Wednesday, 28 August 2013

High Street Chubby Stick Dupes

This year has seen the realise of the faux chubby stick from a fair few different high street brands, as well as some higher end brands giving it a go too. A summer favourite, these are fuss free lip products which keeps your lips hydrated and add a pop of colour at the same time. Colder months usually welcome bolder and darker lip products, but before you banish them to the depths of your collection just yet, think again. On the A/W catwalks of the likes of Prada, autumnal colours are being used, like berries and deep reds, but instead of a bold, precise look, it's more of a stained look, which is where these summer hits can come in handy. I want to share with you some of the glossy stain balms I own from a range of brands and let you know what I think!!

L-R: Revlon, Bourjois, Jelly Pong Pong, Soap & Glory, LAQA&Co and

T-B: Revlon, Bourjois, Jelly Pong Pong, Soap & Glory, LAQA&Co and

The first dupe that I got, and as you can see all the writing has worn off, so that was a while ago. This product smells heavily of mint, which maybe would put some people off, but hey, if you've left your gum at home, this product doubles up for you!! This has fairly good colour pay off and wears off nice and evenly. I quite like the shade, but if you feel it's too dark for you, they have 7 colours in the range including nudes, brights and darks to suit a wide range of bases.

The newest edition to the faux chubby family. This is one that boasts the most quality, claiming to be waterproof, wear for 10 hours and an SPF of 15. I don't think it is waterproof or wears for 10 hours, but I do think it wears well, and for a fair amount of time too. The product is very pigmented and for the price I think it's great! At the moment they are only 4 shades available but with the popularity of the product I think they shall be adding some to the collection soon (fingers crossed!)

I received this dupe months ago in a beauty box, and is on the sheerer side of things. No matter how much you build this product up, you're not going to get the bright pink colour like the bullet of this product. I definitely think this is more of a tinted lip balm in comparison with the other dupes I own, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. I tend to keep this in my coat pocket and if I feel I want to add a little something, I can!

This out of all the products is the one I use the most. I don't know whether it's because of the colour, the formula or a mixture of the two. This is an ideal 'your lips but more' colour, it wears fantastically, smells delicious and just makes your lips look amazing!! This guy gets a massive thumbs up from me, I definitely need to invest in the 4 other shades available!!

Naturally I have quite dark lips, which never really work out with light, babyish pink colours, which unfortunately is what this tone is. It makes my teeth look kinda yellow and I find the colour isn't as easily evenly distributed over my lips unlike the others which is a bit annoying (a bit of finger smudging and you are good to go), again I don't know whether this is because of the colour on my lips or the formula itself. There's a total of 5 colours to choose from, which are all darker than this which may be better suited to me.

Last but not least, another beauty box find, this is the only one which doesn't follow the others with screw-up packaging, and despite the look of it, you need a sharpener. This shade has a tiny bit of glitter in it, and is a lot more pinky than what the bullet of the product might suggest. Don't get me wrong, I do like this dupe, but with other even cheaper alternatives on the market, which are the same, if not better, I think I would rather repurchase them or the Clinique original, which is cheaper!!

If I were to recommend one, I think it would be the Soap & Glory dupe, although I haven't tried a brightly coloured one as of yet nor have I tried the original, Clinique Chubby Stick, so I may have to invest in one out those too. I think these are great for days when you really can't be bothered with it all, and just want something quick and easy!

Do you own any of these?
Which one is your favourite?

Let us know!!

Monday, 26 August 2013

MAC Make-Up Wipes

As much as I try to stick to a good night time skin care routine, some nights you just need your make-up to be off as soon as possible with no hassle, and that is usually where the old faithful make-up wipe comes in. There are so many brands out there doing their own kind of wipe, all boasting different qualities. The majority of drug-store make-up wipes I have come across do the job you need them to, but I also find that they leave your skin feeling dry and damaged, rip out your eyelashes and always dry out in the packet!

Every time I visit my local MAC counter, the MUA will always have one of these babies to hand, whether it is for my face, lips or to merely wipe swatches from the back of my hand and I have always really noticed how moist they are. I realise how silly that sounds, but I find your average wipe dries out before you finish removing all of your make-up, MAC’s make-up wipes do not, they are tough on removing make-up and yet still super gentle on your skin, so no stingy eyes! I don’t feel that my skin is dry after using these, as they are infused with Vitamin E, but I still feel I need to moisturise, because after all it is still just a wet wipe. These make-up wipes are a good size as well, one wipe always does the job, in comparison to some brands with TINY wipes!  I love the scent of these wipes, fresh and non-chemically and I am not sure if I am the only person who thinks this, but they smell like “being at a MAC counter”…

I love that these wipes actually have a hard plastic re-sealable lid to keep the product fresh! This is an ideal product for lighter make-up days, drunken evenings or those lazy days where taking your make-up off is the biggest chore in the world, so whilst you are skipping a thorough cleanse, tone and moisturise, your face isn’t being ripped to shreds!

My only gripe is the ridiculous price of these wipes, at a whopping £19.50 for 100 sheets (I got these discounted at IMATS, thank god!) I think you have to swear by these to be able to justify a repurchase! Overall, a good product, but I think the same amount of money could go towards a high end make-up remover which would be a lot better for your skin!

How do you remove your make-up?

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Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Viva La Juicy Noir Review

As I mentioned in last week's post, I had indeed already purchased the full size perfume that was sent to me in my Glossybox. I rarely invest a good amount of money into perfumes (I'm quite a fan of both CK One and CK IN2U both of which can be found around the £20 mark) but I thought as a birthday treat to myself I would spend a good amount of money on a more high end perfume. I tend to lean towards either fresh or sweet scents, fresh for the day and sweeter for the evening, but I wanted to get something that would work well for both, and as this was a new release a lot of incentives were being added in with purchasing Viva la Juicy Noir (I managed to snap this up whilst Boots were offering 10 pounds worth of points.) Others in the shortlist were Naughty Alice by Vivienne Westwood and YSL's Manifesto, I found all of these scents something I feel I could wear at whatever time, and similarly sweet.

A 50ml size retails at £47.00

What the bottle looks like!

I've never owned the original Viva la Juicy (nor the La Fleur blend within the VLJ range) but have known those that have, and they do smell similar, but different enough that it justifies having two perfumes. Both perfumes contain berry, honeysuckle and sandalwood aromas. However Viva la Juicy contains more floral notes of jasmine and gardenia whereas Noir goes down a more gourmand route. Now, I could sit here and list the scents within both, but truth be told I can't pick out all of these things in smelling either perfumes, but maybe a more trained nose could. Either way, I really do like this scent, and it lingers on the skin and wears well it's a winner for me!

The bottle although never the most important part about a fragrance, is something to mention as everybody loves a nice bit of packaging and this is that too. The bottle looks similar to the mother fragrance but the bottle itself is pink and opaque (I'm sure this will annoy me towards the end of the bottle when I can't see how much is left) but this does look nice and girly on any dresser whilst having a bit of attitude with a black bow and large crystal lid, I like Juicy Couture as a brand and own a few pieces of their jewellery and this bottle very much fits in with the rest of this brand, so if you like Juicy usually, you'll like this too.

All in all I obviously like this fragrance, I trawled the perfume section and had my nose burning from smelling every fragrance, which hey, when you're in an airport you know you do too, but after umming and ahhing this is the one I was happy to spend the money on.

Have you smelt this fragrance?
Own any other Juicy perfumes?

Let us know down in the comments!!

Saturday, 17 August 2013

Bobbi Brown Long Wear Gel Eyeliner

I have always heard good things about Bobbi Brown, but especially their Long Wear Gel Liner, so when I had the chance to snap this up at IMATS, I did! This product has been given various awards including Best Liquid/Gel Eye Liner in the InStyle Best Beauty Buys 2013.

Bobbi Brown do try and offer you their own liner brush for application, but I turned down that offer and stuck with my trusty Real Techniques Fine Liner Brush. The packaging is pretty average, a standard glass pot with a screw top lid.

Right, so here is my make-up confession... I am absolutely terrible at applying liquid liner! I don't know what's wrong with me, but I just end up with two big panda eyes so therefore I will always stick to a gel! I feel you get a lot more control with a gel and the consistency is very easy to work with. The only downfall to this perfect consistency, is that you can never seem to get that same bold pigmentation as you can with a liquid liner. In comparison to other drug-store gel liners, the pigmentation of Bobbi Brown's is a lot better, although this does dull down after about 7 hours + wear time.

This liner is creamy and smooth meaning it simply glides on without any tugging to the eyelid. Bobbi Brown advise that you should wipe excess off the brush before applying, I have never done this and have had no problems with messy or bad application.

My favourite aspect of this liner, is that it isn't a thick product that builds up on the brush, which also means you can layer it up on your eyelid depending on how bold you want your look. Sometimes I even find myself outlining the shape I want first, and then going over it again with heavier application, a really easy product to use!

This liner does last a full day, but as previously mentioned does dull down, and you may feel you want to top it up to get your bold, black line back. I have experienced some transfer onto the top of my eyelid, but bear in mind I do get quite oily eyelids and this can be easily prevented with a primer or by setting the liner with some eye shadow.

This product is definitely going to remain in my make-up bag and I can see myself repurchasing. I think this would be ideal for a beginner as it is really easy to play around with!

Are you a gel or liquid fan?

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Wednesday, 14 August 2013

My August Beauty Boxes

Well, it's that time of month again, beauty boxes are being delivered left and right and I thought I'd share the contents of both my Glossybox and my Birchbox and what I think of it all!! Both boxes have a theme this month, Glossybox's is 'High Flyers' and Birchbox teamed up with magazine InStyle.

Glossybox's monthly subscription is £12.95 including P+P

BirchBox's monthly subscription also comes in at £12.95 including P+P

So, Glossybox's theme this month is 'High-flyers' which is very appropriate for the time of year, but also a very similar theme to BirchBox last month. Either way, these products are supposed to help you whilst up in the air or away on your travels. The places the companies featured are also listed, although I have two products from the USA, so it makes me feel less like they scoured the earth looking for the best products suited for the cabin and for the foreign climes, which I think was the idea. Anyway - onto the products!!

The contents of my Glossybox!!
Juicy Couture's 'Viva La Juicy Noir' £47.00 for 50ml
Receiving this product is a little annoying as I already own the full size, but then again I guess I'd rather get a perfume sample of a perfume I like so much I've already bought it than one I know I'd never wear! Obviously I love the smell of this, it's a great perfume for both day and night, it's definitely on the sweeter side of perfumes - expect a full review from me in the coming weeks!

Emite Eyelasher Curlers £20
I really like when beauty boxes include products which will last longer than a sample, like brushes, mirrors and in this case eyelash curlers. I do own a pair or two of these, but I always forget I have them and some people swear by the transformation they make to the appearance of your eyes so I think this is a great chance for me to give them a whirl!!

Philosophy's Purity Made Simple 3-in-1 Cleanser £17.50 for 240ml
Philosophy is a brand I've always wanted to try out but have always been put off by the price of their products. I haven't actually tried this out yet but I do like the idea of a one stop shop for taking all your make up off and getting rid of the dirt and grime of the day. I think a product like this would be ideal for the plane or whilst you're away as you don't want to be taking loads of lotions and potions and all the recycled air within a plane cabin can clog your skin up in no time! Glossybox also have a subscriber's offer with this product, you can get five pounds of a full size at a Debenhams counter if you take along with you the voucher included, score!

Jelly Pong Pong's 2-in-1 Shadow/Liner in Plum £10.50
Jelly Pong Pong is a brand which frequents both in Glossy and Birch, so through both my subscriptions I've gotten to know the brand quite well, although I haven't seen it in any shops. This isn't necessarily a colour I would pick out for myself, although it does work well as both a liner and a shadow, as it blends out really easily, and works great as either product.

Oceane's Make-up Remover Pen Not Available in the UK

Although I haven't tried this specific brand of make-up remover pen, I've tried others and can only assume the same faults come with this brands' version too. I love the idea of these, it easily fits in your make-up bag, and if that cat eye of yours goes a bit funny, you can sort it out no probs with the aid of this little beauty. The idea of it is great, but after one use of removing that carbon black eyeliner of bright red lipstick, you can't use it again, or you could try, and leave yourself with questionable smears all over your face. I think this is something I'll save for more special occasions, or when space is truly at a premium, and stick to a cotton bud and my trusty Bioderma until then. 


Onto BirchBox and what came in it this month. As I mentioned, Birch have teamed up with InStyle magazine and offer a reduced subscription to all BirchBox subcribers, which I think is a nice little perk if you're a fan of the magazine! It also came with a lifestyle extra in the form of a wee pack of flavoured popcorn (mine was a spicy tomato flavour, which I enjoyed very much!) but my problem is in the excitemnt of opening my boxes I ate them without thinking you guys might want to see them!! Whoops!! All full size products from this box can be purchased full size on their online shop

What I received in my BirchBox!! This also came with a pack of popcorn
which I devoured before I could photograph it - whoops!!

Bluemandarines' SkinLife Energetic Cellular Cream Full Size £35.00
This Moisturiser is supposed to bright up skin and refresh your skin, and claims to do an all manner of other skin voodoo with protecting stem cells amongst other things. This product has a rather large price tag attached to it, but I'll have to give this product a serious whirl before investing in it.

Motibel.lo's Gold Oil Essence Full Size £22.50

Oils, oils, oils, the oil is here to stay, whether that be an all-purpose, a body, or in the case of this, a hair oil. I personally like hair oils, the ones I've tried, when used sparingly have made a real difference to the texture and the resilience of my hair, and hopefully this one will do the same.

Gerda Spillmann's Hydro Pearls Full Size £30.00

Gerda Spillmann is another brand I've learnt of through the beauty box world, and I suppose I could take it or leave it really. I've found none of their products particularly groundbreaking, especially for the price attached to them, and I feel this primer is the same, I think it's nothing special, and definitely not £30 special.

LAQA & Co. Lip Pencil in Wolfman Full Size £14.00

LAQA & Co are a brand I've always browsed over but never taken the plunge and bought anything from them. The colour I received is a bit light for me as I have quite dark lips, but I'm going to make it work, both the texture and pigmentation are nice!!

Molton Brown's Ylang Ylang Body Wash Full Size £18.00 
A very nice body wash, very decadent, and it smells very nice too, although I could never justify spending almost £20 on a shower gel.

BirchBox Gel Mask £10.00
Birchbox every now and again include one of their own products, and this month it is a gel mask. I quite like this extra as everyone will be able to use it and all you need is a fridge! Nice and cooling and great for a pamper night in.

So! That's what I got and what I thought. I got some really nice products in these boxes, I'm particularly chuffed with the eyelash curlers! I'd love to know which box/products you like, if you're subbed to either box or got different things to me!! Let me know down in the comments!!

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Bumble and Bumble Surf Foam Wash Shampoo and Creme Rinse Conditioner

‘Beach hair’ seems to be a big beauty topic during the summer months and probably one of my favourite, although I don’t seem to be able to ever get it unless I have literally just been swimming in the sea…sigh. Bumble and Bumble already have a Surf Spray on the market that is hugely popular and has been for years, then earlier this year they whipped up this duo, to make their surf collection a trio! All the ‘surf’ products smell lovely and fresh and do actually remind me of being on holiday, not the best thought in the 6:30am shower before work! This duo promises “buoyant body” and “sea breezy texture” which I think is enough to suck anybody in!

Both are made with a blend of sea salt, minerals and sea botanicals. The foam wash shampoo lathers up just fine in cleaner hair, but for squeaky clean results from dirtier hair, I would suggest using a normal shampoo first and then using this one. I use the creme rinse conditioner all over, rather than just focusing on the ends and it doesn't leave the hair feeling limp or weighed down.  Bumble and Bumble have got the balance of nourishing and texturising just right whilst still being lightweight! For you girls with badly damaged hair from colouring or heat, I am not sure that you will get the desired effect (please let me know if you have damaged hair and have tried this duo!). These do not work as an everyday shampoo and conditioner and you can start to see and feel build-up of the product on your scalp, I save these for the days when I specifically want this look! I leave my hair to dry naturally after washing my hair and then control the final look with some sea salt spray and a bit of back combing!

I tested out the 60ml sized bottles from the limited edition surf set but these products are usually 250ml full size, at a hefty £18.50 for the shampoo and £20.00 for the conditioner. I could see them lasting a long time, but this would be due to me not using the product on a regular basis, rather than the product going a long way. Overall, I think I would repurchase the conditioner, although the shampoo is good, I think the conditioner does a perfect job on its own!

Are you a Bumble and bumble fan?
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Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Neutrogena Visibly Clear Pink Grapefruit Facial Wash Review

With a hot and sticky August ahead of us, I thought I'd review a product which aims to keep us fresh and clean, the humble face wash. This one in particular either has had a range of reviews, so I thought I'd share my experience!!

A 200ml bottle retails for £3.29

Neutrogena is a well known, easy to get hold of, drugstore brand. It's also super cheap, and if you're a frequent visitor to Boots, it usually has some sort of offer on to make it extremely affordable. I've been experimenting with more high end skin brands recently but thought that I should give a drugstore brand a whirl. My skin isn't particularly sensitive to anything, and I also have oily/combination, and blemish prone skin, which made this particular wash stand out to me. I liked the idea of a pump dispenser, as it stays nice and sanitary and you get a nice amount in one to two pumps. This product has a gel like consistency and when work into a damp face makes a nice lather, but not too much that you're overwhelmed by bubbles. It's quick, it's simple and easy to wash off. The grapefruit scent is nice, but doesn't linger at all, which I like. It leaves your face feeling cleansed, a little firmer yet still quite soft, this is definitely gentle enough to be used twice a day like advised (I have even used it three times, and my skin hasn't been dried out by it.) Is my skin completely blemish free? No, I still get a few troublesome spots now and again, but I do think using this on a daily basis, has helped. Taking the time (which is all of five minutes) of washing my face with a wash when I clean my teeth both morning and night has improved my complexion, and I think using a wash designed to tackle the issues I have with my skin. 

I would recommend you trying it out this wash, it is a steal at £3.29 (or even less if there is an offer on!) and think it would help out those tackling blemishes and oily skin. This isn't an absolute miracle worker, I think if you suffer from things like acne or rosacea you'll need something a bit more powerful, but for those with average teenage skin worries, I think this is a great place to start!

Do you have a favourite face wash?
Have you tried anything from Neutrogena?
If so what do you think?!

Let us know in the comments!!

Saturday, 3 August 2013

Benefit: Fake Up Crease-Control Hydrating Concealer

Fake Up is one of Benefit's newer products on the market and is advertised as a hydrating concealer that won't crease or settle into fine lines. "It will never work!" were my initial thoughts on this product, but as the Queen of oily-combination skin with my under-eye concealer creasing from the moment I apply it, I knew it couldn't hurt to try it!

This product comes in a very pretty twist up tube, which essentially means you don't really need a brush for this product. This concealer is teamed with a silky smooth Vitamin E and Apple Seed Extract balm which makes the general product feel quite slippy, but do not be put off by that! Where you would normally buff a concealer into the skin, this one is completely different, after application I rub it in with my fingers and let it sink in for a few seconds. As I mentioned before, my concealer always creases, literally from the moment I apply it, but with Fake Up there are no signs of creasing until approximately the 8 hour mark, which I think is amazing!

This product only comes in 3 colours, but I think each colour would suit a range of skin tones as some people like to go darker or lighter depending on what look they want from their concealer. I picked up shade 02 Medium which I think is a pretty good match for me. This concealer gives a sheer coverage which will do nothing to help other blemishes, but as a under-eye concealer this works absolute wonders!

As always with any Benefit product, this concealer comes with a high price tag at £18.50, but I really think if like me you struggle with creasing concealer you NEED to try this out!

Have you tried Fake Up or do you have another concealer you swear by?
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