Thursday, 17 August 2017

Vichy Mineral 89 | NEW SKINCARE


Vichy has had a growing presence in my skincare collection over the past few months. I've become completely obsessed with the Idealia Peeling toner and Aqualia Thermal serum and so I was very excited to try their new release; Mineral 89. It is essentially a 'Step Zero' in your skincare routine, to be used after cleansing before you apply any other skincare products. It's most comparable to a serum but I've been using a serum on top of this for extra hydration. It is honestly so incredibly lightweight and feels so much like water on the skin so is great for before makeup as it won't make your skin too creamy or greasy. I use one pump for all over my skin and I find that's more than enough - meaning this will last a long time which is great! I'd say maybe if you have drier skin, two pumps would be better but oily/normal skin can definitely get away with one. It is also ideal for sensitive skin as it is fragrance and oil free. I'm so obsessed with the packaging too - so sleek and I'm a big fan of glass packaging even if it's not so great for travelling. 

Key Ingredients: 
The amazing thing about this product is that it only contains 11 ingredients - so amazing considering ingredients lists are usually 100s of items long these days! It is 89% Mineralising Thermal Water from French volcanoes. This helps to decrease inflammation and has antioxidant properties, along with being super hydrating of course. It also contains Hyaluronic Acid which is in most incredibly hydrating skincare products as it is a unique in that it can retain lots of moisture in the skin and also helps to smooth. 

Would you try this product? Let me know your thoughts in the comments! 

Vichy Mineral 89 is available on Look Fantastic for £25 (currently on offer for cheaper!)
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Monday, 19 June 2017

Best Glowy Primers - Budget to High End


I absolutely can't do my makeup without beginning with a glowing base. I feel like it preps the skin nicely for makeup, whilst the glow shows through the foundation giving that lovely 'lit from within' look. So today, I thought I'd give a rundown of my favourites, ranging from £11 to £32. They all pretty much give the same effect, so I thought I'd provide options across all price points!

(Top to bottom: Becca Backlight Priming Filter, MAC Strobe Cream in 'Peachlite', S&G Hocus Focus)

First up is the Soap & Glory Hocus Focus. This is advertised as a 'flaw-softening illuminator' but I always use it before foundation. This has the most neutral toned colour out of the three here (by this I mean, no golden/coloured undertones) so perfect for all skin tones including super pale skin. You get 30ml for £11 and my bottle has lasted me absolutely ages. 

Next is the MAC Strobe Cream - arguably the first of this kind of product around. The one swatched above is Peachlite (there are a variety of coloured undertones on offer) so it gives off a very subtle peachy glow - I love this as it looks amazing with a tan and isn't as hard as Goldlite when I'm a bit paler. I find this is the most moisturising of the three (probably because it's primarily a skincare product more than a makeup product) so this would be my pick for drier skin. It contains plenty of vitamins along with green tea which helps to sooth skinI'd have to say this is my most used glowy primer, and I think it's the best value for money with 50ml for £25. 

Finally is the Becca Backlight Priming Filter. I got this in May for my birthday after using a sample and loving it. For me, this packs the biggest punch in the glow department - which, obviously, I love being obsessed with glowy skin. This is the best for actually priming for makeup in terms of helping with longevity etc, but it is pretty pricey at £32 for 30ml. It's very lightweight, and honestly does provide a real life 'filter' to the skin, even before applying makeup. This is my go-to for special occasions or nights out. 

Overall, I'd say each of these are all pretty much interchangeable, so if you don't have the budget for MAC or Becca, the S&G option is a great dupe. I would say though, MAC is my fave for day-to-day, and Becca is incredible at ensuring your makeup stays on all day (or night!), but you could always use your favourite face primer, then the MAC or S&G on top to get the same effect. 

Which is your favourite go-to for glowing skin? 

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Thursday, 15 June 2017

Grow Gorgeous Haircare | BRAND REVIEW



Haircare is something I'm very particular about. Having thick, curly/frizzy hair comes with both its benefits and its downfalls, and one major thing I struggle with is finding the right products to combat frizz without weighing the hair down or leaving too much product in the hair. So, for the past few weeks I've been trying out Grow Gorgeous haircare - specifically the End Split Ends serum (£19), Strengthening Oil (£25) and Scalp Detox (£28). As I've now had the chance to put each product through their paces, I thought it was about time I shared my review!

The End Split Ends serum is aimed at nourishing and repairing the ends of your hair without weighing it down, whilst encouraging healthy, strong hair growth by sealing broken fibres. I don't struggle massively with split ends, but I thought this would be a good one to try to prevent them in the first place, and so far so good. It's a very thick serum, and you only need one or two drops per use. I use it on towel dried hair and only apply to the ends - I feel it would be too heavy as a regular serum. The key ingredients are Inca Inchi oil, which helps to lock in moisture, Acai Oil, which helps with environmental damage to hair that can make it brittle and dry, and Plukenetia Volubilis Seed Oil, which helps to make hair more resistant to damage and breakage in the future. 

The Strengthening Oil has made its way into my regular haircare routine quite nicely. This is aimed at strengthening, protecting and adding shine to weak hair. Again, I wouldn't really say my hair is weak, but I definitely want to make sure it stays strong and shiny! The Chia Seed Oil creates a protective film around the hair to avoid protein loss, whilst the Beet Extract packs a punch to add more nutrients to fragile, stressed hair. I've been loving this as a last step in my routine, by running 4 drops over the lengths of my hair after blow drying and it makes it super shiny and healthy looking. 

Finally, the Scalp Detox. For me, this is the winning product for the brand, especially as I've never seen anything like this from a haircare brand before. With having curly/frizzy hair, along with regular blow drying, I can be prone to having a dry scalp, which can be so irritating and itchy. Honestly, this treatment has been an absolute lifesaver and I can honestly say I haven't suffered from a dry scalp since using this. It's essentially an exfoliater for your scalp, and I use it once a week by massaging the product thoroughly all over my scalp, leaving for 5-10 minutes, then washing it out thoroughly with shampoo and continuing with my regular haircare routine. The Castor Oil beads and White Willow Bark Extract exfoliate and act as a natural anti-bacterial. Meanwhile, the Pomegranate Fruit Enzymes exfoliate and remove product buildup. It is so cooling on your scalp, and I've not had any issues washing it out as long as your thorough with shampooing 2 times and ensuring all the beads are washed out. 

All in all, I'm absolutely loving this range at the moment - I feel like it's so underrated. Another thing I should mention is how incredible each of the products' smell!! I can't pinpoint exactly what it is, but I feel like it smells like a hair salon and so I get that super fresh, salon feeling every time I wash my hair now. If you just got one product for the range, I would have to recommend the Scalp Detox - I think it would be helpful for everyone, especially if you use a lot of hair products or you have a similar hair type to me!

Have you tried anything from this range? Let me know in the comments. 
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Monday, 12 June 2017

Look Fantastic June Beauty Box | WHAT'S INCLUDED



Hi everyone! So, I'm finally back from my blogging break - uni is finally over yaaaaaay - and ready to bring you more exciting beauty posts. First up is a peek inside Look Fantastic's June 'Wanderlust' Beauty Box. I have to say, this is my favourite one yet! This box is centred around providing in-flight and holiday essentials - which will certainly come in handy for my holiday which is just around the corner. 

Firstly is the Kerastase Resistance Strengthening shampoo. Kerastase is one of my top fave haircare brands so I can't wait to give this one a whirl - I imagine it will be great for sun damaged hair which can often feel a bit dry and brittle. This product promises smooth, stronger hair from consistent use and contains a combination of 'intra-Cylane, Ceramide R and Pro-Keratin' which all help to condition the hair. 

Next up is skincare. I really believe in treating your skin when flying, especially on long haul flights, as planes can be extremely dehydrating. The trio of products included in this months box are handy travel size containers that can be thrown into your hand luggage to use in-flight. The First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads are constantly raved about, so I can't wait to try them. They pads are an acid toner that's gentle enough for everyday use, and contains both Lactic and Glycolic Acid to gently exfoliate and brighten the skin and help to improve texture. Meanwhile, their Fab Antioxidant Booster helps to stave off environmental aggressors - like the sun, heat and humidity - so your skin stays looking its best! Follow up with the Balance Me Balancing Face Moisturiser which is suitable for all skin types as it prevents spots, controls oily skin and lightly hydrates - great for hot weather when you don't want a heavy moisturiser. It also contains Vitamin E which helps to protect the skin from environmental pollution and is a powerful antioxidant which can help with sun protection and damage (when used in conjunction with sunscreen of course). Finally, complete your holiday skincare routine with the Monu Rosewood Reviving Mist. I love a good refreshing mist, especially on holiday, so this handy travel size one will be great! It contains a variety of essential oils, including Rosewood Oil, which helps to calm and destress (great for nervous flyers!) and Lemon Oil which purifies the skin and is a natural toner that balances natural oils in the skin. The mist has tons of different uses such as an aftershave for men, a post-pedicure refresh for the feet, or just to spritz on the skin for a pick-me-up! 

Finally, two makeup products to get that glowing, effortless holiday makeup look. Firstly is the Bellapierre Cosmetics Shimmer Powder in Excite. This loose powder can be used on the face or body to get that gorgeous glow. The mineral formulation ensures it doesn't irritate the skin too! Secondly, the Hailey Baldwin for Model Co gloss included not only smells incredible, but also promises a hydrating and high shine gloss that can be used alone or over lipstick. I believe there's a couple of shade options, but I got Biz which is a gorgeous pinky nude. 

So that's my rundown of this month's box! I honestly can't wait to dig into all the products and test them out properly, but some of them will certainly be packed in my luggage for my holiday. What do you think of the products? Let me know if you'll be getting the box this month in the comments. 
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Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Look Fantastic April Beauty Box | WHAT'S INCLUDED


This is my very first Beauty Box as a Look Fantastic Ambassador, so I was super excited to see what was included - and I definitely wasn't disappointed! The box was beautifully packaged, in a beautiful peach and white box, with 7 new products to try. If you're a beauty junkie like me, this will definitely fill that beauty sized hole in your heart if you're on a budget, as all this costs less than £15! 
This month, the focus is on Natural Beauty. Now, take one look at my Instagram and you'll know that's not usually me, however, day to day, I like to give my skin a break! Plus, there's plenty of skincare/haircare to get stuck into when I fancy a pamper. Let's take a look at what's included this month...
Makeup
I'm intrigued to try the Laura Gellar Balance & Brighten powder foundation. In all honesty, I'll probably use this as a setting powder over my usual liquid foundation, but the formula looks really nice and finely milled, and the baked finish provides lots of different tones to the powder, which I imagine will stop the face from looking flat and 2-dimensional. 
Skincare
I've never tried Omorovicza before, but the Cleansing Foam looks lovely. The sulphate-free formula promises cleansing without drying out the skin and is good for all skin types. It contains Copper Gluconate which detoxifies and helps to tighten pores, White Lupin, which helps to energise & revitalise (great for AM cleansing!), and Apple Pectin, which provides hydration and improves suppleness. Sounds very luxurious! Can't wait to try this out - I imagine this will be great in the summer/on holiday when SPF can clog up the skin. Next up is the Vitamasques Pomegranate sheet mask. I have to admit, I literally used this within 24 hours of receiving the box and it was lovely! It was easy to apply and didn't feel uncomfortable, and my skin felt super hydrated after use. As I mentioned in my previous post, I'm loving sheet masks at the moment, and for £3.99, this is a lovely treat for a pamper evening. 
Thirdly is the Madara SMART Day Cream. This is aimed towards dry/very skin skin types, promising to minimise fine lines and decrease dryness in the skin so I'm not exactly the target customer but I love minis like this for when I go away and don't want to take my usual huge moisturiser! 
Body/Hair/Misc.
I'm interested to see if the This Works Perfect Legs lives up to the hype. I love stuff like this as we're moving into summer, and as this is just a mini I may try it out on my shoulders/chest for my Instagram to see if it makes much difference! It contains Vitamins C and E which even out skin tone, and Arnica helps to fade out any bruising. 
I'm definitely one of those people who always, always carries anti-bac hand gel, and this super cute one from Merci Handy reminds me of the Bath & Body Works ones as it smells absolutely amazing and is such a handy size to throw in your bag! I find a lot of hand gels can smell very alcohol-y, but this New Wave fragrance is lovely and fresh without being overpowering. 
The final product is the Alterna Caviar CC Cream for hair. You apply this to towel dried hair before styling, and it promises the following 10 benefits: moisture, shine, smoothness, softness, UV protection, manageability, strength, anti-breakage, heat protection and light hold - phew! As someone who has super frizzy, thick hair, this sounds amazing so can't wait to give this a go! It also smells absolutely amazing - very luxurious and feminine. Plus, the 5* reviews are definitely selling it to me.

So there you have it! A great all-rounder box for April and some amazing new brands for me to try out. If you'd like to know how I get on with any of them, leave a comment or tweet me
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Sunday, 23 April 2017

New Skincare Bits | FIRST IMPRESSION/REVIEW


I'm really loving getting into my skincare at the moment. I love learning about what the ingredients really do for the skin and how to tailor your routine to best suit your particular skincare concerns. I'm sharing tons of info over on my Instagram stories if you want to hear more about this! However, on the blog I can go into a bit more detail so keep reading to see whether these products are what you need in your routine...
Today, I've got some mini reviews/first impressions of some new products I've been trying out. First up is the Origins Original Skin mask. This contains Rose Clay (a type of mild kaolin clay) so it helps to absorb excess oil/impurities on the skin. However, as this is a more mild type of clay, it is gentler and less drying on the skin so is great for more sensitive skin types. Using this frequently helps to reduce the appearance of pores and puffiness too. It also contains Willowherb, which is anti-inflammatory so great for rosacea and eczema. Finally, its third key ingredient is Jojoba beads, which provide a gentle exfoliation and are often used to treat acne. These are also biodegradable so no horrible plastic beads here! 
I actually was pleasantly surprised by this mask. Whilst I don't love the exfoliating beads (I find they're a bit hard to wash off and I always find I haven't got them all off by the time I do moisturiser!), the clay aspect of the mask is amazing and my skin really did feel firmer and clearer the next day. I will definitely be incorporating this into my routine every couple of weeks or so! You can get this for £24 on Look Fantastic (this is just a sample size in the photo!).
Secondly, I grabbed one of the new-ish Garnier Moisture Bomb sheet masks. I've been intrigued to try these out as I'm loving sheet masks at the moment - mostly because they are fun to apply and I love the serum you can massage into the skin afterwards! These contain Green Tea Extract which is anti-inflammatory, and also helps to promote the health and quality of collagen, therefore giving you firmer and more elastic skin. Secondly, it contains hyaluronic acid, which helps the skin to retain moisture (great for dry skin, obviously!), along with Glycerin which is an amazing moisturiser. I loved using this mask - it's only £2.99 so a bargain, although it does suggest using one 3 times a week which would definitely add up £££! The hole for the mouth is a bit small in my opinion, but it wasn't uncomfortable and you only have it on for 15 minutes. Afterwards, my skin felt and looked so glowy, and I massaged in the excess serum, topped with my usual moisturiser and my skin felt great. I love glowy skin too, and this definitely helped with that. I have normal-oily skin so can't say how good at moisturising it was, but the ingredients speak for themselves on that one! They do have a more moisturising one for dehydrated skin called the Revitalising Mask, which may be better for super dry skin. You can buy both these masks from Boots for £2.99

Have you tried either of these skincare products? And what are you loving in your skincare routine at the moment? Let me know in the comments! 
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Sunday, 9 April 2017

Best Highlighters for Pale Skin


If you follow me on Instagram, you'll know I'm a fake tan obsessive and am usually various shades of tan in my photos! However, my natural skin tone is super pale, and so I thought I'd help out my fellow fair gals today with my favourite highlighters for pale skin. I often find some highlighters can be too golden for my paler skin, so these four picks are what I'd recommend to anyone with fairer skin who still wants a strong glow! You can see swatches of my picks below:

(L-R: Charlotte Tilbury Bronze & Glow, The Balm Mary Lou-Manizer, Makeup Forever 13 Star Lit Powder, Benefit High Beam)
First up is the Charlotte Tilbury Bronze & Glow highlighter. As you can see from the swatches, this is the most subtle of the bunch, and is great for that soft 'lit from within' look - see this look. The powder is super finely milled and works on all skin types and ages. It is the most expensive at £49 but you do also get a fantastic contour powder, which you can see I've used a lot! 
Secondly is my favourite everyday one from the bunch - The Balm's Mary Lou-Manizer. It's a gorgeous light golden shade that looks gorgeous on every skin tone, but especially paler skin. It has a hint of silver in it which means it still shows up on pale skin and doesn't look too gold - see this look. It's such a bargain at £16 (but you can get it for £13.60 from Look Fantastic!) and I've had mine for years and still have loads left. It's very glowy, but I find it to be gorgeous for everyday as it doesn't look the slightest bit glittery or over the top. 
Next up is my very over the top shade - Makeup Forever's Star Lit powder in 13. This is very metallic and is really a pigment more than a specific highlighter, but I honestly love it to get that very strong highlighted look. I know it's not for everyone but I love it! It's very pigmented, so be careful when applying as a little really does go a long way. Also  because the shade is so light, it works perfectly with pale skin again - you can see it in this look here (notice how it's not as unwearable as you might first think!), and it's also the highlighter I used in my most recent Instagram with the blue lower lashline. You can grab a pot from Debenhams for £13 (although you may have to hunt it down - since Jaclyn Hill mentioned it on her Snapchat it's been pretty hard to get hold of!).
Finally, my liquid highlighter option - Benefit's High Beam. I've had this for years (as you can probably tell by my bottle of it!) and this is a beautiful pearly pink toned highlighter. You can mix it into foundation or apply as a regular highlighter - I personally like to top it off with a powder highlighter but you don't have to! It gives a very natural sheen to the skin, as it's a liquid so is great for drier skin or a more natural makeup look. As it's more pink toned, it works well with paler skin and again you only need the tiniest bit to get a gorgeous glow - I personally don't apply straight from the brush and usually dab some onto my finger so it blends into the skin a little bit easier.

So I hope this post was helpful - I always like to see what works on different skin tones so hopefully my experiences with highlighters will help someone else out too! Let me know if you have any of these, or what you fave highlighters are below - I'm definitely a highlighter junkie so always looking for more to try! 
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Sunday, 2 April 2017

Look Fantastic Beauty Egg Collection



Today's post is all about the limited edition Beauty Egg Collection from Look Fantastic. I feel like pretty much every beauty brand leapt on the bandwagon for beauty advent calendars, however this is the first beauty Easter egg I've seen, and I love the concept! The beautifully packaged box contains 7 products - all full size except one - to give a boost to your beauty stash this spring! There's a variety of products covering makeup, skincare, haircare and body care, adding up to £200 if bought separately. However, this fabulous box is only £60 and it's going to sell out fast! So, I thought I'd get this post up super quick so you can get a peek into what's inside:


Makeup
First is the Illamasqua Hydra Veil primer. This is actually my holy grail primer - you can read more about it in my full review here. It's honestly like a glass of water for your skin, and it's hydrating qualities mean it's a great base for makeup, and believe me when I say this ensures makeup stays on all night! The second makeup product is the Laura Gellar highlighter in Gilded Honey. I was so so excited to hear this was in the box as I've always wanted to try it! It's definitely a cult favourite product, providing a gorgeous golden glow to the skin - and if you're a regular reader you'll know I'm already highlighter obsessed! Keep an eye out for this popping up on my Instagram very soon. Thirdly, the Talika Lipocils Ink brow growth and makeup pen is included in the box. Mine is in the shade Brown (I believe this is the only shade included) and claims to stimulate eyebrow growth whilst also enhancing them with makeup. 20 years of research went into making this product, so I'm intrigued to try it, although I'm concerned the brown shade may be too red for my brows, but I will let you know! It comes in a pen form, and promises to be waterproof and sweat proof so may be good for holidays or the gym. However, I do have micro bladed brows so I may not be the best judge!

Skincare
The first skincare product included is the Algenist Ultimate Anti-Aging Cream. Now, at 20, I may not be the best to review it's anti-aging properties, however, it also promises to brighten the skin (I'm always looking for ways to add more glow!). It contains Capric Triglyceride and Hydrogenated Polyisobutene which are essentially oil substitutes, so you get all the benefits of oil (like maintaining elasticity and preventing water loss) without clogging the skin, so great for anyone with oily, sensitive or acne prone skin. It also contains Alguronic Acid, which is essentially a mix of algae extracts which claim to have anti-aging benefits. 
Secondly, you get the Filorga Optim-Eyes eye cream. This also contains Capric Triglyceride, along with hyaluronic acid which helps to retain moisture and therefore smooth and soften wrinkles or fine lines. It also claims to reduce dark circles by promoting the elimination of pigmented residues, and also reducing puffiness by increasing circulation to reduce swelling. Will definitely be interesting to try this one out! 

Body/Haircare
I thought I'd round off with the final two sections. In body care, you get the Molten & Brown body wash in Pink Pepperpod. I love a beautifully scented body wash and this smells so fresh for spring. Plus, as it is travel size, will be great to take away with me on my trips this year. And the final product in the box is the Phillip Kingsley Elasticizer in the limited edition Geranium and Neroli scent. I have always loved this hair mask and have used it for years now. It makes my hair so soft and more manageable. This contains Castor Seed Oil helps to retain moisture and prevent the scalp from drying, as well as preventing hair loss. Alongside this, Propylene Glycol also helps to soften the hair to make it easier to brush through. 

So that's my round up of the amazing Look Fantastic Beauty Egg! The link to buy is here. Are there any products in there that you're eager to try? Let me know what you think in the comments. 
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Sunday, 26 March 2017

Benefit They're Real 2-in-1 Lipliner/Lipstick | WORTH THE HYPE?




I think it's been quite a while since I was all over a new lipstick launch. These days, the world of makeup is swamped by liquid lipsticks that I barely wear a traditional lipstick these days. However, when this new concept from Benefit came out, I don't think I'd been this excited to place an order in a long time! The They're Real 'Double the Lip' 2-in-1 lipliner/lipstick mash up comes in cute packaging similar to their They're Real mascara, and winds up at the bottom to reveal a thin, slanted lipstick with a darker shade and a lighter shade. The idea is that the darker shade acts as your lipliner, and perfectly blends in the lighter lipstick to get an easy soft ombre lip without the need for extra products!
I got the shade Nude Scandal (obviously!), and you can see the swatch above. As you can see, the difference between the darker shade and lighter shade is barely visible so don't let the idea of having a super dark lip line put you off as that's really not the case. 
What I really love about these lipsticks is they are not super matte (like I'm used to with all the liquid lipsticks!) - they give a soft satin finish. They are nicely pigmented and glide onto the lips pretty easily. The lipliner concept is great for the top lip, as it helps to define the lips and get the shape you want, however, it gets a bit tricky on the bottom lip as I've found myself having to turn the bullet awkwardly to get the lipliner bit to properly line the lips. It is a bit annoying but hasn't put me off using it! You also have to be careful to use both the liner and lipstick evenly, so one side doesn't wear down quicker than the other! The only other thing I'd say is that the colour range isn't fantastic, there are currently only 6 shades, but no doubt Benefit will bring out more in time. I'd say this is a great easy option for those people not wanting to spend money on separate lipliners and lipsticks as I've never found the need to use one with this product! They're also a pretty reasonable £16.50 (for comparison, a MAC lipliner and lipstick would set you back £28) and you can get them from plenty of places - I got mine from ASOS for that extra student discount! 


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Sunday, 19 March 2017

My Top 5 Liquid Lipsticks


As you'll know if you follow my Instagram, I am always wearing liquid lipsticks. Something about the formulas and the colours draws me to them more than regular lipsticks so I have built up quite the collection. So, I thought I would post about my top 5 brands to buy liquid lipsticks from. I don't have specific lip swatches to post, but I will link to makeup looks I have done with the shades as all the shades have been featured on my Instagram at one point or another! 
Number 1 
Brand: Dose of Colors
Shades I own: Bare With Me, Truffle
My absolute favourite liquid lipsticks are the Dose of Colors ones. Bare With Me is honestly my favourite lip shade of all time. It's a soft pink shade that just suits so many skin tones and is a perfect everyday shade. You can get these from Beauty Bay (usually) but for some reason they are not online at the moment, and the Dose of Colors site for around £14/$18! I rarely show Bare With Me on my Insta because I am so scared it will run out and I won't be able to repurchase! I actually last wore it on my Insta back in May 2016, but I would wear it everyday if I could! Truffle is a beautiful brown toned nude that is perfect for that 90s look. I like that it's not too brown as that doesn't really suit my skin tone, and I've never found another liquid lipstick shade quite like it. Here's a swatch of it on my Instagram. The formula is super matte, but is the least drying I've found. It also smells of vanilla which is so delicious. 

Number 2
Brand: Jeffree Star Cosmetics
Shades I own: Androgyny, Mannequin
I know there is often a lot of controversy surrounding this brand, but these liquid lipsticks are honestly incredible. They feel so lightweight on the lips (Mannequin especially just feels like water!), dry really matte and feel very comfortable to wear. You can buy these on Beauty Bay or Beautylish for around £16. Androgyny is a gorgeous deep warm toned purpley shade, although I feel that it looks very different on different skin tones. I actually bought this because it looked so gorgeous on Jaclyn Hill, but I do think it looks very different on me (see this Insta). Mannequin is probably my second favourite lip shade ever after the Dose of Colors one. It's my perfect nude shade. I feel like it suits pretty much every makeup look I do, and is probably my most featured shade on my Instagram - see here, here and here

Number 3
Brand: Jouer 
Shades I own: Melon, Petale de Rose
The Jouer liquid lipsticks have definitely done the rounds on Instagram, and I have to say I was pretty late to the game. I got these two shades in a set for Christmas (from Cult Beauty), and I'm already dying to try new colours! Melon has become my everyday shade - the perfect mixture of pink and nude that works when I'm super pale and when I'm tanned. You can see it on me here. I haven't got round to doing a look with Petale de Rose yet, but it's a beautiful strong deep pink - I'm sure you've all gathered I gravitate more towards nudes by this point! The formula of these is incredible, almost mousse like in texture and dries super matte. I would say it's slightly less long lasting than the first two I've mentioned and it does wear off after eating more noticeably. However, they are super comfortable to wear and all the shades Jouer do are beautiful and look like they'd be flattering on everyone. I have my eye on the Skinny Dip lip topper from them next!

Number 4
Brand: Girlactik
Shades I own: Posh, Bashful, Blossom, Rustik, Sweet
I have had the pleasure of working with Girlactik this year, and I have to say I've completely fallen in love with their liquid lipsticks. They are harder for us UK girls to get their hands on, but if you are in the States, stock up! They also do offer international shipping on their website. I have to say, after lusting over them on Instagram for so long, I was certainly not disappointed. My favourite shades have to be Bashful - the most beautiful neutral nude (not too brown, not too pink), and Sweet - a gorgeous muted pink. You can see my lip swatch video here, and a look wearing Rustik here. The formula is lovely, and smells like cupcakes so it gets a thumbs up from me! 

Number 5
Brand: Lipland
Shades I own: Rezy (from the Amrezy collaboration)
Lipland is a bit less well known than the other brands I've mentioned but I thought I'd give them recognition for their gorgeous liquid lipsticks. I first heard of the brand when Amrezy collaborated with them, and again, they're harder for us UK girls to get hold of, so I struck lucky when I was in the US last year and picked up Rezy. Side note: I got mine from Ricky's NYC, an amazing makeup shop that stocks lots of online/Instagram brands. You can also get international shipping on their site. The shade is a beautiful peachy pink, absolutely perfect for summer. You can see me wearing this here. I would say the formula is slightly thinner and more mousse-like than all the other brands, and not quite as strongly pigmented. However, building up the colour is fine, and once you get the finished look, it has fantastic lasting power. 

So, that is my round up of my favourite liquid lipsticks! Let me know your favourite brands in the comments below - I'm always on the lookout for new brands to try. 
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Sunday, 12 March 2017

ABH x Nicole Glow Kit vs MUFE Star Lit Powder in 13


Highlighters are definitely having a moment in the makeup industry and the moment, and I am all for it. I am obsessed with a glowing complexion so I definitely get sucked into trying any new glow-givers on the market. After I got Champagne Pop at the end of 2015, I never thought I'd need another highlighter again, but here I am! 
After Jaclyn Hill mentioned how incredible the new Makeup Forever Star Lit powder in 13 was as a highlighter, I went on a mission to find it. You can get it in Debenhams online (although it's currently sold out) and at the counters in Manchester and London for £14, and from Sephora online for $21. It's basically a loose pigment and the colour is so glowing and shimmery. I have to admit, it can come across a tiny bit glittery (as it's a pigment, and not a specific highlighter), but not to the extent where I dislike it. I've swatched it on my Instagram in a video, but you can see the swatch below:


As you can see, it is so strongly pigmented (I do find loose powders have stronger pigmentation) and it really does come up that strongly on my skin. You can see it on a makeup look here
Secondly, I also recently got the Anastasia Beverly Hills x Nicole Guerriero Glow Kit. I have been a fan of Nicole for years, and the palette was so so beautiful, I couldn't resist. The kit has 6 shades for £39 from the ABH UK site and $40 from Sephora. I love the variety of shades, and I've found I can use all of them in one way or another! I think my fave shade is Forever Lit (top row, middle shade). You can see swatches of the whole palette below:


As with all ABH palettes, the pigmentation and quality of the highlighters certainly don't disappoint, and I've also been loving spritzing my brush with Fix+ to get stronger pigmentation. I will be posting a look using loads of the shades from the palette on my Instagram this week. I feel like every single shade is wearable for pretty much everyone (either as a highlighter or an eyeshadow) so it's a really great versatile palette.
So which one would I pick? I would personally go for the ABH x Nicole palette. Firstly, you get 6 shades for the price of 2 MUFE powders (although if you just want one highlighter, go for the MUFE one - I just like to have lots of choice!). Secondly, as the MUFE one is a loose pigment, it can get very messy and I do find I'm wasting product because I pour too much out and can't put it back in the container. The MUFE one only contains 1g of product whereas the ABH ones are 4.5g per highlighter so I personally find that to be better value for money. You can also use Fix+ as I mentioned earlier to get a stronger pigmentation with the ABH ones. As a makeup junkie, I love and use both of the options, but I can see why the average person would only want to invest in one! So I hope this has been somewhat helpful. 
Let me know your favourite highlighters - as you can imagine I'm always on the lookout for new ones to try! 
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Sunday, 15 January 2017

MICROBLADING | My Experience and Before & After!


So last week, I finally got my brows microbladed. I thought I'd do a little round up post of what microblading is, what my experience was, and include my before and afters!
What is it?
Microblading is essentially a type of semi permanent makeup - not a tattoo! Pigments are used rather than ink, and does not go as deep into the dermis of your skin. With microblading, a hand held pen is used, rather than a motorised tattoo device. You can expect microbladed brows to last 1-2 years. This will depend on your skin type (drier skin will cling to the pigment better and therefore will last longer) and how well you look after them. A tiny blade is used to create hair-like strokes in your brow, to create the illusion of fullness and give them more shape. Prices for the treatment varies, but I'd say the average is £200-£250. 

My experience
Firstly, my beautician pencilled in my brow shape with a removable pencil, so we could both see where the microblading was going to go, and how my brows would look. This way, I could easily ask to change things and get the shape exactly how I wanted it. This is customised for each client, and it is measured precisely to make sure they are as symmetrical as possible. 
Once I was happy with my shape, we picked the best ink colour for my brows to match my existing brow hair. Then, she began to actually microblade. I did have numbing cream on before this began, but you can definitely still feel it. Whilst I wouldn't describe it as painful, it's definitely a little uncomfortable and it does sting a little bit after a while. I have a pretty low pain threshold though, and so if I can manage it, I'd say most people could too! The actual microblading took around 45 minutes for me. My brows weren't too sparse to begin with though, so it could take much longer if you have little to no hair. Once it was done, she put a liquid that acts as a 'liquid plaster' over the top and I was good to go!
As for aftercare, you have to wash your brows with a special shampoo every 2 hours on the first day and apply lots of aftercare cream. This will stop any blood drying and keep them clean so they don't scab over. The first night that you have them, you put plenty of cream on then apply some clingfilm over the brows (attractive, I know!) to protect them. After the first day, you no longer need to wash the brows, and you just apply the cream 4-5 times a day and overnight (clingfilm no longer needed!) for 5-7 days. Once that's done, they should be fully healed. 
One thing I should mention is that during this time, you can't really wear makeup on the brow area, to avoid irritation and hinder the healing process. For me, this has been especially hard haha! You should also avoid saunas, intense exercise, swimming etc.
The final step in the process is a touch up 4-6 weeks after the initial treatment. As I haven't had this yet, I can't share too much about it, but it's basically to ensure you're still happy with the shape and the colour etc and add any final touch ups. 

Before & After!


Hope you enjoyed this post, and it was useful if you're thinking about getting your brows microbladed! If you have any other questions, message me or leave a comment below. 
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Thursday, 12 January 2017

Pink Toned Spotlight Eye | MOTD



This pink toned spotlight eye has got a lot of love over on my Instagram recently, so I thought it was about time I did a breakdown of the look with products and a step by step! Let me know what you think of this look in the comments.

Face
- I started with MAC Peachlite Strobe Cream as a base, then followed with Illamasqua Skin Base in 8 all over my skin. I'd forgotten just how stunning this foundation is! 
- I then used my Maybelline Age Rewind concealer to highlight under my eyes, forehead, centre of the nose and my chin, and the Fit Me concealer on any blemishes. 
- To set all that, I use Laura Mercier translucent loose setting powder.
- To bronze, I used MAC Give Me Sun MSF (review) very lightly to warm up the skin, then used MAC Warm Soul Mineralize blush. 
- For highlight, I used Girlactik 'Lustre' Face Glow which is a stunning purple toned highlight (see my review here) and topped it with the purple shade from Sleek's Solstice palette (review here). I applied both of these on the tops of my cheekbones, down my nose and on my cupid's bow. 


Eyes
- I first filled in my brows with Anastasia Dip Brow in Chocolate and MAC's brow pencil in Lingering.
- Then, I cleaned up underneath and primed my eyes with MAC Pro Longwear concealer in NW15.
- I started off with 'Red Ochre' from the ABH Modern Renaissance palette and buffed it all over my crease and lid (missing out the centre portion of the lid). Then, I deepened that with 'Love Letter' from the same palette. Blend this on the outer and inner part of the eye until you get the depth and colour you want.
- I then took Pink Champagne (also from ABH) and started packing that onto the centre of my lid. I found that this worked best with a wet brush (I just spray Fix+ onto my brush) as the sparkle in the eyeshadow really came out nicely with that. I then just blended my Red Ochre and Love Letter in so there were no harsh lines and just kept adding colour and blending until I was happy. 
- I followed the same pattern on my lower lash line - using the red tones on the inner and outer portion, then packing Pink Champagne into the centre. 
- I applied Benefit They're Real mascara onto top and bottom lashes, then added my House of Lashes 'Siren' lashes - these work especially well with spotlight eyeshadow looks as they're fuller in the centre. 
- To highlight, I used the same Girlactik and Sleek highlighters mentioned above on my tear duct and brow bone. 

Lips
- For lips, I just applied MAC Soar liner to outline the lips, then went in with Jeffree Star 'Mannequin' liquid lipstick (review) - I'd forgotten how stunning this colour is, and I always get questions whenever I wear it! 


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Monday, 9 January 2017

How I Became a MUA | Tips + Advice!


I posted the picture above on New Year's Day as a little reflection on 2016 - the first image was taken December 2015, the second December 2016. I hadn't even realised how much my makeup skills had improved over the course of the year! In 2016, I also qualified as a Makeup Artist, and then went on to get a job with MAC - something I never would have imagined happening! I had a couple of requests to share more about how I became a MUA and some advice etc, so here's a comprehensive post all about my experience. I may also do a separate 'How to get a job at MAC' post if that's of interest too. 
How I got started
For me, makeup has been a love of mine since I left school at 16. I started off watching YouTube tutorials and reading blogs, and to this day, it's still something I favour over watching TV or Netflix. I think it's really important that you're sure this is for you before you pay for a course. Therefore, I recommend being self-taught to some level - there's so many amazing makeup channels out there, and honestly practice makes perfect! Another thing I've found really helpful is starting my makeup Instagram - this is something I've fully thrown myself into from the beginning of 2016, and I can't believe how much it has grown. Getting amazing comments and feeling really part of the makeup/beauty community has motivated me to keep going and keep trying out new looks and techniques. Getting featured by amazing brands also makes me strive to improve - if you'd like to see a post about growing your Instagram let me know too! Therefore, I'd highly recommend starting a makeup Instagram if you'd like to become a MUA - it's so interesting to see how much you improve. Doing this for a good few months made me sure that I wanted to become a qualified MUA and it wasn't just a phase.
Getting Qualified
The first thing I'd recommend when you're sure you want to get a qualification is to do your research. I never realised quite how many makeup courses were out there and all the different things they offer. First consider exactly what kind of makeup you want to do. For example, I didn't really want to do SFX makeup, so knew the courses including that weren't for me. There's so much out there from media, TV, SFX, face painting etc so pinpoint exactly what it is you want to learn. Then, I'd think about the following questions:
- How long do I want to do the course for? I wanted to get qualified ASAP, so I chose a 12 week course but there are courses that run for 1+ years.

- Is it a day or evening course?
- Do I want a recognised qualification or just a course with a MUA? For a job in the makeup industry, you really do need a recognised qualification from someone like VTCT. If you just want to learn some skills for your own makeup, or to top up after doing a recognised course, then I'd say to do a course with a MUA or studio. These aren't recognised in the industry, and could prevent you getting a job!
- How much do you want to pay?
I eventually chose a course with Chill Out Training Academy which was Level 2 in Makeup. Personally, if you feel you are quite strong with makeup, I'd go straight for Level 3, as I felt this was a bit too easy for me (but the course was shorter so I stayed with this one). Once I got this qualification, I had already got my job at MAC so I basically just started with that! Alongside this, I also do freelance makeup - for that it's all about advertising - use Instagram, Facebook etc and good old fashion business cards are great too. A lot of salons allow you to rent chairs to use for freelance makeup, so that way you have a base, rather than travelling to clients' houses etc. And with freelance, it is definitely a case of practice makes perfect - whilst you are studying, try and do as many makeups as you can, just to get practice on different face shapes, skin types and tones as the more experience you have the better! 

I hope this post is somewhat helpful if you're looking into becoming a MUA yourself! As I said, if you'd like a post about how I got my job at MAC, let me know (I thought the post would be way too long if I joined both of them together!). If you have any other questions, don't hesitate to email or DM me. 


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