Benefit Hello Flawless Face Powder

As much as I love my Benefit Porefessional, my last foray into Benefit was with their infamous ‘They’re Real’ mascara, and I wasn’t overly impressed. I felt it was overpriced for what it was, and didn’t exactly deliver on its promises. Foreshadowing…

So anyway, the reason I ended up buying this was that I had heard about the Bare Minerals pressed powder, and I was intrigued. From what I read, nobody was overly impressed, but the idea of having a pressed powder version of my favourite foundation captured me enough to consider looking around for a similar, high coverage, portable powder. A little research led me to this.

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Far from being just any old pressed powder, this product calls itself ‘a custom powder cover up’. How fancy! The idea is that you can build up the coverage, which was pretty much what I was looking for. Something I could keep in my bag in case of skin emergencies that would also control oil. This one seemed pretty decent, and also the box is adooooorable.

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I went with the shade “I Love Me” Ivory, which I believe is the palest. It was a good colour match generally, but building it up made it ever so slightly more orange.

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Did I mention that I love the packaging? The little square, mirrored box is just so cute I want to cry. It also comes with some fabulous applicators; a thick, soft, square sponge and a brush.

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The sales girl told me that the brush is for sheer, light coverage, and the sponge is for layering it on for full coverage. The words ‘full coverage’ convinced me, and I squirreled it on home, thinking that this could be the powder I was looking for.

My friends, it was not.

I’m not trying to be mean here, but I think that Benefit are seriously deluded when it comes to what their products can do. This was nowhere near full coverage. Not even close. In the below pictures I pasted on a few layers with the sponge, and as you can see, the difference was negligible.

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My biggest skin complaint is always red skin, so I was hoping to cover up the pinkness in my cheeks as well as getting rid of shine. One out of two aint bad. As you can see, the powder definitely covered up shine, but that is honestly all it did. My skin looks exactly the same in both pictures. If anything, I would say it looked better in the first one; the powder succeeded in flattening me out somewhat.

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Good points? Ummm…well, it gets rid of shine. But then, so do all powders. It has an SPF of 15, but to me that is so irrelevant they may as well have not bothered; I think that everyone needs a 30 on their face, and no less. Oh, and the adorable packaging I mentioned? Turns out that having a square pressed powder becomes a mite less awesome when it comes to trying to get it out the corners. As you can see below, it’s a hell of a lot less easy to evenly use a palette when it isn’t circular. Not only that, but this is barely a months worth of gentle daily usage. So it runs out fast too! What fun!

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I am very disappointed. It doesn’t do what it says it does, and it doesn’t do it for the bargain price of £25.50. Eye watering is right. Back in the day, when I used pressed powder religiously, I used to be a big fan of the L’oreal true match one, and it is definitely vastly better-and much cheaper- than this one. If you are looking for a decent, buildable powder, I suggest you give the L’oreal one a go, and give Benefit a massively wide berth.

Once again, I find myself in the position of finding Benefit to be overpriced and under truthful. That aint a good mix. A small part of me blames myself; I didn’t take my time to check it out, just taking the brand on faith. A very stupid thing to do, really, given that I had already been burned once. Fool me once, shame on Benefit, but fool me twice…

New York Haul and Make Up Forever High Definition Powder Review

You guys, you have to go to New York. Seriously. It is the greatest city in the world.

Chilling on Brooklyn Bridge, all casual like.

Chilling on Brooklyn Bridge, all casual like.

We were staying in midtown, a few blocks from Grand Central, in a hotel called the Shelburne NYC which I would thoroughly recommend. We had an amazing time; we saw everything, tried everything; a real NYC experience.

About to go see the Yankees. I felt unbearably American at this precise moment.

About to go see the Yankees. I felt unbearably American at this precise moment.

If you’ve never been, I highly suggest you head over there now. It was literally exactly how it looks on the TV: fast, fun and full of life. I adored it.

The view from the Empire State Building at midnight. There's nothing quite like it.

The view from the Empire State Building at midnight. There’s nothing quite like it.

But anyway, onto the important stuff; the beauty products.

I’ve been back from the US for a month now, which I think has given me adequate time to try out all the things I bought out there.

I don’t think I went too crazy, incidentally; I only visited Sephora 3 times, and they were all totally necessary trips.

Below is my mini NYC haul….

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See what I mean? Not bad, considering. I was trying not too spend too much, since saving for a house really has to come before buying mascara, but I feel like I stuck to the necessities. Sort of.

Anyway, onto the product I’ve chose to review today; High Definition Powder by Make Up For Ever.

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This is a brand I had been dying to try out, a cult, US-only line that I’ve heard nothing but good things about from other bloggers.

I had planned on buying a foundation (which I did; more on that later) but I ended up grabbing this too, simply because I’ve been wanting to get one for a while.

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This is a finishing powder; a colourless, fine grained dust which you brush over your finished face to set and hold your look. I am a big fan of the matte look, plus I have oily skin, so I’ve really wanted to try a finishing power for ages. I figured, why not this one?

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I don’t know if you can see from the picture, but it dispenses through a fine mesh, which is utterly fab; it totally stops the powder going everywhere, like it does with normal dispensers.

The powder itself is super fine, micro granulated with a talcum powder appearance but a much lighter texture. Once you dust it on it vanishes into your face like a second skin, soaking into your pores and holding your makeup in place.

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I LOVE this. Seriously. I kind of thought I would anyway, but I’m still surprised by just how much.

Since the first time I tried it I haven’t gone without; it gives your skin a beautifully subtle finish, and it lasts all day. My face can look like an oil slick, especially in Summer, but I haven’t had to reapply this at all.

I can’t see myself going back to a regular loose powder after this. Since it’s hard to get hold of I am willing to try other brands (I know GOSH do one), but if they don’t live up to it then I will definitely go the Import route. That’s how much I need this in my life.

If you’re looking for a setting powder to keep your face in place, then give this, or other finishing powders, a go; it does the job perfectly, giving your foundation the staying power you’ve only dreamed of. If you have oily skin, don’t even hesitate; day long matte perfection is heading your way…

MUA Pro-Base Prime & Conceal Powder

Today I am reviewing MUA’s Prime & Conceal Powder from their Pro-Base range. There are 3 reasons why I picked up this powder.

  1. I was looking for a new powder, and Instead of the matte finish I usually favour, I decided I wanted something a little more glowy.
  2. It’s MUA, and I am a huge fan of every little thing that they do.
  3. It’s got 4 pretty colours and it looks awesome.

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I spotted this a few months back, and though I was intrigued, I didn’t buy it simply because I had no clue what the hell it was.

To be honest, I still don’t really. The packaging is less than enlightening. The only thing it says on the back of the compact is the following; “A baked, silk touch colour correcting powder that transforms your complexion.”

Lack of commas aside, this description is incredibly vague. It doesn’t explain anything other than what is blatantly obvious. A quick look on the website gave me these two further sentences;

“Apply this powder to help even out skin tone and illuminate. Wear alone or over your makeup to instantly brighten!” 

A little more helpful, at least. We now know that this will even skin tone. It also illuminates and brightens, which is exactly what I was looking for. I had a look at a few reviews, and people seemed impressed, so I invested in one.

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I was super impressed by how cool it looked, but I still didn’t really know what to do with it. I know that green counteracts red, and I know that you’re meant to use yellow on your eyes, but what about the rest of it?? Again, I went to the MUA website…

“Peach – This will warm up any blue hues around your eyes, you can also use this to cover a bruise if you’ve had a bump. 

Lilac – Use this to brighten dull skin tones and counteract yellow tones. 

Yellow – This works especially well on olive and tanned complexions to brighten around your eyes.

Green – This will neutralise red tones in your complexion – if you have rosacea then apply this underneath your foundation.” 

It was at this point that I started to feel a bit cheated. As far as I can tell, peach and yellow do exactly the same thing. I also found the idea that this super pale green powder would neutralise rosacea laughable; this powders are all so pale that you can barely see them doing a gosh darn thing. Seriously. I applied them in all the right places, and my skin looked EXACTLY the same.

MUA then go on to add this gem;

“#MUATip – Remember to apply your skin tone concealer after you’ve corrected the colour to avoid a multi-coloured complexion!” 

I think you’re seriously overreaching there, MUA. I think I would struggle to have anyone notice I have anything on at all, let alone be shocked by my blindingly bright rainbow face.

Plain arm on the left...and with colour stripes on the right. OMG, sooo multi-coloured, amirite?!

Plain arm on the left…and with colour stripes on the right. OMG, sooo multi-coloured, amirite?!

 

I proper layered in those pictures, too. I put on a good 10 fingerfuls before I gave up. There is an incredibly vague, super light amount of colour to each of these, but any attempt at blending will whisk it away in an instant. Pretty much, don’t bother.

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I hadn’t totally given up; I was still hoping that it would work as an all over illuminator, which of course is what I wanted it for. I grabbed a brush, gave it a swirl and covered my face in powder.

It made no difference.

Like, less than no difference. I think actually not putting it on would have been more effective. It doesn’t make me look luminous. It doesn’t correct my skin tone or brighten or do anything of note. It does literally sod all.

I’m willing to believe that maybe I’m using it wrong, somehow, but until someone proves this to me I will just have to assume that all the people who gave it good reviews are on some kind of trendy new hallucinogenic drug.

I bet this looks hella bright on LSD.

I bet this looks hella bright on LSD.

I still think it’s pretty. But I wasn’t exactly hoping to frame it, so that’s no good for anything either.

I tried to like it, I really did, but what am I supposed to do with it? it has no discernible use. I truly believe I could layer this on until I hit the pan, and still not notice anything of merit. If, for some ungodly reason, you are interested in buying one yourself, you can pick it up here for the bargain price of £4. Good luck with those poor life choices.

In the meantime, my friends, I give you my new MUA paperweight.

FYI, it was rubbish at that, too.

FYI, it was rubbish at that, too.

Seaweed Ionic Clay Mask by The Body Shop

I LOVE facemasks.

I really, really do.

Anytime I discover a new brand, or a new store, the first thing I do is make a beeline to the facemask section. I’ve been doing facemasks on myself since I was pretty young, and I truly believe the right mask can make the world of difference.

I have a ton. As of writing, I think I have just under 20 face masks in my possession, which I use in rotation. I use them all for different reasons; clay, if I’m having a day in which my face looks like an oil slick. Brightening, if I’m feeling less than luminous. Moisturising, to combat winter dryness. Peel-off, for when I want to feel like a kid who’s gone mental with PVA glue.

I’m always buying new ones, and willing to try every single one I find, but I also have some which I preference, ones which I repurchase, with a proven history of effectiveness. The one I’m writing about today is one of these. I was using it last night, and it suddenly occurred to me that despite being a facemask obsessive, I’ve never really blogged about them. This madness must end!!!!

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This little fella is the Seaweed Ionic Clay Mask by The Body Shop. The following attributes are pulled from their website;

This revitalising clay mask cleanses skin and controls excess oil.

  • Draws out impurities
  • Clarifying
  • Refreshing

I should mention at this point that I have a massive bias towards clay masks. This is for a number of reasons; I have a pretty oily T-zone, for one thing, and clay is the best thing for oily skin. I also love the idea of slathering on a really thick mask, a hefty layer of mud, and having all the grim and dirt soak up into it like a sponge. You can really only get this effect with a clay mask, and that’s the reason I was first drawn to this one.

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As you can see, this is truly a mud mask, to a massive degree. It’s SO thick. It may be the thickest mud mask I’ve ever used. You truly have to dig in order to scoop out a fingerful of this stuff; it’s the kind of nightmare mud that used to make me hate hockey at school.

Fortunately, on your face, it’s heaven. It’s thick, gritty, and really feels like it’s gonna super power its way through your face, taking all dirt and oil with it. It’s so thick that you really don’t need a massive amount to get solid coverage, which is fantastic, as it means you can get more uses out of it.

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Another great thing about this mask is how fast it dries. Most mud masks take their own sweet time, but this one is crusty in under 10 minutes; practically a miracle given how thick it is. It also does this pretty cool thing where it shows you what it’s doing; as you can see in the pictures below, as it dries, you can see oily spots on my nose, where the mask is soaking up the grossness.

Go ahead, look at my oily pores. I dare you.

Go ahead, look at my oily pores. I dare you.

I can’t even explain how much fun this is to observe. It’s like using that mouthwash where you spit all the bacteria into the sink afterwards; gross, but intensely satisfying.

My skin always feels great after I wash this mask off. Fresh and clear, without a drop of oil in sight. It brightens up my T-zone considerably, and I feel like it keeps oil at bay for at least a few days afterwards.

It has a lovely, fresh, oceany smell (that would be the seaweed then) which makes me feel like I’m having a proper, spa facial. I can’t speak to what it tastes like, but my cat seemed to enjoy it.

That's fine Parsley, you go right ahead and snack on my face.

That’s fine Parsley, you go right ahead and snack on my face.

There had to be a downside, of course, and here it is; this is one of those masks that can sting like hell on earth. If you’ve ever had a stingy face mask, you know exactly what I mean. That horrid, itchy, burning sensation that makes you want to wash off the mask STRAIGHT AWAY before you lose all the skin on your face. That feeling.

Now to be fair, I don’t get this all the time. It happened the first 2 times I used it, and lasted for about a minute before settling down. I’ve always told myself this is just my skin being super cleaned, but I really don’t know if that’s true. It certainly is true that after my skin got used to it, the stingy feeling went away, never to return, but I still feel like I need to warn you. If you have sensitive skin, this may be one to avoid.

I do love it, though. It’s one of the more satisfying mud masks I’ve used, and the gritty texture gives you a bit of exfoliation when you wash it off.

You can buy it here for £13, and according to their website it’s a bestseller, which I can totally understand. An amazing face mask for a solid price, with only a slight chance of extreme face burn. I call that a win!

Ren V-Cense Revitalising Night Cream

Today’s review is something I’ve been meaning to talk about for a long time; so long, in fact, that when I went to find the website link for the product, I found out it now has a different name. as a result, the product in the pictures is Ren Frankincense Revitalising Night Cream, but the product I’m reviewing is V-Cense Revitalising Night Cream.

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I’m not sure I’m a fan of the new name, to be honest. “V-Cense” sounds like a chastity club to me, not an epic face cream. Plus, having Frankincense written on the tube made me feel a little bit Christmassy every time I used it. Still, at least they haven’t discontinued it.

I actually feel really bad that I didn’t review this sooner, as this product was pretty revolutionary for me. Up until the point that I tried this, I had a pretty so-so relationship with night cream. I had tried loads, and there were some that woke me up with nice skin, some that didn’t, but none that really gave me the ‘wow’ factor I was looking for. I did find this wow factor by using Bio Oil as a night cream, incidentally, but that’s different; Bio Oil is a super strength, regenerating skin oil, and I was just USING it as a night cream. An actual, fully fledged night cream that actually amazed me was proving frustratingly elusive.

I got a teeny mini tube of this free with a magazine, and I instantly stuck it in my handbag and forgot about it. Fast forward a few months; I was at my boyfriends, and my night cream had run out. I remembered this was in my handbag, slung it on, and went to bed. Didn’t really think much of it, to be honest. It smells ordinary, feels ordinary. Goes on nicely and all that jazz, but nothing stood out.

Then I woke up.

My friends, I woke up into a world of REN.

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My skin was soooo soft. And not only that, but it actually felt firmer, plumped up. I was amazed; I’ve always read about creams promising to firm and plump your skin, but I write that off as sales blurb. I never expected it to be something you could actually feel on your face, let alone overnight. But the proof was undeniable. I couldn’t stop stroking my face, marvelling at the difference the cream had made. Not only that, but when I headed into the bathroom, I was actually taken aback at how smooth and vibrant my skin looked. It was incredible!

As soon as I got into work that morning, (stroking my face in the car on the way), I went straight online and headed for the REN website to find this cream. It was a lot more than I would usually spend- £32- but I didn’t even hesitate. I put it straight in my basket and headed for the checkout. No questions asked.

That was a long time ago, and I’ve since purchased my second tube. I love this stuff. True love. It’s the only night cream that has ever given me such noticeable results, and it continues to do so after all this time. I now alternate between using this and Bio Oil, and my skin is the best It’s ever been.

This, combined with the Simple day cream I reviewed a little while back, means that I have finally achieved a goal I’ve had since my early teens; finding a reliable, amazing day/night cream set that ACTUALLY works. This does. The two of them combined have my skin in tip top condition, and I now don’t even glance at the other face creams. I don’t need to; I’ve found my destiny!

You can get hold of this cream here, and I really would recommend it. If, like me, you’ve never really found a cream that made you wake up with noticeably improved skin, then this is the stuff for you. If you can, try and find a mini tube and try it first, like I did; I’m betting you won’t be disappointed 😉

Simple SPF30 Protecting Moisture Cream

You guys, I am SO excited about the product I’m talking about today.

As regular readers will know, I have a minor obsession with suncream. Being very pale and freckled, this is down to necessity, but I am also rather passionate about getting other people to use suncream, even if they think they don’t need it. A tan is just as dangerous a cause of skin cancer as burning is!

Whilst I’m not asking everyone to be as militant about applying suncream as I am, I do think that people should be using an spf face cream, daily, as a standard. Not only does it protect you from the obvious dangers, but it also protects your skin from ageing, and as a result an SPF day cream is really something everyone should have in their armoury all year round.

I’ve reviewed a couple before, specifically the super strength SPF50 SunSense one (great for summer and holidays) and the delicately scented Soap and Glory SPF25 one (which I was greatly enamoured with for a while, but over time became less of a fan of the slightly sticky texture on my oily skin.) In both cases, I wasn’t happy with the shiny, dewy finish, and in the case of the Soap and Glory, I was very aware that I hadn’t quite reached the recommended SPF30 minimum.

After the incredibly bright summer we had this year, I was even more determined to find an SPF30 face cream which ticked all the boxes for me, which, as a reminder, are the following;

–          Have a light texture

–          Absorb super-fast

–          Have a high SPF

–          Make my skin soft

With a fresh surge of determination, I got onto Google, ready to hunker down and find an amazing face cream, no matter how long it took.

It took me less than a minute.

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I am utterly clueless as to how I didn’t spot this before. Maybe it’s new?! I hope so, because if not I feel like a total fool for not seeing it. Simple is one of those classic, go-to brands, that for some reason I’ve never actually used! I came across this cream pretty fast, though, and I was amazed as I read the description; it seemed to have everything I was looking for.

From the description on the back…

“For protected and radiant looking skin…

Our Protecting Moisture Cream SPF30 is a perfect blend of multi-vitamins and skin-loving ingredients with SPF protection to give dehydrated, tired and dull skin a boost of hydration while protecting it from UVA & UVB rays. The light texture absorbs quickly into your skin to rapidly replenish moisture levels for up to 24 hours. Perfect even for sensitive skin.

Simple goodness…

  • · 2 Vitamins
    • Vitamin B3
    • Vitamin E
  • · 2 Skin Loving Ingredients
    • Glycerin
    • Sweet Almond Oil
  • · No Artificial Perfume or Colour and No Harsh Chemicals”

I was pretty darn excited from the description; the words ‘light texture’ and ‘quickly absorbed’, 2 items on my wishlist, are literally written right there on the bottle. The references to ‘a boost of hydration’ and ‘replenished moisture levels’ seemed to tick the ‘making skin soft’ box, and not only was the SPF the recommended 30, but it contains both UVA (for skin cancer protection) and UVB (for wrinkle protection)! Perfection itself! And not only that, but as it was on sale for about £3.50, insanely cheap, and ¼ of the price of my previous Soap and Glory!

I will admit to being slightly worried when I first pressed the dispenser; the cream was bright, bright white, just like all the super sticky suncreams I’ve ever used, and seemed incredibly thick. It also dispensed a large amount in one pump, as you can see below.

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But I shouldn’t have been worried. I can’t deny this feels thick when you smear it on, but it literally sinks into your skin in under 30 seconds. LITERALLY. You go from having white smears all over your face to matte perfect skin in less than half a minute; it’s really rather miraculous. That’s another thing I adore; the matte finish. All my other suncreams have left me with a dewy, slightly sticky finish; not so this one. Matte skin perfection, which for someone with my oily skin is pretty darn impressive. It’s ready to have makeup on top in about a minute, but if you leave it plain your face will feel so soft that you won’t be able to stop touching it.

Not only that, but it genuinely is kind to skin. I’ve been using it for about a month, every day, and in the last week I’ve stopped wearing makeup. Completely. I am totally bare faced as I write this, and I couldn’t be happier. Here I am, right this second, naked faced and proud!

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My skin genuinely looks the best it ever has, and I even thing my biggest bugbear- my pink cheeks- is actually improving. God knows how, but I have found a high SPF day cream that actually IMPROVES your skin. Before this, I had always believed that only a good night cream was worth investing in, as day cream couldn’t put iteslf to work in the same way, but Simple have proved me wrong. A.mazing.

So, to sum up, it’s perfect and fabulous and wonderful. It not only makes a wonderful base for your makeup (if you need it after how fab it makes your skin!) but it also ensures that your neck, chest, arms and hands are all receiving sun protection every day. It makes your skin amazing, and everyone should buy it right now. The end. No arguments. DO IT.

SunSense SPF50 FaceCreams and Lipbalm Haul

I don’t know if anybody noticed but….it’s kinda sunny at the moment.

I mean like, really sunny. Finally! It feels like its been horrid weather forever! I can testify personally to this, as I’ve been following my running resolution and been going out on runs every lunch since January. You can imagine the slogs I’ve had; running in the pouring rain and wind. When I look back now, I’m amazed I actually kept it up. But I did, and in the back of my mind as the rain was soaking me to the skin while I trudged along was ‘it’s OK, it’ll be great in summer.’

For a while I thought summer might never come, but it did. The last few weeks I’ve been out running in blazing sunlight, and I can’t even tell you how great it’s been! I’ve discarded the long sleeve jacket and trousers and replaced it with a vest, shorts..and suncream.

Of course suncream! I am ginger, after all. And that leads me onto the product reviews I’m doing today. I’m actually really excited about this one, and I’ve been planning it for a while. I got send a lovely stash of goodies from Sunsense, an amazing suncream company from Australia. Being aussie, you can imagine they really know their stuff, and being ginger I had naturally heard of them. They are heralded as the suncream masters, the know-it-all’s of sun safety. I even overheard a woman in Boots saying that her doctor had told her to use it on her children. As a result, when the company got in touch, I was chomping at the bit. Here’s what I was sent…

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I use suncream literally every day, even in winter, so you can imagine how excited I was to get this amazing stash. The best thing is, they are specially formulated for use on the face.

We all know we should be using suncream, not just to protect ourselves from wrinkles etc, but also from serious risks like skin cancer. However, traditional suncream is pretty gross. I can testify to this, as I’ve spend years slathering on thick, horrid stuff that clogs your pores no end. On your face, this is especially awful, and so I’ve always been on the lookout for a nice light facial suncream. In the past I had settled for an SPF25 face cream, and resigned myself to covering my face in the extra thick factor 50 suncreams meant for your body whilst abroad, and putting up with the resulting breakouts. But not anymore. The products created by SunSense are nothing short of a revelation.

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 SunSense Anti-Ageing Face

First up we have this cream. Full of AHA’s and with Glycolic acid for anti-ageing, this has all the ingredients of a fancy face cream; but with the added bonus of SPF50! It’s got a light liquid consistency, fine and milky, as you can see below.

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When you first apply this, it does feel more like a traditional suncream than a face cream, as the consistency is slightly thicker than a basic face lotion. However, this quickly goes. It takes just a few minutes to soak into your skin after applying, and then it feels just like any other face cream; no whiteness, and it doesn’t leave you with a sticky face. It just feels like a super light, super fast absorbing face lotion; it makes your skin soft, with a gorgeous light texture, and with added anti-agening and SPF! According to the bottle, it also has “Vitamin E and 3% niacinamide, found to help improve the skin’s elasticity and reduce the appearance of wrinkles.” It’s also fragrance free, meaning you don’t get that distinctive suncreamy smell. What more can a girl ask for? I was impressed with the fact that this has such a high level of protection, and yet you can’t feel it. Fantastic.

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 SunSense Anti-Ageing Face Matte

Next up we have the ‘twin’ product to the above; as far as I can see, it’s exactly the same, except this one is tinted.

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As you can see, the consistency is the same. In the 2 pictures below, I first rubbed it a little, so you can see the consistency and the tint, and then I rubbed it in properly, in the picture on the left. as you can see, it completely vanishes.

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The final feeling is the same as the one above, soaks in nicely and feels soft, just with a slight coverage that makes your skin a little more radiant. I’d say that if you’re going to put makeup on over suncream, use the top one, whereas if you are a lover of tinted moisturiser, then this tinted one is perfect!

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 SunSense Lip Balm

I was soooo happy to get this one, as I don’t think there are enough high SPF lipbalms out there. in fact, I’m struggling to think of one over 15! But yes, lips need protection too people, and this little chap is perfect.

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With moisturising vitamin E as well as SPF50 UVA + UVB protection, this really is the perfect lipbalm. Its nice and thick but not sticky, goes on wonderfully and is the perfect thing to keep in your handbag in summer. I don’t go running without a thick layer of this now, and as summer comes I can’t imagine going out without it.

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 SunSense Daily Face

Finally we come to my absolute favourite product. This stuff is lush. Like, seriously. It’s SPF50, the same as the lotions, but has a lot thicker consistency, as you can see below.

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It’s a lot heavier, much more of a cream where the other 2 where lotions. It also feels gorgeous, a real indulgence. Here it is as before, slightly rubbed on to show the consistency, then completely rubbed in.

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As you can see, it vanishes completely, leaving your skin super soft, totally protected, and with that slight tint/glow that comes from a good BB cream. What can I say? I love it. It’s gorgeous. It would go well under makeup, or on its own, and it makes your skin so soft and fresh. I can totally see this becoming my new staple, particularly in summer when all you want to do is sling on the lightest coverage possible and get out the door. This is ideal; a lovely light cream that leaves your skin glowing, but with super high SPF. I’m wearing it right now, and my face feels soft and unclogged- just like a nice smooth face cream, but with secret SPF power! Fantastic! As I said at the start of the review, I’ve settled for an SPF25 face cream in the past, but I’ve always wanted a higher factor, and this is perfect.

I had a quick look on Amazon, and apparently this product is the number one bestseller in suncreams. I can totally see why. I haven’t stopped using it since I got it. I wear mine with a slick of pressed powder on top, as I like a matte finish, but if you are a lover of the dewy look, that is exactly what you will get with this. Either way, a worthy investment. You can also get 50% off it right now using the code DF50 if you follow this link; even better!

I’m seriously impressed with all these products, and I’ve already looked into ordering a big vat of their ‘SunSense Ultra’, the broad spectrum all over cream, just in time for summer. In the meantime, though, I’m just happy to have found a nice, light face cream with tons of SPF! It’s the dream! If you want to check out the entire range, head over here and take a look. I would highly recommend you do, as investing in the future of your skin is doubtless the best beauty decision you can make. In the meantime, enjoy the sunshine!!

 

Products sent by PR for review purposes. I was not paid to review, and all opinions are my own.

Rimmel Stay Matte Liquid Mousse Foundation

Helloooooo kids!

I’m pretty excited about today’s review(Staple switch!), but before I jump in I’m going to start with a quick Resolution update. I’ve not checked my weight in a while, although my diet has been iffy to be honest so I doubt much has changed. This is down to a LOT of social engagements recently, and just being naughty in general. I’m happy to say, though, that I’ve still managed to stick to my oath not to have any snack foods. Go me! The best part, though, is that I’ve managed to stick to my exercise pledge. I now run every day except Sundays, 2 miles every day except Saturday when I run 3. I’m really pleased I’ve managed to stick to it, and though I’m still not good I’m getting better. I’m also getting to the point where I’m actually starting to enjoy it, which is something I never thought would happen! I have my first race tomorrow, a 5k, and I’m pretty nervous, but I also cannot WAIT to get my hands on my finishers medal. It’s become something of a fixation!

So, onto the beauty bit of this review. Today I’m reviewing a foundation I picked up recently, Rimmel Stay Matte Liquid Mousse Foundation in shade 010, Light Porcelain.

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Regular readers will know I have a love for Bare Minerals foundation that cannot be usurped. That stuff aint’ cheap, however, and since I’ve been washing all my makeup off at my midday post-run shower I wanted a little bottle of liquid foundation that I wouldn’t be so bothered about cleaning off twice a day. Enter this little beauty. It’s the ‘squeezable’ version of their infamous matte mousse foundation, apparently the best selling foundation in the UK. I’d tried that stuff before, and though I loved the texture, the lightest shade made me look bright orange. Gutting. As soon as I spotted this one, though, my hopes were raised. Porcelain sounded more promising than Ivory, and sure enough this shade is beautifully pale. I’d even go as far to say it may be the palest liquid foundation I’ve ever seen!

It’s a truly gorgeous texture. Thick, whipped and luxurious, this stuff feels amazing going on. Here’s a snap to show the moussey goodness!

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This stuff also delivers wonderfully on coverage. It’s nice and thick, and covers your skin in a super-soft veil, getting rid of all evils. My biggest skin bugbear is redness; being pale, I have very red cheeks, as well as red skin around my eyes, and this stuff covers both wonderfully. See below…

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As you can see, it has straight away covered up all the redness on my cheeks, nose, chin and eyes, and has left me with a pale, flawless coverage. Even the freckles and tinge of pink on my forehead are gone! It really has done a lovely job, and I’m so pleased.

It feels really nice to use, creamy and soft, but make sure you don’t use a primer with it. It’s so thick that it really sinks into your skin, so if you have a primer it just sits on top of it and slides about. Not a good look! On plain, moisturized skin, though, its a miracle, and at only £5.99 a super cheap miracle!

I thoroughly recommend this stuff; it’s made its way to being my go-to daily foundation, leaving Bare Minerals for more special occasions. There are a number of shades, too, so I suggest you try it out asap! You won’t be disappointed!

 

Magazine Freebies Roundup: December 2013

It’s the season of generosity and giving! Unless you’re a magazine, that is, in which case it’s the season to be as stingy as hell. Yes, I’m afraid I’ve got a rather rubbish freebie post for you today. There is only one magazine giving away a freebie; Red, and not only that but you can only get it in Sainsburys! Wtf guys?!

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It’s the Elemis Pro-Radiance Illuminating Flash balm, and I didn’t buy it because I have it already. It’s pretty nice though, so if you’re hankering for a freebie head on over to Sainsbury’s and pick it up. And that’s it! How rubbish is that!? If you’re still desperate for a freebie, nip on over to my December shop freebies post, which is here!

2013 Christmas Freebies: The Definitive Guide

It’s that time again! I always look forward to seeing what stuff the makeup brands are giving away at Christmas, and I’ve gathered it all here for your viewing pleasure. So without much further ado…

 

 Brand: L’Oreal Paris

Gift: Volume Million Lashes Glitter Topcoat, Red Lipstick, Red Nail Polish

Shop: Boots

Terms and Conditions: Free when you spend over £15 on L’Oreal Cosmetics

Notes: The Mascara looks great fun, and volume million is an amazing line, but note that this is a clear glitter topcoat and is NOT black. The Red lipstick/nail polish is less exciting, pretty generic.

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Brand: Max Factor

Gift: False Lash Effect Mascara, Lipfinity, Blue Nail Polish

Shop: Boots

Terms and Conditions: Free when you spend over £15 on Max Factor Cosmetics

Notes: The mascara is a classic, and the lipfinity is a pretty pale pink, a great all round shade, but the blue polish is pretty gross.

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Brand: Seventeen

Gift: Eyebrow Palette

Shop: Boots

Terms and Conditions: Free when you spend over £8 on Seventeen Cosmetics

Notes: I had to fight not to buy this, as I already have 3 eyebrow palttes, but I’ll probably end up with it anyway. A fab little kit, including a pencil and a highlighter, and you only need to spend £8!

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Brand: Models Own

Gift: Glitter Kit containing Pink Nail Polish, Gold and Silver Glitter Pots and a Nail Buffer.

Shop: Boots

Terms and Conditions: Free when you buy any 2 Models Own products

Notes: The glitter and buffer combo is nice, but I didn’t fancy the bright pink polish; who mixes glitter with pink!? A decent gift though.

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Brand: No7

Gift: Extreme Length Extend mascara, lip gloss, eye shadow, felt tip liner.

Shop: Boots

Terms and Conditions: Free when you spend over £15 on No7 Cosmetics

Notes: A solid gift as always from No7. Nice beige/neutrals for the shadow and lipgloss, but it really seems worth it just for the felt tip eyeliner!

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Brand: Maybelline

Gift: Baby Lips special edition; Cherry Velvet

Shop: Boots

Terms and Conditions: Free when you get 3 for 2 on Maybelline Cosmetics

Notes: Pretty stingy if you ask me, but a limited edition of a popular product will probably turn heads. Only really worth it if you’re already investing in 3 Maybelline products.

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Brand: Rimmel London

Gift: Red Lasting Finish Nail Polis

Shop: Boots

Terms and Conditions: Free when you get 3 for 2 on Rimmel Cosmetics

Notes: Another cheapskate one; one nail polish? Really? And it’s red, which everyone has. No fun.

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Brand: Revlon

Gift: Black and Silver glitter special edition Nail Polish

Shop: Superdrug

Terms and Conditions: Free when you get 3 for 2 on Revlon Cosmetics

Notes: Revlon always do one polish giveaways, so I’m never too tempted, but this one was rather nice. The black/silver chunky glitter looks cool.

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Brand: Revlon

Gift: Silver Holographic glitter special edition Nail Polish

Shop: Boots

Terms and Conditions: Free when you get 3 for 2 on Revlon Cosmetics

Notes: A very dull affair. If you are buying Revlon, head to Superdrug for their freebie instead.

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Brand: Bourjois

Brand: Bourjois

Gift: Gold Leaf effect limited edition nail polish

Shop: Superdrug

Terms and Conditions: Free when you get 3 for 2 on Bourjois Cosmetics

Notes: Sooo pretty, but pales in comparison to the Boots Bourjois gift. So skip this pretty polish and read on…

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Brand: Bourjois

Gift: Iconic Glam gift set containing red lipgloss, red nail polish, eyeshadow trio and mascara.

Shop: Boots

Terms and Conditions: Free when you spend over £15 on Bourjois Cosmetics

Notes: A total and utter win. Standard red nail polish, but also comes with a lipgloss, a black/grey/silver eyeshadow trio and a fab mascara; four full size products! Talk about a bargain! Run, don’t walk!

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Brand: Collection

Gift: Glam Crystals Eyeliner

Shop: Superdrug

Terms and Conditions: Free when you spend over £5 on Collection Cosmetics

Notes: I have one of these, and though it’s pretty I’ve never used it. Nice enough, but Boots have the better offer on this brand.

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Brand: Collection

Gift: Supersize Mascara

Shop: Boots

Terms and Conditions: Free when you spend over £5 on Collection Cosmetics

Notes: Not tried it, but a free mascara is always great, and you only have to spend a fiver. Worth the punt I’d say!

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Brand: Barry M

Gift: Gold/Bronze glitter shard or Holographic Pink Limited edition Nail Polish

Shop: Superdrug

Terms and Conditions: Free when you spend over £6 on Barry M Makeup

Notes: Barry M special editions are always hard to resist, but I’m trying to stop buying glitter. Both lovely, but check out the Boots shades below before you make a decision.

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Brand: Barry M

Gift: Red/Green/Purple glitter shard or Holographic Silver Limited edition Nail Polish

Shop: Boots

Terms and Conditions: Free when you spend over £6 on Barry M Makeup

Notes:I think the red/purple/green is my fave; gorgeous! And only a £6 spend, defo worth it.

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Brand: Miss Sporty

Gift: Nail Polish (assorted)

Shop: Superdrug

Terms and Conditions: Free when you spend over £3 on Miss Sporty Makeup

Notes: Tons of nail polishes to choose from and only a £3 spend. Do it; buy Dr Balm, you can’t lose!

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Brand: B

Gift: Skincare/Makeup Giftbox

Shop: Superdrug

Terms and Conditions: Free when you get 3 for 2 on B products

Notes: I have less than nothing to say here. I included it, but I’ve never tried their stuff, nor am I sure what’s even in the box. Ho hum….

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I’ll put up some reviews of what I actually bought soon enough, but in the meantime, that’s it! Let me know if I’ve missed any, and enjoy your freebies! xx