Friday, 28 September 2012

Topshop Beguiled

Hey Dolls :)

With the transition of seasons, comes a transition in my make up.  Last Autumn I favoured dark eyes , but for me, this autumn brings with it minimal eye make up and dark, berry stained lips.  I seem to be drawn to dark, wine shades and my favourite I have tried so far is Topshop's Beguiled.

Beguiled is a beautiful, wine-red shade which, whilst looking rather scary in the bullet, is actually a lot sheerer than I first expected.  It can be applied lightly to create a beautiful berry stain or applied more liberally and built up with a lip brush for a perfect, dark autumn/winter red lip. 

The formula of Beguiled is lovely.  On the website Topshop describe it as a satin matte finish which makes it a lot more wearable than if it was completely matte.  The wear on Beguiled is excellent, though you do have to fully commit to wearing it as it won't budge! I was a little worried about bleeding or feathering but I've had no problems, however as it is a darker colour a little lip prep is needed to avoid any settling in imperfections.

What make up trends will you be embracing this autumn/winter?

Love Nic

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Origins and Breast Cancer Awareness

Hey Dolls :)

In October, Origins are launching a limited edition pink themed duo of two of their most loved products, 'Make a Difference' and 'Peace of Mind', in support of Breast Cancer Awareness month.

The Duo contains miniature versions of their hand cream, 'Make a Difference' and their 'Peace of Mind'  on the spot relief in limited edition pink packaging, both of which are fitted onto a pink metal clip (I've attached mine to my work I.D badge).  'Make a Difference' is a beautiful hand cream that leaves my hands extremely moisturised and soft without leaving a greasy residue.  It has quite a strong, herbal scent - if you've used Origins products before you will be familiar with the herbal-y scent of their products. Once I have finished this miniature tube, I definitely will purchase the full size version!

'Peace of Mind' has become a cult product for Origins since it's release.  It's an 'on the spot treatment' that contains peppermint, basil and eucalyptus essential oils that are designed to alleviate the build of tension and stress.  I massage a little onto my ear lobes and temples and within a couple of minutes I feel clear headed, awake and much calmer.  I let a co-worker try a little when she felt a headache starting and it disappeared without the need of pain killers! I've already bought Peace of Mind for two of my friends who are pregnant and they have both said that it's helped them slog their way through the grogginess and stress of their first trimester! If you suffer from anxiety or panic attacks I can't recommend 'Peace of Mind' enough as it really helps to clear your head and centre your thoughts! My colleagues and I have become completely addicted to it and use it daily when feeling the strain of staring at a computer screen all day!

The duo is priced at £10 and for each duo sold, Origins will donate £2 to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation.  They are available throughout October at all Origins counters nationwide, I'm definitely going to pick up a few - they will make perfect Christmas gifts!

Love Nicola

Sunday, 23 September 2012

Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in 001 Honey

Hey Dolls,

I had put off buying any of Revlon's kissable balm stains as I had previously tried the original Just Bitten stains and absolutely hated the formula.  However, on a casual mooch around Boots on my lunch break, I decided to swatch a few and fell in love with Honey.

Honey is a lovely dusty rose shade that applies smoothly onto my lips, initially leaving a slight glossy finish before settling into a more matte, stain finish.  Reading other reviews of this stain shows that it seems to look completely different on different people. On me for instance, Honey's brown/mauve tones  predominantly show through, where as on others it translates as variations of pink, mauve and brown (Have a look through google images to see what I mean!)

It has a slightly minty smell however this disappears quickly when applied and the formula is quite moisturising. I love the packaging of the balm stains, while they look like a pencil, the packaging is actually plastic and twists at the bottom to dispense more product, no need for messy sharpeners!

Have you tried any of the Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stains? Which are your favourite shades?

Love Nicola

Saturday, 22 September 2012

Another Origins Rave

Hey Dolls,

I don't know if I've ever mentioned my love for Origins products (!) and I have recently added another four products that quite rightly deserve rave status on Magic's in the Make Up.

Starting Over Moisturiser and Eye Cream

The Origins Starting Over range is an 'age-erasing' range that uses mimosa tree bark, argan leaf and green algae to help rebuild natural collagen, leaving the appearance of plumper, more radiant skin.  However, the main reason I chose this range is their inclusion of a complex that helps combat dull and uneven skin tones, my biggest skin worry.   

I chose the oil free version of the moisturiser, but you can get the original version if you have a drier skin type.  Its a very lightweight formula that sinks into the skin quickly, though it does tend to leave a slight residue on the skin, making it more suitable to use at night.  When I wake in the morning my skin feels moisturised and extremely smooth. Combined with a more rigorous exfoliating routine, I have found that my skin tone does seem more even - my acne scarring has seen a vast improvement and I feel my skin looks brighter and more 'awake'.

The eye cream is much firmer in formulation and you need the smallest amount of product to cover both eyes.  It sinks into my skin quickly without leaving an oily residue, meaning I can use it both morning and night. In the morning, the cream's light enough that it leaves a smooth base for under eye concealer application.  Reading reviews of Starting Over on, people with more mature skin reported that it really helped with the 'crepey' appearance of their eyelids, with Origins claiming that in clinical tests, 85% of women reported a noticeable difference both in their fine lines and wrinkles and their eye lids.  For me, as a 24 year old, I'm hoping that using Starting Over now will hopefully slow down the appearance of wrinkles!

Out Of Trouble 10 Minute Mask

Whenever I'm having a bit of a rubbish skin day, I slap on Out of Trouble.  It is a Zinc, Sulphur and Camphor based mask which helps absorb excess oil and slough away dead skin cells.  The next morning any spots, while not completely disappeared, are greatly reduced and any inflammation has been reduced. On top of using it as a face mask once or twice a week, it is also great as an overnight spot treatment.  Its a very thick, white formula that has quite a strong menthol smell.  The first time I smelled Out of Trouble I could tell how get it would be at sucking all the nasties out of my skin.  If you have oily, or acne prone skin I highly recommend this!

Ginger Souffle Whipped Body Cream

I love this body cream! I hate thick body butters that take ages to sink in, so this whipped body cream is perfect for me.  It is strongly scented with ginger which I love, but there is also a hint of citrus, making it a perfect autumnal/winter scent.  It melts into the skin leaving behind no residue; just perfectly moisturised skin.  I bought this on my lunch break one day (working in a city centre is dangerous for my bank balance) after my friend and I had slapped it on all over our arms at the counter.  We couldn't believe how quickly it sunk in and how smooth it left our skin.  We kept stroking our arms all day! The scent lasts an very long time on the skin, and throughout the day I get little whiffs of ginger.  I CANNOT RECOMMEND THIS ENOUGH!!!

As always I would love to hear any of your Origins recommendations, I am in love with this brand!

Love Nicola

Friday, 14 September 2012

What I've Been Wearing Lately

Hey Dolls :)

While I was doing my make up this morning before meeting an old friend for lunch, I realised that there are three products I've pretty much used daily for the last month or so that I still haven't blogged about yet.
Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua

In August, I went on holiday and for the evenings I wanted to try a much lighter foundation than I was used to.  Vitalumiere Aqua is extremely lightweight and fluid and because it's water based the foundation must be shaken before used.  For me, the coverage is light - in the sun I become very freckley and Vitalumiere Aqua lets my freckles show through.  While it does even out my skin tone, I definitely need to use a separate concealer.

The finish is extremely natural and allows the natural luminosity of my skin to shine through - however for it to last the full day I definitely need to use a setting powder.  While this foundation was perfect for my holiday and every day wear at work, I have since bought a separate foundation for night wear.  When looking back at photos from my holiday, in those taken with a flash my skin looked a little lifeless and 'blah'.  Sadly, Vitalumiere does not photograph well which is a little disappointing but both in person and in natural light, it leaves a really natural yet beautiful finish on the skin.

M.A.C Star Wonder Mineralize Skinfinish

I never seem to be able to keep up with M.A.C collections, however on a recent shopping trip I had a look at the Heavenly Creatures Collection and fell in love with Star Wonder.  It's a perfect combination of pink, plum and gold which is laid into beautiful patterned swirls.  It is extremely shimmery so a light hand is needed.  I love Star Wonder as I can use it either as an individual highlight or a blush/highlight in one as the pink and plum veining are extremely buildable.

Dior lipstick in 333 Nude

Along with Chanel Rouge Allure lipsticks, the Dior Addict lipsticks are my favourite formulation and Nude has quickly become one of my favourite shades.  Nude is a perfect 'my lips but better' shade and is another peach toned nude that on me are much more flattering than a lighter, skin toned nude.

The formula is extremely glossy and smooth - the product practically glides onto my lips without accentuating any imperfections.  While it is quite sheer, the shade is buildable and can become quite opaque depending on the look you want.  The lasting power is pretty average for a sheer lipstick, however because of the formula reapplication is simple, even without a mirror!

Lots of Love