Friday 29 January 2016

A NYX Round Up.

NYX Makeup Must Haves
Now that NYX is stocked on the Boots website and has been made more accessible in the UK I have been making several orders to stock up my stash. After trying out a selection of their range, I have rounded up the products that I think are worth a try. 

Starting with face products- and this is where NYX really stands out for me- the Dewy Finish Setting Spray has been a favourite of mine for many years as the lightweight formula helps to refresh and add a healthy glow to the skin. To make my makeup stay on all day I spritz lightly both before and after my base. This is an amazing budget alternative to makeup sprays. 

Out of everything in this line up, this 100% pure mineral silica loose powder is the one you need in your makeup bag; the Studio Finishing Powder looks natural, feels weightless and perfects the skin. As a sufferer of large pores, this offering has helped to camouflage and cover whilst smoothing and adding luminosity.  

Great budget highlighters can be hard to come by nowadays, so I am pleased to report that the Ritualistic Illuminator is a real gem. The white shimmer can be slightly off-putting, but when it's applied to the cheeks it sculpts, refines and adds radiance instantly. It's subtle enough for daytime wear, but it can be paired with the Nars Copacabana Illuminator if I'm after a more intense look. 

With an array of colours to choose from, a moisturising formula and a long wearing finish, it's no wonder that the NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams have had me smitten from the first wear. They're matte, creamy and fool-proof to wear; perfect for those who haven't dabbled in liquid lipsticks before. London; a brown-nude hue compliments and flatters my skin tone and is the start of my obsession with brown lipsticks. Milan- a mid tone pink- isn't a shade that I would usually go for, but it was the one that started off my NYX addiction so it's safe to say it's been used a fair few times. 

What NYX products would you recommend?

Tuesday 26 January 2016

The Multitasking Spray.

O&M Atonic Thickening Spray
When it comes to hair products, I often find less is more. So if I find a multitasker that actually works, I often become obsessed with it for months. The O&M Atonic Thickening Spritz is my latest discovery on trial and so far it's the best all-rounder I have ever tried. 

After using a clarifying shampoo my hair is often left looking dull and lacklustre, so anything that can add a healthy shine I'm all for. Once I've washed my hair, I use an Argan oil of choice to treat the ends, but adding the O&M offering as a final step before blow drying has really helped to lock in moisture and protect my hair from heat damage. Wheat proteins infuses lift into the hair, adding volume and texture to the hair in an instant. 

This is where this product gets even better;  not only does it work wonders on damp hair, but it can be used to strengthen, smooth and combat frizz whilst styling. Now I don't know about you, but after blow drying my hair tends to get a bit fluffy and out of control. Well this offering helps to condition and soften my locks without weighing it down or making it greasy; something that is hard to come by when it comes to hair products. 

If you're looking for bouncy, beach-wave curls then I would recommend using the Atonic Thickening Spritz paired with the Sachajuan Ocean Mist to create envious wave and texture. 

Have you tried any 0&M products?

Sunday 24 January 2016

Luxury Lipstick Brands To Try

Luxury Lipstick Brands To Try
Despite owning an excessive amount of lipsticks and staying loyal to brands like MAC, I can't help but venture to the more luxury lipstick stands whenever I feel like I need to treat myself, which -lets be honest- is quite regularly nowadays. With many lipsticks on the market it can be difficult to differentiate those that are worth the splurge, so today I have put together a handful of luxury lipstick brands that dominate my collection.

NARS | Over the past couple of months I have built up a collection of Nars Lip Pencils due to their impeccable formulations and their wide range of shades that cater for all occasions. Cruella; a blue toned red is one of- if not the- red shade for me as it's easy to wear on a daily basis, whilst Bahama has been my go-to nude this Winter due to the matte, long wearing finish that continues to flatter my skintone. If you're going to Space NK anytime soon then I would recommend swatching a few of these as I doubt you'll come out empty handed. 

CLINIQUE | If you're an avid reader of my blog then it'll come as no surprise that the Clinique Pop Lip Colours feature in this line up. With a hydrating formula and buildable finish, this is my go-to lip product whenever I am in doubt of what to wear on my lips. I particularly liked to wear the hue Melon Pop during the hotter months, but I have been reaching for Plum Pop more often than not recently. 

CHARLOTTE TILBURY | Aside from the rose gold packaging, Charlotte Tilbury stole my heart with their lipsticks due to their large array of shades and nourishing formulas. The Matte Revolution Lipsticks all aim to help you achieve fuller lips without compromising on hydration or comfort. I would recommend checking out Bond Girl, Glastonberry and Red Carpet Red if you're looking for a matte lipstick that is easy to apply. I have to admit they do wear off quicker than I would like, but all in all Charlotte Tilbury is a brand that once you buy one thing, you'll want it all. 

TOM FORD | It took me a long time to purchase any Tom Ford makeup as the large price tag put me off, but I soon began regretting I hadn't made an order sooner. The Lips and Boys collection is perfect for those who want to test out a luxury lipstick without splurging on a full sized version. Addison started of my obsession and now I'm convinced I need at least a handful of TF products in my makeup collection.

What are your favourite high end brands?

Wednesday 20 January 2016

5 Ways To De-Stress

After the stressful Christmas period, I make it my priority to spend January getting organised and using the time to unwind. Although I struggle to take time out for myself, I still make a conscious effort to enjoy those precious minutes relaxing and de-stressing. Today I have put together five ways you can get rid of those January blues and zone out for a few hours a week. 

HAVE A BATH | Taking an hour out to paint your nails, have a bath and light a few candles can be an instant pick me up and one that I love to do on a regular basis. After running a bath full of Laura Mercier Crème Brûlée bubbles, I like to pop on the radio and smother my face with a face mask of choice. 

WRITE A LIST | Getting myself organised really helps me to switch off and de-stress as it means I know what I've got to do with the day ahead. If I feel overwhelmed with my workload I write several lists and nothing feels more satisfying than things ticking off my list.

GO FOR A WALK | Walking is probably my favourite activity to do whenever I am stressed. I often take my camera out with me and snap away as it's a great way to disconnect with the internet for a few hours. It really helps to clear my mind and I actually find most of my inspiration comes from being out and about - Bonus!

GET CREATIVE | Cross stitch and colouring in really helps me to switch off after a stressful day. The repetitive motion is really rather therapeutic and it's a great activity to do before bed, especially if you're not a reader like myself. The Make Arcade Mini Cactus Cross Stitch and the Enchanted Forest Colouring Book are two of my essentials whenever I am trying to take a few hours away from the computer screen. 

HAVE A CLEAR OUT | Whether I have a rummage around my beauty stash or I have a full blown clear out of my wardrobe, I feel like discovering old favourites or throwing out the things you no longer use can really help to clear the mind. As someone who isn't very sentimental when it comes to possessions, I actually find this task easy and therefore I do it on a regular basis.    

How do you like to unwind? 

Monday 18 January 2016

A Lush Rose Round Up

Lush Rose Haul
Whether it's Summer or Winter, the one scent I can't stop loving is rose. The sweet, long lasting fragrance crops up throughout my skin and body care and no brand does rose better than Lush. 

Lush Ro's Argan Body Conditioner | Although my legs and arms are currently wrapped up in several layers of clothing, I still like to keep them supple and hydrated. As someone who is fairly lazy when it comes to moisturising, the Ro's Argan Body Conditioner is the perfect addition to your shower routine as it can be applied all over the body to tackle any dry areas and rinsed off straight away to reveal radiant, soft limbs. 

Lush Rosey Cheeks Face Mask | Packed full of balancing rose oil, cleansing kaolin and calming calamine, this fresh mask offering is perfect for toning and exfoliating the face. I apply a generous layer of this whenever my skin is in need of a pick me up as it mattifies and is great for prepping your skin before makeup application. 

Lush Rose Jam Bubbleroon | Although I'm instantly attracted to the allure of Lush's bath bombs, itis in fact the bubble bars that are the best value for money. When broken up into several pieces, the Rose Jam Bubbleroon can last a fair few baths. With a concoction of softening cocoa butter, refreshing lemon oil and balancing rose it's no wonder that this is one of my most used bath products.  

Lush Rose Queen Bath Bomb | I am currently still mourning the loss of the Rose Jam Shower Gel, an exclusive Christmas product that fragrances the skin beautifully and leaves the skin feeling nourished. As a substitute I have been reaching for the Rose Queen bath bomb; an uplifting offering that quenches dry skin and leaves it smelling of fresh flowers. I often buy a couple for my little cousin, so it would be rude not to pop a couple of them in the basket for myself. 

What Lush products do you recommend? 

Friday 15 January 2016

An Easy Green Smoothie

After overindulging on sausage rolls over the festive period, my body is in serious need of a detox. Green smoothies are an excellent way of incorporating a few new flavours and veggies into your every day smoothies, but they can be quite daunting if you haven't tried making your own before. After playing around with several different recipes, I have made up my own easy green smoothie which everyone can make that is perfect for those who haven't tried one before. 

I N G R E D I E N T S (1 Smoothie)

A handful of baby spinach leaves
A handful of de-stemmed kale
1 Banana
100g Mango
100g Pineapple

M E T H O D 

1. Start by chopping up pineapple and mango into cubes. I prefer using frozen mango, but you can use ice as an substitute. I then chop the whole of my banana up.  

2.  Add in the spinach, kale, pineapple, mango and banana. Blend until smooth. You can add water if necessary.

3. Pour into a glass of your choice and enjoy! 

Is this a green smoothie recipe you'd like to try? 

Wednesday 13 January 2016

What's In My Makeup Bag | Travel Edition

What's In My Makeup Bag
Over the next couple of weeks I'm going to be travelling a lot and I'm bound to be applying a lot of my makeup on the go. I have compiled a list of a handful of products which can be applied with ease using either my hands or minimal makeup brushes; perfect for variety of occasions. 

For my base and concealer I have opted for lightweight, nourishing options in the form of the Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser and the Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer. This Laura Mercier offering just the right amount of light coverage, whilst allowing me to build it up if needs be. I like to pair this with a concealer in order to brighten my complexion and camouflage any blemishes. 

When I'm aiming to pack lightly I try and stick to packing palettes rather than individual products to save on space. The Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow is the perfect duo for creating sculpted, chiselled cheekbones for everyday wear, but I like to pack an extra highlighter just in case my skin is in need of an extra boost of glow. The Becca Champagne Pop highlighter not only adds emphasis on my contour, but it can be applied effortlessly in one sweep. The blusher that works in sync with this highlighter is the H&M Pure Radiance Blush in Golden Peach as it adds a pop of colour and subtle sheen to the skin. 

For my eyes I couldn't just stick to one offering so instead I chose two palettes. Both the Nars Dead Of Summer Dual Intensity Palette and Nars Eyeshadow Duo in Kalahari are suitable for day and night time wear. All the hues have a rich colour pay off that can be applied with ease and with a few lashings of the L'Oreal Miss Manga Mascara will transform my eyes. 

Although I am always tempted to pack an excessive amount of lip products, I have managed to narrow it down to only one; the Tom Ford Addison lipstick. This pink hued lipstick can be worn with a variety of makeup looks, so it's the perfect addition to my makeup bag. 

What is in your travel make up bag? 

Monday 11 January 2016

Get The Glow.

Becca Jaclyn Hill Champagne Pop, Nars Copacabana, Sleek Solstice Palette, The Balm Mary Lou Manizer
Whether it's Winter or Summer, there's one thing my lacklustre skin always craves and that's highlighter. There are a few products that I reach for when I'm faking the glow, so today I have selected a handful of highlighters that I like to use on a regular basis. 

If you're after a budget highlighter that doesn't lack quality or pigmentation then the Sleek Solstice Palette is everything you need. This versatile palette can be used to brighten up the inner corner of your eyes, to define cheekbones or can be swept across the décolletage to add a sheen to the skin. This quad has an array of cream and powder formulas which all adds a lit-from-within glow and for under £10 this palette really is a steal. 

Up next is the Nars Copacabana Illuminator, a pearlescent highlighter that is a must have if you are lusting after dewy skin and wants to add a subtle sheen. The creamy formula blends effortlessly and has a soft, complexion-enhancing finish which compliments and adds emphasis on my contour. This multi purpose product can be mixed in with your foundation or it can be layered on to add radiance to the bridge of your nose, brow bone and across your cheekbones. 

As you may already have guessed, the Becca Champagne Pop Highlighter was bound to feature in this line up. This finely milled, golden shimmer adds a dreamy glow to the skin with a light sweep of a brush. If your skin is looking dull or is in need of a pick me up, then this is the one for you. I apply this liberally all over, but I choose to concentrate on my cheeks as I find that this sculpts and enhances perfectly. 

The one brand that seems to do no wrong when it comes to cheek products is theBalm and the Mary Lou Manizer is no exception. This honey-hued highlighter sculpts and adds a refined glow to the cheekbones. Now, this isn't for the faint hearted, but it's definitely one that I reach for when I want to pack some serious punch. 

What is your go-to highlighter?

Saturday 9 January 2016

A Sink Side Discovery.

And Other Stories Floral Memento Hand Lotion and Hand Wash
My bathroom is currently having an overhaul, throwing out any products that I don't use or which have gone out of date. Amongst stacks of shower gels and an endless supply of shampoo, there are two new additions to my bathroom that have got me hot under the collar. The & Other Stories Floral Memento Hand Wash and Hand Lotion duo are my new bathroom essentials and today I thought I'd share with you my secret to soft, supple hands. 

I currently have the two sitting on my sink ready to transform my parched hands. The hand wash helps to quench and hydrate, using mild cleansing agents to ensure that my hands are kept clean without harshly drying them out. Although the hand wash is running out much faster than I expected, I still have have hardly made a dent in it and it continues to cleanse and subtly scent my mitts. 

I've never been an avid user of hand creams as I usually find that they have a greasy texture and are slow absorbing, making them impractical and hard to keep reapplying throughout the day. This hand lotion offering is lightweight, sinks in within seconds and compliments the hand wash perfectly. With a moisturising concoction of Shea butter, sweet almond and Macadamia oil, this lotion ensures that my hands are left soft, smooth and smelling divine. With a dreamy scent of violet, bergamot and peony it's no wonder this duo has taken pride of place on my bathroom sink.

Have you tried any & Other Stories products? What would you recommend?

Monday 4 January 2016

The Supple Skin Duo

After having a very mild Christmas, the cold weather has well and truly set in now it's January. This means I constantly feel like I need to slather on body lotion every hour, but this Winter I discovered a quick duo that solves all of my dry skin issues, so I thought today I'd share with you my secret. 

First up is the L'Occitane Almond Shower Oil, a moisturising offering that when it comes in contact with water will transform into a luxe, skin softening lather that leaves the skin smelling and feeling divine. After I've scrubbed away any dry patches with my chosen body scrub, I like to apply this to parched skin as this quenches the skin quickly and is perfect for those who only have a few minutes in the morning. 

To follow, the Laura Mericer Crème Brûlée Soufflé Body Crème is my chosen body moisturiser as of late, due to it's rich texture and hydrating properties. The lightweight formula has a strong scent that lingers on the skin for hours after application and it deeply conditions the skin with it's added vitamin A, E and Shea butter. I usually use this in the evening and leave it to sink in over night as it can really get to work at nourishing my body leaving it looking radiant and feeling smooth. 

What products do you use to get hydrated, supple skin?

Friday 1 January 2016

The Detox.

Now that Christmas and New Years Eve are out of the way my whole body is in need of a serious detox. Cue lots of clarifying face masks and no makeup days to try and rid my skin of all the chocolate and sausage rolls I have been consuming over the past couple of weeks. 

There's nothing I like more than multitasking products and the Dove Uplifted+ Body Oil* is the crème de la crème. It can be applied straight to the skin to instantly hydrate and add radiance or it can be added to the bath for a quick fix. 

After weeks of overindulging, my skin is looking rather lacklustre and is in serious need of an intense hit of hydration. The Origins Ginzing Moisturiser is my go-to product if I need to transform and refresh my skin quickly. If this moisturiser isn't enough then I like to use a few drops of the Aesop Fabulous Face Oil in order to brighten, plump and de-congest the skin. 

To finish I like to slather on multiple face masks. Clarifying ones, hydrating ones, the more the merrier. The Antipodes Aura Manuka Maskan antibacterial, deep cleansing offering, is perfect for dry skin types and those who are looking for a mask that will treat redness and blemishes. After the first mask has cleansed, soothed and detoxified my skin, I follow up with a second hydration mask; this time the Origins Drink Up Intensive Mask. This moisture replacement mask quenches the skin overnight, preventing future dehydration and helps to reduce spot healing time - Bonus. 

As a hair product junkie who has fine, lifeless hair I often go overboard with the volumising spray, especially during the festive season. This often leads to product build up which weights down and makes my hair feel limp. To overcome this I like to use Lush Big Shampoo. The large chunks of coarse sea salt add volume and lift to the hair, whilst it clarifies, cleanses and strengthens using a concoction of protein rich seaweed and coconut oil. 

What products are you planning to use this month?
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