OZ Naturals Broad Spectrum Mineral Sunscreen review*

Hi lovelies! Quick post today to review the OZ Naturals Broad Spectrum Mineral Sunscreen, which I received for free in exchange of my honest opinion. This was my second time trying out a product from OZ Naturals and they didn’t disappoint me this time either!

This product claims to protect your skin from UVA/UVB rays, as well as moisturize your skin. It contains zinc oxide, aloe vera, vitamin E, green tea extract and almond oil, has SPF 30, and is safe for all skin types.

I’ve used it every day on my arms, chest, and any other area exposed to the sun (except for my face) and I can definitely say that it does what it’s supposed to! I went to Disney this weekend and even after two days in the park and being constantly in the sun, my skin didn’t burn at all.

The sunscreen is a relatively thick consistency, which absorbs into the skin quickly and doesn’t leave you feeling sticky or oily like some sunscreens do. As for the smell, if you’ve ever used an OZ Naturals moisturizing product, it has a very similar smell to that, which I prefer over the smell of regular sunscreen, which reminds me a bit too much of summer when I was younger, going to pools or the beach or even theme parks and everyone reeking of sunscreen.

Overall, it’s a good sunscreen/moisturizer and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who’s in the market for a new sunscreen! Granted, it’s fall in half the world right now so I don’t know how many of you are, but hey, you might still need it.

Have you ever tried any OZ Naturals products before?

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Face mask mini reviews*

Hi friends! For today’s post, I wanted to do a quick review and comparison of sorts for two masks I received in exchange of an honest review. I’ve tried them both twice to make sure that I could actually form a well-rounded opinion before making this post, and here I am now!

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The masks I’ll be talking about today are the WhiteDerm Resurface Enzyme Fading Mask and the Azteca Gold Healing Clay mask. I received both of these for free through the website Tomoson, in case anyone was wondering!

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First up, we’ll talk about the WhiteDerm mask. This mask claims to “remove blackheads and whiteheads naturally, unclog, minimize and reduce pores for a more even skin, and peel away pigmentation problems, like dark spots, melasma, freckles and blemishes.” I’ve used this mask three times now and I feel like it does live up to its claim pretty well!

The first thing that struck me was that it smells pretty good and I wasn’t expecting that at all. It’s not supposed to be a peel-off mask, but when I used it the first time, I was able to peel everything off quickly and with little residue, rather than having to wash it off. And considering that my biggest issue is blackheads and oily skin, I think this mask worked very well with my skin and I noticed it feeling refreshed and soft after using it!

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And now for our second contender, the Azteca Gold Healing Clay mask. I had high hopes for this mask as I’ve tried a few different clay masks before and liked them, but unfortunately, this was a big disappointment. The mask itself isn’t bad — you mix the powder with some water, let it sit for 10 minutes, then apply all over. It dries and leaves your face feeling tight and starts to crumble, which can be kind of messy if you’re not careful, but honestly, I don’t even care about that.

My issue was that as soon as I removed the mask, my face got noticeably and uncomfortably hot! I ended up going to bed with an ice pack to cool my face down and was honestly expecting to have my face break out in hives or something in the morning, but thankfully, my skin was alright. So I figured I’d give it another shot and I tried it again earlier this week, and the same thing happened again — even worse, I woke up the next morning which a terrible headache that I think was set off by using the mask and my face getting hot.

So needless to say, this mask did not agree with my skin! I don’t know what it was about it and I’m going to see if any of my friends wanna try it and if it goes any better for them.

That’s all I got for you today! Thanks for reading!

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ME! Bath Advanced Body Care product review*

Hello my loves! Today I’m coming atcha with another product review. A few weeks ago, the lovely folks over at ME! Bath offered to send me some products for review and let me take my pick from their website. I love taking baths, I love skincare products and I love feeling pampered, so how could I say no? I asked them to try out products from their Advanced Body Care line in Madagascar vanilla and lavender. The products got here in no time, and after using them for a week, I have a review for you all!!

The Madagascar vanilla and lavender products are supposed to reduce wrinkles and age spots, as well as fight acne and eczema, according to their site. It seemed great to try for my oily to combination skin and lavender is my all-time favorite scent in skincare products, so you can definitely say I was excited to get these!

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First up, we have the tri-functional sugar scrub. Their website says, “this tri-functional exfoliating sugar scrub is a revolutionary 3-in-1 formula that exfoliates, cleanses, & moisturizes. gentle enough to be used daily, this sugar-based scrub is infused with the finest organic jojoba oil, known for its remarkable ability to stimulate the production of your body’s own natural emollient.”

I took a bath the other night and used the sugar scrub all over my body, and let me tell you, I felt super luxurious doing it. The consistency is a little thicker than other sugar scrubs I’ve used, but definitely not in a bad way. Once I got used to that, it felt amazing to use it and my skin felt so nice, soft and moisturized after! Definitely felt really fancy and pampered!

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While taking my bath, I dropped two of the effervescent bath soaks in the water. Their website says, “this therapeutic bath soak, infused with rare 100% organic jojoba oil & epsom salt, will replenish lost moisture while absorbing key minerals & nutrients.alpha glucosyl hesperidin has been added to our classic creation to stimulate blood flow and promote a more youthful looking appearance.”

The best way to describe these would be like mini bath bombs. They didn’t have glitter in them or turn the water any colors like some of LUSH’s bath bombs do, but that doesn’t mean it didn’t feel just as nice on my skin once I got out! It made my bath smell like vanilla and lavender (duh) and combined with the body scrub, I smelled great that night.

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Lastly, we have the rejuvenating body lotion! I applied this after my bath and it was the perfect end to a night of pampering myself. Their website says, “created to complement your daily & nightly advanced skin care regimen, our world-renowned rejuvenating body lotion works by stimulating older skin cells to communicate like younger & healthier skin cells. infused with a patented oligopeptide & ceramide blend, our one-of-a-kind formulation smoothes wrinkles & repairs age-related skin damage. thicker than most body lotions & faster absorbing than a traditional body butter, this unique product, rich in shea butter & anti-oxidants, will leave your skin feeling smooth & looking young & vibrant without the need for continuous reapplication.”

This lotion is rich, definitely thick and extremely moisturizing. I’ve been using it every day to apply all over my arms and legs and there’s nothing better to start the day than to smell this delicious! It’s definitely as hydrating as it promises to be, and it’s become a permanent addition to my daily routine, when I tended to suck at actually applying lotion every day beforehand.

ME! Bath was extremely gracious, generous and lovely to send me their products for review, and I hope this helps you consider them next time you’re looking into new skincare products! They sent me another set of bath soaks in toasted coconut and lime, but since coconut is not my favorite smell, I passed it onto my mom and I will let everyone know what she says when she uses them!

Definitely check out their website and see all the different products they have. Thank you ME! Bath for sharing these goodies with me! Let me know what you thought in the comments!

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My skincare routine: morning and night

Hi friends! I apologize for this post being a day later than my planned schedule, I had quite the busy day yesterday and it totally slipped my mind! But I took today off to write everything and plan for the next week of posts and I’m catching up with everything I can handle today!

Ever since I got this blog, I’ve learned a lot about my skin type and my skincare routine has improved vastly in the last few months. I used to feel like I wasn’t thorough enough or taking enough care of my skin, but I’ve gotten better and am a lot more comfortable sharing my routine than I would’ve been back in May!

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MORNING

First, I start with the Aveeno brightening cleanser. I like using this one in the morning because it just makes me feel extra bright, but whether that’s actually the intended effect or just a sugar pill effect, who knows? Mostly I just want to use it up because I hate wasting products! Next, I use the Botanics Shine Away mattifying toner, which you might recall from a few posts ago! I bought it just before I went to Canada and it’s been an absolute godsend. I can’t go a day without it now!

I follow that up with the 100% Pure coffee bean eye cream, which I got in my last Birchbox and have been loving ever since! It makes my eyes seem brighter and helps keep those bags away (to a certain extent, of course). And last is my favorite new moisturizer from Sephora, the 8hr mattifying moisturizer sunscreen with SPF 20. I can’t use any moisturizer during the day without SPF in it because sun protection is important and my skin is quite fair, so I was really excited to find one that is oil-free and mattifying for my oily T-zone!

Along with all of these steps, I use the Botanics Shine Away invigorating face scrub twice a week on Tuesdays and Saturdays as a week to keep my skin extra clear and not oily.

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NIGHT

The first thing I do at night is cleanse my face with Clinique’s facial soap for oily skin, which I got not too long ago and have absolutely loved since then. My face definitely feels less oily since I started using this! Depending on how much makeup I have on, I’ll use a makeup wipe or my trusty micellar water to remove it before cleansing my face. I follow that up with the toner from Botanics I use in the mornings as well, because I feel like it gets rid of all the excess oil my nose likes to produce and makes my skin feel extra matte.

Once that’s done, I put on the eye gel from Body Merry, which was sent to me along with a few more products to review by the lovely folks at Body Merry (that post will be coming up soon). This gel is day to night but I only use it at night because I prefer the eye cream with caffeine during the day to make me seem more bright and awake, but it absolutely works for both! Once that’s done, I apply the Clinique Dramatically Different moisturizing gel in my T-zone and the Aveeno smart essentials nighttime moisture infusion on the rest of my face. I do this because the Clinique gel is perfect for the oiliest areas of my face, but since that’s mainly my T-zone, the rest of my face feels dry with just that and that’s where the Aveeno lotion steps in!

I hope you guys enjoyed my rambling on about skincare! Let me know if you have any questions or are interested in any specific products I use. Thanks for reading!

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Guest blogger week, day 7: Lucie’s LUSH Yoga bath bomb review

Hello Everyone!

Lucie here, from lucieleannexo – I’m super excited to be writing a guest post today for my lovely friend Valentina. When she approached me about her guest blogger week I was so delighted as she has such a lovely blog and the two of us have so much in common.

For any of you who aren’t familiar with my blog – I am a huge fan of LUSH, especially their range of bath bombs! I wanted to talk to you today about one of the Oxford Street bath bombs which I think are soon to be released in the USA (already in most stores throughout the UK) – it’s called Yoga Bomb!

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LUSH says ‘Find sanctuary in slow, infurling layers of deeply relaxing Olibanum and Ho wood’.

Yoga bomb really caught my attention whilst shopping at the Oxford Street store as it’s such a beautiful warm amber colour. Yoga bomb has a really pretty bronze shimmer to it. I also really love the name and it automatically makes me think of relaxing and unwinding.

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My favourite thing about this product is by far the scent! Yoga bomb has subtle citrus notes but it also has a spicy cinnamon scent which is just incredible. The warm cinnamon is such a comforting smell and I think this would be even nicer during Autumn/Winter when it’s all cold and frosty outside.

Yoga bomb isn’t the fizziest LUSH bath bomb I have tried, I did find it took quite a while to dissolve into the water. It left the water a gorgeous shimmery amber colour with fine pieces of copper/bronze glitter. The colour didn’t stain the bath which is always a big plus. But I must admit the glitter was a bit of a pain to clean up afterwards.

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I have tried quite a few of the Oxford Street bath bombs – including Cyanide Pill, Intergalactic & The Experimenter, Yoga Bomb has definitely been my favourite so far. I will definitely be repurchasing this one as I think it’s the perfect bath bomb for the colder months of the year and I am obsessed with the cinnamon scent.

I just want to say a big Thank you to Valentina for giving me the opportunity to guest post on her blog! It’s been really fun and I really enjoy working with other bloggers, it’s even better doing it with someone I get along with so well.

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Guest blogger week, day 4: Maddy’s tips for saving money and looking cute

Hey everyone! Valentina asked if I would like to be a guest blogger about a month ago and I’m really excited to have the finished product ready for everyone to read. My name is Maddy and I’m in school for journalism in Canada, however my biggest passion is fashion and makeup.

The school year is, sadly, fast approaching and as most of you reading this know, keeping up to date on fashion and makeup trends can be a fairly expensive thing to do. You’ll find yourself rationalizing skipping out on groceries in order to buy a new makeup pallette, or working a few extra shifts to get that jacket you saw and loved. As a student, it’s taken me a couple of years of experimenting, but I’ve finally figured out a few ways to save money and still look incredible.

  1. Rewards Cards

I can’t begin to stress enough about how much reward cards have saved me. Almost every store has rewards and sooner or later they are bound to add up points. This past week I went into Sephora and asked to redeem my points for the lowest level tier. Usually you’d think that the lowest level would have things you would never use and want to spend your saved points on; however, for only 100 points I was able to get a free sample of Benefit’s ‘They’re Real’ mascara. Not only does this allow me to try brands and products I was unsure of before, but this mascara “sample” is also big enough to last me until I can redeem more points for other free mascaras!11949643_10153636547068223_1421536623_n

  1. Email Subscription

Yes this may sound ridiculous (and slightly annoying) but hear me out. Create a separate email that isn’t connected to anything school or work related, then go in store or even online and sign up for your favourite store’s email programs. Many stores give you discounts upon signing up, like 10% off your next purchase, but the most important thing is that you’ll be in the know for whenever there are sales.

The emails sent out will not only notify you when there are store wide sales available for all customers, but many stores will also give you sales only available for subscribers. Just walk in store, show the cashier the email you received, and it’s instant money saved. It costs absolutely nothing to sign up, but it’ll save you a lot in the end.

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  1. Monthly gifts

Websites like Birchbox and ipsy send you gifts every month with a fairly inexpensive subscription. This allows you to try a lot of different high quality products for a minimal price. Both subscriptions are around $10 a month and while this doesn’t always guarantee a good haul, it will allow you to experiment with products you’d never thought you’d use. While I’ve never used this service, I’ve heard great reviews from friends and family who don’t have the time or money to go looking through stores for products.

  1. No-name brand matches (dupes)

This tip is more specified to makeup, however the idea behind it can be applied to all brands of trends. Many people, especially students, truly don’t care what brands you’ve bought. There, I’ve said it. Brands. Don’t. Matter.

That being said, many expensive brands usually have higher quality products. Therefore the only solution is to look for brands that are very similar in style and quality. For example, at MAC there are many lipsticks I love and adore but can’t spend the money on. Instead, I’ll grab the name of the lipstick and search up what its matches, or dupes, are on Google.

It’s that simple. You aren’t the first and you certainly won’t be the last person trying to look fashionable on a budget. There are entire makeup blogs dedicated to helping you find your matches with almost every makeup brand, you just have to know where to search.

Here are some links to get you started:

While these tips and tricks seem obvious, many people, including myself, don’t use them often enough. I started paying more attention to saving my money this year because of my ridiculous University tuition and I’ve still managed to stay on top of the latest trends. So, as the summer comes to a close, I wish everyone good luck in the new school year; may your fashion sense flourish and your grades stay high!

Thanks again to Valentina for being her usual lovely self, I hope I’ll be able to guest write again!

Guest blogger week, day 3: Ana’s blogs to bookmark

Hello there! I’m Ana from the blog Ravishing Roses. Today I’m going to talk you through my 3 current favourite blogs. I thought I would mix it up a little (because I’m wild like that) and pick blogs from different categories so there’s something for everyone. 

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THE LIFESTYLE ONE: DorkFace. If I’m ever feeling a little low Jemma’s blog is the first place I turn to. Jemma talks about a little bit of everything. There’s beauty, DIY and even a bit of art. Just to plug Jemma a little more, she is also an incredible artist. So if you’re on the look out for a blog header, look no further. 

THE BEAUTY ONE: Bloomin Rouge. Whenever I read Holly’s blog I get serious blog envy. It’s a minimalists dream, with gorgeous photos on white backgrounds- swoon. Holly really knows her stuff about beauty, everything I have tried by her has been great. She also does fabulous blog photography posts, so if you want to brush up your photography, Bloomin Rouge is the place to go. 

THE FASHION ONE: Lois Lillian.

Lois actually has a YouTube channel, which I have adored for a long time. Therefore when she re-designed her blog recently, I was very excited. She is a student, so all her outfits are reasonably priced, but still fabulous. If you’re into colour, this one perhaps isn’t for you. However, if you like simple but effective outfits, head on over. 

I hope that you enjoyed this little guest post by me! I’m over here if you want to check out my blog. Unfortunately I am not so in love with my blog that I included it in this post. However, you know if you want to bookmark my blog, that’s 100% okay too. 

Who are your favourite blogs at the moment?

Love 

Ana 

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