The Travelling Top Shelf

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How many times have you packed a whole load of beauty products to take on a weekend away, but only ended up using not even half of them? That usually always happens to me, so I learnt to stream-line and truly only take what I will use. 

Although I know I could easily take two skincare items away with me, I'm not that streamlined so I will take options with me. I always find that MV Organics Cream Cleanser is the best travel-friendly cleanser, so good that I'm on my third bottle of the stuff as it's hydrated, great for sensitive skin and is perfect for my skin. Alongside that, a miniature bottle of micellar water is always necessary for the odd stubborn, this time the Caudalie Micellar Cleansing Water which is one of my favourites. At this specific time, my skin was playing up so I made sure to pack both La Roche Posay Serozinc, Pai Lotus and Orange Blossom Toner and Malin & Goetz Salicylic Acid. Those three products are my go-to when my skin is having a mini-breakdown, which always happens around that time of the month. I have been testing out Pestle & Mortar Pure Hyaluronic Acid, which I find is a perfect serum to use underneath my daytime moisturiser, First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream. Whenever I'm travelling, I can't go without Aesop Fabulous Face Oil as it's always my go-to product to use in the morning. My favourite face oil for congested skin, while it stays hydrated & calm. 

Whenever I travel, I always take more skincare than makeup, as I don't tend to wear much day to day so I know it's not going to change when I travel. My base of choice is usually always Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue applied with a Beauty Blender, with the RMS Un-Cover Up Concealer (aka the best concealer ever). I have been playing with the Marc Jacobs Cover(t) Stick in Covert Affairs, which is a green & yellow tinted CC stick which is perfect for reducing redness. I find travelling with a liquid bronzer means I'm able to use for a little bronze, but also all over for a little colour instead of tinted moisturiser. I use a few liquid bronzers, but my favourite as it's so versatile is Benefit Liquid Hoola. For my eyes, I always ensure I have mascara, a champagne shimmer shadow, bronze eyeliner and a tinted brow gel - all of which can take me from day to night very easily. 

Aside from makeup and skincare, I have been reaching for the Soft & Gentle 0% Aluminum Anti-Perspirant and Oribe Apres Beach Wave and Shine Spray. The deodorant is one of it's first in the UK and I can report that it really does stop you sweating, while still being aluminium free, which is amazing!

Berlin in Autumn

I popped over to Germany last week for four days and I completely fell in love with Berlin. Two friends of mine have been living out there since before the summer so my visit was well overdue. Turns out that staying with people who live in the city not only makes the experience better (mainly due to the fact you're not going back to a hotel bar), but you can force those people to play tourist with you. I hadn't been to Germany before, but Berlin has always been at the top of my wanderlust list. Autumn is my favourite season, so I happened to visit at the perfect time. 

Look at the trees! Look at the leaves on the floor! Autumn was in full force, including the crisp breeze which made me require multiple layers at one time. 

An Autumn Wishlist

Autumn is my favourite time of the year, there's no denying that. Although I complain about the cold, I am truly enjoying wearing layers, jumpers, coats and boots! With the new season comes a new urge to buy everything new (I already have purchased enough jumpers to last me the cold month) and I am all about enabling myself. 

Every year when the weather turns colder, I always feel the need to wear a little more colour in my makeup such as more brown in my eyeshadow and a little deeper in the lip colour. I am currently obsessing over the new Jouer Essential Matte Shimmer Eyeshadow palette and RMS Swift Shadows. The Jouer palette has all the shades I'll ever need for the Autumn and I am obsessed with every RMS product so I know I will love their powder shadows even more. My go to eyeshadow at the moment is any of the By Terry Ombre Blackstar sticks and this Christmas gift has my name written all over it! For the lips, I think it's about time I pick up the Lipstick Queen Hello Sailor Lipstick, which is a vibrant blue shade which transfers into the perfect berry for your lips. The tinted By Terry Baume De Rose and Tata Harper Be Adored Lip Treatment are also calling my name for the perfect lip stains, as I'm not into the opaque lipsticks at the moment. Without forgetting about the skin, I'm reaching for masks a lot more recently and the new Tata Harper mask, Honey Blossom Mask, has caught my eye as there's no denying how much I love all their products. For on the go, I'm reaching for the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Diffused Light to counteract any redness with this Morphe brush!

I don't wear too much jewellery or accessories on a daily basis, maybe a ring or two and a watch at the most (with the exception of earrings), but I'm looking out for a few things. I've been looking out for a new watch, particularly a gold one, which I can wear every day and I love this one from Cluse, the Minuit Mesh Gold watch! I've had my eye on the Gold Mini Fang necklace from Missoma for so long now, it's such a beaut and more recently, I have been loving the Gold Claw Studs! I wear my current pair of Bailey Nelson glasses every single day at work and because of that, I'm sick of wearing the same pair every day so I keep looking for a new pair. I love the look of the Parker glasses, a little bigger and squarer than my current pair of glasses. If you're in the market for new glasses, optical or sun, I highly recommend Bailey Nelson as they have so much choice for a low price. As much as I love using a small bag, during the week it's not practical in the slightest and I'm currently eyeing up both the Beauford Medium Grab Bag and the Addison Medium Zip-top Grab Bag from Radley

I love coats in the winter, there's no denying that and I have my eye on this Leopard Faux Fur Collar Coat from Topshop. Despite it having a faux fur collar, I am planning on wearing that coat with a soft pink scarf because I'm lusting after everything pink at the moment. To fake the look of a shirt under a jumper, I love this little number from Monsoon for the warmer days. To cover all thick jumper needs, Barbour is always a go to for me and I'm currently lusting after this Barbour Tynemouth Crew Neck jumper. My favourite trainer brand at the moment is Superga and I have worn two pairs so much that they're ruined inside now, so I'm looking to purchase the Superga 2750 Cobinu Navy which has a fluffy inside for the winter! And because I'm not willing to pay the price of the Chloe boots, I am happy with the Office copies which are hopefully just as good quality. 

Skincare Lately #1

The seasons are changing and my skin is creeping back into its usual dehydrated state, which means I am lapping up the hydration in all products possible. This year, I have been forcing myself to drink so so much water - my technique is that during the work day, I will tell myself at different times of the day to drink a litre of water such as during a conference call or lunch time. 

My skin reacts to the basic skincare products, nothing fancy is going on here but all of these products work so well for me. Someone introduced me to the Avene Redness-Relief Dermo-Cleansing Milk a few months ago and I have been hooked ever since. I have been using this as my morning cleanse and my second evening cleanse nearly every single day, each time using a 50p size amount of product. Straight onto dry or wet skin, it's super gentle and doesn't tug on my skin. I find that it in the morning it calms down my skin which then looks better post-makeup and in the evening calms my skin after removing makeup. It's £15 for 300ml and an absolute bargain which works perfectly for my skin. A few months ago I had a horrible recurring hormonal breakout which for someone who doesn't break out often, was killing my vibe, and I randomly started to use the La Roche Posay Serozinc every-day. I knew it was a hugely hyped up product and didn't expect anything to happen, but a week later my skin was back to normal. I have since asked my sister to stock me up with the largest bottle she could find in a French pharmacy and it hasn't left my skincare routine. 
I enjoy using masks for both five minutes of quiet time and to help my skin out, so I tend to use them quite often. A new addition is the Vichy Instant Glow Double Peeling Mask, which I've found is the nearest to a drugstore version of Tata Harper Resurfacing Mask. Both very similar, it's a resurfacing brightening mask which removes all the dead skin. I leave it on for around 10 minutes, or until the mask darkens in colour, wash off and find my skin is brighter with a smoother texture. The second mask is one of my favourites, Fresh Rose Face Mask, which hydrates and tones the skin. As my skin has the tendency to be quite dry and red, I often choose products if the main ingredients are rose. Fresh masks are so luxurious, as are all of their other products, so they're hard not to love. 

As mentioned above, I am all about the hydration at the moment. I was recently introduced to the Vichy Aqualia Thermal Serum and it's hands down the best serum I have ever used. I know it's a big claim, but the reason why I love it is that there are no frills. It's a hydrating serum which does just that without containing mineral oil. It does contain silicone and fragrance, which usually doesn't work for me, but this really just does. It soothes my skin, perfect for sensitive skin, doesn't affect my bank balance too much and Caroline Hiron approves of it. I've been using two pumps of it morning and night before my moisturiser/oil of choice and I love it. To follow, I have been using both Weleda Almond Soothing Facial Cream in the morning and Weleda Almond Soothing Facial Oil. Both perfect for sensitive dry skin, it calms and protects the skin. I've found that the facial cream acts like a great primer for underneath foundation and it hasn't gone patchy by the end of the day. As for the soothing facial oil, it's a thinner consistency than I'm used to but it smells delicious and keeps my skin supple until the morning. The extra little product I have been using is the Blink Brow Oil. I've heard a few people rave about this before and I've only been using it for a week or so now, so we'll see if I see any difference from it! So far I just have very conditioned eyebrows.