Sunday, 31 May 2015

Post Holiday: The makeup I actually used during my week away.

Holiday Makeup 2

Keeping on the holiday track, I wanted to do a post on not only the makeup I took, but the makeup I actually used. I know they sound similar, but they weren't. I took foundation... which I didn't use, five lipsticks, which again I didn't use and pressed powder... yeah, didn't use that either. What's pictured are products that I used and couldn't do without, as although I didn't wear much makeup in the day, I wanted to look a bit glamorous for the evening - which although no one really dressed up for, I felt rather lovely. Always better to be overdressed than under, I believe. But let's get back to the makeup. It's a mixture of high end and complete bargains that I can't be without, such as the Makeup Revolution palettes, which cover basically any eye look that I wanted to achieve. For £4 each, the palettes covered all manners of shimmer and mattes, making them not only inexpensive choices for holidays but ones that can create any look; I chose Essential Mattes (here) and Iconic 3 (here) as they were the perfect mix of cool and warm tones, so depending on my mood and my tan, I could do a soft smokey eye or just stick with something matte and simple for the evening. The combinations are endless. Another offering from Makeup Revolution is their Goddess of Love highlighter (here) which is a gorgeous champagne colour, and it gives the most gorgeous glow - perfect for a holiday, as it gives a 'glowing from within' look especially when dusted over bare arms and legs. Trust me on this. A big, fluffy powder brush and this highlighter will leave all of you glowing.

Although I was on holiday, I still needed a bit of concealer just to make me look more alive and lovely whilst I tanned, and two products that are amazing for that are Rimmel's Wake Me Up Concealer (£5.49, here) and Maybelline's Eraser Eye Concealer (£7.99, here), both of which are so good at concealing dark circles, yet highlighting all the good bits, so you skin look awake and glowy. I didn't see the need for foundation, since I'd be tanning (safely of course) and all of my foundation is made for me at my palest - so mixing concealer, highlighter and a contour with my tanning skin seemed like the best look for me. Speaking of contour, I took two products, a powder and a cream just so I could cover all the bases; Illamasqua's Cream Pigment in Hollow (£17.50, here) and Sleek's Contour Kit in Light (£6.49, here) represent only only either ends of the spectrum in terms of price, but also cream vs powder, which I would used depending on my mood and how much definition I wanted for my cheekbones. I think I'll do a little post on both of these, so I can go into more depth, so keep your eyes out for that one. Two more products before I focus on the eye/brow area, and they are Clinique's Cheek Pop in Peach Pop (£16.50, here) which is my go-to blusher right now, as the colour is leaves is just divine! As well as a little sample of Benefit's Porefessional Primer (Full size £24.50, here) which is a lovely primer to set makeup for the day/evening, and not have it run all off your face in the heat.

Another Benefit product that I took, and am completely obsessed with is their Gimme Brow Gel (£18.50, here) which brushes and sets my brows, making them look not only brushed to perfection but I know that they're not going to be looking errant throughout my day of haggling for bargains at the Turkish Bazaar. A well tamed brow sets my day up very nicely. One other brow products that I am obsessed with at the moment, is Anastasia Beverly Hills' Dipbrow Pomade in Medium Brown (£15, here) which I apply with a slanted eyeliner brush (the one from Real Techniques is good for that) and it leaves me looking fierce all day. I'm a big brow fan, so knowing they're under control makes me feel awesome. And lastly, two High Street additions to round out my Holiday makeup and they're from Revlon and Maxfactor. Revlon's Grow Luscious Mascara in Waterproof Black (£9.99, here) is something that I swear by to hold the curl in my lashes, as well as not to run down my face when I go swimming. And you know what, it didn't run. Not when I swam in the sea, or the pool; I count that as quite a success! From Maxfactor is the only cream eyeshadow I took with me, their Excess Shimmer Eyeshadow in Copper (£7.99, here), which blends and lasts like a dream. It opens up the eye and looks like a more champagne esc colour to me, than copper, but I suppose the colour would build up if you applied a few layers. I simply apply it like a luminous base, and then blend a darker colour into the crease and lash line. It's a winner by me.

What makeup essentials do you take on holiday with you? Any products that you take and don't use? Let me know.

Holiday Makeup 3


Thursday, 28 May 2015

Post Holiday: Duty Free Makeup with Clinique and Estee Lauder

Duty Free makeup 1

Annnnnd I'm back from my holiday! *simultaneously cheers and cries* It was wonderful! But I'm sure you'll figure that out for yourself once I post all my holiday pictures... prepare to want to go to this hotel. Seriously, it is gooooorgeous. But hey, y'know what always makes me feel better after coming back from a Holiday? Obviously, the duty free. Ahhhh, duty free. The place where you buy things and feel no guilt... or is that just me? After going through security and waiting for my flight out of Dalaman Airport, what's there to do but have a good ol' nose in the duty free? And my goodness it was worth it. Chanel, Guerlain, Estee Lauder, OPI, Clinique, Dior - this airport had it all, and believe me, I had to restrain myself. I could have easily spent a small fortune, which would make my bargain holiday a bit less of a steal... But hey, let's talk about the goodies I bought. Bring on the Clinique and Estee Lauder! 

Duty Free makeup Clinique 2

Two lip products, an eyeshadow stick, a mascara and a bronzer. Quite a haul if I do say so myself. I know what you're thinking though. 'What colour is that amazing Clinique Lip Pop?!' and yes, it is Melon Pop. I think it's the most lusted after colour... something I wasn't aware of when I actually bought it, but hey, good taste ;) In my local airport (Cardiff) I started off my Clinique shopping with two Chubby Sticks, one for lips from the Intense range in Chunkiest Chilli (£17, here) and one for eyes in Bountiful Beige (£17, here). These were two products I used throughout my holiday, and it was basically my lipstick of choice for the evening meals as well as just chilling out by the pool. A sheer red is perfect for all occasions, especially when it glides on as well as this Clinique Chubby Stick does. I love how easy it is to just slick on, as it moisturises and gives such an intense pop of colour. For my second duty free purchase, I really fancied the look of the Chubby Sticks for eyes and as there were so many colours, I thought I would start with the colour that I would get most use out of, and it's the palest, most neutral shade. A soft beige, champagne colour that I love applied all over the eyelid, as well as in the corner of the eye, as I find it opens up the whole eye, making everything look so much brighter and awake. Something I definitely need. Not only are they so simple to apply because of their formula, their packaging, as chubby sticks makes touchups so hassle free, which for holiday makeup, is everything I never knew I needed.

Now, at Dalaman airport, Clinique jumped out at me again! And it's their newest release, their Lip Pops; after some careful swatching and talking to the makeup counter ladies, I sussed out that Melon Pop was the colour for me. Bright, but not too bright with a formula that screamed 'I am going to be amazing', it quickly made its way into my basket. Not only is the packaging so minimal and gorgeous, but the way it applies makes me think that this isn't going to be the only Lip Pop (£17, here) in my collection, as I do have my eye on a few reds for when long Summer nights call for a moisturising red lip. (As for the swatches below, the order are actually inverted - so the lip pop first, and then the intense chubby stick is last)

Duty Free makeup Clinique 4

Duty Free makeup Clinique Swatches 5

Duty Free makeup Estee Lauder 3

Yes, that's right. A bronzer. Me, with a bronzer! Well, with a slight tan on my skin, or a nice golden glow as I like to think of it, I felt like a little bronzer on my face would keep that sunkissed look for as long as possible; and to be honest, I do love the look. A little bit of colour not only makes me look more alive and awake, but healthy as well, with my dark circles looking a bit more hidden under my bronze glow. I got the lightest shade (01 Light) but still find that Estee Lauder's Bronze Goddess Bronzer (£32, here) needs to be blended to avoid tide marks and make it look more natural. Maybe in the Summertime, once everything is more tanned, then it wouldn't look as harsh unblended. It has a soft golden shimmer to it, that looks so illuminating on the skin that I can go without highlighter and instead bask in the glow that it gives me. It lasts all day, so for me, keeping up a healthy, tanned look when I'm usually so pale, is super simple and easy to achieve - perfect for lazy girl tanning. Lastly, is Estee Lauder's Sumptuous Waterproof Mascara in Black (£21, here) and this was more of a 'Hey, I need a new mascara, let's try this one' and it really doesn't budge. Not smudging or panda eyes for me, especially with my oily skin, this is wonderful to keep on all day. It separates lashes so well, and gives a lovely curl, that although doesn't last all day, it still makes me look awake and my lashes looking fab. 

I'm going to do more in-depth reviews on these fabulous products, so if you'd like to see anything first, let me know! And I'm trying out a new size of photography images on here, what do you think? Too big? What are your favourite products to buy in duty free? 

Duty Free makeup Estee Lauder 6

Duty Free makeup Estee Lauder Swatch 7

Saturday, 9 May 2015

Boots Makeup and Skincare Haul, with swatches.

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 1

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 2

So here I am! After a few days off, trying to make sure everything is ready for my holiday (it kind of is..) I've returned to blogging, maybe a bit of procrastination is going on... but what's an event without it? Anyway, look forward to posts about packing and what I'll be taking with me, as well as my carry on bag and makeup/skincare choices. It's very exciting, and I hope it'll help all you fab people and your future trips. The biggest issue I'm having with packing, is that because I have um, big boobs, trying to fit all my bras/bra bikini tops into my suitcase without them taking up too much room. It's a task, but I'll be talking about that in an upcoming post as well. Packing bras etc that is, not about boobs. Maybe that's a bit too TMI? 

For my first post back, I thought I'd do a little post about a little haul that I did a few weeks ago because it was a good one. Mostly makeup, but that's never a bad thing is it? Boots for me, is the place for the ultimate haul - skincare, haircare, makeup etc, it's a place of solace and extravagance - I don't think there's anything better than having a wander around my local Boots with money to spend and a few ideas in mind (as well as some new releases out). So let's get to it, and firstly we have one of my favourite nail polish brands, and that's Sally Hansen. For £6.99 the Complete Salon Manicure range is an absolute steal, considering the quality and brush (which is thick and covers the nail in two swipes); not only are the colours amazingly diverse, but they last sooooo long with a good topcoat - I'm talking a week long manicure that dries in no time! The colour below is Teesta Turquoise (here) and I thought it was the perfect colour for a holiday manicure, so you can bet my nails are going to be as blue as the sea which I intend to swim in everyday (woo for the Med!). Keep you eyes open for some sunny Instagram shots featuring these nails and maybe a cocktail... or two. 

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 3

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 4

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 5
Something I've always wanted and really never purchased, were these slides - I had an passion a few years ago, with the idea of pin-curling my hair and these clips, were what was recommended after hours and hours of watching Youtube videos of 1940's curled hair. It was the birth of what I imagine to be a lifelong obsession. They're by Babyliss and much like all of their hair tools, are wonderful quality - although I haven't quite gotten around to pin-curling my hair just yet (this is what the end product is like, and this is the before), they're wonderful for sectioning hair, as well as creating a marcel wave in the front of the hair (this is a looser version). There are some really wonderful tutorials out there for pin-curling, if you're interested in that kind of retro look; I find it to be very timeless, and can be worn by women of all ages - and we all know some men love a good marcel wave in the front of their hair (see Tom Hiddleston in Midnight In Paris as F. Scott Fitzgerald). It's quite a 20's thing to do, but it's very often recreated as it's such a classic look. 

Now this lipstick, oh my gosh this lipstick, is from L'Oreal and part of their Colour Riche Matte range, in the colour Érotique which is the most gorgeous flushed nude rose pink, it's the kind of colour that matches my natural lip colour almost to a tee, and I love that. It has that classic lipstick scent, i.e. the smell that the lipsticks my grandmother had, but that just makes me feel like it's a vintage lipstick, and on a fancy dressing table, this wouldn't look at all out of place. For a matte lipstick, it's surprisingly moisturising and doesn't drag at all on the lip, which does happen with some other matte lipsticks. It keeps lips hydrated without budging that much, and aside from some wear on the inside of the lips, it has good staying power. I would reapply a touch after eating, but this is otherwise good to go for a solid four hours or so on my lips. Check out the swatch below to see how it looks (actually applies slightly more red on skin, whereas it's a bit more mauve on the lips). I can't seem to find it on the website, but it's in store - definitely worth a swatch. 

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 6

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 7

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 8

Another L'Oreal product that's been raved about is their Infallible 24hr Matte Foundation which at £6.99 (here) is such a steal, I didn't turn to anything else for days - It's my go to foundation for a fuller, matte coverage - makes me think that it should have been a Winter/Spring release, as in Summer I tend to use a lighter coverage i.e. concealer and highlighting powders rather than a full face of foundation. Nevertheless, this foundation is wonderful. It applies like a dream and is very easily blendable. The range of colours isn't spectacular, but as I'm so ridiculously pale right now, the lightest shade suits me quite well - I'm a little bit curious what shade I would be with a tan, but I suppose I'll have to deal with it when it happens. Let's not assume I'm going to have a holiday tan just yet, I'll end up jinxing myself. To complete the look, I happened upon Rimmel's Wake me up Concealer (£5.49, here) which I'd heard tons about, as it's meant to brighten and... well, y'know, make you look awake/alive. It really, really does. It brightens up my dark circles and makes the skin look so glowy, it's my go-to for a no foundation look, as well as with my two other concealers (gotta have three to cover my dark shadows) - it's replaced the above mentioned foundation for a natural but pretty much flawless look. I am so impressed, I cannot tell you. 

Zipping over to skincare, this was a little purchase to throw in my handbag when I go holiday/over my boyfriends/to Silverstone to watch the F1 in July - as I don't plan to just use it on my face, as I'll be using my regular cleansing methods, but this is just for ease of convenience. If my skin is feeling dry on a plane, then I'll take my makeup off, spritz a little with a refreshing mist and then whack on some moisturiser so I don't look flakey and dehydrated. That's not a good look for me. They're also really handy for getting off the majority of eye makeup before going in for a proper cleanse. They're currently £1.74 here.

And back to makeup again! Wasn't that a fun detour? In the shade Copper, this Excess Shimmer Eyeshadow from Maxfactor is a total Amy from A little Boat Sailing induced purchase... as it looked good, and by damn I wanted it! It is so shimmery (obvs, right?) and gorgeous on the lids that it really opens the eyes up, making them look so bright and adding to the whole wide awake look that I'm so fond of. Plus it's super light and creamy, as well as the fact that it doesn't budge all day - it's a total win-win. Combined with a darker colour through the crease, this is a perfect neutral smokey eye with that kind of shimmer to make your eyes really pop. At £7.99 (here) it reminds me of a MAC paint pot,   but creamier in a more whipped sense, if you get me. 

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 9

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 10

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 11
Another offering from the amazing Maxfactor is one of their Creme Puff Blushes, £8.99 (here) which have widely been suggested as dupes for the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes - which I am all for, as I don't know whether its in me to pay that much for a blush. Maybe one day (dreamy sigh). It goes on light and soft, making it really builable as well as combining it with a creamy blush on the apples on the cheeks. It's one of those types of blushes that I loved the look of, but I think it's gonna take some experimenting to really love this nude/mauve esc colour. Perhaps something a bit more pink would have been a wiser choice. 

Lastly, aside from the swatches, we have what I can only describe as the concealer that covers everything, and it's Rimmel's Lasting Finish Concealer (£5.49, here). It is the concealer of dark circles, blemishes and general redness making it a total holy grail product for me. Rimmel are really impressing me with their concealers and I cannot recommend them enough. This beauty will have its own little post, but I must say, if you suffer with dark circles, give this pot a go. It's creamy and reminds me of Benefit's Boi-ing Concealer, which I think is three times as expensive.

Swatches below, from left top to bottom right: Maxfactor Creme Blush, Maxfactor Excess Shimmer Eyeshadow, L'Oreal Colour Riche Matte lipstick, Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer, L'Oreal Infallible Foundation and Rimmel Lasting Finish Concealer. 

Boots Skincare and Makeup Haul 12

Friday, 1 May 2015

£15 and under: Zoeva 103 Defined Buffer Foundation Brush and 227 Soft Definer Vegan Eyeshadow Brush

Zoeva Foundation and Eyeshadow Brush

Just a quick little post to mention two makeup brushes that are rocking my world right now, and they're both from the amazing Zoeva, which I purchased from BeautyBay (here) as they do a massive range of makeup, skincare and accessories; I happened to buy the foundation brush when I had a discount code, but these brushes are so inexpensive that a discount code isn't really needed if you want to buy a few to test them out (and I so think that you should). Not only are they amazing quality,  but they blend makeup so seamlessly - basically everything you'd want from a brand of makeup brushes. Zoeva are a relatively new brand to me, but I'd heard a lot about them through the blogger grapevine, so finally getting the guts to order one was a great moment for me.

My first brush was the 227 Vegan Soft Definer Eyeshadow Brush (£6.95, here) and I was so delighted to find that it was as soft and lovely as I had hoped; not only that, but it blends like a dream regardless of whether the eyeshadow is powder of cream, so for me, it's an essential brush for either applying shadow or blending out to create a soft, dreamy look. It's all about the blending, I tell ya. There were numerous brushes for eyeshadow, but this was the one that stood out the most, I think because it reminds me of the shape of a Mac 217, which sells for £19 - so, one Mac brush, or two/three brushes that look exactly like it but are by a lesser known brand? I know the Mac bristles are slightly denser and a little bit stiffer, but this in terms of colour payoff as well as the fluffy, vegan bristles makes the Zoeva 227 a much better and more affordable option for me, as well as others who don't have the heart, or the courage to spend £19 on an eyeshadow brush. 

And then there was the brush that would go on to replace my love of the Real Techniques brushes, and that's the 103 Defined Buffer Brush (£11.50, here) which just blends foundation so well, especially in the inner corners of the eyes which for me are very dark due to the blue/purple circles I get. It gives a very natural finish to the skin, not only with a lighter coverage foundation but even with a more full on coverage it still makes the skin look like skin, not like a mask. I think some brushes can make foundation look quite harsh, and even possibly leave lines on the face - but this blends so well, as I buff the foundation into skin using circular motions which not only blends but gives a much better coverage than doing it in lines. I also find that using circular motions increases the blood flow in my face, which causes a bit of glow and I'm all for a bit of glow, even through makeup - just means I get to apply less highlighter. Have you tried any Zoeva makeup brushes? Or do you have your eye on any of them? I cannot count how many brushes I feel like I need from them. 

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