Feature Favourites: April

As I sit down to write my Favourites’ post, it looks & feels more like November outside than the end of April/beginning of May! It’s 5° and raining. A lot.

Anyways, it has been a good month for new discoveries and purchases so let’s get cracking!

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Palette
Whilst technically not brand new, it was new to me this month. I bought this from a lovely lady on Depop who had only lightly use the blushes. It includes Luminous Flush, Incandescent Electra and Mood Exposure. To be honest I have barely used anything other than this palette for blushes this month, the colours are so versatile and pigmented. It’s so beautiful.
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Stila ‘In the Light’ Palette
I’m really loving Stila Eyeshadows at the moment, I have developed a little collection and this is my newest find. It was reduced to half price on the Stila website so I got it for £12.50 which is a total steal! It includes beautiful shades including Kitten (which admittedly I also have in another palette but is a stunning shade) and my other favourite Sunset, which is a beautiful copper/bronze shade. You cannot go wrong with this palette, it comes with a ‘look book’ if you’re unsure what look to go for, and also a waterproof smudge eye pencil!

Radley Chelsea Bag
I accidentally bought another Radley bag. Oops.
How could I resist when I saw it in TK Maxx (and I’ve never seen Radley in TK’s before) and it was half the original price. It’s slightly smaller than my other Radley, and obviously a different colour. I love it just as much!
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Marks and Spencer Per Una Rain Coat
Now clearly you can’t head into a British summer without a rain coat – that would just be silly. I am also going to be visiting places it tends to rain – Scotland, Wales and the Lake District. Therefore, this is a great investment for me. I love the contrast between the navy and the yellow, and the fact it pulls in at the waist. It’s practical and stylish, bravo M&S!
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MAC Lipstick in Persistence
I may be a little late to the party, but my most recent addition to my MAC Lipstick collection is this beauty. It’s the perfect mauve with brown undertones which is a classic statement look perfect for any occasion.
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Notice Board & Pins
I started a photo wall this month and as part of that I purchased this lovely notice board and push pins (from Etsy). I love pastel shades and think they grey board looks great with these polaroids.
I got these pictures printed by LaLaLab, for which I have a code for £5 off… Just download the app and enter the code at checkout: PGBUYKJ9.
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So this is what I’ve been loving throughout the month of April. If you have any suggestions for May, please let me know!

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Current Routine: Skincare

For the first instalment of my Current Routines series, I am starting at the beginning, naturally.

My current skincare routine – I like to change it up and try new products, especially when I can grab new and exciting brands at a bargain price (TK Maxx, of course).

I have included a mixture of higher end, and drugstore products for your perusal:

Cleanser
Simple Kind to Skin Purifying Cleansing Lotion
What I like about this product is that you don’t have to wash it off with water afterwards. I know it sounds lazy, but my room is a flight of stairs away from the bathroom, so it makes me happy that my cleanser just melts away with a cotton pad. It’s excellent for sensitive skin, and removes make up that you cannot even see. I feel dirty without it. Literally, of course.

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Toner
Simple Kind to Skin Pore Minimising Toning Cleanser
I promise I’m not being sponsored, I am just loving the Simple range at the moment! I aren’t entirely sure why I use a toner, but ‘cleanse and tone’ is how it goes, right? I find myself using this more in a morning to freshen up my face before I apply my make up. I then go on to apply primer, a base etc.

Blemish Control
If you are one of those annoying people who don’t get spots/zits (whatever you call them) then just slide on right past this section! For me, and quite of a lot of other ladies out there, we are prone to spots. My worst days are around my period, I often get a random volcano pop up from nowhere… So how do I combat them? I have a few tricks up my sleeve…
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Kiehls Blemish Control Daily Skin-Clearing Treatment
I picked this up in a TK Maxx haul at the sum of £12.99 which whilst still pricy, is considerably less than it’s RRP. I use this in my T-zone on a night and have found that less spots have occurred since I started, so I shall continue that way!

Yes to…Clear Skin: Acne Clearing Facial Toner
We’ve all been there, that one spot that won’t heal and disappear, and won’t be covered by thickest of concealers. This product is great for drying up those pesky zits. Using a cotton pad I press the product into the spot and hold it there for a few minutes. The next day I find it has dried up a lot, and is on its way to healing. I wouldn’t use this all over my face as it would dry it out, but it’s fab for specific spots.

Hand Cream
Tui & Kahili Sooth Tube by Ashley & Co: Wild Ginger Lily
I suffer with recurring eczema on my left hand so I have to be careful what I use. I tend to go for hand creams with natural ingredients, in the hope that it might just help. Until now, I had never tried a product (that wasn’t prescribed by a doctor) that has had such a profound effect on my eczema. This cream is non greasy, is made with Shea butter and other good natural products. It has improved my eczema so much, I can’t even put it words. I went back and bought another tube!
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Moisturiser
Tru Holy Grail Facial Moisture
If you don’t like scented moisturisers then you won’t like this, but if you can handle a ‘complex scent’ (which is how they describe it…) Then you may like this as much as I do.
I won’t lie, it smells of raw potatoes. Strange, right?
You only need two pumps of this to cover your face (and at the RRP that is all you’re going to want to use!)
I promise though, if you can look past the price and the scent, then you’ll love this moisturiser. It has become a favourite in my routine.

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So, those are my current favourites. Have you tried any of them, or do you have a recommendation for me?

Gerard Cosmetics: Review & Swatches

I’m still pretty new to wearing lipstick on a regular basis. 6 months ago you would have found me wearing the wrong shade for my skin tone and only on special occasions. Oh, how I’ve changed!

My lipstick collection grows each month and I’m buying shades to compliment my skin tone and to be a bit more daring. I never knew how much lipstick could enhance and finish off a look!

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I’ve purchased some lovely Gerard Cosmetics Long Wear Hydra Matte Liquid Lipsticks which I wanted to review and swatch for you lovely readers.

Firstly, the formula is thick but that means you really only need to go over your lips the once. They take about 2 minutes to dry on my lips, but obviously it will vary person to person. I find them an absolute dream to wear, I don’t have to worry about them flaking or cracking. They just stay put! Over time they fade really well, so you don’t look liked a crazed person after you have eaten or suchlike, they are very complimentary!

I also love the frosted glass packaging, it feel so much more expensive than it was! They are slightly smaller than other liquid lipsticks I have bought, but I can forgive them because they’re so wonderful in other ways!

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I started off with Iced Mocha which is a rich brown colour and is probably my darkest lipstick to date. It was aptly named because it reminded the lovely people at Gerard Cosmetics of the beverage. I love it for a bold statement look and a little confidence boost!

After my first taste, I couldn’t leave it at just one of their liquid lipsticks so then I bought Invasion and Ecstasy.

Ecstasy has beautiful mauve undertones and is the lightest of my three shades. I absolutely love this colour! Invasion is similar to Ecstasy but with lovely brown undertones making it the perfect nude shade. I really cannot pick a favourite out of the 3 I’ve bought!

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I think the colour choices are really in a league of their own, they’re so versatile and there are so many, so you’ll definitely find one for you! Who knows which one I’ll buy next!

Edinburgh: Mini Guide

Edinburgh. It is my favourite city, other than my home town. It is has a castle! Need I say more?!

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My sister and I returned from our most recent trip the other week, and this time we were very cultural (or at least attempted to be…). We visited some places we had never previously been to – it is a city that just keeps giving. I love it.

I’ve rounded up a list of ‘must see’ places, and a few tips to help you plan your journey.

Where to stay…
To be central for shopping, museums and the castle I would advise staying somewhere around Princes’ Street, which is one of the roads next to Waverley Train Station. Each time I go I forget how long Princes’ Street really is, so try to get somewhere nearer the station if you can. I’ve listed my top 3 budget hotels which I’ve stayed at previously.

Premier Inn Central
This hotel is located towards the other end of Princes’ Street. It is more or less directly in line with the Castle, which makes for a good view if you get a room at the front. It is also next door to Starbucks which is on the first floor, and has comfy seat, ornate original windows which look over to the castle. It’s a lovely place to grab a bite if you don’t fancy the hotel breakfast. The rooms, as with most Premier Inns, are clean and well equipped. We had no problems here and the staff where really helpful.

Travelodge Edinburgh Central Waterloo Place
Situated very close to the station, it is ideal for being on the doorstep for the shops and local amenities however it is quite noisy on an evening for this reason. We often heard ambulances and the traffic noise was very loud so if you’re a light sleeper, I wouldnt recommend it. The rooms were average, ours was a little tired and in need of a lick of paint, but we visited there about 3 years ago, so it may have improved now.

Holiday Inn Express Edinburgh City Centre
A little walk from the station you’ll find this hotel, near the cinema and John Lewis so you’ve got shopping and entertainment literally on your doorstep. This is a lovely hotel and the rooms were very clean and spacious. It seems to be quite pricy compared with the others so we have only stayed here the once but I have nothing bad to say.

Shop till you drop…
There are all of your favourite high street shops on the main run of Princes’ Street. There are couple of H&M’s because one is just not enough? You’ll also find Jenner’s, which is basically House of Fraser with a few higher end brands as well.
Behind Princes’ Street is George Street. Here you will find higher end shops, but there is also Cath Kidston and Anthropolgie down here which are definitely worth a visit. At the end of this road is Harvey Nichols, for your beauty shopping list!

If you’re looking for something a little bit different…
Eden (Cockburn Street)

Beautiful gifts and small home accessories and greetings cards. It is a great shop and we always try to visit when we go to Edinburgh.

Miss Katie Cupcake
A little bit further up the street from Eden is this amazing shop. We first visited years ago when it was in its infancy, but now the shop is crammed full of beautiful handmade jewellery and gifts. Everywhere you look there is a gem. Definitely worth a visit.

Victoria Road (Not far from the National Museum)
This whole street is very cool. You will find boutiques, old book shops, cafés and lots more. If you have the energy after visiting the National Museum, then I’d recommend it.

If you want to be cultural…
The Real Mary Kings Close
If you’re interested in the history of Edinburgh and you aren’t scared of the dark then this may be the attraction for you. There is a whole city underground, houses, streets etc. The tour guide will show you around and tell you about what life was like for people living back then. It’s located off the Royal Mile down a little alley, but you’ll see a sign on the main stretch and sometimes even an actor dressed up advertising it!

Calton Hill
I’ll admit we went up the hill for the view rather than the historical side of it. You can get a full 360° view of the city from up there, so if you don’t mind the really steep walk to get to it – definitely visit and take your camera!

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The National Museum of Scotland
It’s not just for children – honest! We had a brill time – it’s free entry for a start. There are so many exhibitions so there is something for everyone. The building is stunning and there are places to eat (which are really pricy) so you can easily spend a whole day here.

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Edinburgh Dungeon
I’ve heard really good things about this place if you don’t mind a scare. I’ve never been myself because the thought of something jumping out at me scares me to death. It’s not far from the train station and could easily be tied in with a visit to the Royal Mile and The Real Mary Kings Close in the same day.

When you’re hungry…
Hard Rock Cafe
Always worth a visit since they’re only in main cities – great food and great atmosphere.

TGI Fridays
Just around the corner from the Premier Inn (Central) you’ve probably been before but it’s a new favourite of mine so I wanted to mention it ❤

I hope this little guide helps if you’re planning a trip up to Scotland!

All opinions are my own and I have not been sponsored for this post

Foundation Obsession: The Confession

It’s out in the open. I am no longer in denial.

I love buying foundation.

I can’t seem to stop. I hear about a good one, see a blog post about a new release or watch YouTube, and suddenly, before I know it, it’s in my basket and on its way to me.

I hate to leave the house without it. It’s my little bodyguard, helping me feel confident and face the day with my head held high.

I’m sure I aren’t the only one out there who keeps buying foundation even though you could give one to each of your friends and still have loads left for yourself!

Let me know what you think to my collection and if there are any amazing foundations I am missing out on. There is a pretty good chance I’ll buy what you suggest…

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Foundation
8.5/10

You may have already read my post about this foundation, but if not you can find it here.
I have used it lots more since writing that post and still continue to love it. The range of shades available is perfect for those who struggle to get matched up. It can last all day without melting off or looking cakey as the day goes on. I just can’t say enough how much I love this foundation. There is only one other foundation (so far) that has beaten this one to 1st place, but you’ll have to keep reading to find out which one…

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The Body Shop Moisture Foundation
6.5/10

I think I was a little too quick to make my purchase (shush, we have all been there). Under the lights of The Body Shop I was wowed and encouraged to make my purchase. Plus points: as advertised it is very hydrating and a nice light formula. I found their shade range really good for a high street brand whose foundation retails at £13 – The Body Shop have really make the effort to include everyone. It has SPF15 which is great if you want just a little something on, but sun cover as well. The downside for me is that it’s so hydrating that by lunch time I looked a bit greasy. Now, I have combo skin so it may be the perfect match for you if you have dry skin, but it isn’t one I reach for a lot. I would like to try their other foundation though which might be more suitable to my skin type, because they are just so affordable!

Estée Lauder Double Wear Light
8/10

You already know I am a lover of this foundation. It is my favourite medium coverage base. I have the shade 0.5 which is the lightest shade in the range. I find myself wearing this foundation on reasonably good skin days, since it is a lighter coverage than some of my other foundations. If I’m having a major spot day then I opt for something more bullet proof but I love this foundation for a natural skin-like coverage and cannot recommend it enough.

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Loreal Infallible Matte Foundation
7/10

I bought this originally so long ago, before all the hype about matte finishes, and before I really had an interest in make up. The shade is a little dark for me which is why it got thrown aside, drugstore shades are never light enough for me! I recently dug it out and have enjoyed using it more than previously. It lasts all day more or less, and has a really nice medium/full coverage. It isn’t fully matte and due to the shades available in the UK, I have marked this down but if you haven’t a darker skin tone than mine you will love it as a drugstore alternative.

Tarte Amazonian Clay Foundation
9/10
I didn’t think I would be able to do better than CT or Estée Lauder but I have found my holy grail foundation. It’s a really thick consistency when it first comes out the tube but it blends out into a natural medium/full coverage. You get 50ml for £30, so does work out better value than my other faves – Sorry CT & Estée! In the UK you can buy it through QVC who have a range of shades to choose from.

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NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tint
7.5/10

I don’t need to say much about this beauty because it featured in my recent March Favourites, but I shall say I still do use it regularly. It isn’t my everyday foundation but more of a weekend daily time foundation – when I don’t plan on exerting too much energy! It is excellent value for money and NARS offer such a good variety of shades.

Thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed it!