Murad Essential-C Cleanser

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

I've been using this Murad cleanser for a few weeks now and I'm loving it so much that I just had to give it a mention on here! The cleanser is part of their Environmental Shield range which aims to prevent and reverse damage like hyperpigmentation, sun damage and even age spots (which I don't think I need to worry about just yet!) This specific product works by removing impurities and restoring moisture to the skin, with the help of Vitamins A, C and E.
So, why do I love it so much? Well firstly it has a lovely, mild citrus orangey scent to it which instantly makes it pleasant to use and is especially great in the mornings when you really want to freshen up. I absolutely love the light texture of this, as it begins to foam ever so slightly when you work it into your skin - just enough to make you feel like it's actually 'working' - but it's also so gentle that it never irritates or dries my face out at all. The cleanser contains a few orange little 'beads' as I've tried to show you in the picture above - I'm not sure if they're meant to be exfoliating or not but I definitely feel like my skin has had a real good clean after I've finished with this! Once I've used it my entire face feels completely fresh and it looks almost glow-y, sort of radiant I suppose (which doesn't happen very often) so I really love the effect that it is having on my complexion so far. 
The only downside I can think of is definitely a bit nit-picky but I just wish that the design of this tube was a little better because the screw cap can be kind of annoying when you're trying to quickly get the lid back on before too much product spills out whilst also trying to keep the bit you've just squirted out from falling through your fingers. If you're doing it in the shower then that's just a whole nother story. (I don't even think nother is a word. But that's besides the point.) I'm pretty sure that this version of the cleanser is a smaller starter kit sized one anyway because I got it in a beauty box that I bought, so perhaps if you purchase the full sized thing then it has a better lid mechanism! But like I say, it's really not that bad it's just me being a pedantic beauty blogger who feels like they should try and think of any downside possible to mention just to give a rounded opinion.

Hopefully you can see that I absolutely love this cleanser and I would really recommend it to anyone who wants to add something new to their skincare regime. I've actually been really surprised by how well it has suited my combination skin and I can't really think of any particular skin type that it wouldn't do well with, even sensitive skin might be okay with this as it feels really gentle and mild when I use it. Just a warning - it is pretty pricey but I do think that it's worth it!

Have you ever tried anything from Murad before? Let me know if you have any recommendations as I definitely would love to try more from the brand!

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Lush Sea Spray Hair Mist

Saturday, 17 January 2015

After kindly receiving this sea spray at Christmas it has become a firm favourite of mine and I absolutely love using it to freshen up my hair! First of all, the product is both cruelty free and vegan friendly so those who don't support animal testing can enjoy a totally clear conscience when purchasing this. I absolutely love Lush as a brand in terms of their ethics and I know that I can always count on them to produce great quality, reasonably priced products that rightly support the welfare of animals.

So, what does this hair mist actually do? A number of things really! One thing I really love about this product is the gorgeous, fresh scent (thanks to the grapefruit oil!) that completely refreshes hairs and gives it a new lease of life. I now pair this with my trusty dry shampoo on those 'I really need to wash my hair but I'm just too lazy' days and it totally transforms my shabby locks into something much more manageable and generally less gross looking.

I also love using this straight after I've washed and blow dried my hair to stop it from looking too 'done' if you know what I mean. Sometimes all those brush strokes and so much heat can actually leave my hair looking a little flat and lifeless, so this works a treat when I want a bit of extra texture and volume. The moisturising carrageenan extract in this sea spray means that your locks are protected from drying out too much while using the mist and it also works as a thickening agent too, so it's perfect for people like me who get a bit frustrated with having fine hair!

Overall I would say that it's definitely worth giving this a try if you don't already have a sea spray in your collection as it's one of those products that you can't really go wrong with. The smell is absolutely gorgeous so I would be tempted to buy it for that alone! The bottle is really nice and sturdy so it's perfect for those of you who travel around quite a lot and at £9.95 it won't break the bank either.

Are you a fan of sea sprays? If you have any others that you would recommend let me know in the comments!

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The Body Shop Strawberry Body Sorbet

Monday, 12 January 2015

I was so happy when one of my friends gave me this strawberry body sorbet as a present recently because it's something I've been eyeing up for a while but haven't been able to justify treating myself to, as I don't exactly *need* it. (I try and steer clear of splashing all my student loan out on treats that I don't really need otherwise I'll end up eating beans on toast for breakfast, lunch and dinner!) I've always been really curious about the texture of this product because a 'sorbet' isn't something I've come across before, not in terms of skincare anyway, and I liked the idea of it being a little bit lighter than regular body butter.

So, what do I make of it? I completely love it! Just as I imagined from the name of the product, it sinks into the skin really quickly and there is no sticky, greasy residue like you're sometimes left with after using creamier products. I've got into the habit of using it after my morning shower because it makes getting dressed following moisturising significantly less sticky (I cannot stand wrestling with jeans while they refuse to slide up my recently moisturised legs). The scent will probably be familiar to most body shop fans as it's exactly the same as the rest of their strawberry range - it always reminds me of calpol for some strange reason - but if you don't have any experience with it then I can assure you that it does smell lovely.

It does such a good job of keeping my sensitive skin hydrated and I've been using it all through the cold weeks we've had recently to prevent any dry and sore areas on my skin from cropping up. I'm really prone to eczema on my arms and thighs but luckily I've had no problems with that whilst using this!

Have you tried any of the products in the body sorbet range? I might have to pick up the satsuma scented one after this runs out!

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3 Goals for the New Year

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

I'm not really big on New Year's 'resolutions' and never have been, but I do see the New Year as a great time to think about any changes I might want to make to my life and set myself a few little goals to try and aim for. I prefer to be realistic and keep things pretty small, but it's still nice to get the sense of a fresh start!

1) Stay organised

There's nothing I hate more than feeling totally stressed and overwhelmed, so to make sure that I never get to that point I'm going to make an extra effort to stay organised and keep everything in my life in order. This is especially important for me at the minute as I have an exam coming up as well as a big piece of work and I can already feel the tension rising!

2) Exercise regularly

Instead of lazily moaning about my physique for months and then desperately booking onto as many classes as possible just before summer (come on, we've all done it) I'm determined to even everything out and keep exercising little but often. I'm hoping to attend a few hour long classes a week and maybe go for some light jogs if the weather allows, so nothing too extreme but I should see some benefits if I combine it with healthy eating! I was treated to some lovely workout gear this Christmas so I can't wait to actually put it on and get myself out there.

3) Plan some proper 'me time'

I'm really bad at actually relaxing whenever I try and take some me time because I'm constantly distracted by things - mainly my laptop and my phone! This year I'm really going to try and put aside time to properly relax, which means phone away, candles lit and a good book or dvd to keep me company. Sounds perfect!

What are your goals for this year? Are any similar to mine?

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Winter Walk OOTD

Saturday, 3 January 2015

 Headband* - SheLikes // Jumper - Topshop (similar) // Jeans - Topshop // Wellies - Hunter
The other day I went on a really lovely (though unbelievably chilly) walk and managed to capture a few snaps just as the sun was setting. The views near me are so pretty and I love soaking up all the scenery when I can actually be bothered to make the effort and get out there! I especially like being surrounded by nature as I'm a massive bird geek at heart and love nothing more than spotting a good old nuthatch or even a treecreeper if I'm lucky (yes, I'm sad).
I have completely fallen in love with my new Topshop jumper - despite the fact I see it on someone nearly every time I leave the house - and it is the most perfect, comfy, cosy, snuggly piece of clothing for this time of the year. I never thought I'd be a fan of roll necks but I have to say I think I'm being converted!
Have you invested in any roll neck jumpers lately? What are your must haves for staying warm out in winter?

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Top 5 Beauty Products of 2014

Wednesday, 31 December 2014

As 2014 comes to an end I thought I'd round up my five favourite beauty items that I've blogged about this year and feature them all in one post. As always, the products that work well for me might not do anything for you, but if you're on the lookout for some new treats to spend your Christmas money on then you might just want to keep reading!

1) Bathing Beauty Soothe Body Oil Infusion
I picked this up at a vegan fair in London and fell in love with it almost straight away. The calming oils did a wonderful job of soothing my eczema/dry skin and the lavender scent made it especially perfect for bedtime use. It feels so luxurious to use and sinks into the skin really quickly without any horrible residue so I would really recommend it to anyone who hates that horrible after-moisturiser sticky feeling. I need to order myself some more of this!

2) The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing Butter
No product can melt all my makeup away at the end of a long hard day like this baby can. It's so good at getting rid of everything at once, even eye makeup, and it feels unbelievably nice as it glides over the skin. It's gentle, non-irritating and has a nice but subtle scent. Will definitely be repurchasing this when my current makeup remover runs out!

3) Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Eye Pencil in LSD
I wasn't really big on eye products until I started using this. The days of only using mascara soon became a thing of the past and I began experimenting with eyeliners and shadows waaaaay more than I had before. It's safe to say that this gorgeous, shimmery, buttery-textured eyeliner has totally rekindled my love for eye products and I am always reaching for this as one of my go to beauty items now. It's just perfect in every way - really pretty colour, long lasting, and thankfully easy to apply!

4) Superberry Mud Mask
Pink packaging, exfoliating raspberry seeds and the promise of super smooth skin - what's not to love? I've been using this fairly frequently over the past few months and I love the refreshing boost it gives to my skin. The thick, cooling, clay texture of the mask is perfect for keeping oil at bay and I love the fact that it comes in a bottle because I always find that I end up wasting some product when I buy the facemask sachets.

5) Coconut Oil
A deep conditioning hair mask, an overnight moisturiser, even a nail strengthener - I absolutely would not be without my coconut oil now! My favourite way to use it is to smother a load all over my hair before bed and leave it to work its magic overnight. My dry locks have definitely seen an improvement since using this and even my hairdresser told me to keep doing what I'm doing!
So here are my favourite products from the year. Is there anything I've mentioned that you've been using too? I'd love to know what your stand out products have been!
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A Very Merry (Vegan) Christmas!

Monday, 29 December 2014

Sorry I haven't posted in a while! My only excuse is that I have been enjoying all the recent festivities and taking some time to chill with my family and eat lots of food (what else would one be doing at this time of year?) This Christmas was my first 'vegan' Christmas which means no turkey - shock horror - but a heck of a lot of nut roasts, and just in case anyone's interested I decided to take some pics to share with you on here!

See, Christmas without turkey really isn't that bad! Especially when you've got these lovely homemade roasties to tuck into - they're definitely my favourite. Aside from eating, we also had a lovely time opening presents and watching our new films and listening to all the new music we'd got. Here are a few of the lovely gifts I received!

I got my sister a hilarious grumpy cat book last year and this Christmas she repaid the favour by delighting me with 'cat selfies'. Having three cats of our own, we are a tad cat mad so anything cat related always goes down a treat. I was also really happy to get some new sports stuff as I've been meaning to invest in some for a while and nike designs are always so pretty, now I just need to find the motivation to get off my butt and exercise! And of course, I just had to get my hands on the new Prince cd! After we had all opened our presents, it was time for the cats...

I think they're pretty impressed with their new home!
All in all we had a really relaxing time and it was nice to not be rushed off out feet or stressed about anything silly. We've spent the past few days watching our new films (last night we saw Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and it was really good) and having a few drinks with family friends, trying to draw the festivities out as long as possible! I hope you all had a fantastic time and are looking forward to seeing in the new year, let me know what you got up to in the comments!
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