Friday, 4 October 2013

L'Oreal Studio Secrets Smoothing Resurfacing Primer

Having oily skin, it is a constant battle to find make-up that will stay in place all day. I already use a pretty heavy duty foundation (Revlon colourstay), but wanted to find a primer that would really help lock my make-up in place all day. I actually bought this one on a complete whim as L'Oreal was 3 for 2 in Boots so I thought I'd try one of their primers, but I'm so glad I picked this up!

The packaging isn't the most eye-catching, and the round pot makes it slightly awkward to get the product out with your fingers when you're running low, but honestly that is the only bad thing I can say about this product.
It has quite an odd consistency to it - it's thick but also easily blendable. It is white in colour,  but sinks into the skin without leaving any white residue on the face. You only need a tiny amount, so a pot of this will last an absolute age.
I have been using this for around 2 months now, and I can honestly say it is probably the best primer I have tried. I am a big fan of Benefit's "The POREfessional" but after trying this, I think I have a new favourite. It creates an amazingly smooth base for make-up application, and I have definitely noticed that my make-up looks better for longer when I apply this than when I don't - I would say I probably get another couple of hours out of my make-up when this is applied.
I would definitely recommend this - it's not cheap but in my opinion it's worth every penny! This is available from Boots and Superdrug and is priced at £14.29


Thursday, 3 October 2013

Meet Oscar

So, in the time since I last wrote a post on my little blog, a few things have happened in my life - some good and some not so good. However, one of the most amazing things to have happened is the fact that we now have a new little furry friend in the family! Meet Oscar, my 12 week old springer spaniel puppy!


Oscar turns 12 weeks old tomorrow (4th October), we brought him home about 4 weeks ago now and he is just the cutest little puppy (though I'm obviously biased). He's just been allowed out for walks etc in the past week, and he already loves going for 'walkies'!
He loves meeting new people and has already learnt to 'sit' and 'lie' - such a clever dog!
I can't believe how much he's grown just in the last 4 weeks, he's pretty much double the size he was when we brought him home already!
Anyway this was just a quick post to introduce Oscar and normal beauty related posts should resume shortly!


Friday, 9 August 2013

Lee Stafford Hair Growth Treatment

My hair has been the same length for about as long as I can remember. I would absolutely love to have long hair, but unfortunately for me my hair never seems to grow past a 'certain length'. Enter this product which claims to be specifically targeted at hair 'that never grows past a certain length'. Sounds perfect no? (apologies for the state this product is in, I've had it for ages and completely forgot to photograph it before I used it - oops!)

First of all, I really love the packaging of this! Mainly because I am a complete sucker for anything bright pink. but it's just such a lovely colour and looks really nice on display in your bathroom! Anyway, I digress..
"Lee Stafford Hair Growth Treatment with Pro-Growth complex, contains a protein-based complex to fertilise your follicles to help hair grow faster and reach its maximum potential length."
It is recommended that you use this every time you wash your hair until you see an improvement, and then to reduce the use to once a week. It also recommends that you use an "egg sized" amount but I found this was way too much for my hair, I used a lot less than that (obviously this depends on the length and thickness of your hair - mine is medium length and quite fine so I didn't need a huge amount). I used this every time I washed my hair for about 4 weeks, and in all honesty I didn't notice any difference in the length of my hair at all. I now tend to use it just once a week like the packaging suggests.
Although I didn't notice any difference in the length of my hair, I did love how this made my hair feel after use. It made my hair extremely soft and shiny, and did make it appear fuller.
I do like this product, just not for its main use. I didn't feel it made any difference to the length of my hair, but I do think it makes a really good hair treatment in terms of making the hair feel super clean and silky. I probably wouldn't repurchase as I am basically using this as a deep conditioner and I know there are other, cheaper ones on the market, so I would probably try a different brand. I was slightly gutted this didn't work for me, as I know a lot of people rave about this!
You can buy the Lee Stafford treatment for £7.99 from Boots.


Thursday, 8 August 2013

Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation

Okay. So. It's been almost 2 whole months since I last wrote a blog post. In all honesty it really doesn't seem that long ago, I really don't know where the time has gone! In truth there wasn't a reason why I stopped writing on my blog, I just lost my 'blogging mojo' and just generally had nothing I felt I wanted to write about. In any case, I finally feel ready to put some effort back into my little piece of the Internet, so here goes!

After getting back from my holiday, I needed a new foundation in a darker shade to match my new found tan, so I went to Boots and picked up the Bourjois Healthy Mix on a complete whim. I have used this foundation before, and really enjoyed using it so I decided to give it another whirl. Since the last time I used it, they have revamped the packaging to give it some lovely red accents, and I am actually a huge fan of the new packaging. It now comes in a glass bottle as opposed to the plastic bottle it used to come in, and I personally feel that the red accents make it look quite classy.

"16 hour radiance booster! Instant anti-fatigue result! Give your skin a boost of radiance with Bourjois’ Healthy Mix foundation with a vitamin-rich fruit therapy formula for an even complexion and an instant anti-fatigue result! "
Bourjois claims that this foundation will make you look 'flawless' for up to 16 hours. I'm not too sure it lives up to this claim, as I do tend to find myself powdering my face after around 7/8 hours, although I do have quite oily skin so this may be down to that. I will agree with the claim that it makes you look flawless though, as it really does make your skin look smooth and evens out any imperfections you may have.
The formula of this foundation is quite strange - it's almost gel-like, but because of this it blends into the skin really easily. I tend to apply this with my Real Techniques expert face brush, but it also blends in really well with your fingers if that's how you roll!
I have the shade 52 'vanilla', which is slightly darker than I would usually go for due to just returning from holiday, but it is a really good match. I find a lot of Bourjois foundations have quite yellow-y undertone, which can be a pain but fortunately it works for me! There are 8 shades available to choose from, which isn't a great shade range but unfortunately this is quite typical of drugstore foundations!
I really like this foundation and would definitely recommend it if you can find a shade match! It's probably most suited to drier skins as it's quite hydrating, but that's not to say it doesn't work for oily skins too!
This is £9.99 and available from Boots and Superdrug.


Saturday, 15 June 2013

Barry M Passionfruit & Confetti Nail Effects

(L-R 2 coats of passionfruit; 2 coats of marshmallow over passionfruit)
Barry M are probably my all-time favourite brand when it comes to nail polish. They have such a wide range of colours and always seem to be one of the first in line when it comes to bringing out cool 'nail effect' polishes.
Passionfruit is a new release from their 'Gelly' nail polish line, which if I'm honest, I wasn't a huge fan of. I found them a lot more gloopy than the regular Barry M polishes, and found they took an absolute age to dry. However, I really liked the colour of Passionfruit, so I put my doubts to one side and I'm really glad I did. It's a beautiful pinky-red colour, which is absolutely perfect for summer and will look amazing with a tan. This isn't gloopy in the slightest, it's really easy to work with, and you can even get away with only applying a single coat, although I tend to apply two just because I'm fussy! It dries to a really high-shine finish, and I found it lasted a good 3/4 days without chipping.
The Confetti Nail Effects line is also a new release, and I wasn't sure if I'd like the effect at first, but again this one has pleasantly surprised me. I think it gives a really cool effect to the nail, without being too 'in your face'. It dries amazingly fast, although you will need to apply a couple of layers of topcoat if you want to achieve a smooth finish over this. I have the shade 'Marshmallow' which is a pink bar 'confetti' suspended in a clear base. I think this is the most subtle one of the range - other colours include: Dolly Mixture - a blue, peach and yellow confetti, Liquorice - black and white confetti, Bubblegum - blue and white confetti, and Sour Apple - blue and yellow confetti.
These are both £3.99 and available from Boots and Superdrug. 


Friday, 14 June 2013

MAC Fix+

It feels like absolutely ages ago that I sat down and wrote a post on my blog, but honestly, that is because it WAS ages ago. I don't really have an excuse, I just didn't feel inspired to write, I felt I had nothing to write about, and so I decided it was better to just take a small break rather than churn out posts that I didn't really want to write. Anyway I finally WANT to write again so I thought I'd start with a review of a product that I have been using for a while now, and I know quite a lot of people really like it, but I just haven't been getting on with it!

"An aqua-spritz of vitamin and minerals, infused with a calm-the-skin blend of green tea, chamomile, cucumber, topped off with the fresh, natural, energizing scent of Sugi. Adds radiance, finishes makeup. Spray it on. Skin drinks it up!"
I originally bought this as a make up setting spray, however I found that it didn't actually help my make up to stay on any longer than it would without it. It does, however, work well at getting rid of the dreaded 'cake face'.
As someone with quite oily skin, I tend to apply a fair amount of powder and unless I'm extremely careful, it's all too easy to end up with a cakey, powdery, gross face. However, one spray of this and the powdery look has all but disappeared, which in my books, is amazing. Unfortunately for me, I found this made my skin look rather oily than simply giving it a natural dewy look.
As it makes my skin look oilier than it already is, I've had to give this product a miss recently. I tried to persevere with it, but with oily skin already, I don't want something that makes it look worse. To be fair, it is really good at removing the cakiness of make up, but that for me is where the positives end. I don't rate it as a setting spray, and I don't like the fact it makes my skin look really oily.
This is £13.50 and available from MAC, Debenhams and Selfridges.


Sunday, 26 May 2013

MAC Lipstick in Hue

Would you believe, this is the very first mac lipstick I have ever tried! I am not one for wearing lipstick, and as much as I was desperate to try a mac lipstick, I begrudged paying £14.00 for one when I knew I probably wouldn't get much wear from it. After much deliberating, I decided to bite the bullet and buy one, but opted for a nude, subtle colour which I knew I'd be brave enough to wear. I was choosing between this one and Crème Cup, but in the end I decided on Hue as it seemed the more wearable of the two!
Hue is a glaze finish lipstick, which mac describe as "low-colour impact with sheen-style finish". Hue is described as a 'soft pale pink', which is a perfect description. It is a relatively nude colour with just a hint of pink which would suit most skin tones.
It feels really moisturising on the lips, which I love as I suffer with quite dry lips and I don't want to be wearing something which dries them out further. One thing I will say is this does accentuate any dry patches on my lips so I have to make sure I scrub them thoroughly before I apply this. It also doesn't last all that long, probably 2/3 hours, but I'm told this is typical of glaze finishes and the other finishes tend to last a lot longer!
Overall I am impressed with the formulation of this and I absolutely love the colour, but would I buy another mac lipstick? Maybe, but only if it was a special or unique colour. I've not been absolutely bowled over by it's staying power, and I think there are good alternatives on the high street, as I think £14.00 is a huge amount of money for a lipstick. I can see why so many people love them, but I think I'll be sticking to cheaper lipsticks for now!
This is £14 and available from Debenhams, House of Fraser and Selfridges.

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Benefit Hoola


I had been wanting a matte bronzer for absolutely ages, and I couldn't seem to find a cheap, drugstore bronzer that didn't contain shimmer! On a whim, I purchased this from Debenhams after seeing some rave reviews about it!
I am a big Benefit fan. I love High Beam and I use They're Real mascara daily, and Hoola has been no different! It is completely matte, which I wanted as I use this for contouring, and has a really lovely silky texture to it. It's not too dark on my pale skin tone, although if you have darker skin it is buildable without looking cakey!
The packaging is lovely too. It's in Benefit's traditional box of powders packaging, which is fairly sturdy and I would feel safe chucking this into my make up bag. It comes with a brush which I don't personally use, but this is a nice touch. I also like the fact that it has a built in mirror as this is useful if you want to touch up your make up during the day.
This applies really nicely and is really easy to blend into the skin. I mainly use this for contouring but you can use this all over your face for a nice sun-kissed glow without looking orange or dirty!
It lasts on my skin all day, and doesn't look cakey no matter how much you apply. It is expensive, but I think it's totally worth it as I haven't found a cheaper alternative that works better!
This is £23.50 and available from Debenhams, House of Fraser, Boots and Benefit.


Friday, 24 May 2013

Cream Blush: Bourjois vs. Maybelline

I have only recently discovered my love for blushes in general, and so when I discovered Bourjois were bringing out some cream blushes I knew I had to try them. Whilst I was in Boots purchasing a Bourjois cream blush, these Maybelline ones also caught my eye! From doing some research, I don't actually think these are a new release from Maybelline, but I had never seen them before so decided to pick one up to compare the two!

Left: Maybelline, Right: Bourjois
The shades I have are Maybelline Dream Touch Blush in 07 Plum, and Bourjois Cream Blush in 03 Rose Tender.
The packaging of these are quite different. The Maybelline blush is in a rather sturdy glass pot with a colour coded, screw on lid, whereas the Bourjois blush is in a tiny magnetic compact which contains a handy mirror which is really useful for when you're touching up your make up on the go. Although the Bourjois packaging is more travel-friendly, I actually prefer the Maybelline packaging, simply because I find it easier to open!
The consistency of the two products was where I found the most difference. I found the Maybelline offering to be much more creamy and easy to apply than the Bourjois one. I usually use my Real Techniques Stippling Brush to apply these, and I find that the Maybelline blush provides more even application and less work to blend into the cheeks. I have also tried applying these both with my fingers, and again the Maybelline one is much more creamy and easy to blend than the Bourjois.
The Bourjois is a cream blush which dries to a powder finish, whereas the Maybelline blush tends to leave a dewy, cream finish on the cheeks. This is all down to personal preference, but I prefer the finish of the Maybelline as it looks more like a natural colouring!
In terms of pigmentation, I would say that these two were on a par. I had no complaints about either of their colour payoff, and they both lasted with my make up all day, something which is important to me as I hate touching up my make up throughout the day!
Overall, I like both of these products. I think they're both good quality, however my favourite has to be the Maybelline Dream Touch Blush, as I find it easier to apply and blend in!
The Maybelline blushes are £6.49 and available from here, the Bourjois blushes are £6.99 (usually £7.99!) from here.


Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Soap & Glory Hand Food

"Contains shea butter, macadamia oil and marshmallow . Scented with our Original Pink fragrance. the most astonishing hand cream ever? You decide!"

This is described as a non-greasy, hydrating hand cream which contains lotus flower and fennel extracts.

I absolutely love this product. I have been using it for an absolute age, and it is one of the only hand creams I have found which really does sink into the skin almost immediately, leaving no greasy residue whatsoever. I HATE my skin feeling greasy, so this is an absolute must for me when it comes to hand creams.

This is without a doubt an absolutely essential product for me, especially in the colder months when my hands tend to become extremely dry. This really helps to soothe the skin and keeps my hands feeling soft and smooth.

It has the traditional Soap & Glory scent, which I personally am a huge fan of. The scent also lingers on your hands for a good while afterwards. This genuinely leaves your hands feeling soft for hours after use, and I would not be without it anymore.

This is a travel size 50ml which is available from Boots for £2.50, and a full size 125ml is available from Boots for £5.00. Also available is a hand pump of this, which is more for leaving in the bathroom than carrying round with you - £7.00 for 250ml from Boots. 

Monday, 13 May 2013

Treacle Moon Raspberry Kiss Body Scrub

Treacle Moon isn't really a brand I had heard much about, however I am often drawn to their products when shopping in Tesco, firstly because I originally thought they were Philosophy products due to the remarkably similar packaging, and secondly because they have a selection of such interesting scents available! The scents in the Treacle Moon range include this one, raspberry, and also vanilla, ginger, lemonade, strawberry, coconut, mango and cinnamon.
Products available in each scent include shower gels, bubble baths, body scrubs and body butters.
I picked up this raspberry body scrub as I needed a new body scrub and I absolutely adore the smell of this one. It is very sweet and does smell quite artificial, but I love it anyway.
This body scrub is a really lovely consistency, and contains small exfoliating particles as well as the larger black ones which you can see in the image above. It does a really good job at removing any dead skin cells from your skin, and leaves your skin feeling lovely and smooth afterwards. I must admit it isn't as effective as my beloved Body Shop body scrubs, but for £2.99 and the wide range of 'flavours' they have, you can't really complain!
I will probably be picking some more of these up in some different scents, and I also really want to try one of their body butters! I know these are available from Tesco but I have never come across them anywhere else, so I don't know exactly where you can pick them up from I'm afraid!