrome fine gold glitter which means it looks different in certain lightening. There should be a warning that when wearing this you won't be able to stop looking at your nails! The wear time is good, i've been wearing it for a few days and there are no chips. A good top coat applied on top gives a glossy finish and adds to the already good wear time. 

Maybelline Color Show Brocades retail for £3.99.

Have you tried this polish? I definitely think it is a great drugstore find worth checking out. 

Thursday, 9 January 2014

This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Talk - Reviewed!

With the cold weather and days spent typing away at my dissertation getting to sleep can prove to be a tad difficult. I've heard great things about pillow sprays especially the This Works offering. I spotted this set whilst browsing Boots and since I had a good few points saved up I thought it was the perfect time to treat myself. 
This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Talk
This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Talk
The set contains a 75ml Pillow Spray and a 5ml roller ball of the Stress Less. Getting the two products together in the set works out cheaper than buying them separately. 
This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray
The pillow spray combines essential oils of lavender, vetivert and wild chamomile. I'm not the biggest fan of lavender scented products so we pleased to find out that the scent wasn't overpowering, the chamomile helps to create a pleasant and relaxing scent. You don't need a lot of product, I spritz 1-2 sprays onto my pillow and the scent really does help to relax you, I concentrate on my breathing I find I fall asleep within 5 minutes of my head touching the pillow. 
This Works Deep Sleep Stress Less
The Stress Less rollerball is a little bit more potent. The frankincense oil acts as antiseptic to relax you physically and mentally. It has a pleasant scent to it, again it contains lavender but isn't overpowering. Applied to the wrist and pressure points relaxes you naturally. Great if you're struggling to get to sleep, but I also think this would be great if you're a nervous flyer or before an exam. The handy size is perfect for using when traveling or for putting in your handbag.

I've really been enjoying using these products, they're both very effective and this set is a great deal of you're wanting to try a few products from the deep sleep range. 

This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Talk set retails for £22.00. (currently on sale!)
Have you tried anything from this range or any of brand of pillow spray?

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Battle Of The Drugstore Eyebrow Pencils

A downside of being blonde is when it comes to finding a good eyebrow pencil, especially from the drugstore is a pretty hard task. I've been testing out a good few over the past year or so and thought it was about time I shared which are bad, good and pretty near perfect. 

Starting off with the not so great. The NYC Kohl Brow/Eyeliner Pencil in Taupe. This one is so cheap and you get lots of product for your money, it's just under twice the size of a normal eyeliner. The shade is so bad, it is a touch warm but can be worked with. The problem is I find it hard to create a precise look with it. It's okay for adding colour to the brows but not so good at filling in gaps. The next is the Rimmel Eyebrow Pencil in Hazel. The shade of this is problem the worst out the bunch. It is also hard to get going sometimes, you almost have to warm it before use otherwise you are just scratching at your brows. This one is more precise but still not perfect.
Onto the good, first the MUA Luxe Power Brow in Fair. I love the idea of this one, it's a twist up brow pencil on one side, which means no sharpening, and a highlighter on the other end. The brow pencil is waxy but not too much so you can fill in any gaps easily, you can also even out the colour of your brows without them looking over done. The highlighter is nice too. The problem? The actually product falls out the packaging if you're not careful! The best way to avoid this is to wined the product fully down after use and take the cap off slowly, not ideal and a big flaw with the packaging. The other good one is the Maybelline Master Shape Brow Pencil in Dark Blonde, this one has a great colour, it's cool toned so looks natural on the brows. It's not to waxy or stiff, the tip isn't as precise as I would love which is it's only real downside. It comes with a brush on the other end which is also handy.

So onto the near perfect. The Collection Eyebrow Definer in Blonde has been my favourite for a while. It's cheap, retractable so no sharpening, which also means no wasted product. It's waxy so easy to apply, it's precise so you can fill in any gaps easily. The colour is also pretty good, it's cool toned and is still a favourite but I think I may just prefer this next one a little bit more. The L'oreal Super liner Brow Artist in Blonde. This one has a almost taupe feel to it, again cool toned so looks natural. It's very precise so you can achieve neat brows easily. It also has a wax on the other end which can be used to set the brows in place and a brush on the cap. It ticks all the boxes, not the cheapest but it definitely gives the best results. 

So that's it, I would definitely recommend the L'oreal and Collection ones. If you've tried any of these I would love to hear you opinions on them. What is your favourite eyebrow product?