Saturday, 18 March 2017

NEW IN: ARMANI/PRIVE | PIVOINE SUZHOU






Whenever I go to Selfridges, I have always walked straight through the fragrance hall and never batted an eyelid. Although, this all changed about two years or so ago when I was walking out of Selfridges and I went past the Armani/Prive stand. I still do not understand why I stopped but I did and I discovered the Armani/Prive Pivoine Suzhou perfume. I finished an entire bottle and when I was in Selfridges last month, I picked up another bottle and that's when I knew that this is probably my favourite perfume...ever! It is definitely not your average fragrance and it is a pricey little bottle but it lasts for days on the skin and your clothes. I literally spritz it on my neck and I can still smell it throughout the day. It is inspired by the gardens of Asia and in particular the peony. It is definitely a floral and feminine scent, so if that is not up your street, I would definitely suggest checking out the rest of the scents in the range, as there are so many to choose from!

Whenever I wear this perfume, I always get asked what I'm wearing - and that never happens! Pivoine Suzhou is not overpowering by any means, even though it is a floral scent, it is still light and crisp. With notes of juicy mandarin, pink pepper, raspberry and base notes of rose, amber, patchouli and musk, it is perfect to wear at anytime of day. 

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

5 THINGS: CURRENT HIGH-END BEAUTY OBSESSIONS





High end products. Everything about these products just screams luxury and (normally) it does not lack on quality. I have been loving a few products for the last couple of weeks and they are actually my go to products. The Anastasia Beverly Hills stick foundations are amazing. It took me a while to get a hang of the whole 'contour and highlight' with a cream stick foundation and whilst I still can't really get away with a deep contour and highlight, these stick foundations do not fail. They are incredibly creamy, so you have time to really work with the product before it dries and sets. I have a more detailed and dedicated blog post to these stick foundations, which you can read here. 

The BECCA Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed Highlight in Champagne Pop is a 'soft white gold with pinky peach undertones'. It has honestly been my go to highlighter for the past couple months and a little bit goes a long way! I've had this for over a year and I have yet to hit pan. It is so buttery soft that it makes your skin look like it is glowing from within. Another powder product is the Hourglass Ambient Lighting powder in Dim Light, which I have been using to set my entire face on a daily basis. It does not provide any added coverage but I feel like it brightens up my skin and makes it look a lot smoother. It is so finely milled that it just cannot look cakey on the skin and instead it gives off a luminous finish to the skin.

On the opposite side of the spectrum, my favourite contour powder has been the Kevyn Aucoin The Sculpting powder in medium. I had heard so much about this contour powder but I never really went out of my way to pick it up. Thankfully it was in a beauty box I ordered last year and since then, it has definitely changed the way I contour. I can either use this to set my cream contour (using the ABH foundation sticks) or I can use this on it's own, for a more natural finish. Whilst it does not look very special in the small pan, it is definitely a game changer and I urge you to try it because it will change your life. The Marc Jacobs Magic Marc'er liquid eyeliner in Blacquer has been my favourite liquid eyeliner for the past couple of months. It is a felt tip liner, which I'm normally not a huge fan of because it can dry out very quickly, but this hasn't. It is incredibly pigmented and it lasts practically all day, without fading, creasing or flaking. The tip is pretty sharp and it makes creating a flick very easy to do. 

I haven't brought any beauty products for a while, simply because I'm trying to use a few products up, but I would love to know what high end beauty products you have been loving? 



Sunday, 12 March 2017

MY LONG AWAITED SKINCARE ROUTINE | 2017



Happy Sunday everyone! After being away for nearly 2 months, blogging definitely feels a little foreign right now. I decided to take a little break because I wasn't 100% into the content I was producing and I was suffering from writer's block (plus losing my memory card played a huge part into my unplanned break..but that's a whole another story!). So I thought I would come back and talk all about my current skincare routine, because I feel like I have discovered a few new 'holy grail' products. It's going to be a lengthy one so grab a cup of tea and enjoy..


Starting off with removing my makeup, I have always use an oil-based make up remover to remove my eye make up, like the Clarins Instant Eye Make-Up Remover. It helps to break the make up down a lot more quickly so I do not need to keep rubbing my eyes when using a cleanser. Speaking of a cleanser, I have been using two at the moment. The first is the Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel, which literally melts your make up and leaves your skin feeling hydrated. This gel goes through three different stages, initially it starts off as a gel, but once you start to work it into the skin, it transforms into an oil and begins to remove any impurities and dead skin cells, once in contact with water, it emulsifies and has a milk-like consistency. It contains a handful of vitamins, which helps your skin to become softer and smoother, reducing pigmentation and inflammation, along with increasing the amount of collagen in your skin. I absolutely love this cleanser.

The Sunday Riley Ceramic Slip Clay Cleanser, is fairly new to my routine and I normally use this when my skin is more clogged and oily than usual. Again, this is a gel cleanser but it is clay-based, which helps combat oily-ness. If you suffer from sensitive skin, then I would stay away from this because if I leave it on my skin a little bit too long, then it does begin to sting a little but having said that, it works wonders when my skin is breaking out. It tightens your pores whilst also purifying the skin. It leaves your skin feeling 'squeaky' clean but it definitely does not dry out your skin.

If my skin feels really clogged and just 'blah', I mix a small amount of the BareMinerals Mix. Exfoliate. Smooth. with the Sunday Riley cleanser, and it really does make a difference! My pores are no longer clogged and my skin looks a lot brighter. I then pour a small amount of the PIXI Glow Tonic onto a cotton pad and apply it all over my face and neck. I have to say, when I first initially tried the Glow Tonic, I was a little bit sceptical. I did not know if it will work for me, or even if it does work! And I'm so glad that I was proven wrong. You do not necessarily see instant results, but this is probably my third bottle and when I do not use it, I can see a difference my skin. It makes my skin look a lot brighter, any scars I may have from previous breakouts fade quickly and amount of milia I have near my eyes are decreasing.


If you have been reading my blog for a while, then the next couple of products will come to no surprise to you all. The Benefit Total Moisturise moisturiser has been my favourite for the past year or so! If you suffer from dry skin, then you need this in your life. Not only does it smell nice, but it really does work at keeping your skin hydrated and I do not feel like I need to moisturise twice in the morning. As you can see, I'm nearly out but thankfully I have a back up! The Benefit It's Potent! eye cream is thinner in consistency than the moisturiser, but a little goes a long way. I have been using this for a year now (I'm on my second jar) and I have noticed a huge difference in my dark circles. Both are absolutely amazing. Amazing. Amazing!

Onto the two products which are fairly new to me, the Ole Henriksen Truth Serum Collagen Booster has been the serum which I use in the morning, every other day. I can't use this every morning because I've noticed that any product which has a high content of Vitamin C, breaks me out if I use it frequently. The Truth Serum has been described as a daily multivitamin for your skin. It is an anti-aging serum which brightens, firms and hydrates the skin. It is also supposed to be great at boosting collagen too!


The second new product, which I use in the evenings, is the Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping night oil. It is a pricey little blue tinged retinol-rich oil (mine is a deluxe sample size) which is aimed at being a night-time treatment which helps to reduce signs of ageing. It corrects any signs of sun damage and everyday exposure to pollutants. It is also supposedly meant to reduce any fine lines or wrinkles, but thankfully, I do not have these yet so I do not know if it makes any difference. I have been using this, one and off, for about six weeks now and I find that my skin feels smoother, there are no dry patches and any redness that I had on my cheeks, has gone down.

The Mario Badescu Drying Lotion, has been my holy grail spot treatment for the past couple of years. It lasts for months and I finished my second bottle last year and just did not repurchase it, until the beginning of March and I just do not know why it took me so long! Again, I simply dip a cotton bud and apply this at night (or during the day, if I'm staying home because you can look a little weird with random pink dots on your face!) and the next morning, my breakout has either disappeared or dramatically decreased. I find that it normally takes around three days for a breakout to completely go, if it one of those angry massive volcanoes that just popped out of no where! 

So that's it! That's what I'm currently using in my skincare routine and of course I do like to try new products so this will probably change in a few months. What is your go to skincare product?

Also, if you want a more detailed review of any of the products above, then do let me know. I'm currently writing a list of blog post ideas to help me get back into blogging!

Monday, 16 January 2017

THE CREAM OF THE CROP | SMASHBOX L.A. LIGHTS TO GO

I haven't tried much from Smashbox. In fact, I think I have only tried a few eyeliners, a lip liner and maybe a mascara? But when I was browsing Boots the other week, I came across the Smashbox L.A Lights To Go kit and needless to say, I was really excited especially the highlighter.
Inside the kit, contains Hollywood & Highlight, which is a stunning light pearl, which literally melts into the skin and makes you look like you are glowing from within. I have to say that I did buy this kit, purely for the highlighter but it really is stunning!! The kit also contains a bronzer, which is the Venice Beach Bronze. It is a shimmery bronze, which is perfect to fake that summer glow. The kit also contains two shades which would be more wearable for your lips and cheeks, the first being Beverly Hills BlushBeverly Hills Blush is a deeper pink which has golden shimmer running through it. Think NARS Orgasm blush, but like any other beauty addict, they will tell you it is different. The second shade is Silver Lake Sunset, which is a peach. It is pretty sheer but on the cheeks, it looks lovely. I can imagine wearing this in the Summer for an effortless make up look.

Now these are only just mini deluxe sizes of the original (the original is 5.8g, whereas these minis are 1.1g) but they are a great way to try a few of the shades from the range. I have tried these as a lip product and I have to say that I prefer these as cheek products, simply because they last a lot longer on the skin. The full size products also come with a sponge tip applicator at the end of the bullet, which is great for touching up on the go!

Have you tried anything from Smashbox lately? I'm currently eyeing up the concealer but I need to figure out what my shade will be. Have you tried it yet?

Friday, 13 January 2017

THE ROUND UP || THE BEST OF 2016

I have been putting off from posting my ultimate favourites from the year of 2016, simply because it was hard to narrow down my favourites. I tried so many different products last year and whilst I liked the majority, nothing really made me go 'wow!'. Although, I have managed to grab sixteen of my favourite products from the year of 2016, so let's get straight into it..
Starting off with skincare, my favourite moisturiser from last year is probably no surprise to you all if you have been following me for a while, and that is the Benefit Total Moisture cream. Specifically for those who suffer with dry skin, this is an extremely thick and nourishing face cream, which instantly sinks into the skin. I am currently on my 3rd jar (or maybe it's my 4th!) and say nothing but thank you to Lauren for introducing this to me.
2016 was the year of the PIXI Glow Tonic for me. I finally gave it a go and I can see why people love it! It brightens your skin, without stripping it and if you suffer from milia, then this will help with that! The Boscia peel off masks were probably my favourite masks from last year. They are a lazy girl's dream mask and there is something satisfying about peeling off a mask, I can't explain it! The Oskia Renaissance Cleansing gel, was the one cleanser that my skin loved. It did not irritate my skin but it removed every ounce of makeup. An ultimate HG product! In terms of an exfoliate, the BareMinerals Skinsorials Mix. Exfoliate. Smooth. was my favourite. This can be added into any cleanser of your choice and because it contains both finer and coarser grains, it really gets down at making your skin smoother and getting rid of any dry patches.
On to my makeup favourites from last year and my favourite palette was the Anastasia Beverly Hills Master palette by Mario. It contains a wide variety of warm tones along with some mattes and shimmers. Whilst this came out towards the end of the year, this was my go to palette and still is my go to palette. If I wanted a dark smokey eye, or an everyday matte look, this was the palette for me. The shadows are incredibly pigmented, creamy and are an absolute dream to blend.
The STILA Stay All Day eyeliner in Intense Black, was my favourite eyeliner. I've been wearing this practically every day since I got it and it really does stay all day without flaking, fading or smudging on me. 2016 was probably the year of correctors for myself, I struggle with fairly dark under eye circles so if something can counteract it, I'm all for it! Thanks to Amy over at Benefit (in Covent Garden), she introduced me to Benefit Erase Paste. I have always overlooked this product because I didn't realise I could use it as a corrector! I use the shade 'deep' and whilst it is too orange for my skin, it definitely works wonders at concealing and cancelling out the darkness.
My favourite face powder of last year was (and still is) the Sephora 8 Hour Mattifying powder. I hit pan towards the end of the year and considering I used this every single day for the entire year, I would say that's pretty good! It is not full coverage at all, but it helps to set my concealer and I can reapply this throughout the day without looking cakey. The NARS Laguna bronzer was a rediscovery for me this year. I finished my favourite MAC bronzer and I struggled to find a product which was comparable. I decided to have a look through my make up stash before I ran out and brought a new bronzer and came across Laguna. I do not understand why I stopped using this, it is an amazing product and I can't say anything more about it!
The Buxom lip products were my favourite lip products this year. I picked these up when I was in Vegas last year and I wish I picked up more! They are incredibly creamy and just glide on your lips without tugging. Plus the lip cream in White Russian (which I know is a favourite for most people) was my ultimate go to lip gloss, no matter what look I was going for. Plus it plumps up your lips, which is a nice added touch.
My favourite hair brand of last year was Kératase. I first picked up the Kératase Fluidissime spray, which essentially is an anti-frizz spray. My hair became very frizzy last year, so I needed something which would have helped with that and this was the product that did so. It is a leave in product so I apply it when my hair is damp and sometimes I blow dry my hair afterwards but mostly, I let it air dry. This also is a heat protectant, which is amazing because I tend to straighten my hair alot! The Kératase Densifique shampoo and conditioner were recommended to me by my hair stylist. My hair can be quiet flat at times and this really helps to add more body and volume to my hair. It's absolute amazing! Also, my favourite tool from last year was my compact TangleTeezer. I love this original and I use it every single day, so a compact version was a no brainer. I keep this in my bag and as my hair tends to be really knotty, this helps to brush through those knots without breaking my hair.
Lastly, nails. My favourite nail polish brand this year is probably no surprise to anyone who knows me in real life. I rave about the Sephora Formula X nail polishes, so much so that I currently have three back ups of the top coat because I love it that much! They opaque within just one or two coats and they last on my nails for days (usually up to a week!). The Formula X ranges from mattes, cremes to shimmers and glitters. They are amazing and I wish they were more readily available here in the UK. My other nail favourite is the Red Carpet Gel Manicure set. I picked this up when it was my birthday back in September, and I feel like I was more swayed because of the limited edition Cinderella packaging...I mean, is it just stunning!!
I have never tried gel manicure at home but I enjoy getting it done, so when I saw this I just picked it up. I can honestly say that this makes no difference in terms of longevity than if you were to get your gel nails done in a salon. I can have the gel on for over two weeks, sometimes three weeks but I normally get bored of the shade and I like to change it up often.

So that's it! These are my favourite products from the year of 2016 and I do feel like I have missed out a few products but if I did, then I will mention them in my January 2017 favourites at the end of the month. What were your favourite stand out products for 2016?

Monday, 9 January 2017

NEW IN | THE ANASTASIA STICK FOUNDATIONS

Back when it was Black Friday, I made an order off from the Anastasia Beverly Hills' website. They had a few great deals going on, so I thought it would be a great chance to try her stick foundations.
Now, I've heard so many great things about the stick foundations. Everyone I speak to always raves about them so I knew I had to try it myself. I picked up three different shades (a highlight, a contour and my actual skin tone shade) and luckily the shade I chose to match my skin, was the perfect shade! In terms of packaging, the stick foundations are extremely sleek looking, with it being black and having rose gold accents, it will stand out in any persons make up bag or dressing table.
The shade which I chose to match my skin tone was 'Warm Natural' (light skin with warm undertones). I searched all over the internet, including other people's blog posts and videos and this was the shade I decided to be the best match for myself. If you are an NC30 in MAC, then this would be the perfect shade for yourself too! I then thought I should try a highlight and contour shade. I haven't quite mastered the whole highlight and contour trend, but these stick foundations make the whole job a lot easier! The 'Banana' shade is described as a 'pale yellow' and the 'Shadow shade is a 'caramel latte' shade. I apply both of these over my foundation, as I find that it looks a little bit more natural, especially the contour.
After trying these out for the last couple of weeks, I have found that they are extremely blendable and creamy. They are incredibly pigmented and provide full coverage however, they can also be sheered out, which is what I tend to prefer. It does not look cakey on the skin and once it sets, it provides a natural finish to the skin. I have been using a large kabuki brush to blend this out, however I find just using your fingers does a great job too!
I also picked up the ABH Waterproof Creme Colour in the shade Jet, which can either be a cream shadow or liner. I haven't used a gel eyeliner in years and whilst liquid eyeliners are nice, I just missed using a gel liner. I can get my 'flick' so precise and even, plus after hearing great reviews of the Waterproof Creme Colours, I knew I had to get it. It is said to not flake, fade or crease, which is definitely ideal for myself, whilst also providing a matte finish.

I have yet to try the Waterproof Creme Colour but I will definitely report back once I have. Also, ABH now ships to the UK and delivery is free over £25! Have you brought anything from ABH lately?

ABH Stick Foundation // $25 / £24
ABH Waterproof Creme Colour // $18 / £18

Monday, 2 January 2017

THE SEPHORA HAUL | CHRISTMAS x LILLE EDITION 2016

 Last year (wow that feels weird to say!), I went to Lille for work and whilst I was in Lille, my first point of call was going to the mothership Sephora! And I know what you're all thinking, another Sephora haul?! But you just posted one! Your last post was a Sephora haul too!! And I know, I have a problem but it's a mini haul...minuscule! And I wanted to get it up because a few people have been asking what I brought on Twitter and Instagram (follow me!). 
So onto the haul, the Sephora I went into was pretty small but I managed to pick up everything I wanted. I have been going through my entire beauty stash and I have made it a point of using everything up. I still do not understand how I have 6 bottles of hairspray, when I don't use it on a daily basis?! I first picked up two more bottles of my favourite topcoat by Formula X. I already had a spare but I thought I'd get two more bottles because I wouldn't know what to do when I have run out! The Formula X top coat is very glossy but it dries very fast. It makes your manicure almost gel like, and I especially like that it makes my manicure last a lot longer. I can go with about a week without any chipping or fading, which is great!!
I then went past the Marc Jacobs stall and whilst eyeing everything up, I remember testing the Marc Jacobs Genius Gel foundation when I was in Vegas and liking it, but they didn't have my shade. Thankfully, they had my shade and I have been using it every day since. It is a very dewy foundation, which doesn't even feel like foundation at all! It provides a very natural finish to the skin and just melts and blends into the skin effortlessly. I would say that it provides medium coverage but it definitely can be built up, without looking cakey on the skin. It also contains an antioxidant vitamin which is supposed to 'awaken your skin's radiance and clarity'. I picked up the shade Beige Light 32, and it is the perfect shade for me. It doesn't make my skin look too dark or orange, as some foundations can oxidise on my skin a little and once it sets, it is set. I can touch my face without having the foundation transfer to my finger tips. A winner in my book! 

I also picked up the Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Major volume mascara. I've seen this in action and it looks absolutely amazing! Just think, instant false lash effect. I have yet to try this out, but will definitely report back once I have! The last two products I picked up are lip related. I picked up another Sephora Lip Liner to go. I have a few of these liners already and they are probably my favourite. They are very long lasting and do not dry out your lips.  I picked up the shade 'Deep Beige' which is similar to MAC Spice lip liner, but is only for a fraction of the price! Another product which is only a fraction of the price, is the Sephora Colour Reveal lip balm, which is very similar to the Dior Addict lip balm. It changes colour once you've applied it and turns into the perfect pink for everyone. This is a repeat purchase as it was probably the first product I ever brought from Sephora years ago!

Have you brought anything from Sephora lately? Or what was your favourite beauty buy of 2016?? I'd love to know! And I think I'm all Sephora-ed out and I definitely will not be making another order any time soon!