The festive season has always been my favourite for makeup because it's acceptable to rock a bold lip and a bit of glitter. I've compiled 5 of my must-have makeup products for the party season, appropriate for whether you want to go heavy on the eyes or wear a bright red lip! There really is something for every one here and this is definitely what I shall be using over this Christmas!
The first item I couldn't not mention is NARS' Sheer Glow foundation. A classic staple in so many makeup collections and rightly so. Christmas is the time for a bit of luxury and you could squeeze yours in via this - you won't regret it! I've been saving this for special occasions as I'm so in love with it. It applies like a dream, lasts amazingly and gives off a lovely, radiant, my-skin-but-better glow. Again for the base is NARS' Laguna bronzer. After my love-hate relationship with this, I'm back to loving it. A gorgeous bronzer that gives a nice, natural bronzed cheek.
When it comes to eyes, I'll be using The Body Shop 4 Step Smokey Eye* palette in Smokey Brown. I mentioned this a while back on my blog and said that I loved it and it's still true to this day. It gives a gorgeous golden brown smokey look, but if you can't get your hands on this (it's pretty hard to track down!), I'd recommend the Naked palette for the golden/brown shades.
Lip-wise I have two options: the Rimmel lip liner in Black Tulips or the Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet in Hot Pepper. Black Tulips has become my latest obessions as wearing it on it's own gives a gorgeous, matte lip shade that isn't too drying. Hot Pepper is more Christmassy of the two with it's bright red colour but the formulation of this is second to none. Not to mention the lasting power of both of these products - you're able to pig-out on all of the food you'd like without smearing lipstick all over your face. Result!
What will you be wearing this Christmas - bold eye or bright lip?
When it comes to blush there's always a constant battle on which I prefer - cream or powder. Cream blushes are something that I've only delved into recently as I've been Team Powder ever since I can remember, but every time I use creams I love them more and more. As with most things there's good and bad points about both but I think I've finally made up my mind as to which I prefer.
Let's discuss powders first. They're compact, readily available and amazingly pigmented - what more could you ask for? There is actually something that powders don't score the points on and that's how they never quite look natural, especially when used on my dry skin. Powders tend to cling to dry patches and highlight the fact that you're wearing blush. It's not all bad - they're super easy to blend out and give a nice glow to the face. My powder of choice is Sleek's Blush in Rose Gold.
When it comes to creams, it's all about the natural look. Cream blushes are very up-and-coming in the makeup world as of recently and rightly so - they're amazing for a natural, fresh look. The only downside to this is that from all of the cream blushes I've ever tried, they're not as pigmented as powders but they're build able. That's not much of a problem if you're going natural - a little is all you need. My cream blush of choice is Revlon's Pinched.
I think when it comes to blush, I'm definitely Team Cream. What about you?
One of my not-so-many talents is being able to shop until my feet feel like they're about to fall off. It's a quality many girls have and are known for using, but sometimes I take it to the next level - even if I'm just popping in and out of a shop, there's always time to find the nearest Boots and have a quick snoop around. I'm a girl. It's what we do. It's also not uncommon for me to come away with a huge bag of beauty bits, rushing home to play with all of my new finds and remembering what I bought as there's usually so much. I thought I'd share a few of the items I've picked up recently as these hauls tend to go down quite well, so here we are!
The first item was one that I bought for my mum as she's been looking for a new foundation. I chose the Maybelline Better Skin as I've never tried a foundation from Maybelline before and I'm interested to see how it fairs out. The shade range wasn't the best & I haven't tried it as of yet but by the sounds of things, it's a full coverage foundation with a nice consistency. I also had a moment of madness when I realised I couldn't live without a Gold eyeliner, so I picked up the NYC Liquid Liner in Liquid Gold. I don't even know how to explain that. Let's move on.
The Rimmel Brow This Way seemed like a dupe for Benefit's Brow Zings and you know me, I can't pass up on a good dupe. I can't comment on the dupe-ability (cool word, huh?) as I haven't tried Brow Zings but it looks pretty similar to me. So far, so good - I love the waxy end and the brushes that come with it aren't flimsy at all. A new mascara was on my shopping list this week as my beloved Wonderfull mascara has been used up so I stuck with Rimmel and opted for the Kate mascara. It has a different wand than Wonderfull and it takes a bit of work to build up the lashes but once you've got the hang of it, it's a decent mascara.
Two of my favourite products that I got my hands on lately are the Rimmel lip liner in Black Tulip and the Clinique Chubby Stick in Mega Melon. I use the liner to slightly over draw my lips - not to the size of Jay-Z but just to even out the plumpness - and then the Chubby Stick to make it glossy and put some moisture back into my lips.
What makeup products have you picked up recently?
This is how I feel today and how I've felt for the past week. Exhausted. I always find that December well and truly tires me out, so much so that it's only the 7th and I feel drained - it must be all of the Christmas shopping I've been doing! This is mainly the reason why I haven't blogged recently as I wanted to take a break from my schedule and have some time-off. Now, I've re-charged my blogging batteries and I'm coming back at you with lots more posts.
Today's post is nothing fancy, beauty or fashion related, it's just a chat. I feel like sometimes with all of the beauty posts I try and put up here, it's sometimes difficult to have a chat with you and get to know you. This week I spent my days watching Prison Break (mainly because of Wentworth Miller but it's an amazing show!) and lots of re-adjusting the Christmas tree because Meenie thinks it's acceptable to pull the baubles off whilst she's climbing it. The troubles of having a cat, hey? I don't mind, especially when we have our nightly routine of her purring away on my lap whilst I watch I'm A Celebrity. She's great during the Winter time - she's a hot water bottle that never gets cold!
What have you been doing this week?
One thing that comes with reading endless amounts of beauty posts from the past 3 years comes a long list of hyped products. I have no self-control when it comes to makeup and as soon as somebody tells me that they love a product, I have to try it myself. This can have two issues: a) you buy it & don't like it, or b) the hype wears off after a few weeks and people start to admit that it wasn't actually that good or even worth the hype. Jumping on the bandwagon gives you a heck of a makeup collection and I often look at the products I hyped about and think "how are they doing now?". So I gave them a go.
The first ever hyped-up product that I bought was the Maybelline Colour Tattoo in Rose Gold. When I originally reviewed them here, I loved them. Since these came out early last year it seems like almost every brand now has their own pot of cream eyeshadows. I have to admit though, I'm no longer much of a fan of these. It's so funny how your interpretation and opinion of a product changes once you get older & try others! The Touche Eclat highlighting pen by YSL was a product that came into the blogger hype earlier this year and when I reviewed it at the time, I didn't understand the hype. 8 months later & I still can't say I'm head over heels for it! I would rather use the Collection concealer which is much cheaper, gives my cheeks more of a highlight & covers my dark circles!
Lots of lip products were hyped-up last year, especially when the first drugstore launch of the famous Chubby Sticks came to Boots. The Bourjois Colorboost are still, one year later, one of my favourite lip products. They're so glossy and hydrating with such a gorgeous pay-off - these still deserve hype now! Revlon also had their 10 minutes of fame with the launch of their Lip Butters. I loved these to begin with, yet never seem to hear much of them anymore! Kate Moss' lipstick in 107 was one of the most memorable hyped-up products for my whole (almost 2 years!) of blogging. Needless to say, it's still as amazing as ever. Every time the #bbloggers Twitter chats focus on Autumnal makeup, this always comes out on top.
MAC's Mineralise Skin Finish in Soft & Gentle is always one of the most recommended when you ask for a champagne-coloured highlighter. I remember everyone going mad for this last September and I fell in love with it at the time. It's not a product I look to everyday and I mainly stick to using this in Winter because it's too golden for my skin to look decent with in Winter!
What products have you bought due to the hype surrounding them?
The weeks over Christmas and New Year have always been my favourite for many reasons, but the most exciting one is due to all of the new makeup looks I can do! I've always found the holiday season to be the best for the exciting makeup looks and that's what I'm aiming to put out on my YouTube channel this month. The first look I made was a look perfect for a Christmas party, sporting a bold red Christmassy lip and neutral eyes.
The real stars of the show for this look were the lip products, for which I used the Bourjois Rouge Edition Velvet in Hot Pepper and the Revlon Colorburst Lacquer Balm in Provocateur. Both of these have been two of my favourite red lip products for such a long time that I needed to share them with you, via a tutorial! I'm loving uploading lately and have a few videos in the pipeline, ranging from a foundation routine to a dramatic smokey eye. I hope you enjoy!
If you'd like to see this video, click here. If you like my videos it'd mean a great deal to me if you could subscribe! If not, that's fine too :)
Raspberry nails are something that I tend to gravitate all-year round, not necessarily just in the Autumn/Winter time. Ever since I've been young enough to paint my nails, they've been some sort of of berry shade (except for that time where I went through a phase of wearing only black nails - it didn't last long). Over the years I've collected my fair share of berry/burgundy shades and I thought it'd be a great start to this little 'Top 5' series that is kicking off today.
First up (and my favourite of the bunch) is Rimmel's Black Cherries. I bought this last Summer and has been one of my go-to nail shades ever since. This is more on the purple side as opposed to red, but I love how it looks slightly different every time I wear it. The formula is great, it doesn't chip and it has a wide brush, all I could ever ask for in a nail polish! I also have the Rimmel Metal Rush in Purple Reign which is similar to Black Cherries but with a holographic finish to it.
The Models Own nail polish in Garnet is on the redder side of raspberry shades but again, it's an amazing polish. Models Own were one of the first nail polish brands I ever bought and I always find myself coming back to them because the formulas are amazing for the price. I also find myself picking up Essie's Shearling Darling more and more now after mentioning that I wasn't too keen when I first picked it up. This shade is very similar to Barry M's Raspberry, a classic in my collection. If I remember correctly, this was my very first nail polish that I bought back when I was about 11 years old. Fast-forward 5 years and two bottles later, I'm still loving it!
What's your favourite nail polish?
When it comes to bedroom decor or anything to do with Christmas, I'm all over it like a rash. It's gradually become more and more of a little obsession of mine to go to IKEA and have a nosey round, looking for inspiration and ideas that I can do to spruce up my room. I'm a perfectionist and get bored very easily so the basic features of my bedroom are white, and soft furnishings are red to get a bit of the Christmas spirit. The one thing I love about having white pieces is how easy they are to change. If I was to replace the red items in my room with another colour, the room would feel brand new.
On a recent trip to IKEA with my mum, I was instantly drawn to the reds and greys. I'm not a huge lover of colour (hence why my bedroom is mainly white!) but I think by adding a few red items such as candles, pillows and blankets, it makes the room have much more personality. One of the favourite things I picked up was this grey, red & white blanket that is one of the coziest blankets I have. Beneath that I lay my cream blanket, also from IKEA to pull out the creams in the pillows.
I also put a string of fairy lights around my DIY-ed headboard with warm lighting, again, to make it cosier for when I do my midnight blog-reading sprees. Because the lights were too long and I didn't like the look of them being double-wrapped, I put the extra lights in a glass bowl beside my bed. On my bedside table I also have my Liberty floral notebook & a vase of white flowers that I accessorized with a little red ribbon. I also put this ribbon on the twisty-thing of my blinds, my wardrobe handles and the little candle dish where I display some of my jewelry.
I decided that it was finally time to put the tree up - even though we're still 10 days off the 1st of December, I couldn't wait! Do you usually Christmas-ify your bedroom?
Today's post is yet another updating you on what's been happening over on my YouTube channel. This Wednesday's video is all about my favourites High-End Makeup Items so if you'd like to see that, featuring some items from NARS, Urban Decay, MAC and Chanel, just click here and you'll be taken over to my channel. If you have any video suggestions for me, please leave them in the comments below! I got a pretty little notebook a few days ago soley for YouTube-y things so I'd love to read some of your ideas. :)
I hope you enjoy the video!
It's only recently dawned on me that out of the hundreds of eyeshadows I own, I could realistically get away with just one palette to use for the rest of my life. Urban Decay's Naked palette is all you will ever need (and more) in an everyday eye shadow palette and the only one I've been turning to in recent weeks. It contains a total of 12 eye shadows; 9 shimmery and three matte but if you're not keen on shimmery shadows, fear not! The three matte shades are all you'll need when it comes to the most basic look to the most intricate smokey eye - a white highlight shade, a muted beige and my favourite shade from the palette, Buck, a very warm mid-brown that looks amazing when blending out bolder colours.
The shadows from Urban Decay aren't comparable to any others I know and they beat MAC's infamous shadows by a long stretch! Unlike MAC, they're extremely pigmented and super easy to blend. The only downside? The amount of fall-out that you get with these, yet that's expected with bold & pigmented shadows. The fall out, however, is easy to clean up by simply applying concealer afterwards or applying eye makeup first, cleaning with remover and applying foundation.
Of course, we all know that the Naked line has been so successful that there's been another two palettes added but this is my favourite by far. Naked 2 would be for you if matte shades are important and Naked 3 contains rosier, pinker shades. I'm sure you've seen a million and one reviews on this over the past few years and if you've been debating on whether to buy it or not, this is your nudge - go for it! It's one of the best palettes out there!
I think it's typical of pretty much every girl to wish for long, strong and healthy nails that can be painted nicely, don't snap and don't have the problem when you bite them too short. Unfortunately not many girls can get that with natural nails. It's also a problem when the salons charge £25 for falsies and once you chose the colour, you're stuck with it. That's where DIY falsies come in.
Whilst I was in Boots I came across the Nailene stick on nails. When I was around 10 years old, me and my best friend would always come home from shopping trips with endless supplies of Claire's stick-on nails but the only problem was they never lasted long, so my gorgeously already-painted, long falsies were in the bin after I'd been in the bath. Nailene are an amazing false nail brand and it's the brand that my salon use to apply acrylics. Guess what? For 200 nails (over 20 different nail applications!), you pay just £8.50. Essentially, you get 200 nail applications for what should cost you around £400 in the salon. Crazy right? It gets even better - the nails are applied with the same glue as acrylics meaning they're not peeling off anywhere and you can paint them as many times as you like (even removing and re-applying colour onto the same set) without them chipping.
You can get two shapes - mine, Ovals or Squares. You aren't commited to length or shape as they're just there to give you a guide, meaning you can cut and file them to suit you. Plus, there are some amazing deals on VoucherCloud to help you have a bit of money. Have you ever tried DIY falsies?
Look at me - I'm on a roll with my videos lately! This week's video installment is telling you all about My Favourite Drugstore Makeup Items. I've been collecting makeup for years yet it only occured to me that I hadn't rounded up my favourite makeup items from Boots, ever! A few of the items featured are; Revlon Photoready Foundation and the amazing Bourjous Rouge Edition Velvets in Ole Flamingo!, Hot Pepper and Peach Club. Also, if you have any video suggestions for me please leave them in the comments below! I'll be uploading every Wednesday and Sunday from now on and although I have almost a month's worth pre-recorded, I'd love your suggestions!
I'll also be doing a high-end version of this next Wednesday so if you'd like to see that, I'd love if you could subscribe to my channel!
Lips are, without a doubt, one of my favourite things to play around with colour-wise in the whole of makeup. I find it so much more interesting than everything else, from eyes and face to nails and skincare. I love how it completely transforms a look & I also love how coloured lipsticks really compliment my glasses - one of the very few bonuses about being a specs wearer! Recently I've been really enjoying lighter pink lips, something that is really different for me. I don't think that pinks suit me in general but there's a few that I can get away with, so I've been taking full advantage of my new finds!
The first one I've been loving is the Bourjois Rouge Coco Shine in Peach Club. Since buying Hot Pepper and Ole Flamingo! back a few months ago, I've been desperate to get my hands on another shade from the range. If you're looking for a matte, bold liquid lipstick, this is where you should be looking! The formula is impeccable - easy to apply, not drying whatsoever and let's not even discuss the staying power. Let's just say that I once fell asleep and after waking up of a full night's sleep whilst tossing & turning and rubbing the heck out of my face, it was still there. Amazing.
I also have been loving a combination lately - the Revlon matte balm in Elusive and the Revlon Papaya lip gloss. I'm not a fan of these individually but together they make a great team. I love this that much that I put it in last month's favourites! I love the shade underneath but am not a fan of the finish and it's the opposite with the lip gloss. I love wearing this duo! Lastly I have the Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Boy. I won't ramble too much about this because you're probably sick to death of me rambling on about it but it's stunning. To see the full review of this, just click here.
What lip products have you been loving lately?
It's not until I look back on my YouTube channel that I realized I hadn't uploaded a video since February. Where has the time gone? In that space of time I sat my exams, got my results, hit my blog's 2nd birthday and now it's almost Christmas! I made the decision to delete all of my old videos and start afresh. So, this is the first look on my new channel! I recreated one of my favourite looks of all time - a golden, simple eye (using the Naked palette) and a bold, berry lip. To watch this tutorial, click here. :)
I hope you enjoy my new videos and if you'd like, you can click through here to subscribe to my channel.
I'm sure I've mentioned that when I was in school, I dreaded French - that and P.E, but what girl really likes running, getting sweaty & pulling their hair from their lip gloss every 3 minutes anyway? I've always wanted to learn another language from a very young age but hated learning it in a school environment. Much like blogging I find that if I force myself to do it, I won't enjoy it. That's what happened in school. To pass my exam and get the qualification, it meant I needed to do at least two writing and two speaking assessments with my French teacher. Being painfully shy and embarrassed to try and make sure that I was speaking 'confidently', it was one of the worst experiences of my life.
When I left school and became home schooled it became one of my favourite subjects. Even though I needed to do work on time in order for me to pass my exam, I could still take it at my pace and wasn't rushed into keeping up-to-date with homeworks and the ability of the rest of the class. Duolingo became my best friend right up until my exam and I was completely obsessed with the thing, prioritizing French over any other subject because I thought it was so fun. I passed my exam with a B and haven't done anything French-related since. It's only recently that I've been starting to pick it back up again and this time around I'm hoping to learn how to speak more than, "Hi, I'm Elise, I'm sixteen and have a pet cat". Also, I know how to order tea and croissants, ask where the toilet it & describe my brother's hair colour. Oh the things you learn at school!
I'm hoping to introduce a new feature over here on the blog, documenting how I get on with what I like to call 'Franglais'. This is where I'm handing over to you - do you speak another language? How easy did you find it to learn?
I have a real addiction to liners, and since writing my post about The Low-Down of Liners I've somehow accumulated a whole tray of them in my makeup storage. The latest to my collection is the Maybelline Eye Studio Gel liner, something I picked up after my mum was looking for a brown gel liner that's a cheaper alternative to the Bobbi Brown one. The first thing that surprised me with this liner is the consistency; much more creamier and wetter than the gel liner from the likes of Bobbi Brown.
I actually prefer the wetter consistency as opposed to the thick gels which seem to dry up easily. This liner makes a great base for an intense smokey eye to get the blackest of the black eye makeup look. It's also much easier to create a nice, defined line & also clean up where you've made a mistake with a little cotton bud. This liner also comes with a brush which I haven't tried because I love the Real Techniques Silicone Liner brush with any gel liner. The brush doesn't necessarily look the best, I think the shape of it would be too big to create a nice thin line.
I've also heard that this is an amazing dupe for MAC's Fluidline Gel liner yet just a fraction of the price. It's smudge-proof & waterproof and once it's swatched on the back of your hand, it's going nowhere. The one gripe I have with this product is the colour. I'm either a soft brown or bold black liner kind of girl and this falls somewhere in between. When you first apply it, it looks amazing - a bold, intense black line but then fades to an off-black which I tend to re-line once it's dry to darken it.
Do you ever write a word that many times that it starts to lose it's meaning? That's what's happening with November at the minute. After spelling out the word with some gold sticky letters, I started to question whether I'd actually even spelt it right mid-photograph. It's one of my favourite seasons for a few reasons - Bonfire night (although I'm quite terrified of how Meenie will react to fireworks all night long!), my 2-year blog anniversary month and only one month to Christmas! I always feel like when Halloween is over, it's acceptable to talk about Christmas & do lots of present shopping. Socially, it probably isn't OK but I like to think it is! I went to a Halloween party last night with my dad & brother and dressed as a half-burnt person. It doesn't sound very exciting but it took so much effort - almost 2 hours sat at my desk, applying latex and fake blood to half of my face! If you wanted to see the result, it's on my Instagram. When I came home my mum told me that we'd had a grand total of 0 trick-or-treaters, so I jumped in bed and eat the sweets for myself.
Happy late-Halloween and happy November!
Another month, another favourites post. Another month that we all complain how fast it's gone but look on the bright side - it's another month closer to Christmas! Can you believe it's only 54 days? I still can't believe how fast this year has gone in general, it only feels like yesterday that I was writing out my New Years resolutions! I always find that the transitional months are the best for makeup and it's also when I tend to splurge a little. This month saw lots of new makeup goodies and I've loved trying them out - so much so that I have a few for this month's favourites post!
The first product I've fallen in love with this month is the Revlon Photoready foundation. I have an upcoming review of this but it's honestly such a refreshing change for me to use this. I tend to stick to the same things when it comes to foundations - matte, thick and full coverage. I bought this on a whim and had no clue what the formulation or the effect was like. Quite risky, hey? Anyway it worked for me. This is a lightweight, dewy foundation that's so easy to apply and makes my skin look much healthier and glowy. I've also been loving MAC's Sumptuous Olive after reminding myself that I actually owned it when I wrote up my MAC eyeshadow collection. This is stunning for green eyes but isn't very pigmented. To pack more colour onto my lids I just wet the brush slightly and the green & gold then really shows on your eyes.
This favourites post may as well be titles "Revlon favourites with a MAC product chucked in" but Revlon are killing it for me at the moment! I also picked up the Revlon cream blush in Pinched for a bargain £3 and again, I couldn't be happier with it. It's so natural looking and gives me that flushed glow which I love to wear in the Winter time. A favourite lip look for this month is a mixture of the Revlon Matte Balm in Elusive topped with the Revlon Lip Gloss in Papaya. This is a summery kind of shade but I love to switch my makeup up by wearing it not according to the season.
Whenever someone asks me to recommend a decently priced drugstore blush, Sleek is always the brand that pops up in my head. They cost only £5 and for that price you get a lovely packaged, pigmented blush in gorgeous shades, although you have to grab them once you see them - they're always sold out! They come in a compact little black packaging and as you can see, no space is wasted inside. You'd usually get a naff brush that comes with these kinds of blushes; one that you usually throw out and then get annoyed at how little product you actually get.
Rose Gold is one of my favourite blushes of all time & is also a well-known dupe for NARS' Orgasm blush. No other blush is coveted in the drugstore like this is and it's hard to get your hands on, but trust me - you won't regret hunting it down. It's such a pigmented blush that would look lovely all year round due to the rosy warm tones. This blush would really last you a long time as a little really does go a long way. The golden shimmers in it makes it look gorgeous when paired with a neutral, winged eye and dewy skin. You really can't go wrong with Sleek!
What is your favourite drugstore blush?
Autumn is my favourite season for many reasons but the one that always comes to mind first is Halloween. We rarely decorate the house to celebrate it, much to my dismay, because my mum is very keen on maintaining her show-home, monochrome standards. I love Halloween and all that it entails so I was determined to sneak a bit of orange into the house somehow. After a session on Pinterest that somehow ended being 3 hours long (I don't know how I do it), I came across a few pumpkin vases. I love the way that they look so I decided to make one for myself!
The vase itself is actually so easy to make, all you need is a bunch of flowers and a pumpkin. I opted for yellow, white and orange flowers because I thought they looked more seasonal & fitting with the shade of pumpkin. I also added a small witch that came with another house plant that I bought but you can find some accessories from the Halloween section in any big supermarket and add that to the flowers.
Simply, you just have to cut the top of the pumpkin and scoop the inside bits out, just as you would do if you were carving shapes into it. Then, chop the bottoms of the flowers so that they fit within the pumpkin and arrange them how you like. Once you're done, just mix the sachet of flower food that comes with the flowers with a bit of water and pour it into the inside of the pumpkin. This makes sure that your flowers don't wilt and stay healthy! There's so many variations and alterations you could do with this - you could decorate the pumpkin with permanent markers, make shapes with washi tape or even tie a ribbon around it. Have fun with it!
There's just something about fresh flowers that I can't get enough of and I've vowed that once I have my room completely finished, I'll try and have a vase of fresh flowers every week (much like the promise that I'd wear nail polish everyday when I left school. Over a year later and still going strong - I feel naked without it!). These are photos of some flowers that my brother and I bought for our mum's birthday & have been sitting in my photography album for months, but never had an excuse to appear on the blog. I also think there's a perfectly good excuse to buy more this week - my brother's ill. Even though he probably won't appreciate bright pink and white flowers I think that it just needs to be done.
Since the tiny re-design and re-branding of my blog I feel so motivated and have so many new post ideas to show you. I've been doing that much work that my whole 'watch page' on YouTube is full of Destiny's Child songs. It wouldn't be fun to do so much hard work without singing Independent Woman as loud as you can, after all. Just in case I'm missing anything, I thought I'd ask you if there's anything you'd like to see over here. Days in the life, specific reviews, recipes, snippets of my 12 year old diary? Let me know below!
MAC lipsticks are something that I feel like I've been collecting for years and I love the satisfaction of seeing them all nicely co-ordinated in my makeup storage. If you're yet to purchase a lipstick from MAC, go for it! Although they have been slowly increasing in price over the past few years - does anyone remember when they were £11 - £13?! - they're worth every penny to me! Of course I have my favourites and I have done a post dedicated to each lipstick but I though that it'd be nice to do a round-up of them all.
I'll start from nudes to bolder lip colours and the first one I have is Creme D'Nude. This lipstick was actually my second MAC lipstick and I'm personally not a huge fan. I wouldn't recommend this for people with a similar skin tone as me (ghostly pale!) because this is more on the beigy side of nudes which tends to look a bit concealer-lip like. The pinker sister of Creme D'Nude is Creme Cup which I prefer so much more. This suits my skin much better and for days when I'm slightly more tanned, the two mixed together look lovely. My favourite ever nude lipstick is Patisserie and I expressed my love for this in a post I wrote last month. I'd heard so many people talk about this and decided that I needed to try it out and I'm still as in love with it as ever. It's very moisturizing and has a lovely gloss finish, something that I love in a nude lipstick.
Moving on to coloured lipsticks I have Ravishing, a lipstick that I loved last year but am not too keen on now. It looks lovely on paler skin in the Winter for something a bit unusual but I find it a bit difficult to work with. Even though it is a Creemsheen formula it tends to show up all of the texture on my lips - not good when it's Winter time and lip balm isn't cutting it! Lovelorn is another shade I have which I would describe as a more opaque version of Creme Cup. I don't reach for this as much as the other shades and I have no idea why because I'm surprised by how much I like it when I wear it.
Now we're onto the main event - bold lips. If I'm looking for a bold lip colour, I always look to MAC as they have almost every shade you could possibly think of and they're not mega expensive. Russian Red, which I only just recently rediscovered after learning it was hiding under my bed for 3 months, is my all-time favourite red lipstick that I think looks amazing in the Winter on my skin tone. It's majorly blue-toned which gives the teeth-whitening illusion and it's matte. What more could a girl want from a red lip? If you're a real lover of the bold lips and are looking for something a bit more on the purple side, Rebel will be your best bet. When I bought this last year I wore it non-stop and it's already being cracked out for this Winter - I love it!
Today's post is slightly different for a few reasons - it's skincare and it's also a guest post, from my mum! I've been asking her to write a post on here for over a year now & she's finally agreed to it, so here we are! She'll be doing a little review on the Alpha-H Liquid Gold collection which she's been using for the past few months so I figured it'd be good to get another person to give their opinion on this blog. Without further ado, here's her review!
I love this little collection from Alpha H. The liquid gold is really good, the only slight problem is actually remembering to use it. You are supposed to gently swipe the Liquid Gold over your face every other evening (and not to use a moisturiser over the top for the best effect). Well.... it does give you a slight tingle and your face does feel a bit tight. Quite strange not to use a evening moisturiser as you would think they isn't good for your skin!! However, when you wake in the morning, your skin does feel and look amazing. Pores and diminished and little imperfections seen less visible. You must use a daytime moisturiser the following day with an SPF to protect your skin. Overall, I would highly recommend this.
The exfoliator is also really good, probably one of the best I have tried. It's one of those exfoliators that is quite 'grainey' but does work. Your skin does feel like glass after just one use. Again, highly recommended. The SPF 50 daytime moisturiser is perfect to wear under your foundation. The high SPF factor is really important when you're my age!!! It sinks in really quick with no greasy film that other SPF moisturisers leave on your skin. I bought this kit from QVC and as it was what is called a 'Today's Special Value'. The price was really good value. If you would to try this yourself, just ring QVC.
Can you please leave a comment and let me know what you think of my very, very first blog post!!! Cheerio for now! x
Today's post is a spontaneous one & one that I decided to post as a contrast from the weather that I'm writing in this afternoon. We're apparently having the reminents of the hurricane in Bermuda, meaning the bins have been flown half way down the street & the house feels like it's being battered by rain. It's that windy I'm half expecting myself and Meenie to fly to Munchkinland to meet Glinda the Witch and the Tinman. I'm being serious. These photos were taken on my trip to Cornwall at the end of Summer for a week of camping with my cousins, brother and dad. Considering I was the only girl I had a really good time and took some great photos for my scrapbook!
These were taken at my favourite place in the whole entire world, Lusty Glaze beach in Newquay. If you're fit enough to walk down (and back up) 125 narrow steps then you'll end up on a private beach with a small restaurant and a live band. If you're going, it's best to go at sunset. It's stunning! I'm so happy with how these photos came out. My favourite moment of the whole trip took place here when we were all in the sea and a huge wave came in. Because I wasn't as far out as the boys (I didn't want to get my dress wet... Priorities), I didn't get thrown over but the wave, which was about twice the height of my dad, threw the rest over and when I looked behind me to see them they'd all gone under. A few seconds later they all popped up & I couldn't stop laughing. It's definitely one of those "I wish I'd have gotten that on camera for you've been framed!" moments!
Can you believe that this little monkey is one year old today?! Although we haven't had her from today (we got her on December 5th), it's so strange to think this little baby that we've gotten so used to is only one year old, today. It's very cliche/cat-mum like of me to say that she's come so far and it's true - when we first set eyes on her, she was locked in a tiny cage with 4 other kittens in a pet shop. I couldn't bare to leave her there as she was the smallest by far and getting trodden on by the eldest in the cage. The shop itself was very dodgy; she didn't come with any info regarding her diet, history or even vet appointments, just her date of birth and a tonne of fleas.
I've always been a lover of animals but cats were never my thing until I saw her. We originally got her when I left school which was a pretty traumatic time for me and it's amazing how much happiness she's brought me (minus the refusing to come home after a panic attack & forty minutes after initially shouting her when she first went exploring!) and she's been the best homeschooling buddy/partner-in-crime I could ever have asked for. I could now never imagine life without her! As a little birthday celebration, I've put together some of the photos I took from when we first got her beneath a photo of her now. I never realized how tiny she was until I looked back - she literally fit into the palm of my hand!
Cream blushers are something that I'm only just trying to get to grips with. I'd always steered clear in fear of my face representing a children's doll, with bright pink, unblended cheeks - not my kinda thing. However, when I was in TKMaxx (I'm seriously so obsessed with the beauty section in there at the moment. Nails Inc for £4? It's a revelation!) I spotted this little cream blush from Revlon at only £3. Revlon are fastly becoming one of my favourite drugstore brands so I picked it up hoping that I could work with it somehow.
If you have the same worries as me regarding cream blushes, fear not! I slapped it on whilst waiting for my mum to try on some clothes in the changing rooms and I was so surprised with the results and how easy it was to achieve. It made my skin look much perkier & radiant. I got the shade 'Pinched' which is a lovely shimmery coral/rose shade; the kinds of shades that I love to wear in the Winter time. The formula is quite wet, not like a thick cream consistency which I would have expected. It isn't the most pigmented but I'm glad of that - it's buildable, subtle and easy to apply if you only like a small flush of colour. I also love how you can just apply it with your fingers, unlike many other powder blushes - perfect for if you're travelling or on the go!
Last year if you'd have told me that I'd be wearing a bold lip to nip to the supermarket, I'd have laughed in your face. Up until I bought this lipstick, me and bold lips rarely mixed. This was the first MAC lipstick I ever bought, meaning I threw myself in the deep end and it would always have a special place in my heart. I promised myself that I'd get my money's worth - spending £15 on a lipstick to a 14 year old non-working girl is a lot of money! To build myself up to wearing this out of the house and actually getting use out of it, I'd wear it during the day inside and get used to looking in a mirror rocking a bright red lip - it worked! I now feel so comfortable wearing this and is my go-to lipstick for when I want a little something extra.
It's no surprise to me that Russian Red is one of MAC's best selling products. It seems really thick when you first apply it but once it's on, it stays putt and doesn't need re-applying for at least 4-5 hours. I apply this with the Real Techniques Fine Liner brush to get the precision around my lips - a bold lip doesn't quite have the same effect if it's sloppily applied! This is also such an amazing lip colour for making your teeth appear much lighter because it's a very blue-toned red. Also, every time I wear this out I get complimented on it & people ask what shade it is. That must be saying something!
What's your favourite red lipstick?
I know what you're thinking - it's Autumn now and I'm writing about Essie's Summer Collection. There's a method in my madness; a) I found them in a set for just £6 and b) they could actually pass as Autumnal colours. Whilst I was having a browse in TKMaxx with my dad this weekend I couldn't pass on having a look at what beauty items they had in. I've always see bloggers saying that there's some amazing offers on in there, especially from brands like Nails Inc, Clarins and Elizabeth Arden. I couldn't pass on this set & actually think they're perfect transitional shades from Summer to Autumn.
My favourite out of the three has to be Ruffles & Feathers, a gorgeous emerald green that doesn't remind me of any other polish in my collection. When I first tried Essie's nail polish I thought that the formula was a bit difficult to work with it but now that I've gotten used to it, I love it! Roarrrrange is one that I have on my nails as we speak - a lovely pumpkin orange shade. Orange is a shade that I love to wear in the Autumn time because it reminds me of one of my favourite times of the year... Halloween! Haute in the Heat is the only shade I'm not too mithered about in this collection as I have many others that are similar to this. It is a gorgeous shade, nonetheless!
If there's one thing that Sundays are made for, it's this - fresh air, nature and photography. Behind the constant lust of a new makeup product and the bright lights of the latest clothing store, I'm a country girl at heart and love nothing better than fresh-faced October morning walks. I've always felt more at home in wellies and a rain coat as opposed to dresses & high heels and I whole-heartedly put that down to the sheer amount of times my brother & I mithered my gran to take us for walks (if you're reading this, sorry grandma!).
I couldn't even begin to describe the amount of photos that I've taken when we're on these walks, especially now that we're making an effort to explore at least once a week! This week's excursion was to Etherow park and we're attempting to go there ever Autumn. Last year we visited here for the first time towards the end of November when the leaves were falling and I blogged about it here. This year was much busier than the last - probably because last year we were the only ones brave enough to attempt walking around in the freezing cold! We also came across this dreamy house, in the middle of nowhere & promised my mum that I'd live there one day. Who wouldn't love a gorgeous house surrounded by only hills and lakes? I would!
I still remember the first time I bought a MAC palette, and the satisfaction of splurging the £90 that I'd saved up for months to give it a decent start. That was only the end of last year and my love affair with MAC shadows still continues. I try to pick up a shadow every time I go shopping - they're only £10 after all - and so I'm slowly but surely building up a nice little collection. We're still not at the level of makeup collecting that Shan is, but a girl can wish... And collect more! The beauty of eyeshadows is that they're so versatile, from using them to contour & highlight, to combing them and getting an amazingly unexpected smokey eye.
Nylon is one of my favourite eye shadows that I own because it's so versatile. I use this as a highlight for my inner corner, brow bone and even my cheeks because it gives a subtle glow. I tend to find MAC's Soft and Gentle MSF a bit glittery as the particles in it are too big/champagne-like so this is a great alternative.
Naked Lunch is a shadow that I barely use and is very similar to Sin from the original Naked palette. I usually use Sin over Naked Lunch because the quality of UD eyeshadows are impeccable and so pigmented. I find Naked Lunch a little hard to blend.
Omega is another of my all-time favourite eyeshadows as it's so versatile. I use this to contour my face on a fluffy brush and also use as a transition shade in my crease. If you're pale skinned and struggle with contouring, try this! It's a genius!
I don't tend to get a lot of use from Sumptuous Olive because I don't see it as an everyday colour when I look at my palette. I do, however, like using this to do a lovely olive smokey eye (which looks amazing on blue eyes!) but don't use it near enough as I should do.
Woodwinked is a shade that I bought when I heard so many bloggers rave about it in one of the #bbloggers Twitter chats. I really never use this shadow either because it's not pigmented enough for me but it does look stunning in the pan!
Cranberry is a beautiful burgundy shade that makes my green eyes pop when I use it in a smokey eye look with the Kate Moss 107 lipstick. A gorgeous Autumnal shade!
Another of my all-time favourites is Espresso. If you're beginning a MAC palette or already have one, this is the one I'd recommend to everyone. The simple, mid-toned brown that's also incredible for filling in brows & adding definition to the crease.
I bought Silver Ring on a whim for my mum after she was looking for a silver-grey shade and typical mum, she's never used it. I've not even attempted to use this yet because it's one of the newest in my collection but I think this would look lovely with a nude lip.
Smut is an eyeshadow that I thought I'd love, but haven't used nearly enough of it as I expected. Again, I find this one quite hard to blend and doesn't really pick up much product when I put the brush into it. It is a lovely shade though!
Shadow Lady is another of my newest in the collection and one that I enjoy using. I'm a lover of smokey eyes and again, the purple tones in it really bring out green eyes. This one is quite similar to Smut but slightly purpler.
Personally, I think Carbon should be a staple in everybody's MAC palette or just makeup collection in general. The typical matte black that I use time and time again for an intense makeup look and it never fails to impress.
And they are all of my MAC shadows! I currently have Call Me Bubbles, Soft Brown and Swiss Chocolate on my wishlist. What's your favourite MAC eye shadow?
One thing that I'm always wanting to brush up on is my baking skills. The odds of me being the only one in my family that's terrible in the kitchen are pretty high - my brother is an aspiring chef, my gran's a professional cook & my dad makes a mean egg & chips. Me? I can just about make cupcakes! Whilst my mum & I were in ASDA the other day I came across a book with 1,000 cupcake, brownie and dessert recipies. Is it just me that thinks cooking sweet things is sooooo much more enjoyable than savory? The end tasting part is always the best!
So, to make 12 gorgeous cinnamon cupcakes, you will need:- 110g self-raising flower
- 110 caster sugar
- 110g unsalted butter
- 30g unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 eggs
- 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon
For the topping you will need:
- 110g unsalted butter
- 225g icing sugar
- 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees (fan) or gas mark 5 & combine all of the cake ingredients in a bowl. I actually made this without scales and just guessed by looking at it. When I was making this, the mixture was so thick that I had to add a bit of water to to it to thinnen it slightly before putting it into cases. I used quite small cupcake cases that I bought in a set of three and so the mixture actually made enough for about 14 small cakes! Once they've been in the oven for 15-20 minutes, they should be done! Now it's time to make the icing.
Butter cream is one of my favourite things to make and to do so, you will need to soften the butter and slowly sieve the icing sugar into it. I originally tried to pipe the icing through a food bag because I don't have piping bags but it failed miserably, so I spread it out over the cake using the back of a spoon. Then I broke up a small block of dark chocolate and put it on the top. Done! The recipe originally said to sprinkle it with white chocolate and to add cinnamon into the icing but I thought that'd be way too much. I'll be the first to admit that they don't look the best but practice makes perfect, hey?
If you make these cakes, make sure to show them to me on Twitter - I'd love to know what you think of them!
Being a beauty-obsessed blogger comes with a permanent, never ending wishlist. The wishlist has become even worse now that Sephora have opened their gates to the UK and we can finally get our little mitts on all of the products we've longed for so long. I'm still yet to make my first Sephora order - the pressure is too much & I don't want to forget anything & regret it later! - but here's what's on my shopping list for when I do decided to take the leap.
The first product on my Sephora wishlist is the Sephora Cream Lip Stain in Always Red. I've heard so many people rave about this (mainly Amelia!) and as big a fan of a red lip I am, I'm surprised I haven't gotten my hands on it yet. Apparently, these have the perfect matte formula - an amazing pay-off for the price. The fall collection of OCC's Lip Tars are new to the ever-growing list, within Lament and Manhunter looking like perfect Autumnal lip shades. What would a beauty blogger be without a tonne of lipsticks coming out of her ears? I have no idea!
Brows are also a feature that require a lot of time, energy and work. Therefore we need to try a lot of products to see what works best; brows make or break a face, after all! The first thing on the list is the Make Up For Ever Aqua Brow. One of my favourite beauty vloggers, Chloe Morello, mentioned that she used this a few months back and they made her brows look incredible. A product that's been on my wishlist ever since I bought the Brow Wiz is Anastasia's Dip Brow Pomade. I'm new to the whole gel liner-like consistency for a brow product so am so intrigued to see how it fairs out. I told you, brows are an important thing!
For the face, I've been itching to try the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer. Who doesn't have skin-envy of Lauren Curtis? (And figure, teeth and fashion envy, but that's beside the point). This has become one of her staple makeup items and every time I see her apply it, I love the results. The perfect amount of coverage, highlight and non-creaseness, I need to have it!
What's currently on your wishlist?