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10 Fabulous Beauty Gifts for Every Budget: The Hey Pretty Edit

Best Beauty Gift Ideas on Hey Pretty Beauty Blog (Holidays 2017)

Tis the season, Pretties! Sandra here, and we’re definitely in the middle of December here in Switzerland… it’s snowing outside as I write! I love this time of year, when your after-work beer gets replaced with a steaming cup of Glühwein at a Christmas Market near you. The combination of sticky-sweet alcohol, fairy lights and bad Christmas music can, on occasion, lead up to some maudlin moments (or am I the only one?) and weird gift shopping experiences.

That’s why I think Christmas Markets like the ones we have here in Europe are a pretty dangerous thing: Get distracted for a second, and BAM! you’ve already bought tool kit made of chocolate, two oil-diffusing lamps and five of those incredibly calming (yet really ugly) liquid sand pictures

To make sure that gift-giving-excitement doesn’t get the best of you, we’re going to help you make good decisions with these beautiful and useful beauty gift ideas!

The Best Beauty Gifts for 2017 (Hey Pretty)

1. Vichy Slow Âge Gift Set, approx. US$ 40.00

Vichy Xmas 2017: Slow Age Gift Set (Beauty Gifts on Hey Pretty)

I know, I know… Vichy isn’t the sexiest beauty brand out there… but today isn’t about sexy gift ideas, but useful ones! Having said that: This gift box contains Vichy’s bestselling Slow Age Moisturizer, which protects your skin from premature signs of aging with an SPF 30, anti-oxidants and thermal water AND a miniature of Minéral 89, the clever hydration booster that you can use underneath the moisturizer. Smooth, plump skin at a great price!

2. Giorgio Armani Holiday Color Collection Face & Eye Makeup Palette, approx. US$100.00

Giorgio Armani Holiday Color Collection 2017 Make-Up Palette (Best Beauty Gifts on Hey Pretty)

Wait, did someone say «sexy»? Gotta go with Giorgio Armani! The key piece of 2017’s Holiday Limited Edition is a palette for face and eyes, which is not only super practical, but also saves up a lot of space in your make-up kit and therefore is


On the bottom level of the compact, there are two shades of the (lovely) Maestro Fusion Makeup Foundation, along with a Luminous Silk Compact Powder. The upper level is a bit more exciting, with ten new shades of eyes shadow, of which half are matte, the other half shimmery. In all honesty, this is a really well thought-out and luxurious product! Steffi, this would be a fabulous Christmas bonus!

3. L’Occitane Luxury Travel Treasures, US$ 40.00

L'Occitane Luxury Travel Treasures (Best Beauty Gifts 2017 by Hey Pretty)

L’Occitane, the beautiful skincare brand from Provence always has a huge selection of gift sets in every size and price range. This gift set is a great present for travellers, as the pretty canvas pouch contains nine travel-sized (and luxe) containers of L’Occitane’s bestsellers. Among others, there’s the delicious Almond Shower Oil, the Verbena Body Lotion and Shea Butter Hand and Foot creams. Très chic!

4. Yves Saint Laurent Dazzling Lights Multi-Use Makeup Palette, US$ 95.00

YSL Beauty Dazzling Lights Make Up Palette (The Very Best Beauty Gifts 2017 on Hey Pretty Beauty Blog)

For the more, um… luxury-oriented amongst us, Yves Saint Laurent is always a go-to for festive gifts. This palette is pretty much made to be shown off (and carried around in your party clutch), both to creative a complete festive make-up, but also for touch-ups during your glamorous nights of partying. It contains four eye shadows, two shades of lipstick and a lovely, shimmery blush.

As a make-up artist, I can confirm that these shades are super-versatile and can be used both for a daytime and a night look.

As if you needed an excuse to buy this for yourself, tee hee!

5. By Terry Preciosity Baume de Rose Duo Gift Set Collection, approx. US$ 50.00

By Terry Preciosity Baume de Rose Duo (Holidays 2017, Best Beauty Gift Ideas on Hey Pretty)

This festive little gift contains two of French skincare brand By Terry’s bestselling Baume de Rose products – the hand cream and a shiny, moisturizing lip gloss. A great present for rose fans!

By the way: Gifts like these are always a great way to treat yourself, and to discover new brands!

Another good example of my rationalizing?

6. Estée Lauder Blockbuster, approx. US$ 80.00 (Europe exclusive)

Estée Lauder Blockbuster 2017 Holiday Set (Gorgeous Beauty Gifts 2017 on Hey Pretty)

Ahhh, this «Blockbuster» collection is always a treat! Estée Lauder’s yearly «super-treat» contains miniatures and special editions of a huge range of make-up and skincare products… this year’s version contains two eye shadow palettes, a blush palette, two lipsticks, one mascara, an eye make-up remover, the Advanced Night Repair Serum and a miniature of the Revitalizing Supreme+ Cream.

The well-made travel case is pretty chic, and even if the products inside aren’t quite as luxuriously packaged as the standard Estée Lauder products, it’s a wonderful gift.

(check out our Instagram for a real-life look at the contents)!

Sadly, the Blockbuster seems to be a European exclusive, and in the UK, it’s only available as a purchase-with-purchase, if you know what I mean!

7. Acqua di Parma Coffret La Collezione, approx. US$ 130.00

Aqua di Parma Coffret La Collezione 2017 (Best Beauty Gifts for Him and Her on Hey Pretty)

You really can’t go wrong with Acqua di Parma: These fresh, natural colognes are real people-pleasers, and the bottles are beautifully made. This gift set is available in select stores, containing three 30ml sizes of Bergamotto di Calabria, Arancia di Capri and Fico di Amalfi, and online, you can even pick and choose your three Acqua di Parma favorites!

The only downside is that you may have to follow up with a trip to Italy, because these scents will definitely stimulate your wanderlust!

8. NARS x Man Ray Love Triangles Set, approx. US$ 35.00 (at [email protected])


NARS Man Ray Holiday 2017: Love Triangle Gift Set (Hey Pretty Best Beauty Gift Ideas)

NARS just can do no wrong with their limited edition gifts! This time, photographer Man Ray was the inspiration for the entire Holiday collection, and this set here is the perfect present for the cultured beauty lover (which is ALL OF US). This decorative little set contains two NARS classics in miniature formats: One is the Hot Sand Blush in Peach Champagne, and the other is Rita Audacious Lipstick in Scarlet. A fab color combo for the holidays, and it can be found at various department stores.

9. Cire Trudon Classic Scented Candle Abd El Kader, approx. US$ 95.00

Best Beauty Gift Ideas 2017: Cire Trudon Scented Candle «Abd El Kader» (Hey Pretty Beauty Blog)

I’m not gonna lie, it’s hard to find a «practical» angle here… but Cire Trudon’s scented candles are such a beautiful, BEAUTIFUL gift that I simply had to include one in my roundup! A few years back, I worked at the Zurich department store Jelmoli and sniffed each one of their candles a thousand times and pictured myself (the poor student) nonchalantly buying one and actually lighting it at home…

That hasn’t happened (yet!), but I can guarantee you: If it’s going to be a scented candle, it’s gotta be Cire Trudon! Their limited Holiday editions are always lovely, but my favorite by far is still «Abd El Kader», which smells gorgeously of fresh mint leaves. Ahhhh…

10. Pai The Landmark Collection, approx. US$ 45.00

Pai Skincare The Landmark Collection (the best beauty gifts 2017), Review on Hey Pretty

Last but not least, I just had to include something for my fellow organic beauty lovers (I have a reputation to uphold, after all). Pai is a great brand from the UK that I’ve been testing my way through for the past few years, and I really liked everything I’ve tried. What’s more, the products are formulated for even the most sensitive of skins.

They also have some lovely gifts this year, inspired by Pai’s hometown of London, and this one here contains an entire skincare routine: The Camelia & Rose Gentle Hydrating Cleanser with a cleansing cloth, the Chamomile & Rosehip Calming Day Cream and the much-praised Rosehip BioRegenerate Oil. Easy on the eyes and good for the skin!

Whoa… that just really kept your scrolling finger busy!

I think we’ve just earned ourselves a nice piece of chocolate from our Advent calendar… Oh wait, maybe you guys don’t actually have them? In that case, let’s don a festive hat!

Best Beauty Gift Ideas on Hey Pretty Beauty Blog (Santa Sandra)

I hope my beauty gift suggestions aren’t too late, and that you haven’t already bought one of those liquid sand frames… and if you did, I’d really appreciate some photographic evidence that they actually CAN look stylish, if arranged accordingly.

Have a great week!



The Best Beauty Gifts for 2017: The Hey Pretty Edit

P.S. from Steffi: Sandra had nothing to do with the fabulously inept Photoshop fail, but she can’t stop me!

Essie Winter Collection 2017: Ring in the Bling

Essie Winter 2017 Collection: Ring in the Bling (Be Cherry, shown), image by Hey Pretty

I can hardly believe it myself, but this Saturday, I prepared my very first Thanksgiving (we celebrated it a bit belatedly, here in Switzerland) turkey: A 13lb, organically raised turkey, 1 bottle of champagne, 3.5 hours in the oven, including my nervous opening-of-oven-door every ten minutes… and in the end, I didn’t take a single picture of the beautifully roasted bird.


Um… a beauty blogger, to be precise! In any case, the dinner was a huge success, and I even made two pumpkin pies: one of us, and one for my co-worker Sandra (which I promptly forgot to freeze and had to throw away three days later). It was the perfect lead-up to December and the holiday season.

Just like Essie’s new Winter 2017 Color collection!

Essie’s Global Color Designer Rebecca Minkoff (um, yes… the famous accessory designer) was inspired by the «incomparable mood of excitement on New Year’s Eve», and in particular, «the magical midnight moment, completed with a wish and a kiss.»

And this is probably not the best time to tell you that my personal «magic midnight moment» usually is followed by the thought «YAY! Now we can go home and I can finally lay my head on my wonderful pillow and believe with all my heart that this’ll be the BEST first night of the new year!» 


But not too old to be super-thrilled by the shimmery, rich nail polish shades Essie’s Winter Collection 2017!

Essie Winter 2017 Collection: Ring in the Bling (Image and Review by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog)

The six new seasonal shades are super-wearable, and for me personally (with my pinkish-pale skin tone), super wearable:

Ring in the Bling (cherry red with a dark blue shimmer), Be Cherry! (la bright, pink-based red) und Suit & Tied (a creamy, slightly peachy beige)

Essie Winter 2017: Ring in the Bling, Be Cherry! und Suit & Tied (Review auf Hey Pretty)

Social Lights (a lovely grey with a rose-gold shimmer), On Your Mistletoes (dark, greyish blue-green) und New Year, New Hue (a creamy purplish magenta)

Essie Winter 2017: Social-Lights, On Your Mistletoes, New Year, New Hue (Review auf Hey Pretty)

I’ve been feeling a bit off these past few days (don’t even SAY the word «flu», please!), so I chose the bright, happy «Be Cherry» to swatch…

Essie Be Cherry!, Swatched by Hey Pretty: Winter Collection 2017 «Ring in the Bling»

…and I think it’s a lovely shade for paler skin tones, but would probably look good on anyone!

Essie Be Cherry!, Swatched by Hey Pretty: Winter Collection 2017 «Ring in the Bling»

Honestly, I do my nails a LOT, but when I did this manicure, I was once again reminded that it just takes a bit of time!

If I don’t rush it, let the individual coats of polish dry properly, and seal it with the top coat from the Essie Gel Couture collection (my fave!), a manicure can last up to five days for me… and that includes preparing Thanksgiving dinner!

After our late holidays, I kind of missed out on any Black Friday or Cyber Week specials, except an order of REN Skincare products from London… but I did spend hours scrolling through some fab fashion sales, where I found this gorgeous bag here:

Whiting & Davis Crystal Ball Clutch, approx. US$ 200 at Shopbop

Whiting & Davis Crystal Ball Clutch (at Shopbop)

…and OH NO… I feel a «party bag» Fashon Flash coming on. I’M POWERLESS TO RESIST IT! So stay tuned for that!

So, the party nails are done. We still have three weeks to plan the rest of your New Year’s Eve outfit!

I hope you get off to a good start to the work week tomorow, and take it easy, okay? There are studies that show that productivity is super-low on Monday mornings from 8 to 12*!

The Essie Winter Collection 2017 «Ring in the Bling» is in stores now, for approx. US$ 9.00 per bottle.

Essie Winter 2017: Ring in the Bling (Review and Swatches by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog)

*I just totally made up that study so you can enjoy your Monday morning coffee and chat with your co-workers, tee hee

**The reviewed products shown in this review were supplied to me free of charge by the brand, or their PR agency.

The Organic Pharmacy: High Tech Natural Beauty

Brand Love and Review: The Organic Pharmacy (Image by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog)

Happy Tuesday, dear reader! Hope you’re enjoying the beautiful weather, wherever you are… and mostly because it’s been so cold and rainy here in Zurich that I’m starting to believe there is NO SUN ANYWHERE EVER.

Which is why I’ve decided to jump right in with a huge wheelbarrow-full of beautifully natural, organic beauty… and a brand I’ve been loving (spoiler!) for quite some time now: The Organic Pharmacy.

Thanks to lovely Lara of Green Lane here in Zurich (check it out), as well as via Andrea of the online shop Meet and Greet, I discovered this brand a while back, and use many of them on a daily basis. And the best news is… that the entire range is now also available at Marionnaud.

The Organic Pharmacy was founded 15 years ago by Margo Marrone, whose fascination with homeopathy started during her pharmacological studies and who turned her passion into her profession. Confronted with so many problematic ingredients that can be found in conventional skincare, Margo decided to implement pretty clear principles for her own brand, such as:

The very best botanical ingredients, well-thought out and effective products, ecological and ethical operation methods, and the absence of man-made dyes, perfumes, petrochemicals, preservatives and animal testing. For Margo, the main focus for The Organic Pharmacy is on the science that they put into their products… or, as she puts it:

«The high tech natural extracts, the pharmaceutical grade ingredients and their dosage in our products at levels that really count means serious results for healthy glowing skin.»

With a background like that, it’s not surprising that The Organic Pharmacy not only creates skincare, but also supplements. Although I’m personally super-interested in supplements (could someone please invent an effective but compatible iron supplement, please?), we’re going to focus on face care today.

And what a wonderful range it is!

So go grab a cup of coffee or green tea, silence your phone and get ready for my personal favorites by The Organic Pharmacy!

Rose Facial Cleansing Gel (100ml), CHF 72.90 (£46 in the UK)

The Organic Pharmacy new in Switzerland at Marionnaud: Rose Facial Cleansing Gel (Review on Hey Pretty)

This refreshing but super-gentle cleansing gel with aloe vera, rose hip, rose extract and blueberry extract is perfect for my morning cleanse. The scent is lively, yet gentle and the gel cleanses deeply while moisturizing the skin and infusing it with antioxidants.

For my PM routine, I tend to use The Organic Pharmacy’s wonderfully rich Carrot Butter.

Rose Facial Spritz Toner (100ml), CHF 45.90 (£27 in the UK)

The Organic Pharmacy Rose Spritz Facial Tone (Review and Image by Hey Pretty)

And what do we do after cleansing? That’s right, we tone! Well done, students… and this rose mist with aloe vera and persian Rose is perfect for sensitive and/or dehydrated skin.

Antioxidant Face Serum (35ml), CHF 136 Franken (£84 in the UK)

Natural, holistic and homeopathic skincare: The Organic Pharmacy Antioxidant Face Serum (Review by Hey Pretty)

Oh my… this serum may be expensive, but it is just divine – and it’s chock-full of incredibly powerful ingredients! It repairs, clears, plumps and protects the skin, all the while smelling absolutely GORGEOUS.

Rose hip, carrot and grapeseeds are great anti-oxidants, while grapefruit, orange and Sicilian lemon tone and clarify. Alphalipolic acid and lactic acid are here to really kick-start anti-aging processes in the skin… and ideally, the serum should be used with the Antioxidant Gel here:

Antioxidant Face Gel (35ml), CHF 92.90 (£55 in the UK)

Super-efficient organic skincare: The Organic Pharmacy Antioxidant Face Gel (Image by Hey Pretty)

This lightweight gel is based on aloe vera and rich in herbal extracts… and works in perfect symbiosis with the Antioxidant Face Serum. It contains sea minerals and marine algae (I know!), but also lovely herbs like St. John’s Wort and marigold.

Ideally, this duo should be applied as follows: One pump of Antioxidant Face Serum, mixed with one pump of Antioxidant Face Gel and applied to moist skin. I use them both, mornings and nights and really like them.

Another thing I really like about The Organic Pharmacy? That all products are still hand-made in small batches in London!

 reaction friends london reaction s matt leblanc GIF
And yes, I’ve been waiting for months for an excuse to use this GIF.

Antioxidant Face Cream (50ml), CHF 81.90 (£45 in the UK)

Hey Pretty's Organic Faves: The Organic Pharmacy Antioxidant Face Cream (Review and Image by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog)

This light yet potent moisturizer is the perfect supplement to the little serum orgy we just had: Its ingredients include (once again) Sicilian lemon and grapefruit that tone and tighten the skin. For me, these two ingredients are particularly interesting: buckwheat and propolis cera! The former has anti-bacterial properties, the latter is a natural anti-inflammatory and cell regenerator. It absorbs instantly and has a lovely texture.

Love, love, LOVE!

Honey and Jasmine Mask (60ml), CHF 65.90 (£37.95 in the UK)

The Organic Pharmacy Honey & Jasmine Mask (Image and Review by Hey Pretty)

Seriously: No skincare regimen without a mask! This one here is a treat for dry, stressed-out skin. Honey, evening primrose and shea butter nourish and hydrate, while jasmine balances and relaxes the skin… and smells lovely, too.

A quick Sandra tip here: You can totally amplify the results by using the (super-efficient) Enzyme Peel Mask beforehand! If I was Jane Fonda, I’d whisper a husky «because we’re worth it» into the camera. But seriously: Treat yourself a bit. It’s good for the body AND the soul!

Before I get all mushy and emo on you, a super-straigtforward Hey Pretty conclusion here:

The Organic Pharmacy is a wonderful brand with beautiful ingredients and visible results. And all that Made in the UK.

What’s left for me to say, except «thanks for reading»? Much love, a twist of rose hip essence as a goodbye and have a wonderful week!



The Organic Pharmacy is available at select organic beauty stores worldwide, and has just been launched at Marionnaud in Switzerland as well*. 

Review of The Organic Pharmacy (new in Switzerland) on Hey Pretty Beauty Blog

*The products reviewed in this post were sent to me free of charge by the brand or its PR agency.

9 Bad Beauty Habits and How To Break Them

Nine Bad Beauty Habits and how to Break Them (by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog)

It’s that time of the day: I’ve had enough coffee and I’ve ALREADY seen at least five girls today who have totally gone overboard with their makeup.

Which brings me neatly to today’s topic: Bad Beauty Habits and How To Break Them!

Because let’s be honest… we all make mistakes. Daily!

Yeah, Rita… you too!

I’ve always wanted to blog about this, because we all have certain habits concerning our skincare routine that may actually be causing some damage in the long-term.

That’s why I’m selling myself as a sort of emergency beauty doc today, and am compiling nine of the most common bad beauty habits, and some ideas on how to break them. All in the name of clearer, healthier and prettier skin!

Let’s launch straight into the «worst» beauty sins, shall we?

Bad Beauty Habits and How to Break Them by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog

I AM SPEECHLESS! But I have a number of friends who wear makeup, but hardly ever make an effort to remove it at night!

Seriously, girl… you not only ruin your pillowcase by doing this, but you’re also preventing your skin from breathing freely! Plus, your lashes are way more prone to breakage, because they’re stiffer than in their natural state and rubbin mascara-ed lashes can actually cause them to break. So please, please, please believe me: IF YOU USE MAKEUP, REMOVE IT AT THE END OF THE DAY!

Sorry for yelling. Here are two of my favorite products to remove eye makeup… one’s pretty affordable:

Sephora Collection Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover with cornflower extract (125ml), US$ 14

Bad Beauty Habits and How to Break Them by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog Sephora Eye Makeup Remover

…and one super-luxurious (but very effective!):

Lancôme Bi-Facil Double Action Eye Makeup Remover (125ml), US$ 30

Bad Beauty Habits and How to Break Them by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog Lancome Bi Facil Makeup Remover

This brings us to the next bad beauty habit:

Bad Beauty Habits and How to Break Them by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog

Okay, am I the only one who really likes the feeling of clean skin? I know that face wipes can be really handy: one swipe and you’ve gotten everything off, right?

Erm, NO.

While you can remove your makeup with wipes, you should really cleanse your skin afterwords. Otherwise all the not-so-great stuff, like alcohol and preservatives, just sits on your skin for aaaaaages.


It’s okay for travelling, but at home it’s really not that big of a deal to properly clean your face, is it?

True story: A friend of mine suddenly noticed that her skin was going haywire, with redness and a nasty stinging sensation. At the end it was neither her moisturizer nor the makeup, but the face wipes which caused the problem. Enough said!

Bad Beauty Habits and How to Break Them by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog

Yes, I too love peels and cleansing masks. And it’s of course super-beneficial to the skin to exfoliate regularly and gently. And that’s the keyword: «gentle»! Mechanical peels, either with a scrub or with a cleansing brush, can feel really good and give your skin an instant glow.

But you should pay attention to what you’re putting on your skin after exfoliating.

Using a product that exfoliates chemically, with ingredients like AHA- or BHA-acids, directly after a mechanical peel might just be too much for the skin.

Over-exfoliated skin is stressed skin, because it doesn’t have enough time to regenerate and rebuild its natural barrier. This can result in red, shiny skin or even weird blackheads.

So: Yes to frequent peels, but don’t overdo it. A good way to incorporate a gentle exfoliation is to cleanse your face with a clean washcloth.

I’ve been preaching it for years: Daily sunscreen is a must if you want to prevent your skin from aging prematurely!

And yes, I’m 44, so I get to say things like that! Many of us think that it’s enough to rely on the SPF that’s in our BB cream or liquid foundation. The problem with that is that we never use enough of the product to build up the SPF to its full extent.

The solution?

Apply a proper sunblock after you’ve moisturised!

I like the Clarins UV Plus SPF 50 (30ml), around US$ 50

Bad Beauty Habits and How to Break Them by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog Clarins UV Plus SPF 50

…but my true favourite is a gift from Japan: it’s super light and cheap!

Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Gel SPF 50, around US$ 10 via Amazon

Bad Beauty Habits and How to Break Them by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog Biore UV Aqua Rich

Are you one of those people who complain that their makeup doesn’t last through the day? Then you should really consider using a primer!

I haven’t applied eyeshadow without using a primer first for years, but it took me a while to start using one for my face, too. But the results are pretty instantaneous:

If I use a primer, I don’t have to powder or blot my face as much during the day, my foundation applies much easier (and I use less), and my pores seem tighter.

A lot of primers contain silicone, which makes the product glide on more easily. If you don’t like the slippery feeling, or if your skin reacts to silicones, there’s a lot of great products without silicone, such as Dr. Barbara Sturm’s Monika Bluner Primer (see below) or REN Skincare’s Perfect Canvas.

Dr. Barbara Sturm Anti-Aging Primer Monika Blunder (30ml), around US$ 90

Bad Beauty Habits and How to Break Them by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog Dr Barbara Sturm Anti Aging Primer Monika Blunder

NYX Professional Make Up Angel Veil Skin Perfecting Primer (30ml), US$ 16.00 (contains silicones)

Bad Beauty Habits and How to Break Them by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog NYX Angel Veil Primer

I know, I KNOW. I’m also a passionate belly sleeper! But it’s a fact that wrinkles appear faster if you sleep on your stomach, especially if you (like most people) don’t have a silk pillow case!

Those who sleep on their backs, look much more relaxed in the morning.

The good news? You can train your body to sleep on your back! It’s worth a try, isn’t it? Lying on your back, try to breathe deeply so that you almost start to meditate. That way, your brain starts to associate lying on your back with relaxation.

Or you do what I do: Use tightening and plumping skincare in the mornings, to counteract the «damage» that happend during the night.

While you were sleeping, so to speak!

Have you already noticed that little image of a open jar on the label of most of your beauty products? This is an indicator on how long you can use a product after opening… but I have to admit, that I may also be guilty of not cleaning out my beauty drawer often enough.

Generally speaking: the more liquid a product contains, the faster you should use it up. Especially creams in jars, which you take out using your finger, can build up an impressive number of bacteria after a few months, even if they contain preservatives to counteract this. And beauty products (but skincare with active ingredients in particular!) really shouldn’t be exposed to direct sunlight.

Because I love you (and because I’m so talented), I made a cheat sheet on how long you can keep beauty products!

Chic, isn’t it? And so Pinterest-y…

And about powdered make-up products: I’m still using blushes and eyeshadows that I’ve had for several years! But as a last tip: If a products changes consistency or starts to smell weird, throw it away. Better safe than sorry!

Don’t worry. I’m not going to lecture you on how you should never pop a pimple. Because let’s be honest, who really wants to be seen with a visible whitehead? NOBODY, THAT’S WHO.

So if you have to pop a pimple, please make sure your face is make up free and clean. Then you press a warm washcloth onto the area, to soften the pores up a bit. Even better? Take a steamy bath and wash your face a few times during it.

Then, you can GENTLY try to pop it, using your two index fingers, wrapped in a Kleenex. But remember: Don’t overdo it! If you press to hard or too long, you can really damage your skin. If the pimple won’t «give» after one or two tries, KNOCK IT OFF and back away.

And if you manage to pop it, be sure to use salicylic acid afterwards to help avoid spreading the inflammation.

These are two of my tried and tested favourites for SOS pimple care:

Vichy Normaderm Hyaluspot (15ml), US$ 19

Bad Beauty Habits and How to Break Them by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog Vichy Normaderm HyaluSpot

Kiehl’s Breakout Control Targeted Anti-Blemish Spot Treatment (20ml), US$ 28

Bad Beauty Habits and How to Break Them by Hey Pretty Beauty Blog Kiehls Breakout Control Targeted Blemish Anti-Spot Treatment

Just so you know: Both are quite potent and you’ll most probably see a bit of peeling on the surrounding skin after a few days, but they WORK.

This is the snowflake that turns into an avalanche. Or the grain of sand that turns into a dune… Wait.. well, you know what I mean.

Your first instinct when you spot a grey hair ist to pluck it, right. The problem with that? Each plucked out hair grows back, but not necessarily in the same direction as before. This may ruin your hairdo, no joke!

Who wants a head full of weird, sticky-out-y antennae halo hair?

But even more dramatic is, that if you pluck a hair out one time too many, the follicle, at some point, will be traumatized enough to simply stop growing hair, which means: Thinner hair for you, and maybe even visible thinning spots on your scalp.

My suggestion would be to dye your hair or maybe have some highlights done, which make grey hair appear softer. On another note, I’m looking forward to my white hair! White hair is significantly thicker than my fine hair! INSTANT OLD LADY VOLUME!

And that’s it for today’s beauty sermon.

I hope you didn’t feel caught-out too often… but if you did, you know what to do!

Have a great day and be good!

Nine of the worst beauty habits, and how to break them (Hey Pretty)

Hashtag Craftinggoals: 10 Great DIY Projects on Pinterest

10 Great Craft Ideas on Pinterest (Hey Pretty Roundup), Image Credit: Delia Creates

If you read Hey Pretty on the regular, you’ll probably know I’m pretty straightforward in both my love for all things beauty (it’s my job as a beauty journalist, after all), and that I take blogging pretty seriously.

But sometimes, even I can get a bit sick of mascara, so I hope you’ll allow me an excursion into DIY heaven today! Yesterday was a bit of a rainy Saturday here in Zurich, so I spent a serious amount of time on my couch, lost on Pinterest. And let me say that…

#craftinggoals are a thing!

I haven’t checked the hashtag yet, but it doesn’t change the fact that I’m in the mood for crafting today. And because I’m the queen of craft projects that get started, but somehow never finished, it’s probably easier if I just present ten of my current favorite DIY projects on Pinterest today, instead of showing you my sad, aborted felt flower project, ahem!

The Best DIY Ideas on Pinterest: 10 Hey Pretty Faves

  1. Rainbow Weaving by We Are Scout
Rainbow Weaving Tutorial, Image Credit: We Are Scout (via Pinterest)
Image Credit: We Are Scout (via Pinterest)

I always die a little on the inside when I see weavings. Woven art? Weavinart? IN ANY CASE, this is a goshdarned rainbow, clouds and all! How, exactly, we’re supposed to recreate this glorious piece of art, is something only the DIY blog We Are Scout knows. But… sigh, I really would love to have this hanging over my bed!

2. Fimo Clay Wall Lettering by Mein Feenstaub

Fimo Clay Wall Sign, Image by Mein Feenstaub (via Pinterest)
Image Credit: Mein Feenstaub (via Pinterest)

DIY Blogger Lisa of the German blog Mein Feenstaub «can’t sit still», but still manages to create this lovely wall sign made with pink Fimo clay? I love the idea and may just steal it for Christmas presents. Vera, be warned: A «fuck you all» sign may make its way to your house soon!

*Update*: Don’t worry, Vera and I don’t really think that everyone should go f*ç% themselves. We just think that saying this in a whisper is supremely satisfying, even if it empties our Karma account every single time. I bought a good luck charm from a Buddhist monk yesterday, so I’m pretty sure my karma’s evened out. FOR NOW. 

3. DIY Balloon Stuffed Animal Unicorn by Little Inspiration

DIY Balloon Animal Unicorn by LittleInspiration (Hey Pretty Roundup of fun DIY Projects on Pinterest)
Image credit: LittleInspiration (via Pinterest)

Balloon animal meets unicorn mane turns into a stuffed animal? It’s like a fairy tail come true! Okay, you’ll need a bit of dexterity, as well as a deep enjoyment of stuffing filling into fabric fubes… but just think how happy your cat’s going to be, when she can destroy this pretty unicorn in the middle of the night!

And just a short word of warning: There’s a ton of DIY inspo on «Little Inspiration» for unicorn fans, so don’t come crying to me when your house is filled with unicorns and your friends won’t answer the doorbell when you stop by!

4. DIY Trinket Dishes with Leaves by Lia Griffith

Ten Great DIY Projects on Pinterest (great gift ideas, too): The Hey Pretty Roundup with Lia G
Image Credit: Lia Griffith (via Pinterest)

How I love the word «trinket»! It suggests that any small object you have in your house is worthy of display and adoration… and this may actually include a wisdom tooth that your dentist had to saw in half IN YOUR MOUTH before he could extract it and you weirdly kept the pieces. Display your pain! PAIN IS ART!

5. DIY Painted Bottles by Spaaz

DIY Black Painted Bottles (Recycling Art), Image via Spaaz and probably Credit: MotherArt
Image Credit: Spaaz/MotherArt (via Pinterest)

I just discovered that the German website Spaaaz seems to be its own kind of DIY Inspiration-Pinterest-Style! This all sounds a bit Inception-y to me, so I’ll just say:

You could make these moody black vases with empty Prosecco bottles, too. And I wouldn’t have to sneak my empty bottles to the recycling station every Monday, tee hee. I’m kidding, Mom. Kinda.

OMG, this next crafting idea is SUPER-PINTERESTY!

6. Hanging Coconut Planters by Barfuss im November

Hanging Coconut Planters by Barfuss im November (The Best DIY Projects on Pinterest by Hey Pretty)
Image credit: Barfuss im November (via Pinterest)

Another lovely crafting project from a German blog! And now that we’ve finally stopped making fun of our great-grandmas and their macramé decor, we want some for ourselves! Instagram favorite coconut meets mini cactus, lovingly united by a bit of macrame yarn.

The best news is that the step-by-step by Barfuss im November is pretty simple… even if you don’t speak German!

7. Wassermelonen-Pinatas by Minted

Watermelon Pinatas by Minted (10 of the best DIY Crafting Projects on Pinterest by Hey Pretty)
Image Credit: Minted (via Pinterest)

It’s kind of tragic that I’m realizing that I didn’t have a single piece of watermelon this summer… and it’s nearly Halloween! Well, I guess that means I really should throw myself into chestnuts on an open fire and all those lovely fall and winter delicacies, right? Sadly, a roasted chestnut pinata wouldn’t be NEARLY as photogenic!

The crafting blog Minted knows all about cool projects like this one, and is totally worth bookmarking!

I’m pretty sure you’ve been wondering where all the pompoms have gone, if Steffi’s writing about DIY projects?


8. Pom Pom Napkin Rings by Art Bar Blog

DIY Pom Pom Napking Rings by Art Bar Blog (10 Great Crafting Projects on Pinterest by Hey Pretty)
Image credit: Art Bar (via Pinterest)

I’m pretty sure my happy sigh can be heard clear over in London, because: I KNOW POMPOMS. And I probably know how to tie them into a pompom bunch. And then tie all that to a pretty fabric napin, and then invite my fanciest, most conceited friends over for Sunday brunch, JUST to show off my skills? YES MA’AM!

The step-by-step is here on the Artbar blog. And you can just come over on Sunday around 10 AM, okay?

9. Rosemary Wreath Place Cards DIY by Camille Styles

DIY Rosemary Wreath Place Cards by Camille Styles (The Best Pinterest Crafting Projects by Hey Pretty)
Image credit: Camille Styles (via Pinterest)

How pretty are these tiny rosemary wreaths? And now, we finally know what to do with our gnarly, dried-out rosemary bush at the end of summer! These would look (and smell) great on a Thanksgiving or Christmas table, doncha think?

And by the way… I really need a «Chanel» in my circle of friends. Simply because I’d like to be able to say «Oh, its Chanel. Sorry, gotta take this.»

10. DIY Felt Flowers Tutorial by Delia Creates

DIY Felt Flowers Tutorial by Delia Creates (The prettiest DIY Projects on Pinterest, sourced by Hey Pretty)
Image credit: Delia Creates (via Pinterest)

In terms of DIY-ing, I regularly overestimate myself (go check out my blog post with my new, apple-green sewing machine if you don’t believe me!), but I truly, honestly believe that I could manage these lovely felt flowers… maybe even while watching an episode of «The Handmaid’s Tale»!

Which, of course, means that I’d NEVER EVER manage it. But they’re pretty to look at, in a Downton Abby-kind of way! Thank you, Delia Creates, for this much-needed reality check.

And then immediately, I ask: Where in Zurich can I by felt in pretty colors?

I know what you did this weekend. And if you’re reading this sometime in the spring, don’t forget to check out my blog post with cute Easter DIY projects.

Have fun crafting… or at least getting lost on Pinterest, like me!

The Best DIY Projects on Pinterest, according to Hey Pretty Beauty Blog

Preview: MAC Snow Ball Holiday Collection 2017

MAC Holiday Make-Up Collection Snow Ball (2017): Product Images of the entire line on Hey Pretty

Welcome back, make-up-fiends! Or should I say «friends»? Today’s feature is going to be a LONG one, so lean back! As a beauty journalist and blogger, I seriously love October, because this is the month when all the beautiful holiday collections start arriving… both physically at my doorstep, and via press kits and previews. As I write, I’m looking at four different beauty Advent Calenders, and it’s not even Halloween yet!

While I wallow happily in pre-holiday beauty bliss, there are some collections that are so lovely that I can’t just sit around and wait for the launch event… and the MAC Holiday Collection 2017 is one of ’em!

«Find your rhythm. All eyes are on the cool kids, hanging out, swaying to the beat, showing off with a little festive flirtation. You’re the sleighbelle of the ball, dancing until morning, feeling alive, revelling in the new generation. The lights catch a crystal and glitter snowflake adornment.»

MAC Snow Ball Holiday Collection 2017: PR Image – Preview on Hey Pretty Beauty Blog

On November 2nd, the Holiday Make-Up Collection will be hitting counters here in Switzerland (and on the night before… pre-Christmas-Eve, if you will), MAC is hosting a big press and blogger launch here in Zurich, and YES, I’ll be taking you along for the ride via Instagram-Livestream, so make a note! It’ll be so much fun, discovering this glittery, shimmery collection live that I think we all need to collectively prep for it.

Which is why you’re about to get the entire, comprehensive and kind of exhaustive preview of ALL OF MAC’S HOLIDAY 2017 SPECIALS.

«All the bling you’ll ever need – everyone goes starstruck. See you on the dance floor.»

Here we go! The first part of the Christmas Collection is the Snow Ball Holiday Color Collection:

MAC Snow Ball Lipstick (in six shades), approx. US$ 18

MAC Snow Ball Lipsticks 2017: Warm Ice, I'm Glistening, Holiday Crush, Shimmer & Spice, Rouge En Snow and Elle Belle (Holiday Collection 2017) MAC Snow Ball Lipsticks 2017: Warm Ice, I'm Glistening, Holiday Crush, Shimmer & Spice, Rouge En Snow and Elle Belle (Holiday Collection 2017)

from top left: Elle Belle, Holiday Crush and I’m Glistening and bottom from left: Rouge en Snow, Shimmer and Spice and Warm Ice

I can hardly wait to see the gorgeous packaging live. It looks like frosted gold!

MAC Snow Ball Extra Dimension Eye Shadow (in five shades), approx. US$ 20

This shimmery, almost holographic eye shadow looks beautiful, doesn’t it? This hue here is the pinky-gold Stylishly Merry

MAC Snow Ball 2017: Extra Dimension Eyeshadow in Stylishly Merry

…and here come the other four shades: Delicate Drift (light pink shimmer), Frostwinked (top, white with gold shimmer, as well as It’s Snowing (pinky-purple shimmer) and Starry Starry Nights (black with silver shimmer, bottom right).

MAC Extra Dimension Eye Shadow in It's Snowing, Frostwinked, Delicate Drift and Starry, Starry Nights (Review Snow Ball Collection 2017 on Hey Pretty)

If they’re even a bit similar to last year’s single eyeshadows in the Nutcracker Sweet collection, they’ll be great at doubling up as highlighters! I’m still using mine from last year almost daily!

For the… um, more dramatic amongst us, there’s also some limited edition holiday lashes to be had:

MAC Snow Ball Lash in Silver and Gold, approx. US$ 17 each

MAC Snow Ball Lashes in Silver and Gold (Holiday Make Up Collection 2017): Preview on Hey Pretty Beauty Blog

…and then there’s this beautiful highlighting powder (which’ll fly off the shelves, I’m sure):

MAC Snow Ball Face Powder in Happy Go Dazzlingly and Here Comes Joy, approx. US$ 34

MAC Snow Ball Face Powder in Happy Go Dazzlingly and Here Comes Joy (Holiday 2017 Collection)

This festive face powder has a subtle shimmer and works beautifully as a highlighter, too: On the top, the somewhat cooler gold-based Happy Go Dazzlingly, on the bottom, the rose gold Here Comes Joy, both featuring a gorgeous embossed snowflake! Aaaaahhh…

MAC Snow Ball Adornment in Festive Bling, approx. US$ 17

MAC Snow Ball Adornment (Holiday Collection 2017): Preview on Hey Pretty Beauty Blog

These tiny snowflake/crystal jewels are meant to be applied as, quite literally, BLING.

Frozen Bindi, anyone?

And now, we’re launching straight into the «why-oh-WHY-won’t-anyone-gift-me-these» Holiday Kits that make any MAC counter the ultimate go-to for wonderful Christmas gifts!

Here are all the MAC Snow Ball Holiday Kits 2017!

MAC Snow Ball So Obsessed Mini Lipstick Kit (with 10 of their bestselling shades), approx. US$ 70

MAC Snow Ball 2017: So Obsessed Mini Lip Kit (see the entire collection on Hey Pretty!)

‘NUFF SAID. I just can’t. Literally run, don’t walk to grab these babies!

MAC Snow Ball Eye Compact in Gold (top) und Rose Gold, approx. US$ 30 each

MAC Snow Ball Eye Compacts (Holiday Collection 2017)

Sorry the press images don’t include closeups of the shades, but I’ll be sure to show you at the event. These two eye shadow palettes both look super-wearable, and I’m liking the double-ended eyeshadow brush that goes with them!

More highlights for eyes, courtesy of your MAC holiday experts?

MAC Snow Ball Eye Bag in Smoky Pink and Smoky Gold, approx. US$ 40 each

MAC Snow Ball Eye Bag in Smoky Pink (Holiday Collection 2017)

In the Smoky Pink Kit: Eye shadow duo in Ready to Party and Light of the Silvery Moon, MAC Technakohl Liner in Graphblack and Black Extreme Dimension Mascara…

MAC Snow Ball Eye Bag in Smoky Gold (Holiday Collection 2017)

and in the Smoky Gold Kit: Eye shadow duo in Just Gleaming and Snowdusk, MAC Photogravure Technakohl Liner (soft black with a brownish undertone) and the Black Extreme Dimension Mascara.


MAC Snow Ball Lip Bag in Nude and Red, approx. US$ 40 each

MAC Snow Ball Lip Bag in Nude (Holiday Collection 2017)

These crackled-metallic bags contain the perfect (full-sized) lip set: In the «Nude» version, with the Sending Love lipstick (pinky nude), Iced Dream Lipglass (nude pink with gold shimmer) and a Doubletime Pro Longwear Lip Pencil in Pinky Brown.

For me, the red version’s much more exciting – with a Hooray for Holiday lipstick (matte, intense red), Joy to Enjoy Lipglass (deep red) and a Pro Longwear Lip Pencil in Kiss me Quick, a yellow-based red.

MAC Snow Ball Lip Bag in Red (Holiday Collection 2017)


MAC Snow Ball Mini Lip Gloss Kit in (from top) NudePink or Rose – approx. US$ 30 each

MAC Snow Ball Mini Gloss Kit in Nude, Pink and Rose (from top) – Holiday Collection 2017

Ooh, this metallic disco bag is my favorite! Each one contains three Cremesheen Glass glosses in mini versions (sorry, I’m not going to list each and every shade)…

MAC Snow Ball Mini Lipstick Kit (in four different versions), approx. US$ 30 each

MAC Snow Ball Mini Lipstick Kit in Pink (Holiday Collection 2017)

The sequinned bag contains three miniature MAC lipsticks in four different color families: Cool, Pink (pictured above, with the Shades Teasemaker, Lovebuddy and Dangerously Red), Warm and Rose… Here in Switzerland, the Rose version will be an online exclusive – and sorry, the images for them weren’t included in the press kit!

One of the biggest highlights in any MAC holiday collection? The limited-edition brush sets!

What’s not to love here? High quality brushes that will last for years, in special (non-black-handled) finishes. The perfect present for one’s self, cough cough!

MAC Snow Ball Brush Kit Basic (Silver), approx. US$ 50

MAC Snow Ball Brush Kit Silver (Basic): Holiday Collection 2017

Contains: Powder Brush, Pointed Foundation Brush, All-Over Shadow Brush, Smudging Liner Brush and Brow Groomer

MAC Snow Ball Brush Kit Advanced (Gold), approx. US$ 50

MAC Snow Ball Brush Kit Gold (Advanced): Holiday Collection 2017

With: Angled Powder Brush, Angled Foundation Brush, Angled Large Shadow Brush, Angled Small Shadow Brush and Bent Pointed Liner Brush

For on-the-go touchups, there’s also a chic mini brush set (I’ve got a set especially for travelling!):

MAC Snow Ball Brush Kit Mini, approx. US$ 30

MAC Snow Ball Mini Brush Set (Holiday Collection 2017): See the entire collection on Hey Pretty!

With: Full Powder Brush, Rounded Shadow Brush und Angled Liner Brush in a metallic bag with a fluffy pompom. WISH LIST! Do I need to bookmark this page for my husband? Will YOU tell him, please?

These somewhat professional kits are a fab gift idea for real make-up junkies who love trying new things:

MAC Snow Ball Pigment & Glitter Kit in Gold or Pink, approx. US$ 30 each

MAC Snow Ball 2017 Pigment and Glitter Kits in Gold and Pink (entire collection on Hey Pretty Beauty Blog)

Both versions contain three mini-version of the ready-to-play MAC Pigments, Glitter and Sparkles (which you can mix into nail polish, gloss or liquid highlighter).

MAC Snow Ball Mascara Kit, US$ 30

MAC Snow Ball Mascara Kit (Holiday Collection 2017)

Contains: To-Go sizes of False Black False Lashes Mascara, False Lashes Maximizer and  Clear Brow Set…

And finishing up, there are four make-up kids for real make-up fans, with some limited-edition treats at great prices:

MAC Snow Ball Face Bag in Peach oder Gold, approx. US$ 50 each*

MAC Snow Ball Face Bags (Holiday 2017 Collection)

*these may be Europe exclusives… I’m not quite sure yet!

The Peach version contains the Show Gold Extra Dimension Skinfinish in pink-based peach, whereas the Gold version has a Whisper of Gild Extra Dimension Skinfinish powder in a beautifully wearable, cool gold. Both sets come with the versatile Synthetic Full Fan Brush, for perfect application and blending.

These kits are pretty fab, too:

MAC Snow Ball Eye & Lip Bag in Pink or Rose Gold, approx. US$ 40 each (in Switzerland, they’ll be exclusively available at the MAC Stores in Zürich and Lucerne!)

MAC Snow Ball Eye and Lip Kit (Holidays 2017)

Contents: Lip Gloss, a gllittery Dazzleliner Eyeliner and a Foiled Shadow with a super-intense metallic finish.


MAC Show Ball Shadescents Kit in Candy Yum-YumCrème d’Nude und Ruby Woo, approx. US$ 30 each – available at select counters only

MAC Snow Ball Shadescents Mini Kits (Holiday 2017)

Awww, aren’t these tiny drawstring pouches the JAM? They contain a miniature rollerball of three of MAC’s (pretty intense) signature scents, plus the lipstick shade that inspired them. Love!


This post has totally taken it out of me! To be honest, I’m writing this up in our vacation home in the «Val Müstair», in one of the most remote, alpine corners of Switzerland, where my family’s currently on a mini-break: My husband’s out mountain biking and the girls (teenagers) are upstairs watching Netflix and preparing themselves for an iminent mom-yell on my part going «We’re heading out for A NATURE WALK!».

Which they’ll actually do, but all three of us will be documenting it our respective Instagram accounts. Modern parenting!

So, in closing: THe MAC Holiday Collection «Snow Ball» will be released on November , 2017 here in Switzerland… and experience shows that a lot of the most desirable kits are sold out pretty quickly. So if you have a favorite here, be sure to set a reminder to head out to a counter (or hit up the online shop).

As soon as the products are live online, I’ll be linking them up here – and on November 1st, 2017 you can join my livestream on Instagram (16:00h CET) and see the collection live at the MAC store in Zurich!

For now, sunny greetings from the Swiss alps and have a great day!

The MAC Snowball Holiday 2017 will be launching on November 2nd at all MAC counters and in the online shop… limited edition, as always!  

MAC Snow Ball Holiday Collection 2017: PR Image with Models – Preview on Hey Pretty Beauty Blog

MAC Holiday Collection 2017: «Snow Ball» Preview of all the products on Hey Pretty

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