Do you need to put yourself on a skincare diet?

Usually in the new year, people turn their attention to their lifestyle – to start moving more and eating better. But what about a skincare diet? Maybe you’ve tried every product under the sun and yet your skin goals remain elusive. Or maybe your 10 step K beauty routine just isn’t delivering the same results anymore. Perhaps it’s time you went on a skincare diet.

There are so many different types of products, with an offering from each brand, that the merry-go-round of trying out new products never ends. But do you really need them all? Let’s be real, every single one of us has bought at least one product based on someone else’s recommendation that was a total flop. Can you hand on heart accredit a change in your skin to every single product in your day-to-day routine, or do some of them just fly under the radar – not really performing but a ‘nice addition’?

The glamour surrounding the multi-step Korean routine that exploded a few years ago is starting to dwindle. The pendulum has swung back towards simplicity- the anti-thesis to the over-complicated K beauty regime. Even the Koreans have moved away from an excessively long routine, so surely it can’t be long before the rest of the world follows suit.

The premise of the skincare diet is simple: by having these long routines, we can actually cause more damage than good. We can overuse active ingredients, use products that don’t agree with our skin and cause irritation, be that in the form of redness, sensitivity or breakouts. The solution? Strip your routine straight back, to just cleanser, moisturiser and SPF.

Krave Beauty recently started the #PressResetChallenge which is exactly what has been mentioned above – streamlining the process to just cleanser, moisturiser and SPF in order to better evaluate what your skin actually needs. The initial 15 days are to heal any irritation, regulate the skin and to take note of how it’s reacting to the minimal routine. After 15 days, you assess what your skin is craving (not what you want to add back, but what your skin actually needs in addition to the basics). This should allow us to have a much greater understanding of our skin, its needs, our goals and how we can reach them. This could also place greater emphasis and encourage greater education about key ingredients and the wonders they can work for our skin.ย 

Liah Yoo was always at the forefront of the skincare diet movement, so it’s great to see that she is using her brand’s platform to further educate her consumers and fans of the brand on the importance of stepping back from their shelfies and really focusing on what is needed. It encourages people to declutter their collections and donate products that are wasting away unusued to those that will enjoy them more.

Looking at the #PressReset/skincare diet movement in a greater context, it links in well with the no buy/low buy movement and goes against the tide of beauty releases. It encourages you to follow a simple routine and stick to it, rather than trying every product just because your friend told you it’s the best thing since sliced bread. Even skincare experts like Susan Yara (see Mixed Makeup on Youtube) have pledged to streamline their routine – even they can recognise the excess! Beauty in general this year is taking a step back towards simplicity and it can only be a good thing.

So, does this sound like something you need? Now this may not be a solution to your problems depending on what they are, but it may offer an insight into your current routine. By slimming your routine down and slowly adding things back in, it can help to identify triggers of any irritation you might have.

This is actually something I’ve been trying myself and I’ve seen a reduction in irritation and breakouts. I’ve been using a moisturiser that’s packed with ceramides to repair my skin barrier and it’s been working an absolute treat. I’ve been doing it the whole of January I might keep it going for a little longer!

Do you think you need a skincare diet?

Xo

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Will the popularity of the ‘No Buy’ alter the beauty landscape?

You’ve seen it everywhere – the no buy. People who have overdone it on beauty products in the last few months (or years) and vow to not spend a thing in an attempt to use up product and save money. It has varying degrees of success, but ultimately the cause is the same – we can’t keep up with constant releases and it’s hurting our pockets.

Where did the no buy come from?

The beauty landscape has changed. It’s not what it used to be. New products are launching left, right and centre with little sign of slowing. Once upon a time, consumers were able to save up for quarterly launches and pick up a lot more from brands as products would drop much less regularly. Rampant consumerism has us forever chasing the next big launch and forgetting about the enormous collection of makeup sitting at home.

In light of this, the ‘No Buy’ (or even low buy) movement has been gaining some serious traction. People can’t afford to keep up with the constant slew of releases that are being pumped out by beauty brands these days. Project Pan (where you try and finish selected products) and Shop My Stash (where you go back through your collection and use forgotten about products) are increasingly popular, with major beauty Youtubers supporting them too.

The current rate at which products are being released is undoubtedly the catalyst for this introspective look into our own collections – we know it’s impossible to keep up anymore. With a real focus being placed on wastage and products expiring, while it might be pretty to have a large collection, it doesn’t serve anyone if it’s all out of date and unusable.

So with consumers looking to save money and get more use out of their current collections, will this influence the beauty landscape in any capacity? In theory it should. If consumers are increasingly holding onto their money, in an ideal world, three things should happen:

Releases slow down, more innovative products introduced and quality improves.ย 

This craze can’t keep picking up momentum – things will have to slow down if people aren’t purchasing. People have beauty release fatigue – trust me, it’s a thing. Consumers have been very vocal about their dislike of constant launches, so if brands are astute, they will take note. The only way to keep people interested in products in an over-saturated market is to offer something new and exciting. Greater attention needs to be paid to innovation and what the community is actually interested in, rather than pumping out more of the same. There are only so many rainbow palettes that any one person needs. On top of that, consumers are increasingly comparing new releases to their existing collection, so another warm toned neutrals palette with a pop of blue won’t cut it. The age old saying of ‘quality not quantity’ rings particularly true here too. In a rush to bring products to market, brands are releasing TRASH. Non-eye safe glitters, poor formulas, sub-par shade ranges, the list goes on. In a market that is ridiculously overcrowded, quality is king. One bad formula in a hyped up launch can completely alienate a consumer from that brand (Ciatรฉ Jessica Rabbit collection, we’re looking at you). If you want to keep up, you can’t afford a slip like that. It’s very dangerous to become irrelevant in today’s beauty space.

‘Vote with your dollars’

The fact that the no buy has become so popular at a time when the beauty machine is going full speed ahead speaks volumes. People are starting to recognise that while they may have fallen into that trap at first, they don’t have to keep falling for it. Consumers can tell that brands are just trying to milk the cash cow and are actively choosing not to participate in it anymore. The term ‘voting with their dollars’ is often used in cases like this and that is exactly what the no buy movement is doing – by not spending any money at all.

2020 – the year of change?

The message is starting to come through – in the first few weeks of the new year, it seems as though the beauty machine has started to slow. Anastasia Beverly Hills announced that their latest collaboration with Amrezy will be their last palette launch until Christmas 2020 (though there will be two new palettes launching as part of the Norvina off brand). This seriously implies that release fatigue is being noticed by brands and that they are altering their strategy to stay relevant and popular, especially considering ABH launched 8 palettes in 6 weeks last year. Other brands like Colourpop aren’tย quite following suit, having launched 3 new collections in 3 weeks…

We can’t have it all. At the end of the day, as long as the no buy benefits the consumer – allowing them to use up their current collection, avoid purchasing similar if not identical products and saves them money – that’s the most important thing. Brands will soon get the message that consumerism is out and more thoughtful purchasing is in.

Xo

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Regrets? Reviewing my 2019 purchases

Like any beauty addict, I’ve bought a lot of products this year. Some have been massive hits, while others have seriously missed the mark. One thing that’s for sure, there are a LOT of products.

By Terry Gem Glow Trio Highlighter – ยฃ28

This was a repurchase. I bought this BEAUTIFUL highlighter and needed another to keep perfect in my collection. I’ve never really bought products to keep them as a collectors item before, but after trying this, loving this and being bowled over by the appearance of it, I just needed to have another. I haven’t used my original one that much since buying it last December so I’ll have to dig that out.

Marc Jacobs Enamored Lip Gloss Sticks in Mocha Choco Lata and Uh Huh Honey – ยฃ22 each (ยฃ44)

If you haven’t read my full review on this product you can find it right here! The lip gloss stick is easily one of the most innovative products I’ve seen. It is the perfect hybrid between a lipstick and a lip gloss – it’s amazingly comfortable on the lip, isn’t sticky and is almost like a very pigmented lip balm. I have repurchased Mocha Choco Lata a few times now as it is a fantastic nude shade that I will continue to buy. Uh Huh Honey is much more of a 90s brown that personally looks a bit too cool toned on me and I have barely used it.

Beauty Pie Super Healthy Skinโ„ข Ultralight UVA/UVB SPF25 – ยฃ7.19

This is the best formula of SPF I’ve ever tried. It doesn’t feel greasy or smell of alcohol like some on the other end of the SPF spectrum. The only down side to this is that a) I can’t find it for the life of me, but more importantly b) it is only SPF 25. I personally like to have maximum protection on at all times but I would (when I could find it) use this in the winter when the UV index is lower. I’ve heard a lot of people saying the same thing, so it would be amazing if they came out with a factor 50.

Beauty Pie Super Retinol Anti-wrinkle Eye Cream – ยฃ6.67

I used this eye cream consistently at the start of the year but didn’t see any results. Booo

Beauty Pie Super Retinol Anti-aging Hand Treatment – ยฃ6.53

I was a bit paranoid about this because you can supposedly use it at any time of day, but it contains retinol which you shouldn’t really when the sun’s out. I don’t think this formula was really thick enough for my hands and didn’t see any long lasting moisture or improvements in the appearance of the skin.

Lani Tropical Super Serum – ยฃ16.99

This was a total dud for me unfortunately. I had seen this brand really hyped in the Instagram beauty community but the oil felt really thick and smelt super bad. I think it was supposed to smell like Jasmine… but it doesn’t smell like that if you know what I mean. I used it once or twice and cast it aside.

Ole Henriksen C Your Best Selfieโ„ข Brightening Moisturizer & Eye Crรจme Set – ยฃ18.70

I did a blog post on this duo a little while back (FIND IT HERE!) and this moistuiser and eye cream were okay, but only okay. Both products smelt amazing and felt pretty good on the skin, but not good enough to justify such a large price tag for the full size products.

WowYou Beauty Glow to Sleep – ยฃ18

This is a retinol moisturiser that is nice and thick. The inclusion of retinol in products always confuses me and makes me feel nervous. I would use this in the same routine as the Super Serum and it made my skin ridiculously smooth and soft… until it broke me out.ย  I thought that maybe I wasn’t supposed to mix those two products but it’s recommended by the brand on their website. I stopped using both products and haven’t revisited them since.

WowYou Beauty Super Serum – ยฃ18

A friend of mine always bigs up this brand so I placed an order. It is a lovely solid gel consistency that glides on really easily. Something about this serum always made me feel a little nervy but I can’t really put my finger on it. I need to revisit this one as well.

WowYou Macaron Lip Butter – ยฃ7 (thrown in for free)

I am very loyal to my Palmers lip balm but this got thrown in with my order and I’m so glad it was! This lip balm is EXCELLENT. If I hadn’t found such a good balm for a fraction of the price, then this would without a doubt be my go-to balm.

Mac Fix+ x2 – ยฃ16.15/ยฃ17 each (ยฃ33.15)

MAC Fix+ is a firm favourite of mine that sets the face and makes everything look a bit less powdery. Have gotten through so many of these over the years and will always repurchase. You get quite a lot of product and it lasts a very long time.

Nars Sheer Glow in Gobi – ยฃ33.50

This was a repurchase in an updated shade that actually suits me! Gobi is my perfect pale shade – I knew that this foundation was a winner already for me. I nearly ran out my old shade (Mont Blanc) which was never my shade to begin with but sometimes sales assistants don’t know how to shade match. It is a medium coverage that can be built up or sheered out. It gives the ultimate your-skin-but-better look!

Ole Henriksen Glow2OH Dark Spot Toner – ยฃ22

This product was soooo overhyped and really didn’t do much for me. I did a dedicated blog post on it that details my full experience with it, but in brief, I didn’t like this. I may have over used this on my skin type despite the claims hat it is gentle enough for everyday use. Knowing that I have normal-dry skin, I probably should have only used it a few times a week. It dried my skin out, especially around my nose and mouth and actually caused discolouration there. I would potentially give this another go, but this time I would only use it on my cheeks were I feel I do have some pigmentation.

Colourpop Yellow Mascara – ยฃ6.11 ($8)

This one was a little left field for me, but I really wanted to try a mascara that’s a fun pop of colour! I used this in a graphic liner look I did on my Instagram and really enjoyed it! It was a pretty good mascara and the yellow was super vibrant. Obviously, with it being yellow, it isn’t the most wearable mascara in the world – it certainly isn’t your every day look. That said, when I feel like doing something a little different, I do turn to this and it delivers.

Colourpop Numero Uno Black Liquid Liner – ยฃ6.11 ($8)

I was doing a Colourpop order anyway and this liner had just launched along side the coloured mascaras so I decided to pick this up. I didn’t feel like I had discovered the perfect black liquid liner yet and wanted to give it a go! This was really black and lasted well, but the felt tip was quite thin and made it a little harder to apply. I don’t like thick liner but I find that a thicker tip would have made liner easier for my exact style. I don’t know that I’d repurchase this at the moment because I’m enjoying the Eyeko one (mentioned further down) and Colourpop is a bit of a pain to get to the UK.

Colourpop She Palette – ยฃ12.22 ($16)

I bought this palette at the end of last year in the Colourpop sale and then promptly lost it. This was the repurchase and I remembered it being a bit better than it was. It has a lot of pinks that can sometimes bring out the pink in my own skintone and makes me look like I have an eye infection. I tend to use the shimmers more than the mattes but even still, this generally sits in my drawers.

Revitalash – ยฃ39

Unfortunately, this was quite a big waste of money. Initially I felt as though there was a good result quite quickly and then it flatlined. I got a ‘6 week supply’ which lasted far more than 6 weeks but my lashes are now even stumpier than before. And it๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿปwas๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿปexpensive๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป. I spent a lot of time worrying that it was going to run out before I got my desired results, which never materialised.

Fenty Sun Stalk’r Bronzer – ยฃ23

This is only the third bronzer I’ve ever used and it’s fabulous – here are all the details you need. Fenty came out with a bunch of shades for so many different skin tones and my shade (Inda Sun) is the perfect shade for very fair skin tones. It’s lovely and warm, builds well and blends like a dream. It’s quite hard to over do it with this, which is a massive perk! It’s a little pricey but lasts a really long time! I’ve hit pan now but there’s still loads left.

Beauty Pie Flawless Foundation Blending Sponge Duo x2 – ยฃ4.08 each (ยฃ8.16)

These are excellent beauty sponges that are a fraction of the price of one Beauty Blender. The blend exceptionally well and they are very easy to clean. The only thing I will say is that I’ve had a few instances of mould in the sponges that is super gross. Take care of your sponges.

Beauty Pie Jeju Overnight Moisture Superinfusion x2 – ยฃ9.04 each (ยฃ18.08)

This is my absolute favourite moisturiser for PM. It is AMAZING. It is a lovely, thick moisturiser that would be perfect for anyone with normal-dry skin. I tend to mix this in with the BYBI Buriti booster and it’s just heaven.

NYX Micro Brow Pencil x2 – ยฃ9 each (ยฃ18)

This is my go-to brow product and I don’t see this ever changing. It’s reasonably priced and it lasts a reaaaally long time. Ash Brown is the perfect shade to match my hair colour and I don’t think any other brow products could ever replace this.

The Ordinary 100% L-Ascorbic Acid Powder – ยฃ4.90

I wanted to add some vitamin C into my routine and thought this would be some sort of mask I could add water to and apply. It turns out, it wasn’t. I didn’t do enough research initially and when I got it and looked into how to use it, it was really tricky to use. Because I didn’t want to damage my skin and didn’t feel confident in mixing anything in with it, this has just sat in my drawer.

Milk Hydro Grip Primer – ยฃ27

There was a lot of hype around this and I was super interested to see how it worked – I even wrote a review on it. I have normal-dry skin and I assumed that this would hydrate my skin and hold my makeup on. It felt very sticky but left my skin looking pretty dry once foundation was applied. On top of that, it made products apply patchy and made it difficult to blend. I don’t feel like it did very much for the longevity of my makeup either and I thought that products lasted better without it.

Hugo Boss The Scent for Her Eau de Parfum 30ml – ยฃ38.95

I bought this scent on holiday last year and I loved it. I managed to find a really good deal on this on allbeauty.com, which has really good deals on a lot of fragrances. I’ve nearly run out of it now and I adore the scent. It’s very sweet and smells amazing in summer time. I wish it lasted on my skin a little it longer on my skin as it does fade quite quickly.

Weleda Skin Food – ยฃ12.50

I’ve been suffering with some serious dry skin on my hands (I suspect it may be a bout of eczema) and wanted a hand cream that would really pack a punch. This wasn’t it. Oh my gosh it is so greasy. I would put it on and it would smell like a garden (some sort of herb) and then it would leave my hands totally unusable for a long while, or until I wiped them off. Not sure where this is now but I don’t miss it.

Sjo Skin Happy Honey Oil – ยฃ34ย 

I did a lil review of the Happy Honey Oil and it’s a really nice oil. I think this would be a good oil for people that haven’t delved into oils before or those who don’t like most other ones. It’s very thin and sinks in very fast so can be used in the morning or evening. I personally like something a little heavier but it’s a great oil nonetheless.

Klairs Gentle Black Sugar Facial Polish – ยฃ15.36

I bought this as dupe for the Fresh Sugar Face Polish but for a fraction of the price. This is not as good as the Fresh scrub. It is a lot harsher on the skin – the sugar particles are a lot bigger and don’t melt away. It feels like like the particles were scratching the skin, though it did feel softer afterwards. It was after this flopped so hard that I knew I would eventually shell out for the Fresh exfoliator.

Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence SPF 50+ PA++++ x2 – ยฃ15.02 each (ยฃ30.04)

I bought this SPF last year and it was just incredible. I decided to repurchase it and it doesn’t seem as though I got the same formula. Kao, the parent company of Biore, announced that as of Feb 2019, they would be releasing a ‘new and improved’ formula of the essence and gel versions of this SPF… but the formula really is not improved at all. The previous formula was just beautiful – it was cooling, it spread and absorbed easily and was nourishing too. My main issue with the new formula is that you can smell the alcohol and you can feel it too. The second ingredient on the INCI list is ethanol which is one of the bad alcohols that dries out the skin. I could tell as soon as I put the new formula on the skin that it wasn’t the one I fell in love with originally. I ended up giving these away.

Pretty Athletic Cool Down Cleanser x5 – ยฃ18 (ยฃ63.18)

Can you tell I love this stuff by how many I’ve bought? If you want aaaaaall the details, you can find it here. I hate running out of this stuff and always need a back up. In the Black Friday sale, I picked up 3 backups which should last me most of the year now!

CliniqueFit Foundation x5 – ยฃ13.67/ยฃ20.50 (ยฃ88.84)

Without a doubt, this was the BEST product I tried this year. I wrote an entire review on how much of a banger this foundation isย and I am still in love. I am seriously worried that this has been discontinued because it is now out of stock on their website and on Selfridges and has been for some time, but I really hope it will come back because I adore this! In my panicked state, I bought 3 more back ups of this because I can’t bear to be without it! It suits my lifestyle perfectly in that it is very longwearing and lasts beautifully throughout my long day.

Milk Stick Bronzer in Baked – ยฃ17.42

I bought this stick bronzer to avoid using powders in the summer time, plus I had been wanting to try Milk for ages and when they finally arrived at Cult Beauty, well it was fate. I went for the lighter of the two bronzer shades but was a bit worried that it would still be a bit dark for me. Actually the shade was perfect! I really loved using this though it was quite a faff. It was much more time consuming to apply than a powder bronzer, but I didn’t have to worry about my face turning to sludge in the heat. I would generally use a different sponge to blend this in to avoid applying the bronzer to other areas of my face by accident, though this did happen a few times. Once the weather cooled off a bit, I put this to one side and picked my Fenty bronzer back up. I’ll definitely be revisiting this very soon and if you like stick products, you’ll love this! You get heaps of product and I’d be surprised if you ever managed to use it up!

Milk Stick Blush in Werk – ยฃ17.42

Everyone raves about this blush from Milk, but honestly I just couldn’t make it work for me. I find stick products quite difficult to work with and whenever I used this I would apply too much and end up looking like Bridget Jones when she goes to Mark’s lawyer dinner with bright red cheeks. It is a really lovely shade, probably the most natural/neutral in the line, but whenever I would over apply it it would look a lot like a bad sunburn! Maybe it’s unlucky for me as I am quite pale and it is the exact shade I go when I’m burnt, but it made me quite nervous to use it because I would mess it up every time.

Milk Glow Oil in Glimmer x3 – ยฃ12 each (ยฃ36)

I bought three of these, one for me and two to give away. I preferred this glow oil to the blush because it is less pigmented and way easier to blend out. However, I’m really just not a massive fan of stick blush and I’ve barely used this.

Pixi Glow Mist – ยฃ16

I needed a new mist to work with my Hourglass Vanish Stick Foundation. If I don’t have a very dewy base then it’s too dry on my skin. I got a bit confused by this spray because I felt like there was some highlight/makeup in it and that put me off using it as a skincare product. There was actually no need for me to be put off it so I’ll have to pull this out and get using it again. Plus I need to use up my Hourglass stick.

Benefit Roller Lash x2 – ยฃ17.60/18.60 each (ยฃ36.20)

My favourite mascara ever! I think the formula can be a little dry on my eyes sometimes but it’s just the best mascara I’ve ever used. I’ve been using this mascara for about 5 years now and it’s just excellent. I know exactly what I’m getting with it and it lengthens and lifts my lashes beautifully.

Maybelline Lasting Drama Gel Eyeliner in Brown – ยฃ6.30

Used it once, never used it again. I’ve tried the black gel liner before and it’s pretty good but it dries up really quickly.

Beauty Pie Fresh Glow Breathable Setting Spay x3 – ยฃ5.28 each (ยฃ15.75)

When I got the email for this, I knew I wanted to try it. I bought two on the day it launched and fell in love with it as soon as I used it. The bottle is pretty small (50 ml) but it lasts a really long time. Unlike other sprays, you don’t have to fan it down to dry it. It is a really natural finish that makes makeup look much more life like.

Lancรดme L’Absolu Mademoiselle Shine Lipstick in 157 – ยฃ24.30

I fell in love with this one after I say Allanaramaa on Youtube using it. It was a lovely sheer red shade that looked perfect for summer! I wanted to have it for my summer holiday… and then I saw the price – ยฃ27 for a sheer lipstick! I nearly fainted. In the end I managed to get this with some sort of discount on it otherwise I wouldn’t have picked it up! It was a lovely colour but I probably didn’t get as much wear out of it as I should have done.

Kiko Lipstick – ยฃ6.99

This is a sheer red lipstick that I bought as a dupe for the more expensive Lancome one. It did work really well and is really quite comparable! But I still couldn’t resist the pull of the luxury lipstick.

Kiko highlighter – ยฃ5.99

I had just purchased the Milk bronzer and blush and regretted not picking up their highlighter to have the triology. When I found a stick highlighter in KIKO, I was really pleased! It was a really lovely light gold shade that looked a great dupe! However, when I applied it to my face, it stayed quite sticky and my hair would get stuck to my cheek throughout the day. It was REALLY annoying and I haven’t worn it since.

Body Shop Camomile Cleansing Oil x4 – ยฃ12 eachย 

This is a great oil cleanser that is really affordable. I tried this after I used the Kiehls Midnight Cleansing Oil and fell in love with cleansing oils but didn’t have the budget to consistently repurchase it. This is a great, more affordable alternative that removes makeup and SPF brilliantly.

Body Shop Vitamin E Eye Cream – ยฃ13

I used this eye cream pretty consistently for a few weeks and literally noticed no difference. I don’t know if I just expect too much from eye creams but they always let me down.

Body Shop Drops of Lightโ„ข Pure Resurfacing Liquid Peel – ยฃ18ย 

This ruined my skin lol. It is a gel consistency and when you apply it to the skin and rub it around, balls of gunk come up where the dead skin cells are exfoliated. It’s very satisfying to use and see the gunk but I think it was too strong on my face. Immediately after using, everything stung for days. I have not used this on my face since. I thought it could work well on my arms as I have Keratosis Pilaris and while it feels okay and a touch smoother straight after, it doesn’t last.

Body Shop Roots of Strengthโ„ข Firming Shaping Essence Lotion – ยฃ17ย 

This one never really got a fair shot. I got it at the same time as the resurfacing liquid peel and this made my skin sting when I used it because the peel over exfoliated my skin. I was too nervy to use this again.

Sol de Janeiro My Sol Stick x2 – ยฃ24 (ยฃ48)

I repurchased this twice since this summer and it’s been a dream. The scent is just beautiful – it’s different to the standard bum bum smell and is a mix of caramel and nuts. It’s really user friendly and perfect for on the go, it comes (obviously) in a stick and is great for reapplying as the day goes on. It can feel on top of the skin a bit if you don’t rub it in, but it’s easily remedied.

Sol de Janeiro Samba Foot Fetish – ยฃ25

I had heard really good things about this but I don’t think that this foot cream was the most moisturising. It does have that amazing bum bum cream scent, but I don’t think it is quite nourishing enough for my feet. In the end, this was pretty basic moisturiser with a nice smell, but not one I would repurchase for ยฃ25.

Kosas Tinted Face Oil – ยฃ30

I wrote a mini review of this on my Instagram a while back (here it is!) where I basically said this is okay but pretty overpriced for what it is. It’s light coverage but does manage to cover a fair amount, but it’s not the longest wearing foundation ever. I always need a longwearing base as I work in the city and commute each day, but if you’re not doing much in the day or only need to wear your makeup for a few hours then this will probably work very well for you. I managed to get this with a ยฃ10 off voucher on Cult Beauty because I refused to pay full price for it. In my mind, the more coverage a foundation offers, the more justified a high price is. However I just don’t think it’s lighter coverage foundations warrant such a high price tag.

Eyeko Eye Do Liquid Liner – ยฃ16

This was a repurchase and it is a very black liner that is really easy to apply. It is the darkest black liner that I own and I know I can rely on it. The felt tip is really nice and thick so it is much easier to try and get the shape that I want. It doesn’t dry out like some other felt tip liners do so it lasts a really long time!

Garden of Wisdom Vitamin C Serum 23% + Ferulic Acid – ยฃ10

I had heard great things about the GOW vitamin C and it’s so affordable I decided to give it a go. I used it consistently for a little while but didn’t notice much of a difference. When I received some of the I Dew Care products, I swapped over to their vitamin C instead. Now I have finished that one I need to change back over to this, if it’s still good.

BYBI Boosters – ยฃ12 each (ยฃ105)

I purchased the Strawberry, Buriti, CBD, Blueberry and Bakuchiol boosters from BYBI. My absolute fave is the Buriti booster which I like to add a few drops into my moisturiser in the evenings. I’ve repurchased the Bakuchiol and Buriti boosters the most times, Strawberry twice and have only bought CBD and Blueberry once. Strawberry is for drier skin, CBD is for acne prone skin, Buriti is for sensitive skin and Blueberry is to protect from blue light. I got a few little spots from the Strawberry and CBD one but just adjusted the amount I used (AKA didn’t douse my face in oil and added a few drops to my moisturiser instead).

The Ordinary Rose Hip Oil x5 – ยฃ9 each

I think I’ve repurchased this five times this year and I will continue to repurchase this going forwards. I adore this oil, it’s a firm favourite of mine and I can’t bear to be without it. It’s so affordable and gives me such super soft skin that I don’t think I’d ever try a more expensive rosehip oil.

Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence – ยฃ15.59

Another repurchase that I didn’t realise I would miss until it ran out. This essence (I suppose like most essences) preps the skin really nicely for all the products to follow and makes me skin feel really soft and smooth. When I ran out of my first bottle, I didn’t repurchase it because it’s a bit difficult to get hold of. In the UK this is quite expensive and I didn’t want to make a Yes Style order for a while. In the time I didn’t have this, I noticed that my skin wasn’t as soft and things just felt different. It took me quite a long time to pinpoint what was missing but eventually remembered that I had run out of this. I did a Yes Style order straight away and will continue to repurchase this!

Ole Hendriksen Phat Glow Facial – ยฃ42

When this product launched, EVERYONE raved about it. Ole Hendriksen is really overhyped to me having tried three of their other products and it won’t waste my money on their products again. I used it twice in one week and broke out immediately.ย  I got breakouts in places where I would never usually get them (on my cheeks) and caused a massive spot near my mouth that I couldn’t shift for over a month. It was really disappointing at the time because I bought this as a reward to myself for losing a stone. I think this was probably the product that messed my skin up and I’m still fighting now (in December) to sort my skin out when I used this in mid-September. I don’t know if this over-exfoliated my skin and compromised my skin barrier but it only did it in one area? I stuck to the recommended usage (twice a week) so I’m not impressed at all.

Dr Jart Ceramidin Cream – ยฃ26.35

If you have dry skin, this will be your best friend. This honestly is a moisturiser like no other. It is aimed at dry to very dry skin and it is probably the thickest moisturiser I’ve ever come across. I’ve repurchased this 3 times I think and I will continue to repurchase. I keep this on reserve for when my skin is going through the ringer in winter and it always sees me right.

Japanfusion Supreme Cream – ยฃ9.92

Another repurchase that I’ve enjoyed for a long time. This is my go-to am moisturiser – it’s lovely and light for the morning and I think it would suit both dry and oiler skin types. It’s a gel moisturiser that absorbs quickly and leaves no heaviness. If I had oily skin, I would use this at night instead of in the morning.

Beauty Pie Japanfusion Deep-treatment Serum – ยฃ8.17

This was a repurchase of a serum I forgot about, not because I didn’t like it but because whenever my allowance updates on Beauty Pie, I’m always looking to pick up their moisturisers that are total HG for me. This is a great serum that is really moisturising and hydrating and my skin now misses it. It’s quite thick and is a bit gel like which I think makes it pack more of a punch.

Beauty Pie Superactive Capsules Pure 3% Resveratrol Microsponge + Exotic Fruit Oils – ยฃ10.10

I was really curious about the capsules that BP offer and so I picked these up. It took ages for me to try them out and honestly I’ve only used one once. They felt very thick and silicone-like and that really put me off. I will eventually use these again, but I think I would add a squirt of hyaluronic acid in there so that it spreads much easier across the skin. I think this is also probably a lesson in only buying skincare that you need, rather than aimlessly buying ‘cool’ looking stuff with no idea what it does or why I need it.

Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara – ยฃ13.60

I bought this over and over again a few years back but was frustrated with the size of it and how quickly it would run out. I decided to repurchase it as I was getting sick of my lower lash mascara transferring under my eyes and making me look daft. Of course it didn’t disappoint but has run out really quickly. For ยฃ17 (yes, ยฃ17) I wish they would make it bigger because it’s exorbitant for the amount of product you actually get and it does give really good results. The brush is really small so it coats each lash and there is minimal transfer. I’ll begrudgingly repurchase this again because it is so good.

Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips 2 in JK Magic, Glowing Jen and Dancefloor Princess – ยฃ23 each (ยฃ69)

When the Hot Lips 2 collection came out in the summer, I fell in love with them. I always think that it is quite hard to judge shades online, so when I tried them in store, I fell for all three shades. Without a doubt the most beautiful shade is JK Magic – it is the ULTIMATE nude and by far my most used shade. Dancefloor Princess is very similar to JK Magic but with a pink undertone rather than a nude/brown while Glowing Jen is considerably darker and is described on the website as ‘a ‘tawny rose’ shade (whatever that means) and is just a darker pinky nude. I haven’t really worn Glowing Jen or Dancefloor Princess that much (GJ only once, DP maybe twice?) so I’ll have to work on that in the new year.

Kiehls Midnight Cleansing Oil – ยฃ25.72

I got the smaller size of this last year and it was really nice. I love the Midnight Recovery Oil so I had a pretty good idea that I’d like this too. I bought this as a treat to myself just before my birthday as something a little more luxurious. It smells like Lavender and does contain lavender essential oils, so if that’s not your thing, you might not like this too much. However, it works really well to remove stubborn makeup, leaves the skin feeling really soft and smells amazing.

Charlotte Tilbury Rock n Kohl Eye Cheat – ยฃ15.28

This was another repurchase for me – my other one lasted months and months. I wanted a good nude eyeliner for my waterline to open my eyes a bit more and give a brighter look. I’ve been doing this for years and find that nude looks so much more subtle than white, which can look really quite stark and obvious. My eye looks are never complete until I line my waterline with a nude. This eyeliner is expensive for what it is, but it lasts absolutely ages!

Belif The True Cream Moisturising Bomb – ยฃ29.82 (โ‚ฌ34.94)

I have been lusting after Belif products for aaaaages but they’re next to impossible to get a hold of here in the UK. When I went to Sephora in Spain, I knew I had to pick it up. This is a really nice moisturiser – it probably suits my AM routine a bit more as it’s probably not quite thick enough for nighttime. It is really moisturising but has seemingly been breaking my out. I have a troublesome patch around my mouth which breaks out really easily at the moment. When I first tried this out, there were no issues around that area so I know it’s my skin rather than the product.

Belif Moisturising Eye Bomb – ยฃ33.23 (โ‚ฌ38.95)

Like the Moisturising Bomb, I had my eye on this one for a long time. I had heard great things about it and it’s a great consistency. It’s pretty moisturising under the eye but if I’m being super picky, I would probably want it a bit more. Because it is lightish (it’s not heavy at all), I’d use this in day time. I need to test it some more – I keep forgetting to use it!

YTTP Superberry Hydrate + Glow Dream Mask – ยฃ30.67 (โ‚ฌ35.95)

Youth to the People is really hard to get a hold of in the UK so I went a bit wild when I went to Sephora in Spain. I wanted to try the Superberry Dream Mask but have only tried it once so far on the night I got home from the airport super late and couldn’t be bothered with my entire routine. My skin felt good the following morning, but I haven’t really had a chance to give it a proper go because my skin has been a bit troublesome lately.

YTTP Adaptogen Deep Moisture Cream – ยฃ40.91 (โ‚ฌ47.95)

This moisturiser is esssspensive. Despite it being called the ‘Deep Moisture Cream’, I don’t find it to be the thickest consistency and was surprised by how thin it was. Regardless I bought it because I wanted to try it out. I haven’t used it on my face yet because of my troublesome chin, so I’m still waiting to use this! I don’t think I’d repurchase this because a) it’s hard to get a hold of in the UK but b) I have other great moisturisers for far less money.

YTTP Superfood Cleanser – ยฃ8.49 (โ‚ฌ9.95)

This cleanser had me super curious so I bought a mini of it. It is an excellent texture on the skin – it’s quite a thick gel that lathers a little bit and leaves the skin feeling VERY soft. Hoooowever… this broke me out ๐Ÿ˜ฆ I think my skin is just in a really rubbish place at the moment and I need to address the underlying problem before I can keep using

Peace Out Spots – ยฃ16.16 (โ‚ฌ18.95)

I’ve been interested in trying out pimple patches for a long time but was unfortunate enough not to get any spots???? Well luckily my luck has changed and I finally had the chance to use them. I can’t say I had the awesome outcome that others have had where loads of gunk comes up on the patch, but it did go down over night after I used it. This has happened a few times but I’ve never noticed that these had incredible results.

Marc Jacobs Beauty See-quins Glam Glitter Eyeshadow in Pop Rox – ยฃ21.80 (โ‚ฌ25.55)

I had been looking for a glitter eyeshadow for the longest time in a shade that actually appealed to me. Pop Rox is a lovely light pink/purple shade and doesn’t have too much fall out. It does tend to get less pigmented on the eye the longer you wear it but it still looks very pretty.

Marc Jacobs Beauty O!mega Glaze All-Over Foil Luminizer in Showstopper – ยฃ38.86 (โ‚ฌ45.55)

I got totally dragged in here. I tried this shade over the top of the highlighter I had on and it had the most beautiful pink shift to it. I didn’t buy it on the spot, but I literally couldn’t take my eyes off my cheek bones all day and had to go back for it. Since buying it and using it on holiday, I haven’t used it a great deal. I really need to get more use out of it, but it’s so massive (It’s the same size as the O!mega bronzer), she isn’t going anywhere fast.

Sephora Vivid Earth palette – ยฃ11.90 (โ‚ฌ13.95)

This is a copper/gold/khaki eyeshadow palette and it was total crap. The shadows were really chalky and sometimes they would blend out too easily and other times they would not blend at all. I destroyed it instead.

The Ordinary Alpha Arbutin 2% + HA – ยฃ6.93

This used to be a holy grail of mine and it really helped to get rid of acne scars on my cheeks. I stopped using it for a few years when I felt my scars had gone and decided to repurchase it. It isn’t agreeing with certain areas at the moment, so I’m only applying it on my cheeks where I’m trying to reduce some pigmentation.

Paula’s Choice Resist Daily Smoothing Treatment with 5% AHA (50ml) – ยฃ24.75

I purchased this because I wanted to try more Paula’s Choice and I wanted to try some different AHA treatments. I am a physical exfoliant girl but most other people seem to prefer chemical exfoliation and I want to see what all the fuss is about. Like I’ve said before, my skin is a bit troublesome right now and I think this poked the bear. I’ve stopped using it for now but I’ll revisit this.

Paula’s Choice Resist Anti-Aging Eye Gel – ยฃ24

This is a really snazzy eye cream. I use this in the morning before makeup and it’s a lovely thin gel with a metal tip applicator. Not only is it cooling because it’s a gel, but the metal applicator really freshens up the under eye. I can’t say that I’ve noticed much of a difference from using it, but I haven’t been using it for long.

Fresh Beauty Sugar Face Polish – ยฃ43.20

I got a deluxe mini of this last year and I knew very quickly that I wanted a full size of it… until I saw the price. I tried to find a less expensive dupe but it just didn’t measure up. I managed to get it on sale at John Lewis for 20% off and had to make the most of it. Despite being a physical exfoliant, this is very gentle. The exfoliation beads melt under the fingertips and into the skin and leaves the skin silky smooth afterwards. There is honestly no comparison to the Klairs polish I thought could dupe it with. It’s just amazing.

Colourpop Single Shadows – ยฃ3.43 each ($4.50) (ยฃ20.58)

The single shadows from Colourpop are banging. They have excellent pigment, not loads of fall out and blend really easily. I got mainly nude shades (shock) and would definitely buy single shadows from Colourpop again.

Colourpop Ultra Glossy Lip – ยฃ5.34 each ($7) (ยฃ10.68)

I picked up two new lip glosses and have well and truly fallen for one shade in particular. Me V World is the most amazing orange red shade that is PERFECT for autumn. It lasts really well on it’s own and works really well over lipstick to make the look last even longer. Obviously with it being a gloss it does come off when you eat and drink, but it keeps the colour very well and it’s more the shine that goes.

Sol Body Shimmering Dry Oil in Warm Gold – ยฃ7.63 ($10)

I got a mini of the dry oil and it looks AMAZING. I’ve tried it on my hand and it is an excellent formula. Despite being an oil, it doesn’t stay wet or sticky at all (like I’ve seen from other formulas). It leaves a shimmer on the skin that would look amazing in the summer time, so I’m going to reserve this for warmer weather when I get my legs out.

Sjo Skin Happy Honey Mask – ยฃ33.60

This one was a repurchase. I absolutely adore this mask! This is the only mask that I ever notice a real difference with whenever I use it. Admittedly I do keep it on for a few hours each time, but my skin feels instantly softer after I take it off and any issues or blemishes I have are massively reduced the following day.

Colourpop Just My Luck Palette – ยฃ6.41 ($8.40)

I’m not really sure what got into me here. This palette was launched on St Patrick’s Day and is an all green palette. I have been wanting to try more khaki shades, which this palette doesn’t have a lot of (lol). I have green eyes, so I’m interested to try these shades out and see what I can create. Green obviously isn’t the most wearable shade for everyday (and would probably get some strange looks at my day job)

Colourpop Made in the Shade bundle – ยฃ11.76 ($15.40)

This was part of the recent coconut collection – the bundle contained the two lip crayons and the Go Coconuts palette. The lip crayons are both really lovely shades and feel great! They may suit people with lighter skin tones better but they do have pretty decent pigmentation that could work as quite light nudes on darker skin tones. The palette is a great cool nudes palette if you don’t have anything similar. The white shimmer shade is very chunky with quite a bit of fall out and no real colour pay off. I’d say if you already own nude palettes or singles, then you definitely have these shades. They come in a plastic palette (boo) that seems to be magnetic. Weirdly 5 of the shades completely fell out of my palette despite not being knocked or forced out. Overall, it’s a pretty good little palette for anyone who is new to eyeshadow.

Colourpop Aquarius Ultra Glossy Lip – ยฃ4.27 ($5.60)

This was a repurchase because it’s my go-to lipgloss. It’s a lovely pink nude shade that I often put over my nude lipsticks to just give more of a sheen. It does have quite a lot of pigment to the gloss, but it never overpowers the lipstick I put it over.

Colourpop No Filter Concealer –ย  ยฃ3.47 ($4.55)

RawBeautyKristi loves this concealer so I wanted to see what all the fuss is about! For $4.55 (on sale), it’s a total bargain! The shade range really impressed me – it had a massive range of shades and undertones and it went up really slowly with no big gaps. I went for Fair 08 and was amazed that for once I wasn’t the palest shade! Even this is quite light on me, which never happens! I think this has the shade range to rival a high end brand and seemingly a really good formula too. I need to test this one out a little more, but so far it’s two thumbs up from me. The only downside is how long it takes to get to the UK from America.

Colourpop Blush Stix –ย  ยฃ4.27 ($5.60)

I picked up this blush stick in More is More as a dupe for the Fenty Match Stix in Trippin’. Both are pink shades with a coral shift, though the Colourpop one is a much creamier formula. Because it is creamier, it means it’s much easier to get a lot of pigment, so use this sparingly.

Colourpop Bronzer – ยฃ3.74 ($4.90)

Now that I’ve reached pan on my Fenty bronzer, I wanted to find a newer, cheaper dupe. Colourpop have a really good shade range when it comes to bronzers so I picked one up. It is very pigmented formula but there is a LOT of kickback in the pan. Normally I’m not that bothered by fall out but there was SO MUCH OF IT. It managed to get all over a grey jumper of mine somehow, which I wasn’t too impressed about! You’ll have to use aย much lighter hand with this than you would with the Fenty one or you’ll end up with a band of brown across your face.

Fourth Ray Mellow Milk Mist – ยฃ4.27 ($5.60)ย 

I see a lot of people using and loving mists and I’ve never really got the hype? A lot of mists can be quite pricey and I’m just not prepared to spend a fortune on something I’m just going to spray on my skin and use up quickly. I haven’t used this yet, but it looks pretty good and it’s very affordable. I found it very strange though that the full ingredients list was no where to be found on their packaging (the bottle or the box). They have their ‘key’ ingredients on the box, but I’m interested to know how high they are on the INCI list.

Pat McGrath LuxeTrance Lipstick x2 – ยฃ10 each (ยฃ20)

These lipsticks are usually ยฃ35 EACH. On Cyber Monday these went down to ยฃ10 each and every gal and her nana were picking these up. I had never swatched these before and had never even tried Pat McGrath before (because of the price). I used Temptalia to see reliable swatches and picked Donatella and Unnatural Natural. These both looked quite different when I got them in person but I’m going to force myself to use them to get the most out of them.

~

TOTAL – ยฃ1,945.48 (YIKES!)

Looking back at my purchases from this year is pretty terrifying but so productive. I tried out so many hyped brands and products and ultimately so many of my purchases weren’t worth it. There are brands that I now would not revisit because they’re products are pretty bang average. I’m surprised I spent as much as I did to be honest but I know for sure that I won’t spend that much this year coming. It is quite eye opening to review my purchases like this but it’s a really great learning exercise.

Did you try any of these products? What did you think?

Let me know!

Xo

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The Perfect Party Makeup

It’s party season and time to get glam! Here is a quick list of tips on how to master the ultimate party makeup.

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Base

There will likely be food, drink and lots of dancing – you need a foundation that is going to last. I’d recommend using your most long lasting foundation – it doesn’t necessarily have to be full coverage if that’s not your jam, but don’t take any chances by using a new one. Use a tried and true – mine would definitely be the Clinique Fit Foundation (check my review if you’re not familiar with this one). If you use a new one, you don’t know how it will last; whether it will oxidise; whether it will break down and where and gurl, you don’t need that kind of stress in your life. When it comes to bronzer, blush and highlight, you can go slightly more heavy handed than usualย IFย your party is in low lighting. If not, you may end up looking like Bridget Jones when she applies too much blush to Mark’s posh dinner. Just consider the occasion and think about how much makeup would be suitable – just because it’s a special event doesn’t mean you have to apply any more makeup than usual if you don’t want to.ย That being said, if you want disco ball cheeks, go for it hun.

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Eyes

Decide ahead of time whether you want to make a statement with your eyes or with your lips – NOT both. I personally would always choose to make a statement with my eyes rather than opt for a colourful lip because I am a massive nude fan, but do what suits your style! If you’re not confident in your eyeshadow/liner abilities, you might feel more confident opting for a really strong, beautiful red/dark lip.

If you are going for a statement eye look, be sure to test it out before the event. If you have this grand vision in your head and then either can’t pull it off or it doesn’t look as good as you imagined, you’re in trouble.

Try and think about what you’re wearing ahead of time so that your makeup can compliment it, not clash with it. Don’t wear an electric blue dress and do bright blue makeup to match – if in doubt, keep it nude. On the other hand, if you’re planning on wearing a LBD, you’ll have so many more options for your makeup because your outfit is basically a blank canvas.

Party makeup often features shimmer or glitter so if they’re your jam then go for it! Shimmer shadows are usually way easier to work with and tend to go with more looks. Glitter can look a little stark sometimes and can be super annoying to get right. Make sure you practise ahead of time and have yourself a good glitter glue (The NYX one is supposed to be really good).

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Don’t forget about your lower lash line! I’m a massive fan of a nude shade in the water line to open up the eyes and shadow along the lower lash line to really emphasise your eye shape but also to make the look seem more whole. If you have all this drama on the top and nothing on the bottom, it looks weird!?

Bolder looks always look better (in my humble opinion) with more defined brows. I tend to make my brows a bit thicker than they are naturally and make sure they are nice and sharp to suit the rest of the face.

Lips

How you do your lips at an event is very much personal preference. You might like to keep it festive and opt for a true red or a deep red to make a statement. Or if your eyes are doing the talking you might prefer a nude lip to tie it all in. Or you might like to throw all the makeup rules out the window and do a bright blue. It’s totally up to you! Personally, if I’ve gone for a bolder eye look, I would pair it with a classic nude and a gloss. If I had gone for a less elaborate eye shadow look but maybe went for a killer black liner instead, that is your opportunity for a deep or bright lip. If you want to go glittery for the occasion, do it!

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Here is my take on party season makeup – I’m not really into crazy colours and glitters, so my look is nude and flawless (if I do say so myself). I love getting dressed up and putting a bit of extra effort into my makeup. My eye look was a lot more smokey than the camera is picking up and was basically my usual brown nude look but dialed up a bit and with extra shimmer!

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I hope this is useful for anyone looking to get glam this party season, or just anyone looking to try something new!

Xo

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The CBD Salve that’s a total lifesaver

I’ve seen many people turning to CBD to help manage chronic pain and a whole host of other illnesses but I never really thought that it would have that much of an impact… until I started using it.

I discovered came across Sweet Mary Jane at the Indie Beauty Expo this year and got chatting to the brand owner, Dee. She was a Sports TV producer on a whole host of massive US TV networks and would often get chatting to people who wanted something for their aches and pains. From there, Dee and her ex-husband created a line of CBD products that were both effective and attractively packaged.

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In case you’re not familiar with CBD, it is derived from the cannabis plant and actually interacts with our own endocannabinoid system. All humans and animals have one but l not too much is known about it as it was only discovered in the 90s. What we do know is that we have these receptors all throughout our body, which CBD is so effective when dealing with a whole host of issues, such as epilepsy, arthritis, anxiety, migraines and so much more. CBD is non-psychoactive which means that you will not get high from using it. Be careful not to confuse it with THC (the psychoactive compound) – CBD will not get you high.ย 

If you know me in real life, you’ll know that something is always going wrong – whether it’s my knees, my legs or my back. I first used this cream on my knee one morning and the pain dissipated nearly instantly. That’s when I had the idea to apply it on my back. I’ve been suffering with really bad back pain for quite a few months now. I’ve had to stop exercising and no matter how I sit or lay I’m in pain. I’ve obviously heard about CBD and the effects it can have medically but had always wondered whether it did in fact live up to the high praise. It does.

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Their CBD Soothing Salve has been life changing. For me, this works as a topical pain killer and I apply it just before bed. A little bit goes a really long way – it spreads well across the back without any pulling the skin and sinks in very quickly. I personally detest body moisturisers that linger on the skin and take ages to absorb and I have no issues with this. It has a cooling sensation, most probably from the inclusion of menthol, which has been proven to reduce back pain and muscle strains. Depending how much you apply, it is quite a strong sensation in that it’s noticeable and can make you feel a little chilly, but isn’t uncomfortable or painful in the slightest. This is the ultimate reset for my back and gets it back into a good place for the following day. Sometimes my back pain can spread through into my hips and as soon as I apply this to the affected area, the pain subsides. I’ve never used anything like this before and I haven’t been able to stop raving to my friends and family about it. This is an absolute MUST for me now.

On top of the pain relief, my quality of sleep has improved massively. I drink a lot of green tea which contains quite a lot of caffeine and had been struggling to fall asleep before I tried this salve. Now I fall asleep with no problem and sleep through the night, something which I never used to do. With my back pain, I had also been struggling to sleep as no matter the position, I could feel a pull in my back. I sleep with no pain or pulls now.

All of Sweet Mary Jane’s products are made in Oklahoma in small batches.ย This balm comes in at $30, but honestly with the results I’ve had, I would pay double for it. It is absolutely invaluable to me. If you’re looking for something to ease any sort of ailment, I would definitely suggest giving CBD a go.

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*This product was gifted by the brand and is SO unbelievably appreciated. It has honestly changed my life.

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Luxury Hyaluronic Acid – Sylaine Paris Hyaluronic Acid Review

Sylaine Paris are a French skincare brands that produce capsule skincare products. They currently have two products – Hyaluronic Acid and a Starry Night Serum that brightens the complexion. They were kind enough to gift me their hyaluronic acid to test out and after a long time testing, here are my thoughts!

Let’s start with the packaging – it’s beautiful. You can definitely tell that this is a luxury product by the beautiful box that it comes in. Inside the box are 30 capsules filled with hyaluronic acid. I found that each capsule contains far more than 1 day’s supply, so the 30 capsules lasted much longer than one month (bonus!). The capsule itself has very clever packaging! You have to screw the top off to squeeze out the product, but if you then turn the top upside down, it has a little stopper that you can then reseal the capsule with. I personally have never seen this on a capsule before, so I was really impressed and pleasantly surprised!

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The formula is just lovely – it isn’t sticky or tacky at all (like some other HAs – *cough* The Ordinary) and it leaves the skin feeling very smooth and plump. Other hyaluronic acids I’ve tried haven’t offered much in the form of hydration, but have just left my skin feeling sticky and thirsty. This delivered a heavy dose of hydration and didn’t have me rushing to get my moisturiser on. I’d definitely say that this is the nicest Hyaluronic Acid I’ve ever tried. But then again, for ยฃ75 it should be. That is perhaps the only downside to this product, as the price is probably a bit too high to encourage people to take a step up to a more luxurious feeling HA.

If HA is your THING, then I think you would really enjoy this. To be honest, I think you would really enjoy this if HA wasn’t your thing. However, what I mean is, if HA is a must-have, can’t-be-without ingredient for you and you want to invest in a luxury one, then this is your girl.

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A slight concern for me is the plastic packaging. Is it recyclable? Is it eco-friendly? Is it going straight to landfill? If these little capsules are made of plastic and are not recyclable, this is something that the company needs to change ASAP. With climate change being as big and as prominent a problem as it is, beauty aficionados everywhere are looking to cut down their beauty-related waste. While having daily doses of HA is convenient to travel with, it isn’t so convenient for the planet. I can’t say for fact whether this isn’t recyclable as I can’t find any info about it on their website or social media, but I find it quite odd that the brand hasn’t posted anything about the sustainability of their products.

Overall, this is a fantastic Hyaluronic Acid – by far the best I’ve tried. I personally would not repurchase this with my own money because the price tag is that bit too steep for my current situation, but I have really enjoyed using the product.

*Items gifted by Sylaine Paris

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Sustainable Beauty Brands

Following on from my BYBI post, we’ve established that sustainability is more than just having recyclable packaging. This week on my Instagram we’ve had sustainability week, where I shared eco-friendly brands in my collection. Of course there are far more brands than just what is in my collection, so here are some of beauty’s sustainable brands and some that have made a good start but have room for improvement.

BYBI Beauty

You’ve read my article about BYBI, you know they’re fab. If you missed it (you can find it here), they focus on responsible sourcing, clean manufacturing and packaging in recyclable materials. They definitely do more than most brands and have a very strong focus on sustainability (they even do monthly summits on the topic called Susty Summits and have their own in-house sustainability manager!). For Black Friday, or should I say Green Friday, BYBI are offering discounts on a variety of their products, but for every bundle bought, they will be planting 10 trees.

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Sjรถ Skin

If you haven’t heard of Sjรถ Skin, they’re a small Swedish brand that focus on honey based products. Each product is made with less than 6 ingredients and their honey is sourced from a local farm in Sweden where the bees pollinate wild flowers in the forest.. Their products are handmade in small batches, which makes the manufacturing portion of their supply chain super eco-friendly. Their packaging is largely glass (with a very small amount of plastic – dropper squeezer, lid)

REN

REN sustainably sources their ingredients (though there’s no extra info than that…) and makes sure that their packaging is eco-friendly. Their bottles are made from ocean plastic, while their tubes are made from post-consumer recycled plastic that is made to be recycled over and over again. They also work with organisations that clean up plastic from beaches, waterways and oceans. On top of this, REN have pledged to be zero waste by 2021, so all their packaging will be recyclable, recycled and reusable.

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Herbivore

All of Herbivore’s products are apparently handmade using sustainably sourced ingredients (though not much more info is given about this). All of their jars and bottles are made of glass. They are always looking at their supply chain to decrease their carbon footprint. Their team vets ingredient suppliers to ensure that they are all ethically sourced and sustainably harvested. The majority of their ingredients are sourced within the US, meaning their carbon footprint would be lower the closer to home they can source the ingredients.

Youth To The People

YTTP have glass packaging on all their bottles and jars and focus on creating clean formulas. They use a lot of natural, superfood ingredients but also make sure to comply with the EU’s list of banned ingredients in cosmetics, despite being a US based company. The FDA has only banned 11 ingredients, compared to the 1,300+ in the EU. They also work with a number of non-profits and activists to build a more just world and to save the planet!

Tata Harper

Tata Harper are famous for growing all of their ingredients on their special farm in Vermont and making and packaging their products in glass bottles and jars. When they do use tubes, the plastic resin is made from corn, rather than from petroleum, which is a renewable source. On the cardboard boxes, there is a label from the Sustainable Forestry Initiative that confirms that the material comes from a responsible source instead of unethical sources (e.g. illegal logging processes). By manufacturing all their products in house and by hand, they are able to have greater control over the sustainability surrounding the process. It is probable that they use much less energy and water by hand making the products and are able to have much more control over their energy sources (aka ensuring it’s renewable).

Paula’s Choice

Paula’s Choice actively seek to source their ingredients in a sustainable way wherever possible. Palm oil, which is often sourced in ways that harm the rainforest and it’s animals, are instead sourced from a Malaysian company certified for sustainable production. While they use plastic packaging, all parts including the caps are suitable for recycling. No additional, unnecessary plastic packaging is used – products are not wrapped in an additional plastic wrap and PC prints all their info directly onto the bottle.

WOWYOU Beauty

WowYou’s packaging is all recyclable and they also have a refill program. On top of this, their HQ usesย only energy from renewable sources and offset their carbon emissions by planting trees. This *Green* Friday, the brand will plant a tree for every ยฃ5 spent to further offset emissions and help to restore habitats. Theyโ€™re supporting the Eden Reforestation Project who work with locals in Madagascar to reforest areas that were destroyed, impacting the ability to farm the land and displacing native species.

The Body Shop

This has to be one of the original pioneering beauty brands when it comes to sustainability. They ensure that all their sourcing has no negative social or environmental impacts and launched โ€˜community tradeโ€™ all the way back in 1987 to ensure fair trading with suppliers. They were the pioneers for fair trade within beauty and currently have 31 community trade suppliers in 23 countries. They have empowered these communities, particularly women, and helped them achieve an independent income as well as building schools and enabling access to safe drinking water. They do still use plastic, but they believe that it used responsibly then it can be sustainable. They work with a community trade project in India to source recycled plastic – helping to tackle the plastic problem while also working with plastic pickers who have access to all the amazing benefits I mentioned above. Working with a Plastics for Change and local NGOs allows their waste pickers to receive a stable income, better working conditions and more opportunities.

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Lush

This one should come as no surprise to anyone. Lush use as little packaging as possible where possible and nearly half their products can be taken home without any packaging. Where packaging is unavoidable, they try to use recycled materials. Around 90% of their packaging can be recycled currently and they’re working on that last 10%. Sustainable sourcing is also high on their list – they do not use palm oilย at all in favour of more eco-friendly oils. Their website hints that they only collaborate with suppliers that respect the environment, animals and people living there. When it comes to manufacturing, they’re aiming to reduce energy and water consumption and specifically do not purchase energy from fracking companies. Lush accepts that sustainability is something that can always be improved on and in turn they want to use their buying power to drive change. I find it really interesting that it’s the most eco-friendly brands that make reference to the fact they aren’t perfect but are always trying their best, when other brands are trying much less and don’t talk about it.

Beauty Pie

They are always working to make their packaging as eco-conscious as possible. They use plant-based inks (Earthinksยฎ) which are one of the most eco-friendly inks on the planet. They also use recyclable and recycled board in all their cartons. It’s a good start but it would be great to know a little more about their sourcing and manufacturing. As Beauty Pie tend to work directly with labs in various different countries, it would be really interesting to know how much they know or can influence sustainable policy when it comes to manufacturing. Because they do work with these international labs, there will be a fair amount of carbon emissions involved in shipping to the UK and US, so it would be great to know a bit more about what they’re doing to combat this.

Good Molecules

Beautylish’s offering in the realm of affordable skincare is a line of a largely single ingredient products. All their bottled products come in glass packaging which are obviously much easier to recycle than plastic. They are starting to have a greater focus on their sourcing. The affordable skincare from Beautylish recently launched their Rosehip oil which was sustainably grown and hand-picked from the Patagonian Austral of Chile. By working directly with the growers, the brand can ensure that all parties are treated fairly and with respect, while also eliminating any markup from middlemen.

How to tell if a brand is sustainable

As consumers, we’re really reliant on brands sharing their sustainable policies. If they don’t share it, we can’t assume they’re doing it. Some companies share much more than others (BYBI, Body Shop) so we have a lot more insight into the brand and their practices. Personally I think brands should share what they’re doing and should want too as well! If brands have a particular focus on the environment, there is often a dedicated page for it on their site. If you Google the brand followed by sustainability, you might find the info you’re looking for. There might be info about it in their ethos, mission or on their about us page. To find out about ingredient sourcing, you can try each individual product page. If this information is missing completely… well you can guess what that means. Now that you’ve read all about brands that are doing the most, it will become very clear when you see brands doing the very least.

This list is by no means definitive. I’m sure there are many more brands that have sustainable sourcing practices, but they may not be as well known or well publicised.

In the coming years, I think sustainable sourcing, manufacturing and packaging will become a staple for all new brands coming to the market, but it will take quite a long time for the bigger brands to make this change. In my mind, this is fairly comparable to cruelty free products – every new brand that emerges now is cruelty free but the conglomerates are much slower to react. Just because a brand has recyclable packaging doesn’t make them eco-friendly. As the founders of BYBI said, it is the very least that any brand should be doing. People are starting to question eco-policies deeper and it’s only through this questioning that things will really change.

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BYBI Beauty – The Sustainable Beauty Pioneers

BYBI Beauty, Instagram’s most aesthetic brand, is one of the most sustainable beauty brands out there. Trust me, you have NO idea what it takes to be truly sustainable in the beauty industry… but BYBI do (and you’re about to).

*** Save 20% on sustainable beauty on BYBI.com by using code HANNAH20!***

Have you ever thought about how sustainable your beauty products are, and I mean really thought? My guess is probably not, and hey, you’re not alone there!ย But let me tell you right now, BYBI have definitely thought about it. They’re always thinking about it.

Most brands and most consumers judge the sustainability of their products by how eco-friendly their packaging is – whether it’s made of glass rather than plastic, whether it can be recycled or whether the box it comes in can be recycled too. However, it goes sooo much deeper than that.

BYBI’s aim is to make sure that all aspects of their supply chain is sustainable, with focus on three key areas: ingredients, manufacturing and packaging. They want to be leaders within the beauty industry and to influence other brands to take note and do better.

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INGREDIENTS

A BYBI ingredient is always one that grows in abundance and ethically sourced – double points if it is locally sourced. The distance ingredients have to travel obviously have carbon implications! They actively look for ingredients that grow quickly and locally that can be harvested multiple times a year.ย  BYBI’s shea butter supplier have a program that supports and empowers women in West Africa to keep growing and to smash life!

One of the coolest things that BYBI does (that youย mightย already be aware of) is that they take ‘waste’ products from other industries and upcycle them. This is the case for the Strawberry and Blueberry boosters – discarded seeds from the juicing industry are collected, sterilised and cold pressed to create beeeautiful, high quality oils. Because these seeds were ‘waste product’ and the fruits weren’t grown solely to harvest the seeds, the entire process is carbon neutral!

Stepping away from BYBI, consider this. Most products have more than one ingredient, with some products having over 30(!?) – can you imagine trying to keep track of all of the above for that many ingredients!? BYBI are setting a very high bar but it’s a bar that companies need to try harder to reach.

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MANUFACTURING

This is probably the hardest part of the supply chain to make sustainable. As lots of companies tend to outsource this step, brands have to rely on the manufacturers to give them accurate and truthful information on how sustainable their process is (which often doesn’t happen). BYBI’s products are made in the UK and have strict requirements that their manufacturers must adhere to. Ultimately, BYBI want to own the manufacturing process, but obviously there is quite a significant cost attached to that. They currently control the manufacturing of the Boosters at their facility in West London where they produce small batches by hand. By producing the Boosters, they’re able to have full control of the water and energy usage while keeping carbon emissions low.

PACKAGING

Although it’s great that brands are focusing on more eco-friendly packaging, it is the bare minimum that they should be doing. Over 120 billion units of packaging are produced by the beauty industry alone, so you can only imagine the amount of waste!

70% of BYBI’s packaging is glass, which is infinitely recyclable and come from sand – a natural material that’s available in abundance. Glass bottles and jars keep their integrity when recycled so they can use the same container over and over again.ย Tubes pose a greater challenge. However, BYBI have found a plastic alternative made from sugarcane. Sugarcane is obviously renewable, grows very quickly and absorbs CO2 when it grows – making the product carbon neutral! The growing of the sugarcane absorbs CO2, making this a carbon neutral produced material. On top of all this, BYBI has recently changed their parcel packaging to grasspaper – it grows much quicker than trees and is way more plentiful as a result!

They acknowledge that their packaging is far from perfect at the moment but that they are always looking for better alternatives.ย As there are so many new materials coming onto the market all the time, BYBI are always on the lookout for more eco-friendly packaging to move away from plastics entirely.

BYBI Beauty Bakuchiol Booster and Strawberry Booster

However, don’t confuse this with just a passing ‘trend’.

‘It’s a movement, not a moment’.

Hell to the yes ladies! As someone who is environmentally minded, finding out ALL of this about BYBI has just made me love them so much more. It’s really made me look at brands in a different way and consider my own environmental impact more.

The vast majority of this information is freely available on BYBI’s website and is really easy to find. It’s really admirable that the brand are so open about their sustainable practises – I’ve been trying to do some research on other brands to compare them and it is not nearly as easy to find the rest. Hat’s off to you BYBI – taking the lead and showing us all how it’s done!

Xo

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ILIA Brand Review – True Skin Serum Foundation, Multi-Stick and Color Haze

When ILIA reached out and offered to send some products over, I nearly fell off my chair. I’ve been testing out their True Skin Radiant Priming Serum, True Skin Serum Foundation, True Skin Serum Concealer, Clear Line Liquid Liner, Limitless Lash Mascara, Colour Haze Multi-Matte Pigment, Illuminator and Color Block High Impact Lipstick, so keep reading for my review!

ILIA Beauty are a clean beauty brand that infuses their makeup with skincare and (unlike some other clean beauty brands) recognises that not every natural ingredient is good for the skin, likewise not all synthetic ones are bad. Their founder, Sasha, wasn’t content with the clean makeup she found on the market as it didn’t perform well. She set out to create her own line that had roots in natural ingredients, be safe to use, look good and perform exceptionally. I personally think she has nailed each one of these with ILIA – I have never found a clean makeup line like it!

I was completely bowled over by the generosity of the brand when they sent over basically a full face of makeup, so here are my thoughts on what was sent over:

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True Skin Radiant Priming Serum

I personally love a primer, so I was really excited to get to try out a new one. This one comes in a tall bottle with a dropper and (as the name suggests) is a lovely, fresh serum. The primer has an amazing shimmer to it (as you can definitely see in the image below) to give a beautiful radiance to the skin, but not a noticeable glimmer once it’s applied. The primer contains hibiscus extract to protect against free radical damage, while beta-glucan helps to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and Mastic (a resin from a tree from the Greek island of Chios) works to mattify and refine the skin throughout the day.ย  It is silicone, fragrance and gluten free. Some people have said that it helps to balance out skin tone but I can’t say I’ve noticed that as I don’t have a lot of time in the mornings and move straight on to foundation. It definitely preps the skin well for makeup and leaves the skin feeling really hydrated for makeup application. When it dries down, there is a slight tackiness but not in a bothersome sense at all. I haven’t really tried a serum primer before – usually the primers I use feel a bit silicone-y or they are a gel, but this one is unlike any other. This could be a great primer for all skin types!

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True Skin Serum Foundation

The True Skin Serum Foundation is medium coverage that can be built up to for more coverage or sheered out to a lighter coverage. For a serum foundation, it is not as liquidy as you would expect but feels fabulously light on the skin. It contains a blend of botanical actives (including aloe leaf, jojoba, marula and rosehip oils) that help to plump the skin, soothe irritations and reduce redness all while ensuring that the product melts effortlessly into the skin for a more even, luminous base. Pores are minimised and imperfections are blurred to give the ‘your skin but better’ effect. This foundation is cruelty free, gluten free, vegan and non-comedogenic.

This has become my everyday foundation because it holds upย so well. My average day of makeup wearing is 12+ hours, with 2 sweaty commutes and an hour long walk in between. While this will still break down in certain areas (between the nose and mouth particularly), it is never noticeable. By the end of the day, my base still looks really beautiful and skin like. I have only ever found that my Clinique Fit foundation lasts as well as this (and this is made to hold up well with sweat). I don’t think it is advertised as a long lasting foundation, but it really is! I usually wear this as a light-medium foundation, but I do find when I build this up a little more that some of my lines are a bit more visible (smile lines around my mouth). I don’t see this as an issue with the foundation, but rather that I went too heavy handed with it – but just be aware that that can happen!

There are 18 shades in total at the moment, and 2/3 of them sit within the light/medium category.ย  This is a decent start but I think ILIA can do better. I would want to see a shade extension to give a much wider variety of shades for those with darker skin, adding an entirely new category to expand on ‘deep’. I’m hopeful that with the recent shift towards inclusion in beauty that this will happen pretty imminently.

True Skin Serum Concealer

I was very impressed with this concealer. After trying the foundation, which was quite liquidy and light coverage, this had a lot more coverage than I was expecting! It contains stabilised vitamin C, mastic and albizia julibrissin bark extract to protect from environmental aggressors and mattify the area all while firming, soothing and nourishing the skin’s surface. While it says that mastic helps to mattify, it does not have a matte finish, nor does it make any area look dry. Upon application, this immediately fixes any dark circles or darkness under the eyes and makes the area look flawless. It can be used to add additional coverage for other areas of the face and has a really beautiful finish.

When I set this with my Hourglass Ambient Lighting powders, it basically wiped the concealer off and made me look as though I had some sort of skin condition? It was very strange. Once I re-applied it and didn’t set it, it was totally fine but also didn’t crease at all. I usually set my under eyes so that my lower lash mascara doesn’t transfer, so I was extra impressed that there was no transfer or creasing. This is definitely a concealer that does not require powder and sets and lasts beautifully on its own.

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Clear Line Liquid Liner in Midnight Express

Thought I’m not an eyeliner expert, I do wear it pretty much every day. This is easily one of the best liquid liners I’ve tried because the felt tip applicator comes to a really small point and is nice and wet. The colour is a really dark matte black that doesn’t smudge at all and stays in place all day. It makes eyeliner application really quick and easy, which I love!

Limitless Lash Mascara

I’m always quite skeptical about trying new mascaras because I have my holy grail mascara that I haven’t strayed away from for 4 years (Benefit Roller Lash). However, I’ve been SO impressed with this one. The lightweight formula contains a blend of bee and carnauba waxes to condition the lashes while keeping them lifted. Because it contains bees wax, this one isn’t vegan but it is still cruelty free and gluten free.

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This brush is really unique – on one side, the bristles go straight across, like the teeth on a comb and are spaced out evenly to separate the lashes. On the flip side, the bristles look softer and are on a curve to hug the lashes and give them some serious volume. I like to start with the curved softer side to lift the lashes and get a good coating on them before using the straight side to separate them out. The formula was good from the start – often mascaras are too wet when you first open them and it’s quite hard to get the effect that you’re after.

Color Haze Multi-Matte Pigment in Waking Up

This is a multi use product for the cheeks and lips is really beautiful but I personally find it really hard to use. I just don’t think liquid blushes are for me. This contains jojoba oil and coconut oil to condition the lips and skin. It comes in a tube with a metal tipped applicator, much like a lip gloss or a high-end eye cream. I’m not sure how useful this is as a blush applicator really, because you wouldn’t tend to apply blush in this way. The blush itself is REALLY pigmented so the tiniest bit goes a really long way.ย I don’t find this the easiest to blend out because I apply so little (to avoid MASSIVE amounts of pigment on my cheeks) and when there is very little it dries quite quickly and is difficult to spread it out.

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I can’t say I’ve tried it as a lip product yet, though the shade would make a lovely lip colour.

I find liquid blush really fiddly to use so it wouldn’t be my go-to blush. I’ve had to reapply my foundation over this a few times because it was far too pigmented and made me look like a doll with VERY rosy cheeks. I’m much more of a cream/powder blush kind of girl, but I know that this would be right up some people’s street.

Illuminator in Stella by Starlight

This is a really gorgeous shade when you look at it in the packaging… but unfortunately it doesn’t really translate onto the face. The product swatches really well on your hand but I found that it didn’t perform the same way on the face. I find the formula to be quite dry and hard, so you have to use quite a lot of pressure if applying from the stick or swirl your fingers quite a number of times to get a very limited colour pay off. You can use it directly out of the stick, though it disturbs the base and I’m suddenly very aware of how much I’m pulling at my skin to get the pay off. It’s much more effective to use your fingers to apply as it actually shows up and leaves the base intact. This is definitely a product for those looking for a more natural glow than anything particularly noticeable. I am someone that prefers a more noticeable highlight (though not a blinding one) and I would prefer a product that has a bit more pay off. This is probably the product I’ve used least from the brand just because the stick is so weirdly solid? I don’t really like to use products that are finickity and require a lot of time to perfect because it’s not time I have in the mornings. If the formula was a bit smoother and softer, this would be a lot better for me.

Color Block High Impact Lipstick in Amberlight

IMG_2135I received the shade Amberlight and as soon as I took the top off, I gasped. I actually gasped. Me and my sister both agreed that this is the PERFECT nude shade for light skin. On my skin, this is the perfect pinky-nude, but on darker skin this would probably read a lot more pink. The finish is certainly not matte, but isn’t super glossy either. It goes perfectly with every eye look and just looks absolutely stunning. There is a slight brown-nude tone to it that goes really beautifully with autumn makeup looks now the weather is getting colder. I’ve been reaching for this non-stop and will definitely continue to do so!

Overall, I’ve never been so impressed by a brand, EVER. I posted on my Instagram stories that the shades of foundation and concealer the brand sent over to me were too dark and they reached out straight away and offered to send over a different shade. I was so impressed with that response and even more stunned when two new shades of both the foundation and the concealer arrived at my door. I have never experienced such excellent customer service from a brand. Although two of the products weren’t my cup of tea, I can still appreciate the quality and I don’t doubt that they will be for someone.

This is probably my first time dabbling in proper clean makeup and it has been an absolute pleasure. I would definitely put ILIA up there with my favourite makeup brands now and I have my eye on more of their products (namely their eyeshadow palettes and lip glosses… and maybe more of their lipsticks too!).

If you would like to try out any products from ILIA, I do have an affiliate link down below if you’d like to use it.

Xo

****All products were gifted by the brand with no obligation to review. I have fallen in love and all expressions of love are my own****

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Beauty releases are getting out of control…

Beauty releases have gone into overdrive lately. Brands are coming out with new products at an alarming frequency, with some companies dropping a new products every. single. week. The real question is: what impact are these releases having on the brands, the consumers and the industry as a whole?

Monday marked Anastasia Beverly Hills’ seventh and eighth palette launch within 6 months. Previously, ABH would release their palettes periodically, usually one every three months. They are the most recent addition to the list of serial offenders when it comes to boring, constant releases – joining Colourpop and Makeup Revolution. However, these brands are certainly not alone. The whole beauty industry machine has started to speed up.ย 

Quick question…

Who asked for this?

Who explicitly asked for 5 new releases every week? Why has Colourpop taken it upon themselves to completely oversaturate the market?ย And do brands really expect consumers to have the money to keep up with this?ย 

It’s clear that the beauty industry has changed – new brands are launching all the time and non-beauty brands are increasingly dipping their toes into a lucrative market for a quick cash grab. Things have felt pretty crowded for a while. Perhaps because of this certain brands feel the only way to differentiate themselves is through constant releases. While the brand might be burnt into people’s minds, it’s pretty unlikely that it will be because of the products they’re launching, but rather for a more negative reason.

Brands

In my mind, for every beauty launch there needs to be buildup so consumers can really lust over a product, followed by a period of promotion to keep the launch in the minds of potential buyers. Part of the excitement is seeing ‘your’ product everywhere and not being able to get it off your mind. Seeing product tutorials and influencers using it builds the desire to own it.

Surely it canโ€™t be good business to be dropping new products left, right and centre? If you launch something week-on-week, it doesn’t create desire, but instead portrays the product as dispensable and not worth having. It also doesn’t give each new product enough time in the spotlight before attention shifts again.ย Brands do not spend such a long time perfecting product formulations and packaging for lazy (if any) marketing and gimmicks. Many launches now drop with little-to-no warning, which leaves many potential buyers caught off guard if they’re not given time to save up. It also seems rather presumptuous to assume that consumers will be able to afford product launches at a moment’s notice.ย 

Does any of this sound positive to you?ย 

When asked about the increase in new releases, Norvina from Anastasia Beverly Hills said on Twitter:

โ€˜It’s just the way the market is now we have to launch new stuff all the time because the consumers get bored and want more choicesโ€™.

By feeding into this toxic fad, it actually just serves to perpetuate the trend for themselves and other brands within the industry. To me it also shows a massive misunderstanding of what the consumer actually wants – coming out with vast amounts of unappealing products is the root of the problem, not the fact that the consumers want to move onto the next thing.ย 

She went on to say that someone who would buy the Norvina palettes (which are a series of bright warm colour stories, but you knew that) are unlikely to buy the Carlie Bybel palette (largely cool toned shimmers). This is certainly not false – they’re vastly different palettes with colour stories that would appeal to very different target audiences. However, I’m not sure that fact justifies dropping 4 palettes in the space of a month just because the target audience would be different. Norvina has tried to justify the situation by stating that the ‘Norvina’ line is to be a sub-brand within Anastasia Beverly Hills… but this was not made clear to the consumer at all, leaving that to sound remarkably like an excuse. The key issue with a higher end brand coming out with lots of new releases is the price point. When Colourpop started releasing their colour capsule collections, no one really batted an eyelid because the palettes only cost $12. However in the case of ABH, they have released 3 $45 palettes, 2 $29 mini palettes and 3 $60 palettes in the last 6 months alone. It is almost more acceptable for more affordable brands to release products more frequently as the price point is so much lower, but when a higher end brand jumps on the bandwagon too, it cheapens their brand massively. The exclusivity is gone, the feeling that you’re purchasing something special has vanished and die hard customers are left alienated by a company that seems intent on taking their money.ย 

If the aim is to increase the amount people are buying, then I’m afraid to say that that has flopped. People are probably more conservative with their spending now because there is so much to actually buy that consumers want to make sure they are spending on something worth while.ย 

Quality not quantity!

To me, these brands seem so desperate to stay relevant with their consumers that theyโ€™re actually making themselves irrelevant. It is possible to be a beauty brand these days, release products periodically and drum up some serious excitement! Brands like Hourglass or Nars have recently come out with their holiday collections which garnered so much interest! Whatโ€™s confusing is that all these brands have their core fan base that will support their every launch… before it became a weekly event.

Consumers

Beauty is, of course, subjective and what appeals to one person wonโ€™t appeal to another, but that in itself is not justification for mass product launches (but thanks anyway Norvina). In the beginning, I’m sure some people felt a compulsion to ‘keep up’. However as the beauty launch machine started to spew out more and more product, most people (if they’re sensible or don’t have a bottomless bank account) gave up.

Instead of new palettes and fresh ideas drumming up excitement and encouraging people to buy, it has created a feeling of dread, boredom and disinterest. We’re not able to get excited about a single ABH or Colourpop launch because another one follows so closely afterwards and wipes all memory of the previous one. Also as mentioned before, very few will be able to afford consecutive launches. The consumer feels STIFLED – it all feels like a money grabbing gimmick.

Wastage

Seeing as it’s 2019 and it’s relevant, letโ€™s look at it from a purely environmental point of view, or from a wastage standpoint. Itโ€™s pretty much guaranteed that no one will be able to use up the product they have before it expires. Most beauty addicts struggle with their existing collections, let alone trying to get through new products too, so most of that waste will probably end up going straight to landfill. In trying to fulfil this odd desire to pump out new product every week, Colourpop has actually taken a step back in terms of sustainability. Previously, their palette packaging had been made of cardboard, whereas now it has changed to hard plastic. WHY!? It just reinforces yet again that not only is it not benefiting the consumer or the brand, but it also doesnโ€™t benefit THE EARTH.

It’s odd to me that brands have got this so wrong. I haven’t heard a single person praising the influx of releases. Maybe brands will start to get the message and stop making a joke out of the amount they release (Colourpop, I’m looking at you). Or maybe they’ll only get the message when their sales start to dwindle as people put their interest in the brand to bed once and for all.ย 

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