Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Monthly Favourites | July 2014

Picking my July favourites was super easy this month as there were so many stand out things that I have been completely obsessed with! A couple of things you may notice popped up in my recent Selfridges haul I'll leave the link in case you fancy checking that post out. But now lets get on to those favourites!

YSL Rosy Coral Lipstick.
I thought I'd start with my two most cherished, rather luxurious favourites this month and one of them is my first ever YSL lipstick. I've written a full review of this lipstick here but basically this is the one lipstick that has been on my lips throughout the entire month of July. It is so stunning, so summery and it feels kind of special to own such a beautiful high end lipstick. I would definitely recommend this lipstick to the brighter pinky coral lovers out there as this will not disappoint.

Jo Malone English Pear & Freesia Cologne.
My second luxurious item that I have adored this month is from Jo Malone. You may have heard me say before on my blog how I obssess over perfume and fragrances, its my next biggest 'thing' after lipstick and well discovering Jo Malone in July has probably just about changed my life. I know that's slightly dramatic but there is something about this brand that is so special and indulgent, and well I love a bit of indulgence so there you go... English Pear and Freesia is like nothing I've smelt before, I'm not going to dictate the notes to you as you can find them easily online but it's very uncomplicated in the way it smells how it says it should. There is a fruity sweetness from the pear intertwined with that floral rush from the freesia. Its so beautiful and I will for sure be buying the 100ml version when this is finished.

EcoTools Blush Brush.
I was sorting out my bedroom a little while ago and I came across this brush from EcoTools which I bought ages ago and had completely forgotten about. I've been using this brush instead of my Real Techniques one ever since and I really like how it applies blush. As you can see its a fairly large brush for blusher to be honest but it really works. Its similar to the RT blush brush in the sense that it is very soft to the touch but I think that the difference in the shape of the bristles gives for a really lovely application of product. With a light hand this distributes the blush in a really effortless and natural way while still making it look as though you are wearing a little bit of product on your cheeks. I also like the way the handle feels which I think is made from bamboo.

MAC Woodwinked Eyeshadow.
As you can see I'm half way towards filling my second MAC quad, on the bottom left there is Woodwinked my latest shadow from Mac and its easily become one of my favourites already. In the pan it looks kind of brown I'd say but its actually a very beautiful bronzy golden colour which has been so, so perfect for summer makeup looks. My go to look lately has been this on my eyes with the YSL lipstick and together they look amazing, definitely love that pairing.

VO5 Plump It Up Dry Backcombing Spray.
Now you will rarely see hair products in favourites posts or probably at all on my blog as I am the laziest, low key girl with my hair ever - I am so clueless when it comes to hair and styling. (Definitely a result of being spoilt as a child as my mum always used to do my hair in beautiful plaits and pig-tails and now I'm bloody useless with it.) which is why I find this product so handy. It's very straight forward I simply spray this into the roots to add some volume and lift to my hair, I don't use it to backcomb as the tin suggest. This has the same effect as a dry shampoo without the nasty white tinge and awful smell and I've just found it a nice addition to give my hair a bit of texture with minimal styling required!

The Body Shop Vitamin E Moisture Lotion SPF 15.
With the weather once and for all improving and becoming considerably nicer here in England I thought it was time to invest in a moisturiser with a bit of SPF to protect my face. I got this Moisture lotion from TBS in a 3 for 2 deal and I've really liked using it: its lightweight, non-greasy but still gives my skin that moisture it needs all the while giving me some protection from sun damage as it does contain SPF 15. Plus it hasn't broke me out like some moisturisers seem to so that's always a bonus.

Maybelline Super Stay Gel Colour in Berry Stain.
If you read my recent Manicure Monday post you may be surprised to see this in my favourites this month as I was quite let down from the Maybelline super stay line of gel nail colours. The hype around these being really long lasting sucked me in and sadly left me rather disappointed, I certainly don't get the 7 day wear time it's meant to give however I do still like the way they look when they are on and this shade in Berry Stain is simply gorgeous. The colour reminds me of summer berries and I've got lots of clothes in similar colours so it seems to go well with a lot of what I wear.

What were your favourites in July? 

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

The British Tag

Kingston Lacy, Dorset.
Hey I've got a new Tag post today created by Sammi aka BeautyCrush on YouTube which I thought was another fun one to do as it's all about being British. Its really been interesting to see everyone's take on this and what it sort of means to them to be British. So here we go then - oh and the rule of the tag is you must drink a cup of tea while doing it so I've got my mug of green tea by me as I type!

1) How many cups of tea do you have a day? And how many sugars?
I love tea a lot and in our household we make tea with loose tea in a pot rather than with tea bags. I would say that I drink on average three to four standard cups of tea not including green tea but this definitely increases in the winter! I have a little bit of milk and recently stopped taking my tea with sugar as it was one of my new years resolution of 2014! My family also drink their tea in cups and saucers which I think is a really British thing to do but I haven't quite gotten in to that tradition yet as I do rather like my Cath Kidston mug for now.

2) Favourite part of your roast?
Oh this ones difficult to pick! I love all of my roast dinner but I'd probably have to pick between Yorkshire puddings and roast potatoes... Although I haven't always been a lover of roast potatoes so maybe I ought to pick the Yorkshires. Only if they are home made ones though of course. Well I think everything in a roast should be home made personally. But yeah Yorkshire puddings with gravy swimming in the middle is probably the ultimate part of a roast as you don't really ever eat them with any other meal. My mum's Yorkshire puddings are incredible, I have about four of them no joke!

3) Favourite dunking biscuit?
Again I this is a tough one. As a child I was a huge dunker. 'Dunky biscuits' was my favourite thing and for years and years on Wednesday and Sunday mornings I would get in the middle of my parents bed and have my 'dunky biscuits' with them. I don't really dunk biscuits these days but the ones that I remember always liking were Custard Creams and Bourbons. Although sometimes we would get like 'best' biscuits from Marks and Spencer for special occasions and I was a huge fan of dunking those as well.

4) Favourite quintessentially British pastime?
A few things pop to mind for this one like walks in the country or going to the seaside for fish and chips but I think the number one British pastime for me has to be visiting historic houses and buildings. I've done a lot of looking round National Trust properties over the years and I think that is such a British thing. Nothing quite says Britain like an elegant country home surrounded by acres of land and lots of pretty rose gardens. I think its so fascinating and I'm always mesmerised by how days spent like that would feel like you were stepping back in time and getting a taste for how life was in England back then.

5) Favourite word?
Posh. And putting on a posh accent when saying the word posh.

6)  Cockney Rhyme slang?
I don't really know any cockney slang and I'd literally have to google something to write for this answer :p Whenever we would cover it in English I'd always be utterly clueless.

7) Favourite Sweet?
My favourite sweets are probably Smarties, I've always loved a good old packet of Smarties - especially the orange ones were my favourite. Although an honourable shoutout has to go to Sherbet Lemons, I remember how everyone my age got into having Sherbet Lemons when Harry Potter became popular.

8) What would your pub be called?
I think I'd have to be oh so original here and go with something to do with Blossom as you get like quite a lot of pubs to do with trees and flowers such as 'The Royal Oak' or 'The Rose Inn' so it would probably have to be called something like 'The Blossom Tree' haha.

 9) No 1 British person.
This is kind of a bit of a cheat answer because I have a few... its got to be between William and Kate as I loved all of the Royal Wedding and Jubilee celebrations a few years ago as everywhere seemed to be decorated with cute British flag bunting. Although I think David Beckham has got to be like the most amazing British person, it doesn't even need explain he just is awesome.

10) Favourite shop/ restaurant.
Some of my favourite British shops would probably be Boots, Cath Kidston and obviously I have to mention Selfridges now that I have been because it was absolutely incredible and I want to go back now! As for favourite restaurant I'm actually much more of a pub meal kind of girl, we go to a couple of local pubs that do amazing food thats all fresh and locally sourced so I don't think you can beat that, plus going to the pub is such a British thing as well isn't it?

11) What British song pops into your head?
Spice Girls - Wannabe. So 90's Britain haha.

12? Marmite.

I hope you enjoyed the post - feel free to share your post if you've completed this tag too!

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Brow Bravery: Baby Steps Towards Better Brows?

Hello, I'm here chatting brows today on the blog as everyone seems to love a good old brow discussion don't they? Last week I stepped outside my comfort zone and got something done about my eyebrows for the very first time. It wasn't until last autumn that I even begun paying them any attention at all... I know right, but don't panic as luckily for me my natural brows aren't too bad - I got away for 22 years without receiving any funny looks lets put it that way. My eyebrows are not exactly sparse but certainly not thick enough to be deemed bushy, although all those years of neglect had begun to make them a little unruly. Sure I would pick up the tweezers every now and then for the odd stray hair but I honestly had no idea how to make them look better or dare I say it good.
So as you can expect it got to a point very recently and I decided that I wanted to invest in a decent brow product to end my brows unruly ways once and for all. Cue Vivianna Does Makeup's Brow 101 video and I finally decided that yes, eyebrow threading is the way for me to go first of all - her brows look incredible and plus I'd heard lots of other people talk positively about their experience of threading. I definitely recommend giving the video a watch, if purely to see such an amazing brow journey. Now I wouldn't go as far as to call my experience with eyebrows a journey ... more like baby steps perhaps?
Anyway obviously I was too much of a baby to get it done alone so dragged persuaded my friend along with me so we could lose our eyebrow threading virginity together. Thank goodness we left the brows until the end of our shop around Bluewater on Friday - shout out to the lovely red strips along our foreheads! We went to a place called Malika which is like a mini beauty salon type thing - I did not fancy going to one of those open brow bars and being a source of entertainment to all the shoppers passing by! Right before the lady begun I had a mini panic to myself, I was wondering what I'd let myself in for or that I wouldn't like what she was about to do all the while trying to tell myself to be brave.
The treatment itself was pretty quick and harmless in my opinion, my friend said her eyes watered the entire time she had hers done but I thought that the feeling was more one of discomfort as apposed to feeling painful. It felt abit like taking a bit of string across your arm and tugging it against the direction of the hairs. Even through the initial redness of the skin around my eyebrows I could appreciate how effective the threading had been. For the first time I had defined eyebrows with a clear shape to them without all the untidy unruly hairs getting in the way of things.
I was so happy with the result and it honestly feels like I have a brand new set of brows on my face (once the redness disappeared after a few hours that is!) I will definitely be getting this done again! As for now in my baby steps towards better brows I am on the lookout for that holy grail brow product. Do I stay high street or dive straight in to high end beauty brands?
QOTD: Have you ever had your eyebrows threaded?

Saturday, 26 July 2014

Real Techniques Marvellous Mini Brush Trio Review

Are these just the cutest makeup brushes you've ever clapped your eyes on or what? Relatively new in to the Real Techniques line is this marvellous mini trio of brushes. Now I should probably begin by adding that I am a complete sucker for anything 'mini' - just say the word miniature and I'm pretty much sold. However don't be fooled into thinking that I didn't give these brushes a fair trial before writing this post because I was actually a little sceptical about these when I first looked at them in the packet. My first thoughts were that these looked too tiny to grip and apply makeup with properly. Some miniature products are just gimmicky versions of the real things and I hoped and prayed that it wouldn't be the same for these little cuties. Let me say now that I should have known better than to question RT, after all they haven't failed us yet have they ladies? I am besotted with this trio. So lets talk about these in a bit more detail shall we.

So I thought I'd start off by actually talking about the size of them because that is what is so unique and different about this trio after all. They really are pretty small compared to your standard RT brush, I've included this picture above as it compares just how tiny these brushes are as they sit neatly in the palm of my hand. As I mentioned before, my initial concern was that these would be a little too small to actually work with, however they still feel really comfortable to work with as the actual piece that you hold is a decent enough size to manage all your tasks with - they don't feel like they are slipping out your hand or anything like that.

The set includes a mini face brush, a mini foundation brush and a mini shading brush however as with all RT brushes, their functions really can be very multi purpose. Now I think that the idea of these little brushes is to provide a neat and compact alternative to your everyday brushes for the avid travellers out there. As we all know, makeup brushes can take up quite a lot of space in your makeup bags - but alas not these. Not only are these miniatures obviously shorter than your normal brush but the bristles are also more closely packed together meaning that these fit perfectly in a makeup bag without bulking it up like a conventional brush would. Somehow these brushes are shorter and more compact but still manage to perform their jobs brilliantly.

With my upcoming holiday in mind and for the sake of this review I wanted to find out: can I get by using just these three brushes? And by that I mean would this trio cover you brush wise for the duration of say a weeks holiday? My honest opinion is that if you wanted to be quite minimal with your makeup and brush packing, that this trio is an awesome addition to have. I know that when I go away in September I have a 15kg allowance so I have to go fairly easy on the amount I'm taking and I know that these are going to be amazing!

Firstly, the face brush (the pink one) is quite literally like the baby version of our beloved expert face brush. The bristles are quite dense meaning that you can use this to apply your liquid foundation with and it will give you excellent coverage. This blends foundation like a dream and produces a flawless finish. The expert face brush is my favourite brush to apply foundation with, and so having a cute mini version of it is so awesome. But this mini face brush can also do so much more, for example I have been using this to apply powder and blush with too - its actually a really good size for blush as it glides excellently against the apples of your cheek. Perfect.

The mini foundation brush is great for applying concealer and highlighter, I think out of the three this one is my least favourite and the least multifunctional brush. To be honest the only thing I would use this for would be to highlight the underneath of my eye or my brow bone, however its still quite a necessary job and I'm glad its part of the set. Last but not least we have the tiniest brush of the three and that is the mini shading brush. I think I actually prefer the mini version of this to the full size, the bristles are quite dense but still fluffy so you can get away with using this to both pack on shadow and also blend it out. Other things you could use this brush for would be to cover little blemishes with concealer and also if push came to shove it could probably be used on the lips too to apply lipstick! Talk about multifunctional products ?

 Here the brushes are lined up next to their big sisters - aren't they just so cute?! As you can see they are very similar in shape but just on a much smaller scale. I know that the mini face brush is supposedly the smaller version of the expert face brush but I also think it is similar in shape to the multi-task brush in the way it subtly tapers round the sides, plus they are both pink!

Overall I am completely in love with this mini trio, they are cute but most importantly they deliver that excellent standard that we have learned to expect from the Real Techniques brand. If you really wanted to be minimal on packing you could totally get away with just these three brushes in your makeup bag for a holiday. To be honest I doubt I will really take too many more brushes on my holiday when I go away as these do serve a whole array of purposes and will also save me a hell of a lot of space! And if you're not going on holiday I think these would make a perfect addition to keep in your everyday makeup bag for touch ups on the go.

Once again, nice job Real Techniques!

Will you be trying this set from RT? What are your thoughts on 'mini' brushes?

Monday, 21 July 2014

Products I've Used Up | Empties #3


It was only when I was giving my bedroom a good tidy up last week that I noticed how full my bag of empties had become, and knew I would be doing another empties post before long. There is definitely something satisfying about seeing all your empty products accumulate as you know that you've been using things up and getting your full moneys worth. Here's a brief run through of my latest empties, you can catch my previous two here and here.
Marc Jacobs Dot 50ml.
Out of all the Marc Jacob's perfumes I would say that Dot is my least favourite, and honestly when it was released I think I was more swayed with the cute polka dot bottle more than anything else. Its just not what I would ever call one of my favourite scents, its nice but there are a lot nicer options out there. I probably wouldn't repurchase Dot again.
Soap & Glory Butter Yourself 300ml.
I liked this body butter especially now during the summer months, (full review here) however I'm glad that I've used this up as its not something I would have reached for at any other time of the year purely because it smells so fruity and exotic. I probably wouldn't repurchase this or at least not for a while just because I've recently stocked up on Body Shop body butters in their summer sale.
Soap & Glory Righteous Butter 50ml.
You can tell I've been trying to keep my skin well moisturised as here is another body butter from S&G this time a little travel sized pot of their Righteous Butter. This probably has to be my favourite body butter from S&G. I've used up so many full sized and travel sized pots of these.
Boots Conditioning Nail Polish Remover.
Batiste Dry Shampoo.
Urban Decay Primer Potion Sample in Sin.
This sample came with my UD Naked 3 Palette and I absolutely hated it, it was so metallic and made my eyelid look all shiny and oily.
The Body Shop Vitamin E Sink In Moisture Mask sample.
Sadly this was another sample that I wasn't overally impressed by. I found it way too greasy and I felt like it left my face looking a bit sweaty and just not very nice.
John Frieda Everlasting Blonde shampoo and conditioner.
I love John Frieda products and this combo has to be my favourite when it comes to washing my hair. It always makes my hair look freshly coloured and vibrant but I don't feel like it strips it of any goodness. Whenever I use these together my hair looks bright and healthy. I'm always repurchasing these two products.
The Body Shop Grapefruit Shower Gel.
This shower gel was featured in a small haul a few months ago and I really wanted to love this because it smells divine - just like summer in a bottle -however it flared my eczema up on my arms (I suffer from sensitive skin here) and I was so uncomfortable that once I figured out what had upset it I had to let my parents finish off the quater of the bottle I couldn't manage.
Garnier Soothing Eye Makeup Remover.
This is another product that I have been through absolutely bottles of as it has been my go-to eyemakeup remover over the years. This is really affordable and does exactly what it says on the bottle.

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

YSL Rouge Pur Couture Lipstick | Rosy Coral

If you caught my recent Selfridges haul you may have already seen that I picked up several cheeky purchases with my birthday money including my first ever Yves Saint Laurent items. I am going to be talking about this stunning lipstick which is part of the Rouge Pur Couture line of YSL lipsticks. Now if you've been reading my blog for a while you will probably know that I'm a bit of a die hard Mac lipstick lover - they are great quality lipsticks for a fraction of the price of some of the more higher end beauty brands. But as much as I love my Mac lippys, I can't deny that the lure of having a new luxury lipstick in my collection has been rather hard to resist of late.
And so I felt that it was time to invest in my first ever YSL lipstick. Although I'm partial to many a bright shade of lipstick (reds, hot pinks, purples, bright oranges to name a few) I definitely think that I have worked out in my mind what I like my every day shade of lipstick to be. I've long since decided that nudes don't work for me, nor do some pale shades of pink compliment my skin tone. However a pinky coral coloured lip has become the perfect staple for my day to day look. When choosing my YSL lipstick I knew I wanted to get a shade that I would get a lot of wear out of otherwise I would be spending a lot of money on a lipstick that would end up sitting there unused. Cue YSL 52 Rosy Coral.
Before investing in a YSL lipstick I of course did a little bit of research before hand and Rosy Coral has been a popular choice among the beauty loving world, and well you can see exactly why can't you? Everything from the exquisite square shaped gold packaging to the stunning quality product has had me head over heels in love. The name Rosy Coral really couldn't be more accurate if you ask me, as this is a stunning splash of bright rosy pink in amongst a vibrant dash of coral. On the lips this will brighten up your entire face and is guaranteed to get you many a compliment - every time I've worn it someone has complimented that my lipstick looked nice, which is always a morale booster right?
The formula of the lipstick is creamy and luxurious, with a really lovely rose scent too. You only need to apply one layer to get a stunning colour pay off, however I would say that to get the best and longest wear time out of this lipstick you should ever so gently blot the first layer. I find that this helps stain my lips with the colour and then I go over with a lipstick brush to redeem that slight sheen that the creamy texture allows. I've been loving pairing this with a golden eye for a really pretty summery look and can tell this lipstick is going to get plenty of wear.
QOTD - do you own any luxury lipsticks ? What is your favourite lipstick brand?

Monday, 14 July 2014

Manicure Monday: Maybelline Uptown Blue

I consider myself pretty lucky that I've never really been one to succumb to peer pressure. However when there is a hype around a product I do feel compelled to find out for myself what its all about... The latest hype to lure me to Boots (as if I need an excuse) is the Maybelline Super Stay 7 Day Gel Colours. I've seen loads of people loving these from Maybelline recently and claiming that they really do live up to the '7 days' claim. Now chips in nail varnish are one of my biggest peeves. If I have a chip in my nail varnish it either has to be touched up or all of it taken off. I just hate seeing chipped nails. So of course I was going to check out a product that claimed to give you 7 days of wear time.

I will begin with the positives, the colour range is pretty amazing and there are plenty of summer colours to select from. I wouldn't usually pick up blue nail varnish but Uptown Blue was too beautiful not to pick up. The colour is undeniably gorgeous, its definitely a Cath Kidston kind of girly blue shade. And applied to the nails its super glossy looking and easily looks like you've gone and had your nails done. I was so impressed with this and couldnt stop looking at how pretty my nails were.

However, fast forward just a few hours later and I could already notice little chips beginning to appear, not just on one nail but on a couple of nails. I was so bummed! 7 days? This had barely been on my nails 7 hours! The following morning I refused to accept defeat and tried again this time with a base coat but unfortunately it made no impact and I still had the same result of little chips a few hours later. I was definitely disappointed as I had such high hopes for this product. Someone tell me what the secret is to get this product to last 7 days? What did I do wrong?! The one consolation for me is that the colour really is gorgeous and summery so I can forgive it for not living up to my high hopes... just about..
QOTD: Have you tried these Super Stay gel colours from Maybelline? What did you think of them?

Sunday, 13 July 2014

The Holy Grail Skincare Trio

Skincare is something that is relatively new to me. It wasn't until I started wearing makeup on a regular basis that I realised the benefits of a skincare routine. Because skincare is a bit of a new area to me, I feel like I'm still in a bit of an 'experimenting' stage ie trying out different skincare products that work for me. However there have become three staples in my skincare routine that quickly earned their way to holy grail status. One is a cleanser, one is a mask and the other is a serum. I'm still on the lookout for the perfect moisturiser, so feel free to leave me any recommendations!

1) The Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil.
This product from The Body Shop went wild on the beauty blogging scene a couple of months ago, everywhere I looked this bad boy was cropping up with rave reviews. Naturally I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. Let me say, the hype around this really is true. This is such an incredible product that I have been obsessed with ever since purchasing it. I use this at night time if I have a face full of makeup as it literally melts away every last scrap off your face. Just massage a pump of this cleansing oil onto dry skin and when you add water it lathers to a slightly milky consistency and simply wipes your makeup away. I am constantly blown away by how easily this removes your makeup. As an extra bonus this is a really affordable high street skincare product setting you back around a tenner I believe, and a tiny bit goes a long way so it will last you ages!
Shop This Product

2) Origins Clear Improvements Active Charcoal Mask.
 The next product in my skincare holy grail trio is this face mask from Origins. I use this mask once or twice a week as a sort of deep cleanse to rid my face of underlying impurities. The active charcoal is the ingredient which unclogs your pores from all the dirt that is beyond what our eyes can see. This isn't the prettiest of face masks when you put it on as you can probably expect from the soot black colour of the tube. Upon rinsing this away you get an initial 'ahh' that feels good to be off as it can become a tad dry and tight on your face and immediately after taking it off your face just feels so clean and fresh. One thing I would bare in mind is that this can bring any underlying spots to life because it is so effective in clearing your pores out,but at the same time that does just go to show how well it works and overall it does leave your skin looking and feeling clearer. You only need a thin layer so again this should last pretty well, I have the 50ml size which I believe retails for around £12 so its not the cheapest but well worth it in my opinion.

3) The Body Shop Vitamin E Overnight Serum-In-Oil.
The third and final installment in my trio is anoher product from The Body Shop, this time from their Vitamin E range. I love the Vitamin E range from TBS, if you've been reading my blog for a while no doubt you will have seen the odd piece from the range show its face from time to time so of course I was instriguied by this serum. Other high end beauty serums will set you back quite a lot of money but this is again an afforable product retailing £12. I use this three to four nights a week over a night cream and the next morning my skin is visibly plumper and revitalised and it solves the problem of any dry patches I might be suffering from. I was a little bit nervous about putting an 'oil' on my face as I invisioned greasiness and oily looking skin as a result however it is not in the least bit greasy. I massage a few drops into my fingers first and then apply to my face in a patting motion as advised by the website. As well as doing its job properly the quality of the packaging feels really luxurious with a glass bottle and pipette applicator. This is going to be a saviour come winter time!
Shop This Product

QOTD: What are your skincare holy grail products?

Friday, 11 July 2014

Fragrance Focus: Jimmy Choo Exotic

You may notice a reoccurring theme on my blog that I rather love my fragrances. This fragrance focus post is dedicated to the limited edition Jimmy Choo Extoic women's perfume. This was released last year in 2013 as a spin off from the original Jimmy Choo for women. Jimmy Choo Exotic supports the same iconic circular bottle and square lid but in an all hot pink shade. The limited edition fragrance has been re released this summer this time in a warm orange bottle, (I actually prefer the 2013 bottle I've got) but apart from the outside appearance it is the same perfume or at least very similar as far as I can tell.

This was my favourite summer fragrance last year so when I saw it was released again this summer I knew I would have to feature it in a fragrance focus post. The perfume itself is definitely more of an evening fragrance as its got a rather sexy and sultry edge to it. Its very warm and yet it also has a fruitiness to it as well which makes it slightly rich. You only need a couple of sprays of this and it will last on the skin for hours. I think that the name exotic is pretty much on the money.

 Perfumes and aromas are especially evocative and whenever I smell this perfume it always reminds me of hot summer evenings. I think that this perfume is definitely the sexiest in my collection and its not something I would usually aim for but I do really love it during the summer months and think its worth a sniff next time you're at a perfume counter. I would also recommend this as a perfect holiday scent - I'm going to buy one of those travel atomisers to fill up with this perfume for my holiday as I wont want to be lugging around this 60ml bottle with me.

What is your favourite evening scent?

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Selfridges Haul

Oh boy am I excited to be bringing you this haul today. Over the weekend I made my first ever visit to Selfridges in London which was absolutely amazing, and lets just say I was definitely #feelingspendy. And so here we are with my first ever Selfridges haul featuring plenty of luxury beauty items that I can't wait to delve into. I was made more aware of Selfridges from the television show Mr Selfridge (which I adore) and then obviously as I got into beauty in the last year its been somewhere I was desperate to visit.

From the second my feet stepped into the store - which conveniently happens to be the ground floor beauty department - I knew I was going to be in my element. Selfridges is unlike anything I had seen before: with its all white halls of cosmetics, where the light seems to shine beautifully off every counter top to proudly show off the extensive array of beauty offerings. I struggled to refrain myself from squealing out loud in pure delight several times, it is truly something else.

I think that MAC was one of the first counters as you come in, and although it was quite an impressively sized counter my local department store has one that I'm always buying from so we didn't spend too long there. Instead my friend and I hit up the nearby YSL counter as we both had our eye on the classic Touche Éclat which is pretty famous in the beauty blogging community to say the least. We each sat in the beauty chair and had the Touche Éclat applied - which instantly illuminated and brightened our faces. Needless to say that we didn't need much convincing, so then when the sales man explained about a current special offer where you receive a free mascara we were both nodding our heads in enthusiasm getting our purses out. The mascara is a Mini Baby Doll Mascara which I can't say I've heard too much about but I'm more than up for giving a new mascara a whirl!
I also picked up a stunning lipstick which is one of the Rouge Pur Couture lipsticks in the shade 52. I will be dedicating an entire post to this purchase very soon so I won't go into it too much, but just look at that dreamy packaging, the same goes to the Touche Éclat, the slick gold packaging is so stunning and light reflecting... just drool worthy to be perfectly honest.

Behind the YSL counter we spotted Nars which was so exciting as there isn't a Nars counter anywhere near us at home. I've been itching to get to a Nars counter for so long now and if you're curious for the reason why? Three words : Sheer Glow Foundation. The foundation I have been going on about wanting for months and months is finally mine! I think that the packaging is so chic, and I know a lot of people moan about the pump/lid issues but I quite like it as it means I can proudly display it on my dresser! My friend and I were so impressed with the MUA at Nars he bloody knew his stuff he was brilliant, just so helpful without being pushy which I think sales people can sometimes come across as. We were talking to him for ages and he was nice enough to throw in a generous sample of the tinted moisturier which is another Nars product I'm hankering after....
 As we were walking through the store a lady grabbed our attention by calling us over to ask if we wanted to try any makeup on, I looked up at the brand name which was Trish McEvoy and it didn't ring any bells to me. Apparently its pretty big in America but over here the only other place its sold is Harvey Nichols. But anyway this woman was pretty enthusiastic about this gel eyeliner she wanted me and my friend to try. To be honest I was a little bit sceptial as I'm not really a huge eyeliner kinda gal but I was willing to give it a go. She put it on my friend first on the inside of her lash line and it defined her eyes and lashes in a way I had never seen before - it looked incredible. I was equally as impressed when it was my turn to sit in the chair and have the liner applied to me. It literally looked like I was wearing false lashes! Stay tuned for a full product review in a few weeks time!

Of course I couldn't avoid MAC altogether and did end up making these two purchases, both of which are eye related. The first product I picked up from Mac was the eyeshadow Woodwinked which is a lovely golden colour. Its been on my Mac eyeshadow wish list for ages but it was only hearing Vivanna Does Makeup talk about it in a recent video that reminded me I needed it in my life. The second and quite exciting purchase was the Mac 239 shading brush, which is another item thats been on my beauty wish list for what feels like forever! The 239 brush is a firm favourite among many bloggers and I haven't really got a decent eyeshadow brush so I'm eager to give it a go!
 And last, but by no means least my friend and I found ourselves at the stunning Jo Malone boutique. Now this was something I was again, very excited about because as you probably know Jo Malone is a brand that has been popping up everywhere on the beauty scene in the last few years. But my local shopping centre is only just getting a Jo Malone store this very week so obviously I'd never had the chance to look at the products (or more importantly smell them) until Sunday in Selfridges. So I was eagerly anticipating my first inhale of Jo Malone scents.
 I thought that the counter was so lovely in the way that all the bottles of fragrances were lined up categorically, 'fruity' 'floral' etc. It could have been a bit overwhelming looking at a new brand that I unfamiliar with which has such an extensive array but this meant that I could easily look at products to suit my own taste and style.
 Soon after we begun sniffing the fragrances and swooning another really helpful lady approached us and we chatted about the products for a bit until she then offered us a hand and arm massage so we could try out some more of the products. Before we knew it we were sat down at these lovely stools being thoroughly pampered. I can't remember now exactly what products the lady used but everything smelt incredible - we had our arms placed up over a white towel where the lady washed and then applied a body cream to them before spraying us with a colonge. It was so relaxing and the lady was so friendly - it was like chatting to an old chum (plus she had a beautiful Irish accent) she mentioned she watched Youtube so we were talking about that for ages as well as all the lovely Jo Malone products.

After spraying many different fragrances on the little Jo Malone tester strips of paper, I decided I could have had them all, but only the small fact that my bank balance probably wouldn't after my spendy day. But I finally settled on my very first Jo Malone colonge which was English Pear & Freesia - a beautiful fresh scent for the rest of the summer.
 As you can imagine, I absoultely loved my first experience shopping in Selfridges - I can't wait to get back there. I really hope you enjoyed the post! QOTD - Have you been to Selfridges?

Rimmel Sun Shimmer Instant Tan


Hey guys, today I'm going to be talking about a tanning product from Rimmel which if you read my blog you may have noticed appeared in my recent June favourites post. This is an instant tanning product so as I explained in my June favourites I picked this product up to basically help rid me of the problem of my milk bottles for legs.
I must admit that I am always a little bit afraid when it comes to tanning products but that is mostly because I'm not really experienced in the 'fake tanning' field. However what reassured me about this product from the tube alone was two things: one was the fact it claims to wash off so if I really did make a cock up I could always jump in the shower and get it sorted. The second thing was that it claims to be 'light' so I was hopeful that I wasn't going to look down at a pair of unnaturally tanned coloured legs after using it.
So do these claims follow through to reality? Well firstly yes this does wash off, so its not going to stain your skin for a long period of time like some tanning products do. Therefore this is a useful product to have for if you're going out and want your legs looking a bit more bronzed but want it to wash out the following day. I also think that this does create a more 'light' looking tan, it does not create that intense 'my skin is so tanned' kind of look however it does add a really lovely colour. My mum commented straight away that my legs looked nice and tanned after using this so it does still make a noticeable difference without being obnoxious if you get what I'm saying.
Other things I wanted to point out about this product is that it doesn't have a nasty fake tan smell to it which is always a bonus, plus there is no waiting around for the tan to show as you do get an instant result from the product. With a few preparation steps beforehand I find it quite an easy product to apply: exfoliate, moisturise, use a mit - we all know the drill right? I think that it gives an even application without streakiness as long as you dont hang around and take too long as it does have a more matte finish to it meaning it can feel somewhat dry which could cause a problem if you haven't had time to blend it yet. So I would advise to start off with a smaller and more manageable amount unless you're really confident with tanning products. All in all I find this an affordable, quick and easy sun-less way of adding some colour to your body.
Have you tried any of Rimmel's tanning products? What do you use to tan?
If you follow me on Instagram you may already know that I took a trip to Selfridges at the weekend so stay tuned for a haul very soon!