Pampered skin routine

After a long hard day of smashing life, every so often I like to come home and really go to town on my skincare routine as a treat. This usually happens over the weekend and is one of my favourite ways to unwind and prep my skin for the week ahead.

Here is my step-by-step routine for perfectly pampered skin:

Cleanse

If I have makeup on then I’ll double cleanse, otherwise I’ll just use my second cleanser. For a more luxurious first cleanse I love using the Beauty Pie Plantastic Apricot Cleansing Balm. It’s a super rich texture that feels beautiful when massaging into the skin to break down your makeup. It feels super smooth and washes off really easily.

To carry on the facial massage, I love using the Pretty Athletic Cool Down Cleanser. It is a gel cleanser that cools down the skin and feels amazing. You’re supposed to massage it in for 30 seconds before rinsing off. Because of the soft gel consistency and the cooling sensation, it feels so luxurious and leaves my skin completely clean and my mind relaxed.

Exfoliation

I always see exfoliation as a treat to myself. My favourite at the moment is the Fresh Sugar Face Polish. Made with brown sugar and strawberry seeds, it’s strong enough to exfoliate away any dead skin cells but gentle enough to not feel like the exfoliants are ripping into your skin. As it’s made of sugar, the grainy particles will eventually exfoliate away into the skin, leaving you with baby smooth skin. There’s something super relaxing about not only massaging the face but feeling the grains dissipate away to nothing…

Mask

My favourite mask to use is hands down the Sjo Skin Happy Honey Mask. This brand is all over Instagram and is a firm favourite of influencers because it is the ultimate multi-tasker mask. I use this mask mostly to calm my skin and to make it smoother. I usually keep this on for an hour at least (if I can) and my skin emerges smooth as anything and feeling really rejuvenated. If I’m feeling really boujee then sometimes I will double mask and use something like the Farmacy Honey Potion Mask before the Happy Honey Mask (Clearly there’s something about honey that I like!)

Essence

This might not be an essential product for everyone, but it’s become a step in my evening routine that I don’t like to go without. Essences prepare the skin for the next products you apply to your skin and helps them absorb more easily. I find that it is just a good base to have that makes my skin feel more hydrated and makes it easier to spread other product out across my skin. I use the Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence.

Serum

If I’m treating myself, I will always use my Kiehls Re-Texturising Hydro Plumping Serum. This is very gel like in consistency and makes my skin feel unbelievably smooth and as though I’ve had a big glass of water.

Moisturiser

This one is a bit of a tricky step. If I weren’t to apply an oil after the moisturiser, I would hands down use Dr Jart Ceramidin Cream because it is the most beautiful, thick moisturiser. I love thick moisturisers because I have fairly dry skin and I don’t find that the thinner moisturisers give me any long lasting moisture. The only problem with this one is that it pills sooooooo badly. One I have been enjoying recently before I apply the oils is the new Dermalogica Intense Moisture Balance. It’s quite a thin moisturiser, but still is thick enough to really back a moisturising punch and more importantly doesn’t pill when I put oils on top of it.

Oils

Because I’m extra, I really like to apply two oils. The first is The Ordinary Rosehip Oil and the second is Kiehls Midnight Recovery Concentrate. I ran out of the rosehip oil recently and noticed that my skin was not as soft as before, so quickly repurchased it. I probably saw the biggest change in the texture and feel of my skin with the Kiehls oil, so I’ve never turned away from this product. It makes me feel so relaxed to massage this oil over my face (it’s a very smooth oil, the rosehip oil is a little thicker and sits a little heavier on the skin) and I like to hold my hands over my nose for a few seconds and breathe the lavender scent it. Lavender aids with sleep so this is always my last step before turning in for the night.

To add to the pampering mood, I love to burn candles. My favourites are super budget friendly – they’re from Home Bargains and cost just Β£2.99 for a massive one! They do various different scents, but my favourite hands down is the Gingerbread one. It makes me feel all cosy and ready to relax.

I hope you found my pampering routine useful. Let me know how you wind down and treat yourself!

Xo

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5 big beauty disappointments

Everyday we see hundreds of products on Instagram and beauty websites that tell us ‘this is the best product for your skin/hair/makeup routine’. But unfortunately not all of them live up to their hype.

Ouai

I had seen Ouai all over Instagram and on Cult Beauty and I so badly wanted to try it after seeing so many people rave about it. I asked for a set for Christmas full of minis so I could try an array of stuff. The hair oil made my hair really soft, but made my scalp really itchy. The foaming dry shampoo EXPLODED EVERYWHERE so I only got to use it once, which was a real disappointment. The wave spray made my hair a bit too stiff and greasy looking and didn’t help with my sensitive scalp. I am quite prone to allergic reactions to haircare, but now knowing that some of the products do have that effect on me, it doesn’t make me jump to try any more. Plus the products I did try were underwhelming.

Juno – Sunday Riley

Sunday Riley is a really hyped brand. Their stuff is in the most beautiful packaging and is featured on all the blogs, so I had really high hopes that Juno would be amazing. I had run out of my Kiehls Daily Revival Concentrate and didn’t feel strongly enough about it to repurchase. After doing some research into a morning beauty oil, I stumbled across Juno. Quite honestly it felt as though I was spreading olive oil on my face – it was SO thick! It claims to absorb quickly into the skin, but when compared to the Kiehls one (which wasn’t super fast absorbing), this took a LIFETIME. You know that feeling when your hair gets stuck to your face… it just felt horrid. I didn’t notice any real difference in my skin either. It was supposed to create a ‘dewy glow’, hydrate and bring tired skin back to its best. My skin was probably well hydrated, but I didn’t feel like it delivered on the glow that it promised. After the lack lustre performance of Juno, I can’t say I’m rushing to buy more from Sunday Riley. I was toying with the idea of replacing my Kiehls Midnight Recovery Oil with Luna, but I love it too much to risk using a crappy product.

Lidstar – Glossier

I had heard mixed reviews before I tried these, but with Glossier being such an indie brand powerhouse, I wanted to see for myself. I got two shades, in Cub and Moon and both totally lack in pigment. I understand that Glossiers products usually revolve around the ‘no makeup makeup’ look, and that’s absolutely fine… but some pigment would be nice. The swatch nicely but once you start to blend them out, they totally disappear. If you apply them directly on the eye and don’t blend them out, a weird thing happens as it dries and it completely accentuates where you have applied it (therefore RUINING your makeup). I’m really in the market for this type of product, but I guess I’ll have to keep looking!

Hyaluronic Acid – The Ordinary

I really wanted to incorporate hyaluronic acid in to my routine after reading about its hydrating benefits and had seen that The Ordinary do a version that is super cheap. In all fairness I have never tried any other hyaluronic acids to compare this to, but I didn’t like it. I’ve also read a lot of other people with the same thoughts as me on it – mainly that the serum is incredibly sticky. When I heard that this could take 4000 times its weight in water, I expected application to feel like I’d just given my skin a big glass of water. Incorrect. It felt slightly tacky afterwards and not hydrating or moisturising at all – in fact it felt like I needed to apply a moisturiser straight away afterwards to ‘fix’ my skin. I didn’t notice any difference in the appearance of my skin, and frankly I expected more!

Fix+ Goldlite – MAC

If you follow my Instagram, I posted about this the other day, but this was really disappointing for 2 reasons. 1) My skin felt much more matte than when I use the regular Fix+ (I’m not aware that this is a mattifying formula or anything) and totally lacked the glow that the usual Fix+ gives. 2) There was absolutely no glitter/gleam/glow on my skin. Even when I sprayed this on my arm, there was nothing. I’m a bit confused because this was hyped SO much, and whenever I tried to buy it before it was always sold out. So how did I not know this was going to be a disappointment?

Quick reminder that what didn’t work for me, may work for you. We might have different hair/skin types, or even preferences in the type of beauty we enjoy, and I am just stating my opinion.

Luckily for me, I had to think pretty hard about what products had disappointed me in the last 6 months or so, which means I’ve used loads of brill products recently! I hope you enjoyed this post!

Xo

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Tested: The Ordinary Coverage foundation

The Ordinary is HUGE right now!

Their amazingly skincare line is suuuuuperΒ affordable and gives you the results of a product 5 times the price. At Β£5.90, this is the cheapest foundation I’ve ever bought, so I thought I would test it out.

The ordinary foundation

If you are someone who is conscious about the brands you use, The Ordinary does not test on animals and this foundation is vegan.Β  It’s also worth mentioning that this product is also free of soy, gluten, oil, alcohol and nut free. SPF 15 is included. I’m not sure whether all of their products is free from all of these, but you can check on their website.

When I saw they had come out with two foundations (the Coverage and Serum foundations) I was a little sceptical, despite being a brand super fan. I’m not used to finding my shade in more affordable foundations and thought the shades wouldn’t be pale enough more my skin. There is a fairly wide shade and tone range for a foundation that is new to the market. According to their website, there are 3 numbered shade categories: 1 for fair to light tones, 2 for medium tones and 3 for darker tones. The second digit from 0-3 indicates the depth within each category. Then the letter indicates the undertone: P (Pink), R (Red), N (Neutral) and Y (Yellow).

img_9116It looks quite a bit darker than my skin tone here, and also pulls much warmer.

I bought the lightest shade there isΒ – 1.0 N (for very fair skin according to their website) it’s a pretty good match for my skin when blended in. In the picture above, it looks slightly darker/more orangeΒ than my ideal shade, but it’s certainly workable when used with lighter concealers. It does howeverΒ pull much warmer than I would expect from a ‘neutral’ shade, but for me that’s no issue as I like more yellow foundations to balance out the redness in my skin. I wouldn’t necessarilyΒ say this foundation is for those with ‘very fair skin’. I am certainly not paper white and this is darker than my ideal shade, so there is room to expand the shade range to fit paler people.

Despite it being the more full coverage of the two foundations (the other being the Serum foundation which is a light coverage), it’s not what I would call ‘full coverage’ at all. It’s more of a medium/buildable coverage that gives you a ‘your skin but better‘ kind of look. To get the most coverage out of it, blending in with a brush was better than with a sponge. A sponge gave a more natural coverage, which was more similar to the Serum foundation. I set this with powder and went on my merry way.

Certain products I would usually use didn’t work with this foundation. I love to use the Fenty Beauty Match Stix in Trippin’ for blush, but this just took the foundation straight off my cheek, even though I don’t apply the stick straight to the skin. I warm up the product first, and then apply it with my fingers, starting at the apple and moving it backwards towards the ear. So keep it to powder products when using this.

This foundation is definitely dry skin friendly. I have been struggling with a few dry patches around my mouth, which it didn’t highlight, and it didn’t look super dry when powder was applied.


Β Β Β Β Β  In a rush to leave the house but skin is looking good xo

If you’re going to have a fairly lazy day, then this foundation will stay pretty well. However, if you plan on being a bit more active, it will break down. I’ve tested this for aboutΒ two weeks, and it will be one of the foundations I wear regularly. However,Β I’m really not sure how great this is for long wear. I’ve worn this to work (at least 12 hours of wear)Β and the break up around my mouth is pretty bad. I walk to and from the station and get a really hot tube to work and it does break down when you get a little bit sweaty. I was basically wearing no foundation between my nose and mouth by 10am. I’m not really someone who brings their make upΒ bag wherever they go, but I do touch up my face with a concealer pen throughout the day if it’s looking a bitΒ sad. IΒ had to touch it up every time I wear it or else I look likeΒ I have a little red moustache.Β It is important to emphasise that it was only between my nose and mouth where I noticed breakdown. My cheeks and forehead stayed perfect throughout the day, which is a major plus. Also, I’ve tested my commute out on my more expensive foundations too and my Nars Sheer Glow and Charlotte Tilbury Magic foundation haven’t survived it either. So really, the fact that it breaks down is totally normal.

I’m not going to stop wearing this foundation because of the break down. It’s a great price and gives a lovely dewy finish.Β For the price that it’s at, you really can’t go wrong.Β I’d much rather wear a cheaper foundation for my day-to-day make up and save my nicer, more expensive foundations for best or when I’m not sweating it out on the tube. If they have your shade, I’d definitely give this a go. For Β£5.90, why wouldn’t you!? Good luck finding it though, it’s sold out eeeverywhere. If you can, get yourself to a Deceim store (I got mine from the Spitalfields store in London) and you can get colour matched there. If you’re feeling brave enough to guess your shade, check out ASOS, Cult Beauty, Beauty Bay or go straight to theordinary.com.

Have you tried this foundation? Let me know your thoughts!

Xo

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