Category Archives: Beauty

My five minute make-up routine

My quick 5 minute make-up routine

I only really started wearing make-up in my thirties, and even now I’ll have stretches of time when I won’t bother. But then I do and I remember why I love it. A little bit of make-up makes me feel like a better version of myself. I do it entirely for me, not for others. 

These days my two key requirements are time and quality. I like a quick five-minute (or less) routine that’ll give me a glow with minimum effort. To achieve this I’ve learnt that it’s worth investing in good quality products which seem to go much further and look much better.

Here’s my dream team:

Mini Miracle Eye Wand by Charlotte Tilbury (shade 2), £29. One end contains a moisturiser, the other a concealer. Applying the moisturiser first stops things looking cakey. I do a quick sweep then rub it in with my fingers.

Light Wonder foundation by Charlotte Tilbury (shade 3), £32. Yes it’s expensive, but a little goes a long way. I use a 5p size piece and either use my fingers or a flat-bristled foundation brush to apply it. It evens out my skin tone without looking (or feeling) heavy. I had my colour matched in the Cambridge John Lewis store.

Instant Look in a Palette by Charlotte Tilbury, £49. These limited-edition palettes are the dream. They contain blush, bronzer and highlighter – plus eyeshadows. I sweep it all over quickly for a light, flattering look. It’s so easy and looks great!

Cloud Paint by Glossier (beam), £15. I use this cream blush when I want a bolder colour on my cheeks. A tiny dot of this on each cheek creates a gorgeous rosy glow. I just rub it on with my fingers.

Mac Blotting Powder, £22.50. My mascara kept smudging, so I invested in this stuff. Putting it on under your eyes is supposed to help, and it has! Something to do with moisture. Anyway, it works. A quick dab before my mascara means no panda eyes.

Sumptuous Bold Volume mascara by Estee Lauder, £23. A nice to apply mascara that makes my lashes look gorgeously thick. I only use a quick sweep of the brush for daytime.

Secret Selma lipstick by Charlotte Tilbury (£24). My perfect neutral shade. Not too dressy or red, it’s just the perfect natural pink. You’ll find me wearing it in almost all of my photos.

My quick 5 minute make-up routine

These are the products I reach for each day. There’s a lot of Charlotte Tilbury as this is a brand I now really love and trust – and that’s important when you’re buying make-up, isn’t it? I’d love to hear about your favourite products – drop me a line in the comments below!

Spring beauty favourites

Spring beauty routine

Anyone else get really excited about new beauty products in spring? As we move into warmer weather, my outlook changes and so does my skin!

Most of these products aren’t actually new, but they’re new to me. Here’s what I’m loving right now.

Spring beauty routine

Pixi Nourishing Skin Balm. I’m a big fan of hot cloth cleansing. This balm turns to an oil on your skin and is great at getting rid of make-up. It’s gentle but thorough. I have classic combination skin so don’t want to dry my skin out too much and encourage it to make more oil. This stuff is great and I’ve been using it for about six months now. One tub lasts me a few months.

Pixi Glow Tonic. I first started using this toner last summer and I’m still a big fan. It’s not too harsh, but gives me a satisfying tingle after cleansing! I wouldn’t be without it now.

Midnight Recovery Concentrate by Kiehls. This stuff in amazing. I’ve been using it every evening since November and the change in my skin has been noticeable. It’s hard to put my finger on what’s different – other than it just looks better and I get far fewer breakouts. I love the nightly ritual of massaging a few drops of this scented oil into my face. It’s a real luxury and a bottle lasts long time (unless your cats knock it over in the middle of the night). I use this at night and stick to a simple Liz Earle moisturiser during the day.

Bondi Sands fake tan

I’ve never been confident with fake tan, but this year I’m determined to boost my glow. My skin never really goes very brown, so it’s great to have a helping hand. I’ve been using Bondi Sands self-tanning foam for a subtle golden effect. I’m an anxious fake tanner, but this stuff is reasonably easy to apply and I didn’t get any streaks. I exfoliated with Clarins body scrub beforehand which definitely helped.

Magic Organic Apothecary

Finally, I must tell you about Fortifying Green Bath Potion. A big bottle is quite an investment so I was thrilled to find this little sample bottle (£4) for sale in a local shop. It was just enough for one bath. It’s full of exhilarating things like fir and peppermint and it’s amazing. Zingy, reviving and perfect for aching muscles. I’m going to invest in a big bottle soon!

What are your beauty favourites right now?

My favourite autumn beauty buys

My favourite autumn beauty buys

Autumn weather is notoriously unpredictable. Rain, wind and spending more time indoors can all play havoc with our hair and skin. Now, more than ever, I need a little helping hand to keep me looking good.

Which means buying new beauty products! I’ve made a few new discoveries lately and I’d like to share them with you.

Pixi glow tonic

Pixi Glow Tonic

Instagram is a great enabler when it comes to buying new products – especially when you live in the sticks and get bored with your local branch of Boots. I’d never even heard of Pixi Glow Tonic, but after reading all the rave reviews, I wanted to give it a try too. What is it? It’s an exfoliating toner, which you use after cleansing. It contains glycolic acid, which helps to refine pores. This, plus aloe vera, is supposed to improve your complexion and give you glowing skin.

Does it work? Yes, although don’t expect miracles. The thing I love about this tonic is the genuine glow it gives my complexion. Even on no-make-up days, the overall appearance of my skin is better. I haven’t noticed much difference in my pores, which is a little disappointing – but for the glow alone, I’ll be sticking with this tonic. It’s quite expensive, but the bottle is enormous.

Charlotte Tilbury Mini Miracle Eye Wand

Mini-miracle eye wand, by Charlotte Tilbury

I’ve been looking for a new under-eye concealer and this one is a bit special. In one end, there’s a hydrating eye cream, and in the other is a clever light-reflecting concealer. You apply the cream first, then apply the concealer over the top. I often find that my under-eye make-up has a dry and caked appearance – with the concealer settling into all the fine lines. This wand claims to solve that problem.

Charlotte Tilbury Mini Miracle Eye Wand

Does it work? Yes, definitely. After applying this clever duo, I look so much more awake. As you’d expect from a Charlotte Tilbury product, it also feels amazing to apply. The cream soothes my eyes in the morning and the whole area looks revived. I definitely notice the difference on the days when I don’t wear it. This is now a firm favourite. I use shade 2, which suits my skin tone very well.

Schwarzkopf Got2b Styling Oil

My last beauty favourite is a bargain hair oil. I have very thick, wavy hair which does not cope well in autumn. Mists and mellow fruitfulness basically means an uncontrollable thatch of heavy hair. I’ve been applying this oil before I blow dry my hair, and to tame frizzy flyaways between washes.

Does it work? It’s brilliant stuff – my is hair soft and silky, plus it smells amazing. Clearly, no product can work miracles on wavy hair when the air damp, but this stuff is doing it’s best. If I get caught in the rain, it’s definitely looking less hedge-like. And for £4 a bottle, I will be stocking up.

What are you favourite beauty buys for autumn?