Thursday, 30 May 2013

MAC Sweet & Sour Lipstick

A newly released MAC collection will have any make-up lover’s heart racing but a collection which includes seven, yes seven, brand new shades of lipstick will just about give us a cardiac arrest.  The much anticipated All About Orange range has finally launched and I’ve bagged myself a few beauties.  Inspired by the colour which is sweeping Korea, Asia and soon to be the rest of the world, this collection includes a gorgeous mix of powder blushes, nail polishes, lipsticks, glosses, an eye-shadow quad and as the name suggests, is all about the colour orange!

Being the lipstick lover that I am I couldn’t wait to get my hands on the new shades so picked up several of them.  I also grabbed a blush too but I’m going to review everything in individual posts so it doesn’t get too long.  First to catch my eye was Sweet & Sour, a creme sheen formula lipstick with a simply divine unique colour.  As you can see this isn’t a bright, ‘in your face’ orange so is definitely one to try if you’re a bit colour shy.  The shade is described as a ‘soft peach cream’ which fits the bill perfectly.  It does have orange undertones but it definitely airs more on the side of peachy/light coral.

As the formula is a cremesheen, the lipstick isn’t too pigmented.  Therefore, you can give lips a quick slick for a more sheer effect or build up the color with lots of layers for something a little more bold.  I went for it and applied a generous amount.  It lasts around two to three hours as it’s quite a glossy finish so top ups will be required throughout the day.  My lips looked fresh and my whole face was brightened by the colour - as was my mood!  Orange just reminds me of my bright sunny summer days (nothing like the weather today!)

I am in love with this lippy as I don’t have anything else like it in my lipstick collection.  I’m more of a pinks, purples and reds kind of girl so having some orange on my lips is a nice change.  I can’t wait to try out the rest of the collection so watch out for the rest of my reviews which will be coming soon.  Unfortunately, I hate to be the bearer of bad news but Sweet & Sour is already sold out on MAC’s website.  That’s just made you want it that little bit more hasn’t it?  Don’t fret - you may be able to pick it up in the shops but I would be quick as this is a limited edition collection and they don’t half sell out fast.  Eek!  Maybe I should go and buy some more?


Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Ardell Natural Style Lashes Black 117

Confession time.  My name is Gemma and I am an eyelash addict.  Dramatic I know but my love for false lashes certainly seems to surpass that of any regular girl and is becoming a bit of an issue for my bank balance.  They’re my item.  You know, that one beauty item that you would opt for above all others if some cruel individual (probably a boy who was clueless about beauty) made you pick only one thing to have for the rest of your life.  It would be a close call between falsies and a favourite lipstick but I think a pair of eyelashes would definitely win.

I know they’re not for everyone and they can look a little fake at times but I think they’re perfect for accentuating your eyes and really making them stand out.  My eyes are quite small and just a regular old boring brown colour so I really rely on a good pair of strip lashes to define them.  I’ve worn them for so long that I just don’t feel like me without them. I don’t feel fully dressed if that makes sense?  Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t wear them every day but I wouldn’t be seen without them on a night out or at a special occasion.  In fact, I think I’d rather stay in than go out with just my natural lashes.  Oh goodness, I’m sounding like such an Essex girl right now but what can I say?  It’s the truth...

Okay so enough of me declaring my love, I wanted to share with you all my latest fake lash buy which has had me all a flutter.  The Ardell 117 artifical eyelashes are my current go-to choice for when I want a natural yet full set of lashes.  They definite the eyes without being too dramatic and definitely guarantee the ‘are they or aren’t they real?’ reaction.  I find them really easy to apply and they blend in perfectly with my natural lashes.

What I love the most about all Ardell lashes is that they feel so light on your eyes.  I often forget that I’m wearing them because unlike some strip lashes, you just can’t feel them.  This pair come with a handy little carry case so you can store them somewhere safe and reuse them again and again!  How thrifty!  I’d definitely suggest you give these a go if you’re just getting into false eyelashes as they’re pretty much foolproof.  Experienced lash wearers, you also need the Ardell 117s in your lash collection.  But if you’re an obsessive like me, I don’t need to tell you that do I?


Sunday, 26 May 2013

Luke's big day

 Dress - H&M 
Blazer - H&M
Shoes - Very
Bag - Primark

Dressing up on a Sunday is becoming something of a tradition for me.  Tonight I’m making the most of ANOTHER bank holiday weekend (we have had so many lately!) and going out with the girls for a night on the tiles.  Last week I attended my nephew Luke's christening and had such a lovely day/night.  I took some outfit photos to share with you all so it’s about time I post them.  

First of all, please excuse the not so picturesque backgrounds.  I still don’t feel totally comfortable with standing on my own in public and having my picture taken so I snapped these outside of my house before we left for church.  Hopefully I’ll get over that shyness one day and be able to stand and pose loud and proud like a pro-blogger.

Anyway, onto the outfit.  I bought this dress last year from H&M because it ticked so many trend boxes for me.  Neon in colour and with an x-ray see through style, this is my kind of summer dress.  I’d wear it more often if I could but I think it’s one of those dresses that you really remember and I hate to outfit repeat.  I wore it with my new white blazer that I also picked up from H&M and my new shoes from Very which I am in love with so you’re going to see a lot more of these!).  I hope you’re all having a great bank holiday weekend.  I’m off  to go and get ready for tonight.  Ciao for now!


Thursday, 23 May 2013

Benefit Girl Meets Pearl

If there’s one thing we can all agree on it’s that Benefit do good highlighters right?  Whether it be Sun Beam, Moon Beam, High Beam, the list goes on and we’ve all either heard of one of them, tried one one of them, or know someone who has.  I’d like to introduce to you one of my personal favourites: Girl Meets Pearl.  So girls, meet Girl Meets Pearl.  Okay, that’s confusing!  Described by Benefit as none other than liquid pearl for your face, this really is a must if you’re desperate for dewy skin.  

With a fun name and pretty packaging, this product looks just as good in your make up bag as it does on on your skin.  The twist-up function means that you get just the right amount of highlighter so there’s no waste and the product lasts for ages, making £24.50 a rather reasonable price.  Initially the highlighter looks very pink when first applied so I thought it may be better suited to paler, cooler skin tones however when you massage the liquid into your skin, golden undertones come through, which I think would suit most skin tones.  The different shades do remind me of a pearl, catching the light and changing colours as the sun glints off it.

The formula is water based so it’s doesn’t feel too heavy and blends perfectly into the skin, both with and without make up.  I often get carried away with this product and put it everywhere!  I begin with my brow bone, then dab some onto the top of my cheek bones, then the tip of my nose, then my cupid’s bow (the bits where your lips peak for those who don’t know) and then finally a tiny bit in the middle of my bottom lip.  I just can’t get enough of the stuff and before I know it, my whole face is glowing.  Highlighting these points really transform my face, giving it life and dimension.  If you’re a novice when it comes to contouring and highlighting, this product is great for beginners as you really can’t go wrong with it.  Try mixing it with your foundation for an all-over dewy glow or apply a little to your cheeks before blusher to really make them shimmer!  Regardless of how you use it, you will be shining brighter than a string of pearls.  Perfect!


Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Revlon Nearly Naked Pressed Powder

Revlon’s Nearly Naked pressed powder is a great all-rounder in terms of setting powders.  It smooths your complexion, prevents shine and lasts all day, all without giving that cakey ‘she’s piled it on’ effect.  As someone with combination skin (oh the joys of being shiny and flakey at the same time!), I find this powder works well with my skin type, absorbing oil where necessary yet not further drying out my dehydrated areas.

The powder can be worn alone but I prefer to wear it over my foundation as I’m just not brave enough to go without it yet.  I imagine this and it’s sister product Revlon’s Nearly Naked liquid foundation would make the perfect duo for when you want light, none-obvious, coverage.  I haven’t tried the foundation yet but it’s on my wish list as I love the barely-there make up look.  The powder comes in five different colours so you should be able to match one to your skin tone.  I picked the lightest shade ‘010 fair‘ and it’s a perfect match for when I’m going au naturel without any false tan.  This shade is great as it doesn’t have any of those nasty orange undertones which appear when you put the powder onto your face, transforming you into an oompah lumpah.  The colour in the palette is a true shade so it should be pretty easy to match yourself up in store.   

I really like the sleek, white packaging of this powder which includes a mini powder puff and really good mirror inside for those on-the-go touch ups we all need to make during the day.  Unlike most mirrors which are inside powders or palettes, this one is quite large and really clear so you can leave your compact mirror at home.  At £7.99 this powder is very reasonably priced.  I’ve finally hit the pan on mine as I’ve been using it every day so it’s definitely time for a repurchase!


Monday, 20 May 2013

That's oh so Vogue!

Well, that’s it!  My three weeks at Vogue magazine are well and truly over.  I’m home and no longer get to feel on a daily basis that I have my dream job.  Sob!  My time in London went far too fast and before I knew it I was boarding the train back to Sunderland.  As the old saying goes...times flies when you’re having fun!  Oh and didn’t I have lots of that!

I initially posted about my experience during my first week and you can read about the sort of things I got up too here.  Since then, my time became more and more enjoyable as I began to properly settle in.  After working in the city for a few weeks, I discovered it’s not as scary as it initially might feel.  You soon get to know all of the ‘tricks of the tube‘ and start walking just as quick as the other commuters trying to get to work.  If you’re thinking about making the move to London or even just visiting short term like me, don’t be put off by the pace of city life.  Trust me, you get used to the honking horns and sirens and it does start to feel like home.

Vogue House, the glorious looking building in which most Conde Nast publications are housed, also began to feel less alien and more like any other regular office.  Faces become familiar and I eventually got my bearings and learnt where everything was i.e. the all important mini-cafe on the third floor for when I needed my afternoon Diet Coke fix.  I soon became really at ease and started to feel like this was my new day job. Of course in the back of my mind I always knew that this was only temporary and that I would soon have to return home but it’s nice to feel like I’ve had the perfect job if only for a short while.

Working on the beauty desk, I got to do some pretty cool things.  My regular blog readers will know that I am obsessed with all things beauty so having my job based around that obsession was so exciting for me.  I spent my days researching interesting new beauty stories and developments as well as reading endless blogs.  I felt like I was in heaven.  I assisted the beauty girls with anything they’d need such as calling in products and speaking with PRs and I learnt so much along the way.  My highlight of my time at Vogue was having the chance to take home and review The O by Cloud 9.  This is a hair tool that I’ve lusted after for years and when it came into the office I literally squealed with excitement.  I tried it out and wrote a review for the Vogue blog and it actually made it onto the website.  I was completely overjoyed!  My writing, and my face, published on Vogue’s website.  Dream.  Come.  True.  You can find my article online here or on my bedroom wall after I print it and frame it!  Hah!

Looking back now it all seems a little surreal.  I’m currently in bed at home after getting in from a late shift at my regular day job.  Don’t get me wrong, this is another job that I do love despite being worlds apart from what I was doing at Vogue but after the excitement of the last three weeks, it was a pretty bleak Monday.  I’m remaining positive however as I know negativity gets you nowhere.  I’m focusing on my next career steps and looking at what I can do next on my quest for ‘the dream job’.  I also feel super inspired about blogging at the moment and have a load of new goodies and treats to show and review for you all so expect a lot of beauty posts coming very soon.


Tuesday, 7 May 2013

My bank holiday extravaganza!

I think I may have had the busiest weekend in the history of bank holidays.  Well, in my history anyway.  Normally my bank holidays are spent getting ridiculously hyped up for a ‘Sunday session’, getting extremely drunk on said session and then lying in bed all day Monday on the cusp of death.  Usually I love weekends spent like this but doing something different this time was a very welcomed change.

As you all know I am currently living it up in London town therefore my bank holiday weekend was always going to be a little different.  I had the pleasure of my wonderful boyfriend coming to visit me and we had a jam-packed weekend planned.  As soon as I finished work on Friday, we dumped our bags and headed out to Angel Islington for some food.  This is a great place to visit in London as it has a little something for everyone; plenty of places to eat and many a bar to get a drink.  We settled on Wagamama’s and I discovered a new favourite: the chu chee curry.  It was divine but I’ve just discovered this will soon be leaving the menu!  Try it before it goes if you’re a lover of anything Thai tasting. 

After the scorcher we had on Friday, both me and Adam excitedly dressed for summer the next day until we stepped outside and realising it was raining.  Don’t you just love how unpredictable our weather is?  After a quick change I settled on this little ensemble: disco pants, denim shirt and Adam’s seven eleven vest, which anyone who has been to Thailand will instantly recognise!

We started our journey on Oxford Street for a little bit of shopping before braking for lunch at the amazing BRGR.CO in Soho.  This burger bar has introduced the genius concept of American afternoon tea which is a load of mini burgers, desserts and fries (full menu here).  We got a glass of prosescco too which was a real treat!  The afternoon tea was great value for money and I couldn’t fault the service.  My only annoyance was the service charge which was automatically added to the bill but I think that’s something you need to get used to in London isn’t it?  We spent the rest of the afternoon in Hamley’s and M&M World before going to a comedy club on the evening.  Lots of drink ensued and it all got a little hazy after that…

Sunday morning and no hangover – what a relief!  We didn’t have time to lie in bed all day as we had another full day planned.  We had breakfast at Bill’s to kick start the day and I tried eggs benedict for the first time and it was lovely.  After that, we had a nice stroll along the canal to Camden Market before returning back to the room for a quick change as we were going to watch the sunset from 308 meters up in the clouds at The Shard viewpoint.  This was definitely my favourite part of the weekend.  It was simply magical.  The pictures we took just don’t do it justice so if you’re ever in London you will have to experience it for yourself.  I’ve never seen anything like it.

Finally, we finished off the weekend on Monday with a BBQ with my new flatmates with loads of lovely food and summery drinks.  It was the perfect end to a great weekend.  I am having such a great time in London.  It really is none stop and I don’t think I could ever imagine myself being bored here.  Tonight I went to South Bank for the first time to watch Udderbelly and it was so chilled and relaxed with loads of people sitting around having a few beers.  I could have stayed there all night.  Tomorrow I’m going to Somerset House for a photography exhibition which I’m really looking forward too. There’s just so much to do.  I don’t want to come home!  I hope you all had a great bank holiday weekend.  Just think, only three weeks till the next one but sadly I won't be in London for it :(


Wednesday, 1 May 2013

V as in Vogue

So for those of you who don’t know (is there anyone I haven’t told yet?!), I am currently in the capital, the Big Smoke, London town, whatever you want to call it, doing a three week internship at the one and only, Vogue magazine.  *Shrieks!*  Most exciting intro ever!

Although words cannot describe how thrilled I am to be here, I’m going to try blogging about my experience so I can share it with you all.  Blog posts may be intermittent as I am super busy - when I’m not working I’m out and about exploring - but I’ll do my best to keep you all updated.

Despite being hyper ever since my work placement was confirmed, the thought of coming to Vogue was also very daunting for me.  I mean, come on, it’s Vogue!  Everybody in the world has heard of this magazine unless they were born and have lived under a rock ever since.  When you think of fashion magazines, this title is definitely the one that comes to the forefront of your mind.  Because of the huge connotations that come with the word ‘Vogue’, I had some moments of sheer panic in the run up to my first day.  What do I wear?  Will everyone be nice?  Will it be like The Devil Wears Prada?

Well now three days in I can confirm that yes - everyone is sooo nice, no - it’s nothing like The Devil Wears Prada (Meryl Streep is not the boss and ‘the book’ does not exist) and for those interested, I wore a pair of silver trousers paired with a black dipped hem top and my new black pointy studded flats (Primark bargain!)  I’ve had some pretty stressful moments during my first week but I think that’s only to be expected.  I was ten minutes late on my first day thanks to an unpredictable GPS signal on my iPhone.  I frantically walked around the same two blocks for ages searching for Vogue House.  I was so flustered by the time I found it but the girls were lovely.  Panic over.  I’ve settled in well and am in absolute heaven working with all of the amazing beauty products that I usually spend all day reading about.    

Oh yes, I probably should have mentioned earlier that I’m back in the beauty deparment as I was when I did my placement at Grazia.  My time at Grazia has massively helped with my confidence levels, giving me the basic skills so I didn’t start this experience feeling like a total newb!  I’m learning more and more every day here at Vogue and having such a great time.  It really is a dream come true walking through the revolving doors each day and taking the lift up to the bright white office where the walls are adorned with every Vogue cover there ever was.  I know it’s only for three weeks but I feel so privileged to be here at all.  

Okay...enough gushing about how much I love my job.  I hope you’re all having a great week!  Do you have any nice plans for your long bank holiday weekend?  I’m so excited for mine!  I’m off to see Viva Forever tomorrow night with my lovely friend Lindsey, who is so kindly putting me up whilst I’m here.  I’m just know I’m going to feel compelled to don some bunches a la Baby Spice as soon as the overture starts.  Friday brings the arrival of Mr W and a fun filled weekend which I will certainly blog about when I get the chance.  Hopefully I’ll have some more Vogue news to update you with too! Until then...

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