Monday, 30 April 2012

Fake Bake Airbrush

Introducing my FAVOURITE fake tan of all time...

Fake Bake Airbrush


If I had to list the names of every fake tan I've tried I'd have a list as long as my arm, but the Airbrush tan from Fake Bake would most definitely be at the top.  The application is so straight forward and faultless, it smells good and dries quickly and evenly so you can wear it out, and most importantly it gives the most gorgeous natural caramel colour after one application.  If you're looking for a streak free, very natural looking tan then this has to be it.  It is perfect for a night out, as I can apply it the night before, get up and go to work or do some shopping, come home and wash it out and a gorgeous deep tan has developed underneath.  Whenever I have posted outfit pics this year, I've been wearing this tan.

Fake tan is available in lotion, spray and mousse format and those which come in an aerosol spray can are definitely my favourite to use.  The Fake Bake Airbrush is the best aerosol spray false tan that I've used.  The gold packaging is gorgeous and so well designed.  The 360 degree spray nozzle can spray at all angles, even upside down, making it so easy to apply and spray all areas of your body, even those parts that are hard to reach.  The spray is a fine mist that is easy to control and it doesn't blob out and drip anywhere unlike other spray fake tans I've tried... yes I'm talking about you St. Moriz!

I love how fake bake give you good quality gloves in the box, it's a nice touch and they can be used again and again.  To apply the tan, I wear the gloves and spray the tan onto my skin and then I buff it in using a St. Tropez buffing mitt.  It is fast drying so there is no waiting around before you put your clothes on.  I find that two thin layers of this tan, applied one after the other are most effective when using this tan as they provide the most gorgeous natural tan.  The guide colour of the tan isn't too much darker than the colour your skin will be once it is washed off so it gives a great indication of what shade your skin will actually be, so there are no nasty surprises.  The guide colour also dries looking very natural and on the rare occasion when I've needed to go out after tanning but before washing it off, I have been able to confidently go out without looking silly.  Once applied, the tan doesn't transfer too much onto bed sheets, PJ's and clothes which is great as I've used false tan in the past that has literally stained EVERYTHING!  Fake Bake Airbrush also smells pretty good too as far as fake tans go, quite tropical infact and not of that biscuit, rice crispy scent that usually comes with fake tan!  This tan has great staying power too.  I only need to apply it once a week and it gradually fades very slowly and evenly.

I honestly don't think anyone could go wrong with this tan.  Please let me know your thoughts if you try it as I love it and would love to know what you all think about it!

I buy my Fake Bake Airbrush from FeelUnique.com for £23.40 for a 207ml can which is a great bargain as it usually retails for quite a bit more.

What is your favourite fake tan?  Do you prefer lotion, mousse or spray?

Sunday, 29 April 2012

WhatLauraDid: Week 18


This week has been all about exercise and relaxation for me.  I've been getting lots of early nights, walking to and from work, going swimming, tanning and going on the vibro plate every night.  I also tried my hand at Bokwa which is a exercise class based around african dancing.  Its a bit like Zumba and very very good.  Works every part of your body and you feel awesome afterwards.

On WhatLauraLoves this week, I shared with you some great value Yankee Candles that I picked up and I reviewed Batiste's Light & Blonde dry shampooI also reviewed two more skin serums this week, the Trilogy Age Proof CoQ10 Booster Serum and the Dr Organic Rose Otto Facial Serum and I've got a Decleor one coming up in the next couple of weeks to rival the offering from Dr Organic, so stay tuned!

Have you tried Bokwa?  Do you go to any exercise classes?

Saturday, 28 April 2012

Dr Organic Rose Otto Facial Serum

If you're a regular reader of WhatLauraLoves, you'll know that I've been trying out lots of skin serums to review for you all for months now.  First up we had the Manuka Doctor Apiclear Skin Treatment Serum which is perfect for troubled skin, then the Avene Soothing Hydrating Serum which is a godsend for sensitive skin, followed by the Trilogy Age Proof CoQ10 Booster Serum for those who are concerned about premature ageing of the skin and today, I have a review of the Dr Organic's Organic Rose Otto Facial Serum.
Dr Organic’s Organic Rose Otto Facial Serum

Dr Organic Organic Rose Otto Facial Serum, £12.29 for 30ml

The Rose Otto Facial Serum by Dr Organic is perfect for those looking for an organic approach to skincare.  It contains rose which is anti ageing, super soothing and great at repairing the skin, restoring it back to looking revitalised and naturally healthy.  After a month of daily use, I really found that my skin was much smoother and felt very soft.  This serum is a natural way to achieve firm, toned and soft skin.

Out of all of the serums I have tried this is the most oil like and the one that I think you will either love or hate.  On the oil front, you're probably thinking 'duh' right?  But compared to the Trilogy Age Proof CoQ10 Booster Serum which is also an oil, this is much oilier in texture (in a natural way) and the way that it applies to the skin.  This is definitely a good product to use before bed for an intensive restoration of the skin overnight.  For those who have oily skin, I wouldnt recommend this for use on a morning as it doesn't provide a good base for make up.  This is because it doesn't sink into the skin very quickly and if you touch your skin after applying it you can still feel the oil.  Whilst some people may not like this, I don't mind it at all as I apply it as the last step in my evening skincare routine and then allow it to get to work while I sleep.  After using this, I wake up with very soft skin that remains soft all day.  It smells amazing too, if you like the scent of rose of course!

The packaging, like with many of the serums I have tried, is a glass bottle which isn't great for travelling but it looks lovely on my dressing table.

You can buy this from Holland and Barret for £12.29 for 30ml.  I'd be very interested to try the bath oil from the Rose Otto range too as I've seen some good results from the serum, I'm sure it would be highly moisturising for my body too.  I always use my reward card when shopping at Holland and Barrett, it's a great way to save money although it does encourage me to spend more...!

Have you tried any other products from Dr Organic?  What is your favourite rose based product?

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Batiste Light & Blonde

Batiste Light & Blonde Dry Shampoo
This Batiste dry shampoo works in just the same way as all of the other brilliant dry shampoos from Batiste with the added benefit that it has a hint of colour for light and blonde hair.  It refreshes hair and banishes oily roots whilst creating a little natural volume and lift in the hair.  You use it in just the same way too; spray at the roots, rub vigorously and brush through.

I'd definitely say this is more suited to those who have yellow and golden blonde tones in their hair rather than light ash tones blonde as when sprayed onto the hair the dry shampoo can look quite yellow. Providing you have this shade of blonde hair, it does a good job of covering up roots in between trips to the hair dresser too.  Those with ash or platinum blonde hair would be better suited to the original scented dry shampoos I think as these are a white powder and therefore more suited to their hair shade.  My favourites that I would recommend are Brit and Wild.

Oh and for those of you with brown hair I've heard that the brunette light and dark versions of of the Batiste Hint Of Colour dry shampoos are very good.  They're particularly worth giving a go if you've had any chalky experiences with standard white powder dry shampoo in the past.

Batiste Light & Blonde is pretty inexpensive, retailing at around £2-3 per can from Superdrug, Bodycare, Boots, etc you know the usual places!

Have you tried any of the other dry shampoos in this range?

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

WhatLauraBought: Yankie Candle Haul


If you're a fan of Yankee Candle then I'm sure you'll love their Simply Home range available at Asda Living, B&Q and alike.  I burn candles like they're going out of fashion so my days of Floris and Neom candles are more or less over whilst I'm saving for my wedding.  These Yankee Candles are a great bargain as they smell and look just as good as any other candle.


This is one of their large jar candles in vanilla frosting, my favourite scent.  It smells absolutely delicious, very sweet and very creamy.  I love to light this in my kitchen to give the scent of home baked goodies!  These jar candles are really affordable too, priced at around £12 and they last an absolute age.  I buy these for lots of my friends to accompany their birthday presents.


I also adore the wax tarts.  They're a great way to try a different scent, without committing to buying the full jar candle.  My recent purchases are white linen and lace and soft cotton which are great to burn in your utility room or bedroom, cherry vanilla and vanilla frosting.  These are only 90p- £1 each depending on where you buy them from.  I burn them in a little cream oil burner from Sainsbury's using an unscented tea light.  They last for ages and you can keep reusing them.  If I get bored of a particular scent or want to change the mood in a room, I simply leave the wax to harden then pop it out of the oil burner and keep it in a little bag until I want to use it next.



What is your favourite candle brand?  Do you prefer wax tarts or jar candles?  What is your favourite scent?

Monday, 23 April 2012

Trilogy Age Proof CoQ10 Booster Serum

If you're a regular reader of my blog, you'll know that I have been trying out different serums to review for you all.  So far, I've given my thoughts on the Manuka Doctor Apiclear Skin Treatment Serum which is great for troubled skin and the Avene Soothing Hydrating Serum which is ideal for those with sensitive or reactive skin.  Today, I'll be reviewing the Trilogy Age Proof CoQ10 Booster Serum which is designed with ageing skin in mind. 
I've used and reviewed Trilogy products in the past; a couple of moisturisers and an exfolliant but never a serum or a product from the anti ageing range and I'm so pleased that I got to try this.  Trilogy has attracted many celebrity fans from Dannii Minogue to Sadie Frost and Denise Van Outen.
TRILOGY AGE PROOF CoQ10 Booster Serum
Trilogy Age Proof CoQ10 Booster Serum, £29.50 for 20ml
As far as I'm concerned, you can never be to young to benefit from anti ageing products.  Particularly with there being so much pollution in the air these days and if you spend a lot of time in the sunshine like I try to, it is really important to look after your skin as the sun really ages the skin. Why wait until your thirties and forties when you can be benefiting from them in your twenties?  Prevention is better than cure!  This serum is highly concentrated and a very intensive treat for your skin whether or not you are concerned about premature ageing yourself.  The serum is rich in antioxidants which are designed specifically for skin that is dull, tired and stressed out and it really does work as it made my skin look a lot brighter and refreshed.  The most significant anti ageing ingredient in the serum is the co-enzyme Q10 which boosts the production of collagen in the skin which helps to plump and repair the skin and reduce the signs of premature ageing.  It also contains Tamanu oil which is rich in essential fatty acids that deeply moisturise and nourish the skin and promote the regeneration of healthy skin cells.  After a couple of weeks of use, I really felt as though my skin was renewed.  I personally would recommend using this at night as it doesn't fully absorb too quickly into the skin so it is great as an intensive treat over night.  I love using this before bed as I wake up with skin that is literally baby soft.

After applying this to my face, I started to notice how soft it made my hands feel so I have also started using it on my elbows and wrists where I have a touch of psoriasis and dry skin and it really has softened up those areas too.

A little goes a very long way with this serum so out of all of those I've tried, this one is particularly cost effective.  The only thing that I'm not mad about with this serum is the smell, it's just not for me and my particular taste (or should that be sense of smell?!).  The scent is very strong and quite herbal, so if you like herbal scents then you'll love this.  The scent doesn't linger on your skin though so it hasn't stopped me from using it and I'm really pleased as its done wonders for softening my skin.

As for packaging, I love the pipette as it allows you to really control how much you dispense.  It is a glass bottle though which isn't particularly travel friendly and like with the Avene Soothing Hydrating Serum, I'm conscious to not place it too close to the edge of my bathroom shelf for fear of knocking it off and smashing it to smithereens!

You can buy this serum from Lovelula.com, John Lewis, and in some pharmacy and health stores for £29.50.

What is your favourite serum?  Have you used Trilogy products before?

Sunday, 22 April 2012

WhatLauraDid: Week 17

Me on a Christmas trip to the Maldives
I've had a great time this week and put the ball in motion to make some great memories in 2012.  It's been a couple of years since my Dad last had a holiday, he works so hard and I wanted to treat him to say thank you for everything he does for me, so I have booked a holiday for me, him and Mr WLL to go to Tenerife for a week.  I've got a few foreign holidays booked for this year; Amsterdam, Turkey and Tenerife.  We decided to stay quite close to going home and go on a few cheaper trips away rather than having one big blow out holiday.  Have you got any plans for going on holiday this year?

It was my best friends birthday on Wednesday this so Mr WLL and I went out to the theatre and for a few drinks with her and some friends and family.  For her birthday gift, I wanted to get her something that we could experience together so I've booked us a spa break with a couple of treatments each and a Marc Jacobs Lola Rose perfume as I got myself a bottle at the beginning of the year and loved it, I knew she would too.  I'm really looking forward to taking her away and getting pampered, I always think it's nice to give someone a memory for their birthday and I'm sure she'll remember it for years to come!

My days off this week were Thursday and Friday which was great because although I hate working all weekend, it meant I could get loads done in the house, on the blog and to chill a bit as well.  I had a fault on my iPhone 4S this week and I must admit that, for once, Vodafone were brilliant.  They delivered my new phone by courier on Thursday at the time they said they would and the whole process was pretty smooth and faultless; they have gone up in my estimations!  I also had my infills done and did a little bit of shopping, just a few beauty bits and bobs and some Flossys (casual shoes like Toms) which I got in several colours... addicted but they're so comfortable.

It's been quite busy on WhatLauraLoves this week and I'd like to thank you all for your support on Twitter and on the blog, you've been amazing and really kept me going.  As promised, I posted a WhatLauraWore outfit post of the dress I wore to Aintree Ladies Day and I also posted another outfit post of a gorgeous Yours Clothing dress.  Speaking of Ladies Day, I gave you my top tips on packing your beauty essentials lightly for one night away from home which included lots of great sample sizes from the likes of Decleor and Crabtree and Evelyn.  Finally I posted about a serum I've been using in recent months, the Eau Thermale Avene Soothing Hydrating Serum, which is perfect for those of you with sensitive or reactive skin.  Next week I'll be reviewing a serum for those who are concerned with premature ageing of the skin; I'm trying to cover all skin concerns here!

Gosh, I must apologise for the length of this post.  I usually struggle with what to write in my weekly round up as I don't often give too much away about my life outside of WhatLauraLoves but I've had lots to talk about this week and I'm so excited for things to come!  I hope you've all enjoyed your weekend and are looking forward to going back to work tomorrow... well, perhaps not quite looking to it but you know what I mean, lol!

What have you been up to this week?  Got anything exciting planned for the year ahead?

Saturday, 21 April 2012

WhatLauraWore: Aintree Ladies Day

Hey Everyone

Hope you're all enjoying your Saturday evening.  I've been all set for The Voice and Britains Got Talent for a day now... Last night I got myself all excited for a night in, then I realised it was Friday, blonde moment!

Tonight I thought I'd share with you some snaps from Ladies Day at Aintree.  I hope you like my outfit, I felt really girlie.  Everyone was dressed up so beautifully, all the women were in the most gorgeous dresses and hats and the men looked very dapper in their suits!  Unfortunately I didn't win much but I had a fantastic day and I thoroughly enjoyed my time at the races and with Clare.

WhatLauraWore
Dress from Very.co.uk
Black shrug from Evans
Satin rose shoes and clutch bag from BHS
Fascinator from Very.co.uk
Beaded necklace and matching bracelet from Next
Pearl bracelets from Primark
Stud logo earrings by Chanel
Rose gold watch by DKNY



Have you been to the races before?  What would you wear?  Did you have a flutter on the Grand National?

Thursday, 19 April 2012

One Night Away Beauty Essentials

For years I've been a self confessed over packer, not just clothes but with accessories, shoes, make up and toiletries... especially toiletries.  Whether I'm flying across the world for a couple of weeks or going away for night, I would always take lotions and potions for every purpose, mostly full sized, which I would only use a very small amount of and end up either leaving the rest in the hotel bin or paying hefty charges for extra weight in my suitcase.  Since I started to really make inroads into using up the products I already have, rather than buying new ones, at the beginning of last year (she says as she has just put a Klorane order through online...) and after a pretty steep baggage charge at the airport en route to Turkey, I decided to really pay attention to what I'm packing when I'm travelling regardless of where it may be.

When packing, I now ask myself the following questions; 1) is it really necessary? 2) will I use it? 3) how much of it will I need?  Then I set about sourcing the smallest version possible or depotting the product into travel suitable containers (I got some great ones from Primark last year which I'll show you shortly!).  I tend to travel quite a lot, whether its for a weekend away or a week or two abroad so I'm quite well rehearsed in packing for trips.  I thought I'd start showing you how I packing for different occasions, particularly when it comes to beauty products.  Today I thought I'd share with you the skincare and toiletries that I took away with me for a couple of nights away last week when I stayed at Clare's and a hotel for Ladies Day at Aintree.  I managed to fit all of my clothes, makeup and toiletries for Aintree into a Louis Vuitton Speedy 40 which is quite an achievement!

All of my toiletries fit into this little Decleor travel bag which I believe was originally designed for flights.  I carry this with me on all short trips and on the aeroplane with me when I go abroad.  It is big enough to fit all my essentials in... providing they are in miniature format and the mesh pockets make it easy to see exactly what is where.

Samples of your favourite products really are your best friend when you're packing to go away for a night or two.  Whether they're hotel, magazine or salon freebies or from a sample kit of products, they come in exceptionally handy.  Decleor samples are awesome for travelling and you get a surprising amount of product in each one- a little goes a very long way with them.  I seem to have quite a back up of Decleor samples as I am always gifted them when I go for my six weekly Decleor facial or buy products from the spa!  Another tip is to save fragrance samples for when travelling too, or use a Travalo to decant your favourite perfume.


Touch of Ginger Conditioning Shampoo & Gilchrist & Soames London Shower Gel
Hotel freebies that do what they say on the packet.  I've tried plenty of Gilchrist & Soames full sized products in the past so it was lovely receiving some sample sizes the last time I stayed at Matfen Hall in Northumberland.

Wisdom toothbrush, travel cap & Sensodyne Repair & Protect toothpaste
Great miniature toothpaste sample I received after visiting my dentist at Olivers Dental Studio, and a small and inexpensive tooth brush and cap; these are readily available in supermarkets, discount beauty stores, Boots and Superdrug.

Skin Active Age Supreme Face Wipes, B&M Home Bargains
Face wipes are by no means ideal to take your make up off with as they don't thoroughly cleanse your face and remove dirt entirely but coupled with a good shower, they can be very convenient for a night away.
Doctor Organic Rose Otto Hand and Nail Cream, Holland and Barrett
I've repurchased this hand cream time and time again, I always pick up the pack of three 20ml sized as I can never decide which I prefer out of the three scents.  They are ultra moisturising, deeply nourishing and long lasting without being sticky or greasy.

Crabtree & Evelyn Citron, Honey & Coriander Body Souffle
Great little one use sachet that I received when buying some other Crabtree & Evelyn products.  Smells amazing and the scent lingers on the skin for a good couple of hours.  There is enough in this sample size to apply it to the top half of my body, arms and shins.

Facial Skincare:
Decelor Experience De L'Age- Triple action eye and lip cream, wrinkle correction, firmness and radiance.  I use this morning and night before moisturising.

Decleor Harmonie Gentle Soothing Cream- High tolerance day cream that provides a skin with a defence against the elements on a day out.  I use this morning and night and it is a great base for makeup.  Although designed for normal to dry skin, my oily skin has experienced nothing but good things from this moisturiser.

Decleor Aromessence Rose D'Orient- Soothing serum that I apply to my face in the morning before my moisturiser.  Soothes any irritated areas of my skin and deeply nourishes it without leaving it greasy.  Very fast absorbing.

Decleor Rose D'Orient Night Balm- I use this at night after removing my makeup.  I warm a small amount on my finger tips and sweep it across my face.

Lip Care, Marks and Spencer
Handy little lip balm that I use morning and night after my skincare routine to moisturise and nourish my lips.  Provides a great base for even the driest of lipstick formula's.

Lily by Crabtree and Evelyn & Be Delicious by DKNY
Fragrance samples received in goodie bags are a perfect way to try new scents when away from home.  I particularly enjoyed wearing Lily by Crabtree and Evelyn.

Blonde hair grips and hair bobble
Essential for any quick up do's while away from home.

The only thing that I didn't include in this bag was a mini deodorant which I kept in my clutch bag.  Other than that, I think I've got the essentials covered.  This is more than enough for me for a night or two away!

What would your one night away picks be?

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

WhatLauraWore: Silver Jewels Dress

Today I thought I'd share with you some photos of the outfit I wore on Saturday night when I went out in town with the girls for a couple of their birthdays.  I must admit, I didn't feel as good in this dress as I did when I first bought it, as after losing weight it obviously doesn't fit quite like it used to and it did feel big, as though there was a lot of surplus material as I was wearing it but I wanted to give it a final outing before listing it on ebay!  It is a stunning dress though and I actually have it in a different colour a few sizes smaller so I will be sporting that one on my next outing.  This style of dress is perfect for those with a larger middle as it lightly skims over your largest part but pulls you in under your bust which is the slimmest part of the majority of plus sized women.  For those who don't like to show their arms, it could paired with a black shrug.  For more tips on how to wear a maxi dress with confidence, see my post dedicated to them here.





WhatLauraWore
Dress from Yours Clothing
Jewelled sandals from Dune
Silver jewelled bag from some random designer in Fenwicks
Thick silver bangle from Red Herring at Debenhams, others from a stall on holiday and Evans
Heart diamante earrings from New Look
Hair extensions from Foxy Locks

Hope you're all having a good week.  Pretty Little Liars tonight... too excited.  I'm really trying to refrain from watching it online.  Anyone else like that?!

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Avene Soothing Hydrating Serum

Since adding a serum to my skincare routine, I've seen such great results; my skin is much clearer, my pores aren't clogged and the very few blemishes that I get are banished very quickly!  I haven't tried many serums before as I would always focus on using a moisturiser straight after cleansing and toning but I don't think I would be without this step now.  My favourite skin serum has to be the Manuka Doctor Apiclear Skin Treatment Serum which I have repurchased twice since I first tried it last autumn.  Read my review here to see why I love it.

After getting such great results from the Manuka Doctor serum, I was really interested to try some more of the many face serums out there.  Over the past few months I've been trying out some more to review for you all.  They are all quite different and will benefit different types of skin so I'm sure there'll be a serum review for everyone.  Today, I'm reviewing the Soothing Hydrating Serum from sensitive skincare favourite, Avene.

Eau Thermale Avene Soothing Hydrating Serum

£17 for 30ml, available from Boots
The Eau Thermale Avene Soothing Hydrating Serum is designed as a complementary step in your current skincare routine to aid the maintenance of natural, radiant skin.  It is a very non offencive product and I'd say it is suitable for all skin types, although I think this would be loved most by those with sensitive and reactive skin as there is literally nothing in it that would irritate their skin.  This serum contains Avene Thermal Spring Water, which soothes the skin, reduces redness and stops irritation.  As an extra use, I've found that this serum is particularly effective when applied to your face if you've caught the sun as it really reduces the redness and takes out the sting; I'll definitely be taking this on holiday with me this year.

The serum is light, almost gel like in formulation and quite water based.  It is oil free so it is even perfect for those who have oily skin.  I have been applying it morning and night after cleansing and toning and before my day and night moisturiser.  It is fast absorbing and whilst you can feel it on your skin afterwards, it doesn't leave a film.  Using the serum on a morning really smooths my skin and provides a great even face ready for makeup application.  I personally prefer to use something a little more intense at night so I will definitely continue using this serum on a morning but opt for a more concentrated serum for night time use.

The serum comes in simple, no fuss packaging that lets you see exactly how much you have left of the product which you'll appreciate if, like me, you like to buy a back up ahead of running out of your most used products.  It is in a glass bottle though which looks great but isn't too travel friendly and I'm conscious of keeping it to the back of my bathroom shelf, so as to avoid any smashing disasters if I knock it off...!

I always enjoy reviewing Avene products as I know that they wont irritate my skin.  I've reviewed their Extremely Rich Compensating Cream here and their Eau Thermale Thermal Spring Water here and I'm currently trying out a cleanser, toner and moisturiser so expect reviews from them in the coming weeks.  I always like to thoroughly test out a products before I give my thoughts and recommendations on it so please bear with me!

Have you tried this product?  Do you use a serum? If so, what is your favourite?

Sunday, 15 April 2012

WhatLauraDid: Week 16

Me and Clare at Grand National Ladies Day, Aintree
This week has been yet another busy week for me, mostly taken up by the excitement of going to Ladies Day at Aintree with my gorgeous friend Clare.  Whilst I will save the majority of my commentary and photographs for the actual WhatLauraWore to the races post, I cannot help but voice what a fantastic time I had.  The day as a whole was right up my street and I will most certainly be going again.  I did vlog some of the day too which ill also share with you shortly.

I have some great news; I've officially lost 3 stone and 1 pound! I'm over the moon and so proud of myself however it hasn't all been roses...  This week I've felt a little loss of confidence, or more that I have to really try to be confident, and a little self conscious.  I think it is just with losing weight as I'm between clothing sizes and my shape is changing so I feel as though nothing fits as it should do. I'd just like to say thank you to all the lovely people who tweeted me @whatlauraloves over the last couple of days, you've really made me smile and reassured me when I needed it.  THANK YOU :*

I posted a review of MAC Matte Bronze this week which is my favourite powder to contour with and I also posted a quick WhatLauraWore post wearing my new, very coral, outfit.

What have you been up to this week?  Did you have a flutter on the Grand National?

Thursday, 12 April 2012

WhatLauraLoves: Coral by the Sea

Hello Everyone

Today is a good day, for many many reasons, lets just say that sometimes good things just happen to good people!  Tomorrow I'm going to VIP ladies day at Aintree with my gorgeous friend Clare which I'm so excited about.  I'm just about to leave to travel down to hers this evening but first of all I thought I'd share with you some photos from when Mr WLL and I went walking on the beach next to where we live.

WARNING: New Look and Jack Wills Overload!


WhatLauraWore:
Coral kimono from New Look
Pretty scull top from New Look
Coral leggings from New Look
Sunglasses from New Look
Pink and white flip flops from Jack Wills
Coral bag from Jack Wills
Coral heart earrings from New Look



I hope you're all having a fantastic week, I cant wait to fill you all in with whats happening with me in my WhatLauraDid post this week!

Oh and if you have any tips for the races tomorrow at Aintree, please tweet me @whatlauraloves !!

Monday, 9 April 2012

MAC Matte Bronze

MAC Matte Bronze, £18.50
MAC Matte Bronze is my new favourite powder to use as a contour whenever I apply my makeup.  In the pan, it has a slight frost finish to it but this doesn't transfer to the skin; it is completely matte.  The powder is fairly well pigmented and the colour is a light muddy brown, very natural and not orange or shimmery.  This shade is perfect for light skin tones.  Contouring is so important to define and sculpt your face; it's like an optical illusion and great for making your face look slimmer.  I use MAC Matte Bronze to contour down the sides of my nose, occasionally through my eye socket and always in a '3' formation around the side of my face and under my chin.  Depending on the look that I am wanting to achieve or the area of my face that I am focusing on, I apply this powder using a combination of the MAC 138 Tapered Face Brush, 165 Tapered Cheek/Highlight Brush and the Bare Escuentals Flawless Face Brush.

I don't need to worry about applying this with a light hand, unlike other contour powders.  I apply it as I normally would with any powder and then for nights out, I apply a little more for an even more defined, sculptured effect.  The colour builds really well and the application is very smooth which I can only credit to the finely milled, smooth formulation.  I will definitely be repurchasing this.  I've had it for about 2 and a half months now and I'm only just hitting pan, so its great value for money too.
MAC Matte Bronze, £18.50
I would say that MAC Matte Bronze is comparable to Hoola by Benefit in that it is a muddy brown, as opposed to completely orange toned and it is matte.  However it is much more wearable than Hoola as it isn't as dark and you don't need to worry about applying it with a very light hand.  All in all, if you're fair skinned like me then I'd definitely recommend the MAC Matte Bronze powder over others I've tried.

Which powder do you like to contour with?

Sunday, 8 April 2012

WhatLauraDid: Week 15


Happy Easter!

After some 13 hour work days at the beginning of the week, I have enjoyed my 3 days off for Easter.  I've been to the cinema a couple of times but apart from that, I've slept and read my Kindle and that's about it.  Very relaxing.  It has felt great to just lounge around in my jarmies doing absolutely nothing.  I'd highly recommend it if you're stressed, overly tired or just in need of a break!!  We had an Easter themed day at work on Thursday and we had to bring in decorated hard boiled eggs.  Mr WLL and I made a Pirates of the Caribbean themed one and I must say it was brilliant.  I won the competition for it too.  We also had to bring in a silly hat.  My colleague brought me in the one I'm wearing in the photo above... and yes, I did go on a video conference call wearing it!

This week on WhatLauraLoves, I reviewed a couple of antibacterial products from Milton, I did a comparison post between Estee Lauder Double Wear and Estee Lauder Doubler Wear Light and I also posted about a couple of really cute iPhone covers that I picked up in Asda.

What have you been up to for Easter?  Did you receive many chocolate eggs?

Saturday, 7 April 2012

Cute iPhone 4/4S Covers

Since getting the iPhone 4 last year and upgrading to the iPhone 4s a couple of months ago, I've tried umpteen different covers from plastic ones with holes in that trapped so much dirt to the very cute Rabito who's ears and fluffy tail proved to be a little difficult to manoeuvre into my clutch bags.  Its safe to say that up until now, I've wasted a lot of money on completely impractical phone covers, that was until I discovered these from Asda Living...

Strawberry and Flamingo iPhone 4/4S cases from Asda, £8


These are both incredibly cute, I couldn't decide between them so I bought both and at only £8 each they're great value for money.  There's loads of different designs and they do them for other phones too.  What I like most about them is that they just hug the sides of my phone and across the back.  I'm sure anyone with a touch screen phone, particularly an iPhone, will agree that its awful to find a cover that laps over onto the front of the iPhone as it makes it difficult to type and you can end up pressing the wrong letter, etc.  These covers are great as they don't cover the front of the iPhone at all.

What cover do you have on your phone?  If you know any good apps for the iPhone then please let me know!

Friday, 6 April 2012

Estee Lauder Double Wear VS. Double Wear LIGHT

Over the past year, I've been wearing both Estee Lauder Double Wear and Double Wear Light as part of my make up routine.  There are some marked differences between the two products and both have their pros and cons.  After reviewing Double Wear here and more recently, Double Wear Light here, I have decided to do a post comparing the two foundations as I know that this would have been very helpful for me when I was initially deciding upon whether to buy DW or DW Light.

My personal favourite out of the two is Double Wear Light but I'll leave you to make up your own mind...

Estee Lauder Double Wear
compared to
Estee Lauder Double Wear Light
Estee Lauder Double Wear and Double Wear Light
Packaging

The outer packages of both foundations are both blue cardboard Estee Lauder designed boxes, nothing groundbreaking but lovely all the same.  I think it is worthwhile noting the packaging housing the actual product here too, the regular Double Wear is in a glass bottle which means that you have to pour it out so sometimes I end up wasting some or trying to scoop it back inside. If you buy a pump separately then you don't have this problem but it would be much more handy if the bottle came with one in the first place. It's also easy to waste a lot of the product this way once you start coming to the end of the bottle. Whilst I love the look of products in glass bottles, they aren't very durable and I personally would be gutted if I dropped this or smashed it while travelling.  For that reason, I much prefer the packaging of Double Wear Light, as the plastic squeezy tube is slimline, durable and travel friendly.

Availability, Price and Selecting a Shade

Both are available widely online and from Estee Lauder counters for £26.50 each which I would say is an accurate price for the high quality of the foundations.  I have occasionally seen both DW and DW Light available for around £18 at a CCO although the shades are limited so if I see them in my shade then I stock up!  I usually buy Estee Lauder products direct from their website, from Boots or from many department stores like Debenhams and House of Fraser.

There is a much greater variation of shades in the Double Wear foundation than the Double Wear Light which tends to be in intensities rather than lots of individual shades.  This doesn't hinder your chances of finding a Light foundation to suit you as the intensities are designed to suit a range of shades within a particular skin tone and it does adapt to some extent and blend very well on the skin.  Personally I prefer this as I can use Double Wear Light in one shade regardless of whether I am lightly tanned or not whereas I have to have two separate bottles of the regular Double Wear.

Application and Blending
DW is very fast drying and more difficult to blend than DW Light, particularly if you're just starting out with makeup. I find that it is best applied using my fingertips as this warms up the foundation and gives me just that little bit more time to blend it. Although I hate washing the foundation off my hands afterwards, it takes a while to budge! I much prefer applying DW Light as I use my favourite foundation brush, the Sigma F80 Flat Top Kabuki brush which allows me to really buff the foundation into my skin. The finish it leaves is fantastic. I can blend DW Light and DW seamlessly however for those who aren't used to DW, it is important to note that you do need to make sure you blend the foundation down your neck and be careful not to let it settle in your hair line, etc.

I find that I don't always need to powder DW but I do out of habit for nights out, however I do powder DW Light... although this is probably again out of habit... and I do like a very matte looking face. At the moment I'm using Rimmel Stay Matte powder however my favourite is the Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection powder.


Coverage, Longevity, Finish and Skin Type Suitability
I do slightly disagree with the types of coverage that Estee Lauder target each foundation as.  DW Light is targeted as a sheer to medium coverage foundation, however I would say it is definitely a medium coverage and DW is described as medium coverage however, I would say it is a more full coverage foundation. 


Both Double Wear and Double Wear Light claim to have 15 hour wear, I would say that this is the case for both on a normal days wear (i.e. not doing anything too strenuous and sweaty!) however Double Wear does oxidise so I prefer wearing it only for nights out and Light for every other occasion.  DW leaves a very matte, oil free finish and DW Light leaves a natural matte finish.  They are very similar except that DW feels much heavier on the skin than the Light version and feels more powdery.  When wearing DW you can definitely feel that you are wearing makeup whereas depending on how much powder you use after applying DW Light, it can feel as though you're wearing very little makeup, which I personally prefer.  I find that DW is best nights out as it is a little too heavy for your average daytime activities however DW Light is perfect for both daytime and night time wear so if you're looking for an all rounder, DW Light is the foundation for you!


Both foundations contain powder but the DW has a much higher powder content than the DW Light and for that reason, I find that I need to apply moisturiser before I use DW whereas I don't before I use DW Light (I just like to!).  DW is not suitable for those who have dry or very dry skins, in my opinion, because it contains so much powder and would cling to dry areas however it is perfect for oily skin.  Whilst I wouldn't recommend Double Wear Light for those with extremely dry skin, I do think that it would be ok for those with dry skin and of course, normal, combination and oily skin.


If you're looking for some photos to compare the two, check out my Double Wear Review and my Double Wear Light Review.

Both foundations can be bought from Debenhams, Estee Lauder and Boots.

If you have any questions that I haven't covered here or in my reviews, then feel free to ask me.
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Thursday, 5 April 2012

Spring Cleaning- Milton Germ Fighters

A lot of the things we use the most are the things that carry the most germs as they tend to be the items we clean the least, from makeup bags to mobile phones.  With such personal items carrying lots of germs, I dread to think about public places as well!  I'm very conscious of making sure that my home is clean, particularly my bedding which I change regularly as sleeping on a dirty pillow full of germs and bacteria can give you spots and be really bad for your skin.  I was recently asked if I would like to try out some products by Milton, the sterilising experts, and today I'm going to share my thoughts with you on the products I tried.

Milton Antibacterial Surface Wipes
Milton Antibacterial Surface Wipes, pack of 30 for £2.99

I have to be careful when using cleaning products as they can really irritate my skin with having psoriasis but I'm happy to say that these wipes didn't sting at all.  They don't contain any bleach, they are alcohol based and fragrance free.  They are really easy to use like any normal wipe, you don't need to rinse the surface that you have wiped and the surface dries straight away without leaving a residue or changing the texture or appearance of the item, only to make it look clean.

There are some things that I neglect to clean as often as I should like my make up bag and my mobile phone.  I always make sure that my makeup brushes are clean but often neglect my makeup bag, which completely defeats the object- what is the point in cleaning my makeup brushes if they are going to be stored in a dirty make up bag?!  Makes sense really doesn't it!  I have been cleaning out my makeup bags recently, putting any stained ones through the washing machine and for the others, I have been wiping them clean using the Milton Anti Bacterial Surface Wipes which have worked really well to keep them clean and germ free.  Since my iphone really needs to be surgically removed from my hand, I thought I would have a go at cleaning it using one of these wipes and I was so surprised to see the amount of dirt that came off it, probably a mixture of makeup and dirt from inside my bag.  I have also taken these wipes to the office that I work in to wipe down my desk area, keyboard and mouse.  Germs can spread so quickly in an office, particularly there's air con and people are sharing desks and alike.  As such, I like to keep my desk area hygienically clean.  Thinking about it, I should really wipe down some of my most used handbags too.  I wouldn't dream about putting one of my Louis through the washing machine so using a wipe is the best alternative; they are used so often as I carry them about with me into shops, public toilets, all over in places full of germs... *shudders at the thought!*

Milton Antibacterial Hand Gel
Milton Anibacterial Hand Gel, £2.19 for 100ml

The Milton Antibacterial Hand Gel is designed to be used to disinfect hands by killing bacteria, fungi and viruses in seconds.  It is available in a small travel sized bottle that is perfect for popping into your handbag or makeup bag.  You simply squirt a small amount into the palm of your hands and rub them together, making sure to get around your fingernails and inbetween your fingers.  Its really easy to use and can be used anywhere as there is no need to rinse.  I keep this in my makeup kit to disinfect my hands, particularly before doing others makeup.  Again, like with the wipes, it doesn't irritate or sting my skin.  Everyone should carry a hand gel with them, whether it be for cleaning hands after being on public transport or for cleaning your little ones hands after a trip down at the farm!


Milton Antibacterial Surface Wipes and Hand Gel

Milton products are available in the baby aisle of supermarkets and pharmacies and they are also available online here.

Have you tried any Milton products?  Do you clean your belongings as often as you perhaps should?