Tried and Tested, and Added to My Makeup Capsule Wardrobe

This week I thought I would bring you a roundup of some new beauty products I have been using. Some are things that I was gifted at the conference I attended in Dallas, and some are items that have been recommended to me by beauty bloggers I met.

So let’s start at the bottom, as in before any makeup is applied, with skincare.


Rodial Makeup review

On the first day of the conference, Rodial hosted a lunch to introduce us to their brand and products. As a UK-based company, I had heard of them but hadn’t actually used any of their products before.

Each place at lunch was set with a gift bag containing their Dragon’s Blood Discovery Kit and on each placemat was one of their extremely chic Instaglam Compacts (perfect considering their audience for lunch are all Instagrammers!)

After lunch, I went and had a chat with their lovely PR lady to find out what they would recommend for mature skin, and she also very kindly gave me the day and night moisturizers in their Bee Venom range.

Since then – coming up to a month now – I have been faithfully using the cleansing water, toner (from the Dragon’s Blood set), and the two moisturizers. As someone who doesn’t like a routine that takes up too much of my time, I have found these products really easy to use.

The cleanser removes every trace of makeup, including mascara, with no irritation to the more delicate eye area. The toner is just sprayed on; what could be simpler than that?

The Dragon’s Blood range is aimed at those who want to target loss of elasticity and hydration or sensitivity. My skin definitely needs more hydration; it has been looking dull after the winter months and using this after two long-haul flights were ideal.

The Bee Venom range, on the other hand, contains a unique blend of bee venom, stem cells, and peptide technology for targeting advanced signs of aging. As someone who used to bake out in the sun in her teens and twenties (I know, if only we’d known then what we know now), I’m glad of all the help I can get in repairing any lasting damage.

So, have I noticed a difference? Well, yes, actually, I have. I wanted to give it a good few weeks to see how the products worked for me, and I can honestly say that my skin looks much brighter, feels softer, and definitely looks plumper, I’m guessing from the increased hydration.

I won’t deny these products are pricey, but the two Bee Venom moisturizers are a really decent size, and as a little goes a long way with these creams, I can see them lasting some time. And if you buy the day and night cream together, you can save 25% on the total cost too.

I highly recommend them if you have any of the issues I’ve mentioned – look at the pictures below, and you can see that my skin has a definite glow to it. Admittedly it isn’t makeup free, but I am delighted with how it looks.

As far as the Instaglam powder is concerned, I received the illuminating version, which has a universal champagne tone. It’s subtle enough to use every day, not just for evenings, and I have been! It is also a stunning palette to get out of your makeup bag for touching up your lipstick.

I have been so impressed with these products, and while they are a luxury buy, I think that now I am at a certain age, my skin deserves to be well treated. Check out their great tutorials and business advice from founder Maria Hatzistefanis on their video page too.


So on to makeup. Having met up with so many glamorous women recently, I decided that I needed to put a bit more time into my makeup routine. I have used pretty much the same products and routine for some time now, and as it is Spring, it’s time to have an overhaul and see what’s new on the market and worth trying.


Chanel Les Beiges review

Long-time readers will know that I am a bit of a Chanel makeup addict. What started with a regular need to buy their newest nail colors has extended to more of their makeup range.

Having used and loved all the Les Beiges products – Healthy Glow Fluid, CC Cream (often in place of a foundation), and Healthy Glow Powder – I was excited to hear that they have now produced a foundation in the range.

For those days when I want a little more coverage and a more polished look, this is perfect. (I use shade 30 in all of these products) I have tried out applying it with a brush, too, as advised by one makeup maestro I spoke to, but to be honest, I find I am happy enough with just using my fingers.

Unfortunately, these products have now spoilt me for anything else, and an alternative is going to have to be really good for me to swap.

One final product in the Les Beiges range, which isn’t new but which I also love so much I now want to buy another shade, is the Sheer Color Blush which comes in stick form. Although it’s a cream, once on the skin, it feels like a powder and blends to give subtle color. I have number 20, a shimmery bronze, and am now going to try number 21, a coral pink.

Going back to the nail polish addiction, Chanel has also reformulated their varnishes. I have never had much luck with making nail varnish last for more than 2 days at the most.

Whether I use a base coat, top coat, or anything else, it just doesn’t. So I was keen to try out these new longer-wearing polishes, which they have launched in a selection of some of their most popular colors.

I bought mine (shade Mythique) whilst in the US, and the consultant told me they have been designed to be ultra shiny and protective.

So, News Flash, by day four, it had started to chip, but for me, that is a real result, double what I usually get, so it looks like I am going to have to slowly replace my existing colors as they bring out new ones!


Clinique cheek pop, Estee Lauder Concealer review

Two products from Clinique – both come highly recommended. The first is their Chubby Lash Mascara. I bought this online without testing it, and when it arrived, I was a bit disappointed because I would normally choose a mascara with a brush that has longer needles (if that’s the word for them). However, I worried too soon.

This, in combination with my eyelash curlers which I have finally learned how to use, has given me super long and luscious lashes and no smearing under the eye. I love this mascara and will definitely continue to use it.

The second product is their Cheek Pop, a powder blush. These are really pretty, if nothing else. Although they are a powder, when you swirl your brush over them, there is no spillage of the particles. They literally create no mess.

They look a little daunting in the pot because they are quite bright, but on the skin, they aren’t because you can build them gradually, so you add them rather than having to remove them because the brush has picked up too much product.

I use the Melon Pop as a pop of color over the Chanel blush mentioned above. It’s a great color for warm skin tones but choose the Pink pop if you have a cooler skin tone.

Estee Lauder

Estée Lauder Bronze Goddess

One product which I jumped on from the advice I received was the Double Wear Stay In Place Flawless Concealer. Oh, those under-eye dark circles are the bane of many of us.

The problem is that many concealers I have tried tend to make the situation worse because they sit in those little creases that have started to appear under my eyes.

However, I will add that I have also been using a sample of an eye cream that the lovely Chanel consultant gave me, so I think that with the combination of this concealer has done the trick. I’ve then just added a very slight swish of powder to hold it in place.

Laura Mercier

Beauty review, Laura Mercier eye palette

So stepping out of my comfort zone, I am experimenting with more eye makeup. In the past, I would regularly experiment and don’t know why I’ve gotten out of the habit.

So I decided to try a palette that had a range of colors. This Extreme Neutrals Palette from Laura Mercier is a good option because you can start with a neutral eye and then build on it.

I have tried several looks, some more successful than others, but I have really enjoyed getting back into being more creative with my eyes.

I would recommend you start with a light and neutral color over the eyelid, then add a slightly darker shade in the crease of the eye or fractionally above if you have hooded eyes without much lid showing.

Choose a darker contrast color in the outer corner in a V shape into the crease and then blend them all together with a light neutral that has a little bit of shimmer.

This palette is perfect because it has both matte and sateen (not too much sparkle, which doesn’t work on the more mature eye) options and darker colors that you can use for a more smokey effect in the evenings.

And there we have it. I’ve found some new products that I know will become favorites (by the way, there were several other products I have tried which I didn’t like, so I haven’t included them because I would rather only recommend those products which I love and would be happy to buy myself. The only products that I didn’t personally buy were the Rodial products, and I would be happy to buy them in the future)

I hope you found this blog post helpful. If you have any questions about any of this or want to recommend any of your favorite products, do share them in the comments below.

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