Dry Skin Saviours

Sunday 30 April 2017

Recently I've been trialling some new skincare additions alongside my old favourites in an attempt to finally put an end to my dry skin woes, and I'm pleased to say that it's actually working! Right now my skin is the least dry that it has been in years, so I thought I would share my current routine with you. 

Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel 

The Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel remains a firm favourite in my routine, I actually love it so much that I keep spare bottles in the cupboard at all times because I couldn't be without it for one day. It's a gel cleanser that is pink in colour and smells like roses (have I convinced you yet?) When rinsed off it turns milky and leaves a slight residue behind, which I love because it feels soft and moisturising even after it's been removed.  I could write essays on why I love this product, but I recommend you to check it out for yourself, I'm sure you'll fall in love too! 

The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 

Drop everything, this one is a game changer. If you have dry skin and you're reading this post, head over to Beauty Bay and pick up The Ordinary's Hyaluronic acid right now, because this really is a miracle product. Using the eyedropper I apply 1-2 drops of this serum to my fingertips and then I massage it into my whole face morning and night, it looks like water but has the texture of a serum so it's not too difficult to apply. At first this feels really tacky, but as soon as you add another product the sticky feeling goes away, leaving you with plump, soft skin which you won't be able to stop touching. I'm not sure how the science behind this works, but it just seems to make all of my other products work harder, it feels like everything in my routine is contributing towards more moisturised skin, but this is the key that ties it all together. 

Clinique Moisture Surge Moisturiser 

Clinique's Moisture Surge Moisturiser is another old favourite, which I have probably repurchased 10 times by this point. This pink gel based cream feels cooling and soothing when applied to dry skin, and leaves if feeling incredibly soft and hydrated. I have tried so many other moisturisers and nothing has managed to come close to the same level of hydration, so for me it's worth every penny of it's £34 price tag, and a little goes a long way so it lasts for ages! 

Mario Badescu Hydro-Emollient Cream 

When I read that the Hydro Emollient Cream from Mario Badescu is meant for use in flights, I new it would be powerful enough for my severely dry skin. This cream moisturiser is very thick, and very heavy, which is why I only use it at night when my skin really needs the extra hit of hydration. It's not scented and the packaging is very simple, but it packs a serious punch in the moisture department. It does leave a coated feeling behind, so it only really works as a night cream, but I'm really excited to try it on a long haul flight too! 

Kiehl's Creamy Eye Treatment With Avocado

Kiehl's Creamy Eye Treatment With Avocado is not a perfect eye cream for me, but it's the closest I have come to one. It does feel soothing, which is high up my list of priorities when it comes to eye products, and it does hydrate my under eye area, but just not quite enough for my needs. It's worth noting that my under eyes are the driest part of my face, so much so that I can't even apply concealer for fear of it flaking off, but for normal-moderately dry skin types I think this cream will tick all of the boxes. 

Rose Hydrate Moisture Mask by Superfacialist by Una Brennan 

I love everything about the Rose Hydrate Moisture Mask from the Superfacialist brand. It smells like roses which I adore and it feels so creamy and luxurious to apply. I like to leave it on for 10 minutes which is enough time for it to completely transform my skin from dull and tired, to bright and glowy. The effects only really last for a day, so I like to use this twice a week, and luckily it's gentle enough to do so. *I can't find this on the Boots website anymore, I hope it's not discontinued! 

Jurlique Rose Water Balancing Mist 

Now that I finally have my morning and evening routines nailed down, all I needed was something to top up the moisture levels in between ... enter Jurlique's Rosewater Balancing Mist.* I like to spritz this over my face throughout the day and it helps to bring a bit of a dewy look back to my makeup, as well as adding the extra hydration that I need in between moisturising. It's a super fine mist which smells very subtly of roses (are you sensing a theme here?) and comes in a beautiful frosted glass bottle. 

So that's the routine I've been using to heal my dry skin, hopefully with the warmer weather on the way I'll be changing it up a little bit, so I'll be sure to update you again soon! Let me know if you have any more recommendations! 

*PR sample, my review expresses my own honest opinions 

The Ideal World Bloggers Box*

Monday 24 April 2017

A little while ago I received a very exciting email from the TV shopping channel Ideal World, asking if I would like to receive a Bloggers Box* full of some of their favourite beauty products, and of course I said yes! Though I had heard of Ideal World before, I had never associated them with beauty, which now seems crazy because their website is crammed full of skincare and makeup products. I thought I would write up a mini review of the products I received, since some of them seem relatively undiscovered in the blogging world. 

Makeup Eraser
As I opened up the huge box of goodies, The Original Makeup Eraser caught my eye and I let out a squeal of excitement. I have wanted to try this since I saw a demo in one of Nikki's Instagram Stories (if you don't follow her on Instagram you totally should by the way, her stories are hilarious!) It's described as a wash cloth which can remove all traces of makeup with just warm water, and I'm happy to say that it actually works! This little wonder cloth removed almost all evidence of makeup from my face, which was much more than I was expecting, as I wear a very full coverage foundation. Since this is just a wash cloth it doesn't have any moisturising properties, so I wouldn't be using this in place of my Holy Grail Cleanser, Oskia's Renaissance Cleansing Gel, but as a first cleanse I have already swapped out my usual micellar water in favour of it. 

Lip Balm and Lipstick

The first makeup product I opened was this lipstick from the brand Skinn in the shade Carnation. The colour is a gorgeous fuchsia pink, and the actual formula of the lipstick is beautiful, with the moisturising core (which contains Argan and Rosehip oil) ensuring that it isn't at all drying, with an almost balmy finish. 

Another product that I've been really enjoying is the Elizabeth Grant Moisture Stick, which is a lip balm in lipstick packaging - so cute! It's super hydrating and smells very mildly of watermelon, so it ticks all of the boxes for me. 

Collagenesis Lip Stem Rejen Elite
Lip Stem Rejen by Collagenesis is a serum with anti-ageing properties, which you apply around the mouth area and on to your laughter lines to help to reduce the appearance of lines. This product didn't really do anything for me, because thankfully I don't have many lines around my mouth yet, so even though I can hear myself screaming "prevention is the best cure!" from somewhere in my not so distant future, I'm going to give this one to my mum to test. I'll let you know what she thinks! 

Elizabeth Grant Bath and Shower Gel 

How adorable is the packaging of Elizabeth Grant's Graceful Angel shower gel?! It's both pink and sparkly - totally my aesthetic! Packaging asides this is a lovely shower gel which has a beautiful sweet floral scent and lathers up nicely on the skin, which is basically everything I ask for in a shower product. 

Skinn Enriched Softening Essence
Skinn's Enriched Softening Essence is a lotion designed to add an instant hit of moisture to the skin, with a ton of amazing ingredients to help it to do so. I was really excited to try this out because of my dry skin woes, but unfortunately it just can't compete with the new love of my skincare life, The Ordinary's Hyalauronic Acid, to which all other products pale in comparison. I'm definitely going to keep hold of this for when I run out of The Ordinary serum, as it does add an extra hit of hydration, but it's just not quite powerful enough to woo me completely. 

Crystal Clear 10 Minute Glow 

I've wanted to try a peel off mask for such a long time, so I was really happy to discover the Crystal Clear 10 Minute Glow Mask hidden in the box. The only negative of this mask is that it's awful to apply, it's like squeezing out a dollop of superglue and then attempting to spread it around your face - it's quite tricky and sort of disgusting. However, once it begins to dry the formula doesn't feel sticky at all, it's actually a similar sensation to wearing a clay mask where it feels quite tight, but not uncomfortably so. After leaving it on for about 10 minutes (as suggested in the name of the product) I peel it off, which is my favourite part because it brings back memories of being in primary school and PVA glueing my hands. Once I've managed to remove most of it I splash my face with warm water and voila! My skin feels so clean and fresh and is instantly more dewy. It says on the box to use this once a week, so I've been using it as part of my Sunday night pamper, and my skin is already looking much healthier for it. 

Zhuzh Steve Whatley's Tan Accelerator 
I am naturally a very pale person who doesn't tan at all, in fact I don't even burn, it's as if I am immune to the sun. For that reason I am super excited to try out the Zhuzh Tan Accelerator, which is supposed to help people who struggle to tan to actually get some colour, and the reviews I've seen online are really positive! I haven't had a chance to use this yet because it is still way too cold for tanning in the UK, but I can't wait to crack this out on holiday, and of course I'll let you know if it's the miracle product I'm hoping for. 

So that's everything! If Ideal World has somehow managed to pass you by then hopefully this little post has inspired you to check out their website, because they have literally hundreds of skincare and makeup gems waiting to be discovered. Let me know if anything has caught your eye! 

*PR sample, my review expresses my own honest opinions 

The Most Beautiful Products In My Collection

Sunday 16 April 2017

As I confess my love for at least one beautifully packaged product per blog post, I thought it was finally time to dedicate a whole post to the subject. I know it's not right to judge a book by it's cover, but for me design does play an important role in deciding whether to make a purchase or not, especially if the product has a high price point. I like my makeup to have an attractive exterior so I can display it nicely on my dressing table, but it also has to work for my skin type and be something that I will get a lot of wear out of, which means I'm quite selective with my choices! I've put together a list of the most beautiful products in my collection, all of which I wear constantly.

Charlotte Tilbury

I started to make a list of the most beautiful Charlotte Tilbury products to feature in this post, but then I realised that I was including literally everything, so I decided to mention the brand as a whole instead. I am yet to try a disappointing Charlotte Tilbury product, so I don't have to worry that the pretty exterior is a compromise for quality when making a purchase. My favourites are of course her lipsticks, which are presented in rose gold casing; they don't dry out my lips and the lasting power is great. If you're yet to try your first lipstick from the brand then I recommend checking out Pillow Talk and Super Cindy which are gorgeous everyday shades. Another product that I highly recommend is the Filmstar Bronze and Glow palette, which contains one of the best non-glittery highlighters that I have ever tried, and the gold packaging has a beautiful vintage feel to it. 

Dior Diorskin Nude Air Luminizer 002

When I spotted Dior's Nude Air Luminizer on Amelia's Instagram,  I headed to the House of Fraser website faster than you can say "goodbye holiday savings". You'll have probably noticed by this point that I am a sucker for metal packaging, to me it makes a product feel more sturdy and less breakable, as well as being aesthetically pleasing. I have used this powder almost every day since it landed on my doorstep, so much that I am worried that the pretty embossing is already beginning to fade! I'm so in love with the soft glowy look that it adds to my skin. 

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush 

Hourglass is another brand that can do no wrong in my eyes. My love affair started when I managed to pick up one of their Ambient Lighting Blush palettes for only £5 in a sample sale, and I used all of the shades till I hit pan, even the one that wasn't quite right for my skin tone, because I had never used a product that felt so luxe before. Since then I have added a couple more products to my collection, an individual blush (in Lumious Flush, a shade which really flatters my skin tone) and the Ambient Lighting Edit which is presented in faux marble ... so Instagrammable! 

Milani Powder Blush 

I hadn't planned to mention Milani, as I just spoke about my them in my "brands I want to try more from" post, but I just couldn't write about beautiful design and not include them! I love the gold packaging of all Milani products, but I'm especially smitten with the romantic rose petal embossing that they include on the Powder Blushes. Their products look gorgeous on display, and are also really lovely to use, they're almost too good to be true considering the drugstore price tag. 

Too Faced Sweet Peach Collection

Too Faced's Papa Don't Peach blush is as cute as a button. I love the name, I love the smiling peach design and I love that it smells like peaches! This has been my go-to blush this springtime, as it adds a beautiful glow to my skin, as well as being a really pretty peachy shade. I am still (just about) resisting the temptation to buy the full palette, as it looks so adorable, but I've heard mixed reviews about how the shades actually perform. 

So those are the prettiest products in my collection, the ones I display proudly on my dressing table, and my Instagram account! What is the most beautiful product you own? 


Brands I Want To Try More From This Spring

Sunday 9 April 2017

Back in January I set myself the resolution to try some new beauty brands this year in attempt to break out of the makeup and skincare rut that I had been caught in for a while. Of course, this has turned out to be the easiest resolution to keep ('exercise more" is the hardest, if you were wondering) and I have already fallen in love with so many new products! I thought I would share some of my favourite recent discoveries with you, and talk about what I would like to try next from each brand.


First up is a brand I have only tried one product from, but that product is a real gem. I discovered L'Occitane's Almond Velvet Hands hand cream when I was suffering from exceptionally dry skin caused by the cold weather, and it ticked all of the boxes! Velvet Hands is a lightly scented cream with a built-in SPF which leaves skin feeling so soft and smooth, but also melts in without leaving behind any kind of residue, perfect for when I'm at work and still need to type. It took my hands from dry and sore to soft and moisturised within just a couple of days, so for me that's pretty much holy grail status achieved. Having been so impressed by the hand cream, I've also been eying up some of L'Occitane's face creams and moisturisers, and they have such a big selection that I think I'm going to have to choose a couple! The ones that stand out to me for my current needs are the Shea Ultra Rich Comforting Face Cream, as the description specifically mentions being for dry to very dry skin, and sensitive skin types which is an exact definition of my face right now, and the Precious Night Cream, as I'm getting to an age where I am starting to think about anti-ageing (prevention is the best cure) and this moisturiser has a lot of anti-ageing benefits. There are so many different creams available that you will almost certainly find one to match your skin type and requirements, so I recommend checking them out!


I feel like the expression "a picture is worth a thousand words" is relevant the case of Milani, as their products are some of the most beautiful I've ever seen. I like to refer to them as the high-end drugstore brand, offering products like the Powder Brushes with intricate rose petal design for only £12 ... be still my beating heart! And asides from the stunning packaging and design, the formula of their products is also really lovely, for example Strobelight Instant Glow Powder is an amazing highlighter which packs a seriously glowy punch. I plan to try one of their Baked Blushes next as I've had so many recommendations (and seen so many beautiful photos of them on Instagram!)

Too Faced 

For a long time the only product I had tried from Too Faced was the Better Than Sex Mascara, and though it is my favourite mascara of all time, I didn't have much of an interest in the rest of their products. That all changed when they released the Sweet Peach collection, and I became suddenly aware of my desperate need for cute makeup. I picked up the Papa Don't Peach blush and have fallen head over heels for it, it's the perfect peachy shade for spring, so I've been wearing it almost every day. Right now I am (not so) patiently awaiting the launch of the Natural Love collection in the UK, because I need to own that adorable eye shadow palette more than I've ever needed anything, and of course one of the Love Light highlighters too.


When I first entered Sephora in Times Square last Christmas I ran straight for the Tarte counter, like a little kid in a sweet shop. I had been eyeing up the Tartlette In Bloom Palette for such a long time, and I was determined not to have to wait a minute longer for it, and I have been in love with it since that moment. Since purchasing Tartlette In Bloom I have actually only bought one more product from the brand, the Tarteist Pro Glow To Go palette, which I use every single day (the bronzer is the best I have ever tried for my super pale skin). When it comes to Tarte I have a wishlist as long as my arm, I really want to try one of their famous Amazonian Clay blushes, and of course the Shape Tape concealer, which always seems to be out of stock in the shade that I need.

The Ordinary 

Recently my skin has been misbehaving so I've been looking for some new skincare additions to help me to get it back under control. One brand I've been trialling is The Ordinary, an affordable brand with a really impressive range of products. I decided to pick up a Lactic Acid and also a Hyaluronic acid, as though my skin is breaking out it's also still incredibly dry. So far I've only tried the Hyaluronic Acid and I am very impressed! I use it underneath all of my creams and serums and even when I only apply a tiny amount it seems to make my other skincare products work 10x better, and my skin is instantly less dry as a result. I really want to expand my skincare routine, so let me know if you have any recommendations of what I should try next.

So those are some of the brands that I really want to try more from this spring, let me know which brands you've fallen for recently in the comments.

*This post is sponsored by L'Occitane

Flatlays That Didn't Make The Cut

Sunday 2 April 2017

When I first started this blog there was once piece of advice I received many times - post the content you would like to read. I've wanted to write another photography post for a while as they're some of my favourites to read, but I was determined to find a different way of presenting it, as I already listed my tips and tricks in my previous photography blogpost. With that in mind, I've decided to share with you some of my rejected flatlays - photos that I took and edited but decided not to share on my blog or Instagram. Lets go on a wander through my trash can!

I originally rejected this flatlay because I didn't like the spacing of the flowers - I'm a big fan of symmetry and this shot is lacking in it.  The whole image would have looked nicer had I evenly positioned the flowers, but I'm glad I didn't persevere as it still would have been quite dull, and wouldn't have done the beautiful blush justice. When there's only one product in a flatlay I usually like to build up the props around it so it is part of a bigger story (I know, that sounds really pretentious but I can't think of another way to describe it!) So after playing around with the tones in photoshop I decided to reshoot, and this is how it turned out: 

I think this shot is much more interesting, my attention is still on the product, so the props aren't too distracting, but they help to add some feeling to the flatlay. The second image is also much warmer because of the pink paper background, which ties in better with the tones of the peach blush. 

I had been taking a lot of inspiration from Pinterest when I decided to take this photo. I loved the look of flatlays styled with hands (like these, for example 1, 2, 3), but when I came to take one myself I realised that they're not as easy as to shoot as they look. I don't have a tripod, or a friend who is willing to take photos for me, so I had to awkwardly hold my heavy camera in one hand above my head and press the shutter button with that same hand. Needless to say, this was not one of my favourite photo shooting sessions, as it resulted in me accidentally hitting myself on the head with the camera with such force that twinkling stars appeared around me. The final image isn't a bad shot, it's just not very neat - the T is upside-down on the bottle lid and the positioning of my hand is quite awkward. I'm definitely going to attempt one of these images again when I buy a tripod though, so wish me luck! 

This is one from the early days! I'd had the idea of putting the Lush star wand inside a bunch of flowers, which actually looks quite pretty, but then I hadn't thought about the rest of the flatlay at all, so I grabbed three random and unrelated pink products from my stash to fill the white space. I wish I had used some of my favourite pink lipsticks or nail polishes instead which would have made much more sense. In the past few months I've been working on only taking photos with products that relate to each other, which I can then write about in a blogpost or Instagram caption, rather than just laying out a bunch of random products which look nice together. 

I actually took this photo just last week! The main reason I decided not to post it to Instagram is because the tones are all a bit too similar, which makes it look quite flat, the positioning of the flowers at the top is also sloppy (I think they would have looked nicer in one of the top corners.) The two products are also weakly related to each other (I bought them both in Superdrug), so instead I decided to split them up, using the Zoella Bath Fizzer in my Sick Day Routine blog post, featuring the image below: 

I hope you enjoyed this post! None of the images I shared are bad images, they just don't fit the look and feel that I'm currently aiming for with my blog and Instagram content. I feel quite nervous about sharing my "reject reel" with the world, so please leave a comment below if you found it interesting, and if lots of people like it I might do another similar post in a couple of months! 
Powered by Blogger.
Theme Designed By Hello Manhattan

Your copyright

©Faye Sampson 2019