The Autumn Nail Polish Edit: Calling All Nail Varnish Addicts

I’ve not bought any new nail polish for ages, and with the weather getting more autumnal lately I thought I’d pick up some new autumn-inspired shades.

I tried to choose shades that I know I’ll wear; I’m terrible for buying shades in the moment and then letting them dry up, so I went for some classic shades that are perfect for autumn but can also be worn all year round.

Maybelline are a great brand for nail polishes, plus they had a 3 for 2 on so I picked up a few shades that I absolutely love.

‘Rubies On’

This is a classic ruby red shade, perfect for autumn as it will pair with those gorgeous Burgundy and mustard shades that are coming back in to fashion at the moment.

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‘City Smoke’

‘City Smoke’ is a mix between pale blue and grey, and pairs perfectly with navy blue and warm jumpers. A great one for toes too, as it’s part of Maybelline’s 60 second collection so it dries super fast.

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‘White Splatter’

A nail polish from Maybelline’s Color Show Top Coat collection, this nail varnish is designed to be used over the top of a white or black polish. I decided to use it on its own, and love the effect.

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I’ve found these three nail polishes aren’t prone to chipping, and hold great pigment given the very cheap price point.

What are your favourite autumn nail polishes? Let me know in the comments!

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Friction Free Shaving Review: Meet Rose

I recently reviewed the Samantha razor from Friction Free Shaving. It’s safe to say that I’m hooked on the razor subscription model and you won’t be seeing me crawling back to Superdrug or Boots any time soon (friction free shaving discount code at the end of the blog if you’re interested!).

If you read my original Friction Free Shaving review you’ll know that I’m in love with the brand and think it’s an idea long overdue that FFS are tackling; that women’s razors are overpriced and never last as long as you’d hope considering the price you pay for them.

Shaving is also very much an inconvenience, and it’s difficult to psyche oneself up to go and by razor blades. It’s was much easier to keep using that same blunt, semi-rusted razor that’s been sitting on the side of the bath for a few weeks too long – until I met FFS.

Yes, you guessed it, I’m a self-confessed, FFS addict and proud. So when they announced that they were bringing a new lady to their razor family, I had to try it.

Friction Free Shaving Review

Meet Rose. She is as gorgeous as Samantha, but has a few more tricks up her sleeve when it comes to performance which, to be honest, I was sceptical if FFS could improve upon as I was pretty impressed with the Samantha razor.

Rose has 6 blades (yes you heard right, a women’s razor with 6 blades!), which means you can achieve an incredibly close shave with no nicks or cuts to report. She’s a pink, rose gold shade and the handle is weighted as with Samantha, which means the razor is easy to hold and use.

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Additional benefits include a styling bikini blade at the back of the cartridge, plus Rose can even be engraved making this a great present for a friend (or an indulgence for you!).

Is it worth cheating on Samantha for? Absolutely, while my old trusty Samantha razor will always retain a special place in my heart, Rose gives a closer shave and comes with the added benefit of a blade cover (thanks for listening to us FFS!) and a nifty shower holder.

Rose is also made of a combination of rubber and metal which I definitely prefer, as I did find I used to drop Samantha sometimes as she was made entirely of metal.

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So would I recommend you try Rose? Absolutely, it makes shaving a more enjoyable experience and you’ll never be stuck without decent razors again.

You can even pause your subscription for a month if you’re going on holiday, or even if you find you’re inundated with razor blades a few months in. Simply pause your subscription until you’ve used them up and come back to it when you’re ready.

Friction Free Shaving Discount Code

You can even get 25% off your first box by following this link: http://ffs.co.uk/r/?r=N62WCJ and using the code N62WCJ to get started. Let me know how you get on, I’d love to know!

 

Urban Decay Naked Heat Palette: The Verdict

So recently Urban Decay released the fifth edition in their Naked Palette range, the mother of all warm-toned eyeshadow palettes and subject of endless Social Media hype.

If your Facebook and Instagram feeds have been anything like mine, it’s been very difficult to avoid the hype around this product, but for good reason; it is probably the most Instagram-able palette ever released. A beautiful combination of shimmers and mattes, I made a beeline for the Urban Decay website on release day and managed to get my hands on one.

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What I love about this palette is that it’s both wearable and can be amped up. I’ve been wearing it almost everyday, but I’ve been playing with beautiful looks for nights out and the festival season too.

The packaging is sturdy and has a satisfying magnetic close which means there’s no worry of the palette opening in your makeup bag, plus there’s a nice big mirror inside. Always a bonus.

For an insight into each individual shade, keep scrolling:

Ounce: A pearlescent white, ‘Ounce’ is a great all-over-the-lid shade that is perfect underneath other shimmer shades. This is very creamy and looks great alone too.

Chaser: This shade reminds me of a paler version of ‘Naked’ from the original Naked Palette. Wearable and nude, this is a great shade for adding a touch of definitition without anything too crazy.

Sauced: ‘Sauced’ is a little too peachy for my liking, but if buffed well into the crease it makes a very nice contour shade.

Low Blow: This is one of my favourites from the palette. I love this shade on a day to day basis, and it can be amped up with a touch of ‘Cayenne’ in the crease.

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Lumbre: love this shade, it beautifully applies on top of ‘Ounce’, and is the perfect partner for ‘Dirty Talk’ and ‘Scorched’.

He Devil: This shade is difficult to work with, but the colour is a beautiful, burnt orangey / red, and if you can be bothered to spend the time blending is a real treat.

Dirty Talk: Another top shade of mine, I love using this in the crease on top of ‘Lumbre’, or for something more dramatic it’s gorgeous on top of ‘Ounce’ too.

Scorched: ‘Scorched’ is a dark shimmery pink, if you love your metallics this one’s for you. Pink copper at its best.

Cayenne: I love ‘Cayenne’, blends beautifully with ‘Lumbre’, ‘Dirty Talk’ and ‘Low Blow’. It’s a beautiful orange pepper shade, and is definitely my favourite matte in the palette.

En Feugo: This one’s beautiful but tricky to work with. If used with a matte base such as ‘Chaser’ or ‘Sauced’ it can work well with a fluffy blending brush.

Ashes: A gorgeous shade but a little chalky for my liking. If you’re a fan of your purple shades I’m sure this would blend well with other similar colours.

Ember: For me this is the dark horse of the palette, a gorgeous, sultry shimmer that’s between red and purple.  My favourite way of using this is to layer it over ‘Scorched’ and ‘Dirty Talk’.

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If you already have warm-toned palettes, such as the Anastasia Modern Renaissance or the Sephora Pro Palette you can probably give this one a miss, but if it’s your first in the vein of ever growing warm eye shadow palettes I’d highly recommend this one.

My only qualms with this palette are that there are a number of mattes that are tricky to work with, but the majority of shades are a delight and the shimmers are creamy but not too chunky.

I don’t think I’ll be getting bored of this one any time soon, you can pick one up here if you’re interested!

Sephora Collection Illuminate Palette

HOLD THE PHONE; is this a new highlighter palette you say? You’re not wrong, introducing the new highlighter palette in my life, the Sephora Collection Illuminate Palette.

Grand entrance? Yes, but for good reason; this new highlighting palette from Sephora is a gorgeous new addition to my collection. It packs a punch in the pigmentation department, plus it’s kind to those on a budget.

Let’s have a look at some swatches shall we?

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1# – The first shade in this palette is a subtle pale pink, perfect for eye shadow or highlighting. I love a little pop of this in the inner corner of the eye, and it’s beautiful over a pinky blush.

2# – Cue the golden goddess shade of the palette. This shade is gorgeous all over the lid, and reminds me of a subtle version of Urban Decay’s half baked. While this is a lovely colour for summer, I can’t wait to team this with Burgundy lipstick in autumn.

3# – Number 3 is a pure shimmery white, not my favourite but definitely has its uses as a brow highlight / intense cheek highlight. Great for nights out when you want to tell the world you’re wearing a highlight.

4# – A stunning yellow-gold, number 4 is definitely my favourite for cheek highlighting. I use this shade all the time, and it hugely reminds me of Becca’s Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone. LOVE.

5# – While this isn’t a cheek shade I can rock with my complexion, I adore this shade as an eyeshadow. This pairs beautifully with shade 2#, and is another that I can’t wait to pack on in the autumn time.

6# – And last but not least we have a stunning mauve-pink shade, the most wearable colour in the palette in my opinion as it doubles up as a blush and a highlight. Great with a tan as well as brightening paler skin.

Overall I’m very impressed with this palette. Pigmentation isn’t emphatic by any means, but I prefer to gradually build up a highlight rather than worrying I’ve applied too much.

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This is an excellent dupe for the Becca Afterglow Palette, which is currently sold out and nearly double the price.

My only qualm with this palette is the packaging. I’d have loved to have seen a mirror with this palette, and the packaging isn’t particularly sturdy. However given that you get a huge amount of product here for your money, I’d highly recommend if you’re looking for a cheaper alternative to the current popular highlighters on the market that still packs a punch.

THIS WORKS In Transit Camera Close Up

I’m all for a multi-purpose product; if it saves me time doing my makeup in the morning then count me in.

When I received the This Works In Transit Camera Closeup (such a mouthful of a name, thankfully the product is better!) in a recent Birchbox, I really liked the sound of it. It claims to be a face-mask, moisturiser and primer in one, which essentially means that it’s rich enough to be used as an intense moisture boost but also sits well under makeup.

The ethos behind this product is that it’s perfect for creating the perfect skin for ‘close-ups’, i.e. it’s good for wedding photos, events etc.

I can confirm that this creates a beautiful base for makeup, and isn’t the slightest bit greasy. I’m a big fan of the Lush Million Dollar Moisturizer, however it’s nice to use this product on top sometimes to tone down the oily texture.

This product reduces the appearance of pores, plus it keeps redness at bay which is a big plus. I’ve not used this solely as a face mask yet, but I can definitely see how it would work as it’s definitely richer in texture than your standard moisturiser.

This retails at £30.00 on Feel Unique, which isn’t the cheapest product on the market, but if you consider you’re getting 3 products in 1 I think it’s pretty good.

Anyone else loving this one? I’ll definitely be re-purchasing once my sample size runs out.

 

 

Bronzer On A Budget: L’Oreal Glam Bronze Cushion de Soleil

l'oreal cushion de soleil bronzer

I love a good bronzer, particularly in the summer months when everyone has been on holiday except you and you need to give that pasty skin of yours a bronzed boost.

What do I love more than a good bronzer? A bronzer that is affordable, easy to apply and doesn’t break leaving your handbag an orange mess.. There are many bronzers on the market at the moment that aren’t only ridiculously expensive, but they’re also so pigmented that you have to apply with the lightest hand to avoid looking like you’ve been rolling around in dirt for the afternoon.

So when I stumbled across the L’Oreal Glam Bronze Cushion de Soleil I was sold. A budget bronzer that is in liquid form, pressed into a cushion compact with a mirror and on-the-go buff applicator. Love. It.

This is by far the easiest to apply bronzer I’ve ever used. I like to use a Real Techniques Sculpting Brush, but any kind of buffing brush really will do. The puff that comes in the packaging isn’t the best, but definitely good for touching up on the go.

I like to apply this on the high points of my cheeks, rather than the hollows, as this is definitely a bronzing product as opposed to a contour. I tend to find generally that I get a more flattering result anyway by bronzing my cheekbones rather than contouring; in doing so you’re shaping your face and giving a much more flattering effect – I tend to look a bit gaunt when contouring properly, whereas using this technique just makes my cheekbones look higher and much more defined.

L'OREAL cushion bronzer

The finish is very dewey which I love, and isn’t too orange either. Wear time is pretty good, but I’d recommend adding a touch of powder on top if you want it to last all day. As a liquid bronzer you’re unfortunately never going to get that wear time of powder, however I much prefer the finish and would rather top this up throughout the day than use a powder that looks too dry.

As for the packaging, I think it’s very pretty and definitely keeps the product inside secure. you have a compartment on the top with the applicator, and then you have to lift this to reach the cushion beneath.

I used to think cushion products were a bit of a fad, but can definitely see the appeal now. My only concern is this product will run out fairly quickly, but at £14.99 from Boots you’ll hardly be breaking the bank to replace it, and with the amount of 3 for 2’s on these days you can usually snap up a bargain pretty easily.

A budget bronzer that’s easy to apply and leaves a dewey finish; what more could you want?

Kat Von D’s Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in ‘Lolita’

I used to love watching Kat Von D on LA Ink, and have been meaning to pick up something from her makeup line for a long time.

With the matte liquid lipstick trend showing no signs of ending any time soon, I figured I may as well delve into another collection of liquid lipsticks (as if our lips need any more drying out!).

Kat Von D’s most famous product is probably the Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick collection, famous for its staying power and wide selection of colours to choose from.

I made the decision to go for ‘Lolita’, an iconic browney-nude colour. A 90s-esque shade, this is a very wearable, yet statement, lipstick, giving plenty of pigment that is easily buildable.

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Application is very easy, with quite a long wand and a doe foot applicator. I do think if the wand was slightly shorter it may be easier to apply, but hey ho.

These set very quickly when on the lips, and truly do have excellent staying power. I’ve found with ‘Lolita’ it fades very flatteringly on the lips if eating etc, but I’m not sure this would be the same for the more daring shades in the collection.

I wouldn’t say these are the most comfortable liquid lipsticks on the market, but it is difficult to achieve when going for that extremely matte, long-lasting finish.

Overall I’m very impressed, and will definitely be picking up some more shades.  ‘Motorhead’ is next on my list, and ‘Damned’ is also gorgeous.

These retail at £17, and can be bought at your local Debenhams or online. There are so many different colours to choose from, so I’ll definitely be picking up some more shades in the near future.

 

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Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream All-Over Miracle Oil Review

I’m a huge fan of the Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream, so when I heard they were releasing an oil version I simply couldn’t resist. A cult classic, the eight-hour cream has been hugely popular amongst beauty bloggers and skincare lovers of all ages, and I have a sneaky feeling that this lovely little product is going to be no different.

The beauty of the Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream All-Over Miracle Oil (excusing the ridiculously long name!) is that it’s very much a multi-purpose product. It functions beautifully as a hair oil, a facial oil, and a body oil, making this the perfect product if you travel regularly and need one holy-grail oil for everything (or if you’re lazy like me and don’t want to faff around with 3 different kind of oil-based products).

I like to use this on my hair before blow-drying, and as a facial oil before bed. Packaged in a handy spray bottle, this also makes moisturising your body easy, a task that few of us enjoy and manage to regularly maintain.

The beauty of moisturising your body with an oil is that you don’t get that sticky feeling after application, plus it’s not cold to apply. You can simply spritz on after a shower and voila. Supple, rejuvenated skin in no time.

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At £29 this certainly isn’t a budget product, however for a high-end, multi-purpose moisturising oil I think you’d struggle to find a cheaper alternative on the market.

For me this is a delight to use – let me know your thoughts in the comments.

May Birchbox Review

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So, this is my third Birchbox, and I’ve been really impressed with them so far.

They’re always delivered on time, and come in the most beautiful packaging.

May’s Birchbox has been no different, with a stunning design called ‘For the Dreamers’. Birchboxes are always unique, and this one you can scratch off with a coin to reveal the colourful design within.

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There are six products in this month’s Birchbox, and they’re all really good!

Philip Kingsley PK Prep Polishing Balm

This is a really lovely smoothing hair balm, perfect for taming frizz and curlier hair.

I love using this on blow-dried hair, to enhance my curls and keep frizz at bay. It can also be used on damp hair too.

Really lovely product, will be trying more from Philip Kingsley for sure!

Spectrum Collections Unicorn Tears Wonder Sponge

This is cheaper alternative to the beauty blender, and at 4.99 it’s a great deal. It’s quite a bit firmer than the beauty blender, but I find that it applies much fuller coverage than other sponges because of this, and it leaves the skin looking really flawless.

I usually dampen it before use, and ‘bounce’ my foundation into my skin. Lovely.

may birchbox review

Vita Coco Coconut Oil

I’m a big coconut oil fan, so when I saw there was a coconut oil sample in May’s Birchbox, I was super happy.

I can’t say it’s a great deal different to other coconut oils I’ve tried, but it’s really nice. Great for a hair mask before bed, a moisturizer and even cooking!

Vasanti Brighten Up! Enzymatic Face Rejuvinator

This is a really nice exfoliator, but be warned, it’s super grainy! You only need a tiny bit, and you won’t need to rub it into your skin harshly, but it really does leave your skin feeling clean and ultra smooth.

Ingredients include papaya, micro-crystals and aloe vera, giving you optimum hydration and removing dead skin cells.

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Puriskin Resurfacing Cream 

I don’t think I’ve been using this long enough to see the long-term effects, but I have high hopes!

It’s smells divine, and claims to help reduce the appearance of acne scarring, age spots, blemishes, bruises and a whole range of other skin issues.

I’ve been using it on some stubborn scarring – I’ll let you know if it has an effect!

The Balm Staniac Lip and Cheek Tint

This is a really lovely natural blush tint, that can be applied with fingers or a brush.

It’s not quite as good on the lips, as it tastes a bit strange, but would probably work lightly patted in for a natural look.

 

Have you tried May’s Birchbox? Let me know what you thought!

The Anna and Lily Cult Beauty Box Review!

anna and lily cult beauty box review

I’m such big fans of Vivianna Does Makeup and Lily Pebbles, so when I heard that they were collaborating with the awesome online beauty retailer Cult Beauty, I had to put my name on the mailing list.

The ordering process went very smoothly – I received an email on the Friday with a link directing me to the order page, and my purchase went through without a hitch.

I received my box within a couple of days, which is fantastic. Normally these things can take weeks, so I was very excited and impressed to see my box on my doorstep only days after ordering it!

Now, let’s start with the packaging.

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In true blogger style, the box itself is gorgeous, with beautiful marble detailing and gold lettering.It’s a very decent size, perfect for re-using to store makeup bits etc, and the products were folded in black tissue paper – very fancy.

The products themselves really are excellent. You can tell by the selection that these products are staple favourites for Lily and Anna, and the sizes are very generous.

So, let’s get to what I thought of the products…

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Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel (100ml)

I have wanted to try this cleanser for the longest time, having heard many reviews from my favourite bloggers, particularly Anna and Lily.

It’s a beautiful texture, almost oily and quite thick. It leaves the skin feeling very nourished and smooth, and it is very gentle. Full of vitamins and essential nutrients, this is a real treat for the skin.

I  was very impressed to receive a full size of this product, as it’s not the cheapest cleanser on the market. I have fallen in love with it, and the packaging is great too!

Becca Backlight Priming Filter (6ml)

I am completely smitten with this primer, and will definitely be buying the full size once this one has run out.

This is a cute travel size, and leaves the most gorgeous glow to the skin.

I’ve even been mixing this in with my foundation, to add extra glow and hydration

LOVE. IT.

Pixi Hydrating Milky Mist (80ml)

I’ve never been much into face mists, but this is lovely. Perfect for a top-up of moisture before you apply makeup, this Pixi face mist really adds that kick of moisture that you may have lost since applying moisturiser.

Containing hyaluronic acid, this face mist has true skincare benefits, and can even be applied over makeup for a cool spritz on warm days.

Yu Ling Jade Facial Roller

I’ve never used a facial roller before, so I was very intrigued by this product.

Regular massaging the face is very good for keeping your skin looking bright, and jade is said to have healing properties.

I love keeping this in the fridge and using it when my skin is red and puffy… or when I’m feeling a little worse for wear. Great for getting rid of hangovers!

Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner

Now, this is the only product of the bunch that I am slightly disappointed with.

While it applies beautifully, and it super black, it just isn’t waterproof! It smudges really badly on me, which I never usually have a problem with, and it transfers above my eyelids, which, let’s be honest, is never going to catch on.

I will continue to use this, but perhaps more for natural makeup days, where I just need a really fine line to frame my eyes. I want to love it, I really do. Maybe it just needs to dry out a little?

Wet Brush Pro Classic

If, like me, your hair is like a lion’s mane after it’s been washed, you are going to love this!

It’s the best de-tangling brush I’ve ever used. It effortlessly combs through hair, with no tugging or anything painful.

I used to have to smother my hair in oil before even daring to brush it, whereas now I use only a tiny bit on the ends to keep split ends at bay.

I’m totally converted on this one, and really want one of the travel size ones to pop in my handbag.

anna and lily cult beauty box review

The Verdict

This box retails at 85 pounds, which is very good when you consider this is over half price if you were to buy these items separately.

I’m a huge fan of this box, and am so glad I made the order.

Have any of you tried it? Let me know what you think!