My Favourite Highlight Brushes

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For a true makeup lover, a set of new makeup brushes are considered as valuable and as treasured as a new born baby. You may think that’s a terrible analogy, but if you’ve seen the way I’ve swooned and pampered a new makeup brush, you would understand.

Top quality brushes are one of the most important aspects of makeup application. Using poorly designed brushes can make your look appear streaky, amateur and unpolished. Quality brushes allow for a smoother application and avoids major adsorption of a makeup product.

I never understood the importance of a quality makeup brush until I started using high end makeup .There’s no worse feeling than spending a large sum of money on a beautiful foundation or blush, only for your makeup brush to soak it all up. That being said, quality should not be confused with price. Nowadays, more and more companies have brought out amazingly beautiful brushes for an equally as attractive price. The key is to finding a makeup brush that will work well with the task at hand and the natural contours of your face, despite the price. Assess the shape, size and even handle of the brush to determine whether or not it’s right for you.

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I’m sure you’re all aware that highlighters are the way to my heart. Although I love all aspects of makeup, a new highlighter sends my emotions into overdrive. Now, I won’t admit to how much money I’ve spent on highlighters over the years, because, to put it simply, it’s embarrassing. I will say, however, that there’s never a moment when my face doesn’t look like it could light up the Tower Of London.

I’ve experimented a lot when it comes to highlight brushes. However, I’ve found three brushes on the market that have become permanent fixtures on my dressing table. Finding the right highlight brush can be tricky. Some are either too big, too small, not capable of a perfect blend or simply, don’t pick up enough product. The right highlight brush can turn you from a ‘greasy’ mess to an ethereal goddess with a simple swipe.

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Anastasia Beverly Hills Pro Face Detail Brush (A23) | £24.50

This brush can be used for a multitude of tasks. It’s perfect for highlighting, diffusing powder products and setting beneath the eye. The natural bristles are tapered yet flattened on either side making it perfect for concentrating the product in the area required. I use the very tip of the brush for highlighting atop my cheekbones and use the flattened sides for underneath my eyes.

The bristles are extremely soft; which is useful for those with sensitive skin as it doesn’t irritate. I also love the super long handle; which helps me control my hand motion perfectly when applying a product. My only gripe with the handle is that I wish it were more weighted, like a Sigma brush for example. However, with that said, the brush diffuses powder products beautifully, allowing for you to build up the intensity depending on your mood.

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Zoeva Luxe Fan Brush (129) | £9.50

Fan brushes, to me, are massively underrated. For years, I never knew the importance of a fan brush and always thought that its only use was to look pretty on a dressing table. However, fan brushes are one of the most practical makeup tools around. A fan brush can be used for a multitude of tasks and eliminates the possibility of harsh lines. Using a fan brush to apply your highlighter creates a naturally diffused, soft-focused look, perfect for the daytime or understated looks.

The Zoeva Luxe Fan Brush is a high performance brush made of both natural and synthetic bristles. Zoeva brushes are by far my most favoured brush brand on the market. Not only are the brushes super affordable, but the quality of the brush and the packaging it comes in are incomparable.

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Real Techniques Setting Brush | £6.99

If you’re looking for quality brushes with an affordable price tag, the you can’t go wrong with Real Techniques. The powerful sisters behind this brand know what they’re doing when creating brushes. Each brush in their line are not only affordable, but they’re incredibly long lasting.

My favourite brush out of their range is the Setting Brush. So much so that I have 5 of these little beauties in my collection. Besides the fact that it’s pink (adore), the small, densely packed brush head means that I can concentrate the product in a particular area without worrying about it going all over the place. The synthetic bristles hold a lot of product; which is why I love using this brush on occasions when I really want to go full out glam. It’s also perfect for applying highlighter to small areas, such as the brow bone.

What are your favourite highlighter brushes? Comment below with your suggestions.

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p.s. I finally got my hands on Becca and Jacklyn Hill’s Champagne Pop and I’m loving it!

Give Yourself Some Lash | False Lash Technique

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There’s very little in this world that gets me angry. Except perhaps the odd negative comment on Instagram, or the blatant disrespect of not getting enough ‘likes’ on a selfie that’s, quite honestly, taken more time and effort than spent on my university dissertation. What’s wrong with this world?! Ok fine, I don’t have the most placid of personalities, but that stuff hurts!

If there’s one thing that gets my temperature rising, it’s the unwillingness from a set of false lashes. For all my ladies out there who love falsies as much as I do, you can understand that my sentiments are perfectly rational. After all, it’s utterly frustrating when your ‘good’ eye looks bomb and your ‘lazy’ eye looks like it’s been worked on by a 4 year old. Why do lashes play us like that? Being a leftie, I always struggle with my right-eye lash application. Perhaps it’s the angle or the shape of my right eye, but my lash always looks like it’s hanging on for dear life (not very well).

They say that your eyes are the windows to your soul, but lashes are the fabulous curtains. Why step out with all that blending and killer winged liner without adding some fluttery falsies? False lashes add dimension to your completed look and can turn you from a basic bitch to a makeup slayer.

I don’t rock lashes on a daily basis, but when I’m looking to get a little glam, a false lash set can turn my persona around. False lashes are sexy, feminine and frame your face like no other. Having said that, I know plenty of women who avoid falsies altogether for the simple fact that they find them a pain to apply. My friends and family have quickly established that the best way to apply falsies, is to get me to do it for them. I’ve become known as the ‘Lash Queen’ (I’ll get that legalised one day). However, I want to share with you, all of my tricks and techniques for lash application so that you can slay your false lash application. Practice makes perfect in this scenario, but when you’ve applied them as many times as I have, you’ll be a pro in no time.

Many of the products listed below can be adapted to items of your choice. The technique remains the same, but having quality tools at hand makes the process a breeze.

Tools Required

A pair of your favourite lashes
Tweezers or false lash applicators (Eyelure do a great pair)
Scissors to trim the lashes
Eyelash glue
Mascara
Pencil or gel eyeliner

Method

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1. Coat your lashes with mascara. This may seem like a completely pointless step considering you’re going to cover them anyway, but it makes the world of difference. Coating your upper lashes with your favourite mascara enables your lashes to blend naturally with the false lash hairs. Some choose to apply mascara after applying the lashes, therefore coating the natural and false lash, but I’m not an advocate of that method. Coating your falsies with mascara not only shortens the longevity of your lashes, but it creates lumps which are hard to remove without ruining the lash. I, for one, love to wear my falsies over and over again so adding mascara to them is not an option for me. You can choose to coat your bottom lashes at this time to complete the eye look, or like myself, you can choose to coat them after your false lashes are applied. Bottom lash mascara is essential to balance out the look of the eye. The mascara of choice when I’m looking to get fluttery lashes is the Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara; which gives me that perfect ‘doe-eyed’ look.

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2. Remove lashes from the pack. My absolute favourite lashes at the moment are the Eyelure Vegas Nay lashes in Grand Glamour. They add the right amount of drama and wispy-ness to the eye without making your look too ‘drag’. The voluminous nature of these lashes give your eyes a smokey effect, without having to smoke out your eye shadow. Go for lashes described as wispy to give your eyes a fluttery, ‘butter wouldn’t melt’ look.

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3. Measure the lashes against your eyelid. After completing your eye makeup and mascara, you need to measure the lashes against your eyes to ensure they’re a perfect fit. If you find that falsies ‘poke’ and ‘dig’ into your inner eye, you’ve either placed them too close to your tear duct or they’re too big for your eye shape. If you have small eyes, I would suggest using a pair of cosmetic scissors to trim the lashes. I use a pair of stainless steel nail scissors to easily cut into the lash, without damaging them. Remember to trim the lashes from the front rather than the outer edge so that you don’t ruin the shape and style of the lash.

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4. Apply lash glue to the band of the lash. Now, lash glues are controversial. I cannot tell you the amount of times that I’ve been faced with a situation of having to put on someones falsies with the horrible pots of glue that come within a false lash pack. Not being a complete lash snob, but these little glues are crap. They may stick your lashes on, but they’re messy, a pain to get off and simply don’t do the job properly. Unless you want your lashes to grace the presence of your cheeks later in the day, invest in a decent lash glue! I can say with confidence that I’ve used them all. However, the best lash glue that I have come across in terms of ease of use and staying power is the Ardell DUO Brush On Striplash Adhesive in white/clear. The thin brush applicator makes it easy to apply the correct amount of product onto the lash band without having to get my fingers or tweezers sticky. The drying time is incredibly quick and it keeps my lashes on all night. I find that getting into the corners of the lash, that may need additional glue once your lashes are applied is easy with this applicator. The product applies as a florescent blue colour, but dries completely clear; which is perfect for the days that I don’t wear any liner with my lashes. If you’re not so bothered about sticky fingers, then the Huda Beauty Lash Glue in black is pretty remarkable.

5. Allow the glue to dry before applying to your eyes. For the quickest and strongest application, you want to ensure that the glue is slightly tacky before applying them to your lash line. Hold the lashes between your fingers or tweezers whilst the glue is on the lash band. I usually do the obligatory ‘lash dance’ at this time – prancing around whilst flapping my hands, creating my very own drying system. Allow the glue to dry for 20-30 seconds before application. This allows for the lash to instantly adhere to your eyelids rather than slipping and sliding all over the place.

6. Apply the lashes using tweezers or a false lash applicator. Unless you’re a pro, applying lashes with a pair of tweezers will be fool-proof way of getting them in place. You can certainly use your fingers, but if you’re as cack-handed as I am, you’ll find the tweezers a lot easier to work with. Any tweezers will do in this case, but my chosen pair are the Tweezerman Slant Tweezers. Place the lash between the tweezers and apply as close as possible to the lash line. I tend to place the centre of the lash down first to get the position just right, then work on the corners. I usually press the tweezers against the lashes for a few seconds to ensure that the lashes are firmly stuck against the lash line.

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7. Line your eyes. Applying eye liner is completely down to personal preference. When I’m going for a slightly ‘natural’, understated eye shadow look, I will forgo the liner. However, when I’m doing a full on, dramatic, intense eye, winged liner is just what I need to tie off the look nicely. If I do choose eyeliner then I tend to apply this before my lashes, doing a few touch ups after the lashes are applied to conceal any gaps. If I choose to leave out the liner, I use a small amount of liner between the start of the lash band and my inner tear duct to create a ‘faux’ liner effect without having to wing it out. For precision and intense colour, I use MAC’s Penultimate Eye Liner.

What are some of your favourite lashes? Comment below with brands that I need to try!

Glitter Is Everything | Urban Decay Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliners

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I have a somewhat sick obsession with glitter. Whether it’s makeup, shoes, handbags or even home decor – my fetish for all things sparkly is out of control.

Over the past few weeks, I have had the pleasure of attending a family wedding. As you can imagine, Indian weddings call for opulent, heavily embellished and colourful outfits. I’ve never been an advocate for soft, natural makeup with Indian wear. Not to say that it’s not allowed, but in my opinion, when the clothes are so extravagant the makeup needs to follow suit. I decided, quite early on, that glitter was the only route I needed to take when it came to my makeup. Not that I needed an excuse, if it were up to me I would rock a glittery eye every day of the week!

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I recently picked up the Urban Decay Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliners in the shades, Distortion, Midnight Cowboy and Glam Rock. The complete collection of eyeliners contain 7 shades, including Amp (turquoise, green-y blue), Spandex (midnight blue), ACDC (deep purple) and Junkshow (bright pink). Although the other colours are beautiful, I’m not sure if they are as universally wearable as the golds and silvers. Plus, if you are looking for the perfect glitter to go with your Indian outfit, you can’t go wrong with a classic gold or silver. I may, however, have to invest in the dark blue colour as that would look stunning as a Kim Kardashian-esque blue smokey eye with a twist.

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Distortion

A beautiful iridescent glitter; which reflects an array of colours. You can use this as a ‘neutral’ glitter for any makeup look without compromising on the colour. Imagine a diamond reflecting light from a surface giving off a beautiful mix of green, gold, fuchsia and blue.

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Glamrock

If silver is what you’re going for then Glamrock is the shade for you. This has pure silver particles guaranteed to add some serious sparkle to your peepers.

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Midnight Cowboy

Rather than a harsh, abrasive hue, this is more of a beige-gold colour. This is a perfect accompaniment to any Indian outfit. The warm undertones look amazing against tanned skin.

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The thing that I like most about these glitters is the applicator. I’ve tried many glitters and pigments in the past, including the ever-famous MAC Glitter Pots. What I find irritating about most of the glitters available on the market, is the mess factor. Girls who love experimenting with glitters and pigments will relate. Once you open the lid on one of these bad boys, you find yourself amidst an explosion of product. Despite trying to open them as carefully as possible, you can’t escape the mess that they create all over your vanity and even your hands! Now, I love glitter as much as the next person, but when I’m rushing out of the door, the last thing I need is a cloud of highly pigmented glitter all over my bedroom.

The brush applicator on these eyeliners is an ingenious solution to all of those problems that potted glitters and pigments give you. I must say though, the applicator is to be expected as these are eyeliners after all, but when you’re looking to paint these beauties all over your eyelid, the brush is a welcomed tool. There’s virtually no mess, no fuss and, in actual fact, they make your application more precise than a makeup brush could ever achieve. The thin bristles make it easy to get the product tight against your lash line as an eyeliner or as a pop of colour in your inner tear duct.

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The pigmentation on these eyeliners is intense, yet build-able. One swipe is enough to give a transparent flash of glitter, but adding two or three more coats gives you an incredible opaque finish; which is easily noticeable. The glitter particles are not too big; which makes this super comfortable to wear, especially for contact lens wearers like myself. One thing that I find with regular glitters if that the removal process can be quite daunting. Many have left me with red and irritated eyes as they have been so difficult to remove. The Heavy Metal eyeliners easily melt away with a swipe of a facial wipe or eye makeup remover. Despite this, the staying power is great and they dry almost immediately; which means that if you do go for an all-over-the-lid look, they won’t transfer to your brow bone (first world problems I know).

Have you tried these glitter eyeliners before? Comment below with your experience and what colours you would recommend.

Gerard Cosmetics Lipstick Collection | Review and Swatches

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If there’s one thing in this world that gets me foaming at the mouth, it’s a fabulous collection of lipsticks – ok maybe pizza…pizza has the same effect…oh and shoes…and maybe macaroons…OK fine there’s a lot in this world that gets me salivating!

I love seeing other people’s collection of lipsticks. A girl’s lipstick collection shows a lot about her personality. Girls who want to be noticed go for reds, girls who are playful go for deep purples, girls who are young and flirty go for pinks and girls who don’t like fuss go for nudes. To be honest, I’m a little of everything. I love my pinks, but I also love an understated nude lip or a sultry burgundy pout.

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Gerard Cosmetics is the brain child of Jennifer Gerard, CEO and creator of the brand. After her success with Whitening Lightening, a professional at-home teeth whitening kit, Jen decided to turn her attention to the makeup world. Gerard Cosmetics have created iconic and easily recognisable products such as Brow Bar To Go and their amazing BB Plus Illumination Creme. Although an American brand, the phenomenon around their products have reach international heights with companies such as Beauty Bay offering UK consumers a slice of what Gerard Cosmetics have to offer.

I wanted the opportunity to try out their lipsticks after seeing Instagram images of their ever famous 1995 shade. As I was ordering these from the States, I made an informed, and almost indulgent decision, to try out a ‘few’ other shades. When I say a ‘few’ I really mean 8…I bought 8 of them. I will warn you though that if you do decide to try out Gerard Cosmetics, do not order direct from their website. Although they offer great bundle deals and international shipping rates, they also offer the worst customer service I have ever experienced. I won’t go into detail of the problems that I have faced, but trust me when I advise, order your lipsticks from Beauty Bay (links below).

I love the long wearing, full coverage that these lipsticks have to offer. The longevity of the lipsticks are definitely the selling point here. The lighter shades take a couple of coats to get the desired look, but the darker colours are so pigmented that one swipe is all you need. They’re extremely comfortable on the lips despite their staying power; which make them a great day-to-day lipstick.

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The gold, bullet-style packaging reminds me of MAC lipsticks. It’s safe to say that these chrome lipsticks will never get lost in your handbag! However I would say that the packaging is so lightweight, it almost feels cheap. Not that they’re incredibly expensive (£9.50 each), but I expected more considering the finish on them. The only other downfall is that they pick up fingerprints and any other marks very easily. Not a major turn off, but it can get a little annoying if you have OCD like I do.

In terms of shade selection, Gerard Cosmetics have got it right. There’s a shade for everyone, including a vast selection of nude/pink shades; which will allow anyone to achieve the perfect Kylie Jenner lip. Apart from a few, majority of the shades are very universal and would suit anyone of any skin tone. If there’s one thing that I need to give Gerard Cosmetics props for, it’s the range of colours.

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Colours below are ordered from left to right as in image.

1995 – Inspired by 90s grunge glam. This is a neutral toned, matte finish lipstick. Not just a brown, but rather the red undertones give it a beautiful multi-tonal effect. Think the girls from Beverley Hills 90210 (the original).

Cherry Cordial – This shade is for you if you want to amp up the sex appeal. This is a vampy, deep berry-toned lipstick that’s add the perfect amount of mystery to any look. Although its a satin finish, the staying power is incredible and it leaves your lips with a subtle stain long after the night is done.

Tequila Sunrise – Imagine a sun filled holiday in a lipstick. This is a peach toned, coral lipstick that looks AMAZING against a tan. I’ve definitely found my summer shade here. I only wish that it wasn’t a matte finish, but rather a shimmer as I’m not a fan of heavy, matte finish lipsticks in the summer.

Berry smoothie – This is a semi-matte shade; similar to Rodeo Drive. This, however, is more of a pink hue. Rather than a Barbie pink, this is more of a purple/mauve toned colour.

Kiss & tell – A flamingo pink, satin finish with flecks of glitter. You can play this up with a strong winged eyeliner or mute it down with a natural lip liner.

Vintage rose – A beautiful understated pink with a matte finish. This is a perfect ‘everyday’ shade and a it’s neutral tones makes it suitable for any makeup look.

Underground – Not my most typical of choices when it comes to lipstick, but you really have to see it in persons to appreciate how beautiful it is. This is a nude lipstick with a difference. A grey lipstick with subtle pink undertones. If you’re a of grunge glam, you will love this.

Rodeo drive – If I was to associate this lipstick to anyone it would be Kylie Jenner. This is one of Gerard Cosmetics’ most famous shades and it’s not hard to see why. This is the most perfect matte finished mauve nude that I have ever seen. Pair with a slightly darker lip liner, and you’ll have Jenner lips in no time.

Have you tried any Gerard Cosmetics lipsticks? Comment below with your favourite shade.

Bedside Beauty

As the day draws to a close and my bed lures me in, there are a few steps that I take before laying my head down to ensure that I don’t wake up looking like a miserable cow – scratch that – as much of a miserable cow.

It’s safe to say that I take my pre-slumber beauty tasks very seriously. First there’s the skincare – we all know how that goes down. Then there’s the bedtime manicure, the random eyebrow hair pluck and, of course, the obligatory face analysis (you know you do that too).

With a beauty regime as extensive as mine, many would believe that it takes me an hour to get ready for bed. Quite the contrary. My beauty regime fits around my lifestyle. So when my husband and I wind down to some bedtime tv, I go to work with my lotions and potions. There’s no better feeling than slipping into bed feeling relaxed, primed and ready to awake as a glowing goddess (indulge me).

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If you’ve ever wondered what goes on in the mind of a woman, simply check out her bedside table. The items she choose to have at her finger tips pre and post sleep can reveal more secrets than her diary.

My bedside table usually contains a myriad of charging cables, mobile phones/ipads, prescription glasses and a bottle of water. These are the items that I simply cannot get out of bed without. When it came to adding my beauty products to that mess, I simply had to add some organisation to my life. I display my beauty products on a beautifully decorated Venetian mirror tray. It adds no purpose to my beauty regime, but it certainly makes me feel more special! If you’re looking for a way to organise your collection of bedside essentials, try adding a vanity tray or decorative bowl to add a little glamour to a boring bedside table.

Feet

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Soap & Glory | Heel Genius £5.50

My feet are the first thing that I go for when I’m getting ready for bed. I have extremely dry skin and no matter how many pedicures I get through, my feet are always dry and uncomfortable if I don’t treat them to a thick slather of foot cream.

The cream contains extracts of grape, orange, lemon, sugar cane and macadamia seed oil; all of which contribute to its sweet smell. Menthol is also included; which gives the cream a light blue colour and a cooling affect once applied to the feet. The consistency is more gel-like than cream, but it absorbs instantly into the feet. For the price point, you can’t go wrong. This is certainly one of the most moisturising foot creams that I have tried and the cooling affect is welcomed after a tiresome day on my feet.

I rub in this gel/cream using massage techniques before slipping my feet into a comfy pair of socks. The socks help your feet retain moisture from the cream; however, I can’t sleep in socks so I keep them on for a minimum of 20 minutes whilst I watch TV.

Lips

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The Body Shop | Lipscuff £8.00

This has become somewhat of an obsession for me. Whilst I watch TV, I mindlessly rub this lip exfoliator all over my lips. Unlike conventional lip scrubs; which are contained in tiny tubs, this little invention takes the hard work out of exfoliating. In lipstick-like packaging, this is the easiest scrub I have ever used. There’s virtually no mess or water required to clean up the product. The exfoliating beads (crushed fig stones) gently melt into your lips. The addition of coconut and marula oil hydrates and soothes your lips after the exfoliating beads have done their job. There’s a slight peppermint taste to the exfoliator; which explains the colour, but it’s hardly noticeable.

Winter is the perfect time to add a lip exfoliator into your beauty routine as harsh weather conditions cause lips to flake and dry out. I’ve noticed that continuous use of this lip scrub leaves my lips feeling buttery soft and it also helps with any dark pigmentation on the lips (that’s for my fellow Indian girls out there).

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Maybelline | Baby Lips Dr Rescue range £3.49

Although the Lipscuff does a wonderful job in moisturing the lips, I always feel like I’m missing a piece of the puzzle when I don’t use a lip balm.

Lip balms, to me, are what Nandos sauce means to chicken – it’s a bare necessity! I never go anywhere without a lip balm in tow. I constantly top up my lips with a slick of balm throughout the day, particularly during the winter months.

I have grown a somewhat unhealthy obsession with the Maybelline Baby Lips collection. I’ve made it my mission to collect every flavour and colour available; which has proved to be a difficult task considering that there are a crap load of them. However, the Dr Rescue range has been my favourite for using before bedtime. Maybelline claims that their Dr Rescue range provides up to 12 hours of hydration, combats sore and chapped lips and just one week of continuous use is enough to completely renew your lips. I’m not sure of the ‘lip renewal’ claim, but my lips feel super moisturised after using this handy stick. I don’t have to worry about residue on my fingers when applying the balm; which is always a pet peeve of mine. The formula is incredibly creamy and the staying power is great. My lips still feel moisturised when I wake up in the morning.

Hands and Nails

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Lush | Love and Light Hand Cream £7.95-£13.95

I’m forever applying hand lotion. My hands take a beating throughout the day. I’m somewhat of a clean freak, so I’m constantly washing my hands. However, all that washing actually takes out the skin’s natural oils therefore leaving them dry and rough. I read somewhere that your hands are the first to show signs of ageing, so treating them to some TLC will ensure you look as young as you feel. Much like the skin on your face, your hands renew themselves while you sleep so applying a moisturising cream will do wonders for your paws.

I love how light this cream is against the skin. Although I love rich and creamy formulas, I don’t want anything too heavy or greasy on my hands. I’ve had many iphones fall on my face due to slippery hands! The extracts of neroli oil and organic cocoa butter add a wonderful level of moisture to your hands and the Brazilian orange blossom adds a beautiful fragrance. The tiniest bit goes a very long way so this cream will last you forever.

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Lush | Lemony Flutter Cuticle Butter £6.95

Ok people, confession time – I bite my cuticles. Disgusting I know, but I can’t seem to stop! Luckily I’m not a nail biter otherwise I would have nothing left on my fingers! I’ve made it my mission for 2016 to improve the condition of my cuticles and, of course, stop myself from nibbling away at them!

This cuticle butter is actually a multi-use product. Think Vaseline in a lemon curd scent. You can use this balm on any rough patches of your body as well as your cuticles. The extremely thick balm turns to an oil once applied to your body. Word of warning though, if you don’t like lemon scents, you won’t like this. The smell is over bearing and smells like you’ve literally rubbed an entire lemon on your hands.

What I do love about this product is that it’s very long lasting. I barely touch the product with my finger and that slight touch is enough to cover all 5 nail beds on the other hand.

What do you keep on your bedside table? Comment below and let me know what your essentials are.

Daytime Skincare Routine | Winter 2016

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Just when you thought that I couldn’t fit anything else on my face, here comes the second installment of beauty routines – my daytime skincare! I think it’s safe to say that I love to ‘baby’ my skin. Skincare, to me, is an essential part of my daily grooming. Whilst it may seem excessive to some, this routine genuinely works for me and ensures that my skin stays in the best condition possible.

Genetic structure also plays a big part in your skin. My mother, who will be turning 60 this year, barely has a crease far less a wrinkle on her face. For as long as I can remember she’s never had a pimple or any other skin issues. Along with trouble free skin, my mother also passed down to me her views on skincare. Growing up I would always see jars of expensive creams on her vanity. I assumed she just liked the way they looked (partly true), but my mother always believed in a good skincare routine; which is why she looks years younger than her age.

As mentioned in my last blog post (you can view it here), my evening and daytime skincare routines are very different. My bedtime skincare routine is slightly more intense as I reserve most of my products for the evening. My daytime skincare is very minimal in comparison. I tend to rush in the mornings, so I built a routine which is quick and simple. After cleansing multiple times in the evening, my skin is generally clean in the mornings and therefore doesn’t require a vigorous regime.

Your skin reacts differently depending on the time of day. The most important rule of thumb is to remember that the night time is all about repairing and rebuilding whilst the daytime is all about protecting. Your skin deals with a lot of crap throughout the day, so creating a barrier between your epidermis and the elements of life will ensure that your skin doesn’t get clogged up.

Cleanse

Philosophy | Purity Made Simple One-Step Facial Cleanser £18.00-£29.50

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If you read my last blog post, then this product would seem very familiar to you. I use this cleanser for the morning as well as the evening, mostly because I didn’t want to fork out for another cleanser, but also for its super gentle formula against the skin. I’m somewhat of a zombie in the mornings. Whilst stumbling on my feet and mindlessly turning on the tv rather than the coffee machine, having to factor in complicated and time consuming skincare products is the least of my priorities. This cleanser is perfect for fuss free cleansing. I squirt a pea sized amount in the palm of my hand and lather with a bit of water. I easily glide this cleanser over my eyes as it does not irritate them. I only cleanse my face once in the mornings as my skin is generally clean from the night before.

Tone

Liz Earle | Instant Boost Skin Tonic Spritzer £14.75

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We’ve previously spoken about the benefits of toners, however, I can understand why most people find it a mundane step in their skincare routine. Having to faff about with cotton wool pads and spending precious sleep time on aimlessly swiping a product over your skin seems a little, well, rubbish. Not that toners take up a lot of time, but when you’re still half asleep with your clothes on back to front, spending a second on something you don’t consider important can be a chore.

This non-drying, floral toner is perfect for busy mornings. The spray bottle design leaves a fine layer of moisture to the skin. What can only be described as a drink for your skin, this toner will add additional moisture along with a refreshing feeling. Extracts of aloe vera, calendula and cucumber soothes redness and ‘wakes up’ your skin, ready for the day ahead. A couple of sprays across the face gives me enough product to effortlessly tone my face without fuss. I also use a travel sized version of this spray throughout the day for when my skin feels dehydrated and tired.

Moisturise

NUXE | Crème Fraiche de Beauté 24hr Soothing and Moisturizing Cream £25.00

skincare day 4

Now that we’ve cleansed and toned, it’s time to put on our body armour aka day cream. The day cream that you choose determines the type of skin that you have. Oily skin types would go for gels and light lotions, mature skin would go for anti-ageing creams with a high spf factor and dry/dehydrated skins would go for thick and creamy formulas. My skin type is the latter and when looking for a day cream, if it doesn’t use the words hydrate or nourish in the product description then it’s not for me.

The NUXE Crème Fraiche range is specifically formulated for skin that requires hydration. The formula is thick and creamy, almost like whipped butter. It contains 8 plant milks and Salicornia; which basically boosts moisturisation for up to 24 hours. The richness of the cream comes from shea butter, but rather than a thick, gloopy, oily cream that you would expect with shea butter, the cream is smooth and instantly absorbs into the skin. I’ve tried a lot of hydrating day creams over the years and the NUXE Crème Fraiche range is by far the most moiturising of them all. My skin feels comfortable, soft and plump all day.

Eye Cream

Clarins | Eye Contour Gel £31.00

skincare day 5

Drinking up to 3 litres of water a day is also an essential part of my day. Drinking water not only does wonders for your health, but it literally feeds your skin. Drinking an adequate amount of water ensures that your skin is smooth, plump and bright. It also does wonders for your eyes and the skin around them. Being of Indian descent, I suffer with dark circles around my eyes. Despite getting enough sleep each night (when my husband decides not to snore), my dark circles will not vanish. Combined with dry skin and irritable eyes due to wearing contact lenses, my eyes sometimes look and feel like I’ve had a round with Mike Tyson.

My morning routine calls for an eye cream; which can refresh and revitalise my tired skin. The Clarins Eye Contour Gel is the perfect pick-me-up for someone like me. Not only does the super-active organic plant extracts soothe and cool my skin, but the combination of caffeine and Ginkgo Biloba reduces puffiness around my eyes. They also claim that the extracts of Wild Rose helps to reduce dark circles. In terms of the dark circles around my eyes, I’ve noticed no difference at all. However, after trialing hundreds of eye creams over the years, I’ve learnt that there is no wonder product on the market to completely remove dark, under-eye circles. Rather than crying in a corner, I’ve learned to embrace them…oh and how to cover them up with a corrective concealer! I do, however, feel that this eye gel is the perfect addition to my morning skincare routine simply for its cooling and de-puffing effects. The cooling blue gel makes my eyes feel alive, ready to take in the world.

So here it is – my skincare routine in its entirety. For my ‘wash and go’ girls, I urge you to step outside of your comfort zone and invest in a few skincare products to take your skin to the next level of perfection. The routines that I have detailed in this blog post and the last may seem very detailed, but both my morning and evening skincare routines take no longer than 5 minutes of my day (except my weekly face mask). Whether you’re a working girl or a busy stay-at-home mum, we all have 5 minutes in the day to help better ourselves. I am happy that I have managed to inspire some of you in your future skincare routines and I hope that you enjoy them as much as I enjoy mine.

What are your favourite skincare products? I am always looking to expand my horizons. Comment below with your favourite skincare tips and tricks.