Wednesday, 22 June 2016

New Brow Collection from Benefit Cosmetics

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I remember a time when 'doing your brows' was a menial task that took all of 30 seconds. It may have involved a quick comb through with a spoolie and a few sketches with a brow pencil, if you were lucky! Now however, there are brow bars and products galore dedicated to those two, expression-giving features on our face. It is fair to say that Benefit Cosmetics have been at the forefront of brow grooming since 1976, when founders Jean and Jane Ford opened the first boutique in San Francisco and three years ago the brand embarked on a bold brow mission. Their mission was to create a collection that magically solved each and every brow dilemma that us gals face...whether that be skimpy brows, patchy brows, unruly brows or barely there brows. This new collection of brow-loving products would contain high-performing formulas, custom-designed applicators and mistake-proof shades to ensure our brows were groomed to perfection.

Fast forward three years and Benefit Cosmetics, the eyebrow experts, are proud to launch their extensive 13 product brow range, which offers us everything we could possibly need in our makeup arsenal from pencils, gels, primers and tweezers. It really is like a magician's box of tricks...for the brows! So let's take a look at each new or rebranded product to help guide you through these hefty new collection!
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Gimme Brow (£18.50) - This award-wining fibre gel is now available in three shades and has a custom, tiny tapered brush which adds volume to your brows whilst taming and tinting at the same time. The brush-on gel contains tiny microfibres that adhere to the skin and hairs creating a fullness and definition that remains natural-looking.
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Ka-Brow! (£18.50) - Available in six shades, this new product is a cream-gel brow colour that comes with a fine brush for precision application. The rich, wearable colour is brushed on to fill, sculpt and define brows and is totally buildable so is perfect for a natural finish or a more dramatic, perfected look. The cream gel is waterproof and long-lasting so shouldn't budge throughout the day.
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All-Purpose Sharpener (£4) - Does exactly what it says on the tin box! A universal, dual-chamber pencil sharpener to keep your brow pencils pointed for precision.
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3D Browtones (£18.50) - Available in two shades, light/medium and medium/dark, this revolutionary new product adds subtle brow-enhancing highlights to your brows. The highlighting gel transforms dull and flat brows by giving them a subtle highlight and contrast. Lighter brows can appear naturally darker, and heavy, dark brows can be softly lightened. The custom brush has a comb tip to fit the narrowest part of the brow and the spiral bristles provide mess-proof application.
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Grooming Tweezers & Brush (£15.50) - These tweezers have diamond-dust coated tips for superior grip when tweezering those stubborn little hairs and the custom bristle brush expertly grooms brows back into place.
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High Brow & High Brow Glow Pencils (£17.50 each) - These pencils instantly highlight under your now perfectly groomed eyebrows to brighten and boost the eye area. High Brow delivers a linen pink, natural-looking finish whereas High Brow Glow gives us a champagne pink pop for eye-opening wow. They can be used along the brow arch or in the corner of your eye for a highlighted finish. The formula is beautifully creamy and blendable.
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Precisely, My Brow Pencil (£18.50) - This ultra-fine brow defining pencil is available in a fabulous six shades and seamlessly fills in the blanks with natural-looking, hair-like strokes to fill and define brows. The twist-up, non-sharpen tip delivers a rich ,smudge-free colour which can then be finished off with a quick brush through with the spoolie at the other end.
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Goof Proof Brow Pencil (£18.50) - Available in six shades, this is a super-easy, brow-filling and shaping pencil with a custom 'goof proof' tip that easily fills and defines. The soft, glide on colour is waterproof and long-wearing and instantly fills out sparse looking brows. The wide tip fills whilst the pointed end defines the tail of your brow. The spoolie at the other end ensures the colour is combed through evenly for a natural finish.
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Brow Zings (£24.50) - This is the ultimate taming and shaping kit for your brows including everything you need to groom your brows. With six shades to choose from, this kit includes a perfectly paired wax and powder, custom extendable dual-ended brush and some mini slant tweezers. The soft pigmented wax helps shape and define before using the powder to fill and set your brows for 12 hours wear.
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Browvo! Conditioning Primer (£21.50) - A nutrient-rich primer for fuller-looking brows. This conditioning primer works in two ways; firstly by conditioning brows to appear fuller, thicker and healthier (can also be worn overnight so it works its magic as you sleep!) and secondly as a primer to wear under brow makeup to enhance colour and extend wear. The nutrient-rich formula contains keratin and soy proteins and is a clear gel to suit all brows. The soft-touch applicator evenly coats brow hair and skin, simply click once and glide over your brows.
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Ready, Set, Brow! (£24.50) - This is an invisible shaping and setting gel that holds unruly brow hairs in place and locks on your brow makeup so they don't budge during the day. It has 24 hour staying power and has a flexible, flake-free formula that dries pretty much instantly. The custom-moulded wand has short bristles to sculpt and shape hairs into place and a precision tip to define the tail end of your brows.
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Angled Brow Brush & Spoolie (£15.50) - A dual-ended brush for expert brow definition. The hard-angle brush creates precise definition whilst the custom spoolie shapes and blends your brow makeup seamlessly.
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This new collection is pretty impressive - mainly because of the great shade range it offers with each product. Benefit also have conjured up a handy table to help you choose the right product number to match your brows. I also love the sleek yet fun silver packaging with a magical theme attached to range.

This new brow collection will be available online and on counters from this Friday 24th June 2016!
*this post contains samples gifted for review purposes
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Monday, 20 June 2016

YSL Rouge Pur Couture The Mats Lipsticks

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The matte lipstick trend seems to be stronger than ever at the moment so it is no surprise that Yves Saint Laurent Beaute have recently extended their current, eight piece Rouge Pur Couture The Mats collection with five new rebellious shades to dress the lips in a rock matte finish. The Rouge Pur Couture The Mats collection from YSL Beaute offer up the best of both worlds - a cool matte finish, a leather-like texture but with a comfortable, smooth application and a non-drying staying power. The colour pay off is intense and highly pigmented for an edgy look but the sleek bullet of the lipstick allow you to apply and line your lips perfectly for a polished finish.

The five new shades are (from top to bottom):
No.214 Wood On Fire (a rock red powered by adrenaline)
No.215 Lust for Pink (a cool fuchsia to stand out in the crowd)
No.216 Red Clash (an earthy red to put lips centre stage)
No.217 Nude Trouble (a hot-blooded riff on terracotta)
No.218 Coral Remix (a toughened-up red, pierced with orange)

After playing about and applying these lipsticks I can confirm they are matte, but not crazily matte like some of the liquid matte lipsticks that are all the rage at the minute! They still have a slight sheen to them and a smoothness on the lips which I quite like. The five new colours are strong but not too bright (except Lust for Pink maybe) so ideal if you don't want to be too daring with your lip colour this Summer but still like something that stands out. The quality and lasting power of these golden beauties is brilliant, as you would imagine from YSL, and I am tempted to check out the rest of The Mats collection next time I am passing by my local counter.

These five new shades, along with the existing The Mats collection, are available online (£26 each). Which one would you pick?
*this post contains samples gifted for review purposes
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Tuesday, 7 June 2016

toTs by smarTrike Infinity Changing Bag

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toTs by smarTrike Infinity Purple Changing Bag (£64.99)
toTs by smarTrike Joy Bunny Comforter (£9.99)
toTs by smarTrike Joy Bunny Hodded Towel (£14.99)

Gone are the days when I use to crush over the latest Mulberry bag (ok ok, I still find myself browsing their site during those 3am night feeds) but now my attention has turned to bags for the baby and who knew the world of changing bags was such a hot market?? Never did I imagine I would be getting excited over a holdall to carry spare nappies and wet wipes around in...but ever since Florence has arrived, crushing over the latest changing bag is my new thing!

My latest love comes from toTs, an innovative and chic category from the award-winning brand smarTrike. Their range of premium changing bags really caught my eye, mainly because they weren't your standard, sling-it-over-your-soulder type bag but were a rucksack style that can also be worn on one shoulder or attached to your pram. This bag is ideal if, like me, you are a real mum-about-town who is always popping out and about with your babe and pushchair and need something that will be easy to carry. Now I haven't worn a rucksack since I was a fresh-faced year 7 at high school but I hear they are quite the fashion accessory now...so this makes me a cool mum, yes?

The Infinity Purple Changing Bag is much like your very own Mary Poppins bag! The space, zips and hidden compartments are never-ending and it is ideal for popping in everything you need for you and your little one if heading out for a whole day out, away from home. I feel it is very stylish and oh so practical. It also transitions nicely into a bag all for yourself and perfectly holds a laptop and camera in, ideal if I want to pop out and do some work child-free! The quilted fabric of the Infinity Bag has a water repellent coating so is a top choice when faced with an English summer ahead of us and comes with an additional pouch bag, a padded changing mat, a thermal bottle holder, pushchair straps and insulated pockets either side to store your milk bottles. It literally has everything you could wish for from a changing bag and I love the fact it is so comfortable to wear as a rucksack, leaving me handsfree to push or carry little Florence around.

As well as their fab range of changing bags, toTs by smarTrike also have an excellent range of other adorable baby goodies from swaddle blankets, large muslin cloths, cot bedding to hooded towels and comforters. Now who doesn't love wrapping their sweet baby up in a warm, soft towel straight after a bath and with the toTs' Joy Bunny Hodded Towel, they can look even more precious in the process. I love using this towel with Florence - it is made from 100% soft natural velour cotton so I know she is warm and cosy after splashing around in her bath. Another one of Florence's favourite possessions at the moment is her bunny comforter and her new friend, named Roberta the Rabbit, loves to comes everywhere with us. She is so soft to the touch and Florence loves clinging onto her, mouthing at her cuddly nose, staring at her bright polka dots and holding onto her fiercely as she sleeps. I can see Roberta fast becoming one of those items were daren't leave the house without otherwise there may be tears, and I should probably stock up on a backup Roberta should original Roberta decide to hop off somewhere we can't find her...!

I am so impressed with the whole baby range from toTs by smarTrike and their lovely collection would make ideal baby gifts for you or someone you know who is expecting a little one soon.
*this post has been kindly sponsored by toTs by smarTrike
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Monday, 6 June 2016

The @moomooi by Feel Unique Collection

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Meredith Wing, better known as @moomooi to her social media fans, is one of the most exciting names in Fashion Illustration - working as an artist in residence at Soho House. Her foray into fashion and love for couture is a recurring theme throughout her illustrations and clients such as Cosmopolitan, Tory Burch, Coach and Rebecca Minkoff have all enjoyed Meredith whimsical, sweet and delicate designs.

Her latest collaboration is with Feel Unique and is the most beautiful mixture of beauty, fashion, art and flowers - just a few of our favourites things. Meredith has created an exclusive capsule collection for Summer 2016 featuring an array of covetable accessories, all elaborately decorated with her signature style of whimsical sketches and fabulous florals. The romantic colours of dusty pinks and tranquil blues really makes those every day essentials the prettiest must-have items in your handbag or makeup collection. There is the travel wallet with compact mirror (£9), the kabuki brush (swooning over the mix of rose gold and florals!) (£14), the iPhone case (£10) and makeup bag (£12). Just. so. pretty! Which ones are you going to snap up?

This limited edition collection is out now and available from Feel Unique.

*this post contains samples gifted for review purposes
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