3 Essentials For Very Oily Skin

Now that its approaching summer, I'm finding my skin is starting to get oilier. My t-zone in particular becomes very oily. Finding products that don't completely slide off your face by midday isn't easy. I've tried a lot of products over the years and I've found a few that have good staying power.

Face powder is an essential for any oily girls out there. I've used so many powders and I dread to think about how much money I've spent trying to find a decent one. These days I swear by loose powder as an initial setting powder - you can't take it with you on the go but it looks very natural and doesn't cake like a lot of pressed powders do. My current powder is the Ben Nye Translucent Face Powder in fair. I actually meant to buy the neutral set powder and somehow picked the wrong one but its a fairly good product and brilliant value for money. You get a whopping 45 grams of powder in the pot, so it'll last for ages. It does a good job of controlling oil but for me, the Vichy loose powder combined with Revlon's color stay foundation is the ultimate dream team in terms of complete oil control - I can go most of the day without blotting which is normally unheard of for me. I'd probably opt for that one in future but the Ben Nye one is good for slightly oily skin types. 

For my eyelids, a primer is a completely essential product. I used to the like the Urban Decay Primer Potion but I found it left my shadow looking really dry, so now I tend to use a MAC Paint Pot. I have nubile, which was limited edition but I'd say painterly might be similar. I use a shadow or another cream shadow over the top and it stays put really well.

In summer, I like to opt for a powder blush as I find they normally have better staying power (it does depend on the brand though). I love Illamasqua's powder blushes as they're highly pigmented, soft to touch and blend well. I like the shade 'tremble' for spring/summer - its a light peachy pink that's super pretty!

Do you have any essentials for oily skin?

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5 Must Haves Under £10!

The high street (and internet) is an amazing place for finding an abundance of brilliant beauty buys. Most of my favourite products are what I consider to be budget buys. These 5 products have become must haves in my beauty routine and all of them are under £10. 

The ones I've mentioned before are the NYX Blush in taupe. This is a brilliant contour powder for pale skins or a blush for darker skin tones. The powder is really soft and blendable, which is why it works so well for contouring. I swatched it in this retro post here. 
Another product I've mentioned briefly before are the Maybelline Colour Elxir Glosses. These seemed to make a small impact in the beauty blogging world but they're not a product that gets mentioned too much anymore. I think these are a brilliant gloss for £6.99. Not sticky, feel hydrating and add a good pigment of colour. 

Makeup Revolution need no introduction and their Naked Chocolate palette* is one of the best budget shadow palette I've used. At £7.99, its a little pricier than some of their other offerings but the quality of these is better. You also get 14 shadows and 2 highlight powders - I'd highly recommend these shades if you're after a lower priced alternative to the Urban Decay Naked palettes. I'll have swatches of this soon in an upcoming post. 

My hair is pretty frazzled at the moment - I really need a hair cut but whilst I find a good hairdresser, I've been using the Morrocan Oil Intense Hydrating Mask which really does a good job of making my locks feel softer and smoother. This mask comes in a small 75ml tube but as the texture of the mask is really thick, you only need to use once a week at most. You can purchase it in a higher ml but this size is really good if you want to try it out before splashing out on the full size. It's also a good size for taking away on holiday with you, if you want to protect your hair from damage from the sun, sea etc. 

Finally, a mention to a new micellar discovery. I rely on micellar waters to remove my makeup at the end of a long day and I've been using the Soap & Glory Drama Clean 5 in 1 Micellar Cleansing Water* for the past week. I like this one as it removes every last drop of makeup. It's gentle on the eye area and doesn't leave any tacky or sticky feeling after use. The only downside for me is the scent as it well, smells like salad. It's a scent you'll either love or hate, I'd prefer a more fruity smelling water but thats my taste. However, if you're looking for a good micellar water that's affordable (this one is £6) then this is a good bet!

What are your favourite budget products?

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3 Foundations for Pale/Oily Skin Types

I've been using a few new foundations recently - all of which are ideal for pale skintones like me. Finding a good foundation that's light enough for my porcelain skin can sometimes be a challenge but I'm fairly happy with the colour matches of these three.
Everyone has been raving about the new Loreal 24 Hour Mattifying Infallible Foundation and luckily it lives up to its expectations. I've been wearing (porcelain shade 10) a lot lately as it really does hit the mark on several aspects. Despite being labelled as full coverage, I'd say its more medium. You do need extra concealer on noticeable blemishes but it surprisingly feels fairly light on the skin. It blends really well, both with fingers or a brush and lasts fairly well throughout the day. I do need to blot once or twice during the day but I have a really oily t-zone. Packaging wise, this tube is perfect. The nozzle dispenses just enough foundation and the tube ensures you can get the last drops of foundation out. I'm not a fan of products that claim to last 24 hours (lets face it, who wears their makeup that long) but for normal to oily skin types, it is definitely one of the best foundations at the drugstore/highstreet.

At high end level, I've been using Dior Star Foundation*. It looks a little two tone in the bottle above (I forgot to shake the bottle) but it's a decent shade match. I wear shade 010 ivory which is just a touch too dark for me but I can get away with it. Unlike the Loreal mattifying foundation, Dior Star leaves a semi matte finish on the skin (slightly dewy but not overly so). It offers medium coverage and blends well. This foundation has good oil control. Not quite as good as the Loreal offering but definitely better than some others that I've tried. I really like the radiant finish as I find my complexion looks brighter and more healthy. I havent heard too much about Dior Star despite it being a relatively new addition to Dior's lineup. The glass bottle with pump makes it easy to dispense and the foundation itself is one of the better high end products I've tried. I can see this suiting a range of skin types from slightly dry to oily. If you're in the mood for trying a new higher end foundation then this is one to look at. 

Back to a more budget foundation, this one is the new Maybelline Fit Me Matte & Poreless Foundation (not currently available in the UK). I use the shade porcelain which is slightly yellow toned but still a good colour match. Despite being labelled as matte and poreless, it isnt great on that front. However, there is something about this foundation I like. It feels very lightweight on the skin and as its yellow toned, it helps to tone down any redness in my skin. I mainly use this foundation on lazy days when I dont want to wear too much makeup. Oily skins will need to blot with this one but it tends to hold up throughout the day. The packaging is a downside as there's no pump here but foundation itself is decent. I purchased mine from eBay and I'd probably repurchase it if its released here in the UK. 

Have you tried any of these foundations?

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The Ultimate Ebay Makeup Brush List Under £3

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

I've purchased a few makeup brushes from Ebay and I'm always surprised by the quality. I've comprised a little list of some of the best unbranded brushes all under £3. Some of these I've purchased myself, some are on my wishlist and some I've ordered and waiting to arrive.

If you're looking for a cheap liner brush then (1) might be of interest to you. This one is just 99p with free shipping. For face brushes, there are a number of options here. (2) are various base brushes that can be used for foundation, powder, blush, concealer and contouring. (3) is ideal for contouring or concealer due to its tapered shape and is just £1.79 with free postage. I own (4) this four piece brush set and its insanely good for just £1.36. I mainly use these brushes for concealing but they're really soft and wash well too. My recent purchase is this 3d brush (5) which is a sigma dupe. I haven't given it a go yet but I'm interested to see how it works.

This (6) Ecotools dupe bamboo brush set is perfect for travelling as these are mini brushes with a small pouch. Finally, I've just ordered one of these sponges (7) as they're only 99p with free shipping. I don't normally use sponges but these would work well for contouring so I'm keen to give it a go!

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Free Design Resources for Bloggers

Whether you want to improve your blog design or your images, you might be interested in finding some free resources to use. I've had a few people ask how I make my blog images, so I figured I'd cover this in this post. Everything I use is completely free and the good news is that it's really easy to use. Here are some resources that you may find useful as well as the ones I use.

I always use free fonts on my blog images. There are eight here to download - I'd also recommend dafont, fontsquirrel and fontspace.

Free handwritten fonts

If you're looking for handwritten style fonts then you'll love these. These would look great on blog images or on other design projects.

Free laurel wreath graphics

I love these graphics. They would look great on a blog header or wishlist.

Black and gold seamless patterns

These seamless patterns are ideal for using in your blog images or for your blog design.

Free stock photos

I usually use royalty free stock photos for my blog images. I've linked to several sites where you can find them in this post. Once you download the photo you want to use, you can modify it in a free photo editing site. I use picmonkey and just write text over the top. With picmonkey, you can use your own fonts as well as the custom fonts on the site.

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How To Make Extra Money Online

Money making isn't a topic that's regularly discussed on a lot of UK beauty and lifestyle blogs. I'm all for ways to make a bit of extra cash and there are several ways you can make money via the internet (no, I'm not referring to anything dodgy!). It's worth noting that you need to declare any extra income to the tax man. I'm not sure how this works in other countries but in the UK, you have three months to declare your income and you'll need to fill in a tax return between now and the end of the year (until January 31st if you're completing your return online). I'm just about to fill in my first tax return soon, so I'll cover the basics in an upcoming post. For now, here are a few ways to earn some extra cash (global sites are included here too). Click on the bold text to be taken straight to the blog post. 

5 real ways to earn money online

This is my other site which covers everything from freelance work to moneysaving. I'm currently in the middle of rebranding but head over there to check out this post with some links to survey sites and other platforms.

13 places to sell your photos online

If you're a keen photographer then take a look at this post

10 apps to save and earn money

If you have a good internet connection on your phone (and a decent monthly internet allowance) then these apps might be for you. I've only head of a few of these and I think some may be US only but you might want to give them a go - I'll cover some that are UK based very soon.

Do you have great instagram images? Here are two sites you could use to sell those images for extra £££'s

Home businesses you can start with no money

Not all of these are businesses but there are some sites here that you can use to sell things, take surveys, freelance and earn online.

Sites that pay you fast

If you're looking for a quick payout then these sites are for you. I recommend having a paypal account for quick paying sites and platforms.

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7 Bloggers Who Have Shared Their Blog Earnings

Following on from my post on realistic ways to earn money from blogging, here are 7 bloggers who have shared their blog earnings. Personally, I find these posts really interesting and helpful as it gives you a realistic idea of how you can earn money via your blog. It also demonstrates that hard work really does pay off. Obviously, you and I are unlikely to consider monestising our blogs in exactly the same way as these bloggers but its definitely something to think about. 

Making sense of cents

A monthly statement as well as a year in review.

By Regina

Regina's blog is one of my favourites for everything blogging related. This income report is really easy to understand - I like that she goes into specifics about what aspects she has implemented to help with her income. 

A look at how money is earned from a food blog - this post shows traffic numbers and sources too, which is really interesting!

Retired by 40

A blog income report that is easy to understand with stats. I like that Gretchen has included her goals too!

Fitness fashionista

A monthly report with stats - I'd never heard of some of these sources to make income and if you're based in the US, I'd definitely consider some of these options.

Pulling curls

This is a great report if you're starting to monetise your blog. Hilary also includes some aspects that increased her income in a 3 month period.

Market your creativity

If you're thinking of creating a business via your blog then this one might be for you.

What I've learned from reading blog income reports

The majority of bloggers earn their income via many streams - most from adsense, blog networks, youtube, private ads, sponsored content etc.
A lot of bloggers also sell ebooks, blog coaching, online classes, own etsy businesses as a way of upping their revenue. As these blogs show, you dont need to be gaining millions of hits to make money from your blog. I think a lot comes down to trial and error, finding what works for you as well as gaining a loyal readership. Aspects, such as Pinterest, email and finding ways to grab a readers attention also seem to play pretty big parts too.

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Tips For Dealing With Anxiety

I haven't made any secret about the fact that I suffer with anxiety. I know a lot of bloggers say that but I think sharing the details allows us to help each other and its reassuring to learn that you're not alone. I am learning to manage my anxiety these days and I thought I'd share a few things that I do to try and cope. A few things that have helped me are

* Going for walks
I've mentioned this before but going for short walks really helped me when my anxiety was at its worst. Getting out and about in the fresh air really helps to clear your mind and refresh yourself. I'd recommend getting a friend or relative to go with you if you're feeling especially anxious. Just going for a short five or ten minute walk every day really works in the long run. You might not feel better at first but stick with it and you'll feel a difference after a few weeks!

By distractions, I'm referring to things such as reading, listening to music and blogging. Anything that can help to take your mind off feeling nervous and suffering the effects that anxiety can bring - nausea, tiredness, headaches etc. Writing this blog has really helped me to cope as its something I can put all my energy into. If I start feeling a bit wobbly, I try to focus my mind on blogging and thinking about upcoming posts - I usually find it helps somewhat. Any kind of hobby or interest that you can spend your free time focused on instead of those anxious feelings really makes a difference.

*Self help books
These are by no means a miracle worker but some books I've found that have helped are 'Feel the fear and do it anyway' by Susan Jeffers and The confidence gap by Russ Harris. I'll have a post soon on the confidence gap as it really helped to change my way of thinking about certain things but both books are a good starting point for anyone struggling with anxiety and/or low confidence. 

When it comes to medication then obviously you need to consult a doctor as they will be able to advise you properly. I personally take both anxiety and anti-depressants daily which have made a difference. I'd also consider supplements too. I've just started taking a vitamin B supplement (B vitamins help with the nervous system) daily - I purchased mine from Feel Unique. There's also supplements, such as bimuno prebiotics* that give an immune system boost by increasing healthy bacteria in your body. A study has shown that a certain pre-biotic can aid factors relating to anxiety - you can find out more here.

*Improving your diet
I'm sure most people generally find that they feel much better when they eat healthier. My anxiety is normally heightened when I'm feeling ill, so I'm trying to boost my health by eating better and drinking more water. Food, such as wholegrains, berries, almonds and dark chocolate are meant to help reduce anxiety. I've personally found that avoiding certain things, such as alcohol and cutting down on caffeine has made a difference too. 

*Products sent c/o Bimuno - all opinions/content is my own!

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5 More Of The Best Free Blog Templates/Designs

Following on from my previous post on some of the best free blog templates on the web, I thought I'd search for a few more. Design is an important aspect of any blog but not everyone has the budget to spend a lot of money on a professional template. I used several free templates when I first started blogging - some by the sites mentioned below. You can tweak the designs using html codes if you know how (Google is your best friend for this!). I hope you like my selections.

Sunset Boulevard

One of my favourite free blog templates. I would definitely use this if I needed a free design. I've used blogger candy in the past and I really recommend looking through her designs as there is something for everyone. You can find this template here.

Putih Pekat

This is a really nice template for anyone looking for a sleek but simple design. It's ideal for those with great photography or if you want to attract readers with clean images. You can find it here


A chic responsive blog design, Persona is ideal for those looking for a clean bit effective template. A really lovely free design. Find it here.


If you're looking for a magazine style template then this one might be for you. This is for blogger but lovely templates also have some free wordpress designs too. You can find Enpine here.


This one column blogger template would suit those looking for a minimalistic blog design. It's ideal for those who are less focused on images and more on content. You can find it here.

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On The Sidebar Feb/March 2015

I've been lucky to have some fabulous ladies on the sidebar this Feb/March (this post is slightly late going up) and I've found some new favourite blogs in the process. Here is a little more about the girls behind the blogs!
*I've recently switched up my advertising packages but prices still start from just £4 - you can find out more information here*

Hey, I'm Adele, I'm a 22 year old living in the South of London who uses writing as an escape from reality and a way to help deal with all my problems. I love turning negative things in life into positive blog posts to help others out there. Ire in my short life so if I can help anyone in any way possible then I will feel like I've achieved something. You will find me with a cup of green tea and a notebook and a pen by my side. I write at the blog adelesmith.co.uk and my Twitter and Instagram are under adelesmith_.
Hi, everyone. I'm Vanessa Morgan. For over ten years, I've been snapping pictures of all the cats I meet during my travels around the world. Traveling Cats is the collection of those cat pictures,arranged per country and city. I also accept submissions from readers. When I'm not taking pictures of cats, you can find me writing books and screenplays, attending film festivals, or reading a book.

Hey! I'm Holly, a seventeen year old blogger from Scotland with the aspirations of becoming a journalist and author one day. I have been accepted into university to study just that, so you never know, maybe one day it will come true! My blog is primarily a beauty blog, but more and more book reviews and lifestyle posts have been creeping in recently to join the rambling about my new favourite lipstick. I can usually be found curled up under my duvet, a cup of coffee (milk and one sugar) in hand as I type away on my laptop. I've been blogging for quite some time now but have only recently started taking it a bit more seriously and putting a lot more effort in. I love to chat to fellow bloggers so pop on over to my blog and read till your heart's content. I hope you like reading it as much as I love writing it!

Hi there. My names Fran and as the name probably gives away, I blog at http://frannymac.com. Originally a country mouse, I took the plunge and moved to West London. You'll normally find me with either my camera, a cup of tea or a good book in hand. I write about the things I love most, namely makeup, clothes and going on adventures. I love to meet other bloggers, so come say hi!

Twitter - https://twitter.com/franmcmonagle
 Bloglovin - https://www.bloglovin.com/blogs/frannymac-4401627
Instagram - http://www.frannymac.com/p/instagram.html

Hi, I'm Laura and I am a Brighton-based girl with a love for fashion, beauty, cooking and eating what I cook!  My blog is where I like to share all my adventures and loves, with an added bit of rambling every now and then. As well as blogging, I also work in the events industry and I'm currently organising my own wedding! Other hobbies include drinking a lot of hot chocolate and spending an unhealthy amount of time on Instagram. 

blog - http://www.whatlauradidnext.co.uk/
twitter - https://twitter.com/lauraaimee
instagram - https://instagram.com/whatlaurasaw/
facebook - https://www.facebook.com/WhatLauraDidNext
pinterest - https://www.pinterest.com/whatlauradidnex/

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5 Beauty Hero's

There's always a few products that you can rely on to do a good job in the time of need. I've tried various products over the years and there are a few I always go back to. These are the ones that work instantly and really do a great job of helping my skin/makeup to look better. 
I've managed to narrow down five of my favourite beauty hero's and here are the ones that made the cut.

This is definitely one of the best mascaras I've used. I still feel like I'm searching for my holy grail mascara but this comes close. It lengthens, adds volume and definition, doesn't smudge or clump. It isn't cheap by any means but it's one I would happily repurchase. The original volume mascara is the one I turn to - I received the Hypnose drama version for Christmas and its awful (I'll have a post on my beauty misses very soon!), so I'll be sticking to the original.

I received this at the end of last year and its worked wonders on my skin. Even though my skin is oily, it gets very dehydrated in winter. The Aromatherapy Associates Rose Radiance Skin Serum is an ultra light cream/gel that absorbs instantly to hydrate, smooth and add radiance. My skin feels much softer since I started using this and I've had less dryness. 

This moisturiser is one of my ultimate must haves. This instantly transforms my dry legs into hydrated, glowing and super soft pins. The only downside of this cream is the smell as its quite medicinal, however the benefits definitely outweigh the negative. I've been through a few tubes of this stuff and I tend to use it every summer. You can usually find it on offer for half price - you can currently buy it for £8.50 at Superdrug here in a kit with the dry hand fix (its normally around £10.50 on its own).

This balm originally came in a beauty box but its honestly one of the best balms I've used. A blend of raw shea, beeswax and coconut, it smell/tastes good too. I love that it actually nourishes and smoothes the lips. I find a lot of balms tend to sit on the lips without really doing anything but this one is different. I always use this lip balm before lipstick to make my lips feel moisturised and I find my lipstick sits slightly better on my lips too. Its slightly more expensive than some balms but totally worth the money!

The best eye cream ever!This is my holy grail of creams. I get dry skin under my eyes and this is the one product that has made such a difference. I know a few people rave about it but this eye cream really is that good!It hydrates, smooths and makes my eye concealer look better. The texture is slightly odd as the cream transforms into a slightly watery texture when it comes into contact with the skin but I like that it doesn't feel too heavy despite being incredibly moisturising. 

Do you have any beauty hero's?

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Most Loved in March 2015

I'm not sure how we're in April already!This year is just whizzing by so fast! I had quite a few favourite products that I loved in March, so I wanted to share them all. Apologies about my photo quality - I really need to spend some time trying to up my game but things are pretty hectic at the moment. 
In March, I purchased the Glamour Latest in Beauty Box - this box was seriously incredible. There were several full sized products, including Rimmel's new Oh My Gloss, a Revlon gel nail polish and topcoat, a Nuxe mask, Kiko shadow stick, Moroccan Oil Mask (deluxe sample size), Beauty UK brow palette and Model co cream blush. You also received a year's subscription to Glamour magazine - both print and digital versions. For £16.99 and free delivery, its a massive bargain - its still in stock here. Speaking of Glamour magazine, I thought I'd mention this subscription deal as its a great offer - you get three magazines for £1 and a bundle of Schwarzkopf products free. You can find the deal here. Just make sure you cancel after the three issues and you wont be charged any extra!

Makeup wise, I've really enjoyed using this Makeup Revolution Iconic Pro 1 Palette.* For £6,99, there are 16 shadows and a double ended brush - I'll be reviewing this soon in a separate post but overall I find it to be better quality then the some of their other palettes. In March, I also loved the Loreal Infallible Mattifying Foundation in 10 porcelain. This is a really great foundation for oily skins. I'm going to write a post soon on some of my favourite foundations and this one will definitely be in there - its long lasting, has good coverage and controls oil. I've also been using the Clinique Cheek Pop in plum pop (swatched here). It has one of the best formula's I've tried for a cream blush and wears really well throughout the day. 

When it comes to skincare, I normally test out a product for a few weeks until I feel like I've seen any results. However, the Bee Good Honey & Wild Flax Daily Moisturiser* is something else. I've only been using this for around a week but I really feel this is one of those products that is an instant wow. It keeps my skin hydrated, balanced, soothed and makes my makeup sit better. I use this in the morning as it instantly absorbs and makes my skin feel fresh. This isn't a super cheap moisturiser but you do get a free lipbalm when you spend over £10 on the beegood site.

This year, I'm trying to read more books - I'm failing hard right now but I have recently read The Girl on The Train by Paula Hawkins. This is an amazing book! I don't really read many thrillers but this had me gripped from the first page and I stayed up until about four in the morning to finish it. There's also a good twist at the end too! If you're looking for a new book to read then give this a shot!

Finally, I managed to splash out on a pair of trainers. I'm trying/failing to get into fitness and trainers were my first port of call. I've spotted the Nike Roshe Run all over pinterest and I like that they're a combination of being practical and stylish. After a bit of googling, I found my size (six) at Footlocker for £40. These were in the kids section and £30 cheaper than an adult size six. Crazy! These fit absolutely fine, so if you have smallish feet then always check the kids section as you'll save a lot of money in the process!

What have you been loving this month?

p.s I'm now offering various advertising packages - check out my page to find out more!

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