Wednesday 31 July 2013

Premae Harmony Balm - Product of the Week

When I get sample sizes of things I usually put them in my make-up or wash bag to use when I'm away from home. That way they don't take up too much space and I get to try that one thing out for a continued period of time rather than trying out lots of different things at once. Premae's Harmony Balm was in my washbag for a recent visit to Norfolk and was the only facial moisturiser I took with me.

It is not only a lovely moisturiser but a fantastic primer for make-up or perfect if you are going for bare skin reducing oil and redness and giving a really silky finish. I was surprised how in love with this I was. When my spending ban is over I shall definitely be buying a full sized version of this.

Friday 26 July 2013

Blue Liner - Friday Video

I always wear black eyeliner so the other day I was brave and went for blue instead... You don't have to use as many blues as I did and it's also a great look for those of you who hate using brushes most of this can be done without.

Products used:

NARS Sheer Glow in Santa Fey
Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in 03
Make Up For Ever Aqua Cream in 13
Sleek Oh So Special Palette
Zao Pearly Eye Shadow in 104
Eyeko Skinny Liner in Navy Blue
Barry M Supersoft Pencil in No 4
Inika pencil in 08 Peacock Blue
Rimmel Scadal'eyes
Cover FX Setting Powder in Light
Illamasqua Cream Pigment in Hollow
Maybelline Dreamtouch Blush
Lancome L'absolu rouge in 66
Real Techniques brushes


Wednesday 24 July 2013

Dermaviduals Soothing Toner - Product of the Week

For mainly hormonal but partly heat related issues I've been a bit spotty this week and my Dermaviduals Soothing toner has been really helping it all calm down. The weather in London has been so humid and sticky that your face feels grubby by the end of the day whatever you've been doing so do properly look after it in the evening feels even more necessary than usual - I love this toner.

Monday 22 July 2013

Emma Hardie Amazing Face Cleansing Balm

A couple of weeks ago I had the Emma Hardie Cleansing Balm as my Product of the Week and it may well have to be my product of the year (yes yes I know we're only in July... ) as I am totally in love with and very evangelical about it.

I heard about the Amazing Face Cleansing Balm through the wondrous Caroline Hirons of BeautyMouth fame who recommends balm cleansers if only because they make you actually wash your face rather than naffing around with cotton pads and never actually cleaning it properly. This made sense to me and as 30 looms and the baby continues to be well behaved but exhausting nonetheless, I thought maybe it was time to kick my skincare routine up a notch. No more scrubbing away with Bioderma Crealine Micelle Solution and slapping on any old moisturiser I'd been sent. Well that still happens but there are now so many more stages in-between involving toners, face oils, serums and most gloriously of all... the Amazing Face Moringa Cleansing Balm.

Emma Hardie Amazing Face Moringa Cleansing Balm
Love the packaging but cracks already beginning to show
First off though I would like to say that the lid on mine has cracked and broken and that is incredibly annoying as little bits fall off all the time and sometimes it's hard to get the lid off but I DON'T CARE really because what is in the pot is so lovely. I just felt I should mention it in case that's the kind of thing that's going to piss you off... (UPDATE 2017 - they've changed the packaging and this is no longer a problem)

This cleanser is recommended for mature skin and although I don't have that yet it's also great for sensitive skin which I do have in some places and it's not at all harsh so there's really no harm in using this on younger skin. The texture is absolutely gorgeous, especially if you have dry or dehydrated skin, you can feel it moisturising, so I leave it on for as long as possible - applying it after removing most of my make-up with Bioderma Crealine Micelle Solution and washing it off last thing before I get out of the bath. If, however, you only want to cleanse once this will get your make-up off which is pretty wonderful.


Friday 19 July 2013

Eyebrow Blocking - Friday Video

The trend for big, natural eyebrows may be ongoing but in case you fancy changing it up here's a video on how to block them out completely! Great for creative make-up, fancy dress and face painting.

MAC Full Coverage


Thursday 18 July 2013

Spending Ban

I am on a self-imposed product buying ban. We are thinking about moving at the beginning of next year and it has been brought to my attention that our bathroom is heaving with beauty and make-up stuff and I really don't need to be buying anymore. So I thought I'd share with you my bathroom cabinet and a few of the things in it. Bear in mind this is just the front row of things - there are about five rows in most places. And I have two big plastic boxes of other things and none of this is make-up... please excuse my terrible writing...


Wednesday 17 July 2013

Revlon Nail Enamel in One Perfect Coral - Product of the Week

I only wore Butter London nail varnish last year as I was pregnant and it's free from any nasties. The colours are lovely but for summer One Perfect Coral by Revlon is my go-to nail varnish for my toes and it's great to have it back on. Long lasting, easy to apply and the perfect mix of orange, pink and red.

Monday 15 July 2013


A while ago Darphin's Intral Toner was my Product of the Week and I confessed to not really know what a toner should be doing and why you should use one. Cue me doing lots of research into toners, their uses and ingredients.

The term 'toner' now seems to cover a lot of products that actually do different things. The skin has an acid mantle of sweat andoils that you produce naturally. A cleanser will strip these away and change the pH balance. A little oil is a good thing as the acids prevent bacteria build up but a good toner will keep very oily skin in check. The delicate balance of the oils in the skin means normal soap is usually too harsh for the softer skin on your face. So a routine of using the right cleansers, toners and moisturisers is better than scrubbing away with soap everyday.

Life is dehydrating - heating, air conditioners, smoke, traffic all dry the skin out. A good toner can re-balance the skin after cleansing, reduce the penetration of impurities and environmental contaminants to the skin, gently exfoliate without using any harsh grains, hydrate the skin by attracting moisture from the air and help your moisturiser absorb into the skin. Traditional toners soothe while the more astringent toners tighten the skin and remove oil. Refreshing toners tighten the skin and are usually alcohol free, balancing the pH of the skin after cleansing. Though it's worth mentioning the skin would normally do this naturally after half an hour or so.

Your toners should contain a humectant (for example glycerin) to attract and keep moisture. Astringent toners with a high proportion of alcohol (20-60%) are good for oily skin. Alcohol is alright in toners if they are concentrated by glycerin. It's the alcohol in a toner which makes your skin feel tight after use.

Anything using AHA's (alpha hydroxy acid) must have a warning on it as it makes your skin more sensitive to the sun but actually glycolic is the only one that has this effect. Of course really you should always use an SPF when going out in the sun.
Ingredients to look out for:
  • Glycolic or alpha hydroxy acids loosen excess accumulation of dead skin and exfoliates.
  • Witch-hazel tones and firms.
  • Ginseng naturally supplies the skin with oxygen.
  • Pineapple is an anti-inflamatory 
  • Papaya extract hydrates
  • Alpine herbs soften and plump the skin
  • Salicylic acid causes the skin cells to shed more easily.
  • Peony flower extract or royal jelly are good for moisture in toners.
Some of my favourite toners are the First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads, Pixi Glow Tonic and Environ AVST toner for when I need something really basic.

Wednesday 10 July 2013

Collection Way-to-Glow Shimmer Shades - Product of the Week

Perfect for adding a bit of shimmering bronze to your cheek bones and high points now that summer is finally here. Way-to-Glow is a great quad of colours that add subtle, highlighted colour without making you dirty or orange. Add to the top of cheek bones and high points of brow for a summery shimmer. Loved it two years ago - my original review is here.

Monday 8 July 2013

Redken Colour Extend

Colour Extend from Redken is the one shampoo and conditioner that consistently keeps my hair looking bright, smooth and non-frizzy. I've been using it for the past 8 months - a recommendation from my colourist as reasonably priced alternative to Kerastase and I will continue to use it for the foreseeable future.

With most shampoos and conditioners I've used, even the expensive ones,  I find I see and feel the benefit for the first week or so and then the frizzy, fried look returns and I need to use other treatments to keep it in reasonable condition. I've also been using less and less of the L'Oreal Expert Silver shampoo - my go-to product for keeping my blonde as white as possible a month or so after having my colour done.

At £12.50 for the shampoo and £13.75 for the conditioner it's hardly bank-breaking for haircare products that really work and will last you two months or so depending on how often you wash your hair. And often you can find a deal where you can buy both for about £20 - has a great deal at the moment.

What you need to know - Redken Colour Extend
  • £9-£15 per product 
  • For coloured hair
  • Shampoo, Condtioner, Mask and Radiance treatment available
  • Available in the UK from Look Fantastic, Feel Unique

Friday 5 July 2013

Nightime Routine - Friday Video

I have to say my night time routine changes quite a lot - I always seem to be trying out new things but this is it at the moment...

Products used:

Bioderma Crealine TS H2O Micelle Solution 500ml
Emma Hardie Amazing Face Cleansing Balm
Liz Earle Instant Boost Skin Tonic
Liz Earle Superskin Concentrate
Yu-be Moisturiser

Thursday 4 July 2013

Clinique Chubby Sticks for Eyes

Whopping Willow
If I was a bit so-so about Clinique's Chubby Stick Lip Colours then I am totally in love with the Chubby Sticks for Eyes. OK so I've only tried one colour but what a colour and what a lovely product.

The colour: Whopping Willow - almost green almost taupe almost bronze. Fantastic for day-to-night, quick and easy smokey eyes and bringing out green and blue eye colours. Can be built up in intensity or blended out to be a simple wash. Available in 12 colours from beige to plum via lilac and green.

The product: a chunky crayon with rounded/pointed end for incredibly easy application. You twist up from the bottom and can apply directly to the lid and blend with your finger or use a brush. It will last all day.

The price: £16 for 3g of colour. Not the cheapest out there but if they have the colour you love this is a lovely product an well worth a little splurge.

Very hard to get an accurate swatch of this colour


Wednesday 3 July 2013

Emma Hardie Cleansing Balm - Product of the Week

This product makes me want to sing Beyonce's Irreplaceable to all my other cleansers... it is my desert island cleanser, my newest love and my biggest recommendation of the year so far. Can't really say more than that! Full review soon


Monday 1 July 2013


Here's a little vlog about my experience of the IMATS. I really love going to the IMATS but as with everything there's always someone that has to spoil it a little. I don't mean to single out MAC here they weren't the only ones at fault but I had to reshoot this video 100 times...

Also people being a bit bitchy is nothing on have an expensive make-up case stolen which is what happened to one stand on the Sunday. Still completely outraged by that behaviour.
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