Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Christmas 2017 Makeup Gift Guide

L-R Row 1: Dior Pump & Volume Gift Set £25.50   / Stila Liquid Lipstick Collection Bright & Bold £15.30 / Clinique Chubby Sampler Gift Set £22
L-R Row 2: Tam Beauty Christmas Bundle £15/ Zoeva Opulence Eye Shadow Palette £17.50/ Tanya Burr Jingle & Mingel Night Palette  £10
L-R Row 3: Butter London Crown Jewels £16/ NYX Professional Makeup Love Contours All £20  /Soap & Glory Flatterbox £20

It's possible to be on a budget and still be able to buy a few gifts from luxury brands. Stila has bundled three of their famous mini liquid lipsticks for their Bright and Bold collection- it includes Beso (a nice red) and two limited edition shades Lumi and Viola for £15.30. I think it's nice to receive a gift that has a variety of shades to wear.  I've included the Dior Pump and Volume gift set in this category although it's actually £25.50. I was really surprised at the price point because it includes a mini eye shadow palette as well but I have not seen it in person to see how small the palette is. Butter London are known for their nail polishes, but their gift set allows you to try out other products in the range. The Butter London Crown Jewels contains four of their bestsellers: a Petite Plush Rush Lip Gloss in Fireworks, a Double Decker Lashes Mascara, a Glazen Eye Gloss mini in Frosted and a Fashion size Patent Shine 10X Nail polish in Ta-Ta (which claims to last 10 days.) I quite like the sound of their eye gloss it's like a gel but dries to a powder and is long lasting so that the sparkle won't budge. Another high end brand mini gift set is Clinique Chubby Sampler Gift set with 3 mini favorites a Chubby plump and shine lip gloss, a Chubby Stick roly poly rosy cheek colour balm (3.6g) and a Chubby Lash fattening mascara (4ml.)

The Tam Beauty Christmas Bundle contains a Make up Revolution Skin Kiss Highlighter in Champagne Kiss, a Makeup Revolution Rose Gold Lipstick in Chauffeur, Makeup Revolution Amazing Volume Mascara in Black and I Heart Makeup I Heart Chocolate Golden Bar. I love Makeup Revolution and all the products are full sized, popular products. Makeup revolution do highlighters well and the I Heart Chocolate bars are good Too Faced dupes and this one reminds me of Charlie & The Chocolate Factory! Not to mention that their Rose Gold lipstick in Chauffeur is always sold out!

Onto another gift set by Soap and Glory,  the Flatterbox contains: Soap and & Glory Thick & Fast HD mascara in black (10ml ) Supercat liner in black (1.6g) Glow all out Pressed Luminizing face powder (9g), 3 Soap & Glory limited edition lid stuff eye shadows in Copper, Choccy  Cream soda (each 0.8g.) There's also a mini Sexy Mother Pucker in Plums up.

I love Zoeva's brushes they're affordable, high quality that don't shed and last the distance but I've yet to try their eye shadow palettes. I have my eye on the Matte palette but the Zoeva Opulent palette looks stunning! The packaging is gorgeous and the shades are so beautiful. Their eye shadow formula is  enriched with vitamin E and is 100% free of parabens, mineral oils, perfume and phthalates. Another palette I've chosen to include is the NYX is the Love Contours All Palette (I love the name) it's an all in one palette for brows, cheeks and eye lids containing two brow powders, a highlight and contour shades and nine eye shadows. Finally there's the Tanya burr's Jingle and Mingle palette which contains a lip gloss, three eye shadows eyeliner, bronzer and eye shimmer pot.

L-R Row 1: Nars Survival Kit 1 Face Set £45/ Charlotte Tilbury Beauty Icons Set £55
Row 2: Kat Von D x Too Faced Better Together Ultimate Eye Collection £57 /Becca Apres Ski Glow Collection Eye Lights Palette £28/ Charlotte Tilbury Face Seductive Beauty Palette  £49
Row 3: Urban Decay Heavy Metals Eye Shadow Palette £43/Dior Eye Shadow & Lip Palette £65 /Estee Lauder Pink Ribbon Knockout Eyes Collection £45
Row 4: Benefit Cosmetics Bigger & Bolder Brows Gift Set £31.50 /Clinique Colour Craving Makeup Gift Set £55/

Dior is know for it's luxury so I had to include this lip and eye palette which comes in it's own
zipped case. The Becca Apres Ski Glow eye shadow collection has had really good reviews while Benefit Cosmetics are famous for their brow products. The Nars Survival Kit 1 is an all in one palette with two neutral eye shadows in Naïad and Kalahari II, blusher in Off Limits and Mata Hari, a Nars Party Girl Lip Gloss and Black Moon Audacious Mascara.

It's definitely worth looking at the Harrods website which still has the Charlotte Tilbury Beauty Icons gift set despite selling out everywhere else. Alternatively there is the Charlotte Tilbury Face palette which is basically an all in one face palette with 3 eye shadows a bronze, highlight and 2 cheek colours all helpfully numbered. Harrods is also selling the Estee Lauder Pink Ribbon Knockout Eyes, a limited edition set which supports the Breast Cancer Campaign. It's sold out everywhere except at Harrods.

I chose the Kat Von D x Too Faced Better Together gift set because it's rare to have a mash up between brands. (I know they sometimes do across brand gift sets in Sephora but we don't have any stores in the UK.)  The eye colours are wearable and it comes with a full sized Kat Von D liner as well as the much raved about Too Faced Better than Sex Mascara. I included the Clinique Colour Craving Makeup gift set because of the massive price drop from £90 to £55 almost half price, a real bargain! The Urban Decay Heavy Metals eyes shadow palette contains a whopping 20 exclusive shades, 10 on the neutral side and 10 in bright jewel colours a must for any eye shadow fans. 

Top photo credit: pablofalv Presents via photopin (license) Changes Made

Saturday, 16 December 2017

44 D.I.Y Christmas Present ideas When You're on a Budget

Edible Gifts 

Edible gifts are generally well received and pretty cheap and easy to make. Last year I made these low fat chocolate truffles from Gin and Griddle and put them in Christmas themed tins (from Poundworld.) They are 'reduced fat' because the recipe substitutes double cream for coffee. You can't taste the coffee but it gives it a richness to them. This year I'm going to try making Chocolate Bark using these recipes from Lindsey Love at Gardenista. Wrap them up in cellophane and ribbon. Gingerbread men and shapes are also very popular at this time of year and this Jamie Oliver recipe should go down well. I saw these swan biscuits on Pixabay and they look so beautiful. You can get a small swan cookie cutter here and use this recipe for Christmas Jammy Dodgers from Liz Notes or make Linzer Cookies from A Fox In the Kitchen. 

PhotoTop Left: Lindsey Love 

DIY Jewellery 

Chokers and tassel earrings are still trending and luckily they're easy to make. The wrap around suede choker tutorial can be found on Sarah Najafi's blog.  The peach and gold tassel earrings are from Honestly WTF and look very elegant. I think this lanyard bracelet from  Love Maegan looks unisex and would make a good gift for a man as well. Did you know you can make a ring from a spoon? This printable step by step from Kirsten Danielle  will show you how.

PHOTO CREDIT Top Left Kirsten Danielle Top Right Sarah Najafi  Bottom Left Honestly WTF Bottom Right Love Maegan

Winter Accessories

These dragon finger less gloves are perfect for Game Of Throne fans. You can find the crochet pattern at Heart Hook Home here. If you're a knitter then this knitted beanie might be an ideal gift for someone. The pattern can be found at Knitted Patterns. There's an easy D.I.Y faux fur scarf tutorial over at Love Maegan. However don't worry if you can't sew, crochet or knit this infinity scarf  from P.S. Heart is really easy and doesn't even require a needle! 

PHOTO CREDIT Top Left Heart Hook Home Top Right; P.S. Heart Bottom Left; Love Maegan Bottom Right Knitted patterns 

 Bags and Cases

I think this denim makeup bag can also double up as man's wash bag, see how to make it at A Pair and a Spare. This d.i.y tablet case is very smart, practical and unisex and it can be made from leather or vinyl.  The tutorial is here at Brit + CoFor the sewing phobic there's a no sew blue clutch wallet from Hot D.I.Y Tutorial and a no sew black large clutch bag from Brit + Co.

PHOTO CREDIT Top Left : A Pair and a Spare Top Right: Brit + Co Top Right  Bottom Left Hot D.I.Y Tutorial
Bottom Right: Brit + Co

Hair Accessories

These faux pearl hair pins are really simple to make but add glamour to any up do. You can find the tutorial at Yes Missy. Love Maegan has quite a few d.i.y. hair accessory tutorials but I love these gold and black hair combs the best. You can find the tutorial here. I saw this beautiful ribbon on pintrest and realised it would be a easy d.i.y, just sew or glue beads, sequins and rhinestones on to a ribbon. It can be worn as choker as well as a head band. Another quick and easy d.i.y are these rhinestone hair clips the tutorial can be found on the Consumer Crafts Blog.  

PHOTO CREDIT Top Left: Yes Missy Top Right: Love Maegan Bottom Left Pintrest Bottom Right: Consumer Crafts Blog

Photo Gifts

Photos are probably the most treasured possessions and are cited as the one thing you'd rescue in a fire. Going digital means that you can do more with your photos and create lots of  thoughtful gifts. You can turn your Instagram photos into fridge magnets (tutorial by Photojojo here) coasters (see The Frugal Girls here) and even on marshmallows courtesy of Boomf. You can individually frame an Instagram image or gather all your family photos and create a collage. Photos can be turned into candle luminaries (by Our Best Bites) and personalised calendars where you can choose photos for each month or for specific days like nan's birthday. You can check for cheap photo printing deals on Money Saving Expert here.   If there's film footage of family birthdays and holidays you can download them on to DVDs to give as gifts to grandparents.

PHOTO CREDITS Row 1: Top left Our Best Bites  Top Right Photojojo Row 2: Left The Frugal Girls Row 4: Bottom Right Boomf

Body and Bath products

These fun Starbucks style body scrubs and body butters were created by Elle Sees. Choose from Peppermint Mocha Sugar Scrub, Peppermint Body Butter, Peppermint Solid Lotion, Caramel Brulee Latte Sugar Scrub and Body Butter, Snickerdoodle Hot Cocoa Body Sugar Scrub and Body Butter. You can find all these tutorials here.  This cute snowman bath bomb is just like Lush (but cheaper) and can be found under Last Minute Christmas D.I.Y.s over at Elle SeesThe Christmas inspired Peppermint Candy Cane Body Scrub is ideal for winter and the ingredients are very cheap as well (except the  essential oil.) Find the tutorial at The Idea Room. Baths are a way to relax after a hard day and gifting an Oatmeal and Lavender Bath Soak salts will make it even more luxurious. Oatmeal will make skin soft and lavender is known for its calming qualities but the best thing is these are cheap ingredients and very easy to put together just follow the tutorial from Carolyn's Homework.

PHOTO CREDIT Top Left: Elle Sees & Top Left: Elle Sees Bottom Left Carolyn Homework Bottom Right The Idea Room


Candles are popular gifts especially in winter when you just want to stay indoors and be all cozy or as the Danish say- hygge.  This very simple bark candle tutorial can be found at Just a Smidgen and you can make it for very little money. Teacup candles are easy to do and can be fairly cheap. You can pick up a nice cup and saucer from a charity shop or elsewhere and follow the tutorial by Yes Missy. If you really want to impress then try marbling plain white candles they look amazing! You can find out how to do on Ela's Box Youtube video here.  Or if you like you can just apply marble contact paper onto a glass holder as seen on Cassandra's Youtube video here.  These sea shell candles can be made from scratch and even if you don't live near a beach you can pick them up from Baker Ross. Just follow the tutorial from She Knows

PHOTO CREDIT: Top Left Just a Smidgen Top Right Ela's Box Bottom Left  Yes Missy Bottom Right She Knows

D.I.Y Marker Mugs and Etched Glasses

There are a lot of sharpie mug tutorials on the net but the best ones show you how to make your design waterproof. For this you need buy oil based sharpie pens as seen in Four Thirty Four's Sharpie Pen Tutorial. This video by Style Novice also gives lots of handy tips.
Alternatively try using Deco Art glass paint pens like those used in My Crafty Spot to ensure that the design stays on permanently. You can also buy porcelain paint pens which will make your design dishwasher proof. Sharpies can also be used on glass like these wine glasses in gold and silver from A Belle Vie which look absolutely stunning! 

Another option is to etch a design onto glassware. Love Maegan made these cute heart glasses while Be Spangled Jewelry used the technique to personalise these mason jars with an initial.

PHOTO CREDIT Top Right; Love Magean Top Right Bottom Left: Bottom Right:

Wall Art

Wall art is something that can be very quick and inexpensive to make and yet seem very thoughtful at the same time.You can create word cloud art using lyrics from someone's favourite song, poem or quote or even words describing the qualities your special someone has using  free websites in minutes. Then all your need to do is print them out and frame them. You can find nice but cheap frames from Poundland, Wilkinson's, Ikea and Matalan. I used word it out for my word cloud below  (using lyrics from Santana's 'love of my life') and I've also used word art which repeats words. Worldle is very popular as well. You can also create pictures and quotes on free websites like Canva and Be Funky and print them off and frame. Another option is to search 'free printable quotes' into Google, print and frame them. The free printable quote below 'The best thing to hold onto is each other' can be found on the blog  It's Always Autumn. You can also channel your inner artist by creating scrabble tile art with photos alongside or arrange letters like a crossword or as an acrostic.  For inspiration take a look at this hobbycraft post  or hit up Pintrest. 

Top Left :The Elli Blog Top Right hobbycraft   Bottom Left and Right Nikki Smith @Lipstickdrawer 

Sunday, 3 December 2017

Estee Lauder Double Wear Light Foundation & Concealer Review

Estee Lauder Double Wear Light foundation is the lightweight sister of the popular Double Wear Foundation. It's a liquid foundation that has light to medium coverage. It has SPF10 protection and claims to have up to 15 hours wear. "Double wear is fresh, natural and comfortable. Controls oil, resists smudging and won't melt off through heat and humidity." It is oil free, photo friendly and fragrance free.

I've been using this foundation part of the summer and part of the autumn. At first I raved about it and loved it for the lighter wear and the fact that it actually matched my yellow toned skin which is very rare! I was matched to Intensity 1.0. (for reference I am the shade Warm Sand in Bobbi Brown and MAC NC15.) Normally my shade is in the middle but 1.0 is next to the lightest shade 0.5.  The shade selection is quite narrow with just nine shades compared with the original Double Wear foundation that comes in a whopping fifty shades! I'd be interested in the reasoning behind that. It does have SPF 10 which is good to have in a product but as it's so low it could be argued that it was pointless to include it. You should wear an additional SPF as the SPF10 in this foundation won't be enough.

Double Wear Light foundation has light to medium coverage. After using several brushes I found that Zoeva's Silk Finish brush was the best to use.  It dries to a matte finish. However if you use a Beauty Blender or a Real Technique's Sponge then the look is sheerer and a little dewy while the coverage is light. The colour doesn't oxidise on my skin. I have sensitive, combination skin and this never broke me out or irritated my skin. This foundation doesn't last the 15 hours stated on the packaging but it lasts a good 8-9 hours intact without primer. It doesn't crease and is transfer resistant.  It does cover the redness on my cheeks but may not completely cover acne.

The downside is that this foundation smells very strongly of chemicals however this does die down after application. I have asthma and it never got to the point where is was so overwhelming I couldn't use it. Another thing to note is that it has a very powdery finish and it definitely looks like you have makeup on. It's not really the natural look it promises but I think this can be remedied with a good finishing spray that takes away the powder look and makes the skin look more natural. When I tried to powder this foundation it seemed to take makeup off the skin rather than setting it- I'm not sure if this is a foundation that doesn't need setting? I have dry patches along my t-zone and I found it can cling on to dry patches.

As for the packaging it doesn't really scream I'm a luxurious £35 foundation! However the packaging is very practical since you can squeeze every last drop from the tube and even cut it up towards the end to use all the product up. The plastic tube is light and travel friendly unlike foundations in glass bottles. The gold lid makes it look a little more glamourous. I do wish that the bottle was a little transparent so you can see how much is left (although you can guess a little by the weight.)

I would buy Estee Lauder's Double Wear Light Foundation again, it matched me well, it's is oil-free and feels fairly lightweight on the skin. While it's on the pricier side with 30ml for £35, a little does go along way. It's also very accessible since most department stores around the world have an Estee Lauder counter.

On to Estee Lauder's Double Wear Stay In Place Concealer which I bought because I needed a lighter shade of  concealer in my stash to use with this foundation. The colour I have is 1W Light (warm)  but it's actually a bit too light for my skin. I apply this in upside down triangles from my eyes down to my cheek. However this concealer is incredibly hard to blend it feels dry and looks very chalky. I have found that the Primark toothbrush shaped makeup brush helps to blend this concealer the best. While this gives light to medium level of coverage (in the the photos you can see that it covers a light brown mole) when I applied it on my face I found that it didn't actually cover the dark circles around my eyes, even if I apply it in layers and with a corrector underneath. Perhaps my circles are darker? I feel that if I went and bought a darker shade I would still find this a nightmare to work with. I'm not a fan of the formula of this concealer it's difficult to use and it takes ages to dry and set. The good points of this concealer are that it's waterproof and contains spf even though it fairly low (spf10). My search for a good under eye concealer continues as I won't be buying this again.

Have you tried Estee Lauder Double Wear Light & Stay in Place Concealer? What did you think?
Also any recommendations for foundations for yellow toned skin would really help! 

Friday, 24 November 2017

16 Ways To Save Your Money On Christmas Gifts

1. Make a List and Check it Twice
No, I'm not quoting Taylor Swift lyrics. Making a list of who you need to buy for, how much money you have and how much you can spend on each person will make your life easier. Just like a supermarket shopping list it can make shopping trips shorter, saving you time as well as money as long as you stick to the list.

2. Secret Santa or Family Gift These both involve buying one gift. 

For Secret Santa, you are randomly assigned a person in the family to buy a present for. You can do this by pulling names from a hat. Once you know who you're buying a present for you have to keep it a secret until you open them on Christmas Day. If you're doing this with friends or colleagues then unwrap them on the day when you all meet up. You can have an agreed budget before you start.

Buying a family gift involves buying one present for the whole family to share. This could be a restaurant gift card, a cinema voucher, a Netflix superscription or a book of photos. It could be a board game or Nintendo Wii game that everyone can play.

3. If you have a large family or lots of people to buy presents for, then this tip from Kim Anderson from Thrifty Little Mom might help. She uses a three-tiered gift-giving system: Tier 1 is family. We do gift exchanges with each individual person in our immediate family, and set a budget for each person. Tier 2 is friends. We typically do a single-family gift for our friends, like movie tickets with free babysitting or a fun new game for them to play together. Tier 3 is neighbors and co-workers. I create homemade chocolate goodies in handmade packages. Once I establish my budgets for each tier and the people in them, I create a cash envelope for that tier. I only spend cash on what I buy for gifts, supplies and even wrapping paper. Once the cash in the envelope is gone, it’s gone!

Adoped from the U.S. Black Friday and Cyber Monday are days when all the shops have huge discounts in the last weekend of November to coincide with the Thanksgiving holiday. But before you leave the house or log on, research what you want to buy. Compare the prices between the different stores before you buy to check whether a bargain is really a bargain. Money Saving Expert's Mega Shop Bot will help you scan hundreds of shops to find you the best price.

5. Shopping tips. 
Set time limits on shopping. Go in, find presents and exit quickly. Also try shopping late in the evening (7-9pm) to beat the crowds.

6. Buy Expensive Presents First 
Then you know how much money you have to spend on the other gifts and don't run out of money or end up paying more than your agreed limit.

7. Pay with cash
You will be more aware of what you're spending.

8. Don't Touch Display Items
This is because handling an object creates possessive feelings according to researchers at UCLA and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. They found that holding an ordinary item like a coffee mug increased people's desire to buy it — and made them willing to pay 10% more for it. So "Look, but don't touch" to avoid spontaneous splurges.

9. Stop the Momentum 
The 'Momentum effect' is where we can get caught in a whirl of impulse buys. Buying one thing rushes into another and another even if they aren't on your Christmas list. To avoid this take a breather after every purchase. It's also an excuse to try out the seasonal drinks from Starbucks and Costa Coffee! This momentum effect also occurs online too so break up your shopping online as well.

10. Gifts With Purchase
The guilt free way to indulge yourself and buy a Christmas present at the same time! Buying a gift with purchase is a win win all round! You often have to spend a set amount to receive the gift but it's never extortionate.

11.  Use reward points 
There's never a better time to cash in those Boots and Nectar card points to spend on Christmas presents.

12. Zeek and Gift Card Granny
Zeek is a U.K. website that buys and sells discounted gift cards. If you're thinking of buying gift vouchers then you can get more bang for your buck. For example there might be a £50 cinema voucher that you can buy for £45. Gift cards range from House of Fraser, Apple App Store and itunes, Feel Unique, Bella Italia, Interflora, Odeon, Topshop, Mama and Papas and the O'neill's pub chain among others. All vouchers get sent to Zeek to review and check if they are legit and they also have good customer service.  If  you spend £100 on gift cards on Black Friday you get £10 cash back. 

Gift Card Granny is a U.S. website that also sells discounted gift cards. These include electronics (itunes and Sears) food outlets (Hard Rock Cafe and Krispy Kreme) Clothing (Hollister and Forever 21), travel (Holiday Inn) Gas (Mobil Gas) Beauty (Sephora) and many others. Their Black Friday deals can be found here.

13. Free Amazon gift cards
You can earn free Amazon gift vouchers for Christmas. Find out more from money saving blogger Emma Drew 10 places where you can Amazon Gift Cards here. These involve completing surveys, playing games, searching the internet and taking photos of your receipts.

14. Ebay 
You can find lots good deals on ebay. The ebay app makes it easier to bid on the go. If you search 'Ending Soonest' on the listings, then choose ones with fewer bidders you can pick up a real bargain. However don't forget to factor in the shipping times especially if you're buying anything from China, U.S. or Australia. 

15. D.I.Y Presents
I will be writing a longer post on this but D.I.Y presents are thoughtful, handmade presents such as having someones favourite Instagram photo framed or giving someone babysitting coupons offering to babysit in the new year.

16. Pouch 
Pouch is an app that you add to your browser that lets you know about voucher codes and deals as you shop. It works with Google Chrome, Apple Safari and Mozilla Firefox. It was featured on Dragon's Den in the U.K..

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Neal's Yard Remedies Wild Rose Hand Cream Review

Firstly I should say that Neal's Yard Remedies 'Wild Rose' Hand cream actually contains rosehip seed oil rather than rose water. Rosehip oil is great emollient (moisturiser) and skin conditioning agent (makes skin feel softer and look nice) that is rich in antioxidants (anti oxidants delay or prevent cell damage.) Along with the beeswax in the cream rose hip oil helps to reduce moisture loss to the skin and keep the skin barrier function in place. This hand cream also contains lots of essential oils including sweet almond oil, sunflower oil,  geranium oil, grapefruit peel oil, frankincense oil, ylang ylang flower oil and patchouli leaf oil. The hand cream consists of 92% organic ingredients and is certified by the Soil Association. There are also no parabens, synthetic colours or genetic modified organisms in this hand cream. It is vegetarian approved but presumably not vegan because of the beeswax it contains. This cream  is also a cruelty free product that is not tested on animals.

Neal's Yard Remedies claim that this hand cream 'deeply nourishes and softens to leave hands feeling soft and looking radiant...and protected.' The texture is really creamy without being thick and my hands felt really nourished afterwards and sooo soft! The beeswax creates a barrier to prevent any moisture loss from the environment, so that when you wash your hands some of the cream will remain on the skin. By creating a barrier it can be said it's protecting the skin from the environment. It takes awhile to fully absorb into the skin around 13-20 minutes and is more waxy rather  than greasy on the skin.

While I like the pretty packaging I think that they should make it more obvious that it contains Rose hip oil rather than rose water. This product works but personally I'm not a fan of the strong herbal scent so I wouldn't purchase this particular hand cream again, I'd choose the other hand creams from Neal's Yard in their range such as their Bee Lovely Hand cream which I've reviewed here.

Neal's Yard Wild Rose Hand Cream is available at Neal's Yard Remedies £10 for 50ml 

Sunday, 19 November 2017

12 Christmas Calendars That You Can Still Buy

Long ago if you wanted a Christmas advent calendar you only had the choice of buying chocolate ones or even one with just a picture behind each door (those were dire times.) Now (thank goodness) there's a variety of advent calendars out there alcoholic, tea, coffee, marshmallow, lastly beauty ones! While I love me some chocolate here are some beauty calendars that are still in stock ready to claim your heart.

Budget Calendars 

Mad Beauty

For some reason MAD Beauty have released two types of packaging for their calendar which I think is a bit confusing. They both have the same 24 mini beauty treats inside though. The contents include: two lipsticks (3.5g), powder compact (3.5g) three nail polishes (5ml), three lip glosses (6.5ml), two lip glosses (2.5ml), two eye shadows (3g), an eyeliner pencil (0.5g), lip liner pencil (0.5g), blusher (3.5g), blusher (2.5g), sharpener, toe Separator, lip brush, blush brush, nail file, applicator and festive nail stickers.
You can buy it here Find Me A Gift £16.99

Tanya Burr
This calendar has 12 limited edition gifts to mark the 12 days of Christmas. It's up to you how to open the calendar. You could open one door everyday from 1st December or one door every other day. You could even open it on Christmas Day.
The Price was originally £30 but Superdrug are selling them at £20 & Feel Unique £18.99 

Make Up Revolution London Advent Calendar 
This calendar contains 24 gifts inside. These include baked highlighters, bronzer, lipsticks, makeup brushes, eye shadow primer, liquid highlighter,  Revoholic Travel Mirror,  pressed highlighters, strobe balms and a full size exclusive Revoholic Eyeshadow palette! Originally this calendar was £50 but now it's been knocked down to £25.
Superdrug £25

Best Value Calendar

Latest In Beauty You Beauty Advent Calendar
The You Beauty Calendar from Latest In Beauty contains 24 gifts that add up to over £230 worth of premium beauty products! These include ESPA, The White Company, NIP+FAB, Ciate, Bare Minerals, Make Up Revolution, Gatineau, Leighton Denny, Lipcote, Rodial, REN Skincare, This Works, Charles Worthington, Look Better Feel Better and Oribe. You can see the exact products here.
If you  Order the Latest In Beauty You Advent Calendar before November 22nd the price is £55

Luxury Calendars
I chose these two 'luxury' calendars because I felt that being under £100 they would be more affordable. I think that you get more for your buck with the two calendars below.

Selfridges Beauty Advent Calendar 
For a department store beauty calendar this is probably the cheapest at £70. The Calendar has 24 gifts with a total value of £250. I didn't include this in the best value category because it's one of the pricier ones I'm writing about but I do think this is exceptionally good value.
Inside the Calendar you will find (spoilers ahead!)

Skincare & Body
Rodial Super Acid Rush Peel 20ml
St Tropez Gradual Tan Tinted Body Lotion 50ml
Peter Thomas Roth Cucumber Gel Mask 30ml
Omorovicza Refining Facial Polisher
Caudalie Vinosource Moisturising Sorbet 15ml
Molton Brown Rhubarb and Rose Body Wash 100ml

Lord & Berry Travel Cheek (blusher) Crayon
Eve Lom Cleanser
Dr Dennis Gross Alpha Beta extra Strength (3)
Dr Roebucks Deluxe Face Moisturiser 20ml
Erborian CC Cream
Cover FX Mattifying Primer 5ml
Beautyblender LINER.DESIGNER

Blink Brow Exfoliator
Eylure Lash 101
Eyeko Deluxe Black Magic Mascara
IT Cosmetics Brow Powder Eye Brow Pencil 0.7g
3INA The Pen Eyeliner

NYX Professional Makeup Soft Matte Lip Cream

Ouai Finishing Créme 0.5oz

Deborah Lippmann Cuticle Oil 8ml
Cowshed Soothing Hand Cream 50ml

Tweezerman Clipper

This Works Pillow Spray

This calendar below is available at Selfridges £70

Look Fantastic Advent Calendar Beauty In Wonderland. 
This advent calendar includes 25 gifts, nine full-sized products and sixteen deluxe samples. In total nineteen of  these are exclusive to Look Fantastic. Worth £300 it gives you the chance to explore new as well as cult products. The packaging is simply stunning, making the experience of opening this calendar a really special, magical treat. When Christmas is over you can use the beautiful case, complete with the looking glass as a vanity unit to store your beloved beauty treats and essentials
Look Fantastic £79 

Nail Polish Calendars

Primark 12 Days Of Christmas Nail Polish Advent Calendar
This budget nail calendar contains 12 amazing nail polishes.
Available at Primark in stores £10.

Ciate Mini Mani Month Advent Calendar

This advent calendar includes 24 gifts that includes seventeen Mini Paint Pots (5ml), two Mini treatments (5ml), topcoat (5ml), two glitter toppers (5ml), nail file and full size Glitter (13.5ml.) If you buy from Very you have the option of  spreading the cost out over the months ahead.
Look Fantastic £50 Very £50 

Essie Nail Polish Advent 24 Days Christmas Countdown
A 24 day advent calendar containing a fun festive mix of colour, gel couture and nail care products. It includes seven nail polishes (a mix of core colour and gel couture), thirteen mini nail polishes, one mini nail polish remover and three Essie mani surprises. Also contains five shades exclusive to this calendar. The price has been knocked down to half price from £80 to £40!
Superdrug £40 

Cruelty Free Calendar

NYX Cosmetics Lippy Countdown 
This calendar contains 24 days of lippies!  This includes NYX's Butter Glosses™,  Soft Matte Lip Creams and more in this limited-edition box of goodies.
Feelunique £50.

More Calendars

12 Days of Beauty Calendar by Feel Unique
Feel Unique's 12 days of Advent Calendar includes brands from Elizabeth Arden, NYX, Jurlique, Palmer’s and Rimmel and more. The combined value is worth £90.
Feelunique Advent Calendar, £35

Amazon Beauty Advent Calendar
The Amazon Beauty Advent Calendar contains a combination of 24 products and deluxe samples from favourite beauty brands including Maybelline, Rituals and John Frieda. The total sum of the products comes to £185! The marble and gold packaging is so gorgeous, I'm thinking of painting my own version for backgrounds in my blog photos! 

Any Calendars catch your eye? Which Calendars will you be buying? 

Friday, 6 October 2017

Katy Perry Killer Queen Perfume EDP Review

Hello everyone! So what are your opinions on celebrity perfumes? Generally the whole celebrity perfume trend has past me by. However I do own Sarah Jessica Parker's NYC which I bought for the fruity scent and the fact that it was fairly cheap. (Definitely not for the bottle.) While I love some of Katy Perry's songs including Fireworks, E.T. , Rise and Swish Swish, I'm not a devoted fan. However right now I seem to be writing this to a Katy Perry playlist on Youtube!

Katy Perry's Killer Queen perfume was inspired by the lyrics of Freddie Mercury's 'Killer Queen.' She explained "Freddie Mercury painted the lyrics of this woman who I wanted to be. She seemed very powerful and she captivated a room as she walked in..I think I'm falling finally into the woman Freddie painted."  I like the fact that the name she gave her perfume was personal and not a random name that sounded cute or cool.  The perfume is described as sophisticated, edgy, powerful and a delicious scent.

The perfume bottle is just so stunning! Quite simply: The. bottle. is. everything!  I love the gorgeous ombre ruby design, it completely matches the concept Killer Queen because the lid looks like the top of a royal orb. The crest on the cap has Katy's initials and on the reverse side there is a picture of two cats which is cute. The bottle looks so pretty and classy on a dressing table. Because of the diamond shaped bottle it has to sit on it's side so it does take up more space than other perfumes. You can keep the perfume in the packaging but it's a bit bulky and the plastic doesn't do the magnificent bottle any justice. It's a shame it doesn't come with a elegant stand to hold the bottle but I found a quick  D.I.Y Perfume Stand Tutorial by Judy from This and That which looks easy to do, so I'll probably give that a go at some stage.

This was given to me by a friend, it isn't a perfume I would usually choose myself as I prefer fruity and oceanic scents. The opening notes are plum, bergamot and forest fruits. This is followed by the middle notes jasmine sambac, frangipani and celosia. Finally the end notes are praline, patchouli and cashmeran. The initial spray is quite sweet and smells similar to Lancome's La Vie Est Belle and then becomes more musky. At the the end I can smell the patchouli, cashmeran and praline.  Although the scent is described as fruity- I would say it's more of a sweet, spicy and gourmand scent as it smells sweet like caramel which is probably the praline I'm picking up.The perfume is hard to pin down as it changes through the day. Despite this it's not a particularly unique smell. I think the scent does match the name because it's quite adult and sophisticated with a spicy, dark note. It's a warm scent that would be good to wear during autumn/winter and the spicy notes gives it more of a sexy scent to wear in the evenings. I've read reviews complaining that the perfume doesn't last very long but on me it lasts an average of 6-8 hours which I think is pretty standard for a perfume. The sillage or 'perfume cloud' is soft to moderate, initially for the first few hours other people can smell it but after that it wears closer to the skin. I think it only comes in Eau De Parfum.

Although it's not my holy grail perfume I enjoy wearing it and I like the fact that I have another evening perfume to wear (the only other one I have is Ghost Night.) Now among my fresh and fruity fragrances I have something more spicy and sexy in my collection.  It is an affordable perfume and good value for money as you can pick up larger bottles fairly cheaply (apart from Boots.). The bottle looks luxurious for such a low price point. I think if you like sweet and spicy perfumes or gourmand scents you'd like this.

The Perfume Shop 100ml EDP £12.99
ASDA Direct 100ml EDP £18
Argos 100ml EDP £19.99
Fragrance Direct Gift Set 30ml EDP £12.99
FOR U.S.A. Target 3.4 fl OZ EDP $13.99  
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