Duty Free Treats

I thought I’d share with you the duty free treats I picked up in the airport last week.

Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Essentials

I bought this one whim – partly because I was caught up in the holiday spirit and partly because every girl should own this kit, and some boys too 😉 I make no secret of the fact  I’m a lifelong lover of Elizabeth Arden’s Eight Hour Cream Skin Protectant, but I’ve never explored the range further… until now.

This pack contains the following products:

  • Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Skin Protectant – 30ml
  • Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Intensive Moisturising Hand Treatment – 50ml
  • Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Lip Protectant Stick – 3.7g

I fancied the lip protectant as I use the original cream on my lips all the time, so it made sense to have a handy little bullet that’s more user friendly, plus this one has an SPF 15, making it an ideal holiday companion. I wasn’t disappointed – it looks and feels like the regular version, it’s super moisturising and surprisingly didn’t melt in the heat. Now the hand cream, this was a real surprise, it’s one of the best hand creams I’ve used. Incredibly thick, rich and moisturising – Looks like I’ve added another two products to my “can’t live without” list.

Duty Free Price £22 – contents worth over £50

Lancôme Doll Eyes Mascara

I won’t say too much about Doll Eyes right now as I’m planning a full review and some comparisons to other mascaras, but I will say it’s fab and as you can see some the photos, so are the results. It worked well in the heat and humidity too.

Duty Free Price £17.45

Advertisements

Holiday Beauty Essentials

Whether you’re going abroad or just kicking back in your garden, we all love a bit of sun! But with the sun also comes frizz, burns and melting make up. Here are my top tips and beauty products to help you channel your inner beach babe.

Skincare

 Suncream (Obviously!)

Suncream is sooo important – if you want to tan you’ve got to do it carefully and gradually – the lobster look looks good on no one when you’re older, who wants to look like Donatella Versace?

If you’re going abroad go armed with a range of factors. I normally start on 30, then drop to 15 where I can (gone are the days of, oh I’ll just use a factor 6 oil). I use a separate, non-greasy high factor on my face.

Boots’ Soltan family collection is really good value offering 3 factors and an aftersun for £12.99. I love a high factor sun lotion that is non-greasy, absorbs quickly and doesn’t block pores like Piz Buin In Sun Lotion SPF 30, available from Cheapsmells

Lipbalm, preferably with SPF

So many people forget to protect their lips, but if you want to rock that colour popping lipstick at night you need to protect against chapped, burnt lips – SIMPLE!

Moisturiser

After a days sunbathing you need a great moisturiser to lock that tan in! I’ve never know if it’s better to use after sun or a regular body moisturiser, but I’ve tried both and got the same results. I’ve always been a big fan of Palmer’s Cocoa Butter and Soap & Glory’s Righteous Butter – unfortunately so are FLIES! In Egypt last year I stuck to Soltan aftersun with insect repellent, which was still very moisturising. AVOID aftersuns that market themselves as a tan prolonger. If it contains self tanning ingredient, I find it doesn’t mix well with the natural tan and leads to premature pealing.

And I’d never go on holiday without Elizabeth Arden’s Eight hour cream – for burns, dry skin and chapped lips. Keep it close during the flight – it’s the perfect antidote to the moisture zapping, dehydrating aeroplanes. 

Make Up

I love holiday make up. You can take all your current routines and rules and throw them out the window cos if you can’t experiment in a foreign country where no one knows you, when can you! Even if you’re not feeling so daring, the heat and humidity forces you to change it up anyway.

I do think holiday make up should be kept to a minimum, not least because those pesky airlines get stingier on luggage allowance every year, but who wants to waste their time applying the wall paint (only for it to slide off during that first cocktail) and with your bronzed holiday glow you shouldn’t need as much, right??? I wouldn’t bother with it during the day, but if you have to make sure it’s waterproof and opt for cream products over powder.

Cream Blush – my number one holiday hero!

A cream blush is great for adding a pop of colour on the cheeks without clogging the pores. In the heat they last longer and look fresher. I love Mac Blushcreme in LadyBlush (read review) and Stila’s Convertible colours – both can be used on the lips too.  Tip – keep them in the fridge so avoid theit textured becoming too liquefied.

A Multiple Stick

Multi taskers are really all you need for beach glamour.  I love Topshop’s Cheeks in Prism, an all-in-one shimmer stick, which is super-easy to apply and looks lush on any skin tone. It can be used on checks, lips and eyes or apply in a ‘C’ shape around the temples to lift the face and complement a tan.

HOT nail varnish and lipstick

Holidays are the perfect opportunity to sport that bright lipstick you’ve been wanting to try but were too scared to. Try a bright fushia or coral – perfect compliment for a tan. I love Mac’s Girl About Town and Cost Chic.

The same goes for the nails, step out your pale pink comfort zone and reach for something eye popping or sparkly! I might even unlease the Ciate Mohita (aka shrek green) that I received in my Glossybox.

Waterproof mascara

If you can go without, do! If not, whether there’s water involved or not, better make it waterproof. The heat and humidity can be just as damaging – panda eyes is never a good look, especially on a hot summers day… or night.

Hair

A salty/touselled/ texturising type spray

You’re on holiday, frizz and waves are inevitable so save time and effort blowdrying, straightening and trying to combat the kink and ride those beach waves. Some type of saltly/touselled/texturising spray will help you look all beachy and fabulous.

I like Umberto Giannini’s grunge glamour tousled salt spray or make your own DIY spray with actual sea water!

Tangle Teezer

I don’t know how I coped without this for so long, home or away. Great for teasing out those sea salty tangles without breaking hair.

And don’t forget your toothbrush!

Bargain Beauty Buys

With the summer sales in full swing I’ve traipsed around the shops and trawled through hundreds of online pages  to bring you some of the best beauty bargains out there .

Marks and Spencer

Not one of my regular beauty haunts, I must admit but whilst browsing in the home department I wondered along (like a moth to a flame) to the beauty sale. Stock was limited but there’s some bargains to be had – this is what I picked up

Lazy Spa – Shape up contouring gel Was £6 now £1.50

This all over intensive body contouring gel contains CellActive® – Shape and witch hazel. Combined with massage, these active ingredients help to firm, tone and reduce the appearance of cellulite. With a beach holiday coming up, it’s got to be worth a go.

Busy But Beautiful Body Shimmer BalmWas £5 now £1.50

Give your skin a subtle luminescence with this sexy scented body balm. I was more attracted to the tin, which you can re-use as a great make-up brush holder or a stylish case for all your beautiful cosmetics, but the balm itself is a lovely highlighter type balm for the body and smells divine.

ASOS

A lot of people don’t realise that ASOS stocks beauty treats, as well as fashion faves. Their ever expanding beauty department includes brands such as GHD, Nails Inc, Illamasqua and Soap and Glory.

There’s some great bargains to be had in their summer sale, here are my top pics…

Nails Inc SS11 Collection Was £25.00 NOW £16.25

Featuring four on-trend colours, ideal for creating this season’s colour-clash nails. Including Wellington Square, a pastel peach inspired by the coral tones at Fendi, Hampstead, a subtle biscuit beige, Queensgate Terrace, a soft cornflower blue and Brook Street, a vivid pinky coral. Inspired by the catwalks and this season’s on-trend colours, they are ideal for creating fashion-forward looks.

Soap & Glory ‘Clear Here’ Oil Control Daily Moisture Lotion 50ml Was £8.20 NOW £4.75

Oil control daily moisture lotion by Soap & Glory. Designed to smooth and protect then skin whilst helping to minimize pore, prevent spots and control shine.

Cheap Smells

Another of my go to online beauty shops – great for cult favourites at discount prices including YSL Touche Eclat and Elizabeth Arden Eight hour cream

I also spotted…

Elizabeth Arden – Color Intrigue Gel Eyeliner and Brush with a whopping 81%off WAS £26 NOW £4.95 Available in Ocean Teal and Brown

Lancome Colour Design Eye shadows from £5.95

Topshop

I picked up a set of 3 lip polishes for just £5 in store – fabulously glossy and available in 3 great colours.

Don’t worry if there’s nothing left in your nearest Topshop, there’s still a few online beauty bargains like Gel EyeLiners, various colours WAS £8, NOW £2

Happy Summer Sales!

My all time TOP 5

Or should I say my long term top 5, cos let’s face it, you never know who, I mean what is around the corner… I’m sure there’s some gems out there I haven’t tried yet.  Now choosing just five is tough, if I’m realistic it’s more like 55, but the following are firmly inducted in my beauty hall of fame….

Givenchy Eyebrow Show

“It’s all about the eyebrows!” Fast becoming my catch phrase because I Love, Love, LOVE eyebrows. This Givenchy pencil has saved my life after my beloved Clinique one was discontinued. I searched for a replacement, testing and buying almost every brow pencil in existence – No7, YSL, Benefit, Rimmel, Lancôme, Mac. It’s been a long and expensive process. You see, I like a good old fashioned pencil, I’m not a fan of these sudo, automatic non-pencil pencils that have popped up everywhere. I don’t like ones that are too creamy, but I do like ones that have a brush on the end. Finally I’ve found the right shade and texture with Givenchy. Just as well since I’ve been going through the painsaking process of growing my eye brows out. As a teenager I fell victim to over-tweezing (something I could wax lyrical about and is best left for another post).  It’s great for filling in the gaps. The powdery texture looks very natural and last all day, plus the brush on the end is great for sculpting.

£15 Available in three shades, I wear Brown

 Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream

This needs little introduction. The cult classic, developed by Ms Arden herself over 70 years ago, has really stood the test of time. If I was stuck on a desert island, this is all I’d need (this and some food, water and wine). It really is a wonder product.  This skincare classic helps to soothe, restore, soften and protect dry or mildly irritated skin. It has so many uses… I apply it to eye brows at night to help hold them in place, it’s fantastic on dry lips and can be dabbed onto cheek and brow bones as a highlighter. I have one in my bedside table and one in my handbag so I’m never without – it lasts and last and lasts too!

50mls approx. £20 Available in various sizes, tubes and pots

Guerlain Terracota Four Season Bronzing Powder

When it comes to bronzers, I’ve played the field a little, but with Guerlain Four Season Bronzing Powder I’ve found my match. The caramel hues are so far away from the orange shades we’re used to. It’s very strongly pigmented so a little goes a long way and the finely milled powder applies like a dream, so smooth and flawless. There’s no glitter or sparkle, yet it’s not too matte, more of a satin finish I’d say. What makes it one of my all time favourites is that the four shades take you through the year, no need to change to a lighter one in the winter or darker in the summer; it’s like a customisable palette. Great for contouring and the lighter shade can be used as a touch up powder. Read full review here.

Available from Debenhams and House of Fraser £46

YSL Touche Eclat

Another that needs little introduction. For years YSL’s iconic Touche Eclat has been the go-to concealer for millions of women around the World. Another multi use product – it’s a highlighter, a concealer, a touch up pen. There are lots of competitors in that market, but for me it’s still unrivalled. A sold member of my beauty hall of fame; there’s a reason that one pen is sold every 10 seconds! 

RRP £24 but dicounted prices on CheapSmells.com

Lancôme Hypnose Mascara


I have been using Lancôme’s mascaras since I was 13. From Defincils, Amplicils, Hypnose and Hypnose drama, it seemed each offering got better and better.  From time to time my eye has wondered (with Benefit Bad Gal, Clinique’s High Impact and Diorshow), but I always return to my faithful Hypnose. For me, the key is in the brush  – it’s just the right size, not too clumpy and no other mascara creates volume like it. It can be layered for maximum impact, doesn’t smudge or clump and lasts all day.  I prefer the standard Hypnose but Hypnose Drama is pretty good too. It also has the royal seal of approval – believed to be Kate Middleton’s wedding mascara of choice.

£20.45

So that’s my top 5, what’s yours?

Mother’s Day Gift Guide

If like me you’ve left it till the last minute (sorry Mum) here’s a few gift ideas guaranteed to make her day.

No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Face Collection £32

Update your Mother’s beauty regime with No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Face Collection. It’s the perfect gift for Mothers Day containing No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Day Cream, Night Cream and Beauty Serum. Currently half price at Boots, £32 and right now spend over £22, receive a free No7 (which you can keep for yourself)… everyone’s a winner.

 

Busy But Beautiful Miracle Manicure Treatment Gift Set M&S £7.50

 

A cute and very retro 5 part set including hand cream, cuticle cream, a nail file and 2 polishes for busy but beautiful Mums.

Elizabeth Arden Centenary Eight Hour Cream Limited Edition Jar 30ml £18 John Lewis

A timeless classic, perhaps the best multi taking product ever. It’s a moisturiser, a lip balm, a soother, healer and wrinkle rescuer all rolled into one. This product’s been a staple in women’s make up bags for years, and this limited edition jar is hard to resist. Infact, I’m ordering two. Right now save 10% at John Lewis.

Or the iconic, and fail sake… YSL Touche Eclat

I haven’t come across a woman yet that doesn’t worship at its alter. It’s a little pricey so treat the woman in your life that won’t always treat herself.

All that’s left to do is pop down M&S for the dine.