Mini Boots haul and if the products are any good

I love Boots. It’s my spiritual homeland. Pretty much every time I go in, I come out with a armful of stuff and a shed load of advantage points, I can’t help it! So when I went to visit my friend who also has a Boots/beauty obsession I knew that I was going to be getting a lot of stuff. I was quite restrained (a little….maybe?) and left with a basket full of recommendations and impulse buys. I’ve given them a bit of a road test over the last few weeks so here are my thoughts on these products I picked up from Boots.

First up are the Barry M Unicorn Primer Drops Beauty Elixir. I’ve known about those £50, massively expensive unicorn drops from a brand I can’t actually remember for a while now but was never really interested in giving them a go. When I saw this shining purple bottle though I instantly picked it up and put it in my basket. It’s basically a hydrating primer that smells amazing and gives such a boost to by dehydrated skin but don’t make it oily – which is a big deal because I am an oily human being. It’s a bright pink colour with bits of shimmer in it, so looks a bit scary, but I’ve found it gives me a great base for foundation. My only problem is that there doesn’t seem to be a lot of product in it and I it might run out quite quickly but on the whole I’m a big fan.

Whenever I meet up with my friends, there’s always a moment before we go out when we pass round the Mac Fix+ with gold glitter in it. It’s something pretty special but because I’m tight I don’t fancy splurging on it myself (sorry). But when I saw Makeup Obsession, a brand I hadn’t heard of, had done one I got it straight away. Sadly I’m not a massive fan of this. The spray was okay but your face ends up soaking wet after a couple of sprays and after two weeks of use the nozzle on mine has broken with loads of product still left inside which is a bit annoying. But if you’re looking for a body spray then this could be fab because there’s so much glitter in it, it would look great on a night out. Not amazing but also not terrible.

After getting a recommendation from said Boots loving friend to get the Natural Collection Blush in Rosey Glow I took it and ran. How is this so cheap?! It was £1.99 and is a great product. Perfect on my skin as it’s pretty much my natural blush colour and builds up nicely so I don’t end up with a splodge of pink on my cheek. It really makes me want to try more Natural Collection products because I’ve been very impressed.

I was in need of a new foundation but didn’t really know which one to give a go next. Another friend recommendation later I picked up the Maybelline Fit Me Matte and Poreless Foundation. This is really great. I use it day to day and it blends really well, doesn’t take too much working with and looks pretty natural on my skin. The shade 100 is a good match for me as well. It gives medium coverage and a matte finish but doesn’t suck all the life out of my skin, and if I use the Barry M Beauty Elixir underneath I find it is a winning combination. I don’t know if I’d use it as a ‘night out’ foundation as my Revlon Colourstay gives me a bit more coverage but for everyday I’m a big fan.

When I was on a train on New Year’s Eve, I sadly lost the lid to my beloved Maybelline Eraser Eye Concealer and because I didn’t want my makeup bag to become full of sticky concealer, I had to bid it farewell. A few weeks on I realised I couldn’t live without it in my life and repurchased it without a seocnd thought. This time I went with the shade Ivory (is it new because I’ve always got light before now thinking that was the palest shade?). It’s a pretty good match for me, probably the palest I would go in a concealer but it does look fab under my eyes. I’ve professed my love for this product before so I won’t go on about it but if you haven’t tried it then I recommend you give it a go. It’s the best concealer I’ve ever used, especially under my eyes.

A Little Pay Day Treat | Glossier Haul

I placed my first Glossier order when it launched in the UK last year. It was a modest collection of products, the Milky Jelly Cleanser and two Balm Dotcoms, to see what the deal was and if I wanted to test anything else out. Six months later I needed to repurchase a new cleanser and took it as an opportunity to go wild (well wild for me) and pick up a few extra bits. Anyone wanting a bit of a discount then here is my link, go nuts!

I’m in love with the Balm Dotcoms, like it’s a serious bond. I have the Birthday one which I keep on my desk at work and the Coconut one that’s in my skincare stash. I fancied another one to either go in my bag or next to my bed and the Mint one seemed like a good shout. I love this flavour so much. Not only does it taste and smell amazing (like all the Balm Dotcoms I’ve tried) but it makes your lips feel cold and tingling, a bit like a plumping gloss. If anything gives my bit of extra juice then I’m all for it! I think this is my new favourite out of the three I’ve tried.

Glossier Boy Brow. Has there ever been a more hyped brow gel (except maybe Gimme Brow)? I nearly added it to my basket in my last order but I’d recently bought a new Eylure one and, to be honest, I thought that £14 seemed a bit pricy for the size. But I took the plunge this time and went for Medium Brown shade. So far I am quite impressed. The colour is spot on for what I usually go for, dark but not verging on black.

The whole reason for this order was to repurchase the Milky Jelly Cleanser, my go-to second cleanse that is a dream to apply and seems to be working for my skin. There’s no way this is going to take makeup off, at all but after taking my makeup off with another cleanser I go in with this to get the remaining bits that might have been left behind. I feel like it moisturises my skin but doesn’t leave it feeling greasy and after getting used to the slightly strange smell (kind of floral) I don’t think I could live without it. 

Because I was ordering the Milky Jelly Cleanser I thought I’d take the chance to try the Priming Moisturiser and buy the Phase One Set. I’d heard that if you had dry skin then it’s not that great but as I have oily dehydrated skin I thought I’d give it a go. I’ve only been using it for about a week but I have to say I’m really liking it. It reminds me a bit of the This Works Camera Close Up Primer which I really enjoyed using but was just a bit expensive when I went to buy the full size. It’s moisturising but leaves skin tacky as well and makeup has been going nicely over the top. I did a blog test a few days ago and it got to about 1pm before I had to dab down my oily face which for me is pretty impressive. I’m looking forward to giving this more of a test. 

I’ve been meaning to buy an SPF for a while now but I’ve just been too lazy. I’d heard Lily Pebbles rate the one from Glossier, the Invisible Shield, so (like most of these products) I just added it to the pile. First off, I think it smells like a chocolate orange, anyone else? I’m totally into it and could whiff it all day. The packaging is great, one pump gives the right amount of product for me. And the consistency is spot on, not tacky like the Priming Moisturiser but it’s not matte like a mattifying primer. This has really made me interested in trying out other SPF’s to see how they do but for now I’m really liking how this one is working.
As I’ve discovered that although my skin is oily, it’s also very dehydrated, I’ve developed a need for a moisturising mask. As my tester of the Oskia Renaissance Mask has come to an end, and is a bit too pricy to replace, I thought I’d give the Moisturising Moon Mask a try. I’ve only used it once so I can’t give my full thoughts on it but it’s a thick gel like cream that felt really ice when I applied it and gave my skin the plumping up it needed.
Is there anything else from Glossier that I should give a try?
Instagram shoutout to myself: Why not give my insta @abzisfabz a follow? 

Products that are seriously under hyped

There’s always talk about hyped up products, how great they are or even if they are worth all the ranting and raving in the first place. So today I thought I’d give a special mention to those products that don’t have much time in the limelight but are great and need to be shouted about.

Last year I delved into the world of NYX eyeshadows and I was seriously impressed. Their palettes get a lot of air time but I had heard next to nothing about their single shadows and I have no idea why. They’re around £4 each, come in a ton of different colours and finishes and can fit nicely into magnetic palettes. I bought four shades last year that I thought would be quite versatile and then a shimmery red to make things a bit more interesting. I think they’re so good for the price point and I have no idea why they don’t get the kind of credit they deserve.

Back when they were released around 18 months ago there was a bit of hype around the Mac Liptensity Lipsticks but after a few weeks it all quietened off and hasn’t really picked back up since. I am a total lover of this formula, creamy and comfortable on the lips but the pigment really packs a punch. I only have one of these (I’m much more of an eye shadow hoarder than a lipstick collector) in Smoked Almond and it’s my go to autumn lipstick – a warm nude that verges on brown. There’s a wide range of shades so why not give it a go.

Something which is slightly newer in my stash is the NYX blush in Mauve N’ Out. Why has no one piped up about these blushes before! If you have and I’ve totally ignored it I apologise but I am well and truly on board with this product. It is pigmented, which can be an issue if I’m not concentrating and decide to slap a load on my face, but when used correctly it gives a rosy flush to my face which perks it up in all the right ways. It feels very similar to my usual blush colour so I feel like it will go with any kind of makeup look. Small and compact, I’m looking forward to travelling with this!

If you’ve read a few of my posts recently you might have noticed my sudden love for lip gloss. I’m all about that plumped vibe and I’ve been cracking out the creamy finishes and the glossy products left, right and centre. The thing that made me come to my gloss loving realisation was the Pixi Lip Lift Max in Honey Sheen. It’s so good and I’ve heard next to no one share my enthusiasm for it. It has a subtle peachy shimmer so works great over the top of other lip products and it gives a great plump and tingling feeling without making it feel like someone is stabbing me in the lips with tiny knives. Such a great ‘throw in your bag’ product.

What is your favourite ‘underhyped’ product?

My purse hates me | Beauty Haul

What a few weeks it’s been. I was struck down with a mystery ‘illness’ that came and went within the space of a week (very bizarre) and then the Beast from the East arrived with its buckets of snow and freezing temperatures. So here’s something for you to warm you up – a few bits I picked up on a recent makeup splurge. So, snuggle under a blanket, grab a cuppa and let’s get cracking.

There’s a NYX store in Leeds and yes, it is as magical as it sounds. I picked up three bits when I was there, the first being a lip oil. I saw this and pretty much grabbed it and shoved it in the little NYX bag my friends kindly retrieved for me to merrily fill. I was thinking it was going to be like the oils you see on instagram that magically plump your lips ready for your lipstick of choice. It doesn’t do that but I’ve been putting it on after I do my base to get rid of the foundation that gets on my lips. An unnecessary step but I’ve been liking it! If you read my January favourites then you’ll have seen that I’m all about lip gloss at the minute so I decide to pick up one of the Butter Lip Glosses in Angel Food Cake. There were loads of shades to choose from but I wanted something nude-y and this one does the job really well. I’ve not stopped wearing it since I’ve got it – great shade, non sticky formula and makes my lips shine! Totally into it. The last thing I picked up from NYX was a blush in Mauve n Out. A massive impulse purchase that I don’t regret. It’s a cross between a pink and a plum and gives a natural blush colour for winter and I think I’m going to get a lot of use out of it day to day.

I’ve heard a lot of good things about the Maybelline Super Stay Foundation so I decided to pick up one. I’ve not used it that much since I’ve got it but my first impressions are very positive. I have the lightest shade and it’s a pretty good match for me. The coverage is medium to full, totally my bag, and it’s mattifying but not drying. I’ve needed to do a bit of blotting during the few days I’ve worn it but I have to do that with most of my foundations anyway.

And last, but definitely not least, is the Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer in Fair Neutral. I’ve had this a couple of times before and every time I repurchase it I remember how amazing it. Full on full coverage, great shade match for me and lasts me a decent length of time.

I’ve been spending again | Body and skincare haul

Another day, another haul.
I need to have a serious word with myself because I can’t afford to keep spending my wage within minutes of it landing it my bank account. But I can’t help it! There’s so much I want to test out and that means digging my hand in my pocket and hoping I’m getting the best deals for more Boots Advantage Points. This haul is very much half things I needed and half things I’ve been wanting to try for a few weeks, so no real impulse buys here (for once).

I needed to get some new shampoo and conditioner and I wanted to try one of the new Garnier scents. I’m not 100% sure what my hair type is but I felt that it could probably do with some nourishment so the Garnier Ultimate Blends Coconut Milk and Macadamia was the one for me. Garnier was on 3 for 2 when I snapped these up (and they’re still on 3 for 2 so go troops go!) so I bought the shampoo, conditioner and the hair mask. I’m trying to make a conscious effort to take better care of my hair and hopefully the hair mask will give my hair some TLC. Also it smells amazing! Another product I needed to stock up on was micellar water. I’ve been using the Simple Micellar Water for a few months but when I saw the 700ml bottle of Garnier Micellar Water was on offer for £5 I had to get it. It’s huge! And it came with a free makeup bag! Win, win, win! I’m a big fan of this micellar water and it’s definitely top of my list along with the Simple one so I’m glad to have such a big bottle.

Now onto things I really didn’t need but that I’ve been eyeing up for a little while. First up is the new (at least I think they’re new) Being Sanctuary Spa Body Butter and Bubble Bath in the Salted Caramel and Macadamia scent (I must be having a real macadamia moment). I’m a huge fan of sweet, cake-y scents and this is as sweet and as cake-y as they come. I’ve not had a chance to try the bubble bath yet but I’m seriously impressed with the body butter – it’s thick, hydrating and doesn’t leave me feel super sticky. They were £10 each, which for me is a little on the pricy side but the packaging makes it feel good quality and I’m impressed so far with the product inside. Last but not least in this haul are two new masks by Soap and Glory. I really excited when I saw Soap and Glory were releasing sheets masks because I’ve become a bit obsessed with them in recent months. Every time i go into Boots and Superdrug I seem to walk out with one – I really should learn to buy in bulk! I went for the Puffy Eye Attack Eye Mask, because I’ve always wanted to try out an eye mask, and The Fab Pore Pore Refining Mask, because all of the sheet masks I’ve tried have been for dry skin but this one is for oily – exciting!

What’s your favourite bath product – bath bomb, bubble bar, bath salt? I’d love to know!

The ‘my purse wants to cry’ haul

I need to stop spending money. Like seriously.
When it gets to the middle of the month and pay day is in sight I get really spend-ey, especially when I have money left to spend. I should be starting to save the money I don’t spend in the month but I end up blowing it all on random stuff. So here is the most recent time I blew my hard earned cash on pointless things!

Let’s start with something I was really excited to get but it took my local Superdrug so long to get it in that I’d forgotten what I wanted when I walked up to the stand, but I knew I wanted something! It’s the Tanya Burr Illuminating Powder in Champagne Sorbet and it was definitely worth the wait. It’s not the most intense highlight I have (Champagne Pop I’m looking at you) but it gives an amazing daytime glow that brings life to my face when I’m struggling in the morning. What a gorgeous champagne shimmer!

Skincare wise I was in need stocking up and the Body Shop didn’t disappoint. Once again they had an amazing deal/offer on and I ended up paying WAY less than full price. First up is the Vitamin E Eye Cream. It’s a thick cream that feels cooling and I’m enjoying using it so far. I really wanted to get a new moisturiser because the one I was using wasn’t sinking into my skin and making me feel greasy. I picked up the Vitamin C Glow Boosting Moisturiser. This smells amazing and makes my skin fell bouncy and hydrated. I also picked up the Vitamin C Energising Spray. I forgot how much I loved this spray, it just gives my skin a refresh and is just what it needs half way through the day. Repurchase of the Simple Micellar Water, love this.

When I was in Superdrug I spotted this L’Oreal Multi-masking Play-Kit and I’d definitely recommend picking this up if you’ve thought about trying these masks. There’s so much in these little pots, I’ve used it twice and I reckon I have another ten applications left, yeah I know. Also just had a check and they’re on offer! Also from Superdrug I picked up a Colab Dry Shampoo in Tropical. It gives my hair volume, makes it look less like a greaseball and smells amazing! Literally every time I move my head it smells like an island paradise.

Random bits and bobs include stuff for my bedroom. I’m having a redecorating moment so I bought a copper pencil pot for makeup brushes, a fake succulent plant and some copper spray paint, I’ve just spruced up my old desk chair, all from Wilkinson’s. I love Wilkinson’s for home stuff, it’s good and at a really good price.

What’s been a favourite recent purchase of yours?

Things I’m loving from Boots

A couple of weeks ago I did a rather large Boots haul and there were a lot of hits and also a couple of misses. But today we are focusing on the positives and I’ll be taking you through what I really loved from the haul (which if you haven’t read the post then you can read it here) and what things you should really pick up and try. Some things are new in, some are old that people have loved for a long time that I’m just very late to the party to. Enjoy!

Let’s start with brushes and from the Real Techniques Core Collection there are two that I’ve absolutely fallen in love with. I don’t know how I lived my life before the Buffing Brush. It is the perfect foundation brush, dense so that it can foundation can be buffed but with hairs that are long enough to give a nice finish to the foundation. It feels really soft and I don’t think I’ll be able to use another brush fro my foundation ever again. The second brush that I love from the collection is the Contour Brush. I’ve never owned a contour brush before because I thought that I didn’t need one but I was totally wrong. It makes the perfect cheekbone shape (because if you’re like me you need to make cheekbones as opposed to find them and enhance them) and, like the buffing brush, is super soft. This brush works really well with the next product I’m going to mention which is the Maybelline Master Sculpt Contour Kit. I’m still working with the best way to use this product but I’m really liking it so far. The contour shade isn’t too warm and isn’t too cool, although a light hand is needed as it can easily build up into a very harsh line. The highlight shade is very nice for everyday, and I do use it on a daily basis, but if you want something super shimmery and highlighting then this will be a little too subtle for you. Something that I picked up off the cuff was the Soap and Glory Love At First Blush Stick in Pink, Pop and Pearl. I’d seen something about these sticks on a couple of blogs so I thought why not pick one up as I didn’t have anything like this in my collection. I’m so glad that i picked it up because I’ve fallen in love with this product and use it everyday. It’s been described as a cream version of Nars Orgasm Blush and is just a beautiful shimmery pink on the cheeks. It lasts very well on the skin and I really want to try of the highlight of this as well because I can tell it’s going to be good. Something that I have rediscovered is the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer. I used to use this all the time but starting using other things but I’m so glad I went back to this one. You’ve heard it all before so I won’t go on about it but if you’ve never tried it then get yourself down to Boots now, you won’t regret it. I used to use the Rimmel Kohl Kajal in Jet Black religiously but I’m sorry to say I’ve moved on now. My holy grail eyeliner is now the Soap and Glory Smoulder Kohl Eyeliner. It stays in my waterline for a really long time without smudging, goes on smoothly and is jet black. It’s insanely good!

Hyped Products Haul

Birthday money spending time! Eeek! I went on a lovely little spending spree by myself and wandered around the shops picking up a few things that I fancied. I realised when I got back that the products I bought are all ones that beauty bloggers and youtube people love and rave about, which I didn’t even notice when I was picking them up. So I thought I’d do a products that are hyped haul with a bit of a mini first impressions because I’ve not had enough time to fully test the products. So without further ado let’s get into it!

Within the first few swipes of the Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara I knew it would be everlasting love. Two days later I still love it. I’ve not had this reaction to a mascara in a long, long time. I see instant volume and length, the colour is jet black and it doesn’t smudge at all throughout the day. Next up is the Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfecters in 05. I’ve been wanting to try these for a while now (obviously a Vivianna Does Makeup inspired purchase) and I haven’t been disappointed! It smells very sweet which I wasn’t expecting but I really like it and the colour is a very ‘my lips but better’ colour. The colour doesn’t last very long on the lips (couple hours maybe) but that’s to be expected. It’s nice to have something that I can just casually put on without having to worry about it. The Naked Skin Concealer in Fair Neutral is something that I have needed ever since my Mac Pro Longwear Concealer came to an end. The coverage is full which is what I really like but doesn’t look caky on the skin. I’ll keep you posted on more of my thoughts when I’ve given it a proper test run! Last but not least was a bit on an impulse buy, The Body Shop Drops Of Youth Youth Bouncy Sleeping Mask. I’ve read a lot of rave reviews on this over the last few weeks but I thought that it was more for people with really dry skin. From what I’ve seen over the last two days I was wrong. It’s a lot like my Origins Drink Up Intensive Face Mask as it gives my face some much needed moisture but is a lot lighter and is something that I can use on a nightly basis. Again I’ll keep you updated on my thoughts!

Mini Boots Haul

I just couldn’t help myself. It’s been a long time since I’ve had a proper Boots splurge so I had a great time having a root around the shelves! I’d just missed the 3 for 2 that was running throughout the store but L’Oreal and a few other brands were having the offer on within their stock so I took advantage. First off I needed to replenish my skincare routine. I was planning to repurchase the products I’ve been using for a while (click here to read my skincare routine) but I may have got a little bit side tracked. When having a browse of the Soap and Glory products I noticed that they had a micellar water so instead of being boring and buying the same old same old I branched out and so far I’m loving it! It gets makeup off really easy and makes my face feel really cleansed, but it does stink like cucumber. You do get used to it after a while but at first it is a bit much. Then instead of repurchasing my Body Shop Seaweed Toner I went for the Garnier Fresh Refining Toner which is for combination-oily skin. This is definitely one for stripping all of the oil off my face and although sometimes it can be a bit stingy it does what it’s meant to do which is fine by me. Now for the exciting part, things to make my face look better! I started off my getting the L’Oreal Infallible Matte Foundation which everyone and their dog are raving about. I have to say it’s one of the best foundations I have ever used. It prevents my skin from getting oily throughout the day and gives such good coverage that I don’t need to use much concealer. Speaking of concealer I decided to give the L’Oreal True Match Concealer ago. I haven’t really heard much about this one but I love the foundation and I have to say I’m so glad that I picked it up. It’s quite a heavy coverage which is right up my street and reminds me a lot of the Mac Pro Longwear Concealer with the consistency and the fact that it stays on all day. Finally I thought that now would be to branch out into the scary world of brighter lip colours. If you’re a long time reader of my blog then you’ll know that I stick to the neutrals and nothing else but with spring upon us I decided to be a bit more bold. The packaging of the L’Oreal Colour Riche Made For Me range is so beautiful that I couldn’t not buy one. I went for the shade Pink Passion and I feel like it’s a nice colour to dip my toe in the bright lip pool. I can wear it bold if I’m feeling more daring or just lightly dab it on to create a nice stain. More in depth reviews will probably be posted on here in the future but I hope you enjoy this little haul because there won’t be another one for a little while (unless I win the lottery!).