Wednesday, 30 July 2014

What's In My Bag

I absolutely love reading these types of posts - I'm naturally quite a curious person and I love to see what my favourite bloggers carry around in their bags, so I thought it was about time I shared the contents of mine with you all. I try to keep my bag as organised as possible and only take with me what I need, I'm sure I'm not the only one that is guilty of carrying half of their lipstick collection and other unnecessary items around with them sometimes!

My make up choices change often depending on what I'm wearing on my face that day, but I never leave the house without concealer, blusher and some lipstick. I always carry the Clinique Airbrush Concealer (£19), it's perfect for touch ups as it's so easy to apply and doesn't cake one bit. Blushers and lipsticks seem to fade the most on me over the day, and at the moment I've been wearing the Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush (£23) in the shade Dollface, a super pretty shade that never fails to perk up my complexion. I'm obsessed with my MAC Lipstick in Peach Blossom (£15.50)  at the moment, it's a lovely pinky nude and is the perfect everyday shade, plus the formula keeps my lips soft and nourished too.

I used to always rely on powder to control shine throughout the day, but now I just take some blotting papers out with me instead. I love these Deep Action Mattifying Shine Control Papers (£2.59) from Superdrug, they're so affordable and I can't believe how well they absorb excess oil! My make up always seems to slide off my nose after a few hours, especially in this heat, so I've been using the Benefit POREfessional (£24.50), one of my favourite primers as it minimises the appearance of pores and leaves my skin looking flawless and shine free. 

I tend to take a small can of hairspray and a brush with me too, my hair is so long and thick and tangles quite easily, so I make sure I always have these so my hair always looks tidy. I've been using the Silvikrin Hairspray Max (£1.49) since my teen years, I only use hairspray on my fringe to keep it in place and this works like a dream to give my style natural hold and doesn't feel sticky. Other beauty essentials that I always carry in my bag are the Real Techniques Blush Brush (£9.99) for applying my Tarte blush, and the iconic Shu Uemura Eyelash Curlers (£20). My eyelashes always stay curled when I use these in the morning anyway, but I still like to use them through the day to give my lashes more oomph and make my eyes look more awake. 

My non beauty essentials include my phone, headphones (I can't travel on public transport without music), my purse, keys and my passport as it's the only form of ID that I have. I've been carrying my sunglasses with me too as the weathers been really nice at the moment, even though as I type this it's overcast and raining outside....thats's typical Glasgow for you. I'll also take some perfume with me, my favourite is the Miss Dior perfume (£54.50), the scent is just divine and the bottle is beautiful.

What do you carry in your bag?


Saturday, 26 July 2014

The Body Shop Vitamin C Microdermabrasion

The Body Shop is one of those stores that when I go in to repurchase  something, I end up leaving with new skin care products that I never planned on buying. On my last visit, I was drawn to the brands Vitamin C Microdermabrasion (£14) as the packaging reminded me a little of the Origins GinZing range (which I'm a huge fan of). Being a girl with oily skin also means my complexion can often look a little dull and lifeless too, so I decided to give this a try.

The formula is made up of fine exfoliating particles and crushed garnet stones which work to remove dead skin cells, revealing a brighter and more radiant complexion. Along with that, it also boasts skin friendly ingredients like shea butter and Amazonian camu camu, which is rich in vitamin C. I take a generous amount of this and smooth it over my face when it's wet, and using circular motions I massage it into my skin for a few minutes, then rinse with warm water.  It doesn't feel harsh or rough like many exfoliaters, the texture is really thick and creamy and even though you can feel the little grains from the crushed garnet stones, it still feels so lovely and gentle on the skin. In fact, I would say it's one of the most gentle exfoliaters I've ever used. The scent is very calming but zingy and the end result is glowy, fresh skin that's oh so soft and smooth to touch. 

I'm so happy I decided to pick this up; I've been using this twice a week for the last month now and I've noticed such an improvement in the texture and tone of my skin. My dull looking complexion looks revived and so much healthier and brighter with every use. I highly recommend you give this a try if your skin is looking a bit dull.

Have you tried this? 


Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Dirty Looks HK Full Head Hair Extensions

I've been on a hair growing mission for the last couple of years now, and while I'm really happy with the length of my tresses, they still have a bit to go until they reach the length I've been dreaming of. I'd never considered hair extensions before, so when I was contacted by Dirty Looks asking me if I would like to try some out, I was intrigued. 

Dirty Looks are a hair extension stockist that only stock the best extensions within the hair industry. These hair extensions are of the highest quality and made with 100% human remy hair, and are available in a choice of shades, lengths and thickness to help create your perfect style. I was sent the HK Full Head Hair Extensions (£69.99- £124.99) in the shade 'Liquorice' which matches my hair colour perfectly, I love how the extensions blend effortlessly into my own hair - they look so natural! As my natural hair is pretty long already, I asked if they could send me the the longest extensions they had available, which are 24-26" in length. These add the perfect amount of length to my hair and give my locks so much more volume and a lot of 'oomph'.

The full set of extensions comes with ten wefts of hair, including a test piece which is packaged separately so you don't have to open the main part of the set.  This means you can check the colour is the perfect match for your hair, and if not you can return the extensions and get a full refund. 

Each weft is labelled with a number and there's a guide included in the box that clearly demonstrates where each weft should be fitted into the hair. It's really simple to follow, and as someone that's never used hair extensions before I managed to put them in successfully first time round. I split my hair into sections, starting at the lower nape and working my way up and around the sides of my head, placing each weft where it should be. I found it useful to lightly backcomb my hair and add some hair spray to the section of hair where I'm placing the extension; this ensures there's a stronger grip for the clips to grip onto so they feel more secure.

As these extensions are made from real human hair, they can be washed and styled in the same way as your natural hair. I've only worn these extensions once so I haven't had to wash them yet, but I did straighten them with my ghd's as they had a slight curl at the ends of them when I removed them from the packaging. They're so easy to style, my ghd's glide through them with minimal effort.

Overall, I'm seriously impressed with these hair extensions. The quality of them is incredible, they're so silky and shiny and look and feel so natural. They have over twenty shades to choose from on their website, so there's a colour to suit everyone. 

What do you think of these? Are you a fan of hair extensions?

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Topshop Lipstick in Macaroon

I've always been such a big fan of Topshops make up line, I remember when it first launched and I was so excited to see what the clothing brand had to offer. Their products are seriously impressive and such good quality for the price, everything I've tried has always left me wanting to add more and more to my make up collection. 

Out of all their make up, the lipsticks are my favourite - they have such a variety of shades that you're almost spoilt for choice. I placed an order online a few weeks ago and purchased the shade Macaroon (£8) along with a few other bits and bobs I treated myself to. It's a pretty, slightly nude pink that's quite understated, but it still manages to stand out and looks lovely against my fair complexion. It creates a velvety smooth finish that glides on to the lips with ease, leaving them feeling soft and nourished. I find the finish more flattering if I dab a little bit of lip balm on my lips before applying; the formula can be quite drying and even though the texture is really creamy, the colour tends to cling to any dry patches and makes them really noticeable. Not the look I'm going for! Saying that, I don't mind having to do this as I love the colour and for £8, you can't really turn it down.

Are you a fan of Topshop lipsticks? What do you think of this shade?


Thursday, 17 July 2014

My Eyebrow Routine

One of the things I'm always asked about are my eyebrows, so I thought it was about time I put together a step by step guide on how I do mine and what products I use to make them appear naturally fuller and more defined. I was never that bothered about my brows until a few years ago; my fringe used to be much longer and just skimmed the top of my eye lashes, so my brows were always forgotten about and hidden from the world. That was until I had an unfortunate incident with a pair of hair scissors and cut my fringe way too short....but I guess you could call it a happy accident as I actually loved the change, and that's when the obsession with my brows began. Since then I've tried and tested my fair share of brow products, but I've finally settled on a simple routine that I'm really happy with that only takes five minutes to do.

So as you can see, my brows need a bit of work to make them look a lot fuller and more defined. I went a bit crazy with the tweezers during my teen years and some of the hairs just never grew back, especially at the tail end where there's not much hair at all. I wouldn't say my brows were thin, but they're nowhere near as full as they normally look. I start by using an eyebrow brush to separate and smooth the hairs, I do this by combing them in an upward motion to create more of an arch; doing so in this way allows me to achieve such a great shape to my brows.

I then use an eyebrow pencil and start penciling in at the tail end where the hairs should be. I use the Rimmel Professional Eyebrow Pencil (£2.99) in the shade black/brown. This was actually the first product I ever used to fill in my brows, I love it as it's so affordable and such good quality, but I often find that only using a pencil to fill in my brows leaves them looking quite harsh and unnatural, so this is why I only use it at the tail end.

Then it's on to the main product; the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Powder Duo (£17). Powder is definitely my preferred method of eyebrow application and if there's one brand that knows brows, it's Anastasia Beverly Hills.  This duo consists of a pair of complimentary shades that provide sheer to medium coverage- I use the shade Ebony which suits me perfectly as I prefer my brows to be a more browny/black colour. I don't really change the shape of my brows, I simply just work with what I've got by enhancing them and creating more definition. I take my Angled Cut Brow Brush (£13), blend the two shades together and go over my brows delicately to make them appear fuller and add more colour where needed. I tend to start around the middle, carefully stroking the brush through the hairs to make them look more bold, then work along the length and down to the tail end. I'll then move to the start of the brow and use light strokes to fill in any gaps. 

Lastly, I finish by using my eyebrow brush again to comb through and set them in place. The end result is lovely, natural and defined looking brows. Told you it was quick and easy didn't I?

What do you think of my routine? Have you used any of these products?

Monday, 14 July 2014

Bumble and bumble Straight Blow Dry

Being a girl with ridiculously frizzy hair (and a lot of it at that), I need a little help when it comes to styling and keeping my locks straight and smooth. I've tried my fair share of straightening products to try and tame my mane and make it more manageable, but none have ever compared to the incredible Bumble and bumble Straight Blow Dry. I've been using this for a good while now and thought it was about time to share my love for this styling product with you all.

Bumble and bumble Straight Blow Dry (£25) is a heat activated styling balm that smooths and straightens the hair, leaving it soft, sleek and more manageable with every use. The brands smoothing range features their very own formula that contains the magical sounding ingredient gemstone, which helps to loosen the hairs natural waves once you apply heat. This can be used throughout all of the hair but I prefer to use it only where I need it most. You only apply this to damp hair, so after washing I squeeze a small amount out the tube, rub it between my hands and work it evenly down the lengths and through my fringe. Even though my hair is extremely thick and long, a small amount goes a long way with this product. I then divide my hair into sections and blow dry it straight using a round brush, and finish by running my ghd's through my hair for a sleek finish.

This is the only styling product I use in my hair at the moment, it makes styling my hair an absolute dream! Blow drying and straightening is so effortless when I use this; it transforms my frizzy, unmanageable mane leaving it silky smooth and soft. My hair stays straight and sleek all day and looks beautifully healthy with a gorgeous shine. It's a bit more expensive than other styling products out there, but Bumble and bumble are such an amazing brand and their products never fail to produce incredible results.

Are you a fan of Bumble and bumble? Have you tried this?

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Skin Care For Oily Skin #2

I love discovering and testing new skin care products for my oily skin, I feel like I've become quite the expert in picking the best products that work so well and are really effective. Here are a few products that I'm currently using...

I did a full review of this amazing cleanser just recently, I’m using it as my morning cleanser at the moment and I love how purifying and refreshing it is! It works to keep the skin balanced by removing excess oil and impurities that clog the skin, leaving the complexion looking so clear and healthy. It’s bursting with all natural ingredients and leaves my skin feeling super cleansed and squeaky clean every time I use it. Foaming cleansers can leave the skin feeling uncomfortable and stripped of moisture, but this stuff only ever leaves my skin feeling lovely and soft. This has definitely become one of my favourite cleansers; I’m so pleased with the results and my complexion has been looking so healthy and radiant lately.

This is a product that I see myself repurchasing over and over again; it’s a clay mask that works in ten minutes to deeply cleanse and decongest the skin. It works wonders on my oily complexion and does an incredible job unclogging my pores and lifting away any dirt and grime, leaving my skin looking balanced and clear. This is the perfect mask if your skin is in need of a detox, it feels really cooling and every time I use it I notice such an improvement in my complexion – it gives it such a boost! I use this once a week and I really couldn’t go without it.

This is an oil controlling moisturiser that helps to balance and purify the skin, while tightening pores and helping to obtain a long lasting, shine free complexion. I love this as it's so light and absorbs into the skin quickly and doesn’t feel heavy or greasy at all. I can be pretty hard to please when it comes to moisturisers but this one suits all my requirements; it’s oil free, hydrating and doesn’t feel too rich on my skin. It feels lovely and refreshing once applied and gives my skin a healthy, natural glow and evens out my complexion, giving it a matte appearance that lasts for hours. If that wasnt enough, it wakes up my skin and makes it look so radiant too! It’s been so hot in Glasgow recently and this has been keeping my oily skin in check.

I don't feel like I've mentioned this scrub much on my blog, which is surprising as I can't praise it enough and it never fails to leave my skin so clear and fresh. This water based scrub sloughs away dead skin cells and impurities, instantly brightening my complexion and giving it a healthy glow. My skin can look really dull sometimes, but this helps to transform my skin from looking lifeless to bright and smooth. I use this once or twice a week before applying a face mask, it also contains menthol which leaves my skin feeling so cool and unbelievably fresh. 

Have you tried any of these?

Monday, 7 July 2014

Dior Matte and Luminous Hydrating Loose Powder

Say hello to a new favourite of mine, the Dior Matte and Luminous Hydrating Loose Powder (£33.50). My make up never feels complete without a dusting of powder to set it in place; it's an essential step in my make up routine and I never, ever skip it. On a recent browsing session in House of Fraser, this caught my eye and after trying it in store, I had to purchase it.

Used as a setting powder over the rest of my make up, this dreamy product feels so weightless on the skin and is oh so soft to the touch. It comes equipped with a powder puff, but I prefer to tip a small amount of the powder into the inside of the lid and use a fluffy face brush to lightly sweep over my face. Loose powders are known for being extremely messy and a bit of a nightmare to use, but the clever design of this packaging only allows a small amount to be dispensed so there's no waste. This is available in three shades, ranging from light to dark tones. I was advised to get the lightest shade (no surprises there) and it suits my skin tone perfectly. 

The finish of this is just beautiful; it blends with the skins natural skin tone to leave my complexion looking perfected and so flawless. It really does help to create a lovely, soft-focus finish that leaves my skin naturally matte with a healthy glow. I find that some mattifying powders can make the complexion look dry, flat and lifeless, but this powder contains particles that reflect light to make the skin look radiant. I've never used a powder like this before that feels so comfortable and fresh on my skin; it doesn’t cake one bit and keeps shine under control too. 

The price is a little off putting, but you only need a small amount and I can honestly see this lasting me forever. It's not the most practical powder to carry around for touch ups either, but I still adore the packaging and I love the results!

Have you tried this?

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Lush Ultimate Shine Shampoo Bar

I'm slowly working my way through everything Lush has to offer at the moment, and lately I've been trying out their Ultimate Shine Shampoo Bar  (£5.50). My hair is so long and thick right now and I go through shampoo so quickly because of this, so when I read that these small bars can last up to eighty washes, I was intrigued. 

These solid shampoo bars are really easy to use; you just use them in the same way as you would use liquid shampoo. I massage the bar into my scalp and through the rest of my hair, stroking it down the lengths to work into a lather. I was so surprised from first use at how well these lather up, I definitely used more than I had to the first few times I washed my hair with this. These practical little bars are said to be the equivalent of around two to three regular sized shampoo bottles as they don't contain water and are highly concentrated. I must say I agree with this as I can go through a bottle of shampoo in a week (I wash my hair every day) and this bar has lasted me just over three weeks! Pretty impressive indeed.

Like all Lush products, this shampoo bar is bursting with natural ingredients and essential oils, including Emeli Oil, Ylang Ylang and Floral Violet which are all great for the scalp as they keep it balanced and in good condition. My hair is always left with a natural, beautiful shine after I use this and feels oh so fresh and soft to touch. The only downside to this product is the smell. I wouldn't say it was horrendous, but I do like shampoos to have a gorgeous scent. Saying that, my conditioner replaces the odd smell that the shampoo bar leaves behind. 

I'm very tempted to try the other shampoo bars that Lush has to offer, they are such good value for money as they are so long lasting, plus they are economical and produce amazing results too. 

What do you think of shampoo bars?
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