Well hello there,
Something a little different with todays blog.
I get asked A LOT, what products I've been using, shades of make-up, treatments I wear and what combinations I use and take things in.
So I thought, with Christmas on the horizon I'd create this blog as inspiration for some little "to me from the kids" type gift ideas or things to ask your loved ones for.
It has literally taken me 30+ years to really understand myself.
Skin, hair, make-up, supplements and beyond.
What works for me and what doesn't. What may look nice but doesn't feel nice and what is really worth spending my money on based on the reward / improvement in my skin, hair and well-being.
There are certain products I can confidently SAY I now wouldn't be without now and have been using for 6 months plus if not years.
So here I'm going to tell you what I use and why.
Dark Circles / Products for evening skin tone,
SPF & light coverage
The Ultimate Concealer
I have been using Maybelline Eraser for years now.
Ever since a make-up artist recommended it to me as an alternative to YSL Touché Eclat.
I have had genetic dark circles for most of my life and no matter how much water I drink they are very obvious without make-up.
This creamy concealer DOES NOT go into under eye creases and looks great patted in (with you ring finger) and then layered with normal BB cream or foundation.
Maybelline - £8.99 - I use shade Nude
BB Cream / SPF 50
I started wearing SPF 50 on a daily basis around a year ago.
It is so important to me to look after my skin as we can encounter skin damage on days even when it doesn't even seem sunny.
This BB Cream by La Roche-Posay is just so moisturising and leaves my skin feeling 'glowy' not greasy.
I have 'combination' skin so this may not be for oilier skin but for 'dry to combination' skin - this is an absolute winner for those of you that don't like wearing heavy make-up or want an SPF to layer.
I personally wear this over my concealer and under my The Ordinary foundation if I want more coverage.
La Roche-Posay Anthelios Ultra Hydrating Cream SPF 50+ 50ml
I really don't like a very heavy look when it comes to foundation.
I much prefer a dewy look and find that thick foundations look cakey and aging on my skin.
This 'light coverage' foundation has been ideal for me to help blend the are between my concealer and cheeks and create a more flawless look.
There is a really simple step-by-step guide on the website to make sure you get the shade right for your skin and for the price you really can't go wrong with this product.
The Ordinary Serum Foundation with SPF 15 by The Ordinary Colours 30ml
Crème Blush / Lip Duo
Around the time I had Austin I decided to start researching more and more into the colours that worked for my skin tone and I found that rose and peach tones really worked for me.
I bought this gorgeous crème blush and still use it to this day (not the same one obviously but a palette usually lasts me at least 12 months)
I much prefer putting on some cream blush and smudging it in rather that a dry powder blusher that, again can sit in the creases on the skin. It's described as Described as 'an innovative 2-in-1 formula that delivers a natural looking glow' and you can even use this on your lips too.
At £16, to me it is an investment make-up piece (I much prefer to spend money on clothes and skin care) but it lasts SO LONG and no chance of it smashing too. Winner!
A few years ago I attended at Tropics at home party.
I had the shades that would suit me personally selected by the Ambassador and from those chose a peachy cream blush, a highlighter, 3 eyeshadows and an eyebrow powder.
The palette gives you the option to buy a combination of products depending on what you need and use most of. Four large palettes, two large and 4 small, three large and 2 small or 8 small.
Having this palette makes life so easy for me to do a 5 minute make-up routine in the morning and whenever I travel I can simply just throw it into my bag without the fear of it spilling everywhere or cracking.
- Blush - Coral bloom blush
- Brow Boss - Willow Bark
- Eye On You - Shadow - Copper, Pebble & Oatmeal
- Way To Go -Highlighter - Spring Lily
By clicking the image below you receive the palette itself (worth £16)
for FREE and can then add colours and products
of your choice to fill it with!
I absolutely LOVE Primark Lustre Lipsticks.
They are super moisturising, stay put for hours and are only 90p.
The perfect shade for me is SKIN ON SKIN.
Their High gloss is amazing too and a great dupe of the Mac Lip Glass.
I have various shades in this - but CANDY and NUDE AMBITION are my favourite.
Here are some other budget rose / natural / pink lippies very similar to my Primark favourite.
All under £6.
If you'd like more of a snoop inside my make-up bag I created a video one ultimate favourites here>
Dry Skin - Body
Garnier Coconut Body Milk
I have super dry skin, my mum used to call it 'crazy paving' on my legs.
However, unfortunately I really dislike the feel of the super thick moisturisers on my skin, ewwwwww, I can't stand it on my covers when I get into bed or when I put on my clothes in a morning.
Then, I discovered this amazing Garnier cream!!
It's light, absorbs so well and leaves my skin feeling smooth and is under a fiver.
Garnier Intensive 7 Days Coconut Body Milk
Nip and Fab Exfoliator
I absolutely love a fine grain scrub and have used this for over a year now.
It really gets my blood rushing to the surface, scrubs away any dead skin and prepares it for my evening skincare products. I probably use this 3-4 times a week.
"The supercharged, 3-in-1 formula combines the chemical micro-exfoliating powers of 6% Glycolic Acid and 1% Salicylic Acid to unclog and resurface the skin, removing dead skin cells and fighting blackheads, whilst the scrub texture offers mechanical resurfacing. Enriched with soothing and hydrating Aloe Vera, the scrub leaves skin looking brighter, fresher and glowing with radiance. Suitable for oily and congested skin types"
NIP+FAB Glycolic Fix Extreme Scrub 6% 75ml
St Tropez Every Day Tan
Now I'm not someone who can be bothered with full body tan on the regular, I find it time consuming and arduous.
I also find it a waste of money during months when I don't have much body on show.
I found this St Tropez wash off tan a few years ago and could not believe the price.
It's a high end brand for under £10. It doesn't smell, glides on, doesn't stain your hands and you can pick and choose which bits of your body you want to tan based on your outfit.
So, although I don't use this product every day, I always have one in my kit for when I just fancy a bit on my chest, arms or legs and the beauty of it is; it doesn't rub off on your clothing and simply washes away at the end of the day.
I use 'Medium Dark' and I have medium Olive Skin (Spring Seasonal Palette).
Dull, dehydrated, combination skin (face)
As someone who struggles with dark circles and discolouration under my eyes I implement as strict routine when it comes to skincare.
These are my top products
Caffeine Solution for reducing the appearance of discolouration and alleviating symptoms of fatigue and stress.
Hyaluronic Acid for hydration. It draws in moisture and locks it into the skin, providing intense hydration.
B oil for restoring a healthy glow to my complexion.
Supplements To Support Hormonal Balance
When it comes to supplements I always buy from My Vitamins, I find their price per weight of their supplements the best on the market.
Over the last 6 years since having Guy I have built up my daily supplements to around 6/7 per day which I take at night. I include products aiming to target hormonal balance, improve joint strength and perfect my skin.
I'll also link the full video I made on my TOTAL supplement routine below.
Omega 3,6 & 9 - £10.49
Studies have shown that the essential fatty acids, omega 3 and 6 play a critical role in normal skin function and appearance PLUS they work well to support my joints which flare up a few times a year due to my Fibromyalgia.
Evening Primrose Oil - £7.49
Evening Primrose Oil is popular among women for PMS and hormonal regulation. I find taking this really helps to keep my hormones balanced and prevents those annoying mood swings we all encounter from time to time. It also contains Vitamin E which contributes to the protection of cells from oxidative stress.
Vitamin D - £8.49
Known as the ‘sunshine vitamin’, our skin naturally produces vitamin D after being exposed to sunlight. In the winter, or during periods of little sun, our body stops producing it and our stores drop. If we don’t produce enough vitamin D, our bones and general wellbeing can suffer.
I was advised by a nutritionist that we all need to take 1 oral Vitamin D tablet per day and can honestly say since I've done so I have felt new levels of happiness and the S.A.D I used to encounter during dark mornings / evenings is completely GONE!
If you want to know more about my supplement regime, prescribed medication and the impact it has on my life give this video a watch.
Also for everyone that has asked about my pill box in the past -
These are just £1.99 and occasionally have offers on them for 99p
Dry, Brassy / Yellow Toned Blonde Hair
Now this is one of my investment products.
I have been having blonde highlights for YEARS and never gave in to my hairdresser offering me high end shampoos and conditioners.
I think it just always seemed such a big outlay to spend so much on your ACTUAL hair cut and dye and then £50 on top for shampoo on the same day.
However I was recommended this shampoo and thought I'd give it a go.
Look Fantastic stock it at the cheapest price and I HAVE NOT LOOKED BACK.
The change in my hair has been insane. It actually feels like real hair now firstly, secondly it is stronger, smells amazing and keeps it's colour instead of becoming that 'Ginger Tom' brassy yellow, almost orange colour a few weeks after your colour.
I once read that if you can't smell your shampoo / conditioner in your hair at the end of the day then it isn't very good quality. Not sure how much truth is in that but it just stuck with me.
A bottle of this shampoo and conditioner last me around 3 months and as clichéd as it sounds, you really don't need much. The purple shampoo naturally doesn't froth like a normal shampoo so don't be alarmed if you don't get much of a lather.
I've linked the Blonde Absolu Range below but they also have ranges for strengthening, nourishing and hydrating, creating volume and more.
Hair Prep Before Styling
As someone who has mid to shoulder length hair, having highlights can lead to very dry ends especially during the summer and winter months when it get sun and wind damaged.
That on top of heat related styling and we can easily end up with a straw like barnet.
I randomly ordered this around a year a go when my hair felt terrible and love the way this does everything in ONE GO.
It has 10 key benefits all in one handy spray.
Protects from heat.
Prevents split ends.
Enhances natural body.
Repairs dry, damaged hair.
Beauty Works Best Sellers Bundle
Treating Dry Frizzy Hair & Restoring Moisture
Around 3 years a go I started having Olaplex put in my haircare regime at the hairdressers. I then realised there were 'at home treatments' you could buy for your hair to use i between visits. These have been AMAZING for my hair in combination with the Kerasaste shampoo and conditioner.
Olaplex 3 - Strengthens and Repairs
I personally use Olaplex 3 as an intensive overnight treatment round twice a week.
Simply wet your hair and comb it through, add a shower cap (yeah sexy I know) for a more intensive treatment.
I then use my normal shampoo and conditioner in the morning..
Olaplex 6 - Repairs and Protects Coloured and Damaged Hair
I use Olaplex 6 as a styling cream after my Miracle Spray (linked above).
This is a leave in treatment that nourishes, eliminates frizz and creates a glossy, glass-hair finish while providing intense hydration to thirsty ends.
You literally need a smidge. Honestly. Too much will leave your hair feeling loaded with too much product but a tiny pea sized amount is perfect.
The Combo 3 & 6 - The Double Pronged Attack
Pairing two reparative conditioning treatments, this combo works together to target split ends, dryness and damage, leaving your hair soft and silky.
Free Delivery on orders over £25
Use Code NEWBIE for 20% off.
Wanting To Master Simple Hair Waves
My one and only TRESemmé Salon Shine
Curling Wand Set
For as long as I can remember I have looked at other women with luscious waves and thought 'what's their secret, why can't I do that?'.
Then I spent some time googling and watching tutorials.
I practised at home when there was no pressure and eventually nailed it.
I have very fine hair which can look thin and lanky if I simply just straighten it so I'd lusted after the beachy wave look forever.
I bought a curling wand, wrote down the directions from a few YouTube videos; the length of time to hold the curls, what to do after letting it go, and over time became pretty decent at my own version of beachy waves.
TRESemmé Salon Shine Curling Wand Set
Product Storage and Easy Access
For years I struggled with grubby make up bags, not being able to find what I was after and losing time in my strict 5 minute make up routine looking for my trusty items amongst lotions and potions. So I decided to start using clear storage. It works so well for me travelling between mine and Matts most weekends and saves getting things out after a weekend away.
One for haircare and lotions, deodorant brushes etc, one for make-up and one for nail polishes, files, eye liners, brushes etc.
Flay Lay Options
And there we have it ladies.
I hope you have enjoyed an insight into the top products, supplements and tools I use to stay feeling my best, care for and nurture my skin and keep my hormones in check.
Investing in a personalised 'toolkit' that will make you look and feel your best self is not only an investment financially, but emotionally and physically too.
With some luck, these items will give you a short cut to finding items that work for you too, cut down having to wade through all the health and beauty noise we get overloaded with on a daily basis and help you build your own Health and Well-Being kit without breaking the bank.
Lots of Love,
P.s If you are still after a Body Shape Style Bible you can buy one here or send the link to a love one for them to get you one as a gift.