Aromatherapy Associates are a brand which have always intrigued me. A natural skin and body care brand, famous for their luxury bath oils, I knew I just had to give them a try. Luckily for me, I recently won two of their products – The Revive Body Gel and their hydrating Inner Strength Soothing Face Oil. Both wonderful, luxurious products, it’s safe to say I’m now a fully fledged Aromatherapy Associates fan.
As a makeup lover, you need to invest in a good skincare routine to enable you to make the most of your makeup. What’s the point in owning tons and tons of products if you don’t look after your skin? They just won’t look good. Even if you don’t wear makeup, it’s necessary to have a good skincare routine to protect you against harsh cold winters and ageing. Since I’ve become more of a makeup devotee these last few years not only has my makeup collection grown but my skincare collection too. It’s a bit ridiculous how many products I own. But I do use most of them frequently, so it’s totally justified (or so I tell myself!). Today, I’m sharing my current favourites!
Probably my favourite part of a skincare routine. It can be so satisfying and refreshing removing all that makeup and dirt off your face! My overall favourite is the Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel, I will always rave about this. It is so worth spending more than I normally would for a cleanser (£29.50). I love using this in the mornings as it is so awakening and revitalising. It is also great at removing makeup, even stubborn mascaras. It’s a gel to oil formula and when in contact with water it creates more of a lather. It contains ingredients such as Vitamin C & E so you know your skin is getting a real treat!
A newer cleanser in my collection is Lush’s Ultrabland Cleanser. I picked this up on a whim when I went into store not long after Christmas in the hope of grabbing some sale bargains but I was too late (boo!) however I ended up purchasing this cleanser. This cleanser is a lot thicker and creamier than Oskia’s offering which is perfect for my dry skin. A little goes a long way with this cleanser and it leaves my skin feeling so soft and supple.
I’m not massively into face washes but after buying Soap & Glory’s The Whole Glam Lot before Christmas, it gave me the opportunity to try the Face Soap and Clarity Vitamin C Facial Wash. At first, I was a bit sceptical as I thought this wash contained microbeads but after a bit of investigating I found out they were actually jojoba beads. I don’t use this as much as the other two cleansers but it’s nice if I just want something quick and easy! It contains a ton of amazing ingredients such as Superfruit Yuzu which contains Vitamin C. It’s also cheap as chips so if you’re looking for something reasonably priced that does the job quickly, give this a try.
Of course, I couldn’t talk about cleansers without mentioning Bioderma. Their Micellar Water is my favourite beating the likes of Garnier to the top spot. I probably don’t use it as much as I used to but again, it’s great if you want something quick and easy to remove your makeup with.
TONERS AND EXFOLIATORS
The next step after cleansing is to go in with a toner or exfoliator. At the moment, I’m loving the Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Exfoliating Facial Pads. They work so well on my skin, reducing my blackheads significantly and making it look more radiant. I’ve nearly run out but I will definitely be repurchasing and I might even give the Extreme Night Pads a go.
I’ve always wanted to try the Pixi Glow Tonic and just recently, I’ve been giving it a whirl and now I see what the hype is all about, what an amazing product! I use this most mornings now as it really is a ‘glow giver’. It contains glycolic acid, ginseng, aloe vera and is also alcohol-free. It leaves the skin looking healthy and radiant.
For a gentle toner, I swear by No 7’s Soft and Soothed Gentle Toner. I’m on my 3rd or 4th bottle since discovering it and I don’t think I’ll ever use anything else. If you have sensitive skin, this is the perfect toner for you. It’s refreshing, hydrating and leaves my skin prepped for the next step.
SERUMS AND OILS
Since getting serious about skincare and my routine, I have tried many serums. Probably more than any other skincare product but I’ve never really had one where I thought ‘I must repurchase this’. At the moment, I’m using Avene’s Hydrance Optimale Hydrating Serum which I think is going to become a firm favourite. It’s light, gentle but really packs a punch when it comes to hydration and my skin is really lapping this stuff up. If you’ve got dry skin, do give this a try.
I stopped using facial oils for a few months, I’m not sure why. Before that, I was using Nuxe’s Huile Prodigieuse Dry Oil which was fine, it was great for my skin. However recently, I’ve been giving Caudalie’s Divine Oil a go. Like Nuxe’s offering, it’s a dry oil that can be used on the face, body and hair, but I only ever use it on the face. It contains a blend of oils such as grape and sesame which make this oil feel luxurious on the skin and leaves it feeling nourished. It’s light floral scent just makes this a lovely all round product.
MOISTURISERS AND EYE CREAMS
The last step and for us lot with dry skin probably the best part. For the day, I mainly use Superdrug’s Naturally Radiant Cream. This pot seems never ending and a little definitely goes a long way! I use the Normal/Combi version which is actually perfect for my dry skin, it’s thick enough and provides a lot of hydration and the moisture that my skin needs. It is enriched with plants such as Sugar Beet and Kiwi Fruit which provide nourishment and antioxidant protection. This cream also contains SPF15 which is always a bonus!
When I’m not using Superdrug’s Naturally Radiant Cream, I’ll opt for the Soap and Glory Speed Plump Moisturiser which is formulated for dry and dehydrated skin. A great base for makeup, it makes the skin more plump and dewy. It contains a watermelon extract which gives hydration, a marine plant said to smooth wrinkles and raspberry stem cells which help with elasticity.
In the evenings, I use the Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion + which I feel like I’ve been using forever! It is almost finished and I recommend you buy the pump version as it’s a right pain in the arse to get any product out when practically empty! After removing makeup, this is the best thing to put moisture back into my skin, it’s an incredibly thick lotion which I find too much for a morning moisturiser before makeup. My skin is left feeling soft and supple.
Lastly, I apply eye cream and for the last few months, I’ve been using the Botanics Radiant Youth Hydrating Eye Cream. It’s nothing special but it does the job just fine. I haven’t seen massive differences in the eye area but it’s definitely hydrating and makes the area look a little brighter and more awake.
I know this is a little bit late, I had planned to get this up on New Year’s Eve, but life got in the way. And hey, better late than never! I loved a lot of makeup and skincare products in 2016 but a select few favourites were constantly being used and will probably be used throughout 2017 too. I also made a lot of new beauty discoveries in 2016 and tried a lot of new brands I hadn’t used before. Here’s a roundup of my most loved beauty products from the last year..
I’ll start with skincare and my now favourite cleanser, the Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel. I bought this in the summer and have rarely opted for any other cleanser since. I’m surprised it’s not empty yet! It’s well worth the price tag, it’s light and great for removing makeup. I also love using it in the mornings as it’s so refreshing and really awakens you. I love how my skin feels and looks after removal. Clean and radiant!
I have gone through a fair few serums throughout 2016 and lately I’ve been loving Avene’s Hydrance Optimale Hydrating Serum for dry, sensitive skin. I wouldn’t say my skin is overly sensitive but it’s very dry and this has been lovely. It’s very light, soothing and as the name suggests, hydrating.
The Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Exfoliating Facial Pads have been a welcome addition to my skincare routine. I use these every morning after cleansing and they are incredible! At first, my skin was a little sensitive to them but now my skin laps it up and is left looking smooth and radiant. My blackheads are significantly less visible too.
Now onto makeup! As I mentioned in my Two Foundations To Try From L’Oreal post, I’ve been absolutely loving the Nude Magique Cushion Foundation the past few months. It gives the skin a lovely dewy glow with a light, sheer coverage. It’s compact and perfect to pop in your handbag if you need to touch up on the go.
Two brands I was introduced to in 2016 were Becca and Hourglass. I had lusted after their products for so long and finally splashed out on the Champagne Pop Shimmering Skin Perfector and Luminous Flush from the Ambient Lighting Blush range with my birthday money and I haven’t stopped reaching for them since!
Both are well worth the money. Champagne Pop is absolutely stunning and just makes your skin look flawless. Luminous Flush is beautiful and adds a nice pop of colour to the cheeks. Another highlighter I loved in 2016 was theBalm’s Mary-Lou Manizer. I don’t reach for it as much now but it’s a beautiful highlighter!
Mascara wise, I loved Clinique’s High Impact Mascara. Unfortunately, it’s dried up a bit now so I need a new one! It gave my lashes incredible volume, length, and definition.
My favourite lip products of 2016 have to be the NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams and MAC Brave Lipstick. I can’t stop wearing Brave. I have loads of lip products but for some reason, I just keep reaching for this. It’s such a wearable, day-to-day shade and it suits me to a tee.
And as for the Soft Matte Lip Creams, I also can’t get enough of these. I’m basically hooked. I have 5 at the moment, but I’m sure I’ll be buying more throughout 2017. They’re matte but comfortable on the lips and not drying in the slightest. The shade range is great and not to mention, they smell like cake. Yum.
Other favourites from 2016 include Viktor and Rolf Flowerbomb, Spectrum Collection Brushes (The Siren Smoke Set, especially), Bourjois City Radiance Foundation, No7 Soft & Soothed Toner, Lush BIG Shampoo and EOS Lip Balms.
Early last month, I celebrated my 24th birthday. As I’ve gotten older, I now receive money more than presents because I like being able to buy the things that I want so I leave the presents until Christmas time. I also think I’m pretty hard to buy for so I suppose that helps out my family and friends! So over the past four weeks, I’ve done a bit of shopping and picked up some new makeup and skincare etc. Keep on reading to see what I got!
BECCA x Jaclyn Hill Shimmering Skin Perfector in Champagne Pop | £32.00 | Link
I’ve had my eye on this beautiful highlighter since it’s release last year when every Youtuber went bonkers over it. As it was limited edition at first, I thought I would never get my hands on it plus it was always out of my budget so when my birthday came around, it was the perfect time to splurge! It’s so ruddy gorgeous and as you can see in the swatch at the bottom of this post, it’s crazy pigmented! You really have to watch you don’t go too overboard with this! I’ll be going into more detail on this pretty highlighter in an upcoming post so look out for that..
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Luminous Flush | £32.00 | Link
I finally got my hands on one of these beautiful blushes! I’ve wanted one for soo long! I was tempted to buy the palette as it had just come back in stock however I opted for just one blush in the end. Luminous Flush is gorgeous against my pale skin. It’s pigmented but as it’s a cool toned rosy pink, it suits pale skin so well. It adds just a lovely natural flush.
Stila Convertible Color Dual Lip & Cheek Cream in Lillium | £16.00 | Link
Another blush I’ve wanted for some time comes from Stila. I also like that this can be used a lip colour, although I don’t think this shade is pigmented enough for the lips. Lillium is quite a muted pink shade and whilst I haven’t used this yet, I can see by the swatch that it will look absolutely gorgeous on the cheeks. I’ve now got my eye on the shade Petunia!
L’Oreal Cushion Nude Magique Foundation | £14.99 | Link
I’ve been after a new foundation for a few weeks and thought I’d give L’Oreal’s new cushion foundation a try. I’ve been tempted by this concept since Lancome released their version last year. I haven’t given it a whirl yet but I’m excited to and once I’ve given it a real test, there will be a review up for you guys!
Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Concealer | £17.50 | Link
I’ve read great things about this concealer, I had to buy it and give it a try as I’m constantly looking for the perfect concealer.. basically, anything that can beat the coverage of Collection’s Lasting Perfection concealer! I’ve also read that it is good for dry skin, so I hope I like this! I’m looking forward to trying it out.
EOS Lip Balm in Pomegranate Raspberry | £6.50 | Link
EOS lip balms were all the rage a few years back, I’m not sure if they still are but I had to buy one when I saw my local Boots had started stocking them. They’re not the most moisturising of lip balms but I like the ease of application due to its sphere shape and the pomegranate raspberry smells so good!
NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams in Ibiza, Antwerp and Manila | £5.50 | Link
As you can see I’m a huge fan of the NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams. I already owned two of these. I just absolutely love the formula. They’re so creamy, matte but not overly drying and very long lasting! I think I’ll end up with the whole collection at some point haha. I did laugh when I realised how similar these shades were, I guess you can tell what shades of lippy I like!
Revlon Ultra HD Matte Lip Color in Devotion | £8.99 | Link
As you can probably tell already, I do love a good matte liquid lipstick. I’m building up quite the collection! Devotion is a gorgeous neutral rosy pink shade.
Oskia London Renaissance Cleansing Gel | £29.50 | Link
This cleanser by Oskia has been raved about by many of my favourite YouTubers so obviously, I had to have it! I will do a full review on it soon but it is definitely worth the hype. It’s such a lovely, light cleanser.
Bumble & Bumble Thickening Shampoo 50ml | £6.50 | Link
You may have seen me mention the R+Co Dallas Thickening Shampoo on my August Beauty Wishlist and whilst I loved it, unfortunately, SpaceNK are still awaiting stock on the full size so I can’t buy it just yet. So, I was looking around for alternatives to try and came across this by Bumble & Bumble, a brand I’ve always wanted to try. I was delighted to see they had a 50ml available rather than splurging out on the larger 250ml bottle, incase it didn’t do anything for me. I’m looking forward to giving this a try and hopefully it does the job as it’s a little bit cheaper than R+Co! Fingers crossed!
Real Techniques Setting Brush | £6.99 | Link
I’ve been meaning to buy this brush for a long time and I just remembered to add it to my basket as I was about to check out! This setting brush is great for applying highlighter and setting powder.
I can’t believe July has come to an end already. This is the month I always look forward to as it’s my birthday month and it’s completely flown by but that shouldn’t be any surprise now as 2016 is just going too fast. What is happening!? Before we know it it’ll be Christmas! Anyway, this month’s favourites are a bit of a mix between new purchases and old loves that I’ve rediscovered..