Happy Friday - this post is for the 41% of you that voted for a blog post on my Instagram stories. ;) Given that Instagram stories only last 24 hours, it’s also a refresher for the other 59% of you!
This week I gave a couple of products from the Perricone MD “No Makeup” Makeup Range a try. Since leaving uni I’ve turned into a bit of a beauty junkie and skincare addict so I’ve had my beady lil’ eyes on this range for a while...
(Yeah, I’m that awkward person that’s accurate with percentages, soz.)
I firstly tried the “No Foundation” Foundation. Now don’t get me wrong, there’s things I absolutely love about this product. BUT, there’s certain things about this that just don’t work for me...
I will say that this product literally does do exactly what it claims on the box. It minimises pores (no jokes here lads), reduces redness and the appearance of darker marks/scars, as well as giving a dewy finish to the skin.
However, as someone that really really doesn’t like having skin that looks oily/shiny/sweaty, this was the main aspect that just wasn’t for me. I found that it sort of remained sticky even after applying (which to be fair did make the setting powder firmly stick), but I found that I just didn’t like the way it felt on my face. That’s not to say it’s a bad product, it just didn’t suit me, so if you like a matte finish for your makeup then this probably isn’t for you, but if you don’t mind, then this product is great. It gives a really light coverage on the skin, so I’d say it’s more like a BB cream than Foundation. Great for people that like light coverage.
I did, however, really like the No Bronzer Bronzer. To apply, you squeeze two drops onto the palm of your hand and rub together (be prepared for VERY tanned hands - wipes at the ready) and pat lightly onto the face. To be honest, I was actually shocked at how easy this Bronzer was to use, and I liked that it actually applies as a brown colour and not orange (no Oompa Loompas here gals) so you like like you’ve just spent two weeks on a beach in Bora Bora (a gal can dream).
I’m really keen to try some more of Perricone MDs products so I’ll do another post soon.
You can get the “No Foundation” Foundation here
And the “No Bronzer” Bronzer here
Disclaimer: this is NOT an ad and all views in this post are of my own opinion. The links provided in this post are affiliate links which mean that if you decide to buy anything I have recommended then I will get a teeny tiny percentage. No biggie.
We all have a beauty routine, right? Even if we don't realise it - there are certain products we always use, a certain order we all do our makeup in... (got you thinking now haven't I!)
For me, I had been using a mattifying powder as a base for my foundation for quite some time (I know, please don't hate me - I let my skincare slip whilst I was at uni and ran out of primer! #girlprobs) as I HATE having a shiny face more than anything!!
When I got my hands on Ren's newly launched product called Perfect Canvas, I was excited to test it out as I love clean skincare, but also skeptical - how could a serum leave your face mattified and not greasy...
I followed the instructions on the back of the bottle which is to either apply to clean skin (which I did) or apply with/after moisturiser, before makeup. The 30ml bottle comes as a pipette applicator, so I used 2 drops for each part of my face (2 for each cheek, 2 for the forehead etc) and smoothed it over my face until dry (it dries very quickly btw, and makes the skin very soft and smooth).
I also think this would be really nice to use even if you're not going to wear makeup, as it just evens out the texture and tones of your skin (so you'll look as smooth as a baby's bum :))
It also claims to boost the skins immune system - meaning less breakouts (YAY for clean skincare!! lol)
You can purchase your own Perfect Canvas here (£50), or let me know if you're already using it in your daily routine! Also let me know if you want another post on all beauty products I'm currently using (skincare, haircare, makeup etc), or a post on my beauty routine? Maybe I'll do a poll over on my Instagram stories. Or alternatively, you can let me know if you quite frankly don't care and don't want one ;) haha.
This post is not an ad and in no way affiliated by REN Skincare. All views and images in this post are my own and please also know that I will only recommend beauty products to you if I use them myself, if they work for me and if they are not bad for you.
Part of me is actually quite shocked that I am even writing this blog post; as it's not something I ever thought that I would be discussing in the public domain.
For three years now, I have had Psoriasis. For those of you who are not aware of what this is, Psoriasis is an auto-immune disease which means your skin cells in certain areas reproduce every 24 hours, instead of their normal cycle, meaning there is a build up of skin on these patches. It is stress related and can get much worse the more you are stressed out.
Mine first 'came out' when I was 18 and had just started uni, and at the time I was the most stressed I had ever been in my life up until that point (uni hits you like a tonne of bricks, literally).
In a way, I wasn't really surprised either, as my mum has been living with it for 40 years - so I was well aware of the skin condition before mine developed. Compared to my mum, I actually feel really lucky - she tells me every day how she feels Psoriasis has partly 'ruined her life', and how sad it makes her feel. She spent a lot of her childhood and teenage years in and out of St. John's Hospital for Diseases of the Skin (currently now shut down and has been turned into the slug and lettuce pub just off of Leicester Square, lol) having numerous different treatments, sometimes staying in there for weeks at a time. Different treatments included being bathed in Sulphur Soap, smothered in different steroids, and standing in a special UV machine for an hour every day. All of which worked; however at the time were impossible to continue outside of hospital, meaning the Psoriasis would just come back angrier than before. As my mum's Psoriasis first developed when she was 11, she still tells me about how she was plagued by others for it at school, and to this day she still tries to buy clothes that cover it. It makes me sad that my mum still feels uncomfortable wearing a bikini on the beach. Although it is not covering her entire body, the patches are still noticeable, and she still feels that people stare at it.
I mentioned in the paragraph before that I feel lucky compared to my mum, and this is because I have a lot less of it than she does, in much more manageable areas too. At present, mine is limited to Plaque Psoriasis on both of my knees, whereas my mum currently has it on both elbows, the backs and inner parts of her thighs, and under her breasts. The thing with Psoriasis is that it tends to have a mind of its own - it comes and goes as it wants, and pops up randomly wherever it wants.
Oh - and it's not curable yet because scientists still aren't 100% sure what the actual cause is. But, it is treatable.
Say hello to the Philips BlueControl:
This machine is the "world's first wearable blue LED light therapy" for the treatment of Psoriasis, and retails at £349 with a 90 day money back guarantee if the product doesn't work for you.
This technology differs from that has been used in hospitals for years as a treatment for Psoriasis; as the machine uses innovative blueLED light which contains no UV, making it safe to use. You are able to strap it to the affected areas, so that it won't hinder you from carrying on your normal daily routine/duties.
Below on the left are pictures of the Psoriasis on both myself and my mum before we started the Philips BlueControl treatment, and on the right the Psoriasis 2 weeks into using the treatment every day:
As you can see from the before and after pictures above, within 2 weeks the redness on the treated areas on my knees has been significantly reduced, and my mums elbows have faded to a more pinky colour.
It is important to remember that everyones Psoriasis is different, and not all will have the same results in the same time frame. Philips recommend using the product for at least 4 weeks to be able to see a significant improvement, and obviously those reading this with Psoriasis will know that there is no quick fix and that it takes time.
Just like me, I want to encourage YOU to #TakeTheChallenge and challenge your usual Psoriasis treatment. If you have been using the same treatment for years, chances are your body has already got used to it, lowering the effect it has on you. If you try something new today, chances are it might have a positive effect on you for the better.
You can purchase your own BlueControl Machine, as well as read other reviews here on the official Philips website.
Please note that this is a sponsored post in collaboration with Philips, however all results, reviews and opinions are of my own personal experiences and thoughts.
Why it's healthy to change your surroundings, and how you can have the perfect skin wherever you are
I do believe that there is no experience in life more valuable than travelling and exploring new cultures.
But exploring these new destinations can have an effect on your skin too - and you would normally have no idea.
Without realising it, your skin can become clogged, dried out and stressed - but you don't have to let that affect your adventures anymore.
Social media fashion mogul Chiara Ferragni teamed up with SK-II and National Geographic for their 'Face The Wild' campaign, to take a trek through the Anza Borrego desert and show you how she fights the affects of skin dehydration, and how she fights all of this with SK-II's Facial Treatment Essence. Check out the video for yourself below!
If this product can work in one of the driest places on earth, then what does that tell you?
Forget about packing 2 face creams, 3 night creams and 4 oils in your toiletries bag... you only need one product now.
Your travelling experiences eating fresh coconuts and mangoes by the sea will be so much richer if you keep your skin in good health too!
Let me know what YOU think of the campaign below and what your secret is to keeping your skin in good condition!
Please note that this is a sponsored post with SK-II.
A couple of weeks back, myself and other bloggers attended a fabulous Charlie & The Chocolate Factory afternoon tea at the One Aldwych Hotel, organised by The Blogger Programme.
Upon arrival, we were seated and asked to choose a drink of our choice from the menu (champagne or Charlie cocktail). The Charlie cocktail is a concoction presented in a little glass tea pot with dry ice.
The afternoon tea itself is presented as an array of assorted finger sandwiches (my personal fave was the cucumber on tomato bread), along with a mini quiche and some other savoury bites. There is also a vegan or gluten free menu and we found the staff very accommodating for this!
Now for the sweet part... everyone's favourite.
The main attraction of the afternoon tea - rhubarb and custard candy floss, accompanied by lemon meringue pots, cake pops and milkshake.
The hotel itself is stunning and the perfect location in central London to enjoy a catch up over an afternoon tea - it's just around the corner from Covent Garden at about 3 minutes walking distance.
I loved meeting the girls and it's so nice to meet people that you just click with! The staff, including the chef who came out to greet us, were extremely pleasant and helpful and I know I for one will definitely be returning ;)
A few weeks back now, I went for my first session of laser hair removal on my underarms at Pulse Light Clinic.
I have waited a few weeks to do this post, purely so I can see the full effects of my first treatment - which now I can share with you guys!
Pulse Light Clinic is a leading UK specialist centre based near Tottenham Court Road, specialising in laser treatments including laser hair removal, tattoo removal and scar removal.
And let me tell you... LASER HAIR REMOVAL IS A GODSEND!!!
If you are annoyingly hairy like me, you will know the embarrassment of forgetting to shave your underarms all too well. All you have to do is lift up your arm, and BAM, it's there.
Except... I don't have this problem anymore! It is LIFE CHANGING.
Before your first session, you will attend a free consultation at the treatment centre where you will fill out a form and be assessed by a specialist. This will enable the specialists to determine a treatment plan for you (i.e. how many treatments you will need, the strength of laser needed, or if you are unsuitable etc). All of this is based upon your skin pigment and hair colour/thickness. Whilst at the consultation, you will also have a patch test to test for any adverse reactions.
Prior to arriving for your first session, you must make sure you are freshly shaved on the area of treatment. Laser hair removal works best on freshly shaven areas so that it is able to reach the follicles straight away. Wearing fake tan is also a no-go and avoid wearing deodorant on the treatment day if possible (although I know sometimes this can be unavoidable, so if not this is not a problem as it can be wiped off before treatment).
During the treatment, you must wear the protective goggles provided so that the laser beam does not damage your eyes.
I have an extremely low tolerance of pain (embarrassing, soz) so I literally find everything painful, however I actually did find this bearable. If you are like me, then I would recommend chewing a piece of gum whilst the treatment is being done as it really helped me, but you can also use numbing cream beforehand if you wish. (This is coming from someone that could only use an epilady for less than 5 seconds before screaming at it, and eventually got my actual hair caught in it... don't ask.)
The pain itself basically just feels like an elastic band being pinged at the area you are having treated, and where there is more hair then it feels a little more painful. For example, with the underarm, it doesn't hurt around the edges but hurts more in the middle where there is more hair. But once the treatment is over then so is the pain, it doesn't last. Over all I would say each arm took between 2-5 minutes so I was done within 10 minutes. Lunch break treatment perhaps?
Afterwards, you are told to only shave the area if needbe, DO NOT pluck it as the hairs will grow back thick and fast if you do.
I had my first session 4-5 weeks ago now, and I have only had to shave once. ONCE! And that was one week after the treatment. I'm not even close to needing to shave as the hair literally has not grown back. Not even a shadow.
Do you even know how much of a godsend this is to me? It's a bloody miracle!!
I am due to go back for my second session this week, so there will be a follow up post for that in a few weeks, which will include more information and details, and more photos.
Watch this space!
This one is for the indecisive ladies of the world!
If you're forever chopping and changing your make-up trying to find that perfect 'one' (don't worry, we've all been there - especially looking back at some make up DISASTERS), then I have composed a list for you of beauty things that I love. (obviously I don't wear every single thing on this list every day, this is just a list of things I use regularly but chop and change between daily)
Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua - this is really light and for every day use.
Charlotte Tilbury Magic Foundation - can be worn every day if you like a heavier coverage.
Rimmel Argan Oil Mascara followed by Maybelline Volume Express Waterproof.
Manny MUA palette
Charlotte Tilbury - Colour Chameleon in Amber Haze
Charlotte Tilbury - Beach Stick in Moon Beach
Chanel - Les Beiges Bronzer
Benefit - Watts Up
Charlotte Tilbury - Wonderglow
Kylie Cosmetics - lip liner in Candy K
Kylie Cosmetics - lip gloss in Literally
Charlotte Tilbury - Matte Revolution in 'Very Victoria'
If you're here, you're probably wondering what my thoughts are on the Jivesse Collagen & 24 Karat Gold Face Mask, and whether it really works. So if you're thinking of taking the plunge and want to find out whether it's worth it - I have good news for you. It is.
I have to admit, when I first heard about this product, I was skeptical. I mean, who wouldn't be? Women have been trying to find the answer to visibly lifted, tightened and firmer skin for YEARS (the natural way, without having work done). The part that really swayed me though, was the price tag and the stockists. Retailing at £125 for a pack of 5, you can find it at Harrods, Selfridges or on the Jivesse website. Now I know for sure, that such well respected retailers like Harrods and Selfridges, wouldn't sell this product if it wasn't any good. If it's good enough for them, then it sure as hell is good enough for me.
The first night of my trip, I decided to try it out late before going to bed. I was exhausted from the early start and looked super tired, so I cleansed my face by removing my makeup and left it to dry for about 5 mins.
Once my face dried, I went and removed the mask from the packaging before use. I was actually incredibly surprised as to how moist the mask actually was, there was a lot of excess moisture and liquid which I was pleased about - I sort of expected it to be like every other mask and be pretty dried out.
As you can see from the picture below, it was covered in flakes of 24 karat gold. This I was also pleased about, as prior to opening it, I didn't expect it to have much gold in it at all.
I pressed the mask on to my face, and made sure it covered the whole area. I then left it on for 15-20 mins. It had a very cooling and soothing sensation when it was on my face, which made my skin feel instantly hydrated. I felt so relaxed and as it was late at night, I very nearly fell asleep with it on! Once I had removed it, I did what the instructions suggested - which was to not wipe any left over moisture off of your face, but to gently massage your face instead. I did this for 5 mins and then went to sleep.
When I woke up the next morning, I felt really tired because I hadn't caught up on much sleep from the day before. I was expecting to look in the mirror and look like a zombie, BUT my skin looked so awake! There was no trace of any bags under my eyes, my skin looked really bright, vibrant and refreshed, with zero sign of any cold, chapped, dull skin. With regards to tightness, it didn't give my skin that really tight, itchy sensation that some face masks can give you - but rather a youthful plumpness to it.
The results made doing my makeup so much quicker and easier, j didn't even need to wear highlighter!
I was so pleased with the results, that I decided to redo this routine every night before bed for the duration of my trip.
I really did feel this helped me to feel so much more hydrated and refreshed for the whole trip - especially when you're spending 12+ in a busy city with barely any chill time.
On the whole, I really would recommend these products to you, and I also 100% think these are a great investment, especially to your every day routine. Even if you don't have much time to dedicate to looking after your skin, this is a quick 15 minute fix that will leave you feeling like you've spent an hour nurturing your skin. A little goes a long way where your skin is involved!
You can find the face mask on Jivesse's website here: https://www.jivesse.com/shop/jivesse-collagen-gold-mask/
If you have any more questions, feel free to ask!
Please note this blog post was done in collaboration with Jivesse, but all photos and opinions are my own.
A while ago now, I was invited to Sopwell House for the day to try their afternoon tea and have a tour of the hotel.
Situated in St. Albans, it's approximately a 30 minute train journey from St. Pancras International in central London, and a short 10 minute drive from St. Albans train station.
(Be aware though that if you are travelling in by train from St. Pancras that contactless payment/Oyster cards are NOT accepted at St. Albans station and you will have to buy a ticket before travel. Even though I asked at the St. Pancras information desk whether contactless payment was accepted and I was told yes, which I then found out the hard way when I had to pay a fine, that it wasn't!)
The afternoon tea itself was particularly enjoyable, and we opted for the champagne afternoon tea. This included a glass of champagne each, a tea of your choice, 4 finger sandwiches per person, 2 scones pp with clotted cream and Tiptree Jam (this really made me happy, a little taste of home!), as well as an assortment of cakes and macaroons to share.
One thing that I found a really nice touch was that the staff were always offering us more sandwiches, scones and cakes etc. Sometimes (being the pig that I am) I want more sandwiches to balance out the sweet and savoury, but feel a pain in the bum to ask for more. The fact that these were offered to us made it much more relaxing!
The staff also could not be faulted. We were served by two very kind gentlemen who could not do enough for us.
After eating, we were given a tour of Sopwell House and the grounds of the hotel.
The rooms took my breath away - particularly the outside "Mews" area where you are able to have more of a maisonette style apartment with a hot tub in your own private "garden" area.
This whole area of the hotel can also be hired out for events such as wedding parties, so the whole entourage can stay in one area.
As well as hiring out parts of the hotel for wedding parties, the hotel also boasts a number of events rooms which have moveable walls, creating one large events room if need be.
Sopwell House has been a particular favourite for footballing events, with the England team having resided there on a number of occasions.
There is something for everyone at Sopwell House though - there is a full spa with treatment facilities, a gym, and a swimming pool. There is also a golf range near by for all you golf fanatics - hosts to the Ryder Cup!
Overall, if you are looking for a quiet, peaceful sanctuary to get away from the hustle and bustle of London, then this is the place for you. It is complete luxury in a scenic setting, and you don't have to travel far outside of London to get it.
Prices start from £154 per night for a superior suite, to £250+ per night for a Mews Suite.
For more information, you can check out the Sopwell House website here.
For a few months now, I have been testing out the SmoothSkin Bare IPL hair removal device on my legs.
SmoothSkin is a device which utilises light energy, flashing at 100 times per minute and aims to eventually replace your shaving routine.
For those interested in the technical side, a description from the SmoothSkin website of how the device uses light energy for hair removal can be found below:
"The light energy is transferred through the skin’s surface and is absorbed by the melanin present in the hair shaft.
There is no set time length for how long the treatments will take. No one person is the same and the time length for seeing results is all dependent on hair colour and thickness. These devices can also only be used on certain skin tones, so before purchasing I would recommend checking to see if you are suitable for using the device by clicking the link at the bottom of this post.
When using, you can either use in a gliding motion or a stamping motion. I found that the gliding motion was a much more time saving method as well as being more effective, however I would recommend either turning your head away from the product or wearing sunglasses whilst in use, as the flashes are very bright.
The SmoothSkin device is always used on cleanly shaven legs, so that no new hairs can get in to the light and cause damage to the product.
When using the device, I found it to be totally pain free (which is a miracle for me!), and it literally just felt like a warm/hot sensation on my legs (the more sensitive areas of my legs tended to feel hotter). SmoothSkin is the perfect device for those who are looking for a more permanent solution to hair removal but cannot stand the pain of an epilady device (don't worry, I've tried one and believe me the pain was unbearable, as well as the fact I also got my hair caught in it). The particular device I have tried retails between £170-£200, which may seem a little steep to some, however it is an investment and a one off price, as you will then be able to use the device as you please.
Unfortunately, this particular device hasn't really had much of an effect on me yet - however, I'm still trying with it so I am hopeful it will in the end. Like I mentioned previously in this post, it has a different affect on each individual and this by no way means that it won't have an affect on you!
If you'd like to read more or purchase a device for yourself, then you can visit this link here.
Disclaimer: I did receive this product in exchange for a review, however all of my reviews are 100% honest and completely my own thoughts.