Sunday, 29 May 2011

Beauty Staples

Prompted by the divine Loveaudrey, here are my current products in regular use on my dressing table!

Shampoo: Lavera Mango Milk shampoo. This is a natural, sulfate free shampoo that smells absolutely amazing. It is designed for coloured hair, to protect from fade and damage. Since starting to use this my scalp has stopped itching and my hair is better behaved.

Conditioner: Lavera Mango Milk conditioner. This stuff is magic. It is thick and more like a balm than a traditional conditioner - a little goes a looooong way. My hair drinks this stuff up and it smells amazing too.

Styling products: I am loving the Naked styling range, in particular the Heat Protecting Spray and Frizz Free serum. I made the decision a few months back to ditch the silicones in my hair care products and these are the best styling products that I have ever used. My hair is super manageable. I have also bought Boots Essentials Hair Putty to use (as I can't get the Naked one in Boots it seems) which is also silicone free, but I have yet to use it!

Shower gel: I don't actually use shower gels anymore, I don't like the way they dry my skin and I have yet to find one that doesn't, plus I like the portability of soap bars. I've found a brilliant brand called Bentleys, who make fully Soil Association certified bars of soap, in amazing fragrances. I've tried most of them now I think, and have the final scent left waiting for me to finish this bar. The current one is vanilla, clove and orange oil, and has a little bit of grit for mild exfoliation. The smell is so so comforting. Previous scents have been vanilla, calendula and lavender, and grapefruit and seaweed. Next up is honey and oatmeal. The best thing about these bars is they last for a long long time and the lather is rich and creamy. I use it for shaving with now as well and it is as good, if not better than anything I have ever used for shaving before.

Body Moisturiser: I currently make my own, by mixing organic aloe vera gel with Boots Botanics Organic Orange Oil and Jojoba Body oil. It is working really well for my skin - the aloe vera is great for soothing my psorasis, and has helped my spotty back.

Deodorant: Green People Aloe Vera deodorant: I haven't used an anti perspirant since I worked for Lush about 6 years ago, when I started using their Krystal deodorant. I was in love with the chamomile one with the yellow wax, then they discontinued it a few years back. Since then, I have tried a succession of different deodorants, but this is by far the best I have found.

Fake tan: I've started using this just because I feel better about my legs when I do. I'm currently using St Tropez Gradual Tanner in light/medium, but I cannot make it not streak. I'm going to try something different, so I am open to suggestions!!

Eye make up remover: Boots Botanics Organic Olive Oil Eye Make Up remover. When I was younger and less natural in my product selection, I used to use a Chanel cleanser that started out as a cream and when it had done its job turned really liquidy.  The Boots Botanics one I use does a similar thing, which I really really love about it. I actually use this on my whole face at night, because it's cleansing properties are amazing. The best bits for me: removing my super dooper waterproof mascara (more on that in a bit) and the fact that you can rinse it off with warm water.

Cleanser: In the morning in the shower I use Weleda Almond Soothing Cleansing Lotion. Its wonderfully soothing and brilliantly effective.

Moisturiser: Weleda Almond Soothing Facial Cream - I really love this, it is perfect for my very sensitive skin. Moisturising without being greasy and brilliant under make up.

Foundation: MAC Studio Sculpt in NW15. I've been using MAC foundations for a long time now, and this is definitely my favourite.

Concealer: MAC Studio Sculpt in NW15 for blemishes, and MAC Select Moisturecover in NW20 for under eyes. The former is a wonderful consistency, and sinks in the skin with little blending. The latter is the perfect texture for under eyes and adds just the right concealing for dark circles.

Powder: I've just switched to MAC Select Sheer Pressed Powder from the MSF Natural, because although I love the finish on the MSF Natural (perfect skin), I have never been happy with the way it behaves on my skin. Me and minerals just don't seem to get on! I've only used the Pressed Powder a couple of times so far, but I'm really really happy with the results.

Blush: I have about 8 MAC blushers, but my favourites have to be Pink Swoon and Pinch o Peach. Cubic is fast becoming a staple, but I do tend to mix up my blushers depending on what eye make up or lipstick I'm wearing.

Bronzer: Not a product I wear much, but I do like it in the summer sometimes. I have never found anything that suits my skin and achieves the look I want better than 17 Bronzing Pearls in Light. I've been using them since they launched the lighter colour about 15 years ago.

Highlighter: Again, not something I wear that often, but I do love MAC's MSFs in Petticoat and Blonde (both limited editions). Petticoat is definitely my favourite of the two, with its peachy base and flashes of mauve.

Eyeshadows: Always always MAC. I have about 40 of their pan eyeshadows, and about 20 pigments, in a range of different colours. My choices usually depend on my mood, but my staples are Brule e/s, for all over base and highlight, Naked, Dark Soul and Sweet Sienna pigments, and Aquadisiac e/s.

Mascara: I am a huge and devoted Chanel fan here. I start with Chanel Mascara base (which they disconned for a brief period just before Christmas before relaunching this month with the replacement, which is the same product but with a different brush. Hooray!) because it nourishes, protects and lengthens. Then I layer on the Chanel Inimitable Waterproof Noir mascara, which gives me spectacular dolls eye lashes.

Lipstick: My favourite has to be MAC Cremecup. I even have a back up. I've also rediscovered my love of Pink Plaid. My perfect red is Viva Glam I. Hang-Up is my new favourite wine colour.

Lipgloss: I'm definitely not a gloss fan, but sometimes I like a little bit. MAC's Boy Bait from their Cremesheen Glass range is wonderful for adding texture and fullness to a nude lip.

Nail Colour: I have quite a nice collection of nail polishes right now, and I always struggle to choose one when I want to paint my nails. Out of all of these, OPI's Lincoln Park After Dark is one of my absolute favourites. Recent favourites include another from OPI, Lucerne-tainly Look Marvellous from the Swiss collection, a lovely gunmetal metallic; Chanel's Black Pearl and China Glaze's Ahoy!.

So, passing the gauntlet on... link me to your lists!!

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