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Thursday, 2 July 2015

New In Beauty | bagsy, Vichy, Liz Earle, Burt's Bees & more...

Just a little rundown of a few things that I've accumulated beauty wise over the last couple of months. Some are repurchases, i.e. my beloved Stay Time Concealer and some are totally new to me, i.e. I had no idea what they were when I opened them!

Burt's Bees Intense Hydration Cream Cleanser* | £9.99
This tube is enormous, there's a whole lot of cleanser in there! I definitely haven't given it a full trial yet, but I have used it a couple of times, in the same way I would the Liz Earle Hot Cloth Cleanser, and I do think it's nice. I haven't noticed any extra hydration from it, but it's certainly not drying and my skin is left feeling clean and very comfortable. 

Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish | £14
After finishing up my little tube and having loved using it as much as I did, I almost had no choice but to invest in another. Cleanse and Polish is a real cult favourite and although I wasn't a fan the first time I used it many years ago, I now completely see why so many love it. 
Burt's Bees Lip Balm | £3.50
My absolute favourite lip balm. I like it far more than Carmex, and a little more than the Blistex in the little blue tub. The Bee Good Lip Balm is a close second, but mine became impossible to squeeze out of the tube so I immediately went back to Burt and I haven't looked back! 

Vichy Beautifying Cleansing Micellar Oil* | £13.75
This appeared on my doorstep one day last week, and by that I mean the postman delivered it, it wasn't just there when I opened the door. That would be odd. What I mean is I didn't know it was coming, but I'm very interested to see how well it works. When it comes to removing my make up, oil cleansers are my number one choice. They tend to be superb at breaking down make up and leaving my face feeling clean before I go in with a cream cleanser and a flannel.

The first product that got me into cleansing oils was the ARK Pre Skin Cleanse, which is brilliant. I'm currently using the DHC Deep Cleansing Oil, which I like but it can make my eyes a little foggy so I don't think it's the perfect product. I'd still like to try The Body Shop Chamomile Cleansing Oil soon, but I will definitely be giving this Vichy one a try this week to see how it compares. 
Color Wow Pop & Lock Crystallite Shellac* | £14
Okay, so I had absolutely no idea what this was when I opened the parcel it came in. My first thought was oooh sparkly! And my second thought was overly glittery hair. I know the 90s are in, but I'm not sure I want to relive the days when I covered myself in glitter, specifically blue glitter. Those roll on glitter sticks anyone? I loved them.

A lightweight glosser, this is supposed to seal the cuticle, to trap colour and moisture, and lock out dryness. There's a UV filter to help stop colour fade and it's supposed to dry to a glossy, mirror-like shine. So I don't know about mirror-like, or about sealing the cuticle but this does give my hair a little extra shine that's always welcome. It's an interesting product, not one that I think 'oh I can't live without this', but I'm definitely enjoying using it so far.

Soap & Glory Peach Party | £11 
I snapped this up a little while ago in Annie's blog sale and I've been reaching for it on every good skin day since. It's very glowy and has the tendency to exaggerate any uneven skin so it's not one I like reach for every single day without question, but I've been wearing it a lot. And for someone that has mostly worn pink blushes for the last two years, this is a big change.
Balance Me BB Natural Perfection with SPF 25* | £26
When I was asking for BB Cream recommendations a few months ago, I was pointed towards this by so many different people. After a bit of google image browsing I assumed that it would be too dark for my complexion and I totally forgot about it. Then a couple of weeks ago this tube dropped through my letterbox, I gave it a try and was very pleasantly surprised that I can make it work for me. It is a little too dark so I've been mixing it with my NARS Tinted Moisturiser and the combination has been the perfect summer base.

It's really quite sheer, but it feels so light on my skin, looks incredibly natural and there's also a good SPF in there, so I definitely don't mind applying a little more concealer on those problem areas. If you think the colour might be a little dark for you, it could still be worth giving it a try! 
Seventeen Doll'd Up Mascara | £6.29
I've already talked about this at every opportunity since I got it, so I imagine that you're tired of seeing me mention it. But you know, here I am again. Essentially this is the best mascara under £10 that I've ever used. No flaking, no smudging, and it holds a curl all day. 

Seventeen Stay Time Concealer | £4.49
There's no knowing how many tubes of this I've been through. It's definitely more than three. It's the only concealer I use, both for under eyes and blemishes/redness, and I think it does a brilliant job at both. The lightest shade is a great match for me, the formula never looks cakey, it's easy to blend and it stays put throughout the day. 

So I'm just going to say it, I really don't like the name of this brand. I get the concept, it's all about compact handbag sized products that are easy to use and perfect for on-the-go touch ups, but I don't like it. It's one of those words I just don't like. Like quiche. But you know, that's just me.

The people behind bagsy have worked for global beauty brands, so I'm sure they know what they're doing, and are doing it better than I could. And the packaging is great. It's just the name. Like if I were wearing a NARS lipstick and someone asked me what it was, I'd just say NARS. But if someone asked me about these I'd say, oh they're a brand called bagsy but don't let the name put you off, their products are really nice.
bagsy Ray of Sunshine Perfect Glow Bronzing Powder*  | £18
I have this in the light/medium shade and it's a really lovely colour. Not too dark, not too orange, no shimmer or glitter, but gives a healthy glow without looking powdery on the skin. The quote isn't typically my thing, but it is a sweet touch and it does make me smile so I guess it's doing its job pretty well. This is something I already know that I'll reach for a lot over the summer.

It comes in a beautiful box with a pale blue pouch inside that. The compact itself is very simple, which is nice but I think I would have preferred the beautiful illustrations on the box to carry through into the compact. There's also a good sized mirror in there, so it's definitely been really well thought through.
bagsy Wow Lips Full Colour Chubby Stick* | £12
The outer cardboard tube this comes in is so pretty, so the white plastic casing, clean and simple though it is, feels a little underwhelming. It's a twist up stick, thank goodness for no annoying sharpeners, and it's very compact. There doesn't seem to be a lot of product in there so I'm not sure how long it would last, and the price seems a little on the high side.

Having said that the formula feels very comfortable on the lips, not drying and there's a good amount of pigmentation. I have the shade 03 Ready to Wear, which is a dark nude, one of those shades that's really popular at the moment and that I can see suiting a lot of skin tones. 
bagsy Lip Cocoon Raspberry Tinted Moisture Balm* | £7
Tinted balms are my thing. I'm all for hydrating, sheer lip colours and this is a perfect example of a really good one. It's incredibly smooth, the hint of colour is really lovely and the fruity raspberry scent isn't too over the top. I can't find this on the website, but I believe these retail for £7, which isn't extortionate and I would certainly purchase another one at that price.

I also have another product from the range which will be featured in a little summer giveaway in the next couple of days!

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Have you tried any of these products before? Anything that you'd particularly like to try?
I'd love to know what you think!


P.S. Pop over to ChrissyLilly for fun, Canadian adventures. And please give a huge hello also this month to Emilia Leigh, Blogging for Sanity, Loved by Laura and Laugh with me LeLe.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Dear July...

The warm weather your predecessor brought has ignited something inside me and I feel like I can take on the world. Looking back at Dear July last year I was reminded of the torrential rain falling this time twelve months ago, and I can wholeheartedly say that I prefer the warmth of you this time around. Summer is for endless sunshine, hazy evenings and the heady scent of barbecues floating through the air. Days like this are so rare, it's only right that I appreciate them completely whilst they're here.

Perhaps this year we'll make it to the seaside. Oh how I miss the salty air, the cool breeze dancing off the softly lapping waves. The seaside is its own special kind of magic, the memory of it alone makes my heart feel full and a smile appear on my face that I can't stop. 

Wimbledon is on in the background as I work; there's something very relaxing about the noise of a tennis ball meeting the racquet, there's a fresh bunch of flowers on the table and I'm reminding myself that from now on, the time is now because if not now, then when? 

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Do you have any plans for July?


P.S Please give a huge welcome to ChrissyLilly! She is embarking on a new adventure, moving from Ireland to Canada and would love to you join in too!

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

June 2015 Favourites | Beauty & Life!

June 2015 beauty and lifestyle favourites
End of June already? Where has the time gone? But the weather is warming up, I'm working with Wimbledon on the TV on in the background (strangely calming), and I'm going through ice lollies like they're going out of style. I've heard that bubblegum calippo's are a thing and I'm making it my July mission to track one of those down!

Anyway, here are the things I really liked during June...
Seventeel Doll'd Up Mascara
Seventeen Doll'd Up Mascara
I'm pretty sure this is my favourite mascara I've ever used. Although I usually gravitate towards those massive bristley brushes, this one is a small plastic wand with a slight curve and it works brilliantly. It's super easy to get into those little inner corner lashes, the formula dries quickly and it holds a curl all day. Love. It!
Essence Nail Polish
Essence Nail Polish in Electriiiiic
Blue nail polishes are my favourite and this one is a real beauty! The formula isn't fabulously long wearing, but it does apply evenly and dry quickly, so I can forgive it - especially because these are under £2 a bottle! 
Soap & Glory Whipped Clean
Soap & Glory Whipped Clean Shower Butter
This smells so good, all almondy and lovely, that I almost want to eat it. My skin is all over the place right now, in the warmer weather it gets super dry and I need something that feels a little more nourishing. Sometimes I have to go all out with the intense Oilatum, but right now this is working perfectly and that's okay with me because I'm all for delicious smelling products. 
Soap & Glory Peach Party Blush
Soap & Glory Peach Party 
My summer make up look this year is peachy-bronze, I've decided. For far too long I've been ignoring peach blushes, but it's time to bring them back into my daily make up, especially because they tend to look nicer on my skin tone than a lot of pink tones do. Peach Party has a tonne of shimmer packed in there so it's one I can only wear on a good skin/good concealer day, but it's so worth it. Hello healthy glow!
Skull Desk Tidy
Skull Desk Tidy* 
Mortimer got a lot of love in last Friday's post and he's been a total favourite of mine all month. He sits on my desk, usually wearing a pair of my specs, next to my Harry Potter crystal goblet and they compliment each other perfectly.
Silly bunny card
My mum gave me this and wrote it as if it came from Ralphie. To be honest I can totally see him chilling in an inflatable ring with sunnies on, he is the master of relaxation after all. It's not often you see things with black bunnies on so I'm going to have to keep this one out on display!
Busy B Month Planner
Busy B Planner* 
In an attempt to finally get my life in order, I've delved back into the world of planners and I'm loving it so far. With digital calendars it's too easy to move undone tasks to the following day with no guilt, but when things are written down unfinished tasks have to be crossed out and rewritten for the next day, and that's definitely guilt inducing! I've undoubtedly been more productive and I'm hoping this will continue next month too!
Orla Kiely Earl Grey Candle
Orla Kiely Earl Grey Candle* 
This is such a delicate scent, it's an absolute pleasure to burn. It does take a little while for the scent to fill the room, but once it does it's so lovely. It's warm, with a hit of citrus that cuts through keeping everything super fresh. The jar is stunning too, a classic Orla Kiely pattern looking resplendent in grey, it's one I'll definitely be holding on to.
Birdy by Jess Vallance published by Hot Key Books
Birdy by Jess Vallance* 
I don't read a lot of YA anymore and I really need to fix this because I live for uncovering incessantly smart books for young readers; gotta get them sucked in early! Birdy is delightfully creepy and I flew through it yesterday morning. Okay so I knew what the twists were before they happened, but it didn't dampen my enjoyment or totally ruin the experience at all. I'm definitely much, much older than its target reader and I've watched a lot of creepy TV in my time, so I wasn't expecting to be floored or anything. And I wasn't. But I still liked it. 

Other Things..

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Was there anything you especially loved during June?