Monday, 30 December 2013

Smokey eye essentials

Its party season and that means lots of smokey eye occasions. A smokey eye can be hard to perfect or even start to tackle, so i thought i'd give you a run down of my favourite tools and shadows for a smokey eye. Pens at the ready.

Brushes are a major part in getting your smokey eye just right, and i rely on 5 to complete the job.
h&m fluffy eyeshadow brush - for washing colour all over the lid and outer v. Blends the edges as it deposits colour.
boots fluffy eyeshadow brush - another one with no name, sorry about that. this one is slightly smaller than the h&m favourite and is great for putting colour right where you want it in the outer corner and crease.
real techniques base shadow brush - also great for crease work and smudging eyeshadow along the lower lashline. Can also be used to pack colour onto the lid.
mac 239 - for adding shadow to the top and bottom lashline to thicken lashes. works particularly well at creating a subtle eyeshadow cat flick.
mac 217 - you didn't think i could write about smokey eyes without mentioning this one did you? a must have brush, especially great for blending out all the edges, but can also be used for all the other jobs too if you have a couple on hand. love.

prepping the lid
I'm not big on eyeshadow primer, applying a little concealer all over the lid seems to do the trick for me, but if you need a little more staying power then using a cream eyeshadow as a base works wonders.
For matte smokey eyes - Mac groundwork paint pot is a light brown colour which works well to counteract any redness, hide veins and add some colour to the lid ready for your smokey eye, its also a great one to have in your collection to add definition on minimal makeup days! If your smokey eye is going to be cool toned, then the maybelline colour tattoo in permanent taupe would be a great option too. This would also work great for purple smokey eyes.
For bronze smokey eyes - mac eclair paint pot is my one cream eyeshadow love, its warm deep bronze/brown colour looks great with any makeup look, but unfortunately it is limited edition. If you have it, pop it on to enhance your smokey eye, but if not, i'm sure mac do similar bronze shades. The maybelline colour tattoo in on and on bronze is a more taupe toned bronze but works in the same way.
For black smokey eyes - The maybelline colour tattoo in timeless black is a great opaque black cream shadow with extremely subtle navy shimmer. its great used as a base or as a cream liner. you can also sheer it out to make it more grey.
Olive or cranberry/copper smokey eyes - for a green toned look, i opt for the bourjois colour edition eyeshadow in the khaki tone. Mine has no name on it, so unfortunately i cannot tell you what its actually called. oops. It's a lovely khaki green with gold shimmer which makes it very wearable. If your opting for a more burgundy toned eye look then the maybelline colour tattoo in metallic pomegranate is a cranberry shade with silver shimmer which works great with MAC cranberry or coppering.

Now, when it comes to eyeshadows, most brands have some great shades available. Palette wise, The naked palettes are a great place to start if your just trialing smokey eyes, with the naked 2 palette being my favourite, or the naked basics if you prefer mattes. Nars are also great at their eyeshadows, and the limited edition palettes 'fairys kiss', 'ride up to the moon' and 'and god created the woman' all contain excellent shades to create a range of smokey eye looks. If your looking to customise your colour combination slightly more, then MAC is the place to look. For smokey eyes, i love black tied, woodwinked, coppering, cranberry, amber lights, antiqued paired with brun, wedge or folie to smoke it out.

Eyeliner and mascara
Eyeliner and mascara play a big part in completing your smokey eye. A sweep of eyeliner across your top lashline will work to thicken lashes and finish off your whole look. I love the topshop magic liner and the collection extreme felt tip liner, as they're both felt tip nibbed liners which are extremely easy to use. On the waterline adding in something like the rimmel scandaleyes kohl in bronze can really help to make the look more sultry.
As for mascara, if you arent using false lashes then you will need lashings of it to create volume and length, My favourites for this are revlon grow luscious and l'oreal volume million lashes. They're both great at creating volume and length in only one or two coats.

Lastly, i wanted to give a quick mention to the brows. With a smokey eye, filling in your brows is essential to make sure they stand out against the dark eyeshadow, but at the same time - don't go overboard, they aren't the star of the show.

Hopefully this has helped you out of a smokey eye rut and made the whole ordeal a little bit simplier and seamless!

Friday, 13 December 2013

Current wishlist

current wishlist
Lately, i have been amazing at saving money - if i do say so myself. All this has meant I've built up quite a wishlist, so i thought i'd share with you my most wanted. I've asked for a few for Christmas, and the rest i will definitely be buying myself, so expect outfit posts and reviews!

These coated leigh jeans are something which i feel i really need in my wardrobe. with it being so cold out, 80% of the time i'll be wearing some form of jean or trouser, so having these would mean i can wear a pair of jeans whilst still feeling put together. The check trousers are also a 100% necessity to me, the perfect partner to a cosy jumper or black crop top and furry jacket.

The jeffrey cambell scullys are an unlikely purchase, as i'm trying to only buy things i know i'll get the use out of, which is allowing me to invest in more expensive pieces and i feel like this is the best way to be! I have asked for these for christmas though, but sadly i don't think they'll be here in time (boo).

The velvet dress and pvc skirt are both from missguided, a site i fall more and more in love with by the day. The velvet dress is a top contender for either my Christmas or new years outfit, and will be in my grasps as soon as its back in stock! Paired with a red lip, which will be fulfilled by a ysl glossy stain no less, and i'm good to go. The PVC skirt is another *i need it in my wardrobe right now* item as i think it looks so chic paired with a pastel jumper like in the picture, and its a pretty good bargain!

Finally, the fur jacket. The one i have my eyes on is from sheinside, but due to the fact i don't think i can wait that long, i think i'm going to have to look elsewhere! or maybe i should just be less impatient...

what are you lusting after lately?


MAC chili lipstick

Mac chili is a lipstick I've loved for a long time, i'm shocked i haven't reviewed it yet! Chili is a brownish orange toned red, a bit deeper than the likes of russian red and a lot more warm toned. I find this sort of shade compliments my warm tanned skin tone well, but i can also see it looking stunning on paler girls.It's a matte finish lipstick with a smooth, buttery formula which means it glides over the lips easily although i will say a lip balm is necessary underneath so that dry patches aren't accentuated. Chili is a great lipstick choice if you don't want to have to keep touching up, as i find this lasts an extremely long time on the lips. Once it has set it just doesn't budge! Even with eating and drinking i'd say it lasts about 4 hours, although there will be some fading. This is my current go to daytime red lip as there's something quite autumnal and effortless about it. The brown tones on it mean it isn't too bright which is perfect for the day time.  I was hoping to do a lip swatch, but unfortunately i'm having some problems with awfully chapped lips at the moment, so here is a great photo i found online.


Thursday, 12 December 2013

NARS laguna bronzer

Its a late one, but i've had these photos of my favourite bronzer, NARS laguna, sat on my laptop for months now, so its about time i blogged about it (lazy blogger problems)! Nars laguna is a bronzer which i'm sure you've heard about, so i won't go on about it too much, but i'd describe it as a warm toned brown which is not orange in the slightest, and is a great multi use product. For me, i can use this for contouring, to warm up the outer perimeters of my face, or very lightly dusted all over for a subtle warmth. Most people describe this as a matte bronzer, but there is a very subtle gold micro shimmer running through it, which is mostly undetectable, but under the autumn sun, can be quite obvious if you use a lot. For this reason i would say this is more of a spring/summer bronzer if you want to use it more for contouring reasons. For me this is the perfect bronzing shade, and i would say its suitable for most skin tones, but if you have quite pale pink toned skin then i do not think this would work for you, but for more yellow toned pale girls, don't be afraid of it! Overall i think it's a stable to have in your collection, and i'm not sure what i did before it!

Monday, 2 December 2013

Faux fur, leather and coltranes

Faux fur jacket - H&M // t shirt - zara // scarf - zara // trousers - topshop (a year or so ago) // boots - jeffrey campbell coltranes // lipstick - mac ronnie red (LE)

About 6 months ago i completely sorted out my clothes and bagged a load up to sell on ebay, but until now i never had a chance to actually go it. When sorting through the mounds of clothing i came across these faux leather trousers from topshop which were too small for me last year, and as i could not bare to part with them i tried them on again in the hope they would now fit, and what do you know - they did! I've worn them numerous times since then as they're so comfy and casual, yet they make a simple outfit a little more interesting. This faux fur jacket was a great investment as I've worn it at least a few times a week. It's so so warm and cosy but not too heavy so its perfect for the really cold but not freezing weather we're having. This scarf is another new addition, my boyfriend bought it for me as an early christmas present a few days ago as i've been eyeing it up for weeks, and it has not been taken off since (except when inside, obviously...), chuffed with it!

My boyfriend flat is the perfect place to take indoor outfit pictures so hopefully i will be able to post a lot more even when its awful weather outside - so stay tuned! xxxx

Friday, 22 November 2013

Pieces i'm loving #1 + update

trends i'm loving #1
I've just made a polyvore account as i want to start sharing with you some pieces/trends i'm loving lately and cannot wait to incorporate into my outfits. A couple of these pieces i own; the checked zara dress, the faux fur jacket and items similar to the cream jumper, the skort and the tartan scarf. the rest are very high up on my wishlist and will be purchased asap, when i have some spare money for myself (ah christmas)!
Leather, fur, tartan, lingerie style clothing, monochrome and dark colours are all things i'm loving for the autumn and i'm sure i'll love these styles through to the winter too.
Although i love beauty, fashion is something i'm much more interested in at the moment, so whilst i'll still be doing reviews on here and tutorials and beauty videos on my youtube, i'm going to make an effort to film more lookbooks/OOTD's and post more fashion on here too. Makeup is something i don't bother with every day so it's not always interesting to post about, but fashion - i love to dress up!

I'm in the process of cutting down my makeup and getting rid of some of my clothes as a capsule wardrobe and makeup collection is something i lust for as it makes everything so much more simple. Check out my depop (@xodjosells) and my ebay (crypticcultclothing) as i'll be selling things on there a few times a week, loads of things currently up on depop!

Anyway, let me know how you feel about this change! It won't make much difference, except it will mean i'll be able to post more frequently when i think about it. 

Thursday, 21 November 2013

What's on my face #3

Another whats on my face post, this one a little more catered to the chilly weather your having. Autumn is a time when i start bringing out the darker shades, and this look definitely reflects that. I've whipped out my ysl touché eclat foundation, and paired with the bobbi brown corrector and concealer, it makes a pretty flawless, natural yet glowing base - love! Nars liberté blush is another favourite of mine, i haven't been able to stop wearing it over the past few weeks as its just the perfect autumn blush to warm up the face but it still has the red tones to it which makes it a little more autumnal. This lip combo is new to my collection, but i love it and have worn it a few times already. This lipstick is a great dark lipstick to wear if you don't want a berry toned red as there are no berry tones in sight. I also tried out my new topshop magic liner, which is actually a really great liner. I've never really tried anything other than my collection 2000 extreme felt tip liner but this definitely trumps it. it's so easy to use as the nib is so fine, definitely one for the cack handed among us!

products used:
Yves Saint Laurent le teint touché eclat foundation // Bobbi Brown corrector peach // Bobbi Brown creamy concealer natural // Rimmel stay matte powder // Hourglass brow sculpting pencil dark brown // ELF wet gloss lash and brow clear mascara // Clinique chubby stick for eyes in fuller fudge // Topshop magic liner // Revlon grow luscious mascara // Nars laguna bronzer // Nars liberté blush // Estee Lauder powder gelée in heatwave // Mac burgundy lip pencil // Mac media lipstick


Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Living proof straight styling spray a.k.a a frizzy haired girls best friend

As winter creeps upon us, comes with it the damp mornings and light showers. All this plays major havoc with my hair, as even with an umbrella there's no avoiding some kind of frizz occurring. i recently picked up the living proof straight styling spay in a bid to rid me of frizz, and i have to say so far it's doing the trick. Living proof straight spray aims to protect hair against humidity to stop frizz and decrease the amount of styling you need to do over the week, and repel grime so that you can go longer between washing your hair. Although i don't find this product to help when i'm rained on, it definitely helps protect my hair from the damp, humid or muggy air, and it also helps to keep my style in place so that i don't need to straighten my hair every single morning, and that, for me, is a great result. It can also be used on wet or dry hair, so if i need to re-straighten my hair at all, i can top up with this again. I have to say i can't be 100% sure that it helps you go longer between washes, as i use this in conjunction with the living proof prime style extender which is also meant to help with that, but i do know that with the current haircare routine i'm in, i only have to wash my hair once or twice a week! Perfect for a lazy girl like me.

Monday, 28 October 2013

Oribe dry texturizing spray

I didn't think i'd like this little can of expensive spray as much as i do, but unfortunately, I really like it. Really really like it.

The oribe dry texturizing spray is a kind of dry shampoo/hairspray/texurizing spray hybrid which basically gives your hair a huge dose of volume and texture whilst removing any grease whilst its at it. Due to the ridiculously high price tag, i vowed to only use this on important occasions or bad hair days, but its somehow worked its way into my daily hair routine. What i love about it is that it's great for fixing any hair problems. I mainly use this when i've just washed my hair, when its flat, soft, fluffy and ridiculously difficult to style. I focus the spray in my roots and fringe area as this is where the main problem lies, and afterwards i'm left with messy but not unruly, texturised hair. This spray gives the hair a bit of grit and hold like that of 2nd or 3rd day hair, which is when my hair styles the best, but without the horrible greasiness. The holding properties help to keep the hair is place once its been poofed to perfection, so i don't find i really need to top up during the day, just re-poof. As it's also a dry shampoo, it's great for removing the grease from my hair, but its completely clear, so it doesn't give my dark hair a horrid grey tinge like other dry shampoos do. This product is a saviour as washing my hair is such a chore, so it means i can go that little bit longer between washes without worrying that i look like i don't own a shower. It also means that when it does come to hair washing day, I don't have to worry about having a fluffball on my hair for the day to follow.

The only downside? The high price tag. This little bottle cost £18, and the full size costs a whopping £38. That's a lot for for whats basically a fancy hairspray. Regardless of this, i know i'll be buying the full size pretty soon and keeping this little one as a handbag essential, as now I've used it i know i can't be without it in my routine. It's safe to say this has pretty much made it up to holy grail status. Sigh, why couldn't i have hated it?

What do you think of the oribe dry texturizing spray? is it love or is it overhyped?

Sunday, 27 October 2013

My MAC eyeshadow palettes

Over the past year or so i seem to have collected enough mac eyeshadows to fill a whole palette - how this happened i do not know, but it's happened, so i thought i'd share with you the colours which i own! I rarely reach for my big mac eyeshadow palette (the 15 pan one), but my smaller mac eyeshadow palette is something i reach for most days i'm wearing eyeshadow. I'm not too much of an eyeshadow wearer, i much prefer a bold lip, but every now and again i'll have an urge to wear a smokey eye, and now its coming to autumn i think its a look i'll be opting for more and more. Hopefully writing this post and seeing the swatches side by side will give me some inspiration to use them more!

starting off with my big mac palette, going row by row i have: grain, a peachy cream eyeshadow with a satin finish, which is nice as a brow bone highlight, as its quite subtle. next is expensive pink, an eyeshadow i've actually only ever used once. It's a pinky coral shade with gold shimmer running all the way through. in most lights the pink is quite subtle, but i'm still struggling to find a way to wear it! The next eyeshadow is texture, which was originally in my quad but was swapped out as i didn't find myself reaching for it all that much. It's a warm brown shade, similar to that of a light bronzer, which is great for smokey eyes but for everyday i find it a little too warm, especially as i mostly use bronze shades. I do think i'll get a little more use out of it now it's autumn though. Next, amber lights, a warm golden amber shade with a slight bronze tinge to it. this is such a lovely eyeshadow to use all over the lid for the basis of a smokey eye. Following on is one of my favourites, satin taupe. Satin taupe is a grey/purple toned eyeshadow, which can look slightly brown, especially when blended out. This makes it really wearable and a really easy to wear eyeshadow as it creates definition to the lids all on its own. Next up is coppering, a coppery red shade with a lovely shimmer running through it. This one is a great alternative to cranberry if you find cranberry is just too red for you. Speaking of cranberry, it's the next one in my palette. It's a gorgeous purple burgundy shade with an almost pink shimmer to it. It can be quite difficult to wear but it looks particularly lovely all over the lid with sketch or brun in the crease - tutorial? Next up is a bit of a different one for me, Fig. 1. As you can probably tell from the picture it is untouched, but i bought it for the purpose of a tutorial which i have yet to film. It's a muted true purple shade, still bright, but not in your face. Following on is antiqued, which i REALLY do not wear enough. It's a gorgeous coppery dark bronze shade which is perfect for this time of year, and it's one of those shadows you can swipe on, blend and your done. Love. Next up is folie, a warm brown shade, very similar in tone to texture but darker. This is a great crease colour to pair with warmer toned eyeshadows. Onto the final two in this palette, the next one is embark, a dark warm brown shade which in some lights looks like it has a slight purple tinge. Strange but lovely! Finally, one if the most interesting eyeshadows i own, black tied. Black tied is a black eyeshadow with finely milled silver glitter running all the way through it. It looks like it has a slight navy tint to it which makes it even more interesting. This is such a great colour for the party season to make a dark smokey eye more interesting!

So, that's my big palette, next onto my quad where i put 4 of my every day colours. First up is retrospeck,  a super shimmery champagne pearl colour with a slight green leaning to it. It's not actually green, but i can definitely see a little green in it. I love it all over the lid to brighten the eye, or as a brow bone and inner corner highlight. Next is wedge, my go to crease colour. It's a slightly cool toned light brown which can be built up slightly darker. I think this would be a great brow colour for light-mid brown haired people. Next is my brow colour, brun. Its a dark neutral toned brown. This is my perfect brow shade as it makes my eyebrows look full and defined but not harsh. This is also what i use in the crease when i want a darker crease. Finally, woodwinked. Woodwinked is a great all over the lid colour, as it does all the work for you. It's a highly pigmented light bronze/brown shade with golden shimmer running through it. Once blended out you can really see the bronze/brown at the edges which helps to define the eye all by itself. Definitely one of my favourites.

I hope this has given you a little inspiration into what eyeshadows you might want to try from mac! Let me know any of your favourites as there are a fair few i have my eye on!


Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Maybelline 24hr colour tattoo's

I've been a fan of the maybelline colour tattoos since their release, and consider the shade 'on and on bronze' to be one of my favourite 'slap on and go eyeshadow' products, but since the purchase of my much loved mac 'eclair' paint pot, they've shunted to the back of the draw, up until now.

I recently had a complete sort out my my makeup collection and discovered a fair few forgotten loves, these being one of them. I soon scurried off to my local boots to pick up two new shades to try out for future smokey eye tutorials (coming soon): timeless black and metallic pomegranate. Now that i have a fair few in my collection, i thought i'd give them a little shout out and mini review.

Firstly, my favourite shade, on and on bronze. This one is a gorgeous cool toned almost taupe bronze shade, the opposite to mac eclair which is very very warm toned. i find that patted onto the lid and then blended out with fingers, this makes the eyes look 'done' whilst still being fairly subtle. It also gives the eyes slight dimension with it somehow managing to look darker in the crease and more shimmery in the centre. You can of course build this shade up to make it more dramatic, and it also looks great layered under other bronze shades (eg. mac woodwinked).

The rest of the shades are less wearable (in my opinion), but all great colours and of great quality. Permanent taupe is, as the name suggests, a taupe shade. It's grey with a slight hint of brown which means it doesnt make your eyes look too flat. It's completely matte, and works well as a basis for a cool toned smokey eye or paired with a purple lip. Metallic pomegranate is very similar to mac 'cranberry' eyeshadow but slightly more burgundy toned. it has silver shimmer in it which is quite subtle but helps to make it stand out more. This looks great paired with deep purple eyeshadows and cranberry which i mentioned earlier. Timeless black is an interesting shade, its pretty much matte black, but if you look closely you can see the tiniest amount of navy shimmer, which basically makes no difference once on the lid. This again is great for bold smokey eyes, or for making eyeshadows stand out more when used as a base.
Pink gold is probably my least favourite of the bunch, but that's mainly down to the fact that pink tones on my eyes are a no go. It's a baby pink shade with silver shimmer running through (probably should have been called pink silver?) It just looks a little strange against my complexion but have seem it looking lovely on some people.

All of the colour tattoo's last a long time on my eyelids with no creasing or fading. I'd say they last a full day so around 8 hours before i see some difference. I'd definitely recommend them, they're great value for money and can be used in so many ways.

Monday, 21 October 2013

Whats on my face #2

I haven't done a whats on my face post since july - say whaaaat?! I love doing these posts and seeing how my make-up style changes so i'll defnitely try and do them more often. Today i went for quite a simple look with a dark bold lip as i wanted to try out my new nars lipstick.

I kept the skin really natural and dewy using the laura mericer foundation primer in radiance, giorgio armani luminous silk foundation, nars radiant creamy concealer and the mac mineralize skinfinish in lightscapade. I never usually bother with primer but i wanted my makeup to last all day today, and as i was wearing a dark lip i needed to add some extra radiance to my skin so it didn't look flat and lifeless in contrast. For the cheeks i used my much loved nars laguna bronzer to warm up my face (i cant believe i only just tried this a couple of months ago, definitely holy grail!) as it just gives me a really natural sunkissed look whilst still defining my cheekbones enough to give me a little bit of shape. I also used the nars blush in liberté which is just a gorgeous red-peach shade, a perfect alternative to coral for the autumn. I applied a really light wash just to give my cheeks a bit of life without it being too overpowering. I recently purchased the jouer highlighter and i must say i absolutely love it. I found my mac pearl cream colour base would look slightly cakey if applied over blush but this just blends in like a dream and look really natural but still gives me a lovely glow.

For the eyes, I've gone back to using powder on my brows. I wen't through a phase of using my hourglass brow sculpting pencil again, and then i tried out the l'oreal brow artiste, but my mac eyeshadow in brun always reigns supreme for brows as its just so quick and easy to apply, and defines my brows nicely without being too harsh. I then set them with a new product, the maybelline brow drama brow gel. I have the shade dark brown and although i haven't tried using this on its own, i find that when applied over the powder it helps my brows to look a little less flat and drawn on, and just gives them a bit of fullness. On my eyeballs i used a slight bit of mac wedge eyeshadow right in the crease to define slightly, and i then applied the revlon grow luscious mascara to my top and bottom lashes. I always forget how much i love this mascara, one coat gives so much volume and its actually surprisingly easy to apply to the bottom lashes.

And now for the star of the show, The nars pure matte lipstick in volga. I purchased this on a whim when i ordered my nars 'ride up to the moon' palette as i refuse to pay for shipping, but i actually love it. It's matte, but when applied over a balm it glides on super easily and is really pigmented. In this picture its faded slightly as it was taken a couple hours after i applied my makeup, but you can see it freshly applied in todays earlier post. This is definitely going to be one of my most worn autumn lipsticks.

So, there we have it, todays (well, saturdays) face.

Mac 'lightscapade' mineralize skinfinish

In the past when browsing through the mac store, the mineralize skinfinish in 'lightscapade' was never one which caught my eye. The fact that it was almost white in tone with blue flecks made me think it would be far too pale on my skintone as a highlight, and when swatched it never seemed the most pigmented. A few months back i watched one of kate from gh0stparties videos and she mentioned that she was using this product an all over finishing powder, much like the everloved and highly expensive hourglass ambient lighting powders. With that in mind the next time i visited a mac counter, out came my card and into my bag went lightscapade.

Lightscapade, as mentioned earlier, is shimmery pearly white with a very slight yellow/champagne tone, and blue and pink veins running through, which are undetectable once applied. I tend to dust this all over my face to set my makeup, and it just gives my skin a subtle glow and sheen without being too much. That being said, if i use too dense of a brush then it can look a little disco ball like in the t-zone. I don't find it all that effective as a highlight at all, but i definitely think its one to look into if your looking at the ambient lighting powders but they're out of your budget. At £22 its almost half the price of said hourglass powders, so definitely worth trying out. I actually tend to reach for this one more as i'm scared to use the other one up, ha, logic.

Sunday, 20 October 2013

The Body Shop 'colour crush' lipstick shade 110

I've never really taken an interest in the body shop. It's one of those places that I've always thought is expensive for no reason so although i do like some of their products, i never really bother with it. I recently decided to check it out due to seeing a few bloggers mention some of there products, namely the bronzer, and was pleasantly surprised by what i found.

The new colour crush lipstick line is made up of 24 super pigmented glossy shades, and with shades ranging from reds to pinks to oranges to nudes, there really does seem to be a colour for everyone. They've brought out some really modern bright shades which i wouldn't normally expect from the body shop. The colour i chose was the shade 110, a gorgeous muted peachy coral shade which is a great every day shade for me.
The formula of these lipsticks is great, they contain cherry seed oil and marula oil which help to condition the lips and mean that the lipsticks all glide on with ease and don't cling to any dry patches.

Recently my lips have been extremely dry, to the extent where i could hardly wear any lip products because they all looked terrible over the dry flakey patches, but this lipstick was a saviour as it masked the dry patches and the glossy finish meant they didn't dry out more.

At £10 each they aren't the cheapest of lipsticks, but for the quality i definitely recommend them and can see myself buying a few more colours from the range.

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Nars 'Ride up to the moon' limited edition eyeshadow palette


Nars is a brand which has swiftly worked its way up to possibly being my favourite makeup brand overall. There just isnt a product i've try from them which i dislike, and this palette is definitely high up in the ranks of must haves. The nars 'ride up to the moon' palette is one of two limited edition eyeshadow palettes nars have brought out for autumn, the other being 'fairys kiss', a more purple toned palette (next on my wishlist).

The ride up to the moon palette contains six highly pigmented shades, five permanent and one limited edition. Shades from l-r, top row then bottom: argentina (LE), isolde, night porter, biarritz, fez and cordura.
The palette includes one matte and one shimmer highlight shade, a shimmery amber shade, a brown bronze shade, and two more interesting shades - an almost black, metallic forest green shade and a darkest brown shade with gold glitter. This palette includes an interesting array, but the shades all work extremely well together.

This palette was my first dip into the nars eyeshadow pool, and i must say i'm really impressed. The colours are all buttery soft and extremely pigmented, as well as being blendable and builable. I created a smokey eye with this palette which i then wore to a gig, and upon return around 6 hours later, my eyeshadow looked exactly as before, with creasing or fading, and if i wasnt off to bed i'm sure it would have lasted a lot longer.

If you already own a lot of nars eyeshadows and use them a lot, you may find that this palette is rather small and may be disappointed to see you may already own some of the shades, but for someone like me who likes to try out new things, these smaller shadows are perfect as i know i'd never be able to use up a whole eyeshadow pan. For £32 this palette is rather affordable in my eyes considering a nars eyeshadow single costs £18 and you get to try out six shades.

This palette is limited edition so if your interested in it (which you should be) i'd highly recommend you get your hands on it FAST before its gone!

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Superfacialist rose hydrate creamy cleanser

I'm not often one to try out cheaper skincare brands, simply because skincare is far more important than makeup to me, and i'd rather know that what i'm putting on my skin is actually benefiting it and the ingredients are of good quality. The superfacialist line by Una Brennan is one of the only skincare brands from boots I've tried, other than Simple and La Roche-Posay, and i must say so far I've been really impressed, and this cleanser is no exception. 

The superfacialist Rose Calming Creamy Cleanser is a gentle cream cleanser which aims to thoroughly cleanse the skin whilst leaving it hydrated and more radiant. It's formulated with moisturising Shea and Cocoa butters plus Pro Vitamin B5 which works to remove make-up, debris and oils, all without drying out the skin.
Marshmallow and Allantoin further help to soothe and restore skin’s natural ph balance, meaning that this cleanser is great for even sensitive skins to use.

I've been using this cleanser pretty much every morning for a week or two now and its been such a pleasure to use. The colder weather has meant that foam cleansers are far too stripping for my skin now, so this cleanser is a nice middle ground between a foaming cleanser and a balm. Applied onto dry skin and massaged in, it removes all dirt and skincare from the night before, and once washed off my skin feels fresh and clean, whilst feeling just as soft and hydrated as if i'd have used a balm cleanser, without the heavy feeling. When i use this, i do feel like my skin looks slightly more radiant than when i use other cleansers, which is always a bonus. I have used this in the evening, but i don't really find it all that great at removing makeup, so i tend to save it for mornings and use my balms in the evening.  

This cleanser has a slight rose sent, but its only very subtle so should be fine for skins sensitive to fragrance. I'd definitely recommend this cleanser to anyone with normal, dry or dehydrated skin looking for a refreshing but hydrating cleanser, or to oilier skin types looking for an alternative to a heavy balm. At only 7.99 for 150ml, this is a bargain product. 

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Nars satin lipsick in toledé

This lipstick was rather an impulse buy.  I was browsing the Space NK store (that place always sucks me in) and i decided it was time to try a few more Nars bits and pieces. Having never head much about or tried one of the lipsticks they have on offer, i thought i'd take a risk and pick up toledé, a pinky nude shade, as i'd been looking for a new subtle nude for a while now.

Nars toledé lipstick is described as a 'pink rose' with a distinct warm tone. On me it pulls more nude than rosy but on lighter skintones it would be distinctly more pink. It has a lovely satin finish and a soft, creamy texture which glides on with ease and leaves my dry lips feeling comforatable. The colour payoff is rather opaque, but the sheen means its not too bold or overpowering, and it leaves your lips looking quite natural, enhancing your overall look, not being the centre of it. These qualities make this lipstick the perfect your lips but better shade for me, meaning its become a staple in my makeup bag. This lipstick would be perfect for a minimal makeup day, school, or to tie a smokey eye look together. With the texture being so creamy you'd think it would have poor lasting powder, but i find this lipstick lasts a good 4 hours on the lips, and survives drinking and eating relatively well. I do still tend to reapply it though as my lips feel so comfortable and hydrated with it on!

The only downside is that this lipstick costs £18.50 and you get a very small amount of product, so if you wore this everyday it would not last all that long. For me, i like to switch between bold and nude lips day to day, so it will last slightly longer, but if your on more of a budget and like to stick to just one lipstick, then it may not be for you. 

I love this lipstick and could not recommend it enough to anyone looking for a subtle everyday shade or avid smokey eye wearers looking for the perfect lip colour to pair with them. This lipstick would suit so many skintones, and i'm so happy i decided to take a risk and buy it. I can definitely see myself repurchasing!

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Nars pure radiant tinted moisturiser

The NARS pure radiant tinted moisturiser is something which I've wanted to try for a good while now, but i never really thought i needed due to the fact i already owned a couple other tinted moisturisers. After seeing Victoria from In the Frow talk about it and how she was taking it travelling with her, i realised i had a NARS shaped whole in the heart and i went out to get it almost immediately. Just my luck it was out of stock for almost the whole of summer, but once i got my hands on it, it was a lifesaver and i really could not be happier with my purchase.

The Nars pure radiant tinted moisturiser is a great everyday base for those not looking for too much coverage. I'd say its a light to medium coverage, but can be built up slightly to a medium coverage without becoming too cakey or heavy. What i love about this is that its the perfect tone for my skin. Often tinted moisturisers are too pink toned which means i never really opt for them on a daily bases unless there's really no need for foundation, but this is the perfect balance between yellow and pink toned. I'd say it leans a little to the yellow side of things, but its pretty much neutral. It's also beautifully radiant on the skin. Not to the extent that your going to look like a disco ball, but it gives your skin such a natural looking healthy glow which just really brightens up your complexion.

For a tinted moisturiser i find this lasts surprisingly well on my skin. I wear this to college and it lasts all day without making me look shiny, with only a powder in the morning to set and once midday to keep it looking fresh. This may not be the case for oily/combination skinned girls as i do have relatively normal/dehydrated skin which only really gets oily with heavier bases, but i think its well worth the few extra powders. Another thing, i never really find tinted moisturisers to actually be moisturising, rather just comfortable, but when i apply this my skin instantly feels less tight and full of life.

The thing which really persuaded me to get it was the SPF. It has SPF 30 and offers broad-spectrum sun protection against both UVA and UVB rays, so when i use this i don't have to worry about applying an spf separately unless i'm going to be under harsh direct sunlight from a long period of time, which is lets face it, never. This makes it a great choice for the summer and also for school/college as i can slap it on in a hurry and know its protecting and moisturising my skin. The Nars pure radiant tinted moisturiser costs £28, but for the amount you get it's definitely worth it, as you only need the smallest amount to cover your whole face. I can see this lasting me through to next summer, even using it almost every day!

The only niggle i have is that the shade range is slightly off. I'm the shade medium1, St. Moritz, whereas i'm usually shade medium3 in the Nars sheer glow, which means if your really pale then it may not be the best choice, but if you have darker skin than me then this product will be a life saver as it can be so so hard to find dark tinted moisturisers.

So, all in all, there's nothing bad i can really say about this product. I love it, and its definitely my new holy grail base as i rarely ever wear foundation on a day to day basis now that my skin has hugely improved. I'd definitely recommend this if your in the market for a new light base as this does everything you could need in a base product and is just lovely to use.


Thursday, 12 September 2013

Maybelline Baby Lips lip balm range

The release of the Maybelline Baby Lips lip balms has been eagerly awaited and a long time coming in the UK, and when they finally hit the shelves of boots and superdrug, everyone went crazy. Even with restock after restock, they still continue to sell out, and there must be a reason why - are they overhyped or are they really worth it? I picked up the whole range to review.

Starting off with the price, as this is really one of the best things about them - the price point really is within everyone's budgets. At only £2.99 each and with them constantly being on 3 for 2 or buy one get one half price, it only cost £12 for all 6 bringing them down to £2 each.

Onto the balms themselves, there are 3 clear lip balms, and 3 tinted balms, with each carrying a different scent. Starting off with the clear balms, there's 'hydrate', an everyday hydrating balm, 'intense care', a more, dare i say it, intense version of hydrate with a creamier formula, and then there's 'mint fresh' which is their minty offering, much like hydrate but with a minty taste and smell, which probably aims to freshen your breath. Out of the three, i like mint fresh the least, as i'm not all that keen on mint but its a nice concept and mint lovers will surely appreciate it. Hydrate is the one i find myself reaching for the most as it smells amazing and hydrates my lips without smothering them in balm, intense care is also lovely but i apply this one is best suited for when my lips are really dry or at night as it has a richer texture. They all have SPF 20 which is great to see from a drugstore balm. They're great to protect your lips from the sun if they're sensitive or they burn.

The tinted balms are the ones i like the least overall, as the colours aren't really for me. 'Cherry me' is the pinky red option and my favourite out of the bunch, it leaves my lips soft and glides over dry patches whilst leaving behind a subtle bitten red kind of look. i find myself reaching for this almost every day at college. 'Peach kiss' is a peachy coloured balm with shimmer, which i think is what puts me off. I love a bit of peach, but the colour is very sheer and the shimmer is quite noticeable. I think the point is to make your lips look shiny and full, but in the sun you can really see the shimmer which isn't my thing - i prefer a matte lip or at most a bit of shine. My least favourite of the bunch is 'pink punch', which is a blue toned pink shade. This one is the most pigmented, and if your pale or cooler toned then this may work for you, but on me it looks very light and too blue. it really does not suit my complexion at all, and it clings to all my dry patches making them look worse. it also seems to have a slightly matter finish than the rest, so i find it the least moisturising. 

All in all, i love the baby lips. Although there are a couple that don't work for me personally in terms of colour, they're all moisturising which is exactly what their purpose is. 4/6 isn't bad, considering i got two free anyway! I do think the hype has been a bit crazy, but i do think its worth it as they're lovely affordable products. I really hope they bring over some more of the shades as there are some which seem amazing, especially the coral offering.

which ones your favourite?


Friday, 6 September 2013

The desk tour + UPDATE!


So, a bit of a different post, and my first one in about a month (i'll get onto that at the end of the post), but i thought i'd share with you one of my favourite parts of my room, other than my wardrobe, which is my desk. My desk houses many wonderful things, my makeup, my skincare, my perfumes  and it also is the place where i get things done and keep myself organised.
So, here's a run through of how i organise everything. To the left you can see a blackboard, i use that to plan out my month in terms of videos and blog posts, and i also note down any really important dates (its even colour coded, that's my inner nerd coming out...). In front of that i just keep my perfumes in a clear muji storage container and also a yankee candle as otherwise i have no way to keep the board up and i really have nowhere else to put them anyway so it works!

In the middle of the desk is where i keep my muji storage drawers which house all my favourite/ everyday makeup essentials, along with a couple extras. I keep things in there so that if i'm in a rush i don't have to search through everything and i know where my favourite things are straight away. I also keep a couple non-makeup everyday essentials on top, and some flowers, of course. 

The tall white stand you see is what houses all my skincare, along with a few jewellery pieces and all the things i want to blog about. I got this from homesense and i think its meant to be for the kitchen to house sauces but it works perfectly to keep all my skincare neat and easy to get to. If you'd like me to go through the muji storage or my skincare collection in more detail in a video then let me know! Inside the drawers of my desk is where i keep all my other makeup, but i already have a makeup collection video up on my youtube which you can check out here.

So that's basically my desk, The lamp, desk and chair are all from ikea, and the blackboard is from ebay. My desk is never usually this neat as i just throw everything and anything onto it but when it is neat its such a productive workspace.


Thursday, 1 August 2013

Budget buy | L'oreal volume million lashes mascara

L'oreal volume million lashes has been my favourite mascara for over a year now, so i thought it was about time i review it. For a drugstore mascara its amazing, its lengthens and volumises my lashes in one coat which is enough for the day, or two coats if i want extra volume for the evening. Although it isn't the most volumising mascara I've ever tried, the length and definition it gives to my lashes well makes up for it and means it's my go to mascara for almost any occasion. In the pictures I've applied it to my top and bottom lashes and i think it works well for both. The brush is plastic and i do find some plastic bristles can scratch my lash line when applying, but the bristles on this one are firm yet slightly bendy which means that doesn't happen. There are loads of short bristles rather than spaced out long ones which helps to coat every lash evenly and make sure the right amount of product is distributed, along with making it easier to apply to the bottom lashes. I've repurchased it about 3 times over the past year and a half, and it only starts to dry up after about the 6/7 month mark so you definitely get your moneys worth. For a drugstore mascara it is on the pricey side of things at £10.99, but its currently on offer at feelunique for just over £9 so i'd definitely recommend picking it up whilst the offers on!

whats your favourite mascara?
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