New Purchases

This week I have been making a bit of an effort to find some new and exciting products for me to review for you.  I have been frantically searching Superdrug, Debenhams and Boots in hopes of finding some holy grail products, and it seems as though I have been very successful in my mission.

My first stop was Kiko Milano. This is a brand that I have wanted to try for so long but I’ve never got around to it.  I was actually looking for a new foundation to wear to my formal that day, so I guess you could say that I took a serious gamble on this foundation, however it came through!  With help from the wonderful sales lady, I purchased the Skin Tone foundation and the Hydra Pro Glow.  The Skin Tone foundation is a light-medium buildable foundation with a radiant finish.  It builds perfectly, lasts about eight hours and it makes your skin look like skin.  It doesn’t look cakey, it doesn’t crease and it doesn’t become patchy throughout the day.  I can see all of my freckles underneath this, which I love, and it hides all of my imperfections.

The Hydra Pro Glow is a light effect moisturising cream that contains both hyaluronic acid and Actiglow formula.  It gives the skin a perfect luminosity while hydrating it, and when you combine it with the Skin Tone foundation you get the perfect base.

The next item is the Elf Illuminating Setting Mist.  I love this setting mist because it brings the life and the luminosity back to your skin while setting your makeup in place.  I bought it for £5 in Superdrug, and I would honestly spend more on it.

The next new purchase was the Revolution Reloaded Iconic Division eyeshadow palette. This palette is bittersweet for me.  I absolutely love the shade range, there is a lot of variation and some pretty unique shades. However, the formulation is a little inconsistent, especially with the shimmers.  The bronze shimmer is creamy and relatively pigmented, but the green toned shimmer has little pigment, in fact it resembles a pressed glitter than a shimmer shade.  I have tried to use setting spray with it but the shade just isn’t as good as it could be, the same applies to the pink toned shimmer.  The remaining matte shades are good, they last all day, they blend pretty well and they are quite creamy.  For only £5 this palette is an absolute steal.

The last product I am going to talk about is a bit odd.  It’s not that I don’t like the product, it’s just not what I was expecting.  Different highlighters are formulated for different purposes.  Some are chunky, glitter based, shimmer based, and each highlighter gives a different effect. The Elf highlighter in Moonlight Pearls is a more natural highlight than I am used to, but it is absolutely stunning in its own right.  I had read some pretty mixed reviews online, but the most common opinion was that you had to scrape the top layer off it in order to get a good payoff, and that is so true!  When I first tried it out I was unbelievably disappointed, but I used a spoolie to scrape off the top layer and now it is one of my favourite highlights.

xoxo

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My Daily Makeup Routine

Every month and every year there are new and exciting beauty trends.  One day contouring is out, strobing is in, and the glorious lip-gloss trend of the early 2000’s has resurfaced.  Beauty and fashion trends go around in circles, and that’s the beauty of them.

We all watched Megan Markle and Harry’s wedding on the television, and I was especially impressed with her understated and elegant look that has inspired a global ‘make-under’.  In recent years the ‘Instagram makeup trend’ has gained a lot of popularity, and rightfully so.  The perfectly sculpted brows, sharp liners, wispy eyelashes and perfect complexions are a work of art, but that’s the thing…  Makeup is an art form, and our makeup is our medium.

There are so many trends, just as there are types of art, and each one is just as beautiful as the next.

I am quite enjoying the new ‘make-under’ trend, as I am getting rather bored of painting the same picture on my face.  I was once told by a very successful makeup artist that ‘anyone can paint a daisy, and they can paint it whatever colour they like, but a true artist can paint any flower, any colour, with any medium.  That’s what it takes to be a great makeup artist.’

If I am being honest, after years of layering the foundation, concealer and highlighter on, I am finding it difficult to keep things minimalistic.  In fact, it took me a while to get used to using only a few products, and I was rather uncomfortable with it at the start.  I have

managed to reduce my routine to taking only fifteen minutes and using a handful of products.

  1. I usually don’t prime my skin, and instead I ensure that I thoroughly moisturise it with my Your Good Skin daily moisturiser or the Kiko Milano Hydra Pro Glow.
  2. For foundation, I have been loving the Laura Mercier BB cream or the Kiko Milano Skin Tone foundation, and I usually apply that with my Beauty Blender
  3. If I really need concealer I will use my Collection 2000 Lasting Finish concealer or my Revlon concealer. However, recently I haven’t been putting any on because I think it can make the look a little too ‘perfect’.
  4. Next, I apply some Max Factor Crème blush, and I put that on with a duo-fibre stippling brush.
  5. I cream contour with my Sleek Contour Kit in light, and sometimes I will brighten my under eyes with the lighter shades.
  6. Then I set my under-eyes and oily areas with some Ben Nye loose translucent powder, and I use as little of this as possible as I prefer a glowy and natural look.
  7. Next, I sweep some bronzer on my face, and I blend the same shade into the crease of my eye to give a little definition. On the days I want my look to be more dramatic I will blend this under my eyes as well.
  8. Next, I curl my lashes and lightly apply some mascara to my top lashes, and for dramatic effect I will sometimes apply it to my bottom lashes as well.
  9. Lastly, I will apply some Gilded Honey highlight by Laura Geller and spray my face with some Fix + to set everything in place.

You should try this, consider it a challenge.  Try to reduce your routine to as little products as possible, and then comment below how many products you used and how long it took.

Good luck xo

 

Rape

This blog is primarily about makeup, but it is also a place where I can express myself, a place where I can vent and feel safe.  This has become increasingly important to me in the recent weeks.  Why?  Because I no longer feel safe in this country.

Rape is something that is often spoken about but seldom understood.  It is something that petrifies some people but is a joke to others.  To the survivors, the word strikes fear, and to the innocent, it is just a word.

Rape isn’t a small thing, and it is unbelievably complicated.  Rape isn’t just about consent, it is about informed consent, safety and trust.

Just because someone doesn’t say no, doesn’t mean that they say yes

Is alcohol or drugs involved?  Is the person of sound mind?  Are you really making sure they are consenting?  Sometimes people don’t get the opportunity to say no because they are ambushed, knocked out or paralysed with fear.

The rape culture in Northern Ireland has recently come into the spotlight due to a certain individual… Paddy Jackson.  The details of the case are known by the public, and seemingly everyone thinks that he did it, and yet he was found innocent.  Despite the text messages, the statements, the witness… this man was found innocent.

I know that some people are wondering whether she is telling the truth.  They are asking if it was nothing more than a cry for attention, but unfortunately, the results of this trial have affected more than just her.  This trial has affected every victim, every potential victim, and every assailant in the country.

I can’t imagine how that poor girl feels.  The strength it must have taken to open up about that, to speak about it in a courtroom, to live through that experience.  The strength it must have taken to relive that experience, to have your horror story questioned, to have your nightmare made into a joke.

Every victim shed a tear at that result because it was the day that their worst nightmare came true, the day their hope was shattered.  It was the day that they realised that anyone could get away with it, the day that they felt worthless, the day the fear of no-one believing them came true.

Every attacker felt a sigh of relief because if someone could get away with it, why can’t they?

I have never felt more afraid walking around town that what I do right now.  This trial has stripped my hope, my belief in the justice system, and my belief in people.  However, one good thing has come from this… conversation.

Rape has never been talked about more, people have never been as aware as they are now, and as unsafe as everyone feels, at least we can support one another because we are not alone.

 

L’Oréal Paris Infallible​ Foundation Stick and Primer Review

 

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Foundation sticks are a staple in the beauty industry thanks to the Makeup Forever and Hourglass foundation sticks.  They can be incredibly useful as you as buy highlighting shades, contour shades, foundation shades, strobing shades and even some blush shades!  They can be a wonderful product, and if the formula is right, they can be a must-have in a makeup artist or makeup lover’s collection.

Recently L’Oréal Paris has released a range of foundation sticks, primers and full coverage concealers.  L’Oréal has been releasing some amazing products over the past few months, and one of my favourites is the Lash Paradise mascara, and so I had high hopes for these products.

————————–  Primer  ————————–

There are numerous types of primers, but the one that I purchased was the pore refining one.  This primer is magic in a bottle.  I have really bad pores on my nose and chin, and no other primer has been able to dramatically reduce their appearance.

It has a gel formula, but it doesn’t ‘spread or blend’ across the face easily as it gets tacky quite quickly.  I usually just focus this product on the centre of my face, and half a pump is usually all I would use.

I love this primer.  I think that it is much better than the Benefit Porefessional primer, and it is half of the price.  I am keen to try the other primers, especially the luminous primer as it looks fantastic.

————————–  Foundation  ————————–

This foundation is creamy, bendable and relatively pigmented.  It applies as medium coverage, and you can build it up to a fuller coverage if you wish, but it can start to look a little heavy so be careful!

I have a few issues with this foundation, the first one being the shade range.  I have found that most of the L’Oréal foundations run orange, or they don’t have a shade pale enough for me.  There are 12 foundation shades in total, which is ridiculous coming from such a large and established brand.  I purchased shade 100 (the lightest shade) and it is still too dark and very orange.  However, the shade issue gets worse throughout the day as the foundation oxidises.

L’Oréal true match has over 28 shades of varying undertones, however, each shade in the infallible foundation stick line seem to run very orange.  There are massive gaps between each shade, and there are only 3 deeper shades. I think that this is ridiculous, especially with all of the media attention that Tarte has been receiving for the lack of shades in their foundation ranges.

Moving onto the contour shade that I chose.  I decided to purchase shade 200 as a contour shade as it was the coolest shade.  This foundation works well as a contour.  It blends out seamlessly, it is buildable and has a lovely natural finish.  This is one of the better stick contour products that I have used, and I use this product every day.

The last thing that I want to mention about this product is the longevity of this foundation.  On my skin, this foundation gets pretty oily quite quickly and, if I am not careful, I can end up looking really cakey at the end of the day.  My recommendation would be to try using an oil reducing matte primer with this foundation as it really seems to help.

————————–  Overall  ————————–

Unfortunately, I was not able to purchase and try the concealers as there wasn’t a shade suitable for me.

However, my overall thoughts on this range are that the primers are unbelievable and I will continue to repurchase and use the pore-reducing primer.

With regards to the foundation, I will use this foundation when I fake tan as unfortunately, that is the only time that my skin will be that shade.  I wish that L’Oréal would expand this foundation line to accommodate more skin tones (both lighter and deeper tones), and I wish that they would do the same with their concealers.

Below are photos of the 12 different shades available, and these photos have been taken from Boots.com

 

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I hope you enjoyed this review, and if you have any opinions or questions please leave a comment below!

Five Products I’m Not Repurchasing

Buying something that doesn’t work is disappointing, especially when it’s expensive.  Unfortunately, I sometimes find myself expecting that luxury items are better than their budget alternatives, however, often that isn’t true.   In fact, the majority of my favourite makeup items are from Boots!

This all leads me to a list of products that I am never buying again.  Makeup is specific to the person that wears it, and the way in which you apply it.  These are the products that do not work for my skin, however they do work for others.

  1. Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation

This foundation has never worked for me.  For some reason, it separates on my face, creases in my lines and gets very patchy.  I bought this foundation after all of the raving reviews on YouTube, and I immediately hated it.

  1. Bobbi Brown Foundation Stick

This is another product that just didn’t sit well on my skin.  It separated after only a few hours of wear, and my skin has never looked so cakey and oily in my life!  I also tried the shade 5.25 to contour with, but my skin just looked patchy and awful.  I do think that this is because of my skin, as I know others who absolutely love this foundation, and it looks wonderful on them.

  1. Mac Matte Lipstick

No matter what I do, I cannot seem to get moisture into my lips.  I am always suffering from dry, painful and chapped lips, and it doesn’t matter how much water I drink or how much lip balm I apply.  That is why matte lipsticks usually don’t work for me, however, I find Mac matte lipsticks especially drying.  My lips always end up looking like a scaly mess.  This isn’t because the lipsticks are bad, it’s just because they don’t agree with my skin, and that’s why I usually go for lipsticks with a satin finish.

  1. Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Powder

This product is a cult favourite, and for a good reason.  It is a very finely milled powder, and it certainly does the job, but so do many other loose powders.  I don’t hate this product at all, I have just found that there are other powders out there for cheaper.  My favourite loose powders are the Ben Nye loose powder or the Coty Air spun Loose Powder.

  1. Geurlain L’Or Pure Radiance Face Primer

This is a wonderful primer.  Unfortunately for me, my skin has some fine lines and large pores, and when I apply this product I can visibly see those things fade away.  However, my biggest gripe with this product is the price.  I cannot justify spending £47.50 for one bottle of primer, despite the fact that one bottle has lasted me nearly two years.  You can get primers that do more for a cheaper price, and the new L’Oréal primers are an excellent example of this.

Vegetable Rice Bowl Recipie

Hey everyone.  So, I thought that I’d make this post a little different, you know, change it up a bit!

Cooking has always been a passion of mine, however, how much I can do it depends on my health.  However, recently I have undergone a variety of dietary changes after discovering that I have a few intolerances, which has been a shock to the system to say the least!  My new diet is dairy-free and gluten-free, which may be restrictive to some, but I have never felt more energised or healthy since I have cut out all the food that my body can’t cope with.

One of my favourite things to cook at the minute is a rice bowl with some Quorn steak pieces (gluten free).  This is an absolutely delicious, healthy and filling meal, and I usually have leftovers that can be reheated.

I also just want to say that the reason I use microwaveable rice is for simplicity and convenience.  However, you should use whichever rice you prefer!

Ingredients

  • 1 packet of egg-fried rice
  • Handful of tender stem broccoli
  • Handful of mangetout
  • 1 packet of pepper stir fry vegetables
  • 1 cm of grated ginger
  • Some fresh coriander (put as much in as you like, but I usually put in a large pinch)
  • 2 tbsp. of soy sauce (gluten free)
  • 1 crushed garlic clove
  • 2 Spring onions

Recipe

  1. First, I usually cook the broccoli in a large pan with some rapeseed oil, salt and pepper. I put the lid on the pan and leave it for a few minutes to soften, otherwise you will have some very crunchy broccoli!
  2. Put some Quorn steak pieces in a frying pan, drizzle a little oil and put it on a medium heat. These will take approximately 12 minutes to cook.
  3. I then add in the crushed garlic clove, a little soy sauce and the ginger. I give it a stir, put the lid back on the pan, and I let it cook for another minute.
  4. In the meantime, I will put the rice in the microwave to cook, as well as the mangetout.
  5. Now I will add the packet of pepper stir fry vegetables into the pan, and I will add a little bit more oil and some more soy sauce. Leave this to cook for a few minutes.
  6. Once the vegetables have softened a little more, I put the rice and the mangetout into the pan. I will then place the coriander into the mixture and some more soy sauce if needed.  Once the Quorn is ready I add it in, and then I then season with salt and pepper.

Disclaimer:  I am not a chef, nor do I claim to be.  I am probably doing this all wrong, but I am a student, and I don’t have the time to cook everything from scratch.  It tastes good either way! ❤

This tastes absolutely amazing and it is really filling.  The reason I use the microwave for the mangetout and rice is simply because of convenience.  I usually don’t have a lot of time, so I try to make quick and healthy food when possible.

I hope you guys enjoyed this recipe!  You can modify it to your own dietary needs, and if you do take inspiration from it or recreate it, I hope that you enjoy it!

xoxo

The Story Of This Blog

Starting a website, business or blog is never easy, but it is most certainly worth it.  There is something unbelievably satisfying and addictive about following a dream, especially when there is a chance that you might achieve a dream that you once thought was impossible and out of reach.  Starting this blog was a huge leap forward for me in many ways.  This blog is not only my outlet, a way to relax and a way to express myself, it is also a physical display of my strength, determination and dedication towards achieving my goals.

When I was thirteen I filmed my first youtube video.  The video was a makeup tutorial that was filmed on a terrible phone, and the quality of the video was shocking.  I didn’t know that you could edit the video, and I didn’t know half of the things about makeup, filming, lighting and editing as I do now.  However, that video did something wonderful, it taught me a lesson about myself.  That video taught me that I need to follow my passion, and that my big dreams are nothing to be ashamed of.  However, I have been very sick for a few years, and I have been unable to get out of bed some days, never mind follow my dreams.

For years, the idea of having a blog and a Youtube channel was in the back of my mind, and my passion for makeup only grew stronger and stronger, until I finally decided that it was time to leave my past behind, get up and follow those big dreams that I had lost hope in.  I think that sometimes I am afraid to take chances because I am too afraid of what people think, I am afraid of being judged or ridiculed, but I don’t think that I am going to care about what I did on my death bed, I am going to care about what I didn’t do.

That is how this blog was born, this blog was born out of me having hope for the future, hope of happiness, peace and love.  A lot has happened to me this year that has diminished any shred of hope or happiness that I once had, but that’s the funny thing, rather than be bitter, hurt and sad, I decided that it was time to funnel that energy into getting away from what hurt me.

I decided to write this post because I wanted you to learn from my mistakes, and I wanted you to know me better.  If I had one wish it would be that I believed in myself and my abilities sooner.  I wish that I didn’t let the bullies get to me and diminish my hope, I wish that I had the strength to ignore the negativity, and I wish that I had the same knowledge a few years ago as I do now.

Anyway, this blog is a part of me and I am so proud of how far it has come in the short space of time that it has been live, and I am grateful to all of my subscribers and viewers as you are helping me achieve my dreams.

Thank you so much!  I wish you all the best, and I hope that you all achieve all of your dreams as well!