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Sunday 30 January 2011

My top 5 Barry M products

Happy Sunday all!! Have a nice weekend? Adryen and I watched Tangled on Friday night (ok, so we might be a teensy bit older than the targeted audience but it was great!) and then walked Bernard up Cavehill today. Fairly lazy weekend overall but I reckon those are the best kind :)

As I was getting ready on Friday I realised that 4 of the makeup products I’d used were by Barry M, which is what inspired this post. I love brands that do loads of reliable goodies, that way you aren’t worried that your next purchase from the range will be a dud that’ll end up lying in the bottom of a drawer after two uses!

So in no particular order these are my favourite Barry M products
Dazzle Dusts. These have been a firm favourite of mine for years! I adore the selection of colours available – there have been times when I’ve bought new shoes and actually brought them into Boots to hold next to the Dazzle Dusts to see if I can get a colour to match. Havent been let down yet :)
Lip Paint (dunno why they're called lip paint when they're just regular lipsticks?) The only thing I don’t like about these is the packaging, it’s that horrible rubberish material that attracts dirt and ends up looking tatty really quickly. Other than that they’re amazing. As you can see I've worn one down into the most awkward flat-topped shape!
Kohl pencil in white. I use this on my waterline and it really brightens up my eyes. I know a lot of makeup artists say you should use a pinkish colour instead of a stark white as it doesn’t look natural but I love the white so I’m happy to stick with this!
Lip Gloss. These look good, smell sensational, last well, have a nice applicator and only cost £4.49. Not bad at all
Foundation Creme. This one came as a bit of a surprise. I had incredibly low expectations because the packaging is horrible and the cream actually looked like it had “separated” in the container – you could see a white liquid and a pale brown liquid. But I was so intrigued as I’d never tried a Barry M foundation that I bought it anyway. After a good shake the product was one colour (always a good start I reckon!) and it looks fantastic on. The coverage is medium, long lasting and very natural. Definitely recommend giving this a try if you haven’t already! ♥

Dove giveaway winners

Evening all! Just a quick post to announce the winners of my little Dove Hair Therapy Range


Congrats to you all! I’ve already sent you an email :)

Just realised I haven’t done an actual giveaway where the stuff has been chosen and purchased by me in ages! All the ones I’ve listed recently have been sponsored by companies so I shall do another one asap ♥

Friday 28 January 2011

Epic Fails - products I regret buying

Good evening all and Happy Friday!! I’m so glad the weekend is finally here cos that was one of the longest most boring weeks ever! I’m actually staying in Adryens from now till Sunday and we intend to do as little as possible; there’ll be nothing but rubbish tv with lots of delicious food. Bliss :)

Over the last couple of months I’ve actually come across loads of fantastic new beauty goodies and have even discovered a couple of new brands, which have quickly become firm favourites but as always there’s been a couple of purchases that haven’t been quite so successful!

I know one persons trash is another persons treasure and some people might absolutely adore these but they just don’t do anything for me at all :(
Garnier Fresh Essentials Eye Make-up Remover

I’d heard loads of great things about this and was won over by the price and gorgeous fresh and natural sounding description. Unfortunately it absolutely doesn’t do what it says on the tin. This supposedly “gently removes all makeup, even waterproof” but I had to rub and rub at my eyes to actually remove anything at all – even a fine slick of eyeliner and 1 coat of (non-waterproof) mascara was too much for this too manage

Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse Blush

Dunno why I keep buying these? I haven’t come across a single one that shows up well on my skin. I’m incredibly pale so have bought a couple of light pinky/peachy shades but these are practically non-existent when applied so I end up with very little colour and very noticeable pores. Nice

MAC Zoom Lash

Talk about overrated! I’ve had this recommended to me by soooo many people I figured it was pretty much a guaranteed success. Not so much. I got a mini version as part of a gift set and was really keen to try this but I’m not keen on the brush, find the product too wet and also dislike the way it makes my lashes difficult to separate… I’ve worn this quite a few times to see if it grows on me but I’m just newly disappointed every time I try it

GOSH Natural Touch Foundation

I was extremely disappointed by this foundation as I’m a massive fan of the entire GOSH range and previous to this purchase I hadn’t ever disliked a single one of their products. There isn’t one particular thing that I dont like about this but the combination of rubbish coverage, lifeless finish and crap staying power make me regret buying it. To be fair it isn’t that much worse than a lot of drugstore foundations I’ve tried in the past but there just aren’t enough redeeming features for me to be even slightly impressed by it

Thursday 27 January 2011

your anti-aging routine?

I turned 25 at the end of last year but I was more worried about spots than wrinkles! Thankfully my skin has started to clear up and I actually look like a 25 year old as opposed to a spotty teenager. Woo! :)

But it’s got me thinking about aging and whether or not I should be using any anti-aging products now. Most of the goodies I use are all about getting the best results immediately and I don’t really think about the future of my skin (although I always wear a moisturiser or foundation with an SPF)

My mum and sister had noticeable crows feet around their eyes and laughter lines around their mouths by the time they were about 30 – my sis is 32 now – and although I seem to be taking after my dad I’m a bit worried that I’ll hit 30 and my face will start to look like a scrunched up paper bag

Do you use any anti-aging lotions or potions at the min? Did you start young or are you gonna wait till you actually see “the first signs of aging?” I was thinking of picking up a night cream or something at least but there’s so many available it’s hard to know where to start! ♥

Wednesday 26 January 2011

Infinite colour (well 10 hours) by Rimmel

I definitely have a love/hate relationship with long wearing lip colours. On one hand I think the staying power is beyond awesome and totally love knowing it’ll still be there after I’ve munched my way through a 3 course meal. On the other hand they feel horrible. Of course we’re talking about the proper-two-coat-lasts-eight-hours-or-more kinda lip colours in this case, as opposed to those regular glosses that claim to last 6 hours. Two words spring to mind when I think of those. Aye right.
I imagine you’ll all have tried these kinda products at least once or twice cos the whole idea is so appealing. Apply your lipstick in the morning and then don’t worry about touching up till tea time. What’s not to love!? For me it’s the texture. I absolutely hate the way the first coat dries like a surprisingly thick layer of emulsion paint (not something I’ve actually experienced but I bet they aren’t too dissimilar!) that leaves my lips all uncomfortable and dry. I know that’s the whole reason they supply a nice glossy top coat but then I can’t help thinking; if I’m gonna have to constantly reapply the top coat to keep my lips moist surely I’d be best just using a regular lipstick? Dilemmas dilemmas :)

One of my current favourite shades - Wear It Well

Anywho I’ve tried about, hmmm, a million of these things and my favourites are definitely the Infinite Colour 10 Hour Lip Colour & Gloss by Rimmel. I fell in love with a shade called All Night Party and have picked up half a dozen or so since then. They cause all the same problems for me as the others I’ve tried but to a lesser degree. The first coat isn’t as thick or uncomfortable and the gloss is rather sleek and smooth so feels quite nice once it’s applied. But the best thing has to be the shades available – they go from ridiculously bright pink to the most beautifully subtle barely there nude with everything inbetween
For day to day wear I stay clear of these kinda lip colours but if I know I’m gonna be heading out for the day with little chance to reapply my makeup then they can be a lifesaver ♥

Tuesday 25 January 2011

Playboy lipglosses - tacky but awesome

If someone asked me to name the tackiest brands I could think of I have to admit that Playboy would probably take the top spot. It’s just so…so…Tacky. See? I can’t even think of another word to describe it :)

But I like to think I’m pretty open minded so when I spotted these little Playboy lipglosses I figured they’d be worth a try

As you can probably guess I really wasn’t expecting much from them but I fell in love the minute I opened the first one… The smell is absolutely sensational! It’s really familiar and reminds me of when I was a kid but I can’t quite place it. Got my sister to have a sniff of them too and she recognised the scent but, like me, couldn’t place it. She loved it so much I gave her the clear gloss I’d picked up with this lot

Other than the extremely tacky packaging I can’t fault these! The colours are lovely on and although they look very similar in the pic there is a definite variation in the shades. They come with a hint of shimmer but the glitter particles are teensy so you just get a gorgeous hint of glitter in the light but it doesn’t look tacky (there’s that word again)

None of my glosses last a particularly long time – thanks to my constant water drinking as opposed to the products – so I’ve generally reapplied these every couple of hours to ensure they look neat n fresh

If you happen to stumble across these on any future shopping trips I definitely recommend swatching - and smelling - them to see what you think. I reckon you’ll be pleasantly surprised! ♥

Sunday 23 January 2011

Urban Decay Brow Box

Know what I’d love? Gorgeously thick and perfectly preened Audrey Hepburn style eyebrows that shape my face and draw attention to my eyes. Alas, mine are fine, sparse and way to light to draw any attention whatsoever :(

I can’t stand those fake looking “drawn on” eyebrows that a lot of people seem to sport (been guilty of this myself but it was a long time ago so if it’s ok with you I reckon we should just brush past that!) I also don’t want to spend ages drawing in my brows because… Well… because I’m lazy and would rather spend the time doing other stuff

So I was rather chuffed when I came across Urban Decays Brow Box. I bought my first one a couple of years ago and have used these consistently ever since. There are 5 shades available and I vary which one I use depending on my skin tone - changes quite a bit from season to season – but the fact that there are 2 shades in each box means you can combine them or use them separately to get the perfect colour

I adore all the Urban Decay packaging because it’s so, you know, purple? And, er, girly. Yeah, I’m not too sure why I love it so much but I just know that when I see an Urban Decay beauty product I cant help but get little excited :)

This little box comes with 2 brow powders, a teensy angled brush, tweezers and some brow wax

The powders are completely natural looking and last forever, the brush is perfectly shaped and easy to use and the wax ensures that your new brow creation lasts all day long. The tweezers are a bit naff (think Swiss army knife quality as opposed to Tweezerman quality) but work well for plucking out those annoying stray hairs that always appear at the worst possible time

At £16 this isn’t exactly cheap but it lasts ages and thanks to the way it adds the perfect finishing touch to any makeup look I reckon it’s totally worth it ♥

Perfect Finish foundation by Collection 2000

As you can probably tell from my massive collection of drugstore makeup products I’m most definitely not a makeup snob – in fact I enjoy shopping for bargain drugstore goodies waaay more than high-end stuff. And not just cos it stops me breaking out in a cold sweat when my bank account statement arrives in the post :)

Though I must admit that when it comes to foundations I generally find that the super cheap brands (2true, Natural Collection, 17, Miss Sporty, Collection 2000 etc) just aren’t great quality. I’ve tried dozens of their foundations over the years and there have been a few gems but most head straight for the bin after a couple of uses

An exception to the rule is Perfect Finish liquid foundation by Collection 2000. Now this is never going to be my absolute favourite product or anything but I’m just amazed that we can get such an incredible product for £3.99 (£4.99 in Boots in case you were wondering!)

When I first tried using this I was soo disappointed by the texture cos it was really runny. I then gave the bottle a little shake which did the trick – the texture is like thick double cream and glides on extremely easily


Comes with a pump dispenser. This is actually an important factor for me; I can’t stand glass bottles where you have to pour some of the product out to use it

The coverage is light to medium and is very buildable so you can be as light or heavy handed as you wish

You know how some foundations just look like a mask? This looks like skin. Completely natural and slightly dewy

Doesn’t set quickly so you have loads of time to work this into the skin, ensuring its well blended and you don’t have that dreaded “foundation line” around the jaw and chin!

Feels exceptionally light, almost like you aren’t wearing anything at all

SPF 20… I’m sure we’ve all heard how important it is to use an SPF foundation or moisturiser every day

It costs £3.99 in Superdrug. Seriously. £3.99


Not particularly long lasting. After about 8 hours I feel like I need to touch up or reapply

Only comes in 6 different shades

Coverage is only light/medium so definitely needs to be used in conjunction with a concealer to hide dark circles or blemishes

Wore this without a primer a few days ago and it sunk into my pores, making them very noticeable

Friday 21 January 2011

Mineral powder foundations

If there’s anything better than a superb skin-perfecting foundation then it has to be one that is actually silky light and allows skin to breathe whilst giving great coverage… Which is where mineral foundations come in! Ever since QVC started doing little mineral makeup segments on the show I’ve been obsessed with finding the best products. Er, yeah, I’m one of those people who sits glued to QVC whilst wearing my pjs and drinking tea. But lets brush past that, shall we? :)

I dunno about you but I’ve found it a million times harder to get a mineral powder that matches my skin tone than I ever have with a liquid foundation. There is just so much variation between shades and a lot of them look way too yellow or pink on my face. So far the best ones I’ve come across are Pure Foundation loose mineral powder by Maybelline and the Lasting Finish minerals loose powder by Rimmel
Both of these are great and I love how they blend with the naturals oils on my face so the result is pretty and quite dewy (definitely odd but awesome for a powder I reckon!); I really don’t like powders that just sit on top of the skin clinging on to each little hair because they look completely unnatural and kinda… well, gross really :)
Annoying little holes that allow the powder to get everywhere!

Each of these comes with a mini kabuki brush (the Maybelline one is waaay better) so they’re great for keeping in your bag to touch up throughout the day. Oh and talking of which! The Rimmel one comes with an amazing little plastic stopper that you can use to cover the holes in the lid. I’ve found this unbelievably handy cos I hate the way the powder continually falls through the shaker if you’re moving the regular pots around

Awesome little stopper that comes on the Rimmel powder jar

Anyway, the point of this post was actually to ask if you have a favourite loose mineral powder. I’d love to try another one that gives full coverage but I’m so wary of splashing out before I know that it’ll deliver the goods so any recommendations would be most welcome! ♥

Thursday 20 January 2011

Revlons super lustrous lipgloss

Due to my current spending ban I’ve been digging through my storage boxes of unused makeup in the vain hope that it’ll be enough to satiate my shopping craving. I’m embarrassed to admit that there’s a lot of stuff I haven’t got round to opening, even though I stood at the checkout thinking that this one blush/lipgloss/mascara/whatever was gonna be my new hg product and something I just couldn’t possibly live without :)

I’ve come across a few gems that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed using over the last few weeks and one of them is this Revlon lipgloss. I’ve actually heard nothing but good things about this which is why I picked it up in the first place but for some reason it got tossed aside and was promptly forgotten so I only wore it for the first time a few days ago
For a change I actually agree with every positive comment that’s been made about this; the tube is sleek, simple and stylish, which is always a good start! I love the standard doe-foot applicator and the texture is fab… It’s one of those not too sticky but not too slick glosses that manage to make even my small, thin lips looks rather full. No mean feat I can tell you!

The staying power could be totally phenomenal but seeing how I’m constantly drinking throughout the day I have to reapply every couple of hours so I really can’t say for sure! As always the colour I’ve gone for is a simple, cute, girly pink (shade 60 - shine that pink) that’s extremely inoffensive and would probably suit most skin tones. But as soon as I lift my self-imposed spending ban I shall be splashing out on at least 3 or 4 other shades ♥

Tuesday 18 January 2011

Super Orgasm by NARS

I think there are some cult classics in the beauty world that we’ve all heard about (and in some cases completely relied on) over the years; things like Urban Decays Primer Potion, YSLs Touche Eclat Highlighting pen and Elizabeth Ardens 8 hour cream all spring to mind… Another one that I see mentioned all the time in beauty blogs, magazines and makeup videos is Orgasm by NARS

After lusting after it for about, ooooh, a century or so, I finally decided to treat myself and picked it up from my local SpaceNK. I’m pleased to say that I really like it, although after all the hype I don’t think it was ever gonna completely live up to my impossibly high expectations!
Super Orgasm
Anywho, a friend of mine then bought me a gorgeous NARS gift set which included a blush in the shade Super Orgasm. Oh. My. Goodness. I adore this, honestly I’ve found it to be one of the prettiest, most wearable shades ever and it always guarantees a compliment or two (admittedly from my mum and kid sister but they totally count! :p)

The regular Orgasm is a beautiful peachy pink with shimmer whereas the Super Orgasm has gold glitter, which may sound really tacky and OTT but it actually manages to look gorgeous on. As with all NARS blushes in comes in one of the rather annoying dirty-finger-print-attracting-rubber-like compacts which has a good sized mirror. The texture is far finer that it looks at first glance and so far I’ve enjoyed this more every time I’ve used it. Don’t you just love it when that happens? ♥

Monday 17 January 2011

True Match powder by L'Oreal

I was getting ready for work this morning and figured I best throw a powder compact into my bag because my skin has been rather shiny over the last few days. Talking of which Adryen said to me a while back “Joy your skin looks beautiful. It’s really… shiny… and stuff” I knew he was aiming for a compliment but couldn’t help being ever so slightly offended. Kinda like when he said my hair looked really flat when he apparently meant straight. Sometimes choosing the right word really is important! :)

Anyway, where was I? Oh yes, we were talking about my ridiculously shiny face, which got me thinking about the best powders I’ve come across. One of my all time favourites is definitely True Match by L’Oreal. This stuff is bloody brilliant!

I’ve been using this for about 4 years (not the same one you understand – although that would be seriously impressive – I think I’m on my 4th or 5th now) and the first thing that impressed me about it was the extraordinary variety of shades; my skin is unbelievably pale during the winter months (tans fairly easy when there’s some sunshine) and I find it hard to get foundations and powders that are light enough but the Rose Vanilla matches my skin tone perfectlyThe compact itself is actually quite nice if a little simple; basic powder pan on top and there is a small section underneath that has a little mirror and sponge. I’m really anal when it comes to hygiene so never actually use the sponge but it’s always handy to have “just in case”

As for the texture, well it really couldn’t be any better! I love how it’s silky smooth, light as air and feels so finely milled that you hardly even feel like you’re wearing anything. Which might lead people to expect pretty poor coverage but nope, this can be built up from a fine sheen-absorbing layer to a proper medium coverage foundation that even does fairly well against dark circles and the like. Pretty amazing, no?

I’ve gone through dozens of different powders over the years from Chanels poudre universelle compacte and Estee Lauders aeromatte ultralucent powder to Cliniques stay-matte sheer pressed powder and Bobbi Browns sheer finished pressed powder and I can say without doubt that if I could only use one of them for the next 10 years it would be L’Oreals true match

Do you have a powder you always reach for? Or do you like to use a big variety of brands? ♥

Saturday 15 January 2011

Bobbi Brown long-wear gel eyeliner

Although I seem to pick up a new gel liner every other week I don’t use them very often… I just find that pencils and liquid liners take a little less effort cos there’s no brush at the end that requires cleaning. Me? Lazy? Well maybe just a tad :)

This was one of those rare impulse purchases where I got home and was actually still pleased that I picked it up!

The liner comes in a teensy tiny glass jar and there is an unbelievably small amount of gel but a little goes an incredibly long way so although I’ve used this dozens of times I’ve barely made a dent in the product

I've found that the ELF small precision brush works well when applying this

What I love about this is that it’s so easy to apply; if I’m in a rush I can sweep this on quickly and correct any mistakes before it dries. As much as I adore my liquid liners I don’t like having to start all over if I happen to make a mess of it during application

The colour is really intense so I generally use Graphite Shimmer Ink during the day and Black Ink if I’m heading out for the evening, haven’t tried any other colours yet but I have my eye on the Violet Ink cos it looks really rich and pretty

Oh and when they say long-wear they really mean it in this case! Once this sets it stays in place all day long without smudging or creasing. Last Saturday I applied this before work and it looked perfect by the end of the day… I then committed the ultimate skin sin and fell asleep next to Adryen whilst watching TV, when I woke up hours later my liner hadn’t budged!

Friday 14 January 2011

MAC Sheertone blush. Uber letdown

Happy Friday everyone! I don’t have my usual Friday feeling but I’m sure that’s just cos I’m working tomorrow (BOOO!!) but I finish at 4pm so still have the whole evening free (HURRAH!!)

Apologies for being a big old Negative Nelly but when I come across a product that I really don’t like I feel the need to rant a teensy bit :)

I picked up this blush about a month ago and it’s been sitting in my drawer gathering dust… I couldn’t remember why it had been cast aside so figured I’d give it a try during the week

See how it looks incredibly bright and pigmented? Like it’ll give a gloriously pretty pink glow to the cheeks? Unfortunately it does nothing of the sort. I’m sure you’ve noticed that MAC do different blush formulas for different looks (sheertone, satin, sheertone shimmer, frost etc) The shade I have is “Sheertone” so I’d be happy to forgive this being a tad more subtle than most of my blushes but it’s so bloody subtle that there isn’t any colour!
Pink Swoon (sheertone)

Honestly you could apply 10 layers of this and it still wouldn’t be particularly noticeable (I know from experience!) which is a shame because the texture is beautiful; so soft and smooth, one of those extremely finely milled pressed powders that generally apply like a dream

What really gets on my nerves is that I paid £17 which is enough to purchase 17 of my current favourite blushes (MUA shade 1) and they would actually do what you expect from a blush. I’m sure you can probably guess that I wont be recommending this MAC blush to anyone!

Hope you have a totally fantastic weekend! ♥

Thursday 13 January 2011

MAC studio fix fluid

I’m more than a little obsessed with foundations and I’ve heard loads of great things about this one so figured I definitely had to get my hands on it. Unfortunately it isn’t quite what I expected but it’s still far from awful…


Comes in a massive selection of shades and I managed to get one to suit my pale skin (NC15)

Doesn’t dry or “set” too quickly so I have plenty of time to work with it during application

Gives fairly good coverage; enough to hide my dark circles after a late night

Only takes a small amount to cover the entire face so should last a long time

Lasts all day without fading too much or sinking into my pores


The bottle. I hate screw tops because I find the pump bottles are easier, less messy and more hygienic

Gives a matte finish that looks a bit too stark and 2-dimensional, not very luminous or natural

Caused little bumps under my skin around my forehead (the one place I never get spots!)

I asked the MAC sales person for the fullest coverage foundation and he recommended this. I’d say the coverage is most definitely medium

Left my skin quite dry so I had to start using a richer moisturiser before sleepy sleeps

I know plenty of people who adore this foundation and absolutely swear by it. Some wouldn’t even consider trying anything else!… Unfortunately it didn’t grab me in quite the same way but it’s still an ok product that gives ok coverage and generally does a fairly ok job. So overall I reckon it’s ok :)

Monday 10 January 2011

Cellnique Paramedical skin care range

Awesome news!! I was recently contacted by a company called Cellnique. It would seem that someone at the company had stumbled across my blog and (possibly due to my constant whining and complaining!) offered to send me some skin care products to review. Woo! *happy dance*

After sending the girl details of my rather problematic skin I received a lovely collection of goodies designed specifically for my skin concerns; mostly gross spots that hang around my chin – a bit like teenagers in hoodies hanging around street corners texting and generally being a tad annoying - and simply wont go away
skin purifying cleanser
I also have some scarring from where the spots have been particularly bad or, ahem, “accidentally” squeezed by me in the past
skin action gel plus
This is the kinda range I’ve wanted to try for ages but it’s just way out of my price-range and I couldn’t afford to splash out on it without knowing if it will actually work! (what I’ve been sent would cost aroud £105.00 to buy online) I’ll not bore you with a full list of ingredients cos you can always have a nosy at the website if you like but the lotions and potions I’ve been sent contain an array of awesometastic spot fighting ingredients such as salicylic acid, seaweed extract, burdock, witch hazel, tea tree, vitamin c, aloe vera and eucalyptus oil

I know this is quite sad but I was actually unbelievably excited about using this range and thoroughly enjoyed using the cleanser, lotion and gel before my shower. I reckon I’ll give a mask a test run tomorrow

skin purifying masque

If anyone has had to live with bad skin you’ll know what I mean when I say that if I’m speaking to someone I can find myself worrying that they’re just looking at any gross spots that happen to be plaguing me at the time, which makes me extremely self conscious . I’m not the most vain person ever and my skin could definitely be a lot worse but by the same token it could also be a lot better… Fingers crossed for the latter eh? :)

Gonna be using this range morning and night for the next while so I’ll let you know if it’s any good! ♥

Zoe and George

Normally my cat George isn’t a big fan of other animals. She’s a bit of a princess and does pretty much what she wants when she wants. Which generally involves lying on a red velvet cushion (I kid you not) and leaving it only when she fancies a snack :)
I was amazed when I wandered into the room yesterday and saw her lying so close to Zoe (my adorable new dog) and I know it’s not beauty related but I thought this pic was too cute not to post, especially cos my dog is actually smaller than my cat! ♥

Sunday 9 January 2011

Rimmel Sexy Curves Mascara

Hope everyone had a fantastic weekend! I had to work yesterday and I’d planned to watch a film at Adryens afterwards… About 5 minutes after the film started I was sleeping like a baby. Not really the most exciting Saturday night ever, eh? :)

I did a post about my favourite mascaras recently and allthatspink1 asked about the Rimmel Sexy Curves so I figured I’d do a little review on it…

I know this is completely shallow but the packaging is the sole reason I bought this. I love the purple colour and the shape of the bottle just looks gorgeous! Thankfully it’s actually a great mascara so for once I’m glad I picked something up based solely on how it looks

The brush has rubber bristles and is quite small and thin compared with a lot of the newer “volumising” brushes that have appeared on the market recently. For some reason companies seem to think giant brushes that are so big you can barely get to the bottom of your lashes are the way to go, which is beyond me.

I like a wand that is precise enough to allow me to apply mascara right into the corner lashes and also on my bottom ones. I guess the biggest difference between this and most other mascaras is that the wand itself has “curves” which is supposed to give fuller curvier lashes
As far as I’m concerned the most important (and best) thing about this mascara is the actual formula as opposed to the brush – it’s intensely dark, not too wet, not clumpy and coats each lash easily with one smooth stroke

The curling effect is really rather good… I never bother with curlers because I’m a bit of a lazy sod but this gave them a lasting curl that actually looked really flattering and dramatic. Ever see those fluttery, girly eye lashes in the magazine ads? Well it didn’t actually look anything like that but it was still extremely pretty :)

Also, it lasted ages! By the end of the day my lashes were still extremely dark and curled, there wasn’t even any flaking and absolutely no clumping. Always a good thing in my book. So overall I would definitely recommend this, especially considering the price is so reasonable ♥

Unwanted makeup giveaway winners

Firstly I want to thank everyone who entered, I have to admit that I only expected there to be a handful of entries so I didn’t get the chance to draw the winners yesterday as planned; it’s actually taken me nearly 3 hours because so many people have commented! :)

I was blown away by all the lovely comments and one of the best things about this little “giveaway” is getting to see what was most popular! The Stila eyeshadow quad was the most requested item with 74 entries and the MUA stuff was the least requested with only 18 entries

I’ve enjoyed doing this a great deal and will definitely be doing the same thing fairly soon (as well as an actual charity blog sale) so if you didn’t win anything this time feel free to stop by in future! Oh and to those of you who have donated or are going to I want to say a massively ginormous thank you – it really is greatly appreciated ♥

Now, onto the winners!

Yourstrulypam - 1
Chicky Spouts - 2
candy apples – 3
Christina Marie - 4
Birminghamlady – 5
beckiangel44 – 6
ct1980 - 7
RiZZiE aka Lip Gloss Lover - 8
BeautybyPaula – 9
Lolaa - 10

A big congrats to each of you! An email is on its way and I genuinely hope you get some use out of these goodies :)

Saturday 8 January 2011

Estee Lauder - full coverage foundation

The most awesome thing happened to me today! I popped into my local supermarket to pick up a few essentials and I headed to the bathroom … not sounding too awesome just yet but I’m getting there! :) so I used said bathroom, washed my hands and then brushed my hair … I was just about to leave when the girl who’d been standing next to me at the sinks stopped me to ask what I used on my skin because it looked, and I quote, “perfect”

Now I really cant stress enough how completely imperfect my skin is. You know how you go to those skin care websites filled with magical creams, lotions and potions that can supposedly fix everything and there’s a dropdown where you select your skin concern (acne, oily skin, dry skin, large pores, redness etc etc)? Well I’ve suffered from every single one. I kid you not.

So as you can probably guess I was pretty much ecstatic for the rest of the day! Honestly I don’t think anyone could’ve put me in a bad mood after that :)

Alas, my skin is as bad as ever; the acne has calmed down a bit over the last few months but there are still little reddish marks on my chin where it was incredibly bad about 6 months ago. Being obsessed with foundations I’d been browsing the interwebs looking for ones that give exceptionally full coverage and stumbled across Maximum Coverage by Estee Lauder

I should mention that when I went to 2 local Estee Lauder counters they didn’t have this on show so I ended up asking one of the girls if they stocked it, for some reason it was just in the drawer and they didn’t have any available to try. I was a bit wary about handing over £25 for a product I couldn’t test, especially considering there are only 4 shades available, but thankfully it suits my skin perfectly

This stuff is described as camouflage makeup for face and body. It’s not something I’d consider wearing every day but if my skin is playing up or I want a more flawless look then it’s a godsend. The texture is extremely thick, more like a cream than a liquid, but I find that it still applies easily as long as I only use a small amount. Or it can be mixed with a little moisturiser for a runnier consistency

I’m not kidding when I say it goes on like paint and covers a multitude of sins. I’ve started using it as a concealer when I’m wearing a different foundation

It’s obviously not gonna be for everyone due to the extreme coverage but what I adore about this is that it creates an almost mask-like base which I can colour and contour using blush, bronzer and highlighter in pretty much any way I want. I love wearing this with natural looking eye makeup a little pink blush and some pink gloss – the end result is understated, pretty and radiant

Oh and it lasts all day long! I’ve worn this for about 12 hours straight and it still looked perfect – though that could be in part to the primer I used :)

Oh oh oh! and for anyone who already uses Double Wear (which I also swear by) this is a bit like that but with even better coverage, though you will probably find it a tad more drying

Do you have any full-coverage foundations that do what they say on the tin? ♥

Friday 7 January 2011

Natural Collection - awesome everyday goodies

So I was getting ready for work this morning *groan* (Is there anything worse than getting up when it’s still dark and trekking to work knowing you’ll not be leaving till it’s dark again?) and I was in a bit of a rush as usual so I had about 10 minutes to do my hair and makeup. As you can probably guess I went for a slightly dishevelled “totally natural” look :)

Anywho it made me realise that I’ve been reaching for the same products on and off for about 6 months because they’re just sooo reliable

All the items are by Natural Collection and when I picked them up over the summer I got all 3 for a fiver (hurrah!!) For me the range is pretty hit n miss – the foundation is atrocious and a lot of the eyeshadows are waaay below average when it comes to pigmentation but these were fantastic little buys and I still love them
Juicy Lips

I adore everything about this lipgloss; the colour is a subtle pretty pink with a hint of shimmer and it looks beautiful on – not exactly natural but not bright or dramatic either. It doesn’t last particularly long, I’d say a couple of hours tops and that’s only if you aren’t eating or drinking much but it feels so good on that I don’t mind that a great deal. It’s not sticky at all (probably why it’s not very long lasting!) but feels smooth and ever so slightly creamy, more like a lip balm than a gloss. And if that wasn’t enough it even smells deliciously fruity

Lash Definition mascara in Black

I really wish someone had given me this mascara when I was a teenager because I spent a lot of time with lashes like spider legs; for some reason it took me a while to master the art of mascara application! This is just one of the most simple, easy to apply, lash lengthening mascaras you can ask for. The brush is fairly small and thin so you can be precise and even do the lower lashes with no bother at all. It separates the lashes with ease and the colour is extremely dark. All for £1.99

Moisture Shine lipstick in Pink Mallow. Don't you just love the name?

Gorgeous pink shade. Smooth creamy texture. Doesn’t dry out my lips. Overall this is definitely a winner The lipstick and gloss. Though I must say this picture really doesnt do them justice! ♥

Bourjois - my favourite eye makeup remover

Know what I find super annoying? Eye makeup that leaves me with horrible panda eyes even though I was absolutely sure that I’d washed off all traces of it the night before. Which, incidentally, is why I don’t wear waterproof mascara; I have a hard enough time as it is removing the regular kind :)

In the past the only eye makeup remover I ever used was Bi-facil by Lancome but at around £19 for 125mls I had been on the lookout for something cheaper that works just as well.
After buying and trying many many different products I’ve finally found one that I absolutely love
This was an impulse purchse cos I happened to be picking up some Bourjois mascara and lipgloss and I spotted this for the bargain price of £4.99. The reason it grabbed my attention is that it actually looks just like the Bi-facil one; a two-phase formula that combines oil and water when it’s shaken up

I bought this at the start of December and have been using it daily since then yet there’s only about a centimetre out of the bottle. You only need the smallest amount on a cotton pad or ball and it quickly and gently removes all makeup. Even when I’ve gone a bit over the top with a new gel liner, mascara and/or kohl liner this removes everything soooo easily and doesn’t leave a horrible residue

This will last me ages but I’ll definitely be repurchasing this when I’ve run out!

Wednesday 5 January 2011

Bestest high-end lipsticks

I’m sure you guys are sick of me banging on about all my bargain drugstore goodies so I figured I’d do a post about a few lippies that I’ve splurged on over the last few months

I remember flicking through one of my sisters glossy mags when I was about, ooooh 12 or 13? And I came across a lipstick that cost £16. I thought this was completely hilarious and actually pointed it out to a few friends who all agreed that a £16 lipstick must have some sort of magical powers where it actually gets up, applies itself to your lips and then tidies the house and cooks the dinner too. For that kinda money I’d have expected nothing less

These days it’s a completely different story :) I certainly don’t throw money away on expensive lipsticks that I’ll never use (well, not often anyway) but I’ll happily hand over 20 quid if I think it’s a good ‘un that’ll really suit me

So in no particular order these are a few that I absolutely adore

Lancome color fever - 308
Estee Lauder pure color- lady pink (possibly my favourite lipstick ever)
Dior Addict high shine - 680
Clinique long lasting lipstick - soft bloom
Urban Decay lipstick - wanted

As you can probably tell I stick with fairly “safe” pinky neutral tones and don’t wear anything too dark or OTT thanks to having small thin lips. If I go any darker I look like a scary school teacher. Wearing my glasses instead of contacts just adds to the whole look :)

Do you have an all time favourite lipstick that you use constantly or couldn’t live without? ♥

Tuesday 4 January 2011

To line or not to line?

I feel the same way about lip liners as I do about highlighters, brow pencils/powders and bronzers; they’re great for certain occasions but they aren’t an integral part of my every day makeup routine in the same way that foundation, mascara and blush are

Unfortunately I suffer from bad skin and as we all know water is the cure for pretty much everything so I get through 2-3 litres of hot water/herbal tea each day. Which means, of course, that I’m always drinking something so can never keep my lip colour in place for more than about an hour

To be honest this doesn’t really bother me much but what I really couldn’t stand is that horrid lip-liner-still-in-place-with-no-lip-product-on-the-actual-lips-look that a lot of girls end up with after a long day, so I generally veer away from liners unless I know I’ll be getting the chance to touch up my makeup

My favourite lip liner is...

...L’Oreal Invincible Lip Liner in shade 722

This is fairly soft so goes on the lips really easily without me actually having to drag the skin. It’s also extremely comfortable; I like to fill in my whole lip with the liner and then apply a lipstick over the top and some pencils have been incredibly drying whereas I’ve been able to wear this for ages with no problems at all

The colour is ever so slightly darker than my lips so when this is applied it makes me look “finished” in a way that a plain gloss or lipstick doesn’t quite manage :)

My only complaint (oh come on you know me well enough by now to know there’s always something I don’t like about a product :p) is that due to this being one of the more modern “twist up” pencil style applicators it can’t be sharpened. Not a deal-breaker or anything but just a tad annoying when you’re trying to get a very precise line, you know? ♥