December favourites.

gennaio 22, 2015

Am I the only one that always finds it so hard to put together her December favourites? I swear I've spent days thinking about the products that I've been loving in the past month but all I could think of were the glitters and all the food. Anyways, I've racked my brains a little harder and eventually I was able to round up a handful of beauty bits I've been loving lately...

Base wise, in December I've swapped my foundations and powders quite a lot, but my go-to concealer has been the MAC Pro Longwear Concealer (£17) for pretty much 31 days in a row. I'm not so keen on the packaging, as it dispenses enough product to paint a wall with no matter how gently you press the pump, but the concealer itself is quite amazing. It's perfect both for the under-eyes and blemishes, as it covers literally everything without looking cakey or pulling on the skin, and with a soft satin finish it's surprisingly natural looking, considering the high coverage and the extended wear.
Another favourite is the NARS Dual Intensity Eyeshadow (£21) in Himalia, a shimmering bronzy gold that on the lid shows a hint of rose gold as well. I can't get over how awesome this double duty formula is: soft, easy to blend and fully opaque in one swipe. As the name suggests, it can be used dry for a slightly muted metallic wash of colour shot through with a gentle shimmer, or wet for a stunning and uber intense true-to-pan foiled finish. Will definitely be picking up a few more shades in the future.

For my lips, whenever the festive red lippies were put on the side, I've been going back and forth between two beautiful and very different shades. I feel like I've talked so much about NARS lip pencils over the past months but they should seriously come with a warning since one leads to another, and another, and another. Although I find the satin formula a bit more drying than the matte one and therefore not so kind with textured lips, someone will have to surgically remove NARS Yu Satin Lip Pencil (£18) - a brightening shocking blue pink - from my hands because I won't be putting this beauty away any time soon.
MAC Beet Lip Pencil (£12.50) is another more seasonal appropriate obsession. It's a matte beetroot reddish pink - nice spot-on name you got there, MAC - that is just so lovely all over the lips as an alternative to a lipstick and lasts very well throughout the day. The MAC formula is still one of my favourites when it comes to lip crayons as it's really fabulous, non-drying and comes in an impressive range of shades.

Next up is The Body Shop Glazed Apple Body Butter (£13), which was unfortunately a limited edition for the Holidays but hopefully will do a come back next year because it smells absolutely divine. I've tried a lot of different products but I always go back to The. Body Shop when it comes to body moisturizers as they work really well for my dry skin, come in so many different delicious scents and leave my limbs nourished and uber soft for days.

Last but not least, a home fragrance favourite that comes is the shape of the gorgeous Diptyque Baies Candle (£20)*. True to scent and so powerful it can fill the whole house with beautiful notes of wood berries and flowers by the lake in a few minutes, it's such a lovely treat on a cold and gloomy day and something I'll be definitely repurchasing in a larger size very soon.

What have been your favourite things last month?
*Press Sample

Winter Evening skincare routine.

gennaio 01, 2015

My skin doesn't love winter weather - both the piercing cold outdoors and the central heating inside invariably turn it into a flaky and puffy mess as soon as the temperature starts to drop - and it usually takes an awful lot of hydrating masks and oils to keep it in a fairly decent state. However at the minute my skin is in pretty good condition and it's mostly because I've been using a range of products that works extremely well for me and I've been really enjoying. Here's my current rotation...

I start off with the lovely and uber gentle The Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil (£10) to dissolve and remove all my makeup. This stuff is simply divine, as it easily melts every single trace of foundation and eye makeup, including the most stubborn waterproof mascara, and doesn't leave my skin feeling stripped or tight. I massage a pump of this over dry skin and work it in using my fingertips for a good minute before wiping it off with a flannel and warm water. I then reach for the Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel (£28) to double cleanse and make sure that my face is really clean. I'm completely obsessed with this cleanser: it nourishes and cares for the skin, keeping it balanced and hydrated, whilst lifting grime and dead skin cells for instant luminosity. I pop the flannel under the tap to warm it up with hot water and then press it over my face for a minute to soften the skin and help it get the most from the ingredients, before rinsing everything off.

After that it's time for Lush Full of Grace Serum Bar (£8.25), a solid serum that nourishes my skin so well and makes everything I apply on top of it work even better. It smells beautifully, it's really soothing and helps calming any redness and relieving dryness pretty much instantly.
Over the serum I apply a pea size amount of the Origins High Potency Night-a-Mins (£34.50) mixed with a couple drops of the Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate (£36). This combo is truly a godsend for my dry and dehydrated skin. The Origins moisturizer is rich but sinks in quickly and goes to work immediately, balancing and nourishing my complexion, while the Kiehl's oil helps blemishes and scars heal faster and overall dramatically improves my skin. Thanks to these two I wake up with plump and radiant skin every morning without fail.

For eyes, recently I've been trying out the Super Facialist by Una Brennan Neroli Firming Illuminate Eye Cream (£11.99), which was kind of an impulse buy but turned out to be great in the end. It hydrates the eye area well but doesn't feel heavy or too rich and it's a good affordable option if you are after something light yet effective for your under-eye.
The final step before hitting the sack is a good helping of lip balm, as I suffer from very dry lips no matter how much water I drink or product I use. The only thing that really seems to work for me and basically the one product I've been using consistently over the past three years is the Nuxe Reve de Miel Lip balm (£9.50). I'm sure everyone and their dog know already how much I love this little pot of lemon tart-scented goodness. It's brilliant for instant relief of chapped and cracked lips and it's without doubt a holy grail find.

What are your evening essentials?