30 June 2014

L'Occitane Au Bresil Collection

Even though England are no longer in the world cup (which I obviously cared so much about…) it doesn't mean we can't still enjoy the Brazilian themed beauty launches. One that I've been loving recently is the Au Bresil Collection from L'Occitane. It's a pretty large collection consisting of 2 different floral and musky scents and contains a huge range of products. The Vitoria Regia scent is quite a musky floral scent of the Arazonian water flowers and the Jenipapo scent is much more fruity and summery. My favourite products from the range are the Jenipapo Body Lotion as it's lovely and light and the Jenipapo Shower Oil that turns into a milky body wash. I also think the Vitoria-Regia Flower Soap is so beautiful and can't quite bring myself to use it yet. 

I find the SPF's are nice as they're not too heavy or sticky and have the same light and floral scent that the rest of the Jenipapo collection contains. The face SPF is really small and slim so is handy to take to the beach or pool. One thing I love about this collection is that each range contains a unique ingredient sourced from local produce from the Brazil biomes so it's putting back into the community.  

My favourite scent from the range is definitely the Jenipapo as it's much more light and floral, which I like for summer. Have you tried anything from this next collection and which is your favourite scent? 


27 June 2014

Festival Outfit- Brighton Day Trip

Last weekend my boyfriend and I went to Brighton for the day as we both absolutely love it there and it was such a hot sunny day. If I could live anywhere else in the UK apart from London it would hands down be Brighton, it's got such a happy, friendly feel to it and I love the hustle & bustle of the lanes. Even though I'm not going to Glastonbury I thought I would show you the kind of outfit I would put together for a festival. I love the boho festival look and I thought these orange embroidered detailed shorts from Topshop would be so perfect for a festival. As they're quite eye catching I think pairing them with a simple white top is fine then I would add some jewelry and a flower crown (of course). My losoe blouse is from Forever 21 and my boots are an absolute find from Matalan last summer. 

After sitting on the beach for a while we headed into the lanes to shop at one of my favourite homewear shops called Berts. They're a Brighton based company and they essentially sell home items that are identical to the Anthrapologie home section but at a fraction of the price. After going a little crazy in Berts we then headed to The Coal Shed for an early dinner before heading back to London. 


26 June 2014

L'Oreal Colour Riche Nails

If you read my April favourites post (see link here) you would have seen me raving about one of the L’Oreal Colour Riche nails polishes and I mentioned how I wanted to try out more shades. Well, L’Oreal had a 3 for 2 offer on their make-up range in Superdrug so I thought I’d pick up 3 more shades: Pistachio DagreeSex On The peach, and Addictive Plum . The reason I love these polishes is because they go on thick like gel polishes, last for days and dry really smooth. My only issue with them is the amount of product you get compared to other brands as it’s such a small bottle for the price, but when you love a product you just suck it up. On the plus side it does make taking them away with you much easier as they’re so tiny. 

The polishes come in a really great range of colours to take you from Summer to Winter. I like their Les Blancs collection as they’re really opaque after two coats a come in a range of yellow, peach, mint and blue shades, which all look great with a tan.

You can pick up the Colour Riche nails in both Superdrug and Boots. 


25 June 2014

Nivea In-Shower Body Moisturiser- Honey

Last summer Nivea released the first in-shower body moisturiser and I fell head over heels for it. I'm someone who more often than no forgets to moisturiser in the morning so this made my life a whole lot easier. This year they have released 3 new scents: Sea Salt, Honey and Coco Butter. I have the Honey scent and I absolutely love it, the smell is exactly how milky honey/crème brûlée would smell but is also a little fruity too. 
If you've never used an in-shower body moisturiser before you basically use it after you've washed your body and apply it wherever you would normally moisturise then wash it off. It doesn't leave any greasy sticky residue on the skin and speeds up you getting read process. Winner. 

I picked mine up from Superdrug but they’re also available in Boots. 

24 June 2014

Festival Make-up Guide

Following on from my post yesterday about what to pack for a festival I thought I would go through the kind of make-up I would take to a festival and why.
As I mentioned in my previous post I like to pack as light as possible and when you're a beauty junkie like me this can be quite tricky. 

To make sure your foundation lasts all day you want to use a primer. I like the Skyn Iceland Primer* as it mattifies in all the right places and keeps my make-up in place. 
In terms of foundation I think it's a good idea to take a lighter base and something with a little more coverage. Nars Sheer Glow is a really beautiful foundation, one that lasts all day and provides amazing coverage. On a day to day basis I like to mix this with a lighter base so something like a tinter moisturiser or a CC cream. I've been recently trying out the Ole Henriksen Perfect Truth CC Cream* and I'm really loving it. I find it has enough coverage to wear on it's own and as it contains skincare properties you could double this up as a serum to save packing space. When travelling I always decant whatever foundation I use into a small pot so that I don't have to take a huge glass bottle. 

For powder I highly recommend the Rimmel Stay Matte Power as it's cheap and so brilliant at keeping shine at bay. The concealer I would take is another blogger favourite and it's the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer. Multi-tasking products are key for weekends away so I would recommend taking a bronzer and shimmer/highlighter in one. I love the Bobbi Brown Bronze Shimmer Brick*, I think it's amazing for adding warmth into the cheeks and then the lighter shades are perfect for highlighting. A cream blush is perfect for camping as they're super quick and easy to apply and blend really easily, one like the Clarins Cream Blush* are great.

For eyes I would take a compact palette and a paint pot. I absolutely love this palette from Pixi Emeralnd Gold Palette* from The Hut as it's got such a beautiful mix of colours for a bronzed golden smokey eye with a few green tones to add a bit of colour. I raved about the L'Oreal Super Liner in a post last week so I would definitely take that, and then a new mascara discovery, the Max Factor Excess Volume Mascara*.

I would recommend taking a nude/pink lip and a bright colour. I think for the bright lip option I would take something that stays all day and doesn't need touching up and for this I love the Max Factor Lipfinity* duo.

Whatever make up you take I would suggest packing products that last all day without too much touching up. 


23 June 2014

Festival Packing Guide

We are well in the midst of festival season and with Gastonbury kicking off later this week I thought it would be the perfect time to put together a list of everything you'll need to keep you looking and feeling fresh after days of camping in a field. 

I tend to pack everything I need the night before because I know that if I do it on the day I'll definitely forgot something. I also do my nails and fake tan the night before too- I find that having a tan means that by the end of the festival I won't look as horrendous as I feel. I think it's also good to give yourself a facial the night before as your skin will be a bit neglected over the next few days so it's good to give your skin a little pamper.

Products Shown:


As you're going to be packing as light as possible you don't want to take a whole skincare routine because you won't have the space and it's just impractical. Festivals and flights are the only time I allow myself to use face wipes and my favourite ones are from Ole Henriksen because they smell amazing, take all your make-up off and contain lots of skin loving properties to care for you skin. For the rest of my skincare I then take a small sample of serum, a gradual tanning moisturiser to add colour into the skin and a face SPF. The reason I take a separate face SPF is because I want something substantial like an SPF50 that will last all day through rain and mud, and I love the La Roche Posey one as even though is SPF50 it's a really light lotion and does't dry white. Lastly I love the Avene Thermal Water Spray for adding some moisture back into my skin and it feels amazingly refreshing when you wake up in a hot tent!


As I normally wash my hair on the day that I leave I tend to leave it down in my natural wavy style but by the next morning it will be looking a tad greasy so I always take a mini can of Batiste Dry Shampoo with me. I think cordless hair tools are perfect for festival situations and the BaByliss Cordless Hair Curling Tongs are a definite a must for putting a bit of life back into your hair. 
I also take a bunch of hair ties and pins in case I want to put my hair up and my trusty Tangle Teezer, as I can't go without it.


I like to take a mini sample of body moisturiserhand santatiser for obvious reasons, deodorant and sun cream. I really like the This Works In Transit Skin Defense SP30 as t's a really good size that you can pop in your day bag and doesn't leave your skin greasy.  


If you like your nails to look perfect all the time then stick on nails are the one for you, they go on quickly with no fuss and last a good amount of time. I've always used Elegant Touch nails as they come in all different colours and it's the easiest way to change up your nails. Paracetamol is a must along with a camera, and sunglasses. Lastly, whenever I got away anywhere I fill up a Travalo with my favourite perfume as it tiny and will slot into any day bag. For a lip balm I like to use something multi purpose that will double up as a a bit of colour too, and the new Lip Balm Crayons from Clarins are my currently go to for this. 

If you're not super organised and tend to just shove everything in a bag on the day then just try and remember some underwear as you can probably borrow everything else from friends :)


20 June 2014

Clarins HydraQuench Tinted Moisturiser SPF 15

As I’ve mentioned in numerous others posts, I’m a huge fan of a lighter base in the summer as I hate my skin feeling all sticky and clogged up. London has been so hot recently I’ve been really enjoying using the HydraQuench Tinted Moisturiser from Clarins as I find it provides great coverage but leaves a really nice glow on the skin. It also contains SPF 15 so if you’re having a super lazy day you could just pop this on with a bit of concealer if needed and you’re good to go! One thing I would mention to you is that the shade range really is on the dark side so not great for those with fair skin. I originally got the shade 02 Honey as I thought it would be a nice in-between colour and perfect for tanned skin but it’s so, so dark, and so much darker than I would ever go when tanned. I then tried 01 Sand, which even though it’s only one shade lighter than Honey it was so much better suited for my skin tone and is only slightly darker than my natural colour so will be perfect after I’ve been on holiday.

HydraQuench contains so many moisturising properties including ** so you could quite easily use this straight after a serum and skip the moisturiser step, which I never normally do. I find you can also use this if you have dry skin as the colour doesn’t stick to dry areas of skin, which a lot of products do to me.

If you have fair skin I would suggest picking up the shade Porcelain 00 and then Sand 01 if you have a little bit of colour to your skin. I think any shade above Sand would only look natural on someone with olive skin tone or very tanned skin/dark skin.

19 June 2014

Bright Lips for Summer

When I'm tanned one of my favourite things to change up with my make up is my lip colour. I think a bright lip looks so beautiful with simple glowing make up and makes your skin look even more like a bronzed goddess that it already does. The picture above is of some of my favourite bright pinks/coral lip products for the summer with a real range of textures, because I'm crazy like that and want to mix it up.

If I'm looking for something a little more long lasting then I'll use a lip stain like the ones from Max Factor as they are similar to higher end long lasting glosses but a third of the price. If you want a happy medium in terms of coverage then I love the Max Factor glosses as they add just the right amount of colour without being too much. These as similar to the Bobbi Brown lip glosses, which I always seem to have one of in my handbag. For a wash of colour over a lipstick I really love the Maybelline Colour Sensation glosses for every day wear as they're non sticky and come in a great range of shades. 

When you're on holiday what is the one thing in your make up that you like to change up?

18 June 2014

L'Oreal Super Liner

If you're a feline flick eyeliner girl like me then you too will be on the never ending hunt for the perfect liquid liner. Now I'm not saying that I've found it but I've found a pretty awesome one that makes me turn my nose up at any others I've tried out recently. Even the Alexa Chung Eyeco liner. 

So what is this amazing product I'm talking about? It's the Superliner from L'Oreal and it comes with a long tapered tip that allows for super precise thin lines by using the end of the brush or a thicker line by dragging the whole brush along your lash line. It draws on a super black line that lasts all day until taken off with make-up remover and allows for the perfect feline flick. 

The way you can tell a good liner is by testing it on your hand and seeing how much effort it takes to wipe off. If it comes off easily then it probably won't last too long on your eyes. I've found that this one takes quite a bit of effort to remove without any kind of make-up remover and forms some kind of bond as it's drawn on so sits as a perfectly smooth line. 

I picked up the L'Oreal Superliner from Superdrug for £6.49


17 June 2014

Chanel Beauty Haul

If you follow me on Instagram (@gemmalondonlife) you'll know that I'm somewhat of a Chanel fan, but then what girl isn't? I recently picked up a few bits and thought I'd d a mini haul for you all. I've been lusting after the Chanel eye shadow pots for a good while now so was pretty happy to get my hands on a beautiful golden bronzed shade. These are great as they layer perfectly over any eye shadow or can be built up and worn alone as an intense bronzed goddess look. I originally thought these were similar to the Maybelline paint pots but they're a lot more glittery and not as intense. Next I picked up an eye shadow quad in the shade Raffinement; I picked up this quad as it contains a mix of shades that I wear on a day to day basis. It contains the perfect colours for a dramatic smokey eye but als a few lighter shades for the day. Lastly is a Rouge Coco Shine in shade Viva and even though these are not as intense as a lipstick their colour pay off is still pretty impressive. What I love about these is they can be used as a wash of colour in one application or built up for a bright pop of colour with a few coats. 

I think Chanel do really great make up and is the perfect present to yourself if you feel like a little treat, but it can be quite pricey so I would definitely do my research before buying something. I tend to peruse the make-up stands a number of times, endlessly swatching before I finally take the plunge. 

As much as I love most things from Chanel, if I had to recommend certain products it would be their foundation and lipsticks (see reviews here and here). Their Aqua Vitalumiere is one of my favourite foundations and one that I know I will continue to repurchase.

I would love to know if you have any Chanel make-up that you're currently lusting after? 


16 June 2014

Herman Ze German

Some of my favourite places in London are the small quaint Soho eateries buzzing with tonnes of atmosphere and deliciously cheap food. A few weeks ago my boyfriend and I popped along to Herman ze German in Soho for some kick ass hotdogs and fries. 

I'd heard some amazing things about Herman ze German and after seeing a number of blog reviews it's definitely been on my 'To Eat' list on my iPhone for a good while. Does anyone else have one of those? Mine is constantly being updated and I feel like I'm never going to get through it!

The little eatery is based on Villiers Street in Soho and has that familiar buzzy, relaxed feel that all the new London restaurants have.  

There's a fair bit to pick from off the menu as they do a variety of different sausages and Currywurst's and then a number of different sides to choose from, so there's definitely something for everyone. 

I opted for the Bockwurst (smokey pork) and T ordered the Bratwurst (pork & Veal) then we both had a side of fries.

I have to say that I'm normally more of a burger girl but my first ever Bockwurst was freaking delicious. They use freshly baked crispy rolls and top off your sausage with crispy onions. I would definitely recommend the Bockwurst if you like your meat with a bit more of a deeper flavour as you could really taste the smokeyness coming through. My boyfriend liked his Bratwurst but didn't love it, he said mine was much better and preferred the ones you get at Winter Wonderland- he's only got a few months until it opens again... 

There's a good selection of sides but I would recommend the fries as they were perfectly crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside and even more delicious with lashings of mayo. 

(I look like I'm having a bit of a moment with my hotdog)

If you're looking for a quick lunch or casual dinner I'd for sure suggest heading to Herman but if you don't want to queue I'd arrive as early as you can as it can get quite busy and being one of the new cool London restaurants you can't book a table- of course. 

Soho is one of my favourite spots in London as not matter what time or day it is there's always a cool buzz especially when the sun is out as it feels like every street is having it's own street party. Some of my favourite cocktail places are in Soho so if you're visiting London anytime soon definitely add it to you 'To Go' list!


13 June 2014

Toni & Guy Fashion Fix

A few weeks ago I was invited down to the new Toni & Guy Curzon’s Street salon to try out their easy to wear dry up-do styles in celebration of being them being the official sponsor of London Fashion Week for 10 years! To celebrate this amazing achievement Toni & Guy salons around the UK are now offering customers a chance to try out one of the 10 styles that featured on the AW14 runways at an affordable price of £25. The style only takes 30 minutes to get you party perfect and you’ll receive a mini Label M sample of the styling product used to create your look.

The style I chose to try out was a take on the classic Bardot Beehive. The lovely International Artistic Director Pinar used a whole lot of mousse to create volume, added in some curls at the back to create movement and then back combed the top part of my hair to create the signature Bridget Bardot beehive. As I wanted to keep part of my hair down Pinar only pinned the top half of my hair up and then left the bottom half down to show off my curls. 

I think the Fashion Fix is such a great idea for when you're going to an event/prom/ball and want to try something that you wouldn't be able to do yourself or if like me you're just going out for dinner and cocktails with your friends and want something a little different.

See the link here for a full list of the participating Fashion Fix Toni and Guy salons across the UK.    

12 June 2014

L'Occitane The Royal Ballet Almond Beauty Pouch

L'Occitane has recently released such a beautiful collaboration between the Royal Ballet and their ever so delicate Almond scented range. The Almond collection from L'Occitane is probably one of my favourite scents from them, I find it so fresh and light and the perfect range to pair with the Royal Ballet. The range is all about firming and toning the body for summer so contains a mix of products that aim to do just that. 

Lighter Legs* is a moisturiser that along with the almond oil also contains menthol and peppermint essential oils to help relieve the sensation for tired feet and legs. The product sinks in straight away whilst still leaving a fresh feeling on the skin. I think this would be perfect to use after a flight when your legs and feet feel puffer and heavy. 

The Tonic Body Oil* is an ultra-dry oil that isn’t absorbed into the skin straight away but doesn’t leave to much of an oily feel to your skin. An added bonus of this product is that it contains a powerful complex of ingredients including silcium that help to firm and slim your figure over time. Now I can't say I've noticed a huge difference in the overall toning of my legs in the time that I've been using this but it's definitely worked at adding moisture back into my dry areas and is a product that I'm going to continue using over the summer. 

Lastly is the Smooth Hands* moisturiser, which I love and have been using so much that it's firmly placed on my work desk. Like all the other products from this range it contains the delicate almond blossom scent and the texture is lovely and velvety so doesn't leave your hands feeling too slippery, which is something I hate in a hand cream.  

You can pick up the Royal Ballet Beauty Pouch for a limited time only for £49 or individually starting a £14. 


11 June 2014

Barry M- Almond Gelly Polish

I have been looking for the perfect mushroom/purple-grey coloured nail polish for I don't even know how long- probably over 2 years and I think I've finally found it. The new summer range of Gelly polishes from Barry M have a really nice mix of muted down easy to wear shades. Almond is a really lovely chic colour and would love great with any outfit and also as a base under glitter. I love the formula of the Gelly Polishes as they thick and glossy in two coats and are easy and cheap to get hold of if you can't afford the other gel polishes out there. 

I've also got my eye on Coconut which is a lovely off white shade and Elderberry, a muted down blue colour. 

The new Summer range and all other colours are available in Boots and Superdrug now. 

10 June 2014

Summer Beauty Trends

I'm writing this on Sunday which has turned out to be a B-E-Autiful day so I thought now would be the perfect time to talk about some do-able beauty trends for the Summer. 

You won't be surprised that golden glowing skin is a trend for summer 2014 and I think the most natural way to achieve this is by using a lighter base- something like a tinted moisturiser or a CC cream would work perfectly. I've been really liking the Hydra Quench Tinted Moisturiser from Clarins as it's light enough to not feel like you've got too much on the skin but also provides a good amount of coverage. I try not to use too much powder on my cheeks as I like the natural glowing look and a perfect bronzing product for this is the Radiance Gel Bronzer from Chantecaille (full review here). 

The next wearable trend is orange/bright pink lips, which I think is so perfect with the glowing skin trend. I think a bright lip looks so beautiful on tanned skin and if you're brave enough, then I say the brighter the better. I've got a real selection in the image above but if you want something that won't budge in the heat then I'd suggest the Max Factor Lipfinity Lip Glosses as they have some serious staying power. 

It looks like aquatic eyes are making a comeback and I find the perfect way to do this is by adding a small amount of blue to the waterline. Something like the new palette from Clarins is perfect for this look as it also has some neutral and bronzed colours. 

Lastly, it isn't really a trend but I always like to switch up my shower gels and moisturisers in the summer to something a little more fruity. My current favourite scents are the new L'Occitane Au Brazil range and the Orange and Bermagot range from Molton Brown. You can pick both of these up in Bicester Village at up to 60% off the RRP. I like to head to one of the Collection of Chic Outlet Shopping Villages whenever I’m in Europe as they have a great selection of beauty brands on top of all the amazing fashion brands. It’s a great way to stay up to date on all the latest trends on a budget. They have 9 outlet villages across Europe and 1 in Shanghai, find out more on their Facebook page.

*Sponsored post by Chic Outlet Shopping


9 June 2014

Chantecaille Radiance Gel Bronzer

As we've had a couple of beautifully hot sunny days this week its time that I start adding a bit of colour back into my skin to make people think I have naturally glowing complexion. I've been trying out the Radiance Gel Bronzer from Chantecaille and I have to say that it's a super quick and easy way to cheat your way to a sun kissed glow. What I love about this product is that a little goes a very long way. I apply a tiny amount to the back of my hand and then use my Real Techniques Expert Face brush to dab and blend onto the areas where the sun would naturally hit my face. 

The Bronzing Gel only comes in one shade and even though I have fair skin I still find this blends out to a natural glow and isn't too orange. I imagine you can also build this up quite easily if you have a darker skin tone. The only down side of this product is the price tag. As with any Chantecaille product this is quite pricey at £51, but if you're like me and work things out at cost per use then it's totally justifiable. 

I can see this being a summer favourite in the hotter months as for now it applies perfectly over foundation but I just think this will add such a nice healthy glow on top of tinted moisturisers or CC creams over the summer. 

Chantecaille can be found online or in store at Liberty and Space NK.

8 June 2014

Picnic in the park

If you follow me on Instagram (@Gemmalondonlife) you'll have seen that I spent all day having a little picnic on Clapham Common sitting in the sun and eating watermelon (I've become a bit obsessed with this over the weekend). I wore my new favourite flip flops from a new London based company called Flopz (check them out) and a little T shirt dress with lots of SPF. I really love when the sun is out in London as everyone just seems so much happier and care free and all the streets are bustling with people. Let's hope the sunshine stays around for more than a day so that we can finally say hello to summer dresses and goodbye to jeans and boots- that may be a bit ambitious though!

I hope you all had a lovely weekend. 

5 June 2014

Beautiful Underarms With Dove

We've all been there you're just about to rush out the door in a black dress or top and you forget you've not put on any deodorant so apply it last minute only to be left with a huge white patch under the arms. Dove knows just how annoying this can be so have developed their new Invisible Dry Roll on and Compressed Spray Deodorant- giving women the power to be daring with colours this summer. They tested the formula on over 100 different colours to make sure that no white powder is visible on any coloured clothing and I have to say, I'm pretty impressed with the results. Not only is the product white powder disaster area free but it also contains lots of nourishing and moisturising ingredients to soothe your underarm area. 

We all put so much effort into moisturising our body, paying special attention to our legs after shaving, so why do we always forget to moisturise our underarms? I do it too, I just forget that that part of my skin also needs moisturising and it can get quite sensitive and sore so I'm really pleased that this new disaster free product also contains their signature underarm skincare.  

You can pick up the new Dove Invisible Dry Deodorant in Boots online and in Store.

3 June 2014

The Body Shop Body Sorbets

Body Sorbet- Strawberry-£7*
Body Sorbet- Moringa-£7*

As we've somehow found ourselves in June I'm crossed all my fingers and toes that the weather will start to get a little nicer so that we can say goodbye to bit jumpers and coats. If you're like me you love super moisturising body butters in the colder months but hate the sticky feeling they leave in summer. The Body Shop has taken this on board and released a new line of moisturises called their Body Sorbets, perfect for hot sticky months. 

The new formulation means that once applied your skin is left feeling nice and hydrated but without any sticky, greasy residue. They're made from cold-pressed oil so they're absorbed into the skin straight away so that you're just left with the lovely fruity scents. I have to scents Strawberry and Moringa but there is also Mango, Satsuma and Pink Grapefruit in the range. My favourite is definitely the Moringa as it's such a beautiful light and floral scent that sits perfectly under any perfume. I can definitely see these being my go to moisturisers over the next few months. 

These launch in The Body Shop July 16th- just in time for summer.

2 June 2014

Olay Total Effects CC Cream SPF 15

During the summer London can get pretty humid and disgusting so the last thing I want to do is pile of foundation as it's just going to feel far too heavy. When it gets hot I prefer to use a lighter base like a CC cream or a tinted moisturiser. I was recently sent the Olay Total Effects 7 CC cream to try and upon swatching I knew instantly that I was going to get a lot of use of it. I have the shade light/medium which is perfect if you have fair skin like me as it blends into look really natural on the skin whilst still giving a nice amount of coverage. 

Along with being a CC cream so corrects your complexion over time it is also contains SPF 15 against UVA and UVB rays, which means you can also skin the steps of applying another layer of SPF onto your skin. Along with feeling really lovely on the skin this product also has a really lovely scent to it as it kind of has the smell of holidays mixed with a nice face cream. This product is aimed at more younger and youthful skin whilst still containing the 7 anti-aging skincare benefits. 
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