Sunday, 31 December 2017

2017 Beauty Favourites

I've had way too much fun putting this post together. I love reading these end-of-year beauty round-ups, so it's no surprise that this has been one of my favourite posts to write.

Let's go over my self-imposed rules. This is a rundown of my overall favourite beauty products of the year - not specifically ones that were released this year or that I discovered this year. There's a mixture of old favourites and newer finds here - whatever I've been using and loving the most. I have, however, refrained from mentioning products I've only discovered close to the end of the year - say, the last two months. Just because there's no telling yet whether they'll stand the test of time.

I don't want to force in products that aren't really my top favourites for the sake of discussing every category, so you may notice a few categories missing. For example, there hasn't been an exfoliator or a mascara I've been particularly loving this year. Hopefully 2018 will be the year I make some game-changing exfoliator and mascara discoveries! But for now, let's talk about my top beauty picks of 2017.

Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water (£4.99)
I've never tried the cult favourite Bioderma micellar water and, thanks to Garnier, I don't feel like I need to. This one removes my makeup with relative ease, is gentle on the skin, and you get 400ml for £4.99. It's great value. It's a great product. It's all I've been using to remove my makeup this year.

REN Rosa Centifolia Cleansing Gel (£15)
If you read my December favourites post, you'll know that a new cleanser has taken pride of place on my bathroom shelf, but for most of the year I was using this fab REN cleanser. It's very light and gentle, non-clogging but non-drying, and smells like roses. Simple but effective, which is exactly how I like my cleansers. I think this would work for just about any skin type.

Lush Tea Tree Water (£9.50)
I've repurchased this handy blemish-buster three times this year, and will undoubtedly stay stocked up throughout the next year too. Breakouts occur far less frequently when this refreshing antibacterial mist is part of my skincare routine.

Vichy Aqualia Thermal Serum (£25)
I've gone through several bottles of this over the past two or three years. It's the most effective hydrating serum I've used, in terms of immediate results. A light layer beneath my moisturiser instantly makes my skin feel quenched and plumped. It also happens to smell lovely. Good if you're into fragrant products. Potentially bad if your skin doesn't respond well to them. Mine has obviously had no negative effects.

Clarins Lotus Face Treatment Oil (£33)
This has been a staple in my routine for years because it combats my skin's oiliness like nothing else. Since my teen years, I've had extremely oily skin to contend with. Extremely oily. Back then, no amount of powder could keep my excess oil at bay for more than half an hour. Incorporating a facial oil into my routine - this one specifically, though I'm sure there are many others that would do the trick - has vastly reduced how greasy I get throughout the day. I'm talking life-changing results.

La Roche-Posay Hydraphase Intense Light (£16.50)
It is a crime that I haven't yet mentioned this moisturiser on my blog, because I've gone through several bottles of it this year. It has a lightweight, lotion-like consistency which doesn't clog my pores or sit on my skin, but still really packs a punch hydration-wise. A complexion like mine - oily but dehydrated and flaky - is difficult to cater to, so finding a moisturiser that can deal with those opposing issues is no mean feat. This one strikes just the right balance.

Pai Copaiba Deep Cleanse AHA Mask (£30)
I've tried a lot of deep-cleansing masks, but none compare to Pai's offering. Its consistency is thinner, lighter and creamier than any other clay mask I've come across, and it's significantly less drying. It's also noticeably more gentle. It effortlessly unclogs pores and sloughs away dead skin cells, without leaving any redness or irritation behind. Just a cleaner, smoother complexion.

Nuxe Reve de Miel Ultra-Nourishing Lip Balm (£9.50)
Thanks to this gem, I can't even remember the last time I had dry, chapped lips. Easily the most nourishing lip balm I've ever used, with the most long-lasting results.

Soap & Glory One Heck of a Blot Primer (£11)
When I'm facing a long day/evening out, this is the primer I tend to reach for. It has a pleasant silky, cream-like consistency, which softly mattifies shiny areas while smoothing over drier ones, and it noticeably prolongs foundation wear-time. My t-zone stays grease-free that little bit longer when this is on my face.

NARS Sheer Glow Foundation (£33)
I've raved about this foundation in my last two posts, so I'll keep it brief. Medium-buildable coverage. Semi-matte finish. Long-wearing. Fantastic shade range. It's the best foundation I've ever tried.

Jouer Matte Moisture Tint (£33)
Back in June, I rediscovered my love for the Matte Moisture Tint when I took it away on holiday with me, then proceeded to wear it every day for the next several months. It has a moussey texture that blends out with ease, and is matte in a very soft, skin-like way. It's also not as sheer as the word 'tint' would lead you to believe - I find it covers up my redness and evens out my complexion nicely, without the need for multiple layers.

NYX HD Studio Photogenic Concealer (£6)
Another product I've repurchased multiple times, this NYX concealer has been a long-term resident of my everyday makeup bag since some time in the first half of the year. It's very lightweight, has a natural skin-like finish, and melts into the skin like nothing else. Approximately two seconds of blending are required. Which I definitely appreciate on work mornings, when I've hit snooze about eight times and have about that many minutes to get ready.

Laura Mercier Loose Setting Powder in 'Translucent' (£29)
2017 was the year I finally gave in to the hype and splurged on Laura Mercier's much-lauded loose setting powder, and I'm happy to say I wasn't disappointed. It mattifies my shiny face without making it look overly powdery or cakey, and really locks my base in place. And if you caught the multiple mentions of my skin's oiliness in this post so far, you may have gathered that locking my base in place is no easy task.

Becca Sunlit Bronzer in 'Bali Sands' (£32)
Okay, I've made one exception in regards to the whole 'no products discovered near the end of the year' rule. I had to because this Becca bronzer has been one of my favourite beauty discoveries of the year. I've used it pretty much every single day since purchasing it a couple of months ago, and it's really reignited my love for bronzer in general. 'Bali Sands' is the perfect pale tan shade for fair skin, and the formula is a joy to work with. Very blendable. Very natural-looking on the skin.

L'Oreal Glam Bronze Cushion De Soleil (£14.99)
One of my favourite summer beauty discoveries was this cushion bronzer. The product is so thin and lightweight - it barely looks like makeup on the skin at all. I loved using this to make my face match my body during my post-holiday tan weeks - both by applying it as you're supposed to apply a bronzer, and mixing it in with my overly pale foundations.

MAC Mineralize Blush in 'Cosmic Force' (£23)
I've been favouring a very subtle blush look this year, and 'Cosmic Force' is as subtle as they come. It's a light, rosy beige nude which adds the barest hint of colour to the cheeks and is impossible to go overboard with. Great for a subtle everyday face. Great for pairing with a bold eye or lip. Great for literally any makeup look.

NARS Blush in 'Tribulation' (£24)
While NARS has labelled this a blush, it's actually more of a highlighter. It's a muted sandy gold with a hint of rosiness, and a beautiful soft sheen. Whatever you want to call it, it has definitely been my most-used cheek product of the year.

Dior Diorskin Nude Air Luminizer in '001' (£39.50)
A pricey highlighter pick, but I don't regret a single penny. The colour of this one is actually very similar to NARS 'Tribulation' - champagney, but in a very muted way, and with a similar hint of rosiness. The main difference is that the Dior one has a stronger, brighter sheen. The shade is very flattering. The texture is very forgiving. It's beautiful.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade (£19)
Picking out my top brow products of the year was easy because I rarely stray from my staples. I'm pretty sure Dipbrow is the only product I've used to fill in my brows this year. I seem to be in the minority here, but I find a pomade with a fine liner brush easier to use than a brow pencil, and Dipbrow is the reigning queen of the pomade world. It's just the right combination of creamy and waxy. It's ultra long-wearing. It comes in a great range of shades. It's the best.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel (£23)
More ABH, because they just do brows right. Their Clear Brow Gel has the setting power of cement, without being overly thick or clumpy or crispy, or having any other undesirable effect on your brows. It simply holds the hairs in place for as long as you want them to stay in place. Definitely worth the splurge.

Benefit Gimme Brow (£20)
As painful as £20 per teeny tiny tube is, I've repeatedly repurchased Gimme Brow because it's just that good. A couple of swipes adds a bit of tint and volume, and makes the brows look that little more groomed - in a very effortless way. Perfect for lazy brow days, or for adding extra fullness to already-filled brows.

Lorac Pro Palette ($44)
Eyeshadow is definitely the category of makeup I switch up the most, and my palette collection is getting a little ridiculous... But when in doubt, I reach for my Lorac Pro Palette. I love the easy-to-wear shade range. I love that it has an equal number of mattes and shimmers. I love the soft, buttery formula. I love everything about this palette. Except for the fact that it isn't available in the UK.

L'Oreal Super Liner Perfect Slim (£6.99)
If, like me, you struggle with liquid liner, give this L'Oreal one a go. I've tested out a fair few and found this one the easiest to use. The nib is fine, precise and just the right amount of flexible, giving you a lot of control over how thick or thin you want your liner to be, and allowing you to create the sharpest of wings.

NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in 'Cruella' (£21)
When I stopped to consider my lipstick picks of the year, I realised there hasn't really been a nude I've loved above all others. There has, however, been two bold lipsticks getting more than their fair share of wear-time, the first being NARS 'Cruella'. It's very matte without being overly drying, it's extra long-wearing, and it's just the perfect, cool, bombshell red.

MAC Lipstick in 'Diva' (£16.50)
I'm a huge fan of dark lipsticks, so 'Diva' is one of many similar burgundies in my collection, but for some reason it's always the one I find myself most drawn to when I feel like going vampy. Partially sentimental reasons maybe - it was my first ever MAC lipstick and, actually, my first vampy lip purchase at all. In any case, it's a beautiful rich burgundy, with a nice balance of warm and cool tones, and I find the formula to be a very comfortable kind of matte.

Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge (£5.99)
I've refrained from listing all of my favourite brushes, because no one wants to read a blog post the size of War and Peace, but I couldn't not mention the Real Techniques sponge. This is the single most important makeup tool in my collection. I use it daily for foundation, concealer and powder. I occasionally use it for cream bronzer, cream blush, cream highlighter - any kind of cream that goes on the face. I couldn't be without it.

Well, that was a post and a half... If you've made it this far, happy new year! And do let me know what your favourite products of 2017 have been!

Friday, 29 December 2017

December 2017 Favourites

I am not ready for December to come to an end, but writing this post is really forcing me to face the fact that Christmas has come and gone, and gloomy January is looming. I did have a couple more festive pre-Christmas posts planned, but found little time in which to write them, and absolutely no free daylight hours in which to take photos for them. So never mind that... What I have managed to put together is a round-up of my top December beauty picks. I've been experimenting with makeup a lot this month, so haven't been using the same group of products day-to-day, but I do have a few steady inhabitants of my makeup bag worth mentioning, and a couple of non-makeup beauty faves.

La Roche-Posay Effaclar Purifying Foaming Gel (£12)
Given my appalling diet this month and the occasional post-party failure to remove my makeup before bed, I have no doubt my complexion would be looking rather grim right now if not for this face wash. I bought it a couple of months ago to tackle a nasty breakout, and wow... I can't stress enough how much it has exceeded my expectations. I've used this every day (morning and night) since late October, and my skin is now looking clearer than it has in years. Years!! I know the word 'foaming' probably has you recoiling in horror, but it's nowhere near as drying as it sounds. It certainly isn't nourishing either, but it doesn't leave my skin feeling tight or stripped. Just clean and fresh. I don't know how well you'd get on with it if your skin's on the drier side but if, like me, you're oily and blemish-prone, I can't recommend it enough. All year, I've had a regular procession of spots popping up on my chin, jawline and other painfully visible areas. Right now, I have zero spots thanks to this gem - just a few slowly fading marks from past blemishes. (I recently purchased the Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser and really want to properly test it out, but I'm now afraid that switching cleanser will mean losing my unusually clear skin!)

NARS Sheer Glow Foundation (£33)
This was the first high-end foundation I ever bought, and several repurchases later, it's still the best one I've ever tried. It's lightweight, easy to blend, has good medium-buildable coverage, and a really flattering semi-matte finish. It holds up well on my oily skin and doesn't cling to my drier, flaky patches. It also comes in a fantastic range of shades; it's one of very few foundations I'm able to buy in my actual skin colour. It just ticks all the boxes. I could go on with this rave, but I think that about conveys why this has been the only foundation on my face this month.

Jouer Powder Highlighter in 'Citrine' (£19)
'Citrine' is a real beauty - probably my favourite makeup discovery of the month. The one you see pictured above is a mini version, as mine came in the limited edition Jouer Powder Highlighter Trio I purchased last month (still available here), but I've listed the price for the full size 'Citrine', which is permanent. To be clear, I love all three of the highlighters in that trio, but I've been reaching for 'Citrine' the most. It's a pale, slightly peachy gold which gives the most beautiful, bright, luminous sheen to the cheeks. The powder is super soft, the shimmer is ultra fine and smooth, and the resulting glow is nothing short of angelic.

Make Up For Ever Pro Light Fusion Highlighter in 'Golden' (£27.50)
On the days I haven't been using the Jouer highlighter, I've been reaching for this MUFE one. I mentioned in my last post that I love a true gold highlighter for a Christmas makeup look and sure enough, this has been by go-to for parties. While the Jouer highlighter has a traditional powder formula, the MUFE one has that silky 'gel-powder' formula that gives a more metallic sheen; the glow can get real intense real fast if you go in with a heavy hand. It gives a very smooth, non-chunky sheen though, is very easy to blend, and meshes with the skin beautifully. The shade 'Golden' is definitely aimed at darker skin tones than mine, but I have no problem applying a sheer layer and blending it in with the rest of my makeup.

NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in 'Cruella' (£21)
I have so many beautiful festive reds in my lipstick collection... But 'Cruella' has been the only one I've wanted to wear this month. I wore this one on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and every other day I attended any kind of festive celebration/activity. It's my number one favourite red lipstick - a cool, slightly deepened, true-matte red which looks effortlessly glamorous, and holds up pretty well through a hearty meal. Every makeup lover needs a lippie like this in their collection for this time of year. In fact, every makeup lover should have this specific one in their collection at all times. It's the crème de la crème of red lipsticks.

The Body Shop Frosted Berries Shower Gel (£5)
Buying at least one thing from The Body Shop's Christmas range has become a bit of a festive tradition for me, and this year I'm loving the Frosted Berries scent. I'm a big fan of perky, fruity scents like this, and as far as shower gels go, The Body Shop ones are pretty darn pleasant. Stepping out of the shower smelling like this is one of those little December daily occurrences that make me think: "Yep, it's Christmas." Like opening the next door on my advent calendar or seeing the latest John Lewis Christmas ad on TV.

What were your beauty faves this month?

Saturday, 16 December 2017

Christmas Party Makeup Picks

Christmas party season is well and truly here, and I'm sure we can all agree that one of the most fun things about Christmas parties is deciding what makeup to wear. Am I right or am I right?

I love taking the opportunity to make the most out of my oversized makeup collection during December, and will be switching up my makeup a fair bit between gatherings. What this post is about to detail, however, is my go-tos and standbys. My tried and true party-proof base faves, and my classic Christmas colour picks. Several of these products have frequented my makeup bag for years, so I know I can rely on them to see me through a night of scoffing festive food and belting out Christmas songs!

A Long-Wearing, Even Base

When I'm Christmas partying, I want to stay looking polished for as long as possible, so I actually bother to prime. I have a few good primers in my stash, but the one I've found does most to keep my excess oil at bay and hold my base in place is the Soap & Glory One Heck of a Blot Primer (£11). It has a silky cream-like texture which softly mattifies the skin without drying it; it actually feels more like a typical hydrating primer than a typical mattifying one.

Ideally, any party makeup look starts with flawless skin. I don't have that, so I use the NARS Sheer Glow Foundation (£33) to fake it. This has been my favourite foundation for years, for all occasions and non-occasions. It gives a good medium coverage which can easily be built to full, has a semi-matte finish that's flattering on a bunch of different skin types, and is impressively long-wearing. Any remaining imperfections, I cover up with the MAC Pro Longwear Concealer (£18), which works well both under the eyes and on blemishes, and, true to its name, sticks around for a good while.

Setting that perfected base with powder is a must, and my current go-to is a dusting of the Laura Mercier Loose Setting Powder in 'Translucent' (£29). This is also a good product for some low-key baking, if I really feel like going all out.

Nude Blush and Golden Highlighter

Festive makeup is all about the eyes and lips, so I keep it subtle when it comes to blush. My go-to nude cheek option is the MAC Mineralize Blush in 'Cosmic Force' (£23), which is as colourless as they come - basically a beige with the barest hint of rosiness. I promise it looks prettier than that description would have you believe. It gives a bit of very understated definition to the cheeks. If I'm feeling like something that's a little more flush-like, but still muted and relatively nude, I tend to go for the MAC Powder Blush in 'Blushbaby' (£18). This one's a natural browny pink, with quite a sheer formula - very easy to wear.

The highlighter department on the other hand, is an area where I amp it up. As far as I'm concerned, glistening golden cheeks are Christmassy cheeks. I like to go full-on true gold, which last year meant the MAC Extra Dimension Skinfinish in 'Whisper of Gilt', but this year I'm putting a dupe to the test. The Make Up For Ever Pro Light Fusion Highlighter in 'Golden' (£27.50) is the latest addition to my highlighter collection, and it looks just as golden and gleaming. On the off chance I feel like toning it down a little, a pale golden-vanilla like the Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed in 'Moonstone' (£32) will do the trick.

Gold/Bronze/Copper Eyes

That's right - there are no groundbreaking ideas to be found in this post. Anything in that warm gold-bronze-copper area of the colour spectrum is an easy go-to during party season. The original Urban Decay Naked Palette (£39.50) is a nice one to have to hand at this time of year, because it has a good selection of those typical Christmas party lid shades. There's 'Half Baked' for that festive yellow-gold eye look, 'Smog' for a more sultry bronze option, and 'Sidecar' if you want something a little cooler but still in that bronzey colour family.

Glitter is a popular party pick, but I don't really do glitter. If I feel like playing up the eyes a little more, I prefer something ultra metallic and shiny, like the Makeup Geek Foiled Eyeshadow Pans (£7.95 each) which look, well, foiled on the lid. 'Grandstand' (a rose gold) and 'Legend' (a true copper) are both beautiful and both have 'Christmas party' written all over them.

Alternatively, if I want my statement lip to be the centre of attention, I go for a bare lid and some copper eyeliner, using the ColourPop Creme Gel Colour in 'Show Me' ($6) and the Zoeva 317 Wing Liner Brush (£7.99). There are two ways I like to wear this. Option one: I create a copper winged liner look, applying it as I would any other gel liner. Option two: I apply regular ol' black winged liner on the upper lash line, and wear the copper one underneath the lower lash line, pulling it out into a wing that mirrors the black wing above. (Is this making sense to anyone but me?! Makeup application descriptions can be a real painful read without accompanying visuals...)

Bold Lips

More often than not, I can't resist topping off a festive makeup look the traditional way: with a red lip. My number one all-time favourite red lipstick is the NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in 'Cruella' (£21), which is a beautiful, classic, deepened red. It's such a glamorous shade and the finish is perfect - a really chic matte, which meshes nicely with the lips, while still looking rich and pigmented.

That being said, there are occasions when I feel like something slightly less bright than a red, but at least as bold. On those days I reach for a burgundy like the MAC Matte Lipstick in 'Diva' (£16.50), or a deep berry like the NYX Full Throttle Lipstick in 'Locked' (£6). Of course, all of the lipsticks I'm mentioning are matte. Christmas parties are all about eating/drinking/non-lipstick-friendly activities, and matte formulas are the only thing that stand half a chance of sticking around for the night. In fact, it's always a good idea to go with a liquid lipstick, which will generally hang in there for the longest (and I don't know why I didn't photograph any for this post...)

A Finishing Spritz

I highly recommend finishing things off with a few spritzes of setting spray before you walk out the door. A good setting spray will significantly prolong the wear-time of everything on your face. At the moment, I'm trying out the L'Oreal Infallible Fixing Mist (£8.99), and I really like it. Just make sure you give this one a vigorous shake before use; it separates in the bottle, and will leave white splogdes on your face if you don't mix it all up before spraying.

What are your go-to Christmas party makeup picks?

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Black Friday Beauty Haul

So the Black Friday sales really unleashed the shopaholic in me... My inbox being flooded with enticing discounts, I couldn't resist taking advantage of the best ones and picking up some items that were at the top of my wishlist.

Now that everything has been delivered, I thought I might as well gather it all into one satisfying pile and blog about it. I haven't properly used any of my purchases yet, and sadly haven't had the time to swatch them for this post, so do let me know if there's anything you'd like to hear more about once I've given it a go. This is really just a look-what-I-bought post.

Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Oil (£22)
I never switch up my skincare routine so this purchase is kind of a big deal. I've been removing my makeup with micellar water for years, and have always been happy with the one I use, but... My skin has been getting increasingly flaky as temperatures drop, and I found myself wondering if rubbing at my face with cotton pads might be exacerbating it. Let's see if switching to an oil for my first cleanse helps!

Jouer Powder Highlighter Trio - Set 1 (£35)
I've been wanting to try out Jouer's powder highlighter formula for a while, but could never decide which shade to go for, so I was excited when I saw the brand had come out with two mini trios for the holidays. I went for Set 1, which includes 'Citrine' (light gold), 'Rose Quartz' (champagne pink) and 'Topaz' (peachy gold) - all shades from the permanent line. All three look beautiful and the mini golden compacts are adorable!

Make Up For Ever Pro Light Fusion Highlighter in 'Golden' (£27.50)
Clearly I didn't need to pick up yet another golden highlighter, but this one looks like a dupe for MAC's 'Whisper of Gilt', and the urge to put it to the test was too strong. Plus, it's Christmastime and I love a true gold highlighter for a festive makeup look. (It's amazing how far the justification 'it's Christmastime!' can take you when you're feeling spendy.)

NARS Blush in 'Madly' (£24)
When I saw that NARS had a 20% off code for Black Friday, it took all the will power I have not to order one of everything. NARS is my favourite makeup brand, and my beauty wishlist is always full of their products. I really didn't need one more NARS blush, but 'Madly' has my name written all over it. I love browny nude blush shades, and this one is a bit more peach-leaning, as opposed to the slightly rosy ones my collection is already full of.

NARS Duo Eyeshadow in 'Kalahari' (£25)
Anyone else own the limited edition NARS And God Created The Woman palette from a few years back? It's one of the most-used palettes in my collection, and my favourite shade from it is 'Kalahari I' - the shade which makes up one half of the permanent 'Kalahari' duo. The other half of the duo looks beautiful too, so I couldn't resist getting my hands on the whole thing while I had the chance to pay a little less for it (£25 is steep for two eyeshadows.) 'Kalahari I' is a taupey bronze and 'Kalahari II' is a plummy shade.

NARS Powermatte Lip Pigment in 'Starwoman' (£23)
The (many) NARS lipsticks I already own are among the best in my (vast) lipstick collection, so I've been quite excited to try out their take on liquid lips since the Powermatte Lip Pigments were released earlier this year. As we're in the midst of the festive season, it seemed only right to opt for a red, so in my basket 'Starwoman' went. This one is a rich, slightly deepened, slightly cool-toned red.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Eye Shadow Singles in 'Amber', 'Chiffon', 'Dusty Rose' and 'Fudge' (£12 each)
If you saw my post about my Makeup Geek shadows, you'll have seen that I have a very big Z Palette waiting to be filled, and I decided to throw some Anastasia shadows into the mix. I've heard great things about the quality, and their shade selection is, frankly, mesmerising. I've picked up four for now, but there are many more on my wishlist. 'Amber' is a warm gold, 'Chiffon' is a kind of dirty-bronze with slight olive undertones, 'Dusty Rose' is actually more of a mauve than a rose, and 'Fudge' is a deep warm brown.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Matte Lipstick in 'Stevie' and 'Brandy' (£18 each)
As soon as I saw Temptalia's swatches of this lipstick range, I was eager to give the formula a whirl, because they actually look matte! So many traditional lipsticks which claim to be matte actually have more of a satin/semi-matte finish, but these have the kind of chic and shine-less look that has truly earned the 'matte' label. And the shade range is fantastic; I felt spoilt for choice! In the end, I settled on 'Stevie' - a muted plum/red hybrid - and 'Brandy' - a dark burgundy. Very typical 'me' colours.

Violet Voss Taupe Notch Palette (£43)
This was the impulse buy of the bunch. Violet Voss is a brand I've never really paid attention to in the past, but I came across the new Taupe Notch Palette while browsing Cult Beauty, and had an instant 'NEED IT' reaction. It contains 20 shades and I actually really like EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM. How often can you say that about an eyeshadow palette? Especially one with that many shades! Here's hoping the quality is as pleasing as the colour selection.

MAC Lipstick in 'Honeylove' (£16.50)
A makeup lover's MAC lipstick collection is never finished - am I right? I basically bought this because it looks like a lighter version of 'Velvet Teddy' (one of my most used MAC lipsticks.) 'Velvet Teddy' is very much a deepened nude against my skin tone, and I thought it would be nice to have something with the same warm tone that's more traditionally nude on me - for when I want a more understated lip.

Quick finishing note: I've obviously listed the products' normal prices rather than the significantly discounted prices I actually paid. So the damage to my bank account wasn't quite as bad as all this. Not quite.

Did you do any beauty shopping in the Black Friday sales? Do you own any of the items I picked up?
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