Trying Out Axis-Y Skincare - The Complete No-Stress Physical Sunscreen Review

Tuesday 31 May 2022


 *This post contains gifted items.

AXIS-Y is an incredible skincare brand that has been created with the knowledge that our skin experiences an ever-growing complex environment influenced by growing pollution, stressors and climate change. With the rise of travelling, more people have realised the unique skin concerns arising by their climate and the need for more personalised skincare. 

As the first creators of climate-inspired skincare, AXIS-Y seeks to develop a higher level of personalised care for the global community. AXIS-Y is beyond clean beauty - they are inclusive and free-spirited, simple but packed with personality, young but mature, cool but approachable. I have recently been trying out two wonderful products from the brand, and so here are my thoughts...

Let's start with an everyday must-have item - the AXIS-Y Complete No-Stress Physical Sunscreen* ($23.00 for 50ml), which comes in a squeezy tube with a narrow applicator to allow you to disperse a small amount at a time. 

The AXIS-Y Complete No-Stress Physical Sunscreen uses reef-safe ingredients that leave minimal to no white-cast, no stickiness or pilling for no stress to your morning or the environment. Sunscreens that contain the active ingredients Oxybenzone and Octinoxate contribute to mass bleaching of coral reefs, and some countries are banning the use of these sunscreens to protect the oceanic habitat. 

AXIS-Y created a sunscreen that will give total protection without harming the environment. This is a Mugwort-based sunscreen which features 2% Niacinamide and Squalene that protects the skin from both UVA and UVB damage, while providing the healing properties of skin-loving ingredients for an every day, no-stress life. The Sunscreen has SPF 50+ PA ++++ and contains no artificial fragrance and so is suitable for all skin types. 

Key ingredients include Calendula, an anti-inflammatory ingredient that soothes the skin, Green Tea to soothe irritated and inflamed skin, Grape to form a protective layer on the skin Chamomile which soothes skin sensitivities due to sun exposure, Squalene which keeps skin young by fighting off free radicals, and Allantoin, which aids in the healing of skin and increases skin smoothness, fighting premature ageing. 

The core ingredient is Mugwort, which lowers the heat of the skin and clears the blood to help skin elasticity and radiance. You only need a small amount per use, applying after your skincare routine, and smoothing all over the face and neck to keep protected. The formula is non-greasy and sinks into the skin effortlessly.

You can find the AXIS-Y Complete No-Stress Physical Sunscreen online here.

All the Loves,
Kathryn xxx

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The Huda Beauty Color Block Obsessions Eyeshadow Palettes Review + Swatches

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 Some of my all-time favourite eyeshadow palettes are the Huda Beauty Obsessions Palettes and there have recently been two new releases - the Huda Beauty Color Block Obsessions Palettes in Blue & Green and Orange & Purple. I just had to share them with you as they are blimmin' gorgeous.

The Huda Beauty Color Block Obsessions Eyeshadow Palettes retail for £27.00 each and you receive nine pans, but ten colours, including one cake liner in each palette. They come in funky plastic and rubber palettes, with a mirror on the inside of the lid and these colours are not for the neutral lovers to say the least - I personally love a bit of colour!

Each palette features matte shades which are buttery and blend seamlessly on the lids, laser-cut cake liners which are water-activated eyeliners that are super pigmented and easy to layer on top of eyeshadows, powder metallics which are creamy, high-shine and pigment-packed metallic foils, duo metallics, sparkly, duo-coloured metallics with a shiny satin finish and baked flakes, metallic semi-sheer, baked flakes with dazzling, chunky shimmer.

The Orange & Purple Palette contains bright oranges, peaches, lilacs, bold purples and true purples, with a creamy purple cake liner, whilst the Blue & Green Palette houses a baby blue cake liner, a chartreuse, mint green, turquoise, indigo and bright blues. You get such a good variety of colours and textures within these small, handy palettes.

As with all Huda Beauty eyeshadow palettes, the quality is second to none, and they blend beautifully, with those intense, gorgeous shimmers and metallics. I found very minimal fall out with both palettes and my only downside is the pan that has two colours in one, as they are metallics, so I would tend to use my fingertip instead of a makeup brush, but the pan isn't big enough without you getting both colours on your fingertip. Other than that, if colour is your thing, then I would highly recommend picking these up!

You can find them online at Huda Beauty here.

All the Loves,
Kathryn xxx

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The Pacifica Lash Serum Primer & Fluffy Lash Mascara Review

Monday 30 May 2022

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 Pacifica is a lovely American beauty brand that is vegan and cruelty free, with a host of skincare, bodycare and make up items. I have recently been trying the Pacifica Lash Serum Primer and Fluffy Lash Mascara, and so I thought I would let you know all about them...

The Pacifica Lash Serum Primer (£18.00 for 7g) comes in a pretty ombre glass tube (no plastic here!) and combs through each lash to prime and condition them to make way for healthier, fuller-looking lashes. The vegan collagen formula works instantly to thicken the lashes for a natural full look before you have even applied your mascara. Coated in white, this primer enhances the colour of your mascara, whilst Vitamins B and E lend conditioning power to keep the lashes healthy, and Plant Wax helps to prevent breakage - a must when you are trying to remove waterproof mascara. Kaolin Clay locks onto every single lash to prep the surface for mascara. I have often used a lash primer because I have fair, fine, straight, short lashes, and I love this one so much as it really does condition my often-weak lashes whilst also adding volume and a protective layer. As the name suggests, this is a lash primer and so you simply wiggle the wand from root to tip to coat the lashes, and then let set for one minute before applying mascara.

Once you have your lashes primed and conditioned, you can then apply the Pacifica Fluffy Lash Mascara (£20.00 for 7g). This comes in the same pretty pink and lilac glass packaging and not only looks good, but does good too. The Pacifica Fluffy Lash Mascara makes your lashes long, curly and full of volume, whilst also coating them in a super-conditioning vegan collagen formula. The wand has a spiral bristle brush applicator and rolls an ultra-glossy, hyper-black formula on to each and every lash. For extra length, the mascara is packed with tiny, plant-based fibres which hook onto your natural lashes. It is a very comfortable formula to wear, and coats my mediocre lashes really well, not budging or smudging throughout the day. I wear contact lenses and have quite sensitive eyes, and this doesn't irritate my eyes whatsoever. I love the natural, volumising formula and it works so well with the Primer. You can of course use them both separately, together or with other products. For a more natural look, apply one coat of the mascara or for more drama, add a second coat.

You can find Pacifica online at Cult Beauty here.

All the Loves,
Kathryn xxx

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The MoYou x Jurassic Park Nail Polish Collection Review + Swatches

Sunday 29 May 2022

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 *This post contains gifted items.

MoYou is a wonderful nail polish brand that not only sells nail polishes, but nail care and the most amazing nail stencils you will find! I recently tried out some of the MoYou Jurassic Park Nail Polishes* and so had to share them with you...

There are lots of different themed collections you can get from MoYou and I adored the different greens in this collection (there are other colours in the Jurassic Park range, but I went for the greens), so decided to try all five different greens. The Polishes retail for £6.99 and you receive 9ml of product.

The shades I chose are:
* Claws Out - a pale green
* Little & Wild - a Spring green
* It Can Camouflage! - an olive green
* I'm A Veggiesaurus - a khaki green
* Save The Nature - a deep forest green

Each Polish comes with a gold lid, which you then pop off, and it has a smaller handled brush so it is easier to control and hold. I find the formula to dry fast and one coat is often sufficient, lasting a good amount of time on the nails without chipping. The Polishes are perfect as nail polishes, of course, but they also work really well for stamping with the nail stencils they do.

All MoYou Nail Polishes have five-free formulas and are both cruelty-free and vegan. I found them super easy to apply onto my nails and the narrow brush allowed for a more precise application, which is perfect for me as I am in no way a nail polish pro. The range of colours is fabulous too, and I like to wear these five either on their own, or one of each colour on each nail as they work beautifully together.

You can find MoYou Nail Polishes online here.

All the Loves,
Kathryn xxx

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The Revlon Oil Control On The Go Oil-Absorbing Roller Review

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  I tend to get a very oily t-zone throughout the day, but I have never been one to use those little oil-absorbing sheets as it is too much faffing about for me. I recently picked up the Revlon Oil Control On The Go Oil-Absorbing Roller and it is a revolution!

The Revlon Oil Control On The Go Oil-Absorbing Roller retails for £12.99 and the roller is made from real volcanic stone that instantly absorbs excess oil on the go. Unlike blotting papers that are single-use and then thrown away, this oil-absorbing roller is re-usable and easy to wash. The secret is real volcanic stone, which is incredibly efficient for blotting oily skin.

It is suitable for all skin types and is small enough to pop in a little handbag, as well as having a cap that locks into place so you don't get dirt or dust on the stone itself. It can be used on clean skin or on top of makeup, which is why it is so handy for when you are out and about. It is so easy to use - you simply roll the stone over your t-zone or anywhere you have excess oil, and it takes away the oil instantly and I find that I only usually have to use it once a day.

As I mentioned, it is also super easy to clean - you twist the locking ring around the stone to unlock, and then remove the volcanic stone. Wash it with warm water and a gentle cleanse, rinse and allow to air-dry overnight before you lock it back in. I have not come across something this effective ever I believe and it is a life saver as I really dislike looking oily and then I don't have to take a powder and a makeup brush with me and it keeps nice and clean in my bag.

You can find the Revlon Oil Control On The Go Oil-Absorbing Roller online here.

All the Loves,
Kathryn xxx

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The Next x Bath & Body Works Ultimate Beauty Box

Saturday 28 May 2022

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 I first discovered Bath & Body Works when I was a little girl in York, and all of a sudden they closed all the stores. Since the age of 15 I have travelled to America every year and one shop I always went to was Bath & Body Works, as we had nothing like it over here - the stores were beautiful and the products were fun and different. I used to bring so many Bath & Body Works products home in my suitcase, and over the past 2-3 years, due to Covid, I have had to order via re-sellers in the UK, which is often pretty pricey! Anywho, Next decided to start selling Bath & Body Works online, which was mega exciting for me as it meant I had immediate access to the brand. They recently released the Next x Bath & Body Works Ultimate Beauty Box, and whether you are new to the brand, or a keen fan, I would highly recommend checking it out!

The Next x Bath & Body Works Ultimate Beauty Box retails for just £30.00, and has a value of £87.00 (the candles cost £29.50 alone), so you are getting an excellent deal to try out the brand. You receive five full sized products in their cult Japanese Cherry Blossom and Gingham fragrances. Bath & Body Works do a men's range too, and I adore those scents as I prefer quite musky, woody fragrances, but both of these are very enjoyable too.

The first thing you receive is the Bath & Body Works Japanese Cherry Blossom Gentle Foaming Hand Soap, and I use these all the time - I never use any other kind of hand wash in my bathroom. Even though they are pricier than most other hand washes, they always smell incredible and the scent lingers. A little goes a long way as it is a liquid that turns into a foam and so they do last a good amount of time. Japanese Cherry Blossom is made up of Cherry Blossoms, Asian Pear and Sandalwood and so it isn't too sweet or floral.

You then get the Bath & Body Works Gingham Fine Fragrance Mist, which is worth £16.00. These are really great alternatives to perfume, and I always remember when I used to wear a Coconut version, that my friend used to know when I had gotten to work as she could smell me in the stair well haha! You get 236ml in each bottle and so they last a long amount of time compared to a regular perfume and you get enough of a scent to last on the skin throughout the day. Gingham is a fresh scent that contains Blue Freesia, White Peach, Fresh Clementine and Violet.

£16.00 is pricey for a shower gel, although certainly not the most expensive on the market. In America, you do get amazing deals at Bath & Body Works so they do come cheaper than over here, but I guess we pay a premium for being able to buy them here. The Bath & Body Works Gingham Shower Gel contains Shea and Vitamin E to nourish the skin and the formula is rich and bubbly, so you only need a small amount. I love how soft and nourished their Shower Gels leave my skin feeling and like with all of their products, you can smell the fragrance on your skin afterwards too.

The Bath & Body Works Body Lotions are also super lovely, and you receive one in the Japanese Cherry Blossom fragrance. Just like with the Shower Gel, the formula contains Shea Butter and Vitamin E, and so it is super nourishing on the skin. The formula is luxurious without feeling heavy on the skin, and it sinks into the skin quickly so you don't have to stand around in the nuddy waiting for it to dry. I have quite sensitive skin and I have been using these for years and never had a problem, so even though they are scented, I find it never irritates my skin, but does leave it smelling lovely.

Probably one of the most popular products from the brand are the candles, and you receive the Bath & Body Works Gingham Scented Candle. This is a three-wick candle that comes in a glass jar with a metal lid and people go crazy for these in America when the sales are on. In my opinion, they by far beat Yankee Candle, and I rarely buy any other brand of candle. The scent can be smelt all over the house when you light one of these candles and they seem to last for ages. Here in the UK, they sell for £29.50, which is pretty expensive, but the quality and longevity far outweighs any other.

At the time of writing, this box is now currently out of stock, but Next are always releasing different beauty boxes, so I would definitely check them out here.

All the Loves,
Kathryn xxx

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The It's A 10 Miracle Leave-In Product Review

Friday 27 May 2022

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 *This post contains gifted items.

I first heard of the It's A 10 Miracle Leave-In Product* (£18.50 for 120ml) probably around 6-7 years ago whilst watching an American You Tuber, who always raved about it, but at the time it was never available in the UK. The brand since came to the UK a couple of years ago, maybe before Covid I think, and so I was super thrilled to be able to try it. I have reviewed some other products from the brand on here, so I thought it was about time I shared with you their cult hero product.

As the brand name suggests, this haircare staple has ten benefits:
* Inhibits dry, damaged hair
* Adds shine to the hair
* Detangles
* Controls frizz
* Seals and protects hair colour
* Helps prevent split ends
* Stops hair breakage
* Creates silkiness
* Enhances natural body
* Protects from heated styling tools

If you suffer from dull, damaged hair, then this is going to be your new best friend. It is easy to use and smooths out the hair, eliminating frizz, restoring shine and enhancing your hair's natural body. Miracle Leave-In is full of natural ingredients, such as Sunflower Seed and Green Tea Leaf Extract and Silk Amino Acids, to help bring out all hair types' natural lustre and shine, whilst also making your hair stronger and healthier with every single use.

Apart from obviously, all of those amazing qualities, the one reason I love Miracle Leave-In so much is that it is so quick and easy to include in my haircare routine. You simply spritz the spray all over washed hair, comb through and then blow dry or style as normal - that's it, it does the hard work so you don't have to. There is no stickiness or residue left behind and you cannot feel it in the hair, ensuring a lightweight finish.

You can find the It's A 10 Miracle Leave-In Product online here.

All the Loves,
Kathryn xxx

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The NARS Blush In Thrill Review + Swatches

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 We all (myself included) went mad for the Dior Rosy Glow Blush, which then preceded to sell out everywhere, so I have recently been trying a few similar shades of blush to try and create the same look, and even though it isn't much cheaper, the NARS Blush in the shade Thrill is definitely a winner.

NARS Blushes come in 25 shades, so there are plenty of beautiful colours to choose from, but Thrill is the most like the Dior Rosy Glow out of them all. It retails at £27.50 for 4.8g and comes in the traditional soft-feel black compact that the other NARS blushes do (yes, the ones that attract every speck of makeup). 

Thrill is a matte cool light pink and when applied to the skin, it is 99% similar to Dior Rosy Glow. I have used up over half of my Dior Rosy Glow, I use it that much, as the colour just really flatters my skintone, and so it is fabulous to find an alternative just in case I can't get hold of the Dior one. NARS Blushes are buildable and blendable and give a weightless, natural-looking rush of colour to the cheeks. The formula is softy and silky and looks flawless on the skin. You can apply a light flush of colour, or build it up for a more intense look.

As I mentioned, I know the price is only £2.00 cheaper, so it isn't a drugstore dupe or anything like that, but with Dior products selling like hotcakes at the moment, it is great to be able to find an alternative that is more readily available. If you are wanting Dior Rosy Glow and you cannot get a hold of it, then I would definitely suggest trying out Thrill by NARS.

You can find it online here.

All the Loves,
Kathryn xxx

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The Best Of Nail Colour and Care

Thursday 26 May 2022

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 *This post contains gifted items.

Since being unemployed, beauty treatments are a thing of the past, and so I have been taking much more care with my nails and painting them myself. In today's post, I will be sharing with you some of my favourite nail colour and nail care products...

Let's start with Essie Nail Polish, a cult favourite of mine - anyone remember Mint Candy Apple? The Essie Nail Lacquers retail for £7.99 for 13.5ml and come in a wide range of colours and finishes. With Essie, you can expect intense rich colour with high coverage, a wide brush for quick, easy and smooth application, high shine with a glossy finish and a professional long-lasting, chip-resistant formula. Three colours I am loving at the moment are Check Your Baggage, a warm yellow, You Do Blue, a cornflower blue with an iridescent finish and Check In To Check Out, a fun peach orange.

For pesky cuticles, I would highly recommend the Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover (£4.40 for 29.5ml). This revolutionary gel formula features Chamomile and Aloe and is gentle on the cuticles. To use, simply squeeze a thin strip of the formula around the cuticles and under nail tips. After 15 seconds, gently push back the cuticles with a manicure stick wrapped in cotton. Wash off the excess product immediately and thoroughly, to reveal cuticle-free nail beds! I have used this product for years and it is definitely the most effective cuticle remover I have come across so far.

The Diego Dalla Palma Nail Polish* is a vegan formula that comes in many stunning shades. They retail at £10.50 each for 14ml and here I have the classic shades Cappuccino, a wonderful warm nude, and Mystic Red, a vampy blood red. The professional-grade, chip-resistant formula delivers a top-notch manicure with a high shine, glossy finish. The maxi brush hugs the nail's contours to deposit smooth and even coverage, leaving your nails looking groomed, polished and cared for.

To condition the nails, a great product is the Famous Names Dadi'Oil Nail Treatment*, retailing at £11.95 for 14.3ml. This blend of 95% certified organic oils, fortified with Natural Vitamin E, penetrates for the ultimate in nail flexibility and shine. It contains a whole host of skin-loving ingredients such as Avocado Oil, Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Jojoba Oil and as well as using it on the nails, you can use it to moisturise the skin as well! Simply apply to the top and underside of the nail and massage into the nail plate and surrounding skin to condition and moisturise.

I have featured Nail Kind Nail Polish* on my blog many times before as I love their natural, vegan formula. There are so many pretty shades available and they retail at just £8.95. The formula is gentle on the nails and they dry down to a fabulous, glossy finish. Here are some of my favourite colour picks for Summer - Own It!, a hot magenta pink, Santorini Bikini, a bright, lagoon blue and Lime Time, a funky lime green. I think these are such great value for the quality of ingredients and the colour payoff you get - one coat is normally enough with most shades.

One of my favourite base coats is the CND Stickey Anchoring Base Coat (£5.40 for 9.8ml) and it is a soft, sticky base coat that anchors colour to the nails, keeping it securely in place and resistant to everyday wear and tear. The 3-Free formula does not contain Formaldehyde, Toluene or DBP, so you can feel comfortable using it regularly. This helps to prevent surface staining of the natural nails, plus improves the wearability of your nail colour due to the innovative adhesive formula.

Nail HQ is a specialist nail brand and they have a wide range of both nail treatments and nail colours. The Nail HQ Nail Polishes' highly pigmented formulas provide a silky smooth application and a deep glossy high-shine finish. They retail for just £6.99 for 10ml, and so the price point is excellent for such high quality nail polishes, and with such a wide choice of colours to choose from there is something for everyone. I think you can't go wrong with a classic red, like this Rose shade or a ballerina pink like Blossom.

A cuticle oil which I have been using quite a lot lately is the Essie Apricot Cuticle Oil (£9.99 for 13.5ml). This cuticle oil conditions the nails and hydrates cuticles, so you are less likely to get wicks on the skin around your nails. I find this super quick to absorb and the formula is 97% natural and features Apricot Kernel Oil and Jojoba Oil to intensely condition, leaving your cuticles much softer, and therefore giving you a perfect frame for your manicure. A little goes a long way too, so this bottle will last you ages!

The Morgan Taylor Full Bloom* (£9.00 each) collection was released in March for Spring and the colours are so pretty, with a range of pinks, blues and greens. My favourites are Plant One On Me, a soft yummy pink, Bloom Service, a teal green and Best Buds, a pale blue. Morgan Taylor creates such beautiful shades and the polishes are created from speciality raw ingredients to enhance the finish, coverage and wear. The colour payoff is smooth, even, long-lasting colour with a gorgeous professional finish. I love to wear either one shade on its own or mix up a few different colours on my nails to create something different.

Due to ill health, I have quite ridged nails at the moment and one base coat which I love to even things out is the Essie Smooth-E Base Coat (£8.99 for 13.5ml). The Ceramide-infused formula applies effortlessly to fill in ridges and bumps, whilst smoothing the appearance of imperfections on the nail surface. It also helps to prevent nail staining and creates a smooth base for a longer-lasting manicure. Essie is one of my all-time favourite nail brands as I always find them so reliable.

If you like to match your nails to your lipstick, then I would highly recommend checking out the Emolyne Metamorphosis Gel Lacquer* (£13.00 for 13ml). Both the lipsticks and nail polishes are available in 30 shades of reds, pinks and nudes to suit all skin tones. Here I have the shade Tanzania, a pinky brown. The nail polish is quick-drying and gives a gel effect to create a gorgeous manicure. The formula dries down ultra-glossy and is highly pigmented and much cheaper than going for a gel manicure at the salon. I absolutely love the idea that you can match your nails to your lipstick, it is such a fun thing to do!

As well as conditioning the nails, it is also important to look after your hands too. The Palmer's Coconut Hydrate Hand Cream* (£2.49 for 60g) and Palmer's Cocoa Butter Hand Cream* (£2.09 for 60g) are perfect for keeping the hands and nails moisturised. Both hand creams intensively moisturise the skin, using Cocoa Butter, or Coconut Oil and Vitamin E. They provide up to 48 hours moisture and the formula sinks into the skin instantly, so you can go about your day. The tubes are plentiful, but still a handy size to keep in your handbag or on your desk. A little goes a long way too, so these are amazing value!

The Benecos Happy Nails Nail Polishes* are plant based and so do not contain any harsh ingredients and are not tested on animals. There are lots of beautiful colours to choose from and at just £4.95 for 5ml, they are purse-friendly too! The formula contains nourishing Avocado Oil and Biotin to help strengthen the nails and care for them. The brush is fairly wide, so application is super easy and I find the formula lasts a good amount of time on my nails before wearing off. The shade I have here is called Hot Summer, a vibrant pink with underlying orange tones and is the perfect colour for the warmer months!

All the Loves,
Kathryn xxx

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