Boots haul incoming! 3 for 2 on pretty much everything + double points voucher = lots of spending and little self-restraint. Makeup, skincare, haircare, I covered all bases.
The makeup aisles were first on my hitlist and with nothing in particular in mind I eventually settled on two lip products and one concealer. The Bourjois CC Eye Cream in Ivory was a bit of a no-brainer as for a long time now I've just been using my foundation in place of a dedicated under eye concealer but when said foundation is YSL Le Teint Touche Eclat it's a very pricey and slightly painful habit. Unlike most under eye concealers this one from Bourjois has a rubber tip making things more hygienic and generally less messy and after applying it (albeit over my makeup) I can confirm that it brightens things up without any dryness.
Also from Bourjois (what can I say, I love that brand) I finally picked up a lipstick I've been eyeing up for just about forever. The Bourjois Shine Edition Lipstick in 24 Rose xoxo (I'll forgive the cringe name) is a pinky-mauve shade with subtle silver shimmer running through. You know when you see a colour and you just know? You know that it's going to be perfect on you and you know that you'll never have it off. That's me, with this.
Now, I can't really say I'm a lipgloss girl. But I definitely do like some shine and gloss from lipstick and a definitely do not like matte lips - on me. Lipglosses seem to be having a bit of a moment right now - who'da thought - and the Maybelline Coloursensational Shine Glosses in particular are getting their fair share of hype. I got Cashmere Rose, a very pretty peachy-pink that imparts a slick of sheer colour and lightens my pigmented lips slightly. It smells good, it's not too sticky and it's not in yo' face glossy - which I like. I've only had this a short time (literally a few hours) but I can't stop applying it.
Next: skincare. And all of it from the Super Facialist by Una Brennan range. Given that I've used a few things from there before, loved one and felt very 'meh' about the other two it might seem a bit silly to go and buy another three things but they really appealed to me and hey ho, three for two and all that. So, I got the Gentle Daily Micro Polish Wash (which smells divine), the Tea Flower Deep Clean Pore Purifying Clay Mask and the Neroli Firming Lifting Treatment Mask. A nicely well-rounded set of products which I'm itching to use so roll on bedtime.
And finally, the rare appearance of a haircare product. These texturising sprays are brilliant and a much better option than loading your hair with sticky, crispy hairspray. I've used Oribe's, I liked it, I've used VO5's, I liked it even better because of the price and now I've got the Charles Worthington Volume & Bounce Texturising Spray to play with. After a few spritzes it's definitely added some much needed texture to my hair so we'll see how this one measures up to the mighty Oribe.
And that's about it *phew*. You know when you have new makeup and skincare to play with and you're really excited? That. And OK so I have new stuff pretty much all the damn time but still that feeling doesn't go away. Hooray for 3 for 2's!
There's a certain look I aim to achieve everyday with my makeup and that is to keep me looking fresh, pretty and awake and my eye makeup follows the same trend meaning there's no room for eye shadow or eyeliner which can start to make things look a little messy and overdone. For as long as I can remember my daily eye makeup has consisted of nothing more than (lots of) mascara and a small flick of eyeliner at the ends of the eyes (and I've even ditched that recently). Now don't get me wrong, I wouldn't even consider going on a night out without my eyeshadow which certainly has its time and place but on a daytime I like to keep things more bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.
For the longest time I didn't use anything on my eyelids and kept them bare but recently a product has entered my life and I can't see it leaving anytime soon. The product in question? MAC Paint Pot in Painterly. This stuff is like concealer for the eyelids; it evens everything out a little and covers those visible veins but unlike concealer it has good lasting-power. Another major plus point goes to its non-creasing abilities; ok so it still creases a little bit at the very inner corner of my eyes but I can deal and it certainly blows my Benefit 'Creaseless' Cream outta the water. The colour is a matte beige-pink, slightly darker than my skintone and results in a very, very subtle shadow to my crease. I like. It's polished eyelids in a pot.
The next bit? Eyelash curlers. No pencil/liquid/gel eyeliner, nada. I have slightly hooded eyelids which means my eye makeup is all about keeping things looking as awake and opened up as possible and eyeliner is not conducive to that. Curled lashes are an absolute must for me as unfortunately I 'suffer' from the unfortunate case of stick-straight eyelashes. Sometimes I think I would rather go without mascara at all than mascara without curled lashes, I just hate how they look otherwise. Obsessed, me? never. My eyelash curlers of choice are from Shiseido - you can keep your Shu's thank you. I've had 'em, used 'em but for me the Shiseido's are much more comfortable and give a better curl.
The (kind of) last step is mascara and since I got my tube of Seventeen Doll'd Up I haven't used anything else. For curled lashes this stuff is the bomb. Rarely does a mascara that states it holds a curl actually live up to its claims but this one delivers. It lengthens, adds some volume, doesn't clump, holds a curl amazingly and basically makes my eyelashes look pretty awesome. Of course knowing my defiant lashes this isn't enough to keep them staying upright instead of pointing south and once completely dry I give them another squeeze of the curlers, add more mascara and repeat unil I'm satisfied.
Considering it's a simple routine it's a pretty faffy one too, huh? Let me know how you prefer your eye makeup on a day to day basis too, are you a fan of the clean, polished look or all about eyeshadow?
MAC is the brand I turn to when I fancy a splurge, usually for no particular reason other than 'I feel like buying some MAC today'. I know the brand well, I know the products well and I know that I'm (generally) never let down. In this particular instance I bought a couple of products I've wanted for just about forever and another from the Fantasy of Flowers collection bought on a total whim where my thought process was something along the lines of 'ah, feck it'.
Firstly, the products that I've wanted for what feels like an age: MAC Paint Pot in Painterly and MAC Russian Red. It's probably fair to say these two are pretty much cult products from the brand so I have no idea what took me so long to actually, y'know, buy them. I'm not much of a red lip wearer but when I am my favoured shade is a deeper, darker red which is why Russian Red has always been calling my name. I've yet to use it (first I need an appropriate time and place) but the colour in the bullet is exactly what I was hoping for and *fingers crossed* it means I'll be sporting a red lip slightly more often now.
When I got to first applying Painterly my reaction was something along the lines of 'WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY LIFE'. Caps needed. It's a matte, slightly darker than my skintone beige colour with a slightly thick but not cakey texture that can be used as a base for eyeshadow or by simply slicking it on the eyelid and being done with it - my favoured method. I have both oily eyelids and visible veins; Painterly manages to both keep the oiliness at bay and does a fantastic job of covering up those blue veins and evening out the eyelid area. In fact, back in my Uni days I used to use concealer on my eyelids to brighten the area which done the job but also resulted in super-creasing five minutes later. Painterly does the same thing but a hundred times better. A definite MAC staple, I only wish I had bought it a lot sooner.
This one may surprise you. I have never bought anything from a MAC collection before, until now. I don't know why and I don't know why this time around I decided the Fantasy of Flowers collection would be the one to end it, but it did. I had high hopes for the Rose Lily lipstick which was appealing from the get-go: the colour, the description, the name but in reality? I'm disappointed. Rose Lily reminds me of a slightly more subdued version of St Germain (yep, I used to have it, definitely not for me); it's that intense cool-toned almost lilac-leaning pastel pink and while Rose Lily is a little more toned down it's still very 'in your face' and it's definitely one to avoid if you don't suit cool colours. It also requires a very neutral blush or even none at all as it clashes with even my more natural of pink-toned blushers. I really think it would have fared better as a glaze rather than a lustre finish: more sheer, more gloss, less crazy, clashing, bubblegum pink.
So it's a wholehearted 'yay' for Painterly and Russian Red and a 'nay' for Rose Lily, unfortunately. Hopefully my next foray into a MAC collection will be a more positive one, or maybe I should just stick to the permanent line from now on.
It's that time again. Mostly new buys, one old and one discontinued but I love 'em all. There's even some new skincare in there which I'm happy about; it's been a long time since I bought anything new for my skin after having a solid routine for months on end and it's made a very welcome appearance. On with the favourites.
February saw the purchase of a couple of new bases which is unlike me as I tend to stick to the same foundation for a long time (see: Bourjois Happy Light and Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum) and it definitely feels nice to be putting something a little more luxe on my face. I feel like I've already ranted on about the both of them enough already but in short, I loveYSL Le Teint Touche Eclat in B10 for matching my skin amazingly and I love the Clarins Instant Light Radiance Boosting Complexion Base in Champagne for adding extra moisture to my skin, evening it out and giving a healthy glow. For the past few days I've been enjoying mixing together YSL and Nars Sheer Glow in Fiji; the former adds some lightness to the latter and creates a base that covers well without looking or feeling heavy. It's a good combo.
Another one I've already gone on and on about is the discontinued MAC Cream Colour Base in Virgin Isle. The colour is something else; it's a bright, bright almost neon-looking red based coral that is verrry pigmented but lightly stippled onto the cheeks gives a lovely pink flush. I really feel this would be one of those universally-flattering sorta colours that looks slightly different on everyone. FYI this is also the colour that's used on Christina Hendricks in Mad Men. If it's good enough for Christina...
It's very rare I ever feature a haircare product on the blog. I generally hate my hair for its boring colour, boring cut and post-wash limpness and on a day to day basis I do nothing more than wash, blow-dry, straighten (if I can be bothered) and go. But there is one product I always, always use on my hair after it's been washed and before I dry it: the Sachajuan Leave In Conditioner. This stuff is gooood. If you're one of those people who always has dry hair ends this is kind of a godsend. I spray it liberally through the ends of my damp hair, blow-dry and my hair is left feeling really, really soft. Cult Beauty describe it as 'turning straw into gold' and I mean, I wouldn't go that far but it's a pretty good analogy. Plus it smells amazing.
Finally, after a long time I bought a new skincare product and I love it. My skin has been really dry lately (and I mean really dry) and all my cleansers (yep, even Emma Hardie) leave it feeling tight and itching for moisturiser post-cleanse. The Trilogy Very Gentle Cleansing Cream cleans my face without leaving it red or crying out for hydration and contains lots of good stuff, lots of oils and really is very gentle and calming. It's no surprise I like this really, after all I've nearly finished my bottle of Trilogy Rosehip Oil which I use nightly without fail. Now I'm itching to try more - the brand seems like a dry-skinned person's dream. Someone buy me it all? Thanks.
I've bought lots of new things recently which generally equates to lots of new favourites but I really think I need to reign it in slightly in March... although saying that it is my birthday next week. A girl's gotta indulge a little on her birthday, right?
I seem to be all about the foundations/bb creams/general complexion enhancers recently given that I've bought three in as many weeks where ordinarily I wouldn't have even bought one. Luckily I got them just as I ran out of both Bourois Healthy Mix Serum and Rimmel Match Perfection (my mixing base of choice) so I don't feel so bad and besides, it's not often I find myself indulging in a more fancy foundation so I thought it 'bout time.
Most fancy foundation purchase is YSL Touche Eclat. After a lot of uhhming and ahhing over shades and one fail in the purchase of B20 I finally struck gold with B10. Given that B20 is the next shade up you'd think there wouldn't be a great deal of difference but there is. A lot. Pale girls, B10 (or BR/BD) is your shade for sure and I wouldn't touch anything upwards from that. Having used Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum in 51 for so long it feels nice to have a foundation that actually matches my skin tone. I love my Healthy Mix but the lightest shade was definitely a tad too dark in the Winter and the strong yellow tones definitely not right for my skin. The pinkness of Touche Eclat fits my skin much better and and for once I don't even have to do any neck blending, hooray! Shade raving out of the way it's also the consistency of this stuff I love. It has a very liquidy and runny texture but doesn't sheer out to nothing-ness on the skin. Sure, it's not gonna cover lots of redness and blemishes - far from it - but it evens out the skin nicely and with some concealing my skin is left looking natural but perfected; isn't that what everyone wants from their foundation?
Next fancy purchase that's not a foundation but more along the lines of a tinted moisturiser is the newly released Clarins Instant Light Radiance Boosting Complexion Base in Champagne. I was initially a bit confused what this was marketing itself as: is it a primer? A highlighter? An all-round complexion booster? Personally I go with tinted moisturiser, or at least the shade Champagne certainly lends itself towards it; it both moisturises and evens out the skin. At the minute I'm not convinced this is totally necessary under foundation (I feel Rose would be more suited to that) but I totally foresee this being my Summertime base of choice. Watch this space.
Finally we have the cheapest option and perhaps unsurprisingly it's my least favourite of the three. The Bourjois 123 Perfect CC Cream in 31 Ivory is nice but not outstanding. It claims 24 hour hydration and while it's nicely runny (it appeals to my dry skin) it's the least hydrating of the lot. The lightest colour is also a touch too dark for me which is no deal breaker but when it's got foundations to contend with that both match my skin and are more hydrating I'm less likely to pick it up. Good points? It probably offers the most coverage of the three but because I'm on a bit of a lightweight base binge at the minute (dry skin woes) I'm again choosing other foundations over it. In short: I like it but I don't love it.
The verdict? YSL rules. And I'm expecting Clarins to rule in the Summer. But mostly YSL rules.