Beauty Sleep: Everything You Need To Know

Beauty Sleep: Everything You Need To Know

Sleep is ALWAYS a hot topic! Did you get a full 8 hours last night? Are you struggling to drop off? According to stats a third of us aren’t regularly getting enough sleep! A well-rested sleep is essential to waking up feeling energized and alert. But we’ve all heard of the term ‘beauty sleep’ so are you getting enough of the zzz’s to make sure you wake up looking fresh faced and glowing?

Sleep is essential for repairing the skin, when we sleep our stress hormone (cortisol) goes down and our sleep hormone (melatonin) goes up. This means our body and skin is in repair mode, it gives our skin the opportunity to shake of the day and recover from any damage it may have caused.

So, what are the main benefits of getting a good night’s sleep?

Youthful and glowing skin

When we sleep this is your skin’s opportunity to repair itself, new skin cells grow much faster when we’re asleep. It’s the perfect time to take advantage of skin renewal and wake up with fresh, luminous skin.

Slow down the ageing process

Your skin’s clock literally turns backwards when you’re asleep! So even though you might feel like you’re getting older at an alarming rate, if you get enough sleep your face won’t show it. Sleeping on your back helps reduce the pressure on the skin which can cause creasing and lead to set in lines. But the continued cell renewal process you get when you sleep helps keep your skin as youthful as possible so give it time to work its magic!

Allows your skincare products to work harder for you

While the layers of your skin are working hard through the night to repair any damage, it also allows for your skincare to properly penetrate the deeper layers of your skin. Your skin is working to build new collagen, which helps keep your skin smooth and firm. The skincare you choose for your night time routine will help aid your skin’s recovery.

So, how do we drop off with ease?

Make sure you properly switch off before heading to bed, put your phone down and get all zen! Use some sleepy, meditation music if you struggle to fall asleep and try some deep belly breathing exercises. This combination will help place your body and brain into a sleepy routine that will help you get those full 8 hours.

A sleep spray for your pillow can be a great addition to help you drift off; they often contain blends of lavender that work to clear your mind and help you fall asleep quicker.

These are our favourite products to promote a full night’s beauty sleep:

Elemis Balancing Lavender Toner
High Alpine Lavender helps maintain the skin’s natural pH balance whilst effectively clarifying the complexion. It will help close the pores after cleansing and rehydrate the skin. The soothing lavender scent will have you drifting off in no time.

REN Clean Skincare Sleep Pillow Spray
A soothing compilation of bio extracts that help to relax and calm the senses for better sleep. With hints to frankincense to put the mind at rest, relaxing hops extract and lavender help to reduce anxiety. This calming spray helps to reduce stress and easy the body into a restful sleep.

Decleor Aromessence Iris Rejuvenating Night Balm
This night balm is formulated to work best when you’re asleep. The sensual and aromatic balm relaxes the senses before sleep and has a heavenly melt-in texture allowing it to be rapidly absorbed by your skin. It intensely moisturises the skin to leave it energised, toned and redefined.

AA Skincare Lavender Calming Multipurpose Gel
This gel is made with pure essential oils and herbal extracts, it’s perfect for calming and soothing irritated, inflamed and unhappy skin. The lavender scent is perfect for relaxing you into a deep night’s sleep, rub a bit of the temples to fully absorb the scent.

Dermalogica Sound Sleep Cocoon
This revitalising treatment gel-cream transforms the skin overnight by optimising night time skin recovery. Tamarind Seed Extract creates a nourishing cocoon of comfort for softer, more hydrated skin while encapsulated, motion-activated French Lavender Essential Oil works all night to promote deep, restful sleep for healthier looking skin by morning.

Q&A: MUA Becca Spills On Growing Up With Her Sights Set On Makeup And How Social Media Has Totally Changed The Game

Q&A: MUA Becca Spills On Growing Up With Her Sights Set On Makeup And How Social Media Has Totally Changed The Game

If you’re a lover of Instagram and all things beauty, you’re probably already following at least one or two makeup artists or beauty pages. But what goes on behind closed doors? What is it like to grow up in an academic-driven environment when your dreams are silver-lined with exciting cities, endless photoshoots and a never-ending supply of luxurious makeup? We caught up with Rebecca Owen, formally known as Becca (MUA), who you may have spotted on Fragrance Direct’s IGTV in between her time working as a freelance hair and makeup artist blessing the faces of many beautiful brides and Nasty Gal models.

Did you always want to build your own business?

I did. I think as a makeup artist it’s a natural progression. I was a hairdresser first and I never worked for myself – it was always for a company. Then I worked on the counters at MAC [cosmetics] and I think you just naturally build into going freelance.

Growing up, what careers were you advised to go in to?

Definitely not hair and makeup. When I was at school obviously it’s very academic-driven and I was like, “No, I want to go and do hair” and I wanted to do makeup at the time, but they never came hand in hand. It was either hair or beauty and even then, it was just a tiny bit of makeup because you know I’m 31, I was 16 at the time and if you were a makeup artist everyone said, “Well what job will you have?”. I was very much guided into doing A-levels and going to uni and all my brothers and sisters did. But I wanted to go and do hair and I knew I was more of a creative type then and I’m just glad that at the time I followed what I knew and went into hair from there.

What would you say is the best thing about makeup?

How it makes a person feel; empowered and confident. When I’ve done someone’s makeup it’s not the final look, as in I’m not looking at how beautiful they look it’s just the feeling of seeing someone walk away – it’s just the empowerment of makeup.

What one product would you say is the most empowering to you?

Definitely a lipstick. The days I feel tired or feel a bit down or I’m in a rush or anything like that, I feel like with a lipstick you just put it on, and you look more pulled together. Even if you don’t want to be seen on one of the days, just knowing that you’ve got that makes you feel more confident.

Would you say that you’re often creative and experimental with makeup or are you a lover of natural glam?

On other people, I’m creative and a lover of bold makeup. On myself personally, I’ve had many years where I used to experiment with makeup and when I go out, I like a smoky eye but I’m not as experimental on myself. But on other people, definitely. I just love how you can tell a story with it and to be able to create that is just amazing.

Would you say social media has changed the game for you at all since you started?

Definitely, yeah! I was having this conversation with friends the other day who are makeup artists. When I first started out, social media didn’t really exist – Facebook did but you would never put your makeup on there, it wasn’t really a thing. I feel like I grew and qualified in makeup and became a makeup artist outside of Instagram, so I’ve had to teach myself how to be better on Instagram. That’s why even now, I’m not the best but it’s such a powerful tool and it’s taken me a while to get my head around it and put myself out there. It’s amazing really.

Who would you say throughout your career you’ve looked up to?

Makeup artist-wise, I would say that when I first started out, I used to watch Lisa Eldridge who’s a professional makeup artist when I did makeup in my early twenties and she was just amazing. She did tutorials and was always a bit different from everyone else and I used to think, “I want to live in London and be doing shoots all the time” and I just really looked up to her and felt that was what I wanted to do. Then other makeup artists along the way I look up to and admire are a lot of MUA’s I follow on Instagram like Nikki DeRoest and HarryMakesItUp [Harriet Hadfield]. From the beginning I just really admired them, thought they were really like me almost and they were just really down to earth.

What advice would you give to other aspiring hair and makeup artists that want to work for themselves?

Follow your dreams. Follow your passion. Don’t compare yourself to others – it’s the worst thing you can do especially where Instagram and social media are so big, you just can’t compare yourself to other people. Everybody goes at their own pace. I’m 31 and feel like I’m only now at a point where I’ve still got so much to grow and so many things that I still want to do. I’d say don’t try and be someone else. Makeup is creative, hair as well, and there is enough room in this industry for everyone!

The Best Of Beauty For Cocktail Lovers

The Best Of Beauty For Cocktail Lovers

When it comes to beauty products and the world of pampering, it’s all about scents. Do you have any favourite fragranced products? Why is it you like them so much? The likelihood is, is that it either reminds you of something or you’re just obsessed with that kind of smell. Worldwide, summertime = cocktail season. It’s that time of year where we opt for cheeky alcoholic beverages that are fruity and topped with ice to keep us feeling cool and refreshed day to evening. So, what better way to experience this scentsational fruity feeling every day than to indulge in cocktails themselves. Today, we’ve rounded up some of the best beauty products for all cocktail-lovers whether you’re partial to a G&T or a creamy colada.

If you like Pina Coladas and getting caught in the rain, this is the perfect product for you. CB&Co Pina Colada Shimmer Hydrating Body Tonic is distinctive, fruity and just like summer in a bottle. This fruity blend of pineapple and coconut is perfect for those with a sweet tooth who like to smell sweet and fruity without that dreaded sticky feeling from super thick lotions. CB&CO’s body tonic will instantly transport you to warm sandy beaches and turquoise waters thanks to its lather-rich formula bursting with vitamin C. This powerful product contains ingredients known to hydrate, soften and fight skin damage to keep your skin looking youthful.

In case you didn’t know, summer candles are a thing and there are so many incredible scents to choose from. Baylis & Harding Fuzzy Duck Pink Gin Fiz Luxury Candles are perfect for the home all throughout the year. This exquisitely fragranced candle set is both delicate and light. They have a great burn time of up to 10 hours and sitting in their ultra-cute pink and gold polka dot jars, they look as incredible as they smell. So, the next time you’re cracking open that bottle of pink gin for the evening, why not light this stunning candle set too to fully indulge in the scent?

If you’re a lover of Mai Tai’s, you need to try the CB&CO Mai Tai Body Wash. What better place to bathe in a tiki-style cocktail than in the shower? This fun and vibrant blend of pineapple, lime and orange is appetisingly sweet and will give you that much-needed taste of a tropical paradise whenever you need it. This nourishing body wash lathers up to give your skin a reparative treat whilst its skin-firming and elasticity-boosting properties work their magic in your hands. This would be a great product to get your hands on if you’re in need of that extra dose of energy in the morning too. Within this range, they also offer full body wash sets in cosmopolitan and mojito scents too!

If we take a step into the makeup department, another product that smells just as incredible is the Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum Foundation made with an original vitamin-rich fruity therapy formula resulting in an even complexion with an anti-fatigue result – even better! This fresh, instant blending gel easily glides on to the skin for an even, natural finish. Imperfections are erased, signs of fatigue are all smoothed out and the skin’s radiance is boosted for up to 16 hours. With just a few drops of this fantastic fruity foundation containing litchi, goji berries and pomegranates you can have amazing coverage resulting in radiant summer skin.

Finally, we have a classic for you to try with just a little something extra. The Possibility Gin & Bramble Tonic 3 in 1 Body Wash & Bath Foam is a must-have for all cocktail lovers. Whether you prefer baths or showers, this product is a great all-rounder and would even be amazing to pour into a travel-sized bottle for any holidays you have coming up. As an added bonus, the recipe for the cocktail is on the front of the bottle. Can it really get any better than this? All you need is 50ml gin syrup, 4 fresh limes, 25ml black raspberry liqueur, 240ml water, 200g caster sugar, ice and the method is easy to follow. Check it out – with the incredible discounts you get here at Fragrance Direct, too, this body wash and bath foam bottle is now reduced to just 99p!

Get Involved With Summer Trends The Right Way

Get Involved With Summer Trends The Right Way

There have been so many trends so far this summer, but the key to acing them is all in the detail. Experimenting with new beauty products is always daunting especially if you’re trying something new so we’re here today to give you all the tips, tricks and products you need to get involved with the summer trends you’ve been seeing all over Instagram and only wishing you could pull off, whereas this type, you can and you will!

Glitter boobs are a thing and I can guarantee you’ll have spotted this trend at different festivals so far this summer. It’s fairly risky – but not if you do it the right way. Here’s how. Start with chunkier gems as these are the guys you’ll be building the rest of the look around. Using real glue over your skin isn’t the best idea for this area so use a brush and smoother your chest in hair gel, it may sound crazy, but it works! Next up is the fun part where you grab glitter tub of choice and paint it on all the places covered with gel. Finally, to lock it all in place, grab a can of hairspray and go wild.
FD Recommends: Prima Makeup Unicorn Poop Glitter Paste

To complete the full summer-mermaid vibe, another super cool trend to try out is wet-look hair. One of the easiest ways to do this is to prepare your hair the night before so that you don’t have to spend hours slaving away under a pair of curling tongs. All you need to do is wet your hair before bed with some water or any nourishing water-based hair spray and plait your hair. For loose waves, do two hair plaits or for tighter more textured waves split your hair into four or even six sections depending on how thick your hair is. In the morning when your hair has dried, if any sections need topping up, just plait that section again and apply a bit of heat to it whether that’s clamping the plait with straighteners or using your blow dryer with a spritz of heat-protectant beforehand of course. To top the look off add in a texturizing spray and any dry oils of your choice from root to tip.
FD Recommends: Fudge Bodifying Salt Enhanced Texture Spray

Have you been scrolling through Instagram and spotted anyone with a few more freckles than usual recently? That will be because of the faux freckle trend. It’s great to do whether you already have freckles or not because the likelihood is, is that when you opt for more coverage with a heavy-duty concealer or foundation for its sweat-proof powers, as well as evening out your skin tone, these products, of course, cover it up too. To bring back your freckles and beauty marks, all you need is a brown liner whether it’s for your lips or eyes. Then delicately pencil on, one dab at a time, until you get the desired effect. To add clusters of freckles around your nose, adding a touch of bronzer and blush beforehand will help to blend them in.
FD Recommends: High Definition Beauty Kajal – Rich Brown

Finally, we have a trend in products and it’s all about a little bit of firming action. Whatever your size and shape, we all struggle with stretch marks and cellulite no matter how curvy those areas may be. So great products to invest in to give you that extra boost of confidence if you need it are products with firming superpowers. Whether you’ve caught the tan of your dreams from your holiday already or you’ve been working all summer and haven’t been abroad, fake tan is here to save the day. It can give you the perfect top-up or an ideal glow when you need it and what’s better is that there are now a fair few formulas with firming creams in them!
FD Recommends: St Tropez Gradual Tan Plus Firming Lotion

Which of these summer trends will you be testing out for yourself! Head on over to our Instagram and be sure to tag us with #TagFD or #FDBeauty so we can see any of your recreations!

Refreshing Summer Candles to Spruce Up Your Home

Refreshing Summer Candles to Spruce Up Your Home

Complement the longer Summer days by keeping your home fresh and bright with some gorgeous seasonal scents. Candles aren’t only for the dark winter days; you can still light a beautiful fresh candle to liven up your home in the warmer months.

There’s plenty of lighter candles that can bring the beach into your home and it’s the perfect time to introduce some scents you wouldn’t usually choose.

Our summery picks are a delicious combination of zesty and refreshing, warm and breezy, sensual and adventurous. So keep reading to check out our top picks and here’s our favourite little tip… make sure you burn your candles for at least two hours to really allow the aroma to release, this also helps them burn evenly rather than pooling and leaving wax up the sides of your candle jar.

Woodwick Sea Salt Vanilla Large Candle

Soft Vanilla blossoms swirled with notes of Sea Salt and Jasmine, the natural wooden wick creates a soothing sound of a crackling fire to take you back to those bonfires on the beach… Woodwick candles have some of the longest burn times in the industry and fragrance your entire room with an inviting scent.

Candlelight Large Ring Pull Gin & Tonic Scented Candle

This candle is guaranteed to take you straight back to that exotic cocktail bar. With a gorgeous, fresh scent of gin & tonic, this candle will definitely get you in the mood for Summer.

Shearer Candles Vanilla & Coconut Large Candle Tin

A heavenly scent of warm baked coconut infused hints of vanilla pod. This gorgeous tin candle is super portable so you can take it anywhere with you to use at a moment’s notice. The beautiful coconut scent will transport you back to those lazy holiday days…

Heart & Home Ellipse Candle Jar White Jasmine & Freesia

This gorgeous 4 wick candle will fill your home with evocative scents that will last all day long. White Jasmine and Freesia is a beautifully fresh scent that leaves you dreaming of warm summer days spent with picnics in meadows.

Shearer Candles Lemon Zest Tin Candle

With a burn time of 20 hours you can be sure that this cute tin candle will keep your home smelling fresh throughout the summer months. A fresh, juicy lemon fragrance that is enhanced by sparkling verbena and lemongrass.

Orla Kiely Fig Tree Scented Candle

This gorgeous candle is fragranced with a Mediterranean blend of balsamic base notes with leafy fig and lavender, finishing with fresh citrus notes. A super fresh, light and summery candle that will transport you off to those Italian gardens in no time.

Candlelight Two Wick India Kashmir and Fig Candle

This beautifully scented candle is Indian-inspired with Pear and Fig, housed in a striking jar that’s decorated with Eastern-influenced motifs in hues of pink, orange and pink. If you’re looking for Asian aromas in your home then this is the candle for you.

The Ultimate Guide To Sweat-Proof Makeup

The Ultimate Guide To Sweat-Proof Makeup

We can’t help but rejoice when the sun makes an appearance each day and blazes us with the heat – if we’re lucky – but with the sun some comes exactly that, heat, that triggers and transforms us into hot sweaty messes no matter how much deodorant we thought would get us through the day. The dreaded SULA (sweaty upper lip alert, didn’t you watch Wild Child?) soon makes its inevitable appearance and as our pores open up in an attempt to cool us down, our makeup disappears by the second. Not ideal. However, this doesn’t have to be reality. Today we’re showcasing some of our best sweat-proof products and techniques you can use to get through this summer flawlessly.

Dermalogica Calm Water Gel is an incredible weightless water-gel moisturiser that hydrates dry, sensitive skin. Its refreshing gel formula transforms into a skin-quenching fluid upon application, forming a weightless barrier against environmental factors such as the sun and pollution. This Dermalogica product has dual hyaluronic acid technology that works in different skin surface layers to increase and lock in moisture too. Indulge in this beauty and let its apple fruit, cactus pear and glycerine ingredients hydrate and support your skin with its water-binding properties.

Bare Minerals BarePro Performance Wear Foundation SPF20 is a great go-to sweat-proof foundation for the summer months. This liquid mineral foundation cares while it covers, improving the appearance of skin texture over time while blurring pores and imperfection. While also helping to increase the longevity of your makeup, this 24-hour full coverage foundation is breathable and powered by Bare Minerals’ Mineral Lock Long-Wear Technology that blends mineral pigments with lipids naturally found in the skin to lock in transfer-resistant colour. With a naturally matte, soft-focus finish, this is perfect for adding both coverage and SPF for a day in the sun.

Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Brow Kohl Liner is perfect is you’re a fan of adding that extra bit of texture to your brows and if you can’t live without a lick of eyeliner. This 24-hour wear liner is, of course, waterproof too. What could be better? This would also be a great product to take along with you on holiday if you fancy having a dip in the pool or are off swimming in the sea. There’s no need to worry about coming out of the ocean with an eyebrow missing when you’ve got this bad boy in your bag.

Keeping in theme with eye makeup, the Lord & Berry Scuba Pro Waterproof Black Mascara is long-wearing, length-defining and actually offers 100% protection against everyday pollutants. It perfectly resists water and humidity yet is extremely gentle on the lashes. With Lord & Berry’s Scuba Extreme, you don’t need to compromise intense colour or thickness – amazing, right?

Finally, to set all of your makeup in place and to give it the ultimate sweat-proof finishing touch, why not try out the W7 Matte Fixing Spray? If you’re hesitant about spritzing what may appear to be a tube of the unknown onto your face, you don’t need to worry. All you need to know is that like many other setting sprays, this one is like any other that you apply to your face once you’ve applied your makeup. Ultimately, it helps prevent smudging and sets your makeup in place for as many hours as you need. This particular spray has a matte finish which makes it even better suited to combat any sun-induced sweats too!

You can shop all of these products right now on our Fragrance Direct shopping site for remarkably discounted prices. Go ahead and take a look to find out how much you can save on some fantastic new makeup goodies to add to your collection.