Thursday 31 May 2018

Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter

The Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter* has been on my wishlist since it's release, but was something that I never got around to buying before Cult Beauty kindly sent me over a package including it. I was excited to try this glow-inducing base to see what all the fuss was about, and today I'm sharing a few of my first impressions. 

Initially I thought that Flawless Filter would be similar to Wonderglow both in texture and finish, but as it comes in seven different shades I was expecting it to offer a tiny bit of coverage too. I can confirm that it offers minimal coverage if any, yet the blurring effect it gives the skin is similar to Wonderglow, but on a totally different level. Also, the shade is far more of a cooler, pearlier tone than the Wonderglow's slightly champagne, golden hue. I went for the palest shade, but upon deliberation I think the second offering would have been the best pick in hindsight as I have got myself a tan (yay), but it's been working fine for now. 

When used under foundation it doesn't disrupt the texture or formula at all, but instead sits underneath and works as a primer, gripping your base firmly. I do find however that you can easily go a little overboard with how much product you apply if you're not careful -which if you like an extremely glowy look you'll be loving- but during the warmer weather I want to tone down the shine and I blend this in. I still use face powder which may make you wonder if that defeats the object of the product, but I find it gives the most beautiful ethereal glow to the skin and just shines through.  

I've used this mixed in with my foundation and once again it doesn't change the way it sits on my skin at all, in fact it's probably the way to use this product if you want the most natural looking glow as you can dispense as much or as little as you like. For a highlighter after your base I find this adds some punch, especially if you've already used it as a primer too. It's similar to their Beauty Light Wand for me in the palest shade, but it's slightly more of a pearl tone, which isn't something I tend to like on my cheekbones, but this blends into the complexion seamlessly making it a great cream highlighter alternative too. It's not my favourite way to use this product, but it's a great multitasker nevertheless. 

The big doe foot applicator is unique and definitely does avoid you pouring the product out everywhere onto your hands, but I still find I have to have a few dunks back into the bottle to get sufficient coverage of the face. 

Have you tried the Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter? 

If a product is marked with a * it is a PR sample. This post contains affiliate links. 

Wednesday 30 May 2018

End Of Spring Makeup Favourites

The start of June marks the first day of Summer in my eyes and, as the good weather has been around for some time now, I thought it was the perfect time to showcase my end of Spring favourites, including all the makeup picks I've been using over the past couple of months. 

My foundation has changed quite a bit recently as the weather has become hotter so I'm playing around with more luminous bases. The Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter* has been my primer of choice recently after my moisturiser to make sure my skin is prepped and looking glowing, ready for the application of my foundation. Talking of which, I have been switching it up between the Bobbi Brown Skin FoundationCharlotte Tilbury Light Wonder and Too Faced Born This Way depending on the coverage, finish and formula I feel like would fit the day better. 

Adding a dose of colour to my cheeks can always be a tad difficult when it comes to the warmer weather as I find my cheeks get a natural hue to them as the day goes on anyway. The Bobbi Brown Powder Pink Pot Rouge is perfect as the cream to powder formula blends seamlessly into the skin and is super natural too. 

It's hard to pick just one eyeshadow palette, but the Anastasia Beverly Hills Soft Glam Palette* is just perfection whenever I want a day or night time look (plus Cult Beauty have 20% off palettes at the moment until the 1st!). I've gushed about it too many times to go into great detail, but the shades blend perfectly, the array of colours suits all my needs and they have great longevity too, despite me having particularly oily lids at the moment. 

Lipglosses are having their moment in my makeup bag right now; the Becca Glow Gloss* and Pixi Cake Lip Icing* being two I reach for when I want to make my lips appear bigger, fuller and healthier, whereas the Bare Minerals Gen Nude* has been a slow burner for me, but recently this pink shade has been great for everyday wear when I don't want anything matte. 

Brows tend to slip and slide when the weather gets warmer, so I've put my trust in the Benefit 24 Hour Brow Setter and it's done the job perfectly. I simply use the Soap and Glory Brow Archery* to define and add volume and then brush through with the setting gel afterwards to keep them in place. 

Makeup sprays have really come into play as they help to refresh my makeup and keep it looking better for longer. I've been switching between the Caudalie Beauty Elixir* and the Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray* before and after my makeup to make sure it's properly set for the day ahead. Before my makeup, I've been relying on various lotions and potions to keep my skin looking radiant and feeling hydrated, but I've been religiously applying the Glossier Invisible Shield to protect my skin too. 

What are your end of Spring makeup favourites?

If a product is marked with a * it is a PR sample. This post contains affiliate links. 

Sunday 27 May 2018

Easy Sunday Makeup

Whenever Sunday rolls around I'm always torn between doing a full face of makeup to end the week with a bang, or going with a simple, more subtle look because it's the weekend and I always want that extra ten minutes in bed. Today I wanted to share with you one of my favourite easy Sunday looks at the moment. 

I recently rediscovered my love for the L'Oreal Nude Magique Cushion Foundation, a fresh glowing base that has a lightweight finish, yet a generous amount of coverage. You can sheer it out if you want a tint or build it up using a beauty sponge when you want to cover more blemishes or redness. When I want to keep my base light, but eliminate any dark circles, I go in with the Glossier Stretch Concealer which is an extremely creamy concealer that works into the complexion nicely and never looks like you're wearing much on the skin. 

I used to be someone who couldn't go without bronzer and although it's still in my top necessities when I'm doing my makeup, I've discovered the benefits of a complexion boosting blush. The Benefit Coralista is a rediscovery for me, but the peachy coral shade adds the perfect amount of colour to my cheeks to brighten my face. 

After a quick slick of mascara, I go in with a lipgloss. I've never been a fan before, but recently I found a few of them that add a little sheen without being sticky. The Becca Liptuitive Lip Glow* and Pixi Cake Lip Icing* are two of my go-to's as they make my lips look plump and healthy, disguising how chapped and dry they are when I go out. It doesn't give off a high shine sheen either, meaning I feel comfortable wearing them day to day. 

What are your easy Sunday makeup favourites?

If a product is marked with a * it is a PR sample. This post contains affiliate links. 

Saturday 26 May 2018

A Bank Holiday Self-Care Routine

The bank holiday doesn't look like it's bringing much sunshine around this time- much to my disappointment- but as someone who has an extra long weekend off, I'm definitely going to make the most of it anyway. I wanted to share with you a little bit of my weekend self-care routine. 

I feel like I have a lot of sleep to catch up on, but I don't want that to stop me from getting out on my bike, meeting friends for drinks and just enjoying myself too. I feel like my motivation is slowly coming back to blog, so shooting some fashion content would be great if I got around to it - it's something that currently puts a smile on my face. 

A pamper night is 100% on the cards because I need to exfoliate my whole body, fake tan and give myself some extra TLC. Hayfever has caused my skin to go into meltdown; it doesn't know whether it's oily, blemish prone or dehydrated, so I've been getting a mix of all three. A face mask or two in the form of the Fresh Rose Face Mask* will definitely help my complexion out a bit and I'm hoping if I slather myself with the Laura Mercier Creme Brûlée Body Souffle then I'll be rid of my dry patches in no time. 

Along with treating my skin, I want to light a few of my favourite candles and relax with a book for a slow morning as I haven't done that in the longest time. I'm still making my way through the ACOTAR series which I'm loving, but I'm thinking of moving onto lighter reads when I'm done - one that can be read in an afternoon in the sun. 

Other than pampering, I've mentioned that I want to get out on my bike and go out with friends. I've got a taste for Pimms again, so that's definitely on the cards and I'm hoping that Monday is going to be sunny so I can spend it outside in the sun. Self-care isn't always about taking some time out for myself, but to make friends and go out if I want to too. Getting out on my bike is my favourite activity to do and it'll no doubt be something I'll be doing this weekend. Another thing I'd love to do is bake; I have a few ideas whizzing around my head of some tasty treats that I'd like to whip up and I think the long weekend would be the perfect excuse to do so. 

What are your favourite self-care activities? 

If a product is marked with a * it is a PR sample. This post contains affiliate links.

Friday 25 May 2018

Updated Charlotte Tilbury Makeup Collection

Charlotte Tilbury Makeup Collection
Charlotte Tilbury still remains one of my favourite high end brands to buy from; the products are high quality and the packaging is dreamy too. I've grown quite a collection over the years and I thought it was about time I did an updated Charlotte Tilbury round-up post. 

Starting with the latest addition to my collection; the Flawless Filter*. described as a complexion booster, this can be used under your base, with your favourite foundation, or over the top as a highlighter. I've got a full review coming later on this, but my first impression is that I really like it. It adds a glow that can be customised to your liking, but it never looks unnatural or glittery - a great way to add a soft focus and blur filter to the complexion. 

The Light Wonder Foundation has been one of my Spring go-to bases and no doubt I'll be wearing it into the Summer too. It gives just the right amount of coverage on blemishes or redness for everyday wear when it's warm outside, but still looks undetectable on the skin and super natural. It's quite dewy which is something to consider if you prefer matte foundations and, although I was slightly apprehensive to begin with, I've definitely grown to love it even more as I've used it over the past few months. 

Another foundation that Charlotte Tilbury has to offer is their Magic Foundation; a base you'll recognise if you've been reading my blog for a while. Although the colour match I chose would be way off now, it's a foundation that I seriously consider repurchasing whenever I run out of my current base as it offered a great amount of coverage whilst looking flawless on the skin - it's definitely one to have a swatch and see how you feel with the colour matching and formula. 

When the Hollywood Beauty Light Wand and Contour Wand got released I was instantly drawn to them as they're both cream highlighter and contour, which is something I've been really into as of late. I feel like they don't get as much hype as they really ought to because these offer a gorgeous colour pay off, longevity and overall quality too. Although the sponge applicator is a little unhygienic, I look past that due to the highlighter being one of the best I've ever used (yes I said it!) and the contour being the perfect hue for my skin tone. 

The Filmstar Bronze and Glow Palette has been a cult classic for some time now and for a very good reason; the bronzing shade is just the right amount of warmth and cool so that you can use it to contour and to add colour. The highlighter isn't my favourite at the moment, but it's hard to deny that it's still beautiful nevertheless - it's glow looks gorgeous in just a quick sweep across the cheekbones. This palette still remains one of my favourite Charlotte Tilbury products to this day! 
Charlotte Tilbury Makeup Collection
One of the products that moved onto a better home was the Cheek to Chic Blusher because I didn't use it as much as I should have done. The colour Ecstasy used to be my sort of shade, but I didn't get as much wear out of it as I would have liked, so decided to give it away. 

The Retoucher was a concealer I owned many years back, but have kept the packaging purely for this post to come along. It was great under the eyes and offered great coverage, but didn't look too caky. As there's so many concealers on the market to try I rarely go back to the same one and this one didn't wow me nor did it disappoint, so I'd definitely give it another whirl in the future. 

On to eye makeup now and the Dolce Vita Palette of course had to get a mention first. I remember when this was one of the most coveted palettes and for a very good reason too. It's pigmentation is amazing, the quad is easy to use and still remains one of the palettes I bring out every festive season as it's just perfect for parties. Although I've put this to the back of my makeup storage a few times, it always makes it's way to the front, making it one of my long standing favourites. 

I really don't use this Eyes To Mesmerise in Bette enough anymore as the cream to sheen formula would be perfect for the time of year and the colour; a coppery hue, would look great with a tan. This post might just make me put this back into my makeup bag again! Same goes for the Colour Chameleon in Bronzed Garnet which I have to admit I forgot I even owned until writing up this post and realising that it's gone walkabouts. 
Charlotte Tilbury Makeup Collection Lipstick
Due to Charlotte Tilbury being generous and sending over some of their new shades a few months back, my lipstick collection has grown quite a bit. The Duchess* and The Queen* have been welcomed with open arms as the latter is different from anything I've owned before, whereas the former is a classic nude that can do no wrong. Both are easy to wear, comfortable and pigmented - making Charlotte Tilbury one of my favourite high end if not all time lipstick brands. 

A lipstick shade that I used to wear out, but now not so much is Bond Girl. I bought this long before Pillow Talk or The Duchess was ever released and I wanted to wear something more natural. Looking back this was a wrong decision as I find Bond Girl more a brown tone which sits quite dark on me, so this may need to find a better home soon. 

I'm going to be completely honest and say that I've misplaced my Pillow Talk Lip Cheat to my horror as it's one of my favourite lip liners that I feel looks natural, but still does something to the appearance of my lips. The coordinating lipstick, Pillow Talk is the perfect hue for if you want an easy everyday nude that is matte, but still offers a little moisture so it can sit perfectly on the lips. My blog post for it still remains one of my most read posts of all times, so I think it's a firm favourite in many people's makeup bags. 

Lastly is Legendary Queen*, an intense red that was basically made for your Christmas party. It's a Matte Revolution formula which makes it super matte, yet comfortable too. It's slightly more brighter than it looks online, but it's gorgeous nevertheless. I've got a full line up of the Your Lip Service lipstick trio here

Here are the products that are currently on my Charlotte Tilbury wishlist: 

What are your favourite Charlotte Tilbury products? 

If a product is marked with a * it is a PR sample. This post contains affiliate links. 

Thursday 24 May 2018

30 Summer Beauty Blog Post Ideas

30 Summer Beauty Blog Post Ideas
I'm not sure if it's the blue skies that make photographing a little harder to do in the Summer, or if I just feel less motivated, but I find coming up with ideas for blog posts so much harder when there's not the Christmas season or Autumn/ Winter in general to think about. I think many others are in a similar boat, so today I have compiled a list of some of my top Summer beauty blog post ideas (plus a few lifestyle ones thrown in for good measure) to help you along this season. 

- Summer Skincare Routine 
- A Pamper Routine For Warm Weather 
- Hayfever-Proof Makeup
- Eye Creams For Dry Eyes
- SPF Favourites 
- A Full Face of Glossier
- A Makeup Routine Perfect For The Pub Garden
- Lightweight, Everyday Makeup
- Favourite Scents For Summer 
- Top Moisturiser Picks  
- Nourishing Hair Treats
- A Summer Makeup Bag Tour
- Sweat-Proof Makeup 
- Unique Summer Product Finds (SPF for your hair etc.)
- Coconut/Peach Scented Favourites 
- Fake Tan Routine 
- Pink Lipstick Favourites 
- A Summer To-Do List 
- Places You'd Like To Visit 
- A Simple Five Product Face 
- Bright Lipsticks For Summer 
- Products That Add A Little Autumn To Your Summer
- Wedding Guest Makeup
- A Summer Beauty Wishlist
- Peachy Pink Blushers
- A Seasonal Makeup Round Up
- Favourite Setting Sprays 
- Luminous, Everyday Subtle Highlighters 
- Cream Blusher Dream Teams 
- A Smudge-Proof Eye Look

What blog posts do you want to see this Summer? 

Tuesday 22 May 2018

New In Spring Beauty

After receiving some pretty amazing parcels at the end of last week, I thought I would compile a few photographs of them to share my first thoughts and feelings with you.

First up, I got sent a parcel from Cult Beauty and when I looked inside I couldn't believe my luck - so many beauty treats to play around with! The first thing that caught my eye was the Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter* which has been on my wishlist since it's release. I've tried it every day since it arrived and I'm loving it so far, especially under makeup, but I feel like I keep getting too enthusiastic with my application wanting to apply it anywhere and everywhere. 

Next is another product I've been using for several days and it's the Sol De Janeiro Ipanema Sunset Glow Oil* which I can confirm smells like the inside of a Hollister (if you know, you know) and makes my limbs look perfect. I apply it to my shins, collarbone, over my shoulders and anywhere else that needs a pick me up and I'm obsessed. It says you can use it on your face too and with the longevity it offers for the body, I'm definitely giving that a shot! 

Hourglass is one of my favourite high end brands and yet I've only tried one element of their range; their blusher, bronzer and face powders. I kindly got sent the Femme Nude Lip Stylo* and and just the shade name 'nude rose' got me excited. The fact I've worn it since Friday says a lot as a lipstick hoarder. My lips are fairly dehydrated at the moment so I do have to wear this with a little lip balm underneath, but so far so good.

It's hard to believe I haven't tried any highlighting product from Laura Geller considering it's what their most famous for, so when one of their Dewdreamer Illuminating Drops* came through I was super excited to give them a whirl. I'm going to be honest and say I've only swatched this as I found the Flawless Filter gave me as much glow as I needed, but I will be sure to give these a go soon. 

On to skincare from Cult Beauty and I got the Clear Skin Cleanser*; an oil cleanser that has helped to remove my stubborn mascara and eyeliner duo. I'm still uncertain about this as of yet because of how thick the oil actually is when massaged into your skin (something I feel my skin would love during the winter) but I will be sure to report back as soon as I've tried it out for a few more weeks. 

Next up are some treats from World Duty Free featuring two brands I've never tried anything from; Givenchy and Omorovicza. The latter is a skincare brand that reminds me of the likes of Oskia. I got the Introductory Kit* that they're currently offering and it includes a great array of products; a spray, moisturiser and mask - They're currently in my to-try pile, but the spray smells divine and very much of lavender. 

When the Givenchy Le Rouge Mat in Rouge Stiletto* arrived I was pleasantly surprised with how gorgeous the product, packaging and overall look of it was - this matte red is to die for. It's ultra-matte even in the tube and it gives me all of the Christmas vibes, but would be great for a statement lip on a night out. I also got their Gloss Interdit* which I'm not sure on the colour at the moment for me, but I can imagine it'll look great with a tan and a bare base! 
What beauty products are you lusting after at the moment? 

If a product is marked with a * it is a PR sample. This post contains affiliate links. 

Friday 18 May 2018

Skincare For Hay Fever

I've been suffering with dry skin and breakouts recently as illness, hay fever and allergies has come into play. I've stripped my skincare routine back down to the basics of what I know my skin loves and reacts to well, and in doing so I've dug out some old favourites to help soothe my complexion. Here are a few of my top picks: 

Eye cream is a must have around this time of year. I can't quite believe how irritated, cracked and itchy my eyes are - it's the worst they've ever been! The Drunk Elephant Shaba Complex Eye Serum* has been a favourite as it's lightweight, yet still nourishing and it's finally started to help how the skin around my eyes feel. 

If I do decide to wear makeup, I've found a good trio of products which prep my skin ready. I start off with the Clinique Turnaround Accelerated Skin Serum* and follow up with the Clinique Moisture Surge* which makes my skin feel hydrated and ultra-silky and soft. I then rekindled the love for my Glossier Priming Moisturiser and have been using that as the third step to make sure my skin looks healthy and plump. 

I have quite a few face masks to choose from, but the lightweight, nourishing offerings are my go-to, especially when it's warm outside. The Glow Recipe Watermelon Mask* and Origins Drink Up Intensive are two of my favourites when my skin needs a boost of hydration, yet has redness to calm down and blemishes to banish too. They're super easy to use and help my skin so much. 

My body, especially my inner arms, are in dire need of some TLC as hay fever and allergies aren't just affecting my face. The Nuxe Dry Body Oil* is one a few products I've been loving (see full line up here) and although it's thicker than other body care products I use during these seasons, I can't deny how much my body loves to drink this up. 

What skincare products do you like to use when you're suffering with hay fever? 

If a product is marked with a * it is a PR sample. This post contains affiliate links. 

Tuesday 15 May 2018

The Affordable Ruffle Wrap Dress

This is new isn't it? Creating fashion content is completely alien to me, but what I thought I'd struggle with - the posing- is actually the thing I feel most comfortable with and it's the editing and actual photography part that I'm struggling with. I think it's because I always have the exact image I want in my head, so please bear with me whilst I find my feet! I wanted to share my favourite ruffle wrap dress; an offering I'll be wearing all Summer no doubt. 

This Influence Ruffle Wrap Front Floral Dress is lightweight, flattering and comfortable to wear, I love it so much I'm contemplating getting the Midi version of it too. You'll be pleased to hear that you can see no underwear through it and at £16 in the sale (don't walk, run!) it's an absolute steal! The wrap part is one of the only dresses I've recently found that actually flatter my boobs and the tie around the waist can be cinched in as much as you like. I also get quite a lot of questions on these shoes whenever I show them, but unfortunately they're a few years old. I have seen some great alternatives around including these ASOS Fayla Tie Flat Sandals and Park Lane Suede Tie Sandals too. 

As someone who gets rather bored with sunglasses I never like to particularly invest in them, but these Quay Australia Cherry Bomb ones have changed my mind. They weren't extremely expensive, but it made me realise that I've found quite a few styles that actually suit me and I'd like to invest in some more pieces - Ray Ban maybe? 

I've got quite a few pieces on my wishlist at the moment as I really am trying to overhaul my wardrobe and get some variety in to it, as most of the stuff I've had for years is looking worse for wear or no longer fits me. Here are a few of the items I'm eyeing up: 

What is on your wardrobe wishlist for Summer? 

This post contains affiliate links. 

Sunday 13 May 2018

What I've Been Reading, Watching and Doing Lately

April and May have been awash with rain, to a sudden spate of sunshine and then quickly went back to showers, so it hasn't done a lot for my productivity. With puppies to play with, books to read and the sun to make the most I can't complain too much. 

I've continued reading the Court Of Thorns and Roses trilogy, reading over 100 pages at a time and I've made my way through them at a record rate. Honestly, I'm absolutely smitten and although the story at times can be a little cringe, the characters have hooked me in and all I want to do is read more. Luckily her new book is out now and although it's not even 300 pages long, I can't wait to devour it in one sitting. 

As for what I've been up to in-between lots of work, our neighbours have a gorgeous puppy who comes to play every now and again. She's honestly such a dream and I've featured her on my Insta stories before, so you've probably seen her already. On top of that, we've finally booked our biking holiday for this year and we've got together quite a big group of us going so it should be fun, although we've got quite a few events near each other so it'll be a busy July for sure. I've been looking at places to go and activities to do over the next few months, so no doubt you'll see our adventures on the blog or Instagram soon. I also took an unexpectedly week off and it did me wonders; I felt like I had burnt myself out creatively and it was starting to affect my everyday life. Although I'm not 100% yet, I'm getting back into the swing of things and I feel like everything else is settling into place. 

I've found the Great British Bake Off back catalogue on Netflix and I've devoured a couple of series at a worryingly fast rate. It's usually my cosy programme, but I've found that it's really rekindled my love for baking too! Aside from that, we're patiently waiting for Deadpool 2 to come out mid-May, but we went to see the new Avengers film and it was so good. It was the perfect combination of funny, entertaining and sad, so definitely prepare yourself for a rollercoaster of emotions. 

Also on Netflix I've started rewatching Love Island ready for the new series (I'm shamefully excited to have six weeks of my life filled with it!). We're also half way through the series Safe, which is a crime thriller and it's so damn good - so gripping and it's very difficult not to just binge watch the lot in one go. 

What have you been reading, watching and doing lately? 

Friday 11 May 2018

Prepping My Skin For Summer

The sudden spate of hot weather made me go into panic mode; shaving my legs, prepping my body and make sure my skin was in tip top condition. From hay fever to bare legs, here are a handful of products I've been using recently.

Starting from the bottom, I was kindly sent the Soap and Glory Heel Genius Foot Cream* with a pair of their Snooze Socks* to treat my feet to a bit of extra TLC. I used to use this foot cream in miniature form when I was younger, so rekindling the love has been a dream. After giving myself a pedicure and my feet a buff, I pop this lotion on for a couple of hours to make my feet feel super soft (which is a hard thing to do trust me!). I've still got a long way to go until I get them where I want them, but they definitely look a little less dehydrated. 

After sunning myself all bank holiday weekend, I was in dire need of my lotions and potions to avoid the dreaded dry, scaly look. The Nuxe After Sun Lotion* was one I reached for because it promised to prolong tanning and soothe the skin. It made my skin feel soft without being too heavy and it's so far done the job of keeping my tan intact. 

In the shower, I've been using the Glossier Body Hero Oil Wash again and it's been great for adding an extra boost of hydration when I needed it, especially when my skin is feeling sensitive due to hay fever. It's great when paired with the Herbivore Coco Rose Scrub too as it helps to make my body look good after being stuck under several layers all Winter. 

On to skincare and I only picked a few of my favourites for the Summertime as I'm planning a full line up post soon. The Antipodes Aura Manuka Honey Mask* has been spoken about a few times on my blog, but it's antibacterial properties keep blemishes at bay- something that I struggle with when it comes to warmer weather. For hydration, it's been the Clinique Turnaround Accelerated Serum* that I've been reaching for; it goes underneath my moisturiser perfectly and makes it look healthy, supple and glowing. Hayfever is getting the better of me at the moment, so eye cream has been a must-have. I'm currently using a few different tubs, but it's the La Roche Posay Toleraine Ultra Eye Contour* I'm talking about today. It's lightweight whilst still being super hydrating and it goes underneath makeup without disturbing it too. 

What products have you been using lately in this warm weather? 

If a product is marked with a * it is a PR sample. This post contains affiliate links. 

Thursday 10 May 2018

Mini Victoria Sponges

Mini Victoria Sponge Recipe
Mini victoria sponges have been something of a speciality of mine for many years now. They can be made in as large or small batches as you'd like - perfect for a small gathering or a birthday party. They're super easy to make and if you're more experienced in the art of cupcake making, but you find a huge cake a bit intimidating, these are a great place to start. 

Ingredients (Makes 12) 

For Sponge - 
2 Eggs
60g Granulated Sugar
60g Golden Caster Sugar
120g Butter (I use dairy free)
120g Self Raising Flower
2 Tsp Vanilla Extract

For Icing -
Jam as desired 
300g Icing Sugar 
150g Butter (I use dairy free)


Preheat the oven to 170C. Cream together the butter and sugar until light. Add in the two eggs one by one, stirring as you go. Once mixed, add the vanilla extract, 1 tablespoon of warm water and a pinch of salt (it brings out the flavour). Mix thoroughly. 

Next weigh out the flour, sift if needed and then gradually add the flour into the mixture. Keep stirring until the mixture is smooth and mixed. Divide the mixture between 12 and place in the oven 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. 

Let cool and then prepare your icing mixture. I start off with a small amount of icing sugar and butter first, adding in the ingredients gradually until I get the desired amount and texture. Cut the sponges into two horizontally, spooning the butter cream mixture on one side and the jam of the other. Place together and decorate. 

Will you be trying this recipe? 

Wednesday 9 May 2018

MAC Top Picks

- This post is in collaboration with Debenhams - 

When you spend £60 or more on MAC cosmetics at Debenhams you receive a complimentary gift with your purchase, which includes some amazing miniatures (a foundation sample, a cleansing oil, mascara and primer) and a full sized contour brush with a MAC makeup bag too! This offer spurred me on to collate a post including my top 
 MAC products plus a few new picks on my wishlist too. 

MAC was one of the first ever high end makeup brands I owned; I remember quite clearly going into the Brighton branch on the look out for the Mineralise Skinfinish Natural and coming out with a powder foundation instead as I got confused half way round. Eight years later and the MSF has made it into my collection and has been here to stay ever since. For a pressed powder this has seen me through my oily days and drier skinned ones too. It blurs pores and imperfections without looking cakey or too lacklustre, making it one of my most reached for pressed powders. 

MAC's blushers used to be all the rage and I still feel like they deserve the hype. MAC's Mocha is hands down one of the most beloved shades in my collection, it's travelled through the mid teens to my early twenties with me and the natural mauve-pink blusher is great throughout the year. It's completely matte, which is exactly what I want sometimes when I'm wearing an illuminous base and excessive highlighter, as it stops me from looking like I've bathed in glitter. The hue compliments my skin tone both at it's palest and most tanned, making it not only one of my most used blushers, but my most used makeup items of all time. 

A lipstick just had to be featured in this round up as, although I've descaled my MAC lipstick collection quite a fair bit, I've still got a few of my favourites in there. Picking just one to talk about is hard because almost all of them have a little back story behind them. MAC Twig, I feel like was an underrated shade for quite some time, overshadowed by Brave and Velvet Teddy, the other much loved and raved about nude pink shades. Twig just compliments my skin tone perfectly and is so easy to wear daily and to touch up on the go. It sits comfortably, makes my lips look plump and healthy, so it's hard to fault it really! 

The new Prime and Prep Fix+ Sprays have definitely caught my eye, especially the rose one as my skin tends to drink it up, but the Pinklite Shimmer is just on another level (just look at that packaging!). The Strobe Cream has been on my wishlist for some time and, as I feel like I embrace the illuminated look a lot more recently, I think I need to finally give it a go. 

Will you be taking advantage of this great Debenhams deal with MAC? 
This post contains affiliate links. 

Tuesday 8 May 2018

Glossier Invisible Shield

With a sudden spate of hot weather in the UK over the past few weeks, I've finally been able to put the Glossier Invisible Shield to the test properly; making sure it protects my skin adequately, not just make my skin feel smooth and prepped for makeup. Here are my thoughts: 

Just like it's name, it offers invisible protection leaving no white cast on the face. It promises to be non-comedogenic which means it's made to not block the pores. This is something I always worry about when applying SPF to the face, because sometimes they can be a too thick and heavy on the skin. I've mentioned it before, but I really love the way this feels on the skin whereby it is silky and smooth without any silicone to be seen. When I apply foundation over the top, it looks flawless and doesn't interrupt the formula at all. 

You're supposed to reapply it every two hours, so thats a little impossible if you do decide to wear a base, and even if you don't anyway (the recent heat made me go bare faced!), applying it every two hours is slightly inconvenient, although not unheard of when it comes to SPF.

It's simple, smells slightly of oranges (so you may need to be extra careful if you're sensitive to scents) and I haven't had a burnt face since using it, so it's definitely doing it's job. I really rate it and it's definitely in the top SPF's I've tried for my face; in fact it's quite rare for me to remember to use protection everyday, but with this one it's a delight. 

Have you tried the Glossier Invisible Shield?

- For 10% off your first Glossier order you can use my link here

This post contains affiliate links. 

Saturday 5 May 2018

Banish Acne Scars Starter Kit

- This post is in collaboration with Banish Acne Scars - 

Throughout my teenage years I always suffered with several spots at a time which, combined with some bad skincare advice, led me to have quite a few bits of scarring and redness on my face; especially around my nose, chin and in between my brows. I then was challenged by Banish Acne Scars to see if their Starter Kit could begin helping me with my problems, so I thought it was definitely worth a shot. 

Exfoliating face masks always react well with my skin, so I was looking forward to trying out the Pumpkin Enzyme Masque as it contains an array of skin loving ingredients including AHA's to exfoliate the skin, making it appear clearer and smoother. This smells like something you'd find around Autumn time, but it really works. After one use, my skin was glowing and, despite it drying down, it didn't make my skin feel tight. I've been using this before my makeup when I want it to go on more smoothly and it's been a dream. 

When I first opened up the Pore Smasher I think I might have squealed with excitement as I've wanted to try a contraption like this for some time now. It's big, so it covers a large area at a time and it's oh-so-cooling, which is perfect for warm days. As for the skin benefits, it certainly de-puffs the skin (to my surprise) and it really reduces redness, which is why I like to use it in the morning before makeup application. I've been using this every day and it's one of the first things I reach for. If I'm honest I thought the novelty would wear off after a while, but it's been amazing to use! 

The Activated Charcoal Clay Masque comes in a powder form and makes me feel like I'm mixing lotions and potions together. Although I've got dry skin and was skeptical that this would dry my skin out even more, I apply it where I get blemishes the most around my nose, chin and in-between my eyebrows and I've since seen an improvement in the way my skin looks (plus I've got a lot less blackheads on my nose - hurray!). This does bring a lot of impurities to the surface, which then makes my blemishes come out, but after a day or two they start to disappear and that's when you see the difference it's made. 

Vitamin C is one of my favourite ingredients to use on my skin, so I knew that the Vitamin C Beauty Elixir would be the product I'd want to get along with. Vitamin C has helped me calm my redness, brighten my lacklustre complexion and help with general smoothness and texture. The fact it comes in a spray bottle is something I haven't seen before or used, but the minty scent is so lovely as it's super refreshing. It's doesn't make the skin too 'soggy', but it has a slight tackiness to it, making it a great primer for the skin before makeup. I particularly like using this on days when I'm not wearing any makeup too, as it sinks in after a couple of minutes leaving the complexion feeling soft, smooth and radiant. 

I've never used anything like the Banisher Stamp or Roller before, in fact I've alway been slightly scared to try it out. It's supposed to reduce the appearance of acne scars- which is something I previously mentioned I suffer from on my chin and around my nose especially- so I was excited to start the process of reducing them. You're only supposed to use it every 2 weeks, but I did feel like these made a difference when using products and how my skin then absorbed them. The Banisher works by creating tiny micro wounds which trick the skin into thinking it needs repairing, thus boosting cell regeneration which helps with acne scars over time, working in a similar way to micro needling. I use it with the Banish Oil which is a thick oil that sinks into the skin beautifully, doesn't leave it feeling oily and makes my skin feel super smooth. 

As a side note Banish are vegan friendly (if you're wondering!), are made freshly using fresh ingredients and they now ship internationally from the US. For more about the backstory behind the brand you can read it here, but for a quick summary Banish was started by a girl called Daisy who had suffered with acne since school. Her dream job was to be a dermatologist and she set out to find a fix. Daisy started her own YouTube channel and upon discovering other people who suffered with acne, she started Banish with the ingredients and products she'd put together which had reduced hers and other people's acne. 

Have you tried Banish Acne Scars? 
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