Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Blogging On The Go

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When it comes to technology from my phones, tablet, laptops and music players, I must confess that I have always been an Apple girl. For running my blog I have always found my MacBook perfect for everything blogging-related from editing and uploading my photos to typing up and publishing my posts. And for when I am on the go my iPad is always handy to pop in my handbag to stay up to date with my Bloglovin' feed and for keeping on top of my emails. But to have the flexibility of both a laptop and a tablet to suit every situation and technological need is an exciting prospect which is why I was really keen to try out the new Aspire Switch 10 which is a 2 in 1 tablet and laptop that is incredibly versatile.

The Acer Aspire Switch 10* is compact and ridiculously light so can easily be popped in your bag making blogging, surfing the net or keeping yourself entertained on a long journey so simple. I was a little nervous that the small size might compromise the quality of the display but in fact I was really impressed with how clear and bright the resolution was and made everything look so crisp and engaging, I almost forgot I wasn't using a full sized laptop. The really beauty of this product which sets in apart from your average laptop or tablet is the four modes it can be used; as a regular laptop, detached and used solely as a touchscreen tablet, pivoted to share or flipped into a tent shape to watch your favourites on Netflix or catch up on YouTube. I have found myself using the tablet on its own a lot recently to simply read blogs and scroll my twitter feed whilst keeping an eye on my incoming emails. The home screen can be customised to suit you personally down to every last details - the background colour or picture can be changed and you can mixed up all the icons so you have all your favourites all within clickable distance of each other. The home screen can even be linked up to all your social media platforms and email accounts so you get a handy 'ping' and notification with every new tweet and email received. In terms of blogging, once I had gotten use to the much smaller keyboard size and using Windows again since leaving school, I found it very quick and easy to use and love the fact I can just take this laptop anywhere with me meaning blogging on the move, whilst on holiday or travelling around, is a real possibility. The Acer Aspire Switch 10 has a good storage and memory facility as well so you can enjoy downloading the latest box set on Netflix or that must-read on the Kindle without worrying about running out of space. So a perfect option for snuggling down and watching those Christmas movies on whilst the family are watching the Queen's speech perhaps!

What do you think of these handy 2 in 1 laptops and tablets?
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Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Clinique Nutcracker Suite Collection

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There is nothing that will get you in the festive spirit more than a trip to see The Nutcracker - a beautiful ballet that encapsulates all the magic of Christmas with so much grace, elegance and prettiness in every step, leap and mesmerising spin. Inspired by this classic performance Clinique has released their new The Nutcracker Suite Collection which has been perfectly choreographed and draws inspiration from the characters, costumes and scenery from this much loved ballet.

The Nutcracker Suite Collection* from Clinique offers us two delightful, limited edition palettes which encapsulate the lightness and glittering whites of the ballerinas' tulles mixed with the vivid vibrancy of the velvet fabrics. Each palette, inspired by the two acts of the ballet, include an eyeshadow quad along with a coordinating blush powder shade making them almost as pretty as the sugar plum fairy herself! The Nutcracker Act I palette (£35) is inspired by the 'Waltz of the Snowflakes' and includes a snowflake suite eyeshadow quad made up of soft, delicate pinks and sultry tones along with a sweet Blushing Blush Powder Blush in Plié Pink, all of which I am wearing in the above photo. The Nutracker Act II palette (£35) is exclusively available online and is inspired by the Sugar Plum Fairy. It features four complimentary shades including that lavish plum shadow along with a Blushing blush Powder Blush in Tutu Pink.

I think these palettes are just beautiful and have really captured the essence of this timeless ballet perfectly. For those who don't want to go for a heavy, glitter-ladened eye look this holiday season, these are a sweet alternative for a softer, shimmery look and a pretty, rosy cheek. The addition of the darker shades in each palette though means you can add a bit of definition and sultriness to your look which is great if you want to take your makeup from day to night in an instant.

Are you twirling with joy over these new palettes from Clinique?
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MAC Duty Free Lipstick Purchases

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mac lipstick swatches
Last month Rob and I flew off to Italy to spend a long weekend away with friends nestled high in the Tuscan mountains and enjoyed a few lovely days eating, drinking and keeping warm by the roaring log fire. Whilst killing some time in Stansted airport I innocently wandered into their beauty hall to just have a little peruse and ended up picking up three MAC lip products that had been on my wish list from sometime! Always the way, eh?!

The first lipstick I ticked off my list was Lovelorn (top photo) which is a wonderfully wearable pink shade with slight blue undertone and a lustre finish, giving the lips a gorgeous glossy finish without being too sticky. It is a very natural, soft pink and a little similar to MAC's Creme Cup but just with a shiny, gloss-like texture on the lips. It is a very easy, fuss-free lipstick to use and would work best paired with a heavier eye look and maybe some beautifully bronzed cheekbones.

Secondly I picked up MAC's Faux lipstick (middle photo) which is one of my most recent coveted items since the whole Kylie-Jenner-lip-thing has swept the beauty world. Rumour has it that Kylie often reaches for Faux lipstick alongside other MAC faithfuls such as Velvet Teddy and Brave, so I decided to give it a whirl myself and I am so glad I did! I really do love this lipstick which is probably one of the 'darkest' nudes I have ever tried. Faux is a pinky-brown shade with a lovely Satin finish on the lips, making it a perfect day to day colour to wear with a creamy consistency and good colour payoff. It is literally the only lipstick I am reaching for at the minute!

And finally, to continue with the Kylie Jenner theme, I picked up a new lip pencil in Subculture, (bottom photo) seeing as Soar and Whirl are still so damn hard to track down! MAC Subculture lip pencil is described as an underground pink but really is an earthy-brown with a slight pinky-peach undertone to it. As you would expect from a lip pencil, it is incredible matte and would benefit from a slick of gloss or lip balm on top if you are planning on filling your whole lip in. But it is a great product if you want to line your lips in preparation for a similar lipstick like Velvet Teddy perhaps to be layered on top or simply to wear alone for a pretty nude look.

All these lip products are available from MAC counters and of course, online. Which lipsticks are on your current wishlist?
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Sunday, 14 December 2014

Zoeva Rose Gold Complete Eye Brush Set and Eyeshadow Palettes

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There is something about rose gold that just makes everything look so...perfect! Rose gold makes everything instantly desirable and I often find myself coveting absolutely anything and everything that has that gorgeous golden-pink hue. So it is little wonder that my heart skipped a beat when this set of Zoeva Rose Golden Eye Brushes* arrived and I unzipped the beautiful sleek clutch to reveal a 12 piece eye brush set all brilliantly glimmering with a rose golden shine. Heaven! I get a bit excited over makeup brushes and feel that you can never have too many, especially eye brushes, and this set is the perfect compilation to blend, line, define and conceal your eyes. It literally has every brush you could wish for including a brush to fill your brows in and blend in your under eye concealer. As well as looking incredibly pretty they are actually pretty fantastic brushes - so soft and easy to use. Available for around £55 from Love Make Up and Zoeva online, they would certainly be a wonderful gift to find under the Christmas tree this year.

As well as their gorgeous eye and face makeup brushes, Zoeva also have a selection of eyeshadow palettes which offer a complimentary range of highly-pigmented eyeshadows all housed within a perfectly-portable palette which is light and easy to pop in your makeup bag when travelling or heading from your desk to the dance floor this Christmas. I have been testing out two of their eyeshadow palettes recently, the Mixed Metals palette* and the Smoky palette* which both offer ten luxuriously formulated shadows that are easy to apply and blend for a natural or more glamorous eye look. Both include a mixture of matte, metallic and pearl finishes for a variety of different looks and intensities. My favourite palette is the Mixed Metals palette which contains an assortment of shimmery hues that are perfect to highlight and define your eyes. Above I used Warm Silver all over my eyelid and then blended Rusty Steel through the crease. I then used a sweep of Copper Plate (which is a great dupe for MAC's Cranberry FYI) to warm the look. Under my eye I used a touch of Alloy and ran this through my lower lash line to define the look. With lashings of Bourjois' Volume 1 Seconde mascara and I am good to go!

Have you tried anything from Zoeva?
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Bourjois Volume 1 Seconde Ultra Black Mascara & Express Eye Makeup Remover

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As I start to reflect on this year's beauty launches and which products have really impressed me, I feel I need to mention one of my favourite new mascara launches of the year; Bourjois' Volume 1 Seconde mascara which I blogged about here back in April. Since then it has been one of those faithful eye products I always find myself reaching for when I want instant volume, length and separation with no clumping or dryness. This Christmas Bourjois has released an update version of this fantastic mascara in Ultra Black to give your lashes a blacker than black appearance for up to 16 hours, ideal for taking you from desk to dance floor! A mixture of Bourjois' ultra volumising and long-lasting formula along with its patented brush which features wraparound spherical bristles, this mascara promises to give you captivating and hypnotic eyelashes in a flash! The chunky wand really grabs each lash and coats them with a super-rich, highly pigmented inky black colour and can be built up for a super glamorous flutter! The brush is expertly designed to capture and define every eyelash and fan them out for a dramatic finish perfect for the party season. Bourjois' Volume 1 Seconde Ultra Black Mascara* is available from Boots for a purse-friendly price of just £9.99.

And to remove my makeup at the end of a long night dancing at the Christmas party? I've been using Bourjois' Express Eye Makeup Remover* which is ideal for waterproof mascara and removes stubborn makeup and glitter in a flash! It has a non-oily formulation and is quite similar to one of my favourite (and pricier) makeup removers, the Clarins Instant Eye Makeup Remover, in both colour and performance! This remover has a two-phase formula which needs to be shaken together before using. The first, darker blue layer, contains oils concentrated with cleansing agents to remove all makeup effortlessly, even that waterproof mascara. The second, lighter blue layer, is the water phase to leave the skin fresh and clear and free of any greasiness. The formula has been tested to protect the lashes, the delicate skin of the eyelids and the fragile area around the eyes and does a great job at removing your makeup thoroughly without irritating the skin. I always forget that Bourjois offer a handful of skincare and shower products so I would definitely suggest checking them out next time you are in Boots or perusing Amazon online.
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Saturday, 13 December 2014

Topshop Ceramic Lip Liner and Naturist Lipstick

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topshop ceramic naturist lip
With Kylie Jenner's lips being the hottest beauty trend of the moment and her go-to lip products being  the hot topic on everyone's lips, it was only going to be a matter of time before I added a few similar lipsticks and liners to my collection to try and emulate that famous pout. Rumour has it that Kylie is a fan of MAC's lip liners in Soar and Spice layered with a slick of MAC's Faux or Brave lipstick, so whilst I am still on the waiting list to pick up Soar liner online I thought I would try and find some more accessible alternatives. I headed to Topshop and picked up a new lip combination comprising of Ceramic lip liner (£5) and Naturist lipstick (£8).

Without a doubt Kylie's trademark pout is definitely more pinky-toned and matte than either of these lip products but I really love the finished look when used together and I have been welcoming the change from my favourite pinks and nude lipsticks which I find myself reaching for most days! Ceramic lip liner has an earthy, brown tone with a very smooth consistency which makes it ideal for lining the lips easily or even filling your whole lip area in for a matte, neutral finish. Naturist lipstick was a real gem to find and is slightly more pink toned than Ceramic and has a satin texture and finish on the lips. It is so pretty and a nice transitional lip product if you want to make the move into wearing a darker lip colour but feel a bit hesitate to whip out the bold browns right away!

What do you think of these two new lip products from Topshop?
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Soap and Glory The Next Big Thing Christmas Gift Set

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The godmother of all Christmas gift sets has landed and, as you would expect, it is a real cracker from Soap and Glory! This year the sugary-pink, sweet-smelling brand that brings us all our bathroom shelf essentials has released a box full of treats worth over £76 for a mere £29, available from Boots stores if you're quick! Soap and Glory's The Next Big Thing Gift Set* presents us with two limited edition gift boxes created by London's queen of doodle, Hattie Stewart, whose quirky comic-book-esque style has made her famous and fits perfectly with the tongue-in-cheek image of Soap and Glory.

Inside the box we have, Hand Dream super cream, Orangeasm body wash, Butter Yourself moisture lotion, Heel Genius foot cream, Sugar Crush body scrub, Whipped Clean shower butter, The Righteous Butter body butter, Off Your Face purifying cloths, Sexy Mother Pucker lip lacquer and Thick & Fast super volume mascara...(and breathe!) This is the perfect seasonal gift for any Soap and Glory lover like me but you better move quickly. It has already sold out online but hopefully you will be able to track a box or two down in your local Boots store. Good luck!

Will you be picking up The Next Big Thing this year?
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