Friday, August 30, 2013

Maybelline Fit Me Shine-Free Foundation review, before and after photos

It's rare that the Constantine sisters find a foundation they both like.  Joanne has dry, sensitive skin and I have normal skin with an oily t-zone.  Maybelline Fit Me Shine Free Foundation fits us both, much to my surprise (and sadness because I've let Joanne keep the lighter of the two shades we were sent which matches us perfectly.)  Doesn't matter.  She owes me one now....

The Maybelline Fit Me Shine Free Foundation is a stick foundation, but fear not readers, for it is nowt like the Pan Stick foundations we used to use back in the day.  Ah good times.  Colouring your face in with a thick layer of foundation that made it look like you'd a mask on was so 1995....  But we're nearly twenty years (gulp) in the future and things have come a long way since then.  Who'd have known they'd have invented an Anti-Shine Core which has lightweight powders that dissolves excess oil?

All I know is that these look like little nipples and that will never change in my eyes.  Thankfully, these nips are ones you don't mind smearing all over your face on the train on the way to work.  The centre has the anti-shine core that is surrounded by the gel based foundation and they work together, giving you a creamy yet lightweight foundation.

Fit Me gives me a light to medium coverage and evens out my skin tone perfectly, giving a satin finish more than a matte one.  I like to draw shapes on my face and then using a buffing brush, I blend away until I'm left with lovely looking skin!

Now, in terms of longevity, I found that when I applied it over my normal moisturisers, the shine on my schnozz and forehead appeared mid morning, so not great on keeping shine at bay.  However when I used a mattifying moisturiser, or a primer, I was shine free for a good six hours.  And with a dusting of powder right after application, I get 8 hours of wear.

Yes I love it and yes I've been lashing it on like there's no tomorrow.  Yes, I'm going to miss it and yes, I sing Coldplay's "Fix You", changing the words to "Fit Me", every single time I apply this foundation.  I hope I've put it in your noggin now too.  €13.79 is the damage and it'll be in the usual spots in September.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Fuschia Make Up eyeshadow pigments review, photos, swatches

Last week Joanne went to the AWear press show (more about that next week) and came home with a bag of Fuschia make up and like a good sister, promptly handed it over to moi.  Heads up that the brand is coming to AWear stores soon but at the moment, you can buy online, in their two standalone stores in Drogheda and Swords, or from salons around the country.  All stockists are on the website.

I'd not heard of Fuschia Make Up until I was at the Irish Beauty Trade Show earlier this year and this is the first time I'm trying out any products.  Trying new brands makes me happy.  We like Karen to be happy don't we?

Anyway, there were two pigments in the bag, neither with names on them, just numbers.  8 and 11 if that helps you pick them out when you're going swatching, and you really do need to go swatching because these are fantastic products.  €12.95 is the damage for two pots filled with loosely packed, pigmented shadows that pack a punch in terms of colour payoff.

See?  You can use them wet or dry and I'd advise either using your finger or a flat eyeshadow brush to pat the colour on, or else it'll go everywhere except your eyelid.  Of course with loose shadows like this, there'll be a bit of fall out but if you take your time and place the colour, you'll be flying and have grand eyes like these below!

I've used the two shades together, giving different looks and the colours work so well together.  But you could use them on their own too.

Yes, my two eyes were different as usual and no, nobody knocked at the door this time!  I can't wait to head to a Fuschia store and try out more of the shadows and everything else they've to offer.

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

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Shiseido Perfect Rouge Lipstick RD 553 Showgirl review, photos, swatches

Ho-lee mo-lee this lipstick is nothing short of showstopping!  Being a relative newbie to Shiseido, I've been playing around with some of their products recently and this beaut took my breath away when I applied it.   Housed in sleek black packaging, the Perfect Rouge lipsticks provide moisture and colour like no other lippie I've ever tried.

One of ten new shades of the Perfect Rouge lipsticks launching this autumn, Shade RD553 Showgirl from Shiseido is a delicious tomato red lipstick that is quite possibly the creamiest, most pigmented lipsticks ever to adorn my lips.  You know I'm a leedle bit scared of bright lipsticks, but this one is too beautiful not to wear and I even wore it in my beauty confessions video last week where I'd lots of questions about it!

A shade like this isn't for the faint hearted, but is this not the most gorgeous shade of red?  Perfect for autumn and winter n'est pas?  I've worn this a few times since getting it and find it so comfortable to wear.  It doesn't dry out my lips or cake to any dry patches and really does feel like more than a regular lipstick when it's on.  With all red lipsticks, using a lipliner will help prevent any bleeding and this guy stays put for a good 4 hours.

I'm telling you now, I'll be picking up a couple more of these guys when they launch on September 2nd and they're well worth the €25 price tag.  Do what I tell you and when they launch, go to your Shiseido counter and try these on.

Lads, I think we're talking Holy Grail lipsticks here and a possible contender for Top 13 products of 2013....  I know... That's huge!

Do we like Showgirl?  And should we start calling me Lola?

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

New video! Joanne's been shopping again in Cork this time!

She's been at it again.  Shopping!  Joanne gets paid before me and decided to make me jealous and do a bit more shopping in Cork last weekend.  So all of the clothes are in stores now if you're interested in picking them up! 

We're hoping to head up north this weekend, so sweet motherajaysis there's probably going to be another haul video in the near future!

Nail of the day: MUA cosmetics Stormy Skies

I do love a nice nail varnish that's cheap as chips, but this one from MUA is cheaper than chips.  At €1.35, you could probably stand there in Superdrug, empty out the coppers in your purse and still have some left over.  The sales assistant would probably be shooting your daggers, but sure you'd be happy out with a grand nail polish and a lighter handbag!

I picked up a few of them recently in my local Superdrug in Santry and truth be told, if they'd more in stock, I would have snapped them up.

Stormy Skies is a dark green shade with fine gold shimmer running through it.  It almost looks like it's a gunmetal colour from afar, then it can look almost black in some light, but upon closer inspection, you can see just how dark the green is. 

I can safely place it into my "sophisticated" pile of polishes, meaning that it's quite understated and very office friendly.  The photos below show two coats and the formula is fantastic, especially for such an affordable polish.  The only thing I wish they'd fix is the teeny weeny skinny brush.  It means you've to go back into it a couple of times to coat the nail, but once you can live with that, it's plain sailing.  We'll also ignore the obvious "inspiration" for the bottle design taken from Essie. 

Will I keep buying MUA polishes?  Absolutely!  You can buy them in Superdrug or if you're nowhere near one, you can purchase online here.  I made an order on Saturday the 17th of August it arrived last night, so if you don't mind waiting, they've lots to choose from there.

You like Stormy Skies?

Monday, August 26, 2013

New! Michael Kors Beauty Collection is coming to Arnotts!!

This is what I'll be spending my money on in October....  Up until last week, I didn't even remotely think we'd be getting the Michael Kors beauty collection and now I'm giddy with excitement!

Look at the packaging... Don't you want to die with happiness?  Don't die yet.  Wait until October when you can buy these beauts, then put them on your face and then you can die of happiness.  Michael Kors has us sorted no matter what end of the beauty spectrum you're interested in.  There’s a Beauty Collection, a Fragrance Collection, a Body Collection and a Sun Collection.  And I want them all.

The collection is broken down into three moods, depending on what one you're in.  Sporty, Sexy and Glam.  Since I'm a moody hoor, does that mean I can buy everything?  Yes.  I thought so.

There are three fragrances in the collection, Sporty Citrus, which let's be honest, might make me sporty if I had it on me.  Sexy Amber sounds warm and inviting, like my good self and anything jasmine is me all over, so Glam Jasmine will be right up my street.

There are corresponding Lip Lustre Lipsticks and Lip Lacquer Glosses (€27.50), and nail polishes (€20) depending on your mood and the bottles are just works of art aren't they?  The shades range from nudes to dark vampy shades and make me happy just looking at the photos, so when I do buy some, I'll have to have a little sit down I think.

My Monday just got better with the thoughts of getting my hands on these guys.  Is there anything you fancy?  Shall I meet you in Arnotts when it launches?

Shiseido Ibuki review

Who wants to breathe new life into their skin?  Moi for sure!  Fear not fellow mid twenties to mid thirties ladies *ahem*, for Shiseido are bringing out a new skincare range, Ibuki, that promises to help keep our skin in check despite the daily stresses we have to deal with.

My skin goes through phases where it breaks out, then goes dry, then becomes dull and this is all thanks to real life.  I get stressed, don't get enough sleep and trying to balance everything really can take a toll on my skin.

Ibuki promises to hydrate, perfect skin texture and prevent damage from environmental factors.  I was given a starter set to play with a couple of weeks ago and have been putting it to the test.  I'm waiting to hear if it's available to buy on counters and hopefully it will be because starter sets like this are a great way of trying out a new range without spending a huge amount of money.

The Ibuki Gentle Cleanser (€35/125mls) lathers up into a creamy, luxurious foam on contact with water and gently cleanses the skin without leaving it feeling tight.  When I met with the brand, they'd a gorgeous face brush that they used with the cleanser and I'm totally going to buy that and try it out with this.

The Ibuki Softening Concentrate (€28/75mls) is used in place of a toner and this penetrates the skin quickly, giving it a hit of hydration that lasts all day.  I've loved using this and it leaves my skin feeling soft and plump, ready for the next step, the moisturiser.

The Ibuki Refining Moisturiser (€50/75mls) gives the skin a smooth, refined texture while keeping it hydrated for the day.  This feels light on my skin but I haven't seen a hint of dryness while I've been using it.

To me, Shiseido is a luxury skincare brand and so I've been "treating" myself and using the products at night.  What I have noticed is that it's taking me longer to go to sleep because I keep lying there and breathing in the delicate floral scent that I'm obsessed with.  Ob. Sessed.  It's a skincare regime that I look forward to using every evening and my skin is loving it.  My face is smooth, plumped, hydrated and I'm ready to take on the world!  I just need to go to bed a half an hour earlier so I can enjoy the scent of these guys before trying to get my eight hours!

The entire range will be on counters on September 9th.  Are you going to breathe new life into your skin?

Sunday, August 25, 2013

My Favourite Five posts of the week from my fellow bloggers - Week 33!

This week's Favourite Five posts made me want to buy stuff.  A lot of stuff.  One needs to win the lottery because it's all on the expensive side, but oh so beautiful and lustworthy.  I've gone back lots of times to visit these products on the blogs listed below, so do you wanna see?

I thought I'd talked myself out of needing a Tom Ford lippie but then I saw this post on Mouldyfruit and now I really do need True Coral.  Actual need in my heart for it.

This eyeshadow quad from Chanel will be mine this Christmas.... Damn you British Beauty Blogger showing me things like this.  It looks too beautiful to touch, but I'd get stuck in quick smart and have those gorgeous neutral shades on my eyes in no time!

Back to Tom Ford again.  Really Ree showed us a new nail polish shade, Black Sugar that's out this autumn.  This is a neutral polish I can really get my claws in to and I've nothing like it in my collection what with the red shimmer in it and all, so that means I'm allowed to buy it yeah?

When I read this post on Frillseeker this week, I actually gasped and my boss asked me if I was ok.  I couldn't tell her it was because we're getting the Michael Kors makeup collection here in Ireland and in my favourite department store Arnotts, so I told her I thought a wasp was beside me.  I can't wait to get my paws on some of these products!

Andreea from Artdonatella showed off some new products from Estee Lauder's autumn collection this week and I need that lip lacquer in Electric Wine.  It's gorgeous and very season appropriate.  Get on my face Electric Wine.

Do you want to buy any of these products now?

Friday, August 23, 2013

The pressure with things that I love!

When I love a product, I really love it.  I become obsessed and tell everyone within earshot of my absolute love for it.  I buy it for people as presents.  I carry it around with me so I can show it's fabulosity to anyone who will listen to moi.

Now, generally people will love what I love.  But not always.... How awful is it when someone doesn't like your favourite products?  You can only blink at them for so long, saying "But... look at it!"  In your mind you're thinking "You don't know what you talkin' about Willis" before offering it to them again to try a second time.  Your heart is half broken because you wanted them to love it so much and half annoyed that they obviously don't have good taste like yourself....

Andreea from ArtDonatella inspired this post as we were talking about perfumes this week on Twitter.  We are in fact perfume twins and love the same scents.  So when I raved about the Charm Rose Intense scent from Thomas Sabo, she was dying to try it and because I carry it around with me at all times, she got to try it one evening while we were out schmoozing like you do.  I'll fully admit that I was a tad nervous handing it over for her to try.  The pressure was immense...  Would she like it like I like it?  Would she hand it back slowly thinking "What have you sprayed on moi?" and proceed to drench herself in other scents to mask the stench?

Thankfully none of these things happened and she loved the perfume along with everyone else who's face I managed to shove the perfume in to.

Result!  Have you ever been utterly disappointed when someone doesn't love what you love?

Nuxe Nirvanesque review

The Nuxe Nirvanesque range was love at first sniff.  Described as having notes of green and mimosa, there's something so familiar and comforting about the scent and I urge you to have a whiff as soon as possible.

The first version of Nirvanesque was brought out back in 2004 and since then, a jar of the Nirvanesque cream is sold every 16 seconds!

Nowadays, we're busier, more stressed and trying to fit work and play around each other is hard enough without having to worry about our skin.  Nuxe have updated the Nirvanesque range and added in a neuro-relaxing action and a neuro-destressing action to help us 30 somethings brighten our complexions and smooth out the first signs of wrinkles.

The science behind it is that they've added Tree Peony Extract which helps extend the lifespan of the neurotransmitters that send stress-y messages from your brain to your face, causing you to do things like grimace because you had to deal with an annoying coworker, frown because it's home time and it just started lashing and you've no umbrella, and make pitiful faces because you're exhausted from going to bed late the night before, despite having promised yourself that you'd go to bed early.  Keeping your neurotransmitters in good nick means that all these things will still happen, but your visage will bounce back in no time from making mad faces.

There are two versions of the Nirvanesque creams (€36.30) ; one for normal and one for dry to very dry.  The normal version has Rose Musk Oil where the dry version has Macadamia Oil.  Both leave the skin nourished, hydrated, soothed and de-stressed.

For those of us with combination skin, there's a light version of the cream (€36.30) which leaves a matte finish on the skin but still smoothed and again de-stressed.  Finishing up the new collection is the eye cream (€21.60) which has corrective pigments and caffeine to help fight dark circles and combined with hyaluronic acid, it's a moisturising eye cream which, you've guessed it, de-stresses the skin.

I'm absolutely loving this range and have set aside the dry to very dry cream for Lovely Mammy Bits to try.  My skin loves the range and looks and feels plumped, hydrated and with all the stresses that are going on in life at the moment, you wouldn't know it from looking at me!

The new Nirvanesque collection is on shelves now!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

New video! Confessions of a beauty blogger!

Bless me reader, for I have sinned.  I'm sharing with you some of my beauty confessions and one is a doozy.  But those who have left comments on the video so far have warmed the cockles of my heart and for that, I thank you.

Have a look and a laugh at this video and please be a good child and leave me any beauty confessions you have in the comments!


Clarins Be Long mascara review, before and after shots

On Monday I showed you the gorgeous eyeshadow palette from the Clarins Graphic Expression collection for autumn 2013.  In those photos, I was wearing the newly repackaged Be Long mascara and I'm back to give you my thoughts on it!

Housed in brushed gold packaging, the Be Long mascara promises to lengthen and curl your lashes.  With peptides to help stimulate lash growth day after day and panthenol which helps strengthen your lashes, this is essentially a treatment as well as a mascara.

The plastic wand has a slight bend to it, allowing for easy application, but to be honest, the bend in the wand is so slight that I thought I'd gotten a wonky wand and had to read the release to see no, it's supposed to be like that.

You know I'm very hard on mascaras because I've tried so many in the past.  I know a great mascara when I see one and this one is just ok.  It gives reasonable length, curl and volume but nothing mindblowing and I need va-va-voom lashes, even for work!  The wand doesn't comb through my lashes enough to separate them properly but does reach all of the little teeny weeny lashes on the inner and outer corners.
If you're someone who likes a more natural finish to the lashes, then you'll be happy with this and you'll see in the photos that it gives whispy, feathery ones.  I just want more when it comes to mascaras, more, I tell you!

It'll set you back $26.00, but my advice would be to hold off on the mascara and put your cashola towards the eyeshadow palette! 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Clarins Instant Concealer review, before and after shots

I'm telling you, this blog keeps me busy and that's not to mention everything that's going on outside of the blogging world.  Sleep is scarce and I've gotten into a ridiculous routine of waking up at 6.30 am on Saturdays and Sundays too?!  And so days like these makes me happy for make up.  Not for me.  For whoever has to look at me.  I do it for you.

Clarins has brought out a new concealer, Instant concealer that promises to revive tired eyes, smooth the delicate skin and conceal dark circles.  There are four shades, 1 conceals blue dark circles and is aimed at fair skin.  Shade 2 conceals brownish purple dark circles and is for medium skin tones.  Shades 3 and 4 will conceal brownish black dark circles and is for darker skin tones.

I was given shade 2 to test out and test out I have!  I've become pretty reliant on this little tube and have made sure to give myself an extra minute or two in the morning to apply it so I look like a human being.

I use it just on the dark circles under my eyes.  I don't take it further out than where the fluffy brush is in the photos below.  I do the same with any concealers I use because they can cake in my fine lines (laughter lines ahem).  The Instant Concealer lightens and brightens under my eyes, concealing the purple circles that torment me every day.  I don't really suffer with puffy eyes, but the concealer contains caffeine that helps diminish puffiness and decongests the under eye area.

The before and after shots speak for themselves.  You can see my little scar in the bottom set of photos, right in the middle of my under eye circle and it always seems to cast more of a shadow under there.  So it's nice to be able to hide that.  The concealer itself is really pigmented and I need only the tiniest dot to get busy with.

As I said above, I'm very dependent on this guy now.  It doesn't dry out the skin under my eyes and doesn't cake which is my biggest bugbear when it comes to concealers.  It'll set you back €24 but will last for ages because the tube is quite big and it's also really pigmented, so Girlie Maths comes into effect big time for justification.  But there really is no justification.  It does what it says on the tin for me and is my concealer of choice!  It's on counters now and be sure to check out my review of the Extra-Comfort Foundation from Clarins too!


Maybelline Color Show Vintage Leather - Red Grained review, photos

So yes, I'm technically on a spending ban, but I got a goo on me to go look at nail polishes the other day.  And came home with five.  Shhhh.  One of them was this beauty from the Maybelline Color Show collection.  I'd not heard of this Vintage Leather range, so of course was very interested altogether.

I picked up the shade Red Grained which was the brightest shade but I'd my eye on the teal shade too.  Anyway, this bright tomato red polish called to me and when I saw the little flakes in it, I was sold.  It looked different to anything else in my collection which meant I needed to buy it.  Grand justification there right?

So Red Grained dries to a matte finish which is a bit odd considering the little flakes of glitter in it.  You can't really see them once the polish dries and they just look like bumps under the polish.  That being said, I love the shade itself and the whole matte finish thing is different, and I like different!

The formula is nice and thick and these photos show two coats.  It dries really quickly and I will say, as odd as the presence of the flakes is, I quite like the polish.  It's really unique and I found myself admiring my nails a lot when it was on, holding it up to different objects, just because!

Of course, you know I love my top coats and had to see what it was like with a lick of Seche Vite over the top.  The shine from the topcoat takes away from the interest of the little flakes in the polish, but makes the polish even brighter and more in your face.

Red Grained was €4.65 and it's the prettiest out of all the polishes that I saw on the stand.  They'd some dodgy neutral ones that didn't tickle the proverbial pickle, so I'll be happy out enjoying my Red Grained!

What do you think of this polish?  Share your thoughts!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

imPress nail design kit review!

Back in my college days, many years ago, my friend Kim and I decided to try stick on nails as we were heading out and wanted a little extra somethin' somethin' added to our outfits.  Glue was involved and yes, I ended up gluing my finger to her nail and much panic ensued.  Since then, any time I see stick on nails, I'm brought back to that fateful night.

So when this press on nail set from imPress arrived last week, I had a bout of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, but was still intrigued and very taken in by what was inside the box.

Nails I could design myself?  Yes sir.  I used to watch Blue Peter.  I know how to do crafty things.  And we have animal print stickers, neon pink stickers and gold chain effect stickers?  It was like my inner tacky goddess was being spoken to!  I read the instructions and breathed a sigh of relief when I realised that there was no glue involved.  You get two sets of black press on nails and then a bunch of pre cut stickers that you can go wild with and create nail art to be proud of!

The most adventurous nail art I can do is dots as we know, so I was able to let my inner Martha Stewart emerge and layer, file and cut the stickers, making my designs.  Once you've chosen the ten nails that fit your fingers, you can do your designs and then stick them on to your nails.

Just call me Snookie why don't you!  Oh lads, I don't know if it's the black nails, the gold trim, the zebra print or the neon pink that makes me so happy.  I feel like I'm back in the 80s! 

I don't like the feeling of long nails, so if I was wearing these on a night out, I'd have to file them down a bit.  But in terms of colour and design, I did a grand job, but for the next set I make, I'm going to go wild, wild I tell you!  For a fun DIY press on manicure, then go find this limited edition set that is €7.99 in Penneys.  These last up to a week so would be great for a girl's night out!

I'm imPressed! (Insert groan here) You didn't think I was going to let that one go did you?

Smashbox Liquid Halo Foundation review, before & after shots

Smashbox's Halo Hydrating Perfecting Powder is the best powder I've ever tried and when they announced they were bringing out a Liquid Halo HD foundation, I couldn't wait to try it out.  I was given shade 2 (there are ten altogether) to play with and it's the perfect match for my colouring.  This makes for a happy Karen!

So what makes it different to other HD foundations?  Well, it's infused with "100% gel-covered pigments that mimic photo filters to blur imperfections."  Hold on.... It blurs imperfections and I don't have to edit the living daylights out of my photos to look like I've great skin?  Sign moi up!

It has Liquid Light technology, giving you a radiant glow but without it looking like you've make up on.  And that's the main selling point for me.  This is the only foundation I've tried that when I've applied it, I can't see it on my skin.  It doesn't settle into pores or fine lines and as it gives a sheer to medium coverage, is buildable, but the photos below show just the one layer of it on my visage.

I've been wearing the foundation with the Halo powder and together, they're a dream team of luminosity and perfect looking skin!  And now that Joanne and I are doing YouTube videos, we need perfect looking skin on camera, so I'll be trying this out on Joanne for the next video we do together.  This stays put all day and doesn't cake or cling to dry patches and has been an absolute staple in my routine in the mornings.  The fact that it's oil free and has SPF 15 are added bonuses to this already fantastic foundation.

Smashbox Liquid Halo Foundation will be on counters from September the 18th and you need to go in and see it for yourself when the time comes!  It will be €35.50 and when you see the results on your own face, you'll be handing your spondoolies over!
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