Sick Note!

Hello my regular blog visitors, you might have noticed I’ve been a little MIA these last few days, this is because I’m sick – some virus and throat infection thing – it’s “summer” people, this shouldn’t be happening! I barely managed to muster together a blog post yesterday – so in the interest of quality, not quantity, I’m giving myself a few days off.

I’m also cold turkey with the make up – 5 days clean, it’s killing me, but should be doing my skin the world of good, plus my trusted Eight Hour Cream is helping with the sore nose and lips.

I have my survival kit and hopefully I’ll be back up and running in a few days.

In the mean time to keep all you make up addicts going here’s a few of my favourite posts you might not have caught first time around…

Check out my Holiday Essentials, Probably the World’s best Bronzer and my all time favourite Blusher.

Now, it’s back to copious amounts of magazines, slushy movies and vintage O.C.

Packed To Go?

Leaving on a jet plane? Not before you’ve checked out MAC’s new limited edition travel collection – Packed To Go!

The collection contains everything you should need to fill your chic travel make up bag. Featuring gorgeous face kits, eye, cheek and lip trios and brush bags – perfect for those all important touch ups on the go.

It’s a while since I’ve been super excited by one of Mac’s collections, but this one’s ticking all the boxes. Look in a Box kits are pretty genius and as the name suggests contains everything you need to create a gorgeous themed look… in one box. The eyes, the lips, the cheeks – it’s all taken care of, everything except the foundation and at £36.50, they’re pretty good value.

  • Girl Next Door – 2 Eye Shadows in Grand Entrance and Smoke & Diamonds, Iridescent Powder in Belightful, Cremesheen Glass in Deelight and Zoom Lash Mascara in Zoom Black
  • A Very Stylish Girl – 2 Eye Shadow in Dreammaker and Glamour Check, Bronzing Powder in Golden, Cremesheen Glass in Looks Like Sin and Zoom Lash Mascara in Zoomblack
  • Rocker Chick – 2 Eye Shadow in Electra and Black Tied, Lipstick in Hue, Lipglass in Oyster Girl, Eye Kohl in Smolder and Dazzle Lash Mascara in Black Dazzle

Packed to go Eye products

  • Packed to Go: Assorted Black Eyeliners – Power Point Eye Pencil in Engraved, Kohl Power Eye Pencil in Feline and Penultimate Eye Liner in Rapidblack £27.50
  • Packed to Go: 6 Warm Smoky Eyeshadows – Shroom, Naked Lunch, Greensmoke, Tempting, Showstopper and Stormy Love £29.50
  • Packed to Go: 6 Cool Smoky Eyeshadows – Satin Taupe, Beauty Marked, Carbon, Seedy Pearl, Tendersmoke and A Brown Suit £29.50

Packed to go Lip products

  • Packed to Go: Lipstick in Pretty Please, Plumful and Hug Me £28.5o
  • MAC Packed to Go: Cremesheens in Boy Bait, Over Indulgence and Double Dare £32.50
  • MAC Packed to Go: Lipglasses in C-Thru, Lust and Cultured £27.50

 

 

MAC Packed to Go: 4 Lips & Pressed Powder – contains Lipglosses in Poetic License, Rosehips, Riviera Ready and Quick Change along with Iridescent Powder in Belightful £29.50

Brushes

  • Packed to Go: 5 Define & Blend Brushes – 129SE Powder/Blush Brush, 190SE Foundation Brush, 224 SE Tapered Blending Brush, 242SE Shader Brush and the 266 SE Small Angle Brush £39.50
  • Packed to Go: 5 Shape & Perfect Brush Bag – 168SE Large Angled Contour Brush, 187SE Duo Fibre Brush, 212SE Flat Definer Brush and 275SE Medium Angled Shading Brush £39.50

And even if you’re not travelling, in fact, especially if you’re not travelling you deserve a little treat and some of these sets are really good value.  Available online.

My all time TOP 5

Or should I say my long term top 5, cos let’s face it, you never know who, I mean what is around the corner… I’m sure there’s some gems out there I haven’t tried yet.  Now choosing just five is tough, if I’m realistic it’s more like 55, but the following are firmly inducted in my beauty hall of fame….

Givenchy Eyebrow Show

“It’s all about the eyebrows!” Fast becoming my catch phrase because I Love, Love, LOVE eyebrows. This Givenchy pencil has saved my life after my beloved Clinique one was discontinued. I searched for a replacement, testing and buying almost every brow pencil in existence – No7, YSL, Benefit, Rimmel, Lancôme, Mac. It’s been a long and expensive process. You see, I like a good old fashioned pencil, I’m not a fan of these sudo, automatic non-pencil pencils that have popped up everywhere. I don’t like ones that are too creamy, but I do like ones that have a brush on the end. Finally I’ve found the right shade and texture with Givenchy. Just as well since I’ve been going through the painsaking process of growing my eye brows out. As a teenager I fell victim to over-tweezing (something I could wax lyrical about and is best left for another post).  It’s great for filling in the gaps. The powdery texture looks very natural and last all day, plus the brush on the end is great for sculpting.

£15 Available in three shades, I wear Brown

 Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream

This needs little introduction. The cult classic, developed by Ms Arden herself over 70 years ago, has really stood the test of time. If I was stuck on a desert island, this is all I’d need (this and some food, water and wine). It really is a wonder product.  This skincare classic helps to soothe, restore, soften and protect dry or mildly irritated skin. It has so many uses… I apply it to eye brows at night to help hold them in place, it’s fantastic on dry lips and can be dabbed onto cheek and brow bones as a highlighter. I have one in my bedside table and one in my handbag so I’m never without – it lasts and last and lasts too!

50mls approx. £20 Available in various sizes, tubes and pots

Guerlain Terracota Four Season Bronzing Powder

When it comes to bronzers, I’ve played the field a little, but with Guerlain Four Season Bronzing Powder I’ve found my match. The caramel hues are so far away from the orange shades we’re used to. It’s very strongly pigmented so a little goes a long way and the finely milled powder applies like a dream, so smooth and flawless. There’s no glitter or sparkle, yet it’s not too matte, more of a satin finish I’d say. What makes it one of my all time favourites is that the four shades take you through the year, no need to change to a lighter one in the winter or darker in the summer; it’s like a customisable palette. Great for contouring and the lighter shade can be used as a touch up powder. Read full review here.

Available from Debenhams and House of Fraser £46

YSL Touche Eclat

Another that needs little introduction. For years YSL’s iconic Touche Eclat has been the go-to concealer for millions of women around the World. Another multi use product – it’s a highlighter, a concealer, a touch up pen. There are lots of competitors in that market, but for me it’s still unrivalled. A sold member of my beauty hall of fame; there’s a reason that one pen is sold every 10 seconds! 

RRP £24 but dicounted prices on CheapSmells.com

Lancôme Hypnose Mascara


I have been using Lancôme’s mascaras since I was 13. From Defincils, Amplicils, Hypnose and Hypnose drama, it seemed each offering got better and better.  From time to time my eye has wondered (with Benefit Bad Gal, Clinique’s High Impact and Diorshow), but I always return to my faithful Hypnose. For me, the key is in the brush  – it’s just the right size, not too clumpy and no other mascara creates volume like it. It can be layered for maximum impact, doesn’t smudge or clump and lasts all day.  I prefer the standard Hypnose but Hypnose Drama is pretty good too. It also has the royal seal of approval – believed to be Kate Middleton’s wedding mascara of choice.

£20.45

So that’s my top 5, what’s yours?

17’s Miami Pop Bronzer – Possibly The World’s Worst Bronzer?

I blogged a while back about my excitement for 17’s impending summer collection, Miami Pop. A super cute amd colourful summer range inspired by Miami’s iconic Ocean Drive.  A sucker for all things summer, it sounded right up my street. I expected the jewel in the crown to be the Miami Pop Bronzer, a gold, baked bronzer with a marbled shimmer… how wrong I was.

 

I skipped along to Boots on launch day and was thoroughly DISAPPOINTED. Now I don’t say that very often, but the Miami Pop Bronzer is awful. It’s everything a bronzer shouldn’t be – ORANGE, GOLD and SPARKLY. It reminds me of really bad fake tan. I’m all for a bit of shimmer, especially in the summer months. I expected this would be a great holiday buy, but it’s not shimmery, it’s fully shiny and sparkly. Put it this way, the only people likely to wear this bronzer are Katie Price and the cast of Geordie Shore!

I swatched a little on my hand – looks like I’ve been tangoed.

Imagine what it would look like on your face! Not a good example for 17’s target audience!

On a positive note, the nail varnishes are cute and the Hot Pink Lipgloss  £3.99 is very nice – juicy, highly pigmented and super shiny.

New Beauty Crush: Rosie Huntington-Whiteley

Girl of the moment Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, my new beauty, style and general all round girl crush.

When it comes to make up, Rosie knows what suits her and sticks to it – I love the simplicity of her make up. Her signature look centres around sultry smokey eyes and bronzed skin. Despite having the biggest and best lips in the business, Rosie doesn’t play up to them. I’d be tempted to colour in that pout all kinds of fuchsias and reds, but she keeps it simple with hues of nude and browny-pinks.

Here’s how to create the look.

Base

Her base is glowing and dewy. I’d imagine she starts off with a luminous primer like Clarin’s beauty flash balm then adds a subtle base colour, something like Chanel’s Vitalumiere Aqua foundation. With that flawless skin, I doubt she needs concealer, but a couple clicks of a highlighter or under eye concealer like YSL’s touché éclat will correct any dull areas – I think there’s evidence of some in the inner eye area – which works great to open and brighten the eye.

Cheeks

Not one for bright blushers, Rosie opts for bronzer and highlighter instead. Either she’s blessed with the most amazing cheekbones EVER or there’s some clever contouring going on here – I choose to believe it’s the later. Take a multi toned bronzing powder, something like Guerlain’s Terracota Four Seasons and contour the natural lines around your cheeks, forehead and chin. A dab of liquid highlighter on the top of cheek bones would accentuate the tan and draw attention to the chizzled features. Finish with a light dusting of a peachy/pink powder blush to add a touch of colour to apples of the cheeks.

Eyes

Brows are full and combed slightly upwards, which I love. For the smokey eye Rosie opt for gold and bronzey brown eye shadows rather than the standard black and greys. An eye quad or a palette would work best to mix and match for the shade that suits. I have a great one by Frontcover that contains some gorgeous bronzey hues. The intensity of the smokey eye varies – smudge shadow along the lid and up to the crease, if you’re feeling adventurous, take it higher up to the brow bone. Smudge some shimmery brown or bronze under the lower lash line and in the inner eye. Work in a brown or black eye liner.

For some added va-va-voom, a small kitten flick created with a gel or liquid liner looks very sexy. Finish with lashings of mascara.

Lips

Let’s face it, lips like that don’t need much dressing up. A smudge of Vaseline and they’re good to go! They’re generally kept natural, I really don’t think she wears much lipstick – maybe just a hint of sheer colour, something like a nude or dirty rose. She’s more a lipbalm kinda girl.

 WORD OF WARNING: Trying to recreate the look of one of the best looking women in the World, may lead to self esteem issues!

Bargain Boots Treats… Revlon, Ruby and Millie and No7

“I’m just popping to Boots”, fateful words if ever I heard them. I pop in for some shampoo and emerge an hour later… two bags heavier and twenty quid lighter. But, my conscience and my purse love it when there’s a good deal or two to be had.

Starting with a Ruby and Millie Duo Shadow. There’s currently a whopping 75% off all Ruby and Mille cosmetics and this smokey eye shadow in purple cost just £3.00. I’ve been looking for the perfect purple shadow for a while and this could be it. The duo consists of two halves: a cream blue base and a metallic purple powder. It’s a nice break from my usual grey smokey eye and works perfectly with green, hazel and blue eyes. The powder shadow has a velvety texture with an almost two-tone metallic finish, looks great when the light catches it.

I’m really loving Revlon right now. I think their lipglosses and nail polishes are top class, but that’s as far as I’ve ventured… until now. This Bronzer caught my eye because it had a giant £2 off sticker (£7.99 down to £5.99) but when I picked it up for further inspection I was very impressed by the colour and consistency. I’d describe it as a medium warm bronzer infused with subtle golden shimmer, for a luminous finish. The powder is fine and unlike other bronzers around that price point, it’s not too powdery and doesn’t leave a residue all over the compact, or your face.

I would compare it to cult classic Nars Laguna Bronzing powder, which I really like but is too prone to braking and crumbling…

Heavily swatched on my arm, Nars right, Revlon left.

A little lighter than laguna, but similar nonetheless. The compact is really handy too for popping in your bag, it includes a mirror and useless little brush (which will do in the pub toilets for that quick top up).

And for my last treat… After buying the shadow and bronzer I got one of those £5 off No7 vouchers, which I immediately redeemed against a cute nail polish I’ve had my eye on. Still feeling the Purple vibe, I plumped for a stay perfect nail polish in Vivid Violet. A glossy colour with a metallic finish, very 70s chic! This is what it looks like with two quick coats, when I do my full hand I think it will need three.

£2.00 with the voucher, normally £7.

Not bad, huh? My mini haul set me back just £10.99.

No7 Summer Limited Edition Sundowner Collection

Apparently today is the first day of summer and with temperatures set to reach the mid 20s later this week, I’m well and truly in the summer swing. As too are the make up counters with limited edition summer collections popping up all over the shop. No7’s new Sundowner Collection really caught my eye, not only is it summery, but it has a 70s vibe too – bonus!

No7 Sultry Glow Bronzer £13

Become a bronzed beach babe with this three toned palette. The bronzer is made up of ultra fine powders, which give it a light texture, perfect for blending and building colour. At first look, the terracotta shade looks a bit too red, but the three shades blend perfectly together for a mid toned, natural looking bronzer. I love the 70s sunset and leaf design but don’t love the cardboard palette.

Sunset Metallic Eye Quad Palette  £13

A cocktail of four richly pigmented bronzed metallic shades, a perfect accompaniments to bronzed skin. The shadows are quite rich and creamy, On the down side, they’re housed in another cardboard palette… No7 STOP cutting corners.

Stay Perfect Nail Polishes £10

Available in Sultry Sands (pictured), light metallic gold shade that will look perfect with a tan and Golden Palms, a glamourous gold bronze.

Lipglosses £10

Enjoy a balmy night out by the shore with show off sultry lips. No7’s new intensely moisturising gloss leaves lips with a brilliant shine and feeling super soft and kissable. Available in two shades, Sultry Nude and Sultry Red.

Overall a cute summer offering from No7, with a very similar vibe to 17’s Miami Pop collection due out later this month. Available in Boots stores now, plus take advantage of their (nearly always on) 3 for 2 offer.