31 October 2014

What's Your Beauty Horror Story?

uk beauty blog
In homage of Halloween I thought I'd share will you some beauty horror stories. We all have them; Whether they are overheard in the toilets, passed down through generations or something that has happened to you. Here are some of my awkward experiences for your amusement. Don't try these at home.

- Already 15 minutes late I realised before leaving the house that my legs were quite hairy. It was summer and I wanted to show off my new Tammy Girl dress so I swung my legs over the bathroom sink, grabbed my razor and started shaving sans water. Dry shaving is never a good idea unless red, painfully sore legs is the look you're going for.
- When I was 13 I decided one day my bottom eyelashes were too long. To put a stop to this madness I cut them off. They grew back all prickly and I couldn't blink without wincing for three days. 
- My Mum asked me to dye her eyebrows for her so I did. After applying the dye I went away and completely forgot to go back and remove it. The solution was left on for twice as long as it was suppose to. She didn't appreciate her new black brows and surprisingly she's not asked me to do it again.
- When I was younger I thought my sideburns made me look like a boy so I cut them off and hide the evidence under my Mum's bed.
- In year 6 I watched in amazement as my friends huddled in the school toilets applying Typex to their teeth to whiten them. 
- I once witnessed a friend spray her lady sparts with deodorant followed by her immediately regretting  the decision as the burning began.
- I love a good bargain but buying waxing strips from the 99p store was not a good idea. I'd never tried waxing before and chickened out on the first strip so spent an hour in the bath crying whilst trying to delicately peel it off. 

Please share your beauty horror stories so I don't feel so bad. 

30 October 2014

Halloween Makeup Inspiration

I'm typically quite unprepared when it comes to Halloween. I'm not one of those people who plan their costume or even what they're doing on the 31st. This year I've come up with a few beauty picks which will make getting ready for Halloween a whole lot easier. You probably already have most of these beauty bits in your stash anyway! Think of this as the ultimate lazy girls guide to Halloween, you're welcome. 

If there's just one must-have makeup item you need for Halloween it's black eye liner. It has a cornucopia of uses. Use it as lipstick, to draw spider webs on your face, create a skull mask or get the perfect cat eye look. I like the No7 Stay Perfect Line and Define liner in 'Black Shimmer' as the colour has a hint of sparkle to it. Up the eye game with a strong smokey eye like seen on models at Roberto Cavalli. Use The Joan Collins Misty Blacks & Silver Quad* to create a smoulderingly spooky look. Take the white shade and apply to the inner corners, then blend the darkest two colours on the outer edge of the eyes. The pigmentation of this palette is excellent and perfect for adding some glamour to your Halloween makeup. Pair the look with slicked back hair and nude lips. If you don't have nude lipstick, pat concealer over the lips. I find the Bourjois Healthy Mix Concealer not too drying. For your base you could either go for the extreme matte look using something like Glo & Ray's Velvet Two Way Cake Powder*.  You could apply this all over your face, brows and lips for a zombie-like complexion. Alternatively you could channel your inner Edward Cullen and apply the L'oreal Lumi Magique Primer. The luminous white base will give you a creepy alien-like sheen. If you didn't want to go for black or nude lips there is something very Halloween-y about a deep red pout. Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvets do not budge once dried so perfect for fright night. Don't forget those talons too. Opt for an almost black shade if you're no good at nail art for a effortlessly simple Halloween nails. 

What are your Halloween plans this year?

27 October 2014

Dry Skin Saviours

I love Autumn but I hate what I does to my skin. The cold weather can wreck havoc on skin, lips, cuticles - you name it, and it's probably dry. I like to switch up my routine to adjust to the new season. Just another excuse to shop really. Here are some beauty products my skin has been drinking up lately.

Avene XeraCalm AD*
Designed for babies, children and adults who suffer from dry, eczema prone skin. The cream is formulated with the ground-breaking biotechnological active ingredient I-modulia®. The ingredient manages to teach the skin to protect itself correctly against allergens and bacterial infections. It helps to greatly reduce itchiness, redness and irritation, as well as repairing and disrupted skin.
Nivea In-Shower Body Moisturiser
Anything which makes moisturisering easier is already in my good books. This acts like a conditioner for your skin so you apply it after washing with shower gel. Once rinsed off, skin if left feeling silky and hydrated. I can skip using a moisturiser with this which means an extra ten minutes in bed - YES!
Dove Purely Pampering Body Oil*
Using an oil in the winter is a quick way to update your skincare routine. This is the best drugstore oil I've come across and easily rivals those double the price. The pistachio scented oil melts into skin quickly and doesn't feel greasy.
Trilogy Rosehip oil
With the harsher weather my skin needs something with a little more omphf. I like to use an oil as well as a moisturiser and this one from Trilogy does the job nicely. 2-3 drops of this skin-loving oil helps re-nourish my skin and also even skintone.
The Body Shop Almond Lip Butter
Although it's white appearance makes my lips disappear into my face this is a great lip balm. I apply a thick layer before bed and in the morning my lips feel soft and conditioned. The almond scent is a nice upgrade from the usual Vaseline.

What are your dry skin saviours for Winter? 

26 October 2014

LDN: SKINS Gradual Tan Lotion Tone 2 Review

Now the summer has well and truly called it a day it's time to turn to sunshine in a bottle. The latest self tan I'm testing out comes from lifestyle beauty brand, LDN: SKINS. As well as having a luxurious range of tanning products they also offer professional salon tanning treatments.

What I love about the brand is that you have full control over the depth of your tan by choosing what 'tone' you want to achieve. I went for tone 2 as I wanted the colour to be noticeable but still believable. The whole range is designed to enhance and not falsify your complexion.  The lotion can be used daily to build up an intense, bronzed colour but I found using it just once a week was enough for me. The pump bottle makes this easy to measure how much you need to apply. The lotion is also slightly tinted so you can see where you've applied it. It has a subtle lavender fragrance which is a nice change from the usual self tan scent. The free tanning mitt this comes with has a velvet texture and is the best tanning mitt I've ever tried. The silky fabric allows for effortless application and makes the whole process feel that little bit more luxurious.

It's recommend that this takes 6-8 hours to develop so after applying in the evening, I rinse of in the morning. I'm left with a natural looking, golden colour that looks like I've spent a weekend in Morocco, instead of sitting slumped on my sofa watching Doctor Who which is what actually happened. The lavender fragrance disappears and there is no detectable scent. The colour lasts around 5 days on my skin and fades elegantly.

My days of dodgy fake tan are over, hallelujah! No weird smell, natural looking, no streaks, long lasting... I could go on but you should really try this for yourself. 

LDN: SKINS Gradual Tan Lotion Tone 2* rrp £24.00.

24 October 2014

Why You Should Invest In Lip Liner

how to use lip liner

Lip liner used to scare me; It conjured up images of Victoria Beckham, Pamela Anderson and basically anyone else who wore lipstick in the nineties. This put me off trying lip liner for ages until I discovered it powers after reading Lisa Eldridge recommend it. 

My favourite way to wear lip liner is to use it as a lipstick. I trace my lip line with a pencil followed by shading in the whole lip. This looks really nice worn alone and is great for altering your lip shape and creating the perfect pair of pillowy lips. You can also layer a lipstick on top, this will help your lipstick stay on longer too. To avoid the lip line looking too harsh and unnatural, gently rub the edges with your finger tip to blur the outline. If you wanted a more natural look you can add a subtle hint of colour by applying lip liner over lip balm. To cheat a Jolie-esque pout, apply a gloss in the center of your lips and cupid's bow over your chosen shade of liner and say hello to your new bee-stung pout.

My go to brand for lip liner is No7. I love that the pencil doesn't need sharpening and that the formula is nice and soft which helps to apply the product. 'Nude' is the perfect my-lips-but-better shade, slightly pink with a hint of brown. I also adore 'Blush' which is a soft, delicate red. Rimmel and Max Factor also do good lip liners. 

Thanks to celebrities such a Kylie Jenner being pro-liner it seems more people are embracing its lip-enhancing goodness. If you're yet to try it I recommend giving it a go, let me know how you get on!

23 October 2014

5 Mini Reviews

Alchemy Grapefruit Hair Remedy* £17.99
I'm a huge fan of oils. Face, hair,body, nail - any kind of oil will do. This hair oil is a cocktail of 5 oils designed to improve the condition of and strengthen your hair from within. I tried massaging this into dry hair before washing out and also used it on the tips of damp hair. After both methods my hair was left feeling heavy and slightly greasy looking. I found this just too oily for my hair which is a shame as it smells lovely!
Dove Intensive Care Leave-In Conditioner Spray £3.59
I have naturally quite dry hair so I have to use something after washing to keep it hydrated. To apply this you spray over damp hair or use it on dry hair for an instant, healthy boost. The spray leaves my hair feeling incredibly soft and less frizzy. This sprays out in a light mist so would work well for those with fine hair. It also makes my hair smell beautiful, always a bonus.
Maybelline Brow Gel 'Dark Blonde' £4.99
My brows have a mind of their own. If I didn't use brow gel I'd end up looking like Hagrid. This tinted gel comes in three different shades, I have the shade 'Dark Blonde' which isn't overly pigmented. The product looks natural once applied but I had trouble using the big brush. The wand has a ball on the end making it difficult to use on the ends of my brows. I get on better with a more traditional style wand so I don't think I'd repurchase this.
Roger&Gallet Body Sorbet* £14.00
The new hydrating sorbet body lotions from Roger&Gallet are perfect for the drying,colder months. Available in 4 different fragrances; I have Gingembre which helps to firm the skin and also stimulate the mind. The lotion has a very light, almost water-like texture which melts into the skin quickly without leaving a greasy film. Skin is hydrated for up to 24 hours and left deliciously perfumed.
Sali Hughes: Pretty Honest hardback* £22.00 
I love a good beauty book but this one is different to anything I've read before. You won't find unachievable makeup tutorials, outdated tips or over-photoshopped models here. Pretty Honest is  full of smart, practical advice for real women. It's funny too, I love Sali's honesty and straight talk. There's no beauty bullsh*t in here. Chapter's include - 'To Wax or Not To Wax', 'Teen Beauty' and 'Saving The Best For Now'. A really interesting read for anyone obsessed with beauty. This would make a great Christmas gift and I've seen it a bit cheaper on Amazon here.

Have you tried any of these products?

19 October 2014

Beauty Advice I Would Give To My Younger Self

Aaah those innocent younger years of experimenting. I spent most of middle school with no eyebrows, cringey blonde highlights and an over powering scent of Versace Red Jeans. Mum, why did you not stop me? I've burnt all photos of me from 2002-2009 and come up with a few beauty tips I would give to my younger self.

- Don't cut off your side burns. Everyone has them, they are normal.
- Cheap shop bought wax strips will end in you crying in the bath trying to gently remove the strip.
- Don't share mascara.
- Hair mascara is never ok; unless it's for fancy dress then proceed.
- Don't put Typex on your teeth to whiten them.
- Powder should not be worn alone all over as foundation.
- Stop picking split ends, it's just making them worse.
- Expensive products don't always mean they will be any good.
- Your mum knows best.
- Stop trying to cover up your freckles.
- Don't buy that foundation three shades darker than your skin colour because you want to look like you've spent 2 weeks in Ibiza.
- Stop rimming your entire eye with black kohl liner.
- Always wash your hands after self tanning.
- Don't shave your eyebrows or anywhere on your face for that matter.
- Stop matching your headband with your cardigan and tshirt.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

18 October 2014

TK Maxx Beauty Haul

If you didn't already know, TK Maxx stock some really good beauty brands. I often see brands such as Neom, Elizabeth Arden, Real Techniques, This Works, Ciate, Estee Lauder and Dior plus loads more. I made a visit to TK MAxx  last week during their Big Brand Beauty Drop where they dropped millions of beauty products instore. As every store is different you may not be able to find the exact same products as me but I'm sure you'll find something you will love.

Korres Suncream Face Cream Yoghurt SPF 30 £9.99
Skin Therapy Cosmetic Blending Sponge £4.99
Essie Nail Laqucer in 'Mind Your Mittens' and 'The Girls Are Out' £7.99 for two
Chesapeake Bay Candle in '05 Golden Amber' £7.99
Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap £3.99
IntensivEye Collagen Under-Eye Pads £4.99 for 5 treatments
Stylfile S-file £2.99

Have you checked out TK Maxx for beauty bits? 

15 October 2014

La Roche Posay Effaclar Anti-Blemish System Review

la roche posay effaclar duo system review

La Roche Posay fans listen up, you're gonna want to hear about this. Their cult beauty buy Effaclar Duo is now available in a three step kit for your skincare pleasure. Effaclar Duo+ is the only product I'd tried from the brand so I was intrigued to see how I would get on with the new system. It combines three simple steps designed to combat oily, blemished skin. The kit claims to provide visible results in just 24 hours and significantly clearer-looking skin in 4 weeks. I've been using these products for just over a month now and here's how I got on.

Purifying Foaming Gel Cleanser
I tend to avoid foaming cleansers because I read they aren't good for your skin. I haven't had any trouble using this wash which doesn't leave my skin feeling dry or stripped like some can. To use, you wet hands, lather a small amount and massage into skin. It doesn't have a strong scent and is suitable for sensitive skin. The thick gel helps to reduce excess sebum and remove bacteria which may lead to spots. My skin is left super soft after using this and ready to move onto the next step! 
Clarifying Toner
New to the UK and designed to reduce the appearance of pore size and mattify the skin. It's quite hard to tell if this does make my pores appear smaller but my skin looks matt and feels smooth after use. The soothing toner is gentle enough to use twice a day and controls my oily t-zone.
Effaclar Duo+
I've used this product in the past and enjoyed it. I've only been using this on my blemishes and used a separate moisturiser to hydrate the rest on my face. It does help to reduce to appearance of red marks and unclogs pores. Read my full review here.

I'm impressed that all the products are full sized so they should last around 6 weeks. My skin is clearer but my blemishes haven't gone entirely and a few have recently appeared on my chin. I'll continue to use these three products in the hope that it quickly gets rid of any new spots and doesn't cause scarring. I love how affordable La Roche Posay is, especially considering all their products are such high quality. Oily skin gals might want to give this kit a go.

The 3-step regime* is £32.50 and exclusive at Boots here

14 October 2014

Autumn/Winter 2014 Nail Varnish Trends

autumn winter 2014 nail trends
(l-r Collection 'Poison My Ivy', 'Daredevil', Maybelline 'Bare It All', Essie 'Mind Your Mittens', OPI 'Metallic For Life', L'oreal '617', Collection 'Gold finger' and 'Silver Moon')

When I think of autumnal tones I imagine greys, navy skies, mossy greens and dusty reds. The A/W catwalks were full of these classic wintry shades and beauty brands have launched a smorgasbord of nail varnish shades for us to ogle at. Here's my serving of my Autumn mani must-haves:

Collection Hero Nail Varnish Range
The latest additions to the Collection Lasting Finish range definitely have an Autumnal look to them. The wide brushes make for a super speedy manicure and the gel finish gives a brilliant shine. The new Hero range includes 'Gold Finger' a dark green gold, 'Poison My Ivy' a dark forest green, 'In The Shadows' a deep grey shade and 'Daredevil' a 90's red with a hint of brown. These kind of shades ooze Halloween too, which one should I go for?
Maybelline Colour Show Stripped Nudes in Bare It All
If you're not into dark tips, nude nail were seen at Ellie Saab. Natural looking nails look so clean, elegant and sophisticated - perfect for those I-have-no-idea-what-colour-to-paint-my-nails days. 'Bare It All' from the Stripped Nude collection is a beige-y grey shade similar to Barry M 'Lychee'. Just 2 coats are need for full opaqueness.
Essie in Mind Your Mittens
Almost black nail polishes are an great alternative if you didn't want to rock black nails. 'Mind Your Mittens' is a dark teal shade with a hint of black, it looks almost grey on.
OPI Metallic For Life
Metallic nails were seen on catwalks such as Libertine and Badgley Mischka. They always look great on nails during the party season. I recommend getting a metallic topcoat so you can jazz up your existing polishes. 'Metallic For Life' consists of chunks of silver, black and white glitter - it looks amazing on it's own layered with 3 coats.
Collection Galactica in Silver Moon
If you want to try the metallic trend but hate glitter polishes go for something like this from Collection. The silver polish gives tin foil-esque nails. These polishes are perfect for trying out new beauty trends on a budget. I reviewed the new range here.
L'oreal Colour Riche in 617
Grey nails look great in the winter especially with your new fluffy white Zara jumper. There is something very chic about grey nails, I love '617' from L'oreal which is a pale grey shade.

What colours will you be opting for this A/W?

Don't forget to enter my giveaway to win 1 of 5 limited edition Dove totes!

12 October 2014

What Product Can't You Live Without?

We all have that one beauty item we couldn't live without. For me, concealer is my security blanket. I first discovered it's majestical powers when playing with my Mum's makeup. I was born looking tired and my dark circles were making me feel insecure so I rummaged through my Mum's makeup bag and came across a Max Factor Pan Stick which I smeared under my eyes like war paint and my dark circles were gone! I thought it was the best thing ever but I actually had two orange stripes under my eyes which wasn't my greatest make up moment. As a teen I quickly became obsessed with teen magazines such as 'Girl Talk' and 'Shout' and I remember reading that you should use a yellow concealer to hide dark circles. I spent a whole weekend hunting down the NYX Yellow Corrector which I would pat on followed by applying the Natural Collection Liquid Concealer using my 'Forever Friends' mirror. Those two makeup items boosted my confidence so much, I was hooked on the stuff.

My affection for concealer has increased throughout the years. Like any relationship it has had its bad days. There was the one that creased like crazy, the one with highlighting particles which looked more like glitter and the one that actually managed to make me look even more tired. I've tested pretty much every concealer on the market and I don't think I've found the one yet.

My dependency on concealer isn't healthy. I buy the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in bulk just incase I happened to misplace all nine. Some people carry lipstick in their handbags for touch-ups, but I always tote my -yep you guessed it- concealer. It's not yet become an addiction, I can venture out in public without the good stuff but a pair of sunglasses is needed as a replacement.

I will always love concealer. Watching your insecurities fade away as you apply it is so satisfying. It makes me feel better about myself and I don't feel ready for the day without a little concealing. Is it possible to be in love with a makeup item? Don't be silly. This is stronger than love.

Can you relate? What's your cosmetic security blanket?

11 October 2014

Degustabox September Review & Discount Code

degustabox review
Another month has passed and I have another Degustabox to share with you. It feels like not long ago I reviewed the last one! Want to hear about the goodies I received in September's Degustabox? Read on to find out...
Burts Lentil Waves
If you fancy a change from normal crisps you have to give Lentil Waves a go. They are similar to Quavers but smaller and crispier. The light, crunchy textures makes these so moreish! The Thai Sweet Chilli flavour were my favourite.
Jordans Simply Granola
Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day so I was excited to see this generous bag of granola. It's a simple honey and oats flavour meaning you can add anything you want. I've tried it with yoghurt and dried fruit which was really nice.
Bahlsen Pick Up Bars
A thick layer of chocolate wedged between two biscuits, what more could you want? I received a packet of 5 Black 'n White and 5 Milk Chocolate bars. Both are very enjoyable and make a nice treat.
Crabbie's Alcoholic Fruits
I hadn't tried ginger beer before but these fruity varieties were delicious. My favourite flavour was Raspberry & Rhubarb which still had a hint of ginger but nothing over powering. These are a nice change from the flavoured cider drinks I've been having, I'd definitely purchase some of these!
Nestle Carnation Milk
A versatile cooking creme perfect for thickening curries, carbonaras or even quiche. It contains half the fat of single cream making it a great healthier alternative.
Little Miracles Drink
Little Miracles are light refreshment drinks which infuse organic tea and super fruit juice for thirst quenching, natural energy boost. I love that the drinks are free from artificial flavours, colours and sweeteners. Great for health conscious people too as they are less than 90 calories per drink. Not only are these organic drinks great for you they taste amazing. The Ginger & Lemongrass one was my favourite as it had a warming kit to it. I had a go at making overnight oats with the Green Tea & Pomegrante drink, see below for a recipe!
Elizabeth Shaw Dark Chocolate Mint Thins
Fans of After Eights or Match Sticks take note because you're going to love these. Elizabeth Shaw isn't a brand I've tried before but I would recommend as these taste delicious!
La Vieja Fabrica Marmalade
I'm a huge marmalade lover. This spread over granary bread for breakfast is all I've been living on this week. A zesty, tangy treat which is a nice change from jam.
Righteous Dressing
These little pots are made using only 100% natural ingredients. I'm not too keen on dressing so I passed these onto my parents and they loved them and said they would purchase them.
Overnight Oats recipe
A really simple but delicious breakfast you can prepare the night before. You just need 1 cup of rolled oats and 330ml of Little Miracles Green Tea & Pomegranate juice. Combine the two ingredients and let sit overnight in the fridge. You could always add dried fruit or nuts in the morning.

Degustabox is a monthly food subscription box which costs £12.99 per month. You can get £3 off your first box by using the code - JW2CD

10 October 2014

What Is Your Beauty Legacy? + Dove Tote Giveaway

Women hold the power to build self-esteem in young women. As a Beauty Blogger I feel responsible for getting out a positive message about beauty. It's not all about vanity and having no self worth because you enjoy wearing makeup. Being interested in beauty shouldn't be a negative thing, anything that makes you happy should empower you. As part of Dove's Self-Esteem Project they want all women to embrace their beauty so they can make a difference to those they love. Documented in this short film shows how the women in our lives can affect how we feel about ourselves based on how they feel about their own appearance.
I really recommend watching the  film, it's very thought-provoking and has made me think about how I want to create a positive environment for any young girls in my life. You don't realise what a big impact you have on the others around you. I'm often complaining to my younger sister about my beauty niggles. I've never considered it may be having a negative impact on her. Leading psychotherapist and Chair of the Dove Self-Esteem Project Advisory Board, Susie Orbach says: "A girl grows up absorbing the behaviours and attitudes of their family members, especially her mother's, and making them her own. These behaviours and attitudes form the foundation of who they are and how they feel about themselves." If I were to ask my Mum what she didn't like about herself I know she would say her teeth and nose and I would say the same about myself. New research from Dove revealed that a third of Mothers admitted that their child had mimicked their negative beauty behaviours. I don't think women are aware quite how much young girls are absorbing the body language and words they use to describe their own appearance and applying it to themselves.

Every women has the opportunity to make a difference to a girl's self-esteem. Dove wants all women to embrace their beauty so they can make a difference to those they love. Dove is inviting women to pledge their positive beauty legacy by sharing who in their life inspires them using the hashtag #FeelBeautifulFor. I want to feel beautiful for my little sister so she grows up strong, happy, confident and free from the pressure of beauty stereotypes. 

Want to win a limited edition Dove tote like the one pictured above? I have 5 to giveaway to my lovely readers. To enter simply comment below who inspires you to feel beautiful for. Open to UK residents only, winners will be announced on 17 October. Leave your twitter handle or email address in the comment so I can get in touch if you win. Good luck! 

9 October 2014

Collection Galatica Nail Varnish Range

collection galatica nail polish
The pastel hues of summer have long been gone from my tips and have been replaced with something a little more wintery. The new Galatica range from Collection is perfect for Autumn/Winter with the metallic finishes being bang on trend. I don't like wearing these kind of colours on my fingers but I'll be alternating between these three on my toes all season. The range consists of the three colours above; 'Galactic Gold', an opaque gold shade, 'Shooting Star' a light shimmery silver and 'Blue Moon' a dark blue with hint of metallic purple. The later has to be my favourite but I love the whole range, mainly because the galactic colours remind me of Doctor Who and I'm a Whovian at heart.

The Galatica range* from Collection is available now from Boots and Superdrug retailing at £3.19 each. 

8 October 2014

Witch Bursting Beads Face Wash Review

witch bursting beads facial wash
I've been a fan of Witch skincare products since I first starting getting interested in skincare in my early teens. Fast forward to my twenties and it's a brand I still continue to use. I love how affordable the brand is and that Witch use natural ingredients. Their latest launch is the Bursting Beads Face Wash which I've been testing out.

The new face wash contains little blue beads that burst once massaged into the skin and release witch hazel. Witch hazel naturally helps to tackle spots and refresh skin. I use this by squeezing a small amount onto wet hands then massage for 30-60 seconds in small circles on my face. The gel-like texture foams up and washes off without leaving my skin feeling dry. The result - perfectly balanced, baby soft skin. This would be particularly good for those with oily/combination complexion. This face wash + the Witch Blemish stick is helping me keep those pesky spots away.

Witch Bursting Beads Face Wash* £3.99 available at Superdrug. 

6 October 2014

My Go To Beauty Brands

I'm a highstreet girl at heart and there are a selection of brands I make a beeline for when I pop to Boots. Over the years I've tried a whole heap of different products and these brands get my seal of approval. 

Lip Butters and the ColorBurst Balm are two of my favourite lipsticks. I get quite dry lips and these are both really hydrating. Revlon was a brand which was introduced to me by my Mum. She recommend the ColourStay foundation (a favourite of mine) and I decided to try out some of their lip product when they launched Lip Butters. Four lip butter and six ColourBurst balms later and I'm hooked.
Rimmel is a brand which reminds me of being in my teens. It was so easy to get hold of and all my friends used it. The first product I tried from them was the Stay Matte Pressed Powder which I used to wear alone as foundation, nice. Now I've think I've tried nearly every product from Rimmel and it's a brand I can trust. I love Rimmel bases including the Stay Matte foundation, Lasting Finish Nude and Wake Me Up. I highly recommend the Kate Moss collection of lipstick as they are great quality and have a wide range of colours.
Collection has to be one of my top 3 highstreet brands. My most repurchased makeup item is the Lasting Perfection Concealer. I'm also a huge fan of their new Lip Butter Pencils and their nail varnishes are so reasonably priced. A good brand to go for if you're on a budget.
Another brand which reminds me of my teens. When I think of Bourjois products they all are good quality and don't feel heavy on your face. I've tried all their foundations which I really like, similarly with their concealer. The brand is great for fellow pale people too! The bronzing powder is next on my wishlist.

What are your go to beauty brands?

4 October 2014

Collection Big Fake Curves Mascara Review

 collection big fake curves mascara

collection big fake curves review
Wowsers, just look at the size of those balls. The new Big Fake Curves mascara from Collection has possibly the biggest balls I've ever seen on a mascara brush. Described as their 'biggest' ever mascara, Big Fake Curves promises to volumize lashes giving you that false lash effect.

The hourglass shaped wand took some getting us to, those with small eyes or short lashes might struggle with the size. Firstly I applied it by wiggling side to side from root to tip then going in for a second coat just using the tip of the brush. The mascara does definitely curl lashes and add volume. Although, I'm not sure how well it would work if you had really straight eyelashes. Delicately brushing just the tip on the bottom lashes creates that 60's inspired doll-eyed look which I love. I didn't get any clumping or flaking from this so overall not a bad, budget-friendly mascara.

COLLECTION Big Fake Curves Mascara* £4.99 from Boots and Superdug. Available in Ultra Black and Ultra Black Waterproof. 

3 October 2014

Jivesse Marine Collagen Cream Review

jivesse marine collagen cream review
I've read you should start using anti-ageing products in your twenties; as I turned the big 2-0 this year I thought it would be a good excuse to test out a few new products. The latest skincare item I'm trialing is the Jivessa Marine Collagen cream. It's an hydrating anti-ageing cream created to stimulate natural collage growth using Peptan Marin Collagen peptideas. Combined with key natural actives such as kakadu plum and acetyle hexapeptide-8 (the cosmetic alternative to botox), the product works to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, improve elasticity and moisture while counteracting the signs of ageing.

The packaging is pretty cool. The cream is preserved in an airless jar which is dispensed by pressing down the top. One pump is enough for a full application. I love the luxurious gold and turquoise packaging this is housed in. The formula of the cream is quite heavy and takes around ten minutes to soak in. I've been applying it morning and evening to my face neck for a couple of weeks now. They do recommend using this for at least 8 weeks to see a difference but I've already noticed my makeup goes on better and my skin looks plumper. As I don't have any wrinkles yet I can't comment on whether it improves the appearance however my skin texture is smoother and feels softer. The cream also contains skin-loving ingredients such as raspberry which acts as natural protection from harmful UVA sunlight to help keep the skin looking youthful. As well as this, Avocado Oil helps to promote cell renewal and regeneration.

This is a lovely, hydrating face cream but because of the price and anti-ageing properties I'd recommend this for women aged 35 and over.

Jivesse Marine Collagen Cream* £80 available from Harrods and online here.

1 October 2014

Battle Of The Face Wipes

best face wipes
I know using face wipes to clean your skin with is breaking beauty blogger rule #19. Face wipes are ok, sometimes. I wouldn't use them everyday and they aren't an alternative for cleansing your skin. Face wipes are good for festivals, taking off stubborn makeup before cleansing and at 3am in the morning. Plus, I find it secretly satisfying to see all my makeup come off onto the white wipes.

Best Natural Option: Burts Bees Cleansing Towlettes £5.99
Infused with White Tea Extract, Aloe Leaf Juice and Cucumber Extract these wipes are made to cleanse and calm your skin naturally. These are nice to use even if you haven't been wearing makeup as they are designed to get rid of oil & dirt too. The plastic lid helps stop the wipes from drying out. It's worth noting these have a White Tea scent to them, I don't particularly mind the smell but Burt's Bees also have a sensitive version if you do.

Best Budget Buy: Nivea Daily Essentials Refreshing Cleansing Wipes £2.99
These gentle, alcohol free wipes are great for those with sensitive skin. Although not the best for removing waterproof makeup, my skin is left feeling clean and refreshed after use. I like to take these away with me if I'm camping as they help to wake me up in the morning. There is no dryness and I love how affordable the Nivea wipes are.

Best At Removing Waterproof Makeup: No7 Facial Wipes £7.00
These are my go-to wipes for removing stubborn eye makeup, I couldn't tell you how many times I've re-purchased these. Sometimes, if I've worn heavy makeup i'll use one of these to take it off before properly cleansing. They are hypo-allergenic so great for sensitive skin gals. The only downside to these wipes is that they aren't cheap. I do try to stock up on them when the £5 off vouchers are out. 

Best Cleansing Wipes: Manuka Doctor ApiClear 3in1 Purifying Facial wipes £3.49
A cleanser, toner and moisturiser all in one simple swipe! These contain anti-bacterial Manuka Oil which helps to soothe and balance skin. Great if you're in a rush or feel bad about using face wipes on your skin. The wipes do feel a little astringent in a non-drying, pleasant way. Maybe too harsh if you suffer from sensitive skin though. 

Don't hate me, I sometimes use face wipes. #sorrynotsorry
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