Wednesday, 31 October 2012

In My Make Up Bag

On my dressing table is my beloved Cath Kidston make up bag which holds all my daily make-up. Oh how I wish I had a full glam team and Kim Kardashian's make up artist but alas I must make do as a one girl band and here's the make up I chop and change between on a daily basis.

Eyes: L'oreal Telescopic. Revlon Grow Luscious. Rimmel Scandaleyes Kohl in Nude. UD Primer Potion. MUA Undressed Palette. Eyelash curler. Estee Lauder Sumptuous Extreme.

Lips: Topshop Brighton Rock. Topshop Whimsical. Topshop Secret Admirer. MAC Please Me. Revlon Lip Butter in Strawberry Shortcake.

Face: MAC Studio Fix. Estee Lauder Double Wear Light. Estee Lauder Double Wear Concealer. L'oreal Lumi Magique. Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer. Rimmel Stay Matte Powder. Laura Mercier Silk Creme Foundation (Sample). Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess. Nars Orgasm. MAC Style blush. MAC Peachykeen blush. MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Soft & Gentle.

What's in your make-up bag?

Sunday, 28 October 2012

I Love Drugstore Make-up Tag

Hey dolls! I've been lacking some blogging inspiration so when I saw this tag on Linsay's blog I thought I'd give it a go. I'm into drugstore make-up and always looking to find a bargain especially if I want to ease my spending habit but it's too far away from pay-day. So here goes, here's the I Love Drugstore Make-up tag...

1. What is your favourite drugstore make-up brand?
My favourite brand at the moment has to be L'oreal. I find that I buy a lot of products from there and they are always good quality. It can be a bit expensive but I tend to buy their products when an offer is on. My latest buy is the Lumi Magique highlighting concealer and it's amazing for brightening up those dark circles.

2. What are your favourite face, cheek and lip products?
Face: Rimmel Stay Matte powder - it's light weight, sets my make-up and doesn't cake.
Cheek: I don't have a cheek product, I use high end blushers or bronzers. Send me your suggestions!
Lip: Revlon lip butters - these are amazing, come in a wide range of colours and are so moisturising. I use Strawberry Shortcake and it gives a great pop of pink.

3. Least favourite product?
Any mascara by Rimmel, I hate their mascaras, hate the consistency, hate the brushes. No no no!

4. What is the best make-up bargain?
The Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer is the best drugstore product I've purchased in a long time. It lasts all day, covers horrid spots and even works for dark circles - and at £3.99, it's a real bargain!

5. What is your favorite underdog product? (Something you love that often gets overlooked?)
I don't have a specific product but I think a lot of drugstore skincare gets overlooked. I am currently using a L'oreal moisturiser and it's very moisturising and does everything it says on the tin, it was £6 in Asda but if it was by a brand like Elemis, it would be £40. High end doesn't always mean better.

6. A drugstore product that is overpriced?
Although I love it, L'oreal (notice a pattern?!) Telescopic Mascara is so overpriced. It retails for £10.99 but I love it so I'm willing to pay for it. If only I could find their brush on a mascara that's around £7.99.

7. Show your best drugstore dupe(s)!!
The best dupe I've ever come across is the MUA Undressed eyeshadow palette which is the double of Urban Decay Naked palette. If anyone is considering the UD palette, try the MUA one first. The eyeshadows are almost exact and just as pigmented. The best part? It's only £4 whereas UD Naked is £36.

8. Drugstore product that isn't worth the hype?
The Balmi lip balms (or EOS in USA), they look far too gimmicky, they're expensive and just a scented lip balm that isn't moisturising. No thank you!

So there we have it. When it comes to make-up, I tend to stick to brands I know and love and whenever I go to buy a new product, I always read up and try out samples first. I tag all of you to do this and leave me a comment below with your link so I can read it and maybe I'll find some new products I haven't tried before!

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Bright Eyes

I know that when I've had a late night, early morning or mixture of the both, my eyes are the first to suffer and dark circles are the first to show up. So when I wake on a morning, I turn to these trusty products to help me out!

Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection concealer: 3.99, L'oreal Lumi Magique highlighting concealer: £8.49, L'oreal Carbon Black Telescopic msacara: 10.99, Rimmel Scandaleyes kohl pencil: £3.99, Eyelash curler: around £2

After I've applied my base, I use the Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection Concealer to cover any blemishes, I have a tiny bit of discolouration on my cheek and this is great for heavier coverage so I use this to create a flawless base. Once that is done, I move onto the eyes, I use the L'oreal Lumi Magique highlighting concealer under the eyes - it has light reflecting properties so perfect for banishing those cruddy dark circles and I just blend it in using my ring finger.

Now for the eyes, I try to open them up as much as possible. I curl my eyelashes first with a non-brand eyelash curler I've had for ages, I do actually need another one. I then apply the L'oreal Carbon Black Telescopic Mascara, I tend to apply more to the top lashes and only a little to the bottom to really open my eyes. The eyelash curlers are the staple item for my eyes, otherwise my eyelashes look so short and stumpy. When the mascara has dried, I run the Rimmel Scandaleyes Kohl Pencil in Nude along my water line, this is brilliant for opening up the eyes and my saviour for early mornings. The pencil lasts all day, I've applied this just on my waterline without mascara on lazy days and in the evening it's still there! All in all, a great product.

What are your favourite eye products?

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Real Techniques Buffing Brush

Say hello to my favourite make-up tool. Taken from the Real Techniques Core Collection, the Buffing Brush has completely changed the way I apply my make-up and I love it!

Real Techniques Core Collection: £21.99

I love pairing this up with my MAC Studio Fix Foundation to create a flawless base. I find that I don't need half as much foundation as I did previously - I pop two pumps onto the back of my hand and find this covers my face perfectly. It's so easy to blend foundation in and literally only takes a minute, it's great for early mornings and when I'm in a rush.

The bristles on the Buffing Brush is super soft and so smooth on the skin. The brushes are made from taklon and they're so easy to clean! I simply run these under hot water, use a shampoo/brush cleaner to clean and leave to dry naturally and within the next day, they're ready to be used again.

I love the Real Techniques brushes and have a few already, the Blush brush is another favourite of mine. I really like how they're colour coded, I think this is really handy especially in a cluttered brush case! I'll definitely be buying more, next on my list is the Expert Face Brush and the Eyes set.

Have you tried any Real Techniques brushes before?

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

A Little Personal

This is a different post from my beauty regulars but it's something I think I need to voice. It's about my weight and about my body confidence.
Firstly I'm going to say that I've written this for me, it's an expression really, it's to help me and I don't appreciate any type of hate so if you have it, please click the X in the corner. I'm writing this because I know some people out there may feel the same. I'm not writing this for any kind of attention, any sympathy or pity. It's purely me just having my say on my blog.

So here we go... Ever since I can remember, I have struggled with my weight - when I was young, I was a healthy child but found at the age of 10 onwards my weight became an issue. I was a big kid, I was bullied and it's something that's stuck with me ever since. Being bullied about your weight is something that sticks with you forever, I've been self conscious about the way I look ever since.
Eventually I thought enough was enough, I invested in an exercise bike, lost a lot of weight (the healthy way) and found that my body was shrinking in size. Looking back now, I never realised how much weight I lost and how much better I looked. I found that my skin was clear, I was smaller in size and my health was obviously significantly better - but at the time, I never ever thought I was small and constantly felt like I had more to lose.

At the moment, right here and now, I am 100% unhappy with the way I look. I've put on a lot of weight and I do think it's contributing towards my unhappiness. My weight started to increase again when I found out my parents were separating - it was a hard time which I struggled with and found that this was the main trigger. My parents moved apart, I moved into a smaller house and had to get rid of my exercise bike. I had a tough time, there had been times where I'd go out and get drunk, end up at friends house parties upset and I was so down that I use to skip meals so my weight was up and down. But ever since that time, my weight has been increasing.

Another factor that contributed to my weight increase was taking the contraceptive pill which I've been on ever since the age of 19 which is just over a year. The drug in the contraceptive injection (which I've also had) and the pill doesn't agree with my body and does make my weight increase. I've found that during my time of taking this, my weight has increased and each time I've been weighed at the doctors during my consultation, she's told me I have gained weight. The drug in the contraceptive pill that I take makes me feel constantly hungry and never full so I snack more and eat more aswell as making my emotions sky high and rock bottom sometimes, often leaving me depressed - a horrible concoction for weight gain.

I never thought anything of my weight until recently and it took harsh reality and Topshop's mirror to show me exactly how I look now and how unhappy I am. I'm sure everyone can relate that they've put on weight and then only realised when they've gone to try on a top and it doesn't fit and today was a real slap in the face. So tonight when I came home, I felt pretty crappy, I tipped my contraceptive pill down the sink and tomorrow marks the start of a happier Beth, with some exercise, a healthy diet and no pills encouraging weight gain, and hopefully in the near future I can get back to the happy girl I used to be.
All that matters to me is feeling good about myself and being healthy, I don't want to live a life where my health is at risk or contributing to diseases when I'm older.

My goal is to lose a stone by christmas as my first goal and hopefully progress from there. I'm not going to set myself a drastic goal weight - I'm going to take it day by day and work towards small goals in order to reach an overall goal weight.

Sorry about the long personal post, this won't be a regular thing, I may update on twitter but this was just something I felt like I needed to do and thank you to those of you who read it!

Monday, 15 October 2012

An Introduction to Lush

Lush has been a brand I've never really been into. I always walk past their shops and the heavy scent puts me off and immediately makes me think it's all artificial but when I had a spare few hours I decided to take the plunge, go in and speak to an advisor.
To me, lush seems reasonably priced. I went in with the intention of getting some information about face masks and came out with a purchase and a little tester.

Lush Brazened Honey: £5.95/75g, Mask of Magnaminty: £4.95/125g

When I look for skincare I'm always looking for something to unclog my pores and brighten my skin - after telling the advisor this, she recommended the Brazened Honey mask to brighten and Mask Of Magnaminty for my problem areas.

The Brazened Honey mask is a fresh face mask that has to be kept in the fridge, it roughly lasts around a month and comes in a little pot which the advisor said would get 7-8 applications out of it. The mask is a thick grainy texture which dries on the skin and once the 5-10 minutes has passed, I exfoliate my skin using the grains in the scrub and wash off.
I notice after I've used this my skin does seem brighter and smoother. I apply the mask to my cheeks and forehead while the Mask Of Magnaminty is on my nose and chin. The only thing I dislike about the Brazened Honey mask is the scent, it's not overpowering or off putting, it's just something I'm not too keen on.

The advisor kindly gave me a little sample of Mask Of Magnaminty after telling about problem blackheads. Unlike the other mask, this has a strong minty scent which I like. To maximise effects of this mask, I cleanse my face beforehand with hot water to open pores then apply this mask to problem areas, which are my nose and chin. I leave this on when the other mask is on and again, it dries hard. It's tingly which really makes me feel like it's working. I'm looking to clear blackheads and I think so far so good, this seems to be reducing them in size but I'm not sure about removing them, I think I need something more industrial for that.
I've also noticed that blemishes have appeared on my nose and chin but I think that's a good sign that it's working - fingers crossed!

Do you like Lush? Have you tried any of their face masks/skincare products?

Friday, 12 October 2012

REN Centifolia Gel Cleanser

Here's my foot into the REN pool so far. I've read rave reviews about their masks and serums and when I try a brand, I like to try the basics first - like cleansers, so I picked up the Rosa Centifolia Gel Cleanser.
REN Rosa Centifolia Gel Cleanser: £17.00

I've always been a creamy foaming cleanser kinda girl so trying a gel cleanser is a bit of an alien concept to me but I must say that I love it. I find these types of cleansers perfect for a morning, they're refreshing and remove any excess dirt and oil. I still tend to opt for my foaming cleanser on an evening or if I'm wearing heavier make up.

Firstly the packaging gets a big thumbs up from me, it's simple, easy to read and is a perfect size to fit in my bathroom cabinet. The pump dispenser is also really handy for the right amount of product without wasting any and it's a lot more hygienic in my opinion. I think there's nothing worse than dirty lids on tubes and when you get to the end you have to squeeze like mad to get the little bit out at the bottom.

What I really like about this product is it's so gentle, I find that I can massage this onto my skin and eyes and it removes mascara easily without any irritation. REN products don't contain parabens, sulphates, mineral oil, petroleum, synthetic colours, synthetic fragrances and some other ingredients. The cleanser has a subtle rose scent which is 100% natural.

When I apply this, I use 2-3 pumps of the cleanser depending on my make-up and it turns into a light foam, I dip my hands into hot water and foam up again then wash off with hot water. If I am wearing a heavier foundation such as Double Wear, it does take the foundation off well but I run some cotton wool pads with toner over my face just to make sure I remove all traces of make-up - like I said, I prefer it as a morning cleanser.

Overall, I am really impressed with my first purchase from REN and I will be looking into trying their moisturisers and masks in the future. I have my eye on the Glycolactic Radiance Renewal mask - let me know if you've tried it and find it any good!

Have you tried REN before?

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Seche Vite Top Coat

I've been painting my nails for as long as I can remember and I'm always searching for a new top coat, nail strengthener and different brands of polishes, so when I first stepped onto the blogosphere and saw that Seche Vite was a holy grail top coat, I dipped my foot into the Seche pool.
Seche Vite top coat: £3.45/0.125oz

This is smaller than the bottle that many people have but personally I find that nail polishes gloop when I buy bigger bottles, especially top coats so I decided to purchase the smaller size to try the product and also avoid the gloopy stage.

My first impressions of this product weren't that high actually. I didn't notice that much glossyness after a days wear of Seche Vite but after trying this with another polish, my opinion has changed and I'm convinced it was the coloured varnish.

What I love about this product is how fast your nails dry, it doesn't leave a tacky layer on the nail where you have to sit for a good hour and wait to dry, after around 15 minutes they're dry and you can run your finger over your newly painted nails with ease. On my little travel bottle, the brush is a perfect nail and you can cover the nails in 2 strokes. But the main deal breaker to this top coat has to be how shiny my nails are and how long lasting the polish is - I teamed this with my newly purcashed Essie polishes (which I didn't rate because they chipped easily) but after using Seche Vite on top, the polish life has dramatically increased!

I can safely say I'm an Seche Vite convert!

Have you tried Seche Vite? What's your favourite top coat?

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Giveaway Prizes

Linsay from Pandoras Basket held a giveaway to celebrate her blog reaching 300+ followers - Well done! Head over there and check out her blog, it's great!

But my prize that I so luckily won was the choice of a MAC lipstick and cream or powder blush. You can imagine how much better I felt when I woke up hungover after my birthday weekend and found I was the winner so that Sunday I dedicated my morning to picking my prizes. And here's what I was sent...

The prizes came in the coolest polka dot postage bag and each item was individually packaged. Along with the MAC products came some little minis - which I will definitely be using, the Dove deodrant is perfect for the handbag and I love the St Ives scrub and also can't wait to try the Radox shower smoothie. And as a sweet treat, a pack of chupa chups - girl after my own heart?

The lipstick I chose was Please Me which is a dark pink creamy matte lipstick with the tiniest hint of red, and the blush is in Peachykeen - again this looks very dark in the pan but it comes out on the face as a gorgeous sheen of pink with a hint of golden shimmer as you can see from the photo.

I definitely think these colours I've chosen are winter shades which is perfect as the days draw in and it gets colder. I really should get myself out of all the bronzer and embrace it being cold and being pale and these items are perfect for that.

A massive thank you to Linsay and everyone head over to her blog and also follow her on Twitter @smooshkissxx.

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Monthly Favourites: September

Garnier deodrant: £3, Bumble & Bumble Deeep mask: £21.50, The Body Shop Hemp hand cream: £10.00, Chanel Chance: £50.00, Topshop Whimsical lipstick: £8.00

001. I know deodorant is a bit of weird thing to blog about, everyone uses it but this stuff is amazing. I was a Sure girl for ages but I've found that it just doesn't work anymore. I find this lasts all day and (sounds gross) but I could still smell it on me late at night, it really does keep me dry for 24 hours at least.

002. I wrote a review about this mask (here) and I love it, when my hair feels dry and in need of moisture, I wash my hair and run it through the ends - 20 minutes later, my hair is silky smooth.

003. The Body Shop Hemp hand cream is an absolute saviour and now it's turning to winter and colder, I want to prevent any dryness and this hand cream is so moisturising and really nourishes the skin.

004. Chanel fragrances are my favourite. I'm such a lover of Coco Mademoiselle and Chance. I picked up a 50ml bottle of Chance at the airport on the way back from my holiday and it's been my staple fragrance since!

005. I got this Topshop lipstick in Whimsical when I picked up my boots so it's a new September favourite but it's a beautiful creamy matte coral lipstick that is so easy to wear.

What are your September favourites?
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