Wednesday, 29 April 2015

April Empties || Products I've Used Up

I've used up the Boots Build Up Removal Shampoo which helps remove product build up and will continue to repurchase and reuse. I've finished up the Aussie 3MM Reconstructor which I use every Sunday to help give my hair the nourishment it needs after a week of styling. I've used up the Sanctuary Body Wash which is a nice hydrating shower gel that lathered up nicely and I will probably end up repurchasing soon. I've finished up the EOS Shave Cream in Pomegranate Raspberry which I loved as it helped give a close shave although I went through it too quickly. I've used up the L'Oreal Ever Riche Nourishing & Flowing Shampoo + Conditioner which I'm still sat on the fence about as although it left my hair clean and soft, I'm still a little unsure about them.

I've finished up a bottle of Femfresh which every female should be using to keep their ladyparts clean - enough said! I've used up the Sanctuary Gentle Polish Body Scrub which as the name suggests is a very gentle scrub which is nowhere near enough exfoliating as I like. I've finished up another Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish which I thoroughly enjoyed using and will always have a bottle of this in my stash. I've used up a can of La Roche Posay Serozinc which helped keep my skin clear and will forever have a can in my stash. I've finished up another Garnier Simply Essentials Soothing 2-in-1 Makeup Remover which I use round Liams' as it removes my makeup very quickly and is cheap as chips.

I've used up a Sanctuary Body Butter which helped keep my skin hydrated and made it feel soft - will most probably end up repurchasing. I've finished up another Pretty Perfect Twist & Out Instant Nail Varnish Remover which is the only nail varnish remover I use as it removes any nail varnish within seconds. I've used up the Lacura Aqua-Complete Moisturiser which helped keep my skin hydrated and plump without breaking the bank. I've finished up the Botanics Ultra Calm Skin Relief Serum which I used on a nightly basis to help soothe my skin and I've already repurchased it. I've used up the Collection Fast Stroke Eyeliner which is absolutely brilliant for the price! I've finished up the Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara which I loved at first but didn't enjoy it quite as much when it got a bit drier. I've used up the No7 Midnight Lash Macara which I thoroughly loved and will repurchase! I've finished up a MAC Eyebrow Pencil in Lingering which is the only eyebrow pencil I use and will forever repurchase. I didn't really finish up the Rimmel Scandal Eyes Kohl Pencil in Black as the end broke off but regardless, it's a brilliant black eyeliner which I will be repurchasing once I've used up a few more.

I've used up Lush Bunch Of Carrots which helped create a ton of bubbles and turned the water orange. I've used up a Lush Heart Throb Bubble Bar which again helped create a mountain of bubbles whilst turning the water a beautiful shade of red with glitter everywhere. I've used up the Montagne Jeunesse Black Seaweed Peel Off Masque which although it was very messy, it definitely did the trick! Lastly, I've finished up three packs of my beloved Wilko Maxi Oval Cotton Pads which are the only cotton wool pads that I will use.

Monday, 27 April 2015

April Birchbox Review

Whenever I come home and find this months Birchbox waiting for me, I get really excited. Especially when this months edition included not six, but seven beauty products?! (The joys of choosing which sample I wanted and discovering that the particular sample I wanted was already out of stock) Girl (..or boy), don't get even get my started!

Birchbox are celebrating the arrival of the fourth in line to the throne by putting their own favourite products on a pedestal with a delightful twist with the boxes - some are pink and some are blue and depending on whether the royal baby is a girl or boy, those with matching boxes will get the chance to win a huge colour co-ordinated beauty hamper. Now, onto the products..

The Laura Mercier Full Blown Volume Supreme Lash Building Mascara (£19.50) certainly wins the award for having the most longest name in the history of makeup, ever which hopefully lives up to its claims of dramatically lengthened, curled, sculpted, thicker lashes without any clumps which lasts all day long. The Laura Mercier Longwear Creme Eye Pencil in Violet (£18) makes a welcome change to the standard black and nude eye pencils that grace my waterline on a daily basis. It certainly will give the pop of colour needed to finish any intense eye look and will definitely last all day.

Oils are one of my weaknesses so the Percy & Reed Smoothed, Sealed & Sensational Volumising No Oil Oil (£14) is a much welcome addition to my arsenal of hair oils. Unlike the oils that I currently have in my stash that promise to hydrate even the most driest of hair, this actually is completely different in the sense that it will tame hair without weighing it down which I need, like now.

I'm not a fan of foaming face washes so the Bliss Fabulous Foaming Face Wash (£19.50) will most definitely be getting passed onto a friend although it does claim to be both a cleanser and exfoliator in one which leaves the skin soft and fresh with a blend of rosehip, chamomile and passion flower. So I may just end up keeping it for myself after all..

Granted the fact that I've never tried a Lola Barcelona Nail Varnish (£7.50) before but this particular shade Rambla; a beautiful pinky coral shade, is getting me excited for summer! Despite the fact that it looks ever so similar to Essie Cute As A Button albeit slightly darker, this will certainly be gracing both my fingers and toes over the next few months.

One thing that I hate about the sun shining is that I will suffer with heat rash and I'm currently itching my feet like no other so the Pommade Divine Nature's Remedy Balm (£19.80) is already being used all over and it's a life saviour! It's one of those multi purpose balms that you can use literally for everything and will do the trick so it's no wonder that it's causing quite the stir in the beauty industry!

I don't always trust health supplements that come in boxes especially those that claim to do a billion things so the Inner Me Beauty & The Green Coffee Bean (£10) will be getting put to the back of a drawer and forgotten about no doubt. Despite it claiming to give energy and mainting skin and hair, I highly doubt that it would work for me.

Saturday, 25 April 2015

Samples I've Used Up 022

I've used up six sample satchets of the Lancome Visionnaire Serum which is quite a lot to get through in one month although I do empty out a few of these at a time into a sample pot in order to use. This really does help to even out my skin texture and I thoroughly love using it! I've used up three satchets of Estee Lauder Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator which works similar to Lancome Visionnaire in the terms of evening skintone out except it's more of a illuminator which makes the skin appear more radiant than before.

I've finished up a generous sized sample of Laura Mercier Ambre Vanille Souffle Body Creme which smelt absolutely divine and helped keep my body hydrated. If this wasn't so expensive, I would definitely be buying this in full size but for now, it will remain on my wishlist.

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Sanctuary Body Butter

One thing that I love more than having a bath is actually pampering myself after a bath which often consists of a mixture of various oils and lotions to keep my skin and hair hydrated. As I like to use similar bath products, I've found myself reaching for the Sanctuary Body Butter which has been helping keeping my mitts hydrated for the past few weeks..

The Sanctuary Body Butter (£10) is a luxuriously rich body butter and intensive skin booster which is crammed with nourishing cocoa butter and creamy shea butter to help keep skin hydrated and nourished for longer.

I like to scoop out a generous sized amount for each body part before massaging it in, ensuring that I concentrate mainly on the drier areas of that particular body area. I find that no matter how little or how much I massage it in, it never truly seems to sink in instantly so I end up having to do the hurry-up-and-dry-body dance which I'm sure we've all done plenty of times. Once it's finally absorbed, my skin feels soft and hydrated to the touch with Sanctuarys' signature scent lingering on my skin for hours after applying. What I like the most about this body butter is not how soft it makes my skin feels or the scent but how a little goes a long way so I can easily see one tub lasting a good while or so.

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

L'Oreal Ever Riche Nourishing Intense Mask

As my ombre is now a lot more blonder, I'm finding myself reaching for products that promise to nourish and hydrate my locks without compromising on the softness. Seeing as I'm currently using the L'Oreal Ever Riche Nourishing & Flowing Shampoo + Conditioner, it seems only fair that I use the matching hair mask for those days when my hair needs that extra shot of hydration.

The L'Oreal Ever Riche Nourishing Intense Mask (£6.99) has been specially designed to respect hair fibre, give hair rich nourishment whilst protecting from dryness without waxes.

I like to scoop out quite a generous sized amount and put it all over my hair, concentrating mainly from the mid-lengths down as that is where I've done the most damage to my hair in terms of ombre-ing it. Once applied, I like to leave it in for as long as possible before washing it out to reveal instantly silky, nourished hair that is soft to the touch. Despite doing a lot of damage to my hair, it always looks so much healthier after I've used this and people always comment on my hair the day after I've used this. I will most definitely be repurchasing this as it truly is a miracle worker!

Sunday, 19 April 2015

L'Oreal Skin Perfection Velvety-Soft Toner

I've been trying to vary my skincare routine and use different products from both drugstore and highend in order to find my holy grail routine. Whilst this does consist of a lot of trial and error, I am actually enjoying finding out which products work for me and which ones don't. One of the products that I've been trialling for what feels like the longest time ever is the L'Oreal Skin Perfection Velvety-Soft Toner

The L'Oreal Skin Perfect Velvety-Soft Toner (£3.99) is a toner that is infused with softening actives that help tone the skin and remove impurities whilst soothing the skin making it suitable for even the most sensitive of skin without dryness or any discomfort.

Now I wouldn't say that I have sensitive skin as it's actually quite far from it however this toner and my skin do not go! Immediately after the first use, my skin felt dry and tight in places which resulted in piling on many hydrating serums and oils in order to get my skin back to where it was. This was a vicious, continuous circle which carried on for about a few weeks until I could not take it anymore. The reason being is that this was breaking me out horribly which I've only now just overcome completely. This was the only new product in my routine and I changed nothing else so I blame this entirely for my break outs. Bearing in mind, I started using this at the beginning of last year, I cannot bring myself to finish using it in fear that it will break me out again so I'm chucking it out after having it on my skincare shelf for what feels like forever. Now despite this not working at all for me, this could work wonders for you so it's definitely worth using it with an open mind.

Friday, 17 April 2015

Facemask Friday 002

I'm a huge fan of anything that promises radiant looking skin whether it be makeup or skincare, you name it and I'll try it! The REN Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask is infamous across the blogging world as being the facemask to give you more radiant looking skin. I've actually tried this before and I thoroughly loved it but after receiving another sample of it, I couldn't resist popping up a quick review on it.

The REN Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask (£32) is a potent bio active peel mask designed to renew the complexion, reduce the appearance of fine lines and dramatically improve skin tone. Unlike other face masks that I've used in the past, this has the exact same consistency to marmalade in texture and colour so it does feel a little weird at first applying it.

I like to apply a generous amount of my face ensuring that I cover everywhere except for around my eyes for obvious reasons and leave it on for a little under ten minutes or so. Once on the skin, it can start to tingle in areas which can feel a little alarming but it just means that the mask is doing its magic. After ten minutes or so, I like to wash it off with a damp muslin cloth which reveals instantly brighter, smoother looking skin. I prefer using this once a week which helps keep my skin smoother and brighter for longer and also helps with evening out my skintone. I doubt I would ever purchase this in full size due to it being quite expensive but for the time being, I'm happy having a deluxe sized sample in my stash again.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Lush Brightside Bubble Bar

At this current moment of time, I've ran out of bubble bath and instead of running out and buying a few more bottles, I've started to use up my large amount of Lush products which I seem to buy but never get around to using. At the moment, I'm currently using their Brightside Bubble Bar which I thought I would share my thoughts on.

The Lush Brightside Bubble Bar (£4.75) is a brightly coloured bar which you break off pieces to create beautifully scented bubble baths. It contains various essential oils including sicilian mandarin, bergamot and tangerine which helps you look on the bright side of life - literally! 

What I love the most about the Brightside Bubble Bar is not how strongly it smells of citrus or how brightly coloured the bar is but how it turns the bath water into a beautifully shade of deep orange. Whilst having orange water may not be up everyones street, it leaves the skin feeling incredibly soft and the scent lingers around for hours afterwards. I've seen many people get up to five baths from one bar but I've personally managed to get seven which definitely has to be some sort of record! If you're after something to uplift your spirits or just fancy a change from regular bubble baths then I definitely recommend you try this out!

Monday, 13 April 2015

La Roche Posay Serozinc

I do love a good talked about product, especially one that has had the blogging world in a fit since it was finally released in the UK market back in January. The product in question is of course La Roche Posay Serozinc which has been doing the rounds in the beauty world ever since Caroline Hirons first mentioned it. The minute it became available to buy, I instantly bought five cans and haven't looked back since.

La Roche Posay Serozinc (£8.50) is a zinc sulphate solution that aims to cleanse and soothe the skin which is targeted mainly towards oily, blemish-prone skin although anybody could use it. You can spray it directly on your face or use a cotton pad as the middle man - which regardless of which ever way you use it, it will still do the trick. You can either use it as a quick refreshing spray during the middle of the day or to set makeup albeit it won't necessarily keep your makeup in place for longer.

My preferred method of using this is spraying it directly onto my face - after using an exfoliating toner whether it be morning and/or night - before going in with a cotton pad to mop up the excess. I started using it the minute my package arrived back in January when my skin wasn't particularly plagued by blemishes nor was it clear and since using it twice a day, my skin has never looked better. I wouldn't necessarily say that this is a must have product but rather it is a product to have in your stash for those just in case times. Many people have said that this has cleared up their skin almost instantly overnight which I must say is utter bollocks - it will clear up your skin just not in that quick of a time frame. The quickest that this helped the most horrible of breakouts has been four-ish days which still is rather impressive. Overall, I would definitely say that this is worth the hype and I'm glad that us Brits can get our mitts on it a lot easier now especially when it's now available in the aisles of Boots..

Saturday, 11 April 2015

L'Oreal Ever Riche Nourishing & Flowing Shampoo + Conditioner

When it comes to buying a new shampoo and conditioner, I take a few things into consideration such as if it's on a good offer, what it claims to do and if they have the duo in stock. One said duo that I've had on my list to try for absolutely ages is the L'Oreal Ever Riche range of which I've been trying the Nourishing & Flowing duo.

The L'Oreal Ever Riche Nourishing & Flowing Shampoo + Conditioner (£5.99 each) have been specially designed for even most over processed of hair. The Nourishing & Flowing range combines a nourishing care system with no sulphates to leave the hour feeling nourished, protected and flowing whilst feeling silky soft to the touch.

Unlike most shampoos and conditioners, the L'Oreal Ever Riche Nourishing & Flowing duo come packaged in squeezy tubes which although are convienant for getting out the very last drop, it means that you can run the risk of squeezing too much out which I've definitely done quite a few times. As I've been using this duo for the past few weeks or so, I've noticed that whilst they don't lather up like traditional duo, they leave the hair feeling incredibly soft and nourished. As I like to quite literally slather it on and leave it in for as long as possible, it doesn't weigh my hair down and I get the same results as if I had left it in for a matter of minutes. In terms of whether or not I prefer sulphate free shampoo and conditioners, I'm still sat on the fence as I do like that they won't harm my hair quite as much as those containing sulphates just I prefer to feel lots of lather in my hair, as it reassures me that my hair will be clean and soft.

Thursday, 9 April 2015

My Favourite No7 Mascaras

I am a big mascara junkie and I love nothing more than trying out mascaras although I try to stick to having two open at any one time. Whenever I'm in the market for a new mascara, I look no further than No7 purely because I prefer their formulas over the likes of L'Oreal and Rimmel and they're forever handing out their infamous money off vouchers which make them even cheaper. As I've tried out almost every mascara that they do, I thought I would share my favourite mascaras from No7.

The No7 Midnight Lash Mascara (£13.50) is one of their more recent launches having only come out leading up to Christmas last year. It is one of their blackest mascaras which not only coats every lash but contains black pearl and sapphire to really dress the lashes. Unlike traditional bristle wands, this has a rather interesting shape with the wand being fatter in the middle and the bristles going in a diagonal shape. This particular mascara helps give lots of definition, length and volume whilst coating every lash. After several coats, you get beautifully long lashes which helps make the eyes appear larger which will be ideal if you have short lashes. As the formula is not waterproof, the slightest bit of moisture will smudge the lashes so ensure you stay well away from water or instead seal the lashes with a waterproof mascara.

I've already reviewed the No7 Stay Perfect Mascara (£12.95) but it is still one of my favourite mascaras to date and is one of No7 best selling mascaras! It has a plasic straight wand which can coat even the shortest of lashes transforming them completely into beautifully long, black lashes. This mascara is ideal for those wanting lots of volume and definition as it builds up the lashes within a few coats. Despite the formula not being waterproof, it does not budge at all! You can literally go running and still have perfect looking lashes which is a bold statement but is one that I'm sticking to as I've put it to the test. I personally prefer using this as a bottom lash mascara as it gently defines my bottom lashes whilst giving length.

The No7 Extreme Length Extend Mascara (£12.95) is the only mascara by No7 that I've used lots of samples of and is one mascara that I simply cannot live without! The wand is a traditional plastic wand which is slightly curved that allows you to coat every lash without smudging. Unlike other No7 mascaras, the formula is enriched with hollow shaped fibres that sticks to the lashes so you can easily build up the lashes to make them longer, more defined and just generally fanned out with intense volume. I personally prefer using this mascara in conjunction with other mascaras to really build up the length and truly define them and I find that using it that way, it sets my mascara so that it does not budge despite the formula not being waterproof.

My last favouite mascara is the No7 Lash Impact Mascara (£13.50) which is one of their more intense mascaras. This has a traditional bristle wand which helps get right into the base of the lashes and really build up the volume. Unlike other mascaras by No7, this particular one has a bold claim that it gives great volume in one coat and an amplified false lash effect in two coats without clumping which I will happily hold my hand up and say is false. It does give incredible volume and it can give an amplified false lash effect within quite a few coats - you have to really work with the mascara and build it up from the base to get the effect required. If it gave false lash effect lashes within two coats then the amount of time I spend applying mascara will be halfed - literally! Despite it's false bold claim, this is quite literally one of my most favourite mascaras by No7 as if I truly spend my time building up the length, I will achieve false lash effect lashes which last all day without clumps or flaking off. 

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Sanctuary Body Scrub

It feels as though I've tried every single Soap & Glory Body Scrub and although I do like quite a few of them, I'm wanting to get through my stash of beauty products before I repurchase any more. One said product is the Sanctuary Body Scrub of which I do have a few of them which is from buying Sanctuary gift sets at Christmas.

The Sanctuary Body Scrub (£5.50) contains natural pumice grains, soothing orange oil and rejuvenating patchouli which makes it one revitalising, gentle body scrub that you can use every single day as both a cleansing shower gel as well as a body scrub.

Unlike a really gritty body scrub in a tub, the Sanctuary offering comes packaged in a tube and is very gentle so I've found myself going through this at a fast rate as sadly a little doesn't go a long way. As I much prefer a more grittier body scrub, I've been applying twice as much and really scrubbing it in to get the same effect which although it does help with the chicken skin on my arms, it doesn't half hurt my arms! With that being said, I have found this to be the perfect scrub for when I'm fake tanning as it gently exfoliates the skin whilst not removing all the fake tan so whilst it may not be ideal for when I'm pale, it's brilliant for when I'm fake tanned.

Sunday, 5 April 2015

EOS Shave Cream in Pomegranate Raspberry

Since I've started blogging, I've noticed that my list of products that I would like to try keeps on getting longer which isn't helped by watching various YouTubers in the US showing off what they've recently bought in Sephora/Ulta/Target. When I was over in the US last year, I decided to pick up a few items on said list as it works out to be far cheaper and one of those items was a couple of the EOS Shave Creams.

The EOS Shave Cream in Pomegranate Raspberry (£10.50) comes packaged in a brightly coloured pump dispenser bottle with various indentations on the bottle to make it easier to hold in the shower. It's a rich, non-foaming formula which is packed with natural conditioning oils, shea butter and antioxidant vitamins E and C to provide 24 hours of ultra-soothing moisture.

As I shave my body two to three times a week, I'm finding that I'm going through this at an alarming rate especially when various areas require up to four pumps. With that being said, the formula itself is rather thick and does spread out easily especially when the skin is already damp. I wouldn't say that using this will definitely give you a closer shave because there are some areas which require going over twice however it definitely leaves your skin a lot softer and more moisturiser so you could quite easily opt out of using a moisturiser afterwards. I however am a firm believer of piling on the moisture so I will never skip that step as my skin can be extremely dry especially after a bath. Overall, I do think that this a brilliant buy however if I lived in the US, I wouldn't mind repurchasing it as it's so cheap but as it's quite expensive over here, I think I'll stick to my beloved Soap & Glory Clean On Me Shower Gel as it lasts a lot longer.

Friday, 3 April 2015

Facemask Friday 001

At the moment, I'm currently trying to reduce the amount of beauty products that I own before I rush out and buy any new ones which is a lot easier said than done especially when you have a large enough stash like I do. In order to do so, I thought I better start going through my stack of face masks that I bought last year as well as start a new series on the blog featuring all the face masks that I use.

The Montagne Jeunesse Black Seaweed Peel Off Masque (£1) is one of those peel off masks which you can run the risk of it either being too runny or never seems to dry. This particular one is extremely runny as you have to work quickly once opening it as it literally goes everywhere, and you have to ensure that you put not too thick of a layer so that it doesn't dry and not too thin of a layer that you miss areas. Unlike other face masks which are a attractive colour, this one is straight up black which doesn't really appeal to me.

It dries within five minutes or so after applying but if left on for the recommended 20 minutes, the results are even greater. It peels off quite easily and in large enough pieces so that you're not spending forever getting off every little last piece. I find that I did need to cleanse my skin afterwards as it made my skin feel a bit meh but it certainly did feel a lot smoother and softer afterwards!

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

March Favourites

March has been one of those months where I've truly felt content despite all the drama at work and the constant changing of the weather. I've spent the month truly embracing spring and as such my favourites reflect that - hydrated skin with a lot of bronzey goodness!

Regardless of how much I declare my love for Hydraluron, the Lacura Aqua-Complete Multi Intensive Serum will be the one that stole my heart - it's watery goodness quenches my skins thirst and makes my moisturiser sink in that little but further. Combine the two together and you've got yourself a very hydrating, moistursing sinking duo! I've secretly been having an affair on my oils with the Nuxe Nuxellence Detox which has completely transformed my skin. I liken it to the Lancome Visionnaire albeit in a more nourishing, thicker consistency which actually shows results the very next morning! Despite taking the oathe of "I must test this for six weeks to see if my skin agrees with it before repurchasing" that us beauty bloggers were sworn to, I've already bought the full size after Escentual were having such a good deal on it.

I've been embracing the bronze goddess look for the best part of March so I've been swirling my brushes in NARS Laguna and applying generously all over to achieve a healthy bronzed look. I will admit and say that this still does break me out although not quite as much as before *touch wood* so I can easily wear it for a week straight before slathering myself in all my blemish busting potions. In conjunction with said bronzer, I've been dusting the tops of my cheeks with the No7 Radiant Spheres Highlighter which sadly you can no longer get your mitts on. It's the perfect golden, glittery highlighter that instantly finishes any look which is down to it's mixture of three different shades. I like to sweep this a few times on the tops of my cheeks to get an intense highlighted finish which goes ever so well with my bronzed, chisled cheeks.

Thoroughout March, I've been playing about with eyeshadow and I've now found myself religiously reaching for the No7 Mini Eye Palette which again was limited edition and can no longer be bought. My two favourite shades from the palette is the Mink shade (First row, second shade) and the Brown shade (Bottom row, first shade) which when applied together, creates the most subtle smokey eye look which compliments my eyes nicely. Lastly, I've been applying the No7 Lash Impact Mascara daily which gives intense length and volume whilst defining the lashes to create the appearance of false lashes. I like to really spend my time whilst applying this as I find that the longer I take to ensure that every lash is coated, the better the effect will be.