June 2021 no-buy review – how did I go


So – how did I go? Well, technically I did buy two extra things on top of the dress that I had budgeted for. So, I guess, technically – I failed. BUT I actually don’t feel like I have failed at all. The two extra things that I bought (an eyeshadow and a skirt) are things that I have thought about buying for a few months now. They weren’t impulse buys, and I am glad I own these things. And that’s something that has become very clear to me this month – there were a few things that I was super tempted to buy but didn’t. I waited it out and in the end I’m so glad not to own these things. I get the 30 day rule now (waiting 30 days before buying something). There is a part of me that wants to want the things. It’s not actually about wanting the actual things as much. It’s the wanting to want, which is bizare. And I’m really not sure what to do with this revelation at this point in time.

With June being a strong sales month I am very proud of saying no to quite a few things. Something I heard in a video recently – is to only own clothes that you would rate 10 out of 10. When you know you know – there is nothing quite like that 10 out of 10 feeling, not 9 out of 10 or even 9,5 out of 10. So if it’s not a 10 out of 10 – why am I buying it? Well, I’m not.

So what I have been doing? Browsing less – because if I look I’m sure I’ll find something I’ll want. Also – waiting it out – if there is something that I do happen to find I just ask myself a couple of questions – like: Why now? What will I wear/use it with? Do I already have something that serves the same/similar purpose? How often will I use it? And I have given a lot of thought to fine tunning my wishlist – deleting items from it more often than I expected.

So now that I have gone through my no-buy I am excited about the budget I have set to make sure I don’t fall behind once again.There is an item (a handbag, it’s almost always a handbag) that I have on my wishlist and that has a fairly hefty price tag attached so I’ll be saving up my budget for that (this is what I used to do and I feel very nostalgic about it in a good way). So that’s next. I hope I don’t have to do a no buy again. As educational they can be they’re also a massive pain in the back side. Like a crush diet – and I’m really not about that. I really prefer all things in moderation.

My June 2021 No-buy


For the last two years I have been working on budgeting and I finally feel like I’m in a good place.

Having said that – I am currently about a months worth of spending above my allocated budget. So – enter No-buy! It would be amazing to start the next half of the year with some money in the budget rather than chasing the spending of previous months. It’s just a month – so it’s very doable. And I will mainly be focusing on my two biggest tripping points – clothing* and beauty (as always).

I am actually looking forward to having some time to just ‘sit’ with what I’ve already got in my wardrobe and having some time to use up some of the products in my beauty stash. No need for anything new at the moment – I’m well stocked.

I’ve been tracking my spending for the past three or four years and other than the above all other spending is not a big issue for me – so everything else is still ok to spend on (within a reason, of course) and I don’t expect it to be disruptive to my budget in the slightest.

*There is a caveat to spending on clothes – I’ve had my eye on a particular dress for the last three months and once it’s back in stock in my size (expected in June) I have decided I will buy it. But everything else is either off limits or will have to wait until after my no buy.

Low buy October (2020 edition)


How about we (I) try again (for what feels like a thousand time). Same old rules, same old goals.

A post on why a low buy is more of a sweet spot for me as opposed to a now buy is coming (I owe it mostly to myself to set it right in an organised and easily digestible way). For now though, let’s get the current task going.

Here I am – at the beginning of the last quarter of what feels like the strangest year ever. For me personally it has wreaked all types of havoc when it comes to my spending habits. I am at a much better place than I was, say, even just two years ago, but still – I had expected to have done better than this. So I’ll try again. I’m not banning all shopping, that doesn’t work for me. I’ll be keeping it minimal. There are some holiday releases heading our way and I have given myself a permission to dabble in some of those, so we’ll see. As always I’ll be focusing on two of the most problematic areas of my overspending – beauty and fashion. I can do it!

My Current No-Buy Wishlist – February 2019


There will be a few no-buy related posts coming your way over the next month or so, but I thought I’ll start with a really fun one.

Ever since I can remember I have always had some kind of wish-list on hand. One of the first ones had a pair of red roller skates on it. Now, however, almost 20 years latter my wish-lists are almost entirely fashion and beauty centred.

For the purposes of this post imagine I was to give myself a free pass to buy some of those very coveted items. So this is what I would pick:


Image source: Pinterest

Anastasia Beverly Hills Norvina Eye Shadow Palette (AUD 76.00) – I finally purchased the Modern Renaissance palette about four months ago and I’ve been so impressed with the quality. The eye-shadows are so soft, so pigmented, blend very nicely and they last so long. Everything you could ever want in an eye-shadow. Norvina seems like a great extension of Modern Renaissance colour scheme and I do love me some good shimmers and purples. Norvina just seems like a natural choice.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Velvet Noir Major Volume Mascara (AUD 39.00) – I’ve been trying for ages to find a good cruelty free mascara but haven’t had any luck so far. I’ve heard great things about this mascara and it would be the next one I would try.

Benefit Boi-ing Brightening Concealer (AUD 38.00/4.4g) – It would be a bit of a panic buy actually. I’ve heard great things about the coverage levels of this concealer. Knowing how little sleep you get once you have a new baby I would be counting on this to make me presentable again.

Chanel Rouge Coco Flash Lipstick (USD 38.00) – this is the most unpractical and illogical of the bunch. A completely unnecessary purchase, it would be a pure indulgence. Something I want based on the branding, packaging and the newness of the product. There really isn’t anything that particularly special about this lipstick. Newertheles, I really, really want it!

GHD Glide Professional Hot Brush (AUD 210.00) – This just seems like such an amazing idea! First few reviews that I’ve seen have been pretty encouraging. I also know that GHD as a brand always delivers so I would have no hesitation to buy their newest hair tool.

At the moment I’m, of course, pretty certain I will buy all of these once my no-buy is actually over but who knows. It will be interesting to see if this list looks the same some nine or even six months in.

Are you doing a no-buy? Hope it’s going well!

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Current Favourites – February 2019


Since I’m doing a no-buy this year most of my current beauty favourites are a bit of a re-discovery products. I have had all of these in my collection for at least a few months now but I just haven’t had the willingness to actually use them. There has always been something newer and more exciting that has taken over. Now, however, I have no excuses to push these aside and as a result I have discovered some real gems.


Glamglow Thirstymud Hydrating Treatment (£16.00/15g) – probably the biggest surprise of the year so far. I have used some Glamglow products in the past and from what I can remember I wasn’t overly impressed so I was in no rush to use this mask. It does say ‘hydrating’, thought, which is something I always seem to want to have more of. I had a pretty intense ‘burning’ sensation when I first applied this (I suspect it’s due to the ginger being one of the ingredients). I didn’t think this would hydrate my skin in the slightest since hydration is something that usually feels quite comfortable and this did not feel comfortable at all. But I was wrong, oh so wrong! Once the burning passed my skin was left feeling smooth and supple. It’s now a product that I can’t wait to have on my face again.

Lipstick Queen Frog Prince Lipstick (£22.00) – even though it looks like a bit of a gimmick it actually is a superb lip product! This is everything every ‘my lips but better’ lip product has ever promised to be – slightly enhances my natural lip colour, gives my lips a good level of shine and feels very comfortable. There’s no patchiness or stickiness and it’s housed in a very nifty lightweight casing. Now only if they brought back the gloss version!

Hourglass brushes – very expensive but I reckon if I added up what I’ve spent over the years trying to find cheaper alternatives the Hourglass brushes would seem quite reasonable. I have the No.1 (£59.00) (I use to apply both pressed and loose powders all over my face) and the No.2 (£53.00) (I use for powder blushes). I have never once been disappointed with these and the application is always exactly what I expect. I’ve now got my eye on the No.3 (all over shadow), No.4 (crease) and No.9 (domed shadow) to ace my eye-shadow game!

Benefit Badgal Bang Mascara (full size £22.00) – Now I’ve got very high standards when it comes to mascaras! Give me all the volume and length, I’ve got no time for those ‘no makeup makeup’ mascaras. I want something that basically looks like fake lashes, every single time. This does exactly that. Definitely worth a repurchase.

Diptique Do Son EDP (AUD 227.00/75ml) – one that I would definitely describe as a winter scent. I moved to Australia just over a year ago and the fact that the seasons are the other way around is still something I haven’t quite got my head around. So my hand automatically reached for this. Who knew it also works well in the middle of summer. (It would work better in that crisp winter air to bring the full potential out of this, but hey-ho!) Tuberose is the dominating note and it’s fairly heavy (in a good way) and lasting scent. A less sophisticated version would be the original Gucci Bloom.

So there it is – my current favourites round up. What have you been loving lately?

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Current Skincare Routine – February 2019


Here’s an update on my current skincare routines. I really enjoy creating and reading these to track which products have stood the test of time.



CleanserOmorovicza Moor Cream Cleanser (full size AUD 103.00/150ml). I first discovered this cleanser back in December 2017 (it was included in the Caroline Hirons x Cult beauty box). It’s a very gentle non-foaming cream cleanser. I wouldn’t really use it for anything else than a morning cleanse (I once attempted to remove sunscreen with this cleanser and it did a horrendous job). At this point I’m not sure I would repurchase. It’s just a bit meh and I’ve been using it as my morning cleanser for over a year now so I’m up for switching things up a bit and trying something new. Not sure what that will be yet, though.

Toner – I’m still using the Omorovicza Queen of Hungary Mist (AUD 49.00/50ml). I’ve lost count how many bottle of this stuff I’ve gone through but it’s still the best! My initial review is HERE.

Serum – at the moment I’m using the Omorovicza Instant Perfection Serum (£85.00/30ml). I’ve only started using it about a week ago, but boy has it impressed me! It applies as a clear watery liquid and absorbs very quickly. The main benefits I have noticed are the hydration and brightening it provides. My complexion just appears fresher and more evened out in terms of both texture and any discolouration (of which I don’t have much to be fair). I also haven’t noticed any interference with other skincare or makeup products I put on top. A definite repurchase.

MoisturiserDrunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Cream (AUD 92.00/50ml). I’m very glad I decided to pick this up. I was very concerned since I had red quite a few reviews saying that this is a fairly heavy moisturiser more suitable for night. I personally haven’t found that to be the case at all. The texture is very solid, but soft and once applied it actually spreads out very thinly and looks almost matte on the skin. I have had zero problems with putting makeup on top of it and I have not noticed any greasy appearance or feel throughout the day. Big thumbs up and a very sure repurchase.

Eye creamMadara Smart Antioxidants Anti-Fatigue Eye Rescue Cream (EUR 31.00/15ml) – it’s good, but that’s more or less all I can say. Seems hydrating enough and I love the very sleek no-fuss packaging. The only con in my experience is the fact that it makes almost all of my mascaras to smudge a little on the bottom lashes. Other than that I would definitely consider repurchasing. At the moment, though, I have a bottle of Drunk Elephant’s C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream (AUD 98.00/15ml) lined up to try next. Once that runs out – I’ll have to reassess.



Cleanser – Emma Hardie Moringa Cleansing Balm (£47.00/100g) – it’s that solid but soft oil texture that I like so much. It melts beautifully once applied and destroys all makeup and/or sunscreen without drying my skin. It also doesn’t stick to your skin and is easily removable with a wet flannel.  An oldie but a goodie that I come back to time and time again. Packaging is not super travel friendly and the fragrance is not to my taste, but other than that I have no complains at all.

MoisturiserAurelia Probiotic Cell Revitalise Night Moisturiser (£58.00/60ml). Simple in packaging and texture but so so effective. I absolutely hate the smell, but the actual formula seems to do wonders for my skin and thankfully the smell doesn’t linger for too long. I always wake up with smooth, supple, well moisturised but not greasy skin. So far it’s the best night cream I’ve ever used.

Eye creamTata Harper Restorative Eye Cream (AUD 138.00/15ml) – by now it’s a staple and I can’t see myself switching to anything else anytime soon. I have really noticed a difference when I’ve stopped using it. If you’re up for my full rave head HERE.

Extra Steps

Since I’m pregnant at the moment I have removed most of the extra treatments from my routine for the time being in fear of using anything that could be harmful. The only “extras” I use are the odd sheet masks every now and then. I really like the Garnier Fresh-Mix Vitamin C Tissue Mask (AUD 6.99/per mask), these are an instant fix whenever my skin is looking particularly dry and/or dull. I have actually become very found of the whole sheet mask thing altogether. I know this doesn’t make much sense but in a way they seem a lot less restrictive than traditional masks (maybe because the sheet masks are so easy to pack for travel).

What is your favourite skincare product at the moment?

P.S. Don’t forget Space NK is running their £15 off for every £60 spent offer until 11 Feb. Great time to stock up!

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My No-buy Year – 2019


I feel like I touched on this in my Beauty Resolutions post back in March last year but it’s taken me the most part of the last year to really hone in on what the actual issue is/was. If I’m really honest with myself overindulging in consumerism is something I have not been happy with for a few years now. Looking back at my journey I definitely can see how I got here and each of the phases was just a natural progression reflecting the places where I was both physically and mentally. Don’t get me wrong I don’t condemn that time by any means. Somehow, however, I’ve ended up in a place where I’m not entirely happy about how things are standing.

Having worked up the carrier ladder has meant that many of the things that I used to see as something that only happens in movies but not to real life people (like me) were starting to happen to me. And pretty frequently too. As far as shopping goes I was now able to afford that designer handbag of dreams and could easily afford luxury beauty products. I no longer had to rummage the shelves of drugstores to find the best savings. I worked hard to get there and I was truly enjoying every second of being in that position. Somewhere along the way, though, it all backfired. Just like with everything else in life having too much of the good stuff becomes not that good at all. What at first was a special experience soon became an everyday occurrence that instead of bringing me joy and excitement started to become very draining. I’m very fortunate that it never brought upon any damaging financial consequences so budgeting is not necessarily my main concern and the reason why I’m doing a no-buy (though, it still plays a role). It’s more the constant longing for that next best thing and not being able to enjoy the abundance of the beautiful things that I already own.

I also hope it will free a lot of my time because at the moment I spend so much of it looking for and researching things that I newer thought I needed. I’m just so tired of the endless search both online and within brick and mortar shops for something that I might want to buy.

In short – I want to become more mindful and appreciative of what I already have and be more present and spend my time on things that truly enrich my life (none of which are material objects).

In the past I’ve tried to cull my shopping habits by setting strict budgets and so far it hasn’t really worked. I’ve also been flirting with the ides of minimalism and I am constantly working on coming up with the best version of a minimalist lifestyle to suit my particular preferences. Again, though, I haven’t really been able to reconcile it all and come up with a workable plan to stop the mindless shopping. I would say that overall things have improved, however, I feels like it’s still not quite right.

Then one day more or less out of nowhere a video by Hannah Louise Poston popped up on my Youtube feed. It was her No Buy Year project and it instantly caught my attention. After a fairly short research to understand what it was and how it worked I spent a few days toying with the idea of taking up a no-buy myself. I had never considering something so radical but I just couldn’t shake the concept, something had just clicked. Long story short – I’ve decided to do a no-buy in 2019.

Everyone can come up with their own rules that will differ from person to person. I too have set my own parameters to make the whole thing more achievable.

My biggest tripping stones by far are clothing (including shoes and accessories) and beauty products. So these are the categories that I am targeting this year. For beauty products the rules are simple – no new beauty purchase except buying genuine replacements (when I run out of something that I can’t replace with another item that I already own). The only purchases here I can see are skincare, hair care and body care items because I really don’t see myself using up any make-up items that I have no alternatives for in my collection already.

For clothes it’s the same again – no purchases and here I’m not even anticipating having to buy any replacements. BUT – I have allowed for two exceptions. Firstly, I’m five months pregnant at the moment and even though I think I’ve got enough maternity clothes left from my first pregnancy I’m allowing for an extra item of maternity wear if I really start feeling I’m getting restricted in my choices. Also, I’m allowing for an item of clothing that makes me feel on top of the world to reward myself when and if I’ve lost the baby weight (which going by my past experience should be at some point later in the year).

Gift vouchers/rewards points/genuine gifts are allowed to be whatever I want. I’m also allowing a reasonable overspend in case I need to spend my own money when a voucher doesn’t cover the full price of a particular item. I’ve deliberately left this particular section of my no-buy rules very relaxed because I want it to be an overall positive experience and something that I can really gain from not some form of self punishment.

Buying things like home-wares, baby stuff, food, travel, beauty treatments and everything else isn’t a particular source of concern for me (and for many other reasons it is not feasible to restrict these categories at this time) so these are not affected by the no-buy. However, if I start noticing that I’m shifting my bad shopping habits to the “clear” categories I’ll review the rules.

I’m hoping to do fairly regular check-ins mostly to document my journey and have something more structured to look back at. I’m also writing down certain things to be able to draw some interesting stats at the end of the project, which I anticipate could be very surprising.

If you too are doing a No-Buy, congratulations and good luck! Please share your tips and progress in the comments section.

For inspiration see Hannah’s channel HERE (it’s also good for an insight of what happens after a no-buy). Rachael (HERE) has a very snappy, structured and realistic approach. And of course, lovely Ysis (HERE) for a feel good and mindful ideas on how to do a no-buy.

Also – to help with re-wiring your brain when it comes to consumerism try Eva’s channel HERE and, of course, the numerous resources available on the whole philosophy behind the Minimalists movement.

Charlotte Tilbury City Exclusives Lipsticks


Charlotte Tilbury new-ish lipstick line-up has three shades – English Beauty, Shanghai Nights (Matte Revolution formula) and American Sweetheart (K.I.S.S.I.N.G formula) (AUD 49/each). Interestingly I noticed the Shanghai Nights first but then decided against it since I’m not a massive bold lip lover. I do, however, feel very comfortable wearing nudes so I did end up getting the other two lipsticks from the collection.


American Sweetheart is slightly red-ish peachy nude. The formula is very pigmented and creamy. It has a nice juicy shine and is so comfortable on the lips. An absolute joy to wear, it’s a perfect everyday shade.


L-R: American Sweetheart, English Beauty

I picked up the English Beauty mostly for sentimental reasons but it turned out to be an excellent choice shade wise. It’s a very pretty natural shade, brighter than your average nude with just the right amount of peach hues. As it was starting to wear off I noticed some golden shimmer particles, which must be why the colour looks so vibrant and not flat as most mattes do. The Matte Revolution formula is impeccable – it’s buttery soft and just glides on the lips almost like a balm would, yet the pigmentation is very strong. It’s one of my favourite formulas out there. I absolutely adore this lipstick!

It’s difficult to choose just one. If I absolutely had to I might lean slightly more towards the American Sweetheart because I do appreciate the shine. But really they are both so nice!

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Inside My Travel Make-up Bag

2017, April, Uncategorized

I’m going away on a mini break next week and I thought it would be interesting to tell you what make-up products I’ll be taking with me. Long gone are the days when I lugged around with a pile of beauty products that wouldn’t even fit in a single suitcase. I now travel with as little make-up as possible. And you’d be surprised how little you actually need. I’ve also learned that I’m quite lazy when it comes to using makeup products when I’m away so I really only need the bare minimum.


I already mentioned the Charlotte Tilbury’s Instant look in a palette (£49.00) HERE and it really is a travelers dream – it has all the face powder products you need save for a setting powder but if you use a decent base product you can easily skip it. I really can’t recommend this palette enough.

Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Lip Protectant Stick #02 Blush (£20.00) – a recent addition to my collection this is a great one-stop lip product. A lot more pigmented than I expected it applies like butter and has SPF 15 so it dubs as a protective lip balm.

It Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC Cream ($15.00/12ml) – extremely hard to get hold of in the UK it’s a great travel friendly base product – the finish is beautiful and the added SPF 50 means that this will have you covered in most climates.

Real Techniques Shading Brush (£6.99) and Charlotte Tilbury Powder & Sculpt Brush (£35.00) are my favourite one-size-fits-all eye and face brushes.

Add mascara as necessary – my current favourite is the Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara (£10.99) and it’s really quite good. It has a thick rubber wand that adds volume and separates lashes without clumping. One of the best drugstore options in my opinion.

I’m also bringing the Delilah Brow Line in Sable (£20.00) with me. It’s one of my all time favourite brow products – it’s a skinny retractable pencil in a super sleek packaging with a good quality spoolie on the other end and the shade match is perfect for me.

What are some of your travel make-up favourites?

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Unnecessary beauty products


One of the things I’m focusing on this year beauty-wise is reducing my beauty product stash and I will talk about this in more detail next month. Today I wanted to tell you about some of the products I never find myself reaching for and there is really no need for me to have these in my collection. I do appreciate this post might make me sound very lazy but I’ve always been a big fan of multitasking and I find other products I already use can easily cover all the steps mentioned below.


Body oils – I used to think these were a luxurious treat for special occasions only so it kind of made sense that all my body oil bottles were pretty much untouched. I’ve now realised the special occasion thing was just an excuse and I actually really don’t like using body oils. The application is messy and I always end up spilling the oil on the bathroom floor which then needs to be cleaned up. They also take ages to absorb regardless of how dry they’re claiming to be. I really just prefer a standard body lotion or a body cream to moisturise my skin.

Solid body butters – see above, except they’re even messier.

Body scrubs – first off – there are not that many good body scrubs on the market anyway, most leave a greasy film on your skin or are way to harsh and scratchy. I use a bath lily most days and if I ever do need some extra exfoliation (I get that feeling once every few months) I just pop on a pair of shower gloves.

Hair masks – I’m lucky enough to have a pretty healthy looking hair so most of the time a decent conditioner does the trick and I don’t need any additional treatments. A proper hair mask is just too much of a faff for me – you usually need to keep them in for good 10 – 20 mins and I just don’t have the patience for that.

Hair oils/serums – most of the ones that I’ve tried leave my hair feeling quite greasy. It might be that I use too much or use it incorrectly but I have tried different methods (wet hair/dry hair/ends only) and none of them seem to work. I use the Redken Extreme Anti-Snap Leave-in Treatment every time I wash my hair and I absolutely love it! Even if I apply too much product it doesn’t leave any residue on my hair and my hair still feels soft and clean.

Cuticle oils – these are lovely to use but I just never, ever reach for them. Most hand creams are now designed to nourish the nails as well as the hands and I use hand creams all the time!

Make-up setting sprays – I’m not a professional make-up artist and most days I don’t need my make up to last for much longer than 5pm mark. I always use a primer under my makeup and I find that works very well at keeping my makeup in place all day. Adding a setting spray just seems a bit over the top. I’d probably use one or the other and I’d have to go for the primer since I’m more familiar with the format.

Foundation brushes – one of the main things I now test whenever I try a new foundation is whether I can apply it with my fingers. Beautyblender is as far as I would go with introducing a beauty tool to apply a foundation since I already use one to apply concealer. I also find Beautyblender is much easier to wash and look after than a brush and it generally gives a nicer overall finish.

What are some of the beauty products/steps you don’t mind skipping?

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