Saturday, 29 June 2013

L'Oreal Superliner Perfect Slim

I’m still struggling to perfect the winged cat-liner look.  It looks amazing on so many people and I really want to learn how to get it right but no matter how many YouTube tutorials I watch or how many times I practice, I still don’t get it right every time.  However, one thing that has helped me get better with it is the L’Oreal Paris Superliner Perfect Slim liquid eyeliner.  Wasn’t that a mouthful?  After many recommendations I picked this up in Superdrug and although I’m not completely blown away by it, it is a good product and worth a mention.

The best thing about this liner has to be the nib.  It’s really thin which allows you to get very close to the inner corner of your eye and create neat clean lines.  It gets wider towards the base so you can draw thicker lines by applying different pressures and holding the pen different ways.  The liner as a whole is very similar to a felt tip pen so it’s really easy to simply draw the line onto your eye as you would if you were colouring in.  Well, maybe with a little more caution.  

The colour payoff is pretty good and it stays a true black throughout the course of the day unlike some liquid eyeliners where the colour fades to grey.  The only issue I have with this liner is that it sometimes transfers to the crease of my eye and it doesn’t rub off easily.  This is probably due to my eyes being quite deep set and not the product itself as it doesn’t budge otherwise.  The Superliner has definitely helped me with my retro flick technique so if you struggle like me I would give it a go.  I’m not quite there yet however so any other product or technique suggestions are very welcome!


Monday, 17 June 2013

And it was all yellow

 Dress - Zara
Shoes - Topshop
Watch - Casio
Nails - Models Own Pukka Purple

How amazing is this dress please?  Canary yellow in colour, interesting bat-wing sleeves and a length that screams sexy yet sophisticated.  I wish I could call this little beauty my own but it’s another lend from a friend.  I usually treat myself to a new outfit whenever I go out but I’ve got so many social events this summer that my habit is starting to break the bank.  Instead I’m depending on the girls to help me wear something fresh but not new.

As this is the kind of dress which does all of the talking, I decided to keep accessories to a minimum when I wore it on Saturday for a friend’s birthday.  I couldn’t resist however pairing it with these purple heels and nail polish.  The shoes are an old favourite of mine from Topshop a few years ago.  I love the unusual mismatched heels and gold detailing on the points.  I don’t get a lot of wear out of them but love pulling them out of the box now and again.

Hair wise I went for something a little different for me: straight and smooth yet still with plenty of volume.  It’s nice to change it up sometimes and I must admit this look was a lot easier to achieve than my usual big bouffant.  Just a quick spritz of volume spray and an upside blow dry and I was good to go.

As usual I had a very good, very drunken night with the girls to the point that I’m still feeling a little worse for wear today.  How is that even possible?  Nevertheless, I’ve got an exciting week ahead.  I’m seeing Rihanna in concert with the girls on Thursday and I’m off to London with the mister to see The Killers on Saturday!  Eeek!  I can’t wait!  Happy Monday to you all!  Have a great week!


Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Nourish Protect Hydrating Moisturiser

Nourish is a skincare brand which has only recently popped up on my radar.  I hadn’t heard of the brand or knew much about it until I interned on the Vogue beauty desk and was lucky enough to pick up the Nourish Protect Hydrating Moisturiser.  I can safely say this has fast become my ‘moisturiser of the moment‘, a very big claim for me if I do say so myself.  It’s surprisingly light and non-greasy for a cream which penetrates and hydrates dry skin so well.  After a few uses of this product I instantly noticed a difference in my skin, especially on the drier areas such as my nose and forehead.  My face looked fresh and rejuvenated and before I knew it I was hooked and need to find out more about the Nourish range.   

The nature lovers behind the brand strive to bring us skin and body products made from natural, organic, kind-to-skin ingredients.  The Hydrating Moisturiser in particular is 84% organic and is bursting full of orange and mandarin oils and plenty of vitamin C, which explains why my face looks brighter whenever I use it.  The label has cute sketchy drawings of orange segments that hint at the subtle citrus fragrance of the cream, which is very refreshing on a morning.

Free from nasty chemicals such as paraben, silicone and unnecessary colourings, all of which the skin doesn’t need, Nourish aim to make nothing but lovely stuff to put on our faces.  There are four different ranges to choose from, all designed with different skin types in mind.  They are Relax for sensitive skin, Balance for combination skin, Radiance for normal skin and then of course the Protect range for dry skin which is home to the Hydrating Moisturiser.  Generally I would say my skin is combination so I’ve been eyeing up some products in the Balance range but I’ve been using this cream all over my face and haven’t found it to be too heavy so I think the Protect line works well for me too.  I apply this to my face every morning before my primer and make up and it keeps my skin hydrated all day without looking oily or shiny.

As I didn’t pay for this product I had no idea how much it cost.  Based purely on how well it works for my skin, I was expecting to find Nourish to be a really high-end, expensive brand so imagine my surprise when I discovered that this 50ml jar costs only £14.95!  I couldn’t believe it!  I thought I’d fallen in love with a product that was going to set me back at least £40 - £50 every time I needed to repurchase but joys of joys, it’s really affordable.  I’m very impressed.  A skincare range that really works and doesn’t break the bank.  Nourish, you have yourself a new fan.


Monday, 10 June 2013

A girl's best friend

 Top - Primark Limited Edition
Shorts - Topshop
Bag - Mulberry
Shoes - Very

Having not worn anything ‘blogworthy’ at the weekend I thought I would show you an outfit I wore a few weekends ago for a night out with the girls.  It was a hot bank holiday and I didn’t feel like wearing a dress so I thought I would mix it up a little and bring out a pair of shorts.  I can’t remember the last time I wore a shorts and top combo to hit the town.  When I was younger it was literally my failsafe outfit option: a pair of black shorts, a jazzy top, a staple pair of opaque tights and loads of plastic jewellery to complete the look.  It’s safe to say I’m glad I branched out a little with my choices.

Fast forward a few years and here I am in what I think is a much classier ensemble.  My top is from the Limited Edition section in Primark which I think is great for finding pieces which are a little nicer than your average Primarni goods but still come with a purse-friendly price tag.  I love the gold chain detailing and I think it makes the top look a lot more expensive than it actually was.  The shorts are plaid (I think that’s what you call it) and have a very intricate woven design which again makes them feel a lot more luxurious than they actually are.  The frayed fringe detailing is also very cute and adds a little extra length so I don’t look like I’m rocking hotpants!  But onto the thing I love the most about this outfit.  Did you spot it?  It’s a real life Mulberry bag!  Not mine of course but a lovely ‘lend from a friend’ which compliments the pink in my shorts perfectly.  Maybe one day I will have my very own mullers but until then I shall continue to lust over this one!

I fancied something a bit different for my hair as I felt my usual ‘soft curls with lots of volume’ look was getting a little boring.  I decided to go old school and ask my friend to pop two skull plaits into my hair whilst it was still wet.  The results, as you can see, were nineties style beachy waves.  I was happy with it but it looked even better the next day when it had dropped a little and the waves had relaxed.  Looking back, I think I must have took subliminal inspiration from the cute little bichon frise puppy we were dog-sitting that weekend.  Isn’t he the cutest?  I think he makes the perfect accessory!

I will add that both the puppy (Chester) and the Mulberry (Dusty) have been returned to their rightful owner, my fabulous friend Nat, but if anyone out there would like to buy me a puppy or a handbag, or even a puppy sitting in a handbag with a pink ribbon in it’s hair, please just let me know.  A girl can dream can’t she?


Sunday, 9 June 2013

MAC Neon Orange Lipstick

MAC’s All About Orange collection is now available in stores and wow, there’s so much love for it!  I thought the colour orange would be something that most people would shy away from but it seems a lot of people are feeling rather brave and embracing it.  And why not?  It’s such a gorgeous collection.  How are we supposed to resist?  I’ve already reviewed the Sweet & Sour lipstick, a peachy, cutesy orange which I’m obsessed with, but here’s a little something on the opposite end of the orange spectrum for you.  

Neon Orange is a super bright shade which really packs a punch.  Probably not for the faint hearted, this colour screams ‘look at me‘ whilst staying classy and remaining very wearable.  If I’m being honest I don’t think neon is the right word to describe this colour.  Looking at other MAC lipsticks, I would say the likes of ‘Show Orchid’ or ‘Candy Yum Yum‘ were truer neon shades.  I think this is a very, very bright orange but I know that doesn’t sound half as good for a lipstick name so I can see why MAC went with what they did.  The amplified formula means that the colour applies opaque to the lips in one or two slicks and is very rich.  Despite being so pigmented I find it still leaves a trace of gloss which feels really moisturising.  There’s nothing worse than when you love the colour of a lipstick but it really dries your lips out.  

I know there’s a lot of comparisons currently being made between this and MAC’s cult shade Morange but I haven’t tried the latter so I can’t comment yet.  Morange is on my lust list so I shall give you my two cents on the matter once I’ve tried it out.  I’m in no rush though because Neon Orange is fulfilling all of my ‘loud orange lipstick’ needs right now.  I wore it one night last week to help change my outfit from day to night and it instantly picked me up.  My face looked brighter and even my teeth looked a little whiter.  The things a little bit of lipstick can do eh?  Amazing!  Another fabulous offering from the All About Orange collection!  


Saturday, 8 June 2013

Avon Eyeshadow Primer

I’m no eyeshadow expert.  In fact, I’m pretty hopeless with the stuff and often end up looking more like a sad panda than a screen siren when I attempt a smokey eye.  One thing I do know however, is that the first step to successful eyeshadow application is a good base and I think I’m on to a winner with Avon’s Eyeshadow Primer.

This tiny little pot of joy brings me so much eyeshadow happiness.  Applied to clean eyelids, this product absorbs any oily residue which can cause your colour to crease and creates a smooth canvas for your shadow.  A little slick of this, and I literally mean a smidgen as it blends out really well, and my eyeshadow not only looks brighter but it lasts longer too.  I used it for the first time before a big night out to create a golden smokey look.  It really brought out the colour of the shadow making it shimmer and pop.  Many hours and many cocktails later, I stood in front of my bedroom mirror to examine the damage.  My hair resembled a bird’s nest (too much whipping it back and forth) and my foundation had caved under my disco induced sweat, but low and behold my eyes were perfect.  Not a smudge in sight and still as bright as when I left the house.  I was amazed.

Whether you do or don’t use an eyeshadow primer already, you should definitely give this one a go.  Like I said, I’m a newbie when it comes to creating perfect eye looks but this has really improved my application.  You can buy it online for £7 but I seem to remember picking it up a little cheaper from the brochure so it would be well worth a look at one first.  We all know an Avon lady right?  If not, let me know and I can put you in touch with one as I know a load of girls who are on commission for selling the stuff.  Am I?  No, they’re not paying me.  I just love this primer so much I would rave about it all day for free.  Trust me, you won’t be disappointed.


Friday, 7 June 2013

Ojon Restorative Hair Treatment Plus

A good hair mask does wonders for reviving your locks and restoring goodness when you hair needs a little TLC.  I am currently loving the Ojon Restorative Hair Treatment Plus which deeply treats are repairs damaged hair.  I reached for this last week after I’d gone a little too crazy with my backcombing the night before.  As we all know, backcombing does wonders for hair volume but nothing for the quality so it’s important to nourish the hair if you’ve been a little harsh with it.  Cue this little beauty from Ojon.

The first thing that stands out for me with this mask is the consistency.  Not your average squeezy-bottle-lotion type formula, the mask takes the shape of a solid wax in a sturdy little pot.  Using the scoop/comb that comes with the mask (I use a spoon as I’ve lost my scoop), I take 1 - 1.5 teaspoons of product and pop it in the palm of my hands and begin to rub them together.  The wax melts like butter and soon has an oil like consistency.  It’s at this point I begin to lather it through my hair and then comb it from root to tips.  I do this again and again until all of my hair is covered in the mask and it begins to look wet.  It soaks quickly into my hair, penetrating the follicles and really getting to work.  I don’t know if it’s just mind over matter but I can feel the treatment working straight away.  

The mask has a very natural, earthy, wood-like smell which makes the product subtle enough to leave in overnight if you want to.  If I’m not mistaken, I think the fragrance has been re-formulated as I remember reading reviews on this product a couple of years ago and a lot of people commented on it’s very overpowering, almost unbearably strong smell.  It’s good that Ojon took note of this and made some changes as it seems a shame for anyone to write this product off just because it doesn’t smell too good.

After allowing the treatment to work it’s magic for a good twenty minutes, I jump in the shower and shampoo and rinse as normal.  When I dry my hair I can instantly see a difference.  It’s smoother, feels softer and has a gorgeous salon-like shine.  It feels a lot healthier too and I start to feel less guilty about the rigorous backcombing.  Any product that can do that is definitely worth my money!!  How much will this little gem set you back?  A 100ml sized tub is £32.50 which I think is a decent price for a good, reputable brand like Ojon.  A little goes a long way with this treatment so it will last a fair amount of time if used weekly as recommended.  I’ve noticed you can buy smaller tubs too so if you don’t want to fully commit to the full sized product, why not treat yourself to a little taster 50ml size for £16.  Go hair wants you to.  


Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Real Techniques Core Collection

L - R: Contour Brush, Pointed Foundation Brush, Detailer Brush, Buffing Brush

My first experience of Real Techniques was with the fantastic, ever-popular stippling brush, which makes applying liquid foundations and cream blushes an absolute doddle.  A few uses of this brush and I was hooked.  I couldn’t wait to try out the brand’s other offerings and so after much deliberation over what to get next (there’s so much choice!), I settled on the Core Collection set.  These four brushes come with a handy brush carrier/stand and are what you need in your life to create a flawless looking base for your make up.  Each brush does a different job so I will give you my thoughts on each individually:

The Contour Brush is a medium sized fluffy brush designed to make contouring your face just that little bit easier.  I don’t know a great deal about contouring.  I know the basics and always give it a go when I’m doing my make up but I’m yet to transform myself into ‘Queen of the Contour’ Miss Kimmy K.  However, this brush has really helped me start to get it right.  I apply a generous amount of matte bronzer to the bristles, suck in my cheeks and start gently buffing the powder under my cheekbones.  The brush head fits perfectly into the hollows of my cheeks which gives a great guide for where I need to be applying the product.

The Pointed Foundation Brush does exactly what it says on the tin and is used to apply liquid foundation to the face.  I haven’t used this brush a great deal as I find it a little on the small side to apply a full face of foundation but it is great for application when you need a little more control.  I find it comes in very handy for blending concealer on those bad skin days when I apply it in larger patches on my face and eye bags.

The Detailer Brush is a teeny weeny little brush designed to use to apply your lipstick.  I don’t use it to brush my lipstick onto my lips because I’m far too lazy for that but I do use it to apply concealer around my lip line to neaten up my pout.  Most of these brushes do have multi-uses and I find myself using this to touch up my concealer in the nooks and crannies of my face.  It’s great for getting under my bottom lashes when I’ve gone a bit too ‘smudge-crazy’ with the eyeliner.  

The Buffing Brush is by far my favourite brush from the four.  It’s the reason I bought the Core Collection set as you cannot buy this brush separately and as you can tell from the foundation filled bristles, I couldn’t wait to use it and excitedly did so before I photographed it (naughty naughty!)  This brush provides a flawless finish when used with either liquid or mineral foundation and I couldn’t be more impressed with it.  The bristles are just the right length: long enough to buff the foundation into your skin but short enough so you keep control.  I’m not left with any streaks or patches on my face but instead a really fresh complexion.  This has definitely replaced the Stippling Brush as my most-loved Real Techniques brush.

And there you have it!  Four fantastic brushes for a very nice price of £21.99, which is another thing I love about Real Technniques, they’re such great value for money.  I can’t wait to grow my collection further.  The Powder, Blush and Expert Face brushes are all on my lust list.  But which do I go for next?  I think I may just need to get them all.


Sunday, 2 June 2013

Old becomes new

 Jumpsuit - ASOS (very old)
Necklace & bangles - Primark
Shoes - Very
Bag - Next

It’s most disappointing when you have your heart set on a dress and it doesn’t work out the way that you planned.  Either too big, too small, too revealing or just not fabulous enough, this week after a long search, I was left with three dresses to return and nothing else to wear the night before my work’s annual summer BBQ.  I say nothing else to wear but like most girls, I do have a wardrobe wardrobes packed full of clothes that I could re-wear but don’t want to.  I like to buy something new for special occasions but after trying and failing to find something that I loved, I was forced to delve into the wardrobe ‘Narnia-style’ and find something old which I could make look new again.

This is what I plucked out.  A white, cheesecloth jumpsuit from ASOS which has been a favourite of mine for many years now.  It always comes on holiday with me because it looks great towards the end of trip when I’m sporting a golden tan.  It’s full length with gathered bottoms which are tight around the ankles however I pulled the legs up so it looked a little different to how I normally wear it.  I love how big and baggy the legs of this jumpsuit are although they can be a little impractical at times.  I was getting out of the taxi, after a few cocktails might I add, and I caught the heel of my shoe in the fabric and it pulled the whole jumpsuit down around my waist.  Amazingly nobody else saw so I was spared a lot of embarrassment but it was definitely one of my ‘not-so-chic‘ moments.  Paired with my new favourite shoes (which I just can’t take off) and a bright bag, I think it makes for a rather nice summertime outfit.  Thankfully we did have some sun yesterday - imagine wearing this in the pouring rain?!  Not a good luck.

This outfit has made me realise that I don’t ALWAYS need to have something new to wear and with a little bit of effort, some new accessories and a nice bouncy blowdry, you can reinvent any outfit.  I’ve saved money too which means I can spend twice as much on my next shopping trip.  That is how it works right?

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