Florabundance: May 2011

31 May 2011

May 2011 Favourites

Hello everyone! Hope you all had a fantastic bank holiday weekend. I spent it painting my bedroom :-)

May was a very busy month for me, what with finishing university and all the work that went with it, so it was quite hard for me to choose any favourites as I haven't really used much! But I managed to scramble five together, and they are probably my most used of the month.

1. Jergens Natural Glow Gradual Tanner
I bought 3 tubes of this stuff in America last summer to bring home with me, as it is the BEST gradual tanner I've ever used! This is my last tube and I'm very sad to be running out of it :( it is never streaky and the colour is very subtle and and natural. The smell isn't too bad either - definitely not that strong compared to others! Unfortunately this stuff isn't available in the UK.

2. Chanel Mat Lumiere
I've been wearing this a lot in May as it is fairly full coverage, which means no need for concealer, which means a faster make-up application in the morning! I've been applying this with a damp beauty blender sponge, dotting it over my face and then blending it with my sponge. LOVEEEE!

3. Essie 'Secret Affair' Nail Polish
Finally, a pale nail polish that I can apply with it looking like a terrible mess! This applies evenly and is quite fool-proof. It is a gorgeous pale, milky pink that has shimmer.

4. Chanel Rouge Coco Shine Lipstick in 'Chance'
I bought this as a little "yay my degree is finished!" present to myself. It's so beautiful on the lips. In the tube it looks hot pink but on the lips it is a beautiful, muted pink that is shiny. Much like a lip balm, but with a bit more pigmented colour. This is going to be a summer staple for sure!

5. Nars Lagune Bronzer
This is basically the only bronzer in my collection that ever gets used these days. As I'm feeling quite excited for summer now, my bronzer has been getting used every day to help make me look a little less pasty! Love Laguna - think it suits most people.

What are your May favourites? Looking forward to seeing everyone else's posts and videos!

Lydia xox

29 May 2011

Why 'Snob' Is So Not My Colour...

I'm quite ashamed of how terrible I look in this photo, but I just HAD to post it just so I could make a point!

In the past I had heard so many good things and endless praises for MAC's Snob lipstick in the blogsphere.. but after picking out of my make-up stash the other day I'm starting to wonder why?! It looks dreadful!

It looks cheap and nasty on the lips, it's safe to say a bright lilac-pink is so NOT my colour! Maybe it's just me, or does it look like this on everyone?!

Does anyone else hate Snob?!

Lydia xox

28 May 2011

Recent Book Haul

Hello everyone! Hope you are all having a great start to the weekend :-) I have been busy listing stuff to sell on ebay and curled up reading a book... which brings me to the topic of my post!

I did a little book order on Waterstones.com last week and I wanted to show you what I got. I know I have quite a few book lovers following me so I guess it could be interesting to see what I got or maybe give you a little inspiration?!

As I haven't finished any of these yet I will just provide a brief description from the website...


1. Room - Emma Donoghue
Jack is five. He lives with his Ma. They live in a single, locked room. They don't have the key. Jack and Ma are prisoners. 'This book will break your heart ...It is the most vivid, radiant and beautiful expression of maternal love I have ever read' - "Irish Times"

2. Thanks for the Memories - Cecelia Ahern
Lose yourself in the magical new novel from the No.1 bestselling author of PS I Love You Joyce Conway remembers things she shouldn't. She knows about tiny cobbled streets in Paris, which she has never visited. And every night she dreams about an unknown little girl with blonde hair. Justin Hitchcock is divorced, lonely and restless. He arrives in Dublin to give a lecture on art and meets an attractive doctor, who persuades him to donate blood. It's the first thing to come straight from his heart in a long time. When Joyce leaves hospital after a terrible accident, with her life and her marriage in pieces, she moves back in with her elderly father. All the while, a strong sense of deja vu is overwhelming her and she can't figure out why.

3. The Brightest Star In The Sky - Marian Keyes
June the first, a bright summer's evening, a Monday ...And into the busy, bustling homes at 66 Star Street slips, unseen, a mysterious visitor. As the couples, flatmates and repentant singletons of No 66 fall in and out of love, clutch at and drop secrets, laugh, cry and simply try to live, no one suspects the visitor patiently waiting in the wings. For soon, really very soon, everything is going to change ...

I am currently reading Thanks for the Memories by Cecelia Ahern and I'm enjoying it :-)

Sorry this post hasn't much effort put in to it - but there isn't much I can say on books I have not read yet, so I thought borrowing a description might be quite useful.

Lydia xox

25 May 2011

Nars Sheer Glow and I Fell Out... But Now We're Friends Again!

Hello everyone! Hope you are all well.

You might remember that about a year ago I did a negative review on Nars Sheer Glow because there was so much hype surrounding the foundation, yet it didn't seem to work for me - it even broke me out in cystic spots, or at least I thought it did. You can view that review here.

Despite my negative review many moons ago, I felt compelled to try it again because so many people still seem to love it, and plus - it looked great on my skin, so it was such a shame to have to write it off. I couldn't help but wonder if it was just my skin playing up at the time last year and not actually the foundations fault, so I finally bit the bullet and got a sample pot of it to try out.

I used the sample for three days in a row with no problems, and I was totally loving it. It was such a relief to see that it didn't break me out, and it looked so nice on the skin. In my opinion, it has the perfect coverage - it isn't too heavy and it isn't too light - I guess you could call it medium coverage! I also find that this foundation gets better throughout the day. It is fairly matte at first, but throughout the day I find it looking more luminous - but certainly not shiny!

It's safe to say that there has been a 360 degree change in my thoughts on this foundation. I'm so glad I decided to take another chance on it!

For reference, my shade is Deauville (Light 4). I apply it with my fingers or my beauty blender sponge. I ordered it for £29.50 from John Lewis.

Lydia xox

22 May 2011

Sunday Make-Up

Most Sunday's I go make-up free but sometimes, like today, I get a bit bored and like to have a play around with make-up :)

Here's a short but sweet post on today's face of the day :

Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua in 20
Nars Deep Throat Blusher
MAC Patina Eyeshadow
Lancome Hypnose Precious Cells Mascara
Bare Escentuals Brow Gel
MAC Creme Cup

What make-up do you go for on Sundays? Or do you go for a naked face?

Lydia xox

Garnier Roll-On Thoughts

Hello everyone! Hope you are all having a great weekend. I'm currently still in my pjs, writing this from the comfort of my bed :-) ah the joys of having nothing to do!

Today I wanted to do a little review of the Garnier Roll-On. I was a little skeptical of this and would have never originally bought at the full price of £10. However, about four weeks ago I saw it on offer in Tesco for £6 I just bit the bullet and bought it. And boy am I glad I did - it's been used every day since!

I use the roll on every day without fail - whether it's a make-up day or a make-up free day. I apply it after moisturiser but before foundation and it works a treat. It really makes me look much more awake, feels cool and soothing on my tired eyes, and generally works as a fantastic concealer for dark circles!
I could never really wear concealer on my under eyes before as it would always look dry or creased after a while. This roll-on has been a total life-saver, and is now 100% my HG under-eye concealer. If I am having a make-up free day then all I need is this to make me look a lot more awake and presentable. I have happily gone to my local shops with just a slick of this under each eye and my moisturiser.

So to sum it up... I totally recommend this to everyone! I promise you will not regret it :-)

Have you tried the Garnier Roll-On? Do you agree with me?

Lydia xox

21 May 2011

My Hair Care Routine

Hello everyone! I am very excited to report that I have officially finished university - for ever! I had two big deadlines yesterday, and now that all my work is handed in I am free. It is a very bittersweet feeling... but on the plus side, at least I have a lot of free time on my hands now to get some blogging done eh?!

Today I thought I'd do my hair care routine post, because although I do love make-up I think my biggest passion lies with hair. The only thing is is that these non-flash photos I took this morning looked very sharp and clear on my camera, but once I had uploaded them to the computer they were a bit blurred - sorry about that guys!

Anyway, here is a run down of the products I have been using for quite some time now...

1. James Brown Scandalous Volumising Shampoo and Volumising Conditioner
I use these every time I wash my hair, which is every other day. I used to use the moisturising version of these two but I felt they weighed my hair down so I swtiched to these. They are a lot lighter and work well for the new wavy haired look I've been sporting a lot recently :-)

2. Unite Weekender Clarifying Shampoo and Kerastase Reflection Chroma Riche Treatment Masque
I use these two together once a week - usually at the weekend - to really deep clean my hair and inject some moisture back in to my tired locks. Love these two and they are ideal to use together as a weekly treatment to fight product build-up and treat my hair to some hydration. I would recommend both of these very highly!

3. Kerastase Nectar Theremique and Moroccan Oil
These are two leave-in treatments that I interchange from day to day. I use them both (not at the same time of course!) on damp hair, and they both leave my hair so incredibly silky smooth. I also use the tiniest amount of Moroccan Oil on my freshly dried/straightened hair to make it a bit more sleek and to smooth down flyaways. Would be totally lost without either of these two - particularly Moroccan Oil! Moroccan Oil is a FAB investment :-)

4. Denman Combs and Aveda Brush
These are pretty self-explanatory really, I use the combs to detangle damp hair and to create my parting. I then use the Aveda brush when drying my hair/on dried hair. Not a lot to say about these except that the Aveda hairbrush is a great investment and that I cannot stress enough how important it is to use combs on wet hair not brushes! I lose a LOT more hair when I use a brush instead of combs.

Finally, the hair style I have been sporting a lot recently. I create this using my Babyliss Waving Wand which I simply LOVE! Must do a review soon. When my hair isn't wavy I just use my trusty GHD's to iron some natural kinks out and fight the frizz a little. Pretty basic and nothing too fancy, sorry!

Hope you enjoyed this,

Lydia xox

16 May 2011

I can always rely on Office...

... to provide me with a pair of summer sandals. Year after year, I always get my summer sandals from Office. They tick all the boxes for great quality, comfort and style.

Last week I decided it was time to start preparing for summer, and I toddled on down to my local Office in a bid to scout out some summer sandals.

I chose these dusty/dirty pink (they came in black and brown too!) ones for £50. That is quite steep for high street, but I'm happy to pay that price as I know they will last. I rather one expensive pair than go through multiple cheap pairs! FYI I bought these in a size 4 so they are true to size.

Below: with flash (not that true to colour)

Below: without flash (more true to colour)

The back is a zip up. I usually find shoes that have a zip at the back never fit me because I have quite a high instep, and so the zip never goes up no matter what size I try on. But these beauties zipped up fine - yay!

Just wanted to share them with you all! I can't wait to wear these on my holiday to Cuba in July. I'm on a bit of a shoe-buying kick at the moment, as you may be able to tell. Plus, it's a bit of a seasonal ritual for me. In summer I have to buy a pair of sandals, and in winter I have to buy a pair of boots. They are like the staples of my wardrobe for each season so I believe in making a good investment!

Are you like me and do the same? Have you bought your summer sandals yet?

Let me know!

Lydia xox

15 May 2011

The Wedges That Were So Good I Bought 2 Pairs!

Hi everyone! Second post in one day, this is totally unlike me eh?!

I mentioned on Twitter about two weeks ago that I bought some wedges and had a few replies asking me to blog about them. So here is my very belated post for those who asked :)

So as I said, about two weeks ago I went on a very spur-of-the-moment shopping trip and I spotted these beauties in New Look for £19.99 (but I had them for £16 each with student discount!) I tried them on and they were so comfy, practical and perfect for summer that I just had to buy them in both colours. I think I will wear black more for nights out and more formal stuff, and I will wear the tan ones on holiday and in the daytime :)

One thing I have to say is that I wish they did these in the regular fit as opposed to the wide fit that they are. I am a size 4, sometimes a 3.5, but on the whole a 4 will always fit. Because these are wide fit they do feel a bit loose sometimes, but it doesn't make them uncomfy so I'll let that slide :)

At £19.99 a pair I think these are brilliant value for money and are so comfy that they will be a worthwhile summer investment.

Lydia xox

Playlist 15/05

Hello everyone,

Today I thought I would share with you all some of my favourite songs at the moment. This isn't the kind of post I normally write, but it's nice to break from routine sometimes, and hopefully some of you will enjoy this.

1. Modest Mouse - Float On

2. Kanye West - All of The Lights

3. Naked and Famous - Punching In A Dream

4. Chris Brown - Yeah 3x

5. Death Cab For Cutie - Crooked Teeth

6. Ellie Goulding - Lights

7. Neon Trees - Animal

8. Charlie Simpson - Down Down Down

What songs are you liking at the moment? Give me some inspiration! I am always looking for new music :-)

Lydia xox

8 May 2011

April Favourites 2011

Hello everyone! Long time no post - sorry, but yet again I am just too busy with my dissertation and assignments.

Fortunately I finish university (for ever.. scary!) on the 20th May so expect an influx of posts from there on after!

This months favourites:


1. Embryolisse Lait-Creme Concentre Moisturiser - bought this after seeing Daisy's monthly favourites last month and I have not been disappointed! This really hydrates the more drier-normal areas of my face, whilst not making my t-zone any oiler. My skin looks so much better the morning after I have used this. I have nothing but good things to say about it. Will definitely be ordering a larger tube when this runs out!

2. MAC Creme Cup Lipstick - love this colour, not much to say except it's an easy and wearable pinky nude. It's just about the only nude I can actually pull off, so of course I love it! It gets bonus points for being a Creamsheen too :)

3. No7 Purifying Face Mask - I bought this after reading that Fearne Cotton loves it - I'm a huge Fearne fan so of course I succumbed! This is a nice alternative to my Origins Out of Trouble mask, and much cheaper too. You apply it to damp skin and it heats up on touch, but unfortunately the heat doesn't last very long like some heated face masks - that's probably the only down side. I like that its gently exfoliating, as you massage this into the skin for a couple of minutes and then leave it rest for a couple more minutes before rinsing.

4. Elemis Fresh Skin Peachy Perfect Face Wash - I had ran out of face wash and wanted to try something new, I'll be honest I only bought this because I'm an Elemis fan and the £12 price tag was too good to miss! I'm glad I ordered it though as it is a lovely face wash, nothing groundbreaking it is just lovely and gentle.

5. Dolce & Gabbana 'The One' perfume - my auntie gave me this perfume as she bought it but didn't like how it smelled on her. Luckily for me, it reacts well with my skin and I love this scent! I wore it last month every day to my work experience placement so it reminds me of that - I love having scents that remind you of a place or time :)

Lydia xox