Friday, 29 June 2012

My summer handbag essentials

Please don’t laugh as I've been waiting for a nice hot, sunny and summery day to  write about this but the weather hasn't been playing balls.  Then I thought I could wait for the first official day of  Summer (was it 21 June?) but it tipped it down on that day  like you wouldn't believe. This morning, it was cloudy but  I was greeted with the most delightful hot breeze, it is so rare that we have warm winds in this country so I thought  this is it: perfect time to share with you my summer handbag  essentials. Most of you will hate the weather we had today and will  find it 'stuffy, close, sticky' but I love it: it reminds me of the tropics where I spent the first 18 years of my life, of the greenhouse my mum keeps her orchids in and it just puts a big ‘papaya slice’ grin on my face.


On a sunny hot day, in England, and if there is a possibility that I  spend a little bit of time outside (not full on sunbathing for hours)  this is what I would take in my handbag.


I'll take a cheap pair of sunglasses (1). These are from  BHS and cost me £8 if my memory is correct. I don't really  know if these suit me to be honest, so they gravitate  between my handbag, my eyes when it's very sunny and my  head as a hair accessory.


Having worn had long hair pretty much all my life, I am  going nowhere without hair accessories. You'll have to  excuse me as I don't remember all the prices but I can tell  you with confidence that my cute little butterfly claw (2) is from Superdrug and that it is probably my most repurchased hair  accessory together with this pretty basic 'wooden' effect hair claw (4) from Claire's Accessories. I actually find it quite  difficult to find a good hair claw which keep my hair in  place. Most of the hair claws these days have got some  stupid long winded teeth while I find that short straight  and simple teeth, like the basic hair claws you'd have at  the hairdressers' work best for me. I go through those mini  claws from Claire's Accessories (3) so fast as they're so  small, I spend my time losing them or stepping on them with  my big wedges. But they are the best thing for keeping my  side fringe out of the way. Love love love them!


Come rain or sunshine, winter or summer, anytime of the ...  month, I will, without a fail have some tampons (6) in my  handbag. My 'magic day' app on my phone is there to remind  me when the pixies come to visit me but I always like to  have some with me for peace of mind and just in case mother  nature decides to play tricks with me. Those bright green  sweetie-like wrappers are actually the Tampax Compak*  (£3.15). According to a recent survey from Tampax  a third of women voted tampons as a vital  accessory in their handbags. Apart from a purse, phone and  keys half of the women surveyed revealed their handbags  always contain makeup, followed by tampons (38%), a diary  (30%), and, to keep hunger pangs at bay, food or sweets  (28%).

I must share with you some other bits of the survey  which made me feel good about myself and the amount of stuff I  carry around with me.
'Women spend 858 hours of their life searching through  their handbag, rummage for items buried away into their  handbags an average time of 4.8 times a day, and the  average handbag weighs around 3.5lbs' (is that 7 kilos?  OMG!!). I think I might be rummaging through my handbag more  often than that, but there is no way that my handbag weighs  that much :)

I will probably never be able to forget the boots marketing campaign on Soltan, years ago, with those pretty and young models covered with age spots. Boots really sold their 5 stars UVA protection to me (UVA rays are the ones responsible for ageing, the UVB for browning and ... burning) so my conscience feels better when I have a broad spectrum of sun protection and when I use Soltan. My purse also feels good as Soltan is usually on offer during the summer months. I had to buy a new one (5) before my week end in Amsterdam and it was at half price (£4.49).

The smell is not too overpowering, it doesn't leave me with a white cast after application, and it absorbs quite quickly. I have yet to test it thoroughly used in conjunction of a foundation. They say that once opened, a tube of sun cream doesn't last long so I don't feel guilty to skip carrying a normal moisturiser for my poor elbows and hands and use the Soltan as a sun protection and moisturiser on the go even for small parts of the body.  For the sake of this post, I wanted to re watch the advert,  and guess what, it *stills* sends shivers down my spine.


Ideally, it would be the Dove 'pomegranate' or the 'lemon'  deodorant/anti perspirant which I would love to carry around with me, as I  just can't get enough of those deodorants but they don't do  the miniature of these 'flavours'. The cucumber deodorant (7) does the  job more than adequately though and it doubles up as a foot spray.


Item 8 has a special space in my heart. It's a miniature  coconut body mist from Yves Rocher (£5) and I like to save it  for summer days and it makes me feel on holiday even when I  am going no further than my local park. While people have Caudalie, Bioderma and other poncy French skincare  on their shopping lists whenever they go to France, I never  come back from France without a trip to Yves Rocher and a  good supply of mini coconut body mist. You thought the  Bodyshop coconut stuff smelt good, you gotta try the Yves  Rocher one!

It's my closest colleague who introduced me to item no.9.  For 89p at half price or you get 2 packs of eye  makeup remover pads which are just perfect to correct  makeup mishaps during the day, when you have rubbed your  eyes forgetting you had eyeliner on and so on.

You could easily get some cheaper face and hand wipes than this 99p little pack of 10 H&M (item no.10 on the photo above) but you'd be hard to find a  pack with a cuter packaging and one which smells of  vanilla. If I were a little more organised, I'd keep a  normal size pack of wipes and put it in my handbag when there's only 10% left, but that would be way too organised and boring, no?

I am a little bit shy at sharing with you what I  carry  around with me in terms of beauty products. I actually  carry very little and I hope you will still consider me as  a beauty blogger a little bit.


I've never really been a lip  person, I will carry more on a night out, but during the  day, I can't get enough of Collection 2000 cream Puff  powder puff (swatched and reviewed in full here). Lasting power is  not very good at all, but the colour, the feel on your  lips, and the smell is to die for and makes it one of my  ultimate favourite lip products.

I am as surprised as you to find that I carry a lip balm  (16) in my handbag. To tell you the truth, it's this very  lip balm, Sugar Lips* (£2) from MUA which converted me to  lip balms. In short, my lips are moisturised without being  sticky, the smell again is divine, and I get excited like a  big kid to pull out this giant sweetie out of my bag. (swatched and reviewed in full here)

The rest of my beauty products is not very exciting really:  a very inexpensive black eyeliner. The one you see (13) is from  2true and only costs 1.99. The black eyeliner one from  Collection 2000 is better really but this is the one I had  knocking about at the time of the photo. Even more  important than my little mirror (15), and purely for peace of mind I  like to carry around a small pot of eylure eyelash glue (12). I  usually keep it in my actual purse or back pocket as in  there is no chance i'll find amongst all my crap, if I  chuck it straight into my handbag.


Last but not least, I will have a box of sweeteners with  me, a bottle of tabasco to liven up a burger or a bland  soup at work, and a small purse (the one you see is quite recent actually, I got it from Claire's Accessories) big enough to carry my 3 essential cards (debit card, superdrug beauty card and  boots advantage card) and the change for a tenner. Now, many a times I've had some  mishaps with my bottle of tabasco whereby I've not closed  the cap properly and it leaked everywhere. Since then,  tampons are lodged in back 'money' pocket of handbag and  tabasco is wrapped in lame carrier bag, which I didn’t photograph.

So that's it. These are my summer handbag essentials. I  hope you haven't found the contents too boring and that my  small amount of makeup and my budget items didn't turn you off.

Do you carry around similar things?
What are your summer handbag essentials?

disclaimer: items marked with asterisk were provided for review purposes at some point in the past.


LilyLipstick said...

Cute handbag! I love the mini Soltan suncreams for taking out and about with me and also use that Yves Rocher perfume in the summer - it smells so sweet and makes me think of holidays. x

Perdita said...

I always carry my 'handbag' make up bag, one of those brushes that 'pops out' and has a mirror in it (Superdrug), clear sun spray, bobby pins, notepad and pen, hat, plasters and of course tampax/bodyform ... I have a bit of a Mary Poppins handbag FULL of anything anyone could need!

Hazy Fairyland said...

when I read posts like this I feel totally unworthy of woman kind LOL. I would never be able to carry all this around all day. Kudos to you ma cherie!

Powdered Almond said...

Aw your bag is cute. I keep pretty similar stuff in mine, plus tissues, nail file, phone, accidentaly four or five lipsticks (I just keep adding them, they're all the same colour too!) But I don't carry round tabasco sauce! I love that you do that. x

missy_ellie_uk said...

I LOVE that you carry tabasco sauce around with you!

I remember that Soltan campaign too, it was a really powerful one.

Annette said...

Thanks for giving Yves Rocher a mention. You're so right. Great affordable brand. I like their Verveine Eau FraƮche for summer - clean, fresh and lemony:-)

Anonymous said...

I love having a snoop through some else's beauty products. And your the first person I've ever come across who has tabasco sauce in their stash...LOL!

Great post!

Ali x

Strawberry Blonde said...

I love that you carry Tabasco sauce you crazy kid! mwah xx

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