Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Review: M&S Autograph Mattifying Primer

Hello lovelies,

This primer was the very first that I tried, I've tried others, yet this is the one that I always end up coming back too. I feel like a very loyal Autograph primer user, currently I'm saving it to use on long days and evenings out because it's not that easy to pick up in France, but when I pop home next week, I'm definitely going to stock up.

The mattifying primer comes in a 15ml tube which is clear, so you can see in advance when you need to re-stock, there's nothing worse than finding first thing in the morning that you've come to the end of a product and don't have a backup - first world problems.

I pop this on in the morning or before a night out after I've moisturised. The formula is super light and it absorbs so quickly. There's none of that waiting around for 5 minutes whilst you wait for it to absorb, you can pop your makeup on almost instantly. It creates a smooth base for applying makeup and I notice my skin looks better - flawless, when I've used it.

I look for primers that are oil-free or help to regulate oil, as through the day I turn from glowy to an oily mess and the longer that I can go before needing to top up my makeup the better. This primer ticks the boxes, it's oil-free and helps to keep your skin shine-free. This is great for oily-combination skin as it contains a sebum regulating ingredient which helps to keep oil under control. 

It's definitely a product for those of us with oily-combination skins and a staple in my makeup bag.

Autograph Mattifying Primer is available online and in certain M&S stores for £12.00 (currently on 3 for 2, which covers hundreds of items).

Have you tried any items from the Autograph range?

Monday, 21 October 2013

Review: Rimmel Lasting Finish Matte by Kate Moss in 110

Hello lovelies,

You may have seen me pick this up in my recent haul and I'm going to surprise you all by saying it's the first Rimmel lipstick I've ever owned, and now I'm certain it won't be the last.  

I picked up 110 on offer from Asos and picked it based up on the swatches on the website, which in all honestly weren't very realistic but they were a good price and the matte promise appealed to me. Shade 110 is a lovely vibrant red-coral colour. In the bullet, it does appear more coral but when applied, it definitely has a red undertone. I think it's a nice alternative to a standard red lip and would suit a range of skin tones. At first, I wasn't too sure if it was a bit too bright for me but I've really warmed to it, and it really brightens up a dark outfit.

(I would have took a picture of it on my lips but I'm feeling a bit under the weather at the moment, so have just done a swatch for you.)

I won't go on too much about the packaging as you can see for yourself what it's like, I really like it. I believe it comes in the standard "Kate" casing but it's red to distinguish the matte range.

The lipstick has a very light scent to it, it doesn't smell like kiddies makeup and you don't notice it. I really like the formula of this, despite being matte, it isn't overly drying on the lips and doesn't cling to dry patches. I tend to pop a lip balm on underneath but I do that with the majority of the lipsticks that I wear. It lasts a good 3-4 hours before needing reapplication, I tested it out on a night out!

I'm just about to put an order in for a few more shades, there's a total of 5 shades so I may just treat myself to them all!  Asos currently has an offer on that runs until 9am tomorrow morning where they are £3.50 each instead of their normal £5.49 - bargain! 

Have you tried any other matte lipsticks? How do they compare?

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Best of Beauty Advent Calenders

Hello lovelies,

I've heard much talk flying around this year about Beauty Advent Calenders and I decided that I'll cover the very best of the bunch. I know you're all thinking Christmas is ages away, right? Wrong, only 2 paydays left until the big day! Whether you're looking to treat yourself or a pre-Christmas present for a special somebody, these would fit the bill...

Ciaté Mini Mani Advent Calender - £42.00 (Exclusively available at Selfridges)

""Every girl's diary can now be filled with a daily dose of delectable mini nail treats, as behind each door lies a very colourful surprise. Gorgeously packaged with seventeen of Ciaté's bestselling mini Paint Pots, four mini Caviar blends, and three extremely special exclusive Paint Pot glitter shades you'll not find anywhere else, ever."

The Mini Mani Advent Calender for 2013 includes a generous 17 of Ciaté's best selling mini Paint Pots, 4 mini Caviar blends and three exclusive Paint Pot glitter shades that you'll never ever find anywhere else! At £42, it certainly isn't cheap but would make the perfect gift for nail art fans. Going on the reaction last year, I would purchase sooner rather than later as these sold out super quick.

Boots Beauty Advent Calender - 24 Days of Beauty Treats - £30.00 (available exclusively to Boots instore and online)

"Wake up every morning to a new beauty treat and fill the month of December with gorgeous gifts to pamper yourself from head to toe. Featuring brands such as; Soap & Glory, Nails Inc, Paco Rabanne, Juicy Couture, Rimmel, Mavala, Umberto Giannini and many more...."

Out of all the Beauty Calenders, this one excites me the most, it's a budget friendly option, yet still contains some great little surprises! You get 24 treats ranging from mini's to full sized from some top beauty brands worth over £65.00. There are plenty of spoiler posts online if you want to find out the exact contents but I think that ruins half the fun!

Selfridges Beauty Advent Calender - £84.00 (exclusive to Selfridges)

"Selfridges' exclusive bijoux Christmas advent calendar brings you the best in beauty. From Viktor & Rolf, Yves Saint Laurent, Kiehl's and Giorgio Armani to Lancôme and Maison Martin Margiela, you can discover a precious treat behind every door to make you dazzle, sparkle and shine this festive season."

This little beauty is a little pricey and unfortunately way out of my budget, however it does contain some really high-end beautiful products including fragrance, makeup and skincare from the likes of Lancome, YSL and Kiehl's . I definitely wouldn't be disappointed if I received this, it's a great way of trying out some luxurious products!

(Image of 2012 calender)

Word on the grapevine  You Beauty is set to release a calender for this year, but as of now, there has been no news of when or what the contents will be. If last years is anything to go by, I'm pretty sure it'll be fabulous. Last years cost £59.95 and was worth a whopping £210! If I hear anything, I will be sure to let you know, but keep your eyes peeled ladies!

Have any of these tickled your pickle? Do you still get Advent Calenders?

Friday, 18 October 2013

NOTD: Kiko Nail Lacquer in 254 Wine Red Microglitter

Hello lovelies,

Just a quick one today. I picked this up in my big Beauty Haul as I'd been popping in and out of Kiko and decided that it was about time I tried something.

Wine Red Microglitter is a gorgeous deep claret red with a slight purple shimmer running through it, it's such a perfect colour for the Christmas season. It's quite opaque and if I was in a rush, I would just settle for one coat. The second coat just really brings out the purple sheen.

Application wise, I really like it. The brush is a good size and it goes on without smudging. My only issue is that it takes forever to dry, I tend to now do my nails watching catch-up tv as it takes a good 20 minutes to be touch proof. I have to say with only a days wear and without a topcoat or a base coat, it has started to wear a bit.

I will probably pick up a couple more shades, the range is massive. Kiko is quite readily available in Europe but unless you live in London in the UK, it's ordering online, sorry folks! However, I noticed on the website, they're offering free delivery to new subscribers, I presume that's to a newsletter of some sort.

Kiko Nail Laquer is available from Kiko (surprise, surprise) for £3.90. 

Have you tried anything from Kiko?

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Review: L'Oreal Skin Perfection 3-in-1 Micellar Solution

Hello lovelies,

I was in two minds whether to review this, as everyone and their dog has tried it and there has been so many reviews of it flying around. But I thought I'd add my tuppence for what it's worth, L'Oreal Micellar Solution is the very first micellar water that I've tried, I've been toying with the idea of buying Bioderma to do a comparison. Let me know if you beauties are interested in that!

In case you've completely missed the bandwagon. a micellar solution is simply a very light fluid which feels like water but is designed to effectively dissolve makeup, unclog pores and tone without causing any irritation. Unlike other makeup removers, a micellar solution is non-greasy and removes makeup rather than moving it around your face. Supposedly your skin should feel soft, moisturised and toned after using it but is that really the case?

I think I picked this up in Superdrug on an introductory offer, and at the time, it was causing quite a stir in the beauty world as it's considerably cheaper than Bioderma and easier to get hold of. I tend to use this as a pre-cleanse, I squirt a bit onto a cotton wool pad and sweep it over my face. It does a good job at removing and dissolving the face makeup but when it comes to eyes, I'm sorry to say it let me down. I found it left residue and although I do wear waterproof eyeliner, this is designed to be 3-in-1 and I shouldn't have to use another product. Saying that, I always cleanse, tone and moisturise after using the micellar water, so it's not really a biggy for me, maybe I'm just too picky?

The micellar solution doesn't have much of a scent (well to me anyway), but that makes sense as it's marketed as being suitable for sensitive skin, which is always an added bonus. My skin always feels clean after using this but I can't help finding it slightly drying. My only other niggle is the top, I find you end up squirting it all over as the hole is just too big...I'm getting into dodgy territory, so moving on... 

I suppose my review is a mixed bag, I'd recommend it to someone who is looking for a quick and easy makeup remover or something to pre-cleanse with but personally, I wouldn't use it on it's own. That's just my personal preference.

You can find the L'Oreal 3 in 1 Purifying Micellar Solution in Boots and Superdrug for £4.99, and both stores currently have offers - 3 for 2 and £3.32 respectively, which is great for anyone who wants to stock up.

 Have you tried L'Oreal's answer to micellar water?

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

The Watch Hut Wishlist

Hello lovelies,

Now this is a long story but I'll cut it short, I've been in France about 6 weeks now (heading home in 10 days! Yayyyy) and I still haven't got round to getting a French phone. I use my phone for everything, I am literally reliant on it and feel like I've lost part of me. So when I'm sitting in a French Civil Law Seminar, I want... I need to know how long I've got left before I can go back to bed. My only problem is I don't own a watch, well I do but it's at home and it's far too expensive for me to wear everyday. Why do we always save nice things for best? So I've been doing a bit of online browsing and put together a few of my favourite time tellers.

Casio Baby G-Shock Rubber Strap BGA-110-7B2ER - £70.00
Swatch Unisex Cherry Berry Watch - £32.00
Michael Kors Ladies Lexington Watch MK3230 - £155.40

I'll definitely be putting in an order. The Watch Hut offer free next day delivery if you order before 4pm, which is always a bonus.

Have any of these took your eye?
*Sponsored post*

Monday, 14 October 2013

Beauty Haul

Hello lovelies,

I know, I know!I said ages ago that I had a haul coming up and I've only just got round to it. I came to France with virtually nothing, so I needed to pick up a few things but you know when you only need a couple of things and then there's offers and you end up buying probably three times the amount of stuff that you needed, well that happened. I picked up a few things from ASOS, who had a great offer on Rimmel which just doesn't exist in France (Thank goodness for free international delivery!), Kiko and Yves Rocher, the French version of the Body Shop.

I only went to order a hair mask online and ended up picking up several items, the offers were amazing!

Tradition de Hamman Moroccan Clay Mask for Face & Hair - £8.45 (normally £16.90)
Monoi de Tahiti Lagoon Hair & Body Wash - £1.50 (normally £3.00)
Botanical Hair Care Hair Repair Oil - £7.63 (normally £10.90)
Shine & Fill Base Coat - £7.90
Yves Rocher Lipstick in Peach - £3.60 (normally £7.20)
Summer Glow Moisturing Lotion Face & Body - £9.45 (normally £13.50)

I only went on ASOS to look at dresses and ended up browsing over to Beauty. Shock-horror, these are my first Rimmel lipsticks, I've always been curious but never actually bit the bullet, well I have now.

Rimmel London Stay Matte Pressed Powder in Pink Blossom - £3.99
Rimmel London Wake Me Up Instant Radiance Shimmer Touch in Sand -£4.99
Rimmel London Lasting Finish Lipstick in Nude Pink - £4.99
Rimmel London Kate Matte Lipstick in 110 - £5.49

These were just a few odd things I picked up, apparently you can't buy a shampoo and conditioner together on offer in France, so I ended up buying two lots of the same shampoo and conditioner. Those pesky clever Frenchies making me spend more!

Dove Intensive Repair Shampoo - £1.34 from Boots (normally £2.69)
Dove Intensive Repair Conditioner - £3.99 from Boots
Nuxe Reve de Miel Lip Balm - £9.50 from Feel Unique (I've already done a review on this, which can be found here)
Kiko Nail Lacquer in 254 Wine Red Microglitter - £3.90 from Kiko

Have you tried any of these? What did you think?

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Review: Nuxe Reve de Miel Lip Balm

Hello lovelies,

So I know a post on a lip balm may seem a bit snore-worthy but believe me, this works miracles. The weather in Bordeaux seems to have dropped about 15 degrees over night, no joke, and my skin had been suffering. My lips just can't take the bitter winds and I know the Nuxe balm had been so hyped up, it just fell in my basket.

It's certainly a luxury lip balm...if I'm spending £10 on a lip balm, I want a little frosted glass jar, I want it to look pretty on my dressing table and not like any old chapstick. And it certainly does, thumbs up so far.

Here's what Nuxe say about Reve de Miel:
"Effective by nature 
A repairing, nourishing lip balm with a rich, delicious texture to restore suppleness and comfort to dry and chapped lips. A must-have product: one is sold every 28 seconds throughout the world*! A repairing, nourishing lip balm with a rich, delicious texture to restore suppleness and comfort to dry and chapped lips. A must-have product: one is sold every 28 seconds throughout the world *!
Precious benefits for my skin" 

Now whether one is sold every 28 seconds around the World, I have no idea and how do you even work something like that out? To cut a long story short, Nuxe reckon a lot of people like their lip balm, but do I?

(I'm an awful blogger, I just couldn't wait to try it!)

The texture? Not like anything I've tried before and certainly not what I was expecting. It's quite waxy but at the same time, gritty... I'm really selling this, but that texture almost immediately disappears and I suppose in sorts, it exfoliates your lips. What really impresses me about this little wonder pot, it's that it really lasts. You can either use it lightly or pop it on as an overnight treatment and in the morning, you can still feel it moisturising away.

Onto the scent, now I'm not a great fan of honey and I thought I'm really not going to like this, it's not going to be for me. But strangely, it smells like chocolate orange, could this get any better!? It's not too strong or overpowering and I really like it.  It might not be for everyone but heyho...

So I'm going to cut to the chase and just say it works. If you've got horribly dry, chapped lips and want to inject some moisture back into them, this soothes, heals and softens, it's just a lifesaver for lips. 

I feel like I've rambled on about it, but yes I do feel passionately about this lip balm. Seriously, nothing else I've tried even comes close. 

You can find Nuxe Reve de Miel online at Feel Unique for £9.50 or in selected M&S stores for the same price. I know it sounds expensive but you do get a good amount of product and I can see this lasting through the whole Autumn/ Winter.

Have you tried Reve de Miel?

Friday, 11 October 2013

Beauty Discount Codes October 2013

Hello lovelies,

Sorry for disappearing off the face of the Earth. I haven't had internet for the last week, thanks to a lovely French internet company who had the worst customer service that I've ever come across but enough about them and on to the beauty!

Save 10% off hair when you buy 3 or more products

£10 off orders over £100
Code: VC30SEPT
Valid until 13 October

10% off orders
Code: VM34
Valid until 13th October

Free 75ml L'Occitane Shampoo and a free 75ml Conditioner when you spend £10. 

If you have any other codes, please feel free to add them below and I'll add them to the list.

Happy Shopping!

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Review: Max Factor False Lash Effect Fusion Mascara

Hello lovelies,

For those of you who haven't read my September Favourites, I raved about this mascara and added that I might just like it more than my beloved L'Oreal False Lash Telescopic something or other like that...

I'm almost certain I picked this up in Tesco on some ridiculous offer ages ago, I think it was something like £2.00 and I just threw it to the back of the draw thinking it would be a useful spare to have. And the day came, when my L'Oreal had come to be just too dried up to use so I picked this out.

False Lash Effect Fusion promises volume, length and an "extreme finish". They're quite bold claims and I'm always a bit wary when a product claims to do everything. I would say the wand is of average size, and has small bristles. I actually prefer plastic wands to bristle wands, I use find them easier to work with, and the small bristles allow me to get into the inner corner without making a smudgy mess. The wand is quite short, which makes it easier to apply the mascara, I find.

(Sorry for the fuzzy picture, I couldn't get it to focus but it gives you a general idea of the wand)

I don't curl my eyelashes or do any particular prep, I just like to bang on a slick of mascara and be on my way. When you have French language lectures at 8.30am, I try to make myself look presentable, as quickly as possible. I find the formula quite runny but it doesn't clump, I find with a couple of layers, all my eyelashes are coated, they look long and full of volume. 

I'm not a great fan of the falsies look, I find this just enhances your natural eyelashes without being too in your face. It stays put all day and I don't find it smudges at all. It's quite easy to remove, some mascaras I find myself scrubbing at my eyelids but this comes off with a sweep of eye makeup remover. 

I'm so pleased with the results I get from this mascara.
Max Factor False Lash Effect Fusion Mascara is available from Boots for £10.99 (currently on offer for £8.99) 

Have you tried any of Max Factor's Mascaras? Do you tend to switch up your mascara or stick to the same one?


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