Friday, August 31, 2012

August Empties

It's hard to believe that tomorrow is the first of September, I don't know where the year has gone. I'm hopefully starting a college course next month which is super exciting. I've had bad experiences in the past with my courses, they all get cancelled before they even start, what's up with that? It's going to be so weird starting at the same time as my little brother who is like three years younger than me. We are both doing Business related courses just in different colleges so it should be a interesting month ahead for both of us indeed. Another thing I want to do during September is my theory test and finally learn how to drive for once. You guys have to hold me to this one, I always put it off for some ridiculous reason unknown to me. Well enough about what I'm getting up to during the coming month, this post is my August Empties. When I started looking through them I didn't realise that I finished so much. Does that only happen to me?

You may be wondering how I store all my empties without people in my house thinking I'm weird hoarding bottles. I use this bag I got in Forever 21 about a year ago, it was a impulse buy on my half as it's tiny and there's no way I'd use it for anything else. It's cute though and the perfect size to hide away all my empty products. This month I've finished quite a few micellar solutions, they were all a quarter full last month so it was about time I finished them. Some I've loved and others are good but not worth the excessive price tag, you'll see what I mean further down.

First I'm going to start with body products, the odd one of the group is the funny monster head. This is actually a Bath & Body Works Hand Sanitiser, that the lovely Chie sent me last year. It smells amazing like sour apple sweets. I really like it and if we had one of these stores in Ireland I'd certainly pick up some more. I have another Bath and Body Works empty in this post and that's the travel size Pink Chiffon fragrance. Oh my I adore this scent it's like nothing I've ever smelled before. Again it was a gift from Chie for my birthday back in February, I was so disappointed when I was nearly out of it. Luckily Chie offered to pick me up some products in this particular scent. I got the package in the post last week and wow I can't wait to try everything. There will be a post up very soon. I went through two more of my favourite body products during August, Kiehl's    and Soap & Glory's Breakfast Scrub. The latter is amazing and if you haven't smelled it yet, go and do it the next time your in Boots. This is like my fourth tub of this and I can't get enough of it, definitely my favourite scrub out of their range. The label melted away in the shower so that's way your currently looking at a plain white tub, it's not like this in the shops. I've had this small bottle of Creme de Corps Body Moisturiser for a while, it was pretty expensive (€19) and would of been much better value if I had of bought the bigger size. It's a heavy cream which works wonders on dry patches, leaving my skin lovely and soft. I recently bought the Creme de Corps Soy Milk and Honey Whipped Body Butter and I probably will use that up before I buy this. Out of the two I'd probably prefer my newer purchase from the brand  as it smells absolutely amazing, I featured it in my Summer series not too long ago.

Here's two not too exciting empties but I thought I'd include them anyway. On the left we have Garnier's Mineral Anti-Perspirant which I actually really liked, I don't know if it leaves your underarms feeling fresh for 48hrs as I usually use it before then but it's good. I also finished this La Senza Discover Me purse spray, I bought this years ago and it smells really beautiful. We don't have this store in Ireland anymore so I more than likely won't be getting Discover Me again for obvious reasons.

I finished up only one makeup product this month and that's Rimmel's Stay Matte powder. I've been using this so much lately, I even favour it over alot of my high end bits, it's super affordable and gives a nice finish. I actually hit pan on this a week ago and unfortunately I was out at my friend's leaving party last week and it shattered in my bag. I already bought a backup so it's all good. I've had the Kerastase Ciment Thermique for nearly a year and it worked wonders on my hair, it's a heat activated reconstructor and I used it before blow drying. I did notice my hair looking healthier after using this a few times, I'd love to repurchase it but pricewise it's a bit out of my budget at the moment. When I was in Manchester last month I picked up a Philip Kingsley Travel set which included the Elasticizer and Moisture Balancing Shampoo and Conditioner. I thought the set was pricey at £20, but then I seen this size Elasticizer retails for around €18 so I guess I did get it in the end for a decent price. I always fly through shampoos super quick so it was no wonder I finished this so soon. I can't really comment on how I felt about this product as it came in such a small tube. I'd be interested in getting the full sized just to try it out and see.

Last but not least the skincare empties as you can see I've finished quite a few products over the past month. As I said above I've been trying alot of micellar solutions, I chucked out the wipes and gone for these. I forked out the money for This Works Clean Skin 5-in-1 Water and though I was impressed this was certainly not worth €26. I don't think any cleansing water in its right mind would to be honest. There are so many cheaper alternatives out there and yes this is a lovely one but it could do with being that little affordable. Another two micellar solutions which are a bit on the cheaper side of things are the offerings from Caudalie and No7 which I both love. I've already repurchased the Caudalie Cleansing Water, it just takes my makeup off like a dream and it's not too pricey which is a plus. A product that I'm not too fussed about is the No7 Eye Makeup Remover. I use to like it a while back but it leaves my eye lids so greasy which is a nightmare if I want to apply my eyeshadow right away. I'm much prefering Vichy's Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover which I'm nearly all out of, I need to repurchase it tomorrow when I finish work. You'll probably hear about it again in my September Empties next month. Another eye makeup remover I finished this month is from Garnier, I'm a big fan of this one and it removes my eye makeup really well. If I'm running low on funds I usually pop this in my trolley but if I want to treat myself I go for Vichy's offering. I also finished two products from Liz Earle, their Deep Cleansing Mask and Gentle Exfoliator. The latter is a repurchase and even though it's not my favourite exfoliator at the moment, it gets the job done which is all you can really ask for. On the other hand I love their Deep Cleansing Mask, I've had this for ages now as I only use it on my tzone. The product itself contains manuka honey and concentrated clay which removes all nasty impurities and oil in the skin. I can vouch for this working amazingly, I see myself repurchasing it the next time I'm in Wilde & Green, I need to take a visit soon. Lastly one of the products I've been using alot over the Summer months has been refreshing sprays like Avene Eau Thermale Thermal Spring Water. These are amazing on those hot stuffy days which if I'm being honest we haven't had enough of in Ireland this Summer. Anywho I always have one of these in my bag just to refresh my skin and my makeup throughout the day. You can get them in large sizes in most stores but I think this particular size is hand bag friendly. They also last ages so there's no need for the full sized unless you want one for the house or office.

What have you finished up this month? Any products I should try?


Thursday, August 30, 2012

Summer Must Haves/Essentials #5 - My Festival Beauty Musts

With Electric Picnic just around the corner I thought I'd do a quick post touching on my festival Must Haves. I'm not lucky enough to be going myself this weekend as I'm working unfortunately. Ed Sheeran is the act I wanted to see the most, jeez he's seriously taking over the world at the moment. His album is immense and I basically have it on repeat. I can't wait to hear his collaboration with Taylor Swift, another one of my favourite artists. I haven't been to a full weekend at a music festival, I've been to like the all day concerts (Oasis in Slane) that start midday and go on til late. I remember having such an amazing time when I went but the place did get a little messy so all I can say is thank god I was in the pit. Everyone always presumes that you get pushed around in there but I seriously believe it's the safest place to be. I think they only let under 100 people if I'm wrong correct me. We usually have two major festivals in Ireland each year, Electric Picnic and Oxygen. The latter was cancelled this year, I think they were upstaged by the acts that headlined Phoenix Park so I think they threw in the the towel until next Summer.

Even though I haven't gone to a full on festival I still thought I'd show you the products I think would be needed over the weekend. I going to start off with two haircare products if Electric Picnic is anything like Oxygen your more than likely not going to get around to having a shower. There either going to be busy or plain old disgusting, I know alot of my friends avoided them. Dry Shampoo is the first product I'd recommend bringing, I know the obvious option would be Batiste but if you in anyway have a senstive scalp like me I'd go for John Frieda's Luxurious Volume Anytime Volume Refresher. I know it's a bit more pricey than Batiste, but it's also a million times better. A few sprays of this will get rid of your greasy mop and leave your hair looking gorgeous and bouncy, what more could you need. If you tend to wear your hair straight, I find John Frieda's 3 day straight really good. I'd wash my hair on the morning of the the festival before you go down, a couple of sprays of this in your hair depending on how thick it is, dry and straighten. Viola you'll look like you just walked out of the hairdresser. With me personally my hair doesn't stay straight for the full three days, it gradually goes wavy but still beautiful. At the end of the day if worse comes to worse, pack a few hair bobbins and tie up your hair, that's always my last resort. If you do decide to have a shower at the festival I wouldn't lug around lots of shower products with you, definitely stick to the basics like mini shower gels, shampoos, wipes etc. If you end up binning these for any reason it will be alright, it won't seem as if you've wasted your money. Not forgetting the item I always carry in my bag, deodorant as you never know when you might need it. My favourite is Sure Women's Bright, it's perfect for the Summer and I just love the bottle. I've also thrown in a little body spray as opposed to dragging a perfume down, these are much lighter on the skin and they come in gorgeous scents. Not to expensive either which is a definite plus in my books. A product that my family has been harping on about for years is Sudocrem. I used to think it was only them until I met my boyfriend who is a big fan of the stuff too, even though he won't admit it himself. I can totally now see why, you can use this on just about anything cut, grazes you name it. They've recently brought it out in the squeezy tube which is so much handier as it easily fits into your bag unlike the tub. Another important item I forgot to include in the picture above is a hand sanistiser, for obvious reasons if you've been to festivals before you'll know how messy they can be!

Now on to the all important part, makeup and skincare. For skincare, without a shadow of a doubt bring a micellar solution, you don't need to add water and they take off your makeup like a dream. I included my Vichy Calming Cleansing Micellar Solution in the post but seriously anyone will do. Another big one is suncare, even though our weather hasn't been the nicest at the moment the sun is still beneath the clouds. I've been using Vichy's Mattifying Face Fluid SPF50 throughout the Summer and I think it's brilliant. It has such high protection and it dries matte (perfect for oily/combination skin) so my makeup glides on over it like a dream. For foundation I've chosen Vichy Dermablend, it's a good one for full coverage that doesn't look cakey in the slightest. If your someone who prefers the natural look I've also thrown in a BB cream, Garniers offering for oily/combination is fantastic and still has nice coverage. I also set my foundations/BB creams with powder, I've been loving Rimmel's Stay Matte in Translucent which is a big favourite among beauty bloggers. I actually smashed mine on a night out recently so I'll have to pick one up soon. I'd keep it pretty simple with blush at a festival and I in seriousness I don't think you'd need more than one, Revlon's Photo Ready Cream Blush in Pinched, a beautiful peach shade that would go with any look. Now for my favourite part the eyes, the MUA Undressed palette is such a good purchase for weekends away like Electric Picnic as it's not too pricey and it has such an amazing range of shades. I never forget my eyeshadow primer, I'm not too gone on Sin from Urban Decay which is pictured. I prefer the original primer as it drys clear, I ran out of mine so I need to get it tomorrow when I get paid. If you like big and bold lashes like me, Maybelline Colossal Volum' Express has been my most reached for mascara in recent weeks. I have straight lashes that lack that bit of bounce but this has been perfect in giving them that extra boost. It also comes in a waterproof version which I think is essential for any music festival. I'm keeping it simple featuring only one lip product, Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector in 03 which is a gorgeous nude shade that would go really well with any makeup look. I got this little mini tube in a Christmas set last year, I'm surprised it's last so long to be honest, I will have to treat myself to the full sized tube when I run out.

Have you been to a music festival this Summer? Which products made it into your makeup bag?


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Vaseline Limited Edition Lip Therapy Blogger Challenge

Over the past few weeks a couple of bloggers and myself took part in a challenge. We were sent out a plain tin of Vaseline Lip Therapy with a mystery limited edition flavour. Our mission if we chose to accept, was to figure out what the flavour was exactly. This was harder than I was expecting it to be, after looking over the hints for a good part of a week I finally came up with my answer. Sparkling Pink Champagne, here's how I came up this. Firstly I'll show you the clues we were all given.

candle=sparkling, a balloon=pink and champagne truffles=champagne

I love this new flavour, it tastes super nice like pink grapefruit, it's definitely up there with my favourite Vaseline Rose Lip Therapy. I'm sure it will go down a treat when it's launched, sure everyone likes a bit of bubbly now and again.The challenge wasn't over yet, our next mission was to design and decorate our own tin. I was really excited about this aspect of the challenge as it's something I've never done before. When it came to designing my tin, I wanted it to look like something I'd buy myself if I seen it sitting on a shelf. Along with the tin I got sent alot of little cute decorations to use. First I decided to use both pink and gold glitter, I mixed them together to get a nice rose gold shade which I put all over the centre of the lid. I love this colour, must admit I'm a bit obessed with it at the moment. Around the edges I used a couple of pink hearts of different shades, I thought they were so pretty and I didn't want to leave them out. Along with bright pink star in the center, I put tiny little beads in each mini heart. Bordering the tin I used an assortment of pink and silver gems to finish the design. What do you guys think??

That's not all I have to tell you guys, if I guessed the flavour correctly and my design skills wow the Vaseline folk, not only do I win a trip to Paris, I also get the same trip to give away to one of you lucky people. I have only been to this beautiful city once back in 2003, which seems like years ago now so it would be so amazing to get the opportunity to go again. What's even better is being able to give one away to you guys, you are all lovely and so supportive. If you would like to get your hands on this new Limited Edition Vaseline Lip Therapy they launch in a weeks time (5th September) in Selfridges. At £3.49 you can't really go wrong, they last forever and I always have one in my handbag. If you want to hear more about Vaseline and their new releases you can check out their facebook page here.

What new flavour would you like to see Vaseline Lip Therapy come out with next?


Monday, August 27, 2012

Kiehl's Launch in Arnotts

This morning I braved the horrible weather to attend the launch of the Kiehl's boutique in Arnotts, their first Irish department store home. Being a brand that I love, I was super excited to get invited to this event. I'm a big fan of their Creme De Corps Whipped Soy & Honey Souffle. I've been using it none stop since I bought the stuff and it smells amazing. I featured it one of my Summer Must Haves/Essentials posts a while back if you want to see what the product is like.The location of their boutique is great, it's just as you walk into the Arnotts Beauty Hall on the right, you can't miss it. We were welcomed into the store at half  8 and greeted by the lovely counter manager Donna, who knew her stuff about each and every product. I only found out today that Kiehl's have their own recycling program, if you bring back empty products to the store you get stamps on a card. After your first two stamps you get a luxury sample and if you fill up the card you get a full sized cleanser which is pretty sweet in my opinion. I don't know why I'm only finding out about these amazing programs now. Kiehl's also have a "try before you buy" policy which means if your not sure about the product while your in store they'll give you a sample to take home. I think this is a super idea as I hate nothing more than rushing into purchase which leads me onto their 100% money back guarantee. Kiehl's put a lot of trust into their products and so they should, I've bought may products from the brand and I've never been left disappointed. On the other hand if you haven't gotten on well with the product you can bring it back to the store which is a policy that not many stores have. After chatting to Donna about the products we went up and had breakfast in Clodagh's Kitchen which is a gorgeous restaurant that offers the most amazing handmade food. There was a choice between scones and croissants with yummy homemade jam, I decided to be bold and had the latter which taste so good.

After having some light breakfast I went back downstairs to the Kiehl's boutique, where Donna gave me a touch consultation which I found very interesting. I was recommended quite a few products from their range so I can't wait to pop in after I get paid. I already have my eye on the Midnight Recovery Concentrate and Eye Cream, they both sound amazing. When I was working in Molton Brown, one of the girls in Kiehl's across the way told me how Lea Michele came into their store and bought two bottles of this when the Glee Tour came to Ireland. If it's good enough for her it's good enough for me, I doubt I'd have the funds for two bottles though.

Is Kiehl's a brand your familiar with? What products have you tried?


Saturday, August 25, 2012

My Current Eye Makeup Removers

After ditching face wipes a while ago, I've been trying alot of different eye makeup removers. Some have been great and others not so much which is the case with just about any product I guess. I have quite sensitive eyes, they've been watering so much at the moment, resulting in my makeup looking a complete mess. The thing that aggravates my peepers the most is when other people do my makeup. Last week I was at a Tom Ford counter looking around at their products, which are unbelievably expensive but I would love to add one of their eyeshadow palette to my collection. One of the makeup artists said I had such lovely long lashes and did I want to try their mascara, I really should of said no. I came away from the counter with my eyes looking scarily blood shot and watering. I met my boyfriend outside and he had to get me tissues from Centra, embarrassing I know. I don't know how my eyes have become so sensitive all of a sudden as this has never been the case before now. I think maybe it started back when I was using face wipes, I'm not too sure if they would have a major effect on my eyes like this though. When I'm out looking for a eye makeup remover in stores I always go for ones that are marketed towards people with sensitive eyes.

I've been using two for the past while and I thought I'd tell you my thoughts. Both products are for sensitive eyes and they have dual action formulas, meaning you have to shake them up before you use them. First up is No7's Beautiful Skin Eye Makeup Remover, it must be said their products can be a bit hit and miss at times. I bought some bit from their skincare range back when they launched their new packaging and I didn't get on with the products at all. I ended up giving the day/night moisturiser to my Sister liked it, so at least it made someone happy. I must admit I don't particularly like the new eye makeup remover packaging, the old one came with a pump so I didn't feel as if I was wasting any product. With this bottle, there's no dispenser so you literally have to pour it on to a cotton pad. This is fine with me, but you end up losing so much product as the opening is huge. I really don't see why they didn't include a pump, it was needed. When I'm rushing home from work to go on a night, I always remove my makeup and redo it, with this eye makeup remover I feel like I've used up so much after doing this. That said the product itself removes eye makeup really well, but as it is a dual action product it does leave that oily film on your skin after use which takes for ages to sink in. If your in a rush and need to do your makeup in a hurry this isn't something you need. With the nifty No7 vouchers, this product comes to around the €4/€5 which isn't the worst for this size eye makeup remover, I just wish it came with a pump it would be so much easier to use. I will be using this up but I won't be repurchasing it again I'm afraid. My favourite of the two is Vichy's Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover for sensitive eyes*. I'm lucky to have tried alot of amazing bits from this brand and I've never been left disappointed. Their waterproof eye makeup remover removes even the most stubborn mascara, indeed I'm talking about Benefit's They're Real. That mascara is amazing, but boy is it a nightmare to get off your lashes. As this is a bi-phase formula, you shake it to activate the ingredients. Vichy is a brand that has alot of scientific research behind their range, this is the brands first waterproof eye makeup remover that limits the loss of eyelashes. The product opening is much smaller so I don't feel at all wasteful with this one. This one doesn't leave your eyelids feeling oily so you can apply your eye makeup right away.The Vichy offering may be a little bit on the pricey side at €13.50 but you do get 50mls more. I'm nearly all out of mine unfortunately, I can see myself popping into the shops on pay day next week and picking up another.

Have you tried any products from these brands?


Friday, August 24, 2012

New Lush Face Mask

What do five Lush empties get you, surprisingly one of their face masks. I've been using products from this brand since before I started blogging. My Auntie Val first introduced me to them and ever since I've been in love with their goodies. I was surprised that I didn't know that you could bring back empties, I would of had alot of free face masks by now if I did. I've one tried one so far, Brazened Honey and I loved it. Here's the pots I used up, you probably have already seen them in past empties posts.

I have a tonne of Lush empties at home but I wasn't a 100% percent certain how their policy worked so I decided to take six pots in with me to start. It turns out you can bring back any empties, even mini sizes from gift sets but you can't bring back sample sizes, which would seem pretty obvious. I actually went to the store on Wednesday and they were all out of face masks, shocking I know. Everyone must be giving themselves a little pampering with Lush face masks it seems. They said I could leave all my empty pots there if I wanted which was so nice of them. This was the handiest option for me as the weather hasn't been the best at present in Dublin, the last thing I wanted to do was to drag them around town in the rain. Today I popped back in to the store and thankfully the had the full range of masks back in stock. The sales assistant who was looking after me was so lovely, she knew everything about the masks and went into depth about each one. She definitely knew her products, we finally narrowed my choices down to two masks, Love Lettuce and BB Seaweed. I finally decided on the latter, which I haven't heard too much about but I can't wait to see how I get on with it. This mask is said to give a deep cleanse so it's good if you've been out in the elements (RAIN) so I thought it was a great one to try next. I've seen alot of Love Lettuce reviews so I'm going to pick that up on my next trip to Lush.

Have you tried Lush face masks? What's your favourite?


Thursday, August 23, 2012

Wish I Never Bought It!! #4 - Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye Cream

I'm not one for using eye creams, they have never been a part of my daily skincare routine. At 22, I thought it was about time I started using them, as they say it's never too early to start. When I was in Brown Thomas a while ago I  wanted to pick up their Even Skintone Ilumminator serum, it was in a set with two sample sized products, their  Day Wear Anti-Oxidant mosturiser and Night Repair cream eye. Seeing as the samples were quite generous I decided to buy it, surely there's no better way to start using eyecream then by trying a eye product I've heard such great things about. I couldn't be more wrong, this Advanced Night Repair Eye Cream was a complete and other nightmare for me. I can't fault the other products, as I've yet to try the moisturiser and I've been getting on pretty well with the Even Skintone serum thus far.

At 5ml, the Advanced Night Repair Eye Cream mini was the perfect size for me to get a clear idea of what the product was like. I've had this for quite a while but I only got around to using it on Tuesday night, looking back now I WISH I never had. Having worked in a skincare company for a while I know the right way to apply eye cream, steer clear of the soft skin around your eye and using your ring finger dot it on your socket bone and gently massage in. I learnt that if you put it on that soft bit of skin it sinks right in, which results in puffy eyes. Not a look I'd want to go for at all. Now back to my experience with this product, basically I applied this and after a few minutes something didn't feel quite right. My skin was burning so of course I panicked, some of you may of noticed my tweets on Tuesday night. I looked in the mirror, no joke I had a big red half circle under both eyes and boy was this painful. The lovely Sue tweeted me and told me to slap on some aloe vera, thankfully come the next day the swelling had disappeared which I couldn't be happier about. I just got such a fright and I thought it was going to stay like that for ages. I never tend to get allergic reactions so I don't know how my skin reacted so badly to this product. Even though I heard so many amazing things about this stuff through other blogs, it will certainly teach me to be more careful and do more research in the the future before using products on my skin. I was so disappointed with this product I'm going to throw it away, I wouldn't want to give it to anyone else just in case they had the same sort of reaction. Thank god I didn't buy the full sized tub it would of been such a waste. I'll be laying off eye creams for a while now but I'm sure I'll be on the lookout for a new one shortly.

What eye creams do you highly rate? Have you tried Estée Lauder's Advanced Night Repair Eye cream?


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The Body Shop Deluxe Body Butter Tin

While I was in Manchester last month I did a hell of alot of shopping. I was going to do a big haul post showing you guys what I bought and what not but in the end I decided not to. I didn't want to be bombarding you with picture after picture of stuff I got, I know some may find it a little boring. I'd much prefer to do reviews on the things I love as it means I can give a more indepth view on the product which I can't really do in a haul.

One of the purchases I was most excited about was this gift set from The Body Shop. I went to the store in the Trafford Centre but there are tonnes dotted all over Manchester. I was drawn towards this particular gift set right away as not only is it really great value but I also got to choose what I wanted in it. I got to pick any three body butters I wanted out of the range and they put them all into this gorgeous gold metal tin. I don't know if this was a year round offer or not but in my opinion it's definitely worth checking out. I've never seen it in Dublin so it may just be a special promotion in the English stores. There were also mini body butters available in a smaller tin which was so cute. I decided on the bigger tin in the end, 3 body butters for £20 how could you wrong. The only problem I had was fitting it into my suitcase coming home. Before my Mom left for Dublin she told me to leave it in the hotel, could I ever? No is the right answer, I just think it's such a handy size tin especially great for holding these body butters.

You may be wondering what body butters I got, Mango, Pink Grapefruit and Shea made up my three. Two of which have the new packaging which looks lovely. I like how it shows a picture of the key ingredient in the body butter. All the old body butters had so much writing on the lids which then in turn looked very cluttered. There's neat writing around the sides of the new tub saying what skin type it's for and the scent which is a nicer change. Out of the three I bought, Mango and Shea are my favourites, I really can't decide which one I like more. I've heard that the Body Shop are bringing out a new Peach range, I love anything that has this scent so I can't wait to try some bits from the range when it's out.

What's your favourite body butter scent? Do you like the new packaging?


Sunday, August 19, 2012

Summer Must Haves/Essentials #4 - Fragrances

For me, Summer is the best time of the year to experiment with new fragrances. I've welcomed a couple of new ones into my collection this year. Along with one old favourite, I have four fragrances in all that I've been loving over the last few months. I'm big into my scents and love discovering new ones but downright useless at explaining what there like so bare with me on that.

I thought I'd start off with my old favourite, YSL Elle Summer Edition (2011), I've had this fragrance for a year now and I'm in love with it. The brand releases Summer Editions every year I'm pretty sure the scent stays the same, the packaging itself is the only thing that changes. I've tried YSL's original Elle fragrance before and to be quite honest I much prefer this. It has a lighter scent which can be worn anytime of year especially during the Summer months. At 90ml, the bottle is huge, no wonder it took me over a year to finish. I still have a decent amount left but I never tend to bring the bottle out in my bag, it would take up far too much space. For problems like this I use my handy Travalo, which has been a lifesaver when I'm going on holidays or when I don't want to be carting around enormous fragrances. Not that it's a bad thing when you get a 90ml fragrance for such a good price, I think this was around the €50 mark. One of my favourites from the bunch I have chosen is Roger & Gallet's Sublime Or Fresh Fragrant Water*. I've given this alot of love over the Summer, as you all know I adore citrus scents so this is certainly a winner there. Besides that it also have a lovely subtle gold shimmer which looks amazing over tan. The bottle design is beautiful which is another must for me, I'm like a magpie I'm attracted to pretty things. Unless they smell amazing then I don't really care all too much. This also comes in a body creme if that's more your thing, they both have the same gorgeous scent so you won't be missing out.

Having bought these two whilst on holiday, they are the latest additions to my fragrance collection. I'm in love with them both so they had to be included in this post. First up is Taylor Swift's Wonderstruck, I've wanted this ever since it was released in the States. I'm such a big fan of hers, I've seen her twice in concert already. Both times Paddy was dragged along with me but he enjoyed the concert, Taylor Swift puts on the most amazing stage productions that your left enchanted by. We are so far behind in Ireland, Wonderstruck was only released in stores in July which is a bit of a joke. I was lucky because the lovely Chie (MakeupLand2011) sent me the rollerball of this in one of our recent swaps. I fell in love with Wonderstruck instantly, it's such a nice sweet floral scent, how could anyone not like it. Another thing I adore is the pretty purple bottle, it's like nothing in my collection. I saw online recently that Taylor Swift is bringing out a new fragrance, Wonderstruck Enchanted. I know I will be waiting a while to get my hands on this, but it will definitely be worth it. My first ever Jo Malone fragrance was my biggest splurge back when I went to Manchester. I bought this fragrance before I even left Dublin, Jo Malone have a standalone store in Terminal 2. Taking a visit there was on my list of things to do in Terminal 2, their fragrances can be pretty expensive here, the 30ml handbag size can set you back €50. I've wanted one for a while so when I seen they were €37 in Dublin Airport, I couldn't say no. I chose their Nectarine Blossom & Honey Cologne which is also the scent I've been lusting after for ages. The lady was so nice at the counter, she knew it was for me and she still wrapped it up perfectly. A nice surprise for myself! The fragrance itself is a nice mix of sweet and fruity notes, everytime I use this I smell something different, now I get a peachy scent. That's probably why I was drawn to this in the first place, I love peaches. This fragrance does last pretty much all day long so I can't fault it at all. I would probably use this everyday if I could, but seeing as it's a bit on the pricier side of things, I'll be using this on special occasions. My Mom is going away in September and I already know what one I'd like her to pick up for me, English Pear & Freesia. It's my second choice out of their  vast range of scents. I need to stop this love affair with expensive fragrances or I will be broke much sooner than I think.

What has been your favourite fragrances this Summer?


Friday, August 17, 2012

Random Bits and Pieces for my Room

Having a average size room like mine means if you don't clean it regularly it ends up looking quite a mess. I had a massive clearout recently, first the clothes went followed swiftly by lots of makeup products I haven't been getting much use out of. Both went to good homes, the latter going to my friends who couldn't be happier. Now that my room is looking all spruced up and clutter free, I've been looking out for nice unusual bits to put on empty shelves. If you know where to look it's easy to find nice things, I figured this out quite fast. I bought most of the stuff in this post in Meadows & Byrne and Moss Cottage. The latter is one of my favourite shops to go to, there are always gorgeous one off vintage bits which I love.

I've been going through a bit of a phase where I just buy things when I like the look of them. I may not know what I'm going to do with them at the time of purchase but in the end I always find some use for them. That can be said for two out of the four purchases, on the bottom left hand side you can see the set of five mini vintage glasses. At €14.95 for the whole lot, it wasn't the worst price imaginable. When I seen them at first in Moss Cottage I enquired about the "five egg cups", I was told to my embarrassment they were infact shot glasses. Can you tell I literally never drink? Again I bought the pink and orange glasses on a whim but I know what I'll be using these for. I was thinking of maybe putting them on my bedside to store my lipbalms and eyecreams I use at night. The other two items in this picture were bought in Meadows & Byrne in Dun Laoighre, I had never been to this shop previously but I'll be certainly going back again soon. I wanted to buy a pretty notebook to jot blog stuff in and I thought this one would be perfect. For €4.95 I couldn't really go wrong, it has lined paper also which is a must for me. For some reason I can never write on plain old blank paper, it just doesn't feel right. The Avoca soap is the odd one out, I didn't really need it to be perfectly honest. Paddy was telling me how nice it smelt the whole time I was in the shop, of course in the end I bought. I wasn't too happy that it was the same price as the notebook.

Here are some storage pieces I bought a while ago now. I just thought I'd include them in the post to show you what I've been using them for. In the top pictures are two jars I got in Moss Cottage, I actually picked up two more larger jars as they as are so handy to store stuff. I've been putting products that I'm using constantly at the moment (Revlon Kissable Balm Stains) in these and also bits that I'm hoping to review soon. My favourite purchase for a long time has been this gorgeous shelf from Urban Outfitters. The minute I seen it I fell in love, I knew it would look perfect in my room and fit in nicely with everything. I've been using it to store my mini Laura Mercier Body Souffles and random perfumes. I'm glad I purchased this gem, it has definitely made more space on my shelves while still looking neat and tidy.

Where do you pick up your storage bits for your room?


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Radox Brazilian Fusion

There's always Radox products in my shower at all times, from my Mom to my brother everyone has their favourite product from the brand. Mine is their amazing Shower Smoothies, Tropical Tranquility in particular, it smells of coconut so it was always going to be a winner with me. After a busy day I like nothing more than going home and having a relaxing shower.Yes I'm one of the small percentage of people who don't have a bath in their houses. It's not an issue as there are so many nice shower products on the market, though I would love to be able to buy Lush bath bombs now and again.

Radox's Brazilian Fusion* is the brands Limited Edition Summer offering, and it smells so good. It comes in a shower gel and bath soak so there is definitely something for everyones tastes. With a scent that reminds me of holidays, how couldn't I possibly like this. I've been using this most mornings before work if I get up early enough, as it has one of those scents that instantly wakes you up. It contains an exotic blend of dragon fruit and camu camu berry, I had never heard of the latter before but apparently it's found in the Amazonian Rainforest. Having left this in my shower, I went back today to see that someone was after using it. The culprit this time was Dad, who absolutely loves this product and said how much he liked the smell. Another thing I like about this product is the packaging, most Radox shower gels have the pull up hooks which are so handy for the gym or for the shower shelve. I can see Radox's Brazilian Fusion Shower Therapy* going pretty fast as everyone in the family likes this one. I think I may need to stop leaving my products in the shower.

Do you like Radox? What product have you tried from the brand?


Sunday, August 12, 2012

MUA Going For Gold Palette

Like alot of people my eyes have been glued to the telly watching the games for the past few weeks. My favourite sports to watch were the Athletics, Boxing and Swimming. I think this is the only year I've actually watched the Games as much as I have. I was lucky enough to attend a Team GB football match while I was in Manchester last month and the atmosphere was intense. It's something I'll remember for a long time. With the closing ceremony of the Olympics on tonight, I thought it was about time I did a post featuring this gorgeous palette. Inspired by the London Olympics, MUA's Going For Gold palette* contains twelve eyeshadows in a range of gold, silvers and bronze shades. Different to other MUA palettes, the shadow pans are square and not circular which makes the amount of product you get a bit bigger.

At first I wasn't too sure if this palette was for me. It contains some eyeshadows that I wouldn't usually wear on my eyes but surprise surprise some of them actually worked. All the eyeshadows are well pigmented bar the top and bottom two on the far left. I had to heavily swatch them both so you could even see them in the photos above. Don't let these two eyeshadow put you off as it's actually a gorgeous palette that I myself have been more than impressed with. At first I was scared that the two vibrant gold shades would look a right mess on me but they blend beautifully on the eye lid, so I couldn't be happier with them both. My two favourite eyeshadows from the palette are on the bottom row, second shades to the left and right. I have been using them both alot, the light shimmery gold on the lid with the bronze in the crease, they make a gorgeous everyday look. I wouldn't choose this over Heaven & Earth or Undressed, but it's still a lovely addition to their range. I do think this was another wonderful idea from MUA and like the other palettes at £4 you can't go wrong at all. As far as I know Going For Gold is Limited Edition so snatch it up while you still can.

Will you be trying the Going For Gold palette?


Diet Coke By Jean Paul Gaultier Tour

I'm a big music lover, so when I was asked to DJ at the Diet Coke Jean Paul Gaultier Tour Bus on Saturday I jumped at the opportunity. There was numerous stops all over Ireland on the tour, with Dun Laoighre being the last. I was lucky enough to go along to the launch of the tour bus last month with my friend Sinead, so I had a good idea of what the layout was going to be like. The weather couldn't of been nicer on the day the sun was shining down which made for a lovely Summer atmosphere. I love Dun Laoighre as you could probably tell from lots of my vlog style posts, I'm always out there so it was nice that it took place on the East pier. When I first was asked to DJ this event the first person I thought of was my brother Ger, he's going to be doing a Music Production course in college in September so I knew it would be his sort of thing. I'm glad I brought him along with me as he knew exactly what he was doing, even though I knew the song choices I chose were probably not his cup of tea. He's more of a Crass and The Sex Pistols kind of guy and I put One Direction and Rihanna on the CD, so you can understand why it wasn't his sort of music. It wasn't an issue in the end as Ger had such a blast and even ended up singing along to some of the tunes himself. Typical me I left it kind of last minute making the set music on Friday night, so I was happy everything went off without a glitch. All the songs I put on the CD were songs that I love and listen to all the time on my Ipod, with some new stuff in there also. One of my favourite songs of the moment is Marina & the Diamonds Primadonna, what a song I love it. I may have to treat myself to her new album, I loved the first so much and it was constantly on repeat on my Ipod. I took only a few pictures on the day as Ger isn't the most photogenic person in the world.


Thursday, August 9, 2012

Slimming World Update #4

There will be a slight interuption to my regular beauty posts for me to bring to you my fourth Slimming World Update. I know it's hard to believe I'm onto my fifth month of this amazing program, seriously where has the time gone?! It feels like yesterday when I was writing my last update for you guys. Before I start rambling on about how I got on over the last few weeks, I just want to thank you all. Over my past three Slimming World posts your comments have meant the world to me. Since I started four months ago I've only told a handful of people about this program, so I was a bit hesitant to put it online of all places. After weighing up the pros and cons for what felt like an eternity I finally decided to start doing these updates. From the bottom of my heart I'm so glad I did in the end, for people who don't know me personally you all have been so supportive it's quite overwhelming. At recent events I've been to other beauty bloggers have commented on how well I look and for people who only know me through my blog to say this is so nice.

You'll be probably wondering how I did this month. Well firstly I wouldn't really call it a month as I was away so I only managed to go to three meetings. At the last weigh in before I went on holidays, I lost a half stone which I was in shock about. It's the most I've ever lost in a week since I started the program. To say I was surprised is the understatement of the year as I have no idea how I did it. I was kind of worried before going to Manchester as I wasn't too sure how things would fare over there. In my opinion when you start a weight loss program you get into a routine, you know where to buy your healthy foods and places to eat out in. In Manchester it was totally different as I don't really know the place too well. In the end it couldn't of gone better then it went, there was so shops that stocked bits and pieces I like so it wasn't a big issue. Not going to lie I did have the odd treat here and with my Mom. I wish we had a Spud U Like in Dublin, that place is so good if you ever go get the chicken and baby potato salad it's amazing. In the two weeks since I've got home I've lost a further four and a half pound, eleven and a half pound in total which I'm over the moon about. If someone told me at the beginning of the year that I was going to lose this weight I'd probably of laughed at them. I'm now only a half a pound away from 4st so I should hopefully get my next sticker by Tuesday. Last weekend I raided my wardrobe and cleared out the whole thing, it was crazy looking at the amount of clothes that are too big for me now. I gave them all to charity so hopefully someone out there will be happy with them. During the month I've bought some gorgeous new clothes too, my prized new purchase is my green parka (think Liam Gallagher style) I love it so I've been certainly getting a lot of wear out of it. I'll have to do a fashion style post soon and show you guys. Let me know if it's something you'd like to see.

Until the next update,


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Summer Must Haves/Essentials #3 - My Saviours for Dry Skin

The weather has been quite changeable in Ireland lately as a result my skin hasn't been the best. It's been horribly dry on my elbows, legs and arms. To try to combat this I've been switching between two body moisturisers. I've only got into using body creams as of late, don't get me wrong I've used them before but not as regularly as I do now.

One of the products that I'm going talk a bit more about was already featured in my July Favourites. I'm going to start off with the other body moisturiser I've been loving this month and that's Yes to Carrots Intense Softening Body Lotion for  extra-dry skin*. I wouldn't be familiar with many products from this brand as I've never tried them before. I've heard pretty good things about the range from my Nana, she's absolutely in love with their products. She a big fan of their cleanser and day/night moisturisers from the line. The Yes to.. brand have lots of different lines like Cucumber, Tomato and Blueberries which all target different skin types e.g. oily, dry etc. I really want to try the Tomato range but I haven't seen it anywhere in Dublin which is odd as they stock everything else. As my first product the Intense Softening Body Lotion has impressed me considerably. It comes in a 170g tube which is huge and as it's mainly for problem dry areas this is sure to last ages. The product itself is quite thick so I only take the tiniest bit, I've been using this mostly on my elbow. I had psoriasis a couple of years ago and that part of my body still tend to get dry from it and this has been helping it alot. Alot of people will be happy to hear that this product is 99% Natural and contains no SLS or Petroleum, nothing nasty at all insight. After using this on my skin, it was left feeling lovely and soft even though it is an intense lotion it does dry into your skin fairly quick which gets major brownie points with me. I always see the Yes to Carrot range on special so I'm pretty sure you can get this product for in and around the €7/€8 mark which for me is great value as it's such a big tube. My other skin saviour was featured in my July favourites post. At €53 for 340g, Kiehl's Soy Milk & Honey Whipped Body Butter is alot more on the expensive side of things. I'd been wanting to get this for a while before I caved in and finally bought it. The Kiehl's staff in my local store Dundrum really know there stuff so I was pleased when I was buying it in the end as it was definitely what I was looking for. There was a 20% off event on aswell when I bought this so the product was reduced for the day to €42.40 which certainly helped me make my decision. Being from the Creme De Corps line, I had high hopes for Soy Milk & Honey Whipped Body Butter. I'd tried the original cult body and fell in love with it right away so this product had to hit a high note with me. In the end I'm so happy I bought this as it's such a nice treat for my skin. It's a thick yellow cream that smells absolutely heavenly I adore the scent I could sit here and smell it as I write this post no problem. I've been using this alot since I bought it, with the body butter itself being so thick I only need a small amount as a little bit spreads over the skin alot. This means that  the tub (which is huge by the way) is still pretty much full, it seriously looks like I've used hardly any. When applying this whipped butter be warned it does take that little bit longer to seek in but once it does it leaves your skin smelling yummy and feeling hydrated. All in all I've enjoyed using both these products, if your looking for a bargain I'd definitely go for the Yes to Carrot offering and if you want to go that extra mile, treat yourself at payday to the luxurious Kiehl's Whipped Body Butter, you won't regret it. If you don't want to fork out on this giant tub there's also a smaller one to choose from, I'm not too sure of the price off the top of my head but from what I can remember it's not considerably cheaper.

Have you tried anything from either of these brands? What are your dry skin saviours?


Monday, August 6, 2012

July Favourites

I don't have too many favourites to show you from July as I was so busy during the month with my trip and the like. I know this post is going up a tad late but I thought you guys would still like to see what I've been liking lately. All the products I'm going to mention are new finds for me par one which is an old favourite of mine.

Here are three makeup products that I've been loving during the month of July. They are all new finds for me, two of which I brought to Manchester with me. I was glad I brought Revlon's Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain with me as I ended up using it constantly. I have the shade Honey which is a gorgeous everyday shades that is easy to pull off. I also found this product to be quite moisturising aswell which is definitely a positive as I get very dry lips during the Summer. Another product I brought to Manchester with me is MUA's Undressed palette*. There are twelve lovely shades which were perfect for daytime and nighttime looks. I brought two eyeshadow palettes on my trip but I only ended up using this one for the duration. I already did a full review on Undressed while I was on holidays which you can see here. Lastly my newest find was Maybelline's Colossal Volum' Express mascara, it's amazing. I'm a big fan of mascaras from this brand so I was surprised I hadn't tried this one before now. It was half price when I bought it, at €6 I couldn't complain. It has a ginormous brush which coats all my lashes leaving them looking big and bold, without clumping. I'm going to repurchase this again when I run out.

I'm a big fan of Kiehl's and I've gotten on well with the majority of products I bought from them in the past. I was pondering whether to buy their Soy Milk & Honey Whipped Body Butter for a while as it's expensive but I'm glad I caved in the end. This is one of the nicest body butters I've tried, it's very thick but a little bit goes a long way as it spreads alot. The product itself leaves my skin feeling so soft. Did I mention how lovely this smells? The next time your in Kiehl's you have to give it a whiff it has the nicest sweet scent. Onto my haircare favourite of this month, TRESemme Keratin Smooth Treatment Masque. I have quite damaged hair from years of straightening it to bits, it just looks so frizzy and I have the work scraggly ends you have ever seen. I've been using this masque twice a week in my hair and it literally works miracles. It leaves my hair looking healthy and sleek with no frizz in sight. I really want to pick up some more products from the Keratin Smooth range as I've gotten on so well with this. Another product I've been loving this month is Korres Guava Showergel, the only way I can describe this product is to say it smells like holidays and that's good enough for me. I have a mini bottle but I know you can get this in a large size too so don't be suprised if you see this in a haul in the near future. My last July favourite is YSL Elle, this is their special edition fragrance that comes out for the Summer. I've had this particular bottle for nearly a year now and I have a little less than a half a bottle left so its last me ages. I don't personally think it smells similar to the original Elle fragrance, it has a fruitier scent that I like more. This perfume only comes in a huge 90ml bottle which I never bring out with me as it would weigh down my handbag and I'd love ridiculous pulling it out. My solution for this is my nifty travalo, I'm not going to go into great lengths explaining what this is as you all probably know what it is already. I just find them super handy and they are not too pricey which is great.

What has made it into your July favourites?


Sunday, August 5, 2012

Magic Moments in Manchester

As you all know by now, I arrived back from Manchester last Sunday. I've been to this wonderful city twice already and I'm in love with it. There's so much to do and see over there compared to Dublin which is a serious plus. I went for 10 days in total and I certainly squeezed alot into that period of time. First and foremost I went to Manchester for a PR Internship. It took place over five days so realistically it was more like work experience per se. I wish I had of worked for a longer period of time as I had such a ball. The people were lovely and over the five days I got a great insight into what I want to do in the future. The hours were indeed long (8.30-5.30), but they actually flew by too fast. I may be heading back to college in September now to study PR & Marketing which I'm rather excited about so as they say watch this space.

When I first arrived in Manchester on Friday I was joined by my lovely Mom. Having never traveled to England herself, when I mentioned I was going she jumped at the chance to come for the weekend too. The hotel we stayed in was the MacDonald Manchester Spa Hotel. It was really nice, even though it was a bit of a trek away from the City Centre itself but this didn't bother us in the slightest.The weather was a dream for the full ten days I was there which couldn't of been better. My Mom and I spent most of are time shopping, there will be a post up on what I bought soon. She loved the Arndale and The Trafford Centre. Everyone we met were nothing but nice to us. The three days she came for went by so fast so when Sunday came I was left on my own. This was a completely new experience for me, even though I know Manchester quite well it felt different in a way as I had no one there with me. I really don't know how the rock stars do it at all, I'd miss everyone too much.

When Wednesday came around, my boyfriend Paddy arrived over from Dublin. I couldn't of been happier to see him. We had lots of stuff planned for the remainder of my trip. The first of which was the Olympic football in Old Trafford. To say security there was tight is definitely an understatement but once that was dealt with everything was plain sailing from there. For £35 we got to see two games, UAE vs Uruguay and Team GB vs Senegal. I like my football so I really enjoyed both games alot and it's nice to be able to tell people I seen a Olympic game I suppose. What I didn't like were the horrible crowds after the match it was such a nightmare walking home. We both did alot of shopping between us as everything seems so much cheaper in England. My favourite shopping centre is the Trafford Centre. I've seriously seen nothing like it over here. If you live in Dublin the only thing I could describe it to is Dundrum Town Centre and at that it's about five times the size and much nicer.

The day before we came home, Paddy treated me to my Morrissey ticket. Being honest before Paddy mentioned this concert I'd heard very little about the singer and never listened to his music. On the day of the gig, we went into town early as it was practically are last full day in Manchester. One of our destinations was the Museum of Science and Industry, if your ever in the city you should definitely take a visit as there is so much to do and see. It's very interesting altogether and I'm glad we went. After killing a few hours in town, we headed into the MEN Arena to see Morrissey. I've been to this venue once already to see Taylor Swift almost two years ago, it's one of my favourites. The concert was brilliant, I enjoyed every minute of it. For someone who didn't know Morrissey before the gig I definitely knew who he was when I left. That man has no filter, I think that's why I liked him so much cause he says what he thinks and doesn't care about people reactions. I said to my boyfriend we'd see him again if he played in Manchester as we both loved the gig. 

I'll probably be heading back to Manchester before Christmas so if you know of any places Paddy and I should visit while we're are there let me know in the comments.