The Staples In My Makeup Bag

Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Staples in my makeup bag

| The Staples In My Makeup Bag! |

New products go in and out of my makeup bag each day but there are a few staples that I can't bear to be without. The easy, effortless products to use are the ones that stand the test of time and remain in my makeup bag for the longest time. Here's a roundup of my everyday staples!

For many years I skipped using a primer because I didn't think they did much for my skin. However, since incorporating primers into my routine, my base makeup has never looked better. I have a combination skin type with hormonal acne and my skin often gets quite dry so I like to reach for hydrating primers that make my skin smooth. The Too Faced Hangover Primer is my primer of choice as the lightweight hydrating cream adds hydration without making my skin greasy. 

The all-in-one palette:
Multi-purpose palettes are becoming increasingly popular and I'm so happy to see more brands launching these types of palettes. They usually come with a number of complexion powders in them and some brands even have palettes with both complexion powders and a few eyeshadows. 

I bought my first all-in-one palette, the Pippa Palette by Blank Canvas, around 3 years ago and it's still a firm favourite in my makeup collection. The pretty pink palette houses a blush, bronzer, highlighter and six neutral matte eyeshadows. It contains a lot of products I need to complete my everyday makeup look and it's handy to have everything in the one palette as I don't have to rummage through my drawers at 7 in the morning for various products. 

Another multi-purpose palette that's always in my makeup bag is the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Volume 3. This stunning rose gold palette houses six complexion powders including two setting powders, a highlighter, a bronzer and two blushes. The formula of Hourglass powders never fails to revive tired, dull looking skin with their radiant properties. 

Cream eyeshadow:
Cream eyeshadows are another time-saving, effortless product to use on a daily basis. My favourite cream eyeshadow is the Charlotte Tilbury Eyes To Mesmerise in Jean which is a beautiful champagne hue. The texture of this is a lot creamier and you can tell it's more luxurious than some of my other budget cream eyeshadows. 

Nude lip liner:
It's no secret that I don a nude lip on a daily basis and I can't go a day without lip liner. My favourites are Mac Soar, Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk, L.O.V Cosmetics lip pencil in no.502* {review} and a new favourite that I've discovered is Mac Dervish. Soar and Pillow Talk are similar shades but I do prefer the CT formula a little bit more as it's slightly creamier and it lasts a little bit longer too. Dervish doesn't have as much pigmentation as the other two but it's perfect if you want to wear a lighter nude shade. Despite the L.O.V liner's budget price tag, it's actually the longest lasting liner out of the bunch. 

What are your makeup bag staples?

Cliona xx

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An Everyday Lip Combination

Sunday, 28 January 2018

an everyday lip combination

| An Everyday Lip Combination! |

My everyday makeup routine follows a similar pattern; Soft natural eyeshadow, luminous highlighted skin, a light foundation with my freckles peeping through and finally, a nude lip. I've tried lots of different lipstick formulas and various different shades but recently, I've found a new lip combination that's perfect for my everyday makeup look.

Most days lining my lips is an essential step in my routine, as I have relatively small lips and I think lipstick just looks a lot nicer on me when paired with a liner. My current favourite is Mac Dervish, a brownish nude shade, a 'my lips but better' kind of shade. I love the formula of Mac lip liners but one thing I've noticed with this particular shade is that it's not as smooth and creamy as some of the other shades. Nonetheless, it's a great shade, that's easy to wear and I find it lasts for a good five-six hours.  

Secondly, I apply one of my all-time favourite nude lipsticks: Nars Velvet Matte lip pencil in Sex Machine, a pink-toned mauve nude.This shade was my first Nars lipstick so it'll always be a sentimental product in my collection. The velvet matte lip pencils are my favourite matte formula as they're non-drying.

And lastly, I apply my Luna by Lisa lip gloss in Sapphire on top for a glossy finish that gives my lips a juicy, luscious look. This particular shade is just a classic pinky nude hue that complements most nude lipsticks and the formula is incredible - Non-sticky and very pigmented! 

Pairing these together gives an end result of plump, luscious looking lips and the combination is long-lasting. I find that the lip gloss fades after about 2 hours, especially if I've been eating or drinking. However, the lipstick and lip liner still looks perfect even after the lip gloss has completely worn down, and I usually get another three to four hours wear, depending on how often I'm eating/drinking each day.

An everyday lip combination

What's your favourite everyday lipstick?

Cliona xx

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My 2018 Beauty Goals & Wish List

Wednesday, 24 January 2018

2018 beauty wish list

| My 2018 Beauty Goals & Wish List! |

Every year I set myself a couple of achievable goals and some of those goals are always beauty related. I was reading Kelsey's post and Anna's post about their beauty resolutions and their posts inspired me to share my beauty goals. I also thought I could share some of the brands/products I want to try this year as I did a similar post last year, so I decided to merge the two ideas together for today's post. Without further ado, here are my 2018 beauty goals and a look at my current wishlist!

Cream Products:
After trying the Fenty Beauty Match Stix, I've fallen in love with cream blush formulas so this year I want to try more cream blush, bronzer and highlighter products. Top of my wishlist is the Charlotte Tilbury Beauty Light Wand and as I'm writing this, I'm thinking of buying it so I may already own it by the time you see this post. I also have my eye on the Charlotte Tilbury Contour Wand but it looks a little bit daunting so I'm going to trial a few more cream formulas before I splurge on it. 

Another cream product that I'd like to try this year is the Hourglass Illume Sheer Colour Trio. This little palette houses a cream blush, bronzer and highlighter and it looks like it would be an amazing product for the Summer.

Speaking of cream formulas, Glossier has some great cream blush and highlighter options. I've been dying to try this brand for a couple of years now and sadly, we still can't get it in Ireland yet. You can use An Post AddressPal to ship the products here but it seems a little complicated but I'm definitely going to look into it because I'd love to try some Glossier products this year!

If I do end up making an order, I think I'll get the phase one set which contains the Milky Jelly cleanser, balm dot com and the priming moisturiser. I also like the sound of their new product, Solution as well as boy brow and their famous cloud paints

Last year one of my goals was to invest more time and money into skincare. I wanted to learn more about my skin's needs and invest in good quality products. I did learn a little bit about my skin and what ingredients I should/shouldn't be using but I could definitely do better this year. 

I've been researching masks a lot recently and at the moment I'm thinking of purchasing the Origins Original Skin retexturising maskGlow Recipe Watermelon mask, Farmacy Honey Potion and Kiehl's Turmeric & Cranberry Seed mask are also on my list to try! 

I've wanted to try Drunk Elephant skincare products for a while - their packaging is dreamy! - and word on the street is they're coming to SpaceNK this year so hopefully, I'll be able to make an order!

Charlotte Tilbury:
Recently, I've been binge watching all of Charlotte Tilbury's youtube videos {how have I only just discovered her channel now?!} and her tutorials are incredible! What I love about her looks is that they're soft and easy to achieve. She creates all types of looks from everyday minimal makeup to more statement looks, but they're always simple to achieve. 

Watching her videos has not only inspired me to create a few new makeup looks, but they've also made my wish list longer *insert the monkey with his hands over his mouth emoji* I'm currently lusting after another one of her Eyes To Mesmerise eyeshadows - I already have Jean but next on my list to try is Bette. I'd also love to try her Instant Look In A Palette as well as the Airbrush Flawless Finish powder.

Have you any beauty goals for this year?

And is there anything on your wish list at the moment?

Cliona xx

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My Top Beauty Purchases

Sunday, 21 January 2018

My top beauty purchases

| My Top Beauty Purchases! |

We all have a guilty pleasure in life and beauty products are my weakness *insert the see-no-evil monkey emoji* I love trying out new launches and cult favourites, but over the years I've curated a little stash of my favourite products, the most used products in my collection and the ones that I always repurchase. Without further ado, here are my top beauty purchases!

I discovered La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo + back in 2014 and I've lost track of how many times I've repurchased it! It's been my go-to for treating breakouts ever since as it's the best product I've tried for healing breakouts. It's not a miracle worker, it doesn't get rid of every single blemish but it does gently heal most of my spots. I have a lot of scarring from years of hormonal acne and whilst this product helps reduce scarring a little, I don't think it's the best product for targeting it. However, I notice a huge difference in my skin when I don't use it so I'd be lost without it!

I've loved the Clinique Moisture Surge moisturiser since I was 18 as it provides a great amount of hydration to the skin and my skin always feels so soft when I use it. It's fragrance-free which is ideal for my sensitive skin and it has a lightweight gel texture so it's nice to use before makeup application. Definitely the best moisturiser I've tried!

My top beauty purchases

My top mascara purchase of all time is the Maybelline Lash Sensational mascara. This affordable gem provides incredible results and really transforms my lashes, adding length and volume without any smudging or flaking. 

Recently, I repurchased my favourite concealer ever, Urban Decay Naked Skin concealer and I'm so glad to have it back in my life! The creamy formula is perfect for dry skin, the shade fair neutral brightens up my under eye area, giving my complexion a healthy appearance and what I love most about it is that it feels incredibly lightweight on the skin - There's nothing worse than a heavy, cakey concealer! 

My Charlotte Tilbury lipsticks are my favourite luxury purchase. I have the shades Kidman's Kiss {Review}, a peachy pink hue that's perfect for Spring/Summer and Bitch Perfect {Review}, a pinky nude shade which is my favourite everyday lipstick.

My favourite brand of nail polishes is Essie and whenever I need a new nail polish they're my first port of call. Their nude shades are definitely my favourite that I've tried and my standout shades are Bare With Me, Eternal Optimist and Muchi Muchi - Three pretty nude/pink shades.

What are your top beauty purchases?

Cliona xx

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Three Fragrance Favourites

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Fragrance favourites

| Three Fragrance Favourites! |

If you told me I'd be into perfumes and starting a little collection this day last year I wouldn't have believed you. But fast forward a year, I'm now in my 20's and perfume is something I'm beginning to love. Recently I've added two new perfumes as well as a body mist to my collection so for today's post, I thought I'd share my new additions. 

Weekend Beauty Routine

Sunday, 14 January 2018

Weekend beauty routine

| Weekend Beauty Routine! |

Weekends are my favourite and I like to make the most of my spare time in the mornings to pamper my skin and do my makeup. Today I'm delving into my makeup and skincare drawers and sharing my favourite products to use on weekend mornings.

I'm a morning shower person no matter what day of the week it is, as I find it refreshing and it wakes me up. My after-shower essential is an indulgent body moisturiser and a budget find that's been a firm favourite since last summer is the Garnier Ultimate Blends Body Soothing Hydrating Lotion. Despite the budget price tag, it feels luxurious, smells delicious, is kind to my sensitive skin and leaves my skin feeling soft and smooth.

My facial skincare staples at the moment are from one of my favourite skincare brands, La Roche Posay. I always have their Effaclar Duo + in my skincare routine as it's the only thing that helps reduce the number of spots I get - I even have a backup of it in my skincare drawer, that's how much I love it! I'm also a big fan of their Toleriane Ultra moisturiser - It's a simple fuss-free moisturiser that hydrates my dry parched skin and the formula is quite cooling and soothing too so it's ideal for sensitive skin. 

I've been opting for more minimal makeup recently and for my weekend base, I like to use a luxury product and my Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder foundation is the perfect pick! A lightweight, luminous offering that provides a fresh, natural makeup look. 

Another Charlotte Tilbury favourite is the Filmstar Bronze & Glow palette which houses the most beautiful bronzer and highlighter ever. Both powders look incredible on the skin and they're ideal for my everyday makeup bag.

Recently, I repurchased my all-time favourite concealer after not having it in my makeup routine for a few months - Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer - and I managed to get a really good deal on it as it was reduced from €23 down to €16! The creamy formula suits my dry skin, it can be used for both concealing spots and under the eyes and it lasts well throughout the day on me.

Luna by Lisa lip glosses

I've been testing out a couple of new blushes recently and one that has already made it to my favourites list is the Fenty Beauty Match Stix in Yacht Life. It's a gorgeous pink shade with a golden sheen and it makes my skin look so healthy! I'm loving it and I definitely want to add some more cream or liquid blushes to my collection! 

For the eyes, I'll be reaching for my Charlotte Tilbury Eyes To Mesmerise in Jean - a gorgeous champagne cream eyeshadow! It looks beautiful on its own all over the lid for minimal makeup days and the simple eye look provides a fresh healthy look to my appearance.

And lastly on my makeup menu is the lip products and I'm loving the Luna Lip Gloss in Sapphire at the moment. The formula is incredible - pigmented, creamy and non-sticky! - and this particular shade is a wearable pinky nude. If I want something a little bit longer-lasting then I'll opt for my Clinique Pop Matte Lipstick in Peony Pop

Hair & Fragrance:
On the weekends, I like messy textured hair so I'll be applying a little bit of my Toni & Guy Sea Salt Texturising Spray to my hair for natural tousled locks. 

My final weekend beauty ritual is perfume and I've been saving my Jo Malone Red Roses fragrance for weekend use only. This gorgeous rose scent is getting me excited for the Spring months ahead! 

What are your weekend beauty essentials?

Cliona xx

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My First Products From My Favourite Brands

Wednesday, 10 January 2018

My first products from my favourite brands

| My First Products From My Favourite Brands! |

The first few weeks of the new year are always a time of reflection and for today's post, I'm thinking back to my first purchases from my favourite brands.

My first ever Nars purchase was the Sheer Glow foundation. It's one of my all-time favourite foundations and one I've repurchased a lot over the last four years. It's everything I look for in a foundation - medium coverage, satin finish and ideal for my dry skin.

I had lusted after Hourglass products for a few years before I finally added one of their products to my collection. When I spotted the Surreal Light palette last year I just couldn't resist it and I'm so glad I did because it's one of my most-used products. I love convenient products and this palette has everything you need to complete your base makeup from setting powder to blusher, to bronzer to highlighter. 

I remember the first time I went to Mac and bought my first few products. After swatching nearly every lipstick shade they had, I opted for Modesty - a failsafe cremesheen nude hue which is a great beginner's shade! I also bought a few eyeshadows to start building my own palette and I chose Amber Lights, Swiss Chocolate and Texture. 

Too Faced is renowned for the beautiful packaging and their Hangover primer was the first product I tried from them. The pink packaging is dreamy and the hydrating formula is ideal for my dry skin. It's a step in my makeup routine that I can't miss! 

The hype surrounding Becca Champagne Pop was ubiquitous when it was first released so it was inevitable that I would purchase it. I have no regrets though as it introduced me to the incredible formula of Becca's shimmering skin perfectors - My favourite highlighter formula!

What was your first product from your favourite brand?

Cliona xx

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New Products For The New Year

Sunday, 7 January 2018

| New Products For The New Year! | 

We're a week into the new year and I've been rearranging my beauty stash, putting away old favourites to make room for a few new beauty bits to try. I've been testing out a few products already so for today's post I thought I'd do a little roundup of what's new in my beauty routine and my first impressions of each product.

Every Christmas Eve I treat myself to a little present and this year I opted for the Fenty Beauty Match Stix in Yacht LifeThe pink hue with golden shimmer reminds me of the cult classic Nars Orgasm. I'm not usually a fan of cream blushers but this Winter my skin has become severely dry so I thought I'd ditch some of my powder formulas for a while and see if cream/liquids would be better. I've fallen in love with this formula and it's making me want to try more cream blushers this year. I also love the packaging, it's very clean and minimal whilst also being fun and girly at the same time.

Santa was very generous this year as he left the Luna by Lisa lip gloss set under my tree. The set contains four pink and nude shades that are all very wearable and it costs €30 which is reasonable enough for what you're getting. I'm not usually too fussed about lip glosses - I have a few favourites such as the Sephora own brand lip glosses and the NYX Butter glosses - but the formula of these are incredible! They're very pigmented and creamy {the texture is like a glossy lip cream}, the shades don't apply sheer like a lot of lip glosses and the staying power is pretty decent too. They're definitely worth a try!

One of my presents from my sister was the Revlon Ultra HD Lipcolour in Dawn and so far this creamy hydrating lipstick has been the perfect Winter lip product!

Another new lip addition to my new year makeup bag is Mac's Dervish lip liner. The Mac lip liners are my favourite and this classic nude hue compliments a lot of my lipsticks.

Jo Malone Red Roses

The last makeup product I've been putting to the test recently is the Huda Beauty Mauve Obsessions palette. The internet went crazy for these palettes when they launched recently and I'm so excited to finally have my hands on it! I've used it a couple of times so far and my initial thoughts are that the shades are beautiful and they work really well together. The shadows are also seriously pigmented - definitely, the most pigmented I've ever used - so a light hand is essential for applying them. I applied way too much of the first shade I tried and it took me ages to blend it out so do be careful of that. Once I went in with a lighter hand the next few times, I had no problems with application or blending. 

The most exciting addition to my beauty collection is my first Jo Malone fragrance. I'm so excited about it because up until last year I never had any proper perfumes, I always used body mists because I was just never really into perfumes. But after I tried a few samples of some perfumes I fell in love with them and I'm starting a little collection now. I went for the Red Roses scent which is a sweet floral scent - my favourite kind!

I bought a Clinique Moisture Surge gift set in the post-Christmas sales because it has a full-size of my all-time favourite moisturiser in it. The set also contains one of their chubby stick lip colour balms, a mini Moisture Surge overnight mask as well as a mini hydrating supercharged concentrate. Before I bought the set I bought the Moisture Surge overnight mask so now I have a full size and a mini but I absolutely love the range so it's great to have a backup!

What products would you most like to try this year?

Cliona xx

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Books I Read In 2017

Wednesday, 3 January 2018

| Books I Read In 2017! |

Another year is over and that means it's time for my annual reading roundup post! I did a similar post last year and I loved putting it together. My Goodreads reading goal was to read 35 books in 2017. I didn't end up finishing my goal as life got in the way but I did manage to read 31 books so it was still a great achievement. I'm lowering it to 25 this year because I don't have as much to time to dedicate to reading this year but nonetheless, I'm excited for another great year of reading! Without further ado, let's see what books I read in 2017...

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