Not too much to report, Recent Purchases-wise yet again! Last month I spent a BOMB on partying, food, mooching about and generally having a gay old time, so I've been trying to be frugal since I got paid but it's SO difficult!
Anyhoo, let's crack on.
Skeleton crop top with cut out shoulders - Topshop
This wee tee was only £14! Bargain! I'm loving this shoulderless trend and I actually got another gorge floral shoulderless dress from Toppers a while ago but forgot to include it and now it's gone from the website. BUMS. Anyway, this wee number was a steal and is super-cute on. It actually wasn't that cropped so I cut off the hem (!) to make sure it sits right on the waistband of my faux-leather H&M skater which is how I plan to style it up this weekend. It's pretty high-necked so perhaps not one for you lovely CHESTY WUMMIN, but with my hair up and a bold lip I think I can just about pull it off. Love.
Something Wicked cropped tee - Tee and Cake at Topshop
I am a sucker for a Shakespeare quote and Macbeth is my favourite so when I saw this I grabbed it to trying on, not really sure how I was going to make it work. Turns out it's a TRUE CROP which means midriff, something which really isn't cool for me (or anyone else rapidly encroaching their mid-twenties) but again, it'll work with very high-waisted shorts or that faux-leather skater I mentioned. If all else fails it'll be a super cosy jammy top - the cotton is really thick and soft...
Oatmeal open-shoulder top - Topshop
Can you spot a theme here? Yeah, I pretty much raided Topshop last night. Another shoulderless wonder, this uber-light knit is cut to fall really flatteringly and is an awesome basic to throw on with loads of other stuff in my wardrobe, plus the no-shoulder detail adds a bit of edge. Beware, it's pretty sheer though...
Crochet and chiffon cardigan - TRF at Zara
I'm going on holiday next week - WOOP! - and I was in desperate need of a wee cardi like this to chuck on over strapless beachy dresses or for if it turns chilly in the evening. This off-white crochet number is perfect and it's stunning on - looks like it's worth at least double it's crazy £25.99 price tag!
Dr Weil for Origins Mega-Bright serum
I recently attended a beauty lock-in event at House of Frasers in Glasgow (more on that to come soon) and after a glass of cava (or three), I found myself stumbling over to the Origins counter lustfully eyeing up this baby. It's been on my periphery for a while - y'all know how much of a freak I am for skin brightening goodies - but I could never really justify the £46. The shrewd but lovely sales girl noticed my hesitation and went on to tell me loads about it, most of which I've now forgotten to be honest. But her schpiel worked and I've been using it semi-religiously every morning for around two weeks. I can't say I've noticed a huge change overall, but certainly after you put it on you can see a difference. I think it's mostly to do with the slight iridescence to the serum itself than anything else, but I have my fingers crossed for more long term visible results in skintone. One thing to note, it's quite silliconey which means it can feel weird putting any kind of emollient moisturiser over the top. I've also noticed if you use too much and vigorously rub it in it can ball up and flake off, which is NOT COOL so less is more peeps.
Origins Brighter by Nature high potency brightening peel
Yup, I was suckered into this too. I explained my night-time skincare routine to the sales assistant and she told me I was lacking a glycolic treatment and a mask, both to use a few times a week. I couldn't really argue to be honest, I mean I HAD tried the Alpha H Liquid Gold (which I still have by the way, should really throw it out...) but unfortunately every time I used it I woke up with horrible little spots that took ages to go away. I think it's just too harsh for my skin, and I've never noticed the miraculous effects others seem to rave about... Anyways, I decided on this even though I suspected it might be a similar type of product (akin to a 30% glycolic peel apparently!) and I was right :( I've used it twice and both times it stung and left me with those painful wee red spots. BUT, after a day or so once my skin has calmed down, it has been feeling a bit smoother. Not brighter as such, just less red and clearer overall, but it's hard to know whether that's solely down to this or my new moisturiser (coming up). I THINK it's working but I'm still undecided whether it's worth the unsightly side-effects...
Origins Out of Trouble 10 Minute Mask
Although my skin seems to be changing to more normal/combo instead of combo/oily, I do still get the odd breakout now and then. Thanks to some crazy partying recently (Kirsten's 25 going-away parties amongst other things) I've accidentally fallen asleep with my makeup on a few times with some NASTY results. I opted for this as my final Origins splurge to hopefully sort things out once and for all and I'm pleased to say it definitely worked. It does exactly what it says on the tin - soaks up any excess oil, deep cleans and dries out potential spots before they come to the surface. Putting it on is like smearing toothpaste all over your face though, which is well weird! The consistency is super-thick and it smells strongly of camphor which I don't love. But I do like the effects - definitely a winner.
Lancome Hydra Zen neurocalm soothing moisturising cream
This is a bit of a cheat cos I didn't ACTUALLY buy this, it was in my goodybag from the Frasers event a few weeks ago. But I'm including it cos I think it's worth mentioning since I've been using it pretty much non-stop ever since. So after I'd used those brightening peel pads my skin was really tight and red - not something I'm used to since using the Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish virtually every night for 4 months. I noticed I'd been given a sample pot of this from the new Lancome Hydra Zen range designed for sensitive skin and tried it out after my Advanced Night Repair as usual. HOLY COW. I've never woken up to such soft skin before! Seriously, when I wake up all I want to do is stroke my face for ages... The heavy glass pot feels luxurious, it smells delicious and is absorbed quickly. This white pot is an oil-in-water version and they do an oil-free one, but I don't think it has SPF which is disappointing otherwise I'd be snapping it up to use in the daytime too. If you have sensitive skin I'd highly recommend this,
Lancome Hypnose Doll Eyes mascara
I first tried this in November last year and I LOVED it but stupidly decided that at £22 it was too expensive to repurchase. I got myself another Maybelline One-by-One mascara to take its place but I've had to admit that it just PALES IN COMPARRISON. Whereas the Maybelline one dries out in a matter of weeks, has a stabby, synthetic brush and goes clumpy and flaky after 2 coats, this does none of these things. The tapered wand makes it perfect for getting every single tiny lash, top and bottom, and the formula stays 'wet' for ages, both in the tube and on your eyes which reduces any dry flakyness. It's not the most smude-proof mascara out there but then it isn't waterproof so I guess I can't judge it too harshly for that. Simply put, I love it. Plus, weirdly, it smells really nice too, though beware when trying to sniff it. Black smudges all over your nose isn't a hot look, TRUST ME!
Crest 3D White Professional Effects Whitestrips (bought from eBay)
So I've never had a huge problem with the colour of my teeth before, they've never been YELLOW or particularly stained (unless you count a night on the red wine...) but who WOULDN'T want their teeth that little bit whiter eh? My mum recently got her teeth whitened at the Girl's Day Out Show in Glasgow a while back, and the results were not bad. You could see a slight difference but nothing spectacular, and she paid £60 for the priviledge. I'd been thinking about doing the same, but I remembered seeing reviews of these on
YouTube and they were all overwhelmingly positive so I decided to go for it. I'm glad I did! A pack of 20 upper and lower strips cost me just over £20 and I've only been using them for a week and I can definitely see a difference. They're pretty fiddly, take half an hour to develop and can sting/make your teeth slightly sensitive afterwards, but in terms of results, they speak for themselves...
OK, so I AM wearing a blue-red lippy and I took this on Instagram with a filter, but seriously, they are definitely, DEFINITELY whiter. They're not quite Ross from Friends yet, and I'll stop using them if they start to go that way, but for the moment I'm very happy with the results. Be careful using them cos they're not approved for sale here and if you're worried about sensitivity or whatever, maybe steer clear. But the bottom line is they work.
So, aye. That's what I've been buying/using recently. As I mentioned I'm going on holiday next week and still have a few beachy, summery things to get before I go so if I have enough time I'll show you guys what I get. If not look out for holiday pics in a couple of weeks! I'll also be posting the link to a guest blog I've written all about BB creams (once I actually write it!), so look out for that too. Along with some more info on the Frasers beauty event... Jings, my to do list is out of control at the mo!
ALSO, incase anyone is wondering what I actually DO to fund all these purchases, a colleague of mine wrote about A Day in the Life of a Subtitler for my company's blog. Check it oot if you're