24.1.12

J'adore Dior

I haven't covered Fashion Week or Couture Week for a few seasons now. Although I am studying fashion, I don't feel my opinions are strong enough to justify critiquing fashion just yet. However, I have just been flicking through Dior's Couture collection and it is simply beautiful. The change over from John Galliano to Bill Gaytten has been smooth and even. Gaytten has created a collection based on Dior's heritage; clean cuts and beautiful tailoring. I can't help but love the 50's references, and simply adore the chiffon. Sigh*




22.1.12

Laura Mercier Silk Creme Foundation Review

I am so behind on 'new' foundation loves, but I have finally gotten my hands on a sample of the Laura Mercier Sillk Creme Foundation! It seems everyone and their cat loves this foundation for its semi-matte, yet luminous finish and excellent coverage. It is also hailed by gurus and bloggers that it doesn't oxidize (go orange) at all, and gives a beautiful coverage all day long. I was given the colour Cream Ivory by the sales assistant in John Lewis. Frankly, his service was horrific and I will be writing to John Lewis Oxford Street this week to complain!
Throughout the day, I updated the experience on my Twitter so follow me there for up to the minute updates. To begin: the application was interesting. I used my MAC concealer brush to apply dots along my inner cheeks, which is where I usually begin my foundation as that area needs the most coverage. I began blending it in with my Real Techniques buffing brush and was horrified as it split and went all crumbled as the MAC Matchmaster did. However, with further blending it seamlessly blended in to my skin leaving an almost full coverage. This foundation also builds well as I needed a little more coverage on my cheeks.
Very fashionable dressing gown- thanks mum. So as you can see the coverage is pretty impressive. Unfortunately I have an open spot (my own fault) on my forehead, but you can see it doesn't quite cover red spots or under eye circles. For the first time in what feels like forever, I used my YSL Touche Eclat in shade 1 (original collection) under my eyes and MAC Select Cover Up concealer in NC20 on my spots and around my nose. This worked perfectly.
On the tube home... So after 5 hours of pretty incredible wear, shiny nose hell arrived. I have oily skin and powders make me look cakey, so having a shiny nose is something I am used to. Overall though, the colour and the coverage was impressive throughout the day. Bear in mind I was in an air-conditioned room all day and then in the freezing cold air, then the hot tube. 
By the end of the day the shininess had covered my face, and the product had begun slipping away. This was after 10 hours of wear, so I am genuinely very impressed with the product.
Pro:
  • colour is great
  • coverage is almost full, leaving the skin showing through a tiny amount
  • it lasts a very long time in different environments
  • the skin feels soft and not cakey
  • doesn't sit in fine lines 
Con:
  • doesn't cover spots 
  • doesn't cover dark circles
  • takes a lot of blending to seep in to the skin
  • price!
Overall:
8.5/10. I am really considering asking for this product as a gift for my birthday in March, rather than paying for it myself. Available at most department stores, and on Laura Mercier's website. 

19.1.12

Spring Trend: Flirty Lashes

Inspired by Louis Vuitton's S/S12 make up looks, today I used a new mascara to experiment with more flirty lashes. My general mascara love is Rimmel's Extra Super Lash in Brown/Black. I love the natural look that doesn't look clumpy, overly black or fake on my pale skin and blonde hair combination. The Vuitton spring look however, made the lashes look fluttery and flirty. Focusing on the outer corner to create an open eye look, false demi or individual lashes can be applied for an evening appropriate look. You could also use a separating and lengthening mascara on the outer lashes too.
So I raided my limited supply of mascaras and picked out MAC Zoomlash in Black. I was hunting for my YSL Shocking but I couldn't find it anywhere. I used the tip of the brush to manually place the outer lashes where I wanted them and used light coats to build up the intensity. If you have a favourite mascara for the Spring season, comment below and I will check it out.


18.1.12

MAC Matchmaster Foundation Review

Today is the day I reveal possibly my biggest disappointing on 2011. Late I know, but I forgot how badly let down I was by this product and I used it on Monday. MAC's foundations have had a bit of a bad rep with me. I loved Satinfinish when I was in my first year at uni, but as my skin became more oily it began to 'split' during the day and look kind of like a split custard on my face.
Matchmaster has basically the same effect. I purchased the MAC Matchmaster foundation in November last year after reading press about it in September and hearing loads of Youtube girls and bloggers talking about it. I was advised that the shade 1.0 was ghost white, but it turned out that it was pretty much the perfect colour for me. It didn't have a hugely yellow undertone, which I had been so used to from my Chanel Mat Lumier and Pro Lumier.
 So, I applied this on Monday using a stippling brush from Real Techniques, which is my most favourite foundation brush ever. I have, in the past, also applied Matchmaster using a Model's Own Foundation Brush (similar to a MAC 190) and my fingers. All three application techniques however, just don't work with this product. I am at my wits end of trying to find a way to make this actually blend in to the skin. It first looks streaky, then crumbly and over the day just split up entirely.
The coverage is frankly rubbish, but I have been really lucky with my skin this week and have been really wanting to wear a lighter coverage foundation. It looks OK from about 2 metres away, but any closer and you just look multi-coloured and patchy! Such a disappointment considering the price. 
I have oily skin, like a boat of chip fat oily skin, so for me the sign of a really terrible foundation is one that can make my skin look flaky, uber dry and unhealthy. I want a matte to semi-matte finish, so a dry and crumbly finish just isn't for me. If you have worn this foundation and love it, leave a comment below and let me know. Also, if you have a medium coverage foundation that you love just let me know.  For on-the-move make up reviews, follow me on twitter here. 

17.1.12

OOTD: Butterfly Comfort



 
Another average outfit. I spent the day at the library working on my current research project. I am evidently becoming an expert in future community and where fashion & cosmetics are going in the next five years. 2017= very exciting!
Shirt: New Look
Jeans: Topshop
Bag: Paul's Boutique
Cardigan: Atmosphere
Perfume: Burberry Body
Earrings: Forever 21

So the sun managed to make an appearance over North London today, so despite begin only 5 degrees outside I wore my Bourjois sunglasses I got in the summer holidays, and felt beyond glamorous. It was definitely a busy day, full of iPad's running out of battery, children running in to me and loosing my eyesight slowly but surely staring at books.
I am currently in love with testing new face products. I have been looking at face masks for the last week, and this week I'm trialing two new foundations. I wore possible the most rubbish foundation, for its price, today and I will be reviewing it later this week. How was your day?




16.1.12

Purple Liner Challenge

So the big trend this season, as I said in my "Spring Trend: Pastel Nails" video is... candy pastels. Today I rocked purple eyeliner. As a fun alternative to my usual black winged liner, this purple look was more unique and exciting.

 I used my Accessorize pallet that I got for Christmas from my boyfriend's Mum. I selected the blue/pink toned purple from the top row. I used a MAC 266, which is an angled eyeliner brush. I ran the brush under the tap, and knocked off the excess water. I then dipped the brush into the purple colour, and ran it along the top lash line. It applied quite watery, but was easy to build up colour intensity. I also used the MAC Matchmaster foundation again today, review coming up this week!

15.1.12

Mayan Mud Mask

So unless you hadn't guessed, I have become obsessed with face masks. I got a few new ones for Christmas, and I have become really obsessed with them. You can read my Elemis reviews below, but today I am using a natural mask.
For Christmas, I got a Mayan Mud Mask. Yes, that's Mayan as in the people who have predicted the end of the world. I've always had a bad run with mud masks, as they generally contain cocoa butter and shea butter. This mask, to my surprise, is actually mud. Like, grainy weird looking mud. It's dry, and doesn't have that elasticy rubbery texture that packet mixed masks you can get from Boots and Superdrug. You start the mask by mixing it with a tsp of warm water. It takes alot of mixing, but becomes a thick watery paste.


I used a Model's Own foundation brush to apply the mask on to my skin. I used up and down motions starting at my chin and working towards my forehead. Just a word of warning, it is incredibly watery and drips down the face so hold your head over the sink!

So I look insane. I am wearing a towel around my shoulders as I am wearing white pajaymas and don't want them ruined. It dries into a crumbly mud texture on the face, which is slightly uncomfortable. However, as you wash it off with warm water it acts as a mild exfoliant getting ride of any dry skin that's left behind. Here's another shot of me looking insane:
At the end of the day, the mask has left my skin feeling tight but in the way that is good... makes no sense, and  soft which is just lovely. So for looking absolutely mad, the results are worth it. On to the next mask! I promise there are some OOTD's and different reviews coming up!


14.1.12

Elemis Exotic Moisturising Mask Review

Another mask review! Today I used the Elemis Exotic Moisturising Mask. I went on a night out last night with Chris and the girls, and when I woke up this morning my skin was incredibly dry, dehydrated and generally unhappy. Not only that, after using the Elemis Papaya Peel a few days ago (review hereSo a moisture mask was just what I needed.
This mask is enriched with plant extracts that are naturally known for their moisture boosting properties, including super soft honey, sea rocket, mallow, mandarin and bergamot. These also make the mask smell incredible. Upon application , the mask does tingle but I had just fully cleansed using Nivea Daily Essentials Refreshing Cleansing Lotion (review/video coming soon) so my skin was feeling a little sensitive.
The mask claims to be "super moisturising" "deeply cleansing" and provides "a youthful glow". As with the Peel, this is also an anti-ageing product. After washing the mask off after 10 minutes, (it can be worn overnight) my skin feels very soft but not completely remoisturised so I would reccomend leaving it on for at least 15-20 minutes. Seeing as I have oily skin, I expected this mask to really help.

End of story? I like this mask, my skin feels soft and replenished, but it should be left on for longer. You can purchase the full size mask here for £30.70.

12.1.12

Most Used Hair Product

I am incredibly picky when it comes to hair products. Not only that, I change them up as often as I can. So when I finally stick to a product for more than a few weeks, I know I must really love it. I generally go for products that perform the same functions. I like smoothing and frizz controlling serums, creams and oils. Anything to control my mass of frizzy and unruly hair!
 This Create the Shape Smoothing Balm from a company called Guy Kremer. I was sent this last Autumn for consideration at Anarchy Magazine. I have been using it nearly every day since I was sent it, which is a sure sign that the product is really working for me.
The product comes out as a thick balm textured cream. You need about a pea sized amount for all of your hair, which is how it has lasted so long! It creates a smooth and soft texture to the hair, defrizzes well and keeps my hair smooth straight throughout the day. I was also sent the Guy Kremer Hairspray, however it doesn't have the same hold power as this balm so I would definitely reccomend the Smoothing Balm. You can buy it from the official Guy Kremer website here.  

11.1.12

Spring Trends: Candy Nails Video



The W7 products were sent to me consideration. This is not a sponsored post.

9.1.12

Elemis Enzyme Peel: Review

Time for some expensive treatments. My Auntie so kindly gave me a few Elemis products to play with, as now I am back at uni I can't really afford luxury beauty treatments. So the first product that I have used is the Papaya Enzyme Peel. According to the Elemis booklet that came with the products, this treatment is "perfect for complexions which are sensitive", which is definitely me. My skin breaks out so easily, and hates harsh treatments. Despite this, I have oily and acne prone skin so I need to tackle my icky-ness in a softer and often more natural way.
A great brand for sensitive, oily and acne prone skin is La Roche Posay and I have several reviews of their products on this blog so just use the search bar the find them. Back to the Elemis treatment. I have never used Elemis before, but I am in the knowledge that their skin care is incredible. This peel is enriched with papaya and pineapple, and uses their "natural fruit enzyme action" to exfoliate the skin folicles. If you've ever eaten a pineapple, you'll recognize it's tangy taste: that's the acid enzymes which in the peel are used to work on the skin. As an exfoliator, you would expect this peel to have graininess or beads, however this product uses fruit acids as a replacement.

As well as exfoliating, the peel contains milk protein, anti-oxidant rich vitamin E, and marine algae to nourish and remoisturise the skin. Peels can often be hyper drying and dehydrating on the skin, so to have built in remoisturising ingredients is a real bonus. These ingrediants also work to repair unhappy skin, and protect it in the future.
To apply this mask, fully remove all make up: I use baby wipes as these are sensitive enough to not irritate my skin. Then cleanse using your favourite cleanser and pat the face dry. Using around a pea sized amount to start with (the product is quite runny), begin to work the peel into the cheeks nose and chin. If you need more,  for the forehead used about half the amount and work into the forehead. Avoid the eye area completely. Leave for 10-15 minutes, and rinse away with lukewarm water.

Although the product isn't clay based, it does get that dry and cakey feeling around the edge of the face just before you wash it off. It rinses off easily, and leaves the skin feeling super plump, soft and regenerated. I am really impressed with the texture of my skin, as it feels smooth and evenly textured. As for 'brightness and clarity' I can't say any of my redness or spots have dissapeared immediately, but I will check in the morning for further results.

The Papaya Enzyme Peel costs £28.60, for a full size 50ml bottle. You can purchase it at Time to Spa here. This product is also highly commended by Elle UK Magazine. Read here

4.1.12

Top Products of 2011

I had every intention of videoing this topic, rather than blogging, but my iPad is refusing to load my Youtube videos. So expect about five new videos on Sunday when I get home! So as 2012 rolls in, it's time to review my top products of 2011.
2011 for me, was a year of learning, inspiration and definite change. My skin type has become oily from dry, and I have really opened up to trying new products and improving my look. So here are my top products of 2011!
 Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation (01 Creamy Ivory/ 11 Very Light), MAC Paintpot (Bare Study), MAC Eyebrow Pencil (Fling), Maybelline Gel Studio Eyeliner (Black), Rimmel Extra Super Lash Mascara (Brown Black), Dior Addict Lipstick (Beige Perfection) and MAC Sheer Tone Blusher (Tenderling)
 L-R: Mascara, Paintpot, Eyeliner, Eyebrow Pencil, Lipstick
 Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman Stippling Brush, W7 Eyebrow Comb, MAC 217, MAC 206, MAC 128SH
Clinique All About Eyes Eye Cream, Vaseline, Vichy Aqualia Thermal Moisturizer, Vichy Normaderm Moisturizer, Cliique Anti- Blemish Solutions Clarifying Lotion

If you would like me to do a video discussing these then please comment below, and I will be sure to try and film  one for you. Once again, here's to 2012.. 

3.1.12

New Year's Resolutions

This post is way over due. I did film a video discussing what my aims for the next year were, but my iPad is refusing to load my Youtube videos... how odd! I usually make the same resolution every year; "to eat less chocolate", but this year I want to really work on my inner character, and hopefully improve the quality of my day to day life.
Become more positive. This seems incredibly vague I know, but trust me a moment. I'm going to split this heading into four subtitles, which will add up to a more positive and stress free life. Being more positive is not only good for your inner character, but the people around you, relationships and your professional life. This year I start the final year of my degree, and I need to be in top form mentally to survive the year, and complete my degree to the best of my ability. So here's the 'sub-headings'.
1) Get on with my sister better.
My sister and I are incredibly different but very similar at the same time, and due to differences and difficulties in our family life we have grown apart. We were alot closer when we were younger, we even dressed the same, and I really want to rebuild the relationship I have with my sister. She's really bright, interesting and fun to be around, so this goal means so much to me.
2) Eat better, eat different.
Everyone wants to lose weight in January, but this year I'm going to take a different approach. I want to really explore new foods, and open my mind to different food groups and cuisines. To maintain a healthy lifestyle while doing this, I will  be trying my hardest to get my 5-a-day. I will also but cutting out a different food type each month. For example, this month I am not eating meat, then next month I'm not eating bread, and the next milk. I think this will encourage me to be more adventurous with the foods I try.
3) Be more active
Similar to number 2. In being more physically active, the body produces endorphines which make you happy.. Physical activity also boosts brain activity, making your more mentally aware and productive
4) Stress less
I stress out so easily. If the tube is late, or my hair isn't working, or if I have a spot it can ruin my entire day. I want to stress out way less, and become more calm in difficult situations. This goes hand in hand with having more body confidence, and my ultimate goal here is to have one day at university with no make up on! Right now, that sounds terrifying, but I want to get there.

So that's my New Year goals. I'd love to hear yours, and to help each other achieve them. Comment below, and we'll track each other's progress, and maybe this year everyone will reach their goals. :)

1.1.12

What Did I Wear?

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you all had a great time celebrating bringing in the New Year. Alex and I traveled home to London, to watch the fireworks at the Southbank. Unfortunately, Embankment station was closed and so we got off at Charing Cross. But then the viewing areas were full, so we joined the crowds at Trafalgar Square and partied the night away with complete strangers. I wore this awesome glitter eye look, which I originally showed on this blog here. I used a turquoise colour from the Accesorize eyeshadow pallet (Christmas Gift), and the W7 Glitter liner in Green. I used an Orange lip gloss from Feeling Fruity, and Estee Lauder foundation. Excuse the lighting, tube stations do not do photos justice!