Review | Celltone Moisturiser & Xtra Hydrating Treatment

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As a dry skin girl I have very high standards when it comes to a moisturiser & I’m not an easy woman to please. When I finished up the last of my moisturiser I fancied trying something new & went on the hunt for a new product I could fall in love with. So while shopping in Dis-chem I came across the brand Celltone.

Being from the UK I’d never heard of this brand before & the reason for that is because they are a South African company who only sell here. Celltone became well known because they use snail gel extract in their products which has been known to soften, smooth & anti-age the skin – all the things I want & need. 

Here’s what I thought of their Daily Moisturiser & Xtra Hydrating Treatment:

Daily Moisturising Facial Lotion

What Celltone claim

‘Celltone Daily Moisturiser contains a medley of oils, Argan, Calendula & Olive. It contains UVA & UVB sunscreen filters. Enriched with Anti-Oxidants and Vitamins A, B3, C & E to soften & moisturise the skin. Snail Extract enriched. Paraben & perfume free.’

What attracted me to this product was the amount of natural oils that are in this moisturiser. I’m a firm believer in using as much of what mother nature gave us as possible so I always love to see products filled with natural products & without parabens. This product also has SPF 15 & protects against both UVA & UVB rays which is so important for keeping our faces fresh & young.
When I first opened the box I was so shocked at how generous Celltone are with the amount of product they give you – there’s a whopping 125ml of product in that bottle! After trying the product I realised why this is the case – it’s a very thin moisturiser & I tend to use a full pump with every application. Which brings me onto my next point, it has a pump! Woohoo! I don’t know what it is about beauty bloggers & pumps but we just love them for how easy they make using a product.
While this moisturiser has a thin consistency it still moisturises my dry skin really well without making it look greasy. In fact, it leaves my skin looking healthy & glowy. It also sinks in super fast which makes it the perfect moisturiser to apply before putting on your makeup!
I also wanted to note that Celltone is against animal testing. It’s so difficult to find companies who don’t test on animals these days & I like to buy as many animal testing free products as I can. Thankfully I’ve found one!
The only negative things I have to say about this product are that I would have loved a higher SPF than 15 and also the scent isn’t my favourite. I love natural scents but I find the rose scent of this moisturiser a little too much as I’m not such a fan of rose scents. I don’t find it offensive, it’s just not my favourite.

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Xtra Hydrating Treatment

What Celltone Claim

‘A superior hydrating treatment cream made for face & body providing an invisible mesh on the skin. The mesh releases hydrating agents bringing moisture to even the driest skin. Soothing BCA Blend (Bisabalol, Calendula & Allantoin) – known for its soothing properties has been added to assist in relieving discomfort of dry skin. Beautifully silky emolients may increase aquaporin synthesis & therefore improve the water channels into the skin’

I don’t know about you but that description sounds like witchcraft!
I bought this moisturiser in addition to the daily moisturiser as I prefer a richer moisturiser in the evening & also on days when my skin is extra dry. This product is of a much thicker consistency which you can (hopefully) see in the photo below:

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Left – Daily Moisturising Lotion. Right – Xtra Hydrating Treatment

While this  product is of a much thicker consistency than the daily moisturiser it still absorbs quickly into the skin & leaves it feeling so hydrated. I really loved how my skin felt after this product & it got rid of any dry patches I had. I was initially worried that such a rich moisturiser would clog my easily clogged pores but thankfully its full of non-comedogenic ingredients that haven’t left me with breakouts. While Celltone call this a treatment rather than a moisturiser it can still be used every day as a moisturiser & it contains SPF 15 so it can be worn during the day on extra dry skin days too.
Like the Daily Moisturiser the Xtra Hydrating Treatment is scented but it has a much more subtle rose scent along with that ‘face cream’ smell so its much less offensive which I prefer.

The Final Verdict

These two products were the first that I ever bought from Celltone & I’m very much enjoying using them in my daily routine. It’s great to have found an affordable brand that’s full of natural ingredients, is paraben free & that is against animal testing. I’ll definitely be trying a few more of their products because I really am impressed!

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| The Best of Real Techniques Makeup Brushes |

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I go on & on about makeup here on Beauty & The Blouse but what good is makeup if you don’t have good brushes to apply it with!

Over the years I’ve tried a bunch of brushes from different brands but I always find myself reaching for my Real Techniques brushes. From the moment I bought my first Real Techniques set I completely fell in love & a long love affair began. They offer so many different brushes, superb quality, affordable prices & not to mention they look cute too. I just can’t fault them!

So lets get into my Real Techniques favourites:

Real Techniques Nic’s Picks Limited Edition Brush Set

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I hate talking about limited addition products in case you guys can’t get a hold of them so I’m sorry that I’m mentioning these but you can still buy them online if you want them! In the Nic’s Picks collection there are 5 brushes but it is only 3 of these that made it into my Ride or Die selection; the Cheek Brush, the Angled Eyeshadow Brush & the Base Shadow Brush.

The Cheek Brush (set exclusive): (1st photo above) This is my absolute go-to blush brush. It’s so dense & picks up a lot of product (so be careful with those super pigmented blushes) & blends out my blush beautifully to give me the understated look that I always go for when it comes to my blush.
The Angled Eyeshadow Brush (set exclusive): (2nd photo above left) Holy moly this brush is so unbelievable soft & fluffy. It’s a very easy brush to work with in that it provides plenty of movement for blending but I would say that for those with smaller eyelids, this may be a little more difficult to work with. I love using this to apply my dark, outer corner shade.
The Base Shadow Brush: (2nd photo above right) This product does exactly what it says on the tin & more. Again like the brush above its so soft & fluffy. It is the perfect shape & size & has the perfect density to apply your base shadow quickly & effortlessly. It’s also great to help you draw out your crease colour & you can then blend it out too. It can be a really versatile brush if you want it to.

 

Real Techniques Sculpting Brush Set

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Yet another set from real techniques that sucked me in was the Sculpting Brush Set. I love a good contour & a set of brushes that was designed to help me contour & sculpt my face was always going to be a winner! In this set there are 3 brushes but there are only 2 of these that I use almost every day; The Setting Brush (above left) & the Sculpting Brush (above right)

The Setting Brush: This brush was of course designed to add powder to the skin whether it be setting powder or highlight. This brush is the perfect size for setting specific areas of the face & I personally use it to set my under-eye concealer on a daily basis.
The Sculpting Brush: This brush is a super dense, wide brush that is perfect for my contour powder. Because of it’s slanted shape it fits into the hollows of my cheeks easily & because of its density it blends out my contour shade effortlessly. The only thing I want to mention is that because of the thickness of the brush you need to concentrate a little if you want a sharp contour to avoid it going above your cheekbones.

 

Real Techniques Core Collection

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These were the first brushes that I ever bought from Real Techniques & were what started my long love affair with the brand. These brushes are marketed as 4 steps to complete coverage & the set includes 4 brushes of which I’ve included 2; the Buffing Brush (above middle) & the Contour Brush (above right)

The Buffing Brush: This brush is great for applying powder because of it’s slightly flattened top & because of the density. I previous used it with my setting powder to set my foundation however I have recently started using it with my bronzer because the density of the brush picks up a lot of product to give me that bronzed look that I love in the summer. It’s also fantastic for blending out my bronzer so that my skin looks naturally sun-kissed.
The Contour Brush: This little domed brush is my go-to for my powder highlighters. It is the right size for the tops of my cheekbones, picks up enough product & blends the highlighting powder perfectly to give me that seamless, popping highlight that I love. It’s also a small enough size to apply highlight down the centre of the nose.

Real Techniques Expert Face Brush (above left)

There’s a reason why this is Real Techniques #1 best-selling brush – it is a dream for foundation. When it comes to foundation brushes I’m incredibly fussy. I want a brush that doesn’t waste too much product, that isn’t too small, that is dense & soft, that effortlessly blends my foundation & that leaves a beautiful streak-free finish (I’m not asking for much am I!) This brush gives me all of those things. It’s perfect for liquid foundations & it’s the right shape & density to make applying my foundation the effortless task I want it to be while giving me a perfectly flawless finish.

What are your favourite Real Techniques brushes?

 

 

| Review: Sleek Matte Me Lip Creams|

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You all know that I love a good liquid lipstick. I love how effortless & pigmented they are & how well they last throughout the day (if of course they are a good formula.) I bought a couple of the Sleek Matte Me lipsticks a while back & I felt obliged to tell you about my experience with them. Here is my experience:

What Sleek Claim

Sleek describe their Matte Me lip cream as:

‘A matte finish liquid lipstick that glides on in one smooth application, with no need for a second coat. The light as air texture provides you with comfortable wear for hours, that doesn’t cake, flake or dry out, ensuring long lasting colour all day.’

The Shades

The shade selection of these lipsticks is really quite good with 21 shades available including nudes, reds, pinks, purples & brown shades from light to dark. The two colours that I oped for were Birthday Suit & Shabby Chic. 
Birthday Suit is is a nude shade that leans a lot more on the peachy orange side. This is definitely not my favourite colour on me. I have never suited peachy tones because of my cooler toned skin & this just didn’t compliment my skin tone.
Shabby Chic is a mid-toned pink with a lot of purple undertones. It truly is a gorgeous shade that added a lot of warmth & colour to my face. It’s definitely my kind of colour.

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The Formula

This is where these lipsticks seriously let me down. Quite frankly the formula really isn’t great. When first applied they look very pretty. They don’t go on streaky & they’re very pigmented so initially I was impressed. Then they just went south. They dry quickly but once dried they showed up every single line on my lips & they became so dry. I was very aware that the product was on my lips as they weren’t comfortable to wear. When I kept applying lip balm to Shabby Chic I could deal with it because the colour was so nice & it is a slightly (and I mean slightly) better formula but with Birthday Suit there was just no saving it.

Put to the Test

The Eating Test – After I had this product on my lips for about 20 minutes & it was completely dry I ate my breakfast to test how well it held up. Well basically, it didn’t. You know after you’ve had a lip product on for a long time you can get that line half way down your lips where half your lips have lipstick & half don’t? That’s what happened. So it didn’t quite pass the eating test but it wasn’t completely gone either! Just make sure you carry around a mirror for touch-ups!

The Wear Test – So I wore this lipstick for about 3 hours & then I could wear it no longer. It had gone patchy, dry & just didn’t look cute at all so I had to take it off before I left the house. Again, Shabby Chic tends to wear better but Birthday Suit was just a massive no after a few hours.

The Verdict

Generally Sleek are a good brand with a lot going for them when it comes to their products & there are many products of theirs that I really like. (They also don’t test on animals which gets a big YAY from me) However, they really let me down on their Matte Me liquid lipsticks. I wouldn’t purchase any more shades because they’re just too much fuss for me. If a liquid lipstick makes my lips look incredibly dehydrated when in fact they’re not & if it doesn’t wear well, then unfortunately I cannot recommend it. Sorry Sleek but these get a big thumbs down from me!

Have you tried the Matte Me liquid lip creams? What did you think? 

| My Everyday Makeup Routine |

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I don’t know about you guys, but I love to know what other women keep in their everyday makeup bag. It contains the products that we reach for over & over again & that our daily routine doesn’t feel complete with out. So I thought – why not show you what I use every day?

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When I apply my makeup in the morning my goal is always to make my skin look glowy, make my eyes stand out & to make my lips look more defined which is why I tend to reach for the products in this post. While I tend to use quite a few products every day I like my makeup to still look fairly natural so I use them all quite sparingly – minus my setting spray because THE GLOW! So without further ado, let’s get into my every day makeup routine!

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The Foundation | L.A Girl Pro Coverage HD Foundation

I have literally been obsessed with this foundation for the past couple of months. When I look for a foundation I want something that gives me full coverage to cover my freckles without being heavy to avoid causing spots on my easily clogged pores. This foundation provides both of those things. It has a more dewy finish than some of my other foundations which is great for giving my skin a glowy sheen but it will definitely move if it’s not set so make sure to set it with a powder! ( I bought the shade Natural although it’s a little too dark for me so I’ll be opting for a slightly lighter shade when I repurchase.)

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The Concealer | Collection Lasting Finish Concealer

First of all, let’s ignore the worse-for-wear packaging as unfortunately the writing always wears off on this concealer but because the product inside is so good, we’ll let that slide. This has been my holy grail concealer for the longest time & I try to stock up on them when I travel home to N.Ireland. I use the lightest shade (Shade 1 Fair) & it is perfect for brightening up my under-eye without being too light & it covers everything including the dark veining on my eyelids. It’s also lightweight & easy to blend out & isn’t tacky or sticky.

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The Under-Eye Setting Powder | MAC Studio Fix Powder

When I last repurchased this product I accidentally bought the wrong shade (NC20) which turned out to be the perfect shade to set my under eyes & keep them looking bright. This powder is actually a powder foundation but as I prefer to use liquid foundation, I like to use this as a setting powder as it provides extra coverage. It sets my under eyes so well & keeps my concealer in place all day. If you do want to use this as a face powder it’s very mattifying so it will keep oils at bay if you have oily skin.

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The Bronzer | Bourjois Delice de Poudre Bronzing Powder

I cannot finish any makeup look without applying bronzer to my temples & around the outside of my face as it brings life to my face & stops me looking sickly pale. I originally bought this bronzer because of the massive hype around it & honestly, I hate it but because I don’t like wasting products I’ve been working on using it up (which is the only reason it’s in this post.) It is so hard to actually pick the product up on a brush so I end up spending more time than I’d like working my brush in the pan. I also find the shade a bit too orangey for my liking so I definitely won’t be repurchasing this product but it’s mentioned only because of how important bronzer is in my daily face routine!

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The Blush | Makeup Revolution Blush Palette in Hot Spice

I raved about this blush palette in my Top Favourite Blushes post & I’m still obsessed with it. It’s full of gorgeous peachy shades that look beautiful on the cheeks & I’ve found myself reaching for it even more with the arrival of our summer months. The great thing about these blushes is that they are also so pigmented which is why this palette looks almost untouched. This palette is a big favourite of mine & I definitely recommend to anyone!

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The Highlighter | The Balm Mary-Lou Manizer

I’ve mentioned this highlighter in my Best of the Best Highlighters post so I’ll try not to go into too much detail here. Can you see how much of a creature of habit I am? I’m always using the same products! Basically, this is my ride or die highlighter and I am absolutely obsessed with it. It’s a pale gold shade that can be worn on any skin tone & it gives the most gorgeous sheen to the skin than can easily be built up if you love to blind people with your highlight. I really cannot be without this product. Like ever.

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The Brows | FREEDOM Eyebrow Pomade

I bought this product about a year and half ago & I’ve used it everyday since & it’s still going strong as it’s so pigmented that I only need a small amount of product each time! It’s a fantastic dupe for the Anastasia Dip Brow but at only £5 it is only a fraction of the cost. I use the shade Medium Brown & it is a perfect shade for my brows. I like my brows to look as natural as possible rather than being heavily filled-in so I simply use an angled brush, outline my eyebrows very lightly & fill them in with light-handed strokes. It’s a very easy to use product for an even better price!

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The Eyeshadow | Zoeva Smoky Eyeshadow Palette 

I like to change up my everyda0y eye shadows now & again but I’m a creature of habit & I’ve been reaching for this palette the most over the past few months as it is absolutely stunning. The quality of these eye shadows are fantastic as they’re highly pigmented, easily blended & I don’t have any fall out. For my everyday look I like to use brown shadows that make my eyes stand out & that give definition while being fairly natural. To do this I apply:

Relieve The Moon (top left) | All over the lid up to the brow bone
Sweet Smell (top row, 2nd from right) | In the crease & slightly above
Ashes Awake (bottom row, 2nd from right) | In the outer corner
Real Light (Black) | In a thin line along my lash line to thicken appearance of my lashes

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The Lip Liner | MAC Lip Liner in Soar

You can tell how much I love this lip liner by how small it’s gotten – I think it’s almost time I bought a replacement don’t you? This is one of the famous ‘Kylie Jenner’ lip products & for good reason. It’s a stunning mid-tone pinkish brown shade that looks absolutely stunning on the lips. It makes my lips stand out & is the perfect shade against my skin tone. MAC Lip Liners are also very pigmented, easy to work with and last really well throughout the day so even if I’m not reaching for Soar, I’m generally reaching for another shade of MAC Lip Liner.

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The Lipstick | MAC Lipstick in Brave

The perfect for pairing for Soar lip liner is MAC’s lipstick in Brave which is yet another famous ‘Kylie Jenner’ shade. MAC describe Brave as a pink-beige shade with white pearl and it is a satin finish. Satin finishes have always been my favourite MAC lipstick finish as they’re highly pigmented while being moisturising on the lips. Just like Soar it looks beautiful against my skin tone & I think it would look good against almost all skin tones for that matter. When I wear this lipstick with Soar lip liner it’s a killer combo that I just can’t get enough of!

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The Finishing Spray | MAC Fix +

This is one of those MAC products that is raved about time & time again across the world & until I bought this product for the first time a few years back, I didn’t know just how much I needed it in my life. It’s a finishing spray that takes away the powdery look that can be left by your makeup & leaves your makeup looking dewy, glowy & gorgeous. I also sometimes use it under makeup too when I need that extra moisture blast & it makes my foundation glide on. I mentioned that I love my every day makeup to look glowy & this product finishes my makeup & gives me the healthy sheen that I love so much.

 

| Body Image by The Skinny Girl |

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Let’s talk body image. It’s one of those topics that can touch every woman because whether we admit it or not, it has played a big part in our lives growing up. I want to talk about body image from one perspective & one perspective only. It’s the side of body image confidence that we never really hear about because the media has twisted it completely. It’s the side of body image that doesn’t always have a voice & by writing this post I intend to give it a voice – it’s the body image of the ‘skinny’ girl.I hate the word skinny & I always have. For me it has so many negative connotations around it & my insides continue to squirm when I hear it even at the ripe old age of 25, but I’m going to use it for the purpose of this post.

So let me give you a little bit of a background – I’m that skinny girl. I have been very slim my whole life which has a lot to do with a thyroid condition that I was born with (but we’ll not get into that) so I have never been this slim by choice. Now when I say slim I don’t just mean slightly smaller than average – I mean that my legs were minuscule & shockingly tiny. I hated them more than could imagine. Growing up I had serious confidence issues & was so self-conscious about my body. While I am no longer as skinny as I was as a teen, I’m still tiny but I’ve just learnt to accept it & deal with it. But I’ll never forget the things that people called me, the sly comments & the judgemental stares. That is the reason for this blog post – I want to talk about what it’s like to be a skinny girl in today’s society & how harmful it can be.

Now I want to add a little disclaimer here because body image can be a sensitive topic for many: I am in no way undermining those who are overweight or what they go through mentally when it comes to body image. I am simply giving my perspective from someone on the opposite end of the spectrum because it’s something that is rarely talked about.

The media has shaped society’s thinking around weight massively. We’re constantly seeing and reading about celebrities losing & gaining weight featuring unflattering photos & nasty articles. It’s a horrible world & can hurt so many peoples self-esteem. A pattern that you’ll notice if you pay attention, is that according to the media anyone who is too thin MUST have an eating disorder because no one can naturally be that thin. It is this thinking that can be so detrimental to people like me who are naturally  underweight. Throughout my life I had to constantly explain myself when people made comments like ‘you’re so skinny, do you not eat?’, ‘you’re too thin, you need to go eat lots of burgers’ & so on. The problem was that because the media had shaped society in such a way no one could understand that I could possibly be this size if I ate a normal diet.

This is where society is so wrong. As a ‘skinny’ girl I have received as much criticism, as much judgement & as much hurtfulness as someone who is over weight but people struggle to or can’t see or understand that. People assume that we couldn’t possibly understand how a larger person feels but I’ve stood in front of the mirror & cried about how I look, I’ve felt self-conscious in every outfit I tried on and I tried to hide my body because I felt it was ugly. So the reality is that those of us who are very underweight can relate to those who are overweight more than you think.

There has also become an acceptance in society that if someone is too slim, that it’s okay to tell them. You would never go up to an overweight person & say nasty things but if it’s a ‘skinny’ person it’s perfectly fine to do that. I am not saying that overweight people never get horrible comments made at them by lowlifes, I’m just saying that people feel like they have a right to tell someone that they’re too thin because ‘its for their own interest’ or because ‘society says it’s okay’. I’m here to tell you that you have no right to comment on anyone’s weight. Ever.

This may have been a slightly long-winded blog post but I just wanted to create awareness about what you say & how you act towards ‘skinny’ people. We have feelings, we’re sensitive about our size & we feel body issues like anyone else. I didn’t choose to be this size & it’s very, very difficult for me to change it. My challenge to you is that if you don’t already, treat ‘skinny’ people with the same respect as you would anyone else because you have no idea how they feel about themselves. Don’t make comments about their weight. Don’t make them feel inferior, worthless or bad about themselves.  If I ever have a daughter with a similar body shape to mine, I would never want her to feel what I have felt & neither would you.
Basically, be nice & don’t be a dick!

| The Best of Rimmel Lipsticks |

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For many of us who have tried a Rimmel lipstick or two it’s not difficult to see why they’re incredibly popular. In recent years I became obsessed with MAC lipsticks & as a result I don’t tend to purchase many drugstore lipsticks as in many cases the formula just doesn’t compare. However I haven’t stopped buying my Rimmel lipsticks as they are just fantastic & in my opinion offer some of the best drugstore lipsticks on the market. 

Rimmel’s formula is in most cases great, offering high pigmentation & longevity while being non-drying. They also have a large shade range & they tend to release new collections that keep up with the ‘it’ shades of the season. From the long list of Rimmel lipsticks that I’ve tried I have come up with a small list of what I deem to be their best of the best lipsticks. Now this list is in no way exhaustive as there are shades that I haven’t tried from their ever-growing range but out of the many that I have tried – the below list contains the shades that I really loved. 

Lasting Finish Lipstick by Kate Moss

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So let’s start with the Kate Lasting Finish lipsticks. Kate’s collaboration with Rimmel has been incredibly successful & for good reason as she creates beautiful, wearable & unique shades that I am always attracted to.

From this particular range my favourites ended up being the darker, more bold shades not only because of their wearable tones but also because of their long-wearing formula, their moisturising finish & their pigmentation. As I have mentioned in previous posts, I will only reach for a bold lipstick over a nude if it’s easy to wear & hastle free. These lipsticks are perfect for that!

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From left to right: 30, 01, 107

Shade 30 – This lipstick is a beautiful plum-berry shade with pink undertones making it extremely easy to wear for most skin tones. When it comes to these kind of colours I can be incredibly fussy but shade 30 is a great berry shade as it is warm toned & isn’t too vampy. It also leaves a semi-matte moisturising finish that doesn’t need a lip balm underneath & that doesn’t dry out making it a great easy to wear lipstick!

Shade 01 – If you’re looking for a classic pillar box red lipstick, then look no further. Shade 01 couldn’t be a more perfect shade of red & for this reason it will go with all skin tones. Like the previous lipstick, shade 01 also has a semi-matte finish that glides on easily & wears easily throughout the day. It really is beautiful!

Shade 107 – This is an unusual shade of red but one that has been given a lot of love from me. I love a deep red but I find that most have brown undertones which don’t tend to suite my complexion. However shade 107 is a deep red with plum undertones that leans slightly more on the vampy side of red while being incredibly easy to wear. It has more of a matte finish than the previous two lipsticks without being drying. A perfect shade for the autumn & winter months!

Lasting Finish by Kate – Nude Collection 

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Anyone who has followed my blog for a little while will know that I just love a nude lipstick so this collection was one that I got incredibly excited about when I heard about it. Unfortunately for me most of the lipstick shades in this collection weren’t ones that I would wear as they were either too light or too dark but from the shades that I picked, they certainly didn’t let me down.

 

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Top shade: 45 Bottom Shade: 43

Shade 45 – This is a great ‘my lips but better’ lipstick for me. It is a mid toned pink nude with blue undertones & a semi-matte finish. This particular shade isn’t as pigmented as other Rimmel lipsticks but it’s very easy to build up. This is a great ‘throw on’ lipstick that is easy to wear & will go with all makeup looks.

Shade 43 – This is a lighter shade of nude than I would normally reach for but while it is light, it is also wearable & doesn’t give you ‘concealer lips’. 43 is a warm toned beige lipstick with peachy undertones that looks great on my warm skin-toned ladies. This is a great lipstick to wear with a dark smokey eye or I love to pair it with a slightly darker lip liner (Tiramasu by Rimmel to be exact.)

Lasting Finish Lipsticks 

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These are the original Lasting Finish lipsticks & there are many shades available in this range. One thing that I do notice when shopping this range is that there are many metallic shades which I’m just not such a fan of. But the formula, like all Rimmel lipsticks, is creamy & moisturising with great colour pay off.

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Shade 077 Asia – This is the perfect dupe for MAC’s Brave lipstick which is one of my all time favourites (which you can tell from the almost finished bullet.) It is the perfect mid toned warm pink nude with slight blue undertones & is one of the most flattering lipsticks I own. It goes with any kind of makeup look, wears really well & is so moisturising. Out of all the lipsticks I have mentioned in this post, I would recommend this one the most.

I’m always on the hunt for new Rimmel lipsticks that I can fall in love with. What are your favourites?  

 

|Review | The Balm Liquid Lipsticks |

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A couple of years ago liquid lipsticks took the makeup world by storm & I for one love them & I know that a lot of my readers are also avid liquid lipstick wearers. However, the hunt to find the perfect formula can be a difficult one so I thought that I’d write a review of The Balm Meet Matt(e) Hughes Long-Lasting Liquid Lipsticks (yikes that’s a mouthful!)

I wanted to try these particular liquid lipsticks as soon as I saw them as the Mary-Lou Manizer is my all-time favourite highlighter so I thought that The Balm’s other products had to be good too. The particular shades that I’m reviewing come from the Volume 1 gift set which included 6 miniature shades of the Matt(e) Hughes liquid lipsticks & was a fantastic way for me to try the formula in a variety of colours (however they can also be bought individually in full size.) So let’s get into what I thought:

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The Shades
The reason that the Vol.1 gift box jumped out at me was because of the shades. I am a big lover of nude/brownish shades so I felt that I would get a lot of use out of these shades. I was completely right in that regard as I have shown these lipsticks a lot of love since I got my hands on them. The nude shades are the exact kind of nudes that I love – the mid-toned kind that are easy to wear & aren’t so light that they give you the ‘concealer lips’ look that I seriously dislike. Here are the colours swatched on my arm (not very well might I add):

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From left to right: Loyal, Dedicated, Charming, Committed, Sincere, Doting

Loyal : A stunning true red. I wore this to death in the Winter months.
Dedicated : A magenta pink. I never wear these kind of shades but I must say that this particular one is incredibly easy to wear.
Charming : The darkest of the 4 nudes & leans on the brownish/burgundy side.
Committed : A pinkish nude. The perfect ‘my lips but better’ shade.
Sincere: A mid-toned rose nude shade in between Charming & Committed
Doting: A very peach nude. This shade unfortunately doesn’t suit me at all so it has been left unloved.

As you can see the shade range is beautiful although you’ll notice that the shades Charming, Committed & Sincere are really quite similar. While this doesn’t bother me as brownish-nudes are favourite my day-to-day shades, it may bother those who like a wider variety of colours. What surprised me the most was the red shade. I found myself reaching for this over all of my other red lipsticks as it’s just so beautiful!

The Formula
This is the part that really makes or breaks a liquid lipstick. There are too many brands out there that make bad formulas that dry, crack & just don’t look cute. The Balm however, have done an excellent job of the Meet Matt(e) Hughes lipsticks as their formula is one of the best I’ve tried. They smell minty & delicious & they apply effortlessly. They’re also very pigmented as I only applied one stroke for the swatches, they dry quickly & they also have streak free finish. In terms of longevity they also last really well without cracking or going dry & that is what ultimately sold me on the formula. I love a low-maintenance lip product & that is exactly what these are as I didn’t feel the need to apply lip balm throughout the day to stop them drying out. They can be a little difficult to take off at the end of the day but if that means they stay on throughout the day, I’ll deal with that!

The Verdict
I absolutely love these liquid lipsticks and I’ll be purchasing a few of them in full size once they run out. I love the scent, I love the colour range (the full range includes 18 shades!) and I love the formula. When I buy a liquid lipstick I want it to be fuss free & The Balm have done an excellent job. I would recommend these to anyone who loves a liquid lipstick – you won’t be disappointed!

| My Opinion On Popular Beauty Trends |

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As a beauty & fashion blogger I’m always keeping up with the latest trends & that’s just because I’m Googling them – the gift of social media channels such as Instagram is that you’re always in-tune with the latest trends whether you want to be or not. I for one am a sucker for trends so I thought it would make quite a cool post if I talked about my opinion on the latest beauty trends. So here’s a round-up of the trends that I’ve been noticing lately & what I really thought of them: 

Plaited & Wavy Brows
I mean, come on man! What is happening to the beauty world?! If anyone has spied these two trends then I’m sure you almost spat out your drink like I did. Instagram has been known to feature the newest beauty trends but this new brow trend takes the biscuit. For those of you who haven’t had the pleasure of coming across these new brow trends I’ll give you the low down – there’s the plaited eyebrow trend which involves using the power of makeup & illusion to make it look like you have plaited your eyebrows just like you would with your hair. On the other side is the more popular wavy eyebrow trend which involves, yes you guessed it, making your eyebrows look like two waves on your face. For those of you who haven’t came across this new fad then I ask you to please Google them – you’ll be glad that you did. The long and short of it is that I for one will be sticking to normal looking eyebrows without waves & plaits because quite frankly, this is just one Instagram trend too far for me.

Pink Eyeshadow
Any lady who has Instagram or follows beauty vloggers on YouTube will have seen a hell of a lot of pink eye shadow on a whole lot of eye lids as it’s been everywhere for what seems like the longest time. The craze was made even bigger after the beautiful Huda Beauty released her Rose Gold palette which completely blew up the pink eye shadow trend. I personally don’t suit pink eye shadow or perhaps I’m just not that gifted at making it work for me like other ladies can. I also tend to shy away from colours that aren’t in the neutral family because quite frankly I’m just not that daring & I like ‘boring’ colours in every area of my life. But while pink eye shadow isn’t a trend I see myself adopting, I have seen some of my fellow ladies pull off some stunning eye shadow looks that look just beautiful on them. So if you have the balls to put on pink eye shadow & rock it – you go girl!

Blinding highlight
Now I absolutely love a good highlight. It makes my skin come to life, makes me look healthy & brings my makeup look together beautifully. I’ve been an advocate of a good highlight since the age of 17, long before the highlight trend kicked off, but lately with every browse of Instagram I see several photos of ladies with a blinding highlight & in my opinion, it’s just gone too far. Maybe I’m a little old-fashioned with my makeup, but I feel like when a highlight is THAT blinding it just looks overdone & makes the rest of the makeup look heavy. I know that a lot of ladies will be horrified at these words coming out of my mouth but that won’t change my opinion – I love a poppin’ highlight but I don’t want to be blinded by your cheekbones either.

Hella’ Long Stiletto Nails
So this isn’t exactly a new trend as it’s been around for a little while but it’s a big trend so I thought I’d mention it. What girl doesn’t love getting her nails done – there’s nothing better than looking down at your hands & pausing to admire how good they look because your nails are looking fresh! (I say this as I look down at my own hands & spy 3 chipped nails because I didn’t get them done this month – heartbreaking!) When it comes to long stiletto nails & my opinion on them – quite frankly I’m jealous of the ladies who can pull them off. I was born with long, slim fingers and when you add long, pointy nails to that equation it leaves my hands looking rather witchy which, as you can imagine, isn’t my favourite look. I’m not such a fan of stiletto nails that are so long that they add another finger length, but when they’re just the right length – they’re pretty damn cool & I envy those of you who can rock them!

Using Silicone to Blend Foundation
Here’s another trend that has taken the biscuit – silicon foundation blenders. Who decided to take the chicken fillet out of their bra & use it to blend their foundation!? Now I have heard that it is a good tool for blending foundation & I haven’t tried it so I won’t slate what I haven’t tried. But I just don’t see what’s wrong with using a beauty blender or a brush? Why do we need to fix what isn’t broken & bring unusual objects into the mix?

What trends have you noticed lately & what did you think of them?

| Current Beauty Favourites |

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We all love discovering new, amazing products & lately I’ve purchased a few products that quickly made it into my beauty favourites so I just had to share them with you. Here is what I’m loving at the moment: 

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Essence I Love Extreme Volume Mascara

When it comes to mascara I am not the fussiest lady in the world as I am lucky enough to be blessed with super long lashes (thanks mum & dad!) but while I may not need intense lengthening, I do want my mascara to not transfer or crumble, to volumise my lashes, to make them super black & to be easily removed at the end of the day. I’ve got to say that this mascara from Essence does all of those things while being incredibly affordable. I initially bought this mascara in waterproof (the blue tube) but my word; it is THEE most difficult mascara to remove. I don’t know what the hell they put in it to make it near impossible to take off!  I was literally tugging at my eyes to try & get it off & we all know that tugging causing wrinkles & I don’t know about you, but I am not about to give myself wrinkles over a stubborn mascara. However, this non-waterproof version comes off easily at the end of the day & it lengthens & volumises my lashes without clumping, transferring or crumbling. At R60 this affordable mascara is most definitely worth a shot!

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Mac Whirl Lipliner

Recently I’ve been wearing this lip liner more often after having neglecting it for a little while. My favourite way to wear it recently has been on its own with just a little lip balm underneath. It gives a gorgeous natural lip with a slight brown tinge that is so easy to wear with a bunch of different makeup looks. I know that with summer fast approaching that I’ll continue to get a lot of use out of this lip liner as I find that these brownish-nude shades suit me more when I have that tanned summer glow.

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The Body Shop British Rose Fresh Plumping Mask

You guys know that I’m always going on about my dry skin and you’re no doubt bored of hearing about it by now but this mask has been a nice little addition to my skincare routine for dry skin. Recently I’ve been applying this mask to my skin on the days when my skin feels like it needs some dry skin healing. In honesty, I don’t see any difference in regards to plumping my skin but when you’re in your 20s can you really expect your skin to be more plumped when ageing hasn’t kicked in yet? I’m not so sure! I instead like this mask for how delightful it feels on my skin & how delicious it smells. It’s a 10 minute mask so it’s a super quick mask (perfect for ladies who don’t have a lot of time to spare) & it leaves my skin feeling so refreshed & hydrated & I’ve found that it makes moisturiser apply in a much nicer way afterwards. Any mask that makes my skin more hydrated gets a thumbs up from me!

 

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Becca Under Eye Brightening Corrector

I absolutely love this product from Becca! It is a light salmon-pink shade corrector that I use under or over my concealer to brighten up my under-eyes. This product does such a perfect job of giving me that bright-eyed look & who doesn’t love bright under-eyes?! I will say that this corrector has a tacky texture that can crease if not set so I always recommend setting it with powder to avoid this. It also comes with quite the price tag for a corrector but it is so worth it if you’re always trying to perfect that bright & luminous under eye. I’ve even had someone say to me ‘wow you’re so bright-eyed & luminous today’ & when someone says that – you know that this product works!

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L.A Girl Pro Coverage Foundation

I know, I know, I bought into the hype! But when the beauty community is raving about a foundation that is a dupe for the infamous Makeup Forever HD Foundation – I’m obviously going to try it. I’ve been using this foundation every day for almost two months and I’ve got to say I love it. I picked up the shade Natural & while it was a little dark for me over the winter months (nothing a little bronzer on the neck & décolleté can’t fix), with summer coming I’ll be able to wear this shade a lot more easily. Unfortunately their shade range is quite limited so I’ve got to work with what LA Girl give me! This product is so lightweight yet offers a high coverage with a dewy finish. I’ve found that I absolutely must set it with a powder otherwise it will move so it may be a more difficult foundation to wear for all my oily skin girls out there. But for the incredibly affordable price tag that this foundation comes with – it’s an amazing foundation that I’ll continue to keep in my makeup collection.

 

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Nu Skin Polishing Peel

I had previously mentioned this peel in my skincare haul so I’ll try to keep this as short as I can. If you have ever been for a microdermabrasion you know how painful it can be and how raw it can leave your skin. I had to try this product after it claimed to do the exact same thing as a microdermabrasion at home without being as harsh – and I’ve got to say, I love it. I began using it twice per week and after a few weeks I cut that down to just once per week. It’s such a strange product in that you apply it on your skin like a mask, let it dry for about 30 seconds & then you rub your skin in circular motions & watch all the dead skin cells & the crap from your skin fall into the bathroom sink – it’s so oddly satisfying. And holy moly did it leave my skin so soft & smooth! I even had my lovely boyfriend try it out as he loves a good scrub & he loves it & wants one of his own! I’d really recommend this product to anyone who loves their skin to be super soft, exfoliated & free of dead skin & let’s be honest – who doesn’t want that! I’ve been able to offer this product with a 35% discount so if you’d like to get your hands on it, just pop me a message & I’ll hook you up!

What are your current beauty favourites?

| Updated Skincare Regime |

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As you will have all learned by now I am a complete skincare junkie. I am always looking for the next best thing so that my skin can reach it’s full potential. 

You may remember a few months ago I posted my skincare routine. Unfortunately since that post I’ve been forced to change this routine as the natural oils were causing me to break out quite badly. So the search began again for the perfect skincare routine & after hearing about a brand called Nu Skin I did a little shopping & posted it in a skincare haul. I just wanted to give you all a little update on these products & what I think of them. 

Holy moly! I am blown away by Nu Skin & how awesome their products are. Since moving my skincare routine to this brand my skin has never been better, seriously! I have had no break outs at all (even around my time of the month which is a big thing for me!) & my skin looks healthy, glowing & most importantly – hydrated. I have completely cut out all of the previous products I was using (apart from the Simple Toner & face masks which I will use until they’re finished) and now my skincare routine is such a pleasure. I have also since bought a few more products from Nu Skin (coming to the blog soon) & I’ve yet to try a product from them that I don’t love. Unfortunately for my bank account my wish list is just growing longer & longer!

One big thing that I like about Nu Skin is their variety of pricing. Some of their products have high-end prices while they also have a whole host of products at incredibly affordable prices. I did a little research on their more affordable Nutricentials range as I wanted to know if they are full of bad ingredients & that is the reason for their lower prices but I found that they are of no less quality as they are still packed with great ingredients!

Basically, for any lady or gentleman who loves skincare & who is always looking for great brands – try this one. You won’t regret it! I’ve also been able to offer anyone who would like to try any products from Nu Skin a 35% discount on their entire product range so just get in touch with me to take advantage of this!