Friday, 30 April 2010

A General Ramble

I'm feeling a bit random today so I thought I would reflect my mood by writing a random post about various things that I am coveting/loving at the moment! 

TURQUOISE JEWELLERY

I definitely go through phases of being obsessed with different things and after seeing Jessica Szohr from Gossip Girl wearing THAT amazing turquoise necklace, I have been searching for turquoise jewellery everywhere! I also remember seeing pics of Cameron Diaz at an awards ceremony a couple of years back wearing a turqouise necklace with a hot pink gown, I think the contrast between those two colours is just amazing. 
I love wearing turquoise jewellery with white tops as well because it looks so fresh and summery.  What colour are you obsessed with at the moment?

MONSOON

I have always loved Monsoon for their dresses and summer clothes, they always have really bright hues that instantly make me feel like summer is here.  I spotted a really cute summer dress in there this week (pictured below).  It would be perfect for my honeymoon with some cute summer sandals! I also spotted some lovely grey shorts and since they were made of a very light material, they would be perfect to be dressed up or down on holiday.  Lastly, I am a sucker for anything with sparkly bits, sequins or beading so the grey lightweight cardigan below with sequin lapels is right up my street! It would be great to layer and use instead of a jacket on warmer days.

REISS

Yes, my fixation on Reiss continues...I am loving their accessories at the moment, especially their bags! I also love the beaded suede jacket shown below, I've never seen anything like it before and I must have it!

AX PARIS

While I was browsing in New Look, I came across this brand called AX Paris.  The main reason why it caught my attention was because of this really pretty cream top that had beautiful chiffon leaf deatiling around the bust.  As soon as I saw it, I was mentally matching it to outfits in my wardrobe.  The best thing was that the top was only £20! What an amazing bargain! They didn't have my size so I am definitely going to check out the other New Look in Aberdeen for my size because I need this top in my life! Another item that jumped out at me from AX Paris was the butterfly print sun dress below...how pretty!

JENNIFER ANISTON

Now this may be a controversial comment for some of you, but I have never been the greatest fan of Jennifer Aniston (well to clarify, I didn't love her or hate her, I just didn't have an opinion on her).  I think it's probably just down to the fact that she is on every magazine cover and I ended up just getting bored reading about her and seeing her.  Granted it's not her fault because the media seem to have latched on this 'poor single girl' persona that has been attached to her.  I do feel bad for her because she has been made out to be some desperate 40-something singleton who is clinging onto every guy she dates.  I don't believe that to be true and I have to admit that I was impressed by how dignified she was throughout the whole Brad-Angelina saga.  She is the quintessential 'girl-next-door' and no matter what films she stars in, people will always think of her as Rachel Green.  I was flicking through a mag recently (I think it was Harper's Bazaar) and I found myself being wowed by a photoshoot...
I mean whether you like her or dislike her, one thing I wil say is that I would LOVE to look this good when I'm in my 40's! She looks amazing, I mean, just look at her figure! I love that golden beached blonde California girl look that she rocks and although her fashion choices are always VERY safe, she never gets it wrong.  Kudos to Jennifer.  I wish the media would start giving her a break for once.

KELIS - ACAPELLA

And the last random bit of this post? Well, I just wanted to say that I LOVE this new song by Kelis - Acapella.  I always have this on when I'm working out at the gym because it's a really uplifting song when you feel like you're going to give up after 30 mins on the cross trainer! She apparently wrote it about her son which really makes sense when you listen to the lyrics.

I really like the video too, it's an extravaganza of colour and crazy head-gear that just has you glued to the screen.  I much prefer creative music videos to those ones where they just stick a load of girls in bikinis and get them to play football.

What are your favourite songs/music videos of the moment?

Thursday, 29 April 2010

FOTD

I didn't have a very good start to my day today...I was just out of the shower and my hands were slippy so when I picked up my favourite day cream (Elemis Pro Collagen Marine Cream) it slipped right out of my hands.  Just like a buttered piece of toast, it landed face down on the floor and all the cream splatted all over the ground.  I actually yelled out "nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!" ha ha.  That's not the worst thing, I was so determined to salvage the wreckage that I scooped up the top layer of the moisturiser mountain on the bathroom floor and put it back in the jar! Oh deary me...desperation is a terrible thing!
So anyways, enough of the moisturiser massacre! On to the new products I used in this FOTD (for a list of all the products I used for this FOTD, please go t the end of this post).  Now this product first came to my attention because Holly over at The Yummy Mummy's Beauty Blog was raving about this alot at one point and since then, it's been on my wish list.  I rarely go a day without eyeliner but in the daytime, sometimes it's nicer to tone it down by using softer hues like navy blue, purple or brown.  This YSL Eyeliner Moire in no.6 (Chocolate Reflections).  This eyeliner has an oil-in-water formula with shimmering golden highlights throughout.  It has a fine brush which I'm not overly keen on because it can be had to get an even line with those types of applicators.  I often prefer the felt tip pen ones because you can apply more pressure on them to control the line.  Despite my problem with the brush, I still LOVE this liner.  The rich chocolate colour is really pretty and the product definitely stays put all day without smudging or flaking off.  I reckon this will fast become a product that I use on a daily basis because it creates just the right amount of definition without making your eyes looked too heavy or 'done up'.

In this FOTD I also used the YSL Semi Loose Powder Natural Radiance in no.3 (Amber).  It has a 'Bright Pearl Complex' which promises a luminous matte finish.  That is pretty much what I always want from a powder.  This semi loose powder is very light on the skin and it has a similar finish to that of Mac MSF Natural but in my opinion, better.  The reason why I think this is better is because it lasts alot longer on my skin.  I don't have to reapply it at all on a normal day, obviously if I'm rushing around or in a hot room etc then I would probably have to re-apply.  But this powder does have great staying power.  My complexion looks radiant when I wear this powder and there's no cakey-ness or powdery look to my skin.  I adore the packaging for this powder too, from the external look of the gold tin to the black turntable dispenser inside.  With a small twist of this turntable, it dispenses just the right amount of powder without creating lots of mess.  There's a plastic guard to cover the dispenser whilst it's not in use and then the brush sits on top of that.  There's also a mirror in the lid which is a must for when you're out and about.  

I have heard alot of people raving about Mac's Fix Plus lately and I definitely want to try it at some point.  However Clarin's have a product which is very similar called Fix' Make-up.  It's a super fine mist with hydrating and soothing ingredients like rose extract.  It helps to set your makeup, makes it last longer and also helps to promote a matte complexion.  I love how refreshing this feels and it's a must have for holidays and summer.  The best thing about these types of products is that you can spritz your face after you have finished applying your makeup and it takes away that powdery look that you can sometimes get when you have applied powder, blush and powder highlighter.  It creates a glowy complexion without looking shiny.  I watched Holly's vid on YouTube today about how she uses her Mac Fix Plus (can be viewed here) and she gave the great tip to dry your face with a hairdryer after spritzing to ensure that your makeup sets evenly.  The next product from Clarins that I used was Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch.  I actually found this primer was very similar in the effect it gave to YSL Matt Touch and also Loreal Studio Resurfacing Primer.  Those two happen to be my favourites when it comes to filling out fine lines, smoothing the skin's surface and creating a matte base for makeup.  The difference with this primer is that it contains highly beneficial ingredients that care for your skin as you wear it.  It also contains miniscule spongey spheres that plump out your skin and fill in any fine lines.  This primer melts into skin, doesn't feel greasy and feels super light.  You only need a tiny amount for each application and it comes with a spatula so you don't have to dig your fingernails into the product.  I first heard about this product from Aleksis over at Alpha Blonde when she was raving about it on her blog and since we generally love the same things, I knew I wanted to try it.  I am a bit of a primer-holic so this product is right up my street.  I love how it makes my skin look flawless under foundation and I really do believe that it helps foundation to adhere to the skin for longer.  I just feel more 'secure' in a way when I'm wearing it underneath my makeup.
I have seen this YSL eyeshadow duo in quite a few magazines recently being listed as a must have item for summer.  This duo is in no.1 (Heavenly Beige and Astral Brown) and it really satisfies my neutrals craving.  I just find shades like this so wearable for everyday and it really suits my blue eyes.  I like the fact that YSL give you two applicators for each shade just to keep things clean and simple.  The eyeshadows themselves have good pigmentation and I really like the subtle shimmering effect they have. 
Another product I used from YSL is the Variation Blush in no.18 (Coral Sand).  Now I would describe this more as a blush and highlighter combined as the alternating squares in the pan are a pale peachy coral shade and a sheeny pale golden beige.  It is a very pale blush so I would say that for anyone who likes strong blush shades, you're better off giving this a miss as it's a very subtle effect.  In the swatch above, I have shown the blush on the top, then the highlighter, then both of them blended together at the bottom.  I like to use it as a daytime highlighter, much the same way as you would use Mac Beauty Powder in Shell.  It just gives a hint of colour to the cheeks which looks pretty.

Just a quick word on a shampoo and conditioner I have been enjoying using this week too...Pantene Volume & Body Shampoo and Conditioner.  I normally don't like Pantene as it makes my fine hair way too soft and it ends up becoming flyaway and full of static.  However, the lighter formula of this shampoo and conditioner has really given my hair it's bounce back and as you can see from the pics at the start of the post, it has definitely made a difference to the volume of my hair.  I love it when cheaper hair products really come through for you!

Products used in FOTD:
Face: Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch, Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation in Fresco, Mac Select Moisturecover Concealer in NW20 under eyes, Benefit Boi-ing Concealer in Medium around nose and on blemishes, YSL Semi-Loose Natural Radiance Powder in Amber, Korres Monoi Oil Bronzer in no.2, Sleek Face Contour Kit, YSL Variation Blush in Coral Sand, Mac MSF in Soft & Gentle on cheekbones.Spritzed Clarins Fix' Makeup to finish.
Eyes: Mac Paint Pot in Soft Ochre all over lid, YSL Eyeshadow Duo in no.1, Paul & Joe Eye Gloss in no.1 on browbone, Clarins eyebrow pencil in Soft Blonde, YSL Eyeliner Moire in Chocolate Reflections along top lashline and flicked out, Benefit Eye Bright on waterline, Benefit Powderflage under eye, Lancome Hypnose Drama Mascara in black. 
Lips: L'Occitane Rose Petal Lip Gloss

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Ebay just got even better!

I just read something on the Marie Claire website that I felt compelled to share with you guys since it's an exciting revelation regarding buying clothes (I know you all LOVE shopping too!). I don't know about you guys but I think Ebay is always fantastic for picking up clothes for next to nothing (and makeup).  You can pick up current items that are in stores for a fraction of the shop price.

I just read now that Ebay have created a new section to their website called 'Fashion Outlet' that is available now.  They have teamed up with high street stores like Office, Kookai, Dune, House of Fraser, Schuh and Ted Baker to offer their latest trends at discounted prices! They have also released a statetment that they have other brands that are interested in joing this Fashion Outlet so the brands list will keep growing!  The high street brands will be sold via the Ebay site at up to 70% off.

Since I adore Dune shoes, I will definitely be taking a look at this site for future purchases!

Update and some Nars

Ok, first up is my little update on life and things.  I reached 700 followers yesterday and I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who takes the time to follow/read my blog.  I never thought when I started out last May that I would ever get more than 30 followers, never mind 700! I just wanted to let you guys know that I appreciate each and every one of you.

Another update is that my Slim Fast plan is going AMAZINGLY well.  I have been on it for just over 2 weeks now.  I lost 2 and a half lbs after the first week and when I weighed myself yesterday, I had lost another 2lbs in the second week! I couldn't believe it at first and had to stand on the scales 4 times JUST to make sure! It feels like the weight is just dropping off me and I am so happy.  Basically all I'm doing is the following:
  • Slim Fast shake for breakfast
  • Low Fat Snack (something that's about 100 cals)
  • Slim Fast shake for lunch
  • Low Fat Snack
  • A proper meal for dinner (about 600 cals)
  • Low Fat Dessert
I also go to the gym 3 times a week for 45 minute sessions.  I do 30 mins of cardio and 15 mins of weights.  I find that the best thing to do is try and switch up your cardio each time you go i.e. 15 mins of cross trainer then 15 mins of spinning, then the next time you go, try 20 mins of rowing machine and 10 mins of spinning etc.  This routine, together with the Slim Fast plan has been working like a dream!  I am so excited to see my body changing over time and with 3 months to go until the wedding, I am more than on track to reaching my goal.  When I started out in February last year, it seemed like such a huge task but I've lost 2 stone and 8lbs (36 lbs) in total.  It's hard to believe that I was walking around with that much extra weight on my body!

Now onto Nars...ok, it's official, I definitely prefer Nars Sheer Glow to Nars Sheer Matte foundation.  These two foundations are worlds apart in everything from coverage to consistency to finish (that's me stating the obvious).  The reasons that I like Nars Sheer Glow are as follows:
  • I found my perfect shade match in Punjab
  • It feels lightweight on your skin so it's perfect for summer days
  • It gives my skin a wonderful glow and freshness
  • It doesn't streak and is easy to blend (I have heard that it streaks on other people though)
  • It gives me just enough coverage
  • It lasts for a reasonable amount of time (about 8-9 hours on my skin)
However, Nars Sheer Matte really didn't agree with me at all.  It was cakey, patchy, streaky and the coverage was awful.  It didn't even out my skintone even after two layers with a foundation brush.  I don't want to have to work that hard to create the coverage I want.  In summer, I don't want to waste all my time trying to get flawless skin and miss being out in the sunshine!  I also noticed that the Sheer Matte Foundation is alot thicker in consistency than Sheer Glow.  I just really didn't like it at all.  Summer skin should be all about looking fresh, natural and dewy.  I really should have known by the name that it wasn't for me but hey, you can't blame me for being curious.  Sometimes it's nice to have a soft matte complexion but for me, Nars Sheer Matte was the solution.

Something that I am loving of late though, is the Nars lipgloss in Turkish Delight (Kim Kardashian's gloss of choice).  It's described as a sorbet pink and that's exactly what it is.  Although I know that Nars lipglosses are a bit of a nightmare when it comes to the weird smell they omit after a while, I just can't resist some of the colours! Turkish Delight just looks so good on, especially over Mac Angel lipstick.  I have my eye on the newest shade which is called Sweet Revenge which is described as a sheer pink grapefruit...yum! I do like the consistency of the Nars glosses and the effect they give so I am willing to forgive the smell issue.
Nars Multiples are renowned in magazines and what not but I have never tried them before.  My first foray into The Multiples is Copacabana which is a glistening pearl (swatch can be seen below).  The concept behind the The Multiples is for them to deliver translucent, shimmering colour that's easy to apply.  They can be used on the face or body.  I think you do get quite alot of product but I can't help thinking that £27.00 is alot of money for a product such as this.  The consistency of this product is quite creamy and it does apply really easily.  I never apply these types of products directly to my face as more often than not, this deposits way too much product on your skin and will end up looking heavy.  So I use my fingers to dab the product on my cheekbones and anywhere else I want to place it. 
I quite like the colour although I think it looks better on paler skin than on tanned skin because it definitely has cool tones in it.  It's quite a subtle highlighter and isn't immediately obvious on your cheekbones.  I would probably be more inclined to wear this product at night though, since the shimmer verges on being a little too much in the day time.  It's long lasting and pretty easy to blend into the skin, as long as you dab it on with your fingertips.  So to conclude, I do like this but I think it's overpriced for what it is.

Have you tried the Sheer Matte foundation?  What were your thoughts on it?

Monday, 26 April 2010

L'Occitane's New Makeup Collection

I got wind of a new makeup collection from L'Occitane, who at the moment, only do lip balms.  I love their lipbalms so I am mega excited to see what else they have come up with!  I got a leaflet through in the post today about the Peony Limited Edition collection and it all looks so pretty and fresh.  I hope you guys are as excited as I am!  It will all be available from May onwards so I think I will definitely check these products out.  They have also brought out a new frangrance called Paeonia.  Feast your eyes on these pics...


Everything looks beautiful and I adore the packaging too.  The collection includes: 

Illuminating Powder 10g £19.50

Healthy Glow Face Powder 10g £19.50

Facecolour Powder 3.5g £12.50

Facecolour Powder duo 3.5g £12.50

Lipstick 3.5g £12.50

Lip Balm 15ml £8.00

Liquid Shine Lip Colour 8ml £11.50

Tinted Water 4.5ml £9.50



I love the look of the lipgloss! Pale pinks are so me and I can't wait to get my hands on this version which has fine pink and golden shimmers...gorgeous!

There will also be a few other products available in the collection as follows:

Paeonia Eau de Toilette 75ml ‐2.5 fl oz spray £28.00

Paeonia Intense Eau de Toilette Roll‐on 10ml £13.50

Paeonia Beauty Milk 250ml £17.50

Paeonia Shower Cream 250ml £12.50

Paeonia Petal Soap 125g £7.00

Paeonia Beauty Powder 40g £22.00

What do you like from this collection?

Saturday, 24 April 2010

My Embarassing Beauty Misdemeanors

Despite the fact that I spend alot of time writing about beauty products, watching countless YouTube vids and generally being a beauty obsessed girl, sometimes I really lack common sense when it comes to my beauty routines. I will admit that sometimes I cut corners when I'm tired or just can't be bothered. I would like to say that I am 100% meticulous when it comes to these areas but I think everyone does things that they shouldn't or forgets to do things they should! I really should know better to be honest! Here's a list of things that could be included in my beauty misdemeanors...
1) I know it's stupid and it probably LOOKS even more stupid but sometimes when I use self tan and I know that the only bits on show will be my legs, my arms and my top half, I only apply self tan to those areas. I guess it's really a mixture between being a bit lazy and wanting to use less product so the product lasts longer. I'm sure Chris despairs sometimes but he's the only person who gets to see me naked so I figure, he knows me well enough not to mind!ha ha. Oh dear, I think we're now a little TOO comfortable around eachother to care about these things. Who said romance was dead???hee hee.
2) I know that the trend for nails is short and squared off but I just hate my nails when they are short. I have verylong thin fingers but when my nails are short, my fingers look so much more stubby and I can't stand that. I know alot of people think that long nails look cheap or tacky but I really don't think mine look bad. I do always square them off and I don't let them grow more than a couple of centemetres. I just think my fingernails look so much prettier when they are longer. End of. Also, even though alot of people think that french manicures are strictly for footballer's wives and glamour models, I actually love the look. It always looks clean and fresh and I just prefer them like that. I ALWAYS do my own nails as I don't see why I should pay someone to do it when I do a fine job of them myself (I'm not a cheapskate...honest!).
3) No matter how many times people tell me that washing your hair every day is bad for it, I can't help but do it. I cannot stand any hint of greasiness in my hair, it just makes me feel gross and unkempt. I have tried not to wash it before and I ended up not leaving the house because I felt so manky...sad but true! I know my OCD fairy is to blame for this obsession and it ain't gonna change anytime soon so I will just have to keep using intensive treatments, olive oil and coconut oil to keep my tresses in good condition.

4) Everywhere I look, I hear makeup artist saying "you should never apply bronzer all over your face". Yep, that's another thing I do. I do apply it with a very light hand but the thing is, no matter how well my foundation matches my skintone, I always feel that my face looks paler than my chest and neck so I have to compensate by applying a very light dusting of matte bronzer all over my face. I then contour with a dark powder like the one in the Sleek Contour Kit. This is just how I do my makeup and I like it.
5) I always hear people saying "oh I apply body moisturiser every single morning after my shower" and I always find myself thinking a) who the hell has the time to do that every morning and b) the sticky feeling on my skin would just irritate me, especially in summer. I have tried to be good and do that every morning but I often found myself waiting around for the moisturiser to sink in. Also, in summer in a hot office at work, it just makes me feel horrible. I much prefer to use a shower oil so that it does two jobs in one! It's a lazy solution to the problem!
6) Everyone knows that you are supposed to change your mascara every 2-3 months but I have to say that I don't. I know they say that it can cause eye infections etc but that's never happened to me before (I know that's not the best excuse but it's the best one I could come up with and I'm sticking to it!). I guess I just find it difficult because I love YSL and Rouge Bunny Rouge mascaras and they ain't cheap! So I can never bring myself to chuck them out when they aren't even finished. The only reason I would dump a mascara is if it's no good or it dries up.
7) I really should wash my makeup brushes alot more than I do. I am good with my foundation brushes and wash them alot but when it comes to my bronzer brushes, contour brushes or eyeshadows ones, because I use the same products alot, I just never see the point in washing them twice a week. The more I write this post, the more I realise that I'm quite a lazy person!

So, tell me ladies (and be honest!)...what are your beauty faux pas???? I would love to know!

Friday, 23 April 2010

Products I'm Loving Right Now

I just wanted to take you guys through some products that I have really been enjoying using recently. I always love reading these posts on other people's blogs because it always gives me a chance to check out new products.

1) First up is MAC Face and Body Foundation (I use the shade C4). This stuff is water based so it doesn't leave a greasy film on the skin. I don't use it on my face because it doesn't offer enough coverage for me. However, I love to use it on my legs because it gives them colour and evens out the skintone at the same time. It's perfect for when you don't want a dark tan, you just want to add a little bit of colour. It's really easy to blend and lasts for as long as you want it to i.e. it only comes off when you wash it off. It also contains various emollients to keep your skin moisturised and soft. I've had mine for around a year and it's still half full! 2) The Sanctuary Bidadari Shimmering Body Souffle - I love to use this on my skin when I'm going out on the town because it moisturises whilst adding a really beautiful golden sheen to the skin. It makes your skin look really healthy and glowy and looks particularly fantastic on the decollage and legs! It's a really light formulation so it seeps into the skin quickly and without leaving any tacky or sticky feeling. It's just another product that makes me feel more glamourous when I'm all dressed up.

3) St Tropez Everyday Mousse - I spoke about this recently and I have to re-iterate how amazing this product is! I am so glad I found it because it's the answer to all my problems with self tan. As you know, I have decided to use this product for my wedding day because just one application gives me the subtle golden glow that I want. I was really paranoid about using self tan for my wedding day because I didn't want to go over the top, given that ivory naturally makes your skin look more tanned. This St Tropez gradual tanning mousse gives JUST the right amount of colour and it's so easy to use. You don't even need to use gloves! It dries so quickly and no more horrible stained bed sheets that you get with the normal St Tropex tinted mousse! This is definitely my HG self tanner!
4) Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay In Place Makeup in Fresco - I started using this again last week because it used to be my go-to foundation when I was at uni. I was so dedicated to it and then the inevitable happened...I started this blog and began wondering about other foundations out there (it's the "grass is always greener" syndrome rearing it's ugly head again!). I have to say that I've fallen in love with this foundation again because it offers fantastic coverage for night's out or special occasions, it gives a matte finish so you don't end up all shiny and it lasts soooo long! Some people feel this foundation is too heavy, although the consistency is lighter than Revlon Colorstay, but I really do think this is brillaint for anyone who wants a truly medium to full coverage. It blends well, doesn't crease in fine lines and I love it! The only small downside is that some people have experienced the SPF creating that white out effect in photos but it's never really affected me in that way . I always apply a barrier between my skin and the foundation (whether it's moisturiser and/or primer) so I think that possibly stops the SPF from creating that effect. Not sure about that but I'm taking a guess here!
5) Optrex Rereshing Eye Drops - I had never thought to feature these on my blog before until I pulled it out of my bag on a night out a few weeks ago because the atmosphere in clubs sometimes makes my eyes bloodhsot and tired looking. My friend said "wow, what a great idea!". So I thought I would give it a mention in case anyone else suffers from dry eyes in these circumstances. Also, if you wake up in the morning and your eyes are bloodshot from tiredness, or you sit in front of a computer all day, then these drops are great to cool and refresh your eyes. It really helps to get rid of the bloodshot look and you will look wide awake again.
6) Clinique Super City Block SPF40 - I always struggle to find good SPF creams for under my makeup. Most of them leave such a sticky/greasy film on the skin that causes your makeup to just slide off your face. However, this slightly tinted lightweight cream protects your skin whilst creating a really solid base for your makeup. I love it and it will be a life saver in summer and also on holiday!
7) Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess Liquid Eyeshadow in Sand Shimmer - You guys know I love my golden bronze shades and this baby definitely delivers on that! It's such a wearable colour for summer, just a single wash of this, some black liquid liner, some mascara and you're done. The only downside to this is I expected the tube to be bigger but I will definitely be checking out the rest of the collection because I generally love most of EL Bronze Goddess products.
8) Urban Decay Blow Lip Plumper - I have to say that I've had some scary experiences with lip plumpling products. I don't know if I have sensitive lips but they don't seem to react well with some of these types of products (Too Faced being one of them). I'm reasonably happy with my lips but who wouldn't like to plump their puckers up a bit more?! This plumping gloss from Urban Decay only has a very slight tint to it, it has quite a nice scent and you start to feel the numbing effect after about 2 or 3 minutes. This numb feeling lasts for around 10-15 minutes then it subsides and you're left with noticeably plumper lips. Nothing crazy or Angelina Jolie-esque but my lips just look a bit more luscious. I didn't experience any pain or discomfort with this product at all and there wasn't any redness either. This lipgloss is great and I will be using it tonight when I go out.
9) Prestige Lip Liner in Silk - I had been searching for so long to find the perfect lipliner that was subtle enough to accentuate my lips without getting the dreaded obvious line around them. This lip liner is the perfect shade to suit my natural lip colour, it applies smoothly and really lasts. For someone who loves nude and pink lips, this liner is just perfection.

What are your favourite products at the moment?

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

The PERFECT Self Tan For My Wedding

After trying out loads of different self tans and gradual tanners, I have finally found the perfect product to use for my wedding day glow. I tried Estee Lauder, Clinique, Dove, Vichy, He-Shi, Loreal and St Tropez. I couldn't seem to find the right shade I was looking for which is a natural looking, even golden glow like this...The out and out winner for me is definitely St Tropez Everday Gradual Tan Mousse. It's basically everything I have been looking for:
  • It's a light mousse formula that dries extremely quickly
  • The packaging is practical and non-messy
  • It's infused with Aloe Vera for moisturisation and an even tan
  • It's gradual so you can control the colour (although I found that one application is enough)
  • It has a refreshing smell with no weird scent after the colour has developed
  • It's a colourless foam so it won't mark your clothes or bedsheets

I wasn't sure if one application would be enough to get the colour I was after but it was absolutely perfect. I would say that it's half the colour you would get from a normal St Tropez self tan application (which was sometimes too dark for me). This stuff is so easy to apply and you can do it without gloves. Just make sure you wash your hands thoroughly afterwards to avoid brown palms! All the same rules apply to this as with normal self tans, in that you have to exfoliate beforehand and also use a very light moisturiser (Vaseline Aloe Vera cream is perfect!).

The other miracle product I have discovered is the St Tropez Tan Detox pictured on the right above. It's a mix of lavender, lemon and hazlenut oils that you add to your bath to soften your skin, whilst the exfoliating cloth you get with it can be used to remove any unwanted self tan build up. It returns your skin to it's natural tone. This product is amazing, I just added 2 cap fulls into a warm bath, soaked in it for 10 minutes and then used the exfoliating cloth in circular motions on my knees, elbows and feet. It removed any patchiness or build up without having to scrub hard at your skin and irritate it. I love this stuff and I can't believe that I haven't used it before. It's not designed to correct self tan mistakes but more to prepare your skin for the best possible self tan results by making sure your skin is smooth, moisturised and free of any self tan used previously. It's best to wait 12 hours before applying any self tan after you have used this product, just to ensure you're getting the full moisturisation benefits and also to make sure there's no oily residue left on the skin (I guess you could just take a quick shower if you're i a rush though). I love, love, love this stuff!

I feel a bit more comfortable now I have found the product that works best on my skin and I can look forward to have the perfect subtle tan on my wedding day.

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

I finally joined the club!

Yes, it's true, I finally joined the Benefit Hoola, Coralista and Gilded club. I have heard so much about these Benefit products over the last few months and although I'm not overly keen on the cardboard packaging for the powders, I couldn't help but get excited about the products inside. The boxes aren't very travel friendly because of their overly bulky size compared to the actual size of the pan. They also get tatty really quickly which is a bit of a pain. However, I live for bronzers so I'm always happy to add another addition to my collection! Coralista looks like the PERFECT summer blusher and I can see why everyone has been going mad over it. I have to say right off the bat that I rarely use the brush applicators that come with powder products because they are generally not that great. I don't like these brushes because they feel too scratchy and they're not big enough to apply the product the way I would like to. I do like the fact that both powders have plastic guards over the pans though, which prevents any mess.
I love the fact that Hoola is matte, which means it's perfect for contouring as well as all over bronzing. There are no orange tones in this bronzer, I found that it went on smoothly and without any streaks. Your best best is to apply it lightly and build it up slowly so don't try and pile too much onto your brush at once. Alot of people have complained that it sometimes goes on streaky or patchy when they have dry skin but I don't think there is a bronzer out there that wouldn't stick to dry skin. It's unavoidable really and your best bet in that case is to gently exfoliate and ensure your skin is well hydrated before applying any makeup. Also ensure that your moisturiser and foundation don't leave a tacky/sticky feeling on your skin as this will result in streaky bronzer too. I really like this bronzer for everyday use, mainly because there aren't any shimmer particles so it looks super natural on the skin.
I have been looking for the perfect peachy blush for summer and I think this is it! It's the perfect mix of pink and peach. I generally don't favour blushes with any kind of shimmer as they can sometimes make your cheeks look overly shiny. However, this Benefit Coralista blush has more of a sheen than a shimmer and it makes your face come alive. It looks amazing against a tan by adding a freshness to the face and it goes on very smoothly. I only needed a tiny bit to give the right amount of colour so I think the product will last for a long time. I also noticed that this blush really brought out my blue eye colour so that's a huge bonus! I think this blush would suit just about any skintone. I know in the past people have said that it's what Nars Orgasm blush should have been and I totally agree with that. I've always thought that Nars Orgasm was over-hyped and I really didn't like the glitter particles that were very visible on the skin once applied.
Benefit Gilded pencil is definitely a multi-use product because it can be used as an eyeshadow base, lightly as a brow highlight, on the inner corners of the eyes and you can also apply it to the back of the hand and then pat it on the cheekbones for a golden highlight on your cheekbones. You can also pat it over any lipsticks and blend to create a nice golden sheen on your lips. For these reasons, it would be great for travelling. I think this would look great on tanned skin (as with most things!). The pencil is soft so it doesn't drag on your skin, it applies smoothly and lasts all day. It's highly pigmented so you really don't need alot of it and it looks amazing when you line your lashline and waterline with it for a golden bronzey look. The gold reflects in this and the 'tangerine' gold colour suggests to me that it would look better on medium to dark skintones.

I would have to say that my favourite out of all of these has to be the Coralista blush because it's such a perfect colour.
Have you tried any of these products? What is your perfect colour of blush for summer?

Monday, 19 April 2010

Good Times/Bad Times

GOOD TIMES

1) We met with our wedding photographer on Saturday and he is amazing! He asked loads of questions and brought up things I didn't even think of before (like having a spare shirt for chris in case one of the groomsmen sprays champagne on him and spare shoes for walking on the beach!). We had a look through his portfolio and it's so impressive, you can view some of his work here. He is very imaginative about how he takes his shots so I am really excited to see what he comes up with! He was convinced that Chris looked exactly like Jenson Button, the racing driver, but you guys can decide for yourselves...

Here's Jenson....

And here's my gorgeous fiance, Chris...
2) I started the Slim Fast plan last week so I'm 8 days in and it's going really well. Basically, I have a shake for breakfast, then a healthy snack (anything that's around 100 calories), then a shake for lunch, then another snack, the a proper meal for dinner (max of 600 cals) then you can have a low calorie dessert. I also go to the gym 4 times a week and do a mix of cardio and weights for an hour each time. I just weighed myself today and I've lost 2lbs in the past week so I'm extremely happy! I have bought another tub of Slim Fast for the next 6 days so I can keep going with my progress. It's not a long term solution but my weightloss was starting to plateau so I just felt like I needed a boost. I am going to keep going with the Slim Fast plan until the wedding. I will let you know how much I've lost in total.
3) Our hamster Wolverine (a.k.a. Wolfey) is still a big hit with us. He is actually alot more switched on than I thought he would be. He is really good at problem solving stuff like moving things around his cage so he can reach food. His favourite treats are the little chocolate drops you get for Hamsters. As you can see, he goes mad over them...
He is becoming more and more used to being handled and Chris is definitely getting very attached to him!

BAD TIMES

1) The downside to Saturday was my meeting with the table dresser for the wedding venue. I had sent her pictures by email outlining what I wanted and even phoned her to make sure we were on the same page. She turned up at the venue late, looking scruffy, nothing had been set up and she hardly took anything with her. There were a couple of things she took out like tall glass vases filled with luminous green slimy stuff that were horrendous, they looked like something out of Ghostbusters!I was just really disappointed at how unprofessional she was and I didn't even bother taking any photos. So the search is now on for a new venue dresser! I'm trying to look on the bright side that I found out now and not closer to the wedding date. Now I can get on with finding the right person for the job.

2) I took a look outside today and it was snowing! (only lightly but still...). I just want summer to be here...I'm sick of all the cold, blustery weather. For a while it seemed like summer had arrived because we had quite a few lovely sunny days and it seemed to be warming up. I can't wait for the time when we can have BBQ's and sit outside!

Friday, 16 April 2010

I Love Retro Glamour!

I don't know about you but I often watch old black and white films in awe. Those women were just so incredibly glamourous and sophisticated! Now I know that it wasn't effortless and they probably worked on their looks till the cows came home but they just make it look so easy! I love the look of the 40's bombshells...fuller, natural looking brows, slightly overdrawn ruby red lipstick, the pin curl look and pale skin. Everything was just so feminine and the clothes really celebrated a woman's curvaceous figure to the max. Here are some of my favourite actresses of that era...Whenever they do 1940's/50's specials on the Biography channel, I always find myself watching them because Hollywood just isn't the same anymore and that golden era has long gone. The look of that era was perfectly polished and flawless and I guess, being a perfectionist myself, that's what appeals to me. The colours worn in the 40's were fairly basic but they worked on pretty much everyone. I recently found out that a classic trick that Hollywood directors used to get that glowy, soft focus look to the film stars on screen was to smear a very thin layer of vaseline on the camera lens!

The 50's introduced actresses like Marilyn Monroe and Audrey Hepburn, the makeup looks were similar but the hairstyles were slightly more relaxed. I'm always amazed when I hear about all the makeup tricks that Marilyn used to sculpt her face for the silver screen. Even if you would never wear this kind of look, I still think this video by Kandee The Makeup Artist is amazing and she really captures Marilyn's look. Kandee goes through the ways that Marilyn used to contour her nose to change it's shape and I think it's fascinating! I am still trying to perfect this eye look (red lipstick doesn't suit me so I just try to copy the eye makeup because I think it's really beautiful).



I would love for my makeup artist to do something similar to this on my eyes for my wedding day. It's just such a classic look, it never dates and it always looks stunning. I have my trial with her in June so I will take lots of pictures so you guys can see how that turns out!

I'm actually off to the wedding venue in Loch Lomond tomorrow to try out different decoration ideas so I'm really excited about that! I will be taking lots of photos so I will try and post them in the next few days.

Keeping with the vintage theme of this post, I got my hair comb for my wedding day from a really great website http://www.the-little-things-in-life.co.uk/. They are based in the UK and do vintage-style wedding jewellery and tiaras so if you are looking for anything like that for your big day...check it out. The prices are amazingly reasonable compared to wedding shops where the prices can be astronomical! Even if you're not getting married and you love vintage jewellery, you might find something there that you like, they have loads of cute things. I especially love their really girly Jewellery Stands:

I was recently informed by one of my lovely friends, Fiona, that there is now a shop called The Closet on Jopp's Lane in Aberdeen that sells and hires out vintage clothing and accessories! I need to rush down there asap because I would love to pick up some accessories to add some retro touches to my outfits. Everything in the shop is hand picked so they don't buy things in bulk and they sometimes hold open nights so you and your friends can have a look around whilst sipping on some yummy cocktails. I would love to own some bonafide vintage items!
So which era inspires you the most? Are you a fan of vintage clothing and accessories?