30 August 2011

A Definite Ramble.

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As the title suggests this is 100% going to be a ramble post so you have been warned! Though it does include nice things like Autumn clothing as I've finally embraced the idea of wearing black tights again and boots!

So as you may or may not know if you follow me on Twitter... last night I spent four hours in A&E after being bitten on the hand by a dog, through a letterbox whilst delivering flyers for my fiances business (what-a-long-sentence!). But as dog bites tend to go I very lucky though it was painful at the time. I just need to take antibiotics for a week to prevent any infection from the dogs saliva, ergh! But it also means I'm currently having to type with one hand so this post is bound to take me three hours instead of one!

haul
Top row - Rocketdog Slush High Shearling Boots (Asos £28.00 from £50), Asos Stripe Perspex Double Bow Alice Band (£2.00), Therapy Pleated Skirt Black (House of Fraser £10.00 from £35) Bottom row - Oasis Oriental Soft Printed Jacket (House of Fraser £15 from £45), Therapy Ladder Stitch Cardigan (House of Fraser £10 from £35), Asos Temper Pleated Shoe Boots (£36.00).
However it has meant I've spent the day doing pretty much nothing other than reading my new book (The Carrie Diaries) and doing a bit of shopping online for some more weather appropriate clothing - see above!

Also prior to the dog/letterbox incident yesterday, I went to visit my dad and his new wife who have just come back from their honeymoon in Dubai and bought me a lovely Jimmy Choo Sky bag which is actually make me wish the leaves would start to fall already as the bag is just perfect for Autumn and I love the colour of the leather. 

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I've also been flicking through all the Autumn editorials today wondering what style of winter coat I should buy as I've worn my winter coat for 3 winters now and definitely need to treat myself to a new one when I visit the Trafford Centre next. 

What else, what else? Oh, I'm also in the process of making my blog/site look a bit nicer which is no easy task as I seem to develop brain ache as soon as I look at HTML. Though as you may have noticed I do have a new header which I've very proud of as it's more sharp and I do really like the font... so I think I'm going to use it as the column font as well. I'm also going to try to create a tab bar.. is that what it's called? For separate pages I'm going to add, like a Nail Swatch Gallery and an About Me section.

So hopefully normal posts will be back soon once I've got bored of doing nothing and also fingers crossed a more sleeker looking blog! 

Fee xx
 

29 August 2011

An Ode to Gold - 24K Gold Leaf Manicure for £3!

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Arghh no, not another nail post?!
Just a quick one today before I post up the tutorial for it in a few days as this is definitely one I want to share with you all. 

Now I'd say my 24 karat gold nails blend in quite well with the J'Adore bottle and the new ad which is very gold indeed, however the gold leaf for my manicure cost me exactly £3.00!

second pic

Which is amazingly cheap!! But if I considered how little I used , it actually cost me around 15p to create this manicure! Of course the gold leaf isn't actual real gold but definitely looks the part. I purchased around 10 small very thin sheets from Ebay - here is a similar listing.

I did attempt to put the gold leaf into a clear top coat a la Rococo's Gold Leaf Lacquer which is a pricey £25 - here! However the gold leaf turned green within an hour of being in the polish! So I placed the gold leaf on to my nails with a pair of tweezers... but I still think a tutorial would be fun even though it's super easy and very cheap! 

This really does look amazing on the nails and literally glows like real gold when it catches the light and just looks so professional. 

As for the ease of this manicure I would say it's just time you need with zero skill!


27 August 2011

Nail Polish Autumn 2011 Lookbook

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As I'm still getting use to my new camera and it's feeling rather chilly in the mornings at the moment I thought I'd create my own little nail polish lookbook of a few shades that would be perfect to wear this Autumn! 

I've tried to be a bit more creative and give them all an editorial/glossy feel! I'll also of course be showing swatches of all the polishes over the next few weeks...

Hope you like them!

jiojio

nhihio

ryyhth

jiojoi

hihui

hthtr

What is your favourite shade of nail polish to wear in Autumn/Fall? 

Mine has to be bronze metallic shades and statement reds!

Fee x

25 August 2011

Collective Haulin'

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Today I thought I would ease myself into blogging with my new camera with a simple haul... did I tell you I had a new camera? Well if you follow me on Twitter then I'm sure you will already know this as I have been rambling on about for the past few days! 

It's quite an upgrade from the Canon 10o Ixus is digital camera I was using and I'm definitely not use to the weight or all the settings, so I'm still very much a beginner in the realm of Digital SLR's. However I'm going to persevere and try and learn all of the settings.

So without further ado...

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Asos
As soon as I spotted the new OPI Mini Designers Series set (£13.00/here) I had to Google the polishes for swatches and then when I found this swatch of Coronation and this swatch of Classic I knew I had to purchase the set! Just super sparkly and gorgeous! 

The only shade I don't really love is Reflection (red shimmer) as it's just not as special as the rest and I do have quite a few red shimmery polishes already from the OPI Burlesque collection. I've made a point of not showing any swatches as these really deserve a post of their own and definitely a NOTD post very soon of my favourite, which is Coronation.

uhiuyiu

Boots
Next up is a mixture of online and in store purchases at Boots. I firstly placed an order online for two 17 Mirror Shine On Lipstick in Peace & Nudist Peach as they are currently HALF PRICE for only £2.49 each (see here) and of course with two 17 products at the moment you receive the All About Nude palette for free, which is kind of nice. I had them delivered to store so I didn't defeat the purpose of buying them which is how I came to acquire two other product! 

I decided to buy a new tube of the 17 Wild Curls mascara in Black (£6.29) as mine was feeling a bit empty and it really is my favourite high street mascara. I also discovered quite an empty shelf of Ruby & Millie brushes which are of course being discontinued so were all reduced to low prices so I managed to get the last i-Define brush for only £1.66. However Lady from a Tramp managed to get the same brush for an amazing 41p when it went through the till in her local store... so it is worth a look!

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Superdrug 
I also popped into Superdrug this week which is something I rarely do for some unknown reason, as it is great in there! It shows how little I go in as I have only just signed up for the Beauty Card and I must say I was right about the mirror on the card looking like the mirrors they put in children's toys! 

Anyways, so I instantly got lured in by the Sue Moxely stand as all the products were half price however I resisted purchasing the whole stand as I've never very sure what is going on with the Famous by Sue Moxley range... I mean currently everything is half price and I'm wondering why and they still don't have a website even though they have been saying it's coming soon on their Facebook page for the last year, so who knows! So I picked up the Lip palette as I've never seen anything similar on the high street which was £4.50 down from £9.00 (slightly too steep to start with) and two baked eye shadows for £2.50 - bargain! 

I also purchased two more of the Beauty UK Lip Lusts as I really do like them in Sweet Sixteen and Playboy which were £2.99.

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Home Sense/TK Maxx 
I certainly have a love/hate relationship with both Homesense and TK Maxx. They both are really great stores for finding high end products at really low prices however I'd say at least half of the beauty products are totally ruined by either being tested by stupid people or again someone opening a bottle and then leaving it to leak all over the other products! 

But to go off on a bit of a tangent I was mentioning on Twitter that a few of my local Tesco stores have put up a sign above each make up stand stating that if you try any make-up other than the testers provided that you will be asked to purchase the make-up. Go Tesco, hey! And I must say I have noticed a difference... no messy stands with opened/used products. So simple, yet so affective! TK Maxx and also the other stores *looks up* really need to get on board with this ASAP! 

Back to haulin' haha I actually picked up a sticky bottle of Tigi Cherry Almond Firm Hold Hairspray for only £3.00 which I instantly de-contaminated with my Bath & Body Works Hand Sanitizer (courtesy of Skin Scrubs) and a baby wipe! I also discovered an amazing new facial brush. Now if you don't already know, I have a bit of a thing for my Botanics Face brush - it actually transformed my skin, well it still does but it's looking a bit worse for wear now. So this new face brush came into my life just at the right time and it's even better than the Botanics one! It's from a company called Hydrea London and was part of a set that included a nail brush which is always handy for the bargainous price of £3.99. 

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Asda 
After the lovely Liloo mentioned the new MNY nail polish range (£2.98 each) in Supergdrug (read about it here) I kept my eyes peeled in hope I would spot them in my local store, but I actually came across them in Asda. Now I actually mentioned about MNY (the sister line of Maybelline) coming to the UK almost a year ago (post here) and so they have clearly been slow coaches and only got their act together now... but I'm not complaining as I spotted some lovely looking polishes.

I only picked up two shades as you never know the formula of a new range. I would tell you the shade numbers but I can't actually remember right now. See this is why shade numbers for makeup are so pointless! I've only tried out the left one so far are have to say I love it!


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Amazon
Last but not least I bought two books with my free £15 Amazon voucher from LoveFilm. I tweeted about this last week but I know most of you probably thought it was too good to be true/a bit of a swizz. Basically to get the free £15 Amazon voucher all you need to do is sign up to Love Film for a free 30-day trial (here) with the code AMAZON15 and then you place ten rentals into your account and they dispatch the first two discs to you.... you can then either watch them or not and you receive your £15 Amazon voucher via email.

I personally didn't need the Love Film service so I watched one of the DVDs and then sent them both back. Then made sure to empty my rental list of the 8 titles left in there so they didn't send me anymore and then I cancelled my account. Though if you did want to try out the service for the full 30 days you would just have to make a note of the end of the free trial date so not to incur the cost of the first payment of the service. Am I making sense?? If I'm not, I'm sure you will understand it all if you read all the info on the site. But it is a really good deal!

Seriously how did I write so much! I mean this was supposed to be a quick post! 
Oh well, hope you enjoyed the better pictures.

Fee xx 


24 August 2011

GIVEAWAY!! Win a £150 Giftcard to Spend Anywhere! CLOSED

I haven't done a giveaway in what seems like forever but as you are all super lovely readers I wanted to give something back and bring you something really good.

So I have teamed up with the Post Office to offer one lucky winner the chance to win a One4all Giftcard worth £150!

The gift card can be spent in over 17,000 stores including some lovely beauty/fashion related stores such as - Boots, New Look, Topshop, Debenhams, House of Fraser and many more. Plus you don't need to spend the whole amount in just store. How good is that!


The giveaway with be open for 30 days (UK only, sorry) and will close on - 22nd September 2011 with the winner being announced here on Makeup Savvy on Saturday 24th September 2011.

Entering couldn't be simpler - all you need to do is comment below with a simple 'enter me' and of course your first name, twitter name or blog name! No need to leave your e-mail address or become a follower. Just check back to see if you have won on 12th September.

It's as simple as that! 

I of course want to thank the Post Office for providing this great gift for one lucky winner and make sure to check out the Post Office site for some great deals on savings.

Also would love to hear what you would spend the card on if you won!

Fee xx

23 August 2011

Denman Be-Bop Massage Shampoo Brush

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Today I want to talk about a new discovery and something I think could be a more affordable option to the Tangle Teezer which I also own.

Now firstly the Denman Be-Bop Massage Brush (Amazon/£3.50 here) is designed for massaging the scalp during shampooing which is a slightly odd concept if you ask me as 1. You generally massage your scalp with your fingers when shampooing your hair to slather it up and to make sure you have washed the roots. 2. Shampooing is normally a quick affair in which you don't stand there with extra time to spare to be massaging your scalp with a little brush. 3. Who wants to massage shampoo into their scalp? 4. Surely it would create more knots while shampooing.

I'm sounding like I don't like the brush aren't I? 

Well you see I bought the brush thinking all  pf the above and not liking the whole concept of it however I thought it would make an excellent conditioner brush... which is what the brush should be marketed as in my opinion.

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Once I had received it in the post from Amazon I decided to try out both ways... first massaging my scalp with shampoo in my hair which resulted in everything I mentioned above and it being a bit pointless, though massaging my scalp was a lot more enjoyable than I had though (like the feeling of an itch being...itched!) but it just wasn't practical. Then I tried it again with conditioner in my hair going from my scalp to the ends of my hair which was lovely as not only did it massage my scalp still but the brush removed all the knots and with the conditioner it felt super smooth and lovely. But the surprise came when I washed the conditioner out of my hair as it just felt soooo soft and with zero knots, kind of like the brush has helped the conditioner be more effective! 

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I've also been using it after showering in place of my Tangle Teezer and I have to say I think I like it more! The Tangle Teezer obviously does a great job but I have found the bristles to be slightly too flexible so it does take a few attempts to remove knots however the Be-Bop bristles are slightly thicker and more rigid which like the Tangle Teezer removes the knots out of wet/damp or even dry hair within tugging but more effectively I would say. Though it can't be used with a hair dryer or else it may melt! It also states it's particularly suitable for short to medium-length hair though I have quite long hair and I'm not seem any problems but I'd agree that it probably works even better! 
 
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I now really think I've found a winning shiny silky hair combination with the Denman Be-Bop and Vo5's Miracle Concentrate! 

Basically what I'm trying to say it that this £3.50 brush (here) is pretty similar to the Tangle Teezer and if you have been wanting the Tangle Teezer(here) but not the price tag then you should get the Denman Be-Bop... and seriously how cool is the name of it?!


22 August 2011

Blogs I'm Loving at the Moment...

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From time to time I realize I have a clear favourite blog so I write it on the Sticky Notes of my desktop so that I can just click on it anytime I want.

So I thought it was time to share the six blogs that are on that list!

1

Mademoiselle Lala
READ
Mademoiselle Lala is a simple, easy to read fashion blog which is mainly made up of outfit posts which are quirky but cute and stylish. The blog also contains the odd makeup post which are always nice. Just a lovely blog to visit when you have a spare few minutes!

4

Becoming Lola
READ
I can't decided whether I prefer all the amazing images of food on Becoming Lola or the blog authors writing style! I think I may actually love both in equal measures.... though all the amazing foodography on one blog does make me drool, especially come 3pm when my cupcake craving kicks in! Amazing recipes and a great read.

3

Sailboat
READ
Sailboat is a blog about make-up, clothing, jewellery, photography and other lovely things. But unlike a lot of other blogs I read, Jenni's personality shines through every post... whether she's talking about her boyfriend or her cute rabbit Ralphie or even how she feels about the future, she connects with all her readers which is clearly visible by all the comments she receives. Just a lovely down to earth girl with a treasure of a blog.

5

ByCeline
READ
It was only recently that I discovered Celine's blog and I have to say I'm in love with it. It's professional looking, interesting and she does the best eye tutorials with amazing step-by-step images. It's also interesting reading all her travel posts and seeing all the amazing places she visits. Also she is pretty damn beautiful!

2

Le Petit Jardin de Liloo
READ
Liloo is one lovely creative lady with a lovely creative blog to match! Her makeup looks are all about being fun and trying something new and are just great to see... they really do inspired me to be more creative... even if it's just by using a bit of green eyeliner now and again! She's also all about low end products like Beauty UK, Sleek and MUA etc so all the products she talks about are within any ones budget. Just a lovely blog to read.... oh, and it is sure to give you nail envy!

6

Erin Ever After
Erin Ever After is my little piece of escapism where everything is pretty to look at and perfect. As I'm getting married next year I love Erin's wedding posts with lots of images of inspiration that I like to add to my wedding folder on my desktop. It is at the end of the day a blog with lots of photos by other people but all the images are all the ones I'd look for myself but all in one space to browse though at my leisure instead of visiting hundreds of websites. A visual treat!

Hope you have discovered at least one new blog and enjoyed this post!

Have you got any current favourite blogs?

Fee x

21 August 2011

Beauty Products for only £1!

Bargain_makeup

Numerous times I'm been shopping in Superdrug & Boots and I haven't really taken much notice of the prices... well that is until the sales assistant tells me it's £25+ for only 4 or 5 items! Of course I'm never going to say I don't want the products anymore... because I do, but four 'low end' products for sometimes £30 doesn't sound all that savvy or even that low end to me!

So I wanted to show you and kind of prove to myself, that you can purchase 5 products for under £5 as my total shop above cost me only £4.97! Even though all five product cost £1 each I still managed to purchase brands like Maybelline and Scholl and not just all cheaper lines. However I have includes a bit of a round up of product that retail for £1 below but that are quite good brands that would normally cost considerably more.

But firstly I want to share with you my bargain £5 shop! 

Firstly I purchased the obvious £1 eyeshadow from MUA at Superdrug (shade 11)... MUA now have a pro range which costs around £4, however it's still worth remembering how good the £1 core line is. The best products I'd say are their lipsticks, pearl eye shadows, nail polish and also their clear mascara is pretty handy!

MUA_eyeshadow_pearl

Next to George at Asda with the £1.00 8ml nail polish... now sometimes the George nail polishes are £1.25/£1.50 but half of the time they are £1 which is great as they really as good nail polishes and the range contains at least 30 nail polishes, which they update regularly! 

Next up is your friend... Poundland haha, no but really, joking aside Poundland are just incredible range for money and so many good products can be found there. This time I found Maybelline's Define-A-Lash volume mascara in Brown which is great for using on my bottom lashes to make my top lashes stand out more. The mascara only a month ago could be bought from Tesco, Superdrug etc for £7.99!

Talking of Superdrug I decided to purchase an eye cream after having a bit of a disaster with my last one. So I opted for the Anti-aging eye cream from the Natural High range... it was on special offer at the time along with the Brightening Eye Cream which I've been told is pretty good. 

Last but not least I purchase the Scholl Hard Skin and Callus File from Tesco for only 97p! It's double sided so that you can smooth of the skin after use and I have to say it's really good. Plus you can actually purchase it with your online grocery shop here if you shop at Tesco or just in-store.

So all in all a pretty good shop for only £5.00 and I must say it is quite satisfying, purchasing products that aren't the Chit Chat £1 make-up line in Poundland or clearance products with nasty sticky labels! 
 
Again, the following products are only £1 each and I've tried my best to include products that would normally retail for quite a bit more!

Fragrance_direct
From centre product, clockwise


All the above products can be found at Fragrance Direct - Ciate Underwear Base Coat (here), Essence 4-in-1 File (here), Rimmel Lycra Pro Nail Polish (here), Ciate Stripped Nail Polish Remover (here), Bourjois 1 Seconde Nail Polish (here), Rimmel Glam Eyes Professional Liquid Liner (here).


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Tesco Cucumber Face Scrub (80p - here), N-Spa Gingerbread Latte Whipped Body Cream (Asda - here), MUA lipstick (Superdrug - here), Cuticure Citrus Hygiene Gel (89p - here), Huggies Baby Wipes (Poundland - Use as makeup wipes), Revlon Nail Enamels (Poundland).

mix


Bourjois Metallic Eyeliner (Fragrance Direct - here), Tesco Sensitive Eye Make Up Remover (80p - here), Rimmel Vinyl Stars Lip Glos (Fragrance Direct - here), Tesco Wake Up Pomegranate Shower Creme (here), Montagne Jeunesse White Chocolate Face Masque (Superdrug, Tesco etc), Bourjois Mini Cream Blush (Fragrance Direct - here).

Just think if you purchased everything above you would still have £2.50 change from £20! It really is amazing what you can find for only £1 when you are actually looking.

Would love to know your best £1 purchases if you have any?

20 August 2011

Sigma Travel Brush Kit Review

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I've had this brush set for what seems like forever and have thoroughly used all the brushes - a lot I now use daily. So I thought it was about time I reviewed them. Plus surprisingly the set is quite cheap as it is a travel set... which I have so far seen no difference to the full sized brushes other than a slightly shorter handle length and them being a tiny bit smaller! 

First things first I want to talk about the price and also about paying for delivery from America as I know most people aren't too keen on hefty delivery costs and them dreaded custom charges! Sooo... if you have ever been on the Sigma website you will have noticed that it's all in dollars and can't be changed to any other currency (which is kind of annoying) but hey ho! So on my little calci-puter/converter I worked out the following...

The Sigma Travel Kit Naughty in Black (here) is $49.00 (£29.73) and shipping to the UK is $11.39 (£6.91) and custom charges etc are all covered. So the full total for the Travel Kit is £36.64 which works at only £4.58 per brush. Pretty good hey! 

I'm going to try and not make this review too long so here are some small reviews of each brush in the kit...

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Reviews from top left clockwise...

Large Angled Contour F40
This is my favourite brush out of the whole set without a doubt... okay, I do have one other favourite, maybe. I use this with my Bourjois Bronzing Powder to contour my face nearly every single day. It just fits under the cheekbones perfectly to contour with ease and blends... umm with ease! It can also be used to apply blusher but I kind of see that as a bit of a waste with such a lovely brush that is just so ideal for contouring with. I've also washed this numerous times and it has kept it's shape and hasn't shed a single hair which I'm really impressed with! 
 
Large Powder F30
This is another brush I use daily and really like.. but I really wish I have two of these as I love brushing off/buffing in my translucent powder and I also love applying powder blush with it, but of course when I do that I can't use it for powdering my face! I think my favourite way to use it is with powder as I apply my Rimmel Stay Matte with the ELF Powder brush by patting it onto the skin and then I use the F30 brush to sweep it off the skin or sometimes I like to use it in circular motions, almost buffing it in to give a more flawless matte finish if I'm going out at night. The brush is just so soft and light, perfect for all powder products as it just sweeps over the skin beautifully. As for shedding I've maybe lost 2 or 3 hairs with this... so really good for such a soft brush.
 
Foundation F60
I do like this and I use it quite a lot but I'm not as wowed by it as the other two face brushes. As foundation brushes go it is a nice one - I like the shape and how soft it is... but like all foundation brushes it does get foundation suck in it which does lead to an icky second/third application after washing, so it does have to be washed in between uses... which really isn't going to happen. Also it does leave slight brush marks/streaks so I do find myself blending the foundation with my fingers slightly to give a nicer finish. It's not the best but it's also not the worst.

Concealer F70 
I must admit I don't really use this so I can't really even give a brief review on it! I haven't got anything against it, it's just I use another brush for my concealer which I love! So there is just no need to use this one. Though I have to say if I was to use it I'd use it on larger areas that I wanted to concealer maybe before my foundation - like redness. Just because it seems to spread concealer, if that makes sense... so a little concealer goes a long way with this brush, so not one for using on small blemishes.

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Tapered Blending E40
This is the brush I mentioned that I love which I use for blending my concealer! Yes, I know it's a E40 so it's for the eye but frankly the brush is too large for my socket/eye so I tried it on blending out my concealer and it just works a dream... another huge favourite of mine that I use every single day without fail. Never actually had a brush that blends concealer this well. The only down side to this otherwise perfect brush is that it sheds and for the first month or so it did shed quite a bit. But it has slowed down now and it sheds only a few hairs every now and again.

Pencil E30
Another nice little brush... again nothing too amazing but it does it's job nicely. I normally use this with eye shadows from my UD Naked Palette to run a bit of eyeshadow on my lower lid or I use it to smudge out pencil liner on the top lid, though it is a tad too soft to smudge out some pencil eyeliners. If I did more with my eyes I could see this being great for adding colour to certain parts of the lid before blending. Definitely a handy brush to have. 
 
Eye Shading E55
If I'm honest I'm just not that into this brush. The brush is meant for packing on pressed or loose eyeshadow which it does but I just feel it shouldn't of been as short as it is... which could just be me. Plus I don't tend to pack eye shadows onto my lid or go for that bold of a look so I find I don't really use it. Though I do sometimes use it to place eyeshadow into the crease, which I then blend with the Blend & Contour No7 brush. Really would of preferred to have seen maybe an eyeliner brush instead of this if I'm honest!  

FREE Duo Fibre F50
Oh, how I love this brush! It's like the multitasker of the kit! Now in an ideal world I would use this to apply my foundation everyday as it gives an amazing finish.... however I have combination skin which is dry in areas, such as around my nose, which means when I use this it kind of exfoliates the skin making the dry parts more noticeable and also making my foundation cling to them areas. Though I do use it when I've really exfoliated my skin with my Botanics brush and it looks lovely... so it is hit and miss for me, but if you don't have dry skin then this will work perfectly for you. So seeing as I don't use it to apply foundation with most of time, I use it to apply highlighter to the top of my cheeks or I use it will a mousse bronzer or a cream blush. Just a really good multi-tasking brush that again doesn't shed... though the dye does seem to come out of it when I wash it, which is a bit odd. 
 
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Overall 
I should first mention the faux leather purse/wrap that all the brushes come in as it is really good quality for the price and it pretty handy! It holds all the brushes except for the free Duo Fibre brush but it does have a zip compartment for extras, such as an extra brush and some cotton buds or eyelash curlers etc. It also has a flap that protects the brushes which is a nice touch and a magnetic close with is handy for keeping it all together.. just an all round nice brush wrap really. 

As for the set as a whole it really is great and amazing for the money as you do get a wide range of pretty versatile brushes. The brushes also feel really well made and pretty indestructible with minimal shedding. This set would be equally suited to someone that is only just getting into makeup or for someone that already has quite a few brushes. 

I'm now quite tempted to purchase the Premium Travel Kit (here) which contains four eye brushes and three face brushes but I do have quite a large collection of brushes already so I may just have to wait and ask Father Christmas for the set! 

PS. Enter 'GLOW2011' at the checkout up until August 31st to receive 10% off... no affiliate link here, just found it though Google. Plus you will also receive a free gift if you spend over $30... okay I'm actually going to have to buy the Premium Travel Kit now it seems!
 

19 August 2011

Stargazer Crackle Nail Polish = Converted!

Stargazer_Crackle_Nail_Polish

My first brush with crackle nail polish was with the 17 Nail Xtras Crackle Top Coat only a week or so ago and if you read my post you would of seen I wasn't all too impressed with crackle nails. I tried it over multiple nail polishes and I just didn't like the effect at all.... and I thought I'd hate black crackle nail polish even more! 

However I totally went and surprised myself after trying the Stargazer BLACK Crackle nail polish (no.601 -£3.50) which again like the 17 one is a cheapy polish and I instantly liked the effect! This polish compared to the 17 crackle top coat is much more... crackly! Plus it doesn't have that odd texture to it... it's flat and not raised like the 17 one was. 

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Also I'm really loving the shade underneath as it just goes with the black crackle and it actually reminds me of the China Glaze Crackle Metals collection (promo image here) which I'm guessing costs more than a mere £2.50 a bottle!

I'm just really impressed as I didn't think I'd ever like crackle nails THIS much! I practically hated them last week. But I do sadly put it down to the 17 crackle polish now.  

4

If I had to be slightly negative and it is hard... it would be about the Chrome nail polishes bottles. The one above is the blue toned chrome (no.233 -14ml) and I also have the silver chrome no.(232 - 14ml) but they look exactly the same packaging wise, except for a little label on the top of each polish....which I'm sure will drop off at some point. But then again they are only £2.50 each!

But other than that I really can't see any faults with either nail polish... and I'm now tempted to purchase the red chrome for under the Crackle nail polish as well and I think the black crackle over the chrome polish works really well together. 


I am still unsure what I'd wear when sporting crackle nails though as anything too patterned would just clash and crackle nails are definitely not suited to looking smart.

However I am definitely now a convert to a bit of crackle!

Boudoir Prive & How it Compares to Glossy Box

Boudoir_Prive_Box

After my review of the Glossy Box (here) a lot of the comments and tweets showed an interest in what Boudoir Prive would have to offer. Well the wait is over and we can finally see if it will be a better option to the box Glossy Box provides. 

Well instantly I can say that the two boxes are totally different and are targeted at different demographics entirely. Which is actually quite nice as really what would be the point of two monthly beauty box subscriptions being very similar, seeing as the concept is so new.

How It Works 
For £10 a month with free delivery you receive 5-6 deluxe size samples. The types of products will fall into skincare, body care, hair, makeup, lifestyle or fragrance categories. The subscription works on a monthly basic by direct debit and can be canceled at any time.

7

Contents  
  • Olavie Antioxidant Body Body medium sample (Full size - 240ml/£43.55)
  • Jane Iredale PureLash Extender & Conditioner small tube (Full size - 89ml/£13.00)
  • Sachajuan Conditioner 100ml sample (Full size - 250ml/£20.00)
  • Bloom Green tea & White tea duo  2 teabags (pack of 10 teabags/£4.00)
  • Babor HSR Lifting Extra Firming Cream good size pot (Full size -50ml/£82.00)
  • Etat Libre D'Orange - Like This small vial (Full size - 50ml/£74.00)
  • Etat LibreD'Orange - Rien small vial (Full size -50ml/£52.50)
 
I actually saw the contents before I received my own box through Twitter and other beauty blogs and I have to say I instantly thought it looked a bit on the bland side and definitely not my cup of tea. But once I received it I actually surprised myself by how much I liked it... I spent at least ten minutes looking over the products, opening them and giving them a good sniff. My instant though was that it was more focused than the Glossy Box and definitely more interesting. 

4

The Good 
Out of all six products I only knew of two brands - Jane Iredale and Etat Libre D'Orange but had never tried either. My favourite is maybe the obvious Sachajuan conditioner as it is quite a generous sample and after using it I can confirm it is pretty amazing. Next favourite is the Jane Iredale PureLash product as I have recently been looking for a primer for my mascara, something that will lengthen and look after my lashes, plus it only retails for £13.00 so definitely affordable. I'm also quite liking the Olavie body butter as it feels lovely on the skin and it smells of alcohol! As for the Babor Firming cream it actually looks really nice but I decided to give it to my mum who was quite pleased to receive it and will use it alot more than me. 

I also had a sneaky peek at the Boudoir Prive facebook page as I've found it's a gauge of which brands will feature in upcoming boxes. You can find out this info by looking at which brands Boudoir Prive have 'liked' as why would they like another brand otherwise :) So fingers crossed that upcoming boxes will feature the following 'liked' brands - Moroccan Oil, China Glaze, Bare Escentuals, Murad, Aveda, By Terry, Perricome MD, Paul & Joe and many more. But you know... I may be wrong!


6

The Bad
Really... teabags? Okay, maybe it does come under lifestyle, but really? Or maybe it's because I'm not a tea-drinker, but these really just don't float my boat. As for the Etat Libre D'Orange samples even though they are deluxe fragrances I just find the size of the samples a bit on the rubbish side.

Another thing I'm not too pleased about is none of the products show the ingredients, especially the Jane Iredale mascara type product as if it contains nylon fibres to extend the lashes it really can't be used whilst wearing contact lenses... plus it would just be nice to see what each product contains.

8 

Glossy Box Vs. Boudoir Prive - Which is the best to go for?
 I'm personally a bit confused about which box I like the most as the Glossy Box does contain at least one knockout product each month as I do like the brands that it has contained so far... though I didn't get excited as I thought I would, when I opened it. Though on the other hand, I did get excited when I opened the Boudoir Prive box as it felt like the product were really high quality and special products that I would never be able to try out otherwise. But having said that I don't think the box is aimed at someone like me and I doubt I would purchase any of the samples at full size.... oh, but the products have been pretty nice for the first box.

Glossy Box (here) - If you love your high end labels then you will be fairly pleased with this. Plus expect the odd full size product in there! (£13/month)
Boudoir Prive (here) - This is the one to go for if you really want to discover new quite niche products that are definitely high end. (£10/month)


I really thought I'd be saying I preferred GlossyBox but surprisingly I found Boudoir Prive more interesting and just more thought out. However if Glossy Box did tweak a few things then it would also make a great and interesting box... I just think more thought needs to go into the boxes

But as mentioned, both boxes are totally different... so it's just a case of working out which would suit you best!

18 August 2011

Part 3: Best of High Street Makeup

Collection_2000_Boots

I'm back again with my round-up of the best products from all the high street make-up brands!
Here are my personal favourite products from Collection 2000, Boots No7 and Sleek. 


Collection 2000
Collection 2000 to me is a true high street makeup line and hasn't changed in recent years like other brands. It's still cheap, fun and simple. But if you look closely you will find some real gems!

 
Hotlooks Fast Dry Nail Polish (8ml/£1.79)
The phrase 'hot looks' and the font do slightly term me of these nail polishes however I always have to put that aside as the shade range is so nice and fun. The shades definitely try to be on-trend and really as the best low cost nail polishes I have found aside from George at Asda nail polishes. They are all fairly opaque taking only two coats and looks quite shiny and even when applied. Just nice little nail polishes for such a small price. 
 
 Lasting Perfection Concealer (£4.19)
This is definitely the hidden gem of the brand, as for the price this is the best opaque concealer you will find on the high street! If you do suffer from spots and find your current concealer isn't doing a good enough job in covering them then really, try this! My go-to concealer for spots and even concealering under eye circles. Just a dream concealer that lasts!

Dazzle Me! Eye Dust (Around £3 each from eBay) 
 Forget Barry M Dazzle Dusts, these are were it's at! Okay... well maybe not as they have been stupidly discontinued by Collection 2000. But still, you can find these on a lot of websites, in pound shops and there are tons on eBay to be had, so at least if you want a certain shade you can get it still. The pigments come/came in such lovely shimmery pearlescent shades and I highly doubt anyone would be able to finish one of the pots as you need so little but you get so much product. The gold/pink shade above is Paradise and the green/gold is Lustrous.

No7_Boots

No7
To me No7 are a mid-priced brand that quite a lot of people find over priced. But I do think the quality of the products do warrant the prices. There is nothing bold about No7 but if you want to look polished and preened then this is the brand for you. However it is nice that Boots do the £5 off vouchers so often - making No7 an affordable brand for anyone. 

 
No7 Brushes (From £7.00
These along side Eco Tools are the best makeup brushes on the high street. They may seem a little steep per brush  but with the No7 £5 off vouchers they become very affordable. The best brushes from No7 seem to be their eye brushes with my favourite being the Blend & Contour brush for blending eyeshadow... I actually have 4! I also love the precision eyeliner brush, which I own two of - one for concealer and one for with gel eyeliner. These really are a staple of my brush collection and they have really held up well. Really nice brushes.

Stay Perfect Eye Mousse (5ml/£9.00)
These really as just lovely mousse eye shadows that glide onto the eyelids and blend easily even with just using the fingers. I think these are aimed at the over 40's so really won't stay for anyone with oily lids. But for anyone over 40 or anyone with normal eyelids these really do look lovely. Just the right amount of shimmer and they do come in some lovely tones. Very flattering for most eyes. 
 
Quick Cover Blemish Stick (3g/£8.00)
I feel I'm becoming a broke record with these concealers now as I must have talked about them over 6 times on my blog already... but I do own 4 of the shades! This product just works wonders for oily spots... and lets face it, which over high street brand has a concealer that is focused towards oily skin and soaking up excess oil? None! So if you do have oily skin that breaks out a lot then this really is the concealer designed for you!


Sleek_Superdrug

Sleek 
Sleek are still fairly new to the high street but have some A-mazing products that not only give you a lot for your money but are also really good quality. Sleek really are the only high street brand that caters for all skin tones and has the largest shade range of all the high street foundations! Just really impressive and a fun brand to use. 


New Skin Revive Foundation (35ml/£7.30)
This is just a good quality foundation that I actually cannot see any flaws with. Like I mentioned above, this foundation has the largest selection of shades with 30 in total, plus for only £2.99 (here) you can purchase a tester kit that comes with 5x2ml shade samples with a choice of 5 shade ranges to pick from, so that you can find your perfect match. This definitely contains more silicone than other foundations I own, so it applies and blends very easily. The coverage is medium and the finish is semi-matte and is also oil-free. Not a hugely mentioned foundation online or in the media but definitely one to try out for the quality and price! 
 
Eyeshadow Palettes (£6.49)
Now if you like eye shadows and haven't got at least one of these palettes then you NEED to, right now! These really are a lovely addition to the high street... though I think I may have enough now with my 6 palettes. Each palette contains 12 good sized eye shadows in mainly shimmery and frost shades with a few mattes in each palette. My favourites have to be either the Storm i-divine palette or the Oh So Special palette. Super pigmented, super smooth and just super lovely.
 
Sleek Blush (8g/£4.30)
These blushes are my favourites, ever! Yes, I said it and I do actually mean it... I think! I'm not a massive blusher fan, though I do wear it most days. However these blushers just come in some of the best shades and they really do complement the skin. Again like the eye shadows the blushes are highly pigmented and you only need the smallest of amounts, meaning one 8g blush with last you forever. If you don't trust me on this, have a quick swatch when you next spot a Sleek stand in Superdrug.


Should I make a Part 4? Or is that pushing it! I feel like I could go on and on with these posts but then really would I have anything to post about?! 

Read Part 1 & 2 featuring - Rimmel, Maybelline, Natural Collection, Elf, 17 and Bourjois here

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