Beauty Products of 2017

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HAPPY.NEW.YEAR! 

Ready or not, 2017 is here and 2016 has become something of yesteryear. Without wanting to be a cliché, a new year usually inspired us to become the better version of ourselves, which is not necessarily a bad thing. What often comes with that is a list of new year’s resolutions or goals (whichever you use, it’s semantics).

As a person who values tradition, I did draft a new year’s resolution post, but I don’t think that it will see the light of days. When I re-read my 2016 goals I didn’t think the 2017 version would be any significantly different to the year that had just went by. There was a theme going on there! So on that note, I thought I’d write  about something slightly different for my first post of 2017.

As one who is skin care obsessed, I am always on a look out for something better, that works harder or that shows results quicker. Which is why I think that I am a beauty counter sales associates godsend customer as I don’t even need to be persuaded to part ways with my money in search for the next cult beauty items. I often come out from beauty halls with a bag of beauty products that I either didn’t know exist or wanted or needed which suddenly became my can’t-live-without as I leave the department stores.

For the last entry of 2016, I shared my favourite beauty products of 2016, so I thought it is only appropriate that for the first post of 2017 I pen down a list of products that I have yet to find my absolute favourite and that I can’t live without.

The three that are at the top of my head at the moment are:

  1. Day time serum – Previously I was using the Estee Lauder Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator which has now been discontinued. I have tried a few sample products which include the Clinique Smart Custom Serum and the Bobbi Brown Intensive Skin Supplement Serum. At present I am still undecided which one works best for me although my hunch says the Bobbi Brown serum might win. Well, I at least want to give it a good try.
  2. Sun protection – Previously I was using the Clinique Super City Block SPF 40. I am currently using Kiehl’s Ultra Light Daily Moisturiser SPF 50 and it is almost run out. They are both OK but I am definitely open to try something new.
  3. Shampoo and Conditioner – I was using Fekkai Brilliant Glossing Shampoo and Conditioner previously. However, these are not easily accessible in the UK and even if they are available, their stock availability is very inconsistent, which makes it very difficult for me to make it a must have item in my life – because they may not be available when I need them, get it? I have dabbled with a few brands such as Loreal, Tresemme, Garnier etc, but the one brand that I am seriously considering right now is the coconut range from OGX. I am still undecided between the coconut water or the coconut milk range or if I should consider other hair care brands.

So if you have any recommendations on the three products mentioned here, please do share your views. I would be very much appreciate it and who knows your favourite can’t live without products could end up being mine too!

And if you don’t mind me, I am off to search for my next can’t live without products!

Have a great 2017 everyone! x

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My Favourite Beauty Products of 2016

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So as 2016 is closing its curtain, and I am making a list of beauty products that I need to repurchase from the Harrods Beauty Hall, I thought this is the perfect opportunity to do a round-up of beauty products that I have been loving during 2016. Some are new discoveries while others are previously loved products which my love for them has been rekindled.

Skincare

Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil – This product has remain as a firm favourite for the last two years and I suspect that it is not going anywhere (just yet). It’s absolutely brilliant at removing even the toughest make-up and does not leave the skin feeling tight, which is something I commonly experience when using a foaming cleanser.

Clinique Clarifying Lotion 1.0 – I genuinely believe that it was the Clinique 3-Steps skin care that sparked my love for skincare and our relationship goes a long way. We have had some bumpy roads along the way, and mainly because I was having flings with other skin care brands (naughty me!!) but since the introduction of this alcohol-free version into their skincare line, I have re-incorporated it back into my daily skin care routine. It removes any traces of dirt left on the skin, as well as de-flakes and protect the skin moisture post cleansing, getting it ready for the next skin care steps.

Clinique Moisture Surge – I don’t suffer from many skin issues and my skin tends to behave most of the time. But if there is one thing that I often complain about it would be dehydration and lack of glow or lustre. I have been using the Moisture Surge to combat the lack of hydration issue on my skin. The texture of the cream / gel is very light and a little bit goes a long way. I have noticed that my skin has become more plump, smooth and supple since I use this religeously as part of my daily routine.

Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Serum  – A cult and award-winning product on the market and I have gone through many bottles of this. It took a while to get me onboard but I became fully converted when my age turned to the ‘other side’ of 35. I am not taking any aging-risks, and the fact that people often under guess my age, something about this product must be working well.

Clinique Turnaround Overnight Cream –  Absolutely genius and it makes all the difference when I wake up in the morning. Without it, my skin looks dull, lack lustre and radiance, and I feel that any products applied onto the skin are not fully absorbed. I’ve decided that this is a must in my skin care routine.

Clinique All About Eyes – Another product that makes all the difference. Great at removing (note – not just minimising but removing!) puffiness in the morning and minimising the dark circles underneath the eyes.

Make Up 

dscf0501Foundation – I am half way using the Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation but I am currently finding that it’s too matte for my skin. As such I have been having a fling and may well have fallen in love with the Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation. The consistency is so creamy and it glides so smoothly when applied onto the skin. Absolutely love it. I also recently received a sample size version of the Clinique Superbalanced Silk foundation. After a few trials, I am seriously considering getting the full size version once my current foundation runs out.

Eyeshadow Palettes – Given that I qualify (and probably may need) to start attending ‘palette-addict-annonymous’, it’s hard for me to narrow down my favourite. However, the two that stood the test of time this year are  – Bobbi Brown in Brown Stone and the Party to Go Palette. No doubt that the Party to Go palette is a recent discovery as it was part of the 2016 Holiday Wine & Chocolate collection, but it’s been my favourite since I unboxed it and the one I reach out for during this holiday season.

Blush – I have not found a new favourite this year, so the Clinique Aglow remains the one that I reach out for every.single.day. Btw, how long does it take for a blush to hit pan? I have been using this blush for years and it’s definitely still going strong!

Lipsticks – My most favourite discovery is definitely the Clinique Pop Matte Lip Colour in the shade Cute Pop. It’s in my handbag all the time and practically has become my everyday nude lip colour. And if I needed a pop of colour on my lips, the Bobbi Brown Burnt Red and the Laura Mercier Scarlett (no longer on the market) have been my top two favourites.

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 So there you have it. My favourite beauty products for 2016. If you have any favourite products that you think I should give it a try, please do share. I would love to hear about them. x

Holiday Gift – Laura Mercier Le Petite Souffle Body Cream Collection

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I can’t believe that this time next week it will actually be Christmas Day! Where has the month or even the year gone?

As it is the last weekend before Christmas, I am pretty sure everywhere you go will be super busy and crowded as people are trying to nail their gifts shopping.

Speaking of gifts, I thought today I’d show you one of the holiday gift sets that I have bought for myself  – I know, very naughty of me.

The gift set in question is the Laura Mercier Le Petite Soufflés Soufflé Body Crème Collection.

fullsizeoutput_838This is a classic gift set from Laura Mercier and they have been having this as part of their holiday gift set collection annually.

The set comes with six mini tubs of the souffles body cream of different scent. The scents included in the set are Almond Coconut Milk; Amber Vanille; Creme de Pistache; Fresh Fig; Creme Brulee; and Tarte de Citron.

If you are familiar with the Laura Mercier scents, you know how dreamy and divine the scents are. My ultimate favourite is the Creme de Pistache, which unfortunately, has been discontinued so you can only imagine how excited I was to see it was included as part of this collection.

In addition to the amazing scents, these body cream are super light (true to its name ‘souffle’), very moisturising and hydrating but without the greasy feel to it. It absorbs very quickly upon application and leaving your skin super soft.

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I am rather obsessed with these miniature collection for a number of reasons.

Firstly, I have a section of six scents to choose from and I can swap the scents around depending on my mood / occasion / simply because I want to. I often find when I use the same scent all year round, I tend to get used to the scent and ended up not noticing the scent on me.

fullsizeoutput_839Secondly, the mini tub is small enough which means they are perfect for travelling! And finally, they are just so cute and they don’t take up so much bathroom space! 🙂

What about you? Have you cheekily bought something (or a lot of things) for yourself while shopping for other people? Let me know! x

My Favourite Home Scent

It is often believed that the sense of smell is linked to our memories. I genuinely think this must be true. I am sure I am not the only one who have experienced a deja vu of either  transported back to a particular time or place a result of smelling something.

So today, I thought I’d share three of my favourites home scents – two of which have been re-purchased, including one which was shipped directly from the US. If that’s not love, I don’t know what is?

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Blanc from The White Company

The scent Blanc from The White Company is my all time favourite scent and the one that I have at home all year round. I often buy this in the diffuser form as I want my living area to be filled with this scent constantly . If candles or room spray is more of your thing, the range comes in those as well.

This scent has a very modern, clean and fresh feel to it which mainly comes from the combination of two main notes which are white geranium and juniper berry.

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Sloe Gin from The White Company

I recently ran out Blanc and while I was at The White Company I decided to give one of its Christmas scents a try. There are a variety to choose from their Christmas Collection – Winter, Mistletoe, Mulled Wine, Fir and Berry and Sloe Gin – but it was the Sloe Gin that made it into my shopping basket. These are all limited edition and exclusively available for the holiday season only which was the reason why I thought I should give it a try now, otherwise I will have to wait for another year!

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The Sloe Gin has a subtle fresh yet warm cozy scent from the mixture of succulent sloe berries, spicy juniper and juicy plum with a touch of coriander. I’ve had it for about a week or so now and I am loving it. Despite that it has a lot of spicy and berry notes in it, none of the scents are overpowering which means my home still smell fresh and clean but with a hint of warm and coziness thrown in.

Spiced Pumpkin from PF Candle Co

This is my perfect scent and ultimate love for the autumn and winter season. Stumbled upon while I was in New York City last year, this candle brings the holiday scent to a whole new level. The smell of ripe pumpkin, creamy butter and brown sugar topped with toasted cinnamon and nutmeg is such a classic Thanksgiving scent, which in my opinion marks the start of the holiday season and the countdown to Christmas! Unfortunately this brand is not widely available in the UK. I’ve seen some in Urban Outfitters but they don’t carry the full range. Thankfully PF Candle Co do ship directly to the UK (beware of shipping and custom duty costs – you’ve been warned!).

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So there you have it. My top three favourite home scents. I may switch things up in the new year, who knows…we shall see! I hope you are all having a relaxing Sunday and have a great week ahead. x

Bonus Post – Black Friday, Cyber Weekend Codes, Promotion and Sales

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If you have been following my blog you would notice that I hardly ever do a post on a weekday. But today is no normal day and while it’s not really celebrated in the UK, it’s a big holiday event in our neighbouring country across the Atlantic pond.

I am talking about Thanksgiving Day, which is a national holiday in the Canada and the US (although each country celebrates it on different days – 2nd Monday of October in Canada and the fourth Thursday of November in the US).

As a person who obtained her undergraduate degree from the US, Thanksgiving Day or Weekend will always have a special place in my heart. I mean, what’s not to love?

Firstly, it’s a four-day weekend. Secondly, the food spread – from turkey with the stuffing, trimmings and gravy, pumpkin pies to eggnog. And last but not least, Black Friday sales. My flatmates and I used to sacrifice our sleep for our annual ritual shopping trip to the outlet malls on Black Friday. Obviously, we were poor students and didn’t have a lot of money to spare, but we never fail to grab A LOT OF STUFF because the discounts were insanely good!!

Fast forward to the present, aren’t the digital age great and aren’t we lucky as we no longer have to leave our home (or sofa even) to participate in Black Friday sales extravaganza (or is it madness)? We surely have A LOT to be thankful for (pun intended) the world that is known as online shopping and discount codes.

With that in mind, I thought I’d do a round up of Black Friday, Cyber Weekend Codes, Promotion and Sales. I will try to keep the list updated as my inbox get bombarded with online codes.

Fashion

ASOS – 20% off everything; code GOGOGO

Zara – 20% off on selected items; from 24 Nov @ 23:00 to 25 Nov end of day

Mango – 20% off everything; all weekend; code BLACK

GAP – 40% off online; code FRIDAYGAP until 27 Nov

Anthropologie – 20% off until 28 Nov; code GIFT

Zakti – 20% off exclusive to members only; code ZBF20

LK Bennette – 20% everything; code BLACK20

Pure Collection – up to 20% off until 28 Nov; code UKEE1402

HOBBS – 20% off everything until 28 Nov

Monica Vinader – 30% selected items until 8am 29 Nov

Beauty and Skincare

The Body Shop – Online exclusive bundle; code BUNDLE while stocks last

NARS – 20% off until Monday 28 Nov; code GIVE&TAKE

Beauty Bay – up to 30% off selected items

Cult Beauty – £5 off when spend £50, code BLACK5; £15 off when spend £100, code BLACK15, £30 off when spend £150, code BLACK30; until 25 Nov

Perricone MD – up to 50% off selected items

Kiehl’s – 20% off with purchase of two products until 26 Nov; code BLACK20

Fabled – 20% off until 28 Nov; code VOU385908465

Home

Le Creuset – Up to 50% on selected items, while stocks last

India Jane – 20% off everything; code BF20

ecookshop – extra 15% off until Monday 28 Nov; code EXTRA15

Designer Guild – 20% off; code GIFT20

The White Company – 20% off until 28 Nov; code B901T

Department Stores

Harvey Nichols – exclusive to Rewards members and limited on 24 Nov only; 25% off Fashion and 10% off beauty online and instore

Liberty – exclusive to Liberty Loyalty members until 28 Nov, up to 20% off

Selfridges – 20% off and 10% off Beauty and Fragrance until Sunday 27 Nov; code SELFCCE

Happy shopping guys! And please do share what you managed to grab as I would love to see them all!