Saturday, 26 April 2014

How to apply makeup correctly - a flawless finish!

Hey guys! The weather is looking lush today, isn't it?! I decided to make the most off the weather today by meeting up with one of my old friends at a local newly refurbished pub, as it's a safe and clean environment for Elijah too. I managed to do my makeup really well for this occasion, so I thought I would share with you my tips and tricks for this daily makeup look! This is how my makeup went today, completely unedited - I'm actually quite proud I did it so well! 

So, to prepare my skin, I cleansed and moisturised using the Clinique foaming face wash, and the Clean and Clear dual action moisturiser. My skin is quite prone to becoming oily so these oil free, anti-blemish products are perfect for clearing up my skin. I then used the Naturally Radiant 2-in-1 moisturiser and serum - serum is so important for keeping your skin looking fresh. As a final skin care prep, I applied Garnier's tinted under-eye caffeine roll on under my eyes.
I then used Maybelline's Baby Skin pore eraser primer, which is definitely my budget-buy primer - I used bareMinerals Prime Time primer before, but this one feels so similar, and is also oil-free, as well as only being a fraction of the price! Makeup-wise, for my face I used bareMinerals Ready Foundation - this is such a great foundation, I will definitely repurchase it when my current one runs out, and as you can see it just gives you such a flawless matte finish, it is the best foundation I've ever used, and all you do with it is buff it on to your face using the Flawless Face Brush, and it literally takes about thirty seconds. I then contoured my face with Bourjois Delice de Soleil bronzing powder, and lightly dusted my Sleek blusher on to the apples of my cheeks - all still using the bareMinerals Flawless Face Brush! 
For my eyes, I started by defining my eyebrows using a Rimmel eyebrow pencil, by using light strokes and brushing them into place. I then applied my eyeshadow (I was short on time, so just blended it out using my fingers). I used my Stila eyeshadow palette, with the shades Kitten on the inner corners of my eyes, and Gilded Sandstone on the outer corners. I then applied a pair of false lashes (these were just ones I bought from Primark), and left them to dry for a few minutes before applying my Maybelline Lasting Drama Gel eyeliner over the lash line. Lastly, I applied two coats of Maybelline's The Falsies mascara.
For my lips, I prepped using my Nivea rose lip balm, and finished with a coat of Lancôme Juicy Tube lip gloss in Fraise.

For my hair, I just clipped my fringe back, and spritzed in hairspray while my hair was upside down, for a little volume as my hair is so flat. The top I'm wearing is £6 from Primark, which I featured in my 'Mini Spring haul!' Blog. So, I hope you guys have had a great afternoon, mine has been lovely, and spent with perfect company! 

Sammii-Jane x

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Skin care reviews - Clean and Clear, and Clinique Anti-blemish set

Hey guys! So, I have been meaning to write up my skin care reviews for a while now, but only now am I comfortable enough to show off my skin, completely makeup free, and unedited! I am very self conscious about it, as during my pregnancy my hormones went crazy and my skin became very red and inflamed. I know my skin is still a bit blemishy, but it is so much better compared to how it used to be!

The picture on the left is how my skin used to look - I know a lot of people say that it wasn't so bad, but to me it was horrible, I was constantly upset with how I looked and was trying various things to fix it, diets, drinking lots of water, using a lot of tea tree products, different skin care brands, and the two brands that I am going to review are Clean and Clear as my budget brand, and Clinique as my high-end brand. 

I firstly used Clean and Clear as I was apprehensive to shell out too much on Clinique products. Clean and Clear products are sold at around £2.50 individually from Boots and Superdrug. I bought the Dual action moisturiser, the Advantage daily scrub, and the Cleansing lotion (not pictured). I used these three products twice a day, once in the morning, and once at night. The Cleansing lotion smelt, and felt, very alcoholic, and had a stinging sensation when I applied it, and although I used these products for a month, the Cleansing lotion was far too harsh for my skin, and reddened it even more, and definitely made it worse. So I stopped using it every day, and am now using it every other day instead, which works a lot better for my skin. The Daily scrub, was also far too harsh and scratchy for my skin, and made it impossible for my skin to heal as it was just scratching it off. The Dual action moisturiser is the only product from the range that I do still currently use, as I do find it to be a really decent anti-blemish moisturiser. It has a light cooling sensation when applied to your skin, and I just feel really fresh faced, and clean when I use it.

The Clinique Anti-blemish set (£25), is a product I am absolutely in love with! I have been using this for over the past month, and still have loads of the foaming cleanser left, even though I've been using it twice a day! I would definitely re-purchase the foaming cleanser, it is so good, and because it's fragrance and irritant free it's really calming on your skin. 
The cleansing lotion is also really good, it's less harsh than the Clean and Clear cleansing lotion, and was also much kinder for my skin. I have oily skin, and this lotion contains talcum powder, which is mattifying, and works really, really, well. I would say the Clinique cleansing lotion feels clinically clean, but doesn't sting, or hurt your skin. I'm unsure about re-purchasing the product, but that is purely because of the price, as ideally I would like to find something cheaper. But if money isn't a worry for you, then this is definitely a great set to try!
The moisturiser, however, is a big miss for me - it was so drying and not at all moisturising! I think it still is a really great set though, because that is the only negative I experienced, but it still did clear up my skin!

So, from both brands, I still conjunctivley use the Clean and Clear Dual action moisturiser, and the Clinique foaming cleanser. I would still like to find a cheaper cleansing lotion, but as the Clinique one does actually work for me I'm apprehensive to change up my skin care routine. I personally think the combination of these products have cleared up my skin so much - and I can now leave my house with just BB cream on my face, and I'm not afraid to answer the door makeup free to the postman anymore either! I used to have to get up before everyone else in the morning to apply a full face of heavy makeup, and I don't need to anymore, and I feel so much happier and more comfortable with myself! 

So, I hope that if you guys have been having skin care problems, that you find something that does work for you really soon, and if you're not having skin care problems, that your skin stays that way! Hope you guys have a great weekend!
Sammii-Jane x

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Mini Spring haul!

Hey guys! My goodness the weather has been crazy today, hasn't it?! Sunny one minute, raining the next! And unfortunately for me, I went out shopping today in only a one-layer chiffon lightweight kimono - I got soaked and it was freezing! Luckily Elijah was kept snug in his little blanket, and slept through most of the weather anyway! 

Here was today's shopping look! I got this kimono-style jacket from Tesco for £14. I know a lot of people dislike supermarket brand clothing, and generally I do too, but the element that I do like about it is that you can actually get some really nice things, but because it's not widely searched in for clothes, no one ever has the same things you do - and people do ask where I got them from! A lady stopped me in the street today and asked after my kimono jacket!

For today's haul, I've been really wanting to get a few nice tops and makeup to wear for this beautiful Spring weather! Spring might actually have to be one of my favourite seasons - I love the blue sky, cherry blossoms blooming on trees, daffodils opening up, and the green, green grass! So, to celebrate, I got these tops from Primark, which were £6 each. I'm really tired of always wearing black (after my pregnancy, the only clothes I ever seem able to find are always black) and I really wanted some tops with colour. I know one of the tops pictured is black, but it does have large white and pink daisies! 

I also bought a new small candle jar for my window as Primark were selling them for only £1! In hindsight I should have bought more! I think candles make a room look so much more cosy and inviting, and I'm really keen to make a nice family home for Elijah! 

Makeup-wise... Of course I went into Boots! I'm having a real love for the Real Techniques makeup brushes, and I do plan to buy a new brush/set every month to build up my collection, if I can afford it. I got the Retractable Bronzing brush last month, and today I bought the Expert Face brush. It's so soft and seems like such a good makeup brush, and, lets be honest, it does seem like THE brush to have at the moment. You can use it for powders and foundations and gives a flawless finish. I think you could also maybe use it as a stippling brush, I want to try using it for my new Benefit Posietint cheek stain.
Boots were also doing a special offer on these Benefit products, £9.95 for three sample products: the Porefessional, Posietint, and Bad Gal mascara. I've been wanting to try these products for a while. I've used the Porefessional before and it's my favourite primer as it's tinted, so it blurs your imperfections and pores, whereas with a clear primer you can still see through it. The Posietint is a paler pink, where Lollitint is a stronger shade. The Bad Gal mascara will be interesting to try too, as I do love a good mascara! I can't wait to try this makeup look together, because on a good skin day it could potentially be a full set, as the Porefessional will smooth your skin tone, the Posietint is a stain that can be used on both your cheeks and lips, and the mascara will give your eyes subtle definition. This will be a very light makeup look, but I do really love natural, fuss free makeup. As long as my skin looks clear, my eyebrows are defined, and my nails are neat, I'm perfectly comfortable to just go out wearing only mascara and lip balm. I do have to use a tinted caffeine roll-on to cover the dark circles under my eyes too though, but I generally do wear a very light cover of makeup on a day-to-day basis as a new mum! I'd love to do more with my hair, but I barely have time for my face (as you can see!...)

So, these are the few little bits that I got today, as well as a truck load of more baby supplies! Elijah goes through baby milk like anything, and I'm always losing his dummies and burp cloths! It is so hectic as a new parent but I wouldn't change it for the world! I hope you guys are having a great week, 
Sammii-Jane x


Monday, 21 April 2014

Super easy five-minute makeup!

Hey guys! I hope you've been having a great four-day weekend! So, I'm not going to lie to you - I don't do amazing, elaborate makeup every day. As a new mother, I need makeup that can be done really quickly, and really easily, as half the time it's done one-handed, whilst trying to rock a screaming newborn to sleep! So here is my daily hair and makeup, which takes altogether about ten minutes, right from cleansing and brushing teeth, to the complete, finished look. 

Here's the makeup look - nothing fancy, but just clearer, fresher skin, a light blush, defined brows and lashes, and a glossy pink lip. My hair is just put back into a bun at the back of my head, and sometimes I like to accessorise with a flower hair clip if I'm feeling particularly girly! Today though, is a simple day, my son hasn't given me a lot of time to feel pretty, just enough time to make myself look slightly better! 

Here is the makeup I've used - I've previously cleansed with Clean and Clear's Daily Scrub, and moisturised with the same brands Dual Moisturiser. I've also used Superdrug's Naturally Radiant 2-in-1 Moisturiser and Serum for extra moisture. I've applied Garnier's tinted under-eye roll on to cover the dark circles under my eyes, and then prepped my skin with Maybelline's Baby Skin Pore Eraser. 
For my skin, I use the bareMinerals Ready Foundation, which you just buff onto your skin and takes literally about thirty seconds. I then use a stippling brush to apply my Sleek blusher (in the shade Golden Rose).
For my eyes, I lightly define my brows with Rimmel's Eyebrow pencil (in the shade Light Brown), and then pump my lashes a few times with the curler before applying Maybelline's The Falsies mascara - I apply two to three coats.
For my lips, I use a balm to soften them first - I've been using Palmers Cocoa Butter Formula lip balm recently, which is really moisturising and smells so good! I then use a Lancôme Juicy Tube (in the shade Fraise), which just gives a nice pink glossy tint. 
For my hair, I don't get a lot of time to play around with it - surely not enough to actually straighten it - so I just brush it through, and run some hair primer through so that it's vaguely compliant for what I want to do with it. I then style it into a messy bun and clip my fringe back, and finish with the Elnett Satin Touch Hairspray. 

This is my finished look, and I hope you're not all too sad about returning to work tomorrow! 
Blog soon, Sammii-Jane x

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Kitchen haul!

Hey guys! So, I wanted to do a different post today - I hope you don't mind! I've been having a real urge of late to bake something, but with a newborn it's difficult to find the time! Luckily, today I did manage to make time as Elijah's been sleeping so well! 
I bought a few new baking bits today, as when I had looked at my old loaf tins and not seen much else I was feeling very uninspired - but when I went to the shops today I saw loads of cute baking equipment, and bought pretty much everything in the range! Look how pretty it is! I bought a dry-ingredient sifter, measuring cups, a spatula, and weighing scales, all in a pretty pastel mint colour, and an oven mitt, and two new tea towels. Everything I bought is matching and it's just going to look so pretty in my kitchen, I can't wait to set it all up nicely! 

I really love loaf cakes, they are my favourite type of cake as they're just so easy to make, it's not a "fussy" bake, and they always look really good when you sprinkle some dried fruit, nuts and seeds on top, and let it brown a little. So, as I managed to find a spare half hour to make a cake, I decided to make a breakfast loaf, as I don't always find time to eat breakfast in the mornings as my son's needs come at a much higher priority. 

I put raisins, sultanas, and dried chopped apricots into the cake mixture, and topped it with pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and a few more raisins. I had wanted to add some honey as well, but I didn't have any in the cupboards so I just made it without! 
It's just such an easy and cheap thing to make, I did just use Tesco's value range cake mix and dried fruit, which I think cost me around 67p in total? The seeds were slightly more expensive at around £2 each but they are decently sized pots so they do last for a good few bakes! 
I know, I know, it's terrible to admit I used a cake mix packet - but I haven't actually found a good basic cake recipe that works for me yet! Also, I don't really have the time right now to experiment with cake recipes, I just need the recipe to work, and edible results within half an hour! 

So, here is my breakfast loaf cake, and my new baking purchases, and I really hope you are now feeling inspired to bake something! I hope you're having a great week!

Sammii-Jane x

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

My week in pictures 15.04.14

Hey guys! So, I thought I'd show you what I've been up to this past week, again in the form of pictures! I've mostly been concentrating on my health and physical well being in between taking care of Elijah - I was in a lot of pain upon leaving the hospital after the birth so have been pushing myself to feel okay again within a short period of time. It's normal to still hurt up to two weeks after the birth, and I'm coming up to the end of my two weeks. It was excruciating for the first few days but then I started taking paracetamol and codeine to ease the pain, and I've gradually been able to take Elijah on longer and longer walks in the pram. 

As you can see, I've dyed my hair and taken my first picture with Elijah! He wasn't particularly interested in the camera and preferred to take a nap! After the pregnancy and labour photos I felt so disgusting about how I looked, I know no one has flattering labour photos but mine were awful,and I couldn't wait to just chuck on a box of hair dye, as I couldn't do that through my pregnancy. 

I love the colour, I feel so much fresher now, I really hated the blonde hair I had before! This was a Perfect 10 colour in Light Brown, and I actually really love the shade, as it can appear both dark and light depending on the sunlight.

I've also FINALLY seen Frozen - I really wanted to see it while I was pregnant but no one wanted to see it with me! So once we'd gotten Elijah to sleep, my mum and I rented the movie from the telly - and shared a giant bar of Galaxy! Don't you just love Elsa's glam makeover in the movie?! That dress!

I've also made a few beauty purchases! So, I use the Clean and Clear skin care range, and I really like it as it has sorted out my skin problems, but I find the moisturiser quite mattifying, and although my skin is oily, the moisturiser doesn't do a lot to keep my skin moisturised. So, I found the Olay beauty fluid - I've actually never seen it before, but my mum said it had been around for years, and her mother used to use it every day! It was on offer in Superdrug for £3, and when I swatched it on my hand it was just so softening, and as it claims it's suitable for normal/dry/combo skin, I thought I would give it a try, and I intend to use it over my anti-blemish moisturiser.
I initially only went in Superdrug to look for an eye creme, but I ended up choosing the Garnier tinted eye roll-on instead, as it was also on offer at £5. I've used this before and I do really like it, but I could never justify spending £10 on this when you can get a good concealer for half the price. But as I'm trying to keep my makeup lighter/more natural, I know I do really need a good eye product to stop me looking like a zombie! 
I also picked up a Palmers Cocoa Butter lip balm - as you know I'm a huge Palmers fan, I love the smell and feel of if on my skin. As this lip balm was (you guessed it!) also on offer (at £1.26), I just had to get one. I don't really know why I did pick it up, in hindsight, as I only ever use the Burt's Bees lip wax anyway - but I suppose it's nice to have the option!

I'll be doing a couple of skin care reviews really soon (I've been testing both Clean and Clear, and Clinique), and also a Frozen-style Elsa makeup tutorial, so keep an eye out for those! Hope you're having a great week!

Sammii-Jane x

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Beauty haul! And a couple of surprises...

Hey guys! Really, really, sorry I haven't posted anything in a while! My son is now one week old, and I was in hospital for five days previous to that as my labour took forever!! But, in the midst of having a screaming newborn, and changing his dirty nappies, I have still been able to make a few lovely little beauty purchases, so I thought I would share with you what I've bought this time! 

I took Elijah for a walk into our local town centre and of course, ended up in Boots, and Superdrug! I had wanted to try the Sleek blushers for a while, as they're incredibly popular on literally everyone's beauty blog. A lot of bloggers have said they are very similar to the NARS blushers and have really good pigmentation, so I picked one up in the shade Golden Rose. I was disappointed to bring it home and find out the powder was broken inside, but I will still try it with an open mind! I also picked up one of the Luminous face powders, I hadn't intended to but I swatched it in store and it was just so pretty, it was a really good colour match for my pale skin and had a subtle shimmer which looked really good for making you look more awake and refreshed. 
There was also a sale on Superdrug's own body butters, and I believe you can never have enough body butters! I do have loads sitting around in a drawer at home but it was on a special offer at £1.99, and I just couldn't resist! It has a coconut and sweet lime scent and just smells really fresh but comforting! My final purchase from Superdrug was new eyelash curlers, as my current ones are really old and overused, and my lashes keep getting stuck to it! 
The mini mango set was the only thing I purchased from Boots, it was in the sale for £1.50, and consists of a mango scented shower gel, and matching body butter. I love anything mango scented, and although I don't really need it, it was too cheap to say no to! 

Now, I know I promised you a surprise, so here goes... 

This is the new bag and notebook I bought, because I am going to college! I'll be doing a course in Cosmetic Make-Up so I thought that this bag was just really fitting! You probably think I'm crazy to be going to college when I have a newborn son, but the course is only a few hours, one evening a week, and my mum is happy to help me out with looking after Elijah in that time. 

I also bought a make up set for the college course (but also to play around with and familiarise myself with now). It's a set of four makeup palettes, with a mix of eyeshadows, face colours, blushers, and lip colours. It contains a few brushes too, but I have my eye on a full makeup brush set too. They are cheap sets, but when they are purely for college, myself, and experimental use, they're fine to use for now. I'll show you better pictures when it arrives, I'm actually really excited to use it! I don't have a huge palette of colours as my makeup is generally very neutral tones, but I see loads of colours in this set!

So, these have been my recent purchases, I hope you like them! Now, I'm also going to talk about something else that is completely off-topic, but so incredibly important too. I spoke to a lovely charity worker in the street earlier, I generally try to avoid them (everyone else does too!), but I am glad I stopped today. It was the charity NDCS, which is the National Deaf Children's Society. They are the only deaf children's charity in the UK, and I wasn't aware of this. For something that can affect so many people, I was very surprised to find out there weren't more charities of a similar nature. As I've just had a child, and Elijah still hasn't passed his hearing test (he's due a retake in the next couple of weeks), this did concern me, and when I do get more money through it's a charity I will definitely be supporting! If you have a free minute I really would recommend that you Google it even if you don't have money, because awareness and support are fundamental to any charity. 

I hope you're having a great week, Sammii-Jane x

Saturday, 5 April 2014

My week in pictures!

Hey guys! Really, really sorry I haven't posted anything in a while! Regular readers will already know that I was pregnant - this past week has been spent in the hospital giving birth! I had a few complications so had to be induced at 38 weeks, but am proud to announce I have given birth to a beautiful, healthy baby boy!

This is my son, Elijah Henry, born at 22.13pm, on Wednesday 2nd April 2014. Here we are having cuddles with me, my mum, and my dad - they were my birth partners! Elijah is such a sweet baby, he cuddles up to everyone! We're bonding really well, I absolutely adore him! He sleeps well (sometimes!), and he's feeding okay. 

Thank you everyone for your support, I'll get back to writing beauty blogs soon! Sorry for the natural photos - they're not the most flattering after just giving birth! I hope you've all had an amazing week as I had! 

Sammii-Jane x