Putting Aldi beauty products to the test

I didn’t expect a quick trip to Aldi would prove so exciting for me as I entered with nothing and left with a handful of products which were the definition of an impulse buy. I’d heard of the Aldi beuty products and theur ‘dupes’ a few months ago and never really gave them a second thought. But when I spotted a few of them in the middle aisle of doom I had a real urge to give them a go.

I picked up the Lacura Exfoliating Mud Mask – dupe for the Glam Glow Supermud Clearing Treatment, the Lacura Aloha Bronzer – dupe for Benefit Hoola Bronzer, and Lacura Snapshot Ready Foundation Primer – dupe for Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer.

Before I got going with testing everything I wanted to see if the bronzer was similar/the same as Hoola. I don’t have the full size but I’ve got a mini that came free in a magazine a couple of months ago. As bronzers go they’re pretty similar. The Hoola one is slightly more brown and the Aldi has a bit more of a warm orange tinge, but nothing that’s too offensive. Pigment wise I’d say that Hoola is slightly more pigmented but only by a tiny bit. Not much separating the two.

Left: Hoola Bronzer | Right: Aldi dupe

My first impressions of the makeup products weren’t bad but they also weren’t amazing. The primer was very solid and it was a bit hard to rub into my skin so I ended up rubbing it into my fingers and patting on the parts of my face which get oily during the day, my nose, chin and forehead. The bronzer comes with this cute little brush, very much like Hoola, so I thought I’d give that a go. When I swatched the bronzer on my hand it was quite light so I went in heavy handed on my first go. Big mistake. This is a pretty pigmented bronzer, or at least on my skin tone, so I started off with an stripe down the side of my face. Not a great start. But when I blended it in and did the rest of my face I quite liked it. It’s the right amount of warmth and isn’t too dark for my very pale face. Not the easiest bronzer to work with as it took a bit of blending but not too shabby.

I’ve never tried the Glam Glow face mask that this Exfoliating Mud Mask supposedly dupes, but if you have the Himalayan Charcoal mask from The Body Shop then I’d say it’s very similar to that. When I applied it the only difference I noticed was the colour and the size of the exfoliating bits, they’re a lot smaller in the Lacura one (my guess is because it’s billed as an actual exfoliation mask. I first tried it on my nose and my chin as they’re the parts of my face that get the most oily and would benefit from a mask like this. I applied a thin layer and left it for five minutes (instructions say between five and ten so I thought I’d go lower for my first go). It dried down like a normal clay type mask and it brought out my pores which I’m guessing is a good thing as it looked like something was working – me showcasing my lack of skincare knowledge here. When I took it off a gave myself a bit of an exfoliation before getting rid of the rest with a flannel. Everything felt alright but I did notice that a couple of spots appeared on my chin later that night (could be a coincidence but thought it was worth mentioning). After reading a couple of reviews loads of people were saying that if you have sensitive skin the stay clear of this because it can do some damage, which might be something to bare in mind. I have to say that over the next few tries I had noticed that it was stinging a fair bit on my nose when I applied it, so I washed it off straight away because I don’t want it to be burning my skin!

Overall there were hits and misses. I think it’s going to take a bit longer to test out the mask but it’s not terrible. The exfoliating part is good but when it burns your skin, that’s not ideal. The bronzer is pretty fab for everyday. Not streaky and nicely warms up the face. The primer is a funny one. I like how it works on my nose but any other area, even my chin which is just as oily as my nose, sucks the life out my skin. So it may be a nose primer but not used for anything else.

Taking a trip down makeup memory lane

I was sat looking at my makeup the other day (you know, like normal people do) and I suddenly thought that a lot of it relates to a special time or has a significant moment attached to it. Even the most random and ‘boring’ of products reminds me of something that has happened. So, I thought it would be nice to look back at the makeup that give me my favourite memories and it might encourage me to get the products out of the drawer and use them a bit more!

Back in my early days of blog reading and Youtube watching the Tarte Amazonian Clay Blushes were big news. But being in the UK and no plans of visiting America on the horizon I just had to sit back and watch everyone rave about how amazing they were. So when we hopped on a plane to Florida in 2015, this was top of my Sephora shopping list. Obviously I bought the shade Tipsy (it was either that or Exposed – the go-to shades) and I still crack this out every Summer. Whenever I wear it I think of wandering around the Sephora in Florida (my first time in an American Sephora), filling my basket with vlogger recommendations. This product will always hold a special place in my heart.

The first non-stationary highlighter I bought was a great day. It was around this time two years ago after I’d been for an interview at the job I currently have, hooray! It was in Leeds and my mum went with me so afterwards we went out for lunch and popped along to Debenhams for a cheeky purchase to celebrate a job well done. The Urban Decay Afterglow Highlighter had just come out and it had received good reviews all round so I thought it would be a good one to give a go (up until this point I’d been using glittery champagne eyeshadows as highlight – it was very questionable behaviour!) The were three shades and I went for Aura, a pink/purple shade which I’d heard was good for people with pale skin. It’s a good product but this colour is just not me. It’s preety much purple and isn’t the vibe I usually go for but this product gives me such fond memories of that day that I don’t think I’ll be able to part with it anytime soon.


Kinda Sexy – to this day one of my favourite birthday presents. It was the first Mac (and only) Mac lipstick I’d been gifted and I was given it in La Tasca in Nottingham on my 20th birthday from my friends. Up until then I’d spent so long searching for the perfect nude and then this magically turned up in my lap. It’s a warm toned nude with a matte finish that looks cracking over the top of any nude-y lip liner. This was my go-to for ages and  reminds me so much of my second year at uni. It’s still probably my most worn lipstick.

The Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector. If ever there was maybe too much hype around a product this was it. I’d waited for so long before I took the plunge and bought one. It was with money I’d got from my 21st birthday and I had some time to kill before I was meeting my friends for a birthday surprise (afternoon tea at Browns, yes, yes, yes!) and I bobbed into town to splash the cash. I’d heard so many good things about this product; it’s the perfect gloss, the most moisturising thing you’ll ever have on your lips, etc. But I have to say I was pretty disappointed – I just found it too thick and sticky. Even though I wasn’t a fan of this product, I had the best time that day so I like to keep it as a littl reminder.

A couple of years ago for my 21st birthday, my mum, dad and me went to London. We had the best time there seeing the sights and having a wander round. One disaster that happened when we were there was that we only just made our slot to go up the Shard by minutes (you’re allowed 30 minutes over your booked time, we were 25). The reason we were running late and had to run from St Paul’s Cathedral to the Shard (it feels like miles) was that I was desperate to get my hands on the Urban Decay All Nighter Foundation. I’d been to every department store and shop possible to get my hands on this but they were sold out of my shade everywhere, it was a joke, But finally a very helpful House of Fraser answered all of my prayers! That was such a memorable day and there was so much hunting for a foundation which, I’m sad to say, I can’t get on with. I just find it too thick and hard to blend but it gave us a great story to tell!

When Fleur de Force released her makeup collection on Feel Unique I was there with the items in my basket and checked out before you could even say’good god get a grip girl’. I went for her Cosmic Bronze palette and one of her glosses. I ended up getting so much wear out of the palette and it reminds me of my third year at uni because it’s pretty much all I wore with some winged liner and a questionably strong brow. The thing that I remember most about this product is that I ordered it on a Thursday, it didn’t come until the Thursday after at which point I’d gone back to uni (on that day – how annoying!) and had to wait for it to be posted from home to Nottingham which took nearly another week so by the time it reached me I was desperate for it. No wonder I ended up loving it so much!

What’s your favourite makeup memory?

A Day in the Life of my Face

A slightly different post today where I’m going to show a pretty busy day where my face went through a bit of a thrashing and how my face, and the products that were on it, coped. So sit back, relax and enjoy!

8:30am: Wake up, or struggle to wake up. Turn on the light, put a video on my laptop and check my forehead to see how oily it got in the night (yes really, that’s a thing).
8:45am: Skincare time! I splash a bit of water on my face and then delve into my products, which you can read about in more detail here.
9:00am: Now it’s time to apply the face that is meant to last for the rest of the day, no pressure products!

  • A mix of the Makeup Forever Mattifying Primer and the L’Oreal Lasting Perfection Primer
  • L’Oreal Infallible 24 Hour Matte Foundation in Porcelain 
  • Mac Pro Longwear Concealer in NC15, Maybelline Age Rewind Concealer in Light and the L’Oreal True Match Highlighting Concealer in Ivory Beige
  • Bourjois Healthy Balance Powder in Vanilla
  • A combination of the Soap and Glory Brow Archery in Hot Chocolate and the Maybelline Brow Drama in Medium Brown
  • Mac Painterly Paint Pot to prime my eyes
  • Charlotte Tilbury Dolce Vita Palette (Prime shade all over the lid and in the inner corner, Enhance in the crease and Smoke in the outer corner and under the eye)
  • L’Oreal Super Liner Perfect Slim in Black
  • Rimmel Kohl Kajal in Jet Black
  • A mix of the Soap and Glory Thick and Fast Mascara and the Tarte Lights Camera Splashes Waterproof Mascara
  • Soap and Glory Solar Powder Bronzer
  • Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in Tipsy
  • Silk Teddy eyeshadow from the Too Faced Natural Eyes Palette as a cheek and brow bone highlight
  • Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick in Sexy Sienna
9:30am: Pack supplies! These are the products I took with me to touch up; Sephora Blotting Paper in Cool Mint, Mini Benefit Porefessional Agent Zero Shine Powder with a mini brush, Rimmel Kohl Kajal and Charlotte Tilbury Sexy Sienna Lipstick.
10:00am-3:00pm: University fun times! A mix of lectures and seminars which don’t put too much strain on my face. I reapplied my lipstick after eating a tuna sandwich for my lunch.
3:00pm: Gym! I’ve been trying to go to the gym at least four times a week so I took advantage of the hour break between lectures and went for a bit of a gym sesh.
3:45pm: This was the time when I did a ‘proper’ touch up. I blotted my face with the blotting papers to get rid of the oil that had built up throughout the day and then powdered to stop any more oil coming through and also to top up my base coverage wise. I then lined my waterline once again as it had all worn away and applied my lipstick for a third and final time, although I had to wipe it off and then reapply because to be honest it was still pretty much all in tact on my lips.
5:00pm: End of the uni day! I was meeting my dad for tea because he was passing Nottingham so before he arrived I went and did a quick shop in Primark and Marks and Spencers. 
6:00pm: Tea! We went for a bite to eat at Loch Fyne (more on the meal in tomorrow’s post) and it was amazing! 
8:00pm: END OF THE DAY! So here’s what I thought about the products and how they performed on my face.
Both of the primers seemed to do a good job at keeping my makeup on but I think that the foundation helped. The formula is very long lasting but not overly drying so at the end of the day it was still on my face but didn’t make it look dry or caky. The concealer did pretty well too as my dark circles and spots didn’t seem too visible at the end of the day either. Bronzer, blusher and highlighter were long gone but that was to be expected. My eyeshadow was still on but I could that my eyelids were beginning to get a little oily, eyeliner on the other hand was just as winged as when I put it on, I was very impressed! Although I love the Charlotte Tilbury lipstick towards the end of the day my lips were beginning to dry out and the lipstick had become a little caky. But my lips are always dry and 12 hours is a long time to wear a matte lipstick, however non-drying the formula. I always find that my brows get better and better throughout the day so they were still on my face at the end of the day. Overall, all of these products did a great job at staying on my face and if I had to recommend one amazing long-lasting product I’d go for the L’Oreal Super Liner in Perfect Slim simply because of how amazingly long it lasted!

The Tan for the People that Never Fake Tan

When I go out with my friends I’m always the one that looks a little bit ill on the end. Casper the ghost if you will. It’s my own fault, I’ve just never had the interest to ‘tan up’. I knew that if I did give it a go I’d be patchy, stink of biscuit and end up wearing it on the rainiest day of the year and it would all wash off anyway. My view did change this Christmas though when in my amazing Soap and Glory hamper set thing there was this. The Soap and Glory Righteous Butter Instant Sunkissed Tint Body Lotion. That has to be the longest name in the world! I wasn’t sure what it was going to be like and I was a bit sceptical at first. I’d describe it as a cross between an instant tan and a gradual tan. It is definitely instant as as soon as it comes out of the tube it looks like you’re rubbing melted chocolate on your body. I find that it takes a lot of rubbing in, and the first time I applied it I was terrified it was going to leave me with giant streaks. What I love about this product is that it doesn’t smell, at all! I thought that it might have a bit of a whiff after a while but even the next day there was nothing. It also washes like an absolute dream! What I would say about this for the fake tan newb like me is as soon as you’ve rubbed it into your skin, run to the bathroom, grab an exfoliator and rub the orange right off your hands. You need an exfoliator because it takes some hard core stuff to get it off your hands. So if you’re a fake tan virgin but want a bit of a glow I would definitely recommend getting this. It’s £8.00 at Boots and I can see this tube lasting me for quite a while!

What’s in my Shower

I was the luckiest girl this Christmas and I got SO many bath type products. I’ve never had so many at one time before and to say I was excited to try them all out was an understated. My first thought was “I can be that person that chooses what scrub, moisturiser and shower gel to use depending on what their feeling!”. Yeah, that was my very first thought. But this has made me realise that I have a huge love for pampering products and enjoy having a good shower/ bath. Because I’m at uni, and uni accommodation tends not to have baths, I thought I’d let you into my shower and show you the products I use and my thoughts on them. So let’s dive in!

Aussie

The Aussie shampoo and conditioner range is one that I love and don’t think I would ever change up. If you’ve never smelt the wonderful products then I’d definitely recommend it, they leave you hair smelling like a tropical dream all day and even when you can’t smell it anymore, other people can so you may attract more friends, or not. The Miracle Moist range is my favourite as I feel like it cleans my hair deeply and you can get a good lather with it, which I always like. the 3 Minute Miracle is something I’ve used for a while and it’s something that my hair really likes. I run it through the ends of my hair and leave it on for 3 minutes (what a surprise) then wash and and kind of brush through my hair with my fingers to make sure it’s all gone. Aussie products are normally on offer in Boots, Superdrug or most supermarkets.

The Body Shop

I love The Body Shop and I got very excited when I saw that I had got two products from their Spa of the World range for Christmas. So luxurious! The African Ximenia Scrub is really good is you want something that will still scrub but isn’t too abrasive. There are tiny scrubby bits so it gives you an all over rub and it also gives your legs a good moisturise. You don’t need too much so I have a feeling that this tub is going to last me for a really long time. The Frozen Plum scent is my new favourite from the Body Shop so I was excited when I received that Frozen Plum Shower Gel. It gets up a good lather and smells amazing! Body Shop shower gels always last a long time so I’m going to enjoy using this for a while!

Soap and Glory

I’m having a big Soap and Glory moment so there’s a few of these products that I’m using lately. The Smoothie Star scent will always be one of my favourites and the Smoothie Star Scrub is great for getting rid of any dead skin. The smell is sweet and it’s a sugar scrub so it’s pretty abrasive which is sometimes just what you need. Another scrub on the other end of the abrasive spectrum is the Scrub of our Life. This has bead type things in them which gives a more gentle scrub. I’ve been using this everyday to keep on top of my legs to keep them smooth. It’s in the original Soap and Glory Scent and I love using it. Something else in the original scent is the Clean on Me Shower Gel. I love their giant pump shower gels, they last for ages, dispense the right amount of product and lather up nicely. My go to winter shower gel is the Whipped Clean which is also in the sweet Smoothie Star scent. It’s so thick and luxurious, lathers up amazingly and is the best thing I’ve ever used when shaving my legs, it moisturises so well!

The Regrets

Now, this is a post dedicated to those times where you buy something that’s quite hyped and your really excited to get it but it just doesn’t work out. This doesn’t happen very often but when it does I can’t help feeling a little bit sad, especially when other people seem to love it. First up is the Tanya Burr Lipgloss in First Date. I was really excited when this range was brought out and was ready and raring to go when my Superdrug started stocking it. I bought two shades, this one and Champagne Toast which I really like. However, this shade does not apply well on the lips. I can’t seem to make it work, it goes all streaky and when I press my lips together they stick and I have to prise them apart. I don’t know whether anyone else had this problem but it felt like such a waste of money, which is a real shame because I think the other shades are fine. One of the first felt tip eyeliners that was released back in the day was the Barry M Wink. I mean what could be better and easier to apply eyeliner than a felt tip pen instead of a brush. When I first bought it I struggled to use it but I never thought anything of it because it was so ‘revolutionary’, but looking back the tip was so thick like an actual colouring in felt tip that there was no way of making it work. Since I’ve been introduced to the likes of the L’Oreal Super Liner this has been reserved for fancy dress makeup only. One of my impulse buys that didn’t go to plan was the Makeup Revolution eyeshadow in Dirty Cash. It was only £1 and my logic was it was too cheap not to get. I didn’t even have to pay, I used my Superdrug points. The problem is the colour, it’s awful. When I use it on the eyes it just looks dirty. There’s nothing wrong with the pigmentation or the quality for the price it’s just the colour. Last but not least is the Benefit They’re Real Push-Up Liner. This little mini came free with Elle magazine a few months ago and even though I knew it had mixed reviews I wanted to try it anyway. There’s no denying that this product stays put but I just couldn’t use it. The whole squeeze and swipe did not work and it turned into a smudgy mess. Hopefully I don’t do this type of post again in the future but sometimes it doesn’t work out and it can’t be helped.