The Cruelty Free Beauty Box Deluxe [August 2019]

The second edition of The Cruelty Free Beauty Box Deluxe has arrived and it is, again, another delight! You can read about the first edition in my previous post, here.

I’ve been waiting for my box as soon as the shipping e-mail was sent. It arrived last Friday and I couldn’t wait to open it.

Before the shipping, I ordered myself a Natura sheet mask as I loved the one I received in one of my previous boxes (read about it in this post). One great thing that The Cruelty Free Beauty Box offers is that you can order items on their website to be shipped with your beauty box. This saves on shipping costs and means more treats!

Under all the beautiful and protective, recyclable shredded paper was my sheet mask, so I was glad it made it into my box successfully. Then came the seed paper product lists. I was too excited to read through them so kept digging for the products. I came across all the beauty products first which included a facial bar, a skin scrub, a balm and a gel eyeliner.

Then I thought… wait, where are my lifestyle products?! What I hadn’t realised was that I hadn’t dug far enough into my box… My lifestyle treats included some sweets, a compact mirror and my favourite item… a tote bag with the infamous words…

Don’t worry. You’re just as sane as I am.

Luna Lovegood (Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling)

For readers of my blog, I went to the Warner Bros Studio Tours the week before this box landed on my doorstep so it felt like fate for this tote bag to be bestowed upon me! Especially when it was a quote from my fellow Ravenclaw, Luna Lovegood.

So the breakdown of this box:

The total worth of the box is £102.75, so for £39.95 it’s an absolute bargain. Everything is full size which is great, especially for the things that I like!

As much as samples are great for trying things, it’s a pain if I love it and I run out. Also, if there’s something I’m not a fan of, I can give it to someone else who may benefit more out of it and I won’t feel silly giving them a small sample size.

I have yet to use everything in my box, but the House of Wonderland Alice in Wonderland compact mirror is now a staple in my handbag, alongside the Luna Lovegood tote bag.

I have yet to be disappointed by The Cruelty Free Beauty Box so I recommend giving them a try. Don’t forget that the lifestyle box isn’t the only box available. There are smaller and cheaper boxes available with different items which you can find here.

Self Care Sundays: Issue 2

Welcome to another issue of Self Care Sundays. I took a beat after a long week of work and treated myself to a relaxing bath and face mask.

Here are the products that I used this week:

Before moving onto the products, thrown into the picture above is my Spectrum Kind Cup which is cute and small; perfect for a cup of tea. It’s made of polypropylene which is also widely recyclable so when it’s worn down, it can be recycled!

Also, the best chocolate around, Nomo Chocolate. Available in Tesco stores, my favourite is fruit and nut but they have other flavours available too. Vegans out there who haven’t tried this chocolate yet really need to! You’d never know any different, it’s so good!

With those bits over, let’s move onto the skincare products…

Lush Face Mask: Cupcake

So, I’ve actually had this Cupcake face mask from Lush sat in my fridge for months. I hadn’t used it until last week but it still smelt amazing.

The mask was interesting. The smell was lovely, but I found the texture strange. It was easy enough to apply and wash off, but I didn’t feel like my skin was any better for it.

I don’t think this is something I’d recommend. Lush do have plenty more face masks so I’m sure I’ll be trying one of those in the future, but Cupcake won’t be one I’ll be buying again.

Lush Bath Bomb: Snow Fairy

As always, a bath bomb is necessary during one of my self-care sundays. I love a colourful bubble bath and the lovely smells.

This week was the Snow Fairy bath bomb which I believe is a Christmas special, and likely to have been hanging around in my secret stash for a while.

Snow Fairy has a gorgeous sweet smell to it, and I love a bright pink bubble bath. There isn’t much else going for it except for the gorgeous smell but that’s more than enough for me!

Maria Nila Head & Hair Heal Masque

Finally, I’m going to tell you about my favourite product this week which I’ll definitely be using regularly going forward.

In the first picture on this post is the Maria Nila Head and Hair Heal Masque. I actually received a full sized tub of this in a vegan Glossybox I ordered months and months ago. I’ve written about Maria Nila products before, you can find the post here.

This hair mask is absolutely incredible. It smelt truly amazing and was easy to put on. The texture was thick and creamy, and ran through my hair beautifully. I left it on for the recommended 10 minutes.

After I finished my bath and dried my hair, I was left with a gorgeous, frizz-free mane! My hair smelt incredible for days afterwards and it was left feeling the softest it’s ever been.

I highly recommend this product. It was nourishing and really did leave my hair and scalp feeling refreshed.

Self Care Sundays: Issue 1

It is important to take a beat for ourselves on a regular basis. Whether it be enjoying a hobby or trip somewhere you enjoy. With our busy lives, it’s nice to take time for ourselves.

As much as I wish I could, I don’t take every Sunday for myself. But when I do, I like to pamper myself a little.

This usually includes doing my nails, or taking a long bubble bath with my secret stash of Lush bubble bars and bath bombs. I like to throw in a hair mask and a face mask when I can to.

Every now and then, I’ll be throwing one of these posts to let you know some of the products I’ve been using and what I can and absolutely cannot recommend you guys go out and use!

Superdrug Face Mask

Superdrug has a great range of face masks for 99p. The first time I bought these masks, I actually bought them for a hen party goody bag. They’re all very well labelled as to whether they’re vegan or not. They also write on the front what skin type they’re best for.

This week, I used a black seaweed peel off mask. I’m not usually a fan of a peel off mask as I feel like they’re more effort than they’re worth, but for 99p, it was worth a shot.

An image of the mask. I’ll save you from the inappropriate selfie!

The mask was easy to apply and I used it all over my face. I used the entire pack which I don’t actually recommend. You can probably use half of one and achieve the same effect. Because I used the whole pack, it took a while for the mask to dry but once it did, it was easy to peel off.

My skin felt lovely afterwards. The oil had been stripped of my face and I felt super clean.

Lush Bath Bomb

For good measure, I threw in a bath bomb from my secret stash of Lush bath bombs! In fact, it’s so secret that I forgot about it and I’m pretty sure they don’t sell it anymore!

The bath bomb is called Shoot For The Stars and left a lovely blue colour in the bath. The stars were creamy and moisturising and it smelt lovely. It’s a shame that it’s not available anymore because I definitely recommend this bath bomb.

Keep an eye out for my future Self Care Sundays posts with various products that I’ll be using to pamper myself! If there’s anything you’d like me to try and write about then let me know in the comments.

Spectrum Collections: Cardiff Sample Sale [27/28th July]

This is an urgent blog post that must go up right now so that you guys don’t miss out on the biggest savings possible!

Spectrum Collections are having a sample sale this weekend in the Tramshed in Cardiff.

My friend, Emily, and I went this afternoon and we were in our element. We thought we’d pop by just to have a look at what was around but we weren’t expecting to buy much…

We walked into the Tramshed and were greeted by staff and told that all the products were behind the curtain pictured above. There was also a coffee bar on the right hand side in case you wanted to buy a coffee to browse with! (FYI, there was both cow milk and oat milk for the omnis and vegans out there).

We carried on through to the main part of the room and there were tables and tables lined with boxes of brushes and bags!

We made the tactical decision to look at everything first and make a list of the things that we wanted. I’m not going to lie, it was so difficult. With everything at such bargain prices, it was a challenge to filter!

There were so many options, ranging from small brush sets, 10 piece brush sets, make up bags/rolls, limited edition Disney X Spectrum collection items as well as individual brushes at £1 each! The most expensive set there was at £20 for the Disney roll bag set.

I wrote a post about Spectrum brushes that I bought a few months ago. I didn’t need any new brushes at all, but at the price they were, I really couldn’t say no. I bought some for my mum and sisters as well!

The sets were lovely and perfect to buy as gifts if you don’t even need them for yourself. And lets not forget, the products are all cruelty-free and vegan which is a massive bonus!

If you have some time, the sample sale continues tomorrow (Sunday, 28th July 2019) at the Tramshed in Cardiff from 11am – 5pm!

Spectrum Collection Brushes

I treated myself to a set of brand new Spectrum Collection brushes in May in their 50% bank holiday sale. Spectrum are well known for their bright, colourful, cruelty-free, vegan brushes. I couldn’t help myself when I saw that they were having a 50% off sale, so here I am, telling you about my glorious purchase.

At Christmas time, Tom bought me a set of brushes which were lovely so I knew they were high quality so I was happy to take the plunge. I bought a set to match my existing set, and only 1 brush overlapped!

I took the plunge and bought myself the White Marbleous 12 Piece Set. It has a wide range of face and eye brushes for application, buffing and contour.

  • A00 – Luxe Powder 
  • C07 – Luxe Tapered Sculptor 
  • A02 – Angled Foundation
  • C02 – Flat Top Contour
  • A05 – Precision Blush
  • B05 – Luxe Blender 
  • B06 – Tall Tapered Blender
  • A07 – Stubby Shader
  • A12 – Fluffy Pencil
  • A13 – Short Smudge
  • A14 – Brow Definer
  • A15 – Lip Definer

I believe the prefix A, B and C for the brushes stand for Application, Buffing and Contour. I’m sure they have a range of D brushes also which I can only guess is for Definition. Either way, I just use whichever brush is clean and does the job!

The brushes are made of synthetic materials and they’re super soft. Whenever I use them to apply, product is always applied evenly and smoothly. And plus, because the brushes are white, it does make them a lot easier to clean!

And on the topic of brush cleaning…

I also purchased their Mini Vegan Brush Soap. Incredibly easy to use. You simply wet the brush and wipe it over the soap. I then clean as always using one of the make up pads with the bumps I bought on eBay and my brushes smell lovely and are clean for re-use!

Spectrum brushes are quite expensive but they are worth every penny. The quality is fantastic and they look great on the dressing table. And more importantly, they are a vegan and cruelty-free brand!

The Gel Bottle Mani and Pedi

I love a good manicure. I cannot stand to have bare nails. I have normally done my own nails and before turning vegan, doing my own gel nails. I bought an LED lamp online and various gel nail polishes from my local Sally Beauty store. Sadly, the brands I’ve bought historically aren’t vegan, but I think it’s worse to waste them so I’m making them way through them before I replace them.

My mobile beautician, Rebecca, solves my problem by using The Gel Bottle. She’s been giving me my vegan mani fix every now and then when I fancy a treat! Here is the statement on The Gel Bottle website about their products being vegan.

So for the wedding I attended the other day, I treated myself to a mani and a pedi in colours to match my bridesmaid dress. I let my nails grow offensively long so that I could benefit from my manicure (and also the laziness got to me).

The colour range that The Gel Bottle provides is incredibly extensive. Rebecca has so many colours to choose from, there were plenty for me to pick from to match with my dress.

The colours I chose were to fit in with the dress and shoes, so I went with Diva and Coffee Diamond. I loved them both on the swatches, and I loved them even more on me.

Make sure you keep a look out for beauticians and salons that use The Gel Bottle. My nails last for weeks (the only thing that makes me change them is the growth!) so it’s definitely worth the investment into a good manicure.

Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Foundation by Fenty Beauty

For those of you that don’t know, Fenty Beauty is Rihanna’s own cosmetics range and they have recently dropped at Boots! Available online and in selected stores. Fortunately for me, Cardiff was one of them.

My sister had raved about the Fenty Beauty Flyliner, but I’m so loyal to the Kat Von D Beauty Tattoo Liner that I had never got around to trying it. Also, my mum didn’t rate it, and we all know mother knows best!

After a little light internet research on the best foundations for oily skin, the Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Foundation came out on top from most websites and reviews so I thought I’d take the plunge!

The box packaging

There are SO many different shades to choose from which I think is a good sign from a company. It means they’ve put a lot of effort in and acknowledge that people are different! There’s even a shade finder online which, based on my answers, was entirely accurate.

I personally wouldn’t buy foundation without trying it on. I’ve been bitten before and I’ve learnt from my mistakes. (That’s a subtle note to all the companies that don’t have stands in the usual department stores around the UK!).

My shade was 230 (FOR LIGHT TO MEDIUM SKIN WITH NEUTRAL UNDERTONESas described on their website), which is the shade that came out on the shade finder on the website, but I also spent 5 minutes in Boots applying it to my face to make sure! I also tried 235 which was more of a golden colour, too warm for me.

I applied the foundation on top of my Revolution Mattify primer, which I wrote about last month at this link. I used my Kat Von D #10 Lock-It Edge Foundation brush to apply it by applying the product straight onto my face and rubbing it in with the brush. I finished it off with the Kat Von D Lock-It Setting Mist as always.

Fenty Beauty are cruelty free, but are not completely vegan. They have some vegan products which they list on their website, which includes their Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Foundation.

Honestly, I was so impressed with this foundation. After a full days wear, I wasn’t completely shine free but I wasn’t anywhere as shiny as I’d usually be, and coverage was still full and not cakey! I highly recommend it. I’ve used other brands in the past such as Estee Lauder’s Double Wear and Kat Von D’s Lock It Foundation and this is by far the best I’ve ever used. The shade match is perfect and it doesn’t even feel like I’m wearing foundation at all.