Ciaté Christmas Advent Calendar – Week 2!

Hi all!

I have opened enough little doors of joy to now do my Ciaté advent calendar post for week 2. There is a great mix of colours and textures that are great to use on their own as well as together. Again, I have included quite a few close up pictures so you can choose your favourites!

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‘Strawberry Milkshake’ and ‘Prima Ballerina’

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‘Mineral Clarity’ and ‘Velvet Tuxedo’

'Big Yellow Taxi' and 'Let It Snow'

‘Big Yellow Taxi’ and ‘Let It Snow’

One of the stand out things I notice from the Ciaté nail polishes is WOWOWEEWOW the glitters are insane! ‘Prima Ballerina’ is the most iridescent glittery shiny bottle of sparkliness you will ever see! Really really stunning colours, same for ‘Let It Snow’ as well.

I love the pale pink ‘Strawberry Milkshake’ and I think they have got the name spot on! The one I will gingerly apply then have a nail polish remover pad at the ready, is ‘Big Yellow Taxi’ which is such a ‘canary’ yellow that it kind of frightens me. Not sure I’m brave enough to wear that! I will be doing some nail looks using these polishes, but I am in love with almost all of them already!

Which is your favourite?

By the way this might be the best advent calendar I have ever had…:)

 

 

 

 

Ciaté ‘Members Only’ with ‘Sloaney, Sweetie’ Gold Tip

The great thing about having a beauty advent calendar for Christmas is that, 1. You can open little presents each day that don’t get nommed straight away, and 2. You get to have fun using them too!

In the first week of my Ciaté advent calendar, two polishes caught my eye that I thought would look good together.

‘Members Only’ I LOVED, a peachy toned pale polish with tiny gold flecks running through it. Using a couple of coats of this, I then waited for that to dry and added a gold glitter tip using ‘Sloaney, Sweetie’.

I can tell you right now that I hate this name with a passion. It makes me cringe inside, and it reminds me of posh people who are famous for nothing in particular. There is a similar polish that has longer gold strips in it by Bourjois and that is called ‘Sun Scales’, which I really like the name of!

Finish with a coat of Seche Vite to make sure that the polish lasts at least a week.

This is such an easy nail polish look to do, but it looks like you have put LOADS of effort into it!

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What are your favourite kinds of nail looks to do?

I will be trying out as many polishes from the advent calendar as I can, so you can actually see them on before you make any moves towards buying, if you are that way inclined.

Thanks for reading!

 

December Favourites

I have a few beauty rituals I have been loving this month so far. These involve 6 products, a few of them are things I have always loved that I’d like to talk about, and a couple are more recent finds that have made their way onto my dressing table.

A small mix of nail care, hair care and beauty, these things are part of my every day routine and if I lose any I’m running around the house shouting about them!

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Garnier Miracle Cream, Body Shop Wooden Hair Brush, Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection Concealer, Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream, Burts Bees Lip Balm, Seche Vite

Here are my December favourites:

1. Not wearing foundation- 

I stopped wearing foundation in summer, and started to use a really light coverage BB cream and then just concealer. This not only means my skin can breathe a bit more, but also it takes me less time to get ready in the morning! As my skin gets quite dry, I use a moisturiser first, then blob the Garnier Miracle Skin Cream onto my face and blend in using my fingers. Then, I just use the Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection concealer on blemishes and dark circles, and use my Real Techniques contour brush to blend this in! Job done :)

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2. Looking after my locks- 

This Body Shop wooden hair brush is SO GOOD. I know at the end of the day it’s just a hair brush but because it is wooden, you don’t have horrid plastic bristles that tug and pull on your hair. Now my hair is the longest it has ever been, and is also dip dyed this means that my hair is prone to breakage, particularly at the ends. Using this brush keeps my hair shiny, and in tact (which is useful!). I think I might get another one of these for travelling too, as it is an ideal size!

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I bought this Morrocanoil from Feel Unique and it has lasted me AGES already! This stuff is brilliant, and it is rightly raved about all over the tinternets. I tend to use a small blob of this through the ends of my damp hair after I have used my tangle teezer on it. What I find is even better, is if you warm the oil between your palms before applying through the ends of your hair as it means it gets spread evenly and won’t make your hair greasy. I find my hair is usually really soft after it has been blow dried, and it great for coloured hair.

3. Keep up with Lipcare- 

In Winter you are bombarded with artificial light, harsh heating and chilling winds which can dry your skin, hair and lips. Don’t forget about this lovely part of your face or you could end up suffering with chapped lips because of it. My favourite thing that I discovered recently is the Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream. I had heard ALOT about this product, as I’m sure a lot of you guys have too. This amber coloured gel cream is brilliant, it is soothing, moisturising and also acts as a great barrier to make sure your lips stay protected. It is also fragrance free, which I like. If you are looking for something to moisturise your lips before using lipstick, this is ideal! (Unless you want a matte lip that is…)

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For day use I tend to reach for the Burts Bees Coconut and Pear Lip Balm, which is a travel friendly, soothing waxy lip balm. Although this isn’t AS soothing as the 8 Hour Cream and it does need topping up a lot, it smells gorgeous (quite like chocolate weirdly enough) and is not very expensive.

4. NAILED IT- 

Seche Vite will ALWAYS be in my favourites unless something comes along that can apply nail polish for me, and blow on it itself (any ideas?) I buy this top coat from Amazon, and have gone through two bottles already. The only two criticisms I have is that when you get to the bottom, it is hard to use the last bit of it. Also, if you wear a lot of red polishes (like I do, usually burgundy), it tints the Seche Vite as you are applying pressure on the colour, so some of it transfers into your Seche Vite.

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I use this every single time I paint my nails, it lasts forever and really does dry so so quick. I find when I start on the little finger of my left hand, by the time I get to the little finger of my right, the polish is almost dry.

(Sorry that the lighting is weird in these pictures and it looks like I have ten shades of blanket).

What are your favourites so far this month?

Thanks for reading!

 

Regent Street Nails Inc

After you lovely ‘Pressers seemed to like my last ‘Understated Christmas Manicure‘ post, I thought I would do a few more of these so you can see how I have my nails week on week. I used to actually bite my nails, so being able to experiment knowing it will look half decent means that I now ALWAYS like to have presentable nails.

The look I went for this week used Nails Inc ‘Regent Street’, which is a gorgeous deep burgundy colour which is perfect for Autumn/Winter. To make this slightly more christmassy I added a gold glitter over the top of the ring finger nail, as an accent. This lifts a glossy prim and proper manicure and adds a touch of fun.

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Recently I have been loving keeping my nails quite short (nobody wants sharp talons when they are tapping away at a keyboard at work), and keeping them quite squoval (square oval) as this is the most flattering shape for me.

The gold glitter polish I used was a No7 one, but I have to say I’m not a massive fan as it feels quite gritty and the glitter particles are quite big. It’s not a polish you can layer up, as it comes out quite thick from the minute the brush touches the nail.

As always, a layer of Seche Vite means that I know for sure I will last for at least 1 week before I find any chips or scuffs…perfect so that I can get on with Christmas shopping, baking and lazing around!

Ciaté Christmas Advent Calendar! – Week 1 BONUS POST

I am overjoyed to tell you that we have a new addition to the family…A CIATÉ ADVENT CALENDAR!

Please no cards or gifts, I am overjoyed enough!

This is the first ever beauty advent calendar that I have had and I think it will be a constant each year from now on.

I have decided to show you the amazing polishes I have been getting on a weekly basis so not to bombard you with smaller briefer posts. I am really impressed with this advent calendar so far and it was definitely worth the money. Moreover, getting to open one of those little doors each day and see what colour or glitter I get really does makes me feel super Christmassy!

Here is a painstakingly set up picture to show you the lovely little bottles I got for the first week of my advent calendar:

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Left – ‘Headliner’, Right – ‘Sharp Tailoring’

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Left – ‘Members Only’, Right – ‘Girl with a Pearl’

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Left – ‘Sloaney, Sweetie’, Right – ‘Runway Ribbon’

I have to say my favourites from this week are ‘Headliner’, ‘Sharp Tailoring’ and ‘Members Only’. ‘Members Only’ in particular is my favourite, it’s a beautiful peach shade with teeny tiny flecks of gold running through it.

I will hopefully update this post with pictures of the polish actually on at a later date!

I hope you guys like this style of post, thanks for reading!

:)

 

The Christmas Tag!

George II

We name all of our Snowmen George. I think this was George VI. It had been a rough year and he ate his feelings…#fatty

Well, as you guys know it is that time of year to be merry and…cheer? This means we are in the full flow of the christmas build up. It definitely feels cold enough to snow in the UK and my car has been getting suitably icy in the mornings…and tomorrow I will be making mince pies!

This all adds up to the below thought running through my head:

I AM SO EXCITED FOR CHRISTMAS AND PRESENTS AND CHRISTMAS!

I have been tagged by the brilliant LittleBitSoph, so without further ado let’s answer some christmas questions!!!

1) What is your favourite Christmas movie?

I have a few staple films that I have to watch that most people will know and love. The first one is Elf (my favourite bit in it being when Buddy discovers the chewing gum stuck under the railings…it grosses me out at the same time but it is hilarious!). Will Ferrel is amazing in it, and seeing the bit where he FABULISES Gimbles makes me feel all christmassy and decorate-y.

Miracle on 34th Street is also a film I love to watch, it has that girl who was in Matilda in it and a very convincing Father Christmas in Richard Attenborough’s fine display of acting. There’s nothing better than watching this curled up with a blanket and a cup of Nutella hot chocolate! (literally a massive spoonful of nutella with lots of milk microwaved).

2) Do you open your presents on Christmas eve or Christmas morning?

We ALWAYS open our presents on Christmas morning, if my sisters knew that I had opened any of their presents on Christmas Eve I’m sure they would be having words with me.

When we were little it was always me (being the youngest) going to jump on everyone still in bed and going ‘WAKE UPPPPP!’. This usually progressed to annoyance as we waited for my Dad to get up and come downstairs to open presents! And then my mum thrusting the black bin bag at us to quickly gather scrunched up dregs of wrapping paper…JOY

3) Do you have a favourite Christmas memory?

This is a fairly recent Christmas memory and typically it revolves around food. I am ALWAYS in charge of Christmas desserts, and last year I made an apple tarte tatin. The smell that engulfs the house is incredible, apply caramelly pastry-y goodness. We all gathered around the dining table as soon as it was put down, and leant over the dish gobbling it until it was all gone (we also ate it with ice cream which was amazing)!

Don’t let anyone tell you we aren’t classy…

4) Favourite festive food?

Mince pies are definitely up there (I say I make them but I basically use jarred mince meat-fruit and encase it in lovely short crust pastry). Other than that, SHEDLOADS of chocolate, garlic and rosemary roast potatoes and an amazing roast chicken.

5) Favourite Christmas gift?

It probably has to be the red and white Christmas onesie that my sister bought for me last year. I’m sure they only had a teenage sized one left so I can’t bend down in it but it sure is the comfiest thing that I own!

6) Favourite Christmas scent?

Hmm well it’s not really a ‘scent’ but I LOVE the smell of the amazing cooking and baking smells that fill our house around Christmas time. You can’t beat a Christmas dinner, and I particularly love baking when I’m off work because it makes our living room smell like a bakery. Can’t complain about that!

 7) Do you have any Christmas Eve traditions?

To be honest we usually spend Christmas Eve preparing the food for the next day so that we don’t have to faff around Christmas morning. When I was younger though, we always used to put out a mince pie and a glass of brandy for Father Christmas (aka my dad). The sweetest thing was when my family would hack some chunks out of the carrot I would put out for the reindeer to make it look like they had had a little snack as they waited for Father Christmas to unload the presents :):):).

8) What tops your tree?

A giant gold star! Depending on who decorates the tree it can be a little wonky, but not if i’m around…

9) As a kid what was one of the crazy things you always asked for but never received?

Oh my goodness, get ready for this list, and let me know if you wanted them too:

An Elefun, a Blush Art, a Sticker Maker, a Tamagotchi and about a million things starred in the Argos catalogue :)

10) What’s the best thing about Christmas for you?

Hmmm, I think the best thing about Christmas for me is actually pretty selfish…having time off work!! I have always been very lucky and get around 2 weeks off for Christmas…which means shopping, baking and watching Christmas films!!!

I hope this post has made you feel Christmassy and reminisce about fond memories with your own families.

I’d like to tag a few fellow bloggers, please let me know if you get around to doing it! I’d like to read them :)

Winter Skincare Routine

Around Winter, my skin tends to get quite dry as things like heating, artificial light and cold wind can be quite harsh on your face. This is why I try to tailor my winter skin care to deal with this better, as more tailored skin care means a better base for any make up you decide to use.

Here are the products that I use:

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IN THE SHOWER:

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To prep my skin for moisturiser, in the shower I use the St Ives Apricot Scrub which is gentle enough to use on the face. This exfoliator is really nice and I have used it for years. It helps to brighten and soften your skin, and keep it clear of spots. I think I have only ever bought one of these, and exfoliating once every two days with a small blob means that this has actually lasted FOREVER.

After this, I use the Neutrogena ‘Visibly Clear’ wash and mask. I very rarely actually use this as a mask, but it works perfectly as a daily wash to help keep your skin clear. I am quite lucky and do not get very many spots, and I think it is down to this stuff. It feels quite clay based, and your skin does usually feel really soft after use.

BEFORE MAKE UP:

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During the day time, the first product I reach for is my trusty Nivea creme, which is great to use as a lip balm, particularly in winter.

I then use the Superdrug B. Energised eye cream, which is nice to apply with your ring finger to make sure that you aren’t tugging the delicate skin around your eye. This isn’t the nicest eye cream I have used, but it does the trick. Only tip is do not get this too close to your waterline, I have quite sensitive eyes and if I get a bit overexcited when applying this tends to make my eyes water.

Then for the rest of my face, I use the Clinique Moisture Surge, which is a gorgeous gel cream that sinks into the skin and really leaves it feeling soft and moisturised. This is quite pricey, but I definitely will be buying this again as it suits my normally dry skin really well.

Sometimes, when my skin is looking a bit blotchy, OR I get a bout of pigmentation (usually happens around my nose or side of my cheeks) I reach for the La Roche Posay Effeclar Duo, which I tend to use for a few days and it really helps to clear up any imperfections and marks.

Before actually applying any concealer or make up, I use the Garnier Miracle Skin Cream as a BB cream, just to get a bit of base colour onto my face and even out my complexion. I have worked out what this smells like, and it is a bit like yoghurt (not too sure how I feel about this) but it really does even out your skin tone and is a nice light base to wear under make up.

BEFORE BED: 

The only difference when I moisturise before bed time, is that instead of the Clinique Moisture Surge I swap this for the Nivea Regenerating Night Cream. This is a really thick moisturiser that simply feels like it ‘does good’. Again, not my favourite night time moisturiser but it doesn’t break me out, and it moisturises deep into the skin.

Thanks for reading!

Pre-Christmas Mini Haul #2!

Following a brilliant weekend shopping with my best friend from University, I thought I would bring you a mini haul to show you the things that I bought. We had the best weekend meeting up with one of my most beautiful friends, shopping all day in Birmingham and nomming bacon sandwiches on Sunday morning. Apart from the fact we were both riddled with cold germs, it was perfect :).

Just to top it off, we both got an array of gifts…for ourselves! I am going to show you mine here:

1. New Look Tartan Skirt – £19.99

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I have fallen in love with this colour combination this winter, I think there is something so autumnal about the combination of blue and green, especially as it is tartan. The zip details really give it an edge, and it is the perfect length to be worn with black tights and winter boots (without looking too mini-skirtish).

2. New Look Pale Lace Jumper – £7.00 (was £14.99)

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This jumper is really light weight, and the pale pink lace across the bottom will look great worn with jeans or black trousers. Also, it was a bargain at half the price! Quite thin though, so I’ll have to wear a black cami underneath to make sure I don’t flash anyone…

3. River Island Faux Fur Leather Jacket – £65.00

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NOW, this is my favourite thing that I bought last weekend. I swear when I was walking around River Island I saw about 5 people carrying this jacket around either going to try it on or buying it (which pleased me and annoyed me at the same time). This jacket is genius, the faux fur is the SOFTEST thing you will ever touch (maybe apart from a kitten or something). Also, the fur is actually detachable, which means this jacket will take me through winter and into spring, so I don’t look like a Yeti that got lost. It’s quite pricey don’t get me wrong, but I think it is TOTALLY worth it.

 4. Topshop ‘Rio Rio’ Lipstick- £8.00

Originally when browsing through the Topshop cosmetics, I was actually looking for a dark plum shade, but then ‘Rio Rio’ caught my eye. A bright orangey red, this colour is really eye catching and will look great in summer, or as a daring shade for winter on those bright crisp mornings. I am a big fan of Topshop make up, and I think that the lipsticks in particular have great staying power, although the formula isn’t as great as say a Mac or YSL lipstick, it still does the job on a budget.

Also, may I add you get a very satisfactory ‘click’ when shutting this lipstick. This does matter.

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This finishes up my second Mini Haul! What pre-Christmas gifts have you been buying for yourself? :)

The Understated Christmas Manicure

Hi All!

I thought I would do a quick post on my favourite style of understated manicure, that still has that something special about it for Christmas. Nude nail polishes are having a thing at the moment, along with muted grey taupes and beiges. These can look so chic, and help to elongate your fingers.

My version of an understated Christmas manicure uses a muted beige from Rimmel and a touch of sparkle with a Barry M Glitter tip:

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Rimmel 500 ‘Caramel Cupcake’ and Barry M 350 ‘Diamond Glitter’

I sometimes find it difficult to pin point the exact nude that will suit my skin tone, as often they can end up too similar to the shade of my skin. This can make the polish look too orangey, or too cool toned. The Rimmel shade is a lovely and rather non-offensive nude that will suit most skin tones. It has a taupe-y tone to it, so won’t come off too orange.

Here are the products that I used:

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Please don’t think I’m a tramp for the weird marks on the Rimmel lid, that is actually where I’ve shut the polish SO tight I have had to open it with my TEETH. Yes, you heard right. Teeth.

The Rimmel polish has a wide brush which makes it easy to use, so about two coats of this is perfect to build up an opaque colour.

Then, once that is 3/4 dry, I used the Barry M Glitter to gently press some of the polish onto the tips.

I find the best way to do this is to put on a really thin layer on each nail, then go back and layer it a little bit more. This means that you won’t end up with a lump of polish at the end of the nail (which won’t dry and will probably end up smeared on your face by freak accident).

Finish with a layer of Seche Vite and you are good to go! (Also, this will look great on people who like to wear silver rings…I am not a massive ring person so I don’t bother…looks great with or without!)

 

The Burgundy Lip

Hello ‘Pressers!

One key trend that is ALL OVER the beauty scene this winter is the dark red lip, or burgundy lip. Usually more of a nudey – pinky lip person, this is quite bold but looks great as part of a winter make up look.

I know that brands like Nars, Mac and Charlotte Tilbury really rule the roost when it comes to matte style bold lips, but I have also heard great things about the Rimmel bold lipsticks. I thought I’d give Rimmel a go, and also try a lip liner of a similar colour to really do it properly.

The shade I chose is ‘Starry Eyed’ in the Lasting Finish range, matching this with the 1000 Kisses  ‘Black Tulip’ lip liner:

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I think the key things to remember with wearing a bold lip are:

  • Keep the rest of your make up toned down (I tend to leave blusher and just use bronzer to make sure it’s not too full on)
  • Moisturise your lips to make sure the colour lasts the longest
  • Make sure your lip liner is sharpened!
  • Slowly build up the colour rather than apply thickly

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The lip liner is great, (smells just like Crayola though which I’m not too sure about) and really helps you when you apply the actual lip colour.

The lip stick itself is a good texture, not too matte but is really pigmented. Be careful when you first apply it though or you could end up looking like Ronald McDonald. Not a good look.

At a measly £2.99 for the lip liner, and only £4.99 for the lipstick itself, it is MUCH better value than some of the higher end brands, so affordable AND looks great for a Christmas night out :).