Wednesday, 22 October 2014

One-to-One Makeup Session At Peaches And Cream



After following their account on Instagram for some time and hearing such great reviews from friends that had been for makeovers, I just had to visit the 'Peaches and Cream' hair and makeup salon in Liverpool. The place has been growing in popularity for the past year or two and has had many a celebrity face in the makeup chair. It prides itself on offering the everyday girl a celebrity service, and even though I'm not nearly half as glamorous as the average Liverpool girl, glitter and gloss attract me like a moth to a flame.

The event that spurred on my visit was my sisters upcoming prom. She had placed her trust in me to do her hair and makeup for the whole thing so as preparation is key, we chose to take a lesson from the girls at P&C. 

With their makeup looks being in such high demand, they offer clients the chance to learn the trade tricks for themselves. They offer a range of different tutorials, from group masterclasses where one of the girls demos a look on a model, or you can book in for a one to one class. We chose the latter as I was keen to have the attention of the makeup artist all to myself! 

You can choose between a number of different looks to recreate, with the focus being very much on the eyes. You can choose between the 'full smoke', 'half smoke' or 'glitter smoke' look, and in this case we went for the more subtle 'half smoke'. This look uses one colour on the lid and is blended out with alternative complimentary shades. In comparison to this is the full smoke which is much more dramatic and uses colours to smoke out the majority of the eye.   

When we arrived at Peaches we were taken aback by just how vibrant the place is. The salon itself is just so much fun to be in, the decor is bright and outrageous and reflects the personalities of these lively Liverpool girls perfectly. The Instagram pictures really don't do it justice! We were greeted by Kre who was to be my tutor for the morning and we got stuck in straight away. 

My sister Kim was to be my model but taking a model isn't actually necessary, you can also learn on yourself. The girls work by demonstrating the techniques on one half of the face and you reciprocate (or at least try to!) on the other. My own makeup habits mean that I always apply eyeshadow after I've done my foundation, but Peaches get the eyes perfected first. That meant that as much fall down was allowed as I pleased and enabled me to pack as much colour on as necessary! I was actually a little worried at what the outcome would look like as this was a completely new technique to me, but when we had finished and I wiped away the excess I couldn't believe I'd managed to use more than one colour without it turning into a black smudge! 

Kim's face was finished off with foundation, bronze, contour, blush, lips, lashes and Peaches own signature Pearl highlight. It's a beautiful pink, pearly iridescent pigment that looks no less than stunning and really compliments a rosy toned cheek (review on that to come!). My sister really did look beautiful, I was just worried about recreating it at home! Thankfully you get to take away a step-by-step guide from 'The University of Peaches and Cream' which has pictures detailing the entire process. 

I really enjoyed the session I had here and I did manage to recreate it for my sisters prom, which goes to show their one-to-ones really are worthwhile. The girls here are just so talented, the work they put online never fails to amaze me. They are currently promoting their annual 'Peaches and Scream' makeovers in time for Halloween and the SFX looks they've done over the past few weeks are just incredible, just head over to their Instagram @peachesmakeup to see what I mean. 

Peaches and Cream don't just specialise in makeup but hair too, if you want to find out more visit their website fabulousmakeup.co.uk. My one-to-one was £25 and lasted around 45 minutes, call 01512271669 to book.

Images below: Kim in the makeup chair at Peaches and Cream. Left side by me, right side by Kre.












Images below: The look recreated at home multiple times, with two different shades used on the lid just for experimentation purposes on some pictures.













































Are you thinking of visiting Peaches and Cream?

Han X

Friday, 17 October 2014

Ted Baker Cierra Clutch Review

 
So for the first time in a long time I'm blogging again! I have been distracted for the last couple of months and not felt like dedicating much time to champagnetote. However, I've got some posts lined up for the next few weeks so I shall hopefully get back into the swing of things!
 
So this is my heavenly Ted Baker Cierra bag that I purchased not so long ago. I'll admit, it was bought on a bit of a whim...I'd seen it a few months back and fell in love with it but couldn't succumb to the hefty price tag. However, whilst roaming around the Trafford Centre store in Manchester, their 20% off student offer just sucked me in and I don't regret a thing.
 
It's made of bovine leather, which is soft and has a very similar texture to suede. For this reason, keeping it spotless is difficult...it attracts dirt and dust for fun. I haven't put a protector/cleaning product on it as I'm terrified of ruining it but for now I'm just trying to keep it clean through not getting it dirty!
 
I guess that's the downside of the Cierra, you live in fear of spilling a drink on it, or god forbid, food or makeup. For that reason it shall only be making appearances on civilised outings, not "drunk out my face" ones.
 
The deep black of the leather really compliments the rose gold hardware (ahhh). I'm obsessed with the stuff right now, from bracelets to makeup brushes, I'm. Into. Rose. Gold. A tassel trim adorns the front of the bag and is finished off with a Ted Baker embossed clasp and shoulder chain strap. The chain is actually removable and turns the bag into a very chic clutch, handy eh? You can simply place the chain inside the bag and flip down the little hooks, or remove the chain completely.
 
The interior is fashioned with a grey/blue flower print lining and has a little pocket for necessities. As for what you can actually fit inside the Cierra, it's certainly not the kitchen sink. Phone, keys, coin purse, powder, brush and lippy is the max but it is a small bag after all (a good excuse for forgetting the purse and letting your fella pay).
 
Retailing at £129, it's expensive but it's timeless. It's classic and can be put together with pretty much anything, I love it.
 



 
Ted Baker Cierra Tassell Clutch Bag - tedbaker.com @ £129
 
What do you think of the Cierra?
 
Han X

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

My Current MAC Lipstick Collection

Noseying at people's MAC lipstick collections is one of my favourite things to do, whether it be blog wise or rummaging through my friends makeup bag, I'm obsessed. With that I thought I'd let you all know where my own collection stands. Please note, I haven't bought all these overnight, I've bought them in dribs and drabs, here and there (although I would buy ten more overnight if I had the money!) It's a work in progress, yes I intend to buy more; to me they are more than just lipsticks, they're collectables too. I've tried to swatch them as best I can as I find these so helpful when I'm deciding which colours to buy. So here goes...





Swatches are in order of list below (and yes I have hairy arms).

Impassioned (Amplified): This is a popping pink shade that really makes a statement. It's a beautiful colour but its intensity might not be to everyone's taste. I did a full review on this shade here.



Brave Red (Cremesheen): I don't own a red lipstick at all so I felt it was only right I added one to my stash! This is a lovely glossy, bright shade and isn't too daunting at all.

 
 


Rebel (Satin): This is a popular shade that has found its way into many a makeup bag. I'm not in love with it on me but I think it looks amazing on other skin tones. Check out my full thoughts here.



Dark Side (Amplified): This is such a favourite of mine, its a deep red with browny undertones and I've not stopped wearing it. It's a real vampy shade and it looks a treat with winged liner. Reviewed here.



Plumful (Cremesheen): I love this cute shade, it's just so pretty. It leaves a plummy coloured pink sheen on the lips that's still very much noticeable despite being sheer. It's gorgeous.



Crème In Your Coffee (Cremesheen): This is quite pigmented considering it's a cremesheen. It's a browny pink colour and is the perfect choice for when you want to stray from your average nude shade.



Blankety (Amplified): This is a new one of mine (arrived today along with Coral Bliss, yey!) so I've only got my initial impressions to go off. I haven't wore it with full makeup yet so I hope it looks better than how it looks without!



Pink Plaid (Matte): This was my first ever MAC lipstick! I wore it to death when I first got it so I only have a small bit left now. I've gone off it somewhat in recent years and haven't worn it for ages. However, now its seen the light of day I might wear it once again.

 
Vegas Volt (Amplified): Another one I've worn to death. This is a very bright pinky coral and it's gorgeous. It's one of those shades people will always compliment on and ask what it is. Super summery and one of my faves, there's a full review here.



Coral Bliss (Cremesheen): This is a very sheer coral colour, I wanted a toned down coral from the one above that I wear so often, so this was the pick of the bunch. It's gives a very light sheen of colour that's just noticeable enough.


Which ones do you like? Which of your favourites would you recommend? Let me know!

All of these were purchased at MAC counters/maccosmetics.co.uk for £15

Han X



Monday, 14 April 2014

Benefit Six Piece B.Right! Skincare Set Review


I can't say I'm the biggest Benefit fan there is, I don't know why but I never feel their products are up to much cop and I have been left feeling uninspired by what I've used of theirs in the past. However I came across their skincare range a few months back and thought I'd try it out for size (literally). I was taken in by the cutesy miniature range they offer and for £12.50, even if it was naff, it's worth the price for trialling and testing a large selection of the skincare they offer.

All these products are from the B.Right range which all look lovely in their blue and beige packaging. Even these small products are given glass bottles adorned with peach toned lids. Benefit have delivered on the aesthetic front, but its what's on the inside that counts...

It's Potent! Eye Cream:
So you get 0.3g of product with this which is pretty much sample size, but enough to do you for a few weeks. It clearly states that it is 'a brightening eye cream to fade dark circles', which is quite a statement in anyone's book. However I don't feel it does this, my dark circles are still there and my surrounding skin isn't what I would consider 'bright'. It does hydrate though and feels great on the skin, the formula looks quite thick but upon application it has a very light consistency and glides on to the skin easily. It takes a couple of minutes to completely sink in and can feel a little wet whilst doing so, but the cooling feeling it gives whilst working into the skin actually helps my eyes to feel a little more awake. 

Overall, Benefit are a company primarily aimed at 16-30's, so I'm guessing if this product doesn't do much for my 20 year old eyes, then I doubt it'll do much at all for a more mature eye. I see this product as more of a eye moisturiser than anything else, as all it seems to do is keep my eyes hydrated. However it does contain a peptide complex known to help restore elasticity & firmness, so I might just reap the benefits when I'm 50 ey. There is no way I would purchase the full size version of this, perhaps I would if the prices weren't so ridiculous (£25.50!) but it just isn't good enough to justify that sort of money.

Total Moisture Facial Cream:
If you like your thick and heavy moisturisers, this is for you. It has a smooth paste like consistency, which feels a little greasy between your fingers and slightly on the face but not nearly as bad as I expected. Total Moisture takes a little longer than I would like to properly sink into the face. So this combined with the fact it's on the heavier side of moisturisers, I prefer to use it at night. I recommend using this only on the areas that actually need moisturising as it is so intense; it fixes up dry patches straight away - its just not great on those oily areas.

Foamingly Clean Facial Wash:
You don't really get enough of this product to properly trial it, you get roughly two washes, three at a push for your 8.9g. It's a facial cleanser and claims to 'effectively cleanse the skin and remove makeup and impurities with a soft, gentle lather'. The soft, gentle lather I'll take but removing makeup isn't the case. I was really enthusiastic about using this, as I hate makeup removal so anything that makes the process quicker is always a win for me. However I still had foundation remnants on my face once I'd worked it into the skin and washed it off. Disappointing. The actual formula of the product is lovely, it does work into a foamy soothing lather that makes the skin feel soft and supple but it just doesn't clean.

Refined Finish Facial Polish:
This is pretty much an exfoliating version of the above but doesn't foam up in the same way. I've used it after the facial wash (which means all you're makeup will come off) but all I've really found is that it leaves my skin feeling very dry and blotchy. The microbeads might be a little too harsh for some people, as it appears they are for me so I'd be weary!

Triple Preforming Facial Emulsion SPF 15:
If I were to purchase anything from this range, It'd be this. It has been my favourite out of the bunch and I have been impressed. First of all I love the fact it has SPF in it, as it means I can wear it underneath SPF free foundations or alone without worrying about protection. I've tended to wear this during the daytime for this reason. The actual product is very light and watery in consistency which I love, it cools the face as it goes on and sets in very quickly. A bonus is that it isn't oily or greasy whilst keeping my skin hydrated and hasn't even broken me out! Yey!

Moisture Prep Toning Lotion:
I'm not mad on toners and I haven't really given this the full run down. However I have been using it instead of the Facial Emulsion now that it has run out, as I feel this is hydrating enough to be used without a moisturiser. I don't like caking my face in different lotions and potions as I think it can just make everything so much worse, so I've been using this before bed and it has left my face soft and hasn't actually broken me out (yet!). It's not a bad product but for me it is something I don't feel I need or want.

So there we have it, not a glittering review by any means but an honest one at that. Some things work for some people and some don't, you may find these are your holy grails! But for me they are overpriced and don't offer much up product wise.

Benefit Six Piece B.Right! Skincare Set - £12.50 @ asos.com

Have you tried anything from Benefits Skincare range?

Han X

Sunday, 30 March 2014

What's In My Makeup Bag?

This is just a general overview of what I’m currently using day to day and what I tend to take with me when I’m on the go.

Juicy Couture Makeup Bag: I’ve had this like three years now, someone bought it me as a gift for my 18th birthday and it still looks good. It’s not the biggest of makeup bags but it is handy for carrying around your basic bits and pieces.

NARS Sheer Glow Foundation: I haven’t had this long actually, I have been using it on and off for about two months. I really can’t decide whether I like it or not yet but I will post a full review when I have my opinion firmly set down!

NARS Laguna Bronzer: Pretty much the best bronzer on the market! Such a good colour as well as being easy to use and blend, reviewed here.

Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer: I use this to cover up blemishes and dark circles, it works well and stays put all day.

MAC Studio Finish Concealer: I have this in the colour NW20, so I use it to brighten up the eye area. I’m still working out if I like this or not as I don’t find the colour all that flattering, however I do really like the formula.

MAC Plumful & Crème In Your Coffee: 100% my favourite lipsticks at the moment! Crème In Your Coffee is a purpley nude shade and Plumful is a pinky toned colour, both beautiful!

Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara: I have been using this for years, I even remember when it first came on the market! It’s definitely my favourite drug store mascara!

Hourglass Brow Sculpting Pencil: I love this, I love the packaging, the formula, the colour, it all just works. It’s so easy to apply and the spool is so handy!

MAC Mineralise Blush in Love Thing: This is my favourite blush, it’s such a pretty colour and it lasts ages. However it’s a very autumnal shade so I think I need to go on the hunt for something that feels a little more Spring-like! Read my thoughts on it here.

Charlotte Tilbury Feline Flick Shodo Liner: I have an on-off relationship with this liner, it’s best for when you’re on the go and need something that requires as little fuss as possible! Read the full review here.

Bourjois Effet 3D Gloss Shade 03: I use this over nude lipsticks to give my lips some moisture and a pop of colour. Doesn’t last anywhere near the 8 hours it proposes but it’s good for the money.
So there we have it! Hopefully it’ll be full of new goodies soon!
What have you purchased recently?

Han X

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Michael Kors Rose Gold Double Strap Watch Review


Pretty much every girl and her handbag have a Michael Kors or Marc Jacobs watch these days, it’s actually harder to find someone without one. But I understand why, some of them are bloody gorgeous. I can’t say I’m a massive fan of the metal link ones by MK, some of them look a little to brash for me, so I was overjoyed when I came across exactly what I want in the form of this beauty. Michael Kors don’t actually seem to do many leather ones, I think I’ve seen about three but this is the one I fell in love with and just had to have. I’ve never owned a watch before, shocking I know, so I wasn’t sure whether I’d get my wear out of it but it’s safe to say I’ve never had it off. I bought it just after Christmas as a little treat to myself so three months on I’d thought I’d share my thoughts.
First off the double strap is something I haven’t actually seen before so it immediately caught my eye. It has a kind of fish scale pattern that I thought might look a little tacky before I got it but it’s subtle enough and compliments the rest of the watch rather well. My favourite part of it however is the actual face; I love the fact that it’s rose gold which we’re all crazy for at the moment. I also love how large it is, to be honest I thought the fact it didn’t have actual numbers was going to drive me up the wall and make it difficult to tell the time but that hasn’t been the case at all (I’m no Joey Essex). Although the design is very simplistic, there has been a lot of attention to detail. A tiny MK embossing adorns the crown (watch jargon for that little thing that sets the time) and the words Michael Kors sit on the front of the face, back of the face, on the inside of the strap and on the strap fastener. No forgetting who this bad boy belongs too.
Unfortunately I’ve had some trouble with it; only two months in the part of the strap that attaches to the face had completely teared and was literally hanging off by a thread. It wasn’t wearable at all, I was gutted so immediately took it back to Earnest Jones who sorted me out a replacement no problem. I think the reason it had given way was because it doesn’t sit on your wrist in the same way a watch would with just one strap would. It kind of sits at an angel and I think the tension on one side had just caused it to rip. I’ve decided that if it does it again I’ll be returning it and getting my money back as obviously there is a design fault if keeps continuing.
 

Hopefully this won’t be the case though as I do absolutely love it, it’s comfortable and doesn’t get in the way of anything despite it having a big face. Saying that, unfortunately a day after I received my replacement watch I went out, got drunk and woke up the next morning to find I made some great dirty big scratches on the glass. Very annoying, you can’t take me anywhere.
 
Michael Kors Rose Gold-Plated Double Strap Watch – ernestjones.co.uk @ £145

Do you have an MK watch? Have you had any problems with it?
Han X

Thursday, 20 March 2014

The Day Facebook Asked Us To Bare All, What Did Our #Nomakeup Selfie Achieve?


 
So unless you've been living under a virtual social media rock over the past few days, you won't have noticed the influx of #nomakeup selfies that have taken over our timelines. Women everywhere have wiped away their eyebrows and laid bare their panda eyes and blotchy chins for all to see.
At first I'll admit I was sceptical, Tuesday night saw the odd one cropping up amidst pictures of tonight's tea and next doors dog. I took it as another Facebook fad that I didn't quite understand. However the following morning saw my Facebook feed peppered with 'nominations' and fresh-faced women ready to bare all in the name of cancer.
Of course there were still those questioning what this selfie overload was really about and what good it was really doing. Many a status bore something along the lines of "do something practical and get sponsored to help charity" and "these selfies don't achieve anything". True, they don't change the millions affected by cancer and they don't offer up a cure, but what they have done is put cancer, and not just breast cancer, at the forefront of everyones minds. Have you ever really seen this many people drum up support for one good cause in a matter of 48 hours? I haven't. It makes sense, the social media generation are selfie obsessed, barely a day goes by without coming across 1 or 10, so incorporating this into the way we generate charity awareness seems pretty genius to me. It was fun, took less than 5 minutes to do and absolutely everybody could get involved and feel they were doing something.
And they did do something, not only have these selfies got people talking about cancer, with people far and wide sharing their own cancer journeys, but they got the donation ball rolling. Despite the opinions of the cynics, nearly every other selfie I saw incorporated a screenshot of their BEAT texts to 70007. There’s no doubt that it’s pretty amazing but I personally don't think a bare faced selfie demands an immediate donation for it to be justified. But what I do feel is that it should inspire us to tip 50p into that charity bucket next time we walk past or encourage us to go out and buy a Marie Curie daffodil over the next few weeks.  If this is what happens then the job of the selfie has been done.  
Aside from the amazing support drummed up for cancer, I also watched in awe as I saw the whole female community get together and actually support one another. All too often we are told to see each another as mere rivals; women forget to back one another up. However the influx of bare faced selfies yesterday saw women actively encouraging those around them to get involved. There were women reminding other women that they were beautiful and for the first time I didn’t feel like I was going to be judged for uploading a selfie (which I sometimes feel happens even when I am wearing makeup). It was refreshing and there was a complete sense of ‘togetherness’ in the way people were embracing this challenge. Not only this, but as we are well aware, women everywhere are constantly fed those images of ‘perfection’, but yesterday made me realise that I am in fact normal. It was a relief to know that we all have those dark circles, spotty T-zones and not-so perfect pearly whites and for once women everywhere were welcoming them.
Social media is a wonderful thing and yesterday it really proved its worth. Reports have said that £15,000 was donated off the back of our beloved selfies and I for one am proud to have taken part.
Han X

Monday, 17 March 2014

Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation Review


I have done a review on Estee Lauders Double Wear foundation in the past on an old blog of mine, but back then I wasn’t as in love with it as I am now. With that and the fact I have worn this for around a year I can safely say what it is that I love and hate about this product.
First off, the one thing I love about Double Wear is the coverage. It is medium to high which allows for building so if medium just isn’t doing it one day then you can work it up. I rarely have to use much concealer when I’m wearing this as it covers 90% of blemishes on its own, hooray! But one thing that surprised me was that aside from its ability to conceal and the fact it is on the heavy side of the coverage scale, it still sits naturally on the face. It doesn’t feel heavy and doesn’t make me feel uncomfortable which I have found even some lightweight foundations can do!
I personally think this is down to how matte double wear is. I would describe it as a semi-matte finish, because it doesn’t make my face look dry or moistureless but at the same time is the only foundation that keeps my oily skin at bay. It doesn’t slip or slide off my face and with regard to my comment about lightweight foundations making me feel uncomfortable, it is because after a while I start to feel the oils building up. All I want to do is reach for a face wipe! I hate that feeling, but DW doesn’t do this and that's why I always use it when I know I’m going to be out from 9am until late as it doesn’t let me down. Handy having such faith in a foundation huh?! It deserves it to be honest because it is good.

The only qualm I have about this product is the fact I can’t wear it everyday. The fact that it is so heavy duty means that it can break me out if I wear it relentlessly which is not good. Therefore that’s why I use it when I know I have a long day ahead as that is what I feel it’s good for. With that, I don’t always need full coverage to be honest so it hasn’t become too much of a problem. But another thing is the SPF, which is obviously all well and good but I definitely can’t wear this on a night out. It doesn’t picture well at all and gives me a white cast over my face, making me look really washed out and colourless. I’ve heard this is because of the SPF reacting with the light, so avoid if you plan on getting snap happy ladies.
Overall I think it’s a great foundation, I think it’d take some getting used to if you haven’t used a high coverage foundation before (like I had to) but once you find your way with it, it really is worth the money. I will definitely be repurchasing when I’m all out!
Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation - £27.50 @ selfridges.com

Have you tried this foundation before? Are there any medium-high coverage foundations you’d recommend?
Han X

Friday, 28 February 2014

MAC Dark Side Lipstick Review

Dark Side is possibly my favourite MAC lipstick thus far. I love it. I picked it up whilst schmoozing the MAC counter on a whim one day and fancied a treat. I couldn't have chosen a better colour, as it's exactly what I've been looking for. 
 
 
Dark Side is a deep burgundy red with some subtle purple undertones and I think it is a shade many of us can work. It twists the classic red into the grunge and does so with ease. My favourite way to wear this shade is with thick black winged liner on the eyes teamed with a flawless finish on the skin, just add a leather jacket and you're smokin'. Of course not everyone wants to rock that look on the way to the food shop for example, but you can work it pretty much any way you want from edgy grunge to vampy to smart and sophisticated. It's wearable as a statement lipstick or a subtle stain, either way don't be put off by the intensity of the colour because it's a shade that I feel everyone looks good in. 
 
As for where this belongs on the MAC lipstick spectrum, it is from the Amplified collection (yet again) and certainly lives up to the expectations of this range. It is extremely pigmented, very creamy and not drying and stays on for ages. In my opinion you seriously can't knock an Amplified lipstick and they are definitely the best in terms of formula. 

MAC Dark Side Lipstick - £15 @ MAC 
 
I'm in love with this lipstick! What is your favourite statement shade? 

Han X

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Daisy & Flowerbomb Purse Refill Set Review




I’ve got a bit of a thing for these perfume miniatures at the moment, I mean we all love having the 100ml sitting on our shelf but when a girls on a budget you need something to soften the blow and that’s where these come in.  It all started with my Mum purchasing Daisy Eau so Fresh for me as a Christmas gift and I then went on to buy Flowerbomb in NYC. I knew I loved my little Marc Jacobs handbag companion so not being able to afford the full size (damn you Sephora), I opted for the baby counterpart.


Many of us are familiar with Jacobs’ signature and extremely recognisable scent Daisy. I’ve gone through a few bottles over the years and I still love it no less. It’s an extremely wearable scent for both daytime and evening, it’s just that versatile! It has a light, fresh, airy scent that doesn’t feel overpowering or heavy, you’ll receive many a compliment wearing this! As for the refill purse edition I have, I am extremely happy with it. The bottle is pretty much a miniature version of the big 100ml bottles, complete with pink rubber flower on the lid. I love the fact that this is a spray dispenser bottle as it makes everything just that little bit easier. For your money you get 20ml already in the iconic Marc Jacobs bottle and then another 15ml in a glass tube ready for a refill. The refilling process is very easy, just use the funnel provided, unscrew the spray dispenser and pour away.

 
Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb is one I have been after for so long and I have finally got my hands on a teeny portion of this beautiful scent. As the name suggests this is nothing less than a whole load of floral notes. It has a very girly and very sweet scent that I think some may find a little too overpowering, however it isn’t sickly which I can sometimes find with this kind of perfume. As for how I have taken to my refill kit I would say it’s pretty so-so. It comes with the iconic multi-faceted bottle, but it’s tiny (7ml) and is without the spray dispenser, it’s the whole pour and dab kind of thing. I’ve also had a ‘mare trying to refill it, you get the handy funnel to assist you with this but it’s just all a bit of a faff. The product just sits inside the funnel once you’ve poured it and refuses to go down. My thinking is that because this bottle is so small, placing the funnel inside the lid makes it air tight and there’s no room for manoeuvre. Instead the perfume ends up seeping out of the lid and you end up wasting product trying to get into the darn bottle, not the best. I can’t knock the perfume itself, I love it, but I think V&F need to take some tips from Mr Jacobs concerning the whole travel duo thang.


Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau So Fresh Eau de Toilette Purse Spray and Refill  - £25.05 @ escentual.com
Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb Travel Duo - $35 @ Sephora.com (doesn't seem to be available in the UK)

Have you had any refillables before? Anyone ever tried rollerball versions?

Han X

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Cult Favourites | NARS Laguna Bronzer & Super Orgasm Blush


Every brand has those stand out products that you just have to have for the sake of the cult. For NARS it’s their Laguna bronzer and Orgasm/Super Orgasm blushes; they don’t have a review on every blog ever for nothing. Choosing whether to leave out such highly talked about products from your blog or to add your opinion to the masses is a tough decision.  I don’t want to bore people with the same old story I’ve seen myself hundreds of times. But I know these products are good and because of that I want in too.

What I’m getting at is that no one needs me to do the whole shabang on these two products. Instead I’m combining them together and giving you a brief low down on why I love them and why I use them religiously.

NARS Laguna Bronzer:

I’ve been using this for around six months now and I’ve been entirely satisfied the whole time. Looking at the product in the pan, Laguna appears dark, a tad shimmery and I’ll admit, a little bit daunting. On the skin however it transfers into a gorgeous golden hue and there isn’t an orange undertone in sight. It warms up the skin when dusted on in all the right places and also makes for the perfect contouring companion. It doesn’t look muddy or dirty, but blends easily and effortlessly, creating that sought after definition. This is helped by the fact that it is a very pigmented bronzer and you don’t need that much product to achieve the look you’re after. It’s a pricey number at £26 but it is one I would seriously consider investing in if you haven’t already. I use mine every single day and feel I have definitely got my money’s worth, and I’ve barely made a dent in it!

NARS Super Orgasm Blush:

Nars have numerous cult status blushes, Super Orgasm just being one of about five. I would describe this as being a very girly, frosted baby pink with peachy undertones, however if you don’t like glitter then this probably isn’t for you. Super Orgasm has very large glitter particles and an incorporated shimmer that are very visible in the pan. On the skin however the glitter aspect of the product doesn’t transfer as you might expect, most of the particles come away from the brush as excess or don’t stick onto the face at all. For some this will be a disappointment but for others a relief, I find it to work well just as it is, I don’t find it to be too much or too little, it just epitomises what makeup should be – pink, girly and fun. The lasting power is about 4-5 hours, not revolutionary by any means but I think it can depend on how much you apply initially, I tend to try not to be too heavy handed and just add more throughout the day.

NARS Laguna Bronzer - £27 @ Selfridges

NARS Super Orgasm - £22.50 @ Selfridges

So there we have it, NARS are a firm favourite with every beauty lover and I’m no different, what are your favourite NARS products?  

Han X

Thursday, 20 February 2014

My New York City Purchases



 
First off I should acknowledge the fact that I've been away from my blog a little longer than anticipated. Sometimes life just throws you curveballs and all you can do is try to handle them, which also meant that I didn't feel at all like blogging. But I would also like to say thanks for the 20+ Bloglovin' followers I gained while I was absent, it was a nice surprise!

Anyway I'm back, and I'm back from the big apple which was absolutely amazing. It's definitely one of my favourite places, especially in the snow. My last post was a NYC wishlist, which I actually managed to stick to (roughly...). Unfortunately I was on a bit of a budget as I didn't have a great deal of time to save up spending money (we booked it pretty last minute!). Nevertheless I still managed to spend a good few hours in Sephora and MAC, swatching, testing and oozing over everything, so here's what I bought...




1. MAC Lipsticks

I actually only bought two lipsticks whilst I was away, Crème In Your Coffee and Plumful. These were both on my wishlist and I just had to have them. I wasn't too bothered about my other choices so I just bought the ones I had been eyeing up for ages. No regrets, they are both gorgeous and I haven't stopped wearing them since!



2. MAC Eyeshadows

I bought Cranberry, Naked Lunch, Sketch, Espresso and Rice Paper. The latter made an appearance because the lovely lady at MAC told me that it's great used as a highlight paired with Espresso on the brows. They only work out at around £7 in the US, a bargain in comparison to our UK prices. I only wish I could have bought more!



3. MAC Palettes

I went a little palette crazy. I already have the 15 insert palette which I bought a few months ago, but they are so much cheaper stateside that I just had to buy them all. I purchased the duo for my brow shadows, the quad for when travelling, the 6 insert blush palette and the 30 insert eyeshadow palette. I need to sort out what is being used for what, and I'll probably give one away but for less than £35 for them all, I would be mad not too!

 

4. MAC 208 Brush

I only have two MAC brushes currently, both 217’s of which I love but there are definitely more I want to add to my collection. I went for this one because I don’t actually have any brow brushes and felt it was time to invest, especially with all my eyebrow related purchases!

 

5. Makeup Forever HD Foundation

Finally got my hands on this! So unfair that some brands are only available overseas! At the moment I'm still in the process of working out my opinion on this one, but so far it's good.

 

6. Hourglass Arch Brow Shaping Pencil

I literally only bought this because I saw a comment by Viviannadoesmakeup stating she loved it. I think she's got great judgment and she hasn't let me down here, it's so easy to use it's quite ridiculous. The shade is perfect for me and I love its simplicity.

 

7. Anastasia Dipbrow Pomade

As you can see I am a little obsessed with the whole brow thing. This had me a little daunted at first, I've always used a pencil before now, but with continued practise it becomes less scary and you begin to work out your knack for painted on brows. I have to give myself a good ten minutes to get this right however so this only comes out when I have the time!

 

8. Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb

I really wanted the full size version but it's just so expensive. Instead I settled for the little baby version which is so cute, it would make a lovely gift. I think it’s a gorgeous scent and apparently Zara do their own version! Let me know if you’ve tried it!

 

So there goes, I’m happy with my purchases and have fallen in love with some of them. More detailed reviews on my favourites shall be up within the month which I can’t wait to share. Not sure whether to write a post on what I got up to in New York over the 5 days, what do you think?

Han X