Skincare Routine.

I thought that since I have mentioned my favourite skincare quite a lot in recent posts that I would do a post on how I use them and all that jazz. My skincare routine is fairly simple since I am too lazy to have a full on routine, even though my skin  would probably benefit from it! I also have Birchbox to thank for sending me some awesome skincare products which have now become possible staples in my skincare routine.

All of these products have been mentioned in my Birchbox and Collective Haul Over April posts alongside some other products so if you haven’t already and would like to then please click the links to have a read!

DSC_0077AThe first thing I’ll do is remove all of my make-up using the Liz Earle Hot Cloth Cleanser. This stuff removes my make-up like no other. I’ll apply this all over my face using circular motions and I leave my eyes until last so I don’t rub my eye make-up over my entire face. Then I’ll take the Muslin cloth and get it damp using hot water, ring the water out and then wipe it over my face. I literally have to use two swipes and my make-up has been removed! Sometimes, if I have been wearing heavy eye make-up I will use a little extra cleanser just to make sure everything is gone. This is also great to use in the morning, the tea tree makes you feel fresh and awake.

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Once my make-up has been removed I like to exfoliate. I love the Dr Jart+ Clear Away Gel. I’ll apply a small amount to my fingertips, rub together and then apply this to my face. I’ll rub it in using circular motions for about a minute and then rinse this off with cold water. I love this because you can actually see and feel it working. Afterwards your face feels super soft and clear.

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When my face has been cleansed and exfoliated, I like to take a little bit of bio oil and pat this onto my face. This helps with all sorts of stuff but I like using it because I typically have dry/normal skin type. This makes it feel moisturised and healthy and I have zero visible dry patches. Since using this I find that make-up sits a lot easier and it doesn’t sit it any creases. I don’t use this every evening because you only need a small amount and it will keep your skin hydrated for several days. A little goes a long way. My sister also uses this regularly so I haven’t been getting through this bottle alone. It also helps with dark spots and scarring, so its great to use after having a breakout. DSC_0076A

Next step is serum! Serums are so important in skincare because they add extra hydration. This one is lovely because it sinks into the skin really quickly, even after using oil, my skin drinks this stuff up! Again, I don’t use this every evening and if I’m using oil I might skip this step, or I alternate between the two. This product is so expensive so it’s only in my routine until it runs out and then I doubt I will be purchasing it, but I’ve loved using it whilst I have it and I’m trying to make the most of it!

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As I mentioned in my Haul, I have used the Simple Moisturiser for a really long time. It’s pretty lightweight and doesn’t take a long time to set. I’ll apply this all over my face and down my neck.

The Eyebalm I only use in the evenings. After a long day when my eyes are hurting from staring at a computer screen all day or if I’ve been outside and squinting from the sunshine, I love using this. It soothes my eyes and makes me feel a lot more relaxed. I tend to suffer from insomnia so this really helps when my eyes are hurting but I can’t sleep!

I’m usually super lazy when it comes to skincare so it has to be quick and effortless! What are your go to skincare products when you’re feeling lazy or if you’re in a rush?

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May Birchbox 2015 Free Your Mind

In my Birchbox Favourites post I asked if anyone would like to see monthly reviews of my Birchboxes and a few of you said you would! If you would like to see my favourites from my first 4 Birchboxes then please go and check out that post because I talk about some really lovely products!

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This months theme is “Free your mind” and the box itself is for you to design with your own colours. Not only is the design super pretty but you get the cutest little pencils too! I love the concept of this box and if you have read any of my older posts, then you might have seen my A Book To Pass The Time post. If you haven’t then I talk about a colouring book that is full of quirky and adorable designs for you to colour in. Adult colouring books are actually becoming a thing now and I think they’re a great idea! Perfect for de-stressing. They also help get your creativity flowing so pick up those pencils!

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My favourite product in this months box is probably this nail varnish! This was this month’s sample pick which I actually didn’t get to choose because I’m awful at checking the Birchbox website to see if they’re doing sample picks. The choices were a nail art pen, nail press ons or a nail varnish from the brand WAH London. I received the nail varnish in Baby Gurl. I always love this colour nail varnish for spring/summer. A perfect baby pink.

DSC_0096ANormally I find that with these colour nail varnish, in pink shades, you don’t get great colour pay off and you’re left with streaky, translucent and highly disappointing product on your nails which is immediately removed. Not this one though and props to WAH London because you’ve completely won me over!

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Next is this Jelly Pong Pong Caribbean Sun Bronzer Duo in Martinique. This comes in adorable packaging with a mirror, which I love in these little compact cases. It means I can chuck this in my bag and have a mirror on the go.

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Unfortunately though, the product isn’t that great. In my swatch below you can barely even see the colours. It hardly looks like I’ve swatched them at all. But of course I wouldn’t let the swatches do all of the talking. When I tested this little duo out on my face the bronzer ended up doing better than expected. It adds very subtle colour. This works well on fair skin or it would be great if you’re a newbie when it comes to bronzer and the idea of being bright orange terrifies you, you can’t over do it with this one. The blusher goes a little further and has slightly more pigment. You can build this up but again you can’t over do it. It adds a lovely rosy glow. This duo is perfect for those ‘no make-up’ make-up days.

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This Parlour Moisturising Sea Salt Spray was a little disappointing to find in this months box. Having naturally curly hair, which I rarely straighten, a sea salt spray is simply useless to me. However, I didn’t want to leave it un-reviewed. So I kindly asked my, beautiful, two oldest nieces to test this product out for me (they reluctantly agreed after some polite persuasion).

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They both have a very similar hair type. Here they are side by side, on the left is Courtney with no product and on the right is Bailey. Both of them tried the product, I only photographed Bailey with the product in. We found that it works better on damp hair and using a diffuser to dry (the huge terrifying contraption that comes with your hair-dryer and usually gets forgotten about). Courtney told me that she didn’t like the way the spray felt in her hair because it left her hair crunchy. Bailey liked the way her hair looked afterwards but wasn’t sure if she wanted to use it again. I would say it did a pretty good job at adding a slight wave to the hair and is good for achieving the beach waves that everybody loves but if you don’t like crispy hair then this probably isn’t for you.

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Next up is the Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Tinted Moisturiser in Light. I was excited to find this product in my box since I don’t own any tinted moisturiser and I’m always seeing different ones being talked about but I’ve never been sure which one to go for. Despite this though, I don’t think tinted moisturisers are for me. I like a medium coverage when it comes to make-up and because this is only a moisturiser you can barely notice it on your skin. It does even out skin tone and obviously hydrates the skin but after using this I went and put foundation over it anyway because I wanted more coverage, which defeats the object!

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Last but not least is the Lumiere d’hiver Recontructing Masque. Firstly, lets talk about liquid products that come in a sachet. There is nothing quite as disappointing. I feel like the majority of the product goes to waste because I can’t get it out, especially when its a conditioner and I’m in the bath, doesn’t really call for easy handling. Secondly, opening these little buggers is always an issue for me. It took me like 10 minutes and I had to use my teeth, not really ideal. Anyway, the product itself is rather nice but I just didn’t have enough to cover my entire head of hair, I had just about enough to do the ends. My hair looks and feels soft but I didn’t have enough product to give this a decent review. So the product could be great! I’m leaving this one down to the sample size. 😦DSC_0099AIf you are interested in subscribing to Birchbox then you can use my referral link – https://www.birchbox.co.uk/invite/amberelizabeth. If you would like to know more about Birchbox then you can visit their site here.

Thank you for reading and don’t forget to follow me!

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Collective Haul over April!

Over the entirety of April I found myself picking up bits and pieces and by the end of the month I had bought a whole load of stuff – Sorry bank account! I thought it would be interesting to share with you all since I love reading hauls and seeing what people have bought. Plus I have two feelunique vouchers for 10% off for two readers at the end of this blog post, so keep reading to find out how you can get one of them!

DSC_0091AOne of the first things I picked up this month was this really pretty, ivory duster jacket from Primark. I picked it up at random because I saw it and liked it. After I had bought this I was in Miss Selfridge and saw that they had one similar to this for £65, so I’m pretty happy that I got this one for only £17. I love a good bargain!

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There was a Groupon voucher for 40% off feelunique about two weeks ago so I decided to pick up a few bits from there, since it was such a great offer. Firstly I want to talk about the Urban Decay Naked 3 palette. I have wanted one of these for so long and when it came to buying one I wasn’t sure which to get! I loved all of the colours in this one so I chose it, but I do plan on getting one (or both) of the other two at some point.

The eye shadow palette also came with 4 little sachets of 4 different eye primers from Urban Decay. I believe the palette used to come with a bottle of their primer potion but I guess they stopped doing that, or it only came with the Naked palette. Either way I’m pretty happy that I get to try out some of their eye primers.

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Next I picked up this Rimmel London Kate Moss Lasting Finish lipstick in no.8. This is one of the first lipsticks I ever bought but it disappeared (I think my niece stole it!) and I meant to pick a new one up ages ago, so I finally did and I love it just as much as I did when I first bought it.

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Lastly on feelunique I picked up the Bourjois happy luminous primer. I have wanted a primer for ages but couldn’t find one that was affordable but also had good reviews. This is super lightweight and my foundation sits so much nicer on my skin after using this. It seems like a big bottle but its only 15ml and it cost £10, but it’s worth it because you only use a small amount of product at a time. If I continue getting along with this product it’s likely that it will become a staple.

I also picked up a new concealer, I usually use the Bourjois Healthy Mix concealer, Bourjois is my favourite drugstore brand in case you couldn’t guess, but I wanted to give something else a go so I picked up this Maybelline Super Stay 24 hour concealer. I don’t know about 24 hour but I do like how this sits. It’s not drying and doesn’t crease under my eyes but it definitely works better at covering up spots, which I find with most drugstore concealers.

I also had an impulse trip to B&Q one day and saw that they did Yankee candles! I love Yankee candles but they’re so expensive! These little tart melts were only 99p. I also picked up a large jar in Sweet Pea which was only £12, which is great for Yankee candles big jars! No photo though because I have been burning it every day since I bought it and the jar is kind of gross now, oops!

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Some skincare products which I picked up were the Simple Kind To Skin Replenishing Rich Moisturiser (why are the names always so long??) and the Kind To Eyes Soothing Eye Balm. I have used the moisturiser for the longest time now and it is yet to fail me! I picked up the eye balm on a whim because I tend to get really dry and puffy under my eyes, I didn’t expect much from it since the consistency is really lightweight but it is soothing, so I guess it does what it says!

DSC_0073ALastly, for you lovely readers I have two feel unique vouchers for those who haven’t bought from feelunique but would like to, for 10% off your first purchase! Feel unique has loads of great products and I got these two vouchers when I ordered from them. I would give them to my sisters but I wasn’t sure that they would actually use them and I don’t want them to go to waste. So if you would like these vouchers then I will give them to the first two people who comment and say why they would like a voucher, please leave your email so I can send you the code! This isn’t a competition so they will go to the first two people, you must be following my blog here and on bloglovin’, I am offering these because I want them to be used!

Thank you as always for reading my post and hello to my new followers! I just passed 80 which I am pretty happy about and I’m getting more excited the closer it gets to 100!

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Birchbox Favourites January – April

At the beginning of the year I decided to subscribe to Birchbox after toying around with the idea for a few months. I looked at a lot of different brands of subscription services and decided to go with Birchbox as it seemed like one of the most popular and also the most affordable. If you want to know more about Birchbox you can read about it here.

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So far I haven’t been disappointed with the products, there are only a few which I haven’t used because I don’t like them for whatever reason, but since they’re only samples I don’t feel bad for not using them. Since January I have received four boxes, some featuring a theme and one which didn’t have a theme. All of them have had some really lovely products so I thought I would talk a bit about them. I haven’t reviewed any products on the blog before and I thought this would be interesting for anyone who likes the idea of a subscription box but isn’t really sure what they’d get and if they would like them. When you sign up you fill out a profile, stating the things you would like and wouldn’t like etc. So you shouldn’t get anything that isn’t to your fancy.

I can’t  remember exactly which products came in which box because I use them frequently so I didn’t think to keep the little card that comes with the box which tells you about the products.  If you’d like to see monthly reviews of each box then please let me know and I will do them.

These are my favourite products so far:

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Dr Jart+ Clear Away Gel

I really like this product. It came full size which was really exciting because I was only expecting samples when I signed up. My skin loves this stuff. Since using it my skin has been clearer and a lot smoother. Goodbye spots!

Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Serum

It makes me sad that this only comes in a tiny tube! I’ve been using this sparingly because I don’t want it to run out. Whenever I use this my skin always looks and feels really hydrated. My make up goes on so lovely when using this. I wish it didn’t cost £45 to buy a full size! I can’t justify spending that much on one product. If you know of any great affordable drug store serums please let me know down below.

Activbod Cooling Finishing Lotion

If you’ve read any of my previous blog posts you might know that I exercise quite a lot. This came in one of the first Birchboxes I received but I only started using it recently. I’ve used it when I’ve worked out but had to quickly go out after or if it has been a really intense workout and I need something to instantly cool off.

Pommade Divine Remedy Balm

This product can be used for all sorts of stuff like dry skin, itchy skin, peeling, flaking etc. I used this on my tattoo after I had just had it done and it kept the peeling, from healing, to a minimum. I have also used this on my lips overnight when they have been really chapped and the next day they were completely healed! I was amazed by how quick it had worked.

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Percy & Reed Volumising No Oil Oil

I have used oil in my hair for quite a while now. It’s naturally curly so it can be really dry, especially at the ends. I was intrigued by this No Oil Oil and whether it would work for me or not. I was surprised when it did and just as well as my normal product and because it has no oil you can use this from root to tip, so I don’t have to worry about using this near my roots. No greasy hair which is always a bonus!

KMS California Tame Frizz Crème

I use this product every single time after washing my hair. It’s a pretty big sample size so it has lasted quite a long time. It does exactly what it says it does, tames frizz and has a light hold. Can’t really go wrong and I’m thinking of buying this in full size because I love it so much.

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Laura Mercier Longwear Crème Eye-liner in Violet

This came in this months Birchbox and at first I wasn’t sure about it because it’s purple and I’ve only ever used brown or black eye-liner. I really like the way this looks in the waterline, it adds a subtle pop of colour and it lasts a long time when worn normally. I can see myself using this until it’s all gone.

That’s it for my favourites in the Birchboxes from this year so far. I love getting new products to test out and try.

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