Thursday, 30 January 2014

My Perfume Collection

Miss Dior Eau de Parfum: This is such an iconic fragrance and it was the first one I added to my collection! First of all, can we just take a moment of appreciation for the bottle of this perfume? I mean, I just wanna sit and stare at it, it's so pretty! The bottom is unusually thick, which makes it a bit heavier and the bow is just so darling! The smell is fruity and citrusy, which is why I usually choose to wear it during the day. I think this fragrance is perfect for a young woman, since it's fresh and fruity, but not too sweet, which keeps the sophisticated feel around. Dior describe it as "pure, precious and elegant". Now, I don't know about the "pure and precious", but I can definitely get on board with the "elegant"!

Hugo Boss Orange Woman Eau de Toilette: This is the only eau de toilette I own and for that reason, I am guilty of using it as more of a body mist than a perfume! For those of you who wonder what the difference is, an EDT has more alcohol in the formula and the fragrance doesn't last as long as an Eau de Parfum. That being said, I have no complains about the lasting power of this fragrance. And, despite what the name suggests, this is not an insanely cistrusy fragrance. The cistrus in it is not overpowering at all. I believe this is a great everyday perfume, since the smell is bright, fresh and well.. Happy! haha I also do love the look of the bottle, it looks very sophisticated.

Chanel Chance Eau de Parfum: this is probably my favourite fragrance (it wins over Lola by Marc Jacobs by a mere whisker!). First of, you know, it's Chanel! In Brazil we have a word to describe perfumes... If you say a perfume smells "rich", it's not that the scent is powerful or something like that. It means it smells like the perfume a rich person would wear! haha And this one smells exactly like that. It's one of the most sophisticated and elegant scents I've ever tried and I love how it makes me feel when I'm wearing it. I guess that's how you find your signature fragrance, when it's the one that makes you feel confident. I also love the packaging and how sleek it is.

Paco Rabbane Lady Million Eau de Parfum: This is definitely a "night out" perfume, which is why I don't tend to reach for it as much as the others. It smells very rich, like the Chanel, but it can be a little overpowering during the day time. This fragrance amps up the glamour and sophistication! I'm not a big fan of the bottle if I'm honest, I find it can look a little tacky with the gold lid. But then again, it's only fitting for the name of the perfume and feelings it evokes! If you're looking for a sexy and glamorous fragrance, look no further!

I also own Lola by Marc Jacobs and you can check out my review of it right here. It is such a nuisance though, it doesn't fit in with my other perfumes at all! haha I guess I'm a little OCD like that!

What are your favourite fragrances? x

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

The Easy Way to Perfect Red Lips

I love wearing red lipstick. It's amazing how much it can boost your self-confidence! I used to think that because of my darker skin colour, I couldn't wear brighter colours or even reds. It all changed when I tried the Kate Moss for Rimmel lipstick in 107, which is a darker shade of red. The fact I didn't absolutely hate it (hehe) was my cue to try more shades and now MAC's Ruby Woo is my favourite lipstick!

If you look up videos on YouTube on "how to apply red lipstick", you will find a multitude of techniques. I think my favourite might be this one by Lisa Eldridge. I will take anything she says on board and I'm on the same page as her when it comes to "when" to wear a red lip. My favourite is when I'm very casual, with a more natural looking make up and then there's that red lip that brightens things up. That's as glamorous as it gets for me! haha

You will notice in the video, there are a million steps you can take to make your lipstick last as long and look as perfect as it can. However, if I'm wearing red lips for a casual afternoon of shopping, I most likely will not bother doing all that. Instead, I have a very simple routine (if you can call two steps a "routine") that gives me the look I want!

All I need for this is a red lipstick and a red lip liner. Mine are from MAC Cosmetics, their lipstick in "Ruby Woo" and the lip liner in "Cherry". I first apply the lipstick straight from the bullet all over my lips without worrying too much about the edges. Then, I take the lip liner and use to perfect my lip shape and tidy up the edges. I then might blot my lips and apply a bit more lipstick, but that is very rare! I found this to be the quickest way to get the look I want and the matte finish of the lipstick makes it last all day!

Let this be a lesson to you all, there are no rules in make up! 
Do you wear red lipstick? x


Sunday, 26 January 2014

Sanctuary Spa Bath Relaxer - Review

I was never really a bath person. Baths aren't really a thing in Brazil and it's not common to have a bath in your house. The only times I've taken baths since moving to England were when our shower was broken! I found it difficult to understand the concept of getting clean in a bath when the water you used is all just sitting there... Am I the only one who finds it kinda gross?? Well, recently I've come to understand that, at least for me, baths are not for getting clean. They're all about relaxation and time for myself. Am I weird?

After making the decision I wanted to take a bath (that's a big one!), I realized I need to pick up a "bath product". I browsed the bath aisle of Boots for a few minutes and landed on this: a bath oil by Sanctuary Spa, which contains a mix of jojoba, almond and evening primrose oils and essential oils and spices. The fragrance is said to be a powerful relaxer.

I probably used way too much product on my first time trying it out. I'm a total bath n00b! I ran a warm bath and used almost half a bottle, which was a little unnecessary, but it was still "bathable"! The product itself does smell lovely and I definitely found it relaxing! It also moisturized my skin brilliantly. I have never felt my skin more nourished and soft than when I used this little baby. 

After using this, I have definitely been converted to baths and can't wait to take my next one! haha
Are you a bath person? Leave your products recommendations bellow! x

Friday, 24 January 2014

What's on my coffee table?

Back when I shared the post about my dressing table, I got a few requests to do more decor related posts. Well, I can't say I'm an expert, but I do know I like to keep our place tidy and I also like pretty things! haha So I went ahead and adapted the "What's on my bedside table?" tag (which I did ages ago, check it out right here) and now I give you "What's on my coffee table?"!

I absolutely love my coffee table. It is the IKEA Klubbo . It's massive and that's exactly what I like about it! I almost went for the smaller version, thinking this would be too low down, but evertyhing about it is great.

I like to keep my candles on my coffee table or else I always end up forgetting to burn them (bad blogger)! The ones currently on there are the ones I mentioned on this post and I think my favourite might be the Rituals Under a Fig Tree. It smells very sophisticated for the price! hehe I also have this huge Audrey Hepburn coffee table book, which I got from my father-in-law for my birthday last year. I absolutely adore it, I always look at it for inspiration. There's also a new one from her time in Rome while filming "A Roman Holiday", which I got for Christmas! Alexa Chung's IT is also on there, but only because it looks very pretty. I understand the hype around it because, I mean, it's HER. But the book itself is very childish. 

 I like to have fresh flowers around whenever possible. I find they completely transform the mood of the room and they just make me happy! I like to keep this cuticle balm on there as well so I can apply it when I'm mindlessly watching tv, or else I never get around to it! Also, the obligatory Playstation controllers... You'll know from this post I'm absolutely obsessed with playing Call of Duty, it's the only game for me! haha And I am in love with my coasters, is that really weird? They look so nice and expensive, but only cost me £12 for 6 at Home Base! LOL

What do you guys think? What do you keep on yours?

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

L'oreal Skin Perfection Micellar Solution - Review

Here's another one to add to the micellar solution frenzy: L'oreal came out with their version fairly recently and I put it to the test!

Why are we so obsessed with micellar solutions? Well, I can personally find two reasons: it's a make up artist's and beauty industry insider's favourite and, therefore, a total must have. And of course, the lazy. They are one of the most practical ways to remove make up and cleanse your skin! 

We all know that after a night out, the last thing we want to be doing is spending our usual 10-20 minutes over the bathroom sink applying the tonnes of products our usual routine includes. And that's where the micellar water come in and "rescues the day/night". We've all heard the horrors sleeping with our make up on will cause to our skin, but I must remind you, a micellar solution is not a proper cleanser. If that's all you use to cleanse your skin, it will become dry, patchy and just plain ol' yucky. Trust me, I speak from experience! 

I'm sure the question in everyone's minds when they see this on their local Boot's shelf, with that tempting price tag (£4.99), is: "Is it comparable to the Bioderma??". I can answer that for you, my lovelies, but it's more than a simple yes or no answer. To begin with, the packaging: it looks lovely and modern and, I mean, it's pink! However, the top part, being that big square, is not the most user friendly. It  makes it a little difficult to get the product on a cotton pad evenly and results in tonnes of waste. But I suppose if you're just a little careful, that can be overlooked. It takes me about 4-5 cotton pads of the stuff to get a full face of make up off (not including waterproof mascara), when the Bioderma does it in 3-4 (and manages my waterproof mascara just fine). I think L'Oreal's offering is still brilliant if it's all you can get your mits on. I've tried the La Roche Posay one, which is more expensive, and I have to say I prefer this little bad boy!

You can find the Bioderma online and at some pharmacies in London (here's a post on where to find one of the stockists and a review on the Bioderma), but as long as I'm not able to purchase it easily on my local highstreet, I will be sticking to the L'oreal one!

Have you tried any micellar solutions? Thoughts?


Monday, 20 January 2014

Repurchased Products

We all have products that make it into our "must-have" list. Sometimes they might not be the most exciting thing or the latest release, but are products which have made their way into our routine and we just don't see ourselves without them! These are some of my most repurchased products:

Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum Foundation: I had the original version of this foundation when it first came out. I believe it has been discontinued, but fear not, this new version is even better! It feels very hydrating on the skin and leaves a nice glow, without looking shiny at all. I think this is the perfect alternative to a higher end foundation at an affordable price. My everyday foundation is the YSL Le Teint Touche Eclat, but if my skin is having a bit of a freak out, I will most likely reach for this, since it has a little bit more coverage. I'm on my second bottle and I thoroughly recommended!

Revlon Colourburst Lip Butters: These are the perfect every day lip product! I've repurchased this colour (Berry Smoothie) about 3 times now, but I also have other shades which I love equally as much! They are so moisturizing on the lips, making them perfect for the colder months. I'll usually pair them with a heavier smokey eye or if I'm just rushing out the door in a hurry, since no mirror is needed!

La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo: I know this is a bit of a "love it or hate it" product, but for me, it's "love it" all the way! I suffered from really severe acne as a teenager and even though my skin had cleared up massively since then, I still get the odd monthly break out and I cannot tell you how much this product helps me. This is my 3rd bottle of this and it's one I don't see myself going without for a long time!

Superfacialist Rose Hydrate Cleanser: I've proclaimed my love for all this Una Brennan on the blog before, so no need to ramble on too long about this! I've loved everything I've ever tried from the brand, but this cleanser holds a special place in my bathroom cabinet. It's ideal for winter, since it really does live up to the name. It leaves your skin feeling plumped and hydrated, but with no feeling of product residue left behind. Plus, the packaging looks really nice. hehe 

Avene Thermal Spring Water: I can't even count how many bottles of this baby I've had. And it's interesting how I prefer the Avene one over any other thermal water I've tried! My husband makes fun of me for buying "bottled water to spray on your face", but it's so much more than that! It's packed with minerals and other good stuff and I use it for everything: before cleansing my skin for a better product distribution, before moisturizer to make it sink into the skin better, to calm the skin after a bit of threading/waxing... Love it!

MAC 217 Eyeshadow Brush: If you're gonna have a double of any brush, this is the one to have! It is SO soft and I use it to deposit the pigment on my eye lids, to highlight the inner corner, to blend out the colour... There's nothing you can't do with this bad boy!

What are your most repurchased products?

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Make a Wish! Astrid & Miyu Jewelry

If there is one big gap in my wardrobe, it has got to be jewelry. I absolutely love the way I feel when I'm wearing a really nice piece and feel naked if I don't have a pair of earrings on. But truth be told, more often than not, I forget to put anything on before leaving the house. In all honesty, I'm always rushing out the door, regretting those extra 20 minutes of sleep, and all my energy goes toward putting my face on. I really want to change that, since I think jewelry is the best way to make any outfit more "you" and more feminine!

Astrid & Miyu is a designer jewelry brand, which was founded in 2011 by two very inspiring business ladies: Connie Nam and Jenny Orlova. They met at the London Business School and say they founded the brand to bridge a gap in the market for unique, feminine and affordable jewelry. And I believe they did just that! They've got dozens of incredible designs and I might be kind of in love with the brand. I also think it's the most lovely detail that both names mean "exceptionally beautiful" in two different languages and they want their pieces to make us feel just like that.

I found the brand while looking for this exact piece, a wishbone necklace. After seeing a picture of Demi Lovato (yes, I know!) wearing one, I became intent in finding a similar one and I'm really happy with this Astrid & Miyu piece! They offer it in gold, silver and rose gold (their collection of gold rose pieces, by the way,  is also incredible!). I went for the gold, which for me is a colour I can wear with most things. It is gold plated brass and the 30cm chain drop is the perfect length for me! I like necklaces that hang a little big lower and this fits just right!

Have you been lusting over anything from Astrid & Miyu? Own a piece that you love? Share in the comments! x

Thursday, 16 January 2014

A Toner Double Whammy: Clarins Toners

Clarins as a brand was founded in 1954 by a Jacques Courtin (I always thought it was founded by a woman for some reason!). The name Clarins comes from a character he played in a school play years before. He liked it so much, he added it to his own name, becoming Jacques Courtin-Clarins (that's a rather posh name!). Jacques started by mixing oils and selling them in his own salon back in the day and his products were very popular with the rich and famous of the time.

Since then, Clarins has become the leading brand of luxury skincare in Europe. The quality of the products is undeniable, but the French allure of the brand is something that definitely draws me in even more! Lately, I've been using Clarins toners exclusively and I have got only good things to say about the results! Firstly, the Clarins Gentle Exfoliating Toner has become an all time favourite and a must have. My main issue with my skin are the acne scars that are left behind after every-little-blemish I get. They are tiny dark spots which can last for months! Given that, exfoliating my skin is an absolute must and it's something I can do on an every day basis thanks to this toner. Clarins recommends to only use it twice a week, but I've had absolutely no problems with my daily use (as long as I'm careful not to use it alongside other exfoliating products). It has helped my acne scarring fade that much faster. The spots now last a few weeks, rather than months and I couldn't be more pleased! Now, since it started getting colder, I felt the need for and extra boost of hydration, so I decided to go for their Toning Lotion with Camomile. Toner is usually the forgotten step in skincare just because it's so hard to have quick, noticeable results with it. After using this toner for a few months, it is a step I will definitely not be skipping in my routine. It makes all the difference when I wake up in the morning, the radiator on all night, and my skin doesn't feel dry or tight in the slightest. 

There are still so many other Clarins products I want to try, but I also love their Pure Melt Cleansing Gel. It is perfect for the winter months, since the gel turns into a nicely moisturizing oil when you rub it on your face and makes it as smooth and fresh as can be! 

Have you tried anything from Clarins? Anything you've got your eyes on? x

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

My 2014 Goals!

If you can handle another "2014 goals" post, here's mine!

Eat more fruit and veg.
Kind of an obvious and general one, but it is definitely the place where I have the most room for improvement! Instead of making the goal to "lose weight" or "ban this or that food", I've decided to put all my focus into adding things to my diet instead of taking things away. I wanna try to find new ways to add veg to our meals and find new recipes. We've been in a bit of a rut lately where we are always cooking up the same things for tea and it's driving me a bit crazy. haha I have no shortage of ideas for breakfast (thanks, Instagram!), but I really struggle with main meals and this is the year I plan to change that. I might even start writting some recipes down a notebook, how cute would that be??

Juice more often.
I wrote about my first experience with juicing on this post from September last year. It's something that can be a bit of a struggle to start with, but the benefits are incredible. I started doing it simply because of the quick (not permanent) weight loss, but I never felt healthier than when I was drinking those green juices every day. The best part about all of it, I think, is how it can really kick start a major change of habits to any one. You would deduce that after only drinking juice for 3 or 4 days you would start craving "bad foods", when in fact, exactly the opposite happens! I've never craved a big salad more in my life than when I when I was juicing regularly! And, I mean, we bought an expensive juicer that has just been sitting in the cupboard for months, what's the point of that?

Move more.
This is the big one for me, without a doubt. If I eat well, I tend to keep eating well. But taking that first step towards becoming more active is the hardest thing. I mean, it's physics right? "A stationary object tends to resist being moved." Jokes aside, I do love exercising regularly. I just need to go back to 2012, the year I was in the best shape of my life, and remember how good it felt reaching goals with my running. I hate to admit how much I let myself go in 2013, but it's time to pick myself up and dust myself off. After all, I still want to run a marathon before we have a baby and I need to get on that ASAP (the marathon, not the baby!), I'm not getting any younger. :)

Keep the blog updated.
I started this blog in October 2012 and I'm so thankful to everyone who comes on here and shows their support. And even to the ones who come here and never comment at all.! I know I do that as well, but it doesn't mean I like the blog any less. I feel really lucky to have achieved those numbers on the side bar and to have people who actually read and show an interest on my blog. However, I have taken some massive breaks from blogging and it always makes me wonder how much more I could have achieved if I had just kept it consistent. So I decided, this is the year I find out where I can get with this little baby! No more huge breaks!

Now, I want to hear from all of you:
What are your goals for 2014?


Monday, 13 January 2014

Mood of the Moment: Black Ankle Boots

I remember when ankle boots made their come back. It was the mid 2000's, I believe. I wasn't remotely into fashion back then, but I clearly remember thinking how absolutely ridiculous and unappealing they looked. I couldn't understand why anyone would choose such an unflattering length for their boots! I felt it made calves look like twigs and made legs look shorter (the last one is actually a fact, mind you!). Fast forward 10 years and the day I never saw coming has arrived: I am CRAVING a pair!

I'm guessing it's all Alexa Chung's fault and her love for the Chelsea boot. I'm not a massive fan of hers, but her amazing style is undeniable. I really believe ankle boots are one of the key pieces to achieving that effortlessly chic look, and my wardrobe has got a huge gap for them. I currently own a mammoth one pair of riding boots and I gotta say it is such a pain to have to put them on every time I leave the house! I guess my main reason for wanting a pair of ankle boots comes down to laziness: they're easier to put on! God help me... haha

I also love their versatility, the way they can dress down and "rockify" a little cocktail dress, or how they're great for a day out and about. Plus, they are the perfect transitional piece: rock it with tights during winter or shorts during the summer. I hereby officially declare a black ankle boot a must-have!


Saturday, 11 January 2014

Winter Skin Friends

Nuxe Creme Fraiche de Beaute: This is a rich, thick, creamy moisturizer and I don't know what kind of magic is in this pot that makes it sit so light on the skin. It moisturizes brilliantly and keeps it that way throughout the day (and night!). If you have oily skin that tends to go towards combination/dry during the winter, do not hesitate to pick this up. Plus, it's got the Ruth Crilly seal of approval!

Indeed Labs Hydraluron: The blogosphere's most talked about serum, as made famous by Caroline Hirons! It has become and essential for me during winter. I picked this up a good dew months ago and wasn't thrilled with the results, but it's really been a life saver during the colder months. 

Nuxe Reve de Miel lip balm: My new favourite lip treatment! I'm still all about the Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream for the night time, but I never leave the house during the day without a thick layer of this lip balm on. It protects my lips from the cold winds like nothing else!

Nivea In-shower Body Moisturizer: For the lazy girls out there, this is definitely enough on its own during the warmer months, but it's been more like a "primer" for a thicker moisturizer during winter. I still wouldn't skip this step, as it makes my skin super soft and moisturized!

Soap & Glory Righteous Butter: I don't tend to moisturize my skin year round (I fit into the lazy girl category mentioned above), but I've been loving this body butter this winter! I like to apply it right out of the shower, while my skin is still a little wet and my pores open from the hot shower! Plus, like everything else from Soap & Glory, it smells lovely, my husband even commented on it. hehe

What are your essential for winter skin care? x


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