Monday, 30 January 2012

January Glossybox

I thought I would throw in my thoughts on Glossybox and beauty boxes in general. I first subscribed to the December Glossybox when I got a voucher code to get the box for half price. I liked it, but I didn’t love it and I decided to wait for the January box before I made up my mind.

Here is what I got this month. 

Eyeko skinny eyeliner powder pink — at first I had no idea what I could do with the colour included, but after a closer look it reminds me of a darker version of Eye Bright by Benefit and I plan on using it in the same way. I like that the eyeliner has a handle so that it should always be easy to use. I have heard about this brand before so I am happy to try it. 

Clarins extra firming day and night creams — these were the odd ones out in the box for me. The card included specifically says that the Valentine’s day box is meant to make you feel extra special… reminding me to use some sort of anti-ageing product does not do that. That being said I have never used Clarins so it will be good to get the chance to try it. 

Fab — the card says this is a body wash, the product says moisturiser so I don’t know what this really is yet! 

Murad hybrid skins perfecting primer (dewy finish) — this I am looking forward to using. It is meant to reduce pores and give skin a “radiant glow”

Although I am happy to try everything out, I expected the Valentine’s day box to have more of a pampering theme or to contain makeup for a Valentines look. I wasn’t wowed at all when I opened this, probably not helped by the hype around it.

All that considered, I have now unsubscribed. I would rather save the £12/month and eventually buy some of the things on my wish list.

What are your thoughts on beauty boxes in general?


Sunday, 29 January 2012

Bella Pierre all over eyes and face kit

As my foundation finally comes to an end it was time to have a new one ready to replace it. Of course the temptation of the Bella Pierre counter meant that I couldn’t just walk away with a new blush but ended up with an entire new kit of products to try.

What I like about the Bella Pierre kits is the option to choose the shades you want rather than what the company decide you should have. So after lots of swatching and advice from the sales assistants, this is what I got in my box.

1 x mineral foundation (cinnamon)
1 x mineral blush (desert rose)
2 x shimmer powders (desire and oasis dew)
1 x makeup base
1 x eyeshadow brush
1 x powder brush
1 x instructional DVD

The eyeshadow base and brushes were non-negogiable. Although combinations of kits do allow you to pick the your brushes too! I haven’t tested out the eyeshadow base yet, but what I liked about it was that it takes some of the shimmer out of the eyeshadows, which is great to have as an option especially when you want a more toned down look.

Bella Pierre now also has pressed versions of the foundation and blushers. I am used to using the loose powder foundation so I opted for the same again but I would have preferred a pressed blush. What I am really pleased to see is that the loose powders now all have sifters so that you can control how much powder is released.

I was strict with myself and opted for colours that weren’t brown! Desire is a beautiful pink/peach/gold that works well as an everyday eyeshadow. The two-dimensional tones of the colour means that it doesn’t need another colour and works really well on its own. Oasis due is a much lighter shade, and will be perfect as a highlight shade.

I have always opted for pressed eyeshadows so it will be interesting to see how I get along with these.

The desert rose blush is probably something I wouldn’t have picked if I was alone but once I had the shade put on I really liked it as an everyday natural blush. It is a lovely light pink shade, again with a hint of gold and reminds me of a better version of Sleeks rose gold, without so much shimmer.

I have already reviewed the foundation in the past, but look out for a review of the rest of the kit. The kit cost £110, but I think this is good value considering the individual cost of the products and how long they last.

Have you tried Bella Pierre, and if so what do you think?


Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Quick review: Body Shop vitamin C facial cleansing polish

I am not really a body shop fan, but after finding an outlet store that offered 40% off when you brought 4 items I thought I might put my prejudice aside and give them another try.

I picked up three items from the vitamin C range, the facial cleansing polish being one of them. They also have a vitamin C microdermabrasion wash but after having a quick feel of the granules they felt too harsh even for me!

The granules in this scrub are much more gentle, which makes this suitable for every day use. I personally like to leave a face scrub to use in the shower, since they are much less messy that way. The scrub combined with the light orange scent meant that this was very refreshing to use in the morning and wake me up.

Overall, I liked this but I didn’t love it. My skin felt clean after use and I didn’t notice any reaction but at the same time I didn’t see any noticeable improvement.


Sunday, 22 January 2012

Nails of the week: Blue magnetism

Just a quick post to show you my nails this week. I picked up the blue magnetism nail polish from Fashionista before Christmas and have only just got round to trying it out.

I have a previous post on how to apply the magnetic polish so this is just a swatch post.

I really like the shade of blue, it is a nice denim shade and I have worn it to work without feeling like it is too flashy. I have noticed in very dim light that the shade can look green! Not a bad thing, just an observation.

When I have applied the magnetic polishes in the past I have tried to be a bit of a perfectionist with the application. This time round I was quick and thoughtless about it and it worked out really well.

As with before 2 days in and it is wearing and chipping, luckily the angle I took the photograph at doesn’t show this! When I do finally get my hands on the Seche Vite top coat this will be one of the first polishes I try it on.


Thursday, 19 January 2012

Beauty products to try in 2012

I decided to do a completely indulgent post filled with my beauty wish list products for 2012. A lot of these things I have lusted over for a while, so I thought I would put them all on page and as the year goes on, who knows, maybe I will treat myself...

Bobby Brown shimmer brick
I have wanted a shimmer brick for about 6 years, the first time I tried it was in my first year at university and have wanted it ever since. The price is what has put me off this time and even though I have tried similar looking products nothing has quite made me forget about this.

Bella Pierre skincare 
I visit the Bella Pierre counter a lot and I always get shown the skincare collection. The toner, exfoliator and primer/moisturiser appeal to me the most and this in a set along with the cleanser costs over £120. I wish they had sample/smaller sizes since I’m sure that would encourage more people to try.

Naked 2
If there was ever a product about want and not need, it is the Naked2. I have the original palette and I use it almost daily so I am sure I would also love this too. 

Paula’s Choice skin perfecting 2% BHA lotion
I have read a few reviews on this now and it is meant to be wonderful for clearing blackheads. The thing that has stopped me ordering is postage costs… I have a serious aversion to them, but there is no other way to get hold of this!

Macadamia nut hair care
I have also read a number of reviews on these, which claim that this is better than argan oil so I would be keen to at least try the oil. I have been told that the shampoo and conditioner are great for curly/thick hair too.

Seche Vite topcoat
This sounds like it would be perfect for me to keep my nails looking chip free all week. I have read lots of rave reviews on this.

Bioderma H2O
Another rave review product, I would love to see if this holds up to all the claims. 

I’m actually think this list is pretty short. I am still on the hunt for the perfect concealer, but don’t have a particular product in mind.

Do let me know if you have tried any of the above, and if you think they are really worth lusting over. 


Monday, 16 January 2012

My HD brow experience

I hate eyebrow maintenance, I have never attempted it myself — I’m too scared of over-plucking — and I’m also really lazy when it comes regular threading.

One morning I suddenly noticed that, apart from being overgrown, one eyebrow was looking more arched than the other and that I naturally have one eyebrow higher. I am not really sure how I have gone this many years without noticing that but I wanted it fixed!

So I decided to book myself in with a local HD brows beautician who comes to your home to perform the treatment.

These were my brows before. I was told I have a good, natural shape and being thick already I should get the right results first time (bonus!).

Step 1 of 7 was eyebrow tinting. I naturally have fair eyebrows, so when asked how dark I wanted them to be — I just asked that they match my hair colour.

The dye was left on for a few minutes before being wiped away and then my brows were waxed, threaded and plucked before finishing the whole treatment off with mineral makeup and using eyebrow powder to fill in the sparse areas.
1. Tint
2. Waxing
3. Threading (see the apprehension in my face not knowing how it is looking)
4+5Trimming and plucking
6+7. Mineral makeup and fill in 
My brows immediately after
I have to admit, being such a dramatic change I wasn’t sure if I liked it at first. I was disappointed that one eyebrow was still higher than the other, I assumed that the treatment would aim to get them as even as possible — but that is probably something I should have made a point of asking for at the beginning of the treatment. Having read around other reviews since having the treatment, it seems others went through more of a consultation step, which I missed. 
My brows with and without being filled in

A few days later and I have got used to them and like them much better. The tinting process means that I can leave the house without filing in my brows at all, and when I have filled them in myself to get the defined look I am able to even them out and make my brows look as level as possible.  

At £25 it is a luxury treatment but I would do it again — not every month, but maybe a few times a year. I think finding the right HD brow technician will be like finding the right hairdresser and I will need to try a few before I find someone who gives me the best result. After the treatment I noticed a few stray hairs and coupled with the unevenness, I would have expected a more flawless finish.

So what do you think? I am probably preaching to the converted here considering how long this treatment has been available for — but would you go HD?


Sunday, 15 January 2012

Quick Naked palette look

With all the blog posts about the Naked2 palette, I had a play with the original palette and decided to quickly share the look.

I used my typical combination of colours — toasted on the lid with buck and darkhorse in the crease.

I decided to experiment with how best to apply and started off using buck in the crease, then using dark horse in the outer corner only. I finally finished off with toasted all over the lid. I think this worked really well to easily blend the colours into one another. Then finished off with eyeliner and mascara.

Also, notice the new brows? Post coming soon...


Saturday, 14 January 2012

Perfume sale shopping

I didn’t bother with the sales this year, I had a quick look online for work shoes and nothing caught my eye and I really didn’t want to battle my way through the crowds.

I did, however, pop into Boots to check out their half price sale. I hoped to get a few of the Christmas sets I had seen but all the good stuff had gone (probably for the best!) What I did find was some perfume box sets…

First up, one of my favourite scents — Emporio Armarni Diamonds. I am rubbish at describing scents, or even knowing what type of scent I typically choose, but Armani typically always seem to produce scents I like. At £24.33 for a 30ml bottle and body lotion, I thought this was a bargain — and considering I am down to my last few squirts, a new bottle was needed.

I also picked up Jean Paul Gaultier - Classique. The bottle to this scent is so iconic and I have had my eye on it for a while for that reason alone. The scent is stronger than what I normal go for but I still really like this. What I can say about the scent is that is lasts much longer than any other perfume I have known, even into the next morning I could smell the scent on my wrists. At £33.33, including a 30ml bottle, shower gel and body lotion, another bargain I think. I also really love the box this was packaged in and plan on keeping it to pull out next year to use as a photo-frame.

I am really enjoying reading sale haul posts, so please do link yours below. I will post up a short post on my favourite perfumes, not that I will be any good at describing! But for any of you who are I would love to know what scent ‘category’ I fall into — up until now finding scents I like has been down to random spray and sniff sessions.


Thursday, 12 January 2012

Quick review: Avon Magix face perfector

After my recent tidy up, I found Avons Magix face perfector — at first glance I assumed it would be a primer but after having a quick look on the website this is meant to be a nanoblur-like product, promising a flawless finish for up to 10 hours and brighter, soften skin.

Having used it for a few weeks, I am a bit ‘meh’ about this. It applies smoothly and has a silicon-like texture and gives a nice matte finish to the skin. I found my makeup applied much more smoothly, which is always a good thing but overall it just didn’t really do anything. It contains SPF 20, which I suppose is a positive, but I am a believer that if you want sun protection, use a separate sun block.

On the positive side, I did notice some reduction in the look of my pore size, but this effect needs quite a lot of product to be applied. I took to adding this in four sections, chin, cheeks, nose and forehead, adding a bit more product each time for the best finish.

Overall, I could quite easily live without this product, my make-up doesn't last any longer but, in fairness, it never claimed that it would and my skin doesn’t look that much improved. I know I didn’t pay the £10 it is retailed for and I certainly don’t think it is worth that much.


Tuesday, 10 January 2012

2011 favourites

So I thought I would do a quick post of my top 11 favourite products of 2011. Very behind on all these new year related posts, but hopefully you’ll excuse me.

1. Clarisonic Pro — how could I start with anything else?! The Clarisonic completely changed the condition of my skin for the better. My skin isn’t perfect but this tool has given me something much better to work with. I couldn’t be without it now.

2. Bella Pierre mineral foundation — I love this foundation. It gives good coverage, doesn’t irritate my skin, and after over a years use have only just repurchased — making it amazing value for money. Although I occassionally try out other foundations, I always come back to this.

3. Urban Decay Naked palette — I do love a nude eye look and this palette is perfect for that. Urban Decay’s eyeshadows are the best in my opinion. It’s taking a lot of will power for me not to order Naked2, I am sure I don’t need it, but since when were makeup purchases about need?! 

4. ELF studio concealer pencil and brush — I use this every day, it suits my skin tone perfectly and also helps to clear up spots and scars.

5. Vivo sunkiss bronzer — This is such a great shade for my skin tone. It isn’t too dark and it isn’t too shimmery, which makes is great to use every day.

6. Benefit Coralista blush — This is my favourite blusher, the peachy-pink shade is really pretty and although it shouldn’t matter for a blush, it smells amazing!

7. Benefit They’re real mascara — I love this mascara, it does exactly what it claims and gives a great false lash effect.

8. ReGen cream — This has come very close to replacing my love of Bio Oil. It is an excellent non-greasy moisturiser, which has helped to clear up spots and scars and as a bonus is much cheaper than BioOil

9. Rimmel nude delight lipstick — I always grab this lipstick when I am in a rush, I know it suits any occasion.

10. Nutrogena spot dots — This is not the easiest product to get hold of, I have only found them in recent years in 99p stores and when I do I tend to clear the stock. They work really well to clear up spots overnight. I have no idea why these are not more popular and readily available.

11. Sleek contour kit —in particular, the highlight. This is my go-to highlight and as much as I have used it I am yet to create a dent in it.

Considering this is the year I expanded my makeup collection, I am looking forward to seeing how these have changed this time next year. I haven’t included many skin care or any haircare products, since nothing really stood out for me last year but with lots of products waiting to be tried and tested, I may have my own little awards ceremony next year.

What were your favourite products? Feel free to post your links below. I would also love your suggestions for skin and hair care to try over the next 12 months.


Sunday, 8 January 2012

Croc effect nails

Another nail effect from Barry M, this time croc effect!

This works slightly differently to the crackle effect polishes. You apply a thin coat of your base colour polish (I chose Barry M’s gold) and after a minute or two — before the polish dries — apply a layer of the croc effect. The polish takes a longer time to crack and cause the effect, approximately 3 minutes. This meant that I actually looked away and got bored of waiting for it and when I looked back it made it that much more of a surprise to see the finished outcome.

In this case my base colour only showed through very subtly, so I would like to try this again with a darker colour underneath and see to look.

I’m not convinced I like it yet, what do you all think?


Wednesday, 4 January 2012

New years eve makeup and nails

Better late than never I hope, but I wanted to share the makeup I wore to bring in the new year. The party we went to was Willy Wonka and the Chocolate factory themed, so I decided to dress and do my makeup all purple. I have read somewhere that it is a fashion faux pas to coordinate your clothes to your makeup colours but, true or not, I like it! 

I had been doing a lot of reading around how to make large/bulging eyes, like mine, look less large and bulging and one tip I came across was to use dark coloured eyeshadows on the lid. So I decided to put this to the test using a deep plum/purple colour all over the lid and using a darker colour in the crease and outer corner. 

I was really pleased with the result, at the same time I read other tips such not bringing the crease colour/darker shadow all along the crease so as not to emphasis the roundness of the eye and wearing black eyeliner in the lower waterline, which I always do anyway!  

Primer potion — Urban Decay
Milk — NYX jumbo eye pencil
Sultry — Fashionista cosmetics e/s (all over lid)
AC/DC — Urban Decay e/s (outer corner, crease, lower lash line)
Perversion — Urban Decay e/s (outer corner)
Bella — Fashionista cosmetics e/s (highlight)

Bella Pierre mineral foundation (cinnamon)
ELF studio concealer (light)
ELF brow kit (medium)
Benefit Bella Bamba blush
Sleek contour kit (light)
Rimmel Birthday suit lipstick

On my nails I wore, Barry M’s vivid purple on all but my ring finger nails, which I applied the holographic nail polish from GOSH. The holographic polish looked amazing under the lights, but at the same time was a really nice contrast with the deep purple colour.

This final picture is my sister and I out on the night. 

I hope you all had a memorable start to the new year.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

2012 beauty resolutions

Happy new year all! I have had an extremely lazy start to the year, even though I do not drink it has taken me the whole day to recover from last night, in my defence I did go with cold underway when I really should have been sensible and stayed home. But I did have a chance today to think of some beauty resolutions for the new year.

Use things up before buying anything new
I already know what things I do not need more of in 2012 and beyond, so I will not be making any purchases of products I already have plenty of. I’m not going to put a spending ban on myself because I know I will end up being tempted by the fact that I am not supposed to be spending. Instead I will attempt to be sensible, think twice and the few beauty wish list items I have, I will treat myself to over the year.

*Try* and control blackheads
There are a few new products I have heard are great at clearing blackheads, which I would like to test this year. I also would like to treat myself to regular facials, once every 3 months or so, which include extraction, something that I don’t think I could safely do myself without possibly scarring. I love Dove Spa who also do skin analysis and would like to treat myself to at least one of these just to check if my skin type has changed much and so they can offer me advice on what is best to use and what I need to focus on to keep my skin healthy and looking its best. Do let me know if you would like a review of Dove Spa facials, they are my favourite place to have a facial, I just wish they were a bit less pricey!

Treat my hair 
I don’t pay too much attention to my hair, I cut it and do intensive treatments sporadically and to keep it looking its best I really should have a better schedule for doing these.

Rotate the makeup I use
I noticed that, particularly when I get something new, I tend to wear it every day and then move onto something else, I want to start mixing up my makeup on a daily basis and making more use of everything I own.

Start body brushing
It is one of those beauty tips I always notice in magazines but have never managed to do more than a few times without abandoning. Again something I need to find a way of scheduling into my routine.

Use my No! No! Hair regularly
I have owned, and used the No No hair on and off for over a year now (I will post a review soon). In short it does work it just takes time and persistence. I need to find a routine to using this so I can get the best results, and hopefully be hair free by the end of the year.

These are all achievable resolutions, I hope! Please share your beauty resolutions as well as your tips on how to keep them!

© Discovering Beauty | All rights reserved.
Blogger Template Designed by pipdig