I feel like I should start by saying sorry for not posting as often recently. I will admit that the huge dip in views since actually paying for this blog was a bit discouraging, going from nearly 300 a day every day to under 100 a day did not feel good, but you guys are awesome and I’ve loved the fact that I’m actually getting more comments than ever, so many more, and I’m actually having conversations. That probably sounds odd but definitely more important to me than the whole numbers thing. I feel like I should apologise for being a bit awol on here but I do have reasons and within the next few weeks it’ll all be back to normal, I promise.
I’ve tried a few of these Tony Moly I’m Real sheet masks and so far they seem nice enough. I bought the set of sheet masks for around £10 on eBay a while ago and this Aloe Moisturizing Sheet Mask has been sitting waiting to be used. I’m trying to use my face mask stash up by using one a week, I’m not sure how much it has improved my skin but it’s definitely a nice, easy way to have a face mask and these sheet masks are especially refreshing.
This sheet mask is aimed at moisturising and the main natural ingredient for this is Aloe. It seems like it’s one that should also be calming and cooling and would be good for oilier skin too. I know that my skin loves aloe gel when it comes to calming it down after sun burn or a reaction so when I was choosing a face mask in the warmer weather recently it seemed to be the perfect one to try.
It feels a bit like most of my posts recently have been hauls but this is probably the last for a while and one I’ve had planned for ages. I’ve had my eye on a few of the Sleek I-Divine eyeshadow palettes for a while and did plan on buying four, but the main one I actually wanted (Peach Perfect) was out of stock and off the website so I wanted to do this order before the rest disappeared too as they’re all limited editions. There will be proper reviews of these in the fairly near future when I’ve had a chance to play around with them but I wanted to show you guys how pretty they are in case they do a disappearing act too before I have a chance!
In a recent declutter I realised that, although I have many palettes and more than I actually need, I did have some gaps in the colours I had. Last spring I was loving their All the Fun of the Fair palette full of shimmery pastels and I really wanted some more pastels to add to my collection. The Nordic Skies palette was around last year and I thought I’d missed it but it appeared back in stock so I got it along with the Spirit Animal and Dream a Little Dream palettes. I also ended up buying their light eyebrow kit so now I’ve gone from having no eyebrow colour product to two. I’ll have to give it a go and see how it compares to the NYX one I got in my recent HQ Hair Haul and get back to you guys with what I find.
I’ve never really got on with the standard foundation brush, or most of them anyway, as they seem to more push the foundation around than make any of it stick and I always ended up with way more product on my face than I actually wanted. I’ve been loving my beauty blender style sponges but on a recent browse of HQ Hair’s online store I saw the Real Techniques Expert Face Brush £11.99 (£9.59 full price when I bought it) and it intrigued me. It’s supposed to buff the product in and it’s dense but soft so it seems somewhere between a brush and a sponge, at least that’s what I was expecting.
I’ve bought Real Techniques brushes before, one of their eye brushes is the one I use every time I apply makeup, so I knew the quality I’d be getting. The only negative I’ve had for any Real Techniques Brush is how big some of them are, I’ve had so many big fluffy eye brushes I don’t know what to do with them all! I love how they colour coordinate the brushes depending on what they’re meant for, this is a base brush so it has an orange handle, and they’re soft and cruelty free. They are more expensive than a lot of the brushes I’ve bought in the past but they’re worth it to me.
After a recent declutter of my wardrobe I had a list of things I was looking for and I’ve got better at not buying things in sales just because they’re cheap but I did end up getting some things I didn’t have planned on a couple of recent trips to the McArthur Glen Outlet shopping centre in Bridgend. Everything I bought ended up being from the Next Outlet, they have had such good bargains recently, £2 for a good quality top or £10 for some jeans is such a good price if they’re what you want. For years I didn’t get that much from Next but it feels a bit like half of my go to wardrobe comes from there.
The Next Outlet stores often have extra reductions, which is what happened with most of the things I’ve bought, beyond the reductions in the normal sales. They also have older stock in lots of sizes sometimes as well as a range of clothes that are exclusive to the Outlet stores in the Special Purchase range. I know some people have said they aren’t the same quality as the standard line, they’re definitely cheaper than equivalents at full price, but I’ve bought quite a few things from them and they last just as well for me.
I’m not sure how popular George Gently as a TV series has been outside the UK but it was a fairly popular series that finished last year. It’s a detective show set in the 60s which revolves around Inspector George Gently (played by Martin Shaw) and his sergeant Bacchus (who isn’t in the books). I’ve loved the show and didn’t realise it was even based on a series of books until recently and, when I saw one in the library, I had to read one and see how it compared.
It seems like a lot of TV shows are based on books and it’s very rare for me to actually like both versions. There are often so many differences that one or the other stands out as better to me, whether it was the first version I saw or not. The main difference here, that I can see from one book anyway, is the lack of Bacchus (played by Lee Ingleby). I had read before finding this book that the character of George Gently himself was very different but I found that I could imagine the TV version when reading this. Maybe because this book is around the twentieth book in the series of forty six (if I’m remembering that number correctly) so he may have mellowed compared to what I’ve read on the character.
This review is about the book, I just thought that it would be worth doing a bit of an introduction including the TV show as that’s how I found the book in the first place and I think it may be the more well known incarnation.
I’ve been doing some decluttering recently, will be doing some posts on that when I’ve given some of the maybes more of a go, and it showed some things I didn’t have that I wanted. It’s one of the dangers of decluttering; it makes you want more! This is only a small haul and I had a 20% off discount because I hadn’t shopped with HQ Hair for a while so I don’t feel so bad.
One of the things I’ve had my eye on since they appeared everywhere last year was a red based eyeshadow palette. The Balm Nude Beach eyeshadow palette may not have quite the same colours as the ABH Modern Renaissance but I love the warm tones and had to get it when I saw it was in the offer. I also was lacking blues and greens in my gel polish collection so got two from Red Carpet Manicure, along with a Real Techniques Face Brush and a mini eyebrow kit from NYX as it really is time I tried to do something with them, even if it’s just to find out I don’t get on with these type products.
A while ago I bought some Secret Key Gold Racoony Hydro Gel Eye and Spot Patches from eBay as I’ve liked under eye gel patches before but they’re so expensive here in the UK. These are a Korean brand and in general cost around £7 – £10 depending on where you get them from. I got them from the f2plus1 eBay store (the eBay store for Beauty Net Korea) and at the moment they’re listed for £8.55.
These eye patches contain gold and claim to be good for refreshing your skin as well as hydrating it and improving elasticity. A lot of these patches with gold in claim to be anti wrinkle and with the amount you get in each tub they’re actually quite a cheap way of treating this if they actually work. Each pot contains 60 of the eye patches, the semi circular shaped pieces, and 30 of the spot patches. You can use them daily if you want and then they’d last a month, but I don’t think they’re something that would be part of my daily routine so a couple of times a week makes them last three or four months.
Mascara is not something I am low on at the moment, especially black mascara, so I’m going through the ones I have and trying them all to see which to keep and which to get rid of. Most of these are sample sizes and this Eyeko Black Magic Mascara is what I’d call a travel size at 4ml so useful for a handbag and big enough to get quite a few uses from. It came in the Marks and Spencer beauty advent calendar last year and you can see my first impressions post here. I’ve not tried much from Eyeko but I’m a fan of their liquid eyeliner pen so I was looking forward to seeing how this mascara compared.
One thing I’ve noticed about this when looking for it online is that there seem to be different brush versions. Some may be bad photographs when showing the shape but they’re available in a skinny and normal brush, both the same price. The full 8ml tube is £16 on QVC UK or £19 from the Marks and Spencer’s website, which seems to be the standard price. It claims to be waterproof and add drama and curl and the standard wand has a curved shape that’s supposed to match the shape of your lashes, which I think is a nice touch but does mean you can only really use it one way.
I have to admit that I’ve not always been a fan of primers as an added step in my beauty routine. I’ve tended not to use one, though one of my favourite foundations is a mix of powder foundation and primer mixer, so when I got the Pür Correcting Illuminate and Glow Primer in the Marks and Spencer’s beauty advent calendar last year I didn’t have high expectations for it. I’ve heard of the brand, I think I may have tried something from them before, and it’s all been good so I did want to give this a proper go.
As it’s an illuminating primer it does have an aspect of shimmer to it, though I’m not sure exactly which of the Illuminate and glow primers it is, they have ones aimed at specific skin colour issues, I think it’s the summer one. It isn’t available in Marks and Spencer’s any more but I did find the full sized 30ml ones in Look Fantastic for £24 and Beauty Bay has the full sized tube for £22.50. There are also a lot of the mini sized 10 ml tubes, like the one I have, floating around on eBay if you want to find one to give it a go.they do also seem to come up as cheaper per ml so it may be worth having a look round on there.