Monday 30 November 2015

Two Limited Edition palettes/possible gift ideas!

NARS The Balm limited edition palettes 2015

Hi everyone, I have two recent additions to my makeup collection to share with you today that came about as a result of me treating myself after landing a new job and a birthday present from my mum!

NARS One Shocking Moment palette close up

The first one I got was the NARS One Shocking Moment palette and not having a huge amount of their face products apart from an older palette I bought in a blog sale, I thought I would treat myself to this one which is exclusive to Space NK in the UK!

NARS One Shocking Moment  palette swatches
l-r Paloma, Laguna, Robotic, Blasphemy, Luster, Dolce Vita
I was expecting this to be dearer but at £45 I decided to take the plunge and try it out and I’m so glad I did. I haven’t used Laguna much as I don’t bronze my face for the daytime but I love the Paloma contour duo (and the fact it has a matte highlight!) and it actually reminds me a little of the SEVENTEEN contour kit with the SEVENTEEN coming off a tad warmer when I swatched them, anyone else? The blushers are gorgeous, from left to right we have Robotic, Blasphemy, Luster and Dolce Vita which are all good sized pans and have lovely pigmentation. As I don’t have any single pan NARS blushers I can’t tell if there are any differences in pigmentation but I know sometimes people mention that the quality isn’t the same.

The Balm In the Balm of your Hand palette close up

Next up we have the Balm’s In the Balm of Your Hand palette featuring some of their most loved cheek eye and lip products! I’m a huge fan of the Balm, especially their blushers Frat Boy and Down Boy so when I started to see pictures of this palette floating about I knew it would be top of my wish list!

In the Balm of your Hand blush swatches
l-r Hot Mama, Instain in Argyle, Cabana Boy, Bahama Mama
The only duplicate I have in the palette is the Bahama Mama bronzer which I really like and also use for contouring! I’m loving Hot Mama and the Instain blush especially but need to find a softer brush to use with Cabana Boy as it’s so pigmented I put a little too much on and had to spend a little extra time blending it out! 

In the Balm of your Hand lip swatches
l-r Mia Moore, Caramel
I was more impressed than I expected to be with the lip products, I thought they would be sticky and hard to apply smoothly and it was only when I put How About them Apples in Caramel on my lips with my finger that I was won over by the gorgeous colour, easy application, no stickiness and comfortable feel! I haven’t tried it on my cheeks yet and probably won’t bother as I’m not a huge fan of cream blushers!

In the Balm of your Hand eyeshadow swatches
l-r Insane Jane, Mischevious Marissa, Sexy, Lead Zeppelin, Mary Lou Manizer
I’m enjoying using the much hyped Mary Lou Manizer (I don’t highlight often so a full size would be wasted on me) and with a light hand it’s easy to add a subtle sheen to my face.  The eyeshadows Sexy and Lead Zeppelin are unlike anything I have in my collection at the minute and although not normally shades I would go for on a day to day basis, the pigmentation is amazing and I can’t wait to wear them over Christmas! Mischievous Marissa is a lovely warm toned shimmer shade and Insane Jane is another shade that is more in my comfort zone.

I got my palette from Cloud10 beauty a few weeks ago (then gave it to my mum to wrap up for my birthday!). It was my first time ordering from the site but they had a 15% off offer on, great samples and the delivery was super quick! I've also seen it on for a lot cheaper but it’s out of stock at the minute and Debenhams have it too!

Overall, I’m super happy with both palettes and will get loads of wear out of them! They are definitely great for beauty lovers or for people wanting to try a few different things from a brand! Have you tried either of these palettes or anything from NARS or The Balm?

P.S. Sorry about the horrific state of my tan in these photos! I took these pictures just before I scrubbed it off!

Danielle xx

Thursday 26 November 2015

Limited Edition Nivea Creme 75ml Tins

Nivea Creme 75ml limited edition tins

If you have read my blog before you might have seen a few different products from Nivea crop up as I particularly love their skincare and body care ranges! Therefore I was super excited when I got sent two of their new limited edition Nivea Creme 75ml collectable tins* to celebrate the launch of the brand new, permanent 75ml tins available in the UK from January 2016!

Nivea Creme has been protecting and caring for skin for over a century now and in order to mark the new 75ml tin size they have launched four limited edition collectable tins featuring the cutest illustrations by Joelle Tourlainias. The core values of Nivea Creme include simplicity, care, courage, trust and family. On the inside of the tin is a link to an online fairy tale written by Udo Weigelt and the site also includes games for the whole family to play. I know I will be showing my little cousins these coming up to Chirstmas, they will love them!

Nivea Creme 75ml limited edition tins

The blue and white packaging is instantly recognisable to me, as is the scent which I love; it’s so fresh and clean! The cream itself is a lot thicker than the Nivea creams I’ve tried in the past  and at first feels a little like Sudocrem but it seems to change consistency once you start rubbing it in and it spreads very evenly! As it doesn't dry as quickly as some other creams, I've been using this mainly at night time on the back of my arms on patches of keratosis pilaris and on patches of itchy dry skin on my legs. I’ve been really surprised at how well it’s worked to smooth and stop my scratching as I find it very hard to get moisturisers that do both! 

With an RRP of £1.99 these are well worth picking up for yourself as a winter skin pick me up or as a stocking filler for a friend or family member – it suits all ages and is available at Boots and other leading retailers!

Have you tried Nivea Creme before?

*denotes a PR sample that was sent to me. All opinions are my own.

Danielle xx


Monday 23 November 2015

Duty Free Haul ft. Smashbox Full Exposure palette and Benefit Lip Lovin’ Tinted Lip Balms

duty free haul smashbox full exposure benefit lip lovin lip balm
Hi everyone, I have a little duty free haul I picked up last week when I was on the way to Spain for a few days for my birthday!

duty free haul smashbox full exposure benefit lip balm benebalm chachabalm posibalm

First off is the Smashbox Full Exposure palette which includes fourteen eyeshadow shades and a double ended brush. Now I remember when this first launched and I saw all the reviews, I though it looked amazing but then heard the formula of the top row of glitter/shimmer eyeshadows wasn’t great so I didn’t want to part with nearly £40.

Fast forward to last week, I was sat on the plane reading the magazine with all their offers in and saw the palette advertised for £29.50. Now this was still a little too dear for me so I put it to the back of my mind until about halfway through the flight when they announced they were having 20% off all cosmetics! That was the little push I needed to decide it would be mine! I also got the Smashbox #Shapematters palette back when it was star gift in Boots and have been loving it so knew the quality would be great!

Smashbox full exposure palette

I do have to agree with other reviews I’ve read of the glitter/shimmer row in the Full Exposure palette, I used the second shade from the left on the top row one night on holidays and the pigmentation wasn’t great and the fallout was awful with it. The shades toward the middle and right hand side of the top row seem to be a little better though!  

Smashbox full exposure palette top row swatches

Smashbox full exposure palette bottom row matte swatches

The mattes on the other hand are what I mainly bought this palette for and they have a lovely formulation with the shades being right up my street! I particularly love the three shades on the bottom right hand side for an all over wash of colour, deepening my crease and as a liner!

I had also heard really good reviews on the brush included with this palette but I still need to give it more of a test, I love the Cruella De Vil-esqe half while half black brush head but both sides are a little more rigid than I usually use so it will take me a little more time to get to grips with it!

As well as the palette, I picked up the set of three Benefit Lip Lovin’ lip balms while I was on the plane because I have the full size Benebalm and Posiebalm and love them but hate taking them out of the house in case I lose them (it’s happened one to many times with other products in the past) so this way I won’t be too heartbroken if they do get lost! They also give a gorgeous tint to the lips and last a fair amount of time too! I think these were down to about £12.50 then had a further 20% off!

Benefit lip lovin lip balm set swatches
L-R: Benebalm, Posiebalm, Chachabalm
All in all I’m so happy with my purchases! Did I need them – no! I’m still glad I have them though but I think I will need a serious spending ban soon (after Christmas – too many cute Limited Edition sets and offers to attempt to stop spending before!)

What do you think of what I picked up? Have you tried anything or got any good bargains on board a flight?

P.S. I finally upgraded my blog template last night! Still need to add a few bits in but I'm really happy with it and installation was unbelievably easy!

Danielle xx


Monday 16 November 2015

Forever Repurchased #1 Highstreet/Drugstore Edition

drugstore highstreet repurchases soap and glory nivea garnier vo5 no7 revlon

I do empties posts often enough now I thought I would put together a post featuring some old favourites of mine that are repurchased again and again and I can’t see myself switching up anytime soon!

drugstore highstreet repurchases soap and glory nivea garnier vo5 no7 revlon

First off we have my favourite makeup removal team, I always do a double cleanse at night and to begin with I will take a few cotton pads and use my Nivea Lotion for normal skin to dot on my face and gently remove my makeup. The Soft & Pure Cotton wool cosmetic pads are so absorbent and the Nivea is really creamy and works well to remove the bulk of my makeup before I go for my second cleanse (where I usually use a balm or oil cleanser).

soft & pure cotton wool cosmetic pads

To remove my eye makeup which daily includes eyeshadow and a lot of waterproof mascara, I use an oil based eye makeup remover, my favourite being the Garnier Express 2 in 1 Eye Make Up Remover. This is so gentle, it doesn’t sting my eyes and most importantly, it’s very effective at removing my eye makeup without me having to rub or drag my eyes.

Next up we have a few makeup repurchases including my favourite daily foundation. If you like affordable high coverage with a good range of shades for those with paler skin then Revlon ColourStay foundation is your guy! It was included in my empties post last week and I mentioned then that I started panicking recently when I could find my shade in any Boots stores for weeks and thought they had discontinued it! I finally found it and bought two which should keep me going for a few months! I used to favour applying this with my fingers as it tends to set quite quickly so I like to use the warmth from my fingers to help spread it evenly but recently I have really been enjoying using a Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge to apply it! My sponge is on its last legs though so I am thinking of upgrading to a Beauty Blender soon!

drugstore highstreet repurchsases makeup revlon colourstay soap and glory kick ass no7 powder

I took advantage of the 3 for 2 offer on make up in Boots recently to restock my favourite concealer, Soap and Glory Kick Ass Concealer in Light, as I've hit pan and I use it daily so it won’t be long before it runs out! I have a full post on this concealer and why I love it so much already here but in short, it's creamy, has a peach tone to correct under eye circles and a yellow tone for discolouration as well as a mini powder to set and is the perfect size for handbags. I love it!

I also repurchased my favourite pressed powder – No7 Perfect Light Pressed Powder in Translucent and used a £3 off No7 voucher while doing so (gotta love Boots offers). This is amazing at stopping shine on my oily t zone and I never hear it getting raved about! With other powders I have to top up at lunchtime and sometimes feel my makeup can look a little cakey afterwards but with this I just apply in the morning and that’s me to the evening! It’s amazing!

drugstore highstreet repurchases vo5 refresh me quick dry shampoo

Last but not least, another product I feared had been discontinued, my beloved VO5 Refresh Me Quick Dry Shampoo! The scent of this is so fresh and clean and even better, it leaves no white cast! I’m so happy to see this back in stock, I usually buy mine in Savers as it’s a little cheaper and I hope it sticks around this time! One of my favourite shampoos was recently discontinued and I can’t take anymore disappointment!

So those are my forever repurchased products that I can't see myself replacing with other products any time soon! Have you tried anything I’ve mentioned? What products do you constantly repurchase?

Danielle xx


Monday 9 November 2015

Product Empties #5

product empties skincare haircare bodycre makeup soap and glory nivea la roche posay antipodes revlon dkny batiste

Hi guys, another bumper edition of my empties today and as usual it’s heavy on Soap and Glory so let’s get straight into it!

haircare empties batiste dry shampoo review

Batiste Dry Shampoo 200ml
This isn’t my favourite dry shampoo ever but for the price I can’t complain too much! It has a nice smell and is good value for money as it’s always on offer (I buy mine in Savers). The only gripe I do have with it is the white cast it can leave on my hair so I have to make sure I really rub it in well but it might work better for blondes! Will repurchase in the future but for now my beloved VO5 dry shampoo is finally back in stock and I’m using that!

bodycre empties soap and glory nivea

Nivea Waterlily & Oil Shower Gel 250ml
I loved the smell of this and would definitely repurchase!

Soap and Glory Pulp Friction Body Scrub 250ml
By far the best scrub I have ever used, foams up unlike any other scrubs I've used in the past and makes it so easy to scrub off tan! I love using this with exfoliating gloves to get rid of any worn off patches and it is a constant repurchase!

Soap and Glory Heel Genius Foot Cream 125ml
This is a lovely thick green cream that I apply (when I remember) liberally to my feet at night then put bed socks on to let it soak in. It has taken me absolutely ages to finish this and while it’s a great moisturiser I do find myself getting a little bored of it. Already using a backup and I probably have about 3 or 4 other backups of that too!

Soap and Glory Hand Dream Super Cream Hand Cream 100ml
I think I’d go as far as to say I prefer this to the original Hand Food hand cream S&G do! It’s a lovely moisturiser that is really lightweight and soaks in quickly and I’m only realising now that it contains AHA’s which although make your skin more sensitive to sunlight are great for evening out skin tone among other things! Will definitely be repurchasing!

Nivea Soft Moisturising Cream 75ml
As you will have seen from this post, I use this mainly for rubbing on the back of my arms to help get rid of keratosis pilaris otherwise known as those annoying bumps people sometimes get on the back of their arms! It does a great job of moisturising them and helping them become less noticeable and I love the fresh clean scent it has! Constant repurchase!

skincare empties nivea la roche posay antipodes emma hardie balance me

Nivea Daily Essentials Refreshing Toner for Normal & Combination Skin 200ml
I have went through so many of these but to be honest I think this will be the last for a while as I was starting to find it a little drying on me. It’s good if you are on a budget but I think for me I was switching between using this and Pixi Glow Tonic and could tell the difference a little too much! Won’t be repurchasing!

La Roche-Posay Serozinc 150ml
I got sucked into the hype with this one and ordered a bottle straight away when it came to Escentual! I don’t know how it works but it definitely did good things for my acne prone skin and felt really refreshing to use as well as seemingly calming my skin down! I have a few Caudalie sprays to get through then I will definitely be repurchasing!

Emma Hardie Amazing Face Age Support Cream 15ml
I got this in a set along with the cleansing balm that was featured in a previous empties. It was a lovely cream to use but I didn’t notice a massive difference compared to any other creams I use so I wouldn’t repurchase, the cleansing balm on the other hand was swiftly repurchased!

Balance Me Natural Protection Moisturiser SPF 25 10ml
I got this in a try me set a good few months back now and was shocked when I saw the tiny size of the samples as the kit wasn’t cheap. This however lasted a good amount of time with daily use for me. There is a real sunscreen feel to this, it’s a white sticky cream that feels a little tacky to the touch and I just didn’t like the feel of it on my face so I wouldn’t repurchase.

Antipodes Divine Face Oil with Avocado Oil and Rosehip 10ml
Again another sample size I bought in a try me set that lasted ages (this one was reasonably priced though)! It’s a lovely thick oil that I looked forward to applying and sank in quickly giving me a nice extra boost of hydration! I probably will repurchase this or something else from Antipodes in the future as I like the fact it’s organic but at the minute I have a few other oils I’m nowhere near finished so it might be a while!

The Body Shop Aloe Lip Care 15ml
I loved this! I think originally it was a last minute purchase to get me to the threshold spend in one of the Body Shops 40% off offers but I’m so glad I threw it in my online basket! This kept my lips so hydrated all through the night! I hate waking up with dry lips and having to fumble in the dark for lip stuff so this stuff was amazing and on a par with my usual choice of Carmex (controversial but I really don’t like Nuxe Reve de Miel which seems to be a lot of peoples favourite!) Will definitely be repurchasing this!

makeup empties review revlon colourstay soap and glory max factor carmex

Max Factor Face Finity All Day Primer SPF 20 30ml
This bottle lasted me ages! It’s a thin white cream with a pump that dried in quickly and it did an OK job of priming my face. I wasn’t completely blown away by it though and it wasn’t memorable enough for me to repurchase!

Revlon ColorStay Foundation for Combination/Oily Skin in Buff 30ml
This is a constant repurchase for me and featured in my very first empties post here. It’s one of my favourite foundations and I actually couldn’t find my shade in it for a while so was rationing this bottle until it turned up which thankfully it did! No other drugstore foundation compares to the finish and shade match I get with this one and if you like full coverage and haven’t tried this yet what are you waiting for! Already repurchased two backups and using one of them!

Carmex Moisture Plus Ultra Hydrating Lip Balm Pink Sheer SPF 15
This was at the bottom of my gym bag as I sometime reapply if I’m there for longer than one class (not too often ha). I have gone through countless of these as I love the sheer tint they give to the lips and moisturisation they offer. I have a few other lip balms I need to get through then I will definitely be repurchasing!

Soap and Glory Archery Brown Tint and Precision Shaping Pencil
This featured in my Soap and Glory brow product breakdown and I love it! It has a felt tip on one side and pencil on the other and gives a really natural groomed effect! If you read that post you will have seen a small look at my brow products and know I don’t need to buy anymore so even though I want to I won’t be repurchasing (for a while anyway!) If you’d like to see the rest of my brow products not including the Soap and Glory ones I've already shown let me know!

fragrance empties soap and glory original pink mist you madly dkny

Soap and Glory Mist You Madly Body Spray 250ml
Probably one of my favourite scents in the world. I love this stuff, get to Boots and smell it for yourself! It lasts all day on my skin and I never get sick of it! Already repurchased!

DKNY Be Delicious Body Lotion 150ml
I love layering this up with the perfume to match. This lasts all day on my skin too and it’s not overpowering which I love! I already have a backup and will probably pop one of the Christmas gift sets on my Christmas list too!

Soap and Glory Original Pink Eau de Parfum 50ml
I love this one too, it smells so fresh and clean and I love the fancy little bottle it comes in! Its on my Christmas list!

So those are my latest empties! Have you tried anything I’ve mentioned? What did you think?

Danielle xx


Monday 2 November 2015

A Morphe Haul

Morphe Brushes Beauty Bay review 35N colour matte palette
I don’t know about you but I was so excited to see Morphe Brushes come to one of my favourite sites BeautyBay! I've seen them crop up in a few different YouTube tutorials and they seem to be so pigmented and good quality that when I saw the prices I knew I would have to try them for myself!

Morphe Brushes BeautyBay review 35N colour matte palette swatches

Generally speaking, I’m a fan of matte neutral shades so the Morphe Brushes 35N 35 Colour Matte Palette (£15.95) is right up my alley! The size of the palette does remind me of those giant ones you would ask for at Christmas and practically have to dig into to get any colour payoff but thankfully this isn't anything like that! The shadows are so pigmented and don’t kick up too much dust when you put your brush in them! I haven’t noticed any creasing with these either and they stay as vibrant from when I put them on in the morning to when I take them off at night! The packaging is sturdy but there is no mirror which doesn’t bother me as I never use the mirrors in palettes anyway! The only negative I would say is that there are obviously a lot of shades I won’t use in there but at £15.95 for the entire palette it doesn’t worry me too much!
Morphe Brushes BeautyBay review 35N colour matte palette 1st row swatches
First column

Morphe Brushes BeautyBay review 35N colour matte palette 2nd row swatches
Second column

Morphe Brushes BeautyBay review 35N colour matte palette 3rd row swatches
Third column

Morphe Brushes BeautyBay review 35N colour matte palette 4th row swatches
Fourth column

Morphe Brushes BeautyBay review 35N colour matte palette 5th row swatches
Fifth column
The first column as you will see from the pictures of the palette and the swatches are very light mattes that could be used as a base colour or matte highlight. The palette then moves into a few warmer shades with oranges and pinks which won’t get a lot of use from me but I can imagine people who are a bit more daring with their makeup using these! The palette then moves into the darker colours and a few purple shades which I can’t wait to use in a smoky eye! I have mainly been using this in the daytime with the browns in the last two columns along with the black shade in the very top corner as a shadow liner! Pigmentation varies a little through the palette with the most noticeable shades for me being the grey/black beneath the corner black and the grey at the top of the third column, I can’t get very much payoff from those at all but the rest have a really lovely smooth feel to them!

Morphe Brushes BeautyBay review M330 blending crease B8 badger goat deluxe fan brush

I also picked up a couple of brushes to try out. As you can never have too many blending brushes I got the M330 Blending Crease Brush (£4.75). The bristles are slightly longer than I’m used to which makes it a little bendier than my other blending brushes but nonetheless it’s soft and I like it! Probably the one brush I’m missing in my collection is a fan brush so I also ordered the B8 Badger Deluxe Fan Brush (£4.75). Again this is really soft and I’m enjoying applying highlighter with it as an extra step in my routine! I couldn’t find anywhere that stated Morphe Brushes were cruelty free so I sent them an email asking and they replied with “we work with many different factors that purchase their bristle from suppliers that are certified cruelty free”. 

My order was dispatched really quickly and arrived a few days later packaged really well! Beauty Bay also have free delivery on orders over £15!

I definitely want to try a few more things from Morphe especially more of their brushes and some other palettes like the blush one! Do you have any recommendations? Have you bought anything from a brand you haven’t tried before recently?

Danielle xx

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