Category Archives: Monthly Favourites

October Favourites

Autumn has been amazing, so far this year! I’m lucky to be spending some weeks at home and each year the season gets more and more beautiful in my city.

However, I haven’t been that fortunate when it comes to my skin. If you’re not aware of my troubles, I’ve been suffering with a bad reaction after using a sunscreen in the summer, I’ve contacted several dermatologists but sadly, with no result. The latest thing I was prescribed was Differin Gel and if you’re familiar with this medication you probably know that the first couple of weeks are the hardest. Right now, my skin is peeling, it’s burning and feels painful even though I’m not applying the gel every night.

So, I’ve been trying to hydrate and calm the skin. The three products that are helping me the most at the moment are this Vichy Mineralising Thermal Water, the Zoya Organic Bulgarian Rosehip Oil and the Dr. Jart+ Water Drop Hydrating Moisturiser. And I use them in this exact order but on an evening when I apply the Differin, I’d use the medication first, then I’d wait around 30 minutes and continue with these three products. The thermal water spray feels very soothing, it’s infused with antioxidants, it calms my skin and the oil applies much easier while the face is still damp. The rosehip oil doesn’t give me a stinging sensation (at the moment many products feel irritating) and not only moisturises my skin but it’s almost like it’s healing it, as well. Since I’ve started using the rosehip oil, my skin feels much less stripped, dry and painful. At first, the Water Drop Hydrating Moisturiser wasn’t helping me much as it was burning a bit but now that my skin is a lot more soothed, I can enjoy the lightweight yet hydrating feeling of it. I need a tiny amount of the product, it looks like a gel but applies almost like water and smells quite nice. If you have dry skin, this wouldn’t be enough for you on its own in the winter but I think it’s lovely if you want to give your regular moisturiser a boost, for example. I have a mini of 30 ml but it’s lasting me a really long time.

I’ve been loving two mascara in the past couple of months. They’re totally different in terms of formulas and brushes but they both give me amazing results, they’re long-wearing and smudge-proof. Lancôme Monsieur Big Mascara* was mentioned here when I reviewed the entire Monsieur Big collection from the brand and since then it’s been my go-to mascara for days when I want full and separated lashes. For me, it’s totally worth the hype and I can already see it as an annual favourite of mine.
This cool dual-chamber packaging of MAC Bold & Bad Lash* actually contains two brushes and two different formulas (full review here) in one tube. With this mascara I can create a really natural everyday-appropriate look or go for a bold effect if I want. The tiny wand for the lower lashes is very precise and even though I don’t usually wear mascara on my bottom lashes, this one made me change that.

The Tom Ford Lipstick in Indian Rose* looks brand new but that’s just because I use the other side of the bullet to apply this beautiful pinky rose shade. This is the perfect lipstick, the colour looks stunning no matter if I’m wearing it in the summer or winter. The texture is quite creamy and I would have never expected such a creamy lipstick to be that long-wearing but it really is. There’s a subtle shimmer running through but surprisingly for me, it makes the lipstick colour even more beautiful. In fact, the shimmer doesn’t show up on my lips, it just makes them look more plump and not flat. I simply adore this lipstick!

These are my favourite beauty items for the month of October and I already have a full box of different products to try in November which makes me really excited. Holiday season is just around the corner, as well, so I’m curious to see all the gift sets and other limited edition releases.

*PR Samples

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September Favourites

The season of warm blankets and cosy knits has just started, so it is probably normal that this month’s beauty favourites post is a mix of summer and autumn bits.

Rituals have some of my favourite bath and body products but their skincare was never something I looked into. My boyfriend knows that I love lip balms and a few weeks ago, he passed by a Rituals store and decided to add the Smooth Operator Lip Balm to my collection. At that time my lips were pretty dry and this was the only lip balm I had with me, so I started using it the same night and I liked it straight away because of the minty feel and smooth texture but I really fell in love with it the next morning. When I woke up, my lips were so soft, smooth and hydrated that I couldn’t quite believe it. The formula contains Shea Butter, Coconut Oil, Jojoba Oil and Eucalyptus and it feels really moisturising and refreshing at the same time. There’s also a lot of product in the bullet and I’m sure it will be an essential for me in the upcoming winter days.

A few weeks ago I shared with you a bit about my skin issues because of the high temperatures in the summer and a sunscreen that probably wasn’t the right one for me. Since then, I’ve been using the La Roche-Posay Anthelios XL SPF 50+ and I really like it. It has a milky texture and feels quite light on the skin. It doesn’t look too shiny on my combination skin and I don’t find it pore-clogging. I’m not sure what took me so long to try it but now I know why the reviews on it are so positive.

Weather’s getting colder and the skin on my body has been feeling quite dry and although Tom Ford Soleil Blanc Body Oil was a summer favourite of mine, I still keep using it. At this point, I like taking a warm shower at night and applying the oil while my skin is still damp. This has made such a difference to its condition and I really don’t want to see this bottle empty because I simply love the product. I’ve done a review on the body oil here, so you can take a look in case it’s interesting for you.

I’m pretty sure this is not the first favourites post where I’m featuring Weleda Skin Food. Most of us already know how amazing it is but I got new tubes for us (my boyfriend and I) and for my family, so this was one of the old ones that I decided to use as foot cream. I’ll usually apply a thick layer of Skin Food and then I’ll put on warm socks and let the cream do its magic. It’s a rich cream as you probably know, so having sticky feet is not the most pleasant feeling but once it’s fully absorbed, you see it was worth it. I also like applying it on my elbows and knuckles, it’s really hydrating and smells very fresh although some people hate the scent.

In this post, I said that I love Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Mood Exposure and I think it’s worth the splurge. Since I got it, it’s been constantly in my makeup bag but I feel like I’ll be using it even more in the autumn and winter months. It’s just a beautiful finely-milled powder, they have a gorgeous selection of shades and they’ve just released their holiday face palette that looks stunning!

I can’t believe we’re already in the last three months of the year, time’s flying and I feel like we’ll be soon talking about Christmas preparations.

August Favourites

This is probably my first monthly favourites post that includes only skincare products! Ok, one of them can be seen as both, skincare and makeup item but as I’m still trying to find a way to bring back my skin to its normal condition, I haven’t been using that much makeup lately.

When you’re not really sure what’s going on with your skin and feel like crying, the key word must be “calming”. I’ve mentioned in my previous blog posts that I had a bad reaction to sunscreen and in addition to that, the high temperatures caused me blocked pores, so I’m dealing with something like a rash/sun allergy and still can’t seem to be able to tackle that. Not even the topical antibiotics have helped, so far.

My skincare has been quite minimal these past few weeks. I don’t want my skin to get even more stressed out and as much as I’d like to use acids a few times a week, the only two I’ve been reaching for are Salicylic Acid and Lactic Acid. To gently exfoliate my skin, I’ve been relying mostly on this budget-friendly Zdrave Acne Stop Enzyme Peeling Mask. Enzymes provide a bit softer and lighter exfoliation but still unclog pores, even out the complexion and remove dead skin cells.  Enzyme exfoliants have anti-inflammatory properties and are suitable even for sensitive skin (not always, sadly but that needs a bit more time to be discussed). This mask contains Papaya and Pineapple Enzymes and soothing ingredients such as D-Panthenol and Vitamin PP. I use it a couple of times a week, it’s very easy, I cleanse my skin and then apply a thin layer of the mask all over my face and neck, avoiding the eye area, leave it on for about 5-10 minutes and then simply wash it off with lukewarm water. My skin feels fresh, soft and smooth afterwards.

In this blog post I shared with you my current favourite soap-free cleansing gels which are both affordable, as well. I love the Avène Cleanance Cleansing Gel for Face and Body (this is a new bottle, I’ve used up a couple already) because it calms my skin, doesn’t leave it feeling tight and I love it as my morning cleanse. It contains Zinc Gluconate to calm the irritation and Avène Thermal Spring Water to soothe my troubled skin. If you have oily/combination and blemish-prone skin, I’d highly recommend giving this one a go.

There a couple of mists that I’m using at the moment as toners but also as facial sprays during the day. The Serozinc from La Roche-Posay is an old favourite of mine, I use it to heal blemishes quicker and to mattify my skin without drying it out. It’s once again soothing and calming and I’m incredibly happy I can now find it in my home country. My love for floral waters is no secret by now but a couple of months ago, I tried the Damascena Juniper Water for the first time in my life. It has a delicate natural scent, it feels very soft on the skin and it tones oily skin, prone to imperfections. I love how refreshing, calming and still purifying it feels. The only downside is the actual spray but these waters seem to always have such harsh sprays, so most of the time, I’d saturate a cotton pad and swipe it all over my face.

I received this miniature Clinique Chubby Stick Moisturising Lip Colour Balm in Super Strawberry as a complimentary gift with a purchase, it’s a very popular product from the brand and I’ve been carrying it around with me all the time. The rosy colour brightens up my face without being too obvious, it’s sheer and has subtle sheen that looks very pretty. The formula is fragrance-free and contains Mango Butter and Shea Butter, it’s really nourishing and soft on the lips. I love Clinique and their lip products and skincare, this is a combination of both and it’s simply amazing.

Simple and soothing, these are the words to describe my August favourites and I’m hoping for better luck with my skin in September. Hope yours is doing muuch better than mine!

July Favourites

July is usually never an exciting month for me when it comes to beauty discoveries. It all seems to be paused, everyone’s on holiday and my routines are quite minimal.

But this year, I had the chance to try many products while I was away in Italy and hopefully, I’ll be sharing more about them in the next few weeks. In this monthly favourites post I’m featuring a couple of these products because I fell in love with them straight away.

One of them is the Pixi Glow Mud Cleanser. I was surprised by the texture of this cleanser, as I was expecting it to be thick and even a bit drying. However, it feels light, at first it looks a bit like a clay mask or some sort of paste but it almost transforms into an oil when in contact with water. It’s purifying but also hydrating and my face feels really smooth and soft afterwards. At the beginning, I was a bit concerned because the formula contains 5% Glycolic Acid and my skin isn’t the biggest fan of this acid but it also has Hyaluronic Acid, Chamomile Extract and Avocado Oil, so the combination of these really seems to work for me at the moment. I’ve been using this mini as a morning cleanse or a second cleanse in the evening. Now I’m thinking about purchasing the full size because it’s not drying at all, feels amazing on the skin and leaves it fresh, clean and nourished.

It is not a secret that I adore floral waters and rose water was the first and only skincare product that I used when I was younger, even before my teenage years. The Alteya Organics Organic Bulgarian White Rose Water made me very curious because I’d never tried white rose water before. Rosa Alba is one of the rearest oil-bearing roses. Compared to rose water from the traditional Rosa Damascena, this one has lighter and a bit more delicate aroma but still has amazing soothing and calming properties, it’s softening and moisturising and rose water will forever be one of my favourite skin treats. It’s very gentle on the skin, it’s suitable for all skin types and can be used as a toner after cleansing, to refresh the skin during the day or after sun exposure, I also love using it when I travel and feel a bit dehydrated. They have different sizes and types of bottles, this is a huge 500 ml one but the little 100 ml spray version is really handy to have in a travel bag.

Origins Flower Fusion Sheet Masks are now some of my favourite sheet masks. There are six types and the ones I keep repurchasing most of the time are the Raspberry (it feels refreshing in a hot summer day) and Lavender (very soothing and calming before bed) ones. Here’s a link to my review on the five I’ve tried, so far.

The only base product I’ve been using in the past weeks has been the Dr. Jart+ Premium Beauty Balm SPF 45. I’ve mentioned in my Simple Summer Makeup blog post that it would be too dark for me in the rest of the year but the shade is great at the moment because I’m tanned. I like that it’s a lightweight BB cream but provides medium coverage, it’s quick and easy to apply and stays on all day.

I reach for This MAC x Steve J & Yoni P Touch Me Baby* eyeshadow duo whenever I don’t have much time or just want a wash of colour that can make me look more fresh and presentable. I love how small and compact the packaging is while still being stable and having magnetic closure. The eyeshadow on the right is the popular Soba that is a wonderful golden brown everyday shade but the frosted light pink Keep on Twinkling (on the left side) is really beautiful for a touch of sparkle. They may not seem compatible when you first look at them in the pan but you’d be surprised what a great pair they actually are.

Leave-in conditioners are my thing and when they’re in a spray form and it’s summer, I can use them all the time. Kérastase Aura Botanica Essence d’Éclat* is a beautiful hair mist that I use on damp hair after washing it or on dry hair to make it look more shiny and soft. It smells lovely and the formula is bi-phased, containing Jojoba, Avocado, Coconut and Argan Oils. I’ve done a blog post on the whole Aura Botanica range and in case you haven’t seen it, here’s a link to it.

There’s a bit of all, skincare, haircare and makeup, in my July beauty favourites, so maybe there will be something for you, as well.

*PR Samples

June Favourites

Waking up in Rome on a special date for me and my family, feeling incredibly tired and excited at the same time, makes me wonder if some days are indeed real.
But when it comes to beauty, I can’t wait for Sephora, KIKO and all the charming little shops they have around here. I’m looking forward to trying new products in July, especially skincare because summer is the time to find items that keep the shine away from my T-zone but without drying out my skin.

However, it’s still June and this is what I’ve been loving the most in the past few weeks.
Last month, I shared with you how much I love spritzing the La Roche-Posay thermal water before applying Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate. I’ve used up the mini of the water I had and went back to an old favourite, Avène Thermal Spring Water. I have several at home and one in my handbag, it’s a must-have in the summer for me. It’s very gentle and feels incredibly soothing, I love how cooling it is after sun exposure and how hydrated my skin feels afterwards. The mist is so fine and a true pleasure to use. The thermal water can be used on irritations, rashes, sunburn and it’s great to have a bottle of it. I don’t use it as a toner but just to freshen up and hydrate the skin throughout the day or before applying facial oils so that they spread evenly and work their magic even better.

The Eucerin DermoPURIFYER Active Concentrate is not a new product for me and I’ve featured it several times in favourites posts. I’ve gone through so many bottles of it and I will keep repurchasing. If there is one product that can keep my combination skin blemish-free in the summer, leaving it hydrated, soft and luminous, it must be this lightweight milky serum. It absorbs almost instantly and you don’t really feel it but you start seeing results a few days later. I don’t hear people talking about it but it’s worth having a look at it if you have similar skin type.

The last few weeks have been time for trying to find a good face or face and body sunscreen in a spray form. But they’re just too oily for my face. Bioderma MAX SPF 50+ aerosol spray is supposed to be completely transparent and without the need to be applied with hands and patted onto the skin. First of all, the spray has visible yellow tint and second, you can’t just spray it on the skin and leave it there, you need to spread it evenly using hands. I don’t really think these are negatives, just the promises aren’t true to what the product is.
The spray can be used on face and body, I’m not so brave to apply it on my face because the product is very oily but my mum likes to top up her SPF when she is in the garden and applies Bioderma MAX SPF 50+ on her face and arms and her skin looks amazing with it. I use it mostly on my arms because I don’t sunbathe anyway but need the protection when I’m at home where we have proper summer and the yellow tint I mentioned makes my skin look so glowy and kind of tanned. I’m adding this product to my favourites because it’s easy to use throughout the day when you have to reapply your sunscreen, it makes the skin look very pretty and I have to say, mum’s skin looks better and better each day after using it. I still don’t think I’d try it on my face but the results on her make me consider doing it.

One of the most popular products from the drugstore brand Catrice is their Camouflage Cream Concealer in a pot. I’ve been meaning to try their Liquid Camouflage for so long but whenever I’m near a Catrice counter, it’s sold out. I have very dark circles under my eyes and I’m always on the hunt for the best concealer that can hide them. The Liquid Camouflage has great coverage, in fact, much better than many of the highend concealers, it stays on for hours, it’s creamy and dries to a matte finish.
The downside is definitely the shade range, I often find myself mixing the shades. Also, the applicator picks up a lot of product and in my opinion, it’s better to apply thin layers of this concealer, as it can look heavy, cakey and even dry.
But I haven’t used another concealer since I got this one and I really like it, I’d recommend it to anyone, not only if you’re on a budget, it’s just a great concealer and the secret is to find the best way for yourself to apply it.

Recently, I dear friend of mine sent to me amazing goodies that I’ve been using ever since. Lumene is one of the most popular Finnish brands and their Nordic Chic range is meant to have all the staples you’d need to put in your makeup bag. I love the classic look of this Moisturising Lipstick and the shade 3 Spring Beauty is the perfect everyday colour but with a twist. I’m not sure what the finish of the rest of the lipsticks is but this one has a slight metallic sheen to it, it’s not too out there, it’s definitely visible but not too metallic and looks quite interesting but still wearable at the same time. I really like it, I don’t have anything like this in my collection and I’ve been using it almost every day since I got it. The formula contains Argan Oil, so the lipstick feels moisturising indeed and smells almost like a MAC lipstick.
Another great beauty item that came from my lovely friend is this Colourpop Super Shock Shadow in Sunset Blvd. This satin golden bronze beauty is fantastic for the summer months and as you probably already know, the texture is a dream to work with. Although I don’t wear eyeshadows on a daily basis, now I feel like I need all the Colourpop eyeshadows.

The fragrance I always seem to be repurchasing is definitely Lancôme La Vie Est Belle. It reminds me of a special trip with my better half and because of this memory, I keep getting the EDT version. But a few weeks ago, I decided to pick up the EDP and the scent took me back to wonderful days. This one is slightly more intense and longwearing on me and although I still prefer the EDT version a bit more, I’m simply in love with this sweet, feminine, powdery scent. It’s beautiful and lovely to use in the summer.

These are my favourite beauty bits for the month of June and I can’t wait for skincare and makeup shopping in July!