Friday, 23 January 2015

One Sweep Wonders



You know those days when you spend a bit too long watching youtube videos while you're eating your breakfast and then only have ten minutes to shower, dress and do your makeup? (Yep, that's everyday for me too...) Or when you're about to reach for your blending brush, but think the Kardashian-esqe look you were planning might be a bit OTT for a normal day at the office? Bring in the one sweep wonders. A selection of shadows that you can slick across your lid in one fell swoop and instantly look more put together with minimal effort - leaving you with more time to pick out a street style blog worthy outfit (okay, or just wear all black errythang again) or grab a coffee on your way out. Here's my pick of the best one sweep shadows: three different formulas, three different shades of neutral, one seriously quick everyday makeup look.

Benefit Creaseless Cream Eyeshadow in Birthday Suit - A staple in my makeup bag since I was 15, I've lost count of how many times I've repurchased this and there's a good reason for that. A suit-all bronzey taupe with a subtle shimmer which really opens your eyes up and makes you look more awake. It stays put for a good 8 hours and they're not lying, it never creases.

MAC Woodwinked - I'm betting that a lot of you will have this little gem stashed away in your beauty drawer somewhere! One's of MAC's most talked about shadows, it's easy to see why - the formula is buttery and applies like a dream, and the coppery-brown shade is one of my all time favourites to wear alone on my lids.

By Terry Ombre Blackstar in Bronze Moon - A relatively new addition to my makeup bag, I'd been coveting this for quite some time but every time I was in a Space NK they'd sold out! It was definitely worth the wait though as it's such a lovely shade of bronze and the packaging is gorgeous. This is possibly my favourite of the three as one quick swipe does the trick, and after giving you just enough time to smudge it out a little bit with your fingertip it doesn't budge until you reach for your evening cleanser.

Just pair with lashings of mascara and a pinky-nude lip (see my current favourite here) and you're ready for whatever the day throws at you! Do you have a go-to shadow for days when you're pushed for time?

Sunday, 21 December 2014

Faith In Nature Shampoo & Conditioner





Is it just me that has a mini existential crisis when I'm close to finishing my current shampoo and conditioner? (hashtag first world problems) Trying to eek out the last squirts in the bottles while pondering what to do now - do I repurchase or was it just not quite volumising/highlight-enhancing/frizz-taming enough? Should I go back to an old favourite or try something new? And what about all those half finished bottles at the back of my bathroom cabinet?! It's enough to make a girl break down and contemplate doing a Britney circa 2007...

So when Faith In Nature offered me the chance to try some of their products out just as I was coming to the end of my latest Joico tubes it was perfect timing - and saved me from a 30 minute shelf-staring exercise in the John Lewis beauty department.

I opted for the Pomegranate & Rooibos Shampoo and Conditioner which both smell gorgeous - naturally fresh and fruity. All Faith In Nature products are completely organic, vegan, and best of all, 100% cruelty-free which is something I'm really trying to be more aware of when shopping now, especially as so many brands who were once cruelty-free have unfortunately started testing on animals in certain countries.

Once I've used these I feel as if my hair is what it should naturally be like - shiny, light as a feather, and squeaky clean. I think this is because all of Faith In Nature's products are natural - there's no artificial chemicals that leave any residue or build up in your hair. The shampoo doesn't lather as much as others, as you'd expect from an organic product, and while this takes a few washes to get used to I didn't find this was a problem at all - I've grown to like the more natural cleansing feel it gives. The conditioner was great at smoothing and detangling my hair, which gets knotty easily as it's long and quite fine. I also found the products great to take to the gym with me as the bottles are light and they made my hair feel amazingly clean and fresh after a (not-so) strenuous yoga class or my bi-monthly run (I wish I could say that was an exaggeration and really I run every other day but actually it's probably quite accurate...).

I've since spotted Faith In Nature products in my local As Nature Intended store and can never resist having a browse of the range when I pop in to do some food shopping. My hair definitely feels and looks better for using a more natural shampoo and conditioner, and although the bottles are getting emptier and I'm getting that itch to buy something new again, I think I'll definitely be going back to Faith In Nature in between other brands to give my hair a well needed break from those nasty chemicals! 

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

You spent HOW much on a lipstick? | Tom Ford Spanish Pink


And the award for the most overpriced item of makeup goes to... The RRP of a Tom Ford Lip Colour is so downright ridiculous that I'm not even going to type it, mainly because I'm trying to pretend to myself that I didn't actually spend more money on a lipstick than I would on my weekly food shop. It's beautiful, yes, but I'm not totally convinced it was worth parting with so much cash - so what better way to try and justify a purchase than to blog about it?

First things first, the packaging. The tube is so gorgeous that I've been showing it off to literally everyone - cue squeals from my best friends and an eye-roll from my boyfriend - and of course there's that oh so satisfying click when you close the lid that you get with all the best lipsticks.

I had a bit of a hard time choosing a colour and the sales guy let out an audible sigh after I changed my mind for the third time while he was trying to get me to pay, but in the end I went for Spanish Pink, the classic Tom Ford 'my-lips-but-better' (no, but like, really better) shade. I probably didn't need another nude-pink MLBB lipstick but if I was going to spend the best part of £40 then I at least wanted something I'd get a lot of wear out of.

The formula is creamy and glides on to the lips easily - if only I could bear to use it from the front rather than the back to avoid ruining that perfect T - and while I'll be trying my best to ignore the Tom Ford counter and its extortionate prices for the foreseeable, these lipsticks are the ultimate treat-yourself purchase.

Next on my list is Pink Dusk - I better start saving...

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Scent City Launch | Alice and Peter Wicked Berry Perfume Review


Grab a cup of tea and get settled into the sofa girls, because today it's new launch time. And believe me when I tell you, it's a good'un. I've been looking forward to the launch of niche perfume retailer Scent City for quite some time now, as I think the idea behind the creation is a solid and original one. Based in London, Scent City is an online boutique specialising in niche perfumes for both men and women, as well as luxury fragrances for the home.

Scent City's promotional material really impressed me - the deep purple designs look sleek and sophisticated which embodies the brand perfectly. There's several different models used in their marketing, each of which have a distinct personality which is related to certain types of fragrances - for example, Ms Romance is 'Loving, with floral notes'. I think this is a really clever idea as you can pick a perfume based on the emotions you'd like it to make you feel or the situations in which you want to wear it the most.

One of the most exciting niche brands that is available from Scent City in my opinion is Alice and Peter. A small but perfectly formed collection of unique luxury perfumes, adorably packaged, currently exclusive to Scent City in the UK. Scent City kindly offered to gift me one of Alice and Peter's fragrances to try out so I could get a better idea of the types of perfume designers that will be stocked on the website. Alice and Peter's line contains five gorgeous scents inspired by cupcakes and confectionery - sweets and perfume, what's not to like? All five sounded gorgeous (Showy Toffee and Fancy Choco anyone?) but the one I liked the sound of most was Wicked Berry*. My favourite fragrances are either floral or fruity, and this combined them both! At first spray, the citrus head notes mix with the berry scents and the perfume smells entirely fruity. However, this soon clears and the floral notes at the heart of the perfume are revealed. Lilac and blackberry are the most noticeable heart notes, and the scent reminds me slightly of my favourite childhood sweets, Parma Violets! Rose, freesia and raspberry notes are also detectable, and throughout the day the base notes of vanilla, amber, and white musk start to come through. I've really grown to like this perfume as it's such a unique scent, it makes me feel all summery, and of course, the bottle is the cutest!

As with all Alice and Peter products, Wicked Berry retails at £40 for 30ml - a little on the expensive side but considering the hard-to-get-hold-of designer brand and the quality I think it's a fair price. The longevity is more impressive than most of my perfumes, it's noticeable on the skin for over 10 hours, however it does start to fade after 5 or 6.

The perfume arrived in a large box and was very well protected with polystyrene. I was really pleased to see this, as the last few times I've bought perfumes online they've been delivered in a small parcel with absolutely no protective packaging whatsoever.

I'll certainly be ordering from Scent City in the future as I think it's a fantastic concept for a brand and the service/correspondence I've recieved from them has been second to none. By the time you've read this post Scent City will have officially launched and you can check them out at www.thescentcity.com. You can also follow Scent City on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram!




*This product was sent to me for consideration by Scent City. All reviews are always 100% honest.

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Foundation Files: The Glow Getter



In my last Foundation Files post I showed you a brilliant budget base, but today I’m going to be talking about a product that makes my bank balance wince a little bit every time I repurchase. Don’t turn away just yet though, because this one is definitely worth the money. It’s not the most expensive foundation on the market (at £30.50 it's far from it!) but it's still one you might want to wait until payday for. Nars Sheer Glow has been raved about by many a beauty blogger but I'm not ashamed to follow the crowd on this one because it's a strong contender for my all time favourite foundation.

The coverage is medium and buildable, but it always feels light on the skin and never cakey, even in summer when things can get a little sweaty... I was matched to the shade Deauville which is almost exactly my natural skin colour, and the shade range is relatively wide so most people should be able to find their perfect match. It looks so natural and makes my skin look flawless - which let me tell you, is a preeetty big task at the moment! It's also perfect for nights out or special occasions as it's SPF free - so you won't be mistaken for Casper the ghost when people are getting a bit too flash-happy with their cameras! Sheer Glow lasts well on my skin - I'll sometimes touch it up in the late afternoon but once I have it looks as fresh as it did in the morning.

The only thing I don't like about this foundation is the fact it doesn't come with a pump (why Nars, why?!). Of course, you can buy a pump separately for only a couple of pounds, but the trouble I had was finding one. They seemed to be out of stock everywhere, for months on end! I did finally get my hands on one and it makes application much easier, but I'd like to see Nars incorporate a pump into an actual lid for the bottle, even if this still would cost extra. Although the pump has a lock so there's no accidental spillages, I just think it looks like I've lost the proper lid for the bottle (or is that just me being fussy?). Fussiness aside, Nars Sheer Glow really does deserve the hype and I'm sure its Holy Grail status in the beauty world will be firmly cemented for many years to come - I know I'll be repurchasing over and over again!