FOTD and a Product Review – Mascara

Hey Girls!

 

Thought I’d pop up a little FOTD for everyone so you guys can see what I wear on a ‘hardly any makeup’ day. It was one of those days when you get up, look outside, sigh at the weather and decide you can’t be bothered making an effort!

 

Face: Lancome Teint Miracle in 010, MAC Select Coverup Concealer in NW20, Topshop blush in Head over Heels and Bourjois Chocolate Bronzer in 52. 

 

Eyes: Naked Palette (Sin all over lid with a tiny bit of Buck in the crease) and L’Oreal Voluminous (Review to come)

 

Lips: Vaseline Cocoa Butter and YSL Rouge Voulpte in 01 Nude Beige

 

My hair looks brown in this photo when in fact it is dark red! Odd indeed.

 

Onto a little product rave. My mascara combo of the month has been YSL Faux Cils for length and Collection 2000 False Lash for volume.

 

However I do have to say, come on YSL! I love the formula of Faux Cils but not the fact it dries out in a month and I can’t afford to keep buying it! This mascara is amazing for length but the time it lasts compared to other less expensive brands is frankly ridiculous. I still love it for its longevity and non-flakiness though, it would be my Holy Grail mascara if it wasn’t for this one major issue.

 

Yet there is a new contender for my affection on the block! I’d heard a lot of good things about L’Oreal Voluminous, so the last time I was in Boots it happened to fall into my basket, whoops… 

 

I got the Carbon black version which claims to add 4x more volume without clumping.Whilst I have doubt about the 4x volume claims the product is giving me length, a fair bit of volume and is non-flaky and suitably black enough for me: you all know what I’m talking about, when a product that promises to be ‘black’ is actually grey…

 

It may not add as much thickness and texture as I usually like, but I am a fussy person when it comes to my lashes and usually combine two mascaras anyway to get the look I want – tons of length, volumes and heavy duty thickness. So if anyone can recommend something to partner with this mascara I would be open to suggestions!

 

Here’s a quick look at the effect on my lashes:

What do you think guys? What’s your Holy Grail mascara?

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Excellent Customer Service – Guerlain

Hey girls,

 

I don’t know about you guys but sometimes the thought of going into a department store and asking for help at the beauty counters terrifies me! There’s something intimidating about all the day-glo, black suited women standing behind the counters looking vaguely bored as you wander in their direction. In my experience (I’m looking at you Chanel!) the women behind the counters very often seem absolutely disinterested in giving you help in a kind informed way; all too often I’ve actually felt as though I’m interrupting their precious time by asking to be colour matched to a foundation.

 

Plus there is the added nightmare of makeup looking fabulous under the store lights then looking like you’ve been in a wotsit factory explosion in daylight. Yes Dior, I’m thinking of the time you made me bright orange!

So today when I ventured into Debenhams on my hunt for a new foundation it’s fair to say I wasn’t expecting much other than to sneak a few samples from the tester pots.

 

However, when I arrived at the Guerlain station (inspired by all the lovely ) I couldn’t have been more surprised by the lovely SA there. She took the time to listen to what I was looking for (full coverage, matte finish, heavy duty) and to give me some genuinely good advice. Added to this instead of merely taking off the foundation on my chin to colour match me, she did my whole face as well as my concealer, powder, contour and blush. All this combined with a lovely smile and friendly chat made me feel extremely comfortable in asking questions and for some samples.

 

Overall this made what is usually a traumatic experience for me into something I enjoyed greatly because I felt I was really being listened to and my preferences taken into account; instead of just being used as a guinea pig to pile products on. Plus I came out looking natural and not tangoed. Well done!

 

A couple of pictures of the foundation the SA recommended, Parure Extreme, which is a little more full coverage than the Lingere de Peau but has the same semi matte beautiful finish I love. I’m testing it out today to see how it holds up and will do a more detailed review later but so far I am impressed. I have dreadful skin: acne, discolouration, scars, you name it I have it, so I’m very pleased with the full coverage of this foundation.

Have any of you guys tried Parure Extreme? Or any other recommendations for a full coverage, matte finish foundation?

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Rimmel Moisture Renew Lipstick – MAC Rebel Dupe

Hey ladies!

A quick review to you today of the lipstick I mentioned in my recent OOTD post – the Rimmel Moisture Renew Lipstick in Dark Night Waterl-oops.

This is without a doubt my new favourite Winter lipstick shade. I scoured Boots for ages looking for the perfect bitten, sexy berry stain and was sold as soon as I swatched this on my hand I was sold. I don’t actually have MAC Rebel, but from swatched I’ve seen online, this shade is very close to it, and for half the price who can complain at that!

I was really impressed by the revamped Moisture Renew Range. I must confess I hadn’t paid much attention to them before but I am enjoying the new packaging and colour range, as well as the cute new names for everything! This lipstick has a very creamy texture and glides onto the lips smoothly and is opaque pretty much as soon as you slick it on which I love – no fans of sheer textures on this blog! I would say that because it is so creamy you are better off using a lipliner with it, as I have found this can bleed a little, which is no biggie for me but I know it can annoy others. This lipstick has pretty average staying power, it will pretty much last on me until I decide to eat or drink something, so no staining but again, this doesn’t really bother me. I don’t find it too drying which is a major plus in this weather as well. The packaging is pretty and functional and has a nice clicking action which means I have no worries about it unlocking in my bag.

 

I can’t get over the colour! It is just gorgeous and I would highly recommend it if you want a dark, deep, sexy winter lip colour.

What are your top winter lip picks?

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Fitness Fridays are Still here No Worries

Fitness Fridays are still here no worries! I just had a crazy busy week and little motivation myself last week!

The subject of the next few weeks is toning up for summer! I’m going to show you guys some of my favourite moves for different parts of my body. Most of them are small movements so my basic routine is:

Small effective movements + lots of reps = pain of the pleasurable sort 😉

Today we are focusing on the Butt.

I rock a ghetto booty, which I love, but which takes a lot of work to keep in perky, short loving,  attention grabbing shape. So, as you can imagine, I do a lot of booty exercises.

1.

Squats are the number one exercise to do for your lower body, for a good reason – they burn more calories than any other move. I love them to bits and do quite a few variations of them. My first is the basic squat you see above. I usually do this in a mirror to check my form is correction. Second is a plie squat, which involves widening your stance, point your feet to side and then squatting. Sounds pretty, is a massive killer. Take it up a notch by never dropping your heels to the ground when you are doing your 50 reps. Makes it that much harder and kills your calves as well. Lastly I like doing duck squats. As ridiculous as they sound, I dare you to try and do 20 without collapsing. Basically you get down into a low squat, as you would do normally, as your starting position. Then you squat again, getting you butt as low to the floor as possible before rising up into normal squat position.

Usually makes me want to die or throw up.

2.

Bridges! I love doing these because you can feel the pull in your backside as you work – something I get a lot of sadistic pleasure out of. I like to do a lot of variations of these as well. 1. Basic raise and lower into bridge, clenching that butt as I go. 2. Bridge with one leg lifted straight out. 3. Bridge with one leg raised straight in the air. 4. Bridge with one leg resting on the other in a 4 shape (ouch ouch ouch). 5. Bridge pulses raised on the toes of your feet, as in the above picture. See, no need to get bored when you have so many variations to get through! Your butt will thank you!

3.

Glute kickbacks are another favourite of mine because the movement is so small but so effective. You can do these the normal way as shown above, or you can do them standing up, balanced on one leg with your upper body stretched in front.

4.

 

Single leg circles will kill you because you make the mistake of thining they look easy. Whether you are doing them on your back or side, with your leg straight up or held aloft to the side, these are the bomb. Like I say, they start of all easy, but put yourself on a timer and see how easy it is to keep that leg up there after 7 or 8 minutes. Then reverse it…

Your booty with be in pain by the time you take that leg down.

5.

Clamshells are a pilates move, and like the leg circles, are small enough to seem easy at first, but 50/100 reps later you’ll be feeling muscles you didn’t know existed. You can do these lying down and standing up, with weights or stretch bands. I prefer to do it on the floor and start of with 3/4 minutes of normal clamshell and then 3/4 minutes of elevated clamshell, which is where you life your bottom lower leg from the floor and carry on the simple open and close movement. I am shaking by the end of it.

6.

Finally, lunges. Walking, static, with weight and without, this is just a good all round body exercise. Remember to check your form though, it is so easy to screw it up with this exercise!

 

So there you have it! My favourite butt exercises. I do a lot of others and mix up my routine but these babies pretty much always have a place in my week. Especially the squats, damn I love squats…

 

 

 

What are you favourite exercises? What part of the body do you want to see next week?

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The Perfect Pair – Contour

Hey Ladies,

I’m back and all in one piece! Although considering I almost didn’t get there and back due to the snow I’m gonna consider myself a lucky girl – my friend didn’t get back until 5 in the morning!

Today I want to talk about a pairing that I’ve been loving in my make-up routine for the last few weeks. Like most girls, I would ideally have modelesque cheekbones that popped without any help. Now, I’m lucky enough to have quite high cheekbones, but not high enough that they don’t need a little help.

This is where MAC Harmony blush and the Real Techniques Blush brush come in handy. MAC describes Harmony as a ‘muted rose-beige brown’ and I think this is probably quite accurate. I could never use this as a blush, it’s way too dark, but it’s very good as a contour. Thank you to all the makeup artists  who recommended it to me. The slightly pink tone stops it from being too orange and too muddy. My detailed review of the RT brush can be found here and I would highly recommend it for contour. This is the perfect pairing in my opinion because the RT brush can be used to apply the contour quite precisely whilst buffing out the edges at the same – voila! Natural contour and two jobs done in one. I love this for a day look because Harmony is a very soft colour that blend well and which can be built up to create the desired effect.

So there we are, my daytime contour pairing, though I would accept all recommendations for more contour powders! It’s the bane of my life I missed out on the taupe/grey Chanel powder!

MAC Harmony retails for 17.50 and can be found here, and Real Techniques brushes can be found online, but I like to purchase mine from Boots where the Blush brush retails for 9.99.

What do you think about contouring? What do you use?

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Roaccutane – Last Chance Saloon

Hey Ladies,

As some of you may know from following my blog or my rant on twitter I have bad skin. I’ve had severe acne since I was thirteen years old and since turning 21 have decided to take medical advice to try and rid myself of it.

I’ve tried every skincare regime, gadget, magic potion and over the counter medication out there. I’ve also had numerous creams, topical lotions and antibiotics from the doctor. I’ve cut out things rom diet, tried different forms of exercise and took the drastic step of doing nothing at all. Nothing has worked in the long term and to say that at 21 I’m tired of it would be an understatement. I’m sick of the scarring, the constant redness and the discomfort, both physical and mental.

For other health reason I have not been able to try roaccutane before now. I am fully aware of the long list of possible side-effects but as someone who is at the end of their tether I’ve reasoned that if I don’t try I’ll never know. I can not explain how much it would do for my self esteem to be able to wake up in the morning and not want to cry at the mirror.

I’m going to document my progress weekly on this blog because I think some of you might be interested. I’m also asking if anyone has experience the treatment themselves to drop me a comment, tweet or email. I’m a bit nervous so hearing from people would be a great help!

Back to the beauty posts tomorrow but I just wanted to let you guys know why my actual face might not be appearing in photos anytime soon.

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July Favourites and a Maintenance Day

Hey Girls!

 

How are you all doing this lovely sunny day? I for one am glorying in being able to laze about for the day before going to work. However I am also having to have what I call a ‘Maintenance Day’. Basically when I come home from the boys every few days I have to do all the beauty stuff that I can’t do there! So today this includes doing my fake tan routine (post on this coming up), redoing my nails, deep hair conditioning, waxing and tweezing! Generally making myself beautiful for him again! He refuses to have all my stuff in his flat because I’ve taken over his dressing table already and he hates the smell of fake tan sheets…

 

Combined with the lovely weather and the good company I’ve been put in a very good modd and have finally be able to take some pictures to post for you all! So without further ado, here’s some of the things I’ve been loving this month.

 

 Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Night Cream: Origins Spot Remover: Vaseline (Cocoa): OPI Skull and Glossbones and Mermaids Tears: Tweezermans: Sleek Barely There: Mac Hue (not pictured): Elemis Pro-Radiance Cleanser: Xen Tan Dark Lotion.

Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Night Cream:

 

I got this a part of a set which also comes with the day cream and I love them both. This cream is intensely hydrating and you only need the smallest dollop to make you skin baby soft. Plus I know some people hate it, but I love the smell! Reminds me of the beach and the sea. Expensive but worth it in my opinion.

 

Elemis Pro-Radiance Cleanser:

Now usually  Cleanse and Polish devotee, and don’t misunderstand I still love the stuff and use it occasionally, but this Elemis cleanser has knocked it off the top spot. This product leaves my skin unbelievably soft! As in baby soft, whilst at the same time doing a fantastic job of removing all the grime from my skin. You apply the thick cream and leave it on for a minute before removing it with a cloth (you can even give youself a mini facial to work the product in) and boy does it work! Will be repurchasing this wonder for sure!

Origins Spot Remover:

I’ve been whacking this on every day and night because I’ve been having a horrific month skinwise! You would think I’d be growing out of it by now! I do credit this with helping clear up some of the painful spots quite fast. I think this actual one has been discontinued and they’ve brought in a super blemish remover: same packaging with blue writing I think.

Perfect tweezers! That’s all I can say. Holy Grail

OPI In Mermaids Tears and Skull and Glossbones:

I cannot even describe how much I love these colours! I want every other colour from the Pirates of the Carribean range as well. These are the only colours I have been wearing this month and I find both look so classy on the nails. The best way I can describe them is creamy. The only bugbear I have is the formula is a bit streaky and it takes 3 coats to get them properly opaque. Sort it out OPI!

Xen Tan Dark Lotion:

My favourite fake tan by far! Gives a gorgeous colour, doesn’t streak, fades well and a bottle lasts me a month and half using it at least once a week.

 

Cocoa :

Nom nom. Only way to describe this stuff. My lips have been drier than the Sahara so this stuff has been essential!

 

Sleek Barely There:

This is a new purchase because my Superdrug has taken an age to get stocked up with Sleek stuff! It is the perfect nude, very much a MLBB colour, and I enjoy the formula and the sheen on it.

Mac Hue:

My lipstick and product of the month by far. Sorry it isn’t in the original photo, I thought I hadn’t put it in my bag coming home! Silly me. After seeing this on blog I knew it had to be mine! It’s the perfect peachy pink nude and I’m loving the formula. Good wear and lovely smell – who could complain! I’ve been really getting into my lip products the last few months and this has been my go to for most of that!

What have been your products of the month? Any recommendations for me?

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Beauty And Accessories Haul

Hey ladies!

So here we go, a little compilation of all the things that I picked up in the Big Apple. I picked up some underwear and sports bra from VS as well, but I don’t quite feel like splashing my underwear up here quite yet!

I was really chuffed with what I picked up and had a lovely time browsing all the shops. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll actually be able to look and buy something in all those fancy shops on 5th Avenue.

Two things I love the most in the world (bar beauty of course) are book stores and meditation. I’ve been really into meditation for helping my anxiety over the last 6 months, and I have an old book I’ve been jotting my meditations down in, but it is quite past its best, to say the least. I saw this journal, and although I’m not, it really resonated with me. It’s gorgeous and each page has an inspiring quote on it for you to meditate on. I had to have it and it’s going to be my 2014 meditation journal to help me through the good times and the bad.I miss that book store already.

I love inspiring quotes! You should see the length on my pinterest board dedicated to them! I have cards and magnets like this from all over the world and I really need to gather them all together and get them stuck up around my mirror. I think that that is going to be my creative project for the weekend. Sometime when I’m having a bad day I just like to look through them all and feel motivated.

Of course, being a beauty addict, I didn’t just visit one, I visited multiple ones across the city, including the flagship store in Sq on 14th St.

Can you say heaven?

I spent many happy hours browsing all the brands and swatching to my hearts content. I only wish I could have brought more back, but hand luggage only can be quite a pain in the butt when it comes to such things! I was really impressed by the upbeat atmosphere of the stores and the super helpful and friendly staff. I really enjoy being in them, and they always send flutters through my little beauty bloggers heart.

Eventually I narrowed down my choices to a few things that have been on my list. I picked up the Perfect Hair Day from Living Proof, partially because of the amazing Jennifer Aniston’s support for the brand, and partially because my favourite, loves the stuff and her hair is the epitomy of incredible.

Another Youtuber enabled purchase was the Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara which I am super excited to try out, as you all know, I love me some fake looking lashes! I love the packing of this, it’s so girly and fun.

I was really impressed by the colours and lightness  so I picked up the colour Berry Blast, which I am hoping is going to be a perfect light stain on it’s own and a layering piece for under berry toned blushes. Very excited to work out the correct method to use this stuff.

Lastly, I’ve been wanting to try some high coverage concealor’s for ages to help cover some of the old acne scarring on my cheeks. I’ve heard great things about this one, and also about the MUFE HD one, but something about this one just called my name. I love the packaging and am keen to test it out in the next few weeks.

I don’t think that I missed a drugstore in all! Seriously I made sure to visit all of them, including some hidden gems etc, you name it, I visited it. I have to say that I was super impressed, they have so many fun brands and it was great to play with things that I’ve never heard of! I picked up:  a tube of my favourite mascara, L’Oreal Shocking Extensions; the much hyped up Blush (my god was this hard to find) and Liquid Eye Eyeliner; and one of the bronze Maybelline Colour Tattoo Pigments, which I imagine will be out here soon.

When nail polishes cost 8 here, and $8 , there is no way that you aren’t coming home with a few right? I stocked up on some bright colours for S/S, which for some reason I have non of at the moment! Very keen to try out the Zoya brand because I was so impressed with the bright colour range. I also picked up a bottle of Seche Vite because it still is the best topcoat I’ve ever tried.

my favourite department store ever. I was absolutely blown away by it. Take me back!

In all honestly, there were so many amazing jewellery brands there I was caught up for forever looking and admiring them all. One brand I would up purchasing, a stacking bracelet brand that works with reclaimed metal to create unique pieces that all have a positive energy identity. I love the whole concept, and as I love brands that you can collect things from, this was a dead ringer for my soul. I picked up the feather and serpent in russian gold because I know they will clash beautifully with some silver pieces in my collection. Currently having a browse of the website and hoping for international shipping soon!

Finally, I could not resist this adorable little mug that I picked up. I love tea in in my country, but not here, isn’t that odd?!

I hope you enjoyed my haul! I love stores and I can’t wait to go back. They just do everything better in my opinion: clothes, food, department stores. Bliss.

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Sunjunkie Fake Tan

Hello lovely ladies!

Summer may be over, but with Christmas Party Season fast approaching the imminent prospect of getting out legs out is enough to put the fear into most women! Fear not though, I have a range of tanning reviews coming up for you and I thought that I would start with this impressive little number – Sunjunkie’s Instant Tanning Mousse.

 

I was sent this a while ago but only just got round to trialling it last week, and I have to say I quite like it. Nothing is ever going to match up to how much I love my Xen Tan Dark Lotion, but this little budget number is very good!

 

First off, it applies in a mousse form, so you need to be careful when deploying it from the packaging as it will expand rapidly! It goes on well, though it is a little drier feeling on the skin than any other tan I have used, but doesn’t have a very obvious guide colour so keep an eye on what you’re doing!

I slept on it and, major plus point, it didn’t get any residue on my sheets at all. I woke up in the morning to a lovely even looking tan, even on problem areas like my feet and hands, and was impressed by the distinct lack of orange tone or streaks on any areas I usually screw up with my slap happy application. What I really enjoyed about this tan was that it keep it’s depth of colour when I showered, something that most tans can’t seem to do on my skin for some reason. It was a lovely mid-brown colour, enough to make me look healthy, but not too dark to make me look obviously fake tanned.

I found this tan lasted about 5 days on me, and most importantly, faded relatively evenly with a distinct lack of patchiness! It does have that fake tan smell, but as I’m yet to meet a fake tan that doesn’t I suppose it can’t be helped.

Sun junkie are a very professional brand who also do a lot of spray tan stuff as well as this self tanning side, so I’d recommend having a mosey around their website.

Overall, a thumbs up from me, and I will definitely be using this for some of my Christmas night occasions!

 

What’s your favourite fake tan?

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SBC Collagen Moisturizing And Nourishing Creme Shower Gel  

Hey Ladies!

 

A quick review for you today of a product that I have been testing out for the past few weeks in my shower routine. SBC is a brand that usually flies under the radar, but I know my mum and a lot of ladies in their 40’s enjoy the range, and that QVC tends to do a good trade in it. They do a lot of products focused on collagen (though no-one will ever knock Elemis in that category for me) and I was send this shower gel, with passion fruit and kukai seed oils to try.

 

This product is aimed at dry, dehydrated and mature skin types, and it meant to leave you as moisturised as if you had whacked on a body lotion by the time you come out of the shower.

 

 

 

I like this stuff, it gives a good lather, it smells nice but not overpowering and it doesn’t leave a film on the skin. In terms of hydration, I would say that it is more hydrating than your average shower gel, so if you’re in a rush in the morning you could probably skip a moisturiser. However, I wouldn’t say it replaces the moisture I like to get from a lotion and I do enjoy slapping on my cream after a night time shower!

 

Overall, a nice products and one I enjoy using, it’s just not so super special that I would choose to buy it over anything else! There are luxury ones I want to try, and also drugstore ones I think can do exactly the same thing.

 

What are you favourite shower gels?

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