Wednesday, 28 March 2012

NOTD: Bourjois & Sally Hansen Nail Strip How To!

Hey Ladies,

I searched high & low for these Sally Hansen Nail Strips as they're very hard to come by in the UK, I managed to find them Here after a lot of searching, they arrived super quick so I really recommend the site! The Bourjois polish is from their new Spring 2012 collection, I've got a few of the products so no doubt you'll see them soon, I immediately knew I'd be pairing the coral shade with the nail strips as the weather is currently amazing in the UK I am totally in the Summer mood & nothing says Summer like coral nails!


May Need Enlarging!

The Bourjois polish is described as Pink but is definitely a pinky coral it doesn't actually have a name just #25 (very memorable), it is absolutely a gorgeous colour, it has the tiniest pink micro shimmer running through it but once its on your nails you can't see it at all, I needed three coats to get the shade completely opaque because I found the slanted brush a little hard to apply the polish with (perhaps i'm thick) I much prefer their other rounded brushes! The claim to be up to 10 days wear & 3 days minimum is just a waiting game for me now, nail polish chips on me quite easily so I never expect too much!

My Thoughts On Sally Hansen Nail Strips

I found them really easy to apply once I got the hang of it, they are completely different from nail wraps as they are actual nail polish so not thick at all, I feel nail wraps coming away from the free edge immediately but these feel really secure especially with the added top coat, I have heard they last really long on the nails so another waiting game there! Unfortunately they are a pain to get hold of in the UK & I haven't really found a brand that carries anything other than nail wraps to recommend, another downside is that they are expensive and you only get 16 strips in a pack, how random is that?? At least put 20 in so you can get two full manicures in also they do dry out so if you have any left over make sure you reseal the packet with tape! I have to say so far I totally recommend them, I bought some sparkly ones too & I definitely want the flower pattern next!

Has anyone tried any nail strips they can recommend that are easy to get in this country? or do you know when Sally Hansen are finally releasing them in the UK?

Monday, 26 March 2012

REVIEW: Nicki Minaj Viva Glam Lipstick

Hey Ladies,
When I saw that there was a new Viva Glam from Mac in collaboration with Nicki Minaj I knew immediately it would be bright pink & I'd have to own it, I'm not a Nicki Minaj fan at all but I always like to support the Viva Glam as its great to do something for charity & receive a nice lipstick for your troubles as all the profits go to the Mac Aids fund.

It is a bright bubblegum pink more yellow than blue toned, I have to say I actually can't stand it, Tali at The Gloss Gloss said 'there's something not quite right about it' and I totally agree, the texture is really unflattering if you have any dryness on your lips & applies very unevenly over the lips if they're in perfect condition. I will say the colour looks different on everyone, it looks like a bright pink on me & on others looks a coral, from the bullet it looks coral so I was really disappointed it didn't transfer to my lips with the same shade.

I also feel that it just doesn't suit me & I don't like the texture, all together disappointed with this offering from MAC, as for Niki Minaj so far the cosmetics she's been involved with haven't really one much for me, the OPI collection was rather diappointing apart from the shade Fly. Stick to Rapping Love!!

Anyone else tried it & found the same? or how have you made it work?

Friday, 23 March 2012

Revlon Colorburst Lip Butters

Hey Ladies,

So the day has finally arrived, all the anticipation for this product was ridiculous most of which I am guilty of but the Revlon Lip Butters are finally in the UK & I've got my hands on two, now it has been tough going in order to achieve this, I waited until they were online only to be told it was a preview, I was then told they were in stores so I go to about 4 different Boots & they were no where to be seen, I then ordered them online to collect in store which took over a week, then got quizzed to death when I picked them up! But they're in my hands now & that's the main thing!

Because I hadn't seen them in person I just went for the safest options which were Cupcake & Créme Brülee, Cupcake is a light pink quite blue toned with pink and lilac shimmer and Créme Brülee is a caramel nude shade with a golden shimmer, I would have preferred no shimmer but it's my understanding these are the least shimmery shades available.

The texture is nice and smooth and of course moisturising which is the whole point of the Lip Butters, as you can see they are incredibly sheer, L'Oreal have come out with their competing product which hasn't had nearly as much hype as these and are much more pigmented, for day to day lip balm this is as much pigmentation as I need, I don't like heavy lipstick during the day ands so I am happy, they're nice & sheer so you don't need a mirror to apply them. If you're looking for something a bit stronger the L'Oreal Rouge Caresse lipsticks will most likely be better for you, the shades I saw were quite similar to these lip butters but more pigmented.

So far so good with the Lip Butters for me, they're not too expensive which is good & come in quite a few shades so there'll be something for everyone & when they FINALLY are in my Boots I'll be checking out the other shades!

Have you managed to get your hands on them yet? If so what shade, what do you recommend?

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

REVIEW: Murad Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisture

Hey Ladies,

I have done some serious shaking up of my skin care recently so I thought I'd slowly review all the new products I've been using, I am going to film a series of skin care videos soon which will be showing you all my favourite skin care products as my routine changes all the time so there's no point showing you all a set routine.

Today we're starting with Dydro-Dynamic Moisture by Murad;

"Über-rich, intensely hydrating, all purpose cream provides instant and long term relief from dryness."

This is the most intense moisturiser Murad offers in their skin care line and is perfect for sensitive drier skin types as it really does make your skin super soft and contains no fragrance, this stuff seriously doesn't have a smell which automatically makes it a brilliant product for me as added fragrances give me major spots. It contains collagen support complex which is supposed to boost skins resilience and help plump dehydrated skin and Retinyl Palmitate which refines the skin and improves the texture, any dehydration my skin had is now long gone & it is more soft and smooth than it has been in a long time so major thumbs up for that.

To say it's such an intense moisturiser it isn't greasy in the slightest, my skin absorbs it immediately and so I use this as a day cream as well as night, it doesn't contain any SPF so in the day you will need another product that contains an SPF.

It retails for £64.00 which is pricey for Murad but the Anti-Ageing products have some serious science behind them so worth the investment if that is your major skin care concerns, I will also point out you only need a small amount, I've been using mine for two months night and day & used about a quarter.

I would definitely recommend this for people who have dry or dehydrated skin and worried about ageing skin, I am 25 but am definitely of the mindset that I want to prevent wrinkles rather than try and reverse them later on, I seriously have a long list from the anti-ageing line on my shopping list, the Resurfacing Peel and Night Reform Serum look right up my street and I've always been curious about the Murad supplements. Have any of you tried them & seen results? 

Monday, 19 March 2012

FREE Mini Facials At The REN Pop Up Skin Care Bar in Selfridges

Hey Ladies,

I don't often post about these sort of things but for you London ladies I thought it would be useful to know that from the 22nd March til the 31st March REN Skincare have a 'pop' up bar in Selfridges and are offering complimentary mini facials in order to celebrate the launch of their Bio-Retinoid Anti-Ageing Concentrate.

There's a choice of three mini facials to choose from (below), you get to have a glass of champagne whilst the the therapist talks you through her recommendations & walk away with a goody bag with samples.

The perfect power mix.
Keep Young and Beautiful Serum infused with Bio Retinoid Anti-Ageing Concentrate.
 Packed with Vitamin A and Sirtuin to make you look and feel 10 years younger.

A zesty concoction of
Micro Polish Cleanser followed by Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask,
 topped off with a generous measure of Radiance Perfecting Serum
(an acquired taste – not for sensitive skin)

A long, cooling cocktail of
Hydracalm Cleansing Milk, shaken with Hydracalm Youth Defence Serum 
and finished with splash of Hydracalm Global Protection Day Cream.
 Perfect for stressed out, sensitive skin. 

To take advantage of this offer just call 08708 377 377 to book or pop by the counter.

I seriously wish I lived in London sometimes as it's a great offer from REN & I've always wanted to try their skincare line, their Night Repair Serum is like my heaven in a bottle! 

I hope some of you take advantage of the offer & report back!

Sunday, 18 March 2012

REVIEW: Topshop Makeup Liner Pen

Hey Ladies,

I have the fussiest eyes when it comes to eyeliner, the thing is it just doesn't stay put, I have tried most high street & high end liners & most of them fail on me, the problem is they transfer to my top lid & they smudge like no ones business, and so Pen type liners are usually a no go.
Until Topshop came along & created their makeup line, I bought this liner a good 18 months ago & although I don't use it everyday it is still going strong, I think this is a bit impressive for a pen liner which are notorious for drying out. I even bought an ELF one once that arrived dried up but it was a pound so I didn't really care.

This a total product rave because it is the simplest eyeliner to use if you're just starting out wearing eyeliner as it gives you the sharpest line and really easy to correct if you go a little astray. It lasts on my eyes all day without a problem & is a really dark black shade plus doesn't dry out quickly! All for under £7 what more could you ask!

As far as I know Topshop just brought out another version of this liner pen but with a finer tip if you want a more precise application as this is a little chunky for some but I enjoy thick liner so I'm happy with it.

Have any of you tried this liner? Any of the Topshop makeup you recommend?

Friday, 16 March 2012

NOTD: OPI Done Out In Deco

Hey Ladies,

After Ombré'ing my nails lilac & using this polish I had to do a full manicure with OPI Done Out In Deco as it's one of my all time favourite nail polishes, plus perfect for this time of the year with its pastel hue but a little edgier due to the grey undertones.

OPI - Done Out In Deco

Such a flattering shade i'd say it would suit every skin tone, this polish has a great formulation which is fairly chip resistant and opaque in two coats, my bottle also has the pro wide brush which is the best invention to nail polish since … erm the bottle.

What are your favourite spring time shades of nail polish? I may pop to Boots tomorrow so what are your favourite high street polish shades?

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

The Harrods Glossybox and Giveaway

Hey Ladies,

I haven't really posted on my blog my thoughts on the beauty box phenomenon mainly because I think everyone else covers it on a monthly basis thoroughly enough & I don't want to bore you. I initially filmed a video which I still stand by but having been sent the Glossybox every month without posting on it I have to admit my opinion has slightly changed on the matter mainly because I am yet to be really disappointed by a box which was my main critique in the video.

This month sees Glossybox collaborate with Harrods which I was extremely excited about when it was announced, I was so excited I subscribed to the service in order to do a giveaway so that one of my readers could have one as well (details at the bottom of the post)

Top Left to Right
Erno Laszlo The Hollywood Collection, Ojon Damage Reverse Hair Serum, Fendi Fan Di Fendi
Bottom Left to Right
Clarins Extra Firming Body Cream, Burberry Beauty Lip Cover in Rosewood
My Thoughts on The Harrods Box
I personally think my box speaks for itself ... it's amazing! I haven't tried Ojon products before so I seriously cannot wait to slap this on my hair and love the Burberry lipstick the shade is pretty just a flattering dark pink nothing I would have bought myself but I like the finish it gives to my lips. The perfume is a decent sample which I think is more citrusy than floral which is the description but it's a nice light fragrance perfect for this time of the year, Clarins body care is always a welcome sight as I have loads of samples at my boyfriends as they always deliver so great for travelling although I hate the perfume Clarins use in their products. Finally the Erno Laszlo facial creams are nothing I've tried before but skin care really is a fetish of mine so I will give them a try but there's not enough to form a proper opinion on the range.

I personally feel people have come to expect full size products every month which is partly due to the Beauty Box producers providing them in many boxes so there's been some backlash at time from customers, to be honest it is a little unrealistic to expect full size product in the boxes as the whole concept behind the idea is they are sample boxes to try different brands you may not have tried before so the Harrods Glossybox is a true reflection on a successful sample box, decent sized samples of high end brands that you may have not heard of before or may have been put off by the price of the full sized product without trying it first!

For example the Burberry Lipstick, I have never tried anything from the Burberry Beauty line & although the shade isn't one I'd choose myself, I wouldn't have bought a full size one online as I have no idea the finish, the smell, taste etc now I have tried it I will happily purchase a full size one as the quality & finish is brilliant although the taste & smell isn't my favourite.

Well done Glossybox this month I say!

Now on to the giveaway all you need to do is be a subscriber & leave a comment of some sort with your twitter name or some way to contact you if you're the winner,  you will receive an unopened box (the one I purchased!) I've had to open the outer packaging to remove my billing & address details but I have no idea what is in the box & the items inside could be completely different to the ones above just in case you're thinking you got this one!!

Giveaway ends 31st March 2012

Good Luck & get entering!!

Friday, 9 March 2012

Lilac Ombré Nails

Hey Ladies,

Little Finger - Essie Neo Whimsical
Ring Finger - OPI Rumple's Wiggin'
Middle Finger - OPI Rumple's Wiggin' mixed with OPI Done Out in Deco
Index Finger - OPI Done Out In Deco
Thump - Illamasqua Velocity
I've already tried the Pink Ombré nails so I thought I'd give the Lilac shade range a go, I chose more grey lilacs rather than pink tones as I personally prefer them, I did mix one shade on the middle finger as I don't quite have a grey toned lilac in between the Rumple's Wiggin' and Done out In Deco shades.

Totally digging the Ombré nails, If I can't ever seem to get my hair to Ombré I can get my nails done so!

Have any of you attempted the Ombré nails??

Monday, 5 March 2012

Product of The Week: Real Techniques Blush Brush

Hey Ladies,

This weeks product of the week comes courtesy of Samantha Chapman of Pixiwoo & Real Techniques, I've been wanting to try these brushes pretty much since I heard about them & this week I finally purchased the blush brush from Boots.

Image borrowed from www.jfstyleandbeauty,com

I wanted this brush as my first purchase from the range as it's available individually so you can get a sense of the quality of the range without getting a set & mainly because it's a pointed face brush, kind of like a certain well known branded one which costs three times the price which I've wanted for ages but never could justify the price.

I have been using this for my bronzer the past few days & I think it is amazing, it is so soft & perfect for contouring the face, the point of the brush applies the product to your face with precision & the bristles around the tip blend it perfectly & effortlessly. I've not had one shed hair, it feels like a good quality brush & to say it's synthetic you'd have no idea as it performs & feels like natural hair but at a great price & is vegan friendly.

I really recommend this brush to everyone, I own so many brushes & this has quickly become one of my favourites I can't wait to try more from the range but I do wish they were all available individually as I want the buffing brush!

Having met Sam & Nic a couple of times at events I can say they are so nice, friendly & funny so whenever I see the brushes in Boots I get a very strong sense of pride in what they've achieved & so more than happy to spend my pennies & support them!! Have you purchased anything from the range? What do you recommend?

RRP £9.99 

Thursday, 1 March 2012

A Quorn Dinner Party

Hey Ladies,

Something a bit different today for you, I was asked to write a post on Quorn (as the title may suggest) and first let me start by saying I'm the most carnivorous person going, I could seriously give a T-Rex a run for its money but something that got me through living in halls at uni was Quorn so I was happy to do a post on the topic. Not only is it cheaper than meat generally its healthier too & when I was a student these were fairly important factors not only that the thought of eating real sausages freaked me out so Quorn sausage sandwiches cured many a hangover I can assure you.

Even though i'm no longer a student I still cook using Quorn, rather than a post drinking cure or budget friendly option I use it mainly these days when I have Vegetarian friends over for dinner.  I love cooking for people but I will admit to total meat ignorance ie it's in 90% of my meals & so if i'm having people round for dinner I really don't like to feed the meat eaters meat & give the vegetarian my best attempt at a 'tasty' salad so I prefer to use Quorn & make sure both parties leave my house suitably stuffed & also having friends round is such a communal thing & separating a group of people is a no no for me. 

One of my favourite recipes to cook with meat or Quorn is Stroganoff, it's probably my favourite meal if my aunt cooks it for me & such an easy one when you have company as it's quick, it's a one pan dish & seriously tasty, so I thought i'd share my recipe with you.

You Will Need:
Quorn Balls
A Good Glug of Wine
250mls Sour Cream
1 tbsp Mustard
150g Mushrooms chopped
1 medium onion diced
Salt & Ground Pepper

1. Pan fry the Quorn balls in 1tbsp of oil until golden brown, remove from the pan and put to one side.

2. Heat some oil & butter in a frying pan & cook the onion on a low heat until softened (don't be tempted to turn up the heat if they take a while, it'll just fry & that's not the taste we want)

3. Add the Quorn to the pan & increase the heat to medium & cook for a few more minutes.

4. Add the wine, just enough to make a little well in the bottom of the pan but not too much as you're wasting potential drink! Reduce on the heat by a third.

5. Add the mushrooms, sour cream, salt & mustard & cook for a further 10 minutes.

6. Once the cream has thickened, start to grind the black pepper into the sauce keep adding & tasting until it is peppery enough for you, personally I stand there for about 5 minutes adding pepper!

7. Serve with rice & lots of white wine!

Bish bash bosh as they say, if you're after a healthier version just substitute the sour cream for creme fraiche! There's loads of recipes on the Quorn Website and also on their Facebook page they're encouraging people to upload recipes & pictures of their Quorn creations so there'll be some tried & tested meals there!

So there's one of my favourite meals with a cheaper, healthier, more vegetarian friendly meat substitute! Have you ever tried Quorn & what did you make? If you're not a sausage fan I urge you to try theirs!!