Sunday, 24 September 2017

Back to University

Last week, the semester at my university started again and it' going to be a busy one. If everything goes as planned, it's my last semester there. Hooray! Not that I don't like going to uni but I don't mind finishing my degree either. I've started to write my master's thesis now and this will take me a little  longer than till the end of the semester (that's the understatement of the month) but I'll get there eventually. However, writing my master's thesis, studying, working and blogging at the same time might be too much sometimes and I have to set priorities. As much as I love blogging, this is the first thing I have to put aside if I'm running short in time. So this is a little announcement in advance: if I don't post regularly, it's not because there's nothing to write about but because I have too much on my plate. To be honest, I've had too much to do for quite a while and whenever I felt like I was under too much pressure, I just didn't write any blogposts.

This blog is something I'm really passionate about and I try to make every post something worth reading. The only way I'm able to fill this blog with interesting, nicely looking content is when I feel like producing said content and when I have the time to do so. I love to invest time to do research about a product, about its history and the reason it's been created but it takes time to do this right. I was looking through the content of the last year and I feel like it isn't as creative and personal as it used to be. Luckily not all the time, it's mostly during the semester. That's why I don't write anymore when I'm not in the right mood or feel pressured to write something.

A random picture of my relaxing summer vacation in Spain after handing in all the examination papers last semester.
I'm looking forward to the day I hand in my master's thesis because that's when I will have more time to invest into this blog and when I have the opportunity to create more creative content for me and for you. Until then, I stick with writing whenever I can spare the time. 

Thank you for still visiting my blog and for your support! 

Have a great week and until next time
xx Cheryl

Monday, 11 September 2017

My Summer Beauty Favourites - Skincare, Makeup and Fragrance

I don't know where summer went but it went quickly. Over the last couple of days I've planned some hiking trips but I couldn't go on any of them because it was raining pretty much every day. So I think it's time for some summer vibes on the blog. I've tried and tested lots of products over the summer months and I'd like to give you a quick overview of the products I enjoyed most.

The Body Shop Skin Defence Multi-Protection Essence SPF 50
Sun protection is important all year round but it's especially important in summer when I'm outside as much as I can. This sun screen for face is the lightest I've ever had and it still has an SPF 50. I hardly notice it on my skin and it's not greasy at all which makes it perfect to wear under my foundation. I started using this around June, kept using it during the whole summer and I will definitely repurchase it.

M.A.C. Huggable Lipcolour in Out for Passion
This is my perfect effortless summer lipstick. It's sheer but not to sheer, has a beautiful coral tint and a balmy texture. I don't know what it is with the coral shades but they instantly get me in a summer mood. The shade is really flattering when my skin is slightly tanned. I purchased this in April and loved to wear it on sunny and fun days. This is the lipstick I'm always looking for because I just throw it into a handbag and forget where I put it. Does this happen to you as well? 

Caudalie Eau de Beauté*
Have you seen my blogpost about the Eau de Beauté? If so, you know I absolutely adore this product. It's a fine mist to refresh and fix makeup and to destress. I use it whenever I need a little pick me up or just to make my makeup look more radiant again. The scent manages to relax me every time I use it and I definitely use this during winter as well but I enjoyed it during summer especially because of its refreshing effect on my skin. 

Louis Widmer L'Eau de Peau Eau Fraîche*
This is my perfect summer scent. When I first got it and wrote this review I thought I'd use it on casual, sporty days but it soon turned out to be my go to summer scent. It has a fresh, lemony scent (even though it's peach and green tea) which makes me feel awake and energized. I like that this is a very light scent, it doesn't linger on for more than eight hours but it's just right for the office and I can wear something heavier in the evening if I like. 

Avène Tolérance Extrême Mask*

For some reason, it took me quite a while till I tried this face mask. It has a sterile tube packaging to keep it extra hygienic which I think is a big plus. When I've been out in the sun a lot or swimming, my skin can get dry so I like to treat it with a hydrating face mask at least once a week. That's where this mask came in handy. It's actually quite basic. It hydrates and soothes my skin and that's it. But most of the time, my skin doesn't need more and this mask manages to get that moisture back into my skin in no more than five minutes.

Smashbox Liquid Halo HD Foundation SPF 15

Welcome back, beloved Liquid Halo HD Foundation! If you've read my blog for over a year you might remember that this was my favourite summer foundation the previous year and this didn't change. It's such a lightweight formula with a natural, dewy finish and it stays on quite well. It's easy to blend and matches my skin tone perfectly, that's why I used it pretty much every day during summer. Now it's empty, which is really sad but it's on my shopping list for next year.

Of course I used many other products that I enjoyed as well but the six I mentioned above are the ones I thought were perfect for summer and that I'd like to use again next summer. I hope you liked this little impression of my favourite summer products. What were the products you enjoyed most? Please share them in the comments below, I'd love to read about your top picks. 

Have a lovely day!
xx Cheryl

*Press samples, opinions are honest and my own. 

Sunday, 27 August 2017

Estée Lauder Cushion Stick Foundation, Bronzer and Highlighter

I received Estée Lauder's Double Wear Nude Cushion Stick foundation about a year ago and I love the formula of the product so I was very excited when I found the Double Wear Highlighting Cushion Stick and the Radiant Bronze Cushion Stick in my postbox*.

Firstly, the packaging looks glorious! It's sleek and luxurious yet you can still see the product inside. So I don't need to tell you this but I do it anyway: the products are liquid. I'm a fan of liquid highlighter and bronzer because I find it easier to work them into my foundation to get a natural look. 

There's one little problem with the products I got: the bronzer I received is in the colour Medium Deep Bronzer and as you might know, my skin is very pale. The foundation shade Desert Beige is the shade I use in the summer when my skin is as tanned as it gets and you may have noticed in the picture above that the shade is lighter and more yellow toned than the highlighter. Anyway, let's try to work with what we've got here.

The products are oil-free, creamy, they blend really well and they're quite sheer, except for the foundation. It's the one I use in the evening or on other occasions when I want my skin to look extra flawless because this foundation really does make any imperfections disappear, even my boyfriend comments on my flawless complexion when I use it! It's not really full coverage, I'd say it's medium coverage but easily buildable and it looks just like skin. That's why you can apply it quite generously and it will look natural and glowy anyway because it blends like a dream. And it even stays where it's supposed to. Love it! 

To apply you have to twist the base of the stick until the product appears like you can see in the picture below. Then you just buff and blend the product onto your skin in circular motions. 

The sponge tip is a great idea to reapply the products on the go but to be honest, I'm usually too lazy to refresh my makeup during the day if I don't have a special event in the evening. Good thing these products last all day! On a side note, my skin is dry so it might last better on my skin than it does on oily skin types. I'm babbling, what I wanted to tell you is that I don't use the sponge tip when I'm at home, I rather use my brushes because it is more difficult to apply the products evenly and precisely with the sponge tip than with a brush. Additionally, I like to use my foundation brush after applying the bronzer and the highlighter to blend everything together. That's especially important considering the highlighter and bronzer are too dark for my skin tone. Due to the sheer coverage I can make them work on my skin but it takes some effort. 

However dark the products are, I can still see their effect on my skin. If you take a look at the swatches in the picture above, you may see how beautifully they reflect the light. Both the highlighter and the bronzer contain teeny tiny sparkly bits to create a healthy and gorgeous glow on the skin. You can build the products to make them more noticeable but I'd recommend to purchase them if you like a natural, glowy, sun-kissed look. 

The sponge tip can be removed to give it a proper wash. I use a baby shampoo to clean brushes and sponges because they are usually very mild and it works just fine. 

I'm intrigued to get the right shades for me because I'm all in for the natural, glowy looking skin. Sadly, the Double Wear Cushion Sticks aren't exactly inexpensive: They're CHF 44 each. To be fair, the packaging is quite elaborate and the quality of the products is lovely. 

What do you think about the Cushion Sticks? Do you like the concept?

Have a great day!
 xx Cheryl 

*press samples, all opinions are honest an my own

Sunday, 20 August 2017

20 Years of Beauty with Caudalie's Eau de Beauté

My favourite princess product celebrates its twentieth birthday! Caudalie's Eau de Beauté or Beauty Elixir* has had a place in my heart for quite a while now and I couldn't stop smiling when I received the beautiful anniversary limited edition a couple of weeks ago. I mean, just look at it! It's absolutely gorgeous!

Eau de Beauté is inspired by a youth elixir which was created in the 15th century for the Hungarian queen who liked to seduce the king with her beautiful complexion. Something I'm sure the ambassador of Eau de Beauté, the stunning model and actress Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, would be capable of, too. The product is completely natural and it contains myrrh, benzoin and extracts of orange blossom, grape and rose as well as melissa and mint essence. 

Eau de Beauté has a calming effect on the skin and the herbal scent is very relaxing. I have one travel size in my beauty bag which I carry around all the time, one at home on my dressing table and one in the drawer behind my desk in the office. I might have to admit that I'm addicted. 

So there's a couple of things you can use Eau de Beauté for: As a facial toner, as a face mist to refreshen or calm the skin, set your make up and to reduce the appearance of pores, to spray onto your cushion for a good night's sleep, or use it on a plane to make sure your skin stays hydrated, as an anti-stress face mist, as a room spray or to dampen a sponge applicator. As there are so many options to include the product into your daily routine, I quickly introduce you to my three favourite ways to use it. 

I use it every morning before I apply my makeup, either to prep the skin to make sure it is calm and glowing by applying two spritzes onto my hands and then patting my face with them or I dampen my sponge applicator with it for the same effect. 

The second way I use it is when I'm having a busy day and I therefore am slightly stressed. The herbal scent works wonders to relax and it's just a little pick-me-up during the day. The same goes for plane journeys: I bring a travel sized Eau de Beauté with me because this keeps my skin hydrated, makes it look fresh and feel calm and gives it a healthy glow. That's why I take it with me on the plane so I can have a relaxing and refreshing experience on the go. 

I love this product because it is so simple to use and even though I could live without it because it's not something essential to take good care of my skin it just makes me feel good and look that extra bit more fresh faced. The perfect beauty ally for a busy girl like me. 

The 30ml bottle is available for around CHF 15.40, the bigger one for CHF 42.40. I know this isn't exactly cheap for this sort of princess product but sometimes it's ok to treat oneself and this is my luxurious little treat I like to spend money on. 

Have you tried Caudalie's Eau de Beauté? How do you like to use it?

Have a lovely day!

xx Cheryl

* This is a press sample. Opinions are honest and my own. 

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Introducing Cellagon Apricot Line - Apricot 24h Cream

Cellagon cosmetics is a German company which produces natural vegan beauty products. All their products are free from parabens, paraffins, silicones and PEGs and they don't test on animals. 

One of their product lines is the Apricot line, a collection of skincare based on apricot kernel oil. The products are made in Switzerland and smell like a basket full of ripe apricots. I had the chance to put one of them, the Apricot 24h Cream, to the test. 

Apricol kernel oil contains vitamin A and E as well as essential fatty acids and the Apricot 24h Cream contains other lovely ingredients such as grape seed oil, edelweiss extracts (that's such a swiss ingredient) musk rose seed oil and argan oil. The description of the product says that the effects on the skin are a healthy rosy complexion, reduced pores, more elasticity and activation of the skin's metabolism. 

What I find absolutely ingenious is the airless jar of the product. This is so much more hygienic that a normal pot because you don't get in contact with the cream except for the exact amount you're applying. You just have to push on the top of the jar using your thumbs to get the amount of cream you need for one application out of it. The airless jar can be refilled, Cellagon Cosmetics sells refill pots for the Apricot 24h Cream. 

So far, so good. But does the product have any miraculous effects on my skin? 

This face cream can be used twice a day. Due to its rich texture, I only used it overnight because I thought it would be too heavy to apply before doing my make up. 

This is not the first product I try which contains apricot oil as one of the main ingredients and thus, the effect of this cream on my skin wasn't much of a surprise. For some reason, apricot kernel oil doesn't seem to get absorbed into my skin very well. This means, that the product basically stays on my skin till I wash it of in the morning. So the only effect the product has on my skin is that I get blemishes over time because my skin can't breathe properly.

After a week of testing, I stopped using it because I could see my skin wouldn't benefit from this cream. That's why I can't give you a full review on the effects of the Apricot 24h cream. However, at the same time a colleague from work tested it and she's really happy with the product. 

The Apricot 24h Cream smells delicious and natural and has a well-thought-out packaging. It's not for my skin type but I know that some people really enjoy using it. The products can be ordered online, it's not cheap though: CHF 52 for a new airless jar and CHF 46 for a refill pot. Maybe you have to consider that the product is vegan, comes in an extra hygienic jar and is produced in Switzerland. If these factors are important to you, it might be worth spending the money. 

So what do I think about this product? Obviously, it's not the right product for me but I love the airless jar and I would really appreciate it, if other brands used jars like this one too. I know Avène has a similar packaging for some of their products, do you know any other brands? Please let me know in the comments below.

Have a great day!

XX Cheryl

Sunday, 9 July 2017

Jo Malone - My First Impression on their Colognes

Jo Malone is a brand I've always been intrigued by but have been put off by the price tags on their products at the same time. I never really got the chance to test a product properly, so just imagine how happy I was when I received some of their colognes in goodie bags recently*. 

Jo Malone products come with a whole experience around them. Their shops are always absolutely gorgeous, chic and cozy at the same time and make me want to try everything. The packaging of their products is just as pretty and opening it feels like unwrapping a gift to me. Can you tell I'm excited about this?

I'd like to introduce you to this lovely little set with two 30ml bottles of Jo Malone colognes for about CHF 140. This would make such a great gift if you'd like to treat someone. By the way, 70% of the box is made from recycled material and it looks luxurious, right?

I tested Wood Sage & Sea Salt Cologne and Mimosa & Cardamom Cologne. I've heard a lot about the first one, lots of UK bloggers raved about this scent. On me, it smells fresh first but the scent develops quickly into a warm and rich, even spicy kind of scent. As the name suggests, it does really smell like a combination of wood and sea but the wooden note is stronger than the fresh note which makes it more of an autumnal or winter scent. 

Mimosa & Cardamom on the other hand is a floral scent with a hint of something light and sweet. The cardamom is quite obvious. On its own, I think this scent is suitable for more mature women. But Jo Malone scents can be combined, you're even encouraged to do so, that's why I combined these two and the result is a spicy and warm scent which would be perfect for Christmas. I'm having so much fun testing these scents right now! I'd highly recommend to try combining some of the scents, I find it fascinating how they change. 

What I noticed about all Jo Malone Colognes so far is that their scents are very pure and clear. This makes it easy to decide whether you like a scent or not. I really enjoy many of the lighter scents and some of the warm scents - I'm happy with the two I presented above - but there are a lot of scents that just aren't for me, such as Lime Basil & Mandarin, which by the name I thought I'd love. It's a fresh scent, the kind I usually go for, but on me it smells slightly sour - not something I enjoy. Luckily, we don't have to love every single Cologne, there's enough to choose from. In fact, Jo Malone has about 27 Colognes, if I counted correctly. If you start combining them, there are even more! 

My overall impression of the brand is very positive. Everything about it feels luxurious, from the shopping experience to the actual product. The 30ml bottles are available for CHF 69 each which isn't cheap but not insanely expensive either. I'd love to try some of their skincare products. Have you tried any? Do you have any recommendations?

Have a great day!

xx Cheryl

*yes, you guessed it right. These are press samples. As always, the opinion in this blogpost is my own and absolutely honest. 

Sunday, 2 July 2017

I love my Planet - Yves Rocher Launched an Innovative Concentrated Shower Gel

Sometimes, a beauty product can do more than live up to the sole purpose of making someone feel more beautiful. It can serve another cause which may make you feel beautiful on the inside too. I'm talking about Yves Rocher's new Concentrated Shower Gel*, which may sound mundane but if you take a closer look, it's much more than just a gel in a bottle.

Typical for Yves Rocher, the ingredients of the shower gel are all natural. What's new is the concentration of the product formulation which is four times higher than in a usual shower gel. A hazelnut size amount of the product is enough to wash your entire body. This means that a 100ml bottle of this shower gel is enough to shower 40 times. Hence, the packaging needs less plastic than a big bottle does and the amount actually used is recycled plastic. Smaller bottles and less amount of used product additionally require fewer transports and therefore the pollution can be reduced. In short, the higher concentration of the shower gel makes the whole product and its production more sustainable.

But the sustainability goes further: "I love my planet" is part of the "100 million trees" campaign by Foundation Yves Rocher. This means that Yves Rocher plants a tree for every Concentrated Shower Gel they sell because the aim of the campaign is to plant 100 million trees till 2020. I don't know about you but I'm a sucker for actions like this one, it makes me want to buy the product and start to count the trees I indirectly planted. Reducing pollution and planting trees by buying a certain shower gel? I'm in! 

The product comes in a 100ml bottle with a special lid to make dosage extra easy. A tiny amount of the product is definitely enough, I used it for a week straight and I can see now that it will last for the 40 showers the product description promises. As soon as the gel is combined with water it transforms into a creamy foam which can easily be distributed and massaged over the whole body. It leaves my skin feeling soft and smelling amazing and this is all I ask for when I'm using a shower gel.

The scent of my Concentrated Shower Gel is a mixture of mango and coriander but it's available in two other scents as well: bourbon vanilla or olive and petitgrain. I'm rather picky with fruity scents because I don't like it when they smell artificial but this one smells fresh because of the coriander, sweet, natural and just delicious. I haven't tested the other two scents yet, I usually like olive scented products so I guess that is the one I'll buy next.

The product launched in June so you should be able to pick it up at your local Yves Rocher store or online. It costs CHF 13.50, not cheap for a shower gel, but it's basically two bottles of shower gel because 100ml of the concentrate are 400ml of a normal shower gel and you're kind of buying a tree as well, right? Considering this, I think the price is fair. I really hope that this easy concept will inspire other brands to create products in a sustainable way, this product shows that a little effort can already do a lot. 

What do you think about Yves Rochers "I love my planet" campaign?

Have a great day!

xx Cheryl

*press sample, all opinions are honest and my own