This Dress

This dress is stunning.

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Natalie Portman in Dior at the Thor: The Dark World UK Premier.

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NARS Laguna

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NARS Laguna £26 Space NK

Whilst I tend to approach most Bronzers carefully in fear of unsightly orange lines on my paler than pale skin, Nars Laguna is one I have wanted for a very long time. On my last pay day, after yet another mention online, I finally took the plunge (no pun intended) and £26 later I was introducing it to Make Up Towers; a subtle sun kissed glow was to be mine.

The Nars Bronzers come in three shades and Laguna is the most appropriate for my skin tone. The lightest shade of the three, it also has a hint of shimmer when in the pan but I don’t find this too noticeable when applied. Whilst I had read that Essie didn’t rate this product too highly as she found it slightly too orange for her pale skin, I always apply with caution as I think too much of this on my cheeks will definitely give me that undesirable Oompa Loompah look, however applied with the right kinda brush (&Other Stores Shimmer Powder Brush – a dupe for the MAC 187) it adds the definition I need and a warm healthy glow. In fact, I’ve been using this on its own without my trusty Benefit “Hervana” now for the past couple of weeks as I’m really pleased with the look it gives. I also don’t think I’ve treated a product with such care before as I live in fear of dropping during clumsy hour (6.30-7.30AM in case you’re wondering) and it shattering in the pan!

Another thing I particularly love about this product, and it goes with all Nars blushers too, is the packaging! It is so lovely to just hold – does anyone else feel like this?

Does anyone else use Nars Laguna – what are your thoughts?

Hand Food

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This one has done the rounds before on the blogosphere, but now it’s my turn to give this hand cream a little review. It’s no secret I love hand cream and I carry it with my everywhere I go (Nothing beats soft hands) and ‘Hand Food’ from Soap and Glory is the only one I continue to repurchase. It leaves your hands so so soft and the smell is incredible! It absorbs really quickly into the skin so you don’t get that greasy residue some hand creams tend to leave behind. It’s longevity is also something to write home about. It’s brilliant value for money too AND you can also get a mini one to fit in your hand bag! Who knew a hand cream could get me so excited!

You can buy hand food £5 for 125ml from Boots – definitely worth every penny.

Have you guys tried Hand Food or any other Soap and Glory products?

Exfoliating Toners

Up until 2 months ago, I had never heard the words “Exfoliating Toners” put together let alone included in the same sentence as one another. That is until I stumbled upon Caroline Hirons and her AMAZING blog Beauty Mouth – an oracle for any skin care question/thought/musing you could possibly have. It is on her recommendation that I have gone out and bought two Toning lotions that promise to do magical things to my face and I must say, they are definitely making improvements.

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Can we all give a big welcome to Clarin’s Gentle Exfoliating Brightening Toner and Alpha H Liquid Gold. Believe the hype people, these products when used together are fantastic. The acne on the left hand side of my face is on its way out and the scars it has left behind are slowly starting to fade. The right hand side of my face is still a work in progress but it is SO much better than what it was a couple of months ago. Although both products advise using them two to three times per week, I’m naughty and use the Clarin’s daily in the AM, and Alpha as part of my evening skin care routine, again, on a daily basis. And do you know what? I don’t care,  it’s working. Both leave a tingle on the skin – Alpha H more so than the Clarin’s and I feel that the Clarin’s toner leaves more of a luxurious feel behind.

Whilst both products don’t come in cheap they are worth every penny and will be repurchased when they see their last days.

Have any of you guys tried Alpha-H/Clarins? What do you think of Exfoliating toners?

The Dream Team

Anyone who takes a peek inside the Foundation Drawer in my makeup tower will instantly see that I have quite a few options for my base in the mornings. Full coverage foundations, a selection of tinted moisturisers and my go to Dr. Jart BB cream, I am always on the lookout for a little something something to join the base team that will match my paler than pale skin tone and cover my acne so I don’t resemble a pizza day to day. And I can tell you ladies and gentleman, after months of searching and mixing, I have found two products that tick all the right boxes.

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Garnier Five Second Blur and Clinique Moisture Surge CC Cream in Very Light – two newbies on the block and when used together, give a flawless, natural look. The CC Cream is probably the best colour match I have ever found for my skin and although it gives a light coverage, it evens my skin tone, conceals my heinous spots and when used on top of Garnier’s Primer, gives my skin a gorgeous dewy look. A couple of dots of concealer on top of the bad guys and bobs your uncle (well, not my uncle but someones) and I’m ready to face the day.

Have you guys tried Garniers and/or Clinique’s latest offering? What do you think of these products?

What’s Working

So I thought I would keep you all updated with my quest to find a skincare routine that WORKS. Acne has now plagued my life for about 6 months now and I have tried a plethora of brands that promised to banish the blemishes – some have worked, some haven’t. These are a few that have shown me what good skin looks and feels like. Individual reviews to follow.

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Clockwise from top:

Simple Kind to Skin Vital Vitamin Night Cream / Indeed Labs Hydralauron / Ren Clear Calm 3 Replenishing Night Serum / Alpha-H Liquid Gold / Simple Kind to Skin Protecting Moisture Cream / Ren Clear Calm Clarifying Clay Cleanser / Clarins Gentle Exoliator Brightening Toner / Emma Hardie Amazing Face Cleansing Balm (Centre)

My experience with Biore Blemish Fighting Ice Cleanser

After a visit to my GP a couple of months ago, I was advised to use cleansers that contain Salicylic Acid to banish the spots that grace my cheeks. Off I popped to my nearest Boots to scour their product range containing the aforementioned ingredient when I came across Biore. I have never heard of them before so I was intrigued.

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Salicylic Acid? Check. Promises of clearer skin? Check. I was sold and £4.99 later I totted off home to try it out.

I’ve tried this product now on two five day cycles over the space of two months. The first time around, it left my skin feeling squeaky clean and left a nice cooling sensation after use. I continued to use every night before I went to bed to get rid of remaining traces of makeup, followed by oil-free moisturiser (Neutrogena in case you’re interested) and began to notice that my acne seemed a little less red after each use. Good stuff? WRONG. Bad, very bad. What happened on day four made me feel like the ugliest person alive. I awoke with dry, white, flaky and very sad skin. Apparently dryness is a side effect of Salicylic Acid which I wasn’t aware of previously. A couple of Origin’s Drink Up hydration face masks later and my skin didn’t look quite so horrendous but Biore was put to one side and used instead as a makeup brush cleaner (which is does very well!)

I don’t quite know what possessed me to pick Biore up again this week in my bathroom but I did it, I washed my face with it, and once again I am sat in my office looking as if someone has thrown a sack of flour over my face.

Lesson learned. Never again.

*Skincare works differently for everyone, so even though Biore hasn’t worked for me it may be effective on your skin.