La Roche Posay Brand Review

I am pretty sure this will not come as a surprise to you all but La Roche Posay is definitely one of my favourite French Skincare Brands. I am super pleased you can buy majority of their products from drugstores like Boots and online from Escentuals, Garden Pharmacy, etc. I have featured many of these products in their own reviews but I thought it would be nice to do a lovely brand review. I was contacted by La Roche Posay to see if I would like to try their new Sun Screen- The Anthelios XL Sunscreen SPF 50 and of course, I said yes. They kindly sent it over to me with some other products for a complete skincare overhaul. If you read my blog regularly you would have seen some reviews of these products which I purchased for myself. I was really pleased to receive back ups of all my favourite products from La Roche Posay and I will be giving out some tomorrow so stay tuned for a giveaway. I also received one product which I have not tried before so I was very delighted and I love it as expected.

La Roche Posay Physiological Cleanser*
This was one of the products I had not tried although I had my eyes on it. I love the pristine white packaging complete with a pump which I always love to have with skincare products. It is such a gentle cleanser and it removes all my makeup without any hassles. I don’t have to scrub or rub my face at all; all I do is a gentle massage in circular motions. It is enriched with La Roche Posay’s thermal spring water which I think may be why it feels ever so gentle. The good thing about this cleanser is that it does not strip my face out at all and it stabilises the PH of my skin.  As expected with many La Roche Posay products, the Physiological Cleanser is colorant-free, paraben-free and free from alcohol. For my combination/oily skin (also blemish prone), this cleanser is really good and I have not broken out at all. I still use my Neutrogena Visibly Clear Wash every other day to ensure my skin is gently exfoliated. Together, they have worked to keep my skin clear.

La Roche Posay Micro Exfoliant Astringent Lotion*
This is actually my third bottle of this toner and I absolutely love it. I got the first one when I went to Paris and I have not looked back since. This is actually my third bottle and I absolutely love it. It is described as a micro-exfoliant which helps tighten and unblocks the pores. If you suffer from acne/blemishes and/or congested pores, you would enjoy suing this toner. I use it straight after cleansing and I just tip some onto a cotton pad and swipe downwards on my face. Although it contains alcohol, you can hardly tell as it does not dry out my skin at all. It is really gentle yet effective and it has been a staple in my skincare for a few months now. Due to its Salicylic Acid content, it can be classified as a BHA exfoliant which penetrates the pores to decongest it and prevent future breakouts. I just love this stuff and I use it almost every day. If you have sensitive skin, I believe you can still use this.

La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo (+)*
Say hello to one of the most hyped acne skincare products in the blogging world!! I remember a few years ago, it was literarily the bee’s knees and I can understand why. The first time I tried it out, I purchased it from Boots when they had 1/3rd off La Roche Posay products. Four tubes later, I can say hand on my heart that it is one product that I have repurchased a lot and I can’t be without it. The Effaclar Duo is targeted at people with congested skin who are also prone to breakouts. When I first tried it, I did not quite see any huge differences until I stopped using it. I would classify it as more of a preventative product which ensures my pores stay clear. It works to ensure that I don’t break out and if by any chance I do (sometimes hormonal breakouts are just nutters), then it ensures it does not leave a scar. I have incorporated this in my skincare for a long while now and I can say my skin has really made a turn around. I have also noticed that some new spots that managed to get on my face did not leave any pigmentation/blemishes because I was using the Effaclar Duo as well as other products. I don’t think it works as effectively on older blemishes/hyper pigmentation as it does with newer ones. It’s one of my favourite products from the range. I have a full review here.

La Roche Posay  Effaclar A.I. Targeted Breakout Corrector*
I cannot even articulate how much I love this product and it has featured on my Empties Product Video and French Skincare Video. I can no longer even count how many times I have repurchased this product because it is so good. As the name suggests, it is a targeted breakout corrector which helps minimise any active spots. It is one of the products that actually works and it always gets rid of any spots I have usually within one day (at the worst two days). The best thing is it can be used under your makeup as it is non-comedogenic and it gets absorbed so quickly without interfering with your makeup. I don’t use it every day; only on days when I sense I may have a breakout (when I eats crap or near my period) or when I have one (usually after I have been neglecting my skin).  I find that using the Effaclar Duo and the Effaclar A. I is one of the ways that have successfully kept my skin blemish free. I strongly recommend this product as it is one i always fall back to and it absolutely works for me. I have a full review here

La Roche Posay Serozinc 
We all chimed a resounding Hallelujah when Escentual announced that the coveted La Roche Posay’s Serozinc was available to be purchased in the UK. Before this year, we all had to get Serozinc from across the pond or from Ebay at very extortionate amount. Why take all this trouble? Well, the simple answer is mainly because it is actually effective. It is made from only three ingredients (Water, Zinc Sulfate and Sodium Chloride), yet it works so well with many reviews online raving about it. I use it particularly when my skin is feeling a little worse for wear and needs to be refreshed. It helps relieve redness from spots and generally reduce the size and eventually get rid of it with the help of other skincare products. It feels so refreshing and I love how it comes out from the nozzle; not too much and not too little. I have a full review here.

La Roche Posay Anthelios XL Sunscreen SPF 50 (Dry Touch Gel Cream)*
A few years ago, I was on the haunt for a good sunscreen. I understood the benefits of using sunscreens especially to prevent my spots from getting darker. I tried a few sunscreens which were so greasy, left white/blue casts and difficult to get absorbed which meant it was almost impossible to use under makeup. I stumbled upon the Anthelios XL Sunscreen in Boots and tried it out and was super shocked as it was everything I want in a sunscreen. I particularly like that they are designed to suit your skin type. I chose the Dry Touch Gel Cream which has a matte finish and even acts as a primer for my foundation. I love, love this sunscreen and it has an SPF 50 which protects my skin from UVA/UVB rays. La Roche Posay have recently changed the packaging and they sent me this new one to try which I absolutely love. It feels like the same formula but in a slimmer tube which looks cute. I have a full review here

Overall Thoughts
I am sure you can tell that I am obsessed with La Roche Posay skincare products especially their Effaclar range which is designed for combination/oily skin that is also acne/blemish prone. They are the first products I always add in my shopping basket whenever Escentual have their 1/3rd off French Skincare which is sadly ending today so hurry up if you want to bag any bargain. I also want to thank La Roche Posay for sending me back ups of all my favourite products. It is really lovely when one of your favourite brands appreciate your blog. Remember to check back tomorrow because I have a Giveaway for your guys to win some of these products. Have you tried any products from La Roche Posay?
*PR Samples and some links are affiliate links, read my full disclaimer here

Kiko Mat Base Corrector Primer Review

It’s very rare that I would rush to put up a review of a beauty product I love because I prefer to test it out for a couple of weeks (sometimes a month) so I can write a detailed review. However, there comes a time when you come across a product that blows you off your socks and that’s exactly how I feel about the Kiko Mat Base Corrector Primer. O.M.G. If you have oily skin that makes your foundation look pretty shiny during the course of the day with an even shinier T-zone at the end of the day, then listen up. You would absolutely love this primer. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves and let’s get to the details of  this lovely primer. I have heard so much about this primer but I just could not bring myself to order it online and pay for delivery charges. I always prefer going to test products in-store if I can and buy it right there. I may be wrong but Kiko Cosmetics stock two kinds of primers from this range; A Smoothing Corrector Primer (for dry skin and normal skin I presume) and the Mat Base Corrector Primer (for combination and oily skin). Of course I had to choose the latter because I knew it was suitable for my skin tone. When I watched Jennifer’s review of this product on her YouTube channel, I just knew I had to literally rush out to get it; that was the icing on the cake for me. I trust her recommendations as a Makeup Artist and she has also got my face beat so I know she knows what she is doing.

Kiko Cosmetics- Brief Overview
Kiko Cosmetics has been on the radar for a few years now especially here in the UK. I was actually quite delighted when I found out they had set up shops here in London and Leeds. I think they have two shops in London; one smack in front of Oxford Circus Station and another in Westfield. They are an Italian Makeup Brand based in Milan, Italy and they stock all things beauty and skincare including their best selling eyeshadow sticks,  bronzers, foundations, concealers and of course, this primer.

I really like the outer packaging that this primer comes in as it is well made and reminds me of NARS packaging. Inside, you get a slim long tube which contains 17 ml of product. Initially, I thought it was quite a small amount but you only need a little of this product to go a long way. The tube also has a pointy tip which I like because it means it controls how much product is dispensed. It also prevents any waste of the product and any cross contamination which you may find with tubes that have larger openings.

When I first got it, I was keen to see how the texture felt. It was a little difficult to come out of the tube (at first) but I think that’s really good to help manage how much one uses. It came out eventually and it looked like a thick cream/lotion which I was quite surprised about. It’s not completely white; it’s more of a light creamy/beigey colour.  However, it does not interfere with your foundation’s colour and it goes on clear on the skin. On application to my skin, it was relatively easy to blend but it set really fast. It felt ever so slightly tight on the skin and it instantly mattified the area I applied it to (as you can see from the picture). Once it sets, you can feel its presence on the area where you have applied it but it’s nothing uncomfortable. If you have dry skin or dehydrated skin or you prefer a dewy foundation finish, this primer is absolutely not for you. It also does a good job in blurring out my enlarged pores and make my foundation go on really flawlessly.

How I use it
The trick behind getting the best results from this foundation is very dependent on how you apply it. As mentioned earlier, it incredibly mattifies the area of the skin the skin where it has been applied so you only need a small amount. I just dispense a tiny amount (almost just a drop) and I apply it with downwards strokes on my T-zones, cheeks, and some section near my nose where I have enlarged pores. I always wait for it to set (it does this really fast anyway) before proceeding with concealer or foundation depending on what I am using that day. If you apply it all over your face or if you use too much, it would be incredibly difficult to blend in your foundation or concealer. Moderation is the key here and you only need such a tiny amount for the whole face.

Ladies and Gents!! I cannot even stop raving about this primer even if I tried. The results are absolutely outstanding especially for my skin type (combination/oily). When I use a good primer even my beloved Laura Mercier Foundation Primer, I still get some shine on my face towards the close of play or around 3pm.  I have to use a mattifying powder or blotting paper to take it away. With the Kiko Primer, my foundation stayed the same way till I got home to take it off. It was intact; no shiny T-zones and no fading of my foundation/concealer. I did not need to blot with a powder at all (unless it's a terribly warm/hot day). It has seriously upped my foundation/face makeup game and I am absolutely obsessed with it right now. The only other primer which I have heard provides similar results to this is the Becca Ever Matte Primer which I really want to try someday,

I think the cost even makes me love it more as it retails for only £8.90. You cannot go wrong with that price at all. It’s such an amazing value for the money you pay, in fact you get so much more for your buck. If Kiko have any discounts, I would hop on the website or go in-store and pick up a few more as back up. I have been recommending this primer to anyone I know because it is truly incredibly. (OK, I will stop now!!)

1. It is not suitable for dry skin types or if you like a dewy foundation finish.
2.  Incorrect use may result in difficulty in blending your foundation
3. You can only buy online if you don’t live in London and Leeds although I think they may have stores in other European Countries.

Overall Thoughts
I love this primer a lot and I am yet to try any other primer that gives me similar results as this. It’s such a huge relief not to be bothered about your shiny T-zone or foundation slipping off your face. Now that it’s Spring/Summer and it’s getting sunnier, I am so pleased that many of my beloved foundations can still be used and they won’t slip off.  That’s it folks!! Have you tried the Kiko Mat Base Primer?

Primark Haul (Video)

I never understand why people look down on Primark! It is one of my favourite stores to pop into; granted it may not have the best quality every time. Primark has really improved over the years especially with the quality and price (I have to add). One thing I really like Primark for is the wide range of items available there. They are also very good at creating dupes for many higher end and some high street stores like the Zara Mini City Bag look alike which I featured in a recent post. There are so many hidden gems in Primark and you just have to look and find the right one. It may be very chaotic on some days but it's always a nice store to pop into for basic items. I would stop rambling now and dive in. As always, I filmed the haul and it's on my channel on YouTube which you can find a direct link to the video here and you can watch it below if you wish. It would mean a lot to me if you subscribed here so you don't miss any updates.

I picked up two tops/blouses which look really lovely and very Spring appropriate. They both have lace detailing at the top which gives way to a pleated chiffon flowing body. I got them in Peach and Black. I always wear a nice camisole underneath because it is transparent/see-through. I also got some workout wear which is surprisingly good. I love H&M Sports wear and I thought they were the best affordable ones out there but the Primark ones are really good and slightly cheaper. I picked up a workout top, bottoms and a fleece jacket and the total cost for all three was just under £15 which is such a bargain. I also picked up some accessories including the Primark Mini City Bag (featured here) and two sunglasses which I adore. That's pretty much all I picked up and i hope you enjoyed this video. Have an amazing week ahead and see you in my next post...xx

NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer Dupes/Alternatives

If you are a regular reader of my blog, you would know that one of my favourite concealers is the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer. I have tried a couple of drug store offerings and alternatives but the truth is; none comes close. I know a few people have likened the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer as a dupe for the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer but I don’t quite agree although they share some similarities. They do have very similar packaging which I quite like. The three concealers featured today include: The NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer, the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer and the Revlon Colorstay Concealer. I like all three concealers and use them for various purposes. The Revlon and Maybelline are really good drug store concealers and if you are not ready to splash out yet on the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer, they are a good place to start.

Maybelline Fit Me Concealer//Link
The funny thing is this was the first drug store concealer I tried when I got into blogging. It’s not the exact one because the one I got was a different shade and it’s long finished. I really like the packaging because it is so slim and sleek complete with a doe foot applicator. I really like concealers that have doe foot applicators because it makes it really easy to apply and there is no need to deep your fingers/brushes into them. The shade range used to be a bit wider (I think it still is online) but I only find three shades in store which is a little frustrating. It has a light texture but it offers a nice coverage. It gets absorbed easily into the skin and it can be blended well. I picked up the shade 35 which is allegedly for Darker Skin but I only use it as a highlighter around the bridge of my nose, cupid bone and centre of my forehead. The other shade I got a while ago (Shade 30) was a better match to my skin and I used it to conceal my blemishes. I usually set it with a setting powder because it does look a little shiney/sheeny.

Revlon Color Stay Concealer//Link
I am pretty sure you may be a little sick of hearing me talk about this concealer because it has been already featured here (full review). I clearly love this concealer and it is one that is repurchased on default. I am a firm believer in sticking to products you know that work for you and you love. I still try new products because we human beings are insatiable by nature (hahahaha, yes, it’s true-not all the time though). I love the shade match to my skin and it just blends in really well. It also has a doe foot applicator for ease of application. Sadly, the shade range is quite limited and my shade, Deep Fonce, is the darkest shade available in the UK. It can be used for any type of concealing but I mainly use it for under my eyes and it does a spanking job. It does not crease or settle into fine lines and it works well with or without a setting powder although I am inclined to use one. The texture is very light and the coverage is at best light-medium which I don’t mind at all especially as I use it as an under eye concealer.

NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer//Link
I put off purchasing this concealer for a really long time until December last year. It is clearly one of the most hyped concealers in the blogging world and with good reason. I have a full review here so I won’t ramble too much. It offers a medium coverage and can be used as an under eye concealer, for blemishes and for highlighting depending on what shade you choose. As the name suggests, it has a very creamy texture which is such a dream to apply and I absolutely love it. The doe foot applicator makes it really easy to use and prevents waste which is helpful as it ‘s an expensive product. This is another product I know I would repurchase and I currently have two shades because I use one for my darker blemishes and the other for the odd blemish or to highlight some areas of my face.


Maybelline Fit Me

Revlon Colorstay
NARS Radiant Creamy
It has a slim sleek packaging which is portable
It has a cylindrical slim packaging which I love
It has a sturdy packaging which is still portable

Doe Foot Applicator


It feels very light and easy to blend/absorb

It is super light and easy to blend without hassles

It has a creamy texture which is a dream to blend and feels moisturising

Light to Medium Coverage
Light to Medium Coverage

A good Medium coverage that can be built
Shade Range

Limited but good for a drug store (I think they are about 5-6 shades)

Very limited and they are only 5 shades. My shade is the darkest.
Wide range of shades to choose from and they cater to a variety of skin tones
As an Under Eye Concealer

I have experienced creasing as an under eye concealer and it just does not look/feel right

My favourite under eye concealer as it has a light texture, absorbs well and does not crease or settle into fine lines
I find it a little too creamy for an under eye concealer but I have used it a few times. It may crease if not well blended

As a Highlighter

It is lovely as a highlighter because it has some slight sheen to it that draws light to the needed area (or maybe it’s the effect of the shade I have)

It is fine as a highlighter but I don’t use it often as one because it is a little close to my skin tone
It is actually really lovely as a highlighter especially if you are contouring your face and you want some areas to stand out. It is best to have a lighter shade for this.

As a Blemish concealer

Based on the previous shade I had, it did a good job at lightly concealing blemishes but it was not very long lasting on my combination/oily skin

This concealer does not do much at hiding/concealing my blemishes because it has quite a light coverage and my blemishes are quite dark

This is my absolute favourite for concealing blemishes and it is long lasting, offers a good coverage and a dream to blend
Best Use in my Opinion

Highlighter (based on shade chosen)
Under-eye concealer (based on its texture)
Blemish Concealer (based on it coverage and longevity)


Overall Thoughts
As mentioned earlier, I love these concealers and I use them for various purposes. I know I already mentioned that they are no absolute dupes for the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer (well none I have tried so far) but these drug store offerings are a good place to start. They are 1/3rd of the price of the NARS concealer. However, if you would like to treat yourself, I strongly recommend trying the NARS Radiant Concealer as it can be used in a variety of ways. That’s all folks. If you have any other dupes or requests for reviews, please leave them in the comment box. What’s your favourite concealer?
*Affiliate links may have been used above, Read my Full Disclaimer here.

Current Contour Makeup Products

I am no Makeup Artist or expert by any stretch of imagination but I love makeup and I am willing to learn more techniques every chance I have. I think I may have stumbled upon contouring and highlighting about a few years ago and I was intrigued. I watched countless YouTube videos to see how contouring and highlighting can change how a person looks. I have always admired how many girls on YouTube effortlessly create chiselled faces with a few products and flawless blending techniques. The truth is contouring and highlighting sometimes look best on print (magazines), in photos and in videos/films as opposed to real life. It's all about the angles and tricking the eyes but in real life, you sometimes can tell. Some people have perfected contouring and highlighting so well that they look flawless in real life (baby steps!!). Anyway, I started off with just contouring my cheekbone and nose using powder products only; in fact till date, I have only ever used Sleek Makeup Contour Kit and the Face Form to contour. Today’s  post is about what products I use to contour; I have christened them my Contour Combo Duo because they are all I use at the moment to contour my face. I won’t talk about highlighting today. That’s another topic for another day although I am aware they go hand in hand.

Sleek Contour Kit in Medium//Link 
I think this has to be the perfect kit for contouring especially for beginners. Sleek Makeup have another palette hybrid that combines a contour, highlighter and blush (the Face Form) which I have reviewed here. I can say hand on my heart I use the contour side everyday and you can see from the pictures how well loved it is. I decided to go back to an old favourite which is the Sleek Contour Kit. It comes in various shades: light, medium and dark and there is something for everyone. I have the medium and I think it is absolutely amazing on my complexion. I think I prefer the Sleek Contour Kit to the Face Form because it is more portable. Both the Contour Kit and Face Form essentially contain the same products except for the blush which the Face Form has. Anyway, I use the contour side to give some definition to my face. I usually start out with my cheek bones (from my ears) and then do a "3" shape around my temples and jaw line. I usually just concentrate most times on my cheekbones and I love to use the Real Techniques Contour Brush and recently, the Real Techniques Duo Fibre Contour Brush which I love. When I have a full face of foundation and I am going all out, I contour my nose which I think is even easier to do than my cheek bones but I don't do it often. I use a smaller brush for this and I start from near where my eyebrows begin all the way to the sides of my nose for a slimmer shape. I think I may do a tutorial soon (fingers crossed).The Sleek Contour Kit is very well pigmented and I always start with very light strokes and I blend in before building it up. It's just perfect. If you don't know what product to start contouring with I highly recommend this. 

Black Opal True Colour Foundation Stick in Suede Mocha// Link
I've noticed that quite a few YouTube Beauty Gurus have been using stick foundations to contour  (I think I may have noticed a few years ago) and it gives a more natural finish. However, I never even considered buying one because I was satisfied with the Sleek Contour Kit. Then, NARS launched their NARS Multiples which I lusted after for a while but gave up my fantasy because it was way too pricey at £30. I could not justify buying a product so expensive when I was not even sure how it would look on me or how I could effectively use it. This all changed when I watched the beautiful Jennifer from Jennifer Olae Makeup talk about the Black Opal True Colour Foundation Stick in Suede Mocha. She had used it several times in tutorials on her YouTube Channel so the haunt for this product began. I am not new to Black Opal foundation sticks at all because my Mum uses them frequently when she is not using her Fashion Fair Foundation.  It is a little difficult to get Black Opal here in the UK but if you check Afro Hair and Beauty Salons and some Asian ones, you would find them. I got mine in my local Hair and Beauty Salon where I buy all things hair and it was only £6.99. I finally found it on Amazon but it was £10.49 which is a little crazy; it makes me want to buy a few back ups from my Hair and Beauty Supply Store.

Black Opal offers a wide range of shades for this foundation stick but I got one of the darkest shades- Suede Mocha because it appears as a lovely contour against my complexion. I find that using a foundation stick or cream contour gives a more natural contour which looks more flattering than a powder contour. I like how easy it is to blend in texture my foundation/concealer. With this method, you need to ensure you blend really well (it is the absolute key for many makeup techniques). I find that I am getting better with practise although the Black Opal Foundation Stick is ever so easy to work with. I am absolutely in love with it and I think I may actually get a shade closer to my skin tone so I can use it as a concealer. I just apply it really lightly (it is very pigmented) on my cheekbones starting from my ears. I use it directly from the tube and I think it is best that way and gives me the best finish. It applies like a dream and it is really soft. It does not drag against my skin and it also feels light on application and afterwards. It blends really well once I buff it in with a brush and I cannot think of anything I hate about it.

How I use both of them
Before now, I used one or the other but I recently started using both of them and I think it looks much better and longer lasting. I start out with the Black Opal True Colour Foundation and swipe lightly on the areas I wish to contour (cheek bones, jawline, temples, etc). Then, I do some blending in with my brushes so it does not look crazy. Then, I lightly sweep my contour brush across the Sleek Contour Kit to further define my cheek bones and to also set the Black Opal contour. They both go so well like if they were made for each other which is why I christened them my Contouring Combo Duo. I love the results and I will post a picture of how it looks soon. (I forgot to take a nice picture)

I am currently pleased with my routine although I am open to try new products. These two products go so well and I particularly love that they were so inexpensive. Both of them cost less than £15 which is really incredible. I know they will last me a long while. The Sleek Contour Kit retails for £6.49 and you can get it the drug store. I have noticed it is quite difficult to find these babies in-store in Boots and Superdrug and I have no idea what they are playing at. You can find it online though; thank goodness for that. As mentioned, Black Opal True Colour Foundation Sticks are not sold in the drug store here in the UK but you can find them in Afro Hair and Beauty Salons and online on Amazon. It retails for £6.99. If you live in Nigeria, you can buy directly from Kuddy Cosmetics who are one of the distributors in Nigeria so you can be rest assured it is a genuine product. I believe it retails from N1300.

Overall Thoughts
If you can’t afford the NARS Multiple, I suggest trying out the Black Opal True Colour Foundation Sticks as I am guessing they are very similar. I have not tried the NARS version but they look really similar from what I have seen in pictures and videos.  If you also can’t afford the Bobbi Brown Foundation Stick (review here), I also recommend trying one of these babies out for a quarter of the price. As for the Sleek Contour Kit, I believe they are one of the best drug store contour kits here in the UK (I know it's the Cover Girl Bronzer in the US). I have not tried anything else that comes close to its perfection. That’s pretty much my lovely duo. What are your favourite Contour products?
*Affiliate links may have been used above, Read my Full Disclaimer here.


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