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Whether you’re a beauty novice or a confirmed fashionista, this topic is for consulting Mumsnetters on all things style-related. Plus, check out our Swears By page for the inside track on the next Mumsnet must-have.

S & B review 2016

(33 Posts)
OldJoseph Fri 30-Dec-16 18:15:49

What have you discovered this year? Any HG products / retailers or rediscoveries of old favourites?

On the flip side what have been your 'why oh why oh why did I buy that?' moments?

For me I bought Laura Geller balance 'n' brighten in medium and have been pleased with the result (I was worried it would be too dark). I also love Natural collection mascara and MUR eye pallets. Finally I've bought some Lily Lolo make up brushes and have been really pleased with them.

Clothes wise Jaeger outlet has been great especially with their 40% off flash sales and I've had more success with buying from ebay (I check details and ask for measurements if not given).

My 'why oh why oh why did I bother with that?' was with Philip Kingsley elasticizer, it's not even for my hair type needless to say it did nothing for my hair. Will donate to dsis if she's interested.

I'm not buying anything makeup wise next year (unless I run out of said product) and I'll be interested to see how much stuff I still have left after a year of wearing make up every day.

What are your highs and lows S&B wise for 2016?

OhStuffingBalls Fri 30-Dec-16 19:48:55


- Bamboo Volumizing Liquid Powder for adding volume to my thick, straight hair
- H&M shaping high waisted skinny jeans. Bargainous, flattering and wash really well.
- 4160 Tuesdays perfume. Total revelation.
- Rediscoverig th delights of Bodyshop after 30 years and years. Love their camomile cleansing butter, wild atlas rose bod lotion & cheek and lip stain among others things.

Haven't been any real lows this year, happily. I tightened my belt big time on beauty products and make-up and haven't missed my old high end and/or impulse buys at all.

OldJoseph Fri 30-Dec-16 20:02:52

Ooooh Bamboo volumizing liquid powder sounds interesting, I'll have to have a look.

Costacoffeeplease Fri 30-Dec-16 20:12:07

I got a small Percy & Reed no oil oil in the summer m&s beauty box and it's fab, I've already repurchased and recommended it to friends, who also love it

In their beauty advent calendar I really liked the skyn eye cream, and have repurchased that already

Also tried Benefit They're Real mascara for the first time recently and been impressed

I've been a fan of balance n brighten for a few years now, and have quite a stash of them so I never run out!

Kennington Fri 30-Dec-16 20:17:28

Slimming down wardrobe and wearing a uniform has been nice (black skinnies; silk shirts and t shirts and merino wool tops with black ankle boots - for work and home).
The skin care boards with botemp, hollin etc who know what they are doing - I now never wear foundation and just a touch of make up.
Best products: grapeseed oil; lanolips; Vichy salicyclic acid; glow maximiser
Best shop: other stories!

Lows: none, have saved a lot of cash by only buying a few bits now

LittleOyster Fri 30-Dec-16 21:06:56

A high for me has been the launch of The Ordinary. In particular, the Vitamin C 23% (which gets slagged off a lot on here for being grainy/stingy) has been brilliant. A couple of weeks ago I injured my face falling off my bike and the cuts healed completely in about four days - if it can do that for actual wounds, imagine what it's doing for my fine lines and sun damage!! And only £4.90!

Splashing out on the Nars Deepthroat brush was, if not a low point, then a bit 'meh'. I have been alternating it with my (much) cheaper blushes for many months now, and I cannot detect the smallest difference in quality to justify the price.

LadyOfTheCanyon Fri 30-Dec-16 21:29:32

This year I pared everything down. There have been things I use again and again so this year I just used everything else up and repurchased the few things that actually work and hopefully will stick to. None of it is cheap but I use every last drop. They are:
Elemis cleansing balm
Sunday Riley Good Genes
Vichy Aqualia serum
Pixi glow tonic
Elemis pro collagen marine cream
Sisley black rose oil
Alpha H liquid gold
Crest white strips
Eyelure brow dye
James Read express tan
Glamglow original formula

My meh stuff was sunday Riley Artemis oil, Origins Ginzing moisturiser, all deodorants that aren't Mitchum roll on, everything I bought from Nuxe ( sorry not sorry) and pretty much all make up that I haven't tried and tested over the last five years. I've got a drawer full of lipsticks that don't suit me. confused

Judydreamsofhorses Fri 30-Dec-16 21:37:51

Highs for me:

Hourglass Diffused Light powder
The Hush ruched skirt - totally removed from my usual style, but I have worn it so, so much
Sunday Riley Ceramic Slip cleanser
MAC False Lashes mascara


The lipsticks (many) I bought chasing the perfect orange/red. I'm still not sure I got there, but MAC Lady Danger is close enough for now.

Floisme Sat 31-Dec-16 10:41:43

Realising I can still wear vintage.
Leather, arse-kicking coat (vintage).
Cutler and Gross specs - £££ but on my face every waking moment.
Harris tweed jacket - Miss Marple is my latest icon.
Clarks silvery grey brogues.
Burts Bees tinted lip balm - at last, lip colour without feeling like a little girl okaying with mum's make up.

Why oh why?:
Was I such an arse about Cos? - Coolest clothes I've seen in a long time.
Did I fall for the Micellar water hype? Nearly set my face on fire.

OldJoseph Sat 31-Dec-16 15:49:09

Thanks for your replies, I've enjoyed reading them. The Ordinary is on my list to try (when other things have run out).

I don't think I've found a better tinted lip balm than Burt Bees, but I keep looking.

RemusLupinsChristmasMovie Sat 31-Dec-16 15:54:46

Best buy - make up = Benefit Dandelion. It makes my super-pale skin look far less corpse-like. Agree with Flo that Burts Bees lipbalm is bloody brilliant too.

Best buy - clothes/accessories = Muji watch, more leather Converse, DMs

RemusLupinsChristmasMovie Sat 31-Dec-16 15:55:42

Lows - putting weight on due to medication and having to give lots of lovely dresses to the charity shop. sad

Floisme Sat 31-Dec-16 16:40:21

Sorry to hear that Remus. It's a bastard when your body takes on a life of its own.

(Sounds like a new leather jacket might be in order.)

MarzipanPiggy Sat 31-Dec-16 16:45:25


- Dior mascara and mascara primer
- Balayage highlighting

Why oh why?

- Did Oasis stop doing my beloved stretchy skinny cara jeans? If anyone can recommend a similar (better??) product I'd be delighted!

RemusLupinsChristmasMovie Sat 31-Dec-16 16:47:53

Would rather be a bit fatter and feeling better though, Flo - silver lining! Can't really justify another leather jacket right now but will keep my eye open for later in the year.

If anybody has bought brilliant non-fading black skinnies as one of their best buys this year, please share!

GiddyGiddyGoat Sat 31-Dec-16 16:58:18

Flo, if you like Burt's Bees lip balm you might love this - lanolins tinted lip balm - one of my best discoveries in 2016 - here I wear this one all the time - also comes in Rhubarb - which is natural / pink.

GiddyGiddyGoat Sat 31-Dec-16 16:59:08


SapphireSeptember Sat 31-Dec-16 23:18:39

Highs, I found some amazing dresses in Bon Marche of all places, that I've received many compliments on, (swishy evening type things, that I wear with combat boots, denim jacket and spiky dog collar.) Also buying my first pair of combat boots this year, I've wanted some since I was 15, it only took me 12 years! Finally getting my hands on NYX cosmetics, after years of drooling over the goodies they get in the US. And then there are the two dresses that arrived today from Hearts & Roses London that are stunning! And chokers coming back into fashion so I can pick up lovely things on the cheap. And more unusual lipstick colours becoming mainstream. Buying my most expensive single make up item to date, MAC's Midnight Troll, for the princely sum of £17! (Some of you might laugh at me for that!) It felt awesome though!

Lows, clearing out my make up stash. I was ruthless but it didn't hurt! Opening a bottle of Nails Inc polish to find the brush missing, (luckily I found it on Amazon so could order a replacement, though it wasn't where I got it from originally.) Dove discontinuing my favourite hair conditioner, (boo!) The odd thing I've picked up in charity shops that just didn't look good on me when I got them home. And still, at the age of 27/28, getting stupid comments from people because of the way I dress. It's not like I haven't heard it all already for half my life!

SimplyNigella Sun 01-Jan-17 07:06:35

Great thread!

- Accepting that with a 2 year old DS neither my body nor my lifestyle are the same as they were and embracing a new style of casual dressing (whilst dressing up more for work to counter it)
- Creating a Pinterest board with items in my wardrobe and ideas for how to wear them, which stops me wearing the same outfit again and again. Remus has great Pinterest boards to stalk follow also
- Sarah Chapman Overnight Facial and Facialift massager, pricey but fab
- Superdrug Micellar Oil cleanser- super cheap but does as good a job for me as Eve Lom cleanser
- Finery and & Other Stories have expanded my online shopping repertoire
- Tight lining making my eyes look bigger, not smaller as I read in J17 magazine 20 odd years ago

- Still not shedding the 2 stone that I need to. I think I need to reduce my stress levels as most of my eating is emotional.
- Having to cull many of my shoes as they still don't fit nearly 3 years post-DS (stupid spreading pregnancy feet)

Strawclutching Sun 01-Jan-17 07:26:27


The mumsnet how to look elegant thread. Took it onboard. Totally changed my wardrobe.

Got my colours done. Realised in my late teens/early twenties I had it spot on. Then lost my confidence. Should have just suck with my instincts.

Lost 4stone.

Ditched Clinique moisturiser for Oil of Olay which I love.


No 7 foundation. Everyone said it was great. I hated it and looked like an umpa lumpa.

Mac pastel palette. Love the colours but the quality isn't great.

niminypiminy Sun 01-Jan-17 09:45:49


Dyeing my hair back to its natural grey after a few years of bleaching it. The bleach was fun while it lasted but the grey is more flattering and freeing.
Nip and Fab pads. Very good indeed!
My red and pink neoprene coat that I made (not the best photo of it, but gives the general idea).
Turning a tent-like second-hand Marimekko dress into a lovely, flattering and useful dress by cutting it up and re-sewing.
Revlon Really Red lipstick.

Having to buy a whole new work wardrobe, some of which was really, really expensive.
Pastel toners on bleached hair - went bright blue. Was fun for a week or so then looked awful.

Floisme Sun 01-Jan-17 10:53:31

Good to hear, Remus

Giddy thanks, I will try it, especially as it has a sunscreen. If it tasted of rhubarb too that would be awesome!

niminy I love your coat and it must be so satisfying to wear something you've made yourself. I can feel a resolution coming on (but I'd have to start small)...

PrancerForHoney Sun 01-Jan-17 10:57:40

Pixie boots from Dune and my Hush ruched skirt are my two favourite buys of the year thanks to you lovely people on here. fsmile

BestIsWest Sun 01-Jan-17 11:04:47

Don't M&S do non fading black skinnies Remus? I have indigo ones which haven't faded at all. Also, DS buys his from Tesco of all places and he swears they are the best for staying black. I wonder if they do a women's equivalent?

PS glad to hear you are feeling better.

Highs for me.

Going shorter and darker hair wise.
M&S cashmere scarf bought in last Jan's Sale which I wore almost every day. Should have bought another this year.
Neal's yard aromatic body butter - not only transformed my scaly legs but the smell helps me sleep.

Realising I can't wear even the slightest of heels. An inch is my maximum.

GiddyGiddyGoat Sun 01-Jan-17 11:50:41

Nigella - if it's not too late don't cull the shoes until you've lost the weight! My feet shrunk again after I shed the flab and I could wear my favourite shoes again after years of them sitting at the back of my wardrobe - my feet grew a whole size after being pregnant with ds1!

Niminy, that coat is fab! Love red and pink together - and love neoprene. You clever thing!

Another good thing for me was a very different haircut after years of basically the same thing - it's given me a different look - in a good way.

Resolution for 2017 - buy less and use what I have more.

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