spring nails 2016
I haven’t spoken about nail polish in a little while on ALO but since it’s Manicure Monday and the first day of Drugstore week I thought I would share my spring picks.

A quick note on Manicure Monday, I have stopped doing it as I have become a little bit of a shellac addict but do let me know if you miss them and I might be tempted to ditch the gel.

I get particularly excited about nails in spring and summer, I love pastels and slightly more daring colours, often teamed with more natural bronzy makeup. I think the nails is a really easy place to play with colour and I don’t believe there is any reason to pay lots of ££ for nail polish when drugstore ones are so good- in fact none of these are over £7!

Rimmel Super Gel in Bare Hug– it might be spring but you always need a nude in your nail polish wardrobe, this one is a really beautiful greige, which is surprisingly flattering and easy to wear.

Bourjois 1 Seconde in Jamais Saumon Vernis – I love how quick and easy the Bourjois 1 Seconde Polishes are to apply as they have beautiful fanned out brush with a great long lid which makes it really comfortable to hold. This colour is a fun but subtle peachy shade that would look particularly beautiful paired with a tan.

Avon Gel Shine in Mint to Be- I’ve been avoiding mint polishes all winter but I have heard great things about these Avon Gel Shine polishes and although I am yet to try it I couldn’t help but include it, so pretty!

Topshop Nails in Leigh- I am in love with the new denim inspired Topshop and Leigh is my favourite, I love pale blue polishes, they’re so fun and spring-y.

Barry M Speedy in Freestyle- These Barry M Speedy Quick Dry Polishes are my go-to when I’m in a rush as they really do dry quickly, I’m loving this pale pink which I would happily wear for months on end.

Barry M Coconut Infusion in Flamingo- The newest range from Barry M, this is the ultimate tan colour and I cant wait to pain my toes with this colour!


Today is a bit of a preview to my absolute favourite drugstore products which I will share with you tomorrow but I thought I would quickly go through the UK drugstore brands, what products I like and which I love. I’m hoping it might help anyone that is a little scared of drugstore, looking for great affordable products or someone coming to the UK and looking to get a few products which you might not be able to get in other countries.

B. (available here)
My top pick: Brush Cleanser
Available exclusively in Superdrugs B. is quite a new brand and I haven’t tried too much from them, their brushes are quite nice but their brush cleanser is my favourite!

Barry M (available here)
My top pick: Nail Paints
One of the best brands to pick up whilst in the UK as it still isn’t too widely available everywhere else, their Dazzle Dust are quite underrated if you love shimmery shadow but their nail paints are a must try and very affordable. They offer everything from nail care to glitter and gel effect polishes.

Bourjois (available here)
My top pick: Healthy Balance Powder
Available quite readily in Europe Bourjois has really high quality products at great prices. Although their foundations break me out I think they are a great drugstore option for anyone that doesn’t have sensitive skin. Their blushers are some of my absolute favourites but their concealers and lipsticks are also worth a look.

Collection (available here)
My top pick: Lasting Perfection Concealer
Very affordable drugstore brand, I personally find the Lasting Perfection Concealer a little drying but it’s very affordable and highly rated by so many people that it’s a must try.

Gosh (available here)
My top pick: Velvet Touch Liners
Surprisingly this was the hardest brand for me to pick a top product from, everything is nice but there isn’t really anything I can’t live without. Other than the Velvet liners, the lipsticks and blushers are also both really nice.

L’Oreal (available here)
My top pick: True Match Foundation
L’Oreal True Match foundation is an absolute must have with a nice colour selection but the liners, neutral eyeshadow palettes and lipsticks are also worth picking up.

Makeup Revolution (available here)
My top pick: Eyeshadow Palettes
Known for offering affordable alternative to cult beauty products, their palettes and lipsticks are great alternatives to highend brands.

MaxFactor (available here)
My top pick: Mascaras
Although I love the whole range, no other drugstore brand offers better volumising mascaras than MaxFactor, I don’t have a particular favourite but all the ones I have tried have been great.

Maybelline (available here)
My top pick: Instant Eye Eraser Concealer
Great all round brand but the Instant Eye Eraser is a great alternative to highend concealers and I would quite happily swap my usual cocnealer for it. I also really like Dream Flawless Nude Foundation, Brow Satin Eye Pencil and their Color Sensational Lipsticks.

Models Own (available here)
My top pick: Nail Polishes
Models Own started by offering nail polishes and I still think it’s what they do best. My favourite colours are Beach Bag and Utopia although their Hypergel and glitters are generally great ranges.

MUA (available here)
My top pick: Luxe Velvet Lipsticks
Anther super inexpensive UK beauty brand, their eyeshadow palettes are also great value for money!

Real Techniques (available here)
My top pick: Core Collection brushes
Probably my favourite brush brand, their original collection is still by far my favourite along with their sponge, I would personally skip the bold metals collection (although they look beautiful) as they’re pricier and not as soft.

Revlon (available here)
My top pick: Colorstay Foundation (particularly for oily skins)
Revlon is a great brand for almost everything and it has quite a makeup artist feel to it. If you like lip crayons then Revlon do the best affordable ones.

Rimmel (available here)
My top pick: Exaggerate Lipliner in Eastend Snob
Theres so many great items from Rimmel, the whole Exaggerate range is excellent, I love their lipsticks and I reach for their foundations and concealers regularly.

Sleek Makeup (available here)
My top pick: Contour Kit
Has a special place in my heart as I use to blog about Sleek endlessly when I first started blogging. Palettes, blushers and Matte Me in Birthday Suit are all well loved in my collection.

Soap & Glory (available here)
My top pick: Kick Ass Concealer
Slightly higher price point in comparison for drugstore products but I adore their body products. Other great product include Brow Archery, Supercat liner and Thick & Fast Mascara

Topshop (available here)
My top pick: Lipsticks
Not strictly drugstore as it’s available only in Topshop stores but a great price point. All the lip products, blushers, bronzers and nail polishes I have tried have been fab but the glow highlighter has to be the best cream affordable one I own.

Would love to hear your drugstore recommendation in the comments, are there any drugstore secrets I am missing?


It’s January. Most of us spent too much on food and presents last month and therefore our bank balances aren’t looking as healthy as usual. It’s also cold and getting colder – I’m seriously starting to miss the sunshine and am patiently waiting for the summer months to get here.

When life gets tough(er) I like to call on all those lipstick quotes, you know ‘lipstick can’t solve all your problems, but it’s a good place to start’; ‘If you’re sad add more lipstick and attack’; or ‘Just put your favourite lipstick on and deal with it.’ Any of these cliche quotes will do. Basically I think lipstick goes a long way to making you feel better and help you deal with life.

If I’m having a really rough day then I always go for a bright red, not only does it portray a certain amount of confidence but it makes me feel that little bit more powerful and able to conquer my day. The drugstore does great affordable red’s. However, theres something extra special and bold about Topshop Rio Rio. As it’s an orange red, it’s a colour I would typically associate with summer, but the hint of blue makes it wearable all year round.

Another great powerful shade, which is a little more appropriate for winter, is Rimmel ‘The Only One Lipstick in Under My Spell.’ It’s a great vampy shade which actually isn’t too scary or dark making it very wearable- I also love the smell, which is a plus!

Then onto nudes, which I simply can’t get enough of recently…

Sleek Matte Me in Birthday suit has been my favourite lip product recently. It’s a matte liquid lipstick in a dusty rose shade, perfect for everyday especially as it last pretty much all day.

If you’re more of a traditional lipstick gal then the L’Oreal Colour Riche lipsticks are amazing! From the bright colours to the nudes, I love them all and there is a colour for everyone. Julianne’s Nude has been my Colour Riche of choice, it’s a great nudey pink which feels really nice on the lips.

If trying a new brand fills you with excitement, as it does for me, then I have been trying out the Color Studio Matt Lipsticks. Asia is a beautiful darker nude, especially for a medium skin tone looking for a MLBB shade, but the whole range has some great colours!


What drugstore lipstick gets you through dark January days?

If I’m looking for a bold lip colour or simply a lip that will last all day then I almost always reach for a lip liner. Liners offer great lip definition, helps avoid any lipstick bleeding as well as prolonging the wear time of a lipstick plus they don’t mean you’ll end up with Kylie Jenner lips!I have a good selection to choose from at the moment but my favourite drugstore ones and some of my most used are the Rimmel Exagerate Lip Liners, particularly in East End Snob.

To celebrate the launch of Rimmel’s new The Only One Lipsticks (more on them another day) they have increased their liner range and added five new liners. Apart from being really affordable at only £3.99 I love that these liners have a fine slanted tip and that their retractable as they’re much easier to carry in your handbag with no need of a sharpener.

I wore Obsession the whole of yesterday (not a new shade) which is perfect deep berry red and I really loved it. They can be a little drying by themselves but I haven’t found a lip liner that isn’t so it’s great topped of with a lipstick or gloss.

They have a great mixture of shades perfect for all year round but going into autumn and winter now I’d recommend checking out; Obsession, Under My Spell, Red Diva and Eastend Snob (great for all year).

Great option for anyone on a budget or if you’re not sure liner is for you and don’t want to invest too much money… or anyone after a good liner.

Before coming away on holiday I noticed that there was a lot of drugstore creeping into my daily routine. 

The most exciting one for me was L’Oreal Elvive Oil-in-cream, which is a new product and leave in oil cream. I like to use oils in my hair but find that as my hair is quite fine it can easily look greasy but I find this really leaves my hair looking hydrated without it looking greasy or weighing it down. L’Oreal Elvive is one of my all time favourite ranges from the drugstore and this is such a great addition to that. I use it in my hair both wet and dry, I can see this quickly becoming a stable in my routine. 

A product that has become a summer stable is the Garnier Oil Beauty Nourishing Lotion; it smells great, has a great pump and leaves skin feeling beautifully hydrated too, perfect for use on holiday or whilst at home to keep skin in good condition. 

After hearing everyone talk about Essie Ballet Slippers Nail polish for years I have finally got my hands on it and I can actually see why it’s so hyped up! Its the perfect almost white pale pink. I love the finish, it applied beautifully and is a really great summer colour! 

A rediscovery is the Avon Super Shock Liners which I forgot about for a while but I always fall in love with just how creamy it is. As it’s quite soft I find it to be really pigmented but I find that it does set quite nicely too. 

The amount of nude lipglosses I have is a little deciduous but I really do love them! My most recent love is the Rimmel Oh My Gloss in the shade Purr… Glossy Cat, it’s perfect. It does have a little shimmer which I usually don’t love but it’s a really easy to wear shade that helps lips look plumper and goes with almost every makeup look.