Monday, 24 April 2017

Spring/ Summer Beauty Wishlist

There isn't ever a time when I don't have an endless amount of things on my beauty wishlist! I mentioned a few beauty bits on my radar in this post but I wanted to go into more detail about the beauty items I plan on picking up this spring/ summer.

First up I'll go through some skincare. I've heard so many people rave about the Pixi and Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse collaboration, I love the idea of using an oil then going onto a cream cleanser and with it being Caroline that's released it, it's a no brainer that I need it really. When it comes to moisturiser L'Occtaine seem to get it right! I've had my eye on their Pivoine Sublime Perfecting Cream after trying a sample, it's beautifully rich and hydrating without feeling oily or too heavy which will be perfect for the warmer months, I definitely need to purchase a full sized version.

I'm thinking of picking up a few things whilst I'm in duty free before my holiday, one of those being the Kiehls Midnight Recovery Concentrate. I've wanted to try it for ages but the price tag always put me off, so it seems like a bargain to pick it up when I can get 20% off. There's also an Urban Decay stand at duty free, I must have repurchased the Urban Decay All Nighter Spray 6/7 times now, I always notice a different in how long my makeup lasts so it's become an essential part of my routine. However, since hearing about the Quick Fix Hydra Charged Complexion Prep Spray I've decided to pick that up instead as it can be used as a primer and a setting spray, plus I noticed Emmy from EmmysBeautyCave rave about it and that sealed the deal for me.

If you're a regular reader you'll know I've recently become highlighter obsessed, and although I already have a pretty big collection I feel like I need to add the Jouer Highlighter in Rose Quartz into the mix after seeing Gemma mention it the other week, it just looks too beautiful to miss! I can't go through summer without picking up a new scent, my holy grail is without a doubt Jo Malone Peony and Blush Suede and to go with that I want to purchase the Wood Sage and Sea Salt cologne, the two mix perfectly and smell amazing worn alone too.

What's on your radar this Summer?

*This post is in collaboration with L'Occitane* 
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Saturday, 22 April 2017

The Wedding Update #2

Only a year to go... Roll on April 2018. If you missed my previous wedding update you can catch that here, quite a lot has happened since and thankfully my other half has been on the ball and we've managed to get some of the big things booked.

First of all, we have a photographer! Photography was something we really weren't prepared to scrimp and save on and luckily it was pretty easy to find the person for us. We met Tom Calton at the National Wedding Show in Birmingham last year, as soon as we got chatting to him and saw his work we knew we really liked him. His style is very relaxed and the un-staged, documentary style images he takes are just perfect. We're both so pleased to have him booked! I would really recommend going to a National Wedding Show, there are hundreds of suppliers there often with discounts and it's a great way to meet people face to face.

Another exciting update is that I now have bridesmaids! I think dress shopping won't be for another few months, but there is definitely a lot to look forward to, and I'm so glad that the girls finally know. Unfortunatly we've had our first set back. One of my top tips when looking for suppliers is to ask whether their prices include VAT, otherwise you could be stung! From the catering company we thought we were going with we were told a quote without VAT which added on a considerable amount to the overall price which we just weren't willing to pay. Now the hunt begins for a more reasonable catering company - in all honesty, I'm happy to leave the food to Jay to sort!

I'm starting to get super excited about all the little things that need to be planned. I already know who I want to design our invitations and I have some ideas about the flowers, the next big thing is finding me a dress to wear...

If you want to see the kind of style we are going for then I have a pretty big Pinterest board here which sums it up quite nicely.

Over the next year I'm hoping to do even more wedding related content, so if you have anything you are interested in then please feel free to let me know! I feel like from now the countdown really does begin

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Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Affordable Concealer Round Up

I've done a round up of the high end concealers in my collection before, so I thought it was about time I went through the more affordable options in my collection too... If you fancy a concealer bargain then stick around, I would say some of these are just as good as my high end faves!

I apply all concealer under/ around my eyes with a damp beauty blender and I tend to set them all in place with the Laura Mercier Translucent Setting Powder (my holy grail powder), when mentioning how long any of these concealers last on the skin it will be after they have been set with this. I would really recommend using a loose powder to set any concealer, it definitely reduces creasing and improves longevity on the skin.

Everyone knows just how brilliant the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer is, so I won't spend too long on it. The hype seems to have died down over the last year or so but this is definitely a concealer I will continue to repurchase. It's pigmented, creamy and lightweight managing to cover both blemishes and around my eyes really well lasting atleast 7/8 hours. I feel lucky that shade 1 works well for brightening around the eyes and shade 2 is a good match for any blemishes I have, otherwise the shade range is pretty pants! A recent concealer rediscovery has been the Seventeen Phwoarr Paint, possibly the most underrated concealer I own. This is so soft and pigmented and does the best job at covering the darkness in the corners of my eyes and keeping them covered all day/ night long. I tend to warm this up with my finger then gently pat it over the problem area and it covers so well, I don't put this directly under my eyes as I prefer something a little more creamy for that. Again, I have issues with the shade range but fair does seem to work well for me as it has a yellow undertone counteracting the dark blue bags.

A complete dupe for the beloved Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer is the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer. This matches the Nars offering if not beating it for me, it's pigmented, heavy duty yet not quite as drying as the Nars Radiant Creamy making it even better for the under eyes. Annoyingly, I have to say it again, the colour range is shocking and the lightest shade is just about light enough for my under eyes, such a shame because the formulation is perfect. Also this does have a habit of getting stupidly messy around the top of the tube. The packaging and shade range are the only factors that make this obviously a more affordable product. A concealer from Maybelline I don't like quite as much is the Age Rewind Concealer. I think for anyone with dry under eyes needing something a little less heavy duty this will be lovely, however I just don't find it conceals enough for my liking and I don't really understand the sponge applicator. I keep this for the good skin/ had an amazing nights sleep days.

Lastly is the L'Oreal True Match Concealer, for me this is similar to the Maybelline Age Rewind and I don't tend to reach for it as much as it doesn't conceal enough, although layered over the top of the Seventeen Phwoarr Paint it adds radiance to my under eyes and feels lovely and hydrating, a good pick for anyone with a dry skin type and little to cover under the eyes.


Do you have an affordable concealer favourite?

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Monday, 17 April 2017

A Guide To Perfect Looking Fake Tan

Since Christmas I don't think there has been a time that I haven't worn fake tan. I always feel 10x better when I wear it so I've decided to make it a regular part of my beauty routine. I've made quite a few mistakes when it comes to all things tanning, so I thought I would share my experiences and my top tips for the perfect looking fake tan...


1) Disposable/ latex gloves
2) A fake tan mit/ old sock (I will explain later)
3) Your fake tan of choice
4) Exfoliating gloves/ exfoliating body brush
5) Body butter / body moisturiser
6) Body scrub

Skin Prep
Before fake tan goes anywhere near my body I always make sure to prep. I start off by using exfoliating gloves and a good body scrub, at the moment I have been loving the Hempz Pomegranate Body Scrub*, this is enriched with hemp seed oil so it removes any dead skin whilst leaving my skin feeling soft and hydrated - love love love this stuff! Another favourite is the Soap and Glory Breakfast Smoothie Scrub, it smells amazing and really does get rid of any flaky/ dry skin.

After exfoliating I move on to moisturising, if I'm fake tanning straight after moisturising I'll take something a little thinner in texture, if not I'll use a body butter and I'm currently using the NSPA Fruit Extracts Rich Body Butter*. I adore this as it doesn't feel greasy or tacky and absorbs into the skin fairly quickly for such a thick body butter, it reminds me of The Body Shop options except a fraction of the price which I'm all for!

I will usually exfoliate three times a week to keep on top of removing old fake tan and then moisturise every day, doing this stops the fake tan coming off awkwardly after around 5-6 days and it stays looking fresh.

Tanning favourites and application
Onto actually fake tanning, there are so many different types of fake tan you can buy and I've tried pretty much all of them. I love using gradual tanner when it comes to the summer months, my favourite is Dove Summer Glow in the medium/ dark shade. The only issue I find with gradual tanner is not being able to see where you put the product, there's always that risk of waking up to find that one white streak you missed! I still follow the same exfoliating and moisturising process mentioned above when using gradual tanner.

At the moment I've been using the St Moritz Mousse tan for a more intense look. I have tried St Tropez but found this to be just as good, if not better! This is an instant tan that develops on the skin in around 5-10 hours and it also has a guide tan so perfect for beginners as you can see exactly where you have applied the product. I usually apply this in the evening and then shower it off the next morning, admittedly this doesn't smell great when it has just been applied, but once showered the typical tan smell has pretty much gone. I always go for medium and that leaves me with a really natural looking tan, not at all orange or overly tanned.

I always think someones hands are the biggest giveaway as to whether they're wearing fake tan or not. I've been that person with brown arms and white hands before - it ain't a good look. I've found the best way to do my hands is to wear a disposable glove, you can pick up a pack of 100 for around £1 and then the tan never sinks through the applicator onto my hands. After applying the tan to my whole body I can then go back to the hands and apply a small amount so it blends more naturally.

When applying a mousse tan I used to use a tanning mit but found they never fit well and not only make it difficult to actually blend the tan in but it would just absorb all the product and make a mess. Now, I just use a sock! Not only does it mean I can blend the tan in seamlessly but it's cheaper and far easier and I can just throw it in the wash afterwards. When it comes to applying a gradual tanner I just wash my hands after applying it and then apply a drop on the back of my hand and rub the backs of my hands together and blend down my arms.

I apply fake tan usually 3 times a week just after I have exfoliated and I've found this to work well for me. I don't actually tan my face at the moment and just use makeup so my skin matches the same colour as my neck.

For a quick fix
When I need to be tanned and don't have the time to wait for gradual tanner or the St Mortiz tan to develop there are a few products I turn to. The Cocoa Brown 1 Hour Express Tan is my go to for when I'm in a rush, this is double the price of the St Mortiz tan however it smells amazing and it does give an even more intense tan, it also has a guide colour but develops in just 1 hour! Another favourite is the Soap and Glory The Righteous Body Butter Sun Kissed Tint, if you're going on holiday and want to add a glow to your complexsion aswel as a tan then this is perfect. It has more of a red undertone so looks incredibly natural, also perfect if your have dry skin as it's moisturising too. Although this does wash off straight away, so if you know you're going to be near water I would give this a miss as it will start coming off.


Top tips
1) Don't forget to go around your ankles and feet with the tan
2) Try and apply tan in natural day light or good lighting if possible
3) Keep your skin hydrated
4) If you shave your legs don't apply fake tan straight after doing this as it will settle into where the hairs were
5) Whatever you do, don't tan the palms of your hands...

If you are a fake tan wearer I would love to know your favourite products and tips for the perfect tan...

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