Budget Beauty: Maxfactor Creamy Touch Miracle Blush

maxfactorcreamytouchblushHaving raved about the Maxfactor Creamy Touch Miracle Blush in Soft Pink I just knew I had to get my mitts on two of the other shades. I’m a bit of a cream blush nerd and you can check out my run down of the best summery cream blushes for the certain skin types HERE but here is a quick review of the two new shades to grace my collection.

03 Soft Copper

This is probably my favourite of the two new shades I picked up as I really think there’s something fairly unique about this colour. If MAC Gingerly blush came in cream form this would be it! It’s so natural on the skin and gives a very ‘true’ flush to the cheeks. I’ve used it when I’ve been pale and when I’ve fake tanned and I think it looks lovely on both skintones. I apply it using my fingers as it’s not too OTT on pigment that you have to be too careful. This has been a great go to shade for work as it’s super fast to apply and lasts nicely throughout the day!

09 Soft Murano

This pale raspberry colour is another very pretty shade, I did need to use my trusty Real Techniques Stippling Brush to apply this one as it’s very pigmented. I like this on a day when I’m wearing a tinted moisturiser, BB cream or a sheer foundation as it definitely gives you a ‘been out on a windy day’ look to the cheeks. It’s probably the only one out of this range that I actually like as a lip colour, applied with a little lip balm or 8 hour cream this is a nice trans-seasonal shade that doesn’t look over-done!

My only criticism is the awful packaging but for £6.99 you don’t have to be too precious with them. The only shade I haven’t picked up yet is 07 Soft Candy as I find there’s something daunting about a red cream blusher, I bet this looks stunning on women of colour but on my pale skin it’s not something I think will suit me. Let me know your favourite drugstore blusher, I’d love to add a few new ones to my wish list…

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Mini Haul/MAC Dupes: Kiko Cosmetics

kiko1A brand that I feel is super underrated is Kiko and I blumin’ love their products. They really did throw a massive spanner in my beauty works as in my home-town they’re only a door away from MAC meaning that I’ve had a chance on many occasions to directly compare very similar products. I picked three new additions to my collection today based on the fact I’d gone into MAC and wasn’t mightily impressed, I then tottered over to Kiko only to find similar products that were actually nicer in formula that their MAC look-a-like…

Kiko Beam of Light Highlighter in 02 Sand // Dupe: MAC Cream Colour Base in Shell

This is a stunner of a highlighter as not only is it a super flattery pale gold with the most amazing youth infusing dewy loveliness it’s the most creamy baked product I’ve come across in a very long time. Not only does it get a solid 10/10 in the shimmer department for cheekbones it also makes a really lovely eyeshadow and brow bone highlight. I know this is one my sister will love so I’ll definitely be picking her up one next time I head into a Kiko store as this is a great dupe for MAC’s Cream Colour Base in Shell only this is a powder version. They were also only £5 which is blumin’ crazily cheap for the amazing quality of thiskiko2 product!

Kiko Colour Veil Blush in 06 Mauve // Dupe: MAC Mineralize Blush in Warm Soul

So this is where the MAC dupe comes in, when browsing the isles of MAC for a new mineralise blush I was pretty underwhelmed. I’d seen many a blogger or vlogger talk about the wonders of these baked blushes but for some reason they just didn’t knock my socks off. I came close to parting with £21 for Warm Soul but ditched it and headed over to Kiko and BOY am I glad I did. This beautiful dupe almost knocked me over I was so amazed at the complete identicalness of 06 Mauve next to Warm Soul which I’d already swatched on my arm. It’s a beautiful warm rusty mauve which blends like a dream with a nice fluffy brush. I also find the Kiko shade much creamier and nicer in texture than the MAC one and again it was a snip at only £5!

kiko4Kiko Cream Crush Lasting Colour Eyeshadow in 06 Pearly Chocolate // Dupe: MAC Pro Longwear Paint Pot in Indianwood

Again in the same MAC trip I saw a Pro Longwear Paint Pot in Indianwood, this cream eyeshadow shade is a stunning copper chocolate with a flek of glitter running through. It’s one I’d had my eye on for a while however unfortunately my local MAC store didn’t have it in stock. I then headed over to Kiko and saw this identical shade in 06 Pearly Chocolate, I’m so please with the fact it has some working timkiko3e and stays wet for a while then dries down and does.not.budge! It makes a great base for a smoky brown eye or looks great alone for a grungy super easy and quick eye makeup look.

I’m super pleased with my purchases and would highly recommend them all! If you have any Kiko recommendations I’d really appreciate you letting me know in the comments!

Perfect Palette – Stila: Eyes Are The Window To The Soul

stilapalette2As I’m sure many of you have gathered I’m a massive fan of a neutral eyeshadow palette. It’s a bit of a problem and I have a rather large stack of them including ones from MAC, Collection, Urban Decay, Makeup Revolution etc. So it takes a pretty special one for me to justify adding to this groaning pile of browns and nudes. But when I came across this beauty I knew I just had to get it. As I’ve mentioned a fair few times, I love Stila cosmetics as I find their formulations beat even some of the super expensive brands out there but they’re not hideously overpriced ALSO their website seems to frequently have a sale going on or a blumin’ good discount code (I managed to get 20% off this one) and they offer free P&P which is always good!

Anyway, firstly this palette has the most beautiful embossed rose gold packaging that made me a little bit more than very excited, it also has a lovely big mirror so very handy for nights away. What really got me though was the lovely mix of colours inside. The colours range from the very shimmery to the super duper matte meaning you really can get a great range of looks. The colours included are (left to right)…

Light – a pretty pale matte cream shade, great for a brow bone highlight.

Individual – a nice warm matte pale brown which looks awesome in the crease.

Being – a dark matte brown, good for blending into the lash line for daytime definition.

Kitten – a classic Stila shade this is a super creamy, shimmery champagne that I know will be my most used shade.

Affection – this colour is so unique, it’s a warm copper with a lovely wet look metallic finish, sooo… beautiful!

Character – dark brown with chunkier glitter, this is probably one that I’ll wear into the winter months.

Thought – the goldest most gorgeous shimmery shade that looks stunning on stilapalettethe centre of the lid.

Heart – a warm matte taupe colour this is one I know I’ll use lots, very similar to Tease from the Naked 2 palette.

Peace – a warm mix of shimmery taupe and copper, so unusual and looks properly beautiful all over the lid on green/blue eyes.

Vitality – another shade I’ll end up wearing a tonne this is a silvery taupe shimmer shade that’ll look great day or night.

Substance – a greenish, grey-silver colour that again packs a punch on the wet-look metallic front.

Essence – a super matte black, used wet this works nicely as an eye-liner.

I would highly recommend this pallet as I really think you can create so many different looks from day or night, classic or quirky there really is something for everyone. It’s also worth me mentioning that the formula of both the mattes and the shimmers are really blendable and don’t require alot of work, they also lasted really nicely on me without a primer! Overall I think this is probably up there with one of my favourite beauty buys of the year and is definitely one I’d recommend. If you’d like to see a look using these shadows then please drop me a like or a comment?

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Budget Beauty: New Nudes!

essencenudeSince the dawn of time I’ve been a fan of nude lipstick and have frequently expressed my desire to find the perfect nude from the drugstore as for a long time MAC have really ruled the roost in my nude lipstick collection. When I came across these two beautiful shades from Essence (at Wilko) I knew I just had to share them. They’re not a light nude as they’re most definitely on the deeper ‘Kylie Jenner’ spectrum of a 90’s brownish nude that’s super flattering on a range of skin tones.

The two shades are part of the Essence I ❤ Nude collection and I picked up the shades 05 Cool Nude and 03 Come Naturally. Bizarrely enough 03 Come Naturally is cooler than 05 Cool Nude and airs on the side of brownish purple. I’ve been really enjoying it with a soft taupey eye look and lots of mascara!

05 Cool Nude is my favourite though, it’s almost like a reddish brown mixed with a mid-tone pink and is super easy to wear and makes a change from my all-time favourite Pink Truffle from Revlon. It looks great with bronzey skin and a gold and cranberry eye makeup look! It’s also a good dupe for MAC’s Faux or MAC’s Brave.

At only £2.30 these are amazing value for money and the packaging is nice and sleek too and for a super affordable lipstick they come embossed with the Essence ‘e’ which for me is a nice touch! Let me know your favourite drugstore nude lipsticks in the comments…

UPDATE: Please find below a couple of lip swatches that were requested by a lovely reader Beauty Noobie (excuse the PJ’s!) x

 

Face of the Day – Golden Glow

Golden GlowI’ve really fallen in love with this makeup look and I know it’s going to be one that I’ll turn to day and night for the duration of the summer. It relies heavily on subtle shimmer and caramel colours to enhance even the drabbest of skin tones!

Firstly I prepped the skin with a nice light moisturiser and then blended Illamasqua Skin Base in 7.5 with L’Oriel True Match Foundation in W8 into my skin using a blending brush. I then apply a small amount of the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer under the eyes and down the bridge of the nose and blend this with a small setting brush.

For the eyes I used the Australis Cream Metallix Eyeshadow in Pearl Jammin, I simply applied this with myGolden Glow eye ring finger and used a blending brush to make the edges look slightly more seamless. I then used the Soap and Glory double ended liner in Velevet Pink/Brownie. This I simply drew along the upper and lower lash line and smudged this with my blending brush to make things a little less stark, I then applied my ever faithful Maybelline Colossal mascara in Black.

On the cheek bones, forehead and jaw line I used the NARS Laguna bronzer with a flat top kabuki brush to keep things looking nice and sun-kissed. For blush I applied the Stila Convertible Colour in Peony with aGolden Glow lip stippling brush in light strokes going up the cheekbone, this is a really lovely natural blush which I love in the summer months.

On my lips I used the Revlon Lip Butter in Crème Brule and then applied the 2true Lipgloss in 01 this gave me a honey like nude that surprisingly didn’t wash me out!

Australian Beauty Swap with Karina Bud Blog

Aus01The great thing about the beauty blogging community is the friendliness of its members. Having blogged for a while I’d seen many videos and posts by the brilliant Chloe Morello and have seen many-a Australian beauty product that I really wanted to get my mitts on. Luckily for me the lovely Karina Bud from http://www.karinabud.com/ and I got talking on Instagram and planned a UK/Australian beauty swap. We agreed to buy one another 1 lip, 1 face and 1 eye product (but we both went a little overboard) from our favourite drugstores from our respective countries.

Karina’s post is available HERE if you want to see what I bought her however here’s a run-down of the lovely products Karina selected for me – man that girl has good taste!

Essence SooGlow Cream Highlighter – Look on the Bright Side

This is the product that I asked Karina to pick up specifically as getting hold of Essence in the UK is pretty tricky unless you have a large Wilko store nearby. It’s a lovely creamy, highly pigmented highlighter that’s super easy to apply to the cheek bones, I also Aus02really like this as an eyeshadow base for shimmery colours. It comes in decent packaging that’s nice and slim and is a perfect highlighter for both fair and deep skin tones.

Australis Metallix Cream Eyeshadow – Jay Zed and Pearl Jammin

These cream shadows are ones that I’ve seen Chloe Morello use quite a few times and this stunning shimmery khaki (Jay Zed) and luxurious glitzy copper (Pearl Jammin) are the very reason why I adore cream eyeshadow. It’s a firm moose texture and is beautiful applied with a synthetic brush. Jay Zed is a super unique shade and one that would complement most eye colours and Pearl Jammin can easily be used day or night. However what really impresses me is their pigmentation and staying power. A tiny amount goes a really long way and they also make great eyeshadow bases. I definitely want to pick up more of these as they’re as good (if not better) than my MAC and Bobbi Brown ones!

Innoxa Cream Lip Cream – Simply Stunning

Aus03This product really is something special, it’s a non-sticky gloss like formula that feels nice and cooling on the lips. Although it needs reapplying a fair bit this nude shade really is perfect for me as it’s not too beige. I definitely want to try some of the bolder colours in the range but these really are an awesome hidden gem.

Essence XXXL Long Lasting Lip-gloss – Fabulous Fuchia

This lip-gloss is pretty damn awesome, though not one I’d wear on an everyday basis (due to it’s intense colour) it’s a gloss formula that wears off to a pretty great lip stain. I’d love to try a nude in this range to see if the formulation transcends across the shades however for the price these really are brilliant.

Essence Lipstick – Call Me CoralAus04

I love a coral lipstick and Karina really did pick the perfect tone for me. It airs on the side of orange and isn’t too chalky and creamy in colour. The formulation seems to last a decent amount of time and looks lovely layered with Tanya Burr’s Lip-gloss in I found Nemo – till the cutest product name ever!

I was really pleased with the products Karina chose for me, this girl really does know her stuff! I’ve had good wear out of them all already and will be doing posts using them within the next few days.

I’d love to know your non-UK beauty favourites in the comments?

Lazy Girl: Quick and Easy Hair Styles

Having talked in my Overnight Make-up Bag Post about my go-to easy (and I mean simple) hair-do’s a few of you said you’d like to hear a little more about these…

hair2Easy Waves (for a date)

I start by washing and blow-drying my hair and then putting it up into a bun wrapping the hair around and fixing with an elastic and set with a little strong hold hairspray. 20 minutes minutes before you leave the house you want to blast your bun with the hair-dryer to set again. Let the hair fully cool and let down your bun applying a little dry shampoo to the roots. Finally spray a bit more hairspray over the roots and mid lengths and head out the door! The result is a rough, effortless and easy hair style that’s not too try hard. I love this with smoky eye make-up and mega high heels!

Messy Bun (for a night out with the girls)hair 3

Another easy hairstyle is a messy bun, for this I spray my hair with dry shampoo for grit and then back comb the lengths of my hair and pull it up into a flip bun. Teasing out sections I secure them around the head with grips and spray with a little strong hold hairspray. For me this look is instantly transformed with a bright lipstick!

hair1Side Braid (for work)

A great way to get your hair off your face and create a nice unique detail is to pull your fridge back away from your face and plait. Then take the tail end of the braid and tuck it behind your hair pulling the remaining forward and securing with a grip or two. This looks really effective and keeps things hassle free for a day at work!

Review: Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara

lashsensationalOn more than one occasion I’ve spoken about my impossible quest to find my ‘perfect’ mascara and I’ve really tried to find it over the years. I’ve gone from Clinique to Collection, MAC to MUA and everything in between! I like one that volumises and thickens as I have fairly long lashes but I want one that isn’t going to go spidery or clumpy. Also am I the only one who thinks a mascara is generally ten times better after it’s been opened for a week or two? No?

Of all the mascaras I’ve tried Maybelline seems to always give me the biggest bang for my buck and I tend to choose ones by them over many of the high end ones I’ve tried. My favourite so far is the Colossal Mascara and seems to give me a good amount of feathery lashes without a tonne of fibres though it tends to only look good for 3 or 4 hours! When I saw they’d launched a new mascara I knew I had to give it a try. It has a rubberised, curved want and promises a ‘multiple lash look’ when I tried it I found it gave me good volume though was a little slippery in formula! I’m not entirely sure what the point of the curved want is so if any of you know do drop me a comment. I do however love its ability to build without going clumpy, this is a big plus for me as it’s one that I think would work well for me day to night. It also doesn’t seem to transfer which is also a huge winner in my book!

To be 100% sure on its performance I’ll have to leave it a week or so to really let it get into the prime of its usage and I promise to report back.

Let me know what you thought of it or if you know of any good mascara’s that you think I’d like and I should really try?

Review: Maybelline Face Master Sculpt

maybellinemastersculpt2So everyone and their wife have jumped on the contour hype! Personally it’s not something I do on a day to day basis, I tend to reserve it for big nights out as in the harsh lights of the office I work in I’d represent something similar to an Umpa Lumpa. A little later to the party Maybelline have just released their Master Sculpt Powder duo in two shades in light 01 and medium/dark 02. Though I’m probably naturally the palest of pale I picked up the ‘medium/dark’ shade as the contour shade was much cooler in tone which I find is generally much more flattering for a contour shade. The ‘light’ one had a contour colour that to me was much more of a bronzer!

I was initially attracted to this product as it comes in very similar packaging to the Maybelline Fit Me pressed powder which I absolutely love. This kit contains the cool brown powder to define and a pale champagne highlighter. They’re nicely pigmented; not too much so heavy handed girls go overboard but not too little that you can’t really see any difference.

The compact comes with a small brush which doesn’t seem to serve any real purposes other than to drop out annoyingly but I appreciate the effort of a brand providing a brush rather than a dodgy foam applicator or sponge.maybellinemastersculpt

I like to apply a little of the contour shade using a small tapered brush such as the Real Techniques Setting Brush through the backs of my cheekbones, the sides of my nose, the top of my forehead and along my chin and jaw line. I then use a fluffy brush to blend out any harsh lines and use a small amount of highlight on the tops of my cheekbones. It’s a pretty shade but nothing particularly special. Overall I’d recommend this if you’re new to contouring and you don’t want to spend a fortune however I’m still more of a fan of cream products for contouring.

If you’d like to read my contouring routine then please let me know in the comments!

Mumma Makeover Part 2: Face of the Day

mum1Having posted my Mum’s tips and tricks earlier this week I also took the opportunity to do her makeup for a Sunday Lunch/Dinner at her friend’s house. I wanted to go with something light, pretty and feminine that accentuated my Mum’s lovely green eyes and olive skin. She’s 50 – yup you heard it… she looks bloody amazing for her age (prays to the aging gods that I inherit her good genes!) and I was keen to give her a look that she liked and felt comfortable in! So this is the products we used to give her the look pictured…

Base

I started off by moisturising the face using my Bioderma Sebium Global which makes a great base for makeup however old you are. I then moved on to buffing in the Laura Mercier Hydrating Silk Cream Foundation with a brush and highlighted under the eyes and down the bridge of the nose using the MAC Select Cover Up Concealer in NC20. This worked nicely to lighten and brighten the face without looking cakey or overdone. I set this using the Gosh Prep n Prime powder down the t-zone to eliminate any excess shine whilst letting the natural skin breathe through.

Eyes

For the eye makeup I wanted to define them without applying too much product so I used Kitten eyeshadow by MAC all over the lid with a little of MAC Cork in the crease. I then applied a small amount of MAC Ricepaper in the inner corner to highlight and a little at the top of the brow bone. I then used a Laura Mercier Cream Caviar Stick in coco on the lower and upper lash line. I used a pencil brush to smudge this out a little to give a defined but soft look to the eyes. We used Mum’s mascara which was the L’Oriel Telescopic Mascarca in blash and fethered this throughout the lashes!

For brows we used a little powder in the form of MAC’s eyeshadow in Cork mixed with a little of MAC Aromatic, believe me a scouse brow doesn’t look good on anyone over the age of 30 so keep the brush strokes light and feathery remembering that a fuller brow is more youthful. Oh and as always, eyebrows are sisters not twins so keep it soft!

Finish

I used the Soap and Glory bronzer round the forehead through the back of the cheek bone and on bridge of the nose. On a more mature skin DO NOT contour it’s not a good look and will look aging! mum2A little bronzer however goes a long way to make things look healthy. I then used the Stila Convertible Colour in Lilium and patted this on for a natural flush of colour. Cream products give a dewy glow and look pretty and youthful! I then finished the skin with a tiny amount of highlighter on the cheek bones, for this I used MAC Soft and Gentle.

Lips

For the lips I used a Gosh Forever Lip Shine in Flirty dreams, a pretty coral shade. I then popped on a little of Mum’s Elizabeth Arden Lipgloss in Coral Kiss.

The end result was a pretty, glowing makeup that simply accentuated the facial features and didn’t ‘mask’ anything. Remember less is always more and a little always goes a very long way! If you’d like to hear all about my mum’s greatest tips and tricks and her favourite products read them HERE.