Friday, 30 January 2015

Products I've Used Up - Would I Repurchase | #1

NSPA Oil Free Moisture Gel //
This is my holy grail moisturiser, I've used this consistantly for over a year now, and I've just started on my third bottle. The lightweight formula just instantly absorbs into my skin without leaving a slick or greasy residue on my skin. Every time I have purchased this it's always been on offer, so I tend to bulk buy when I see a good price. I recently stocked up on two more as they were on offer for £7.50 each or two for £8.00 - who makes these deals up?

No 7 Beautifully Matte Foundation //
This used to be my absolute favourite foundation in total I've used up three bottles, and have one still boxed up ready and waiting for summer. I only recently stopped using it as I noticed it was slightly too dark for my winter complexion. I still love this foundation but after discovering L'Oreal True Match I haven't given it a second thought. I will repurchase this eventually but in a lighter shade, but for now I'm still really into my True Match.

Urban Decay Up All Nighter Setting Spray //
 I cannot do my makeup without this setting spray being involved somewhere, whether it's to foil my eye shadows or simply to set my face. As soon as I felt I was into the last few spritzes I ordered a replacement - although this time I decided to try the Deslick spray - if you've used this before let me know what it's like.

YSL Shocking Mascara //
Me and this product have such a love hate relationship. When I first tried it I swore I would never repurchase it and called it an expensive mistake, but I went back to it after it had dried up slightly and I loved it. I'm on my third mascara now and I have a short period of time when I get a new one where I really have to work to get the best out of it, but once it's dried up slightly it makes my lashes so long and curled - it makes all the anguish well worth it.

Gathering all the products and actually writing this post was a real eye opener for me, I didn't realise that I actually use up as much makeup as I do. This obviously doesn't make up for all the eye shadows I have and have barely made a dint in - we can't all be perfect!
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Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Sweet Tintations | Benefit Gift Set

Benefit had some pretty sweet gift sets around Christmas - I know this is really late, but this gift set got buried under a mound of, for lack of a better word, crap, so I've only just had chance to play around with this - Merry Christmas to me.

Left: Benebalm | Right: Benetint

Left: Lollibalm | Right: Lollitint

This gift set is an absolute steal at £19.50, especially when a single balm retails at £14.50 - so well worth the money. I'd had my eye on Benebalm for a while as I love tinted lip balms, especially red ones, there just so easy to wear, and make an amazing base for a red lipstick,

Lollitint is the one Benefit tint I've never tried, and I was really surprised at how gorgeous and easy to use it is. Compared to the other tints Lollitint is slightly thicker, I found this useful when applying as a cheek stain as it didn't dry the minute it touched my skin, I had time to pat it into place and leave it to set. As a lip tint it also worked better than thinner tints, as it didn't bleed into an lines on my lips, and it felt slightly moisturising.

The Benebalm is now my all time favourite tinted lip balm, it goes every where with me, Lollitint has blown me away, I've been wearing it for work for a subtle hint of colour on my cheeks without the worry of it slowly wearing off throughout the day - I'll definetely be buying the full size when my cute mini runs out.

What are your thoughts on the Benefit Balms and Tints - do you have any favourites?

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Friday, 23 January 2015

Beauty Tips I Know Now...

At one point in our life we were all terrible at makeup and beauty. I'm sure we all had one thing which we thought, back in the day was our thang - this for me was slapping on layer after layer of eyeshadow, the darker, deeper and more vibrant the better I thought I looked. There are a few things that I wish I knew then that I know now, and here they are...

EYES // oh if only I could tell my younger self to blend, blend, blend my eye shadow - I would have spared myself a lot of embarrassing photographs. I'm pretty sure blending eye shadow was not 'in' when I first started experimenting with eye shadow, but it would have looked a damn sight better than what I was rocking.

BROWS // until the discovery of HD Brows I thought I had a killer set of brows, oh how wrong I was! A stronger squared brow suits me much more than the thin arched brows I have rocked for many years. If only I had resisted the temptation to tweeze my poor eyebrows into early extinction.

LIPS // my only regret with my lips is not getting into lipstick sooner. I love wearing reds and pinks and nudes, and I wish I had started wearing lipstick sooner.

FACE // In my younger years, I'm not proud to admit I had some disastrous foundation shade matching issues - although in my defence there simply wasn't the choice of colours available that there is now. But I wish I had gone to a makeup counter for advice rather than buying a foundation which I wanted my skin tone to be - than actually what it was.

MAKEUP // I shudder at the thought of how much money I've spent on makeup over the years, if only I had know which products to splurge on and invest in, and which to save on and have more choice of. But sadly I bought all things cheap and cheerful, which resulted in a mammoth amount of money being wasted

What are the things you know now, which you wish you had known back then?
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Wednesday, 21 January 2015

MAC Lightness of Being Lightscapade Mineralise Skinfinish | Swatches and Review

 I recently and luckily managed to snag myself Lightscapde from the Lightness of Being Collection at MAC, and I am in love. I have no idea how to describe this powder, other than utter perfection.

As a pale, cool toned gal, I sometimes struggle to find a highlighter that doesn't leave an obvious streak or a muddy looking area on my cheek. So I'm faced with the dilemma of passing up on a gorgeous highlighter or applying less and dulling my glow. Lightscapade is the answer to my dilemma, its a pale, cool toned shade which adds no colour, only a gorgeous shimmer to my cheeks. The base colour is a pale pastel yellow, with hints or orange and pale periwinkle blue - when swirled together it creates the most gorgeous off white silver with lots of shimmer.

I love the packaging for this collection, its very similar to standard MAC packaging, however it is matte and patent black. The finely milled powder is pressed into a chevron pattern, making it so gorgeous to look at you almost don't want to swirl your brush though it.

Have you tried anything in this collection?

On a side note - what are your thoughts on my new blog layout?
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Monday, 19 January 2015

Porcelain Queen Archives | Real Technique Brushes | #4

Today I'm back with another post from my Archives series, I love writing these posts as I enjoy reading the original review and seeing if I still feel the same way about the product now, I also like to see how I am progressing with my blog photography.

Click the links below to read the previous posts in the series

ELF Lip Products #1 | Revlon Lip Butters #2 | Benefit Girl Meets Pearl #3

For today's post I will be looking back on my Real Techniques Brushes and seeing if I still feel the same way. You can read the original review below

Original Real Techniques Brush Review

I still adore these brushes, a few I use on a daily basis, some I use for dramatic eye makeup and some are sadly not used at all.

The Buffing Brush, Blush Brush and the Contour Brush get used on a daily basis, these are my make up staples that I cannot be without. The buffing brush is my all time favourite foundation brush, I may occasionally flirt with other brushes, such as the Sigma F80, but I always find myself coming back to the Buffing Brush. The contour brush I use to set the concealer under my eyes, the small precise tip makes getting right under those peepers a quick and pain free experience - no rough bristles poking your eyes. And lastly the Blush Brush, I use this to powder my face and set my foundation, it litterally takes two seconds with this brush, and the slightly tapered end makes it perfect for powdering around your nose.

I've found recently that I cannot do a full eye make look without the Deluxe Crease brush, it makes blending away harsh lines of eye shadows effortless. The Base Shadow brush I use when I'm in a rush, its perfectly tapered end makes applying a colour into the crease and lid a two second job. And lastly the Accent Brush, I love this for applying foiled pigments and eye shadows, or for adding colour to the lower lash line, its basically the worlds smallest flat shader brush.

The brushes I rarely, if ever use are the Detailer brush, I used to use this for pin point concealer but I quickly became tired of washing it every other day, as it constantly becomes clogged with product. The Pointed Foundation brush I never use, this shape and style foundation brush has become obsolete thanks to kabuki brushes. And lastly the Pin Point Eye Liner brush is another that I never use, I find it way to thick to create a crisp line with, and I'm not into the smudged and smoked liner look.

Which Real Techniques Brushes can and can't you live without?
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Friday, 16 January 2015

Save or Splurge - Liquid Eyeliner

I would dread to know the exact amount of money I have spent on liquid eye liner over the years, but I'm guessing it is an unhealthy and silly amount. But over the years, I have learnt that liquid eye liner really is not worth splurging on.

I've had every type of liquid eye liner, from the foam applicator, to the brush tip, to the pen, ranging in price from a few quid, to a small chunk of my monthly wage. But the truth about liquid eye liner is, all we want is an easy to use applicator and great colour pay off and who says this has to cost the earth?

My current two favourite liquid eyeliner's are the Urban Decay 24/7 liquid eyeliner and the Natural Collection liquid eyeliner, ranging in price from £14 to £1.99. The brushes on both these eyeliner's are absolutely identical, and are both as easy to use as the other, however the differences start in the colour pay off. When using the Urban Decay 24/7 eyeliner I have to apply 2-3 coats depending on how black I want my eyeliner, however when I use the Natural Collection eyeliner one coat and I'm I have the blackest line ever.

I know it feels amazing to have a luxury product, trust me I know, but the cold hard truth is there are some products that you simply do not need to own a luxury version of. If only I'd have known then what I know now, I would have saved myself a pretty penny.

What's your save or splurge item?
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Wednesday, 14 January 2015

ELF 32 Piece Nautral Eyeshadow Palette - A Hidden Gem Under £10

 This little neutral palette has been an everyday make up bag staple for as long as I can remember. It's has a the perfect mix of warm and cool tones, shimmer and matte finishes. And the best part, it retails for less than £10, making it an absolute steal.

I bought this on a whim a while ago, but I find myself using it time and time again. The colour payoff isn't that of a MAC eye shadow, or my beloved Makeup Geek, however for everyday or work it is ideal.

There are so many versatile shades that you can quickly blend over the lid and into the crease. Or if you have five minutes to spare there are some great matte shades which you can run through your crease and then finish off by dusting one of the shimmer shades over your lid. The deeper shades in this palette also make it super easy to take your makeup from day time appropriate to night time glam, although if you're like me, you'll rush home to shower and start fresh and stress out the entire time.

This palette is a hidden gem which for the price and eye shadow variety is hard to beat.

What's your hidden beauty gem?
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Monday, 12 January 2015

January's Beauty Wishlist

January's Beauty Wishlist...

One // NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer // £22
I've heard so many great things about this concealer and it seems to be taking over the beauty world by storm. I see it being used more than MAC Pro Longwear now-a-days.

Two // Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Palette // £39
This palette contains six gorgeous matte contour and highlight shades, which after some research, I'm fairly certain would look great on my pale complexion. This is another cult classic product which is always sold out, so it might be a while before I get chance to try it out.

Three // Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara // £19
This shape of this brush really intrigues me, It looks like the perfect shape to lift and coat each individual lash and give thick and voluminous lashes. Paired with the amazing reviews I've read on this mascara I'm such we'd be a match made in heaven.

Four // Charlotte Tilbury Vintage Vamp Eye Shadow Quad // £38
This is most definitely a luxury product, at £38, but look at those shades, there utterly gorgeous. I do not own any Charlotte Tilbury make up, but I've seen her eye shadow quads being used in a few YouTube tutorials and the colour pay off always looks amazing. 

Five // Mane Tamer // £6.50
As much as I love my beloved Tangle Tamer I think we can all relate when I say they are a nightmare to use in the shower! My hair is super thick and long, so it makes it so frustrating when it slips out of my hand when I'm brushing my hair. I love the idea of this brush, it has the same style bristles, but has a handle!

Six // MAC Vanilla Pigment // £17
Vanilla is one pigment I've always flirted with but never actually committed to buying, but I always find myself flicking through swatches on Instagram. Imagine the cheek bones you'd have with this pigment as your highlight.

What's on your beauty wish list this month?
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Friday, 9 January 2015

How To - Mix and Blend Essential Oils & Apply for Softer Healthier Hair

In the past my hair oiling related posts have been some of my most popular, so today I thought I would share with you how I oil my hair, as can be quite a daunting task. But once you know how the results are amazing.

You can read my last hair oiling post HERE

Bits and pieces you'll need //

A carrier oil - I use coconut, almond or jojoba - if you use coconut you'll need to heat it up, as it is typically sold in a solid form, and work quickly before it hardens again.

An essential oil - I'm currently using chamomile and lavender - only use a maximum of three essential oils at a time, the more you use, the harder it is to know which one works best for your hair.

A mixing bowl preferably one that you don't mind ruining

Measuring spoons or electronic scales

An old towel

Cotton wool balls or a tinting brush - both optional

A plastic brush or one you don't mind ruining

Cling film or a plastic shower cap - both optional

How to //

Step One - measure 20ml of your chosen carrier oil into your mixing bowl

Step Two - add in five drops of your chosen essential oils - this is five drops in total, not five drops of each oil.

Step Three - wrap your self up in your towel - hair oiling is hella messy

Step Four - dip your fingers, cotton ball or tinting brush into the oil and massage gently into your scalp and brush through to the ends of your hair with your brush. Repeat this until your entire scalp is covered with oil. If your have any remaining, you can massage this through the ends, if you don't mix more oils and carry on.

Step Five - give your scalp a good massage, I start at the top of my scalp and work downwards, this will stimulate your scalp and hair follicles - and its also relaxing.

Step Six - tie your hair up in a high bun and leave your oils in for as long as you want. At this point you can also put on your shower cap or wrap your hair in cling film. I typically leave my oil in for the entire day, and wash out before bed. Just remember to rinse your hair for slightly longer, just encase you haven't shampoo'd all the oils out.

I hope this removes any mystery you had about hair oiling, and I hope it inspires you to give it a try.

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Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Glamglow Supermud Clearing Treatment Mask

Before Christmas I managed to snag myself a pot of Glam Glow Super Mud in the pre Christmas sales, and I've been using it religiously ever since.

The amazingly fascinating part of this face mask is when it dries, it drags all the excess oil out of your pores, which then dries a darker colour to the rest of the mask. You end up with a face resembling a dot-to-dot, but you can actually see it working.

The first time I used this mask I applied it everywhere, just to see which areas really needed the attention, and then the times after I just applied where needed. I also apply it with a clean brush to really get the most of the product. I found on my first application I got too close to my under eyes and it made for an uncomfortable twenty minutes, so use on sensitive areas with caution.

I mainly apply around my mouth as this seems to be the hot zone for uneven skin texture on my face, and its really helped to pull out all the deep set imperfections. One thing I will warn you of which I was clueless about before using, is you do have a small breakout after using this treatment, but they heal extremely quick and after the deep set pimple has completely gone. I tend to exfoliate my face before hand and apply when my face is still warm so my pores are open, I leave on for twenty minutes and rinse with cool water and a cotton pad. I do this religiously three times a week and my skin has shown vast improvements for doing so.

This mask is on the higher price point, retailing at £34.99, but for me it was worth every penny as it has done absolute wonders for my skin, what once was bumpy skin now feels amazingly smooth.

Who else has tried this mask? What are your thoughts on this mask?
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Monday, 5 January 2015

The Ever Changing Make Up Bag | January

Its a New Year so I thought it was time for another series, and I couldn't think of a more fun one to do. Basically to keep my make up bag fresh, and to push myself to use the make up I already own, I will add three products to my make up bag at the beginning of the month, and use them throughout that month, I'll add one face product, one lip and one eye product. And that is the jist of The Ever Changing Make Up Bag.

Eyes // I'll be adding my least used Urban Decay palette which is the Naked 3, it has some great shades in there, especially ones suitable for everyday and work. Hopefully I'll fall back in love with this palette

Lips // On the lips is this gorgeous Clinique Chubby Stick in the shade Plushest Punch which I cant remember buying or ever wearing so any use out of this would be a bonus. Its a gorgeous deep fuchsia pink, perfect for this time of year.

Face // Benefit Bella Bamba was once my most loved blush, but sadly it's recently been cast aside for newer products, so i wanted to give this product some love and add a pop of colour to my cheeks this month.
I'll post my progress along with some cheeky snaps next month, and let you know what the new products will be.
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Friday, 2 January 2015

Brush Cleaning | What I Use to Clean My Brushes to Promote Healthy & Happy Skin

Brush cleaning is one of those chores you just have to do, some people have a lackadaisical approach, and others like myself, bite the bullet and get on with it. My skin went to hell and back in December,  the reason I'm putting it down to, is trying out loads of new products and washing my brushes in something new - all which did not agree with my skin one bit. However I found a new method for cleaning my brushes, which I think is contributing towards keeping my skin healthy and happy.

I used to use baby shampoo, but I found I had to lather, rinse, repeat so many times that my fingers resembled prunes after washing one brush. I then switched to antibacterial soap, which I used happily for months, then when I moved into my own house I started using a moisturising soap, it was all I had and lets be real, brush washing isn't a priority when your moving house. After having a shocking skin month I started to use a Tea Tree and Charcoal face wash, which alongside other products has worked absolute wonders for my skin. So I started washing my brushes once a week with this deep cleansing face wash, my brushes have never been cleaner and my skin has never been clearer.

I was amazed at the sheer amount of foundation been rinsed from my brushes, even ones I thought were clean. I saw a pale line of foundation slowly work its way up from the roots of the bristles until it got rinsed out the tips. The brushes were left soft and the bristles actually felt more flexible and moveable without the gross build up of product. 

I'm not sure if using a face wash is the 'correct' method for washing make up brushes, but it cant be much worse than washing your brushes in washing up liquid, or shampoo.

Does anyone else use this method?
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