Whilst I love buying makeup, there is nothing I love more than buying fresh makeup brushes. I have always said that I would rather buy a new brush than wash an old one but unfortunately I'm not made of money so I don't buy them regularly but when I do, there is nothing I like more than seeing a fresh makeup brush all clean and sparkling new in its packaging.

I feel like whenever I buy new eyeshadow brushes, my eyeshadow application dramatically improves. A couple of years ago I applied my eyeshadow with ELF brushes and they were fine. Then I moved onto Morphe and Spectrum brushes and suddenly my makeup skillzz dramatically improved, even though I was using exactly the same products. I used to buy really cheap brushes and whilst they can be okay, I have learnt to pay a little bit more to get a more quality application and product.

I was recently in Selfridges in London and came across a whole section of Zoeva makeup products. I had no idea Selfrisges was a stockist for Zoeva so of course I couldn't resist a makeup brush purchase or two! I really wanted to buy a couple of the palettes as well as I know they are so highly spoken about but do I really need another soft neutral palette? Not right now so I decided to buy two pretty much identical eyeshadow brushes instead! They didn't have the rose gold versions just the standard original black handles but a brush is a brush so I went for the Zoeva 228 Luxe Crease Brush & the Zoeva 221 Luxe Soft Crease Brush.

About the Zoeva 228 Luxe Crease Brush:
"The ideal beauty tool for creating perfectly defined, radiant eyes, 228 Luxe Crease Brush is an essential makeup brush for professional crease definition and a perfect eye contour. Designed to effortlessly blend eye shadow and shade colour transitions, 228 Luxe Crease Brush has a unique fluffy design which fits into the contours of the eyelid crease and takes the edge off colour."

About the Zoeva 221 Luxe Soft Crease Brush:
"It's all in the details when it comes to professional looking eye makeup; 221 Luxe Soft Crease Brush allows you to create stunning ombre effects and create the smoothest transitions from light to dark with your favourite eye shadow."

The Zoeva 228 Luxe Crease Brush and the 221 Luxe Soft Crease Brush both look pretty damn similar. Both are designed to fit into the crease of the eye and to blend eyeshadow out effortlessly. The only difference between them is that the 221 brush is more rounded whereas the 228 is pointed. Both blend out eyeshadow perfectly in the crease of the eye so there is no such thing as a bad makeup day when you use either of these two - or no unblended out eyeshadow, anyway! My eye makeup is my favourite part of doing my makeup and I have definitely improved when it comes to blending and applying liquid eyeliner. Whilst I am no Instagram guru and won't be filming any makeup tutorials any time soon, I do get asked about my eyeshadow and how I apply it and all I can say is blend blend blend!

I really love both of these brushes as they both make the application of eyeshadow ever so easy. They are both really soft to the touch and on the eyes without being scratchy or irritable and they are great quality. They are perfect at defining and contouring the eyes and blend all eyeshadows out effortlessly. If you have been after a really fluffy crease brush then I definitely recommend either of these two as they will work wonders for your makeup!


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Review | Zoeva 228 Luxe Crease & 221 Luxe Soft Crease Brushes

When your sister comes home from university bearing gifts wrapped up in a Jo Malone bag, there is no doubt that the gift inside will be a much loved one. I've been feeling a bit down recently so my sister very kindly decided to treat me to a few little luxuries in order to cheer me up and boy, did it work.

Inside the Jo Malone bag, within a box wrapped ever so beautifully was the heavenly Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin Scent Surround Room Spray which smells just as delightful as it sounds. I have only tried candles and cologne from Jo Malone before and whilst I was impressed with the candle, the cologne was a slight disappointment for me. I found that it didn't last too long on the skin and before you knew it the scent was practically undetectable which is a real shame considering it is a luxury therefore on the pricey side. But enough about that, let me share with you the Lime Basil & Mandarin Room Spray, something I would never have thought to purchase for myself!

About the Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin Scent Surround Room Spray:
"Our signature fragrance. Peppery basil and aromatic white thyme bring an unexpected twist to the scent of limes on a Caribbean breeze. A modern classic. A burst of enticing scent. Instantly create an impression with a Scent Surround™ Room Spray.

The Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin Scent Surround Room Spray smells utterly perfect. Fresh and zesty, the Lime Basil & Mandarin fragrance is a scent made up of citrus, green and spicy notes. It isn't sickly sweet or overpowering, it has just the right amount of spice to it to take it from a completely citrus-y, lime based scent and to turn it into something a little more interesting. We all know how hard it is to put the smell of something into words but even if you don't think citrus fragrances will be for you, it is definitely one to take a look at next time you pass a Jo Malone counter.

The product itself comes housed in a 175ml spray bottle and as the scent is rather strong, you only need a short spray to fill the entire room with. I love to spray it in my bedroom before I get cosy to binge watch Love Island and it makes my room smell absolutely wonderful. I have also been known it spray it onto my body as a body spray and I can confirm that it lingers for just the same amount of time, if not longer, than the cologne so make of that what you will!

I believe that the Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin Room Spray will make for a perfect house warming present, or simply just for a gift to yourself to brighten up your day. It smells too good for words and yeah, let's not pretend it isn't expensive at £44 a bottle but as a special gift and a little treat of luxury, it is perfect.



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Review | Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin Scent Surround Room Spray

Following on from my previous review on The Ordinary High-Spreadability Fluid Primer, I loved it so much that I found myself going on a little spending spree on their website for more heavenly products. I originally only wanted to buy another High-Spreadability Fluid Primer for my sister as I wanted her to experience the good stuff too and before I knew it, I had 2 other skincare products and 4 foundations in my basket. Don't you just hate it when that happens?! 

When I first heard about The Ordinary I knew that they were soon to release a range of foundations which had over 25,000 people signed up to a waiting list for. Unsurprisingly they sold out pretty damn quickly and have been sold out ever since. That was until the day I decided to buy another primer and would you believe it? The foundations were back in stock and as I was unsure as to which colour I was, I bought 4. I managed to buy 2 of the Coverage Foundations and 2 of the Serum Foundations. At just over £5 each, it is no wonder they sold out so quickly.

I ended up buying quite a few skincare products and of course the 4 foundations but even with all of those, my order only came to just over £30 which is amazing considering everything I bought. If you hadn't heard about The Ordinary before then they are a skincare brand from umbrella company DECIEM which houses brands such as Hylamide and NIOD. The Ordinary promises to deliver effective clinical technologies within the skincare world, just like Hylamide and NIOD offer but at more of an affordable price. If you are interested in The Ordinary then I would really recommend reading their About section on their website as their mission statement is very inspiring and I really like what the brand is all about. They aren't just a brand which spurts out products for quick money, they have values behind them and I like that.

Let me share with you what I bought! I wouldn't usually treat myself to this amount but as everything was so reasonable price it was really hard not to get carried away.

This primer is the first product from The Ordinary that I have tried and it is the product which has enabled me to do this haul! The primer itself is designed to increase the spreadability of foundation, acting almost like a velvety soft film to the skin to ensure your foundation doesn't cling to any dry areas on the face. This primer is really thick and gloopy in consistency and actually it looks rather unpleasant and unappealing when you see it on the applicator but it practically melts into the skin and it makes applying foundation effortless. This is the only product out of the bunch that I have actually tried but goodness me, is it good.

Another primer, this time rather than being designed to help the application of your foundation, this primer is designed to act as matte, hydrating blurring primer which also claims to make your foundation stay on for longer. This primer can also be used as a moisturiser which reduces the look of pores and imperfections. The primer has the consistency of a creamy moisturiser in comparison to the High-Spreadability Fluid Primer which is more like a serum.

The Argireline Solution is a really lightweight serum which is designed to improve the appearance of lines and wrinkles on the face. You are supposed to apply it directly to the forehead and around the eye area in hope that it will improve the appearance of wrinkles but as I am only 23 and don't currently have any, I will be bathing in this morning, noon and night in hope that it will prevent the inevitable. After all, prevention is better than cure!

Onto the good stuff, the foundation! The Serum Foundation is a very lightweight foundation with a light coverage. I have been after some sort of BB, CC Cream for the warmer weather when I still want to wear a little bit of something something on my face to hide dark circles and blemishes without the heaviness of my usual foundations so this range of lightweight, light coverage foundation sounds perfect. I went for the shades 1.0N and 1.1N which are their very fair, neutral shades. I couldn't decide between two shades of pale so I decided to buy both and they seem fine but I will find out when I give them a try!

The product I was most looking forward to! All of my current foundations are running out and they are all high end so having the possibility of trying out a high coverage foundation in paler shades for £5.90 sounds too good to be true. The Coverage Foundation offers higher pigment levels than the Serum Foundation but still offer a smooth finish that avoids the heavy make-up look that can make skin appear aged. The consistency is that of a lightweight, non-oily cream and the foundation offers a semi-matte finish. I decided to buy this foundation in the shades 1.0N which is the very fair neutral shade and 1.0NS which is the very fair neutral shade with silver highlights to give the effect of a glow from within. I am so excited to try these foundations and I can't wait to share my opinions with you!

So, that was my little but quite substantial The Ordinary haul! I am really looking forward to trying everything out, especially the foundations. I struggle to find foundations in shades as pale as I am and from first appearances they all seem to suit me quite well but we will have to see what they will be like when I apply them to my skin. Have you tried anything from The Ordinary?

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Other | The Ordinary Skincare and Foundation Haul

I think it is no secret that I love make-up. I have too much of it, I don't particularly need it but I just can't stop buying it. Some of it is justitified, like this purchase for instance as I only have 2 blushers but the majority of the time I buy for the sake of buying. And it is hard not to when so much beautiful make-up is released so often. One brand in particular I believe release perhaps a little too much. 

I remember buying my first item from MAC about 6 years ago and I thought I was so grown up. Buying my first item of 'proper' make-up! Wow! Since then I have continued to admire MAC make-up and although I still love it and I will repurchase my beloved Paint Pot in Painterly until the end of time but I feel like MAC has been pushed to the back since all of these amazing other brands have since come about. Tarte, Morphe, Anastasia Beverly Hills, Colourpop... That said, MAC continue to bring out collection after collection of limited edition items endorsed by some celebrity or tv show or film etc etc. And, in my eyes, that is where they have gone wrong. They bring out so many collections so often that it is hard to keep up. How can you possibly buy everything you want if everything is limited and for such a short period of time? Of course a lot of people will buy it quickly as they genuinely want it but I do find MAC and their quick regurgitation of limited edition products hard to keep up with, so I tend not to bother. Because of the above, I am not interested in the limited edition collections and to be honest, I never have been. I once considered purchasing the Viva Glam hot pink mess all those years ago but chose against it which was rightly so as I knew I would never have used it. 

I recently went into a Cosmetics Company Store which is like an outlet store for last seasons make-up. They sell makeup from brands such as Bobbi Brown, Smashbox, Estee Lauder, MAC.. Which is where I spotted this hot pink blush. Completely out of my comfort zone, I only swatched it to see how bright it would look on my skin and I was so surprised at how flattering it was on my pale skintone. Housed in beautiful packaging, let me share with you the MAC x Mariah Carey Powder Blush in You've Got Me Feeling.

About the MAC x Mariah Carey Collection:
"We’ve long been dazzled by the chanteuse of the century. Now, Mariah Carey brings her impeccable glamour to a makeup collection that’s all you’ll ever want and a lot more, with sexy nude tones sparkling like champagne and glimmering like diamonds! The online-exclusive Lipglass in Butterfly Bling adds just the right amount of flash. Luxurious packaging in silver glitter with champagne gold accents and Mariah’s signature."

The MAC x Mariah Carey collection was impressive, as MAC collections go. Not only was the packaging absolutely beautiful with champagne gold detailing and embossed silver glittery accents, but the make-up itself was truly stunning. 2 eyeshadow palettes, 5 lipsticks, 5 lipglosses, 2 powder blushers.. And that's just the start. I wasn't tempted by this collection when it came out as I can't say the name Mariah Carey would particularly encourage me to buy but the products do speak for themselves.

The MAC x Mariah Carey Powder Blush in You've Got Me Feeling looks fairly intimidating in the pan but once on the skin it looks beautiful. You've Got Me Feeling is described to be a light candy pink and for someone who isn't too keen on bright colours, it is definitely outside of my comfort zone but it makes a nice change from the two other blushers that I own - a coral orange and a muted pink. Pigmentation wise this blusher is just as great as the others from MAC. Rich in pigmentation, a little goes a long way making them so long lasting, they can last for years! 

I'm so pleased I decided to buy You've Got Me Feeling. There is no denying that it is out of my comfort zone shade wise but as soon as it is on the skin it is incredibly flattering, as long as you use a light hand! It can be easy to get carried away when applying blusher but when dusted lightly on the apples of the cheeks it looks lovely. I think I paid about £12 for this blusher which is a great investment really as they last for such a long time. I still might not be a MAC collections fan but I do really like this shade and it has taught me not to instantly dismiss MAC's limited edition collections, even if it does seem as if they are brought out every other week!

MAC x Mariah Carey Powder Blush - £12.00

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Review | MAC x Mariah Carey Powder Blush in You've Got Me Feeling

I'm going to share a personal opinion with you - I'm not crazy about summer. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love the warmer weather and the longer days but as a hayfever sufferer, summer for me is just 3 months of absolute misery. My eyes sting and water as soon as I open a window, my chest hurts so I can't breathe properly, I can't stop sniffing, people constantly ask why I am crying and to top it off, I am yet to meet any medication to help me in any possible way. In fact, I wear more eye make-up in the summer to stop myself from itching my eyes as as soon as I will start, I will not be able to stop! 

Aside from spending the entire summer with a permanent cold, I also struggle to find summer clothes that I like. I can dress for Autumn and Winter no problem but I really struggle with my summer style, especially given the infamous Great British Summer. What do you wear when it is pouring with rain outside but still 22 degrees?? One piece of clothing I have worn a lot so far this summer is my trench coat. Perfect for the warmer seasons, a trench coat is effortlessly stylish. I used to wonder how to style a trench coat but actually, they style themselves. You create your outfit around the trench coat as they go with everything whilst remaining an outerwear essential. Quintessentially British, the trench coat is a summer essential, especially with the festival season coming up. You won't catch me in a cagoule or plastic poncho in the pouring rain this summer, but you will catch me in a trench!

Alongside the classic women's trench coat, this summer you will also find me wearing a hell of a lot of bardot tops, bardot dresses, clean, crisp white cotton shirts and floral midi dresses. I dress lazily in the summer. I like to pull something on quickly and not have to spend ages in the mirror trying to work out if my outfit goes or not. This is my summer style!
Jack Wills Dollyhill Trench / Jack Wills Duncombe Trench / Jack Wills Dollyhill Trench
Jack Wills Woolscott Broderie Shirt Dress / Jack Wills Downswood Floral Short / Jack Wills Mazza Floral Dress
Zara Shimmery Jacket / Zara Textured Tweed Jacket / Zara Suede Jacket
Zara Floral Dress / Zara Faux Leather Dress / Zara Suede Effect Dress
Zara Off The Shoulder Dress / Zara Frilly Dress / Zara Frilled Sleeve Dress

You really cannot beat the classic stone trench coat, can you? That's my summer style, what is yours? I have lost count of how many summer sales I have participated in so far this year and we haven't even reached July yet!

(Post in collaboration with Jack Wills)

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Other | My Summer Style

I'm not one to usually go for hyped up products (ahem) but when I heard that people were joining the waiting list for the majority of this brands products, I had a feeling that it must be good. The Ordinary are a skincare brand from umbrella company DECIEM which houses brands such as Hylamide and NIOD. The Ordinary promises to deliver effective clinical technologies within the skincare world, just like Hylamide and NIOD offer but at more of an affordable price. If you are interested in The Ordinary then I would really recommend reading their About section on their website as their mission statement is very inspiring and I really like what the brand is all about. They aren't just a brand which spurts out products for quick money, they have values behind them and I like that.

When I first heard about The Ordinary, I was amazed about how many people had joined the waiting list for their products and I will admit that I am now on that waiting list for their highly anticipated foundations as they just sound incredible. At less than £6 each, both of their foundations, their Serum Foundation which is lightweight and the Coverage Foundation, which offers a higher level of pigmentation, promises to offer a smooth finish which avoids the appearance of a heavier makeup look which can make the skin appear more aged. The textures of the foundations are that of a lightweight cream and I honestly have never been more excited to try a product before. I have not yet met my 'holy-grail' foundation and I already have good feelings about this one and I've not tried it yet!

Let me share with you a product that I have tried. I was recently making an ASOS order and saw that they stocked The Ordinary skincare products and decided to buy a couple of their primers to see what they would be like. Very reasonably priced, let me share with you The Ordinary High-Spreadability Fluid Primer.

About The Ordinary High-Spreadability Fluid Primer:
"This new generation of primer is a lightweight serum-like formula that increases the spreadability of subsequent complexion makeup to help avoid the unnatural and uneven accumulation of pigments especially around the eyes and on dry skin. The formula also acts as a light, non-oily surface hydrator for a natural dewy look."

The Ordinary High-Spreadability Fluid Primer is designed to increase the spreadability of your foundation to help avoid the unnatural and uneven build up when you have dry skin. It is supposed to stop the cakey build up which might get accumulated on certain areas on the face. For me I suffer with really dry skin on my cheeks and on my forehead and I do find that my foundation does seem to cling to it so the idea of having a serum to apply onto my bare face to act as almost a smooth barrier does sound like the perfect solution.

The Ordinary High-Spreadability Fluid Primer arrives in a little 30 ml bottle with a dropper applicator which I like the look of but practicality wise you can't beat a plastic squeezy bottle, can you?! The formula of the primer is most unusual. It is clear in appearance but in formula it is fairly thick and dare I say it, gloopy? It isn't runny, instead it is almost like a thick gel so because of this I find the dropper to be rather indifferent. It is good at sucking the product up and squeezing it out but when you pull the dropper out of the bottle it is covered in the thick, gloopy primer so it can make a bit of a mess when you try not to waste the precious, precious product.

To apply, I squeeze a small amount onto the back of my hand then blend it into the skin with my fingertips and goodness me, it is like applying velvet to the face. You can definitely feel the silicone within the product as it gives the skin a silky smooth, velvety appearance and feel and it makes for a wonderful base for foundation as your skin is just so incredibly smooth. It immediately sinks into the skin, evens out the skins appearance and really preps and primes the skin for the application of make-up. I can't say that it makes my make-up stay on for longer and actually, I wouldn't expect it to as The Ordinary don't claim it to do so. It simply smooths and evens the skintone out to help make your foundation glide on flawlessly and it does exactly that. 

You know when you have a great product in your hands when you immediately tell someone about it and as soon as I had applied this primer to my skin, I immediately texted my sister a photo of it saying 'omggg this is amazing!!!' and it is. I love it and I can see exactly why The Ordinary have a waiting list for their products!


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Review | The Ordinary High-Spreadability Fluid Primer

When Instagram first got downloaded onto my phone, I wasn't all that fussed. I would post the odd photo with the Valencia filter and that was that but now Instagram means business. People are making careers off of posting photos on Instagram and I think that is to be admired. A lot of a persons life is documented on Instagram and it would be great to be able to print off those memories and put them into a photo album or hang them in a photo frame. I was recently contacted by Inkifi asking if I would be interesting in trying out their prints and printing my own Instagram photos through them and I couldn't wait to see what they would look like. I had a whole bunch of photos I thought would look good on my bedroom wall so I jumped at the chance and swiftly spent 2 and a half hours deciding which photos I would like printing!

With Inkifi you can get your Instagram photos printed on a whole variety of products ranging from posters, photo albums and the traditional prints. I decided to get my Instagram photos printed onto their Inkifi Square Prints* and I was really surprised at how big they were when they arrived. I was expecting something an awful lot smaller so I was pleasantly surprised. The whole process was unbelievably easy. All you have to do is connect Inkifi to your Instagram and choose which photos you would like printing and how many then checkout. The hardest bit was deciding which photos I wanted printing!

My prints arrived within a couple of days and I was so thrilled to see them in the flesh. They are printed on really excellent quality paper which is so thick it almost feels like card and the printers managed to pick up the bright pigments within each photo perfectly. I did notice that a few of the photos I had edited before uploading to Instagram had come out slightly grainier in comparison to unedited photos but it isn't too noticeable and it doesn't detract from a beautiful photo. I had all of my recent holiday photos printed and they look so perfect, I can't wait to find the perfect photo frame to hang them on my bedroom wall in.

I would really recommend Inkifi as I love not only the concept but the large variety of products you can get your Insta snaps printed onto. I really like the size of the Square Prints which I ordered and now I just need to find a frame to fit them in! For such a long time I have struggled to find some nice prints to go up on my bedroom wall but I needn't bother, I can have my own photographs instead. 

(My prints were sent to me in exchange for an honest review)

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Other | Printing Instagram Photos With Inkifi

The one part of make-up which I hate doing the most is my eyebrows. I wish I could have pretty Instagram eyebrows but I just don't. Before recently I had never even touched my eyebrows. I had never plucked them, waxed them, tinted them... I was lucky I didn't have a monobrow to be honest. A little while ago I plucked up the courage to get HD Brows done and whilst I liked them to begin with, they weren't what I wanted and I personally don't think it lasted very long. I would really like to get my eyebrows reshaped again and perhaps dyed as I have since changed my hair colour but for now I am trying to find products to help me work with the eyebrows that I have, not the ones I am dreaming about! 

A while ago I tried Benefit Gimme Brow which is a product designed to brush through the brows almost like a mascara, in order to create natural-looking fullness and definition to them. I really loved it and the results it created to the eyebrows but unfortunately it is slightly pricey at £20 a go and as I have recently ran out of Gimme Brow, I really wanted to see if I could find a cheaper alternative. Which was actually pretty easy to find! I ended up purchasing a few brow products from NYX in hope to tame my eyebrows and one of the products I bought is a wonderful, cheaper alternative to Gimme Brow. The NYX Tinted Brow Mascara has the same great qualities of Gimme Brow at a fraction of the price!

About the NYX Tinted Brow Mascara:
"No shame in wishing for a strong beautiful brow! Our foolproof tinted brow mascara helps your dream come true. It sets tames and tints brows for natural-looking wear. Our dependable formula leaves brows feeling soft while maintaining complete control."

The NYX Tinted Brow Mascara is available in 5 different shades varying from blonde to black. Very similar to the Benefit Gimme Brow, it works in exactly the same way of combing through the brows to create a natural fullness to them. It really is just like a mascara but for eyebrows!

It's hard to rave a product which is essentially just a coloured mascara but it is good. It is really good. This product does exactly what it claims to do. It is easy to comb through the eyebrows to create a really natural fullness to them and it pretty much does everything the Benefit Gimme Brow does but at a third of a cost! I do actually prefer the brush to the Benefit Gimmer brow as it has soft bristles in comparison to the NYX Tinted Brow Mascara which, as it is a lot smaller in size, has slightly stubbier bristles so I find that the Gimme Brow brushes through slightly easier and dispensers the product a little more naturally than the NYX version but for the price you can't really complain!


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Review | NYX Tinted Brow Mascara in Blonde

I'm quite tight when it comes to spending money so I don't tend to buy things on a whim. I want to make sure what I buy and spend my hard earned cash on will be worth it so I always read reviews beforehand, even if it's something for just a fiver. But when I heard someone talk about this product I didn't bother looking up reviews to see if it was good or not, I just bought it - which is very unlike me!

The L'oreal Paris Hydra Genius Aloe Water sounded like heaven to me. It is designed to refresh and remoisturise the skin whilst being as lightweight as water in texture. You are supposed to use it instead of your daily moisturiser and as soon as I heard about it I was sold. It might not sound too incredible but trust me, it is!

About the L'oreal Paris Hydra Genius Aloe Water:
"The Liquid Care; Fresh as water hydrating as a cream. Locks in Moisture for 72hrs. Enriched with Aloe Water & Hyaluronic Acid. Instantly Refreshes. For Normal to Dry Skin. Inspired by Asian skincare, L'OrĂ©al Paris Laboratories introduces the liquid care. It delivers pure moisture that penetrates quickly, deeply and continuously - without overloading the skin."

Available in three different versions depending on your skintype, the L'oreal Paris Hydra Genius Aloe Water is everything you will need as a base in just one bottle. It preps the skin before the application of make-up, it hydrates and moisturises and it leaves a lightweight, refreshing feeling on the skin. It is so hydrating that L'oreal recommend you don't use a moisturiser with it which is pretty bold, but you really don't need to use both products at the same time. For its hydration alone I would already recommend it.

I apply this product after I have cleansed my face in the morning, just before I apply my make-up. I apply one pump to a clean face and rub it in before immediately applying my make-up. It absorbs into the skin within moments and leaves it feeling incredibly soft and hydrated, giving the skin a really plump base to apply make-up to. I find that my foundation applies smoother and looks better if I apply it on top of the Hydra Genius Aloe Water as it makes the skin feel so hydrated and so smooth, foundation just blends into it perfectly. 

I really love this product and I can definitely see myself re-purchasing after I have finished this bottle. You only need one pump for the entire face and the product absorbs into the skin immediately. It is so hydrating, it keeps the skin hydrated and moisturised all day long and as it is so lightweight, it doesn't affect make-up application at all. It actually makes the application of foundation even easier as it leaves your skin feeling so plump and smooth. I definitely recommend it and I think my regular moisturising days may be over!


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Review | L'oreal Paris Hydra Genius Aloe Water

I love doing my make-up. I take a lot of time doing it and I forgo an extra hour in bed just so I have time to put my make-up on before I go to work in the morning and most of the time, I am happy with it. That is until I scroll through Instagram and see all of these amazing, pretty Instagram girls with their chiselled cheeks, false eyelashes and blinding highlighter and I suddenly feel disheartened. Of course I know that a few filters have been used and everyone takes selfies with a ring light now but it can be so disheartening thinking you look nice and have made an effort then you look at Instagram and realise you are a bit of a chubby mouldy potato.

Slight body issues aside, I choose these few mind-numbing moments of liking pretty photos on Instagram to work out what I can do to change my make-up rather than to use it in an angry, self-hate sort of way. What is it that I like about their appearance that I can try and incorporate into my own? The first point of envy that I wanted to try and recreate on my face was the blindingly bright, glowy highlighter that is so bright it is almost as if it is beaming up to space. I know highlighter is usually supposed to be soft and subtle rather than bright and obvious - some days I want it to be subtle but right now all I want is it to be seen from miles away! 

Obviously I want Becca's Champagne Pop as much as the next person and I have added it to my online basket so many times and at the last minute I have changed my mind as £32 for a highlighter does seem a bit of an extravagance so before I splashed the cash, I really want to see what the highlighters were like on the high street. I searched Boots and Superdrug but couldn't find any highlighting powder which was buttery soft as well as hella shimmery. Everything seemed to be rather gritty and dull in terms of shimmer. In fact, the only place I managed to find what I was looking for was in Topshop, of all places. 

I have heard lots about Topshop's own brand of make-up and I know a while ago it was really popular but since then I haven't really heard much about it. What caught my eye was a gorgeous selection of highlighters and I was completely sold after just one swatch. With three shades on offer, I was completely torn between all three - they were all so soft, pigmented and shimmery, just what I have been after! I eventually went for the Topshop Highlight in Crescent Moon and you know what? I love it.

About the Topshop Highlighter in Crescent Moon:
"Shimmering silky pearl highlighter to add radiance to the face and body. Swirl with kabuki or powder brush and apply directly to face and body."

With the Topshop Highlighters available in three shades, you would almost believe that there wasn't enough choice but boy, it is hard to choose between just three, let me tell you. The shades to choose from are Sunbeam, a bright gold, Horizon, a bronzey rose gold and finally Crescent Moon, a beautiful champagne with an iridescent, almost metallic pink finish to it. Crescent Moon is not a shade I have ever seen before which was why I was so drawn to it. It looks pretty basic in the pan but as soon as you swipe your finger across the domed highlighter, you are really in for a treat. It looked so beautiful on the back of my hand that I just could not wait to apply it to my face!

Housed in a pretty generous compact, you get 6.5 g of product for your money. I love the domed effect to the highlighter itself, as well as the pretty star outer packaging. It feels pretty sturdy but I can't say that it would survive a fall and because of that I probably wouldn't want to travel with it. The texture of the highlighter is very soft and finely milled without being gritty which makes application incredibly easy. It applies and blends like a dream and whilst it could be easy to go a little overboard with the highlighter as it is very pigmented, I don't think there is such a thing as too much! It is easy to apply a light layer for a subtle glow if applied with a light hand but I like to pack it all on with a small face brush then blend it out afterwards. 

I'm obsessed with this highlighter and I am so pleased that I discovered it. I was not expecting to find a highlighter I would love from Topshop but I am completely converted. Crescent Moon is like no other. In the pan it looks like a basic and pretty champagne shade but when blended out it has a gorgeous metallic, almost pink iridescence to it which looks so lovely on the cheekbones. I still really want Becca's Champagne Pop but for now, Crescent Moon will do for me!


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Review | Topshop Highlighter in Crescent Moon

I've recently been on the hunt for an ultra-lightweight moisturiser for the summer time. Something really fresh and cooling on the skin. Something perfect for underneath foundation and make-up and preferably, something which helps to mattify the skin too. I've recently noticed that my usual everyday go-to moisturiser gets a little greasy throughout the day, even under matte foundation. I do have slightly oily skin but goodness me, it seems to be getting worse as the weather gets warmer. So to have a product with mattifying properties to it seems like the perfect aide to me at the moment.

I was recently in Boots and I saw the Garnier Skinactive Naturals range which is a range of skincare products available in 4 different variations with each type easing a different skin complaint. The products available in the range are; a milk cleanser, a gel facial wash, a toner and a moisturiser, all of which are available in the 4 different varieties, Rose, Aloe, Honey and Green Tea. The Rose products help to soothe, Aloe helps to refresh, Honey helps to nourish and Green Tea helps to purify and mattify. Obviously with the above taken into consideration I bought the Garnier Skinactive Naturals Green Tea Moisturiser with its claims to hydrate and mattify although I could have easily bought every variation as they all sound as if they would work wonders on the skin.

About the Garnier Skinactive Naturals Green Tea Moisturiser:
"Is Green Tea Leaves Purifying Botanical Day Cream right for me? Yes if you're looking for a daily skin care product to leave your skin hydrated and looking matte, as if rebalanced. What is different? This botanical cream is a part of Garnier's new generation of hydrating formulas made with 96% ingredients from natural origin. Specially formulated to mattify skin: Enriched with Green Tea Leaves, known for its purifying power, it's formula leaves skin looking mattified as if rebalanced. Enriched with a natural antioxidant to help protect skin day after day against the harmful effects of the environment."

The Garnier Skinactive Naturals Green Tea Moisturiser is designed to hydrate and mattify the skin with the help of the natural ingredients within. The formula is made up of 96% natural ingredients which are kind and gentle on the skin whilst delivering hydration. I chose the Green Tea variation of the botanical day cream rather than the Rose, Honey or Aloe versions as I need the mattifying results that the Green Tea moisturiser offers. But does it?

The Green Tea Moisturiser itself is very lightweight in formula and in consistency. It is incredibly refreshing in scent and on the skin, although I would have expected it to have a slightly more noticeable green tea scent to it. That said, this moisturiser does exactly what it claims to do. It is the perfect lightweight day cream which really does help to mattify the skin and keep oil at bay throughout the day. It is light enough that it doesn't affect your foundation or other make-up and it does a great job of keeping your skin hydrated during the day. I can't see myself using it during Autumn/Winter as I prefer slightly thicker creams for those periods but for sunnier, warmer times then I can definitely see myself using this for the foreseeable future! If you are after a budget. lightweight day moisturiser then I definitely recommend not only this moisturiser but the whole range and I definitely want to try a few more products from the Garnier Skinactive Naturals range.


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Review | Garnier Skinactive Naturals Green Tea Moisturiser

Graduation season is upon us and whilst I have never been to university, the idea of receiving a graduation present as a "well done" for 3/4 years of hard work is somewhat appealing. My sister is graduating in the Summer but what on earth do you give as a graduation present? I have asked so many people what sort of gifts they have given their graduating loved ones and I was somewhat taken aback. Designer handbags, Tiffany jewellery, Christian Louboutin shoes, a car... So that £10 book voucher I was planning on giving my sister perhaps won't cut it after all!

If my sister is expecting a car then I'm afraid her hopes will be dashed, as are the £560 Jimmy Choos she keeps sending me photos of but what are some reasonable graduation gifts? I firmly believe that ladies perfume and a nice piece of jewellery is a great place to start. Why? Because those are the gifts we never buy ourselves. 

I thought I would put together two different graduation gift ideas, one high end and one somewhat more reasonable. I think one of the reason why high end graduation gifts are so popular is because it is a gift that the whole family puts towards. It's not just one singular present from one person, it is a special gift - something to keep and to cherish. Although I do still think a car is pretty 'out there'!

Before my sister informed me she wanted a pair of Jimmy Choos as a graduation gift, she declared she wanted a Mont Blanc Fountain pen. Fair enough me and my family thought, sure, we can get you a nice pen to take to your first post-grad job with...That was until we saw the cost of them. I firmly believe you get what you pay for but wow, £500 for a pen seems rather extravagant so we quickly diminished that idea! This Tiffany & Co Pen is still pricier than a biro but it is still something to cherish and to keep hold of without being gut-wrenchingly expensive. I absolutely love all of the jewellery above, especially the large white pearl earrings and the Monica Vinader bracelet which you can get engraved with a small message of your choice. I love the idea of personalised gifts and I think a personalised piece of jewellery is faultless.

I know the above items seem rather extravagant and pricey but a graduation present seems to be a gift from a whole family to a person rather than gifts from individuals which is why I have included some rather lovely but expensive gifts. I absolutely love the Dior Tribales Earrings and if I were to graduate then I would be absolutely delighted to receive these on my special day. You only graduate once so it is nice to gift something that someone can keep and cherish.

Are you graduating this year? What would you like to receive as a graduation gift? 

(*Sponsored post)

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Other | Graduation Gift Ideas For Her

Do you ever completely change your mind on a product? When I first tried the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks, I was really disappointed in them. At the time I was well and truly on the Kylie Lip Kit bandwagon so I found it hard not to compare the two but at the time, I much preferred Kylie's offering as I believed the shades I bought were more suited to my skintone rather than the shades I bought from Kat Von D which I didn't think suited me as much. Because of that the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks haven't really seen light of day since then.

When I originally tried out the Kat Von D Liquid Lipsticks, I believed them to be quite thin in consistency which made the colour apply fairly sheer so I would need to build up the colour on the lips slightly. I believed they didn't last long at all on the lips - instead, they would transfer onto everything and fade away after an hour or two and I firmly believed that the colours didn't suit me so I never used them. Well, how wrong I was! I recently decided to give the shade Lolita II another go and I was so impressed. It managed to stay on my lips all day long without needing to reapply and that was with eating, drinking and working in 25 degree heat. All of my make-up practically melted away, all except for my lipstick. I didn't find it to be drying on the lips or uncomfortable to wear all day so I have definitely changed my opinion on them, which is just great. I love rediscovering products I forgot I had or even just giving products I originally didn't like another chance as the majority of the time, my opinion changes.

Because my opinion on them has changed so vastly, I thought I would revisit each shade as well as share why I now love each of them so much.

Bachelorette - The latest shade to enter my collection, Bachelorette is an absolutely gorgeous bright strawberry red, although Kat Von D likes to call it a dark reddish fuchsia. The brightest shade and most vibrant out of the three featured, this is shade which is slightly outside of my comfort zone but I love it so. If you love a bright, strawberry red matte lip then this is definitely one for you. It is really flattering on all skintones and looks lovely with very minimal, neutral make-up to make the lipstick stand out even further.

Lolita - Lolita was perhaps Kat Von D's original most popular shade, which is exactly why I bought it. I wanted it so badly that I went to nearly every Sephora in and surrounding Washington DC to find this lipstick as it was just sold out everywhere. When I finally found it, bought it and tried it, I absolutely hated it. I really believed that this shade didn't suit me at all but I can gladly say that I was wrong. Described as a chestnut rose, Lolita is a dark, muted brown nude which originally didn't impress me but now I can't get enough of it. Nude shades don't tend to suit me as I am very pale so I need to choose something a bit darker so for me, Lolita is my perfect option. It is a shade which has not yet clashed with various different eyeshadow looks I have experimented with so for that reason alone it is always in my handbag, ready to be applied as I dash out of the door. It is a really staple lipstick shade to have and I am really pleased that I have discovered a love for it.

Lolita II - Lolita II is Lolita's little sister. Described as being a terracotta nude, it is really hard not to compare Lolita with Lolita II. Lolita II is a much warmer, coral based matte which tends to look different on each skintone. On some it appears to be a warm nude but on my pale skin it appears to be more orange-toned. I wear Lolita II when I have more neutral toned eyeshadows on my eyelids as I find that it can clash with the rest of my make-up slightly if I apply eyeshadows which have a bit more colour to them. This is only because it really does apply much more orange-toned than it appears to be on first glance but it is still a really pretty, wearable matte lipstick which I can see myself wearing a lot more now that Summer is approaching.

I am so glad that I rediscovered these lipsticks and gave them another chance. They are lightweight on the lips and even though they have a matte formula to them they aren't too drying or uncomfortable and the shade range is incredibly impressive. Whilst I will probably give the neon turquoise and the bright grape shades a miss, each of the other 40 shades are unique, pretty and wearable and if you manage to come across them then they are definitely worth a chance - or in my case, two!



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Review | Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipsticks in Bachelorette, Lolita & Lolita II

I can proudly say that after about 19 years of living in the box room in my Mum's house I have finally moved! - To my sisters bedroom. I have been upgraded and I finally have a room big enough to turn around in which is just mind-boggling after years of having a room just with a bed in. Whilst I don't have the bedroom measurements on me, it was roughly similar to that of Harry Potter and his little cupboard under the stairs but beggars can't be choosers, can they?!

With a new bedroom comes a little bit of interior design and I literally could not wait to re-arrange the bedroom to how I wanted it, to paint it the colour I wanted it and to make the bedroom feel more like my own rather than to remember it as my sisters old room. I immediately knew I wanted the walls to be white rather than the deep yellow it originally was so that was an easy choice but finding a colour scheme and decorations to match was slightly more difficult. I decided to go shopping and see if I could see any decorative items that I liked which I could then set the colour scheme around rather than choosing a colour scheme and struggling to find items to match.

I went to Next and immediately found a bunch of pale pink faux peonies in a vase which quickly made my mind up in terms of colour scheme. I'm not a pink kinda girl so choosing a pink colour scheme wasn't what I was expecting to go for but what can I say, I am a sucker for pink peonies! Since then I have found two more bunches of pink faux flowers to use decoratively in my room, as well as a really cute quote within a frame which I bought from the Card Factory for about £3. It says "the secret of being happy is simply being nice" and I try to remember that every day. 

Once I had chosen the colour scheme I decided I wanted two big pink and fluffy cushions for the bed and I just could not find any anywhere. I looked everywhere and eventually saw two in TKMaxx which were about £30 each. I loved them. They were so soft and cosy but far too expensive so I decided against them. In the end I managed to find these two lovely cushions from Matalan for just £8 each! I really regretted not buying the ones from TKMaxx but the cushions from Matalan are just as soft and great quality for a fraction of the price. When I was waiting to pay I saw this mustard yellow cushion for £6 which I thought would look lovely in between them on the bed and I feel like they really finish the room off. I only ever have white bed sheets on my bed now to make the cushions stand out even further but I would love one of those really big, chunky knitted pink blankets to throw across the end of the bed.

Here is a little bit of bedroom inspo for you all!

What do you think? What is your bedroom like?

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Other | Bedroom Interior Inspiration

Mascara is the part of my make-up routine which I dislike applying the most. Some of the wands are so chunky that as soon as they come into close contact with my eye the mascara seems to just go everywhere. Sometimes I haven't even managed to get the wand to even touch my eyelashes and before I know it it is all over my eyelid and halfway down my face. I have lost count at how many times I have worked so hard on my eyeshadow, blended it out to perfection, admired it in the mirror before trying to carefully applying a coat or two of mascara and - woops! it is all over my eyelid and completely ruined my eyeshadow. Please tell me I am not the only one this happens to!

Not only do I dislike applying the product, I also dislike buying the product too. There are so many mascaras out there, all offering so many different results it is hard to choose which one to go for when you are staring at a sea of so many. I find that a lot of mascaras offer the world but don't really deliver too much in the way of results. I can name one mascara that I have really, really enjoyed using but that is one out of about 10 years worth of trying so many various mascaras from a whole variety of different brands. Mascara plays such a pivotal part in applying your make-up as it is literally the finishing touch. It brings your eye make-up together perfectly and I would never even consider applying my make-up without mascara so it is definitely a must have. My current favourite, the Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara is on its last legs so it is time to purchase a new one. I was considering trying out the new L'oreal mascara but when I was offered the chance to try out Maybelline's latest offering, I couldn't say no! The Maybelline Colossal Big Shot Mascara* aims to deliver a hell of a lot of volume, so let's find out!

About the Maybelline Colossal Big Shot Mascara:
"Meet the Big Shot. Big volume from root to tip. Our colossal brush delivers collagen enriched formula from the root to tip of lashes for fully loaded volume. Discover instant volume with our biggest Colossal yet!"

The Maybelline Colossal Big Shot Mascara is designed to offer big, voluminous lashes with just one coat which is just what we are all after, isn't it? I love the false lash effect and when I try out a new mascara that is exactly the results I am after. I want elongated, thick lashes full of volume, which is partly what this mascara offers. 

The mascara comes in a gold tube which is in the typical shape of Maybelline mascaras. As soon as I see this style of packaging I do immediately think of Maybelline, although it would be easy to get it mixed up with other mascaras that Maybelline have to offer. The wand is slightly unusual with short wavy bristles which aren't too thick and chunky. I actually find the mascara really easy to apply as the wand itself is quite thin so you can get a really precise application without worrying you will get it everywhere. With one coat of the Big Shot Mascara applied to the eyelashes they are instantly made to appear thicker and slightly longer but I wouldn't say it gave a really heightened amount of volume to them. I also found that it made the eyelashes appear not clumpy but not as separated as I would have liked. I feel like I have to apply another mascara on top just to separate the eyelashes a little. The results are nice and are perfectly fine for everyday but if I was going on a night out then perhaps I would want something a little bolder with more volume. 

I haven't tried any of the other Maybelline Colossal Mascaras but the Big Shot is the latest addition to the growing family. I would like to try some more mascaras from Maybelline but I don't think I would buy this mascara again. It is great for everyday and perfect for work but I do prefer more obvious and bolder lashes for a night out so for that occassion I would choose something else. If you are after a mascara which makes your eyelashes appear thicker then this is great but for volume and more separated, defined lashes I would choose a different product.

(*PR sample)

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Review | Maybelline Colossal Big Shot Mascara

With summer nearly here it's time to say goodbye to the winter beauty products and say hello to some brand new lighter alternatives. Soon I will be saying farewell to my plum, berries and dark red lipsticks and hello to some fresher, lighter shades to wear throughout the end of Spring and Summer. I will also be waving goodbye to my heavy moisturisers and skincare products and welcome in some lighter products with added SPF to take care of my skin from harmful rays. With my richer and deeper products being placed to the back of my beauty drawers ready to come out again in Autumn, it's time to make a wishlist of products I need to stock up on so I am Summer ready. Give me all of the glowy products, please!

Firstly, let's start with the base. There's no good applying some wonderful beauty products when your skin isn't looking it's best, is there? I love really lightweight, fresh products for my base to keep my face hydrated all day long so when it comes to moisturiser L'Occitane is high on my wishlist. Their L'Occitane Precious Light Face Cream with SPF20 sounds like the perfect option. It's a really lightweight formula which allows the skin to breathe and is quickly absorbed into the skin without being greasy or leaving the skin looking oily, something I really do not need any help in! I also think their L'Occitane Angelica UV Shield with SP40 sounds like a summer must-have. It's a lightweight and silky smooth formula which is designed to protect the skin from the sun whilst moisturising and with continued use it leaves the skin looking plumper and more radiant. I think this product will be an everyday essential during summer and because it is so lightweight it will be perfect underneath make-up.

Now, let's talk make-up! When it comes to Summer, the majority of us want really glowy skin but I find that when I look 'glowy' it can tend to look more oily than anything. I haven't yet found the perfect highlighting products to suit my skintone and skintype yet so hopefully this summer that can change. I absolutely love the sound of the Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Presecco Pop. Designed to be really lightweight on the skin, Prosecco Pop is a dewy, opalescent priming potion which subtly illuminates the skin without being glittery. I love the idea of using a liquid formula to illuminate the skin with before applying the rest of my make-up. I would then also love to try out the ultra-famous Becca x Jaclyn Hill Shimmering Skin Perfector in Champagne Pop. I can't believe that I don't yet own this as it has been incredibly high up on my beauty wishlist for a very long time. This famous highlighter looks so beautiful on all skintones and whilst it may be pricey, I believe this would last an incredibly long time as it appears to be so pigmented and smooth in formula without being gritty due to glitter. Never have I wanted something more and it will definitely be mine this summer! Also staying on the lines of highlighters, I would also love to try out the Jouer Cosmetics Powder Highlighter in Topaz. Another powder highlighter, Topaz is a really beautiful shimmering peachy gold shade which has a velvety soft texture to give the skin an ethereal glow. I have never actually tried any high end highlighters before but these two are very high up on my wishlist!

Eyeshadow-wise, I do not need anything other than the Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Palette. I already own this so it's not on my wishlist but it should definitely be on all of yours! I recently reviewed it so you can read all of my thoughts about it there but once you use this, you don't need anything else! Onto eyebrows, I would love to try out the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Ash Blonde. I have never tried any of the ABH highly popular brow products and as I have recently dyed my hair to an ashy blonde, I would love to try out their brow pencil in a shade to actually match my current hair colour. I would also love to try out their pomade but as I prefer a more natural, softer brow I think that the Brow Wiz would be more suitable for me.

Finally, the last thing on my summer wishlist is another gorgeous fragrance from Jo Malone. I recently bought my Mum a fragrance from them for Mother's Day and as much as she loved it, we both agreed that it didn't last very long on the skin at all. When you are spending so much money on a bottle of cologne you would like it to last longer than an hour or two on the skin. That said, I would like to try another fragrance from Jo Malone to see if another scent lasts longer, which is why the Jo Malone Peony & Blush Suede Cologne is on my wishlist. Floral scents are the epitome of Spring and Summer so this fragrance sounds perfect. Pricey, but perfect!

That is my summer wishlist, what is yours?

(*This post is in collaboration with L'Occitane)

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Other | My Summer Beauty Wishlist

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