Friday, 29 September 2017

£10 Huda Beauty 'Desert Dusk' Dupe?

We can't all afford to spend £56 on an eyeshadow palette, and frankly, I don't think I'd even want to. Even though Huda's new Desert Dusk palette looks beautiful, there are some shades within it that I couldn't see myself using. However, I was intrigued by the duochrome shades described as eyeshadow toppers, meaning they aren't full coverage shadows.

So after scouring the internet, I came across a few beauty pages who had found dupes for each shadow in the palette, including the duochromes. I was delighted to see that in fact I already owned the eyeshadows that were found to be close in formula to the Desert Dusk shades.

Topshop's Chameleon Glow eyeshadows cost just £9.50 and look very similar in colour and finish. Obviously, since I don't own the Desert Dusk palette myself, I can't vouch for just how close in colour payoff and formula the dupes are to the originals, but you can see how amazing they look in the photos below. The two shades are 'Shuffle The Cards', and 'Wax 'n' Wane', the latter being purple/blue toned, and the other a more rose gold colour. 'Shuffle The Cards' has been likened to the shade 'Celestial', and 'Wax 'n' Wane' is similar to 'Twilight', as you can see in the photos below.

Photo from Cult Beauty

Of course, these are also eyeshadow toppers and are in no way opaque enough to wear alone, but they add a touch of sparkle to any eye look and have the ability to take your eye make up from basic daytime to evening glam. They also remind me of the Urban Decay Moondust palette, as they are so eye-catching and sparkly.

I now feel better about not owning the ridiculously priced Huda Beauty palette, and now that I know I already own the two shades that I liked the most, I feel no need to splash out.

You can get the Topshop Chameleon shadow toppers here!

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Origins Ginzing Energy-Boosting Moisturiser

I have been on the lookout for a new daytime moisturiser, and I think I have found it. Up until now I have been using moisturisers specifically formulated for oily skin, but these usually leave my skin feeling tight and sometimes my primer doesn't sit well on top.

Ginzing moisturiser comes in two formulas; a heavier, ultra hydrating cream, and a lighter, oil free gel. I opted for the lighter gel version, and it smells delicious, like freshly squeezed oranges. The ginzing and coffee bean ingredients claims to energise lacklustre skin, giving you a healthy, hydrated glow.

I love it in the morning after I have cleansed my face, as it feels luxurious but sinks in really quickly. It also doesn't leave me feeling like I have a film on my face which is something I have found with other lightweight, gel moisturisers. My skin is left feeling soft, clean, and ready for my make up, plus it allows my primer to apply perfectly. This moisturiser can also be used at night but I have a heavier product for this, although I wouldn't have an issue using Ginzing before bed.

I really like this orange pot of goodness. It is £25 for 50ml which may sound a little more expensive than the usual brands you'd find in the likes of Boots and Superdrug, but I feel like this jar is going to last me a long time.

You can get it here. Or you could just pop into Debenhams, as there are a few more products in the Ginzing range, and trust me, you need to sniff them all.

Saturday, 23 September 2017

Free Samples Straight To Your Door: Tried & Tested

Everybody loves a freebie, and now there's an easy way to get free samples sent straight to your door.
Feel Unique's Pick 'n' Mix service lets you choose five samples from a wide range of brands such as Kiehl's, Bioderma, Caudalie, and Charlotte Tilbury. The sample sizes range from sachets, to mini tubes, and although some are really quite small, others are rather generous and would be great for traveling.

Once you have chosen your five samples, you simply pay £3.95 for delivery which may sound like a catch, but in your despatch email you then receive a code to redeem the £3.95 shipping fee on your next Feel Unique order. So you can treat yourself to the full size version of any of the samples you fell in love with, or perhaps another product you've had in mind.

It took me a while to decide which five products I'd like to try, but I finally settled on these:

Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate
I have heard so much about this stuff but it is quite expensive so I thought this was the perfect opportunity to try it out. It claims to hydrate skin overnight, and ensure you wake up looking younger and positively glowing. I should look about 14 then, hopefully!

First Aid Beauty Skin Rescue Deep Cleanser
Another brand I have heard good things about but have never tried. This is a cleanser for oily skin that contains red clay to remove excess oils and purify pores.

Lancome Monsieur Big Mascara
I am always on the hunt for a great mascara and I'm really looking forward to trying this. It promises up to 12 times more volume, so it'll be interesting to see if the clumps stay at bay.

Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau So Fresh
Chanel will always be my number one fragrance, but I like having options sometimes, and this tube of Daisy is floral and fruity. Handy for my handbag too!

Balance Me Congested Skin Serum
Most of the time my skin behaves, but for days when it doesn't I got this mini tube of serum that aims to rebalance skin and treat blemishes, whilst soothing the skin. This is actually a decent sized tube so I'll get a reasonable amount of uses out of it.

I really like the idea of a sample pick 'n' mix, and it's a great way to try products you've always wondered about but found the full sized version too expensive. It makes trying before buying really convenient as they are delivered straight to your door.

You can avail of this service once a month so if you don't like subscribing to monthly beauty boxes for fear of not liking any of the products, you can just do this instead and try products you actually think you'd like.

Plus, with being able to claim back your postage cost you have a great excuse to treat yourself to a full sized product!

Start ordering your samples here.


Monday, 18 September 2017

A Beauty Box Worth Having

I love beauty boxes. There is nothing more exciting than receiving a box full of a variety of products to try, and it's even better when they are from brands you've either never heard of or used before.

I am currently a Glossybox subscriber, but if you don't fancy signing up for a subscription, there are plenty of other one-off boxes on the market to treat yourself to.

I recently saw this Tili box on the QVC site and snapped it up as soon as I saw the contents. I have never heard of Tili before, but apparently they release a box of goodies every few months. Within this box you receive over £90 worth of beauty products for a mere £20, and there are no subscription or postage costs required!

Since I ordered the Tili box, I had been curtain twitching, eagerly awaiting its arrival. Now it's here it is everything I expected it to be, and more!

The box contains a whopping nine products and they are all extremely high quality. Read on to find out more, or don't if you would like to order it but don't want to spoil the surprise!

The Tili box contains a natural spray fragrance from Shay & Blue London. I have never heard of this brand before, but the scent it 'Blood Orange' and it smells so juicy, delicious, and fresh. There's also base notes of charred wood and amber. Usually I'm not a fan of scents in beauty boxes, but this is so addictive I've been spraying it non stop since I opened it. It's a handy size for my handbag too, so I can spritz it wherever I go.

There's also a pink gel coat from Perfect Formula. This is a weekly nail treatment to strengthen the nails and the pink tint ensures they look bright and healthy. This will be great for my nails as they tend to become weak and dry from painting them so often, so I am really looking forward to giving it a go.

One of the Bare Minerals Gen Nude matte lip colours features in this box too. This is a full size tube in the shade Juju. It's not a colour I would usually go for but it's actually a really pretty dark mauve colour. I have also only ever tried the glossy Gen Nude lip colours, so this is a great opportunity to try the matte formula and it smells like sweet vanilla, mmmmm!

Also included is a Gatineau Eye Makeup Remover. I have never tried any Gatineau products before and I am nearly finished my current remover, so this has come at the right time! I love French pharmacy brands so hopefully this won't disappoint. It's a dual remover, meaning it is both water and oil so it should do a great job at removing my waterproof mascara.

L'Occitane have thrown in a mini bottle of their luxurious Supple Skin Oil, and it smells so amazing! It contains more than 50% almond oil to smooth and moisturise skin and it will be perfect coming into the colder months. I really cannot stop sniffing it, it's gorgeous.

I have never tried any Tarte lipsticks before, but that is about to change as there's a mini lipstick in the shade Colada in this box. Again, it's a pretty autumnal shade, an orangey, tan brown colour.

They've included a can of Rituals foaming shower gel in the box too, in my favourite rice milk & cherry blossom scent. I love this smell, and I already have the body moisturiser so I'll be smelling like a rose, as my Nanny used to say. If you have never smelt this scent, where have you been? It's the most delicious, clean and fresh smell and it lingers on your skin long after you've used it.

Lastly, there are two tubes of facial skincare products; Papaya Enzyme Peel from Elemis, and Vinoperfect Radiance Serum from Caudalie. I love Caudalie products although I've never tried this one so it should be good, and the Elemis peel is packed full of fruit enzymes for a non -abrasive exfoliation, which I love.

As you can see this box is packed full of really useful products. I feel like it is an absolute bargain for the price as the Bare Mineral's lip product is usually £17 to buy alone. This would make a great present for somebody, or perhaps just a treat for yourself! If you'd like to get your hands on one, follow the link below, but be quick, a box this good doesn't hang around for long!

Get your Tili Beauty Fifth Editon Box here!
Psssst! You can also get a fiver off your first order with the code FIVE4U

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

The Most High-End Foundation To Ever Grace My Face

YSL recently launched their All Hours Liquid Foundation so of course I had to try it. Anyone who knows me, knows I am a huge fan of the Too Faced Born This Way foundation, so anything else has to really impress me.
'All Hours' promises full, matte coverage that lasts up to 24 hours, with a waterproof, transfer resistant finish, and SPF 20. If you find that your make up melts off your face during the day or becomes sticky and uncomfortable, this could work for you.

I received two samples of the foundation, one in the shade BD 35 & BD 40, so I could mix them depending on how much tan I had on. I generally mix shades anyway, because I find it hard getting one bottle of foundation that is a spot on match. I was also kindly given a sample of the Touche Éclat Blur Primer, something which I have always been fascinated by as it contains small gold flecks throughout.

Glossybox September Edition

It's that time again! My favourite time of the month, when the postman has to ring the doorbell because my little box of extremely well deserved treats doesn't fit through the letterbox.

I wasn't overly impressed with the contents of last month's box, so I was hoping for a better selection of products, and this month seems to be just that.


Monday, 11 September 2017

The Wedding Journal Show Competition!

The Wedding Journal Show is returning to the Titanic Exhibition Centre in Belfast for one weekend only! From the 30th September to the 1st October, 350 of Ireland's top wedding suppliers will be under one roof, ready to offer expert advice and exclusive deals.

Couples attending the show will have the chance to enter The Wedding Journal's signature competition, "Win a £35,000 wedding." How fab would that be? The prize includes:

    • A luxury wedding reception at the new Titanic Hotel, Belfast
    • Wedding and bridesmaids' dresses from The Bridal Suite
    • Groomswear from Remus Uomo
    • Wedding photography by Digital Bride 
    • Wedding rings from Gardiner Brothers

That would be your wedding covered. But not only could you win all of the amazing prizes above, you will also go on a once-in-a-lifetime luxury honeymoon to South Africa, with business flights, staying at the Rhodes Place Hotel in Cape Town. Phew! What a prize, so make sure you're there!


Colour Shifting, Ultra Chrome Nails

I feel like the only being on the planet who doesn't get their nails done. I am not the type of girl who could commit to one colour for so many weeks. I like to chop and change my nail colour as much as I change my socks. Well, maybe not just as often.

While I love ordinary, pretty colours that are readily available in Boots and Superdrug, I do like to go on the hunt for more unique shades and finishes. A year or two ago, I came across the brand ILNP on Etsy, and instantly fell in love with their range of beautiful colour shifting, ultra chrome polishes.

ILNP in Birefringence
Colour shifters change between different tones and colours depending on the light, and that's what makes them one of my favourite finishes. They are quite hard to photograph, but I can assure you, they are amazing in person. I find myself admiring my nails at regular intervals in the day...

ILNP in Cygnus Loop
 'Cygnus Loop' is the shade I first purchased that got me hooked on the brand. They also do holographic finishes, and 'flakies' that give a glittery effect. You can have a look right here.

Saturday, 9 September 2017

Bare Minerals Bare Pro Performance Wear Liquid Foundation

Bare Minerals is one of those brands that was never really on my make up radar, until recently when they launched their Gen Nude lip colour collection. I love a good nude, and the variety of nudes and finishes is right up my street. I'm currently on my second tube of their 'Forbidden' lipgloss, I might even go as far as saying it's my favourite lipgloss ever.

They've recently launched a new liquid version of their popular Bare Pro pressed powder foundation, and it promises to improve the texture of skin over time, interesting!

Bare Pro promises:
  • Blurring of pores
  • 24 hour breathable wear
  • Full coverage
  • Transfer resistant
  • Natural matte, soft focus finish
  • Improvement of skin texture over time
  • SPF 20 (You still need sun protection even if you don't live in a sunny climate!)

I was kindly given a sample of shade 16, a medium shade with a yellow undertone, perfect for when I am wearing tan which is every day of my life. On application, the first thing I noticed was how much coverage you get from one layer. It covers everything that needs covered and evens out the rest without looking heavy, think full coverage without the cake. I used my favourite foundation brush to apply it, the Blank Canvas F20, and it buffed it on like a dream.


Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Sleek Lifeproof Foundation

Sleek is one of those brands that create good quality products for a reasonable price, and after the massive success of their contour kit, they really took off. They also carry a huge shade range and cater to both the fairest and deepest of skintones, which is quite impressive as not many 'drugstore' brands tend to stock such a variety.

They have recently launched their 'Lifeproof Foundation'; oil free, medium to full coverage, sweat-proof, and available in 24 shades. Again, their shade range puts other affordable brands to shame. They've even grouped all colours into families, so you can choose from fair, light, medium, medium deep, and deep. The shades within each group also range from pink, to neutral, to yellow/olive undertones, which makes it easier to find your perfect match.


Sunday, 3 September 2017

Seasonal Nail-Spiration

I don't really believe in wearing seasonally appropriate nail colours, if you want to wear glittery coral in the middle of winter, go for it! But with autumn fast approaching, I have found some more neutral shades for those of you wanting to tone down your talons. Of course there's some glittery pink, and electric purple thrown in too though...

This shade is only £1.50 from Primark's Insta Girl range. 'Nude Selfie' is seriously long lasting and is a beautiful taupe/brown nude. Very grown up!

This M.Y.N.X. super purple shade called 'Kandid Galaxy' is one of my all time favourites. When I first bought this I wore it non stop for weeks on end, and I still love it. It's so eye-catching, and although it looks more on the blue side in this photo it's a really unusal looking purple.

Barry M have so many shades and finishes to choose from, they never fail to impress me and this recent purchase is no different. 'Freestyle' is a blush pink colour from their Speedy Quick Dry range, and it really lives up to its name, drying within a couple of minutes. I love the colour as it's nice and feminine without being too Malibu Barbie.

'Candy Paintjob' is a lovely plum glitter that very seasonally glam. Floss Gloss isn't as well known over here as it is in America, and if you haven't already, go and check out their other shades. They make a really pretty rose gold glitter called 'Keys To The Mansion', when I wear it I can't stop admiring my nails, it's a distraction.

I Scream Nails is another brand not as well known in the UK. The bottles are made to look like ice cream cones, and they make some seriously cool shades. This one is called 'Wonderworld', and I put two coats over a pale purple to get this effect. It fits in perfectly with the current unicorn trend too!

Lastly, is another more recent purchase from Barry M, a super girly polish called 'Socialite'. I already have the purple shade in this formula, and I love this one just as much. It is so sparkly and brightens up any autumnal outfit.

So there you go! Some nail-spiration for the dull days rolling in. If you have any nail colour recommendations, don't forget to share in the comments below!

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Bilou Coco Cocktail Creamy Shower Foam

You may not have heard of Bilou up until now, but it's set to become popular with its deliciously unique scents and extremely cute packaging.

Bilou is a German brand that has only recently become available in the UK and as soon as I heard, I took a detour to Superdrug to have a sniff of their enticing fragrances. The range includes shower foams, cream foam, and body sprays all in fresh scents to make showering fun again. Each product is also packed with high quality and moisturising ingredients such as avocado and sweet almond oils, so it's giving your skin a treat.

The shower foams come in a variety of 'flavours' such as Cotton Candy, Tasty Donut, Fizzy Berry, and Coco Cocktail, which is the one I eventually chose. The product dispenses as a lightweight foam, and the scent is just like a pina colada, you'll think you're lying back on a sun lounger at the beach.

I was so excited to use the Coco Cocktail shower foam, and I wasn't disappointed. I did however think the smell would hang around long after I had finished using it, but I couldn't smell it after about ten minutes which was a bit disappointing. I was hoping to have a cloud of coconut and madagascan vanilla floating down the hall.

Nevertheless, the product is still lovely and it's a fab idea to have so many unusual fragrances. They would make lovely presents and at only £3.99 you could even treat yourself to a couple too. I am really interested to try the foam cream which is a fancy name for a body moisturiser, as I'd love to be able to smell the scent for a little longer, instead of walking round sniffing the top of the shower foam bottle.

Bilou is available in selected Superdrug stores and online here!

Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink

If you're looking for a budget friendly, matte lipstick that stays put but doesn't leave your lips feeling as dry as the Saharan desert, look no further.

Maybelline have launched so many great products recently, and their Superstay Matte Ink lip colours are no different. Think lightweight lip colour with intense pigment and extreme staying power. I of course purchased the nudest shade of the range, 'Loyalist', which has a slight hint of pale pink.

It goes on shiny and dries down quickly to a super matte finish. Me being me, I had some cake and tea to put the formula to the test, and it stayed put throughout. I was a bit apprehensive as sometimes liquid lipstick starts to separate on the inner side of the lips when you are eating, but this did no such thing. Impressive!

I'd like to try more of the shades in this range, but they are slightly too bright for the coming season and the darker shades are seriously dark, so I think I'll give them a miss. I am quite happy with the shade I have and I can darken it down with a lip liner if I fancy.

These are available in both Boots and Superdrug for £9.99.
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