Wednesday, 31 October 2012

October Empties

It's empties time again! I used up mainly body/bath essentials this month, no makeup at all!

Soap and Glory Wash Your Hands Of It Hand Wash 250ml - £5.00
This pretty pink hand wash is from a set that also contains a 250ml Hand Food (that hasn't run out yet). I received the set for my birthday and thought it was nice to put in the kitchen to use. It's described as a "fruity fresh non-drying hand wash" and it definitely is that! It also has that lovely but not too overpowering standard Soap and Glory scent.
Purchase myself? No - only because I've bought a red coloured Bayliss and Harding hand wash to match the red theme of our kitchen!!

No7 Beautiful Skin Wipes (30 Wipes) - £7.00
I bought these with a £5.00 voucher and am gutted that they've run out while there's no voucher offer on. They're suitable for all skin types and are the best facial wipes I've ever used to remove makeup, especially to remove my Benefit They're Real mascara, which is normally so stubborn and a pain to remove! I just wish they weren't so expensive.
Re-purchase? Yes - when No7 do another voucher!

Lush Snow Fairy Shower Gel Sample - FREE
I love Lush for samples! I got two uses out of this pot. I mentioned Snow Fairy in my recent post I'm Lusting Over... Shower Gels because it smells absolutely gorgeous (though if you don't like sweet scents it won't be for you). It lathers really well and the scent lingers on your skin for ages afterwards.
Purchase full size? It's on my Christmas wishlist.

So...? Kiss Me Body Fragrance 75ml - £1.99
I flit between So...? and Impulse depending what's on offer as I hate spending lots on deodrant. This has a nice fruity scent, which I really like.
Re-purchase? Yes

Tesco Cotton Wool Round Pads x100 - £1.00
I think these are pretty good value for money and are easy to pick up when doing the food shop.
Re-purchase? Yes

Girlz Only Dawn til Dusk Dry Shampoo 150ml - £1.50
I think this dry shampoo is just as good as Batiste and I've been buying it for a few months now. This one has a refreshing citrus scent. You can read my full review of it here.
Re-purchase? Yes definitely.

Sure Women Crystal Clear Aqua 48h Active Anti-Perspirant 250ml - £3.00
I bought this from Tesco on a half price offer and although I prefer anti-perspirants with some kind of scent rather than that standard powdery smell, I really like this as it works so well. I think I may stock up while it's still half price!
Re-purchase? Yes.

So that's it for my empties, the products aren't that exciting this month but hope you enjoyed the post!

What have you used up this month? Do you use any of the above products?

Beauty Bird xx


Sunday, 28 October 2012

Review: Burt's Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Creme

A cuticle product has been on my wishlist for ages - but I just couldn't decide between Burt's Bees and Lush Lemony Flutter. Then the (actually quite difficult) decision was made for me when a work colleague kindly gave me the Burt's Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Creme out of their Tips and Toes Kit! How excited was I!!

This 15g tin retails at £5.99. For this you get what is more of a balm than a "creme" and it smells absolutely gorgeous - I think of lemon drizzle cake every time I use it! This product is full of natural ingredients, such as lemon oil, sweet almond oil, beeswax and cocoa seed butter to name a few. 

The blurb:

"Give your needy nails a helping hand. Nourish and moisturise nails and cuticles with this intensive, natural treatment. A touch of lemon oil makes your nails smell incredibly clean, healthy and beautiful, naturally."

My nails and the skin around my nails get really dry, it's a pain because if I get nervous or stressed I end up picking at the dry skin making them really sore. I do use hand cream but it doesn't seem to be enough for my cuticles or the skin around my nails. This cuticle creme has been fantastic at helping to keep the dryness at bay and is giving my nails a real moisturisation boost after using hand cream. I've also starting using it on my toes as they just look really dry and unhealthy after being covered in nail varnish all summer. The texture of the creme is light and not at all greasy, melting into your fingers really quickly. I've been keeping it on my bedside table to use before bed, but the tin is also the perfect size to pop in your handbag to use on the go.

The Verdict
I'm completely sold on the concept of a cuticle creme now and am in love with this one! I fully intend to purchase Burt's Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Creme myself when it runs out, which will not be anytime soon - I've been using this every day for about three weeks and barely made a dent in it!

To view this product on the Burt's Bees website, please click here.

Do you use any cuticle products? Which is your favourite?

Beauty Bird xx


Thursday, 25 October 2012

I'm Lusting Over... Shower Gels

Shower gels aren't the most obvious thing to lust over I know, but when they look, smell and sound this good then you'll understand why! Plus you can never have too many shower gels... right?

Lush Snow Fairy Shower Gel 250g - £6.25
I've seen a lot of bloggers raving about this limited edition shower gel on Twitter and from the smell alone I now know why! It's only sold at this time of year and it is possibly one of the nicest smells ever - a mixture of candy floss and pear drops! I bought one at the weekend for my sister's birthday in November and the sales assistant was kind enough to give me a sample of it to try. Must. Have. More.

The Body Shop Vineyard Peach Shower Gel 250ml - £4.00
I just love peach - the colour, the smell, even the fruit itself! I wondered into The Body Shop just to smell this and it's lovely! This is also great value for money at only £4.00. The body scrub looks pretty scrummy too!

Soap and Glory Whipped Clean Shower Butter 250ml - £8.00
Not really a gel this one, but don't you just love the names of Soap and Glory products? I was instantly drawn to this just because of the name when I was browsing on the S&G website. This is a body wash and butter in one containing 25% moisture oils and butters such as sweet almond oil and shea butter. It's fragranced with almond, pistachio and sweet vanilla - sounds good enough to eat!

Unfortunately I don't have a lot of spare money for myself in the run up to Christmas, so these three will all be going on my Christmas wishlist!

Have you tried any of the shower gels above? What are you lusting after at the moment?

Beauty Bird xx


Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Review: VO5 Give Me Texture Instant Oomph Powder

I picked up this little bottle of VO5 Give Me Texture Instant Oomph Powder to try as I'm on a constant mission for more volume! I wasn't too worried about texture, but my hair goes flat after blowdrying really quickly and other volumising products I've tried to date just haven't lasted very long. This 7g bottle costs £4.07 from Boots.

This is different to anything else I've tried before as it comes in the form of a powder. Thankfully the powder is released from the bottle quite slowly and in little bits, as the opening is thin and narrow. Otherwise, guaranteed this product would be everywhere but my hair!!

This VO5 powder definitely provides texture and oomph, quite quickly and easily, without leaving any white residue. However it does make your hair feel tacky and quite frankly makes me want to stick my head under the shower and give it a good wash, though it does brush out if it feels like you've applied too much. 

 Left: Second day hair with no product / Right: With VO5

The volume lasts for a few hours on me. Though I noted that on the Boots website it describes the product as "fantastic for giving fine hair a great big boost". (It doesn't say this on the bottle!) My hair is not fine at all, but fairly thick. So perhaps this just isn't suited for me and my hair- the volume might well last all day if your hair is fine. However I feel like I need to try and make use of it, so I used the powder on a night out recently. As the bottle is so small, I just popped it into my clutch bag and textured and oomphed as needed through the night.

The Verdict
VO5 Give Me Texture Instant Oomph Powder is a great concept, but just hasn't done the job for me. If you have fine hair then give it a try - but it just can't hold my thicker hair. I intend to carry on using this as it just seems such a waste otherwise, but I'll be trying something else for volume next time. 

To view the product on the Boots website, click here.

Have you tried VO5 Give Me Texture Instant Oomph Powder? What's your go-to product for long lasting volume?

Beauty Bird xx

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Top 5 Most Complimented Nail Varnishes

This was one of those blog post ideas that came to me as I was trying to get to sleep one night! These are the five nail varnishes that I've had the compliments and comments on when I've been wearing them. Good thing that I love them too!

Left to right:
Models Own Indian Ocean / Nails Inc Bluebell (Instyle magazine freebie) / Barry M Pure Turquoise / Topshop Eyes of Steel / Maybelline Forever Strong in Porcelain Pink*

The Maybelline Forever Strong in Porcelain Pink had the most comments from men! I'm not normally a big wearer of pink in general, so I was surprised by how much I liked this as well once applied. I think my favourite of all of these though has to be the Models Own Indian Ocean from the Beetlejuice range, the shimmery two tone colour is just beautiful.

What nail varnishes that you own get the most compliments?

Beauty Bird xx

*Item won in a giveaway.


Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Wave Goodbye to Whiteheads!

I hate spots. Who doesn't? If you're a regular reader of my blog you'll know that I'm spot prone and my skincare routine is completely focused on trying to keep my skin as spot free as possible. So I was really grateful when Jenny from Metique, a brand of Australian Tea Tree Oil products, offered to send me a bottle of their 10% Blended Tea Tree Oil (25ml) to try as a spot treatment. Tea tree oil is a natural ingredient and well known for its antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, therefore its treatment of spots, yet I've never actually tried it! Metique 10% Blended Tea Tree Oil also contains Vitamin C, Vitamin E and aloe vera.

All Metique products come gift wrapped and with free samples. I was so impressed by the packaging, it's so thoughtful and gives the product that personal touch. I didn't expect the samples either, so that was a nice surprise!

Metique 10% Blended Tea Tree Oil is a milky coloured liquid, with one of those thin, narrow dispensers so the liquid is released in controlled droplets. I've been using it at night over the last few weeks, applying it directly onto spots - you really don't need a lot! 

So does it work? For me, this product is most impressive on whiteheads. It dries up whiteheads so effectively, they are reduced significantly overnight. If you have one of those spots that is just a little red lump to start with, but you can see that little dot of white threatening to get bigger and bigger, this stops the whitehead forming any more. The spot doesn't completely disappear - the actual red bump takes longer to go, but you won't have to put up with the horrible white top for very long. When it comes to those large, lumpy spots though, I do find that I need to use my Dermalogica Overnight Clearing Gel for a little extra oomph.

The Verdict
Metique 10% Blended Tea Tree Oil is a great little product that really does work, especially on whiteheads! It's not a miracle worker and I'm not sure that it works any quicker on clearing other spots than other products I've tried, but it only costs £7.14 so I will definitely buy this myself when it runs out. Though I think this will last me for absolutely ages! It's a multi-tasking product too, so I can use it on bites, stings and scratches as well!

To visit the Metique website to see their full range of Australian Tea Tree Oil products, click here. I noticed they have a 10% Autumn discount on at the moment too!

What's your spot saviour? Have you ever tried a tea tree oil product to shift spots?

Beauty Bird xx

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

My Guest Post Over At Tattooed Tealady!

Hello lovelies!

This is just a quick one to let you know I've got a guest post over at Tattooed Tealady's blog all about why I'm mad for pure mineral makeup!

If you have a mo and fancy checking it out, you can click here to view the post!

Thank you!

Beauty Bird xx


Sunday, 14 October 2012

Help! I'm Addicted to Magazine Freebies...

I told myself that I wouldn't buy any magazines with freebies this month, despite being very tempted by the L'Occitane hand cream with Marie Claire. No, I told myself, having three different hand creams already is enough, I don't need four (even if it's perfect handbag size...)! I was doing well and had avoided shops selling magazines. Then I had to go to Tesco as we had run out of puppy biscuits and the magazine section is right by the door as you walk in... I utterly failed.

So as well as puppy biscuits I came out of Tesco with Marie Claire (£3.70) and Cosmopolitan (£3.50), two magazines I don't normally bother to buy, though I do quite enjoy reading Marie Claire. With Marie Claire you get a limited edition L'Occitane hand cream (I got the Mango Flower scent) and a Dove Colour Radiance Express Treatment Conditioner. With Cosmopolitan there's a Missguided Lipsplash lipgloss (love this name!) in three different shades - I picked up Peace, which is a peachy colour. There's also Love, a baby pink and Passion, a purpley pink. You also get a 15ml sample of Oral B's new 3D White Brilliance toothpaste, which promises whiter teeth in two weeks. I will use all of these freebies, I'm just telling myself off a bit because I didn't really need them and I'm trying to spend as little as possible this month!

It looks like I'll be spending more on magazines next month - out on 1st November, Glamour are giving away some NAILS INC NAIL VARNISHES! I'll be surprised if anyone can resist these though - worth £11.00 each choose from Motcomb Street (black), St James (red), Glamour Glitter (gold glitter) and Elizabeth Street (pale pink). I found this out thanks to Makeup Savvy - check out her blog post here to see pictures. 

Have you picked up any magazines just for freebies this month? Please tell me I'm not the only freebie addict! 

Beauty Bird xx


Thursday, 11 October 2012

Review: Betty Bouche Lip Scrubs by Betty Buff

I've wanted to try a lip scrub ever since reading blog posts about Lush's range of lip scrubs. However I never took the plunge and bought one from Lush as I thought £5.25 was a little expensive for such a small pot. Then I saw on Twitter that Betty Buff, who offer "sweet and sensitive skincare" made from only natural, plant based ingredients, were offering two Betty Bouche lip scrubs for £5.00. (They normally retail at £2.99 each.) This was just too good an offer to pass up! Especially as my lips have got really dry since the weather turned colder.

The two flavours are Strawberry Sauce and Honey Hot Lips and they smell divine! The ingredients are so simple - granulated sugar, shea butter and freeze dried strawberry and honey. If you're a DIYer this is probably something you could make yourself, but I'm just not that great at this sort of thing and I never seem to have much spare time! The scrub is fairly compressed into the tin so you do have to scrape it out and I have lost a bit of sugar out the side of the tin in doing so!

I've been trying to use these scrubs on my lips daily, following it up with my Figs and Rouge Rambling Rose Lip Balm. They're lovely to use and gently exfoliate, melting into your lips. Plus after you can lick it off and eat it! After use my lips look quite plump and feel soft. In the long term, these scrubs (in conjunction with lip balm) have definitely made a difference and I've experienced hardly any dryness since.

The Verdict
I'm really glad that I've added lip scrubs to my skincare collection - and they will definitely remain! I think these Betty Bouche lip scrubs are great value for money and I love the fact that they're so natural. Plus they really do work! My personal favourite is the Strawberry Sauce.

You can check out the full range of Betty Buff products here.

Do you use lip scrubs? Which is your favourite?

Beauty Bird xx


Tuesday, 9 October 2012

The £1.00 Bourjois Magic Nail Varnish Remover Dupe?

I never bought into the hype of the nail varnish remover pot when Bourjois released their Magic Nail Varnish Remover. I thought the idea of it was pretty good - no cotton wool and liquid remover needed! - but I didn't want to pay £4.99 for it!

However on a beauty browse through my local Poundland I spotted this dupe and thought for £1.00 it was worth a try. It looks very similar with the same bright pink pot, instead called Twist and Out Instant Nail Varnish Remover. According to the label, it's meant to be quick, compact and no fuss. However this contains acetone, whereas the Bourjois is acetone free and contains nourishing sweet almond oil and no parabens. 

Inside is a nail varnish remover soaked sponge that you pop your finger into to remove your nail varnish. The sponge isn't fixed to the sides of the pot so I find it moves around quite a bit. This certainly isn't instant, but yes it does remove nail varnish pretty quickly. Although when it came to removing glitter nail varnish I found this not to be so great. As you can see from my photos a lot of the sponge has pulled up and come apart where I was twisting to try and get the glitter off!! Since taking the pictures I've also noticed that the lid doesn't quite close down properly on one side too.

The Verdict
I'm pretty disappointed with this, though I feel like for only £1.00 I can't complain too much! You really do get what you pay for here. I am tempted to buy the Bourjois one now as the Poundland version isn't an exact dupe ingredient wise and I want to see if it really is as good as everyone says! Though at the end of the day I am always going to need cotton wool and a bottle of your standard nail varnish remover - I'm not sure this pot design will be very easy to use on my toes!!

What are your thoughts on these "instant" and "magic" nail varnish remover pots? Is the Bourjois one worth it?

Beauty Bird xx


Sunday, 7 October 2012

On The Fence: Primark Nail Varnishes

So the other month I had a bit of a shopping spree and one of the things I picked up was a pack of four mini nail varnishes from Primark for just £2.00! I love my glitter nail varnishes, so I thought these would be great to add to my collection.

Unfortunately Primark don't have names or shade numbers for these and the box didn't state a name for the overall pack either. So maybe we'll just go with (from left to right) shade 1, 2, 3 and 4 for convenience sake!

Shade 1 is the stand out nail varnish for me, as it has the same effect as the Model's Own Beetlejuice range, where there are two colours and you see a different one depending on which way you look at your nails! It's quite a grungy Autumn look, softened by the pink. Shade 2 is a light gold, shade 3 is a purpley pink and shade 4 a lovely mid blue. 

To achieve the finishes on the nail wheel I felt two coats of shades 1 and 4 was enough, but for shades 2 and 3 I used three coats for a little extra oomph. I also decided to apply shade 1 on my nails to get a better idea of the effect.

Now here's why I'm on the fence about these - they really, really smell! I know nail varnishes generally do, but these are definitely up a level. It reminded me of a really chemical smell, like paint thinner or white spirit. I have no idea why, if it's a different ingredient to normal perhaps? Or whether they've missed an ingredient? My nails seemed ok after removing the nail varnish.

So now I have four very pretty nail varnishes that it just seems such a shame not to use, even if they did only cost £2.00. Maybe I need a peg on my nose?!

Have you tried Primark nail varnishes? Did anyone else think they were pretty strong smelling?

Beauty Bird xx

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Hello It's Meeeee! (Plus How Much Is My Face Worth?)

I've been thinking about doing this "reveal" post for awhile but not been brave enough! However after some support and encouragement on Twitter, I decided to bite the bullet and just do it, though I am nervous just writing this!! I thought I'd combine it with the "How Much Is My Face Worth?" tag, as I've really been enjoying reading these recently.

I've been fairly anonymous up to now, but I think it will be nice for you to be able to put a face to the "Beauty Bird" name! Here's a little about me... My real name is Sasha and I'm 25. I work full time doing accounts and administration, I live with my boyfriend of 8 and a half years and our springer spaniel puppy. Hello! :-)

Here's what I used on my face above;

  • Benefit POREfessional mini - £2.00 with Glamour
  • Benefit That Gal mini - £2.00 with Glamour (used around my eyes to help brighten)
  • Cover FX Natural FX Liquid Foundation in Shade E0 - £37.00
  • Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection Concealer in Fair- £4.19
  • Jane Iredale PurePressed Powder in Light Beige - £32.50
  • Jane Iredale PurePressed Blush in Parfait - £17.85
  • E.L.F. Eyelid Primer in Sheer - £1.50
  • MUA Undressed Palette - £4.00 (shades 2 and 9)
  • Benefit They're Real Mascara - £18.50
  • MUA Lipstick in Shade 15 Juicy - £1.00
  • Balance Me Rose Otto Intensive Lip Salve - £2.00 with Glamour
 TOTAL = £122.54

I use most of these products every day, but will vary what I wear on my eyes and lips. However I'm getting the most use of the MUA Undressed Palette and the lipstick at the moment. I don't think this is too bad a total, though I sincerely hope it doesn't all disappear because if I had to buy it all at once - ouch! 

Hope you enjoyed this post!

Have you done this tag - how much is your face worth?

Beauty Bird xx


Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Beauty Spends in September

When I was completing my beauty profile on one of the questions asked was how much I spend a month on beauty products. I clicked the £25-£50 option, but realistically I don't ever actually add up what I spend every month. With lots of beauty bloggers doing spending bans and challenges at the moment, it got me thinking that this would be quite an interesting post to do!

Obviously what I buy every month varies massively, it depends on if anything needs replacing, whether I have a spending spree to treat myself or actually have any money spare to spend!

Here's what I bought this month:

  • VO5 Instant Oomph Powder - £4.07
  • Real Techniques Powder Brush - £5.00 (blog sale buy)
  • Moonie Face Cloths Pack of 3 - £5.99
  • Jane Iredale PurePressed Blush in Parfait - £17.85
  • Betty Buff Lip Scrubs in Strawberry Sauce and Honey Hot Lips - Special Offer 2 for £5.00
  • MUA Lipstick in Shade 15 Juicy - £1.00
  • MUA Nail Varnishes in Amaretto Crush and Plum Noir - £1.00 each
  • Essie Mini Nail Varnish in Bangle Jangle - £1.00 (blog sale buy)
TOTAL = £41.91

I didn't need to buy any shampoo or anything like that this month and I bought a load of skincare bits in August that I needed, so they're still going strong. I did pretty well I think, well I was in my £25-£50 guess anyway...! It's crazy to think though that if I spent the higher end value every month I'd be spending £600.00 per year, which is the same as a holiday! Although I didn't really "need" most of these products, I do love discovering, buying and using beauty products, plus I like to think in reality I'm pretty sensible when it comes to spending. I could have spent a whole lot more - my wishlist is pretty big right now!

Do you know what you spend every month on average? Do you add it up every month?

Beauty Bird xx
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