Product review: Eucerin DermoPURIFYER

Hands up if you're prone to breakouts? How about eczema? Let's face it, having the two combined is like the seventh circle of hell. You can't really wear foundation or concealer to hide the spots because then the eczema will be even more visible. The ultimate torment.

I'm going to be honest with you, I had never heard of Eucerin before, I'm a creature of habit really and probably wouldn't have tried it off my own back. However, now I've tried it, it will now be my skin care go to. Needless to say, I'm a convert.



As you may have seen from previous posts, I have tried a lot of face products and have decided to type up a review within the first week. With the exclusion of some, I have seen amazing results within the first week or so but then my skin decides to rebel. On the advice of my flatmate, I waited three weeks this time to give my skin enough time to adapt to the new product and I'm glad I did.

I have been using Eucerin Dermo PURIFYER once a day for three weeks and I haven't had a complete breakout for at least two weeks, only the odd spot here and there but they have been few and far between. This has made me a very happy bunny indeed. I still have the odd blemish here and there from past breakouts but it makes me very happy to see these are disappearing, slowly but surely. Hopefully, by this time next week they'll be gone completely!

Another reason I like the product ios because it's cruelty free, as promised on their website and various other cruelty free listings. This is very important to me and it's always a struggle to find 'rubbish skin friendly' products that haven't been tested on animals. Well done Eucerin.

The only downside isn't a major thing, rather of a personal moan. I want to have a facewash that smells nice! Obviously it's scent free to make it even kinder to your skin. I shouldn't really moan that my face doesn't smell like peaches when the product actually works I guess!

I thought this would be too expensive for me at £9+ (I try to go for the cheapes thing all the time which is probably bad), but right now it's only £6 on Escentual and it's completely worth it. I'll probably be stocking up myself on payday! Plus, I also got a bunch of extra little samplers that I still need to try!

Hastily taken desk photo...









What I'm listening to - 'Waves' by Bitter Ruin

I was talking to someone a little while ago about how apparently because we now live in a 'download generation', people rarely, if ever, listen to an album from beginning to end anymore. Think about it, when was the last time you did?Even I mainly rely on my Spotify playlists and recommendations based on my 'taste'. (Not always accurate. No Spotify, I will not be listening to My Chemical Romance, thank you very much).

However, every now and again an album is announced that takes me back to being a teenager all over again. The countdown to the release date, preordering my copy so I won't be the only one without it when I go into school on Monday and, of course, listening to it from beginning to end. On repeat.

The most recent album to make me feel this way is the anticipated first official album by Bitter Ruin, funded and backed by their fans through a Kickstarter project.



I have loved Bitter Tuin for a few years now and have seen them so many times I lost count ages ago. They bring a whole new dynamic to music that I thought was lost years ago and 'Waves' is nothing short of mesmerising.

It came out on 12th May and I can safely say I have listened to it pretty much everyday since. On the day of its release my flat mate and I were having a mutual 'this album is making me cry' moment from our different offices. It's moving in so many ways, one track will send shivers down your spine and the next will have you in tears.



If you don't know who they are, you can listen to Waves on Spotify, buy it here and buy tickets for their next show (4th June - 100 Club, London) here.

Enjoy!

What's your favourite album at the moment? 

Afternoon tea and cats - all the awesome

I have been trying to blog about this for weeks so apologies if I'm a bit behind the times!

Tea, cake and cats! Honestly, where's bad in this scenario? I'm so glad my flatmate was experiencing post Australia blues and booked us a table here AGES ago! I have wanted to go to Lady Dinah's Cat Emporium since it opened and now I know it's something that all cat lovers should experience.



You pay a £5 contribution before you go in, I know this might seem strange, but once you're in there you really understand why.

You walk through the door and you're automatically completely in love with it. I definitely was! The tiniest details from the decorations to even the Wi Fi password add the cutest touch and you automatically feel right at home. The mismatched furniture and 'grass' on tables (oh yes) makes it feel as though you've fallen down the rabbit hole - plus there are cats EVERYWHERE.





Little cat tips all around the place!



Before I get too excited about the cats, let's focus on the other important things. First of all the food, there was so much of it. Charlie and I both ordered the Ploughman's and despite how delicious it was, we were both defeated by it. Somehow though, the mythical 'dessert belly' still had room for a banoffee pie that puts mine to shame.

The Brie really didn't last long


With Jazz and blues playing in the background, it really felt as though you were lost somewhere in some forgotten place rather than the centre of London and there are boardgames everywhere just in case you get bored of the cats - obviously never going to happen.

Look at that face!
Having two hours to play with cats and drink tea is my personal idea of heaven and is just too amazing for words. Obviously they were all just attention seeking with everyone clamouring to play with them but we discovered that if you had their favourite toy, the spring, they couldn't get enough of you.

This is Petra, my favourite cat




If you haven't been, book tickets and experience it all for yourself, it really would be silly not to.

Have you ever been to Lady Dinah's?

What I Wore - White and gold

The sun's out! Isn't it exciting?!

I'm heading up to Scotland at the weekend and will have to wave good-bye to the warm weather so I may as well take advantage of it while I can. Knowing my luck it will be all rain and hail when I get back.

I never wear white as I'm really conscious of spilling things on it and that I'd look too pale. After a last minute Primark shop to find a white shirt for a party, I found this and decided it was so much better than a bog standard white shirt as there are many ways that I can wear it. Today I went for the dress look (with a mini skirt underneath so it's more suitable for work!!)

Shirt - Primark £10

I kept accessories to the minimum as I liked the simple look but chose to wear a birthday present my flatmate bought me MANY years ago. It breaks up the outfit nicely and although it's not as gold as it once was, it's still really cute.


I went for my nude heels by Melissa, they're kind of like jellies with little gold buckles and I think they make my legs look longer. A girl can dream.

Shoes - Melissa £29.99


I got mine a few years ago but you can get the white and black versions in the Melissa sale.

How do you wear white?

Emergency trip to Benefit

(Fist of all, apologies but I stupidly lost all the photos I took...)

A couple of weeks ago, I was extremely upset when I discovered a few recent purchases were part of an umbrella company that tests on animals. I'm normally quite on top of these things and had heard so many great things about this company that I was devastated.

There was only one solution to this problem. Throw everything away and go straight to Benefit!

The essentials for this trip was mostly more POREfessional and a new foundation for pale people which is always more difficult to find than you might think. Obviously, I left with a lot more than just these...

Foundation

Ever since B Never too Busy to be Beautiful sadly disappeared off the face of the planet, I have missed their Baby Doll foundation more than words can express. I've tried lots of other brands but struggled to find one to suit my skin tone but now I've found it!




Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow is my new saviour. The sales assistant asked me lots of questions before we tested a few things to find out what my perfect match would be and we both got quite excited about this one (Ivory - I'm pure 4 sure) because it blended well and you could still see my freckles! I've also noticed that over the course of the day it doesn't reach that icky flaky stage that you'll get with cheaper foundations, its stays put.


Moisturiser

If you have eczema, there's only so long you can put up with using evil, foul, tar smelling products on your face. A lot of creams for skin conditions that I have tried are too thick and tend to lead to the breakout from hell and no one wants that. I explained these skin woes to the lovely sales assistant and she gave me a trial for Total Mositure.



After a couple of weeks I would 100% recommend this for people with dry skin and eczema, it's light so you don't have to use a lot, it's nice to have something that smells good for a change and unlike a previous skin cream I have written about, it's yet to dry out my skin, Needless to say, I'll be buying some more very soon.

Blusher

Blusher frightens me but that's only because I have never been able to use it and I always end up unintenionally looking like Aunt Sally...

For those of you who are too young, this is Aunt Sally...
Because I always have bright eyes, we played with a couple of things to see what would suit my skin tone best and what wouldn't clash too much with my eye makeup and make my face look off balance. Rockateur was the overall winner.


It's just dark enough for me to experiment without looking too Aunt Sally-ish  and I love the pinkness of it which looks more natural for me.

Concealer

We all have those bad skin days and Boi-ing covers everything  so now I can't leave the house without it. You know, just in case.



ARGH Breakout!

Thanks to the delightful smog incident in London, my skin has not been coping well. It isn't exactly attractive but then I found Boo Boo Zap.



I know this post is basically me gushing about the fabulousness of Benefit and to be honest you're probably getting sick of it but Boo Boo Zap actually works. I have tried Witch hazel, tea tree oil and various face masks but after using Boo Boo Zap, my skin clears up after a couple of days and unlike many other treatments, my skin doesn't dry out and peal so I can still apply foundation without looking like I have horrible bumpy skin.

Shopping in Benefit is always a pleasure, I just love sitting down, drinking tea (did you know they have tea???) and having everything tested and even being shown how to do things, I'm still terrified of using bronzer by myself but I have been shown how to use it and that's the most important thing! Now I don't have to feel guilty about any of my make up. WIN!

What are your favourite cruelty-free products?


I didn't wear makeup...

Leaving the house without makeup isn't a done thing for me but one day I didn't have the time or energy to do it.

After I receieved some odd comments throughout the day, I was curious and braved a bare face for a couple of days to pull together a few quotes of the things that were said to (and about me). I found this interesting as they were all from women and after the success of the #nomakeupselfie I believed that women were more supportive towards the lack of war paint. Apparently not!

'Oh, are you OK?'

'You don't look very well'

'Have you always been that colour?'

'I didn't know you had freckles'

'Your eyes look different'

'She doesn't look right, should I say something?'

'You look yellow'

'I just bought this really great concealer...'

'You're looking really peaky'

'God you look tired'

'Might be time to start using an eye cream'


This is just a quick summary of some of the things that were said and obviously the freckles one is quite nice (I do like my freckles) but I'm not really a fan of the others.

What's the worse thing someone has said to you when you haven't worn makeup?

Product Review: Barry M's Royal Textured Glitter

I'm just like a magpie. The second I see something shiny I have to have a look and, more often than not, buy it. This was definitely one of those purchases because it's not like I'm short on nail polish!

Barry M's Royal Textured Glitter polishes are all beautiful. There are five shades and it was a real struggle to choose but I eventually went for Nude Duchess... mainly because the name is awesome.
Nude Duchess- £3.99

What I love most about this is that you don't need to use a lot as it gives great convereage. As I'm a glitter fiend I used two coats to go a little OTT on the sparkle and got this result.


Unlike other glitter polishes I have bought in the past, this glitter hasn't scratched away and the polish still hasn't chipped and I've had it on for nearly two weeks. Winner.

What's your favourite glitter polish?

What I wore: Gordon and Laura's wedding

At the weekend, my boyfriend's friends had a beautiful wedding and I was lucky enough to go. I'd spent a while faffing over what I was going to wear (as you can see from my previous post) and got my heart set on a beautiful Ted Baker dress. I ended up having a major 'woe is me' moment when it turned out it was far to big for me. But rather than get in a strop, I chose to take it as a blessing in disguise and went and got an amazing outfit from New Look. My hero.

I chose to stick to the pastel colours because I wanted everything to suit my skin tone nicely and I'm also trying to convince myself it's Spring. After recently discovering that  New Look now has a Petite section, I was over the moon.

After trying on various things, this turned out to be The One. I ended up getting one size too big to preserve what modesty I still have and chose to remove the belt for a more elegant look.

Skater Dress - New Look £19.99

Now, it's not exactly warm out there, is it? I knew I'd get cold so I paired the dress with this shrug from the New Look Teen Section. Turns out it wasn't quite enough because I still ended up stealing the boyfriend's jacket!

Shrug - New Look £9.99

 As the dress was lace. I didn't want to go too over the top with accessories so I just went for a headband to add a touch of sparkle.
Headband - New Look £5.99

Put it all together with my Ted Baker bag and shoes and we have:



Costing only £35.97, I don't think I can be to upset that the Ted Baker dress didn't fit me!



Oh Look, New Bag

After a pretty shoddy end to 2013, everything picked itself back up again when I landed a brand new job! What better way to celebrate than take a little trip to Ted Baker and, similarly to Rachel Green's 'I got new boots, boots', here's my 'yay, you got a new job bag'




I'm not a massive bag person as I'm sure I've mentioned before and I'll very rarely spend more than £30 on one - the rest of my money tends to go on shoes... but this was too beautiful to turn down and there's a whole range to match it from dresses to shoes so I'm pretty tempted.



It's big enough to hold all my personal and work stuff and unlike a bag of roughly the same size I bought from Zara a few months ago, it's nice and light so it doesn't give me a dead arm after about 5 minutes which is always nice. Plus there's a nice little tablet sized pocket!

What's your favourite bag?

Nailing it: Flowers and stripes tutorial

I've been having a lot of compliments about my nails recently as I've been experimenting a lot more. I bought a bunch of new tools off eBay and have been trying a different design every week! Got to love nail art Sundays.

Yesterday my friend Frankie came over and she loves my nail art so I thought I'd teach her how to do it. She is my wonderful hand model for this step by step tutorial :-)

You will need:




  1. A variety of colours! At least 6 different shades. I went for mostly pastels from Barry M
  2. A striping brush - I used a Model's Own nail art pen which has a dotting tool and a striping brush giving you the best of both worlds
  3. 2 thin nail art brushes, one should be square similar to an eyeliner brush. I got mine here from eBay
Step 1


Select your two key colours. we went for three fingers in pastel blue and two in pastel pink.

Step 2


Using your striping brush, paint thin vertical lines across the pink nails to create a candy stripe effect. I'd recommend using the side of the brush as it's thinner and as you can see from the picture, Frankie has tiny nails so it worked perfectly.

Step 3


The roses are a lot easier than they look. I promise! Using your square brush, all you need to do is blob in random places! We used the light peach for this one.

Step 4


Using the thinner brush, 'higlight' the roses using a darker shade of pink. Again, this is very easy, you don't need to overload the brush with paint. Just cover the tip and do little squiggles in the middle of the roses

Step 5


More blobbing! using the thin brush again, dab a dark shade of green around at least two edges of your roses.

Setp 6


As you did previously with the middle of the roses. Use a lighter green and either line or dot your 'leaves' to create a more 3d effect. Again, you need to use your thinnest brush. AND YOU'RE DONE! Just don't forget a top coat...


Frankie loved hers and even had a go on me to get some practice in!

Let me know if you liked this turorial and I'll do more. SEND ME REQUESTS! 

Wednesday Wishlist: Oh god, it's wedding season...

My flatmate and I have come to the realisation that we're now old enough to be experiencing wedding season for at least 10 years. This year alone we both have three weddings to go to!

The first wedding is in April and I really need to start planning outfits so here's a couple of things I have found that are right at the top of my 'need, not want' list.

Miss Selfridge -£42
As two wedding are happening in the spring/summer I figured pastels were the best choice. This is from the tiny people section from Miss Selfridge and the rose detailing is absolutely perfect. I don't tend to wear anything with quite a high neckline but as I'm covered in tattoos, it's only polite that I cover as much of them as I can.

Joy - £75
I haven't been shopping in Joy for years and I forgot how much fun everything is in there. I don't remember the last time I wore yellow but the print on this dress is wonderful and will go nicely with some wedges I have at home.

Ted Baker £169

New Look -£14.99


This is by far my favourite and we all knew Ted Baker would appear in this list somewhere. Not going to lie. Conveniently it would go perfectly with my Ted Baker shoes and bag and the cardigan from New Look will cover the tattoos and still look pretty. There's no way I'll be able to afford the dress but a girl can dream!

What's top of your wishlist at the moment?

What I've been reading: Eric

I had yet another fun adventure in Waterstones the other day. It was brilliant and it was one of the few occasions where, an hour later, I didn't end up crying on the floor surrounded by hundreds of books that I can't choose between.

I've started playing a fun game where I close my eyes and pick random books off the shelf, annoyingly all the books I picked up were things I had already read! A little frustrating. But then I saw this...



I love Terry Pratchett, he's my go to author when I need something that will guarantee a good 'LOL'. Eric is one of the Disc World adventures I haven't read yet and this version from the Unseen University collection was just too beautiful to ignore.

So far the book has been wonderful, I have caught myself laughing out loud and gaining a lot of funny looks on the Tube and I already don't want it to end. I'm going to have to collect the rest of the Unseen University additions... despite having absolutely no room left on my book shelf. Maybe another trip to Ikea is in order...

What are you reading at the moment?


Product Review: Soap and Glory

I do love Soap and Glory. To be honest the packaging excites me more than anything else. I know, I know, 'you should never judge a book by it's cover' but the quality of Soap and Glory is completely on parr with how pretty their boxes are.


After writing a post about my beauty essentials, I got some wonderful recommendations from Jurassic Panda and thought I might give Soap and Glory another go as I've been getting most of my things from Lush recently and I'm rapidly running out



Recently I have noticed that my eyes have been getting all puffy. Is this because I'm getting older or is it just because I don't sleep well? What ever the reason, an eye cream was definitely on the cards. I've always been dubious about whether eye creams actually make a difference but after using Puffy Eye Attack I am completely converted. I have only been using the cream for a week and already my dark circles are starting to disappear and even after a full blown crying fit after watching Les Mis (standard), my eyes still looked fresh the next day!

The cream absorbs quickly which means I can put on my makeup straight away, always good if I've over slept and need to rush out the door.



My other purchase is Scrubatomic. It's about time I got a good exfoliator because I have terrible skin. I suffer from breakouts of psorasis occasionally (attractive...) and it makes my face hurt and my makeup uneven. I know you're not really supposed to use exfoliators on psorasis but Scrubatomic is so mild I can get away with it pain free! It's given me a smoother complection even without makeup and it smells amazing.

do you have any more skin care favourites? Always looking for new things. 

Product review: Nivea day cream

I have reached the age where I need to start moisturising what with that aging thing and all.

I've been looking for a moisturiser for a while. Because of my anti animal testing rules I have struggled to find a nice one that's bunny friendly. But I think I have finally found it.



This Nivea day cream is perfect. It's light and absorbs quickly plus it smells amazing. It's made my skin very soft and my outbreaks are starting to disappear which is always a bonus. I just need to start remembering to use it every day! I'm rubbish.

What day cream do you use? Have you found something better?

My face!

We all have a bunch of things that we actually can't survive without. There are little things that you can make compromises for but cosmetics don't fit in to this category. Not for me anyway.



The idea of not having one of these sends me into a bit of a panic, after all I can't be seen without my face on! But, because I'm nice and to show you what a difference the ideal cosmetics make, here's a sneaky shot.

yuck. You can even see my wonky mouth
First of all there's the skin. after my recent discovery of POREfessional from Benefit, I now can't go through a day without it, it helps to even out my skin tone and hides all the icky spots. Plus it gives a perfect, smooth base for my new Clinique foundation.

At first look, I thought it was a little dark so I mix it with some moisturiser to tone it down a little and the result is a much more normal skin colour compared to my usual Morticia Addams look.



No more spots but I still have freckles :-)
For the eyes, I tend to use a lot of the same colours. I have been in love with blue eyeshadow since I was about 17 when I first started wearing make-up. for this look I used some of my favourites from Barry M. Combined with my Models Own eyeliner and They're Real mascara from Benefit, my eyes look wider and brighter. In the right light it brings out the green flecks in them.





With the lips, I'm always worried that any colour I use will make me look too pale. I love red lipstick but I'm yet to find one that suits me. Again,. the Morticia Addams look. I'm going for a happy medium with the My Treat lipstick from Benefit, it's a nice dark pink and I use it with a dark models Own lip liner to give my lips a slightly fuller look and to even out my wonky mouth.



And the end result is a much more normal face that will happily venture into the outside world.




What are your beauty essentials.