If dreams had a scent…

It’s soooo good in bed… Launched just under a year ago, Feather & Down is a gorgeous range of bath, body and home fragrance products to help you unwind and have a great night’s sleep.

We spend 1/3 of our lives sleeping but today’s busy lifestyles means 35% of people feel their physical and mental wellbeing is affected by not getting enough sleep, and 30-45% of adults suffer from insomnia*.

My anxiety sometimes gets the best of me and that means that, even being a good sleeper in general, sometimes I appreciate the extra help unwinding.

The Pillow Spray is a joy. The fragrance is an amazing infusion of lavender and chamomile essential oils, which are known to help with anxious minds.

It encourages calm, which is essential for a restful night’s sleep. I’ve been using it almost nightly, a couple sprays on my pillow and have to say, on top of feeling very relaxing, it give my bed a comfy, sweet and fresh feel, as if my linen had just been changed. The scent is not lavender heavy.

Now, the Soothing Body Oil. Honestly, I am a huge fan of all sorts of oils in beauty, including body oil.

Full of essential oils, with the same fabulous scent of the Pillow Spray, it sinks beautifully into the skin. Apart from the calming and relaxing fragrance, spraying and smoothing it on skin will soothe it and seal the moisture after showering.

And talking about showering, the Melting Shower Cream shares the scent and mind calming properties of the range. The cream turns into a oil delivering softness and nutrition.

What a trio to reach to after a long week at work – and a great way celebrate World Sleep Day in style.

Bring on the lie-ins!

You can get the Feather & Down Pillow Spray (£7), Soothing Body Oil (£8) and Melting Shower Cream (£6) on the Feather & Down website.

They also have balms, butters and lovely little kits, as well as home fragrances and products are made in England.

written by Dani

*Info from the World Sleep Day website

You know the drill, but I’ll say again: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

My skincare routine for problematic skin – Part 1

Balancing ageing prevention and acne fighting skincare

Once again I go on about my problematic skin. Get used to it. Working with Eucerin has given me a boost of confidence to keep talking openly about skin concerns affecting young and older people alike.

Think double trouble – when you are a little bit older (cough cough) and still suffer from breakouts, ageing is a concern but most acne effective treatments will drain your skin from hydration, promoting a dry, irritated and dull complexion. Which is wrinkle prone. Great.

Frankly, I don’t have time for that, on top of all the aggro acne has brought me, I now have a new set of issues to deal with, and they are the entire opposite end of the spectrum.

With make up not sitting well and not lasting, if your confidence is already knocked by the problematic skin itself, not being able to conceal it a little bit can be even worse.

So what to do Dani? Well, I have, through all these years, tried many combinations. I’m not going to lie: it is trial and error, and sometimes it just stops working, but hopefully my tips will be useful.

In short, I keep acne specific products for the night, adding a shot of deeper hydration, and favour shielding, protecting and moisturising products for the day. And I rotate a lot, depending on how my skin is feeling.

Because this post ended up huge (trust me not to shut up), I am splitting in two parts. Here, I talk about the beginning of the routine – cleansers, toners, serums and day moisturisers.

Cleansers

I double cleanse most days. First either with an oil pre-cleanse – my go-to are dermalogica precleanse cleansing oil or DHC Deep Cleansing Oil or a balm – my faves are this works light time cleanse & glow or Botanicals Hydration Boost Double Action Hydrating Cleanser.

Then I use a wash – always a foaming wash. If skin is a bit more sensitive, I use a mild one like the Evolve Daily Facial Detox Wash or Best Face Forward from Formula 10.0.6.

All of the above are very gentle, offering non-stripping deep cleansing.

If skin if feeling slightly tougher and can take more acid goodness, I love the Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Cleansing foam or the Eucerin Dermopurifyer cleansing gel which are still gentle enough for my (most of the times) sensitive skin.

Toners

For the day, the Zenii Antioxidant Q10 Toner, Murad’s Essential-C Toner and dermalogica’s Multiactive Toner are ever so mild and efficient. At night, I use the Eucerin Dermopurifyer Toner.

If I am looking for something with a bit more bite, Pixi Glow Tonic and Clinique Anti-Blemish Solution Clarifying Toner are my go to (which incidentally need re-stocking!).

Serums

Usually during the day I apply the gorgeous Zenii Antioxidant Power serum and the lovely Lumène Valo Glow Boost Essence both for protection and promoting radiance. I use those mainly for day.

The Rainforest Rescue Blemish Serum, from Evolve organic Beauty, and The Ordinary Niaciamide 10% + Zinc 1% solution are helpful additions when blemishes are present, and usually at night.

Day moisturisers

I am a bit promiscuous when it comes to moisturising. At the moment, I have, on rotation, for the day: this works light time skin plumper, Zenii Moisturising Sun protection, Nivea Q10plus C, Neutrogena Moisture Boost and Perricone MD Photo Plasma (which makes a great makeup base).

If the SPF on the moisturiser is not enough, I complement the routine with one of my favourite sun creams, such as Eucerin’s Sun Fluid Anti-Age.

Very important: this mini series talks about a maintenance routine. If you are suffering from (especially) moderate to severe active acne, I urge you to talk to your doctor to discuss treatment.

Once you start treatment, you will most likely stick to a prescribed skincare routine, but depending on what your main medical treatment for acne is, some products will be off the table.

In a few days, I will be talking excitingly about night hydration, oils, masks, scrubs and other skincare bits that are also part of my routine – do not miss!

P.S. Since I photographed this post, new skincare came into play, like the new Nivea City Skin range, which has gone straight into my skincare drawer… But you know what they say (do they?): the work of a beauty blogger is never done – they will soon be featuring.

written by Dani

You know the drill, but I’ll say again: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

#GoodToBeBad

In my life, I had many fragrances. I dropped fragrances I loved but reminded of heartbreaks and (maybe) excessive nights out. I impulse bought. I re-purchased. I had “signature scents”. I was faithful, then promiscuous with my perfume choices.

However, I never found a scent that seemed to be “built for me” in so many levels: the bottle, alluring to my love of shoes, the strapline, once attributed to me by a rapid burning flame, the notes that talk my heart. The good girl I claim to be, but well…

Good Girl, from Carolina Herrera is a delight. I mean, look at that killer stiletto bottle. Sensuous and dark.

Admission: I wanted not to like this perfume as I wasn’t looking for a new one. However, as every good torrid love affair, I ended up falling head over heels.

The strong base of toasted tonka beans, cacao, vanilla and coffee (the “bad” side) settle the sweet flowery tuberose, jasmine sambac and iris heart (the “good side”), which also contains some sandalwood and the top note is almond.

As every woman, Good Girl is multifaceted. It’s strong and delicate. Explosive and elegant, playful but determined. I could go on forever, but you get it.

I cannot say enough how vanilla, tonka, chocolate, jasmine and iris make the perfect scent for me, in any combo.

Jasmine holds beautiful childhood memories of when my dad took me for walks in the evening and the jasmine flowers’ scent permeated the warm nights in Brazil. This concoction just hits the spot for me.

Now… the strapline: “It’s so good to be bad“. I had ONE date with someone I spoke to an awful lot prior and after that date. We spoke a lot with hashtags (judge me, go on).

#GoodToBeBad was “me”. Always followed by a comment “but it’s so good to be bad”. It makes me laugh, but in a way it kinda gives a bit of my personality away.

As I am all heart-eyed emoji, I thought I’d get topical on National Fragrance Week (5-11 March) and express my love to my brand new squeeze!

I got mine (50ml) from Indulge Beauty, but it is widely available from Boots, Superdrug, Debenhams… name it, you can find everywhere online and in-store from £49 (30ml) to £96 (80ml).

written by Dani

Yes, I bought this one. It’s a labour of love. 

So Many Lovely Things, GDPR and privacy policy

First of all, thank you for being with So Many Lovely Things.

Today you are receiving something a bit different – it’s not about beauty, style, or lifestyle, but very important as it is to do with your personal data.

You might have heard about GDPR, which means the European regulations around personal data is changing, and that means that ultimately, you will have more control over YOUR data.

So Many Lovely Things know how lucky we are to have you around and we respect you and your information. Please find our updated privacy policy, so you know exactly what data we collect and what we do with your data (hint – not a lot, mainly keep it to send you the latest goss!).

If you still want to hear from us at So Many Lovely Things (and get all the pretty things on your inbox from time to time), you don’t need to do anything. You will keep receiving everything we post on the blog as usual.

Of course we don’t want to see you go but if you wish to unsubscribe, please use the link at the footer of this email to do so.

Feel free to email us at dani@somanylovelythings.com if you have any questions, or just want to talk beauty!

Stay gorgeous!

written by Dani

Super blow dry

Easy drying and styling? In pink? Tell Mark Hill I am in!

The gorgeous Mark Hill Perfect Blow Dry kit has a gorgeous hot pink 2200W motor hair dryer with a quick cool button to set that glossier finish so it lasts longer. The hair dryer is powerful, quiet ad comfortable to use.

I personally love a nozzle when styling, but everyday quick drying, I tend not to use.

In the box, you get a radial brush, which is pretty in orange and hot pink ombré and helps add add volume and body as it allows for even air-flow, helping reduce dry time!

Also included in the kit is a full size Styling Heat Protection spray. It protects hair against styling heat up to 240 degrees, helping hold the style and leaving hair shinier and smoother. It feels a bit like hair spray but hair is set naturally.

I also got the lovely Mini handbag Heroes containing a mini versions of the Plumping Powder (7g), which helps give volume and texture, the Taming Anti Humidity Spray (50ml), great for keeping fly aways at bay and the Freeze Hold Hairspray (50ml), which is lightweight with strong hold.

On top of products, you get 2 sectioning clips to really style with precision.

Altogether, I feel I have the perfect blow dry arsenal to style – and keep – my hair beautifully.

Mark Hill Perfect blow dry kit reviewThe Mark Hill Perfect Blow Dry kit costs £29.99, which I find great for value for its contents. You can get it from the Mark Hill website and Boots.

And the Mini Handbag Heroes cost £12.99 and was part of the Christmas collection – so handy and you can still get it from their website!

written by Dani

You know the drill, but I’ll say again: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Indulge on beauty!

Beauty. Heaven. There is no other way to describe the haven that is Indulge Beauty at Westfield Stratford.

Think makeup, nails, fragrance skin, hair and body care for men and women from over 120 cult, classic and emerging brands under on roof. For all tastes, all budgets.

I was really impressed with the quality and selection of the brands present. Being a beauty blogger, obviously I knew many, but there was a lot still to discover.

Also, the dedicated male beauty area caught my eyes – a comprehensive and approachable offer even for the shyer men starting to get into skincare and grooming.

And their fine fragrance section? To die for. Got me all in love with Eight & Bob (the Original) and I shall get my claws on it at some point.

I left the shop with a gorgeous Capsule box, which only lightly touches on the breadth of the beauty offering from Indulge; from well know Urban Decay, Glam Glow and Beauty Blender, to cult Skin Laundry and classic Clarins and GHD; this just a tiny sample of what you can expect from a place which seems to have it all.

The idea behind Indulge Beauty makes me even fonder of it: a place where the real YOU is celebrated, with their mantra: Be bold, Be brave. Be you.

The best thing? At Indulge Beauty you can get a routine tailored for you – think a shampoo from one brand, conditioner from other, mask from a third; eyeliner from brand A, mascara from B; day cream from brand X, day cream from Y… you get the idea.

Most importantly, advice is neutral, focused on your needs and you can get all in one place!

What better than killer beauty to highlight that bolder and braver you?

From the guys behind The Fragrance Shop, Indulge Beauty is located at Westfield Stratford (Unit 20, The Arcade, Montfichet Road, E20 1EH), in London (soooo close to me, how lucky am I?).

I also popped in (I do all the time) yesterday and was received with friendly, but not obtrusive or pushy smiles, great advice and fun chat (I talk too much so I always initiate).

You can also shop online at indulgebeauty.com, as well as read a bit more about them and what beauty revolution they are plotting!

written by Dani

You know the drill, but I’ll say again: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

 

Dani’s Little Book of Fashion: stripes incoming!

It’s been so long since I actually published a style post, but I am hoping to get back into it. What better way of getting back into it than this little gem, shot in the beautiful Spencer House over London Fashion Week?

If you haven’t noticed (I am sure you have), stripes are going to be everywhere for spring/summer. It suits me fine as for me, they are always welcome. However, even though I like trends, I will only adopt what I like, twisting and tweaking to make them suit my personal style.

This is a super budget outfit that turned out to be quite fun, quirky and cute, which is just the kind of style I love!

This New Look cropped red wool jumper, currently on sale for £6 (a bargain!), comes in 7 colours and also looks amazing layered.

The sac, tie waist trousers, also from New Look, has a great fit for its shape and it seems to come quite large – this is a size 6, while I am usually a 10 for trousers. It costs a reasonable £19.99 and I feel it will be a staple on my spring wardrobe.

Boots are from H&M – another great bargain at £29.99, and the cute hearts from IPHORIA on the laces add extra cuteness to the ensemble and break up the rough edge of the boots.

And I was wearing my favourite clutches ever: Lulu Guiness lips, this time in black, which was the first one I got.

A couple of years ago I started building a solid handbag and shoe base. Since then, I haven’t wasted money on high volumes of cheaper shoes and bags.

I currently have 4 lips, in black, gold, red glitter and nude, to cover most outfits!

Finally, to top it off, you know I like making stuff, eh? I made this cute hair piece with a little gem encrusted whale keyring, also from New Look at £4.99 (now on sale for 2.99). I cut the keyring bit and added a little bow to the loop at the top of the happy whale’s head.

I then scrunched some net I had home, to channel a bit of SS18 Chanel, and all was duly hot glued onto half a fascinator hair comb. Suddenly my side ponytail is a load more fun just by sticking the hair piece to the base of it.

Makeup was simple: a long feline flick, a little bit of nude matte eyeshadow on the crease, and 3/4 lashes, a good measure of highlighter and a killer red – he almost electric Charlotte Tilbury Tell Laura on my lips!

You all know I love a monochrome with a splash of bright, so no wonder I like this outfit so much. I am very excited to have FINALLY posted a style piece – and that is comes ahead of the new season!

What are you looking forward to wearing when the weather is warmer?

And huge thank to Kat for shooting me pretty. Check her out on Insta!

written by Dani

A vitamin C boost to tackle dull skin

Valo [Light] Glow Boost EssenceWho’s with me in no longer bearing the winter? Thought so. I had enough. London is so miserable in the winter so I cannot wait for those longer, brighter days.

While those don’t come, my skin keeps suffering with the brutal wind and heating. Dullness ensues.

A while back, at my favourite place, Liberty, I came across Lumene, a gorgeous Finnish brand and its equally gorgeous Valo [Light] Glow Boost Essence.

Now, we all love a bit of glow and we know highlighter can only do so much. I only “discovered” some glow in my skin in the last few years, so I am doing everything I can to retain even if a tiny bit of it.

Valo [Light] Glow Boost Essence

This light serum is loaded with vitamin C and hyaluronic acid, which makes it the perfect hydration and glow potion to fight the winter effects on the skin.

Its consistency very fluid, colourless and feels so smooth on the skin, which drinks up very quickly. I use about 3-5 drops for my face and it is suitable for all skin types.

I do feel it helps reset my complexion, especially when used at night. It also helps maintain the plumpness and hydration which my skin tends to lose in the course of the day, when I apply in the morning.

Valo [Light] Glow Boost Essence

Apart from brightening vitamin C and moisture preserving hyaluronic acid, The Valo Glow Boost Essence contains Arctic cloudberry extract a and pure Arctic spring water.

Altogether, they works to help achieve plumper, smoother and more radiant skin, which subsequently appears more youthful.

I use it mainly at night, at times combined with other serums and oils and at times with some other vitamin C products on top. I sometimes add it in the morning too, with some more vitamin C products on top, because you know, bitch gotta glow.

You can get this the Lumene Valo [Light] Glow Boost Essence from Liberty (always worth a trip over). It costs £29.90 for 30ml and you can also get it from feelunique.

written by Dani

You know the drill, but I’ll say again: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

Flawless cover for problem skin

Covermatte Compact Powder Foundation 12h A good coverage is very important to me when settling for a face makeup product. At the same time, caring for my problematic skin is also a concern.

The Vichy Dermablend has quite a feel solutions to tackle both problems with one smooth sweep. The Vichy Dermablend Covermatte Compact Powder Foundation 12h is not different from the Vichy Dermablend 3D Correction, which I tried before – it also does not disappoint in terms of coverage. Even though it’s super buildable, it does not look cakey.

Covermatte Compact Powder Foundation 12h The power powder

The powder comes in a little compact with mirror and a handy sponge for application, which is great on the go.

The texture is velvety and the finish matte but fresh, and not a lot of product is needed to achieve a really good coverage – trust me when I say it, I rarely settle for sheer.

Covermatte Compact Powder Foundation 12h Is it just make up?

No way! It is non-comedogenic, paraben free, hypoallergenic and 100% mineral pigment. Its non-greasy, oil control and shine-fighting formula contains active dermatological ingredients including sebum-regulating zinc gluconate and anti-imperfection salicylic acid and vitamin E.

I know some will shoot me for saying this, but for me, it makes for the perfect coverage for the gym because the durability is so good – up to 12h.

It also took me through my post-laser treatment, where I could (and needed, not to scare the passers-by) wear very light makeup. The fact very little is needed to achieve good coverage made it ideal that situation.

The Vichy Dermablend Covermatte Compact Powder Foundation 12h, as well as the other Vicky Dermablend products, is available from retailers nationwide, comes in 5 shades and costs £20.

You know the drill, but I’ll say again: this post contains PR samples. This review, however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.

written by Dani

It’s always all about the red lipstick

I have a (real) thing for blacks, flirt with the purples, dab with the blues and on occasion succumb to a nude, but my lips truly belong to the reds.

There’s not a single other thing that can make me feel like myself and can pick me up when I am down (ok, maybe shoes. Or vodka).

Between blues and oranges, I lean towards the warmer as they suit me better but I feel quite lucky my olive complexion can the cooler reds rather well.

Life wasn’t always like this: I only started using red lipsticks around 12 years ago; bought an inexpensive Sleek number at Superdrug (in Clapham Junction) for fancy dress. Never looked back.

And with Valentine’s around the corner, you may want to invest on a new fiery red.

So I decided to wade through my vast collection of reds and do the most impossible: pick my best 10. Funnily enough, 5 are orange based, 1 is pretty neutral and 4 are blue-ish.

The warmer

No warm is too warm. I actually have a great selection of orange-red lipsticks I actively wear. However, the order of the day is red and I simply cannot rank them, so alphabetical order it will be…

The gorgeous Chanel Rouge Allure Velvet in Rouge Feu is stunning; bright with an amazing texture that spreads well with a velvet finish. And lasts soooo well.

Two Charlotte Tilbury feature here: Tell Laura and Love Bite. Both warm and with a great formula, Tell Laura is matte and sharp, which Love Bite has a sheen to it and is less in your face.

GOSH My Valentine lip crayon has some glittery shimmer and is a lovely bright red that is practical to apply.

Finally, a lipstick that has been with me forever: MAC Lady Danger, a fierce red. Super matte, it has a harder formula with great durability.

The cooler

Charlotte Tilbury comes in again with the classic So Marilyn. A great formula, creamy with fantastic finish.

Of course, my gorgeous Christian Louboutin Beauté lipstick in Louboutin Red has to be here. So pretty, with a formula so dreamy I can’t even describe. It is creamy and velvety but settles into a beautiful matte. Durability is exceptional.

GOSH Velvet Touch matter in Classic Red is a true red – not warm, not cool, so a bit out of place in the cooler section, as it’s just in the middle. It has a harder formula, with good durability and amazing value for money.

MAC attacks again, with another shade that has been with me for a long time: Russian Red. A true matte with a hard formula (especially in the winter), it well and truly sticks to the lips.

Walk of Fame, part of Sleek‘s Lip VIP range, is described as a semi-matte. It has the pigmented finish but a smoother, slightly shinier finish.

The extra bits

A while back, I wrote a post on applying red lipstick, and I still follow that “ritual”. It is a life saver, especially in the winter. I also cannot live without a good lip liner and have a few in my collection, on rotation.

What I feel changed the way I apply lipstick is the retractable lip brush. Perfect for your bag, it is small and the fact it’s retractable means there is no mess! The MAC 318 is my go to.

What is YOUR red?written by Dani

You know the drill, but I’ll say again: this post contains a mix of PR samples and purchases. This post however, is based on my experience with the product and reflects my honest opinion on them.