Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Glossybox August 2014 contents! Sponsored post

This month, Glossybox turns 3 and to celebrate a big birthday like this,  they've kind of stolen my idea for when I reach my next big birthday and had a little work done.  Something nice and subtle that will make people go "Hmmm I don't know what's different but you're looking only fabulous!"  I would like to appear more glowy when I hit my next milestone and Glossybox have decided that matte is the way to go for their August offering.

Now, as beautiful as the Glossybox and I think we are, or will be in my case, they always say that it's what's inside the counts don't they?

Twinkly lights not included!

All That Jazz Cuticle Balm

As a self confessed cuticle picker off-er, I try to make a conscious effort to keep them and moisturised because at the first sign of any dry skin there or around my nails and I can't help but to get a-pickin'.  Such a bad habit but when I make an effort to look after my cuticles and hands in general, it makes for an easy life when it comes to swatching nail polishes!  So this Cuticle Balm from All That Jazz has found a home on my bedside table and it's beeswax and cocoa butter will nourish my skin and so I'll no excuse then, correct?

Figs & Rouge Mini Hand Cream

Continuing on with the hand theme, this mini hand cream from Figs and Rouge is enriched with shea butter (my favourite) and algae extract which makes for soft, pampered hands.  As someone who carries around way too much in her handbag, mini hand creams like this fit into my makeup bag or inside pocket in my handbag, ready to use or offer to a friend who will invariably think I'm a bit mad whipping out a hand cream.

SkinPep Hydra Sun Defence SPF30 Day Cream

I've not heard of Pep Cosmeceuticals before but am loving the sound of their mineral sunscreen which promises not to leave the chalky residue that generally comes with mineral sun creams, thanks to the titanium dioxide.  I'm all for trying new skincare brands and dipping my toe into the waters with smaller sizes like this one.  I haven't tried it yet, but I know, you've probably already guessed but I have it in my handbag in case I'm out and about and need to protect my skin.  Ireland's weather doesn't know what it's doing at the moment, so it's better to be prepared!  I'll give it a go under my foundation though and let you know how I get on and see if the no chalky promise holds true.

Philip Kingsley Elasticizer

You know I love my hair products and the Philip Kingsley Elasticizer sounds right up my street as it's a pre shampoo treatment.  I've not tried something like this before so can't wait to give it a go.  The directions say to wet hair, apply to mid lengths and ends, cover it with a shower cap leave it for 20 minutes before rinsing it out and shampooing and conditioning your hair.  It promises to give unrivalled elasticity, manageability, bounce and shine.  I don't know what having more elasticised hair actually means but I'm all for trying it to see if it'll give me bounce and shine.  I've a video coming up soon on my favourite haircare products so I'll give this a go and we'll see if it makes the cut!

I Love Cosmetics - Strawberries & Milkshake Shimmer & Shine Lip Gloss

This lipgloss isn't too exciting but shhh, don't tell anyone that I put things like this aside for gift bags for my friends at Christmas.  Yes, I said the C word and you'll thank me later when I give you lots of gift ideas like this!

Kryolan Highlighter Cashmere

I've only seen Kryolan being used in YouTube videos and was very excited to see this beaut in the box.  Then I was even more excited that not only was it gorgeous, but it was in a shade that will suit pretty much everyone.  It's a highlighter, but is unlike any other highlighter I have in my stash.  I have secret rage because I have a post on highlighters ready to go and now need to redo the photos to include this because it's pretty perfect.  It gives my skin The Most Gorgeous Glow without looking like a robot and yes, again, it's great for keeping in your makeup bag ready to perk up dull skin.

So what are the winners for me here?  Definitely the Kryolan highlighter and I'll be telling you about that in more detail shortly.  That's worth £12.95 which is more than the price of the box itself which is £10 per month, or €16.  I can't wait to try the Elasticizer by Philip Kingsley and think this weekend I'll have to indulge in a pamper session.

And when getting the link from the Glossybox site, I may have had a sneak peek at the September box and holy moly it's a good 'un... Click here if you dare to a)see what's in the box and b)spoil the surprise for yourself!  You can get a 3 month plan for £9.50 a month, a 6 month plan for £9 a month, a monthly plan for £10 a month, or a 12 month plan for £8.50 a month.

See anything that tickled your pickle?

Monday, September 1, 2014

August beauty favourites and a couple of non beauty favourites!

It's September!  I really do think August went by so quickly don't you?  And I have to admit, I'm looking forward to autumn makeup and fashion, it's terrible, but I love it all so much!  I'm already back in my beloved scarves again and want to get stuck into darker makeup, but I won't wish the time away just yet!

August was a great month for discovering new products and I managed to whittle them down into this video.  I usually make a list as the month progresses and by the end of it, I've a million products and need to try and consolidate them, so that's what I've tried to do here but just know that I have more favourites that will be cropping up on the blog over the coming weeks.

So is there anything that you liked the look of?  Make sure to head over to YouTube to see a list of all products mentioned and links for any corresponding blog posts.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

We're shortlisted in the Image Blog Awards!

This is a little break from normal blogging duties while I make a little request.  See, we've been shortlisted in the Image Blog Awards in the Beauty category!  It's a public vote so if you like what we do on the blog, then we'd love your vote and will be your best friends forever!

Every single blogger in the Beauty category would be a worthy winner and hand on heart, I'd be happy for any of them to win, so be a good child and cast your vote here!  Thank you so much for all the support you've given us over the past 4 years on the blog.  It does a bridie good to have such loyal and supportive readers!

Friday, August 29, 2014

Kiko Nail Polish Shade 238 Martha Red - The Perfect Red!

So I think I've found The Perfect Red Polish... I know...  I've had it for almost a year and only applied it this week.  I'm officially crap at life but sure what can you do?  I bought this shade in the Kiko shop in Alicante last year and had it pegged for Christmas nails which I then forgot all about and it got lost in amongst the many red shades I own.

Then this week I met my friend Ruth for dinner and chats and she had the most gorgeous red Shellac nails on for her holidays which inspired me to paint my own nails red.  Enter shade 238 Martha Red.

Is it not the most gorgeous red shade ever?  Doesn't it look all perfect in the bottle?  But what's it like on the nails?

For a red shade, it's pretty special and if I wasn't taking photos, I would have been happy with just one coat and that's saying sommat!  It's so pigmented, glides on the nails and the formula is one of the best I've ever tried.  Thick enough to coat the nails easily but not too thick that it's gloopy.  The shine is incredible and I've got no topcoat on for the photos, just two coats of the beauteous polish.

This is true and actual love folks.  I've told Joanne to keep an eye out for a Kiko shop in Amsterdam as she's heading there today and will love this shade.  She loves her reds so she does.  

I could post a million photos of this polish but know that you'd think I was demented.  So I'll tell you to go check out the Kiko website because they've no stores here in Ireland at the moment, so we get to online shop.  I really do need to treat myself to more, don't I?  And at €2.90 per bottle and shipping is €7.90 so I'd really have to buy a few bits to make it worth my while wouldn't I?

Thursday, August 28, 2014

L'Oreal Volume Million Lashes So Couture review - before & after photos

Ooh I like the sound of a mascara that promises to dress my lashes in black silk.... Sounds very swish altogether doesn't it?  What I'm on about today is L'Oreal's Volume Million Lashes So Couture mascara which promises no clumps, no stiff lashes and refined volume.  Don't mind if I do.

Regular readers of the blog know I'm all about mascaras and their wands and I have to say that I do enjoy a good plastic bristled wand so I do.  I always feel that it combs through my lashes properly and this one is no different.  It's wider at the base of the brush, meaning you can use the tip to get all your teeny weeny lashes and use the thick end to pack on the mascara to your outer lashes.

Now, this has what they call a Black Silk formula and when I'm applying the mascara to my lashes, I can feel that the formula is different to anything else I've tried.  Let me try to explain.  You know the way some formulas are dry or too wet, or if you're lucky, you get the Goldilocks formula where it's just right.  Well this is that but it also feels different.  Thick, almost gel like, but still doesn't clump.   I wish I could do a better job of explaining it but whatever's in it, feels thick on the lashes and yet doesn't weigh them down.  

Want to see what I mean?

This mascara gives fantastic lift to my lashes.  So much so that the first time I used it, I started singing Lifted by The Lighthouse Family and it's been stuck in my head since.   It's described as giving "refined volume" and that's exactly what I get with this.  It gives me enough volume to use it as a day time mascara and I can go to work happy out.  For nights out though, I need more drama, more everything because when it comes to me and mascara and going out, the bigger the better.

For during the day though, this is a great mascara and not only does it hold up it's end of the bargain in terms of refined volume, but it doesn't clump and doesn't give stiff crispy lashes.  I know this to be true because the other day I forgot I had it on and started rubbing my eyes without copping on that I was wearing it.  And I can attest that it lasts from 5am until bed time without smudging and you can't complain about that eh?

So if you're looking for a solid daytime mascara that gives you lift, separation with no clumping, then check this out.  It's on stands now and will set you back €11.99.  I'm intrigued enough to want to try more of the Volume Million Lashes collection.

Do we likey?

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Four face masks to try from Origins, Emma Hardie and Alpha-H

Mask crusaders, workin' overtime, fighting crime, fighting crime!  Yes, if you know what I'm talking about there then we can be friends because we're around the same age and had brothers who loved 80s cartoons.  There is not a single solitary time where I pick up a face mask and don't start singing this song.  So I basically have a theme tune for when it's time to pamper my skin a bit and I love it!

Recently, I've been trying out some new face masks and thought it was high time you knew about them.  I contemplated including the Clark's Botanicals Deep Moisture mask but felt that I'd wittered on a little too much about it, but know that just because it's not in this mug shot line up doesn't mean I don't use it all the time.  I just needed to let the fantastic four have their moment.

Masks are a quick and easy way to give your skin some much needed oomph and it's a perfect excuse to take it easy for the few minutes that it's on.  At the moment, there really is a mask for every skin issue you might have which is good and don't feel like you have to apply just the one all over your face.  Try applying different ones to different parts of your skin.  Do your cheeks need a bit more moisture than the rest of your face?  Or how about taking care of pores on your schnoz?  Mix and match folks!

Origins GinZing Refreshing Face Mask - €30

Origins have extended their GinZing range to include a refreshing face mask and it makes me happy when brands do this with ranges I love.  I use the GinZing face wash every second day or so and have been haring through the GinZing moisturiser like there's no tomorrow.  The refreshing face mask is designed to inject a bit of oomph back into dull skin and the citrusy scent helps lift your mood too.  Now, masks like this are good for the morning time when you want to look fresh and awake, when you feel anything but.  Coffee beans helps energise the skin while cucumber refreshes and Hoelen Mushroom soothes and this cooling gel texture feels lovely on the skin.  I like to apply it at the weekend if I'm messing around the house because I'm a disaster and know that if I put this on during the week, it'll be all over my work clothes and they'll be refreshed when it's me who needs it!  I leave it on for at least 10 minutes and if I haven't managed to get it all over myself, I tissue the remainder off and I look and feel more perky in the face department!

Alpha H Balancing and Pore Refining Mask - €32

I do like a good pore refining mask because the pores on either side of my nose could be used to store things they're that big.  This mask from Alpha H not only helps to shrink the appearance of them, but it manages to do so without stripping my skin.  It's the only mask I've tried apart from the Ren Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask where I've seen a dramatic result after one use.  It's clay based which makes me happy because I know it's going to work hard at removing gick from my skin and when I say gick, that's the scientific term for impurities and toxins.  It smells like lavender and I almost feel it to be a waste if I apply it before bed because when I use it, I want to show off my skin.  That or apply makeup because it sits nicely on my face what with having constricted pores and all.  Love it.

Emma Hardie Amazing Face Age Support Instant Radiance Mask 

If you're looking for something that's a proper luxurious treat for your skin while knocking a few years off yourself then this one from Emma Hardie is worth a look.  It has the texture of silk on the skin.  Silk that smells gorgeous.  It has Hyaluronic acid which we all know now means increased moisture along with Paper Mint Extract and Persea Fruit Extract which work on toning and firming the skin which I'm all about at the moment.  You can either apply it to your face and leave it for 5-10 minutes before rinsing it off or leave it on overnight as a treatment.  You know me and my love of not having to wash things off and watch them go down the sink, so I apply a layer, let it sink in while I read a book (currently reading the latest Bridget Jones book and poor Bridget... I won't spoil it but man!)  When I wake up the next morning, my skin feels touchably soft and I look far more awake than I should be at 5am.

Dr Andrew Weil for Origins Mega-Mushroom Skin Relief Face Mask - €47

This is the only mask of the four that I haven't tried because I don't have sensitive skin but wanted to give you the heads up.  If you're someone who suffers with redness or blotchiness and have sensitive skin that needs a bit of TLC then this could be the one for you.  Not only does it help soothe the skin but it also helps to replenish moisture and rebuilds a protective barrier to help prevent any future flare ups.  I'll be gifting this to a sensitive skinned friend who shall give it a go and report back.  I love the Mega-Mushroom range and might give this a sneaky go for the craic and see what happens.

If you're a face mask fiend then make sure you check out the rest of my blog posts on masks.  This post was inspired and requested my Auntie Phyllis who got me into makeup and beauty yonks ago!  She was asking me about face masks at Joanne's wedding so Phyllis, if you're reading this then let me know which one you want to try!

What face mask do you rate at the moment?  Let me know in the comments like a good child.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Get ready with me - wedding style!

Recently I attended my first ever wedding as a guest when my cousin Alan got married to the gorgeous Orla.  Usually when it comes to weddings, I have bridesmaid duties so it was such a treat to sit back, relax and enjoy the day!  Orla was absolutely stunning and Alan made me feel old by getting married, but it was a fantastic day all round.

I decided to film a get ready with me video on the day for the craic as I've never done one of those before and love watching them.  So take a look at me lashing on the makeup, doing the hair and showing off the outfit!

Let me know if you like these kinds of chatty videos and I'll try and do more.  And for a full list of products I used, check out the description box over on YouTube.  I used some tried and tested favourite and some newbies that did me proud.  My makeup stayed in place all day and the only thing I needed to touch up was my lippie.  Happy days!
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