Over the last few days I have been somewhat attempting to Spring Clean my beauty stash - it is amazing how many half used tubes of mascara and dried up nail polish one person can amass - in order to fully utilise and appreciate the products that I do love and reach for. I've also decided that for every new product I purchase, one neglected product must be donated or disregarded depending on its condition - out with the old and in with the new. Let me share a few note worthy additions to both my bathroom and make-up bag...
New Jo Malone Cologne Intense 60ml
The Jo Malone Cologne Intense range may not be a recent arrival to the fragrance market (other than the latest arrival Jo Malone Myrrh & Tonka) but the new, dinky, travel-ready 50ml size of all seven scents are and as such, are something I imagine you'll be seeing a lot of in the coming months. As much as I adore a good few of the Jo Malone Cologne Intense fragrances, there is no denying that they are super lux and as such come at a premium price. The other issue with the original 100ml size of the Cologne Intense range, is that they are far from travel friendly and may not be the best choice - purely based on volume - for the picky fragrance consumer. The new 50ml size is not only utterly adorable but by far more suited to being lugged around - travel or otherwise - and of course the reduced sized is ever so slightly more affordable too. I was very kindly gifted a bottle of the Jo Malone Cologne Intense in Velvet Rose & Oud and despite not being a huge fan of either key note, it has left a lasting, powerful impression - I can imagine that this would make a wonderful Valentine's Day gift. You can find all seven scents here - link.
Jo Malone Tuberose Angelica Body Cream
Admittedly I am not the best at applying moisturiser to my body and more often than not I need more than gentle persuasion, to as much as look at a body cream, oil or lotion but when products smell and feel as great as Jo Malone Tuberose Angelica Body Cream do, half the battle is all but won. As you would expect - or demand - from any body moisturiser worth its salt, Jo Malone Tuberose Angelica Body Cream is thick, creamy (a little goes a long way), indulgent and most importantly hydrating without any greasy or heavy residue. The bonus element is that much like all Jo Malone bath and body products this is wonderfully perfumed, so much so, that sometimes I use this in place of a mist on fragrance and enjoy the gentler and somewhat milkier (due to the cream based medium) take on a Jo Malone classic. Find it here - link.
Make Up Geek Eyeshadows
If you haven't already indulged in a shade or two of the ever hyped and raved about Make Up Geek Eyeshadows, stop what you are doing right now and treat yourself (or at a later date because y'know it is still January and the bills don't pay themselves). At just £6 each (there are more expensive formulations which I have yet to test), you will not find a better eyeshadow formulation, full stop. Yes that includes MAC, Urban Decay and Too Faced - none of which even come close to the Make Up Geek Eyeshadows in pigmentation levels nor general formula. Each shade - and I own around 15 in total - apply beautifully, blending with ease, highly saturated with coloured pigment and long wearing. My only criticism is that the Make Up Geek Eyeshadows do tend to lean a little soft in formula meaning that if you do drop one, it is lights out forever...or until you re-press it. If you do decide to purchase a few Make Up Geek Eyeshadows a Z-Palette is your best friend. You can find the entire Make Up Geek Eyeshadow range here - link.
Too Faced Sun Bunny Bronzer
Due to a long, wet and generally wild few months of Winter, I am most certainly pale and truthfully not all that interesting and as such most of my trusted bronzers are a little out of place within my current beauty routine (read - too deep for my pasty complexion). If this is an all too familiar scenario, then Too Faced Sun Bunny Bronzer may be the answer to all your washed out Winter woes. No this is not an entirely matte bronzer, rather it is a duo of complimentary shades of warm toned brown that combine to create an uplifting, illuminating and altogether light, golden flush of colour. Admittedly it is not the best for contouring due to the shimmer element but it does add dimension and warmth to the complexion in the most natural and flattering way, and as an added bonus it does double up as an eyeshadow palette. If you are loyal to matte bronzers, I do also highly recommend the Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Bronzers which come in two colour-ways: light and deep. You can find the entire range here - link.
Ciate Liquid Velvet Lipsticks
If you are a fan of matte liquid lipstick and who isn't, the one new investment you should make to what I am guessing is your groaning stash before the year is over, is one of Ciate's Liquid Velvet Lipsticks. The formulation is as close to liquid matte perfection as I have ever experienced: soft, comfortable, fully opaque, long wearing and highly pigmented - it will make you re-think your entire matte lipstick stash from the first wear. Recently Ciate have just launched no less than nine new shades, most of which are nudes aimed at all skin tones (great if you have yet to find your dream nude lip colour) but with 21 shades )bold, classic and all that is in-between) in total, I am more than sure you will find something to suit your personal preference. I can all but promise you, that you will be blown away from first application. For those intrigued, you can shop and browse the shades here - link.
Smashbox L.A Lights Blendable Lip and Cheek Colour in Hollywood and Highlight
Highlighting should be quick and easily, especially if it is a daily occurrence. At the moment I am a huge fan of "strobing" or as they are more commonly known highlighting sticks - chunky crayons of delicate shimmer encrusted cream that glides on to the skin with ease, delivering an instant illuminating quality. The problem with some products of this nature is that they can be remove any make-up that they are applied on top of, and/or don't quite have the stamina to last all day. If this rings true, you need to try the Smashbox L.A Lights Blendable Lip and Cheek Colour in Hollywood and Highlight - a soft, gentle, almost champagne toned, glistening highlighter that does not contain chunky glitter particles and yet instantly brightens and illuminates the skin. The great thing about this particular style of highlighter is that you are offered a level of precision due to the crayon style - not to mention the formulation can be both sheered out for a subtle approach, or applied in layers for a more dramatic sheen effect. You can see all eight shades of the L.A Lights range here - link.
E.L.F Studio Ultimate Blending Brush
As someone with a very heavy hand, I blow through brushes quicker than the average consumer; it is a blessing in that it encourages me to seek out affordable and new options frequently, and a curse because in some lights it is a waste of money due to me being cack handed. Last Summer whilst in New York, I purchased what I deem to be the holy grail of E.L.F face brushes - the E.L.F Studio Ultimate Blending Brush. To the eye, this may seem like another unassuming foundation brush but to those in the know, it is most likely the difference between a good make-up day and one that is merely so-so. The E.L.F Studio Ultimate Blending Brush is the perfect balance between dense and fluffy, meaning it can and will seamlessly blend all forms of foundation into the skin with ease and without ever compromising the finish or coverage of said product. In my opinion, it is akin in quality to an Illamasqua brush. I am now on my second E.L.F Studio Ultimate Blending Brush (the first I lost rather than destroyed) - if that doesn't say it all, I don't know what does. Oh and the kicker? It costs a mere £7.50. Yes really. Find it here - link.
For those curious as to what beauty staples I will be clutching onto well into 2017 and beyond, this post narrows down no less than 17 of my must-have beauty picks.