A UK Beauty, Lifestyle & Parenting Blog

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Starting Off: Makeup Tools

Heyyy beauts!  Aww, can't believe it's the final week of #theSOproject.  What is going on?  10 weeks have passed in an absolute blur!  It's gonna be Christmas before we know it!  Anyhow, last but not least we have Makeup Tools.  Without the right tools, we will all look like fools.  Hehehehhhh see what I did there?Awful, just awful! ha!  No seriously though, when it comes to makeup, choosing the right tools is essential.  For this post I'm not gonna ramble on about every single makeup brush/tool out there as quite frankly I don't even know them all and it would take until next October just to comprise the list.  For this post, I'll give a rundown of the basic tools I think you would need in your starter kit.

Basic Tools for a good #SO kit

Stippling/Buffing Brush - Now I wouldn't say this is essential, but I wanted to put it in as I literally couldn't live without my buffing brush to apply my liquid foundation.  Like I said, not essential as you could just use your fingers (like I did for many years), but a brush honestly makes your foundation apply and look so much better.

L to R - MAC 187 Duo Fibre Brush - £33.50
Real Techniques Buffing Brush (part of the Core Collection) - £21.99
E.L.F. Studio StippleBrush - £3.75

Powder Brush - A good powder brush is a must, especially for those with oily skin who need to use powder to set their makeup. You can get them that aren't too big that can be used for all over face powder, blusher, bronzer.  A good multi tasker.

L to R - Mac 150 Large Powder Brush - £33.50
Real Techniques Powder Brush £10.99
Seventeen Powder Brush - £3

Blusher Brush - Everyone loves a bit of blusher don't they.  This can also be doubled up for bronzing and contouring to begin with.

L to R - MAC 116 Blush Brush - £27
The Body Shop Blusher Brush - £12
Real Techniques Blush Brush - £9.99


Flat Eyeshadow Brush - For packing on that all important colour onto the eye lid.

L to R - MAC 213 Fluff Brush - £18
Real Techniques Shading Brush - £7.99
E.L.F Flat Eyeshadow Brush - £1.50

Domed Eyeshadow Blending Brush -  For blending out any harsh lines, crease work and can even be used for concealer.

L to R - MAC 217 Blending Brush - £18
The Body Shop Eyeshadow Blender Brush - £10
E.L.F. Blending Eye Brush - £1.50

I'm sure many people will argue that there's a few others that deserve to be in the beginners lineup, but for me, this is all I need for a basic kit.  For instance, I could easily manage on holiday if I just took these along with me.  Theres a couple of brushes (for example; contour brush) that I use on a regular basis, but I could manage without it by multitasking with the others.  My favourite face brushes are the Real Techniques ones.  I have one MAC brush that I absolutely LOVE but of course I just can't afford them all.  The Real Techniques ones are AMAZING quality at such an affordable price.  There's a reason that everyone who's anyone in blog world owns at least one RT brush.

Sooo.. thats it.  Hope it makes sense and hope I haven't left any major brushes out of the mix haha.  I know I've already said this but can't believe this wonderful project has come to an end.  I've really enjoyed making these posts and I've honestly learnt a lot whilst reading up on each topic and reading everyone else's.  Hope you've enjoyed reading and look forward to the next project... ;-)

Pssst .. #TheWinterProject - a follow up to #theSOproject organised by the lovely Kellie over at Bold95Beauty starts next week!  Keep an eye out for the new posts and if you can... GET INVOLVED! :)


Monday, 28 October 2013

Starting Off: Lips

Hey Beauties.  I know this post is super super late, but I was away last week and I had a very poorly baby after his 13 month injections so I've been really busy and had decided I was just going to leave this post out and carry on with others -  but then I thought nooo, I have lots to say about lip products so I thought better late than never.  So here we are, week 9 of #theSOproject .  This time I'll just do a brief overview of the different types of lip products available (as there are so many) and my current favourites.  I'll steer clear of colours/shades as I think that is simply down to personal preference.  While one shade may look absolutely stunning on one person, it may make the next person look like death warmed up. ha.

Different types of lip products

Lipstick - Probably the oldest and most common form of lip colour.  They come in 'stick' form as you can tell by the name, and are usually very creamy and quite pigmented.  They aim to have a pretty good staying power compared to other forms of lip colour and can come in either sheen, cream or matte finishes.  One thing to bear in mind when applying lipstick is many of them can be quite drying on the lips (especially the matte ones), so if your lips aren't hydrated enough, many lipsticks will cling to those dry patches and just end up looking a complete mess.  I advise using a lip balm before applying your lipstick and it will help the lipstick glide on for a much nicer finish.

Lip Gloss - A firm favourite among the younger generation.  Lip glosses give your lips a beautiful sheen and some even make your lips look fuller.  They can be applied on their own or above lipsticks to simply give a sheen to the lip colour.  Some are clear, and some are coloured.  Also, lip lacquers have popped up recently, which are more highly pigmented than regular lip glosses but are still really moisturising and tend to last that little bit longer. I think lip glosses are so popular because of how easy they are to apply.  Easy to just throw in your bag and top up throughout the day.  It's important to note that some lip glosses can be really thick and sticky so don't be put off if you get one like that - they're not all like that, just make sure you swatch before you buy.  I've had plenty in my time.  Nothing worse than a sticky lip gloss - especially in the winter months when it's windy and my hair just attaches itself to my lip and won't let go. Bork.

Lip Crayon - Something that has burst onto the highstreet recently, following up from the success of the likes of Clinique's Chubby Sticks.  I absolutely LOVE lip crayons.  I'd say they fall smack bang in the middle of a lipstick and a lip gloss.  Some of them are so highly pigmented like lipsticks, yet apply effortlessly and are so lovely and moisturising that they feel like a lip gloss.  Because they are so well pigmented, they seem to last a lot longer than lip glosses.  I think that's why these have become so successful, as they are just the perfect mix.  Great for day to day use and even more perfect for a night out.

Lip Liner/Pencil - Aim to do exactly what they say.  They line your lips so that you can create the perfect lip shape and stop your other lip product from going crazy.  Some lip pencils can even be used to simply colour the whole lip in, but I can only assume that will be quite drying.  Now these are something I've struggled to get to grips with if I'm gonna be truly honest.  I've seen countless tutorials on applying these and they make it look so easy, but when I do it it just looks silly.  Maybe I need a few lessons haha.

Lip Balm - Of course, an absolute MUST for everyone (males included).  Lip balm is essential in keeping your lips from becoming dry, chapped and downright uncomfortable, especially in the winter months.  Your other lip products will apply so much easier if you keep your lips well hydrated.  I have a ridiculous amount of lip balms and have one by my bed at all times and apply it every night without fail.  Nothing worse than sore lips.

Lip Scrub - Something I only tried for the first time a few months ago and WOW was I missing out.  It's basically exfoliation for your lips, because, just like your regular skin, you need to get rid of the dead skin in order to let the fresh skin out and glow in all it's soft and supple glory.  I use a lip scrub maybe 3 or 4 times a week just to reawaken my lips and I love love love the way my lips feel afterwards.

My Current Favourite Lip Products

The Body Shop Hemp Lip Protector - £4
Lush Popcorn Lip Scrub - £5.50
Maybelline Baby Lips in Cherry Me - £2.99
Bourjois Colour Boost Lip Crayons - £7.99
Rimmel Apocalips Lip Lacquer in Celestial - £6.49


Sunday, 27 October 2013

L'Oreal Elvive Extraordinary Oil Mist for Fine Hair

For a long time I've been struggling to find a hair oil that didn't weigh down and grease up my ridiculous hair!  I have a lot of hair, but it's so fine and goes greasy after 2 days and struggles to cope with products without being weighed down.  I've been blonde for a long time and have now gone a light brown and have ombr├ęd ends, which means my hair is really damaged and needs a bit of TLC.  I was pondering for a while about whether or not to try the L'Oreal Extraordinary Oil, when all of a sudden appeared a new mist for fine hair!  Perfect. I knew I had to give it a go, so off I trotted to Boots, where it was in fact on Save 1/3 (and still is).

L'Oreal have brought out 2 new mists to their Extraordinary Oil line.  One for normal hair and one for fine hair.  I picked up the fine hair version.  Described as a 'dry oil mist', this oil claims to 'wrap the hair in a luxurious veil of shine and lightness'.  It promises to absorb quickly without leaving a leftover greasy residue (something I had found with other hair oils and serums I had tried).  

Using this product on wet/damp hair before blow drying, I hold the bottle a few inches away from the ends of my hair and spray through, then brush through the lengths and ends so it's evenly distributed.  I love the 'mist' aspect as it really does make it so lightweight and easy to apply.  It also smells divine (bonus).  Once blowdried, my hair feels so feather light, soft and shiny, something I'd never found before.  I honestly noticed a huge difference in my hair from first use and I never leave it out of my routine now.  Even if I let my hair dry naturally I use some just for piece of mind that my hair is getting some goodness, and my naturally wavy hair looks a lot neater than it used to look.  I also gave this a go on dry, straightened hair to see how my dry hair managed to absorb it.  At first it looked greasy and felt weighed down and I was a little disappointed - but then 10minutes later I looked to find it had soaked in and my hair felt lovely and soft again.  Perfect for taming those annoying flyaways!

I can't believe how well this product worked on my hair.  I can't rave about it enough and will definitely be using it for a long time to come.  If, like me, you have fine hair and struggle to find a good oil - this is the one for you!  For the thicker haired readers, I suggest trying the original Extraordinary Oil, which has a pump as opposed to a spray.

Well done L'Oreal - you have one very happy customer!

Have you tried any of the Extraordinary Oils? 


Saturday, 26 October 2013

Bourjois Happy Light Matte Serum Primer & Foundation

Hey beauties.  No doubt many of you have already heard and read lots of reviews of Bourjois' new range 'Happy Light' (love the name btw), but just thought I'd share my thoughts on a couple of the new products.  I picked up both the Foundation and the Matte Serum Primer (as recently my skin has become a little bit more oily than normal).  For me, Bourjois are the boss of the highstreet brands when it comes to bases, so I was really excited to give these bad boys a go when I seen them on an introductory offer in Boots...

Happy Light Matte Serum Primer
(Current RRP £6.99.  Future RRP £10.99)

Bourjois have brought 2 new serum primers into their range, The Matte Serum Primer which is the one I picked up, and the Luminous Serum Primer.  Now the old me would have rushed to pick up the latter, as I love the luminous look and always looked for that when it came to bases.  But as I said above, my skin has been slightly oilier recently, leaving me with a shiny forehead and a few extra blemishes.  So I figured I'd try the Matte one and see how I go.

This primer, like most, can either be used on it's own or under foundation, and claims to mattify the skin and refine pores.  It's a light creamy gel texture, which is super easy to apply and absorbs really quickly.  However, I found that if I used it with my mattifying moisturiser (Garnier Moisture Match Shine Be Gone), it was a little bit too drying on my skin and felt a little bit harder to apply.  When I use it with a moisturiser aimed at normal skin it glides on much nicer and still mattifies the skin nicely so I would keep that in mind.  I've tried this underneath both the Happy Light Foundation (below) and the Healthy Mix Serum Foundation and felt it worked much better under the Healthy Mix Serum.  I found it made my skin 'too matte' and slightly tight (if that makes sense) when used under the Happy Light. I think perhaps my skin isn't quite oily enough for this combo.  Overall I think it does what it says, it certainly mattifies the skin, and I reckon people with very oily skin will get along very well with this. So I think I'll keep this primer for when I use Healthy Mix Serum as I'll definitely still use it, and I'll maybe try the luminous version aswell to see if that works better with the Happy Light.

Happy Light Foundation in 51 Rose Vanilla
(Current RRP £7.99.  Future RRP £11.99)

If, like me, you have loved Bourjois' other foundations (my absolute favourite being Healthy Mix Serum - sorry I know I keep going on about it), then no doubt you are hankering after trying their newest kid on the block!  I couldn't resist it in Boots and instantly ran home to try it out (sad? lol).  One thing I HAVE to mention, is, for some strange reason, the shades are much darker compared to other Bourjois foundations.  For example, I am the shade 53 (even 55 in summer as I tan quite well) in Healthy Mix Serum, but have had to get 51 in Happy Light as they seem to run so much darker.  So you really do need to swatch this before you buy and not just pick up your number.

Happy Light Foundation boasts the claim that it will give a 'luminous and flawless complexion in any light'.  Don't know how they can claim something like that - that sounds too perfect?  I think what they actually mean is that we can achieve a luminous complexion using without the need for shimmer and other factors.  The texture is classic liquid foundation, if not a bit lighter and runnier than most others I have tried.  I'd say the cover  is sheer to medium, depending on how much you build it up.  If you want really light tinted moisturiser esque coverage I'd suggest you use your fingertips.  I like to use my Real Techniques Buffing Brush to lightly buff into the skin and it covers my redness on my nose and leaves a lovely light but natural sheen, as opposed to being overly dewy or matte.  As I said above, I used it with my the Matte Serum Primer and didn't like the results as much, I felt it was a little harder to apply.  I have used it with a different primer (BareMinerals Prime Time) and it applied lovely - honestly effortless.  I'm excited to try this with the other Luminating Serum Primer and see how it fairs but I'm really pleased with this foundation.  I'm afraid I can't say it beats the amazing Healthy Mix Serum but it's definitely up there for giving a natural glow.  Perfect for anyone who wants that 'no makeup' makeup look!

Have you tried the new Happy Light range?
What do you think?


Thursday, 24 October 2013

Autumn/Winter 2013 MUST HAVES!

Hey beauties! I have decided to dedicate a post to the A/W 13 season which, looking at the weather this week, is pretty much in full swing!  What better way to kick it off than to do a post on the staples/must haves of the season? So here we go...

  1. Tartan ScarfTartan is absolutely everywhere this season, and I for one love it.  Nothing feels more wintery than a nice big scarf, and team a big lovely scarf with the classic tartan pattern and you have a winter winner.  I have needed to get my hands on this one for a couple of weeks and still can't seem to find it. I'm sure there will be a similar version in most other shops soon so I suggest you all rush there to get your hands on one.  Lush!!
    (Tartan Scarf. £4. Primark)
  2. The Classic ParkaWho doesn't need a parka in their lives?  To me, they are the perfect winter coat! They go with just about everything and are always on trend!  I picked this one up a couple of weeks ago and it's so snug!
    (Khaki Parka. £55. Dorothy Perkins)
  3. Lip Balm
    I think this goes without saying.  The cold weather means dry, chapped lips.  Always, always ALWAYS carry a lip balm with you, you won't regret it.  The world has gone crazy for the Maybelline Baby Lips lip balms recently and I can see why.  They come in 6 different flavours, 3 of which are tinted.  I picked up one of the tinted versions (Cherry Me), which is absolutely gorgeous.  Beautifully scented and a lovely hint of colour. Can't go wrong with these.
    (Maybelline Baby Lips. £2.99)
  4. Deep, Dark Lips!Deep reds, purples and plums are always a big hit once the cold weather hits.  Time to dig out your darker shades for the autumn/winter.  Especially for the party season! 
  5. Deep, Dark Nails!Need I say any more?  The same applies to nails as it does to the lips.  Time to ditch the pastels and dig out the rich, deep burgundys, blues and greens! Ooooooh I love it!
  6. Winter Friendly Moisturiser
    Obviously, your healthy, well moisturised summer skin takes a big hit once the cold weather arrives.  If your skin takes the change quite badly then it's maybe time to update your skincare to include a richer moisturiser and perhaps even a nice juicy serum to get that moisture back into your dehydrated skin!  Obviously you don't need to go all out and spend as much as the one I have pictured, I certainly haven't.  I've just heard a lot about this one recently so thought it could feature!
    (Philosophy Hope in a Jar. £34)
So there we go.  Stock up on the 6 items above and you should survive the extreme conditions. ha.  Hope this post was informative. 

What's on your Autumn/Winter must have list this year?


Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Starting Off: Eyeshadow

Hey beauties!  Well here we are again!  I feel really bad as I didn't get to do a post on eyeliner last week, mainly due to the fact that I'm really no good with eyeliners (need to practice), but I also just didn't have the time.  But anyhow, I'm back for week number 8. This week: Eyeshadow!  This is something I am only just getting to grips with as I always simply stuck to one block colour on the lids so never felt the need to buy many.  But I'm starting to branch out and learning lots as I go. YouTube has been my saviour haha. As ever, I will explain the basics of eyeshadow, the different types, how to apply and my current favourites.

What is Eyeshadow?
Eyeshadow is a form of makeup that you apply on the eyelid and underneath the eyebrows.  If used correctly, it can make the eyes the main feature of the whole face and really make them stand out.  Eyeshadow is usually used to either enhance eye colour, add depth to the eyes or in fact just make them stand out.

The Different Types of Eyeshadow

Compact Powder Eyeshadow - These are probably the oldest and most common form of eyeshadows, as they come in singles, aswell as multiples up to super huge 100 colour palettes.  They are easiest to play with so best for beginners (like me, lol).

Loose Powder Eyeshadow - This is probably the hardest to get to grips with, as it's so messy, but it is also the most highly pigmented and can result in AMAZING eyes!

Cream Eyeshadow - Cream eyeshadows are becoming more and more popular lately.  They have existed for a long time in palettes like powders have, and they have suddenly burst onto the scene in pot form (such as the MAC paint pot), as well as stick form (Clinique Chubby Sticks & Rimmel Scandaleyes being the extremely popular choices).  The good thing about these is they can be used alone or as a base for the previous two types of eyeshadow.

How to apply

Firstly, you want to choose which type of eyeshadow you want to use.  So for example, if you're using a powder or loose powder, you will need some brushes.  I'd say to begin with (in my own experience so far) the 2 main brushes you will need are a basic flat eyeshadow brush (to pack on the colour to the whole lid), a blender brush (to blend out any harsh lines and tie your colours in together).  The other brushes you can maybe get along the line as you learn.  If you choose to use a cream eyeshadow, you can use your fingers to blend it in or you can use brushes.

So, after you've chosen your eyeshadow and form of application, you are ready to begin.  If you want your eyeshadow to last longer, I'd recommend using an eyeshadow primer first.  (I am currently looking for a good primer so if anyone has any recommendations of high street ones then throw them my way, ha).  I am currently using Revlon's Vital Radiance Smoothing Eyeshadow Primer (which I think has been discontinued, but you can still buy it on eBay).  It works quite well and I definitely notice a difference in my eyeshadow when I do use it, but I just fancy trying some others to see whats what!

So once your primer has settled in, it's time to add the shadow.  It's always best to add one solid colour to the base of the lid to begin with.  If you are using a brush, it's best to pat colour on to the lid as opposed to brushing it on.  I've found it makes the colour look better.

If you want to go any further, such as a smokey eye etc, you might want to have a look at youtube videos.  There's some awesome tutorials out there.  It's a lot harder to describe in writing.  Plus I'm not great myself yet haha.  Yes I'm babbling now...

My Current Favourites

As I'm still only dabbling in the basics, I have found 2 palettes that have really been good to me so far, and are an absolute bargain!

MUA Undress Me and Undress Me Too Palettes - £4 each. Superdrug
Apologies for the flash, it was dark and I realised I still hadn't taken the photo for this post, whoopsie!!

When I was looking for some nice new shadows to start practising, I obviously didn't want to spend too much so I started having a look around.  These palettes have been raved about in blog world so I thought I'd give them a go.  £4 is an absolute steal for a decent 12 eyeshadow palette.  For £4 each, I'm really impressed with both of these palettes.  Their formulas are so soft and creamy and they last for a good 8hours+ which is impressive.  I'd really recommend getting these as a starter kit.  Full review on these bad boys coming soon.

Anyway, I feel like this has been my most babbly post of #theSOproject so far.  Probably because it's my least experienced one haha.  Hope it has made sense and I'm really looking forward to learning more and reading some of the other wonderful posts.


Friday, 11 October 2013

Monthly Favourites || September 2013

Hiiii people!  So I've got 11 days into October and realised I hadn't posted my September favourites, nooooooooooo.  Better late than never? I think so, therefore here we go.  Here's some of the products I've really been loving this month!!

  • Lee Stafford Hair Growth Range -  Shampoo (£6.99) & Hair Treatment (£7.99)
    Sooo after trying to grow my hair out for well over 2 years and it finally getting past my shoulders, it's suddenly hit a stand still and refuses to go any further.  Therefore I have started really putting more time and effort into my locks recently, with more oils, treatments etc to see if I can get it moving again.  I found these beauties on a 3 for £12 in Boots which I thought was AWESOME seen as how they are £6 or £7 each!!  I bought the Shampoo twice, because I didn't feel I really needed the conditioner as I have so many already and only put it on the ends of the hair anyway.  I then bought the hair treatment which goes on after Shampoo but before conditioner.  I really like this range, it smells lovely and the treatment especially makes my hair feel silky soft.  I think I'm gonna have to do a full review on this as I do think it has helped give my hair a kick up the errrm.. bum!
  • Lush Popcorn Lip Scrub (£5.50)
    If you haven't got one of these, you really do need one!  Blogworld is crazy for them and I now know why!  I asked on the #BBloggers chat during the summer about which is the best lip scrub to get, and the Lush Lip Scrubs came up trumps, so the next day I trotted down and picked one of these bad boys up!  I went for the popcorn variety as it smells DELISH!  It's so easy to apply as well, just scrub a pinch onto your lips and then lick off the excess to reveal silky smooth lips.  Literally good enough to eat!  I probably use this every other day, as I don't wanna over do it.  However, the winter months will probably require every day use.  I'm so glad I found this as it makes my lippies and lip balms go on so much nicer! Big thumbs up from mee!
  • Boots Botanics Hot Cloth Cleansing Balm (£8.99)
    I have been using this religiously every night since I bought it mid-september and absolutely love it. It makes my skin feel so clean and soft.  See my full review here.
  • The Body Shop Vitamin E Eye Cream (£10)
    I've been using this since I got it as part of a little Birthday present at the end of August and it's still going strong.  I use it day and night and really love it.  It doesn't sting at all and feels so soothing around the most delicate area of the face.  You only need the tiniest amount of this on your ring finger to blend in well, and it doesn't leave a greasy residue - it dries to a matte finish quite quickly which I love.  I feel it has really helped with my puffiness and dark circles (which were starting to become regular guests after having my baby - standard, lol).  I recommend this, and will most probably buy it again when it runs out!  Can't do without an eye cream in my routine now!
  • L'Oreal Skin Perfection 3 in 1 Purifying Micellar Solution (£4.99)
    After being VERY VERY slow in jumping on the Micellar Water bandwagon, I finally thought I'd give it a go when I seen this beauty flying around the blogosphere.  Being dubbed a dupe for the famous Bioderma, but for a fraction of the price, I thought I couldn't go wrong with this one.  I'm glad I did.  I've been loving it so far.  It removes ALL traces of makeup like a dream and makes my skin feel so fresh.  I have been pairing it with my Boots Botanics Eye Makeup Remover (which I reviewed here) to remove all traces of makeup, before I go on to do a full cleanse.  Although I'll have to be honest, I've had a couple of late nights in which I was feeling SO tired that I just lazily used this and nothing else and it worked well.  I'll definitely be buying this again when I run out.  With this, I don't feel a massive urge to go and buy Bioderma!
  • The Body Shop Tea Tree Face Mask (£10)
    Another Birthday present which I have been absolutely LOVING.  I use this every Sunday night, lol - yes I know it sounds geeky but I like to have a set day so that I don't forget, plus Sunday is usually the night I spend longer in the bath and have a nice long soak.  I've really been loving this face mask as it doesn't go rock hard and hurt like some do.  It feels so cooling and really feels as though it's cleaning my skin.  I've noticed much healthier skin and less redness around my nose since using this and I will continue to do so every week.  Full review coming soon!
  • The Body Shop Colour Crush Lip Stick in 110 Coral Blush (£10)
    If you read my post in August (here) about how I was lucky enough to win the full collection of The Body Shop's brand new Colour Crush Lip Sticks, you'll know how excited I was.  After testing them I have a few favourites, but this one has been featuring heavily recently.  It's the most beautiful shade of corally pink and it adds a lovely, but subtle colour to my lips.  Perfect for every day use.  Very impressed.
  • River Island Thumb Ring / River Island Finger Top Rings (£2 - £4)
    I've been loving these lately.  Finger tops (or above the knuckle rings) are really on trend recently so had to get my hands on one.  I bought a thumb ring, and 2 sets of finger top rings and I've been alternating them all month.  Beauties!  Find them here.
And thats yer lot!  
What's on your favourites list for September?


Sunday, 6 October 2013

Productive Sunday || Cleaning My Makeup Brushes

Hey beauts! Sooo I had some spare time this morning while the little one was napping and thought.. what better way to spend my hour of peace than to do one of the chores that I really hate? Obviously I would rather chill with a cuppa catching up on some tv but this had to be done!  I always find cleaning my makeup brushes such a hassle and I really can't be bothered (even though it's fairly easy).  I think I just hate that they have to lay there and take ages to dry, when I like them being neat and tidy in their homes (lol). I'm very naughty and tend to leave them longer than I should before giving them a good bath.  I bet I'm not the only one, am I?? Soo I thought I'd do a little post about how I clean my brushes.

Firstly, I take an old towel (usually the towel I keep aside for when I'm dying my hair), and some baby shampoo, as apparently it is more gentle for the delicate bristles (I always have this in the house given that I have a 1 year old).  I take the brushes that need washing and go to the bathroom and lay them all out on the towel in a geeky little order as shown below...

I then run the water until it is warm and take a small dollop of baby shampoo into my hand...

I then take the first brush and slightly wet it under the running tap and swirl it around my hand into the shampoo to work it into a small lather...

Once it is in a good lather and you can see the makeup coming away, I usually just hold the very tip of the brush under the running water and squeeze it until the water runs clear.  I then squeeze the excess water out, reshape the brush and lie it flat on the towel to dry...

I then go along the little row in order and do exactly the same until they are all sparkling clean and looking like this...

I actually forgot the Real Techniques brushes were supposed to be white at the tips haha.  I then just leave them like this all day and overnight (maybe turn them over before I go to bed).  Hopefully they should all be dry by the morning.  If not then I'll have to use my backup brushes to apply makeup tomorrow.

Hope this was an interesting and informative post, ha!
How do you clean your brushes?

Brushes were all lovely and fluffy and dry when I woke up on Monday morning so I was able to get them back into their rightful homes. Yayy..


Friday, 4 October 2013

Love Me Beauty Box | September

Hey beauties!  This month's beauty box comes from the lovely people at Love Me Beauty (they have just rebranded from Beauteco Box).  This makes it my second box as I was so pleased with the first.  I lovee the packaging and how it's environmentally friendly, and you can just tell that they have put lots of effort into making it look lovely.  I just wanted to share with you all what I got, I haven't had chance to try any of them yet so I may do reviews on a couple of them at a later date.

Inner Me Lustrous Locks
I'm having a bit of a nightmare with my hair at the moment, it's just in really bad condition as I've been trying to grow it out so I'm hoping these bad boys actually work. Never tried anything like this for my hair.


Nip+Fab Stiletto Fix


Essential Care Lemon & Tea Tree Facial Wash


Murad Osmolyte Tonic
Heard lots of good things about the brand Murad recently, so looking forward to trying this to give my skin that extra bit of hydration!


Anatomicals Puffy the Eye Bag Slayer Revitalising Eye Mask
This is so cute, can't wait to try!


So that's it.  Looking forward to giving these a try.  Have you ordered from Love Me Beauty before?
Do you order any other beauty boxes?


Thursday, 3 October 2013

Wishlist #3 || October 2013

October already? What's going on?  Here we are, another month means another cheeky wishlist.  I managed 2 out of 8 items off my September Wishlist which isn't too bad, plus I got a different parka to the one on the wislist so technically I got 3 of my wanted items lol.  Anyway, here's my wishlist for the month of October.

Bourjois Magic Nail Polish Remover - £4.99
ASOS Large Turquoise Satchel Bag - £28
Topshop Marquis Multi Buckle Boots - £45
Bumble&Bumble Thickening DrySpun Finish Spray - £21.50
Primark Tartan Scarf - £4
LUSH Jumping Juniper Shampoo Bar for Oily Hair - £5.50
Pandora Birthstone (August) Peridot Ring - £40 (still here from my September wishlist as I really neeed this)

What's on your wishlist this month? x


Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Review || Boots Botanics Hot Cloth Cleansing Balm

Hey lovelies.  I have a little review for you all today.  After reading so many blogs raving about cleansing balms, with REN's No1 Purity Cleansing Balm (£23.00) and Emma Hardie's Moringa Cleansing Balm (£34.00) being top of the lists.. I decided I needed to try one!  However, given the two price tags, I really didn't feel I could spend that much on something I was just wanting to try out.  So I was in the market for a cheaper alternative when this little beauty caught my eye!  Especially as it is a fraction of the price of the others, and it was actually on offer at the time aswell which was a bonus (£5.99 instead of £8.99).  Boot's have really stepped up the mark when they rebranded their Botanics range.  I'd already given a rave review of their All Bright Soothing Eye Makeup Remover (here) and now this.

Apologies for the poor quality photos, my camera was having a mare trying to focus! Grr

The Hot Cloth Cleansing Balm (70ml) comes in a white tub and also includes a white muslin cloth.  The product itself is quite highly scented with rosehip which I like, and is really quite hard upon first contact but soon breaks down into a smooth balm which is easily massaged into the skin.  The instructions are to massage in upward motions into the face and neck, then to first use the warm muslin cloth as a compress to draw out any impurities, followed by gentle rubbing the cloth in circular motions to remove the rest of the balm.  You are then advised to run the cloth under cold water and pat onto the skin to close the pores.  This technique works really well for me and I really feel as though it cleans the skin very well.  I do use the muslin cloth it comes with, but obviously to avoid any breakouts I use fresh one's regularly.

I have to say I have honestly noticed a difference after using this balm.  I don't use it on a morning just because I tend to be rushing around after my 1 year old so I do a quick wash with my cleansing gel, but I do use this every night after my cleansing gel so it's like a double cleanse to remove the day's gunk (lol, lovely).  It leaves my skin feeling SO soft, (honestly like nothing I've ever tried), and it seems to have reduced my sensitive skin and blemishes around my nose. Wooo.

All in all, I'm really pleased I found this and unless another one catches my eye I will definitely be repurchasing this.  I think it will last quite a long time as I've been using it for almost 2 weeks now and it hardly has a dent in it.

Have you tried this cleansing balm?  Are there any high street cleansing balms out there you would recommend?

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