25 April 2017

My Favourite Mintd Box To Date... The Upkeep

Our skin is constantly changing...

Do you ever feel as though your skin has a mind of it's own?! Sometimes mine can feel really dry and  dehydrated, sometimes I get terrible breakouts and other days I can look at my skin and think 'yep, it's looking pretty good!' (these days are usually followed up with a horrendous spot appearing out of nowhere - anyone else feel like they jinx themselves when you even think that your skin is looking good!?!)

The fact of the matter is, our skin is constantly changing and sometimes we need to use products that will assist with these changes.  Mintd Box have put together a perfect selection of products to help with the upkeep of your ever changing skin....and it's my favourite box to date! 

APA - Lip Loofah

Full Size (Worth £16 from www.netaporter.com)

I'm a twice a day, morning and evening lip balm addict but even so, sometimes my lips can get a little dry and flaky from time to time due to heating or air conditioning.  I tried this and instantly loved it, it smells divine and leaves your lips really smooth and moisturised and I probably shouldn't say this but it tastes as good as it smells too! I'm including this lip scrub in my routine whenever my lips need a bit of TLC! 

Rosalena - Beauty & The Beast Face Oil

Full Size (Worth £42 from www.rosalena.co.uk)

Fun fact....I used to be terrified of using oils on my face as part of my skincare routine....now I can't do without them, although I do tend to favour using them in the evening as opposed to before my makeup routine in the morning.  In this case though, for the process of testing I thought I'd try this out   in the morning and the evening and I'm pleased to say that it's such a quickly absorbed oil that it sits fine on the face underneath make up and doesn't leave a horrible greasy residue like some oils do.  Full of antioxidants this oil leaves my skin really hydrated and plump and I love the iridescent bottle!

Sunday Riley - Martian Mattifying Melting Water Gel Toner

Deluxe Size (£18.46 full size is £48 from www.spacenk.com)

My skin definitely sits in the 'combination and acne-prone' category, in fact I think I had less breakouts when I was in my teens! On reading the description of this product I immediately knew I was going to like it.  It seemed to answer all my skincare problems i.e. it mattifies, reduces pore size, soothes, reduces signs of redness and calms the skin.  It also has antibacterial properties to balance oily and problem skin conditions.  I've been using it just in the morning after cleansing and before moisturiser and I'm really enjoying the results. It's a green gel type liquid that sort of melts into the skin on contact. The smell is quite strong but not unpleasant and smells fresh.  I'm a big fan! 

Skyn Iceland - Brightening Eye Serum

Full Size (£30 from www.marksandspencer.com)

My under-eye area concerns me and this is because it's one of the first places to show the signs of ageing.  I've been wearing an eye cream since my early twenties and really do feel it's an area worth investing.  It's also the area of the face which suffers the most if I'm tired or unwell.  

Skyn are a brand that I've tried quite a few products from and I've been super impressed every time and although I've only been using this Serum for a couple of weeks, I'm already starting to see some small effects and I expect, with prolonged use this will improve further.  I feel like my under eye area is smoother and and feels slightly firmer.   Another winner from skyn!

Potion London - The Beauty Formula

Full Size (Worth £25 from www.harveynichols.com) 

Here's another interesting fact for you.  I've been taking hair, skin and nail supplements for well over a year now and I strongly believe they make a difference.  My hair seems to grow faster and thicker, my nails also grow a lot faster and my skin, although still a little problematic seems to get less breakouts and looks smoother.  So when I noticed that there was a new brand of supplement to try in this month's box I was really pleased.  

In addition to the usual benefits of a beauty supplement I've also noticed that this one can help prevent acne and can control skin disorders such as eczema and I do suffer from this when I'm feeling stressed! 

It's too early to really notice the effects of using this particular brand however I've been doing a bit of research online and this is brand a lot of people rave about!  

So those of you who are perhaps not familiar with Mintd Box they are a relatively new beauty subscription box with a but of a difference to the usual 'same old same old' beauty boxes .  They off only  premium brand products stocked in high-end retailers such as Net-a-porter, Harvey Nichols and Space NK and the products are predominately full size so you're getting a great deal (the face oil alone in this months box is worth £42!!) 

The best part about the Mintd Box is the money saving to be made.  For example, this month's box is worth £131 and you can get it for just £65 (with additional 10% off if you use the code WELCOME17) It ships to the UK, W. Europe, North America and Australia)



16 April 2017

The Secret Is Out....Niod Photography Fluid Tan Opacity 8%

"....I can credit my 'glowy' skin to this entirely!"

So many of you have asked in the last few weeks what I'm doing different with my skin and why it all of a sudden looks so 'glowy' and radiant? Now I have been exercising a lot more, limiting the alcohol and upping my water intake however I don't think this has effected the skin on my face a great deal (put it this way, it still looks perpetually grey and dull when I wake up in the morning!!). 

But..... there has been a new product I've been testing over the last few weeks and I can credit my glowy skin to this entirely!

It's the Niod Photography Fluid Tan Opacity 8%  and I'm about to make a bold statement here (and also save you about £40!!) Its better than the By Terry CC Serum that the whole world is raving about.  There, I've said it and now let me tell you why it's better.....

Well putting the very blatant money saving aspect aside I actually prefer this product for a number of reasons, despite the fact that the dropper is a tad annoying! I can live with that though! :)

"Adds a subtle tan and glow to the face and doesn't look at all orange..."

It's a serum textured product that works in very much the same way as the original Photography Fluid (so that's blurring out imperfections, balancing light absorption effects, gives you radiance in real life and in photos....you know, that sort of shiz!)

This new 'tan' version also contains a naturally based caramel tone that adds a subtle tan and glow to the face and doesn't look at all orange (unlike the ByTerry that does have a tendency to leave a bit of an orange hue sometimes if you're a bit pale) 

Due to the consistency and the colour, I would imagine that this would work well for all skin tones and it contains a hue corrector that gets rid of any yellow or redness. 

"...gets rid of any yellow or redness"

A few other things worth mentioning are that it's oil free for those of you worried about it causing an oil slick on your face! Fear not! and something I'm becoming more increasingly conscious of is the fact it's also vegan and cruelty free :)

Another major plus point it has over the ByTerry CC Serum is that it's scent-free..... the ByTerry one smells dis-gust-ing!!!!!!!

How do I use it?

I pop a drop on my forehead, each cheek and chin and then use a dense brush to buff it into my skin.  If I'm just popping to the gym or going out to walk the dog, I'll just leave it at that or if I'm doing a full face of make up I'll then go in with concealer under my eyes perhaps a little around my t-zone and set with a bit of bareMinerals barePro powder foundation.  I then go in with bronzer, blush and the rest of my make up.   This gives a nice natural radiant look and I'm really enjoying letting my skin breathe at the moment.  The Niod Photography Fluid Tan really helps to even out skin tone without the need for a heavy liquid foundation. 

You could also mix it with the original Photography Fluid, something I've not tried yet but definitely will when we get to those hot Summer days where I just want to  G L O W!!

Or it can be mixed into a liquid foundation if you're still looking for that gorgeous glow with a bit more of your usual coverage.  I think this would work really well and I'm definitely going to try this on a bad skin day (and I've probably cursed myself into one of those by writing this!!!) 

So there we have it, the secret's out! Let me know if you purchase a bottle and what you think!

Thank you for reading x

Shop the post...


2 April 2017

What I Got Up To And Wore In Dubai

".....a fleeting trip to Dubai"

Recently I made a fleeting trip to Dubai (umm, like I needed an excuse!) to spend a few days with the lovely Stacey (www.expatmakeupaddict.com) celebrating her Birthday....and celebrate we certainly did!

So many of you have asked for one of my usual 'holiday' blogposts about this trip but in all honesty it just basically involved a lot of dressing up, a lot of eating and many glasses of prosecco!  So this will be a kind of what I wore and where I went style mish-mash of a post (in other words all my random pictures with a bit of an explanation!!) I hope you enjoy!


I arrived in Dubai on Thursday evening at a ridiculous time of night (my plane was delayed!) however my mood was lifted when both Stacey and Kirsty (www.lifeinexcess.com) were there to meet me and drive me back to Stacey's pad!


After a good night's sleep we all got dressed up and went to the Brunch the following day at The Westin Hotel.

If you're not familiar with Dubai, their weekend falls on Friday and Saturday and on the Friday a lot of the restaurants and hotels will serve a 'Brunch' which is essentially a huge feast with lots of alcohol being served.  An all day eating and drinking fest - depending how much stamina you have!!!

"The Westin's 'Bubblicious' Brunch"

The Westin's 'Bubblicious' Brunch is no exception to this and actually one of the largest brunches I've ever been to in Dubai - I've never seen so much choice of food and the bubbly was flowing! It was also lovely to meet with Froozi at last! (www.a-zlifeandstyle.com)

Brunch Outfit 

Dress - Missguided - Get it HERE

Watch - Rolex Datejust 

Bag - Chanel Classic Flap 

Shoes - Christian Louboutin Pigalle 100 in Nude

Sunglasses - Celine 'New Audrey' in Tortoiseshell

Necklace - Lucinda King Lock Necklace - get it HERE 


After brunch, we took a few photos then went back to Stacey's to relax for a bit before heading out.  Relaxing consisted of sitting in our pyjamas and chatting whilst watching 'Sex In The City' and drinking copious amounts of Veuve Clicquot Champagne! 

A quick outfit change and we headed back out for the evening! 

First port of call was 'La Cantine Du Faubourg'...an uber cool bar at the Emirates Towers Hotel.  This is a place that oozes class, had great cocktails and played my kind of music.  Okay, a little borderline pretentious but I'm not someone who has a problem with that, in fact, I'm not ashamed to say I enjoy it! I'm all about a good balance of class and fun! Start off in a few classy places and end somewhere fun is always my mantra for a good night out! 

Which brings me to our next venue of the evening..... Societe - this was such a good club and great for letting your hair down and having a good dance!! Cheesy pop, 80's, 90's every time the DJ played a new track it was a trip down memory lane!  I loved it here! So much so that I think we stayed until around 3am and then went and got chips before heading home! Classy ladies! 


"Stacey's Birthday Afternoon Tea..."

With surprisingly clear heads we managed to get up the following day and get dolled up for Stacey's Birthday Afternoon Tea at The Palace 

I'd only been here for drinks before in the past and consequently very excited at the prospect of being able to stuff my (hungover) face at a buffet-style afternoon tea in a fabulous hotel!! 

....and my word it did not disappoint!

Afternoon Tea Outfit

Dress - Closet London - get it HERE

Bag - borrowed from Stacey - but it's Valentino!

Shoes - Valentino Rockstud heels 

Sunglasses - Celine 'New Audrey' in Tortoiseshell


After going back to Stacey's and chilling out for a bit we headed to Dubai Mall for a quick look around and then for a 'casual' (ahem!) dinner at Robertos in DIFC (Similar to London's Canary Wharf) 

"Exquisite food and views of the Burj Khalifa..."

I didn't take any photos here because it was quite dark but let's just say there was nothing 'casual' about this restaurant with it's exquisite food and views of the Burj Khalifa!!!  I can highly recommend it and I know it's one of Stacey's favourites too! 


On Sunday Stacey had to go back to work and consquently I had the day to myself.  In the morning I did a spot of sunbathing by the pool and then headed across to Mall Of The Emirates and returned with.....nothing!!  However, I did have a fantastic lunch at Common Grounds.  I've been a few times now and it never fails to disappoint, great coffee too! :)


Which brings me to my last night! :(  

"Marina Social is a firm favourite of mine..."

So being the last evening, it required a special restaurant.  Marina Social is a firm favourite of mine having visited when it first opened a while back.  Stacey and I both agreed prior to me even getting on a plane that this is where we were going to go for dinner! 

The food is to die for and the views over the Marina are sensational.  If you are ever visiting Dubai this place is a MUST. It's located in the Intercontinental Hotel (also very good, I've stayed here previously).


So that's it, another trip to Dubai over! It already seems like months ago and it was only a couple of weeks, but as usual, I'm already planning my return visit! The question is....can I handle the Summer heat???!!! 

As always, thank you for reading and feel free to ask me any questions! 

Lis x 


12 March 2017

Time to 'Spring Clean' with Mintd Box

"I'm SO over Winter now..."

I am one of those people who gets excited for the change in seasons.  I'm so over Winter now and the novelty of wearing boots and thick knits has definitely worn off! Give me crisp white shirts, distressed denim and pointy flats now!  I'm excited for warmer weather, updating my Spring / Summer wardrobe and switching up my make-up routine. Who's with me? :)

A change in climate also means a need to adjust your skincare routine.  Increased humidity means our skin needs to adapt. We need to brighten, exfoliate and hydrate our dehydrated and dull Winter skin in preparation for the sunnier days ahead!

This month's Mintd Box is dedicated to this cause with the theme 'Spring Clean' and once again, the lovely people at Mintd Box have not disappointed with their selection of products.  (sidenote - the mud mask is a game changer....read on for more details!)

Oilixia Australian Kakadu Plum Gummy Facial Cleanser
Full Size (Worth £24 at www.oilixiaskincare.com)

Well that's a mouthful to say isn't it?! 

I had no idea what to expect from this but I do love trying new cleansers, so this was the first product in the box to hit the bathroom!  I've been using this as my morning cleanser (I prefer something more oil based in the evening to remove makeup) for over a week now and I'm really enjoying it.  It's a fairly 'gummy' texture (doh!) and it's quite satisfying to massage it into the skin and kind of press and lift the product off the face to create 'suction' on the skin.  You then add a little water at the end to emulsify the product and it leaves a nice nourishing layer of goodness behind.  After rinsing, my skin does actually feel a lot smoother.  I'd really recommend this stuff!

Patchology Smartmud Masques 

Travel Size (Worth £24 from www.patchology.com) 

Definitely the stand-out product from box.  I do like a sheet mask but find a lot of them not very effective and a bit blahhh if I'm honest.  I do really enjoy putting on a mud mask but often the removal is laborious because the mud dries and is difficult to get off your face, it's also messy which drives me insane.  The Smartmud Masques are the perfect solution to these problems! 

I was super impressed with the results of these mud 'sheet' masks.  The first thing I noticed was the fact my pores had dramatically shrunk in size and my skin appeared smoother and more 'glass' like.  Little spots on my face appeared to have reduced in size and it left my skin feeling really comfortable.  

I'll definitely be purchasing more of these when they are used up!

Su-Man Velvet Skin Brightening Serum 
(Worth £98 from www.beautyexpert.com) 

Over the last couple of years I have become a serum addict! Adding one to my skincare routine both morning and night.  I was excited to try this because of the ingredients and what it promises to do.    As I've only been testing it a for a couple of weeks it's difficult to comment on the long term results however I'd say that it has made some difference in even the short space of time I've been using it.  It has a gel texture and has a really nice consistency and promises anti-ageing benefits with a firmer, brighter complexion. 

I'd be keen to try more products from this range and the packaging is just gorgeous!

Tula Hydrating Day & Night Cream
Full Size (Worth £40 from www.spacenk.com) 

I take multivitamins and a probiotic daily and have done for many many years.  In the couple of weeks I stopped taking them I got ill so I'm convinced they keep me from getting lots of bugs and viruses that go around!!! (this is probably a load of BS but hey ho!) 

When I read about this next product I couldn't wait to try it out.  A multivitamin moisture cream for the skin with probiotic technology....hello....this sounds right up my street and off I went to slather a load of it on my face! haha! 

On a serious note, this product certainly delivers, I've used it both at night and during the day and it plumps up the skin beautifully.  I would certainly think that over prolonged use you'd see the benefits it promises (reduces fine lines and increases skin's firmness) 

Want to start your own Spring Clean?

So those of you who perhaps are not familiar with Mintd Box  they are a relatively new beauty subscription box with a bit of a difference to your 'run of the mill' beauty boxes.  They offer only premium brand products stocked in the likes of Net-a-Porter, Selfridges, Liberty and Harrods and the products are mostly full size so you're getting a great deal (the serum alone in this month's box is worth £98!!!) 

The best part about the Mintd Box is the money saving to be made.  For example, this month's box is worth £186.00  and you can get it for just £65 (and with additional 10% off if you use the code WELCOME17 )  It ships to UK, W.Europe, North America and Australia. 

Shop the Post....


9 March 2017

Mexico....Not What I Was Expecting!

"I thought it was going to be all Tequila, Tacos and Sombreros!..." 

What do you think about when you think of Mexico?! To be brutally honest with you my expectations were not high and I wasn't too sure what to expect at all.  In fact, I was a little worried and I thought it was going to be all tequila, tacos and sombreros and also envisaged it to be quite a lively and dirty place, not really my 'thang' at all! 

What I was not expecting was the ultimate in luxury.... Beautiful coastal views and lush greenery,  relaxation, tranquility,  fantastic food and the people of Mexico to be so kind, welcoming and friendly :)

Now I think it's important to mention here that I stayed in Puerto Vallarta, a resort town on Mexico's Pacific coast.  This is the opposite side of the country to the more popular 'Cancun' and less commercialised.  It took about an hour from the airport to get to our destination but even at night I found it fascinating, travelling to new areas of the world is something I will never get bored of! 

I stayed at Hotel Mousai , an adult-only resort where most people choose to stay on an all-inclusive basis.  Now the snob in me immediately hated the sounded of that! 'All-inclusive' always conjures up the idea of poor food, cheap sub-standard alcohol and crap service but I needn't have been worried! 

"Hotel Mousai was the ultimate in luxury..."

Hotel Mousai was the ultimate in luxury, a large spacious suite overlooking the sea with the most comfortable bed I've ever slept in! The package even included your own butler but I drew the line at someone unpacking my case for me! 

I meant to take some photos of the hotel room when I arrived however I was so excited when I saw the sheer size of the room (and the balcony with the huge jacuzzi and hammock!) that I completely forgot! But if you're interesting in having a nose at the hotel itself click HERE

Having spent over 20 hours travelling to get to Mexico I slept a lot of the following day and because it was very overcast (the only day thank goodness!) I ordered a huge room service breakfast (from the room's own iPad!) and spent the day just relaxing and exploring, then had a jacuzzi whilst watching the sun go down. 

On day two I got up early and made my way up to the rooftop pool area to spend the day basking in the sun!

A tranquil setting (until about 2pm when it gets a bit more lively!) but for the first few hours they play relaxing chillout music and you can hear the sea rolling in below the hotel.  When I wasn't catching up with my Vogue subscription or reading my book I spent most of my time staring out at the ocean, completely mesmerised by the view.

"They were beyond good..."

The sun beds are plush and comfortable (an important factor to me!) and the staff can't do enough to keep the cold drinks, cocktails and food flowing! If you do happen to visit this hotel I can recommend ordering guacamole, salsa and tortilla chips (not on the menu!) or the Shrimp Tacos.  They were beyond good and if you think they're going to taste anything like you get out of El Paso packet....think again, real Mexican food is wonderful, flavoursome and fresh!

I did manage to tear myself away from the pool and the sea to visit the town of Puerto Vallarta one morning and to experience a little bit of the local culture and attractions.

"...visit the town of Puerto Vallarta..."

The coastal road down to the town was a real treat (I spotted some beautiful houses on the way - there's obviously a bit of money in this area!) with endless views of the sea.

The town itself was a little busy and is obviously more 'geared' up for tourists.  To be honest I was more interested in walking around with a coffee and soaking it all in than going into some of the shops and being bullied into buying something.  The shop workers can be a little on the annoying side - just a word of warning!  

One of the highlights for me though was the promenade where they showcase a lot of artwork and statues.  Here's me with my 'E' haha! 

"Here comes the Tequila!.."

Another part of the trip I found really interesting (sidenote - here comes the Tequila - you didn't think I'd leave it out did you? ha!) was a short trip to a local Tequila Distillery.   A family owned business, they explained the full process of how Tequila is made - did you know it was actually made from Agave Plant?! Neither did I! Now I'm not a huge fan of Tequila but coffee chocolate flavoured Tequila - well that's something I can get on board with!! 

The food in the hotel was nothing short of exquisite.  Whether you're a fan of the basics or prefer something a little more fancy.  There are a choice of restaurants (also included are restaurants located in the 'Garza Blanca Preserve' that Hotel Mousai is part of).  The steak restaurant, Bocados STK served the best fillet steak I have ever tasted and oh my goodness, the side dishes....well I could have easily ordered just those and been quite happy! 

"I could have eaten here every night.."

My favourite restaurant being a big sushi lover was Hiroshi, you get all your 'normal' sushi favourites here with the addition of some pieces with a twist.  I could have eaten here every night! My favourites were the lobster rolls and the Mexican Rolls.  So soooo good!

Interesting fact...I loathe going down to breakfast at hotels.  I much prefer it being brought to my room where I can trickle personality into my body at my own leisure (coffee!) and scoff to my hearts content without anyone judging me! All-inclusive and an iPad to select as many items as you want for breakfast is a dangerous thing, let me tell you! My favourite menu items were the salmon and cream cheese bagel, the french toast and the almond croissants to dip into my coffee. Piggy? Me?? ;) 

"The sound of the waves rolling in soothes my soul..."

I wandered down to the beach (a short walk) on a few occasions to be closer to the sea.  The sound of the waves rolling in soothes my soul and I sat their for ages watching pelicans fly above the sea and use their beaks as a spear to catch fish.  Such a simple thing to watch but so captivating!

At the back of the hotel the views were just as sensational as the ocean.  Jungle and greenery making you feel like you are in a real retreat.  The hotel organises hikes through the jungle for those who are more energetic.  Needless to say, I didn't go! But actually, I'm regretting it a bit now. 

This trip was extremely relaxing and exactly what I needed (she says, second week back and drowning in a sea of work!!!) and I'd really recommend this hotel to those of you thinking about this area of Mexico and wanting somewhere plush, tranquil with a bit of culture thrown in when you want it.  

Foodwise, there is something for everyone here too (if sushi isn't your thing - which I know for a lot of people it's not, there are lots of other cuisines and restaurants to choose from)

I haven't taken a lot of pictures of the inside of the hotel to be honest I spent a lot of time outside but you can check this out on the hotel website if you want to have nose!

The flights back were long (I flew via American Airlines to Phoenix and then British Airways to Heathrow - however I've since learnt that Thomson actually do a direct flight to Puerto Vallarta!)

I'm really interested in going to Thailand next so if any of you have any recommendations for hotels then please do let me know.  I'm after something not too over-commercialised but very plush in a beautiful setting and the chance to try some local Thai cuisine!

Stay tuned for my trip to Dubai next week! I'm pretty sure it will be featuring heavily on my Instagram and I'm staying with and meeting up with some of my fave blogging ladies!

Thank you for reading x

© Elisabeth Rilatt

This site uses cookies from Google to deliver its services - Click here for information.

Blogger Template Created by pipdig