Cute idea for a bath bomb but it didn't really work for me! Smells gorgeous in the store, a lovely fruity-vanilla scent and looks extra-cute being such a tiny size with flowers on top. I dropped it in the bath and it fizzed and dissolved in less than 2 minutes, the fastest dissolving bath bomb I've ever seen from Lush, leaving behind candy pink bath water, a teaspoonful portion of tiny pink heart glitters at the bottom of the tub and nothing in terms of smell. My skin didn't feel softer or smell like the lovely bomb itself, quite disappointing. I love Lush bath bombs for their lovely essential oils, gorgeous smell and fun bath experience - although this made my tub look pretty (and leave behind a trail of hearts for the next user!) it didn't make me smell lovely or leave me with soft skin like most of the other bath products do. Glad I tried it but I won't be repurchasing!
Fragrances -Juicy Couture - Viva la Juicy Fragrance Rollerball
Superbeckyy 5/11/2013 11:32:00 AM
After returning to fragrances from a long break (I got fed up of all the suffocating floral scents) I decided to try Viva La Juicy after hearing so many great things about it. I'm a huge fan of Juicy Couture's fashion and accessories and hoped I'd love their fragrances too. I bought a three-set of Viva La Juicy, Juicy Couture and Couture Couture rollerball fragrances from Ebay as I wanted to try a variety of scents. The small rollerballs are perfect for keeping in your bag as the tiny glass bottles can be applied easily and mess-free to the neck, chest or wrist for a quick burst of fragrance. My initial impressions of Viva La Juicy were extremely positive: a unique deliciously fruity fragrance with a touch of floral - very recognisable, sweet and delicious, far from the fusty, pungeant florals that originally put me off fragrances. Whenever I wear this I always get tons of compliments and exclamations of "ooh, you smell nice!"..creepy but good I guess! Viva La Juicy is ideal as a young, fun fragrance - I'd recommend it to anyone who loves fruity fragrances over floral and is looking for something new and refreshing. The rollerballs are perfect for travelling and I really want to buy the full-size EDP to use at home.
I've never had quite such a terrible experience with a product that's otherwise reviewed so glowingly. And I can't exactly put it down to technique - it's hard to go wrong using a shampoo! For reference I have mid-length, relatively healthy, fine coloured hair with dry ends. Looking for a new clarifying shampoo after my HG Boots Expert Build-Up Removal shampoo seems to have disappeared from shelves recently, I bought this from Amazon for around £10 as it's hard to find Redken products where I live. The smell was okay, an acidic fruity appley-pear scent, nothing pleasant but not terrible either. I use it by wetting my hair in the shower or bath before rubbing a handful of the thick, slightly 'stringy' shampoo into my hair like any other shampoo. However I found it next to impossible to lather, using 1/4 of the bottle before even a hint of a lather by which point I gave up - much more than I'd hope to be using for a £10 bottle of shampoo. After rinsing thoroughly my hair felt horribly dried out, more than when I use any other clarifying shampoo, so I followed up with a deep conditioner and regular conditioner immediately. Although some say this is one of the safer clarifying shampoos for coloured hair, it did cause more of my colour to wash out than normal.When towel drying my hair and combing some Moroccan Oil through to restore softness, I was shocked at the amount of shedding and realised the amount of hair in the bath - far more hair than usual which was horrifying! This was the only different product I'd used so no doubt the scary shedding is down to this. The only positive is that my hair did feel clean of product buildup afterwards, but are all the negatives worth it? I really don't want to use this again - my hair now feels thinner than before and I've used up far more product than expected. Maybe I got a bad batch? Either way, I won't be using this again and hope I find a decent clarifying shampoo which doesn't make my hair fall out!
I really, really want to love Benefit cosmetics. The packaging is cute and fun, their branding is top-notch and the sales assistants at my local Debenhams are some of the nicest and most helpful I've met. But when it comes to the product itself, I've had bad luck with this brand. I received a full size of this primer in the limited edition 2012 London Olympics packaging, costing £19.50. The packaging is really novel and lovely - the full size tube allows you to twist the product which is dispensed through holes in the top of the plastic tube, allowing you to swipe it off and apply. The primer is coral pink and smells exactly like those grape scented markers from school that everyone had as a kid, which is pleasant as most primers either smell of nothing or smell awful. It rubs onto my skin smoothly but doesn't do anything to 'illuminate' my complexion - I assume the pink colour of the product is meant to give a natural glow under sheer foundation, but as I already have pink-toned skin with redness it doesn't do anything like this for me. Currently I use this under my Rimmel BB cream in the warm weather when it's usually too hot to wear foundation or a heavy primer - although it's light when worn, I haven't noticed that my makeup stays in place any longer than when I use a cheap primer or even when using none at all. It definitely doesn't do anything to keep my heavier foundation in place. Unfortunately this primer didn't work well for me - I'll use it up over the summer but unless I get it as a gift I won't be using it again, especially for the steep price. It might work best on someone with less pink skin pigmentation who likes to wear light, sheer foundation. Sorry Benefit, I'm still looking for a product of yours that actually works for me!
One of the more expensive products I own, I finally caved in to buying this after reading rave reviews on a beauty blog. I was wary of using this 'oily' product on my combination oily skin but I really shouldn't have worried about that! Normally I'd use Lush's Ultrabland, cleansing wipes and Lush's Tea Tree Water for removing makeup, but I wanted something that would make my skin feel truly refreshed before going to bed. Costs £19.50 from Clarins counters for a full size tube but I got mine online for £15. First I attempt to get the worst of my makeup off with Boots unscented face wipes and Simple eye makeup remover. I apply a ~1p-sized blob of the wonderfully textured gel into my hands and rub it all over my dry face which creates a 'milky' texture, taking extra care on my eyes - it doesn't sting unlike most cleansing products which is a novelty, but I really dislike the feeling of getting anything in them at all. I then use my Clarisonic Mia gently all over for 60 seconds before washing everything off with a warm damp flannel. Sometimes I'll have eyeliner or mascara traces on my inner eyelids but as I really hate rubbing anything into my eyes I have to remove that separately with a cotton bud and gentle eye makeup remover. After drying my face, my skin feels clean, refreshed, soft and lovely - well-hydrated and not at all greasy. I can't say anything bad about this cleanser, it's one of the best things I've ever bought for my face. Coupled with the Clarisonic I have wonderfully clean, clear skin - who wouldn't want that? Definitely repurchasing when I run out, the price really is worth it!
Eye Shadow -Unlisted Brand - MUA - Undressed Palette
Superbeckyy 5/7/2013 6:00:00 PM
My new favourite palette - you can't go too far wrong for £4. Praised as an affordable dupe for Urban Decay's original Naked palette in the blogosphere, since all shades are..well, they're pretty much all identical in colour, shade & finish - I own both and I only just noticed putting them next to each other how similar the shades really are. Same lights, neutrals, darks, mattes and shimmer shades. I do notice when applying that I need slightly more of the MUA shadow to build up a good amount of pigmentation, but when applied properly it's hard to tell the two brands apart, especially with the lighter shades. It would be interesting to swatch both palettes just to see how similar they really are. My oily lids make short work of any shadow in a matter of hours, but both UDPP and E.L.F's eye primers keep MUA shadows on all day, so I rarely have a problem with lasting power. I use the light matte shades and light shimmer shades the most for every day - love that the palette isn't just mattes or shimmery colours and truly has hundreds of possible combinations due to the selection of shades, unlike coloured palettes where it's harder to mix and match. I haven't mixed these shades with any of my other shades as these all complement each other so well and have transitioned seamlessly from my winter to summer makeup. The packaging is pretty typical 'cheap' thin plastic packaging - absolutely nothing special but at least the front is clear plastic so you can see the shades inside without having to open it up. Although the palette itself feels a bit thin and flimsy, it's done its job so far & I suppose this helps keeps the cost down so I can't complain! MUA shadows aren't the best formula in the world, but they're close enough to similar high-end ones it's hard to tell the difference. I've been using this for months now and don't even feel guilty for using slightly more product to build up the colour because of the price - at £4 it's just rude to say no. MUA is a real hit-or-miss brand but next time I'm in Superdrug I'll be buying all the other palettes!
Lip Treatments -Chapstick - Lipsations Shimmer Berry
Superbeckyy 5/4/2013 4:38:00 PM
Chapstick has recently brought out two Lipsations Shimmer lip balms: Berry and Tropical. I bought the Berry flavour from Superdrug for £1.99 but it doesn't seem to be anywhere online just yet. I've had a bit of a lip product obsession lately so I had to have this since Chapstick products are always affordable winners! Packaging is your typical Chapstick twist applicator with a pretty pink and black design. The balm is very smooth to apply, non-sticky and non-gritty. Plus the berry smell and sweet sugary taste is divine which is a bonus! In terms of moisturising power, it's not the best around but still pretty effective for a shimmery lip product. I apply it to bare lips most days for a hint of shine, re-applying every couple of hours. It could even be worn over matte lipstick for extra sparkle, but I've yet to try it out. Great lip product for a great price - makes your everyday makeup look more put-together like you applied gloss or a sheer lipstick, when really it's just simple, smooth, sweet-smelling lip balm. Love this!
Strange that this lip balm hasn't been reviewed much - maybe it's a UK only product? However it's still widely available, sold in large supermarkets and Boots stores for around £1.60. I picked up this lip balm whilst travelling as the cold weather had dried my lips out horribly. No faults with the packaging - smooth with a long lid that stays secure in my bag and very easy to twist and apply smoothly. The formula doesn't make my lips greasy and doesn't feel like it lingers too long whilst still leaving them nicely moisturised during the day. I keep it in my bag so I can apply whilst in the car or when I'm out to keep my lips from feeling too dry. My only dislike is the smell - pleasant but a bit too perfumed for a lip product. I prefer my lip balms to have an edible scent or very, very little smell. Not bad for a moisturising lip balm and does the job, but next time I'll choose one that's a little less over-perfumed.
Finally got round to reviewing my Clarisonic Mia - I've been using it for 3 months now. I ordered mine from Amazon UK for just under £120 including shipping and an inclusive American plug converter, as it doesn't seem to be sold anywhere else here and we don't have Sephora or Ulta. A very expensive buy for me, but if my skin looks as good as the reviews promise, it'll be worth it over time. The converter plug works fine for me to charge the Clarisonic - the appliance is labelled as universal voltage, ideal for me as I travel to the US a lot and a necessity for anyone who travels. Also included was a small bottle of Clarisonic's 'refreshing' cleanser, which I have reviewed separately and could have done without. It was very easy to set up and after charging for a day it was ready to use. I use the Clarisonic by first applying my cleanser of choice (Clarins' Pure Melt Cleansing Gel is my current favourite) and then massaging all over my face in sections for 10 seconds each, then washing off with a damp cloth. For the first 2 weeks I used it 1-2 times a day; now I use it every 2 days as my skin doesn't need it every day when used regularly. After the first 2-3 weeks my skin looked much clearer and radiant - didn't even know how anyone's skin could be described as 'radiant' before but I now know after using this! My combination skin used to be congested with blocked pores and also being sensitive, nothing really worked except for the Clarisonic. I've read a few warnings online about the Clarisonic damaging skin, but if it hurts, just STOP - you're doing it wrong! All you need to do is buff the top layer of skin very gently to cleanse and exfoliate the surface, not scrub it - the vibrations do all the work. It's a shame the Clarisonic is so expensive to buy from the UK, I'd pay up to £60-80 for what I received. Maybe a spare brush head or two plus some other mini products would have justified the price a bit. However I'm glad I have it now and hope it continues to keep my skin clear and lovely for a long time.
Can't believe I'd never tried these cheap, lovely face masks before! I've been looking for an alternative to Lush's face masks which expire within a couple of weeks, whereas I can keep these in the bathroom cabinet and use them when I need them. So of course, I bought a stack of different flavours - at £1 each it's just crazy not to. The chocolate one is amazing - it really does smell like delicious chocolate. Although you can get more than one use from a pack, I used the whole thing all over my face. It did take longer to dry than the pack specified but at least my face and neck were covered generously and evenly. When the mask colour turns from a dark brown to a lighter brown, it's ready to wash off. My skin felt soft, clean and lovely afterwards - it did a great job of cleaning out my pores and conditioning my skin. The only downside is the mess afterwards - although it does wash out of towels, it will look like someone has violently defecated all over the bathroom. Despite being very careful it ended up all over and down the side of the sink which I had to clean up with bathroom wipes afterwards. A very effective, gorgeous-smelling mask for a great price - ideal to use on an evening in to revitalise your skin. I'll be trying out all the other flavours next..
Favourite BB cream I've tried so far. I prefer wearing BB cream in the summer for light coverage, so I've been wearing this product every day as an easy alternative to foundation. I use my fingers to blend it into my skin over a lightweight primer (Benefit's 'That Gal' is great for wearing under this) to help keep it in place and apply smoothly on my oily skin. I picked the 'Light' shade, which is a touch darker than my pale skin but not too noticeable that it isn't an exact match. If you've tried a Rimmel foundation before, you'll notice it is scented similarly, pleasant & very faint, but not at all overpowering for those like me who are sensitive to smells. It does apply smoothly but requires work to blend into the skin well and can stick to any dry areas which can be annoying to blend out. It doesn't feel greasy or heavy and gives a slight matte but natural finish and evens out the skin tone well. As I have red pigmentation in my nose and chin area I like to dust Rimmel's Stay Matte or another powder lightly over the top to absorb any trace of shine and give further coverage and matte-ness to my skin. This has higher SPF than most makeup products which is ideal when in and out of the sun during the day, but sunscreen is still needed if you burn easily, especially in strong sunlight - don't risk it! My favourite affordable BB cream (£6.99 from all Rimmel stockists & on 3 for 2 in Tesco a lot), this is my go-to product for my face in the summer - easy to apply, good coverage for the price and feels light on my skin without being overly greasy or heavy. Not enough coverage for an evening out but ideal during the day - will definitely rebuy when I run out.
Treatments (Eye) -Nivea - Q10 Refreshing Eye Roll-On
Superbeckyy 5/2/2013 6:51:00 PM
I bought this eye roll-on in hope of banishing the hereditary dark circles and puffy eyes I seem to get constantly, despite sleeping well and being relatively stress-free. I've used it twice a day under my eyes for several months and like how the metal roller feels cooling; also that the product absorbs into the skin fast and helps slightly with my puffy eyes in the morning. However my dark circles are still around and nothing I've used has helped (yet)! Costing £9.99 from all well-known UK pharmacies and large supermarkets, this product is easy to get hold of but is a little expensive for the results when cheaper products (eg. Lacura's eye roll-on) perform exactly the same or better for me. I'll use it up but will keep looking for something that'll tackle my under-eye circles more successfully.
I received this in a free mystery bag as part of E.L.F's Easter promotion and initially stashed it away disappointedly as I thought a peachy-pink blush would clash with my red hair. However I've been using it over the past few weeks and definitely changed my mind! All colours of Mineral Blush currently cost just £2.50 on sale from the E.L.F website (RRP £5) - probably the most affordable blush I've ever come across. The product comes in a loose powder pot so it's a little more fussy to use than regular compact blushes and only a tiny bit amount is needed - shake a little into the tray, swirl the brush into the powder and then tap into the lid to get rid of excess product. I use a soft blending brush rather than the brand's own blush brushes (sold separately) to fully blend the powder into my cheekbone area, as I prefer a soft natural look. The product in the pot looks quite glittery but I found once blended in, it's very difficult to see the glittery particles. When applied, the colour is a really gorgeous peachy pink which really doesn't clash with my red hair despite my initial opinions - perfect for summer. It isn't as long-wearing as my favourite high-end blushes, only lasting around several hours even with a good primer, so would need to be reapplied during the day. I hope that just because this product is in the sale it won't be discontinued anytime soon - I've really grown to love it. I'll be wearing this throughout summer as a gorgeous everyday blush as the colour really does look so lovely on my skin.
Styling Products -TiGi - S-Factor Heat Defender - Flat Iron Shine Spray
Superbeckyy 4/21/2013 7:33:00 PM
Quite simply the best product for straightener addicts I've ever used - coming from the girl who's tried everything! I used to use Tresemme's spray from the Heat collection, but it wasn't anything amazing and when the formula was recently reworked I had to find something else. I bought this product solely due to its stellar reviews, which it really does live up to. I bought mine from Amazon UK for just over £10 - steep compared to my drugstore favourites, but really is fantastic value for money as I've had mine over 3 months and it's still over 90% full as the product only needs to be used sparingly. I spray 4-5 times all over damp hair before combing then blowdrying, and up to 3 times on dry hair before brushing through and straightening. It does look a little oily upon application but disappears when heat is applied. Some heat protecting sprays require dousing your hair in the product but this is NOT one of those..don't risk looking an oily mess, I learned this the hard way! The product really is a pleasure to use - sleek stand-out packaging, a faint smell of synthetic yet delicious strawberries like all the great S-Factor products and most importantly, makes my hair super-soft, sleek and smooth to the touch when styling with absolutely no buildup or oily residue. I was amazed at first what an effect such a small amount of product can do, and that my hair looked and felt so good outside of the salon. I can even just blowdry my hair and go without straightening for a more naturally sleek look, something previously unheard of with my rebelliously wavy hair. This means my hair is in its best condition ever - I don't have to straighten as much plus it's well-protected from any heat it's exposed to. Any product that allows me to skip straightening for my fine, wavy & previously unmanageable hair is unquestionably an HG for me. I've had some awful experiences with heat protection sprays in the past so I always approach them with caution (not even kidding, check out my review for the Beyond The Zone spray) but this is a product that genuinely lives up to its ratings - just check out my soft, smooth, lovely hair for proof, I'm touching it all the time after styling because my hair's never looked or felt so good. I never want to use anything else!
Lotions/ Creams -Unlisted Brand - EXTRA VIRGIN Coconut Oil (All brands)
Superbeckyy 4/18/2013 12:16:00 PM
The perfect product for anyone with unbearable problem skin! I had sore, itchy dry skin under my arms for 2 years (!) - unable to wear proper deoderant, painful to wear any clothes with sleeves, or shave my underarms often. Two doctors diagnosed it as a fungal infection; one diagnosed it as just really, really dry skin. I tried everything: E45 cream, various prescription-only steroid creams, Savlon, tea tree ointment, emulsifying ointment and countless 'moisturising' creams and lotions. Some of the stronger steroid creams helped the problem for a couple of weeks before the problem returned just as bad as before; I didn't want to keep using these scary, potentially harmful creams on my skin. I bought a big tub of Barlean's cold pressed coconut oil from Amazon for £8. I loved the real coconut smell and the way it seems to melt in your fingers - it took a few days of applying on my underarms once at night to see results, but I'm so glad I tried it! My skin has the occasional dry period but it's 100x better than before - I can wear long sleeve tops, jackets and deoderant again, yay! I still apply coconut oil every evening after showering and E45 cream in the morning, though my skin's not too bad if I miss a day or two. I did try it on the ends of my hair as a wash-out deep conditioner but it just made my hair feel greasy, flat and heavy. Think I'll just keep using it on my skin - after having such a positive effect on my life and skin problems it's been one of my best buys ever! Anyone with a similar skin problem NEEDS to try this.