Tuesday, 28 February 2012

FOTD: Subtly sunned

Products used:
- Collection 2000 Shimmer Shades in Way To Glo.
- Collection 2000 Colour Intense Trio Eye Shadow in Cookie Dough
- 17 Mirror Shine Lipstick in Belle

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Review - Collection 2000 Shimmer Shades in Blushalicious

It's been hailed as a dupe of Nars' Deep Throat Blush.

It's been compared to Givenchy's Le Prisme Blush.

But what's the fuss about with Collection 2000 Shimmer Shades Blush? Here I'll review the blusher palette and then I'll review the bronzer at a later date.

Here are the colours swatched separately - but one of the best things about this blush is how the colours look all mixed together - it's a really lovely pink that produces a natural-looking flush.

This blusher sells for £4.19 from everywhere that stocks Collection 2000 - Boots, Superdrug, Morrisons... the list goes on. Often there are 3 for 2 deals, so it might be worth waiting for one if you want to get this.

As you can see, it comes in a chunky clear plastic block that's about 8cm square and a centimetre thick. Admittedly, not particularly high-end looking, and no mirror for on-the-go application (but who does blusher on the go anyway...?) but it's durable and you can easily see what's in it. If I ever use this blusher up I'm going to use the casing to put elf custom elements in - it's just that durable.
Another good thing about this packaging is the catch. It feels securely shut, so you could be sure you wouldn't get blusher all over your make-up bag/ handbag/ suitcase, but it's not so tricky to open that it hurts your nail polish.

Does it live up to its promises?
On the Boots website, it says:
Release the shimmer queen in you, and create a soft glow that lasts all day long with new Collection 2000 Shimmer Shades. These delightful little compacts will give you a sun kissed, radiant glow normally associated with spending time under the exotic sun.
With two palettes to choose from, prepare to dazzle as the four merged blocks combine shimmer with shade for a multi-tonal and natural blend of colour.

There is one part of that promise that doesn't ring true - this blusher is not at all shimmery. I was worried that the shimmer would make it difficult to wear, but as there isn't any it doesn't. The bronzer palette is slightly less matte, though.

They're certainly not lying when they say the product lasts all day long - I wore it yesterday for a party involving lots of dancing and screaming the words of 90s songs, and it was still there when I got home. I was impressed!

The 'multi-tonal' part is certainly true - one thing I like is that I can lightly swipe a mixture of the bottom two shades around the jaw to serve almost as a bronzer - for a tiny bit of amateur contouring.

Would I repurchase?
Well, to be honest with you, I doubt I'll ever finish this - there's a stonking great 12 grammes of product there. But if I did use this up, I would definitely repurchase it. Lily likey.

(Other products worn in that photo: elf 32 shade eyeshadow palette, elf shimmer eye pencil in Plum Passion, 17 Ultimate Volume lipgloss in Very Berry)

Project Pan update - Week 2

2) I finished these. They're good, so much less hassle/mess than a bottle and cotton will - especially as I have a tendency to spill things. I already had a backup - though from Quickies brand not Superdrug's own ones.

None yet, so I stay on two.

Also I have 1000 views on my blog - wow! Thanks everyone, it means a lot. =)

Saturday, 25 February 2012

FOTD: It's Party Time!

It's my friend's birthday party tonight, which I'm really excited about
Products used (in order):
  • elf Nail Polish in Purple Pleaser (mentioned here)
  • elf eyelid primer (mentioned here)
  • Hello Kitty Liberty eyeshadow palette (the white shade in the inner corners of the eyes, and then the dark reddish and the dark silver glitter over the eye)
  • Collection 2000 Extreme 24H eyeliner (upper lash line)
  • Rimmel Soft Kohl Kajal Eye Pencil in Black (lower lash line)
  • Natural Collection LashCurl Mascara in Black
  • Collection 2000 Shimmer Shades in Blushalicious
  • Natural Collection Loose Powder
  • Benefit Watt's Up! highlighter
  • 17 Ultimate Volume lipgloss in Very Berry

FOTD: Summer Simple

Yes, I do know it's not technically summer yet - after all, it's still not 20 degrees out. But, it is warm and the sun is bright, so here's an easy simple look for summer!
Products used:
  • Rimmel Soft Kohl Kajal Eye Pencil with a thick line on the upper lash line and a thinner line on the lower line
  • Natural Collection Moisture Shine lipstick in Rose Bud, used as a lipstick and also as a blusher, for which it's quite good as it's neither shimmery nor sticky.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Two Things Thursday: totally non-beauty related

I passed my driving test! *dances* I'm so happy, and it's going to make life a lot easier for my mum, which is always good.
Partially as a well-done to myself, partly because I wanted it anyway, I got myself a new phone as a reward - once I've traded in my old phone it will only have cost me twice what I spent on makeup last month - so there's another reason not to buy any makeup in March :p

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

FOTD: Pencil it in

I realised that whenever I wear eye makeup, whatever I do the liner lasts longer than the shadow, so I thought I'd use my eye pencil as shadow.

Products used:

  • Rimmel Soft Kohl Kajal Pencil in Stormy Grey (as shadow) and Black (as liner)
  • Elf blusher in Shy
  • Natural Collection Moisture Shine Lipstick in Rose Bud
I think this is definitely a look I'll repeat, maybe with other eyeliners.

Monday, 20 February 2012

NOTD: Miss Sporty Clubbing Colours Metal Shine

This is a polish that I've had for ages and forgotten how good it is, but which surfaced during yesterday's nail painting session with my friends ( unfortunately more than half of my not-well-painted nails chipped during the day or flaked off entirely, so I just shoved this on the top.

This is a very very shiny pink/lilac/purple. It looks fairly good as a one-coat polish, and any attempt to fix it will result in brush marks showing and it looking a bit awful, so it's one to get right first time...

Sadly this colour is no longer in the range that I know of, but it looks very similar to this, just a bit darker. The finish is very cool, though I keep expecting duo chrome that isn't there.

Nail painting!

Yesterday evening I went to my friend's house where we all indulged in a bit of nail art of various quality. Here are some pictures (apologies for non-sharpness, my camera decided to focus on everything but the fingers...)
Here's what one of my friends did. Overall she did the most impressive nails of all of us - I thought I'd start off with the best ones! We all thought the lips on her little finger were really cool and personally I liked that they were quite modern. The flowers on her ring finger are also really cool. We liked that she had a heart on what we referred to as her 'swearing finger,' though it could lead to mixed messages. Then on her index finger was an amazing desert island, which I tried to copy, but it didn't go so well.
Here are three of mine. If you look at the far left one you can see my disastrous copying of a desert island... I like the purple sparkles though, and there's a better photo of my index finger's white sparkly nail further down the page.

This was my most arty friend, she did flowers on all of her nails, I was really impressed!

This is Philly's 'cosmos hand' which is epic. She thinks she ruined it by adding the stars, but I am envious, they're really pretty. You can check out her blog here.

This is one of mine. I used a white base, and then a subtle glitter (my elf one from my freebie at the start of this month) and then a chunky Barry M glitter.I think this is really pretty, definitely one to do again.
My most talented friend (from the first picture) put this on her thumb. How cute! The flash kind of wiped out the top of the nail, but it had a little yellow for the sun. It looked really professional.
This was what I attempted to do on my thumb - it didn't work out quite how I intended, but it still looked cool, so I'm happy.

One of the things I most like about these get-togethers is that they get you to use some of your own products that you hadn't used for ages, and there's a NOTD using one of those coming right up.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Project pan update

1 - Primark Beauty '4 in 1 gentle facial cleansing wipes'
These wipes won't be a repurchase in my opinion. They were a lot cheaper than other wipes - only a pound for fifty, but they don't remove make-up particularly well, and, more importantly, my skin doesn't like them and they often seem to sting a little bit. Worth a try though, to see if you get on with them. They could be quite difficult to get hold of, though, as (in my local Primark at least) they are sometimes next to the tills and sometimes nowhere to be found... The mysteries of Primark, eh?

1 - I finished 'Bringing Down The House' by Ben Mezrich on Monday. The film 21 has been one of my favourites for ages and I wanted to read the book, and, as usual, the book way outshined the film. I'd recommend this if you like escapism, drama, or hot MIT students.

2 - I also finished 'Things Can Only Get Better' by John O'Farrell. It's about his time as a Labour Party activist in the 1980s and was recommended by my Politics teacher. It was really interesting, though like many of the books he recommends it does leave you a bit anti-Thatcher...

Friday, 17 February 2012

Review: Simple 'Spotless Skin Quick Fix' cleansing wipes

I have used up the wipes I was using (more on that in my Project Pan update on Sunday) and I had these in store ready to go, and here's a review from first use.
I picked these up on a multibuy deal, but the normal price is £3.85 for 25 wipes, which is a lot of money, so I'll be reviewing with that in mind. I chose these ones specifically because they say they're good at reducing and preventing spots, and although I'm very lucky with my skin in general, I have recently been getting some spots, so these wipes should help. I also chose them because they promised to remove waterproof mascara, which I wear quite a lot.

Fairly standard for wipes really - I like the colour which is much more vibrant in real life than it looks in that photo. The logo patch thing on the front is cool, looks really swirly. (technical term, there).
On the packaging these wipes promise to:
  • Remove waterproof mascara
  • Have spot fighting ingredients which give results from Day 1
  • Be naturally antibacterial
  • Have no perfume or colour
  • Be kind to sensitive skin
Do they live up to the promises?
I haven't yet worn waterproof mascara since I've been using these, but I have been wearing my Collection 2000 Extreme 24 Hour Eyeliner, which I find actually tougher to remove than waterproof mascara. These wipes dealt with it really well; I was impressed.

The spot fighting ingredients are Zinc PCA and Chamomile, which it says absorb excess oils and soothe the skin. While my skin does feel a little clearer, it also feels a bit drier than it would normally in the morning (I use wipes in the evening, and do the whole moisturising thing in the morning, usually), which I guess is because oils have been absorbed away from my skin.

I did wonder why face wipes needed to be antibacterial, but apparently the Phytosphingosine helps to fight spots and blemishes. This is something that I'll have to observe over a longer period of time, I think.

While these wipes most definitely have no colour (unless you get all deeply philosophical and say white is a colour...), they do have a slight scent. They just smell of 'clean' to me, a little bit similar to Boots' own brand cucumber hand wipes. I like the smell, personally.

I would definitely agree with these being kind to sensitive skin. Maybe it's just the jump from those harsher Primark wipes I was using, but these just felt really soft and soothing on my skin. Smooth rather than the slight sting and rough feel I had with the other wipes.

Would I repurchase?
If I saw these on offer, I would definitely repurchase, but I wouldn't pay £3.85 for them.

FOTD: Red Lips and Cat Eyes

Products used:
  • Elf eyelid primer
  • Elf eyeshadow in 'driftwood'
  • Collection 2000 Extreme 24H eyeliner
  • Elf blusher in 'shy'
  • 17 Ultimate Volume lipgloss in 'very berry'

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Two Things Thursday: Flippy Dress, Pretty Lips

The first thing is the Topshop Flippy Hem Dress which looks like it will be a really good going-out dress all year round. Plus, because it's stretchy, it fits really well, and it makes me look skinny!

The second thing is something I've been lusting after for about a month now - Clinique Chubby Sticks. I'm going to treat myself to one in Chunky Cherry when I finish my Project Pan, I think.

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

FOTD: Recreating Zooey Deschanel's look from the new sitcom 'New Girl'

If you're anything like me, and since you're reading this you probably are, I bet you have a girl-crush on Zooey Deschanel. She's great, and so pretty! I've been watching her new sitcom, New Girl, and it's really funny - in last week's episode they attempted to defrost a turkey by putting it in the spin-dryer.
Anyway, I thought I'd have a go at recreating her look from the show.
I used the following products, in this order:
  • Natural Collection Corrector Stick (it's light green, to neutralise red cheeks)
  • Natural Collection Cover-up Stick (beige)
  • 17 BB Cream (Light shade) - review to come
  • elf Eyelid Primer - review to come but mentioned here
  • elf eyeshadow palette - review to come but mentioned here
  • Collection 2000 Extreme 24 Hr Felt-tip liner - review to come but mentioned here (on the top lash line)
  • Rimmel Soft Kohl Kajal Eye Pencil (black) - mini-review here (on the bottom lash line)
  • Natural Collection LashCurl mascara (black) - review to come
  • Collection 2000 Shimmer Shades in Blushalicious - review
  • Natural Collection Moisture Shine Lipstick in Rose Bud - review to come
Gosh, looking at the list here it really emphasises how much stuff I already have that I haven't yet reviewed for the blog - thank heavens for Project Pan, eh?
Are any of you Zooey fangirls too? Let me know

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Project Pan! My rules, and here we go!

Right, so I saw project 10 pan mentioned on another blog, and I think it's a great idea because, small as my makeup stash is, I'm already accumulating stuff I don't really use.
Here are my rules:
  1. Until I have used up 10 products I am not allowed to buy any more makeup/skin care products
  2. Or, if I get to the end of April and haven't used up ten things, then I shall let myself buy things again.
  3. Exceptions: if I use up something that I use very often and I don't have an equivalent of (eg my only brown mascara) then I am allowed to buy a replacement. This should really only happen with eyeliners, mascaras, and foundation - I think I have similar things for most other things.
  4. Definition of using up is as follows. For anything that comes in a pan, more than 1/2 the diameter of the pan is pan showing as opposed to makeup. For anything in a tube or pen (eg mascara, lipgloss) when the applicator is swiped across my hand little enough product should come out to be useful. For twist-up products, I'm calling them used up when, when they're twisted up to their full extent, there is a flat line across the top of the casing and the product. For palettes I have to use up 50% of the products or hit pan on all of them - except for the elf custom palette where each thing is basically full size. For pencils, when there is less than 4cm pencil length (not counting the sharpened bit) - so its basically unholdable.
  5. The refills of my perfume do count.
  6. Anything that is already on its way to being used up counts, after all this is all about using things up.
  7. When I use something up I must review it.
  8. I'm also doing the same with books, minus the reviewing - unless you want me to :p
  9. As a reward when I finish I'm going to buy myself the mini collection of OPI's Holland range
Any comments welcome, as usual!

Saturday, 11 February 2012

NOTD: Lucky Dip - Barry M's Blueberry Ice Cream - shade 306

It's half term, yay! I couldn't decide what colour to paint my nails earlier, so I decided to just dip my hand into my nail polish bag and pick one at random, and I happened to pick this one.

And I'm so glad I did. I reviewed another Barry M polish that I've had for the same amount of time (years) here and hated it. I'm going to have to try my other two Barry M polishes again once the weather warms up (somehow, I can't help thinking yellow and orange are a little inappropriate for this freezing weather) and see which camp they fall into. Because this polish is fab.

Again, it took a little longer than I'm used to with my quick dry polishes for this to set completely, with the result that one nail got a little ruined when I tried to pin my hair back off my face, but the brush in this bottle seems much more easily handled than in the other bottle - and maybe the formulas are slightly different, especially since Spring Green is from the general colour range while Blueberry Ice Cream is from the, um, ice cream colour range.

I noticed that, although when first brushed on it didn't look as if it could be a one coat polish (and I actually put two or three coats on) when I let the polish dry it spread across the nail slightly, if that makes sense - so it could very well be a one coat job in the future.

This is a lovely colour, great all year round. In this freezing weather it makes me think of snow and ice, and it could look really cool with glitter. In the summer, by contrast, it's fresh and clean.

This polish retails at just below £3, and there are often special offers of two Barry M nail polishes for £5.

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Two things Thursday - Hello Kitty, Hello Hogwarts

First up, I can't believe I forgot to do this last week. Well, actually I can. Let me paint you a picture: I got home from school feeling absolutely rotten, went straight to bed missing ballet. Then about an hour later my mum woke me up to tell me that we had a burst pipe... not fun.

The first thing I've been loving recently is this eyeshadow palette from Boots' Christmas gift range - I bought it in the January sale for £4.00 and you can see it swatched here. It has all the colours to create a nice range of looks, so it's quite good for everyday. Lily likey.
My friends bought me a ravenclaw jumper for my birthday! It's exactly the same as they wore in the films and I like it loads because it's so not obvious that it's Potter merchandise - nice and subtle. Plus it's 100% lambs wool so it's really warm - perfect for this weather...

A little bit of shopping!

Yesterday, I went to a visit day at Southampton Uni, and of course I had to sample what there was in the way of shopping in the town too... I only realised when I laid it all out that I had in fact bought a whole outfit, though not one that is at all cohesive.
On the left is stuff from New Look:
A boyfriend cardigan with (most importantly) buttons and pockets - I have a grey cardi similar to this that I live in, so a change will be nice.
Extra long leggings! My local New Look doesn't keep enough legging stock to have the extra long ones in, so whenever I'm in a different New Look I check - one of my pairs of leggings died recently and the other two pairs are standard length and a bit short, so I've needed a new pair for ages!
Then on the right is stuff from Matalan
My parents got me an exercise tshirt for Christmas but I said I'd never wear it because it was white, so they took it back to the shop and told me to look out for one I would wear. This fits in with rising Olympic fever in our house!
The skirt was only £3 in the sale, and I have a similar one that I'm wearing to death, so I knew it would be a good buy

On a side note, I have enabled ads - if they ever start working. I'd welcome comments on whether the locations are too obtrusive - see the Contact me link in the left sidebar.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

NOTD: Because if you can't have sparkly nails on your birthday,when can you?

The title says it all, really...
Base coat: Miss Sporty vitamin cocktail (not in range any more, sad face)
Main colour: No7 Stay Perfect in Jammy (mentioned here)
Top coat: elf nail polish in Twinkle ( mentioned here) (the under a fiver bit)

Saturday, 4 February 2012

OPI new collection: Holland!

Image from www.squarednails.com which is an amazing blog I'd urge you to check out.

The first thing to say is that, as always, the colour names are amazing. I think my favourite four are Vampsterdam, Kiss Me On My Tulips, I Don't Give a Rotterdam, and A Roll In The Hague.

The colours are also really nice - if this is summer 2012's palette, then I'm looking forward to it!

I love Gouda Gouda Two Shoes. It looks look it would look really sophisticated on the nails, as would Wooden Shoe Like To Know - both polishes look like they mean business!

I think the colour I Don't Give a Rotterdam might be my favourite in the bunch - it looks like there are slight grey tones to the blue, which is really elegant. It looks similar to Barry M's Blueberry Ice Cream in my opinion, but that might just be me.

A Roll in the Hague looks like quite a vibrant orange. Again, I have something similar in the form of Barry M's block orange, which I might have to dig out again...

Pedal Faster Suzi is a very pretty pale colour, which I think would look best on those with either very pale or very dark skins.

Dutch Ya Just Love OPI is a really nice colour, a cool purple which I think looks quite urbane and chic.

Thanks a WindMillion isn't a colour that appeals to me, but mainly because it reminds me of mint, which I don't like. However, pastels are very on trend this summer, and, similar to Pedal Faster Suzi, I can see this looking good with very pale or very dark skin tones.

Red Lights Ahead... Where is a classic red I think - there's not much to say about it, really.

Kiss Me On My Tulips is a really nice colour, a little cooler than some other hot pink nail polishes (ahem, No7 Stay Perfect Jammy, I'm looking at you), which makes it look much more wearable I think - classy, though I don't like the word.

Vampsterdam is an amazing colour, it reminds me of Rimmel Lasting Finish in Black cherries. So nice, it would look quite cool done like a French manicure, with that as the tip colour, and Kiss Me On My Tulips as the body of the nail.

I Have A Herring Problem is such a nice colour - I think this would be ultra-wearable, and suitable for pretty much anoint.

I really want to like Did You 'ear about Van Gogh because of the name, but I'm just not a fan of the colour - though I can see it looking good on very pale or dark skin tones.

There you go, a bit of a roundup.

There is a mini set, called Dutch Treats, featuring I Have a Herring Problem, Red Lights Ahead... Where, Kiss Me On My Tulips, and Pedal Faster Suzi. I think I might treat myself to it, especially as it's only £13 and I like all the shades in it - it works out at £3.25 per polish, which is really good value.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

e.l.f. Haul and free gift!

Last weekend, elf had a sale where, if you spent £10, you got a free gift and free shipping. 'Count me in!' I thought. There are two reasons that I love free gifts:
  1. Freebies! Product without having to pay for it!
  2. They help me to try new things that I wouldn't have, and in this case, since elf are mail-order, allow me to sample products that I would have doubts about buying sight unseen
This first picture is my freebie:

I received:
  • A shimmer eye pencil in shade 7608 - Plum Passion. I'm really happy about this as I've been wanting a purple eye pencil, and, even better, this one is shimmery! It sells for £1 or £1.50, depending on colour, here.
  • Nail polish in 1565 - Purple Pleaser - and 1573 - Twinkle. Purple Pleaser is a lovely sophisticated shade, which I think I'll wear a lot. Twinkle is a generic sparkly topcoat, which is also something I've really wanted. As with the eye pencil, it sells for £1-£1.50. And gosh they have a lot of colours.
  • The eyeshadow palette, which I think was a part of a Christmas gift collection. It says it has '32 Warm colours' though it's actually the 'cool' palette on this page. The colours aren't so soft as the custom eye colours, but they're still divinely soft. Lily likey. I can see myself using this palette a lot for a while, and, like I said earlier, it'll get me to try eye looks with lots of colours I wouldn't normally use.

And here are the products I bought for myself:
  • Custom Eyes element in Driftwood. They accidentally sent me two, which is great because it looks like a colour I'm gonna use a lot. It's a shimmery greenish brown, similar to Boots 17's Walnut Pearl.
  • Custom Face element in Flushed, which is a bit darker than the Shy blusher I have. Looking forward to using this, but it'll probably have to wait til I use one of my three Custom Eyes shadows, as I only have the one space in my compact and I desperately want to try the Driftwood shadow.
  • Eyeshadow duo in Olive, which is a nice pale green/brown matte duo. Fairly summery and springy.
  • Shimmering facial whip in Persimmon - I bought it as a blusher, but I might also give it a try as a lip colour.
  • Eyelid Primer in Champagne. Something I've been wanting for ages
  • Brushes - Blending Eye Brush and Eye Crease Brush, both lovely and soft.
I will swatch and review these soonish, I hope. Even if I don't, they'll definitely appear in faces of the day :)

FOTD: pretty in pink

Products used:
  • Rimmel Colour Rush Quad eyeshadow in Urban Flower - I used the pale pink matte shade all over the eyeshadow as a base (reviewed here)
  • elf Custom Eyes in Wisteria (swatched here). I found that I wasn't really using this shadow to its full capability, only as an interest point to lighten up other eye looks, so I wanted to use it as a focal point. And it's really pretty!
  • Boots 17 Photo Flawless Eye Pencil in Carbon Black/ Copper.(reviewed here).
  • Boots Natural Collection WaterGuard mascara in Brown/Black
  • Collection 2000 ShimmerSquare in Blushalicious (currently with £1 off at boots.com, which means it's down to £3.19)
  • Benefit Watt's Up highlighter
  • Boots 17 Mirror Shine Lipstick in Belle