Saturday, 31 January 2015

Earrings from Trish's Treasures

Boxed earrings from Trish's Treasures

Earrings from Trish's Treasures

Me wearing moon and star earrings from Trish's treasures

I forget how I found her Facebook page, but a while ago I 'liked' Trish's Treasures, and for a while now I've been drooling over different pieces of jewellery she shares on there and sells.  Something you may not know about me is that I LOVE Sun, Moon, Stars print, jewellery - anything to do with that basically - so when I saw these moon and star earrings crop up on my Facebook feed the other day, I just *had* to treat myself.  

The ear wires are plated with sterling silver, and the moon and star are antiqued silver.  I love that the stars dangle and sway (they make a really nice sound too) :)  They came in a little pinky giftbox just 2-3 days after I ordered them, so great speed with the delivery.  They were also only £12 (with free delivery), which I think is a great price - I absolutely love these, even the hubby loved them.

They've got a great selection of jewellery, some of which is really beautiful, and none of it is super expensive, it's all pretty affordable, without being 'cheap'.  They also have a nice weight to them, not too heavy and not too light.

If you want to have a browse of her jewellery, have a look at her site here - I think you'll be very pleasantly surprised. :)

Friday, 30 January 2015

14 things no one tells you when you start a beauty blog

14 things no one tells you about starting a beauty blog

Inspired after a conversation with the lovely Gemma from Miss Makeup Magpie the other night, I thought I'd write a bit of a tongue-in-cheek post about the things no one tells you when you start a beauty blog - it's all true, but somewhat silly :)

1.  You WILL get bombarded with emails to try the fecking Younique 3D mascara... OMG leave me alone!
2.  You WILL get loads of emails from 'SEO's' telling me I rank badly for important terms - get lost, can't you see I'm a lowly blog and not a big corporate website!
3.  So many brands will email you, offering 'FREE' content that will improve your blog, all they need is a link, but don't worry, there's no budget for this, we just want you to spend an hour editing it so it suits the tone of your readers and your blog, include the links we specify on a topic that doesn't relate to your blog, k?
4.  You'll try to justify spending £500 on a DSLR and semi-professional photography set up to take slightly clearer blog pictures of lipsticks... yeah. I did that.
5.  Your obsession with makeup will spiral out of control into a full blown addiction 
6.  You'll accumulate a makeup collection that'll put some makeup artists to shame
7.  How the fear of missing out never goes away, you always NEED the latest thing! (CSI blog)
8.  How you'll never be able to leave Boots empty handed (Miss Makeup Magpie)
9.  You can't touch any new products until you photograph them, no matter how hard you try (Miss Makeup Magpie)
10.  It's sooo obsessive (Frazzled Beauty)
11.  3 for 2 means 9 for 12 in Boots etc :) (Beauty Queen UK)
12. Yes you do need all those eye shadow palettes, lipsticks, foundations, powders, blushers, bronzers, brushes, concealers, face primers, eye primers, brow kits, mascaras, eye liners etc
13.  You'll curse the winter months for poor lighting to take blog photo's in
14.  You'll NEED your own room just to store you're out-of-control makeup collection, and then only use 10% of it

If you  have any more to add, please leave them as a comment below :)


Thursday, 29 January 2015

Makeup Meme's

It's a post just for fun today, no review, nothing sponsored etc, just something to make us giggle - I was having a search on the net the other night and found loads of funny makeup meme's, so I thought I'd save some of them and put them in a post for you to have a chuckle at :)



Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Discover new brand with Beauty Crowd

Beauty Crowd logo
First off - the designer in me LOVES this logo, it's so clean and crisp, and love the colour :)  Beauty Crowd recently had a pop up shop here in Cardiff above the Elf store, where they were selling products like the ones below - they're championing discovering new fantastic and unique brands that you might not have heard of before.  So without further ado, here's some of the great products you can buy there.

Flint & Flint
I love the packaging on these, the coloured + signs cut into the packaging is a really nice touch, and their logo is lovely too - all very classy.  There's two products here, their Everyday Wash £27*, and their Eye Hero £37*.  The Everyday Wash contains Glycolic acid (2%), Moringa Oil and Vital ET (form of vitamin E) - combined they help to protect your skin from the sun's harmful rays and help to cleanse and clean the skin.  A really lovely product, one I've been using with my Soniclear.  Then we have the Eye Hero - it's a treatment that you dab around the eye area, it contains eyeseryl, beautifeye and Gransil DMCM-5 - all very strange sounding stuff, but the eyeseryl helps to reduce puffyness around eyes, the beautifeye works by working to reduce wrinkles, dark circles and bags by lifting the upper eyelids, and finally the Gransil DMCM-5 helps to blur wrinkles.  It's soft, refreshing on the eye and helps to hydrate - I found that it really did help to reduce puffyness (wish I'd taken before and after pics here!) and keep the area hydrated - it really felt like a good quality product.

Teen-skin actives
 A little more 'affordable' than the Flint & Flint - this is aimed at troubled skin - I haven't had the best opportunity for trialing these recently as my skin has been in really good condition - so I can't comment on the Spot Clearing Gel £6.99 - however, what I can tell you is that it's an on-spot treatment and has lots of good natural ingredients in it like ether oils, lavender and lemongrass.  Then we come to the Restoring Skin Mask £9.99 - this you leave on for 15 mins, it works by absorbing excess oil that causes blackheads and spots, so is great to use as a preventative measure.  I used this a few times and had lovely soft skin afterwards, and it didn't break me out - which I was expecting given the type of product it is :)
Flint & Flint skincare, and Teen-skin actives

Lola's Apothecary
** For a limited time Beauty Crowd are doing a free 10ml roller ball (the one pictured below) of this product when you buy a full size (100 ml - £32) one **
This is their Rose & Neroli body oil, complete with an actual rose inside the bottle, how fab!? Neroli is really the wonderful ingredient in here, when used it can help to reduce thread veins, improve the elasticity of the skin, and encourage cell renewal - all good stuff.  I used this after a bath, and it not only left my skin smelling really lovely and luxurious, but incredibly soft - I really do love using a body oil as opposed to a lotion after a bath as I find it makes my skin much softer and hydrates more effectively.  A really lovely product, and so beautiful. 
Lola's Apothacary

Latherly Shower Experience
Now Latherly is a different kind of product - it's a shower gel in it's true form - it sprays out as a thick gel, but in a can so you expect a mousse, strange!  It's made for men and women, so a unisex product, although, I will say that for me, the scent was more geared towards men than women - however on discussion with the hubby, he thinks the opposite.  I used this a couple of times, but told the hubby to use it, and he's loved it!  What I really like this is that it's made from organic rice milk (how cool!?), and it's free from parabens, alcohol, artificial colours and soap.  It costs £4.99, so not expensive, but slightly more than your average supermarket shower gel.
Latherly shower gel

LAY/N/GO Cosmo
This is a pretty nifty take on a makeup bag or wash bag, or jewellery bag, or anything bag :)  The LAY/N/GO cosmo £20* is perfect for travelling you can put anything you like in there - it lays flat as a circle and the drawstring does up tight, turning it into a neat bag.  There's a special lip around the edge which stops things rolling off, so perfect for makeup (think lipsticks, glosses, eye liners etc).  It's also water repellant, and easy to wash and dry - a great alternative to your typical makeup bag (that's what I used it for) as when you open it, everything is accessible and on display, so you don't have to go rooting through your bag to look for different bits and bobs.

LAY/N/GO cosmo

I've loved discovering some brands I'd never heard of, and some truly lovely products, even down to the LAY/N/GO makeup bag.  If my nails were longer and worth painting, I'd be eyeing up their 'Del Sol' nail polish collection - some gorgeous colours perfect for spring (check them out here). If you'd like to discover some new products, you can visit their site here.
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*Post contains PR samples

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Makeup Revolution I ♥ Makeup | Lip L Lip Lava

Makeup Revolution I ♥ Makeup Lip Lava

Lip Lava product range

Lip Lava swatches
The latest product to hit the ground running from Makeup Revolution (aside from the storm their makeup brushes seem to be causing) are their I ♥ Makeup Lip Lavas.  Pitched as a liquid lipstick, they're available in the five different shades pictured and for the bargain price of £2.99 each and with added vitamin e to help kip your lips soft and hydrated.

Of the five shades available there's a red, a nude, a coral, a purple and a pinky nude - all the shades have fantastic pigmentation, they come in a squeezy tube with a felt-type applicator where the product comes out of a hole in the middle (no idea what that type of applicator is called sorry!).

They applied beautifully (I used a lip brush) and lasted a really long time (approximately 4-6 hours before needing to reapply) .  You also get a decent 12ml of product, so lots of bang for your buck!

As I've mentioned before with Makeup Revolution, the only improvement I'd like to see is the name of the shade printed on the actual product, not just the packaging :)  Other than that, I think these lip lava's are really fantastic, they're great quality, hydrating, long lasting with great colour-payoff, and for only £2.99 - you can't really ask for more.

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*Post contains PR samples

Monday, 26 January 2015

Best products of 2014

It's a little overdue, I was hoping to have this post wrapped up by early Jan, but better late than never! So without further ado, here's my top products of 2014 (not necessarily products released in 2014, just my most used and favourite products).

Foundations of 2014
Makeup Forever HD foundation
When I was rounding up images and posts for this, I realised I'd never actually written a full review of this, so there will be one in coming weeks, but for now we'll just have a quick summary - MUF HD foundation has a fantastic coverage (akin to Estee Lauder Double Wear) but without being too heavy.  It has a lovely matte finish and is very long wearing - a new discovery for me in 2014.

Bourjois Radiance Reveal Healthy Mix foundation
This really is a stunning foundation - it makes skin look flawless and slightly dewey, such a great dupe for the NARS sheer glow - a foundation I will definitely re-purchase - I tend to alternate between this one and the MUF HD foundation (when I'm not trying a new one). [review here]

Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet foundation
This was probably overall my favourite foundation of the year, it was a birthday treat to myself back in April and I just loved it - perfect for oily skin, it sits beautifully and gives a really velvety finish, just as the name suggests, it really is a luxury foundation. [review here]

Eye liners of 2014
Collection Fast Stroke Liner
I have a bit of a love hate relationship with this, it has the most beautiful finish, it's jet black and very matte - it doesn't budge, transfer or flake, but the applicator leaves a lot to be desired - it's rigid and tends to get all over your lashes, if the applicator was different, this would probably be my all time favourite as the formula is so good - but it's cheap as chips which helps. [review here]

Dolly Wink eyeliner
This is a really lovely liner, it's in the form of a pen, with fine bristles meaning you can create a really fine point when creating your flick, again it doesn't budge either - something that's a must when you have oily lids that are very hooded. [review here]

Bourjois Liner Pinceau
This was a recommendation from Sandara who blogs over at The Black Pearl Blog - it's her all time favourite so I thought I'd give it a go.  In fairness, she's right, it's fab, it stays put, easy to use and has a lovely finish.  Looking at the list above, it's nice to see that this year, all my favourites are from the high street, all affordable :) [review here]

Blushers of 2014
New CID i-glow blusher
A recent favourite of mine as I only discovered it in the last quarter of the year, but this blusher really is gorgeous.  It's almost like a pink highlighter too, really beautiful.  You get a lot of product for your money too as it's a very generous size - this really does look stunning on the cheeks, especially if you have a very matte foundation on. [review here]

NARS blusher in Dolce Vita
I really am a sucker when it comes to berry toned blushers, especially if they're matte.  Sadly, sometime earlier in the year I lost my NARS Orgasm blusher, I would have thought it would have turned up by now, it must be lost with my MAC creme cup lipstick... anyway, I digress! This blusher is beautifully pigmented and in the usual lovely NARS packaging. [review here]

Sephora blusher in Healthy Rose
Another great matte blusher, and such a pretty colour.  I picked this up when I was in France at the beginning of 2014 for my brother's funeral and it was probably my most used blusher of 2014, it's perfect for really pale skin too as it's not too over the top. [review here]

Eye shadow palettes of 2014
Makeup Revolution Romantic Smoked palette
Holy moly did I have a hard time picking just 3 palettes!  I ended up deciding on these 3 based on their swatches.  The romantic smoked palette was so gorgeous, you should see the swatches (linked at the end of this paragraph) - the formulation is fantastic and the colours, just stunning, one of many Makeup Revolution palettes I've loved over the last year. [review here]

Makeup Revolution Disappear til dawn palette
This was the first palette from Makeup Revolution that I used and I fell in love with it so quickly. I love how it's so good for travelling as it's very petite and compact - and as always, pigmentation and formula are fantastic.  You have to love the price point of Makeup Revolution, each palette just a few ££s. [review here]

Urban Decay Vice 2 palette
Now I couldn't have Makeup Revolution stealing all the spotlight.  I had this for Christmas in 2013 and absolutely loved it - it's the quality you've come to love and expect from Urban Decay with a great variety of colour, textures and finishes, all wrapped in a gorgeous purple case. [review here]

Best mascaras of 2014
Bourjois 1 Seconde mascara
This really is a fantastic mascara, I have both the waterproof and non-waterproof versions - it gives fantastic long, volume-filled lashes making them look amazing, please have a look at my review to see the pics of my lashes and you'll see for yourself [review here]

Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill mascara
This was the first piece of makeup from Giorgio Armani that I'd used and I absolutely loved it, my lashes looked amazing with it, I'm just sad that it's run out as it's probably my favourite high end mascara, definitely worth the money. [review here]

Makeup Revolution Viper mascara
I know I technically reviewed this in 2015, but I was using it for the last couple of months of 2104. It's a fab high street value mascara - yeah it's not necessarily going to 'wow' you, I think for £3 you'll be hard pressed to find a mascara that will wow you, but this is really good value for money, giving lovely lashes as a result. [review here]

Makeup Revolution picks

Makeup Revolution picks
I couldn't complete this review without giving special mention to Makeup Revolution - for me, they really have been the brand of the year.  They started up and really hit the ground running with a fabulous collection of high quality and very affordable makeup.  They really do have a lot to shout about - I've yet to try one of their products that I don't like.  I can't wait to see what they do in 2015!

So there you have it, my favourite products from 2014 - I haven't delved into powders, primers, and brow products as I didn't use much of a variety over the year, I pretty much stuck with Japonesque for powder, Benefit for brows and haven't been using a primer.

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Karla brushes

Karla Brushes - Dream Together

Karla Brushes

Karla Brushes up close

Applying lipstick with Karla Brushes

First time applying lipstick with Karla Brushes, Lipstick is a Sephora red

Lipstick applied with Karla Brushes, Lipstick is a Bourjois Rouge Edition

Appling Eurydice by Illamasqua with Karla Brushes

lipstick applied with Karla Brushes - Lipstick is Eurydice by Illamasqua

A bit of a caveat on this post - I'm by no means a makeup artist and I know that my application of lipstick using brushes isn't perfect, but hey, I'm not a professional ;)

I think it's fair to say a lot, if not most, bloggers know who Karla Powell is - she's a very well established and accomplished makeup artist who creates fantastic creative looks for people like Magnum or Polo mints etc as well as a lot of really creative lip art.  If you haven't yet, do check out her Instagram, she posts a lot of looks there, as well as more recently, pictures of her new baby, aww.

Anyway, that's a bit of background to the artist, well, being the fabulous makeup artist that she is, and working specifically on a lot of lip art, she's brought our her own collection of lip brushes after the success of her face charts.

The brushes are all synthetic (taklon), cruelty free and vegan.  In the collection there are 3 different brushes for 3 different purposes.  

There's the KL1 (The Filling brush) this is probably my favourite of the three, it's the one I used in the dusky pink lipstick above (3 pics up), it's softer and more flexible than the other two, and create for creating a really fine line around the edge to line the lip, although it's strength as a brush is in filling the lips. 

The KL2 (The Precision brush) this is angled like the KL3, but not quite as firm.  This is great for lining the lips very precisely.  I *think* this is the brush I used on the bright pink lipstick above (lipstick is Eurydice by Illamasqua).

The KL3 (The Cupid's bow brush) designed to line the cupid's bow of the lip, precisely and without the lipstick bleeding.  This, if my memory serves me correctly, is the firmer of the brushes.  I *think* this is the one I used to create the red lips (bad blogger, I should have taken note!).

For me as a non-makeup artist, using different makeup brushes on different parts of the lip is something I need practise on, typically I'll pick a brush and use just that one for that purpose.  But with these 3 I can really see after using them, how they each play their own part, especially with their different pressures, flexibility, shapes and thickness.

I don't have a lot to compare them to, my only other lip brush is a cheapie Models Own one which I've had for years, and while it's not much to compare to, these are most definitely much better - I like their firmness, it helps to give me control to create a better line, something I always struggled with when using the Models Own one.  You certainly don't need to be an MUA to use these either, they're suitable for anyone who applies lipstick.  I've never really been a fan of applying directly from the bullet either, I always tend to go for a brush, I find that lipstick looks better when applied that way, and stays in place a lot longer too, and doesn't start looking patchy quickly.

You can pick up this set for £15 from Beauty Chamber.
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