Winter Skincare Staples For Dry Skin | Beauty

Have really almost reached Christmas? I've been obsessed with the Christmas lights and mulled drinks as usual and have reminisced about last year's winter posts on my blog, my favorites were: 

Continuing on the dry skin path, here's a post on my winter skincare staples for the year - I've found quite a few new skincare gems this season to relieve my skin and keep me happy, but have also been loving a couple of oldies:

For the body:

Shanti Shower Indian Rose & Sweet Almond Oil Shower Oil, Rituals. I've never really imagined what a difference it would be to use a shower oil rather than a shower wash. It was a lovely surprise how much softer my skin was when exiting the shower (and they're perfect for shaving.) I still use a shower wash or cream a few times a week or when I've worked out because I like how it lathers up and makes me feel like I'm really cleaning myself, but generally I prefer shower oils as they don't strip my skin of moisture. I love the 'Indian Rose' candle by Rituals but I don't find that it smells anything like the shower oil, or vice versa. The candle is so lovely, with a very soft and comforting scent (not very rose-y) while the oil has a much bolder scent. I'll be repurchasing this in a different scent (the Sweet Oranges & Cedar Wood one is hella intriguing.)

Cocoa Butter Beautifying Oil, The Body Shop. This has been my winter of body oils. I've only used the Mango and Coconut scents from The Body Shop so far but decided to pick up Cocoa Butter this time around. I'm generally not drawn to chocolate, cocoa, or cacao scents in body products because I normally find them too sickly sweet but I've already used a third of this (and a little goes a long way), it's the warmest and most delicious scent - I can't get over it! Check out my favorite body oils here!

For the face:

Aloe Protective Restoring Mask, The Body Shop. Since getting the mask this autumn I've been using it non-stop. As it's suitable for sensitive skin it's very gentle and fragrance free, I find that the fragrance free-ness of the product smells a bit odd, but the mask itself is fantastic. I use this almost every night; since its consistency resembles that of a night cream I'll even use a sheer layer during the day when I want to restore my skin's dullness. I wasn't sure what the mask would really do as I normally look for masks that are either clearing or hydrating, but what this one does with my skin is turning it extremely soft and supple - it gives your skin that "bouncy" and renewed quality.

Vitamin E Sink-In Mosture Mask, The Body Shop. I've been using this sink-in mask religiously for over a year, it was formrely my night cream before I found the Aloe mask, but I do alternate every now and again and reach for this when my skin is in need of intense hydration. The mask has a gel-like consistency which I think is very refreshing when you're applying it, it's not heavy and sinks in effortlessly. If you haven't smelled The Body Shop's Vitamin E range, the scent is so lovely and soothing. I meant to include the Vitamin E Overnight Serum-in-Oil in this post as well but forgot to photograph it, though, it's great and a big recommendation if you're looking for a face oil.

Facial Spray, Evian. I came across this and thought that it looked cool and might be refreshing to bring to the pool when you're on vacation, but I ended up never using it for no reason at all. When I'm travelling I'm obsessed with my Clinique Moisture Surge Face Spray Thirsty Skin Relief on long-haul flights because it keeps my dry skin (gone drier by recycled air) oh so perfectly moisturized and refreshed, it's a holy grail product of mine. In other words, it's taken a while to give the Evian a fair chance and now I'm obsessed with it. Not only does it moisturize and refresh your skin like my Clinique spray, but it purifies, tones, and revives your makeup - how am I not to fall in love with it? It's the perfect travel product as well as if you work long days.

For the lips:

Eight Hour Cream Nourishing Lip Balm, Elizabeth Arden. I've heard a lot about the Eight Hour creams but never tried them so it was about time that I went out and got the hand cream or lip balm, I ended up going with the lip balm (as I've already found an incredible hand cream this winter, more below!) - in a squeeze tube as I thought it would be handier and more sanitary to have with you out and about. I'm super picky about lip balms and few do the trick for me in the wintertime, but I'm happy with this one. The balm merges beautifully with your lips (rather than sit on them), doing a great job of softening and protecting against harsh weather; it's lasting and effective as well as kiss-friendly (non-sticky.)

Rève De Miel, Nuxe. I have a hard time believing I'll find a lip balm as intense as this one; it's such a winner and an essential in any lip balm-lovers possession. I use this only at night as it's somewhat heavy on the lips, also because I've experienced that applying it more than twice a day will lessen the effect, so this is a balm I keep on my nightstand rather than in my handbag. My lips always feels nourished and replenished in the morning when I've applied this at bedtime, it just works its magic all through the night. For everyday use I'd go for the Eight Hour one, but if you want an intense balm for chapped lips, this is your guy.

For the hands:

Norwegian Formula Hand Cream, Neutrogena. Guys, if you suffer from extremely dry hands - look no further. I haven't tried anything as effective nor aiding on suffering hands in the wintertime as this, so I'm blown away and grateful that this exists. The product isn't actually a cream but comes out a concentrated, clear balm or salve which is the reason it has so much impact. It's quite rich and you will feel it on your hands but that's what I like about it, I can feel that it's protective my hands rather than just disappearing into my skin, and it's completely non-sticky and non-greasy. I just find that this soothes and relieves dry or chapped skin instantly and amazingly, I can't praise it enough, it's a must-have right now.

Cuticle Oil, Seacret. Along with very dry hands comes dry cuticles, who knew how great cuticle oils are? Admittedly, it feels like a bit of a chore to be applying cuticle oil when I'm already applying hand cream 700 times a day but it's a huge help and I've not had a single chapped cuticle since using this on a regular basis. This particular one that I've got was part of a nail care kit, not sure if you can get it separate but I've linked the kit!

3 Smoothing Body Oils For Dry Winter Skin | Beauty

I've recently become somewhat obsessed with body oils, they're pretty life-changing, at least to dry skin. I know a lot of people who think moisturizing daily is a chore and even more who don't even do it (or need to do it) so adding another step into that post-shower or evening routine is likely a big n-o for them. Since moisturizing my body is essential for my skin's survival I really don't mind adding body oils to my bathroom cabinet and it's been a strangely calming step in my post-shower routine. These are the ones I've been loving and reaching for:

Rituals Xiu Xi Calming Body & Massage Oil. This body oil has an incredibly calming scent of white lotus and yi yi ren (a chinese herb), lightly floral and clean. It's on the neutral side, a scent that makes me think of body washes, just clean and calming. It contains oils of sweet almond, grape seed, and sunflower seed, amongst others. Being a massage oil it doesn't absorb or spread out immediately, you kind of have to work it into your skin for a minute as it warms which is perfect for post-showers in the winters when it's chilly. It's definitely hard to use sparingly, I seem to be pumping the crap out of this when I'm using it. However, this is the one I turn to when I want my skin to be extra-extra-extra soft, because once it's there it's oh so lovely. And that scent goes nowhere, it'll linger all through the night on your skin which I haven't experienced with another body oil. If you're looking for a zen-like and spa-luxurious body oil, this is for you.

Dove DermaSpa Goodness Silky Body Oil. Boy, did this product take me by complete surprise, it's basically a daily luxury product in a bottle. The scent containing vanilla, coconut, and musk is fresh, somewhat warm, and darn delicious. I can't say I particularly recognize the vanilla nor coconut scent and it isn't really a vanilla-coconut concoction I've smelled before, but it is crazy yummy (I thought it reminded me of pears the first few times I used it!) This oil is easy-peasy to apply to your body and it sinks in just as easily. I was a tad hesitant about the seemingly golden shimmer in it but it's pretty much invisible on your skin (meaning you won't see any shimmer even when shining a flashlight on your arm. Yeah, I did this), it just has this quality of luminosity. I actually love that the oil is golden, it just makes me feel like I'm going to turn into a goddess. I, no doubt, experience that this makes my skin all silky and wonderful.

The Body Shop Coconut Beautifying Oil. I've basically finished this bottle but I had to include it before I go out and get another one. If you're looking for an oil that lasts a long time, look over here! I feel that this little guy has been with me forever, it refuses to run out. I'll start with the downside, the packaging has been a slight nightmare for me. Since the oil is a extremely liquid-y and lightweight consistency it easily spills everywhere with this type of lid (big warning if you plan on traveling with this, it's spilled on me even when I've taped it up.) Apart from that, the oil itself is great with a fresh coconut scent (not the typical sweet/coconut oil scent.) It's fresh but still warm, comforting, and rich - just as perfect for a tropical vacation as it is cozy for wintertime. This is a dry oil so it's not sticky or slick and will make your skin super smooth, the product is also meant for face and hair if you want to multi-use it.


Do you have a favorite moisturizing body oil?
Have you tried these?

8 Basic Wardrobe Staples For Autumn/Winter | Style

Autumn is most definitely my favorite season to dress myself as I'm finally able to bring out the oversized and the knits, and fold away the maxi skirts and flimsy tops. To me, autumn is all about staying cozy, comfy, and casual-chic before going all incognito in the winter, as I do (am I the only one that basically wants to look like a ninja in the wintertime?!)

I have a few key pieces that make up my autumn attire and once I've found them it's a long-term relationship, so most of these garments are oldies but I've tried finding similar items and have linked them if you're interested. Here are eight of my wardrobe staples for this season:

» The knitted sweater.

Is it just me or is it just the best thing to be able to pull out that perfect knit in the autumn? Well, 'perfect' may be too big of a word but I've found a close-perfect in this monochrome knit. It's so comfortable; cozy but still very breathable, and warm without being heavy. The design is also very flattering on. What I find so great about knitted sweaters is that they're versatile, with the right kind of knit you can get away with almost anything. I found a similar-looking one in various colors here!

» The right-sized bag.

I seem to either have little bags or humungous ones so it was time to try and find that right-sized bag for those A/W essentials (gloves, hat, mini umbrella, etc.) I spotted this in the store and went back to poke at it a couple of times before deciding to go for it. I like the simplicity, it's discreet but not totally plain-looking. The style of the opening is a neat detail but not very practical if you fuss with your bag a lot (like me - opening and closing and taking things out all the time) but the bag is a great size so that has to make up for it. You can find it here.

» The oversized sweater.

This is my favorite sweater ever. I got it on a whim about two years ago and it's been so well-loved since. It's huge on, basically a slouchy sweater dress. As it's made out of a thinner material it's ideal to layer; I like wearing this denim shirt underneath when it gets colder, the denim and collar peeking out is an interesting touch to an otherwise basic look. I'll wear this sweater on a casual day with black leggings or skinny jeans just as much as lounging at home with a pair of fuzzy slippers.

» The blouse + knitted cardigan combo.

As much as I want to live in a tent-like sweater forever and ever, sometimes that sweater needs to go in the laundry bin, and I can go ahead and wear something less "tent" and more "leaving the house," but still feel ridiculously comfy. This is my go-to outfit in the autumn; it's very basic but looks decently stylish - throwing on a pair of black skinny jeans and knee-high boots (seen below) and I'm fit for a day out. And just by putting on/taking off the cardigan you have a more "dressed up" or dressed down look.

» The fuzzy sweater.

It's not autumn or winter without a really soft, fuzzy sweater. Those that look a little bit like your bathroom rug and feel like feathers on your skin. You're cheating the cold when you own one of these as they make you feel so warm and content in frigid weather. They're great for wearing on their own in the autumn and then for layering in the winter. I've noticed that H&M always have a version of the fuzzy sweater every A/W if you're looking for one, I found one here.

» The perfect coat.

I'm definitely a coat gal - I love that they're timeless, durable, and you always look put together when wearing them. If you have small shoulders, like me, unstructured coats will be your best friend. I found this particular one not too long ago and fell fast - it's almost fleece-y in material (a dream if you can't stand scratchy coats) and is basically a blanket in disguise. You can find it here (unfortunately they ship to very few countries...)

snapshot from my Instagram

» The knee-high boots.

Forget the snuggly sweaters, boots are my autumn kryptonite. I'm normally drawn to biker boots but have always loved knee-high boots, they're so chic and keep your legs super warm(!) Though, I find it incredibly difficult finding a pair that fit my legs well. A good tip is looking for ones that have an elastic backside, they won't be as warm or look as good (in my opinion) but they'll fit much, much better. These ones (above) is one of my newest additions, unfortunately I couldn't find it online anymore to link to.


What are your autumn wardrobe staples?

Pink + Nude Lipstick Reviews | Beauty

I've not been much of a lipstick-wearer as I have annoyingly dry lips and time and again just give up on the whole deal, but I do love the look of nude lipsticks and have recently found that pinks suit me very well. After discovering the Rêve de Miel lip balm which is an absolute white-knight savior of dry and chapped lips, my lips haven't been as terrible and I ended up going hard for the lipsticks this summer and falling in love with the pinks and nudes. These are some of my recent additions and how I like them:

1. Clarins Petal Pink // 2. Clinique Beige Pop // 3. Seventeen Kiss Me Quick // 4. Rimmel 33 // 5. Too Faced Taffy // 6. Too Faced Naked Dolly

1. For ultimate lipstick-moisture the Clarins Joli Rouge Lipstick in "707 Petal Pink" has earned my trust. This is my my-lip-color-but-better lipstick, it has that graceful pink tinge which adds that extra something to your lips but isn't very obvious. I love swiping this on when I'm in a hurry and can't decide on a lip color and the moisture quality enhanced by mango oil will be amazing for fall. It's supple on the lips, has a nice and smooth sheen, and a scent I can't place but that reminds me of yummy licorice. Also, this is likely my favorite lipstick packaging, the weight and sturdiness to it makes it feel quite luxurious.

2. A competitor to the Clarins is my Clinique Pop Lip Color + Primer in "Beige Pop." I was looking for a flawless everyday nude lipstick with a sweet pink undertone. Nude lipsticks can come off slightly concealer-ish on my natural lip color if I pick a beige shade that's too solid, but what I love about this one is that it looks very beige in the stick but warms up to that perfect pinky nude when applied to my lips. I think the formula's awesome and will be collecting many more of these in the future. The lipstick has a modern-velvet finish, is decently moisturizing, sits comfortably on my lips, and is fragrance free.

3. A brand I've never thought about trying is Seventeen but I happened to swatch their lipsticks at Boots and was impressed by the beautiful color payoff. This one is Seventeen Stay Pout in "Kiss Me, Quick" which is that ideal pink shade - not too light, not too dark, just a perfect all-around medium pink. I find that it's the kind of color that would suit a night out just as much as the office. Unfortunately, the lipstick is on the dry side for me and comes of a little darker on my lips, though, I think it's a great option if you're looking for an affordable lipstick to stain your lips - it's fragrance free and stays on like a champ.

1. Clarins Petal Pink // 2. Clinique Beige Pop // 3. Seventeen Kiss Me Quick // 4. Rimmel 33 // 5. Too Faced Taffy // 6. Too Faced Naked Dolly

3. What lured me into the lipstick game this summer was this Rimmel Lasting Finish By Kate Moss Lipstick in "33" which is an attention-grabbing hot pink. It's an intense color that's easily subdued by the good ol' dabbing on. I've really liked turning to this lipstick when I'm wearing all monochrome and need a little something to make an outfit or neutral makeup more fun. I reapply this a lot so it's not as lasting as I would've wished, it also tends to cling to dry patches as well as go somewhat dry on my lips if I don't apply a moisturizing gloss over it. Yet, I've been reaching for this a lot. It has a matte finish and a bubblegum scent to it.

4. This Too Faced La Crème Color Drenched Lipstick in "Taffy" is described as a "pink marshmallow nude" though it actually turns more peachy on my lips which I really like, it makes an interesting nude shade that doesn't feel as "casual" as a pinky nude. The formula is super creamy and silky so I'm a little careful applying it as it can look smeared on - a single swipe is enough. It does an awesome job of conditioning your lips, however, while it isn't drying I do experience that the product seek out lines. Cool packaging, rich color, and the lipstick has a slight cookie scent (at least in my opinion,) definitely there but nothing overpowering.

5. Same goes for Too Faced La Crème Color Drenched Lipstick in "Naked Dolly" which is described as a "satin pink." I'll be giving this one away as it's way too beige on me. I reckon this would look super pretty on lighter-toned lips.

What's your favorite pink or nude lipstick?

Definitely share a recommendation if you know of moisturizing lipsticks!

A Mini 2015 Summer Recap | Travel

Summer may be gone but my memories of this summer's travels are still fresh and vibrant (and I may miss it a ton) so I felt that it might be nice to throw together a sweet, little Instagram post of some of my travel shots from Thailand and Taiwan. Personally, I love Instagram posts and recaps so definitely let me know if you do, too!

1. The majestic Wat Phra Kaew temple where you can find The Emerald Buddha, in Bangkok.
2. Unwinding + cooling down with an unsweetened iced tea at Starbucks.
3. One of my fave experiences in Taiwan, the Taipei 101 Tower. Still fascinated.
4. Sun Moon Lake, Taiwan (check out my Taiwan photo diary here, if you haven't!)
5. So pretty. Strolling from the hotel to the underground station, in Taipei.
6. Macarons + bed, sometimes I wonder if it gets better than this.
7. My typical island accessories consists of cute slip-ons + a white hat.
8. A sweet, little jungle trek en route to the beach.
9. The luxury of a private whirlpool on the terrace.

10. Concrete wall + endless nature beyond, makes me appreciate nature so much.
11. Having a raspberry macaron on the balcony just before a storm.
12. Sky + sea + sand, about all you need to revitalize your heart.
13. The perfect place to have a morning dip, so peaceful.
14. Peeking out the window at 5 AM in Bangkok and soaking up the moment.
15. One of my fave lipsticks of the summer (a lipstick post coming up!)
16. Quality café time. Here drinking a Melon + Vanilla tea.
17. Greens + blues at their best.
18. One last glimpse of the sunset before packing up my bags to go home.

More: travel

Do you have a fave shot?

(Find me on Instagram here!)

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