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DHC Liquid Eyeliner

If you follow my Instagram then you may have seen (who knows for sure with Instagram!) that I received a very generous PR package that contained a load of DHC products. I don't know an awful lot about DHC as a brand but the two products I've always wanted to try are their cleansing oil and their liquid liner, so I was delighted to find both in my parcel. 

DHC Liquid Eyeliner
DHC Liquid Eyeliner

Since mastering the art of liquid liner my liner of choice has been in the form of a felt tip style liner with a thin pointed nib and hopefully (as I can't judge this from just looking at the product) a good flow. I'd heard good things about the DHC Liquid Eyeliner and it looked like my perfect product. 

The first time I used the product (and actually the second time as well) I loved it. It does flow well, has a thin accurate nib and is easy to use. However, I have personally hit a problem with the product that is down to me rather than the product itself. The first time I used it I had no problem at all with it until I woke up the following morning with a swollen eye lid, like a had a particularly nasty sty. At first I didn't link this to the product at all and after a few days it went down. 

DHC Liquid Eyeliner
DHC Liquid Eyeliner

I used the eyeliner again the following week and again I woke up the following morning with a swollen eye, this time the lower lid (is that part actually called a lid?). This time it was worse and it took several days for it to go down. In fact a little whitehead developed right on the edge of my eye lid, inside my lashes and against my eye ball. I know I really shouldn't have done, but I was disturbed by it, so I gave it a little squeeze and it went and my eye went down again. 

I would really like to try the liner again in case it was just a coincidence that the two issues with my eyes occurred when I had used the liner, but I don't think I should because this is my eyes, one of which is already damaged, so I don't want to risk it. I assume there is something in the product that I'm allergic to, so despite how much I enjoyed using it, I don't think I should use it again.

Have you tried the DHC Liquid Eyeliner? 

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New in from Collection

I have several issues with the skin on my face, but the one I'm going to talk about in this post is redness. I've suffered with redness for years now and although it does sometimes look a lot better than others it has never disappeared completely. I mostly suffer across my cheeks, where I believe it is most common to suffer from redness, and depending on the state of my chin at the time I may have some redness there from a breakout or residual scarring. I did go to the doctors about it many years ago but was just told there was nothing they could do to help. Rosacea wasn't mentioned at all so I have no idea if that is what is the cause of my redness or not.

I used to use a green concealer/corrector but for some reason haven't used one for years now and have instead just relied on standard concealer. When I spotted that Collection were releasing some colour correctors within the Lasting Perfection collection I decided to give the Collection Lasting Perfection Colour Correction Concealer in green a try.

Collection Lasting Perfection Colour Correcting Concealer and Primed and Ready Make-up Fixing Spray

To be honest I was really surprised to actually find one in my local Superdrug that hadn't been opened/tested, but it was the only one there. While checking out the stand I discovered Collection had also just released a make-up fixing spray. I was planning to replace my L'Oreal Infallible one, which is pretty much empty, but they've increased the price by £1 recently. As the Collection Primed & Ready Make-up Fixing Spray is cheaper and was also on introductory offer I decided to give that a try instead. 

As the Colour Correcting Concealer is within the Lasting Perfection line it has exactly the same packaging as the existing concealer. It has a clear tube so you can see at a glance in your make-up bag that it's a green concealer and it has a doe foot applicator for applying the product. Recently I have used a green primer, but despite the product being green you couldn't tell it was green once applied. With this you can really tell it's green! You only need a small amount and I'd definitely recommend using this under your foundation because the slightly green tinge you're left with after blending doesn't quite disappear completely. This does completely knock out any redness through leaving an evened out (slightly green tinged) skin tone. 

Collection Lasting Perfection Colour Correcting Concealer and Primed and Ready Make-up Fixing Spray

The Collection Primed & Ready Make-up Fixing Spray comes in a simple black plastic 100ml bottle with silver/white writing. You can't see how much is left in the bottle but it's quite easy to tell how much is left by the weight and giving it a shake. The first time I sprayed this I was really impressed with the spray itself. Although the L'Oreal Infallible one had a pretty good spray on it this one sprays in a perfect even mist that doesn't leave your face feeling a little on the wet side. In fact I can't always quite feel it and probably end up using a little too much thinking I've missed. I haven't found this to leave me with any kind of powdery residue and it does what it's supposed to do; it helps my make-up stay in place longer and look better. 

You can find the Primed & Ready Make-up Fixing Spray (£5.99) at both Boots and Superdrug but I believe the Collection Lasting Perfection Colour Correcting Concealers (£4.19) might be exclusive to Superdrug.

Have you given either product a try?

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Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Class Act Growth Boosting & Thickening mascara

Last week I reviewed the Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Divine Lips lipsticks and this week I'm moving on to the mascara from the same range. So far the lipsticks from the Timeless Beauty range have been a big hit with me (overlooking a few shades that don't suit me) and the powder from the Duo Compact not so much. Unfortunately the Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Class Act Boosting & Thickening mascara* also falls into the not really for me category.

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Class Act Growth Boosting & Thickening mascara
Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Class Act Growth Boosting & Thickening mascara

As well as being a mascara this claims to be a treatment promising longer, thicker and fuller lashes in 30 days. The claim is that lashes will be 169% longer and 13% thicker when applied every day adding an extra 1mm growth in a month. To be honest I'm a little confused by these figures and am wondering if they are actually the wrong way round. 169% longer would mean lashes become over double the length they currently are, which seems unrealistic, especially when growth is supposed to be 1mm in a month. 13% appears much more realistic when it comes to additional length. Similarly, a 13% increase in thickness when it comes to something as thin as an eyes lashes is nothing, but a 169% increase would mean lashes more than double in thickness, which is much more realistic.

In terms of packaging this is exactly the same as the packaging on the lipsticks but just longer. It's the sort of packaging I would consider holding onto after the product is finished with as it's perfect as a blog picture prop for those rose gold lovers. The lid unscrews to reveal a reasonably chunky natural bristle brush that is a little thicker at one end and tapers slightly towards the lid of the product.

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Class Act Growth Boosting & Thickening mascara
Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Class Act Growth Boosting & Thickening mascara

It does have a nice formula, maybe a little too wet for some people, but it can get a bit clumpy if you're not careful with your application. This is one where I don't even attempt to try and get to the lashes in the inner corner of my eye because every single time I attempt it I get mascara on my eye lid that I then have to attempt to clean up. I also don't really attempt to try and get down to the bottom of my lashes, which I really should do if possible as my lashes are blonde, as the brush feels too chunky and I do end up with it on my eye lid. Once applied this does provide some good volume and a little length.

It's not a difficult one to remove (my method of choice is an oil cleanser) but I do find that it smudges through the day and it's not one you can nap in unless you're a back napper and your eyes don't go near the pillow.

Unfortunately I can't comment on whether this made a visible difference in the length and thickness of my lashes because I just didn't enjoy using it enough to keep up with it for 30 days. I drifted back to other open mascaras I had that I enjoyed using more.

Not that I can remember the last time I actually bought a mascara myself but I'm not one for spending more than £10 on a product like this. The only exception if I had the spare cash would be Benefit's BADgal or They're Real. At £20 this isn't one I would consider purchasing myself.

Some similar posts
Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Divine Lips lipsticks
Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Compact Duo
My top Bourjois products

*PR sample  

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Orly Breathable Treatment + Color nail varnishes

Breathable nail varnishes are certainly not a new thing, I believe they may have been around since 2012/13, if not before that, but they don't appear to have become particularly popular. The constant wearing of nail varnish is not particularly good for your nails and ideally nails should be left bare regularly to allow them to recover. Nail varnish usually forms a barrier over the nail that prevents air getting to it and causes nails to become dry. There are plenty of strengthening treatments around, but ideally you should reapply daily to really see the benefits and so this means you can't really wear a colour over the top. 

There are also religious implications for breathable nail varnish. Before Muslim prayer women are required to wash their hands and arms and traditional nail varnish prevents water from making contact with the nail, meaning the nails are unwashed. A breathable nail varnish means water can reach the nail and therefore is suitable to be worn during prayer. 

Although I don't wear nail varnish all the time (it doesn't last long enough on me so I'd be painting every few days) my nails aren't in amazing condition. They tend to be quite dry and split/flaky and I suffer with 'fault lines' down a few of them. But I only really tend to remember to regularly apply strengthener when they get really bad. So when I received an email about the Orly Breathable Treatment + Color* nail varnishes I thought I'd give them a try. 

Orly Breathable Treatment + Color nail varnishes
Orly Breathable Treatment + Color nail varnishes

The Orly Breathable Treatment + Color nail varnishes contain vitamin C, pro-vitamin B5 and argan oil and are inspired by the technology of contact lens, allowing air to pass through the colour and penetrate the nail promoting growth, increasing thickness and helping damaged nails to heal by keeping them hydrated. The formula also apparently includes adhesion promoters and shine additives meaning you don't need a base coat or topcoat. This is pretty handy because using a base coat or topcoat or both would obviously ruin the whole breathable bit. Not having to use a base coat and topcoat also means you can paint your nails in half the time it would usually take.

I think the only experience I've had of Orly in the past has been their mini bottles, so I was surprised by the size of these ones when I pulled them out of the envelope. The bottles are large and contain 18ml each, which I think is quite a lot when it comes to nail varnish. The nail varnish is a pretty good consistency, not too thick or too thin, and they come with a wide flat brush that can cover some of my nails in one swipe. I would say two coats is enough for the purple shade and three best for the red shimmer as with other shimmer shades this is thinner than just a colour on its own. 

Orly Breathable Treatment + Color nail varnishes

Please excuse that I put my finger in one of my swatches!

One of the things I was most concerned about was staining on the nails because of not using a base coat between the nail and the colour. With other nail varnishes I've suffered from staining despite using a base coat, but I was surprised to find that I didn't suffer with any staining at all, all colour removed easily. The shimmer was a little harder to remove as is standard, but all colour came away from the nail. I also thought the finish wouldn't be particularly glossy, and if I'm not going for a matte nail and I want all the shine, but again I was surprised by how glossy the finish was, better than some top coats. Finally I thought as there was no base coat or top coat involved that this would be chipping off my nails almost instantly, as no nail varnish lasts particularly long on me. However, again I was surprised to find that this actually lasted longer on my nails than most nail varnishes used with a base and top coat. 

Overall I've been really impressed by these nail varnishes. The downside is that they are £12 each, but my favourites do tend to be around £11-£15 and if I found a shade that I liked enough or was unusual enough I would definitely consider purchasing it. You can find the Orly Breathable Treatment + Color range at Graftons Beauty

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Birchbox x Boden April 2017 - The Bold and the Beautiful

I've just realised that there are only three days of April left and I haven't yet managed to get my post up on the April Birchbox! This arrived just before I had to go away over the Easter weekend to visit my in-laws and then I couldn't manage to get any pictures taken before I was then on set for a couple of days and time has just run away from me.

For the April box Birchbox have partnered with British fashion brand Boden. Although I have heard of Boden before I've never actually taken a look at any of their products before so I'm not familiar with the kind of thing they have on offer.

This month's box is another drawer that features a very spring-like print that I believe is a print currently available on some of Boden products. The theme for this month is being bold and beautiful, whether this involves wearing a bold print or how you choose to use the products in your box, and the mantra for this month is Be bold. Take risks. Be a trailblazer.

Birchbox x Boden April 2017 - The Bold and the Beautiful
Birchbox x Boden April 2017 - The Bold and the Beautiful
Birchbox x Boden April 2017 - The Bold and the Beautiful

This month there are two full size make-up products that I believe are in every box. The first is a Manna Kadar Cosmetics High Definition powder, which is a Birchbox exclusive. I have never come across this brand before and was surprised to see in the booklet that this is worth £27, especially considering the product is really quite small and I can't see anywhere how much is in it. This is a HD powder with a velvet finish and I'm looking forward to trying it because I don't think I've tried a HD powder before. 

The next one is from a brand I have come across before, although their make-up range is new to me. Nip + Fab have been doing skincare for a while but their make-up is hot off the press and I received a Colour Corrector in Banana. The booklet says the yellow shade acts like a subtle highlight by illuminating the skin. I would have personally preferred the green shade for covering redness or the orange shade for brightening dark circles, although the orange shade does look rather dark. I haven't tried this out yet, but I'm not a huge highlighting fan, and am not sure exactly how you do this with a colour corrector, so I'm not sure how much use I will get out of this.

Birchbox x Boden April 2017 - The Bold and the Beautiful

The next brand I am aware of but only because I have previously received a product from the same brand in a previous Birchbox. The previous product was a heat protection spray that I have actually just finished. This time I've received the amika The Shield Style Extending Spray. I assume this is a hair spray as it says it protects, maintains and extends, but it doesn't appear to specify. It also says on the back (in really tiny writing) that it defends against frizz-inducing humidity and dulling, dirtying pollution. It is says in the booklet though that this is a heat-activated product and to spray it onto damp or dry hair before heat styling, so I'm not sure what it is. 

The next two products are both from brands that are new to me. The first appears to be a French brand and is Baïja Paris Crème Moana, which is a body lotion, and I believe the fragrance is Fleur de Tiarè. This came sealed but I could actually smell the cream through the seal so it's pretty highly fragranced. It feels quite a rich cream and does say in the booklet a little goes a long way, so this sample might last reasonably well. There's shea butter and coconut oil in there and it absorbs nicely leaving soft residue free skin, but as I said it is highly fragranced so that might be a deal breaker for some people. 

Finally there's the Polaar IcePure Gentle Scrub with Arctic Cotton. I'm not really a manual scrub fan but apparently Arctic Cotton is a powerhouse ingredient with moisturising properties that leave skin both smooth and soft. So if it is an amazing ingredient I look forward to seeing what it can do. I believe this might also be a French brand; these beauty boxes do like their French products don't they!

If you do buy the April box you will also receive a £10 gift voucher for Boden that is valid until 31st May 2017. You can sign up to Birchbox here.

What do you think of the contents of this months box?

Some similar posts
Birchbox x Papier February 2017 - Express Yourself
Birchbox January 2017 - Sprinkle Happiness
Birchbox December 2017 - Merry & Bright

*PR sample   



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Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Divine Lips lipsticks

At the end of last year/beginning of this year I tried the stunning looking Timeless Beauty Compact Duo, which contains a compact powder and a Divine Lips lipstick. Unfortunately though, for me, the products didn't quite live up to the glamorous looking Art Deco style packaging. The lipstick in the duo did look very promising but the shade I received wasn't for me at all and I didn't even feel comfortable wearing it around the house let alone out in public. 

So when I received an email regarding just the lipsticks and saw there were some gorgeous looking shades available I wanted to give them a try. I was sent Evelyn* and Suzy Starr* to try. 

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Divine Lips lipsticks
Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Divine Lips lipsticks

The lipsticks come in exactly the same packaging as the lipstick included within the Compact Duo. The packaging is gorgeous and more than a little similar to the packaging you'll find on Charlotte Tilbury's lipsticks. In fact these are easily mistaken for CT on Instagram. I'm not a huge fan of brands producing packaging that is very similar to that of another brand, but it is beautiful to look at and the band with 'Joan Collins' around the middle does mean the packaging is not pretty much identical.

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Divine Lips lipsticks
Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Divine Lips lipsticks

The two shades I received are both very pretty spring/summer appropriate shades. Evelyn is a gorgeous pinky red shade that is just my kind of shade and when I first opened this it reminded me strongly of MACs Impassioned. I was slightly disappointed when I opened Suzy Starr because this is a peachy coral shade, which although very pretty, is not really a shade that tends to suit me. Evelyn is definitely my favourite shade as it really suits me but Suzy Starr is a little too orange based to sit well on me. 

Both shades are described as cream and apply as such. Both are soft and creamy and easy to apply and can be applied in one swipe. They're both really comfortable to wear and I tend to forget that I'm wearing them as they're far from drying. They don't have a matte finish but also don't have a glossy finish either, they're a nice medium ground between the two.

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Divine Lips lipsticks

I was pleasantly surprised by how long these can last considering they aren't mattes. They can survive some eating and drinking and can stay pretty much intact for I would say around four or five hours. They would definitely need topping up after this time, which is very easy to do, but come the end of the day when I'm removing my make-up there are still traces of the shade left on my lips, which in the case of Evelyn does require some removal. 

Although Suzy Starr isn't for me these are both beautiful lipsticks and although £18 is a little expensive (what price is MAC up to now? Last time I looked it was £15,50?) I think they are worth the money. You can find Timeless Beauty on the dedicated website and also in M&S. 

Have you tried a lipstick from Timeless Beauty?

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*PR sample

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The best beauty tips/tricks I've discovered since blogging


Applying dry shampoo to your hair before bed This is the only way I really use dry shampoo. Sleeping on it overnight means there won't be any powdery residue left by morning and also does the whole massaging it around to get volume for you. Even if you have a really bad night (more tossing and turning) the better your hair will be in the morning!

Invisible lip liner I had no idea these even existed prior to blogging but an invisible liner works with any lip colour so you only need the one. Just apply it just outside your lip line.

Brush cleaning tools (or something like a silicone exfoliating glove) to clean your make-up brushes with. Having something with nobbly bits on to get right in those bristles makes it so much quicker and easier.

Applying concealer under your eyes in a 'V' I will admit before discovering this one I had looked in the mirror a few times and spotted the dreaded 'highlighted circles' around my eyes.

Washing sponges in the washing machine Grab one of those little bags you're supposed to use to wash bras, pop your beautyblender in and throw it in with your washing. Trying to wash one by hand always feels a little awkward for me, especially when I use one of those knobbly glove things and don't want to rub the blender on it. Putting it in the washing machine gives it a thorough wash.

...and the worst

Putting a dried up mascara in a glass of hot water No, don't! If your mascara has become unusable it's past it's best and needs chucking. You are using this product right next to your eyes. 

Using tape to get a straight line when applying eye liner Yes it might help you get a razor sharp line but it can't be good for the thin and delicate skin around your eyes when you peel it off!

This is one I've only come across very recently and actually have only heard about it rather than actually seeing it myself. Putting your beauty sponge in a condom. No! Just, why? What does this add and what about the lubricant....

I'm sure there are loads I've forgotten so what are yours?

Some similar posts
Real Techniques Miracle mini eraser sponges
How to master applying liquid liner
Ways to support other bloggers (that also benefit you) 

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SkinChemists discount code

During April SkinChemists are having a collagen themed month and to celebrate they've given me a nice little discount code for you to take advantage of if you wish. I'm currently testing out the Advanced Pro-5 Collagen Oxygenating night cream, but I won't be giving you my thoughts just yet as I've only been using this for a week so far. However if you do fancy trying this out for yourself you can use code LITTLEBLOG to pick this up for just £19.99 until the end of April. As the RRP is £109 that is quite a hefty saving!

SkinChemists Advanced Pro-5 Collagen Oxygenating night cream

I decided to post about the discount code before putting up my review because by the time I'm ready to review the product it's likely the discount code will have expired and I want you to be able to use the code if you want to. You can find the Advanced Pro-5 Collagen Oxygenating night cream here.

So I'll be back in a few weeks time with my thoughts on the Advanced Pro-5 Collagen Oxygenating night cream and please do let me know if you decide to try it for yourself too.


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The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing butter

If you read my recent ready for recycling post then you'll know that I recently finished the Pixi Nourishing Cleansing balm. If you read right through to the end then you'll also know that as much as I'd like to purchase the Pixi balm (the one in that post was a sample) £18 is a little expensive for me to spend on just one product at the moment.

As a big fan of The Body Shop and an even bigger fan of the huge discounts they regularly offer I thought I'd instead give the Camomile Sumptuous cleansing butter a try. I've already tried the oil equivalent and really like that one, so I thought chances are I'll like the balm. The balm is usually £10, not a bad price in itself, but I had a 40% discount code and so managed to grab it for £6.50. 

The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing butter

I'm a little bit confused by this one because checking the ingredients I can't actually find camomile in there! I've tried Googling for the scientific name for camomile and I still can't find anything that looks right. I'm also confused because Google and my spell checker are both telling me that it's actually spelt Chamomile, so I have no idea what is going on here! I know The Body Shop can be a little bit naughty naming product after an ingredient that features very low in the list of ingredients (meaning the amounts are almost negligible), but I'd hope there is some in there.  

If this does actually have any camomile in at all then this is great for sensitive skin because camomile is very calming and unlikely to irritate in any way. It also contains olive fruit oil, shea butter and sunflower seed oil, although the latter is pretty low down in the ingredients. This one does contain a few fragrance ingredients (which a product for sensitive skin probably shouldn't really contain) but fragrance isn't usually a problem for me, as far as I'm aware.

The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing butter

When I picked this up in store and spotted it said butter rather balm I did think that this might be more solid than I was used to, but of course butter in the dairy sense is only hard if it's kept cold, so this is actually much softer than I'm used to. I'll touch on this again below.

As with any product of this type you scoop out a small amount (I wish products like this would come with little scoops, or you could at least buy them, as it's a little more hygienic) rub it between your fingers for a few seconds to start breaking it down and apply to dry skin. You can use this to remove make-up and I think this is how most people will probably use a cleansing balm/butter. But as I mentioned in my empties post I struggle to remove cleansing balms from around my eyes, so I much prefer to use products like this as a second cleanse to really give my skin a good massage, 

As I mentioned above this is softer then the balms I've used previously and at first I thought I might prefer that, but actually I don't. The Pixi Nourishing Cleansing balm was a lot thicker and I guess 'tougher' than this so it encouraged me to really massage it into the skin because, well, I had to. This one starts to soften really quickly between my fingers when I'm getting ready to apply it and by the time it has got to my face it's pretty much almost an oil. This means it glides over my skin really easily and so there's not as much massaging going on because it's not required to move the product around. I still enjoy using this, but my face doesn't quite get the massage it does with the Pixi balm. This is also so light and oil-like that it doesn't feel like I need a flannel or cloth to remove it, just a few splashes of water. I usually do use a flannel though just to make sure I am removing it all and for a quick, light bit of exfoliation at the end of the process.

The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing butter

This and the Pixi balm both contain 90ml of product, so they're comparable in terms of the amount of product you get, although they really don't look it. The Pixi pot is almost twice the height of The Body Shop, but I believe the product 'floats' slightly inside the Pixi pot whereas The Body Shop one sits right on the bottom of the tin. So which is my favourite? The Pixi one is definitely my favourite because I like how much firmer it is than The Body Shop's butter. But price wise at the moment The Body Shop wins because it's almost half the price of the Pixi one and with an offer I can get it for pushing closer to a third of the price. 

I didn't really mean for this to end up as a bit of a comparison post, but I might as well set it against what I would consider my current 'holy grail' of cleansing balms. This is definitely a very nice product, it just had quite a lot to live up to for me!

The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing butter is £10 and is available online and in The Body Shop stores. 


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