Fashion - Beauty - Mum Life

Monday, 10 July 2017

St Tropez - Self Tan Express Bronzing Facial Sheet Mask / Try on / Review / First impressions

I am a bit of a fan of sheet masks, I make no secret of this, in fact I often make an idiot of myself by applying this on Insta stories and make stupid faces whilst wearing it. Sorry I just can't help myself. (see vid below)

I am also partial to a bit of fake tan too, the subtle/take the edge off/give a bit of a glow type. I can't do full on tan, it doesn't suit me, plus I am not the best applicator (think tiger stripes)

So when I saw that St Tropez had launched a new sheet mask embedded with tanning agent, I was sold, I hot footed it down to boots and popped one in my basket (along with the one hour tan which was equally as intriguing, but I will save that for another post)

I paid £15.00 for the Self Tan Express Face Sheet (pack of 2) as part of a buy one get one half price offer across the St Tropez range here . I later found them on Beauty Bay that sells them singularly for £4.99 here

I will have to say from the start I am not sure how I felt about this mask, the idea in principle was fantastic, but then the fears of an orange mask left on my face was strong. The fear wasn't enough to put me off though, so after a previous evening of exfoliating/moisturising, I was ready to give it a try. 

The strength of colour you want is up to you, leaving it on for 5 mins for a light shade, 10 for a medium and 15 for dark. To test it out for the first time, I went middle of the range and opted for 10 mins to see what finish I get, a bit scary on my pale skin. 

Like other sheet masks, you unfold and peel away the protective film and apply to your face, smoothing it out as much as possible before leaving it to do it's magic (and wash your hands of course)

Whats the blurb? well it is supposed to give you flawless tan after 8 hours, with no tan lines and it also has hyaluranic acid in it to help with hydration to add to the dewy finish. 
After the 10 minutes, I peeled off the mask and massaged the residue into my hairline, around the eyes and down the neck as directed, which I guess means you will not get the dreaded tan lines. I applied this of an evening, went to bed and got up in the morning to discover.....

It had worked, nicely! an even tan, no patchiness and actually a nice colour. I will be honest I was expecting more of an orange hue, but I was pleasantly surprised. I did not have any tan lines where the mask ended, it was all even - I am not sure if that was down to the mask or the fact that I gave a thorough massage afterward, either way there were no tan lines.
It also left my skin fresh and plump, with no pesky breakouts, always a concern when trying something new on blemish prone skin.

Over all I am pleased with the results it gave, would I buy them again? yes and no, yes because they work well, but from a cost point of view it would not replace my current method of adding some Clarin's tanning drops to my moisturiser. This is more of a treat mask for a special occasion rather than for regular use.

If you fancy watching me try out this mask, I filmed a review which you can see below:


Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Suck it in! - Wearing a summer dress - Shapeez

"The joy of dressing is an art."
John Galliano

I think we can safely say that it is dress season, OK I've said it now! (cue the pouring rain) well at least we get intermittent sun which, in my eyes, calls for summer dress wearing.

There's so many that I have my eye on at the moment, too many to be precise, but sometimes I will take a look at one and immediately think - I love it but its not for me. Why is that? what I really mean is, I love it but my mum tum will be shown in all its glory in that one - NEXT!

Recently I have been trying a different approach, instead of instantly dismissing something I will at least try and if it doesn't work then take it back - that's what a receipt is for right? The key here is to try it on with different underwear options because it really does make such a difference.
For all of the ladies we look at and admire in their fitted dresses, I can guarantee decent underwear is a key player in the overall look.

For me, I have two main go to underwear items when I am wearing something fitted and they both SUCK IT IN. I do actually refer to them as suck it in pants, even though they are more like suck it in suits covering boobs down to the thighs.

The first one is a pair of M&S undies, these are the tighter of the two, borderline can't breathe but it does a really good job of holding it all in! one I keep for event type dresses (left in pic below)
The other is a bit more comfortable to wear, I was recently kindly sent a Shapeez to try - these give more of a slimline fit to smooth out the silhouette, but I can still move freely (and eat) in these. The main selling point here is that it creates a smooth back silhouette (right in pic below) you can take a look at their site here

They are by no means an alternative for the gym, I am still working on that one. But it does make me feel a bit more held in place, with no wobbly bits hanging free underneath the dress! nice vision for you there.

The downside to this is (well depending how you look at it) is that I am spending more on dresses, like this Zara number below. I whipped it on and dismissed it as I felt like I had to pull too much on the waist tie. However, trying in on again with the right underwear gave me a bit more space and it felt much more comfortable to wear. I couldn't size up on it because it would then be too big on the shoulder/bust area, the different underwear option worked much better here.


Tuesday, 4 July 2017

June Favourites - The Body Shop Honey Bronze, Skin Defence, Diptyque, Zara skirt and more!

June was a bit of a different month because it was holiday month. I went to Spain (Javea) for a week with the family, it was great! only now it seems like a distant memory.

It did, however, mean that I got to try out a few things that I was saving for holiday. You may or may not know, but I kinda have an interest in skin glowing products (you wouldn't think it to look at me, as soon as I step off the plane my colour goes!) so I got to have a little play around with glow enhancing goodies.

The Body Shop Honey Bronze - Drops of Sun Holiday Glow Creator - £12.00

I bought this as part of a three for two offer, this one being the cheapest out of the three so it was the free item. The tan coloured drops can be added to foundation or moisturiser to add a bit more colour to the skin. I like to add it to the Giorgio Armani Power Fabric foundation to tint it slightly, especially whilst I was on holiday, and it didn't affect the consistency at all. I also put a few drops into sun cream, again to add a bit more colour which I found worked quite well. I assume you could use it neat, I have not tried this, but it depends on how dark you want to go! I find the dropper application quite handy, and personally I think this is the best way to dispense this type of product. This doesn't contain any tanning agent, it is just makeup to add a tint to your current routine. Link here

The Body Shop - Honey Bronze Tinted Leg Mist - £16.00

Whilst in the Body Shop I also spotted the glow mist for legs, again this is just make up that you spray onto the legs to add a bit of colour. This is essentially the same thing as the droppers but it is a lighter texture which glides easily straight onto the skin. I actually used this on my arms too (and anywhere else that needed it) just to add the same colour, no reason why not! I haven't tried it on my face though, I think I will stick to the drops for that one. Personally I like to spray it onto my hand first and apply it that way, I feel like I get better coverage. Link here

The Body Shop - Skin Defence - Multi-Protection Essence - £16.00

This was the reason I went into The Body Shop in the first place (typical me buying more than I went in for!) I needed a facial SPF for holiday, a task I never like. every SPF I have tried in the past has been, heavy, greasy, pore clogging. This however absorbs like a dream, leaving no residue and caused no break outs. I really do love this! It's become part of my morning routine and I will be repurchasing it! I have written a post on it, you can find it here

Diptyque Roses candle - £24.00

I find Diptyque candles a bit hit and miss, and actually sometimes I'm a little disappointed. But this time it was different, and in comes the Rose scented candle. Normally, I am not one for rose scented items, just a bit too floral if you get what I mean. This one however is strong yet not over powering, it fills a room but its not over the top. I actually find it a very relaxing scent, and compared to the lavender one (which is my go to relaxing scent) I think I actually prefer this at the mo. It doesn't quite match my love for Jo Malone candles, but its still a winner. Link here

The Life Changing Art of Not Giving a F*ck - By Sarah Knight - £9.09 (Amazon Prime)

This was my holiday read, quite funny to see the looks I got when I told people what I was reading! but you know what? I don't give a f*ck! ha! applying it already! in a nutshell, this book reminds you that there are only a certain amount of things you can worry/care about, pick those things wisely, and the rest of it? well who cares! I have written a review which you can find here

Victoria Beckham Morning Aura Illuminating Creme - £68.00

OK so you know that glow I go on about? look no further because this cream does the trick. I am not talking about tanning, I am talking about an actual glow. This is a part moisturiser/part primer, which means you can wear it either on its own or underneath foundation. I like to wear it both ways, I particularly liked it on holiday when I wanted to wear minimal makeup but still have a nice glow. It is a bit pricey I know, but you won't regret paying the price (well I don't anyway) because it does exactly what it says. Link here

Zara Pleated Midi Skirt - down to £25.99

In case you didn't know, the Zara sale is on (but I bet you already knew that!) so naturally, I went online as soon as the sale went live and filled my basket in a frenzy. Once I had calmed down, I halved my basket, went in for browse round 2, and came across this beaut. Now if you are a bit hippy like me, you will know that some pleated skirts can enhance the hip area. I find that they can balloon out a bit and make me look even wider. This one however, hangs beautifully! the length is just right and the colour is gorgeous, so much nicer once I had received it. I feel this item will be worn a lot over the next few months! link here

That's it for this month, if you fancy watching the vid in relation to this post you can find it below:


Sunday, 2 July 2017

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up - Marie Kondo - Review & Applying The Magic

"Housework can't kill you, but why take a chance?"
Phyllis Diller

I'm not what you would describe as the most tidy person, I promise I do try, but I'm not by any means a natural. Use something and then put it back - yes that is logic, I get that. The reality? use it, put it down for a second, then just like that its existence has been erased from my memory, even though it is still sat directly in front of me. That is until I enter a room and can barely walk in because of all the non-put back stuff. Sometimes I feel like Dory from Finding Nemo, always forgetful when it comes to returning things to their home, but at least I can remember 42, Wallaby Way, Sydney.

Now you wouldn't believe me if you entered my house, but I don't actually like clutter, in fact I detest it. Yet I am a firm believer in "A tidy house, a tidy mind" - hence why my mind currently represents a NEXT sale (don't even get me started on the folded T-shirt piles in Primark - anyone who has the patience for that job is a saint)

So now that I have pointed out that 1) I am crap at tidying and 2) I hate mess, what exactly am I going to do about it? the same as every problem - read a self-help book and hope that the problem sorts itself out.

The book of choice? Marie Kondo - The Life Changing Magic of tidying - a book that was mentioned in The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck that I recently read. Anything with life-changing in the title and I'm sold!
Now I am actually listening to the e-book, mainly because I want to use my spare time wisely (on Instagram) so I listen to this WHILST tidying - get me multitasking. One thing is for sure, if you listen to something about tidying, whilst tidying, the likelihood of actually tidying is high. Try listening to it whilst sat eating cake - it doesn't work. Cake with bake off on the TV however - a different story.

So I am going to break this down into a few posts because I have not finished listening to the book yet, just hang a work in progress sign over your screen.

This is what I have learnt so far and how I have/am going to apply it:

- Make tidying an event 

 Y'know, get all excited about it. Instead of saying - "Woo Hoo it's Friday!" it should be "Woo Hoo it's the day I get to clean out my drawers!" excited yet? OK, then you need to think of it as a life changing event, after this mega clear out you will never have to do it again and will have mental clarity (her words, don't shoot the messenger). Clearly, Marie has never been into a pound shop because the amount of tat I accumulate from there means more than a one off blitz. ("But it's two for a pound, I only need one, but I get TWO! who's really winning here Marie?")
Joking aside, I am actually a bit excited about sorting out my socks (still don't get out much) it needs to be done and I do think the mental fog will clear a but if I sorted out my tat.

- Do it in one hit 

Don't think you can get away with saying "I will do a little a day" nope, doesn't work here. Blitz the muther, get rid, get it gone. Now it would be hard to get it all done in one day, but make sure you pick regular chunks of time to devote to decluttering.

- Does it spark joy?

Now here comes the tough bit, what do you actually discard? It is so easy to keep hold of things "Just in case" or "Maybe I would wear it again" etc. So the answer here it to hold each item and ask "Does it spark joy?" If you clutch hold of wet look leopard print leggings (still with the tag on) and they spark joy then keep them. However if you think "I might slim into them one day/they might come back into fashion/they are brand new/what the hell was I thinking" well, that's not joy is it - get rid. Be ruthless.

- Don't palm it off onto family

Apparently this is a no no, because you are just passing the burden. This is true, I know this too well because my mum does this to me almost daily. The majority of stuff I need to get rid of is actually her hand me downs. So she is not exempt from my decluttering - in fact this morning I handed over three candle holders she had passed to me, and said "these will look nice in your living room" With that I turned and ran before she could respond. Watch out - a box of junk is coming to a door step near you soon! (in my mind this also ticks the box of a random act of kindness too)

I have paused the audio at the art of folding, as a draw stuffer, this is all way too much information to take in in one hit. I am going to start by decluttering and then I will be back with my roll/fold techniques.

Bin bags at the ready, route to the charity shop planned, people lined up for "gifts" I am ready for mental clarity.


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