Honest reviews, regular hauls and all things beauty.

Monday, 10 May 2021

Where is my place in the blogging world?

Photo source: Pinterest.

 

This post is inspired by Jasmine's recent post, and it really got me thinking. I started to blog because it was a distraction from my illness, I have always been hugely interested in beauty (my thesis even included it and the lack of racial diversity in the community), and also because being ill can be isolating, so it was nice to be part of a community. I genuinely wanted conversations with other people who had similar interests. I had no desire to be the next Zoella - I just wanted to have something else to focus on, other than my illness. I have made some great friends/connections with like-minded people and also seen others who started around the same time as me, just drop off the radar, as well as others sky-rocket, whether through buying followers on Instagram, or changing direction, which is only natural, as interests change as we get older (but please, enough of the gardening!!). I'm still blogging about beauty (although I do want to incorporate more of my other loves - handbags/shoes!) - both skincare and makeup, although more of the former. I've never actually shown my face on my blog or Instagram, which I feel has definitely affected my growth, but when I look in the mirror, I see the ill version of me. When I am better, you'll see me (if I'm still blogging!). Others may not even be able to tell that I'm ill - it's invisible after all, but I can, and that's what matters to me. So where does that leave me......

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Saturday, 8 May 2021

Brand Focus: Olaplex

 

Brand Focus: Olaplex
I bought all of these products.

Before I first tried Olaplex, around two and a half years ago, I really did wonder if it could possibly live up to the hype. At that stage, it was mainly a salon treatment (numbers 1 and 2), but then No. 3 was released, which is a pre-wash treatment. I was skeptical, but so many people were praising it, so I decided to give it a go, because my hair is naturally dry and prone to frizz, is coloured, I use heat on it and I have a long-term illness, which affects my hair (as does the medication I take) - so I thought I was pretty much the best guinea pig you could get for it! Obviously, I loved what it did for my hair or we wouldn't have a post dedicated to the entire brand! If you want to buy any of the products, my LYMIN code works on some of them to save you 20% on Look Fantastic. I'll indicate which ones in the post.

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Thursday, 6 May 2021

Dermalogica Melting Moisture Masque - my favourite skincare discovery of 2021 so far!

 

Dermalogica Melting Moisture Masque Review
This product was kindly gifted to me, without obligation, as part of Dermalogica's Skinfluencer campaign.

It takes a lot for me to say that a product that I have only been using for 3/4 weeks, is my favourite skincare discovery of the year so far, but this mask has blown me away! For reference, I have dry skin, which is also dehydrated at times, I'm also ill and I'm on a lot of medication, so I need to be very consistent in taking care of my skin. That said, there are still times when my skin goes through bad periods of dullness and  dry patches, regardless of how diligent I am. If you have skin like mine, you are going to LOVE Dermalogica Melting Moisture Masque*!

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Monday, 3 May 2021

Some recent Marc Jacobs purchases...

 

Marc Jacobs O!Mega X Three Powder Blush-Bronze-Highlight Palette Review, Marc Jacobs Brow Wow Duo Review, Marc Jacobs At Lash'd Lengthening and Curling Mascara Review
I bought all of these products myself.

Marc Jacobs Beauty is a brand that seems to fly under the radar for some reason, yet there are some really beautiful products in the collection. Sephora recently had a sale on most of the collection, so I placed an order (and then a second, which I'm hoping will arrive soon!) and I want to share my thoughts with you today. The more I try from this brand, the more I love it!

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Saturday, 1 May 2021

Spring Lips and Tips...

Spring Lip and Nail Colours 2021
Anything gifted to me, without obligation, will be marked with a *


I know that for a lot of people, when the easing of restrictions was announced, a nail appointment was the first thing they booked, but I've never had gel/acrylic/whatever other type there is, nails - I've always just painted them myself (apart from our wedding and just after we got engaged - but even then, it was just ordinary nail polish), so whilst I am reeeeeeally looking forward to getting my hair done, I'm happy with my home mani/pedis and today, I'm sharing my favourite polishes for Spring/Summer. I'm also sharing my go-to ip products, which are mainly balmy, as mask-wearing will be a thing (for me) for years to come, as I am extremely nervous when out in public. Those of you who are in countries that have opened up - were you anxious initially and do you still feel that way, or has the anxiety eased?

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Thursday, 29 April 2021

What I loved in April.....




When it came to thinking about what I loved in April, it was events, more than things, that sprang to mind. In Ireland, we're still in lockdown, but on April 12th, we were allowed to travel further than 5km from our house for the first time this year, so we waited for a sunny day and went to a quiet beach to get some sea air into our lungs. It was heavenly! I honestly don't care about shops or restaurants opening (although I really am looking forward to getting my hair done  - hopefully next month!), going to the beach was the one thing that I was most looking forward to doing, as soon as were allowed to do so. It also made me think about what's to come and I hope that if we don't come out of this lockdown too early, we will hopefully be able to avoid another one (although who knows what will happen when winter rolls around). So what else did I enjoy in April?

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Tuesday, 27 April 2021

Charlotte Tilbury Super Radiance Resurfacing Facial & Magic Serum Crystal Elixir Review

 

Charlotte Tilbury Super Radiance Resurfacing Facial Review,  Magic Serum Crystal Elixir Review


I know that I'm quite late to the party on these products and you will probably have read a lot of reviews when they were first released, but quite often, they are more a case of first impressions, rather than actual reviews. I was lucky enough to be sent these products around 5/6 weeks ago and want to share my thoughts on them with you today.

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Sunday, 25 April 2021

3 treats for 3 budgets

 

3 treats for 3 budgets
The Foreo was kindly gifted to me, without obligation.

I feel like this past month has flown by, even though we are still in lockdown in Ireland. The restrictions were lifted from only being able to travel 5km from your house, to 20km, or anywhere within your own county, and it has made a big difference because since Christmas, I have only left my house for medical appointments. Non-essential retail is still closed, as are hair salons, restaurants etc, but we've been able to go to the beach (still too cold not to wear jeans though!), but I think that is what has helped this month fly by. So now it's pay day again and if you fancy treating yourself, I have three gorgeous products for three budgets!

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Friday, 23 April 2021

Garnier Cruelty Free Haircare Review

 

Garnier Haircare Review
These products were kindly gifted to me, without obligation.


I'm aware that I post a lot of luxury brands and products on here, but I'm not averse to using budget brands when they perform well - who doesn't want to save some money where they can? I first used the Garnier 3 in 1 Hair Mask two years ago, when they were first released (review here) and I was recently given the opportunity to try another mask from the range and one of their new shampoo bars. I think that it's fantastic that these are now available in supermarkets and on the high street. My mother actually asked me a few months back where she would find a shampoo bar, as she is becoming more and more aware of sustainability as the years go on - it's almost like that old show The Good Life, because she grows her own fruit and veg and uses peelings, egg shells etc for her composters. I was delighted to be able to tell her that she can now get a shampoo bar with her weekly shop. All Garnier products are now officially cruelty free and they have been given the stamp of approval from the Cruelty Free International Leaping Bunny Programme, which is a huge achievement for any brand, but particularly for a budget-friendly brand. 

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Wednesday, 21 April 2021

Omorovicza Midnight Renewal Review

 

Omorovicza Midnight Renewal Review
This product was kindly gifted to me, without obligation.


It will come as no surprise to my regular readers that I get very excited when Omorovicza release a new product, because the brand is basically made for my skin! I just adore everything they produce and everything suits my sensitive skin so well. Although the products all contain their patented Healing Concentrate™ and are suited to sensitive skin, they work for all skin types, because they are effective and really deliver results. Today I want to talk to you about their latest release - Midnight Renewal*, which was kindly gifted to me.

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Monday, 19 April 2021

Rosacea month - the best products to use from IT Cosmetics to treat and hide it

 

Rosacea month - the best products to use from IT Cosmetics to treat and hide it
All of these products, apart from the CC cream, were kindly gifted to me. I have repeatedly repurchased the CC cream for five years, since I first bought it on a trip to the U.S.


In case you weren't aware, April is Rosacea month, and I was kindly invited to a presentation on the best products to treat and cover the areas of redness, by IT Cosmetics, which really does appear to be the best brand to use if this is an issue for you, as they have thought of everything! 1 in 10 people have rosacea, which means that they suffer from redness of the skin, flushing, skin that is hot to touch, and also texture that looks like spots, but they aren't actually spots. Because IT Cosmetics was created with sensitive skin in mind, it aims to troubleshoot any skincare concern, not just through makeup, but also skincare, and was developed in conjunction with plastic surgeons in the U.S. It tries not to use any fragrance in its products, as this can be a trigger for reactive skin. Whilst I don't have rosacea, I do have reactive skin, which can become inflamed and red. I actually asked my doctor once if he thought I might have Lupus, because the redness mainly occurs across my cheeks (and a butterfly shape of redness is sometimes indicative of Lupus), so I think I'm in a good position to test these products.

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Saturday, 17 April 2021

L'Oreal Paris Dream Lengths Wonder Water - how does it compare to Kérastase K-Water?

 

L'Oreal Paris Dream Lengths Wonder Water - how does it compare to Kérastase K-Water?


Sorry for my unexpected break from the blog. I'll be honest, I just didn't feel like posting and I never want anything to be forced, so I just took the week off! But I'm back now, with the rest of the month's posts planned and I'm excited to be blogging again. 

I first mentioned Kérastase K-Water on the blog last summer (post here), and, although expensive, I was happy to pay the price for the mirror-like finish that it gave my hair, plus a little goes a long way.  My only criticism was the dispenser - I felt that there was a lot of wastage and that a spray bottle would be more effective and easier to use. Earlier his year, people started to rave about L'Oreal Paris Elvive Dream Lengths 8 Second Hair Treatment, and mentioned that it was similar to K-Water, but a hell of a lot cheaper, so of course I had to try it and compare.

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Saturday, 10 April 2021

By Terry Brightening CC Palette - Beach Bomb. Review & Swatches

 

By Terry Brightening CC Palette - Beach Bomb. Review & Swatches


Last year when By Terry released their Spring collection, the Brightening CC Palette was the star of the show (review and swatches here) - it sold out so quickly, re-stocked and sold out in an instant again and then I think it was re-stocked just before Christmas. It was one of my favourite makeup purchases from last year, so when I saw that a new one was being released this year - Beach Bomb, I wanted t immediately. My sensible head told me that I didn't need it as I'm nowhere even near hitting pan on last year's, but the shades are just so pretty, so I caved! Plus I used a discount code on it. My LYMIN code will save you 20% if you buy it on Look Fantastic.

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Thursday, 8 April 2021

Five fab Spring fragrances

 

Five fab Spring fragrances
Anything marked with a * was kindly gifted to me, without obligation.

I absolutely love Spring (even though we've has both sun and snow in the past week!) and I love fragrance, so I thought I'd combine the two and tell you which fragrances I am really enjoying wearing at the moment. I wear perfume every day, even if it's a duvet day and I even wear it to bed! It makes me happy & lifts my spirits. I have quite a large collection, which I'm trying to curate to just my favourites, but it's tricky because I love so many. Sometimes I wish I had a signature scent that I never strayed from, but that's just never going to happen!  Here are the ones that are currently on rotation most frequently.

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Tuesday, 6 April 2021

My night-time post-skincare routine....

 

Night-time routine to get a good night's sleep
Anything marked with a * was kindly gifted to me, without obligation.

I've shown you my night-time skincare routine on here many times and it changes regularly too, but today I thought I'd share what I routinely do, once I've done my skincare, to ensure that I wind down and get a good night's sleep. Sleep is so important to help us to repair, heal and renew - even more so when we're ill.

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Friday, 2 April 2021

Some Becca repurchases...

 

Some Becca repurchases
None of these are gifted items.

I mentioned in this post how sad I am that Becca cosmetics will be closing in September.  I love so many products, so I took a chance to stock up while I can. I'm still waiting for one more item to arrive (a backup of C Pop - formerly known as Champagne Pop), and I'm actually tempted to buy a few more lipsticks, because this is my first time to try them and it's love! Here's what I got....

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Wednesday, 31 March 2021

What I've loved in March

 

None of these items were gifted to me.


I'll be honest, March has been a crap month for me. My cats died, I'm still very ill and two very close family members are very ill, with the prognoses unknown at the moment. It's been a tough month, but I'm a firm believer in finding positivity where you can, so I'll share the few things that I've enjoyed this month with you today.

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Saturday, 27 March 2021

A retinol for sensitive skin from IT Cosmetics and first impressions....

 

IT Cosmetics Hello Fresh Wrinkle Reducing Daily Retinol Serum In Cream Review
This product was kindly gifted to me, without obigation.

A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to be invited to the (online) launch of the latest skincare offering from IT Cosmetics. I was extremely intrigued because I know that the brand always keeps sensitive skin in mind (and develops its skincare products with plastic surgeons), but we all know that retinol can cause irritation. I was also intrigued by the fact that its a serum in a cream. The brand kindly sent out silk pyjamas, an eye mask, the new product and their well loved Confidence In A Cream Moisturiser* and Eye Cream*. The star of the show and main focus of the event was the new release: Hello Fresh Wrinkle Reducing Daily Retinol Serum-In_Cream*. Obviously with a retinol product, it's too early to give a full review, but I wanted to tell you a bit about it an give my first impressions, as this is already selling out!

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Thursday, 25 March 2021

3 treats for 3 budgets

 

3 treats for 3 budgets, Honest Beauty Hydrogel Cream review,  Decree SOS Revitalising Mask Review, Benefit They're Real! Magnetic Mascara Review
All of these products were kindly gifted to me, without obligation.


Well, it's been a while! You may have wondered where I've been or maybe you didn't even notice, but I'm going to tell you anyway! On Friday, March 12th, one of my cats died - I know you shouldn't have favourites, but he really was mine! He was so bold, brazen, cheeky and adorable and spent 90% of his time by my side. I always said that he got me through Covid and all of the shit that came with it since. He was an indoor cat, but liked to go outside for maybe 30-60 minutes, either in the morning in the evening, to run up the trees and just burn off some of his crazy energy. That day, he ran, at speed, on to the road and was killed. When I say that my heart shattered, it doesn't even come close. I know that some people will say that animals shouldn't make us so upset, but he was part of the family. I obviously know that losing a person is worse, but my heart is still broken. Then on the following Monday, the 15th, our other cat was due with the vet for a checkup, as we thought she might need her teeth cleaned, and just a general checkup. He phoned us in the afternoon to say that her bloods had shown she had a virus, which the vaccinations don't protect against - a cat we had in 2008, had the same thing (it's rare, but lightning obviously strikes twice). He said that the options were to give her some medication, but she would deteriorate over the coming weeks/months, or to put her to sleep. We knew that we couldn't handle watching her die slowly, so we chose to euthanise. It was better for her too. You just couldn't make it up! Alongside this, I am still not over the pneumonia that I got months ago - it just won't shift and at this point, because of my symptoms, my GP is saying that I have long-Covid, on top of my Chronic Lyme. So basically, I needed a break and really wasn't in the mood for writing about beauty! I also needed time to  grieve for my two cats, rest and try to just let my body heal a little. 

So that's where I've been, but I've always said that my blog is a distraction and I most definitely need one of those right now, so I'm easing myself back in, starting with one of my favourite posts that I do monthly - 3 treats for 3 budgets. I've always loved to treat myself - any excuse really! And, like I always say, you don't need to spend a lot! 

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Sunday, 14 March 2021

The 6 best foundations for dry skin featuring Pat McGrath, By Terry, IT Cosmetics and more!

 

The best foundations for dry skin


Having dry skin makes it quite tricky to find the right foundation, as it can cling to dry areas. Skincare is key, no matter what the skin type, however with dry skin, the wrong foundation can age you, plus dry skin is naturally dull, so generally foundations that add some luminosity or dewiness are best. My all time favourite foundation was Armani Hydra Glow, which was discontinued years ago, and it was been tricky to find one that has lived up to my forever love! I have tried so many foundations, and have a line up of six that work beautifully on dry skin.

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Friday, 12 March 2021

Brand Focus: Wishful

 
Brand Focus: Wishful

Another month, another Brand Focus post! This month, I've decided on Wishful, which is Huda Kattan's skincare line. She started slowly, with one product and has gradually added more. Huda spent years working on this range, (with labs, of course), due to struggling with her own skin for years.  I've tried all but one skincare product, but none of her tools as I think they're a bit gimmicky (feel free to correct me if you've tried them!), and I use a Foreo. Given that Huda's makeup products are quite pricey, I was pleasantly surprised by the price point of her skincare line and I like that she offers small sizes, so that you can buy, without spending too much money - something which more and more brands seem to be doing. Out of the seven actual skincare products, I have tested six, so let's get on with the post!

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Wednesday, 10 March 2021

My favourite Becca products....

 

My favourite Becca products


I know that I'm not the only person who was both shocked and saddened by the announcement last week, that Becca Cosmetics will be closing in September. It was inevitable that many brands would suffer as a result of the pandemic, but for some reason, I didn't think that Becca would be one of them. They have been renowned for their glowing skin products for years and have collaborated with big names, like Jaclyn Hill (who created Champagne Pop), and Khloe Kardashian, over the years and I'm sure that most beauty lovers have bought at least one of their products. Their price point has always been around the mid-budget range, and not only did they do glowing skin products well, but they also catered for those who like a matte finish. I will admit that I found their recent Zero No Pigment range to be a little odd, but they were trying to do something different and their Skin Love range seemed to be overlooked a little. Maybe they needed the big names to sell their products, maybe people were over the 'glow', or maybe they just didn't invest enough in PR, because we're all aware that the 'big influencers' tend to have content that predominantly consists of gifted products and paid work. Who knows the exact reason for the decline, but it's very sad that it has come to this. I wanted to share my favourite products from the brand with you today and if anything catches your eye, you might still be able to get it, as I've noticed that products are selling out quickly! Look Fantastic still have quite a bit of stock and my LYMIN code will save you 20%.

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Monday, 8 March 2021

Mother's Day Gift Guide 2021

 

Mother's Day Gift Guide 2021, pearl necklace
If a product was gifted to me, it will be marked with a *

In case you weren't aware (because all days blur into one in lockdown), Mother's Day in the UK & Ireland is next Sunday, the 14th. I'm a little later than usual bringing you my gift guide, but better later than never! I know that it's tricky this year (as it was last year), with the restrictions and many people won't see their mothers on the day itself, and I'm sure they'd all prefer a phone call or a card, to any gift, nevertheless, I have some lovely gift ideas, which you can order to be delivered directly to your mother. Anything marked with a * was kindly gifted to me, without obligation.

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Saturday, 6 March 2021

REN Glow Up Challenge!

 

REN Glow Up Challenge Review
These products were kindly sent to me, without obligation.

You've probably seen a lot of REN Clean Skincare* #Glowupchallenge posts floating around social media in recent weeks, and I was delighted when Cult Beauty* sent me the three products to join in. I know that the term 'clean' in skincare is quite divisive, but this brand is committed to being clean to the planet, with zero waste by the end of 2021, with recycled, recyclable and reusable packaging solutions, so even if the term clean skincare bothers you, surely a brand committed to zero waste is not something you can complain about! I was kindly sent three products to try from the radiance range, which is one I have tried some products from previously and loved: Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask and Wake Wonderful Night Time Facial

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Thursday, 4 March 2021

By Terry Hyaluronic Hydra Concealer - worth the hype?

By Terry Hyaluronic Hydra Concealer - worth the hype?


By Terry is an expensive brand, but I've yet to come across a dud product from them. When I saw all of the "big bloggers" raving about their new Hyaluronic Hydra Concealer, I had to give it a go, because I adore the Hyaluronic Hydra Foundation, which was released last year (use the code LYMIN at checkout on Look Fantastic to save 20% on these and many other brands!). I have dry skin, so anything with hyaluronic acid in it, is always right up my street, but will the concealer live up to the hype?

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Tuesday, 2 March 2021

A simplified skincare routine with U Beauty

A simplified skincare routine with U Beauty
These products were kindly gifted to me, without obligation.


I had never heard of U Beauty* before a parcel landed on my desk in the latter months of last year, but when I started to read the information, I was instantly intrigued because the basis of the brand is that you don't need to use a large number of products - just a cleanser and two U Beauty* products - The Resurfacing Compound* and The Super Smart Hydrator*. As a beauty junkie, I enjoy a good pamper session, but there are certainly times when a short and simple, but effective, routine sounds perfect. For me, that was when these products arrived, as I had double pneumonia, which left me very low on energy, and it still hasn't shifted, so I was really able to test these products, as the timing was perfect.

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Sunday, 28 February 2021

What I've loved in February....

 

What I've loved in February, Honest Beauty review, Hairburst Brow Serum Review
Anything that was kindly gifted to me, with obligation, is marked with a *


This month has really flown by and I am so here for Spring! Hearing the birds in the morning and seeing the Spring flowers bloom, makes me so happy. I just feel that it brings hope and I look forward to the longer days to come. We're still in lockdown and will be for a good number of weeks, but I personally am happy with that because I fee safer. My mother got the first dose of the vaccine, which is brilliant, as we hadn't expected it so early, but she got a call and a few hours later, had her jab and without any side effects. It just feels like progress, which is great. Hopefully my Dad will be called soon. I have no idea if or when I'll be getting it (due to my illnesses), but I am hopeful. I need to have a good chat with my GP, but for the moment, I'm just so grateful to be on medication to control the pain, reduce the inflammation in my body, and to help my breathing. I would urge you all to take the vaccination, because I can tell you that my personal story of Covid has been hell - a year later, I am still suffering. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. Spring brings hope, as does the vaccination! Anyway, back to what I've loved this month.

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Friday, 26 February 2021

Essences - are they necessary or gimmicks?

 

Essences - are they necessary or gimmicks?
Anything marked with a * was kindly gifted to me, without obligation.

The first essence I ever tried was gifted to me - had it not been, I'm unsure that I would have tried one as I wasn't sure that I actually needed one in my routine - how wrong was I? You can read that post here. I have gone on to repurchase Omoressence many, many times and am still using it almost five years later! So what is an essence and do you really need it? An essence is a kind of toner-come facial mist-come serum, so why would you need to use one if you already use these products? It kind of sandwiches the products together, which enhances the protection of the skin barrier and helps to banish dehydration. It's probably not what most people would consider an essential step, yet if you use an essence regularly, your skin will thank you in the form of looking plump and juicy. I have three that I love and want to share with you today.

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Wednesday, 24 February 2021

3 treats for 3 budgets

 

U Beauty Resurfacing Compound,3 treats for 3 budgets,Keys Skincare Golden Cleanser,BECCA Tinted Moisturiser,
Anything marked with a * was kindly gifted to me, without obligation.

It's that time of the month again, when people get paid, feel rich for a day until all direct debits leave the account and then reality sets in! Don't worry, you can still treat yourself without breaking the bank, and I have three fab products for you, depending on your budget, or they could be used as gift ideas if you have any upcoming celebrations for beauty lovers!

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Monday, 22 February 2021

REVIEW: Lumene Face Masks

 

Lumene Nordic Hydra Oxygen Recovery 72h Hydra Gel Mask Lumene Nordic-C Fresh Glow Brightening Gel Mask,


Lumene* is a skincare brand that was on my radar for most of last year and the more reviews I read, the more I thought I would enjoy it. It's a Finnish brand, which uses Pure Arctic Spring Water in its products (which will make them soothing), which are all reasonably priced and most are currently reduced on Look Fantastic. There are different lines, depending on what your skin needs, but the main aim is to replenish the skin. I was kindly sent two masks to try back in November, and am ready to share my thoughts on them with you now.

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Friday, 19 February 2021

Review: Banish Skincare


Review: Banish Skincare
These products were kindly sent to me, without obligation.


When I was first asked if I wanted to try Banish skincare*, I hesitated as I don't have acne, however the more I read about the range, the more intrigued I was, because the products also deal with scarring and texture, both of which are issues that I deal with. I have never had professional micro needling (although I have a voucher for a facial, which I'll use whenever lockdown is lifted and we can visit salons again!), but it has always intrigued me. I was kindly sent the complete Banish Starter Kit* to try, without any obligation, which I have been trialling since October, and I want to share my thoughts with you today. Just to add, you don't need to buy the whole kit, you can purchase the products that you think will suit your skin best, individually.

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Wednesday, 17 February 2021

My makeup staples from 15 years ago - have they stood the test of time?

 

My makeup staples from 15 years ago - have they stood the test of time?


I've always loved all things beauty - some of my earliest memories are looking through my mother's makeup bag (and probably ruining some of her products), but my mother has always been more invested in skincare and that meant that I was the same. I probably started wearing makeup at age 13/14 - just some mascara, and got more into it at 16/17. Before blogging, I got all of my info from magazines, and was a marketer's dream, so I always bought the latest "best thing", particularly in skincare, until I settled into only using Dermalogica for years (still a staple in my collection), before adding in Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair, as another staple. Rather than having whole drawer units of both makeup and skincare, I had a makeup case and a consistent stash of skincare in my bathroom. I did try new products, but I had core products that I loved and knew I could rely on, but 15 years on, would (or do) I still use them?

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Friday, 12 February 2021

How to deal with backne and bumpy skin

 

How to deal with backne and bumpy skin
Both of these products were kindly gifted to me, however I buy from both brands myself too.


We hear a lot about maskne at the moment, which for a lot of people is hard to avoid, if they have to wear masks all day for work - or for some, it's for any amount of time. (Just remember to wash your mask if you've worn it for more than 20 minutes, or at the very least, as Luke O'Neill says "treat them like your underwear and wash them daily". But you don't see people talk about backne very much, even though it affects a lot of people. So, what is backne? As the name suggests, spots on the back, which may not bother you now, as we're all covered up (it has been sooooo cold here, recently!), but it probably will bother you in Spring/Summer. Also, a lot of people suffer from spots on their chest. I tend to use my skincare from the boobs up, so my chest is fine, unless I am extremely run down, in which case, I may get a spot or two on my neck. Back to backne (excuse the pun!) - I have two brilliant products, which will help to treat backne and bumpy skin, in general.

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Wednesday, 10 February 2021

21 Questions: Makeup Edition

 

21 Questions: Makeup Edition


Tags were so popular when I first started blogging, but not so much nowadays, however when the lovely Parie from Class & Glitter tagged me to do this, I knew I had to, because the questions are fun (and I'm nosy, so I enjoyed reading her answers, and Hannah's too). I'd love to hear your answers to any of these questions!

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Monday, 8 February 2021

Shopping online since Brexit began for those outside the UK......

 

Shopping online since Brexit began for those outside the UK

I don't think that I'l ever forget the morning I woke to hear that the Brexiteers had won the referendum! I thought that anything could happen in this crazy wold after that (and it did - Trump was president for four years - will it get any crazier than that because I don't know if we could cope with it, on top of Covid?!). My first thought was "what the f*ck?", my second was that surely there would be a second referendum - surely this couldn't happen, but on December 31st last, it did. For those outside of the UK, this now means that purchasing from UK stores/sites, means that the buyer may now have to pay additional import charges and VAT (depending on where the product is manufactured and if the value of the product is more than 22 euros including delivery). It also means that your EU rights are void. There are so many things to consider, which I want to discuss today.

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Saturday, 6 February 2021

Five moisturisers that are perfect for dry skin in winter (plus a bonus product!)

 

Five moisturisers that are perfect for dry skin in winter (plus a bonus product!)
Anything marked with a * was kindly gifted to me, without obligation.


Regular readers are definitely aware by now that I have very dry skin, but by keeping on top of my routine, it doesn't necessarily always cause me problems. I have curated my skincare stash and know what to do for my skin to keep it soft, supple and plump. Of course, there are times when it needs some extra help - most of my regular readers will know that I have suffered badly since contracting Covid last year - illness, medication and lack of energy/motivation can cause my skin to suffer, but there are some products I know I can rely on to get the moisture back into my skin. Rather than run through my entire skincare stash, I thought I'd share five brilliant moisturisers for dry skin, and one bonus product, that has really helped my skin over the past few months.

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Thursday, 4 February 2021

Express Tan Comparison: St Tropez VS Tanologist

 

Express Tan Comparison: St Tropez VS Tanologist,
I bought both of these myself.


I don't know about you, but I love applying some tan as a pick me up - I just feel better when I'm tanned, healthier even? And I need all the help I can get in that department at the moment! I'm generally a weekly tanner - #tanthursday is a thing in my life! That said, there are times when trying a new tan, I find that it doesn't last as long as my usual one and I'll need a top up - this is where express tans come into play. I'll say upfront that, in general,  I'm not the biggest fan of express tans because I just don't believe that they will give a deep tan in 1 hour, but they are useful if you have a last minute occasion (in 2022!!), and you have forgotten to tan. I can't fathom how people can get dressed and go out wearing them, because no mater what people say, they smell like biscuits as they develop! The only exception is the St Tropez Purity Gel, which smells like a fruit cocktail, but that isn't marketed as an express tan. Today, I'm comparing Tanologist 1 Hr Express Tan Mousse in Extra Dark with St Tropez Self Tan Express Bronzing Gel. Will either of them win me over?

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Tuesday, 2 February 2021

Brand Focus: Summer Fridays

Brand Focus: Summer Fridays
Anything marked with a * was kindly gifted, without obligation.


Over the Christmas break, I was looking back at what were my most popular posts, not just last year, but it previous years too, and standing out overwhelmingly, were my Brand Focus posts so naturally, I've decided to bring them back! I've done a lot of mainstream brands, so this time around, I'd like to do some newer brands, starting today with Summer Fridays, which is a brand that was created by two bloggers who had tried almost every product on the market, but wanted to create their own streamlined range of effective products, so they teamed up with experts to do just that! It started with just one mask and has steadily grown, which I personally love, because I'm not a huge fan of new brands releasing a whole line at once - I feel that focusing on one product and doing it right, is the best way to go and then add further products when you know that the first is a success. I've tried all but one product from the brand and want to share my thoughts with you today. I'l start by saying that I love the aesthetic - simple, pastel colours with the logo and product names. Simple, but pretty. Anything marked with a * was kindly gifted to me without obligation, but I bought most products myself.

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Sunday, 31 January 2021

What I've loved in January......

 

Anything marked with a * was kindly gifted to me, without obligation.


I know that so may people hate January and say it's the worst month of the year, but I don't think that way - we're lucky to be alive to see it and live it. There are so many people who aren't here, but would have loved to live through January - it's important to be grateful. I feel like the month has flown by because my husband was off work until the 11th and then I had two medical appointments in the last week, so it's kind of flown by really. Plus, I love that the snowdrops are out and there is a bit of a stretch in the evenings. The medication I take makes me very sleepy, so I need to nap every afternoon, and waking to a slightly light evening is so much better than waking up in the dark! I want to share some of the things that I've loved this month....

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Friday, 29 January 2021

My 2021 luxury wish list!

 



Since I started blogging, my spending has gotten so much better - I used to buy so many new releases and far more products than I could ever use, or possibly need. In recent years, I have focused more on buying products that I actually need - with a few slip ups, however I am certainly focused on finishing products before buying too many more and I've cut down on the products I will accept as P.R.. With regards my clothes and accessories, I have been trying to focus on buying quality items, rather than fast fashion. To be honest, in 2020, I really didn't buy many clothes at all, because I was so ill & was at home 99% of the time. This year, I want to take it even further. I am going through my wardrobes and chests of drawers and whilst I'm certainly not aiming for a capsule wardrobe (I love clothes and accessories too much for that!), my plan is to see what's missing from my wardrobe (probably not much), and buy those, but at the best quality that I can afford. I'm sharing my wishlist with you today - it's mainly accessories, but there are a few other luxury items on my wishlist, which I am hoping to buy this year. If I buy fewer products that I really love, rather than like, I'm hoping that I can tick them all off my list - it will be interesting to re-visit at the end of the year! If you own any of these, I'd love to hear your thoughts on whether or not you think they are worth the money?

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Wednesday, 27 January 2021

3 treats for 3 budgets....

 

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette Vo,l II,Kosas 10 Second Liquid Eyeshadow,PCA Bond Hair Repair Treatment,3 treats for 3 budgets Jan 2020,


I haven't done a 3 treats for 3 budgets post since October, because in November, I did gift guides and I never do these posts in December, as I think people are either shopping the (early) sales, or just buying gifts, but it's January and that long-awaited payday is looming so, welcome to my first post in this series of 2021! As I always say, you don't need to spend a lot to treat yourself!

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Monday, 25 January 2021

Winter bodycare loves

 

Winter bodycare loves
Anything gifted to me, without obligation, will be marked with a *l

I wear body lotion every day because if I didn't, my skin would be so uncomfortable, itchy and scaly! I also apply fake tan weekly, which means that I have to exfoliate regularly. Even in winter, when my limbs are not on show, I like to take care of the skin on my body. Today, I want to share some of my current loves. If a product was kindly gifted to me, I will mark it with a * but I have also repurchased some of the products that were previously gifted.

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Tuesday, 19 January 2021

My 20 favourite purchases of 2020

 

My 20 favourite purchases of 2020
I bought all of these products myself.

I did several favourites posts at the end of 2020, but I didn't do one solely dedicated to products that I purchased myself - all of the others contained a mixture of products received in PR and products I purchased. Today,  it's all about products I bought myself and it's not just beauty product because I want to incorporate some of my other loves into the blog this year. I could have chosen any number, but thought I'd do 20, given the year was 2020!

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Sunday, 17 January 2021

Having a crap day? How to change it!

 

Having a crap day? How to change it!

There's no doubting that no matter how positive a person you are, there were days in 2020 that were just crap and difficult to keep the chin up (and this year, whilst we have more hope with the vaccine, it will be a while before life is in any way 'normal' again). Not really being able to make plans and losing control of your life is not easy for anyone. Couple that with financial worries, health worries and not being able to see people, let alone hug them, is just not easy - it doesn't come naturally to us as human beings. The one thing that we can control in the midst of all of this, is our attitude, so today I want share some ideas, which can change and improve our days.

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Friday, 15 January 2021

Some products that I have been loving and using on repeat in recent weeks......

 

Some products that I have been loving and using on repeat in recent weeks

I have had so many new products to try over the past few months, thanks to my advent calendar, but also some Black Friday and sales purchases, that it was almost overwhelming at one point (not complaining though!). That said, I have noticed that there are a number of products that I just reach for on repeat, because I know that I love them, I know they will do exactly what I want them to do, and when I'm not feeling well, they are dependable. Sometimes, you just need these products in your life, instead of constantly looking for the next best thing! I'm going to share some of my current go-tos with you today....

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Wednesday, 13 January 2021

The products to use when you want super-soft skin FAST!

The products to use when you want super-soft skin FAST!
If a product was kindly gifted to me, without obligation to post, it is marked with a *


I think that we all want super soft skin - products apply more evenly on it and it tends to be smoother. I'm not talking about flawless, filtered-looking skin, as most of us have texture and pores - I'm talking about realistic skin that is as soft as it can be! I  find that I use less makeup when my skin is really soft. Keeping skin smooth and soft is something that requires consistency, but what happens if you don't have time? You have an occasion (remember those?!), or reason to look at your best, and know that soft skin is the best place to start, so you need something that will work quickly? I have the perfect products for you! Obviously, you don't need them all but I'm a bit of a skincare addict!

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Monday, 11 January 2021

My six favourite products from the Cult Beauty Advent Calendar......

 

My six favourite products from the Cult Beauty Advent Calendar 2020

Happy New Year! Is it too late to still say that? I don't think so, especially as this is my first post of the year! Let's hope that 2021 is a much better year for us all! Also, I just wanted to add that Lockdown 3.0 is not a bad thing - it's to protect us all and has to be done because, unfortunately some people just ignored the rules and the virus, forgetting that the virus loves people and gatherings, so of course the end result would be skyrocketing numbers. We need this lockdown to try to get it under control. You do not want Covid - believe me! I would take 50 lockdowns over Covid - that's how bad it is, so look at this third one as hopefully the last and try to do something positive, or watch something that makes you laugh, every day.

If you watched my Instastories in December, you will have seen me opening the Cult Beauty Advent Calendar every morning. It really was the highlight of my day and, by far, the best advent calendar that I've ever had. I know that it's expensive, but the RRP is so much higher than the actual price and I genuinely wasn't at all disappointed by anything in the calendar. I'd recommend putting some money in an envelope (if you're old-fashioned like I am), or a Revolut pot, each week, to save for it if you think that it's too much of an expense in one go. I promise you that it's totally worth it. I also hope that there will be more released this year, as it sold out so quickly last year! You can actually sign up for the waitlist for this year already here!

I love that there are 25 doors, so even on Christmas Day, you get a treat (five products actually!) and I also love that the box is reusable - I'm thinking I'll fill it for my Mam this year.

Anyway, on to the point of today's post - my six favourite products from the calendar. I honestly wasn't disappointed by anything, but I've narrowed it down to my absolute favourites - the ones I'll use every drop of and go on to repurchase. Let's get started....

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