27 January 2013

The Multitaskers

There's more than meets the eye when it comes to certain products, in fact, they can make other skin, hair and body care look pretty darn lazy. Oh yes, I'm talking about those which  can multifunction, multi-task and generally save time, space and cash towards your beauty stash.

Come to think of it there are plenty more products which do just this, more so in the makeup department so I kept that section to the bare minimum and I'll let your own imaginations run beauty wild, but here's an edit of some multi-purpose faves, including an entire facial in a pot, all-in-one oils and a hair hero with triple the tricks. If you're not such a light toiletry packer (guilty!) these are great to lighten the luggage load for holidays and travelling, or even to sort you out on one of those 'lazy gal' days where your full beauty routine goes straight out the window... (Don't say you don't have 'em!).

25 January 2013

Bare Eyes & Berry Lips

Winter is looking like it's well and truly here to stay, but I'm not complaining if my latest seasonal-appropriate look is anything to go by. It's a known fact I like to embrace a lively lip given the chance, my collection of nudes and neutrals quickly becoming over-run by bolds and brights. With my eye makeup makeup kept to the minimum most days, I've been putting two and two together, mastering up something barely there on the lids yet something 'berry' there on the lips..

For my face base, I blended in YSL's Le Teint Touch Eclat in B30 with no other than the Real Techniques Buffing Brush. A light coverage with a second-skin, glowy, flawless finish - foundation perfection! I dabbed over any blemishes and covered my under-eye circles with Bourjois' Healthy Mix concealer before adding a pink flush to my cheeks with UNE's Breezy Cheeks Blush in B02. A touch of Clinique's Superfine Liner in 'Soft Blonde' sorted the brows and MAC's Painterly Paint Pot primed and prepped my lids. My palette pick of the moment has to be Urban Decay's NAKED Basics and it's been rustling up a subtle Winter smoky eye with Venus as a tear-duct highlight, W.O.S swept across the lid, Naked 2 through the crease and packed on the upper lash-line. I layered on lashings of Bourjois' Elastic Mascara - a very 'wet' formula indeed, but it lengthens and lasts, then my eyes were complete.

The limelight was on the lips, my product of choice being YSL's Rouge Pur Couture Vernis A Lévres Glossy Stain in Fuchsia Dore - a bright pinky purple shade on first impressions but builds up to a beautiful, bold berry. Its tear-drop shaped sponge glides on this liquid lipstick leaving an ultra shiny, non-gloopy finish - first application dries matte, but after a second and third coat your left with a long-lasting, polished pout.

With 26 colours in total, plus four new shades just added (#27 Peche Cerra-Cola looks particularly pretty!), I'm sure it won't be long until I'm back swooning over the counter at more Glossy Stains - maybe leaving with some more Summery shades in hand...

14 January 2013

Best of Beauty 2012


A new year, a never ending wishlist of new products that I'm more than eager to get my hands on, (a sale splurge may have already happened!) but before leaving last year in the past, I scooped up the best of beauty in 2012 and dedicated a near fifteen minute ramble to them. There's a good mixture thrown into each category, featuring my makeup must-haves, haircare heroes and skincare staples, most of which have wiggled their way into my everyday routine and will be repurchases without a doubt.

With that wishlist longer than my arm and many new exciting releases and convincing collections on the horizon, I feel 2013 is looking to be just as successful.. Here's to another year of beauty-routine changing product discoveries.. *Cheers!*

10 January 2013

The Detox Facial

With overindulging in festive foods, trekking, travelling and my usual beauty routine being up in the air, my skin hasn't been all too happy recently so on return to my skincare stash I knew my complexion wouldn't say no to a good old clean in the way of a 'Detox Facial'...

A deep cleanse was in first in order, my current choice being Emma Hardie's Moringa Cleansing Balm which aims to purify and minimise pores, revitalise and rehydrate. I took a larger amount than usual, warmed it up and went on to do a pressure point and drain massage (hopefully explained reasonably well in the garble below!)

Place your first three fingers on both hands flat on your forehead, fingertips pointing in towards each other. Your ring fingers should be where your eyebrows start, middle fingers in the centre of your forehead and index fingers just below your hairline. Press a small amount of pressure with your finger tips, release and move outwards slightly, repeat until you reach the temples. Place the same three fingers on both orbital bones, just below your eye, press and release. Move down to the sides of your nose, onto the upper lip and back to the sides of the nose. Then down to just above your outer jawline, then moving in slightly, finishing with a single pressure point to the centre of your chin using the pad of your thumbDraining should be done towards lymph nodes encouraging toxins and impurities to be removed, in this massage I always drain towards the node just below the temple, in front of the ear. Using the side of your thumbs pointing in towards each other, start from just underneath the inside of your eyebrows, with gentle pressure, sweep towards the node. Then from just above your eyebrows, draining out and then the same again but moving up the forehead first before moving out. Next, drain from the inner corner of your eye across, then from the sides of your nose up and out, from the upper lip up and out and from the sides of the nose again. Sweep from the centre of your jawline up and out, finishing from the centre of your chin, draining up to the ear again. Repeat this whole massage three times over, alternatively it can be done with a facial oil before your mask. Trust me, your face will thank you for it!

I ran an Emma Hardie Professional Cleansing Cloth under warm water, squeezed it out and held the micro-fibre side as a hot compress over my face to open pores before sweeping off the cleanser and applying a second round mixed in with the Emma Hardie Aromatherapy Infused Rosehip Seeds. I gently rolled it over my skin, concentrating on parts where it's been misbehaving most before repeating another hot compress. Onto the ultimate detox treatment, reach for a clay-based mask, they give the pores a good clear-out by withdrawing any dirt - my fave is REN's Invisible Pores Detox Mask. I take a good pump or two, slather it on and leave for 10 minutes before removing with another hot compress.

At this point I didn't want to smear my skin in a rich moisturiser, so I spritzed on Jurlique's Recovery Night Mist, an anti-oxidant concentrate rich in potent botanicals, hydrating the skin and adding radiance whilst protecting from environmental damage - oh, and it smells divine! To keep those pesky puffy eye bags at bay I popped on a layer of Origins No Puffery as an overnight treat. I'll whip out this routine out when my skin is in need of a deep clean, maybe switching up certain products occasionally - writing this up has only made me already crave another!

7 January 2013

Emma Hardie Professional Cleansing Cloths

As much as I enjoy perfecting my complexion, mastering up a new look, or even just having a practice play around with products galore, there is no better feeling that wiping it all off come the end of the day. With Emma Hardie's Moringa Cleansing Balm being the top of my wishlist for sometime, I thought there'd be no better time to throw it in my basket during Feelunique's Winter sale, along with some extra Professional Cleansing Cloths. I'm sure it won't be long until I'm joining in, singing my praises about her cleanser but in the meantime, these cloths certainly deserve a post of their own...

Following a cleanse, muslin cloths have been my remover of choice for a long time but I've never really felt they did a top notch job and even with a quick swipe of a toner soaked cotton pad, I'd still pick up traces of grime. I can't fault them for erasing my eye makeup, but my face always craved deeper cleansing - enter the Dual Action Professional Cleansing Cloths, one side muslin, one side microfibre (that's flannel-like to you & me!). Run under hand hot water, squeeze out and you're good to buff, it leaves skin feeling smooth, soft and completely clean, even for the most sensitive and delicate skin gals. They also make the perfect hot towel compress during a facial (post to come!), hold it over the face until it slowly turns cold - I admit, I had to plonk myself down on the edge of the bath for a minute just to embrace the 'ahhhh' feeling it gives! It has a little loop on one corner too, to hang up and air-dry, ready for its next use - nifty

It's fair to say my regular muslin squares have built up at the very bottom of the pile, replaced with the crème de la crème of cleansing cloths, maybe they'll find another use but I'm pretty sure nothing will ever take over these ones. You can pick up the Emma Hardie Dual Action Professional Cleansing Cloths here for a very small investment and with 20% off! They're worth every penny, and after all, as the title would suggest, I've been left with a truly 'amazing face'!

2 January 2013

In-flight Beauty Essentials

As a reasonably regular flyer I feel I've almost got packing the necessary beauty bits in my hand luggage down to a tee, (let me assure you this is nothing in comparison to the toiletries in my actual suitcase!). For long haul flights, I'm guilty of setting up a skincare station on my fold out table and giving myself a full on facial much to the amusement of other passengers around me, but for shorter haul flights its all about the simple essentials. 

I tend to head off to the airport with nothing but a thin layer of moisturiser, this time my product of choice being the Institute Esthederm Recovery Care Cream, light but extremely nourishing. Upon take off I applied another generous layer then for eyes, I patted on a dollop of Origins No Puffery Cooling Mask to refresh and tame my tired eyes and left on as an all-day treatment works pretty well even under makeup. My current multi-use weapon of choice, Dr Lipp's Nipple Balm for Lips keeps a dry, chapped pout at bay and also works well rubbed into cuticles. I then tidied up my nail tips with the Stylfile Emergency File and to seal the deal, I covered my hands with the This Works Perfect Hands hand cream in a travel friendly size. 

Just before touching down, I try to make myself a little more put together with a few basic makeup bits. A caking of foundation isn't always the best look after being up in the clouds, so I opted for a light covering of the Dr Jart Water Fuse BB Cream which gives a natural, fresh look to the skin, a hint of colour and just enough coverage to hide any unwelcome imperfections (plus it's quick and easy to slap on with your fingers!). A couple of lashings of Bobbi Brown's Long-Wear Intensifying mascara, a run of 3 Custom Color's Light Clarifying Pencil on the waterline, a quick slick of the Apricot Shimmer Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector and spritz of fragrance from my Flo travel atomiser and I was good to go. All of this tucked into a Muji Airport Pouch fitting neatly into my hand luggage, which also usually houses a packet of tissues, a mirror, a bottle of water and not forgetting a good old mag too!

Most normal people would think about what book they're going to read to pass the time or which movies need to be pre-loaded onto their iPad, but I get quite excited about switching up my in-flight pamper each time. I guess that's a confession of a true beauty addict...

What are your in-flight beauty essentials?
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