Sunday, 10 August 2014

A Product | Mac Prep and Prime Highlighter.

Now, where do I begin with the MAC Prep and Prime Highlighter? I am still very new to the whole highlighting and contouring malarkey, and have been dabbling around with many different products. Previously, I have been using my concealer to highlight under the eyes, around my nose and slightly on the forehead. However, I did not always notice much of a difference.

It was during one of my numerous YouTube tutorial watching sessions that I heard about the MAC Prep and Prime Highlighter in ‘Light Boost’, and from the moment of first application I was won over.

The product is dispensed by twisting up the base of the pen, where it comes out in the bristles. This makes applying the product easy and precise. ‘Light Boost’ is a thin consistency, which means that it is really easy to blend. I have been using my Beauty Blender to mix the product into my foundation seamlessly. There are three other shades available, but the yellow tone in ‘Light Boost’ makes is perfect for illuminating the skin for a natural finish.

I have been using this product in conjunction with my concealer; however, I also use the MAC Prep and Prime Highlighter on its own as a sheer coverage concealer and brightening. I tend to use this on its own when I am having a good skin day, along with my Benefit Big Easy.

One of the only downsides I have found with this product so far is that it can get very messy. The product can end up all around the tip of the pen, so after every use I just use a tissue to wipe off the excess.

I would highly recommend this product, particularly for those who are new to highlighting (like me) and are looking for an easy to use highlighting product!

Have you tried the MAC Prep and Prime Highlighter? What did you think?

Sunday, 3 August 2014

My top picks for summer time lips!

That magical time of year is upon us. Sunshine, BBQs, cider, tan lines all mean that it is summer! Summer is the time of year when I ditch the foundation and ‘Russian Red’ replacing with those lighter bases and pink glosses.

For the last 3 weeks I have found myself reaching for these three lip products to finish up my looks. They are all pink, fresh and scream summer!

The first product is a new one for me. I was lucky enough to receive it as a birthday present from one of my very good friends. I have seen the Clarins Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector on various blogs, but I have never tried it until now. I have got the shade ‘Apricot Shimmer’ which is a gorgeous baby pink. The product had a very creamy texture, and applies giving a sheer colour. It is perfect for an easy summer day and has all those nourishing qualities all lip products should.

My second pick is a Tanya Burr lipgloss in the shade ‘Picnic in the Park’. Tanya Burr is probably one of the first YouTubers who I subscribed to, and when she announced she was releasing a line of nail varnished and nail polishes, I was intrigued. I ordered two, and the first thing that struck me was the smell. It literally smells like strawberries and cream. This gloss is a much brighter pink and the colour is much more pigmented than the Clarins. I have found that I need to pat in the gloss to make sure I get even coverage, but once it’s there it lasts a good few hours.

My final product is a bit of a blast from the past. The NARS Lip Lacquer in the shade ‘Chelsea Girls’ has been in my collection for a while now, but I have been giving it a wide berth. The main reason for this is I find it really hard to apply from the pot. However, as I was putting together a smokey eye, it cropped up on my radar. Once I applied it, I fell in love with the product all over again. The colour is more of a peachy-pink which creates more of a nude lip look. It is a great all rounder, and I believe it pretty much goes with every eye look and skin tone.

Have you tried any of these products? What are your favourite picks for summer?

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Arbonne - A product review

This week, I was lucky enough to have been given a couple of products to try from the company Arbonne*. I had never heard of this company before, but it works a bit like an Avon, you have your friendly local consultant, or you can order online with a consultant’s code.

I was given the It’s a Long Story Mascara and the eyeliner in the shade Ebony.

Let’s begin with the Eyeliner (£17). This product comes in a crème stick formula, not very dissimilar to the Avon Glimmerstick. It applies very smoothly, with no tugging or pulling, and blends out easily. The colour is not so intense on first application, but it can be built up if you are looking for a harsher black line. This Arbonne eyeliner also comes with a very handy sharpener at the end, so it is really easy to maintain a point. I did like this eyeliner, however, I think that there are others on the market which are cheaper, that will do as good a job!

I was more impressed with the mascara I was given. The ‘It’s a Long Story’ Mascara (£25) is one of Arbonne’s newest products.  The applicator wand is made up of silicone spikes arranged in a squareish formation. There are also some spikes on the very tip of the wand, which are useful to separate lashes. As consistencies go, this mascara is very thin, which makes it prefect for creating spidery lashes. I found that it did give my lashes a dramatic lengthened look and did not clump them together. It also worked great for my lower lash line, and I loved the end result.

Overall, although I liked these products (particularly the mascara), the only reservation I have about them is the price. They are very expensive. Arbonne is cruelty free and try to use as natural ingredients as possible, so if you like these kinds of brands this may be one you want to give a try!

Have you tried any Arbonne products? Which ones would you recommend?

If you would like to order any products from the website,, you can use the consultant ID: 441218632. Contact consultant Emma Richardson at if you are intrigued and she will happily arrange for some samples to be sent over to you!

*Disclaimer: Although I was given these products free of charge, the thoughts and opinions expressed in this blog entry are all my own. I was not paid to write this post or to feature these products.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Top 5 According to......Me!

I’ve wanted to write a series like this for a long time, and I thought it only apt that I start with myself. We all have different routines, techniques and favourite or well used products. Reading about what different people wear, use and how they apply is what makes beauty blogging great, and what makes us all come back for more.

The plan with this series is to take you through a variety of people’s top 5 beauty products. You never know, it might show you something new, or rediscover old favourites.

So here are my top 5, in no particular order:

1.    A decent cleanser. I can have really spot prone skin, so it is important for me to keep up a regular skin care routine. At the minute I have been loving this First Aid Beauty Skin Rescue Deep Cleanser with Red Clay. It has a rather peculiar smell, and quite a thick texture when it comes out of the bottle. However, once mixed with water it becomes a milky consistency and leaves the skin feeling fresh and clear.

2.    Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion. The rest of my top 5 is focussed around the eyes. During the week when I am at work, I do not bother with base. I always start with this Primer Potion. My eye lids can be oily and eyeshadow only lasts a few hours without this miracle product. When I use this, my eyeshadow is not only brighter and more pigmented, but also lasts all day. As you can see, mine is very well loved however one tube lasts a really long time.

3.    Urban Decay Naked palette. I have only had this since Christmas but I think I have used it pretty much every single day since. It is the perfect collection of natural eyeshadow colours, 10 shimmer and 2 matte. You can create all sorts of looks with these eyeshadows, daytime to evening. All of the shadows are packed with pigment and, although I know some people have had different experiences, I find there is little fallout. It is also perfect for those who are just starting to experiment with makeup.

4.    MAC 217 Blending Brush. If you only ever buy one eyeshadow brush, this has to be the one! It is the ultimate in eyeshadow brushes. Not only does it help to blend eyeshadows with ease, but it can also be used to apply and pack on colour. The 217 is so versatile, and I have even used it before to blend out my concealer. I actually have 2 of these because they are so amazing!

5.    Mascara. As a blonde haired lady, although my eyelashes are quite thick, they are not very visible. I truly believe that a good mascara is one of the most important products you can own. There is such a variety available, all for different looks and there are decent ones available for all budgets. I have been using this Arbonne It’s a Long Story Mascara – expect an in depth review on the blog next week!

So there you have it, my top 5. Have you tried any of these? What did you think? Which products would make it onto your top 5?

Sunday, 29 June 2014

My June 2014 Favourites!

On this bright and sunny weekend, I thought I would bring you a ‘favourites’ post. I had a few random bits and pieces that I really wanted to share, so I pulled them all together to write about at once.

The first item I want to talk about is this gorgeous scented candle from Lily Flame, in ‘Party Time’ (£12). This is going to sound a bit strange, but the first thing I loved about this candle was the fact it was white. When I buy candles, they have to be the same colour as the colour scheme of the room – resulting in me, more often than not, putting down a lovely scent for the sole reason that it is not the right colour. The fragrance is musky, without being over powering, with zesty undertones. It has a masculine feel that is perfect for me! I have put this candle in my bedroom and the smell fills the room! I will definitely be buying more from Lily Flame!

It will come as no surprise to see that my beauty favourites today come from MAC. I featured both of these in my last post (Lazy weekend makeup) and I have found myself reaching for these frequently this month. The first is MAC’s Bronzing Powder in the shade ‘Golden’ (£20). I am quite a fair skinned lady, and I have found this powder gives the perfect hint of warmth, without looking dirty or orange. In the pan, there are visible flakes of shimmer, but once applied they blend out into the skin giving a sought-after dewy effect.

The lipstick comes in the form of MAC’s ‘Sunny Seoul’ (£15). The fabulous (on-off) weather that we have been experiencing of late, has drawn my eye to the coral shades in my make up collection. I have particularly been reaching for this Cremesheen lipstick. It is the perfect coral with pink undertones. It is bright and summery and matches perfectly to both pink and coral blushes. This lipstick is a great all-rounder. Even if the weather is looking a little dull, ‘Sunny Seoul’ does the job at brightening everything up.

My final favourite is another book. If you are a regular reader of my blog, you will know that I absolutely adore books and I have been lucky enough to have lots of time to read lately. This one is ‘The Luminaries’ by Eleanor Catton. Not only was this novel the longest to ever win the Man Booker Prize (2013), but Catton was also the youngest author to ever receive the prize. The book is set in New Zealand in the 1800’s in a town during the height of the gold rush. It is based around 12 men whose lives are intertwined by woman, fraud, thievery and murder. The style of the language is written in keeping with the time it was set, which did take a bit of getting used to. However, once I got over and used to it, I found myself sailing through the book – I just could not put it down!

So there you have it, my June favourites. Have you tried any of these? What have you been loving in the month of June?

Sunday, 22 June 2014

Lazy Weekend Make-up

Waking up on Saturday morning to a clear sky and bright sun left my boyfriend and I yearning for a garden and a BBQ. So we packed up our things and headed to sunny Kent, where we decided to spend the weekend with his parents (in their garden, eating their BBQ).

Now this heat leaves me with all sorts of problems. No, I am not going to be doing much, but I would still like to look semi decent for any kind of pub gardening which might be going on. These are the products I chose to take with me and use when I was soaking up the rays, and getting sunburnt.

Benefit Big Easy in the shade ‘Light: I grabbed this product because not only is it light wearing, but it also has an SPF 35 which I found very useful.

NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in the shade ‘Vanilla: It’s been a long week; I don’t think I need to say any more.

MAC Mineralise Skin Finish in ‘Light Plus’: I put this over top of the Big Easy to set it in place, and also used it for touch ups during the day.

MAC Eyebrows in ‘Fling: Even when sunbathing, one needs their eyebrows  J       

MAC Bronzing Powder in ‘Golden: I have really gotten into my bronzing recently, and I find this gives me just the right amount of coverage, without looking dirty. It is also slightly shimmery which creates a lovely sun-kissed glow.

MAC Mineralise Blush in ‘Dainty: This colour is a gorgeous pale pink, giving me a light flush of colour, perfect for a lazy day.

No7 Intense Volume Mascara: Normally, I do not go a day without using one of my beloved Urban Decay Naked palettes, but this weekend I just could not be bothered. I found that a few coats of this lovely mascara was enough to define my eyes and work wonders on my lashes.

Maybelline Baby Lips: Extra hydration out in the sun J

MAC Cremesheen Lipstick in ‘Sunny Seoul’: Don’t be silly, I did not wear this lipstick just in the garden, but it did come in handy when we went out to the pub. It is a perfect pinky-coraly shade, which went really well with the blush and bronzer I chose. Look out for a more detailed post on this lipstick in the near future!

Have you tried any of these products? What do you recommend for a hot, sunny afternoon?

Sunday, 8 June 2014

My Secret to Flawless Foundation.

Over the last few years I have tried many different combinations of bases, with a variety of application techniques. Everything from creams, liquids, powders with brushes, fingers and cosmetic sponges.

That is until I found these three miracle products. I have found that when I use this combination, my foundation looks simply flawless, and it is so easy! If you are a regular reader of my blog, you will know that simplicity is a must for me!

I begin the routine by priming my already moisturised skin. For this look, which I would normally save for evening or a special event, I use my Benefit ‘The Porefessional’ primer. I take a pea-sized amount and press it into the skin, starting with my chin and t-zone, then blend the product out to the cheeks. ‘The Porefessional’ is a favourite with many of the bloggers I read, and it deserves all the praise it gets. My pores are not particularly large, but I do find the primer blurs imperfections and provides a great base to easily blend in the foundation.

Now for the foundation. These next two items are probably some of my greatest purchases. The NARS Sheer Glow foundation and Beauty Blender may not be the cheapest items on the market, but boy are they worth the money! NARS Sheer Glow is also infamous in the blogging world. It is a medium to full coverage foundation and is easy to build up over problem areas. I have also found it covers a multitude of skin sins, such as redness or breakouts. A couple of pumps on the back of the hand is all I need, so I find a bottle lasts a long time. When using the Beauty Blender I find it works better damp. I wring it out under the tap and squeeze until the sponge has almost doubled in size. Using a hand towel, I dry the blender off until it is just slightly damp. Then I pick the product up with the Beauty Blender and dab it over my face, working the product into the skin.

Viola! The flawless foundation look is complete! I do like to set with a dusting of my MAC Mineralise Skinfinish, and obviously copious amounts of my concealer is also required to cover my bags!

Have you tried any of these products? How do you create your flawless foundation look?