UK Beauty and Lifestyle Blog

May 31, 2013

Guest Post: My Top Face Mask Picks

hydrate deep cleanse and exfoliating options

Up today is another guest post, this time over on Shang's wonderful blog, The Feminine Crusade, all about my top face mask picks. Cleansing, moisturising and exfoliating, all the boxes are ticked in this selection and each of them come with my recommendation! I hope you give the post a read [link here], I love face masks and I had a lot to say about these ones. If you do give it a read then I hope you enjoy it!

Do you have a favourite face mask?


May 30, 2013

Discovering Ginvera: Green Tea Nude Cover BB Cream and Grean Tea Exfoliating Marvel Gel

It might just be me (I think I must have just been out of the loop) but I personally hadn't heard much about Ginvera before, out of the blue, I found myself with the opportunity to try out and review a couple of their products. I was very kindly sent sample sizes of their award winning Green Tea Nude Cover BB Cream and their Green Tea Exfoliating Marvel Gel. In a nutshell, I'm impressed with both of these products.  However, the details are really important so I'll elaborate on why I've enjoyed using them below. Let's start with the Green Tea Exfoliating Marvel Gel.

The above photo shows what the Green Tea Exfoliating Marvel Gel looks like when first squeezed out of the tube. This is the amount that I would use across my entire face, massaging it onto my skin for a minute or two before washing it off with warm water. No word of a lie, from the first time I used this I loved it. I haven't had much success with chemical exfoliaters before but this one is just perfect for sensitive skin / skin prone to redness. I find that after I use this my skin is beautifully soft (from an excellent exfoliation) with not even a hint of redness in sight - which I find is always the case when I use a manual exfoliater. It also promises that after use pores will look more 'refined' and I'm certain that it has had this effect on the worst of my pores which after only a couple of weeks of use is impressive. The full size product has an RRP of £22* (available at Cult Beauty or directly from Janiro) and when I have available funds I'm going to be picking it up. It's a wonderful product and I'd highly recommend it. 

The Green Tea Nude Cover BB Cream is of Asian origin, hailing from Singapore, and is my first foray into a non-western BB cream. Initially, it didn't win me over. As you can see from my swatches, this one-colour-fits-all formula looks a shade or two too dark for me. However, its pretty dreamy to blend and it's liquid (although not all that thin) formula allows you to apply it pretty lightly (which is perfect for me as I like to wear BB creams to even out my complexion rather than to give coverage). Once blended out the colour is passable, and if summer sunshine ever appears then the light tan I usually gain will leave me with skin than will more easily be able to wear this colour. 

You might ask why I bother to make such an effort to get the colour to work? Well, ladies and gentlemen, the formula is nice. I already have a 'go-to' BB cream, a drugstore offering, and as much as I like it there is little comparison when it comes to the feel of the product on my face. The Green Tea Nude Cover BB Cream feels moisturising without being heavy or aggravating my oily t-zone and it wore remarkably well on my skin for something verging on the dewy end of the spectrum. Added benefits are the high quality of its ingredients: it contains antioxidants, vitamin C and has SPF 30. Overall, I really like this BB cream especially the way it feels and how it wears but given the colour matching issues I don't know if I would purchase it full size. I think I'm going to wait and see if I'm going to get any sun this year, if so then this would definitely compliment my summer make-up. I'd highly recommend giving it a try though, especially if you think the colour will work for you (or if, like me, you don't mind blending it out). You can purchase this from Janiro for £20* (for 25ml) or £26* (for 40ml)

Have you tried either of these products? Do you prefer chemical exfoliaters to manual ones?


May 25, 2013

May Beauty Wishlist

Mua Nail Polish in Bold Blue and Mua Nail Polish in Frozen Yoghurt 
5 Soap and Glory Hand Food

What's on your beauty wishlist this month?


May 23, 2013

REVIEW: L'Occitane's Angelica Ultra Matte Fluid

skin fix for oily skin or tzone moisturiser that reduces shine
effective product for reduction in shine on skin or t zone
super effective skin fix for oiliness and shine on t zone

I've been using L'Occitane's Angelica Ultra Matte Fluid for about six weeks now as part of my ongoing mission to find a product that really helps combat my oily, oily t-zone. Ladies and Gentlemen, let me introduce you to what I can only call a real stand-out gem of a product.

During my exam period I've been waking up at about 6.30 am to get into university to begin studying at 7.30am. I then wouldn't normally come home until 8pm. On these days, although I haven't been wearing as many products, I have been wearing a minimum of  foundation, concealer and mascara every day.  My library's environment isn't exactly the most pleasant, especially in this warmer weather. It's a lot like being inside a large greenhouse. Anyway, the relevance of this is that it's allowed me to test the limits of my skincare products. It's very clearly allowed to me see the different that applying this moisturiser makes to my skin. 
[I do also wear The Body Shop's Tea Tree Pore Minimiser as my primer (full review here) but I have been doing so since January so the effectiveness of this moisturiser can still be tested against others that I have used- I have also deliberately not worn the primer on certain days so I am able to make more specific claims.]

L'Occitane's  Angelica Ultra Matte Fluid is a cloudy, matte-gel (closest I can get to describing it!) that you only need to use very sparingly. The pump bottle stops any product wastage and I tend to use one to two pumps to cover my entire t-zone. I don't use this on my cheeks as they are dry rather than oily, on them I use L'Occitane's Ultra Gentle Moisturiser. The products soaks into my t-zone quickly, taking about one minute, and then you are free to apply your primer or make-up. I tend to use this with The Body Shop's Tea Tree Pore Minimser as this is a very effective primer for oily skin. Together, these too products keep my oil at bay from circa 7am until at least 4pm. For me, this is a real achievement as usually my make-up would begin to slip at about midday if I only wore the primer without a mattifying moisturiser. Nine hours almost completely oil free is not something to be sniffed at!

On days when I haven't used any primer and apply my foundation straight onto bare skin I've found that the effects of the moisturiser help keep my skin matte until 1-3pm, which is still a very good result for my skin. The lasting time has been affected by which foundation I use. My Revlon foundations, Nearly Naked and my ColorStay foundation for oily skin, have lasted an extra hour or two over my Body Shop Moisture Foundation.

All in all I've found that this has been an excellent product for improving the appearance of an oily t-zone, in summer my skin is naturally more oily but this is an every-day use product for me. It isn't cheap though and comes in at £26*. Mine was gifted to me for Christmas but when I finish it I do plan on repurchasing it as it is incredibly effective and I think it makes a lot of difference to my appearance. 

If the price of this is too steep for you then I would still recommend The Body Shop's Seaweed Day Cream, which for the price is excellent value for money. But if you want a really long lasting result then I do think that L'Occitane's Angelica Ultra Matte Fluid is worth it. 


May 21, 2013

New MUA Nail Polish in Fever Red and Plum Noir (Review and Swatches)

These nail polishes are available on the Superdrug website for £1

I've been hearing a lot about MUA's new rebranded nail polishes, mainly because of how obviously the bottles are a budget copy of Essie's nail polishes. However, as much as I hate the idea of companies trying to rip one another off, I have to admit that for MUA these new bottles are a massive step up from their old packaging. It makes the polishes look a lot more desirable, to my eye anyway. I think they look like they could be described by the word 'dinky'- small and cute. And for the same old price of just £1 I felt that even if the formula was the same I wanted a couple in my collection.

I settled on two shades, 'Fever Red' and 'Plum Noir'. Both of these colours really stood out to me on the shelves as despite looking like more autumnal shades there is a brightness to them that for me makes them  seem wearable all year round. 'Fever  Red' is my favourite of the two colours and is a gorgeous raspberry shade that takes two-three coats to become opaque and streak free. 'Plum Noir' is a mid-toned purple shade that I think needs three coats to be completely opaque and streak free. I'm actually planning on picking some glitter polishes up next month and maybe using then in a nail look along with these MUA polishes-  maybe a glitter tip or glitter gradient or something like that - just to make them a little bit more fun to wear.

I know a lot of people don't like the MUA polishes but I've owned a pink shade (which is unfortunately at my family home in London so I don't know it's name) but on my nails, with a base and top coat, it often lasts about five days without any chips.  So, granted that these polishes aren't super shiny or apply in just two coats, if you have a good base and top coat they really are good value for money if you like to only wear a shade a couple of times and don't want to 'invest' in an expensive polish. 

Have you tried any of MUA's nail polishes? What do you think about their new bottles?


May 19, 2013

A Truly Fantastic Bargain Buy: Collection Shimmer Shades

I'm wearing the lightest shade as a contour along with the peach coloured blush on my cheeks
(also, please excuse my blotchy skin- my final exam is tomorrow!  The stress is not doing my skin any favours)

If you've been looking for a really affordable drugstore product to contour your face with then Collection Shimmer Shades is a product that should be on your radar. There are four shades, all of which I'm going to describe in relation to my skin tone- there's a very light contour  (perfect on very pale skin), a medium contour (perfect for a more dramatic contour on pale skin), a dark contour (unwearable as such for me, but great for me as an eye shadow) and a peach blush which is gorgeous used with the contour shades or alone.

I have fallen in love with two of the shades, the lightest contour and the peach blush! Together they work absolutely perfectly to shape my face whilst still being really subtle. I think as my skin gets a little bit more colour over the summer I can start wearing the medium contour shade more often. At the moment it looks a little bit stark if I wear it during the day but is great when buffed out to look more subtle and worn in the evenings. I can't make the darkest contour shade work on my skin, but I've worn this on my eyelids a few times and with a primer it lasts all day. On my cheeks I can apply the contour and blush in the morning and when I get home in the evening it's still going strong on my cheeks. The longevity of the product is fantastic!

Also, because there's a choice of shades it makes it perfect for a rage of skintones, so if you're not as pale as me don't worry! The medium contour is likely to work well for you (it isn't at all orange!) and if you're a lot less pale then the darkest contour might just be perfect for you! You could then use the lightest or medium contours as base colours for your eye lids. All in all, I think it's a really great product because it will work  for so many people in a lot of different ways.

You can find Collection's Shimmer Shades in Boots for £4.19 (link here).

Do you like the look of these shades? What do you use to contour your face?

Follow me via: [Bloglovin[She Said Beauty] [Twitter[Facebook]

May 18, 2013

REVIEW: Eve of St. Agnes Revive and Renew Refining Bamboo Exfoliating Polish

I often struggle to find an exfoliater that is both effective and yet gentle enough not to aggravate my skin. I've succeeded only once before [review here] and today I finally have a second product to share with you!

I was very kindly sent this Exfoliating Polish to review and I didn't initially know what to expect, other than that it was recommended for my skin type which is combination. When it arrived it was in a really gorgeous glass jar and looked so luxurious and I wasn't at all disappointed when I opened it as the product really lives up to the packaging. It's a thick white cream with really tiny exfoliating particles in it and they provide really effective exfoliation but they're sparse enough throughout the cream to not be too harsh on the skin. These tiny particles are actually microdermabrasion grade bamboo particles. The cream they're in feels incredibly soft and nourishing and it contains shea butter and rosehip oil (famously good for red and sensitive skin) and these ingredients really help the product achieve a balance between exfoliation and nourishment.

A little bit of this Exfoliating Polish goes a long way. In the last photo above I've shown about as much would be needed if you only wanted to exfoliate your t-zone, if you wanted to use it all over your face I would double that. I've used this on my cheeks, which are usually incredibly sensitive and slightly on the dry side, and it felt just as comfortable being used on them as it did on my skin or nose. This is a rare occurrence and made me take instant notice of this product as something that was going to be pretty special in my skin care routine. After you use the Exfoliating Polish you're left with the smoothest skin, for me it was really a great improvement between before and after use. I noticed the difference right away and the following day when I applied my make-up I noticed that my skin was visibly more even. 

The Eve of St Agnes website [link here] describes this as a product for sensitive skin, and I would agree with that. The ingredients are just all round really great and I'm really impressed with Eve of St. Agnes. They're a new brand on my radar but they're definitely one to take note of. This exfoliater costs £18* for 50ml and comes in a really gorgeous box and glass jar. I think any of this brand's products would make a good gift and if you have sensitive skin then I'd definitely recommend it as my experience with the product has been thoroughly positive.

Do you like the sound of this Exfoliating Polish? What's your favourite exfoliater?


May 16, 2013

REVIEW: The Body Shop's Camomile Gentle Eye Make-Up Remover

make up remover for sensitive skin that softens cleanses and conditions not effective on waterproof mascara
The fullsize 250ml bottle costs £8 and is available here

I received The Body Shop's Camomile Gentle Eye Make-Up  Remover as a free gift with a make-up purchase quite a while ago now. It took me ages to get around to using it but when I did I found that I really liked it. I have quite sensitive skin and although the skin around my eyes doesn't feel especially sensitive I like to use gentle products on that area as I think it's better for my skin in the long term.

The Body Shop's Chamomile Gentle Eye Make-Up Remover is clear liquid which works best when you apply it onto a cotton pad and then gently sweep it across your lids. It works brilliants at removing eyeshadow, eye liner and non-waterproof mascara. I found that one cotton pad was usually enough to remove all of my day to day eye make up. I did, however, try using this all over my face and found that it was very effective at removing all my make-up- that includes, foundation, concealer, blush, highlighter etc. It didn't have a problem getting these sorts of products off my skin. 

I would certainly agree that it lives up to it's name as it definitely felt gentle to use and I didn't find that it irritated my eyes or skin in any way. I felt comfortable using it everyday and would highly recommend it to those of you who don't wear waterproof mascara. It didn't remove my waterproof mascara from MaxFactor (it is a bit of a devil to get off) but I expected that as other gentle make-up removers have also struggled with that particular mascara.

The fullsize product is 250ml which I think would last you at least a couple of months making it's RRP of £8 (or less if you take advantage of one of The Body Shop's regular offers) very good value for money. I'm almost certainly going to repurchase this in a month or so but I am currently trialing the Body Shop's Camomile Waterproof Eye Make-Up Remover so look out for a review of that next month.

Have you tried The Body Shop's Camomile Eye Make-Up Remover before? What do you use to take off your make-up?


May 14, 2013

FOTD: No Brush Needed!

So the other day, after finally finding time to wash my make-up brushes, I realised that I had to go out and that  I wanted to apply some make-up. I've become incredibly reliant on my make-up brushes for applying my make-up, it's been a ridiculously long time since I applied make-up completely brush free! So I challenged myself to coming up with a simple, day-time look that didn't need any brushes.

The products I ended up picking to use were the following:

Etat Pur Radiant Complexion Care*
Collection Concealer
The Body Shop Brow Definer in Blonde & Auburn
MaxFactor Clump Defy Mascara
MaxFactor's 24hr Colour Tattoo in On and On Bronze
Maybelline Dream Touch Blush in Apricot
Revlon Kissable Balm Stain in Honey

Etat Pur's Radiant Complexion Care feels like a very thin tinted moisturiser, and on me it's a little bit too pink. However, with a good concealer to help with areas that need a little extra coverage, you can really blend it out with your fingers so that it evens your complexion while still leaving your skin looking really natural. The concealer I use is Collection's Lasting Perfection Concealer in 'light'- I really need the shade 'fair' but it is never in stock whenever I go looking for it! This is really easy to blend with your fingers which makes it really handy for on-the-go.  The Body Shop's Brow Definer is my go-to eyebrow product for natural looking eyebrows and I use it pretty much every day. MaxFactor's Clump Defy Mascara has been my mascara of choice for a couple of months now (it's almost time to bin this tube... sob). The colour is intensely black and the wand makes it really easy to build up volume in your lashes so it's perfect for both daytime and evening make-up looks. On my eyes, I also used a touch of Maybelline's 24hr Color Tattoo in On and On Bronze for just a little bit more definition. I prefer applying this without a brush anyway so this was one of the first products I thought about using. For a little bit of colour on my cheeks I dabbed on some of Maybelline's Dream Touch Blush in Apricot. I dab it on and then blend it out so that it isn't too stark, and the great thing about this blush is that it's pretty subtle but it is buildable so it's pretty versatile. Lastly, I applied one layer of Revlon's Kissable Lip Balm Stain in Honey to my lips. It's a couple of shades darker than my natural  lip colour which makes it a lovely subtle colour that's just makes my lips stand out a little bit more. 

The finished look....

You can see that the coverage of Etat Pur's Radiant Complexion Care is pretty light but it's perfect for days when you don't want to wear too much make-up- I'd just prefer it if it was a smidgen more yellow!

I hope you liked this FOTD, it proved to me that I don't NEED my make-up brushes but it also showed me how much I rely on them everyday. I think that if you do use your brushes lots and lots then buying good quality brushes is really important. 

Are you reliant on your make-up brushes? Do you think you could come  up with a FOTD without them?


May 13, 2013

REVIEW: Neal's Yard Remedies Bee Lovely Hand Cream

This gorgeous hand cream came my way as a magazine freebie a month or two ago. As my subscribers probably know, I am a big fan of L'Occitane's hand creams and I genuinely didn't think many other hand creams would ever come close. However, Neal's Yard Remedies Bee Lovely Hand Cream is absolutely gorgeous. It's thick but still fast absorbing, and it's got a gorgeous floral-citrus scent rather than smelling of honey (which from  the packaging I assumed would be the scent) which I think is incredibly summer appropriate. The tube is plastic so unlike L'Occitane's  metal tubes you wont get any holes appearing when you try and squeeze your money's worth out of the tube. Also, can we take a minute to appreciate how lovely the packaging looks? I love products that are brightly coloured for aesthetic reasons as well as that they help me find them more quickly in my room or handbag. And the bees! I think they're very cute too.

If you're looking for a hand cream full of natural ingredients then I'd definitely recommend this. The scent, the packaging, the brand- everything about this product is lovely. If you ever see it as a freebie with a magazine or something like that then I would urge you to pick it up that way because this 50ml tube is the fullsize and comes in at £10 (available here).

What hand cream do you use?

Follow me via: [Bloglovin[She Said Beauty] [Twitter[Facebook]

May 12, 2013

Review Round-Up #3

twisted sista serum l'occitane precious cream elizabeth arden 8 hour cream ren ita mineral day cream in situ cosmetics rose 24 hour hydration cream

L'Occitane Immortelle Precious Cream
I love L'Occitane's skincare products but this particular day cream isn't really suited to my skin type so I didn't really fall in love with it. The Immortelle Precious Cream is an anti-aging product aimed at normal to dry skin, I used it at my night cream for about two weeks before I ran out of product, and found it just a tad too heavy for my skin. It's a fantastically rich and nourishing face cream though and the packaging is really luxurious, the small sample I have is just a miniature of the normal size. If you have very dry skin or are starting to think about using a high quality anti-ageing cream then you might be interested in trying this one as I could imagine that it would be very effective. Fullsize available for £43 here.

Twisted Sista Different Strokes Hair Serum*
This is a product I received way back at the #bbloggersxmas meet-up. I've been using it a lot since then (this bottle is two thirds empty) and although there are some fantastic qualities to this serum (the smell for one is just so, so gorgeous) it hasn't been life changing. It does a good job of eliminating some of my frizz but it just never tames it all. It's a great product for people who just need a little bit of help but if you have very frizzy hair then I wouldn't recommend this. Available for £1.99 here.

In Situ Cosmetics 24 Hour Hydration*
I received this sample at a Leeds' bloggers meet up and, as it is such a small samples, have primarily been using this as an on-the-go hand cream. I usually apply this just before I go outside into the (absolutely crazy) wind that Leeds just can't seem to get enough of. I find it's done a great job of hydrating my skin and I quite like the thick formula of it. I've looked into In Situ as a brand and I love how much you can customize their skincare ranges (you can choose the ingredients, scent, formula etc of all the products). Rosebud, the scent I received, is nice but it isn't very strong but you can order sample sizes, such as the one I received, before ordering full sizes to see if you like the product. A lovely touch that would definitely encourage me to try out more of their products in the future. You can find out more about In Situ here.

Elizabeth Arden Fragrance Free Eight Hour Cream
I was hugely skeptical about this product when I first received it as I was absolutely sure that I'd tried it before and hadn't liked it. When I finally picked it up I started using it as a lip balm and really loved the consistency. I love using this before bed (it's replaced my Body Shop Lip Butter) and I'm going to be using this daily until I run out! Would definitely recommend this getting this if you have dry lips but it is also supposed to be great for any dry skin you might have too! Fullsize available for £25 here.

Ren Vita Mineral Day Cream

I don't talk about Ren enough on my blog, especially considering how many of their products I've tried over the last year. I have a ridiculous amount of their samples so I'll definitely incorporate these into my Review Round-Up posts from now on. This Day Cream is really gentle but really thick and nourishing. I don't love the smell of it but I really love how soft and moisturised it leaves my skin feeling. I love using this sort of product on my cheeks, which are dry and sensitive, but don't use this on my oily t-zone. I think this is incredibly effective, contains only good ingredients and would be a fantastic day cream for any of you with normal type skin. Fullsize available for £25 here.

I try a lot of sample size products so it's lovely to be able to share reviews of them with you, I hope you enjoyed reading a little bit about the ones I've been using lately! Have you tried any of these products before?


May 10, 2013

Vaseline Lip Therapy Rosy Lips: Review and Swatches

tinted lip balm that nourishes dry lips and protects them
pink tinted lip balm that nourishes dry lips and protects them
tinted lip balm that nourishes dry lips and protects them

I love tinted lip balms. I really, really love the idea of getting nourishment and a slick of colour all at once. I've tried quite a few new tinted lip balms this year, some of which I've liked and some of which haven't been so great. I was a little bit let down by the Nivea Rose Lip Balm that I reviewed recently (you can read about it here) so when I tried Vaseline Lip Therapy Rosy Lips I really did keep my expectations quite low. The good news is that I really liked it. The formula is smooth and slightly buttery-feeling,  much nicer than the Nivea lip balm, which means that product (and colour) glides onto you lips really smoothly and lasts quite well too. I find the formula really nourishing and is very reminiscent of my Nivea Essential Lip Balm, that coincidentally I've just recently finished. The nourishing effect of this balm is a lot better than the Nivea Rose Lip Balm and on this factor alone I would definitely recommend this over that one. It does, however, contain Petroleum Jelly which isn't an ingredient I like to use. But unlike Vaseline tin balms Vaseline Rosy Lips does contain other moisturising ingredients such as Almond Oil so it doesn't just protect the lips it does actually work to nourish them. 

Onto my thoughts about the colour! As you can see from my hand and lip swatches below, the colour of this is quite a bright pink. It swatches very sheer so the effect isn't too strong, it just adds a pop of colour to your face which I find looks particularly complementary with pared down make-up and a slight rose-tint on my cheeks. It is the perfect little lip product for days when your lips feel dry but you still want a little bit of colour, as well as for those lazy days where you want to look nice but can't be bothered to have to check your face in a mirror regularly. This is the one, ladies. This is the rosy tint I have been looking for. I know I shouldn't say it myself, but I really like how this looks on me. And the fact that I really love how it feels on my lips seals the deal. 


tinted lip balm that nourishes dry lips and protects them
tinted lip balm that nourishes dry lips and protects them

In short, despite its questionable ingredients I do actually really like this. At £2.05 it's really affordable and it's really easy to get your hands on (it's available in Superdrug stores and online here). If like me you love little treats that won't break the bank but will give you something lovely and new to play with, then Vaseline Lip Therapy Rosy Lips is something that will satisfy all of your shopping cravings without resulting in too much guilt and at the end of the day will leave you with a lovely, effective lip balm that you can use year round. I hope any of you that go out and try this enjoy it as much as I have!

What's your favourite lip balm right now?


May 09, 2013

Please Nominate One Little Vice for the Cosmopolitan Best Newcomer Award

Hello everyone! 

So as you know One Little Vice has been up and running for around eight months now and the response that this blog has had far exceeded all of my expectations. Although I don't think that blogging should be seen as 'competitive' sometimes its nice to put your blog out there a little bit. With this intention in mind I would really love it if any of you who enjoy reading my blog could nominate me for the Cosmopolitan Best Newcomer award which is specifically for blogs under one year old. 

The link to the nomination page is here and all you have to do is enter your email, my blog's url and tick a few boxes- it's really quick and easy.

Any and all support will be really appreciated, and even if you don't find time to vote thank you for your continued support in all other areas. Knowing that there are readers who keep on returning means a lot to me and those of you who leave me comments or talk to me on twitter are all so lovely and friendly. Thank you!



May 08, 2013

REVIEW: The Body Shop Vitamin E Eye Cream

natural eye cream moisturiser gentle nourishing

I don't know whether it's my impending graduation or the fact that my 21st birthday is looming in the ever nearing future, but lately I've been getting more and more concerned with taking better care of my skin. During the last few month's I've started using an eye cream every night (I would have used this in the mornings too if it had SPF). Initially it was in the hopes of reducing my dark circles (which sadly the Body Shop's Vitamin E Eye Cream hasn't really helped with) but eventually it became more than that. I don't know about all of you but I for one really love my skin. I know it isn't perfect but I really do love it, flaws and all. I want to feel this way forever, I always want to be happy in the skin I'm in. But ageing... it really does strike a certain degree of fear in me. Television, magazines, billboards, adverts at bus stops, everywhere is imagery of perfect faces, young or old. I know it isn't possible to attain, let alone maintain, that sort of 'photo-shopped' perfection but it does set the bar quite high. With this in my mind, I've definitely been making much more of a concerted effort to stick to a strict, and thorough, skincare regime.

Anyway! The Body Shop's Vitamin E Eye Cream has been a part of my routine since January, this small tube has lasted really, really well. It's a lovely and gentle moisturizer but it's still incredibly hydrating. I've found that it's definitely improved the feel of the skin around my eyes, which has become softer and smoother. I don't, however, have much in the way of fine lines or wrinkles so can't really comment on it's effectiveness at improving them. I'm just hoping that this is a good preventative as I do feel as though it's keeping the skin around my eyes really soft and supple. Although I've enjoyed using this, and I do think that it's incredibly good value for money, I won't be repurchasing this straight away. I really do need a product that improves my dark circles, which have gotten worse and worse in the last few months. I love this eye cream but ideally I'm looking for something that will at least help my dark circles a little bit. I would still recommend the Vitamin E Eye Cream if you want something that will really hydrate and nourish your skin, and if I ever find that the skin around my eyes is in need of intense hydration then I'd definitely go back to using this.

For now at least I can say that I'm really happy that I tried this eye cream and it was a great product to start with, but I'm definitely going to be swapping this out of my routine in the near future for something that helps will more of my skin's needs.  But if you have dry or tight skin, or want something that will intensely smooth your skin, then this little beauty is a great value product that (at £10, available here) I'd recommend giving this a try.

What eye cream do you use? Do you know anything that might help my dark circles?


May 07, 2013

My Lips But Better: L'Oreal GlamShine Stain Splash in Romy (Review and Swatches)

lip stain gloss packaging Romy
lip stain gloss wand in pink shade Romy
hand swatch of pink lip gloss stain Romy
lip swatch of pink lip gloss stain Romy a my lips but better colour
Please excuse my under eye circles - only three weeks till I graduate so I'm too busy to sleep much!

L'Oreal's GlamShine Stain Splash is a wonderful hybrid lip product that combines the greatness of a range of lip products into one gorgeous little tube. These GlamShine Stain Splashes have been heralded as the YSL Glossy Stain dupes- having not tried any of these myself I can't really comment, but I will be able to tell you all about the GlamShine Stain Splashes (and how much I've been enjoying the shade I picked up).

The shade I bought for myself is called Romy and, as you can see in the above photos, it is a really natural pink shade that does wonders to subtly add some colour to your face. Romy is my ultimate MLBB shade, it is just a fraction darker than my bare lips and I find it really flattering and incredibly easy to wear. I tend to wear this most on days when I'm not wearing a lot of make-up and want something that will  instantly make me look more 'done-up' without being too bright or high maintenance. I have, however, also paired this with an intense smokey eye on nights out and thought it looked really gorgeous worn like that too. 

The formula of these GlamStain Splashes is unlike anything that I've come across before. They apply very fluid, feeling almost like water. They then thicken and start to feel very thick whilst retaining the lightness that you get when you apply them. When they are dried they are like a thin layer of glossy gel over your lips which lasts incredibly well when you aren't eating or drinking- for literally hours. The colour is relatively sheer with one application but they are very buildable and don't feel too thick or heavy even with two or three layers. In the photo of my lips I'm wearing two layers and this is how I like  to wear Romy. I get a visible, opaque colour and the glossy finish is noticeable without being too intense.

I'm not a big fan of lip glosses normally, I find that they last poorly, are easily smudged and they are often way too sticky. GlamShine Stain Splashes are the opposite. They last remarkably well (and even fare okay when eating), I have had no experience of smudging and they are not sticky in the sense I dislike. My only gripe with these is that Romy does not leave behind much of a noticeable stain when the gloss finish fades. It may be that the shade is too close to my natural  lip colour as I've read in other reviews that the staining power of the darker shades is better. Nevertheless, I haven't noticed much staining power but as the glossy finish lasts so well this isn't too much of a problem.

Overall, I absolutely love Romy. I think it is really subtle and gorgeous, perfect for more natural looking make-up and I really think this would be a great 'date' lip product as it improves the look of lips without being too obvious and the lasting power is brilliant for something so glossy. I'm  really happy I picked this up! You can find L'Oreal's GlamShine Stain Splashes in Boots for £7.99.

If you've tried these I'd love to know what you think about them! 


May 06, 2013

Milestone Giveaway: Win some of the things I love

As some of you may have noticed I very recently reached 400 GFC followers!

I have to say a massive thank you to everyone who follows my blog on any platform and also to those who don't follow but regularly read and comment.

Your support is really appreciated. Blogging has become a great passion of mine and I really enjoy doing it and one of the main reasons is that everyone I get to interact with is so lovely. So, as a big thank you I'm doing a giveaway featuring some of my favourite make-up and skincare items so that one of you will have the opportunity to try out some of things I love.

On a side note, I would also encourage you to use this as an opportunity to follow my blog on Bloglovin' if you use it and haven't already added me over there. If GFC does disappear it would be a shame to lose any readers- follow via Bloglovin is an option in the widget for which you'll get lots of extra entries. So if you do have Bloglovin and read blogs through it please do take the time to add my blog on there- I'd really appreciate it :)

Onto what you could win! Prizes prizes prizes :)

The items in this giveaway are:

Maxfactor Clump Defy Mascara in Black
Rimmel Scadaleyes Eye Liner in Nude
Collection Shimmer Shades
17 Mirror Shine Lipstick in Beehive
Maybelline Colour Tattoo in On and On Bronze
Real Techniques Blush Brush
Weleda Skin Food (30ml)
L'Occitane Angelica skincare samples
L'Occitane Shea skincare samples
Ren Frankincense Revitalising night Cream (15ml)
La Sultane de Saba Body Lotion (30ml)
Nicky Chavez Beverly Hills Plump 'N Thick Leave in Thickening Mist
Small Make-Up Bag (as pictured in above photos)

So there you have it! One month today one lucky reader will win a whole lot of lovely stuff to try out. 

This is a UK ONLY giveaway, there will be one winner and anyone found lying about entries or entering from a 'giveaway account' will not be able to win. If you make an accidental mistake on the entry form then just let me know in a comment (I do that all the time!).


May 05, 2013

Nip + Fab Mango Smoothie Dry Skin Fix Body Butter

hydrating moisturiser that smells tropical and sweet
thick moisturiser effective smells good and sweet and fruity
body butter effective moisturiser thick fruity mango scented soft skin hydrated
Nip+Fab Mango Smoothie Dry Skin Fix Body Butter is available from Boots for £8.49

Nip+Fab are a brand I've always wanted to try but for whatever reason I've just never got around to purchasing any of their products! So when I received this body butter sample in my pretty darn amazing April Glossybox [link here] I was really pleased. There were three versions of Nip+Fab's Body Butter up for grabs and I received Mango Smoothie- a gorgeous, sweet scented body butter that smells just like ripe, fresh mangoes. It has none of that artificial scent about it that some fruity products do.

As you can see from my last photo, the Mango Smoothie Dry Skin Fix is really quite a thick product - it doesn't drip like a lotion but I wouldn't describe it as being quite as thick as the Body Shop's Body Butters. Mango Smoothie Dry Skin Fix contains shea butter and avocado oil which means that it's intensely moisturising and I do find that when I've used it my skin has been left noticeable smooth all day long. It's one downside is that it does contain mineral oils which some people rigorously avoid, and this ingredient makes this inappropriate for anyone who suffers from blocked pores or acne on their body as mineral oil is known to aggravate these conditions.

Personally, I like the product and I've enjoyed using it but I don't know if I'd repurchase it. It did a good job at keeping my skin hydrating and soft, and I do like the scent, but I just didn't fall in love with it like I have done with some other moisturising products. In place of repurchasing it I'm probably going to have look into trying a couple of other Nip+Fab products over the next few months so keep your eyes peeled for those!

Have you tried this Body Butter before? What's your favourite Body Butter?


May 04, 2013

WORTH THE HYPE: Moroccan Oil Hair Treatment

hair treatment for dry hair intense hydration and soothing

Last year I reviewed Macadamia Healing Treatment Spray (you can read my review here) and for a long time that was my go to hair oil. But then for Christmas my dad's girlfriend gave me some Moroccan Oil and my hair was never the same again.I still love using Macadamia Treatment Spray but it just doesn't transform my hair like Moroccan Oil does.

I apply Moroccan Oil very sparingly, a little goes a very long way. This small 25ml bottle doesn't have a pump so it is really easy to pour out too much product (which is very annoying) but it isn't impossible to get a little bit out at a time. I have the original formula (they also have a formula for fine hair which is lighter) and the oil is quite thick but I haven't found that it weighs my hair down at all. I apply this through the ends of my hair as well as the midlength and it is the best leave-in product that I have ever had the pleasure of using.

I've tried countless leave in conditioners, Macadamia's Leave in Cream and Macadamia's Healing Treatment Spray but none of them have left my hair feeling and looking so soft, shiny and thoroughly healthy. I find that the effects last between washes even if I don't use it every time and that my hair has developed split ends far more slowly. I think this is an absolute must have for anyone who mistreats their hair. If you love using heat on your hair then give it something back and pamper it back to health! It's also fantastic if you feel like your hair is dull or lackluster as when I follow up my usual shampoo and conditioner with this I feel as though I've just stepped out of the hairdresser, I'm all shine baby!

Something that might hold you back from ever trying this product is the price. Yes, it is steep. However, the 25ml bottle (available here for £12.85*) is an incredibly convenient way to try Moroccan Oil without investing £30.45 on a 100ml bottle (available from FeelUnique). I, personally, couldn't recommend this highly enough as it is hands down the best hair treatment that I have ever tried - nothing else has been as good as this. My 25ml is lasting me incredibly well,  I've used about a third of it over the last two months using is every other day. There is no doubt that this is a luxury product but the £30.45 that I will be paying for my fullsize bottle will most likely last me into next year. 

If you want shiny hair, hair that's less frizzy with healthier ends then this is a product you should try. I know it's expensive but it's an investment in your appearance and for me this has paid off big time. Tiana, if you're reading- thank you for this hair oil! The price would have put me off  too but I now know, and have to stress to you, that it is worth it, oh so worth it. 

Do you use a hair oil? Have you tried Moroccan Oil before?


May 02, 2013

REVIEW: Super Facialist by Una Brennan Tea Flower Deep Clean Pore Purifying Clay Mask

effective face mask for oily combination skin good at reducing blackheads or blocked proes

Super Facialist's Tea Flower Deep Clean Pore Purifying Clay Mask is something I've been meaning to review for what feels like ages! I've been using this mask for quite a few months now and it's part of my regular skincare routine (I use it every week, once a week). This 125ml tube has lasted me really well and, although this isn't to do with it's effectiveness, I really do love that the packaging has held up so well. (You can tell I obsess about the products in my bathroom looking neat and clean, haha.) 

The first time I used this Clay Mask I actually did a skin test (on my neck) just to double check that this wasn't going to be way too harsh on my skin as I've had bad reactions from clay face masks in the past. This passed the initial test but when I did first apply it to my face it did feel too strong for my dry and sensitive cheeks. When my face feels particular sensitive I only apply this to my oily t-zone but when it feels more normal, or if I have specific blemishes I want to target, I will apply this all  over. I think it's important to know what your skin needs because I for one know that overall my skin really can fluctuate but my t-zone will always be in need of this sort of product.  It's worth bearing in mind that this isn't a super gentle product but if you don't have sensitive or dry skin then this is something that can really help your skin to look its best.

Whenever I apply this Clay Mask (which is usually mid-week) I notice that it does an excellent job of cleansing my pores and reducing oil and shine. I do  actually feel that it's gotten more effective the more I've used it and I've found especially wonderful at drying up blemishes and shrinking pores. This is to do with the fact that it contains salicylic acid which is a brilliant ingredient for unclogging blocked pores. This face mask does, however, promise 'skin balance' and it contains hydrating ingredients such as shea butter and avocado oil. For it's price, £8.99 available from Boots, I think that Super Facialist's Tea Flower Deep Clean Pore Purifying Clay Mask is fantastically good value. It's effective, it contains high quality ingredients and it lasts for months. If you think this sounds right for your skin type then I would highly recommend it.

If this sounds like it would be too harsh for your skin then in it's place I would recommend Lush's Catastrophe Cosmetic which you can read a review of here.

What face masks would you recommend?

© One Little Vice | All rights reserved.
Blogger Template Designed by pipdig