Tuesday, 9 June 2015

NOTD: gold and coral ombre

I adore coral colours, and I love love love coral nails when summer comes around.  My go to coral is Essie's 'Cute as a Button'.  I seem to gravitate toward this colour because it verges more on the pink spectrum than an orange/red one, which I think  makes it much more wearable, and a lot easier to do nail art with.

I wear this colour so often I decided I needed a change.  Taking some inspiration from my purse (a lovely pinkish coral with gold accents) I decided on trying out an ombre.  I'm not too experienced with gradients.  The last time I tried it my fingers were stained blue for days... but with the help of a latex barrier I managed to create a mess free and slightly blingy ombre (that's also a bitch to photograph).

These only took 10 minutes to do and were so much easier than I thought they'd be.  Now I can't wait to try some more gradients out.

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

I'm just not that into you...

Do you ever get a product that is super hyped, to get home and honestly think, meh?  

That's definitely happened to me on more than a few occasions.  I just love trying new stuff, be it makeup skin care, homeware, food.  New things excite me.  But I do like getting an objective view on products that everyone can't seem to get enough of.

Top to bottom, L-R: Laura Geller; Laura Mercier; MAC; Benefit; Benefit

Laura Geller Inkwell Waterproof Gel Liner: I believe this came in a beauty subscription box.  I've tried a few gel liners before and got on okay with them.  I suck big time at winged liner in general, I'll be honest, but usually with a bit of time and patience it's presentable enough.  However this just seemed... clumpy.  It didn't go on smooth AT ALL.  I soooo wanted to like it; it was such a pretty colour and I loved the brush in the lid.  No matter what I couldn't get it looking even on my lids, it was just a bit streaky and sad looking.

Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer: I'm usually a big fan of this brand, but I have a feeling I was matched to the wrong colour.  It's in the shade Nude and I now know there are a couple of lighter colours (I always look more tan in beauty halls when I'm rather ghost-like).  It looks like the right colour as it goes on but withing 5 minutes it turns slightly Oompa Loompa-ish and orange is not a good look on me.  My other problem with this is that after trying it out I came up in a bumpy rash, which doesn't happen too often to me. 

Mac Rapidblack Penultimate Eyeliner: I now understand why this isn't the Ultimate eye liner!  When I first got this I loved it; it was beautifully dark and glided across my lids effortlessly.  After a week of use I started noticing it just wasn't as black as it used to be.  I was going over the same area of my lid four times to get a black-ish line.  It seems to be quite temperamental, as sometimes I'll use it and get that impenetrable black and other  times it'll be streaky again.  This is actually the first MAC liner I've tried, and if it had been my first experience with them it might have put me off, but I'm more than happy to try another of their liners out one of these days.

Benefit The Porefessional: Everyone sings the praises of this and I feel like I'm going really against the grain by disliking this so intently, but I just do not get on with it.  My pores aren't hugely troublesome to begin with, but sometimes across my nose and forehead they'll be a little more on show than I'd like.  I've tried The Porefessional about 10 times now, and each time I've had to completely redo my face.  It either pills (where it comes off in little balls) or goes on fine but leaves my skin feeling and looking so greasy that my makeup just slides right off.  At first I though it might have been the products I was using beforehand reacting with it, so I switched up moisturisers, serums etc. to no avail.  I think my skin just does not like it.

Benefit Roller Lash Mascara:  You might think with two Benefit items in one post that I don't like the brand.  It's actually the opposite, I can't do my makeup without their Stay don't stray primer!  Like many of their mascaras, this product is seriously popular, claiming to be super curling.  I have rather limp lashes and would love a bit of lift in them, and this does that!  my lashes looked like I'd curled them, they were lovely and dark, maybe slightly clumpier than my regular mascara, but looking rather nice... until I looked in the mirror an hour and a half later and noticed black smudges under my eyes.  It looked like I'd been crying.  I wrote it off as a one off and put it down to the heat that day, testing out the mascara on a decidedly colder day when I was inside doing very little.  After 30 minutes I walked by the mirror and caught a glimpse of my panda-esque, only a few minutes after I'd answered the door to the postman.  Such a good look...  Again I think it's something about me and Benefit mascaras as I've tried the BadGal and They're Real and have found they smudge on me too!

Have you found any products that just haven't lived up to the hype?  Maybe next time I'll pull out of my favourites that really are as marvellous as they say on the tin!

Thursday, 30 April 2015

April Empties

I can't believe it's almost May; five months into the year already, where has the year gone...  I've been kept busy with plenty of work, but managed to celebrate a few birthdays in between.  Of course with so many birthdays crammed into the beginning of the year it can leave you a bit low on the cash front, so Ive been making do with the supplies I have stashed under my bed.

And boy have I managed to get through some of my stash

Since I managed to get through so much I'll try and keep it short and sweet...

The Lush stuff

The Twilight shower gel was a limited edition product from, I believe, a year or two back.  The scent is still available in bath bomb form.  I loved the smell of this so much, Lavender, Tonka and Ylang Ylang, that I purposefully saved this as long as possible.  I'm so disappointed it was limited edition as the shower gel scent lingered on the skin far longer than the bath bomb version; if it is released again I'll be purchasing 50 bottles.
Similarly the Snow Fairy shower gel is also limited edition, but gets released every year at Christmas.  I always buy myself a bottle, I just love the sweet scent.  Sweetie Pie is a shower jelly, I think I'm on my third tub.  If you like the Comforter bubble bar then this has the same scent.  Personally I've gone of the jelly formula of late, I end up losing most of it down the drain, so I've been buying the Comforter instead.  The tub of Lemony Flutter has lasted me forever.  It's a cuticle balm and it really is awesome for your nails.  My gripe is I can never get through the whole tub before it goes bad and gets overly sticky!  It seems like such a waste; who'd have thought I'd complain about getting too much product.  I won't be rebuying.

Lotions and potions

I received this Laura Mercier souffle body creme in a subscription box.  It's in an ambre vanille scent, which has  a really warm, natural vanilla smell.  I just didn't find it hydrating enough for me to buy the full size version.  I do love this Burt's Bees milk and honey body lotion.  It's hydrating and absorbs so easily, but I can't say I'm a fan of the scent.  This Green People sun lotion was acquired from another beauty box, I keep this is my handbag for when I'm out.  Being fair I burn quicker than toast, so I usually go for a higher SPF.  It was a handy size to have though.  I'm always pulling out my Soap and Glory Hand Food; I keep a tube of it next to my bed and apply it every evening, after a mani, after washing my hands.  You name it I find a reason to use it, and I already have another tube on the go.  Something I'll definitely be repurchasing at some point is the Yves Rocher Cocoa and Orange Moisturising Hand Cream.  Ugh, the smell of this is just so good, exactly like a Terry's chocolate orange - the only downside to this is it makes me crave chocolate.

Hair Care

The Aussie Take the Heat Conditioner and 1 Minute Miracle Treatment were impulse buys and while they did the job, I do prefer others from the range much better.  I really enjoyed using the Dove Intensive Repair Regenerating Mask.  It left my hair super soft and so much less tangled than normal, once again I have other masks I prefer over this though.  Lastly the Hair Growth Treatment Mask from Lee Stafford, which I adore the smell of.  It's sweet and the scent lingers in the hair, more so when used with the matching shampoo and conditioner.  I don't think it helped my hair grow, but I will probably repurchase when it's on offer, just for the smell.

Facing it

I love using the Natio Gentle Skin Toner.  I repurchased this once but have since found another toner that seems to suit my skin better.  I do think this is quite a good toner if you have dry skin, as it's very gentle.  Another impulse buy was the Origins High Potency Night-a-mins, an impulse buy that I definitely do not regret.  Whenever I used this my skin felt so much plumper in the mornings (I alternated between this and a few others), and far less dry than it would be had I not used it.  As soon as I have the funds I'll be buying another pot online.  It doesn't feel fair of my to judge the Skin&Co Sicilian Light Serum as I only got two uses out of it - I think some must have leaked out.  It had a nice light scent but the two times I gave it a shot my skin felt a little tight, I'd need to try it again to be sure.  I'm a huge fan of The Body Shop Cocoa Butter Beautifying Oil.  Although it says on the bottle it can be used in hair, I always find it a bit too heavy for mine.  Instead I use it on my face and it leaves my skin lovely and glowy and soft. I'm on my second bottle but it lasts absolutely ages.

And the rest

I've had this bottle of Impulse goddess body spray for forever.  I bought it on a hot day many moons ago, and while it does have a pleasant enough scent I tend to lean toward perfumes nowadays.  The Sanctuary Spa Body Scrub was in a Christmas gift - this one has bits of pumice in it which I thought was quite unique.  I do love a good scrub but I didn't find this scrubby enough for my tastes.

I'm so pleased to have used up so many things this month, it's left me with lots more space, for me to purchase more products possibly... I really do need to whittle down some of my stash, so maybe next month I'll be reporting back with an even bigger empties post.

Monday, 15 December 2014

Christmas mix and match

 L-R: glittery red, elf tights, tree texture and fuzzy Santa suit red

As soon as December comes around I'm the first person to don the Santa hat and pop my favourite Christmas tunes on.  But this year I'm a bit late to the festivities.  Normally I'm all over the Christmas nail scene, but I've been under the weather most of the month and doing my nails has been the last thing on my mind.

I finally pulled my act together with some Christmas mix and match nails.  I couldn't decide on just one pattern, but fancied something bright and eye-catching.

We had just finished decorating our tree and I decided to take inspiration from the Christmas decorations hanging around.

I started with a red glitter on my little finger, sadly the camera just wouldn't pick up how lovely a glitter this was, but it was almost identical to the bauble in the second image!  My pointer finger was inspired by an old musical Santa figurine handed down from my great grandma; he has a lovely velvety suit and so I brought out my trusty flocking powders and pressed it over my nail to create a velvety effect.  My middle nail was supposed to be a textured Christmas tree effect, again the camera didn't do this justice.  For this I painted the nail green and pressed a long stranded glitter over it -  up close it really did look like pine needles.  Last, but certainly not least (as these were my favourites in the bunch), are the zigzag 'elf tights' patterned nails.  For these I painted the nails white.  Once dry I placed zigzag stickers over my nails and painted between them, alternating red and green.

If you're not a whiz at nail art or are in a rush (who isn't at this time of year?), using stickers like these are such a great way to create special looking nails without faffing around for hours.

P.s. Apologies for pictures as grainy as a bowl of Weetabix but I was all bundled up and warm on the sofa and couldn't be bothered to reach further than my phone...

Friday, 26 September 2014

First ever post... and fuzzy kiwi nails!

A few days ago I had some flocking powders arrive in my letterbox.  I love the velvet nail look but it was something I was afraid to try when I first saw it making the rounds.  It looked like a messy job and I was certain the powder just wouldn't stay on once I'd washed my hands.

I decided to try a test nail the day I received the powders, and surprisingly it stayed on for about 4 days, so I decided my next painting session would involve the flocking powders somehow... but I wanted something more interesting than just velvet nails.

A few days later I happened to get some fimo fruit slices in the post too, and when I saw the kiwi slices I remembered the odd brown coloured flocking powder that I thought would end up at the bottom of my stash, never to be used.  It turns out that brown colour is a perfect match for kiwi skin and inspiration struck.


I was really pleased with how these turned out; they're quite eye-catching, and definitely unique.  And the best bit is they were really quick and easy to do.  I'm now trying to think up some more inventive ways to use flocking powder...fuzzy peaches maybe?