Monday, 2 January 2017

December favourites

Although we're now bounding into 2017, today I've rounded up my favourites of the last month of 2016 as a way of farewelling the past year. I had a lot more spare time in December so I relished researching, purchasing and trying out some new products; this month's best of list is a mix of some more recent favourites, alongside some rediscovered gems. It's also started to get quite hot in Australia (as I write this, it is currently 41°c outside, help me) and so naturally I've started using a few products that are a bit more appropriate to the current weather. I might do a summer essentials post if you're interested, so do let me know.

My favourite-favourite of the month, without a doubt, is Weleda's Skinfood - a product very much deserving of its cult reputation, in my opinion. To give you some background, I have very sensitive skin on my body and shaving my legs has always been a nightmare - the first two or so days are fine, but after that they become unbearably itchy and I will inevitably scratch them until they bleed (apologies for the oversharing, but I feel it is necessary for you to understand just how much I love this stuff). This would happen regardless of how well or often I exfoliated, and I tried a myriad of creams and serums to help sooth my skin to no avail. I bought Skinfood actually as an intensive moisturiser, not thinking at all of my legs, but something possessed me to try it on my calves and I'm glad I did. It has entirely solved the problem and provided I diligently apply it day and night, my skin no longer itches at all. I highly recommend it to anyone who finds shaving painful or uncomfortable, although it's also a lovely product for dry elbows, knees and hands.

I've tried and loved body products from KORRES before (I mentioned some other favourites earlier this year), but their Fig Body Milk is probably the best I've tried so far. I love the sweet, tart smell of figs - a wholly summery scent in my eyes - and the light yet moisturising formula makes it perfect for hot days when you want something that isn't heavy or cloying, but still provides some hydration. It sinks in quickly and leaves the skin smooth and smelling softly of figs. Divine.

Although I've had it for a few months, I've yet to mention Too Faced's Better Than Sex Mascara - but it really is worth the hype, as they say. It's got a fantastic curvy brush (they say inspired by an old Hollywood bombshell) and it gives very black, defined and thick lashes. It's not the most subtle of eye looks, but it's very prettifying and one that I'm comfortable wearing on a day-to-day basis. By itself it smudges a bit on me, so I always layer some of Blinc's Mascara on the top, which locks in the look and makes it smudgeproof without being a pain to remove.

I've become a bit obsessed with fancy apps - you know the ones that do something wholly unnecessary but are nice to have, with minimalist, achingly cool interfaces - and my most recent favourite is Forest. My friend Peach recommended Forest to me when I mentioned I tend to just delete distracting apps from my phone when I have to be productive, only to then re-download Instagram, Goodreads, etc, once said task is completed - a wholly inefficient system. Forest is an ingenious app whereby you plant a virtual tree and if you don't quit the screen for a chosen amount of time (varying from 10 minutes to two hours), your tree will grow and you'll receive points to purchase different trees. If you're looking for a similar system for your computer (Mac only), SelfControl has gotten me through countless university assignments, and I'm forever grateful to it.

Finally, I've become obsessed with the beauty blender this past month. I've read many people who swear that if you have the original version, you don't need any of the different sizes and shapes, but I'm very glad I bought it - I find it works much better than my full-sized sponge at perfectly blending my undereye products and working concealer around my nose. No matter how much I squeezed up the original into a smaller shape, it is far from being as comfortable or as easy to use as the mini size. Although, of course, if the original works for you for everything, keep on going - but I'm a definite convert.

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