How I Manage My Combination Skin

My skin is super weird. I mean, I’m quite lucky to have relatively few problems compared to some, but my face seems to take it to the extremes when it comes to having combination skin. Some days, I’m so dry and flaky I practically have scales, other days I’m more oily than a 3am kebab, and sometimes I flit between one and the other in a matter of hours, its fab.

That said, however, the more I’ve learned over the years about my skin and what works and doesn’t work, and the more products I’ve tried and tested, the more I’ve been able to manage the different phases I go through, which is great. It does, however, mean having pretty much two of every product, but I’ve got those nailed now.

Dry skin days

Most days tend to start as dry skin days, and so my mornings start with Nip+Fab’s Glycolic Cleansing Fix, which was an impulse purchase at the time but now I cannot imagine my life without it. For starters, it smells amazing, which is odd because they never mention the scent on the packaging but its SO GOOD, but even if it smelt like nothing at all, the product still speaks for itself. The formula seems a little strange, but you get used to it – its quite runny but also gel like, and it also foams up with a bit of a scrub, so I either squeeze a little bit onto wet hands and rub it onto my face, or I take it into the shower with my Magnitone, squeeze it onto the brush head and go to town. It leaves my skin feeling so refreshed but also smooth and moisturised and ready for the day.

My toner of choice most of the time is the wonderful Pixi Glow Tonic, and when my skin is dry this is no exception. I was a bit late to the Glow Tonic party, and worried when I finally got to try it that it would turn out to be over-hyped, but it does wonders for my skin and I noticed a change almost instantly after starting to use it regularly.

Of course it goes without saying that when my skin is dry, I need a good moisturiser and I’ve yet to find anything that works so well for my skin as Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturiser. I love that even the tiniest little dollop goes such a long way, which is handy because this stuff doesn’t come cheap, so the longer I can make a bottle last, the better, but despite the price tag I can’t flaw the product at all – it smells nice, it makes my skin super soft without being at all greasy and it absorbs quickly.

Oily moments

What’s weird about having oily skin now is that I didn’t really have oily skin that much as a teenager, but you know what they say about karma.. When my face is feeling oily, all I feel like doing is washing it, and even though I’m not a teenager, this is where I use Nip+Fab’s Teen Skin Poreblaster Wash, which is designed for exactly this situation. It comes in both a day and night version, I have both but tend to use the day one the more just down to preference. Sadly it doesn’t smell as glorious as the Glycolic Cleansing Fix, but its certainly not awful and it foams up well and leaves my skin feeling lovely and fresh.

My other cleanser for oily days is Lush’s Angels on Bare Skin, which is a solid sorta paste that I grab a chunk of, mix it up in my hand with some warm water to an easier to use consistency and rub it straight onto dry skin. Because its got some exfoliant ingredients it does a great job of picking up and washing away and dirt and grease, plus it smells great.

When it comes to a toner, I also go to Lush and my favourite toner from their collection, which is Breath of Fresh Air. Because it contains sea salt, it dries up oil with a simple spritz and wipe, and its got a calming fragrance to it which is part of the reason I love using it before bed because it puts me in a good mood for sleep!

It might be a pain going between two different skincare routines, but when the products are so great, its not so bad..

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A Little Lush Easter Haul

I feel like its been a while since I’ve done a Lush haul post, because believe it or not, despite buying a good number of products from the Christmas collection, I never actually blogged about them, even though I think it was the best Lush Christmas to date! But enough about Christmas (psst! 287 days..).

I don’t know if I’ve ever actually bought anything from a Lush Easter collection before – I normally grab a few Valentines Day bits, but seem to miss Easter entirely, so when I went into the Trafford Centre store over the weekend and saw the multicoloured goodness of this year’s offerings, I knew I had to get a couple of things to try, and having had a good Etsy payout earlier in the week, I felt the spend was justified.

So I picked up four things for myself on this occasion, but I think they’re all so stinkin’ cute and I cannot wait to try them out!

My first buy felt like a bit of a two for one deal, and this adorable little chick actually splits into two separate halfs. I noticed in store that they had these Free Rangers in a few different colours, and I don’t know if there’s actually any difference between them, but I liked this little orange chappy so he was the one who came home!

My next choice was the Cream Egg bubbleroon because just LOOK AT IT!! Its like Lush went inside my head and picked out the best colour scheme and turned it into a cute little sandwich of a bubble bar and it smells AMAZING. I imagine I’ll stock up on a few of these before the collection leaves stores because its so pretty and I think I’ll be sad to use this up!

Which Came First? This bathbomb is actually pretty huge, and a dreamy pastel design.

This final buy was a total impulse purchase – I’d gone to pick up my usual shampoo bar (Seanik), but as soon as I saw this little fluffy tail and ears on a yellow shampoo bar all sensible-ness went out the window and whether or not this bar turns out to be any good for my hair or not I don’t really care – its so cute!

I can’t wait to give all these goodies a try in the coming weeks! Have you used any of these before?

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A Lazy Girl’s Guide to Skincare

Skincare is a bit like Marmite, you generally either love it or hate it, and can do both simultaneously. Its also kinda like eating your 5 a day, in that you know you should be doing it but sometimes you just really can’t be bothered. You feel me?

I am both a lover and hater of skincare. Some days I enjoy nothing more than taking the time to properly remove my makeup, then cleanse, tone, moisturise and get my face feeling like a babies bum, and there are other days when I just crawl into bed with a makeup wipe and scrub off whatever I can before going to sleep. Some weeks I’ll be the good person every day, sometimes I can go days on just makeup wipes and trying to get the rest of the dried up mascara off my eyelashes in the shower the next morning. Its not always a pretty sight.

I have, however, picked up a few hacks along the way, so that even when I’m short on time – or short on bother – I don’t have to live with the consequences of a face that makes me want to peel my own skin off. Enter my lazy skincare guide..

Wash your face mask off in the shower

With the exception of sheet masks, obviously, I find there’s nothing more annoying than having to wash off a face mask after its done its business. I tend to use clay masks and Lush’s fresh face masks, which are generally super thick and I can spend ages with my face over a sink winding myself back up having just unwound courtesy of said mask. So I’ve started using face masks before showering, so that I can just hop into the shower when I’m finished and wash it all off in one fell swoop! This is also handy if you’re in a rush, as well as if you’re just lazy like me.

In fact, do everything in the shower

If I’m in a hurry in the morning, especially if I’ve been to the gym and am dealing with the aftermath of a sweat-fest on my face, I grab my cleanser and my Magnitone and do my face in the shower as well as the rest of my body. Like with face masks, being under a constant supply of running water makes everything super easy to wash away and also means there’s no mess to clear up round the sink!

Put everything within arms reach of your bed

I have a little basket on my bedside table that’s complete with micellar water, cotton pads, toner, facial moisturiser and body moisturiser – as well as the dreaded face wipes – so even if I do get straight into bed after coming home from work, there’s no excuse for why I can’t at least have a little bit of a skincare routine.

Guzzle water

If nothing else, drinking lots of water is never going to be bad for your skin. When it comes to dry lips, I actually reach for my water bottle before I reach for my lip balm, which is saying something cos I do love my lip balm. Dry lips especially are a sign of dehydration, so I at least make sure I’ve had at least 250ml of water before going for the balm.

Bare all

I know that going barefaced isn’t everyone’s scene, but its really important to let your skin breath. I do at least 2 days a week without any makeup, normally the weekends but often when I’m at work too and I feel so much better for it, plus it saves me time in the morning and I don’t have anything to take off in the evening! However I do know that a lot of people can’t face leaving the house without any makeup on for a lot of different reasons, but if that’s the case then just trying to go a few hours every evening before bed is also a way of getting a bit more free-skin time!

Do you have any skincare hacks that you use to save a bit of time?

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Things I Didn’t Buy In Sephora

This post is a little belated, given that my Florida trip was back in November, and I almost wasn’t going to write it, but that was until I saw the lovely Roxie’s anti-haul post based on a similar concept, so I decided to bite the bullet and publish it.

Every time I go to America I think about the Sephora trip, whether its because I’ve already planned a million things I want to buy, or I’m dreading the credit card bill that will inevitably come following the trip, and the last trip was no different. On this trip, I hadn’t really thought too much about products I wanted to buy, but that’s because its Sephora – there will always be things that I want.

That said, however, there were quite a few products that I rushed towards, but that didn’t end up in my basket in the end for various reasons, and here’s a few of those..

Too Faced Peaches and Cream collection

When Too Faced announced that they were releasing a full range of products following on from the Sweet Peach eye palette, glow kit (which I own) and a handful of blushes and lip glosses that they had before, my heart skipped a beat. I adore the glow palette, I’m a sucker for anything peach scented and Too Faced packaging is always the cutest, so that was the first stop when I entered the store. That said, however, I was a little disappointed. The packaging of some of the items felt a bit cheap, and I didn’t anything smelt as good as the original products, so for what they would have cost me, I just felt like my money could have been spent better elsewhere..

Anastasia Beverly Hills Sugar Glow Kit

This was the first ABH glow kit that I actually wanted, but as it had been out of stock when I was there in February, I opted for the Nicole Guerriero kit instead, which I was actually really happy about at the time because I love that palette. But this was in stock again, so I picked it up, looked at it, tilted my head and put it back. The fact was, the shades were just very similar to the ones in the kit I already had. Sure, none were exactly the same and I loved them all, but I just figured that I already had a pretty great set that still has plenty of use left in it, so I decided to stick with it.

Fenty Beauty

Firstly I was a little taken aback by how tucked away in the store the Fenty collection was, but nonetheless I did have a quick glance. The problem for me, however, was that the range had only been out for about 2 months, and I hadn’t seen that many reviews on the products to know where to even start. Its probably something that I’ll go back to, but it just wasn’t on the cards this time.

The minis

I normally love choosing from the huge range of minis in Sephora, but the fact is I was already quite stocked up from two previous trips that year! I ummed and ahhed over one or two things, but eventually left with no tiny products at all.

I guess that by being good on this trip, it means I can be a little naughtier next time though, right?

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Supershock with Colourpop

When it comes to the Colourpop hype, I think the products I’ve seen raved about the most is their Supershock eyeshadows, cue me adding them to my recent order.. I also came across the Supershock highlighter collection while in Sephora, and I think I’m in beauty blogger’s paradise.

As with most of Colourpop’s range, the packaging is fairly simple, which I have absolutely no gripes with as it just highlights the beauty of the product itself. The shadows are pressed with a gorgeous scale-like pattern, which I really hoped would hold out a little bit through use but as you can see below, I had no such like.

Top to bottom: Going Rogue, Flipper, One by One, Itty Bitty

While you can buy the eyeshadows individually, I chose a set of four called Phase Me Out, which saved me $2. The shades are a mix of finishes, with Itty Bitty being a matte/satin finish, Flipper is metallic and Going Rogue and One by One are described as pearlized, which is just a tad less sparkly than metallic. All of the shades compliment each other perfectly, and I chose them because I thought they were all right up my street in terms of what I would wear every day.

The formula is really creamy and super blendable, and in terms of pigment, just look at the swatches! The creaminess also means that there’s practically no fall-out and the shadows stay in place really well, even on unprimed skin, however the one thing that I did find slightly annoying was that because the formula is so creamy, I had to apply a lot of pressure to the product to actually get a good amount on the brush. This was fine for blending, because I prefer to start light and build if needed, it just meant that when trying to cover a larger area I kept having to go back for more.

Left to right: Wisp, Spoon, Over the Moon

The Supershock highlighters are all sold individually on the Colourpop website, but I picked up this set of three in Sephora – although the set was the same price as buying three individually! The packaging matches the eyeshadows, and the formula is just as soft to touch!

Over the Moon looks white from a distance, but as you can see from the swatch, its packed with purple-ish sparkle, giving it a unique duo-chrome finish which is also frost-like, perfect for Christmas! Spoon – which I think is a stupid name for a highlighter if you ask me – has a golden finish, although also has flecks of silver in it, and Wisp is similar, but has more of a champagne/bronze tone.

Again, I found that with the product being very buttery, it takes a bit of pressure to get anything on the brush, but the product is so vibrant that you really donโ€™t need that much anyway!

The eyeshadows are $5 (ยฃ3.70ish) each or $18 for a set of 4, and the highlighters are $8 (ยฃ6), and yes if you order from the UK you’ll probably get stung with customs but I still think they’re so reasonably priced that its worth taking that hit – it’ll probably work out cheaper than some brands!

I’m well and truly on the Colourpop wagon, and I’m not at all ashamed!

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Colourpop Yes Please Palette

I cannot tell you how excited I am to finally have my hands on this palette. It was love at first sight.

Its yellow, it contains yellow, do I need to say any more? And yes, its probably one of the most hyped palettes of the last few months, and now I know why.

The majority of the shades are matte, although there are a few metallics in there too, and they all compliment each other so well – I swear you could put any two shades from this palette together and be onto a winner.

As per Colourpop standard, the formulas are soft and blend like a dream, and I cannot flaw the pigmentation of any of the shades. I love the fact that the browns aren’t too dark, but they are buildable if you do want to created a deeper shade, and that actually goes for all of the shades, although I think they all go on well with a single application.

What I love about this palette is that I would never normally buy a palette of these shades; I was drawn in by the packaging and one or two of the colours, but now I’ve actually had a chance to use it I love all of them. Its actually turned me into a warm-tone kinda gal and going into winter I am very excited for this.

Have you jumped on the Colourpop bandwagon yet?

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Colourpop x My Little Pony Palette

Have you ever seen a product and while not being able to come up with an exact reason as to why, just knew you needed it? Yep, that was me with this palette.

I don’t even remember being that into My Little Pony as a kid (this is the point where, when my mother reads this post, she’ll text me to tell me if this isn’t true), but my infatuation with Colourpop has only just begun and you may be pleased to know that there are more swatch and review posts coming over the next few weeks, and I have been having the most fun playing with these products!

Obviously I don’t have to tell you how cute the packaging is, that goes without saying really. I’ve heard a few people complain about a lack of mirrors in the eyeshadow palettes but personally that’s not an issue for me – I’ve cracked so many mirrors by accidentally leaning or stepping on palettes before that I’ve probably earned enough bad luck to last a lifetime, plus I’m not one to do my eye makeup with such a little mirror anyway!

The palette consists of primarily metallic shadows, with a few soft mattes thrown in for good measure. They’re best applied using a soft brush as I found when I tried a stiffer brush the shadows went a bit crumbly, but also didn’t apply as evenly.

I was pleasantly surprised at the lighter shades in the palette and how well they stood out, as I often find pale shades either don’t show up at all or just disappear as soon as a darker shade is blended, but the four lightest shades – Butterscotch, Bluebell, Flutterbye and Snazzle – all really impressed me.

In fact, all of the shades impressed me with their pigmentation and staying ability, with my one let down actually being one of the darkest shades in the palette, the deep teal shade, Princess Sparkle, which looks great in the palette but for me just didn’t fit in with the rest of the shades, and also came out a little too grey for me, rather than the metallic turquoise I had hoped for.

But hey, 1 bad shade in 12 ain’t bad, right? And for $16 I’m not complaining one bit! I’m a big fan of the pinky/peachy shades, and I think I’ll be using those along with the more berry-toned shades a lot over the coming months!

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