DR PAW PAW BALMS

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Dr Paw Paw balms worried me a bit at first, they're a multi purpose balm, but just how multi purpose can one product be? Luckily these 3 balms shocked me, they all have a few uses, some better than others but I just cannot get enough of these at the moment. At first I struggled so much to get product out of the tubes that it put me off using it, but I think the ends of mine were just a little dry. When I finally got into the product, I was desperate to try out all of their uses.

PEACH PINK BALM
The coloured balms have less uses due to their colour, so they're not as multi purpose as a clear balm, but they're still pretty handy! I've been using the balm as a lip and cheek tint and it's absolutely gorgeous on the lips and skin. It creates a gorgeous coral flushed look on the cheeks, and the staying power is incredible, it lasts pretty much all day, and fades evenly so no need to touch up. It creates a peachy pink shade on the lips, like your lips but better. It's a thick balm so a little goes a long way.

YELLOW CLEAR BALM
This balm can literally be used for anything. I've used it to keep my eyebrows in place after powder, I've used it to help nourish my split ends, I've used it on my knees and elbows to get rid of dry patches. I've never known a balm with so many uses. It makes a great lip balm too, which is always good. I recently started rubbing it in to my cuticles as my nails are so gross, and it's strengthened my nails and my cuticles are in much better condition. I find this balm very deeply conditioning, so again a little goes a long way otherwise it can get quite sticky.

RED BALM
It annoys me that these balms don't have names, red balm is such a boring thing to write. Again like the peachy coloured one, it has a tint to it so it's pretty limited to being a lip and cheek tint. I haven't tried this on my cheeks as I feel red is not a colour that works for me as I spend my life trying to get rid of my red cheeks. It's very pigmented though so makes a gorgeous lip balm, but if you apply too much it looks tacky, so applying lightly and building it up is keep.

The only thing I would change about these balms is the packaging, I really struggle to get product out some days and it's such a shame because it really puts me off using them, but they're so handy to have in your bag! 

What's your favourite multi purpose balm?

HOW TO BALANCE BLOGGING WITH LIFE

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I admit, this is something I haven't been particularly good at. My blog has been all over the place completely and quite frankly I've wanted to give up so many times due to a lack of motivation and time, but I'm back and I'm sharing the tips that helped me focus on work and my blog equally, without letting either one slack.

TIPS
  • Always carry a way of taking notes, I find the notes app on my phone great but always transfer everything into my handwritten notes book when I get the chance. I like to see things in my own handwriting, it inspires me to write it more, is that just me?
  • Bulk take photos, even if you don't plan to post something for a few weeks, take photos of it. If there's a slight chance you may review it, or you want to feature it on your blog snap some photos of it, it will save time in the long run
  • Schedule tweets, I know everyone would love to be able to be active on Twitter 24/7 but the reality is it's impossible, there is no harm in scheduling tweets to bring traffic to your blog whilst your offline
  • Do not worry if you have to take a break, it's healthy, it's natural, do not overwork yourself.
  • Bulk write blog posts and schedule them, when you have time to sit down and write a few blog posts do it, don't say you'll write it another day because it never happens and you fall in a hole.
  • Do not force yourself to write something for the sake of getting a post up, it's not worth it.
  • Plan blog posts in advance, make a spreadsheet, jot them down in a diary, planning in advance will stop you from panicking because you know exactly what needs to go up everyday
  • Having a set blogging time/day can help get you into a routine, incorporating it into your everyday life.
  • Try to blog in a different place to where you work if possible, being in an area where you work can have a reverse effect on your motivation, causing blogging to slack, this obviously reserves to work in a different place to where you blog as I know it's so easy to want to check your blog whilst working and then 3 hours have gone by...
  •  If you catch a train or bus to work, try and blog on the go. I catch trains a lot and this is where I get most of my blogging done nowadays as a lot of trains have wifi now which is great!
  • If blogging gets too much, try to reduce the amount of days you post a week, it can really help.
These tips finally got me out of my bloggers block and helped me sort a schedule! I hope they're helpful for you too.

BRAND FOCUS: SMASHBOX

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Smashbox are a brand that I was introduced to by the blogging world. Before I started blogging if you'd have mentioned Smashbox to me I probably wouldn't have even know who they were, I wasn't into higher end brands because I could find everything I thought I ever needed on the high street. Blogging has taught me that money isn't everything at all, and the price of something does not determine it's quality, but some higher end makeup is worth the splurge. Smashbox is a brand that I have loved every item of makeup I have tried by them, I'm yet to be disappointed.

My favourite products so far are definitely the primers. I have tried the Photo Finish Primer and the Colour Correcting Photo Finish Primer and then both create a base for makeup to sit flawlessly, and then keep it there all day and way into the night too. Another of my favourites is one of their lipsticks, I recieved a sample of it at a blog event and I am so in love, it's the perfect pink. That's coming from a girl who doesn't wear pink. It's one of the Be Legendary Lipsticks in Posy Pink I cannot get enough of this lipstick; it stays on all day, it isn't drying and it looks amazing on the lips with one swipe. I picked up one of their Halo Long Wear Blushes too, it's a very bright pink which is the only thing I'm not sure on as I suit more coral blushes, but the formulation is great and it lasts all day without a need for a touch up, they're very pigmented so a light hand is definitely key!

There are so many products that I want to try from Smashbox, I spend my life swatching their eyeshadow palettes whenever I pop into Boots. Next up on my list to buy is the Full Exposure Palette, everyone raves about it so I may just have to give in to the hype, the colours are beautiful so that definitely justifies it. Other than that, I would love to pick up one of their foundations, I'm not 100% sure on which one to pick up so I may have to pop in and see what the girls at the counter say, you never know I may come out with more than one.. 

I will forever be repurchasing my Smashbox primers as nothing compares to them at all, I hope that I pick up a foundation I like to match.

What's your favourite Smashbox product?


5 MINUTE PAMPER

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The weather has been a bit hit and miss over the past few days, but one day was extremely cold which makes me so sad because it's supposed to be summer! This cold weather made me excited for autumn though, which means I'm closer to pulling out my thick coats and dark lipsticks. I am so done with summer this year, give me autumn now please. As it got cold I decided to give myself a real deep treatment pamper, but a quick version as I'm extremely busy at the moment.

HAIR
My favourite hair treatment has to be Revlon UNIQ ONE Coconut Hair Treatment*,this is by far the best thing I've ever used on my hair. I admit it I'm not a massive fan of looking after my hair. I dyed it one too many times when I went through the stage of having to dye it every colour, so now I've just left it to grow out. This spray makes my hair so silky soft, like I've never dyed it before, it really brings my hair back to life. It's quick and easy to use and you just spray on, massage and leave it in, which is great when you're in a rush. It doesn't leave hair greasy at all and it leaves it smelling amazing. 

SKIN
At the moment I have been loving Hotel Chocolat Ti Jardin Body Butter* which I believe is from their 2014 range as I can't find a link to it anywhere, which sucks! This is a great deep conditioning moisturiser, as it's a butter form it takes longer to dry than a lotion, but it works wonders on the skin.  My skin feels hydrated and smooth for days after using this, I especially love using it on my legs as body butter always makes legs look better, or is that just my imagination? Obviously it smells incredible, what do you expect from Hotel Chocolat? 

My favourite hand cream has to be Vaseline's Intensive Care Healthy Hands and Nails Cream. As I work with horses my nails are always breaking and my hands are dry as hell, I use a hand cream daily, but I prefer to keep this for my pampering days. It strengthens nails whilst moisturising your hands, which kills two birds with one stone! 

LIPS
My lips are so unbelieavbly dry all year round, it's something I can never seem to solve, but I do try and keep on top of it as much as I can. First I get rid of the dry flaky dead skin using Lush's Bubblegum Lip Scrub, so many people have mixed thoughts on lip scrubs but I absolutely love them, it's the only thing I find that helps my lips from being flaky all the time. I apply Bee Good's Vanilla and Honey Lip Balm* to prevent them from drying out instantly. This lip balm is quite thick and it really deep conditions which I love because I actually feel like it's doing something, it also smells and tastes pretty good too.

FACE
To pamper my face I like to cleanse, exfoliate and the apply a face mask. My favourite cleanser at the moment is Ark Skincare's Age Protect Cleanser* which is something I'll be reviewing fully very soon, but on first impressions it leaves skin feeling clean and fresh. To exfoliate I use either Lush's Rub Rub Rub or Lush's Ocean Salt, both are great as face scrubs and leave skin smooth and ready to face mask! I use whatever face masks I have at home, but they're usually from Lush too, do you see a trend? Lush are fab. My favourite is Catastrophe Cosmetic.

How often do you get the chance to pamper?

*PR sample sent for review but all opinions are my own.

I LOVE... MANGO AND PAPAYA COLLECTION

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Everytime I've ever walked into Superdrug I've probably walked out with one thing from this brand. I Love... were my all time favourite bath brand until I discovered Lush, but that's because of all the pretty bath bombs so can you blame me? I still come to I Love... for all my bubble baths, so when I saw the Mango and Papaya Collection I knew that I wanted it. This scent is absolutely gorgeous, I love mangoes so much, the scent is extremely fresh and fruity. It's a great pick me up in the mornings.

My most used of the set has definitely been the Mango and Papaya Bubble Bath and Shower Creme*, what can I say, I love my baths. This creates a bath full of bubbles which are so creamy on the skin, it makes the water so soft and calming. It also smells absolutely amazing, the scent takes forever to wear off.

The Mango and Papaya Shower Smoothie Scrub* is great for gently exfoliating the skin and getting rid of any horrible rough patches. I am in love with this for when I have shower, it makes my skin so smooth and the little scrubby bits aren't harsh on the skin at all. 

I've been using the Mango and Papaya Body Lotion* when I jump out of the bath or shower especially, to just touch up on the scent a bit whilst moisturising my skin. It's not my favourite lotion, but I love adding to the scent that I've already got instead of mixing it up. It makes skin feel hydrated without feeling sticky at all and it dries very quickly so you're not waiting around ages before you can get dressed.

I am awful at washing my hands, I know that sounds awful, like of course I wash them but I never really throughly wash them as I never have anything at my sink that I like using on my hands so they always just get a quick rinse. This Mango and Papaya Hand Wash* has changed that so much, this leaves hands soft with no drying at all, as I find some hand washes are drying on the skin. 

As I work at a horse yard constantly working with my hands they get pretty rough to be honest, it's quite gross. The Mango and Papaya Hand Lotion* has been my lifesaver, I've popped it in my bag so that everytime I go in my bag I remember to use it and it has worked wonders. It works deep into the skin quickly leaving them feeling silky smooth and smelling like paradise.

There is also a Body Butter and Body Spritzer in the collection that I cannot wait to get my hands on!

Have you tried an I Love... collection, if so which one?

*PR Sample sent for review.

MAKEUP REVOLUTION CORRECTOR PALETTE

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Makeup Revolution Colour Correcting Ultra Base Palette Review

Makeup Revolution Colour Correcting Ultra Base Palette Swatches

I'll admit it, when this first dropped through my door I was terrified to use it. I would have never imagined that making myself look like a colourful piece of artwork before I apply my foundation would have such an impact on how my makeup looks. Once again Makeup Revolution are killing it with their releases; this Ultra Base Corrector Palette* is something that has pretty much changed my makeup routine forever. The palette contains 8 creamy and blendable colour correcting shades for all complexions, to aid balancing skin tone and discolourations.

I have red cheeks, or they seem to progress in redness throughout the day and nothing has worked very well to cover them all day, but this palette has finally changed that. Applying the green shade to my cheeks and any other red blemishes has worked wonders and helped me stop looking like a bit of a hot mess throughout the day. 

This palette is one of the creamiest palettes I've ever used, the pigmentation is incredible too. Less is more is definitely the key to this palette, I'm always scared my skin will be pigmented the colours that I've applied so I like to apply a little bit and build it up. Foundation applies evenly and blends perfectly on top of the correcting base colours. I have tried applying the creams and blending them in with my foundation and that works well to create a flawless base. I'd recommend using a small foundation brush to apply the creams to the skin, and then using a beauty blender to buff them into the skin.

My favourite colours to use apart from the green are the cream, brown, white and orange. The cream and orange are great for hiding dark circles, and they blend together to create a mix of neutralising blue and purple tones. I have been using the brown shade as a contour shade recently as I'm quite pale and it's very buildable, I'd never used a cream contour product before but it's so easy to use and I've found it so much better than powder. It blends flawlessly and gives a natural contour. The white shade is a gorgeous shimmery highlight that I love to run along the top of my cheekbones, this shade can be applied before or after foundation, depending on how visible you want the highlight. 

Here's a list of the functions of each colour:
  • Brown - balances ashiness in medium to dark tones
  • Cream - neutralises purple and covers dark areas
  • White - adds natural highlight and brightens
  • Peach - helps to balance out slight discolouration 
  • Orange - neutralises blue tones
  • Green - neutralises redness
  • Lavender - neutralises yellow tones
  • Pink - brightens

What do you think of colour correcting products? What's your favourite?

*PR sample sent for review, but all opinions are my own.

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