Monday, 30 March 2015

The "No- Make- up" Make-up Essentials

There are days when my eyes want a break, but I still want to leave the house and not look like a zombie. Unfortunately I don't have that great skin and strong brows which means i can look flawless at all times. There are three basic steps to follow to perfect your natural face if you're in a rush, or if you just don't fancy blending any eyeshadow today (it happens)

Step 1: Base
Something fresh, light, and radiant makes the best quick base fix. My base of choice is the Rimmel Radiance BB cream in Very Light. This is a fairly new purchase for me but I LOVE it. So light, so fresh, but decent coverage. Pretty radiant but not as glowy as the Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum. Love it. Check it out. Now. 
Next, wack on some concealer. I pop a bit of the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in Fair on any blemishes, and the L'Oreal Touche Magique under my eyes.

Step 2: Brows
My brow products of choice are the Kiko eyeshadows, just mixed together and swished through my brows to make them a bit fuller and ...just better. Sorting your brows out makes everything look more ready, and your face look more framed and beautiful. I envy people with beautiful dark brows...
Flick some brow gel (I use Natural Collection Clear Mascara) through them brows to keep them in place.

Step 3: Blush
A bit of blusher perks up your face so well. Choose one which is also illuminating so you don't need to bother with highlighter. My go-to brush is MAC's Peachykeen. It's really sheer so I can build it nicely to get a nice flush.

Thanks for reading!
Lou x

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Revolution Ultra Blush Palette Sugar And Spice ~ Mini Review and Swatches

This is the Make Up Revolution Blush Palette in Sugar and Spice which is a set of 8 'blushes'.
It is a strange set of powders to be honest, with two intensely glittery, unwearable highlighters at the far end, and then 6 completely matte, insanely pigmented powders in the rest of the palette.

1. Is a colour I stayed completely clear of until very recently. It's like a deep browny peach which I thought would be horrible on pale skin, but actually looks really natural, and can be used as a contour/bronze/blush hybrid because its matte
2. Is a really dark bright pink, I will never ever use this colour to be honest. It's so pigmented and dark that it just won't look right on my skin, so I don't think I'll ever use this colour, but  I think would look really nice on darker skin.
3. is a lighter, less brown version of 1, as you can see, so it's a really good all-in-one shade.
4 & 5 are ridiculously similar, I tend to use 5 rather than 4, I just think it's a shade lighter, but is still quite a full-on darkish pink
6 is my favourite shade out of this whole palette. It's a proper bright coral with a huge pigment punch, love it

7 & 8 are highlighters. Now...I don't understand how you would use these, except maybe as eyeshadow. 8 especially is just...unwearable. It's incredibly, incredibly glittery, and a super bright pink. Totally unwearable and basically a little bit crazy. 7 is like the same thing but a silvery lilac, so could work as a really super intense highlight, but I still think is not very wearable.

All in all, I don't think this palette is really worth getting, unless you love a range of super matte, SUPER pigmented blushes and crazy highlights. They are so pigmented that they are quite hard to blend, so you have to apply with a really light hand. However, I love having a range of blushes in a palette, and I'm eyeing up the All-About-Cream blush palette from Revolution which I think would be more usable. 

Thanks for reading :)
Lou x

Sunday, 22 March 2015

First Impressions & Review ~ L'Oreal True Match Foundation & Touche Magique Concealer

I am still on the search for the perfect foundation, as most of my collection are not quite the ghostly- white colour which is the reality of my skin.
The only one I am wearing at the moment is the Rimmel Lasting Nude in Porcelain which is quite sheer, and is really boring to wear every day. So, the hoarder in me went wild on my lunchbreak at work yesterday and purchased the much-talked about L'Oreal True Match Foundation in R1 C1 Rose Ivory. I also bought the Touche Magique concealer pen in Ivory Beige. 
First of all, I was really really impressed with the range of colours for the true match foundation. There was a Warm, Neutral and Yellow toned foundation for each shade, which is so good ; if you're struggling to find a foundation which matches your skin, I would check out L'Oreal. I picked out the 'Rose' Ivory shade which I think is the cool shade? Judging from the C which surely means cool? However- 'Rose' suggests warm, and it does look quite warm so...who knows. Basically, I swatched all three ivories, and this was the palest. (#ghostlife) 
The concealer is full-on yellow, and supposedly illuminating, so that bodes well. Who doesn't love illumination ey? I'm after a lightweight under-eye concealer because I always find that concealer settles into my fine lines, so I thought this would be a good one to try.

Ok so, onto the first impressions. I will be checking in throughout the day to share how well it is wearing on my skin.


When I applied this, I was pleasantly surprised at how well it blended into my skin. It is quite a pink ivory (hence the name, duh), and I was panicking when I was putting it on because the rest of my skin looked quite yellow. BUT, I persevered, and it seemed to blend to my face colour. Which is amazing. The colour looks really natural, and definitely is pale enough, so, ten points so far.
I was really surprised about the finish of this. I kind of expected an illuminating but fairly- full coverage finish. However, the fluid (ew) itself is thinner than I thought it would be, and the finish is pretty matte. I am not really a fan of a full- on matte finish so I was a bit disappointed about that. 
The coverage, however, is really good. I didn't put any concealer on apart from the illuminating under eye concealer (more on that in a minute), and the scar- zone - which is located on my chin- was fairly concealed. Obviously, still visible, but not too much. I decided to not apply any concealer to this area so I could really see how it wore. I also did not apply primer.
I striped the concealer under my eyes in a scary triangle shape, and was horrified at the bright yellow colour. Yikes.
However, I went ahead and blended it, and it really sunk into my skin and blended nicely. I'm not super blown away with this concealer yet...I don't know if it's because it's pale enough to be my skin colour, so it doesn't create the dimension it would on other people...or just because it's not as illuminate-y as I thought it would be.

12 noon-
After an hour or so I am noticing that the matte- finish is settling into a more natural satin. I am so pleased. My forehead, nose, chin and cheeks are actually reflecting light rather than lying completely matte and flat, so I am much more enthusiastic at this point. I can't believe how good the coverage is- the pores on my nose and cheeks are completely camouflaged, and I'm not super bothered about not having any concealer on my chin.
The concealer under my eyes has settled a little into lines, but this always happens. I've sort- of  blended it with my fingers to make it settle, so hopefully it will last a bit better. I have to say, the coverage on this is really good for an 'illuminating' product. I'm not itching to wack some more concealer on my under eyes which is promising.


The foundation is lasting well, the natural oils on my skin (ew) have made it a lot less matte on my forehead and chin, making it look more dewy, which I like. It was really hard to  get a photo with the right light so you can see, but I hope you get some idea. Normally I would love a bit of concealer over that chin area, so apologies for my skin, which is (never) in the best shape.
The concealer seems to be holding up well too, I would prefer to have a little more coverage, but hey, it's doing well to be honest, medium coverage, and I suppose a bit brightening? Not as intense as I imagined.


My facial expressions are just getting more and more awkward as the day goes on.
Anyway, nothing new to report since 4; shinyness around the chin and forehead, which I would normally have the option of powdering, but I probably wouldn't -I don't like my face to look flat. So far I am loving this foundation.
Under-eye area is holding up really well, no more fine lines visible than normal which is always a plus.


This is my I've-been-doing-coursework-all-day-and-I'm-really-fed-up face. Can you tell?
So last check in, my make up has been on for about nine hours. The foundation lasted really really well, my chin and forehead are quite shiny by now, but that always happens because those are my oily areas. The concealer lasted really well too, I would normally touch up my concealer throughout the day and I didn't today which is good.

Overall I really like this foundation and concealer.The foundation has an amazing colour range, amazing blendability and a lovely finish. Ditto for the concealer. 
I would recommend them both!
Thank you for reading, if you enjoyed this post make sure you +1 this post and follow my blog for more reviews :)
Lou x

Friday, 20 March 2015

The New Blue

I know that I just did a Spring nails post, but I hadn't yet realised how amazing this nail polish is. 
This is the Maybelline Forever Strong Super stay 7 Day Nail Colour (whoa) in  'Surreal 635. I have to say, for some reason my camera is really brightening up the colour. In reality it's just slightly more muted and ever- so- subtly purple-y hued. I used two coats of this last night ontop of the Barry M Basecoat, Topcoat and Nail Hardener, and then added an extra layer of that this morning to really shine it up. 
So yeah- just a really nice, fresh, pretty way to wear a blue nail varnish. I like the formula of this nail varnish too, I'm not finding that the 'gel' in it makes it thicker or more long lasting than my other nail varnishes if I'm completely honest, but it's pretty good. I'd say a four or five day wear if you aren't doing anything intense with your hands (oo-er)
If you're near the highstreet I would go check this colour out as it is amazing
Thanks for reading!
Lou x

(I apologise for the hideous state of my cuticles. Ain't nobody got time for that level of upkeep.)

Thursday, 19 March 2015

MAC Cinderella Palette ~ 5 minute eye-make up

As a lover of cheaper make up (and a lover of not having an overdraft), my amount of high-end make up is very limited. However, I did invest in the MAC Cinderella Eyeshadow palette as a treat for myself for finishing some significant coursework. I had never tried MAC eyeshadows before but I really wanted to, and the price of the palette was a good deal compared to buying individual eyeshadows. I LOVE this palette. I am so glad I bought it. The six shades are so wearable for both day and night looks, and are definitely all shades I would have picked myself.
So here is a really quick easy look using the palette to create a really simple day look. I wore this with quite a sheer foundation, a pink cheek and bare lips, but I think it would look amazing with a bit of winged liner and a deep berry lip for the evening.

So here's the look. Really really simple, and heres how I achieved it-

1. Apply a mix of Vapour and Floof all over the lid (the two lightest shades) to create a really shimmery base. (I had also prepped my eyelids with Maybelline Fit Me Concealer)
2.Buff 'Quarry' into the create with a fluffy brush. This is a really really beautiful browny purple shade, and I think it is my favourite colour in the whole palette. It's such a nice colour to create a soft look without using just brown-y colours which is a good change.
3. I was going to use 'Satin Taupe' for the outer V of my eyelid but I didn't want it to be so deep so I actually switched it up for an Avon eyeshadow which is similar but a little lighter and purpler. I just applied this to the outer edge of my eyelid
4. I added a thin line of dark shadow along my lashline and pencil eyeliner to my tightline to deepen it up, and added two coats of Maybelline the Falsies mascara.
5. Add a little bit of Vapour to the browbone for a subtle highlight and  there  you have it :)

This is Phloof, Omega and the Avon Eyeshadow which has no name because its so old- the back of the compact says 'true colour healthy glow' if you were wondering! Any darker browny shimmery shade will work as this is a daytime look.

So yeah! I just wanted to share how easy it is to create an easy daytime look with this palette. It's so wearable and the powders are so blendable. I find these eyeshadows easier to use than my Urban Decay Naked 2 palette because there is no fall- out which always makes things quicker. :)

Hope you enjoyed this, thanks for reading!
Lou x

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Maybelline Colour Tattoo On and On Bronze ~ Does it last a whole day?

If you haven't heard about the Colour tattoos by Maybelline yet...have you been living under a rock?
The most talked about shade- by far- and the first one I purchased, is 'On and On Bronze', or Bad to the Bronze in the USA.
I love this as a base or on it's own, and I thought I would test it's longevity ( it does claim to have 24 hour wear) and document a whole day's wear without eyelid primer or even concealer to keep it in place.

Here's the original hand swatch. You can see how amazingly pigmented and shimmery this cream eyeshadow is with just one swipe.

 So here's how it looked about half an hour after it went onto my eye. I was  short of time this morning so there's absolutely nothing else on my eyelid apart from the colour tattoo.

Two hour time check- the colour looks roughly the same, I do notice that it fades slightly from when you first put it on and doesn't pack the same punch as when first applied.

Here's about four or five hours later. I notice with this shade the colour seems to fade but the shimmer stays put really well. It doesn't look noticeably faded and patchy, but doesn't compare to the original swatch. 

Here's the last check up of the day. I swapped eyes, I'm not sure why but they look identical to be honest. This photo is after over nine hours wear, and I have to say, for one swipe of product, this has held up pretty well. I definitely think with a concealer or primer underneath the colour would hold up a little better, or even if I just packed the product on in a second or third layer. I think this is a really good one for quick morning make-up, as the shimmer and colour stay pretty well throughout the day.
(I have to say the photos show my mascara and how well that held out during the day too- it was Maybelline Falsies)

The Pale Skin Problem

If, like me, you suffer from having  incredibly pale skin, you will know my pain. This is my foundation collection, and not one among them- even the high end 'colour matched' ones are okay on my skin. Until very very recently (details later on), I have not been able to find a foundation on the highstreet which is the right colour for my fair skin. Let's face, when it says 'Ivory' it's nearly always lying. 
So- here is a full review of ALL of my foundations, with swatches, starting from left to right.

Estee Lauder Double Wear Light, 0.5
I did SO much research on this foundation, which is something like £26, and which I bought with birthday money. To be fair, the lady who served me on the counter clearly did NOT know what she was doing, and I probably should have hesitated before I splurged on this. However, I really wanted a fairly full coverage foundation with good staying power, but nothing as heavy as the original Double Wear. I thought, for my skin, which is combination/ oily, something like this would stick to my skin and work amazingly. Unfortunately, I really don't think it has better staying power than my highstreet foundations, and the colour is slightly too dark for me. So disappointing. However, as it was so expensive, I WILL use it in the Summer when -hopefully- my face will be marginally darker. I am quite dry around my eye area, and this foundation tended to cling to those dry patches. Yum. I found that this did  work wonders when mixed with my Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum- it was less cakey and a much more satin finish, but still too dark. This shade, 0.5 is the lightest, and still not light enough
Clinique Anti Blemish Solutions, 01 Alabaster
This is probably the second best match out of any of these foundations for my skin. Slightly lighter than the Estee Lauder, and I can just about get away with it. However, because it was expensive- for me- I only use it when I need the anti- blemish properties, i.e when I have bad skin. It is definitely matte, quite long-wearing, and does seem to be kind to my skin when it's playing up. However- still not pale enough. 
Maybelline Better Skin, Light Beige
When I bought this foundation, I was so excited that it wasn't called Ivory. Finally I had upgraded to beige, it was such an exciting day for me. This actually did work well for me in the Summer when I had been abroad a lot. It is quite pink- toned, but it really does stay very well. Lovely even finish which is between matte and brightening - probably Satin. I love this foundation, and I can't wait until my face is the right colour again. I've had a look at the lighter shades of this, and the lightest- which I think was called Ivory- was still too dark.
Rimmel Match Perfection, 101 Classic Ivory
Classic Ivory, what a joke. This is one of the two darkest of my foundations, and I'm actually not even sure what I think of it. Some days I would put it on and love it, some I would hate it. On me, it applied really dewy, but then throughout the day, I would find that it has faded to a matte- so strange. Really good staying power though, and does not cake at all on me. I'm not sure if I will be loving this in the summer as it feels quite heavy, and looks almost sweaty on my face just after it's gone on, which always puts me off
Rimmel Wake me Up, 100 Ivory
I love this foundation. It is so brightening, so longlasting and so...beautiful. However, when I wear this shade, I look like a sparkly orange. Lovely foundation, horrible colour. 
Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum
I bought this foundation after hearing Fleur de Force (youtube) rave about it on her channel. I really do actually love it. The texture is unlike any other of my foundations, it goes on so smoothly, and really does make your skin look healthy. Unfortunately, 51 is the lightest colour, and this is too dark for me, and I think slightly too yellow- toned. This is the foundation I am most disappointed about, if Bourjois released a lighter shade (PLEASE) I would be on that straight away. 
Miss Sporty So Matte, 001 Ivory
This is actually the best match, and the cheapest, of my foundations. It has amazing staying power, honestly for £3.50 you can't go wrong with this, and it really IS Ivory, would you believe. However, even though the texture is fairly light, and it doesn't cake, I do not want to have matte skin. Even over an illuminating primer, this is too matte for me. Unfortunate, but true. Or maybe I'm just being fussy...

So, after despairing over the number of non- match foundations I own, especially the two expensive ones- cry- I found out that Rimmel have actually released, typically, a lighter shade in their Wake me Up and Match Perfection ranges. BRILLIANT. After spending a couple of weeks sulking, and trying to wear my current foundations, I caved and bought the new Rimmel Lasting Finish Nude in 010 Light Porcelain, which I will be reviewing in a future post.

Thank you for reading!
Lou x 

Black Swan Make -up Look ~ All Budget Beauty Products

This is the look I created for Halloween last year, and I think its such a fun easy look which looks really effective if you have any fancy dress events to go to. :)

What do you need? -

A pale foundation or white face paint (I used Miss Sporty Stay Matte in Ivory)
A Black liquid liner (I used collection 2000 Black liquid liner)
A white and a black pencil eyeliner (I picked up both from MUA for a pound each)
A grey toned contour colour (I used a grey eyeshadow)
A white highligher (I used 'Golden Lights' from Make Up Revolution which was a little too golden but it worked)
Mascara (Any will do)
Fake Lashes (f you want)
Dark red lipstick (I used 17's Stay Pout in 'Rule Breaker' which is amazing)
A small eyeshadow brush. (I used one from W7 which you can see in my 'Budget Brushes' post)

This look is really easy. I wish I had taken photos throughout but honestly, it's meant to look feathery and messy, so a little smudgi-ness just adds to the whole look.

Here goes- I promise you it doesn't use any complicated techniques, just a bit of blending and concentration. :)

1. Apply foundation/ white face paint allover the skin. I used my fingers and applied two coats to make sure it was super opaque and pale. Don't do concealer as the eye look is definitely going to produce a lot of fall out.


Do you love this sketch. I do.
So take your black pencil eyeliner and roughly sketch out this shape around your eye. The top line should run along the top of your eyebrow, and the bottom should be just slightly under your eyelid.

3.Continuning with your black pencil eyeliner, go ahead and fill in bits which are going to stay black. Fill in from your bottom line right up to your bottom eyelid. Also fill in the whole of your top eyelid and your eyebrows.  Thicken up the edge of the shape all the way around, but leave the outer edge of the shape thin and rough for the minute.
Still with the same eyeliner (maybe sharpen it at this point), create a design within your outer edges. I created points outwards from my eyelid, all heading towards my hairline. Fill them in with black pencil eyeliner. Your eyes should look something like this:

4. Take your white pencil eyeliner and fill in all of the gaps between the black lines with white. Because they are both pencil this might start looking slightly smudgey, but that's ok.

5. When everything is covered in black and white pencil eyeliner, have a look at the whole design and make sure you are happy with it before you go in with a more intense black eyeliner. When you are happy, take your black liquid liner and just intensify the black areas. Also use this to bring all the lines to a point on the outer edges, so it looks like feathers. Use the same technique around the inner corner and down the nose to create really pointed edges.

Your eyes should be looking a little something like this. If you have an intense white eyeshadow, go in to the white areas and intensify them

6. Line your waterline and tightline with black eyeliner, and apply mascara. Lashes are optional, but I think they really add to the intensity of the look.

7. Tidy up any fall out with some concealer or white face paint.

8.  To finish the face, take an ashy contour shade and hollow out the cheekbones, creating a harsh angle. Add highlight to the tops of the cheekbones.

9. For the lips, line with the black pencil eyeliner ( I know, stick with me), and then use a brush or the lipstick straight from the bullet to apply to the rest of the lip. Smudge the eyeliner into the lipstick to create a really intense outer edge and a dark red inner colour.

There you have it! A simple way to do the make up from Black Swan, you could even switch it up with a dark base and a white feathered eye which would look amazing.
Hope this was useful, thanks for reading,
 Lou x

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Face of the Day ~ 15 minute make- up

Everyone has those mornings when you have to get up and out really quickly, but you don't want to scare the world with your naked stressed face (I don't have the best skin, especially at the moment), so you need a make- up routine which is quick and failsafe, and this is mine. Enjoy :)

So that's my face up above- (I'm really not the best at selfies), and here is everything which is AWN MA FACE. It looks complicated, but it's really not. You might wonder why I have three concealers, but all will be explained...


(Top to bottom: Rimmel Foundation, Collection concealer, Maybelline Concealer, Collection cover stick- see below for more details)

So, I think it's really important for bad- skin days or mornings when you don't have much time, to take more time over skin care than make up. I started my morning with an ex-foliating pad from Nip and Fab, then the Effaclar Duo from Roche Posay to try and calm my skin down, and then some moisturiser. I used Olay's Anti Wrinkle 2 in 1 Instant Hydration and Radiant Glow which is lovely and fresh.
Once your skin is looking a bit more perky and nourished, I would normally go ahead and apply primer. I really recommend the Rimmel Lasting Perfection Primer if you need your make up to last the day. I didn't have time this morning (/ I forgot), so I just went right ahead with my foundation, which I applied with my fingers because I didn't have time to buff it in with a brush. I used Rimmel's Lasting Finish Nude in Porcelain, and just applied a thin layer all over. Ma face. This is a really nice foundation in general- very light and fresh looking- and I think it's best to go for a lighter coverage foundation if you don't have much time in the morning. I then went in with my Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in Fair over my blemishes and around my nose. I did use a brush for this, and buffed it in to make sure it was nice and even across my skin. I used the Maybelline Fit Me concealer in 15 on my eyelids and under my eyes to prime for eye make up and to conceal my under eye circles. (This is where I needed a third concealer because my under eye circles were serious- I went over with the Collection Cover Stick in 01 and pressed that in).
Boring bit over. 
Now, colour in your cheeks is something you need if you are in a rush, or you need to look more awake. I used my Make Up Revolution Blushing Heart in Peachy Pink Kisses which is so shimmery and illuminating that you don't need to faff around with a highlighter.


I kept the eyes super easy and super neutral.
First, I filled in my eyebrows with my Kiko eyeshadows, in 237 and 239 mixed together to get a good shade. It would definitely be better to use an eyebrow pencil because it is quicker, but I'm currently between eyebrow pencils because I can't find a good blonde one. I then brushed my brows through with the Natural Collection Clear Mascara which is such a cheap version of a brow gel, and it's really good. Brows done and onto eyes.
The star of the show has to be the Maybelline Colour Tattoo in Creamy Beige.I applied this allover the lid with my finger tip, just smudging it in to make sure it's even. It literally takes 10 seconds to get a layer of colour. This isn't what I would call beige, it's definitely slightly darker, but it's a great base colour. 
At this point, you have two options. Go darker, and find a dark shade to quickly smudge through the crease. OR (as i did), find a lighter shade to press over the centre of the lid to brighten the eye up. I used a Kiko eyeshadow in 236 which is a shimmery peachy/brown/nude. 
Liquid eyeliner is something you shouldn't attempt if you are in a rush, unless you can do it quickly, in which case, I bow down to your superiority. I just smudged a thin line of dark eyeshadow- I used Undone from the Naked 2 Basics palette, but you can use any dark brown or black colour- along the lash line to make the whole look more defined. 
Mascara is also hard to do quickly. I will normally do at least two coats of mascara because my lashes just don't hold up with just one coat, as you can see here. I used the 17 Va Va Voom Mascara in Black, which is the BEST mascara. You need to try it.


Having lipstick on immediately makes you look more put-together and a little fresher. Wack on some lipbalm if you really have no time, but if you have 5 seconds, go for a sheer wash of colour which is easy to apply and isn't too bold. I went for  a sheer peach lipstick from the Body Shop- Colour Crush in 315. Really easy and fresh looking, perfect for spring.

Powder is optional at  this point. I'm not a huge powder fan, I find it always makes me look cakey - and believe me I've tried applying it in every single way- but i actually did put a little bit of the Rimmel Stay Matte in Transparent on my under-eye concealer to make it stay- put.

So, I hope you enjoyed this fifteen minute make up for a really natural easy look.
Thanks for reading!
Lou x

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Top 5 Spring Nail Picks

Spring has definitely sprung here in the UK, so I've had a rummage through my nail varnish collection and picked my favourite spring shades :)

As you can see, they're all pretty light colours, because I think summer is about really bold but fresh, light shades. Summer is for bright oranges, corals, and neons to compliment your tan, and I've definitely worn out my autumn and winter dark reds and purples... so it's definitely time to change up and go for a fresher look. From top to bottom-

Barry M Nail Paint in Bright Pink (£2.99)
So this is just a classic bright, baby pink. So girly, so fresh and... yeah, spring-y. Looks really nice with all skin tones, but would definitely look amazing on darker skin tones. 

Maybelline Superstay 7 Days Gel Nail Colour in 130 Rose Poudre (£4.99)
This is the newest one to me out of this collection. I tend to stick to Barry M Nail polishes (can you tell?) because I know they're great and have an amazing selection of colours. I think I heard about this formula on youtube and so I had a look in Boots and picked up 2 colours. (The other colour is a dusty blue and is more winter-y.) This one is my new go-to nude shade. It looks quite browny in the swatch but its just a really basic pinky/brown nude, it almost blends in with my skin. The colour is amazing, and the brush on this polish is SO good. Really fat and flat, which makes applying so easy. However, I'm not sure YET if this lives up to the hype. The first time I wore it, it didn't stay chip-free for very long at ALL. (To be fair, none of my nail polishes seem to be staying on at the moment so I'm pretty sure it's a top coat/base coat issue...)

Barry M Nail Paint in Berry Icecream (£2.99)
I think this is my favourite nail polish of all time. It's stays so well, and is such a beautiful colour. It's a really light lilac, which is opaque but really subtle and pretty, especially for spring. If I had to recommend any of these, it would be this one. I get compliments all the time when I wear this, it's just a really nice shade which is just a little bit different.

17 Lasting Fix Nail Polish in Heartbeat
I actually got this in a sale in Boots for a pound, so I am not sure if it's available any more. It's an average formula but it's the colour that's amazing. Look for a really nice iced- light blue shade if you like the look of this one.  This shade looks so pretty, and an easier way to wear a bright white nail polish. Also looks amazing in the summer with a tan, or if you are lucky enough to have skin darker than paper.

Barry M Gelly High Shine Nail Paint in Blueberry (£3.99)
The gel formula from Barry M is really really nice, I would recommend checking it out if you haven't already. It's a bit thicker than the normal formula, so it takes longer to dry, but it leaves a really shiny thick colour on your nails. This colour is so lovely, it's a kind of bright powder-blue (?), bright but not too in-your-face. I think this is great for Spring or Summer, it looks so fresh, and is an easier way to wear a blue nail polish.

Thanks for reading!
Lou x 

Thursday, 5 March 2015

Budget Bronzers

Even ghost white girls like me want to bronze up a bit, and I've found its quite hard to find bronzers in general,  let alone cheap ones.
These four are my four favourites, all really affordable and really really good.

Firstly, here's the Body Shop Matte Bronzer in 01 light matte, and if you are pale and you need a bronzer or a contour powder, go and buy this right now. I think it's £12 but the Body Shop often do 40% off so its easy to pick it up for seven or eight pounds. To me, this is fairly expensive, but I can assure you, its worth the money. So silky, such a nice colour, pigmented but not too harsh so you can built it for a more cheek-bone-y (?) look. The packaging is also really nice, sturdy with a nice mirror which makes it really good for travel

This is a slightly darker matte bronzer, its from MUA and its Bronzer Shade 3. I think it's fairly universal as a bronzer shade, but I can get away with this even with my pale skin, so good for all skin tones. Really pigmented, and I'd use this for contour in the summer when I'm hopefully slightly more tanned. The picture above shows the body shop bronzer on the right and the MUA version on the left. It is slightly darker but if you're looking for a more budget option than the Body Shop bronzer, this MUA one is really good, and i think it's one or two pounds- amazing.

 Onto Shimmery Bronzers, and this is slightly different because its bronzing pearls, which I feel like aren't really a thing these days. The swatch makes it look quite orange,and I suppose it is, I'd use it if I wanted a shimmery golden bronze look. Really easy to build or use lightly, definitely good on all skin tones because of the buildability. This pot is from Avon and it was around £4- really affordable, and this has lasted me for YEARS.

If you're looking for a shimmery budget bronzer, this three tone 'Bronze, Shimmer, Highlight' from Revolution is definitely one to look at. I love this product so much. It's not glittery, it's a really nice shimmer. On a normal day, I'll sweep the middle tone over my cheeks or under my cheekbones, depending on the look I'm going for. If you had darker skin, the darker bronze colour is amazing too, I can only get away with this shade mixed with the middle shade but it's so lovely. The highlight is amazing, basically a light skin- coloured powder which is really nice mixed with the bronzers just to add glow, or on top of the cheekbones by itself for a really subtle sheen. Lovely. This was £4 and I think this is such a good product. It  feels very similar to the Body Shop bronzer in it's silkiness, and it is beautiful and buildable.

I hope this helped if you're looking for a bronzer to help you into Spring/ Summer!
Thanks for reading :)

Lou x

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Rimmel Lasting Finish 25 hr Nude | Review & Swatch

 I dedicated an earlier post to the lack of pale foundations on the highstreet. I mentioned in the post that Rimmel had added a 'Porcelain' shade to their Lasting Perfection and Wake me Up lines, and I have purchased one recently (mostly because it was on offer and only £4) hoping it was finally the right colour.

Firstly, this is the 25 hr Nude foundation, and I have to say I prefer this formula to the original Lasting Perfection foundation. They are both really dewy and fresh looking, but this Nude version is a lot lighter and... just thinner and more natural looking. Really really nice, but definitely not a full coverage foundation, so if you want something with a bit more coverage, go for the original Lasting Perfection.

The colour is really really good. It's very pale, as you can see here it's a pretty good match to my skin tone, and blends in so easily. 
Compared to my other foundations, I feel like it is very pink toned (weirdly, it looks very yellow toned in this swatch) , and I've been mixing it with a slightly more yellow- toned base, such as the Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum in 51 (Light Vanilla) or the Clinique Anti Blemish in 01 on bad skin days. 

This is the Bourjois healthy mix serum on the left and  the Rimmel Nude on the right- you can see here how pink toned it is compared to Bourjous. I definitely think I have more neutral undertones so I need to mix them both to get a better colour. 

It's a really nice foundation in general, and I would recommend it for any skin tones because its so light and blendable, and SO long lasting. I don't know about 25 hour, but definitely all day. Also, it almost looks better the longer you wear it which is weird.
The porcelain shade is really nice, if you're pale I would recommend picking it up, or having a look to see if it matches your skin colour.

Lou x

Winter Hand Hero

So it's winter and it's England, and my hands are very dry. 
If you're looking for a heavy- duty handcream to fix all the little dry patches between your fingers or on your knuckles- which I had, gross- this is the one. Big thank you to the guy in the Body Shop who helped me.
This is the Body Shop Hemp Hand Protector. I bought it on Saturday, it's Tuesday today and my dry bits, which were getting so bad I thought I had eczema, have almost completely healed already. It's really thick, and I wouldn't recommend putting it on your palms as it leaves behind a bit of an oily residue when you leave it places which don't need loads of your palms. Unless they do, in which case, go for it.
I rub it into the spaces between my fingers and onto my knuckles in the morning and before bed, and maybe once during the day. I swear, it's amazing. Unlike other handcreams, it doesn't seem to come off when I wash my hands during the day, and sticks around, protecting your hands- hence the name I suppose- all day.
If you're looking for a serious hand cream for this ever lasting winter, I would have a look at this one. This tube was £5 but there's a 40% off code at the moment which made it really affordable. Plus you only need a tiny bit so it's going to last For. Ever.

Lou x

Monday, 2 March 2015

My Kiko Palette

*the shadow three from the right should be 220 not 240

So this is my Kiko eyeshadow collection. Kiko is the nearest thing  I can afford which is similar to creating my own MAC palette. Kiko eyeshadows are £5.40 each (compared to MAC's £13 or something ridiculous), and recently have been on an offer making them £2.80 each. Amazing. In the summer I picked three up, you can probably tell from the palette view which ones from how destroyed they are. So I originally had a three- palette and I enjoyed the eyeshadows so much that when I saw them on offer again I grabbed four more, and then another one. These eight are actually sitting in a 24- place palette. I know, I got really excited. The reason is, the 9 palette was only £1.50 cheaper than the 24 palette. So, ya know. I'll eventually fill it up I'm sure.

So here are my eight eyeshadows. Two I use for eyebrows as well, and the rest are a sort of wintery collection of pinky purples. I've lent towards purply colours because, firstly, I have a lot of browny eyeshadows, and secondly, its winter. Oh, and thirdly I got told purple looks good on green eyes, which I have, so I'm trying to use them more.

In the swatches photo, these two are the colours on the far left. I have no idea how they have come out looking so brown, but I found the palette so hard to photograph too. They look their truest in the top photo of the whole palette. These are 293 and 233 in that order. They are both deep cranberry, 293 is slightly darker. It's really hard to talk about how lovely they are when the picture is so bad, but have a look if you are in a Kiko store.

This is 236 and 239. They are two of the originals, and these photos are so much better. 236 is a beautiful champagne shimmer which is so lovely as a base colour, and also works well as a shimmery highlighter. 239 I use as a brow colour, but it is very so slightly too dark since my hair got lighter. But, I have to say I can tell you that these last ALL DAY in the brows, and on the lids too, no smudging or budging. Also a really good ashy taupe crease shade.

This is 218 and 237. 218 is my least favourite of all of my shades. It's basically a base colour, cream with sparkle, but the colour pay off is really poor on this one, meaning its super sheer. This could be dusted over matte eyeshadows to make them shimmery, but its not very pigmented compared to the others. 237 is my new brow shade, and is basically a lighter version of 239, and matches my brows perfectly. I mix in a little of 239 for a stronger brow if I fancy it, otherwise this is the perfect everyday replacement for the shade 'Frisk' in the Naked 2 basics palette which I do NOT want to use everyday and use up.

This purple shadow is 246, and its a cooler- toned purple with a lot of shimmer. It's so pretty, and works really nicely with the more cranberry shades, as well as the lighter shades. The last one is 220 (labelled 240 in the top photo) and it's my first more Spring/ summer shade for this palette. It's a bit darker than it looks here, its a really pretty peachy colour with gold shimmer and its soo lovely, perfect for warmer weather, and I know this will look great with a tan. 

Kiko eyeshadows are definitely worth checking out, so cheap, and the chance to design your own palette which is amazing. The pans are actually really big too, so I was considering having a look for a couple of blusher/ contour/ highlighter colours too.
I've got another 16 slots to fill up and I can't wait!

Thanks for reading, hope this was useful!
Lou x