Month: May 2014

NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil

Hold. The. Phone.

These lip pencils are the monkeys nuts. Any bold lip-phobe needs to give these a go before they completely rule out the look. Long-lasting, quick and easy to draw on and in a matte formula, I’ve even been brave enough to wear these in the day (and to work!).

My two favourites? Well lets have a look…

The Orange Red: NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Red Square (R) – This is the pencil-formed product that stands out from the crowd for me. It imparts the most gorgeous orange-toned red on the lips that I’ve found and boy does it hang around!

The Red Red: NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella (L) – A cool-toned, medium-dark red, possibly my favourite one of the bunch. This is a beauty, the convenience of a pencil with the application of a lipstick in a jumbo-size crayon. This super pigmented shade is a gorgeous complimentary red that is really chic and I love it!

So.. are there any other shades from this range I should try?

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The Luxury Skincare Edit

When you’re sleeping the biological rhythm of the skin changes, it starts to repair itself and regenerate. In order to maximise the skins natural efficiency DECLÉOR developed a night balm to help smooth and nourish the skin.

This balm is 100% natural and melts into the skin effortlessly. All you need is a pea sized blob warmed between the fingers to cover the whole face which I apply in an upwards motion (you know, to counteract gravity and all that!).

DECLÉOR claim that this balm helps facilitate the nutritional exchange within the skin, as well as smoothing, softening and nourishing the face from the first application.

With essential oils of Rosemary, Geranium, Camomile and Angelica, Avocado Oil, Borage and Red Palm this balm naturally helps to moisturise the skin and leave you looking (and smelling) divine.

Result: In the morning, your skin is smooth, supple and glowing from within.

I’ve also tried the Aroma Sun Expert High Repair After-Sun Balm which should be applied after sun exposure. The skin is repaired overnight, giving it a calming effect and flexibility in the morning. Makes your tan last longer too!

The after-sun balm has a creamy and delicious fragrance that is instantly absorbed into the skin without leaving a trace. This repairing, nourishing and restorative balm is beautiful, and I can only hope to try out more of the DECLÉOR balms soon!

The Bold Lip Edit

NARS Niagara – £19.50 from Space NK: This pink based coral is a new addition to my makeup stash but boy is it a good’un! This satin lipstick glides on with semi-glossy texture and imparts an opaque wash of colour with one swipe! They don’t smell funky either, which is always a bonus! This lipstick is easily one of my favourites, I don’t find it too glossy, which is a good for a matte lover like me. Paired with fresh eyes and cheeks this shade offers up an easy pop of bright colour that instantly brightens the face. Lasting time, we’re looking at 4 to 5 hours which is not as long as some of the others but.. I can deal with it for a colour this good!

Lipstick Queen Sunny Rouge Sinner – £20.00 from Space NK: All colour and no shimmer, just the way I like it! This long-lasting moisturising full coverage lipstick is a gorgeous coral red colour which is a much darker and richer pink than NARS Niagara but is equally as beautiful. I need to try more of the LQ offerings, because if they’re all like this… I guess i’m hooked!

Rimmel Moisture Renew Lipstick in In Love With Ginger – £6.49 from Superdrug: The colour pigmentation is really strong with this vivid coral orange, they apply beautifully and glide on like butter. They’re super moisturising and last quite well for a drugstore gloss lipstick. I found that this occasionally clung to dry patches on the lips, but thats nothing a little scrub couldn’t fix. Overall this is a beautiful colour and will look great for the summer!

MAC Viva Glam III – £15.00 from MAC: A muted brownish-plum, a nostalgic purchase – the story of this one can be read about here. A dark pinky brown red, it’s perfect for a vampy dark bold lip and lasts forever! Seriously, the lasting time on this one is easily 5+ hours. This stuff does not budge! Top marks.

When a bold lip comes into play I think it’s super important that you make sure it stays put. Because nothing says chic like a patchy pout…. So to stop this from happening I call on the MAC Prep and Prime Lip – £12.50: this colour-free base is perfect under lipsticks, adding moisture all whilst smoothing and refining the lips, and improving the appearance of applied lip products. I never wear a bold lip without it!

The Game Changers

I suffer terribly with super frizzy hair. I tend to have a halo of frizz that stands about an inch from my head at all times – this only gets worse with humidity.

Although I’ve tried many smoothing and anti-frizz products nothing has ever really worked. The closest I get to a frizz free barnet is when I use the moroccanoil to smooth down all the flyaways – but sometimes things can look a bit greasy.

But I think I’ve finally found something that fights the frizz like no other… the TRESemmé 7 Day Keratin Hair Shampoo and Conditioner duo.

Infused with Keratin – which is a family of fibrous structural proteins forming the key structural component of hair and nails, and made with lower sulphates the shampoo gently cleanses the hair whilst helping to maintain the hairs quality and texture. The conditioner acts in the same way and helps to lock in moisture within the hair and keep frizz at bay.

This revolutionary product duo even lasts through washes. It’s amazing! And the results are unbelievable. After using the shampoo and conditioner for 7 days now I can see the results are like no other. I have visibly reduced frizz and my hair is silky smooth.

There’s also a 7 Day Heat Activated Treatment that is used in conjunction with a hairdryer and straighteners to ensure super smoothness and less frizz.

If you’re a frizz sufferer like me then give this a go, you’ll love the results!

New In

My leave of absence from the blog sent me into a downward spiral of obsessive purchasing.

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Hourglass – Now you may remember here that I proclaimed my love for the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes, and true to form, they are mine! Say hello to Dim Infusion, Mood Exposure and Luminous Flush (L-R). These blushes are a hybrid between their Ambient Lighting Powders and pops of colour which impart that whole ‘glowing from within’ thing. They’re exactly what I expected, and more. My favourite is Dim Infusion, riddled with peachy tones that gives a subtle flush similar to my own. Although Luminous Flush is a close runner it’s bronzey and beachy and I can’t wait to put it to the test on holiday this summer!

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NARS – I had a bit of a NARS blow out. Now lets not judge… this is a haul of the past two months worth of spending, induced further by pre-exam depression. I have a problem.
But… I finally got my hands on the Radiant Creamy Concealer in Vanilla after a UK shortage of the stuff, and I can confirm that yes… It was well worth the wait! Please pray that they never run out of stock again.

Another NARS purchase was the Multiple stick in Maui and this is by far one of my favourites. It’s a beautiful blush colour, but it’s so good on the lips too. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that it might be my *favourite* lip colour so far. It’s just a shame that it’s such a dry consistency, meaning that it doesn’t always sit very well on the lips and things can start to look a little creased.

So because of this problem with the Multiple stick, I set off on a hunt for a lipstick dupe, and although I haven’t found it yet.. I’ve definitely stumbled across another love on the way. Enter NARS Satin Lipstick in Niagara – a pink based coral that I’ve just fallen in love with! Perfect for the summer, perfect for the winter. An instant pick me up in a bullet. I think I’m in love.

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Eyes – Now I’m cheating a bit here, there may or may not be another NARS purchase in this category, in the form of a Due Eyeshadow in Kalahari, marked as a Gold confection and a Sugared cocoa, these two are beautiful. Kalahari appears in one of my favourite palettes ‘And God Created the Woman’ and here is where my love affair began. Swept all over the lid this shadow imparts a subtle shimmer and a warm hue, but packed on with a flat brush and buffed out – this can create a show stopping bronzed smokey eye like no other. Top marks.

Perhaps a close runner up as my favourite purchase of the lot is the By Terry Ombre Blackstar in the shade Brown Perfection. A twist-up, thick pencil formed eyeshadow that glides on, stays put through rain or shine and adds the definition needed to ramp up the eyes. I find it’s best as an eyeliner/smudger outerer rather than an all over the lid jobbie but it’d do both if you wanted. Recently you can find me lining my eyes thickly, top and bottom and blending it right out… Olsen-style.

And last but not least is a new mascara entry – Le Volume de Chanel Mascara in 10 Noir. Now here’s my only gripe.. I wanted the mascara, but I wanted it in brown so with a range including Bleu, Noir, Prune and Khaki Bronze I didn’t really have much of an option. I guess Khaki Bronze would of been my best shot, but they didn’t have it in stock. So, I bit the bullet and went for the black and… I love it. I love the formula, it holds a curl, and adds volume like no other without flaking or clumping. I just wish it was brown.

So for now I’ve curbed my spending and tied up my purse strings. Let’s just hope that the summer launches aren’t too enticing!

Guess Who’s Back?

After what feels like forever… I’m back!
I’m hoping to get back into serving up a daily dose of my most recent musings, full to the brim with beauty bumph and recent recommendations.

It’s been over month since my last post and since finishing my exams *cue cheering and sighs of relief* sitting down to write up some posts has been well overdue. I’ve been lazy, and lathargic, and I’ve made excuses. But today felt like the day to kickstart my enthusiasm and get started.

So, first off I thought I’d give you a look into what breakfasts I’ve been gobbling up this week… (top row: L-R & bottom row: L-R)

Monday – This called for clean and lean pancakes with low fat greek yoghurt, sliced banana, raspberries and flaked almonds.
To make these you’ll need… 100g organic rolled oats, 200g ricotta or cottage cheese, 4 eggs, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon. Whiz them all up together until you have a smooth batter and use it to make the pancakes in a pan.

Tuesday – Looks a little less enticing… but it was delicious none the less! This was smoked salmon and two poached eggs on a bed of salad leaves. This was more of a brunch, and I was full up until tea time (bonus!).

Wednesday – This is a new favourite of mine! This little jar is packed full of fruit, from bananas to blueberries to raspberries! I even added a few strawberries in for good measure! All lumped together with some natural yoghurt, coconut and pecans. Delicious.

Thursday – Calling up the Breakfast Smoothie (all the details for this can be found here). This time I used some raspberries, banana, and mango chunks.

Friday – Another hefty helping of banana, raspberries and blueberries (are you sensing the theme here…?), but this time all of the fruit is piled on top of some porridge which i’ve started making with the Alpro Coconut ‘milk’ which is just delicious, it combines a delicious blend of refreshing coconut and the light taste of rice. With only 40 kcal per glass, it livens up your favourite recipes, adds a splash of sunshine to your breakfast and it’s delicious on its own too. It’s naturally low in fat and free from animal fat, a great source of vitamin B12 which contributes to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue, what’s not to love? Go on… give it a try!

Saturday – *Warning* No berries or banana to be seen! Saturday was a good day, starting off with a Charentes Butter Pain au Chocolat from Waitrose. Light, flaky and generously filled with chocolate, these are little pastry parcels of heaven. All washed down with a hot chocolate courtesy of mummy.

Sunday – See Monday (those pancakes are just the best!)

Just a little something to wet your whistle, so to speak. And I’ll be back later with a post depincing the things that are ‘New In’ in the HR house. Stay tuned!