Christmas Sales Haul

Friday, 30 December 2011

I hit the shops with my mum on Boxing Day and although it was absolutely packed and all civilisation had turned into bargain hunting robots with no manners or people skills, I managed to come away with some lovely buys.

The shop that took most of my money was Topshop. I looked online before we went out and was a little disappointed with the online selection, so I wasn't getting my hopes up. However I found some lovely items in store and now I know the sale items in store are always better than online.

Bunny print shirt dress - £48 reduced to £30
Plum ponte dress - £30 reduced to £20
Leopard print shirt dress - £30 reduced to £18
Stripe top - £18 reduced to £10
(I couldn't find links online for the rest of the items)

I spotted the leopard print dress a while ago, but they didn't have my size. After it disappeared from the shop floor in my local Topshop, I thought I'd seen the last of it... And I couldn't believe my luck when I found the bunny print dress as I think it sold out super quickly when it came out in stores earlier this year. As I was laying out the items to take the picture above, I realised I have a 'type'... Looking through my wardrobe, you would see that I have a penchant for patterned skirts and dresses, stripy tops, and dresses that come in just above the waist. Does anyone else have a type of clothing that they always buy?

Topshop charity bracelet - £2

At the till point in Topshop, I spied this orange cord bracelet with a a silver wishbone charm. Jewellery with wishbones on are my weakness and I knew I had to buy it! The bracelet cost £2 and it was nice to see that £1 goes to charity (Centre Point, to be exact). There were two other designs too - A red cord bracelet with a dainty squirrel (so cute!) and a black cord bracelet with a heart.

I also picked up a few items from Marks and Spencer. M and S isn't a store I tend to shop in, but I thought I'd have a peek as my mum was looking for some work dresses.

Woven blazer - £29.50 reduced to £12.50
Black skinny jeggings - £?? reduced to £7.50!

I have been after a black blazer for ages! I spotted a lovely 3/4 sleeve blazer in Topshop a while back, but at £65, I couldn't bear to part with the money. After spotting this lone blazer on the rack, among a lovely turquoise one of the same style, I knew it was meant to be! My mum actually bought the jeggings for herself, but didn't realise they had zips at the bottom. After proclaiming that she was "too old for the extra zips", I decided to try them on... I have nothing but good things to say about these. They're a thickish material, so they lean more towards jeans than jeggings, they fit like a dream and stay skinny! My pet peeve with jeans is when the sag around the bum or knees and I have worn these every day since buying them (oops) and they're still nice and tight!

Lastly is an item I actually picked up from New Look before Christmas. After Sarah blogged about this skirt, I knew I had to have it!

Tulip sequin mini - £29.99 reduced to £6.50!

The skirt is absolutely beautiful. It has an array of flowers on the front,, with some pretty beading along the scallops.

Did you pick up any bargains in the sales?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

Project Empties #8

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Hey everyone! I hope you all had an amazing Christmas and I hope Santa got you everything you wanted! :D

Today I have a few finished products to share with you. I've realised that I hardly ever have any finished make-up to show! So I really need to make more of an active effort to start working through my collection as I am trying to downsize. Let's hope there are some more make-up items in my next Project Empties post!

Avene Extremely Gentle Cleanser
Review: To be honest, this cleanser isn't really anything special. However I really liked it! It's super gentle, which was great for times when my skin was feeling delicate or when I broke out and it is pretty effective at removing make-up. I like that it's scentless and you get a generous amount of product for £8 or so.
Would I repurchase? Yes

Clarisonic Gentle Hydro Cleanser
Review: This had a strong cucumbery scent, which I didn't like and I didn't like the texture of it either. I liked that it was nice and gentle, so it's perfect for sensitive skin. It worked well with my Clarisonic, however I used it a few times on its own and didn't find that it was a particularly great cleanser. It didn't dry out my skin and left it feeling clean and soft. 
 Would I repurchase? No

No7 Radiance Revealed Exfoliator
Review: Here
Would I repurchase? Yes

Clean&Clear Shine Control Daily Facial Moisturiser 
Review: This moisturiser was a bit pants to be honest. It claims to help control shine, but I found that it made no difference. It is a light moisturiser, which I sometimes felt wasn't moisturising enough. It has a lovely citrus and zingy scent, which is nice for the mornings. 
Would I repurchase? No

Boots Witch Hazel
Review: I've been using this witch hazel as a toner or as part of my DIY toner. It's a great size bottle for only £2-ish and it has lasted me ages.
Would I repurchase? Yes

Clearasil Overnight Serum 
Review: I bought this on a whim, as I was looking at in Boots (for £7-something) and then saw it for sale in none other than Poundland! It made no difference whatsoever on my breakouts and I'm glad I only paid £1 for this. 
Would I repurchase? No

Next Diamonds
Review: This is supposedly a dupe of Dior's 'Miss Dior Cherie'. I'm not sure if it is, but it is a lovely sweet and girlie perfume. I thought it was a perfect scent for summer, so wore it loads through the summer and autumn months, before recently transitioning to a heavier scent (Chanel 'Coco Mademoiselle', in case you're wondering). I had this for approximately a year and a half and noticed that the scent changed a little as I neared the end of the bottle, so I would advise to get through this quickly if you do purchase it. It's a great price at only £6 for 30ml!
Would I repurchase? Yes

L'Oreal Voluminous
Review: Here
Would I repurchase? Yes 
  Finished Products: 8
Accumulative Finished Items from December 2010 to December 2011: 40!
What have you finished up recently? Thanks for reading. xoxo, Joy

It's Christmas Eve...

Saturday, 24 December 2011

So I just wanted to wish you all a...


I hope you all have amazing times with your family/friends/whoever you're spending the day with! And I hope Santa brings you everything you want ;)

Thank you all for being here with me throughout this past year, whether you've been a follower for a long time or short time. I really appreciate every single one of you and am so grateful.

Lots of love, Joy xoxo

All images from Tumblr.

MUA Heaven & Earth Palette

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

I picked up this Make Up Academy Heaven & Earth Palette last week from my local Superdrug after months and months of pondering, "Should I, Shouldn't I?". After seeing a tonne of rave reviews on numerous blogs and constantly seeing that it was sold out in Superdrug, you know you're onto a winner so I nipped into Superdrug and bought this without a second thought.

I'm so glad I finally bought it, because the colours are so gorgeous and pigmented! Some of the shades are more pigmented than others and there is a little fallout on application, but you seriously cannot fault this palette. I can't believe this palette only cost £4! My favourites are number 3, 4 and 6 on the top row (going from left to right).

 Above: In natural daylight, Below: With flash

 In natural daylight

With flash

If I was being picky, the only downside of this palette is that all the colours are shimmery. I would have loved some matte shades thrown in, like in the Naked Palette. But that is a minor issue and I love this palette!

Do any of you own this palette? What are your favourite neutral palettes?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

T-Zone Dilemmas

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Hi everyone, I was wondering if I could ask you for some advice, please?

I have combination skin, where I have dry cheeks/nose and a rather oily t-zone. Currently I'm using Collection 2000 Sheer Loose Powder to set my foundation, but it is not living up to expectations. I get shine after a few hours and my make-up doesn't stay in place long enough :( So I am asking you ladies, what is the best setting powder and mattifying powder you have used? Or any products that help to keep your t-zone matte? I would love some recommendations, please!

Here are some virtual Christmas cupcakes in return for your help :)

Image: Bakerella

xoxo, Joy

Current Favourites

Saturday, 17 December 2011

I didn't do a November favourites, because I was using pretty much the same make-up throughout November as October and I didn't see the point on posting the same favourites. But recently, I've been loving some new products so I thought I'd share them with you by doing a quick video.

What are you loving at the moment?

Thank you for watching. xoxo, Joy

Review: Vitamin E Sink-In Moisture Mask

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

What they say: (From Sink some antioxidant Vitamin E into your skin. Bring skin back to optimum moisture level with this intensely hydrating mask.

Price: £12.00


What I think: On the website, they recommend applying a thin layer and leaving for 10 minutes, before removing it or leaving it on overnight for an intensive moisturising treatment. Personally I don't see the point of applying it and wiping it off again, so I've been using this as a night moisturiser for the wintery weather. I've been really liking it, as it leaves your skin feeling soft and non-greasy the next morning. When I first bought this, I applied large amounts to my face and it left my skin feeling tacky and sticky for a while and almost made my face feel like it was stinging a little. You literally need a pea size amount, and that is more than enough to leave your face with a thin, moisturising layer.

It smells clean and fresh, without having an over powering scent. The texture of this mask is quite hard to describe. I'd say it's a gel-like, wibbly texture (I don't know if that makes any sense, but hopefully the pictures in this post illustrate what I'm on about...!). I initially didn't like the texture, as it's quite unlike any other moisturisers I've tried, but the more I used it, the more I got used to it.

This mask is also great for other parts of the body. If my skin is feeling extra dry, I use this like a normal moisturiser and slather it onto my skin.

I would recommend this for people with dry skin. I have an oily t-zone and it hasn't made me break out or get an oilier. You get a generous 100ml in the tub, which I think will last ages. I haven't tried The Body Shop Vitamin E night moisturiser, but I assume that this would be more moisturising. So if you're considering the night moisturiser, maybe give this a go as the night moisturiser comes in at £10 for 50ml and this is £12 for 100ml, which is great value for money as you get double the amount of product for £2 extra.

I got an Origins Intensive Mask in the Origins gift set from Bicester (mentioned here), which I think is a similar product to this, so I'll definitely be using that soon and maybe comparing the two.

Have you ever tried this product or any other intensive moisturising product?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

Christmas Wishlist

Friday, 9 December 2011

As Christmas is looming closer and closer (14 more sleeps!), I thought I'd share my ultimate Christmas wishlist. A few things are things I need, e.g. new glasses as the plastic on my Chanel ones are falling apart a little after having them for 4 years and new replacement heads for my Clarisonic, while some things are a little out there e.g. the Black Milk leggings or a little extortionate e.g. the iPhone and Mulberry Alexa. But like I said this is my ultimate wishlist, which is irrespective of how realistic life is.

Clockwise from left:
Purple Galaxy Leggings (
iPhone (
Clarisonic Brush Heads (
Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish (
OPI Rainbow Connection (
Mulberry Alexa (
Ray-Ban Glasses (

What have you asked for for Christmas? What would be on your ultimate wishlist?

xoxo, Joy

4 Week, No Heat Review

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

In October I decided to attempt the 4 Week, No Heat Challenge. It's been just over a month now, so I thought I'd do a quick update and give you my thoughts on the challenge.

I have been enjoying not needing to dedicate up to 20 minutes for styling my hair. This means more time in bed! I tend to wash my hair at night and have recently been going to bed while it is still a little damp and in a loose bun. The next morning, this gives me nice natural looking waves, which I just run a little serum through and I'm good to go. I usually wear my hair straight every day, but I'm really enjoying having wavy hair and in my past experience, as my hair grows, my natural wave becomes more pronounced. But for now I will continue cheating (by wearing it in a loose bun while damp).

I feel like my hair feels stronger and fuller, but I still get a lot of fall out, especially when I'm running conditioner through my hair or when brushing it. My natural hair gets frizzy much easier than when styled, so I found slicking a little serum through my hair helped to tame it.

The picture below shows the change in length. As you can see, there hasn't been a drastic change in the length of my hair, but it definitely feels healthier and I have noticed fewer split ends.

Left - Before (Air dried), Right - After (Slept in a loose bun)

I have decided that I will try to persevere with this challenge. I will try to avoid heat altogether, but there are occasions where I will still use it every so often. I am glad I tried this and would definitely recommend it if your hair is feeling a little damaged from heat.

Have any of you tried the 4 Week, No Heat Challenge? How did you get on with it?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

Virtual Christmas Party

Monday, 5 December 2011

I don't actually have a Christmas party to go to, but I have been virtual shopping for one! I love that you can completely over the top with the glitter, glitz and glamour at Christmas and nobody would bat an eyelid! My picks are quite reserved, but I love the colours and glamour of the outfits. I completely forgot to pick jewellery and I didn't pick jackets either, because who really wear jackets when they're all dolled up and going out? If the celebrities can brave the cold for premieres, why can't virtual me?!

Firstly I have my high street picks with items from Miss Selfridge, ASOS and Aldo. I absolutely adore the colour of the dress and I have been lusting after an asymmetric dress like this for ages. I think the gold clutch and gold accent of the shoes match perfectly with the rich tone of the teal, while the accent of black on the shoes means it isn't gold overload.

Dress - Miss Selfridge (£39), Clutch - ASOS (£45), Shoes - Aldo (£80)
Total = £164

Now onto the fun part! I decided to select a few items from high end, out-of-my-price-range designers. I may have had a little too much fun picking these as it made me feel like Tamara Ecclestone, hehe! (Did anyone else watch 'Tamara Ecclestone: Billion Dollar Girl'?). The dress is a beautiful red, which ties in nicely with Christmas. I love the subtle diagonal pattern on the dress, which (I assume) would be slimming. The Charlotte Olympia shoes are absolutely to die for! It was a hard toss up between these and the Paloma ones! I think the Bottega Veneta clutch finishes off the outfit nicely, as a black clutch may have been too matchy-matchy with the shoes, while the cream sticks with the neutral theme and I find ivory goes lovely with red.

Dress - Adam (£375), Clutch - Bottega Veneta (£890), Shoes - Charlotte Olympia (£608)
Total = £1873!

Are you going to a Christmas Party? What are you wearing to it? What would you buy if you could spend, no expenses spared?

xoxo, Joy

New Bits & Bobs

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Last week I managed to get a MAC Her Blooming Cheek blush and MAC Pink Nouveau lipstick from the lovely Rachel's blog sale. I came home to see a parcel from her and literally ripped it open!

Her Blooming Cheek blush is a gorgeous, highly pigmented pink. It looks scary in the pan, but using a stippling brush to apply it leaves you with a pretty pink cheek. I think this will be a firm favourite this winter! Pink Nouveau is a bright Barbie pink lipstick. I originally didn't think it was very me, but upon trying it on I fell in love with it. I wore it when I went shopping with my mum with a neutral eye and I really liked it! Thank you so much again, Rachel!

Her Blooming Cheek, Pink Nouveau

I have recently been lusting after a dark red/wine lipstick for Autumn/Winter. I was waiting for my friend to get her eyebrows threaded in Superdrug, so I thought it was only right to have a cheeky look down all the make-up aisles! I went a little swatch happy and must have swatched every single dark red lipstick I came across. My hand looked like I had linear measles! After some deliberation, I opted for a red lipstick by MUA which was cheap as chips at only £1! It's a gorgeous red, which is lovely for night and day. It applies like a dream, is super creamy, non-drying and lasts for ages.

I also picked up a matte black eyeshadow (shade 20) as my old one had smashed into smithereens. Like I've said before, the pigmentation of MUA eyeshadows is amazing and they are soft and velvety. MUA has definitely rapidly become one of my favourite affordable brands.

MUA Lipstick Shade 1, MUA Eyeshadow Shade 20

What have you bought recently?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy