Saturday, 28 December 2013

Sephora Haul

I'm coming at you now with Part 2 of my Paris haul, this time it's the Sephora Edition. I was only in Paris for 4 days, yet I can't even count the number of times I walked up and down the aisles of Sephora (note to any of you Paris goers: while the Champs-Élysées branch is massive, the one on Rue de Rivoli is still quite large, yet much less busy and easier to shop in!). I had planned what I wanted to buy before I went, making it less likely for me to go crazy and buy everything in sight (although just one thing was a little impulse purchase). 

 Starting with the most exciting purchase, I caved and bought a NARS palette, the At First Sight palette. Even though I already have a mini of the Laguna, that didn't stop me from buying this, complete with a Deep Throat blusher, Laguna bronzer and four eyeshadows which, surprisingly, work well together. I can't want to experiment with this little bad boy!

 Make Up For Ever is a brand whose makeup I've never tried before, yet this Full Cover concealer has been on my list for months! So when the cashier handed me a 20% off voucher when she found out I was a foreign customer, I knew that this was next to be purchased. This is definitely a high coverage product, concealing those pesky little spots and scars that have been driving me crazy. It's a well-loved addition to my life!

I've never tried the BeautyBlender makeup sponge before, but this Sephora 3D Precision Sponge was an impulse purchase while waiting to pay. I've tried it a couple of times and I'm quite impressed, but the fact that it is white makes my inner obsessive writhe every time I use it to blend foundation- I can see that it will be tough to clean.

I have a rollerball of this perfume, Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb and it smells beautiful, literally it could be one of my favourite perfumes ever. And that means a lot coming from me, the owner of 30+ perfumes. It smells amazing and the bottle is something I'm proud to put on my shelf- you'll definitely be hearing more about this!

I'm not sure if this counts as a purchase, but as a new member of the Sephora rewards card, I was able to choose a free nail polish from their own line. I chose this salmon-pink colour in 'Have U Ever' and as I type, I am sporting it on my nails. It may not be the most winter-appropriate colour but I am determined to test out its 5 Day Shine claims. 

I know this wasn't the largest haul ever but I'm very satisfied with my purchases, makeup from Sephora and skincare from City Pharma, I am a very happy girl!  
On another note, I have quite a few exams coming up so I'm sorry if I'm a bit AWOL over the next couple of weeks, studies call!

Friday, 20 December 2013

Mini City Pharma Haul

I come to you now from Paris, just off Champs-Élysées, in fact! Being in Paris, I couldn't resist a trip to City Pharma just a couple of hours after arriving and checking into my hotel.
It was an absolute blur- from the outside it just appeared like a normal French pharmacy but upon entering, I realised it was a lot more. There were shelves upon shelves of Bioderma, Vichy, La Roche Posay and many more! It was a beautiful sight, I just admit. 
There were so many people in its narrow aisles, so it was difficult to move around and have a browse. I could barely handle it so I just got my 4 desired products and ran for the till.

I got the limited edition L'Wren Scott Caudalie Beauty Elixir in the full size, as my mini is running out and I really liked it as a refreshing mist. This would cost over £30 in the UK but was just €26, about £21!

I then purchased the La Roche-Posay Serozinc, which is a toner that aims to soothe yet cleanse, specifically for sensitive skin. I've heard a lot about this and I'm excited to try it out!

How could I leave Paris without trying the infamous Nuxe Rêve de Miel lip balm? It's a really thick and ultra-moisturising balm and I was happy to find out that it doesn't overpower me with the smell of honey (a smell I hate). I can see this little pot lasting me a very long time. 

I've heard a lot about Phyto and I've wanted to try them for a long time, but with such a large product range I just didn't know where to start. In one of the discount baskets, I saw this mini Phytokératine set for just €4.99, a perfect way to try the brand for my weak and frizzy hair. 

As I was leaving the cashier handed me some samples, which I, of course, was very glad to receive. A couple of sachets of Darphin Anti-Age Smoothing Fluid. I do't need anti-aging products but I'm sure my mum will be happy to take it from me!
I then got a couple of mini bottles of Uriage Hyséac K (which I think is meant to be very similar to the Effaclar products) for oily skin with blocked pores. 
I'm sure this is just the first haul of many more to come, however I'm sorry about the bad quality photos/writing. I decided to take a break from my laptop, only bringing my phone, and so this is currently my blogging device. Hopefully the elegance of Paris will shine through in my posts? Ok then, maybe not..
Some things crossed off my list, but I'm still hoping to grab a few more things- Sephora, I'm coming for you. 

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Le Blanc de Chanel

Le Blanc de Chanel - £31
I found this little gem while poking around through my mum's makeup stash a while ago and she offered to let me keep it- thanks, mum! At first I wasn't completely sure as to what it was, I just knew it smelt like what makeup used to smell like- one whiff and I was taken back to my childhood- and I was meant to put it on my face. After a bit of research I finally came to the conclusion that it was a primer/highlighter hybrid.

I like the packaging from an aesthetic point of view as it's sleek and looks lovely in my collection, however it's quite impractical. The opening is very wide, and accident-prone me will probably spill it sometime in the near future. My mum tossed away the spatula that came with it a while ago so I have to tip it onto the back on my hand.

I apply it before foundation, giving a certain level of luminosity to my skin, without looking like I've just been dunked in a pile of glitter. It's a very thin liquid but a little goes a long way, making the price tag a bit easier to stomach. I absolutely love the finish this gives my skin, as well as making my foundation last that little bit longer.

Monday, 16 December 2013

NARS Orgasm/Laguna Duo

L-R Orgasm blusher, Laguna bronzer

 My first delve into NARS' cheek products has to be an exciting one, with the holy grail Laguna bronzer and the Orgasm blusher. This is just a mini duo that came with the Sephora Superstars set, but it's more than enough for me!
With the classic NARS packaging this is a sleek little compact which is easy to take on the go- literally small enough to throw in your handbag. 

Orgasm is described as a "peachy pink with shimmer" and is a truly beautiful colour. It adds a lovely pink glow to the cheeks, without looking like you've just been on a run. Similarly, Laguna, though it has some shimmer in it, works really well to add warmth to the face but not too overpowering. Laguna is raved about by many a-blogger and YouTuber, and I certainly was not disappointed. I was a little apprehensive because of the shimmer in it but it doesn't really show up, or if it does, I haven't noticed it! 

The first thing I noticed upon swatching these was just how soft they are. They're so easy to blend and apply, which is an especially good trait for Laguna to have, because an unblended bronzer can just look quite dirty on the skin.

They also last for so long, literally all day. I don't know what they do or how they do it but NARS have definitely got this down!

The only real downsides are how dirty the packaging gets, but it's something I can learn to live by. I mean, really, does anyone mind that much if there are a few finger marks on your makeup? It's small price to pay for the good quality of the product!

As this is a mini I can sometimes find it hard to get a brush into the actual pan without going into the pan next to it. It requires some manoeuvring which is a little annoying but, again, nothing I can't deal with.

Saturday, 14 December 2013

Winter Nails

L-R: OPI Malaga Wine, OPI Suzi & the 7 Dusseldorfs, Nails inc. Holland Park Avenue, Kate Spade Nails inc. Soho Silver, Revlon Moon Candy Orbit, Essie Aruba Blue, Urban Decay Creep
Now that it's winter not only has my clothes wardrobe changed, but so has my nail wardrobe! It's all about the deeper, darker colours during the day, like OPI Malaga Wine and Suzi & the 7 Dusseldorfs. They're beautiful shades that, to me, seem to exude warmth and cosiness.
If you're not wanting to go for as much colour, you could always pop a bit of Nails inc. Holland Park Avenue on, being a rich taupe-y colour that you can't go wrong with.

For the evening parties, maybe you're feeling a bit of glitz and glamour, and these four picks are definitely good for that! Kate Spade for Nails inc. Soho Silver is a lovely opaque silver and Essie Aruba Blue is a metallic electric blue, but is not once that would necessarily match everything you wear. 

For those feeling a bit more adventurous, Revlon Moon Candy in Orbit is the way to go, with a purple on one side and a glittery top coat on the other side, making for effortless but gorgeous nails. 

A bit more classic, Urban Decay Creep is a glittery black, which looks lovely when layered on but otherwise is a bit sheer, needing at least 3 coats before looking opaque. 

Just remember to pop on a good top coat before you go out- nobody likes chipped nails!

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Benefit Hydra-Smooth

ASOS is a dangerous place. I was just browsing the website, looking for some inspiration, and before I knew it I was entering my card details for this little bad boy, the Benefit Hydra-Smooth Lip Colour. 

I've been wanting to try these lipsticks out since they came out but I just didn't feel like I should spend £15 on a lipstick when I don't really wear them that much, but I had a 20% off code and the rest is history!

Now, it was a bit risky as I hadn't swatched this particular shade before but after a bit of scouring through some blogs, I came to the conclusion that 'Lip Service' was the shade for me. It is described as a pink-peach and as being one of their Sheer Coverage lipsticks, which is perfect for me as somebody who isn't very bold in my lip colour choices!

The lasting power isn't great, but that's the sacrifice for a formula which doesn't dry out the lips. I love this as an everyday lip colour, but it can be made a bit more bold with the help of Cha Cha Tint or Benefit.

The slight disappointment is practicality of the packaging, although absolutely gorgeous! I do love the style of the container and it looks lovely on my shelf, but the lid can fall off very easily if not clipped on properly. Also, upon application the top of it can get a little messy so it has to be wiped with a tissue or a cotton bud.

Overall, I'm really impressed with Benefit's lipstick offering! A beautiful handbag companion that can just as equally be used for nights out, I'd love to pick up more shades. 

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

The Beauty Blogger Tag

Although I've been blogging since May, I am yet to do a tag post (without counting The Liebster Award) so I thought, what better first tag to do than 'The Beauty Blogger'!


  • tag the creator of the tag - The Beau Bow
  • tag some more beauty blogger you want to do the tag
  • title your post ''The Beauty Blogger Tag''
  • answer the questions
1. Name the beauty routine you barely do!

I have never used fake lashes, because I've never had an occasion that warrants the use of them, especially since I'm still fairly young! I also forget to use highlighter every day, it's something that may just pop into my mind that I'll do but it's not an every day thing!

2. Is washing your make up brushes something you regularly do?
I don't actually have that many brushes so if I've used one for about 5 days then I'll most likely do a spot clean, but every month/month and a half (I know, that's really bad!) I'll do a deep clean. 

3. How long will you last with chipped nail varnish?
It depends on how badly chipped it is, and how much time I have! If I'm rushed for time, it will most likely be a couple of days but if I have spare time, I'll change it as soon as I can

4. How long do you put off buying/replacing a beauty or nail polish product even if you need it (ie. top coat, foundation, etc.)?
Again, it depends on which product it is, nail polish remover is an essential but for something like foundation, I wouldn't mind going a few days without, provided I still had concealer and powder. 

5. What is your worst beauty habit?
I may have a tendency to leave waterline eyeliner on when I sleep, which isn't very good but sometimes I'm too tired and it's not my priority!

6. Name something non-beauty related you put off doing all the time?
I always put off learning work I have for school, like vocab or grammar, because if I don't have to write it it'll be put at the back of my mind, something that I don't prioritise.

7. When going out somewhere do you leave getting ready to the last minute or not?
I really like to take my time when I'm getting ready, giving myself a good few hours to moisturise everywhere, and just generally primping and pampering myself so I can relax. Although sometimes this plan backfires and I end up rushing because I've been too lax with how much time I left myself!

8. Can you commit to spending bans?
No, I don't think so, I may stop going to Boots or Superdrug as much but on a trip to the supermarket I may be inclined to pop a face wash or two in my shopping cart!

9. How organised is your makeup and nail polish collection?
I'm still in the process of trying to find something that works for me, I recently invested in a lovely set of drawers that is deep enough for me to put foundations in! As for nail polish, I have my collection just in a mini cupboard behind my mirror, but as much as I try to sort it out it just seems to get messy so quickly.

10. What is the longest time you have gone without writing a blog post? 
Upon checking my blog post dates I just realised it was 12 days. Wow. I think my school work has just been piling up and I had to prioritise that, hopefully it will never be that long again! (However, I do have exams coming up so that may be a slight distraction- would anybody want to do a guest post? Comment below if you're up for it!)

I tag anybody reading this to do this tag!

Monday, 9 December 2013

Dior Crème de Rose

Dior Crème de Rose - £20
As you can tell from the pictures above, this Dior Crème de Rose lip balm has been very well loved by me, being a thick, moisturising lip balm which is rose-scented (hence the name!). Some people may find it overpowering but I don't find it to be too strong of a scent.

The formulation is very creamy and so it works absolute wonders on my lips, even in the brutally cold weather we're experiencing at the moment. It's lovely to wear a light layer during the day, if your lips are particularly cracked, but I generally opt for a thick layer before I sleep, letting it do its work while I sleep.

However, at the steep price of £20 (£17 on Escentual) it's definitely a splurge item- perhaps one for the Christmas list?

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Skincare Saviours

 During this period of transition to the colder, winter months I've been making more of an effort to protect my skin from the harsh cold and these 3 products have been my skincare saviours, rescuing my skin from both the dreadful weather and horrible breakouts.

Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser - £13.25
 The well-known Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser has been a cult cleanser for a long time now, but I only got to try it a few months ago. My sister bought it for me as a treat, but she forgot the muslin cloth- not a huge problem, as I have other face cloths. 
It's a soothing, creamy cleanser that can be used both in the morning and the evening, guaranteeing to clear up my breakouts in a few days.

Caudalie Beauty Elixir - £11
Many people have tried and tested the Caudalie Beauty Elixir before and come to the conclusion that it does nothing, and that's what I thought when I first tried it. But then I realised, when I use it, in the mornings in particular, it's really refreshing. On top of that, when concentrated on any breakouts, the ingredients in it really calm them down. 

Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil - $14
While not a product that is readily available in the UK, the Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil is a multi-purpose product, but I love using it as a serum at night. Even with my oily skin, a couple of drops a night before my moisturiser leaves my skin looking as revitalised and plump as ever.

Sunday, 1 December 2013

#BritishBloggerSelection Favourite Makeup Brand

I've run a bit behind in my #BritishBloggerSelection posts but I hope everyone can agree to think by the 'better late than never' way of mind! This week's theme (or last week's, I'm not sure) is/was is 'Favourite Makeup Brand', especially fitting since my blog is beauty oriented. In case it wasn't obvious from the rest of my posts my favourite makeup brand is Benefit!

They have just got it all going on- face products, eye products and lip products, skincare and even perfume! The only niggle I have with them is they are pretty expensive, but then again the quality is just great so it doesn't work out too badly.

I would do reviews on all of my Benefit products but, boy, would that be a long post, so instead I've made a little wish list of some of the products I'm lusting after from Benefit.

Stay Flawless 15 Hour Primer - Although I have many primers at the moment, I've really been wanting to try this out. The packaging looks really interesting and I've heard good reviews about it.

Hoola - I've wanted this bronzer for such a long time but, not being a huge bronzer person, I didn't want to invest in the full-size. I've seen a few little sets around with minis of it so I may have to grab one of those!

World Famous Neutrals Most Glamourous Nudes Ever - This a beautiful palette, with cream and power eyeshadows. It's so small and compact, which would make it easy for travelling. 

Watts Up! - I've swatched this countless times and it's a beautiful shimmer, which would be perfect for highlighting. I really want to get this soon, and I hope I do!

That's just a little overview of my favourite makeup brand, Benefit, and I'm sure you'll be hearing more about them in the future, as I try out more and more of their products (if my bank account will let me...).