Monday, September 26, 2016

Catrice HD Liquid Coverage Foundation review, before & after photos

There's a new budget foundation in town that I've been wearing loads, mentioning it almost every day on Snapchat and for good reason!  Catrice's HD Liquid Coverage foundation is possibly one of my favourite budget foundations I've tried so far and the fact that it's under a tenner is the icing on the cake.  Now I want cake.  And for the bake off to stay on BBC1.  Back to the foundation Karen!

Catrice HD Liquid Coverage Foundation

I was sent the lightest shade, 010 which I still have to bring down the neck when I wear it as it's every so slightly too dark for me, so if you're paler than me, you're out of luck with this range.  There are only four shades available which boggles my brain.  Four?!  Hopefully they expand the range soon to cover more skin tones.

I've been applying it with my regular foundation brush, the round topped kabuki from Nima Brush and it goes on beautifully.  Ignoring the dropper applicator, which isn't my favourite method of dispensing product but that's just my personal preference, the foundation itself is packed full of pigment, so a little goes a long way.

Catrice HD Liquid Coverage Foundation Before and After

It doesn't cling to any dry patches, evens out my complexion beautifully and really does give a flawless finish to the skin.  I always use my fabulous red nose as an example of how much redness a foundation can cover and one layer does the job easily.  If you want uber perfect coverage, then this will work because it's easily buildable and doesn't look cakey.

Fans of a matte finish will love this because it has that balance of keeping shine at bay but doesn't make the skin look flat.  I'm talking subtle radiance, making my skin look healthy and in it's easier to see what I mean in the before and after photo below, especially on my cheek.

Without powdering my t-zone, the foundation usually starts to break down on my nose about 6-7 hours after applying it and if I powder my schnoz, I still look only massive by the time I get home after work.
Catrice HD Liquid Coverage Foundation Before and After

It's €7.80, will last ages and if you've normal/oily/combination skin, it's definitely worth checking out.  But because there are only four shades, go swatch them in shops now instead of buying online.  I'm obsessed with this and for fans of selfies, this photographs beautifully!  Catrice HD Liquid Coverage Foundation is available in Penneys and selected pharmacies nationwide.

What's your favourite budget foundation at the moment?

Monday, September 19, 2016

Giorgio Armani Si Le Parfum review!

I know I'm on to a good autumn fragrance if when I smell it, it makes me want to throw on a cosy jumper and wrap myself up in in a scarf.  Well, the first time I had a whiff of Giorgio Armani's Si Le Parfum, I wanted to autumn-ify everything.  My house, myself, my food, my everything!  I'm talking lash on all the twinkly lights, root out every candle I own, take out the slow cooker and make a comforting stew, colour coordinate my scarves for easy access every morning.  Yes, this perfume has made me go autumn mad and I am obsessed with it...

Si La Parfum

Si Le Parfum is everything I want and love in a scent for this time of the year.  Notes include blackcurrant, amber, bergamot, vanilla, incense and patchouli and before you think that this makes it sound very dense and heavy for a perfume, it isn't.  I know that's very vague but this is me trying to describe a perfume without making grunting noises!

It's a really rich, creamy, smooth scent that wraps you up and makes you want to find someone and snuggle into them.  It doesn't matter who.  I'm thinking Aidan Turner and am hoping that the more I wear this, he may come to me and we shall live happily ever after The End.   And you can look at our wedding photos and remember this day and think "Ah, I was there when their love affair happened".

Si La Parfum

I wore this a couple of weekends ago when the weather cooled off a bit, then Ireland became hotter than the sun and I couldn't wear it because I was confusing myself with it feeling like summer but actually being autumn, but now that it's back to normal, I'm hitting it big time and have brought it into work so everyone can give it a go and we all smell fabulous.  I also brought it to an event last week and had one of my fellow perfume obsessive blogger pals Andreea give it a go.  Needless to say, it passed her test and tweeted me later that night to say she smelled her arm the whole way home!

Si La Parfum

Now, it is spendy at €140 and I was sent it, but hand on heart, the scent lasts for hours and hours, so you won't have to ration it.  It's available now exclusively from Brown Thomas and I'm happy to let you all have a whiff if I'm out and about because I bring it everywhere with me.

I can't compare it to previous Si fragrances as I've never tried any of them, so my advice is to head to Brown Thomas, give this a whiff and then stop by Penneys on the way home to pick up twinkly lights and scarves.  You now know what I'll be smelling like between now and Christmas lads!


Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Urban Decay Naked Skin Colour Correcting Fluids review!

Colour correctors are still having a moment in the beauty world and while they might be another step in our already in depth beauty routine, for those of us who want a flawless complexion, they're worth checking out.  This month, Urban Decay have released five Naked Skin Colour Correcting Fluids (€22 each) and I have two to show you today!

The idea behind colour correctors is that they neutralise skin discolourations using colour theory.  What's colour theory when it's at home?  Remember the colour wheel from back in the day?  Well basically, colours on opposite sides of the wheel cancel each other out, and in terms of skin issues and makeup, the same idea stands.

There are five in Urban Decay's collection - green which counteracts redness, so if you've any red blemishes or broken veins, this will help hide them, lavender counteracts sallowness, pink hides dark circles, yellow balances any purple areas (for me that would be my delightful purple dark circles) and peach works on darker skin tones at hiding dark circles and discolouration.

I was sent the lavender and peach shade and have been putting them through their paces as best I can as they're not the ones I'd pick out for my skin tone.  The lavender shade is for those with a lot of yellow undertones in their skin and helps balance out any sallowness.  I'm going to give this one to Joanne as she definitely has a more yellow complexion than moi.  The peach shade helps hide dark circles or blemishes and it's the one I've been testing out the most.  Depending on your skin tone, it can be used on it's own as a colour correcting concealer itself, or layered under your favourite concealer to help completely mask the skin issue you have.  So for me, if I wear the peach shade on it's own under my eyes, it definitely does a great job at hiding my dark circles, but leaves an orange tinge to the rest of my non dark circled skin blend in with the rest of my makeup.  But when I apply my concealer over it, buh-bye dark circles!

The light, creamy formula blends easily into my skin and doesn't leave my under eye area looking dry and crepey, so that's already a bonus for me because girlfriend doesn't need to be worrying about the likes of crepey eyeballs.  As you can see from the swatch above, they're really pigmented so I'd advise using a light hand and building up the colour as necessary, otherwise you'll be starting a whole different makeup trend!

I'm definitely thinking about picking up the pink corrector next time I'm in town and would it be terrible if I wanted to try Urban Decay's Naked concealer too while I'm there?  No, didn't think so, thanks lads.

The Urban Decay Naked Skin Colour Correcting Fluids are on counters now and are also available to buy from


Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Cosy twinkly lights from Penneys!

Long time followers on Snapchat and Instagram will know that I'm twinkly light obsessed!  Nothing makes a room cosier than having the main lights switched off and sticking some twinkly lights up somewhere.  Anywhere!  If you throw in fleecy pyjamas and socks, a cosy program like the Great British Bake Off and that's me sorted for the evening.  Good luck trying to shift me off the couch!

At the autumn press show in Penneys a while back, Joanne and I fell in love with a little copper lantern that they'd decorated with LED lights and knew we had to have them.  So we went into Penneys each and every week until we found them.  And before you think we sound mad altogether going in every week, you know how quickly things come and go from Penneys and you can't be waiting around!

We found the copper lantern for €10 and the battery operated LED lights for €6 and together they're perfection!  It took about ten minutes or so to feed the lights in and around the wire bits of the lantern and once I switched it on for the first time, the cosiness took over!

At the moment I have it in my office but it would look lovely in a bedroom or a living room.  Think of it on a side table or on a bookshelf or even on a floating shelf...  And what makes it even more gorgeous is that the wiring of the lights is copper too, so it blends in with the lantern itself, meaning it looks fabulous with the lights off too.

To amp up the cosiness even more, I bought these white paper garland lights with gold glittery accents which look beautiful during the day and all...  See?  White and gold, one of my favourite combinations ever and I'm a bit closer to having my Kate Spade inspired office.

But at night.... They give off the warmest, softest glow and there's something really calming about them that I can't explain.  They give off loads of light and I think I'm going to pick up a couple more sets next time I'm in Penneys.  I think they were either €8 or €10, but either way, they are beautiful and have amped up the cosy factor big time!

Are you a fan of all things cosy and twinkly or am I a bridie obsessed by myself?!

Monday, September 12, 2016

Catrice Contourious collection review, photos!

I can't read or write about the Contourious collection from Catrice without singing the "Notorious" song in my head which then leads in to visions of Conor McGregor strutting around the place.  Anyway, I've most likely put that song in your head so you're welcome!

I've said it so many times this year and I'll say it again, Catrice are kicking serious bootay this year and for the last few weeks I've been testing out these bits from their Contourious collection.  There are hits and misses and I'm here to report back on where I'd spend my sheckles and where I'd save a few bob and I do mean a few as these are tres affordable.

Catrice Contourious Sculpting Powder Palette - Pale Perfectionist - €5.50

Pale Perfectionist is a deadly little trio to keep in your makeup bag allowing you to sort your face out in a jiffy.  The contour shade is perfectly cool toned to help hollow out those cheekbones and give a bit of definition where needed.  The contouring brush is great for applying the product on the cheeks but not so much for blending it out.  I think because I'm usually in a mad rush in the morning, I haven't been reaching for it as I generally go for an angled brush that applies my contour and blends it out too.  If you're in the market for one of these contouring brushes though, one that you can really chisel out an aul cheekbone or two, then you could do worse than spending a fiver on one to see if  you actually use it.

In terms of the blush, you know I usually go for the peachier blushes but this one is gorgeous and I've been wearing it loads.  A little goes a long way... Totally found that out the hard way...  And as for the highlight, it is beautiful!  It leaves my cheekbones with a soft sheen and you know I like to glow baby glow!  This also comes in a peachier trio that I need to check out too because peach.  I love peach.  

Catrice Contourious Contouring Cream Palette - €4.95
Catrice Contourious Contouring Brush - €4.95

I'm not a huge cream contour lover and this duo were slightly off the mark for me in that while they looked great on initial application and blended into the skin easily, they ended up blending away to nothing.  The contouring brush is too big for this set but is perfect to use with the cheek trio above.  If you like a really subtle contour, and I mean reeeeeeally subtle, then go have a swatch, but I'd be more inclined to spend the extra 50 cent and get the trio above!

Catrice Contourious Highlighting Stick - €4.50

I think Catrice set the bar high with the High Glow Mineral Highlighting Powder from a few months back and so now I'm really picky when it comes to highlights.  This cream highlighting stick is really handy in terms of packaging, making it easy to plop in your handbag for touch ups during the day, but I've used better stick highlights in the past as this disappears into nothing on my skin.   Get the Mineral Highlighting Powder instead lads!

Catrice Contourious lip contour & colour - €4.95

A lip liner and gloss in one convenient tube?  My multipurpose loving self thanks you Catrice.  The pointy end is a matte lipliner which I like to use all over the lips, and the other end houses the gloss which looks lovely on it's own or on top of the liner.  This is the shade Rosewood and there's a Nude shade that I need to try as well.  Despite being matte, the liner isn't drying and has a slight silicon feel to it, giving it slight slip and making it nice and comfortable to wear.  This has made it to The Front Pocket Of My Handbag (the place where the lip products I love and use the most) and for €4.95, it's a proper bargain altogether.

There's a brow shaper and a strobing duo highlighter that makes up the collection and yes, I'll be needing to check them out myself.  The Contourious collection is on stands right now so move quickly if you want to treat yourself to something from it!

My picks of the bunch?  Spend the tenner and get the lip contour & colour along with the sculpting powder palette.  Your face and lips will thank you and so will your wallet!  I'm in the process of testing out lots more products from Catrice at the moment, so stay tuned for more budget friendly reviews!

Friday, September 9, 2016

Clarins Supra Volume Mascara review, before & after photos!

Things that you might know about me if you've been reading the blog for a while.

1.  I love mascara.
2.  I need mascara.
3.  No seriously, I have beady villainous eyes without mascara.
4.  Some of my favourite mascaras are from budget brands.
5.  I rarely feature high end mascaras because they usually don't perform any better than their more affordable counterparts and I figure if it's over the €20 mark, it needs to work work work work work, dooby dooby derk derk derk derk.
6.  That was a lot of points about mascara wasn't it.

Ok, Clarins Supra Volume Mascara, you are €26, but sweet mother of all that is pure on this earth, you are amazing and worth every penny.  I realise that you cannot read this blog post as you are a mascara, and yet I continue to type.

I haven't gotten as many comments about my lashes in ages and it's all down to this beaut.  I know I mention it a lot on Snapchat but that's because when I'm wearing it and don't say what's on my lashes, I get loads of questions about it.  A couple of people in real life have even asked me if I was wearing false lashes.  That's the mark of a good 'un for me!

This was love at first application and as always, when testing out a mascara for the first time, I applied it to one eye first and I couldn't get over the difference in my two eyeballs. The formula is just thick enough to give lots of volume but without weighing my lashes down and is just thin enough to allow for lots of separation.    Can we talk about the lift and curl for a second?  I never curl my lashes and don't need to when using this.  My lashes stay nice and lifted for the whole day so when I hit that 2pm slump when I could conk out at my desk, I still look wide eyed and alive.  There's no flaking or smudging at all and that was me testing it out in the heat we've been having recently.  Ok, the rest of my makeup might have been sliding down my face but my lashes stayed perfect!

And if making my lashes look like this every day wasn't enough, the formula which is enriched with Cassie Flower Wax and Panthenol helps strengthen my lashes the more I use it.  Not that I need any more encouragement to use this!

Now I'll be the first to admit that I haven't been the biggest fan of Clarins mascaras in the past, finding them too thin for my liking and not giving me enough oomph.  I need oomphy lashes, otherwise what's the point?  I'm going to pretend like Clarins heard my call and created the Supra Volume Mascara just for me ok?  Thanks Clarins.  My lashes and I are much obliged and now the Supra Volume Mascara has joined my Bourjois Volume 1 Second Mascara and Catrice Glam & Doll False Lashes Mascara as my favourite mascaras of 2016.

The Clarins Supra Volume Mascara is on counters now everywhere and you can buy it online too if the effort of life is too much and you're afraid if you go into town that you'll buy all the things.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

The Body Shop Superfood face masks review!

For the most part, I try to keep to a proper skincare routine, but you know yourself, sometimes things can slide and before you know it, you look in the mirror and think "Why face?  Why are you doing this to me?  Have I not minded you enough?  Have I not drank enough water where I'm widdling every 5 minutes?  Sort yourself out mate..."

Then you realise that you're demented talking to your skin like that and you just need to give your skin a boost.  Enter The Body Shop's Superfood face masks (€25 each)!

This month, The Body Shop are releasing five new face masks aiming to tackle all skin concerns.  Multi-masking is still a big thing and the idea is that different bits if your skin will tend to have different issues, so rather than slathering the one mask all over one's face, one can apply different mask to different parts of one's visage depending on the skin issue.  This works out well for brands if we're shelling out our spondoolies on more than one product, but it's worth it if the products do their job and do it well.  While making us look even more ridey than we already are of course.

As I am completely and utterly jammy, I got to go to England earlier in the summer with The Body Shop to get a first look at the masks, see how they work and scare the bejaysis out of myself due to ghosts.  Ok, there weren't any ghosts, but head over my Instagram (lovelygirlybits) to see how demented I am.  I saved a video of me scaring myself twice.  No ghosts.  Just me.  But let's talk about the masks!

The Body Shop Chinese Ginseng & Rice Clarifying Polishing Mask

This mask is great for giving the skin a proper lift and you know in a ad when someone's showing you how to clean something in the kitchen and when it's clean, it makes a "ding!" noise?  That's what this mask does to your skin.  It makes your face ding.  Or in normal people's words, it leaves your skin looking clean and bright.

The idea is you apply a layer of this creamy exfoliating mask packed with ginseng and rice extract along with sesame seed oil over clean skin, leaving it for 5-10 minutes, longer if you'd like and then use a face cloth to gently buff the mask over the skin, gently exfoliating your visage and leaving you with a lovely bright complexion.  The scrubby bits in this mask aren't too abrasive and if you find using a cloth is a bit harsh, then loosen and emulsify the mask with water, have a scrub and rinse it off

The Body Shop Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Glow Mask

When I applied this one for the first time, all over my schnoz I think, the sensation surprised me a bit.  I've never used a charcoal mask that tingled before!  Anyway, after a minute or two, that sensation went away and the charcoal got to work, drawing the impurities out of my skin.  Along with bamboo charcoal to draw out impurities and excess oils from the skin, this also has green tea leaves for exfoliation and tea tree oil to help keep your skin clearer for longer.  Now, the best part about using a charcoal mask is when it dries hard and you get to crack it and there is no attractive way to do that, so get ready to throw shapes with your face!  Your pores won't know what hit 'em!

The Body Shop Amazonian Acai Energising Radiance Mask

You're wrecked, you're stressed and you look it.  Your face is the equivalent of the word "bleh".  You are the personification of that upside down miserable faced filter on Snapchat.  You need something that will give your skin an immediate boost of something.  Anything!  The Amazonian Acai Energising Radiance Masks fits the bill lads and while the acai berry helps fight the appearance of fatigue, you can have the benefits of guarana seed extracts which is packed with caffeine (I'm liking the concept of coffee on my insides and coffee on my outsides), along with Community Trade babassu oil which is not only gas to say out loud, but it softens, smooths and revitalises the skin.  Using this mask that looks like jam means you can be dead on the inside but thanks to your face, you can fake it 'till you make it.

The Body Shop Ethiopian Honey Deep Nourishing Mask

Please do not eat this mask.  Yes it smells like a pot of actual honey, it has the consistency of actual honey, but don't be fooled.  Now because I've told you not to eat the mask, you're going to want to aren't you?  It's totally what I'd do being the bold child that I am.  Along with the Community Trade honey with helps replenish and keep the moisture in your skin, it also has Community Trade marula oil and organic olive oil which help with issues like skin elasticity.  If you have dry or really dry skin, you're going to want to check this one out and get ready to torment people around you by asking them to touch your gorgeous skin.

The Body Shop British Rose Fresh Plumping Mask

I've left my favourite mask until last and it's the mask I've been using the most - the British Rose Fresh Plumping Mask.  Girlfriends, the only place on my body that I don't mind being plump is my face and this mask not only leaves my skin feeling bouncy soft, but it feels so nourished and hydrated after using it.  With ingredients including rose petals from the farm we visited on our trip, rosehip oil and Community Trade aloe vera, my skin literally drinks this mask up.  If I'm feeling really lazy, I'll apply a thin layer before I go to bed and then sleep in the mask, washing it off in the morning.  Baby soft skin first thing in the morning is always a good thing!  Or if it's pamper time, I lash it on nice and thick for at least 15 minutes.  Either way, it works wonders on my face and will be the one I finish first because no matter what issues are going on with my skin, a shot of moisture is always a good thing.

So yes, you can either use these on their own or tackle specific skin issues head on by using different masks on different bits of your face.  It's worth noting that all five masks are made with 100% vegetarian ingredients and the Himalayan Charcoal, British Rose and Amazonian Acai are all 100% vegan and they don't contain parabens, paraffins, silicone or mineral oils.

Sunday evenings are always my pamper evenings, especially in the darker months when it's all cosy in the house.  Give me my fleece pyjamas, a face mask and twinkly lights and I'm good to go!  I'm sorted for masks this autumn and winter lads!  Which mask is tickling your pickle?
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