Monday, 15 April 2013

March 2013 empties: Caudalie, Clarins, Clinique, Dove, L'Oreal and The Body Shop

Hey guys!

Hope you're well :-)

It seems March was a product-heavy month for me as I have LOADS of empties - mainly skincare apparently! 

Here are the products I used up:

Skincare:
























The Body Shop Seaweed Clarifying Toner

I bought The Body Shop Seaweed range to clear up my skin as it's always worked for me in the past and it did a pretty good job this time too! I love the scent of this range as it's so fresh and clean-smelling and I've read that seaweed has healing benefits so I'd definitely recommend this popping this in your basket.

Caudalie Cleansing Water

I've used he Caudalie Beauty Elixir for about six months now and I'm not convinced it lives up to the hype - but this certainly does! It's a gentle micellar water-type solution that removes every trace of make-up. I have yet to try the infamous Bioderma but until then, I'll happily continue using this. 

Clarins Instant Eye Make-Up Remover

As you will probably already know, I'm on the hunt for the Holy Grail eye make-up remover. I've tried so many I've lost count, but this one is definitely up there with the best of the best! As a contact lens wearer, it's really important that my eye make-up remover gets rid of EVERY trace otherwise it gets messy - and this certainly does :-)

Beauty Formula Radiate & Glow Brightening Facial Mask

I picked this up on a whim in Savers and it's actually pretty good! I popped it onto my skin for about 10-15 mins and my complexion looked noticeably brighter afterwards. Perfect for creating that elusive, supermodel-esque radiant glow!

Avon Clearskin Blemish Clearing Astringent Toner

This is a REALLY strong toner that I use when my skin is playing up. I know it gives it a good, deep clean but it does sting sometimes and I wouldn't recommend using it if your skin is cracked/severely blemished.

Clinique Rinse-Off Foaming Cleanser

I loved this because it had a really nice rosemary scent and lathered up well. It was ideal for popping in my travel bag for excursions and I'd definitely re-purchase. 

Hair:




L'Oreal Elvive Smooth & Polish 60 Second Saviour*

I love things that work in like a minute because I'm one of those people that's ALWAYS busy so this was a real gem. I simply applied shampoo and conditioner as normal then added this to my locks before combing it through. It left my hair feeling SO soft!

Dove Intensive Repair Express Conditioner

I'm pretty loyal to the Dove Express Conditioner range because they do want they say on the tin - they work, quickly! I love the scent of this one - it's like the traditional Dove soapy smell - and I would definitely re-purchase it. In fact the whole Dove haircare range is pretty great if I'm honest.

Body:
Imperial Leather Citrus Burst Shower Gel*

Obviously, there's not much to say about a shower gel but this one lathered up nicely, smelt nice and lasted forever! So it gets a thumbs up from me.

What did you use up this month?

Let me know!

Love,

Sophia

xo

Sunday, 14 April 2013

New hair! Dip-dye at home: L'Oreal Preference Wild Ombres in No 1 Light Brown to Dark Brown

Hey ladies,

I hope you're well and enjoying the spring weather!

So as you may or may not know, I'm something of a hair chameleon. From sunny blonde locks in the summer to the deepest burgundy come winter, I can't last a few months without changing my hair colour.

Most recently, I took inspiration from these celebs and ventured into the world of ombré...
I absolutely love dip-dyed ends on celebrities but for some reason I always thought the look wouldn't transcend into real life - on normal, non-famous people in other words!

Jessica, Lily, Caroline and Drew all have beautiful dip-dyed locks but of course they've all had their colour applied professionally and no doubt an expert hairdresser tended to their ends before these pictures were taken.

Nevertheless, the moment an at-home dip-dye kit landed on my desk, I immediately knew I had to give it a go and my younger sister agreed to help me out as it was my first time going ombré!
The dye in question was L'Oreal Preference Wild Ombres No 1 Dip Dye Hair Kit Light Brown to Dark Brown, RRP £6.00.

The dye was actually really easy to apply, but I didn't use the brush that was included after I heard a couple of horror stories about how it left an obvious line in your hair.

I simply mixed up the dye as per the instructions and applied it to the lengths of my hair (below my ear level) with my hands with gloves on. I used all of the dye that was included until the bottle ran out.

I left it on my hair for about 40 minutes and then washed it out with the intensive conditioner included.

The first thing I noticed was the condition of my ends. They were literally so knotty when I tried to wash it out, I couldn't even comb it through.

To combat this, I applied a lot of hair oil to the parts of my hair that the dye had coloured and blow-dried it - but it was still pretty dry.

Here's how it looked on the first day:
When I first dyed it (in the evening), I didn't notice much difference, but I could definitely see the colour the morning after. It wasn't exactly the colour I was looking for - nor was it the colour on the box - but it had dyed it lighter.

The ends were a reddish brown that certainly looked ombré but it was very subtle and my ends were still SO dry!

I've had my hair like this for about a week now and the main thing I'd say is that it requires A LOT of after-care!

My hair is generally in good condition but the dip-dye kit made it really dry and knotty. It's meant I've needed to apply a lot more intensive conditioner and hair oil than before.

Now, I'm happy with the colour of the ends but there's no doubt my hair is in a worse condition than before I used the dye.
I guess it's no more damaged that it would be if I had bleach highlights added professionally - but I suppose for some reason I just wasn't expecting it.

If you're looking to change-up your look for spring and you're on a bit of a tight budget until your next payday, I would definitely recommend giving this at-home ombré kit a go.

But be warned, it does make your ends very dry and an intensive conditioner is needed to repair the damage caused. I think I'll be taking a visit to the hairdresser to chop off my ends in the next couple of months!

Have you used an at-home ombré kit? Tempted?

Let me know over on Twitter now or in the comments.

Love,

Sophia

xo

Friday, 5 April 2013

TK Maxx beauty haul: Orly, Essie, Eyelure, Dainty Doll, Yardley, Elizabeth Arden, TIGI

Hey loves!
I hope you're having a great day :-)
Now I don't know about you, but the beauty section in TKMaxx is one of my many weaknesses! I literally cannot step in there without picking something up. It's definitely that 'get it or regret it' mentality that takes over!
Here's what I've stocked up on in my past few visits...
Nails:

Essie No Chips Ahead Chip Free Top Coat - £5.99

I literally must have like a thousand top coats but you can never have too many, right? I'm quite new to the Essie bandwagon - I'm more of an OPI girl myself - but I look forward to trying this out and seeing if it helps maintain my nail colour.

Orly Mani Mini Lacquer Trio - RRP £15.00 NOW £3.00

What a bargain! £1 each for Orly nail polish - that's amazing! Here's the colours that came in the three pack:

From L-R: Orly Prelude to a kiss, Jealous, much? and Faint of Heart

The baby pink shade (far left) looks like the perfect French manicure colour, while the mint green (centre) is great for spring as pastels are really on-trend this season. The grey shade (far right) isn't one I'd normally choose but I reckon I'll wear it more in the winter.

Make-up:

Katy Perry for Eyelure Lashes in Pretty - RRP £5.95 NOW £2.99

I've always been a Katy Perry fan, but since watching her documentary film Katy Perry: Part of Me, my obsession with her has skyrocketed! I'm one of those people who buy products just because they're associated with a celeb - Kardashian Kolor being one example - so I literally bought these so I could have eyelashes like Katy Perry! We'll see if that works...

Dainty Doll make-up set - RRP £24.00 NOW £7.99

I've never tried Nicola Roberts' beauty range Dainty Doll before but being a pale person - NC15 in MAC, if you're interested - I was intrigued to test out this range. The three pack included:

Lipstick in 006 Baby Love, Eyeshadow Base in 001 Frankie Girl and Cream Blusher in 001 Paper Roses

I think I'll do a full review of these products but for now I will say I'm a little underwhelmed. The eyeshadow base was very dry and the cream blush was too sheer. The lipstick was quite nice though - very soft and creamy in a 'my lips but better' shade.

Face and body:

Yardley London Royal English Daisy Eau de Toilette 50ml - RRP £9.99 NOW £5.99
I've always wanted this perfume ever since it was released a couple of years ago for Kate Middleton. I've heard Yardley is quite a historical brand in the UK and some of their scents aren't quite - but this one is just perfect for spring and really lifts your spirits!
Elizabeth Arden Deep Cleansing Mask - £4.99
I love to indulge in a face mask at the weekend as my skin gets very oily and this one is great for drawing out all the impurities and giving my skin a good refresh.
Hair:

TIGI Catwalk Headshot Shampoo and Conditioner - RRP £25.90 NOW £11.98

I first used this haircare range in the hairdressers and my locks felt amazing afterwards so I immediately picked this up when I saw it. It makes my hair so soft and silky and I'd definitely re-purchase!

TIGI Rockaholic Rock Out Shine Blaster - RRP £9.95 NOW £3.99

I used the TIGI Rockaholic detangler last year and I was really impressed so I thought I'd invest in this bargain hair oil! I add a little bit to the ends of my hair when it's towel-dried and it adds a lovely sheen to my hair.

Visited TK Maxx recently? Picked up any beauty bargains?

Let me know in the comments or over on Twitter now!

Love,

Sophia

xo