Monday, 31 August 2009

Why have I never heard of this before????

So it's my third post of the day...but there's a VERY good reason for this...I HAD to do this post because after watching some footage on YouTube of Kandee The MakeUp Artists NY Glaminars, I have discovered a genius palette that is customisable. It's called a Z-Palette and the whole base of it is magnetic so all you need to do is pop your eyeshadow/blush pans etc out of their casing and pop them straight into the palette! Easy!
There's two sizes, a larger one and a smaller travel size one, and the website also sells magnetic tabs in case your eyeshadow pans weren't designed to be magnetic. The best thing of all is it has a clear lid so you can see exactly what's inside...I have to get some pronto! You can get them at www.zpalette.com. The larger one is $20.00 (approx £13.50) and the smaller one is $14.00 (approx £8.60). Kandee had said that they are very sturdy too.

Maybe I have been totally out of the loop and you guys already know about this wonder product but I just thought I'd let you know in case you were unaware. I was going to finally depot my growing collection of MAC eyeshadows into a MAC palette HOWEVER...now I am definitely going to get some of these instead...I just think they're more practical.

Wedding Hair

Pretty much most of my waking moments are currently taken up by thinking about all the little details for my and Chris' wedding next August. I have sorted out alot of the big stuff like the venue, the band/DJ and the dress so my attention has now gone back to what I'm going to do with my hair/makeup on the big day. I have decided on a loose, tousled chignon for the ceremony like the following pics...
Like the pics, I want nice wavy wisps of hair framing my face coz I don't like any of the severe up do's that take about a whole can of hairspray to set them in place. I want to change my hair for the reception though, wearing it down, wavy and to one side to show off my strapless gown...something a bit like this...This pic was from a FOTD I did a while back. Obviously my hair would be professionally done so it would look alot tidier than my DIY job above.

I found some makeup inspiration in an unlikely place when I spotted the front cover of the Autumn/Winter Next Catalogue at my mum and dad's house. The makeuo look is just gorgeous and I would be so chuffed if I could achieve something like this for my wedding...


All the golden/brown/bronze tones in this pic are just so gorgeous but it's not too over the top...love it! I will have to try and look into this photo and try and find out who did the makeup and what they used...that task could be near impossible though!

High End/Low End

Hey everyone,

I wanted to start a new tag to introduce people to my favourite products from high end AND low end (pharmacy/drugstore) brands. By deeming them as low end, I am by no means saying that they are lower quality or inferior in any way. On the contrary, I am going to list 15 product categories and the list my favourite high end and low end choices for these categories. This will maybe give people ideas on what is worth buying in the future. So let's get started...

Foundation: Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation/Revlon Colourstay
Concealer: Benefit Erase Paste/GOSH Touch Up
Powder: MAC MSF Natural/ Maybelline Dream Matte Pressed Powder
Bronzer: Lancome Tropiques Mineral Bronzer/Barry M Natural Dazzle
Highlighter: Benefit High Beam/Bourjois Blanc Diaphane eyeshadow
Blush: Korres Powder Blush/Maybelline Dream Mousse Blush
Eyeliner: MAC Penultimate Liquid Liner/Loreal Super Liner
Mascara: YSL Faux Cils/Loreal Voluminous
Eyeshadow: MAC powder eyeshadows or Paint Pots/Bourjois Shimmering Liquid Eyeshadow
Nail Polish: O.P.I./Rimmel
Shampoo: Sebastian Penettrait Strengthening Shampoo/Aussie Long & Luscious
Conditioner: Sebastian Penettrait Strengthening Cond/Herbal Essences Smooth & Shine Cond
Intensive Hair Treatment: Aveda Damage Repair Intensive/Herbal Essences Hello Hydration
Styling: Lancome Hair Sensation Nutrition Intense Treatment/Tresemme 24 Hour Body Mousse

I tag anyone else who wants to share their high/low end products!

Sunday, 30 August 2009

Superdrug Spree

While I was in town yesterday shopping with my other half, I popped into Superdrug claiming I was just going to "have a look around for a minute" so off he toddled to the menswear dept in a nearby shop and off I skipped to the makeup stands. Hurrah!
The first thing that caught my eye was a Loreal Studio Secrets stand promoting the Smoothing Resurfacing Primer and since I have seen countless YouTube vids and posts on this, I picked one up to try (it was on offer for £9.99).
I have to say that I was really disappointed by the tiny size of this tub compared to the price, it's a bit stingy! You can see how small it is from my pic where I'm holding it (the jar is 15ml). I know a little goes a long way but surely a 30ml jar would have been better to be comparable to other mid-end primers???

On first look, this primer is a marshmallow pink colour and has the weirdest texture...kind of feels spongey when you first touch it but then it melts into the skin and feel silky smooth...love that. I applid it yesterday before my foundation and I have to say that it really created a smooth, silky base that made my makeup go on like a dream. So all the ravings about this product are true. My makeup looked even and any shine on my T-Zone was eliminated by this product. I love how light it feels on the skin too. So overall, I'm loving this primer, I just wish they had been a bit more generous with the amount of product in the jar.

Next up, I made a bee line for the GOSH stand as I have wanted to try the Extreme Art LIners for ages. I picked out the steel grey and bronze colours (no.25 & 24). As I had been advised before, they liquid liners are very thick compared to what I'm used to using but I quickly learnt how to make this work for me. I used the steel grey colour last night and created a really great flicked out effect that was a bit more subtle than my normal black. I have to say that this liner definitely lasts the distance! It didn't budge AT ALL and that really impressed me as some liquid liners can transfer down onto your lower lashline in the inner corners of the eye. I'm looking forward to using the bronze one! I will definitely go back for more of these babies!

Next up I went over to the Bourjois stand and spied a liquid eyeshadow that I have wanted to try for a while. It's a more gold version of Beige Mettalique and I love it! The colour is gorgeous and just that little bit more gold. I love these eyeshadows so much, they last for ages and they are fantastic on their own or as a base...I wish they made more shades coz I would buy them all!

Saturday, 29 August 2009

ELF Brushes + Mineral Eyeshadows

I ordered some Elf brushes and two mineral eyeshadows yesterday morning and they arrived today...I'm impressed by that! From left to right in the pic below, I got the Studio Powder Brush, Studio Fan Brush, Studio Small Smudge Brush and Blending Brush from the normal selection of ELF brushes on the website. I had previously bought the eyeshadow brush and was so impressed by the quality of it that I went back for more.

I used all four of these brushes this morning and they certainly didn't disappoint. The Studio Powder Brush is PERFECT for contouring the face, it's soft to the touch but firm enough to do the job. The Fan Brush is also great quality and is perfect for applying highlighter powder to the cheekbones or just tidying up any fallout after applying powder eyeshadow. I have been after a precision smudge brush for a while to soften eyeliner and apply darker eyeshadows to the outer corner of my eyes without ending up with it all over the place. This small brush is perfect for that. The Blending brush is great too, it's very soft and not packed too tightly. These brushes are just great value for money, the Studio brushes being £3.50 and the normal brushes £1.50. I highly recommend them if you want to build up your brush collection quickly but can't afford MAC Brushes. After watching a YouTube vid and seeing a post by Lollipop26 on the ELF Mineral Eyeshadow in Natural, I had to check it out. I also got another shade called Mysterious.

As you can see from the swatch below, albeit a rubbish photo, the Natural shade is a gorgeous golden beige neutral colour. It would be perfect as a base colour for just about any look and it has a lovely sheen. The pigmentation is lush and it's stunning when you apply it wet. I was disappointed by the Mysterious shade though as it's very matte and the pigmentation isn't fantastic to be honest. It's supposed to be a lavender grey shade but it just looked dull to me. I think these eyeshadows could be a bit hit and miss and it doesn't help that the swatches on the website don't really reflect the true colour of the product. However, I'm not too upset as these were also very cheap so it won't break the bank if you get a couple of duds.


Have you guys tried any other shades of these eyeshadows and if so, what did you think of them?

Friday, 28 August 2009

Ebay, I Salute You

I often go through phases of Ebaying coz there's some great bargains to be found on there! I was browsing the other day and came across three dresses that were brand new with the tags still on them and a fraction of the shop price so obviously I couldn't resist! (I got them all for a total of £26.59 including postage and packaging!).

I must have a thing about ruffles/frills at the moment coz they all have a touch of that detail. The first one is from Oasis and I have always loved this Electric Blue colour that has been around for a while. Now that I have been working out at the gym for quite some time, I think my arms are worth showing off now so the one shoulder design is perfect for that.
The second one is also from Oasis and has a similar frill design down the front. I have the PERFECT Steve Madden shoes to go with this dress! I like the fact that you could dress this down a bit with leggings or glam it up with sky high heels. As you can tell by now, I love bright colours and this purple number is no exception.
The third dress I got is from Monsoon (part of the fusion line) and I love the halterneck details with the ruffles. It's a lovely pink colour that will be perfect for my colouring. I love empire waists coz they put all the emphasis on the smallest part of your waist. I think this one is a bit more casual and would look great with some flat gladiator sandals, sunnies and the famous Lauren Conrad side hair braid.
I should be receiving these dresses next week and I can't wait!
Have you guys spied any bargains on Ebay lately?



Thursday, 27 August 2009

5 Little Tiparoonies

Over the last couple of weeks I have come across quite a few tips from different sources and now that I use them myself, I thought I would share 5 of them with you:
  • If you want bee-stung lips but you don't want to fork out for an expensive lip plumper, you can get the same effect by applying some lipbalm/vaseline onto your lips then gently exfoliating your lips with a muslin cloth (I use my Liz Earle one) or an old toothbrush. This creates a slightly swollen effect that lasts for a few hours and it also prepares your lips for lipstick by making them super smooth. I just lightly dab concealer on my lips afterwards to neutralise the redness and apply my lippy as normal.
  • If, like me, you have deep set eyes and often get dark circles under them (not through lack of sleep, just genetics!), then this may be a good alternative to a dark smoky eye for you. By using a pale gold eyeshadow all over the lid and then a grey or pewter eyeliner, smudged along the lashline, it creates a lovely subtle smokey eye without looking too heavy. The two colours also really compliment blue eyes.
  • If you need to fill in your brows like I do, it's best to use a darker shade from the inner corner to the arch and then a lighter one for the outer parts. This makes your brows taper off nicely and looks more natural.
  • This is a really really basic tip but when I have said it to some people they kinda go "oooh I never thought of that" so I'll go ahead and just tell you. To get a really seamless natural look after applying my foundation, I ALWAYS blend the foundation from under my jawline into my neck with a scented body lotion (the same as the perfume I wear). This way, you never get tide-marks on your jawline and you smell nice as the scented body lotion helps to prolong your perfume.
  • I picked up a couple of amazing tips from Natalie a.k.a. NattyNGeorge...when she gets a breakout of spots, she uses a face mask made from crushed Aspirin tablets and a small amount of water to make a paste. She applied that and leaves for 15-20 mins and then rinses off. The before and after pics were amazing. This really does work! She also did a post on her tanning routine and that she never applies fake tan to her hands and feet. Instead she applies a gradual tanner to give a more natural look and avoid any weird tell tale fake tan patches. Genius!

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Let me count the ways I love thee....

So, I know I said I had decided on my wedding dress but last week I tried one on that blew that out of the water! The one I'm getting is called Candice and it's by Blue by Enzoani. As soon as I put it on, I knew I had to get it...it's quite flamboyant with it's teardrop beading and detail but it's so me...check it out here http://www.brides.com/fashion/dresses/gallery/wedding_dresses/vendor/designer/enzoani/detail/166481?offset=5

I love the Italian flair it has and the colour I tried on was Ivory but because it's made from French taffetta, it had a iridescent sheen to it so it changed colour slightly in the light...it's just exquisite. Check out the dress in the catwalk show on YouTube here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1I1tvYQb5oc&feature=channel_page

My dress is 5 mins and 20 seconds into the video and it shows you the beautiful Ivory/Pale Gold colour that I'm getting. I will be ordering it this week and I'm sooooo excited!!!

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Nail Colour I'm loving this week


Just a quick post to show some love for this nail colour that I was sent recently, it's called Hot Pink by Models Own. I think Hot Pink is slightly off as a name because the colour, to me, is more of a bright Coral than a hot pink. Whatever the colour is called, this nail polish is divine! It goes on smoothly, you only need one coat for full on colour, there's no streaking and it dries really fast...what more could you want??? I think this colour is pure summer!
This is the first product I have ever tried from Models Own and I'm really impressed with it.
What's your fave nail polish at the mo?

Monday, 24 August 2009

Men & Makeup

After reading an article in a newspaper last week and seeing Hele Says post on how she managed to persuade her brother, Bart, to test out some guy makeup...it left me wondering how many girls would be comfortable with their boyfriends wearing makeup?

I'm always playing around with my makeup goodies and taking ages to get ready for nights out but I really don't think I would be entirely comfortable if Chris started to join in on this process! I like a guy to look after himself and look presentable but I think things are maybe starting to go a step too far! Chris is very old school and he would never dream of using fake tan or painting his nails. It took ages to convince him to use the Liz Earle for men Cleanse & Polish (he sometimes gets trouble with his skin when he shaves). But this is where the grooming ends...he does all the necessary stuff like cutting his nails, shaving, showering, etc and he takes about 2 seconds to do his hair with styling wax. He really does put me to shame coz it takes him 15 minutes to get ready and have breakfast every morning whereas it takes me an hour! Despite his moaning that I take too long, I wouldn't want him to be taking as long as me to get ready. I guess I just prefer the fact that he isn't overly concerned with his looks. It gives off a certain level of self assurance and confidence that I find very attractive. This probably makes me such a hypocrite since my beauty regimes takes up so much time but I think that for decades now, it's been 'the norm' for women to take extra care over their looks. It's a trait that's quintesentially female.

What with all the guyliner, men's mascara and men's tanning products flooding the market...do you think men are slowly losing their macho identity or is this a step in the right direction?

I once dated a guy when I was about 21 and after a few weeks, I started to notice that his skin looked a bit peculiar. He took me aside one night and confessed that he had been wearing foundation for the past couple of years. I have to admit that I was initially horrified and it really put me off him. Then I wondered WHY he wore it as when he showed me his face without it, he had perfectly good skin that didn't need covering up. As much as I tried to be ok with it...I just wasn't. I like men to be masculine and the fact that his foundation kept rubbing off on my shoulders when we hugged just really freaked me out. I didn't want to be narrow minded or shallow but I couldn't help feeling that he had too many feminine traits. I just wasn't attracted to him anymore.

I don't think there's anything wrong with guys who want to look good and like to spend a bit of time on themselves. I guess it's really up to personal preference as to where you want to draw the line.

What do you guys think?

Friday, 21 August 2009

Elain Colorist Bijou Beam Lipgloss

Hi girlies, I just wanted to do a post on a lipgloss from Elain Colorist that I got sent ages ago and have only just got the chance to use. It's called Elain Colorist Bijou Beam Ultra Shine Lips in Butterfly (kind of a mouthful!). I guess I put off using it because it looked like totally the wrong colour for me. I usually avoid any dark colour on my lips because it never suits me.
It's weird because when the lipgloss is in the tube, it looks like a lightish berry colour, as you can see from the pic. However, when you swatch it or apply it to your lips, it looks like more of a peachy colour with a great sheen to it that almost looks slightly metallic, but in a good way. It just shows you that you just don't know what a product will look like until you swatch it!

It's actually very similar to the Lancome Juicy Tube in Simmer that I love, except that this product is only $12 (approx £7) and you get a 10g tube for that price. If you want to check out the other shades available, click on this link http://www.elaincosmetics.com/bijou-beam.html.

I was surprised to find that, despite the initial confusion over colour, the shade really suited me and is closer than I thought to the nude/peachy/pinky shades that I feel most comfortable wearing. You'll have to excuse the hair in the next couple of pics, I wasn't feeling well today so not much effort went into the hair! It just got pinned back haphazardly (I don't normally do this coz I always think my forehead looks huge!ha ha)
I would say this colour would suit most people and it's very wearable. The formulation is SLIGHTLY sticky but I actually don't mind it in this case. The reason I don't mind it is because the ever so slight stickiness seems to make the product last longer on your lips, which has to be a good thing. It really depends on your personal preference with lip glosses. For example, some people hate juicy tubes and some people love them. I normally steer clear of sticky lip products but, if it adds to the longevity of the gloss, then I can grin and bear it.

So, in conclusion, I would say that this is definitely a gloss that I would buy however I might not have got past the initial look of the colour, had I just seen it in a shop,it's very deceiving. I wouldn't say that it's a HG product as I have millions of lipglosses that do the same job, but it's a nice shade to add to my collection and I will be using it again. I would say that if you're looking for a cheaper dupe of Lancome Juicy Tubes for a more affordable price, the this product would be a good bet.



Thursday, 20 August 2009

Everyone keeps asking me to mess up my hair so...

Ok, so its not super messy but this is as messy as it gets for me!

For this makeup look I used:

Face: Revlon Colourstay Foundation in True Beige, YSL Touche Eclat, MAC Select Cover, MAC MSF Natural in Medium, Prestige SLM in Rich Bronze, Barry M Natural Dazzle for contouring, MAC Cream Colour Base in Shell for highlight (I love the sheen this creates on cheekbones!).
Eyes: MAC Paint Pot in Rubenesque as a base, MAC Shroom all over lid, then MAC All That Glitters over that, MAC Omega in the crease, then MAC Woodwinked in outer corner and winged out. I used MAC Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Engraved along the lashline, MAC Penultimate Liquid Liner in Rapid Black to define after that, then MAC Carbon to soften. I used Maxfactor Calorie 2000 mascara in black and the lightest colour in the Sleek Safari eyeshadow palette in the tearduct.

Lips: Illamasqua Lipstick in Agony and Bourjois Effect 3D in no.33






Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Tag doing the rounds...

MagpieSparkles tagged all her readers to do this tag about what products everyone is currently using that work well for them, so here goes:

Shampoo: Sebastian Penetraitt Strengthening Shampoo
Conditioner: Sebastian Penetraitt Strengthening Conditioner
Styling products: Sebastian Potion 9 Styling Spray + Paul Mitchell Skinny Serum
Shower Gel: Nivea Soft
Body moisturiser: Palmers Cocoa Butter
Deodorant: Dove Roll on
Fake Tan: St Tropez or Dove Summer Glow
Cleanser: Liz Earle Hot Cloth Cleanser
Exfoliator: St Ives Invigorating Apricot Scrub
Primer: Lancome La Base Pro or Elain Shimmering Primer
Foundation brush: don't use one
Concealer: Benefit Erase Paste and MAC Select Cover
Powder: MAC MSF Natural in Medium (it's the daddy!)
Blusher: don't wear any, I have rosy cheeks naturally
Bronzer: Lancome Mineral Tropique Bronzer
Highlighter: Benefit High Beam, Prestige SLM in Pure Shimmer or MAC MSF in Soft and Gentle
Eyeshadow base: MAC Paint Pots in Painterly, Rubenesque or Bare Study
Eyeshadows: 17 eyeshadow in Statuesque (current fave), Sleek Safari palette, MAC Omega
MAC Eyeliner: MAC Fluidline in Blacktrack or MAC Penultimate Liquid Liner
Curler: Some cheap ASDA buy
Mascara: YSL Faux Cils in Black, Loreal Telescopic in Carbon Black or Maxfactor Calorie 2000
Lipstick: YSL Rouge Volupte in No.2
Lipgloss: L'Occitane Rose Petale Lipgloss (gorgeous milky peach colour)
Nail Colour: Elf nailpolish in Light Pink

I tag anyone else who wants to join in!

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

6 Products I have been LOVING this week

Hello ladies! I thought I would let you in on what products I am really enjoying using this week, some are new and some, I have had some for ages.

The products are:

1) Soap & Glory Heel Genius - I have been really trying to show some love to my feet recently. I had neglected them for a while coz I was just too busy to file/scrub/intensely moisturise them. The result was very dry feet...not very pretty! My love of high heels means that I really have to keep on top of this problem. So at the weekend, I went to work on them using a foot file, foot scrub and foot cream. The foot cream of choice was S & G's Heel Genius and I gotta say that after applying it every night since Saturday and popping on some cotton socks to sleep in, my feet are now silky soft and looking lovely. The cream contains Allantoin, Glycerin, Macadamia Oil, Menthol, Bilberry and Orange & Lemon Fruit Acid Smoothers.

2)Sebastian Penetraitt Deep Strengthening and Repair Mask - As part of my Project Healthy Hair posts, I have been trying out this mask that was sent to me. I have been using the Philip Kingsley Elasticizer and this product to stregthen my hair. I love the initial effect it has of making my hair feel nourished but weightless at the same time. So they are my current favourites and I will be using them both once a week to improve the overall condition of my hair.

3) Sebastian Whipped Creme Light Conditioning Style Whip - This was another product I was sent for free to test out. I got loads of products from the Sebastian line and I will be posting reviews on them all over the next couple of weeks. When I squirted this styling creme into my hand, I loved the way it looked like real whipped cream! It looks good enough to eat...take a look for yourself...

The formula is so creamy and feels really luxurious. It also has a really nice fresh smell. Once you have dried your hair, there's absolutely no crunchiness or dry feeling like you get with some mousses. I would say that this product is better for giving your blow dry a bit of bounce but it's by no means a super volumising product. It's more of a light styler for fine hair (I'm not sure what effect it would have on thicker hair). I love using this because I feel like it's conditioning my hair as I use it.

4) Bourjois Shimmering Shine Liquid Eyeshadow in no.33 Beige Metallique - I have spoken about this product before whilst doing FOTD's. I just adore this stuff because the colour is so flattering, it's a pale bronzey beige that can be worn alone or as a base (the swatch doesn't do it justice). It lasts all day without creasing at all and it lasts for ages. I really wish they did this product in more colours coz they're onto a winner. It's a shade that would suit everyone and it's so pretty. I hope they never discontinue this coz I would keep buying this forever.
5) Loreal Telescopic Mascara in Carbon Black - My usual favourite mascara is YSL Faux Cils but as mine had dried out recently (an annoying trait of this product :( ), I started using my other mascaras that often get neglected. I picked up Telescopic and was reminded how good this mascara is for creating a really long clean look. It really lengthens my lashes and never clumps. It never smudges or flakes and I would really recommend it to everyone.

6) L'Occitane Rose Petale Lip Gloss - I picked this gloss up whilst browsing in the L'Occitane store looking for their gorgeous shower oil. It was sitting in a bowl at the till and like the typical beauty junkie that I am, I picked up two (one of which I sent to Michelle a.k.a. Lipstick Rules for our swap). This Rose Petal shade really impressed me coz it's a really milky peach colour and it's alot more pigmented than I thought it would be!It looks gorgeous over nude lipsticks and also lovely on it's own. It makes your lips feel really soft too as it contains Shea Butter and musky rose oil...a product that looks great AND conditions your lips! Perfect!












Monday, 17 August 2009

Philip Kingsley Elasticizer

I feel like I'm jumping on the bandwagon awfully late with this one coz this product has almost achieved cult status in magazines. I was sent this product at the weekend and I couldn't wait to try it. I hope you guys know that, if I am sent a product for free, I am always upfront about it and would never say I like something just because I got it for free. I just wanted to clear that up first as there's been alot of comments going around these blogs at the moment surrounding people doing reviews on products they were sent. I always do honest reviews and I wil continue to do so no matter what.

I have only used this mask once and I was surprised to see that you have to apply this hair mask BEFORE you shampoo your hair. You wet your hair, apply it thoroughly (I combed it through) and leave it on for 10-20 mins. The product promised to deliver "intensive, super-moisturising treatment for all hair types. Adds elasticity, manageability, bounce and shine".

I was a bit dubious that if it's applied before shampooing that the benefits might just get washed down the drain. But I have to say that it made a very noticeable different to the condition of my hair with just one application. Below is a pic of my hair blowdried straight with NO styling products at all. I'm really happy with the shine and softness of my hair. I will report back in a few weeks after using this once or twice a week and see if it transforms my hair. I really like this hair mask so far and I can see why it's been so popular. I'm always looking for products to imrpove the texture and look of my hair coz I get it highlighted every 6 weeks and this can take it's toll after a while. I will be continuing Project Healthy Hair by not using heated appliances as much and using products like this one.

Have you used this product and if so, what do you think of it?


Sunday, 16 August 2009

Photo Tag

Michelle (LipstickRules) tagged me for this and I'm warning you...it's emotional!

The Rules are...
1. Open your first photo folder

2.Scroll down to the tenth photo

3. Post that photo on your blog and tell us the story behind it

4. Tag 5 or more other people to do the same!

Let me introduce you to Ben (front)and Sam (back), my family got Ben when I was 12 years old and I was so excited to have my first dog and he was perfect! SUCH a good dog and so intelligent. Mum and dad said we could only have one dog but after 3 years, they decided to get another golden retriever to keep him company. So we went to the same dog breeders and got Sam (he had the same parents as Ben so they were brothers essentially). Sam was such a big lump and he was the last puppy left...no one wanted him coz he was "weird looking". We fell in love with him at first sight, he was like a gentle giant. He was very nervous at first but he soon came out of his shell and he followed Ben EVERYWHERE. The photo above was taken about a year after we got Sam.

Fast forward another 3 years and we couldn't wish for better dogs, everyone adored them. One day, we started to notice that Sam didn't seem very well, he was off his food and that really wasn't like him. So we took him to the vet and were informed that sadly he was experiencing total renal failure and they only gave him a week or two to live. We were utterly devastated at the news and he was only 6 years old. I was so upset and couldn't stop crying.

A couple of days after geting the bad news about Sam, Ben was outside in the garden and my mum saw his face fall in his water bowl and he collapsed on the garden path. We rushed him straight to the vet and after loads of tests and checks, the vet told us he had cancer and it had spread too far to help him. This was just too much for us, we knew we were going to lose Sam in the next week and now the vet was telling us that Ben would have to be put to sleep that very night. My heart just caved in and my chest ached with the thought of not having them around. It was so painful to have to let go of Ben that night but we knew it was the best thing for him. After Ben died, Sam just seemed to completely give up, like he knew his brother wasn't coming back. It was so sad to watch him fade away but after just over a week, he passed away.

There are alot of people who don't like dogs or have never had one that wonder why people get so upset at losing them. All I can say is that when I was around them I felt so calm, they were so affectionate and were so much part of our family and I will never forget them and how they were so much a part of growing up.

I now tag:

15 Steps, then a Beauty Blog

Belle Du Jour

Feline

Hele Says

The Gloss Goss

My Style Icon

You will have heard me say before that I really admire the style and makeup of Charlize Theron. I never hear anyone else say she is an icon, but to me she is the epitome of class and grace. She is an amazing actress who, in the film, Monster, put on weight and appeared on screen bloated and rather unattractive. This brave step made me admire her even more. I mean, you wouldn't see many hollywood actresses who would be willing to put on so much weight and be shown in such an unflattering way. This proved to everyone that she was a real actress and she was willing to forsake her looks to get into character. Her make up is always so understated, effortless and natural and she often opts for a bronzey eye look with nude lips. Her style is uncomplicated and chic and given that she has a very natural beauty, she doesn't need flamboyant clothes to shine. She is a great example of someone who wears the clothes, rather than the clothes wearing her. She also manages to be incredibly sexy without really showing any flesh. It's very rare to see her in anything revealing and I really like that she keeps it classy. I also like the fact that she isn't overexposed in magazines, you don't see her in reality shows or continuously pushing her personal life in people's faces. Saying that, she is a regular in the best dressed pages...I rest my case.

FOTD

Face: Maxfactor Lasting Performance foundation in Honey Beige, Benefit Erase Paste under eyes, MAC Select Cover up for blemishes/redness, MAC MSF Natural in Medium, Prestige Skin Loving Minerals powder in Rich Bronze, Benefit High Beam on cheekbones.Eyes: MAC Paint Pot in Bare Study as a base, Barry Dazzledust in no.51 (Mushroom), MAC Fluidline in Blacktrack, Bourjois eyeshadow in Blanc Diaphane on inner eyelid, Elf Studio Golden Bronzer (lightest shade) on browbone, Clarins eyebrow pencil in Ash Blonde, Loreal Telescopic Mascara in Black, Rimmel eyeliner in White for waterline.

Lips: YSL Rouge Volupte in No.2, Elf Candy Shop Lipgloss in Frosting Fanatic.







Friday, 14 August 2009

Elf Haul & a nice surprise

I think everyone visits the Elf website quite regularly now to buy a few things because it's just too tempting when all the products cost just £1.50 each (even the Studio products cost just £3.50 each!). With such teeny tiny prices, it doesn't really matter too much if not ALL the purchases you make work out for you. I got the Shimmering Facial Whips in Persimmon and Lilac Petal coz I loved the idea of using these on cheeks and browbones as a kind of highlighter or blush. The consistency is a bit thicker than I would like and it remains a bit sticky on your face until it settles down. This I did not like. I like the colours but because they are so thick and sticky, I kinda feel like I'm wiping off some of my makeup when I apply them. The jury is out on this product until I can work out the best way to use it. I do however like the Candy Shop Lipgloss in Frosting Fanatic...it smells like cotton candy and it's like a shimmery peach colour, I have worn it alone and over lipstick and I really like the effect it gives. I just see it as a cheap and cheerful product and I love the retro design of the sliding tin!
I also got three nail polishes (I have too many already but at £1.50, who could say no???). I got Coral and Royal Purple for my toenails and the light pink will be a nice subtle colour for my fingernails. I prefer not too wear dark or bright colours on my nails, I just prefer the cleaner look of having a french manicure or nice subtle sheen to them. I think everyone has their own preference regarding nail polish though. The polishes do need a couple of coats for the colour to really show up the way you would want it too but I'm actually impressed with these and I will definitely go back for more colours. I love the plastic rim around the top of the bottle with the drips, it's a quirky design idea.

I got a metallic silver makeup bag to replace the one that got ruined by an exploded face powder...hate it when that happens! I also got an eyeshadow brush which I am so impressed with. It's soft but firm enough to pick up lots of eyeshadow, it blends well and it's amazing value for money. I will be going back to try more of their brushes after this diamond find! The waterproof eyeliners? Hmmm, not so impressed by them, in fact the Coffee and Black shaed were downright rubbish. You will see from the swatches that the two stripes nearest the right are supposed to be black and brown! The pigmentation is awful and I was so disappointed by these, I just chucked them in the bin! The midnight one, which is a dark navy is reasonable so I have decided to keep that and see how I get on with it.

The Brightening Eyeliner in Gilded looks quite nice but it's been outshone by the 17 gold eye pencil in my last haul which was a nicer shade and more pigmented. The Eyeliner and Shadiow Stick in Smoke and Black looks very nice and I'm looking forward to creating a subtle smokey eye with this. The shadow goes on very creamy and the liner is reasonable pigmented so I will have a go at using this soon and see what I think.

And lastly, while at work yesterday, I got a call to say that my mum was in reception. Off I trotted wondering why my mum had unexpectedly turned up. I walked around the corner and there's my mum's beaming face, throwing her arms around me (in usual style) she exclaimed that she was shopping and saw something that made her think of me. My mum does this occasionally, just randomely buys me clothes and I love it when she does because she knows exactly what I will like. She got me the skirt above and I love it! It's a gorgeous turqouise floral design skirt with a black elasticated waist and a cheeky little panel of leopard print. It totally made my day!




Thursday, 13 August 2009

Haul

My fiance is going away tomorrow for a week to go kayaking in the Outer Hebrides...rather him than me! Anyways, we were going to get some food shopping so I didn't starve while he was away (his words, not mine!). I told him I had to "pop into Boots on the way past to get something". Now in girl talk this should be translated to "I want to go and look at all the pretty makeup stuff for a while, tell myself I won't buy anything, then buy everything". After an unspecified amount of time, I emerged from Boots with a bag, to which my boyfriend announced "Finally!"...I, of course made up some excuse that there was a huge queue and the girl behind the till was really slow...which wasn't true (sorry Boots girl). What WAS true was that I got sidetracked buying lovely goodies and here is what I got:

I don't usually even look at the 17 counter in Boots coz I haven't used it since I was a teenager but after seeing Tali a.k.a. The Gloss Goss talking about how good the bronzing pearls were, I decided to take a look at what the brand had to offer. I saw quite a few lovely products. After swatching like a mad woman, I got the 17 Ligloss in Star Girl, Barry M Ligloss in no.4 and 17 Eye Pencil in Gold. I loved the lilacy shade of the 17 gloss and thought it was a flattering and easy-to-wear variation on the trend. I also LOVE the Barry M one, I have seen a few people posting on this product and I really like the milky opaque pinky/lilac effect it gives. It's quite full-on pastel for daytime so I will probably wait until I go out somewhere at night to try it out properly. At first, I thought the two lipglosses looked very similar, but on closer inspection and after swatching, you will see below that the 17 gloss is a sheerer, more shimmery peachy/lilac version of the Barry M gloss. So basically, I would wear the 17 one in the daytime for a more subtle look and the Barry M one for a more striking look at night.

The 17 Eye Pencil in Gold was an impulse buy but I'm SO glad I tried it coz it is SUPER pigmented and after swatching it, I washed my hand and it took a good three washes to get it off!This says to me that when I wear it, it's gonna be long lasting and won't budge. I will definitely go back and try out the other shades, from memory I think there was a silver one, purple, blue and black one. At just over £3.00, these are great value for money!

The product that made me check out the brand was the Instant Glow Bronzing Pearls in Medium. Tali had said that they give a gorgeous glow and I agree. When I swatched it, it looks like it would be a great product to add a glow to the hairline and cheekbones. I wouldn't say it's a product I would use as a bronzer for my whole face though as the colour isn't strong enough for that. The different coloured pearls just add that extra bit of sheeny glowiness and the swatch pic below certainly doesn't do it justice (you can thank my rubbish camera). I will have to use it in a FOTD to show you what I mean.

There was also a deal on that when you spent over £5 on 17 products, you get a free Bronzed & Gorgeous Summer Glow Kit as pictured below...

I wasn't expecting much from this palette as it didn't look that exciting at first...BUT...the eyeshadow called Statuesque (the taupey brown colour) is just gorgeous! I didn't expect it to be that pigmented and I would say that with a good base, this would be a stunning all over lid colour! The other eyeshadow in Ivory Coast didn't show up well in the pic but it's basically just a matte vanilla colour and you could use it as a highlight or to tone down the darker shade but it's a bit blah really. The bronzer in the palette is basically exactly like the bronzing pearls but in powder form. I hate the silly little cheap brushes they put in these kind of palettes...they're never any good. The disappointing part of the palette was the lipgloss, it's so rubbish, they didn't even give it a name. There's no pigment to it at all! I won't bother using it. I'm not that bothered about that though coz it was a freebie so anything good about it is a bonus.

The next section I skipped over to was Prestige. I have been desperate to try their other Skin Loving Mineral Powders ever since I got Pure Shimmer (one of my fave highlighters) and their bronzer in St Tropez. I got the most popular blogger choice, Glam Tan and the lesser blogged about, Rich Bronze. When I first swatched Glam Tan, I knew it was too dark for me to use as an all over bronzer, but it will be brilliant as a contour! I think Rich Bronze is alot more wearable, I am wearing it today and although I suspected it might be a bit shimmery to use all over the face as a bronzer, it looks really good. The shimmer isn't noticeable and it creates more of a glowy look to the skin. I love the quality of these mineral powders, they are great value for money and have the same concept as MAC MSF's. I really like the sturdy packaging too.



So after my very successful shopping trip to Boots, I came away a very happy bunny and with my arms and hands covered in different swatches of make-up...I felt VERY self conscious in the queue for the till...the guy next to me kept looking at my arms. I had a real urge to say to him "you're a guy...you don't understand these things! It's girl stuff!"