Friday, December 27, 2013

Merry Christmas, New Year Plans & Twistband : Mini Review

I'm back after a lovely few days chilling and eating with my family. 

I hope you all had a brilliant Christmas! I have been extremely spoilt by all my friends and family and I am extremely greatful - I've got lots to blog about! Stuff i wouldnt normally buy myself, so watch this space!

I have alot of plans for my blog in the new year - I love doing it and I would like to make it more of a priority - a New Years Resolution I think, to make sure I blog at least once a week. Any ideas of suggestions from you would be great! 

Also, I reached 1000 views!! Thank you guys so much for coming to my blog and reading the crap I type.  It really means alot. 

Anyway, on with the review.

I got this product in the December Birchbox - (I promise I'll post about it soon!) This was probably the only product out of the box that i was excited in using. Quite sad really, how excited i got over a bobble. Anyway, Twistband was created by a woman who found that normal bobbles hurt her head and her wrist which I can get too. She decided to use a soft piece of elastic and that's where the idea came from. 

The Twistband is supposed to secure your hair with minimum kinkage, drag and breakage to your hair, which isn't exactly the easiest thing to measure. To try out these claims, I wore this overnight, and when normally I would wake up with a kink in my hair with a conventional bobble, the kink from the Twistband was near enough non existent. There was a very slight kink, however, I didn't have to straighten my hair to disguise it.

The only thing I wasn't impressed with was the price. £10 for 6 of these seems quite ridiculous, when you can buy 50 bobbles from Primark from £2. If you really are dedicated to keeping your hair in tip top condition and want to do as little as possible to damage your hair, it might be a worthy investment. I think I'll stick with the 1 for now.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Lush Lip Scrub VS ELF Lip Exfoliator

Lush Lip Scrub Bubblegum : £5.50
ELF Lip Exfoliator : £3.75

Looking after my lips is something I need to start taking seriously, especially in these winter months. Ive got 2 products that are dedicated to removing dead, flakey skin from the lips, leaving a smooth base for lipstick application. I do like both products, but I find both have pros and cons and I often find myself reaching for one more than the other.

The Lush Lip Scrub is in the flavour Bubblegum and I'm sure they do loads more flavours. The loose mixture of sugar and jojoba oil is designed to gently remove dead skin whilst moisturising. The bubblegum flavour is for when you lick the product off afterwards. That bit I really couldn't get used to. I dunno, for some reason licking bubblegum flavoured dead skin isn't something I fancy doing, so I usually wipe this off with a cotton pad. Application is easy - place a little of the product out of the pot onto the lips and rub together. I don't find this super moisturings, so I normally follow with a lip balm to give  a boost of hydration. 

The ELF studio Lip Exfoliator is different in its application as it is in Lipstick form. I'm not too sure what the 'Hard Bits' are in this product, they are explained on their website, however the moisturising agents include Vitamin E, Shea Butter and Jojoba Oils. This product is soo much more moisturing that the Lush one. I find the after feeling alot more luxurious on my lips, however, I really can't see past the applicaiton of the product. I apply this in the same way I would a lipstick, and I find the 'hard bits' really, really hurt. Don't get me wrong, it does a brilliant job at removing dead skin, afterall that is its job, but I don't use it as often as I would like purely because of the pain it inflicts. The bits scratch at my lips - its such a shame because I love its moisturising properties. Maybe mine was a bad batch? I don't know.  I also feel abit put off by the idea that my dead skin can be left on the product due to the way its designed - you don't have this issue with the lush one. 

Have you tried these products? What did you think?

Monday, December 16, 2013

Review: Laura Mercier Long Lash Mascara

Another Birchbox product I was extremely excited to try, with my excitement not at all dampened by my experience with the hyped up radiance primer from Laura Mercier as I hadn't seen a single review on this. First of all I love getting mascara samples - they are perfect to fit into you handbag and are super cute. Previous sample mascaras that I've gotten from other brands have lasted really well, and I expect this one to be no different - if even better!

I think this product will really cause a divide for mascara wearers -  I personally love it, but I know this is the type of mascara that my best friend would hate. This mascara dramatically lengthens my lashes, with a nice, smooth coating of the product left behind & no clumping. I don't find that it gives much volume, but that's exactly why I like it. It almost looks like I've had eyelash extensions - its not obvious I have mascara on, it makes me look like I have super long super black eyelashes - great for 'no make-up' days. I'm an eye rubber, especially when I'm tired and I've found that even after a good rubbing session (that sounded much better in my head) I still look relatively fresh with minimal panda eyes. 

The full size of this retails for around £18.50 and I'm seriously considering purchasing this when my sample runs out. 

Laura Mercier - Radiance Foundation Primer Review

I've heard a lot about Laura Mercier in a number of the blogs I follow, with both the foundation and primer ranges being highly praised. When I saw I was going to receive this in my Birchbox subscription (I ALWAYS check the spoilers) I was sooo excited. I wanted to try a product out from the range as I find that the brand is priced out of my guilt free price range at around £30 for a foundation, I just cant justify that spend before I know if its a product I will love. 

This primer at full size costs £28 and claims to create a 'soft focus' on the skin and can reduce the look of imperfections whilst leaving your make-up looking fresh and colour true. I've had this for about a month now and i use this almost every day (its a really generous sample size & a little really does go a long way) so i really do feel like i can make an informed comment on the product. 

MEH. I cant really say that it did much for my - it definitely didn't make my skin appear more radiant - maybe my make-up stayed looking fresh for longer but nothing really noteworthy changed about my overall make-up look. I've used much better primers for about 1/3 of the price, so i was really disappointed, Maybe it was too hyped up on-line? Or just not suited for my combination skin? Who knows, but I definitely wont be rushing out to buy it.

 P.S - Birchbox are offering new subscribers a free bracelet when they sign up! & you can cancel your subscription whenever you want. 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Coconut Oil Hair Shine from The Body Shop

can't even remember how long I've had this product - it's one I completely take for granted and I shouldn't because it completely transforms my hair. 

I purchased this purely for the smell alone. Although I hate the taste of coconut, the smell is absolutely Devine in hair and body products, and this is no exception. The product comes in wax form in a small tin - as I said I've had mine for a very long time - maybe 1 year? And with regular use I still haven't managed to make a dint in the amount of product - a little really does go a long way. 

I definitely don't use it for shine - although this is a bonus. On my lazy hair days (which are becoming more and more frequent) I will let my hair air dry, often without a single product in it and wake up with the bottom part of my hair extremely frizzy and unmanageable. This part of my hair is badly damaged through colour treatments and simply not getting regular hair cuts, so if I do nothing with it it really does look horrible. 

I use this product by rubbing my fingers into the tin to heat it up until my fingers are lightly covered, then run this through the ends of my hair.  I literally only have to use the tiniest bit of product to diffuse the frizz and smooth out any visible split ends, giving a sleek finish to what 30 seconds ago was a lions Maine. 
I know this product wouldn't work on the roots of my hair as a shine boost as I find it is just far too greasy and almost encourages more oil production in the scalp, but for the purpose of reducing frizz and smoothing split ends, there really isn't a better product. 

I got this at the body shop for £5.50. Bargain! 

Monday, December 9, 2013

Rimmel Apocalips - Liquid Lipstick Review

If you are a regular reader of beauty blogs, you will already have read hundreds of reviews about these beauties. 

Whilst I find the formula of these rather stinky ( yes, stinky, not sticky) they glide on to the lips like an absolute dream and once they are there they stay put. I really do feel like they have abit of a dodgy whiff to them, but this doesn't transfer to a bad taste which I'm really happy about, because I cant wear lip products that taste bad. I know your not supposed to ear them, its not like I get an afternoon craving for lip gloss! 

The pigmentation of these is out of this world, I have never tried anything like it - one swipe and you have a block of opaque, gorgeous colour. But saying that, i find that they are really easy to work with and if you want more of a subtle look, you can easily achieve this with a thin layer and some blotting. 

I also find that the two shades I have - Celestial and Eclipse are super glossy but not at all sticky. Eclipse is a really deep red with plum undertones and is probably one of the most dark lip colours I own. I personally think it flatters my super pale complexion but would work with pretty much all skin tones. 

Celestial is a nudish pink shade with i also love, almost 'my lips but better', another shade I think that will work great on all skin tones. 

I'm not too sure how many shades they have, but i do know that when i have a few spare pennies I will be heading down to my nearest store to pick up some more. At £6.99, id say these were one of my favourite products of the year! 

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

My Favourite Bloggers!

The reason I got into blogging in the first place is because I have always been a great lover of beauty and trying out new products, but, like most people nowadays, I'm also addicted to the internet and I'm always looking for a good deal! Beauty blogs are one of the best ways to get genuine product reviews, hints of where to buy at the best prices, and often what products really arn't worth the money. I found myself visiting the same blogs over and over again, finding bloggers who were using the products I use or wanted to use and even when I wasn't looking for product reviews, I'd head over just to see if they had updated. An obsession was born! 

To keep track of all of the blogs I follow ( there are hundreds!) I started using  app on my phone called Bloglovin' (I recommend you get it and follow me, then you will never miss out on my updates!). All new blog posts are put in an easy format for you to filter through, and I catch up with my favorites everyday!

These are some of my favorite blogs ever!

Lily Melrose is an English Beauty / Fashion blogger - she has 2 separate blogs for each category, Her blog is by far my favorite - I love her style and fashion sense & have bought products on her recommendation that are now some of my holy grail products. If you are just getting into following blogs, hers is a brilliant one to start on!

This girl is absolutely stunning! She is a beauty / fashion / lifestyle blogger from Glasgow and posts some of the most amazing beauty looks - i wish i could blend the way she does. I follow her on instagram too, and she posts fitness inspo with her amazing clean food! 

The name says it all really - frank and honest reviews on best value products - if its worth the money she will tell you. She is always on the look out for the best deals so for me this is a great blog to check into! 

This was one of the first blogs I started following - mainly a fashion / lifestyle / home design blog. The pictures she shares of her home are amazing - too cute shabby chic! Exacty how I want my dream bedroom to look. She also reccomends beauty product, does great OOTD posts and some cheeky calorific recepies!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Volume Dusts : No no no...

I am always looking for ways to give my soft, flat hair more oomph, so when I received the OSIS Dust It Mattifying Powder in a beauty box, I thought I'd give it a whirl. This powder claims to give volume and texture to even the limpest of hair with a matte finish. This was horrible! The power comes out so so so fine and whatever way I used it, it just made my hair feel awful, like I had glue in my hair! It did give volume definitely, because it stuck my hair together and trying to brush through it was a complete night mare! 

I thought it might just be this particular brand and formula, so bought the Tigi Bed Head Candy Fixations Sugar Dust and had exactly the same problem. I really couldn't make it work, and it took some washing out too! 

It could be that it just doesn't work with my fine, soft hair type, but I definitely wont be reaching for these again any time soon. I really think I'm destined to have flat hair forever >.< .

Autumn / Winter Nails : Matte by Barry M

Recently I have been very impressed with Barry M's nail polish offerings, with this years release of the Hi Shine Gelly Nail polishes. These were absolutely amazing and were on my nails throughout most of the summer, but now we are well and truly nose diving into the winter months, Barry M's newest edition to the nail polish family will be gracing my nails : their matte collection. 

Their collection comes in a range of 5 shades, Blacks, beige's, browns and reds. I opted for the Black and Red shade in the collection and was not disappointed!

These apply to the nails with extreme ease, and after about 2 coats you have an evenly covered smooth nail, which drys fairly quickly. You can see during the drying process the paint changing from shiny to matte, and the final effect really is amazing. I love the matte nail trend - I know its a love or hate situation for alot of people, but I would recommend this range just to try it out. The colour's are gorgeous, and for £3.99, you really cant go wrong!

If like me, you always have your hands in the sink doing the washing up, the matte effect can rub off after a couple of days, bringing out a slight shine on the underneath polish, but to be fair, this is about the normal amount of wear I get from a nail polish before chipping, so i was very pleased! 

Are there any other nail polish ranges you would recommend? I don't like anything too gritty like the recent 'concrete' effect polishes that have been out, so I wouldn't try anything like that!

Winter Lip Saviour! Dr Lipps Nipple Balm for Lips

Listen guys.... I'm really sorry I've not posted in a while (In just over a month! WOW!) - life and work has gotten in the way of me reaching for my laptop! But i promise, ill get more organised and get back to posting at least once a week! As you know if you've read my last post, I've also signed up to Birchbox, so ill be doing a review of each box month by month! I've also got some plans for Christmas themed posts - any ideas of you would like to see are welcome! I'd love for you guys to get involved in my posts - if you want to do a guest post just contact me and id be happy to do one for you too! 

But enough of the apologies, time for a review!

Dr Lipps Nipple Balm for Lips : RRP £11.50

I received this cute 3ml sample with a beauty box a couple of months ago and it was a product I had heard about on a number of the blogs I read. It claims to be a multi purpose balm, originally used for breast feeding mums because the balm is hypoallergenic and super nourishing. It is still used for this, as well as on dry cuticles, dry skin, split ends, eczema, you name it, it does it!

The thing I noticed the most when using this is how hard I had to push to get even a tiny bit of product out of the bottle - its super thick so really did need some squeezing. Not that this was a bad thing at all, because it is so super thick, you only need the tiniest amount to cover your lips. Its not sticky, not greasy, but glossy and really will stay put on your lips until it completely sinks in. I do understand why it would be used on other parts of the body for skin issues, but I don't think id use it for anything other than my lips - just because of the amount of shine the product gives. 

Winter is always a nightmare time for me and my lips, and this has really helped with moisturisng them. I would definitely recommend this for maintenance over the winter months. This sample is nearly finished, so ill be purchasing the full size as soon as I run out!

What are your winter saviors? 

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