Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman Core Collection Review

One of the beauty products high up on my Christmas list was the core collection from Real Techniques. In the past eighteen months I have discovered and fallen in love with the Pixiwoo ladies, and have been very intrigued to try out Sam's brushes. Since gaining a real interest in make-up I've always focused on eyes and lips and I don't wear foundation so never really thought about investing in a good set of brushes for my face until now. As a vegetarian, I was glad to hear of a collection of brushes that has animal ethics as a main part of their ethos, the brush hairs are synthetic but are very soft and feel fabulous on your skin.

Front to back: Buffing brush, contour brush, pointed foundation brush and detailer brush

Brushes in the complimentary 2-in-1 case and stand. Left to Right: pointed foundation brush, contour brush, detailer brush and buffing brush

The foundation brush is a brush that I don't think I'll use, as I've mentioned I don't wear foundation so it's primary use is lost on me, I did play about applying concealer with it and it did the job. (I also showed the brush to Emma who does use foundation and she said it looked a little on the small side for her liking, but as she didn't actually apply her base with it, she can't give a proper verdict.)


After priming my skin applying concealer (not rubbing in) on problem areas, blemishes and dark circles (I used a mixture of Collection 2000 lasting perfection concealer and Maybelline dream lumitouch highlighting concealer) I used the buffing brush to buff it all into the skin. I liked the even finish the brush gave and it really worked the product into the skin. I still had areas such as my dreaded under-eye circles and a few spots which needed extra coverage so I then turned to the detailer brush.


Being a teenager (just) I am still prone to spots, so the detailer brush comes in handy to cover up those imperfections that need extra help hiding. I usually cover spots up using my hands but in the grand scheme of things that isn't the best idea because oily hands over spots won't help them disappear!! I found the detailer helpful with covering up spots (teamed with Collection 2000), although I still found a part of redness did remain (keep in mind this is before I powdered the skin). I found that with covering up my dark circles (using Maybelline) the brush didn't help as much with working the product into the skin and I found it moved around a lot and I ended up using my finger to pat the rest of the product into my skin. Overall I was happy with the way the brush helped work to product into the skin and cover up what needed covering!


After powdering the skin (using MAC studio fix powder) I took to contouring the face. Using the contour brush to apply my bronzer (I used sleek's face form palette) I liked that the brush creates a precise enough line to create a shadow under your cheekbone but not too precise that it looks unnatural.  The brush also makes it easy to blend out the product so adding a blush and/or highlighter is no issue and you can easily use the brush for all of them.


I applied the blush that came in the sleek palette which compliments the bronzer. I prefer a subtle effect of blusher and bronzer so I reached for the buffing brush and used it as a kabuki brush (although Real Techniques make one of those too) to soften the line between both products.

The finished look! I also finished the rest of my make-up.

Overall I would highly recommend the core collection. Before this set the only brushes I owned for my base were blusher brushes and I have noticed a difference in the finish and staying power of my base, particularly the coverage over my blemishes which is fantastic! I'm also fairly new to contouring and the contour brush is a great one for newbies trying to add dimension to their faces. My personal favourite is the buffing brush, it truly does what it says on the tin and really buffing the product into the skin, giving you a great, even base. I would recommend this set, it is affordable at £21.99 for the whole set (that's £6.50 a brush!) but do not fret, quality has not been compromised! I am eager to try the starter set created for eyes and the finishing brushes in the range, I truly see the brushes by Real Techniques as a bargain, if you looked after these beauties and washed them regularly, I can't see why they couldn't last you a long time! A massive thumbs up from me!

Alice
x

Saturday, 19 January 2013

MUA Pro-Brow Ultimate Eyebrow Kit



MUA PRO-BROW ULTIMATE EYEBROW KIT: £3.50
These days everyone is in love with a full & thick brow, the biggest problem is finding an affordable product which will work for your look. Since the rise of the HD Brows palette it is obvious that every well known beauty brand is trying to follow the success, and MUA are no different! I actually picked  this product up last year to see how it would compare to other products I have tried, as this one was recently recommended on This Morning it has become a lot more popular and seems to be flying off the shelves!

This product includes 2 brow colours: brown and blonde, a highlighting shade and a fixing gel along with an applicator brush and mini tweezers. Luckily, the brown matches my brow colour perfectly, but this may cause problems for people with different skin tones or hair colours. The highlighting shade works well and a quick sweep under the brows leaves them looking lifted. The brush is your standard angled brow brush, but the hairs are very coarse making application harder - I have definitely seen myself reaching for an alternative brush to apply this product. The fixing gel is not my favourite aspect of the product, although it does its job, the applicator and palette do not suit it, I think MUA should maybe look at bringing out a separate fixing gel product, maybe in a pen or mascara wand format? 

You are definitely getting your money's worth with this product and I believe this is an excellent stepping stone for anyone unsure on eyebrow products!


Wednesday, 9 January 2013

MAC Lipstick Review: Morange

I was a very lucky girl this Christmas in regards to beauty products, and one that I received was Morange by MAC!! This is my first lipstick from the amplified range by MAC so I was really intrigued to see whether the pigmentation in the bullet is what you got on your lips!! I was happy with the results (as I usually am with MAC lippies) and the colour stays, even without a lip liner, I have yet to invest in an orange/coral one. It wears better than you might think for a bright orange, it just adds that pop to your look. I think having this lipstick, or any other bright colour which MAC carry, in your collection is a good idea, I think it'd suit a range of skin tones, from my pasty face to someone much darker, I think it would be perfect to jazz up a day-to-night look, just a pop of this on your lips, a fresh lick of mascara, and BAM you're ready to party the night away!! As it is so vibrant, I don't know whether it would be the first lipstick to add to your collection if you're shy about bright colours, because this one is bright, really bright, but if you're feeling fierce and fearless then this will honestly work wonders for you. I've yet to purchase a MAC lipstick I've disliked, and Morange is no exception!!






In your local department store or online this will fetch for £14.00, a wee investment for those looking for some show-stopping lips.

Alice!

Monday, 7 January 2013

MAC Viva Glam: Ricky Martin and Nicki Minaj

So everyone loves a good Christmas gift set & MAC's Holiday Viva Glam Collection is no exception!
To start with the packaging is absolutely adorable and is perfect for a small make-up bag or small day-to-day purse, then, included in this gift set is the Viva Glam Nicki Minaj Lipstick and the Viva Glam Ricky Martin Lip Conditioner.

I was a bit scared by how bright this lipstick looked in the bullet, but on the lips it is a very wearable yellow toned pink. The longevity of this lipstick is really good and after eating I still had a good colour on my lips, although, I think this is due to the somewhat dryer texture of the lipstick, described as "Satin Finish" this lipstick will stick to dryer lips, but this is where the Ricky Martin Lip Conditioner comes in, right?

In a perfect sized tube this conditioner has a thicker consistency than your average gloss, and you only need a tiny amount to cover the lips. Worn on its own this has the look of a clear lip gloss and the effect of a lip balm, which I think is needed through the winter months! Although I have not tried this conditioner under any other lipstick, this Viva Glam Duo work really well together as the conditioner really loosens up the lipstick giving it a more creamy finish.

I absolutely love this set and I think I feel even better knowing that 100% of the RRP goes towards the MAC Aids Fund, which is definitely a justified reason for adding these two products to your collection!