Tuesday, 22 August 2017

The Ordinary skincare review

So this post has been in the works for a long time, but like with any skincare post, I wanted to give a good amount of time for my skin to see the results. 

If you don't know about The Ordinary by now you've pretty much been living in a cave. Created by DECIEM, The Ordinary is a brand which creates low budget skincare products catered towards a range of skin needs. Most products are less than £10 which is amazing considering other brands use the same ingredients with a much higher cost. Being the budget-beauty girl I am, I put a few to the test and here are my thoughts, product by product:

For reference, my skin type is oily/acne prone

Used for: dark marks/uneven skintone
Thoughts: I actually really loved this product, I definitely noticed a gradual improvement in old acne marks on my face (I say 'loved' because I finished it 2 weeks ago!). This is definitely one I need to repurchase, doesn't dry my skin out, perf. 
Used for: Blemishes
Thoughts: It hasn't really done much, to be honest. Perhaps it was the added stress of my final uni exams which made me break out even more, but even more recently hasn't done anything in terms of getting rid of breakouts. Disappointing, especially as it was the product I was most excited about.

Used for: superficial skin peel
Thoughts: I definitely went heavy-handed with this at the start which I regret, my skin became so dried out. I reduced the amount I used (as recommended on the bottle) and my skin has gotten used to it, and when I remember to use it consistently it actually does help to gradually reduce hyperpigmentation. It's a yes from me!

Used for: brightening 
Thoughts: it's quite thick and hard to blend, but a little goes a long way. I'm not too sure whether it does what it says, but that may be down to me using a little longer since this is the most recent product I've consistently used. 

Used for: blemishes

Thoughts: I wish I purchased this before I got the Niacinamide acid because this stuff WORKS. The bottle is small, but mighty. A tiny dab on a spot and this works really fast at reducing redness and inflammation, it isn't drying on my skin either. One thing I would say is that it may cause some hyperpigmentation if used too much so use lightly. It's still something I bring out whenever I need it. 

Used for: reducing pigmentation/ puffiness 
Thoughts: I LOVE this stuff - when I remember to use it consistently I can definitely notice a visible difference in my dark circles. Sure, I've accepted that the majority of it is hereditary (unfortunately) but on the days when I'm looking extra tired, this does the job. I've been recommending this to friends, it's that good.

Have you tried The Ordinary skincare? What are your favourite products?

Zahra D x


Tuesday, 8 August 2017

How to plan a trip to Versailles

It's been a long time since I've been on holiday, so my older sister & I decided to plan a trip to head to Paris after my graduation this summer. If you follow me on Instagram (@diaryofadeera) you'll be seeing a bunch of my posts on my trip. We had so much planned for the 5 days we'd be in Paris, and one was definitely to head to Versailles.

If you're heading to Paris for your holiday this summer you'd be mad not to spend a day in the wonderful palace of Versailles. Just past the outskirts of Paris, Versailles is steeped in a rich history guaranteed to make you think about the place long after you visit. We definitely learned a lot throughout our trip & its planning, so I thought I'd sum up a few things to share with you guys if you ever plan to go there.

Buy tickets in advance
We realised how lucky we were to buy ours in advance when we saw the vast line outside of the palace to enter. You don't want to spend your precious time in France lining up, so make the smart choice.

Go early
That's right - even if you've bought your tickets in advance, heading out there early is the best way to go, especially if you're having to travel from Paris to Versailles. We battled quite big groups in some of the rooms of the palace during peak hours which made photo opportunities a little difficult (especially in the hall of mirrors).

Wear comfortable shoes
I cannot stress this enough. You'll end up hating yourself if you head out in the prettiest heels and end up not being able to stand after 2 hours. Especially since the estate is pretty vast, there's a lot of walking involved so prepare yourself!

Get an audio guide
While having your own personal tour guide might seem like the best way to get the most out of this experience, it may not be the way for you - especially if you want to go at your own pace in admiring the beauty of Versailles. The maps we were provided with had amazing patented technology which required a simple tap of our little device on each part of the map to tell us the history behind it all - pretty great especially since it's at a reduced price. It's definitely worth it!

Take advantage of the mini train
One of the best bargains of Versailles if your ticket also includes a tour of the gardens is to take advantage of Versailles' 'hop on, hop off' mini trains which circulate the grounds. For around 7 Euros you can explore whichever parts of the gardens you wish with easy transportation - especially as the gardens are pretty big! Keep in mind that they stop running at 5 pm.

Don't stress out if you can't see everything
It's virtually impossible to explore every part of the estate in just one day. Our tickets included tours of both the palace and the gardens, but there were definitely parts that we didn't manage to see (Marie Antoinette's estate was sadly closed when we headed there!) so don't stress yourself out. It's just another excuse to head out another time, and if you have an audio guide you can still hear about it even if you can't go there yourself.

I hope this helped you out, I can't wait to bring more posts to you all from my holiday, as well as a post on graduating which should hopefully come soon.

Keep it real,

Zahra D x 
© Diary of a Deera

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