Sunday, 29 April 2012

Leeds Haul

Haul Origins Lush Body Shop Illamasqua

I’ve been back from Leeds for less than an hour, and I thought I would share my purchases with you all. I went up on Friday to see Nik as he is working there for a month, so I am now forever waiting for the weekend to come. He was working Saturday so I had a few hours to myself to explore the shops.

On Jayne’s recommendation the first place I headed was the Victorian quarter which has some has some gorgeous boutiques, and made a great change to walking through yet another cookie cutter shopping centre. I took Nik back there today and even managed to get him to treat himself to some Neal's Yard skincare (my shopping habits are clearly rubbing off on him)I was very happy to find a Space NK and Nik treated me to a full size Caudalie Beauty Elixir (which I have just ran out of, you can see my review here) and a new set of Shu Uemura Lash Curlers, as mine were far from at their best. The lady was lovely enough to put some Ren/Nars samples in my bag so I look forward to trying those out.

I also picked up a the Laura Mercier Mineral Foundation from Harvey Nichols, as my skin is a bit better and I wanted something light to wear for daytime.  I repurchased Illamasqua’s Medium Pencil in Vow (a gorgeous nude for the waterline) and got the Cream Blusher in Lies which looks beautiful.

I also got a Orgins cleanser to use in the morning and some handbag essentials from the Body Shop.

If there is anything you would like to see reviews/swatches of let me know and I will try to get to them first!

What have you been hauling lately?

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Decleor Aroma Purete

Decleor are a skincare brand I am always fawning over and I love their Aroma Cleanse Phytopeel. So when I heard they were bringing out a range for oily/combination skin I had to share my excitement.

decleor aroma purete

Apparently 50% of women in Europe have oily skin with visible pores, and Decleor have reformulated their Aroma Purete range to help balance oily skins.

The range includes:

AROMESSENCE™ YLANG YLANG SERUM 15ML, RRP £44.00 Expensive? Yes. But sounds amazing, oily skinned ladies should be afraid of products containing oils (this contains Ylang Ylang, Clary Sage, Lemon Essential Oil, Lavender Oil) I find starving my skins of oils really doesn’t help with my acne prone skin, and I am considering trying this when my Liz Earle Superskin runs out.

AROMA PURETÉ SHINE CONTROL OXYGENATING FLUID 50ML, RRP £24.00 A mattifying moisturiser is essential in my routine, and I don’t think £24 is a bad price for a good quality moisturiser. Another one to check out at the counter.

AROMA PURETÉ 2 IN 1 PURIFYING AND OXYGENATING MASK 50ML, RRP £22.00 This is an exfoliant and a mask in one. And I love a dual purpose product (except for those 2 in1 shampoo conditioner things – yuck) they save so much space and time. This contains Bamboo Tears, Egyptian Loofah Fibres and Spheres of White Jojoba to eliminate dead skin cells, hydrate and mattify.

AROMA PURETÉ IMPERFECTIONS ROLL ON 10ML, RRP £15.00 If you struggle with blemishes, you probably have a stash of spot treatments, and I always like to have one to hand for when I feel a spot starting to appear. I haven’t heard of a spot treatment that contains essential oils, so I think this would be an interesting one to try if more traditional spot treatments don’t work for you.

AROMA NIGHT YLANG YLANG PURIFYING NIGHT BALM 15ml RRP £32.50, 30ml RRP £55.00 This is the product I most want to try, I don’t have anything like it in my skincare stash. It claims to make skin looks cleaner, healthier and give a radiant glow.

Do you suffer with oily skin? Anything from this range you want to try?

Aroma Purete launches on Decleor counters on May 1st.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Japonesque Blush and Brow Brushes

Japonesque Blusher Blush Brush

Japonesque Eyebrow Brush

Following on from my first post on Japonesque (link) they were kind enough to send me a couple other brushes to try. I was sent the Blush Brush and the Brow Definer Brush. I have been using these brushes pretty much daily, and they have both really impressed me.

The blush brush is such a perfect shape and size for blush, and makes blending it really easy. It picks up quite a lot of pigment, so is great for sheerer blushes, but be careful with more heavily pigmented shades. That when used with my more pigmented blushes (like Nars Torrid) it blends the product out so well and because the brush isn’t as big as say the Real Techniques Blush Brush you won’t end up looking like a clown, and having to waste more time correcting it. This also works beautifully with powder highlighters, as the shape fits along the angles (or lack of in my case…) of the cheek bone. I love the size of these brushes, I’m going to Leeds this weekend and there’s no way I will be carting a load of big chunky brushes up there with me! Japonesque brushes fit perfectly in my makeup bag and I have never had any problems with them getting misshapen.

The brow brush has come close to changing my life.. well that may be a slight exaggeration. What can I say groomed brows excite me! I was using a Mac Angled Brush, which did the job but it was too flimsy, and didn’t give me a straight enough line or enough control. The Japonesque Brow Definer however, is just firm enough, picks up just enough colour, and shaves a good five minutes of me faffing around with my brows from my routine.

You can find Japonesque Travel size brushes at Boots (link) where the Blush Brush costs £22.00 and the Brow Definer costs £9.50

Disclaimer: PR Samples.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Macadamia Oil Deep Repair Masque

Macadamia Deep repair mask
I picked up this sachet from the shop that I mentioned in this post which carries the whole line of Macadamia Oil products. I was originally going to get the oil, but it seemed like it was mainly silicone, which I try to avoid in large quantities, as it really builds up on my hair. I did wanted to try something though so I settled on the mask (which does contain silicone- but as I won’t be using it daily I don’t mind so much).
Now this is expensive, this sachet cost me £3.75, which  I think is slightly more than you would pay online (link) but I didn’t want to wait for postage, and as much as I tried to only use half of this, I ended up using the whole thing. My hair isn’t long, it’s just past shoulder length, but it is very thick and I have a lot of it, so if you have more normal or fine hair you will get more uses out of this.
It smells really nice, not nutty like I was expecting, but a light floral scent. It says to leave it on for around 7 minutes but I left it on for half an hour, and left it to do its thing while I got on with some errands.
My hair felt really conditioned when I washed this off, and after letting this air dry and straightening my hair looked a lot smoother and healthier. I was expecting a lot from this mask and while I don’t think it lived up the the massive hype it receives online it was a nice mask and my hair definitely felt a lot healthier after using it. I will probably be picking up another sachet to try and if I still like it I might invest in the full size.
Do you use any of the Macadamia Oil products? Any recommendations?

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Bourjois 123 Perfect Foundation Review

Bourjois 123 Perfect Foundation Review Swatch Swatched

To say I’d become foundation obsessed lately would be somewhat of an understatement. After falling head over heels in love with Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum foundation I had to try their latest release, the 123 Perfect Foundation. This foundation claims to correct uneven skin tones with different coloured pigments, yellow for dark circles, mauve for dullness and green for redness.

123 Perfect is a medium coverage bordering on full, it has quite a thick texture and a satin/demi matt finish. I apply this with a Sigma F80, which I find gives a more natural finish, this foundation really benefits from being worked into the skin properly.

I do find that this does really even out my skin tone, it covers my redness, and if I apply it under my eyes takes care of my dark circles (well it covers them, it doesn’t illuminate in anyway) and if my skin isn’t freaking out too much I can skip concealer.

This works really well with my oily skin, it doesn’t last the 16 hours that it claims but it lasts a good 8-10 before it starts to look a little worse for wear. If you have dry skin however I would tread carefully with this, I have a couple of dry patches from using Panoxyl and if I don’t prep my skin properly, it clings to it like nothing else.

I think this is a great quality, inexpensive foundation and works well for everyday. It lives up to most of its claims and lasts really well throughout the day. I have been wearing this pretty much continuously since I got it and I would definitely repurchase. The main downside with this, as with most Bourjois foundations is the shade range, it comes in five shades, and I can just get away with the lightest shade, I don’t think it would suit me in winter, when I’m paler; sort it out Bourjois!

Bourjois 123 Perfect Foundation costs £10.99 (currently on offer for £6.99) and you can find it at Boots (link)

Friday, 20 April 2012

Bargain of the Week

Revlon Strawberry Suede Raspberry Bite

I have been lusting after some harder to find Revlon shades for about a year know, but I’m not keen on using eBay, and well laziness prevailed.

There’s a discount cosmetics shop in Loughborough, called Blush Beauty Box that I love browsing when I feel like grabbing a bargain. They have recently moved to a bigger location and stock some great brands both high end and high street, if your in the Leicestershire area I really recommend checking them out! You can view their website here

Whilst browsing the lipsticks I found the discontinued Strawberry Suede and Raspberry Bite (which I think is US exclusive?) they weren’t priced, but I knew I had to have them.  These were £1.99 each!

I’m not sure why I didn’t immediately go and raid the stand, but I’m sure I will find myself back there very soon!

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Lips Red as Blood. Hair Black as Night.

Snow White and The Huntsman Diego Dalla Palma

When you have as much make up as I do, it takes something really special get me really excited. Diego Dalla Palma’s Snow White and the Huntsman Palette has got me weak at the knees.

Diego Dalla Palma are the official cosmetics partner to the Snow White and the Huntsman movie which stars Kristen Stewart as Snow White, and Charlize Theron as the Evil Queen, and is released on June 1st in the UK. I cannot wait for this film to be released, Snow White was the first Disney film I saw as a child, and I can’t wait to see this more sinister adaptation

The palette contains six gorgeous neutrals (three shimmers; Snow, Shield and Mirror Mirror and three mattes; Fairest, Destiny and Battleground) a beautiful (and full size) blood red lipstick in The Wicked Queen and a black eyeliner pencil in Dark Night

I’m already creating looks with this in my head and think it would work equally well for the simple look that Kristen Stewart wears in the film, or a more dramatic evil queen look (which I will no doubt be sporting when I drag Nik to see the movie)

This palette will retail at a very reasonable £25 (it has a £105 value!) and will be available exclusively at Tesco stores and Tesco Direct.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Step into Summer with Liz Earle


Just a quick post today to let you guys know about a great offer currently on Liz Earle’s website. For £39.75 you get 10 travel size  products (£71.75 Value), making this a great way to try the line without committing to full size products.

Included in the set are:

Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser 50ml tube + 1 muslin cloth
Instant Boost Skin Tonic Spritzer 30ml
Skin Repair Moisturiser - Dry/sensitive 15ml tube
Brightening Treatment Mask 50ml tube
Energising Body Wash 100ml bottle
Energising Body Scrub 50ml tube
Foot Scrub 15ml tube
Foot Repair Moisturiser 15ml tube
Foot Spritzer 75ml
Botanical Shine Shampoo for all hair types 50ml tube

Liz Earle products are ones I always have a stash of, I always go straight back to them if I react badly to something, and I really can’t recommend them enough!

You can find this offer here and read my other Liz Earle posts here.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

French Pharmacy Skincare: Bioderma Sebium H2O

BiodermaMicelle Solution H2O Sebium

So after trying and loving both the La Roche Posay and Vichy Miceller Solutions,but finding I was getting through them really quickly I finally decided to try Bioderma’s H20. Even with shipping this works out a lot better value for money.

I got the version for oily/combination skin, but the range also includes one for sensitive skin, which is fragrance free. The Sebium H20 does contain fragrance ( although it is the last ingredient, so I would assume not massive quantities) and also contain Citric Acid, to help control oil.

I use this in the same way I use the Vichy or La Rochy Posay, with about three cotton pads, one for each eye and one for my face. So how does it compare to other Miceller Waters? Personally I think it knocks the socks of the others I have tried! It removed my eye make up a lot better, but still leaves no residue or stinging, and I feel it does help to control oil a lot better.

Price wise, as I said it is a lot more cost effective with a 500ml bottle costing around  £15 including shipping (I used this seller on eBay) compared to over £10 for the Vichy and La Roche Posay both of which only contain 250ml.

I have definitely found my perfect make up remover and I will not be without it! Yes it is a little hard to get hold of, and is more expensive here than in France, but it still cheaper than versions available here, and more importantly it works!

I’ll definitely be trying more products from Bioderma, and would really recommend the seller I used, the product arrived in 2 days and was well packaged.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Jewel Rhi–Don’t Cross Me Necklace

other side of cool jewellery

other side of cool jewellery2

The lovely Rhi from The Other Side Of Cool (link – if your not following you should be!) sent me this necklace to review about a month ago.This post is long overdue, I have been too busy wearing it to photograph it!

‘Don’t Cross Me’ features six crosses and has a gorgeous heart clasp – a brilliant touch, which although it will probably be hidden by hair, it makes the piece that bit more special, and different to something you would find

I have been wearing this non-stop since I got it, as it is so easy to wear, and goes with whatever you want to pair it with.It is well made and better quality than many high street jewellery offerings.

All of Rhi’s jewellery has a great combination of girly and edgy design, and just looks effortless. I never feel like I’m trying to hard when I wear this.

I also want to mention that haven’t had any issues with my skin going green or itchy from wearing this, something which happens to me a lot when I wear necklaces. The chain is really great quality and hasn’t altered in colour or gone dull.

If you read Rhi’s blog (and if you dont off you go, you won’t regret it) you’ll know she lives in Malta but she offers recorded delivery for a very reasonable £2, and my necklace arrived well packaged in just a few days.

Jewel Rhi ranges from £3.00 - £6.50 in price, and also do custom designs. You can find Jewel Rhi here – link.

Disclosure: I was sent this to review, this in no way changes my opinion.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

L’Oreal Paris Rouge Caresse Aphrodite Scarlett

L'Oreal Caresse 06 Aphrodite Scarlett

L'Oreal Caresse 06 Aphrodite Scarlett 2

I spotted these a while ago, but for some reason haven’t bought one until now. Not sure why, perhaps over excited for the Revlon Lip Butters?

L’Oreal Rouge Caresse are another sheer lipstick/balm hybrid to pop up on the highstreet. As with the Revlon Lip Butters I don’t find these to be revolutionary, I think they have filtered down from the popularity of more expensive sheer lipsticks, like the Chanel Rouge Coco Shines.

I don’t find the formula of this to be like the Lip Butters at all. The Caresses' are a lot more translucent, slightly easier to apply but don’t last as long.

L'Oreal Caresse 06 Aphrodite Scarlett Swatch

Aphrodite Scarlet is a gorgeous pinky red shade that gives a beautiful pop of colour. L’Oreal have got the texture of these spot on, they feel weightless and moisturising at the same time, and don't have the same thickness and tacky feeling as Revlon offerings.

My only gripe is with the shade range, which is mainly pinks and nudes, although it does have enough variety I would of liked to have seen an orange shade for summer. The other red shade looks beautiful, and I will definitely be picking it up when I can find a Boots/Superdrug that has it in stock.

You can find L’Oreal Rouge Caresse Lipsticks at Boots where they cost £7.99

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Organix Coconut Milk Shampoo and Anti - Breakage Serum

Organix Coconut Milk Serum Shampoo

I’ve been using the Naked hair care range for about a year and a half now, and I fancied a change. These are two products that I bought about a month ago and have been absolutely obsessed with.

If you like coconut scents, I suggest you go buy these, they smell flipping amazing! I spend a stupid amount of time just smelling these, they just smell really coconutty and just lovely.

The shampoo is SLS free and at first I found the texture really strange, it has a very thick almost jelly like consistency. I take a really small amount and massage it in my hands, and I get a really creamy rich lather. I much prefer these to the Naked shampoos, which are too watery and don’t lather enough for me. If you are debating ditching SLS this would be a great shampoo to start with as, it lathers just as well (if not better) than regular shampoo.

I should also say that I have a very sensitive scalp, and prone to dandruff and an itchy sore scalp. I haven’t had any adverse reactions to this, and have had less problems with product build up and feel my hair is a lot cleaner than when I use the Naked shampoo.

I included the serum in my March Favourites, and it is the only styling product that I use at the minute (except for a odd spray off Batiste).  It is quite lightweight despite having Shea Butter and Coconut Oil in it’s ingredients. I like to let my hair dry naturally and scrunch this into the end of my curls. It also works great as a frizz tamer.

Proving itself to be a very versatile product this also works brilliantly if you mix a couple of pumps in with your conditioner and use it as an intensive mask.

The full Organix range can be found at Boots where the Shampoo (link) costs £5.99 and the Serum costs £6.99

Monday, 9 April 2012

Yet Another Boots Haul…





I need banning from Boots. A trip in for eyeliner turned into all this! Review/Swatches coming soon!

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Introducing the Montagne Jeunesse Skin Heroes Range

Montagne Jennesse Skin Heroes Range

I hope your all having a great long weekend! I always make the time to give myself a bit of a pamper during a long weekend. Montagne Jeunesse have recently launched their ‘Skin Heroes’ range which includes facial masks (all of which include a moisturiser or serum) and pore strips.

Each product is targeted to a specific skin concern, and like all Montagne Jeunesse products they are vegetarian friendly and BUAV approved.

I’ll be trying these out and giving some more detailed posts on each product so keep an eye out for them!

The Skin Heroes range is available at Asda and Montagne Jeunesse website (link) and cost £1.49 each.

Disclosure: Products provided by PR for consideration.

Friday, 6 April 2012

French Pharmacy Skincare: Avene Extremely Gentle Cleanser

Avene Extremely Gentle Cleanser

Avene Extremely Gentle Cleanser is as the name would suggest a very gentle cleanser for sensitive and reactive skin. My skin is very sensitive and will flare up at the smallest thing. During a bad patch with my skin last month, even my beloved Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish was breaking me out so I needed to try something new. I picked this up from Boots when it was on 3 for 2 and have used it for just over a month now.

This cleanser doesn’t make any ridiculous claims, it just cleanses the skin really well without irritation. The texture is somewhere between a milk and a gel and it doesn’t foam. I use this after I remove my make up with a Micellar Water, but I have used just this, and it removes make up effectively, including mascara. The bottle says too tissue this off but I prefer to use a damp muslin cloth.

It is perfect for sensitive skin, it has no scent, and I haven’t had any bad reactions to it.

This leaves my skin feeling really clean but not stripped or uncomfortable. I love this because it does what it is supposed do, cleanse your skin, it wont give you perfect skin, but it’s a great staple for your skincare routines.

Avene Extremely Gentle Cleanser costs £8.00 and is avaliable from Boots or Escentual

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Lush Catastrophe Cosmetic

Lush Catastrophe Cosmetic Face Mask

I haven’t been in Lush since my massive haul in the Christmas sale, because I didn’t really need anything, my Lush drawer was full! When I finally ran out of Bath Ballistics and Bubble Bars I popped in to get a Comforter Bubble Bar (one of my faves as you can get at least 3 baths out of them) and after hearing Estee from essiebutton rave about the Catastrophe Cosmetic Mask, I had to get one as well!

Lush’s Fresh Face Masks cost £5.75 and need to be kept in the fridge. These keep for about a month, so I am always quite generous when I use them so I don’t waste any, and I get about 5 masks from one tub.

It feels very gentle on the skin, and after leaving it on for about 10 – 15 minutes I rinse it off and my skin feels soothed and a lot softer. It helps calm the redness I get on my cheeks, and I feel it does help calm down breakouts and spots. It has quite a light scent, it smells sort of like Parma Violet sweets!

I think I will be trying either the Oatifix or Brazened Honey Mask next, if you do try one of these make sure you hang on to the pots as Lush will give you a free mask for every five empty clean tubs you bring them!

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

March Favourites

March Favourites Bourjois Vichy Vivo

I’ve tried lots of new products this month, and most of them have worked pretty well for me. I‘ve ditched a lot of products that just weren’t doing anything for and I’ve cancelled all my beauty box subscriptions! I’m trying to stick to the brands that are working for me, and I’ve got a lot of reviews coming up soon!

Vivo Brow Kit (£5.00 ~ Tesco) I don’t think I could sing this products praises enough, for the money it’s brilliant and I will not be trying any other brow powders. I am currently using both the cool dark shade to fill in my brows, and the pale shade to add texture. They work great wet or dry, and I love applying them with my Japonesque Angled Brow Brush.

Avene Cleanance K (£10.50 ~ Boots/ Cleanance K is an exfoliating gel, that uses AHA’s and BHA’s to exfoliate the skin. I use this once a day, usually at night, and after using this for about 3 weeks, my skin is a lot clearer. I currently only have one blemish, which is pretty much unheard of. This is helping slightly in getting rid of the acne scarring left from previous breakouts, but it is still my main skin concern.

Vichy Normaderm Micellar Solution (£11.50 ~ Boots) I love this for removing make up. It’s so quick, and perfect for when I get home from work and just want to wipe away the day!

Organix Nourishing Coconut Milk Anti Breakage Serum (£5.99 ~ Boots) This is silicone free, and makes my hair feel really soft and healthy. I apply it to ends everyday, and have also mixed it with conditioner for an intensive treatment. It’s such good value (especially when compared to other hair oils) and smells amazing!

Maybelline Color Tattoo On and On Bronze (£4.99  ~ Superdrug) I use this as a base for my Naked Palette, and it works brilliant for me.I have had no problems with creasing. The colour is so beautiful.

Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum Foundation (£10.99 ~ Boots/Superdrug)  I’ve been enjoying using this gel foundation, it’s so easy to blend and lasts really well on my skin. I could live without the scent, but the finish and longevity still make it a favourite.

Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua (£31.00 Boots) A very expensive favourite, but another gorgeous foundation if you want to splurge! Great for oily skin, as it’s water based, and not at all heavy.

What are your favourites this month?

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Boots Haul

Bourjois L'Oreal Revlon Colorstay Healthy Mis Foundation Haul

My bank balance hates Boots. The endless 3 for 2 offers really draw me in, and I can’t help but splurge! Since my EL Double Wear started breaking me out I’ve become foundation obsessed, I must have bought at least five in the past few months. Mad!

The Bourjois 123 Perfect Foundation(£10.99) has had mixed reviews, but I really wanted to try it out, it claims to have 3 colour correcting pigments, which combat dark circles, redness and a dull complexion.

I had also wanted to get the Flower Perfection foundation but they had sold out of my shade, and as I needed a fuller coverage foundation for those days when I wish I could use Double Wear, I picked up L’Oreal Infallible(£12.29). I’m sure I have used this before, when I was about 14, and promptly forgot about it and moved on to something else. The colour matches really well, although I would prefer if it was so pink toned.

My MAC Mineralize Skinfinish is finally almost gone, so I decided to try the Revlon Color  Stay Powder (£10.99), I haven’t heard anything about this, but it seems okay so far!

If you want to see reviews of any of these in particular let me know and I will try to get them up as soon as possible!