Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Outfit Post - Body Shop Event


Outift: Top: Cameo Rose @ New Look | Leigh Jeans: Topshop | Shoes: Primark | Necklace: New Look | Rings: New Look | Nails: Models Own 'Blueberry Muffin'
Face: Rimmel Wake Me Up foundation, Rimmel Stay Matte powder, Nars Laguna bronzer, YSL blush radiance no.2, Mac 'Crème Cup' lipstick, Topshop 'Wave Goodbye' lip crayon, YSL touché éclat, Rimmel eyeliner, Lancôme Hypnose mascara
This was my outfit and makeup for the Body Shop event on Friday. I decided to stick with the trusty monochrome trend and add a touch of neon with my new necklace which I LOVE. I also picked up Models Own blueberry muffin from their new scented fruit pastel collection. It's such a pretty pale blue colour, and it really does smell like blueberries! I've had it on for four days now and I can still smell it. I think I'll try a couple more from the collection, maybe the pale yellow 'Banana Split'.
Hope you're having a lovely week!
Holly xo

Monday, April 29, 2013

Body Shop Event

On Friday I was lucky enough to attend the Body Shop event, organised by the lovely Maddie. This was my first blogger event because unfortunately I missed the FABB event as I was working. I went to the event alone and even though I knew that a lot of the other bloggers would know each other already from the FABB event, I wasn't really worried as I had a good feeling that everyone would be really friendly. And I couldn't have been more right! I made some lovely new friends.
We were greeted with glasses of bucks fizz (which we quickly polished off as you can see) and a delicious selection of cake, Millie's cookies and jellies. Naturally, as a secret fatty, I was in my element.

We were then given the opportunity to do what us beauty bloggers do best - sample, swatch and shop. Maddie and her colleagues were on hand to give us advice and tell us more about the products, as well as offering free skin consultations, mini makeovers and hand massages. We were offered 50% off all products so of course we all filled our baskets with skincare, body and hair products and makeup.

Before this event, I really liked the Body Shop. Now, after having a proper look around, learning more about the products and seeing the full range that they offer - I LOVE the Body Shop. Everything in the store smells amazing, the range of products is really impressive and the products are also cruelty free, meaning that none of the products are tested on animals.
At the end of the night, we were all given goodie bags which included six samples of Body Shop products, a Madagascan vanilla flower shower gel and a selection of vouchers for places like Millie's cookies and Pizza Hut. We were also gifted with a huge loaf of freshly baked bread each from the lovely people at the French Oven! It was delicious.
 Kate, Anna, Katie, Me and Faith with all our goodies!

(^ photo from the lovely Amy!)

As well as the free goodies we all got, I picked up a few bits with the generous 50% discount - I chose the famous body butter in Satsuma (which I can't stop smelling and forcing other people in my house to smell because it is utterly amazing), a mini body butter in Lemon, the seaweed ionic clay mask, a headband to keep hair off face when applying said clay mask and two gorgeous scented candles in green tea and lemon and mandarine and tangelo (I had no idea the Body Shop sold candles - they smell beautiful).

I am so glad I got to attend this event. I came home with a great selection of products to try out and review for you all, and more importantly, some new beauty blogger friends.
I can't wait for the next event!


Tomorrow an outfit post of what I wore to the event will be going up, hope you enjoy!

Holly xo

Friday, April 26, 2013

Week in Pictures #2

Cheese and pepper bites | An exciting invitation I received to the Vintage Cosmetic Company's press day next month! | Beatles T-shirt | New Amazon dotting tools | Moroccanoil - it's so tiny! | My mam and dog having a cuddle | My nasty neighbour doesn't like where I park so tried (and failed) to make a point | My boyfriend Sean and his cat Taz | #TBT my moody face has never changed ha!

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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Deep Cleaning Your Makeup Brushes

Over the last month I've really become interested in skincare and trying to improve the look and condition of my skin. One very important, but often neglected step in this quest for perfect skin is deep cleaning your makeup brushes. After all, there's no point cleansing, toning and moisturising if you're going to apply your makeup with dirty brushes every day, is there? The build-up of dirt and bacteria on makeup brushes can cause spots, and we all want to avoid those pesky little things. Experts recommend cleaning your brushes every 1-2 weeks, but it's so easy to forget, or to simply avoid as it's not the most exciting job in the world. I'm going to really try and give my brushes a deep clean at least every couple of weeks to make sure I'm applying my makeup with clean bacteria-free tools.
Now, you can give your brushes a quick cleanse using an instant brush cleanser (MAC and Estee Lauder sell these, for example), but you should still deep clean them regularly to make sure you've removed all traces of makeup and dirt.
Here are the steps I take to deep clean my brushes:

You can wash your brushes using mild shampoo, washing up liquid or soap. I personally like to use a delicate soap as I find this is perfect for removing all the makeup from my brushes, and the pump dispenser makes the job so much easier.

Step 1: Wash your hands

You're going to be using your hands to clean the brushes so you want them to be clean too so that you don't transfer the bacteria from your hands back onto the brushes.

Step 2: Rinse the brush

Hold the brush vertically, making sure the water doesn't run down into the brush as this can loosen the glue that holds the brush fibres, causing your brush to moult (and if you've spent a fair bit of money on good quality brushes, you don't want them falling to bits).

Step 3: Dispense the soap onto the brush or into your hand

I personally like to dispense it directly onto the brush, but it really makes no difference as step 4 is the same either way.

Step 4: Swirl the brush and soap around on the palm of your hand

This is the part where you can see all the nastiness that's been clinging to your makeup brush, and if you're like me, you feel a bit guilty that you hadn't washed them sooner! Keep rinsing your hand when it gets covered in soapy makeup residue, then swirl the brush around again until all the makeup is gone.

Step 5: Rinse the brush again

Again, be sure not to let the water run down into the brush - keep it vertical. Make sure you rinse until all the soap is gone.

Step 6: Wring out the excess water
 Don't squeeze or pull the brush too hard as you don't want to risk loosening or pulling out any of the brush fibres.

Step 7: Re-shape the brush and leave it to dry

When the brush is damp, you need to re-shape it so that it dries in the right shape. Then leave the brush to dry on some kitchen roll or a clean towel. You could do this in the evening so that your brushes can dry overnight, or on a day when you don't intend to wear makeup.

And voila! Now you have lovely clean brushes to apply your makeup with.

I'm sure a lot of you already know how to deep clean your makeup brushes but I hope this helped those of you who were a little bit unsure :)
Hope you're having a great week,

Holly xo
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Monday, April 22, 2013

Review || Max Factor Miracle Touch Creamy Blush

Hiya girls. It's April, so even if the weather doesn't want to play along, we are officially into Spring now. So recently I've been looking for new additions to my makeup collection that will revamp my look for the new season. One of the key looks that I associate with Spring is definitely dewy rosy cheeks, and I thought the best way to achieve this natural-looking glow would be to invest in a new cream blush.
I'm really excited for the launch of the new Bourjois cream blushes but since they aren't going to be in stores until mid-May (the 15th according to the Sunday Girl), I thought I would try the Max Factor Miracle Touch Creamy Blush as my first venture into the world of cream blush.

I chose the shade 'soft pink', which I was told was the bestselling shade in the range and I would describe it as a lovely coral pink. Max Factor claim that these blushes 'add a radiant dewy flush to all skin-types' and I do think they deliver on this promise. The creamy texture of these blushes gives a really natural and glowy look to the cheeks, and is perfect paired with a slightly dewy foundation (such as the Rimmel Wake Me Up foundation).
Now, the only issue I have with this blush is with its application. This may be due to my lack of experience with applying cream blush but I find this can be quite difficult to blend nicely. The lady at the Max Factor counter advised me to apply the blush to the apples of my cheeks, with my fingers using circular motions. I tried this, but I found that it looked slightly blotchy. I then tried first applying it first with my fingers and then blending out with my Real Techniques buffing brush, and this gave a much more natural finish. I've since ordered the Real Techniques stippling brush as I've heard this is perfect for applying cream blushes, so hopefully that will enhance the look of this blush even more.

Left: Swatched        |        Right: Blended

 (Sorry for the less-than-flattering photo ha!)

So overall, I am enjoying this blush and I do think it is the perfect addition to my makeup collection for Spring. I don't think I will be re-purchasing this though as I'd like to try some cream blushes from other ranges to see how they compare in terms of colour and application.
You can buy the Max Factor Miracle Touch Creamy Blush here for £6.99.

What is your must-have Spring makeup item?

Holly xo

Saturday, April 20, 2013

My Handbag Collection || River Island

Hi everyone, so today I wanted to post something a little bit different. I don't know about you but I think River Island do some of the best handbags on the high street. They offer great quality, diverse styles and they don't break the bank! I realised the other day that all four of my handbags are from River Island and I love them all, so I thought I could show you them.

The first bag in my collection is also my most-used, that's why it looks a bit battered. It has served me well for the past year and a half. It's faux leather, but fairly unstructured and has a magnetic stud fastening. This set me back around £35 I think, so for the amount of use I've gotten out of it, that's next to nothing!

This is my newest handbag, my mam bought it for me for Christmas last year. It was around £45 I believe. It's structured and made from faux green leather. I love the gold zip detail. I've never had a bag that fastens like this. It's not the most practical bag as it can be quite tricky to get into since the zip fastening doesn't open very wide, but I get so many compliments when I use this, no one can believe it's from River Island. Unfortunately this has been scuffed a little bit which is entirely my own fault as I had it hanging on my curtain hook in my room and it got scuffed on the radiator. I'm heartbroken about it, but it still looks lovely.

This gorgeous tan satchel was my go-to bag last Summer. It's perfect for shopping trips, cocktails with friends and chilling out in a beer garden. Tan is a colour that goes with pretty much anything I think so I knew I needed a tan bag in my collection. This bag also has a magnetic stud fastening and it comes with a long adjustable strap too in case you want to wear it over the shoulder. Featuring the usual gold River Island logo and some faux metal buckles, I think it's the perfect bag for Spring/Summer.

This is probably my favourite bag in my collection. This large leather-look tote bag looks so much more expensive than it was (£45) if you ask me. I use this for university every day as it has two extra compartments which are perfect for storing my notebook and planner. The middle compartment features a gold magnetic stud fastening, as well as an inner zip pocket for storing little extras. I just love this bag, it's so on trend all year round and despite its size, it's fairly lightweight (unless you fill it to the brim with stuff like I do).

Where is your favourite handbag from?

Holly xo

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Review || Revlon Lip Butter in 'Strawberry Shortcake'

I've been wanting to try the Revlon lip butters for so long now but two things were putting me off: 1) I was worried that the formula would be a bit sheer for my liking as I like a lot of colour pay-off from my lip products and 2) every time I went to swatch them in stores, the testers were disgusting, they were always really melted and mangled and that really put me off purchasing one - no one wants a melty mangled lipstick do they?

However, I called into Boots this week and saw they had a 3 for 2 offer on, so I thought that would be the perfect time to try out some products that I've been meaning to purchase for a while. So I picked up the lip butter in 'Strawberry Shortcake' which is a pale pink shade.
I have to say, the Revlon lip butters are so different to any other lip product I've tried. They are essentially a lip balm but the colour pay-off is actually really good (in this shade anyway). They are really hydrating and moisturising on the lips whilst also adding a fairly subtle but noticeable wash of colour to the lips. I hope it won't end up in the same state as the testers as the bullet is pretty firm, though a little bit did chip off the top when I was applying it to take the pictures below (bad sign!).

The colour is buildable so you can apply more product if you want the colour to stand out more. I wouldn't say these are my favourite lip products I've ever tried but I do really like them, and I probably will buy another shade from the range, though I'm not in a massive rush to do so as at £7.99 they're not the cheapest lip products around. I think this shade will be really nice for Spring and for days when I'm looking for a bit of colour on my lips but don't feel like applying a heavy lipstick.
Have you tried the Revlon lip butters? Which other shades would you recommend?
Holly xo

Week in Pictures #1

Cocktails with the girls | My stepbrother doing my best friend's makeup (brush was clean don't worry) | My laser teeth whitening experience - a total disaster (would you like a review?) | First sun dress of the year purchased | #TBT me and my little sister in 2001 | Revolution chocolate mess dessert | My new favourite novel | Latest Topshop lipstick purchase, 'Pillow Talk'

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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Recent Beauty Buys #1

Hi, I'm Holly, and I am a beauty junkie. The first step is admitting it, right?
I take so much pleasure in wandering around Debenams, Boots, Superdrug, John Lewis etc, trying out products and deciding which ones I'm ready to add to my collection. So I thought I would start up a new series of posts entitled 'Recent Beauty Buys' to show you which products I've picked up lately and my initial thoughts on them. So here's what I've bought this past week:
Firstly, on Sunday I went to apply my favourite 'drugstore' foundation, the Rimmel Wake Me Up foundation, and it was just about empty, so I immediately re-purchased it. This foundation is amazing, if you haven't tried it yet, you are really missing out. It provides medium coverage with a natural, radiant finish, and it is totally purse-friendly.
Vichy Aqualia Thermal Rich
I have been looking for a new staple moisturiser for a while now, and originally I wanted to try the Vichy Idealia, but then I saw Em from EmTalks mention the Vichy Aqualia Thermal in a recent post, and I decided to try that instead as it claims to provide 48 hour hydration for normal-dry skin (which is my skin type), and that is exactly what I was looking for. It's also slightly cheaper than the Vichy Idealia. This cream is so soft and nourishing and a little goes a very long way, so this 50ml pot should last me quite a long time. It also smells like after sun so it reminds me of being on holiday which always makes me happy, so that's a great pick-me-up when I'm applying this in the morning before my makeup.
Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau So Fresh
Perfume is probably one of my most neglected beauty products, I've never bought it for myself. It's something I always get for my birthday or Christmas rather than purchase myself. After seeing so many bloggers showcasing their beautiful perfume collections recently, I suddenly had the urge to treat myself to a new one. I knew I wanted one that had a beautiful bottle that I could proudly display on my dressing table and I thought Marc Jacobs Daisy would be perfect. I can't even explain how much I love this perfume bottle. It is so feminine and pretty, the large white, pink and yellow flowers adorning the lid make the bottle really stand out. I'm terrible at describing scents, but as the name suggests, this perfume is fresh, floral and fruity 'with notes of ruby red grapefruit, raspberry, green leaves, pear, violet, lychee, apple blossom, rose, jasmine with woody notes of musk and cedar'. I got this 75ml bottle on eBay for £28 - it's normally £48 so I was really pleased with this bargain.
Natural Collection Blushed Cheeks in 'Pink Cloud'
I picked up this blush with my Boots advantage card points. It's only £1.99 which is a total steal. This shade is a lovely baby pink, it gives the cheeks a really natural-looking flush of colour. It doesn't have amazing staying power, but that's to be expected for the price. I've been using this nearly every day since I bought it and I'm really enjoying it.
Topshop Lip Crayon in 'Wave Goodbye'
I am a massive fan of Topshop lipsticks, I actually added another one to my collection just yesterday, but I had never tried their lip crayons. On a recent trip I decided to swatch them and I was so surprised by their formulation, particularly this shade - 'wave goodbye'. It has an amazing glossy finish but is also really pigmented. It's love. This shade is a lovely pale pink and is so wearable. It's also fairly easy to sharpen, which I have done twice now as I've been using it so much. I can't wait to try some more shades of the Topshop lip crayons because I am so impressed with this one.
I hope you enjoyed this post, I'm sure there will be a lot more like this as I have a slight spending problem at the minute. I suppose I might as well make the most of being able to afford to splurge on beauty products while I don't have bills to pay.
Thanks for reading!
Have you tried any of these products? What have you picked up recently?
Holly xo