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afterlight Emily/Twenty/London

Monday, 29 June 2015

More Salon Pro Love

A trip back home always means a visit into my favourite Boots. With a lot of points saved up to spend I ended up with a mini-boots haul which I shared on my instagram - oops! As you know from a previous post, I am loving the Rimmel Salon Pro formulas.

I had spotted this shade, Green Dragon, before, and finally decided to add it to my basket. I'm always a fool for a blue or green nail polish and this pistachio-blue shade is just perfect for summer in my opinion.

Now, shall I rave about the formula of these polishes? For under a fiver they really do deserve a round of applause: long wearing, chip proof and high shine. What more can you want from a nail polish. I'm pretty sure you'll be finding me in this shade for a few weeks!

Friday, 26 June 2015

Morning Skincare Routine

I love my morning skincare routine. All of these products help me achieve a healthy, dewy glow and a perfect base for applying my makeup. 

I start off with the Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel. This is perfect for my skin first thing in the morning. Containing vitamins A, C and E it really helps to 'waken' up my skin. It looks instantly brighter and cleaner. Whilst it is called a gel, once you rub it between you fingers, and apply on to your skin, it turns into an oil-like consistency. This means you have such a gentle cleanse in the morning and really helps to give a glow at the end. I love this cleanser!

I then use the Omorovicza Queen of Hungry Mist. This is a lovely, hydrating toner. Whilst some people may argue that this is far too expensive for its purpose, I honestly have never used a product that has given such an instant glow. Ingredients of rose, orange blossom and sage water help to purify and tone the skin. The apple pectin really hydrates the skin leaving such an instant result. This product can also be used throughout the day when your skin needs that extra boost. 

I began using the Sarah Chapman Intense hydrating booster  last year when my skin was suffering from dryness, especially on my cheeks, and stress. This is a lovely silky, serum that adds such a nourishing layer of moisture in my skin. It really helps me to achieve a natural glow whilst also plumping the skin. 

Finally, I go in with my Kiehls Ultra Facial Cream which I wrote about in my last post. Now I understand that these products are on the luxury side of skincare. But then again, my ethos is that our skin is the most important thing we own - it needs to be looked after. Most of these products I bought when I worked at Harrods. If I had to only use one thing from this list it would probably be the Oskia cleanser. For £28 I think this is a reasonably priced, premium quality cleanser that leaves the skin feeling so smooth and nourished. 

What are your morning favourites?

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

The Moisturiser

After quite a few months of using the Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cream I thought it was time to give you some feedback. First things first, lets start with the basics: simple, lightweight packaging makes this great for travelling. It's fragrance free so there is nothing too sickly or sweet to endure. 

When it comes to texture it is very light. It is therefore very easy to absorb into the skin but still extremely moisturising. I've so far found this very easy and simple for balancing out my complexion and leaving my skin feeling comfortable. By that I mean my face doesn't feel heavily caked in moisturiser and I can straightaway move on to applying my makeup for the day. 

Now, at the moment I have been using this day and night. Weirdly I have LOVED it for the daytime, but not so much at night. When it comes to evening skincare I do like a thick, rich texture.  Something like the Origins Night-A-Mins for example, which feels like it will do wonders overnight! However, as a daytime moisturiser that has been great, especially in the warmer months when I want something lightweight.  Then again, this is not claiming to do the specifics of a night cream. It is a simple all-rounder. 

The only negative about the cream is the lack of SPF. I assume that Kiehl's choose this so that it can be applied morning and night. Moreover, Kiehl's do other SPF specific products which can be applied after the cream. Nevertheless, if you are looking for something simple that's going to do the job of moisturising your skin then I would definitely recommend this product. 

Have any moisturisers to recommend? Please leave a comment. 

Monday, 22 June 2015

Taste of London

Last week was my lucky week as I won tickets to  Taste of London. A festival of food in Regent's Park which celebrates the diversity and creativity of London's restaurants. If you're one of my instagram followers then you'll know I love a good food post. So instead of my nail themed Monday, I thought I'd share with you some of the delicious things I tried out!

Firstly was this bad boy from Kurobuta. A BBQ pork belly in a steamed bun with a spicy peanut sauce.  Throughout the day I kept thinking back to this, it really did set the bar high! 

Annoyingly this was the only photo I took of the next place, Bubbledogs. I have always wanted to try this restaurant on Charlotte Street. The menu is simple: hot dogs and champagne. In my opinion, that's the perfect combination. However, here I tried their Ranch 'Tater Tots' which were some rather snazzy potato croquets. 

If you've dined at Duck and Waffle then this photo is recognisable: Bacon wrapped dated. This photo does not do any justice to this plate of deliciousness. Situated at the top of Heron Tower Duck and Waffle is, without a doubt, one of the coolest restaurants I have been to in London. The menu is so unique.

This Barbecoa pretty pudding is a salted peanut butter Cheesecake with black cherries and sour cherry candy floss. I chose this mainly due to other Instagram posts on the day, it just looked so inviting! But I've never been one to say no to cheesecake. This was good, but I did expect more of a peanuty taste…

HALF TIME. It's time for a classic Sipsmith Gin and Tonic and a rest to digest. 

 I had never heard of Mazi before, but I was certainly all hands up for their Grandma's meatballs with handmade crisps. They were rich tasty meat balls that left me and my boyfriend with a big grin. We just wanted some tomato sauce and spaghetti on the side.

I'm sure a lot of you Londoner's will have heard of MEATliquor. I, however, have never tried the famous burger chain. I know, I hang my head in shame. This is one of their Dead Hippie Sliders. A mustard-fried beef patty, with dead hippie Sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles and onions. Drooling yet?! Whilst it may not be a fancy as the more expensive restaurants, this was definitely one of the tastiest things I ate the whole day. 

Then, my last dish of the day was from Chop Shop. A Roast pulled pork sausage roll with apple ketchup. Mmm, the pork was perfectly cooked. My only criticism was it was too small. 

Now I did just say I had my last dish but what I meant to say was my last savoury dish. I wasn't going to just walk past the Primrose Bakery stand now was I?! I chose one of their malteaser brownies. A lovely sweet treat to end a day of stuffing my face.

Friday, 19 June 2015


One thing I have't talked about in a while  is skincare. But this post on acid toners has been waiting a while to pop up. When we see the word acid we perhaps get a little scared, of course why would we want to put acid on our face?! However, the % of acid in these toners is relatively low and therefore safe enough to cause some impressive results on our skin.

The whole process of acid based toners was introduced to my by the goddess of skincare Caroline Hirons. She believes that toner should be the second step in our routine; it should balance the ph levels of your skin after cleansing, exfoliate, hydrate and, most important, help for the next steps of your routine (serum and moisturise) to penetrate more thoroughly.

Now before I learnt this information my every other day routine would be a gritty exfoliator. What I then learnt from Hirons is that this can help to spread infection if we have a spot and does not restore the ph level on our skin. Acid toners are applied on a cotton wool pad and then just smooth them over my face and neck. 

Since introducing this step I can honestly say that I've seen improvements in my skin like no other. My skin now doesn't experience crazy blemishes, it feels smoother and almost more radiant. The two toners I switch between are the Clarins Gentle Exfoliater Brightening toner and the Pixi Glow Tonic. Now I feel almost embarrassed to admit that I can't really detect anything different between these two products apart from the smell. If I was 'suffering' a period of bad skin however, I would perhaps be more inclined to use the Clarins one as, from experience, this has always helped to clear my skin. I tend to put these toners in my nightie routine, as suggested by Hirons, and I only use them about 3 times a week. 

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

The New Foundation

It is a rare occasion when a foundation graces the pages of FolkesThinks. However, with a SpaceNK incentive soon to expire I (as always) gave I good think as to what my splurge was going to be. I was pretty confident that I wanted a new foundation due to some important events coming up over the summer. After a lot of deliberating with friends I finally decided that the 'one' was going to be the updated formula of the Laura Mercier Silk Crème Moisturizing Photo Edition Foundation

Now I never owned the original. Infact my only experience with the brand is the tinted moisturiser, the famous secret camouflage concealer and, of course, their bath range. I had read a lot of mixed reviews about the updated foundation but decided to take a leap and try it (note this was a definitely a leap at £35!).

You all know I love a dewy, luminous base which is why I opted for this formula rather than the oil free version. I also was sucked into the label 'photo edition.' One trait I always suffer with is flashback on photos, and with one of these summer events being my graduation ceremony I do not want a record of my big shiny forehead. 

Trying to find my perfect colour match was a little difficult. That would perhaps be the main down point of this foundation, the colour range is not particularly impressive. The one I have isn't peeerfect, but once blended and buffed into the skin it gives a really nice base. In the after photo (the second one) please note I do not have concealer on. I just wanted to focus on the difference in complexion. 

So far I am loving this foundation. I've even worn it on a day when I didn't have a special event - now that's saying something in the Emily Folkes makeup bag. The coverage is on point, and it lasts so well. For example, I wore this for my graduation ball a few weeks ago and it lasted from 1pm in the afternoon till 1am. That deserves a round of applause I think. Oh and most importantly, the photos from the evening are not scarred with my flashback face. Bingo. 

What are your favourite high end foundations or Laura Mercier products for that matter? I would to try out more from her brand.

Monday, 15 June 2015

Manicure Heroes

Instead of boring you with another post dedicated to my love for the Rimmel Salon Pro formulas I thought I would share with you some of my favourite products for the perfect manicure. After all, I do like to keep Monday posts aligned with the #ManicureMonday theme. 

One of my first steps is to use the Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover. A cool tingly gel that you apply over your cuticles, leave a few minutes and then push down. Simple. I then like to buff down my nails to get rid of any ridges. The Nails Inc 4-Way Buffer is my go to tool for this step. Sometimes I just leave my nails after using this as it helps to create shiny, healthy nails. 

After using my chosen polish and leaving it a few minutes to dry I use the Rimmel Finishing Touch Ultra Shine Top Coat. This stuff is a hero product in my beauty books. Infact, it's probably a number 1 in my nail polish collection. It not only provides a seriously good shine but it reaaally helps against chipping. The price is the final bonus. I can't recommend this product enough. 

Finally, I spray my nails with the Mavala Mavadry Spray because who has time to wait around for their manicure to dry? This stuff dries my nails in seconds.

What are your favourite things to help with your DIY manicure?

Friday, 12 June 2015




Last Friday was my Graduation Ball. Instead of spending hundreds on a dress, that I will probably only wear once, I decided to stick with a firm favourite in my wardrobe from Lavish Alice and invest on my hair. Whilst I love applying my own makeup I am in no way a pro in the hair department. So when it comes to a more special occasion I'm always in need of some assistance. 

Now, I never envisaged writing a post about this experience - hence the excellent Snapchat quality saved picture! I am always apprehensive about trying somewhere new in the hair-dresser world, mainly due to a bad wowcher experience. There is only one lady I trust to do my hair and, unfortunately, I couldn't transport her from the North to London! Nevertheless the search had to begin to try and find somewhere that would create something I'm happy with. 

My Instagram searches led me to discover Blow. A salon with a menu, designed around the concept of 'Fast Beauty': literarily you are in and out within half an hour. With a lot of recommendations from bloggers I follow and noted magazines I decided to give them a go. 

As I always have my hair loose I chose the undone bun style (one of the six styles you can choose from). Usually they will wash your hair if you're having a blow dry but up styles work best on second day hair.  I was more than happy with the result and I felt (without blowing my own trumpet) that it added a bit of sophistication to my outside without the expensive dress price tag. 

I was so happy with the experience of Blow: from the hair stylists, to the products they used and just the nice, clean atmosphere! Situated centrally in Covent Garden it's super handy and I thoroughly recommend a visit. I will definitely be going again for my graduation ceremony. 

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Bourjois Rouge Edition

About a month ago, after a lot of hype, and some pretty packaging, I finally purchased the Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet and Aqua Laque. So after six months of waiting, and a month of trying, I have finally gathered my thoughts on the two. 

First, lets talk texture. The name Aqua Laque certainly represents the feel of it. Indeed, it's like putting water on the lips. It feels so weird. I'm still not sure if I like it or not. The Velvet on the other hand is a thick, creamy texture that is very easy to apply and blend. I was surprised at how smooth this felt on my lips considering it is a matt finish. 

Now in terms of pigmentation both are totally different. I would describe the Aqua Laque as a gloss. Its great if you're looking for a super, shiny gloss and I love to wear this on top of some of my natural toned lipsticks. This is, then, slightly flawed considering this product is described as a lipstick. But I will give it a thumbs up for the whole wet, shine look. The Velvet formula however is on top form when it comes to pigmentation. What I especially love about it is its stay-proof formula. This thing seriously doesn't budge. More importantly it doesn't dry out, unlike some more pricey matt products.

For under £10 I would have to conclude that the Rouge Edition Velvet is a must have. If you are looking for something that REALLY does last all day (albeit with a top up post lunch!) then this seriously is a makeup bag essential. 

Monday, 8 June 2015

Rimmel Salon Pro

It's a rare occasion that I keep the same colour manicure for over two weeks. However, the Rimmel Salon Pro formula in the shade Hip Hop has been ticking many buttons over here! Before I rave about the colour I just want to talk about the formula. It contains 'lycra' which is supposed to make this polish 'ultra flexible.' Now, I have no idea what that means in terms of effects, but I can say that the polish is very easy to apply. But ultimately it is the chip-proof quality of this polish which makes it a keeper. I took this photo after wearing it for 4 days. Despite the slight chip on one finger I think that's pretty impressive. Lets just appreciate 4 days of no chips (both hands up emoji here please!). 

In London we have been having a bit of a heat wave so the bright read/orange tones of this have helped me to channel my summer spirit. Also, if you were a fan of Chanel's summer polish Holiday then this is a perfect dupe for that famous shade. At £4.49 these polishes have to be a firm favourite for the DIY manicure. What are your favourite polishes for summer? 

Friday, 5 June 2015

Estée Lauder Base

If you're a regular reader over here then you will notice the a common feature of the Estée Lauder Base. To be precise this obsession dates back further than the beginnings of Folkes Thinks. Indeed, DayWear BB was the one that set off my heartstrings when I was 17. As I've always said, I'm not really in to the heavy base, cakey foundation routine. I always prefer something lighter and more natural. As a very light and sheer formula the DayWear was perfect for my school days. In fact writing this post has made me want to repurchase for the summer months. It has a delicious cucumber scent to it, making you feel so fresh as you apply.

Last year however, I got very excited for the launch of the Double Wear All-Day Glow BB. Despite my frustration at searching far and low (literally, I went to Fleet Street Boots, Selfridges Birmingham and Boots Teeside Park) for shade 1 I really did fall in love, again, with this purchase. I'd say its slightly more heavier coverage than the DayWear BB. This shade is more suited to my skin tone and lasts all day. I've particularly loved wearing this in the colder months.

My most recent purchase, as you will have seen, is the EE Enlighten Creme. At first I really wasn't sure about this one: I couldn't even notice applying it on my skin. However, after time I have really come to enjoy wearing this product. I would say this is one of those 'eurgh, I can't be bothered to go out but my skin needs a boost' helping kind of product! I love it when I don't want too much makeup on but want my skin to have a little umph.

Now, my aim of this post was never to conclude with a favourite. I love all of these bases and so does my skin! I have never experienced a breakout and they all contain SPF 30 or plus which is great as my moisturiser doesn't. However, if I was to only buy one forever I think I would have to say the DayWear BB, purely for its buildable coverage, and its even finish.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Foodie London

The past three years of living in London has led me to some wonderful, taste bud experimentation! Whilst I love to eat healthily I'm also a big believer in balance so I do occasionally pig out (by occasionally I mean every week!)  If you follow me on Instagram then you will definitely know what I'm on about here. I love trying new places to eat out and so I thought I would collate some of my favourite food experiences in London.

Eat Pizza.

If a friend is asking me somewhere to try for dinner I will ALWAYS say Homeslice. Firstly, because who doesn't love pizza. Secondly, I promise you will love it even more here. A huuuuuge pizza where the menu is written daily on the blackboard and your pizza is divided in two.  I thoroughly recommend half sweetcorn/chorizo and half caprese. Mmmm I'm drooling as I type.

Afternoon tea.

As you will see from my instagram, one of my favourite pastimes is to eat cake. I absolutely love the experience of Afternoon Tea and get far too excited when the waiter arrives with the sandwich tray. I recently visited Sketch and would have to give it a gold star in the Afternoon Tea books (trust me, I've tried a few)! With a seriously cool pink interior, bizarre toilets and just delicious cakes (the toasted cheese sandwich was also a bonus) this place is a must-do on a trip to London. Situated just off Regents Street its a handy location for when you've finished your retail therapy.

Go Raw.

My beautiful friend Kathryn (check out her foodie Instagram) is my inspiration when it comes to raw goodness. She introduced me to the wonderful creations produced by the Wild Food Cafe. Raw cake is absolutely delicious from this place, seriously you'll find you and your date scraping the plate with your fingers. Who needs normal cake when it can taste this good! Tucked away in Neals Yard this place has a lovely atmosphere.

Try a Doughnut.

One of my favourite things to do in London is to stroll around Borough Market. For some reason I find it very relaxing looking at the many varieties of food and searching for samples! But my favourite stand has to be Bread Ahead. Here they sell the most delicious doughnuts I have ever tasted. From velvet chocolate to honeycomb crumb, they offer a variety of flavours and they're just oozing with delicious chocolate cream. Whilst this is a highly calorific treat, everyone once in a while can't hurt right?!

I'm always up for trying new food and restaurants, any recommendations?

Monday, 1 June 2015

Topshop Silver Spoon

The other day I could resist but pick up this Topshop polish in the shade Silver Spoon. As it wasn't a shade of blue I felt the purchase was justified. I definitely need to widen the range of colour in my nail polish collection. A lilacy, silvery colour, it just stood out to me as different. At first I was a little disappointed that it had a matt-ike texture (you know I'm all about the shiny topcoat) but fell in love as I realised the meaning behind its name. It catches the light so well, enhancing the silvery tones of the polish. I think this is going to be a firm favourite in my collection. Unfortunately there wasn't a link online for this so hopefully you can find it in your local Topshop!

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