Monday 30 April 2012

NOTD: OPI Metallic 4 Life

Another quick post tonight girls!
I'm trying to get my number up for April as i have totally FAILED blogwise this month. This is the lowest amount of posts per month i have had since i started my blog a YEAR ago! So i decided to snap a few piccies of my goffik, metallic Nicki Minaj mani yesterday as it just looked so sparkly and enticing haha.

I first posted about the OPI Nicki Minaj nail polish collection back in February. At the time i only posted about two of the shades out of the 4 i have so i thought it was about time to show the others some love. You can check out 'Fly' and 'Did it on em' HERE but today is the turn of 'Metallic 4 Life'...

I've kind of saved this polish and not wanted to waste it as it is possibly my favourite out of the collection. However, the other day i just REALLY fancied it and decided to give it it's first solo outing. Up to now i've only used it as an accent nail. 

One coat of this polish will do NOTHING for you. It's silver glitter contained in a greyish black jelly-type polish. Used on top of another colour it may be quite effective but one coat of this alone is VERY lacklustre. HOWEVER, once you add a second (or even a third) coat it really does start to look FABULOUS!! 
Over the weekend i received some beautiful pieces of handmade jewellery from Rhi of and all the skulls and crosses made me feel VERY rock chick so i just went for it! More to come on the jewellery later in the week. 

This polish hasn't disappointed me and i will definitely be coveting it and keeping it for special occasions. I may even attempt to get my hands on the full size because i will be very sad when it is gone. You don't get that much in a mini size. 
That leaves the only shade out of the collection that is unblogged to be Pink Friday... I guess i didn't rush to blog about it because i knew that it was the shade that would get the most attention elsewhere and i wanted to be different haha. As soon as we actually get some decent Spring/Summer weather i may indeed get my girly pink head on again and break it out. 

Do you love glitter?? Are you a metal freak when it comes to your nails?? What are your favourite OPI shades??

New Handbag Essential??

Bit of a different one tonight girlies...
I write mainly about hair and makeup but, like all us girls, i also use lotions and potions. I don't often write about them because i really haven't got much of a clue about skincare products and what goes into them and i think that everybody's skin is so different that my opinion is probably null and void for most other people. But this product arrived on my mat a few weeks ago and i just knew that it would be a handbag essential for me.

Vaseline 2 in 1 Hand Cream and Antibac* is a great idea! I work in a kitchen as part of my part time job and i'm constantly having to wash and sanitise my hands. This, however, comes with its own issues. As a hairdresser also, i am all too familiar with dry, sore hands and dermatitis and a good hand cream is essential. This product addresses both issues in one step!

Up until i got this product i had been using the Carex Moisture Plus hand sanitiser and, although it is formulated to moisturise, i really wouldn't say it is as effective as a decent hand cream. Vaseline are known for their excellent moisturisers and hand products and is a much richer product. My hands feel much softer after using this than the Carex. It doesn't take ages to sink in, although it obviously takes a little longer than your average hand sanitising gels. 

With a product like this, there isn't really anything SPECTACULAR about them to rave about. They just WORK and are functional and that's why they are a winner. This is a great little product to pop in your bag when you're out and about as you never know when you might need it. Also if you work in the service industry or in a kitchen a product like this is convenient and functional. And everyone wants soft hands! 
This is a new release from Vaseline and as soon as i see it in my Boots i am going to pick up another one as i want one to keep at work as well as the one i carry in my bag. Vaseline products are always reasonably priced, in my opinion, so i reckon it's worth it. 

What are your handbag essentials??

*Product sent to me for consideration

Saturday 28 April 2012

A Few Changes and a FOTN

Evening lovers!!
And it really IS evening.... i was determined to blog today but i had a dinner invitation from one of my besties that i do not see very often that i couldn't refuse (wine, curry and CAKE - need i say more). But, anyhoo, i'm home now and determined to get this post out there as tomorrow is reserved for my bloody Finance assignment for uni (Blehhh)

So there have been a few changes..... 

First change is that i have done back over to the Darkside. As my blog name suggests i am a Brunette through and through, HOWEVER, recently i have been experimenting with ombre, followed by mahogany, then back to ombre again (confused?? Yeah i was as well). In the end one just has to draw a line and say ENOUGH!! So i have returned to what i know best which is my medium/dark chocolate brown. 
It's a huge relief to have hair extensions that match again. My clip ins now blend perfectly once more and, although my 16" Halo Hair Halo is still dyed mahogany, a box of dye is all that is needed to rectify that. Although my natural hair has grown so MUCH that my hair at the front is beginning to overtake the Halo so i fear i may have to write it off and purchase a longer one!!

SECOND change, and one which i have been building up to for some time now, is that i now have METAL in my face!! I've been deliberating on Twitter for a few weeks whether or not now was the time to finally go for it and get the nose piercing that i have wanted on and off since i was a teenager. In the end the verdict was almost a unanimous GO FOR IT!! So guess what..... I DID IT YESTERDAY!!

And i am so pleased with it! I removed my tongue piercing several months ago, after 12yrs together, as i just felt like it was time to get rid of it. I don't think it's becoming of a (nearly) 30yr old to be having metal in their mouth. Plus i suspect i chipped a tooth on it, which finally persuaded me to part with it. I did miss it for a little while, and i did feel like i was lacking something as a result, but i'm over the moon with my nose stud. Much more grown up. It's pretty basic, but eventually i'd love a diamond/gold stud in it (better save the pennies). 

THIRD change is that i have FINALLY embraced Gel eyeliner. And it's a massive HIT!! Why didn't one of you force me to try it sooner?? Yeah i've read and seen photos of you beautiful ladies wearing your MAC Blacktrack and your Inglot Gel Liner and thought you all looked FABULOUS, but it never inspired me to stop buying lippy and focus on my waterline. Well NO MORE cos i've got it and it has completely revolutionised how i do my eye makeup! Also, when my hair is darker i seem to make a bigger deal of my eyeliner. So while i was at it with the photos for this post i decided to do a little FOTN (from last night when i went out to show off my new piercing) to go with it. 

Face: BeneFit PoreFessional Primer
Rimmel 'Wake me Up' Foundation in Classic Beige
MAC Mineralise Skinfinish Natural in Medium Plus
Sleek Contour Kit in Medium
Cheeks: MAC Tres Cheek blush in 'LoveCloud'
Eyes: Maybelline Gel Liner in 001 'Intense Black'
(No eyeshadow - just didn't feel like i wanted it on this occasion)
Rimmel Day2Night Mascara in Black
Lips: A combo of MAC Myth and MAC Lovelorn
(Myth went on first then finished with a sweep of Lovelorn)

And that's all she wrote....

I'd like to make it known that i HATE Rimmel 'Wake me Up'. I do NOT have spot prone skin but this never fails to break me out. I don't find it lasts well AT ALL (patchy is an understatement), and it is only when i use it with my BeneFit primer that i like the finish. It actually looks a lot better on these photos (with flash, would you believe) than i think it does in natural light. But i would NOT recommend it to anyone. I know there are those who love it, and each to their own, but i also know a lot who feel the same as i do about it. I'm only still using it as i do not believe in wasting makeup. 

So i hope you didn't mind too much reading my waffle about my new discoveries. I've been so excited about it and had to do a little squealy post to mark the occasion.

What have you done to reinvent yourself lately??

Saturday 21 April 2012

London Calling!! Soapbox PR Press Day...

Good evening ladies!!
I've been on the loose in London this week. I was so excited to get down there again as i haven't been since the end of January and i feel so out of the loop where i live it's unreal!! I was invited by the lovely Kate from Soapbox PR to attend their press day at the GORGEOUS Haymarket Hotel and learn a bit more about some new products from their most popular brands. I also got chance to meet up with the gorgeous Sharmin on my travels and we went to the event together. 

Such a beautiful setting!! The venue itself was gorgeous enough! Even before we got to seeing the products....

A brand which was completely new to me is Amie (meaning 'Friend' in French)..
Created by a lady called Fiona, with her daughter in mind, Amie is a skincare range which is made from natural ingredients and is designed to accommodate the changes in our skin which we all experience during our lifetime but at an affordable price. The range is perfect for young skin as well as providing gentle protection and TLC for older skin. As you will see above, Fiona's efforts have been rewarded with numerous nominations and Skincare awards and her products are now stocked in Waitrose, Tesco and John Lewis as well as online. 
The two new products Fiona wanted to show off on the day were the Radiant Dawn Exfoliating Daily Wash (which has the loveliest apple scent) and Skin Shield (which has recently been reformulated to incorporate SPF). 

Twisted Sista (by Urban Therapy) originated in London and was intended for Afro-Caribbean locks. However, the brand has now expanded and caters for all types of hair, whether you want the perfect curl or super straight frizz-free hair. In fact, their De-Frizz Shampoo and Conditioner won an award at this year's Hair Awards for Best Shampoo and Conditioner Under £5. 
Again, these products are extremely well formulated and are free from Sulphates and Parabens. Ingredients such as Argan Oil, Green Tea and Lychee mean that your hair is well cared for and controlled without breaking the bank. New products on show on the day included Leave-In Conditioners, Hot Curl Perfector and a Heat Protection Spray. All of these new products will soon be found in a Tesco store near you and they are all UNDER £5!! 

Bronze Ambition is a brand that i have reviewed before on this blog (read my thoughts on their Glo'N'Go Instant Matte Tan HERE). They were there to show off new products including a self tanning mousse and their new Deep'N'Dark range which comprises of a self tanning cream and an Instant tan. This promises a deeper, more intense colour which would be perfect for darker skintones or those of us who just like our tans DARK! 
I'm not going to bang on about it too much in this post because i used the tan for the first time last night and am rather impressed so you'll have to stay tuned for my review later in the week. Bronze Ambition are available from Poundland stores and are soon to be picked up by Tesco. To view the full range of products check out their Website

 You'll probably not be surprised that i was the most excited about this next brand. I make no secret of the fact that i am BONKERS for Diva Professional Styling tools and was a little overexcited about meeting the amazing Joseph Koniak (he's styling Bond girls for the new Daniel Craig flick don't ya know) and hearing what he had to say about some recent additions to the Diva range. 

Sharmin and I were both pretty blown away and fell in love with almost everything he showed us. I really was like a kid in a candy store! The most notable, for me, were the new Jumbo Hot Wand (i assure you, you will NOT find bigger from anywhere else, and that's a fact), the new Big Waves waving iron which has Argan Oil infused plates (another Diva exclusive) and the Feel The Heat Elite Styler which is also infused with Argan Oil. I'm told it works very similar to a Teflon coating on a frying pan and creates the most perfect, shiny finish whether you want a sleek finish or a glossy curl. Basically I NEED THIS IN MY LIFE!! 

I passed this to Sharmin in order to demonstrate the Mini-ness of the Diva Mini Styler, but she just decided to hide behind it.... Can't say i had her down as the camera shy type lol. 

We were extremely well looked after from the moment we got there and everyone was so friendly. Was lovely to finally meet Kate from Soapbox, after speaking via email for so long, and i have to say she did a fantastic job. I feel very lucky to have been invited. So thank you to Kate for a fun afternoon and all the lovely products i came home with! There are going to be reviews GALORE to come out of this little lot!! 

I really was so gutted to be leaving London again after the event and it's looking like my plans to relocate are going to be brought forward. I'd better get my thinking cap on and apply for some jobs as well as hunting for somewhere semi-affordable to live! Lots to do! Fingers and toes firmly crossed i can make it work. 


Tuesday 17 April 2012

New MAC Goodies!!

Afternoon lovelies.
I've gone and done it AGAIN haven't i! No post in over a week. Unfortunately, on top of all the usual issues, the last fortnight has been riddled with all kinds of other drama and this has prevented me from even picking up my laptop until now. 
I hadn't done a MAC order since my Viva Glam Nicki lippy soooo, when my student loan went in last week i thought it would be the perfect excuse to sneak in a couple of cheeky purchases!! I wasn't overly inspired this time to tell you the truth but i just HAD to check out the new Tres Cheek blushes and pick up a lippy i've been after for a while but kept forgetting about....

Powder Blush in 'LoveCloud'....

And Honeylove (Matte) Lipstick

I expected to be more blown away by the Tres Cheek blushes than i actually was. Lovecloud was the only one that shouted BUY ME. Luckily this gave me the opportunity to snap up one of my most longed for MAC lipsticks of late, which was Honeylove. 

Lovecloud is described to be a Bright Mid-Tone Pink and I'm inclined to agree with them on that one. Although it can seem to lean one way or the other depending on what light you're in. I'd say its got hints of both yellow AND blue in there. It is a Satin finish but has quite a frosty sheen to it which appears when you swatch it. I'm an NC30 skintone as a rule and this shows up nicely on me. In fact, i'd dare say that it would compliment most skintones depending on how you apply and build it. On darker tones it would give a lovely pink glow, whilst on paler ladies you would get more of a POP of colour. I've been applying this with my MAC 168 (yes i finally got my first MAC brush thanks to Yu) and on me it gives a subtle pink glow with a lovely sheen. 

Honeylove (and no, i couldn't wait until after this post to christen it, as you can see) was always going to be right up my alley. It is a matte finish and is described on the MAC site as being 'light beige with rose'. I had heard others saying that it was quite ashy, which worried me slightly but i have to say it's plenty warm enough for me! I absolutely adore it. I think it is on a par with Shy Girl now as my favourite go to lipstick. I can always reach for these shades nomatter what the occasion. I also really love the MAC matte formula. It is creamy to apply and gives a good matte finish without drying the lips. It's only my second matte lipstick from MAC (the other is Quick Sizzle, which i haven't had that much chance to wear yet) and i have been enjoying wearing it on its own, or with a slick of gloss over the top (I've been using MAC C-Thru). 

How pretty is the Lovecloud swatch!! I'm going to really enjoy this over the warmer months and i've got money on it looking AMAZING with a tan! Honeylove seems to swatch darker than it appears on my lips. 

And here are both products on my face. I did layer the blush slightly for it to show up on the photo but in real life you don't need too much to get this kind of colour payoff from it. All in all i'd say that it's another HIT from MAC. I didn't use a gloss with Honeylove for this post as i wanted you to see it exactly as it is. I actually like matte lips but its so hard to find the right formula. My favourite finish from MAC (as you'll know if you've been paying attention) is Cremesheen but i'm really enjoying matte shades too at the moment. 

Lovecloud is an LE release and i fear it may have already sold out on the MAC website so your best bet is stalking MAC counters to get your hands on it. I'm happy to report that Honeylove is a permanent shade. 

What are your recent MAC purchases?? Did you grab anything from the Tres Cheek collection?? What shades are you loving for summer??

Thursday 5 April 2012

Sleek Blush By 3: Pumpkin

Afternoon lovelies!!! 
This blog post is the first to be brought to you via my new office. As a sufferer of ME and Fibromyalgia i was lucky enough to be offered some equipment from student finance to help with my University studies and it all turned up this week!! This chair is AMAZING!!!
But less of that.... on with the blog!!
This is a product i have been so excited about and i FINALLY got the opportunity this week to bus it into Chesterfield and snap it up. It is the 
Sleek Blush By 3 'Pumpkin' Palette. 

Isn't it a BEAUT!! I had seen photos from various events featuring these when they first came out and, once i'd seen this, it just HAD to be mine!! There were actually two from the range of 5 different palettes that caught my eye. The other was 'Lace' which has turned out to be the most popular and was, of course, sold out, however it was this one which got me the most hot and bothered. 

The palette is made up of 3 full size Sleek blush shades consisting of one shimmer, one satin and one matte finish and retails for £9.99 (a regular single Sleek blush will set you back £4.30 so this is a real bargain). It comes in the regular, neat, tidy black Sleek packaging which i think looks so smart and chic and the mirror you get is MASSIVE! 

So here are the shades....

Lantern (Shimmer)

Squash (Satin)

P Pie (Matte)

I really think this shade range is perfect! You've got a red/coral shade, a pink shade and a vivid orange shade. This palette just screams "Take me on holiday" to me. You really wouldn't need any other blush!! And these shades would be perfect with a tan.

My favourite, without a doubt, has to be Squash. This is my dream pink blush!! It goes perfectly with my skintone and new hair colour (more on that in another post). I will definitely be doing a FOTD with this and my Revlon Lip Butter in Cupcake as i've been loving this combination this week!! 

P Pie (which i'm assuming stands for Pumpkin Pie), at a glance, could be perceived as a dupe for Aruba or Pan Tao from previous Sleek collections (not Life's a Peach though -This is definitely more RAWR) but the colour, to me, seems slightly deeper and less acidic than Aruba and i feel perfectly justified in having both as these palettes are PERFECT for travel. 
I haven't actually got any further than a swatch of Lantern yet. But the colour is gorgeous and all three are very well pigmented.

Here are the swatches (in the order they appear in the palette)

This was just one swipe of each shade. I didn't build them up. But i've always found Sleek blushes to be perfect for building. You can have a light dusting of colour or really go for it. You don't need a lot on your brush though due to the crazy pigmentation of the product. Next to MAC, Sleek win hands down for me in terms of blush. 

So i am now on a mission to get my paws on 'Lace'. The other variants in the range didn't really appeal to me but if you want a nosey you can find all the details HERE or just pop into your nearest Superdrug store and have a good swatch-fest. 

Have you snapped one of these up yet?? What are your favourite shade combinations?? Are you a Sleek Freak??

Wednesday 4 April 2012

Butter Me Up Baby!!!

Afternoon lovelies!!
How crap am i lately?! Been just over a week AGAIN since i've posted. So much going on i've hardly had a minute to pick up my camera or laptop! I can't believe that i have had these little beauties exactly a week and am only JUST writing the blog post!! Especially as i was so excited about them!
They are, of course, the Revlon Colourburst Lip Butters.....

(DISCLAIMER: Please don't hate me for my hairy lips in this post..... just another thing i haven't had time to deal with this week lol)

I have to say that these have been a total BALL ACHE to source. Living in the middle of nowhere like i do i didn't hold out much hope searching round all my nearest (relatively small) Boots and Superdrug. Half of them don't even carry Revlon products! I finally bit the bullet and clicked onto and got them on a 3 for 2 deal. 

These products are a nifty little hybrid between a lipstick and a lip balm. They contain mango, shea and coconut butters to provide maximum moisture as well as a sheer/medium pop of colour (this coverage seems to depend on which shades you purchase). I was very restrained and stuck with the 3 i am posting about today. To be honest i find them a little overpriced at £7.99 a piece so will probably not be tempted to buy more. I only have 3 because of the Boots offer. 

Here are the shades i picked up....

This was the first ever shade of Lip Butter i ever glanced at. As you know i am a MASSIVE fan of Slave2beauty on Instagram and always want EVERYTHING she photographs and this was one of those things. It is a gorgeous girlie pink which is a LOT more wearable than it looks, thanks to the sheer nature of the formula. I did worry that it would result in the 'corpse' effect on me, as i am quite warm skinned and this is a cool pink, but I'm really liking it and can see myself reaching for this a lot over the warmer months for day or night.

On my lips i personally find this shade quite similar to MAC Hue, but with Cremesheen kind of finish (if that makes sense to you??). It's much more opaque than Hue but not too much that it whites out the lips. I have to say that it looks a lot bluer in the bullet than it does on the lips, which i am kinda thankful for! 

Creme Brulee
As we all should know by now i am a sucker for a nude (lippy) and there was no way i wasn't going to pick this one up after i saw lip swatches. I just WANTED it! Its just a lovely creamy shade which, to me, doesn't seem to lean either warm or cool. Extremely wearable for those days where you want to wear a lippy but don't want it to LOOK like you're wearing one (if you get my drift). 

On the lips this gives off a gorgeous creamy sheen, but isn't at all 'in your face'. On paler skintones than mine (I'm an NC30) this may give more of a colour payoff but i love it for what it is. Totally natural but giving a hint of moisture and gloss. 

This is such a fun shade!! This is another one i've spotted on Instagram over the last few weeks and, being a pink freak, i just had to get it! I adore it because it is an intense, fuchsia pink, but is so much more wearable than other comparable shades due to the finish. I know i keep going on about the finish but I'm a HUGE fan of a Cremesheen finish in MAC and i find these so similar. With this particular shade it means that it is still a striking colour, but not too SHOCKING on the lips. 

This really is a beautiful colour. Everyone i have heard of who has it seems to love it. Even if you're unsure of bright pink lipsticks i'd say you should still buy it. It may change your mind! 

I'm so pleased with the colours i picked. They're perfect for what i like and i really love the formula. In terms of longevity they're not going to last as long as a regular lipstick due to the balmy nature of the product but i still managed a good 2 hours out of them before i felt like i needed to touch up. 
From what i gather, opinion changes on these lipsticks throughout the shade range. It appears that some shades are more hit/miss than others and i guess you would have to actually go instore and swatch you head off to really seperate the wheat from the chaff...

But i would totally recommend these shades. They are available for around £7.99 from and larger Boots stores. I'm unsure on Superdrug at this point in time but i'm pretty sure most Revlon stockists will have them eventually. Methinks Revlon need to get their butts in gear and get them out there a bit more!

What are your Must-Have Lip Butter shades?? Do you love the lipstick/balm combo?? 
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