Thursday, 27 February 2014

Blog Tips || How I Blog

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I've been blogging for just over a year now, whilst studying for a fulll time, practical degree. It's taken me a while to finally get myself into a routine that I'm happy with and that works for both me and my blog. FYI I upload posts every other day at a time thats convenient to me. So today I thought I'd share with you how I blog and how I make blogging work for me. That's not to say these tips are going to work for everyone and I'm certainly not saying this is the 'right' way but I just thought you might like an insight into the workings of studentstylexo...

Firstly, my most important step is to take photos in bulk. This saves me so much time and makes taking pictures super easy. It also makes the photos for the week similar quality as they were taken at the same time. For me, the actual process of taking pictures is the most time consuming. Not only do I take the photos, which means positioning, sorting out lighting etc, I then also transfer them onto my laptop, edit them and then upload them to Flikr before adding them to Blogger. I try and do this early Saturday morning and edit and upload them that day. Not only does this mean it's out of the way, it's also an easy way to keep track of your posts for the week (something I really struggle with). I also love seeing my drafts section fill up, it gives me the motivation to get them finished!

Now that the pictures are uploaded, you're free to write your posts as and when you can. Since Christmas I've had 4 assignments and a dissertation to hand in so finding time to blog is hard. I like to blog using my Kindle whilst I'm watching tv which leaves the day time for uni work. Another tip is writing up posts in the notes section of your IPad whilst you're on the train or commuting and upload them later on.
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Remember, guest posting can be your best friend. Whether you can guest post for someone else or getting someone to guest post for you, you'll be attracting new readers to your blog. These past few months I've handed my blog over to some of my favourite bloggers to keep my posts regular. This is a lovely way of finding new blogs to read whilst easing your work load. I have a super busy  week next week so I've organised for three lovely bloggers to guest post for me!

I also keep a number of 'tag' posts as drafts for those days when I literally don't have time to blog. I love doing tag posts and they are so simple to write up, all you have to do is answers the questions and press publish, simple. This is also a useful tip for times when inspiration is lacking. It's a good idea to keep a few draft posts ready for if that ever happens, some ideas are tags, face of the day, instagram updates and wish list posts.

Have you found a routine that works? Have you used any of these tips yourself?
xo
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Tuesday, 25 February 2014

21st Birthday Beauty Wish List

21st wishlist

In a week and a days time, i'll be 21! Yes, i'm ridiculously excited and also terrified that i'm a whole year into my early 20's. That being said, birthdays can only mean high end makeup and cake, obviously! I thought i'd share with you the bits that i'm lusting after and will hopefully receive or be buying with my birthday money.

Firstly, I've always said I'd never buy a high end mascara but i've heard so many things about YSL Shocking Mascara and a birthday is the best time to splash out on slightly more expensive makeup bits. How beautiful is this Narsissist Blush Palette? I've been lusting after Laguna bronzer for forever and originally planned on asking for this for my birthday. That was until I saw this palette and for £35 it's pretty good value for money. I now think I prefer the At First Sight Eye & Cheek Palette though, whoops! Mac's Prep & Prime is another product that has been on my wish list forever, i'm really trying to get my contour and highlighting up to scratch and this seems like the perfect tool to help me. Another Nars product, Sheer Glow Foundation  i've seen so many reviews on this and as my Mac Studio Fix Fluid is running out I thought i'd give this a try. Now if you follow me on Twitter you'll notice that my lovely boyfriend has already ordered the Urban Decay Naked Palette for me. He very kindly bought me the Naked 3 for Christmas and offered to buy me this one too as the colours are so perfect! Finally is the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder I very rarely use powder anymore but that's because I haven't found the right one for me. Anna from Vivianna Does Makeup loves this, so fingers crossed I will too.

xo
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Sunday, 23 February 2014

Beauty Battle #02 || Foundation

Seventeen On the Spot, Mac Studio Fix Fluid and Maybelline Super Stay Better Skin FoundationSeventeen On the Spot, Mac Studio Fix Fluid and Maybelline Super Stay Better Skin Foundation

When it comes to foundation, i'm a picky gal. I want something full coverage that isn't cakey and one that leaves the perfect finish. For my second installment of my Beauty Battle series (here's #01) i've decided to show you my selection of low, mid and high end foundations...
Seventeen On the Spot Foundation
Firstly is the lower end foundation, Seventeen On The Spot Foundation retails for £6.99 and claims to provide you with clearer skin in 4 weeks. Let me start by saying I don't agree with that, it hasn't done anything my skin and i've used it for longer than 4 weeks. This is full coverage with SPF 15, I find this quite tacky and sticky to apply with both my fingers and the Real Techniques Buffing Brush. That being said, this does apply nicely with the Real Techniques Stippling Brush and leaves a semi-flawless finish. This lasts for around 5ish hours and then turns cakey and clings to my dry patches, I don't tend to wear this when I know that i'm going to be out for a long time but for days when i'm just 'chilling' this is my go to foundation.

Mac Studio Fix Fluid Foundation
At nearly 3 times the price of the Seventeen foundation we have the Mac Studio Fix Fluid. This was my first 'high end' foundation and boy was I impressed. I love the finish of this foundation, it's pretty much flawless due to its high coverage. I like using this with the Real Techniques Buffing Brush as it really blends into the skin, making it last all day. This is the only foundation I would feel comfortable going from day to night in. At £21.50 it is expensive but I've had the same bottle since around April and it's only just running out. That's with me using it pretty much every day so I have to say it's truly worth splashing out on, considering other similar foundations are around £8-£10 and last for nowhere near as long as this one.


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Finally, my mid range foundation is this brilliant one by Maybelline. I've already reviewed this here so I won't go into too much detail but basically if you want a high coverage foundation that doesn't break the bank and lasts on the skin all day, then this is for you. This is my go to foundation for during the day now, saving my Mac one for 'special occasions'. I prefer to apply this with my fingers rather than a brush as I find it gives me the best finish, flawless without looking cakey. Like the other two foundations, this also has SPF 20 which makes it perfect for the summer, as well as the light texture but the high coverage!

Overall, I would totally recommend both the Maybelline and Mac foundations if a flawless finish and high coverage is what you're after. I'd say the Maybelline is a kind of dupe for the Mac foundation so if you don't really have a Mac budget, Maybelline have created a brilliant alternative. The Seventeen foundation on the other hand may be much better suited to younger, teenage skin and I do wear this on a 'lazy day' but for me it isn't one that i'd enjoy wearing out the house.

Have you tried these foundations? Which is your favourite?
xo
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Friday, 21 February 2014

The New Black Noble Spirits By Christina Rinaldi Nail Varnish Collection || Review & Swatches

The New Black Noble Spirits By Christina Rinaldi || Review & Swatches
The New Black Noble Spirits By Christina Rinaldi || Review & Swatches
The New Black Noble Spirits By Christina Rinaldi || Review & Swatches
I admit it, I'm a nail varnish holder. I love pretty much all nail varnishes and these are no exceptions. The colour range is beautiful, I love the metallic edge these have, they're really edgy and unique. I've never tried anything from The New Black before but i'm so glad my first experience was with these.
 
As you can see from the nail wheel, the colours are beautiful. The gold and orange shades only needed one coat for a full cover, whereas the others took two, with the lightest blue needing three as it's pretty sheer. I'd never think of wearing gold nail varnish but it's so nice I've worn it several times since I received these. The orange is going to be absolutely lovely in summer, such a vibrant almost neon orange that would compliment a tan perfectly. The blue shades are like nothing I own and trust me I have a pretty good collection... again, perfect spring/summer shades. The lightest blue reminds me of a mermaid for some reason, it's a kind of turquoise blue with silvery glitter particles. Finally, the deep purple is stunning. I love most colours that leave a kind of black-ish finish and this is no exception.
 
This collection has definitely become my go to for a night out, all the colours bring something a little different and stand out againest most outfits. On me, these lasts for around a day without a top coat before they start chipping slightly, this is about average on my nails though so don't be put off by that.
 
Have you ever tried anything by The New Black?
xo
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Wednesday, 19 February 2014

February You Beauty Discovery Box || Review

February You Beauty Discovery Box || Review February You Beauty Discovery Box || Review Glam Glow Mud Mask February You Beauty Discovery Box || Review Teez Desert Metals Mascara February You Beauty Discovery Box || Review Teez Desert Metals Mascara February You Beauty Discovery Box || Review Charles Worthington Hair Treatment February You Beauty Discovery Box || Review Beyond Dark Chocolate

I've been looking at Beauty Boxes for the longest time now, i've been tempted by both Glossybox and Birchbox but the number of negative reviews has always put my off. That's when I found You Beauty Discover Box which offers two generous sized samples plus a healthy food treat and a little something extra. At £6.95 I couldn't say no so I thought i'd share with you what I picked.

This month, there were 10 items to choose from, all a generous size and all things I've wanted to try before. I initially wanted to try the Pixi Poreless and Flawless Primer but as that was out of stock I opted for the Glamglow Youthmud Tinglexfoliate Treatment. I haven't tried this yet, I'm keeping it to use before my birthday as it's supposed to leave you with glowing, photoready skin. I've heard lots of things about Glamglow and this is the perfect opportunity to try it before spending £££.

The next product I chose was the Teez Trend Cosmetics Desert Metals Mascara not that I needed another one but the packaging was too cute to resist. I have used this and I really like it, the brush is kind of tapered so it makes it super easy to reach the inner lashes. I love that this gives the lashes volume as that is what I need from my mascara, it does add length too but it's main job is volumising. I've not heard of the brand before but I'm definitely going to look into what else they sell.

My added treats were a Charles Worthington Volume & Bounce Treatment Mask. This brand is loved by Amelia Liana  and Tanya Burr used this before going to the BAFTAs so it's definitely going to be a winner in my eyes. I've actually just bought two other products from this range so i'm excited to try them all out. Finally, my 'healthy' treat included Beyond Dark - Moments of Pleasure which are some dark chocolate drops with a hint of orange. Unfortunately I don't like dark chocolate but my boyfriend was thankful for them!

Have you subscribed to a beauty box? Would you be tempted by You Beauty?
x
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Monday, 17 February 2014

Lotil Cream For Dry Skin || Review

Lotil Original Cream for dry skin
Lotil Original Cream for dry skin
Lotil Original Cream for dry skin


I've had eczema since before time begin, I have periods when my legs are red, itchy and inflamed and then having nothing for several month. I haven't had a flare up for quite some time and then this last month my legs have been ridiculously itchy.

Original Lotil Cream is designed to soften, heal and prevent chapped, cracked and dry skin:

Lotil Original Formula Skin Cream:

- Powerful emollients rapidly rehydrate

- Antibacterial & antifungal ingredients help reduce any infection
- Helps stop cuts and broken skin from stinging
- Non greasy and rapidly absorbed
- Can help combat athletes foot
- Soothes skin after shaving
- Soap replacement for sufferers of very dry skin conditions
- Antibacterial, antifungal and antiseptic
- Recommended by pharmacists, dermatologists, podiatrists & chiropodists.


I usually use Soap & Glory Sugar Crush Body Buttercream to moisturise my body but recently it's been irritating my legs. So I decided to try out Original Lotil Cream, I apply this after my shower mainly to my legs but when I feel a bit 'dry' I use this all over my body. I'd definitely recommend using this as a night time moisturiser rather than in a morning as the scent is quite strong. It smells very medicated and lasts on the skin for several hours.

The consistency is a kind of thick, creamy gel which is unlike any other moisturiser I've used before. I apply a generous amount to my legs and rub in until it's all sank in. It can take a while to rub in, another reason why I use this as night, but it doesn't leave you feeling oily or greasy so you can get straight in to your pjs.

I find that this instantly cools and soothes my legs, especially if I'm applying this because my eczema has flared up. It lasts for a couple of hours before you have to reapply but obviously if you apply before bed, it lasts all night. I keep the tub on my bedside table and the tube at my boyfriends so I'm always prepared.

I'd definitely recommend this for people with eczema or just terribly dry skin. It's thick, soothing and moisturising, exactly what you need in a cream for dry skin. I'll be repurchasing this when/if it runs out straight away as it does the job better than most creams I've used before.

Have you ever tried Lotil cream? If not, what soothes your itchy, dry sking?
xo
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Saturday, 15 February 2014

My Mac Lipstick Collection



 Mac Lipstick Collection

I've been building my Mac lipstick collection for nearly a year now and have managed to pick up five of the little babies so far. I love the colour range I've bought, I've tried to buy a variety of colours (except my Nicki lipstick but I couldn't resist). My next purchase is definitely going to be a nude colour, either Hue or Shy Girl I think.

Mac Lipstick Collection - Nicki

Mac Viva Glam Nicki - Satin Finish
I bought this lipstick from the airport before I went on holiday. The colour is the perfect bright pink without being to Barbieish, it looks gorgeous with a tan and also with my normal pale skin. The colour is very pigmented and has good lasting power, the satin finish makes it lasts for a while but it isn't as drying as a matte shade. I love Nicki Minaj so it was obvious I'd be buying a piece from her collection, I'm really happy with this one!

Mac Lipstick Collection - Vegas Volt
Mac Vegas Volt - Amplified Finish

I love this lipstick, it was the first that I bought and it has special memories for me. I love the orange colour, it looks pretty bright in the bullet but can be applied lightly for a less brighter appearance. The finish is amplified and leaves the lips moisturised and hydrated. I'd say this lasts for around 3 hours which isn't brilliant but the finish and colour makes it totally worth it.

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Mac Lovelorn - Lustre Finish

This is my every day shade, it's a 'your lips but better' shade, the picture looks quite bright but it's really not. This isn't drying at all, I really like the Lustre finish. It gives a kind of glossy finish without being too much. It lasts for around 3 hours on the lips and it fades quite evenly so it doesn't leave a horrible pink stain on he outer lip line.

Mac Lipstick Collection - Russian Red
Mac Russian Red - Matte Finish

This is my latest addition to my collection. I love a bright red lip, and this is perfect. You can see my post I did comparing this to two cheaper alternatives here but I absolutely love it. It's a gorgeous red with blue under tones which make your teeth appear lovely and white. This is a matte finish but again it's not too drying, like other Mac lipsticks. This lasts for ages, especially when it's applied with a lip liner and a lip brush. The lip liner makes it last longer and stops it from bleeding too much.

Mac Lipstick Collection - Rebel
Mac Rebel - Satin

Before I started blogging and collecting Mac lipsticks, I'd seen Rebel so many times and always wanted it. When Debenhams had 15% off I ordered this straight away. It's a dark plum colour, perfect for winter. Like Vegas Volt it can be applied lightly to make it more wearable, especially for day time. This is probably my most worn lipstick out of these five and I can see myself wearing this in the summer still. 


What's your favourite Mac Lipstick?

xo

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Thursday, 13 February 2014

Tanya Burr Lipgloss || Review & Swatches

Tanya Burr Lipgloss in shades Afternoon Tea & Picnic in the Park

Tanya Burr Lipgloss in Picnic in the Park

Tanya Burr Lipgloss in shade Afternoon Tea

Tanya Burr Lipgloss in shades Afternoon Tea & Picnic in the Park

Tanya Burr Lipgloss Swatches in shades Afternoon Tea & Picnic in the Park

I'm pretty sure every beauty blogger and their dog will have at least heard of Tanya Burr's new lipgloss and nail varnish range, I've already seen lots of posts! I've had my two lipglosses for about a week now so it's definitely about time I let you know what I think...

First stop, packaging. We all know i'm a sucker for cute packaging and Tanya Burr, you've sucked me right. My most favourite part is definitely the little black heart on the top, it looks so cute in my muji drawers. The tubes are really simple but nice, I like that you can see the colour of the product and the Tanya Burr signature makes it really personal. A few people have said that they think the packaging is childish but I disagree. Tanya has lots of younger viewers as well as older girls so I think she's created packaging that's the best of both worlds.

I love the colour range of both the lipglosses and the nail polishes but I decided to buy two shades; Picnic in the Park a pink colour and Afternoon Tea a nudey pink coral. Both of these colours are perfect for every day and extremely pigmented. It's not often that I wear a lip gloss without a lipstick underneath but this gives a full colour that last for several hours. The smell is gorgeous, it reminds me of strawberry chewits!  These definitely aren't sticky or tacky and leave the lips moisturised and glossy, with the perfect amount of colour.

I bought mine from Feel Unique on launch day but they are now being sold online at Superdrug too and i'm pretty sure they're going into stores in the future. I'm looking at getting some more of these, I love them that much. Well done Tanya!

xo
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Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Nspa Nourishing Eye and Lip Treatment || Review

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Nspa Nourishing Eye and Lip Treatment  

I've never been one of those girls who religiously take care of their lips but since getting into skincare, I admit I now exfoliate and moisturiser them every day. I've tried a few over the past few months but nothing has been as good as the Nspa eye and lip cream.

Firstly I'll start by saying this lip cream is probably not for everyone, it's quite a thick consistency and it has a perfumed taste. But don't let that put you off, it's honestly the best lip cream I've used. I find it best to apply this with my index finger, rub it and then blot the remainder onto a cotton pad. It sinks into the lips within a minute and the perfume taste lasts for around another minute more.

I wouldn't suggest using this during the day, simply because of the thick consistency but if your lips are extremely chapped this is for you. I'd thoroughly recommend this to anyone, I'd probably go as far as saying it's on 'holy grail' territory. It moisturisers my lips instantly and lasts for the night. If I'm suffering really bad, I'll apply this during the day, every few hours and my lips are back to normal in a matter of days. 

Have you tried any Nspa products before? What's your lip saviour?
xo
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Sunday, 9 February 2014

Revlon Colourburst Matte & Lacquer Balms || Review & Swatches

Revlon Colourburst Balms in 105 Demure and 235 Mischievous

I've never really jumped on the lip stain/crayon band wagon but these Revlon Colourburst Matte and Lacquer Balms really caught my eye. Firstly the packaging is right up my street, yes it's like every other lip crayon in the drugstore being that the colour of the packaging reflects the product but the simple matte and shiny tubes that these come in are lovely.

I decided to buy two balms, one matte and one lacquer and I really like both of them. At £7.99 they are pretty good value, although there are cheaper lipsticks that last longer than these do. The colour range is beautiful, I think there are 10 matte balms and 10 lacquer balms so i'm sure there will be something for everyone out there. Both shades have a rather minty scent but I think it's quite nice, when you reapply these later in the day it gives your mouth a really fresh feeling.

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Mischievous is the matte shade I picked up and it's a gorgeous bright orange shade. I have found that some gentle applying means that you can wear this more sheer, making it much more appropriate for February. I like matte finishes in lip products so I have no problems with this. It is one of the more moisturising balms that I have tried but if you do have really dry lips i'd definitely recommend exfoliating and moisturising before applying this.

I picked up Demure in the lacquer balm and this colour is stunning. It's a beautiful pinky, peachy, coral that can again be built up or worn quite sheer. The 'nib' is a classic your lips but better shade speckled with glitter. I love that this gives a glossy finish and the glitter particles make it look like you are wearing lipgloss on top. 

Revlon Colourburst Swatches in 105 Demure and 235 Mischievous

Both shades are highly pigmented but can be applied lightly for a more sheer lip. The matte balm leaves a velvety finish meaning it doesn't cling to any dry areas. The lacquer balm leaves a lovely glossy finish, which is neither sticky nor tacky making it perfect for every day wear. I'd say that these lasts for around 2-3 hours, which isn't brilliant; especially for a matte  balm but they are really easy to re-apply. 

Revlon Colourburst Balms in 105 Demure and 235 Mischievous

I'm really happy with both the colours I picked and I would look at getting some more. For £7.99 they are a bargain and a lovely addition to my lip collection, they also look gorgeous in my Muji storage :)!

Have you tried any of these yet?
xo



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Friday, 7 February 2014

Grace Cole Pineapple & Passion Fruit Lip Balm || Review

Grace Cole Pineapple & Passion Fruit Lipbalm

Grace Cole Pineapple & Passion Fruit Lipbalm

Grace Cole Pineapple & Passion Fruit Lipbalm

Anything fruit flavoured or scented is a winner in my eyes so this gorgeous Grace Cole lip balm is right up my street. Firstly let's mention the ridiculously gorgeous packaging. This reminds me of holidays, the sun shining , drinks flowing, laying on a sun lounger. I love the bright colour and how easy this is to find in your handbag. If you're anything like me, finding little tubs of lip balm is the hardest. 

This is Pineapple and Passionfruit flavoured and I have to admit it tastes and smells delicious. I can imagine this being perfect in summer, especially for applying after sipping a fruity cocktail. Wow, anyone else excited for summer all of a sudden? The first time I applied this I used it instead of my usual thick night time lip balm, well this isn't made for that! My lips need lots of hydration at night so I decided this would be my 'handbag balm'. It works best this way, hydrating the lips just enough without leaving a glossy, sticky residue. I can use this throughout the day and it definitely helps keep my lips moisturised and smells gorgeous in the process. 

For £2 this lipbalm is amazing, there are so many different flavours on the website. I have my eye on Passionfruit & Guava next and for the price I have a feeling it will be mine soon rather than later. I'm also tempted by other Grace Cole products, I've never tried any before but I may just have to add the Tea Tree & Witch Hazel cleansing tonic to my basket, oops.

xo


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Wednesday, 5 February 2014

January Beauty Favourites

January Beauty Favourites

*Insert generic favourites post opening here* So like every other beauty blogger in the world, I can't believe February is upon us again. Now that's out the way, let's get on to the good stuff...

REN Clearcalm 3 Clarifying Clear Cleanser

I had lusted after Ren products for far to long so when I had some Christmas money I knew exactly what I was going to buy. I bought the Clearcalm 3 Clarifying Clay Cleanser from Marks & Spencer at the very beginning of the month and I love it so much. At £18 it is expensive for a cleanser (in my eyes) but it really is worth it. My skin has been awful recently and this has really calmed down any red, angry spots. I apply this like a face mask, brush my teeth and then rinse it off, it leaves my skin feeling smooth, hydrated and most of all cleansed. I will most definitely be repurchasing this when it has run out ("please don't be soon" said my bank account)

Hydraluron
Hydraluron - £24.99 *Currently on offer for £16*

Another skincare favourite! This one i've had for around four months and i'm not quite sure how I lived without it. I'd heard so much about Indeed Labs products but again, I couldn't justify the crazy price tag. I'd been recommended Hydraluron for so long to combat my dreadfully dry skin, so when I saw this had a third off in Boots I made the plunge and bought it. This is basically a clear serum that 'injects' hydration into your skin. A couple of weeks after I bought this my dry patch on my forehead had completely disappeared. Like the Ren Cleanser, I wouldn't hesitate repurchasing this when it runs out.

ELF Eyebrow Kit

I'm all about the brows, I can't leave the house without doing them and this is my current go to product. I've compared it to some more expensive products here but this is honestly the best in my opinion. This was one of the first ELF products I tried and I seriously love this. The wax shade is perfect for outlining and filling them in and the powder shade I use to fill in any sparse areas. It lasts all day, doesn't coat the brows and most importantly doesn't slip and slide. The colour match is perfect for me and i'll continue to use this and repurchase it.

Ted Baker Bronzer and Highlighter

I've never tried any Ted Baker makeup before but I received the Ted Baker Best of Beauty set for Christmas and this was part of it. This is a kind of bronzer highlighter hybrid that looks gorgeous on the cheeks. It looks quite orange in the pan but it doesn't come out like that at all. I also really love the packaging, who doesn't love rose gold? The product has gold shimmer running through it but again, it doesn't come out on the skin. I'm not sure if you can buy them separately but i'm definitely going to having a look.

Maybelline Super Stay Better Skin Foundation

My new daily essential! I've expressed my love for this in my review so I won't get carried away but I honestly love this foundation. I don't think i've ever tried any other Maybelline foundations before but I don't think I need to now. This gives amazing coverage and a flawless finish, especially when applied with the fingers. I'd say this is a drugstore alternative to Macs Studio Fix Fluid. 

Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette

What would a January favourites post be without a Christmas present thrown in. I literally have used the Naked 3 palette everyday since Christmas, it's amazing. I've never used any other Urban Decay products before but i'm definitely tempted to now. The colours are perfect, I go from loving the left hand side to loving the right on a daily basis. I have also reviewed this so I wont go into too much detail, basically buy it, NOW!

What have you been loving this month?
xo

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