Top 5 Beauty Trends – Spring Summer 2014

Top 5 Beauty Trends – Spring Summer 2014

Hello Sunshine!

It’s time to rethink your bronzer! Creating the sun-kissed glow on your face this season will give you the perfect base for your spring/summer make-up routine. Taking a fresh look at bronzers and moving away from the flawless contoured faces favoured in autumn and winter, summer is calling for a more natural approach to beauty. Focusing the bronzer on the parts of your face that the sun would naturally hit will give you an effortless radiance. Concentrate your buffing around the hairline, top of the cheeks and down the nose, all the natural high points of your face.


FD’s favourites include, the Astor Deluxe Bronzer Safari, £2.99, for a shimmering flush, or for a more natural matte finish try HD Brows Bronzer, £7.99, it works well on all skin tones and gives great colour payoff!

A Wash Of Colour…

Eye shadows seem to be following the same trend for spring/summer ’14 as our bronzers, we are seeing much less of the contoured lids, instead the beauty elite are leading us to a much more simple wash of colour all across the eyes. We love this trend.


Not only does it mean we need far fewer tools in our make-up bag but it also lends itself to a time-friendly make-up routine (…and don’t lie we all appreciate those extra five minutes in bed in the morning!) And what’s a more perfect colour palette than spring pastels to help you stay on trend this summer? Try out Glo Minerals Eye Shadow Trio, £13.20, in Amethyst, for under £15 this trio is a steal.

Simply sweep your favourite summer colour across your whole lid, and work it into the lower lash line. Done! It really is that simple. For a sophisticated twist on this trend, try using metallic shadows, perfect for hot summer nights or hip festivals. Calvin Klein’s Tempting Glimmer Sheer Cream Eye Shadow, £2.25, in Snakeskin Sliver is our favourite to create an opulent glow.


Orange Blossom

Bold and bright? Yes! Hard to pull off? Absolutely not!

This season’s lip colour is orange. Whether you like a subtle sheer tint or a daring matte lip, there’s a shade, formula and lip product for everyone. The shades range from a pastel tangerines that are so easy to wear they will soon become an everyday favourite, to an electric ginger that will push your best eye-catching reds into the depths of your make-up bag. Orange is an ideal colour to freshen up your look this summer as it works well on all skin tones. Why not search for your perfect shade at Fragrance Direct? Or try out one of our ‘Top 10 Lipsticks’ the Calvin Klein Delicious Luxury Creme Lipstick, £2.25, in Orange Too.


Festival Face
With the festival season fast approaching we thought it was the perfect time to start the quest for the best festival cosmetics so you can achieve that tent-friendly face in a flash. Now, we’ve done our shopping (all in the name of research of course!) and found that lip and cheek tints were our go-to product for this festival season. With limited packing space and all the luxuries that tents provide for getting ready, we think it’s time we let our make-up do a little multi-tasking. Whether you work a little of your favourite matte lip shade into your cheeks to compliment your lippy, or you use a liquid tint designed for both lips and cheeks, you’re guaranteed the perfect flush with a matching pout. Our favourite with the Fragrance Direct festival go-ers was definitely the Bourjois UNE Casual Matt Colour Lipstick, £1.99, for a pop of colour in all the right places.

Is White The New Black?

White eyeliner is back. Inspired by the trends on the catwalk, we might not all be able to rock heavy white eyeliner on our lids but worked into the waterline, wow! Adding a white liner to the waterline will instantly make your eyes appear bigger and brighter. Who would say no to that? NYC Kohl Eyeliner Pencil, £0.99, in white has a soft formula that will glide on easy, and then set in place for the day. Don’t miss out, get yours today.

ManFace reviews HUGO BOSS & Elemis

ManFace reviews HUGO BOSS & Elemis

As part of the fabulous Fragrance Direct #NoTiesPlease campaign for Father’s Day, I wanted to suggest an alternative to golf-tees, on-offer supermarket brandy and novelty socks. A fragrance is always a good place to start when it comes to great grooming gifts and there are some superb go-to fragrances that won’t let you down.


One such fragrance is Hugo Boss Bottled Unlimited, which when settled delivers more than your ordinary men’s cologne with top notes of iced violet leaves; a tangy heart of pineapple (very prominent) and a base of sandalwood with musk. But that’s it, 4 notes, each as deliciously fresh, light, airy yet endemically masculine as the other. It’s got a decent fragrance-throw so let him know that he doesn’t need to dowse himself in it as if it were the seventies’ classic, Blue Stratos or the ‘coming back with a vengeance’ Old Spice. Finally, could this be his perfect summer fragrance? Most definitely.


Now we’ve got the fragrance nailed, how about a post-shave saviour from Elemis that is most certainly linked to my fragrance choice (bear with me). I’ve been using The Elemis Post Shave Recovery Mask for the last week or so and from someone who’s prone to outstanding shaving rashes, due to the curse of fair/paper-white and sensitive skin, this could not come more highly recommended.

With a base of Kaolin clay, an ingredient used the world over for it’s drawing/extracting properties, it removes impurities from the skin without harshness or irritation. To soothe and hydrate, there’s Shea butter, an indigenous nut extract from northern Africa as well as mixed vegetable oils; all non-greasy I must point out. Finally to soothe, there’s Thyme, Lavender and Rosemary; three of the most powerful and natural anti-inflammatories out there leaving freshly shaved skin, soft, calm and nourished.

‘So how do these two products link in!?’ I hear you cry. Well, The Elemis Post Shave Recovery Mask leaves your skin with a delicious thyme and lavender kick, which blends beautifully with the top notes of iced violet leaf from the Hugo Boss Bottled Unlimited; together, the scent is insane and without being too crude, mum will love it too.

Everyone’s Guide to Exfoliating

Everyone’s Guide to Exfoliating

Spring is almost gone and Summer is hot on our heels, which can only mean one thing: tanning! Whether you’re an English Rose, have sultry olive skin or a beautiful dark base, the thought of getting your pins out may seem a little daunting..

With the warmer weather comes a sea of opportunities to adorn your favourite shorts, your must-have tea dresses and now that ripped-jeans are ‘in’, not even your knees are safe from the sun, so you may be thinking now is the right time to start prepping your skin. Before you even set your mind towards moisturising and tanning, exfoliating should be your first step on the road to beautifully prepped skin.

So, we exfoliate and we know we should but do we know why? Exfoliating had naturally been part of my daily shower routine but I never properly understood why I was layering my skin in grainy goodness. Other than helping to remove dead skin cells (which is hugely beneficial, but we’ll get on to that soon!), exfoliating can de-clog your pores, remove dirt and blackheads along with helping to prevent ingrown hair. An extra bonus is that exfoliation can leave your skin with an added ‘glow’ which is perfect for when the weather starts to heat up.

One question you may want to ask is, how often should be exfoliating our skin? It’s recommended that you should exfoliate your skin (whether it be face or body) at least twice a week. You may not know it but your skin can shed up to 50,000 skin cells per minute (that’s a lot of skin) and it is constantly in a state of regeneration. The reason why you need to exfoliate is that your skin sometimes doesn’t work as hard as it should to shed this unwanted skin which can lead to clogged pores and breakouts. Depending on your skin type, you can switch up how often you feel you need to exfoliate. Always remember that exfoliation is there to help your skin to look and feel better; if it’s red and irritated, try switching up your exfoliating product or exfoliate a little less!


Polaar Ice Pure Arctic Cotton Gentle Scrub

We love Polaar’s Ice Pure Arctic Cotton Gentle Scrub for helping to gently exfoliate our face. Featuring a dual peeling and polishing action, this invigorating scrub helps to remove dead skin cells without being too harsh on the skin and leaving it feeling like its been stripped of all its nutrients. Cleanse your skin before using this product and don’t forget to moisturise afterwards!


Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Plump Perfect Line Exfoliator

If you have more mature skin or want to start early with your anti-wrinkle regime, Elizabeth Arden’s Ceramide Plump Perfect Line Exfoliator is a great product to try. This is a cleansing and exfoliating product which contains very fine micro beads. These tiny micro beads work to gently remove dead skin. Added vitamins, botanicals and CPT technology, this creamy exfoliator sinks into your fine lines and wrinkles to help them appear plumper and smoother.

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Sunkissed Exfoliating Tan Remover

Don’t think of tanning as a dreaded process when you have products like Sunkissed’s Exfoliating Tan Remover to help you! This versatile product is designed to prep your skin both before and after tanning application. Featuring a blend of fruit AHAs, which are known for their natural exfoliating properties, this Sunkissed item can be applied before your tan to smooth and prepare the skin or after you’ve applied your tan, in the event that things have gotten a little messy. This product is particularly great for helping to even out tan application between the fingers, on the elbows and around the feet (the trickiest places to apply tan!).

One thing to note before using any exfoliating product on your skin is not to exfoliate skin that is sunburned or has any open cuts or wounds. Exfoliating could irritate the skin further!

What are your favourite tips for applying exfoliator?

Sweet Enough To Eat This Easter

Sweet Enough To Eat This Easter

Rich, indulgent flavours’ luxuriously smooth textures’ deliciously sweet treats tempting your senses at every turn’ no, it’s not the Easter egg section of your favourite chocolatiers, it’s our pick of the best sweetly-scented beauty treats to make this Easter more indulgent than ever before’

So forget the calories this Easter – these sweet treats make you beautiful:

Yardley Soap

Cocoa Delights

Yardley’s Cocoa Butter Soap is a cult classic and at the first hint of lather you’ll know why. A blend of Shea butter and vitamin E delivers indulgent moisture to your body while creamy cocoa butter makes the kind of chocolate-scented froth that’ll leave chocoholics everywhere sighing with relief.

Jergens Naturals

Imagine a body moisturiser that conditions and beautifies your skin so deeply it’s left three times more radiant. Now imagine skin enveloped with the a creamy and luxurious formula.. Jergens Naturals Daily Moisturising Body Moisturiser has it all.

Taylor of London

Vanilla Heaven

If the gorgeous packaging hasn’t already sent this everyday indulgence to the top of your wishlist, the heavenly scent of Taylor of London’s Luscious Elegant Rose Hand Wash will ensure it’s a permanent fixture in your bathroom from this day forth. Imagine sweet rose petals – but refreshing; a rich bouquet of flowers- but much more sophisticated. Your hands are in for a treat.

Thierry Mugler Angel

Since you’re being so good and choosing beauty treats instead of calorific Easter eggs (it’s ok, we’ll wait while you hide those wrappers’) we think you deserve an extra-indulgent treat. If, like us, you can’t think of anything better than sweet, seductive vanilla blended with intriguing sandalwood and patchouli, topped up with refreshing splashes of melon, peach and plum, Thierry Mugler’s Angel is your match made in heaven.

Victoria's Secret Body Lotion

Tropical Temptation

Forget grey skies, Victoria’s Secret Coconut Passion Body Lotion is your ticket to Paradise. Its dreamy blend of coconut and vanilla delivers a good-enough-to-eat fragrance, while aloe, vitamin E and C, oat and grapeseed work together to leave your skin soft, smooth and irresistibly touchable.

Happy beautiful Easter…

Sophie’s Sale Picks

Sophie’s Sale Picks

It’s my favourite time of year again – Sale time! This may be the busiest time for a merchandiser but it’s also the best time to get stuck into our bargains and find out what big savings we have on!

It’s part of my job to sift through the 8,000 plus products we have on site and pick out the best sale picks that I can find. It’s a tricky job but someone’s got do it (mainly me). I’ve put together a quick list of my favourite products from our Spring Sale to help do some of the work for you and by hard work I mean I’ve cut down half an hour of web browsing time AT LEAST! So without further ado, here are my Sophie’s Sale Picks!


Emporio Armani Diamonds Summer 2013

One of my favourite things about Spring when it comes to merchandising is all the new fragrance releases that come in for the Summer season. These fragrances are usually limited edition and end up requiring a little bit extra change from your pocket so this is why I firstly come to Emporio Armani Diamonds Summer as my ladies fragrance sale pick. I love that this is a scent specifically catered for the warmer months with notes of Apple Sorbet and Raspberry (yum!) and that more importantly, you can save £9.05 off it as part of our Spring Sale. The bottle design has an aqua theme to it with a flush of turquoise which instantly reminds me of those amazing sea dips that you have on holiday!


Sarah Jessica Parker Lovely

My second ladies sale pick is Sarah Jessica Parker Lovely. This SJP fragrance has been a best seller for the best part of 2013 and 2014 and with a saving of £27.05, it would be wrong to leave it out of my list! Celebrity perfumes tend to have a ‘moment’ before usually taking a back seat and making way for the new fragrance stars however this was never the case with Lovely. Taking inspiration from the gracefulness and class of Sarah Jessica Parker, Lovely became a fragrance that can be worn by women of all ages. Featuring notes of Nectarine and White Orchid, Lovely is a beautiful every day fragrance.


Paco Rabanne Lady Million Gift Set

So I know we like to rave a little bit about Paco Rabanne here in the FD office but that’s because it really is that good! Lady Million is one of my favourite perfumes and if there’s one thing I love more than a fragrance, it’s a fragrance gift set. They’re good value for your money, if not for the amazing packaging they come in then the added extra of a body lotion. Lady Million is a very sensual smell that features notes of African Orange Flower and Raspberry. Although I’d say the opulent gold packaging is designed for more of a younger audience, the scent of this perfume is one that’s so popular, it will go down a treat with any age.


Max Factor Falsh Lash Effect Mascara 24h Black

I’m always on the hunt for a new mascara. Like shopping for clothes, I love testing out new formulas and finding something that works for me. I’m especially picky with mascaras so I was pleasantly surprised when I started using the Max Factor False Lash Effect 24h Mascara (which you can save £7.00 off in the sale). I’ve been a bit wary about using 24h mascaras because in the past, they’ve had a tendency to have horrible thick formulas that clump my lashes together. Thankfully, this Max Factor product applied smoothly and didn’t coat my lashes so much that they looked too dramatic. Although I don’t keep it on for 24 hours at a time (because that would be a little gross), I really like this mascara for helping me to look that little bit more awake in the mornings!


HUGO Just Different

It’s April and I’ve already gotten my Father’s Day present sorted – Are you proud? HUGO Just Different has a saving of £17.05, making the 100ml bottle just £21.95 which is an amazing saving not to be missed. Just Different is a very masculine fragrance which features notes of Ice Cold Mint and Freesia. This is an intensely fresh scent that smells good on just about any man (young or mature) and would make an excellent gift, whether you’re shopping for yourself or a special guy in your life. The bottle design is simple but still makes a statement which is one of the things I love about it!


Elizabeth Arden Visible Difference Moisture Cream

Elizabeth Arden has pretty much been the holy grail of moisturising products ever since 8 Hour Cream stepped onto the scene so when I noticed that their Visible Difference Moisture cream had a saving of £21.01 in the sale, I knew I had to have it. My skin is quite dry so this moisturiser works really well for me as a night cream. Although I don’t have lines or wrinkles (yet!) it’s good to be prepared for the inevitable so I like to stack this on just before bed. I spend a good 10 minutes massaging this product into my face to get the blood flowing and help make my skin feel more awake. If you have oily to combination skin, I would still recommend this product to try but I would advise to use a smaller amount.

Let me know if you’re picking anything up in the sale by leaving a comment below!

Get the Look: SS14 Wild Florals

Get the Look: SS14 Wild Florals

As Miranda Priestly once said in one of my all time favourite films ‘The Devil Wears Prada’ ‘ ‘Florals for spring? Groundbreaking.’ Yes, florals are a reigning staple of a Spring/Summer wardrobe and even if we try to avoid them, you’ll find that your next shopping trip with be filled with blooming prints and patterns.

But is this such a bad thing? Whether you’re the ultimate girly girl or you lean more towards the more androgynous style of dressing, there’s always a way that you can incorporate florals into your new season transition. Of course there’s always dressing in florals but there’s also incorporating a fresh floral scent into your every day fragrance routine!


But first, let’s take a peek at some floral fashion inspiration that you can easily rock as part of your wardrobe. The switch up for this season’s florals was to inject a touch of wildness to your usual blooming patterns. As seen on the catwalk at Vivienne Westwood’s S/S14 collection, Lily Cole strutted down the run way with a floor-length floral gown, wild hair and graphic make-up. Don’t reach for the face paint just yet! Take a closer look at the style of the clothes and how a simple floral dress can be toughened up with the introduction of a thin waist belt and killer shoes.

Even fashion’s favourite tomboy staple, the leather jacket, has been given an update for Spring. Sleek biker style jackets with statement lapels are given a new season makeover with bold floral prints in shades of green, pink and white.

Simple floral summer dresses in chic shades of white with graphic floral patterns are instantly given a harder edge with the addition of a strong collar and pronounced shoulders. This instantly creates a broad silhouette, but don’t worry, the addition of a floral pattern will help to balance the look so that your style is edgy but chic.

My favourite way to add a floral pattern to your wardrobe is through a statement pair of floral jeans. Come rain or shine, we all know that denim will see us through any season, so it’s only natural that florals were going to find their way into the holy grail of denim. Add a statement white blazer to yours to create a sleek figure that will also brighten your look altogether.

So what about when it comes to including florals into your fragrance collection? Chances are that you’ve already found your favourite floral scent but there’s always room to add one more, right? Another great thing about Spring is that an array of new scents are released by our favourite brands with new formulas to add a new level of freshness to our every day routine.


Calvin Klein Endless Euphoria

Endless Euphoria has had such a highly anticipated release that when it arrived on site, the Fragrance Direct girls couldn’t wait to get their hands on it, quite literally! Endless Euphoria features notes of mandarin, cherry blossoms and musk which create the base for this effortlessly floral scent. The extra addition of rose cements Endless Euphoria as a fresh and floral perfume that is a must have scent for Spring.


Dolce & Gabbana Dolce

One word ‘ Floral. This is the word that sums up Dolce perfectly. This is the newest fragrance release from the Dolce & Gabbana brand that features floral notes of papaya flower, white amaryllis and waterflower ‘ the ultimate floral cocktail. The bottle is designed with a flower top which instantly whisks us away to thoughts of Spring!


ChloǸ Roses de ChloǸ

The ultimate floral fragrance has to be ChloǸ Roses de ChloǸ. If you haven’t guessed from the title, Roses de ChloǸ is an incredibly fresh fragrance that was designed around the ingredient of the rose. It also contains lots of other lovely floral elements, such as magnolia and white musk

Come fashion or fragrance, will you be wearing florals for Spring? Let us know by leaving a comment below!