Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Review - The Beauty Blender + cleaning fluid = AMAZE

Beauty Blender. Yesterday. 

Hello! So, despite me never posting this blog ANYWHERE or sharing it or telling anyone about it. It seems I have an awful lot of readers and I have to admit, i'm shocked and very very flattered. 

The Beauty Blender is an oldie, and oft written about, but for such a ubiquitous product in the internet world, I barely know any woman that owns or knows about its talents. Weird non?

Now, there is one point I have to make, this guy is quite pricey, he retails at £16 for on solitary sponge, and £26 for the above kit, which I kindly had purchased for me, which includes the special anti bacterial wash you need to clean him up after usage. 

The Beauty Blender ltd ed white kit with solid cleanser and carrier

Lets see what the press blurb says....

"the ultimate make up sponge applicator. Beautyblender has been created to leave you with a professional finish and a flawless complexion. Forget your fingers or sharp-edged triangular sponges, these application methods waste make up and can leave visible streaks."

I have read a million foundation application products claim that they will do just what the beauty blender says, and I have used everything except an airbrush, in the hope they'll do what they claim. Here's the news, The Beauty Blender does EVERYTHING IT CLAIMS.

Literally. Every single thing.

Here's how to use it - run it under a tap, squeeze out the excess. Put your foundation on the back of your hand. Pick a small amount up with the sponge, and bounce over entire face until you have the finish you desire. Wait for foundation to dry down. MARVEL AT COMPLEXION.

It does what no other tool can, you can easily build coverage over red areas, nip in around the nose, fill in pores, then follow up with concealer under the eyes. If you're feeling fruity, you can also press in your powder with it.

I have to impress upon you, over and over, that this is a MUST HAVE product. MUST. HAVE.

It does give an airbrushed finish, it does make the product easy to distribute, it's easy to keep clean and it's just the most perfect thing I own. Is that a recommendation? Do I sound like a loon? Yeah...probably.

If you want to dive in to easy foundation application, then you can purchase the beauty blender, in all its various formats, direct from the manufacturer website HERE or from Cult beauty HERE 

Sunday, 17 February 2013

Review: Fudge Urban Raspberry & Vanilla Mousse Strong Hold

Fudge Urban Raspberry & Vanilla Mousse

Hiya! So I have rubbish hair, which I have mentioned before. It's thin, it's damaged beyond belief due to my bleaching and blue/pink gradient, and it lies flat, and if I get at all hot it's a pathetic, lifeless, limp nightmare. I'm always looking for new and vaguely affordable products to fight my follicle faults. 

I spied this on offer at Superdrug three days ago for the bumper price of £1.23, so I couldn't stop myself from giving it a go. It's part of the Fudge Urban range, which is a diffusion range courtesy of Fudge, who i've been a fan of for many many years, which is available exclusively in Superdrug

I've tested this on three consecutive nights that have involved extremes of heat, sweat, rain and a hat, and I can vouch for the fact that it works. My hair feels bulkier, the volume hasn't dropped despite sleeping on it and the added heat protection is a total bonus, as my hair is really damaged and weak. The smell is lovely too, which, without being a total rubbish girl, does make a difference to me. 

If you'd like to purchase this, it's only available on offer instore at Superdrug at the moment, so get a wiggle on and get some before they hike the price up! 

Sunday, 10 February 2013

Sleek Make up to release ltd edition Aqua collection for spring 2013

Sleek Make Up Aqua Spring Collection 2013

I bloody LOVE Sleek. They're brilliant. They really are. I have so so many high end shadows and blushes, but I return to their products again and again for day looks, and my night looks. Something for every occasion and for a bargainous price! 

Drawing on tropical and aquatic influences, Sleek has hit on a winner here. I am deeply in lust with the strong pink and purple shades in the i-Divine palette, which will retail at £7.99, and contains 12 shades, nine of which are going to be shimmers, 3 mattes. The blush, a beautiful peachy pink, will be £4.49 and the mini nail varnishes, Deep Waves, retailing at £9.99, which features four shades. Tropic, Pink Mirage, Deep Coral and Cote d’Azur. 

Aqua will be available on 13 March in Superdrug stores nationwide and online at Sleek Cosmetics.

Review - Maybelline Super Stay 24 hr Bold Matte - Shade 830 Prune


Well, whoopsie, yesterday when I posted THIS review, I totally forgot to add all the shades I'd lovingly purchased in the hope they'd make dreams come real. Sorry for that ladies (and gents, potentially)

So here's a little catch up. If you want a review on the formula, again, go to the previous review of the Maybelline Super Stay 24 Hour Bold Matte's. This is just to show you what this guy looks like.

Maybelline Super Stay 24 Hour Bold Matte in 830 Prune

The product has been swatched with two swipes, still wet.

As you will noticed, there is a little pink smear on my arm. Well, that is yesterdays swatch. Bear in mind I have had a bath, wiped my arm with make up wipes AND scrubbed with an exfoliating sponge. I am thinking that perhaps I was too quick to judge on their lasting power, and maybe the extent of the dryness of my lips had an effect on the quick fading. 

Bold Matte, Prune, dried down. 

Again, like the other three Bold Matte liquid lipsticks, this product took forever to dry down. At least six minutes of waiting, which most people can't be bothered with if you've got something to do with your life! However, the colour of this is STUNNING. A rich purple leaning pink, with zero sparkle or dimension, just flat as matte intends. I love the colour, and I love it on, I just wish I could get to grips with making it last and not flake off. 

If you want to take part in the Maybelline Bold Matte Party, please visit your nearest Boots or Superdrug store, where they are currently stocked before they pop up online. 

Saturday, 9 February 2013

Review - Maybelline Super Stay 24 Hour Bold Matte (swatches etc)

Maybelline Super Stay 24 Hour Bold Matte
Shades (top to bottom) 815 (fire coral), 800 (glamour pink) and 810 (peach cocktail)

With lipstick, there are a few specifics that i'm all about. Firstly I like them bold (after banning myself from always relying on Nars Tonkin because I feared the lipstick smear and fade situation), I like them long lasting and non fade, and I like them MATTE. Really really MATTE. When I saw these launching I knew that I had to get my hands on them. So, what do I think? It should be a marriage made in heaven....

Top to bottom - 810 Peach Cocktail, 800 Glamour Pink, 815 Fire Coral. 

So this is them swatched before dry down. As you can see, the colours are vivid, but i'm afraid this took two swipes, as one seemed to be rather translucent. I decided to take another picture after dry down...

Top to bottom same as previous picture.

So, dry down. All very well and good, but this dry down took TEN MINUTES. Thats a pretty long amount of time to wait when you're wanting to do your lippy and leave the house and not smear it all over your face. I tried again just with one layer but the result was too translucent to look right, it definitely needs that building, otherwise it looks patchy. 

So how does it last? Well, it does last longer than your regular lipsticks of course. 24 hours though? Nope, not on your ruddy nelly! I would say you get about three hours before it starts patching off. You can drink, eat and kiss, and it won't smear all over your glass or kissing partner, but it will flake off after a while. 

Do I like it? Well, despite the moans above, I actually do!? In a market that lacks matte options in the extreme, despite it having been a trend for about three years now, I'm willing to put up with the downsides and work with this product because after the work, the colours and beautiful, and you can get more wear than your average lippy, so it's not really the end of the world if your desire for these colours outweighs your need for them to live up to all their pie in the sky claims. 

If you want to go bold, and matte, get yourself to your nearest Boots or Superdrug and pick these up for £8.99. They are due online in the next two weeks too, but if you can't wait, you'll need to wiggle on down to the stores in person. 

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Eyelure official website FINALLY launches.

Just a quickie for you lash enthusiasts. Eyelure has got round to not only launching a comprehensive website full of facts on application, history, beautiful images, and a guiding hand for newbies. It's all I could have hoped for and more! 

To top it off, there is a shop, and they are stocking my FAVOURITE lashes that I thought had previously been discontinued. PRAISE BE!!!

Hed Kandi Disco Heaven Lashes. My favourite!!!

So check out the Eyelure website here and go lash crazy! 

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Review - Decleor Ylang Ylang Purifying Oil and Aroma Purete Shine Control Oxygenating Fluid

Dear ladies and y'know, gentlemen, etc. May I present to you my answer to a long miserable battle with my skin.

First up. Let me tell you about my skin. It's blotchy, uneven, red, sensitive, super oily in the t zone and I have crater like pores. I have, for many years, battled to keep on my make up throughout a day, and it got to the point that I was covered in a virtual rash of tiny whiteheads. I did not enjoy it. Ok, it's not a terrible cross to bear, my poor brother had acne so bad his face at one point was just a a weeping, scaly infected mess. I know i'm not unlucky in comparison to some, but my face isn't a great one as it is, so when I wear make up, I like it to improve things for the time I need it to.

Skincare isn't something I have ever understood, but I started researching and trying recommendations, and frankly, my skin has never looked better in the last ten years. Step forward Decleor!

Decleor Ylang Ylang Purifying Oil. Sitting pretty. 

So, you may or may not have, depending on how much of a a beauty obsessive you are, heard of the recent surge of interest and usage in oils on skin. I have used the Shu Uemura balancing cleansing oil for a couple of years, courtesy of a venue in central london i've relations with getting tons of it for free, which was nice, but the idea of moisturising my face with oil, after so many years of searching for 'oil free' products. It sounded stupidity.

It's not though. It's genius.

Basically what I discovered about my oily skin was that if I fed it oil, it stopped producing oil. The reason it produces oil is that it's thirsty, but the plugged up with sebum pores weren't getting moisture, because they were plugged up with too much oil production (are you following this? I hope so), so the moisture I was trying to give it wasn't soaking in properly, but if I decided to use a water based foundation, my skin would drink up all the moisture in it out of desperation, leaving me patchy AND oily. What a disaster.

No more my friends. No more. This post isn't my skin routine, I can cover that later, but what I will say is that if you cleanse the crap out of those pores with a hot cloth cleanser, my recent preference has been to use Soap and Glory Peaches and Clean 4 in 1 Deep Cleansing Milk which is AWESOME. I'll give it a lovely review asap. Then after my face is squeaky clean and my pores declogged, I apply the Decleor oil and smooth it over my skin. This is what Decleor has to say about it.....

"A naturally powered Super Serum containing both Essential Oils and Plant Oils specially formulated for the daily care of oily and combination skin. The Essential Oils purify the epidermis, reducing excess sebum and closing the pores."

And it does exactly what it says. 

 Following it, if for daywear, with the Aroma Purete Shine Control Oxygenating Fluid....

Decleor Aroma Purete Shine Control Oxygenating Fluid. 

Now. I would review these two separately, but frankly, they need each other. These two are meant to be together and together, they create the perfect results. 

Basically the oil soaks into your face almost immediately, nourishing and cleansing your skin, and tricking it into thinking it's got enough oil produced already, so no need to create more, whilst helping clear out your tricky pores. Once you smooth this over the oil, it mattifies, but doesn't cause any dryness. Your skin feels hydrated, comfortable, and your pores look refined. This is what Decleor have to say....

"The Oxygenating Complex within the Shine Control Oxygenating Fluid helps skin to breathe by increasing the consumption of oxygen, therefore improving cellular activity and helping combat lifeless skin. Skin is permanently matified yet hydrated, the texture of the skin is refined and the complexion fresh."

I have tried many many mattifying moisturisers, and this is completely different to any experience i've had before. Unlike others, where my skin would appear dull, and burn slightly around the nose where the mattifying agents were going into overdrive, this just feels fresh and comfortable. My skin feels, well, normal, and that feeling lasts all day! 

These two products have worked like a dream for me. An absolute dream. I'd love to be able to try the Aroma Night Ylang Ylang - Purifying Night Balm as well to complete the treatment set, but these products are pricey even at a discounted price, so right now i'm making do with applying the oil at night before a hydrating night cream. The only mornings I wake up dissatisfied with my skin is when I haven't bothered cleansing and shoved the oil on a lazy drunken face. Then the oil cannot soak in and do it's work and just sits. Thats no ones fault but my own though! 

If you want the cure to your oily woes too, you can purchase both products through the official Decleor website with the moisturiser retailing at £24 and the oil retailing at £44 for 15ml.

However, if you are willing to wait, the bargainous Cheap Smells occasionally stocks both for a pretty cheap price. It's just a case of hoping they'll get some in as the stock does tend to sell very quickly. 

I shall be reviewing and explaining my cleansing routine too. Hope this helps someone out there with the same skin woes as I! 

DJV Beautinizer Volume Lash update

Recently I gave a first impressions review on the DJV Beautinizer Volume Lash mascara that was rocking my tiny world. Well, I just wanted to give you this little update with my thoughts on this mascara.

All you girls who suffer with straight, short, miserable lashes that want some real results, I would not recommend ANY OTHER MASCARA. I'm serious. The Cult Beauty review on the site says...

"Name a potential mascara fault and this genius product solves it. If this mascara was a man, Cult Beauty would marry it!"

And every word of this, I back up, nearly. It's not a clump free miracle as 'such' but frankly, a bit of buggering about with a lash comb for these kind of results, who cares!?

Okay, so here, is a bullet point way to apply this bad boy.

  1. Apply to clean dry lashes, a lash primer thoroughly, my personal preference is Diorshow Maximiser (available for a discounted price at Escentual right now £19.55), which not only plumps the lashes superficially, but treats and nourishes them.

2. Then, working on one eye at a time, apply the beautinizer in a zig zag motion to build product up at the roots, whilst tilting your head back and looking down at the mirror. This method gives you maximum space to encourage a curl, whilst also giving you the ability to splay the lashes out, inner to outer corner. 

3. Next, using a lash comb, carefully comb through the lashes. My personal preference of lash combs, and i've tried a great many, are either the Real Techniques Lash/Brow Groomer (currently on offer at a 15% discount at HQ Hair), or my personal favourite, the recently release Mac duo lash comb/brow brush, available for £5 from Mac Cosmetics online. I love this comb more than any other due to it's thicker more spacious comb, which means you can achieve a proper wide eyed sixties look. It's brilliant!

4. Repeat the above steps, two more times if you need to. Up to you really!

5. If there's still not enough curl for you, and here's why I love this mascara, you can then use a lash curler, like Shu Uemura lash curler (£20 from House of Fraser), which really does live up to all its hype, on the roots of the lashes, and that curl will stay ALL DAY. Believe me! If your curl does eventually drop, you can just use the curlers then, with no damage and no stickiness. Amazing. 

As an aside, if you want to go PROPER mental with the length and this isn't crazy enough, you can use some lengthening fibres such as Divaderme Lash Extender fibres, which come in black. They're great btw, so I might just do a separate review. I've been using them for about two years and I have yet to find a better alternative! 

So ladies, go forth, have AMAZING lashes. It makes you feel right lovely!