Wednesday, 15 May 2013

5 Simple Steps to Flawless Skin...

Now, I don't claim to have the best skin, but I do get a lot of people asking me how I get smooth skin and which foundation I use etc...

So I thought I would share with you the 5 steps to achieve flawless skin...


Before you even begin applying any makeup to the face you should make sure that your skin is fully prepped! 

You will never achieve a smooth, glowing result if you haven't exfoliated away all those dead skin cells and dry patches which make the skin look uneven and dull. Generally I would say that the skin should be exfoliated twice a week, however this really does depend on your skin type. I would suggest once a week for oily skins and as often as every other day for dry skins. If your skin is sensitive then I would go for a gentle exfoliator with fine particles to avoid aggravating the skin, something like Dermalogica's Daily Microfoliant or Clarins One Step Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser. Some good exfoliators that I have tried and liked, other than the ones I've mentioned above, are La Roche-Posay Physiological Ultra-Fine Scrub, Soap and Glory 'The greatest scrub of all' and St Ives Apricot Scrub.

All you need to do is gently massage the product into wet skin in circular motions for around one minute, that's it, and your makeup will go on so much better! 


Again, all skin types should moisturise, even the oiliest of skins can get dehydrated if you use a lot of products that 'strip' the skin of its natural oils. It also helps to provide a smoother base for your makeup. 

For a normal/dry skin types I would say moisturise before applying your foundation, but maybe allow 10 minutes in-between to allow the moisturiser to sink into the skin first, I like to use Dermalogica Skin Smoothing Cream or La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo prior to applying my makeup. For oily skins I would suggest either using an anti shine moisturiser or a primer prior to applying your foundation, just to help the product adhere to the skin and prevent it from looking too shiny.

A great primer for all skin types, but particularly oily skin, is Smashbox Photofinish Primer. Normal-dry skins generally do not need a primer as a moisturiser will do the job of smoothing the skin and foundation tends to last on these skin types better. However, oily skins tend to have trouble with the makeup 'sliding off' throughout the day, If you have this problem then a good primer will sort this out!


The first step with foundation is choosing the right one for you. If you are thinking of buying a particular foundation I would suggest going to the makeup counter and asking the counter assistant to apply it to your face (this is what they are there for), or even ask for a sample if you are not comfortable doing this, then walk around, go shopping etc and see how the foundation looks on your skin in different lights (artificial/daylight), and if you like the feel of it and how well it wears. If your happy with it then buy it! The same applies if you are buying a foundation in Superdrug, for example, use the samples and put a little bit on your jawline then go outside and make sure that it is the right colour match for you before you buy it!! Theres nothing worse than spending a lot of money on a product then getting home and trying it and realising you don't like it or it's the wrong colour.

Next step is finding out the best way to apply your foundation, personally I like using a 'buffing' brush, in my experience this provides the best finish, I use circular motions with my brush to buff the foundation into my skin. But thats not to say that this will work the best for you, the only way to find out is to experiment, use your hands, a sponge and different brushes to see which you like best! 

When applying the foundation I find it is best to start in the area of the face that you would like the most coverage and blend out from there, as some parts of the face may not need as much coverage as others. ALWAYS blend a little bit of the foundation down onto your neck, there is nothing worse than seeing where your foundation finishes at your jawline, this just makes it obvious that you are wearing makeup! Your foundation should look like its your own skin and should blend seamlessly to achieve a natural looking flawless result.

My most used foundations are, Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum, Rimmel Match Perfection, Clinique Even Better and Clarins Skin Illusion (all of these are about a medium coverage).


You may be able to skip this step if you are happy that your foundation has covered any problem areas or imperfections, but I don't tend to use a heavy coverage foundation so I always need to add extra coverage to my imperfections and dark circles. My favourite concealers at the moment are, Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection Liquid Concealer, for under my eyes, and Soap and Glory 'Kick Ass' cream concealer, for my imperfections and breakouts. 

It's also worth noting that peachy/ pinky/ orange toned concealers cancel out any blue/purple tones under the eyes, and yellow/green toned concealers cancel out redness.

I like to use a small synthetic brush to apply my concealer, however, your ring finger can work just as well by tapping the product onto the skin.
Concealer can be applied before or after foundation it is purely personal preference, I just like to do it after.


Finally, we need to set the makeup to keep it in place all day. For a normal/combination skin I would generally suggest just powdering down the centre of the face (Tzone and chin area) whereas an oily skin would probably need to be powdered all over. Dry skins do not always need powdering as it can cling to dry patches and make the makeup look cakey.

I recommend using a translucent powder as this sets the makeup in place without adding any more coverage or colour to the skin which can end up making you look overly 'made up'. My two favourites are the Rimmel Stay Matte Powder and MAC Blot Powder.

When applying your powder, with either a brush or a powder puff, you should always press or pat the powder onto the skin, if you sweep it across the skin you can end up wiping off or disturbing the makeup underneath.

QUICK TIP: It is important to remember that your lifestyle choices can also have an impact on your skin... I know it sounds obvious but if you drink lots of water, eat plenty of fruit and veg and exercise regularly then your skin will improve, as these all aid the removal of toxins from your body which equals healthier looking skin!

A x

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Quick April Favourites...

I've been pretty busy with work lately and will be for the next month or so, so my blog will probably get neglected a tad, but I thought I would update you guys with some of the products that I have bought recently and been loving this month...

First up, my most used hair product this month, by far... 

V05 Give Me Texture Tousled Style Spray...

I've been loving this for a low maintenance tousled hair style, it does exactly what it says on the tin! My hair is naturally slightly wavy with the odd curl if it feels like it, but it tends to look quite flat and lifeless if I just leave it to dry naturally. BUT with the addition of this fabulous product my hair magically has more texture, definition and body! Amazing right?!

I spritz this on my hair when its damp and 'scrunch' I then either leave it to dry naturally or partially dry my hair with the hairdryer, scrunching as I go. I never fully dry my hair with the hairdryer with this style as it starts to go frizzy, the best results are achieved when left to dry naturally! 

Once dry I spray some of the product on my hands then rub them together and scrunch through my hair just to finish off the style. So, easy peasy and much kinder to your hair than using heated appliances! I'm completely in love with this look for summer, the perfect beachy waves! 

I've also been using the Instant Oomph Powder from the same range to add more volume at my roots!

(£3.89 from Boots/ Superdrug/ Asda)

Next up... 

Models Own Nail Polish (Beetlejuice Collection) Indian Ocean...

I don't usually wear nail polish a lot, unless I am going out, however, I haven't been able to resist wearing this! 

It is a multi tonal iridescent blue shade with pink shimmer, on its own it looks nothing special, but layered on top of other nail varnishes it looks amazing! My pictures don't really do it justice at all, it is such a beautiful colour in person! 

Essie Mint Candy Apple is one of my favourite colours to layer it with, 
it is a gorgeous combination... if mermaids existed I definitely think this is the colour that they would wear on their nails! 

But lavender colour purples also look really pretty under this nail polish, I use Barry M - Berry Ice Cream

(Costs £5 and can be purchased at Boots)


L'Oreal 3 in 1 Purifying Micellar Solution... 

Truth be told I did only buy this half way through April, but I have used it everyday since, so it still counts...

I am so impressed with this, it works exactly the same as my Bioderma and perfect for effectively removing all your makeup at the end of the day, or even as a quick refreshing cleanse in the morning! 

(For a more in depth review/info click HERE

I think it's still on half price, or at least a reduced introductory price at the moment in most stores (Asda, Superdrug etc) It's £4.99 at full price so it's still not going to break the bank even at that!

A x