Friday, 30 August 2013

25 Facts About Me

Hey Ladies,
I thought i'd do a little getting to know me session and post a cheeky piece all about ME!
This is me!
Bonus Fact: I don't have a fringe anymore but I like my hair this shade!
1. Anchorman is my all time favourite film: I don't need to explain myself it just is! The VC in my title stands for Veronica Corningstone a character of the film, I cannot wait for the sequel to come out in December.

2. When I have had an alcoholic beverage I believe I am Jay Z: I love rap music so the collaboration of Jay Z and Kanye in N***s in Paris was sheer perfection and probably my most played song since its release. I always request it on a night out and for those three or so minutes I am the embodiment of Jay Z and rap along to my hearts content.

3. I am very sarcastic: I think sarcasm is a very ingrained within the British psyche and many people don't really get my sarcasm, being raised by my dad with my brothers and surrounded by men I think it shaped my sense of humour and so am very sarcastic in that sense and it is always my defence mechanism which drives my boyfriend insane.

4. Despite writing a beauty blog I don't wear much makeup: Day to day I am incredibly lazy with my makeup application and never wear eyeshadow or liner, on very rare occasions I will wear some lipstick but I usually stick to; foundation, concealer, powder, mascara, eyebrow pencil and bronzer. I prefer ten minutes extra in bed.

5. I am VERY clumsy: So far in my life I have broken eight bones; both bones in my arm twice, both my little fingers, my ankle and my nose. I often trip over my own pyjama bottoms and am forever going flying, I should be made to wear a hard hat at all times.

6. My favourite time of the day is when I remove my makeup: There's something so relaxing about washing your face in lovely hot water after a long day with your makeup on.

7. I have a major fear of moths / birds / anything flappy: I don't really know why; they just freak me out.

8. I love Star Trek/Stargate/X-Files: I really don't need to defend myself here but I'm a total sci fi geek they're just programmes I always watched with my brothers so I didn't have a choice but to like them and now I really enjoy them. Don't judge.

9. I studied Accounting and Finance for my degree: I was always good with numbers at school so it was a logical field to study, however if someone told me after 4 years of utter misery studying at a very disorganised university you're not a qualified accountant and have to study whilst working afterwards I probably wouldn't have bothered.

10. I don't have the ability to bite into apples, strawberries and cold sandwiches: All very random things and I don't know why I can't it's not because I've got sensitive teeth; it just makes me cringe and I can't do it.

11. I hate wearing heels: They hurt and most require constant concentration so not to go arse over tit; quite frankly I'd prefer a pair of converse any day of the week.

12. I wish Mason Disik was my child: I generally don't like children but the moment I saw Mason on Keeping up With The Kardashians I wanted to actually kidnap him; he's just TOO cute and every time he speaks I just want to steal him!

13. Watermelon is my most favourite food to eat: I could seriously chow down on the stuff until it came out my ears, it's so refreshing!

14. I am very 'unhip' with my music taste: I don't listen to any 'current' music apart from Jay-z/Beyonce, I actually work within the music and entertainment industry and when band names/singers are being dealt with I have to google most of them, I even rang up a company about Chase and Status and as they were down on my system as 'Chase Status' and I just said 'It's regarding Chase Status'; I hadn't a clue!

15. I don't like dogs I LOVE DOGS: If I don't see a dog for a while I start to get very sad, I'm not a fan of cats because they always jump out at me and frighten me as they're so quiet whereas dogs are in your face bundles of love who just want to love you and for you to love them. There is nothing better than coming home and being greeted by a dog who is so happy to see you they dart round the house in excitement. I miss my dog every day even after two years of him dying and people who don't have dogs really don't get how much their loss affects you, it's the same as losing a good friend especially when you have them for 15 years like I did.

16. No one can make me laugh more than my older brother Paul: He just has a nack for making me hurt from laughing he knows exactly how to get me, I once had a mouthful of hot chocolate and he made me spit it out laughing ... onto a white wall.

17. The only TV I watch is Football and The Great British Bake Off: Football is again due to being raised with boys and TGBBO is just TV magic, I love baking and last year Brendan stole my heart so I'm happy it's back on for a new series.

18: I am a workaholic: I don't seem to have the ability to sit and watch TV/Film without doing something else at the same time which is productive; whether it's tidying/organising, blogging or actual work. I have to always be doing something.

19. When I laugh I often snort and always cry: It is the most annoying thing when you can't stop laughing so much so that you cry, so many times at work I've got the giggles and most of my makeup runs off my face so I look a right state. Highly annoying.

20. I have never seen the films Dirty Dancing, Ghost, any Harry Potters, any Twilights: The idea of a 20 odd year old 'dirtily dancing' with a 16 year old creeps me out as does a pervy ghost and as for a load of kids with magic wands and horny vampire teenagers doesn't appeal to me.

21. I am more than happy in my own company: It never occurred to me until my last job that going shopping on your own/eating lunch on your own/having a coffee on your own was a big deal for some people, although I love my friends I am happy to do all those things by my lonesome and I love having peaceful nights doing what I want to do.

22. I cry at pretty much all Disney Pixar Films: They just always seem to get me, one of my first dates with my partner we went to see Up at the cinema and within 10 minutes of the film we were both in floods of tears, he's just as bad as me.

23. I have only ever been to once concert which was Take That: I went when I was about 10 maybe and my love for Robbie Williams knew no end (I didn't let my cousin fancy him she had to fancy Mark Owen!) and a week before I was due to see them he left the band. I cried. I was devistated and didn't want to go but my mum made me and I sulked all the way through it with my arms crossed.

24. My pet peeve is people who are impolite: Manners cost nothing and we all know manners maketh man, I truly believe this; if you haven't heard someone don't say 'what' say 'pardon', always hold a door open for the person behind you and always say your please/thank you/excuse me etc It takes zero effort but shows respect for the people around you.

25. My Starbucks order is Peppermint Mocha/ Peppermint Mocha Frappachino: It tastes like an After 8. Enough said.

So there's some facts about me, now what random things can you tell me about yourselves?

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

REVIEW: REN ClearCalm 3 Clarifying Clay Cleanser

Hey Ladies,
If you managed to read the title of this post without being tongue twisted I applause you because it usually takes me a couple of tries to get right.
REN ClearCalm 3 Clarifying Clay Cleanser
'REN ClearCalm3 Clarifying Clay Cleanser is a purifying, antibacterial cleanser formulated to combat and help prevent breakouts and blemishes. Promoting healthier looking skin, its a must-have daily helper for those who struggle with problematic skin.'

I have wanted to try this for the longest time but always stopped myself from purchasing because lets face it like I need another cleanser, however faced with a 20% discount code from LookFantastic it was an inevitable purchase.

I think this is a fantastic cleanser for people who suffer from oily skin which is prone to blemishes, its very soothing to the skin and works tremendously to clear up any break outs. I fit it into my daily routine after I remove my makeup at night, there is a slight chamomile scent to the product so it feels so calming for the soul at the end of a busy day and it is encouraged to massage into the skin for a couple of minutes which I really enjoy. Initially this did break me out due to it bringing everything to the surface of my skin that was lurking beneath so don't be alarmed if this happens to you, stick with it and the blemishes will clear up and then you will notice they seem to stay away which is very impressive.

Ingredients wise as with all REN products it contains very effective ingredients derived from plants and minerals; French clay absorbs oil and purifies the skin, Salicin derived from willow bark exfoliates and provides an anti-bacterial agent to the skin and Manuka extract helps to soothe the skin.

Although marketed to blemish prone skin I really believe all skin types can benefit from using this product; if you have more normal to dry skin this would act as a lovely treatment once a week to ensure your skin stays free of any congestion or spots.

I have to also say this is amazing value for a very effective cleanser, for £18.00 rrp you get 150mls of product, that my friends is known as a crap tonne of cleanser for your dolla'. REN is available from LookFantastic (Link).

Again yet to be disappointed by a REN product, what are your favourites?

Sunday, 25 August 2013

Nails of The Week - Nails inc Gel Effect Polish in St James

Hey Ladies,
Red nail polish is a shade I rarely wear, it's just a bit too 'normal' for me; give me a bright and wacky shade any day of the week and i'll sport it, a red not so much. When I was given St James by Nails inc in their new Gel Effect formula at the Northern Mid-Summer event hosted by AllSole, LookFantastic and MyBag I think I was more drawn to the formula than the actual shade.
Nails inc Gel Effect Polish in St James*

'Gel polish provides a high shine, super glossy finish without the need for a UV lamp or soak off. Gel effect polish contains the same plumping technology as a salon Gel manicure to provide a flawless, high gloss manicure. You will be able to create an ultra glossy, immaculate finish at home with ease.

The application of the polish is wonderful, the brush is nice and wide and the formula is super pigmented so you could get away with one coat. I love the actual bottle, If you don't already know i'm having some current OCD issues with organisation (if you don't follow my instagram you should!) so the rectangular bottles with corresponding coloured caps will line up a treat (how sad!) Wear wise i've had it on a solid week and it's held up very nicely even with me building a mammoth set of drawers and none stop sorting which is impressive. 

If you read my post on the Barry M gel polish (link) I was quite sceptical about gel polish formulas, they claim to be highly glossy but I would still always wear a top coat over them and it is advised by Nails inc to apply one. So my point is what is the point of the gel formula? 

Overall it is a nice nail polish, shade wise it is a pillar box red but there is a slight shimmer to it which makes it slighter more interesting than a flat red. I managed to wear this a week straight without getting bored and even applied it on my toes, it kind of makes me feel like a grown up. You can purchase from LookFantastic (Link) and I think they've launched wherever Nails inc is sold.

Saturday, 24 August 2013

REVIEW: MAC Lady Danger Lipstick

Hello Ladies,
Yes my quest for a lipstick collection consisting of 100 orangey red shades is still going strong, one shade which was always on my radar was Lady Danger by MAC. (if the title didn't give it away)
MAC Lady Danger Lipstick
This is described as a 'Vivid bright coral-red' by MAC, however on me it is a slightly orangey red. It is a Matte formula so very long lasting and this shade isn't at all drying (apparently some are extremely drying RiRi Woo being one) 

I would personally say this would be a great lipstick to wear all day, it has decent staying power and if you eat and drink it is very easy to touch up without it looking cakey which can happen with liquid lipsticks if you aren't careful. 

I love wearing a bright lip to the office as people automatically think you've made an effort when all you've actually done is spent a minute applying extra lipstick. Fools them all! Next on my list is Morange and Neon Orange from MAC, what are your favourite lipsticks at the moment?

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

REVIEW: Sebastian Professional Penetraitt Shampoo & Conditioner

Hey Ladies,
After intensifying my ombré hair (read: bleached my hair) my frazzled ends were in desperate need for some TLC. I have heard some great things about the Sebastian Professional Penetraitt range so was rather keen to try the shampoo and conditioner duo.
Sebastian Penetraitt Shampoo & Conditioner *
'Sebastian Professional Penetraitt Conditioner is essential care for your damaged hair, to strengthen any look, any time while removing and guarding it from stress caused from past chemical treatments and heat damage.'

I usually measure the effectiveness of a strengthening and repairing hair care range by the shampoo, shampoo is obviously designed to cleanse the hair and most shampoos really strip the hair at the same time. When a brand claims to repair and strengthen the hair if the shampoo dries your hair out you may as well not use it and find a different brand that doesn't, thankfully this shampoo is very gentle to your hair and if you skip conditioner (something I do quite a lot) your hair is still manageable and you can de-knott it without pulling half your hair out ready for blow drying.

The range comes into its own with the conditioner; it is fantastic. Smells lovely (completely different from the shampoo which is weird as most products within the same range smell the same) and it is almost like a hair mask, very thick and rich in consistency. I usually wash my hair and leave the conditioner on for a couple of minutes in the shower and as soon as you rinse you hair feels like new. It is softer, smoother, frizz free and feels like you've not damaged your hair in the first place.

As you can tell I definitely recommend this duo, they are available individually rrp £12.50 for the shampoo (Link), £14.50 for the Conditioner (Link) or as part of a set for £22.10 (Link). For the damaged hair sisters out there this is a saviour, all I can say is I cannot wait to buy the Penetraitt conditioning mask!

What are your hair products that save the day when you've fried your hair??

Sunday, 18 August 2013

Nails of the Week: ibd Just Gel in Hot Springs

Hey Ladies,
You all know my love for the mint green polishes so needing a gel shade in a similar hue was a must.
ibd Just Gel Polish - Hot Springs
I love this shade, it does require about 5 coats to get this opaque but it's worth it as it's such a lovely cool mint shade. As it's such a light shade it doesn't tend to clash with anything you're wearing so having it on your nails for two weeks isn't a struggle.

What are your favourite mint nail polishes? Oh a little side note I am involved with a 'Bloggers Challenge' with Filofax which involved taking one of their original Filofax's and creating an outfit from a chosen decade. I chose the neon orange Filofax and my outfit was based on the 80's, think shoulder pads, perm and leopard print! If you could vote for me (link) I would totally love you forever!!

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

REVIEW: Balance Me Radiance Face Mask

Hey Ladies,
Me and my yellow skin; that would totally be my autobiography title if anyone cared enough to read it (my Nan being the only one), having this clear deformity (very much sarcasm) means my skin is naturally very dull, dull dull dull. This is known on twitter as HASH TAG first world problems, thankfully there are a few products that can brighten my complexion and make me look like I am not going into liver failure.
balance Me Radiance Face Mask*
'Cleanse, exfoliate and brighten your skin with Balance Me Radiance Face Mask, a unique, purifying blend of radiance enhancing natural ingredients. Ground walnut shells gently buff away dead skin cells and encourage cell renewal, skin is left calm, soft and thoroughly cleansed.' 

You can use this product as an everyday face wash or an intense treatment, personally I prefer it as a mask as the results are amazing, it immediately gives your complexion a kick in the rear and brings it back to life. Your skin is left smooth as silk, brighter than the sun (well perhaps not quite) and if you have any break outs they look so much calmer and soothed.

These days I am not one for manual exfoliation so the kernels in this product were a bit of a transition but they are very gentle and as long as you don't massage too much they shouldn't cause any irritation to the skin. The kernels together with the fruit acid complex contained in the formula are the key to how soft and smooth your skin feels post treatment, one of the main ingredients is Kaolin clay which means it is great for oily/congested skin and calamine oil combined with lavender help to soothe the complexion.

This is such a wonderful quick fix, the benefits to your skin are immediately noticeable and so it is a great product to have in your skincare drawer (you haven't got a drawer dedicated to skin care? sort it out immediately or be prepared to be booted off this blog). Plus 98% of natural origin and £18.00 for 75mls (here) this is a total winner for me!

So far I haven't been disappointed by any product that I've tried from BalanceMe, have you tried anything from the range?

Sunday, 11 August 2013

OFFER: Hydraluron for £16.65

Hey Ladies,

I'm going to hold my hands up now & say that I have never tried Hydraluron, as a Beauty Blogger who loves skincare this is like admitting a I don't wash my face (which I ALWAYS do btw). Whenever I go to Boots I always pick it up but can never seem to justify spending the best part of £30 on something that looks so plain and boring and totally functional (shallow & fickle are my middle names, what can I say? I'm a magpie and enjoy nice packaging) 

Whilst doing a little lunch time browsing in Boots today I noticed a little line through the price and a lovely smaller number underneath - £16.66. 

I finally have my boring very plain tube & I can't wait to slap it on tonight & experience the miracle of Hydraluron. I thought I would let you know about the deal, you can purchase at Boots Stores or online (Link) plus all the other Indeed Labs products are 1/3 off!! 

Will you be picking up a tube? Have you tried Hydraluron before? I will do a review when I've put it through it's paces. 

Nails of the Week: Barry M Gelly Greenberry

Hey Ladies,
With the weather going back to the usual British Summer ie raining and pouring I thought a bit of brightness could be at least achieved on my finger tips.

This is my first Barry M Gelly formula and like everyone else it would seem in the blogging world I am impressed. The formula is quite thick, applies like a dream and quickly dries, I always apply a top coat but it is potentially skippable if you're in a rush as they're so shiny. Shade wise it is a beaut, it is practically a neon mint green; very very unique.

Wear wise they last a good 5 days with no chips, the whole gel nail polish is just a marketing gimmick if you ask me as i'm yet to find one that doesn't chip for 2 weeks like an actual gel manicure, they tend just to be slightly thicker formulas with a very shiny finish.

For £3.99 you can't really be irked by the marketing ploy, Barry M is nicely accessible at Boots stores, online (here) or Superdrug.

I am finding it hard not to purchase all the shades, I just need to keep telling myself 200 bottles of nail polish is all a girl needs. Please tell me I'm delusional and can buy more?? Which shades do you recommend from the range and tell me do they last as well as a Shellac manicure on you?

Thursday, 8 August 2013

REVIEW: OCC Lip Tar in Psycho

Hey Ladies,

Needless to say my love for orangy reds has not dissipated, in fact it knows no bounds and is growing larger by the day (Mac Morange and Neon Orange i'm coming for you!)
'Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tars Combine the ease of application of a gloss. Goes on slick and moist, and dries down to a satin finish. Ultra-saturated in color, lip tar contains an unprecedented amount of pigment - a little goes a very, very long way! An intense yet featherweight layer of colour that never looks or feels heavy.'
Psycho is the brightest orangy red, definitely more on the orangy side, a stunning summer shade which is practically neon.

Pigmented these are. Fantastically so, you seriously need the tiniest amount to achieve the boldest lip colour of your life.

If you are new to bold lipsticks or liquid lipsticks I would choose an easier formula (the Stila All Day ones would be ideal), you need a lip brush (one is provided with the lip tar) and a lip pencil, don't apply whilst tipsy and don't apply too much otherwise they can get very very messy.

Having warned you of the potential downfalls, if you have a steady hand and alcohol free mind these will be your best friends, they dry to a satin finish and so are very flattering on the lips if they are a little dry, the lasting power is excellent although not as good as a matte liquid lipstick but the joy of Lip Tars is that you can reapply them without them looking cakey or dry. They do leave a slight stain on the lip once they're removed so you could use them as a stain if you wanted a more subtle look by simply patting the formula into the lips.

Colour range is as wide as they come, if you fancy a bright blue lipstick you're guaranteed to find one in a lip tar, plus you can mix colours together to create your very own custom colour.

Price wise I think they're one of the best value lip products you can buy, for example Stila All Day Liquid Lipsticks are £15 for 3ml so £5/ml, lip tars are £11 for 10mls including a brush & pouch so £1.1/ml. Fantastic value. You can get them from Selfridges (here).

Whenever I wear a Lip Tar on a night out I am constantly asked what lipstick I have on, they're bold, unique and definitely in your face. All the elements for my ideal lipsticks! Have you ever tried a lip tar?

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

REVIEW: Ren Clarifying Toner

Hey Ladies,

Manual exfoliation is quickly becoming a tool of the past, it can irritate certain skin types more than any benefit it may have to the skin. Skincare has come on in leaps and bounds with acidic exfoliation, and whilst the word toner might be completely old school the new generation of toners are as are as modern as they come.
'A refreshing exfoliating toning lotion that unclogs pores and sloughs off dead skin leaving the complexion looking clear, smooth and even toned. Reduces the appearance of pore size and oiliness while its antimicrobial action minimizes future breakouts.'
Refreshing is the perfect word I would use to describe this toner which makes it perfect for mornings, the smell isn't my favourite but perfectly tolerable and dissipates fairly quickly.

If you are used to exfoliating toners such as Alpha H Liquid Gold this will feel like nothing on your skin as it is so mild, initially having been used to the stronger acidic based exfoliators I thought it was pretty useless for me but I found as a morning toner it works a treat for controlling oil during the day.

Ingredients wise the toner is free from most skin nasties, there's a little alcohol but it is at the bottom of the list, active ingredients are glycolic, lactic and citric acids to exfoliate, decongest and remove the dead skin cells, willow bark extract which is another exfoliator and has antibacterial properties to purify congested skin and finally May blossom extract which helps to reduce sebum production.

If you're more on the sensitive side this will be a great exfoliating toner to start off with as it is extremely gentle but really does make a difference to the overall health of your skin, when used regularly your skin will be softer, clearer, you will have less break outs and it really does control the oil on your face during the day.

Price wise it's £18.00 for 150ml so very good value, plus on sites like LookFantastic (here) there's always a discount code around payday. (Currently PAYDAY10)

Have you tried any exfoliating toners? Which are your favourites?

Sunday, 4 August 2013

NOTW: ibd Just Gel Polish - Seashell Pink

Hey Ladies,

Well this week I've realised how much I've neglected my blog in recent months, once I had a thorough talking to by myself I vowed to be a better beauty blogger. Not only have I planned out a whole month of blogging with a fancy calendar (Instagram pic) but I've decided to have a scheduled posting plan; Sundays are going to be Nail of the week, Tuesdays are going to be either skincare or haircare reviews and Thursdays will be makeup reviews. You my friends are some lucky buggers!

It's Sunday which of course means Nail of The Week, as I have gel manicures every two weeks expect to see some gel polishes, online swatches are pretty poor so hopefully they'll be useful to some people.
After a very bored afternoon I did something I never do, I picked off my gel which damaged my nails a little bit and so I took the very brave decision to trim my nails down. (I'm having flashbacks).

Whenever my nails are at their shortest I love nude colours, this from ibd Just Gel is the perfect milky pink, it takes quite a few coats to get to this level of opaqueness but once  get there your nails look polished and healthy and of course the shade goes with everything so you don't have to worry about clashing.

idb Just Gel are probably my favourite gel polishes, they come in some amazing shades both classic and trendy and last two weeks easily, as I do my own gel manicures it's essential for polishes to last the full two weeks as it takes so bloody long for them to be soaked off so it's not worth doing once a week.

Are you a gel manicure fan or do you prefer to stick with traditional polish?