There's a mixture of everything in this months favourites: makeup, skincare and haircare. Included, are a few products renowned in the beauty world, that I've only recently got round to picking up.
After years of using paddle brushes on a daily basis, I finally got round to picking up a Tangle Teezer. I loved it so much, that just a week or so later, I went and picked up another. Now, there is always one in my bag, but I also have one at home, too.
I'm not quite sure what it is that makes these brushes so much better than regular brushes, but they are. If you have long hair that get tangled easily, you have to check these brushes out! They're small and don't have an annoying, long handle that gets in the way and takes up too much room in a handbag. Although there's no handle, it's easy to grip and fits into the hand easily. Made entirely of plastic, including the bristles, it's light and durable. Having a mixture of both longer and shorter bristles, they work together to gently detangle the hair with every stroke. I find that I get significantly less breakages when I use one of these. No pain or tugging. Of course, on the odd occasion, there are some knots, but they are much easier to get rid of, without making them worse. Overall, brushing my long hair is so much quicker and isn't a chore. Not only that, but the quality of my hair will be better in the long run. Some of the plastic prongs can bend slightly if you are a bit too vigorous, so go gently. No, this product isn't one to use to style, such as creating volume, like a round, barrel brush, but for detangling hair and general brushing through, it's perfect.
Tangle Teezers come in a range of colours and have a variety of different products, such as one specifically for wet hair. Though, I personally find that the original version works well on both dry and wet locks. Price wise, they fall between cheap and expensive, but I so recommend them.
In my Current Morning Skincare Routine post, I mentioned my love for the Indeed Labs Eyesilix eye rescue, which is great. However, after suffering an allergic reaction to a product a couple of days ago, that just wasn't creamy and soothing enough, even for the daytime. So, I turned to my evening eye cream of choice, the No7 Protect & Perfect Eye Cream, which is richer and more hydrating. Usually, I find this too heavy for daytime (it causes my concealer to crease) and leave it to work some magic overnight instead, but since my eyes have been so dry and irritated, this was perfect. In just a couple of days, my eyes were back to normal.
No7 received a surge of interest in their Protect & Perfect line, when it was clinically proven that the intense serum actually reduced wrinkles. Bearing this in mind, I thought I'd give it a try. No, I don't have any wrinkles yet, but prevention is better than cure and whether it actually works or not, I was after a nourishing eye cream. Seeing as it's an anti-aging formula, it is wonderfully hydrating, plumping the delicate skin around my eyes, without creating any puffiness. I'm sure that there's a hint of shimmer within the formula, which helps to brighten the eye area, without being too obvious. Whether or not it banishes those crows feet, I can't say, as I don't have any, just yet.
This is cheaper than most eye creams that I've tried, but I do still think that it is quite pricey for a drugstore version. However, it does last a very long time, you can squeeze out every last drop and you only need the smallest amount per application. If you are more mature or have dry skin around the eyes, I'm sure you'll love this!
For those who have a problem with smudging underneath the eyes, Clinique's Bottom Lash Mascara is perfect. Personally, I never really get that, but I do find it difficult to properly define my lower lashes, with regular sized mascara wands. After months of forgetting to buy it, I suddenly remembered whilst my Mum was purchasing some skincare at a Clinique counter, at the end of January. I have used it every day since; nothing else will be gracing my lower lashes again!
The tiny, tapered wand allows you to coat the full length of the lashes, rather than just the tips, without leaving any mess on the skin. You can easily reach those fine, shorter lashes right towards the inner corners, which really makes a difference to how open the eyes look. The formula is long wearing and with my watery eyes, it passes the test and sticks around, rather than disappearing and leaving a black trail down my cheek. Clinique suggest using this mascara first, before a popping a regular mascara over the top, but I find that this works well enough on its own. When it comes to removing it, I find that it comes off best with an oil-based eye makeup remover or cleanser, without any need to rub at the eyes too much.
This mascara is so tiny and cute, but this could mean that it runs out or dries up quickly. I'll definitely be keeping an eye on that and will keep you posted. The packaging is beautiful, with a delicate, silver pattern adorning the tube. For £11, I think this is a great product for those who have longer bottom lashes, that they want to emphasise. However, you are paying this on top of your usual mascara as well, so this bumps up the cost when repurchasing eye makeup. It may be annoying having to carry around and use two, separate mascaras, but this one is so small that it isn't too annoying. The results also make it totally worthwhile, for me. I'm surprised that other brands haven't followed Clinique's lead and brought out their own take on the bottom lash mascara, yet!
La Roche-Posay's Effaclar Duo has cropped up a lot lately, but I've been using it on and off for a couple of years. Initially, when I bought it, I didn't really feel that it worked too well and it remained at the bottom of my skincare drawer for a few months. Then, during a random rummage around one day, I decided to give it another try and a fairer chance. Ever since, when my skin has been acting up, I've included this in my morning skincare routine.
Being more of a gel formula, than a cream, it is very light and quite watery in consistency. You need to shake this before squeezing any out, as it can separate a little. As it is so light in texture, non-greasy and leaves a matte finish, I don't find it to be hydrating enough, so I follow with a moisturiser after it, instead of using it in place of one. However, if you have oily skin, then the Effaclar Duo may work well for you, on its own. Four active ingredients, including an LHA (which is similar to Salicylic Acid), that gently exfoliates and decreases the amount of bacteria within pores. Basically, this product helps to unclog pores, treat and reduce imperfections, whilst also preventing new blemishes from occurring. Non comedogenic, it won't cause blackheads to form and doesn't overload the skin. Formulated with La Roche-Posay thermal water, it isn't irritating, but gentle and soothing. The treatment has a slight, fresh fragrance, but I think it is all natural. Rather than being an immediate treatment, I feel that it works better long-term and if you suffer from more severe breakouts, this will need continued use to keep them at bay and give a healthy complexion. I only use this during the daytime, as I prefer to use other products at night, but the Effaclar Duo can be used both morning and night.
The no frills packaging is very typical of French skincare, being plain and clinical. Having a thin nozzle tip, there is no waste and you get just the right amount of gel for each application. At £13, I think this is priced just right and the 40ml tube lasts a good length of time. Also, it is often on offer both online and in drugstores, such as Boots.
|YSL Glossy Stain 03 Brun Cachemire Swatch|
YSL products just scream luxury and the Glossy Stains are no different. But, whilst I absolutely adore the formula, I don't get the same wow factor from their outer casing, which feels significantly less high end, compared with the intricate, weighted packaging of the Rouge Voluptes. That aside, I cannot fault them and I have reached for the shade 03 so much throughout February. This is a brown-mauve, which is a mid-tone, brown nude on my lips. It looks extremely purple both in the bottle and on the wand, but that doesn't translate onto my lips when worn, at all.
First off, when applied, they feel so silky and smooth. A lipstick/gloss hybrid, they are super shiny, but also have strong pigmentation. It does seem that the product oxidises and gets slightly deeper in colour after a while, so you may want to swatch these at a counter and wait to see how it turns out, before purchasing. They smell amazing, too, but it isn't a smell that I can describe. You'll have to go and have a sniff, yourself! Lasting a good six hours at least, they are a lip product that you don't need to worry about and are perfect for a night out or a busy day, when you want to look a bit special. Once on, I've topped this up without a mirror and it's looked fine. The glossiness eventually wanes, but a strong stain remains on the lips. Like with most lip products, how long it lasts all depends on what you do when wearing it (eating/drinking, smooching etc). If anything, I wish that the formula wasn't as long lasting, just so I could have the pleasure of applying it to my lips more often. Unlike other lip stains, lips aren't left dry, but if you want the glossiness to remain, then you will need to top it up. Some people comment on the fact that the formula can look a bit patchy, but I personally haven't found this. However, if that is the case for you, then applying more than one coat will help.
The soft, uniquely shaped applicator fits the lip shape well, making it easy to apply. As I said, the packaging is a bit of a let down, but it's still nicer than most. The small window in the tube allows you to see which shade it is, without the need to check the label, which is handy. Of course, being a YSL baby, these glossy stains weren't destined to be cheap. Retailing at £23.50, they may be an extravagant purchase and out of some people's price range, but I genuinely feel that they are worth it.
Which products were you loving in February? Tried any of the products mentioned in this post?