Sunday, 28 November 2010

Accessorize Storm Nail Polish

Storm (Shade 49)
A perfect name for this colour - this is a beautiful pewter grey with a purple tone. Good coverage with two coats and the finish is pearly with a slight metallic edge. Absolutely love it.

I am finding it hard to show restraint with this range as there are definitely some very tempting shades - next up will be a stunning sparkly number from the Illusion range of nail polish.

Disclaimer: Purchased by me

Friday, 26 November 2010

Accessorize Makeup - Nail Polish in Dove

Dove (shade 45) lies somewhere between grey and silver and has a slight pearl finish which gives it a nice dimensional quality. The pic is with three coats (the crappy finish on the pinky finger is a gloopy basecoat rather then the polish). It was still a little transparent with 2 coats so I've applied the extra to give it a better finish. Although I also bought another colour called Storm (which I'll post about later) that applied well in 2 coats so I think the formula varies a little between shades. Application was okay with a standard shape brush, but I think the brush could be a tiny bit more firmer, to me it seems a little bit soft.

It has lasted rather well with hardly any tip wear in 3 days but I have used inm Out The Door topcoat over it (which may knock off Seche Vite's crown). But even still, it holds up well against other brands with the same topcoat.

The bottle looks small but it's actually 10ml in size for £4 so it's not too bad. I think the saving grace in these are the colours as there is a good variety of some interesting looking shades that I don't think I've come across before but also colours that could well be dupes for other brands like there is a greige shade that is along the lines of Barry M Mushroom and also a very bright lilac purple that reminds me of Illamasqua's Jo'Mina.

Disclaimer: Purchased by me

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Accessorize Makeup: The Eyeshadows and a Little EOTD

Accessorize makeup landed in my local Superdrug recently and as I wasn't sure when this was going to be available I was very excited to see it in real life as from glimpses from other blogs it looked like a promising range. On the face of it, it looks like how I would expect Accessorize makeup to look as it has quite pretty embellishment on product packaging which has the whole feel of the brand. I was pleasantly surprised at the price as I expected the items to cost a bit more but a lot of the products are around the £4/£5 mark.

The items that really grabbed my attention are the eyeshadows and the nail polishes as there are quite a good selection of interesting looking shades. The baked blushes/bronzes also looked lovely but on this occasion I didn't get any of those.

Illusion and Icon Eyeshadows
I am very impressed with these - they are a good size at 2.5g each and the quality is smooth (slightly buttery), well pigmented and there is a beautiful array of colours of available.
At £4 each I think these are very good value for money and I certainly would love to get some more of these.

Illusion Eyeshadow: 18 Olive
Icon Eyeshadow: 12 Rich Earth
Illusion Eyeshadow: 15 Vintage Rose
L-R: Rich Earth, Olive, Vintage Rose
L-R: Rich Earth, Olive, Vintage Rose

Merged Eyeshadows
These are similar to something like MAC's mineralize eyeshadows but personally I think these are nicer as there are no chunky bits of glitter. They are a bit deceptive in that when you feel them in the pan they don't feel as smooth or buttery, but when applied to the skin the pay-off is very good - one swipe gives a good level of colour.
These are £4.50 for 3g.
Shade 6 Cocoa
Shade 1 Gunmetal

Top: Cocoa, Bottom: Gunmetal
Top: Cocoa, Bottom: Gunmetal

I did a quick look with Rich Earth on outer half of lid, then Vintage Rose on inner part of lid (mascara is NARS Larger Than Life Lengthening):

The wear on these is good as even on my oily lids there was only a little creasing at the end of the day.

Overall I am very impressed with these, next on the list to review is the nail polish so hopefully the post for that will go up later in the week.

Disclaimer: Purchased by me

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Nails of Last Week: Andrea Fulerton Mischa Nail Polish

Yep, another Andrea Fulerton purchase (I tried to be good, I got just the one polish), this time it's the nail colour in Mischa.
Out of the shades I saw on the stand in Superdrug, this was the one that struck me as more unique, and with it being the time of year for all things glitzy (and rainy), this fits the mood perfectly.

It's a dark grey shade packed with very fine gold shimmer - but as it's so densely packed, I can't quite tell if it's all gold as in the light I can pick up hints of red and blue. It's rather deceptive and quite complex as in some artificial lights it can lean towards a tiny bit taupe or khaki but  it is grey with a very subtle (so subtle I may have imagined it) blue undertone. 

These pics are with 2 coats polish and inm Out The Door as the topcoat and also after almost 4 days wear, hence the tip wear (sorry no fresh pics). This applied well with no streaks but it does require 3 coats to be completely opaque.

With the topcoat over it, it does feel smooth on nails and not gritty and it removed ok at the end of the week.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Reaching for... Rouge Bunny Rouge Devotion Ink Quartz Eyeliner in Anthracite Essence

I don't usually go for liquid liner, much preferring gel liners as they are quite easy to use and last the whole day. Lately I have been reaching for Rouge Bunny Rouge Devotion Ink Quartz Eyeliner in Anthracite Essence (and breathe) and I thought I'd give it a mention.

This is standard looking dip eyeliner, and if you shake it you can hear that there are little balls in the well. This is a deep black with fine quartz particles that give it a pretty shimmering effect but in a subtle and less chunky glitzy way.

What I really like is the brush - it's thin and flexible and allows me to glide the liner on with ease and get a good thin line as well as a thicker line. As this flows nicely it makes it easier when trying to get a winged look on the outer corner. Also it's not scratchy which is something I find with other brushes when lining near the inner corner.

It has the long-wearing qualities of a gel liner but feels much more light and gentle on the eyes.
At £27 it's expensive, but after having used it and seeing the difference in quality I would definitely repurchase this.

Disclaimer: Purchased by me

Sunday, 14 November 2010

NARS Downtown Lipgloss Look

I am slowly getting more and more into NARS, and with their new collection I bought my first lipgloss from them In Downtown.
I was immediately drawn to this when I tested in out on counter - it's quite an unusual soft purple shade with lilacy pink fine shimmer, unlike anything I have at present.

The light picks up the pink tones in the gloss

This lipgloss is slightly sticky which I don't mind so much (I just slap on some Lanolips 101 underneath - love:) but it does hold well on lips and lasts quite well.

For me this shade sits well in my 'comfort zone' as it's not so bright and only a little bolder then my natural lip colour.

I've done a look which uses the lilac tones as inspiration for the eyes:

Products used:
MAC Studio Sculpt concealer NW35 slightly as base and a little under eyes
NARS Nepal eyeshadow all over lid
NARS Mekong eyeshadow as the thicker line along lid
NARS Pearl Beach cream eyeshadow pressed ontop of the Mekong and Nepal to give a lilac tone to the eye
Rouge Bunny Rouge Devotion Ink Quartz Eyeliner in Anthracite Essence to finely line lash line
No7 Exceptional Definition Mascara (used more on outer corner to give a more winged look) and only on upper lashes.

The complete look ( with the NARS Downtown lipgloss on lips)

What I've used on face:

NARS Sheer Glow foundation - Barcelona
MUFE HD powder
NARS Douceur Blush

Overall I am pleased with this purchase as it is a shade I would wear day-to-day as well as with more dramatic looks. It sort of reminds a little of a MAC 3D Glass I once had called Algorithm (although I think that was sheerer and didn't have shimmer).

Saturday, 13 November 2010

Topshop MakeUp Kohl Eyeliners: Saddle & Petrol

Top - Petrol, Bottom - Saddle

There are some lovely gems in Topshop's makeup line, and these eyeliners are a few of the items that grabbed me when I swatched them instore.

Left - Petrol, Right - Saddle

Saddle is a beautiful brown with faint bronze/copper tones that give a soft metallic shimmer to the shade. It stays well throughout the day without creeping into other areas but it is also great to smudge and create more smokey type looks.

Petrol is a deep teal sort of colour without any noticeable shimmer. I love coloured eyeliners and this one is beautiful.

Top - Saddle, Bottom - Petrol

Both the shades are soft to use, glide on quite well (although not as much as UD 24/7) and have great pigmentation.

I bought these both from Topshop Oxford Circus.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Ren ClearCalm 3 Update


It's been about 2 and a half months now since I started using Ren's ClearCalm 3 range (4 week review here), so thought I'd do an update.

Since my last review I have finished up my bottle of the Anti-Blemish Clay Cleanser, I used it every morning and most evenings so it lasted about 2 months. This has been pleasant to use and I like that it can be rinsed off clean with water rather then using a cloth (this is one thing I like in particular with Ren's cleansers).
I wasn't blown away initially with this, but after getting through my bottle of this I have come to rather like it as when washed off it helps a bit to make skin calmer and softer.

This *almost* equals one of my favourite cleansers which is Ren's Hydra-Calm one but the only thing that holds it back is the scent, while not at all unpleasant in anyway, I really love the scent of Hydra-Calm as I find it very comforting where as this doesn't grab me. To me scent is just as important as the performance, often I am drawn back to repurchasing products because not only were they effective, but I remember the smells and think how much I loved using them. I would still repurchase this at some point (I have some other cleansers on my 'to try' list though:).

The Anti-Blemish Day Fluid I continued to use up until 3 weeks ago when I wanted to see how I would fare without it so I tried using something else but unfortunately that didn't seem to agree with me so I am back to using this.
It works well under makeup and now that the weather is colder, this seems to be holding up well in the hydration stakes and I still have a lot left - about 3/4 in the bottle.

The Anti-Blemish Treatment Mask I use now once a week rather then twice as I have about 1/4 left and don't want to run out so quickly. My opinion of this hasn't changed from before - it's still a fab purifying mask and I would repurchase.

About 2 weeks ago I got a couple of large spots from what I think was experimenting with other primers/foundations/sunscreens (this was when I was not using the day fluid), so I went back to using my prescribed topical Duac gel for acne at night and I couldn't use the Replenishing Night Serum when using the Duac. In the few extra weeks I did use it I didn't see anything different to my last review.

What I have noticed is that before when I used my Duac gel to control my acne, it could be a little drying, especially around the mouth area so I could on occasion get slight flakiness. But when I use the ClearCalm 3 range I no longer get the dryness from the Duac gel and that is probably where this range helps me the most is with the texture and balancing of my skin as to be honest the visible differences are not huge, but when I feel my skin it does feel smoother and softer like it seems to help get rid of the flakiness and dead skin.
This doesn't make me want to throw out my exfoliator though as I love a good scrub, but I like the general feel of my skin and it makes applying makeup much nicer as I have a better canvas to work with.

Overall this range doesn't prevent me from getting spots, but I like what it does for the condition of my skin so I would add it to my favourites (the jury is out on the night serum for now:).

All products purchased by me and this is my own experience with the range. 
Everyone is different.

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Une MakeUp Review: Mineral Foundation, Skin Glow Pencil & Lip-Toned Colour

I like the concept of Une makeup, it is clean and fuss-free as well using more natural ingredients in the products. I bought a few products a while back from Superdrug to try so here are my thoughts.

100% Mineral Foundation

I am a fan of mineral makeup, being acne-prone I feel I don't need to worry if mineral foundations are clogging my pores and making me breakout. They seem to help keep my skin in check so I was interested to see how this fares.

I've got the shade M08, which is quite yellow based and blends well into the skin. I would say this shade for me is just a tiny bit dark if I use it heavily, otherwise it's not a bad shade match (my neck area is slightly lighter then my face).  The coverage is light-medium so it's not good for covering up any blemishes but it does even out the skintone and looks natural. It's finely milled and has no noticeable shimmer/glowy particles as it's more of a natural finish. I usually use my Ecotools retractable kabuki to apply this or my ELF powder brush if I want more coverage. It lasts well throughout the day but I do touch up my t-zone as it gets oily (this happens to me with most foundations). Overall it's a good natural and lightweight foundation but personally I like more coverage so I probably wouldn't repurchase it.

Lip-Toned Colour L05

L05 is a soft warm pink shade that brightens my lips up a little and I would imagine could suit a variety of skintones.
I really like this lipstick, it's quite creamy and the shade is flattering and just adds a good wash of colour that isn't too sheer or too full-on. They are also a bit moisturising so don't dry out my lips either.
Being a bit of a neutral lippie-lover the Lip-Toned Colours are the items that appeal to me most in the range so I would buy more shades.

Swatched along with the Skin Glow pencil:

Skin Glow Pencil in G04

I am not sure what the purpose of this pencil is as the name isn't exactly clear but I've been using this as a concealer as I quite like the precision of a pencil to dot onto small spots.
It's a bit creamy and blends well but it doesn't really last on me and even though smooth, the texture isn't quite creamy or dense enough for serious spot concealment. I think this would be better as a brightening eye pencil to line the lower lash line with. Overall it's not bad but it's not for me.

In general I think it's a bit of a hit and miss with this range but there are definitely some items worth checking out.

Monday, 8 November 2010

Nail Art with Andrea Fulerton Stripe & Sparkle in Patti

This is the look I've created with Andrea Fulerton's Stripe & Sparkle in Patti that I posted about previously here (please excuse the red around the cuticles - the previous polish I had on stained a bit). With me not being particularly ambidextrous, I've done a simpleish wavy line design which I could replicate as well on my right hand. That's the thing I tend to forget when attempting nail art - I can do something good on my left hand but it can look a bit pants on my right hand.

I have used OPI's You Don't Know Jacques as a base colour which in real life looks a bit darker then the pic so the contrast between the YDKJ and the black is not as strong.
This is quite a fun product to use as I quite like sprinkling the glitter over the polish as it's a cute pepper-style sprinkler.

The holographic glitter reflects red, green & blue in the light
Overall this is a great product and I am very tempted to buy more colours but I am on a bit of a nail polish low/no-buy at the moment. I think I may break it with this range;)

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Anti-Crease Combo for Oily Eyelids

I have very oily eyelids and find it hard to make my eyeshadow last all day. Usually by lunchtime it has creased or faded - this doesn't bother me so much when I've used a single colour on my eye, I just use my finger and blend again but when I've made an effort with different colours and blending, it can be a bit frustrating when the look doesn't last the whole day.

In the past I have used Urban Decay's Eyeshadow Primer Potion but even though it works ok (sometimes even UDPP is no match for my eyelids), it's not something I find pleasant to use as it makes my eyelids feel dry and I can't blend eyeshadow as well. Personally I don't like how eyeshadow can sometimes look over this - slightly drier as well.

Through a bit of trial and error, I've found some products that work well for me which are:

E.L.F Mineral Eyeshadow Primer
Bloom Eye Paint in Chocolate

E.L.F Mineral Eyeshadow Primer
A standard lipgloss style package with a sponge tip applicator - so nothing fancy here but I like the basic style with the matt plastic lid. The texture of E.L.F Mineral Eyeshadow Primer feels smooth, blends well (I just use my finger) and even though dries to a matt finish, it doesn't make my eyelids feel dry.


The colour is a pale flesh sort of colour with a slight peach tone. My face has quite strong yellow-tones, but my eye area is darker then my face, and I find that peach/apricot tones are much better suited to my eye area as they don't look ashy like yellow tones do.
I guess this doesn't matter too much as eyeshadow is going on top, but it's something that I prefer over UDPP.

Bloom Eye Paint in Chocolate
On the face of it, it seems to be a dupe for a MAC Paint, but comparing it to MAC, the packaging is the only similar thing about it.
This is a lovely creamy texture that allows enough time to blend well and dries to a matt finish that doesn't look dry or chalky. Chocolate is a mid-brown/beige with a slight golden tone that stops it from looking completely flat. This colour is very close to the natural colour of my lids so I like using this to even out the lids and give a subtle hint of beige/golden tone.

Both products are long-lasting, and if your eye area wasn't particularly oily I think it would be fine to use one or the other but I like using the E.L.F primer first, then putting the Bloom eye paint on top, then using whatever eyeshadow over that.

Top - Bloom Eye Paint Chocolate, Bottom E.L.F Mineral Eyeshadow Primer

It does seem like a bit of a faff using two base products rather then one, but as the products are quite quick and pleasant to use, and make my eyeshadow last all day I don't care.

The E.L.F. primer is a bargain at £3.50, and the Bloom Eye Paint I bought from Superdrug for £5 (I bought this on offer as the full price I think is £10).

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

A Little Nail Art: Models Own Grace Green & Andrea Fulerton Nail Tattoo

Models Own Grace Green - I really like this green, it's just murky enough without going too grey and the formula on this one is better then some of my other Models Own polishes as it flows well making application much easier.

I missed out Chanel's Khaki Vert but after seeing it on counter I prefer the Model's Own and even though they are not the same this makes a nice alternative. When I popped into Topshop later I saw they have a khaki green colour called Utilitarian which also looks like a lovely shade as well (which I am very tempted by).

This is two coats with Andrea Fulerton nail tattoo applied on top then Gloss Up Overcoat applied as a topcoat to seal everything.

The nail tattoo is quite straightforward to apply - it is self adhesive and there is a little allowance in that you can peel it off if you misplace it a bit. I used a craft knife to lift the tattoo from the card as they are rather small designs.

Here is a close up:

Both pics are after 2 days wear so there is very slight tip wear and a tiny bit of the chain design has come off on one nail but overall I am pleased with how well this has lasted (2 days is good for my nails).

The Andrea Fulerton Gloss Up Overcoat is a nice consistency - not too thick and applies well.
But this is no Seche Vite as it doesn't dry fast and is not as glossy. I will try with some other polishes to see what the wear is like across other brand polish.