Thursday, 30 April 2015

Review and Swatches: The Balm Nude'Tude Eyeshadow Palette

Hi Beauties,

YouTube is both a curse and wonder for me, as I find so many amazing brands that I never knew about, and on the other hand I lust after all these brands that I cannot seem to get my hands on (Too Faced *cough*) lol.

So many people have raved about The Balm, so when Retailbox launched this palette, I had to get my hands on it with the Mary Lou-Manizer.

The Balm Nude'Tude Eyeshadow Palette - RetailBox
Burst Studio Makeup Brushes - Burst Studio  *Sponsored Product*

If you're looking for cool toned eyeshadows, this should be right up your alley.  These are all natural earthy colours, and you'll be able to create so many different looks.  From natural day time to full on glam.

PS - Sorry that I photographed dirty brushes ;) I suppose I wanted to show you that I actually use them haha. But seriously, these are the best makeup brushes and they're right up there with Sigma and MAC, and I used these 4 to create the eye look shown here.

I know it's such a cliche to say that a shadow is buttery soft, what other word describes it best?  And that's exactly what these eyeshadows feel like, my fingers just glide over them.  They're all true to the colour in the pan, but as with most eyeshadows in this category, there is some fallout but not too much - and what I mean is that you'll be able to easily swipe away the little bit that has fallen out without ruining the whole look.

This palette has both shimmery and matte eyeshadows, and I like that some of the darker eyeshadows like Silly has a bit of shimmer in it.  Once applied you don't actually see glitter, it just helps create shadow/depth in a look.  Another way to use darker shadows is to create a smokey liner instead of using a pencil or liquid eyeliner, you just spray a bit of Fix+ or another setting spray on an angled brush, dip it into the darker shade and apply as you would a liner.  This is really an awesome method if you're not into a heavy makeup look, shadows looks more wearable and softer - so give it a try if you haven't.

The white colour called Sassy is by far one of my favourite white shimmery shadows!  I love creating a smokey eye, and this is so stunning on the eyelid, with Selfish in the crease and outer corner and then you go full glam and smoke it out with Serious.  It's a stunning look and I love wearing this on a night out or for date nights.

How cool is the names of all the shadows - and you'll notice they all start with an S.  Awesome indeed.

If you're an eyeshadow hoarder like I am, I would highly recommend this, just because you can create a full eye-look with all of these shadows together, but because they're "basic" shadows you can incorporate them with other eye shadows for different looks.  If you're anything like me I'm sure you feel like you can never have enough lol.  

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Tuesday, 28 April 2015

The Body Shop Drops of Youth Eye Concentrate {Review}

Hi Dolls,

I hope you're having a fabulous week so far!

Recently I did a review on The Body Shop Bouncy Mask, and this product is part of the Drops of Youth line.

I've been using this eye cream for about 5 weeks, and I love using this in the morning.  What you do is squeeze the tube at the top (you'll see the curve on the last photo), just one squeeze pumps out enough product to use on both eyes.  The applicator is a roller ball, and it's very soothing on tired and puffy eyes.

I distribute the product between my eyes, and then use the roller ball to soothe my eyes for a bit, and then I'll lightly dab the remaining cream into my eyes.

The product itself is quite thin, so if you're looking for a thick eye cream this is not it.  I can't say I've noticed a big difference yet in terms of turning back the clock as I have with the bouncy mask, but this surely does an amazing job in moisturizing the eye area.  It's particularly good for mornings as it's light enough to wear under makeup.  If your skin around the eye area is very dry, I would recommend that you use this product in conjunction with a moisturizing eye cream, as I found that it doesn't give me enough nourishment when my eyes feel very dry, as I find it at the moment with the season change.

Like I said, I enjoy this product for it's soothing and calming effect on the eye area in the morning, so if you suffer from puffiness or very dark circles you may want to give this a try.  

All in all this is a lovely eye cream and I love the ethics and principles of what this brand stands for.

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Monday, 27 April 2015

MAC Prep & Prime Transparent Finishing Powder

Hi Beauts,

I'm not heavily into the contoured look, but I do love using a lighter concealer as explained here with a slight contour, but not anything like those crazy pics you'll find on pinterest.  I've been wanting the MAC emphasize powder for ages, but MAC South Africa doesn't seem to carry it here, what a shame, as it's such a popular under eye setting powder that helps lift the area.  So I asked the girl at the counter which product she'll recommend instead of emphasize, and she recommended this one.

I had such high hopes for this powder, and I've read quite a few reviews and people rave about this, which has left me baffled because I don't get this product.

Okay let me start from the beginning, this is a very fine translucent powder, which mattifies your skin.  I have some under eye wrinkles and dark circles, and the MAC Pro Longwear covers these perfectly.  I let the product set, and then I used this translucent powder over it - the weirdest thing then happens.  It's as if the powder brings back the dark circles and makes my under eye appear very dry, although I've properly hydrated this before application.  I've tried this all over my face, and since I've always struggled with acne, I do have some scarring and pigmentation left.  Although I use the MAC Studio Fix or Garnier BB cream, I don't go for a caked look so it's still full coverage but you'll still see some skin coming through.  When I use the powder over the completely dried foundation/bb cream, the powder makes any blemishes appear more prominent, it's so weird, it doesn't take away the foundation/bb cream but it's as if it enhances the problems underneath it.

That's why I said it's completely strange, and it seems like no one else have experienced this before. Needless to say, this powder is a complete fail for me, yes, it leaves my skin with a satin finish which feels very smooth, but frankly that doesn't sell it for me, and basically is a complete fail which really is disappointing.  Perhaps this is meant for youthful perfect skin?  I really don't know.  I don't think I've ever found a MAC product I don't like, as I basically love everything they do so this perhaps was long overdue.

I have to mention this brush, it's the Clicks Blusher Brush, and I love their brushes!  I have a big kabuki one, then a powder brush and this one.  The bristles are baby soft and they're so affordable. They've really done a good job on this brush line.

Let me know if you've tried this powder before and what your experience was?

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Sunday, 26 April 2015

Catrice Cosmetics: Individual Lashes

Hi Dolls,

As we're speaking (or writing) haha ;) I'll be soaking up gorgeous sun and wriggling my toes in golden sand - sorry if you're stuck in Jozi - and wanted to share this great find with you.

Catrice Cosmetics available at selected Dischem stores

I have the shortest and sparest lashes ever, seriously, they're practically non-existent.  So when the mood strikes or there's a special occasion I love wearing falsies.  Normally I reach for strip lashes, but these ones are great if you're looking to have fluttery peepers for a few days in a row.  I had these done professionally before, you can just ask for cluster lashes, once when I was still doing sales, I had an appointment before seeing a brand new client.  The girl packed them on so thick that I literally could not keep my eyes open! I'm almost sure that the client thought I'd smoked something before coming in to see them with my droopy eyes and all lol.  So now it's just easier to do it myself.  It takes about half an hour to do both eyes.

I've used the Ardell individual lashes, and would say in terms of the actual lash, there really isn't a difference on quality, but I used the Ardell glue instead of the Catrice one, as it seems like the glue is made for one day wear instead of a couple of days, which is what I wanted.

There are two lengths in the container, medium and long.  I didn't want to go for a cat eye look, instead more of an open doll eyed look, so I used the long lashes right in the middle of my eye, and then 2 on the outer corner, and then filled the rest in with the medium length.  Honestly, I don't find applying these lashes difficult at all, I feel if you're able to do strip lashes, you should be able to do these comfortably.

Take a mirror, with a pair of tweezers, look downwards into the mirror and apply - this way you'll also be able to see any gaps and then fill them in.  These lashes look really beautiful, you can see in the pic I have no eye makeup on (nor brows eeppp), and it just gives me this full look.

I love doing this when I go on holiday too, then I don't have to worry about eye makeup at all!  Depending on how you take care of them, they should last you a few days, you will see that one or so will fall out, but you can just replace them, easy peasy.

Avoid rubbing your eyes (obviously), which is a good thing for me as I am a big eye rubber and I know it's terrible for eye wrinkles, I just can't help it though, it feels so nice to rub my eyes especially after I've woken up.  Avoid oily products around the eye area as it will remove the lashes.

I had these on for about 3 days then I removed them, you can use any oily product or vaseline, apply generous amounts and gently massage into the lashes to remove the glue.  I wish I'm able to go longer, but seriously, my hands just itch to give my eyes a good ole'rub down.  That's why I won't easily waste time on lash extensions because I know I'll cave in soon enough haha.

Have a FAB & Blessed day!

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Saturday, 25 April 2015

Physicians Formula: Shimmer Strips All in 1 Custom Nude Palette for Face & Eyes

Hi Pretties,

Physicians Formula did such an amazing job with the packaging on this product, it's so girly and beautiful, the lace detailing and bow is just fabulous.  High five on that one guys!

Physicians Formula is available exclusively at Dischem Stores

This has got to be one of the most versatile products I have, and that I've used in multiple ways and love them all - which doesn't happen often.

At the back of this product, they have a mini guide of the different ways you can use it, which is so helpful.

The little bricks are really stunning, the colours are right up my alley.  All of them have a shimmer/glow to them, when I say it's beautiful it honestly is!  I've used these as eyeshadow, which looks really beautiful and glowy, you can do a natural eye or even a smokey one.  Also use them on your inner corner to make your eyes pop.

My favourite way is to wear this as a bronzer/blusher and highlighter all in one, I just mix all of the colours, then dab it on my cheeks as I do with my normal blusher (I don't apply this on top of my cheeks but closer to where my cheekbone is located so it gives the illusion of model-like cheekbones), and it's so gorgeous!  I don't even bother with contour or a separate highlighter when I do this, so it's great if you're looking for a product to save some time and money on.

You can also use this as a highlighter with the first 2 rows if you're into champagne/pinky highlighters, or include the 3rd row if you're into more of a bronzy look.

I don't own a lot of their products as I find them on the more expensive side of drugstore pricing, but I may have to look into more of their products since this has been such an amazing find.

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Thursday, 23 April 2015

Pamper Favourites: Dirty Works {Face Scrub and Moisture Mask}

Hi Dolls,

I hope you're well?!

So last year I discovered this brand by total accident, and I've repurchased it several times, sometimes I wonder why it takes me so long to blog about old but firm faves?!  In fact, even my husband is a massive fan of the face scrub, I have to keep an eye on him ;)

Dirty Works Pore-Fect Face Scrub / Rose & Glow Moisture Mask available 
exclusively at Clicks

You may have noticed a trend on my blog, that I'm all about affordable beauty! Not saying expensive doesn't work, but budget buys can be just as effective, like these 2 products.  And I'm totally down with their packaging! So cute and girly!

Let me start with the scrub first, it contains very fine exfoliating beads with a slight menthol fragrance. You only need a little bit of this as it's quite powerful, just massage into damp skin where it creates a bit of foam, and it will revitalize and smoothen out your skin.  It's bursting with fruit extracts and your skin will tingle slightly. My skin which is sensitive handles this very well.  

The moisture mask contains rose and vitamin E, it's packed with ingredients to boost skin moisture and radiance.  It's also a must have in your anti-ageing regime as it contains Hyaluronic Acid which exists naturally in the skin to retain water, but as we grow older levels in the skin fall which then creates wrinkles.  You only need to leave this on for about 5 minutes, your skin will have a slight burning sensation but only for a couple of seconds.

Using these two products together will give you smooth, moisturized and glowy skin - highly recommend them!

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Monday, 20 April 2015

Beauty Roundup ft. Garnier, Revlon & Almay

Hi Lovely Friends,

I hope you had a great weekend?!

I've decided to start a roundup series for all mini product reviews/introductions, instead of doing a gazillion reviews, I'll select which ones I think you'll enjoy the best.

So the first beauty roundup (it's more beautiful things instead of just beauty), features some exciting new products.

iPad Air Forever New Cover
My hubby recently surprised me with an iPad, I've worked on my Sony Vaio for years and it started giving me problems, plus, it's way more convenient to blog on an iPad. Anyway, I got this pretty cover from Forever New for R195 - what a bargain. It's a gorgeous coral-pink and the inside is creamy white with gold polka dots.

Garnier Fresh Radiance Boosting Scrub Wake me Up
Although I love the Placecol scrub I wrote about here for a quick scrub down this is a firm fave! Sometimes I have quite a bumpy nose due to whiteheads, it's not cute at all, a quick scrub with this leaves me with baby smooth skin.  It's suitable for sensitive skin and smells INCREDIBLE, like zesty orange (the refreshing kind).

Revlon Photoready Eye Art (Lid, Line & Lash)
I was so excited to give this a try! I looooove shimmer, and don't listen to people that tell you shimmer is not for people over 30 - you don't need that negativity in your life ;) but seriously, don't turn into and old fartsy girl. Rules are meant to be broken, so....this products has 2 ends.  1 End is the shadow, which is creamy and has a slight shimmer to it.  It doesn't crease and is very pigmented, looks the same colour as in the tube.  The other end is the glitter, you can use this all over the creamy eyeshadow, as a liner or over another eyeshadow.  I wore the Fuchsia Flash on Sunday and paired it with MAC Sable in the crease, and it looks stunning!
* Sponsored Product *

Almay Longwear Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover Pads
My mom told me these are really great, so I tried it out myself and it works like a charm.  I use a pad on each eye and let it sit for a bit so the product seeps in, it has a oily texture and it comes with 80 pads. It removes makeup in a jiffy, so this is one of those products that will be a staple for me.
* Sponsored Product *

Revlon Photoready Kajal Eye Pencil
These pencils are buttery soft! It glides on, and it's so important to use pencils like these as they don't tug on the delicate eye area.  Plus, they smudge so easily which is what the sponge tip on the other side is for.  You van do a smokey eye on the top and make it a wearable daytime look by smudging it out.  I always do it with my bottom liner as I don't want harsh lines.  The grey colour called Matte Charcoal (btw these are totally matte no gloss!) is such a great alternative to black, it's not as harsh, and the green colour called Matte Marine will look fabulous on the bottom line paired with a brown/taupe/bronze/golden eyelid, this is the easiest way to incorporate colour in your makeup look.
* Sponsored Product *

Hope you find some new products to try out!

Have an amazing week!  We're off to Umhlanga this week for some beach time to catch the last bit of needless to say we'll be counting the days this week!

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Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Different Top Knot Buns using FrontRow Extensions

Hi Dolls,

Hope you're having an amazing day?

I recently collaborated with FrontRow on creating fabulous hairstyles with their luxury clip-in-extensions. You can read all about the extensions and brand on the post I've linked.  Obviously one of the things I enjoy doing is playing around with different styles, and one of my go-to hairstyles is a top knot.  I've done this so many years, way before it became popular on YouTube, I remember it being one of my go-to styles when I lived in the UK, and that was in 2002.

This isn't a tutorial and apologies for the shoddy photo quality on some of them, but I am most certainly going to post these tutorials on FrontRow soon, so keep a look out for it if you want to see how I created these:

These extensions blend in perfectly with my A-Line bob, you cannot even see the clips, and they're so strong so you don't have to worry about them sliding out or anything.  I just used a sock-bun for these buns and voila.  I love wearing dangly earrings or pretty studs with these type of hairstyles, they're so easy but chic and beautiful, and you can add so many different accessories to make it look different everyday - hairbands, clips etc.

Hope you liked it!

Sending tons of blessings your way xo

** Sponsored Product**
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Monday, 13 April 2015

Must Have Beauty Item *MAC Pro Longwear Concealer*

Hi Dolls,

Hope you had a fabulous weekend? I did my seasonal wardrobe change from summer to winter - that is such hard work right? Phewwww.  I store my clothes in those Vacu-Pac bags from Makro, it saves so much space, and then the rest of the clothes that I don't want anymore I've put in bags for a charity to collect.  I am officially ready for fall :-)

MAC Pro Longwear Concealer R269.00 

I never used to have under eye bags or circles, although I do get enough sleep, mine has become more prominent in recent years and I'm not sure what causes it.

To cover this and give me a fresh and wide eye look, I've tried so many Concealers but they've mostly failed to give me exactly what I want, but this one delivers 100%!

This concealer is full coverage, and I know some women with severe acne use it as a foundation.  My MAC shade is NW20, so I take the same concealer shade, however, the concealer is about a shade lighter than the foundation which I love as it's perfect to highlight the under eye area.  I do a v-shape and this is the only area I highlight on my face, I may slightly dab the excess product into the t-shape but nothing dramatic or obvious.

One pump is enough to cover the under eye, and I dab it in with a damp beauty blender.  It covers any imperfections completely!

I don't set my under eye concealer with powder, I've tried it various methods and with different powders, and it always ends up looking dry, cakey or as if the powder has removed concealer pigment - is anyone else the same cause I feel like people say they have to powder?  So I much prefer without powder.  My under eye area still creases a little bit, but nothing major or where it looks bad, the concealer dries relatively quickly and has a semi-matte finish.  It's just one of those things that we have to accept, no matter what the brand says, no concealer will ever be 100% creaseless, not even on 18 year old skin.

And the good thing about not setting your concealer, is that you can if you want, lightly pat the creases during the day to smoothen it out, but honestly I don't even bother with it.

This is by far the best concealer I've used, it lasts a couple of months so is absolutely worth the price tag (and remember that MAC has their recycling program where you take 6 empty containers for a free lipstick of your choice).

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