Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Estée Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipsticks

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Last year, Estée Lauder's new Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipsticks won not just one, but two beauty awards - heralding them the "Best Lipstick" by Cosmopolitan Beauty and "Most Wearable Lip" by the Grazia Beauty Awards, and after giving four of their new shades a whirl I can completely see why. With a premise that the mulit-faceted pigments creates sculpted definition giving your lips shape and a curvaceous finish, the formula of these lipsticks is completely luscious. The texture is smooth and hydrating, giving the lips a rich deposit of colour with a subtle glossy sheen (similar to MAC's Cremesheen formula). In fact these lipsticks even smell like the classic vanilla-scent of your favourite MAC lipstick and have a creamy consistency that practically hugs the lips and lasts well for a good few hours.

Encased in Estée Lauder's iconic navy and gold packaging, the lid to these lipsticks is magnetic giving this product a classy-sounding 'click' everytime you use it. They are so lovely and soft to apply and feel like they are melting onto your lips, leaving them saturated with colour yet completely moisturised too. The four shades I have been sampling are beautiful and very me! Desirable and Potent are both very pretty pink nudes, with Potent being slightly more peach-toned. Powerful is a wonderful fuchsia pink that really adds a pop of colour to your makeup but the star of the show is definitely Defiant Coral which is a unique coral-red with bursting orange undertones. It is seriously stunning!

You can purchase Estée Lauder's Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipsticks* (£24) from Boots or Estée Lauder online, and with a whopping 30 different shades to choose from ranging from nudes, pinks, berries, mauves and plums, there is bound to be a shade to suit you. I certainly fancy picking up some more next time I am passing by a counter and I currently have my eye on Reckless or Thrilling! Which is your favourite shade from the four I have been trying recently?
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Sunday, 25 January 2015

Illamasqua Kitsch Glamore Lipstick

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illamasqua kitsch lipstick
If I had to tell you my all time favourite Illamasqua product I know I would struggle. Their pure pigments are amazing and fun for adding instant glamour and twinkle to your eyes, their skin base foundation is an absolute makeup staple and I love the cream to powder finish of their velvet blushes. But most recently it has all been about Illamasqua's Glamore lipsticks! Remember their dreamy Glamore Nude collection? Or that gorgeous fiery red lipstick created specifically to compliment the iconic Virgin Atlantic pantone red airline uniform? The Glamore lipstick gives you all the vibrancy and intensity of their original lipsticks but with a much more flattering formula that feels silky and moisturising on the lips. The texture is smooth, similar to a MAC satin finish, and gives your lips a plump look with a pretty sheen.

One of the latest lipsticks from this Glamore range I have been hooked on is a new addition called Kitsch* (£18.50, available online) which is described as a "rose pink". The colour is so fun and unique and instantly perks up your makeup when paired with simple, feline flick eyeliner and a lightly bronzed face. This shade is stunning and is a lovely cool toned pink with just a hint of bright lavender-magenta which makes it a real showstopper lipstick for a glam night out!

Have you tried the Illamasqua Glamore lipstick range? Which is your favourite shade?
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Saturday, 24 January 2015

New In: Zoeva Brushes

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With a brush portfolio of over 50 professional tools it would be hard to believe there was any room left to squeeze in some new releases, but Zoeva have welcomed in the New Year with 8 new brushes. Traditionally handmade from wood, six layers of lacquer and a luxuriously shiny brass ferrule, there is something pretty luxe about the new Zoeva brushes and these make the perfect dressing table additions. With their smart silver and black design and the softest of bristles, I have been loving using these new face brushes which have your foundation, concealer, blush and eyeshadow all covered.

From top to bottom, from left to right, we have:
325. Luxe Brow Light which is made from the finest natural-synthetic hair and is the perfect tool to apply highlighter or eyeshadow layered underneath the brow bone.
114. Luxe Face Focus, a flat flame shaped brush which is a handy size to carry around for touch ups and setting makeup with powder under the eye area.
220. Luxe Grand Shader, a luxuriously fluffy shader brush ideal for sweeping on powder shadow all over your eyelid. (This is one of my favourites)
310. Spot Liner which might be tiny but it is mighty. Designed to visually thicken your lash line with gel liner or eyeshadow, it is perfectly formed for adding those finishing details to your makeup.
129. Luxe Fan is a great multifunctional tool that can be used to apply highlighter, blush or bronzer as well as tidying up any eyeshadow fallout after a heavy, smokey eye. It is soft and light so delivers a lovely, natural finish.
109. Face Paint Vegan is a densely packed, unique square edged brush made from vegan talon hairs which can be used to apply liquid and cream products to effortlessly contour and create the illusion of a shadow.
112. Face Curve brush is a soft, versatile tool to apply foundation to all areas of your face. The curved edge adapts to the contours and gives you a flawless base.
107. Powder Polish which could possibly be my favourite from this new launch. A large, luxurious rounded powder foundation brush, this is ideal for professional application of loose or pressed face products. It really does give a polished finish and also is pretty impressive when used with liquid foundation too.

Available from Love Make Up for a reasonable £6 to £14.50, I really rate Zoeva brushes and feel like I have all my brush needs covered with this new selection of tools. Foundation is buffed in flawlessly, eyeshadow is kept quick and simple with a light sweep and blush and bronzer is delivered in a light, natural way. Are you a fan too of the Zoeva brush and makeup range?
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Thursday, 22 January 2015

Benefit Puff Off! Instant Eye Gel

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Suffer from puffy peepers? Need those fine lines ironing out? Well, Benefit Cosmetics have got all your tired eye worries sorted with their newest release, Puff Off! Instant Eye Gel. This makeup-skincare hybrid aims to reduce the look of puffy eyes as well as smoothing away the appearance of fine lines to give your eyes a serious wake up call in the morning.

Benefit Cosmetics Puff Off! Instant Eye Gel* (£22.50) is a satiny-smooth cream gel that is dispensed easily with a slight squeeze of the tube. The novel iron-tip applicator (you can always rely on Benefit for some fun packaging!) literally irons on the gel under the eye area and instantly cools on contact. The peptide blend in the formula reduces the look of puffiness whilst the light-diffusing particles help smooth away the appearance of creases and fine lines. The gel is a delicately-coloured pinky-pearl shade and really adds a lightness and slight highlight under your eyes. Dark circles are instantly disguised! Whether you use the cute iron tip or a fingertip to blend it in, the gel is quickly absorbed and doesn't feel greasy or heavy at all, meaning your morning routine is not delayed and you can apply your makeup straightaway.

This new product really bridges the gap between a skincare and a makeup item and definitely lifts the eye area and makes me look much more awake, even if I am not feeling too perky! As a base for your makeup it almost acts like a primer and makes your Erase Paste glide on nicely and keeps it from sitting in your fine lines or creases. This is the type of product that isn't necessarily an essential but once you start using it, it will seamlessly fall into your everyday routine and is the perfect pick to help say goodnight to tired, puffy eyes.

Will you be eyeing up this new product next time you are at a Benefit counter?
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Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Jo Malone My Wanderlust Collection by Charlotte Stockdale

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Wanderlust n. the impulse to travel. Certain scents have an incredible power to transport you back to a familiar place and take you back to a fond time in your life. They can also be very stimulating and give you the urge to explore and travel somewhere new and exciting and it is with this in mind that Jo Malone have launched their limited edition My Wanderlust Home CollectionInspired by the travels of Jo Malone London's style editor, Charlotte Stockdale, this collection takes us on a journey up the Atlas mountains, along golden Australian beaches and down fragrant Mediterranean hillsides. The scents of dusky Caribbean evenings and verdant green English gardens are all touched on and makes this collection of home scents truly beautiful and inspiring.

This limited edition range consists of:
Box Hedge Square Scents to give any space an instant breath of fresh, leafy air.
Night Jasmine and Oregano Linen Spray & Travel Bag which conjures up the heady scent of a balmy, Mediterranean breeze.
Lime Basil & Mandarin Deluxe Diffuser for a bright, revitalising taste of the Caribbean at dusk.
Acacia & Honey Deluxe Soap which instantly transports you to the golden warmth of Australia and is truly the scent of Summer and finally the gorgeous Cardamon and Moroccan Home Candle* (£42). This sumptuous scent was inspired by Charlotte's travels to the foothills of the Atlas mountains, shooting for British Vogue by a reservoir surrounded by wild roses. The candle's aroma is completely captivating laced with the honeyed spice Moroccan roses and the aromatic cardamon. The base note feels quite earthy and natural but is spiked with the brightness of ginger and florals to give you a light yet opulent fragrance to delight your whole home. It could possibly be one of my favourite scents of the moment from Jo Malone and the fact it is encased in a beautiful, watercolour-inspired holder means you get a pretty brush holder as well at the end of it!

Which home scent products are you excited about from this new collection?
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Clarins Instant Light Lip Comfort Oil

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When I was presented with the Clarins' newest releases from the upcoming Spring collection, my beady eyes instantly made a beeline for this new lip comfort oil. Was it a balm? Was it a gloss? Do I want to put oil on my lips?  The limited edition Instant Light Lip Comfort Oil from Clarins (£18) is the newest edition to their renowned oil heritage, following on from the huge success of Clarins' face and body oils (the blue orchid face treatment oil is a must for parched skin), and continues to prove that potent plant extracts are unequalled at rebalancing the skin.

This new lip oil is rich in active plant ingredients and is just incredible at moisturising and conditioning the lips whilst feeling surprisingly comfortable and wearable when applied. Now I am not the biggest lip gloss fan - I just can't deal with the constant stickiness and the risk of hair-stuck-on-lip dramas, so I was worried that this would feel too gloppy for my liking but I was so wrong. The oil is light and almost melts into your lips, just giving you a subtle sheen and a boost of natural colour. It is basically like a really good, buttery lip balm but with all the added goodness of hazelnut oil, mirabelle and organic jojoba oils which envelope the lips and nourish any dryness. Since the season has turned decidedly more chilly I have been suffering quite a bit from chapped lips so this new product could not have arrived at a more apt time! Whether you wear it alone or layered over a matte lipstick, for example, it is a miracle worker and hasn't left my makeup bag since I started using it. I have shade 01. Honey which is practically clear but enhances your lip colour and has a gorgeously sweet scent. Clarins have also released 02. Raspberry which is available exclusively online and looks very berry beautiful. Once it is back in stock I think I might have to swoop in and make a cheeky purchase...

Do you like the sound of this new lip oil product from Clarins?
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Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Netflix & Mr Selfridge Catch Up Tour - Part 2

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Netflix Mr Selfridge Day 2 - London
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Mixture of my own images and professional photographs by Doug Peters

So here is the second instalment from my whirlwind trip away to the Capital last week with Netflix. If you missed all the details (and dining experiences) from my first post then you can catch up here, but please be warned it may make you a little hungry! So once settled into our hotel rooms we were welcomed downstairs into the Kipling Suite (the very place The Jungle Book was penned no less!) to experience a silent screening before dinner. Dimmed lights, comfy armchairs and the whole of Netflix at our fingertips it gave everyone the chance to catch up on their favourite series or get hooked on something new. I was coaxed into starting Pretty Little Liars and have never looked back!

Morning dawned and after a hearty breakfast we headed out to be greeted by our awaiting carriages for the day - a line up of beautiful vintage cars. The only way to whizz around London and start our panoramic Mr Selfridge tour. Cruising down Regent Street and over to Covent Garden we stopped by Drury Lane Theatre to witness the setting where Mr Selfridge and Ellen Love's affair all began before pulling up outside Mr Selfridge's front door, the very facade used for all the exterior shots during filming. The building was beautiful with so much period detail, it really felt like we had been transported back to the 1910s. A few photos later we back on board and heading over the only place to visit when on a Mr Selfridge catch up tour, the shopping mecca of London, Selfridges! Entering the doors where Mr Selfridge had had his vision all those years ago about making shopping a visual and stimulating experience where the shop floor was his stage and his employees were his actors, really reinforced what an inspirational man he was.

The tour was brought to an entertaining and immersive close at the Savoy where we were honoured with the presence of actor Tom Goodman-Hill, who plays Mr Grove, and the producer of Mr Selfridge who gave us all a real insight into the show and stuck around to be probed for gossip by those hardcore fans! Caryln Franklin, fashion expert of The Clothes Show fame, gave us the rundown of those iconic looks from Mr Selfridge before we were let loose with a wardrobe full of props and a photo booth! Needless to say the evening slowly edged away accompanied by lots of laughter and silliness with feather boas and faux moustaches!

This tour was an absolute blast and I loved every minute of it from seeing the sights of London, hearing the history of the Mr Selfridge story and enjoying plenty of treats along the way. I would love to hear what you are currently catching up with on Netflix or if you are enjoying getting hooked on a new series?
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