The Perfect Red Lip...

Red lips just ooze glamour and add that little bit of oomph to a simple outfit. Have a read of this post to find out my favourite products and tricks to create the perfect red lip ...

What's on my iPhone?...

I saw this tag video on one of my recent YouTube catch-up sessions and thought it would transpire well into a blog post. I love seeing what apps people use on a day to day basis so here's what my iPhone 5 is loaded up with: ...

Event: #shhealthysmile at Everyman Cinema

At the beginning of the month, I was invited down to the Everyman Cinema in Leeds by the lovely team over at Simplyhealth to enjoy a good ol' giggle with my Sister...

YourTea Tiny Tea Teatox

So here we are 7 days into my Tiny Tea Teatox and I've really enjoyed it! The first thing I noticed is how much my skin has cleared up. I genuinely didn't think that this was a benefit of the tea, considering it is essentially a 'weight loss' system ...

Coral Ombre Nails

Not a perfect ombré, but these colours look so good together that I can forgive the fact that I don't have five perfectly gradiented coral tones in my nail polish collection ...

Sunday, 29 May 2011

St Moriz: A Bit of Glitz and Shimmer...

So after expressing major <3 for the St. Moriz fake tan recently, I was sent a few items to further cement my slight obsession with the company. 


For all of you who have not yet heard of St. Moriz, it is a brand which is taking the fake tanning world by storm. With its' amazing formulation, which does not streak, transfer or have that nasty fake tan smell, it rivals brand leaders such as St. Tropez and Fake Bake. The best part about this brand, aside from the fact it dries instantly? The price! With all of the products in the range having a £4.99 RRP, it's not going to break the bank and with Summer just around the corner and those beaches, bikinis and denim shorts calling us after a tight-bound winter, it's just what's needed. 


You can read my review on the St. Moriz Instant Self-Tanning Mist here.


So, on to the products I was sent:




St. Moriz’s Shimmering Bronzing Body souffle and their Shade ‘n’ Shimmer Bronzing Powder in Light, £4.99 each, can be bought from: Bodycare, Semichem, Savers, Co-op, Boyes, Watts Bros, Gordon’s Chemist ( Ireland) and Independent Pharmacies.


I must admit, these both scared me a little when I opened them, as they are VERY shimmery, but I've used them both over the course of the week and really like them both. 


First off, the bronzing powder:




Mine is in the 'Light' variation, it also comes in dark. I found mine a little too light and golden toned to use as a bronzer, but I think that with the amount of shimmer in it, you'd struggle using it as a proper bronzer anyway. Instead, I've been using it as a highlighter, such as I would a shimmer brick and those kinds of products. This looks lovely over the cheekbones and even as an eyeshadow, and it blends out to a lovely bronze gold colour, perfect for summer and it's a great sized product to throw into your handbag for touch ups throughout the day. 


Secondly, the souffle:






This is a bronze, gel-like, whipped kind of product with a tonne of gold micro-glitter in it. I know, I know, it looks scary out of the tube, but on it's not that bad I promise. It's meant to be used to add a bit of oomph to your tan. The bronze colour deposits slightly on the skin and so darkens up any pre-existing tan a little, or gives you that flush of colour if not, and the shimmer, which is more apparent in person, adds that extra bit of glamour if you're going out. This is one of those day-to-night savior products. You can throw it in your handbag if you're going out after work for example and put it on as you're getting ready and you've got perfect legs and a highlighter too boot. 

The fact that it is so shimmer can put a lot of people off, but the upside to this shimmer is that it doesn't photograph like you're a human glitter ball. Rather, it adds that sort of sun-kissed 'glow' to the skin (as you can see from the above photos). I'd rather this product didn't have the amount of glitter it does, but I really love the colour it gives and the fact that it's wash off, so you can use it to amp up the glamour on a night out and be back to your demure self the next morning. However, saying this, placing this product across the collarbones and down the centre of the shins is really flattering, drawing attention to them and in the case of legs, really slimming them down.


All in all, the bronzing powder I have used every day since receiving it and love the effect it gives my skin. The souffle however, is not an 'everyday' product by any means, nor one I'd personally use all over my body, but I enjoyed the effect it gave me on my legs when I used it, and it really will complement anyone on a night out. 


If you're a fake tan addict as it is, you'll love these two products, and the whole St. Moriz range for that fact! Definitely worth a try out if you pass a store which stocks it, as it really has been my go-to brand for pale-legged emergencies and I've managed to covert some of my St. Tropez addicted friends. 


There is a reason why this brand has become such a hit, the products are great quality with amazing results at prices which make my bank balance happy!


Much Love,
Lauran
xxx


*Disclaimer* I was sent these products to review, however I have not been paid and all of my opinions are my own and honest.

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Handbag Saviour: Figs & Rouge Rambling Rose...

It's not often that something so little and so usual will catch my eye, let alone a lip balm, but this has. I thought that it was just a prettily packaged lip balm, but looking into Figs & Rouge as a company and their other products, it's a whole lot more!


£2.99 Boots
First off, how beautiful is the packaging? I love anything pink and the vintage look is just gorgeous. Being a sucker for packaging I was sold just by looking at it. The whole range is beautiful and will be a welcome addition to my handbag. It doesn't look like a product you'd find in Boots, more like a little vintage Boutique in the middle of nowhere. They look unique, cute and fashionable, and it's just a balm. 


When I got home, I looked up Figs & Rouge. Here's a little excerpt from their website about the benefits of their balms to the skin.


"Packed with pure & organic essential oils, fatty acids, vitamin e. and a
whole host of nutrients - Figs & Rouge balms are incredibly good for skin! Rejuvenating organic Shea butters, soothing bees wax & delicious aromas combine to make our balms little wonder tins for all skin types"

It seems like these little wonder pots are a great one-for-all balm. Much like the Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream but at a fraction of the price (8 Hour Cream retails at around £25.00). The can be used to treat sore skin, tame brows, soften hands and lips, treat spots, prime face before foundation, style hair, moisturise body and face AND as a subtle perfume. For an even longer list of uses for this product check out their website here.


'Delicious aroma' is a major understatement! I have Rambling Rose, and it smells rosy and lemony and just yummy and it doesn't taste horrible either. After using it my lips felt so soft and moisturised but not greasy. This is down to the 100% Organic, Petroleum free recipe, which consists of essential oils and is not tested on animals. 

I'm really looking forward to trying more of the fragrances and especially the Peppermint one to see whether it is good for spot treatment and prevention. They also have other products too, there will definitely be something for everyone in this line. I'm going to try and use Rambling Rose for a different use everyday and see how I get on. I really hope it ends up being one of those saviour products that I can't live without. It looks promising!

What are your handbag essentials?

Much Love,
Lauran
xxx

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Eyeliners: The Bottom Eye'Line'r...

OK, bad pun, but navigating the minefield of eyeliners nowadays has become more difficult with the introduction of so many new formulas into our drugstores. So, what's the best? Gel, Cream, Liquid or Pencil? Here's my quick run down.






The products I have are:
Gel: Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Liner £7.99
Cream: E.L.F. Cream Eyeliner £3.50
Liquid: L'Oreal Super Liner Carbon Gloss £5.19
Pencil: Rimmel Exaggerate Waterproof Eye Definer £3.99


Gel liners are a pretty new introduction into the world of the drugstore. But with the continued success of Bobbi Brown Gel Liner and MAC Fluidline, the drugstores have made this product more accessible and cheaper. The Maybelline product comes with a great sized and shaped brush to apply the liner with, but if you've never used this kind of product before, it might be easier to use a more angled brush. This product is great to use on lash lines and waterlines as it DOES NOT budge... AT ALL! 


I've always been scared to try stuff like this in my waterline, but after doing so, I wouldn't go back, it's amazing and leaves a truly black line. If you're a first timer however, practice will make perfect as it takes a while to get used to the application. I hope that they bring out other colours in the future much like MAC's as a plummy purple or deep brown I'd love to try.


Top to Bottom: Maybelline, E.L.F. L'Oreal and Rimmel
So as you can see, the most 'black' of the products is the Carbon Gloss by L'Oreal and I must say, this is my favourite of the products. It is so easy to apply and I love the glossy finish. It's a great liner for those pin-up style looks and when you want your eyes to be the main focus of your make up. The point of the applicator is not as fine as I'd like, but I can work with it and can always use a fine eyeliner brush if I need to be really precise. 


If you're a die hard pencil fan, the Rimmel one is great and with it being waterproof it's a great handbag essential as it can be used for all of your eye lining needs. It is a great build-able black and what is good about this range is that it comes in every colour you could ever want. At only £3.99 it's a great product to just try out and see if it's for you. The only downside? It's automatic which means after the initial point has worn out, it is more difficult to get precise lines. 


The final product is the E.L.F. Cream Liner and although I love this brand, I am not overly impressed with this product in comparison to the others. Whilst it is really easy to apply and the angled brush that comes with it is perfect for application, it does smudge and move down the face. I've tried it with a primer too and this did prolong its wear. I now prefer to use this product as a base for dark make up looks and its great for doing a black/grey smokey eye as you can literally just use this product and it's done with. 


All in all, my favourite application method is still liquid as it's so easy to apply, however once I get the hang of it, I think I'll be converted to gels. 


What are your favourite eye liners at the moment?


Much Love,
Lauran
xxx

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Hairspiration: Katy Perry for GHD 'Sleeping Beauty'...

"Sleeping Beauty woke up in the boho seventies, when parties where wild but hair was relaxed."


I saw this beautiful Ad with Katy Perry in it today whilst on my lunch break from work and absolutely fell in love with her hair. There are a series of these Ad's and she looks amazing in all of them! This is a great festival chic look and is so easy to re-create.
  1. Part your hair into a very clean centre part,
  2. Take about 1-2 inches of hair from under your top layer of hair at one side of your head,
  3. Split this into 3 sections and braid, pulling your it to the other side of your head so it lays flat,
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3,
  5. Secure with bobby pins,
  6. Loosely curl the rest of your hair with GHD's or a curling iron, whichever you have, and lightly brush out,
  7. Add a finishing spray for shine and hairspray for hold.
This style will look gorgeous with maxi-dresses and won't be out of place at the festivals this summer. Want to shake it up a bit? Add a floral garland headband or hair clip to bring it right into summer and spice up a simple short/t-shirt combo outfit.


Check out GHD's step-by-step guide and video to this look here.

Much Love,
Lauran
xxx

Friday, 20 May 2011

New Discoveries: Collection 2000 Big Fake Mascara and Lasting Perfection Concealer...

I've been hearing amazing things about Collection 2000 products recently and decided to give them a try. Their prices are amazing and it seems that their products are too.


So, I decided to try out the Big Fake False Lash Effect Mascara and the Lasting Perfection Ultimate Wear Concealer as I had heard great things about them within the beauty community and a girl can never have too many concealers and mascaras right?


Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection Ultimate Wear Concealer
£4.19 Boots
Starting off with the concealer. I have mine in Number 1: Fair as I am quite fair skinned and I also like to add a bit of light under my eyes with concealer. The consistency is really creamy and thick, but not in a bad way; In the good way that it will literally conceal ANYTHING in its path! I have been getting a lot of stress related blemishes recently and this product has been a life saver as it makes them barely noticeable.  




I have used it both under and over foundation and it works the same both ways, however it tends to crease less under the eyes when used under foundation. It blends really nicely and I don't know about the 16 Hour claim but it certainly stays put all day. All in all, it is one of the best 'drugstore' concealers I have ever tried and I am now fully converted from my Rimmel Hide The Blemish Concealer, controversial I know, but honestly try it and you'll see the difference and at just £4.19 it's a steal.


Collection 2000 Big Fake Mascara
£4.99 Boots
The second is the Big Fake False Lash Effect Mascara. I am a lover of the Maybelline Falsies and so finding a cheaper alternative is always good. The packaging is lovely, and it definitely does not look 'cheap' in the way some low-end brands can do, but at £4.99 it doesn't break the bank. Happy Days!




The formulation of this mascara is nowhere near as wet as the Maybelline one, which is a god send. I hate having to wait for mascaras to effectively dry out before they're usable, but I'd say the only downside is the size of the brush itself. It is great to add the length and volume for the 'False Lash Effect' but near on impossible not to make a mess with it. I can overcome this though as the effect it gives is beautiful and it stays put without flaking too. 


Saying I'm impressed with Collection 2000 would be an understatement. I'm definitely going to try more of their products.


Do you have any beauty steals from low-end brands? What do you think of Collection 2000?
Hope you've all had a great day!


Much Love,
Lauran
xxx

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Beauty Blender Dupe: Cosmopolitan Blend Perfection Sponge...

Right so you know that everyone and their best friend is raving about the BeautyBlender Sponge and how it can make foundation application so much easier and give a more flawless finish than fingers or brushes ever could? Well with its' hefty £14.50 price tag, I wasn't going to shell out for one too quickly but I have found this rather interesting dupe courtesy of Cosmopolitan. 




Cosmopolitan beauty tools can be purchased in larger Superdrug stores and this was only about £5.00 (I'm really sorry I can't remember the price as I lost the receipt and for some reason it doesn't come up on their website). Their Blend Perfection Sponge claims to result in a flawless finish, and do you know what? I completely agree! 



I haven't ever used the BeautyBlender so I can't compare quality etc, but for the price I paid for this one, I think it is amazing and that's not me just saying its good for the price, it's good all round. 

All I do to use is dampen the sponge in water, pump some foundation on the back of my hand, bounce the base of the sponge into it, then gently stipple or bounce the sponge across my skin. I feel like I use a lot more foundation when I use this product however, but I don't mind. I get great coverage and my skin looks really flawless, definitely that 'airbrush' effect. I use the tapered end to go around awkward areas such as around the nose, mouth and eyes and having only ever used fingers or brushes for foundation application, the sponge was a welcome change and produced great results. 

Also, if you have dry or blemish prone skin, this kind of application will be great for you. The water in the sponge will hydrate your skin and the gentle stippling motion will press the foundation onto your skin rather than rub it about which can cause dry skin to flake and make blemishes more visible. It's hot pink as well so that's always a selling point in my eyes. Be sure to cleanse it however, as a build up of product, especially on something you'll be using on your skin is never good. 

If you pop into a Superdrug anytime soon and are thinking about getting the BeautyBlender, try this product first, you'll love it!

Hope you're having a great evening and aren't stressing too much if you still have exams or assignments to do.

Much Love,
Lauran
xxx