I love splashing the cash on new make up. My bank balance, on the other hand, does not. Make up and beauty products can be very expensive, but fear not! Recently I have been trying out a lot more affordable make up brands and I am really impressed. More often than not the quality has been just as good (and in some cases even better) as more expensive, high end brands and you won’t have to take out a second mortgage – everyone’s a winner.

Here are my top 5 that I have been experimenting with over the past few months and some of my favourite products they have in their collection.

Collection Cosmetics 

Collection Cosmetics were all the rage in the beauty Instagram world a while back with their Lasting Collection Concealer. If I am not mistaken, this did result it them upping the price, but you can still get your hands on this concealer for under £5, so still pretty good. I have been using this concealer for about a year now and love it. I wouldn’t say it can compete with my NARS concealer, however, it is still very good and the concealer I go to on a daily basis. It has excellent coverage and lasts for a long time without creasing loads.

Collection Cosmetics have loads of other great products and they are all very affordable. They have the prettiest blushers and bronzers for whatever finish you’re looking for and these are only £2.99, which is great if you’re on a budget. I have yet to try any of their lip products but I will definitely be making a purchase as they have a huge range of different products and colours that are right up my street.

MUA

No surprises here – I adore this brand. It is cruelty free, has an excellent range of products and colours and it is so affordable. You might remember in my May and June favourites this brand made an appearance for their incredible eye shadow palettes (25 shades for £8, my favourite is Burning Embersand their lipsticks (£1 each! I am still shook). 

I have been trying a load of their products recently, from highlighters to primers and I have to say, I am impressed. I also recently reviewed their Silent Disco palette, which was only £4 and is full of super fun and vibrant shades! How beautiful is this?

Soap and Glory 

A little more expensive than the others but certainly not overly expensive, Soap and Glory is a favourite of mine for both skin care, make up and bath products. I could go on and on about all the products I love from this brand (and I probably will do in a future blog post) but for now we will focus on make up. The Sexy Mother Pucker lip gloss in Candy Queen is one of my favourite glosses on the market. It comes in at £9 but it is huge so will last for ages, plus it is such a wearable and delicate colour! They also have loads of other shades so if you’re looking for a gloss I would seriously recommend these. Also, don’t worry about the tingle! I am a huge wimp when it comes to plumping lip glosses but this is totally fine. I would describe it as a ‘buzz’ rather than anything painful!

Another lip product I love from this brand is the Sexy Mother Pucker Gloss Stick that comes in at £3.50 on their website. Unlike the lip gloss, these don’t tingle at all. They resemble the Clinique Chubby Sticks but, in my opinion, have a lot more pigmented finish. I think all of these colours are super pretty (I got a lot in my Christmas Advent Calendar) and I have continued to repurchase since.

 

 

Saturated Colour 

I first tried this brand a few months back in my Pip Box and I love it. The products are 100% cruelty free and the LIPSStick Moisturising Lipstick I received in my box was also vegan. The LIPSSticks feel so soft on the lips but the colour is so vibrant and beautiful, plus it has excellent staying power. I would recommend Naked Pink for a really beautiful, spring time look. They also have a stunning red, nudes and purples. At only £7, these are super affordable!

They don’t have a huge range of other products. However, another lip product I loved was the Make Me Matte Lipstick Mattifier . This award winning product is totally vegan and transforms glossy or satin lips into a matte finish. It does not feeling drying at all also has great staying power. It’s £8, so pretty affordable, and great for those of you who love a matte lip.

Bourjois Paris

Another brand that has been mentioned a fair few times on my blog, Bourjois Paris is a fab and affordable brand for foundations and face make up. I adore their Healthy Mix Powder and use it every single day either on its own or as a setting powder. The powder is £9.99, which I thought was a little expensive at first, but it is so worth it and lasts for ages. Also £9.99, their Healthy Mix Anti-Fatigue Foundation is such a fab drug store foundation. It gives such a pretty, dewy coverage and lasts pretty well throughout the day. This foundation is definitely be go to on a day to day basis.

I also absolutely love their blush collection and, of course, their Delice De Poudre Bronzing Powder , which will set you back £7.99.

So there you have it, 5 of my favourite affordable make up brands at the moment. You do not have to break the bank when it comes to make up. Just as with high end make up, different formulas and brands work differently for different people and half the fun is experimenting and trying out new things. With these brands, experimenting is a lot less of a risky investment and can be less than your morning coffee. 

What are your favourite affordable make up brands? Let me know in the comments down below. 

Jamie x 

Happy Friday guys and gals! As you read this post I am likely to be last minute panic packing ready for my holiday next week. Myself and my lovely in laws (and Conor, of course) will very shortly be sunning ourselves up in a private villa in Crete. I thought I would share with you guys some of my holiday essentials in the hope that this post will prevent me from leaving anything sitting on my bedside table. So without further ado, here are the things that will definitely be making it into my summer holiday suitcase (fingers crossed…) 

Hand Luggage

So Crete is not too far away but that does not mean that my hand luggage does not have to be thought through. Apart from the obvious travel documents, there are some bits and bobs that I simply cannot be separated with (even if I am 7.5 miles up in the air). 

Carmex Pineapple and Mint (£2.79 from Superdrug)

I cannot possibly be without a lip balm and this is my new summer favourite! When it comes to lip balms nothing quite compares with Carmex – I have been using it for years. They have recently come out with a load of new flavours and I was gifted the pineapple and mint in my Cosmopolitan Self Made goodie bag. Since then I have gone through another 2 tubes of these and I love it. It’s the best flavour and super light and summery. It’s a little thinner in consistency to other Carmex products so it is perfect for warmer weather and it is super moisturising and SPF 15. This will definitely be in my hand luggage.

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Bourjois Healthy Mix Pressed Face Powder (£9.99 from Boots) 

This is not the first time this powder has been mentioned on my blog. You might remember it featured a few months back in my post on skin care and my go to products when it came to helping with breakouts and I still love this product! It is such a fresh, light powder that really helps even out my skin tone. Since getting it it has not left my bag and I often use it to touch up my make up throughout the day. It comes with a little mirror and an applicator so you literally just need the compact and you’re good to go.

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‘Everything I know about Love’ by Dolly Alderton (£6.49 from Amazon) 

There are so many books that I want to read this summer but this one has really caught my eye and I think will make for great plane entertainment, not to mention chilling by the side of the pool! Recommended by Cosmopolitan, ‘Everything I know about love’ is a memoir from Dolly Alderton who is a former dating columnist for The Sunday Times. Alderton covers her life of relationships – the good, the bad and the ugly. It looks like a fab read with a really inspiring message about self love and being confident in your own skin – always an important message.

(Stay tuned for next weeks post for a full list of my summer reading goals)

 

Fashion

Zara Straw Bag with Rounded Handles (£29.99 from Zara) 

Straw bags have been making an appearance on the high street for a few months now and what better time to get on the trend then when you’re heading off on holiday? I have done a bit of browsing and this Zara Straw Bag is my favourite! It’s not the most affordable on the market but it’s super cute and the perfect size to take you from the beach to the cocktail bars in the evening. I have also been using this at home as well so I will definitely get a lot of use out of it. If you’re looking for something a little bigger or something that you can close, which is a slight downfall of this bag, Zara have loads of different styles so have a browse!

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Mix and Match Tropical/Orange Bikini (from £16 from MissGuided)

I have had a lot of problems trying to find an appropriate bikini to wear on a holiday with the in laws. Love Island has been giving me some serious swimwear envy and MissGuided have provided the goods when it comes to Love Island inspired costumes. Unfortunately finding high-waisted bottoms that are not going to be flashing my arse off to everyone I come into contact with has been a serious challenge. These mix and match sets, however, come in loads of different styles and really cute patterns. I’ve picked up this tropical set and the juicy orange set, which is such a gorgeous colour and is super in style at the moment. They also have a lovely pastel blue, white, red and loads others! I would definitely recommend taking a look.

Fancy getting your hands on one of these Love Island style bikinis (or anything from MissGuided at all) then use this link and you can save yourself £5 if you click referred by a friend!

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Black Maxi Belted Beach Kimono (£20 from Pretty Little Thing)

After seeing Olivia Buckland’s Instagram post of this gorgeous rose gold, sequinned kimono I knew I wanted one. I searched and managed to find her kimono on MissGuided. Slight problem… it’s £200. Sadly I am not an Instagram/reality show sensation and so £200 for a kimono was a little steep. I did, however, find some cheaper alternatives and this one from Pretty Little Thing is about as close as you’re going to get to Olivia’s. It comes in at £30 so it’s a hell of a lot cheaper. I actually ended up picking myself up this one from Pretty Little Thing. Even though it’s not quite what I was looking for, it’s super simply and easy to wear. Plus, at £20 I don’t mind getting it messy on the beach!

Beauty

When I’m on holiday I try to wear as little make up as possible, but I still like to get dolled up for nights out and fancy meals.

Sleek MakeUP Face Form in Medium (£9.99 from FeelUnique)

This is my go to contour palette. It comes with a matte contour, which is the perfect shade and super easy to blend. There is also a slightly glittery bronzer that I absolutely love when I have a bit of a tan. It is super natural but easy to build and gives your face a gorgeous glow. I also sometimes use this colour as an eye shadow if I am going for a warm, natural make up look. The middle powder is a highlight, which surprise surprise I also love! It gives you the most beautiful sheen without being glittery and rather than sitting on top of the skin almost blends to become part of it, giving the most naturally gorgeous glow. I use this palette every single day when I am home and I would not be without it on holiday. It is super sleek and so takes up hardly any room in your case and can create a variety of different beautiful looks.

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Banana Boat Kids Ultra Mist Advance Protection, Factor 50 (£6.99 from Chemist Direct)

It wouldn’t be a holiday essentials post without a suncream and this one is my favourite. I am really pale and suffer terribly with heat rash but I also hate suncream. I always wear it, without a doubt, but I cannot stand the feel on my skin. This suncream on the other hand is the more refreshing mist, smells amazing and gives fantastic protection. It is super easy to apply and does not feel sticky or greasy at all (even on my face). It helps to control my heat rash and I have never been burnt using this. The only slight problem is that because it is a spray it does not last for ages so make sure you stock up on a few bottles because you will probably run out.

LUSH American Cream Conditioner (from £5.75 from LUSH)

My hair always needs extra care when I go away. The mixture of heat, sweat and sea water does nothing for keeping my hair smooth and soft and so I always make sure I have a deep conditioner packed. American Cream from LUSH is great! It smells like a delicious strawberry milkshake and has honey water within it, which it super nourishing. I usually use this every other day on holiday and it really helps keep my hair in good condition. If you are looking for a lightweight, less moisturising conditioner than maybe go for Happy Happy Joy Joy over this or if your hair is super damaged, LUSH do a fab hot oil treatment I would recommend giving a go. LUSH have loads of different conditioners so check out their blog on ‘How to choose the perfect hair conditioner’ for your hair type. They can be a little expensive but they’re so worth it!

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So there you have it, some of my holiday essentials that I will be packing and taking to Crete with me! Where are you guys heading off to this year and what bits and bobs will definitely be in your case? 

Jamie x 

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Hey guys! It’s that time of the month again. No, not *that* time of the month… time for my monthly favourites. I don’t mean to terrify you all but it is more than half way throughout 2018. Madness, I know. So far this year I have completed my degree, qualified as a personal trainer, done and secured some internships and finally started putting 2018 and not 2017 on forms. Success.

Anyway, as promised now that I have graduated I have got a lot more time on my hands (some might say too much time on my hands) and so you will now be seeing monthly favourites a lot more – I’ll even go as far as saying every month but don’t hold me to it! So, without waffling any longer, let’s get into some of my favourites of June… 

Fashion

Love them or hate them (although you should love them because they are so cool) the baker boy hat is back and I finally got my hands on one!

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Look how cute it is! Okay, so it might not be up your street but I am obsessed with this cord, vintage rose baker boy. I’m not usually a hat person but anything that allows me to channel my inner Kiera Knightly in Love Actually gets a huge yes from me. I got this one from Topshop and it was £15, which I think is a little pricey. I did, however, find a very similar one in Primark for £5 so if you like it then learn from my mistakes, head there first and save yourself some cash. I am not sure how it compares quality wise because I was too hurt that I had unnecessarily spent an extra £10 to make detailed comparisons but it definitely looked very VERY similar. Cry cry. 

Despite me not being the savviest of shoppers with this one I really do love the hat. It goes with everything and makes me feel like a 90’s chick – definitely a fashion favourite.

Make Up 

This month’s favourites are actually from the same brand as last month (well done MUA!) As mentioned in last months favourites, this is a cruelty free and super affordable brand exclusively from superdrug. I went shopping in Birmingham this month and headed to Selfridges with the intention of picking up the nice new nude lipstick from MAC. They didn’t have the colour I wanted (Jubilee) so I decided to pop into superdrug and see if the high street could serve me any better. I ended up looking at the MUA collection and was SHOOK by their £1 (!!) lipsticks. I was a little apprehensive and was not expecting much from lipsticks that cost £1 but I swatched some of the colours and loved them so I thought it was worth a shot. They did not disappoint! I picked up 3 different colours: Bare (a very light, creamy nude), Nectar (a vibrant coral) and Tulip (a pale barbie pink). They have a satin finish, which is my favourite for a lipstick and feel great on the lips.

All three of the colours have pretty decent staying powder comparable with the MAC lustre lipstick collection. My favourite is Nectar. It is this gorgeous, juicy orange/coral – perfect for summer and it lasts for a really long time on the lips. My only slight criticism would be that they don’t smell great. It is not a bad smell and it is definitely not strong but when you first put them on you there is a faint play dough sort of smell. For £1, however, you really cannot go wrong. I would seriously recommend picking some of these up. They have a pretty good colour selection and they are perfect for everyday wear. Plus, it doesn’t matter too much if you lose it on a night out so no more morning after fear – everyone is a winner.

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Skin Care 

No prizes for guessing but this month my skin care favourite is hands down LUSH Mask of Magnaminty. I cannot fault this face mask at all! It smells delicious (like minty ice cream), it’s self preserving (if you get the self preserving one of course), vegan and makes my skin look and feel incredible. It cost me £12.50 for a 315g tub and I can already tell I am going to get a lot of uses out of it! I’ve been using this mask twice a week. It recommends you leave it on for 15 minutes but I have been going a little longer (more like 25-30 minutes) and, in just a few uses, my skin is already looking so much fresher. It has been a miracle worker on my spot prone areas and generally my skin is looking a lot brighter and far more even.

I have tried a lot of face masks in my time and never really found one that stood out. I have tended to find them a little but gimmicky. This on the other hand is incredible and I cannot recommend it enough. Without a doubt the best face mask I have ever tried!

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Exercise 

Last month Meta-fit stole the show but this month I have fallen in love with another Les Mills class – Body pump. Body pump is an hour long and is based on 11 tracks (one of which being a banger from The Killers) . It’s all about strength and sculpting but, just as with any Les Mills class, it gets your heart rate up and seriously makes you sweat. The newest track (105) is a fab full body workout. It’s tough going (I’m looking at you lunge track) but it can be easily adapted to suit any ability. My aim with these classes was to maintain my current level of strength whilst improving my cardiovascular fitness and body composition. Since doing this class I have seen huge improvements in my muscle definition and have actually increased my strength despite doing heavy weights fewer times a week. I would really recommend giving this a go if you are looking for a serious challenge. It burns like crazy but it does do what it says on the tin and you really will feel pumped afterwards.

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Do not put this much weight on, my lord this person must be crazy. Image from lesmills.com. Go and check out the workouts, they’re really great.

Entertainment (TV Show) 

This was really, really hard this month. Despite having a lot of free time I haven’t really watched many new TV shows. Last month it was a toss up between FRIENDS and Stranger Things and because I started Stranger Things towards the end of the month I had to give it to FRIENDS. Anyway, I was pretty certain Stranger Things would take it in June but then Safe through a spanner in the works. Both and very good and both are very different. I have decided, however, to go with Safe. This is not because Stranger Things does not deserve a spot but I was very late to join the Stranger Things band wagon and so I am going to assume most of you have already seen it. Safe though is pretty new. It’s a Netflix original, 7 episodes and they’re each about 45-50 minutes (perfect for binge watching). It’s a bit of a murder mystery sort of thing but MY GOD it is good. Loads of twists and turns, face paced and everyone is a little bit dodgy, which only makes it more interesting. I am usually the best at predicting the ending but it kept me on my toes right until the end. It was fantastic and I would highly recommend it.

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Image from Digital Spy (although don’t read this until after you have finished – loads of spoilers)

So there you have it, some of my June favourites. What do you think? Getting over excited at the number of lipsticks you can get without blowing the bank? Got a different favourite face mask I need to try out? Let me know your thoughts and what you guys have been loving this month and stayed tuned to see if MUA can make it on the favourites for the 3rd month in a row. 

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Jamie x 

If you follow me on Instagram, you will know that recently I have been struggling with bad skin. I have never really struggled with spots, even as a teenager, and so this breakout of spots, pimples and black heads has been very unusual for me. I have not changed anything about my skin care or make up routine and I always make sure my pillows and towels are clean and fresh. I have, however, narrowed it down to two culprits – sweat and stress. I thought I would share with you guys to science behind sweat, stress and spots and some of the products I have been loving and have really helped me with my breakout. 

Before we begin, I thought I would share some pictures of my skin during the breakout and after two weeks of doing this research and making little changes to my skin care and lifestyle. Here we go…

2 weeks ago

Two weeks later

2 weeks on my skin isn’t quite back to normal but I think it is looking at lot better. I still have some spots but they are a lot less red and swollen. My skin does not feel half as sore as it did 2 weeks ago!

So let’s get down to business. Here is the science behind what I think may have been causing my spots.

Sweat 

One of the reasons I may not have suffered with spots during my teenage years if because I never ever broke into a sweat. The closest thing I exercise I got was walking to the fridge and surprisingly this rarely caused much of a sweat. Don’t get me wrong, I was a sweaty child. When I did do sports (reluctantly, of course) you would be forgiven for assuming I had just stepped out of the shower. I have always been quite sweaty (grim) so I just avoided all forms of physical activity at all cost. Unhealthy, overweight but my skin was a smooth as a baby’s bum.

Now, however, it is a very different story. I train a lot and I have yet to grow out of my excessive sweating when I do so. The sweat itself isn’t really the problem according to science. Sweating helps to regulates your body temperature and signals your body’s ability to hydrate. It is full of water hydrates, minerals and salt, which naturally exfoliate the skin whilst the urea and uric acid can help with dry skin and dermatitis.It also helps to flush out any impurities and does wonders for your skins pH level.

However, (DISCLAIMER: this is about the get gross, please do not judge me) it is when the sweat is left on the skin for a prolonged period of time the problems can start. Yes, I know I should jump straight in the show after my gym class but sometimes (okay most of the time) this doesn’t happen. I either run to my next class or do not have time to shower and then redo my makeup and hair before my important date with a coffee shop and revision. Basically, this means all the grime and make up and gross stuff is left just sitting on my skin. It then settles back into the skin causing spots, black heads and increasing the size of your pores.

Most concealers and foundations products are designed to be noncomedogenic (this is fancy talk for ‘they don’t clog pores’) but when the sweat combined with these products your face becomes air-tight, preventing your pores from breathing. On top of all that, you will probably (definitely) touch your face at some point during your workout, or even wipe your sweat with a towel, which can both introduce dirt and bacteria. According to science, we should be washing our face fully both before and after a workout. This means people are going to see me without make up on… doesn’t it? 

It is not that any of this was shocking or revolutionary information but I never leave the house without make up on. This is not because I particularly enjoy caking my face in foundations and concealer every single day but I simply do not have the confidence to do any other. It resulted in a vicious cycle of wanting to hide my skin, which caused more spots and then wanting to hide my skin even more. Anyway, I have been braving it. I have gone bare face to the gym (or just used a super light powder) and made sure I carry make up remover to clean my face with after the workout. It is a lot of messing around, I’ll be honest, and it does mean having to give myself a bit more time before heading off to get a coffee but if it is going to help my skin I guess it’s worth it…

Stress

It is probably going to come as no surprise that stress can cause spots. Stress presents itself differently for different people. I can’t say as I particularly felt stressed during at all during my exam period, however, that does not mean that it was not manifesting itself as spots. So how does stress lead to spots? Well, stress-related hormones for example cortisol leads your sebaceous glands to produce more oil. More oil results in your skin being more prone to acne and generally more sensitive to the outside world. On top of all the sebum (lovely image…) the sebaceous glands are also immune organs, which pretty much means they can lead to unwanted swelling and redness.

All in all, stress is not great for your skin. This was not quite as simple to deal with as ‘stop being gross and wash your face’. Unfortunately I could not pull out of my exams due to a couple of spots. I just made sure I was getting as much rest as possible during periods of high stress and stayed hydrated. Wasn’t going to secure me a first but I definitely think taking more care of myself on the inside helped with how I looked on the outside.

Products I have been loving 

During the last 2 weeks I have tried to keep any face products to a minimum and have kept make up off of my face as much as possible. However, I do have a few of product recommendations that have been my go-to’s over the last 2 weeks.

Garnier Micellar Water

This product has been an absolute god send! This one product both cleans, cleanses and moisturises my skin. I find that this product removes my make up better than anything else and I have also been using it after my work outs just to freshen up my skin and wipe off any sweat and grime. It’s super affordable, fragrance free and dermatologically tested so is great if you have sensitive skin. I genuinely believe I have this product to thank for the improvements I have seen in my skin over the last 2 weeks.

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FRÉ Skin Care 

If you have been following my blog for a while then this will come as no surprise to you. I absolutely love these products and everything the company stands for. I have been raving about them for weeks and weeks and they have really helped to clear up my sweat damaged skin! I know they are a little pricey but I really think they’re worth it and I don’t mind investing in good quality skincare if it does the job and these products certainly do! After trying (and loving) the products I was offered to join their ambassador programme (eek!). I am super happy to say that I am now able to offer you guys 15% off using the code JJ so go and take a look. I do earn a little bit of money if people use my code so I would really appreciate it!

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Bourjois Healthy Mix Pressed Face Powder

I promised myself that I wouldn’t wear any make up at all in the day but as it turns out… I am weak. I found that going bare left me feeling really rubbish about myself and I spent the whole day self conscious. I decided that as much as I didn’t want to be caking on my liquid foundation, I was going to need something to help with my confidence whilst still allowing my skin to breathe. I picked up the Bourjois Health Mix press powered in shade 01. The coverage is subtle and matte, whilst still giving your skin a radiance without being shiny. It helped smooth out the appearance of my skin and yet I didn’t feel as though I was clogging up my pores. This powder feels super light on the skin but has pretty good staying power. It’s still of vitamins and although I’m not exactly sure what they do it sounds pretty good, right? This product is £9.99 and comes with a mirror and little applicator (although I use a powder brush most of the time) so you can just chuck it in your bag. It also makes a great setting powder for if you are going for a liquid foundation base. I love this product and I will definitely not be going back to a liquid foundation as my daily go-to.

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LUSH Magnaminty Face Mask

I adore LUSH products so when this was recommended to me I had to try it. I was a little worried about it making my skin worse but I did a tester and had no reaction so went for it. I’ve only used it once and so I definitely want to continue trailing this product before giving a definitive opinion, however, so far I really do like it. It helped to clear my skin and brighten up my dull and tired complexion. As with all LUSH products, it smells delicious! It is infused with peppermint oil as well are marigold oil, chlorophyllin, primrose seeds, aduki beans, honey and other delicious and natural ingredients. You have two options to choose from. I went for the self preserving form (this basically means it keeps itself clean without synthetic preservatives) because I prefer a wetter texture rather than the kind of face masks that dry when applied. Apparently apart from the texture the results are the same so it just depends on your personal preference. It comes in at £12.50 for 315g, which is the medium sized tub and I would seriously recommend it if you are having troubles with your skin.

So there you have it, some of the lessons I have learnt and the products I have been using to help with my skin over the last few weeks. The fitness world often ignores the not so pretty side of training and, for me anyway, spots have definitely been a main one. I guess this is partly my fault but I just never really thought about it. I was complacent that I had made it through my teenage years without spots so I was going to be in the clear. Turns out I was anything but in the clear. 

I hope you have enjoyed this post and maybe even found it useful. I’ll be back the same time next week so stay tuned and in the mean time head over to my Instagram and give me a follow for daily updates. 

Jamie x 

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Sources: 

https://www.neutrogena-me.com/en/expert-centre/stress-and-your-skin/stress-spots

http://www.stack.com/a/effects-of-sweat-on-skin

https://intothegloss.com/2015/06/effects-of-sweat-on-face/

https://health.howstuffworks.com/skin-care/daily/tips/quick-tips-is-it-bad-to-sweat-with-makeup-on-.htm

https://graziadaily.co.uk/beauty-hair/skin/spots-acne-chin-forehead-back-neck-chest-face-mapping/

Hey guys! I thought today I would share with you guys some of my favourites of the month. I know, I know… it is not technically the end of May but just go with it, it’s exam season! I don’t do these often (mainly because I am a poor student whose monthly favourites usually consist of  baked beans and binge watching trash TV) but when I do they have been quite popular so who knows, now I have graduated you might be seeing a few more monthly favourites posts.

So, without further a due, these are some of my favourites of May…

Fashion

As always, Zara has been delivering the goods this month! I made some purchases at the start of the month that I have already become my go to fashion staples and I recently put in another order. Picking a single favourite Zara item is like being forced to pick a favourite child – I love them all equally but let’s just say if I could only send one off to University it would be this mini dress with gathered details. I was really torn as to whether or not I should get this dress. I thought it might be a little bold but recently I seem to have stopped worrying and just been wearing clothes that I love. I adore this dress. It is perfect for both in the office and going out for a nice meal and some cocktails. The colours are absolutely amazing and so summery. If this is a bit too bold for you but you like the style, they also have a plain black dress so go and take a look. For £17.99 you really can’t go wrong!

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Image from www.zara.com

Make Up 

I have been seriously working on a budget when it comes to make up this month and so I have hardly got any new products, however, I have been using a lot of MUA. This is an affordable make up brand that is exclusive to Superdrug. It is a cruelty free brand but is unfortunately not vegan, however, I got gifted with some of these products and so they were already part of my collection. I have been trying out a few of their products that I am pretty impressed by but I wanted to talk about one product in particular that I have been loving for months! The MUA eyeshadow palette in Burning Embers. The palette has 25 gorgeous shades and it’s only £8, which is super cheap. The colours are so pigmented and blend beautifully. You can create so many different looks with this palette and, although I have my favourites, there isn’t a colour in this set that I don’t use, which is really rare even in high end palettes. If you like you’re pinks, neutrals and oranges I would seriously recommend giving this a go.

MUA-Eyeshadow-Palette-Burning-Embers-030-715922Image from www.superdrug.com

Skin Care 

It will probably come as no surprise to most of you that my favourite skincare this month has been the 12FRÉ collection from FRÉ skincare. I have been raving about these products on all of my social media platforms and a month on I am still loving this brand. These are cruelty free and are a little on the expensive side but they are so good and I would always prefer to spend more on my skincare than my makeup – just to be sure I am using the best stuff for my skin. The whole collection comes in at $115, which I know is steep but I really do think it is worth the investment. If you want more information you can check out my full review here.

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Music 

So I’ll be honest, if you listen to any of my radio shows you will know that I am not particularly ‘down with the kids’ when it comes to music. However, this month I have really got into one song that has been on the A list at our student radio station and that is Ferrari by Bebe Rexha. Usually I am more of an 80’s sort of girl but I have really been enjoying this. If you haven’t heard it (or if you have and just really want to give it a listen) you can find it here.

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Image from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EgZpd5TrSUc 

Exercise 

What with exams and everything else going on this month, exercise has been an absolute god send. I’ll be honest, sometimes I have really had to drag myself out of the house to get it done but I always feel so much better afterwards. I am probably weight training about 3 times a week at the moment and really enjoying it but it has not made it onto the May favourites. This month fitness classes have been my saving grace and really motivated me to push myself and try new things. My absolute favourite is MetaFit. It’s 30 minutes of super high intensity workouts and we usually follow our sessions with a core workout. Each session is different and it is great to meet new people (something that can be really tough over exam season.) If you are looking for a fat burning challenge I would seriously recommend giving this a go.

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TV Show 

Last favourite for this month but I don’t feel like I can reflect on my May favourites without giving a quick shout out to Netflix for putting on all of the FRIENDS series. Yes, it’s old. Yes, it’s kind of been ripped to pieces lately. And yes, Ross is the worst! But I honestly love this programme. I have probably watched the whole thing about 5 times at least in my life time and I laugh every single time. 20 minutes an episode, nothing too serious (apart from the whole ‘we were on a break stuff’, which definitely does not justify your actions Ross!) – what better procrastination TV show?

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Image from www.independent.co.uk 

So there you have it, some of my May favourites. What do you think? Love a bit of Ferrari? Cannot get past the outdated views of Ross Geller to enjoy a single episode of FRIENDS ever again? Let me know. I also want to know what you guys have been loving this month. Who knows, they might even make an appearance in my June favourites. 

Jamie x 

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