If truly taking care of your skin is one of your 2020 resolutions, taking a look at what you use is probably going to be your first step in creating your perfect routine. As a rule, I wash my face morning and night – no matter whether I’ve had a full face of makeup on or not – just the idea of heading to bed with dirt and grime on my face freaks me out (plus heading to bed with a freshly moisturised face is truly one of life’s joys) so I’m always keen to find new ways to effectively cleanse.
My beautiful box of This is Silk Silk Cleansing Cloths arrived just before Christmas, and I’ve been using them consistently ever since. An upgrade on my regular cleansing muslins, I keep my silk cloths for evening cleanses, when I need a little extra ‘oomph’ and use them with my regular cleanser after taking my eye makeup off.
Packaged in boxes of three, the silk cloths are gently textured and work to exfoliate, smooth and condition skin thanks to the silk amino acids found naturally within the fibres. The cloths aren’t silky like you might expect, but they’re a little thicker and rougher which provide a gentle sloughing action. If you’ve got sensitive or reactive skin, these cloths are an absolute godsend if you want to enjoy a gentle exfoliation.
To keep things hygienic, I wash the cloths after each use, simply popping them into the washing machine and using a detergent suitable for silk. I’ve found that the cloths let me foam up my cleansers, which makes my skin feel super-clean and refreshed after using.
If you’d like to upgrade your cleansing routine, a box of three silk cleansing cloths is priced at £25.99 and are available here.
Last year was probably the first time that I really started to introduce retinol into my skincare regime. I’d been reading about its benefits for a while – particularly in US magazines, who touted it as a bit of a miracle product, but I was a bit weary. If you get it wrong, using an overly-strong retinol can dry and dehydrate skin, and as someone looking to maintain hydration levels at all times – that can be pretty disastrous. At the tail end of the year, though, Grounded sent over their Egyptian Gold Anti Ageing Retinol Facial Serum, and I’m so glad that I gave it a go!
Unlike other retinol-heavy products, Grounded have combined the powerful anti-ageing properties of retinol (at 1%) with hydrating Hyaluronic Acid, and the result is a serum which leaves skin looking and feeling refreshed.
Since I have skin which can be sensitive and reactive, I only use retinol at night (since it promotes cell turnover, you have to be careful to use sunblocks after using). After cleansing, I tap a few drops of the serum into freshly-cleansed skin, and then follow up with a rich night cream or hydrating oil. In the morning, my skin feels super soft, and it looks much more even too! Retinol is one of the few ways to combat redness – so if you’re looking for a product which will work to make your skin better within only a few weeks – this it the serum to try!
Grounded Egyptian Gold Anti Ageing Retinol Face Serum is priced at £39.99 and is available here
This Saturday marks Chinese New Year, and 2020 is the Year of the Rat – a symbol of vitality, so to celebrate, Bobbi Brown have released their new Luck & Fortune Collection. An edit of four products for eyes, lips and face, which will have you looking your best all weekend long.
The Luxe Lip Color comes in a stunning limited edition cherry red casing, and you can choose from three shades – Pink Sapphire, Parisian Red, and Rare Ruby. As you’d imagine, they’re saturated formulas, which feel more like a balm to apply, and leave lips looking and feeling great for hours. Some of the boldest shades on offer from Bobbi Brown, I love how glamorous the lipsticks feel – and the packaging is an absolute show-stopper!
Rare Ruby is the deepest option of the three, and is the most fabulous deep, brick red shade, and I’m just obsessed with how hydrating the formula feels to wear. Patted on with a finger, it gives lips a pretty berry-red glow, and applied from the tube, the colour is far stronger and more intense. If, like me, strong colours can feel a little intimidating, Rare Ruby, paired with a neutral makeup look really makes for a modern look.
The whole collection is absolutely stunning, but I just love how beautiful the Luxe Lip Colors are, and the fabulous glamour they bring to my otherwise neutral makeup bag. Incredibly comfortable to wear, and in a choice of three stunning shades – it’s the perfect way to acknowledge the new year, as well as treat yourself to a lipstick you’ll be reaching for all year long!
Gong hei fat choy!
Bobbi Brown’s Rare Ruby Luxe Lip Color is priced at £28 and is available here (UK) and here (US)
When it comes to designer investments, I often find sunglasses are a great place to start. There’s something about a really great pair which can truly transform an outfit, and a well-placed accessory can make an affordable outfit look (and feel) a hundred times more expensive.
When it comes to buying sunglasses, I’m incredibly picky. Frames have to be chunky, over-sized and classic in shape. I hate anything too fiddly or identifiable, which is why I’ve fostered a bit of an obsession with Celine frames. Understated and elegant, their frames are classics which I pull out all year long. My most recent purchase are these Shadows. This two-toned is a fun update on my usual choice of tortoiseshell, and I’m obsessed with the navy fade, which will look as great when paired with a pair of jeans, as when they’re dressed up with a coat.
In my experience, Celine make some of the best quality sunglasses out there – chunky and sturdy enough to survive a few drops and falls, these have already established their spot in my handbag!
Celine Shadow Sunglasses are priced at £371 and are available here
I’m not sure I’m the greatest person at following through on resolutions. Like most people, I like to take a look at where I could try a bit harder at the beginning of each year, but in the past I’ve been way too overenthusiastic, so now I make sure that all my goals are a little easier to follow through on.
One of mine for 2020 was to make sure I don’t get stuck in a rut. As a person, I’m a bit of a creature of habit, and that follows through to things like my makeup bag and most reached-for products. So, when I got the chance to try Kat von D’s Sinner Eau de Perfume, I absolutely jumped at the chance. As a rule, I tend to reach for fragrances which centre on orange blossom, gardenia or citrus, Sinner is a deeper, darker take on my usual. From the ornate, gothic-style bottle, I knew this wasn’t like my usual take on perfumes, and I’m so glad that I decided to try something new and a bit different!
An Oriental Floral, with top notes of mandarin orange, orange blossom and plum, this feels like a perfect winter scent. I’ve been wearing it in the evenings, or spritzed onto cashmere sweaters. As the fragrance wears, notes of white flowers, jasmine and cinnamon become more noticeable. There’s a real musky sweetness which comes from vanilla in the perfume’s base notes, and the mix of flowers with the base of vetiver and patchouli feels beautifully grown up. I was really surprised at how affordable Sinner is too – it wears like something far more expensive!
Kat von D’s Sinner Eau de Parfum is priced from £26 and is available here (UK) and here (US)