20 December 2013

Beauty Box: Birchbox December 2013

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Noabay Moisturising Milk Cleanser // I'm not really a fan of milk cleansers, especially ones that you aren't meant to wash away, instead you just wipe it off. I think this one will be going into my giveaway box.

BeeKind Body Lotion // I really love the lemon verbena scent and the formula is really nice. If I didn't have so many body moisturisers to use then I'd buy the full size of this straight away.

Number 4 Non-Aerosol Hairspray // This is a really interesting product and would be perfect for travel as it's tiny. Excited to see how well it works and if the crunch-free hold actually works.

Nail Rock Nail Velvet // I'm really pleased I got the velvet version as I know I wouldn't have used the glitter one. I'll be testing it out at the weekend so I'll be sure to blog how they look. I just hope removal isn't too bad!

Lipsy London Glam Fragrance // A mix of orchid, jasmine, peony and incense. Surprisingly I really like the scent of this! It reminds me slightly of Lady Gaga's perfume as they have similar notes. I would think about buying the full size of this especially if I've got Birchbox points to use.

Alima Pure Luminous Shimmer Eyeshadow // I'm not a fan of loose eyeshadows so wont be using this one but it's a really pretty colour.

Twistband // It's not often I use normal bobbles anymore as I prefer these twistbands. This one's thinner than the other ones I have which is nice.

I really love the box design and I'm going to re-use it for one of the presents I'm giving. I'm not hugely impressed with the contents though. It's the same as the Glossybox, I was expecting something better with it being the Christmas box.

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19 December 2013

Beauty Box: Glossybox December 2013*

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Yin Yang Skincare Rich Skin Food x2 // This moisturiser nourishes and repairs fine sensitive skin which sums up my skin! The scent of this reminds me of Weleda Skin Food but it feels completely different on the skin. It's lighter and sinks in instantly with a sort of matte feeling.

Wilkinson Sword Intuition Naturals Razor // Although I'll use the razor I think it's a bit strange to include it in a beauty box.

Maybelline New York Volum' Express Colossal Smokey Eye Mascara // I'm always pleased to see a mascara in beauty boxes as I love trying them out. Surprisingly I haven't tried this one from Maybelline before.

Beautiful Movements Cosmetics Nude Lip Gloss // I'm not a huge fan of lip glosses but this feels more like a lip balm and isn't sticky. The colour is also really nice and natural, perfect for a smokey eye.

Seche Nail Polish in Blanc II // Although I wouldn't have picked this shade out myself it's the perfect colour to use for my Christmas nail transfers. I already own one of the nail polishes from Seche vite and although I don't get on with the top coat, these polishes are lovely. They've incredibly glossy and opaque.

Overall I have to say I'm not impressed with the box especially as it's Christmas. Any other month and the box would be ok but I was expecting something a bit more fancier or at least a candy cane or chocolate coins.

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18 December 2013

NOTD: H&M Stay Golden

H&M Stay Golden gold glitter avon liquorice black creme nail polish notd rottenotter rotten otter blog
Supplies used... 
CND Sticky Base Coat
Avon Licorice // two coats
H&M Stay Golden // one coat
CND Speedey Top Coat

This the nail polish combination that I wore for my works Christmas meal. I wore a black dress with a bit of gold beading/detail so thought this was manicure was perfect. Avon Licorice is the perfect black nail polish but it looks like they're not selling it anymore which is a shame. It's opaque in two coats and is extremely glossy, it's the best black I've tried.

I'm not a huge fan of glitter polish, I love the way it looks but hate the removal of it, but I couldn't not use a glitter with it being Christmas.

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16 December 2013

Mini Reviews 011 // balance Me // Nude // Estee Lauder // Maybelline

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Balance Me Radiance Face Oil - This face oil has become a staple in helping to heal spots quickly without drying my skin out. This is all thanks to Fee who blogged about it and got me to start using it. It's also great as a normal face oil, it's extremely hydrating and leaves the skin looking nicely dewy. It's 100% natural origin so there's no nasties in it. The rollerball isn't the best packaging so I'm going to get the bottle next time but it is nice for trying it out first. £15 for 10ml rollerball and £30 for 30ml.

Nude ProGenius Treatment Oil - When I bought the Nude Cleansing Oil there was an offer to get a small bottle of the ProGenius Oil for free. This was an offer I could not resist as it had been on my wish list for a long time and the full size is expensive. Unfortunately for my bank balance, I have completely fallen in love with this oil. The majority of the time I've been using a couple of drops mixed in with my moisturiser of choice as I find this is the best way for it to sink in. A couple months back when my eczema flared up on my face and my skin was extremely dry and flaky this oil was the only thing that helped. I still have a lot left as you only need one or two drops so I haven't quite got round to the idea of spending £58 on the full size.

Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye - I was given this mini tub of eye cream as a sample when I bought the Advanced Night Repair. For a start I really don't like the smell of this, it smells like it's full of alcohol. I liked that it has more of a gel texture as I get on with gel eye creams better, I don't like anything too heavy and thick. It's been nice to use but I couldn't justify £38 for only 15ml when I haven't fallen in love with it. Caudalie Premier Cru Eye Cream on the other hand, I would pay the price for.

Maybelline Colour Tattoo In Pink Gold - I was pretty late jumping on the Maybelline Colour Tattoo bandwagon and I'm not really sure why it took me this long as I love cream shadows and use them on a daily basis. I'm so glad I did as they've become some of my favourites. This pink shade is a bit unusual for me as I'm not a huge fan of coloured eyeshadow even if it is only pink. This shade, as the name suggests, has a hint of gold to it and it's the perfect base for a more neutral shadow like Urban Decay Sin or Virgin. The formula is great too, it doesn't crease even without a primer underneath. Since buying this one I've bought several more of the neutral shades which I've already blogged about. £4.99 each.


10 December 2013

Mini Reviews 010 : Melvita // Vichy // Origins // Clarins

mini reviews 013 Melvita Vichy Origins Clarins rottenotter rotten otter blog
Melvita Rose Floral Water - I picked this out as it came up as an offer while I was buying something else from Feel Unique and thought I'd try it out as I'd just finished the toner I was using. I have to say I'm quite disappointed by it but luckily I only paid a couple of pounds for this smaller size. This is suited for those who have sensitive skin which I have so I thought it would be perfect. It's almost too delicate and feels like I'm just spraying tab water onto my face. I haven't noticed any benefits when using it and although I'm going to use it up, I will not be buying another bottle or recommend it. £16 for 200ml.

Vichy Aqualia Thermal Eye Roll On - This on the other hand, I absolutely love! I hadn't read anything about it but ordered it completely on a whim as I wanted a roller ball eye cream. The roller ball is really cooling and perfect for when I wake up and my eyes are puffy. Also when my hey fever is bad in the summer this really helps to soothe my skin. The product itself is a gel which means it's extremely light on the skin but is still moisturising enough. I don't like heavy eye creams, especially in the mornings, so this is perfect for me. £14.25 for 15ml.

Dr. Andrew Weil For Origins Mega-Mushroom Skin Relief Advanced Face Serum - First prize for product with the longest name goes to this serum! I got a generous sized sample of this serum about a year ago and fell in love with instantly. I was able to use it enough to know I definitely wanted to buy the full size. I had a couple of other serums to use first but I finally bought this serum a couple of months ago. I still like it just as much as I did when I first tried it. I use this serum for when my skin needs something soothing but still moisturising and pair it with the moisturiser from the same range. This also helps the appearance of redness which I suffer from because of eczema. £46 for 30ml or £58 for 50ml.

Clarins Blue Orchid Face Treatment Oil - I've wanted to try one of the Clarins Treatment Oils ever since Kate raved about the Lotus version. I chose Blue Orchid when making my order as I have more dehydrated and dry skin so thought this best suited me although I don't think you can go wrong with any of them. A couple of drops massaged over the face and it feels, and smells, like you're in a spa. I reach for this when I have visible dry patches on my skin as they are instantly soothed and disappear after just one use. For days when my skin isn't so dry, I like to mix a drop or two into my moisturiser for an extra boost as I find it sinks into my skin more easily. This is currently the only facial oil I have in my collection and I'm in no hurry to try something new. The packaging is simple, it looks nice sitting on my dressing table, but also really easy to use and control how much product you're using. I've been using this for a while now and it hardly looks like I've used it and despite the price, it's going to last a really long time making it more affordable. £24 for 30ml.

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09 December 2013

Christmas Gift Ideas // Beauty Selection Boxes & Perfume

Over the past couple of weeks I've loved watching and reading everyone's Christmas gift guides. A few favourites are Anna's, Lily's, Fleurs, Jenny's and Rebecca's. I don't feel like I could top theirs nor do I want to repeat products already featured. Instead I'm just going to share some of the gifts I'm giving this year.

For a couple of friends I've created beauty selection boxes with a couple of my favourite products that I think they'd like. With this you are able to set a budget which can be as low or high as you want. This can easily be done as part of secret santa which is what I did last year for work. I also made good use of Boots 3 for 2 offer! You can see how I've decorated the front of old Birchboxes here using some washi tape. I filled the boxes with packaging from an Origins order which I saved as I knew I'd use it at some point.
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Anyone else still thinking what to put on their Christmas wish lists? I know I've only just finished mine despite it being December. One thing that's always on my wish lists, whether it's Christmas or Birthdays, is perfume. This year it's Escentric Molecule 01 which has been on my list of perfumes to try/buy ever since it was first raved about.

I thought I'd share some of my old favourites, recent buys and new-ish releases. It also gave me a good excuse to get the fairy lights and tinsel out of the cupboard early before we've even bought our tree. We always buy ours later than everyone else it seems but we're getting it and decorating it tomorrow.
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Thierry Mugler Alien // A rich floral woody amber containing jasmine sambac, wood and white amber. 

Taylor Swift Taylor // I'm not a huge fan of the bottle of this perfume, I much prefer the look of her two other perfumes but if the scent is nice then I can look past the design. The fragrance begins with a burst of fresh fruits and flowers, blending luscious lychee and sparkling tangerine with a whisper of magnolia petals. Evoking a sense of femininity, the middle is a blushing bouquet of some of Taylor’s favourite flowers – peonies, hydrangeas and vanilla orchids. Anchoring the base is creamy sandalwood, warmed by an inviting mixture of apricot nectar, cashmere musk and a blend of woods.

Marc Jacobs Honey // Honey opens with a memorable melody of juicy mandarin and pear which is later followed by a passionate heart of white florals, orange blossom and of course, honeysuckle. The added extras of peach, apricot and golden vanilla, create a blissful scent which bathes the skin in a sense of warmth and appreciation.
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Thierry Mugler Angel // I love the magnetic lid to this perfume and that the bottle is refillable. A perfume that I think the majority of people love! Described as an oriental vanilla fragrance, Angel is a mix which includes top notes of Melon, Coconut and Mandarin Orange, middle notes of Honey, Blackberry, Orchid, Peach and Rose and base notes of Tonka Bean, Amber, Patchouli, Musk, Vanilla, Dark Chocolate and Caramel

Juicy Couture Viva La Juicy Noir // On a Christmas note the pink packaging reminds me of the glass baubles we have. If you've wanted to try this fragrance along with the original Viva La Juicy then you can buy a rollerball which is just under £10 to see if you like them which is what I did before buying this one. Sensual and arresting, Viva la Juicy Noir is a succulent blend of ripe berry notes, sultry amber and bright gourmand accents that explore the seductive side of the classic Viva la Juicy fragrance.

Elie Saab La Parfum // Available from Feel Unique is a gift set containing a 50ml and 10ml bottle for the same price as the 50ml on it's own and it comes in a beautiful box. The top note opens on a sun-kissed, radiant orange blossom, as an ode to light. The middle note develops into a jasmine absolute, a legendary flower in perfumery, imparting voluptuousness and elegance to the fragrance. It combines with a pure, modern patchouli heart. The base note unfolds into a cedar woody accord adding character and a lingering trail, while the honey rose envelops the composition in a beautifully addictive notegift ideas rottenotter rotten otter blog 6

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07 December 2013

Finally It's Mine

by terry baume de rose lip balm rottenotter rotten otter blog
Finally the time has come and I can open this little pot of goodness, the By Terry Baume De Rose. I added this lip balm to my Space NK order back in October when there was a really good discount code and free delivery offer on. I was half way through Nuxe Reve De Miel though so I told myself I had to finish it before I could open the By Terry. It took all my will power not to open it and just try it once.

I used this for the first time last night and I instantly knew why there is such a hype around this product. It is a dream to use; the packaging feels expensive and luxurious, the rose scent is divine and it makes your lips feel incredibly soft. Yes it is incredibly expensive but perfect to treat yourself to.

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06 December 2013

Double Shampoo

double shampoo rottenotter rotten otter blog I double cleanse my face on a regular basis without really thinking about it. How had I never thought about double shampoo? We cleanse our face first to get rid of make-up or dirt and then a second to cleanse our skin so why not a first shampoo to get rid of product build up, dirt and grease and then a second to cleanse the scalp? For the past month or so I've been double shampooing each time I wash my hair and it's really made a difference to how my hair and scalp feel.

First off the hair by my scalp feels lighter once dried. I always thought my hair was clean after washing before, who wouldn't?, but it's never felt this clean and fresh before. Double shampooing hasn't dried my scalp out which I thought it could have especially as I have eczema on my scalp. In fact it's been the opposite. Double shampooing seems to have made my eczema even better!

For the first shampoo I just grab any shampoo from my cupboard but I always follow up with the Philip Kingsley Itchy/Flaky Scalp Shampoo to help with my eczema.

Another bonus is my hair stays cleaner for even longer. I've probably been hiding under a rock somewhere while everyone else has been double shampooing for years but it's new to me and working so I'm going to carry on.

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04 December 2013

Project Sample Use Up 012

project sample use up 012 rottenotter rotten otter blog La Roche-Posay Toleriane Soothing Protective Skincare - From the couple of uses I got out of this mini tube the formula felt a little too thin for my dry skin so I wont be buying the full size.

Jo Hansford Expert Colour Care Intensive Masque - This was a really nice mask to use and made my hair feel extremely soft. It's quite expensive though, around £25, so I don't think I'd buy the full size. There's cheaper hair masks that still give great results.

Lubin Paris Nuit De Longchamp When trying a perfume sample for the first time I always spray it on a tissue first just in case I don't like it and don't want my skin/clothes smelling of it for the rest of the day. Luckily I did this with this perfume as I really hated the scent! It's a powdery old lady scent and needless to say I will not be buying this as I couldn't even use the sample.

Acqua Di Parma Colonia Assoluta - Another perfume that I just don't like! Luckily only a tiny sample bottle so no money wasted.

L'Occitane Shine Mask - I really liked this hair mask, even more than the Jo Hansford mask. I have a million other hair masks to use already and again, this is £20 so not cheap. 

Aromatherapy Associates Revive Morning Bath & Shower Oil - I really hoped not to fall in love with this bath oil but I did! It's expensive but I think I'm going to buy the sampler set so I can try the other scents. 

Espa Fitness Bath Oil - Eeek I've finished the last bottle from the Espa bath oil set! I really loved these and will be buying a full bottle of one of them at some point. They're perfect for this time of year as well when you just want to relax in a hot bath in the evening and your skin is dry. 

Macadamia Healing Oil Treatment - I really liked this hair oil but it doesn't beat Moroccan Oil for me. 

Origins Modern Friction - I'm not a fan of exfoliators in general as I feel like they just scratch and irritate my sensitive skin. This was quite a nice one though as it wasn't too harsh and the formula is creamy. I wont be buying the full size though as I know I just wouldn't use it.  

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Riche Soothing Protective Cream x2 - As the name suggests, this version of Toleriane is thicker and I really liked how it felts on my skin. I won't be buying the full size as I have enough moisturisers to last me life time, or a least for the next few months.

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03 December 2013

The Repurchases 002

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With the amount of products I own and have tried, I always thought I never repurchased products but looking back over my first The Repurchases post and this one, turns out I do. All of this lot are the first repurchases but I can see myself buying them all again and again.

After falling in love with a mini tub of Emma Hardie Cleansing Balm I tried to wait till I'd finished my current balm cleanser until repurchasing but I failed. With a discount code on Feel Unique I couldn't help it and took the opportunity to buy it slightly cheaper.

I never would have thought to try a mens shaving cream for my legs but this one from Bluebeard Revenge is one of the few products that doesn't irritate my skin. I just can't use the cheap shaving foams you can buy from the super market, they irritate my eczema. It's about £10 for the tub and lasts a decent amount of time, you only need a small amount and it lathers up really well. I also love the soapy scent!

Orly Polishield is the only top coat I've repurchased so far and that's for a reason. It makes your polish dry incredibly quickly and makes your nails look like a gel manicure instead of a do it yourself.

I'll be repurchasing the Philip Kingsley Itchy/Flaky Scalp Toner for the third time soon as I've nearly finished this bottle. I apply this after I've washed my hair and towel dried it but before I apply leave-in conditioner and oil to it. There are certain areas of my scalp that I usually get eczema so I don't apply it all over but it works miracles. Usually my hair is itchiest while it's drying but I don't have that problem anymore when using it. This has been a life saver along with the Itchy/Flaky Shampoo, another one I'll be repurchases for a long time. It smells like apples witch is an added bonus.

The Korres Guava Shower Gel is a must have in my bathroom cabinet. It smells like summer in a bottle which is perfect when it's freezing outside and you want something to remind you of hotter weather.

These three Urban Decay Eye Shadows are the first eye shadow repurchases ever. I've finished eye shadows before but never bought them again, I've always gone for something new. These three shades; Verve, Sin and Virgin are the three shades that I've finished out of my Naked palettes which just shows how much I like them.

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02 December 2013

Mini Reviews 009 : Embryolisse // Queen // Origins // Yu-Be

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Embroylisse Lait-Crème Concentrè - This is the cream I reach for when the eczema on my face has flared up and I want something simple that doesn't aggravate it. It doesn't really do anything fancy, it just moisturises your skin which is all I want and need when my eczema is bad. It's not one I'd use on an everyday basis as it's quite thick but is perfect for when I have visible flaky dry skin. On a side note I love the metal packaging and the fact I'll be able to use a tube squeezer to get every last bit of product out. £18.50 for 75ml.

Queen Eye Restore Cream* - I haven't really been a fan of eye creams up until recently after trying a couple that I really like. My eyes are very sensitive and I find a lot of eye creams are too thick which seems to cause milia, those tiny little white bumps. This one by Queen feels very light on the skin but is still hydrating enough. It's sort of a gel-cream and sinks into the skin really well. I also haven't noticed any milia pop up whilst using this for the past couple of months. The packaging is perfect, it has a pump which means I can control how much product I use and I don't waste any. Another bonus of the packaging is that you can see how much you've used and when it will run out. There's nothing worse than thinking you have a lot of product left and then it suddenly runs out because you can't actually see what's left. I've been using this in and off since June and I've used about half of it so far so it's going to last a long time. £24.50 for 25ml.

Origins Make A Difference Plus + Rejuvenating Treatment - This treatment is targeted at dry and dehydrated skin which my skin annoyingly ticks both boxes. Although it doesn't mention anything about helping breakouts, it really does and I always notice a difference in how my skin looks when I use this. The more hydrated my skin is, the less spots I get and it just sort of evens out the look of my skin. The texture is completely different to other moisturisers I have, it's sort of a gel-cream hybrid which means it sinks into the skin wonderfully. On the days that I use this, which is a couple of times a week depending on how my skin is, I use it in place of my moisturiser after I've applied serum. If I use a moisturising serum, like Caudalie Vinosource SOS,  then I find this treatment enough hydration for my dry skin. This is a staple in my skin care routine that I know I'll be repurchasing for a long time. I also really want to try more products from the range especially the serum. £34 for 50ml.

Yu-Be Moisturising Skin Cream - I decided to buy the full size of this after getting a sample size in a Birchbox and finishing the sample in a matter of days. For some reason I really like the camphor scent which I find sort of calming. If you don't like the scent though it goes away completely after a minute or two. Yu-Be is an incredibly moisturising cream which I like to use on my elbows, hands and feet which are the driest parts of my body. It's definitely more of a cream unlike Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour cream. I bought mine from Birchbox using some points but you can buy it from Boots, Cult Beauty etc. Prices vary in size and where you buy it from - £10-£20.

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01 December 2013

Skin Care Diary: November 2013

Through out each month I'll be keeping a skin care diary and jotting down what I use on an every day basis. At the end of the month I'll tally up what has been used the most and share the products with you. 
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This month the eczema on my face has been at an all time high so I've really taken my skin care routine down to basics, even less products than last month. I've also been using very gentle products like the Weleda Baby Calendula Cream and the RMK balm cleanser. Kiehl's MRC has been a star product in giving my skin the hydration that it needs. 

La Roche-Posay Cicaplast Baume B5 // Bioderma Micellar Solution // Weleda Calendula Face Cream // Vichy Micellar Solution // Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate // Liz Earle Eye Bright // balance Me Stellar Face Balm // Aesop Chamomile Concentrate Anti-Blemish Masque // RMK Rose Cleansing Balm. 

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