Yes, we're back to beauty.
And since I spent the best part of my evening last night trying to book a couple of days away for us in the Summer (apparently all decent hotels in Cornwall are booked in the first week of August. No surprise there then.... any suggestions gratefully received!), my thoughts have turned to Summer. The holiday part of it - clearly ignoring all mentions of weather.
I've been meaning to do this since I got back from holiday the other week but this is a packing blog. Starting with beauty, but finishing with something that little bit different. It's clothes packing but with a bit of a difference...(you have been warned...)
Since it's beauty, it is therefore a very short blog as I am a) absolutely no expert in this field and b) unlike my penchant for handbags and shoes, when it comes to beauty, I am "less is more" (leaving more in the kitty therefore for shoes and bags). All of these things I myself have purchased and repurchased. These aren't reviews, these are things I love and use all the time. And have probably mentioned before but I am randomly asked a lot what do I use and these are all you will need for your holiday. (note the lack of actual suncream. This is a UK holiday we're talking about).
If we're discussing beauty then this is the best bargain I've come across in ages. I am a massive Emma Hardie fan. In fact, it's my every day life saver. And I always order a kit to take away with me so I don't have to take my massive pot of Moringa Balm.
Didn't think when I was ordering this one and assumed that it would be travel sizes. That'll be a no. And that'll be, get ordering immediately as I'm sure once they realise, they'll remove it. Even better you can click and collect from M&S so no delivery fee either.
50ml of Moringa Balm which is worth £19 (usually comes in 100ml) - and cleansing cloth
50ml of Amazing Face Cream which is usually £42 (this is full size)
30ml of Brilliance Facial Oil which is usually £34 (again, this is the full size product)
So £95 worth of product for a bargain £49. The full size products you can actually buy from M&S on the same page for the higher prices. I hadn't used the oil before and I am a complete convert. When you follow with the face cream - honestly, I have never used a combo I like more and that has made my skin as dewy and fresh as it has been in years (I should probably point I am absolutely No beauty expert at all. Just a regular 43 yr old battling with cranky skin like the rest of us).
Emma Hardie Daily Essential Collection from M&S £49
I am then also going to try the Protect & Primer Cream as it has an SPF in it and the one above doesn't.
Protect & Primer Cream SPF30 from Emma Hardie £45
Moving onto two products that I have been using for a while now and get my pasty wally skin through the Summer.
Starting with my face and this honestly lasts forever. You only need to use every other day (which is why I am awful as I don't use an SPF the rest of the time. I know, I know...) and you only need less than a pea size. It's like the tardis.
Chanel Soleil Identite in Bronze £30
And then, the good old fake tan. Yes there are loads out there and I have tried most of them. St. Tropez, St, Moritz, Vita Liberata, Fake Bake and others but this is definitely the best I've used. Why is it the best? Well, there is absolutely no smell. It goes on evenly and is a lovely golden colour with not a hint of orange at all (even the darker shade which I - she who can be seen from space - sometimes uses). But most importantly for me, it fades completely evenly. So evenly, I find you don't even need to use an exfoliator (which I know you should..but we've already established I am a no hoper beauty slut) between applications. Oh and it lasts a good three to four days. It says a week. Hmmm. No. Or maybe that's just my skin. Clearly it doesn't get the most love and attention.
Always use the mitt (any mitt will do although I do think theirs is possibly the cheapest) and moisturise knees (mine take a while...), ankles, elbows - all the dryer bits. Then just whack it on. It's as easy as that. Seriously, if I can do it, anyone can. And just go. You can wash it off as there is a guide colour but I am never that organised, so I just leave it on and tan as I go! I then try and remember to wash it off before I go to bed. However having established my level of beauty dedication, I never remember and have to wash the sheets the next day. I am that woeful.
This however is all sorts of amazing and my life saver for the Summer.
Cocoa Brown One Hour Mousse £7.99
Make up. Well. I wear very little on holiday. But the one thing which makes all the difference is my Nars Multiple. Much prefer this to the powder. I find it gives a better sheen, you only have to take one thing as opposed to a brush as well (yes, I am that lazy) and it goes in two seconds flat. I'm assuming you all know it's a blusher (I'm saying that ... that's what I use it as. And it works just perfectly!).
Nars The Multiple in Orgasm £24
The other must have piece of make up kit that I've found is a cross between a lipstick and a lip balm. Now before I mention it - can I please point out, this is the most expensive lippie thingy I've ever bought. But it has completely been worth it. LOVE.
The Tom Ford Moisturecores £39 After trying every colour in New York, I decided on the Otranto. Which is perfect. I am no colour describer and I honestly think these look different on everyone, but it's a darker shade of natural lip. These are sheer but have enough colour to look like you're wearing lippie. Does that remotely make sense? I was told that this was the most popular shade and did work on everyone (this was by the Sales Assistant in Saks from whom I got the impression they do sort of say what they think you might want to hear).
And if anyone is interested - these work out cheaper here than in New York. Go figure.
And then onto my favourite Summer perfume. Now this is going to sound naff as you like but when we go to Suffolk I always take the same perfume. The kids say it always reminds them of there - it's amazing how scent can evoke so many memories (I hope they're all good..!). It completely appeals to my ridiculous sense of sentimentality.
The one I always take is Jo Malone French Lime Blossom £85
And I have to say, the best thing I took with me this time (the joy of driving and being able to pack a toiletry bag the size of a car) was a luxury shower gel and moisturiser (full size - I'm too tight to buy travel versions of these). Now I was fortunate enough to pick these up at Bicester but they honestly make such a difference to starting my day (and you need so little each time that they last for months. I do promise I shower every day by the way...) I will definitely treat myself at full price when they finally run out.
My other favourite Jo Malone scent which I wear regularly is the Lime Basil and Mandarin and the Grapefruit shower duo work perfectly with both this and the French Lime Blossom as a layering combo.
Jo Malone Grapefruit Body & Hand Wash £28
And the Body and Hand Lotion £38
But I do have some packing tips as well for clothes. Courtesy of some work I've done with hush homewear and a video - yes an actual real life video on You Tube for their website.
Voila! Hope you enjoy it as I actually can't watch it. The children watched it for a minute this morning and suffice to say, I didn't find their rolling around on the sofa in hysterics, remotely reassuring... Although the 11yr old did acquiesce it was "quite cool". And she also found out where I'd got my sarong from that she's been trying to steal (and that I can totally confirm works perfectly as a scarf!)
Finishing with outfit from today. Trying to be vaguely summery... Summer - enough is enough. Pitch up any time you feel like it.
Black and off white breton jumper - H&M
Off white boyfriend Hayden jeans - All Saints
Black boucle jacket - Isabel Marant
Black Leather Falcon Espadrilles - Seven Boot Lane (back in stock)
So tomorrow it's due to... pour with rain again. Of course! I'm consoling myself with more sales researching. Remembering all my rules from yesterday of course...