Glycolic Fix Night Pads Extreme, Nip+Fab
These are an old favourite of mine, they were the first acid toning pads I ever used and I still use them a lot. Wouldn’t call them extreme though, but if you’re a first time user of acid (lol) then you’ll see a really great difference in your skin. But in comparison to other acid toners, this is actually a pretty gentle one. Hence, I use them AM and PM and several times a week. Tip: cut them in half to prolong use, I usually find that half a pad covers my face plentiful. They contain 5% glycolic (same as Pixi Glow Tonic), but also contain salicylic and lactic, as well as niacinamide. I find these give glow to my skin as well as improving skin texture and breakouts. The first time I ever used them I woke up the next morning and was thrilled – a good acid toner does great things to the skin. These are a great affordable option, they’re priced at £14.95 normally but I’ve never bought them at that price. They are on 2 for 1 and half price at Superdrug on a pretty regular basis, so look out for that.
Spot Concentrated Treatment, Merumaya
Now here’s the thing about ‘spot treatments’. They are designed to dry out the spot, so go easy with them. This one by Merumaya is a pretty standard spot treatment and it does the job, when used right it works. It contains alcohol, salicylic acid and witch hazel – all classic ingredients for these kinds of products. They are DRYING when applied too much. What a lot of us do, me included, is use them incorrectly. Do not, whilst shaking my head at myself two months ago, look at that ugly spot and think ‘I’ll apply this several times a day until the spot goes away’. It won’t. Applying too much dry and not enough moisture and oil will make the spot dry up for sure, but it will leave a lovely big dry patch which will go crusty and horrible and leave a good scar. Save yourself the trouble and apply the treatment only once or twice a day, and put a nourishing oil or moisturiser over the top. The spot with receive the benefits of the ingredients for the spot treatment whilst looking after it. Do not punish it, it will beat you. £14.50 from Merumaya
Intense Moisture Mask, Una Brennan Superfacialist
Sadly, this product is now discontinued. But i bought it a while ago and hadn’t got round to using it since recently. I really like it. This is just great for an immediate boost of hydration. My skin feels plump and soft after I’ve washed it off, and unfortunately my tube is almost empty now. How selfish of me to even mention it ! It was £8.99.
Moisture Balancing Lotion, January Labs
This is a really good light moisturiser. It contains different plant oils which don’t break me out, instead just nourishing my skin. It doesn’t feel heavy at all, and sits well under makeup. The shea butter is far enough down the ingredients list to not be a problem for me. This is a well performing moisturiser for such a reasonable price. £21.00 for 60ml from Cult Beauty. I will be repurchasing once I’ve finished it.
Angled Crease Brush, EcoTools
This was a first time buy from EcoTools for me, I got this little brush in an eye-makeup brush set. It’s soft and it does the job, I’ve been using it for all over application as well as smudging colour. I’m mentioning it because I just think it’s so cute and tiny. The set cost me £7.99 from Superdrug for 5 brushes, I must say that 2 of the brushes in the set are pretty useless and I know I won’t use, but for the price and the quality of the brushes I can’t complain.
Got It Covered Concealer, Lottie London
This is a new-ish high street brand to come to the UK. I like this as an affordable concealer, it feels creamy and sits well on the skin. I have the palest shade which is a pale yellow, and although it goes on looking pale it does turn darker. To be honest, most high street concealers tend to oxidize, so bear that in mind if you are considering buying it. The shade range isn’t good, which is typical considering that most high street brands just aren’t shade inclusive. And by that, I mean they don’t go dark. That being said, it was £4.95 for 8ml, and this is a pretty good performing cheap concealer. No mineral oil, but quite siliconey. I don’t apply just to spots or else the colour contrast to my skin shade does not translate well. Available at Superdrug and online.
Lash Alert Natural Mascara, Lily Lolo
I love this. Proper thick brush and dispenses product well. Builds up very well, I can go heavy with this or just one coat and it looks great. I find this lasts well, bearing in mind I only apply mascara to the top lashes. Also, mascara is a pretty personal thing but this is one I would strongly recommend. Because of the natural formula, once you’ve opened the tube it won’t last as long as some. This is fine for me as I only use one mascara for 4 months maximum and then throw it away, so it didn’t dry up for me. Another thing I would recommend is throwing away your mascara every 4 months. Let’s be honest, do you really need more than one mascara at a time? I learnt the hard way of wearing an oldish mascara once in a while and wondering why I got conjunctivitis after big nights out….. This is £12.50 for 7ml, available from Naturisimo.
Liquid Velvet Lipstick, Ciate
I bought their makeup advent calendar last month (more on that in a moment), and it came with three mini’s of their liquid lipsticks. This is a very comfortable wearing lip product, it doesn’t dry down or go matte like some others do (Sleek’s one for instance), but I prefer this. As a result this has more slip and does not last as long, which I don’t mind because I like to reapply. In the set, I didn’t like wearing any of the shades by themselves, so i just mixed them together on the back of my hand to make a lovely browny-red shade. I’ve been wearing it so much, I love the colours mixed together. Individual full size liquid lipsticks cost £17 for 6.5ml.
A note on their advent calendar: I bought it because it felt like a good deal to get so many products, at a much cheaper price in February, of course. And that is true, however some of the products are so small that they don’t actually come in their real packaging, just a plastic box – which doesn’t make them very practical. Also, as soon as I got the box I was shocked at how much cardboard these advent calendars come in and it seemed very wasteful. I don’t like the commercial nature of these sets, in that you don’t actually get much choice of what comes in them and at full price they are pretty expensive. Plus, that Christmas is now treated as ‘you need lots of stuff NOW’!
So far, I am really impressed with Glossier’s makeup. (Not so much their skincare). This powder comes in great, practical packaging – the fine powder doesn’t go everywhere or make the product messy. I think it works with whatever brush I’ve used, I didn’t buy their special brush. This won’t give you much coverage per say, but instead will just tone down any shiny skin. I like it, the shade range is pretty good too. It’s reasonably priced I would say, and I’ve been using it every time I wear makeup. It’s £18 for 7.2g.
The Picture of Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde
This is a massively popular gothic novel, and it’s written in a period of literature that I really enjoy so I looked forward to reading this for university. It encapsulates romanticism and literature of the fin de siecle, and it felt really dark – which I liked a lot. The main character is so abhorrent, that reading him is actually really enjoyable. The last novel I read quite similar to this one was Dr Jekyll and My Hyde, which I didn’t enjoy that much because I didn’t like how the narration was so separate from the eponymous characters and the plot. It contains lots of letters, which in this case left me feeling really removed from the story. Dorian Gray however, is narrated in a way I much prefer, this is a book that I can see myself reading again.
Phases, Angel Olsen
I love Angel Olsen, and her newest album is no disappointment. I like the first three tracks in particular. This is music for lying down in bed and staring at the ceiling. It’s a collection of demos and old recordings of hers, so it’s not a cohesive album. But I like this, every song sounds fresh and new. Lovely vocals with pared down instrumentation.
Dear Annie, Rejjie Snow
Egyptian Luvr, and Pink Lemonade are highlights, this Irish rapper is really talented me thinks.
You Were Never Really Here
Fucking amazing film. Best film I’ve seen in ages, at the end I felt like there wasn’t enough of it. Lynne Ramsay also did We Need to Talk About Kevin, and in the same way the themes are dark and harrowing. I’m lucky to have been able to see it, as it was only on at my local arty film house (the Watershed in Bristol) for a couple of weeks. A film with not much dialogue, but instead really good cinematography which felt pretty intense at times. Go and see it if you can.
Thanks for reading x
Disclaimer: No ads, all of this is just my own thoughts.