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Sunday, 31 May 2009

May's The Good and The Bad

Wow a month as passed since I did my last one. All products mention have had some serious usage this month but it's not necessarily stuff I've bought new.

The Good:

MAC Cleanse Off Oil, literally melts off all traces of make-up with minimal effort.
Elemis Tri Enzyme Resurfacing Facial Wash, gives gentle daily exfoliation leaving skin smooth and glowing.
Elemis Pro Collagen Marine Cream, does wonders for my skin but I do feel I'll need to change soon as it can be a feel a little greasy when the weather is warmer and it as no SPF.
MAC Studio Fix Powder, been using this to set my liquid foundation and I love that it gives some coverage too.
Giorgio Armani Micro-Fil Loose Powder in 1, I use this on days were I want a more dewy look.
Chanel Inimitable Mascara, I like that it lenghtens and curls and It doesn't flake or smudge.
NARs Irrisistiblement Bronzer, it gives a nice realistic bronzed glow to my skin and look better with my skintone than Laguna
NARS Torrid Blush, been using this one a lot I love it for summer.
NARS Albatross Highlighter, can't live without product all year round.
YSL Pure Lipstick in #148 Tea Rose, love using this one with MAC's Pink Fish over the top.
MAC Tinted Lip Conditioner in Pink Fish, great over YSL's Tea Rose or any light pink lipstick for that matter.
Barry M Nail Paint in #304 Mint Green, just as the shade name says this is a pretty pastel mint green shade, goes on smooth and doesn't chip easily.
L'Oreal Serie Expert Vitamino Color Shampoo, slows down fading for my red hair
L'Oreal Serie Expert Vitamino Color Conditioning Mask, great cream/gel texture so it doesn't weigh down hair.
Tigi S Factor Serious Conditioner,I use this as a treatment when my hair is feeling particulary dry.
Cibu Sashini Thermal Shine Solution, fantastic multi-purpose product, smoothing fluid, thermal protectant and shine mist all in one.
Cibu Mousse Lee Foaming Volumizer, give volume and hold without drying out my damaged hair.
Batiste Dry Shampoo, refreshes you roots between shampoos so that they don't look greasy and it's only £2
Gucci Flora, my absolute perfect summer fragrance. If you love fruity florals this is a must.

The Bad:

Foundation, it's been lovely and warm over here lately and none of my foundations are wanting to stay put, even my Chanel Mat Lumiere is slipping off my face by lunch time, it's driving me mad.
Barry M Nail paint in #300 Acid Yellow, the texture is beyond bad and I can't get a smooth finish even with two coats.

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Top 10 Eyeshadows

Out of all the eyeshadows I own these are my absolute favourites.

Swatches are from left to right:


MAC Shroom
MAC Parrot
MUFE #92
NARS Night Porter
NARS Galapagos
MAC Blanc Type
MAC Lucky Green
MAC Woodwinked
MAC Firespot
MAC Stars N' Rockets

Friday, 22 May 2009

Top 10 Blush/Bronzers

I have almost as much blush as I have lipstick so again this was very hard for me to choose.
I obviously love NARS when it come to blush and personally I think they make the best ones on the market, powder and cream.

Swatches are from left to right, Albatross isn't swatched:


NARS Orgasm
NARS Taj Mahal
NARS Angelika
NARS Torrid
Nars Luster
NARS Cactus Flower
Chanel Bronze Universel
NARS Laguna
MAC Mineralize Blush in Pleasantry

I'm also gonna add NARS Albatross as an extra 11th item, I know it's cheating but technically it's not a blush or a bronzer and I love it so much I thought it deserved a mention.

Top 10 Lipgloss

My ten most favourite glosses at the moment, obviously they are subject to change as new stuff gets released.

Swatches are from left to right:


GOSH ON Stage Cool Lip Jam in #100
NARS Turkish Delight
MAC Dazzleglass in Baby Sparks
YSL Pure Gloss in #1
YSL Pure Gloss in #2
MAC Lusterglass in Love Nectar
Chanel Glossimer in #46
Dior Diorkiss in #211 Pinapple Cocktail
MAC Dazzleglass in Fantabulous
MAC Dazzleglass in Love Alert

Top 10 Lipstick

I know almost everyone on youtube as done this but I don't post videos on youtube so I'm posting them here instead.
It was really hard for me to narrow it down to just 10 cause I have a ton of lippies but these are the ones I reach for the most.

Swatches are from left to right:


GOSH Velvet Touch Lipstick in Darling #134
YSL Rouge Volupte in Lingerie Pink #7
MAC Creme Cup
MAC Angel
YSL Pure Lipstick in Romantic Pink #146
MAC Show Orchid
NARS Manhunt
MAC Saint Germain
MAC Slimshine Long Stem Rose
GOSH Soft'n Shine Lip Balm in #30 Barbie

Thursday, 21 May 2009

Large Haul

Yes another haul, sale day at work means me spending money and I don't feel too bad as I got my staff discount on most of the stuff I bought.
I also bought some clothes but it's just basic boring stuff so I wont even bother showing it.

Lets start with the drug store stuff:


L'Oreal Telescopic Explosion Mascara: it as a little ball applicator sort of like the Givenchy one, to early to say if I like it yet as I've only used it once.
Olay Complete Care Multi-Radiance Daily Illuminating UV Fluid: love this as it's light and easily absorbed, gives a nice glow without being too shimmery and it as SPF15.
Boots Cucumber Cleansing Wipes: these were on offer two packs for £4 however I need at least 2 to remove my make up, they sting my eyes and I don't like the smell, I love my MAC Wipes and I think I'll stick with them in the future.

Barry M Mint Green and Acid Yellow

Barry M Nail Paint in #304 Mint Green: been waiting ages for this shade to it the shops and I love it, the perfect color for spring and summer.
Barry M Nail Paint in #300 Acid Yellow: this is the first polish by Barry M that I dislike, the texture is like water and it streak even after 2 coats.


Chanel Bronzer and Positano Lipstick

Aqualumiere Lipstick in Positano: great color in the tube but it hardly shows up on my lips and as the lasting power of water, also it dries my lips out to the point were they flake and feel sore.
Bronze Universel Bronzing Make Up Base: love this product so much more than both of my NARS Bronzers, it's sheer but buildable being a cream product and it gives me a more realistic tanned effect.

This is the first time trying Elemis products and they are fast becoming my favourite for skincare.

Elemis Haul

Balancing Lime Blossom Cleanser: melts make-up off fast and doesn't leave my skin feeling oily like most cleansers can.
Sensitive Cleansing Wash: haven't tried this yet but I'm sure it's wonderful.
Balancing Lavender Toner: love that it's in a spray and it doesn't leave my skin sticky, feels very calming on the skin.
Skin Buff: the best exfoliator ever my skin feels so smooth after I've used this.
Fruit Active Rejuvenating Mask: deep cleansing but at the same time it doesn't dry out my skin.

Elemis GWP

They have an offer on at the moment were if you buy 2 products you get to choose 5 travel sizes from a selection of 10 and buy a 3rd and you'll receive a full sized bottle of their Frangipani Moisture Melt.
I've wanted to try their Pro Collagen range for a while but it's so expensive and I feel I'm still a little to young to be using these on a regular basis but the travel sizes are the perfect way of trying out a product and giving skin a boost.

Elemis GWP

Pro Collagen Lifting Treatment for Neck and Bust: I like this better than I thought I would, it leaves skin very smooth and plump.
Pro Collagen Marine Cream: this is my HG skin cream it adds the perfect amount of moisture, smells heavenly and I swear my skin is so much more radiant since I've started using this. Only negative is it doesn't have built in SPF.
Pro Collagen Quartz Lift Serum: not sure I like this yet, I don't see any additional benefits from this than when I use the Marine Cream on it's own.
Tri-Enzyme Resurfacing Facial Wash: better than my old glycolic wash, it exfoliates just as well but is super gentle on skin.
Exotic Frangipani Monoi Moisture Melt: the most luxurious body treatment on the market IMO, smells gorgeous and it sinks in fast and it can be used as an hair treatment and as cuticle oil too.


Gucci Flora and Escada Ocean Lounge

Gucci Flora
Escada Ocean Lounge

Lastly MAC:

MAC Foundation

Select SPF 15 in NC20
Studio Fix Fluid in NC20
Foundation Pump

I still have not found my perfect foundation so I thought I'd give these a try, actually that's a lie I've tried Studio Fix Fluid before and it was okay but I needed more coverage at the time.
I might have to exchange it for the NC15 because I think it's slightly too dark, you can even tell in the picture that the Select SPF is a shade lighter even though the shade number is the same.

Friday, 8 May 2009

GOSH Review

I forget how long GOSH as been available in the UK, I remember walking past the counter in Superdrug but never being seduced into trying anything.
The only reason I was persuaded to try the brand was thanks to lollipop26 on youtube as she raves about the whole range especially their Darling lipstick and I have to say I completely agree with her.
The quality is outstanding especially when you consider this is drugstore make-up were talking about, I would actually say some of their product are comparable to MAC but obviously less expensive.
The packaging is mostly black and very sleek looking and they carry everything you could possibly need to do a full face.

These are the things I own and what I think of them:

Velvet touch primer: basically a cheaper version of the Smashbox Photo Finish primer. It's silicone based so it makes you face smooth as glass, your foundation will just glide on and it does not break me out.

Velvet Touch Eye Liner: these are comparable to Urban Decays 24/7 pencils, they are so creamy and smooth they just glide on. I can't believe that I actually get a full days wear out of these without them smudging on me and they cost under £5.

On Stage Cool Lip Jam: this is becoming one my favourite glosses ever. I love the shade selection, the tube aplicator, the great fruit punch scent and the fact this is a sticky gloss so it lasts and lasts.
My favourite thing about it is it's very moisturising, I almost feel like I wanna use this as a lip treatment.
Shade #100 is absolutely gorgeous, it's essentially clear but it as this really cool blue duo chrome.

Lip Gloss: this is just a standard gloss with a doe foot applicator, the shade I got (#004) is very sheer but super shiny. It's not as sticky as the Lip Jam but still lasts moderately well and as no scent or taste which can sometimes be a good thing.

Soft'n Shine Lip Balm: another favourite, I have this in the shade Barbie and to be honest the name alone was reason enough to buy it. These are basically a tinted balm, they provide just the right amount of color, shine and moisture.

Velvet Touch Lipstick in Darling: this is the only shade I've tried in the lipsticks and it's hands down my absolute favourite nude. Unlike MAC's Myth and Creme d'Nude, which have a peach undertone Darling has a pink undertone which I find far more flattering. The formula is perfect too it creamy, slighly glossy and it's not completely opaque so it's doesn't give you "corpse lips" and wash you out.
I have 3 of these now cause I have an irrational fear that they will discountinue it and also as soon as my local Superdrug as a dilivery they sell out the same day and they then take ages to restock it.

To be honest it's hard for me to say anything negative about the brand apart from the fact that it should be more readily available, I would love to see it go into department stores too as it would expose the brand to a whole new market.

Small Haul

Yep new stuff again, not much though.

I went to MAC on Thursday to check out A Rose Romance and Double Dazzle and I can honestly say I'm disappointed.
I got nothing from A Rose Romance, the colors just looked the same to ones I already had, the gel blush is the only thing worth getting but personally I find it expensive.
I love dazzleglasses so I was excited to see the new ones but a lot of them are re-promotes that I already have so I didn't get much from this collection either.
Most of them are now permanent anyways so no need to rush out and get them before they are gone.


Nars Irresistiblement Bronzing Powder: not sure on this one yet it seem to rub of my skin really quickly but I love the shade.
GOSH Darling #134 Velvet Touch Lipstick: I've been looking for this lipstick for weeks cause everywhere was sold out got a tube of it on Monday and I love it and since they restocked the shelves at my local Superdrug today I got 2 more tubes so I don't run out.
Samples of MAC Studio Fix Fluid in NC15 & NC20: my Studio Sculpt is melting of my face now the weathers getting warmer so I thought I'd try this one instead.
MAC Lashes in #41: I love these and they still manage to look sort of natural.
MAC Dazzleglass in Rags To Riches: lovely soft cool based pink and it's super sparkly.
MAC Dazzleglass in Goldyrocks: great for warming up a lipstick or giving bare lips a golden tint.

Monday, 4 May 2009

How To Keep Your Color Vibrant For Longer.

Since my previous post was about hair dye I figured it wouldn't be a bad idea to post a set of guidelines on how to keep your color from fading.

1. Use a shampoo and conditioner specifically designed for color treated hair, preferably a sulfate free one and one that as UV protection to prevent fading from the sun.

2. Use a protein conditioner once a week to deeply nourish and strenghten your hair.
Color treated hair tends to be drier and more prone to damage and what the protein treatment will do is temporarily fill in any spots that need repairing.

3. Rinse in cold water, it's hard I know but it makes such a difference in how long your color lasts. The cool water closes the hair cuticle trapping the color molecules in and giving a fantastic shine too.

4. Use a thermal heat protectant before you use any heat appliances, it will prevent your hair from any unecessary damage and slow down the fading that a blowdrier, straightener or curling tong can do.

5. If your gonna be in the sun for a long period of time wear an hat or a scarf, the sun will bleach the color right out of your hair, this is not only true for dyed hair but virgin hair too.

So there you have it, those are the basic step I follow in order to keep my hair's vibrancy for as long as I possibly can.

Sunday, 3 May 2009

Special Effects Hair Dye

This is just gonna be a quick overview and review on Special Effects hair dye.

Special Effects is a semi-permanent, brightly colored hair dye that last anything between 2 and 6 weeks, it's best used on pre-bleached hair to give the most vibrant results but can be used on dark hair to give a sheen.

Picture of my hair:


Anyone who as red hair knows how hard it is to keep this particular color vibrant as it tends to fade really fast, I find that when I have my hair dyed at the salon the vibrancy of the color last maybe 3 weeks then it fades to this dull peachy shade, this as nothing to do with the hair stylists who do my hair, they are amazing and I trust them completely.
The problem lies in the fact that professional salon hair dye isn't as strong as the Special Effects is at depositing color.
The way I use it is as a color refresher I already have my hair dyed red at the salon but I top it up in between appointments with either the shade Blood Red or Devilish.
Blood Red is a true cool red, Devilish is a cool toned pinky red, both work very well with my complexion.
They are very vibrant and noticeable, you will get a ton of people ask you about your color the best part is once it's on I don't have to re-do it for another 6-8 weeks which is great.
Now for the negatives, it doesn't contain peroxide so IT'S NOT GONNA LIGHTEN YOUR HAIR, it's deposit only so when it comes to doing your roots your gonna have to bleach before or I just get it re-dyed red at the salon which allows for my hair to absorb the Special Effects color.
Secondly it stain everything it comes into contact, your shower, towel, hands, neck, pillowcase and any light colored clothing luckily it does come off with scrubbing/washing.
All in all I highly recommend it if your looking for a long lasting, vibrant hair dye that won't damage your hair.

This is where you can get it from: the only place in the UK that sells it as far as I'm aware.

Friday, 1 May 2009

April's: The Good and The Bad

Okay so officially two days late on this one but I didn't get a chance to post yesterday.

I've tried not to include anything I bought to recently or that's not been used more than once as I feel that would be to quick to make a judgement.

The Good:

MAC Studio Moisture Cream, love the way it provides just the right amount of moisture for my combination skin.
Chanel Mat Lumiere Fluid Foundation, perfect for when my skin is oilier and needs more coverage.
MAC Studio Fix Powder, love this so much more than the MUFA HD powder to set my makeup and provide extra coverage.
NARS Laguna Bronzer, love that it's not to light, not too dark and it's not orange.
NARS Taj Mahal Blush, applied with a very light hand it makes my fair NC20 skin look alive and glowing.
NARS Albatross, perfect highlighter need I say more.
Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Eye Pencil in Zero and Bourbon, last forever on the waterline and those two shades are very versatile.
YSL Lingerie Pink Lipstick, my new favourite pink lipstick, bright but still very wearable.
MAC Angel Lipstick, perfect nude everyday pink.
MAC Show Orchid Lipstick, I absolutely love this lipstick it's the perfect bright cool pink shade that make your teeth look whiter too.
Gosh Cool Lip Jam in #100, looks white in the tube but goes on clear with a blue irridescence, how cool is that?
Kerastase Nectar Thermique, the best heat protectant in the world.
Batiste Original Dry Shampoo, perfect for when you can be bothered to wash your hair but still want it to look clean.
Tigi Bed Head Afterparty, the only thing that makes my hair look smooth an shiny.

The Bad:

MAC Penultimate Liner, used it twice and it dried up complete waste of money.
Barry M Lip Paint in #100 and #101, super dry texture and doesn't go on smooth.
Wella Enrich Mask, did absolutely nothing for my hair apart from make it frizzy.