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When it comes to investing in great makeup, I’m always prone to picking out neutral shades. They’re the ones I know I’ll be reaching for day after day, so the cost per wear really becomes surprisingly affordable. So, if you’re in the market for a gloss which you’ll be reach for each morning, By Terry’s Lip-Expert Shine in 01 Baby Beige is your best shot.

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Packaged in the brand’s sleek bullet-like casing, the gloss is a beautiful cool-toned beige which feels both chic and understated. The whole lineup feels beautifully effortless, and the formulas could not be more comfortable to wear.

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I’ve been wearing No 1 Baby Beige on a near daily basis since getting my hands on it. The  cool-toned beige is a perfect pairing with naturally smokey eye, but I even love smoothing a little on, on days when I’m just wearing a little bronzer as it makes me look and feel a little more polished.

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The formula is super comfortable to wear – it’s silky smooth, and feels lightweight yet surprisingly hydrating on the lips. Smoothed on with the doe foot applicator, the gloss gives lips a sheer wash of colour which lasts around two hours per application.

By Terry Lip-Expert Shine Lip Glosses are priced at £29 each and are available here (UK) and here (US)

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When it comes to skin, I like mine as soft and as glowy as possible. Living in Scotland and  having dry skin, it’s not always possible. No matter how many acids, scrubs and masks I use, I feel like my skin can always use a bit of TLC. So, in my efforts to get the best skin possible, I’ve been visiting Zen Lifestyle every two to three weeks for one of their DiamondTome Facials. Designed to resurface and rejuvenate skin, it’s a microdermabrasion treatment which gets skin feeling like brand new. I started treatments in January in a haze of New Years Resolutions, and I’ve been returning on a three-week basis as the results have been so incredible.

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The treatments can last either 30 or 50 minutes, and they’re a perfect way to carve out a little ‘me’ time during a busy week. The Hanover Street salon feels like a true sanctuary, so getting to lie down and relax for a bit, is a real treat. The facials start off with a thorough cleanse to get rid of any makeup or pollution – I don’t wear makeup on days when I’m getting the facials purely for ease. Once skin is cleansed, the therapist DiamondTome machine – quickly works the wand over the face, neck and décolletage.

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‘llSince the therapist can see your problem areas, you can really target any issues, and it’s so lovely to be able to lie back and just zone out for a bit. If you’ve chosen the 30 minute treatment, once you’ve been exfoliated, skin is treated with a range of serums and moisturisers by MediKate and Murad, and you’re good to go. If you’ve opted for the longer treatment, you then get to enjoy a gel mask, and red light treatment. The light treatment works to promote healing within the skin, reducing redness. Once it’s finished, skin is treated with a curated selection of serums and moisturiser, and you’re good to go. Skin feels absolutely incredible, and the results last for a good few weeks. When I get home, I tend to layer on a rich cream (Weleda Skin Food is a favourite) and I’m good to go. It’s an incredible treatment to have before a big event, as it smoothes and perfects skin, meaning I don’t need as much makeup as usual.

The facials have made such a difference to my skin, and I am a complete convert!

DiamondTome Facials are priced at £55 for a 30 minute facial and £85 for the 50 minute treatment.

 

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When it comes to products, I’m guilty of sticking to a pretty neutral (and repetitive) colour palette. If it’s eyeshadow, it’s going to be a cool-toned taupe, if it’s mascara it’s black, and if it’s a lipstick or gloss, it’s usually clear or nude. It means getting ready is easy, but every so often, I can feel a little bored with my old faithfuls. So, when stunning shades like By Terry’s Orchid Cream pop up, it can feel like kismet. Especially at this time of year, when I’m starting to add a little more colour into my every day.

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One of 16 shades available in the By Terry Lip-Expert Shine collection, No 11 Orchid Cream is a stunning purple/pink shade which is just aching to be worn on sunny spring days. Slightly blue in tone, if you were a fan of Mac’s Snob lipstick, this feels like it’s more grown up (and glossier) cousin. Described as a ‘vinyl lipstick’ by the brand, it’s a gloss where you can very much control the colour payoff. Applied to the lips and blended with a finger, the Lip-Expert Shine leaves lips with a subtle wash of colour and shine, whilst applied directly with the doe foot applicator, The wear-time, for a lip gloss is excellent, especially when applied directly – I can easily get two or three hours of wear before needing to reapply. On the lips, the formula feels glossy and balmy, yet it’s incredibly lightweight and not at all sticky or gloopy. It also smells divine – a lightly floral, violent scent.

All in all, By Terry’s Liquid Lipsticks are among my favourites! They’re priced at £29 each and available here (UK) and here (US)

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It can feel like every time you visit Edinburgh, there is a new spot to visit, and as a result, my wish list of haunts grows longer by the week. One of the spots on my hit list was Otro,  a stunning Italian restaurant set in the heart of the Capital’s West End. I’d heard so many people rave about their a la carte options as well as their Sunday lunches, so when an invitation to join them for an evening of wine and cheese popped up, I couldn’t resist!

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The evening, held in association with independent Scottish wine merchants L’Art du Vin and fromage icons I.J Mellis Cheesemongers, was just the ticket for a chilly mid-week evening. As someone who loves a good cheese, but isn’t the world’s biggest wine aficionado, I always appreciate a little guidance on what goes with what, and my evening at Otro did not disappoint.

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Although Otro don’t seem to host these wine and cheese evenings regularly, all the wines served are on their wine list, and staff have all been trained to know exactly what goes with what, so you’ll be in good hands when you visit.

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We kicked off proceedings with a Ragstone Goat Cheese and Fendant, les Deux Cimes, Valais – a Swiss white wine grown by a Scotsman. The pairing was divine, and the wine my favourite. Dry and zesty, it was an easy drink which I kept returning to throughout the night. It paired with with the tang of the Ragstone, and cut through the cheese’s creaminess.

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Next up was the Tunworth Brie which we enjoyed with Le Joufflu – a rich well-bodied red. Although not technically a brie (the Tunworth is English after all), it is a wonderfully savoury option which I regularly pick up from Mellis’ St. Andrews location. The wine is from a niche grower, who have their own Parisian wine bar located in the Marais, so getting to try it felt like such a treat!

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The most traditional of the cheeses on offer was Barwhey’s Cheddar – a rich and creamy cheddar which feels absolutely made to be enjoyed as part of a Ploughman’s Lunch. Served alongside Mellis’ own Beetroot Relish it was really special. Served alongside  Hacienda Grimon, the pairing  packed a serious amount of flavour.

The evening finished with Bleu de Causses paired with an absolutely delicious Maury, Domain Lefage. The mix of rich blue cheese and sweet dessert wine was perfectly balanced, and I loved how the cheese didn’t feel too overpowering. It felt like a perfect way to end an evening, and we’re already planning a return visit!

Thank you to Otro for hosting the event, you can find out more about the restaurant here.

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When it comes to skincare, my favourite thing in the world is a truly great exfoliation. It leaves skin soft, smooth and glowing, but I also love to feel silky softness a good scrub gives skin. So, I absolutely jumped at the chance to try the rather iconic ExfoliKate – an intensive exfoliating skin treatment.

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Since Christmas, I’ve been getting salon exfoliation treatments every two weeks or so, and in the meantime, I’ve been using the ExfoliKate to extend my results. Once or twice a week, when my skin is starting to feel a little dull, I make sure to give my skin a good cleanse, then slap on the ExfoliKate. It’s not called a ‘Hollywood Facial’ for nothing, and if you’re not a fan of products you can feel working, this might not be the scrub for you. I love a product which tingles though, so it’s right up my street. Rather than relying on physical or chemical exfoliants, the ExfoliKate has both.

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The green formula includes lactic acid as well as fruit enzymes, which work with the gritty texture to leave skin radiant. It only takes two minutes to get to work on the skin – I tend to massage it into the skin for the first 30-40 seconds or so, then leave it, then wash off using warm water and clean flannel, following the treatment up with a good whack of an intensive moisturiser (Weleda’s Skin Food is a real favourite). The result is skin which looks and feels fresh and glowing. Since the ingredients are pretty active, I wouldn’t use it any more regularly than once per week without fear of causing a flareup, but it’s perfect to use the night before an event or meeting, and I wouldn’t be without a tube of it now!

Kate Somerville ExfoliKate is priced at £72 and is available here (UK) and here (US)

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