I can’t believe it’s already December! We’ve started our advent calendars, the first lot of decorations have been put up and it’s finally feeling properly Christmassy even if the weather isn’t. This yea I’m going to do the daily advent calendar opening like I have the past few years but I’ve also found a list of 25 questions that I’m going to answer each day. It’s from Pinterest so I can’t save the picture and the site keeps saying it doesn’t exist but it’s from peanutbutterJenny.com and apparently from 2012 so it’s not new, I’ll have to make a new graphic to show the questions and add it in here some time.
Anyway, the advent calendars I’ll be posting about are the Holland and Barrett 25 Days of Cleaner Beauty and the Harry Potter Funko Pop one. I do have the Holland and Barrett Organic Herbal Tea one and I’ll review those if I’ve actually drunk it when I post but might not do that one every day. If you want to find out what was behind door number 1 on each of them then keep reading!
I’ve always loved mini things and I love Lego so of course I had to get some mini Lego style blocks at some point. I’ve got the Piza set from Nanoblocks and have seen the Loz Diamond Blocks sets around but always thought they would be poor quality compared to them. After spending ages trying to find a reasonably priced Pokemon set of definitely genuine Nanoblocks I gave up and my curiosity got the better of me so I bought these two sets on Amazon when I was making a Black Friday order.
I did plan on getting Bulbasaur too but he wasn’t fulfilled by Amazon and the postage was as much as the set so he’ll have to wait. But I did get a Squirtle and a Charmander. These were both £6 and a quick search will find a lot of places selling them so take your pick, though apparently there are even fake Loz bricks out there.
It’s unusual for me doing two reviews in a row from the same company but I’ve been trying out the Smashbox Cover Shot Eyeshadow Palette in Ablaze and I wanted to share what I thought as I’m really enjoying it. I recently got a set from Boots that had this in but this costs £24 individually and contains eight eyeshadows. In the Ablaze palette these are all reds and oranges with a couple of more everyday colours mixed in to make it more usable on its own.
It’s on the small side for a palette, it fits perfectly in the palm of my hand, which makes it great for travel, and I’ve always found the lenticular print on the front of the Cover Shots nice looking. I think I’ve just loved this style of graphic since I was little. It has two larger pans, one matte and one shimmer, and six smaller pans, two matte and four shimmer though one of the shimmers is more a matte base with shimmer in it, and they’re definitely all warm colours.
Smashbox was one of the companies that I had on my to try list for this year. It may be near the end of 2018 but I recently got a set on offer in Boots so I’ve been trying the products that came in it, including this Travel Size Photo Finish Primer Water. This is a 30ml spray bottle that costs £12, though there is a larger 116ml version you can buy for £22 so it’s cheaper per ml but I do love these travel size bottles as they’re great to throw into a bag, plus it’s a great way to try a product if you’re not sure if you’ll like it.
Seeing that it said it’s a primer water I was expecting it to be one of those spray on primers but it’s actually also a setting spray or recommended for use as a bit of a pick my up in the middle of the day to refresh you and your makeup.
I do love a good Primark shopping trip, but the ones near me aren’t really the best when it comes to the homeware department, we normally get everything well after it’s been off the shelves (the Chip mugs appeared about six months later at full price) so I was very happy to see some of the Christmas decorations there that I thought would have missed us.
They had a decent amount of the Harry Potter Christmas decorations along with some of the Disney themed sets of two and quite a lot of the decorations that aren’t a collaboration or licensed products from someone else. I could have spent a lot more but I was good… ish.
This year I planned on getting a couple of advent calendars, one was going to be the Marks and Spencer’s Beauty Advent calendar, the other was probably going to be the cheapest of the three Body Shop ones. However, I managed to write down the wrong date for the M&S one so missed out on it and the Body Shop one was sold out by the time I had the room in my budget so I’ve been having a look around at some and actually will have four within my budget for two (I have one on the way which I will link to at the end as well). I did plan on getting the NYX one too, which may sneak into a basket if it goes on offer but I don’t really need the extra makeup even if the colours do look gorgeous!
I think this year will be the biggest variety in advent calendars I have ever had, it pretty much covers most of the things I like and they aren’t even really linked in any way. The first is from Funko Pop and is one I found by accident and had to get when I saw it was in stock, the second is a beauty advent calendar that was better than half price and has some amazing products in but it’s not one I’ve seen any posts on in advent calendar round ups, and the final one I have with me is full of tea! The fourth is Christmas decorations for the tree and I just love the style of them, plus I did originally decide to get it before I found any of the others and I just wanted an advent calendar.
Earlier this year I was on the lookout for a new concealer, I ended up with two from the Makeup Revolution group and have been trying this one alternately with with the Obsession concealer I reviewed in October. I wanted to give this Makeup Revolution London Conceal and Define concealer more of a go as I’ve heard it being compared to Shape Tape and some great things about it. It’s also vegan and cruelty free.
It has a range of 18 shades and I chose C1, which I think is the lightest in the cool range, though there’s a 0.5 for warmer skin tones and a pure white. I’m normally the lightest shade in any makeup range but this one is definitely a bit lighter than I’d normally go for in a concealer and I’ve been using it a bit as a combination highlight and concealer for the area under my eye. It costs £4 for the 4g tube, though it’s recently been on Beauty Bay for £2.79 and they have some shades left, just not this one.
I recently got a bottle of the Cinders Shower Gel from the Lush limited edition Christmas range. It’s a more creamy formula that’s supposed to be moisturising and skin softening with maple syrup in it and the scent is described as Brazilian orange oil, ginger, nutmeg and allspice powders. This sounded like a great mix to me with a hint of the spices I like in winter products.
As with their other shower gels this is available in three sizes; 110g (£5.50), 260g (£10.95) and 520g (£18.25). It’s a self preserving formula, which I have found tends to make them good ones to keep if you like the scent. I was half expecting this to be like the shower creams that Lush released, which were a nice thick consistency to start with but turned to water after two uses, so had to give them a proper try and use them a lot to see how well they kept. So far it’s been good but it’s only been a month so I can’t comment on the long term stashability of them yet.
I don’t remember Soap and Glory doing a festive limited edition scent before, and being a fan of their products I had to try the Naughty But Spice scent collection. It comes in two gift sets, the smaller Naughty But Spice Duo for £5 with a mini body wash (75ml) and body butter (50ml), and the larger Naughty But Spice Collection for £14 with a 250ml body wash, 200ml body butter and standard 100ml body spray. These are also both in the 3 for 2 Christmas gift offer at Boots.
As far as I can see the Naught But Spice scent is only available in the three product types and in these two sets, unless they’re planning on releasing singles. It’s sold as “fabulous floriental scent-sation that smells good enough to eat! With notes of baked plum and cinnamon.” As a fan of plum scents and spicier smells in the cooler months I had to try it. I decided to get the smaller set to try and if I love it the larger one can go on my Christmas list.
This wasn’t going to be my original post for today, but as it says this set is limited edition and it seems to be out of stock online already I wanted to put this up so you might be able to find it in a Boots near you. This is a sort of first impressions or look at what’s inside the Smashbox Superstars Box that’s on sale in Boots for £30 and has £88.50 worth of products in it. I have to admit I was sceptical about whether it was truly worth that much but I’ve put the links to each of them individually and it does add up.
Smashbox is one of those brands that seems expensive, or more expensive than I’d often spend on the products I’ve been interested in trying from them. However, they seem to get such good reviews they were one of the brands I put on my to try list this year so when I saw this set I had to get it. It’s supposed to contain some of their best selling products, with a Cover Shot Eyeshadow Palette in Ablaze, Light Photo Finish Primer, Photo Finish Primer Water, SuperFan Mascara and their Contour Shadow Brush. I do have a weakness for brushes and have wanted to try one of theirs for a while but £20 for one brush was a bit out of what I spend on them, maybe this one will convert me.