28 July 2015

Life Lately #2

Life Lately

A Little Boat Sailing first started off as a beauty blog and if I am honest it will probably always remain that way. I enjoy writing about make up and skincare so much, it's a really nice thing to sit down and do, it's therapeutic to me. Yet amidst the lipsticks, perfumes and cleansers I do like to insert a little snippet of my life and what I am up to at the moment; if anything it is a little online diary for me.

Back in February I wrote my very first instalment of my life lately posts, in which now that we are just over five months since I first published it, I thought it was about time that I posted an update. Since we last properly caught up I have finished my GDL course, which I have to say was a huge relief! I really did find it very difficult because of how intense it was as it was a course that is recognised to the level of a law degree, only you study it in 9 months as opposed to three years; man it was tough. I'm not going to lie in that I also really struggled to gain a balance between that and this blog because to put it simply, I enjoy writing this blog so much. Yesterday I got my results back, I managed to pass everything barring a couple of exams and I am quite frankly gutted. Up until now I have never failed anything, I didn't even fail my driving test yet I have found myself in this situation of a resit. To put it frankly I feel really ashamed and embarrassed about it, it's odd being in this situation as it has never happened to me before. Yes I was that girl who cried on the train to work this morning because of this.

Despite that somewhat miserable start to my post I'm happy that I can say I got my first legal job working in a solicitors, let's just say it's a good thing that this job was not riding on me passing my course first time. It is a full time job so please bear with me whilst I get to grips with working 9-5. My blog posts over the next few weeks will be a little intermittent I am afraid, yet those posts that will be published will still be of the quality I hope people have come to expect here; less is more for me at the moment and I sure hope everyone can understand that for the time being. 

Recently I also got to go to Silverstone which I wrote about, it was a great day out and one that I will never forget. I have always been such a huge fan of Formula One so it was great to finally see the cars in action. Speaking of which, the sport has gone through a very painful week where it has lost one of its promising young drivers. Jules Bianchi was only 25 years old when he sadly lost his life through injuries sustained in a crash at last year's Japanese Grand Prix. It was a very sombre mood watching the race this weekend, although in one way it was nice to see how tight knit the F1 community truly is, it's just a shame it was in such circumstances.

You may remember that last time I wrote one of these posts that I had entered the Invisalign competition with Oasis in which I somehow managed to win. I have had a few people ask me about that so I thought it would be appropriate to mention that here. There has been somewhat of a delay with this process due to various things however I am super happy to report that by the end of August (you have to wait three or four weeks for the Invisalign to come back from America) I should have started the treatment; I can't wait to keep you all updated on the progress.

In terms of beauty I have picked up a few new things recently although I haven't had time to mention them much at all. Due to this post from Catherine I finally managed to purchase the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Palette which had been on my list of products to buy since I very first saw it last year. It sure is a thing of beauty and the product itself is as good as I had heard, despite the high price tag I have not regretted purchasing it at all. There were also two products which caught my eye from the new Lasting Finish by Kate Nude Collection from Rimmel in which I found myself purchasing one of the nude lipsticks in number 45 (I can't see a name) as well as a nail polish called soul session. In the relatively short period in which I have being using them I have to say that I am so impressed, the nail polish is beautiful and the formula even more so whereas the lipstick shade is incredible; it is such a nice nude and I cannot get enough of it.

Finally I would like to end this post with a huge thank you to you. A couple of days ago I reached 3000 followers on Bloglovin. This truly was a figure I could never have imagined, I'm so blessed to have this blog and to be able to interest just a handful of people, let alone more. Thank you.

So there you have a bit of a round up for me, what about you?

26 July 2015

Clarins Autumn Make Up Collection 2015

Clarins Autumn Make Up Collection 2015 That time of year is almost upon us where slowly but surely we start to hear whispers of new make up collections launching. We catch glimpses of a new eye shadow palette and spot a new lipstick on the horizon, although we are never quite sure of the release day so find ourselves waiting eagerly for more news; or maybe that is just me.

For those of you that fancy a peek at the new collection launching from Clarins this Autumn then you're in luck as I have a couple of products from the collection to share with you today. The Clarins Autumn Make Up Collection for 2015 is a humble one in my opinion yet in the same notion it is extremely feminine, sophisticated and natural; I am quite sure that it will be very popular once it hits stores at the beginning of August.

The collection consists of a new limited edition eye shadow palette, two new shades to the Ombre Matte Eye Shadows as well as three eyebrow pencils, two new kohl pencils and two beautiful new lipsticks in what I have to say is utterly beautiful packaging.

Clarins Autumn Make Up Collection 2015

The limited edition Pretty Day Eye Shadow Palette* retails at £33 and consists of five beautiful harmonious shades ranging from light pinks to taupe and dark brown. There is a selection of two mattes and three shimmer shades so you have everything you need here in terms of finish to create a really lovely eye look for both the daytime and evening. Having never tried eye shadows from Clarins before I wasn't too sure what to expect however I'm really happy to say that they performed really well, each and everyone within this palette is pigmented, buttery and easy to blend with hardly any fall out what so ever. It is a really versatile little palette and it is incredibly travel friendly as it is so small and light. As you may have noticed it also comes with a tiny little brush, which I do think is a little unnecessary, however I have to bear in mind that not everyone has an abundance of eye shadow brushes so this may be incredibly useful to others. 

If I had to be critical about anything then it would be that for the price you would in my opinion expect more sturdy packaging because cardboard isn't exactly the strongest material. Having said that on a whole this is a really nice little palette and it is well worth checking out if you're in the market for a new one this autumn.

Clarins Autumn Make Up Collection 2015
Clarins Autumn Make Up Collection 2015

The second product is the Ombre Matte Eye Shadow* in the shade Heather which again does not disappoint in terms of quality. At £19 these are cream to powder formulas, although I wouldn't take cream literally as they're relatively solid within the pot. They are however very easy to blend because they do have a very soft texture to them, in fact I have been really impressed with this shade in particular because I am really enjoying wearing purple at the moment. This is the ideal shade for me as it is relatively safe as it is quite a dusty purple, yet it offers something different to my traditional bronze and taupe choices.

Alongside the eye shadows I have being testing out the Rouge Eclat Lipstick* in the shade Tawny Rose; this is a new release to the range and retails at £19.50. Of course with Clarins there is always a skincare benefit hidden away somewhere, of which these lipsticks contain the benefit of the Nutri Youth Complex which helps to protect lips against dehydration. The formula also contains Vitamin E and plant waxes such as jojoba and sunflower which help to provide instant comfort. I have to say that in terms of pigmentation this lipstick really is great; it is also very easy to wear and glides on beautifully. It's relatively glossy I would argue but not over the top in the slightest, in fact I just think this is another element which makes it so easy to wear.

Tawny Rose truly is beautiful; to me it is a true autumn nude which I'm already more than happy to sport. It is my darkest nude by far and I really like that, it is more sultry without being harsh which I think is key. This is a shade I would highly recommend taking a look at if you get the opportunity, especially if you like a nude which lies on pink/brown spectrum as it is already a firm favourite of mine, I'm just grateful that it isn't limited edition.

Overall I have to say that from my experience in using these products that I'm really looking forward to seeing the collection launch soon, it really is a lovely collection for the coming season. Out of the products featured here today the stand out items for me are the Rouge Eclat Lipstick, closely followed by the Ombre Matt Eye Shadow as the shades for me are absolutely perfect for autumn.

This collection launches nationwide come the 2nd of August so keep your eyes peeled, if not for the lipstick alone.

22 July 2015

Vichy Purete Thermale | New Launches

Vichy Purete Thermale Review

There is no denying that when it comes down to skincare that the French have it sussed. Over the last couple of years now I have in that time tried a few different brands out and have always been impressed. The most recent brand that I have discovered is Vichy, where up until now I had not used any of their products before. I have been aware of Vichy for a while, particularly after paying a visit to Edinburgh one year where I stayed with a Korean lady whose skin was immaculate; naturally I noted what skincare she had in her bathroom and Vichy was indeed the main one.

Recently Vichy has released some new products to their Purete Thermale range which is targeted towards all skin types, even the most sensitive. This range is particularly targeted towards protecting the skin from environmental damage caused by various factors such as pollution. I have noticed that brands are leaning very much towards this these days which I guess in an ever expanding, busy world that it is perhaps warranted more so now than ever. 

For the last few weeks now I have being trying out two of the latest additions to the range. The new releases consist of the Vichy Purete Thermale Fresh Cleansing Gel and the Purete Thermale Beautifying Cleansing Micellar Oil; both have been welcome additions to my skincare routine. 

The Vichy Purete Thermale Beautifying Cleansing Micellar Oil* was one that intrigued me immediately as I'm a huge fan of micellar waters in general for removing my eye make up as to date they are the only thing I will use on my eyes on a regular basis. Now of course, this is not like the traditional micellar waters that we all know and have come to love as this one is oil based. However, I wouldn't for an instance let this put you off as I personally have been very happy with this product, in fact so much so that I already know that I will purchase this before I run out of this current sample. At the moment I am using this product as my pre-cleanse, to put it simply I use this to remove my make up as it breaks it down really well and removes my eye make up so much better than I had initially expected. With this being an oil I did at first expect it to be quite thick yet it is quite watery if I'm honest which means it feels nice and light on the skin. I massage this all over my face and gently over my eye lids to help break down my eye make up; for the record I do not wear waterproof mascara as I have no need to therefore I haven't tested it on that. Once I have done this I simply wash it off whereby upon contact with water the oil based cleanser emulsifies into a milky consistency which makes it very easy to wash away. Having done this my skin is left feeling moisturised and very clean and that's before I have even gone in for my second cleanse.

For the morning time I have being reaching for the Vichy Purete Thermale Fresh Cleansing Gel* which I have found to provide a really refreshing cleanse which wakes me up; especially after only four hours sleep when the cat has being going crazy all night (that's a whole different story). With this being a gel I tend to always opt for morning use with this type of cleanser as of an evening I prefer a cream or balm cleanse as nine times out of ten I have being wearing make up that day. This is a nice cleanser for the summer although I personally think that if I were to use this all of the time every single day that my skin may perhaps find it a little drying as it is a foaming cleanser, although having said that in the time that I have being using it my skin has been fine. 

Both of these products smell really nice which only adds to the pleasure of using them, although out of interest the gel cleanser slightly stings my eyes if I get it too close whereas the micellar oil does not. If I had to pick just one of these products to continue using then my vote would go to the Vichy Purete Thermale Beautifying Cleansing Micellar Oil every single time; it just works. Incidentally it has also meant that I have not felt the need to buy any cotton pads for removing my eye make up with my standard micellar water which has been a huge bonus as I get through those things very quickly.

Have you tried the Vichy Purete Thermale range before?

19 July 2015

Charlotte Tilbury x Norman Parkinson

Charlotte Tilbury Norman Parkinson Collection 
Charlotte Tilbury has in my humble opinion created one of the most beautiful make up collections ever released. Her iconic looks are not new to beauty enthusiasts and the brand is easily one of the most attractive beauty counters I have ever encountered. What with the rose gold toned packaging and the extremely well thought out eye shadow quads and of course fantastic quality, it sure is a brand that I find hard to beat and to ignore. 

In the past I have been no stranger to her products and have since they were first released managed to pick up a few here and there; the Dolce Vita palette will forever hold my heart. Yet when I heard all about the summer collaboration with British Fashion Photographer Norman Parkinson I immediately knew that this would be a collection worth waiting for.

Charlotte Tilbury Norman Parkinson Collection
Charlotte Tilbury Norman Parkinson Collection

The Charlotte Tilbury Norman Parkinson Collection consists of an array of beautifully packaged products, some of which have a twist on much loved favourites. Within the collection there is the Colour of Youth Lip and Cheek Glow which is a refreshing rosy hue which adds a youthful flush to the cheeks. The presentation of this is second to none and it embodies a picture of a previously unprinted image of Norman Parkinson's wife Wenda. The second piece is one of Charlotte's most popular products, that being the Filmstar Bronze and Glow. This limited edition cream formula has a gorgeous dewy finish and is in my opinion easier to work with than its powder counterpart. This product is beautifully portrayed by Jerry Hall which features an iconic Vogue cover shot from 1975.

The collection also consists of two limited edition make up bags which I must admit I am on the fence about. Whilst I absolutely love the designs of them and secretly wish I owned one, they are in my opinion a little too expensive for what they are. Having said that, don't get me wrong though because if money was no object then I certainly would have picked up the On Call Make Up bag.

Charlotte Tilbury Norman Parkinson Collection
A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of  previewing this collection a week or so before its official release in Selfridges, where at the time having been able to try out the products myself I settled on treating myself to two items from it. The first item I decided to pre-order was the Dreamy Glow Highlighter which features yet another stunning photograph by Norman Parkinson of Carmen dell’Orefice for Vogue in 1959. This highlighter is of fantastic quality and does not disappoint as it is incredibly fine, beautifully pigmented yet it is not over the top in the slightest. In comparison to the highlight from the original Filmstar Bronze and Glow I would say that this one leans more towards a peach tone whereas the original is more of a champagne tone. They're not miles apart so I would advise comparing them at your local counter in order to make your mind up as to whether to pick this one up or not; having said that, I'm glad I did.

Charlotte Tilbury Norman Parkinson Collection
No make up collection would be complete without a lipstick or two gracing the scene, of which out of the two one in particular caught my immediate attention at the preview event. Starting off with Miss Kensington, this was the one out of the two that I thought would be the one I would gravitate towards the most. It is a nude after all and most certainly falls within the spectrum of my most worn lipstick shades, yet when I tried the 1975 Red instead I was instantly sold on its much brighter and bolder counterpart.

Having never tried any of the matte revolution lipsticks from Charlotte Tilbury before I must admit that I found myself feeling a little apprehensive, I just was not sure what to expect. I struggle with matte formulas, there is no denying it yet I have to say that the formula of the Matte Revolution Lipsticks is hands down the best I have ever tried. This is not drying on the lips in the slightest which is always something I look for, particularly within a matte formula. It does not drag or seep into lines; in fact it is hard to believe it is a matte formula at all. In terms of pigmentation the 1975 Red is incredible and wear time is seriously good. I want to keep talking about this over and over yet I will refrain from doing so. Ultimately it is safe to say that I will be adding more of these lipsticks to my collection in the future.

Charlotte Tilbury 1975 Lipstick

The 1975 Red is not your typical red; it is described by Charlotte as her 70's sunset red which I think is a perfect description. There are blends of red, orange and coral within this which I think makes it so unique, I really do think it is a universally flattering red which would suit so many different skin tones.

What do you think of the Charlotte Tilbury Norman Parkinson Collaboration? 

16 July 2015

Interview Make Up

Interview Make up When it comes down to interviews I think we can all agree that at some point nerves may sometimes get the better of us. No matter whether you now have your interview technique down to a fine art there are most likely past occasions where an interview has had you feeling a little bit nervous. We can all relate to that tingling feeling in our tummy or stumbling over our words, in fact I don't think I can ever recall an interview of mine which has gone perfectly.

Recently I had an interview which is what sparked this whole blog post off as it got me thinking about the make up that I was going to wear. Whilst I did not want to wear lots of make up, I did want to ensure that I was feeling confident about myself (or at least appearing so). Knowing that my make up would look nice and natural without any blemishes being visible was a must for me as they are something I can be quite self-conscious of when I'm suffering from them. Lately my skin has been a little bit neglected, although it is all self-inflicted of course as I have indulged in a bit too much birthday cake and chocolate.

I selected a few products that I knew would provide me with a nice, natural look without being too over the top. Personally at an interview I really do think less is more, although that could apply to most things these days when it comes to make up, as on a whole I do prefer a natural look and rarely look towards exaggerating any of my features extensively.

Interview Make up
Upon sitting down to write this post I realise that I have forgotten to photograph the primer that I used. For completeness I am currently using the Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch* which is a product that I have recently reviewed. This is a lovely primer that really sets the foundation for my base; it is also the best primer I have used so far in terms of upholding the length of my make up. For my base I chose to use my most recent make up purchase which is the Chanel Vitalumière Aqua Foundation. This is a product that I have read countless things about from many blogs in the past, of which when I last visited Selfridges I found myself being matched up and walking away with my very own bottle only half an hour later. This is a beautiful medium coverage foundation which is incredibly light on the skin and is easy to blend; I absolutely love the dewy finish that this leaves on my skin.

For concealer I have being trying out the latest one from Barry M which I have to say has impressed me so far. The Barry M Flawless Light Reflecting Concealer is really quite lovely for brightening up those dark circles so this is seeing me in good stead at the moment. I find it quite hydrating and more importantly it doesn't set into any fine lines, therefore this has fast become one of my favourite high street products for a long time. In terms of covering blemishes it doesn't do too much of a bad job at all, in fact overall it is a pretty good concealer. Moving onto brows I rarely stray from one of two products, that being the Illamasqua Brow Gel or Soap and Glory Archery*. For my interview I chose the latter as for me it provides a much more natural finish in comparison to the brow gel, especially because on occasion I can be a bit heavy handed which can result in a stronger brow than I'm originally going for; I didn't want any errors on the morning of my interview.

Interview Make up

For my eyes I knew exactly what I wanted to create which was a delicate smoky eye which is easily created using the Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette*. I didn't actually use a liner on the day as I wanted to keep things really soft therefore opted to use a tiny bit of the black eye shadow instead as this creates a much softer finish in comparison to a liquid liner. For blush I included two here as I think both can be appropriate and are very much determined by what shade of lipstick you decide to wear. NARS Deep Throat is an incredibly pretty peach shade which would add a gorgeous flush to the cheeks, which when accompanied by the Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick in the shade naked this would create a really nice natural look with more colour being focused upon the cheeks. However if you prefer a bit more colour on the lips as I do then the Max Factor Creme Puff Blusher in the shade nude mauve and the Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in honey work really nicely together too. In the end I chose to use my Revlon Balm Stain and the Max Factor blush for my look, mainly because I simply cannot get enough of those Max Factor blushes.

To finish off my eyes I chose my trusty Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara as this really does provide the perfect amount of volume, length and separation for my lashes. In order to set everything in place I have being using the Soap and Glory One Heck of a Blot translucent powder which helps to set my make up in place.

In order to add the finishing touches to my look I painted my nails in ballet slippers from Essie as this shade is really pretty. Although it takes a couple of applications in order for me to get my preferred finish I do think it is worth it. 

Ultimately of course it is your interview so only you can make the decision as to what you think is appropriate, naturally it all depends on the type of job you're going for too. I would love to hear about the type of products you like to wear to interviews or indeed the ones that you wear in the work place as I know that some jobs can be more particular than others in terms of the make up people wear.

13 July 2015

Boots Budget Skincare

Boots Budget Skincare
Boots is probably my most favourite place to shop for beauty items in the UK. There is such a huge variety of products and brands to choose from, whether it's high end luxury or budget beauty there are products available which cater to everyone. What with so many brands being available I think it may be easy to overlook some of Boots very own brands, of which there are quite a few products available which cater for different skin types, needs and of course ages. Recently I have been able to try out some budget skincare from Boots after they sent out to me their #BootsBeautyBox which is often sent out to a review panel. They're not launching a beauty box which I think is important to stress here, however wouldn't it be great if they did!

Boots Budget Skincare
The Botanics Radiant Youth Hydrating Eye Cream* was a welcome addition to my skincare routine as it provides hydration to the delicate eye area. Eye creams are something I have to use because I do suffer from dehydration myself. Formulated without parabens and with active ingredients such as Gingko which acts as anti-oxidant against environmental stresses this is a product that may well be worth looking into if you're in the market for a budget eye cream. At the time of writing this post this eye cream is currently on offer at £5.00 instead of £8.99.

We have all been there, an important event is cropping up and we wake up the next morning with a new friend on our face. In those times we can all do with something like the Boots Skin Clear Ultra Rapid Action Spot Gel* which aims to reduce the size of spots within two hours and redness within four. At just £4.99 but currently on offer for £3 this is a handy product to have in your arsenal as you never know when one may strike!

The Boots Simply Sensitive Day Moisturiser SPF15* for me is an extremely affordable moisturiser priced at just £3.49. Particularly targeted towards those with sensitive skin this is a nice light hydrating moisturiser which does not contain any fragrances; however I have noticed that it does contain mineral oil so this is one to think about if you are wary of using products with that particular ingredient in, if you're not however then I think it would be a lovely one to incorporate into your routine. My skin type is oily to combination and I do find that this can be a little bit greasy for me, although if you have dry skin and are on a budget I do think this would be worth checking out.

Micellar waters are extremely popular still and I can't see them going anywhere just yet. The Botanics All Bright Micellar 3 in 1 Cleansing Solution* is yet another one which promises to dissolve make up and to tone and purify the skin; it also says that no rinsing is required. Now, where that last point is concerned I would still recommend washing your face and rinsing this off; micellar water is no substitute for cleaning your face. Having said that this product does work very well at removing my eye make up (I haven't tried it on waterproof mascara mind you), whereby at just £2.99 it will be one I buy for myself when my trusty Garnier version is not on offer.

Boots Budget Skincare

Moving onto the Boots Tea Tree & Witch Hazel Charcoal Facial Scrub* this has been a product that I have looked at before in store and had wondered myself what it was like. Having now tried this I am actually quite torn about it and my reasons for this are as follows. Firstly at £3 it is super affordable and when I have used it I have always been left with skin that feels incredibly smooth and clean afterwards which is always a good thing, however there are fine apricot seeds in there which I think are on the cusp of being a little too abrasive. Personally I can deal with it because my skin is not super sensitive however I think for those of you that do have sensitive skin then this may be one worth reading more about first.

My favourite product was the  Boots Essentials Cucumber 3 Minute Clay Mask* which at just £1.50 I do think is an absolute bargain. This is a really lightly scented mask which feels lovely on the skin and sets quite quickly. You only have to leave it on for three minutes and then it can be easily washed off. After use my skin is left looking clear and bright without any tight feeling what so ever. Despite this mask containing parabens I do think it is a product worth checking out if you're on a budget because it really is quite lovely, in fact I would happily pick this up for myself in the future.

Rounding up this post today is the Boots Essentials Moisturising Wipes* which I have to say I am personally not keen on at all. I never use this type of product for my face because they're just not an adequate substitute for cleaning your face properly. I guess if you're going away to somewhere where there are not many cleaning facilities such as a festival then these may come in handy but if not then I personally would find no other use for them other than for cleaning my make up packaging.

Overall there is a bit of a mixed bag of products here, some hits and misses yet ultimately I do think that Boots have some great products on offer at some truly amazing prices. 

12 July 2015

The Sunday Script #1

Sunday Script
In a bid to start posting of a weekend more frequently I have decided to bring back my Sunday post. If truth be told I was feeling like my blog was missing something of a weekend, in fact I wanted to include a more personal post each week in which when sitting down and thinking about it I decided that this type of post would do nicely for a weekend feature. Sunday's are quite possibly my favourite day of the week, I enjoy being at home relaxing with my family, having a lovely Sunday roast and just generally having a bit of a chilled out, fuss free day. Having said that it is also a day that I like to use as a way of preparing for the week ahead, therefore come the end of the evening I know what my plan for the coming week is.

Currently I am working Sundays at the moment however they won't be for much longer as I recently got a new job, hurrah! Today I plan on having a bit of a lie in before I have to head off to work for my afternoon shift; I really look forward to a cheeky snooze in bed on a Sunday as it is the one day I can do so without feeling any form of guilt. Once I am home I'll be catching up with the Wimbledon final in which I hope will be into its fifth set, this is not just so we have a nice tight match but also so that I can catch the match after work, as otherwise it will have long finished by the time I get home.

On Saturday evening I was delving into various boxes that we still have yet to unpack from moving (the not so important stuff) and whilst doing so I found my copy of Sali Hughes Pretty Honest. I had being looking for it a few weeks ago and had been unsuccessful so I am super happy that I managed to find it. I'm hoping to settle down and start reading this properly soon as I have being itching to read it since I purchased it, yet sadly moving and having exams got in the way a little.

Speaking of which, I am also looking forward to picking up my copy of the Millie Marotta Animal Kingdom Colouring Book. I know these may sound a little daft to some but I really like how therapeutic they can be, especially in a world that is so technology based; it is really nice to put pen to paper and indulge in something creative.

Whilst out shopping in town last week I managed to track down the St Tropez In Shower Gradual Tan which has being doing the rounds recently. I won't pretend to say that I had not fallen for the hype because I have, therefore I'll be trying this out later on this evening in order to see how I get on with it.

What are you up to today?

11 July 2015

Clarins Everlasting Foundation + SPF15

Clarins Everlasting Foundation + SPF15 Review

Today I am back with a good old fashioned make up review. It feels like a long time since I wrote one of those and do you know what it already feels good. The product I am looking at today is the Clarins Everlasting Foundation +* with SPF15 which I have being trying out on and off for the last three months or so. With this being my first ever foundation from Clarins I wasn't entirely sure what to expect. I am sure we can all agree that when we are used to a certain brand we tend to have a certain expectation, yet because I had never tried one from Clarins before it was completely uncharted territory for me.

Starting off with packaging the Clarins Everlasting Foundation + instantly sets out a good impression to me. It is a sturdy frosted glass bottle, which, I know does not always suit everyone yet for me personally I like this as it is very rare that I take my foundation out of the house for travel purposes. Secondly a huge thumbs up is awarded for the fact that this has a pump because in my experience there are many brands that can be a little sneaky by not including one which is a huge bug bear of mine. I personally think that when you are paying over £15 for a foundation that this is the least they can do.

From doing a little research on this product I have discovered that this is a reformulated version of the much loved original Everlasting Foundation in which I can only base my review on this version because I have not tried the previous one. The new version promises to offer a perfectly even and flawless complexion with coverage provided for a rather impressive 18 hours. With sixteen shades I think this offers a relatively nice shade range however for those of you with a darker skin tone you may struggle to find one that works best for you, although it is worth popping along to your local counter in order to check out the shades in person.

In regards to the coverage that this provides I would argue that it leans between medium and full as I do find that when I apply it that it pretty much covers all of my blemishes, it also evens out my skin tone very well. From wearing this throughout the day I would agree that it holds up very well on my skin, although I can't imagine anybody wanting to wear any foundation for 18 hours. I think this impressive longevity is helped by the fact that my skin is typically combination to oily in which this foundation I believe tends to work at its best. For those with drier skins I do worry that it could be a little too drying as I know that at times this has stuck to dehydrated areas which have then been quite noticeable; this is something to watch out for if you suffer from dehydration or dry skin.

When it comes to application I found that that I didn't need a lot of it to cover my face as it is a very pigmented foundation; having said that I do find that it can be a little difficult to work into the skin because in my opinion it is quite thick, especially in comparison to the others that I have used in the past. Despite it being quite a thick matte foundation it does feel nice and light on the skin although in terms of finish I can't quite help feel as though it has somewhat of a chalky feeling to it once applied which I believe only exacerbates any areas of dryness and makes them more visible. 

In a nut shell there are most certainly pros and cons to this particular foundation. The pros consist of the fact that it has good coverage, the shade range is good, that it also feels light on the skin and that it also contains an SPF as I do like to know I have some form of sun protection present; even if it is a gloomy day. The cons however are also worth noting as I do think that it is quite thick which requires me either mixing in a little bit of moisturiser to thin it out or just blending for a longer period of time. In my experience it also highlighted dehydrated areas a little bit too much for my personal taste. I was quite aware of this when I was wearing it so it didn't make me feel too good; having said that you may have a completely different experience to me and of course when my skin is at its optimum this may work very well indeed.

Overall I'm a little bit torn over this product, I think for £27.50 it is most certainly one that you need to obtain a sample of in order to try it at home first because it is a bit of an odd one. 

8 July 2015

Polka Dot | Yumi 30 Days of Summer

Polka Dot Skater DressPolka Dot | Yumi 30 Days of Summer Polka Dot | Yumi 30 Days of Summer

Spotty Sleeve Dress: c/o Yumi, Black Wedges: Dorothy Perkins, Tropical Print Wallet: c/o Yumi

We are officially in summer and boy don't we know it. It has been unnaturally warm here in the UK over the last few days and if I'm honest I'm already looking towards autumn. Deep down I'm a little insecure when it comes to summer clothing, I don't like to have too much flesh on show, in fact I am already craving my knitwear, jeans and boots already as that is typically my comfort zone when it comes to fashion. Despite this for now I'm having to dress weather appropriate whereby over the weekend I actually found myself managing to catch the sun, albeit being a little bit sun burnt (oh the shame) therefore I thought I had better cover up my shoulders and arms with this little number from Yumi.

As part of the Yumi 30 Days of Summer Blogger Challenge I was asked to pick out a couple of items to put together my summer outfit. The Yumi Spotty Sleeve Dress was the perfect choice as I do like my black and white clothes so this instantly stood out to me. This is the type of dress that I think can be worn no matter what time of year as it is classic in design, pattern and simplicity. Paired up with simple black wedges (my easy way of adding height to my midget status without falling over) and the Tropical Print Wallet I think this combination has made a nice little evening outfit for the summer time. Speaking of which I'd like to draw attention to the super cute pineapple zip charm on that wallet; mmmmm pineapple!

The beginning of the week saw my 26th birthday (ahem, I mean 21st) so I'll be going out this weekend for a bit of a belated celebration. Weather permitting I'll be wearing this to go out in for a spot of lunch, as hopefully we will have some lovely sunshine. The weather has being teasing me whilst I have been stuck inside at work for the last week so keep your fingers crossed for me. 

7 July 2015

Shoetique Giveaway!

Shoetique Giveaway
For someone such as myself who has practically lived in Converse for the last five years I have to say that I find the process of shoe shopping to be pretty daunting to say the least. I rarely go out to buy shoes as I know deep down I am pretty picky, I also have feet which fall into half sizes which can make things a little more difficult. My shoe shopping days tend to result in having walked the entire length of town looking for the perfect pair and then coming home without any anyway, only to then proceed and order the first pair online that I tried on that day.

Recently I have being browsing online at Shoetique which is an online footwear store which happens to stock a lot more brands than I originally thought. My beloved Clarks are on there which I have made a mental note about as that store is always my first point of call these days when I am looking for a new pair of shoes; I am all about comfort when it comes to looking after my tootsies! Luckily for one of you today Shoetique are offering you the chance to win a £50 voucher to spend on their online site. I think this is a great opportunity to update your footwear wardrobe, especially if you're after a new pair of sandals for an upcoming holiday as they currently have some lovely ones available.

Naturally I picked out some of my favourites above. Eagle eyed readers amongst you may have spotted the Clarks Hamble Oak Brogues which I have mentioned before; I think it's about time I finally picked those up as I have wanted a pair for such a long time now.

In regards to the giveaway all you have to do to be in with a chance of winning the voucher is simply fill out the rafflecopter form below. The giveaway will run until the 17th July where once it comes to an end I'll send out an email to the winner, therefore please do keep an eye on your inbox and remember to leave an email address or some form of contact details just in case you are the chosen winner. This giveaway is being provided by Shoetique and is open to the UK only; once the winner has been informed Shoetique will contact you in regards to the prize.

Good luck to everybody that enters and don't forget to let me know what you would treat yourself to if you were to win.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

6 July 2015

British Grand Prix 2015

British Grand Prix 2015
Motorsport, it is in the blood of the nation and is one in which the Brits tend to excel at. Today is my birthday and what a way to kick off the start of my birthday than to write about one of my favourite things, that being F1. This year I found myself very lucky in that I was able to attend the qualifying day at the British Grand Prix which is held at Silverstone in Northampton. A few weeks ago I wrote a blog post about F1 and in doing so I was kindly provided with two tickets to attend the Saturday event. This year marks the tenth year in which I have being watching F1 so it was fantastic to be able to finally attend a race weekend, one year I will make it to an actual race day as despite not being able to see a lot (the cars are super quick) the atmosphere and experience will make it all worth it.
British Grand Prix 2015 Having never been to any form of Grand Prix weekend I wasn't quite sure what to expect, however there was a lot more to do and see than I had expected. There was entertainment from the Red Arrows and their fantastic display which for me was incredible to see. I hadn't seen the Red Arrows for quite a few years so it was really great to see them in action. There were also races from both GP2, GP3 which are feeder series for F1 as well as the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup.

British Grand Prix 2015 British Grand Prix 2015
Walking around the jam packed venue there was countless food vendors which sold a variety of different foods. There was also wine and beer stalls, pic n mix stalls and more than one ice cream truck; needless to say I headed straight in their direction for my ice cream and strawberry sauce! I also stopped off at one of the Ferrari team merchandise stalls where I may have come away with my very own Ferrari hat which of course had number 7 on it; I'll forever be a Kimi Raikkonen supporter. Team merchandise tends to be super expensive so I only picked up the one thing, although I wouldn't have minded a Red Bull top as they are really nice.British Grand Prix 2015 British Grand Prix 2015
Overall I had such a lovely day, the weather was beautiful and the atmosphere was great! Everyone was in high spirits and looking forward to a great race weekend; it was really nice to be surrounded by fellow F1 fans.

Have you ever been to F1 weekend?

The tickets for this event were kindly provided to me for writing a post about F1 in June. There was no requirement for me to write about the event at a later date however I really wanted to share with you my day out to Silverstone as it was something I really enjoyed.

4 July 2015

June Beauty Favourites

June Beauty Favourites It isn't very often that we can experience a bit of the old sunshine here in the UK yet I have to say that this week has been absolutely beautiful! Granted it has been a little bit too hot at times and we have had some rather odd spells of thunder, rain and even hail yet on a whole it is great to finally bring out the ice cream without sitting inside in front of the TV! This truly wouldn't be a UK blog without the weather being mentioned somewhere now would it.

Onto this month's beauty favourites I have picked out five items that I have being using the most. Those who visited my blog a few days ago will spot my most recent review which was the Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch*. This has been the only primer that I have reached for since it was kindly sent out to me to road test around a month ago, where I have to say it has become my firm favourite. For a while I had being using the Laura Mercier Foundation Primer and whilst I was quite happy with it I had wondered if there was something better. For me personally I find the Clarins primer to work much better on my skin type which is oily to combination with the odd areas of dehydration.

Sticking with make up products for one more moment I have here a Vintage Metallix cream eye shadow from Illamasqua in the shade 'Embellish'. During Illamasqua's last online sale I managed to snap up a little gift set which contained a brow gel, gel liner and this eye shadow in which out of all three this was the product that was left feeling a little unloved. During a little clear out a few weeks ago I made a mental note to start using this and have not looked back since. It is a beautiful cream eye shadow which blends out effortlessly and is super pigmented; a little sure does go a long way with this. Like all of my cream eye shadows it falls within the bronze spectrum yet this particular one also has tiny flecks of glitter in it which it subtle but still eye catching; I think this makes this particular eye shadow much more unique. Whilst I do think that this is more than wearable for day time use I'd much prefer to wear it for an evening out because of the added glitter element.

My trusty Burt's Bees lip balm* in the shade grapefruit has not left my bag this last month as for some reason my lips have being really suffering of late. I have a couple more of these floating around and tend to reach for them over every other lip balm I have. They are simple to use and they provide me relief for a couple of hours, they're also pretty affordable too. This month I'm back with an old favourite and oh how I missed it within my routine! The Liz Earle Instant Boost Skin Tonic is a repurchase whereby since my original review back in 2013 it has remained to be one of my all-time favourite toners. For me I find that the best time to use this is after I have either used a clay mask or when I have used an exfoliating toner as I really do feel as though it hydrates my skin nicely.

To round off this month's favourites I wanted to end with my budget beauty find. When it comes to cleaning make up brushes I know a lot of people find it to be somewhat of a chore however I enjoy it, I like knowing they are clean. Having said that I can't clean them properly every single day therefore the B Make Up Brush Cleanser was something I decided to pick up on a whim when in Superdrug a few weeks ago. At the time it was on offer for roughly £3 although at full price it is only £4.99. I thought this was a pretty good to honest as it allows me to quickly spot clean my brushes without having to wait a few hours for them to dry. Whilst it will never make up for washing them properly (I save that for the weekends) I do think that this has helped me quite a lot, especially when I seem to use the MAC 217 for everything these days.

What have been your beauty favourites this month?

2 July 2015

Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch

Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch Review

Being a beauty blogger for the last three years has opened up a whole world of tips and tricks that I never knew about. There are so many that I now carry out on a regular basis where some of them have actually become part of my daily routine. A prime example of that (pun completely intended) has been that of incorporating a primer into my make up routine.

Over the last few years I have tried a fair few of which there have been a variety of different brands, price points and indeed opinions. Primers have always been the type of product that I have never quite managed to feel satisfied with as I have always been left wondering if there was something better out there. One of the most recent primers that I have being using is Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch* primer which I have to say had a lot of very good feedback from some of my favourite bloggers therefore I was very intrigued as to how well it would work for me.

Aimed at a range of different skin types this is likely to be a primer that is worth considering trying out if you haven't already. It has a cream like texture which is incredibly smooth; this allows it to glide onto the skin beautifully. The texture for me reminds me somewhat of Benefit Porefessional however they are different in colour, I also feel that once applied that the Clarins version feels smoother on the skin although the difference is very small. The Clarins primer does not feel heavy at all and helps to provide an almost veil like layer over any imperfections. In particular I have noticed that it cover areas of dryness very well, in fact, I think that it does this better than any other primer that I have tried to date. 

Upon use I tend to apply three dots of the primer, one on my forehead and one on either cheek and then I simply rub it in gently across my face all whilst focusing on any areas where I know my make up tends to fade first; this is always around my nose and my chin. Once applied my skin is prepped and ready for my make up base of choice which currently is either my Nars Sheer Glow foundation or the new Laura Mercier Silk Creme* foundation.

In terms of longevity I really have noticed that when I get home from work or after I have been out that my make up is lasting a lot longer. Whilst it will never look as good as when I first applied it several hours before I do think that this primer has made a noticeable difference. In fact when I first started testing this out I had originally forgot that I was testing out the primer and had been shocked at just how good my make up was looking six hours later, it didn't take me too long to think back and realise what it had been that I had used that morning.

In order to keep things balanced I do like to say where I think this product can be improved and that for me is simple. It would be lovely to see this in a little tube of some sort as it would be a lot my hygienic that way. Clarins have tried to tackle this issue to an extent as this does come with a little spatula of sorts however let's be honest, I don't think many of us will stick to using those for long; I have already lost mine.

For me this is without a doubt a great product and is whole heartedly one that I will be purchasing in the future once this current pot runs out.

1 July 2015

Beauty & Go Bioactive Beauty Drinks | My Thoughts

Beauty & Go Bioactive Beauty Drinks

If you remember back in April I posted all about Beauty & Go and their bioactive beauty drinks, in which during that post I mentioned that I would be trying out the detox drink for one month in order to see how I got on. Well fast forward eight exams later and a little bit of a delayed blog post and here I am with my overall thoughts on the process.

Back when I wrote my original post you may remember that out of all four flavours available it was the detox drink that in my opinion tasted the worst; in fact I actually liked the other three quite a bit so as I began this little experiment I found that I was already off to a bumpy start. Originally I started off with drinking two of these each day however I soon began to really struggle and had to drop down to just one. I am not the sort of person to readily admit defeat so soon yet I honestly found this drink to be really hard to stomach; it quickly developed into something that I would put off until the very last minute of the day.

The detox drink as the name suggests aims to detox and purify the skin as it consists of macro Antioxidants from pomegranate and lemons. It also contains collagen, hyaluronic acid, artichoke, broccoli, orange fibre, cucumber, spirulina algae, dandelion, spinach, mint and nettle, citrulline, natural olive fruit extract, resveratrol, zinc and vitamin C. It is needless to say that this list is full of good stuff. I wanted to love it, I truly did, yet the after taste that this left in my mouth was one I never quite got used to, even after drinking one a day for a whole month.

In regards to any physical improvements I saw I will be honest and say that they were very subtle, I did notice that a few weeks into my challenge that my skin was clearer and that it did indeed look brighter although I am yet to be fully convinced that the detox juice was the reason behind that. I honestly think that things like this ride on so many factors, for example your diet, your stress levels and sleep pattern and indeed whether you exercise or not. Whilst I do think they can be helpful to a certain extent I also think that you need to be putting in effort in every area of your life and not just hoping for a miracle in a bottle as it were.

Despite the fact that I personally did not like the taste of this particular drink I know that others did so it really is one that you need to sample for yourself. Beauty & Go drinks are sold in Selfridges and now Tesco so they should be relatively easy to get hold of if you're curious about them. On a side note I'd like to add that aside from the detox drink that the other three were really quite lovely, I would have had no trouble drinking those twice a day for a month at all. Overall I am really glad I got to try something like this as I will admit I have always been incredibly curious.

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