Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Take Care, Garnier...

Garnier has won my pounds in the battle of skin protection and hydration. Sorry Nivea, and the like, your packaging just aint pretty enough.. Plus Garnier has just bought out their Golden Protect shimmering Protection lotion, which comes in SPF10, SPF20 and SPF30. It's shimmery! When applying indoors the cream is a generic pinky toned lotion and applies normally. Soaks into the skin well and isn't sticky. All essential but isn't anything groundbreaking. However - once you get outside and the sun hits you you sparkle like a Crystal ball or a Cullen; depending on which analogy you wish to take from this. Essentially there are tonnes of sparkly bits in this and you shine!! shine like a star, shining so bright like the star that you are.. Bad points?? I don't like the smell at all. But saying that you don't notice unless, in the name of beauty blogging research, you spend five minutes sniffing the bottle and then your arm.

I bought the After sun last year after a severe case of sunburn. This is very soothing on overexposed skin, sinks into the skin very well and smells very nice. I took photos of the Golden Protect shimmering on my skin but the sparkle wouldn't transfer so I will skip any more photos of this in action, because, really, how exciting would that be?? Garnier Ambre Solaire products are half price in Superdrug at the moment. Boots are doing a 2 for 1. Around £12.99 full price though. Aren't sun creams expensive... xoxo

Hair DIY

So I'm between cuts and colouring but couldn't bear to put a tonne of bleach on my head so I opted for the nicer, money saving alternative of doing it myself. I got this box of nice and easy for a thrifty £4. I was very happy. It has the generic 1 - 2 - 3 system and goes on the same as any other. The formulation is quite thick actually and is colourless to begin with. As time goes on and the dye develops the colour develops with it. I left it on for 35 minutes I think. In terms of result, I think Clairol's claims are precise. It has gotten highlights running through it to give a natural look. I'm thinking I'll probably redye it before the summer is out but I think it's ok for the time being. And swell I think it is worth giving your hair a rest from constant bleaching. My hair appears to be in much better condition. A quick health tip - if you have NEVER dyed your hair before or have never used a DIY hair dye kit definitely use the 48 hour skin test first. Please don't just brag it the effects are awful. Google it!! If you have then you know the drill. The Nice and Easy is as good as any. xoxo

Rimmel 'Sun Shimmer' Instant Tan

Sometimes we just have to fake it!! If your like me and you will always streak your fake tan/gradual tan, no matter how many times products claim they are "streak proof", then why not try Rimmel's instant tan. Trust me it is fool proof. It comes in dark, light and fair in both Matte and Shimmer formulations.  I have fair matte and is perfect for my pale skin. It goes on so subtle you can hardly notice it. I apply two layers for my desired tan. I don't know if it lasts 24 hours but it lasts quite a long time. Ooh plus there's no biscuit fake tan smell either. In fact it smells of talcum powder/exactly the same as the Rimmel loose powder. It retails for around £6 and is sold with the other makeup in the Rimmel stand. Check out the pictures, below, of before and after. Bottom line: I highly recommend this; especially as it does not transfer at all and dries really quickly. No mess, no fuss, no being tangoed!! Love it xoxo

Stargazer White Foundation

I'm pale and I need some of my foundations lightening up. In a thrifty mood I shopped around for the cheapest I could find... I hate myself. Mixing £5 worth of white goop in with Chanel makes me cringe.

First impressions of the packaging are fine. It is a substantial, non-fussy, glass bottle. It holds 30mg and is rather dainty on the vanity table. Its black lid twists off and has a spatula type attachment to allow foundation scoopage. So Yeah so far so good. Hygienic and non-fussy.. Now the formulation is very thick. It actually goes quite a long way, however, once blended out on the skin it doesn't give very good coverage and tends to be very chalky. Furthermore on its own it is very tacky and uncomfortable on the skin and is remiscient to the cheapest nastiest foundation you bought when you were pre-teen. Not pleasant.

So its mixing abilities, what does one think??? Well it definitely lightens foundation, that is for sure, so thumbs up for that one. I feel paranoid that it is changing the overall formulations of my nice foundations though. They don't seem to last as long and are more cakey...or maby I'm being psycho. Bottom line, it lightens other foundations and that is what it was purchased for. So yes it does work. But the snob in me wants to run out and buy the Face Atelia in zero or Illamasqua skin base in 01 just for piece of mind. So i'm regretting my purchase - but tight times call for desperate measures, so I am going to have to suck it up and..gulp...use it. But between you and me its days in my makeup bag are numbered. xoxo

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Giving-In to the Hype: Revlon Colorburst lip butter in strawberry shortcake

Wow I was so excited by these and was eagerly awaiting their arrival on British soil. My first impressions are thus: I like the packaging. In photographs it looks kinda cheap and I didn't like how they're all different colours, preferring instead a sophisticated black. In real life their frosted multicoloured lids actually work in with the summery, lip balm / lipstick hybrid, theme and feel much more luxurious and weighty than one would imagine.

Unfortunately none of the other colours really impressed me. Only strawberry shortcake really caught my eye. I wanted others but both disappointed. creme brule felt a bit too brown toned for me and peach parfait was too dark and I wasn't a fan of the speckled frosted effect either. They have an abundance of pink shades but non that I deem right for me for every day.

Strawberry shortcake was bought with me believing it was a mid tone, easy everyday pink. In reality it is a frosted blue toned pink on me. I'm not a fan of frosted lipsticks so it puts me off and with anything less than a bubblegum pink blush to accompany it, it looks horrendous. Yes it is my fault as I bought this without testing it but I really wanted one.. Blah Blah Blah.

It glides on very well and, yes, feels like a lip balm. It's all very nice and the durability is average. No big there. Overall I like everything about them but I wish they had a better shade range for my taste and were all shimmer/frost free formulations (Other colours in the range are frost/shimmer free) - that is all.

Revlon continue to impress me, especially their nail polishes and lip products in general. I want every colour of their colorburst lipglosses. Very Chanel-esc I think. Next to L'oreal and Max Factor they are probably the most expensive brand on the high street though and forking out £7.99 for one of their lip butters was a bit of an "ouch" moment. xoxo

L'oreal telescopic explosion mascara

So I got this for £1.99!!! I don't like to brag but I might get my wears from dodgy market stalls. My defence? Good mascaras are too expensive.. and the cheap ones are crap. So we have to go on the dark side now and then and how much darker can you go than buying a mascara which resembles a mace flail. The spiky ball mascara was first created by Givenchy (Phenomen'Eyes mascara) and speedily copied by L'oreal. Strangely enough no other brand comes to mind, that has done this also... interesting!? But I have been intrigued a while so here we are. Plus YAY! the tube looks like a telescope. I Like :-)

My first impressions are very positive. This is definitely a LENGTHENING mascara. No volume as such but the eyelashes are seperated and lengthened perfectly. As I have this in brown it makes for a lovely day time look. I love the spikey ball aswell. I find that it is perfect at reaching every lash as there is ultimate control. Something you don't get with the big fat voluminous wands. Again very pleased. Although the wand is quite long and flimsy I don't find that a problem at all. I am definitely hooked on these mascaras and when there are a few extra pounds in my bank i'll give the Givenchy Phenomen'Eyes version a try. If Givenchy prices are a bit steep for you, try telescopic explosion HERE

UPDATE... it flakes like a b**** I have discovered. Very sad by this development :-( xoxo

Monday, 14 May 2012

Product review: Barry M lip paint 143

I love this lipstick. It is a beautiful bright corally-toned pink. It is surprisingly wearable and not too in your face at all. It glides on the lips giving fabulous colour pay off and a slight sheen. It wears incredibly well and feels very soft and hydrating. plus the Barry M lipsticks are one of the cheapest lipsticks on the shelves at £4.45. Plus I like the simple black (NARS-esc) packaging as well.

However when I swatched this, in store, the tester was much more sheer. So it was a bit of a surprise when I got mine home. Although my surprise was pleasant yours may not be so keep this in mind and be wary when buying from Barry M because you don't necessarily know what your in for and in general their consistencies vary greatly between colours too. xoxo

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Product Review: Maybelline Color Tattoo 24hr - In on and on Bronze / Bad to the bronze

HALLELUJAH!! Finally I found you. I seriously spent, what?, a fortnight plus going into Boots, going into Superdrug, running to the Maybelline stand only to find that On and On bronze (UK name) or Bad to the Bronze (US name) is sold out - again and again and again... No other colour really caught my eye and I was obsessed. So I was grinning ear to ear when the Superdrug in Chapel field Brighton had an abundance of them!!! ahhh... (miraculous, harmonious noise)

On and on Bronze is a very pigmented stunning metallic bronze shade, funnily enough, that is easy to just slap on your eyelids for a great natural look. The formulation is so creamy and lovely and blends like a dream. I was very, very impressed with this. It dries quite quickly and stays on all day with no flaking or smudging. The colour does fade however and does crease slightly. Regardless I love this lots and really want some more colours. I'm feeling tempting taupe (UK) / tough as taupe (US) as I think I would wear it much more often than the bright and very beautiful colours available.

The color tattoo 24hr cream eyeshadows retail for £4.99. The UK has only recieved 6 of the cream shadows and the US has 10 and retail for $6.99. xoxo

Product Review: NARS sheer glow

I bought NARS sheer glow on the back of the serious hype it was getting circa summer 2010 and as I live no where near a NARS counter I bought it blind on-line, how scary right?? but as luck would have it the shade Mont Blanc (Light2) is the best colour match of foundation I have ever had. It fits my winter shade perfectly but can become a tad light in the summer I suppose, but still wearable.

Sheer glow is for medium to dry skins, but I am combination to oily and this goes on beautifully. Depending on the day, however, my face can go a little bit shiny-chic after a few hours wear (So not for you if you suffer with oily to very oily skin). It is a medium coverage and I chose to blend with my fingers or a stippling/buffing brush. I find using a generic foundation brush creates a streaky look because of the consistency being quite runny. You could buff afterwards with an afore mentioned brush if you like I guess...

The packaging is simple and sophisticated. there's no pump unfortunately but it doesn't annoy me as much as some. Apparently you can buy pumps from MAC that fit the NARS bottle so I would check that out if the 'no pump' issue annoys you. It has a redundant square lid which slides off and a small, twist off lid which holds the product. It retails for approx. £30 for 30mg and is a very good foundation which, I have to say, is far superior to many others around its price range. I definitely recommend NARS sheer glow if your on the look out for a new foundation. xoxo

Monday, 7 May 2012

Lush Love

product: Lush The Comforter bubble bar
price: £4.50 (approx.)
directions: break into quarters - crumble into a running bath in place of bubble bath
results: luxurious creamy bubbles which smell of candy... and pink water

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Giving-in to the hype: Urban Decay NAKED2 palette.

 A bit of background... I have already spent a long time typing this post which was cruelly lost to all mankind. It has taken me a while to grieve its loss and move on.

Now that unpleasantness over with - lets talk about NAKED2... ooh the urge to title this post something along the lines of "lets get naked...again" was quickly over come but I was tempted. The one and only reason why I bought this is because the vlogger, blogger beauty community has been forcing it down my throat for 4 months. I remember the hype of last year with the original NAKED palette. I was intrigued and I looked, tested every single colour on my hand in the Piccadilly Circus Boots, but I was just not swayed. A year later and the powers that be at Urban Decay HQ have created a palette which I just couldn't say no to. I'm sure they are very pleased having caught me in their neutral eyeshadow trap after I evaded them the first time.

The palettes retail for £36, however I was very lucky and got my palette off Ebay for £24.95 so I recommend you shop around for a deal. I did not receive the lip junky though. This is no big deal as the fact they were selling a lip gloss with a eyeshadow pallet freaked me out a little, regardless of the fact they call it Naked, it still does not wash. I champion the revival of the mini primer potion that comes with the original NAKED palette. The double ended, synthetic bristled, brush, that comes with it too, is very handy, as it has a shader and blended brush in one neat package. It does not rival the power coupling of MAC's 139 and 217 as the more I use it the more disappointed I am with it. It does not pack on the colour as strongly as you would expect or hope unfortunately. In honesty I wish the palettes still came with the double ended 247 eyeliner pencils which were released with the first batch of the original NAKED palettes, back when.

I like the pencil tin-ness of the packaging. It's sturdy and great for travel but mine is very temperamental and half the time does not close. This may be because I bought it off a shader seller, who knows, but i'm not precious and wrap a elastic band around it to keep it shut if it isn't playing ball one day. Overall my pallet does not seem to be very well made, but I haven't read any review which says this so mine must be a one off.

Overall I have to whack the shadows on in order to get great colour payoff. Chopper falls down like a b**** and bootycall is rather chalky but apart from that they are all ok. My favourite colours are snake bite, YDK suspect and pistol. I wasn't surprised about this, to be honest, because they are why I bought this palette to begin with. I love the murky, taupey, grungy eyeshadows and these looked so interesting and fun. Apparently lots of the colours are duped in a NYX palette. I can't remember which unfortunately, but if you live in the US you might know or may care to share if you do.

 To put my two cents worth into the mix and to answer the big questions I have read over and over again... YES you should buy this palette if you like the murky, taupey tones which I have already spoken about, YES you should buy both this and the original naked palette if you love makeup and love neutral eyeshadows. YES the NAKED2 palette is better than the original because It is more interesting than the first. That is all. xxxx