All being well, in just over 6 weeks, I’m going to be a Mum again.  To say that I’m feeling a little apprehensive about this is an understatement.  Five years is a long time for the mind to heal, forgetting about the sleepless nights and the frustrations at not being able to immediately comfort an unhappy little one.

I love being the Mum of a 5-yr old more than anything, but I’m acutely aware that I didn’t relish those first few months in my new role.  I’m not ashamed to admit that either, I much prefer the company of someone who can talk back to me.  That being said, I shall be patiently awaiting the flood of maternal love that will surely wash over me within minutes of meeting our new family member.  And then I’ll be demanding a belated Mother’s Day present, because… you know, how dare you schedule your entry to coincide with MISSING THE BIG DAY?!

Incase you’re listening little one… any, or you know… ALL of the below will suffice.

mothers-day-beauty-gift-guide-2014

1). It’s an oldie but a goodie.  Liz Earle’s Cleanse & Polish (£14.75) sales must hit the roof come Mother’s Day, I genuinely don’t know any women in my family who wouldn’t love to see this blue bottle pop out of a gift bag.  There’s also free delivery over on the website at the moment until the 25th March and a free sample with every order.

You could even build your own Liz Earle goody-bag for Mum by purchasing the mini 15ml tube and a muslin cloth for only £3.75 – now there’s thoughtful!

2). Each year, when Jo Malone release their bespoke Mother’s Day Floral Boxes (£120), I sit and drool at the thought of receiving something so mind-blowingly extravagant.  Complete with 100ml cologne of your choice (Vetyver for me please sproglet!), this beautiful floral display will melt the heart of anyone you’ve been privileged enough to call “Mum”.  Available from Monday 24th March, exclusively from the Jo Malone Sloane Street boutique.

3). Back down to earth with a beautifully-scented bump now, thanks to this perfectly-presented sweet little cone of bubbles and fizz!  The Mum’s Goodies (£13.50) offering from LUSH contains a limited edition Wonder Woohoo bubble bar, the Secret Garden bath bomb, and a Rockstar Soap.  The perfect way to show Mum that you care.  Just don’t steal the contents while her back is turned, ok?

4). For the ultimate glamour-Mum, look no further than this Paparazzi Compact (£27.65) from the new Joan Collins Timeless Beauty range.  The pretty duo features a classic lipstick/powder combination that makes “on the go” touch-ups a thing of true elegance!  The powder shade is a “neutral” tone to suit most complexions and depending on how bold your influential lady’s beauty tastes are, you can choose between a pink or burgundy lipstick!

5). When it comes to picking a perfume, you can’t go wrong with a delicate rose scent, the queen of all florals.  This Monotheme Apothéose de Rose (£18.00) from Marks & Spencer, offers a modern take on a much-loved theme.  Described as a soft, young and feminine scent – you won’t mistake this beauty for one of granny’s old perfumes.  The packaging is beautiful and will look a proper treat given pride of place at the dressing table.

6). If you haven’t yet heard of bathing brand Kneipp, trust me – you’re about to…

This German, mineral-rich brand offer a wide-range of bodycare products developed around the wonders of hydrotherapy.  The Kneipp Pure Bliss Bath & Body Gift Set (£12.95) will turn Mum’s bath water from boring to blissful in the blink of an eye.  With Red Poppy and Hemp as the workhorse naturals in this set, Mum will be sure to achieve complete serenity.  Even if its only until the water turns cold.

7). For the more traditional fragrant-fiend in your life, you won’t go wrong with a sneaky purchase of Floris’ Night Scented Jasmine Gift Set (£50) which includes a moisturising Bath & Shower Gel and an enriched Body Moisturiser.  This luxurious scent is inspired by the original Jasmine perfume introduced in 1806 by Mr. Floris.  It’s the kind of fragrant heritage that money just can’t buy… err, except luckily for us, it can!  The epitome of elegant gift-choices!

8). When spa-brand Elemis put together a special release that saves almost £30 on the full-price, you have to sit up and take notice.  Particularly when the items included are full-size products!  The Elemis Pro-Collagen Treats Collection (£49.00) comprises two beauty essentials from their iconic Pro-Collagen range: the Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm, and the Pro-Collagen Advanced Eye Treatment.

Both products are housed in a rather cute, silver presentation box that makes gifting just a little bit more glamourous!

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Thin hair? Cheat your way to a luxuriously thick hair bun!

Posted by Lipglossiping On March - 6 - 2014

Unlike most in the fashion and beauty world, the messy bun and top-knot trends are here to stay.  The truth is that for women with plenty of hair, it’s the perfect solution for sweeping your mane away from your face with the least amount of fuss and bother.  For those of us who are less-than-blessed in the plentiful hair department, it serves as a stark reminder of “shit we can’t do”.

Perhaps you can get away with using a hair doughnut to add a little volume to your bun, or perhaps like me, you find that without meticulous strand-placement, you still don’t have quite enough hair to cover the bulky doughnut without creating a healthy dose of can-you-see-my-doughnut paranoia?  If this is you, I may have found a solution that still manages to keep things just as simple.

hair-bun

The Messy Hair Bun from Foxy Hair Extensions delivers a clip-on solution that works surprisingly well.  All you need to do is scrape your own hair back into some semblance of a pitifully small bun, secured with a hair band.  The single benefit of having such fine hair is the fact that I can keep my baby-bun secure all day with just two bands, one for the initial ponytail and one for the wrapped-around-my-finger bun.

After doing this, all you need to do is place the faux-bun over the top of your own and secure it with the provided clips (and bobby pins if needed).  No faffing about looking for your own methods of securing the extension, just align and clip into place.

For my hair colouring, the shade Dark Chocolate was a good match, perhaps just a hint too dark, but as soon as I redo my roots, it’ll be perfect.  Although the Messy Hair Bun is synthetic, it doesn’t look overly shiny or false, the only thing I’m not sure about is that for me, it’s a little too sleek… a little too… ballerina?  I’d prefer it to be a touch messier without such an obvious, neat “swirl” at the back.  Having said that, it shows promise of looking more naturally untidy with each use… any little tugs and pulls will only serve to create a messier better-looking bun.

You can wear the bun-extension as high or as low as you like, attach it off-centre for an oh-so-fashionable side bun or keep things simple as I did.

The Messy Hair Bun is priced at £14.95 and is available online from www.foxyhairextensions.net in a range of 12-shades from the lightest platinum blonde through to the darkest black.

* press sample

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Tune into QVC this Sunday for the first Elemis TSV of 2014!

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 13 - 2014

I’ve just been reading about the upcoming Elemis TSV (Today’s Special Value) which will be available to purchase exclusively on QVC this Sunday from midnight.  It’s a little on the expensive side for a TSV and sadly it doesn’t look like it will be available with an Easy Pay option, but it does offer an astonishingly huge saving on the RRP, along with some truly-targeted skincare.

This Sunday’s Elemis QVC TSV will give viewers a choice between the following two purchase options for the 5 Piece Anti-Ageing Collection

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The first offering is the Pro-Collagen option which includes 4 full size products and 1 “special” size product.

  • Pro-Radiance Cream Cleanser 150ml
  • Gentle Rose Exfoliator 50ml
  • Pro-Radiance Illuminating Flash Balm 50ml
  • Pro-Collagen Marine Cream 30ml
  • Pro-Collagen Advanced Treatment 15ml
  • (all five products are worth £148.50)

Alternatively… and perhaps better suited to more mature skin-types…

FEB_2014_TSV-PRO_INTENSE-AA-CMYK

…is the second collection, the Pro-Intense option which includes 5 full-size products.

  • Pro-Radiance Cream Cleanser 150ml
  • Gentle Rose Exfoliator 50ml
  • Pro-Radiance Illuminating Flash Balm 50ml
  • Pro-Intense Lift Effect Day Lotion 30ml
  • Pro-Intense Eye and Lip Contour Cream 15ml
  • (all five products are worth £199.50)

Both sets will be available at the special price of £62.00 on the day.

For more information, you can check this video out on the collection(s) which will tell you a little more about the products included…

Do you partake in a bit of TSV excitement?  Does this one capture your imagination or is £62 without an Easy Pay option a little too much of a stretch bearing in mind that we’re only one pay-day post Christmas!

Watch the Elemis on QVC on Sunday 16th February – Midnight, 1am, 4am, 7am, 8am, 11am, 2pm, 5pm, 8pm & 11pm on Sky Digital Channel 640, Freeview Channel 16, Virgin Channel 740 and Freesat Channel 800.  Alternatively, you can watch online at www.qvcuk.com/elemis

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February must be formula month, because I’m going gaga over some perfectly-created lipsticks.  Don’t get me wrong… I’m a sucker for some pretty packaging too and can be driven equally wild by a product based purely on it being the perfect shade but the perfect formula?  Well, like I said, it must be a month for it because not only did Clarins blow me away with their sheer (gerrit?) perfection earlir this month, it’s now Estee Lauder’s turn to get me all of a flutter with some incredibly-formulated, deeply-pigmented lip colours.

The new Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipsticks – launched just this month – feature a range of 20-shades that should particularly excite my fellow bold lip fans.  The collection promises to deliver saturated colour and continuous moisturisation with a formula that stays true for up to 6-hours.  Formulated with a new and exclusive Time Release Encapsulated Moisture Complex with Hyaluronic Acid, I’ve been rather impressed with the happy medium the brand have managed to capture between long-wear and comfort.

Have a little look at the two shades that I’ve got here… Tumultuous Pink and Red Ego…

Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipstick in Red Ego and Tumultuous Pink Review Swatch 01

Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipstick in Red Ego and Tumultuous Pink Review Swatch 02

First of all, the packaging is a bit of a departure from Estee Lauder’s classic heavy gold styling… these lipsticks are dressed in navy with gold accents.  The heavy-weight feel is still there but it’s a little more understated in design with that incredibly addictive magnetic closure that feels so satisfying to use.  Application is easy straight from the bullet but as with most bold shades, I prefer to tidy up the edges with a lip brush and the formula of these offers enough slip that I can achieve this easily with just a little extra product applied near the lip-line.

Talking of the formula, although creamy… it feels very light-weight for the amount of pigment it provides.  Infact, I almost want to describe them as being more like a rich gel formula, either way… you know when something just feels technologically advanced?  It’s like wearing an old skool Rouge Volupte without any of the weight or inconvenience of migration/feathering.

Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipstick in Red Ego and Tumultuous Pink Review Swatch 03

The swatches above show two swipes taken directly from the bullet, you can see the shine and the depth of pigment that the two shades – Tumultuous Pink and Red Ego – provide.  Upon fading, they leave a stain which makes them perfect for blotting if you’re not keen on a high-shine lipstick.  I tend to blot Red Ego once but leave Tumultuous Pink just as it applies, it’s a personal preference.

I’ve included shots below of both lipsticks worn on the lips, the pink leans a little more fuchsia on my lips than I expected from the bullet and the hand-swatch but I’d imagine that this may not be quite so apparent on a warmer skintone.  From the shade range on offer, Dominant looks to be a bluer-pink (or possibly just a little lighter) than Tumultuous PinkDefinitely worth swatching on counter first though to get your perfect pink match!

Red Ego is simply a dream.  Shade-wise, it’s my perfect red… rich and dark with just enough of a berry hint to complement a cooler skin-tone.  It looks darker in the bullet than it does on the lips, especially when blotted, but it still retains the kind of richness that your standard pillar-box red just can’t deliver.

Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipstick in Red Ego and Tumultuous Pink Review Swatch 04

Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipstick in Red Ego and Tumultuous Pink Review Swatch 05

The Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipsticks are available to purchase on counter and online from esteelauder.co.uk now, in a range of 20-shades (+ one online exclusive), priced at £24.00 each.

* press sample

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Pamper every inch with Elemis’ Top-to-Toe Beauty Skincare Collection

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 7 - 2014

I have a soft spot for limited edition beauty “collections”, especially when they contain premium bodycare products that, to be honest, I’m too tight to spend full RRP prices on.  You see, I don’t mind splashing the cash on my face or my makeup collection but I’m a terrible tightwad when it comes to body products.  I’m just not dedicated enough to spend £££ on body lotions and bath elixirs, I usually only remember that I’ve forgotten to moisturise my legs when I feel my winter-ravaged shins scratching against my tights halfway through the day.

Elemis have released a Limited Edition Top-to-Toe Beauty Skincare Collection which features a full £115.80-worth of products for £55.00, that’s a £60 saving on the retail prices!

There’s also none of your meagre 5ml or 15ml sample-sizes, each product included in the collection – even if “sample” sized – delivers a minimum of 30ml, which is as much as many full-size products on the market, ensuring that you’ll get to give each item a proper trial.

Pamper every inch with Elemis' limited Edition Top-to-Toe Beauty Skincare Collection

Pamper every inch with Elemis' limited Edition Top-to-Toe Beauty Skincare Collection

One of my favourite things about this new collection is the simplicity of the items included.  Elemis haven’t included any of their more “niche” products in this, there’s no cellulite-reducing products… no foot creams, no temple balms.  Basically, there’s nothing in it that I wouldn’t use on a regular basis in my normal routine, ensuring that I’d get my money’s worth on every item.

The 5-piece collection contains the following award-winning products:
• Pro-Radiance Cream Cleanser, 30ml
• Pro-Collagen Marine Cream, 30ml
• FULL SIZE Papaya Enzyme Peel, 50ml
• Full SIZE Skin Nourishing Shower Cream, 300ml
• Frangipani Monoi Body Oil, 35ml

Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, even Birthdays… this is one of those beauty collections that simply won’t disappoint, each and every item an Elemis classic, a hero-product.

The Elemis Top-to-Toe Beauty Skincare Collection is available to buy on counter and online now from timetospa.co.uk and johnlewis.com, priced at £55.00

* press sample

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New Year skin recovery with The Elemis Radiance Collections

Posted by Lipglossiping On January - 9 - 2014

There’s a certain flatness to this time of year that engulfs all that’s gone before.  The “party season” is nothing but a distant memory of too much Prosecco and too many mince pies and all that’s left behind is the depressing knowledge that it will take far longer to shift the Christmas podge than it took to gain it.  If you’re really lucky (like me), you’ll also be haunted by the thought of your tax return that needs to be filed imminently and a daily mirror reminder of how much your skin detests the combination of pregnancy hormones being wreaked upon it.

I’m dry.  Drier than a teetotaler at an AA meeting.  Sitting here now, I can run my fingers over my face and feel the rough patches… I yearn for the warmth of some Summer sun on my skin and despite my half-hearted efforts at making adjustments to my daily skin care routine, the hormones are winning.

Elemis have recently launched four new Radiance Collections to target particular post-Christmas skin concerns which are ingenious in a neatly-packaged, do-the-hard-work-for-you kinda way.  I’m hoping that one of these releases in particular will go some way to improve the current bleak outlook for my skin, no prizes for guessing that my collection of choice is: Rehydrating.

Elemis Radiance Collection Rehydrating_01

Elemis Radiance Collection Rehydrating_02

Elemis Radiance Collection Rehydrating_03

The four collections: Rehydrating, Balancing, Resurfacing, and Illuminating each come packaged in a mesh wash-bag and offer a minimum of 40% savings over purchasing each item individually.  It’s a great way to kick start your New Year skin care routine in the direction that it’s demanding without completely breaking the bank.   There’s nothing overly-complicated or particularly fancy about these collections, but they’re a good way to take stock of current cleansing routines and shift them up a gear to target particular concerns.

The Rehydrating Collection (for dry and mature skin types) contains: Rehydrating Rosepetal Cleanser 200ml (full size), Rehydrating Ginseng Toner 200ml (full size), and Pro-Radiance Illuminating Flash Balm 15ml.

The Balancing Collection (for normal/combination skin types) contains: Balancing Lime Blossom Cleanser 200ml (full size), Balancing Lavender Toner 200ml (full size), and Pro-Radiance Illuminating Flash Balm 15ml.

The Resurfacing Collection (for skin types in need of post-Xmas detox) contains: Tri-Enzyme Resurfacing Facial Wash 200ml (full size), Soothing Apricot Toner 200ml (full size), and Pro-Radiance Illuminating Flash Balm 15ml.

The Illuminating Collection (for dry and mature skin types) contains: Pro-Radiance Cream Cleanser 150ml (full size), Soothing Apricot Toner 200ml (full size), and Pro-Radiance Illuminating Flash Balm 15ml.

How is your skin faring after the excesses of Christmas?

The collections range in price between £30 and £35 and are available to buy on counter and online from timetospa.co.uk, while stocks last.

* press sample

Win Some Christmas Sparkle from Face Lace!

Posted by Lipglossiping On December - 13 - 2013

Like sparkle?  Like Instagram?

If so, keep reading because I’ve got a great flash giveaway happening over on my Instagram page.

Face Lace, creators of beautifully-crafted, ready-to-wear makeup designs have produced a stunning crystallized mask in time for Christmas.  Crystallised Beauroque (worth £25.79) is a one-of-a-kind extravagance that will ensure you turn all the heads at your Christmas and New Year’s Eve parties.  Not only that, but as a limited edition piece of only 150, you can be sure that you won’t be playing matchy-matchy with any of the other partygoers.

Want to win it?

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Simply upload an Instagram photo of something sparkly: nails, baubles, fairy lights – the possibilities are endless this time of year – and tag the photo with #facelacesparkle so that I can find it on Instagram.

You have until this Sunday at 23.59 (GMT) to take part and the competition is open worldwide.  Entrants must be over 13 and one winner will be chosen at random.

Come on ladies, get snapping!!

A little bit of Guerlain sparkle!

Posted by Lipglossiping On November - 25 - 2013

Are you feeling Christmassy yet?  I’m starting to see a few sets of fairy lights glinting away through people’s curtains and whilst I wouldn’t normally even entertain the idea of decorating before the first week of December has passed me by, I won’t deny it… this year, I’m itching to get my hands on the paper chains.

How about the shopping… is that under control for you?  Have you bagged some bargains throughout the year or are you resigned to a last-minute meltdown on your local high-street?  I’m usually fairly organised (at least in my head) about what I’m buying but this year I’ve been completely lacking in inspiration.  This will inevitably mean that I end up spending more money in an attempt to solve the problem… AND end up with less thoughtful presents!  Grrr!

Christmas grumbles aside, there’s 10% off beauty at Debenhams at the moment and if you’re looking for something with a bit of sparkle to get you in the mood for the festive season, I’ve got a couple of lovely things from Guerlain to share with you…

Guerlain Autumn 2013 Fall Look_1

Guerlain Autumn 2013 Fall Look_2

Guerlain Autumn 2013 Fall Look_3

This warm-toned eyeshadow duo from the French brand in 08 Two Spicy evokes all the spirit of a fading Autumn with a rich, earthy umber and a softly-sparkling copper.  Both shades are finely-milled and soft to apply but you’ll see from the swatches below that pigment is lacking in the copper-shade.  This is designed to be applied as a wash of colour over the eyelid, lifting the complexion with some understated sparkle as opposed to adding anything in the way of substantial colour.

To this end, it works nicely to create a more informal, smudgy look that can be applied without the need for precision as the two shades blend together seamlessly to create a contoured eye rather than a full-on makeup look.

Guerlain Autumn 2013 Fall Look_4

If you wanted to add a little more dimension or take the look from daytime to party-time, the new retractable eye pencil in 04 Katy Navy is my pick of the bunch.  It features a soft but intensely strong pigment with a shimmering metallic hue of blue that would complement a range of eye colours.

There’s very little drag across the eye area during application thanks to a creamy formula that sets quickly and stays put throughout a vigorous swatch wash!  Worn on the eye, it survives fairly well (although not completely) along the waterline but exceptionally well across the lower lashline as shown in the FOTD below.

Guerlain Autumn 2013 Fall Look_5

Guerlain Autumn 2013 Fall Look_6

Guerlain Autumn 2013 Fall Look_7

Guerlain Autumn 2013 Fall Look_8

Guerlain’s Ecrin 2 Couleurs – Colour fusion eyeshadow duo is currently priced at £27.00 (was £30) and Guerlain’s The Eye Pencil – Retractable Cream Khol & Liner is currently priced at £16.20 (was £18) instore and online at Debenhams.com

Do you have your Christmas sparkle sorted yet?

* press samples

When good hormones go bad. My quest to smell like a man!

Posted by Lipglossiping On November - 18 - 2013

As you may have guessed from the title, I’m totally blaming the pregnancy hormones for this one.  Whether or not they are actually culpable remains to be seen but it feels slightly less shameful to rest the responsibility upon my ever-increasing levels of hormonal angst.

Some women eat coal, crave the taste of rubber and leather… me?  Well, I just want to smell like all of those things instead.  You can keep your girly florals, sweet fruits, and vomit-worthy vanillas… give me all of the MAN SCENTS.

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Were my pockets big enough, I’d carry the above candles around with me 24/7, pausing regularly for a sniff before continuing on my way.  My Jonathan Ward Woodstock candle, which I picked up whilst scouring the shelves at T.K. Maxx is the least masculine of the trio and perfect for the season, reminding me of a dampened but very-much-alive forest floor… woody and aromatic.

My Mum picked up the Rigaud Cuir de Kyara candle for me after spotting it nestled on a tabletop at her local Emmaus in France.  She said that the smell of pure, unadulterated leather “nearly knocked her head off” and thus, knew instantly that I would fall in love with it.  She was right.  It’s a blinder and I’m now obsessed with finding other candles from this Parisian brand.

Finally, and thanks to a Zuneta/Amazon bargain, I’m pleased to finally be able to add this Malin + Goetz Vetiver candle to my collection!  I haven’t been able to walk past the display of M+G candles in Liberty for ages without stopping to sniff this one in all its earthy, woody and downright sexy glory.

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But my obsession with man-scent doesn’t just stop at candles.  Oh no!  It gets far more serious…

I bought L’Artisan Parfumeur’s Tea for Two during their Summer sale a couple of years ago and it was love at first sniff but recently, I just can’t get enough of it and have upgraded to a massive 100ml bottle in order to get my fix.  The perfect blend of smoky embers, honeyed tobacco and warming ginger to keep all thoughts of frostiness at bay this Winter.

Ahhh, Molton Brown… I remember when I first came across your distinctively delicious Re-Charge Black Pepper scent (now called black peppercorn) a few years ago whilst staying at a hotel in Basel.  To this day, I kick myself for being good and not stealing all the hotel toiletries, it just felt too naughty to take the ones that I hadn’t actually opened to use during my stay!  Instead, I scoop up other people’s spoils on eBay and long for the candle version!

My final fragrant craving is one that Mr. L is less than impressed with.  He can cope with sharing most of his scents with me, infact… many times, we purchase a fragrance under the certain knowledge that we’re doing so in order to share the bottle (it makes a £70 splurge so much more palatable split two ways).  My desires to wear his smells-just-like-a-freshly-wet-shaved-man Floris Santal*, however, are falling on deaf ears.  I’ve been allowed a quick spritz, twice.  Only twice.  I actually think that might constitute domestic abuse.

Are there any “boy” scents that drive you wild?  And, question is… are you wild enough to wear them?

* press sample

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner! (Or, cleanser).

Posted by Lipglossiping On November - 4 - 2013

Morning all, here are the lucky winners of my recent competition to snaffle a bottle of Face The World Cleanser…

Leanne M. (@LilMissStylish)

Charlotte G.

Peter G.

I shall be in touch with the lucky winners later today!

If you weren’t lucky enough to win a bottle this time around, you’ll be pleased to hear that Face The World are currently offering a BOGOF promotion on their mini gift kits and cleansing lotion – no code needed, just in time for some bargainous Christmas shopping!

Have a great week everyone x

Win a bottle of my favourite cleanser!

Posted by Lipglossiping On October - 15 - 2013

*tap tap* is this thing still on?

Oh, hello!  Remember me?  I’ve been poorly, I’m not quite there yet but I’m feeling a bit better… and I’ve missed you.  I’m not declaring the return of regular posting just yet but I’ve got my fingers crossed that I’m over the worst of it.

Anyway, let’s get back to it, shall we?

Are you feeling Wintery yet?  I’m still struggling under my 4.5 tog duvet, rubbing my icy feet up and down the back of my husband’s calves… he likes it when I do that in the middle of the night.  We’ve got the heavy duvet out of storage but I need to take it to the launderette for a freshen up and I’m a bit scared of launderettes, I don’t know how to make them work.

One thing that has definitely left summer far behind, is my skin routine.  Gone are the morning cleanses with melty balms, rinsing off with splashes of warm water… nuh uh, my skin won’t play those games now.  I still use water when I’m removing makeup but in the mornings, I’m all about the cleansing lotion/toner combination.  My skin barely tolerates water, perhaps it’s these extreme southern climes in which our water seems to contain more calcium than the actual wet stuff but I’m always left feeling taut and parched post-cleanse.

There are a few cleansing lotions that I love, mainly by French pharmaceutical brands including: Uriage and A-Derma but they do always feel a little like a compromise between luxury and the sensible choice.  Damnit, I want my luxuriously-scented cleansing routine without compromising on comfort!

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Enter a relatively unknown British brand by the name of Face The World.  I first used their Refresh & Soften Cleansing Lotion just over a year ago when I received a mini-sample through the post.  It was love at first wash… but there was a problem.  It was only available to buy in-person, via the company’s practitioners and salons, of which there weren’t a huge number.  I don’t know about you, but I’m always tempted toward the path of least resistance and when I ran out, I continued to buy my cleansers online.

However, I’m pleased to announce that Face The World now retail all of their salon-quality products online for the general public.  Including my lovely Rainforest Refresh & Soften Cleanser!

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So, what makes this cleanser such a winner?  Well, let me break it down quickly…

1. It’s got a beautiful lightweight slip and spreadability that means you only need a couple of pumps to cover the whole face.  It doesn’t evaporate on the skin during application, so you can massage away to your little heart’s content and then wipe clean once you’re happily cleansed.

2. It removes my makeup and lets me wiggle my mascara’ed eyelashes between my cleanser-covered fingers without causing searing eye pain.

3. It leaves my skin feeling softened and plumpy.  I sort of want to say “tacky” but that’s not a good description… it just feels, treated…. moisturised and cleansed at the same time.  I still slap on some pure hyaluronic acid afterward but I’m not left running, screaming for my moisturiser.

4. It smells heavenly.

5. It comes in a great big 250ml pump and at £21.60, offers good value for money for a salon-quality product.

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I really think this is more suited to drier skin types like mine… those that benefit from an emollient face wash… whether your skin is maturing or you’re just looking for something less stripping for the colder months ahead, it’s worth checking out.

So, now you’ve read about it… how would you like to win one?

Face The World are offering three of my readers the chance to win a bottle of Rainforest Cleanser, so to be in with a chance of winning, follow the Rafflecopter instructions that are loading below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you aren’t as social as all that, you can also just leave a message below and I’ll make sure that your name is in the hat for one entry!

T&C
1. Start date for this competition is 15th October 2013
2. Closing date for this competition is 23rd October 2013
3. Winners will receive 1x Face The World Rainforest Cleanser (worth £21.60 each). No cash alternatives.
4. Competition is open worldwide.
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Guerlain Tenue de Perfection Timeproof Foundation Review

Posted by Lipglossiping On September - 17 - 2013

Sometimes technology baffles me.  I’m not talking the kind of bewilderment that leaves my Dad staring blankly at the DVD player for hours on end until someone finally takes pity and shows him where the eject button is; I mean the type of bemusement that comes from trying to understand something that employs so much science, you need a minimum of a BSc to know where to start.

Let’s just say then, for simplicity’s sake, the new Guerlain foundation is really rather technical.

Guerlain Tenue de Perfection Foundation Review_1

It’s pretty much an unspoken rule that for a foundation to be long-lasting, I mean… truly marketed on its long-lasting qualities, it will generally suit one particular skintype over another.  Oily-skinned ladies, this one’s for you.  Except, it’s not.  Well, it is, but it’s not just for you alone… supposedly.  Confused?  Me too… stick with me…

Guerlain’s Tenue de Perfection Timeproof Foundation makes no bones about being a wear-proof foundation, it’s been designed to provide the kind of longevity that will see you through the day, and then some.  It sells itself on “unfailing perfection”, an “infallible formula”, and “16-hour hold”.  These are no meagre claims.

Guerlain Tenue de Perfection Foundation Review_2

The thing about this foundation is that, it doesn’t feel like a traditional longwear foundation.  It feels exceptionally lightweight on the skin, delivering a classic velvety texture without immediately seeking out my dry patches (although in fairness, I’m not winter dry at the moment), and coverage-wise, it offers a medium, buildable formula.  This is what I mean about the rule-breaking… this isn’t really how long-wearing foundations are supposed to feel or look.

With regards to how it feels on the skin, for those who are familiar with other formulas, I would say that this feels somewhat similar to the recent Armani Maestro Fusion foundation… it’s a barely-there product with a lot of slip.  Except this one has more pigment, more coverage in a single sweep, and doesn’t highlight dry flakes within seconds of application.

Guerlain Tenue de Perfection Foundation Review_3

I’m not going to try to explain, question or debunk the science behind this foundation because I don’t understand it enough to pretend that I do!  Let me instead, present the information to you as it is written in the press release.  Perhaps between us… we’ll share a greater understanding of the technical aspects.

The formula forms a complexion-enhancing film over the skin through the use – a first for Guerlain – of three volatile oils that evaporate one after the other.  Three different volatilities create a flawless complexion in three stages.

The first masterstroke: the first oil evaporates instantly under the fingers, to ensure perfect wear for the product and allow it to melt into the skin, which immediately appreciates its softness.

The second key step: the second oil coats the skin, more completely and evaporates just after helping the foundation to glide evenly over the skin, providing perfectly uniform coverage.

The third highlight: the final oil is then released to apply and fix the Timeproof complex, ensuring irreproachable correction and all-day hold.

So, my understanding of this is that the first two (of the three) oils, exist to provide a kind of “inbuilt primer” for the foundation.  Encouraging greater glide and skin prep… but that, the key to the success of this foundation is in the fact that these oils “evaporate”, therefore ensuring that they don’t interfere with the formula’s longevity later in the day.  The third oil, I’m not entirely sure about.  As I said, it’s a bit beyond me!

Guerlain Tenue de Perfection Foundation Review_4

Now, back to my trialling…

Well, you can see from the before/after pictures above that the colour match was not good for my skintone.  I used shade 13 Rose Naturel.  I count nine shades available on the retailer’s websites, which appear to be grouped according to undertone: beige, rose, and golden (dore).  Although the rose undertone is obviously correct for me, it looks as though I would need the “clair (light)” version rather than the “naturel (natural)” which I have here.

It appears that there may only be two depth-stages in the rose undertone (the aforementioned clair and naturel)… so I’m not entirely sure how pale this foundation actually goes.  Definitely do some counter-swatching and don’t buy this one blind.

You can see that the foundation evens out the skintone quite nicely but doesn’t eliminate the need for a concealer… this doesn’t provide heavy-duty coverage for blemishes but is buildable for areas of discolouration or uneven skin-tone.

You should also be able to detect that it doesn’t mask any natural luminosity either, both photos were taken within 2-minutes of each other and my skin displays similar highlights without any additional dullness after applying the foundation.  Basically, my skin still looks like skin.

I think that in the colder months, as my skin becomes more parched, I might uncover some issues with this foundation.  After wearing this for around five hours, I did notice that dryness had become more apparent when looking closely in the mirror.  Although the foundation hadn’t slipped from my t-zone – infact it lived up very well to its claims of longevity – it had gathered slightly on the dry patches around my mouth and nose.  Just enough to highlight them.

All in all, I’m intrigued, if not completely sold on this foundation.  It doesn’t help when you don’t have a colour match because your eye is instinctively drawn to the flaws that this accentuates but from the time that I did spend wearing it (indoors), I can vouch for a longlasting, lightweight formula that evens the skintone in a natural way without masking luminosity.  As for the technology, well your guess is as good as mine!

Guerlain Tenue de Perfection Timeproof Foundation is priced at £37 and available to buy on counter and online at debenhams.com, harrods.com and feelunique.com now.

* press sample

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