Beauty & Hayfever

You know those days when you have time to enjoy putting your make up on and everything seems to be going so well. Even your winged liner is perfect. Then you step outside, the wind blows, your eyes itch and water, and you look like you’ve been sobbing your heart out for half an hour. Yeah, that.

Hayfever is something that affects so many people these days. It is caused by an allergic reaction to pollen. Do you know which type you have?

There are around 30 types of pollen that could cause your hay fever. The pollen that causes hay fever can come from a number of sources, including:

Grass – in the UK, about 9 out of 10 (90%) of people with hay fever are allergic to Timothy and Rye grass pollen

Trees – about 1 in 4 (25%) of people with hay fever in the UK are allergic to pollen from trees, including oak, ash, cedar and birch (people with an allergy to birch often also experience an allergic reaction to apples, peaches, plums and cherries because these types of fruit contain a similar protein to birch pollen)

Weeds – such as dock, mugwort and nettles; being allergic to weeds is less common and tends to occur during the autumn 

Different trees and plants produce their pollen at different times of the year. Depending on which type of pollen you’re allergic to, you may experience hay fever symptoms at different times.

Tree Pollen – late March to mid-May
Grass Pollen – mid-May to July
Weed Pollen – end of June to September

So, how can us beauty lovers fight the effects of hayfever?

1. Try not to itch your eyes.
It may seem a simple thing to say but we all touch our faces over 100 times a day introducing new bacteria. If your eyes are already sore, they’re not going to appreciate being prodded and poked.

2. Take an antihistamine every day
There are different types on tablets so speak to your doctor to make sure you’re on the most effective dose but make sure you take on every day to build up your immune system.

3. Waterproof your eyes
Try using a waterproof mascara and avoid excessive eyeshadow or liner. The less that can go wrong, the better! Also, set your under eye with powder so of your eyes do run, hopefully there won’t be an avalanche of foundation going with it!

4. Cooling Eye Masks
Before bed try using a cooling eye mask to reduce puffy eyes caused from your hayfever. Origins do a great one called ‘No Puffery Cooling Mask for Puffy Eyes’.

5. Eat Local Honey
Try to source some local honey and have a teaspoon a day. Not only does it taste amazing, it’ll also help you in the hayfever department.

6. Remember, you’re not the only one
There are more than 10million people in England who suffer with hayfever so don’t worry if you smudge your make up or need to sniff. Chances are you’ll get sympathy rather than a funny look!

I hope this has helped my fellow hayfever sufferers. We’ll get through it together!

Depop: The Lowdown

Depop. It will be the death of my bank balance.

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If you’re familiar with sites like eBay, you’re already halfway there.

In a nutshell Depop is a buying app for anything and everything from pottery to beauty products. It’s also a selling app for those unwanted dust collectors you haven’t got round to taking to the charity shop.

Buying
•Always check sellers feedback before jumping into the deep end – especially if you are buying branded items – Depop and other sites are notorious for fake goods.
•You can make your purchase through the app using you bank card, or through a link to PayPal. Using this option ensures that you are protected in case there are any issues with the product, delivery, or with the seller. Buying through the app does incur a charge for the seller, so sometimes they will ask you to pay through f&f. What does this mean? It’s using the ‘friends and family’ option directly through PayPal, sending the money using their email address. This avoids the charges from their end but means you won’t be covered if anything goes wrong.
•If you’re looking for something specific, use the search function or browse the categories. It is a great place for finding a gem, and I’ve bought so many things already!

Here are a few bargains I have picked up…

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Purchased from Depop for £40. RRP £85. Hardly worn

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Purchased from Depop, hardly used. £25

Selling
•You can sell pretty much anything at a price that you choose. Depop will take a cut of the profit so remember this when pricing up your products.
•It is so simple to do, just snap a few photographs, write a short description using keywords, set your price and postage and you are done!
•Do ensure that you are charging enough to cover your postage costs as remember small parcels are now £2.85 each within the UK!
•Try to take honest and clear photographs – if there is a fault – mention it! You might still get some interest, and its much better being upfront about it than dealing with the hassle and bad feedback afterwards!
•Once you’ve sold something make sure to post it as soon as you can to make sure your buyer gives you good feedback.
•Something to note is that Depop hold any money made for 14 days before you can ‘withdraw’ it from the app straight into your bank account – presumably this is incase there are any problems with the transaction!

There are rules for using Depop such as not selling used make up products, which is frequently ignored and violated by users. It depends what you are after, but sometimes you can pick up an amazing bargain!

If you’d like to follow me, and see what I’m selling, my username is @alishamaccy

Use discretion and common sense and you’ll be fine! Happy shopping.

Current Routine: Everyday Make Up

The second instalment of my Current Routines posts is my everyday make up routine.

So, to begin with I prime my face using Max Factor Facefinity Primer. It feels like a moisturiser more than a primer, with a soft velvety texture. I have found it to prolong my make up and reduce shine.

For my everyday foundation I choose either Charlotte Tilbury’s Magic Foundation in shade 2 or Tarte Amazonian Clay foundation in the shade Fair Sand, depending on what I am doing and what sort of coverage I want. I always use my pink beauty blender for a lovely smooth finish.

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I am plagued with dark circles and spots occasionally, just as much as the next girl so for me, concealer is a need. I have been using the Urban Decay Naked Concealer in the shade Light Warm. It may be pricy but I think it’s the best out there. If you need a cheaper alternative, go for the Collection concealer – this is what I used to use, and at drugstore price, you cannot beat it.

I set my undereye in place with my RCMA no colour powder, and sometimes also my t-zone where I usually go shiny over the course of a day.

Next I do my brows. I am currently using a combination of Soap and Glory brow pencil & brush and the brow tint and shaping pencil……I love them both, don’t make me choose! I have also used the NYX brow whizz (dupe for ABH) which I also love – but since it’s only available online and it had ran out, I went for the S&G alternative and I’m so glad I did!
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Depending on the day, I bronzer using my matte Cargo Cosmetic’s Bronzer and blend it out. I use a subtle blush for everyday, usually favouring the Max Factor Blush in Alluring Rose. It is a good dupe for the Hourglass Ambient Lighting blushes, but isn’t quite as pigmented, making it great for everyday.

Onto eyes, and I like to go for a subtle eye for everyday in light brown shades such as Bliss (Stila In the Light pallette) for the crease and lightening up the lid with Stila’s Kitten shade, which is a beautiful subtle shimmer. I’m kinda in love with the ‘In the Light’ palette for an everyday look.

Depending on how I’m feeling (admittedly it’s more about how much time I have…) I like to line my lashline using a thin wet brush and black eye shadow… It’s a great subtle alternative to black eyeliner, and you can almost never get it wrong!
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Mascara is where I am pretty lazy…I am fortunate to have long lashes already so a quick swipe of Maybelline’s Lash Sensational is all I do, and that me done!

I complete the look with a lipstick, usually something like my CT Very Victoria or MAC Spirit.

The finished look!
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Thanks for reading!

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!

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?