Saturday 30 June 2018

A Very, Very Late May 2018 Primark Haul - Clothes, Home And Beauty

Do you ever feel as though life is passing you by? This year seems to be going by so fast at the moment that the days seem to be blurring into one! I can only apologise that it's taken so long to get this post up but as I say I don't know where the time seems to be going at the moment.

Primark trips like a lot of things seem to have been a little thin on the ground this year, and to be honest another trip is well overdue at the minute. I haven't been to Primark since May and  since we are nearly in July now I thought it was about time that I shared my May haul with you. It was a bit of a rushed trip, and I didn't really have too long to look around but I hope that the majority of these bits are still available but even if they aren't, you can always find something worth buying in Primark.

I seem to have inherited a lot of things from my mum,  including her sense of humour, her openness, her eye colour, and weirdly enough her obsession with cardigans. We both love a cardigan, and if you're any sort of person then you'll know why. They are just so versatile and so easy to wear, a nice sloppy cardigan can look super cosy and casual, where as a shorter, more fitted garment, can add a bit of stylish, glamour with the right outfit and the right accessories.

Given the weather that we've had over the last week or so, this purchase does seem a little unnecessary but hey this is the UK, warm weather certainly isn't the norm even in the summer months, and even when the days are warm the nights can still be cold. Throw in the fact that Primark's one of those shops where you need to buy things when you see them and then you can understand why I honed in on this long line cardigan.

Okay I probably won't get too much wear out this cardi, till hopefully the autumn but the colour and the style just fit me to a T. With a slight balloon sleeve and no fastenings, this cardigan is in the over sized, long line boyfriend style; The ribbed detail gives it a bit more of a stylish edge, and I love the taupe, stone, mocha, almost deep oatmeal marl esq colour. It's perfect for just throwing on over a vest or a t-shirt, and a pair of leggings or skinny jeans and it's something that I'll eventually get a lot of wear out of. This was originally tagged at £13, and I would have happily paid that but I didn't realise until I got to the till that it was reduced to just £5 - Bargain!

Long line t-shirts and vests are real wardrobe staples for me, Although my body is quite short in comparison to my legs, I'm still pretty long in the back, and being a little curvier around the middle than I would like to be, I do love, no I need! a bit of length in my tops. When it comes to length Primark tops and shirts can be a little bit inconsistent but lately I've found some gems, look for the long line tag and that's exactly what you'll get. I've bought a lot of vests and t-shirts from Primark recently, and this long line charcoal grey, t-shirt was a welcome addition to my wardrobe.

The neutral tone, means that it pretty much goes with anything, and the fit is perfect for my shape. It's long enough to cover my hips and my tummy, and it has plenty of stretch so it clings to and emphasises my curves. You could size up I guess, but if you like a baggy, less form fitting t-shirt then maybe this style isn't for you personally though I love it and at just £3.50, next time I'm in, I'm definitely going to have a look and see if they have any colours other than the ones I already have.

Although I saw quite a few other clothing items that I quite liked (striped trousers I'm talking to you) as I say it was a bit of a rushed trip and I didn't really have a chance to try anything on, so that was it for clothing, but as I've said on numerous occasions, sometimes I really need to shop my own wardrobe and wear more of what I already own, and one way to do that it is to pimp up old items with new accessories.

I love scarves, I always have done, yes you can wear them to keep you warm, and you can even wear them to keep the sun off you and to keep you cool, but as well as the practical element they also have a serious fashion vibe and they can really finish off an outfit. As much as I love jewellery and chunky necklaces, sometimes, a simple scarf just tied loosely around your neck can take your outfit from meh to miaow ! Did I even say that - cheesy! lol, you know what I mean though, depending on the scarf and how you tie it you can add a touch of class to even the most boring jeans and t-shirt combo.

This scarf combines two of the key trends of Spring / Summer 2018, stripes and florals. A little bit more expensive than Primark's usual neck wear options at £6, this scarf comes in a slightly textured fabric, I think the term they use is Swiss dot, and it features almost a self coloured, raised polka dot design, throw in an on trend pom pom trim, and thanks to it's long length, this scarf will take you from beach, to bazaar to bar.

Accessories are great way to update an outfit but some of them also have a practical purpose, and since the plastic bag tax was introduced in the UK, I always now have at least one reusable bag in my bag no matter how big or small that it is. Some of them are a bit mehhhh, who really wants a bag with a shop logo on? I want something a bit funkier, hence I have a few of the Poundland Disney bags, and I've now added this House Of Holland shopper to my plastic free bag repertoire.

Yes, you heard me House Of Holland, it's been a long time coming but eventually Primark seems to have jumped on the high street store / designer collaboration bandwagon. Unlike a lot of stores though Primark's collaboration with designer Henry Holland isn't about selling a name it's all about selling a dream.

Holland has designed several different shopper bags to raise funds for London Graduate Fashion Week and to help the next generation of fashion designers to achieve their dreams. The bags retail at £3 and Primark will donate £1.32 of that from ever bag sold to Graduate Fashion Week. Made from sustainable cotton there are several designs to choose from, but the one I went for with it's vibrant slogan, just screams classic House Of Holland.

I guess if I was going to give this post an alternative title I could have called it a haul contains things that Louise is obsessed with - scarves, bags, long line tees, cardigans, and now cushions! According to my mam I have an unhealthy obsession with cushions, they're just so cosy and comforting and despite having way too many for just one bed, I can't seem to stop buying them! I initially went into Primark's home section to hunt down an ice cream cone shaped cushion that I'd seen on Instagram, alas I couldn't find it but this one made me equally happy.

I know I'm an adult but there is something about cartoon cats and cats in general that I just love, I love Hello Kitty, Simon's Cat is my latest love and there is something about Pusheen that brightens my soul. In fairness, this super soft furry, velour feel cushion which was £6, resembles a cuddly toy more than a cushion but either way I couldn't resist it. It's cute, it feels lovely and like all cuddly toys and cushions it's comforting. 

From home to beauty, and something else that I love, the Primark PS Cuticle Oil, I've talked about this stuff, quite a few times lately, and I'll be talking about it again in my next empties post so at the risk of boring you I'll keep this brief, it's only £1 for a 10ml bottle and it fabby, nuff said!

At the moment my nails are pretty rubbish but if you follow me on Instagram (please follow me if you aren't already I'm @LouLou699), I've recently been posting a quite a few nail art hauls. When my mam was in hospital sleep didn't always come that easily so I spent a lot of the nights trying to while away the hours until daylight came and it was easier to sleep. On more than one occasion I fell into a You Tube wormhole and started watching videos on everything from the sexiest actors without shirts, to pimple popping, vegan recipes, and hours upon hours of nail art! I used to love nail art, and thankfully I've still got a lot of my old stuff including nail foils, and stamping plates, so when I get some nails back again hopefully with lots of new inspiration I can pick up where I left off and get creative. 

I saw this nail art set and I thought that it would make a nice addition to the tools that I already have, it was reduced from £5 to £2, and as well as containing a nice glittery nail file, it also contains 3 silver tone, nail art tools with fabulous purple / fuchsia crystal detailing. The kit contained 2 brushes in two different thickness, which are perfect for striping, painting and detail work, and one fabulous double ended rubber / silicone tool. I'm not going to lie this tool is probably the main reason that I bought this kit, I've seen a few people use this type of tool to smooth out nail foils, and stickers, and also being used to apply things like holographic and pearl powders. I can't wait to start having a play around with these tools, the nail art bits that I already have and some new additions and to see what I come up with x

I've lost count of the times that I've raved about Primark make up brushes but in my experience the majority of them really are that good, even more so when they are only 50p.

When I was last in Intu Metrocentre Primark, they had a whole rack of these PS Foundation & Concealer Brushes reduced from £1.50 to just 50p each.

This double ended brush with rose gold tone ferrules, features a classic, flat rounded foundation brush, and a substantial rounded concealer brush. The hairs are nice and soft, but they're dense enough to do the job - I didn't really need any more make up brushes but this was too good a bargain to turn down - a nice dual purpose brush at an even better price.

Ah Primark, your make up collection just keeps getting better and better, I definitely have my eye on their new highlighters but in the meantime on my last visit I picked up two lip products. The first one comes from their newish bridal inspired range, and this is one of their PS Bride Tribe First Kiss Lipsticks.

Packaged in an on trend, rose gold tone, Tilbury, Lauder, Arden esq ridged tube, these lipsticks have a quirky, push button, pop out design, that adds a bit of quirk and a bit of extra style.

There were a few shades to choose from them in the range but I went for the shade Bachelorette, a really pretty and wearable nude.

Alas I didn't manage any shots of it on the lips but this is a really nice colour and a pretty decent formulation. It has a pretty strong coconut, vanilla scent but it's really moisturising and it leaves a lovely glossy finish. I probably have a kazillion similar shades but for just £3 I'm happy to have this one in my collection.

From something I love to something well that I don't! If you watch the accompanying haul video below, then you'll see that my first impressions of this product were pretty good but when I started using it my opinion rapidly changed!

From their range of K-POP and Kawaii inspired make up products, I picked up the K-POP Pillow Talk Matte Lip Cushion in the shade Cuddle which was £2.

Packaged in pink and white tube, this lip colour features a screw cap, and a velour tip. Simply squeeze the tube, and out comes the product, all fresh and ready to apply to the lips.

So far so good? it looks cute, the packaging works, and I love the fruity taste and scent, but that's pretty much wear the positives end for me. First of all it was nearly impossible to apply evenly, the sponge tipped applicator wiped the product off almost as fast it put it on, throw in a streaky as hell formula, and a matte and dry finish and the whole thing was a just a nightmare. The paler than pale pink colour didn't help either, rather than giving me the Bardot esq lips that I'd hoped for it just seemed to emphasise every flaw, and make me look dead. On the lips this is a big no no for me but since I hate waste I'm going to try and maybe use this as a matte, liquid cheek colour, I haven't tried it yet but fingers crossed it works better on my face than it does on my lips.

You can't win them all I guess and I was pretty happy with the rest of my Primark bargains so I guess I can't really complain. I've made a video to accompany this haul so if you want to hear my first impressions on some of these items,  more my decent into a You Tube wormhole and my opinions on Henry Holland original slogan tees than have a watch via this link or below, and of course don't forget to subscribe to my You Tube channel.

I think another Primark trip is well overdue in LouLouLand, so if you've picked up any Primark bargains recently don't forget to share your links and your finds with me in the comments and of course if you have questions then leave me those as well x 

Monday 18 June 2018

Trimming My Stash - May 2018 Edition - Empties And Mini Reviews

Where on earth does time go? The last few months especially seem to have flown by and blended into one. I'm behind and late again but hey that's the way life is for me at the moment. So no more waffle and contemplation, lets get straight to the point and talk about May's Trimming My Stash.

AVON True Nutra Effects Micellar Cleansing Water - 200ml
Beautifully Scrumptious Deep Moisturising Foot Pack - Tea Tree And Peppermint - 1 x Pair Socks
Primark PS Micellar Facial Cleansing Wipes - 25 x Wipes
Dawin Miller Joy White Jasmine And Cranberry Body Butter - 200ml
Soap & Glory The Scrub Of Your Life - 200ml
Primark PS Oil Balancing Facial Cleansing Wipes For Oily & Blemish Prone Skin - 25 x Wipes
Berrisom Oops Soda Bubble Mask Pore Tox Fruit - 1 x Sheet Mask
Yes To Carrots Hydrating Shower Gel - 500ml
Superdrug Strawberry & Raspberry Shower Foam - 150ml
My Little Beauty Moonrise Make Up Remover Jelly - 100ml
Maybelline The Falsies Volum' Express Mascara - Noir Glamour / Black - 9ml
Total - 11 Items

May was by far my best month of the year so far, I managed to finish 11 items. Alas no haircare this time round but I did manage to finish a nice combo of skincare, and body care products, and I even managed to finish a make up item, so all in all a pretty good result

1. AVON True Nutra Effects Micellar Cleansing Water - 200ml

Micellar water really has been a game changer for me when it comes to skincare. As someone who suffers from chronic illness, I want something that's quick and easy, and micellar waters are exactly that, quick and easy but with more skincare benefits and better for your skin than the humble face wipe. There is a lot of choice on the market now when it comes to micellar waters but at the moment I'm loving two of AVON's offerings, their Anti Ageing 3 in 1 Cleansing Water, and this one from their Nutra Effects range. It contains micellar technology as well as an exclusive active seed complex with chia seed extract and vitamin E. It removes make up really easily without leaving it dry or irritated, and although it does struggle a little bit with long wear mascara, you can also use it to remove eye make up. I have quite sensitive eyes when it comes to eye make up removers, but I can use this with only minimal watering which isn't too bad. As you probably already know AVON always have a lot of offers on so it's worth keeping an eye out, but this size has an RRP of £4, and you can also get a double sized, 400ml bottle for only £6. 

2. Beautifully Scrumptious Deep Moisturising Foot Pack - Tea Tree And Peppermint - 1 x Pair Socks

I've already talked about these in a previous empties post (read it here) and I still love them. Moisturised, softer, smoother and better looking feet in less than 20 minutes and all for just a £1, what's not to love! Annoyingly these fabulous socks don't seem to be available in all Poundland stores, so when you see them take my advice and stock up!

3. Primark PS Micellar Facial Cleansing Wipes - 25 x Wipes

Okay I know I've just been talking about how micellar waters are now my go to for quick and easy cleansing but every once in a while I do use cleansing wipes on my face (I know, I know, feel free to slap my wrists if you ever meet me!). I bought these once when I couldn't find my favourite tea tree wipes, and I have to say that they're pretty decent. They don't feel drying or harsh, and they removed a light make up fairly easily, without too much rubbing. Obviously knowing a bit about skincare I would never advocate the use of cleansing wipes on a regular basis (ahem) but at just £1 for two packs of 25 wipes these are perfect for emergencies, and as Caroline Hirons says for fannies, flights and festivals x 

4. Dawin Miller Joy White Jasmine And Cranberry Body Butter - 200ml

I already mentioned the accompanying body wash in April's empties post, and whilst I loved that I loved this body butter even more. For me it was more of a thick body cream rather than a true body butter. Despite it's thickness it absorbed easily leaving the skin feeling silky soft, and smelling heavenly of heady white flowers with just a touch of tart fruit. Unfortunately as I said in my previous empties post this entire range appears to have discontinued which is a shame, but thankfully I still have a bottle of the hand and body lotion left so I can enjoy this intoxicating fragrance for just a little bit longer.

5. Soap & Glory The Scrub Of Your Life - 200ml

Now if you are a regular reader you'll know that when it comes to body scrubs, I'm a salt or sugar scrub gal! Scrubs like this one don't normally float my boat but after using a few tubes of this in the past I'm *very nearly* a convert. With the original Soap & Glory scent this scrub has a cream gel formula, which is crammed full of exfoliating particles. The grains are of a decent size so it's pretty scrubby, and it produces a creamy moisture rich foam on application. In my experience it takes a bit of rinsing but it leaves the skin feeling silky soft and smooth. When it comes to Soap & Glory scrubs I definitely prefer the gritty sugar ness of Sugar Crush but if you don't like things quite so rough then this one is a good alternative, particularly if you love the original Soap & Glory scent.

6. Primark PS Oil Balancing Facial Cleansing Wipes For Oily & Blemish Prone Skin - 25 x Wipes

Would it even be an empties post in LouLouLand if I didn't include a pack of these? No I don't think so! Now I'm not going to lie here, my mam probably used at least half of these when she was in hospital. With the high tea tree content, they are great for freshening up the skin and cleaning the hands. Don't just think of these particular wipes as just face wipes, they really are a multi purpose essential, even if you never even use them on your face.

7. Berrisom Oops Soda Bubble Mask Pore Tox Fruit - 1 x Sheet Mask

I'm really enjoying using face masks at the moment and I particularly enjoying trying out lots of new types and formulations. This one is a combination of both a sheet mask, and one of the Instagram phenomenons of the last year or so, the bubble mask. Designed to detoxify the skin and refine the pores, this fruity, bubblegum scented mask is basically a sheet mask specifically for the lower half of your face. Apply it to your face and after a minute of so the surface of the sheet mask starts to bubble and foam. It feels cool on the skin at first and as the bubbles start to appear you feel a fabulous almost tickly, popping sensation on the skin. Leave the mask on and enjoy the sensation for around 10 - 15 minutes, then take it off and then massage the excess bubbles and liquid into the skin. My skin initially felt a bit sticky but the excess slowly absorbs leaving the skin feeling smooth, clean and fresh. My pores also did look a little bit smaller and a little bit less obvious, in the short term. 

I literally loved every single thing about this mask, I loved the scent, and I loved how the mask felt on my skin, and I loved how my skin looked and felt after application. This mask would be great for a special event or for when you skin needs an extra boost, or if you just want to have a little bit of fun with your skincare. This mask is available from various retailers including Urban Outfitters, Beauty Bay and the Mask House.

I love the whole bubble mask idea and not just for Instagram picture potential ;). I'm definitely going to be trying a few more out and I recently managed to get my hands on the Insta famous Elizavecca Milk Piggy Carbonated Bubble Clay Mask (Check out my Instagram for some pics ;) It smells a bit weird and it is a touch messy, but I'm loving the bubbly sensation and how clean my skin feels when I've used it - bubble masks are definitely the way to go!

8. Yes To Carrots Hydrating Shower Gel - 500ml

If you've been reading my blog for a while now then you'll know that I'm a big fan of the whole Yes To range. Over the years I've been lucky enough to have reviewed quite a few of their products for natural beauty site My Pure, and whilst I've enjoyed using a lot of their skin and hair care items, my real love is their shower products. Not only are they very economical in this size but the range is also animal friendly, and free from parabens, SLS, and petroleum. With a light fresh, fruity powdery scent, this particular product is specifically designed for normal to dry skin, it's crammed full of beta carotene (from carrots don't you know!), dead sea water, and almond, olive and jojoba oils, making it perfect for summer. I really enjoyed using this product and I would definitely consider repurchasing it in the future. You can read a full review of this product here

9. Superdrug Strawberry & Raspberry Shower Foam - 150ml

Although it's been over three years now since I lost my bath tub, I still do miss it, but surviving on showers alone hasn't been as bad as I always thought it would be. Yes I miss the relaxation element of a bath, but I've really enjoyed trying out new and different types of shower products. I've really learnt to love the versatility of shower foams. As well as being super quick and easy to use they also seem to add a bit more of a luxurious element to the humble shower, and since you can also use them as a shaving foam they are also super versatile. This was basically a very creamy, and moisturising shower foam with a slightly sickly berry scent. The product itself was nice enough but the pump was a bit stiff so it was a little bit difficult to dispense. Unfortunately I can't seem to find this, or any of the other fragrances online any more so I think these shower foams may have been discontinued.

10. My Little Beauty Moonrise Make Up Remover Jelly - 100ml

I got this product some time ago in a My Little Box, and it was a product from their exclusive My Little Beauty range. It was basically a cleanser / make up remover, which was very similar in both application and results to the long discontinued Elemis Melting Cleansing Gel (read my product rave here). It has a thick, jelly like texture, and a fresh, fruity scent, simply massage it into dry skin, and slowly massage in some warm water, creating a slightly warm feeling and a creamy cleansing milk. This cleanser removed the majority of my make up without too much effort, and it left my oily, combination skin feeling smooth and clean. I really liked this product it's just a shame that we were never able to buy the My Little Beauty products in the UK.

11. Maybelline The Falsies Volum' Express Mascara - Noir Glamour / Black - 9ml

Maybelline are famous for a lot of things in the make up world but look at any magazine's beauty awards and you'll normally find a Maybelline mascara. Personally I think that Maybelline Great Lash is an overrated clumpy mess but I love Colossal and I love the Falsies! It's easy to apply, it's pretty resilient, it defines and lengthens the lashes, and it adds just the right amount of volume. Although the packaging and shade names seem to have changed slightly since I last bought this one, if you're looking for a new mascara and you don't want to spend a fortune, then this could be one to try and it's definitely something that I would consider repurchasing.

So they were my very late May empties, I've already finished a couple of items already this month but I don't think that month is going to be quite as successful as May, but you never know x Let me know if you have any questions on any of the items that I've talked about and if you have any bubble mask recommendations I'd love to hear them x