My Most Used Makeup Products of 2017

*Alternative title – “My Products With The Shabbiest And Dirtiest Packaging” but at least that shows I actually use them, this definitely isn’t one of those posts with pictures of immaculate products which you just know have lived in a drawer all their lives, so you’ll have to forgive the dirty, dingy products. I’ve taken an inventory of the products I either use everyday or reach for without hesitation when I’m doing my makeup and I think I’ve found a good mix of high end and “Drugstore” products that are sure to deliver that I will (and have) repurchased again and again.  

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2016 Favourites!

First off, sorry I’ve been MIA the last few weeks, I graduated uni (finally!) and have been working almost full time plus all the usual December tasks that take up so much more time than you expect they will. But I’m back and 2017 will hopefully hold many more blog posts than this year did. I’ve rounded up my best products from the year – most of them purchased within the last couple of months but I always love my new things best – so here’s my 2016 Favourites.

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Summer Essentials – Part 2


Continuing on from last week’s post about my hair and body Summer beauty essentials this week I’m covering my must-have Summer makeup products. This is quite dominated by products with staying power and those that add glow, to keep in with the whole highlight/strobing trend that was so huge for Summer over in the US and UK.


A good glimmery bronzer is a must for me to add colour but also shine. Contour is one of my favourite things but in the Summer my shimmery bronzers are basically all I use to add glow not sculpting.
On the same token highlight pens are brilliant in the warmer months. Fuss free and super quick they add a swipe of gleam that is super pretty and also makes it harder to discern between whether you’re sweating or just have really dewy, glowy makeup (love it).
Powder of course goes everywhere else I haven’t swiped either highlight or bronzer to make sure my foundation doesn’t disappear in two seconds, and to give it a bit of staying power.
Plus it’s not Summer without waterproof mascara, this Anastasia Beverly Hills Lash Genius really is genius as it’s a topcoat that instantly turns your favourite mascara into an extra curl-holding waterproof version of itself.

SPF is one of the most important steps in any skincare routine year-round but doubly in the warmer part of the year. I love my lip balms with added SPF and the La Roche-Posay 50+ SPF fluid that is an easy step after moisturiser and before primer to add an extra strong layer of protection against the sun, without adding stickiness or a thick extra product to your face.
I can’t be without primer generally but the matte primers on the market are especially great since they provide a smooth even base that helps to stop foundation sliding and helps keep products – cream and powder – on your face. Following up with a setting spray will also help to keep everything locked in for a bit longer in the heat.
Sandwiching the products is one of the best ways to build up staying power when it’s humid and hot so starting with primer, layering up foundation and concealer, adding cream or liquid colours then topping with powder and finally setting with a spray. It sounds like a lot of makeup but all the layers  can all be thin and the technique ensures your makeup will last and stay looking great.
What are your Summer must-haves?
Thanks for reading!
Holwa x

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Summer Essentials – Part 1

I’ve noticed all my beauty routines alter in the past few weeks with the onset of the hot weather. I’ve been loading up on the dry shampoo and texturising hair products, cutting back on thick hair and body moisturisers in favour of lighter products and overall thinning down my products for the Summer. So I thought I’d do a couple of Summer essentials posts, this is part 1 talking about hair and body products and next week will be all about the makeup.

When it’s hot the last thing I want is to feel coated in product or sticky so I’ve been favouring scrubs properly slough off dead skin and keep my skin soft and then using a lighter moisturiser like this Nivea one. I love this moisturiser because it hasn’t got an overwhelming smell and it’s super light and absorbs so quickly that two minutes after applying it’s like there’s nothing on my skin, everything is just soft and smooth. Plus the added firming effect is a bonus for smoothing out cellulite and dimples on my legs, just in time for bikini season.

In the Summer I tend to notice my hair being drier than normal, I guess because of all the sun and I tend to be blonder in the Summer so the bleach doesn’t help either. Instead of using a thick, heavy leave in conditioner I just smooth a bit of oil through to tame frizziness and then spray in sea salt spray (I love the Lush one, it smells like flowers by the beach and is all natural) to add some grit and help my curls set a bit more nicely.

Plus with my hair being so short at the moment I’ve found myself reach for volumising and texturising products to lift it up and away from my neck to stay cool since I can’t tie it up anymore and also to get a kind of messy beachy look. This Colab dry shampoo by Ruth Crilly (A Model Recommends on the interwebs) smells amazing and works so well to freshen up between washes as well as add some volume without leaving my hair feeling chalky or too dried out. Used with the Toni & Guy 3D volumiser my has heaps of texture and lift without being sticky or weighed down by thick products.

I also use all the usual Summer products like fake tan (I’m loving the Bondi Sands liquid gold (review here) and the Jergens gradual tan moisturiser) but these ones have stood out as changes or things I’m reaching for more often as the weather has warmed up.

Thanks for reading, also do you like my new layout?

Holwa x

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First Impressions: Bondi Sands Liquid Gold Review

I’m a complete fake tan noob. But it’s gotten to the point where I’m either Casper the friendly ghost white or sunburnt red in Summer so I’ve decided it’s time to fake it. I’ve had dalliances with gradual tan (namely Dove Summer Glow – hello orange legs) in the past but I’ve never gotten up the courage, patience or willpower to go through the whole exfoliate, moisturise, shave, exfoliate, tan, be sticky for eight hours over night then wash off routine. Enter the brand new Bondi Sands tan product Liquid Gold.

Bondi Sands Liquid Gold Review
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