Christmas beauty haul 2016 ❤️

Well hello to you my reader chums! I hope everybody had a lovely Christmas in whichever way you celebrate. This year, I received an array of beautiful presents from family and friends, so wanted to share a few of my favourite beauty items. I'm incredibly grateful and thrilled with all my presents, I feel truly spoilt by my loved ones. I can't believe this year has nearly come to an end and 2017 is looming. 

Let's take a look at all the products:

what I got for christmas 2016

 what beauty bits I got for Christmas

Makeup

Charlotte Tilbury 'Glastonberry' lipstick - If you've been following me for a while, then you'd know I have a massive obsession with berry/burgundy toned lipsticks especially in the cooler months. One I've always wanted to get my hands on is the much hyped 'Glastonberry' by Charlotte Tilbury. Lucky to say, I finally did and couldn't wait to give it a go. The shade is the perfect burgundy colour, it glides on like a dream and is comfortable to wear despite the matte finish. It's my first Charlotte Tilbury product and I can't wait to try out more - the rose gold packaging is beautiful.

Nars 'Cruella' lipstick - Another lipstick was a rich coloured red in the shade 'Cruella by Nars. I saw Tanya Burr mention this in many videos a while back and had my eye on it for a while so was ecstatic when I received it. Like the previous lipstick, it was my first chance of testing out any Nars product. The colour is a slightly dark, intense red with a matte finish. The application glides on easy with the pencil design and its pigmentation is faultless.

Kiko Cosmetics Enigma lipstick in '03' - The third lipstick I received was from one of my favourite brands, Kiko. All the products I've used previously are made of such good quality and give top notch results. This colour is on the berry tree of lipsticks with a slightly more mauve tone and satin finish. The packaging is very sleek and even has a magnetised black tube!

Jack Wills lipstick - The last lipstick, I got in a Jack Wills gift set with a gingham style coin purse. The shade is a very toned down, peach and baby pink colour with a sheen over the top making it an ideal lipstick for everyday use.

Urban Decay All Nighter setting spray - I've seen the Urban Decay All Nighter spray hyped across everything social media platform so was beyond excited when I found it under the tree! Urban Decay is my all time favourite brand and I'm looking forward to see if this product lives up to all the raving reviews.

Beauty sets

Zoella Beauty Gingerbread set - At Christmas time, all my favourite scents come out including everything ginger which the Zoella Beauty Christmas range was based around this year. The set I received contained a gingerbread body cream and mist. I'm going to be smelling like a bakery all year round now!

Soap and Glory gift set - Soap and Glory are my all time favourite for shower products. This beauty set provides the famous 'Hand food' cream, 'Clean on me' shower gel, a scrub and wash mit. As they're all travel sized products, it'll be perfect for upcoming adventures.

Snowmen bath fizzers - These were the cutest stocking filler from my Nan. I'm looking forward to seeing them fizz away in my bath!

Cupcake bath bombs - In the stripy red box are three different cupcake style bath bombs, all with different intricate detailing. There's two flower ones and another with swirly icing plus sprinkles on the top. I think they're so unique and smell heavenly, I'm looking forward to the lingering scent they leave in the bath.

Lush products

Dragons Egg - My favourite bath bomb of all time, Dragon's Egg holds the most incredible, long-lasting citrus based scent. It explodes, leaving a bath full of orange, yellow and gold glitter water - what more could you want?

The Luxury Lush pud - This bath bomb is one of the best Christmas ones they do every year! It fills the water with an array of multi colours and lingering musky/citrus scent.

The Magic of Christmas bubble bar - I've wanted to give this bubble bar a try for a while but never picked it up. The stick is packed with all my favourite Christmas warm scents including cinnamon. The bubble bar idea is to swirl it under warm water, creating a heap of bubbles and using the star stick multiple times over.
Perfume - Last but not least is the Juicy Couture perfume. I'm not the best at describing perfume scents, however it has a very sweet and rich smell to it but isn't too overwhelming. I reckon it'll suit a variety of tastes, as it has that muskiness to it also. If you ever has One Directions 'Moments' perfume, these two are really similar.

I hope you enjoyed my 2016 Christmas beauty haul! Which is your favourite present you received?

Thank you for reading <3



The Christmas Tag!

Well hello to you my reader chums! Presents are wrapped, the cupboards are stocked up and festive films are on a loop, Christmas has truly begun. As the special day is under 2 days away, I thought it was the perfect time to do the Christmas tag! The lovely Meg has tagged me so make sure to go on over and read her post.

Christmas countdown


Let's get into the questions:

1. What is your favourite Christmas movie? 

There's so many Christmas films I absolutely adore but the two that spring to mine, I watch on repeat every year are the Grinch and Elf. Both make me laugh and cry at the same time!

2. What are your favourite Christmas colours? 

When it comes to fashion in general, I'm very monochrome with burst of colour popping out in autumn as I love the mustards and burnt oranges ( as well as summer). During Christmas, I wear a lot of tartan print scarfs and burgundy coloured jumpers. It tends to be colours like navy or burgundy I love most in the Christmas season.

3. Do you like to stay in your PJ’s or dress up for Christmas?

I've always seen the temptation of staying in your PJs all day at Christmas, however every year I love to plan out my outfit and wear one of my favourite OOTDs of that winter month. It can be a dress, pinafore or even a jumper I've been loving with jeans. As long as it's paired with a red lip, I'm good to go.

4. If you could only buy one person a Christmas present this year, who would it be? 

That's a tricky one, I think it would have to be my dad. He does so much for us all and I wish I could give that amount back.

5. Do you open your presents Christmas Eve or Christmas morning?

We're a very traditional family and open them on Christmas Day. When we wake up, we'll open the sack on our bed full of small gifts from Father Christmas then after dinner, unwrap our main gifts under the tree from family/friends.

6. Have you ever built a gingerbread house? 

Unfortunately not, however I say I will every year! I made gingerbread men this year if that counts?

7. What do you like to do on your Christmas break?

I only took a few days off this year for Christmas but usually I like to chill at home with my family, eat every bit of good food and watch films. Then my twin and I go on our annual Bluewater sales shop a few days after Christmas!

8. Any Christmas wishes?

A bit cliché but health and happiness for all my loved ones is all I could ever wish for.

9. Favourite Christmas Smells?

I love this question! It has to be cinnamon and ginger, they're my favourite spices and at Christmas time come out in full force with candles, diffusers plus the delicious treats. Gingerbread men and cinnamon sprinkled on a hot chocolate - delicious!

10. Favourite Christmas meal or treat? 

You can never fault the food at Christmas, its the main time of the year I fully indulge in everything. I have to say my favourite meal is Christmas lunch,  nothing better than delicious roast potatoes, meat and vegetables. I have such a sweet tooth so I love all the desserts Christmas brings; yule log, stollen, panettone and endless amounts of quality streets.

I tag:





I hope you enjoyed this Christmas tag post! What are you most looking forward to on Christmas day?

Thank you for reading <3



Smoky green eyes: Festive makeup

Well hello to you my reader chums! Christmas is under a week away so whether you want to try a new makeup look for the big day itself or have any parties beforehand, I've put together a smoky, olive toned eye to share with you. Instead of my usual go to gold/copper eye with a red lip, I thought this look was a bit more daring, especially for those who love a smoked up shadows.

Here's how to achieve the smoky green eyes:

Christmas makeup ideas

Christmas day makeup

Sephora shadow stick:

To begin and ensure my eye make up lasts the entire day, I applied Sephora shadow stick in 'Kaki'. As it's in a pencil shape, you can easily draw it on and blend out with your fingers. I like to take the stick all over the lid and into the crease, blending it out to achieve an ultra shimmery, khaki base. The consistency is incredibly creamy and a dream to blend onto the eyes. It's highly pigmented and densely packed with shimmer, ideal to use in the festive season for a top notch glittery eye.

Too Faced Chocolate Bar palette:

For more intensity and to darken the look further, I packed on shade 'Gilded Ganache' all over the lid, a dark and olive coloured shimmery shade. Then for extra smokiness, blended out the shade 'Triple Fudge', a matte, khaki colour on the outer corner and under my bottom lash line. To finish, I applied shade 'White chocolate' on the inner third of my eye, for a brightening effect.


Christmas day makeup ideas

Lips:

Since the eyes were quite intense, I toned down the look slightly with a nude lip, Nyx matte lip cream in 'Cannes'.

How to do a smoky eye

I hope you enjoyed this quick and easy eye makeup look. What's your go to festive makeup?

Thank you for reading <3




Mac's Russian red: The festive lip ❤️

Well hello to you my reader chums! Christmas is only 11 days away, how crazy is that to say? With the run up moving so swiftly, I wanted to share my go to lip for the festive season. Bold red lips are a staple look many beauty bloggers rock during Christmas and my favourite is the classic Mac Russian Red.

Here's a few reasons why:

Mac's Russian Red lipstick
Matte finish

I'm a complete addict when it comes to matte lipsticks. It's my favourite finish because it will compliment a shimmery eye, last longer than a satin or gloss and give a bolder statement to any makeup look. Russian Red's finish is completely matte with no overall glossy shine. Despite the finish, the creaminess and comfort isn't taken away from the product. The lipstick applies very smoothly onto the lips and isn't drying. After a whole day or evening wear, my lips do begin to feel dry, however over the short period of a few hours, you're good to go.

Pigmentation

Mac Russian Red's pigmentation is seamless. The bright, blue toned red is ideal for any occasion, whether that's a Christmas party or a day out at the markets, the colour suits all festivities. I'd say, once applied onto the lips, you'll need one or two layers to achieve the full bold, colour pay off. As it's such a staple red, it suits many different skin tones and series of looks. I couldn't fault the richness, creamy texture or pigmentation of this product.

Lasting power

For some reason, I'm one of those people where lipsticks don't stay on no matter which ever Pinterest hack I use. However, Mac's lipsticks including Russian Red cling to my lips on many occasions, lasting a good few hours. The lasting power increases when I apply lip liner or use a dabbing technique, but ultimately for me this lipstick wears incredibly well.

Mac's Russian Red lipstick review

Overall

Given the perfect festive shade, faultless lasting power and pigmentation, can you think of a better lipstick for this season? I'm obsessed and will continue to use this as my go to red all year round, especially at Christmas time.

The perfect Christmas red lip

I hope you enjoyed this post! What's your staple read in the festive season?

Thank you for reading <3




An open letter to my anxiety

Well hello to you my reader chums!

An open letter to my anxiety

Dear Anxiety,

You've been a apart of my life now for a good few years. We've had our highs and some really bad lows, but I'd like to say I've come out on top. Throughout 2016, I've gone to levels I'd never thought I would, accomplishing things only a year or so ago, that I didn't think were possible. From not being able to walk to my local shopping centre on my own, to now travelling alone to a new country and thriving on seeing different locations, we've come far don't you think? I have to admit, this wasn't easy. Till this day, you still like to creep up on me every now and then. Whether it's a morning at work leaving me with excessive, negative thoughts and panic attack at the ready or over the course of a few days to weeks, through uncontrollable crying. It's an up and down battle.

However, today I'm not here to focus on the times you've taken from me but those triumphant moments I have conquered. Remember when I was dreading leaving the house on your own? Safe to say I've overcame that. Not only do I feel comfortable walking somewhere by myself, but I've travelled to Brighton by train alone and even flew to a different country! What about anxiety preventing me from going on a night out with friends? At times it still gets to me, yet ultimately, I'm able to dress up, go to a party or for drinks and fully enjoy myself. Let's not forget tight spaces that use to trigger my panic attacks. I'm now able to get on London tubes with ease and even thrive on the bustling excitement the city brings. I was capable to walk up Cologne cathedral, those 500 steps closed in the tightest of spaces. I've visited packed out clubs, shopping centres and train stations yet remained fully calm. Slowly but surely, I have overcome the main triggers that brought you on and prevented me from doing big things. I say yes to way more opportunities, events, meeting new people and travelling to new destinations. Instead of being scared of seeing a new location, the thought makes me jump with excitement! I used to have a major fear of flying with you being your highest on a plane, yet flying 5 times this year, I now love nothing more than soaring in the sky, knowing I'll land, ready for my next exploration. That trapped feeling I used to have, doesn't spring on me during flights or tubes. I allow excitement to overtake and focus on my breathing. I will not let you be in charge anymore.

It's been a roller coaster of a year with you. The low moments sucked, but I've pulled myself through and came up on top. For the next year and as time goes on, I'm determined to fully beat you. To be free of you forever, living each day as it comes, without the worry or overwhelming emotion creeping up on me. I aim to move forward, continuing the positive thinking and being the best person I can.

Even though at times you were suffocating and I've been at my lowest, I'm determined to keep going, pushing though and keeping strong. After all the unforgettable things I've done in 2016, I want to continue pursuing even more adventures, opportunities and embracing the beauty that life is. I will win this battle.

Till next time,

Della x

For more articles on anxiety, check out my tips or travel anxiety post.

Thank you for reading <3

November favourites ❤️

Well hello to you my reader chums! The Christmas season is fully amongst us with festive tunes and twinkling lights at every turn. November seemed to sweep by in the blink of an eye and I'm not entirely sure where it went. The past few weeks have been busy, however I had the chance to try out some new products and can't wait to share them with you.

Here's an overview of my November favourites:

November favourites 2016

November favourites 2016

Zoella Beauty 'Hungry Hands' hand cream

When the cold weather hits, my hands are constantly dry and the skin can crack open so carrying around hand cream is a life saver. A new discovery and obsession of mine is the Zoella Beauty hand cream from her Christmas collection. Initially, I picked this up because I was on the hunt for a new hand cream and adore gingerbread so thought I'd give it a go. I have to say, it didn't disappoint. The ginger and vanilla blended scent is addictive, I can't get enough of it, plus the consistency is creamy yet not sticky and sinks into the skin after a few minutes; a heavenly combination. For the £5 price mark, there's a lot of product and as the cream is a thicker texture, you don't need heaps to do the job. I'll be sure to keep this beauty in my handbag for the upcoming colder months and would highly recommend it.

Zoella beauty Hungry hands hand cream

Stila Beauty cream blush in 'Peony'

Last month, I was lucky enough to win a competition on Twitter and received this gorgeous blush as one of my prizes. Blusher isn't something I usually buy often as I tend to stick to the same one, changing up other products in my routine so was excited to give this a go. I've fallen in love with this blush, it's the ideal everyday colour to give a flush of natural pink to the cheeks. As it's a cream blush, it's an easy part of my makeup routine, dabbing on my cheekbones and blending out with fingers. The consistency is very smooth and pigmented, leaving a lovely dusky, warm pink colour on the cheeks. With a lightweight feel and overall rosy glow, it compliments a variety of different looks.

Stila cream blush in 'Peony'

Nyx cosmetics matte lip cream in 'Rome'

When it comes to lipsticks, a matte finish is my favourite. Over the past few months, I've become obsessed with Nyx's matte lip creams range as not only do they have my desired finish but are creamy on the lips. My current go to colour of theirs is 'Rome', a beautiful brown toned, dark dusky pink. As it's a slightly darker shade it can vamp up any look but also be worn with toned down makeup, it's a versatile shade. I think it's very suited for this time of year as it's a warmer based colour which compliments bronzes and gold toned eye shadows well. If you haven't given these liquid lipsticks a go, I'd 100% recommend them. They have a variety of colours from baby pinks to striking purples, a shade for everyone.

Nyx cosmetics matte lip cream in Rome


Spiral hair toggles

This is a bit of an unusual favourite, yet an accessory I use constantly for convenience purposes, the spiral hair toggles. The bobbles are designed to prevent kinks and make hair tying that little bit easier. I'm obsessed with these little gizmos because instead of that annoying tough tying of other hair bands, you can whip your hair up in a breeze and take it out if need me without any major kinks.

Spiral hair toggle

German Christmas markets

My top favourite has to be visiting the Cologne Christmas markets. I went away with a group of friends for 4 days and saw all the best parts of Cologne, the highlight being the Christmas markets. I loved the charismatic vibe and quaint, quirky trinkets that were in store on all the various stalls. The food was cooked to perfection and the freshest, most delicious delicacies I've ever tasted; I would love to go back. There's just something about festive cheer and the wintry air, that brings the magic of Christmas to life.

German Christmas markets nutcracker decoration

I hope you enjoyed my November favourites. What products have you been using this month?

Thank you for reading <3

4 days in Cologne: A Christmas market adventure

Well hello to you my reader chums! 

The festive season; a time for heart-warming tunes, Christmas markets and good food. To experience something different in the run up to Christmas, a group of my friends and I headed to Cologne for the weekend just gone to visit the Christmas markets. If you've been reading for a while, you'd know I love nothing more than exploring a new place so hopped onto the chance of going. We went for four days and three nights, packing in Cologne's best features in the process. I have to say, I was blown away by the calmness and charismatic appeal the city brought, it was unlike anything I've seen before. The colourful buildings, twinkling lights and picturesque scenery were beyond words, a city I'd definitely recommend to everyone, especially in the festive period.

Day 1

We ventured on our journey at around 2am on the Friday morning, driving to London Stansted for our early 7.55am flight. After a food stop and security checks, we were off on our way to Cologne, Germany, bursting with excitement for the adventure ahead.

Upon arrival, we dropped our bags into storage as the apartment wasn't ready for us yet. Then we took to the streets of Cologne for a gander, browsing round the Christmas markets and eating some of the local treats. Afterwards, we retreated back to the apartment and were amazed by the accommodation. The two floor, open planned and contemporary style apartment was beyond incredible. There was enough space for everyone, including 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, a living area, two dining rooms and kitchen. Dinner out and Christmas markets came next, with a chilly festive frost in the air. The markets looked even more glorious at night, twinkling under the sky. Crafts, decorations and food stalls galore, the two main markets showcased some astonishing goodies, located only a short walk from our accommodation.



How to see Cologne in 4 days
Carousel at the markets

Cologne Christmas markets
Christmas markets at night

How to see Cologne in 4 days
Me, Danielle and Chloe at dinner

How to see Cologne in 4 days
Cologne Christmas markets with all the girls

How to see Cologne in 4 days
Rooftop view of the markets from our apartment

Day 2

The second day was a late start but featured one of my highlights of the trip, the cathedral. Despite being incredibly tired and claustrophobic walking up the 500+ steps, it was so worth it. The panoramic view of Cologne was mind blowing, you were able to see the entire city and all the Christmas markets that lay below. Like when visiting other cities, cathedrals and churches are an attraction which really impress me and Cologne was no exception. It's a definite must see! I would advise however to take a gym class or two beforehand because we were all crazily unfit and couldn't cope with the exercise! Before and after the cathedral, we visited two separate markets. A quaint, tucked away one which served up crepes and all the breakfast foods we wished for plus a much bigger one, surrounding the cathedral grounds. Here, they sold Christmas decorations, artwork, chocolate strawberries (the best I've ever tasted), mulled wine and more! We then dined in a classic German pub style restaurant with a few drinks, that evening.

How to see Cologne in 4 days
Side shot of the cathedral

How to see Cologne in 4 days
Key hole shot of the city

How to see Cologne in 4 days
Front of the cathedral

Cologne Christmas markets guide
The girls at the cathedral grounds

Cologne Christmas markets guide
The squad in front of the cathedral

What to see on a Cologne Christmas break
Danielle, Chloe, Molly and I in the skylight room

Day 3

The third day commenced with even more Christmas markets, located nearby to the river Rhine. Before heading to the chocolate museum that day, we took a look around the quirky markets on offer, soaking up the local delicacies they had in store. After much anticipation, it was time for my chocoholic-self to enter the chocolate museum, 'Imhoff-Schokoladenmuseum'. All of us absolutely adored it. The aroma lingered throughout and not only did you get to learn about the chocolate's history but you could see the yummy treats being made and even got to try it! The place was like Willy Wonka's chocolate factory brought to life, I was in sugar heaven.

When evening came, we headed back to the apartment to get ready for ice skating. I was worried initially about skating but eventually gave it a go and had a whale of a time. I'm thrilled we opted to go at night because there was better atmosphere; festive songs were playing and with the lingering scent of mulled wine, Christmas had been amongst us. We had a chilled evening afterwards, purchasing a few snacks and drinks to enjoy at the apartment.

What to see on a Cologne Christmas break
Entrance to the markets

Cologne Christmas markets
Café stall in the markets
'Imhoff-Schokoladenmuseum'
Imhoff-Schokoladenmuseum


Must see - Cologne chocolate museum
Inside the chocolate museum

What to see on a Cologne Christmas break
The markets nearby the chocolate museum

What to see on a Cologne Christmas break
Ice skating rink

What to see on a Cologne Christmas break
Molly and I on the rink

What to see on a Cologne Christmas break
Me, Molly, Danielle and Chloe on the rink

Asos matching pjs
Me and Molly in our matching pjs

Day 4

The last day, we embraced all of Germany's highlights once more, tasting the fresh food served up on the markets, walking around the city one more time and goofing around, appreciating the sensational location we called home for the past few days. I got to eat the freshly made waffles and have to admit they were the best I've ever tasted. I had a true foodie day, trying pretzels, strudel and of course the famous sausages; not being a big meat fan I finally found one I enjoyed. It had a slight spice to it and reminded me of a classic saveloy. Overall though, I couldn't fault the cuisine, every dish or snack I purchased was freshly made and tasted divine; if you're a foodie, get yourself down to Germany at Christmas time.

What to see on a Cologne Christmas break
Danielle and I with our waffles

River Rhien in Cologne
The River Rhine

What to do on a Cologne Christmas vacation
Having a laugh with the girls at the apartment

What to do on a Cologne Christmas break
Molly and I at Cologne airport

Danke Cologne, you were a true pleasure, I'd love to visit again one day.

I hope you enjoyed this adventure style post. Have you ever visited Cologne?

For more city break posts, check out my adventures to Barcelona, Rome and Athens

Thank you for reading <3

Creative Christmas gift guide

Well hello to you my reader chums! The holiday season has truly began - Christmas lights are brightening up every town and festivities underway with that rush of present shopping commencing everywhere. This season makes my heart fuzzy; the good will towards others, cosiness of nights in and memorable moments with your loved ones, gives us time to reflect. Present planning for Christmas is my favourite thing to do as I love nothing more than giving and sharing my adoration for others.

Gift guides are some of my favourite posts to read, a Lush cosmetics stocking filler or the latest Urban Decay palette is what every blogger wishes for as a gift under the tree. However, I wanted to my gift guide to be a bit different this year, sharing diverse, creative gift ideas you give or make for your loved ones this Christmas. Lets take a look:

Christmas gidt guide


An experience day

Whether it's a trip to the theatre, spa day or the afternoon tea bus in London, there's plenty of experience days and vouchers on offer. You can arrange a day of paint balling, trip to Harry Potter Studios or even a photoshoot, the list is endless. For theatre tickets, I always use Love Theatre for the best deals and seats ( sign up to their emails as they're constantly sending through the latest offer.) Wowcher, Groupon, Treatwell and many more sites provide a constant stream of different experience day out ideas. For a present on the more expensive side, you could book a weekend away or even a hot air balloon ride; go wild this Christmas time!

Photo album

Christmas is a time for loved ones to get together so what better gift than a photo album? If for your partner or best friend, you could compile all the photos of your recent holiday and put them in a album, then get a bit crafty sticking on letters 'Italy 2016' for instance. Hobby Craft is the perfect shop to buy any arts and crafts stickers or trinkets to personalise a gift with. Alternatively, you could make a family album for your parents or siblings and fill it with your favourite snaps over the years; the personalisation is for your creative freedom to run wild.

Hamper

Many high street and department stores sell stunning hampers consisting of food, pampering or makeup but why not be creative and make your own? It'll be an enjoyable activity and you would have put your personal stamp on a gift. There's loads of different hampers you can do, but my favourite idea is the 'ultimate movie night'. Buy a few DVDs, favourite snacks, comfy socks and wrap them all up in cellophane. You could be even more creative and make your own cinema tickets or themed accessories to go alongside the gift. A self care hamper is also another lovely idea. Fill it with candles, face masks, lip balm, hot chocolate and food goodies for any perfect pamper night in.

Personalised gifts

There's many other ways to give a personalised gift. Blow up your favourite image together on a canvas, purchase a piece of jewellery engraved or make a scrapbook of your best moments together. With many websites personalising items for you, design your own t-shirt, mug or teddy bear, options are widely available.

The happiness jar

Christmas is all about the happy moments so why not spread that love with some positivity? This is where the happiness jar comes into play. It can be a small or big jar filled with quotes, memories and chocolates to show the recipient how much you mean to them. Either a stocking filler or for a main gift, the gesture is one anybody would appreciate.


I hope you enjoyed this different style Christmas gift guide. What other creative ideas do you have?

Thank you for reading <3

Brand focus: Sephora

Well hello to you my reader chums! When in Rome and Athens, I had to take a trip into Sephora as I've never visited a branch before. Being my first and second time in the store, I was overwhelmed with excitement to what they had on offer. As it was the European chains, they didn't stock all the American brands I'd liked to have tried, so decided to pick up a few of Sephora's own branded products. I didn't want to go too wild as I had a limited amount of Euros on both trips which I'd already invested into other activities. However, I wanted to try out their renowned face masks and picked up some shadow sticks as I love trying out new eye looks.

Here's a look at all the products:

Sephora face masks and eye shadow sticks
Sephora face masks and eye shadow sticks
Sephora face masks and eye shadow sticks

Face sheet masks - I picked up two face masks, the Avocado, for nourishing/repairing skin and the pomegranate which helps tackle fatigue. As they were for different purposes and scents, it gave me a chance to see how both worked. Initially, putting on the mask I was a bit taken aback. I typically use your generic face mask, that's applied, left onto the skin and washed off, never a sheet one so a new experience for me. I pulled it out from the packaging, took of the excess layer and placed onto my skin, which felt a bit strange at first. Once settled, I got used to the soft and wet texture, allowing the product to sink into my skin and allowed myself to unwind. I left it on for the recommended 15 minutes and after peeling it off, my skin felt like I'd revealed a new layer. It was soft, moisturised and revitalised. The avocado scent for me personally smelt a lot better than the pomegranate which lingered much more.

Eye mask - As I got on quite well with the face mask after the initial new experience, I couldn't wait to give the eye mask a go. These were a bit trickier to put on as my eye area wasn't large enough for the design so I had excess mask that I ended up folding over. Despite this, once on and left to sink into my skin, the eye masks felt like a refreshing dream. The gentle texture of the material and soothing product were the perfect blend to awaken my under eyes. I can't wait to give more of these a go in various scents! (Hurry up and come to the UK Sephora.)

Sephora face masks and eye shadow sticks

Shadow sticks - A product I love trying out are eye shadow sticks, to test new colours, consistencies and how long it stays under shadows. I have two different shades, the champagne colour, ideal for an everyday look and a khaki colour, something unusual to vamp up the eye look on an evening out. The creaminess of these sticks is unreal, they draw on and blend seamlessly. Pigmentation is slightly toned down to the product on the tube, yet still intense enough to wear as just that on its own. The wearing power is great, I'll pop it on in the morning and it'll last throughout my working day with minor creasing, pretty fab considering I have quite oily eye lids. The champagne colour holds golden and nude tones running through mixed with a lot of shimmer, making it an ideal base for an easy, day to day look. I like the khaki as it's not too vampy and dark, yet more like an olive toned, emerald green which can easily be smoked up with some black shadow. To sum it up, they're incredible. I can't wait to try out more shades!

Sephora face masks and eye shadow sticks

Now I've tried out their shadow sticks and face masks, I'd love to give all the other products a go. Sephora has certainly impressed me, I wish there was one right on my doorstep!

I hope you enjoyed this overlook at a few of Sephora's products. What's your favourite item of theirs?

Thank you for reading <3


October favourites ❤️

Well hello to you my reader chums! The month of falling leaves and autumn vibes has come to a close with an even colder season truly amongst us. October, I have to admit was an incredibly busy few weeks! Something was always going on, from my getaway to Athens, London trips to parties and all the small activities in between, November arrived before I knew it. I didn't really try out many new products the past few weeks but dabbled with a few golden oldies.

Here are my October monthly favourites:

October favourites

October favourites

Garnier Micellar water review

Garnier micellar water

For years now, I've been using Garnier's micellar water to take off my makeup as I've found it to be the most effective and easy method. I wanted to give it an extra shout out this month as I've loved using the mini bottled version. As I mentioned, I've been on a lot of adventures lately, so find the mini bottle easy to pack for sleepovers or weekend breaks. However, it's not under 100ml so you can't use this for hand luggage on a flight. The product itself is very gentle on the skin, wiping away all the excess makeup with hardly no effort whatsoever. It doesn't hold a scent so the lack of perfume is ideal for those with sensitive skin. After use, your skin feels completely clean and like the majority of your makeup has been swept away, even waterproof mascara; a must essential for every makeup wearer.

Mac's amber lights eye shadow

Mac's 'Amber lights' eye shadow

Autumn for me means the warmer and darker colours come into play, from burgundy, berry to copper tones especially for makeup. I love to get out my trusty copper toned and warm brown eye shadows at this time of year as they pair so well with my favourite autumn fashion pieces. The staple being 'Amber lights' by Mac. It's the perfect shade with enough gold and that pinch of orange tone to give a rich copper colour. As I have blue eyes, its the one eye shadow I put on that truly makes my eyes pop! The shadow itself is very soft, intensely pigmented and blends well, I couldn't fault it.

Maybelline's colour drama 'Berry much' lip pencil
Maybelline's colour drama lip pencil in 'Berry Much'

Berry, burgundy or purple lip colours are my favourite to wear when the autumn months arrive. I love pairing them with warmer toned eyes and bronzed, glowing cheekbones. This berry lip product in particular was one I used to be obsessed with and took it out for a few uses these past few weeks. I can see why I fell in love with it, the consistency is creamy, pigmentation strong and colour a stunning purple toned berry. Even though in a pencil form, application is still soft and doesn't tug on the lips.

Bath bombs

With the consistent cold weather, I've found nothing better than a bubbly Lush bath to warm and relax me after a day at work. I've been using a mix of my favourite bath bombs from Lush cosmetics and Zoella Bath Latte to create an endless amount of sweetly scented bubbles.

Tartan scarves

Autumn is my favourite season for fashion. I love layering up, the colours on trend and tartan scarves, it's certainly my cup of tea. I'm a tartan scarf hoarder, I constantly buy them whenever I see a new one in the shop; my favourite being the blanket style scarves you can purchase in Primark. They're thick, cosy and totally inexpensive, the best way to stay in budget and look stylish this winter. Out of all the scarves I have, the one I've been wearing the most is a tartan print with burnt orange, khaki, white and blue tones running through it, something a bit different to your typical red and green ones.

Adventures 

Visiting new places and having different experiences are my favourite activity to delve into. I'm lucky this past month to have flown to Athens on my own, went on a few London ventures to see Fifth Harmony and Harry Potter World plus the random, fun-filled moments with my best friends. I feel so bless everyday to do such sensational things and be surrounded by a group of loving people.

I hope you enjoyed my October favourites. What products have you been loving this month?

Thank you for reading <3