BIRCHBOX DECEMBER

 
First things first - Merry Christmas! I've had the loveliest Christmas this year, first a whole week in Sweden with my family before Christmas and now just over a week with my boyfriend's family in Devon. We got here on Friday and we are staying until next Monday. It's so nice to have plenty of time to see everyone, both friends and family, without having to stress about it. If you follow me on Instagram you'll see plenty of snaps from our time away. 
 
Before we went away I got my second Birchbox! This was the December box and I'm super pleased with the contents of the box. The first thing that really jumped out to me was the full size (!) eyeliner from Ciaté. Not only am I a hardcore eyeliner user (it's been a part of my daily makeup routine since I was about fourteen years old), so it will be very well used, but I do love when they include full sized products and not only samples. I was also really happy to see the Eyelighter from LAQA & Co., I've never heard about the brand before but I think it's such a trendy and current product that I will definitely get loads of use out of. As it's a smaller product it's really easy to take with you in a little hand bag for when you need to top up your makeup. 
 
I also got a face moisturiser from Amie. I had just used up the one I got in the November box, and as we were going away for Christmas this was the perfect size to bring with. I'm quite happy receiving skin lotions, as my skin literally drinks it up, but I'm not sure how I'll feel if I keep getting one in each box. This was of course only my second Birchbox, so it might just be a coincidence. 
 
The last two products in the box was a Wonder Balm from Percy & Reed, and the Hoola Zero Tanlines from Benefit. I haven't had the opportunity to try either of these products out yet, but will let you know my thoughts once I have (probably on my Instagram stories, so stay tuned!). I didn't bring the hair balm with me when we went away, so it will have to be a product review first in the new year, but the Hoola Zero Tanlines might come out on New Years Eve already... We'll just have to wait and see. ; )
 
Speak soon! x
 
Birchbox - Birchbox UK - beauty blogger - beauty box - benefit

JURLIQUE

 
I've been dying to share with you about this Australian skin care brand! They are the number one premium skin care brand in Australia, and they are called Jurlique. They make some wonderful products with ingredients grown on their biodynamic farm down under, and I've had the pleasure to try some of their products out. 
 
I would highly recommend picking some of these products up as Christmas presents, if you haven't done all your shopping yet. They got the most amazing range, with most of their products being focus around the rose, which they consider the queen of botanicals when it comes to skin care. This means that most of their products have a very distinctive and lovely rose scent. If you are not too keen on roses, they do offer other ranges too (such as lavender, calendula etc).
 
You can pick up Jurlique products either in their stand alone store on Oxford Street, at Debenhams or on various shops online (e.g. Sephora, LookFantastic, BeautyBay).
 
 
I'm a fan of the brand since before, if you follow me on Instagram you'll already know that I swear by their calendula face cream. It's part of their redness rescue range, perfect if you've got eczema prone, sensitive skin. The other products which now are part of my collection are the above, their famous Rosewater Balancing Mist, Activating Water Essence, Rose Hand Cream and their Herbal Recovery Advanced Serum. 
 
 
The rosewater mist is such a lovely product, which can be used as a toner and also to set makeup. If you've got dry skin, this is ideal to bring with you during the day and spray over your face to give yourself a hydration boost. I've tried plenty of 'mists' before, as my skin tends to dry out during the day and get flaky and irriated, however most of them mess up your makeup because they are too wet. This is the best one I've tried to date, not splashing your whole face. 

 
I have only now come to realise the importance of looking after your hand. I often suffer from eczema on my hands, which makes them dry. This ages my hands terribly! I have now started to carry around hand lotion, so that I can slather on generous amounts as soon as my hands starts to feel dry. This one has got plenty of essential oils from the roses they grow on the Jurlique farm, meaning it's highly moisturising. And it smells so lovely.
 

A highly concentrated serum can make all the difference in your skin care routine - after all, it's what sheet masks are soaked in. I have been using this one for the last couple of weeks, and I've had so many compliments on my skin. My normally dry and flaky face is now smooth and radiant, and even though I can't give it all to this one (I obey a quite long and specific skin care regime), I will definitely say that it wouldnt' be the same had I not been using this one. 
 
 
This is one of those products I swear by. I've been using an essance in my skin care routine since April, and it makes such a difference. It preps your skin for the rest of your skin care routine (normally applied after toner, but before serum) and makes sure that your skin can soak up as much moisture as possible from the rest of the products. It gives my skin such a lovely, dewy glow - which if you've got dry skin will now is one of those 'impossible' things to achieve, something you normally will have to fake with a hell of a lot of highlighter and a good foundation. 
 
If you're not sure which product is a perfect match for you, or which range to go for, visit one of Jurlique's counters in Debenhams or their stand alone store on Oxford Street. In their Oxford Street shop they also have a treatment room where they offer a range of different massages and facials. 
 
Have you tried any of Jurlique's products before? Which one, and what did you think? 
jurlique - premium skin care - skin care

BEAUTY WISH LIST

 
Christmas is just around the corner now (yay!) and I've already started to purchase Christmas presents. I bloody love Christmas, and decorating the house and wrapping presents is just pure joy to me. I will admit that I don't have many Christmas decorations (yet), I've been house sharing since I moved to London so it was never really a priority until last year when I had my first own flat. Christmas decorations are also quite expensive, considering you are limited to when you can use them, and I therefore try to buy them after Christmas, when they go on sale. 
 
Anyhow, this post is not meant to be about Christmas decorations, but about Christmas presents! I mentioned earlier that I've already started buying Christmas presents, and for those whose presents I have bought yet, I've got most of them figured out. I can't disclose what I've bought others (for obvious reasons), but I can talk about what I wish for! If you are struggling to think of Christmas presents for your girlfriend/sister/daughter/friend, then this might be of help (hi mum, hi dad!). 
 
I'm a massive beauty junkie as you probably already now, and I do think that beauty products make perfect presents. I've lately started obsessing about Zoeva, and bought their Caramel Melange palette on Black Friday. I hope it will arrive early this week, as I can't wait to start playing around with it. It looks so beautiful! I also really like their Cocoa Blend and Blanc Fusion palettes - all three has got really good reviews and work wonderful together. An eyeshadow palette is a great Christmas gift, not only are they super useful (especially during the holidays), but they are also really good value. These palettes are £17.50 each. 
 
Zoeva also do some lovely brushes, which are of really good quality. Brushes are one of those things that I rarely treat myself to, which is why they are such a good gift! A good quality brush can make such a difference, and is well worth the investment. This set is a bit on the pricey side (£105), but Zoeva (and many other brands, such as Morphe Brushes) offer plenty of different sets at various price points. 
 
A blush palette is another thing I might not buy for myself, but would love to get as a gift. I'm not very adventurous with blushes, I like a nude/peachy/pinky, very subtle blush, which is what I love about the palette above. Some of the darker, more tanned one would definitely work as a bronzer for me - and if you've been following this blog for a while you'll know that I love a good bronzer. This palette retails for £14,50, which is a very reasonable price for a palette of this size!
 
I've been using the ABH pressed powder one contour kit for almost a year now, and I still haven't hit the pan on any of the colours! I did recently start to experiment with a contour stick, and I'm now sold on the cream contour as well. I love to first use the stick, and then set it with a bit of the powder. One of my next beauty purchases (or Christmas gifts?) will therefore definitely be the ABH Cream Contour Kit. This one is also a little bit on the pricey side (£39), but it lasts for ages which makes it worth the money. 
 
When you've got skin like mine (dry, flakey, sensitive and eczema prone) you need base products which won't budge for anything. Earlier this year I tried Pai's Rosehip Oil, which is for hypersensitive skin. It helps reduce redness and fine lines, and keeps your skin moisturised and plump. When products normally promise this, that's not always the case on my skin. It sometimes feels like nothing can make the sandpaper which is my skin soft and comfortable, but this is a true miracle worker! I'm completely converted, and everyone I speak to, regardless of skin type, seem to love rosehip oil too. Those who have I've spoken to with more oily skin than me have sometimes said that they've replaced their face cream with rosehip oil, but I just use it as part of my skin care routine, before my face cream but after my serum.
 
Not only do I spend a lot of time and money on serums and face creams, but I also like a good primer and foundation to make sure that my skin looks its best. I've heard nothing but good things about the Glossier Moisturizing Primer, which is also anti-redness (be gone eczema!). The packaging is also super cute, which is always a bonus. I would also love to try out the Urban Decay All Nighter Foundation. The foundation has got a full coverage, which isn't what I'd normally wear for day to day use (I'm more of a medium kinda gal), but for long nights and early mornings it might be a life saver. I love all of my other UD products, but I'm yet to try one of their foundations. 
 
Another UD product that I would like to restock on (yes, this is a product I've had before, but sadly I've run out of it) is their All Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray. I know from experience that this product is amazing, not only for setting your face before a long day (or night), but also for when your makeup needs a refresh during the day. 
 
Another great Christmas present is perfume, which shouldn't come as a surprise. My current favourite is the POP by Stella McCartney. Earlier this year we helped out at the launch for this perfume, which is when I first discovered it, and I've been obsessing about it since then. 
 
Last but not least on this list is the Philip Kingsley Elasticizer, which was originally created for Audrey Hepburn. It's the brand's hero product, the first pre-shampoo treatment. Philip Kingsley specialises in sensitive scalp and hair loss (great if you're battling eczema), and got plenty of exciting hair masks which can help if you are suffering from any kind of scalp problems. I tend to get eczema in my scalp from time to time, but they have plenty of products which really helps. I've been using the Elasticizer before, and love it, but I've run out and would need a new one. It makes my hair so soft and bouncy, when used regularly it makes my hair look so healthy. 
 
I hope you enjoy this post, please let me know your thoughts in the comments. I will try to get another wish list posted this week, to give you some more inspiration and gift ideas. Speak soon! x
christmas - christmas gift ideas - gift guide - wish list