I have to say I'm really excited that Spring/Summer is finally underway! I'm already loving the lighter, milder evenings and I just have so much to look forward to over the next couple of months. Obviously I've taken the new season as an opportunity to update my makeup bag a little and have tried a few new products; some of them were winners, others not so much! I thought I'd share with you the latest additions and whether I rate them or not. I was also kindly sent several things by Fragrance Direct, so for these products I've put their price and the RRP in brackets because they sell some of my favourite brands for that bit less (which always helps).
Urban Decay Naked Skin One and Done Hybrid Complexion Cream | £25
It was love at first application with this! I have really gotten into using a lighter base for day-to-day wear this year, so decided to pick this up when I had a Feel Unique discount code. I have the shade Medium Dark (I wear Medium Dark Warm in the concealer) and it's a decent match though it's a little darker than my current skin tone and slightly more orange-based than yellow-based, however I'm sure it'll be spot on come Summer. It's neither dewy nor matte in finish; I'd describe it as Satin as it gives me a glowing but shine-free finish. I'm actually really impressed with the coverage. I was expecting it to be less than a tinted moisturiser from the name, however you can actually build this to a good light-medium coverage. I absolutely love how natural but flawless this looks one the skin - think a more lightweight Nars Sheer Glow. I was also impressed with it's wear-time as I don't feel the need to powder my t-zone when I use this and I don't notice it wearing away in the usual places (my nose and under the eyes) during the day. All in all this is well worth picking up and might just have stolen the crown for my go-to Summer base!
L'Oreal Nude Magique Cushion Foundation | £9.99
I snatched this up the second it hit the shelf in my local Boots as I've heard so much about it. I was pretty confused because it said it was £9.99 online but there was no offer indicated and £14.99 in-store (a difference of 1/3), also the shades online are listed only as names with no numbers and in-store they're only numbers but no names (and additionally the number is only on a sticker so the majority of them had come off and it was really difficult to tell what's what). However it's since been released through Superdrug, who have made things a bit clearer, and hopefully by the time this is posted Boots will have fixed the confusion. I picked up Shade 11 Amber which falls into my usual drugstore trap of being slightly too dark and nowhere near yellow enough in tone - I really need to just stop bothering! To be honest, at £10-15 it isn't even that cheap so I won't be picking up a different shade. The finish is quite nice - it's healthy-looking but not overly greasy. It's pretty light coverage but can be built on and the wear-time is decent. Overall though, I have much better foundations, even just in this post so I'd recommend the Clinique or Urban Decay over it. It's also easy to get discount codes to purchase either of those for less, as I did, so you may as well spend £5 or so more for a superior product.
Clinique Chubby in the Nude Foundation Stick | £23
This is a real surprise love for me! It was on 10% off in Debenhams, plus I had £5 on my BeautyClub card so I was only paying about £15 for it and thought 'why not?' There weren't that many shades so I wasn't convinced I'd find a match. I was just curious about it, wandered up to the counter and swatched the only yellow-based shade they seemed to have and by some miracle Grandest Golden Neutral was perfect. It's pretty light coverage and I love it for those minimal makeup days. Even if you're very much a fuller or medium coverage fan, I think this is so handy for just popping into your bag for on-the-go touch-ups. I feel like it has a very natural finish and will kind of mimic your skin or whatever primer you're wearing. It isn't greasy or dewy at all but I wouldn't describe it as matte either. It doesn't have the best longevity in the world (it has broken down a little on my nose by around the 6-hour mark) but it's decent and given the packaging I'd happily throw it in my bag to touch-up later. Overall I really rate it and it's perfect for this time of year!
Urban Decay Afterglow 8-Hour Powder Highlighter in Sin | £19
When I went to get my click and collect with the Clinique foundation I was given a £5 in-store voucher with my order. I'd had my eye on this since I first heard about the Urban Decay Summer collection so took the opportunity to get my hands on it. Although it's a golden shade, it has a cooler undertone than the types of highlighters I usually go for. It's a little lighter and icier and has a slightly iridescent sheen. When I first applied this I didn't realise how pigmented it was and definitely went overboard! It's one to be applied with a light hand but if you do then it's very pretty on the skin. It has a smooth formula but isn't as creamy as say the Becca Pressed Shimmering Skin Perfectors.
KIKO Artist Illuminating Pen Pearl Cushion Highlighter in 01 Virtuous Gold | £8.90
I love a dewy liquid highlight for this time of year and this is a really pretty, unique option. It comes out of this spongy applicator and applies very subtly to the skin. It's a very light gold shade which has this gorgeous pearly sheen. It's a natural option but I'm really enjoying it for day-to-day wear.
MAC Mineralise Blush in Lovejoy* | £19.50 (RRP £22)
This is just the perfect 'do it all' cheek product; it's a blusher that's gorgeous bronze shade with a subtle gold highlight running through it. It has enough slightly pinky-peach colour in it to be a blusher and it's what I reach for when I just want a really natural look on my cheeks or I'm in a rush and just want something I can easily throw on without having to go in with three different products. It's nicely pigmented but so easy to blend out and work with. I also find it doesn't go patchy on my skin throughout the day, which is a deal-maker for me.
KIKO Flawless Fusion Bronzer in 05 Biscuit | £12.90
I'm such a big fan of KIKO's limited edition (and now discontinued) Rebel Romantic bronzer that I stockpiled multiple backups when it went into the sale! However I thought I'd give one of their other, permanent offerings a go. This is a really good size and has a matte finish (though I think it may have the tiniest bit of sheen). I tried one of the blushers from the range and although it was matte it just gave me the most gorgeous, luminous glow to my cheeks. KIKO is one of the few brands I can quite happily order online without checking it out in store. I randomly went for the shade 05 Biscuit, which is the second-to-darkest. The shade is actually really similar to the outer ring of the Rebel Romantic one I have, which was a good start. It's a really lovely option if you're after a bronzer that's a nice balance between cool and warm; you can use this for bronzing or for a very subtle, natural contour. All in all I do still prefer my Rebel Romantic (maybe the lilac perfecting powder in the centre of it really does make all the difference) but this is still a great option. I find it blends out really easily on my skin and doesn't look patchy. The pigmentation is pretty much perfect - it's not too intense but definitely shows up without me having to layer it up.
Makeup Geek Eyeshadow Pans in Rapunzel, Chickadee, Preppy, Cherry Cola, Americano, Tiki Hut, Wild West and Brownie Points | £4.95 each
These aren't the most obvious Spring/Summer shades but I picked up a few that were new from this season as well as some of the older shades (inspired mainly by LPage Beauty) and thought I'd round them all up together! I love Makeup Geek eyeshadows and I've picked up quite a few mattes because their formula is one of best out there. They're just so creamy, easy to blend and pigmented that they honestly beat eyeshadows I have that are twice their price or even more! The shimmers are also gorgeous and smooth, though this time round I only picked up one. Makeup Geek also one of the most long-wearing eyeshadow formulas I've ever come across.
I don't think Rapunzel is new but I've just never personally come across it. It's a very light, slightly yellow-toned gold with a really subtle sheen to it. I think it'll be great, warmer alternative to Shimma Shimma. Chickadee is a really warm, almost sunshine-yellow matte crease shade. Preppy is a muted mid-brown matte with a hint of mustard. I picked up Cherry Cola as a slightly more brown and muted alternative to Bitten; it's a deep purple matte shade with a hint of dark brown. I actually didn't pick up Americano for ages as I thought it would be really similar to Mocha (which I already have) based on BeautyBay's website. However it's not at all! It's a deep matte colour that's somewhere between a muted purple with a hint of cool-toned brown.
Onto the new shades for Spring/Summer 2016! Tiki Hut is a warm mid-tone brown matte with a slightly yellow undertone. Wild West is one of my favourites as it's just such a unique purple-red-brown matte shade. Brownie Points is a taupe matte with a tiny hint of cool-toned purple. With the exception of Tiki Hut, these seem a little more sheer than my other shades but that kind of works for me as a crease colour.
Clinique Chubby Stick Lip Colour Balm in Mega Melon* | £15.99 (RRP £17)
I'm a big fan of Clinique's Intense Chubby Sticks and although I had one of the originals in a nude colour - it was a little bit 'meh' and didn't really add much for me personally. I decided to try one of the more vibrant shades because I think that a sheer formula is the perfect way to play around with some brighter tones. I picked out this pinky-orange colour that's pretty much exactly the same colour as a cantaloupe melon and has a slight shimmer to it (don't worry, this doesn't translate to the lips - it just helps them look a little more glossy without any stickiness). I actually really love this! I thought I'd go out on a limb and try something new and I'm very glad I did as it's just the perfect lip shade and formula for the warmer months.
KIKO Creamy Comfort Lip Liner in 303 Tea Rose | £5.90
I was honestly trying since Christmas to get my hands on this so was really excited when it arrived. It's a little more vibrant and less muted than I'd expected but still so gorgeous for Spring. It does have an extremely creamy formula which means you can easily wear it on its own. However the downside is that it's missing that waxiness that helps your lip products to last longer - it definitely doesn't have the longevity but it is very comfortable and non-drying on the lips.
Gerard Cosmetics Hydra Matte Liquid Lipsticks in 1995 & Everything Nice | £9.50
These were purchases I immediately felt guilty about (though they were on buy-one-get-one-half-price!) however as soon as I tried them, I was so glad I picked them up! I really like the Gerard Cosmetics liquid lipstick formula as, though 'hydrating' is probably an exaggeration, they're so non-drying. They have a slightly tacky finish that's completely matte and doesn't transfer. They're also just so long-lasting - I cant get a good 6 hours of wear out of them before needing to touch up. These shades are absolutely beautiful too - I probably wouldn't say they were that Spring-y but they are new for this season. Everything Nice is a very warm-toned brown nude that's pretty much perfect for me. 1995 is similar but deeper with a more plummy-mauve tone. I actually have it in the standard lipstick, which I like but I never quite got on with the formula. I'm not sure if I got a bad batch but it's just really 'solid'. Either way, I'm really please to have the beautiful colour in liquid form.
Bourjois Soufflé de Velvet Liquid Lipstick in 08 Carmeli Melo | £8.99
I'm decidedly undecided on this... I was really intrigued by the concept of a sheer matte lipstick so gave this a go. It's got a very strange, slightly slippery formula, which is unfortunately not hugely long-lasting. True to its description it has a soufflé texture that's matte in finish but has a sheer quality to it. It's really unlike anything I've tried before, but I'm not quite sure if that's in a good way! The shade I picked up is a lovely brown-toned red.
Revlon Ultra HD Matte Lip Colours in Seduction & Devotion | £8.99 each
This is another really unique liquid lipstick formula. It's actually fairly glossy but very opaque and pigmented when first applied. It does dry down a little more matte but I still think this is misnamed. The longevity is decent - more than a normal lipstick but less than a true matte liquid lipstick. Seduction is a brown-toned nude that's a little too close to my natural lip colour to really be flattering. I much prefer the muted pink tone of Devotion - it's a gorgeous shade for Spring.
Victoria's Secret Coconut Passion Fragrance Mist* | £8.99 (RRP £12.99)
When I go to Spain I'm definitely going to be spritzing this liberally and pretending I'm Candice Swanepoel on the beach to be honest! This is just that gorgeous, sensual blend of coconut and vanilla that lingers on the skin really nicely. It's a mixture of sweet (from the coconut) and a little bit heady (from the deep vanilla scent). Overall I just love this and even now it's getting me into the holiday mood.
Nuxe Prodigieux Le Parfum | £43.50
I'm honestly the biggest fan of Nuxe's products and the incredible scents they always seem to have, so it made sense to pick up their fragrance when I saw it on sale via Feel Unique. This is such a beautiful scent but so hard to describe! It's a really deep fragrance that just transports me to being on a beach somewhere amazing. Nuxe says it contains Orange Blossom, Magnolia and Vanilla. I also love how long-lasting this is and how I can still smell it when I get home after a long day.
Fresh Sugar Lychee Eau de Parfum | £39 (30ml)
This is a very different kind of seasonal scent to the Nuxe. I actually got it for Christmas but have only just started wearing fresher scents in the past month or so. First of all; I love the packaging. It isn't the most practical or travel-friendly but it's something different and looks really lovely on my shelf. It has Fresh's sweet but slightly citric Brown Sugar scent as a base, which is blended with the fruity Lychee notes. This lasts really nicely on my skin - I'd say it's a good 10 hours before it's properly faded.
Skincare & Everything Else
Crystal Clear Revitalising Tonic* | £21
As I've mentioned before, I've been really obsessed with face spritzes lately and this is a fantastic all-rounder. It's definitely a 'spray' as opposed to a light mist so I use it as a skincare product as opposed to over makeup. It's a really great all-rounder as it has the zinc to help reduce blemishes and enflamed skin but it's also packed full of vitamins to hydrate and plump out the skin (it's also free from alcohol). When the weather went cold again at the end of last month, my sensitive skin went back into meltdown and this is one of the products I feel helped get things back on track. It's slightly on the pricier side but you get so much product in there, however the down-side of that is that it isn't something you can easily travel with or just throw into your bag for an on-the-go refresh. It'd be great if they brought out a mini version as this really is a good do-it-all face spray.
EOS Lip Balm in Summer Fruits* | £3.99 (RRP £5.99)
I managed to completely use up the EOS lip balm I bought last year so decided to try a new flavour this time round. I find EOS lip balms so hydrating but lightweight on the lips so can easily be worn underneath a lipstick. I find the domed shape makes it so easy to apply lip balm on the go. This one has a really nice fruity scent and is perfect to throw in my handbag.
Barry M Coconut Infusion Nail Polishes in Starfish, Surfboard, Aloha & Tiki Hut | £4.99 each
I must admit I wasn't really sold on these when they first came out as I wasn't sure if it might be a bit of a gimmick. However I picked up one (Starfish initially) in a 3 for 2. As you may have guessed; I liked it enough to rush back out and pick up three more shortly after! The formula of these is so opaque that even the light shades only need one coat, which is something I rarely come across. They have a high-shine finish and even without a top and base coat, I get a good 3 days wear out of them (which is pretty good for my nails!) The shades I picked up are Starfish (a light beige nude), Surfboard (a light lilac), Aloha (a vibrant pink) and Tiki Hut (a deeper caramel nude).
Soap & Glory Shower Jellies in Original Pink & Sugar Crush* | £5.50 each
I'm always here for new Soap and Glory and the release of these two new products came at the perfect time as I was running low on my Rich and Foamous shower gel and wanted something a little more fresh for Spring and Summer. These have a really nice, thick formula that foams up amazingly - you really don't need much to get maximum bubbles! Of course I love the scents too: Sugar Crush is a gorgeous mojito scent that's my favourite for Summer and Original Pink is that classic Soap & Glory bergamot fragrance. I find the scents linger really nicely on the skin after and I often layer them up with the matching body butters.
Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse Or Golden Shimmer Dry Oil | £19
I picked this up with a Space NK discount because I had the Body Shop Honey Bronze shimmering dry oil last year. I didn't really need it but as I mentioned, I'm a big fan of the scent of Nuxe products and couldn't resist picking up the matching oil. It's a mini version, which makes it a little bit more travel-friendly. It's really nourishing and gives a gorgeous, subtle gold shimmer to the skin.
Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse Dry Oil | £17
My mum knows me far too well, as no sooner had I bought the shimmer version, she bought me the original back from her holiday! We really are on the same beauty wavelength... Anyway, this is pretty much the same but doesn't contain the shimmer. I think this will be really good for when the shimmer is a bit too much! It also means I can use this on my hair because I get pretty dry ends. It's really moisturising and can be used for so many different purposes. If you have dry skin then this is a must!
Mandara Spa Coconut and Mango Body Butter* | £5
I really love all of these body butters (check out the rest of them here) but my favourite for the warmer months looks like it's going to be Coconut and Mango! It's such a lovely, lightweight formula that absorbs into my skin beautifully but it's still so moisturising on my dry skin. It has a beautiful but light and fruity scent. It sort of reminds me of Pina Coladas and I just can't get enough of this fragrance!
So there you have my beauty updates for the new season! I really fancy trying out a new SPF this Spring/Summer too - if you have any recommendations (I tend to be a Vichy or La Roche-Posay kind of girl but I'm open to trying new things!) then please let me know in the comments as that's the one thing I'm yet to update. I'd say my favourites from the entire bunch are the Urban Decay One and Done, Nuxe fragrance, Barry M Starfish and MAC Lovejoy.
What have been your new purchases for Spring and Summer?
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*DISCLOSURE - PRODUCTS MARKED WITH AN ASTERISK ARE PR SAMPLES/GIFTS. ALL OPINIONS ARE MY OWN.
PLEASE VISIT MY DISCLOSURE PAGE FOR MORE INFORMATION.