Wednesday, 29 August 2012

notd | mosaic

I've never bought anything from W7 before, as I've written them off as a brand that blatantly copies high end brand's packaging (their boxed powders look so similar to Benefit's) but when I saw swatches of Nails Inc's Sprinkles collection compared to some W7 knock-offs, I knew I could forgive them just this once.
I may have went a little snap-happy...
 Although the rest of the W7 collection differs slightly to Nails Inc's, Mosaic (what a lovely name) is almost identical to Pudding Lane - you can see comparison swatches on this blog.The polish consists of navy, mint green and gold glitter particles suspended in a semi-opaque light blue base, I only needed two coats and I dabbed on a bit of extra polish where the glitter was sparse - but I can imagine this'll still be a pain to take off! The effect it gives is quite different from any other glitter I have as the pieces of glitter from the first coat are covered with the light blue from the second coat so they aren't as visible. I hope that makes sense.

I bought mine from Watt Brothers in Sauchiehall Street in Glasgow for £1.99, the cheapest I've found online is here for £1.95 but I'm not sure how much postage costs. This website has free delivery, and they're selling it for £3.45.

Monday, 27 August 2012

superdrug is amazing.

I go to Superdrug for any bits and bobs I need as I don't have a Boots near me and I never really notice the amount of deals they have on - that is, until I realised that I only paid £5.16 for 5 items (so basically as cheap as Poundland).
There are loads of products that are half price or have some kind of discount - something I see in Boots less often, and although Boots Advantage Card offers 4 points per £1 and Superdrug's Beauty Card only gives out 1 point per £1, Superdrug's discounts make up for it, and besides, currently if you spend more than £10 you earn 10 points per £1.
I highly recommend checking out if your local store has a jewellery stand, as Superdrug has their own jewellery line but unfortunately it isn't available on their website. There are always a few items on sale, and they're really pretty!
I managed to get three pairs of earrings and a necklace for £2.47, and they're all really pretty pieces that I would wear day to day - I especially love the star stud earrings and the necklace (I'm sure there's a specific word to describe that type of necklace, but I can't for the life of me remember it).
Just to show that wasn't an awesome one-time offer, I also got these cuff bracelets a while ago for only 49p each.
I spotted a few skincare brands that were on sale so I decided to try out a blemish stick from the brand Witch as it was only £1.35 and stock up on Carmex lip balm while it was half price for £1.34.

Have you ventured into Superdrug lately? What did you get?

Friday, 24 August 2012

a handy-dandy guide to disabling your captcha

If you've ever commented on a blog, you may sometimes see that you have to enter two words, or a word and a number to publish your comment, and if you're commenting on quite a few blogs it may get quite annoying.
If you have a Blogspot blog, when you start your blog it automatically enables the word verification feature, although you might not know it as the blog author doesn't need to enter anything when they comment on their own posts.
If you're worried about spam on your blog, you can always delete comments or or switch it to a setting where a comment will not be displayed without your approval.
I for one am put off commenting knowing I have to go through this process just to leave a few words, so if there are a few of you wondering how to disable Captcha on your (Blogspot) blog, here's a little guide. It's easy, I promise!

Below is a menu that you should be familiar with, it's basically your control panel. Go to the bottom and click on Settings.

A sub-menu should appear. Click on Posts and Comments.
Scroll down until you find Word Verification. If it says Yes, that means your Captcha is enabled. Change it to No.

And there we go! Simples.

 So not your usual beauty-related post today, but hopefully I helped someone :)

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

notd | beetlejuice

I couldn't stop myself from buying something in the ASOS sale - personally I blame them as it takes less than 5 clicks to get from being at the checkout to the order confirmation stage.
The order contained a few bits and bobs and a certain Models Own Beetlejuice Mini Trio - which is still available on the ASOS website for only £4.50 (link) - they're low in stock so if you want one, hurry! In case they've sold out, Boots do the same set for £8 (link).

The set contains three 6ml nail polishes from the popular Beetlejuice collection. They aren't the most opaque nail polishes I've used, they all needed three coats and the pink one looked like it could've done with a fourth. The good news is that they all dried pretty quickly, but with my rather hasty application I managed to trap a few bubbles in there.
I have to admit, the pink colour (Pink Cocktail) is my favourite, and it's exclusive to this set. Although it was on the sheer side, I liked the formula and it didn't look at all streaky on the second coat, so it's possible to wear this sheer. It's a super bright pink with strong blue shimmer - very Barbie-like!
Next up is Pinky Brown, which is actually a burgundy that has pink and orange shimmer which is visible when it hits the light. I found this one to be the most opaque of the bunch, I think two coats could suffice.
Golden Green is exactly what the name suggests - a green with a golden duochrome. This one bubbled the most, and since it is metallic it tends to look a bit streaky but I'm prepared to put up with it for the colour! Ah, the hardships of beauty.

You can buy the full size Pinky Brown and Golden Green here for £5 each.
Which colour is your favourite?

Monday, 20 August 2012

magnificent masks

I make sure that I apply a face mask at least once a week and the majority of my favourite ones are actually homemade, although there are a few store-bought masks that I quite like. I like homemade masks the most as you know exactly what's going into them, you probably already have the ingredients lying around in your kitchen and they're really easy to make. Here are a few how-to's on my favourite masks, the first of which is an oatmeal mask.
This is really easy to make, just put a teaspoon of oats, a teaspoon of natural yogurt and a drizzle of honey in a bowl and mix together. Then apply liberally all over your face and wait for 10-15 minutes.
This isn't the easiest to take off, I get some kitchen paper and wipe off the excess before washing the rest away, otherwise my sink ends up being blocked!
I'm pretty sure this mask will work for all skin types, as I have oily skin and my skin loves it. The yogurt and honey will moisturise dry skin, also the oats will gently exfoliate, the yogurt will soften and protect your skin with it's antioxidant properties and the honey is just all-round amazing for your skin (think antibacterial with antioxidants, all that good stuff).
Next up is the seaweed mask. I found out about this from Michelle Phan on YouTube, who claimed it was great for oily skin types. I gave it a go, and loved it (apart from the smell, yuck!).
Just cut a few strips of dried seaweed and place them in warm water for a minute or two. Then smear the strips on your face and leave on for 5-10 minutes.
Seaweed is great because among other things it detoxifies the skin and contains antioxidants. If you want to know all the benefits, just Google it.
I found my seaweed at a Chinese supermarket, but I think large supermarkets should stock it.
I mentioned at the start of the post that I have a few favourite store-bought face masks too, and these are the Lush face masks and the Clearasil Daily Clear Vitamins & Extracts Wash and Mask.
I normally get about 6-8 uses out of the Lush face masks, which is annoying as they are meant to expire one month from buying, so they last me about two months. They're also meant to be kept in the fridge to keep the contents fresh.
The one I have, Love Lettuce, is a mask catered for normal to oily skin and is slightly exfoliating, and the only reason I got it is because I had 5 empty Lush pots and you get a free face mask if you bring them into a store. I also want to try the Cupcake face mask too!

The Clearasil Daily Clear Vitamins & Extracts Wash and Mask was the product that was the "Big Skincare Mystery" at the start of the year. I tried the little sample I had and my skin felt really good afterwards, however I don't get the same feeling with the full sized product?! You're meant to leave the mask on your skin for only two minutes, which is great if you're in a rush, and this can also double up as a daily facial wash.
If I have any actual spots that I need taken care of, I find that putting toothpaste on said spot for a few minutes is great for drying it out, but my holy grail for spot-zapping is (brewed) chamomile teabags. I had a really bad allergic reaction a few months back, which resulted in horrible pimples all over my cheekbones. I put a teabag on each cheek for a few hours each day, maybe if I was watching a film I'd put it on then, and my skin was back to normal in four days, and if I do the same process to a spot it reduces the swelling massively, and the spot ends up going away much quicker.

Do you have any DIY skincare solutions?

Saturday, 18 August 2012

uk magazine freebies - august 2012

I only picked up one magazine from this month's selection, there aren't that many free gifts on offer and admittedly I still have a few from last month to read, oops!
*All of these are the September issues, but they're on sale in August :)*
Tatler has a free mini Lancome Hypnose Star mascara attached to it, the mascara contains 2ml but the magazine itself is rather expensive at £4.10. It also has another mini mag attached to it, in the form of "Teen Tatler" which is apparently the first of it's kind!

Up next is Elle which has a choice of three Jemma Kidd I-Glamour Define Eyeliners, the colours to pick from are Black, Blue or Copper. Elle retails for £3.90.

Marie Claire (£3.70) doesn't disappoint in the freebies section by giving you the choice of either an Inika Mineral Eyeshadow or Eyeliner.

And that's it! Not much of a selection this month, let me know if I missed anything out. Did you pick up any magazines this month?

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

notd | kiko khaki

For the last day of MakeupSavvy's 15 Day Nail Challenge I thought I would try out a nail polish that I haven't used before - the polish in question being Kiko 394 which I hauled here.
The nail on my index finger is a bit bubbly because my top coat is near the end of it's life, I really need to get a new one instead of ruining every manicure I do with it!
Although you couldn't tell from the photo, the colour of the polish makes my skin look slightly red, but I don't think this'll be a problem come the autumn/winter when I'm super pale - and although I've never owned an olive greenish khaki colour I really like it and can see myself wearing it a lot. Oh, and it took two coats to make the nail polish opaque.

You can buy Kiko nail polishes here for £1.50 and when you register you can get get free delivery on orders over £25.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

mac mineralize concealer vs. maybelline pure cover mineral concealer

 I've been putting this post off for over a month now, all the photos have been ready and waiting, every time I open up the folder "blog" on my laptop I can see them shouting "Me! Me! Pick me!" but I ignore them.
The reason? Well, I'm lazy and this post will be slightly longer than usual and I'm not that experienced at reviewing concealers and what if people say "Oooh she's not that experienced at reviewing concealers, I shouldn't trust her review"...
The real reason? None. So off I go...
At first this post was just going to be a plain review of the MAC concealer, but since the concealer I had been using previously was also a mineral concealer I wanted to compare them and pit them against each other in the ultimate SHOWDOWN! (Don't get excited, it's not going to be that dramatic.)

Obviously since MAC is high-end, the packaging is going to be a lot more pleasing to the eye. Maybelline hasn't done too bad though, the design is still pretty sleek. Both contain 5ml. The main difference is that while MAC has a brush applicator, Maybelline favours a doe-foot one - this difference personally doesn't affect me at all as my preferred way to apply concealer is to dab it on the back of my hand and blend it into my skin with a fluffy eyeshadow brush.
The one gripe I have with the packaging is that you can't get the very last of the product out of the tube, also you can't see when you're running low.
The colour I have of the MAC concealer (on the left) is NW15, I was colour-matched to such a light shade because I mainly use it under my eyes. The shade of the Maybelline concealer is 03 Sand, and the shade works well both under my eyes and on blemishes.
No Makeup
Mac Mineralize Concealer Freshly Applied
Mac Mineralize Concealer After 8 Hours

The MAC Mineralize Concealer is described on the MAC website as having "medium coverage with a natural luminous finish." It definitely looks very natural, and if you build the concealer up it will give you medium coverage. I tried this over a spot, and although it didn't completely cover up the redness, it certainly made it less noticeable. The concealer has really good staying power, you can see from the photos that my eye looks more or less the same after 8 hours as it does from when it was freshly applied.
I find that if I don't wear this over foundation it sometimes lets some of the colour of my under-eye through, which results in the area looking slightly greyish-purple under bright light.
No Makeup
Maybelline Pure Cover Mineral Concealer Freshly Applied
Maybelline Pure Cover Mineral Concealer After 8 Hours

The Maybelline concealer offers slightly more coverage than the MAC one, and I also use it on any redness or spots I might have. It's staying power isn't as impressive as MAC's, as you can see there is a considerable difference between the photos showing it freshly applied and after 8 hours.

So who won? Well it depends on what you're looking for. If you want something very natural that lasts a long time and you'll mainly use for under-eyes, I'd recommend the MAC Mineralize Concealer.
But if you're looking for something that can be used both on blemishes and on dark circles however isn't full coverage and doesn't cost the earth, the Maybelline Pure Cover Mineral Concealer should do the trick.

Buy: Mac Mineralize Concealer, £16
Maybelline Pure Cover Mineral Concealer, £3.49

What's your favourite concealer?

Sunday, 12 August 2012

notd | patriotic

Just in time for the end of the Olympics I decided to whip out my nail polishes and get patriotic!
To create the Union Flag I basically followed this YouTube video, expect I used a few of the nail art tools that I showed in this post to make achieving the straight lines a bit easier, although as you can see from the close-up photo it still isn't as perfect as I would've liked!
The navy nail polish took two coats for it to become completely opaque.
L-R Barry M Navy, OPI Alpine Snow, Eyeko Saucy Polish

Friday, 10 August 2012

ebay purchases #2

I've been buying a few rings off the marvelous site that is eBay, I think about a month ago I owned less than five rings but now it's safe to say that my collection has expanded. I also invested in some nail art tools, so now I can spend even more time doing my nails! Yay for time-wasting.
And here is the nail art tool set kit thingy-ma-bobble. It contains seven brushes, four of them being standard small brushes, as well as a dotting tool, an angled brush and a fan brush. They also sport pink bristles, which is a plus.
You can buy the set here for £1.47 with free postage from Hong Kong.
Next up is the first ring of the lot and it happens to be this adorable fox one which when you wear it it's tail wraps around your finger. For some reason I love animal jewellery, and this is no exception.
You can buy it here for 99p with free postage from Hong Kong. They also have an option for it in silver.
I bought these earrings as soon as I saw them, I'm not sure why I love them so much but I do. The pastel colours stood out to me and before I knew it I was entering my PayPal password and the deed was done.
They cost £1.89 from here with free postage from Hong Kong.
This little bow ring caught my eye because it's so delicate, and if you look closely you can see that the bow is made of mesh of some sort which I thought was lovely attention to detail.
It's adjustable and also available in silver, here for 99p with free shipping from Hong Kong.
I'm a sucker for sparkly bracelets, and this one is no exception. It's just a circle of delightful rhinestone-y goodness, and that's all there is to it.
It'll cost you £1 from here with postage completely free from the wondrous place that is Hong Kong.
The last item is another ring, this one sporting a little pink retro-style camera and the lens has a little rhinestone inside to make it look as if it's flashing!
It's adjustable and available here in pink, black or white for 99p with free shipping from (you've guessed it) Hong Kong.

Have you found any amazing bargains on eBay recently?

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

betrousse spring beauty box

I was lucky enough to win a Betrousse Spring Beauty Box over on Been There, Done That, Got The Lipstick but of course just because I didn't pay for it doesn't mean my opinion is swayed in the slightest!
Betrousse is one of the newer additions to the beauty box world, however it's concept is rather different from all the other beauty boxes out there.
Instead of paying monthly, you can pick a certain "kit" on the website, and you know exactly what it's got in it (a bit like Latest in Beauty's themed boxes, here's a post I did on one of their boxes). All the products are full-sized and are French brands, so it gives us UK ladies a chance to try something new at a discounted price - my box is worth £78 and is being sold for £19. Bargain.
At the moment there are four boxes on offer, the Summer Break kit, the Must Haves kit, the Organic & Natural Beauty kit, and my kit, the Spring Beauty kit.

So, what's inside?
Laboratoires Forte Pharma Turboslim Chronoactiv - This is a weight loss tablet thingy. I'll try it out but since I don't really pay that much attention to my weight (so long as my dress size doesn't change, I'm happy where I am) but this may come in use around Christmas time! The pack contains 28 tablets, will last around half a month and is available at Boots and Superdrug.

Voulez-Vous Warming Body Oil - Ooh-err! I don't think I'll be using this for it's *ahem* intended purpose but I'll try to use this as a body lotion and see how it goes. There is 10ml in the packet and it's pina colada (scented? flavoured? I don't know).

BYS Cosmetics Lipstick in Chocolate Sparkle - I'm rather excited to try this out, partly because it's a brand I've never heard of and partly because I've never tried a bronze lipstick before - I've always gravitated to pinks, reds and corals. Also it retails for only £3 and this website carries the makeup line and ships to the UK so if I'm impressed I can order a few more!
Sentara Bio Relaxing Intense Balm Eye & Lip Contour - I'm not exactly sure what this product does, but the box mentions it reduces under-eye circles so I've been using it as an eye cream. I'm expecting great things as the price tag is a hefty £39, and I'll be sure to update you if any miracles happen.

Allo Nature Organic Hand Sanitizer - I don't take hand sanitizer with me on a day to day basis as I never feel like I need it, so I'll be saving this for I go to London as my hands always feel grubby after I've been on the public transport there. The bottle is quite large and holds 75ml and the gel has a lovely lemony scent.

You can check out the Betrousse website here.

Sunday, 5 August 2012

mua mini haul

The MUA website currently has a great deal on, with the code MUA25 you can bag 25% off and free delivery on orders over £10 - and with the products being so darn cheap and good quality I had to take this chance to expand my MUA makeup collection. If you want to use this code, hurry because it expires on the 9th of August.
Here's what I bought, the total price came to £9 when I used the discount code and delivery was really quick, I made the order on the 2nd and it was in my hands by the 4th.
Undressed Eyeshadow Palette (£1 off when I ordered), Lipstick in Shade 3, BB Cream in Light, Out There Plumping Lipglosses in Pin Up Pink (darker colour) and Shocking Pink (lighter colour).
Is there anything in particular you'd like to see reviewed/swatched?