Skincare products I can't live without

My obsession with skincare started when I was in my teens and I began by trying my Grandmothers various lotions or creams as she always had beautiful clear skin. Later I began experimenting for myself to see what skincare suited me best. Like many  young women I read magazines or blogs to see what new wonder product was on the market and felt I had to buy every single item that promised amazing results. At one point I had three different night creams, four different cleansers and a number of other serums, tonics, toners and buffers, all on the go at once and this probably wasn’t doing my skin any good what so ever.

Luckily I’ve never suffered with any major problems, I have dry, sensitive skin with the odd breakout and a few areas of eczema on my body which usually flares up if I’m stressing about something. I also don’t want to pay over the top prices for my skincare products when I know there are some amazing brands out there that do the job just as well.

These are the skincare products that I’ve been using over the past couple of months.

Liz Earle Hot Cloth Cleanser and No7 Gentle Toner

I first fell in love with Liz Earle Cleanse And Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser after buying a mini sample size and I’ve been using it to cleanse my face ever since. It’s a gorgeous rich, creamy consistency, full of natural ingredients and it’s super gentle on my skin and leaves it feeling so soft, yet still very effective at removing all of my make up. It gently exfoliates your skin too, without being too harsh and stripping all the natural oils from your skin.

If I’m wearing heavier makeup then I’ll occasionally use Boots No7 Micellar Water first, just to remove the top layer of dirt and grime. It’s also been a brilliant cleanser to take on holiday with me, it’s quick and easy to use plus I usually only wear tinted moisturiser, mascara and bronzer when I’m away.

I use No7 Soft and Soothed Gentle Toner after I’ve cleansed or used a face mask to make sure that every scrap of product or makeup has been removed. It’s super gentle and doesn’t sting my skin.

The Body Shop Vitamin E Serum and Moisturiser

The Body Shop Vitamin E range has been around for a number of years and one I keep going back to. After I have cleansed or used a face mask I’ll apply the Moisture Serum, followed by the Moisture Day Cream, both are light enough to wear under makeup, leaving my skin feel so soft without being sticky. In the evening I’ll switch to using the  Vitamin E Over Night Serum In Oil, this has the benefits of a serum and oil all in one, it’s lightweight and non greasy. To finish off I’ll use the Moisture Night Cream it’s super rich but absorbs into my skin beautifully. I absolutely love the Vitamin E range, it’s fantastic, it almost feels as though I’m having a mini pamper session every time I complete my skincare routine. My skin feels hydrated and nourished, it looks radiant and healthy, what more could a girl ask for?

It’s important to me to look after the delicate skin around my eyes as I get older. I’ve been using Superdrug B Nourished Eye Cream, it feels incredibly soothing and helps reduce any puffiness and dark circles. It’s a delicate, lightweight cream and makes my eye area feel so soft after gently dabbing on a few drops.

Formula 10.0.6 Mud Mask

Once a week I love to apply a face mask for a real deep clean and right now I’m using  Formula 10.0.6 Pores Be Pure Skin Clarifying Mud Mask. It’s been quite hard to find a face mask that’s gentle on my sensitive skin and doesn’t cause any irritation, but this one is absolutely amazing. My skin feels extremely soft and looks positively glowing after I use it. It’s incredibly relaxing to pop on a face mask while soaking in the bath, listening to music and I have to say this one also smells absolutely delicious!

Lush Lip Scrub and The Body Shop Rose Hand Cream

There are a couple of extras I use as part of my skincare routine including Lush Bubblegum Lip Scrub as it helps to remove any dry, flaky skin. I mainly use this if I’m wearing a lot of matte liquid lipsticks, as they can be quite drying. I gently apply the scrub using my finger tip and it leaves my lips feeling super soft. It smells incredible and leaves your lips with a gorgeous sweet taste afterwards. Then I apply my favourite lip balm before applying whatever lip colour I’ve chosen that day.

I have to say The Body Shop British Rose Soft Petal Hand Cream  smells divine, before I even mention how wonderful it is! It’s a thick, creamy constancy and it melts into into my skin really quickly. I like to look after my hands just as much as I do my face, this hand cream is super nourishing and leaves my hands feeling so soft. I use it after I’ve washed my hands or whenever they feel a bit dry, I’ve even chucked a tube of it in my handbag so I can apply some when I’m out!

The Body Shop Atlas Mountain Rose Body Cream and The Body Shop Skin Defence Essence

I’ve been using The Body Shop’s Skin Defence Multi-Protection Essence on my skin before I go out in the sun. It’s a lightweight milk that makes my skin feel so soft, it contains SPF 50 so it will protect my skin against sun damage. It’s seen a lot of use recently and came with me on a few trips away.

I apply The Body Shop’s Atlas Mountain Rose Body Cream after my morning shower, it’s super creamy and leaves my skin feeling silky smooth. It has a slightly different fragrance compared to the plain rose one, this body cream has less of a sweet smell due to rose mixed with warm spices and amber, so it’s a really comforting fragrance. It’s helped sort out any dry areas, especially my elbows, knees and ankles. Plus it’s a wonderful body cream to apply after having a relaxing bath!

Do you have a regular skincare routine? What products are you really enjoying at the moment?

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Beauty and makeup products I've loved using this month

Well my plans to do an Instagram Story every day during July went right out the window, although I did manage a few days, this is something I’d really like to make an effort with next month. I’ve really been enjoying taking more lifestyle photos to share on Instagram. When I looked back over my Instagram from before I was blogging, my feed was full of life, hardly a beauty product insight. Gradually it shifted more towards “Rosie Loves Life” and “Sharon” kind of disappeared, it used to be my online photo album to share with friends but then I suppose that’s what Facebook is for.

Anyway, July has been a busy month for me with some very exciting things going on, I met new people, explored new places and went to the cinema for a girls night out. I’ve also been trying out some fab new products and most of them have made it to this months favourites along side some of the other things I’ve loved in July.

W7 Eyeshadow Palette Delicious

W7 Eyeshadow palette in Delicious

This is an absolutely stunning eyeshadow palette and I’d been trying to get hold of it when it first appeared online. Finally I managed to purchase the palette as soon as it came back into stock and I’ve been absolutely obsessed with it ever since! It’s a dupe for the ABH Modern Renaissance palette, but much more affordable at only £12.95. There are 14 different eyeshadows with a mix of berry and neutral shades, including matte and shimmer, some of which are totally out of my comfort zone. I’ve mainly been using the darker, berry tones, which are highly pigmented, but a few of the lighter shades don’t really show up much on me at all. I’ve been getting much braver with my makeup looks but I’m not quite ready to dye my hair pink just yet!

The Body Shop Atlas Mountain Rose Body Cream and The Body Shop Skin Defence Essence

The Body Shop has been a place I’ve loved for years but hadn’t been in for a while. I needed to replace a few bits and picked up the Skin Defence Multi-Protection Essence and I’ve been using it on my skin before I go out in the sun. It’s a lightweight milk that makes my skin feel so soft, it contains SPF 50 so it will protect my skin against sun damage so it’s seen a lot of use this month and came with me on both trips away.

I’ve also been using The Body Shop’s Atlas Mountain Rose Body Cream as part of my daily skincare routine, it’s super creamy and leaves my skin feeling extremely soft. It’s has a slightly different fragrance than the plain old rose I usually go for, this body cream has less of a sweet smell due to rose mixed with warm spices and amber, so it’s a really comforting fragrance. I’ve been suffering with a lot of dry areas on my skin, especially my elbows, and this has been the only body cream that’s sorted them out. Plus it’s a wonderful body cream to apply after having a relaxing bath, oh that’ll be the next thing on my list, the bath foam to go with it!

NYX HD Foundation and Barry M Lipstick Mannequin

For a drugstore foundation I’ve been pretty impressed with NYX HD Studio Photogenic Foundation, I tend not to wear to much base in the summer but occasionally I need more than a tinted moisturiser. After being outside in the sun a lot I had to get a foundation that was a few shades darker than my winter one, so thought I’d try the NYX range. This foundation applies really lovely with my damp beauty sponge and gives a lovely dewy finish. I only apply a light layer but the coverage is incredible. It doesn’t feel too heavy on my skin and didn’t stick to any dry patches. Plus it comes in a handy size tube, so it’s easy to pack for a holiday.

Barry M Satin Super Slick Lip Paint in Mannequin is a beautiful peachy, nude shade and has been my go-to lipstick on many occasions this month. It contains Shea Butter, so it’s extremely moisturising on my lips, it almost acts like a lip balm and lipstick in one which has been great on busy days. It’s incredibly glossy and last pretty well considering it’s a satin lip product. I’ve also seen a gorgeous wine shade, which will be perfect for Autumn!

Sass & Belle Trinket Dish

The month started of with the most amazing trip to Brighton, I was extremely excited as it was my first time visiting there and I was going to meet my blogging friend Holly. We both had an amazing day together, exploring the sights, eating ice cream on the Pier and generally having loads of fun hanging out together. Holly very kindly gave me this pretty trinket dish as a reminder of our day together and it has sat on my dressing table with my favourite pieces of jewellery on it . Isn’t it so pretty? If you’d like to find out more about what we got up to, I’ll leave a link to my blog post here.

W7 Nail Polish in shade Fluorescent Pink

I adore pink nail polish but this has to be my favourite shade ever! I’ve been wearing W7 Nail Polish In Fluorescent Pink for most of the month and it seemed to go with most outfits I was wearing and looked pretty good when I was holding products for close up shots in my photos too! It applies really nicely, quick drying and stays chip free for days, which is pretty good going for me.

Pink Beach Hut in Southwold

My second trip of the month was a few days in Southwold. I’d never been there before so really didn’t know what to expect, but it turned out to be a really beautiful, quaint seaside town. When we fist arrived I had the most amazing vegetarian cooked breakfast in a cafe by the sea, it was so huge that I was full up for most of the day! We took a walk along the promenade and past the pastel coloured beach huts, had a stroll around the shops and walked along the pier where Adrian and I got caught in the heaviest rain shower ever! We were laughing so much and both looked like we been for a swim in the sea, but luckily soon dried off.

A painting from Dorkface Shop on Etsy

By now you’ll all know how much I adore Jemma and everything she sells on her Etsy store and I couldn’t let the month go without mentioning this gorgeous pink, white and blue painting from her. When Jemma started selling one off pieces of artwork I’ve fallen in love with every single one. She even shows little snippets on her Instagram Stories as she’s creating each piece, it’s so therapeutic I could watch them all day. It is first come first served with these larger canvas paintings, but each one I’ve seen so far has looked amazing. This one is now in my bedroom and I absolutely love it, the colours are beautifully put together. When someone commented on this on her social media they mentioned having the feeling of candy floss, clouds, flamingos and 1950’s tea dresses (sorry, I can’t remember who, so I can’t credit them). These canvas paintings are different to her usual drawings, you see what you want to see in them, she had a stunning orange, yellow and green one which had the feel of freedom in the sunshine and exploring in the woods. Jemma even had one with pom poms and glitter on!

What things have you been loving recently?

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I always get very excited when brands bring out their new season products, especially when it’s a brand I’ve loved for a while. The very first item of makeup I bought from GOSH was a clear eyebrow gel back in 2015. Back then I thought they were a relatively new company, so imagine my surprise when I discovered GOSH has been around since 1945!

I was over the moon when GOSH emailed me to invite me to the launch of their new AW17 collection up in London, I would’ve absolutely loved to have gone but I sadly I couldn’t make it that evening. GOSH* very kindly sent me out some of their new products to try, how lovely is that?

It would have been amazing to see some of the other bloggers I know there too, like Holly (from Golly Miss Holly) and Tania (from When Tania Talks), but hey, there’s always next time!

The Strobe ‘N Glow Kit in 002 Blush has a gorgeous matte blush, two highlighting blushers and a highlighter, all four shades are stunning and the powder is incredibly soft.

GOSH also have a Strobe ‘N Glow Kit 001 Highlight, which has three stunning shades for bronzing and a highlighter. If that’s as amazing as the blush kit then I’ll be adding that to my basket next time I’m in Superdrug!

The Mix and Fix Blender brush is perfect for mixing liquid foundation with concealer or liquid highlighter such as GOSH Lumi Drops. The brush is so soft and applied my makeup evenly, without leaving any streaky lines. It’s 100% synthetic and suitable for vegans.

If you love GOSH Lumi Drops as much as I do, then you’ll be pleased to know there are two new shades, Gold and Rose Gold (definitely need that one in my life!) These liquid highlighters can be used on bare skin, over the top of your foundation or just on certain areas of your face to give a healthy glow.

I was particularly interested in trying out the Prime ‘N Set Primer and Mattifying Powder in Banana. You can use it under your makeup as a primer help minimize pores, fine lines and redness. The powder can also be used to set your makeup in place and help control  shine to create a flawless look. It’s so incredibly lightweight that it didn’t feel like I was wearing any powder at all.

GOSH Colour Corrector Kit has 5 different shades for high coverage of any problems areas, a concealer (for small imperfections), Yellow (for under eye circles), Green (to cover any red patches), Purple (for any yellow tones) and Peach (for brightening under the eye). It’s a super creamy consistency which blends in beautifully, I found it best to apply a primer first as this stops the corrector from creasing.

The Lift and Highlight 2 in 1 pencil helps to define, lift and highlight, one end is matte and the other is a shimmery shade. It’s perfect for under your eye brow, the inner corner of your eyes and your cupids bow. Again, it’s a thick creamy formula that blends in easily using your finger tips. The shimmer shade is absolutely stunning and certainly gave me a more “wide awake” look!

Primer Plus+ is pretty amazing, it made my skin feel extremely soft and gave my complexion such a healthy glow. The primer is super lightweight and it’s a pale nude shade when you first apply but quickly adapts to most skin tones. It contains oak extract, plus it’s anti pollution and is perfume free, which is great for my sensitive skin.

My Favourite Mascara gives your lashes a wonderful, natural, everyday look. The large fibre brush helps to lengthen and define each lash, yet adding loads of volume without going all clumpy. It’s smudge proof, it lasted all day and still looked amazing when I got home, even after my eyes were watering thanks to hay fever!

These products are all available from Superdrug, either in store or online, if you fancy getting your hands on GOSH’s new collection!

Have you bought anything from the new collection? What would be your favourite item?

*These items were sent to me by GOSH but all opinions are my own.

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When it comes to my beauty routine my hair can sometimes get forgotten about, but occasionally I’ve ended up with more hair care products than I know what to do with. Over the years I’ve tried numerous different products that gave me a promise of beautiful flowing locks, only to find out that I’d spent my hard earned cash on something that really wasn’t that great at all.

One of the best things I’ve ever done for my hair is to have a regular trim, I get mine cut roughly every 8 weeks to get rid of any dry, split ends. Last Year I started looking for a new hair salon in my home town and so I popped into Style Me Hair Dressing on the off chance they could fit me in. A few days later I was having my hair cut by Amy, who is so lovely and actually listened to what I wanted done and didn’t get all scissor happy. My hair was extremely dry and had a lot of breakage at the ends, but thankfully she did her magic and now I think it looks wonderful and is in really good condition. I always see Amy now whenever I’m booked in at Style Me Hair Dressing as I just love the way she cuts and styles my hair It’s a beautiful salon where all the staff are professional yet super friendly and I’m always made to feel at home, and yes they even have fairy lights!

These are the 3 hair care products that are absolute essentials as part of my beauty routine right now.

Superdrug Hair Therapy with Argan

This hair oil has been a real saviour for me recently as I’ve been out in the sun a lot more while I’ve been away and of course my hair had a few days of looking like a birds next. I bought this as a last minute thing and wasn’t sure what to expect, I’ve tried serums before and they just haven’t done the trick, I was honestly so pleased with the condition of my hair after leaving a small amount of this hair treatment oil over night, it looked and felt so silky soft, almost as if I’d been to the hair dressers for an expensive treatment. It’s amazing value for only £3.99. You can also use a few drops after styling to smooth down any stray hairs. You don’t need to use very much at all, one pump does the whole length of my hair without making it look greasy or weighing it down. If you use this on damp hair before styling it reduces the amount of time you spend drying your hair by about 40%, and if you have long hair like me anything that saves me time is a bonus. At the moment this is my Holy Grail of hair products!

milk_shake Incredible Milk

I absolutely love this hair product, it’s probably one of the best leave in conditioning treatments I’ve ever tried. Leave in conditioners tend to be a pain as they feel heavy and make my hair look greasy, but milk_shake Incredible Milk protects against heat damage and it leaves my hair feeling soft and looking healthy without weighing my hair down. It’s made with a blend of fruit extracts, including raspberry, mango and papaya, so it smells incredible too! The seed butter and milk protein helps to nourish your hair and  keep it feeling silky soft by repairing damaged hair and reducing frizz. If you have coloured hair this product will keep your colour looking good for longer and it’s also fab for being out in the sun as it contains UV protection. I spray a small amount of milk_shake Incredible Milk before styling, especially if I’m using my straighteners, the product not only protects my hair but also detangles it and leaves my hair looking smooth and shiny.

Knight & Wilson Wilson Style Freedom Beach Body Spray

Most of the time I wear my hair straight, but sometimes I fancy adding a little more volume to my style. Before I’d even tried this styling spray I read “beachy, textured, mermaid look” and that was it, I’d fallen in love. Believe me though, it actually works! I spray a small amount all over my hair and dry it using the deffuser. Instead of using a hair brush to style my hair I’ll scrunch it up using my fingers, most styling sprays leave my hair feeling crisp and sticky but with this one my hair still felt soft. Afterwards, my hair looked as though I’d sat there for hours with a curling wand to add volume and create beautiful waves. The Beach Body Spray is an absolutely fantastic styling product, one that I’ll be using for quite a while yet.

I’ve had so many compliments on how lovely my hair looks recently and it’s all down to these three products and a regular trim at the hair salon, which I am so happy about as I’ve been colouring my hair for years and I’ve used just about every heated appliance known to mankind.

What are your hair care essentials?

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For most of my life I’ve never been a morning person, I’ve always wanted to be the kind of person who jumped straight out of bed, full of the joys of Spring and could take on any challenges that came my way. However, I love my bed way too much and I’ve lost count how many times my alarm clock has almost gone flying across the room in temper! I’ve found I’m at my most productive once the clock strikes midnight, but there are just somethings you cannot do in the wee small hours. During the day I’d end up snapping at people for no other reason than I was just too flippin tired, so I only had myself to blame! Something had to change.

It didn’t happen over night and it took a lot of will power on my part, but eventually I got used to being an early riser, plus I felt a lot happier and healthier. Yes, there are still days when I fancy a lie in or a lazy morning with breakfast in bed, but it feels more of a treat because I’m not doing it all the time.

So if you’re like I was and are up at 3 AM writing your life story or watching just one more episode of your favourite TV show and want to change from a night owl to a morning person, carry on reading as I have a few tips that may help you.

Move The Alarm Clock

By forcing myself to actually get out of bed to turn off the alarm I was less likely to want to crawl back under the covers where it’s warm and cosy. I’m not suggesting putting your clock in another room, but as far away from the bed as possible. Once you’re awake don’t get back into bed, taking away the snooze option is the first step to becoming a morning person.

Hydrate

Going a whole night’s sleep without fluid can lead to fatigue. All those cute beakers that were gathering dust, well I put one to good use and have a drink of water as soon as I wake up. Water is great for making your skin look healthy and getting your metabolism going. If you really can’t face water then try a herbal tea instead of your usual 3 cups of coffee, don’t get me wrong, I’ll still have a mid morning coffee but I found by cutting down on the amount I had I felt a lot less sluggish and much more productive throughout the day.

Start The Night Before

Obviously you don’t need me to tell you to go to bed earlier, I knew it’s what I had to do but never listened to my own advice. I would be at the point of exhaustion where I’d almost fall apart at any stressful situation through the day. I had to be so tough on myself but it paid off in the end. I got myself into a proper bedtime routine with no social media (yes, that’s right, no last minute checking on who’s doing what!)

I now have a bath or shower, do my skincare and then read my book for a while before finally turning out the light. I made my bedroom into a relaxing environment and started using a sleep spray on my pillow which smells of lavender and camomile. All these changes made me want to get into bed, rather than feeling like I had to, because I enjoy my bedtime routine.

Plan Ahead

You know that feeling and you’ve woken up late, you’re in a rush and getting yourself all stressed out because you can’t find your keys or that black top you want to wear? Well I’ve been there too and it wasn’t a pretty sight! I started planning things the night before, what outfit I wanted to wear, preparing my breakfast and sorting out my handbag. I’ll sometimes write my To-Do list so I’m not going to bed worrying about tasks I need to get done the following day. Planning ahead gave me extra time in the morning to enjoy my breakfast, a refreshing shower and leave the house looking half way presentable. I have my most used makeup products organised on my dressing table, so they are easy to grab hold of in the morning, not having to hunt down my favourite mascara or lipstick saved me so much time and a lot less stress.

Don’t Give Up

It’s like any changes in life, becoming a morning person will be so hard for your body to adjust at first, but If it’s something you really want to do keep at it. Do whatever it takes to make you enjoy being up earlier in the day, open the curtains to let in natural day light or blast out your favourite tunes as you’re getting ready. You’ll be so pleased when you walk in work or Uni with a smile on your face instead of looking tired and giving everyone an evil stare until you’ve fuelled yourself with enough caffeine to get you past lunchtime!

Are you a night owl or a morning person? Do you have any tips on feeling your best first thing in the morning?

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