Thursday, 18 September 2014

Jerome Russell | Bblonde Lightening Spray

As I mentioned in my previous post, I often use lightening sprays and tints on my hair. My hair has been in such good condition and has grown no end since I stopped bleaching it and piling on the hair dye and for the past 3 years or so, I've tried my best to embrace a slightly more natural look when it comes to my hair.  Luckily, I quite like the colour of my natural hair but sometimes, especially through the winter, it can look a little bit lack-lustre. To combat dullness, I often cheat a little bit with lightening sprays and similar products - it gives my hair a little boost without me having to commit to a hair dye or highlighting kit because the results are gradual. For the past few weeks, I've been using Jerome Russell's Bblonde Lightening Spray*.  I've used their hightlighting kits in the past and have always managed to achieve a good result.  I've also always found Jerome Russel to offer me the closest result to salon-applied highlights (provided you use it carefully and correctly) so I had high hopes for this spray. 

As you can see from the guide on the side of the box, this is more for subtle lightening and lifting the hair a couple of shades as opposed to full-on lightening from brown to blonde.  As my hair is mid-dark blonde naturally, I'm able to achieve the desired result quite easily and quickly.  It gradually lifts the hair colour in around 3 applications and provides a permanent lightening solution.  To use, I simply spray on the area I want to lighten after I've washed and towel dried my hair (in my case, I tend to use it at the roots) and then I'll use my hairdryer as usual.  Because the product is heat activated, I concentrate the hairdryer in this area for a while before moving on the drying the rest of my hair.  It contains thermal protector which is a handy little bonus, as it limits the amount of damage from any further heat styling.  I noticed a difference after 2-3 washes and I stopped using the product as soon as I achieved the desired lift after around 6 washes.  I like the fact that this spray seems to work quite quickly and it also seems to limit brassiness.  Whilst I still use a purple shampoo alongside it to combat any yellow tones (if you're lightening your hair this way it's quite difficult to cut it out completely), it does seem to lighten the hair without causing those nasty 'false' looking brassy hints.  

As with most lightening sprays, it can dry out your hair a little. I always like to apply a deep-conditioner whilst I'm using these sorts of products to try and combat the dryness and limit any damage.  I wouldn't say as if it feels as if I have product left in my hair, but I can tell when I've used this as my hair can feel a little bit gritty - if you're going to apply it through the ends of your hair, it's worth being aware of as it might make your hair less manageable for the time your using it.   Aside from this, the end result is a lovely, naturally sun-kissed look - it's not dramatic but that's exactly why I like it.  It lifts the tones I already have in my hair and just brightens it up a notch - which, through the winter months, is exactly what I want.  I would have posted my results, but seeing as I use products like this quite regularly, I don't think you'd get a true idea of how it works.  I often get questions about my hair and what colour I ask for at the hairdressers and the truth is, I don't! I just use a lightening spray whenever I feel as if my colour needs a lift.  If you're thinking of lightening your hair but are scared of it looking too 'bleached', then it's well worth looking in to a lightening spray.  Just make sure you stock up on the deep conditioner and grab a toning shampoo before you start!  You can find the Jerome Russell Bblonde Lightening Spray on the website here, and you can also find it in Boots.  It retails for £5.99*.

Have you ever tried a lightening spray? What did you think?

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Chill* Ed Blonde Shampoo & Conditioner | Beat the Brassiness!

I've been a blonde for the majority of my life (aside from the one time I dyed my hair black on a whim and spent the next few months helplessly trying to get it back to a form of decent blonde - a task and a half I'm sure some of you will be aware of and also one of my life's greatest mishaps).  Ever since said dye mishap, I try to stay away from colouring my hair and all I'll do is tint it or use a lightening spray on the roots now and again. Whilst this means that my hair is pretty low maintenance, it also means that pesky yellow tones often show through and make my hair look rather brassy.  I find that ever since I've gone 'natural', the darker blonde seems to hold on to brassiness much easier than it did when my hair was highlighted and bleached. This is why I'm never without a purple shampoo.  It's pretty much a key part of my hair-care routine and I always make sure I have some handy - especially at this time of year as my hair tends to get a little duller.  As well as knocking out brassy tones, I also think a purple shampoo can really brighten and lift your hair colour - it keeps it looking fresh and bright.  Enter the Chill* 'Ed Blonde' Shampoo and Conditioner duo...

Chill* Ed Blonde Shampoo | £9.99* | Link
Containing grape seed oil, proteins and violet pigments, this shampoo is said to knock out bassy tones whilst richly moisturising the hair, and is suitable for use on coloured or natural blonde. Firstly, I was really impressed with the colour of this shampoo. If you've never used a purple shampoo before it's pretty scary to say the least, but the pigment and shade of it is exactly what I look for and as scary as it seems, it successfully takes away the brassiness.  I've tried slightly lighter ones in the past and I've found I've had to use them a few times before noticing any difference, which is all well and good, but sometimes you just want a quick fix! And that's exactly what Chill Ed Blonde gives you.  I noticed a difference straight from the first wash - and it's something I tend to use every now and again whenever I think my hair needs it rather than every time I wash my hair.

It doesn't lather extremely well, (which is something I've noticed with other purple shampoos in the past - i think it's a purple shampoo thing?) so I did have to work the product in quite a bit before I felt like I'd given it a good clean, but it worked well nonetheless (just bare that in mind if you like a good bit of lather!) Also, the smell of the product is lovely.  In my opinion, it has one of those gorgeous 'salon' smells to it which lingers ever so slightly on the hair once you've washed and dried it.  I personally like this - I'm always a happy chappy when my hair smells and looks salon fresh!  As for knocking out yellow tones, it did so straight away from first wash - without leaving my hair with that 'lilac' tone.  If your hair is naturally blonde like mine and you've always thought purple shampoo is for bleached hair - think again! I always use purple shampoos despite my blonde being quite dark and it works a treat!

Chill* Ed Blonde Conditioner | £9.99* | Link
I must admit, despite my love of purple shampoos I've never invested in a matching conditioner.  If my hair ever gets brassy, it's usually in the top sections and I've never really thought I'd benefit from a matching conditioner. However, it is undoubtedly nice to have a set - especially when you like the scent of a shampoo and want to keep it going when it comes to your conditioner.  This one is quite creamy in consistency and I've found it to be really moisturising - which is great if your hair is feeling a bit parched! It 'rebalances moisture in your hair and closes the cuticle to leave it super soft and shiny'.  Again, it contains grape seed oil and violet pigments to continue the treatment through to the ends of your hair and gives that extra little 'kick' in knocking out brassy tones.  I actually really like this conditioner - it's well worth investing in to use as a second-step to the shampoo. It leaves my hair feeling soft, shiny and manageable.

Overall, a fabulous option if you're after a new purple duo to kick out the brassiness in your blonde! I used to struggle to find them but it's great to see different brands popping up offering different versions - this is definitely a great contender.  It's worth mentioning that the packaging is also really lovely - it's girly, easy to use and looks nice on your shower shelf (the metallic finish also pleases me...its so pretty!) You can find the Blonde range by Chill* on the website here along with other products for coloured hair.

Have you tried anything from the Chill* range?

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Bourjois Bronzing Products | Contouring Powders & Gold Shimmer Compact

Although summer is most certainly on it's way out, bronzing products are something I tend to use all year round.  I always find that a subtle glow through the winter months really brightens up my face and keeps my complexion looking healthy and fresh - provided I take it down a notch from my summer bronzing regime! I've been a fan of Bourjois' 'chocolate' bronzer for quite some time now. For me, it was always my go-to winter bronzer because it's a little lighter than some of my darker summer favourites.  That's why I was rather excited to see 2 new versions of the much loved 'chocolate' bronzer released this year. 

Bronzing Powder and Highlighting Duo | £7.99* | Link
I do love a good contouring product -  especially when it's something I can use when I'm on the go.  This duo is perfect for subtle contouring and sculpting - the highlighter provides a gorgeous flash of shimmer to the cheekbones, whilst the matte finish of the bronzing powder creates a nice, natural appearance.  I like it because it adds a touch of warmth to the face and works well as a subtle contour as well as an all over bronzing product. I like these powders because they're pigmented but not so much so that its difficult to blend - its so easy to use and it's definitely something I'd recommend for somebody new to contouring.  It's not something that's going to give you a strong 'chiselled' appearance but it's perfect for everyday use and for adding a quick bit of definition. It's something I'll be throwing in my handbag from time to time - it's lightweight and compact, and the '2 in 1' bronzer and highlight feature is just perfect for travelling with.

Gold Bronzing Powder | £7.99* | Link
I was a little unsure about this product at first - I usually hate bronzers with too much shimmer and this one is most certainly packed with the stuff! However, the name is a little misleading - this isn't really intended for sweeping all across your face but more as a 'second step' in your bronzing routine.  Instead of a normal highlight, the gold shimmer in this product emphasises your tan and adds a healthy, natural looking bronzed glow to your face and body.  I've quite taken to using this on my 'decolletage' (i always feel so posh and well-spoken when I use this word...) and also very lightly on my face. However - it doesn't really work as a highlight! I swept this across the tops of my cheekbones and instantly regretted it as it's quite dark! I use if more for adding a glow to the cheeks - in a similar way you'd apply a shimmery blush.  I've found it works much better when I've got a bit of a natural tan or a touch of false tan on beforehand - I've continued to use this now my skin seems to be getting paler and it definitely doesn't look as flattering without a bronzed base to begin with.  It's well worth popping a subtle fake tanner on the night before, bronzing your face as usual in the morning and then using this to emphasise the colour you've achieved as it can look a little false if not.  This is definitely one of those 'summer' products to pack in your suitcase however, if you fake tan now and again, its subtle enough to be used any time of year provided you don't go overboard with it!

Overall, 2 fabulous releases from Bourjois.  I really wish I'd had the shimmery powder earlier on in the summer as it would have been perfect for my holiday! Both products have that lovely 'chocolate' scent that the original bronzers have - I personally really like the subtle fragrance and chocolate inspired packaging and appearance. 

Have you tried any of these bronzing products? What will you be using now that autumn/winter is coming around the corner?

Thursday, 11 September 2014

My Really Simple Skincare Routine

I'll let you in on a little secret. I don't spend a lot of money on my skincare routine. I know - smite me down beauty gods! Slap me on the wrist for I must be a bad blogger! I've tried my fair share of high-end products when it comes to skincare and I have to say, I really don't see a huge difference in the results they give compared to my trusty 'drugstore' faves. I'm a big believer in that, when it comes to your skin, more expensive doesn't neccessarily equal better.  There's not a shred of skincare snobbery where I'm concerned. Ohhh no - get me down the aisles of Boots and I'm a happy chappy.  As well as my belief that the price tag doesn't always reflect the quality, I also think that keeping your skincare routine as simple as you can works wonders.  I think we've all fallen victim to over complicating our regimes now and again - being a beauty obsessive, it's easier said than done to cut-out some of the steps from your routine.  I think it's all too easy to get sucked in to buying luxurious products purely because they look good on your dressing table. Well, sods to that, I say!

Skin care is such a personal thing which made me wonder whether or not this post would go down like a lead balloon - however, if you're at your wits end with your skin, are suffering with breakouts you cannot get rid of or just can't find anything to work for you, hopefully this post might inspire you somehow. I've found a bunch of products which really do work a charm - and aside from one high-end product (which actually does do what it claims) none of these products are over £15.00 - in fact, the 2 'main' products I use are less than a fiver... 

Ok, so you might have seen the header photo for this post and thought 'how the flippin'eck is that a simple skincare regime?' - but the reality is, on a daily basis, I only use these 2 products.  Nothing else.  I wash my face both morning and night with my Simple Spotless Skin Triple Action Face Wash (£3.99) and moisturise afterwards with a pump or two of Superdrug's Tea Tree Facial Moisturiser (£2.99).  That's it. Nothing snazzy. Not a bit of fancy packaging or a luxurious name to be seen.  I like these two together because they do a fab job at keeping my skin clear from blemishes - the face wash has tiny little beads in it which help to exfoliate gently and the moisturiser is a lovely consistency for every day use (although dry skin types will probably find it much too light). The tea tree definitely helps to calm my skin and I've been using both of these for years now - I couldn't be without them.

The only other face wash I will use is Arran Aromatics Lavender Tea Tree Reviving Toning Facial Wash (£12.95). I've spoken about this many times on my blog and it even made it into my 2013 favourites here. I use this when I'm feeling a bit stressed as it's such a relaxing wash to use before bedtime - I find it has really great calming benefits if my skin is looking a little worse for wear or dull. It's so cooling and calming on the skin and the scent is just heavenly.  The consistency is also really lovely  - a gel-like texture with small exfoliating beads which leaves your skin feeling smooth, soft and pampered. I must be on my 5th bottle of the stuff now.  I love it.  

Another brand I'm rather partial to when it comes to skincare is Organic Surge.  I really like their Blissful Daily Moisturiser (£8.49) for the wintertime as it's just that little bit thicker than my Tea Tree one (bare in mind I have normal-dry skin and this is fine for me, but if you have particularly dry patches, you might want to try something a little heavier).  It's really creamy and intensely moisturising but it doesn't sit on top of the skin so it's great for applying in the mornings when you need to do your makeup pretty swiftly after moisturising.  I'm also a big fan of the Organic Surge First Class Face Mask (£8.49). I must admit I'm not one for face masks as I just find them a bit of a faff and my skin often reacts badly to them - but this one is really gentle and fuss-free. It doesn't harden and it doesn't leave an obvious film on the skin - in some ways, it's just like applying a thick moisturiser.  I will pop some on 10 minutes before a shower and then wash it off in there - it's so easy.  I do this if my skin is feeling dull or 'clogged' up as it gets rid of any impurities - it seems to help clear any blemishes and leaves my skin looking a little more bright and fresh.

If you suffer with blemishes and want a really good product to clear your skin, I really recommend having a bottle of this in your bathroom cabinet.  It's expensive - but my goodness, it works.  I will always recommend this to anybody suffering with breakouts as it completely cleared mine when I went through a little spell of them last year.  It was a life saver and I doubt I'll ever find anything as good.  At £25.00 a bottle, the Harley Street Skincare Spot Busting Solution isn't cheap - but its worth every penny and I'm now on my 4th bottle of the stuff. It's great if you have quite a few blemishes in a certain area or if you have one of those stubborn under the skin spots. I won't say too much as I've reviewed it a couple of times on my blog - you can find it in my 2013 favourites post here.

And last but not least, my Origins Super Spot Remover (£15.00) is another one of my favourites.  I must admit I think I prefer my Harley Street solution however, this one is great for travelling with (i take it on holiday as it weighs next to nothing) and it's good to pop on if you have a small blemish or two.  This teeny tiny bottle has lasted me ages and it's well worth the money.

 So there we have it - my super simple skin care regime. Aside from a couple of more indulgent products, there's nothing overly luxurious or high-end - just good quality, well priced products that work a treat.  I used to over-complicate my skincare regime and ever since I've stripped it back to the basics, i've noticed so many benefits.  

What's your opinion on skin care?

Monday, 8 September 2014

Makeup Revolution Buys | Mini Reviews & First Impressions

When I first heard of Makeup Revolution, I have to say I was rather intrigued.  I tried so hard to resist the temptation but the inevitable happened and I finally caved.  I think it has to be the eyeshadow palettes that are to blame for my shoddy willpower - there's so many to choose from and all of them look absolutely beautiful. I try not to buy too many palettes as there's only so many one girl can use, however, when I saw range I simply had to have a cheeky browse. Not only do the colours look so well put together and well presented, but all of the Makeup Revolution products are super affordable - perfect for a pre-payday treat or a little pick-me-up now and again.  I actually went into my local Superdrug store to have a good ol' swatch and a proper look at the collection instead of ordering online and I'm so glad I did. It was like a beauty blogger's dream sifting through all the palettes and I spent ages looking at all  of the singular eyeshadows too.  Here's what I ended up with (believe me I'm incredibly proud of myself for walking away with just 3 things - I could have easily just picked the entire stand up and took that to the till instead but I don't think the staff would have been too impressed...)

The 'Essential Mattes' Palette | £4.00 | Link
The first thing I went for is this gorgeous palette containing an array of neutral matte shades.  I'm loving my matte eyeshadows at the moment as I find them much more natural and easier to wear in the daytime.  I quite liked the look of some of the lighter shades - particularly the yellow/peach toned ones as I find they work well as a base.  I was also drawn to the lovely mid-brown shade and the two lilac-browns next to it.  The palette is of a really good size (when i saw them online i imagined it to be a similar size to the MUA ones) and you actually get quite a lot of eyeshadow in each pan despite them being quite thin.  Admittedly, they aren't quite as pigmented as I'd hoped and some of them are a little hit and miss, but it's a fabulous palette nonetheless and I've really been enjoying using it.  The darker colours seem much more pigmented and less chalky but the majority of the shadows seem quite soft and smooth - for £4.00, you can't really go wrong.  I've since found they apply a little easier with a primer.

Nail Polish in 'Adore' | £1.00 | Link
Never one to say no to a nail polish, me. Especially when it's just £1.00! For £1.00 I have to say the packaging for these polishes is really lovely.  It's of a really good size, feels weighty and looks the part.  'Adore' is a beautiful mid-purple shade - really wearable, girly, and enough of a statement without looking too 'full on'.  The pigmentation is really good - all you need is 2 coats to get a good, even finish.  The only thing that struck me is that the brush can be quite streaky so you have to concentrate when you're applying it to avoid too many brush marks, however, this is easily solved as soon as you apply a glossy topcoat.

Vivid Blush Lacquer | £3.00 | Link
So far, I think this has to be my favourite product from the bunch. In all honesty, I don't usually get along with strongly pigmented cream blushes like this, but I'm really quite fond of this one.  It's lovely and creamy, and it's easy to dispense a very small amount due to the styling of the pump (you really don't need much at all).  I usually prefer a powder blush but I've been favouring a creamy consistency recently as my cheeks have been a little dry.  It's moisturising enough to create a dewy, fresh finish but not so much so that you end up looking greasy - I also like that it doesn't go completely matte and powdery on the skin too - it's just a nice, 'in-between' sort of finish. You only need a small dot of the product to blend into the cheeks so this will last you absolutely ages.  I reckon I'll do a full review of this with swatches soon.

All in all, some fabulous buys from Makeup Revolution - they certainly won't be my last! I can't wait to pick up some of the singular eye shadows, bronzers and blush palettes soon and I'm quite intrigued by some of their lipstick shades too (typical Beth!) I must apologise for the lack of swatches - I'll probably write up some full reviews of these products soon so keep your eyes peeled for those! You can have a browse of the Makeup Revolution range on their website here and they can also be found on Superdrug and in selected stores.

Have you tried anything from Makeup Revolution? What's your favourite product?

Sunday, 7 September 2014

MUA Power Pout Lip Crayon in 'Rendezvous'

I'm definitely late to the party when it comes to lip crayons. I never really caught on to them until recently but, as they say, better late than never.  I jetted away on holiday earlier this year and I really wanted a subtle balm to pop on in the daytime - not only for a splash of colour to brighten up my makeup-less face but also to keep my lips hydrated through the day. I picked up a few magazines in the airport and one of the freebies happened to be a pink lip crayon - in all honesty I didn't think I would use it much but but it quickly became my go-to beach bag beauty staple and I was rather sad when I realised I'd lost it towards the end of the holiday.  So, when I got home, I set out to find a similar version on a budget.  Enter the MUA Power Pout Crayon - a cheap and cheerful addition to my daily makeup bag that's become quite the life-saver when it comes to effortless, everyday makeup.

As I'm currently on placement, I really don't want to look unprofessional at my desk slicking on the lippie every 5 minutes (as tempting as it is!) I've found this to be the perfect companion to keep in my handbag under my desk as it looks just like a lip balm but provides instant colour pay off too.  I don't need to use a mirror because the shade is fairly neutral and the shape means that it's easy to get an even finish without the need to spend time applying it - it's literally just a quick swipe and I'm done. The glossy, slightly sheer finish also adds to its effortless appeal and it's also quite moisturising to apply so it doubles up as a balm. Wear time is quite good for a lip crayon - the pigmentation is really impressive (there's no need to build it up in layers) and the glossy finish lasts for quite some time.  After about an hour, it fades but it leaves a lovely, subtle stain. 'Rendezvous' is a pretty, pinky-brown nude shade - very elegant, classy and girly. I've found that when it wears off to a stain it gets a little brighter, which is quite strange, but nice nonetheless as it still leaves some colour behind even after its worn off.  It's also great that you can twist the bottom of the crayon to get more product once you've worn it down a little - a lot of crayons I've seen actually don't contain a lot of product but this one seems to be quite good value for money.  The subtle minty smell is also a nice addition as it feels quite refreshing to apply.

Overall, a fabulous product from MUA. Although I haven't tried a lot of lip crayons, I've swatched my fair share in store and I've had a look at some of the higher-end brands in the past - I have to say, MUA have hit the nail on the head when it comes to pigmentation and finish and the packaging is just as good.  I really don't think you need to splash the cash on lip crayons when you can find gems like this for a fraction of the price.  You can find the MUA lip crayons in Superdrug stores and also online here and here - retailing at just £3.00. I'm really excited to pick up some of the darker shades for autumn/winter - there's a gorgeous berry red shade that's just perfect for the upcoming colder months.

Have you tried the MUA lip crayons? What's your favourite lip crayon? I'm looking to grab a few more!

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Monthly Favourites | August

Erm...where did summer go?! We aren't even a week in to September yet but I'm already swapping my corals and pastels for berry shades and autumnal tones... and dare I say it, but the heating has most certainly been switched on the past couple of days. I've definitely found a few new faveys recently, although to be honest, not much has changed since my June Favourites post (here). I'm still loving my Jane Iredale palette (I don't know how I ever lived without it), and I don't think a day has gone by that I haven't had a quick swish of Benefit's Hoola bronzer either. I'm still utterly obsessed with my Mac lip liner and my Tanya Burr 'Chic' lipgloss remains a full-time resident in my handbag. However, being a beauty obsessive, there's always room for more, right?! So without any more rambling, I'll introduce you to last month's favourites...

Loreal Infallible 2-Step Longwear Lipstick 24 Hour Colour in 'Pink Spice' 
Crikey - what a mouthful! I've been after a lip stain for a while now as I don't actually own a lot of long-wearing lip products. I'm currently on placement for a while and as much as I love my lippie, it's not exactly professional to top it up at my desk every hour.  This lip stain does the job perfectly and lasts all day - it fades very gradually and doesn't flake or chip off which is what I've found with other stain products I've used. The colour is right up my street - a chic, pink toned brown that reminds me a little bit of 'Clueless' (the film from the 90's - I bloomin' love the whole 90s trends right now!)  I tend to apply some of the clear balm first and then let that sink in whilst I do my makeup, and then I'll apply a bit of my Mac 'Spice' lip pencil (which is a perfect match!) before finishing with the stain. It's very easy to apply and goes on like a lip gloss.  The glossy finish does wear off after half an hour or so and it can be a little drying, however, it's so easy to carry around with you and I simply apply some more of the balm every so often to keep any dryness at bay.  I've used this when I've been out for drinks and when I've been on some serious shopping trips and each time it hasn't let me down. If you're after a long-wearing fuss free lip colour for work or nights out, I really recommend these.

Ofra | Eyeshadow in 'Bliss'*
I received this little beauty in lasts month's LoveMeBeauty box (post here) and I've fallen head over heels in love with it.Honestly, it has to be one of the best singular eye shadows I've used for a long time and I'm definitely going to check out the rest of the Ofra collection. It's so buttery soft and creamy, whilst being ultra blendable and smooth to apply.  It has just the right amount of shimmer and I've taken to using it as an inner-corner colour to brighten up my eyes or all over the lid for a quick wash of colour. It lasts amazingly well even without a primer and there's a little mirror concealed underneath the pan. I cannot explain my love for it! 

Stargazer Blush in 'Shade 8'
I won't say too much about this as I featured it already in last month's 'Summer Saviours' post (you can read that here) but It's still my favourite blush to use right now, despite the weather being slightly less lovely than it was last month! Although it looks absolutely terrifying in the pan, it's so easy to apply and is super blendable (providing you don't go too heavy handed!) and it's also one of those colours that instantly awakens your complexion.  I can imagine I will start to phase this out this month now that the weather is turning colder and my summer tan is long gone, but I'm going to milk it for all it's worth - I love orange tones and I shall get away with it for as long as I can...

Seventeen | Instant Glow Bronzer in 'Medium Bronze' | £4.49
Again, I won't say too much about this as I wrote a little review about it in my latest beauty haul here. It's honestly the best drugstore bronzer I think I've ever used and for the price, it's absolutely amazing. I'm so tempted to pick up the cream version too!  It's definitely best for overall bronzing as opposed to contouring as it's quite warm in tone (definitely not orange though), but the matte finish means it works well for subtle definition anyway.  It's such a lovely bronzer and I'm definitely going to repurchase as soon as I hit pan. Well done Seventeen *seal clap*

Lord & Berry Lipstick in 'Brick Lip'
I actually received this in one of my LoveMeBeauty boxes last year (post here) and hadn't really used it much - up until now.  I've only recently discovered my love for brown hues and spicy pinks/brick hues so I had a little root around in my lipstick drawer and found this little gem.  It's been a firm favourite of mine all month and I'm totally in love with it - from the shade, sleek packaging and the formula of the lipstick.  It's so pigmented and smooth to apply and lasts pretty amazingly too - I'd liken the formula to Mac's amplified formulas.  I have to say I really do like Lord & Berry - they have a lovely selection of products.

Origins Peace of Mind Sensory Therapy Balm
I have to admit, when my parents bought me some of this for Christmas I was rather sceptical. I've tried so many things for anxiety in the past and never expect miracles anymore but this has to be the best thing I've tried so far - hands down!  It's essentially a minty scented balm that you simply pump onto the skin (i tend to use it on my pulse points, particularly my wrists) and inhale when you're feeling a little wobbly.  I've been using it a lot recently as I've been travelling around for job interviews and meetings - it takes the edge of the nerves and seems to help keep panic attacks at bay.  It's quite discreet so it's easy to keep in your handbag and use when you're on the go.  If you're feeling a bit worried or anxious about anything, it's well worth picking some of this up. You only need the tiniest bit and the minty scent really does work wonders at kicking panic attacks up the bum! I don't know what it is - but it just works instantly!

Jimmy Choo Perfume
I love Jimmy Choo perfumes. I've recently made a repurchase of my favourite 'Flash London Club' (post here) which I was sent a while back.  When that one ran out, I turned back to the orignal scent and rediscovered my love for it.  It's such a glamorous, girly scent and I like it because it isn't too sweet or too spicy - it's perfect for day or night and it's so sophisticated.  I love the fact that it lasts so well too - I can literally spray it a couple of times before dashing out of a morning and it's still lingering when I get home.  If you're after a good, long wearing perfume, I really recommend having a look at the Jimmy Choo scents.  How gorgeous is the bottle too?! Definitely one to pop on your dressing table! It's a beauty!

Swatches L-R | Stargazer Blush | Seventeen Bronzer | Ofra Eyeshadows | Lord & Berry 'Brick' | Loreal 'Pink Spice |

What have you been loving this month? Do any of my favourites tickle your fancy!?

Monday, 1 September 2014

Brand Focus: Organic Surge | Shower Gels

Organic Surge is a brand I've been familiar with for a while now and I've featured a few of their products here on Bird's Words. Their cruelty free products are 100% free of harsh chemicals, parabens, artificial fragrances and colourants and are full of naturally derived, nourishing ingredients and fragrant essential oils.  My favourite product has to be their '2 Minute Moisture Hair Mask' and it's one that I've repurchased a couple of times since I first tried it. I'm also a big fan of their 'First Class Face Mask' and their facial moisturisers as well as their bath foams (I'm a bit of a bath product junkie!) I just think the whole brand hits the nail on the head when it comes to affordable skin/body care and the entire brand ethos is something I really feel drawn to. Sometimes, I feel as if natural products can be very hit and miss but Organic Surge really have impressed me and their products really do work.  I'm also really excited to see that they've introduced some Travel Sized products to their range - I'll definitely be stocking up on the minis the next time I jet away on holiday or find myself away from home for a while.

Today, I thought I'd focus on their range of shower gels.  I'm aware it's difficult to get excited over a shower gel but as shower gels go, these one's are a treat I tells ya! Each one contains 250ml and they last absolutely ages.  I find them to be really nourishing on the skin and the thick, gel consistency means that even the tiniest blob gets a good bit of lather going on (a very crucial factor for me!) I've tried 4 of their gels now and each one is deliciously scented whilst providing a range different benefits...I find it difficult to pick a favourite!

Fresh Ocean | £4.95* | Link
This is the newest addition to my little OS stash! Enriched with lime, rosemary and lemon oils this one is rather refreshing.  It isn't overly citrus-y which I really like -its just the right sort of balance for me and the 'ocean' hint definitely comes across. This one is said to be beneficial for dull or dry skin, whilst helping to soothe irritation with it's intense natural moisturisers.

Citrus Mint | £4.95* | Link
This is one for those early morning showers! Citrus Mint is really refreshing but with a certain 'kick' to it! I find it to be really awakening and I love using it when I need a bit of a perk up! It also contains healing aloe vera which is great for irritation and blemishes - I went through a stage where I had a few little blemishes on my back and I have to say this helped no end.  It helped to keep my skin looking clear and calmed and it really does seem to help keep my skin clear.  It's also a good one for summer time as it helps to cool the skin and leaves it feeling really refreshed.

Tropical Bergamot Shower Gel | £4.95* | Link
I know summer is coming to an end, but this one really has been a firm favourite for me over the past few weeks.  It reminds me of Solero ice lollies! Yummy! Sweet orange and bergamot oils help to cleanse the skin and the uplifting fragrance provides a lovely little mood boost.

Super Fresh Body Wash 'Awakening' | £5.99* | Link
A little pricier than the other shower gels, this one is said to target and stimulate the senses for a naturally 'uplifting' effect - containing a blend of spicy may chang and bergamot oils. I prefer to use this in the mornings, it has a similar effect to the Citrus Mint but is a little more warming and 'zingy'...

Overall, I really recommend these body washes.  They're a little pricier than your average but they hardly break the bank and the mix of essential, natural oils combined with their range of unique, beautiful scents make them well worth it.  Like i said earlier in this post, I've repurchased a couple of products from them now and this is the type of thing I'd add to my basket for an added treat now and again - it's worth mentioning that they often have offers on as well as providing different 'bundles' (I signed up to their email newsletter and often get little codes and heads up on offers). If you're after little 'stocking fillers' these make lovely little gifts - I'm not sure if it's just my graphic design background coming out in me, but I really like the whole brand appearance too. You can find the range of shower gels and bath goodies on their website here.

Have you tried Organic Surge? What's been your favourite product so far?

Thursday, 28 August 2014

The Perfect Daytime Pink | Revlon 'Pink in the Afternoon'

Oh what's this? Another lipstick on Bird's Words? Yes. It is indeed another lipstick on Bird's Words but it's a stunner to say the least. I've been trying to curb my lipstick buying habits (honestly), but I guess you could say I've failed on my little mission because I ended up giving in to temptation at the Revlon stand just recently.  I have to say, I do love Revlon lipsticks. Some of my most loved shades happen to be Revlon (Cherries in the Snow anybody?) and I just find them to be of really good quality and the packaging and finish is always spot on.  'Pink in the Afternoon' is a gorgeous mid-tone pink with a beautiful creamy finish. It contains an exclusive blend of moisturisers and vitamins and is really silky smooth and soft to apply to the lips, whilst providing a slightly glossy, natural finish.  It's the perfect pink for daytime wear and it's so effortless and chic.  I actually bought this shade because I spied it on a friend of mine and instantly knew I had to own it - it really is stunning and it looks lovely with a bit of a tan too as it isn't too pale. It reminds me of one of my high-end favourites, Mac 'Fanfare' (post on that here) as it has the same sort of undertone and finish - it's maybe slightly lighter but if you're after a lovely neutral pink, it's well worth looking in to these 2.  

Overall, another fabulous buy for me. This is a shade I will get a tonne of wear from and Revlon never fail to impress me with their lipstick selection. For £7.49, they're really worth the money and I recommend looking into their range if you're after a good quality, drugstore lipstick. You can find this shade on the Superdrug website here.

What's your favourite Revlon shade? Any others you can recommend?!