Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The power of perfume

This is a slightly different post today ladies.  It's on a subject I've been wanting to write about for a while but didn't know how to go about it, so here goes.

Anyone that knows me knows that I love perfume.  Love it, collect it, use it, display it, you get the picture.  I used to sneak into my mam's bedroom and douse myself with her Anais Anais back in the day.  I think my first self bought perfume was the evocative Exclamation!  Swiftly followed by the unforgettable Charlie Red, ah good times :)

Perfume and I have a great relationship.  Some of the scents I have are just nice,  unoffensive ones that I wear on a day to day basis, but some of them bring me back to a place or time quicker than looking at any photo.  I have a Charles Jourdan perfume that transports me to the streets of New York when I wear it.  If I want to go to Paris, I spray on Jean Paul Gaultier's Classique.  A few squirts of my Adidas Pure Lightness body spray and I'm back in Spain.

There's one scent that gets me like no other though.  It's from Avon and it's the Pur Blanca range.  I have an eau de toilette and skin softener in this scent that is now sitting on my bed beside me as I write this.  I bought them 9 or 10 years ago from a friend who was an Avon representative.  I was home one summer from Canada, where I lived for a few years and it was one of the best summers ever, with all of my family under one roof again.  I was working with my dad that summer and doing the Body For Life program with my brother and we were all so happy.

When I want to go back to that time and feel how I did then, I open the tub of skin oftener or spray some of the eau de toilette into the air and it's done.  Now this next part might sound silly and I might not explain it properly.  I don't actually use the products on myself.  I think I'm afraid if I use them, I'll lose the effect it has, it won't be special anymore.  This is my go to scent if I'm feeling low or want to feel close to my dad.  I cherish the feeling it gives me and for that reason, the two products will stay in the top drawer of my chest of drawers, ready to be called upon whenever I need it.

Knowing how strongly I associate perfume with times and events, when my dad was sick, I purposely didn't wear any.  I knew that no matter what I wore, it would always be associated with that period in my life.  I'd much rather have a scent linked to a happy time :)

Does anybody else have a special scent that instantly brings them to a different time or place? 

Sunday, May 29, 2011

May favourites

I won't start this post off with the obligatory "Oh I can't believe another month has gone by already" phrase (even though it's completely true, June only a few days away?!)  Anyways, on to the products I reached for and made me happy through the month of May.  I'm sure I'm forgetting some but anyways...

First up is Benefit's Coralista.  I bought this last year in Sephora and have loved it ever since.  It is my go-to summery coral blush and I have yet to find a coral blush that makes me as happy as this one does!  I have my eye on Benefit's Cha Cha Tint, so roll on July when it's released!

Next up is The Body Shop's Bronzing Powder in Shade 4.  I got this in a goody bag at the release of the Honey Bronze Collection and this has been my favourite product from the range.  It's a beautiful matte bronzer that I've been using to contour recently.  A full review is coming shortly.

Since going blonde, I cannot get away with not washing my hair every day anymore.  My roots end up looking greasy and gross, something I think I'd taken for granted when having the dark cheveux.  But not to worry, Batiste has helped me in this department!  I'm sure you know all bout this product, but for those that don't, it's a dry shampoo that you apply to the roots, leave for a few minutes, massage into roots and brush out.  It absorbs the oils in your hair and gives you that extra day so as not to kill your hair by washing it every day.

My favourite nail varnish was sent to me by NYC New York Colour and is in the shade Prospect Park Pink.  You can read my full review here!

I am obsessed with trying new mascaras but this is the one I make sure is in my makeup bag every day ever since buying it.  It's Max Factor's False Lash Effect Fusion and is fabaliss.  My full review is here so click and read.

I think my Orofluido has become a staple in my monthly favourites every since I bought it in January!  Since going blonde and not having had a haircut in bloody ages, the ends of my hair are in bits.  My ususal little blob that I used to use isn't enough now, so I've been applying more and my hair has thanked me for it.  That being said, I'm totally going to get my hair chopped in June before going away because it will look like a haystack after a week in the sun and chlorine!  My full review of Orofluido is here.

Last but not least is my favourite brush of the month.  It is the Sigma Flat Top Synthetic Kabuki F80 brush.  I became a Sigma affiliate and received this brush in the post from them to review.  I have not used another foundation brush since I got this and would absolutely recommend getting one.  My full review is here if you want to read.  If you want to get one, click here to go to the Sigma page!.  This is an affiliate link and I will make a small commission from Sigma if you purchase anthing from them using that link.

I sometimes find it hard to do posts on my favourite things because I love trying new products out!  But I shall continue on and find my holy grail products some day ;) 

What have been your favourite products of the month?  Let me know in the comments below and it'll give me new products to add to my list!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

*CLOSED*NYC New York Colour Giveaway!*CLOSED*

****This giveaway is now closed, so don't enter!********

It's giveaway time boys and girls, well girls really.  As you may have read in previous posts, I was sent some products from NYC - New York Colour to play with and I have some to give away to you.  Some I was given and some I shall be buying myself.

Here be some of the prizes:

On the left is NYC's Liquid Lipshine in the colour Rivington Rose, the right is the Lippin' Large Lip Plumper in Pink Champagne.  On the bottom are a set of NYC's eyelashes.

Now, on to the rest of the products.  What I'm offering is for you to choose 3 NYC products from the following posts.  I will buy them myself, I can't be giving my lovely readers my used cootie products ;P

The nail polishes are here.

The lip products are here.

And the eye products are here.

Have a browse of the posts and come back here and leave a comment with your name, email address and the 3 NYC items you'd like to win.  For extra entries, check out the rules below. 

Here be the boring but necessary rules.

1. You must be a follower of my blog, if you aren't already, just click the "follow" button on the right of the page and sign up.

2. To enter the giveaway simply comment below with your name and the name of the 3 items you'd like to win and leave your email address so I can contact you. This gives you *ONE* entry.
3. To get *TWO* entries, follow me on http://twitter.com/#!/lovelygirlybits and tweet this message: Check out http://lovelygirliebits.blogspot.com/ for an NYC New York Colour giveaway!  @lovelygirlybits  Leave your Twitter username in the comment.
4. For *THREE* entries, go to my Lovelygirliebits Facebook page and click "Like" leaving your Facebook username in the comments.
So this gives you a maximum of three entries in total.
I hope these rules were easy to understand, if you've any questions, leave them in the comments below and I shall clarify :)
Ill be using random.org to pick the winner and the winner wins the 3 items they commented about. The competition is open internationally and ends on Friday June 10th at midnight GMT.
Good luck everyone!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

NYC's Purple Rain eye makeup look

I haven't done an eye makeup look in yonks and felt inspired last night.  Maybe it was Barack Obama telling us "Is feidir linn" that got me motivated!

Anyway, I received some New York Colour products a couple of weeks ago to try and immediately fell in love with the Mineral Eye Colour Wheel in Purple Rain (€2.99).  I wore it to work the day after receiving them and got a few compliments which is always nice :)  I found that applied on bare lids, the shadows were not very pigmented, but, thanks to Youtube and makeup tutorials, I turned to the NYC's Automatic Eye Pencil in Vampy Violet (€2.99) to help remedy this.  I also used my Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Liner in black because I think that a purple look needs liner and lots of lashes to pull it all together.  I used the High Definition mascara (€2.99) from NYC to complete the look.

These are the NYC products in question, my review of the Maybelline liner can be found on the link above.

To try to explain it better, I've numbered the different shades in the colour wheel.  The ones that have the same number are the same shade (stating the obvious!) 

I've been playing around with different ways of doing tutorials that make it easy to see how I've done it, so let me know what you think of this new method.

Step 1:  Using the Automatic Eye Pencil in Vampy Violet, I traced the outline of shape that I wanted over my eyelid and lined under my lower lashes.  I then coloured in my eyelid like I was a child of 5 again.

Step 2:  I used Shade 2 of the Purple Rain mosaic wheel and applied it to my eyelid, packing the colour on.  I applied it along the lower lash line on top of the purple liner.  I applied the lightest shade, Shade 1 to the inner corner.
 Step 3: I applied Shade 3 to the outer V area of my eyelid, along my crease and to the outer part of the lower lash line.  Then I blended the edges to make it look all nice :)
 Step 4:  Armed with my Maybelline gel liner, I applied it to my waterline and tightlined (applied it to my upper waterline) and hoped I wouldn't poke myself in the eyeball.
 Step 5 :  To tie it all together, I applied my Maybelline gel liner to the upper lash line, and applied one coat of the High Definition mascara to both top and bottom lashes.

And this is the finished look!  I am totes smizing if you can't tell :)

So let me know what you think of the new layout of tutorials, is it too basic, are the photos too big/messy etc?

I love the idea of the mosaic wheels, it's a great little thing to keep in your makeup bag, but as I said, they work better over a base, so either use a pencil like I did here, or try something like a paintpot from Mac.  Basically, something that is sticky and will give the shadow something to stick to.

Thanks for reading girls!


Sunday, May 22, 2011

Beauty Blogger's afternoon of fun :)

Today I met up with Deirdre and Sinead from VivaAdonis and Claire from In Claireness Now Fair to do what we do best, have the chats and shop for makeup!

We went to the Omni Centre in Santry and visited Superdrug, Unicare Pharmacy and Boots.  I was looking forward to going shopping with like minded lunatics, I mean normal girls, who loving swatching and shopping in pharmacys!  I went armed with Soap and Glory face wipes that I only use to wipe the back of my hand with because they smell like something you'd clean your bathroom with.

These were my purchases today...
Let's start on the left and go clockwise shall we?  First up is VO5's Miracle Concentrate Elixir with Argan Oil which was €3.55.  I'm looking forward to trying this out and seeing how it compares to my beloved Orofluido!  The top products were the Bargain Of The Trip spotted by Sinead in Unicare!  They are Soft Cream Eye Colours from Clarins that were reduced from €14.50 to a measly €3.50!  Only a fellow beauty enthusiast would be excited about a bargain like this :)  On the right is the Volume Fast & Perfect rotating mascara from Bourjois that I've been *dying* to try since seeing it on the Pixiwoo youtube channel.  I love those girls and love trying out their recommendations, especially when they're affordable.  This was on offer for €10.99 and I can't wait to try out this little gadget.  On the bottom is Collection 2000's Lasting Perfection concealer which was €6.40, bought purely because Tanya Burr, aka, Pixi2woo, said it's amazing.  That's good enough for me :)  I love and trust her :)

I also got some cotton pads but didn't think they were picture worthy!  All in all it was a very successful inaugural shopping trip of the Irish Beauty Bloggers.  I'm sure there will be more of them and we shall gather more bloggers as we go!

Dupe alert for Metro Chic featuring Sally Hansen's Commander in Chic!

You know I love a good dupe, who doesn't?  When I saw Commander in Chic at the launch of the Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure I thought of Sephora by OPI's Metro Chic sitting at home in my nail polish collection.  I was excited to compare these two beauties especially because OPI is hard to find in Ireland.  Yes there are websites that we can order OPI from,but it's not the same as being able to pop into town or to your local pharmacy and browse!

Both bottles look almost identical.  Metro Chic is ever so slightly darker than Commander in Chic but you would have to be looking closely to see the differences.  I found it strange using the weeny thin brush with Metro Chic after using the wide brush with Commander in Chic, but I battled through this obstacle!  Metro Chic has a thicker formulation but all of the photos below are of 3 coats of each polish, to make it fair.
Above is both polishes taken with a flash.  There is hardly any difference at all!
Above is with no flash, again, the difference is almost imperceptible.

The above photo shows the obligatory "Swatch Claw" as I call it.  On the left is Sally Hansen's Commander in Chic and on the right is Sephora by OPI's Metro Chic.  They are both chic, they are both beautiful, but come June, you'll be able to walk into your local pharmacy or grocery store and pick up Commander in Chic.

My mission for the week is to leave both sets of nails as they are and see who wins.  When I say win, I mean who will survive the typing and general faffing about that I do with my paws on a day to day basis.  I have no problems wearing a different polish on both hands, I can barely tell the difference and that's good enough for me :)

Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure - overview and swatches!

Ladies, something special happened to me on Friday evening.  Something wonderous.  Something that happens to every girl at some point in their lives and after years of waiting, it happened..... I popped my mani cherry!  Yes ladies, you have read correctly, not only have I never had a facial, but I have never had a manicure either.  So when I was invited along to the launch of the Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure and found out I'd be getting a manicure, I was glad I'd been patient all these years and waited until Friday ;P
Anyway, enough about me, let's talk about Sally shall we?  Sally Hansen has been going strong for over 50 years worldwide and here in Ireland we've used the Airbrush Legs to beautify our pins and been able to use the various nail treatments.  Now, they're bringing some colour to our little green island!  I met and chatted with Dana Caruso, Global Beauty Expert, Founder and CEO of The Nail and Skin Care Instutite and all round Goddess.  She has used her "Science-based & Trend Forward" philosophy in working with Sally Hansen to create the Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure. 

What is this Complete Salon Manicure I hear you ask?  Well, Dana wanted a product that was a manicure in a bottle.  This is that.  Simple as.  It’s a base and top coat, strengthening and growth treatment and salon-inspired color all in one!  It is every nail polish junkie's dream in one bottle.  Yellow stained nails will be no more thanks to the base coat.  The top coat gives you a beautiful shine.  The strengthening and growth treatment is essential for those of us (*ahem* me) who never have an unpainted nail but never think to include this step when lashing the polish on before bed time.  It also contains "exclusive, patented, micro-encapsulated time-release technology" to give a salon-finish manicure that lasts up to 10 days.  I'm that person who decided she wants to paint her nails right before bedtime but hates the thought of faffing about with base coat, 2 coats of polish, then top coat, it takes too long.  The Complete Salon Manicure is going to make me very happy, I can feel it in my waters!

There are an impressive 36 shades in the Complete Salon Manicure line ranging from Sheers, Deeps, Brights, Classics to Nudes and Metallics.  They are €8.95 and will be available in selected pharmacies, department stores and grocery stores nationwide in June, so get picking the shades you want!

After the chat with Dana, I was allowed to pick what colour I wanted for my manicure and after much hmming and hawing, I decided on Thinking of Blue, a gorgeous creamy navy polish that kind of went with my ensemble :)  I give you a photo of my sausage fingers!


The lovely girls from O' Leary PR, Aoife, Claire and Carol let me pick some polishes from the line to try out and I'm telling youlads, there's really something for everyone in the line.  I couldn't wait to show you the polishes so without further ado, I would like to indroduce you to my Sally Hansen Army! (cue the Apocalypse Now music)

First of all, look at the bottles... They're a heavy thick glass bottle that even feels expensive.  I'm a sucker for packaging!  They contain the wide brush I love so much, making it so easy to apply the polish in 1-2 strokes and not making a huge mess on your cuticles.  This is good for us amateurs,

First up is Commander in Chic - a creamy taupe polish with mauve/purple undertones.  This reminds me of my Metro Chic by OPI and I'll do a comparison post soon. 

Above is Grey by Grey.  This is a creamy blue/grey polish that is much thicker in formulation than Commander in Chic.

Above is Calypso Blue and one that I think will be a staple for my summer nails!  It's a beautiful sea blue polish with turquoise and green shimmer running through it.  Beautiful.

Above is Fairy Teal.  This is another polish with a thicker consistency and the photos above are of just one coat.

Above is Midnight in NY.  This is one of my favourites so far.  It's a black base with multicoloured tiny glitter running through it.  This was hard to show in photos so you'll have to trust me when I say you need to check it out!  The base itself is quite thin so the photos above are of 3 coats and if I wasn't swatching like a lunatic, I would have applied a 4th to make it perfect.
Next up is Plum Luck.  This is a creamy plum/purple colour.  The photos above are of 2 coats but I probably would use 3 to make it perfectly opaque.  Gorgeous colour for Autumn.

Red Zin is next on the list.  It's a creamy deep-red polish that makes me want to have a glass of red Zinfandel!  It's got a thinner formulation so even after 2 coats I could still see the white of my nail through it, so 3 coats it is!

All Fired Up is above.  This red is unlike anything else in my collection.  It is a tomato red and reminds me of the 50s for some reason! 

Back to the Fuchsia is above and I already know I'll be bringing this to Spain with me.  It's a hot pink polish with blue/purple microshimmer running through it.  Love. It.

Above is Shrimply Devine, a true bubblegum Barbie pink that will be perfect for summer.

Finally we have Kook-A-Mango which is a creamy orangey/red colour that is totally on trend at the moment and will be gorgeous with a tan.

So ladies, that's the overview.  I will most definitely be picking up a few more when they're released in the shops and will pick up a couple for a giveaway!  Next on my plan is to do the wear test on them, which is hard for me because I like to change my nails all the time!  Keep an eye out for that next weekend and in the meantime, let me know which one is your favourite from those above.  Whichever 2 get the most votes, I will get them for a giveaway.

Thanks to Claire, Aoife and Carol for making us feel so welcome.  Thanks to Dana for being fabaliss and coming to Ireland to launch this product and thanks to Sally Hansen for bringing colour to Ireland!


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Nail of the day: Sir! Yes, Sir from Catrice

While getting some nail polish remover in my local pharmacy yesterday, I had a teeny glance at the Catrice nail varnish stand and as soon as I saw this polish, I knew I had to have it.  My sister is going to a wedding at the end of the month and is wearing a beautiful dark green dress and I thought this would look fab with it.   I've nothing like this in my collection and just thought it was gorgeous.  I would like to introduce you to Sir! Yes Sir! from Catrice.  It was €2.49 and an absolute bargain.

Sir!  Yes, Sir! is a beautiful creamy army green polish that glides on smoothly and evenly.  These photos are with two coats of the polish and one coat of Seche Vite.

I wore it to work today and couldn't stop admiring my handiwork while I typed away :)  It's totally a work-friendly polish so you won't be getting funny looks from people, just jealous ones!

I only have one other Catrice polish in my collection; Wrapped Around My Finger, so I think I need to add more!  Any recommendations?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

NYC - New York Colour lip products overview and swatches

Next up on our trip through NYC New York Colour goodies are the lip products.  If you want to read about the nail polishes, click here!  First on the agenda are the Ultra Last lipsticks that are €2.49.  They feel lovely and creamy on the lips and these two are so pigmented.

On the left is Lilac Dream and on the right is Blue RoseLilac Dream is a lovely pink lipstick with a hint of beige that doesn't appear to have much lilac or purple tendencies!  It's a pretty neutral colour that is slightly darker than my lips.  Blue Rose though is something else.  It is a beautiful fuscia pink lipstick with blue undertones to it, as soon as I saw it I thought of ArtDonatella, she loves really bright lipstick, Andreea you need this.

The Kiss Glosses are next on the list and are €1.49.  Are you sensing a trend yet!  Top is Jay Walkin' Jam and is a bright pink gloss with multicoloured glitter running through it.  The middle gloss is Sugar Hill Shimmer and is a peachy/clear gloss with tonnes of glitter running through it.  And on the bottom is B'Way Berry which is a blackberry coloured opaque gloss.  It looks more purple in real life compared to the photo above.  I've been using Sugar Hill Shimmer this week at work and it's luffly :) 

The Lippin' Large Lip Plumpers are next up and are €2.49.  These contain cinnamon and ginger to help plump the lips, a very strange feeling altogether!  I'll do a before and after shot to see how it fares.  The top shade is Pink Champagne and is a dark pink/beige gloss with really fine glitter running throughout.  Under that is Strawberry Mousse which is a pearly baby pink gloss.  Bootiful.

The Liquid Lipshines are next up and are €2.29.  The top shade here is Rivington Rose and is a dark pink/rosey shimmery gloss that is gorgeous over Lilac Dream.  Under that is Brighton Beach Peach and this is a gorgeous colour for summer, peachy and shimmery.  They're not sticky at all and smell like cake!  They look frosty in the photos but on the lips they're really glossy and shiny. 

As we know, I have a lip product problem and these have not helped this problem.  I am now carrying an extra 2-3 items in my handbag every day.  I may as well give up and start bringing a wheely suitcase with me to work ;P

NYC - New York Colour nail polishes overview and swatches

Earlier this week, Fiona from New York Colour sent me some products to play with and when I say "some", I mean an obscene amount :)  So thank you so much Fiona, I'm having great fun playing with the products :)
I started doing one big monstrous post but it really was gimungous, so I'm splitting it up into a few posts.

First up is the nail polishes from the In A New York Minute range.  These babies will set you back a whole €1.29!  Yes, dear reader, you have read correctly, loose change in the beauty world :)  They dry in a New York Minute which is handy, who likes waiting around for polish to dry?

Above left is Greenwich Village, a bright fuscia pink that would be perfect for summer.  I'm obsessed with wearing bright colours during the summer months so this will be a fast favourite of mine.  Above right is Battery Park Purple, a deep purple polish that I can see myself wearing a lot in the Autumn.  I love that it's not too dark where you can't see that you're wearing a purple polish (I'm talking to you Lincoln Park After Dark!)

Above left is Sidewalkers.  It's a concrete grey polish that I would wear in the Autumn too.  I'm wondering how it would look with a glittery polish over the top.  Above right is Prospect Park Pink.  This was my immediate favourite that I wore to work and admired my nails all day.  You can see my full post here.

The next set of polishes are from the Expert Last Nail Polish range that last up to 7 days and are €1.99

Above left is Permanent Pink.  This is a gorgeous raspberry pink polish that will be coming on holidays with me to Spain.  Love it.  Above right is Oh SoHo Sweet, a milky pink polish that has french manicure written all over it, can't wait to try it properly.

Above left is Late Night Latte, a pearly light, well, latte coloured polish!  I'm not a big fan of polishes that have a pearl finish to them but when I teamed it up with the next polish, I was happy.  Speaking of which, the next polish up on the right is Grammercy Glitz.  Now, those of you that read my blog must know that I'm a big fan of glitter polishes.  They're a pain to remove, but the joy they bring to me is worth it!  This is a clear polish with blue, green, yellow and a muted silver glitter running through it.  I believe this polish will make me happy.

Above left is Late Night Latte topped with Gramercy Glitz, a little bit of glitter and I'm anybody's :)

Has anyone tried any of these polishes?  What colours do I need to add to my collection?
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