Sunday, January 31, 2010

Boots (Drugstore) Haul

I popped int Boots today to pick up a few things (I even made a list for once and managed to stick to it!). I wanted to pick up a good foundation brush coz I'm feeling experimental and since I've never applied my foundation with anything else but my fingers, I wanted to see what the difference would be. I checked out the Ruby & Millie brushes and they looked good so decided to pick up a couple... The foundation brush was about £11 and the brow/lash one was about £7.50. I have noticed recently that when my mascaras get a little bit older (couple of months), they start to clump a bit more, I guess because the formula starts to dry up. Since I'm only half way through some of them, I don't see the need to go out and buy replacements, so I got the Ruby & Millie brush that has a metal comb on one end for separating lashes after mascara application and a brush to groom your brows. I reckon they are both suitable to use on your lashes though. The double ended brush ends flip down to create a compact case for travel which is handy.
I decided to get a back up of Revlon Colourstay Foundation in True Beige...I seem to have yo-yoed between Natural Beige and True Beige. Although I realised this week that Natural Beige is just slightly too light for me. It's hard to keep up with your perfect foundation shade when you use fake tan or gradual tan moisturisers! It's a daily challenge to try and get the match right! I also picked up another Loreal Double Extension Mascara/Serum because I still really like the formula and effect it gives. I think it's a fantastic mascara for the price!
I have known about Bio Oil for years and have heard alot of people raving about it for fading stretch marks, scars etc but I've also heard that it's great for Eczema, Uneven Skintone and Psoriasis. It contains Vitamin A, E, Calendula Oil, Lavender Oil, Rosemary Oil, Chamomile Oil and Purcellin Oil. It can applied to the face or body before or instead of your moisturiser if your skin is particularly dehydrated. I sometimes get small patches of Psoriasis on the back of my neck, at the end of my nose/sides of my nostrils and also sometimes just under one eye. It's not that noticeable to be honest but it annoys me. The cold weather makes it worse so I decided to check out Bio Oil and see how I get on. I also think it will be a good moisturiser to prepare my skin and improve it's condition for my wedding day. It was £19.50 for a 200ml bottle so not cheap but if it turns out to be the answer to my problems then I have no problem spending that amount on it.
As I had finished yet another tub of my beloved Lee Stafford Hair Growth Treatment, I wanted to pick up another one. I sauntered down the aisle and they were out of stock! How annoying. I decided to try one of the other hair masks the line had to offer and picked up one called 'Bling Hair Rehab'. It's basically a super hydrating mask containing hydrolised silk that's particularly good for coloured or hair that's seen alot of heated appliances. Since I just had my hair coloured, I thought this would be a good time to test this out. I will let you guys know if it's as good as the Hair Growth Treatment.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

YSL Fard A Levres Rouge Pur

I'm still on the search for the perfect lip colour for my wedding day and with a name like 'Romantic Pink', I thought this YSL Fard A Levres Rouge Pur was definitely worth a look. It's described as a pale neutral pink but I would say it's a medium neutral pink. I'm still not a big fan of the 'plasticky' packaging but then again, anything short of the Rouge Volupte packaging is a disappointment. Although I love to wear pale pink, peaches and nudes everyday, they don't translate well in photographs. I find that shades that suit me in 'real life', kind of drain the colour from my face when a camera and flash is involved. So I have been searching for a slightly darker shade of pink from what I would usually wear. This shade really does remind me of a romantic, hazy, blush pink that is so pretty...
It has the usual smooth, silky formula, it's reasonably long lasting and feels moisturising. I've seen reviews of these lipsticks where people say they hate the fragrance but I really don't notice that. I don't find the smell overpowering at all. My YSL lipsticks are definitely my favourite and most used in my collection.
This is also the first pic with my lighter hair colour. Feels so much better now I've had it freshened up!
The other thing I wanted to get opinions on is whether they know of any lipstick sealant that doen's stink like Lipcote but has the same fixing effect. I need something to keep my lipstick in place all the way through the wedding day without having to re-apply it all the time.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Good Times/Bad Times


1) The wheels have been set in motion for my hen weekend in Edinburgh and luckily I have fantastic bridesmaids to help organise the whole thing. It’s taken such a weight off my shoulders coz I’ve got so many other things to sort out for the wedding. I’m currently running about 15 spreadsheets for various things…I’ve gone spreadsheet mad! I blame my fiancĂ©, Chris. He’s a chemical engineer and everything he does at work is input to spreadsheets so he kinda got me into that, adding formulas etc. I can’t believe it…he’s finally turned me into a geek!ha ha.
2) Korres Jasmine Lip Butter – This has been my best friend for a week now. I have been laying off my By Terry Rose De Balm as I don’t want to say goodbye to it just yet! I have had this Korres Lip Butter sitting in a drawer for a while so I decided to break it out and keep it in my drawer at work. I like to have one lip balm in my bag for when I’m on the go, one at work and one next to the bed at home. I know it’s over the top but I just hate having cracked or chapped lips! This lip butter contains Shea Butter and Rice Wax and it’s just divine. It totally melts onto your lips and it’s tinted with a nice natural sheeny colour so it gives you a look of being ‘polished’ even though you’re only wearing a lip balm. My lips feel so soft and smooth…love it!
3) I’m really trying to follow a good strict beauty regime ahead of the wedding (ok, I’ve got months to go but the longer I do it, the better results I will see I guess). So, I’ve been doing hair masks twice a week and face masks once a week. I’ve also been applying serum or essential oils to my face before moisturising to fade any blemish scars or uneven skintone, exfoliating my whole body once or twice a week and moisturising my whole body every night (essential since I’m wearing a strapless wedding dress). Chris has complained about the moisturising coz he doesn’t particularly like the ‘slimey’ effect it gives my skin but I said “tough!”…this is for the greater good!ha ha. He did say to me recently “wow, I never realised how much work girls have to put into their appearance until I moved in with you”. I would have liked to have kept up the pretence we had for the first couple of months of our relationship that I looked like this naturally, but I think the magic is somewhat ruined when your partner sees you with facemasks on, stinking of fan tan or on those days when you just can’t be bothered. I remember the first time he saw me without makeup on, I hated it, but he told me I looked lovely (I know I didn’t, but it meant a lot that he said it).
4) I’ve discovered two products this week that work really well together. Benefit Hello Flawless Powder in Shell – This is actually designed to be a powder foundation but it doesn’t have enough coverage for me so I have found a better use for it in my case. I have been applying it VERY lightly with a kabuki over the top of Korres Wild Rose Foundation, which can sometimes make my skin look a teensy bit too shiny by lunchtime. BUT when I apply the Hello Flawless powder in the morning over my foundation, it gives my skin a nice soft matte glow that lasts ages. My skin really looks so flawless when I use that combo without looking cakey or heavy. That’s what I was wearing in my last post about the Sleek Face Contour Kit. I wouldn’t apply this powder over a foundation like Revlon Colourstay as it would be too much but it’s great to set lighter foundations.
5) I was at the hairdresser last night and I felt like my hair was getting a bit dull so I asked her to lift the colour a bit. It’s got really nice creamy blonde shades in it now and I’m so happy with it. It’s amazing how the right hair colour can totally change your complexion and make it seem brighter. I woke up today and did my makeup and it all just looked so much better!
Bad Times

1) Woke up to heavy snow this morning that appeared from nowhere. Nuff said.

2) I haven’t been able to go to the gym lately since I’ve had a head cold that just won’t shift. I wasn’t totally watching what I was eating since I kept thinking about the old saying “feed a cold”. That person obviously didn’t have a wedding in 6 months time! I feel like I’ve taken a few steps backwards with my weightloss and I hate that feeling. I really need to kick start my healthy eating and exercise regime tonight (yes, gym on a Friday night…I mean business!). I just want to get that ‘feel good’ thing again and I should be back on track in about 2 weeks but I just want it now!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Bare Minerals Blush in Fruit Cocktail

I have been on the search for a good blusher for my wedding day and have heard good things about Bare Minerals. I already use their All Over Colour in Faux Tan and it's one of my staple products for everyday use. This blush, callled Fruit Cocktail looks scarily bright in the container (it's brighter in person)... However, when you swatch it, it's actually a really lovely luminous, soft pink blush that (as you would expect from Bare Minerals) is buttery smooth and really finely milled. You will see from the swatch below that's it's actually very subtle and wearable. Now if you aren't a fan of blushers with a bit of shimmer then this product isn't for you. The shimmer is very fine and I personally like it, it's not over the top or glittery (think Nars Albatross). There are days when I prefer soft matte blush BUT I really like the brightening effect this product has on my face.
It's described as having "complexion boosters that infuse colour into your skin so it looks like it’s coming from within" and adds "a silky coral pink glow to your complexion for a radiant finish". I have found that this shade of blusher brings life back into my face when it's looking a bit dull and it really brings out my blue eyes. I think this would suit most skin tones as it can be used very lightly for paler girls but you can build up the colour if you have darker skin. You only need a really small amount of the product to create a lovely natural flush on your cheeks like in the pic below...

So I am definitely going to put this in the 'maybe' category for my wedding day, the only thing that's holding me back is the fact that I'm going to be ordering MAC Dollymix blush this week as part of a haul and since I've heard people raving about it so much, I HAVE to give that a go too!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Sleek Face Contour Kit

Remember I said I was looking for a good matte contour powder and I was going to look for a MAC blush to do the trick?...Well, I have found a fantastic contour powder in the most unlikely of places... Yes, it's another product from Sleek and they have really excelled themselves with this one. I was a bit dubious when I saw the contour colour as it looked quite dark for my skintone. This compact is the Light version (also comes in Medium and Dark) and it costs £5.99. The compact also features a highlighting powder thats a super pale biscuit colour. The compact has the usual compact black packaging and mirror in the lid...
Please note that the swatches below are applied darker to show up on camera. The contour pressed powder swatches the same colour as Bare Minerals Faux Tan (my current favourite contouring powder). I have decided though that Faux Tan is slightly better suited to night time wear as it has the slightest amount of shimmer (very very small amount). I really wanted a matte powder with no shimmer whatsoever and this Sleek compact has totally delivered what I wanted. The highlighting powder looked slightly too shimmery when I applied it to my arm for the swatch but when applied lightly, it gives a really pretty effect.
I found that the best brush to apply the contour powder was my Bare Minerals Angled Contour Brush to really be precise about where I am placing the colour. You really don't need alot of product and a soft tap in the pan is enough. The contour powder is really blendable so you're not left with any patchy/streaky bits.
I wanted to give you a demonstration of how this product looks once applied to the skin (please keep in mind that I don't have defined cheekbones naturally!). However, the combination of the contour powder applied lightly in the hollows of my cheeks and highlight powder lightly dabbed along the very top of the cheekbones makes me look like have proper cheekbones! Hurrah! Yah for fooling people with clever makeup! (ignore my moody monday facial expression)
I love the way this powder is perfect for daytime use with it's matte formula. I think it gives a really natural and subtle effect. The compact comes with a guide on how to contour your cheeks, eyes and nose so for anyone who's not sure about where to place the product, this is a great way to introduce yourself to this type of product. I never thought I would find such a great product for such a reasonable price but I am so happy that I did. This product is going in my wedding makeup bag but I will be using Nars Albatross to highlight as it's just that bit more finely milled.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Link Love

theNotice has a three-part video series on how to contour your cheeks -- check out the first tutorial here!

MAC Mineralized SatinFinish gives off a beautiful finished look according to Eve's review at xLovelymakeupx.

Marina from MakeUp4All reviews and swatches on the cheeks Illamasqua's Cream Blusher in Rude and Illamasqua's Lipstick in Over.

Lipglossiping asks if the modern age has spawned demon digital artists.

This week, Louise wonders if the nude lip is all it's cracked up to be

Krasey Beauty takes you back to school with Skincare 101

Head over to Beautifully Glossy to check out L'oreal's Studio Secrets Resurfacing Primer.

It's Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago, so check out some makeup looks inspired by some of the costumes!

Jellyminx swatches her cream eyeshadows!

Lisamarie at Beauty Crazed visits the Benefit Brow Bar for the 15 minutes that changed her life.

Sarah over at I Heart Cosmetics has found a really cool new invention for your makeup brushes!

Liparazzi has found the perfect concealer to brighten up her life, put a boi-ing in her step and Benefit her on her wedding day.

Jo over at Music & Make Up is having a one year anniversary giveaway.

Lisa Kate from Sparkle is my Crack! shows you how to look like a Cheer Bear!

The Makeup Snob shares her opinions on a couple NYX lip and eye palettes.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Frederic Fekkai Full Volume

This shampoo and conditioner combo claim to "cleanse your hair whilst thickening it by enhancing every strand separately. It contains a special fortifying agent that adds noticeable body and volume to pump up fine, thin hair". I have found out from Lollipop26's blog that there is now a new formulation so I can only report on this older formulation that I have used (but can still be bought). I was really excited to use this shampoo and conditioner as I have fine hair that really needs a boost most days. I expected to get good results from these as there are alot of good online reviews.

However I really didn't like either the shampoo or the conditioner. They smell of lemon and I know they probably intended this to be a refreshing smell but it smells cheap for some reason, like it's too artificial or something. The shampoo lathers the way you would expect and you get the 'squeaky' clean feeling. No problems there. The conditioner is very light but and after using it I had real problems combing through my wet took twice as long as normal and I could hear my hair ripping. My hair didn't feel particularly 'conditioned', it felt stripped and tuggy.

When I dried my hair, I could see that the individual hairs had indeed expanded, but not in a good way. My hair felt quite frizzy and flyaway and it was obvious that although my hair had volume, it had lost all of it's good condition and silkiness. It didn't look healthy. This was a major disappointment considering the brand is expensive and quite high end.

So, my overall thoughts are that I was very disappointed in this combo. It hasn't put me off the whole brand as I've heard a few of their other products are very good. However, I will definitely do alot more research before getting any of them and I will have to keep an eye out for reviews on the new formulation to see if it's any better.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Wedding Makeup Stuff

I think I’ve found the perfect primer combo for my wedding day by mixing my moisturiser with Virgin Vie Skin Dew (a pearly pink skin illuminator), waiting for that to sink in and then applying a VERY thin layer of Lancome La Base Pro. That way, I get the subtle glow under my foundation that I want and my skin holds the foundation a lot better throughout the day. I’m still on a quest to find the perfect shade/formulation of foundation for my wedding day. I use Revlon Colourstay and lately I’ve been mixing Natural Beige and True Beige to get my perfect colour but I’m a bit worried that the Revlon CS foundation might look a bit heavy in natural light/photos. My favourite lighter foundations are Korres Wild Rose or Nars Sheer Glow but to be honest I’m not sure if they would last the whole day. Although they both photograph really well and give an airbrushed look when I’ve taken pics for my blog, I don’t want to be constantly checking for shine and I really don’t think I will have time on the day to touch up my makeup. I want a soft matte glow (if that makes sense) like the kind you get from MAC MSF Natural. One idea I had was to use the Korres or Nars foundations and then try setting them with Benefit Hello Flawless which is a cover up powder. I am going to experiment with that this weekend to see if it gives me the coverage I need without sacrificing any of the glow. In the meantime, I need some suggestions on what foundations to try – I’ve heard MUFE HD is good or Diorskin Forever. I basically want a medium coverage foundation that won’t make my skin look too opaque or heavy.

I want to find the perfect contouring powder. I always use Bare Minerals Faux Tan to contour my face however as I don’t want to go over the top on the day by wearing bronzer and then Faux Tan in the hollows of my cheeks (it’s weird how wedding makeup has to be different from your usual routine). I think it’s because everyone wants to look like they’re naturally beautiful on their wedding day, no one wants to look like they’re plastered in makeup. I guess it harks back to the whole white gown/virginal thing. So…I am thinking of looking into a matte blush that’s a few shades darker than my natural skin tone. That way I can contour without the look becoming overly bronzed. I have been looking at MAC Blush in Buff. If anyone has any suggestions, hit me back!

I never wear waterproof mascara because, well I don’t generally have a problem with it smudging/running and it’s a pain in the ass to remove at the end of the day! However, everyone keeps telling me to invest in a good waterproof mascara for my wedding day. I know I will cry at some point (or many points). So I will start looking into the best waterproof ones and also a good makeup remover to get the damn stuff off!

The funny thing is, even though I apply makeup every day and have done for the past 12 or 13 years, makeup that is suitable for photography is a whole different subject. You really have to think about the lighting and whether the flash will drain colour from your face. I’ve also had advice that you should define your features more strongly than what you usually do, so they show up in photographs…so I need to try and get a balance between defining my features and not looking too ‘done up’. Tricky. Although luckily I take photos for my blog so I already have a general idea of what works/doesn’t work.

I have already decided that the best highlighter for my skin on the day will be Nars Albatross as the powder formulation will avoid the ‘sweaty’ look that some other highlighters can create! I love how subtle this powder is and it gives just the right kind of glow. I will be sticking to applying this high on my cheekbones and on my collarbones since I’m wearing a strapless dress.

I want to wear a YSL Rouge Volupte but as everyone knows, these don’t last that long on the lips, so I may have to find a long lasting alternative! Sob. Although I’m a die hard fan of the nude lip, apparently pale lip colours can make you look washed out in photographs so I will have to experiment with some different shades and see what works best. Also, I intend to wear just a lipstick with no lipgloss as I don’t want our first kiss as husband and wife to be a big sticky mess!ha ha. I need to find a long lasting soft matte lippy that won’t dry out my lips…easier said than done! I have thought about using MAC Hue since it's a really nice natural pink...since there's not a MAC counter near me, I would really appreciate any recommendations on a nice pink MAC lipstick. I don't want anything too bright, just something quite natural (my lips but better). I think I just described MAC Hue.ha ha. Trust me to always be curious what else is out there. I could always try mixing Hue with Lovelorn and see if that brightens it up a bit.I also need to find some good Oil-blotting sheets to avoid excess shine and don't cause a build up of layered makeup, which is a major factor I want to avoid.

And now for some advice I have been given by some other bloggers...

  • "Flash photography emphasises pink tones, so it’s best to go with a yellow toned foundation to even out your skin tone".

  • "Using concealer is easier when you have the perfect shade. Don't go 1-2 shades lighter than your skin, as this actually makes the darkness appear more gray and muddy. Mix your concealer shade with a drop of your foundation and then apply because you want your skin tone to appear one even shade".

  • "Take a black or brown pencil and line the lashes on the outer 1/2 or 1/4 of the eye. Blend with a cotton bud (Q-tip). Then, take your mascara and a eyeliner brush, and lightly line the eye with your mascara. Once it's dried, smudge again, and you1ll find that your eyeliner will stay on forever. If your mascara is waterproof, that's even better".

I will be trying these tips out this weekend and will let you know how I get on.

I also found this blog, which lists loads of wedding makeup blogs/videos for all tastes...

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

More Wedding Stuff and My Weightloss Challenge

I have decided on my colour scheme for the venue will be ivory dressed tables/chair covers with pale apple green organza runners on the tables and matching ties for the chair covers. The centrepieces will alternate between tall lily vases.... And 3 varying sizes on each table of martini style glass vases with floating tea lights in them, the tallest will have ivy trailing down it....
I also want to get these gorgeous hourglass candle holders because I love the fact that you can enclose a fresh flower in the bottom beautiful...I have decided on a cake as well. I will be getting a cake from M & S Wedding Cakes for £199 (well I think it will be just as nice as a £600 one from a cake maker!). My florist has agreed to add this design to it, which I love because of the tumbling thistles...
I love all the organisational side of things, planning flowers and pretty things. It's slowly coming together and I want to enjoy every second leading up to it as well as the big day itself. The best thing about the whole wedding is that I am getting the best husband and mother & father in law I ever could have wished for. They truly are wonderful people so I am very lucky that I will be a part of their family.
On my weightloss journey, I have shed 2 stone 3lbs so far (that's 31lbs) and I still want to lose another stone before the big day in August. I figured if I lose 1lb per week then I can comfortably achieve my goal (allowing for off days in the coming months). I also don't want to set my wedding day as my overall goal as I have made a change in my lifestyle and I want to uphold that. I haven't been on any crazy diets or pills or anything. My weight loss has purely been from eating smaller portions (a side plate full of dinner instead of a big plate) and going to the gym 5 times a week (doing cardiovascular and light weights). I haven't been able to go to the gym for the past 3 days as I've been struck down with another cold but hopefully by the weekend I will be well enough to start going again.

Benefit Boi-ing Concealer

After reading Bubblegarm’s rave about this product, which is described by Benefit as ‘industrial strength’, I found myself coveting it immediately! I have been looking for a concealer with great staying power to use on my wedding day and I need one that will cover up any imperfections and make me look flawless. My skin is generally pretty good but you just never know when you’re going to have a breakout (I’ve got my fingers crossed that I don’t wake up on the morning of the wedding to a big fat throbbing spot on the end of my nose…it’s the stuff nightmares are made of!).
The first thing I noticed about this product was the packaging…a simple screw top pan, nothing fancy but very practical. I really like the no fuss packaging which allows easy access when applying with fingers, anything fiddly just leads to you getting concealer under your fingernails which is a pet hate of mine. You get quite a lot of product for your money compared to some other concealers packaged in a pot.
The consistency is creamy and relatively light and I didn’t notice any grittiness that other people have reported. On checking the ingredients, the main ones are petroleum jelly, corn oil and soybean oil which is probably the reason why it just glides onto the skin. It resisted creasing all day and has great staying power; the coverage lasted perfectly and really evened out my complexion.
I found that this concealer was particularly effective at covering up the redness around my nose and considering I’ve had a bad cold this week and have been constantly blowing my snout, it’s a miracle that I don’t look like Rudolph by now! I was amazed when I looked in the mirror and saw that the concealer had managed to last all day despite all the tissue abuse! Another issue I’ve had this week is bad skin. It’s that time of month and my cold has also led to me being rundown which for me, always reflects in my skin. I have a few blemishes on my chin (with one particularly bad one!) and jaw line and this concealer has been a life saver for covering them up completely. At first I tried applying it with a firm concealer brush but it felt like I was wiping the product off with every second stroke so I decided to switch to using my finger. This works a million times better. You have to warm it with your fingertips in the pan so the product is a little more “wet” and dab it lightly on your skin, rather than vigorously rubbing it in. It’s also important to ensure you’re not trying to apply too much at one time, I’ve heard reports of cakey-ness which I didn’t notice so just apply it thinly. As you already know, concealer always works best when you apply really thin layers, rather than trying to lump on a whole load at once. It’s the type of product that’s only brilliant if you apply it properly and with the right technique. Once you have mastered that, you’re flying!
Now on to the cons. I’m a big believer in using different concealer formulas for different areas of the face. I wouldn’t use this as an under-eye concealer as I personally don’t like applying anything remotely heavy on the delicate skin around my eye. This concealer is a brilliant consistency for blemishes and covering up uneven skin tone but not brilliant on the eye area. I prefer to use a lighter formula with light reflecting properties as it’s less likely to settle into creases. Another downside to the product is that there are only three shades – Light, Medium and Dark. Medium suits my complexion at the moment but if I stopped using my Dove gradual tanner then it definitely wouldn’t suit my skin. This means I will probably buy the Light shade so I can mix and get my perfect colour. Although it’s not ideal to have to do this, I think the product is so good, that I am happy to buy another shade in order to tailor it to my skin tone. So it really depends on whether concealer is something you don’t mind spending money on. I have spent a lot of money trying different concealers over the last few months so in my eyes, having to get two shades of this one to get my HG concealer is worth it.

I will definitely be using this on my wedding day, together with Korres Wild Rose Brightening Concealer under my eyes.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Good Times/Bad Times


1) Myself and Chris are finally starting to get everything pieced together for the wedding in August and we are well within our budget. Although everyone always says “wow, you’re REALLY organised”, we’ve had to be, because most of the guests are coming from places like Ireland and New Zealand so they have to book their flights well in advance. The only things that need to be sorted now are a final decision on the decoration of the venue, bridesmaid’s corsages and men’s buttonholes, a final decision on my hairstyle/makeup and our first dance song – suggestions welcome because I’m struggling to choose one that isn’t super cheesy or clichĂ©d!

2) We are heading to Sirdal, Norway on the first weekend of March with a big group of friends to go skiing…and it’s my first time! Eek! Chris bought me all the skiing gear for Christmas so I am all decked out now. I chose nice shades of varying blue of course…I’m such a girl.ha ha. I am nervous but excited about the whole thing. If anything it will be a great laugh and I will take lots of photos to show you guys…but I may edit out any of me falling on my ass!

3) The snow has finally gone! But shhhh…I better not speak too soon in case it comes back! It’s been a real pain over the past few weeks and I know it’s a shallow complaint but I haven’t been able to wear ANY of my new high heel shoes! It’s hard to find ‘sensible’ shoes to wear with a dress on a night out!

1) The January blues. A lot of people seem to go on a real downer in January and it creates a really depressing mood, whether it be lack of money, because Christmas is over or because they are starting a diet/quitting smoking/some other resolution that makes people cranky. I don’t really get the blues in January because I tend not to make resolutions at that time, there’s just too much pressure. I like to mix it up and make resolutions at other times of the year, that way you don’t have people asking you every minute of every day how you are handling it. The way I see it though, life is way too short to walk around feeling down all the time. Yes, everyone has bad times and situations that are tough, but you have to stay positive and remember all the good things in your life that you have to be thankful for. I had a really tough time last week which I won’t go into but I had to just cut the ties I had to all the bad feelings, let them go and get on with being happy. I mean, when you see things like the Haiti Earthquake disaster on TV, it really makes you realise how lucky you are!

2) Being ill - JUST after I had got over my chest infection/Pneumonia, I caught a head cold this week and my head is pounding. I'm sick of being sick!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

ELF Bronzed Mineral Glow

Sometimes ELF products can be a bit hit and miss but I've found that the Studio and Mineral lines have been my favourite. I've found another great product in the shape of their Bronzed Mineral Glow... I'm generally not a big fan of loose powders as they can be messy and you always end up piling too much on your brush. However, as long as you store this pot upright, the powder only comes out when you tap it into the lid. And even when you do tap it in, it doesn't all tip out like some other products can. There has been alot of makeup coloured stains on my carpets in the past! You can control this more to an extent.
I prefer mineral powder as they are generally very finely milled and overall they are kinder to your skin. This powder has very very slight shimmer but it's only visible when you swatch it quite thickly on your hand. The shimmer doesn't show up on your face and that makes it brilliant for daytime use. No one wants to be all shimmery in the harsh daylight! The colour is very natural and just lifts the complexion to create a more healthy, glowing complexion.
At £5.00, I think this is really good value for money as you get quite alot of product and I think it would also last a long time, given that you're not wasting any of it. I love the subtle effect it gives and I reckon I will keep buying this in the future as an everyday inexpensive staple product. They also do a pink toned one that is designed to brighten the complexion so I would be interested to find out what that's like.
Has anyone else tried this product?

Friday, January 15, 2010

What I'm Using Now

I always love reading these types of posts as I like to know what other people are loving right now and what works for them. I always end up adding at least one thing to my product lust list along the way! So, here's my list of products that are really working for me at the moment:

1) Primer: Estee Lauder Illuminating Primer
2) Foundation: Nars Sheer Glow
3) Concealer: Korres Wild Rose Concealer (Eyes) and MUFE Concealer Palette (blemishes)
4) Powder: YSL Matte & Radiant
5) Bronzer: Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess
6) Blush: Nars Deep Throat
7) Highlighter: Nars Albatross & Benefit High Beam
8) Eyeshadow Base: Various but mainly MAC Paint Pot in Painterly
9) Eyeshadow: I'm loving MAC Naked Lunch, Satin Taupe and a teensy bit of Carbon
10) Liner: Estee Lauder Double Wear pencil in Black Plum & MAC Pearlglide in Black Russian
11) Mascara: Rouge Bunny Rouge Amplitude - I have been asked a few times if I'm wearing false lashes when I've been wearing ONE coat of this mascara!
12) Face Wash: Vichy Rose Essentieles or Neutrogena Visibly Clear for spotty days!
13) Cleanser: ASDA Tea Tree & Witch Hazel Face Wipes
14) Eye Cream: Nude Advanced Eye Complex
15) Serum: Nude Advanced Smoothing Complex
16) Moisturiser: Vichy Rose Essentieles (day) & Kiehls Panthenol Protein (night)
17) Body Moisturiser: Kiehls Creme De Corps
18) Shampoo: Philip Kingsley Pure Silver - this stops my hair from looking brassy between hairdresser appointments.
19) Conditioner: Alternate between Philip Kingsley Pure Silver Conditioner and Lee Stafford Hair Growth Treatment
20) Perfume: BOSS Orange (day) & YSL Elle (night)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Nars Deep Throat Blush & Wedding Stuff

I've heard about this blush for ages so naturally I was curious...I had previously bought Nars Orgasm blush a couple of years ago and despite it's cult status, I wasn't that impressed. I don't know if it was just my skin or whatever but it didn't really show up so the way I saw it, I was just applying shimmer to my cheeks - not what you want from a blush. But how is it possible that a blush from the same brand could be worlds apart from it's cult cousin? Enter Nars Deep Throat Blush, the perfect peach blush for me...When swatching this, I couldn't believe the difference in the texture! It's so different from how I remember Nars Orgasm. Deepthroat is really blendable, buttery smooth and has the perfect amount of oomph for my skintone. As soon as I apply it, my face looks healthier and brighter, I love products that have such an instant 'wow' effect. Although the blush contains shimmer, it's not overpowering and I didn't notice my cheeks being too shimmery. The subtle flecks just add a bit of radiance to your complexion which is perfect. I think I've found the perfect blusher for my wedding makeup! I would be interested to know what everyone thinks of it?I'm dedicating this section of the post to Camilla and Michelle who are also getting married this year! Yah!Since I had so many messages/comments asking me to do updates on stuff I have booked/bought for the wedding, I figured a quick update was in order. In case any of you guys missed my post about my wedding dress, then you can see pics of my wedding dress here. You can see how the dress moves on this You Tube runway show for the designer. My dress comes down the catwalk 5 mins and 20 secs into the vid. It has different coloured embellishment (mine is clear and pearl) but other than that it's the same. It's a gorgeous french taffeta/silk which means it's got a lovely sheen in the light. It's amazing, I was awe struck when I saw it. It's stunning and there's such beautiful detail on it. It's by an Italian designer and just has that flair that I wanted. I can't wait to wear it!!!

I have finally decided on a beautiful is this...I am absolutely in love with it and it will look amazing in the photos! It's exactly what I wanted so I'm really happy with it. I decided that the bridesmaids could wear corsages instead of lugging around posies all day. I think these ones are really pretty but I haven't decided on a final one yet...My mum has her eye on this cuff/corsage! I think it's really contemporary, it's simple and chic and suits her down to the ground...I have also just bought a hair comb to attach my veil to my hair (I'm planning on having my hair up for the ceremony then down for the evening). This comb is vintage style with pearls and crystals and I just thought it was so pretty and suited the dress perfectly. It's not too over the top but it will just be a nice detail. I won't be wearing any jewellery with the dress apart from my rings coz I wanted the dress to do all the talking! I hope you guys enjoyed having a peek into al this stuff. It's just the best time of my life right now and I feel so blessed and lucky. Let me know if you are planning a wedding!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Wedding Hair

I still haven't fully decided what to do with my hair on the big day (it's not really that long now...1st August!) but I have been collating images of hairstyles I like for some inspiration...
As you can see the theme of my hair inspiration is a kind of 'undone boho chic' and I don't want anything that looks too fussy or slicked back. I'm thinking classic and chic.
So have any of you guys got any tips on hair products that last the distance/create great volume that I could look into?
Although, just to COMPLETELY contradict myself...another part of me really wants the 1940's/50's glamourous 'Rita Hayworth-esque' starlet hair like this (minus the red lipstick!)...
I need opinions!