I’m back…

Summer

A snapshot of my summer!

 

Autumn has officially arrived and with that the return of my blog! Its been a little while since my last post, I took a little ‘Me’ time over the summer to do grown up things like buying my own apartment and I also squeezed in a holiday!

Taking a break means I have so much to talk about so for my first post it only seems right to talk about some of the products I’ve been loving over the summer and into Autumn.

The first thing I have to mention is my skin,Its been a very long emotional journey but finally I can say have clear skin. It’s not perfect but what girl my age can say they never get a spot!  It’s hard to believe how bad my skin was when I look back at my previous blog posts. If there is anyone reading this that suffers with oily acne prone skin then I would highly recommend using MD Formulations skin care it has literally changed my life. I started off with the Anti-Blemish kit but now just use the products individually as my skin has improved so much.  I use the Facial Cleansing Gel every morning and night while showering, followed by the Glycare Lotion and use the Vit- a-Plus clearing complex if I have a spot emergency. I wasnt keen on the moisturiser that came in the pack,I found it way too drying even for my oily skin but the cleanser, lotion and clearing complex are a total winner and I urge anyone who is suffering with acne fed up with antibiotics to give these amazing products a try.

With summer behind us it only means one thing… Fake tan Thursdays are back! Strangely enough the tan I’m loving right now is one that last year I couldn’t stand! The tan in question is the Vita Liberta Extra Rich Tinted Self Tan lotion, its my go to tan every Thursday at the moment. The tan has a gel like texture and when applied feels virtually undetectable which is where I was going wrong last year- I was applying way too much. You really don’t need to use much to get a flawless,even natural looking tan. The tan claims to give optimum skin conditioning and a perfect fade which I am in total agreement with.This tan really is long-lasting and fades naturally like no other tan I have come across, I don’t feel the need to scrub it all off and start again after 5 days!

One thing I give up when the summer ends is my lash extensions, I think its important to give my lashes a break so am always on the hunt for a great mascara. My current favourite is the Lancome Hypnose Drama and I have to say this mascara is so good I am really enjoying having my lashes natural. The shape of the brush really allows me to coat every single lash and the deep black  shade  gives me really  the really dramatic thick lashes that I love!

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Wearing Lancome Hypnose Drama

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bareMinerals READY Foundation Review

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Another day means another foundation review! Apologies for the lack of posts in recent weeks I’ve been super busy and it seems by blog has been neglected in the process.

I’ll be honest I’ve never really been interested in powder foundation before but heard such good things about Bare Minerals I thought its only fair I give it a go. I’ve never really understood the concept of powder foundation or believed it could provide the coverage of a liquid foundation. This however has potentially changed my mind!

I’ve been wanting to review this for a while but unfortunately I needed a week in the sun before I could even contemplate wearing the shade I had been matched up to. Either Boots had really bad lighting or the assistant mistook me for an oompa loompa! That said the shade R350 is the perfect shade for when I’m on holiday which you can see from my picture is more like the colour of bronzer.

Bare Minerals have a brush specially designed to use with this foundation however it’s pretty pricey and as long as you have a flat topped brush it will do the trick. I like to use either a Real Techniques Buffing Brush or Real Techniques Kabuki Brush to buff into my skin and build coverage.

The coverage can be anything from natural to full coverage and you can build up gradually, in fact I was surprised how full coverage this could be. I personally really like this foundation for holidays what I love is that it’s like your skin but with a smoother more even finish. Like your skin but better!

Now for cons! If you have blemishes or spot prone skin this foundation isn’t going to look as great or provide the same finish as liquid foundation. I love this foundation for good skin days but it’s just not in the same category as a liquid foundation for covering blemishes and it can get a little cakey if you keep trying to cover them.

As for staying power this holds up pretty well when teamed with primer. A few blots are needed throughout the day but what oily girl doesn’t! After a busy day in the office I still look presentable so this passes the test.

So my final thoughts on Bare Minerals Ready Foundation…If you have relatively good skin this is a really nice foundation that will provide a flawless finish, buildable coverage and its quick and easy to apply. If your super oily and spot prone I would stick to liquid foundation I really like this foundation but I’m not a powder foundation convert by any means!

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My Skin Story Continued…

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For those of you that follow my blog regularly you will be aware my skin struggles. It’s been about 5 weeks since my previous post and I promised I would keep you all updated on my progress so here I am.

Firstly I would just like to say thank you for all the kind messages and comments it was quite hard for me to open up about such a sensitive issue but I had such a fantastic response. If you didn’t catch the first part of my story you can read it here:

https://bdellbeautyblog.com/2014/04/19/my-skin-struggle/

I can’t believe I am actually saying this but I believe finally I am starting to make progress! It’s been a very long road but I’m finally starting to see results. Cue smiley face! 😊

To recap in my last post I had just started to use Skinoren Azelaic Acid along with Erythromycin oral antibiotics. Since then I have been put on repeat prescription for the Erythromycin and am taking 1 tablet twice a day and I apply the Skinoren cream morning and night.

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At first I didn’t think much to this and it’s very very slow progress however I would say that this has helped with inflamed acne. I don’t get as many big spots as I used to but my main concern was the congestion underneath my skin and I really don’t think it’s works for that.It also gives me ridiculous hunger pangs all the time which is really annoying!

Skinoren Azelaic Acid 20%

So this stuff works but it’s not a quick fix! Again it’s a very slow process but you can see from my photo it did reduce the congestion under my skin. Not completely but I think over time the effectiveness will increase. Which is really not what you want to hear when you have bad skin you just want it gone!

MD Formulations Anti Blemish Solutions Kit

This stuff trumps both of the above! I’ve been using this set for about a week and I literally feel like my spots are melting away. My pores are tighter, my skin is less oily and the texture of my skin has improved massively.

The kit consists of a facial gel wash,a toning lotion, clearing gel, moisturiser, eye cream and sun protector and it works wonders. I was highly recommended these products by a friend and was able to purchase online from Feelunique.com. I am so impressed with the results even after a weeks use and will be posting a full review of the set in the coming weeks.

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Right to left- Before Treatment, Using Erythromycin, Erythromycin & Skinoren, above combined with MD Formulations Anti Blemish Kit

It seems like things may be looking up for my skin and I’m hoping it stays that way! I will keep you updated with my progress and hope that this post helps anyone else that may suffer with problem skin.

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Holiday Blog Post

We all like to look our best on holiday and there’s a lot of preparation that goes in to this for us girls! I have just returned from an amazing break in Cyprus and in this post I will share with you my pre holiday routine along with some of my favourite holiday products.

Lashes

I always have my = lashes done before I go away I can’t deal with panda eyes or having to glue  false lashes on in the heat. In the past  I have had cluster lashes applied which are around 3 lashes in a cluster which are glued on to your own lashes. These last about a week and I love the fullness they provide however they can be very damaging to your natural lashes.

This time I had individual lash extensions applied which are more expensive than the clusters but a lot kinder on your natural lashes and they last alot longer.I had mine applied by my good friend Soodi last Monday who is fantastic.  I loved the fact I didn’t need to apply mascara whilst I was away and they still look great now.

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Nails

For years I had worn acrylic extensions on my nails but a few months ago I made the decision to take them off and begun the process of repairing my natural nails. I have a UV lamp at home and have been applying Shellac to my nails myself but decided to get them done professionally for my holiday. I had Gelish applied to my nails which feels much stronger than Shellac and I love the fact they don’t chip. These were also done by Soodi who is based in London. I have posted the link to her website below.

http://m.beautybysoodi.com
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Skin

For those of you that follow my blog you will know that I have been struggling with my skin and being bare-faced on holiday obviously I wanted it to look at its best. I heard that Microdermabrasion was really good for Comedogenic acne so I had an hour of Microdermabrasion at Pretty Chic salon in Leicester. My skin instantly felt silky smooth and all though at first I did have a few pimples appear my skin is now much clearer. They recommend to have this done every two weeks so I am going to continue to do so. I will be posting on the progress of my acne in the next few weeks so I will let you know how it goes.

Makeup

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Being a girl who loves makeup naturally I was going to treat myself to some goodies for my holiday! So I headed to MAC which if you hadn’t already realised is my favourite makeup brand.The first item I picked was Coral Bliss lipstick. Coral is the perfect holiday colour-It just spells summer! Coral Bliss gives a glossy peach finish which would compliment most skintones. The only thing to mention is if you do take one of the Creme Sheen Lipsticks on holiday the soft texture means they can get quite mushy- So keep it out of the heat.

I also picked up a blush in Ambering Rose which is a sheertone blush with reddish undertones and gold shimmery particles. I tend to go quite dark when I’m away so wanted a blush that will still show up through my tan. Ambering Rose works great for those with olive skin tones who still enjoy wearing a blush on holiday.

The last thing I picked up before I left  Prep+Prime Highlighter pen in Bright Forecast. Usually I would wear this in the shade Light Boost which has a very yellow undertone; this one has a more peachy undertone so is more suitable for the summer.

On my return I was distracted in the airport by a huge Mac stand. I had been wearing a range of foundations whist on holiday my favourites being Studio Fix Fluid which is a staple in my makeup bag and also Makeup Forevers HD Foundation.

I wanted to get matched up for when I was tanned to use when I go on holiday and  I decided to give Studio Sculpt another go as it provides full coverage but a more dewy finish than the SFF. I have tried Sculpt a few times but wanted to try it again now that  I have managed to control my oiliness. I was matched up to the shade NW35 which compliments my tan perfectly along with a Studio Fix Powder in NC45 to match. I will post a full review on the Scuplt in the coming weeks.

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My Skin Struggle

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I haven’t blogged for a few weeks because I’ve been really struggling with my skin so this post is a little sensitive for me and not something I would usually share. My doctor  has advised that I am suffering with both inflamed and comedongenic acne. For those of you that don’t know inflamed acne is the larger red spots or yellow heads and comedogenic acne is under the skin such as black heads and blocked pores. I have tried various topical lotions such as Zinert and Dalacin T in the past and both worked for a short period of time but became less effective as time went on.

Contrary to what people believe I have real problem skin (I’ m just really good at doing my makeup!) and was prescribed a course of Erythromycin antibiotics 250mg 4 times a day for 3 weeks to try and clear my acne. I have now completed the course and there has been an improvement with the inflamed acne but I still have problems underneath my skin. I have posted a before and after picture below and you can see that my skin looks congested and almost looks bobbly.

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Left- Before Erythomycin Right-After

 

I sent this picture of my skin to the online doctor at Pharmacy2u.co.uk and they have been fantastic. I have now been prescribed Skinorem cream (Azelaic Acid) which is meant to help unblock the pores- I will keep you posted on my progress. If your struggling with your skin and are unable to get to the doctors I would 100% recommend using Pharmacy2u who will give you an online consultation and prescribe medicine if needed.

Another product I have found has really helped me and works wonders in Panoxyl Aquagel 10. This is a gel that contains Benzoyl Peroxide which is used to treat acne and it really works especially for inflamed acne or if you have a spot you need to get rid of by the morning! You apply this at night as a film on the skin- Be careful as the peroxide on this will bleach your sheets!

I am lucky that I am able to cover my acne with make up  but failing the Skinorem cream I am thinking about asking to go onto Dianette. I would be really interested to hear any suggestions or if anyone else has suffered with this type of acne.

 I will keep you updated on my progress…

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Making The Most Of Your Foundation

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I am a firm believer in making the most out of your foundation and have mentioned many times before on my blog about pairing your foundation with other products to improve the finish and longevity of your make up.

I have put together some tips and my favourite products that I find help improve the appearance of my makeup and help it stay put all day long.

Moisturiser

For a very long time due to my oily skin I used to skip the moisturiser, I now understand that all though oily my skin still craves moisture and without it- It rebels! Whilst I’m not a fan of a heavy moisturiser I do find that a light moisturiser provides the perfect canvas for my makeup.

Dermalogica Active Moist- £24.50

This is my absolute favourite moisturiser in fact I’m not sure I will ever stray from this! When first applied Active Moist feels quite thick but it really sinks into the skin leaving the skin feeling super soft with no residue.

I purchase all of my Dermalogica skin care products from Beauty Flash you get a really good discount and they also provide you with free samples- http://www.beautyflash.co.uk/dermalogica

Clarins Hydra Matte Lotion- £26.00         

Another favourite of mine is the Clarins Hydra Matte lotion. This is a much thinner consistency than the Active moist and feels really light and refreshing on the skin. This a really nice product however despite the thinner consistency I would still say that the Active moist sinks in to the skin more and leaves me feeling matte for longer.

Primer

Primer is one of those things that I thought was pointless for years and it wasn’t until my skin started to get very oily a few years ago that I even considered using a primer. The first primer I ever used was the MAC Face Protect SP50 which at first I really loved but over time I found that my skin got used to this and it wasn’t so effective. I have used lots of different primers but the best one I have found to date is the Smashbox Photofinish Light.

Smashbox Photofinish Light- £25.00

I really wanted to try the Smashbox Photofinish Primer after hearing so many celebrities raving about it. Unfortunately due to my oily skin the original Photofinish was not suitable for my skin despite being oil free-However I have heard great things about this so definitely one to consider if your more on the normal/dry side!

The original formula is very much like a lot of primers out there which are a thick clear paste and leave a slippery silicone like feel on the skin where as the light version is white in colour and is more like a light cream. This makes my skin feel really soft without feeling slippery or irritated and gives a really smooth finish ready to layer my foundation on to.

MAC Cream Matifiante- £15.00

I also really like this product which is actually multi use so can be used for priming the eyelids as well as the face. This is nowhere near on the same scale as the Smashbox Photofinish for me however it is a lovely product that improves the texture of the skin prior to applying foundation and works really well as a base.

Powders

I like to set my foundation with powder every morning either for a bit of extra coverage or a light dusting just to seal my foundation.

Mac Studio Fix Powder Plus Foundation- £21.50

This is actually a powder foundation that could be worn alone however this works perfectly for me over foundation and it’s my go to for when I need extra coverage. It really is fantastic and I love everything about this. It keeps me matte without looking powdery and provides a long lasting flawless finish.

Chanel Powder Universelle- £36.00

This is another powder that I love. If you prefer a loose powder to pressed then this one’s for you! It’s quite pricey but the luxurious finely milled powder gives a really flawless natural finish and helps make your foundation last all day.

Mac Blot Powder-£20.00

If you’ve got oily skin then this is match made in heaven. I literally could not live without this in my handbag. I use this for touch ups throughout the day and because there is no colour it means you can apply as many times as you want without it being cakey. Seriously if your oily skinned- Buy this now!

Setting Spray

Urban Decay All Nighter-£19,59

This is not something I use all the time but in the summer I really like to use the Urban Decay All Nighter setting spray. I believe Urban Decay also do a setting spray for oily skin called De-slick however I have heard that the All Nighter is actually better. I apply this after I have finished my make up just a few sprays and you’re good to go! It feels really light and refreshing on my skin as well as keeping my makeup in place.

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Clinique Stay Matte Foundation Review

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Top- 14 Vanilla Bottom-9 Neutral

Another day means another foundation to review and this one is gradually climbing to the top of my make up bag. The foundation I will be reviewing is the Clinique Stay Matte liquid foundation and its fast becoming my go to foundation each morning. I first bought this foundation when it first came out about 2 years ago and had heard it was going to replace the ‘Superfit’ foundation which was firm favourite with me and my friends. In fact this was my HG until I started wearing the Chanel Pro-Lumiere but again this was another one that was discontinued.

So I’ll start with the packaging which Iove. The foundation comes in a plastic squeezy tube which is a really nice change from the usual glass bottles this means it doesn’t weigh down my make up bag and you can control the amount of product perfectly without getting it every where. (Hurrah! Take note MAC!)

I have this foundation in 2 shades the lightest one being 9-Neutral which is perfect for winter and also the shade 14-Vanilla for the summer months which is slightly more golden. In terms of shades they aren’t as yellow as some of MAC shades and the 2 shades I own are definitely a more neutral tone. I actually really like  neutral shades as I find sometimes MAC foundations can be too yellow or too warm and I end up  having to mix them. I would recommend getting matched up at the Clinique counter or using Findation.com to help find your shade-I will pop the link to Findation below.

http://findation.com/

The consistency of this foundation is very much like the MAC Studio Sculpt which for those of you that don’t know is a gel based foundation- so its not as runny as your average liquid foundation. I have applied this foundation many ways but again find  that the most effective is with a damp Beauty Blender. This foundation is sheer to medium coverage and using the Beauty Blender I am able to get a more medium coverage and can build this up really easily.

I have been using this foundation for the past week and I’ve fallen in love with it all over again! It feels creamy to apply and comfortable on my skin and provides enough coverage to cover my blemishes as well as being flawless. Don’t be afraid of the matte in the name this foundation is by no means heavy or powdery.

Stay Matte is still a foundation I would definitely recommend for oily skin if teamed with the right products. I will be posting a blog soon on how to get the most out of your foundation.

Over all I’m really happy with this foundation and could well be on the way to earning HG status. I think it’s a really good all-rounder and would  also recommend this for someone with normal/dry skin again if teamed with the right products to suit your skin type.

Have you tried the Stay Matte… What did you think?

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IMG_4224 Wearing Shade 9 Neutral

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