Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Getting Your Glow On: Putting Shimmering Body Oils to the Test

As we're now mid-July (how did that even happen?!) I think it's safe to say summer is well and truly here. One of my favourite things about this time of year is going on nights out and getting glammed up - as fun as it is during the cooler months, there's just something about summer evenings sitting in beer gardens wearing pretty floral dresses - or, even better, getting dolled up every night on holiday - that makes me oh so happy.

My favourite way to finish off a summer 'going out' outfit has got to be adding a touch of bronzing, shimmering body oil to my skin. There's nothing better than complementing your incredible tan (whether fake or real) with a touch of sparkle. It makes your skin look healthier, and ultimately just ups the glam level x1000. So, I thought I'd run through the three shimmering bronzing oils, from varying price-points, that I've been putting to the test lately and let you know my thoughts on these glow-getters...

TempleSpa Goldentini Bronzing Body Treatment Oil* - £25
The most expensive of the three I tried was TempleSpa's offering, described as 'a cocktail party for the skin'. It comes in a sleek plastic tube with a pump for easy application, and has 'photo-reflecting' agents that it claims help bring 'life-giving radiance' to your skin. The first thing that hit me about this one is just how incredible it smells. I wasn't expecting much in the scent department for any of these oils as I see them as more of a cosmetic product than anything else, but I was totally blown away by this. An aromatic mix of mimosa, honey, bitter orange, green florals, sandalwood, oakmoss and sweet musks, it's such a treat to apply and could honestly be used in place of a perfume. The negatives? Well, this one is seriously lacking in the shimmer department. It's definitely more of a gel-oil than the other products, and whilst it does give a hint of glow it is just that - a very, very subtle hint. You really have to look to find the shimmer, which for me is really disappointing as I want ALL the shimmer when it comes to a product like this. Such a shame, as it definitely wins in terms of nourishment and scent!

NUXE Huile Prodigeuse Multi-Use Dry Oil* - £17
A slightly lower price-point than the TempleSpa product, NUXE's Huile Prodigeuse is great because it's not just for your skin. You can use this on your face, body and even your hair, something which I definitely think I would like to try of an evening on holiday! This one comes in a square glass bottle, which makes it slightly impractical for travelling, and you have to pour out the product onto your skin. Thankfully it comes out slowly otherwise it would definitely make for a very messy application! This oil contains six previous plant oils, claims to nourish, soften and illuminate and definitely ups the shimmer factor - making it much more what I was expecting from this kind of product. The shimmer is a really nice warm copper-gold which looks great on the skin without being too much - it's subtle yet shimmery enough to notice. Scent-wise it smells good, but nowhere near as beautiful as the TempleSpa product.

Cocoa Brown Golden Goddess Shimmering Dry Body Oil* - £9.99
Finally, Cocoa Brown's Golden Goddess Shimmering Dry Body Oil is the cheapest of the bunch and by far the one with the most shimmer pay-off. Like the NUXE oil, it comes in a glass bottle but thankfully has a pump for easy application. Its shimmer is very golden (hence the name) and looks so beautiful on tanned skin. It has a pleasant scent (again, nowhere near as nice as the TempleSpa oil) and contains coconut oil, but other than that I don't think it really has many nourishing skin benefits. This is definitely the best one aesthetically - if you want to go all-out on a night out with the shimmer, this one would be your best choice. Plus, it's a great price!

Overall I think all of these oils are great in their own way - the TempleSpa product would have been incredible if it weren't for the fact it contains little-to-no shimmer, and the Cocoa Brown oil would tick all the boxes if it had some more nourishing benefits. I think the NUXE offering is probably the one that ticks every box to an extent, as it smells good, has good nourishing qualities and a good amount of shimmer. That being said, I think the one I'm most likely to reach for would be the Cocoa Brown product - for me it's really about how the product looks on the skin and whilst I probably preferred the more copper tones of the NUXE oil, the pay-off of Cocoa Brown's product edged it for me. I think my perfect combo is going to be mixing a bit of Cocoa Brown in with the TempleSpa product so I get the scent, the nourishing benefits AND the shimmer pay-off. Phew!

Have you tried any shimmering body oils? Let me know!

Friday, 30 June 2017

Little Things #16

Unicorn Powerbank*
Okay, so first up on the little things I've been loving lately has got to be my Unicorn Portable Charger from Prezzybox. Whilst I do have a few portable chargers already, none of them are anywhere near as gorgeous as this one. I mean, it looks like the unicorn emoji - it doesn't get much better than that, right?! It's really compact and in a rubberised material so it's really easy to just throw in your bag and go. Such a steal at £13.99 too - although it looks like it's sold out at the minute. Usually Prezzybox re-stock pretty regularly though, so keep an eye out for that one!

Oh my gosh, I think 2017 was the year I well and truly fell in love with peonies. The ultimate blogger flower, peonies are in season right now and I just haven't been able to resist getting my hands on some. I'd been waiting for some to come into Aldi for weeks this week my prayers were answered - hooray! They're an incredible £3 a bunch from Aldi (two bunches are pictured) and they last so well. These babies have been in my possession for almost a week and they are still looking as beautiful as ever. I can't recommend enough getting some before they inevitably disappear! 

Mermaid Fruit Infuser*
So, we've all heard about how fantastic drinking water is - it makes your skin clearer, gives you more energy, helps you lose weight, blahblablah. But the thing is, it's so blimmin' boring! Whilst I'm more than happy to guzzle away on a bottle at the gym, day-to-day I find it really hard to reach for. So, this Mermaid Fruit Infuser (again, from my beloved Prezzybox) seemed like a really good way of making water a little more exciting, so I'm more likely to drink it. It has super cute shells all over the front and is emblazoned with the phrase 'I'm secretly a mermaid' (I wish) so it looks super pretty on my desk, but also it's obviously a fruit infuser so you can pop whatever fruit you want in the little infuser bit and it just gives your water a really nice, subtle flavour. I've been putting some frozen summer fruits in mine to keep it cool whilst making it a touch more exciting. 

Silver Tiara Ring*
Okay, so I know I go on about JewelleryBox.co.uk a lot, but it's honestly my favourite place right now to find jewellery. I recently picked up this Silver Tiara Ring (or princess ring, as I like to call it) and I am completely obsessed. It was a total steal at just £13 - I've seen a really similar one in Pandora for five(!!) times the price so it really is a total bargain. I've been wearing it constantly since I got it! 

'Caraval' by Stephanie Garber
Last but not least, a book I absolutely loved recently was 'Caraval' by Stephanie Garber. I must admit, what drew me to it at first was the pretty cover (I'd spied it on Sophie Makeup's Instagram - if you're not following her - go do it now!) but after reading up about it and seeing it being compared to 'The Night Circus' by Erin Morgenstern which I absolutely LOVED, I had to have it. It's a mix of fantasy and romance, and is all about the illusive Caraval - an interactive, once-a-year week-long performance that will make you wonder what is real and what is fantasy. I absolutely loved it and totally recommend it to anyone who loves a bit of magic and fantasy in their lives.

What little things have you been loving lately? Let me know in the comments!

*This post is in collaboration with JewelleryBox.co.uk*

Wednesday, 28 June 2017

17 Fashion Finds for Summer

2. Ego Bow Sliders - £19.99
13. River Island Floral Playsuit - £27 (via ASOS)
14. Missguided High-Waisted Bikini - £15 (top) and £10 (bottoms) (via ASOS)
17. Boohoo Floral Maxi Dress - £25 (via ASOS)

Wow... I picked a good day to put this post up didn't I?! Despite the fact it is quite possibly the most miserable, wettest day in months outside right now, I am desperately hoping that summer is going to make a come-back! This being the case, I thought I'd put together a wishlist/fashion post on all the summery pieces I've been loving lately. 

This season I'm all about bright florals, maxi dresses and playsuits. There are just so many gorgeous, affordable options out there that we're spoilt for choice! Whilst I'm not jetting off away anywhere this summer (sob!) I can still appreciate the insane amount of stunning bikinis and swimsuits there are in the shops - I'm particularly a fan of the bardot and high-waisted bikinis; they just look so flattering. 

Accessories-wise, sliders seem to be the shoe of the summer and I'm totally on board with that. Comfy, easy to wear and available in so many different varieties (I've seen plain ones, ones with bows on, ones with super cute embellishments like these which I really hope come back in stock!) it's no wonder they are everywhere right now. I'm also loving the slogan bags and sun hats I've seen across the likes of Accessorize and Skinny Dip London - so perfect for holidays! 

Do any of my fashion finds take your fancy? Let me know! 

Monday, 26 June 2017

New In: Haircare

Okay - time to talk haircare. My hair is always a bit of a 'mare if I'm completely honest - it's very dry (as is the way with being a blonde) and as it's quite long, it's gets oh-so knotty, all the damn time. This being the case, I'm always on the look-out for new haircare products to try, and having recently come across quite a few new products, I thought I would share my thoughts on them with you!

Unwash Bio-Cleansing Conditioner, Anti-Residue Cleanse and Hydrating Masque
Okay, so first up is a brand that I am so, so excited to share with you guys. Unwash is all about 'a new level of clean' - unlike most shampoos, it aims to cleanse your hair without inflicting harsh chemicals that strip the moisture onto it. I was a little sceptical at first - I mean, surely a product that veers away from usual cleansing won't clean my hair as well, right? Wrong. I absolutely love this stuff. The new Bio-Cleansing Conditioner (used in place of shampoo) doesn't really feel like it's cleansing when you're using it (as it's much gentler) but it really does give your hair an amazing clean whilst keeping it feeling nice and healthy. The Bio-Cleansing Conditioner combined with the Hydrating Masque is honestly the ultimate dream team - my hair has never felt so good after using these too. It's easy to comb through when wet (something which is simply never possible with my hair) and my hair looks and feels so healthy, hydrated and nourished. If product build-up is something you worry about, the Anti-Residue Cleanse is another product from Unwash that does exactly what it says on the tin, getting rid of product build-up and oil. So much love for this brand!

Revlon Uniq 1 Dry Shampoo*
I'm completely obsessed with the Revlon Uniq 1 haircare range - their All In One treatments are honestly my Holy Grail when it comes to haircare, so I had high hopes when I heard they were bringing out a dry shampoo. Sadly, after trialling the dry shampoo for a few weeks I have to say, I'm not impressed. It claims to have '10 real benefits' and whilst it does smell good, and feel nice on your hair, it just didn't do it for me in terms of keeping my hair grease-free. Whereas other dry shampoos would make my hair look fresh instantly, this one by Revlon really didn't. It's a shame as I have nothing bad to say about any of the other Uniq 1 products - just disappointed that this one doesn't compare to the rest.

Herbal Essences Daily Detox*
Whilst I didn't include them all in the picture, Herbal Essences has released a new range of 'Daily Detox' shampoos, including 'Shine', 'Clean' and 'Volume'. The Daily Detox range aims to naturally cleanse hair of daily residue, without the use of silicones or parabens, leaving it healthy and clean. Each variety has a different scent, all of which are super fresh and clean-smelling, particularly perfect (I think) for the summer months. If you wash your hair in the morning these are a must-have, as they're so fresh and energising to use, they'll really wake you up for the day. I really recommend them and for the price, you can't go wrong!

Aussie Miracle Nourish Shampoo and Conditioner*
Not long ago Aussie released their new Miracle Nourish range and being a big fan of Aussie's products, I just had to give it a go. Featuring a shampoo, conditioner and the famous 3 Minute Miracle deep treatment, the Miracle Nourish range is all about nourishing and hydrating your hair, or, as it states on the packaging, giving it a 'nourishing hug'. I was excited to try it, as I've found pretty much all of Aussie's products I've tried in the past to be pretty nourishing, but sadly I wasn't blown away by this. Don't get me wrong - I don't hate it - the range just isn't something I think I'll be rushing out to purchase any time soon. One of the things I love about Aussie's products is the smell - and this one just didn't smell the same, which I think disappointed me from the off-set!

Colab Dry Shampoo in Paradise
Say hello to my new favourite dry shampoo! I'd heard all the hype about Colab when it first came out, but after being a Batiste girl through-and-through, I didn't really feel the need to look for an alternative. However, I'm not one to resist a good offer, or pink flamingo packaging, so naturally I had to try the 'Paradise' version to see what all the fuss was about. And boy, am I glad I did. This dry shampoo is honestly the best I've ever tried - it smells great, it doesn't leave your hair looking all grey and dusty and, most importantly, it keeps your hair looking and feeling super fresh. This is probably a bit grim but I actually went for almost two weeks without washing my hair thanks to this bad boy - it's that good. For the price I really don't think you can go wrong.

What haircare products have you been trying lately? Let me know!
All images and content © Hannah Vickers for Away with the Fairies 2010- unless stated otherwise. All rights reserved.