It's probably a really daft thing to say, but much as I love a lot of things about winter, the cold and darkness really seems to have dragged on this year, and I'd had enough by the end of January! Spring is finally on the way, and I'm excited for all the new-ness that brings, so what better time to look back at the products I've been loving over the past season eh?
What with this being winter favourites it's probably hardly surprising that I'm kicking off with a hand cream which is an absolute essential for me. This isn't just any hand cream though, it's an intensive hand balm for very dry skin and it's been an absolute saviour throughout the cold months when my hands can get super dry and chapped. It has an amazing soft scent and immediately comforting feel on the skin. I've been pretty tempted to slap this on the dry patches on my face too, but probably best that I check out the face cream L'Occitane offers instead!
I've been so obsessed with these for months now. I only like the ultra satin lips, as the ultra matte lips are too drying on me - like suck the life out of my lips and leave them in the desert drying - but luckily I only bought one of those before I realised. I think I have around ten of the ultra satin lips, all in varying shades of nude and brown, and I've loved every one that I've tried. The formula is really long lasting, and my lips only start to feel dry or uncomfortable towards the end of the day. The formula goes on really nicely and smoothly, but it dries down fast so I do find you need to get your application done quickly and in one coat. I'd quite happily buy tonnes more of these if there wasn't the whole customs charges issue - maybe someone will bring Colourpop to the UK eventually, because I'd really like to start experimenting with their eyeshadows next.
I rate Sunday Riley's Luna very highly, and I think that gave me the confidence I needed to try UFO. When it comes to skincare above the £50 mark, I don't like to take too many risks for obvious reasons and will really look into a product in a lot of detail before I commit. UFO is good for oily and acne prone skins, and whilst I have a lot of dry patches to worry about, I also still have an oily-tzone and quite congested skin. After a few days of using UFO my skin looked a lot clearer, although I will say that the effects didn't seem to increase over time as I was hoping. The improvements I first saw are consistent, but I don't seem to be getting to a next level of clarity with my skin if you see what I mean? The other good thing about this oil is the fact that it's reduced the level of oiliness and greasiness in my skin - how ironic is that eh? I only use it on my t-zone and tops of my cheeks and vary carefully avoid dry areas, and that works for me. I'm wondering about trying the Martian Toner alongside this to see if the effects are increased when they work together, but that's fairly pricey too, so it needs some careful consideration!
On the theme of whinging about my combination skin woes, this is a moisturiser which has been able to handle my challenging complexion. There are a lot of moisturisers which are either too heavy or not hydrating enough for my skin, and I usually stick to the Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cream as that's one that works for me. I'm always nervous about trying a new moisturiser, but this one from Bioderma sounded like it could work, and it really did. It's exactly what I need - hydrating but light at the same time, and it's a definite option for me now. Sadly I've already finished up this tube and I'm back onto the Kiehl's for now, but when that runs out I think I might opt to replace it with the Bioderma Hydrabio, not least of all because it works out at better value for money ml for ml!
This CC cream has worked so well with the Bioderma product I just mentioned. It's hydrating but not at all oily, and it gives a much better coverage than I was expecting, having likened this to a tinted moisturiser. It's so much more than that, and gives me a lovely even base either to wear alone if I'm having a laid back Sunday makeup situation, or it works really well underneath foundation as a first step and in place of a primer. It's been really good for me in the in the cold, dry winter months too, as sometimes some of my foundations stop looking good on my skin around the drier patches, and wearing this underneath has really helped.
We need to file this one under 'products too pretty to use' and 'hoarded it for well over a year before I used it'! I really love the styling of these rose blushes by Milani. I remember first seeing them online a few years back and desperately wanting to get one. I even remember searching high and low for them on a trip to the states and coming back sad and empty handed. Once I finally got my hands on them on another trip I bought three shades and proceeded to just look at them for more than a year, not even allowing myself to swatch them in fear of messing with the beautiful rose petal design. Seriously I can be such a loser sometimes! I'm trying to get myself out of this ridiculous habit of hoarding makeup, and using one of these blushes has been a step towards recovery. It may not look so pretty now I've been using it for a while, but at least I can now tell you what a great, blendable blush it is, in a beautiful rosy taupe shade. Plus I still have one of the three I bought pristine and new, and you can now get them on beauty bay!
This post may as well have been called 'moans about dry skin' if I keep going on, so I'll save you the same explanation again - you know why I've been loving these from Antipodes this winter. Antipodes is a great, natural ingredients brand and I've really enjoyed everything I've tried from them in the past. Both the eye cream and the day cream feel instantly comforting on the skin, and they're a pleasure to use. The day cream is a bit rich for my oilier areas, but I've been able to enjoy using it at night instead for a boost of hydrating while I sleep.
I can't believe that I never used to be all that into face masks, and now I have a massive drawer full of mud masks, sheet masks and all sorts. I look forward to doing a face mask for a bit of relaxing and pampering me time, and of course the benefits to my skin. As my skin has been dry throughout winter, this one from The Body Shop has been one of my favourites as it's really hydrating and I feel like it brings my skin back to life after a day out in the cold.
I've been so into these shadows over winter. They have such a soft, blendable texture that makes them really quick and easy to apply, so you can see why I kept reaching for them. My favourite colours have been the paler matte shades and the bronze and cranberry shades from the shimmer stack. These really got me into trying that metallic red eye look that's been everywhere, which mush to my surprise suits me, and it's completely brought me out of my neutral shadow comfort zone!
From dry skin to dry hair, and some more extremes that I have the pleasure of dealing with - super dry ends with awfully oily roots. The actual bane of my life! As I have to avoid moisturising shampoos, I have to treat my ends to great conditioners and masks to stop them looking frazzled. I've been trying this Intense Nourishing mask from Tigi and I've really enjoyed it. Firstly it has a really unusual scent which I like - I thought that this would kind of smell like sweet porridge due to the honey and oatmeal, but it actually has a warm and spicy scent which is giving me throw back feels to Christmas! It's a thick and rich consistency which make it easy to slather on to the ends of my hair, and I've been leaving it on for up to twenty minutes while I relax in the bath. It leaves the ends of my hair feeling soft and looking a whole lot smoother.
Here's hoping spring is now around the corner and that I'll shut up moaning about dry skin!
What's been your favourite product this winter?