Packing for a weekend away

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I’m off to London for the weekend to meet up with the boyfriend and some friends for a bit of an adventure! This means a short hop with Easyjet and their joyful baggage restrictions… So I thought I’d show you my carry-on bag and it’s contents.

As you all know, cabin liquid limits are 10 items, 100ml or less, in a clear plastic bag. I have no idea how some bloggers spent the summer promoting plastic bags with designs on, I’m sure I’ve seen them be binned at airports… Either way, my bag is a John Frieda one that came with a mini shampoo, conditioner, and hairspray. They’re long gone now, but the bag lives on! It’s sturdy enough to survive the dozen or so flights a year that I do at the moment.

These are my ten items… (I took the pictures and then changed my mind slightly, sorry! The Clarins toner is staying home and my Collection concealer and LOreal foundation are going in its place.)

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From left to right: toothpaste, contact lens solution & case, Original Source mint shower gel (decanted), Rituals shampoo & conditioner (taken from the last hotel I stayed in!), Garnier Moisture Match, Clarins Daily Energising Cleanser, and LOreal micellar solution (decanted).

Seeing as I’m only away for two nights, I’ve tried to limit the size of each item, but I’ve done a week on cabin size stuff quite easily before. The easiest and cheapest way to do this is to decant what you have, rather than buying travel size bottles of each product. Boots sell 50ml and 100ml bottles for just over £1 each, in a variety of screw cap/ squeezy/ spray types. I’m using a spray bottle for micellar solution and, if I didn’t have hotel miniatures, my shampoo and conditioner would be in 50ml screw cap bottles. I usually add coloured washi tape to each bottle so I don’t get them muddled up.

I have cheated slightly on the 10 items restriction; there’s perfume at my boyfriend’s house that I can pick up on the way from the airport to our little holiday place, but if I didn’t have that option I’d go for a dry perfume stick like this.

I always see loads of people try to put their entire make up collection in the toiletries bag, but it really is just liquids – my test is that if I can tip the open container upside down and nothing oozes out, it’s not a liquid, so mascara and lip balm are both going in my handbag. I’m not certain that airport security agrees with me, but they’ve not challenged it yet!

What do you take away with you for short trips? Any tips for packing super light?

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Garnier Body Tonic || Review

Remember when I reviewed Body Shop Mango Scrub? And the Soap & Glory Flake Away? I said I had the ultimate in scrubs… And here it is!

Garnier BodyTonic Sugar Scrub and Lotion

Garnier Body Tonic Scrub is a sugar-based scrub with a really fresh lemon scent. And it’s a massive vote for tube over tub! Perfect for a shower scrub, as there’s no water leaking into your product and making it all runny.

It’s designed to be used a few times a week to remove dead skin cells (icky!) so you get softer skin. The granules are pretty rough, so I’m cool with not using this every day, and it really does leave nice smooth skin behind – not the scratched feel that you might expect from a tough scrub.

Did I mention the lemons? It’s so citrusy! I love that smell. Great way to wake up in the morning!

And you can make it last even longer (the scent and the smoothness) – Garnier have also got a lotion in the Body Tonic range. It’s supposed to be hydrating and firming. I suppose the first point I have to make is that the bottle makes me feel a little bit ripped off – it’s a 250ml bottle masquerading as something bigger because it’s tall and wide, but super slim! Though it’s still only around a fiver, so I can’t really complain.

As for the ‘firming’ claim – it contains seaweed extract and caffeine, which after a few weeks of regular use are supposed to tighten up your skin (it’s definitely not for your face!!). I can’t say I’ve really noticed much of an effect, though I did give it the superhuman challenge of tackling my thighs… But my skin generally feels silkier where I’ve been using the Body Tonic lotion.

It’s a very refreshing lotion to use; not the almost gel formula means it’s absorbed really quickly without any greasy bits.

I’m loving the packaging too – a really vibrant yellow really brightens up my bathroom! Oh, and the scrub is actually yellow too.
Have you tried either of the Garnier BodyTonic products? What did you think?

Garnier BB creams: Ultimate summer makeup!

In this heat, foundation is way too much makeup for me to wear. It feels thick and heavy, and it melts off anyway. So I switched to BB creams – my first foray into this! In an interesting twist, I bought the Garnier Miracle Skin Perfector BB cream for combination/oily skin at the same time as my sibling bought the Garnier Miracle Skin Perfector Original BB cream, so this seems like a great opportunity to show both of these products together.

The MSP for combination to oily skin (which I’ll refer to as the “matte” version throughout this review) claims to give you immediately perfected skin, with anti-shine, blurred pores and imperfections, even tone and boosts glow, moisturises, and gives SPF20 protection.

The MSP Original claims to even tone and boost glow, blur imperfections, smooth fine lines, give 24hr hydration, and SPF 15 UV protection.

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L: Garnier BB cream Original, R: The mattifying version

The first thing you’ll notice is that, despite being the same price, the matte one for combo skin is a smaller tube (40ml compared to 50ml), so less product for your money. That said, the skinnier tube is so much easier to fit into my makeup bag for on-the-go touch ups!

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L: mattifying BB, R: standard BB

Note that in the picture above the creams are the opposite way round to the previous pic!

The formulation is totally different – the original BB cream is quite thick, whereas the matte version is a lot more liquidy. This doesn’t seem to make too much difference in application though, they both blend in really well. The matte version just spreads a little further across your face due to being thinner. The difference in formulation probably explains the different tubes – if you squeezed matte BB cream out of the thicker tube with wider opening in the cap then you’d be covered in it instantly! The coverage of both is a perfect balance between concealing and letting your features show through – in summer I don’t want to hide those freckles! The matte version has more of a concealing effect, and I look more like I’m wearing makeup, if that makes sense? Like the original version is very good at the “my face, but better” concept, it looks really natural. Staying power is also amazing with both – the heat is so much that I fully expect to have sweated off most of my makeup  by the end of the day, but these creams are still clinging on!

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L: matte, R: original

You can see in the pic above what I mean about the matte version going further. And look at the colour! These are both the “Light” colour, but the matt version comes up a few shades paler – I had to wait til I had a touch of tan on my face before the original one looked ok on me. If you’re superpale, the original BB cream will probably come up too dark for you. There’s a slight hint of the colour difference when you look at the tubes they come in, as the matte is noticeably lighter, but given that they come in boxes you can’t tell this until you’ve got it home!

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L: matte, R: original

Here I’ve blended them out a bit under each swatch. My arms are ghostly pale so both of these come up a little too visible, but I promise that on my face they come out looking perfectly normal! The matte version really does do what it says on the tin – my face has no hint of shine (though in this heat, I’ll admit that doesn’t last too long!) and it gives a really good base to set the rest of your makeup. The original version I actually prefer – you get a bit of a glow and a touch of shine along the cheekbones, nose etc just give a bit more of a summery feel! The one downside to it is that it can feel a touch sticky (I think this is due to the thicker formulation) and trying to put a powder blush on top just leaves powder where the brush first hits your face and no further. I think a cream blush would probably blend beautifully over it though.

So, do they match up to their claims of instantly perfected skin? I found that the original version did a better job of disgusing my pores, gave a better glow and felt more moisturising, but the matte version beat it for evening out tone and hiding imperfections. And in the midst of summer, I’m always a bit swung by the promise of a higher SPF – the only glitch to this is that I’m now so used to my BB cream providing sun protection that on my make-up free day I totally forgot to compensate with suncream and had a bit of a red nose and cheeks for a day! Oops!

I’ve not tried the rest of the Garnier BB cream range (there’s one for sensitive skin, an anti-aging version, and an eye cream) but I’m loving both of the two I’ve tried. They’ve both got major plus points, and I can’t pick a definite winner between them, so go for the one that best meets your requirements – matte for its anti-shine and good coverage, original for a great glow!

What do you think to the Garnier BB cream range? Would you agree that it’s the ultimate summer makeup product?