Day to Night: Topshop Cap Sleeve Dress

Saturday, 29 December 2012

I really enjoyed doing the imaginary online shopping for my virtual Christmas Party post and that got me thinking about doing more. I wouldn't say I am a particularly fashionable person - I just wear what I find comfortable and what suits me - but I like putting outfits together, so I thought I might give this 'Day to Night' feature a go. As a student on a budget, I had to be wise with my money and learnt to buy staple pieces of clothing that were versatile enough to be worn again and again (Because although we'd all love to wear an outfit only once, who really has the money to continually buy new outfits for every event?). All of the outfits in this feature will centre around one item and will cost less than £100.

As Christmas has just passed and new year is approaching, that generally means spending more money than any other time during the rest of the year, I was thinking of how you can buy some staple items in your wardrobe and wear them to a number of events, during the day and night. For today's 'Day to Night', Topshop's Cap Sleeve Flippy Dress in Bottle Green is the item that will be worn from day to night. I love these dresses, as they are super versatile, come in a great range of colours, can be worn all year round and are flattering to pretty much every body shape. Although the bottle green shade is reminiscent of my secondary school days, I think it's a perfect winter shade and perfect for the holiday season.
I am a big fan of cardigans, whether they are chunky or fitted. This cream chunky New Look knit (£17.99) is the perfect juxtaposition against the more fitted form of the dress and would look lovely worn open and slightly oversized. The black accessories complement the cream and green hues perfectly. The shopper from Zara (£19.99) is a steal and is the perfect size whether you use it for work, shopping, uni/college. Classic black flats are great for day time and these shoes from Boohoo (£20.00) are gorgeous. The leopard's face detail is lovely and adds a bit of extra pizzazz to the outfit. The silver heart earrings from River Island (£3.00) and black snood from H&M (£6.99) are some cute finishing touches to this day look. 

For this night out look, this River Island necklace (£12.00) is a nice statement piece, which will jazz up this plain dress. The great thing about this dress is that it gives you free reign with how you want to accessorize it. The H&M box clutch (£19.99) is lovely and is just big enough to hold your essentials, but not too small that you can't put anything in. These cut-out shoes from New Look (£19.99) are on my to-buy list, as although they're fairly plain, they've got the lovely cut out detail and look more expensive than they actually are. To finish off this outfit, a fur stole such as this one from H&M (£6.99 in the sale) and a slick of red lipstick (e.g. Rio Rio by Topshop £8) are perfect and glam for the wintery nights ahead.

How would you pair this Topshop dress? What do you think of this feature?

Thanks for reading. xoxo, Joy

(Images from Topshop, Boohoo, H&M, New Look, River Island)

Merry Christmas!

Monday, 24 December 2012

I just wanted to wish you all a MERRY CHRISTMAS!

I hope you all have a fantastic day with your friends and family, eating your weight in food and being spoilt rotten by Santa.

I'm sorry that I haven't been posting as frequently as I would have liked to recently, but the past few weeks have been filled with graduation, illness, moving back home and seeing friends and family. Thank you all for your support and kind comments throughout the past year. I really appreciate it and it really means a lot to me.

Lots of love, Joy xoxo

All images from Tumblr.

Christmas Wishlist

Thursday, 13 December 2012

As Christmas is drawing close now, I thought I'd share the things that I have on my Christmas wishlist. There is a mix of things that I have wanted for ages but never got round to buying and things that I've heard good things about and would like to try.

I have heard countless good things about Diptyque candles, but couldn't bear to part with that much money for a candle. This set of mini candles seems like a nice way to be introduced into the world of Diptyque and has three of their most popular scents.

I have wanted a MAC 266 brush for absolutely ages. I tend to use pencil to fill in my eyebrows, but like the natural finish that using eyeshadow can give. This brush seems like the one that everybody on Youtube uses to fill in their brows, so I don't think you can really go wrong there.

My hair has never been voluminous or particularly thick, but recently it's been feeling like it's thinning a little. I've heard lots of good reviews about the Nioxin system and when I had my haircut a few weeks ago, the hairdresser also mentioned it, so I thought this Nioxin set would be good to try.

MAC makeup is always on my wishlist. Recently I have been wanting to try their Mineralize Skinfinish in Soft and Gentle, as it looks like such a pretty highlight which would be lovely for dull skin days during the winter and their lipstick in Rebel, which my friend was wearing when I had dinner with a few friends recently and it looked like a lovely pinky-purple currant colour, perfect for these wintery months.

After Corrie did a review and a 'How I style my hair' video on Youtube with these Enrapture Extremity Heated Rollers, I thought that they would be perfect for my fine and flat hair. I'm not brilliant at doing my hair, but they seem so easy to use and give a fantastic result.

Every time I go into House of Fraser or Selfridges, I always stop by the Laura Mercier counter and take a sniff at their bath products. I'm not fussy about my body moisturisers and tend to buy anything that's on offer, but I absolutely love the Creme de pistache scent and would love to try this luxurious Creme de pistache souffle body creme.

Lastly, I have been wanting to buy this Skin79 BB Cream, which I have wanted since I reviewed it here. It's a perfect, easy day-to-day base product and is really affordable.

What are you wishing for this Christmas?

Thanks for reading. xoxo, Joy

(Image credit: Google, Diptyque, MAC Cosmetics and House of Fraser)

Review: Origins Out of Trouble Mask

Monday, 10 December 2012

I bought this Origins mask on a whim back in the summer, as my skin was going crazy and breaking out like mad. I try to use this once or twice as week and more often if my skin is feeling greasy, spotty or particularly lacklustre. As with all the Origins products I've tried, I have not been disappointed with this.

It has a very strong camphor smell, which I think is down to each individual whether they like it or not. This mask will last for ages, as a little bit goes a long way. If you choose to apply a thick layer, I find it almost feels a little cold on the skin. Imagine the kind of breath you take when it's really cold outside and you almost suck in through your teeth - It feels a bit like that... (I hope you know what I'm talking about!). The mask applies white and dries on the skin, but doesn't go hard like a clay mask and doesn't feel uncomfortable on the skin. I tend to leave this on for about 20 minutes and then wash it off with a muslin cloth. It's easy to rinse off and after use, my skin feels fresh and soft. Initially I don't find much change to any of the blemishes on my skin, but I feel like the blemishes do clear up a little overnight (I tend to use the mask in the evening) and my skin looks a lot clearer the next day. I also like to put this localised over any big whopping spots to try to dry them out overnight and it works a treat at helping to minimise them.

Have you ever tried this mask?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

Virtual Christmas Party

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Last year, I did a post about a high street and high end outfit that I'd wear to an imaginary glitz and glam Christmas party if I was invited to one. I forgot to include jewellery last year, but this time I'm going all out and you're all invited to join me.

For my high street option, I picked this simple black dress from Warehouse (£55), as you can't go wrong with a little black dress and I liked the faux leather panel detail on the front. I decided to keep the rest of the outfit fairly simple to go along with the dress, focussing on a gold and black theme with a dash of festive red. The bag (£22.99) and shoes (£34.99) are from Missguided and I love how the gold studs 'pop' on the bag and the criss cross detail on the shoes. Tying in with the red sole of the heels, I thought the nails should be a bright classic red, such as Revlon's Red Carpet nail polish (£7.99). The earrings and bangles are from New Look (£6.99) and Forever 21 (£4.90) respectively and they were kept quite simple as I think the dress should be the focus and I think the whole look would be complete with a messy updo.
Total Outfit Price: £132.86

I had a lot of fun picking out this high end outfit! I chose this gorgeous embellished dress by 3.1 Philip Lim (£850), as I think it has the right amount of glam and is absolutely gorgeous. As the dress is quite the statement piece, I thought the accessories should be kept quite plain. It would have been difficult to match everything to the teal sequins, so the accessories were matched with the black portions of the dress. The clutch is a gorgeous box clutch by Alexander McQueen (£745). While it's fairly plain, it has the wow factor with the skull on the latch. I felt that open toe heels would go better with this dress and it seemed only right that a pair of classic YSL Tribute shoes (£565) were thrown into the mix. Again, the jewellery was kept fairly simple with a YSL Arty Ring (£180) and Kenneth J Lane drop earrings (£155). Glamourous big waves and a lick of Dior's 2012 Christmas collection nail polish in Lady (£20) would be the perfect finishing touches to this outfit.
Total Outfit Price: £2515!

Are you going to a Christmas party? What would you wear to it if you could buy anything? If any of you do a virtual Christmas party outfit post, please link it in the comments and I will check it out!

Thanks for reading. xoxo, Joy

(Images taken from Google, Warehouse, Missguided, Forever 21, New Look, Boots, Net-a-Porter and Selfridges)

Review: La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo

Monday, 3 December 2012

La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo is everything I wanted LRP Effaclar K to be. I'd heard lots of people rave about LRP Effaclar K, but unfortunately it didn't work too well for me. Effaclar Duo, however, has become one of my favourite acne treatments.

Effaclar Duo has helped to reduce any blemishes I have and has also helped me to keep them at bay. It is recommended to use it AM and PM, but I only use it in the evening. This really helps to reduce the size of spots overnight and I like to use a thin layer all over my face and then a thicker layer over my most troublesome areas or the biggest spots. My skin has been much clearer recently and I am putting it down to this product.

The consistency is very similar to LRP Effaclar K. It's light and blends into the skin easily. It doesn't really have a scent, which is good for those with sensitive skin. The tube is made of plastic rather than metal, which I prefer as metal tubes can get tiny holes in them easily and I like that there is a nozzle, so it's nice and hygienic.

I would compare this product to Avene Triacneal, which I also love, but Effaclar Duo would be the gentler little sister. I like Triacneal for spot treating (haha, excuse the pun!) particular blemishes, as I find it more effective that way, however Effaclar Duo is great to use all over the face, almost like a moisturiser and is also great for spot treating particular blemishes.

I bought some back ups as my current tube is almost finished. The Effaclar range is currently on offer in Boots where you can buy 2 products for £15 - This is a serious bargain as one tube is normally £13.

Have you ever used La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

November Favourites 2012

Sunday, 2 December 2012

This month, I have been loving a number of products. I uploaded my favourites video to Youtube and I think this may have been one of my longest videos. I have also forgotten to include a few items in the photo above that were in my favourites video. Oops.

I have been enjoying using a lighter base over November and my favourites were Origins Vitazing and YSL Le Teint Touche Eclat Foundation. Although the Origins Vitazing is very sheer, it adds a nice healthy bit of colour and leaves my skin looking even once a bit of concealer is thrown into the mix. The YSL foundation is lovely. With 2 layers, I feel like my skin looks glowy, dewy and healthy. I like to set my base with Collection 2000 Sheer Loose Powder (not pictured), as it leaves the skin looking mattified but not chalky or cakey.

I have been wearing eyeshadow more often lately. I love using NYX Walnut all over the lid with Urban Decay's Naked (not pictured) in the crease, as they add a bit of definition without being too dark and dramatic for day time.

For lips, I have been using the Eve Lom Kiss Mix lip balm a lot. It's a lovely minty lip balm, which is glossy enough to pass as a lip gloss and keeps my lips feeling moisturised and soft. I have still been loving the MUA Lipstick in Shade 11 and I have also been enjoying using the Body Shop Lip and Cheek Stain, as it adds a lovely pink tint to the lips which stays on for ages.

Ten's Instant Lifting Cream has been my favourite moisturiser of choice for the past few months. It has helped balance my oiliness and dry patches and has left my skin feeling so soft. La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo is a godsend and helps to keep my skin clear. I have a more in depth review of that coming.

I have been loving this Radox Shower Gel in Brazilian Fusion. It kind of has a unisex scent, which is slightly musky but also a little fruity. It foams up nicely and doesn't leave my skin feeling dry or tight. Lastly, I have been loving this L'Oreal Everstrong conditioner. I love the herbally smell and the conditioner has left my hair feeling so soft and less frizzy.

What were you loving throughout November?

Thanks for reading. xoxo, Joy

Project Empties #19

Friday, 30 November 2012

This month I have been focusing on working through the stash of sample size products that I have. I was saving them for occasions where I travel and need smaller size products, however I haven't got any travel plans for the near future, so it made sense to use them.

Of the products that I finished this month, I would repurchase the L'Occitane Essential Oils 3 Shower Gel, which I really liked the scent of, even though it isn't a scent I would usually go for. It has a mix of mint, pine and rosemary essential oils in and smells like a lovely mix of them and almost has a citrusy twist to it. I would also repurchase the Boots Vitamin E facial oil. I have a review of the Superdrug one here, but it also applies to the Boots one as they are basically the same thing. The Superdrug Aqua Hydrating Serum is another product that I would buy again, as it left my skin feeling soft and hydrated all day long. It has a light-weight consistency and sinks into the skin really quickly.

I'm undecided about whether or not I would repurchase the Lancome Bi-Facil Eye Makeup Remover, as it did a fairly good job at removing my eye makeup. However I don't usually like oily makeup removers, as they tend to leave an oil residue. The Avene Redness Relief Moisturiser is another product I'm unsure about. It has a rather plasticky smell, which I didn't really like and at first I didn't think it had much of an effect on my skin. However, after about 10 minutes, the redness in my skin did look decreased and my skin looked evened out, but on a day to day basis, I don't have the time to wait 10 minutes for my moisturiser to sink in and even out any redness. I can't really remember the scent of Thierry Mugler Alien, as I finished the sample at the beginning of the month. It's definitely a scent that I wouldn't have chosen straight away, as I tend to opt for sweeter perfumes. However, as far as I can remember, I grew to like it but unfortunately the sample ran out once I had changed my mind! I'll have to go and have a sniff at this next time I'm out shopping to see whether or not I actually like it.

I wouldn't repurchase the Clinique All About Eyes eye cream. I got this free with Glamour magazine a while back and when I first started using it, I really enjoyed it and bought a few back ups. Now, I'm not sure about it as I don't feel like it really did much.

What have you finished this month?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

Review: YSL Le Teint Touche Eclat Foundation

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

I bought the YSL Le Teint Touche Eclat foundation on a complete whim. Debenhams had 10% off and I had £5 to spend on my beauty points card, so I bought it. I never do that when it comes to makeup purchases, especially high end makeup, as I usually read reviews extensively before deciding to buy something.

I have the shade BD20. The SA originally matched me to B40, but I eventually decided that it was too dark. BD20 is a perfect match for my NC15 skin.

This foundation has a light-medium coverage. It is definitely buildable, as I like to use 2 layers and it gives a flawless, dewy finish. It has a fresh, almost cucumbery smell which is pleasant and not overpowering. Even though my skin is a little drier now that it's coming into the winter months, it doesn't cling to any dry patches. I like to powder down the centre of my face and I find it lasts fairly well on my skin and fades evenly. I get a little shine on my forehead by lunchtime, but that's nothing a little powder or blotting paper can't fix. I occasionally mixing it with a little MAC Studio Fix Fluid and I find it gives a nice balance between dewy and matte and helps the lasting power.

If you would like to see what it looks like on the skin, I was wearing it in my recent Autumn face and outfit post and my new glasses post.

Have you ever tried this foundation?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

Autumn Face and Outfit

Monday, 19 November 2012

After my last FOTD, I decided to try to post them more so you can see what products I am using frequently, as I review products that I try but there are some staples that I have never actually reviewed that are part of my everyday arsenal. This FOTD also leads into my next post, which will be a review of the foundation I am wearing.

YSL Le Teint Touche Eclat Foundation
Benefit It Stick
Benefit Dallas

Eyes and eyebrows:
Urban Decay Halfbaked (all over the lid)
Collection 2000 Extreme 24hr Felt Tip Liner
Soap and Glory Thick & Fast Mascara
Rimmel Professional Eyebrow Pencil in Black/Brown

MUA Lipstick Shade 1

I also wore black tights (Primark), black ballet pumps (Topshop), my trench coat (Michael Kors) and a big woolly scarf (Zara) - not pictured, sorry.

This kind of outfit has become one of my Autumn wardrobe staples. It's very simple, but super comfortable and it means I can transition some of my summery bottoms into the Autumn/Winter months. I have at least 4 floral skirts that I wear to death during the summer months, but I feel they go to waste a little during the colder months, so I have been pairing them with a cozy knit, a pair of opaque black tights and a chunky scarf and I really like the way it looks.

What has been your Autumn/Winter staple?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy


Friday, 16 November 2012

I recently did a drugstore makeup swap with Jawharah (Youtube: JawharahS2), who lives in the USA and I was so excited when I received my parcel last week. I absolutely love everything that she bought for me and I thought I'd share pictures and swatches of the products I received!

From L-R: Wet n Wild Heather Silk, Wet n Wild Mellow Wine, Wet n Wild Pearlescent Pink, NYX Taupe, NYX Mocha

From L-R: NYX Walnut, Wet n Wild Lust Palette, NYX Peach Bronze

From L-R: Wet n Wild Spiked with Rum (I love that name!), Wet n Wild Just Peachy

I absolutely love everything and I'm so excited to play around with all the products! You can check out Jawharah's video of the things I got her here.

Have any of you ever done an international swap?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

New Glasses

Monday, 12 November 2012

I have been after a new pair of glasses for a while now. I've had my Chanel pair, which I wear every day, for almost 5 years now and I fancied a bit of a change. I posted about a bargain pair that I bought in January (here), but I have to admit I barely wear those as I think they make my face/cheeks look even rounder than it already is! I bought this Anna Sui pair from for a bargainous price of approximately £40 (£29.95 for the frame, £10-ish for the lenses and £2.50 for 2nd class recorded postage), as they were in the sale. Although they're very similar to my Chanel glasses, I was a little undecided about them at first, as they felt quite tight and I wasn't sure if they were too narrow for my face. Now that I've worn them more, I really like them and I love the little butterfly detail on the arms.

Do you wear glasses? Where are your glasses from?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

*Bought with my own money

Favourite Lipsticks Of The Moment

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

MUA Lipstick shade 11 and shade 1

Top: One swipe of MUA Lipstick Shade 11, Bottom: One swipe of MUA Lipstick Shade 1

Top: MUA Lipstick Shade 11, Bottom: MUA Lipstick Shade 1

Recently I have been really enjoying using two lipsticks by MUA. They're brilliant for only £1 and they're comparable to some of my high end lipsticks. If you're sceptical about the brand only costing £1, then seriously don't be. The quality of the products speak for themselves.

Shade 11 is my favourite go-to neutral lipstick. This is your typical 'my lips but better' colour and it is one of my most worn lipsticks. I think that this would suit everybody and it's the perfect everyday lip colour. With one layer, it is fairly sheer and reminds me of the texture of Chanel Rouge Coco Shine Lipsticks. But I find two layers is perfect for optimum opacity and colour.

I have been wearing Shade 1 a lot too. I am generally quite scared of wearing bright or dark colours on my lips, but recently this colour has been calling out to me. I wear it as either a typical lipstick or dabbed on the lips as a stain and it looks lovely either way! It's a really pigmented colour, which is fully opaque in one layer. I don't wear a lip liner underneath it and I find that it lasts for hours and doesn't feather or spread around my face.

Have you ever tried any MUA lipsticks?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

Jewellery Quarter Exploration

Saturday, 3 November 2012

I had a day off yesterday and decided to go and explore the Jewellery Quarter in Birmingham. I've lived in the Jewellery Quarter for almost a year and a half, but have never actually ventured into the main area before.

There were reams and reams of jewellery stores and it would be shopper's heaven if you were looking for an engagement ring or wedding bands. As I was wrapping up my explorations, I spotted the Pen Room. I remember reading about it in first year when we wanted cheap things to do during the weekends, so I decided to pop in. I know this wouldn't be the first place of choice for most people (my flatmates in first year laughed at me when I suggested going there...), but I actually find history interesting and I'm glad I went in. I was told about the history of the pen trade, which was big in Birmingham in the 1800s and shown the machines that they would have used by Patrick, one of the volunteers. He even let me have a go and I got to make a pen nib. And then another volunteer, Keith, taught me about braille and even spelt out my name for me, which was really cool. Then I went through to the other room and was shown the displays by Linda.

Yesterday was something a bit different from just going into town for a mooch around the shops or just slobbing around in my pyjamas on my days off and I had a lovely time. I'd definitely recommend popping in if you're ever in the Jewellery Quarter. I just thought I'd share a few photos with you:

I'm definitely going to try to go to more museums and exhibitions from now on. I'm gutted that I won't be able to see the Chanel Little Black Jacket exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery, as I think it finishes tomorrow. Does anyone have any recommendations for things to do/see in either London or Birmingham?

Thanks for reading. xoxo, Joy

Project Empties #18

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Aussie 3 Minute Miracle
Review: I absolutely love this! It smells gorgeous and leaves my hair feeling so soft. I also never found that this weighed my hair down. I like using this as a normal conditioner or occasionally leaving it on for a few hours as an intensive mask.
Would I repurchase? Yes

Oilatum Natural Repair Face Cream
Review: Here
Would I repurchase? Yes! It is perfect for the upcoming winter months.

Molton Brown Shower Gel
Review: This wouldn't usually be a scent that I would pick myself, but I won this in Leanne's giveaway and started to use it once my previous shower gel had run out. Although I wouldn't have picked this scent, I really like it and may now be converted from the sweet smelling shower gels I normally opt for. This product lathered well and left my skin feeling clean, soft and not dried out.
Would I repurchase? Yes

Max Factor Masterpiece Max Mascara
Review: This mascara is brilliant. This makes me eyelashes look so long. It doesn't give much volume, but I'm seriously impressed with how much length it gives. I have watery eyes and I have never found this to smudge on me, even though it's not the waterproof version.
Would I repurchase? Yes

L'Oreal True Match Powder
Review: I have repurchased this many times as I like the powder. It doesn't leave me looking cakey and helps mattify my face throughout the day.
Would I repurchase? Yes

Collection 2000 Extreme 24 Hour Felt Tip Liner
Review: This is my holy grail eyeliner. I have repurchased this so many times and will continue to! It's a brilliant pigmented eyeliner for only £2.99. One downfall is that it dries out fairly quickly, but I do use it everyday and it lasts me long enough, so I'm not going to grumble about that.
Would I repurchase? Already have!

What have you finished this month?

Thanks for reading. xoxo, Joy

NOTD: Tour de Finance

Monday, 29 October 2012

Essie Tour de Finance is a typical Barbie pink. It's a hot pink with a light shimmer to it, although it dries to a non-glossy, almost matte colour. It has the new wide brush, which is perfect and one of my favourite types of brushes now. The formula was a dream to work with, as with all the Essie polishes I have tried. It was opaque in one coat. I probably could have done with two, but I couldn't be bothered (oops). It has lasted well on my nails and remained chip-free for the few days before I changed the colour.

1 coat of Essie nail polish in Tour de Finance

I definitely want to invest in more Essie polishes. Do any of you have any colour recommendations?

xoxo, Joy

Tommy Hilfiger brings Charity and Fashion Together

Friday, 19 October 2012

For the sixth consecutive year, Tommy Hilfiger is partnering with Breast Health International to raise awareness and funds for women who are fighting breast cancer. The bag, modelled by Charlotte Gainsbourg, is true to Tommy Hilfiger's style and is made up of his staple navy blue, red and white, with a twist of rose gold.

The photos and video were shot by none other than Drew Barrymore. Who knew she was so multitalented? In the video, Charlotte reads a poem which was written especially for this initiative, that is very moving and the video can be viewed below:

The bag is already available now in select Tommy Hilfiger stores in Europe, the United Stated, Canada and the Asia Pacific region and £80 from the sale of each limited edition bag will be directly donated to the Fund for Living, a global BHI initiative that provides assistance to women with breast cancer and their families by covering costs that may not be covered by traditional health insurance programs. It can also be bought online here.

xoxo, Joy

*This is a collaborative post. All words and opinions are my own.

Diet Coke Style Showdown

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

In association with Clothes Show Live, Diet Coke has organized a competition on Instagram called 'The Diet Coke Style Showdown'. If you are an Instagram user, Diet Coke wants you to upload a photo of what you think is your most catwalk-worthy look and tag it with #DietCokeCSL. All entries will be pulled onto the Diet Coke fashion site and the Clothes Show Live site. There will be a winner for each theme: Fashionista, Rock chick and Romantic and you could be in for a chance of winning VIP tickets to Clothes Show Live this December, a goody bag, a stay in a top hotel and on top of all that, you could see your outfit being re-created on the Diet Coke catwalk at the show! The competition started on October 15 and runs until November 23, 2012.

For all of you Birmingham ladies, there will be a Diet Coke Style Spotter in Birmingham on October 26 to scout out the most fashionable people and Instagram them for the competition, so you'd better get started thinking about your outfits and be in town on that day!

Good luck everyone!

xoxo, Joy

*This is a collaborative post. All words and opinions are my own.

NOTD: Frozen Yoghurt

Monday, 15 October 2012

3 coats of MUA nail varnish in 'Frozn Yoghurt' and 1 coat of Models Own 'Disco Mix' on the ring finger

I picked up this nail polish from MUA for a mere £1! It's a pretty midtone purple, with a kind of cornflower blue-esque quality. I found that it was mostly opaque after 2 coats, but had a few streaks. So I did 3 coats in total to even it out and I was left with this beaut. The brush is super thin and I found the short length and wide lid a little difficult and annoying to manage. I decided to put Models Own 'Disco Mix' onto my ring finger as I thought it would jazz it up a little and I think the colours of the glitters are very Autumnal. I have a small dent in the polish on that nail, as I touched it by accident before it had fully dried. Grr. I was impressed with the longevity of the nail polish, as after 4 days there were still no chips. I'm seriously impressed, especially since this cost me a measly £1!

Have you ever used any MUA nail polishes before?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

Review: Xen Tan Dark Lotion

Friday, 12 October 2012

In a bid to get rid of this Autumn gloominess, I have started fake tanning more frequently. I bought this mini deluxe sample from Xen Tan for £3.99 as I wanted to try the much raved about brand, but couldn't bear to commit to the hefty £30+ price tag as I don't use fake tan often enough.

I found this very easy to use. As a fake tanning amateur, I liked that there was a guide colour and you could easily see where you had missed. The lotion has a marzipan type smell, which was nice as I absolutely hate the biscuity smell of fake tan. The lotion dried quickly and I was in my pyjamas about 5 minutes after I had done the fake tan. Straight away, I could tell that my skin was a lovely olive colour and when I woke up the next day, my skin looked bronzed and natural with no orange or streaks in sight. There was also no sign of the biscuity fake tan smell either, which was brilliant. I find this lasts on my skin about 5-6 days before I need to reapply and I will definitely purchase a full size tube when I'm done with this small one.

What fake tan do you use?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

Review: Elemis Brighten & Resurface Cleansing Duo

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

The Tri-Enzyme Resurfacing Facial Wash has fast become one of my favourite cleansers. It's got a creamy consistency, but is not as thick as most traditional cream cleansers. It has a lovely fruity smell and foams slightly on contact with water. I have found that this works a treat with my Clarisonic, as it foams enough to spread it around my face but not too much that it goes up my nose! I thought this would be my saving grace with regards to post acne hyperpigmentation. It has helped to fade the marks faster than if they were left alone, however it isn't a quick fix. My skin always feel soft after use and it doesn't leave my skin feeling dried out. I have noticed that my skin now looks brighter and more even and I would attribute this change to this cleanser.

The Soothing Apricot Toner is a pleasant toner, but to be honest I don't use it that much as I always forget to use it. It has a very strong apricot smell, which may not be great for people with sensitive skin. The spray is very generous and I find that spraying it onto a cotton pad means less wastage.

Have you ever tried these products?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

September Favourites 2012

Friday, 5 October 2012

I'm really sorry my September Favourites are a little late! Usually when I post my monthly favourites on here, I tend to upload a picture and link you to my Youtube channel as I do a monthly favourites video every month. I was thinking about this recently and I kind of felt bad for just posting a picture and then linking to a video, as most people aren't too interested in watching my Youtube videos. So I have decided to write a summary in the blogpost about the products I love each month:

I never thought I would say this, but I have been enjoying using this Revlon Matte blush in 'Perfectly Peach'. When I first bought and swatched it, I couldn't get over how unpigmented it was and it got relegated to the back of my makeup drawers. Recently I dug it out again in a bid to use it up and I discovered that with the right brush (I use the ELF stipple brush), it leaves a lovely natural looking peachy pink flush to the cheeks. It is a matte blush, but somehow adds a pretty glow to the cheeks. It lasts really well too, which is great.

I have been alternating between the Revlon Matte blush and Benefit Dallas this month. Dallas is a gorgeous red-toned blush, which is a bit like a mix between a bronzer and a blush. I used to wear this every single day and kind of forgot about it. But I'm glad I rediscovered this! It gives such a lovely colour on the cheeks and has a slight shimmer, which isn't obvious but gives a nice glow. I have a blog post (from over 2 years ago!) where I show a dupe of Dallas, so if you're interested then check it out here.

I finished my can of Batiste Original in the middle of the month and picked up the Batiste Tropical version. I definitely prefer this as it smells amazing (coconuts!) and doesn't leave that unsightly white residue on my hair, like the Original did. It gives my hair a boost of life when it's looking a little worse for wear on my second day and I have been using it more often than before.

I neglected my Clarisonic when I went home for the summer and I have been loving using it again this month. I took apart the brush head to make it better for precision cleaning around my nose and cheeks after watching Nur's video on Youtube (here). I feel like my pores look much clearer now that I've started using this again and my skin in general also looks clearer and more even. I have been loving using it with the Elemis Tri-Enzyme Resurfacing Facial Wash, as it is a lovely cleanser that leaves my skin feeling soft and looking brighter. I am going to post a more in depth review soon, which I will link when it's live.

If you watch my monthly favourites videos on Youtube, you will know I always include a random favourite of the month. This month, I have been loving these Links of London style friendship bracelets. I have been lusting after a Links of London friendship bracelet for a while now, but couldn't justify the £150-ish price tag. My mum kindly bought these dupes for me when she went to China. I love the look of the bracelets, as they're a nice twist on a traditional thread friendship bracelet and look great dressed up or down. I have been wearing the red and pink one pretty much every day since I got them and I have found it goes with everything. They look great stacked with other bracelets and on their own.

What were you loving in September?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy

Review: Skin 79 Super+ BB Cream

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Over the summer, I bought some mini 5g samples of the Skin79 BB cream, as I wanted to see what the BB hype was all about and I found that a lot of the Western ones were too dark for my skin tone. I have been using this gold Super + BB Whitening one on days where I don't fancy wearing foundation or just want a quick and easy base and have been loving it.

When first squeezed out, the BB cream looks very grey and on my first use, my initial thought was "there's no way this is going to blend into my skin!". However it blends really nice into the skin and I found it to be a great colour match. I didn't include a before picture (as I didn't want to scare you all away!), but you can see on the picture on left that the BB cream has provided a low coverage base. It has helped to even out my skin tone, but has not concealed the redness on and around my nose and around my eyes or the pigmentation and blemishes around my mouth and on my forehead. You can see from the right picture, that once you get a bit of concealer, powder, etc. on, the skin looks lovely (if I do say so myself...).

This BB cream wears nicely on the skin. It lasts on my combination skin around 7 hours, which is great and doesn't go patchy as it wears away. I do get a little shine across my t-zone, which is easily sorted by powder or blotting.

I am very impressed with this BB cream and will definitely be purchasing a full size version of this.

Have you ever used any Skin 79 BB creams?

Thank you for reading. xoxo, Joy