Saturday, August 23, 2014

Vlog #8 - Joanne & Will become tourists in Ireland!

So recently Joanne and Will had a lovely weekend away in Ireland and decided to vlog it.  Now I want to go and do the rope bridge and Giant's Causeway!  Watching vlogs like this makes me want to visit more places in Ireland and just means I need to be more organised and just do it!  They're mad into going places every weekend and if I wasn't tied to the laptop doing bloggy stuff, I'd be right there with them, so for now, they can do the travelling and I can watch from the comfort of my couch.

Where should they visit next?

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Thursday, August 21, 2014

Autumn goodies from Stella & Dot - photos galore!

If there's one thing that will bring me and Joanne into total agreement, it's jewellery.  We love it.  We have too much of it and yet still buy more.  Joanne first introduced to me the brand Stella & Dot recently when she bought this necklace and still wears it all the time.  She doesn't usually come to events or launches with me but with one mention of Stella & Dot and she was there!

I'm going to let the photos do the talking folks because there are some truly fabulous pieces on the site right now.  I say this because I took all of the photos and have been stalking them on the website as I wait until payday!

Stella & Dot Tallulah Bib Necklace - €148
The Tallulah Bib Necklace is absolutely stunning and Joanne wants it to wear with a leather jacket she doesn't own yet but feels that they are destined to be together!  It has beads, it has crystals, it has glass beads and it has to be on Joanne's neck soon.

Stella & Dot Tallulah Bib Necklace - €148
The Helena Necklace is my type of statement necklace.  It's understated, relatively simple and the balance of the vintage gold combined with the sparkles is perfection.  I need it.

Stella & Dot Helena Necklace - €128
Stella & Dot Helena Necklace - €128

In the summer I'm obsessed with aqua coloured stones in jewellery, especially necklaces because I wear a lot of white despite being super messy and clumsy.  I feel aqua adds interest to an outfit without much effort.  The Somervell Necklace is aqua-tastic!

Stella & Dot Somervell Necklace - €54
For something a bit more dramatic, then the Elodie Necklace is the one for you with it's blue hues mixed with a pop of bright yellow.  The want is strong with this one...

Stella & Dot Elodie Necklace - €89
The Christina Link necklace comes in silver and gold and mixes metal with sparkles.  It's a great one if you favour the more simplistic look, or if you like to pile stuff on like we do, it makes a great layering piece.  More is more with jewellery!

Stella & Dot Christina Link Necklace - €79
Now, the Lila Necklace is very me in that it's chunky yet lovely.  It's a neutral necklace and I sound like yer man from Bridget Jones' Diary when I say that it's the kind of thing that one can wear with anything to any occasion!

Stella & Dot Lila Necklace - €69
On to some delicate pieces.  This wishbone charm with it's Pavé detailing has been teamed with the Signature ID charm and looks perfect layered with Joanne's own turquoise necklace and orange top.  Dainty, delicate and great for fiddling with if you're anyway like me!

Stella & Dot Wishbone charm €28, Signature ID Charm €28
Stella & Dot Wishbone charm €28, Signature ID Charm €28
Next up is this Pavé Spear Pendant Necklace in rose gold.  If you like your geometric shapes than you'll love this and it's much more sparkly in real life.

Stella & Dot Pave Spear Pendant Necklace - €59
Continuing on the Pavé theme, this Pavé Chevron Necklace takes the effort out of thinking about what to layer with it because it's done it all for you.  Even better is that you can unclip any of the strands to wear just one layer or even two.  Multifunctional and that makes it all the more justifiable when considering a purchase.  Just sayin'.

Stella & Dot Pave Chevron Necklace €79
For those who love a bit of arm candy, check out these beauts.  Joanne is a bracelet fiend and I had to prise these off her wrist after taking the photos!
Top Row: Stella & Dot Becca Bracelet €89 (L) Cady Wrap Bracelet €59 (R)
Bottom Row: Stella & Dot Arrison Stretch Bracelet €29 (L) Pyramid Stud Cuff €44 (R)
And who stops at layering necklaces?  Tara O'Connor had these draped casually on her arm...

Here at Lovely Girlie Bits, we love our earrings.  And when I say we, I mean Joanne and I rob them from her.  Those are the rules of being the older sister, so in your face Joanne.  You buy, I rob, the end.

Get a load of these guys and see those ones on the top left?  The Melanie Chandelier earrings? You can take them apart and get three different looks out of them.  They're like the Transformers of the earring world except they're not robots in disguise.  Just one pair of earrings that can turn into 3!  And the ones on the top right, the Pop Geo earrings can be worn in two different ways.  Genius!
Stella & Dot Melanie Chandelier earrings €59 (L), Pop Geo €49 (R)
Stella & Dot Janice Studs Mint €24, Hematite studs €28 (L), Pave Spear Earrings €49 (R)
That's just the tip of the Stella & Dot iceberg folks and I suggest you hotfoot it over to the website and start making your wish list!  We shall be picking up a few bits ourselves in the near future so stay tuned for that.

Did you see anything you fancied?  To the comments!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

L'Occitane Cherry Blossom EDT review - you need this

So recently I raved about L'Occitane's Neroli & Orchidee scent and if it's possible, I love another scent from the brand even more.  We're going to be talking about L'Occitane's Cherry Blossom fragrance, or what I like to call it myself - one of the most gorgeous fragrances of the year so far and it's going to take something very special to knock it out of the top spot.

I spoke a bit about it in my July Favourites video and I held it up to my head a lot to truly explain to you how much I love it and yet I felt that it thoroughly deserved it's own post because you need to try this if you haven't already.  If you have tried it already, then why haven't you told me about it?!

Cherry Blossom.  It's fruity but not too fruity, floral but not too floral, has a light, airy, fresh and delicate feel to it and it's a clear winner in work too.  Every single time I spray it in work, someone will walk by the office and say "Oooooh you smell nice, what is that" to which I respond "Here, put this on you now and go in peace to love and smell gorgeous".  It's this type of generous behaviour that has half the bottle already gone, but I've explained this before that when I love something so much like this, I want to tell everyone about it.  I want everyone to experience it, to enjoy it and it's an added bonus that I get to work with bridies that smell delightful!

Now I don't know what Cherry Blossoms actually smell like but if it's like this scent, then I'm hooked and need to go wherever they are.  It also has notes of freesia and lily of the valley, balanced out with amber and musk.  It has an air of freshness that will lift your spirits, and really is a delicate and feminine scent that is an outright winner especially with the girls at work.  It lasts for a couple of hours before I need to sploosh myself again and once I do, all is well in the world.

L'Occitane has an entire collection in the Cherry Blossom family and finding that link for you there has just showed me that they have a rollerball version!  I'm 100% getting that next time I'm in town because I've been carrying the big bottle around with me all the time, even to my cousin's wedding last weekend!

If you're looking for a pretty, light, slighly fruity, floral scent that won't offend anyone in the office, then you need to give this a whiff because I'm hooked!  And give me another few weeks and I guarantee I'll be finished this bottle of perfume.  I've only ever finish one bottle of perfume before, so this is huge, considering I'm a perfume junkie/collector!  At €45.50 for 75 ml, I'll be repurchasing this when I run out, which will be in about 4.5 weeks by my calculations and inability to leave home without it.

Cherry Blossom.  Go check it out and thank me later.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Lipstick Queen Liptropolis - Upper East review, photos

Uh oh... I'm in trouble... I've fallen for a new to me make up brand, Lipstick Queen and now I want more.  When I was in Space NK a couple of weeks ago, swatching away to my heart's content and came across this beauty, I wasn't expecting to go all googly eyed over it because yes, it looked nice in the bullet, but once applied to the back of my hand, all bets were off.  I pretended that I was going to think about it when in reality, I was ready to hand over my €21 then and there.

Upper East is described as a delicate nude which isn't what I'd call it at all at all, but that's what the Lipstick Queen herself Poppy King says!  I love how she describes sitting on a New York subway and being able to tell what neighbourhood someone is from based on their lip colour and that's what the Liptropolis Volume 1 collection is all about, with three lipsticks to represent three different neighbourhoods.  I'm obsessed with all things New York and had no idea about the background of the collection when I was investigating.  Is that not meant to be?  Brought together by love of a coral lippie.  Not nude.  It's coral.

See?  This pinky coral shade is meant to make you feel like you're from the Upper East Side and while I'm as far removed as the elegant ladies that live there, I can wear this and pretend I swan around New York in stilettos and dresses, shopping, having cocktails and living the life.  When in actual fact I'm hoofing around the place in jeans and runners, exhausted from it all!  Ah you'll see in our New York vlogs in November lads and while I might bring this shade with me just because, it'll be the only fancy schmancy thing of the trip!

The formula is hard to explain and isn't like anything else in my collection.  Famous last words.  But hear me out.  It's creamy with a slight shiny finish and it feels quite thick on the lips when you press them together, but once it's in place, you can't tell you're wearing anything other than a lip balm.  It's moisturising, hydrating, lasts about 3 hours on me before the shine fades and I'm left with lightly stained lips.  

Wasn't this shade made for me?  Yes, I know.  I will be heading back to Space NK to test out more products from the brand soon but if you're on the market for a new lippie, then you can order this here or head into the new Space NK shop on Grafton Street and try not to buy all the things!

Have you tried anything from Lipstick Queen?  What do I need to try next?

Monday, August 18, 2014

Autumn eyes with The Body Shop

It's happening.  There's a chill in the air in the mornings and the days are getting shorter which heralds the arrival of autumn.  I must say, I do love playing around with autumnal shades of make up as it makes my eyes much greener and sure I'll use any excuse to pack on more makeup!

I was sent some products from The Body Shop's autumn 2014 collection recently and have enjoyed playing around with everything and creating different looks with them.  Of course, I do love a good smokey eye and the Colour Crush eyeshadows are perfect for that.  They're easy to work with, are blendable and at €12.95, are great value.  I have annotations throughout the video telling you which shade I've used where, so go and watch it!

I used 4 of the 6 shades in the collection to achieve this quick and easy look and teamed it up with the Smoky 2 in 1 Gel Liner in Brown, which is perfect for this look.  It also comes in black if you want something more dramatic and these are €15 a pop.  I've been loving the Instablur Eye primer as an eyeshadow base and it works well at stopping creasing on my lids for a good 6 hours!

I also used the Honey Bronze bronzing powder for old time's sake because when you're doing a strong eye like this, it's good to warm up the face a bit.  At least it is for me.  Otherwise my eyes look like dots.  I used the Tea Tree Flawless BB Cream (€13.50) to even out my completion and for pale ladies out there, shade 01 is a lovely light shade that should work well on your skin.  It's aimed at blemish prone skin and keeps shine away nicely.

Finally I used one of the new Colour Crush Shine Lipsticks in shade 140 (€12.95) which is basically Nars Orgasm in lipstick form.  This range of lippies is super moisturising on the lips and I've been haring my way through a coral one I got earlier this year. You know me and my corals!

The look took me about 15 minutes to film and that included faffing about trying to find stuff and make sure I was in the shot!  But what I'm basically telling you is that if I can do this look, then so can you.  Cheesy, I know but it's true!

Thanks for watching the video and make sure you subscribe to our channel!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Interview with Seventeen Brand Ambassador Vanesa Guallar & lots of festival tips & makeup tricks!

Electric Picnic is fast approaching and that means one thing.  Get your wellies and raincoat ready!  Ah no, hopefully the weather will be nice this year and if you're going to Electric Picnic then we have some makeup tips from celebrity makeup artist and SEVENTEEN Brand Ambassador Vanesa Guallar.  I asked her the hard hitting questions that we all need to know the answers of, like would she prefer to have her skirt stuck in her knickers or have lipstick on her teeth.  All very relevant in 2014 you know.  Take it away Vanesa!

I've never been to a festival.  I know, I'm scarlet for myself.  So as a festival virgin, what are the absolute must haves I should bring with me in my makeup bag that's probably going to get soaked anyway because of all the rain that inevitably falls whenever there's a festival on?

Preparation is key for festivals and the last thing you want is a make-up bag that's weighing your down.  My absolute must haves are:

SEVENTEEN Skin Wow Primer €7.59 which will help give you a luminous glow and make you look like you've had a full night's sleep, even if you haven't.

SEVENTEEN Falsifeye HD Mascara €8.89 which gives you a bold look with lashes that last all day and night (review here). (This is Karen here - I need to just tell you all that this mascara has now become my favourite drugstore mascara to date.  I know.  That's huge.  That's what she said.  Ok back to the interview!)

SEVENTEEN Stay Pout Lipstick €5.69 gives you an intense colour that stays put all day long.  It also has moisturising waxes that prevent the lips drying out - essential when outside all day.

Speaking of rain, what are your favourite waterproof makeup products that will stay put and won't have us looking like pandas?

If you worry about the rain, always use a waterproof mascara like SEVENTEEN Waterproof Mascara €5.99.  It's smudge proof meaning you won't look like a panda if the rain comes down mid festival.  It also lengthens the lashes and lasts all day.

I'm all about the summer glow but find it hard to restrain myself when it comes to highlighter and end up shining bright like a diamond, sometimes because I've caked the highlighter on, sometimes because I haven't used a mattifying powder.  What are your favourite glow inducing products that won't make it look like I'm a sweaty Betty?

You need the SEVENTEEN Skin Wow Primer and you need to make sure not to use it in the T zone area.  Control it and only use it on the cheek bones, the brow bone and in the inner corner of the eye as that makes the eye look brighter and if you want an extra glow, use it on the shoulders and collor bones.  If you have oily skin, dab a bit of powder on the T zone area to make sure you don't look sweaty.

Back in the day, I loved wearing frosty blue eyeshadow from lashes to brows and the fact that there's no photographic evidence of that helps me sleep at night.  What's the biggest beauty disaster you've ever had?

FAKE TAN!  I fake tanned my whole body when I was 15 years old BUT I forgot tot tan my hands so it looked like I was wearing an orange body suit and white gloves - serious NO NO!

This is not Karen

What's your favourite summer makeup trend that you find yourself sporting these days and how can us amateurs copy you?

Bright red and orange lipstick.  It automatically makes you look healthy and it brightens your look.  It's easy to apply and instantly gives the effect that you've made a serious effort with minimal time spent.

Summer is flying by so quickly.  Give it a couple of weeks and the X Factor auditions will be on which we all know heralds the arrival of autumn, so to help us come to terms with that, are there any autumn trends that we can look forward to?

I think autumn is the makeup transition from summer to winter so stick to your bronzer for as long as possible to extend the summery look before the winter arrives and you have to adapt to the new season.

Finally, the quick fire round, Lovely Girlie Bits style!  Would you rather:

Have no eyelashes or no eyebrows?  No eyebrows.

Have messy hair and nice makeup, or nice hair and messy makeup?  Nice makeup and messy hair.

Wear the brown liner/pale lip combo or sport a perm?  NEVER brown liner with pale lip so I guess the perm...

Shave your head or not cut your hair for 5 years?  I'd rather me Pocahontas for a while!

Lose your suitcase full of clothes or toiletries bag on a trip?  Really tough!  Hmm... kill me now!

Give up your mobile phone or makeup for a year?  EEEEEEK!  Mobile phone...

Walk around all day with your skirt tucked into your knickers or have lipstick on your teeth?  I'd rather have my skirt tucked into my knickers for a week!!! Nothing good about having lipstick on my teeth!!

Thanks so much for having the chats with us Vanesa!  I'm now going to get stuck into that highlighter and rock a red lip in the attempt that I might look about 10% like that gorgeous model above!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Maybelline Color Elixirs have come to Ireland! First look with lots of photos and swatches!

It's happening!  Come September, these little stunners will be on counters everywhere and makeup lovers like me can breathe a sigh of relief.  They're here...  I've been hoping and praying and waiting for the Maybelline Color Elixirs to come to Irish shores because come on, the Americans get all the good stuff!  And yesterday, six of the eleven shades on offer arrived and I couldn't wait to show them to you, so this is a first look today, not a review.  An introduction if you will.  Maybelline Color Elixirs, meet everyone.  Everyone, meet the Color Elixirs.  I think we're all going to get on fabulously!

I can't talk about the packaging without addressing the fact that they're the spit of Dior Addict Fluid Stick, something that's outside my budget at the moment but these are only €9.69, so yes, I'll be able to collect the rest of them.

The formula has a "double phase technology" which sounds very high falootin' but essentially it offers the high shine of a gloss with the pigment of a lipstick.  Want to see more?  Yes, I thought so.

L-R: Maybelline Color Elixir Nude Illusion, Blush Essence, Hibiscus Haven

The first three shades here are the softer of the six and while Hibiscus Haven isn't a hit for me (blue toned bubblegum pinks do nothing for my complexion) the formula on all of them is spot on.   Nude Illusion is a warm caramel nude whereas Blush Essence is a dusky pink with fine shimmer running through it.  

L-R: Maybelline Color Elixir Nude Illusion, Blush Essence, Hibiscus Haven

On to the brights now and I love them all!  Have a guess which one is my favourite....

L-R: Maybelline Color Elixir Alluring Coral, Mandarine Rapture, Signature Scarlet

L-R: Maybelline Color Elixir Alluring Coral, Mandarine Rapture, Signature Scarlet

Each one applied easily with the soft applicator and please can we take a moment to look at the shine below!  Of all the lipstick/gloss hybrids I've tried so far, this formula hits the mark in terms of offering the glossiness that I crave being a gloss lover.

Top row: L-R: Maybelline Color Elixir Nude Illusion, Blush Essence, Hibiscus Haven
Bottom row: L-R: Maybelline Color Elixir Alluring Coral, Mandarine Rapture, Signature Scarlet

It's grand seeing lip swatches like above, but I thought I'd show them to you with my whole visage for the craic.   And you can see how much my favourites work with my skin tone.  Regular readers won't even have to guess which ones are my favourite, but I'll tell you anyway.

Maybelline Color Elixir Nude Illusion

Nude Illusion is a warm nude as I mentioned above and doesn't wash me out, making a great shade to wear with a smokey eye.

Maybelline Color Elixir Blush Essence

Blush Essence is a beautiful soft pink shade is perfect for everyday wear and I shall get lots of wear out of it, especially to work.

Maybelline Color Elixir Hibiscus Haven

Hibiscus Haven is a really bright bubblegum pink shade and honestly is so much brighter in real life than in this photo!  If you like brights then you'll love this.

Maybelline Color Elixir Alluring Coral

Alluring Coral... Where do I begin.... It's me in lipgloss/lipstick hybrid form and it's perfect.  Not that I'm perfect.  But I'm a bit more perfect when I wear this.  

Maybelline Color Elixir Mandarine Rupture

Mandarine Rupture comes a very close second to Alluring Coral in terms of my love for it.  I can't cope with the sheer perfection of this shade and this will be in constant rotation for me.  Fact.

Maybelline Color Elixir Signature Scarlet

Signature Scarlet knocked me upside the head with it's pigmentation, shine and absolute wearability for a rich red shade.

So that's our first look at the Color Elixirs.  I'll be testing them out over the coming days and will report back with a full review, maybe in video form!

Which one is your favourite?  To the comments!
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