19 October 2014

Beauty Advice I Would Give To My Younger Self

Aaah those innocent younger years of experimenting. I spent most of middle school with no eyebrows, cringey blonde highlights and an over powering scent of Versace Red Jeans. Mum, why did you not stop me? I've burnt all photos of me from 2002-2009 and come up with a few beauty tips I would give to my younger self.

- Don't cut off your side burns. Everyone has them, they are normal.
- Cheap shop bought wax strips will end in you crying in the bath trying to gently remove the strip.
- Don't share mascara.
- Hair mascara is never ok; unless it's for fancy dress then proceed.
- Don't put Typex on your teeth to whiten them.
- Powder should not be worn alone all over as foundation.
- Stop picking split ends, it's just making them worse.
- Expensive products don't always mean they will be any good.
- Your mum knows best.
- Stop trying to cover up your freckles.
- Don't buy that foundation three shades darker than your skin colour because you want to look like you've spent 2 weeks in Ibiza.
- Stop rimming your entire eye with black kohl liner.
- Always wash your hands after self tanning.
- Don't shave your eyebrows or anywhere on your face for that matter.
- Stop matching your headband with your cardigan and tshirt.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

18 October 2014

TK Maxx Beauty Haul

If you didn't already know, TK Maxx stock some really good beauty brands. I often see brands such as Neom, Elizabeth Arden, Real Techniques, This Works, Ciate, Estee Lauder and Dior plus loads more. I made a visit to TK MAxx  last week during their Big Brand Beauty Drop where they dropped millions of beauty products instore. As every store is different you may not be able to find the exact same products as me but I'm sure you'll find something you will love.

Korres Suncream Face Cream Yoghurt SPF 30 £9.99
Skin Therapy Cosmetic Blending Sponge £4.99
Essie Nail Laqucer in 'Mind Your Mittens' and 'The Girls Are Out' £7.99 for two
Chesapeake Bay Candle in '05 Golden Amber' £7.99
Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap £3.99
IntensivEye Collagen Under-Eye Pads £4.99 for 5 treatments
Stylfile S-file £2.99

Have you checked out TK Maxx for beauty bits? 

15 October 2014

La Roche Posay Effaclar Anti-Blemish System Review

la roche posay effaclar duo system review

La Roche Posay fans listen up, you're gonna want to hear about this. Their cult beauty buy Effaclar Duo is now available in a three step kit for your skincare pleasure. Effaclar Duo+ is the only product I'd tried from the brand so I was intrigued to see how I would get on with the new system. It combines three simple steps designed to combat oily, blemished skin. The kit claims to provide visible results in just 24 hours and significantly clearer-looking skin in 4 weeks. I've been using these products for just over a month now and here's how I got on.

Purifying Foaming Gel Cleanser
I tend to avoid foaming cleansers because I read they aren't good for your skin. I haven't had any trouble using this wash which doesn't leave my skin feeling dry or stripped like some can. To use, you wet hands, lather a small amount and massage into skin. It doesn't have a strong scent and is suitable for sensitive skin. The thick gel helps to reduce excess sebum and remove bacteria which may lead to spots. My skin is left super soft after using this and ready to move onto the next step! 
Clarifying Toner
New to the UK and designed to reduce the appearance of pore size and mattify the skin. It's quite hard to tell if this does make my pores appear smaller but my skin looks matt and feels smooth after use. The soothing toner is gentle enough to use twice a day and controls my oily t-zone.
Effaclar Duo+
I've used this product in the past and enjoyed it. I've only been using this on my blemishes and used a separate moisturiser to hydrate the rest on my face. It does help to reduce to appearance of red marks and unclogs pores. Read my full review here.

I'm impressed that all the products are full sized so they should last around 6 weeks. My skin is clearer but my blemishes haven't gone entirely and a few have recently appeared on my chin. I'll continue to use these three products in the hope that it quickly gets rid of any new spots and doesn't cause scarring. I love how affordable La Roche Posay is, especially considering all their products are such high quality. Oily skin gals might want to give this kit a go.

The 3-step regime* is £32.50 and exclusive at Boots here

14 October 2014

Autumn/Winter 2014 Nail Varnish Trends

autumn winter 2014 nail trends
(l-r Collection 'Poison My Ivy', 'Daredevil', Maybelline 'Bare It All', Essie 'Mind Your Mittens', OPI 'Metallic For Life', L'oreal '617', Collection 'Gold finger' and 'Silver Moon')

When I think of autumnal tones I imagine greys, navy skies, mossy greens and dusty reds. The A/W catwalks were full of these classic wintry shades and beauty brands have launched a smorgasbord of nail varnish shades for us to ogle at. Here's my serving of my Autumn mani must-haves:

Collection Hero Nail Varnish Range
The latest additions to the Collection Lasting Finish range definitely have an Autumnal look to them. The wide brushes make for a super speedy manicure and the gel finish gives a brilliant shine. The new Hero range includes 'Gold Finger' a dark green gold, 'Poison My Ivy' a dark forest green, 'In The Shadows' a deep grey shade and 'Daredevil' a 90's red with a hint of brown. These kind of shades ooze Halloween too, which one should I go for?
Maybelline Colour Show Stripped Nudes in Bare It All
If you're not into dark tips, nude nail were seen at Ellie Saab. Natural looking nails look so clean, elegant and sophisticated - perfect for those I-have-no-idea-what-colour-to-paint-my-nails days. 'Bare It All' from the Stripped Nude collection is a beige-y grey shade similar to Barry M 'Lychee'. Just 2 coats are need for full opaqueness.
Essie in Mind Your Mittens
Almost black nail polishes are an great alternative if you didn't want to rock black nails. 'Mind Your Mittens' is a dark teal shade with a hint of black, it looks almost grey on.
OPI Metallic For Life
Metallic nails were seen on catwalks such as Libertine and Badgley Mischka. They always look great on nails during the party season. I recommend getting a metallic topcoat so you can jazz up your existing polishes. 'Metallic For Life' consists of chunks of silver, black and white glitter - it looks amazing on it's own layered with 3 coats.
Collection Galactica in Silver Moon
If you want to try the metallic trend but hate glitter polishes go for something like this from Collection. The silver polish gives tin foil-esque nails. These polishes are perfect for trying out new beauty trends on a budget. I reviewed the new range here.
L'oreal Colour Riche in 617
Grey nails look great in the winter especially with your new fluffy white Zara jumper. There is something very chic about grey nails, I love '617' from L'oreal which is a pale grey shade.

What colours will you be opting for this A/W?

Don't forget to enter my giveaway to win 1 of 5 limited edition Dove totes!

12 October 2014

What Product Can't You Live Without?

We all have that one beauty item we couldn't live without. For me, concealer is my security blanket. I first discovered it's majestical powers when playing with my Mum's makeup. I was born looking tired and my dark circles were making me feel insecure so I rummaged through my Mum's makeup bag and came across a Max Factor Pan Stick which I smeared under my eyes like war paint and my dark circles were gone! I thought it was the best thing ever but I actually had two orange stripes under my eyes which wasn't my greatest make up moment. As a teen I quickly became obsessed with teen magazines such as 'Girl Talk' and 'Shout' and I remember reading that you should use a yellow concealer to hide dark circles. I spent a whole weekend hunting down the NYX Yellow Corrector which I would pat on followed by applying the Natural Collection Liquid Concealer using my 'Forever Friends' mirror. Those two makeup items boosted my confidence so much, I was hooked on the stuff.

My affection for concealer has increased throughout the years. Like any relationship it has had its bad days. There was the one that creased like crazy, the one with highlighting particles which looked more like glitter and the one that actually managed to make me look even more tired. I've tested pretty much every concealer on the market and I don't think I've found the one yet.

My dependency on concealer isn't healthy. I buy the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in bulk just incase I happened to misplace all nine. Some people carry lipstick in their handbags for touch-ups, but I always tote my -yep you guessed it- concealer. It's not yet become an addiction, I can venture out in public without the good stuff but a pair of sunglasses is needed as a replacement.

I will always love concealer. Watching your insecurities fade away as you apply it is so satisfying. It makes me feel better about myself and I don't feel ready for the day without a little concealing. Is it possible to be in love with a makeup item? Don't be silly. This is stronger than love.

Can you relate? What's your cosmetic security blanket?
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